A Time to Live

A Study of Salvation

“ Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.” That’s how the King James Bible puts it.

Now, let’s hear it from the Message Bible: “And I got it, thank God! In the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade. Through us, he brings knowledge of Christ. Everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance.”

Either translation says the same thing, “You and I win every single time!”

I’ve never liked to lose. I always want to win. That’s one of the reasons why I enjoy being a believer so much. I always get to win! I know that, as a believer, the game isn’t over, even when the whistle blows, unless I quit. And I never want to give in and quit. I want to win, so I know I just simply continue to play until I win.

Like when I get sick. I know that I’m going to defeat that sickness one way or another. I’m going to get healed here, or I’m going to get healed over there! A Nazarine preacher taught me that lesson. One time I conducted a funeral for a 12 year old girl. A Nazarine preacher helped me with the service. I was feeling somewhat down because I had prayed for the little girl so hard, and yet she died, anyway. In the service, he said, “Now, we can rejoice, because this precious little girl received her ultimate healing!”

That really didn’t go along with my theology, as a Pentecostal. I wanted her to get healed in this life, not the next. However, as I sat there next to my brother in the ministry, as I thought about what he had said, I am saying to myself, “You know my Nazarine friend is right. This was the ultimate healing for that little girl. We win!”

I’ve had a lot to learn through the years, but if I’ve learned anything,I have learned this, “It’s not the score that always counts, it’s how we play the game. If we give it our best shot, and are good sports throughout the time-frame, we win, no matter what the score is at the end of the time.”

God looks at things much differently than you and I. Jesus said the little widow that threw in her two mites into the temple treasury gave more than anybody in the temple, because she gave out of her need. They all gave out of their abundance. God looks at how much we still have left after we put our money in the collection basket at church.

And I’ve found out that He doesn’t grade each of us, comparing us with others, on the good things we do for Him. He sees what giftings we have, and how capable we are, and then measures us by ourselves and not over against anybody else. I’ve noticed that some of the best Olympic stars compete against their own record, and not someone else’s.

Of course, fame and fortune, in God’s sight is not our measure of success in this world. God judges us on faithfulness and commitment. That’s why it’s so important to lay down our lives, and pick up the new life through Jesus Christ. Without Him, we can do nothing that will please God.


Click to write to Pastor Strader, E-Mail Pastor.

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