IDENTITY > SANCTITY > UNITY

calls-name-Lord-man-wallpaper_1920x1200Text: 1 Corinthians 1:1-3 – ESV

1 Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and our brother Sosthenes, 2 To the church of God that is in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints together with all those who in every place call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, both their Lord and ours: 3 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

Identity

Verse 1 brings out the fact that Paul’s identity was clearly in Christ. He was ‘called by the will of God to be an apostle of Jesus‘. Paul was not going about his business by his own will, nor by his own merit. No, he was called by the will of God. 

How do you define yourself? Does faith in Jesus feature in your identity? Are you living out God’s call upon your life? God equips those whom He calls. 

Sanctity

In verse 2 we see that Paul writes his letter to ‘those sanctified in Christ Jesus‘. The Church of God is made up of those who have come to the end of themselves, who have repented of their sins before God, received His offer of forgiveness in Christ’s complete work on the cross, and who have placed their faith and trust in Him for salvation. When God ‘saves’ someone He also makes them holy in that their sins are forgiven. Yet, it is important for a believer to submit themselves to God’s continuing work of sanctification, that work of the Holy Spirit in which He changes us more and more into the person He wants us to be. To be holy is to be set apart unto God.

Does your life reflect a personal, intimate relationship with the living God? Are you experiencing God’s purifying work in your life?

Unity

Further, in verse 2 we see that Paul writes to those who have been ‘called to be saints together with all those who in every place call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ’. God is busy building His Church all over the world. The local Church is the local expression of God’s global work. This reminds us that as believers in Jesus we should submit ourselves to a local Church, being our spiritual home in which we learn, grow, and serve. It is also encouraging to know that we join with millions of believers all over the world in worshipping our Lord. God has called us to unity. That doesn’t mean we look the same in our dress, but that God’s grace and peace is evident in all that we do. God is full of grace and peace. In turn, His Holy Spirit empowers us to extend grace and peace to others.

Friend, have you completely surrendered your life to Jesus? Have you received His forgiveness of your sins? Have you experienced a change in your life as you allowed Jesus to become your Master? If not, call out to Him today. If you would like to know more about what Jesus has done for you, please don’t hesitate to make contact with us. We would love to help you on your way to becoming a believer in Jesus.

God bless you. 

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What is the gospel?

gospelThe word “gospel” simply means “good news.” It is the good news of the person and work of Jesus Christ. Jesus, the only begotten Son of God, came to earth to give His life as a ransom for sinners. You and I are sinners in that we break God’s laws and commands. Since it is God who made us, and it is His laws we are breaking, He has every right to punish us for our sins. The good news is that He chose not to punish us, but to send His Son Jesus to take the punishment upon Himself. Jesus paid the full price for our sins by dying on a cross, taking our place, so that God can offer us forgiveness of our sins without us having to work for it. The reason we don’t have to work for it is because we are not able to live a holy enough life. This “working for it” can be seen as religion or spirituality. God’s offer of forgiveness of sins is not about religion, but about reconciliation between Himself and us. That means that Jesus came to die for YOUR sins and to reconcile YOU to God too.

God calls us to repent before Him of our sins, receive His forgiveness, and place our faith and trust in Him for salvation. This offer of being “saved” is a gracious gift of God, it cannot be earned. The offer of salvation is open to all who would believe in Him.

The Apostle Paul said in Romans 1:16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes…” We, at Ladysmith Baptist Church, are not ashamed of the gospel. We are not ashamed of this good news. We are not ashamed of our Lord Jesus Christ. We want YOU to know that God loves YOU. Have you received Jesus as your Lord and Saviour? Have you repented before God of your sins and accepted His free gift of salvation?

If you would like to know more about what Jesus has done for you, don’t hesitate to make contact with us. We would love to help you on your way to becoming a believer in Jesus. Remember, the gospel is good news!