“Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began, and which now has been manifested through the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel…”
(2 Timothy 1:7-10 ESV)
Today I am ending my online Bible Study with Renee Swope, "A Confident Heart". The confidence that I have to make this blog is from my faith in Jesus. In 2 Timothy 1:5 Paul mentions the faith of Timothy's mother and grandmother which was now in Timothy. I have that kind of legacy too. My mother was in a fatal accident in 1986 and at her memorial service her uncle stood up and quoted these scriptures. Her grandmother was at the service and turned 100 in 1991. My Great Grandmother taught Sunday school into her 90's in the Lakeview, Oregon area. When we went to her 100th birthday my daughter, Mary, was her youngest Great-Great-Grandchild. Her mind was so sharp that she knew every person's name and place in the family. She taught her faith to my mother and my mother taught it to me. I pray I will have that kind of clarity of mind until I see Jesus.
So, what does Easter mean to me? At this time of year I am thankful that I live in a country where I can praise God in public and declare my faith. Jesus was born of a virgin, lived a perfect life, heal sickness, raised the dead, forgave sins and trained 11 men that would continue His work after He went to heaven. He was killed, buried and rose on the third day and now intercedes for me at the right hand of God the Father, according to the scriptures. (Deena's version of The Apostles' Creed )
I am not going to live with Jesus for eternity, because of my mother's faith or my grandmother's faith. I live by the faith given to me by the Holy Spirit. I only have that confidence by the grace of God.
Ephesians 2:8 & 9 declares that "...by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing this is a gift of God, so that no one may boast."
AND I John 1:9 "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (ESV)
This is the hope that lives in me. I am a sinner saved by grace. I pray if you are reading this and you do not know Jesus as your Lord and Savior that today would be your day of salvation. I would love to hear from you and if you want more depth on the things I have mentioned check out my pastors blog: Pastor Mark has got some great topics and resources.