Author Archives: lrbartel

A Gift Even Greater Than Being an “Organ Donor!”

Just rejoicing today in the fact that God has given us a compassionate Savior – One we can identify with – A Helper who is “like us” in every way – but without our sin and failings!!

Here’s how the Bible puts it in Hebrews 2…

“In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through what He suffered. Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family! … Since the children have flesh and blood, He too shared in their humanity so that by His death He might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil – and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death… For this reason, He had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that He might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because He himself suffered when he was tempted, He is able to help those who are being tempted. “ (From Hebrews 2.10-18)

I don’t think there is any perfect analogy for what this Biblical passage describes (and I’m grateful for that)! Perhaps an “organ donor” comes close – someone from the same family, with the same blood type and other similar characteristics, who selflessly provides a life-rescuing organ… I don’t know, you may be able to think of other examples…

I know this; I am surely grateful that our Heavenly Father sent His Only Son to earth as a human, to live a sinless life, to offer Himself to die for our sins, to conquer death, and make His resurrection power available to all who believe! Thank You! Thank You!! Thank You God!!!

“From Glory…To Grave…To Glory!!!

“FROM GLORY TO GRAVE TO GLORY” – that’s what Jesus, the Christ, did on our behalf!

I read about it this morning in the Bible during my time of “Coffee with the Lord” and am still rejoicing! … Here it is:

“For it was not to angels that God subjected the world to come, of which we are speaking. It has been testified somewhere,

‘What is man, that you are mindful of him, or the son of man, that you care for him? You made him for a little while lower than the angels; you have crowned him with glory and honor, putting everything in subjection under his feet.’ (Prophecy in Psalm 8:4-6 quoted)

Now in putting everything in subjection to Him, He left nothing outside His control. At present, we do not yet see everything in subjection to him. But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, SO THAT BY THE GRACE OF GOD HE MIGHT TASTE DEATH FOR EVERYONE.” (From Hebrews 2:5–9 ESV)

So Jesus Christ voluntarily left heaven’s glory to fulfill God’s plan to redeem and save us! He lived a sinless life of ministry on earth – proclaiming the message of the Kingdom, and manifesting the “inbreaking” of God’s Kingdom through miraculous signs and wonders. He suffered persecution and rejection by those who should have welcomed Him, and “became obedient unto death – even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:6-8) in order to redeem and save us! … “BY THE GRACE OF GOD HE TASTED DEATH FOR EVERYONE!”

But that is not the end of the story! “From glory to grave TO GLORY! “Then comes the end, when He [Jesus] delivers the Kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and ever authority and power! He must reign until He has put all enemies under His feet. The Last enemy to be destroyed is death! … Death is swallowed up in victory! Oh death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. BUT THANKS BE TO GOD WHO GIVES US THE VICTORY THROUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST!” (From 1 Corinthians 15:24-26, 55-57)

OH WHAT A SAVIOR! The One who came from heaven, lived and ministered among us proclaiming the Kingdom of Heaven by word and deed, suffered and died on our behalf, conquered death and offers eternal life and “resurrection power” to those who follow Him! OH WHAT A SAVIOR!

“Meal Delivery” – Via Ravens and Roadkill

Just wondering… Would you accept and eat food delivered by a raven?

Here’s the story in the Bible I read today that prompted that question…

“Now Elijah the Tishbite, of Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, ‘As the Lord, the God of Israel, lives, before whom I stand, there shall be neither dew nor rain these years, except by my word.’  And the word of the Lord came to him: ‘Depart from here and turn eastward and hide yourself by the brook Cherith, which is east of the Jordan.  You shall drink from the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there.’  So he went and did according to the word of the Lord. He went and lived by the brook Cherith that is east of the Jordan.  And the ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.” (1 Kings 17:1–6 ESV)

After all, where did the ravens get that food?  You know ravens… carrion, roadkill, dead rotting meat and other stuff!  In the natural anything they deliver should be avoided!  It could kill you or make you very sick!  Ick!!!

But it was God’s provision for the prophet and he obeyed, was thankful and ate it.  I know, when you obey the Lord and do His will (even when it’s difficult), you’re supposed to get the good stuff… prosperity, blessing, beef steak, caviar, a very nice home and a Lexus in the garage.  But not Elijah… brook water and stuff that a raven brought.  Elijah delivered God’s message!  He put his life at great risk!  Now Ahab was out to get him and Jezebel wanted his head.  God told him where to go hide and then sent the caterer to care for his meals… Ravens with meat in their beaks!  Offer thanks and eat it prophet!!

Whoever said serving the Lord and obeying him would be easy – a walk in the park?  Reminds me of a few verses of Scripture elsewhere… 

“Peter began to say to him, ‘See, we have left everything and followed you.’  Jesus said, ‘Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, WITH PERSECUTIONS, and in the age to come eternal life.” (Mark 10:28–30)

“Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted! (2 Timothy 3:12)

“It has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in Him but also suffer for His sake.” (Philippians 1:29)

Hey, the Bible and what it teaches is “reality therapy” for the “prosperity gospel!”  Hey the Lord blesses, protects, and provides… but there’s also that “with persecutions” part.  So enjoy water from the brook and thank God for the raven and the meat he brought!

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