Election Campaigns

We have recently had several elections across the country. There have been surprises and shocks. Some people are disillusioned with the system and do not vote or take much interest. Others campaign tirelessly for particular causes and chosen candidates trying to make allies. And making promises to improve life.

The Bible makes amazing promises. These centre on Jesus Christ, and a transformed life. God’s guaranteed plan is for him to return to the earth to rule fairly.

He [God} has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising him from the dead.

Acts 17:31

This is our hope. This is our campaign. In the first century the apostles risked life and limb to preach this. Their message was strong and compulsive. God is going to act. He has warned us. We have no excuse to be surprised or shocked when these dramatic events finally unfold. God has elected His son Jesus to rule the world. There will be a change. A permanent change.

He will reign over the house of Jacob for ever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.

Luke 1:33

He will judge Your [God’s] people with righteousness, and Your poor with justice…he will save the children of the needy, and will break in pieces the oppressor…in his days the righteous shall flourish, and abundance of peace, until the moon is no more. He shall have dominion also from sea to sea…all nations shall serve him

Psalm 72: 2-11

The apostles urged, pleaded and begged people to believe. To believe and then to act. They asked people to ally themselves to Jesus. We try to do the same. It is the ultimate election campaign.

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Freedom at Easter!

Good news! The rules have been relaxed. Shielding has been lifted. People are less afraid and have more freedom. This has happened part-way through the Jewish festival of Passover, and in time for Easter weekend.

Two thousand years ago just after the Jewish Passover, Jesus’ disciples were cowering behind locked doors for fear of the Jews’ (John 20:19). Jesus had been crucified: their world was shattered; their hopes reduced to tears of despair.

But they soon changed. Jesus was alive again! Raised from the dead never to die again.

I am he who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive for evermore

Revelation 1:18

The disciples were utterly convinced of this. They risked their lives, disobeying the authorities by continuing to preach about the risen Jesus.

This is the bedrock of the Christian faith. It is the best news ever. It is the most important event in the world’s history.

In 1 Corinthians chapter 15 the apostle Paul argued, very strongly, that without this belief:

  • our faith is futile;
    • we are still beset by sins and their consequences;
    • faith in the Word of God is worthless;
    • faith in God’s forgiveness is futile;
    • hope of an after-life is invalid.

These are strong words. In contrast, he tells baptised believers that they are ‘free from sin’, and can hope for eternal life.

But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life.

Romans 6:22

Echoing the words of Jesus himself:

“Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed

John 8:34-36

And freedom from fear:

So we may boldly say: “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”

Hebrews 13:6

This is true, eternal, freedom. It is still the best news ever.

Actions Not Words

Recently there have been several protests in this country. People have asked for meaningful actions, not just platitudes and reassuring words.

It is an old saying that: ‘actions speak louder than words’. And we all get frustrated by empty responses.

But we need to remember that God asks for actions too.

Jesus said:

Not everyone who says to Me, “Lord, Lord,” shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.

Matthew 7:21

God asks for faith:

But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

Hebrews 11:6

But the apostle James says that true faith affects the way we live:

Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.  But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.

There is no way that we can earn salvation by good works, however virtuous and kind we may be. We can only be saved by faith in God and in the sacrifice of the Lords Jesus Christ. But this faith is a faith of action: a life of dedication to trying to please God.

So we must read the Bible to find out what he asks of us, and then try to the best of our ability to do it. Actions not just words.

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