Hoekstra’s Day by Day by Grace (April 4th)

Proclaiming Christ for Maturity in Christ

Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.(Colossians 1:28)

Spiritual maturity is one of the heavenly blessings that is ours in Christ Jesus.Our heavenly Father desires that all of His children develop in this blessing of maturity: that we may present every man perfect [maturein Christ Jesus.” As God’s people are being built up, the goal is that “we all come…to a perfect[matureman, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children…but… may grow up in all things into Him who is the head-Christ (Ephesians 4:13-15). Jesus is our standard of spiritual maturity. The Lord wants us to be maturing into the likeness of the character of Christ.

For the saints to mature in Christ requires the proclamation of ChristHim we preach… that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.” The truth about the Lord Jesus Christ is the message that matures the people of God. Him we preach.” We need to know who the Lord is, what He has done, and what He wants to do in our lives, that we might trust in Him as our source for growth: from whom all the body… grows with the increase that is from God (Colossians 2:19).

The Scriptures abound with many beautiful revelations of such truths about Jesus. He is the Son of God, divine“And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God (John 1:34). He is the Son of Man, Immanuel, God coming as a man“Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head…Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel…God with us” (Matthew 8:201:23). He is the Lamb of God. “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29).

This Jesus is our Mediator, bringing us the new covenant of grace“And for this reason, He is the Mediator of the new covenant” (Hebrews 9:15). He is our Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, supplying all we need from start to finish. “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End (Revelation 22:13). He is our “all in all.” “Christ is all and in all (Colossians 3:11).

Such truths about Jesus are the ultimate message to mature the saints.

Dear Lord Jesus, I long to mature in Your likeness. There is too much about my life that is immature or carnal. I hunger to see who You are and all that You want to do in and through me. Please reveal Yourself to me through Your word, that I might know You better and be conformed to Your image. This I pray in Your holy name, Amen.


From Billy Graham Desk

Wich Religion is in the most danger spiritually of missing out on God’s love and true happiness?


A:

From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Religions do not reject God—people do. Religions are simply made up of people. God’s love is for individuals. Each person has been created by God and He has put a soul into every man, woman and child. Hundreds of philosophies and scores of religions have been invented to circumvent the Word of God. Many philosophers and psychologists are still trying to make it appear that there is some other way to happiness other than the path of Jesus. But it comes down to this one thing: What will each person decide about Jesus Christ? Receiving God’s salvation is purely an individual decision.

The one who is in the most danger spiritually is the one who doesn’t see any need for God. They may enjoy life; they may be successful and looked up to by others. They may be moral and honest, and even be outwardly religious (although only outwardly, because it hasn’t touched their hearts). Only God can break through the barrier of a heart that has no place for Him. That is why the most important thing you can do is to submit to God and pray that others will also. God is able to do what we cannot do.

“For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation” (Ephesians 2:14). God desires to have a relationship with each person; that He might reconcile us to Him through what He did for us on the cross. We no longer have to be a stranger, but part of the family of God. To those who fear (respect) God, His message of salvation has been sent. Receive it today.

(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)

Ask Christ to be your Savior. Pray now.