Victory Vitamin Blog – Matthew 10:29-31

“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father.  So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”

Matthew 10:29-31 NIV

 

It’s easy to think that God is unconcerned, preoccupied with bigger things, or just generally not mindful of our everyday struggles.  Jesus’ words above should put such foolish notions to rest.  There is nothing remarkable about Sparrows.  Their appearance and song are bland.  They reproduce in high numbers.  And yet, God is mindful of a single sparrow.  He knows where they fly, He knows when they die.  There is nothing in God’s creation that is beyond His concern and control.  God’s eye is on the sparrow, and His eye is on you.  He knows how you feel, and what you need.  Which is why He proved His love and concern by becoming human to pay the price for our sinful rebellion against Him.  When Jesus died, your slate of sins was wiped clean.  Through faith in Jesus, death no longer has the final say.  You will live, after you die, in the perfection of heaven.  Life can be hard.  But don’t be afraid; you are worth more than the half cent sparrow.

Victory Vitamin Blog – Matthew 28:19

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”

-Matthew 28:19 NIV

 

 

This Sunday is Holy Trinity Sunday.  You won’t find he word “trinity” in the Bible anywhere, it’s a word we humans use to try to describe the way God describes Himself.  I won’t waste your time trying to explain the inexplicable to you.  God is, in many ways, incomprehensible.  One God, three persons?  That’s how God reveals Himself.  He is ONE.  There is ONE God.  And yet this one God reveals Himself as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  I don’t get it.  I don’t have to.  I would expect that the almighty creator of the universe would be beyond my comprehension.  I’d be disappointed if God weren’t beyond my comprehension.  But not everything about God is incomprehensible.  God is love.  1 John 4:16  God forgives.  Isaiah 43:25  God is with you always.  Matthew 28:20.  God’s in control of your life.  Romans 8:28  What more do you need to know?  God loves you enough to die for your sins, forgive you, be with, and protect you, and take you to be with Him in heaven one day.  God is largely, but not completely incomprehensible and for that reason He is ineffably sublime!

Victory Vitamin Blog – 1 Peter 3:21 – Victory Lutheran Church

“and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ,”

-1 Peter 3:21 NIV

 

I don’t like to rock the boat. Ever.  But baptism is a controversial topic among Christians and I can’t help but speak the Truth.  Most Non-Catholic and Non-Lutheran Christian churches today believe that baptism is merely a symbol, an outward act that conveys nothing, but symbolizes one’s decision to accept Christ into their hearts.  Problem is, the Bible never says anything about making a decision for Christ, or accepting Him into one’s heart.  The Bible does say a lot about how baptism saves us.   For starters, look at the first 10 words above.  Couldn’t be more clear.  But one might ask, HOW does baptism save me?  Fair enough.  Acts 2:38 teaches that through baptism we receive the Holy Spirit.  1 Corinthians 12:3 teaches that without the Holy Spirit, no one can say “Jesus is Lord.”  Since we need the Holy Spirit in order to believe, and since baptism gives the Holy Spirit, it is truly good, right, and salutary to say “Baptism saves you (not to mention the fact that the Bible says the very same thing).  It saves us by giving us the Holy Spirit who enables us to believe.  Rejoice that you are baptized.  Rejoice every day in the fact that the Holy Spirit lives in you and enables you to believe that Jesus is YOUR Savior.  Rejoice that because you believe and are baptized, you will be saved.

Victory Vitamin Blog – John 14:3

“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”

-John 14:3 NIV

 

God has always wanted to be with His people.  God created the world, the Garden of Eden, and Adam and Eve with that goal in mind.  We were created to be in communion WITH God.  Adam and Eve disobeyed God and so Sin has destroyed what God desires.  Sin and perfection cannot be united.  Thanks be to God, that He became Immanuel, “God with us” and died to pay the price for all sins.  He is with us now in the Word and in the Lord’s Supper to strengthen us while we wait to be with the Lord forever.  And that’s Jesus’ promise in the verse above.  He will come and take us to be with Him eternally in heaven.  It will be unlike anything we have ever experienced or could ever imagine.  We will be in perfection and peace, united with our Maker for eternity.  Until then, God is with us in the Bible, the bread, and the wine.  Through Word and sacrament we remain in Him until we are with him forever.  God cannot lie, and Jesus’ promise in John 14:3 gives us hope, happiness and peace while we wait for His return.

Victory Vitamin Blog – 1 Peter 1:17

“live your lives as strangers here in reverent fear.”

-1 Peter 1:17 NIV

 

 

It seems strange to call a place “home” when you’ve never been there.  God’s Word tells us to live our lives on earth as though we were strangers here.  That’s because heaven is our home.  We were created to be with God, but sin separated us from Him.  Through Jesus, God has fixed the problem of sin and we are forgiven through faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus.  Sooner than we think, the day will come when we will be with Him in heaven, and until then we live as strangers here on earth.  We shouldn’t fit in too well.  We should be a bit uncomfortable here.  God has given us a different agenda, different priorities, a different mission.  We’re tempted to focus primarily on earthly physical things when God would have us focus on things spiritual.  He desires that we make our relationship with Him our top priority.  God promises to strengthen and guide us while we live as strangers and just because we don’t fit in, doesn’t mean we can’t make this place a little brighter while we’re here.  You are loved and forgiven.  Love and forgive others.  Someday soon, I’ll see ya at home.