Abide – Good Morning
In I Corinthians 12:23-27 NLT says, “23 And the parts we regard as less honorable are those we clothe with the greatest care. So, we carefully protect those parts that should not be seen, 24 while the more honorable parts do not require this special care. So, God has put the body together such that extra honor and care are given to those parts that have less dignity. 25 This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other.26 If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad. 27 All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it.”
The parts we regard as less honorable refers to the sexual parts of the body, the parts that we carefully protect from the eyes of others. The point of this verse is that appearances are deceiving; all parts of the body are necessary, even the ones that should not be seen. No one should dismiss anyone else as unimportant in the body of our Lord Jesus Christ; neither should undue prominence be given to anyone. Doing this makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other equally. The harmony Paul wanted had already been discussed in 1 Corinthians 1:10. Such harmony happens only when all the members – the weak and the strong, the flamboyant and the quiet, the up-front and the behind-the-scenes – use their gifts, appreciate one another, and share in one another’s honors and suffering. As with the physical, human body, one part’s suffering causes every part to suffer. When the head aches, the whole body suffers. When a thumb is hit with a hammer, the whole body knows it. Believers should share one another’s burdens in order to help lighten them. There is no room for jealousy or strife when one person receives praise; instead, all should be glad. Amen!
Abide – Good Night
In John 14:27 NLT says, 27 “I am leaving you with a gift – peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.”
This verse echoes the first verse of the chapter. Our Lord Jesus Christ’s peace would not guarantee the absence of trouble-for our Lord Jesus Christ Himself faced excruciating spiritual, physical, and emotional struggles in the coming hours. Instead, our Lord Jesus Christ’s peace supplies strength and comfort for the burdens we are called to carry. Our Lord Jesus Christ gave the disciples peace that would help them through their own time of trial ahead. After three days, the risen Lord Jesus Christ would come to them and again bestow His peace upon them (John 20:19).
The peace our Lord Jesus Christ offers His disciples isn’t like the peace the world gives. It is His peace, the peace He modeled every day of His life. Our Lord Jesus Christ’s peace did not flee conflict, pain, or death. In fact, the more intense the difficulties, the more apparent our Lord Jesus Christ’s peace became. Our Lord Jesus Christ derived His peace from His relationship with the Father.
Sin, fear, uncertainty, and doubt work to make us troubled and afraid. The peace of God moves into our hearts and lives to restrain these hostile forces and offers comfort in place of conflict. Our Lord Jesus Christ says, He will give us that peace if we are willing to accept it from Him. The Holy Spirit’s work in our lives brings deep and lasting peace. We have confident assurance in any circumstance; with our Lord Jesus Christ’s peace, we have no need to fear the present or the future. Amen!
Share these: WORDS And THOUGHTS
Published by Elias A Busuego Jr PhD DTM
Elias A. Busuego, Jr., PhD, DTM is self-described as “proud of the only two women in my life – my wife and my daughter (with her husband and one grandson & one granddaughter). I am also proud of my three sons: John and his family (two sons & 1 daughter); Christopher and his family (with his wife and one grandson & one daughter); and Elias Jr. IV and his family (with his wife and one son & one daughter), who are all serving in the U.S. military.” The author states that he read the Bible back-to-back, and learned the history behind it, but did not understand its deeper spiritual perspective until he experienced of being Born-Again, born in spirit.
Since he was Born-Again on March 17, 1972, he started understanding the Passage and/or Scripture on John 3:3-7 NLT.
These are most of his favorite verses. In John 3:3-7 NLT says, “3 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”
4 “What do you mean?” exclaimed Nicodemus. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again? "Jesus replied, “I assure you; no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. 6 Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life. 7 So don’t be surprised when I say, ‘You must be born again.’
In John 3:5 – This statement has perplexed and divided commentators for many centuries. Some traditions have taught that the water denotes physical birth (referring to the “water” of amniotic fluid or even semen) and Spirit to spiritual birth – in which case our Lord Jesus Christ would be saying that a person has to have two births: one physical and the second, spiritual. This view builds upon the preceding context when Nicodemus referred to physical birth. It also points to the parallel our Lord Jesus Christ makes in verse 6. According to this position, our Lord Jesus Christ would have been granting the Pharisee’s point in order to highlight the nature of the second birth as spiritual. Two strengths of this interpretation are that it avoids making the physical act of water baptism a necessity and that it avoids bringing almost a “third birth” idea into the discussion. If water doesn’t refer to natural birth, say its defenders, then our Lord Jesus Christ seems to be saying that a person must be born of their parents, born of water, and born of the Spirit.
Other traditions have taught that the water refers to baptism and the Spirit to spiritual regeneration – thus, our Lord Jesus Christ would have been saying that a person must both be baptized and receive the Spirit in order to enter the Kingdom of God. This view is at times influenced by the belief that the sacrament of baptism is itself a requirement for salvation.
A parallel view makes water refer to baptism but places the emphasis on teaching two steps of baptism; one by water, the other by the Spirit. For support, these views point to the larger context in John where John the Baptist and water baptism are mentioned just preceding the events in Cana and following this encounter with Nicodemus. They also rely on the tendency of previous generations of Christians to equate the mention of water with baptism. But in the first seven chapters of John, water appears in some way (naturally or symbolically) in each chapter. To associate water and baptism too closely makes baptism a higher priority than the Scriptures give it. Here, for instance, if our Lord Jesus Christ was speaking of two completely separate acts, two baptisms, it is odd that the rest of the discussion between our Lord Jesus Christ and Nicodemus never again refers to the subject but revolves entirely around the work of God’s Spirit.
Still other traditions have taught that our Lord Jesus’ reference to water is not physical in either the sense of birth or baptism. The term water is simply another description of the Spirit – or the Spirit’s activity of cleansing and giving life (see John 7:37-39).
In John 3:6 – Humans can produce only more human beings; this answers Nicodemus’s question in verse 4. Only God the Holy Spirit gives new life from heaven. At the same time God puts His Spirit into us, we are given a new regenerated human spirit. It is God’s Spirit, not our effort, that makes us children of God (John 1:12). Our Lord Jesus’ description corrects human hopes that we might somehow inherit goodness from parents or earn it by good behavior, church background, or correct associations. At some point we must be able to answer the question: Have I been born of the Spirit?
In John 3:7 – Our Lord Jesus’ statement to Nicodemus that evening has been heralded to all the world ever since. Both Jew and Gentile have heard the divine mandate: You must be born again. Without the new birth, one cannot see or enter into the Kingdom of God. In those words, millions have heard our Lord Jesus Christ speaking directly to their hearts and our hearts. Behind our Lord Jesus’ challenge is His invitation to each of us –” You must be born again; allow me to do that for you.”
Since he was born again on March 17, 1972, he started also understanding his other favorite Passage on Romans 12:2 NLT.
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”
When Elias offered his entire self to God, a change happened in his relation to the world. As one of Born-Again Christians, he believes we are called to a different lifestyle than what the world offers with its behavior and customs, which are usually selfish and often corrupting (Galatians 1:4; 1 Peter 1:14).
He commented that Born-Again Christians are to live as citizens of a future world. There will be pressure to conform, to continue living according to the script written by the world, but Born-Again Christian believers are forbidden to give in to that pressure.
But refusing to conform to this world’s values must go even deeper than the level of behavior and customs – it must go to the transforming of the way we think.
In Elias testimonies as a Born-Again Christian believer, he emphasized that born-again is an experience and he experienced a complete transformation from the inside out. And the change must begin in the mind, where all thoughts and actions begin. Much of the work is done by God’s Spirit in us, and the tool most frequently used is God’s Word. As we memorize and meditate upon God’s Word, our way of thinking changes. Our minds become first informed, and then conformed to the pattern of God, the pattern for which we were originally designed. When we as Born-Again Christian believers have had our minds transformed and are becoming more like our Lord Jesus Christ, we will know what God wants and we will want to do it for it is good, pleasing to God, and perfect for us.
It is from those gleanings that he was able to write this book.
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