The picture frame that limits Our quickly flying years Marks a border to the canvas On which our life appears And day by day the choices Of how we use our time Are painting our life’s portrait For those we leave behind So why not give the artist’s brush By faith To Jesus Christ? Only He can paint the love of God In our picture frame of life For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10 NLT A Picture Frame of Life by Peter Caligiuri copyright 2022 all rights reserved
Somehow we got a bit off track in our men’s zoom meeting last week and some of the newer believers seemed confused by conversations they had with some Jehovah’s Witnesses as to just exactly who Jesus is. They probably didn’t realize that the Watchtower society teaches that Jesus Christ was really originally the Archangel Michael – but not to get too deeply into the weeds I simply put together a pop quiz of people in both the Old and New Testaments to ask them one question. “Who is Jesus?” Here is a brief sampling of their answers –
Peter said: Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ the Son of the Living God.” Matthew 16:16
Isaiah said: For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government shall be upon His shoulder, and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor Mighty God; Everlasting Father; Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6
John said: In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the word was God. John 1:1
Moses said: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light!” and there was light. Genesis 1:1-3 (Father Son & Holy Spirit in creation)
Paul said: Waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. Titus 2:13
King David said: Your throne O God is forever and ever. The scepter of your kingdom is a scepter of uprightness. Psalm 45:6
Thomas said: Thomas answer him, “My Lord and my God!” John 20:28
Daniel said: And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations and languages should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion which shall not pass away, and His kingdom shall not be destroyed. Daniel 7:14
Jesus said: So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly I say to you, before Abraham was, I Am.” John 9:57
I am the Alpha and Omega, says the Lord God, “Who is and who was and who is to come” Revelation1:8
But Most important of all is who you say that Jesus is!
Matthew 16:15 He said to them “ But who do you say that I am?”
In 1957 Bill Bright wrote a presentation of that Gospel which he called, “The Four Spiritual Laws”. Since then – The Four Spiritual Laws – have been used in tracts, sermons and personal testimonies millions of times the world over to successfully lead people to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. The following is a special way of looking at those four core beliefs with just one additional word – the word still.
- God Still loves you; knows where you are and has a wonderful plan for your life.
For many people in institutions, it is easy to feel forgotten. Their address is no longer 231 Main Street; it is now just room 22 – window.
We are simply sent as messengers to tell folks that just as God watches every sparrow and counts every hair on our heads, he also still remembers where we live.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 ESV
Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows. Luke 12:7 ESV
- Man is Still sinful even in old age.
We may continue to harbor resentments, anger and bitterness. These can still be the things that separate us from God. Only as we see ourselves as we really are can we see God’s way of forgiveness and mercy.
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23 KJV
As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one. Romans 3:10 KJV
- Jesus is Still God’s only provision for sin.
No church no ritual or charitable contributions will cover up our guilt. Only the precious blood of Jesus Christ can buy our pardon. Only the cross is enough to pay for our sins.
But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:10 ESV
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6 ESV
- We Still must individually choose to believe in Jesus Christ and receive His gift of eternal life.
This is not only a philosophy. It is a real-time event! In a way salvation is like shopping at Walmart for a hat. We go to that store because we know that the door will always be open. We look through the racks until we find the hat that we need. We try it on and carry it to the cash register.
But that hat is still not ours! A transaction still has to take place. Of course unlike at Walmart, we cannot pay for what we need. When we get to heaven’s cash register and God rings up the price it is so high that no one could ever pay. But as we give up and turn to put the hat back on the shelf, Jesus steps in and offers to pay. He empties his pockets and gives all that He has to buy – not a hat; but the salvation that we so desperately need. He gave Himself on the cross that we might receive the gift of eternal life.
Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9 ESV