There was an error in this gadget

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Luke 8:4-21, “You Gotta Dig the Sower?” A Bible Study Devotion.


Luke 8:4-21, “You Gotta Dig the Sower?” A Bible Study Devotion.

Read Luke 8:4-21

Here we see the very famous parable of the sower. Jesus is demonstrating the different types of people that hear the gospel and how they respond by the illustration of the different types of soils on which His seed will fall. In his day everyone present would understand the different soils because farming was prevalent in their society. Today, the percentage of people in America who understand farming is shrinking each day. I will attempt to put this parable in language for today.

It is worthy to point out why Jesus decided to tell this parable at this time. Read in verse 4, a large crowd was gathering and people were coming from town after town. Obviously Jesus was becoming very famous and people were flocking to him. This is good and bad. It means that there were many who were caught up in the fever of the day; Jesus. Many that were just following the crowd. Jesus gives the parable to place a mirror in front of the listener. Use this parable to examine your own heart. Which soil are you?

Jesus says there are four types of “soil,” or conditions of the heart, that the word of God can fall to. Note that of these four soils, only one produces fruit in the end. Don’t read this and just assume, if you are a Christian that you are in category four. This is a message to the person’s heart as a whole, but it can also be a message to the Christian’s heart at different times in their life.

Heart condition 1, the seed that falls on the path: Notice in this example that the seed falls on the path and is trampled on. Then…the birds come and take away the seed. The path would be the place that gets walked on all the time, or in today’s words, it is the world view. We all live in a place in America where we are constantly bombarded with sex and lies and sin and people who hate God. These are the things that cross the nightly television, papers, and radio. You cannot turn on the TV without seeing some scientist who has “discovered” the answer to a question about the universe that explains how the world works without a God. If you hear and believe that “In the beginning God…,” you are instantly beaten down by society, friends, family, people at work who think you are a simpleton. You are a fool if you believe that God created everything just like the Bible says. You have not “thought things through.” If you allow yourself to be walked on like a seed on this path of popular opinion, you will be ripe to have Satan come and take away the word (seed) that was planted.

Heart condition 2, the seed that falls on rock: Here we have the people who get swept up in the latest “religious” craze. Walk into a revival tent with the music and the crowd. It is exciting and people all around you are seemingly “finding” God. This can be newest “spiritual” thing. It can be a popular preacher, a million dollar selling book, or God forbid some trend that you see on Oprah. In all of these cases, the “religious” fever is present on day one, goes to the heights of excitement on day two, and fades away on day three. There is no root of God’s truth. There is no mention of why you needed “religion” in the first place. The root is that you are an awful sinner in God’s eyes, and you cannot save yourself. You must have Jesus pay your penalty for sin.

Heart condition 3, the seed that fell among the thorns. This one is quite simple. This one does not need to be changed to words for today. This is the same now as it was then. This one is where you find the love of money, position, popularity, and material goods. This seed would produce but all this other worldly stuff chokes it out. This one is very common for the believing Christian to fall susceptible to. You must guard against taking your eyes off of the real prize. It does not say that you cannot have these things, but it does say that you cannot love these things above God.

Heart condition 4, the seed that fell on good soil, AND YIELDED A CROP: I highlighted this last part because it can be overlooked at times. Why does a farmer plant a seed? Why does God plant the word in your heart? Same reason; to produce a crop. If the farmer plants a seed and waters it and tends to it and in the end is returned a seed, what was the point? God saves you for you. After that, he wants you to work to the salvation of others.

All of these have one thing in common: it was the same seed that was planted in each case. Notice that the seed never changes, just the place where the seed falls. Don’t believe any new thing you hear on TV or the “spiritual” flavor of the day. God’s word is timeless. It is the same today as when Jesus said these words. If it is not in the Bible, don’t believe it.

Written by Chris Vasecka

To join a group of Christian business professionals who want to guide the next generation of Christian small business owners and professionals go to www.goodfaithpeople.ning.com.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Luke 7:36-50, “Don’t Call Jesus a Chump,” A Bible Study Devotion.


Luke 7:36-50, “Don’t Call Jesus a Chump,” A Bible Study Devotion.

Read Luke 7:36-50

When I first read this passage I assumed I would write a typical devotion about the situation and the lesson it is teaching. However, something else just jumped off the page. I tried to put myself in the place of the Pharisee to gauge his motivations. He has invited Jesus to his home for a meal. Why? Is it because he wants to spend time with him? Is it because he respects him and wants to learn from him? I'm not sure, it does not say. But look at the chain of events:

The pharisee invites Jesus to his home.
There is a woman at Jesus feet.
The pharisee has negative thoughts about Jesus.
The pharisee has negative thoughts about the woman.
Jesus calls his name.
The pharisee responds with the respectful term "teacher."
Jesus tells him a parable.

Let's break this down. We will have to jump back and forth between the chain of events to make some sense out of this scene. Look at how the pharisee responds to Jesus and the woman at Jesus' feet. He says in verse 39, "If this man were a profit, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is - that she is a sinner." In that one sentence he is saying: Jesus is a liar, Jesus is only a man, the pharisee is a judge and judges that Jesus should not allow a sinner to touch him, the woman is beneath the pharisee because she is a sinner, and the pharisee is not a sinner by comparison. Wow, pretty arrogant, huh? Notice that it also says that the pharisee said this under his breath. Not only is the pharisee making all these judgments, but he is also not man enough to say them out loud, which shows contempt. So a few questions are: Why did he invite Jesus at all? This is in his house right? So why is the "sinner" in there at all? Is this some kind of set up?




Jesus then says to the pharisee, "Simon, I have something to tell you." The pharisee then says, "Tell me, teacher." Tell me teacher? So is this guy two faced? He is thinking all these rotten things about Jesus and the woman, then snaps to attention, puts on a fake smile, and calls Jesus "Teacher?"

Jesus then goes on to tell him a parable about sin and forgiveness. Imagine sitting in the room. There is a woman weeping, running her hair all over Jesus' feet, and pouring perfume on them. You would think that the conversation with the pharisee would halt and attention would turn to the woman. The awful sinner. However, Jesus goes on to tell a parable, directed to the pharisee that is speaking to the condition of the pharisee, even though he does not understand.

When you read this now and you can see the whole situation, and it is about someone else, it seems crazy that the pharisee cannot see the irony in Jesus' words. However, has this happened to you too? Have you ever looked at the sin of someone else and not been able to see your own? And don't miss this one... Have you ever had Jesus speaking to you in a story that is surrounding you and missed the whole message because you were too important to "listen?" What if the Holy Spirit is speaking to you at this time in your life in a parable?

To miss what God is trying to teach you is one thing, but to have you ever been two faced to God? What the pharisee did, mumble disdain under his breath, and then paste an "Eddie Haskell" type persona smile on and pay Jesus respectful lip service is obvious. But do we do the same thing; only it's not so obvious? Have you ever shaken your head in disgust and asked God why he made someone the way he did? Have you ever prayed or left church and within minutes willfully walked right out of God's path? If you have done these, you are basically calling God a chump... If you really expect to try and get one past God, you are saying he is a chump. Would you call God a chump to his face? Would you call him one under your breath with prettier words? I bet the answer to the first one is "NO!" I bet the answer to the second one is "maybe???"

Written by Chris Vasecka

To join a group of Christian business professionals who want to guide the next generation of Christian small business owners and professionals go to www.goodfaithpeople.ning.com.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Luke 7:18-35, “What if I Sometimes Doubt?” A Bible Study Devotion.


Luke 7:18-35, “What if I Sometimes Doubt?” A Bible Study Devotion.

Read Luke 7:18-35

Have you ever doubted that Jesus is who he said he is? Have you ever been so moved by God that you were sure of his promises, enjoying the “view” from the mountaintops, only to have your situation change and begin to doubt as you head for the valley? Most people would say yes. So what does Jesus think of you when you doubt? Let’s turn to scripture…

Just a little while ago, John the Baptist was the talk of the town. He had them lined up around the block just for a few seconds with him in the river. He was the man to see. People knew his name. Even the Messiah himself showed up for a dip in the water. Not only that, but right after, God himself made a guest speech to all the people present. I doubt that John could feel much closer to God at that time. He was on the “mountaintop.” He even made this now famous quote, “I baptize you with water. But one more powerful than I will come, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” In other words, John is not doubting right now…

Just a little time has passed and we see John sitting in prison. The valley is surrounding him; the mountaintop far in the rear view mirror. What had he been thinking? “How did this happen? I was just baptizing Jesus himself, God was speaking at my venue. And now I’m sitting in jail?” “Is this how this is supposed to work? Was that even Jesus at all?” None of that is written in the Bible, just a guess. But it does say this in verse 19, “he (John) sent them to the Lord to ask, ‘Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?” That my friend, is doubt…



So John’s guys go find Jesus and ask him John’s question. (Side note…) I like how they phrase the question to Jesus. “John the Baptist sent us to you to ask, ‘Are you the one who was to come…” like they are saying, “look dude, we don’t doubt you but John wanted to know…” anyway, back to the lesson…

The first thing we see is good news. Jesus gives them an answer. He could have shrugged his shoulders and said, “maybe, maybe not, ha ha ha.” However, he does not simply say “yes.” Correct me if I’m wrong, but Jesus will never give a “yes/no” answer in all of scripture. Not his style… What he does do is point them to the things that he has been doing. His answer is so much more than a simple “yes/no.” The answer is worthy of its own study in itself. He points out that he can heal sickness, blindness, lameness, deafness, and even deadness. Flip quick to Isaiah 35:5, 6 and 61:1. Here he is showing that he is fulfilling prophecy. So he is proving he is the one by the miracles, and the fulfillment of prophecy.

After he gave them the answer they came for, he decides this is a good teachable moment. So he turns to the crowd and uses the situation to drive home some points. Sorry, but it will not fit in this devotion… However, he does say this, that we do need to hear right now in verse 28,”I tell you, among those born of women there is no one greater than John; yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.”

So follow this progression of logic…

• John doubts Jesus is who he said he is…
• Jesus says John is the best…
• Jesus says that anyone in his kingdom is greater than John…
• Hence, Jesus is cool with you doubting…

So next time you have seconds thoughts about this whole Jesus thing, remember what Jesus did for John. He pointed out the things that he has done. He showed him that the things Jesus did cannot be done by man. Try and remember the things that He has done for you…least of all dying to cover the penalty for your sin…

Written by Chris Vasecka

To join a group of Christian business professionals who want to guide the next generation of Christian small business owners and professionals go to www.goodfaithpeople.ning.com.

Thursday, April 15, 2010



John 3:3, “You Must be Born Again” (Part 3, Student’s Testimony) A Bible Study Devotion.

As promised, a student’s testimony, share with all the teenagers in your life…

My names Dalton, I am a 2009 graduate from Blaine High School. Now what I wanna recall is a time in my life, let’s rephrase that, the worst time in my life. I was your typical 16 year old junior with a lot going for him. Tons of friends, minimal responsibility, and a car. Now high school is a fun place, for the most part. You go and goof around for 4 years, make new friends, date tons of girls, and make the best of it. Well for me, I was doing all of those things, without a single care in the world. Coasting through life, really not caring about much, or for anyone else. My life was mine and I was gonna live it "without regret" (which was my motto at the time...) Well as if this carefree life couldn't get any better, I had a girlfriend, which I thought was good. Yeah... it wasn't.

Here, let me give you a background of my faith, since this is a testimony and it's important to explain every detail of it. Well... there wasn't one. Which in my opinion was why everything in my life came crashing down on me. Now in the bible it says something along the lines of, a wise man builds his house on the rock while Dalton Larson builds his on sand. (Matthew 7:24-27) My name obviously isn't in the bible but the point is, my foundation, my life, was not built on the rock which is God. And through the storms, troubles, and everything in my life, eventually soiled the sand until the house collapsed. So that was my life, and of course I didn't know it was heading in that direction until God finally slapped me across the face and woke me up.

Now the story goes; at the end of my junior year, I was finally devastated by that gloomy realization that I had put all my eggs into one basket; the wrong basket. As most high school relationships end, mine did with about a week left of school. My girlfriend at the time had been lying to me and after about a year of dating had finally confessed to cheating on me...great. Everything I had put my hope in was now crushed. One thing that initially happened when I was reflecting/venting anger on my past year of wasted life was the fact that I needed God. I honestly have no idea why that thought popped up in my head. I knew that God existed I believed that there was a God; I just didn't really know him yet. Since there was now a desire in my heart to seek after God I was also faced with the grim realization that I didn't even deserve God. Through the past year, I had been overwhelmed by sin, and by sin I mean everything, anger, greed, lust, etc etc etc... "Why should God even accept me, I’m a worthless person, I have completely betrayed Him, why...?" The verse that I felt was Romans 3:23 "23for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God". That was the guilt I was completely consumed with for most of the weeks following the break up. I was completely lost and a completely broken human being... It took one car ride for my heart to completely break; it was as if God was trying to show me how He felt from what I had done with my life. A song came on in the car, a song from one of my favorite bands, the lyrics went something like "And on my knees, I wept at Your feet and finally believed that You still love me." I immediately broke down crying... those words were straight from God. Because this whole time I was so lost and confused and didn't even believe that God could still love a person like me. A couple days after that I went to the Wednesday night youth group at Horizon's Community Church and that night completely changed my life. We worshipped and for me it was the most intense worship I had ever experienced, I was seeking after God so hard and I finally felt His love for me. The rest of Romans 3 was revealed to me that night, not literally but I had finally understood what God was all about, "24 Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. 25 For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin." And that night I learned what it meant to be "Born-Again". My youth group challenged me with the question "Are you Born Again? Do you know what it means?" And of course I had never even heard of the term and I thought that you can get to heaven if you are baptized or whatever... well I was wrong. John 3:3 stated that "unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”

So of course I wanted to be Born-Again because I learned that Christ is the only way to salvation and everlasting life. (John 3:16) A huge part of my testimony comes from that small group on Wednesday nights, (SGROUP!) God led me to that place; He helped me get up off the couch that night instead of just skipping it and playing video games instead. God does exist, God loves me for who I am, I don't need to feel guilty for the sins I have committed in my life (Romans 8). Because God with his unconditional and everlasting love has set me free from the selfish life I no longer live. No one could ever write me a big enough check to return to my former life...not even all the money in the world because chances are that check would probably bounce anyways. Thanks for reading and God Bless.



Guest written by Dalton Larson

To join a group of Christian business professionals who want to guide the next generation of Christian small business owners and professionals go to www.goodfaithpeople.ning.com.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Playground Rules: Part 1 – Nicknames



Playground Rules: Part 1 – Nicknames

Usually I write a Bible devotional that is taken from my morning personal time with the good Lord, but today I was inspired by an exchange that happened in church on Sunday. The whole reason I am writing at all is because I was challenged by my spiritual mentor/teacher. One day while eating lunch with him…my treat…he said that I should start writing. I had never written anything before so of course it seemed like a silly idea at the time. However, as with many messages that are indirectly from God, seemed to make perfect sense when I extracted my opinion from the decision making process. This man is about 130 years old, an ex-preacher, and has written about 5000 books. So, I affectionately call him “Old Man.” As his family was walking into church, his beautiful wife leaned over to me and said, “I don’t really like the name ‘Old Man’”. Shocking? No. Typically, nicknames are a tradition between guys, not gals. It is not the first time a “she” did not like her “he” being referred to as anything other than his real name. I’ll return to the Old Man and his wife after I address this issue corporately. This conversation made me think of a few unwritten, de-facto rules about nicknames as dictated by the playground. Most of this is just understood by most guys, but I’ll try and explain for all those women out there who don’t like nicknames.

1. Nicknames can come from several places, but the most popular are derivatives of the person’s actual name, exaggerated physical characteristics, and one time embarrassing events.
a. John Schmidt, might be Schmitty.
b. If John is losing his hair, he might be the Human Forehead.
c. If John forgot to wear pants, he might be Long John.

2. Nicknames are not given to one’s self. If you don’t like your nickname, you are pretty much stuck. In fact if you try to change your own nickname, you will make it much worse. Watch the Seinfeld episode when George wanted to be called “T-Bone.”

3. Nicknames are permanent. Once your buddies call you the Human Forehead, it will be there to stay. There is only one cure to this and that is to move to a new state and get new friends. This will only keep the lid on the situation for a while though. You know what they say; it is a small world…

If you don’t like these rules, I’m afraid there is nothing that can be done. Once it is established on the playground, it is in stone. Oh sure you can ask people to change and send them to sensitivity training, but you cannot beat the playground. The playground is reality and law, the rest is wishful thinking. Better to embrace it and learn to cope. Dads teach your kids all about the playground before it is too late…

Now back to the Old Man… His name is Glen Pease. Not much to work with there for option #1. I would meet with him on Tuesdays to do some Bible lessons, so for a while I tried “Tuesday’s with Peasey,” (Tuesday’s with Morrie) but that sounded a little girly. I don’t know any one time story that would give me good idea to make use of #3. He is pretty normal looking, so the best I could come up with was “Old Man.”

…special note to the Old Man’s beautiful wife…

When I call your husband “Old Man,” it is not a statement to his age. It is more like a respectful salute to his experience and wisdom. It is like homage to a weathered sailor who is a master at his craft. Like “The Old Man and the Sea.” Each time I say it, it says, “You are the teacher, I am the student,” “you have earned the respect of your braves like the ancient tribe’s elder.” With the rules of the playground in place, and the fact that his name is an accolade, maybe you could reconsider; just think about, maybe, accepting the name? Read rule number 2 above. It is bad if the person with the nickname asks his buddies to change it, but what do you think happens to the kid on the playground who has his woman ask???

But tell you what… I suppose I owe the Old Man a favor… If you still don’t like it after reading this, I will break the rules of the playground and change it…
Hmmm, maybe …Gray Hair Glen…



Written by Chris Vasecka

To dig deeper into the scripture as explained by the “Old Man,” go to http://www.scribd.com/glennpease


To join a group of Christian business professionals who want to guide the next generation of Christian small business owners and professionals go to www.goodfaithpeople.ning.com.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Luke 7:1-10, “How should powerful people approach Jesus?” A Bible Study Devotion.


Luke 7:1-10, “How should powerful people approach Jesus?” A Bible Study Devotion.

Read Luke 7:1-10

The Bible is filled with examples of poor people, sick people, and lower people on the totem of society approaching Jesus in humility and begging for his grace. They come with a humble heart, acknowledging Jesus’ greatness and their un-greatness. There are examples of them coming for the sake of others. This is how the poor and lowly approach Jesus, but how should the healthy, wealthy, and powerful people approach Jesus? Let’s look to scripture.

Jump all the way to verse 9 to see what Jesus says about this man, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” Wow! That’s pretty high praise. What did the man do to deserve such and accolade from the creator of the world? He showed three things that we can learn from; reverence, humility, and compassion.

• Reverence: In verse 8 the centurion says, “for I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this on ‘Go’ and he goes; and that on ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘do this,’ and he does it.” At the end of verse 7 he says, “…But say the word and my servant will be healed.” Here the man is comparing his authority over his soldiers to Jesus’ authority over all the Earth. Remember that he is asking Jesus to heal a man who is going to die. He calls Jesus “Lord.” He knows that God spoke the world into existence, and he can speak a man to be healed. He is saying, you are God and you have authority over all things, even eminent death.

• Humility: In verse 6 and 7 the centurion says, “…Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you…” This is a powerful man in society. He has many people who listen to his orders. He has workers, soldiers, servants, and as we see in verse 3; Jewish elders follow his orders. Even the Jewish elders, (who hated the Roman intrusion over their county) stepped up to speak for the centurion. They said, “He deserves this, he loves our nation and built our synagogue.” Even though he has friendlies and hostiles who speak highly of him and listen to his authority, the centurion knows that he is not worthy of Jesus.

• Compassion: Remember the power and position that this man has on Earth. He has many people under his command. Yet in verse 2 we see that the centurion’s servant was “valued highly” by his master. This does not mean that he valued the servant’s work highly. If the man dies, the centurion can certainly go to the market place and get another servant. He is valued because he is a person that God created. The centurion knows that even though the servant works for him, they are both just people under God’s authority. If you are a boss, or business owner, or in some position of authority, learn a lesson from this man…

This is a great way to approach God with your issues: “You are God, I am not, please help my friend…” Do you have a friend who does not know Jesus? …I know the answer to that… This would be a good approach, “You are God, I am not, please help my friend…” This man told Jesus that he knew all he had to do was speak it and the servant would be healed; the servant who was dying. You have friends that are dying too. Dying a spiritual death without the saving grace of Jesus. Pray that God would speak the word and show them their sin, so they can repent…

Written by Chris Vasecka

To join a group of Christian business professionals who want to guide the next generation of Christian small business owners and professionals go to www.goodfaithpeople.ning.com.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Luke 6:46-49, “Why does God have so many rules?” A Bible Study Devotion.


Luke 6:46-49, “Why does God have so many rules?” A Bible Study Devotion.

Read Luke 6:46-49

The story of the two builders has a lot of different lessons. There are many observations that come from the story; here is one of my favorite: Verse 46 says, “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” In other words, both of these home builders consider themselves Christians. Both of them believe they have a saving relationship with Jesus. Both call him “Lord,” yet they both don’t do what he says to do. Guess what. Jesus tells you what to do for your own benefit. I’ll repeat that, Jesus tells you what to do for your own benefit. If you can learn this one lesson, it can change your life. You will no longer see God as a tyrant who makes rules to make your life miserable. You will see him as a loving parent who guides your path because he wants what is best for you.

What do the houses have in common?

• They were both built by house builders. The story does not say that one was built by a carpenter and the other by a bread maker. It is assumed that both builders knew how to build their house, but one cut corners. It says that both builders “heard” Jesus’ word, but one chose to ignore them.

• Both houses were going to see a storm. Jesus never says, “Follow me, and all your troubles will be gone….” it is not a question of “if” you will see storms in your life. It is only a question of “when.” In each case, the houses were hit with a storm. One was able to stand firm, and one was destroyed.

• Both houses look the same on the outside. This is a great nugget…. You cannot see the foundation of a house. If you drive down the street and look at the homes, you have no idea if they have solid foundations. The same is true with the people next to you in church. You don’t know if they have built their “homes” on the foundation of Christ’s teaching.

What is different about these houses?

• The material that is under the surface. One of these houses is built on the ground. One of them is built on a solid foundation of bedrock (Jesus’ teaching.) Remember that Jesus is not limited by time. (See my post, “God’s Helicopter view times two.” While it may seem like it goes against everything that you have learned so far in life, you must have faith that God knows what is best for you and can see the “whole” picture.

• The time that it took to build these houses. What is faster, doing the quick job, or doing the job the right way? What is better? This is obvious on paper, but do you practice it too? Imagine the one builder sitting in a lawn chair in front of his finished house sipping a cool drink while the other builder is still in the hole in the ground working on the foundation. Building on Jesus’ teaching takes more time; it’s harder work. However, Jesus says it will be worth it when it matters? Do you trust him?

Learn this lesson…

Jesus tells you what to do for your own benefit.

Why does God tell people not to have sex before marriage? Is it because he is mean? Is it because he does not understand relationships in the year 2010? Or… Is it because he wants you to know if you have a relationship without sex? Which one takes more time? Which one is harder to do? Which one is built on a solid foundation? Which one is more likely to survive a storm?

Why does God tell people not to lie? Is it because he wants to give your competition a leg up? Is it because he does not understand life or business in the year 2010? Or… is it because he understands that a lie is a prison that needs more and more lies to keep up. Do you want to be slave to a lie? Are you smart enough to remember what you said to every person? Can telling the truth be harder? Which one is built on a solid foundation? Which one is more likely to survive a storm?

Why does God want you to give the first 10% of your income to the local church? Is it because God “needs” your money? Is it because God does not understand finances in the year 2010? Or… is it because this is the way that God can teach you to not worship money. What does God say about the love of money? Does it seem logical to give away money? Which one is built on a solid foundation? Which one is more likely to survive a storm?

How am I saved? I repent and put my trust in Jesus… what does that mean, to trust in Jesus? Does it mean to do what he says even if it does not make sense according to what you have learned in this world? Which one takes more time? Which one is harder to do? Which one is built on a solid foundation? Which one is more likely to survive a storm?

Written by Chris Vasecka

To join a group of Christian business professionals who want to guide the next generation of Christian small business owners and professionals go to www.goodfaithpeople.ning.com.

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Easter Story as told by my 7 year old daughter





John 3:3, “You MUST be born again…” (Part 2) A Bible Study Devotion.


John 3:3, “You MUST be born again…” (Part 2) A Bible Study Devotion.

Read John 3:3. In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.”

If you did not read part one of this blog, go to the link at the bottom and read that one first. I had a lot of comments from people wanting to know what happened to those boys. I will get to that, but first we need to answer this question. "What does it mean to be born again?" This is not an easy thing to put into words. It is one of those deals where you know it if you are, but don't if you're not...sometimes... The biggest reason for this is that to be born again is not just a state of mind. It is not just a different way to look at life. It is not something that just you alone can decide to be. And if you don't believe at all in Jesus, you can't possibly understand what it means to be born again. How do I know? The Bible says so of course. 1 Corinthians 1:18, For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. So what is it?

To be born again is an actual spiritual re-birth. What I mean is, your old self is dead, buried, and your new self is reborn into God's family. This is real stuff, not metaphors. This is a supernatural event that can only happen after acknowledgement of sin, repentance, and grace from Jesus. Maybe I can explain it with a couple of examples. When I became born again, I had a weight lifted off my shoulders as if it were floating into the air. I don't mean I felt less stress; I mean a physical weight was taken from my shoulders. This weight was my pride and feeling of superiority towards other people. It was only through the convicting power of the Holy Spirit that I was able to see myself for what I actually was. I was just another person who had sinned against God. There was nothing special about me. I was not better than those other people that I looked down upon with disgust. You see I had a huge problem with arrogance. Being smart was my false god; one of them anyway. I would look at people as if they were dumb and always in my way. Looking back it still can make me sick to my stomach when I think about my arrogance. However, Jesus took all that hate away from me. He set me free. John 8:32, Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free. That was the weight that was lifted from me. And it was physical and real; it was not an "emotional weight." Sound crazy and stupid you unbeliever? I know it does because...see verse above.

But even if you can't grasp that example, listen to this one. This is one of the guy’s stories from the group. Remember Jeff Spicoli from Fast Times at Ridgemont High? "Hey bud, let's party, and All I need are some tasty waves, a cool buzz, and I'm fine.” I had the equivalent of that kid in my class. Every word from his mouth was "Ahh, dude... like this, like that, like, like, like..." Long story short, he became born again. Soon after that, he was helping teach. He had Biblical wisdom of a seasoned vet. He was calm, thoughtful, and wise. Did you hear that...wise. This did not take two years of study. It did not even take two months of study. It was immediate. How could this be? Because when you are born again, it is a supernatural event that can only be accomplished by God. Proverbs 1:7, The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline. Some might say the wisdom was in him all along; it was not... That surfer boy was gone. He was reborn into God's family. But it wasn't just that. He looked different. It was in his eyes and in his facial expressions. It was a different person. Believe me or not, it is the truth. Galatians 2:20, I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me.

That is just one snippet from one of the boy's stories. There were several boys in that group. They are all in their first year of college now. I keep track of all of them. Keep tabs on this blog if you want to hear about the others. I will ask one or two of them to write their story from their own hand.

John 3:3, “You MUST be born again…” (Part 1)



Written by Chris Vasecka

To join a group of Christian business professionals who want to guide the next generation of Christian small business owners and professionals go to www.goodfaithpeople.ning.com.