My Jesus, I Love Thee:: By Nathele Graham

Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come before him: worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness(1 Chronicles 16:29).

Why do you call yourself a Christian? Do you truly love Jesus, or do you just belong to Club Baptist or Club Methodist? Christianity isn’t found in any denomination but is only found in belief in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Do you love Him? Do you love what He did for you? Sin separates us from God and brings eternal death. Faith in Jesus is the only way for redemption and salvation.

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).

That means without faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross, there is no salvation. God doesn’t want anybody to spend eternity in the lake of fire but wants all to come to salvation. That salvation is only through Jesus Christ. I’m so thankful for what Jesus did on the cross and for my salvation. Are you? Do you love Him? If you do love Him, then follow Him. Scripture is our guide. Don’t take verses out of context in order to justify your favorite sin. You only fool yourself; you cannot fool God. If you love Him, let Him know.

MY JESUS, I LOVE THEE

My Jesus, I love thee, I know thou art mine;
For thee all the follies of sin I resign;
My gracious Redeemer, my Savior art thou;
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

It’s easy to get discouraged when we look at the next generation. They seem so far from God and so lost. Many people, both young and old, hold very tightly to sin, and many are mentally unsound, believing they are animals or are confused as to whether they are male or female. It’s easy to tell humans from animals and to tell male from female, but there is a strong delusion that is gripping the world. On the other hand, there are youngsters who have their feet firmly planted on the firm foundation of Jesus Christ. They are blessed with parents who care.

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it(Proverbs 22:6).

The parents of William Ralph Featherstone trained their son well. In the mid-1800s, young Mr. Featherstone gave his life to Jesus. Even though he was very young, his faith was solid. He wrote a poem when he was 12 or 16 (there is a question of just how young he was). That poem found its way to Adoniram Judson Gordon, who put it to music, and it has become a very beloved hymn. Mr. Featherstone is an example to all of us. You’re never too young nor too old to accept Jesus. We never know when we will die, and faith in Jesus should never be delayed. You need to be able to make your own decision. You must understand that you’re a sinner, confess your sin to Jesus, and believe in Him (babies cannot do that, so infant baptism will not bring salvation).

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved(Romans 10:9).

William R. Featherstone died before he turned 27. That is a very young age to die, but it would have been tragic if he hadn’t turned his life over to Christ.

Mr. Featherstone knew exactly who Jesus is. He also knew that a Christian cannot hold onto sin. Have you resigned from the follies of your sin? If you say you’ve repented and turned to Jesus, then sin must not continue.

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new(2 Corinthians 5:17).

The sin that condemned you and separated you from God is gone, forgiven and forgotten. That is, it’s gone if you have truly repented. If you have, then you’re forgiven. You’re redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

I love thee because thou hast first loved me
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree;
I love thee for wearing the thorns on thy brow;
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

Many pastors only preach about the love of God, which is perfect love, but they don’t talk about sin and how ugly it is.

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord(Romans 6:23).

Eternal death isn’t something you should take lightly. It was pure love that caused Jesus to lay down His life for our redemption.

We love him because he first loved us(1 John 4:19).

The crucifixion was brutal. First, He faced an illegal trial, then was beaten and scourged. This alone would have killed a lesser man. They mocked Him and put a crown of thorns on His head.

And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him saying, Hail, King of the Jews!(Matthew 27:29).

Do you mock Him today by claiming He is your Saviour while living a sinful life?

If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love(John 15:10).

We cannot love Him if we don’t keep His commandments. If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

I’ll love thee in life, I will love thee in death,
And praise thee as long as thou lendest me breath,
And say when the deathdew lies cold on my brow:
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

Death is a certainty for everybody. Mr. Featherstone lived a very short life, but he will always be remembered for his love for Jesus because of this hymn. Not everybody will be able to write a poem that is a hymn of praise, but we all touch other people’s lives. Do you honor Christ in all that you do?

And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him(Colossians 3:17).

There aren’t many people today who do all things to honor Christ. What do you do to honor Him? I know that I fail many times by not sharing the Gospel when I have an opportunity. Do you gossip while wearing a cross necklace? Do you have a bumper sticker proclaiming your faith but let other drivers get you angry? Life here is too short not to represent Christ well. You will never desire to show Him your love more than as you lie on your deathbed. Don’t wait; show Him your love today by living for Him. If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

In mansions of glory and endless delight,
I’ll ever adore thee in heaven so bright;
I’ll sing with the glittering crown on my brow:
If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

The glory of Heaven is disclosed in Scripture. I don’t think that words can describe it entirely. All of creation was spoken into existence in seven literal days. There is much beauty here. Before Jesus was arrested, He had a talk with His disciples.

Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me, In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know (John 14:1-4).

In Jewish weddings of that day, the man would ask the woman to marry him, then he would go to his father’s home and build a place for him and his bride to live. Jesus has chosen His bride… the ekklesia (Christians). He has returned to His Father’s house and is building a place for us to live with Him forever. Revelation chapter 21 describes the New Jerusalem, and it is breathtaking. Streets of gold, gates of pearl, and walls of precious stones.

And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof(Revelation 21:23).

I can hardly wait for Jesus to call His bride Home. In order to spend eternity here, you need to give your life to Christ. Repent of your sin, turn from it, and ask Jesus to forgive you. He will. If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

Time is running out. If you haven’t turned to Jesus for salvation, don’t put it off. Begin your new life in Christ and live for Him. You won’t regret it. If you choose to put off repenting, and continue in your sin, you may never have a chance to repent. Death is only a heartbeat away, and nobody is promised tomorrow. If you have accepted Christ but aren’t living for Him, then ask yourself if you really love Him.

If ye love me, keep my commandments(John 14:15).

Remember, He loved you long before you were even born. He took your sin to the cross, shed His blood for your salvation, and loves you today.

Do you love Him? If ever I loved thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

God bless you all,

Nathele Graham
twotug@embarqmail.com

Recommended prophecy sites:

www.raptureready.com
www.prophecyupdate.com
www.raptureforums.com

All original scripture is “theopneustos,” God-breathed.

If you would like to be on my mailing list to receive the commentaries, just drop me an email and let me know.

“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee” (Psalm 122:6).

Fruit-Bearing Faith :: By Nathele Graham

Fruit trees are beautiful. They look very dreary until Spring comes and they burst with leaves and flowers. That’s only the start. As the year progresses, fruit begins to form, and each tree will bring forth delicious, nourishing fruit. Before we come to faith in Jesus, life can be pretty dreary. Each day is just like the previous day, with no true joy. You might have had good things in your life but no true joy. The reason for this is your life was as dreary as a fruit tree in winter. You were following the ways of the world, where there is nothing to look forward to except a dreary lifestyle.

Jesus Christ and the promise of Heaven is joyful, and like a fruit tree in Spring, life becomes beautiful. Life has a purpose when Christ is on the throne of your life.

Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour” (Ephesians 5:1-2).

The Apostle Paul knew what he was talking about. He was a very smart man and a member of the Sanhedrin. His father was a Pharisee, and so was he. The Pharisees were a Jewish religious sect that knew the Law of God but not the grace and love of God. When Jewish people began to follow the teachings of Christ, Paul’s hatred burned. He was feared among the Christians because of his anger. Then, he met Jesus and his life was changed forever.

Paul had been on his way to Damascus to arrest Christians who had fled there to escape persecution, but God intervened. In a miraculous turn of events, Paul met the risen Saviour, and he was given a new outlook on life. It took many years, but eventually, he was called to missionary work. Unlike many modern-day “missionaries,” Paul spread the Gospel and established congregations. He taught God’s truth. His life suddenly had a deeper meaning and a purpose; his anger and hatred were gone.

Not everybody has such a dramatic call to faith as Paul, but everyone has a calling that is important to use for God. Paul urges us to follow God and walk in the love of God.

In the letter to the Ephesians, Paul addresses spiritual warfare and how to be ready for battle. You cannot be ready to battle the enemy if you are walking hand in hand with his evil.

But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks” (Ephesians 5:3-4).

Sadly, many churches don’t disciple new Christians in their new-found faith, and preachers don’t want to upset the pew-sitters by addressing sin. That should not stop you from opening your Bible and letting the Holy Spirit guide you in living a Christian life.

For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them” (Ephesians 5:5-7).

This is very important for every Christian to understand. Don’t let yourself be deceived by anyone. There are leaders in the mega-church movement, as well as in small country congregations, that don’t preach Biblically sound truths but try to say that God knows hearts, so it’s not up to us to judge. That’s not what Scripture says.

Sin is clearly listed in Scripture. There is a fine line between being legalistic and living in the light of God. Jesus was harshly judged by the religious leaders for healing a man on the Sabbath. He pointed out that they knew the letter of the Law but not the heart.

If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day? Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment” (John 7:23-24). 

Even though circumcision would be “working on the Sabbath,” it was required by law, so deemed as permissible on the Sabbath. Jesus healed a man and was criticized for His compassion. The Pharisees deemed this as works. Judging by appearance is never right, but using Scripture to judge righteously is important. Sin is not acceptable within congregations, so yes, it must be judged with a righteous judgment.

To live a fruitful life in Christ, the fruit we bear is our faithful service to Jesus and, hopefully, soul-winning. If we say we accepted Christ but remain unchanged by our faith, then we will never make a difference to the Kingdom and will remain as dreary as a fruit tree in winter.

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold all things are become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17).

If you say you are a Christian, do you know what that means? We all are subject to our sin nature, passed down through the ages by Adam’s sin. We are separated from God. Jesus entered His creation to give us the only way to be reconciled to God. To be forgiven of our sins, we must turn to Jesus and repent. We cannot say, “I was baptized as a baby, so I’m saved.” You have to make the decision and choose to follow Christ.

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Romans 10:9).

Do you know any baby that can do that? A baby can’t, but you can. Confessing to a priest will do you no good. You must confess to Jesus and ask Him to forgive your sin. Then it’s time to start living a new life in Christ. Put off the old way of living. If you are in any sexual relationship other than a one man/one woman marriage, end that relationship immediately. If you are associating with drug users, gang members, or anyone who embraces sin, end those ties immediately.

I don’t know many pastors who disciple new Christians, and that’s sad. You have a Bible; study it. There are many, many good Bible teachers to be found. There are also many poor teachers to be avoided, such as anybody who teaches New Age beliefs or that it’s ok to hold onto your sin as long as you know Christ. If you truly know Christ, you will repent of sin and turn away from it. Read Scripture and memorize it. Then live to honor God.

How do we have a fruit-bearing faith? First, stop living a worldly life. Repent of your sin and pray for God’s help in overcoming the sin you’ve embraced. Ask a Christian friend to help you. All of us have sinned, so every Christian should be understanding about what you’re going through.

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God, being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:23-24).

Thank God for His grace. There are quite a few “lists” in Scripture that describe living in a worldly way.

Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these: Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like; of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:19-21). 

If there are words you aren’t familiar with, look them up or look in a good modern translation. For instance, the word “witchcraft” comes from the Greek “pharmakeia,” which is drugs. These are things that the world accepts as normal but are considered sins by God. When you repent of your sin, you will find new joy in life, and you will begin to show fruit of the Spirit.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23).

Notice that the worldly things are plural, “works of the flesh,” but the “fruit of the Spirit” is singular. All of the fruit of the Spirit is available to you at once, but you can’t have fruit-bearing faith if you are holding tightly to the works of the flesh.

Isn’t it time for you to begin to bear fruit? Rather than being like a dying fruit tree that is stuck in the cold, dreary winter, start living a fruit-bearing life through faith in Jesus Christ.

God bless you all,

Nathele Graham

twotug@embarqmail.com

Recommended prophecy sites:

www.raptureready.com

www.prophecyupdate.com

www.raptureforums.com

All original scripture is “theopneustos,” God-breathed.

If you would like to be on my mailing list to receive the commentaries, just drop me an email and let me know.

“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee” (Psalm 122:6).