Looking unto Jesus
Heb 12:1-3 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
It is easy to become distracted with the things that we face in our daily lives. It is easy to become discouraged with the things that are constantly going on around us. We find that as the years go by we can lose anything that we have. There is nothing sure in this world but our exit one day. We will die one day.
Life is uncertain
Death is sure
Sin is the cause
Christ is the cure.
About the only thing that is sure in this life is that it will end one day. You can lose your health in a moment. You can lose your children. You can lose you mate, your wealth and your friends. But, I’m glad, THANK GOD! There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. He has promised “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” He told His disciples in Matthew 28, “Lo, I am with you alway,” I’m glad to have a great encourager that I can depend upon. I’ve got help in time of need, when men forsake me I have One who will take me up.
When we are discouraged and doubtful we must remember…..
I. He is the ground of our acceptance before God.
I am so glad to know that we have one that we can count on at all times, in all places, regardless of circumstance or environment. We have an ever present help in time of need. He is there…
When we are discouraged and doubtful. There are times in our lives of great discouragement, and great doubt. Both of these are our own fault and are instigated by the devil. Satan discourages us. He will make us doubt God’s ability to help us through, to bless us, to protect us. Yes, at times he will get on your back and try to ride you to the ground.
One of the ways that Satan discouraged us is by reminding us of our past failures. He will bring up things in our past that we thought we had put behind us. You don’t deserve to go to heaven? You ought to have been in hell a long time ago. What makes you think that you are worthy to be a child of God? What makes you think that you are worthy of heaven, of salvation? I remember what you did back here when I had you. I remember how you lived when I had you. You were vile! Wicked! Filthy! Surely you don’t think that God would forgive you for all that you have done. We thought that we had moved on and we have been living in victory and joy in The Lord. Then, one day, the devil will find some little secret about our past and parade it before us. Isn’t it amazing how that he knows just what to tempt us with. He knows where we have been. He knows what we have been up too. He knows what troubles us. As a child of God Satan knows that we hate some things, that some things hurt us, that some things can get us distracted. And he will use everything that he can dig up in your past to get at you and get you down. Sometimes he sits and laughs at us because we find ourselves reminded of where we used to be, what we used to be doing, how undeserving we are. We will get down on ourselves, discouraged and troubled, then, if we are not careful we will quit on God. That is just what the devil is after. He wants to rob us of our joy, the joy of The Lord’s salvation, and when he robs us of that joy, he can make us stop walking, he can make us sit down, and if we are not careful we will just die on God and never do anything else for His Honour and His Glory.
It is at times like this that we need to be reminded that we need to keep looking at what God looks at. Focus on the things that God focuses on. When God looks at me, He see’s Jesus. When God looks at me, saved, washed clean by the Blood of Jesus, He see’s Jesus. I am His precious son through the Precious Blood that was shed at Calvary. Praise God! When He looks at me, He does not see the sin that once stained my soul, He does not see the hell deserving sinner that I once was. No friend,
when God looks at me He see’s one of His. I am glad that God sees
1. One that Christ died for
2. One that is atoned for
3. One that is redeemed
4. One for whom Christ bore the curse
5. One to whom is imputed the Righteousness of the Blessed Saviour
Praise God it is just like the song says;
Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe,
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.
When we become discouraged we must look to Jesus and remember the work that He finished on the Cross. Believe the word of God, that the sin which troubles us was laid on Him. Thank God that the sin question is settled!
R.A. Torrey said, “It is an act of base ingratitude to God to brood over sins that He in His infinite love has canceled. Keep looking at Christ on the cross and walk always in the sunlight of God’s favour. This favor of God has been purchased for you at Great Price. Gratitude demands that you should always believe in it and walk in the light of it.”
Poor Mary was discouraged in John 11 at the tomb of Lazarus. She told the Lord, “if you had been here, he would not have died.” She could not see past her circumstances. Though the God of all creation was standing before her, she was discouraged, blinded by her circumstances. Oh, friend, when you are discouraged, look unto Jesus.
When we are tempted or defeated we must remember that…..
II. He rose from the dead, lived, and has all power, therefore He can give you the victory.
Many times in temptation or defeat we forget that we are not in this fight alone. When the devil gets our eyes off of Jesus that is when he can get our minds off of Jesus and that is when we are easily defeated. If we would just remind ourselves some times about just who we are, who we belong too and in whose hand the battle is, then we could enjoy the victory at times that the world may see no help or hope in sight. I am glad to know that Jesus has defeated every enemy that I will ever have to face. He won the victory for me, and to live a life of defeat is to show dishonor to Him and what He has done for me.
The greatest part of all of this is the fact that He can give me victory right now. I don’t have to wait. I know that sometimes we might have to wait for answers to prayer. God sometimes teaches His children patience through the waiting for things that they have prayed for. But this victory is far greater that the things that we pray for. We could not have imagined this victory. Our own finite minds could not have dreamed up all that God has done for us. Only the mind of an Omniscient and Omnipotent God could have conceived so great an idea as the victory that we have in Christ. We can face whatever comes our way in this life in the victory if we will just trust God that He has only our best interest in heart and claim that precious truth that “all things work together for good to them that love God, for them that are the called according to His purpose.” That victory is ever present with is and the Holy Spirit that lives within us will remind us of it at times. Keep looking at this life and it’s circumstances as an outsider. We do not belong here. We are strangers and pilgrims here. We are in the fight, but we are fighting “from” the victory, and not “for” the victory.
It is by looking to Jesus that we obtain the victory over sin on a daily basis. It is in looking unto Jesus that we have peace, even when we fail. If you have fallen into temptation you can look to Calvary, confess your sins, and know the you are forgiven.
Victory! No Greater Victory!
When we find ourselves confused and anxious we must look to Jesus
III. For Direction
When we don’t know which way we should go. He says “Follow Me.”
We are to walk as He walked (1Jn 2:6). One of the most common mistakes of Christians is following some man that they greatly admire. There is nothing wrong with admiration of an individual who has reached, or accomplished some position or goal that is noteworthy. But men are bound to go astray, and we, if we are not careful, are likely to follow. There has only been one Man who never went astray and He is the one we should follow. Men who influence us to good may also influence us to evil. We must follow Jesus.
When you come to a place in your life that you don’t know what to do, Look to Jesus. Study your bible to find out what He did. Try and imagine what He would do, and follow Him. Though you may be the only one who goes in the right way, follow Jesus and you will never go wrong. You may be criticized, pushed aside, looked over or worked around by the rest of the World, but one day, your faithfulness will be rewarded.
I remember when Peter asked Jesus about John. He asked, (paraphrasing) Lord, what is he gonna do? And Jesus asked Peter, “What is that to you? Follow me.”
We are not to be so concerned about what our following Jesus will mean to others, but what it means to God. The simple life is following Jesus, not good men, ideas or movements, but Jesus.
Don’t waste too much time criticizing others for not following. “Lord what about what they are doing?” What is that to you? Follow Him.
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