Archive for the ‘Celebrate Recovery’ Category

What Makes the Good News

The Good News

The Gospel is called the Good News, ever wonder why? With all the evil that’s going on in the world, is there really good news. What is the Good News and what is not the Good News? John 3:16 says, For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son. That who so ever believe in him shall nor parish but have eternal life.

Romans 5:8 says, But God demonstrates his own love for us in this, while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Romans 10:9 says, That if you confess with your mouth” Jesus Is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

The Good News refers specifically to the Gospel of Salvation. The Apostle Paul writes in Romans 1:16-17, I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew then for the Gentile. 17. For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written, “The righteous will live by faith.”

You know there is a lot of things going on in this world and a lot of circumstances that are out of our control. There is also a lot of evil going on in this world and have you ever felt like there was no hope around? What if you lived a good long life and you got to the end of your days and let’s say you looked out into the world and said is this it? Is there nothing else? Or what about this. You go to the doctor and he reveals your check-up results to be that you have a terminal illness and you wonder what’s next? Create a situation or scenario of any kind and I bet you can find one out there in the world that is happening at any given time. Just pick one and ask do they have hope of something else, is there an afterlife? I tell you what, how about this. You are professing Christian and one thing after another keeps bombarding you and you can’t seem to get up on your feet to save your life. You start battling depression or a chemical addiction of some sort, you have no money to pay your bills and don’t know where your next meal is going to come from. Or maybe you are just down on your luck and can’t seem to find any help or support and therefore have no hope. You’ve lost your way in life and need a friend but have no one to turn to. Is there really any hope out there, somewhere, anywhere? Then someone approach’s you with what they call the Good News and you ask yourself is there any real Good News?

We call the Good News, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and it really is the Good News. For anyone looking to have any hope in their life, Jesus Christ is the hope for a new way to live and therefore is the good news. You see Jesus came to this earth with a message for all who have lost their way or are in some way broken or lost. He came to save mankind. Are you asking why this Jesus came to save mankind? Well let me tell you. The world (the people) is lost and without hope. When I say lost and without hope, I mean living separated from the Creator of the universe. If you were to die in a separated condition, apart from God, you would be eternally hopeless and therefore separated from God FOREEVER. See the world is sinful and sin by definition is an offense or transgression against the law of God. An offense against moral law, Gods law. In essence it means missing the mark.

Now let’s get something straight. You don’t have to be living an evil or wicked live to be lost or broken. You can be the nicest, most compassionate person or be a type of person that is a giver, that does right and kind things for humanity and people and still be lost and without hope. You see Jesus came to save us and free us from the bondage of sin. Jesus died on the cross, was buried and rose to life three days later to give us salvation. All those that believe in Jesus will be saved and have eternal life. This my friends is the Good News. The Good News for me is that I believe that when I die I will live eternally with Christ. And there’s even more Good News. That life until I die, I can live free of guilt and shame and no longer have to live a life defeated against anything. Now that my friends is the GOOD NEWS.

Now I’m free to live. Does that mean I don’t sin, no I do sin but what I do is I repent of that sin and live my life for Christ. Repent means to turn from sin and confess it to Christ to be forgiven. You see in 1 John 1:9 it says If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. Now that my friends are a promise and is good news.

I have an analogy I like to use: when we get saved it’s like and old weather beaten and worn book. The outside is my shell and the inside are my life, you could say my story. What Jesus did on the cross is that God took out my story and replaced it with Jesus’ story so the when God now looks at me He sees the righteousness of Christ not all my old baggage. What He does is He takes my story and turns it in to Christ’s story for Christ sake. I mean to tell you, if that isn’t good news I don’t know what is.

1 Peter 3:15 says Always be prepared to give an answer for the hope that lies in you. The hope I have is what Jesus did to save me and change my life. He changed my heart from the inside out. I was a hopeless dope fiend, my sin was drugs, women, motorcycles and whiskey. I even had a dog but most of the time I was the dog. I walk on people, hurt people and sold out the people that were closest to me, even my wife. Hurt people hurt people. I was living without hope even while having a life in the church, but while I was in the process of using up and losing everything in my life that meant anything to me Christ met me in my sin, right where I was at. I was praying, and I know a whole lot of people were praying on my behalf and my prayer was to have a desire to really know God while others were praying that I would change, and Christ started to do a work in my heart. He took away the drugs, everything changed. I started wanting to know Christ again and got deeper in studying the Bible. One thing I never stopped doing was I never stopped going to Celebrate Recovery, which pointed me to the healer which is Jesus Christ. John 8:31-32 says To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, ”If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” My friends I have freedom today. Freedom from guilt and shame, free to live without worry. I still screw up but I don’t quit any longer. I do my best to persevere no matter how hard it gets and when I get knocked down and I really do get knocked down, guess who picks me up. My Lord picks me up, He is so faithful even when I’m not. God loves me and I know it. I have a new identity today and it’s not me. My identity is, I’m a child of God and Christ is my identity. I am who He says I am and I’m loved by God.

 

 

© Copyright By Bart Hickey, All Rights Reserved 2018

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I Commit My Soul To You

Lord I commit my soul to You

It’s thru You love that carries me thru

If I die before I wake

I pray my Lord my soul You take

As You give me Your very best

I know I have to endure the tests

It’s my life I offer You

Help me to not live in eskew

If you give me just one more day

I vow to live and follow Your ways

As I enter into rest tonight

I pray you watch over me this night

I’m learning Father to follow love

Thankful that You’re interceding from above

Your not just Savior, Your my Guide

It’s Your love that runs deep and wide

It’s Your presence I stand in Awe

All because you love me God

He called me out of the grave

From the sin in which I was enslaved

I’m now alive and free to live

All my sins He did forgive

He is my rock in which I stand

Now my life has a plan

My life has purpose as I live

A servants heart is what I give

Ask me how and this I say

He said, follow Me I know the way

I looked around, then counted the cost

I knew just then how I was lost

He said, on the cross I paid for sin

I knew right then the mess I was in

He changed my heart from inside out

He held me near when I was in doubt

He freed my soul from the devils grip

Now I’m free for the Lord to equip

Even though I am still flawed

Freed by Love from my God

I once was dead, now I’m saved

It was Christ who called me out of the grave

© Copyright By Bart Hickey, All Rights Reserved, 2011-2018

Our Savior was hung on a criminals cross

Dying for all, forgiving who’s lost

He was born by the Spirit, yet walked as a man

Walking in obedience, He completed God’s plan

He is the reconciliation between man and God

He is our redemption since man has been flawed

Let’s rejoice in our sorrow and rejoice in our pain

He came as our Savior, Forever He’ll reign

He is Alpha, Omega, the Beginning and End

After the ascension, His Spirit He did send

I stand in amazement, I stand in awe

He takes me as I am, with all of my flaws

I rejoice in sadness, I rejoice when in fear

I know I can call out, He draws me in near

I submit to His Lordship, I submit to my God

I’ll forever be His, He’ll forever be awed

I stand in His mercy, I’m saved by His grace

He is my strength to persevere in this race

He called me out of darkness, into the light

I answered His call, I walked away from my plight

He offered me freedom, He set me apart

It’s a new life He gives right from the start

I’m sealed by His Spirit, forever His child

All because of Jesus I have been reconciled

© Copyright By Bart Hickey, All Rights Reserved, 2011-2018