We know that after three days, Jesus Christ was raised from the dead. He lives. And we don’t have to live a fearful, depressed, cowardly, pessimistic, defeated life.

ROBERT >> Years ago when I was a teenager, I saw a movie, Jesus Christ Superstar. Jesus was presented as this great man who did wonderful things and promised hope to an oppressed world; but the show ended with him dying a cruel death on the cross. My spirit was lifted but then completely deflated with the awful defeat of this one to whom I’d come to believe in. But though that was the end of the movie, we know that’s not the end of the story. Stay tuned. We’ll be back in just a moment.

SINGING>> Speaking the truth, speaking the truth,
speaking the truth, speaking the truth in love.

ROBERT >> Yes, we know that after three days, Jesus Christ was raised from the dead. He lives. And I don’t have to live a fearful, depressed, cowardly, pessimistic, defeated life. I can be confident and certain and sure and hopeful and bold, unafraid. I can live an accomplished, victorious life. Because he lives, because Jesus Christ lives, I know I can be confident. It was Jesus Christ who removed the guilt and the power and the fear of the condemnation of my sins. It was Jesus Christ that brought me out of my shell and that strengthened me in my weakness, that gave me courage to go ahead when I was afraid. Jesus Christ gave me a new and a greater and a positive outlook on life. Without him, I’m nothing; but by the grace of God, I am what I am. And here’s what I learned.

I learned that I can be confident in his presence always. In Matthew 28:20, we have these words recorded from Jesus, his promise: “I’ll be with you always, even to the end of the world.”

You see, I’m not alone. I don’t have to be afraid. Every moment, Jesus Christ is with me. When I was a child, sometimes I was afraid of the dark or maybe some boogeyman in the closet; but to have mom or dad come in or maybe one of my siblings to comfort me, I could rest.

I remember when Moses wouldn’t go down to Pharaoh until God sent Aaron with him. He was afraid to go alone, but if God would send somebody with him, then he would go.

Do you remember Barak, the commander of the Lord’s army you read about in Judges chapter 5?

He was afraid to go into war. He wouldn’t go into battle unless Deborah, the judge, went with him. He said, I’ll go if you’ll go. And so with Deborah by his side, he went into the battle.

A number of years ago, our family was in crisis. My son, Brian, in his mid 30’s, married, found out not only that they were going to have a child, but found out that he had Hodgkins lymphoma. Thank God we were not alone. My wife and I prayed like we had never prayed before because we had such great concern for the life of our child. And it was during that time that I really came to know and experience Isaiah 41:10. I had read it before, but now it has new meaning not only to me, but also to my son. As I sent this passage to him one day, it kind of became our passage.

Isaiah 41:10, I want to read it to you. “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”

You see, God says you don’t have to be afraid, because I’ll be with you. He says when you’re weak, I’m going to strengthen you; when you need help, I’m there to help you; when you’re falling, I’ll uphold you. God is not far from each one of us according to Acts 17:27. Just reach out to him and trust his promise, I’ll never leave you nor forsake you. So with good courage we say, The Lord is my helper, I shall not fear.

What will man do to me?

What can man do to me?

Hebrews 13:5-6 reminds us that we can be confident because of his presence always. But I also learned something else. I also learned that I can be confident in his power unimaginable.

In Ephesians 3:20, listen to these words from the apostle Paul here about the power of God that works in us. Here he says that “God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or imagine according to the power that works in us.”

That same power that was demonstrated in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, that power that is more powerful than Satan, more powerful than sin, more powerful than death, we have that great power working in us.

When we come up against problems and difficulties and the trials in our life, we need to remember that the Bible says in Hebrews 6:13 concerning God, there is no greater. Nothing and no one is greater than our God.

In Romans 8:31 the apostle Paul asked, “If God is for us, who is against us? ”

Because you see, it doesn’t matter. When you’re on God’s side, with God, we are more than conquerors, he says in verse 37 of Romans chapter 8. We’re superheroes. We can do the unimaginable. I think sometimes that we limit God because we don’t see how he could possibly do anything or help us or get us out of this situation or be the kind of God that is so powerful. We don’t understand; and we can’t do it, and so we think he can’t do it. And so we don’t trust him to do this or to do that. But the Bible says in Matthew 19:26 these very positive and encouraging words that ought to give us confidence in our heart.

Here he tells us that, “With man, it is impossible; but with God all things are possible.”

You see, God is a powerful God of unimaginable power, and God works in us, as we read in Philippians 2:12-13. Just as we saw it in Ephesians 3:20, so we see it in Philippians 2:12-13. The apostle Paul was in prison because of his faith, and he was writing back to this church in Philippi to encourage them to be obedient.

He commends them for their obedience in verse 12, writing, “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.”

You see, as we work out, Paul says, God works in us. Now, I don’t know about you. I don’t really like working out. My only workout is really on the golf course. But here he’s talking about a spiritual workout. He’s talking about a faith that obeys like the church at Philippi. As we work out, as we act on our faith, fulfilling the will of God for our life, it says that God works in us both to will and to do for his good pleasure. Yes, we will. We must make the decision. We must choose to serve God and to obey God. And we do. We must perform. But he gives us the power. He works in us. We can because he can.

As Paul said in Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”

Read this passage with me from the book of Hebrews. In Hebrews chapter 13, as we come to the end of this great book, we have this confidence. ” Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.”

Yes, because he lives, I can be confident. I have learned that I can be confident in his promises faithful. But the Lord is faithful, 2 Thessalonians 3:3, “who will establish you and guard you from the evil one. I’m not always faithful.”

I try to be faithful. My brothers and sisters in Christ are not always faithful. But Jesus Christ is. He’s always faithful. And there’s my confidence. It’s not in anyone or anything else, but in him. I can trust him in my suffering. I can trust him in my trial and problems and difficulties in life because I know, as we all know as Christians, that God works together all things for good, Romans 8:28, “to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.”

He’s working everything for good. I don’t understand what’s going on and what he’s doing, and I cannot fix things. I don’t know what to do many times; but he does. And he is able to do things that I cannot do. I can trust him in my temptations.

In 1 Corinthians 10:13, look at this wonderful promise that we have from God. Here he tells us, “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.”

No matter how difficult it may seem, he is the there to rescue me from my temptation. So instead of getting into temptation, I’m looking for God’s way out. And that’s what we must all do. This is the confidence that each of us must take to our trials, must take to our temptations. We must know that he will keep us from the evil one.

Look again at his promise in John the 10th chapter, where Jesus Christ presents himself as the good shepherd who lays down his life for the sheep, how much he loves us and how much he cares for us.

And listen to what he says in John 10:27. Here it says, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.”

No one can snatch you out of the hand of God. Jesus Christ holds you, and he’s going to keep you from the evil one. Yes, you could leave him and you can turn from him and you can walk out on him, but he never lets anyone take you from him. He is here to crown us with life eternal. He died for us, he was raised again to make that possible.

And if we’ll keep our faith and our trust in him, he forever holds us in his hand to crown us with that crown of eternal life as we read in Revelation 2:10. “Be faithful unto death, and I’ll give you the crown of life. Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord, that they may rest from their labors,” Revelation 14:13.

There’ll be a day when God will wipe away every tear from our eyes. There’ll be no more sorrow, no more crying, no more pain, no more death. All things will be new. This is the hope that sustains me, that gives me confidence. I can be confident in his promises faithful. But I can also be confident in his intercession ever. In his mediation, in his speaking to God on my behalf, being there for me, representing me before God in heaven. Let me tell you about a dear sister in Christ. She and her daughter were so close. Her daughter was in her 30’s, she had a husband, kids. She was tragically killed in a plane crash. And of course her mother was devastated. As I came by to visit in her home, her husband took me back to the room where she was; and there she was, curled up like a baby on the floor, and all she could do was groan. The apostle Paul in Romans the 8th chapter speaks of the groaning that we all experience in this world of evil and sin and trial and temptation; but he tells us something in Romans 8 that encourages us and that gives us confidence.

In Romans 8:26, “Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.”

You see, this passage tells us that when we’re groaning and when we’re hurting, when we’re in great pain, that the Holy Spirit is interceding for us before God, that he is speaking to God on our behalf with groanings which cannot be uttered.

But more than that, look at Romans the 8th chapter and verse 34. ” Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.”

Yes, we’re not only represented before God by the Holy Spirit, but also by Jesus Christ himself. He also speaks to God on our behalf.

You see, in heaven before God there is this conversation about me, about you. They know all about us, what’s going on in our heart and in our life. They know our hurt, they know our situation. They’re concerned about you and me in our suffering. I can be confident, because all of heaven is in conversation about me. And this is even more meaningful when I realize that Jesus Christ completely understands me.

Let me read to you something from Hebrews chapter 4 beginning in verse 14, where the Hebrew writer reminds us of how that Jesus, after dying and being raised, passed into the heavens.

In Hebrews 4:14, “Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. You see, this one who is interceding before God in heaven on our behalf, he understands.”

He sympathizes because he once lived in the flesh. He knows our temptations. He knows our trials. And he stands ready to give me mercy, not give me what I deserve. He stands ready to give me grace. He gives me what I do not deserve. I’m confident because he ever lives to make intercession for me.

Hebrews 7:25 tells us that “he ever lives to make intercession for us.

That’s the confidence that we have as Christians, heaven always in conversation about each one of us. But finally let me say to you today that I can be confident in his assurance certain. Took me a little while to learn this point. There was a time when I was scared whether I was going to get to heaven or not. I was always worried about if I was good enough. And I came to realize that nobody is. But it’s not about me being perfect. I’m not perfect. But it is about his perfect performance, about the perfect performance of Jesus Christ. Only because of that is it possible for me to be forgiven. He could be my substitute. He didn’t have to pay for any sins he had committed. He had committed no crimes. And so he could pay for mine. As Isaiah prophesied long before Jesus ever came, He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities. God laid upon Him the iniquity of us all. Jesus did for me what I could not do, what nobody else could do.

Only through him can I be saved. As he said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes unto the Father but by Me,” John 14:6.

I don’t deserve it. I can never earn it. I can’t even pay for one of my sins. Salvation is of grace, and I don’t have anything to boast about, as Paul said in Ephesians 2:8-9.

Let me read it to you today. Here the apostle Paul emphasizes the fact that we’re saved by grace through faith. This is how it reads: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

You see, if you believe that Jesus did that for you, if you’re trusting him for your salvation today, then you will turn from your sin, you will confess your faith, you will give yourself to him in baptism. There we die; there we’re buried; there we’re raised to live a new life, as Paul explains in Romans the 6th chapter. And as a Christian, having begun that new life, I must keep trusting and keep trying and keep being honest about my sins. If so, then I can know that I am forgiven, that I am saved. John writes about this in 1 John 1:5 and following. And I want you to notice these words of confidence before we leave today.

In 1 John 1:5, This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that “God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.”

If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. It’s that kind of trusting, believing, honest faith that is required of us. For by grace are you saved through faith. Notice in chapter 2 of 1 John, it says in verse 1, My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.

Yes, that one who died for the sins of the world stands with me. He is my advocate. He represents me before God. He pleads my case. And having already paid for my crimes, he can never lose my case. And so John will tell us in chapter 5 and verse 13, These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

You see, I know I have eternal life because of my faith in Jesus Christ. And I keep going on in that faith, I continue to believe in the name of the Son of God because I know where I’m going. Because he lives, I can be confident that God will get me to heaven. And so can you. I know some have never put their confidence in Christ. But you can do that today.

You can be baptized into Christ for the remission of your sins. And I know some of you have lost that confidence they once placed in Christ. But you can be restored. That confidence you can have once again when you decide to come back to him. I hope that today if we can help you here at The Truth In Love, that you’ll let us know, because we want to help you to live a confident life in Jesus Christ.

SINGING>> On Zion’s glorious summit stood
a numerous host redeemed by blood.
They hymned their king in strains divine.
I heard the song and strove to join,
I heard the song and strove to join.

While everlasting ages roll,
eternal love shall feast their soul.
And scenes of bliss forever new rise in succession to their view,
rise in succession to their view.
Holy, holy, holy Lord,
God of hosts on high adored.
Who like me thy praise should sing, oh almighty king?
Holy, holy, holy Lord,
God of hosts on high adored.
Holy, holy, holy.

ROBERT >> Thank you so much for watching our program today. If you have any questions, comments, or requests, if you would like a personal home Bible study or special prayers, if you want more information about the lesson today, or if you’d like to order today’s lesson or any other lesson on CD, DVD, or in manuscript form, please write The Truth In Love at P.O. Box 865, Hurst, Texas 76053.

Or you e-mail us at requests@ttil.tv.

Call our toll-free number, 800-819-2966 or visit our web site at www.ttil.tv.

Remember that all of our materials and services are absolutely free of charge. We just want to do what we can to help us all towards heaven. So please let us know how we can help you, and join us next time right here on The Truth In Love.

SINGING>> Sing to me of heaven, sing that song of peace.
From the toils that bind me it will bring release.
Burdens will be lifted that are pressing so,
showers of great blessing o’er my heart will flow.
Sing to me of heaven, let me fondly dream
of its golden glory, of its pearly gleam.
Sing to me when shadows of the evening fall,
sing to me of heaven, sing the sweetest song of all.
Sing to me of heaven tenderly and low
till the shadows o’er me rise and swiftly go.
When my heart is weary, when the day is long,
sing to me of heaven, sing that old, sweet song.
Sing to me of heaven, let me fondly dream
of its golden glory, of its pearly gleam.
Sing to me when shadows of the evening fall,
sing to me of heaven, sing the sweetest song of all.

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