Saturday, August 25, 2018

30 Year Anniversary - DNA


(Note: Thank the elders, staff, volunteer workers, congregation, distinguished guests and friends and family including Brenda, April, Ashley and Teena.)

Genesis 1  NKJV
27  So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
28  Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

The first 5 commandments God gave to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden were given to them in a perfect world. Even in a perfect world there are some do’s and don’ts.
·        When God said: Be fruitful, multiply and fill the earth:
o   God was identifying and cultivating the desire He placed in mankind for increase.
·        God also told them to subdue the earth.
o   Our God-given, God ordained disposition is one of pushing back against the enemies and obstacles of life.
o   God gave mankind a heart to win. We naturally enjoy victory.
·        And finally, God spoke to the seed He placed within us to have a say in our lives … to have dominion, the right and the power to govern and control what goes on around us while we pursue our own dreams.

God wants us to leave things better than we found them. It’s in our DNA.

What we do with what we have shows who we are and what we believe.

Some people live life storing wealth as an inheritance for their children. The Bible tells us that a good man will leave an inheritance to his children’s children, how much we leave and how much we do with what we have is the consideration.

And, if you want to know what others will do with the money you leave behind, you only have to look and see what they are doing with the money they have now. The Bible says they will only do more of the same. So, perhaps while you are preparing your children’s and grandchildren’s inheritance you might also spend a little time preparing them.

You see, the only thing God ever wanted to be was a Father. And the only thing God is working for is family. Family continues to be the most important thing in the universe and for all eternity. God made family by design and the driving desire of God is at the heart of all mankind. It’s in our DNA. We all hunger to be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, subdue it and have dominion. God has given us a chance to succeed and He is investing His time and resources in us … it’s called life.

There is a universal and eternal law that says, “Nothing and no one was ever born on their own.” Thirty years ago, we did not begin this Church. Other pastors and people worked hard and long before we got here, giving everything they had and placing all their hopes to give us a chance to see what we see today.

The Bible says that we should “Give honor to whom honor is due”. We owe a debt of gratitude and respect for all those men and women who gave their precious time, talents and resources to give us the chance we had to make this Church work.

As far back as I know, men like Pastor Chester Hensley, Pastor Steve Munsey, Pastor Larry Lea and Pastor Mike Alexander, along with the deacons, the elders, the staff ministers and the congregations they led, are the ones to honor this morning for the past 50 years of service to the communities of Southeast Texas. They lifted the name of Jesus and left their imprint on the work we know today as Golden Triangle Church On The Rock. May God bless their memory and continue to reward them for their labor of love.

We thank God for our DNA and our family, it gives us the chance to be who we are, do what we do and have what we have. Success is more than a one step process. We can’t blame our failures on our family, but it is to them we do, in great part, owe our successes.

We live in a world turned upside down. A world where parents deny children and where children can dis-own parents. Nonetheless, God has made it so that no parent or child can ever rightly deny who they are and where they came from. The God ordained truth of your parents and family lineage is written in undeniable atomic code in every cell of your body. One hair from your head, one drop of your blood, one kiss from your lips, or one tear in your eye tells the whole world exactly where you came from and unquestionably identifies who your parents are. This DNA is passed on to every child and grandchild you have and will follow you and continue to identify you well beyond the grave and for all time. DNA is a God marker in your life and you can never get rid of it because it makes a difference to God. He went to great lengths to permanently identify you with your family.

Hold that thought while I tell you a little about what we have done together in these past 30 years. Here are the Children/Churches/Ministries that have been brought to life out of the vision and resources supplied through this Church. These are only the ones within driving distance from this Church. Remember, without your biological parents, you would not be here. The DNA had to be just right for you to be you. It does not mean that you are your parents, but it does mean you will never be able to rightly deny them. It’s the same, without Golden Triangle Church On The Rock, these Churches and Ministries would not have existed. Thank God for our DNA and your willingness to be fruitful, multiply and impact Southeast Texas.
·        COTR North Beaumont
·        International Institute of Faith Based Counseling
·        COTR Vidor
·        Kingdom Expansion Resources
·        COTR Sour Lake
·        Compassion Christian Counseling Center
·        COTR South Groves
·        Agua Resources International
·        COTR Cowboy Church Beaumont
·        Grace COTR Mid-County
·        COTR (Bridgepoint) Bridge City
·        COTR County Jail and State and Federal Prison Congregations
·        COTR Medical Clinic Beaumont
·        Pathway Church Nederland
·        COTR Disaster Relief
·        Rock Church Southeast Port Arthur
·        Church Online
·        COTR Conroe
·        Third Service
·        COTR Jasper
·        COTR Food Pantry Port Arthur
·        CafĂ© Church
·        My Online TV
·        COTR Motorcycle Church Beaumont
·        COTR Youth Church

Not to forget or make light of those congregations in our communities to which we supplied pastors and ministers in times of need. One such, Faith Harbor Assembly of God in Port Acres, pastored by Pastor Lynne Parker, who served on staff here as our women’s pastor for near 20 years. We heard that church was without a pastor and I asked her to serve there while we continued paying her salary. After about 8 months they offered, and she accepted the position as pastor there. She is sitting here on the front row today because we are undeniably family.

Added to these are the new Church start-ups, Missionaries sent out from our Church and the Foreign Ministries ongoing and fully underwritten by your generosity in Kenya, Russia, Mozambique, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, England, Nepal and Mexico.

Plus the orphanages, schools, clinics, feeding centers and churches we help to support on a monthly and project basis, who feed thousands of meals each day, caring for children around the world and supplying spiritually motivated humanitarian relief in country after country from Israel to India and from China to Cambodia to Columbia, so that Today and Every Day, the Sun never Sets on the Ministry and the Outreach efforts of Golden Triangle Church On The Rock.

Thirty years ago we were a congregation in trouble but nonetheless a congregation with a chance. The eldership and I led those few families by making a fresh commitment to God. Together we stood before the Church and declared that our one goal would be to put a smile on God’s face every day. We promised to make this Church important to God and to keep our focus on saving souls and serving others.

Just like this Church:
·        You have a past
·        You have a present
·        You have a future

Believe me when I say, as I have been saying for 30 years, The journey is your friend! It is the journey that prepares you to operate at destiny capacity. God has been, is now and ever will be preparing you and positioning you for your greatest day. Put your trust and your future in His hands.

Your past, whether good, bad or ugly, has brought you to this moment.
·        You don’t have to deny it
·        You don’t have to hide it
·        And, you don’t have to repeat it

This morning I am going to make a fresh and a renewed commitment to keep making this Church important to God. I have only two goals in life:
1.   When I lay my head down on my pillow at night, I want to know that I did something to put a smile on God’s face that day.
2.   When you enter the gates of heaven one day, I want to be standing close enough to hear Jesus say to you, “Well done, My good and faithful servant!”

It is God’s will for you that you:
1.   Increase in every good thing
2.   Win against the enemies of your life
3.   Leave things better than you find them

I challenge you this morning to live a life pleasing to God and do your best … it’s your DNA!


Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Believe and Embrace Part 5 – Signs and Wonders


The Bible teaches the importance of acting in faith. The half-brother of Jesus, James, became the first pastor of the Church in Jerusalem. When he wrote the book of James he encouraged us to consider that faith without works is dead. James used the example of Noah who believed God but would have perished in the flood had he not acted on his faith and built a boat. The scriptures do not teach that we are saved by works, we can be saved and go to heaven by grace through our faith alone. However, if we desire to live a victorious Christian life, we must act on our faith and do what faith demands.

Mark 16
15  And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.
16  “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.
17  “And these signs will follow those who believe …”

Three things we have learned from Mark 16 thus far:
·        Our lives are meant to be an expression of the Gospel to others on God’s terms.
·        Faith is our commitment to God while Water Baptism is our profession before men.
·        Signs follow believers … Believers do not follow signs.

Mark 16
17  “And these signs shall follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues;
18  “they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

1.  Cast out demons
o   Force; command; expel; drive out; compel; reject
o   Evil spirits who are messengers and ministers of the devil
o   Deliverance from deception, oppression and possession are manifested by command of those who believe in the Name of Jesus.

Acts 19 NKJV
11  Now God worked unusual miracles by the hands of Paul,
12  so that even handkerchiefs or aprons were brought from his body to the sick, and the diseases left them and the evil spirits went out of them.
13 ¶  Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists took it upon themselves to call the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “We exorcise you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches.”
14  Also there were seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, who did so.
15  And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?”
16  Then the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, overpowered them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.
17  This became known both to all Jews and Greeks dwelling in Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.
18  And many who had believed came confessing and telling their deeds.
19  Also, many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted up the value of them, and it totaled fifty thousand pieces of silver.
20  So the word of the Lord grew mightily and prevailed.

Matthew 10:1  And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease.

Jesus’ great commission includes Him giving every Believer the power and the authority to cast out demons. This particular study of the phrase in verse 17 concerning casting out demons is not meant to be a spiritual guide on demonology or deliverance. Much has been written on this subject in the scriptures and by scholars alike however, let’s firmly conclude that we have authority over the devil and all of his demons in the Name of Jesus.

2.  Speak with new tongues
a.   Speak: The use of words and sounds to communicate or disclose one’s mind and declare one’s thoughts.
b.   New: An unprecedented, uncommon, unheard of, unusual and new
c.   Tongues: Language or dialect specific to and distinct from those languages spoken by other nations

Acts 2 NKJV
1 ¶  When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2  And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.
3  Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.
4  And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Tongues are often controversial utterances among the religious, while at the same time they are a sign to unbelievers. (1 Corinthians 14:22)

Acts 2
5 ¶  And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven.
6  And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language.
7  Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans?
8  “And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born?
§  Acts 10:44-48
§  Acts 19:1-6
§  1 Corinthians 12:7-11
§  1 Corinthians 13:1
§  1 Corinthians 14:2
§  1 Corinthians 14:14

1 Corinthians 14
18  I thank my God I speak with tongues more than you all;
19  yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue.

1 Corinthians 14:39  Therefore, brethren, desire earnestly to prophesy, and do not forbid to speak with tongues.

1 Corinthians 14:
2  For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries.
4  He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church.

Mark 16 Continued …
3.   Take up serpents
4.   If they drink anything deadly, it will not hurt them
5.   Lay hands on the sick and they will recover

Mark 16
19 ¶  So then, after the Lord had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God.
20  And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Destiny’s Child


Did you know that camels can go months in the desert without a sip of water? Contrary to what is commonly believed, camels don’t store water in their humps, that’s where they store concentrated fat for energy which is meant to primarily take the place of food, not water. The camel is the perfect desert animal who conserves water by God’s design. When they drink water their red blood cells enlarge up to five times normal size and are oval shaped instead of round to assist in blood flow when their body temperatures rise in the desert heat.

The respiratory system of a camel extracts water from even the driest of air and helps to cool their body and reclaims moisture which would be normally lost in breathing. It has also been believed that camels store some amounts of water in small water sacs surrounding the stomach which are used to provide well-regulated amounts of moisture to the body during extreme times.

However God designed it, two things stand out as utterly amazing: Camels naturally travel long distances through the desert for days on end without a single sip of water and number two: When camels finally do get to drink, they will drink 30 to 40 gallons or more of water in only about 15 minutes. They can drink faster than one person can draw water from a well.

This brings us to our message from God today. Allow me to set the stage for today’s Bible Story while you turn to the first book in the Bible, Genesis, chapter 24.

It is about 2000 years Before Christ and a man named Abraham was 140 years old. Abraham’s wife, Sarah, died and both he and their 40-year-old son, Isaac, missed her greatly. It seemed to Abraham that it was time for Isaac to take a wife only, Abraham dwelled in the land of Canaan and did not want his son to marry a woman who served the false gods of that land.

Abraham called his oldest and most trusted servant, (Eliezer), and sent him on a mission making him swear an oath that he would not take a woman of Canaan as a wife for Isaac but would travel to Abraham’s family in Haran and find a suitable wife for him from there. Eliezer loaded 10 camels with the wealth of his master Abraham and with provisions for the journey.

The calculations from that time shows the distance from Hebron in Israel to Haran in the fertile northern Mesopotamian valley, near the modern-day Syrian/Turkish border, to be about 470 miles and it would have taken nearly 3 weeks to cover by camel. The servant of Abraham arrived on the outskirts of Haran in the early evening, just about the time families sent their young daughters to draw water from the well just outside the city.

Being at the city well in those day was like going to a local pub or the beauty shop today, anything you want to know about anyone in the town can probably be heard in conversation there. Eliezer was looking for the family of his master Abraham. There was no better place for him to be. Let’s begin reading at verse 1:

Genesis 24  NKJV
1 ¶  Now Abraham was old, well advanced in age; and the LORD had blessed Abraham in all things.
2  So Abraham said to the oldest servant of his house, who ruled over all that he had, “Please, put your hand under my thigh,
3  “and I will make you swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and the God of the earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell;
4  “but you shall go to my country and to my family, and take a wife for my son Isaac.”

8  “And if the woman is not willing to follow you, then you will be released from this oath …

As I said, Eliezer loaded 10 camels and left for the city of Nahor, also known as Haran. When he arrived, and evening came, Eliezer prayed to the Lord God of his master Abraham …

14  “Now let it be that the young woman to whom I say, ‘Please let down your pitcher that I may drink,’ and she says, ‘Drink, and I will also give your camels a drink’  — let her be the one You have appointed for Your servant Isaac. And by this I will know that You have shown kindness to my master.”

Now that’s a pretty tall order seeing that there were 10 camels. Where does Eliezer expect God to find a woman like that?

15  And it happened, before he had finished speaking, that behold, Rebekah, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, came out with her pitcher on her shoulder.
16  Now the young woman was very beautiful to behold, a virgin; no man had known her. And she went down to the well, filled her pitcher, and came up.
17  And the servant ran to meet her and said, “Please let me drink a little water from your pitcher.”
18  So she said, “Drink, my lord.” Then she quickly let her pitcher down to her hand, and gave him a drink.
19  And when she had finished giving him a drink, she said, “I will draw water for your camels also, until they have finished drinking.”

Rebekah didn’t just offer to give the camels a drink, she committed herself to drawing water for them until all ten of them drank all they wanted.

Remember, thirsty camels drink 30 to 40 gallons of water each. If a person continued to draw and pour 2 gallons of water per minute into the camel’s drinking trough non-stop it could take up to 3 ½ hours to satisfy the thirst of all ten camels.

Rebekah didn’t just meet the criteria of the wife Eliezer was hoping to find for his master’s son, she far exceeded his expectations …

20  Then she quickly emptied her pitcher into the trough, ran back to the well to draw water, and drew for all his camels.

When Eliezer found out that Rebekah was from the family of Abraham he bowed and worshipped the Lord for prospering him on his journey. He gave her presents and was welcomed into her mother’s home where he told them how much God had blessed Abraham and Eliezer then gave them many gifts from his master. Eliezer related his payer to God at the well concerning the camels and how Rebekah was evidently the one God had chosen to be the wife of Isaac. In the face of all of these things they had but one question: What did Rebekah want to do? Was she willing to go?

57  So they said, “We will call the young woman and ask her personally.”
58  Then they called Rebekah and said to her, “Will you go with this man?” And she said, “I will go.”
59  So they sent away Rebekah their sister and her nurse, and Abraham’s servant and his men.
60  And they blessed Rebekah and said to her: “Our sister, may you become The mother of thousands of ten thousands; And may your descendants possess The gates of those who hate them.”
61  Then Rebekah and her maids arose, and they rode on the camels and followed the man. So the servant took Rebekah and departed.

Rebekah was a child of destiny. Today she is still the greatest Old Testament representation of the Bride of Christ.

·        She was the daughter of a wealthy, well-to-do family, and was going about her daily chores without realizing just how important she was to the plan of God.
·        Perhaps she imagined a life she would one day live or dreamed dreams of being in her own house someday or maybe she felt a twinge or caught a glimpse of something she could not understand and had not yet experienced. Maybe she had dismissed those inklings as youthful imaginations or perhaps she even dared to dwell on  some of those thoughts of what her life was going to be like when she was married or when she got older.
·        Something seems to have shaped her attitude and her demeanor because when we see Rebekah in Genesis 24, she is a kind and caring, hardworking and helpful young woman, fit for her destiny, content in her moment, and yet so willing to embrace a future only God could offer.

Rebekah was definitely Destiny’s Child … and so are you!

·        Only God knows your destiny and it is His Holy Spirit that draws you on towards your greatest day, your greatest potential, your greatest offering to Him and eternity. You can dream from anywhere at any age, but you must follow your dreams to make them come true.
·        Something speaks to you and makes you yearn, if only for the twinkling of a moment, you catch a glimpse of something wonderful and it excites your whole being. This is the Holy Spirit urging us to look up and lift up our head, to feel the wind of the Spirit and follow destiny’s call on our life.

For Rebekah, it led her to one moment in life when a new door was suddenly opened to her because she was:
1.   Where she should be (not out partying but engaged with her family)
2.   Doing what she should be doing (busy about her common chores)
3.   Content and Productive (Happy and wholesome where she was)
4.   Willing to work harder with the fruits of kindness as her only reward.

She had all she ever needed at home except the one thing she longed for in her heart … something she could not even put to words and could not explain. However, the dream in her heart came alive when that door opened. It was like Queen Esther, and the poor widow in 1 Kings 17 …
·        It gave her the security she needed to say yes
·        It covered the gaps in her mind that she could not know
·        It filled her heart with hope beyond her understanding
·        It gave her faith to strike out on a new course of life

Something prepared Rebekah for that moment … and she allowed it … no doubt Rebekah embraced those feelings she had felt and opened her heart to possibilities beyond her contrivance and beyond her control … she was destiny’s child. She simply placed her faith and her future in God’s hands.

Rebekah felt she belonged to something she had never seen; to somewhere she had never been; doing something she had never done; she was willing to go for it, and God made her able. It was, after all, His plan.

The door of destiny was opened to Rebekah, but it would not remain open forever … it was a chance and time was critical. Life would go on with or without her. The servant was under an oath to give her the opportunity, but he would be released from his oath if she said no or refused to go.

Rebekah’s faith in her destiny did not make things easy, but it did make things possible. She had a long journey; she was separated from her family; she was barren for many years; yet the hand of God was upon her.

At each stage and every age of life we too are offered opportunity, doors through which we can take a step into destiny. When one door closes another will open to us by the hand of God. You are a Child of Destiny. You are headed towards your next door of destiny. When the door opens, and your heart knows it, will you say yes to God? Will you trust your future to Him? You are a Child of God. You have a destined future. It’s on its way!

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Believe and Embrace Part 4 – In The Name


So far in our current mid-week series we have covered verses 15, 16 and part of verse 17 in our study of Mark chapter 16. This evening we will complete verse 17. For context and continuity sake let’s recap a little before we begin.

Mark 16
15  And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.
16  “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.
17  “And these signs will follow those who believe …”

Three things we have learned from Mark 16 thus far:
·        Our lives are meant to be an expression of the Gospel on God’s terms.
·       By Faith we make an eternal commitment to God while Water Baptism is a public profession of our trust in Him.
·      Signs follow believers … Believers do not follow signs.

Mark 16
17  “And these signs shall follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues;

·        In My name … What does it mean to be “In the Name of Jesus”?

2 Corinthians 5
17  Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
18  Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation,
19  that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.
20  Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God.
21  For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

The New Testament is filled with the benefits of being “In Christ”. No less than 85 verses are used to detail those benefits.

Acts 24:24  And after some days, when Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish, he sent for Paul and heard him concerning the faith in Christ.
Romans 3:24  being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
Romans 6:11  Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:23  For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:1  There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
Romans 8:2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.
Romans 8:39  nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 9:1  I tell the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit,
Romans 12:5  so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.
Romans 15:17  Therefore I have reason to glory in Christ Jesus in the things which pertain to God.
Romans 16:3  Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus,
Romans 16:7  Greet Andronicus and Junia, my countrymen and my fellow prisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me.
Romans 16:9  Greet Urbanus, our fellow worker in Christ, and Stachys, my beloved.
Romans 16:10  Greet Apelles, approved in Christ. Greet those who are of the household of Aristobulus.
1 Corinthians 1:2  To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all who in every place call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:
1 Corinthians 1:30  But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God — and righteousness and sanctification and redemption — 
1 Corinthians 3:1  And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal, as to babes in Christ.
1 Corinthians 4:10  We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are distinguished, but we are dishonored!
1 Corinthians 4:15  For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.
1 Corinthians 4:17  For this reason I have sent Timothy to you, who is my beloved and faithful son in the Lord, who will remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach everywhere in every church.
1 Corinthians 15:18  Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
1 Corinthians 15:19  If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.
1 Corinthians 15:22  For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.
1 Corinthians 15:31  I affirm, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.
1 Corinthians 16:24  My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen.
2 Corinthians 1:21  Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God,
2 Corinthians 2:14  Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.
2 Corinthians 2:17  For we are not, as so many, peddling the word of God; but as of sincerity, but as from God, we speak in the sight of God in Christ.
2 Corinthians 3:14  But their minds were blinded. For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament, because the veil is taken away in Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:17  Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
2 Corinthians 5:19  that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.
2 Corinthians 11:3  But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
2 Corinthians 12:2  I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago — whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows — such a one was caught up to the third heaven.
2 Corinthians 12:19  Again, do you think that we excuse ourselves to you? We speak before God in Christ. But we do all things, beloved, for your edification.
Galatians 1:22  And I was unknown by face to the churches of Judea which were in Christ.
Galatians 2:4  And this occurred because of false brethren secretly brought in (who came in by stealth to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage),
Galatians 2:16  “knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.
Galatians 3:14  that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Galatians 3:17  And this I say, that the law, which was four hundred and thirty years later, cannot annul the covenant that was confirmed before by God in Christ, that it should make the promise of no effect.
Galatians 3:26  For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
Galatians 3:28  There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
Galatians 5:6  For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.
Galatians 6:15  For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but a new creation.
Ephesians 1:1  Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, To the saints who are in Ephesus, and faithful in Christ Jesus:
Ephesians 1:3  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,
Ephesians 1:10  that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth — in Him.
Ephesians 1:12  that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory.
Ephesians 1:20  which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,
Ephesians 2:6  and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
Ephesians 2:7  that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 2:10  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
Ephesians 2:13  But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
Ephesians 3:6  that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel,
Ephesians 3:11  according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord,
Ephesians 4:32  And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you.
Philippians 1:1  Paul and Timothy, bondservants of Jesus Christ, To all the saints in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:
Philippians 1:13  so that it has become evident to the whole palace guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in Christ;
Philippians 2:1  Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy,
Philippians 2:5  Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,
Philippians 3:3  For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh,
Philippians 3:9  and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith;
Philippians 3:14  I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:21  Greet every saint in Christ Jesus. The brethren who are with me greet you.
Colossians 1:2  To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ who are in Colosse: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Colossians 1:4  since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of your love for all the saints;
Colossians 1:28  Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.
Colossians 2:5  For though I am absent in the flesh, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the steadfastness of your faith in Christ.
1 Thessalonians 2:14  For you, brethren, became imitators of the churches of God which are in Judea in Christ Jesus. For you also suffered the same things from your own countrymen, just as they did from the Judeans,
1 Thessalonians 4:16  For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.
1 Thessalonians 5:18  in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Timothy 1:14  And the grace of our Lord was exceedingly abundant, with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.
1 Timothy 2:7  for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle — I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying — a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.
1 Timothy 3:13  For those who have served well as deacons obtain for themselves a good standing and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.
2 Timothy 1:1  Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus,
2 Timothy 1:9  who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,
2 Timothy 1:13  Hold fast the pattern of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.
2 Timothy 2:1  You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
2 Timothy 2:10  Therefore I endure all things for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.
2 Timothy 3:12  Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.
2 Timothy 3:15  and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
Philemon 1:6  that the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgment of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.
Philemon 1:8  Therefore, though I might be very bold in Christ to command you what is fitting,
Philemon 1:23  Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus, greets you,
1 Peter 3:16  having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed.
1 Peter 5:14  Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to you all who are in Christ Jesus. Amen.

These are just the scriptures that actually say the words, “in Christ”. These 85 do not nearly account for all of those verses which point to the same reality but use the words, “In Him”, or “In the Name”, or “In Jesus” or other such indicators. There is clearly a position into which we move when we receive Jesus as our Lord and Savior.
·        We become new creations
·        We are washed and become clean before God
·        We are forgiven, justified, sanctified, purified and made righteous
·        We are born-again as saints, heirs, joint-heirs, sons, daughters, kings and priests, as children of the most high God.

How does a person get “In Christ?” …
1.   Recognize they need a Savior
2.   Repent of their sin
3.   Receive Jesus on God’s terms

1 John 5:13  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.

Next week we are going to discuss those signs which follow those who believe.

Mark 16
17  “And these signs shall follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues;
18  “they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
19 ¶  So then, after the Lord had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God.
20  And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen.

James 5:14  Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.