If God Doesn’t Need Anything, Then Why Does He Command Us to Serve Him?

God doesn’t need our work.

He doesn’t need our money, either. God can get everything done without a heavenly Kickstarter campaign. He didn’t ask for any help when he created the galaxies. He can get along just fine without our peewee contributions to the universe.

He doesn’t need our worship either. He doesn’t need our praises to bolster his self-esteem.

God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things;

(Acts 17:24‭-‬25 KJV)

God doesn’t need anything. He doesn’t need our worship, our work or our money. So why does God command us to worship, serve, and give our money to him?

First of all, for his glory. Wait a second. If He doesn’t need our work or worship, how does it glorify Him? It certainly doesn’t add anything to His glory. Yet it does display His glory. When we sing His praises together, we display to one another God’s greatness, kindness, and love. When I hear you give thanks to God, I’m reminded afresh of His goodness. You display God’s glory to me. And it builds my faith and helps me love and trust Him more. And when we do works of love, we display the character of Christ God is forming in us.

Another reason God commands us to worship, serve, give and obey is for our joy.

When God tells us to sing and raise our hands to Him, it’s not because He needs our praise to feel good about Himself. It’s for our pleasure in Him. When we express our appreciation of God it enhances our enjoyment of Him. Like when we express appreciation for a great painting, or a great steak. It enhances and completes our enjoyment of it. When God commands us to give, it’s not because He needs the money. He owns the cattle on a thousand hills. It’s for our benefit and good. When we give, God pours blessings back on us. When we sow, we reap. All God’s commands are for our benefit and joy. That’s why we should serve Him cheerfully:

Serve the Lord with gladness! (Psalms 100:2)

It doesn’t glorify God to serve Him cheerlessly. It’s not enough to serve the Lord, we must serve Him with gladness. Parents, ever ask your child to do something for you and he responds with as much enthusiasm as if you’d asked him to have a root canal? How does that make you feel? He may do the chore, but if he does it with grumbling or ingratitude, it doesn’t please you. You almost feel like saying ‘don’t bother.’

God loves a cheerful giver. Do you think it glorifies God when we grudgingly say ‘Alright, here’s my buck’? He loves a cheerful giver because glad giving displays the value of Christ. That He is more valuable than all our money. It shows we believe he’s generous and good and will bless and provide for us.

God doesn’t need our work or our praises or our money. He gives them to us as gifts to display His glory and enhance our enjoyment of Him. So let’s serve the Lord with gladness today.

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Jesus Through the Bible

Christians believe in a Christ-centered Bible. The salvation that was expected in the Old Testament is exhibited in the Gospels and then explained in the rest of the New Testament.

From Genesis we learn that Jesus is the seed of the woman who will crush Satan’s head, and the son of Abraham who will bless all the nations of the earth. From Exodus we learn that Jesus is the Passover Lamb whose blood saves us from the angel of death, and the wilderness tabernacle where God dwells in glory. From Leviticus we learn that He is the atoning sacrifice that takes away our sin. From Numbers we learn that He is the bronze serpent lifted up for everyone who looks to Him in faith. From Deuteronomy we learn that He is the prophet greater than Moses who comes to teach us God’s will.

So much for the Pentateuch.

What do we learn from the historical books?

From Joshua we learn that Jesus is our great captain in the fight. From Judges we learn that He is the king who helps us do what is right in God’s eyes, and not our own. From Ruth we learn that Jesus is our kinsman-redeemer. From 1 and 2 Samuel we learn that He is our anointed king. From 1 and 2 Kings we learn that He is the glory in the temple. From 1 and 2 Chronicles we learn that He is the Son of David — the rightful king of Judah. From Ezra and Nehemiah we learn that He will restore the city of God. From Esther we learn that He will deliver us from all our enemies.

Then we come to the poetic writings. From Job we learn that Jesus is our living redeemer, who will stand on the earth at the last day. From the Psalms we learn that He is the sweet singer of Israel — the Savior forsaken by God and left to die, yet restored by God to rule the nations. From Proverbs we learn that Jesus is our wisdom. From Ecclesiastes we learn that He alone can give us meaning and purpose. From the Song of Solomon we learn that He is the lover of our souls.

This brings us to the prophets, whose special mission it was to prophesy about the coming of Christ. Isaiah tells that He is the child born of the Virgin, the son given to rule, the shoot from the stump of Jesse, and the servant stricken and afflicted, upon whom God has laid all our iniquity. Jeremiah and Lamentations tell us that Jesus is our comforter in sorrow, the mediator of a new covenant who turns our weeping into songs of joy. Ezekiel tells us that the Spirit of Jesus can breathe life into dry bones and make a heart of stone beat again. Daniel tells us that Jesus is the Son of Man coming in clouds of glory to render justice on the earth.

These are the Major Prophets, but the Minor Prophets also bore witness to Jesus Christ. Hosea prophesied that He would be a faithful husband to His wayward people. Joel prophesied that before He came to judge the nations, Jesus would pour out His Spirit on men and women, Jews and Gentiles, young and old. Amos and Obadiah prophesied that He would restore God’s kingdom. Jonah prophesied that for the sake of the nations, He would be raised on the third day. Micah prophesied that Jesus would be born in Bethlehem. Nahum prophesied that He would judge the world. Habakkuk prophesied that He would justify those who live by faith. Zephaniah prophesied He would rejoice over His people with singing. Haggai prophesied that He would rebuild God’s temple. Zechariah prophesied that He would come in royal gentleness, riding on a donkey, and that when He did, all God’s people would be holy. Malachi prophesied that before He came, a prophet would turn the hearts of the fathers back to their children.

From Genesis to Malachi, the Old Testament is all about Jesus. But of course it is in the New Testament that Jesus actually comes to save His people. Whereas the Old Testament gives us His background, the New Testament presents His biography.

The gospels give us the good news of salvation through His crucifixion and resurrection. The Gospel of Matthew is that Jesus is the Messiah God promised to Israel. The Gospel of Mark is that He is the suffering servant. The Gospel of Luke is that He is a Savior for everyone, including the poor and the weak. The Gospel of John is that He is the incarnate Word, the Son of God, the Light of the world, the Bread of life, and the only Way of salvation. But all the gospels end with the same good news: Jesus died on the cross for sinners and was raised again to give eternal life; anyone who believes in Him will be saved.

Then the New Testament turns its attention to the church, which is still about Jesus because the church is His body. The book of Acts shows how Jesus is working in the church today, through the gospel, by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Then come all the letters that were written to the church — letters that tell about Jesus and how to live for Him. In Romans Jesus is righteousness from God for Jews and Gentiles; in 1 and 2 Corinthians He is the one who unifies the church and gives us spiritual gifts for ministry. In Galatians Jesus liberates us from legalism; in Ephesians He is the head of the church; in Philippians He is the joy of our salvation; in Colossians He is the firstborn over all creation. In 1 and 2 Thessalonians Jesus is coming soon to deliver us from this evil age; in 1 and 2 Timothy and Titus He shepherds His people; and in Philemon He reconciles brothers who are separated by sin. This is the gospel according to Paul.

Hebrews is an easy one: Jesus is the great high priest who died for sin once and for all on the cross and who sympathizes with us in all our weakness. In the epistle of James, Jesus helps us to prove our faith by doing good works. In the epistles of Peter He is our example in suffering. In the letters of John He is the Lord of love. In Jude He is our Master and Teacher. Last, but not least, comes the book of Revelation, in which Jesus Christ is revealed as the Lamb of God slain for sinners, Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end, the King of kings and Lord of lords, the great Judge over all the earth, and the glorious God of heaven.

The Bible says that in Jesus “all things consist” (Colossians 1:17) and this is as true of the Bible as it is of anything else. Jesus holds the whole Bible together. From Genesis to Revelation, the Word of God is all about Jesus, and therefore it has the power to bring salvation through faith in Him. It is by reading the Bible that we come to know Jesus, and it is by coming to know Jesus that we are saved. This is why we are so committed to God’s Word, why it is the foundation for everything we do, both as a church and as individual Christians.

We love the Word because it brings us to Christ.

The Father Testifies of the Son

“Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.” (John 12:28)

This is the last of three remarkable occasions during the earthly ministry of Christ when God the Father spoke directly from heaven concerning His only begotten Son. The first was at His baptism. “And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17; also,Mark 1:11; Luke 3:22). This thrice-recorded testimony was given primarily to the forerunner, John the Baptist, who said, “And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost” (John 1:33).

The second was to three chosen disciples at the transfiguration. “Behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him” (Matthew 17:5). Years later Peter recalled, “This voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount” (2 Peter 1:18).

Finally, the Father spoke the words of the opening text, in direct response to the prayer of His Son at the beginning of the final week before His crucifixion. The message was to His Son but for the people. Jesus said, “This voice came not because of me, but for your sakes” (John 12:30) as He spoke of His imminent death on the cross.

When God spoke from heaven, the message was to assure and encourage His own dear ones: John, the disciples, and Jesus Himself. But it has also become an exhortation to all people for all time. Jesus Christ is God’s Son, and God is glorified in Him. Hear Him!

How is God eternal?

The word “eternal” means without beginning or end. In reference to God, therefore, to be eternal is to exist as the one Being without beginning or end, uncreated and never able to die. As such, He serves as the power behind all created things (Genesis 1:1).

Many passages of Scripture affirm this biblical concept of God as eternal. For example, Psalm 90:2 notes, “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God.Deuteronomy 33:27 refers to the Lord as the “eternal God.Romans 1:20 speaks of God’s “eternal power.” Ephesians 3:11 speaks of God’s “eternal purpose.” First Timothy 6:16 notes God’s “power everlasting” or rule. Isaiah 9:6 refers to God as an “Everlasting Father.” Isaiah 26:4 calls Him an “everlasting strength

As part of the Triune God, Jesus Christ is also revealed as eternal in nature. He existed in the beginning with God (John 1:1). Jesus taught that He was the “I AM,” a reference to the Lord in Exodus 3:14 (John 8:58). Colossians 1:16 teaches, “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:”

The Holy Spirit is also noted as eternal in Scripture. God’s Spirit was involved in the creation of the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:3). Hebrews 9:14 refers to the Holy Spirit as God’s “eternal Spirit.”

Scripture also speaks frequently about both eternal life (John 3:16) and eternal destruction (Matthew 25:46; 2 Thessalonians 1:9). There is an eternal dwelling for God’s people with the Lord, revealing the Bible’s clear teaching regarding eternity future (Luke 16:9; 2 Corinthians 5:1).

In Genesis 21:33, we are also told that one of God’s names is the Everlasting God: “And Abraham planted a grove in Beer–sheba, and called there on the name of the Lord, the everlasting God.” Psalm 145:13 affirms that God’s kingdom is likewise everlasting: “Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.”

It is clear that the One who created all things existed before all space, time, matter, and energy. Scripture also notes God has everlasting love for His people, has an eternal purpose, and an eternal destination that includes eternity in His presence for those who believe in Him.

Blessed by the Lord

I’d been having problems with my android phone.

As I was coming from the phone technician, who tried to repair my phone, after he told me that my phone was dead, I complained to the Lord. As I walked to our local library to go and use their computers I have to walk through a passage-like area in-between a couple of businesses before getting to the library, and as I walked through I happened to look on the ground and there was a pamphlet or some paper lying there and three clear words were visible to me, ‘Don’t Give Up”! I knew it was the Lord speaking to me and I thanked Him and told Him that I wouldn’t give up.

This past

Sunday, while getting a lift home with our pastor’s daughter’s fiancé I spoke about my “dead” phone and how I was planning on buying a new one through a retailer and to pay it off. I am semi employed at the moment and only get paid when I work.

At about 2 on Sunday afternoon Lindsay my daughter ran to me with my wife’s phone telling me that Matthew (the fiancé) was on the phone. I answered and he asked me if could come downstairs quickly – we live in an apartment. Well I went down and he stood there with a package in his hand. He said that the Lord laid it on his heart to buy me a phone and there he was.

Its smaller than my old one but it’s an android 6.0, much better than the old which was 4.4. So; I did not give up and was rewarded. God is just great!!

If he can do it for me as a follower of Jesus Christ, a born again person He can do it for you and more IF you believe the Gospel and repent of your sins.

Jesus was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, was crucified, died and was risen from the dead three days later; believe that and turn your back on your sin and you will be saved.