All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go and make disciples of all men!

And He Also Told this Parable to Some People Who Trusted in Themselves that They Were Righteous, and Viewed Others with Contempt

“And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with youalways, even to the end of the age.’” Matthew 28:18-20 NASB.
Jesus has paid the price for our sins, and has been given all authority in heaven and on earth.He commands all who are His to go and make disciples of all men. And He is with us until the end of the world. This is a wonderful promise! If we wish to go out and tell others about God’s love and the salvation that Jesus bought for us, Jesus will be with us until the end of the world! It is because of the price that He paid for our sins, that we can go out and help win others for the kingdom. Let us rejoice and be glad for the great salvation He bought for us!
This command that Jesus gave us is a promise, that He would give us the power to make disciples of all men. When Jesus said this it was very near Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit would be poured out without measure upon His people who were gathered there in that upper room, and would be given to all Christians who would repent and be baptized. This same power is also available to us now, if we wish to be Jesus’ disciple! Acts 1 also talks about this same event where Jesus gave His last message to His disciples before He ascended back into heaven. He said to His disciples, “He said to them, ‘It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.’” Acts 1:7-8 NASB.  Here is the secret to how they could preach the gospel to the whole world: they would receive power from God, the Holy Spirit to do so! 
Many people do not fully realize what Christ has been given since He died on the cross, and provided the victory for us. They don’t live their lives like they fully, really believe that He won the victory on the cross for them, and has now been given all power in Heaven and on Earth. They want to say that Christ only forgives us when we confess our sins, or that we are just saved, with not much of a change or difference in their life needed after their conversion. Many don’t realize the power from Him that they can claim. If anyone desires to do Christ’s bidding and go tell the good news of the gospel to the world, Jesus will be with them, even until the end of the world! He will provide them with the power to preach this message with power, and will help the hearers of the message want to be saved. The power to bring honor and glory to Jesus and His Father has been promised to all Christians, not just grace to forgive us after we sin. The power to not live a hypocritical life, the power to live a righteous life for Him and the power to give His testimony to the world. These were all promised to us by Jesus, since He was victorious over sin and death, and paid for our sins, now all power has been given to Him both in Heaven and on earth! Let’s live our life, like we believe what He said! Let’s not live our lives, barely eking out a spiritual existence, and feeling guilty that we are not doing enough for Him or the Father. Why should we starve or thirst, when the fountain flowing from the river of life is within our reach, and when we have been provided with the bread of life? Just take the bread of life and a deep drink from the river of life that He has provided for you, and have a new life with Him! But take this every day, and every time you hunger and thirst, and you will be filled and satisfied with the goodness of God! Don’t starve or thirst yourself, but be filled with God’s love, you need it!
Let us also believe that He will give us the power to be His witnesses, both in Jerusalem, and all Judea, and Samaria, and even to the remotest parts of the earth as He said in Acts 1:8. We don’t have to be worried, or worry if we are good enough to be saved, or whether we are a good enough preacher to preach the word to others, or good enough at whatever gift God has given to us that He wants us to use for Him. No reason for guilt or fear. Just trust and believe Jesus when He said that all power has been given to Him in Heaven and on earth, and go out with joy, and help others see how much He and His Father love them! This is the gospel message! This is the good news! It’s not about how good we are, or what we can do for Him, it’s about what He and His Father and the Holy Spirit can do for us! Just cooperate with God, yield your heart to Him, and be filled with the Holy Spirit! Pray for this, breathe this, and live for this! Then go forth with great joy and great power, after you have received power from on high, and bring honor and glory to God! He deserves it doesn’t He? What brings honor and glory to God?When someone is saved by the blood of Jesus and transformed from a son or daughter of perdition or a son or daughter of sin, into a son or daughter of God! But what even brings more glory to God, is when His own children reproduce is character of love and want to go out and show this to the world!Then He is delighted to grant them the full power, love and joy that the Holy Spirit brings to the soul who is devoted to Him; this is the power to make others the son or daughter of God too!
May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the Fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all! Amen.

©Copyright 2017 by John Foll


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And He [Jesus] also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt:” Luke 18:9 NASB. Have you met individuals who think that they are good and view others with contempt? Have you heard individuals who are quick to talk about others behind their back and hurt their reputation? Then you know those whom Jesus is addressing. Do you think that you are good? Do you have trouble protecting the feelings and reputations of others? Do people who break God’s Law or do not believe “the Truth” get you all fired up? We hope that you will keep reading this message, if any of these points hit home. Jesus’ message wasn’t just to rebuke the self-righteous, He loved these people and wanted to help them before it was too late! Can you see the love in His message here? The problem that Jesus is addressing is a very common problem in humanity. Many people have had this problem in their life at one time or another. Jesus was telling some people here that they needed to make a change if they wanted to be saved.
We took a pause from finishing this passage in Luke to contemplate Jesus’ message here. People read that Jesus was speaking to the Pharisees, then think that this message doesn’t apply to them, and say ‘I am glad I am not a sinner like that Pharisee’. Many people are OK with hearing a message, if they think that it applies to someone else. So think about this message, and not just jump to the conclusion that it doesn’t apply to you. Often people just read a passage, and run with what they think it means, and skip over some of what has been said. So it is beneficial to read the whole passage, and read every word of it, not skipping over parts of it, to get the whole truth, especially for parts that are often ignored. It is good to hear a startling message to help you wake up, or to hear a message stated from a different perspective, so you can be at peace. 
Jesus continues:
"Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: 'God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 'I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.' But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful to me, the sinner!' I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted."” Luke 18:10-14 NASB. 
Why was the tax collector justified before God, and not the Pharisee in this account? Because he humbled himself before God and begged for His mercy! The Pharisee didn’t.There is no one who does good, not even one.’ Psalm 14:3 NASB. So why wasn’t this Pharisee justified before God? Because he humbled not his heart before God, and confessed not his sin of pride and of praying unkind words towards this poor tax collector - sinner.If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14 KJV. God declares through His prophet Jeremiah, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. And I will be found of you, saith the LORD: and I will turn away your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I have driven you, saith the LORD; and I will bring you again into the place whence I caused you to be carried away captive.” Jeremiah 29:11-14 KJV. Dear reader, are you held captive by sins or bad habits? Do you want to be free? God says that if you will seek after Him with all of your heart, then you will find Him, and He will take away your captivity, and place you where you were always meant to be, with Him in Heaven as one of His sons or daughters. Jesus says, “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. John 8:36 KJV. He has provided the way, Oh sinner, if you will accept it, He will make you free indeed! What a promise!
This text shows the connection between God’s people and the humble who will inherit the earth:For evildoers will be cut off, but those who wait for the LORD, they will inherit the land.Yet a little while and the wicked man will be no more; and you will look carefully for his place, and he will not be there. But the humble will inherit the land, and will delight themselves in abundant prosperity.” Psalm 37:9-11 NASB. We have all been evildoers at one point in our life, but if we will humble ourselves before God and wait on Him, He will help us to become one of the righteous. And remember what Jesus our Savior said, “Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.”Matthew 5:5 KJV. God told Moses to tell the people before the Day of Atonement: “If there is any person who will not humble himself on this same day, he shall be cut off from his people.” Leviticus 23:29 NASB. Why was that? Because the Day of Atonement, also known as Yom Kippur, represents the Day of Judgment, when the judgement takes place. All who wish to be clean before God, will humble themselves before Him, and will confess all of their sins. Those who will not humble themselves before Him, will be cut off from among His people, and will not go to Heaven to live throughout the endless ages with the peace, love, happiness and the delight of the saved. Those who refuse to humble themselves before God will be cut off from His people, and will then realize that they have made a terrible mistake! Many people have no idea what they will be missing if they fail to humble themselves before God and stay that way! Peter admonishes us: “Therefore, putting aside all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander, like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation, if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.” 1 Peter 2:1-3 NASB. The Psalmist, David says, “O taste and see that the LORD is good; how blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!” Psalm 34:8 NASB. Only those who have humbled themselves before God, and have tasted of the goodness to come, have a clue to the priceless treasures of peace, love, joy and delight that God wants to give His people in Heaven forever! 
Consider those who have tasted of the heavenly gift: those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come’ Hebrews 6:4-5 NASB: it is very hard for these to fall away and become lost.How could you walk away from the best thing that you have ever known or could know? Dear reader, have you tasted of this heavenly gift of the age to come? Do not stop humbling your heart, and seeking after God until you get it! You will never regret it, we promise you! So humble yourself before your God, whom you love, confess all of your sins, asking Him to be merciful to you a sinner, and you will go home justified before Him, and He will fill your heart with His love. And you will indeed taste and see that the Lord is good, and will get the taste of the Heavenly gift and of the good things in the age to come. This is our prayer for you! Amen.

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