HIS ENTRY INTO HEARTS

[SW225] 03/19/2016 message notes by

Reverend/Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2016

“His Entry Into Hearts”

This Sunday is Palm Sunday, when the church celebrates Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. But He wants you to focus today on His entry into your heart.

Imagine the scene in Jerusalem! The people received Jesus as a king who they thought would free them from Roman rule, but He is a different kind of King who offers a different kind of freedom — complete freedom from sin’s rule in them, and it happens when He enters a human heart.

We all are born with a heart problem called sin, and only Jesus Christ can heal us.

Texts: Psalm 84:5-6, Mark 1:1-8

Psalm 84:5-6  — How blessed is the one whose strength is the Lord, and in whose heart are the highways!

Do you want to be blessed? Or do you want to be called “blessed” by the Lord? There’s a difference.

Do you want the Lord to give you stuff, or do you want to give HIM to others? Freely you have received — His command is “freely give.” (See Matthew 10:8.)

But to freely give, a place must be made for Jesus to make a triumphal entry into your heart.

Then your heart problem will be healed so you will be a blessing to others, just according to Psalm 84:5-6, making valleys of weeping into places of fountains, sources of satisfaction that never dries up.

How does Jesus make a triumphal entry in your heart?

— You must make a highway for Him

How do you make a natural highway?

— Clear trees and brambles and brush

— Cut down hills

— Break up the rocks

— Use the broken rock (gravel) for the base

— Level the highway’s base

— Pave it and mark it

Then you have a highway.

It is the same in your heart and mine. It is a highway of repentance, confession of sin, and forgiveness (Mark 1:1-3, Isaiah 40:4-5) —

— The trees and brambles are the things “not of God” that are in your heart. You know what yours are, just like I knew what mine were.

— The hills are your pride. Humble yourself before the Lord, and He will lift you up at the proper time (1Peter 5:6).

— The rocks are the hard places in your heart, where you have not yielded to Jesus.

Confess them to the Lord, repent and ask Him to forgive you.

Then you are ready for the next phase of construction:

— The broken rock (gravel) results when you fall on Him (Matthew 21:44).

— The highway base can then be leveled, because broken rock is easy to smooth and level.

— The final paving and marking is done by prayer; you say, “O Lord, come in!”

Then your heart’s highway is prepared for Jesus Christ to triumphantly enter!
And look at what happens to you!

— You are blessed because you receive Jesus’ baptism with the Holy Spirit and fire (Mark 1:8, Matthew 3:11), and Jesus and the Father come to dwell and rule and reign in you (John 14:23). Your heart problem is healed!

— Because you are filled with the Holy Spirit, you become a blessing — even fountains and springs of satisfaction for others — as you go (for you cannot imagine sitting, or seeking blessing only for yourself!).

— You go from strength to strength (Psalm 84:7), saying with the Apostle Paul, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).

— You appear before God (Psalm 84:7), because your heart is pure and cleansed (Matthew 5:8, Acts 15:9).

— The early rains come and cover you, and the people, with blessings

Why should you care?

— Your heart problem is fatal. The wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23).

— Jesus is coming again, and He will look for you to be doing what He has asked all of His church to do (Matthew 24:45-51). You must be ready and at work!

Do not be like the people of Jerusalem who wanted Jesus to come and free them. They were only thinking of their own needs. Prepare the highway and make Jesus King in your heart!

Then He will free you from sin’s rule in you, and make you a blessing for others, because every heart has a problem, and needs His healing, through you.
Make yourself ready! Build a highway! Repent, confess your sin, and ask Jesus to forgive you.

He will surely enter your heart, you will go out and make fountains in places of weeping, and He will find you ready, when He returns.

Now I will pray for your hearts, and for your hurts.

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GLAD SHEEP

[SW196] 07/24/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“Glad Sheep”

Sheep always are glad when they hear the voice of their shepherd and see him approaching. They run to him, without delay, and obey his voice!

Jesus Christ looks around even today, and sees that His people were distressed and dispirited; that is, thrown down, a deliberate, extended hurling, a long distance.

And He says, even today, “I AM the Good Shepherd!”

Matthew 9:36   Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd.

He felt compassion for them. He was inwardly moved, because they were confused by the message that came from the Jewish leaders and priests.

They went through the religious motions as directed, but they continued to struggle with sin.

They were under Roman rule, and many were impoverished, not only by heavy Roman taxes, but false teachers who stole land, even out from under widows, and in the Temple, when offerings were given, they rigged the scales in their favor!

Worst of all,  they were under a yoke no one can bear (Acts 15:10) — a form of religious godliness that denies the power of God to change a human heart (2 Timothy 3:5).

Their teachers were hypocrites, teaching one thing and doing another. They did not enter into life, and did not allow those who were in the process of entering to actually come in. (Mt. 23:13)

What good news He shared! He is the One who will gather them and hold them in His bosom (Isaiah 40:11) — He will enclose them in a holy, intimate way, and He will be IN them!

His announcement is in John 10, right after He healed the man born blind, and His work was rebuked by the Jewish religious ones, the Pharisees.

Verse 1-2 — Highly important, truly, truly! There are thieves and robbers, false shepherds!

They climb up over the protective fence around the flock, to steal the sheep. They are being used by Satan, the chief thief.

But there is a true shepherd!

Verse 3-4 — He leads them out. and the sheep hear His voice. He knows their names, He calls them, and the sheep follow (obey!) because they know, they have intimate experience with, hearing His voice.

Verse 5 — Because they know their Shepherd’s voice they are able to discern a stranger’s voice. And they run from a stranger’s voice, because they do not know or have intimate experience with hearing the voice of that stranger.

Verse 14 — I AM the Good Shepherd, Jesus says, and I know My own and My own know Me intimately and experientially. They have experienced Me.

Verse 27 — My sheep hear My voice and I know them, and they follow (obey) Me!

What good news for sheep who obey the Good Shepherd. Their obedience is evidence that they know Him intimately, by experience.

“But what do I see, even among the flock that is Mine?” That’s what the Lord says today.

Disobedient sheep, who claim to be Mine. They do not follow me. They do not obey My voice.

They climb down onto precarious ledges to eat something that looks good to them! They have gone after ear-tickling messages from thieves and robbers!

Isaiah 65:2      “I have spread out My hands all day long to a rebellious people,
Who walk in the way which is not good, following their own thoughts . . .

Many are out on a ledge, unaware of their condition!

When it is dark, the Lord says, you will be afraid and panic because you know you can’t see to climb back up to safety.

I will wait until you are exhausted, when you have no fight left in you.

When you cry out to Me, when you are ashamed and turn from turn from going after what looks good to you, things that thieves and robbers are teaching, I will rescue you.

Then you will know that I AM the Good Shepherd, and you will ask and I will give you a heart to obey Me.

If you refuse —

Isaiah 65:13        Therefore, thus says the Lord GOD,
“Behold, My servants will eat, but you will be hungry.
Behold, My servants will drink, but you will be thirsty.
Behold, My servants will rejoice, but you will be put to shame.

14      “Behold, My servants will shout joyfully with a glad heart,
But you will cry out with a heavy heart,
And you will wail with a broken spirit.
15      “You will leave your name for a curse to My chosen ones,
And the Lord GOD will slay you.
But My servants will be called by another name.”

You who are on a precarious ledge, turn now! Repent now! Cry out now!

He will go out of His way to go and get you, when you cry out (Luke 15:1ff)!

Do not wait — the hour is late and the time is short!

Come into the fold of the Good Shepherd, and He will lead you!

STAIN REMOVAL

[SW191] 06/19/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“Stain Removal”

Today I want to talk with you about laundry, because we must appear before our King without stain or wrinkle.

Texts spoken to God’s children, Judah, while they were in captivity in Babylon:

Ezekiel 36:25 “Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols.

Ezekiel 36:26 “Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  27 “I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.”

Ephesians 5:25   Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her,  26 so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,
Ephesians 5:27 that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.

Well, we’re talking here about cleansing and stains and wrinkles. Now the Lord showed me some things about stains.

A stain can have an external source — spaghetti sauce, barbecue sauce from ribs, grease grape juice, and such.

When you see it, you can treat it with stain remover, or scrub it, or bleach it, or soak it. And sooner or later, it will come out. Sometimes we have to be persistent, if it’s a really bad stain.

The Lord says through Ezekiel in 36:25 that he will sprinkle clean water on us, and we will be clean.

He’ll cleanse you from all your sins you have committed in the past, the actions you did that were against Him, when you see them and see Him as our Savior and turn from them and ask Him to remove these external things, the actions you have done against Him.

You have soiled ourselves with them, and we are stained with them, but the Launderer is here to clean you up! He is our Launderer, and the word for that in the Bible is “fuller.” The Lord says,

Malachi 3:2 “But who can endure the day of His [Jesus’] coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap.”
He’s going to scrub you clean! He specializes in stain removal!

Now we must go on.

Some stains have an internal source, something that comes from inside you. Underarm stains and stains around the collar are from perspiration. Even if you remove those stains from your clothing, they will come back again, because they come from something inside you. The only way to stop them would be to stop perspiring!

Beloved, you have something that comes from inside you that stains the outside of you, and no matter how many times you ask the Lord to forgive you, they keep reappearing, and they will continue, unless the source is treated. And that inward condition separates you from your God (Isaiah 59:2), because you continue to sin against Him after you have become His child, just as Israel did.

Jeremiah 2:22 “Although you wash yourself with lye
And use much soap,
The stain of your iniquity is before Me,” declares the Lord GOD.

We sing, “My CHAINS are gone, I’ve been set free.” But maybe we ought to sing “My STAINS are gone, I’ve been set free,” because removing the STAINS removes the CHAINS!

The wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23), so you must not continue to sin against God after coming to Him through His Son. But there’s something INSIDE you that keeps causing the stain of sin.

What can you do? Are you stuck in sin forever, like the man in Romans 7? Knowing what’s right and yet doing what’s wrong?

No! What does the Lord say, in Ezekiel 36:26-27? He will not only sprinkle clean water on us externally, but He ALSO promises that if we ask Him (Luke 11:13), He will put a new heart and a new spirit within us — His!

He will remove the source of the stain of sin, the sin nature that’s in you, the one you inherited from your father, Adam! He will remove that iniquity, the source, that inward perverseness and twistedness, that results in continued outward stains!

He will remove the heart of stone, the one that is hardened over and rebellious, and put a heart of flesh in us, one that will respond to His every whisper. When He does laundry, He really does LAUNDRY!

When He baptizes you with HIS Spirit, you will walk in His ways and be obedient to Him. And you will love Him with His love (Romans 5:5)! And you will be a witness of Jesus Christ who saved you and cleaned you up inside and out (Acts 1:8)! And you will have a holy, intimate relationship called fellowship, with the Father and the Son:

1John 1:3 what we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ.  4 These things we write, so that our [also yours!]  joy may be made complete.

This cleansing gives great joy to God the Father, and God the Son gives you His joy, and we all rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory (1Peter 1:8)!

Now the Lord wants me to say something else, too:

Ephesians 5:27 that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory [a glorious church, in the King James version of the Bible] , having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.

I have spoken of spots and stains. But I must talk about wrinkles, too.

The Lord showed me that even when I have carefully pressed a skirt, when I sit down for a while and then get up, I will find it has wrinkled. I have to apply some heat with an iron to get the wrinkles out again. But as soon as I sit down again, they’ll come back.

Beloved, the church is wrinkled because she has been sitting in one place for too long! She has all kinds of creases in her because she has become complacent and comfortable! Who can get these wrinkles out? Only Jesus Christ can do it!

You must let Him apply some heat to you, beloved. You must let Him baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire, and you won’t want anything to do with sitting down! You’ll run, dance, jump, and walk about with His name continually on your lips! He will make you holy by filling you with His holiness, blameless and faultless in His eyes because your motives and heart are pure and totally His!

He is ready now to rid you of your frustration, your rebellion, and your complacency. He is ready to rid you of your stains. He is ready to rid you of your wrinkles.

Are you willing to agree with Him that you have stains you can’t get rid of, no matter how hard you scrub and soak? Are you ready to agree with Him that you have wrinkles because you have sat in one place for too long?

Agree, and He will baptize you with the Holy Ghost and fire! Not just your chains, but your stains will be gone, and you will be set free, indeed!

What’s this got to do with daily living? What’s this got to do with all the problems you have?

Everything! If He changes you inside, then your circumstances will also change BECAUSE YOU HAVE BEEN CHANGED. That stain, your inward rebellion against Him will be gone, you will be at peace with Him, and these things will be reflected in your life.

You will become a change agent in your own life and the lives of others. You will become a minister of reconciliation, and an ambassador for your King (2 Corinthians 5:18, 20).

And church, you will get off your duffs and on your heavenly assignment!

And that stain that kept coming back? It’ll be gone for good, because the inward source is gone!

2Corinthians 7:1   Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

1Peter 4:1   Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin,  2 so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God.

Let us say to the Lord, “We agree!” That’s our part in the cleansing. Let us say, “Let our sin nature be put to death so we no longer sin against you!” Amen!

GOD’S WAYS

[SW188] 06/06/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“God’s Ways”

Text: Isaiah 55, Matthew 5:44ff

Seek the Lord!

The Lord said this to His people at the time of Isaiah, and He says it to His people now, both the church and Israel:

Isaiah 55:1 I cry out to you! Are you thirsty? Really thirsty, to the point where you will die if you don’t have some water? Then come to My waters. Not natural waters, but waters that give you eternal life, and I’ll make that life flow from your belly, when you are filled with the Holy Spirit (John 7:37-39).

Are you poor to the point where you have no money? Then come to My store. Not a natural store, but provision from My heavenly storehouse. Heavenly treasures!
I’ll give you true nourishment that costs you nothing. It is a gift!

Isaiah 55:2  It’s no surprise to Me, but I pose this question to you. How do you spend the money you work so hard to get?  You spend money for bread, but it isn’t the kind of bread that will satisfy you fully. Only I have that bread.

What you’re buying in the natural cannot possibly satisfy you — be it status, love, food, clothing, a car, or a house, or an alteration of your physical body. These things are worthless. They will never satisfy you. Only a holy, intimate relationship with Me can satisfy.

If you will listen carefully to Me, and eat My words which are good for you, you will find abundant life (John 10:10). THEN you will be satisfied.

Isaiah 53:3  Come to Me through My Son, Jesus Christ (Matthew 11:28-30). Listen to Me, and you will have eternal life.

If you bend your ear, if you make it bow down to My words, I will give you the same promise I made to David, to whom I also showed great mercy — My compassion and love.

I will make you My house here and now, and I will give you an eternal kingdom in which to live, and you will rule and reign with My Son.

Isaiah 53:4 You will become a witness to everyone on earth (Acts 1:8).

Isaiah 53:5  I will fill you with My glory, and people from all over the earth will run, not walk, to you. I’ll do it because you have given your heart to Me and no other god, and I am your God, the Holy One of Israel.

Isaiah 53:6  This is a limited time offer. I am near now, I am able to be found now. It will not always be so.

Isaiah 53:7 You must turn from your wickedness and your thoughts, which are evil and nothingness. You must turn to Me.

If you do, I will have compassion on you and will receive you and abundantly pardon you!

Isaiah 53:8  Your ways are far from My ways, but if you will ask me to baptize you in the Holy Spirit and fire, My people, I will give you My nature and My love and My heart and you will be filled!

Your ways are wicked and your thoughts are unrighteous. These are not My ways. I am holy, I am good, I am righteous. You are not these things, but if you will bend your ear and listen and heed and do what I am telling you now, you will easily walk in My ways, for My yoke is easy and My burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30).

Your ways are far from Mine in another way, too. If someone does evil to you, your response is to dismiss them, to reject them, and never reconcile to them.

My ways and thoughts are ENTIRELY different from yours! They are higher. They are excellent and worthy of praise. I abundantly pardon the greatest of sinners. Even if someone has rejected and cast Me to the side for many years and yet claimed to be Mine, I will receive them when they turn.

To My people who have been exiled to Babylon, I said:

Jeremiah 29:13 “You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.”

And I have said:

Deuteronomy 4:29 “But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul.”

I am faithful, and just as rain and snow are bound to water the earth and cause great abundance, so is My Word bound to cause abundance in you. But you have a choice. I have given you free will. You may reject My Word, or you may receive it and let Me do in your heart the thing that only I can do.

If you do receive it, you will have this promise — you will go out with joy and be led forth in peace. My Son, Jesus Christ, will give you His joy, and He, the Prince of Peace, will lead you and you will not stray any longer.

Everything in creation will respond to the joy that is in you, to My presence that is in you. People from all over, and everywhere you go, will be drawn to you, drawn to My life and My love and My Spirit in you.

And nothing will destroy My Holy Spirit in you. When you are filled with My Spirit, no one can take Him away from you, and He will not leave. He cannot be crushed, and He does not diminish. No one can destroy Him, cause Him to leave you, or cause His witness in you to fade. He is eternal, and He is in you; therefore, Your ways are My ways and your thoughts are My thoughts.

Do not delay — this is a limited time offer, O Israel, O church. Return to Me and I will return to you.

A NEW NAME

[SW188] 05/29/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“A New Name”

Text: Isaiah 62:1-5, Romans 5:6-10

God’s great desire is to give you a new name — a new reputation, a new nature, a new character — His!

You must understand Romans 5:6-10, agree with God about your rebellion against Him (sin), and receive what Jesus Christ did for you on the cross. Then God gives you MANY new names. Here are just a few —

OLD NAME                 NEW NAME

Under God’s wrath          Saved from God’s wrath

Sinner                             Forgiven

Dead                              Raised to life

Blind                              One who sees

In the dark                     In Christ’s light

Far away                        Brought near

In a fog                          In the clear

Existing                         Living life as God has it

Addict                           Free

Porn-lover                    Christ-lover

Beaten                         Protected by God’s power

Possessed                   Delivered

Wounded child            Child of God

Broken                         Whole

Hopeless                     Hope-filled

Sick, with no cure        Healed

And THEN, when you ask your heavenly Father to fill you with the Holy Ghost (Luke 11:13) —

OLD NAME                          NEW NAME

Slave to sin                          Set free from sin

Double-minded                   Christ-minded

Divided heart                       Pure heart

Depressed                           Full of Christ’s joy

Witness of Adam’s nature    Witness of Christ’s nature

Beloved, when He gives you a new name, He changes you!!!!!! Do you believe it?

Beloved, today’s church doesn’t mention sin, just blessings. They don’t want you to feel bad about yourself. But you must see yourself through God’s eyes, see the name you now have, and understand your need for a new name! By not mentioning sin and not requiring repentance in order to be “saved,” today’s church DEPRIVES YOU of the true blessing of transformation of your character, reputation, nature and future!

Look at the transformations God has done —

Abram (exalted father) became Abraham (father of multitudes) — Genesis 17:5.

Sarai (princess) became Sarah (mother of nations) — Genesis 17:15.

Jacob (supplanter, schemer) became Israel (he who strives with God) — Genesis 32:28.

Simon (hearer) became Peter (a piece of rock) — Matthew 16:18.

The woman with the issue of blood, who had to cry, “Unclean” when she was in public,
became “Daughter” — Mark 5:34.

He changes your character, your reputation, your nature, your future. Will you believe Him?

People will say of you:

“How you have changed! What has happened?” (No one will miss the old “you.”)

“You are free as a bird! How did that happen?”

“You are healed! That’s impossible!”

“Your face glows! How can that be?”

“I’ve never seen a love like yours! You even love those who hate you!”

“I can feel the joy that’s in you when I’m near you!”

“You have a peace I can’t even comprehend!”

“How can you be patient in such a frustrating situation?”

“I have never seen such kindness and caring from you!”
“You have such great faith in Jesus Christ?”

“How can you be so full of hope when everything looks hopeless?”

“You are so gentle and humble — you never used to be that way!”

And you will be able to tell them what God has done in you, through Jesus Christ, and by the power of His Holy Spirit.

And here is another powerful truth —

When men try to label you with one of their names, your character, your reputation, and your nature will not conform to their name!

In captivity in Babylon, three Hebrew young men were renamed by a Babylonian commander—

GOD’S NAME                            MAN’S NAME

Hananiah (YHWH is gracious)     Shadrach (circuit of the sun/sun worship in view)

Mischael (who is what God is)    Meshach (who is what Aka, a Babylon god, is)

Azariah (YHWH has helped)       Abed-nego (servant of Nego, a Babylonian god)

But when they were commanded to worship King Nebucadnezzar’s image, they refused and remained loyal to God, even when their lives were at stake.

No man will be able to change your nature, your reputation, and your character when God has given you a new name!

I tell you, beloved, He wants to give you a new name today. But you must agree with Him that you need one, just as Israel needed to agree with Him in Isaiah 62:2.

They were “not yet” (see verse 1), just as some who are watching are “not yet.” You’re still rebellious against God.

You’re still going your own way.

You confess that you are a Christian, but you live like the devil.

And church, you do the same! And you are exiled from the presence of God; He is not with you right now.

But I will not keep quiet until your righteousness goes forth like the dawn, and your salvation like a burning torch!

I will give the Lord no rest until He makes you a praise in the earth (Isaiah 62:7)!

Believe God, confess your sin, turn from it, ask God to forgive you through the precious blood of Jesus Christ! He will make you a child of God!

THEN ask God the Father for His Holy Spirit, and He will fill you and make you a witness to His Son, Jesus Christ!

RAIN!

[SW187] 05/22/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“Rain”

Pentecost — what is it? The fulfillment of God’s promise to pour out His Spirit, and Jesus Christ’s promise that even today, if we wait, He will fill us and make us His witnesses!

Texts: Joel 2:23-25, 28-29 and others

Rain!

Life-giving

— Even from that which looks dead

Life-sustaining

Comes from above

Pours out

Saturates

Dryness departs

Makes workable the hard and cracked soil

Produces beauty

Produces food

Refreshes

Cleanses

Restores

Fills

Overflows

Prophesied — in the midst of drought, famine, and locusts (Joel 2:23ff)

Prayed for — in the midst of rebuilding, but under the rule of those who did not serve God (Zechariah 10:1ff)

Poured out — Acts 2

The result? As above!!!!!

AND . . .

Unified in nature, now partakers of the divine nature (John 17:23, 2Peter 1:4)

Sanctified through and through (John 17:19, Thessalonians 5:23)

Liberty (2Corinthians 3:17)! From what?

Super-conquerors (Romans 8:37)! Of what?
Sin itself and slavery to it (John 8:31-36)!

THEN we are His witnesses!

LORD, MAKE ME RIGHT!

[SW184] 05/02/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“Lord, Make Me Right!”

Texts:

2Corinthians 5:15 and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf.

2Corinthians 5:21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

Now, when you say, “Lord, make me right,” you’re not asking Him to help you win an argument, religious or otherwise.

You’re asking Him to make you what you cannot possibly be without Jesus Christ. The “might” in 2Corinthians 5:21 means “would.” There’s no question that He will!

You’re asking Him to make you right with HIM.

That’s righteousness — being right with God. It’s a heart thing, a change in you that cost the Cross for His Son.

And I see that He took that cross so we would no longer live for ourselves. We would no longer be selfish and self-centered. We would live for Christ who died and rose again to make us able to live for Him.

Being right with God isn’t about doing good things. No one do enough good things to make yourself right in God’s eyes.

There’s only one Way. His Son.

Why is there only one Way to be right in God’s eyes?

Because we begin life as sinners; we all do. No one is exempt. We’re all rebels without a cause. That’s because of Adam’s rebellion against God’s single command, in the Garden of Eden.

God knew he would, and already had prepared a lamb for sacrifice, even before the world was formed (Revelation 13:8). That’s why there’s only one Way. It cost Him greatly — the sacrifice of His Son on our behalf — even from before time began.

Why would He do that? Because sin separates you from God. He gave — that’s a gift — His one and only Son, so sins you committed before you knew Him would be forgiven by Him, and slavery to sin could be done away with.

Then you can come near to Him. Then you can become His child (Romans 8:15)! Then you can live for His Son and not yourself any longer! Then others are drawn and saved and transformed so they, too, live for His Son!

Lord, make me right! Not like the Pharisees who dotted i’s and crossed t’s to try to show God how good they were, who studied the Word of God backwards and forwards.

He knew the hearts of the Pharisees, Sadducees, chief priests and Sanhedrin. He knew they would be His Son’s persecutors and executioners. Crucify Him! That’s what they cried to the Romans who ruled over them.

Dotting i’s and crossing t’s is an outward action. Good deeds are outward actions. You can do all the right things, yet have a heart dark enough to crucify the Son of God.

Luke 18:9-14

Look at Jesus’ judgment of the publican and the tax collector in this parable.

The publican wasn’t really praying. He was in a prayerful position and in the temple, a place of prayer, but all he did was boast about how well he did, following all the rules and regulations of the law given to God by Moses. He was proud of himself.

In Verse 9, the publican’s own words reveal his heart even further. He is beyond boastful. He tells God, “I’m not like OTHER people.” You know the ones, Lord — those who are swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector who is here in the temple with me. See me? I do everything right. They don’t.

In the heart of that man, who did all the right things, was contempt for others (v. 1). He trusted in himself and how many right things he did, how well he dotted i’s and crossed t’s, how many good deeds he did. He was so good in his own eyes that he considered that he was better than all those wicked sinners. He was sure he was doing just fine. But his heart was all wrong.

I hope that doesn’t describe you. I know it doesn’t describe me, because I no longer live for myself, but for Christ. I do not boast in what I have done, but in what He has done, is doing, and will yet do in me.

He showed my heart to me when He woke me up by allowing a great shaking of everything in me that could be shaken.

It was mercy and grace from God. What? Being sick with progressive MS was mercy and grace from God? It was what woke me up and turned me back to Him. It was grace, indeed!

I went back to church after nearly a lifetime away from God. I knew something was missing in my life, and I knew it was Him.

This is important — I didn’t want anything FROM God. I just wanted God!

My pastor led this old black sheep to look at Jesus Christ. I began to read the Bible, the Word of God. And I began to see myself as I truly was. It wasn’t pretty.

But oh, my! I didn’t just see how bad I was. I saw how good HE is! Grace and mercy!

And so I cried out to Him, for mercy, like the tax collector! “God, be merciful to me, the sinner!” Now that’s what God would have liked to hear from the Pharisee. Save me, bring me near, O God! Change my heart! I want to know You! My sin, my pride, my high estimation of myself stands in the way!

Who went away justified? The tax collector. God forgave him of his past sins. That’s God’s mercy and grace, He forgave me for all my past sins, when I received Him as my Lord and Savior. But He wasn’t finished yet. I still struggled with sin.

Then I said, “Lord make me right!” Lord, make me right on the inside, make my HEART right! He’ll do the same for you. That’s why His Father sent Him. Then you’ll live for Him!

Christianity is not about do’s and don’ts, though you will do things that are right in God’s eyes when you are truly His.

It won’t be to impress people with your goodness. That’s pride, and in comparing yourself with others, you show that you have contempt in your heart. You are yet like the Pharisee.

But when you have Him in you, you will do things that are right in God’s eyes. It will be because you know that it is HIS blood that washed you clean, HIS righteousness that is now in you. And there’s more.

When you are filled with His Holy Spirit, pride flees, beloved! You will say, “THE LORD answered my prayer, and HE made my HEART right, HE is continuing to make me more and more like Him every day!”

He gets all the praise, all the honor, for it is HIS work in you (Philippians 2:12)!

HIS holiness in you, HIS love in you, HIS Holy Spirit large and in charge. HE makes you right, and then what you do is for the right reason — out of a complete and absolute compulsion to use every means to bring everyone else to that shaking place, where they see themselves as they truly are, and cry out, “Lord, make me right!”

You  tell them the very, very, very Good News of Jesus Christ! You tell them your story, so they might see Jesus Christ in you and through you!

Rushing, flood-stage rivers of water flow from your belly — the Holy Spirit (John 7:38)!

Glory to God! The Lord makes you right!

Ask Him now, and He will do it!