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The Abundant Life: Meaning, Reaping, and KEEPING-Part 3

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Can we lose the abundant life?

Unfortunately, the answer is yes.

Last time we saw that having the abundant life was a byproduct of being and remaining in a right relationship with God. Therefore, anything that hinders that relationship will affect our reaping and enjoyment of it. And the biggest thing that does that—is unconfessed sin and lack of repentance.

Notice—I DID NOT say if you sin. We still sin after we are saved because our sinful nature is still present. Just read about the internal warfare that was going on inside the Apostle Paul in Romans 7.  God knows you cannot live perfectly. What He wants is for you to confess and turn away from sin when He points it out to you.

Those guilty feelings, when the Holy Spirit convicts you, are His way of showing you there’s been a breech in the relationship. God wants you to agree with Him by confessing, then repenting, and  thereby restoring that broken fellowship with Him. 

Nonetheless, you can never lose your eternal life! Once a child of God, always a child of His (Jn 10:28-29, Eph 4:30). But you can lose that relational intimacy with the One who is the source of all good things.

I have discovered that if I do the 9 things below I am able to continually experience the abundant life.

1. Confess immediately when the Holy Spirit makes you aware of your sin.

2. Repent—which is way more than just saying you’re sorry. It’s a godly sorrow and a determination to change. This typically (if not always) involves changing your thinking (Rom 12:2). And you need the Lord’s help for that! 

3. Stay dependent upon God by recognizing your continual need of Him.

4. Stay humble before your Sovereign King by continually yielding to His way. I have found that submission is a beautiful word.

5. Understand that you do not have the right to be happy. Life is not about you, but about bringing glory to our rightful King. That’s pride and self-centeredness which most definitely will keep you from experiencing the abundant life—God resists the proud (Jas 4:6). Instead, consider it an absolute privilege to be able to even come into His presence. Because it is!

6. Keep an eternal perspective during trials. Focus on the fact that the Lord is working out all things for good to those who love Him (Rom 8:28). Otherwise, you will become discouraged, disillusioned, and despairing—not the way any of us want to live (including the Lord)! You will be rewarded for your faithfulness.

7. Become a giver. Did you know that a plant’s fruit is not for solely for itself? Just as a tree bears fruit for others to eat and enjoy as well as to reproduce, we also do not bear fruit only for ourselves. I had that backwards for many years. Gratefully, the Lord showed me the error of my thinking. The principle of sowing and reaping applies big time with living a full—and fruitful life.

8. Arm yourself against Satan. Read God’s Word so you can know how to combat His lies with God’s powerful truths.

Satan cannot destroy us, but he can certainly rob us of our joy, peace and the rest of living life to its fullest.

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. (Jn 10:10)*

9. Remember that relationships are two-sided and good ones are those in which both parties mutually enjoy one another. So why not consider bringing joy to God’s heart? You might be pleasantly surprised how God will bless your socks off then!

And find out what pleases the Lord. (Eph 5:10)

So until next time my friends, ask God to help you apply these 9 principles and I promise you abundant living!

The verses on these pages will get you started in #8:

Scriptures on Managing Emotions

The Abundant Life: Scriptures to Help You Live It!

 

*English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

I Came to Give You Life More ABUNDANTLY

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The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. (Jn 10:10)

What did Jesus mean when He gave us this beautiful promise? And how in the world can I attain it? Is it for everyone—even me? Let’s see if we can study it together.

Whenever I am trying to understand the meaning of a verse, I do these things:

1. Read the verse again and its context

2. Read it in different Bible versions

3. Look up the word(s) in the original language

4. Read commentaries

5. Think about it prayerfully before and during doing all these things

Let’s go through each one of these briefly as we try to discover:

The meaning of “I came to give you life more ABUNDANTLY.”

The context

Jesus spoke these words right after he healed the man who was born blind. The Pharisees were giving Him a lot of flak and Jesus responds with that infamous metaphor of the Good Shepherd. (see Jn 9:1 to Jn 10:21)

Versions (of ending phrase)

I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (Niv)

My purpose is to give life in all its fullness. (TLB)

My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life. (NLT)

I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance [to the full, till it overflows]. (AMP)

I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of. (MSG)

I came to bring them life, and far more life than before. (PHILLIPS)

I have come in order that you might have life—life in all its fullness. (GNT)

Original language (Greek)

The idea portrayed here is: beyond what is anticipated, exceeding expectation, going past the expected limit, over and above, more than is necessary, super-added

Commentators

Barnes: “Literally, that they may have abundance, or that which abounds. The word denotes that which is not absolutely essential to life, but which is superadded to make life happy. They shall not merely have life – simple, bare existence – but they shall have all those superadded things which are needful to make that life eminently blessed and happy.”

The eternal life Jesus gives is not just how long we live, but the quality of that life, and it begins the moment you accept Jesus Christ as your Savior.

Our God is an above and beyond, exceeding our expectations (Eph 3:20), extremely generous Giver. He loves to shower His blessings on His obedient children. Our doting but wise heavenly Daddy knows how to give good gifts that satisfy our inner most being (Ps 103:5).

For now, that should be enough meat for you to chew on about what Jesus meant. I hope you will.

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I know that this has been an atypical blog. However, my desire is to help you delve deeper into the treasures of the Scriptures for yourself. So many of us are guilty of letting others do all the work. We are spooned fed Christians, becoming lazy and fat; resulting in the inability to effectively apply liberating truths in the daily ordinary.

I hope to change that by encouraging you to put out some of the effort yourself.

Yes, please continue to listen to great messages and read blogs like mine, but don’t stop there! I promise you that the gems you dig up for yourself will be well worth it! The Holy Spirit is more than capable of guiding anyone—not just biblical scholars—into all truth (Jn 16:12). All you need is an open teachable heart and a little work.

Until next time my friends, go chew on these delicious truths where I’ll explain further what I believe Jesus meant when He said, “I came to give you life more abundantly.” Trust me—it gets juicier!

 

New King James Version (NKJV) Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Living Bible (TLB) The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Amplified Bible (AMP) Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

The Message (MSG) Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson

J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS) The New Testament in Modern English by J.B Phillips copyright © 1960, 1972 J. B. Phillips. Administered by The Archbishops’ Council of the Church of England. Used by Permission.

Good News Translation (GNT) Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

 

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