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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Train in Jim Thorpe, PA 11/2/14
Lehigh Gorge Railroad engine
Jim Thorpe, PA

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"Life Row"

"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 6:23).

Since Jesus Came Into My Heart"There’s a light in the valley of death now for me,
Since Jesus came into my heart!
And the gates of the City beyond I can see,
Since Jesus came into my heart!"

In church we recently sang, "Since Jesus Came Into My Heart." When the above verse appeared on the screen, "There's a light in the valley of death now for me" at first glance I mistakenly saw the words "death row" instead of "death now".

To myself, I cried out, "Whew, I'm sure glad I'm not on death row", a thought that had never crossed my mind before, nor the extent of the burden I would bear knowing my execution was scheduled. Suddenly, it was as though the Holy Spirit stopped me in my thought process and said, "But you were on Death Row".

Romans 6:23

Romans 6:23 tells us "The wages of sin is death" - the wages I earned put me on death row.

But since Jesus came into my heart - I received the free gift from God - eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. Praise God, I am now on life row!

Let us focus on the words, "gift of God". Gift translates the Greek word "charisma", which is itself derived from "charis." Charis is that wonderful word normally translated "grace" in our Bibles. Of course many will recall the simple, yet descriptive definition of grace as, "unmerited favor." It would also be accurate to translate this as "grace gift”.

This gift stands out. There are no catches and the offer is extended to all. There are no waiting lines or no limited supply. It is available to all people, "to every nation and tribe and tongue and people" (Revelation 14:6). Millions now living and millions more who are now with the Lord can testify to its veracity and lasting value of this gift.

Near the very end of the Book of Revelation we read about this free gift again, "Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life" (Revelation 22:17).

Free gift
What is this free gift? "Eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord".

What's your response to the free gift of salvation? Rejoice that you have been chosen by God to receive this grace gift of eternal life through salvation in Jesus Christ! Have you asked Jesus to come into Your heart? If not, do so today and receive His free gift that keeps on giving - eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. Join us on life row.

Since Jesus came into my heart,
Since Jesus came into my heart,
Floods of joy o’er my soul
Like the sea billows roll,
Since Jesus came into my heart.

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, when Jesus gave His all as a sacrifice for our sins You made available to us the free gift of salvation that is for all eternity. We cannot pay for our forgiveness nor can we repay Jesus for His sacrifice for our sins. All we give in return is a heart surrendered to His plan for our lives here on earth that will be more fully experienced in the great beyond. May our hearts be set on things above where Christ is seated at Your right hand. Thank You for not giving us the wages we earned and sentencing us to death row, but instead You give us eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Since Jesus Came Into My Heart"   Video  Homecoming singers

"Since Jesus Came Into My Heart"  Video  Canton Junction (a bit more bluegrass sound)

I took today's lead photo of the engine on the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway several weeks ago when we stopped by Jim Thorpe on the way back from a visit to the Poconos.

Video of bike train  (My kind of background music!)

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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