The Kimberly Joy Blog

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Tag: Easter

Today Is a Good Day!

THE KIMBERLY JOY SHOW: Father, Into Your Hands I Commit My Spirit

TODAY IS A GOOD DAY: WHAT DOES GOOD FRIDAY REPRESENT?

Today is a good day! It’s Friday! And it’s not just Friday; it’s Good Friday! Good Friday represents the day Jesus was crucified, died and was buried. Now, it’s not to suggest that this is the actual day He died. It simply represents it!

WHAT WERE JESUS’ FINAL WORDS BEFORE HE DIED?

As was mentioned in the previous article “The Passion of the Christ,” Jesus endured great suffering, more than we could ever fathom, in order for us to be saved from sin and eternal damnation. According to Luke 23:46 (New International Version), His final words were  “Father, into Your hands I commit My Spirit.” He then breathed His last breath and died.

While Jesus was on earth, He lived as a man. In other words, although He is divine, He experienced what it’s like to be human. He entered this world by way of a natural birth. He was raised by Mary and her husband Joseph. He ate, slept, cried and got angry. He was lied on, ridiculed, mishandled and abused. Satan even tempted Him, but as Hebrews 4:15 states, Jesus still did not sin.

WHAT HAPPENS TO AN INDIVIDUAL WHEN HE OR SHE DIES?

When an individual dies, there is a separation of the body, soul and spirit. In Genesis 3:19, God told Adam that because he came from the dust, one day he would return to the dust. Ecclesiastes 12:7 (NIV) also says:

“…the dust will return to the earth, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.”

Then, the soul, which consists of one’s will, mind and emotions experiences eternal life or eternal death. Matthew 10:28 (New Living Translation) states:

“Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body; they cannot touch your soul. Fear only God, who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”

I share those scriptures to reiterate what happened to Jesus during His last moments on the cross. He left His human body and committed His Spirit back to God. He let go and died.

Jesus’s crucifixion marked the end of His work on earth, and He did a great work! Everything He did serves as examples of what we as believers are to do today. Jesus taught and preached to many. He healed the blind, deaf, mute, crippled and paralyzed. He healed those with incurable diseases and resurrected the dead. He even embraced the poor and castaways.

Missionaries having Bible study in a small village

HOW EXACTLY DID JESUS DIE?

When Jesus was finally arrested, He didn’t put up a fight. Why? He knew it was His time to die. Therefore, as He hung on the cross, He committed His Spirit back to God the Father. In other words, Jesus CHOSE to die in that moment. Men didn’t kill Him. His enemies didn’t take Him out. Satan couldn’t even destroy Jesus.

Our pastor Apostle Ron Banks often states that if any other human being had been beaten the way Jesus was, he or she would have died before going to the cross. In fact, Jesus wasn’t just beaten, He was flogged. In other words, He was beaten with a whip containing sharp pieces of metal. So, every time the whip hit His body, it ripped His flesh. Nevertheless, despite the severe beating, He still didn’t die. Jesus said in John 10:17-18 (NLT):

“…I sacrifice My life so I may take it back again. 18 No one can take My life from Me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again….”

Just as Jesus gave up His life and committed His Spirit to God, we are to give up our sinful lives and commit our all to God. That is the greatest way in which we can show our appreciation for His sacrifice. Many of us follow rituals during this holiday season. We give up something for Lent. We hold fish frys. We preach “The Seven Last Words of Jesus” on Good Friday. We shop for the perfect Easter outfit. We go to the barber shop and hair salon. We take pictures of our children sitting on the Easter bunny’s lap, give them Easter baskets and let them participate in the annual Easter egg hunt. Finally, we fill up the church pews on Easter Sunday.

Now, I’m not criticizing said rituals. We enjoy them! They bless us! However, what matters most to God is that we surrender our lives to Him and strive daily to please Him. That is THEE greatest way we can say, “Thank You Jesus for sacrificing Your life for mine!”

THE PRAYER OF SALVATION

If you haven’t accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, you can do so right now. I then encourage you to find a good Bible-believing church that will help you grow in your relationship with the Lord.

Romans 10:9 (New International Version) says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Please pray the following prayer:

Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so I could be free! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY OF GOD!!!!!

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The Passion of the Christ

THE KIMBERLY JOY SHOW: My God, My God, Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?

THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST: WHY DO WE HONOR JESUS?

Next week, churches everywhere will be celebrating the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Although we, as believers, should praise Him every day for what He has done for us, Easter or, as some Christians like to term it, Resurrection Sunday is a special day to honor Him.

Why do we honor Jesus? He sacrificed His life for us! The word “passion” is often used in reference to the suffering and death of Jesus, which is why award-winning actor Mel Gibson titled his 2004 film The Passion of the Christ.

Many consider this film to be the most accurate portrayal of Jesus’ crucifixion. However, even with the graphic details, we’ll never know just how much pain Jesus experienced in order for us to be saved.

WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT JESUS’ SUFFERING?

  1. Jesus was betrayed and handed over to His enemies by Judas, one of His very own disciples, for 30 pieces of silver, which would be equivalent to $600 (Matthew 26:15).
  2. When Jesus was arrested, His disciples deserted Him. Even Peter, who had claimed that he would willingly die with Jesus, denied knowing Him on three separate occasions (Mark 14:50; Luke 22:54-62).
  3. At His trial, Jesus was falsely accused, so His enemies could justify executing Him (Matthew 27:11-26).
  4. Jesus was spit in His face (Matthew 26:67).
  5. Jesus was slapped and punched repeatedly (Matthew 26:67).
  6. Jesus was ridiculed, mocked and even cursed (Matthew 27:29).
  7. Jesus was flogged or severely beaten with a leather strap containing bits of sharp metal (John 19:1).
  8. Jesus was stripped of His clothes which were gambled away (Matthew 27:35).
  9. Jesus had a crown of thorns placed on His head (Matthew 27:29).
  10. Jesus was nailed to the cross (Matthew 27:35).
  11. Jesus was pierced in His side as blood and water gushed out (John 19:34).
  12. Jesus was humiliated as He hung on the cross for the public to witness (Matthew 27:37).


DID GOD ABANDON JESUS AS HE HUNG ON THE CROSS?

According to Matthew 27:46 (King James Version), during the crucifixion around three o’clock in the afternoon, in the midst of His agonizing pain, Jesus cried out as loud as He could:

“Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?”

But, wait! There’s one problem! Abandoning His only begotten Son doesn’t sound like God!!!! After all, Deuteronomy 31:6 (KJV) says:

“Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, He it is that doth go with thee; He will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.”

King David also declared in Psalms 23:1 (KJV):

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”

Then in verse four he said:

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me.”

The scriptures don’t lie! God is omnipresent! God was there! Nevertheless, in those final hours, Jesus, who was in a fleshly body capable of experiencing pain and suffering, felt abandoned.

Have you ever felt like God had abandoned you? That He wasn’t listening? That He didn’t care about your suffering?

Well, that’s how the man Jesus felt! Prior to this moment, Jesus always declared, “I and My Father are one,” (John 10:30, KJV). Jesus only spoke what His Father told Him to speak. Not once did He disobey Him. He always found time to get alone and pray. Everything Jesus did was to glorify God because They are one! They are in sync! But now, He didn’t feel in sync with the Father.

WHY DIDN’T GOD RESPOND TO JESUS WHILE HE WAS ON THE CROSS?

In those final hours on the cross, God the Father didn’t respond to Jesus. He didn’t comfort Him. He didn’t give Him medicine to ease His pain. He didn’t swoop down to rescue Jesus. He didn’t even whisper words of comfort in His ear. “I’m here Son! I’m here!”

Jesus had to fulfill God’s divine plan. He had to endure the suffering for a crime He did NOT commit! He had to sacrifice His life for us and for those who were crucifying, mocking, beating, spitting on, and cursing Him. He had to serve as our Mediator and Intercessor and stand in the gap for mankind. And this process didn’t involve any short cuts. He realized this when He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane. In the garden, He experienced severe mental pain, sadness, and uneasiness. He felt like He was dying. Therefore, He had to pray fervently in order to gain the strength necessary to face the cross.

Jesus suffered for us all, so we might have a chance at eternal life. I include the word “might” because we each have to choose Him. We don’t just choose Him when we first get saved, but EVERY DAY we should choose Jesus. Let’s always choose to follow, obey and honor Him. And why do we honor Jesus again? He chose us!!!

THE PRAYER OF SALVATION

If you haven’t accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, you can do so right now. I then encourage you to find a good Bible-believing church that will help you grow in your relationship with the Lord.

Romans 10:9 (New International Version) says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Please pray the following prayer:

Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so I could be free! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY OF GOD!!!!!

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JESUS IS ALIVE!!!!!

JESUS IS ALIVE
Jesus is alive! Contrary to what some people believe, Jesus lives! Yes, He was beaten! He was nailed to the cross! He was pierced in His side! He wore a crown of thorns on His head! He died on that cross! His body was placed in a tomb!

BUT, three days later, He was resurrected! The tomb was found empty!

And He now lives forevermore!!!

I am saved today because of Jesus! Therefore, I never get tired of hearing the story of His crucifixion and resurrection. In fact, we, as believers, should remember and meditate on the story more than just once a year on Easter Sunday, because it serves as a reminder of His love for us.

HE SUFFERED FOR US

Have you ever considered what Jesus truly went through for us? Have you thought about the pain He endured so that we could be set free from our sins? Can you fathom the agony He suffered so that we won’t have to experience hell and eternal damnation? Can you?

What Jesus endured, no human being would have been able to go through that! As a matter of fact, the Bible tells us that Jesus was tortured before He even got to the cross. He was spit on! He was punched in His face repeatedly! Moreover, He was scourged or flogged! I use those particular words in place of words, like beaten or whipped, because the brutality they inflicted upon Jesus surpasses anything we could ever comprehend.

What is scourging/flogging? Just before Jesus was taken to the cross, they removed His clothes and scourged him. In scourging, a soldier used a whip which was made of leather straps that were embedded with metal and glass fragments with small metal balls sewn into the end of each strap. Each time this particular whip hit Jesus on His bare back, it tore His skin off, exposing muscle, maybe even His very bones.

We can only imagine the amount of blood He lost, as a result! And this happened BEFORE He was even crucified. Bible scholars say that the average person would have, more than likely, been dead from just the scourging.

So, again, NO ONE could have done for mankind what Jesus did! In fact, how many people would have been willing to die for ALL humanity, to take on the sins of the WORLD? I know from history that individuals have sacrificed their lives for their family, for their race, for their religion, for their country, but not for ALL mankind.

THE ULTIMATE SACRIFICE
Jesus is the ONLY one who has made the ultimate sacrifice. Jesus sacrificed His life for those who knew Him and had spent time with Him, like His disciples, and for those who didn’t yet know Him, like you and me. He sacrificed His life on that cross for those who loved Him and for those who hated Him. Can you imagine giving up your life for people you KNOW hate your guts? Think about it! I can’t imagine doing that! That’s why I’m not Jesus.

Jesus paid the price because He LOVES us! In fact, Jesus demonstrated nothing but love during the whole ordeal. He showed love when one of His own disciples Judas Iscariot betrayed him right into the hands of His enemies for thirty pieces of silver.

Have you ever been betrayed by someone close to you? How did you respond? In Jesus’ case, He didn’t fight back and had no intentions of fighting back. Luke 22:49-51 (NLT) say:

49 When the other disciples saw what was about to happen, they exclaimed, “Lord, should we fight? We brought the swords!”
50 And one of them struck at the high priest’s slave, slashing off his right ear.
51 But Jesus said, “No more of this.” And He touched the man’s ear and healed him.

That’s how Jesus reacted, and He willingly went with them.

As Jesus was being interrogated and ridiculed, He remained calm. He didn’t retaliate. He didn’t even use His words to curse them. When Isaiah prophesied about Jesus’ crucifixion, he said in Isaiah 53:7 (NLT):

“He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet He never said a word. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, He did not open His mouth.”

During the ridicule, the beatings, and the crucifixion, Jesus never complained. He never spewed words of hate.

FATHER FORGIVE THEM

Furthermore, as Jesus was hanging on the cross, according to Luke 23:34 (KJV), He said to God the Father:

“Father forgive them; for they know not what they do…”

Can you believe it? In the midst of all the evil being done to Him, He asked God to forgive them! Jesus was pleading with God on behalf of His enemies, on behalf of the ones who had zero respect for Him, on behalf of the ones who despised Him. He was pleading with God to neither be angry with them, nor hold their actions against them. Talk about LOVE!

There’s a song that the worship leaders at our church sing sometimes. It says:

“Jesus went to Calvary
to save a wretch,
like you and me;
that’s love, that’s love.

They hung Him high,
they stretched Him wide.
He hung His head, for me He died;
that’s love, that’s love.

That’s not how the story ends,
three days later He rose again;
that’s love, that’s love.”

That final verse of the song is the most important piece of this whole story. Jesus rose again! Jesus lives! He’s alive! Because Jesus rose again, those of us who have accepted Him as Lord and Savior, now have new lives. I Corinthians 15:20-22 (NLT) say:

“20 But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead. He is the first of a great harvest of all who have died.
21 So you see, just as death came into the world through a man (Adam), now the resurrection from the dead has begun through another man (Jesus).
22 Just as everyone dies because we all belong to Adam, everyone who belongs to Christ will be given new life.”

For those of us who have repented of our sins and believed and confessed that Jesus is Lord, we are new. Therefore, when we leave this earth, we will gain everlasting life.

Now, for those who are not yet saved, you can receive Jesus right now! All you have to do is pray this prayer:

Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing that I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe that You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so that I could be FREE! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!!!!!

I now welcome you to the family of God!

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Easter: A Joyous Occasion

A JOYOUS OCCASION
Our family has always viewed Easter as a joyous occasion. Each year, for as long as I can remember, I would get a brand new dress, shoes and purse. My brother BJ would get a brand new suit, tie and shoes. My mom, who has always been a very classy and well-dressed woman, would get a brand new outfit, as well.

The church I grew up in was Mt. Olive Holy Temple in Lincoln Heights, a suburb of Cincinnati. Most of us members were related to each other. In fact, my great uncle was the pastor, the late Bishop Timothy Smith. We had such a good time praising God in that little church. Every Easter, we would put on a special program. Each child in the Sunshine Band would recite his or her Easter speech and the adult choir would sing and maybe perform a skit. Even my dad, who was not a regular church goer, would write a skit for my brother and me to perform. The BEST part, however, was when each child received an Easter basket. Those are some fond memories I will always cherish.

Although my brother and I enjoyed dressing up and getting our Easter baskets, our mother made sure we knew WHY we were celebrating Easter—–because of JESUS—–our Lord, our Savior, our Redeemer.

I Corinthians 15:3-4 say:

“3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
4 And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the scriptures…”

THE DAY I ACCEPTED JESUS INTO MY HEART
I get emotional whenever I think about the day I accepted Jesus into my heart. I was young, only in the second grade.

I was going to Landmark Christian School (which is now closed) in Glendale, Ohio. Even though I had been in church from the time I was born and had even been baptized, I hadn’t accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior.

I remember the day I got saved, as if it were yesterday. Some older students from another school came to Landmark to perform a play for us. I don’t know if they were high school or college students. I just knew that they were much older.

The play they presented took place on an airplane. Some of the passengers were Christians and some were not. During the flight, those who were Christians witnessed to those who weren’t. Some believed and received Jesus, while the others rejected Him. I especially remember in the play a little girl and her mother. After they both heard about Jesus, the girl accepted Him into her heart, but the mother refused.

Later in the play, the airplane started having problems. I don’t remember if there were mechanical problems or if there was a storm. I just knew at the time that the situation didn’t look good. Everyone on the plane started panicking, and eventually, the plane crashed, killing everyone. At the end of the play, those same passengers were either sent to Heaven or Hell. The little girl in the play went to Heaven, and her mother went to Hell.

Once the play was over, there was an altar call for any of us who wanted to give our lives to Jesus. Immediately, kids began going up to the altar. Some were even crying. I didn’t move right away, not because I didn’t want to, but because, at that age, I had a tendency to be shy. However, I could feel Jesus pulling on my heart. So, I eventually made my way to the altar, knelt down and just cried. Then my second grade teacher Mrs. Pope knelt down beside me, put her arm around me and prayed with me.

It was such a beautiful moment that I will NEVER forget! I knew then that Mrs. Pope loved me because she was crying right along with me. Like Mrs. Pope, that’s the kind of heart we, as christians, should have. We should want to see everyone saved.

Some who may hear that story may accuse the school of trying to scare us into salvation. However, that wasn’t my experience. I don’t believe they were trying to scare us to death! Rather, they wanted us to understand why we need Jesus.

As James 4:14 tells us, tomorrow is not promised to anyone. Every day, people from all walks of life are dying. Fortunately, we, who know Jesus and are saved, don’t have to fear death. We are promised eternal life.

One of the first verses I learned as a child was John 3:16:

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

THE LOVE OF JESUS
When I saw the play, I didn’t just learn that a person will either go to Heaven or Hell when he or she dies, but I learned about the love of Jesus. In fact, it was His love that pulled me to the altar. I felt His love as I knelt down to pray. I felt His love through Mrs. Pope as she prayed with me. I felt His love when I got home that afternoon and told Mom my good news. I have felt His love throughout my life, even during the difficult moments. Moreover, I feel His love now.

I enjoy reading the stories about Jesus in the Bible because of the LOVE He constantly demonstrated—–His love for God the Father and His love for people. When we read about Jesus, we see that everything He did was out of love. It reminds me of the woman who was caught in the very act of adultery in John 8:1-11.

Early one morning Jesus was in the Temple teaching when the scribes and Pharisees brought in a woman who had been caught committing adultery.

These religious leaders questioned if Jesus was going to follow the law of Moses by stoning her to death (Leviticus 20:10).
Needless to say, they weren’t concerned about keeping the law of Moses. They were attempting to trick Jesus into saying something they could use against Him.

So, how did Jesus respond? At first, He ignored them. Then He announced that anyone who had not sinned could throw the first stone. Instead of throwing stones, each of those religious leaders left one by one. When Jesus asked the woman if anyone had condemned her, she said no. Jesus then said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”

THAT is who Jesus is! He’s LOVE. Yes, the woman had sinned. Nevertheless, Jesus gave her another chance. Jesus gave ME another chance. In fact, He has given me more chances than I can count. And He’s ready to give YOU a chance.

YOU CAN ACCEPT JESUS NOW
If you have not accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you can do so right now. Romans 10:9 says:

“If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

All you have to do is pray this prayer:

Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing that I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe that You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so that I could be FREE! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!!!!!

I now welcome you to the family of God!

(“The Kimberly Joy Show: Jesus Is Love”)

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