I was listening to one of my favorite preachers by the name of John Macarthur who hates Pentecostals to death, even though I am Pentecostal. He was teaching on his favorite doctrine which teaches that the bible is the only word of God we have or need. As he went on making fun of Pentecostals and Charismatics I realized that he had never heard the voice of the Lord Jesus. So in essence to this man and his followers Jesus is dead or went on a hike and never came back. He cannot speak and he has no ideas outside of the bible. Now I am a bible lover and believe every word of it. So much in fact that if the bible said that there was a pizza hut in any of its books I would believe it.
But the Lord Jesus Christ is not dead, he is alive, that is what Christianity is all about. He is the only one to have risen from the dead. We know we will also rise because he is our example of the resurrection from the dead. He is alive, he speaks, he eats, he sits, he gets emotional, and he likes to mingle with his friends. To truly believe in Jesus is to know him and if you know him you know his habits, his likes and dislikes. To know him is to love him and if you love him you will mingle with him and he with you.
For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, 8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born. NIV
After his suffering, he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God.
I have had the privilege of seeing the Lord Jesus on three separate occasions. Once by myself and twice while praying with friends. One time as I was praying with my friends Caster Brown and Mauricio Mendoza the Lord Jesus came and sat with us at the table. It sounds easy but it was not because all we did was cry and the other two tried to hide from the Lord as he sat down to speak with us. It was only for a few minutes but it seemed a life time. All I can remember is asking the dumbest questions and crying some more.
On another occasion while I was with a young man from Hilton Head North Carolina that had been shot and left paralyzed, the Lord stood next to us and spoke these words. "You see this young man; I really do love him very much and hate to see him like this." The young man was sitting in a wheel chair and when the Lord touched him he fell out for over twenty minutes. I would love to say that he was healed but it didn't' happen. He had made to many vows to the Lord in the past and had broken them all. That was one of the reason he was in a wheel chair.
The first time I saw Jesus I was in a hospital room recovering from a mild stroke. At around 2 in the morning I awoke to the presence of the Lord. I knew he was there but I could not see him so I asked him to allow me to see him and he appeared dressed in white silk and glowing as only God could. He told me not to look at his face and I didn't, a minute later he was gone and I was left there wondering. I have never picked the spots for his appearances but I have been eager to see him and have always prayed for this to happen.
Tens of Thousands of people have seen Jesus after his burial and resurrection that's why I find it strange that there is so much confusion and unbelieve even among Christian believers. Kenneth Hagan who is one of the most honest and sincere human beings to have lived on planet earth has a book about speaking with Jesus for days at a time called, I Believe in Visions. He saw no problem with speaking to a living Lord and having fellowship with him and learning with him.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
To those who have made the bible an idol what good is the book if there is no living person behind it? Can you have fellowship with a book, or can you take a book to dinner, Can a book love you and hold you as only Jesus can? What would be the difference between the pagan religions who also have a book but no person behind the book and you? There is no difference because you don't know a living God.
"Men of Galilee," they said, "why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven."
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