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Count Your Blessings

Graham Thomason

Part 1

PREFACE

In this booklet we propose to count only those blessings that are specifically in Christ, because then we are all on the same footing, whatever your outward condition may be. It is assumed that the reader is a believer in Jesus Christ, as He is revealed in the Old and New Testament Scriptures, which we believe are the word of God. If by any chance you are not a believer, then it is recommended that you ponder on the Scriptures quoted here, and see whether they speak to your heart.

Many of the spiritual blessings described have a physical counterpart in the Old Testament. We illustrate the parallelism in our coverage of examples of such Old Testament passages.

The FarAboveAll (FAA) translation has been quoted throughout. Scripture is printed bold.

Blessing 1. AGE-ABIDING LIFE

John 3:16 offers age-abiding life — life which is not affected by the coming and going of the ages, so eternal.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten son, so that everyone who believes in him should not be lost, but have age-abiding life. [John 3:16]

To the interested non-believer, who maybe would like to believe in the Son of God, we would suggest reading all of John's Gospel, and see whether you can believe the eight signs recorded there, because the signs were written

so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the son of God, and that by believing, you may have life through his name. [John 20:31]

For reference, here is where the eight signs can be found in John's Gospel:

John 2:1-11,   John 4:46-54,   John 5:1-47,
John 6:1-14,   John 6:15-21,   John 9:1-41,
John 11:1-45,   John 21:1-14.

A problem everybody has, but which few recognize or take seriously early on in life, is that he or she is going to die. We all either meet with an untimely death, which is tragic, or we die of `old age', which means that our bodies start functioning less and less efficiently until some critical part fails. Death. Isn't this a very, very, very serious problem? Isn't it heart-breaking when someone we love dies? Yet many people dismiss the problem as a natural necessity, or hope for a solution in the future from science, while still others expect a continuation of life in some occult form. But these are opinions, hopes and expectations that are based on human reasoning or guesswork. Moreover, these reasonings rarely if ever address the question of why it is we live in a universe where death reigns - we will see the Bible's answer to this question later (Nr. 3). When the author first became a Christian and read John's Gospel, it was as if a solution was presented to a problem that he only dimly realized he had. He had other problems on my mind. But he was given eternal life, hardly being aware it was a solution to an infinitely more serious problem than the ones with which he was preoccupied. And by considering the solution, eternal life, we realize that God knows our problems much better than we do, and what a very, very, very precious gift He has given us. Some-one has said, “When the chips are down, people will give everything they have to save their life.” And here is God's gift, free of charge, worth far more than life on this earth, because unlike our present earthly life in an imperfect body, going through dangerous moments and boring moments, our eternal life will be in a glorious body (Phil 3:21), in an environment of perfect love and righteousness, as we shall see, and it will not come to an end.

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