God loves us unconditionally, justified us in His own blood, and doesn’t remember our sins anymore. Those truths are the unshakable foundation upon which all believers stand and the heart of this podcast series titled, Come As You Are. In this episode, Dr. Siohvaughn Funches reminds us of God’s unconditional love and this unfailing truth; we, as children of God, can always come to our Father just as we are!
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Come As You Are (Part 5)
Thank you so much for joining me here again. In this episode, we’re going to be continuing on and possibly finishing up our series titled, Come As You Are. When we say that, we mean come to God just as you are. The good, the bad, and even the extremely ugly, bring it all to God. He deeply desires for you to do so. We’re going to recap a bit. If you’ve been with me on this journey, we take a moment and we acknowledge God. I thank you, Heavenly Father, for giving us all the opportunity to get at the feet of Jesus and to hear His word. I thank you that you are giving to each and every one of us the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of our understanding are being enlightened all the more, and you’re causing us to know what is the hope of His calling. What are the riches of the glory of His inheritance and the saints and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe according to the working of His mighty power.
I ask you Lord Jesus, to expound on us, on the scriptures to us about the things concerning yourself, open up our understanding that we might comprehend the scriptures. Bless us by causing us to know you more deeply and intimately. I thank you for the impartation of faith that you are giving us as we hear your word. I thank you, Lord, for you declare that faith comes by hearing and hearing the word of God. Under this new covenant, God of your endless grace, your infinite mercy, God, your unfailing love for us, the only thing we have to do to receive is believe.
I thank you, God, for igniting the faith you’ve given us and increasing and multiplying it and even imparting more faith to us. I thank you, God, that as we got and the readers are abiding in you, Jesus, and your words, you’re causing to abide in us that we’re asking what we desire and it is being done for us. I thank you for breakthroughs that are effortless, miracle signs and wonders following us, hunting us down, and overtaking us because we simply believe. In Jesus name, we pray. Amen.
God’s Word And Unconditional Love
I want to recap briefly because we’ve got a couple of things. I think we might be able to finish, but obviously want to go through them and get everything that God has to give us. I want to do what I do sometimes and that’s not summarize the word but read the particular passage verbatim in the scripture. I felt from God to do that with some of the bible verses that God has given us. We’ll see it as we always do in its context, but we also are going to hear that word. God’s word is life, it’s health to all of our flesh. God is His word. As the word is being released, you’ve put yourself in a position by the mercy and grace of God to have His word be released in your life and in your homes, God himself is being released in you, in your life, in the environment that you’re in.
The word of God never comes back void or empty. It must accomplish what God sent it to do. He’s sending His word forth now and what you’re doing is not idle time passing by. You are tapping into the power of God, which is the wisest thing you could possibly do. We began this series with God laying for us the foundation for our entire Christian walk, as sons and daughters of God, and establishing these imperative truths. If we don’t have this as a foundation, everything else built on it is like sinking sand because the gospel is birth out of love, out of God’s grace, his infinite mercy, of who He is and not us or what we’ve done or not done. It’s important for us to understand that in our day-to-day walk with God and even especially important during trying or challenging times.
It is that anchor for our soul and that’s why we’re not shaken. We don’t crumble and fall. God was reminding us that His love for us, His sons and daughters, those who have given their life to Christ. Remember God loved the world. God loves people who haven’t given their life to Christ as well. He’s waiting eagerly with open arms and no punishment or judgment to save them, deliver them, heal them, help them, restore them and show himself as the good father that He is to them. He wants to love on them. If you’re a loving person, you understand. When you’re a loving person, I know that I’m like that, I’m someone who deeply loves. When you’re like that, you need someone to love. What good is love if it’s not used, demonstrated and shown?
Love is an action. Love is always in action. God wants to pour out His love on not only His sons and daughters, but for those He desires to adopt and take us as His own children. For our readers who hasn’t made Jesus their Lord and savior, I encourage them strongly to do. God is waiting. He didn’t do me or any other child of God. There was no punishment. God wasn’t standing there tapping His foot with His arms folded and saying, “I told you so.” That might’ve been how people have done you or maybe how you’ve even done others or yourself you might be hard on, but God is not like that. God is unconditional love. God was explaining to us how He justified us in His own blood and reminding us when we were in sin, Christ died for us.
When we were at our worst, when we were all shaking our fist to God, when we had our middle fingers up to God and disdained Him in all His ways. God did His best. If God will do His best for you sending Jesus to die on the cross in your place, taking your sin upon Himself and the punishment thereof, that’s why Jesus went to hell and died. The wages of sin is death. He did all of that. Taking all of that upon Him and has given us an inheritance, which is He is. That’s why the Bible says that we are heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ. We traded places. Jesus swapped us out and He served our sentence. That was our sentence. We were all supposed to be crucified, not Christ.
He went and was crucified for us and justified and shed His own blood. Without the shedding of blood, the Bible says there is no forgiveness of sins. Jesus shed His blood for us, saving us from having to shed our own, saving us from having to go through the gruesome consequences of sin and saving us from hell from ourselves and the enemy. We can’t blame everything on the devil. Jesus saved me from me. He did that for us when He was at His worst. If God will do that while He’s at His worst, give up His son whom He deeply loves and is well-pleased, the apple of His eye, the love of His life, while we’re at our worst, what will He do now that He has cleansed us?
He himself can’t lie, says, “You’ve given your life to Christ. Jesus is your Lord and savior. Not only have I saved you from yourself and your sins, I also have justified you. That means I have made you not guilty and declared you righteous.” The Bible is full of promises for the righteous. If you want to look more into that, you start with the book of Proverbs. You can read the book of Psalms. It’s amazing all the promises of God that are for the righteous. It’s in other places as well like in the New Testament. The Bible says, “The prayers of the righteous availeth much.” You can lay hold of that claim, believe God for that, that your prayers are not idle time talking to God. It yields results every time.
You can do that as the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus and that scripture is in the New Testament. It helps to have a concordance and point out to you where God lays down all the promises He’s made for the righteousness of Him and that’s who we are. Jesus’ blood has made us righteous before God. We have a certain inheritance, a sheer inheritance because of it, but not only that. God had us to remember that He forgot. God has forgotten our sins. We know that New Covenant in Hebrews. It goes out and establishes that. It’s also in Jeremiah. He prophesied about that covenant, which was to come and we see it laid out twice in the New Testament book of Hebrews, at least two times that I’m aware of and can recall.
Come Boldly To The Throne Of Grace
God was telling us, not only has He forgiven us, not only has He justified us in His own blood, but God doesn’t even remember our sins anymore. That’s great news because you’re not going to punish what you don’t even recall. God told me, “When you come to Him, He says, come boldly to the throne of grace where you can receive mercy and help in your time of need.” God told me, “When you come to me, pause for a minute and remember that I forgot.” The enemy wants to try to make us conscious of what we did, good and evil. He always does that. That was the whole reason for the trick in the garden and the serpent being crafty with Adam and Eve, because he wanted to open that door of knowing the difference between good and evil.
That was the door that God says stay closed. I don’t know about you, but I bear witness that we’d have been better off without that consciousness of good and evil. It can wear you down, something like guilt and condemnation and regret. God has delivered us from that, delivered us from the law. We’re no longer under the law, thank God for that. God was showing us to come boldly. All these things are true. All these things are paid for. Come boldly to His throne just how you are. No consciousness of sin, no worry about what you did and didn’t do and no thinking that, “I better not go to God. He probably will do such and such to me if I do that because remember I did this.”
I’m like, “You don’t need to remember if God doesn’t.” He’s the only just judge. He let us get off the throne and stop judging ourselves. That’s going to lead to stop judging others for certain. God had us look at a couple of examples with Hannah and the lady with the issue of blood. You can go back and read those. I won’t get into the detail of it, but God was line upon line and precept upon precept. Breaking that down and dissecting it and pulling out truths that will help anchor your faith in this area, which is the premise from which everything else springs forth from in your Christian life.
Book Of Mark 1:35-45
We’re going to be looking at the book of Mark and it’s in chapter one and I’m going to be reading from the new King James Version starting at verse 35 and going to verse 45. I want to start a little bit before where I stated. Let’s go to verse 35. It says, “Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, he went out and departed to a solitary place and there he prayed. Simon and those who were with him searched for him. When they found him, they said to him, ‘Everyone is looking for you.’ He said to them, ‘Let us go into the new towns that I may preach there also, because for this purpose I have come forth.’”
He was preaching in their synagogues throughout all Galilee and casting out demons. I felt from God to go back up a little bit and go back up some more verses before diving into this particular part about a leper that Jesus cleansed. Because God was letting me know Jesus was praying to the Father. He was alone. Make no mistake about it. Whatever direction He got, it came from God. It didn’t come from any man. He was praying to God and He came out affirmed in what it is He was called to do and what His next move was. There’s a lesson in that for us, crying out to God for direction. Let’s pray to God, let’s get alone and spend some time with God and seek Him for direction because Jesus came out of that place of taking some time, spending intimate time with God alone with Him.
He came out of that place with direction, reaffirmed in His calling, knowing where to go and what to do next. That’s powerful. We want to be at the right place at the right time. That’s something that this global pandemic taught us. That’s one of the things that God allowed it to happen, turning it for our good. He didn’t send it, but in turning it for our good, we are realizing all the more how important it is, how vital it is to even life. It’s a matter of life and death to be at the right place at the right time. Jesus was at the right place at the right time doing the right thing. The Bible makes no mistake about it for us and letting us know what He was doing prior to that.
Also, God was pointing out to me that the Bible says that if you’ve seen the son, you’ve seen the father. They are one. Jesus, He is God in the flesh. It was amazing to me that not I’ve read this so many times, but God opened it up to me. During preparing this series and right before releasing the word to you all, the Lord showed me that He Himself was not there to do His own will. Jesus was not on earth to do what He wanted to do. Sometimes the enemy makes us feel Jesus is this loving God that saved us from the wrath of God. God is love. God so loved the world that He sent Jesus, but that is a religious wrong belief that the enemy has tried to plant in the world especially in the body of Christ.
Nothing could be further from the truth because God said He so loved the world. It’s not Jesus so loved the world, but God so loved the world that He sent His one and only begotten son. It’s not like He had a litter of children. Even if you’re somebody with a bunch of children or more than one child and one of the other ones unfortunately passes, I don’t want to know if people know pain quite like that. If you’ve overcome something like that, praise be to God for the overcoming resurrection power of Jesus Christ at work, in your heart, your mind, your spiritual emotions and your soul. You are a living, breathing witness, sign, wonder and miracle. There is no question about that.
I’m a loving mother. I get that without having to get that. I know what it feels like, the loss for your children. Maybe not that same way, but death is separated from your loved one. It’s causing separation from your loved one. I certainly have by means of evil, been separated from the ones I love. I know that part of that pain. There’s nothing quite like knowing the love and the power of God that can heal you from something like that because you know for yourself, only God could have done it. You know that. No one needs to tell you that. You don’t need to pass on a pool pit to tell you that. You don’t need anybody to touch and agree with you. You know for yourself that this right here is the power of God, nothing less.
God wants us to know that it was Him who sent Jesus, and not only that, He is Jesus in the flesh. When you see Jesus in the flesh, He’s doing the will of God, not His own. That means that everything Jesus did, God wanted Him to do. Every person He heals, God wanted Him to heal. Jesus was not walking out His own wheel and He didn’t subject Himself to the will of man. He knew better than that He was doing the will of His father. He dotted every I and crossed every T. He completely fulfilled everything God wanted Him to do. He completely fulfilled the law and He did it perfectly. When you see Jesus move, it’s as if someone who owns a place has someone who works for them and they send them out to do things for them.
The person that’s going to do the things for them is an agent of the actual person. They don’t have any more authority than what the owner gave them and they don’t have any less authority than what they gave them. They only give them power to do what it is they want them to do. Anything outside of that is a transgression. It’s a wrong. People sue people all the time for stuff like that. Know that when you’re reading through your Bible, it’s not the love of Jesus and Jesus loves us. God didn’t force Him to the cross. He willingly gave up His life. He loves us as much as God does, but remember that God the Father, because the enemy tries to make people afraid of Him and not afraid of Jesus, but they’re one. Jesus went to do the will of the Father. Every time you read your Bible, to be conscious and aware of the fact that when Jesus is healing, when He’s raising the dead, when He’s wiping away tears, a mother’s son lay in a coffin and He’s telling her not to cry, that’s God.
Story Of The Leper
The Bible says Jesus didn’t even say anything unless God gave Him the words to say. All of it is God. When they say, “Are you willing, Lord?” He says, “I am willing.” That’s God’s voice in Earth. Jesus was God’s voice in Earth. They’re one. Know that your Father in heaven loves you. Him and Jesus are one. You can see the Father, His heart and His hand for you, His power, when you see the life of Jesus. We’ll get to the part about the leper, but I felt to share that with you because God shared it with me and He did it not after I finished releasing the word to you, but He did it prior. I know He wanted you to have that. That too shows the wonder of His love for us.
It says, “Now a leper came to Him, imploring Him, kneeling down to Him and saying to Him, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.” Jesus moved with compassion, stretched out His hand and touched Him, and said to Him, “I am willing. Be cleansed.” As soon as He had spoken, immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed. He strictly warned him, “See that you say nothing to anyone but go your way, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing, those things which Moses commanded as a testimony to them,” and sent him away at once. However, he went out and began to proclaim it freely and spread the matter so that Jesus could no longer even openly enter the city but was outside in deserted places.
They came to Him from every direction. I love that Jesus told him to go to the priest and offer for yourself that cleansing those things, which Moses commanded as a testimony to them because it lets us know this leper came in faith to Jesus, in faith of His goodness, His love and His grace. He came just as he was. Leprosy, even in the Bible represents sin itself. We don’t have to wait until we are feeling we have it all to give or thinking our lives are not as bad or saying, “I’m going to go to church when I quit smoking. I’m going to go to church when I stopped partying.” No. When they say go to church, they mean go to God. God is everywhere. You can talk to Him anywhere, that’s first.
God loves you unconditionally so He wants you to come now. Right now is the time for you, now is the time for you to be blessed. Now is the time for you to get to know God is not against you, but He’s for you with everything in Him. It’s time for you to live this blessed life. It’s time for God to bring heaven to the earth for you and your family like He wants to do. It’s time for you to know God for yourself and sin will not separate you from God. God has taken care of that at the cross. I encourage you once again to do that and people who have done it, I encourage you to make it your lifestyle and keep going to God.
I’m encouraging myself. I better stay at the feet of Jesus. I love how He told him to go to the priest. He did that because having leprosy and being out in public was totally against the law of God. This leper came to God just as he was. He came to Him in the midst of full-blown sin. We find this law that he was breaking in Leviticus. Even though he came to Jesus in the middle of his sin, full of leprosy, which represents sin itself, what did he get from Jesus? That was the man’s hesitation, “I know you’re able to help me, but are you willing?” Right now, he had no business out here in public. “Are you going to strike me down or are you going to cleanse the leprosy?”
He had enough faith. He probably had heard so many people, the lady with the issue of blood, many different things. Word was spreading everywhere about Jesus and what He was doing and how He was being merciful to people. He’s blessing, the Gentile Samaritans are getting healed and you don’t even have to be Jewish coming to find out. They’re hearing about the grace of God. I’m almost certain this leper heard about the goodness, the grace, and the love of God and how it’s unconditional. That’s why even full of sin, not somebody thinks the leper is wrong or the leper has judged himself. It’s written that he did in the wrong, but he came anyway as he was.
The leper took this advice from God, “Come as you are.” We see what happened, immediately his leprosy got cleansed. It’s not that you need to dot every I and cross every T. That’s not a condition for getting blessed by God coming to Him. These people had to come to Him in the midst of their sin. Not because they believed he was a judge or a lawgiver. That would make you want to run. Judges usually enforced their laws and God didn’t enforce it. He enforced it on Christ instead of us, because that’s how He loves us.
This man must’ve believed in the goodness of God. His belief in the love and goodness of God got his prayer answered as soon as he finished uttering the words out of his mouth. The gospel and receiving from God is not complicated. Let’s go to Leviticus 13. I want to read a little bit of this law, so you’ll know for yourself that I’m not making this up. This leper was like what we call in Chicago, did in the wrong. “The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron saying, ‘When a man has on the skin of his body a swelling, a scab or a bright spot, and it becomes on the skin of his body like a leprous sore, then he shall be brought to Aaron, the priest or to one of his sons, the priest. The priest shall examine the sore on the skin of the body. If the hair on the sore has turned white and the sore appears to be deeper than the skin of his body, it is a leprous sore, then the priest shall examine him and pronounce him unclean,’ which is why the leper asked to be cleansed.”
I won’t even read all the detail of it. You can go through it when you have time, but if you go down a bit, a few verses, because it’s anything that can make you unclean at that point is in there. This is also where you find out about leprosy being a bad thing and you even pronounced unclean. The Bible said that when somebody had leprosy under the law, they had to be isolated completely. They were not allowed to be in public and amongst a crowd of people. We know wherever Jesus went, there was a crowd. If not, it was at least Jesus and His disciples. Lepers were not allowed to be around anyone.
Not only that he was in public, but on top of that, they weren’t even allowed to be around their family. That will show the seriousness of it. A family member, a husband or wife, you would think, “Let them decide if they want to die with their spouse.” No, all the way cast out, out of the camp, away from the family, away from anyone. Leprosy was extremely contagious by the way, in case someone thinks, “God, that was a bit harsh.” It would have killed everyone probably. God was containing the contagion in a sense, but it was a sin to do that, to be out in public like that.
We see that this leper was, and now did Jesus give him a lesson on the law. He didn’t. He healed this man. He blessed this man. If that doesn’t bring it home enough for you, that you can come to God as you are, you can go to the book of Luke in chapter 17 and start with verse 11 and go through 19 with me. I’m going to be reading out of the New King James version. It says, “Now it happened as he went to Jerusalem.” When you get this, you’ll see why I’m saying like if that wasn’t enough, your face is going to be solidified. What happened is He went to Jerusalem that He passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee. As He entered a certain village, there met Him ten men who were leprous in the village.
All of them out. They’re coming out of their cage they were hiding in. They stood a far off and they lifted up their voices and sayeth, “Jesus, master have mercy on us.” When He saw them, He said to them, “Go show yourself to the priest.” It was that as they went, they were cleansed. The Lord was showing us and telling them, “Go yourself to the priests.” I believe that Jesus was reminding not only letting the leper know, He was letting us know because the Bible says that Jesus did so many miracles that all the books in the world couldn’t contain them. The ones that the Holy Spirit shows to pen, to write down through people, they’re vital for us to study, get to know God through, to abide in and let abide in us, to meditate on and even memorize things.
It is the power of God being released in our life and us plugging into it. I wanted to make this point because God did and the reason why He told them even to go to those priests, those priests would even know as well. These Pharisees and if you’ve read gospels, the synoptic ones and the other one, you wouldn’t know for yourself that the religious leaders were livid. They were angry with Jesus, angry at the unconditional love of God, angry at the grace of God. Truth be told if it wasn’t for the love of God being unconditional and the grace and mercy of God, they would have went to hell too. That’s what they didn’t get.
Thank God for not allowing what people think we deserve to determine His grace and His love for us, even ourselves. When we’ve been operating in self-condemnation. He has looked over that, passed over that. He let the blood of Jesus cover that. He’s blessed us with what we don’t deserve. I thank God for who He is. I thank Him that He doesn’t change. On a good day, He’s unconditional love and on our bad day, on our worst day, He still remains the same. He’s unconditional love. That’s the best news I could give you. I don’t know if I can give you better news than that. I love that Jesus says, “Go show this priest that.” We get to see it as well. It’s a reminder that there was a law instituted.
These lepers were to be examined by the priest and determined unclean. If they were to start clearing up and be examined by the priest again and pronounced clean, they could go back into the population with people. Other than that, they lived the life of solitary confinement. I love how Jesus reminds us of that part because He’s demonstrating and He’s letting us know He’s the law maker. He’s the law giver. He knows the law. This is not something where like, “Maybe God blessed me. Maybe He wasn’t thinking or maybe He was so busy because other people were asking Him stuff. Maybe it was crowded that if He was here, take it and go.” No. He’s well aware of what He’s doing. He’s well aware of the law. He wrote it, but He blessed him anyhow. He blessed these other ten lepers anyhow.
There are countless examples in the Bible of that. God did that for them and what He did for them, He’s willing and able to do for you and I. God is not a respecter of persons. He doesn’t show favoritism to man in that regard. Whatever you believe God for, it’s yours. I encourage you to keep on reading. Please continue to stay with me on this journey only because I know that God is giving me the wisdom and the information before I give it to you. Otherwise I would tell you to run, but because I know God, I’m confident in it and I don’t dare take for granted your time, your life, your love.
Thank you all for your comments and your prayers and for continuing on with me on this journey. That’s all I have for you. May God continue to bless and keep us and make His face shine upon us, surround us as a shield with His own presence. Cover us with the blood of Jesus, sprayed his mantle over us, increase His favor and peace in our life even through the knowledge of Him. Bless us to remember only one thing is needful and may we be rooted and grounded in His rest. May we receive tangible results in our life, even greater than what He did in His earthly ministry. In Jesus’ name, I pray. I love you.
- Hannah – Previous episode
- Lady with the issue of blood – Previous episode
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