Rev. George R. Dillahunty
685 Grant Avenue
Virginia Beach, Virginia 23452-3047

December 10, 2010

Text: 1 Peter 2:25 (King James Version)

"For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls."

Topic: Starting Over Again!

Almighty God is a God of second chances - He has made provision for those of us who have found it difficult to remain steadfast in our commitment to serve Him - to come back to Him - to start over again! We need to transfer our tickets on the "Railroad of Life" from the "Doomed Line" to the "Glory Line!"

In Deuteronomy 30:7-8 TEV), we are told: "He will turn all these curses against your enemies, who hated you and oppressed you, (v. 8) and you will again obey Him and keep all His Commands that I am giving you today." So, we see that Almighty God anticipates that when we fail Him, we will repent and return unto Him - He proclaims that to be true!

In 2 Chronicles 6:38-39 (TEV); we are told: "If in that land they truly and sincerely repent and pray to You as they face toward this land which You gave to our ancestors, this city which You have chosen, and this Temple which I have built for You, (v. 39) then listen to their prayers. In Your home in Heaven hear them and be merciful to them and forgive all the sins of Your people."

In Proverbs 23:26 (TEV), we are told: "Pay close attention, son, and let my life be your example." Jesus, the Christ, is our example and we must strive to be Christ-like in our lives! We will never totally achieve that in this life - it will only happen when we receive our glorified bodies and become like Him! The difference between sinners and Christians is that when a Christian falls down, he or she gets back up!

In Ecclesiastes 12:7 (TEV), we are told: "Our bodies will return to the dust of the earth,and the breath of life will go back to God, Who gave it to us."

In Malachi 3:7 (TEV), we are told: "You, like your ancestors before you, have turned away from My Laws and you have not kept them. Turn back to Me, and I will turn to you. But you ask, íWhat must we do to turn back to you?í"

The beloved Disciple/Apostle John, in 1 John 1:9 (KJV), gives us the answer: "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

The songwriter, John Morrison, in his song entitled, "To Us A Child Of Hope Is Born," says things well:

***"To us a Child of Hope is born,
***To us a Son is givín;
***Him shall the tribes of earth obey,
***Him, all the hosts of Heavín.

***His Name shall be the Prince of Peace,
***Forever more adored;
***The Wonderful, the Counsellor,
***The great and mighty Lord.

***His Powír, increasing, still shall spread,
***His reign no end shall know;
***Justice shall guard His Throne above
***And peace abound below."

What has happened in our past is behind us; however, our lives can be improved upon by the grace of Almighty God! We all have had