I don’t know what set this thought off last night. But I was thinking about how wrong the Prosperity Doctrine was.
Normally it doesn’t affect me as a Christian, because I have only been to one church were it had been preached in Las Vegas.
Las Vegas? Thank God! LOL
And the way it had been presented was in an actual “front-of-church” book display. (The invited speaker claimed to be a prophet, but all he had to say was not prophetic in the least).
And then it seemed that the Lord just opened my eyes. He made me realize that it was not the fault of the Prosperity teachers. We often look at people like Benny Hinn, Joel Olsteen, T.D Jakes, etc…and instantly we know something is up. Even the non-religious
will often look at the TV Evangelists and call their bluff.
While it’s true that they are doing wrong, it’s also not their fault at all that they are leading the lost sheep to the wide open pit.
It’s the fault of the “Christian” who doesn’t read their Bible. It’s the fault of the Christian who doesn’t know the suffering of Jesus, or even the suffering of the children of Egypt under Pharoah’s hand. A hand that is part of the body of every prosperity teacher.
We are all in need at times, some of us have known it our entire lives. And we naturally know that the “name it and claim it” game is just that…a game, a fantasy. Yes, it’s a gross misrepresentation of the gospel.
But EVERYBODY has heard of Jesus, and they know His true gospel. They know it’s not a “name it and claim it gospel”.
Even Jesus said “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.Â Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.”
Even Jesus told the lame “Get up up, take your bed and walk.” He made the blind to see, and the deaf to hear, and the mute to talk!”
Many of us live in a world where we see that life isn’t about $200,000 cars. It’s not about $100,000,000. The reality is that most of us are living the life of a struggling artist. No fame, no fortune…living day to day,Â relying on God to pull us through.
And we know that God always delivers! Definitely not through some Prosperity doctrine preacher, wearing $1,000 dollar suits and driving Mercedez Benz. I mean, they preachÂ only for their own storehouses (Remember the manna? How it went to rot overnight?)
But God delivers His mercies through the able-to-do Christians just like you and me!
We don’t need the hope for riches! We are able to do anything with what God provides. And that includes helping the poor as we can…
Instead of $100, which would no doubt, be nice, we hope we have at least $10 to be able to feed ourselves, or our families for one day.
The one thing to understand, which is probably already understood, is that we have more important needs than to give our little money to a man or woman who already has money enough to give to us!
To sum it all up, if you see a fellow preacher, preaching how God will bless you, and he looks like this fellow:
Then please run away from him, he’s just baaaad news!
Christians need to be aware that four walls don’t necessarily define a church…unless those four walls are built out of fleshy hearts, and can open up a hole where others may fit in. It’s not about programs, and available resources. It’s about people. It’s not about leadership issues. Jesus is the one that’s in charge after all…or rather He should be.
I know there are well meaning Pastors out there…Sheppards Â who watch their sheep closely. You are few in number. But I also know there are hundreds…millions…thousands…who are without a (true) Sheppard. They cling to their backpacks, their shopping carts…they have no place to go.
It’s not the Pastors job to reel them in…it’s not your job to provide for them.
It’s the job of your church..your community, your congregation.
The ideal church would be a body of believers that is set on fire by the Holy Spirit. We all say we are Holy Spirit filled Christians. But the sad fact is that there are few Holy Spirit filled Christians Â that are beacons to the ships out in that vast ocean of lost ships.
We wonder about the Bermuda Triangle. About the many lost ships and planes out there.Â We never stop to consider that either we are in the Bermuda Triangle, or that we see, on a daily basis, people on the edge of that Triangle…heading into it.
The poor in spirit, the hungry, the destitute, the hopeless. They are all heading into it. Yet the Christians who have everything, are stuck, with their butts glued to the pews. Not aware of anything going on outside.
Are we listening, intently, to the false prophets who have nothing to say? Are we comfortable where we are at? Our brothers out in the highways and byways are standing there with a cardboard…are we passing them by on a daily basis without a thought?
What’s going on in God’s storehouses?
As a Christian I am not proud of my past sins. Though I have been forgiven and washed clean, I still tend to carry the shame of all of it like a knapsack strapped to my back. I realize that it’s not necessary to do so. I continue to strive to leave my heavy burden at the foot of the cross.
But as any addict will tell you, that’s not an easy thing to do. There are time when my previous sins come back and haunt me. Sometimes they actually do beckon me to return to them. I don’t know if any other Christians will agree with me. But if you sin a sin long enough, it will definitely and permanently leave its mark on you.
Because of my past willing sins my mind has been seared by the images of those sins. I find that if I don’t keep my mind focused on doing the Lord’s work, meditating on His Word, and occupying my mind and my hands with different things . I tend to go back over those images in my mind. I find my armor actually losing its strength.
It used to be a tough walk. I’d run into so many boulders and obstacles. And there were times I’d slip and fall. At one very brief moment that only lasted for a couple of days, I’d be lying there in a fallen state. Not actually willingly sinning, but walking a tightrope nonetheless.
The thing that helped me overcome was the fact that I wanted to love Jesus more than I wanted my willing sin. I thought about Jesus’ words to Peter: “Satan has asked my permission to shift you…” I also thought about how much like Judas I could end up to be.
The thought of being cast into hell frightens me. The words that Jesus spoke to those who did everything right is still ringing in my ears “Depart from me you worker of iniquity.” I don’t ever want to hear those words coming from Him towards me. Yet I live with the realization that I just might.
Even though I love God, and try my best to please Him in every way…I know I still fall short.
Every single day.
I think every Christian does.
Will my short falls land me in a ever-lasting hell?
Maybe that’s being fearful. Maybe that’s being ridiculous. Especially because I know that God does love me. God loves everyone and He died to show His love for all.
But to those in willing sins, He still calls out to them (in a rather loving, but sternÂ voice):
REPENT! For the kingdom of God is at hand!
No matter how harsh the word of God is at times…I thank God every day for it. It’s true that sometimes we don’t like what it says. We try to block it out, we try and do it our way.Â But God is full of the strength of Samson, the wisdom of Solomon, and the heart of Moses, and the courage of the Baptist. And those are the same qualities that God looks for in all of us.
Yes, even through our weaknesses and struggles. Even in our time of great need. God still looks for the roaring lion in us all. Our sins weaken us. That’s very true. But our sins are not our end. We sin, we repent, we get back on that long narrow path.
Because that wide road to destruction is wide, but short.
God wants us to shine our best for Him in our darkest hour. 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.
Since I appear to be running empty on blog posts these days I’ve decided to start a new series, or feature on my blog. On Sundays I will post an article that I’ve read elsewhere: either from an email, book I’ve been reading, or elsewhere on the internet.
The following is a very interesting one. Perhaps even worthy of comment.
(Charles P. Schmitt/D. Min., D. TH.) The apostle Paul tells the Thessalonians of the great reunion of all believers when together they meet Christ as He descends from heaven: â€śThe dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air; and so shall we ever be with the Lordâ€ť (1 Thess. 4:16-17). This is our blessed hopeâ€”the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and the rapture of the church to meet Him!
This is our blessed hopeâ€”the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and the rapture of the church to meet Him!
Many evangelicals, for reasons that we will examine, believe that seven years before the glorious return of our Lord Jesus Christ, faithful Christians will be raptured, caught up to heaven. This understanding is known as the “pretribulation rapture.” A major concern about the pre-tribulation rapture is that, historically, it found its way into the evangelical mainstream only in the mid-1800s.
Millions of godly believers for almost 1,800 years did not believe in a pretribulation rapture. Among these were the reformers of the 1500s and the revivalists of the 1600s-1700s. George Mueller, who lived in the mid-1800s, is reported to have stated, “If you can show me a trumpet after the last (1 Cor. 15:52) and a resurrection before the first (Rev. 20:4-5), then I can believe this new doctrine.”
As far as the post-apostolic church fathers go, they apparently did not believe in a pretribulation rapture either. They write: “Then shall the race of men come into the fire of proving trial and many be made to stumble and fall. But those who remain established in their faith shall be saved under the very curse” (Didache; 16:5). “Happy ye who endure the great tribulation that is coming on …” (Hermas; chapter II, Vision II).
Irenaeus, disciple of Polycarp, who was a disciple of John the Beloved, comments in his Against Heresies (5.25.3) concerning the reign of the Antichrist, that “this tyranny shall last, during which the saints shall be put to flight. … .” And Augustine, commenting on Daniel 7:21, states, “He who reads this passage even half asleep cannot fail to see that the kingdom of Antichrist shall fiercely, though for a short time, assail the church.”
Gerhard Pfandi, Ph.D., associate director of the Biblical Research Institute, in an excellent article titled “The Raptureâ€”Why It Cannot Occur Before the Second Coming,” traces the roots of the pretribulation rapture teaching:
John Nelson (J.N.) Darby (1800-1882) is regarded as the father of dispensationalism. … Darby asserted that Christ’s coming would occur in two stages. The first was an invisible “secret rapture” of believers, which would end the great “parenthesis,” or church age, which began when the Jews rejected Christ. Following the rapture, the Old Testament prophecies concerning Israel would be literally fulfilled, leading to the great tribulation, which would end with the Second Coming of Christ in glory. The doctrine of the pretribulation rapture was disseminated around the world, primarily through J.N. Darby and men of God such as Arno Gabelein, Harry Ironside, James Gray and C. I. Scofield …” (Adapted from Ministry, September 2001).
What Did Our Lord Jesus Teach?
Jesus’ final teaching on His Second Coming, given on the Mount of Olives, and recorded in Matthew 24 and 25, is extremely clear. In Matthew 24, there is no Second Coming and no rapture until “after the tribulation of those days … [for] then shall appear the sign of the Son of Man in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” (Matt. 24:29-31).
Mark 13 and Luke 21 teach the same, but Luke, in 21:36, gives one additional charge: “Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape [translated as “pass safely through,” in the Living Bible margin and in the N.E.B., and translated by J.B. Phillips as “come safely through”] all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.” Our Lord sought to prepare His disciples for His coming, “after the tribulation of those days,” and how not to be caught unawares, that they might “come safely through” all these things to stand before Him.
What Were the Apostles’ Understandings?
Paul, in 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, places the rapture of the church “at the last trumpet,” as does John in Revelation 11:15-18: “The seventh angel sounded his trumpet [the last one], and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ and He will reign forever and ever … The time has come for judging the dead, and for rewarding Your servants the prophets and your saints and those who reverence Your Name, both small and great … .”
Obviously, all of this takes place at the rapture at the end of the tribulation period, after the blowing of the seven trumpets of judgment. A study of Revelation reveals that the seven seals and the seven trumpets and the seven bowls run concurrently and end in the Second Coming of Jesus. Concurrent visions are not new to the prophetic Scriptures. The visions of Daniel run concurrently, each ending in the Second Coming, as well.
In Revelation 3:10, Jesus had already promised: “I will keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come on the whole world to test those who live on the earth.” (The Greek preposition used here, according to the NIV and Living Bible footnotes, can also mean “keep you through the hour of trial.”
In Revelation 20:4-6, the first resurrection is clearly described. And we need to remember, as George Mueller pointed out, that there cannot be a resurrection seven years before the first resurrection, or the first resurrection would not be the first. In this first resurrection are found “those who had been beheaded because of their testimony … for they had not worshipped the beast [the Antichrist] or his image … .” So the rapture and the first resurrection apparently are at the end of the great tribulation, after the reign of the Antichrist and not seven years before!
From the book of Revelation, an argument for a pretribulation rapture has been advanced by some, because the word “church” per se is not used by John between chapters 4 and 21; their reasoning being that the church is not present in the Earth during these chapters. The facts are that chapters 4 through 21 are highly symbolic chapters, abounding in figures of speech for both Jesus and His church, and that the church does appear in the symbolism of these chapters as the “saints,” the “kingdom of priests,” the “great multitude,” the “candlesticks,” the “firstfruits,” God’s “people,” the “bride,” the “armies of heaven,” the “new Jerusalem” and so on, even as Jesus Himself appears with numerous symbolic names alsoâ€”the Lamb, the Lion, the Man-child, the Word of God and so on. The suggestion that the “saints” of Revelation 4-21 are the Jews, rather than the many-membered, Jewish-Gentile Body of Christ violates the revelation of God’s “one new man” (Eph. 2:15) and undercuts Paul’s understanding of Israel’s re-inclusion into that “one new man” in these last days.
Paul, in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-8, also clearly taught that the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and the rapture (the gathering, or “mustering,” literally) of the saints to Jesus cannot take place until the great apostasy has first happened and the man of sin (the Antichrist) is first revealed (verse 3). Paul also taught that the church will get “relief” from persecution and tribulation only “when [and not seven years before] the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with His powerful angels to punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel …” (2 Thess. 1:6-8).
For part two of this series, tune in Wednesday.
Have you ever thought about heaven? Maybe a little, or a lot?
Truthfully I didn’t until a couple of years ago. At the time I was consumed by thoughts about death. What was it like in the “ever after”?
I thought about how the Television and even movies portrayed the life after death and how silly it was.
I thought of people with wings and halos…and white robes. And Peter standing at the door of heaven. I thought about how Satan dresses in a red 3-piece suit and how comfortably red hell is.
But the truth is that even before then…deep down, I knew it wasn’t about that at all.
It would have been nice though.
But I was taken away by all the Hollywoodism about heaven and hell.
In fact, I still fantasize about what heaven might actually be like. But my fantasies..actually probably my own selfish desires is that heaven is like I imagine it. Of course Â I see Jesus and God waiting for me there. I see that large banqueting table, and I see all the families, Â relatives and friends I have lost over the years.
Then a sudden fear overtakes me.
A fear that I might not make it to heaven.
A fear that I’ll find myself in a very cold, darkness.
As a Christian I’ve been told that I’m saved by the blood of Jesus, and I am reassured of a heavenly reward. But as a frail human, I am convinced that I am not worth anything because of all the sin I have committed over the many years.
I know that Jesus loves me, He died for me. And I also know that there is truly no repayment required, even necessary. I could never repay the Lord for what He’s done for me.
I mean, how do you really repay someone for saving your life? The only way I know how is paying it forward. But I will humbly admit that my conduct as a Christian will often leave me with the need for a constant savior. One who time and time again needs to come down off (or jump back on) the cross and save me again and again.
Some Christians would shout out to me “Be about the Father’s business!” But I would just stare at them proclaiming “Jesus cried “IT IS FINISHED!”
There are so many things that Jesus did during His time on earth. He preached, He healed, He set the captives free.
And He told us that all it takes to be heaven bound….is to simply believe!
Having faith, is essential to the life of a Christian. Without it, we cannot move mountains, or anything else for that matter.Â I’ve heard a saying that fear brings out the strength in us. But fear can be thought of as a double edge sword…it either will paralyze us, or cause us to move.
The Father’s love for us is perfect. Yet it’s a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living Lord.
What are we afraid of? We’ve got hell behind us and heaven just ahead….
LET’S START RUNNING!!!!
In the day-to-day experiences of life, we have opportunities to learn to be like Jesus, to choose to be patient, to be considerate, to help others, to pray. On the job and in our homes, Jesus has something to say about what we do.
What about the trials and difficulties of life? We wish theyâ€™d go away, or even lessen, get turned down an notch. But Jesus never promised that. Instead, he promised us problems: “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). “No servant is greater than his master. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also” (John 15:20).
God uses our circumstancesÂ as opportunities for us to learn. Even Jesus had his fair share, or perhaps he had even more!Â “Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered” (Hebrews 5:8). If even Jesus had to learn through suffering, we can expect it to be part of ourÂ lives, too.
We will experience problems in life whether or not we follow Jesus. Don’t believe for one second that by giving up on Jesus, or even not believing in him at all, that you will escape your problems. That’s a straight lie from the enemy. You see, Jesus promised that he would never leave us nor forsake us. And the enemy knows this. Once you have Jesus on your side, it’s not so easy to get rid of him. The same goes for the enemy as well. Believe it! The enemy will only turn up the heat when he knows Jesus has you! As a straight up Christian walking, crawling, or even perhaps running down that narrow path, that path will have thorns…a LOT of thorns, that will engage you, scratch you, even bite you. Those thorns will leave their eternal mark on you.
But you shouldn’t worry about those thorns..because they are the mark of the true believer! Just remember, if you are not counted worthy of the Kingdom of heaven, then you will not have to face those thorns in the first place!
The problems for the true believer come when they are not being ripped to pieces by the thorns. That just means they are no longer on the narrow path. Just because you have the armor of God on doesn’t mean you won’t experience bumps, bruises, burns, or even soreness during your trials. The only thing that armor is supposed to do is to prevent the enemies darts, or steel tipped arrows from piercing your hide. But remember, just like David, you have to prove your armor. That means putting it on every single day. And sometimes, when God sees fit, He will adjust the armor..making it stronger, heavier. That means that you have to work out your spiritual armor every day, at every battle! Yes! There will be times when your armor will fail you! It’s supposed to fail you.. but it will keep you safe! When it does fail you, simply put on another piece.Â But remember…it’s not the enemy that is in control of the heat! God himself will turn up the fire!
You think you’ve had enough? No! I don’t think so! I think it’s up to God to say when you’ve had enough! Just like the children of Israel, your outcry that it’s enough will only prolong your experience…so get used to it. Harden up! Stand your ground and don’t let up! Because you know the fire never will!!!!
Just remember whenÂ Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were thrown into the fire…there was another man in there with them! And what happened to them? NOTHING! They came out of the fire knowing that when they went in their God would protect them!
Something else is to be learned from the account ofÂ Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. Something we should never forget! And it’s so simple, that we DO forget! What is it that we are overlooking? What is it that we fail to see when we are in the fire??
Get ready ya’ll!!!!
WE ARE NEVER ALONE!
If you believe that you are God’s…that He holds you in the palm of your hands…then you need to realize that God is pretty big! And though it seems like it…you’re not the only one in the fire. There are countless of other Christians who are in there with you! YES! There are Christians out there who are standing up for Righteousness, Holiness, and Truth! You may not have found them, but you know they’re out there. You see their faces every day! His people fill His world!
They are in the fire with you…however, they could either have been there longer than you, or even come after you!
THERE IS A FOURTH MAN IN THE FIRE! And He represents all those who have gone in before you. He also represents those that will follow you!
Again, the point that I am trying to make is that YOU ARE NOT ALONE! It’s so easy to learn from the Bible about the many trials of those who chose to follow God! But what have youÂ learned?Â YOU ARE NOT ALONE! There are people out there who are physically out there proclaiming God’s word! Living for Him! There are saints all over the world who are beaten, persecuted, brought down, taken to court, humiliated, tortured, killed! THEYÂ ARE NOT ALONE!
There are governments all over the world with no love for the followers of Christ! Some of them actively have eyes and ears that search out and expose Christians…they come to theirÂ house, and take them and their family away…to separate places perhaps..and they torture them! They tell the head of the familyÂ that they will not only let themÂ go, but they will also set theirÂ family free! On one condition! They must renounce Christ!
BUT THERE IS A FOURTH MAN IN THE FIRE!
Our choice is not whether to be in the fire or not! As Christians, we are ALL in the fire together! But yet we all will not behave the same way at first! Some of us will melt away, only to be refined and hardened later. It’s up to the older generation to teach the younger generation to hold fast! An eagle that has been in battle does not look pretty. It may lack an eye, part of it’s skull perhaps…yes, it will definitely have battle scars. But it sits…perched on the highest pint of elevation possible! And when it ready…it leaps off into the air…only to soar higher…higher…higher still!
Are we as bold as an eagle? Do we long to soar? Well that takes experience! And just when we think we have enough, even more experience is required!
Remember this: God has no limits! He formed this planet..He separated the stars, the earth, and the seas! And when the angels thought He was done! God made us in His own image! And when He was done! God suffered! Oh how He suffered! He suffered the betrayal of His creation! He suffered the death of His Beloved Son!
And yet, God still wanted, and continues to yearn for, fellowship and communion with us!
Now I ask you….is being thrown into the increasing fire worth fellowship with God? Is the fact THERE IS A FOURTH MAN IN THE FIRE! worth fellowship with God?
We may not always understand, and perhaps we never will until it is revealed to us, why God allows people to suffer. We may not see any good in it, or any lesson to learn. But God assures us that “in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). We may not know howâ€”we just have to trust him.
But be assured! You are never alone! You aren’t chosen to walk this path alone. Look around you…do you see those faces? Do you recognize them? These are your brothers and sisters..they are in the same fire with you! THEY ARE THEÂ FORTH MAN IN THE FIRE!
Whatever the trial, we can at least be assured of this: “Our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us” (verse 18). We can be confident, even in our trials, that God has something wonderful planned for us. Our trials are only temporary, but the glory will last forever!
Christmas has always been a delight!
I jest, actually.
I remember, sort of, theÂ Christmases of my younger days. Yes! Those were a delight!
My beautiful parents would take our list and buy almost everything we asked for, plus a little bit more.
We were spoiled rotten! Even though they probably struggled with the ensuing credit card bills, and probably a loan or two, Dad and Mom really went all out. Yeah after year…
I remember plenty of family dinners on the night before Christmas…plenty of friends and family came over to eat. But the morning after…was Christmas!
Even after Dad was suddenly taken from us back in ’83 we somehow got our Christmas, things looked better the years after that. Mom worked really hard to push our little family through, with quite a bit of help from Grandma and the rest of the family.
This Christmas, of course, will be the first without Mom, or Dad. We will pull through, but not without some sad memories mixed in with the good ones.
But it will be a much harder one for me personally. If I was lost about the gift-giving before, I am so much more now. I could never figure out what to give my Mother. Now I am kind of upset about not knowing, but not having the money to buy something for my Brother and Nieces.
But the wonderful thing is that they all understand. I hope.
The one gift we always have the joy of giving, was actually handed down to us by the most giving person we don’t have to worry about giving back to. Because we repay Him each and every day that we think about Him and speak to Him, and love Him as He loved us to give us His very best!
May we spread the gift of Jesus to everyone everywhere, because whether we want to admit it or not, we all need Jesus on Christmas, and throughout the year!
Well here’s a big welcome to yet another December.
I love this time of year because it’s when we celebrate the Father’s birthday.
I love to see all the pretty lights,and sometimes even the pretty trees if I happen to see one in one of the casinos here. You know the casinos get into the Holiday Decorating too, just as much as the houses do.
Although Christmas has been commercialized, the fact that so many people decorate, and sometimes go to extreme lengths in their decorating, It reminds me that the spirit of Christmas is still alive. The memory of God’s perfect gift is still with us. Peace and goodwill towards all men.
And in the face of so many lives being lost this week, peace is such a rare thing these days. So many families are missing loved ones because of a few men who decide that evil is the best gift towards the world. Of course, any Christian would see the sharp contrast between good and evil. My hope is that many more will wake up to the reality that life is not always a rainbow.
We can be Christians on a joyful cloud. We have to be in the world today, because we know where, and inÂ WhomÂ our joy lies. But we also must face reality. Jesus said that we would enter into times of trouble…times of poverty, trials, tribulation, times of death.
This is why our Christian witness to the world is so important today. It’s really not about Christmas being about who’s got the best prices on that new phone, or Xbox…etc..
What it’s all about is who’s got the Spirit of the Lord upon them. A Spirit that will go out and preach the Kingdom of God on the street corner, bring the REAL GOOD NEWS to all men, women and children. The news that a baby, born in a manger, has come to save the world from all these evil, mindless robots that are set on doing the devil’s worship, and that the only way to defeat the devil is to continually expose him to a brand of brimstone and hell’s fire the likes of which satan thought didn’t exist anymore.
It’s a fantasticÂ thought that the only gift that will ever truly satisfy any soul, for years to come is Jesus. But it’s sad to think that it is Jesus who will be the only gift that is left unwrapped for what could be eternity. Jesus doesn’t want to be something that is left on the shelf inside your pretty home. Jesus wants to be taken out to the streets…to the people who have no name written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
Jesus came into the world as a shepard…to seek the lost. If this generation keeps going the way it’s been going it will never be found. It’s up to the people of God to stop caring so much about what they can put or take from under the Christmas tree. There’s a world out there that has heard about Jesus, they haven’t heard from Jesus.
They haven’t heard from the people of God. God’s trumpets, God’s clarion call.
I’m reminded daily that thousands are perishing, and that it’s our job as instruments of the Lord, to save many more souls than we thought we had to. Every day another cop ends up shooting to death another soul in Chicago. Is one life lost, or are there two? Both are victims of violence: one because he has to be, the other because he wants to be.
The terrorists are doing their jobs…they are pronouncing death to millions throughout the world, and now they are homing in on our country. One by one they are snuffing out each and every light.
IT’S TIME TO LET OUR LIGHT SHINE OUT IN THIS DARK WORLD.
If we love God, we must be bearers of the Way, The Truth, and the Life. We have to be Bearers of The Light. We must do so NOW! Tomorrow another lost soul is going to die.
God, I am sure, hasÂ heard enough of the gospel ofÂ love and grace within the church. Yes, we all know about grace. But there is a time when the grace of God has to mingle with the vengeance of God. It’s time to stop playing with God’s word and actually work it out!
Are you willing to be God’s trumpet?
Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, HereÂ amÂ I; send me. Isaiah 6:8
While we may find our daily lives is a balancing act, our Spiritual life are also a balancing act.
Or at least it should be.
On my last post I mentioned “There has to be an even level approach to preaching/ministering the Word of God” While I was refering to ministering both sides of the Gospel: Repentance and Grace, I also believe that we need to extent that idea in our relationship to the body of believers.
Simply put: we may not always need to deal with all Christians/all people the same way.
Just because one doesn’t believe in a harsh approach to ministering the Gospel doesn’t make them the enemy. Just because someone doesn’t believe in a softer approach to ministering the Gospel doesn’t make them the enemy either.
If we learn to listen, we may actually hear that soft-spoken preacher deliver a scorching message on repentance.
If we learn to listen. we may actually hear that so offensive preacher deliver a heart-warming, soul saving message.
If we learn to listen.
If we learn to understand.
While I don’t believe in always sugar sweet Gospel, according to the reality of the crucifixion of the Lamb of God, Â I do believe in the Fathers’ love for both the lost and found. You know, because our relationship with Jesus is like that: He’s happy when you are on the straight and narrow.
Yet when you start slipping and sliding Â He can get get really stern real quick.
Continue to slide, past the slipping point, and He will start to enforce the laws in a harsh manner.
That’s the point I am afraid is not being preached from the Pulpit.
Truthfully, although a harsh word is so dearly needed in light of the circumstances of the world today, what we really need is a preacher that can go from zero to 120 mph in under 5 seconds.
Remember, you are preaching to a body that needs a harsh rebuke at times, yet a loving word continually.
The Lord doesn’t always rebuke. He does call out for His Bride to come home to Him!
Lean 100% all of the time towards the left or right, and you are NOT going to please God. You cannot run the same circle when God has called you to the straight and narrow.
God is still the Judge, depending on your relationship with Him, He is also the jury and the executioner.
Yeah, Jesus is your lawyer, but still…have you ever seen a lawyer defeat the Law?
Sometimes mercy has to give place to the law. They work hand in hand, like a balancing act.
Always remember what brought you to the Lord: His mercy.
Always remember what kept you in line: His wrath.
So if one Christian comes singing God’s mercies, that doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t know, or don’t care about His wrath.
If another Christian comes preaching Hell’s fire, that doesn’t mean they don’t know, or don’t care about His mercies.
God’s wrath is actually very potent, it will definitely consume you.
But it doesn’t last forever.
His love, however, is everlasting. Forever and ever!!!!
There are two sides to the same God.
Which side are you on?
I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Revelation 22:13
Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. 2 John 1:9
Differing weights are an abomination to the LORD, And a false scale is not good. Proverbs 20:23