Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Very Busy, The Lord is Good

I wanted to post this evening to let you know that I think about you always. I am very busy these days but the Lord has not released me from writing so words will continue to appear here as he leads.

For the past 5 months or so the Lord's finger has been pointing my mind directly at the fundamentals of the faith. Pray, obey, have faith, and stay in his word. Another way of looking at those things is: focus on him. We must keep him as our "first love" (Rev 2:4). There's nothing more important we can do.

The faster life comes at us, the more we need to remember to spend time with our master. I remember you daily in my prayers, please pray for me and my family. The Lord has been incredibly good to me and my family. He is faithful, you can trust him, seek his face.

grace and peace

Saturday, September 26, 2009

New Work

Thanks be to our Lord, I have been given a dream job. I don't want to elaborate on it except to say that our Lord does answer prayer, although sometimes we may have to really wait for it.

My posts my be erratic for awhile while my schedule is in flux, but as the Spirit leads, I will follow and post the thoughts that he gives me.

As I was typing the sentence above, for a brief second the Lord really impressed me with how much he loves us. I actually kind of "felt it" for a moment. Know that we are dearly loved, he cares for you. Continue to pray always, keep the word of God in your hearts and minds and the praise and thanks for our God on your lips at all times.

Blessed be his name, grace and peace

Perseverance, Patience, Led by the Spirit of God

The bible has much to say on the words perseverance and patience:

Romans 5:4
..... perseverance, character; and character, hope. ...
James 1:4
Perseverance must finish its work so that you may bemature and complete, not lacking anything. ...
Ephesians 6:18 ... With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view,be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints ...
2 Peter 1:6
and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control,perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness ...
Revelation 2:2
..... I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. ...
Romans 5:3 Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, becausewe know that suffering produces perseverance ...
2 Thessalonians 1:4 Therefore, among God's churches we boast about your perseverance and faithin all the persecutions and trials you are enduring. ...
2 Corinthians 12:12
The things that mark an apostle--signs, wonders and miracles--were done among you with great perseverance. ...
Revelation 2:19
I know your deeds, your love and faith, your service and perseverance,and that you are now doing more than you did at first. ...
James 1:3
..... because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. ...

James 5:10
Brothers, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. ...
2 Corinthians 6:6 in purity, understanding, patience and kindness;in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love ...
Proverbs 25:15
Through patience a ruler can be persuaded, and a gentle tongue can break a bone. ...With patience you can persuade a ruler, and a soft tongue can break bones. ...
Proverbs 19:11
A man's wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense. ... The learning of a man is known by patience and his glory is to pass over wrongs.

Then we add this:

Romans 8:14
because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.

I am impressed today by the need for perseverance, patience and most of all being led by the Spirit of God. For some reason the Lord is not allowing me to elaborate on this, I'm hitting a stone wall trying to go beyond the words: patience, perserverance, follow the Spirit of God. Since it appears the Lord will not allow me to write more on these things I will leave them for your consideration today.

Whatever it is you have going on in your life today, think about the perseverance and patience necessary to be a follower of Jesus. Also consider the need to follow the Lord's Spirit instead of the ramblings of men. We are to follow the Spirit of God wherever he may lead us, and we are to do this following with patience and perseverance. That is a simple recipe but not always easy one to follow.

done for today, grace and peace

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Do Not Let Your Hearts Be Troubled

John 14:1Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God trust also in me. 2In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. 4You know the way to the place where I am going.”

As the media ratchets up the fear factor with the fear topic du jour (swine flu) it is helpful to remember what our master told us. Do not let your hearts be troubled...Notice that he tells us to not let our hearts be troubled. This is something we make a decision to do, its an action of our will. We tell ourselves "in accordance with our Lord's word I will not allow my heart to be troubled." Next we move on to why our hearts should not be troubled....

Trust in God trust also in me. You know what trust means? Its another way of saying "have faith in" or "believe in."

I want you to let your minds drift back over the past 8 years with me. Since 9/11/2001 think of all the thousands of fear laden messages this world has bombarded us with, and what has happened? How many of the fears sold to us actually came to fruition? How about none of them....As I was running this evening the Lord pointed out to me what we should expect and where we see this in his word. Matt 24 and Luke 17 tell us clearly that we should see pre-flood days right up to and through the day we go into the ark. We should expect days like the days of Sodom and Gomorrah right up to the day we leave the place.

The picture the Lord paints for us of the day he comes back for us is more or less a normal day. There are no fearful sights in the heavens, there are no piles of dead bodies for us to step over to get into the ark, there's just the sound of normal things.

The word portrait our Lord gives us paints a picture of a day like today:

Matt 24:36“No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,f but only the Father. 37As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 40Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. 41Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.

The "days before the flood" point us to days like today.

Luke 17:26Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. 27People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.
28“It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. 29But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all.

The lesson here for us is this: up to the day that Noah entered the ark, things were normal. Up till the day Lot left Sodom, things were normal. It will be just like this when the Lord comes back for us. The day we leave this place will be JUST LIKE the day Noah went into the ark, and the day Lot left Sodom. Until then...do not let your hearts be troubled.

Our God is a God who meets temporal needs. If you have need of something ask him for it then believe you have received it in accordance with Mark 11:24. Remember this as well: Phil4:4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

My testimony is this: the Lord has watched over me and taken care of me from the womb up through this very moment AND there is nothing special about me apart from him who lives in me. Those of us who boast can boast in one thing: the Lord God Almighty. Be encouraged, trust him, do not let your hearts be troubled.

We are dearly loved. Grace and peace.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Pray, Watch, Give Thanks, The Test of Time

Here we have instruction from the Lord on things we should be doing:

Col 4:2Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.

Same theme as we've been on here for months: pray, watch, give thanks....

These are not hard things we have been given to do. These are the things we must do daily. It's important to remember how important "daily" is in our walk with the Lord. We have no idea when our Lord will come back for us, so we must always be ready to meet him. We do not know the "day or hour" he will come to meet us in the air, nor do we know if we will live long enough on this earth to experience the escape from all.

What we do know is that if you are reading this, you have today. What can we do right now to please the Lord? Pray, watch, give thanks.

The Long Run

We are in this walk with Jesus until the Lord comes back for us (rapture), or we go back to him in heaven (death). We could be at this for years. What is going to happen when 2012 rolls around and there still has been no rapture, no time of Jacob's trouble, just our troubled life on earth year in and year out? Will people become discouraged and fall away from the faith because they have been made to wait? We must guard ourselves against such things.

I am convinced that the change of heart the Lord has brought about within me has been to set a pace that is sustainable for a lifetime. We eagerly await our adoption as sons yet the Lord has a day and hour in mind that may not be for years in the future. I have no doubt that there is an escape from all coming for those who are "in Christ" but we have no idea when that will be. I now believe that it is unwise to keep a constant drumbeat of "rapture rapture rapture" because when "rapture" does not show up year after year, people become discouraged and some may fall away.

Don't get me wrong, the rapture/harpazo/escape from all IS coming, however I believe the Lord has impressed me with a different idea of how we approach this event. We maintain a daily readiness for the escape from all by walking daily in a way that pleases our master. If we are ready for the Lord every day then that particular "day and hour" the Lord has in mind for this world will not catch us off guard. If we are living a daily life of prayer, watchfulness and giving thanks we can live in victory for a lifetime and be ready all the time to meet the Lord.

As I have aged, I have seen more clearly what our Lord has done. He tests everything with TIME. The test of time is what proves we are "in Christ" (saved), not one decision on one day of someones life. Anyone can make a 10 second decision, that's easy. What's not so easy is living out our decisions day in and day out for a lifetime. Time is the simple and effective test of things. It is not those who start the race who get the rewards, its those who finish the race.

1 Cor 9:24Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. 27No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

Phil 3:12Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
15All of us who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. 16Only let us live up to what we have already attained.

We must settle this in our minds that we are in this to the very end. We must take the attitude that Paul did so that after preaching to others, we ourselves are not disqualified for the prize. We must press on toward the goal to win the prize.....This thinking is foreign to today's "christian" teachers and preachers. Today it is widely accepted that a 5-10 second "decision for Jesus" is all that is necessary to take hold of the prize. <---and that is why we are told to pray and watch.......what does "watch" mean?

1 archaic a : not able or accustomed to sleep or rest : wakeful b : causing sleeplessness c : spent in wakefulness : sleepless 2 : carefully observant or attentive

Notice that "carefully observant" part of watchful. We are to carefully observe what is in the bible then carefully observe what is taught in this world. When the world is teaching one thing and the bible teaches us something else, what should we do? We reject the world and press forward in the truth. Those who love the world find it hard to reject the world which is why they do not leave their social circles masquerading as "churches."

How many people today are willing to shed worldly friendship, their beloved social circles in order to be found spotless and in the truth? How many are willing to stand (seemingly) alone with the Lord for the truth? Time tests these things. The Lord himself teaches us so that none of us will have an excuse on the day of judgement. When the Holy Spirit knocks on our heart and tells us to do something, but we refuse because we love this world more than we love the truth, what is the price for that?

Let's pray that we may be counted worthy of the prize. Paul was concerned about being disqualified for the prize after preaching to others, are we better than Paul? This world is full of deception, so lets be watchful. Lets especially be thankful for all that our Lord has done for us. Lets spend time every day remembering the good things our God has done for us, the brothers and the world. In a world that sings "what have you done for me lately" let us sing a song of eternal remembrance. We must praise our God for everything he has done, from the very beginning up through right now. We do not have enough time in the day to praise him for everything so lets pick something and start praising him for it now. He is worthy to receive all the praise and the glory and the honor.

done for today, grace and peace

Monday, September 21, 2009

Driving Home the Message

Short one today... this is what stood out to me in the word of God:

Colossians 3:15Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. 17And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

This is just a short passage of scripture but look at how much "give thanks/gratitude" we see in there. Be thankful, keep gratitude in your hearts to God, giving thanks to God always....think there's something the Holy Spirit is trying to tell us there?

The other powerful lesson we get from this is that we teach and admonish one another.....That statement puts all of this world's "clergy" out of work in 6 words. If we teach and admonish and encourage each other, why do we need "clergy" for? Answer? We don't.

Lets be thankful today. Lets remember all the things the Lord has done for us today. Lets keep his praise on our lips at all times. Lets encourage one another while its still called today.

If you are "in Christ" then I pray for you daily. May the Lord bless you and keep you. May his face shine upon you and may he grant you peace.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Rejoice Always

There were many things I could have written to you about today. This is what I sensed was the best topic among the many.

Phil 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Today we are almost through Rosh Hashanah/Feast of Trumpets 2009. This would indicate to me that we have to wait awhile more for the Lord. The Lord has made it clear to me that it is no use to try and pin down the exact "day and hour." We are instructed to be ready every day. There is no argument (except from the insane) against such a readiness. We are ready every day for our Lord.

This daily readiness is closely allied with our word from the Lord today. We are to rejoice in the Lord always. Always means constantly, every hour of every day and more. Paul said "I will say it again: Rejoice!" That was a point of emphasis with him. How can he tell us to rejoice always in such a sick and evil world? He gives us the reason for our constant rejoicing: the Lord is near...Phil 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.

"The Lord is near" is the reason for our constant rejoicing. What problems do we have that he cannot solve? What troubles us today that he cannot move out of our way? Who stands against us today that our Lord's cannot save us from? The Lord is near. He is our "one stop shopping" answer to everything. I know that there are many people in the world who mock such a notion. They consider the worship of our God to be a fantastic delusion and they mock us for it. These people only mock themselves. How do the mockers of the world explain away my 40 years of answered prayer? Do you know how many prayers I have said over my lifetime? Do you know what the statistical probabilities are against having lets say 1,000 consecutive prayers answered?

The Lord is near, so in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. We are to pray with thanksgiving...notice the wording here. How did Paul start of off here in Phil 4? REJOICE ALWAYS.....then he tells us to pray WITH THANKSGIVING. This is powerful stuff friends. If only we could learn how to fully declare our God's praise. If we could learn to keep his praises, his glory and overflowing thanksgiving to him on our lips at all times....well, we could turn the world upside down.

The longer I walk with the Lord, the more I see the simplicity he has called us to. Our Lord told us: Matthew 11:30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." I believe him. There are few things necessary for us to walk with our Lord. We are to believe, be humble, have faith, obey, praise him and tie that all together with love. We don't need any man to hand us some degree to figure that out do we? No, we don't.

It has been written here for months now. We are being called back to the fundamentals of the faith, to a simplicity "in Christ" that seems to elude this world. Men set themselves up as "guru's" and "experts" and "scholars" to control other men. They set themselves up in a system that attempts to force us into reliance on them. We are reliant on no man, but on our faithful Creator alone for everything. Our faithful creator is near, so do not be troubled. Pray with thanksgiving for the things you need and rest "in him."

We may have years to wait for our Lord or he could come back for us tonight, who knows? We don't need to know. We need to remain "in him," and watch for him everyday. While we patiently wait, lets do the things that please him. Lets love, be faithful, be obedient and especially lets have his praise on our lips with thanksgiving all the time. We are dearly loved children, grace and peace

Friday, September 18, 2009

Rosh Hashanah 2009

Rosh Hashanah is a Jewish holiday commonly referred to as the "Jewish new year." It is observed on the first day of Tishrei, the seventh month of the Hebrew calendar as ordained in the Torah, in Leviticus 23:24. Rosh Hashanah is the first of the High Holidays or Yamim Noraim ("Days of Awe"), or Asseret Yemei Teshuva (Ten Days of Repentance) which are days specifically set aside to focus on repentance that conclude with the holiday of Yom Kippur.
Rosh Hashanah is the start of the civil year in the Hebrew calendar (one of four "new year" observances that define various legal "years" for different purposes as explained in the
Mishnah and Talmud). It is the new year for people, animals, and legal contracts. The Mishnah also sets this day aside as the new year for calculating calendar years and sabbatical (shmita) and jubilee (yovel) years. Rosh Hashanah commemorates the creation of man whereas five days earlier, on 25 of Elul, marks the first day of creation.[2]
The Mishnah, the core text of Judaism's oral Torah, contains the first known reference to Rosh Hashanah as the "day of judgment."

Rosh Hashanah 2009.....In 2009 Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) begins at sundown on Friday September 18 and ends at nightfall on Sunday September 20.

^^^^That's tonight....The focus according to the Jewish understanding of this feast is repentance and judgement. This is block of days on the calendar when we can not know the "day or hour" that it occurs in perfect parallel to the way our Lord says he is coming back for us. We know there is a day our Lord has in store for the wicked. Lot walked out of Sodom and when he was far enough out of town, fire and brimstone fell. Life went on as usual for the people of Noah's day right up to the day that he entered the ark....Matt 24:38For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.

There are no idle words in the bible so when we are told "in the days before the flood" which are days just like today, people "were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark," that should mean something to us. Life went on as usual right up to the day that Noah entered the ark, then something happened...something bad to the people outside the ark: they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.

Nobody except our Lord knows whether or not the "coming of the Son of Man" will occur this weekend. Is it possible for the Lord to take us away this weekend? Sure it is. The escape from all/rapture is not our Lord's "second coming." He is not coming to put his feet down on the mount of olives and establish his earthly kingdom, he's just coming down to the clouds this time, not putting feet on earth yet. We will be caught up in the clouds to meet our Lord when the "harpazo/snatching away/escape from all/rapture" occurs.

There are many people in this world who tell us that its pathetic to believe in an escape, somehow we should "man up" and face the tribulation, but our Lord orders us (not suggest) to PRAY FOR ESCAPE from ALL. Escape from all, those are Jesus' words not mine (Luke 21:36).
Interestingly this Rosh Hashanah/Feast of Trumpets falls on a sabbath day. Sabbath days are days of rest. What will happen when we are caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord? We will REST from our trials and tribulations in this world. We will no longer be encumbered by these bodies of death but we will be clothed with life.

Will the Lord come back sometime tonight or tomorrow or Sunday? I guess we'll find out. The Lord has lavished this particular feast "with rapture/escape from all" words and symbols. As I write to you today, the ongoing troubles in the world are at a steady drone as they have been over the past year. Same troubles, different day. In other words, business as usual. Its a time like this weekend that would really catch people off guard. The hordes of hell are not marching around visibly on earth (yet), there's no WW3 in the middle east (yet), the stock market has stabilised (temporarily) with many in the media predicting that the worst is over and good times are just ahead. It's a time like today, or this weekend that our Lord could come back, pull us out of this world and begin the time of Jacob's trouble.

I'm not predicting anything. The Lord has not whispered anything in my ear about this weekend. I haven't had any dream or vision about this. What I do have is the bible which contains neon flashing arrows pointing to this particular feast each year for fulfillment in the days ahead, or maybe even today.

These things are written to you today to remember what you have read in the bible. Remember these words:

Matt 24:42“Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. 43But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. 44So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.
45Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom the master has put in charge of the servants in his household to give them their food at the proper time? 46It will be good for that servant whose master finds him doing so when he returns. 47I tell you the truth, he will put him in charge of all his possessions. 48But suppose that servant is wicked and says to himself, ‘My master is staying away a long time,’ 49and he then begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with drunkards. 50The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. 51He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Let us be found as faithful and wise servants when our Lord shows up for us whenever that may be. I have read arguments in the past that because calendars were monkeyed with in the past that this weekend isn't actually the time of Rosh Hashanah etc. To that I say "so what?" You are not being reminded to look for a particular "day or hour." You are being reminded to be ready for our master whenever he shows up. You are being reminded that Rosh Hashanah and the Feast of Trumpets are about repentance and judgement. Today is as good a day as any to remind ourselves of these things and later, after the escape from all has occured we can judge whose calendar was correct.

Keep the faith. Repent. Let us judge ourselves before our master has to do it for us. We are dearly loved children. Grace and peace

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Our Faith is a Shield

Eph 6:10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.

We are told clearly here that our faith is a shield that protects us from ALL the flaming arrows of the evil one. Here we also see the importance of the word of God. It is an offensive weapon against the attacks of the evil one and not only that, it reaches out into the world to change it in the ways our God determined when he spoke the word. The word of God does what he sent it to do, every time...ALL the time so our mouths and minds and hearts should be full of it.

Last but not least of the points that stand out today:

pray in the Spirit.....
on ALL occasions....
with ALL kinds of prayers and requests....
keep on praying for all the saints....

All is a God word, he uses the word ALL...all the time. The word all is broad and far reaching, a fitting word to be used by the God who truly is God.

So what are we told to do? Armor up, sword out and PRAY with all kinds of prayers and requests, and last but not least, keep you praise and thanks to our God on your lips at all times. These are the things the Lord has been impressing me with for months now. Basics like pray, stay in the word, give thanks and praise to the one who is worthy of it: our God. That's it. These are simple things, but powerful things. We have recently looked at the power of "daily." Pray daily, read our bibles daily, give thanks and praise our God always.

There is no need for some manmade title or degree to understand these simple yet powerful truths. If we will humble ourselves to do these simple things we will see mountains move before our eyes. In order to do these things we need a childlike faith to believe. Those of us who believe like little children will see the Red Sea parted again, mountains moved, trees uprooted and cast into the sea and more. Our God cannot lie, he said we can do these things "if" we believe and do not doubt.

Lets commit ourselves to doing the simple things and lets do them daily. Let us return to a simple child-like faith in Jesus. Let us continue to remember each other in our prayers for our mutual benefit and in obedience to what is written. Pray because our God answers prayers TODAY, I am living proof of it. If we do these things we will not be ashamed on the day our master shows up for us and while he tarries we will see mountains moved on earth. grace and peace

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Love and Cleansing

I almost did not post today because I did not sense any leading from the Spirit on what to write to you about. Alas though, he has given me something to give to you.

1. Focus on Love-this is the most basic fundamental of our faith. Everything we do and say should be rooted and built up in love. The bible tells us that without love, everything we do is useless and meaningless .

Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.

2. Cleansing-the Lord is coming back for a bride, a church that is radiant, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish. We looked ahead at this weekend the Feast of Trumpets/Rosh Hashanah as a possible return opportunity for the Lord, so how do we the church become this "without stain or wrinkle or blemish" church? Through the cleansing/washing with water through the word. It is through the word that we are cleansed and washed. Makes a lot of sense when we consider that the word is Jesus. He cleansed us, he shed his blood for us, and he is the word of God.

That's it. That's all I have been given today. We need to take a look at our love and perfect it. Not love as the world loves but as our God loves. We also need to stay in the word. It is through the cleansing of the word, which is Jesus that we will be ready for our master when he shows up.

May the Lord bless you and keep you today. Grace and peace

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Rosh Hashanah, Feast of Trumpets 2009

Rosh Hashanah 2009

In 2009 Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) begins at sundown on Friday September 18 and ends at nightfall on Sunday September 20.

I would be remiss as a fellow servant if I did not remind you of what lies ahead of us on the calendar. This Friday at sundown begins Rosh Hashanah 2009 which interestingly falls on a sabbath day...a day of rest, which could be a topic all on its own. What makes this time special each year? I have done extensive reading on the escape from all (luke 21:36) rapture of the church and the one place in the year that appears to have bells and whistles and neon lights hanging all over it pointing to the rapture/escape is the feast of trumpets/rosh hashanah.

I have asked the Lord repeatedly about this year, will this weekend be the "great escape" etc? So far, the Lord has given me nothing, no impression or indication whatsoever that anything will happen this weekend. What he has given me and you is his word. To brush up on why the feast of trumpets is a special time each year, please read this brothers work:


then read


He sums up the case nicely. There are many other places on the internet where brothers have reached the same conclusion, the feast of trumpets is like all the other feast days, it is special...

As I look at where we stand this year, I see a world that is a picture perfect parallel for the days of Noah and Lot we read about in Luke 17 and Matt 24. Our Lord is coming back for us in days that are just like today. We are told that eating and drinking, planting and building, marrying and giving in marriage are the inidicators we are to look for with our Lord's return for the church. If the time of Jacob's trouble was the time the Lord would return, then we would see wording similar to the words used in the book of Revelation...but we don't.

In spite of the economic troubles facing this world, life for many people goes on as usual. Last year at this time things were (seemingly) at a boiling point. I was among many who thought "this is it," but it wasn't. I think that this years Feast of Trumpets/Rosh Hashanah time window is more likely than last years to see the escape from all. That does not mean anything will happen mind you, it just "fits" more closely with the description of the days of Noah and Lot that we see in Luke 17 and Matt 24.

This time each year is a good time to take stock of our lives. It's a good time to determine if we are "in the faith" and "in Christ." I asked the Lord this morning if this was something he even wanted me to write about and I sensed that I had a "green light" to go ahead. I believe its a useless excercise to try to predict the "day and hour" that our Lord will show up because he told us to be ready every day. He told us to be always watching, ready and alert so when he does show up we are ready for him.

It is possible that over the course of this week, some of the servants of the Lord who are now on earth, will be in heaven as a result of the escape from all promised in Luke 21:36. I have no idea when the escape will take place, nor do I need to know, I just need to be ready, just like you. There is a worthiness factor to be considered with this escape from all thats about to happen. I believe we are to take a hard look at ourselves to determine for ourselves if we think we are worthy, and if not, why not? We should judge ourselves, we should remember what we have received and heard and obey it:

Rev 3:3 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; obey it, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.

If we do not "wake up" our Lord will come like a thief to us. That says to me that if we do "wake up" his coming will not be like a thief. This is the whole point of what is written here today. The reason I believe the Lord allowed me to write on this today is not to predict his coming this weekend, but to get us to "wake up." If we "wake up" then it won't matter when our Lord shows up for us because we will be ready for him. Along these same lines, the title of yesterday's post was "Daily." It was all about the importance of daily walking with the Lord, daily prayer, and daily bible reading. Keeping ourselves ready daily will ensure that on "that day" when our Lord shows up, we will not be ashamed at his coming.

I beleive that shortly before the Lord takes us out of this world, we will be told its about to happen. Where do I get that from?

Luke 17:22 And he said unto his disciples, 'Days will come, when ye shall desire to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and ye shall not behold it; 23 and they shall say to you, Lo, here; or lo, there; ye may not go away, nor follow; 24 for as the lightning that is lightening out of the one part under heaven, to the other part under heaven doth shine, so shall be also the Son of Man in his day; 25 and first it behoveth him to suffer many things, and to be rejected by this generation. 26 'And, as it came to pass in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of Man; 27 they were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were given in marriage, till the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the deluge came, and destroyed all; 28 in like manner also, as it came to pass in the days of Lot; they were eating, they were drinking, they were buying, they were selling, they were planting, they were building; 29 and on the day Lot went forth from Sodom, He rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed all. 30 'According to these things it shall be, in the day the Son of Man is revealed; 31 in that day, he who shall be on the house top, and his vessels in the house, let him not come down to take them away; and he in the field, in like manner, let him not turn backward; 32 remember the wife of Lot. 33 Whoever may seek to save his life, shall lose it; and whoever may lose it, shall preserve it. 34 'I say to you, In that night, there shall be two men on one couch, the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left; 35 two women shall be grinding at the same place together, the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left; 36 two men shall be in the field, the one shall be taken, and the other left.' 37 And they answering say to him, 'Where, sir?' and he said to them, 'Where the body is, there will the eagles be gathered together.'

What does this tell us?

'According to these things it shall be, in the day the Son of Man is revealed; 31 in that day, he who shall be on the house top, and his vessels in the house, let him not come down to take them away; and he in the field, in like manner, let him not turn backward; 32 remember the wife of Lot. 33 Whoever may seek to save his life, shall lose it; and whoever may lose it, shall preserve it.

If someone is on their house top, it would take time and a reason to go down into the house to get their stuff....Time and a reason would come from being on the housetop and getting a word somehow from the Lord that "its time." The warning here is that our heart should have no strings attached to the "stuff" of this world. When we hear the "its time" from our Lord our hearts should be 100% focused heavenward with zero attachments to this world. This is reinforced by the "worthiness" factor we read about in Luke 21:36. What does it take to be counted "worthy?" Apparently having a heart set on the Lord and heaven and severed from the things of this world is a part of it. Remember Lot's wife....

grace and peace

Monday, September 14, 2009


This weekend the Lord impressed upon me the importance of daily things. The things we do daily often seem small, but as I have learned, there are no small things. The seemingly small things are the big things. It's the seemingly insignificant things we do each day that make a difference in life and eternity. What's 5-30 min out of each day for us? Its a small chunk of time, but when multiplied by 365 days per year thats somewhere in the neighborhood of 182 hours. Those hours put to use on anything in your life are going to make a huge difference.

Proverbs 8:34
Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway.

Luke 9:23
Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.

1 Thessalonians 4:11Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, 12so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.

Hebrews 3:13
But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness.

Matt 6:9“This, then, is how you should pray:
“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10your kingdom come,
your will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
11Give us today our daily bread.
12Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.'

The lesson for us today is that our walk as servants and slaves of righteousness is a daily one. Our walk has nothing to do with some "slam bam thank you ma'am" 30 second 'decision' we made 15 years ago. Our walk with the Lord is daily. Blessed are those who wait daily at the doors of our master.

Notice the 3 key words we see in this statement: Proverbs 8:34 Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway.

listen...watch...wait....and how often do we do these things? Daily.

It is not the things we do once in awhile that have a lasting positive impact in life, its the things we do daily that have a lasting positive impact. There are lots of things we can do once in awhile to have a lasting negative impact on our lives.

Let's examine our lives today to determine what we are aiming towards. What kind of outcome do we expect from this life? What are we doing daily in that direction? What kind of difference can even 5 minutes daily make in a life? Do not underestimate the impact of daily. Something is better than nothing as long as its daily.

The way we can finish the race that is marked out for us is to make daily efforts toward finishing. We live in a world that overlooks "small" in favor of "flash" and big things. Small efforts add up to big achievements in any area you want to consider, fitness, academic study of a topic, prayer, bible study. Many people think that if they cant stay for 3 hours on their knees then why bother doing anything? That's terrible thinking. There is no such thing as small. Give what time you feel you have today, let tomorrow take care of itself. Give your effort today, with whatever strength you have today and watch tomorrows results with amazement.

If all the time you feel you have is to read one sentence out of the bible each day, then do that. Remember this parable:

Matt 25:14“Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. 15To one he gave five talentsa of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. 17So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. 18But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.
19“After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.’
21“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
22“The man with the two talents also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.’
23“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
24“Then the man who had received the one talent came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’
26“His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.
28“‘Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. 29For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. 30And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

Wow. Everyone who has will be given more. Put forth the effort you "have" today and in time you will have an abundance. If we are like the servant who buried his talent, we will end up with nothing, even what we had will be taken away. Do what you can with what you have. There's no such thing as "small" when you add up "small" over time.

Grace and peace

Friday, September 11, 2009

Treasure Hidden in the Word of God

Yesterday the Lord showed me something wonderful. One of the overriding themes the Holy Spirit has impressed me with now for months is praise. We must learn to praise our God, we must learn to put him first and keep him first in our hearts and minds. So what does the Lord show me yesterday? Some treasure buried in the perfect prayer, that is, the prayer Jesus taught us:

Matt 6:9“This, then, is how you should pray:
“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10your kingdom come,
your will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.

11Give us today our daily bread.
12Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.

Here's what I want you to see this morning. Look carefully at this perfect prayer our Lord taught us. How does it begin? What's first?

1. The focus is on who? The Lord...“‘Our Father in heaven,
2. Once we have addressed and focused on the Lord, what's the very next thing?
PRAISE for HIM........hallowed be your name
3. After praise for our God, where is our focus next? His kingdom, His will...10your kingdom come,your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

So....the perfect prayer, the prayer Jesus taught us has praise first, then his will and his kingdom next, THEN we get to us......Give us today our daily bread.....

What does this add up to? What's the "lesson learned?" HE COMES FIRST, not us. His praise, his will, his kingdom come FIRST. Friends, this really really needs to sink in. We MUST fully grasp and comprehend and make a lasting impression on ourselves with this. How many times have we said this prayer without thinking of what we are really saying? How many times did we not "get" the pattern our God was trying to show us. Did I say "pattern?" Indeed I did. There is a way, a pattern that we as servants are to follow. The most basic way to state the pattern is "him first, then us." We see this clearly in the Lord's prayer, do we see it anywhere else? Sure we do:

Matthew 6:33
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

Psalm 100:4
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise;give thanks to him and praise his name.

The very second we decide to approach our God, his praise and thanksgiving need to be on our lips. That's why we say "hallowed be thy name" FIRST in the Lord's prayer. His praise comes first:

Hebrews 13:15
Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise--the fruit of lips that confess his name.

I cannot overstate just how important this is. What is calling itself the church today has gone so far astray. It's time to get back to fundamentals of the faith and there is nothing more fundamental than this. This is "Christianity 101." In this 101 class the first topic is his praise, his glory, thanksgiving to him.

Psalm 34 has always been my favorite, and just look at the very first verse:

Psalm 34:1I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips.

It's everywhere we look in the bible but do we "get it?" Do we understand just how important his praise is? His kingdom, his will, his glory are FIRST.

I know that you "get it" so now we just have to do it. This is fundamental. What is a christian without praise on his lips? Let us be found with his praise and thankgiving ALWAYS on our lips, in our hearts and in our minds. If you have been looking for one thing you can do to transform your walk with the Lord, and your life in general, then learn to do this: praise Him.

Grace and peace

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Turning To a Different Gospel

Here we are just a few days later looking at the same issue: people turning to a different gospel which is no gospel at all....Please read:

Galatians 1:6I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel7which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. 8But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned! 9As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!
10Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ.

Paul was astonished at how fast people deserted the true gospel for a false one, and this wasn't the first church he had to write this to. We just looked at 2 Cor 11:4 a few days ago where we read this:

2 Cor 11:4 For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.

So now we are looking at both the Corinthian and the Galatian churches astonishgly, easily turning to a "different gospel." Paul tells us clearly that a "different gospel" is no gospel at all and the men that preach them should be/will be eternally condemned.

Ok, so what's the point? The point is, if Paul pointed it out in 2 churches back to back when he was alive, what kind of "gospels" do you think are being preached today AND where's the warning about these false gospels and the men that preach them? Why is it important to be warned of false gospels and the men who preach them? Because a "different gospel" is no gospel at all which means it cannot save you.

I know that todays brand of "christianity" tells you not to worry about it because you "made a decision" during a teary eyed alter call at some point in your life, but what does the bible tell us? There are no idle words in the bible. Why was this idea of "a different gospel" important enough that Paul wrote 2 letters back to back to the Corinthian and Galatian churches to warn them about what they were accepting as "truth?"

When is the last time your "pastor" warned you about the different gospels being preached in the world and the men that preach them? I'd be willing to bet you have never been warned about these things, why not? It's sitting right there in the bible, why have you not been reminded of what has been written? At least part of the reason is what Paul says after he writes about the "different gospel," he asks "am I trying to please men?" Obviously not. Paul correctly states that once someone commits to Jesus, trying to please men goes out the door. We cannot be servants of Christ and want to please men because this example of pointing out the false gospels men preach will make you HATED by men. So we are left with a choice, please men or please God. Preach the truth in its ENTIRETY or preach an empty/half gospel as so many do today which is no gospel at all.

These things are important considerations for those of us who are waiting on our Lord. I wonder if people who are "so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel" I wonder if they will be counted worthy of the escape from all we see coming in the future (Luke 21:36). I wonder if the people who so easily accept a different gospel will "pass the test" we read about here:

2 Corinthians 13:5
Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do younot realize that Christ Jesus is in you--unless, of course, you fail the test?

I thought for sure that today I would be able to write something kissed with sunshine and sugarsnaps for you but following the leading of the Spirit does not always work out that way. In a world filled with evil and wickedness the Lord will use someone to warn people, he always does. As a human I much prefer to write about pleasant things. But I can tell you that if the Holy Ghost has me zig zagging, up down and all over the place, warn, encourage, or whatever else, that's what I'm going to do. This servant knows that self must die in order for the Lord to use us. His will be done, on earth just as it is in heaven.

The takeaway from this today is that we need to test ourselves, really examine ourselves and what we are accepting as truth. Nobody will admit that what they think is truth is really a lie, yet the bible tells us that many will go through the wide gate that leads to destruction and only a few will make it through the small gate that leads to life (Matt 7:13-23).

The moment I think I have the Lord's direction figured out he takes me in a different direction. So be it. We are dearly loved children, may the Lord bless you and keep you today, may his face shine upon you and may he grant you peace.

P.S. The Lords kindness and love has been revealed to me again today. In spite of the troubles in this world, our God does answer prayer. He does take care of his children, he does provide for us in spite of the world and all its workings. With everything inside me I praise him today. I encourage you to seek the Lord's face today, do not stop praying. If you have stopped, please start praying again. Believe that you will receive answers from this God of ours, even if you have to wait for the answers to show up. We all have to wait, but when the answers do show up-and they will, you will add your testimony to mine that our God is good and he does what his word says he will do. grace and peace

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Examine Yourselves

As I read through the bible I see place after place after place where what is written is not reflected in todays brand of "christianity." Read this example below:

2 Cor 15:5Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in youunless, of course, you fail the test? 6And I trust that you will discover that we have not failed the test. 7Now we pray to God that you will not do anything wrong. Not that people will see that we have stood the test but that you will do what is right even though we may seem to have failed. 8For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. 9We are glad whenever we are weak but you are strong; and our prayer is for your perfection. 10This is why I write these things when I am absent, that when I come I may not have to be harsh in my use of authority—the authority the Lord gave me for building you up, not for tearing you down.

Here's what I would like you to reflect on this morning: has your "pastor" ever told you to examine yourselves to see whether or not you are in the faith? I mean, ever? I can tell you that I spent many years being "serviced" by todays CEO style christian guru "pastors" and I never heard one of them...ever even hint around this idea. That my friends is more evidence that what we see in the world is a church preaching a different Jesus according to a different spirit and a different gospel than the one we read about in the bible.

Let me ask you this, when the world conflicts with the word of God, what should we do? Ignore the word so we can be at peace with the world? Never. Also notice this with me, Paul tells the Corinthian church to examine themselves, to test themselves, and as he mentions later in verse 10 he does this in order to build them up, not tear them down.

The partial gospel preached in so many churches today tears people down. The "pastors" may think they are doing people a favor by only cherry picking the most pleasant and pleasing words from our Lord's words, but doing this will never allow the people to achieve the perfection we are told to aim for. Behold:

2 Cor 13:11Finally, brothers, good-by. Aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.

Only when we have the whole counsel of God can we ever hope to move closer to the goal of perfection. As this servant has written before, I believe the Lord is calling us to the very center of his will for us. We are being led towards perfection "in Christ." Would any respected teacher do otherwise? Good teachers show you the right way, the perfect way to achieve things. They may give you crutches along the way to help you along the path where you are troubled, but the goal is always perfection.

Here's another thing I've never once heard any preacher, "pastor" whatever mention:

Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test?

Christ Jesus is in you, UNLESS you fail the test. Fail the test? Are you reading this? Christ Jesus is in you unless you fail the test. This statement along with so many others in the bible stabs a rapier through the heart of the OSAS "once saved always saved" argument doesn't it? Either that or Paul is out of his mind and so is the Holy Spirit and we know that cannot be the case. There is a "test" that we must pass. If we do not pass this "test" then Christ Jesus is not in us, and if he is not in us, we are not "saved."

When is the last time your "pastor" talked to you about the importance of this "test" we read about in 2 Corinthians? Do they not think its important? Do they think you are not "spiritual" enough to handle it? Do they think it will be bad for this weeks "tithe" collection? Why don't they ever mention it?

Along the lines of passing this "test" we have this relevant and recurring passage of scripture:

Luke 21:34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. 35 For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.

We must pray always that we may be accounted worthy to escape.....We know that many preachers and teachers talk about the rapture, but how many talk about the worthiness necessary to take part in it?

Accounted worthy? Examine ourselves? Test ourselves? Pass the test?

These ^^are recurring themes in the bible that are passed over by todays "christianity." They are not good topics to maintain "church attendance" and the financial bottom line..I understand. Why is this being written about today? How does todays writing fit into the 4 month or so theme of Jesus calling us to him? The Lord is coming back for a spotless bride. He expects holiness from us and a heart inclined towards perfection. He searches our hearts and minds. What is he finding when he searches us?

As we move down this narrow road that leads us through the small gate that leads to life, there is little room on either side for deviation. Broad roads have lots of room for maneuver, ours does not. The Lord is faithful to forgive us our tresspasses while we are living. As I read the pages of the New Testament I see Paul chastising the churches for different kinds of bad behavior that causes him to tell the churches things like "hey guys, you need to examine yourselves." We need to be our own harshest critics, but not for the purpose of tearing down, for building us up. Its called CONSTRUCTIVE criticism and many times we are the only ones (along with the Lord) who can criticize ourselves for things without hard feelings or resentment.

We serve a very good God. He loves us and he has proven his faithfulness to this servant over and over and over again. Our God answers prayer. Our God honors his promises, he watches over his word to ensure it does what it was sent to do. Let's examine ourselves in order to perfect our walk with our God. Lets set our hearts on doing things that please him. As the Spirit searches our hearts and minds, lets do some internal "housecleaning" to make sure that there are no doors in our "house" the Spirit will open and say "WHOA, what's that?" Judgement starts with the church and our loving God starts judgement with the "easy way" of us judging ourselves (with the Spirits help) so he does not have to use the "hard way" of external judgement on us.

Today is a good day. Thank him. Let his praise be continually on your lips. Remember what he has done for you, your family and all the brothers. May he bless you and keep you today and may he grant you peace.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

A Different Jesus, A Different Spirit, A Different Gospel

I was hoping to write on something more uplifting today but the brakes are on right here. Please read:

2 Corinthians 11
1I hope you will put up with a little of my foolishness; but you are already doing that. 2I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him. 3But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. 4For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.

This blog is titled "Christian Apostasy." The reason this blog was started was because of the Spirit's leading to expose something that has been growing in the world for years. Anyone who reads the bible and compares what is written in the bible to what we see in the world calling itself "christianity" should experience some "cognitive dissonance." What that means is, what we are reading about in our bibles is not what we are seeing in the world, yet they both call themselves "Christian."

The devil is very clever, he keeps the names the same to make everyone think they are reading from the same sheet of music but the truth is in the world what is calling itself "christianity" is anything but. I don't expect you to take my word for it, read your bible. Read this passage of scripture we find ourselves with today, what does it say? It talks about a different Jesus, a different spirit and a different gospel. Familiar words there right? Jesus, spirit, gospel? People throw those words around all the time but it is obvious to us who seek the truth that not everything called Jesus is Jesus the son of God, not every spirit is the Spirit of God Almighty, and not every gospel is the gospel of peace that reconciles men to God and saves the soul.

So the next time you "go to church" please remember that when you hear the word "Jesus" you should be asking "which one?" When you hear the word "spirit" ask "which one?" When you hear the word "gospel" ask "which one?" You need to ask because there are MANY different "jesus, spirit, gospel" counterfeits in this world. This point cannot be overstated. Why is it a big deal? Only one "Jesus, Spirit and Gospel" will save you.

Time and again on this blog I have seen the Lord lead the writing back to the same exact place over and over again and here we are again. Welcome back to Matt 7:13-23:

Matt 7:13 Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
15“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
21“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ 23Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

A persistant question is raised within me every time I read this ^^^^.....WHY will so few be saved? WHY will many go to destruction? WHY will people who call Jesus "Lord" be told ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ Is this brother the only person who is stopped in his tracks every time he reads this? WHY?

Todays subject is part of the answer "why?" People who worship a different "Jesus" are likely on the broad road to destruction. People who received a "different spirit" are likely on the road to destruction. People who listen to and receive a "different gospel" are likely on the road to destruction. They do exist, or Paul would never have told the corinthian church "you put up with it easily enough."

The Lord has impressed upon me over the past 4 months the need to center ourselves "in him." We are to pray and expect answers, his praise is to always be on our lips. We are to seek his face, we are to believe and purify ourselves of anything that hinders our walk with him. I do not see todays post as a bludgeoning tool but as an encouragement to us to carefully examine our ways. We are responsible before our Lord for what we do and what we believe. We will all give an answer for ourselves to the Lord one day and that's what the writing here is about.

I wonder how many people will end up destroyed because they were not warned? If you are reading this, you are not among those who have not been warned. This instrument who is writing this now has been warned along with you. Perhaps those of us who have been warned of the false christs and false spirits and false gospels can make a difference in the eternal destination of a soul or two. The value of even one soul is beyond counting.

I believe that time is short, but I have no word or direction from the Lord on that. We could have years to wait, so while we wait I pray that we will be found with our God's praises on our lips, with his word in our heart and with love for one another binding everything together.

May the Lord bless us and keep us today, in Jesus name...AMEN

Monday, September 07, 2009

Servants and Slaves of Righteousness

Now that we know what a "minister" is (a servant):

We can move onto what it is we do as servants. One of the fundamentals of being a servant is humility. We can't serve our God if we are being actively opposed by our God (he opposes the proud (1 peter 5:5, James 4:6). Once we are humbled then we can serve. Our first acts of service always belong to the Lord. He is first.....always. This is where so many people have missed the mark. He is our primary focus, he must be served. Where do we see this idea in action?

Revelation 2:4
Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love.

First love? Yep, first is reserved for Jesus. Where else do we see this?

Nehemiah 10:35 ... and that they might bring the first fruits of our ground and the first fruits ofall the fruit of every tree to the house of the LORD annually,

Leviticus 2:14 And if you offer a meat offering of your first fruits to the LORD, you shall offerfor the meat offering of your first fruits green ears of corn dried by the ...

Ezekiel 44:30 ... "The first of all the first fruits of every kind and every contribution of everykind, from ... The priests should have the best of all the first ripened fruits. ...

Exodus 34:26 ... "You shall bring the very first of the first fruits of your soil into thehouse of the LORD your God. "You shall not boil a young

You see that? Over and over again, who gets "first" everything? Our Lord does. He is first....

So we see that as servants, our Lord comes first. We are to focus on him:

Psalm 32:9
Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you.

We are not like animals that have no understanding, who will only come to you with the use of bit and bridle. We are servants who know our responsibility is first and foremost to our Lord. With this understanding, with our focus on the Lord, what are we to do as his servants?


Ephesians 1:12 in order that we, who were the first to hope in ...
... He planned all of this so that we who had already focused ourhope on Christ would praise him and give him glory. ...

1 Chronicles 16:9 Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his ...
Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. ... Sing to him. Makemusic to praise him. Meditate on all the miracles he has done.

Romans 15:11 And again, "Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles, and ...
... And again, "PRAISE THE LORD ALL YOU GENTILES, AND LET ALL THE PEOPLES PRAISE HIM." ...And again, Praise the Lord, all ye Gentiles; and laud him, all ye people.

Psalm 150:2 Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his ...
Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. ... PraiseHim for His mighty deeds; Praise Him according to His excellent greatness.

I could go on and on with these places in the bible where we are told to praise him. The moment our mind has the thought to approach our glorious God, we should begin to PRAISE...it is with praise that we approach our God:

Psalm 100:4
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.

Psalm 34:1I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips.

Philippians 4:6
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition,with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

I'm not going to go on and on with this, you get the point. If there is anything I sense the Spirit of God impressing upon me these days, its about his praise, thanks and glory to him, first and foremost. How many problems would we not have if we learned to praise and thank him for what he has already done. How many troubles could we avoid if we learned to approach him every day with praise on our lips? Is there not something you can find to thank the Creator for today? Find it and put it on your lips in thanksgiving and praise today.

We are servants, and serving our God first is the first thing we have to learn. He is first, no matter what. First love belongs to him, every day. If we love the people around us then we will understand that the best way to love people is by loving our God first. It is only with and through our God that we can do anything for people anyway.

Thank him today. Praise him today. He is worthy to receive all the praise and thanksgiving and glory...it all belongs to him.

grace and peace

A Minister, A Ministry, Titles Men Give Themselves

Adj.1.ministrant - ministrant-, to serve, from minister, servant; giving practical help to; "a ministering angel"; "the angels ministrant sang"; "the attending physician"

Most people today have been programmed to accept the nicolaitan (clergy) religious system as a replacement for true christianity. The problem with that is that even when they read the bible today, it is of little use to them because they have a "programmed response" to the words written there. Lets look at one example of this with the word "minister." Do you know what a "minister" is? The world would have you believe its some guy who dresses fancy and stands above you on a raised platform to speak the words of God down to you. When you look up the word "minister" what it actually means is servant.

This is an important point that we can't gloss over. Today we have people running around calling themselves "ministers" which in turn evokes a programmed response in the heads of people of "oh, he must be special...he must be close to God" when the reality from the bible is, a minister is a servant. Think about the difference. When someone calls themselves a "minister" today, there's a certain amount of glory they expect to come with the title, but why do we hear of nobody walking around calling themselves a lowly servant? Nobody wants to call themselves or think of themselves as a "servant" because the "servant" in this world is looked down upon. There is no glory in this world for anyone who is called a "servant," but that is precisely what we are called to be. We are lowly servants. If you consider yourself a "minister" then understand what you really are is a servant and the next time someone asks you what you do tell them you are a servant, or better yet a slave. A slave? Yep, another "no glory for me" term from the bible that is shunned and looked down upon in this world:

Romans 6:18
You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness

1 Timothy 4:6
... If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine

When you look this word "minister" up in a greek lexicon, it gets even less glorious:
διακονος -diakonos- dee-ak'-on-os: an attendant, i.e. (genitive case) a waiter (at table or in other menial duties); a servant. The term "minister" here means an "attendant" or someone like a waiter at a table or someone else who does menial duties. You read that? Menial duties, no glory....no fancy title... we are menial, nobody, servants and slaves.

A great example of what we are looking at is here:

John 13:12When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13“You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

I think we all understand that there is nothing glorious about getting down on our knees and washing each others feet but that is exactly what we are called to by our Lord and master. We do not "lord ourselves over" our brothers as todays clergy through their pastoral/nicolaitan system have done. We do not stand on raised platforms and speak down to the brothers, we are on our knees. How can a slave/servant who is on his knees washing the dirt off a brothers feet speak down to another brother? Answer? Its physically impossible, he can't.

People may wonder why all the fuss about names and titles? What's the big deal? We know that names and titles ARE a big deal which is why men have created for themselves titles and names that honor themselves. Names and titles are also associated with pride and pride was the original sin. Who cares about what men think about names and titles though, what does our God think about names and titles? Do you think that he thinks it is important what wedo and do not call ourselves?

If names were not important to our God, then why do we read this?

Phil 2:9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name,

and this

Psalm 138:2 I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your love and your faithfulness, for you have exalted above all things your name and your word.

and most importantly this:

Matt 23:5Everything they do is done for men to see: They make their phylacteriesa wide and the tassels on their garments long; 6they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues; 7they love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to have men call them ‘Rabbi.’
8But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one Master and you are all brothers. 9And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. 10Nor are you to be called ‘teacher,’ for you have one Teacher, the Christ.b 11The greatest among you will be your servant. 12For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.

There's everything summed up nice and neat in one passage of scripture. We are not to call the clergy members of this world by any honorary titles. Why? We are all brothers and we have ONE MASTER. That one master is not a man, its Jesus the Son of God. Men have created religious systems with religious titles (like "pastor") that we are not to use to honor any man. Go through the book of timothy using a literal translation of the bible and see that there is no mention of "pastor" or "bishop" or "deacon" or any other of today's manmade titles. You will see manmade titles in the KJV and most other translations but they use those man glorifying titles to their own shame. Pull up a parallel bible that compares the KJV to a literal translation like YLT and you will see the truth. Here's just one example, look at how radically different the translations are:

1 Timothy 3:1 (KJV) This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.

1 Timothy 3:1 (YLT) Stedfast is the word: If any one the oversight doth long for, a right work he desireth;

Radically different ^^^

We are humble servants and slaves of one another and our Lord Jesus. How much error and sin has been introduced into the church through the manmade religious systems and titles we see all around us today? How much pride is bound up in these men who speak down to you from raised platforms every Sun-day with their manmade titles (pastor..correct translation is poimen=shepherd-Eph 4:6). How much leverage has the enemy gained over the church because men have chosen their own ways based on manmade tradition instead of the word of God?

There was a time when the errors committed by men in perpetuating the idolatrous nicolaitan system and pride filled titles was more excusable than it is today. Why you ask? Because with increased knowledge comes increases responsibility. Today we have something called "the internet" which gives men the knowledge of the world with the touch of a button. I can do one 3 second search and get results of one sentence of scripture in 15 different bible version and one more click gives me each word in that sentence in Greek or Hebrew. Like I said, we who have such tools are without excuse. What "pastor" today does not use the internet? They all do. So why do they perpetuate a babylonian system that has no foundation in the bible? They do it because they revere and respect the traditions of men.

Men love titles and honor but our bible tells us that the way of truth is not that way. The flesh loves to exalt itself, the Word and the Spirit call us to humility in everything to INCLUDE the titles we use for ourselves. For this reason you have never seen the word "ministry" used on this blog to refer to what is done here. Why? I am a brother and a servant, a nobody. We need to be very careful how we view ourselves. We need to be careful about praise we accept when it comes from men. Who cares about praise from men that comes to us one day and turns to criticism the next day? I will gladly accept praise from God though which we must work for and strive for until we stand before him.

Why write about this today? The writing here for 4 or so months has been about preparing ourselves to meet our Lord. Part of our preparation is detoxifying ourselves from the world and its ways. We are told to be separate from the world which includes things calling themselves "christian" which are not:

14Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? 15What harmony is there between Christ and Belialb? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? 16What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.”17Therefore come out from them and be separate,says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing,and I will receive you.”d 18“I will be a Father to you,and you will be my sons and daughters,says the Lord Almighty.”

The Lord is my witness when I tell you that I have been in many of these manmade buildings that are called "churches" in this world and I have sense more darkness than light. When our spirit senses the darkness, what should we do? Well, what does the word of God say?

what fellowship can light have with darkness?
Therefore come out from them and be separate,says the Lord.

The last "church" I attended, the only reason I went in the doors the last time was because I had volunteered as an usher and I did not want to break my promise for that last time. During the entire "service" my stomach was turning like I had a fist in my gut letting me know "this is not it" as in, not the "house of God."

The Lord used to dwell in the ark of the covenant but these days he lives in jars of clay, that is....you and me. Wherever we go, that's where the Lord is. Pretty awesome to think about really. The writing here today is not to condemn you or any other individual, but to encourage you to right thinking in accordance with the Word of God. We are to purify ourselves. The Lord is coming back for a spotless holy bride. Anything that would hinder our walk with the Lord must be done away with, and that includes manmade religious systems, pride, ego, titles and anything else that gets in our way.

one last point and then I'm done.

Probably one of the most important take aways from all this is that we must remain humble to be in fellowship with our God. People who walk around in life puffed up with pride for whatever reason are actively opposed by our God and that is not a good thing for someone who is striving to walk with God. Pride was the original sin and it is alive and well in todays world. We must take a hard look at ourselves and see ourselves as the humble servants and slaves that we are. We can title ourselves as brother, sister, servant and slave without fear that we are puffing ourselves up with pride. Have you ever heard that saying "the devil is in the details?" Well our God lives in the details as well. There are no little things, the smallest things are really the big things. Let us watch our lives and behavior carefully that we do not hinder our walk with the great God we serve:

1 Peter 5:5
... All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because,"God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble."

James 4:6
But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble."

Isaiah 57:15 For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.

So let us walk in humility toward each other and our God. With this in mind I can safely say I am not a "minister", and never will be. Also, I do not have a "ministry." I am a brother though, here to serve and as an obedient slave do what our master commands me to do. There is no glory in any of this for me because even after doing everything I have been told to do, I am still just an unworthy servant who is doing his duty. We must adjust our thinking to what we really are, unworthy servants and slaves:

Luke 17:10
So you also, when you have done everything you were told to do, should say,'We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty.'"

Will that kind of thinking assist us in walking in humility to other people and the Lord? I think so. Grace and peace