Thursday, September 30, 2021

What are You Doing? Yes, You...

What are You Doing? Yes, You...

He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold. You, Lord God, know my frame. You do not afflict willingly, nor grieve the children of men. Your solid foundation stands, having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity.” But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. Therefore if I cleanse myself from the latter, I will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for You, my Master, prepared for every good work. You will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; and as You will purify the sons of Levi, so purge me as gold and silver, that I may offer to You an offering in righteousness. You will refine me as silver is refined. I will call on Your name, and You will answer me. You will say, “This is one of My people”; and I will say, “The Lord is my God.” 

Lord, refine me and purge me of the dross that I may be a vessel of honor for Your kingdom use. 

JOB 23:10; PSALM 103:14; LAMENTATIONS 3:33; 2 TIMOTHY 2:19–21; MALACHI 3:3; ZECHARIAH 13:9. - Dr. David Jeremiah Life-Changing Moments with God 

My Dear Reader:

The most important thing for you to note is this day you are now in is a gift to you. 
You didn't just move through time because you can. Your very breath has been given to you by your Creator as a gift with a generous measure of hope built in. Hope that you would listen and come to Christ for salvation. That you, my Friend, would indeed be a world changer, by living for the One who saved you. 

You who are in Christ are not your own, as the Bible says, we were bought with a price, the precious blood of Christ Jesus. 

You and I needed atonement for the sin we were born under. We are guilty from birth. We cannot possibly do enough, say enough, live good enough lives long enough, to overcome that Judgment of God given out through Adam and Eve. 

You cannot do life alone and apart from God!  You will fill your time with things and events that draw you away from the One who desires to save you. 

You cannot go another moment without a right relationship with Jesus. He's at the door of your heart asking to come in. 

For those reading this who are indeed saved in Christ Jesus, your life should be lived to the glory of God, not your own. Read the Scriptures well, trials and tribulations are a part of the life of everyone, but moreso those who have come to Christ for salvation. It's just a fact of life. 

We, however, are not alone in this world, who are in Christ. God has indeed kept His promise of the Holy Spirit to all who believe.  

You all, like me, are tempted to dwell solely upon the things that face you today. 

My body's aches and pains, pull my mind away from rational thought. 
My life in the world pulls my thoughts away from God's Word and His Truth. 
My mind, and yours, cannot truly be trusted.  Without the Spirit we can indeed deceive ourselves as to what is important. More often than not we are victims of ourselves. 

Jesus gave many examples of workers in the harvest. Of those in the King’s employ.  We will be tempted to the things of this world to keep us from that work. 

We will be tempted to think only of ourselves. Self preservation is strong. 
We are drawn to handing our worship to other things. We are drawn to bettering ourselves rather than to consider others. We are easily deceived into putting ourselves first. 

Just as Jesus is the only way, the only truth and the only life, there's only one way to live for Christ.  Letting go is the hardest part for me and probably you. We get so easily distracted by world events. By this happening or that happening. We focus too easily on disappointment rather than the reasons God gives to be happy in Jesus. 

So What are You Doing? Are you as Paul describes keeping your eyes focused on the prize above?  

You can have everything in this life that is considered good, and in 1 breath, lose it all.

You do not decide when your last day on Earth will be. God does. 
It matters not if you are a Christian or not. In any given moment millions wake up in either Heaven or Hell. All the time. Those who have put their faith and trust in Christ Jesus alone for salvation find themselves at peace in Heaven.  Those who have trusted in anything else wake to a new experience of torment and pain in Hell. Paying for the sins of their lives because they refused to let Jesus pay for them. All who die without salvation in Christ end up in Hell. 

As one once said, all the world's religions lead to Hell. Only one relationship leads to Heaven. 

Regarding this day, are you bent on living for yourself or for Jesus?  Are you going to be about what God has in mind for you or are you going to continue in rebellion?  

Indeed your life is what you make of it, either its going to lead you to Jesus Christ or it will lead you away.  You choose. You. You decide and remember that breath of yours is a gift to give you just one more chance to get life right before Christ Jesus. 

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Patience and Prayers

Patience and Prayers 

Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another. JAMES 5:16 The ancient historian Eusebius portrayed James as a Nazarite, an Israelite wholly devoted to God (Numbers 6:1–23), whose times of prayer for his nation were frequent and prolonged. Most of us find it very hard to identify with a man like James. Who do we know who prays so much that he develops knots on his knees? Perhaps the better question might be, “Who do we know who prays—really prays?” That’s not an unfair question, nor is it calculated to instill guilt. It reflects the surveys that have been taken by both Christian and secular researchers. It seems Christians today are too busy to pray! One of the New Testament’s strongest passages on prayer is contained in James’s final words to his fellow Jewish believers. In James 5:7–12, the word for patience is used seven times. In this passage, the word for prayer occurs seven times. When patience is required, prayer is the key. - Dr. David Jeremiah Morning and Evening 

Consider what Dr. Jeremiah has said. 

In reading through my devotionals and my Bible, this hymn came to mind: 

And can it be that I should gain
An int’rest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

’Tis mystery all! The Immortal dies!
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love Divine!
’Tis mercy all! let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.
’Tis mercy all! let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.

He left His Father’s throne above,
So free, so infinite His grace;
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race:
’Tis mercy all, immense and free;
For, O my God, it found out me.
’Tis mercy all, immense and free;
For, O my God, it found out me.

Long my imprisoned spirit lay
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quickening ray,
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.

No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him, is mine!
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness Divine,
Bold I approach the eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.
Bold I approach the eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

Prayers can do more to take your worries off of you and place them with whom can actually do something about them. 

Yesterday I took a beating in getting through the day. Was very rough from just past midnight with thunderstorms and a nearby lightning strike, to a problem with the company's alert system going off accidentally, to constant issues at work. A lack of good sleep wrecked havoc with my mind and my patience. 

Prayers get us, get me, through life. When answers don't come as fast as I would like, I keep praying. Daniel experienced delays and God put his example in the book of Daniel for a reason. Spiritual warfare exists, God's answers are often delayed due to the unseen enemy of God who doesn't want us receiving those answers...thus requiring patience. 

The Bible specifically mentions fervent prayer. You walk with Jesus as you ought to and you pray as often as you can breathe. Not giving up until or unless you are specifically shown that the answer is no. 

Perspective and Priorities...

And can it be that I should gain
An int’rest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

Look at what the hymn writer says. He died for me who caused His pain. 
For me.  He went to the cross to die for me.
To us it ought to bring about gratitude. Not selfish desires or ambitions. 

Consider Ephesians 2:1-10  "And you were dead in your offenses and sins, in which you previously walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.  Among them we too all previously lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our wrongdoings, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the boundless riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

That passage in Ephesians stood out to me this morning because of that line...Among them we too all previously lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind.  To be in prayer is to indeed set your minds on things above and not necessarily the things of this world. Patience in prayer means staying focused. 

To win a war or win the prize as Paul wrote, you have to remain focused. 
To run off after things on a whim is to be like an undisciplined child. To focus on what only makes you happy isn't going to help those God brings into your day, your mind, to pray for. 

Nobody in their right mind will thoroughly enjoy rigorous training. It's hard, it's difficult, it can easily lead to discomfort, discouragement, loss of self, loss of time, loss of many things. Yet we are called to learn to be an obedient Disciple. To learn what it means to obey, of what to reject from our lives.  How to make what's important to God to be important to us. 

Prayer is key in adjusting our minds to what God is thinking. We cannot give up because of the effort required. We cannot give up because of the lack of visible results. 

I have several people that I pray for whom I may never see the results from those prayers. But I pray anyway. I pray for those whom I know are trapped in sin. Who are certainly being held captive by demons.  Jesus forewarned that those kinds of demons only come out through prayer. So I am compelled to not give up. Jesus didn't give up on me. 

Prayer should go hand in hand with your Bible reading. As Spurgeon said to someone one is as important as the other. One is breathing in the other is breathing out. 

Are you indulging in the desires of your flesh and mind more than you are in your obedience to Christ?  Are you at all concerned about those whom He puts on your mind to pray for, or is success in this life more important to you?

Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

The Battlefield...Within...

The Battlefield...Within 

Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control. 2 PETER 1:5–6 

Most of us would agree that when it comes to the battle for the right kind of living, the biggest enemy is not out there. The biggest enemy is right here—ourselves. That’s why the principle of self-control is so very vital. It is that quality that makes it possible to achieve the goals God has set before us. In the Greek, the word temperance is kratain. It means “to grab hold of, to grasp.” I believe it’s the concept from which we get the idiom “Get hold of yourself,” which we use when we’re talking to someone who is getting too emotional. The word is used only seven times in the New Testament. In almost every situation, it is used to describe the importance of gaining control and reigning over our passions and desires. The matter of self-control is a battle fought in the mind. The mind controls the passions. The battle is fought in the world of thought. There is no conflict so severe as the conflict one goes through to subdue oneself. I’d like to suggest that the best way to deal with the struggle for control over your thoughts and passions is focusing your mind upon Jesus Christ. - Dr. David Jeremiah Morning and Evening 

How often have you stopped to consider your thinking?
What you think about. Why you think about that which you do?
Why you accepted what you have believed? 

The things you are passionate about, so why are you so passionate about them?
Are your passions God-honoring?  Meaning do they bring honor to God?

Are the things that excite you God honoring? 

In this world our battlefield is in the mind. It's not our blood pumping organ. It's only metaphorically speaking in the heart.

When Adam and Eve sinned they struggled greatly with the new concept they instigated of soul and spirit. God knows the division of that in all who have lived and do live and will ever live. Their sin made them want to hide. They believed that it was something to be seen. Guilt is something to be seen. Only confession can aid in removing it.

Your mind is indeed a dangerous battlefront in your life. We are taught in the Bible to guard our thoughts. To take every thought captive.  We are basically told to be alert!  Why? Because Satan is compared to that of a roaring lion seeking someone to devour. 

We are being told in no uncertain terms that its a dangerous place!

You can set yourself up for failure by not taking the Scriptures seriously. I know for a fact that this much is true. 

I, like you, am my own worst enemy. 

I do myself the most damage by not even trying to rein in my thoughts.  Try is better to be silent and thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. Abraham Lincoln was attributed with saying it, and it's said he based that on something from Proverbs. 
Proverbs 17:28 "Even a fool, when he keeps silent, is considered wise. When he closes his lips, he is considered prudent.".

We often find ourselves wanting to get go somewhere where we don't have to think. 

I have often said that thinking as much as I do just gets me into trouble. 

Your mind is a dangerous place. In the life of a believer it was Christ who burst through the darkness of our minds to show the light of truth that saved us. Those who haven't believed are still in that darkness. The Bible says that those in that darkness...their deeds are evil. 

You and I must wrestle with our thoughts. It's not easy!

We in our single mindedness cannot fathom the ramifications of where our thoughts can take us. It can take us straight into idolatry and we wouldn't be aware of it. It can take us into any of a number of sins and convince us its ok. We need to compare what we think with how God thinks of those things. 

In our own power and strength we can't do it. The sin nature doesn't want us seeing the truth. We have to rely on the Spirit of Truth, which is the Spirit of God, to show us what we can't bring ourselves to know or understand. 

Our minds will deceive us.  We can easily be any of the Churches Paul wrote to in our behavior. We can easily be the 7 Churches Jesus wrote to in the book of Revelation. Having forgot our first love. 

Consider the hard truth of your thoughts today. Consider what you have allowed yourself to fall victim to.  As long as you are breathing there's hope to live in obedience to Christ Jesus. 

Monday, September 27, 2021

Being a Believer...the Reality

Being a Believer...the Reality 

Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7 

As you’ve no doubt discovered, becoming a Christian does not make your problems go away. But it does give you an Advocate to whom you can take every concern. The Christians Peter addressed were facing persecution. They did not know whom they could trust; a friend, a neighbor, or even a family member could betray them, resulting in suffering and even death. But Peter had walked with the risen Christ, and he had personally experienced the love that Jesus had for His followers. He knew that Christ was in control, capable of handling every trial and that He wanted to do so as an expression of His love. Casting our cares is a choice. It means consciously handing over our anxiety to Christ and allowing Him to carry the weight of our problems. At times this is the most difficult part of trusting God! We don’t like turning over the responsibility for our problems. We have been taught that self-reliance is good and praiseworthy. We may even enjoy worrying. Yet if we are to be freed from the burden of our concerns, we must choose to cast them into the strong hands of our Father. Peter does not distinguish between little cares and big cares. God does not differentiate between problems we should handle on our own and God-sized needs. He asks us to turn them all over to Him. One of our greatest errors is to assume we can deal with something ourselves, only to discover that we really can’t. God sees you as His frail child, burdened with a load that surpasses your strength. He stands prepared to take your load and to carry it for you. Will you let Him?  - Blackaby Experiencing God Day by Day 

Hope...something most in this world would confess they need and want more than anything else. 

Adam and Eve, after making the first sin in mankind, didn't know what to do. They couldn't fathom the sense of loss of hope. They had no understanding of a separation of the physical world and the spiritual world. A great divide had come that they couldn't explain. A great marring of their existence that they were sure that they could not hide from the Lord Jesus.
For the first time ever that lacked peace. They now craved hope.

You might not think of that first sin in that same way, but then again, I am only the Scribe here- here to write what I am told to write. 

Adam and Eve now understood the darkness of sin and they struggled with figuring out how to hide.  Much as we still do today. When we sin the last thing on our minds, most of the time, is to be found out. 

Hope in anything or anyone else in this world will be a hollow pursuit. A chasing after the wind, as it were. It's in vain, will cost us more than had ever crossed our minds. 

Those in Hell are gaining an understanding of the wages of sin. They are gaining an understanding of the penalty involved with rejection of Christ Jesus for salvation. 

We who are alive and remain until our time is either up, or Christ Jesus returns, really can't fathom the grievousness of the offense of sin. 


We, who are in Christ, those who have come to Jesus, who are born again, are reborn into a living hope.  We find that which Adam and Eve sought out.

Our lives will still have valleys and mountains. We still will face hardships and joy. To deal with sin in our lives until such a time as happens to all that we leave behind this sinful body and put on Christ in Heaven. Awaiting either the day of His return to be joined to a glorified body or have it happen at His return. 

In Christ we have access to a peace and a hope the world cannot find.  The key is to remain in Christ Jesus. To keep putting off the old self, putting on the new self. Letting go of the things of this world that draw us away from that right relationship with Jesus. 

The Reality of the Believer has in it a rejection of what plans that the god of this world has for us.  We cannot embrace what's important to Satan and what's important to God. 

We have to acknowledge that which God says is dangerous. 
We have to change how we think in this life. 

Our hope is found only in Christ Jesus. Not in a President, King, or any business or leadership found in the world. 

Our Bible says to build upon the Rock. There's only 1. This isn't multiple choice. 
The Bible says in Ephesians about the whole armor of God. Meaning this... is...war.

Those who have gone through enlistment in an armed service know the reality of being forced to learn how to think differently. You dress differently. You prepare for each day differently. You are being trained on how to obey orders. On how to not only survive in the battlefield, but how to obey orders and advance in that battlefield. In a war there are very few civilians. First questions asked of any who are found in that battlefield are along the lines of "friend or foe?".

You are either in Christ or not. There's no salvation for those who love to be warmed by being near to those who have the light of Christ but will not commit to Him. 

There's no hope in this world to make it a better place. It's a sin cursed world. 
When Adam and Eve sinned this world was the first to be punished.

You who are in Christ have access to hope.  You have a Mediator. You have an Advocate. You have a Teacher to teach you in how to live the Christian life.  You must choose to live as you are being taught. You must let go of what you embrace in the world. To take up your own cross means to do just that. 

The old hymn does say it well...I is Well 

When peace like a river, attendeth my way
When sorrows like sea billows roll
Whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say
It is well, it is well, with my soul
It is well
With my soul
It is well, it is well with my soul
Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come
Let this blest assurance control
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate
And hath shed His own blood for my soul
It is well (it is well)
With my soul (with my soul)
It is well, it is well with my soul
My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, o my soul!
It is well (it is well)
With my soul (with my soul)
It is well, it is well with my soul
It is well (it is well)
With my soul (with my soul)
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Sunday, September 26, 2021

God, Our Father, Has Had ENOUGH...

God, Our Father, Has Had ENOUGH 
By David Brenneman 

This morning, even before I had been fully awake, I was burdened with a message to write.  

God will indeed have had enough of humanities sinful, evil ways. 

But you say this isn't possible! God is love, and in that you can't have God also being so angry, so frustrated, that He would exclaim "ENOUGH! I am DONE! NO More!".

My Dear Reader, to both the Believer and those who haven't yet decided to follow Jesus, oh the truth is harder than the lie you might be living.  There's no devotional that I will be writing in conjunction with today. I can still only write that which the Spirit directs me to write. As I have often stated, I am a writer, but I of myself, am not good enough to express or explain that which I am directed to write. 

Jesus told a parable of the seeds.  He further had to explain this even to His Disciples. 
The seeds are the Word of God. Planted in the hearts of mankind. Looking at Scripture again it also says that to each was given a measure of faith. Everyone has been born with the ability to believe in God, and the ability to receive Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord. The Cross of Christ created the choice to receive it or reject it. You can let that measure of faith bring you to Jesus or turn away from Him.

Let's be clear on what Salvation is. It's a person coming to Christ, relying entirely on His redemptive work on the cross to be saved. Then living life for Him afterwards in accordance with the Word of God. 

Romans 10:9-10 "that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation."

Once saved there ought to be change in a person's life, the turning away from sin, not turning towards it. 

Galatians 5:14-24 "For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but serve one another through love. For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, take care that you are not consumed by one another.

But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the desire of the flesh is against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, in order to keep you from doing whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law. Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: sexual immorality, impurity, indecent behavior, idolatry, witchcraft, hostilities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus crucified the flesh with its passions and desires."

Oh so many people professing to be Christians, even those who claim only belief in God, in this world, are EMBRACING sin, thinking that it will "be ok", that God will understand. That somehow the good will outweigh the bad.  My Friend, it doesn't work that way. 

Read Galatians 5 again. Chew on it for a while. Those things were and are a part of humanity since Adam and Eve. But you said that God has had enough! 

A life truly given to Christ will bear fruit in regards to repentance. The turning away and going the opposite direction FROM sin.  A great deal of this world, for generations, has totally misunderstood what the Bible says about judging others. Jesus said we WILL know people by their fruits. You WILL and ARE EXPECTED to view people, to make decisions concerning them by their fruits.  Within the Church there's something called Church Discipline. It's found in part in the book of Matthew.  

Matthew 18:16-20 “Now if your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that on the testimony of two or three witnesses every matter may be confirmed. And if he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, he is to be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.

“Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven. For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.”

"We're still waiting for the God has had enough" part.

Read on.  In the Gospels Jesus said that the Father has set a day for the return of Jesus.

Matthew 24:36-46 "“But about that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone. For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be. At that time there will be two men in the field; one will be taken and one will be left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one will be left.

 “Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming. But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into. For this reason you must be ready as well; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will.

“Who then is the faithful and sensible slave whom his master put in charge of his household slaves, to give them their food at the proper time? Blessed is that slave whom his master finds so doing when he comes."

History and indeed God's Word says that there is a time when God has had enough. 

Isaiah 1:10-17  

"Hear the word of the Lord, You rulers of Sodom! Listen to the instruction of our God You people of Gomorrah!

“What are your many sacrifices to Me?”
Says the Lord.
“I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams
And the fat of fattened cattle;
And I take no pleasure in the blood of bulls, lambs, or goats.
When you come to appear before Me,
Who requires of you this trampling of My courtyards?
Do not go on bringing your worthless offerings,
Incense is an abomination to Me.
New moon and Sabbath, the proclamation of an assembly—
I cannot endure wrongdoing and the festive assembly.
I hate your new moon festivals and your appointed feasts,
They have become a burden to Me;
I am tired of bearing them.
So when you spread out your hands in prayer,
I will hide My eyes from you;
Yes, even though you offer many prayers,
I will not be listening.
Your hands are covered with blood.

“Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean;
Remove the evil of your deeds from My sight.
Stop doing evil,
Learn to do good;
Seek justice,
Rebuke the oppressor,
Obtain justice for the orphan,
Plead for the widow’s case"

God has said quite equivocally that enough is enough. 

When indeed Christ returns, and He will, within minutes of the Rapture of the Church, of those who truly put their faith and trust in Christ Jesus alone for salvation, Churches everywhere will be filling up with billions of grief stricken people. People who were not saved who only thought they were because they did not mean it when they said it. Of those billions many who loved the idea of being close to God but had never confessed Him as Lord and Savior, will only begin to realize that their good wasn't good enough.  

To come to Christ for salvation requires belief, it requires faith, it requires obedience to God in the power of the Spirit of God.  It's not about getting a ticket to get out of Hell and living as though nothing was ever done in regards to salvation. 

When we come to Christ our lives SHOULD change. Read this, because too many don't believe it's in the or that it was said. 

James 2:19 "You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder."

Hell is a place RESERVED for those who have rejected Christ Jesus. Who chose not to receive Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord. It's not a place where Satan rules from. Even he and his demons do NOT want to be there. The demons who are there are under the same punishment as the unbeliever who is present there. They cannot leave. 

You, my Dear Reader, both the Believer and those who haven't believed yet need to know and understand that the day is set, it has been decided by God the Father, for when Jesus is to return. 

The Bible isn't fairy tales or made up stories. You live in a world with almost instant access to information. Look up the millions of pieces of archeological findings that prove the Bible. Prove what has happened so far. If God has proven that much of it, you can be sure the rest will be true.  

The Book of Daniel opens the door about the End Times. The Book of Revelation spells out what will transpire after that "ENOUGH!" day arrives.  

You must know Christ as your own Savior if you are to be saved from that wrath to come. 

You must live life as if that is true in your life, as Scripture says, focusing on the things above, not on the things of this world. Telling others about Christ. Inviting them to come and see for themselves. 

Billions will be grief stricken after they see the evidence of the Rapture of the Church. 

The governments of the world will craft a lie about what had happened, because Satan's puppet the AntiChrist, a man who will be in place to be a worshiped world leader will perpetuate that lie.

Your only hope is to be right with God in the here and now.  

Turning away from the lies of Satan to the living hope found only in Christ Jesus. 

God has said it, and that day is fast approaching of the Father exclaiming "ENOUGH!".

Saturday, September 25, 2021

By Way of Troubles

By Way of Troubles 

Let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

Now for a little while, if need be, I have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of my faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ. I glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. It is good that I should hope and wait quietly for Your salvation, Lord God. I have a better and an enduring possession for myself in heaven. So I do not cast away my confidence, which has great reward. For I have need of endurance, so that after I have done Your will, Lord God, I may receive the promise. My Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and You, my God and Father, who have loved me and given me everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort my heart. 

Thank You for reminding me that You, Almighty God, are in charge, that trials are not pointless, and that eternal rewards await. 

JAMES 1:4; 1 PETER 1:6–7; ROMANS 5:3–4; LAMENTATIONS 3:26; HEBREWS 10:34–36; 2 THESSALONIANS 2:16–17
Dr. David Jeremiah Life-Changing Moments with God 

For me, to look back on the last 8 months is to see so many hills, valleys and mountains that I have traveled and can only say that it's been harrowing. It's honestly been incredibly intense at times.  Going into days not knowing what in the world I would be doing that day.

It took God,  and yes its a work in progress, much time investing in me to get me to let go of pre-planned days. It's daunting. 

It's certainly caused my prayers to include prayers that ask Him for His help in doing whatever He puts before me. 

Trials have been daily and weekly.  They have been rougher than I have ever wanted them to be. 

In every single one though they have been difficult, He has been there. Either a silent presence with His arms around me or softly telling me which way to go. 

All of 2020 wasn't nearly like 2021 has been for me, if that tells you anything. 

God's taken this blog into countries that I have never thought possible. Been viewed over 83,000 times. My prayers are always that someone, somewhere, comes to Christ through it.
That maybe someone turns back to Christ through it.

God leads my writing of each post until the proper time that He chooses to end each one.  I am not some scholarly teacher. I have no theological degree. I simply want to be useful to my Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. To be obedient in what I am called to do. To speak upon whatever He knows someone needs to hear. 

The trials of life indeed are compared as the Bible says to a refiners fire. Hot enough to draw out impurities but not so hot that it ruins the finished product. 

You may also be going through some rough times in your life. In Christ we are never alone. 

It may seem like it but we aren't.  God isn't silent in the life of the Believer if their heart is in the right place, listening for the voice of the Great Shepherd. 

We aren't called to be extremists, we are called to be obedient. We are to be Christ to a world that is perishing. 

My mind is ever thinking on a wide variety of things. On one hand I am here now writing of this, at the same time I think of things yet to be done today. Am thinking about hopes and dreams. Am thinking about ideas yet in infancy in my mind. Am thinking about things that I would love to do, to see, to experience. Yet knowing also the reality is God’s Will, will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven. That the signs of our time point to the imminent return of Jesus Christ. That while there's stuff yet to be done before me, that thought presses home the urgency to keep calling out to this world to come to Christ before its too late. 

I also share in Paul's inner turmoil. The pressures to keep on doing what's in front of me to do and at the same time I long for that first of many embraces from Jesus in Heaven. 

Are you at all undecided about Christ Jesus and being saved?  My friend, I can tell you that I have no regrets of coming to Jesus to be saved. His love has been evident long before He saved me and only continues as the days go by. Rough days or not He walks with me, leading me through every thorny ordeal. Every rough patch. Every joyful and sad experience that I go through. 

Jesus lived and died according to the Scriptures. 
Jesus was crucified and rose again on the 3rd day according to the Scriptures. 
He made a way where there was no way for mankind to be saved. 
The gift of God, salvation in Christ Jesus alone, is free for all who ask.

I am facing this particular Saturday with an uneasy heart, not knowing what the day will hold.
Nothing to point to other than being told to hold on. As far as I am aware this day just has errands to run in it. Prayer is where I go to next in situations like this. Prayer takes my worries and concerns to my Savior to deal with. 

He is kept in perfect peace whose mind is set on the Lord. 

Friday, September 24, 2021

What's Set Before Me

What's Set Before Me 

The LORD our God spoke to us in Horeb, saying: “You have dwelt long enough at this mountain.” DEUTERONOMY 1:6 

We will never be the people God wants us to be if we don’t spend time with Him. Every one of us needs some time on a spiritual mountain with God, but He does not set people free to remain on a mountain. After all, any mountaintop encounter we have with God is not merely for our encouragement; it is also intended to strengthen us for battle. Victories are ultimately not won by extended worship times on the mountaintop, but by going into battle and fulfilling God’s purposes for our lives. Some people are tempted to take up permanent residence on their spiritual mountaintop, but that makes them unavailable for God’s service—and they don’t experience fresh spiritual victories. Other believers neglect their time with God in order to rush into the next battle for Him. These people inevitably experience humiliating defeat. During certain seasons throughout our lives and even at occasional points in our week, we need to withdraw from life’s battles. At other times we need to leave the mountain and advance on the enemy. God knows which you ought to be doing. Be sure you are seeking His will and obeying His call. - Blackaby Being Still With God 

In recent days life has been weirdly intense.  It's been so intense that I often wondered what in the world was I doing?  That which was set before me.  I have said that to several this week. 

I know not what I am to do each day at work. My prayers include asking His help for what He sets before me. 

I am a mental and physical multitasking person. Many often get the wrong idea or impression about me due to that quirky behavior. I sometimes appear distracted, distant, angry, unemotional, or a slew of other emotions. It's just the way my mind works. God often gives me mental challenges that take hours, days, weeks,  months or years to resolve in my mind. 

This is on top of the worldly need to physically work. 

Setting our minds on things above and not on the things of this world isn't easy in a world full of sensory overloaded opportunities.  We, like that child in a toy store, even as adults, go into joy overload by everything in front of us.  We lose sight of that which God commands. 

When you think of this day in front of you, do you consider it at all or do you just go with the flow?

Ever consider what millions per day never do? That in a matter of minutes or hours this could be your last day on this Earth?
Ever consider what you have or have not done in your walk with Jesus?  What you will feel like if it is your last and you are standing before Him?
Ever consider the things that He says that are important in the life of the believer, and are you doing them?
Ever consider the reality that for all its wonderful things and wonders of life, in a matter of seconds, when Christ returns, every single person on this Earth will be impacted by both the removal of Believers and the beginning of the Judgments of God?

Is your mind at all ready to do what God puts before you or do you push it aside because it's not pleasant?

Is what's important to Jesus important to you?

Lots of questions but in reality it isn't. What are your priorities?  Are you spending time wisely? People get far more irritated at wasted money from some entertainment that wasn't what was expected than they do from time that can't be taken back. 

I am often torn, and Biblically speaking I probably shouldn't be, between what I set before me and what God does. 

I often wrongly listen to that wrong voice about what I have earned or deserve. Do you?
It's often in the voice of me, not of the Spirit. Pushing myself out of my comfort zone isn't easy nor is it pleasant. 

This last week we had a major network problem, by God’s design, I was thrust into the role of being the point person between the plant and Corporate IT. They had actually hung up on Management when they realized they were speaking to me. God got me through that.

God often will put us through things to prepare for and to defuse emotions before we get to them.   We have to be willing to obey. No you may not LIKE what He has you doing but it IS for you to be doing it.

Are you willingly obeying when He speaks to you or do you delay with hopes that He gives that job to someone else?  How will you stand before Him to explain why you did that?

We as Believers have a life to live in gratitude for what Jesus did to save us. We do not and are not granted the freedom to live as we please. The Disciples gave up their desires in life to devote themselves to what Jesus was going to teach them.  They agreed to go, do, and say, what He put before them. Jesus, in the Great Commission, commands us to make Disciples of all nations. To teach others about how to come to Christ and how to live for Christ. 

We read of several parables of workers in the Kings fields. Working in fields isn't exactly a joyous occupation. But it can be if done for the right reasons. Stories can be found easily enough of farmers helping farmers when physical health has prevented them from bringing in the crops. Doing their own work at their own farm plus that of their friends farm on top of that. 

The problem with kids in a toy store is eventually the happiness fades as they go from toy to toy. Then realize they have seen and done and their interest wanes. Adults are no different. We often see it as the grass being greener on the other side. 

Obedience is part of the Christian life. Of doing what God puts before us. Not staying where WE want to be but to move on to where He says is where we should be. 

Are your priorities right in your life?  Only you can compare how you live with what the Bible says you ought to be doing. Is your time spent wisely or do you waste much of it? 

When Christ DOES return, just what will He find you doing?

Thursday, September 23, 2021

Your Own If...

Your Own If...

Jesus said to him, “If you can believe . . .” Mark 9:23 NKJV 

A certain man had a demon-possessed son. The boy could neither speak nor hear. The father, having seen the disciples’ inability to heal his child, had little or no faith in Christ. So when he was called to bring his son to the Lord, he said to Jesus, “If You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us” (Mark 9:22 NKJV). Now there was an “if” in the question, but the poor trembling father had put it in the wrong place. Jesus, therefore, without forcing him to retract his statement, kindly put the “if” in its legitimate position. “No, really,” He seemed to say, “there should be no ‘if’ about my power or willingness . . . the ‘if’ lies somewhere else.” Jesus told the man, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes” (Mark 9:23 NKJV). The man’s trust was strengthened, and he offered a humble prayer for greater faith. At that point, Jesus spoke the word and the devil was cast out, with instructions never to return. There is a lesson here that we need to learn. Like this man, we often see that there is an “if” somewhere. But we always blunder by putting it in the wrong place: “if” Jesus can help me, “if” He can give me grace to overcome temptation, “if” He can pardon my sin, “if” He can make me successful. No, “if” you can believe, Jesus both can and will. You have misplaced your “if”! If you can trust with confidence, just as all things are possible to Christ, all things will be possible to you. Faith stands in God’s power and is robed in God’s majesty; it wears the royal clothing and rides on the King’s horse, for it is the grace the King delights to honor. Equipping itself with the glorious might of the all-working Spirit, faith becomes—in the omnipotence of God—mighty to do, to dare, and to suffer. All things, without limit, are possible to the one who believes. My soul, can you believe your Lord tonight. - C. H. Spurgeon Morning and Evening 

There was a moment in our lives about 20 years ago or so when God did something that really relates to this devotional with us.  We had an incident happen that really was an act of God. A storm had come through in the city where my Wife's house was and her former neighbors told her the gutters had come off of her house.  We were living in another city and had been renting out her home after we had first gotten married.  

In this incident we were in much prayer about what to do. Friends and family were called who lived closer than we did to see if they could help. 

Some time had passed and my Wife calls the former neighbor to talk about it only to hear from her that she had thought we had decided already and hadn't told them because they were fixed.  Fixed? Yes, a company had been to the house and put up new gutters.  She told her we hadn't called anyone. We were still looking for options. She said she would ask around.  We get a call a while later with her laughing. The company was supposed to have put those gutters on another house up the road. My Wife and I wanted to do the right thing and she asked her if she got the name of the company. She said no, the only thing she knew was that the slogan on the van said "Doing an Awesome job for an Awesome God".

We had plenty of if's in regards to what to do that day. We tried in earnest to find that company and make things right. 20 years later we still cannot locate that company. 

It's been a lesson to us about if's.  When we face some big things in life that seem to have no earthly answer, we remember the gutters. If God can put gutters on a house...

We have faced a great many things in 20 plus years of marriage that we go back to that lesson to get through. We still face situations where things don't make sense. We wonder how God's going to make things happen, and remember the gutters. 

God's Word isn't complicated. Salvation in Christ Jesus isn't complicated. The message of the Gospel isn't complicated. We complicate things by over thinking life. 

Faith in what God's doing often means we won't understand why.

We may never get told on this side of eternity. It may be after we settle into life in the new Heavens and new Earth that we get the opportunity to talk to Jesus about it.

Jesus gives us anchors to steady our lives. The Spirit is there to bring all things into remembrance that He has taught us.  You can probably look close enough at your life and find your if moment.  That time when God stepped into your life and strengthened your faith in Jesus Christ. 

Satan will throw whatever he can at your life to try to get you to forget your times when Jesus strengthened your faith.  The last thing he wants to do is have a believer's faith bolstered. 
It's why he roams about seeking someone to devour. He looks for weaknesses to expose. 

Your if can be for just you, or like gutters, sharing your if might be to help someone else. 

Lastly...listen. God does speak to you. If only My Sheep would hear My voice...He says. 
The hardest part for us is the same as it was for the Disciples in the boat in the storm. Being quiet and calm in the midst of the storm to listen for God’s voice. He speaks and the storm listens.

Write down your if, if that helps you to remember. As the Old Testament put it, bind it about your neck, keep it with you at all times. 

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Our Life His Life, His Reason to Save You

Our Life His Life, His Reason to Save You 

I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day. 1 CORINTHIANS 15:3–4 

Duncan McNeil, the Scottish evangelist, once said that in school he had a seminary professor who insisted on opening his theology classes with a question. No one could ever anticipate what the question would be. One day he said to his students, “Gentlemen, can someone give me a definition of the gospel?” A student rose and read John 3:16: “For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son so that anyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” The professor said, “That is a good gospel text, but it is not a definition of the gospel.” Another student read 1 Timothy 1:15: “How true it is, and how I long that everyone should know it, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—and I was the greatest of them all.” Again the professor declined to accept it; he waited for what he wanted. Finally, a student stood and read 1 Corinthians 15:3–5, much to the professor’s delight. It was evident that he had the reply he desired; he said, “Gentlemen, that is the gospel. Believe it, live it, preach it, and die for it if necessary.”

The excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord . . . PHILIPPIANS 3:8 

How can we get to know the holy God? If He is so pure, so infinite, so high, and so lifted up, how can we approach Him, and how can we grow more intimately acquainted with Him? First, we must come to Him by simple faith in Jesus Christ. Second, we must study our Bible and learn all we can about Him. Third, we must turn our knowledge about Him into knowledge of Him. How can we do that? In his book Knowing God, J. I. Packer gave the formula. “The rule for doing this,” wrote Packer, “is demanding but simple. It is that we turn each truth that we learn about God into a matter of meditation before God, leading to prayer and praise to God.” Packer defined meditation as “the activity of calling to mind, and thinking over, and dwelling on, and applying to oneself, the various things that one knows about the works and ways and purposes and promises of God.” It is this activity of holy thought, this practice and pattern of letting our minds dwell on Him, that helps us become more deeply and intimately acquainted with the Holy One, who is our life.  - Both from Dr. David Jeremiah Morning and Evening 

In that passage is the definition of the Gospel, the "Good News" to be told to a dying world. 
"I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day." 1 CORINTHIANS 15:3–4 

In the second devotional we see what such a person, who confesses their sin, and receives Salvation, is to do with their lives. It is not about money, wealth of any kind, of accolades, of success or any thing this earthly life can sway us to make important. 

In our lives, given to Christ Jesus, we live for the one who gave His all for us. We learn more about the one who would do such a thing as step in the way of that death sentence decreed against us. We live for what is and was important to Him.

Jesus Christ Himself is returning, and it's not going to be anything like that first time He was here.

Jesus issued the command to tell the world the Gospel message we read in 1 Corinthians 15:3-4.  His return in the beginning will be to provide glorified bodies to all who have already died in Christ Jesus since Adam and Eve. Second is to claim all who are alive and remain who have done the same.  They too will receive a glorified body. These are perfect bodies, free of defects and the curse of sin. 

Once these who believe are removed from the Earth, Judgment comes. The Bible refers to it as Daniel's 70th Week. It's spelled out in the book of Revelation.  

My Dear Reader, as you can see, the Gospel message isn't complicated. God did all the work. It is only upon us to believe, receive, and live to obey. 

At the other end of those 7 years of Judgment will be a thousand year reign of Jesus Christ Himself on this Earth.  People will have lived hundreds of years in full prosperity and peace.  Yet at the end of those years, when Satan is released once more, most all of mankind will side with him against Jesus. Jesus will just speak and the battle will be over. Then comes the Final Judgment of all mankind who would not accept the Gospel to themselves. 

Every single possible excuse will have been heard for refusing to believe. 
Every single person who has ever lived who has rejected Christ Jesus as their Savior will indeed receive a glorified body. Then they will be cast from the presence of God into the lake of fire. 

You have the chance in the here and now to listen, to turn your life around, repent as it were, and receive the free gift of Salvation. It's not found in any other way, no other religion in this world that has ever existed will save you from that Final Judgment. 

Your life is that precious to God that two are fighting over it.
Because Jesus wants to save it, Satan wants to destroy it. Satan wants the praise, honor and glory that belongs only to God. 

Jesus is the only way to be saved. "I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day." 1 CORINTHIANS 15:3–4 

He willingly died to save you, no matter how vulgar, disturbing, disgusting, revolting, humiliating, vile your sins, the things you have done in this life may have been or are.

Yes, it's hard to believe, but it's true. Paul, in his time before receiving Salvation, was trying to kill those who believed. The guy on the cross with Jesus was a thief. 

As long as you have the breath of life in you, there's hope to be saved by faith in Christ Jesus. 

Romans 10:9-10 NASB "that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation."

That's all there is to it. 

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

His Child, I am, Redeemed!

His Child, I am, Redeemed!

Don’t let me suffer the fate of sinners. Psalm 26:9 NLT 

Fear made David pray like this, for something whispered to his heart, “Maybe, after all, you will suffer the fate of the wicked.” That fear, though marred by unbelief, largely springs from a holy anxiety, one that arises from the memory of past sins. Even the pardoned person will occasionally ask, “What if, in the end, my sins are remembered after all—and I am left out of the catalog of the saved?” David thought over his present unfruitfulness—so little grace, so little love, so little holiness—and looking to the future, considered his weakness and the many temptations that besieged him. He feared that he would fall, and he became prey to the enemy. This sense of sin and present evil, the corruption that prevailed in his life, compelled him to pray in fear and trembling, Don’t let me suffer the fate of sinners. Dear reader, if you have prayed this prayer—and if the rest of Psalm 26 describes your character—you do not need to be afraid of suffering the fate of sinners. Do you have the two virtues David had, the outward walk of integrity and the inward trust of the Lord? Are you resting on Christ’s sacrifice, and can you surround the altar of God with humble hope? If so, rest assured—you will never suffer the fate of sinners, for that calamity is impossible. In the judgment, like is gathered to like: “First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn” (Matthew 13:30). If you are like God’s people, you will be with God’s people. You cannot be gathered with the wicked, for you have been bought at too high a price. Redeemed by the blood of Christ, you are His forever—and where He is, there His people must be. You are loved too much to be cast away with the reprobates. Can one who is dear to Christ perish? Impossible! Hell cannot hold you! Heaven claims you! Trust in your great Guarantor and do not fear! - C. H. Spurgeon Morning and Evening 

There was no way to read this devotional this morning without excitement in those words from that old hymn.

Redeemed, How I Love to Proclaim It! By Fanny Crosby 

Redeemed—how I love to proclaim it!
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed through His infinite mercy,
His child, and forever, I am. Redeemed, redeemed,
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed, redeemed,
His child, and forever, I am.

Redeemed and so happy in Jesus,
No language my rapture can tell;
I know that the light of His presence
With me doth continually dwell.

I think of my blessed Redeemer,
I think of Him all the day long;
I sing, for I cannot be silent;
His love is the theme of my song.

I know I shall see in His beauty
The King in whose way I delight;
Who lovingly guardeth my footsteps,
And giveth me songs in the night.

We live in a world where the world loves to cause detriment and excessive harm towards those who claim to be Christians.  There's reason for that. They, on the outside of God’s plan and protection, cannot see what we do in the light of Jesus Christ. 

They are in the darkness and cannot understand the things of God because they are spiritually discerned.  The make arrogant presumptions against those they see when in truth they lift a fist at the God they do not see.

Was reading in Ecclesiastes again today. The great equalizer to all is death. To the righteous man and those who are not. One second after you die you end up where your choice in this life takes you. 

For those who chose to come to Christ for salvation, they find themselves in the presence of Jesus, being welcomed home to the place prepared for them.

For those who chose to refuse that plan of God to save them, seeking some other way, they are escorted by Him to Hell.

Look closer at the two who were on the cross with Jesus. Both died on their crosses. Both ended up in Sheol\Hades. Both are unsure what to expect. One appears with Jesus in Sheol. One looks at Him from painful torment in Hades. The unrepentant one no longer can change his eternity. The repented one will soon leave with Jesus. Of all those who greeted Jesus, I have to believe Jesus sought him out to keep His word from the cross. 

Are you among the redeemed? Are you able to claim the name of Jesus as your personal Savior?  

Do you?  If so then His Child, and forever, you are.

If you are still undecided, still are in doubt, or maybe still cannot believe, you my friend will spend an eternity separated from God in a very unpleasant way. Paying for the sins of your life. Only in Christ Jesus are those sins cleansed, removed, remembered no more.

In the court of God, the Believer has Jesus Christ as their Advocate. His Father is the Ultimate Judge.  Everyone that claims Jesus as their Savior through faith, He defends. He's never lost a case. Those who try to defend themselves always lose, always receive a guilty verdict. 

Only the blood of Christ cleanses all sin from a person's heart and soul.  

The world may rage, but it will be silenced. 
You, like Paul describes of his own life, may face persecution. 
But His Child and forever you are, if you are in Christ Jesus. 

The two thieves.  One, safe and at peace with Jesus forever, the other separated until the Final Judgment of all who have ever lived. In that day everyone in Hell\Hades will stand for a brief period before Jesus Christ as their Judge. Billions upon billions of people. They will receive a glorified body. Then the sentence of guilty. Guilty of not being found in the Lamb's book of Life. Their sentence is to be cast into the lake of fire. 

Jesus still stands before you, Dear Reader, with His arms wide open. 

Some of you need to come back to Him to restore your relationship with Jesus. 
Some of you need to come to Jesus for the first time to be saved. 
You cannot do enough to save yourself. God determined at the judgment against Adam and Eve that Jesus would have to be the sacrifice to save mankind.

The caveat is that you must come in faith and ask for His forgiveness. Ask to be saved and to proclaim Him to be your Savior and Lord of your life. To live for Jesus, the one who saved you. 

Redeemed and so happy in Jesus,
No language my rapture can tell;
I know that the light of His presence
With me doth continually dwell.

I think of my blessed Redeemer,
I think of Him all the day long;
I sing, for I cannot be silent;
His love is the theme of my song.

Monday, September 20, 2021

Being Where God's Working in You

Being Where God's Working in You 

You have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise. HEBREWS 10:36 

When we have trials in our lives, we always have three choices: We can endure our trials. Of course, some people make us endure their trials with them. We ask them how they’re doing, and they’re more than happy to tell us. But when we merely endure our troubles, we run the risk of becoming bitter. We can just escape. Run! Leave! Get out of there! When we do that, we get away from where we are. But if God hasn’t told us to leave, we leave the place where God can help us. We can enlist our troubles. This is the right thing to do. In other words, we can let God use the crises in our lives to make us better, to help us grow in His way. We can step up on our trouble and move to a higher level. We all have a natural “flight syndrome” that causes us to think, If I could just run away! But when we do that, if we’re not careful, we make matters worse instead of better. No matter how difficult our circumstances, the safest place for us is always in the will of God. - Dr. David Jeremiah Morning and Evening 

We often indeed give in to "flight syndrome" as Dr. Jeremiah put it. 

In all honesty I have done that more times than I can recall. 

In 1999 I had come to a place of something similar. Of which comes close to what he speaks to here. 

I had no where to run to, as far as fleeing goes.  I felt worn out, and at the end of me.
I was to the point of looking at how to end the misery so consuming me that I contemplated suicide.  I really believe that the "messenger of Satan" that afflicted Paul wasn't to do with his eyes, but his mind. As I was taught concerning God's Word, so should you keep in mind, read the verses before where you are reading and after...get the context and content right.

We often really don't give God our full attention until adversity is in our lap. 

We often disregard the wisdom of King Solomon in the book of Ecclesiastes. All the things that are striving after the wind. Seeking self pleasure, seeking after riches, seeking out the good life rather than seeking what's important to God that we aren't paying attention to. 

In my case I was having to choose between three options. End it all, let it continue down the dark road that I was on, or turn and let God do whatever was necessary in His eyes for me. 

We all too often want the easy way out. 

We don't want conflict. We don't want the things that even God brings into our lives that are meant to change us to be more like Christ. 

We listen too much to the plethora of voices in this world about all its opportunities and miss that still small voice of God. 

In Isaiah, God chose to visit while Isaiah was in the temple. I can only imagine his emotions as a messenger of God brings a firey hot coal from the Alter and touches his lips with it.  The knowledge of what was picked up, how it was being carried was right there in front of him. The knowledge of what was about to happen not real until it did happen. He didn't run or flee.
Not that I will get into it, but notice the place the coal touched was his lips.

We live in a time when the pleasures of this world are used as ransom in order to control people. Satan's not changed his plans. He's restrained in his plans by the Holy Spirit but has not changed them.  Plans that include the world worshipping him and not God. 

We will always face challenges and face things in life that are unpleasant to say the least. 

We will face things that we want to run from. God says to stay where you are in the center of His will for you. When you get insistent on leaving that place don't be surprised that He lets you go.  There in is the story of the Prodigal Son. 

Was also reading this morning of how we have a limited amount of time in this life and that the only right thing to do is live it the way God intended you to live it.  All else is futility in striving after the wind.  Yes, also from Ecclesiastes. 

We always will be distracted by the things of this world, from politics to religion, to family and to work. 

Distracted by all the things that will, in reality, only disrupt only one battlefield.  

Your mind.

You, if you are indeed saved, and are indeed taking up your own cross and are following Christ, should have a singleness of purpose.  Obeying Christ in what He has for you to do. To tell others about salvation in Christ Jesus.  To become His Disciples, to teach others how to be His Disciples. 

If you aren't saved, your world is probably pretty complicated. Probably filled with worries and stress. Filled with anxiety.  Filled with things that you can't or won't share with others.  But it comes down to its just you. You would flee if you could. But you know, deep down, that it would still be happening elsewhere. So you strive to survive the day. 

In Christ we have hope because in all the things we suffer and go through, Jesus has been there, done that. To stay in the center of His will brings peace that the world will never know outside of a right relationship with Jesus. 

You who read this are not alone. That's another of Satan's lies to manipulate. Making you think nobody else in history is going through what you are. Go back to Ecclesiastes. There's nothing new under the sun.  Technology is nothing new. It existed before the Flood of the book of Genesis. Technology does not bring new temptations or challenges. The same temptations in your life and mine have existed since Adam and Eve. 

Choosing to be obedient is just that, a choice. Choosing to obey the call of God for salvation is a choice. Choosing to endure what lessons Jesus has in mind for you is your choice. The thing to remember is you are His workmanship. You might put off that lesson, but you will still face it again. Have been there done that. 

Sunday, September 19, 2021

Reality of Hell, Not What You Want it to Be.

Reality of Hell, Not What You want it to Be 

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Isaiah 5:20 

It is Satan's practice to convince people that what God calls good is actually evil and what God declares evil is, in fact, good. Satan persuaded Adam and Eve that their disobedience, rather than their obedience, would guarantee a full life. They believed him and immediately began to experience sin's consequences! Despite the absurdity of Satan's logic, he continues to deceive people into doubting what God has clearly said. King Saul sought Samuel's affirmation for the sacrifice he had offered, even though he had acted in direct disobedience to God's command (1 Sam. 15:13). Ananias and Sapphira expected praise from the early church for their offering, though they were blatantly lying (Acts 5:1–11). An Amalekite soldier sought David's gratitude for killing Saul, God's anointed king (2 Sam. 1:1–16). We, too, will face the temptation to call something good that God has declared wicked. We may be persuaded that we can accomplish more good by lying than by telling the truth. We may claim that we are mobilizing Christians to pray for someone in sin when, in fact, we are spreading gossip. We may assert that we are following God's will in our job when, in fact, we are striving to pursue our own ambitions. We will also be tempted to call evil that which God declares is good. God says it is good to love our enemies, yet we might decide our task is to hold them responsible for their actions. It is so important to hold ourselves accountable to God's Word. God does not need us to find exceptions for His commands. He requires our obedience.  - Blackaby Experiencing God Day by Day 

I grew up in the 70's and 80's. Had lots of those who were my peers going on about what they would enjoy about Hell. About the drinking, and partying they would be doing. That those 'famous' rock stars sang about. Sex, drugs, and drinking. Living it up in the afterlife with nobody to tell them its wrong. 

Was reading a post yesterday that someone wrote and it horrified me. If anything it provoked me to a form of probably righteous anger.  Lying about Hell and at the same time lying about my God. 

This is an excerpt from that post: 

Why is hell so awful? One it was created for Satan and his demons. Secondly because people don’t realize that hell is the absence of God. the reason why there’s no air in hell it’s because God is a breath of life. There is no peace in hell because God is the prince of peace. There is no comfort in hell because God is the comforter. There is no love in hell because God is love. Hell is darkness because God is the light. What people don’t realize is on earth they get to experience a lot of the good qualities of God, they of course get to experience bad things on earth as well. If they do not choose God on earth they do not get to experience his goodness in eternity. Hell is total separation from God. So if you like the beautiful things on earth you should choose God because that’s who God is. God doesn’t send people to hell. He wishes none should perish. But we are already headed there if we do not have Jesus. God made a way to keep us from going there, we just have to accept and choose that free gift. Choose Jesus. 

The Reality of Hell, spoken by Jesus Christ Himself, goes directly against what this person wrote. 

God is omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent.  Perfect and everywhere at once. Holy in His perfect self, Creator of everything.  

Luke 16:19-31 "Now there was a rich man, and he habitually dressed in purple and fine linen, enjoying himself in splendor every day. And a poor man named Lazarus was laid at his gate, covered with sores, and longing to be fed from the scraps which fell from the rich man’s table; not only that, the dogs also were coming and licking his sores. Now it happened that the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s arms; and the rich man also died and was buried. And in Hades he raised his eyes, being in torment, and *saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his arms. And he cried out and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me and send Lazarus, so that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool off my tongue, for I am in agony in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your life you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus bad things; but now he is being comforted here, and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set, so that those who want to go over from here to you will not be able, nor will any people cross over from there to us.’ And he said, ‘Then I request of you, father, that you send him to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—in order that he may warn them, so that they will not come to this place of torment as well.’ But Abraham *said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ But he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent!’ But he said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’”

To go into everything that is wrong with that person's views would take much more time than it's worth.  In all Spiritual things, go to the Scriptures. Do not take human opinions as truth if they do not align with the Word of God. There was even a Church in the New Testament whom would not even take the Apostles word for anything without looking it up for themselves. 

Suffice to say, there are demons in Hell, but its not their domain. They are sentenced to be there as punishment for disobedience to God's command. 

God IS present in Hell just as He is in every single atom of His creation. There is no place, in the physical or spiritual world where God does not inhabit. 

Hell is not devoid of air for the simple fact that breathing air is irrelevant to people with no physical bodies. They indeed will breath whatever God provides for a spiritual being in that environment. 

Hell is not dark, that is without light. Read again what Jesus describes. You don't describe features and such of things you cannot see. 

There's very little truth, very little, in what that person posted. 

Hell is a holding cell of sorts until the Final Judgment Seat of Christ Jesus at the end of the thousand year reign of Christ Jesus. When there is a set time when the physical world gives up the dead bodies of all who rebelled against God, they are recreated into perfect bodies and reunited with their spirits, that have been in Hell. Having been found not to be in the Lamb's book of Life, they are cast into the lake of fire. Hell itself is cast into the lake of fire. 

Hell, for all the billions of people in it right now is exactly as Jesus describes it.

People there are not enjoying themselves. They aren't partying, living it up, having unending sexual adventures.  There's no endless supply of beer. There's everything that Jesus said was there.

Satan, as Jesus said, is a liar and the Father of lies.

People will be convinced to tell others the lies they hear from their Father, the Devil. 

Satan himself will, along with all others who deceived mankind, be cast into the lake of fire. 

Hell is not the absence of God in any way. I am convinced that Jesus Himself meets all who die. Either to welcome them to His Heaven or to take them to their choice for not choosing salvation in Him. To Hell. 

Jesus spent 3 days and nights in the heart of this earth. Spent those days with all who had died looking forward to that moment when the words spoken in the Old Testament would come true. That He was there to take them to Heaven.  Consider this also my Dear Reader, for those 3 days, because up until He took them the afterlife had a good place to wait in peace, and had the Hell side for the unbeliever to wait in torment, billions cried out to Him not to leave them there. They too now fully understood their reasons for being in the Hell side. They looked at the one whom they rejected. 

My Friend, the only unpardonable sin in this life is to reject salvation in Christ Jesus alone for salvation. 

All other religions will send you to Hell. Jesus said of Himself that He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father but through Jesus. That is to say can enter Heaven except through Salvation in Christ Jesus alone. 

Hell isn't ever going to be seen by a believer in Christ Jesus. 

There is no such thing as Purgatory. There's no waiting area similar to this world to wait for a second chance. There are no second chances after you breathe your last.

Jesus is coming again soon, as soon as His Father says it's time. 

You want nothing to be more important than knowing whether or not you are saved. 
You cannot afford to be wrong. One saved you are always saved. As Paul wrote in the book of Romans. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 

If you are unsure, if you have believed his lies, please stop right now and look up the Romans Road to Salvation. You have been granted time only while you are granted the right to breathe by God Himself. You may die today, so might I. We know not when Jesus says our time is up.

We know not when He will return. 

We DO know that everything written in the Bible has been found to be true. Even Scripture says that let God be found true and every man a liar. God's truth about life and death is the truth. 

It's true that Jesus came, lived, died, to save sinners like you and I. 
It's true that everything right, pure, and Holy is in Heaven. 

It's equally true that Hell is exactly what Jesus said it is like. 

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Yes, You Are!!

Yes, You Are!!

You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve. MATTHEW 4:10 

God exists everywhere, but He is not always manifest everywhere. His manifest presence comes to us when He is praised. C. S. Lewis once wrote that “it is in the process of being worshiped that God communicates His presence to men . . . even in Judaism the essence of the sacrifice was not really that men gave bulls and goats to God, but that by their so doing God gave Himself to men.” Perhaps you have experienced the wonderful presence of God during a special time of worship. As you were singing, praying, praising, and worshiping the Lord, you felt His presence closer to you than ever before! Worship causes the presence of God to be felt and experienced by His people. If you really want God to be in your church meetings, praise Him as best you can. Satan tempted Jesus by asking for His worship, not His service: “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me” (Matthew 4:9). Satan understands the correct order—the one you worship is the one you will serve. And keep in mind Christ’s response in verse 10: “You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.” - Dr. David Jeremiah Morning and Evening 

Even when caught, a child, in most cases goes straight into denial. Many newspaper cartoons and those on television depict children in this way. "It wasn't me! I don't know who did it." 

Adults are just as guilty. If this weren't true the legal system wouldn't be as over burdened as it is. 

You, my Dear Reader, are among the guilty just as much as I am. 

We attempt in every waking moment to serve two masters. Then deny it to each one.

We can't serve ourselves and God too. We can't be selfish and unselfish at the same time. 
We cannot live for Christ and live for ourselves too.  When we take up our own cross and follow Jesus there's only the ability to hold onto one cross. 

When we are with God, in fellowship with Jesus, it's unlike anything else.  

His sheep hear His voice and recognize Him.  His sheep go and stay where He says.

We all too often don't realize the truth that we indeed are worshipping someone or something other than Jesus.

The Bible says that God is a jealous God. It also says that we were bought with a price. 
Our lives are not our own.  Says that we, upon salvation, become part of the body of Christ. He is the head that directs the body.

Cells in a body that do their own thing are called cancer cells. Whereas at one point they started out in life as a normal cell something happened and they stopped functioning with the body and began living for themselves. Often with deadly consequences. 

The Church isn't immune to cancer cells in the body of Christ. In many places in the New Testament we are warned of false witnesses, false teachers, of backsliding people who are not who they say they are. 

We are given key things to be doing in Christ. Prayer and praise, focus and devotion. A goal of being Holy as He is Holy. To rely on the Word of God as the template of life. 

We, especially in our sensory overloaded world, have so many things vying for our worship. I didn't say our attention for a reason.  Because everything we interact with wants our attention, Satan's goal is to get us to transfer our worship from God to him or ANYTHING else.

Idle minds are the devil's playground it has been said.  My own worst times of temptation come when I have not kept alert to what's really happening with my mind. 

Believe it or not our world as a whole suffers from idolatry as bad as some of the cities Paul went to in his missionary journey.  They just didn't have the instantaneous ability to share it that we do. 

Our world is saturated in all forms of idolatry. We cannot devote our lives, we cannot serve two masters. As the Bible says we will hate the one and be devoted to the other. 

We were created to serve only God. Our worship belongs only to God. 

The price it cost Jesus to obey, to save you and I, is beyond our ability to comprehend. 

For all of eternity, up until that moment when all the sin of mankind was heaped upon Christ Jesus on the cross of calvary, He had never experienced full separation from His Father. 

Jesus had always had a perfect union with His Father and the Spirit of God. 

He gave up everything to endure the cross to save mankind because the love of God is that great.  No other person or anybody else could do what Jesus did. 

His sacrifice to enable us to live, merits our best efforts to live in regards to how His Word says we ought to live.  Serving Him only. 

Without faith it is impossible to please God.  Your faith has everything to do with your obedience.  Your faith leads you to listening to your Master's voice. Leading you to a more Christ-like life. 

Regardless of world opinion, this world has only just over a thousand years left to it. 1,007 years plus a little more than that to be precise. I know because that's what the Bible says. It's what God says. 

Also, regardless of world religions, there's only one way to be saved from the wrath of God to come. Through Salvation in Christ Jesus. 

Regardless of what temptations this world offers, we have a mission in life to share the news that God loves people and wants to save all who would call upon Him to be saved. 

If we are indeed serving one Master, then we would have that one Master's best interests at the heart of our lives.   If our zeal, passion, and life reflects something else...well...then we know whom we are serving. 

I indeed have and had dreams of a different life than what I have had in this life. 
Some of my dreams were aligned with God’s and I have been blessed beyond measure. 
Some I have had to give up because time is short and Christ's return is imminent. 
My dreams are not as important as the lives of those people whom God has brought across my path.  My dreams can take my eyes off my serving God. 

Are you serving only one? Our greatest struggle begins with the battle of who we worship.  After the Rapture of the Church, this world WILL turn to worship a world leader. You may laugh at the thought, but then again, you are already doing things forced upon you even in the last year that you never thought you would do. 

We cannot serve two.