September 2015 archives of www.christconnection.netdown below
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015
Oh, I know there are no decorations: no gifts being exchanged, no snow, reindeer, lights, or poinsettias.
But did you know it's Christmas?
O.K. Martel, you must have put too much rum in your eggnog.
Actually, I got this from the Bible.
John 1:14 tells us that "the Word (Jesus) was made flesh and DWELT among us".
That's how it reads in most English Bibles.
However, the word for "dwelt" in the original Greek is a derivative of skenoo which means a sukka or "tabernacle".
It's THE VERY SAME WORD used in the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Tanach) for the huts or sukkas (sukkot) mentioned in Leviticus 23:42.
Jesus (the Word) was made flesh and He (if I can invent a new word), "sukkaed" or "tabernacled" among us.
It doesn't take much imagination to realize that if He was born during the Feast of Tabernacles:
The traditional "stable" used by Christians on Nativity Scenes was NOTHING BUT A SUKKA (temporary hut) built specially for that Feast as the Lord commands.
Every time I see a decorated sukka the first thing that comes to mind is Christmas and Nativity Scenes (see picture BELOW, and in your mind's eye replace the table and chairs with figures of Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus, and what do you have?)
But there's more:
Leviticus 23:40 commands Israelites to be WHOLLY JOYFUL during this 7-day Feast.
It's commonly referred to as Zeman Simchat'enu or "THE SEASON of OUR REJOICING".
That's why the angel said to the shepherds on that First Christmas:
"Do not be afraid. I bring you GOOD NEWS that will cause GREAT JOY for all the people: Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord (Luke 2:10-11).
WHAT could possibly bring MORE REJOICING than to welcome the Savior, the Messiah, the Lord God Himself, into this world?
The only reason that the sukka became "a stable" in Christian tradition is because of the manger in which Jesus was laid.
Since the sukka is built outside a person's main residence, and since Bethlehem is well known as a town of shepherds (King David himself was shepherd there before he became king), it's only natural that there would be some feeding troth for sheep nearby, which Mary and Joseph used as makeshift cradle for Jesus.
Some 70 days later, on Hanukkah, which that particular year fell on December 25, the Magi from the East found Jesus with Mary and Joseph.
By then, they'd moved from the sukka into a house in Bethlehem BEFORE Joseph was told in a dream to flee into Egypt (Matthew 2:11, 13-14).
In Christian tradition, ALL OF THE ABOVE was condensed into ONE Nativity Scene that incorporated both, Jesus' birth on Sukkot and the visit from the Wise Men on Hanukkah.
So, WHEN should we celebrate His Birthday?
Either feast or, better yet, ON BOTH.
On Sukkot He was born as the promised Messiah and King of the Jews, from the tribe of Judah and from King David's lineage.
On Hanukkah, gentiles first found Him and WORSHIPED HIM (Matthew 2:11).
Glory to His Name!
ALL YEAR LONG I hear from bitter religious legalists intent on ruining the celebration of the Birth and Resurrection of our Savior for everyone else.
They refer to Christmas and the Resurrection as "pagan" feasts.
I DON'T GIVE A RAT'S PATOOT if NON-EXISTENT pagan deities Ishtar, Apollos or Sol Invictus were worshiped by pagans on those days.
I'm not pagan, I'm Christian.
EVERY SINGLE DAY ON THE CALENDAR BELONGS TO JESUS (Psalm 118:24).
He is to be glorified and praised ALL THE TIME, 24/7.
There's NO SUCH THING as a wrong time or "wrong day" in which to PRAISE HIM and CELEBRATE HIS SALVATION.
Ephesians 4:27 commands us NOT TO "give place to the devil".
If some self-righteous legalistic nincompoop wants to WITHHOLD ADORATION FROM Jesus on THOSE DAYS and GIVE that time and place OVER TO SATAN, that's between him/her and God.
My Bible says VERY CLEARLY:
FROM THE RISING OF THE SUN UNTO ITS GOING DOWN... the LORD'S name IS TO BE PRAISED (Psalm 113:3).
There are NO DAYS EXCLUDED from that command.
"But we will bless the LORD FROM THIS TIME FORTH AND FOREVERMORE Praise the LORD" (Psalm 115:18).
God's Name is to be praised, His Salvation (Jesus) is to be praised, from sun up to sun down, FOREVERMORE, EVERY SINGLE DAY OF OUR LIVES.
If anyone has a problem with that, take it up with God.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2015
DESTINED FOR GLORY
When God created man, He crowned him with His glory (Psalm 8:5).
Man LOST God's glory by sinning ON PURPOSE (Genesis 3:7,10).
God then called out the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Israel (Jacob) as His Chosen People (Deuteronomy 6:10; 1 Chronicles 16:13; Isaiah 44:1).
Under Moses, He gave them THE TABERNACLE, which He would at times fill with His glory (Exodus 40:34-35).
Under Solomon, He gave them THE FIRST TEMPLE which, at its inauguration, He also filled with His glory.
Levite priests could not perform their priestly duties NOR STAND, BECAUSE OF GOD'S GLORY (1 Kings 8:10-11).
Israelites rebelled, and God's glory departed.
This made them naked, defenseless and easy prey for conquerors.
It resulted in a divided Israel (northern and southern kingdoms), the 10 northern tribes being conquered by the Assyrians and driven into exile in 721 B.C.
It culminated IN THE DESTRUCTION OF THAT MAGNIFICENT TEMPLE by the Babylonians in 586 B.C. and the southern kingdom of Judah being taken captive.
God, in His great faithfulness, allowed Jews to return from their captivity at the end of 70 years and rebuild their temple.
The SECOND TEMPLE seemed insignificant in comparison to the first temple.
So much so that Jews who had seen the first temple WEPT LOUDLY when the second temple was erected (Ezra 3:12; Haggai 2:3).
Yet God promised through His prophet Haggai that "THE GLORY of this latter house (temple) shall be GREATER THAN the former" (Haggai 2:9).
God's Word is FAR GREATER than human intellect can comprehend.
Scriptures often have MORE THAN ONE correct meaning.
Such is the case with this particular verse from Haggai.
Even though, in time, king Herod would enlarge and refurbish that second temple and make it far more impressive, it would never come close in magnificence to what Solomon had built.
HOW, THEN, could God say THAT ITS GLORY WOULD SURPASS that of the first temple?
Because Jesus who is the "the brightness of God's GLORY, and the EXPRESS IMAGE OF His Person" (Hebrews 1:3) would ENTER AND PREACH IN that Second Temple.
Even though Jesus had temporarily set aside His glory in order to redeem us (Philippians 2:5-7), Jesus could PUT ON THAT GLORY AT WILL as He showed Peter, James and John on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:2).
That verse also applies to the FINAL TEMPLE which will appear during the Millennium (Ezekiel 40:48-49, chapter 41), which will exceed all three former temples (the first, second and third which will be built at the start of the tribulation, Revelation 11:1-2).
However, its ULTIMATE FULFILLMENT has to do with THE HUMAN TEMPLE.
The New Testament says, repeatedly, that WE ARE the temple of the Living Christ (1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 2 Corinthians 6:16).
Our glory will EXCEED that of ALL THE FORMER TEMPLES COMBINED because:
1. Jesus who LIVES IN US, will MANIFEST through us (Romans 8:29).
2. We will see Him "as He IS" and become LIKE HIM (1 John 3:2).
3. We will inhabit GLORIFIED, IMMORTAL BODIES (1 Corinthians 15:50-55).
And this time it won't be JUST ONE HUMAN who is crowned with God's glory.
It will be A MULTITUDE SO GREAT that IT CANNOT BE COUNTED (Revelation 7:9).
No wonder Habakkuk caught a glimpse of this ALL ENCOMPASSING splendor (zohar) and prophesied that:
THE EARTH WILL BE FILLED WITH THE... GLORY of the Lord, AS THE WATERS COVER THE SEA (Habakkuk 2:14).
Do you know WHO will fill it with God's Glory?
And Jesus will do it THROUGH US!!!
Glory, glory, glory, glory, glory, glory, glory to Him for ALL ETERNITY! Amen.
Christ IN US our HOPE - and ASSURANCE of - ETERNAL GLORY.
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2015
JESUS & RELIGION
Did Jesus found a religion?
If you asked most people, Christians and non-Christians alike would answer "yes".
The CORRECT answer is "NO".
Jesus did NOT establish ANY religion.
Jesus is NOT a religious leader.
Jesus IS GOD (John 1:1).
God is Spirit (John 4:24).
Jesus is a SPIRITUAL leader.
He is Master of the whole universe, and all the realms of existence.
Jesus came TO SAVE US and to show us THE WAY (Himself) back to God the Father (John 14:6).
The Way back to the Father is FAITH (trust) in Jesus (John 3:16).
Jesus did not establish ANY RELIGION.
He established A HEART-CHANGING, WORLD-CHANGING FAITH based on a personal, intimate relationship with Him.
ALL religion, including all forms of so-called "Christian" religion were INVENTED BY MORTALS.
The earliest form of Christian religion was INVENTED 300 years AFTER Jesus walked the earth.
Jesus founded HIS CHURCH.
His Church is NOT a religious institution, NOT some fancy building, but A GROUP OF PEOPLE in whom HIS HOLY SPIRIT LIVES (Romans 8:9).
Period. Nothing more, and NOTHING LESS.
He said that He would build His Church HIMSELF and ON Himself (Matthew 16:18).
He NEVER said His Church was ANY form of organized religion.
His Church is NOT a religion.
Again: His Church is NOT a religion.
His Church is A LARGE GROUP (and getting larger) of BELIEVERS (TRUSTERS) IN Jesus.
His Church is a SPIRITUAL entity, NOT a religious organization.
His Church transcends ALL man-invented religion and religious labels.
His Church is NOT A RELIGIOUS INSTITUTION, but A GREAT MULTITUDE THAT NO ONE CAN NUMBER of believers (TRUSTERS) in Jesus (Revelation 7:9).
That multitude DOES NOT TRUST ANY religion, OR ANY RELIGIOUS LABEL, for Salvation.
We trust JESUS - and JESUS ALONE - for eternal Salvation.
We have washed our robes and MADE THEM WHITE in the Blood of the Lamb (Revelation 7:14).
Unless you've done that, YOU CAN HAVE ALL THE "CHRISTIAN" RELIGION YOU WANT...
You can have "Christian" religion and "Christian" denominations COMING OUT YOUR NOSE...
You can CLAIM to be His "one, true Church" until your lying tongue falls off...
If you don't meet these conditions established BY JESUS, YOU'RE NOT PART OF HIS CHURCH, and YOU'RE NOT SAVED.
1 John 5:12 couldn't be clearer:
"He that HAS THE SON, HAS LIFE; he that HAS NOT the Son of God, has NOT Life"
It says we MUST HAVE JESUS.
It DOESN'T SAY we MUST HAVE religion.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2015
WHO CREATED Protestantism?
Was it Martin Luther's invention?
The answer will surprise 99% of you:
The Roman Catholic religion.
Roman Catholicism CREATED Protestantism.
If it weren't for the Roman religion, THERE WOULD BE NO "PROTESTANTS" TODAY.
Fact: Martin Luther WAS Roman Catholic.
Fact: Martin Luther NEVER SOUGHT to form "another religion".
Fact: Martin Luther only sought TO REFORM the horrendous corruption going on in Roman Catholicism.
Fact: Luther merely PROTESTED the SALE OF INDULGENCES where a "get out of Purgatory" certificate could be PURCHASED for MONEY, as if THE BLOOD OF JESUS WEREN'T THE ONLY THING that can cleanse us of sin (Hebrews 9:12,26).
Fact: It was Pope Leo X who EXCOMMUNICATED Luther on January 3, 1951.
It was Roman Catholicism who SEPARATED and REJECTED all Catholics who believed IN JESUS ALONE for Salvation, and tagged them with the segregating pejorative "Protestants".
Therefore, it was Roman Catholicism who both:
1. DIVIDED Western CHRISTENDOM FOREVER.
2. Called those Catholics who refused to submit BLINDLY to its Jesus-CONTRADICTING DICTATES "Protestants", and EXPELLED THEM from their religious institution.
I'm NOT anti-Catholic. I love Catholics, and want EVERY Roman Catholic to be saved.
However, Love SPEAKS the Truth.
Love REJOICES IN the Truth (1 Corinthians 13:6).
The way ANYONE is saved - whether they call themselves Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Protestant, Evangelical, Jew, Muslim, Buddhist, Taoist, Hindu or ANYTHING ELSE - is by receiving Jesus Christ (John 1:12-13) INTO our hearts, as ONLY God and ONLY Savior.
By TRUSTING Jesus, and ONLY Jesus, for ETERNAL Salvation (Hebrews 10:14).
I chuckle and shake my head in disbelief when I hear some modern Roman Catholic "apologist" COMPLAIN ABOUT THE MANY FACTIONS that divide Christendom.
Or when they invite non-Catholic Christians to REJOIN their RELIGIOUS INSTITUTION.
Because there would be ZERO "Protestant" denominations, and ZERO NON-Catholic Christians, HAD THEY NOT BOOTED THEM OUT.
These are well-established HISTORICAL FACTS.
And no amount of self-serving, revisionist religious propaganda can change them.
WHAT RIGHT do they have to COMPLAIN about "Protestantism", WHEN THEY CREATED IT?
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, 2015
52 YEARS... AND COUNTING
January 21st, 2015 marked the 52nd anniversary of the landmark Supreme Court ruling known as "Roe v. Wade", WHICH MADE ABORTION LEGAL in the United States.
A somber anniversary, if there ever was one.
Here we are 52 years and over 54 MILLION MURDERS LATER...
To put it in some sort of useful perspective, there were 6 MILLION Jews murdered during the horrendous Holocaust.
We have BUTCHERED 9 TIMES that amount.
Repeat: We have MERCILESSLY MURDERED 9 TIMES the number of people that were killed during the infamous Holocaust.
Only these aren't ordinary civilians, but HELPLESS, INNOCENT BABIES, which we've slaughtered and discarded like trash.
And that's ONLY HERE in the United States.
To say that our nation is ripe for God's judgment would be a gross understatement.
Such judgment, in fact, is long overdue.
Merely two short days after taking the oath as our 44th President, Barack Obama PRAISED the inhumane, amoral Supreme Court decision as standing for "a broader principle: that government should not intrude on our most private family matters".
He added that "no matter what our views, we are united in our determination to prevent unintended pregnancies, REDUCE the NEED for abortion, and support women and families in the choices they make".
The NEED for abortion?
With a veritable smorgasbord of contraceptives to choose from, what NEED is there for abortion?
There's NEED for ABSTINENCE, and DILIGENCE (less negligence and laziness) IN USING CONTRACEPTIVES.
There's THE NEED TO BE RESPONSIBLE AND USE PROPER CONTRACEPTIVES IF YOU'RE GOING TO SCREW AROUND.
There is NO SUCH THING AS "a NEED for abortion".
Adding insult to injury, the very next day after his first inauguration, the President signed into law one of his first executive orders,lifting the ban on U.S. funded abortions in other nations.
It's sad, ironic, AND HYPOCRITICAL, how the then new President bemoaned the faltering U.S. economy on the one hand, and pushed for an "emergency STIMULUS PACKAGE", yet on the other hand, told the whole world there's plenty of TAXPAYER money in the U.S. coffers to fund abortions worldwide.
Make up your mind, Mr. President. They couldn't BOTH be true.
And WHAT COULD WE EXPECT from an administration that STARTED OFF by recognizing the alleged "rights" of HARDENED, MURDERING, America-hating TERRORISTS, but DENIES THE RIGHTS OF INNOCENT, UNBORN HUMANS?
The answer: look at THE REST OF Mr. Obama's Presidency.
Look at how he's diminished this country, in the past 7 years, and dragged it into the ground...
The scariest part is that, should Jesus tarry, we still have ANOTHER YEAR of presidential incompetence with which to deal.
No wonder one of the aspirants to the presidency came up with the slogan "make America great again". He's right about at least one thing: we are NO LONGER A GREAT NATION. We still have MILITARY MIGHT, BUT GREATNESS WENT DOWN THE DUMPSTER THE MOMENT WE ELECTED then RE-ELECTED this clown.
Now we have "Christian" groups, who supported Mr. Obama in 2008, and helped get him elected, protesting that he should be mindful of the unborn.
Now they are demanding that the President and Congress defund Planned Parenthood.
What a bunch of two-faced HYPOCRITES!
They KNEW what he was, and what he believed in, when they voted for him.
The 2008 election merely exposed the IDOLATRY in their hearts. They placed a man's popularity, his skin color, or his rhetoric, ABOVE God's Word, hence, ABOVE GOD.
I know the alternative (McCain) was not so appealing, but you still had the choice of LIFE over DEATH, HONOR over DISHONOR, EXPERIENCE over INEXPERIENCE, and SUBSTANCE over STYLE.
In obedience to God's Word, I will continue to pray for the nation, and for the President.
However, ONLY TWO DAYS after he took the oath of office, I became UTTERLY REPULSED by his policies. And that repulsion has only INCREASED in ways too numerous to mention.
All of you so-called "Christians", ALL 27% OF YOU (almost ONE THIRD OF so-called Christians), who VOTED FOR THIS GLIB PRETENDER, remember every time you get your paycheck (or NOT), every time you pay taxes, get a welfare check, or find it hard to "make ends meet", that it's YOUR DOLLARS which ARE PAYING FOR WHOLESALE INFANTICIDE, NOT JUST AT HOME, BUT ABROAD.
Remember that's WHAT AND WHOM you voted for.
The words in Galatians 6:7 come to mind:
"Don't be deceived. God is NOT MOCKED. WHATEVER a man sows, that shall he also reap".
You just wait til Jesus separates the wheat from the chaff, and takes His people home.
You just wait til this nation starts "reaping" what it has SOWN.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 2015
CAIN AND ABEL
We've all heard the silly, old joke: "why couldn't Cain please God? Answer: He just wasn't Abel".
However, there's a little more to Cain than meets the eye.
There's this false teaching going around that Cain was the offspring of Satan having sexual intercourse with Eve.
That teaching IS FALSE.
Proponents of that false doctrine base it on 1 John 3:12 which says:
"Not as Cain, WHO WAS OF THAT WICKED ONE, and slew his brother".
There's just ONE TINY PROBLEM with that theory:
Genesis 4:1 says CLEAR AS CRYSTAL:
"And Adam KNEW Eve his wife; AND SHE CONCEIVED, and GAVE BIRTH TO Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD".
Therefore, either God CONTRADICTED HIMSELF AND LIED (perish the idea) or that CANNOT POSSIBLY BE the meaning of 1 John 3:12.
This just highlights THE ERROR of those who pick ONE verse from the Bible which suits their religious agenda and DELIBERATELY IGNORE what the REST OF the Bible has to say about a certain topic.
That not only constitutes shoddy scholarship, it is TOTALLY DISHONEST.
The physical birth of Cain was unquestionably due to Adam and Eve having sexual intercourse.
In John 8:44 Jesus told AN ENTIRE GENERATION OF unbelieving Jews "you are OF YOUR FATHER THE DEVIL".
Does that mean THAT SATAN ACTUALLY had PHYSICAL INTERCOURSE with their mothers?
Of course not!
There's NO QUESTION that Cain was "of that wicked one" (Satan), in the sense that, like HIS SPIRITUAL FATHER, he had A REBELLIOUS HEART toward God, as his attitude and ACTIONS plainly DEMONSTRATED.
We're speaking of SPIRITUAL fatherhood, NOT physical.
God has not had PHYSICAL intercourse with OUR mothers, yet He is the SPIRITUAL Father of all of us who have received His Son into our innermost beings (John 1:12-13).
Genesis chapter 4 tells us Cain was angry because God accepted Abel's sacrifice but that his own offering was NOT pleasing to the Lord.
The theory that God's displeasure with Cain's offering was due to his bringing the fruit of the ground which had become cursed because of man's sin is probably true.
However, THE MAIN REASON for God's displeasure was not that the offering came from the ground, but rather THE ATTITUDE OF CAIN'S HEART.
God sees and knows each human heart (Hebrew 4:12).
And, regardless of what we do ON THE OUTSIDE, IF THE HEART IS RIGHT, He is pleased (1 Samuel 16:7).
Abel HAD THE RIGHT HEART ATTITUDE of obedience and desire to please God, and he DID.
Cain's heart was filled with wickedness, he wanted to "please" God "his way", AS HE SAW FIT, thus he DIDN'T.
Cain's HEART was THE REAL problem.
Cain didn't really care about "pleasing God" as demonstrated by his defiant answer TO God "am I my brother's keeper"? (Genesis 4:9)
It just bothered him than God approved of Abel and disapproved of him.
Jesus told us that THE THIEF (Satan) only comes "to steal, KILL and DESTROY" (John 10:10).
The fact Cain committed THE FIRST MURDER in human history PROVES that he was the SPIRITUAL son of Satan.
Was Cain angry ONLY because of God not being pleased with his offering?
Envy that Abel was accepted and he was rejected was definitely part of the equation, but I submit to you, based on Scripture, that THERE'S EVEN A LITTLE MORE TO IT THAN THAT : Satan used Cain's rebellious heart, filling it with hatred and anger toward Abel which led to the MURDER of his brother, because he was TERRIFIED that Abel might be the Seed that God had promised to bring through the woman, which would CRUSH HIS EVIL HEAD (Genesis 3:15).
Satan played Cain for the fool that he was.
After all is said and done, the EMOTIONS (anger and hatred) that filled Cain's heart were mere manipulative tools which Satan used to carry out HIS REAL AGENDA:
He WANTED TO eliminate Abel FEARING that he might be the PROMISED Son of God.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 24, 2015
LOVE IS PERFECT
I'm not referring to HUMAN love which is finite and rather IMPERFECT.
I'm talking about THE LOVE THAT IS GOD.
The love that NEVER ENDS.
The love that is ETERNAL.
English, and other modern languages, are deficient in the love department.
We throw the word "love" around carelessly applying it to ALL SORTS OF debauched, ANIMALISTIC, carnal behavior and wrongly call it "love".
But even the highest and noblest manifestations of natural, human love fall way short of Perfection.
Jesus (God) is Love (1 John 4:16).
Love (Jesus, God) is perfect (1 John 4:18).
Love is Perfection.
Paul gives a magnificent description of God's Love in 1 Corinthians 13:1-8.
God's Love is LONG-SUFFERING, kind, does not envy...
"Rejoices not in iniquity, but REJOICES IN THE TRUTH;
BEARS ALL THINGS, believes all things, hopes all things, ENDURES ALL THINGS" (1 Corinthians 13:6-7).
It's God's VERY OWN NATURE, Love, which led Him (Jesus) to offer Himself IN SACRIFICE for the sins of mankind,both original sin and ALL SUBSEQUENT sins (John 3:16); Psalm 103:12.
THE REASON that Love is capable of SUPREME Sacrifice, THE REASON that Love "bears ALL things" and "ENDURES all things" is because Love WILL TRIUMPH OVER, DEVOUR AND DESTROY all things that are CONTRARY to His Nature.
That's how Jesus REMOVED the sin of the world - ONCE AND FOR ALL! (John 1:29; Hebrews 9:26; 1 John 3:5).
Glory to His Name!
Love, of the Divine kind, overcomes ALL things.
We were CREATED BY Love.
We are SAVED BY Love.
Love IS Perfection.
Love is ULTIMATE Victory.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, 2015
PEACE : YOUR UMPIRE
"LET THE PEACE OF GOD RULE YOUR HEART,ACTING AS AN UMPIRE; DECIDING AND SETTLING WITH FINALITY ALL QUESTIONS THAT ARISE IN YOUR MIND." (Colossians 3:15 Amplified Bible)
This ministry interacts with many people who ask for counsel on many different issues.
They seek advice on difficult decisions that they face:
Should I do this? Should I take that job? Move to another city? Buy that new home? Break up with my boyfriend/girlfriend? Marry this person? Divorce my spouse? Open this business? Start a ministry? Leave my congregation?
The list of questions goes on and on...
We give these individuals PRACTICAL advice. However, the main thrust of this ministry is SPIRITUAL.
We also give them SPIRITUAL advice.
The Spirit TRUMPS human reason.
The Spirit ALWAYS take precedence over the natural mind.
This shows us, yet again, WHY we MUST live FROM the born-again Nature inside, and NOT from the natural mind.
If you're facing some challenging issue, let the Holy Spirit, in your INNER MAN, be THE DECIDER.
Focus ON THE SPIRIT INSIDE YOUR STOMACH/KIDNEY area, and CHECK WITH HIM.
ASK HIM how HE FEELS about it.
If you have His Peace in your heart about the situation, and it does not IN ANY WAY oppose or contradict His Word, then go ahead.
If you feel UNEASY in your gut about it, if you are RESTLESS about it, if you have ANY doubts or misgivings, then you DON'T HAVE His peace, and YOU SHOULDN'T go ahead with whatever.
This is true EVEN WHEN that "whatever" makes perfect sense TO THE NATURAL MIND.
God knows EVERYTHING, including your "future". You DON'T.
When we CONSULT the Holy Spirit within us frequently, and this becomes a way of life for us, we will hear His Voice clearly.
Our spiritual ears will open and we will "hear" spiritually.
That's what Jesus meant when He stated repeatedly "he WHO HAS EARS TO HEAR, let him hear" (Matthew 11:15; 13:9; Mark 4:9,23; 7:16; Luke 8:8; 14:35; Revelation 2:7,17).
Although He is quite capable of communicating in an AUDIBLE Voice, the Holy Spirit is usually "heard" ON THE INSIDE.
I have asked Him questions and received AN INSTANT and "LOUD" "Yes!" or "No!"
I DIDN'T HEAR IT with my NATURAL ears, but INSIDE.
Answers don't always come instantly.
Sometimes we ask a question, and may have to WAIT FOR the answer.
It's better to wait on Him than to make the wrong choice.
Choices have CONSEQUENCES.
Word to the wise: DO NOT EVEN BOTHER asking the Spirit about something that YOU WANT TO DO which DISOBEYS or CONTRADICTS His Word.
You know adultery is wrong. Therefore, DO NOT ASK HIM if you should have an affair with that married man or woman.
There's NO REASON WHATSOEVER to ask Him that, when the issue has already been DEALT WITH and CLEARLY settled in His written Word.
You're wasting your time. God will never contradict Himself, and He's not buying your sanctimonious pretext.
You CAN'T fool Him.
He KNOWS THE TRUE MOTIVE in each of our hearts.
Bottom line: IF YOU DON'T HAVE Jesus' Peace in your heart (spirit) about it, DON'T DO IT.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2015
LESSONS FROM THE FIG TREE
Fig trees play a prominent role in Jesus' ministry.
We have the now infamous fig tree with no figs, which He cursed and caused to dry up.
And we have the eschatological parable of the fig tree in the Synoptic Gospels which points to our Lord's imminent reappearing.
We already debunked the FALSE theory that by cursing ONE fig tree among the many that abound in Jerusalem, Israel, and all over the Middle East, God was "cursing" Israel.
The question is WHY did Jesus curse THAT PARTICULAR fig tree, especially when it wasn't "the season for figs" yet? (Mark 11:13)
It was spring, just prior to Passover.
Jesus had arrived in Jerusalem with the disciples, entered the temple courts, checked everything out, but Mark tells us it was late, so they headed for Bethany to spend the night.
Bethany is about one and a half miles east of Jerusalem, on the other side (southeastern slope) of the Mount of Olives, and is the village where Lazarus lived with his sisters Mary and Martha (John 11:17-46).
The following morning Jesus and the disciples leave Bethany to return to Jerusalem and, on the way, Jesus gets hungry.
He sees the fig tree and, from a distance, notices it has leaves, therefore, He ASSUMES that it also had GREEN (unripened) figs.
However, it had NOTHING BUT leaves.
I have a fig tree in my yard, and can tell you that LEAVES AND FIGS SPROUT AT ABOUT THE SAME TIME, IN THE SPRING.
The figs, however, DO NOT RIPEN UNTIL late summer (August-September).
Figs ARE EDIBLE even before ripening.
This fig three, therefore, SHOULD HAVE HAD GREEN FIGS that Jesus and His disciples could eat.
However, this particular tree was ALL APPEARANCE, since it had leaves, but NO FRUIT:
It LOOKED GOOD at first glance, but upon closer inspection, was BARREN, and Jesus COULD (and WOULD) have NONE OF IT:
A perfect picture of so-called "Christians" who ARE TOTALLY FOCUSED ON OUTWARD APPEARANCE AND BEHAVIOR, to the neglect of THEIR INNER MAN (HEART), which is where the FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT is produced (Galatians 5:22).
They're the ones that Jude, Jesus' half brother, describes as being "clouds with no water, TWICE DEAD AND PLUCKED UP BY THE ROOTS" (Jude 1:12).
They're religiously ostentatious ON THE OUTSIDE, and EMPTY OF JESUS' fruit-producing SPIRIT INSIDE.
They're the ones who equate "holiness" with drabness and ugliness.
Who THINK they're "holier" than everyone else because they meet at a certain MAN INVENTED building on a particular day, DON'T wear stylish clothes, jewelry, make-up, or slacks, don't have beards, and never style their hair.
But they CARE NOTHING about having UNREGENERATE, UNSAVED HEARTS.
They are just like the Pharisees of Jesus' day, WHO WERE "ALL LEAVES" -- all about APPEARING "righteous" ON THE OUTSIDE - but fruitless, filthy and unregenerate ON THE INSIDE.
That's why Jesus called them (among other things) "hypocrites", "UNCLEAN", and "children of hell" (Matthew 23:13-33).
The Lord also used THAT PARTICULAR fig tree to teach a valuable lesson on faith:
Jesus replied, "Truly I tell you, IF YOU HAVE FAITH AND DO NOT DOUBT, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but ALSO YOU CAN SAY TO THIS MOUNTAIN (in context, to the Mount of Olives), 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and IT WILL BE DONE" (Matthew 21:21).
Note to all "name it and claim it" liars: the "conditions" set forth by Jesus are NOT "confessing" something OVER and OVER until it magically appears.
The conditions are, rather, HAVING FAITH and NOT DOUBTING.
If those TWO conditions are REALLY met, you ONLY NEED TO SAY IT ONCE -- as Jesus did with the fig tree -- and IT HAPPENS.
He didn't "confess it" over and over for 6 months, or three years.
He said it ONCE, WITH FAITH (TOTAL confidence), and NOT an ounce of doubt, and it happened IMMEDIATELY (Matthew 21:19).
That brings us to THE PARABLE:
"Now LEARN a parable OF THE FIG TREE; When its branch is yet tender, and it PUTS FORTH LEAVES, YOU KNOW that summer is near:
so, you too, WHEN YOU SEE ALL THESE THINGS (in context, THE SIGNS He'd just given in Matthew 24:29), recognize that He (the Son of man, Jesus) IS NEAR, RIGHT AT THE DOOR." (Matthew 24:32-33)
The signs are:
"IMMEDIATELY WITH THE TRIBULATION (just prior to the Rapture)... the sun shall be darkened, and the moon SHALL NOT GIVE ITS LIGHT, and THE STARS SHALL FALL FROM HEAVEN, and THE POWERS OF THE HEAVENS SHALL BE SHAKEN.
And then...the Son of Man WILL APPEAR IN THE SKY" (Matthew 24:29-30)
EVERYONE - believer and unbeliever alike will see these signs.
But AS BELIEVERS we're interested in ONLY ONE sign:
The APPEARING OF THE SON OF MAN HIMSELF.
One last thing:
When man fell into sin in the Garden of Eden, LOST HIS GLORY - and suddenly realized they were "naked" - they clothed themselves with FIG LEAVES (Genesis 3:7).
How ABSOLUTELY THOUGHTFUL of Jesus to use THOSE SAME FIG LEAVES as SIGN that He's about TO CLOTHE US AGAIN IN HIS GLORY!
Only someone who is both PERFECT, and A PERFECTIONIST, would incorporate SUCH DETAIL.
Oh, HOW PERFECT is Perfection !
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2015
The prophecy establishment repeats ad nauseam that God's "prophetic time clock" began ticking with the creation of the State of Israel on May 14, 1948.
The rebirth of "Israel" was, indeed, a watershed moment in prophecy fulfillment and I would not want to ever diminish its importance.
However, THERE IS NO SCRIPTURE that focuses on the creation of a modern State named Israel, as THE MOMENT that we should begin eschatological countdown:
And if any self-designated "prophecy expert" can produce JUST ONE, please write me.
There are, on the other hand, AT LEAST SEVEN Scriptures where end times are related to events in Jerusalem, including TWO timelines (Psalms 102:16; Daniel 9:24-27, the entire Book of Joel, Zechariah chapters 12-14, Luke 21:24-32, and Revelation chapters 11-15 and 19-22).
EVERY major prophecy concerning "the time of the end", begins and ends with Jerusalem.
But what about "the fig tree" mentioned in Matthew 24:32 and Luke 21:29? Isn't Israel "the fig tree"?
No. Jerusalem is.
In Jeremiah 24:8 the figs represent Jerusalem. In Joel 1:7, Jerusalem is called by God "MY FIG TREE". In Joel 2:22-23 it's again Jerusalem, and again in S.S. 2:7-13.
Obviously, the creation of the modern State of Israel is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT, since there HAD TO BE some official, national Jewish presence in the Holy Land IN ORDER TO FULFILL Luke 21:24 that calls for an END TO gentile trampling of biblical Jerusalem.
1948 was also A KEY PROPHETIC MOMENT in that, while Israel WON the War of Independence and gained territory, IT LOST the Jewish Quarter (biblical Jerusalem), causing THE EVICTION of its entire Jewish population and the DESTRUCTION OF the Quarter.
This HAD TO take place in order for the order to "RETURN and BUILD" Jerusalem to both take place and MAKE SENSE (Daniel 9:25).
However, the MODERN State of Israel is NOT - repeat, is NOT - by ANY stretch of the imagination, BIBLICAL ISRAEL.
The Israel mentioned in the Old Testament either referred to ALL 12 TRIBES (Genesis 49:28; Joshua 3:12), named after the 12 sons of Jacob (Israel), or to the 10 NORTHERN TRIBES during the Divided Kingdom Era (1 Kings 21:7; 2 Kings 23:22).
The 10 tribes were conquered and taken into captivity by the Assyrians in 721 B.C.
Eventually they spread into various parts of Europe, Asia and Africa where - with the exception of some tiny groups in India and Ethiopia - they became assimilated into various nationalities and cultures.
Their present whereabouts are KNOWN ONLY BY GOD, and remain UNKNOWN to humans.
For that reason, they are referred to as the "10 LOST tribes" to this very day.
What we know today as the State of Israel is comprised mostly of people of the tribes of Judah (hence the name "Jews"), Benjamin, and some Levites.
It's significant that, except for the passages in Psalms and in the Book of Joel, ALL these prophecies regarding Jerusalem and the "time of the end" were given AFTER Israel (the northern 10 tribes) had ceased to exist, and had VANISHED into multiple nationalities.
There's NO PROMISE ANYWHERE of bringing them back to the Holy Land until the Millennium.
BIBLICAL ISRAEL, comprised of the 12 tribes, WILL NOT BE RESTORED UNTIL King Jesus brings them back into their own land, as He promised, and settle them after "their old estates" (Ezekiel 34:11-28; 36:11; 37:19-22).
In contrast, God promised time and again to bring the people of Judah back from captivity (Jeremiah 25:4-12; 29:10; Daniel 9:25; Zechariah 1:12; Luke 21:24), and HAS DONE SO REPEATEDLY. Praise His wonderful faithfulness.
That, if nothing else, PROVES that eschatology is tied to Jerusalem and not to the formation of a political State named Israel containing only two tribes, and perhaps tiny fragments OF SOME of the other 10.
Therefore, while it's a very important development, there's NO WAY that the creation of a MODERN State named Israel, with a capital in "West" Jerusalem - WHICH NEVER EVEN EXISTED IN BIBLICAL TIMES - CAN BE THE MOMENT WHEN the eschatological COUNTDOWN BEGINS.
The end-time prophetic clock started ticking on June 7, 1967 (Iyyar 28, THE VERY DAY Jesus ascended to heaven after His Resurrection) when the Jews recaptured BIBLICAL ("East") Jerusalem after 2,030 years of continued Gentile occupation.
King David, the founder of Jewish Jerusalem, told us 3,000 years ago in PSALM 102:16:
"WHEN THE LORD SHALL BUILD UP ZION" (BIBLICAL JERUSALEM) -THEN HE SHALL APPEAR IN HIS GLORY".
He never said - "when God restores all of Israel". He never said "when a State named Israel is born".
It was also in 1967 that the "word" was given by then Prime Minister Levi Eshkol to "return and build" the Jewish Quarter, as per Daniel 9:25.
That was 48 years ago.
Gabriel told Daniel there would be "7 sevens" from that "word" to the appearing of Messiah Prince.
600 years later, Jesus AGAIN gave His Word ASSURING US that the generation that saw Jerusalem return to the Jews, after the long times of "Gentile trampling" were fulfilled, WOULD NOT PASS UNTIL we saw Him coming in a cloud with power and great glory (Luke 21:24-32).
David, Gabriel, and Jesus Himself, ALL PROMISED THE SAME THING:
All THREE timelines in the Bible begin with the RETURN OF JEWS TO Jerusalem and of Jerusalem to the Jews.
ALL ELSE, regardless of our good intentions, is human INVENTION...
There's no question that THE COUNTDOWN TO HIS RETURN HAS BEGUN.
In fact, the prophetic clock's been ticking for 48 years.
The countdown must, therefore, be near its end.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2015
HOW TO BE BORN AGAIN
I recently came across a 12-minute video from a certain denomination that supposedly dealt with this topic.
Naturally, I was curious to see how they would present this all-important Truth.
The religiously ordained individual DANCED AROUND the issue, and went into all sorts of PERIPHERAL SPECULATIONS about how Nicodemus came to Jesus at night, and that night symbolizes spiritual darkness.
He then launched into his murky opinion about how the spirit resembles the wind and how imperceptible the Spirit of God is...
Blah... blah... blah...
I watched the entire 12 minutes and realized that the video's title was misleading: the guy DIDN'T REALLY SAY ANYTHING about HOW to be born again.
It was just a bunch of vague, phony baloney, snarky malarkey, religious rhetoric WITH NO CLARITY OR SUBSTANCE.
This ordained religious figure DOESN'T tell anyone HOW to be saved, or even HOW ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL the New Birth from above, OF THE HOLY SPIRIT, is to one's Salvation.
You simply AREN'T SAVED WITHOUT IT.
I don't care HOW MUCH RELIGION YOU GOT.
The exchange between Jesus and Nicodemus takes place in John 3:3-6. It speaks for itself:
"Nicodemus said Him, HOW can a man BE BORN WHEN HE IS OLD ? Can he ENTER A SECOND TIME INTO HIS MOTHER'S WOMB, AND BE BORN?
Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say to you, UNLESS a man is BORN OF WATER (natural, physical child birth where the "water" in the woman's womb "breaks" and flows) AND OF THE Spirit, HE CANNOT ENTER into the kingdom of God.
That which is BORN OF THE FLESH IS FLESH; and that which is BORN OF THE SPIRIT IS SPIRIT."
Here's a paraphrase of Jesus' words:
"No, Nicodemus, you DON'T NEED TO RE-ENTER your mother's womb. I'm NOT talking about PHYSICAL re-birth but about SPIRITUAL rebirth.
Flesh GIVES BIRTH TO FLESH.
The Spirit GIVES BIRTH TO SPIRIT.
Therefore you must be born OF WATER (natural human birth first) and then BE BORN AGAIN OF THE SPIRIT.
Physical birth ALONE won't get you into heaven.
UNLESS a person is BORN AGAIN OF THE SPIRIT he/she CANNOT enter the Kingdom of God."
HOW, then, is SPIRITUAL RE-BIRTH ACHIEVED?
According to John 1:12-13:
"But TO ALL THOSE WHO RECEIVE HIM (JESUS), TO THEM He GAVE POWER TO BECOME the CHILDREN OF God, EVEN TO THEM THAT BELIEVE ON HIS NAME:
WHO WERE BORN, NOT of blood, NOR of the will of the flesh, NOR of the will of man, but OF GOD".
Being BORN OF GOD, or BORN OF THE SPIRIT, OR BORN AGAIN takes place, as these verses say, when WE RECEIVE Jesus into our hearts as ONLY Savior and God, and TRUST Him TOTALLY for Salvation.
This is what EVERY HUMAN BEING ON EARTH NEEDS TO KNOW:
Every atheist, every agnostic, every Buddhist, every Hindu, every New Ager, every Taoist, Muslim, Jew, and so-called "Christian".
THAT ETERNAL SALVATION IS FREE TO ALL THOSE WHO RECEIVE JESUS CHRIST INTO THEIR HEARTS as only God and Savior, AND who TRUST HIM ALONE for eternal Salvation.
You simply CANNOT BE SAVED WITHOUT Jesus.
I DON'T CARE HOW atheistic or agnostic you are.
I DON’T CARE HOW MANY GOOD WORKS YOU’VE DONE.
I DON'T CARE HOW MUCH RELIGION you got.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 19, 2015
WHEN SOCIALISTS MEET
When Pope Francis visits the White House and meets with President Obama next Wednesday, September 23...
It won't trigger the tribulation...
It won't start "World War III"...
It won't bring the Antichrist and False Prophet together...
It won't make some mysterious, invisible asteroid hit the earth...
It won't cause any apocalyptic events as so many religious morons fear.
What it will do (unfortunately) is bring together TWO OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL SOCIALIST MINDS ON THIS PLANET.
Besides their socialist ideology, they share anti-Israel and pro-Arab sentiments.
The Pope and the President , evidently, see eye-to-eye on many issues.
If anyone should be shaking in their boots about the Pope's visit, it should be because of what these two "birds of a feather" might concoct together.
Even before he steps on U.S. soil for the first time, the Pontiff is scheduled to visit oppressed, and deeply depressed, Cuba TODAY, and meet with both Castro brothers, Raul and Fidel.
In South Florida all local stations are providing live coverage, in both English and Spanish.
I hate to rain on anyone's parade and shatter their expectations, but Francis's visit to Cuba WON'T CHANGE ANYTHING.
Just like John Paul II's visit to Cuba in 1998 DIDN'T CHANGE ANYTHING.
Just like Benedict XVI's visit in 2012 (a mere three years ago) DIDN'T CHANGE ANYTHING.
This visit is merely staged propaganda, a political show for the mutual benefit of two fairly skilled POLITICIANS.
Make no mistake: being Pope is FAR MORE POLITICAL than religious.
It has VERY LITTLE to do with REAL Christianity.
The Masses Francis celebrates in Cuba will be little more than religious pep rallies.
The fact the Pope, a/k/a Jorge Bergoglio, will be able to address the Cuban people in Spanish, his native tongue, will add a nice touch.
However, it's a safe bet that Cuban people will hear an "inspirational message" containing ANYTHING BUT the Gospel.
SPIRITUALLY it will be an EMPTY GESTURE, and leave MUCH to be desired.
Politically, though, it's a win-win proposition:
Francis will look like a compassionate, charismatic, peace-making religious leader, who is welcomed even in Communist Cuba.
Raul likewise will give the FALSE impression of being less of a hard-liner than his brother Fidel, more open to the U.S., and tolerant of religion.
It was Pope Francis who worked behind the scenes to bring about the recent historic "thawing of relations" between the U.S. and Cuba after over 55 years of alienation, which also led to the re-opening of our Embassy in Havana.
It also resulted in the removal of Cuba by the U.S. from its list of "states that sponsor terrorism".
That's sort of like removing Madonna from the ever growing list of "entertainment industry" sluts.
And who can forget Francis' recent visit to Bolivia WHERE HE MET WITH YET ANOTHER COMMUNIST, Evo Morales, who gave him a crucifix of Jesus nailed not to the traditional cross, but to the Communist symbols of the hammer and sickle?
It is rumored that this time the Pope's agenda includes persuading the U.S. to end its economic embargo on Cuba.
Jorge just may succeed in what over 5 decades of antagonism, the coveted Cuban vote in the electoral rich State of Florida, and wishy washy diplomacy have failed to accomplish.
After all, he's got a like-minded socialist to work with.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 18, 2015
WHY JEWS DON'T BELIEVE IN JESUS
If you believe a disingenuous leader in the Seventh Day Adventist cult, it's because REAL Christians preach GRACE.
The true Christian faith, as taught in the Gospels, the Book of Acts, and the entire NEW Testament, is Salvation BY GRACE ALONE, through faith ALONE.
Salvation's not a thing, He is a Person.
According to this individual, the reason most Jews reject Jesus is because Jews follow the law (or at least they CLAIM TO) and REAL Christians teach we're NOT under the law.
This guy is lying.
He's been BLINDED by religion.
As one who has both, brought Jews to faith in their Messiah, and debated some of their anti-Christ detractors AND SHUT THEM UP, I can tell you THAT GRACE is NOT the main reason they reject Jesus.
Jews were GIVEN the law, but they have NEVER KEPT the law (John 7:19).
They've had the Law for 3,500 years and HAVE NEVER KEPT IT (Psalm 53:1).
They can CLAIM to "observe the law" all they want.
Fact is, THEY DON'T.
Jesus IS the ONLY law observing Jew, who KEPT and FULFILLED (SATISFIED) the law, ON OUR BEHALF, DOWN TO EVERY LAST JOT AND TITTLE (Matthew 5:17-18), as He Himself plainly said.
The various objections from our Jewish friends include the Messiah not being God, but a mortal man born of normal, human parents (that's NOT what their own Tanach says, (see Isaiah 7:14; Psalm 110:1).
Or that his kingly ancestry from David's lineage must come from the real father, not a stepfather like Joseph (again, they contradict their own torah, since Genesis 3:15 undisputedly says it will come from THE MOTHER).
In Jesus' case, it came from BOTH.
But, after all is said and done, the MAIN Jewish objection to Jesus being the Messiah is that He did NOT restore the Kingdom to Israel.
At least, He didn't restore a Kingdom VISIBLE to natural human eyes (Luke 17:21) in His First Coming.
Jews expected, and to this day expect, a Messiah who will restore David's Kingdom to Israel, bring Israelites back from exile, and usher in an era of peace, where Jews will no longer be oppressed or subjugated by other nations.
ANY rabbi will confirm that THIS is the ultimate test, and that is THE criteria by which THEY will recognize the Messiah.
Had Jesus used His Omnipotence back in the first century, toppled the Roman Empire, liberated Israel, brought back the 10 northern tribes from exile, and set up His earthly Kingdom in Jerusalem, I have no doubt that Jews would have enthusiastically welcomed Him as Messiah, whether He told them to keep the law or not.
ONLY ONE PROBLEM:
Had He done that, He COULDN'T have PAID FOR, and COULDN'T HAVE redeemed Jews and ALL of mankind from their sins (Genesis 22:8; Isaiah 53: 5, 6).
Again: Had JESUS done that, He COULDN'T have PAID FOR, and COULDN'T HAVE redeemed Jews --and ALL of mankind -- from their sins (Genesis 22:8; Isaiah 53: 5, 6).
Had He done that, our Jewish friends would still be sacrificing animals, and shedding THEIR innocent blood for THEIR sins.
Animal blood could only take away sin TEMPORARILY. Jesus' Blood took sin away FOREVER (Hebrews 9:12,26; 10:1-14).
Praise His Holy, Wonderful Name!
We needed, Jews needed, THE WORLD NEEDED, a Messiah whose SINLESS Blood could remove our sins ONCE AND FOR ALL (Praise His Holy Name forever!) (Hebrews 9:12).
A Messiah who could BY ONE SACRIFICE, Himself, FOREVER SATISFY Divine Justice and put us in right standing with God the Father (Hebrews 10:14).
A Messiah who could not only bear the punishment for sin, which is death, BUT OVERCOME DEATH ITSELF: by RISING FROM the dead (Hosea 13:14; Psalms 16:10; Isaiah 26:19).
Jesus did ALL that, and then some.
He hasn't forgotten natural Israel.
He WILL restore A VISIBLE, EARTHLY Kingdom to Israel (Luke 1:32-33; Zechariah 14:9).
He WILL bring the 10 tribes back from exile and resettle them in the Promised Land (Isaiah 11:12; Ezekiel 36:11, chapters 47, 48).
He WILL forever deliver Israel from oppression or tyranny, His Name be praised (Joel 3:16-17).
He WILL usher in an era of Peace (Isaiah 2:4).
Best of all, from earth's perspective, we're only about 4-6 years away from the fulfillment of these awesome prophecies (Daniel 9:25).
Jews WILL, eventually, recognize and receive Jesus as their Messiah (Zechariah 12:10).
"And of His Kingdom there shall be NO END".
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 17, 2015
Probably the best and most beautiful example of true repentance (teshuva) found in Scripture is that of the prodigal son, in the Gospel of Luke.
The word "prodigal" means "reckless" or "uncontrolled".
This young man had squandered his father's estate on "riotous living".
He'd blown off his inheritance on booze, sex, drugs, jet-setting, nightclubbing, and all manner of excess.
One fine day his proverbial chickens came home to roost and he found himself penniless, hungry and HOMELESS.
He ended up A BEGGAR, in mire and filth, feeding pigs, doing someone else's bidding, digging into trash cans for food, and eating whatever leftover scraps he could find in order to survive.
Then one day it DAWNED ON HIM: Even THE SERVANTS in my father's house live BETTER than this!
I will RETURN (do teshuva) to my Father's house and beg his forgiveness, and ask him to take me back as one of his servants (Luke 15:15-17).
The prodigal doubtlessly felt bad about his sins, but it was a change of mind, a change IN HIS WAY OF THINKING, which in turn led to a CHANGE OF HEART, that made him decide to RETURN to his dad's house.
"Father", he said, "I HAVE SINNED against heaven, and in your sight, and AM NO MORE WORTHY TO BE CALLED YOUR SON".
The Father would hear NONE OF IT.
In fact, He COULDN'T EVEN WAIT for the son to arrive and, seeing him from a distance, RAN OUT TO MEET HIM.
Filthy and stinky as the rebellious son was, the Father hugged him and kissed him (Luke 15:20).
He immediately put a signet ring on his finger, dressed him in the most beautiful Armani robe from his own closet, and prepared a sumptuous feast TO CELEBRATE HIS RETURN (Luke 15:22-24).
Scripture doesn't say so, but I'm sure the son also got a nice, hot bath and some badly needed Calvin Klein cologne shortly after.
Traditional Judaism says that in teshuva restitution MUST be made.
JESUS, however, said otherwise.
The prodigal COULDN'T RESTORE ANYTHING, even if he wanted. He was flat broke and had NOTHING to offer.
ALL he could do was throw himself at his Father's mercy and beg to be received as a lowly household servant.
But the Father's love for him was UNCONDITIONAL.
There are NO CONDITIONS TO His Love.
As far as Dad was concerned THAT WAS STILL HIS SON. And, despite his rebellion and sinful deeds, HE'D NEVER STOPPED LOVING HIM.
He loved the rebellious son REGARDLESS of what he'd done and was READY, WILLING AND ABLE TO FULLY FORGIVE , FORGET and RESTORE.
Glory to His Name!
The prodigal realized that despite his rebellion, his brazen SELFISHNESS, his irresponsible foolishness, and stubborn disobedience, in his Father's eyes HE WAS STILL HIS SON, and ALWAYS WOULD BE.
Are you like this guy?
Have you squandered God's talents and blessings?
Did you once love Jesus, but have forsaken Him?
He's NEVER forsaken you (Hebrews 13:5).
Are you sick of hanging out with pigs?
Are you hungry for a nice, hot, nutritious meal and the comforts of home?
Your Dad waits excitedly and with open arms to WELCOME YOU BACK.
Come on, prodigal. It's time to RETURN.
It's time to COME HOME.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2015
There's a 40-day season in the Hebrew calendar beginning in the month of Elul and ending on Yom Kippur, called teshuva.
We are in that season right now.
The word teshuva or simply shuva means to return.
It can mean return to a physical location, or return to God as in repentance.
According to Daniel 9:24-27 and Deuteronomy 31:10 it will be DURING THIS SEASON that Jesus will RETURN to rule and reign as King of the earth and Israel's Messiah.
For natural Israelites it's a season of introspection, repentance, doing charitable deeds, righting the wrongs that they've done, and reconciling with those they're estranged from.
For believers in the Jewish Messiah, it should be a time of returning to OUR FIRST LOVE, namely Jesus.
While our natural mind retains no conscious memory of it, we were "in love" with Him before the foundation of the world when He chose us, and predestined us, in Himself (Ephesians 1:4).
Since He is love, that means we were ONE with Him.
When we were born-again, we became ONE SPIRIT with Him again.
We are ONE with Him in spirit, right now, whether we realize it or not (1 Corinthians 6:17).
Instead of trying to "guess dates" WITHOUT SCRIPTURAL BASIS that will turn out to be wrong, instead of running to every prophetic forum on the internet and gulping all that nonsense, we should be focused on His Presence, focused on Jesus' very Being, His very Nature, INSIDE OF US.
He's NOT "out there". He's "IN here".
NO ONE wants the Rapture more than yours truly.
But let's not just think of it as something that'll happen to us, but as Someone who's already IN us:
The Rapture is that split second in "time" when WE'RE CAUGHT UP INTO Jesus, the Jesus WHO already LIVES IN us, which in turn means this false "self" is consumed and JESUS is UNVEILED and MANIFESTED (REVEALED) IN US (Romans 8:18-19).
It's all been prearranged: We are PREDESTINED to CONFORM TO His Image (Romans 8:29, 30).
Rapture's not a thing. Rapture is A PERSON.
Our Rapture IS Jesus.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2015
RAPTURE IN SEPTEMBER
Will the Rapture happen on September 23, 2015?
NO. It will NOT.
We had barely crossed from April into May and we were already getting a ton of emails about that false theory. And it's gotten progressively worse.
Since we ARE NOW IN SEPTEMBER, you can imagine the flood of emails on this topic.
You Tube is CRAMMED FULL of IDIOTIC VIDEOS which base this on everything from conjecture to dreams, to supposed visions, and everything in between: ON ANYTHING BUT Scripture.
Oh foolish Christians!
Poor, pitiful, confused, spiritually emaciated weaklings!
Bible illiterates tossed to and fro by EVERY wind of FALSE doctrine!
If you spent HALF the time ASSIMILATING the Books of Daniel and Revelation as you devote to prophecy TRAFFICKERS, to SELLERS of WORTHLESS books and DVDs, and to delusional conspiracy theorists, you wouldn't be SO CONFUSED and EASILY DECEIVED.
You also wouldn't be SO PARANOID.
But the U.S. will be conducting special military exercises from July thru September 15, across 9 states...
I know. WHERE IN SCRIPTURE does it say that ANY MILITARY EXERCISE predicts the Rapture?
But the Pope will visit the White House on September 24....
So what? The "Pope" is NOT EVEN MENTIONED in the Bible.
But there's a fourth "blood moon" on September 28...
No. There HAVE NOT BEEN ANY "blood moons". NOR WILL THERE BE ONE ON 9/28.
What will happen on 9/28 is A NATURAL LUNAR ECLIPSE, which is NOT the "moon turning the color of blood" mentioned in Revelation 6:12.
But they're doing this experiment with a particle collider...
WHERE DOES THE BIBLE mention a particle collider?
WHAT does THAT have to do with eschatology?
But Stephen Hawking said...
WHO CARES what Hawking says? When did he become God?
I care about WHAT GOD says. The same God that ‘Stephen SAYS' "does not exist".
But they're going to open "the gates of hell"...
I thought that JESUS - and NO ONE ELSE - HAS THE KEY TO HELL (Revelation 1:18).
I thought that JESUS is the One who opens and NO ONE can shut, and when He shuts NO ONE can open (Revelation 3:9)
So what will happen on Yom Kippur, which this year falls on September 23, 2015?
I DON'T KNOW. And neither do you.
But I do know THERE WON'T BE ANY RAPTURE on that date.
Nor will "WW III" begin on that date.
Those doctrines are FALSE.
They have NO BIBLICAL SUPPORT WHATSOEVER, and YOU KNOW IT...
You COULDN'T back it up with Scripture IF YOUR LIFE depended on it.
And I DARE YOU to try.
Well, HOW can you be SO SURE?
Simple: I know what GOD says.
I trust His "MORE SURE WORD OF PROPHECY" (2 Peter 1:19).
GOD SAYS that Jesus must return at the end of the 70th "week" or shemitta (Daniel 9:24-27).
GOD SAYS that 7-year shemitta cycles begin and end on Sukkot (Deuteronomy 31:10).
Therefore, Jesus MUST RETURN on Tishri 15, during the Feast of Sukkot.
Since the tribulation begins 3½ years PRIOR to His Second Coming (Daniel 7:25; 12:7; Revelation 11:2-3; 12:6,14: 13:5), and the Church is raptured AS THE TRIBULATION BEGINS (Revelation 7:9,14) that means the tribulation and Rapture must take place around Passover, in the month of Aviv (a/k/a Nisan): IN THE SPRING, NOT in September.
Since the Word of God is IMMUTABLE, NOTHING -- in heaven, hell or earth -- CAN CHANGE that Truth.
But so-and-so WROTE A BOOK...
So DID GOD.
Why don't you study and HONOR HIS BOOK, instead of filling your deceived mind with "their" books?
"Their" books will be tossed into the garbage (where they BELONG) within the next 5 years.
His Book has STOOD THE TEST OF TIME: 3,500 YEARS, to be exact.
His Book is AS RELEVANT TODAY as it was when it was written.
His Book, WILL ENDURE FOR ETERNITY (Psalm 119:89; Isaiah 40:8; 1 Peter 1:25).
You can believe the loony conspiracy theorists , the wolves in sheep's clothing and the PROPHECY TRAFFICKERS, who are ONLY INTERESTED IN YOUR MONEY, IN DECEIVING DUMB SHEEP, and in SELLING you FALSE prophecy.
Or you can believe GOD:
"But EVIL MEN AND SEDUCERS WILL GO FROM BAD TO WORSE, DECEIVING, AND BEING DECEIVED.
But YOU MUST CLING TO THE THINGS WHICH YOU HAVE LEARNED and HAVE BEEN ASSURED OF, KNOWING FROM WHOM you have learned them" (2 Timothy 3:13-14).
That is good advice for any generation. But it's PARTICULARLY APPLICABLE to THIS ONE.
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 14, 2015
Even before the U.S. Senate gave President Obama the necessary votes to thwart the Republican attempt to block the Iran Deal, Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, was SO EMBOLDENED by the stupid deal that HE OPENLY DECLARED THAT WITHIN 25 YEARS ISRAEL WILL CEASE TO EXIST.
He boastfully stated that:
"I'd say (to Israel) that THEY WILL NOT SEE (THE END) OF THESE 25 YEARS.
God willing, there will be NO SUCH THING as a Zionist regime IN 25 YEARS.
Until then, struggling, heroic and jihadi morale will leave no moment of serenity for Zionists,"
Some of the agreement's measures will SUPPOSEDLY (underline "supposedly") remain in place FOR... you guessed it, 25 YEARS.
Seizing on that time frame, Khamenei also noted that some in the West have commented that the agreement should allay Israel's fears about a nuclear Iran during that time.
"We agreed to hold talks with (the Americans) ONLY on the nuclear issue and FOR PARTICULAR REASONS, and thank God, OUR NEGOTIATORS DID A GOOD JOB," he said.
Translation: "those DUMB, wishful-thinking Americans GOT DUPED.
We outsmarted them and TOOK FULL ADVANTAGE of their stupidity, incompetence, and naivete.
This "deal" FAVORS US, and DOES NOTHING for Israel"
The VERY FACT that Iran's leader uses the "Iran Deal" AS BASIS TO THREATEN ISRAEL'S EXISTENCE, and BOLDLY PREDICT ITS DEMISE, PROVES how lousy, ineffective and UNENFORCEABLE the so-called "deal" is.
For those who marvel at Donald Trump's steady rise in the polls, he authored a best-selling book titled "THE ART OF the Deal".
Americans are fed up with political correctness, and Washington's INCOMPETENCE.
Whatever else one may think of Trump as a human being, on this HE IS TELLING THE TRUTH:
The U.S. is NO LONGER RESPECTED, and is perceived as weak, timid, and accommodating.
The actions and attitudes of Iran, Russia, China, Israel, Egypt, and many other nations across the globe, provide ample evidence of this heartbreaking fact.
The Ayatollah might as well have said "10 years".
THE DAY AFTER the Senate failed to stop the Iran Deal, Iran just HAPPENED TO "FIND" a HUGE STASH OF URANIUM.
They are MOCKING US RIGHT TO OUR FACE.
All of this brings us to Jesus:
If I didn't know WHAT JESUS has said about Israel, I would tend to agree with the Ayatollah.
But, praise His Name, I DO KNOW WHAT JESUS has said about both Israel AND IRAN.
Therefore, I can CONFIDENTLY say to that spawn of Satan who calls himself the Ayatollah: "FAT CHANCE!"
Israel will be defeated, and occupied by gentiles, led by Antichrist, for 3½ years (Daniel 12:7; Revelation 11:2; 13:5).
Iran, however, WILL ALSO (for the SECOND time in history) BE CONQUERED by Antichrist and RENDERED UNABLE TO eradicate Israel (Daniel 8:19-25).
At the END of those 3½ years Israel will be BIGGER AND BETTER THAN EVER (Genesis 15:18).
Moreover, Israel WILL RULE THE ENTIRE WORLD, INCLUDING Iran (Isaiah chapter 60; 66:22-24).
Iran, like it or not, will be ruled BY THE JEWISH MESSIAH with "a rod of iron" (Psalm 2:9; Revelation 2:27;19:15).
And it will be IRAN that CEASES TO EXIST about 1,000 years from now (Ezekiel 38:1-5; 39:4,11-15).
If the Ayatollah had bothered to read God's Book - the very one that Mohammed first plagiarized, then EDITED - in "writing" his Qu'ran - he WOULD KNOW BETTER.
But the Ayatollah DID SAY that his vitriol against Israel would happen ONLY IF GOD is "willing".
I realize, of course, that by "god" he meant "allah".
Since there is NO ALLAH...
And since the One, TRUE God is supremely FAITHFUL, and UNWILLING TO part with Israel... (Romans 11:25-26).
Even when MOST of Israel has rejected Him...
Israel IS HERE TO STAY(Jeremiah 31:35-36).
And NO HATE MONGER, no amount of American INCOMPETENCE, NO INSTRUMENT OF SATAN, NOT even SATAN HIMSELF, can CHANGE GOD... OR HIS WORD.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2015
THE CHURCH IN THE 21ST CENTURY
The modern Pentecostal movement was born in 1906 and continued to spread in the early 1900's, primarily in the Azusa Street Revival in L.A.
For the first half of the twentieth century, it encountered harsh criticism and staunch opposition from both, mainline denominations, and even evangelicals.
Pentecostals, to put it bluntly, were despised, ridiculed, and marginalized. The derogatory term "holy roller" was regularly used to refer to individuals who spoke in tongues, or believed in divine healing.
It was in the late 60's and early 70's, as the movement continued to spread, even into mainline denominations, that the Pentecostal movement gained acceptance.
Moreover, by then, the tables had turned, since Pentecostals controlled all major Christian media.
Because of all the criticism, opposition and ridicule they had endured for decades, from fellow Christians, they now felt the need to staunchly defend ANYONE and EVERYONE who exhibited THE SIGNS of Pentecostalism, namely, tongues, healing, and prophesying:
"We have influence now. We both control and have access to major media, and we're not going to let you put our preachers and beliefs down anymore".
Although TRUE Pentecostalism is, undoubtedly, a sovereign move of God's Spirit, it has, unfortunately, one major drawback: because outward demonstrations, such as healings, miracles, signs and wonders are such integral part of the movement, it lends itself to trickery and imitation.
As Christian media grew in power and influence, it was only a matter of time before its airwaves were filled with charlatans who claimed to heal people in God's name, when they lacked the power to heal a zit.
Likewise, they were filled with snake oil salesmen who promised God's favor in exchange for donations.
I could give you a list that would read like the "Who's Who" of current so-called Pentecostal leadership.
So, where does that leave us?
The 21st century Church, as a whole, needs to grow up:
Non-Pentecostals need to ACKNOWLEDGE, ONCE AND FOR ALL, that the gifts of the Spirit come from God, and are as true today, as available today, as important today, as they were for the early Church.
Pentecostals, on the other hand, NEED DISCERNMENT. They must realize that, while their INITIAL movement was Spirit generated, "all that glitters is not gold".
Not everyone who CLAIMS to heal is a true healer. In fact, most who make those claims today, ARE FAKERS.
Babbling in tongues, in front of a microphone, doesn't make you more spiritual, more anointed, more correct, or more knowledgeable, than anyone else.
They must remember that Jesus himself WARNED US ABOUT FALSE PROPHETS, WHICH COME TO US IN SHEEP'S CLOTHING, BUT INWARDLY, ARE RAVENOUS WOLVES (Matthew 7:15).
They must acknowledge that, indeed, such wolves have crept in, and ARE FLEECING THE DUMB SHEEP, even as we speak.
They must be MORE RESPONSIBLE, ethical AND DISCRIMINATING in providing air time to various ministries.
The qualifications for ministry haven't changed.
They are given to us in 1 Timothy Chapter 3.
Those qualifications AREN'T how much money someone can raise, or how many mansions or airplanes they own, but rather, how many souls they win, do they set a good example for other believers, and do they preach the true Word of God, or a twisted gospel of greed?
God says His Church will someday JUDGE THE ANGELS (1 Corinthians 6:3).
May God's Spirit help and guide us IN JUDGING OURSELVES.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 12, 2015
What's a Judaizer? A SUPPOSED believer in Jesus Christ who insists we MUST keep the Old Testament law (Torah) in order to have right standing with God.
That's not my definition. It's the Bible's (Galatians 2:14).
Judaizers have been coming out of the woodwork lately at an alarming rate.
This shouldn't surprise us, since Jesus warned that in the last days MANY would come in His Name (saying that He is the Messiah) and WOULD DECEIVE MANY (Matthew 24:4).
They come to us in sheep's clothing, but inside they're ravenous wolves... or, at the very least, legalistic zombies.
Judaizers are hell-bent on imposing a legalistic burden on those who've truly been born again, and live in the freedom of the Spirit.
They're the ones who insist we must observe Old Testament dietary laws, the 10 commandments, and "keep the weekly Sabbath".
Don't get me wrong,I'm ALL for keeping the Sabbath, not just on Saturday, BUT EVERY SINGLE DAY.
Sabbath keeping has ALWAYS BEEN (THEN AND NOW) ABOUT RESTING FROM OUR OWN WORKS, AND TRUSTING GOD'S.
The purpose of the weekly Sabbath was to remind the children of Israel that they were to CEASE FROM THEIR OWN DEAD WORKS AND REST (TRUST in) GOD'S SUPERNATURAL WORK on their behalf.
The weekly Sabbath was NEVER the designated day to assemble. It was THE DAY OF REST (Exodus 20:8-10).
RESTING in Jesus and TRUSTING Jesus, and Jesus ALONE: THAT'S WHAT THE REAL SABBATH IS ABOUT. That's what SALVATION IS ABOUT.
Unless you're COMPLETELY trusting Jesus' death, burial, resurrection and ascension, and His Blood, to wash away your sins... and NOTHING ELSE...
You can ATTEND SERVICES ON SATURDAY UNTIL YOUR FACE TURNS BLUE... you're NOT keeping the Sabbath.
You can TRY to keep the 10 Commandments until you turn into a dried up, shriveled,old prune. You won't make it into the Kingdom of God.
Fact is, God COULDN'T CARE LESS what day of the week you attend services.
Judaizers can be very persuasive. Their approach, at least ON THE SURFACE, appears to be quite godly. After all, they're quoting the Bible (mostly Old Testament).
Satan, however, also quoted the Old Testament, and there's NOTHING GODLY about him.
One guy in particular, who wears some sort of Old Testament costume, is now telling his CUSTOMERS (eh... followers) that, unless they call God by His Hebrew Name "Yahweh", or Yeshua, that they are using His Name in vain, thereby breaking the second commandment.
What absolutely ridiculous, legalistic crap!
According to Genesis 11:14, IT WAS GOD WHO CONFUSED AND DIVIDED THE (one) LANGUAGE IN ALL THE EARTH INTO VARIOUS LANGUAGES: according to Hebrew tradition AT LEAST 70 DIFFERENT LANGUAGES.
So, after God Himself PERPETRATED THIS ON HUMANITY, God's going to now turn around and BLAME them FOR NOT SPEAKING HEBREW???? Give me a religious break!
According to this clown (hey, if you wear a funny-looking costume, what does that make you?) people in France, Spain or Latin America who call on the Name of Jesús are using His Name in vain. Same goes for the the Italians when they call Him Gesù, the Japanese Iesu, etc. Same goes for all English speaking people when we call Him "Jesus".
What complete farce!
There's no LESS IMPORTANT issue as far as God is concerned, than calling God by His Hebrew Name, His Latin Name or His English Name. The Church faces far greater challenges than that. God knows every language and communicates in all of them.
When He talks to me, do you think He usually speaks Hebrew? How about when He talks to you? No, He has complete mastery of English, I assure you.
When you called out to Him, in your time of need, did you have to say "Oh, Yeshua"! in order for Him to answer?
How about when you first invited Him into your heart? Did you call Him Yeshua? No, you said "Jesus" and He came anyway, didn't He?
Judaizers can twist and turn their dead religion all they want, BUT THIS IS WHAT IT BOILS DOWN TO: DO YOU TRUST JESUS COMPLETELY?
If you do, you need nothing else. He's sufficient.
If you don't, you'll have to "add" and "add" and "add". .. and KEEP ADDING BECAUSE YOU WILL NEVER MEASURE UP.
If you don't TRUST JESUS COMPLETELY for Salvation,YOU'RE NOT SAVED.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2015
14 YEARS AGO TODAY
Whoever you are, wherever you live, 9/11 is a date you'll always remember.
It was 14 years ago that 19 evil men, all instruments of Satan, hijacked two commercial airplanes and flew them into the World Trade Center in N.Y. and the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, taking the lives of 2,974 victims, from more than 70 countries, along with their own wretched lives, in the greatest terrorist attack our nation has ever witnessed.
The incident sent shock waves throughout America and the entire world.
Since that fateful day, our nation and the world have never been the same.
In many ways it seems like it was only yesterday. It's hard to believe that 14 years have passed.
Since then, the masterminds of 9/11, like Bin Laden, Al Zarkawi and Kalid Sheik Mohammed, have either been killed or imprisoned.
But their dastardly deed has left a permanent scar in our nation's psyche.
Not to mention that they've been replaced with EVEN WORSE (as hard as it may be to imagine) Islamic MONSTERS like Al Baghdadi.
9/11 was a wake-up call to slumbering America.
The Sunday after 9/11, churches in the increasingly secular U.S.A. were filled to capacity.
But the sudden "turning to God" didn't last long.
All that remained of the once impressive Twin Towers in the aftermath of 9/11 were some steel beams in the shape of a cross.
You'd think our people WOULD HAVE "gotten the message".
Yet our country is more secular than ever, our own President proudly says that America is NOT a Christian nation, society at large has deteriorated beyond description, and our Supreme Court has just made gay marriage the law of the land.
Christians can complain about it all they want, but we are MORE AT FAULT than anyone else.
Instead of speaking the Truth in love and setting the moral example for the nation, we have SOLD OUR HEARTS AND MINISTRIES TO THE GOD OF MONEY, reducing the Gospel to an empty "invitation" while we INCESSANTLY BEG FOR DOLLARS.
We've lost ALL credibility.
The lost are either NOT LISTENING, or they are MOCKING. And I, for one, can't blame them.
It's a sad day when a nation founded by Christians, and where 87% of the population professes the Christian faith in one form or another, MINORITIES such as Buddhists (3%) Muslims (0.6%) and secularists are represented in popular culture, and OUR FAITH, the faith of our Founding Fathers, ISN'T.
It's a sad, SAD DAY for our nation... in more ways than one.
As we re-live this somber day in American history, we mourn the victims; we remember their families, the survivors, and the heroes of 9/11.
We honor the memory of Todd ("let's roll") Beamer, a Christian brother, and the brave men and women of United Airlines flight 93 who TOOK THE DRASTIC DECISION TO END THEIR OWN LIVES by attacking the hijacking terrorists and crashing the plane into an empty field in Philadelphia,in order to SAVE OTHER LIVES and thwart the terrorist plan which, apparently, intended to crash the plane into the White House.
That was an act of TREMENDOUS courage and selflessness, which no red-blooded American can EVER forget:
John 15:13: "GREATER LOVE HAS NO ONE THAN THIS: to LAY DOWN ONE'S LIFE for one's friends"...
We thank our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for protecting our nation and keeping us safe since that awful, tragic morning.
It appears that, THE ONLY THING that will shake our nation out of its spiritual stupor is A SUPER-RUDE AWAKENING.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 2015
LIVING IN THE SPIRIT
HOW does one live IN THE "SECRET PLACE" of the Most High? (Psalm 51:6; 91:1)
HOW does one LIVE and WALK in the spirit, as Scripture COMMANDS? (Galatians 5:16,25)
These terms, both found in the Bible, essentially mean the same thing.
They both refer to STAYING in, and LIVING FROM, THE INNERMOST PART (CORE) of our being, where Jesus placed the New Nature He gave us when we got born again.
It's living CONNECTED WITH the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit who LIVE WITHIN us - NOW:
Step 1: Realize that the born-again experience is NOT "the end" but THE BEGINNING OF the Christian walk.
Step 2: The born again experience (Jesus IN us) is what QUALIFIES US TO ENTER His Kingdom.
It's also THE ENTRANCE INTO the Kingdom of God.
This means that the born again experience OPENS THE DOOR TO ALL KINDS OF MARVELOUS EXPERIENCES in/with Jesus.
Step 3: LIVE IN THE INNER God
Once we acquire the born-again Nature, which is God's OWN Nature - we are TO LIVE FROM THERE (2 Peter 1:4).
Christians CHEAT THEMSELVES out of the unspeakable joy and wonder of experiencing Jesus up close and personal BY FORGETTING their born-again Nature AS SOON AS THEY GET IT.
This happens, in large part, because of ignorance.
95% of Christians, INCLUDING THOSE IN MINISTRY, DON'T KNOW WHAT HAPPENS when we're born again:
The King and His Kingdom COME INTO us (Luke 17:21).
Step 4: SETTLE in our minds - ONCE AND FOR ALL - that Jesus IS IN US:
NOT figuratively, but ACTUALLY AND LITERALLY (John 14:23; Ephesians 3:17).
Although as God He is omnipresent, as far as our daily life and relationship with Jesus are concerned HE IS WITHIN US.
Step 5: STOP looking for Jesus "out there", and START FOCUSING ON HIM WITHIN YOURSELF.
Step 6: You'll NEVER experience Jesus ON THE OUTSIDE, but ON THE INSIDE.
He LIVES in you 24/7.
There's never a time when He's NOT in you.
Step 7: PRACTICE
Since we are COMMANDED to live and walk, day to day, moment to moment, IN THE SPIRIT, DEEP WITHIN US (from the stomach and kidney area), we MUST OBEY and do JUST THAT.
It's NOT a "push button" proposition.
It takes PRACTICE. Until it becomes A HABIT.
Until LIVING FROM YOUR INNERMOST BEING BECOMES THE NORM.
Step 8: If we want the Rapture, it is IMPERATIVE - ABSOLUTE MUST -- that every believer becomes familiar with, and PRACTICES LIVING FROM, their born again Nature.
The Rapture WON'T happen TO US from without, but FROM WITHIN.
We are "caught up" into THE INNER Christ.
We are transformed from mortal to immortal (glorified) FROM INSIDE (2 Corinthians 4:6-7).
Christ IN us is our ONLY hope of glory.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 9, 2015
THE CHURCH JESUS FOUNDED
There is NO QUESTION that Roman Catholicism is THE EARLIEST form of ORGANIZED Christian RELIGION.
It's approximately 1,600 years old and dates back to the late 4th century A.D.
THAT is UNDISPUTED.
AT ITS INCEPTION, although it had already degenerated considerably, this form of organized Christianism WAS NOT AS EVIL AND CORRUPT AS IT EVENTUALLY BECAME.
I was BORN AND RAISED in Roman Catholicism. I attended Roman Catholic schools. Therefore, I am perhaps better equipped than most Christians to address this issue.
I grew up BELIEVING that Roman Catholicism was "the ONE TRUE Church that Jesus founded".
That's WHAT I WAS TAUGHT since childhood.
That's what I WANTED TO believe.
I still love Catholics and want ALL Roman Catholics to be saved.
They, like everyone else, are saved by RECEIVING Jesus Christ INTO THEIR HEARTS as ONLY God and ALL-SUFFICIENT Savior (John 1:12; Romans 10:9).
And by TRUSTING Him - TOTALLY and COMPLETELY - for ETERNAL Salvation from that moment forward.
Although it's always an option, they DO NOT NEED TO leave Roman Catholicism in order to be saved.
However, the doctrine that this INVENTED religion is "the Church that Jesus founded" - to the EXCLUSION OF all other manifestations of Christian faith - simply DOES NOT WITHSTAND EITHER BIBLICAL, HISTORICAL, or ARCHAEOLOGICAL SCRUTINY:
1) When Jesus announced in Matthew 16:18 that HE (not mortal men) would build HIS CHURCH and that the "gates of hell" WOULD NOT PREVAIL AGAINST IT, He was in Cesarea Phillipi (Israel), some 3,030 miles AWAY FROM Rome (Matthew 16:13).
To put it into some sort of useful perspective, that's roughly the same distance from N.Y. to L.A.
2) Jesus was NEVER in Rome (Matthew 15:24).
How can a religion INVENTED 300 years later, in a city He never even VISITED, be "the Church that Jesus founded"?
3) According to Scripture the ONE TRUE CHURCH that Jesus founded WAS BORN IN JERUSALEM, NOT ROME (Acts 2:1-33).
There was NO CHURCH in Rome at the time.
There was NO CHURCH ANYWHERE at the time, except in Jerusalem.
It's, therefore,IMPOSSIBLE for His one true Church to be THE RELIGION OF Rome.
4) The birth of the Church took place in Jerusalem, on the JEWISH Feast of Pentecost, in 33-34 A.D (Acts 2:1).
ALL its members WERE JEWISH.
Mary, the mother of Jesus, and His brothers were PART OF that ONE, TRUE, and VERY JEWISH Church IN JERUSALEM, NOT Rome (Acts 1:14).
The Church was born IN THE FIRST CENTURY A.D., 43 DAYS AFTER Jesus' Crucifixion, 40 DAYS AFTER His Resurrection, AND 7 DAYS AFTER His Ascension (Acts 1:3-9).
Roman Catholicism was born THREE CENTURIES LATER.
5) The ONE TRUE Church that Jesus founded was ALWAYS HEADQUARTERED IN Jerusalem (Acts 8:1; Acts 15:4, 22).
6) the ONE TRUE Church was founded ON BELIEF (faith in) Jesus ALONE and on God's Grace ALONE-- NOT on WORKS, and NOT on ANY man-made religion (Acts 15:9-11).
7) BEFORE there was ANY church in Rome there were churches (communities of Christian believers) in:
Jerusalem (Acts 2:1-5; 8:1; Chapter 15).
Antioch, Turkey (Acts 13:1).
Cyprus (Acts 13:4).
Pisidian Antioch (Acts 13:14)
Iconium (Acts 14:1)
Lystra in southeast Turkey (Acts 14:8).
Syria and Cilicia (Acts 15:41)
Philippi (Acts 16:12)
Thyatira (Acts 16:14)
Thessalonica (Acts 17:1)
Berea (Acts 17:12)
Athens (Acts 17:34)
Corinth (Acts 18:1,11)
Galatia (Acts 18:23)
Ephesus (Acts 18:24; 19-17)
The church in Rome is NOT EVEN MENTIONED UNTIL the LAST CHAPTER of the Book of Acts (Acts 28:14-15).
And EVEN THEN, the church in Rome was A SMALL COMMUNITY of born-again Christian believers, and NOT the RELIGION THAT WAS INVENTED SEVERAL CENTURIES LATER, which we know today as Roman Catholicism.
There were no "Popes" at the early church in Rome, no cardinals, let alone an entire "college" of them... no papal conclaves, no alleged "successors of Peter", no cathedrals, no Mass, no Vatican, no convents, no priests, no nuns, no religious habits (apparel), no cult of Mary or saints, no statues, medals, crucifixes or rosaries...
There were NO Crusades, no "indulgences", no Thirty Years' War, no torture, no persecution, no Inquisition, no barbaric colonization of the Americas, where Catholic conquistadors savagely raped, maimed and massacred native Americans AT WILL in the name of "the holy church".
8) The ONE TRUE Church is NOT founded on Peter, but on Jesus.
Jesus, NOT PETER, is the Rock on which the one true Church is FOUNDED - as Scripture clearly says (1 Corinthians 3:11), and as Peter himself tells us, NOT once, NOT twice, BUT SEVEN TIMES(Acts 4:11-12; 1 Peter 2:4-8).
9) Jesus' assignment to Peter was to EVANGELIZE JEWS, NOT gentiles (Matthew 15:24; John 21:17; Galatians 2:7).
Romans are GENTILES.
Had Peter become "Bishop of Rome" and "first Pope" (as Roman Catholicism FALSELY claims), he would have had to LIVE IN Rome, and EXPRESSLY DISOBEY JESUS' ASSIGNMENT.
He would be TOTALLY UNWORTHY of the title "apostle", let alone of being "the rock" on which ANYTHING is founded.
10) In line with this, the New Testament talks REPEATEDLY about Paul preaching, teaching and being IN ROME (Acts 28:14-17,21; 19:21; 23:11; 28:30; Romans 1:15; 2 Timothy 1:17).
NOT ONCE does it mention Peter being in Rome.
NOT EVEN ONCE!!!
11) In Matthew 16:18 Jesus pointedly says that HE (not mortal man) would build HIS church.
He DIDN'T say that a Roman Emperor would build His Church 300 years later.
Nor did He say He'd transfer its SEAT from Jerusalem to Rome.
12) Jesus promised that "the gates of hell WOULD NOT PREVAIL AGAINST" His ONE, true Church (Matthew 16:18).
In Revelation 17:16-18 we find that the gates of hell DO PREVAIL against the religion of Rome, and UTTERLY DESTROY IT.
There's NO WAY, therefore, that Roman Catholicism can be "the one true Church founded by Jesus".
13) In Luke 19:41 Jesus WEPT over the TEMPORARY destruction of Jerusalem.
In sharp contrast, He DOESN'T SHED ANY TEARS OVER the ETERNAL destruction of Rome AND ITS RELIGION (Revelation 18:21-24; 19:3).
Furthermore, when Rome and its religion are finally destroyed ALL OF HEAVEN REJOICES and gives God THREE HALLELUJAHS (Revelation 18:20; 19:1-4).
It's THE ONLY TIME in the ENTIRE Bible - Old and New Testaments - that THREE CONSECUTIVE HALLELUJAHS are given to God.
Draw your own conclusions.
14) Rome and its religion WILL BE DESTROYED by Antichrist and his 10 kings (Revelation 17:16-18).
However, GOD says that it is HE who PUTS IT IN THEIR HEARTS to carry out Rome's destruction (Revelation 17:17).
The fact that GOD CLAIMS PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY for the TOTAL and ETERNAL destruction of Rome, and its man-invented religion, speaks for itself.
In light of these UNDISPUTED, BIBLICAL, Holy Spirit inspired FACTS, we are left with ONLY TWO choices:
1) That Jesus LIED at least 14 times.
2) That Roman Catholicism HAS LIED repeatedly and for many centuries.
We know that Jesus is God and CANNOT lie (John 14:6; Romans 3:4; Hebrews 6:18).
These are BIBLICAL facts.
And they are IRREFUTABLE.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 2015
WHAT IS "THE CHURCH" ?
In Matthew 16:18 Jesus made the historic announcement that HE (not mortal man) would build HIS CHURCH and the "gates of hell WOULD NOT PREVAIL against it".
He fulfilled that promise in Acts chapter 2:1-36, when He sent the Holy Spirit to LIVE IN each believer.
That's when the Church WAS BORN.
The word "church" appears 114 times in the New Testament.
However, there is GROSS MISINFORMATION, and HUGE CONFUSION as to what the Church is... and isn't.
2,000 years after Jesus walked the earth, certain denominations claim to be "the Church that Jesus founded" TO THE EXCLUSION OF everyone else.
Still other denominations claim to HAVE A MONOPOLY ON TRUTH, and that they were INVENTED to "correct" the problems and wrong doctrine in the Church.
ALL denominations who make these claims ARE LYING.
When Jesus and His disciples spoke of the "Church", they were talking about THE WHOLE ASSEMBLY (GROUP) OF BELIEVERS in Him.
They NEVER referred TO A BUILDING as "the Church".
They NEVER referred TO A DENOMINATION (like Baptist, Methodist, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Catholic, Presbyterian, Church of God, or Pentecostal) as "the Church".
They NEVER referred TO A RELIGION as "the Church".
There were NO Christian BUILDINGS or worship centers in the Early Church.
There were NO DENOMINATIONS in the Early Church.
There was NO CHRISTIAN (organized) RELIGION in the Early Church.
There was GENUINE FAITH (TRUST) in Jesus and there were religious PRETENDERS.
The earliest denomination, the earliest "Christian" religion, and the earliest "Christian" buildings, were INVENTED - BY MORTALS -400 YEARS LATER.
These are UNDISPUTED, BIBLICAL and HISTORICAL FACTS.
For these reasons, I STOPPED BELIEVING in organized religion- regardless of name - many years ago.
I STOPPED BELIEVING IN DENOMINATIONS.
I ALSO STOPPED BELIEVING IN BUILDINGS.
Those buildings FALSELY called "churches" ARE NOT the Church.
Again: Those buildings FALSELY called "first church of whatever", or "our lady of whatever" ARE NOT the Church.
NO Christian denomination - REGARDLESS OF name or provenance - is the Church.
There are people in my family who are born-again and still believe in organized religion.
I'm sure there are some in your family.
Just like there are people READING this message who believe in it.
I'm a realist, and acknowledge that for most Christians that's NOT LIKELY to change anytime soon - this side of the Rapture.
As long as they are SAVED (born again) I'm happy to allow the Holy Spirit to guide them as to when, where and HOW to worship Jesus.
However, Jesus called me to preach and teach THE TRUTH, NOT some religious fantasy concocted hundreds of CENTURIES AFTER His public ministry, death, Resurrection and Ascension.
And THE TRUTH concerning HIS Church is exactly what I have stated above - and NOTHING else.
What, then, is Jesus' Church?
It's A WORLDWIDE GROUP of believers, that TRUST JESUS - AND JESUS ALONE - to be their God and ONLY Savior, and who have experienced A NEW SPIRITUAL BIRTH FROM ABOVE (John 3:3-5).
Consequently, they are people IN WHOM JESUS LIVES (Ephesians 3:17).
They are individuals in whose hearts THE HOLY SPIRIT LIVES (Romans 8:9).
These people (His Church) TRANSCEND man-made religion, denominational barriers, WRONG TEACHING, religious lies, religious buildings, religious tradition, and ANYTHING ELSE invented by mortal men and women.
These people (His Church) - ALTHOUGH YOU'D NEVER KNOW IT by looking at them or hearing them - ARE ONE SPIRIT WITH JESUS AND WITH EACH OTHER.
That SPIRITUAL unity - which is ETERNAL, UNCHANGING Truth -- will MANIFEST at the collective Rapture.
These individuals were CHOSEN by God and PREDESTINED in Christ Jesus BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE EARTH (Ephesians 1:4).
Collectively, we comprise THE BODY OF Christ.
Jesus, is NOW and FOREVER the Head of His Body (Ephesians 1:22).
If JESUS - and NO ONE ELSE - IS NOT THE ONE AND ONLY Head of your religion, denomination, or group -- THAT'S NOT HIS CHURCH.
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 7, 2015
Which of the THOUSANDS of "Christian" religious organizations did Jesus establish?
Surely, ONE of them must be the "true Church" Christ founded.
The answer may surprise some of you:
Jesus established a SPIRITUAL Church based on being SPIRITUALLY CONNECTED TO Him.
He commissioned His disciples to preach the Good News (Gospel)of FREE SALVATION to ANYONE who WANTS IT (Mark 16:15; Revelation 22:17).
Jesus NEVER established buildings, hierarchies, religious garments, rules and regulations.
Never established church choirs, youth groups, revivals, Sunday school or Sunday school quarterlies.
His ONLY commandments were TO LOVE:
1. God with all our hearts and minds.
2. Our neighbor.
3. Each other.
Love is THE ROYAL, UNIVERSAL LAW OF HIS KINGDOM.
It is truly astonishing to see HOW that simple SPIRITUAL ASSEMBLY that He founded has evolved and DEGENERATED during the past 2,000 years:
But my denomination (religious organization) is THE ONLY ONE that preaches the truth. We're the ONLY ONES who truly follow Christ.
NO. You're not.
If you believe that, what you are is a modern Pharisee.
Pharisees thought THE VERY SAME THINGS you think today, back in the first century.
Jesus told them flat-out that they WOULD NOT ESCAPE the condemnation of hell (Gehenna, Matthew 23:33).
The Church that Jesus Christ founded IS NOT A RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION.
It is A SPIRITUAL Body (assembly) comprised of ALL BELIEVERS who have MADE A SPIRITUAL CONNECTION WITH THE LIVING CHRIST AND HAVE BEEN SPIRITUALLY REGENERATED OR BORN-AGAIN.
Jesus told Nicodemus, a distinguished member of the Sanhedrin, a circumcised Jew who "observed" the law, the 10 commandments and the 24-hour Sabbath:
"UNLESS a man is BORN AGAIN... of the Spirit,he CANNOT ENTER the Kingdom of God" (John 3:3-5).
You can't say it ANY CLEARER, or MORE DIRECTLY, than THAT.
NO SPIRITUAL REBIRTH = NO SALVATION.
I don't care WHICH religious organization you belong to.
Entrance into God's Kingdom takes place INSIDE, IN OUR INNERMOST BEING, not by joining some segregated, "better than everyone else" religious club ON THE OUTSIDE.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, 2015
A LITTLE JESUS
People have as much Jesus AS THEY WANT.
Repeat: People have as much, or as little, Jesus as THEY WANT.
Jesus will never force His way into a person's heart.
He comes to live in us BY INVITATION.
By the same token, He won't fill that person with MORE OF HIMSELF than they want and are ready to receive.
Unfortunately, believers for the most part ARE SATISFIED WITH "a little" Jesus.
We don't see very many Christians LONGING FOR deeper, more intimate communion with our Living Savior.
We don't see very many SEEKING Him and His beautiful Face with ALL their hearts.
For the most part, we want just "a little Jesus".
Just give us enough Jesus TO AVOID GOING TO HELL.
Just give us enough Jesus so we'll go in the Rapture and miss the tribulation.
Let's give Jesus JUST ENOUGH ROOM IN OUR LIVES, JUST ENOUGH TIME AND ATTENTION, to get us into heaven.
Or to get us through some difficult situation we're facing.
Is that God's Will or God's best?
Jesus IS MUCH TOO PRECIOUS for us to treat merely as a spiritual CONVENIENCE.
He PAID TOO HIGH A PRICE to purchase our Salvation for us to treat Him in such nonchalant and, frankly,DISRESPECTFUL manner.
He DESERVES our BOUNDLESS love and gratitude.
He DESERVES our FULL, UNDIVIDED attention.
He DESERVES ALL our heart.
He DESERVES ALL our time.
IT'S AN INSULT to give Him only that time when we have "nothing better to do".
All true believers WILL MANIFEST Jesus, sooner or later (1 John 3:2).
That's our eternal Destiny.
He is Whom we're PREDESTINED TO BECOME (Romans 8:29).
That being the case, we might as well start seeking His Face NOW and manifesting Him NOW.
We need to offer ourselves up,AS LIVING SACRIFICES, totally and wholeheartedly (Romans 12:1).
We need to OFFER UP this FALSE "existence", SO THAT HIS ABUNDANT, ETERNAL LIFE may manifest.
What could be better and more glorious than THE KING HIMSELF LIVING IN US AND MANIFESTING THROUGH US?
Jesus wants ALL OF YOU.
The real question is:: HOW MUCH JESUS do YOU want?
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 5, 2015
NOT BY WORKS
Ephesians 2:8-9 is one passage of Scripture that EVERY Christian should know by heart. It says:
"Because you are saved BY GRACE thru FAITH; and that, NOT of yourselves: It is THE GIFT of God: NOT by works, lest anyone should boast".
Salvation is NOT by works.
Salvation is A GIFT.
As with any other gift, there's NOTHING we can DO to earn it or deserve it.
ALL WE CAN "DO" IS RECEIVE IT.
Then TRUST (have faith) that IT'S OURS:
"The righteousness of God is by faith in Christ Jesus UNTO ALL and upon ALL OF THEM THAT BELIEVE" (Romans 3:22).
It's NOT by works.
"Being JUSTIFIED FREELY BY HIS GRACE thru the redemption that is in Christ Jesus" (Romans 3:24).
It's NOT by works.
"Therefore, we conclude that a man is justified BY FAITH, WITHOUT THE WORKS OF THE LAW" (Romans 3:28).
It's NOT by works.
"And if by grace, THEN IT IS NO MORE OF WORKS: otherwise grace is no more grace" (Romans 11:6).
It's NOT by works.
"By the works of the law shall NO FLESH BE JUSTIFIED" (Galatians 3:16).
It's NOT by works.
"Who has (already) saved us, and called us with a holy calling, NOT ACCORDING TO OUR WORKS,but according to His own purpose AND GRACE, WHICH WAS GIVEN US (ALREADY) IN CHRIST JESUS BEFORE THE WORLD BEGAN" (2 Timothy 1:9).
It's NOT by works.
"Knowing that a man IS NOT JUSTIFIED BY the works of the law, but BY THE FAITH OF Jesus Christ (Galatians 2:16).
It's NOT by works.
"NOT BY WORKS of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of REGENERATION, AND RENEWING of the Holy Spirit" (Titus 3:5).
It's NOT by works.
If it's NOT by works, THEN YOUR WORKS (good or bad) have NOTHING to do with salvation.
Evangelical ministers, STOP preaching A CONFUSING, murky "gospel" of grace plus works.
That's NO Gospel, AT ALL.
It's NOT by works.
Armstrongists, Seventh Day Adventists, Church of Christ, United Church of God, Sabbatarians, legalists AND SO CALLED "Evangelicals"... which part, exactly, of "NOT by works" don't you understand?
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 4, 2015
THE FEAR TEST
God is NOT the author of fear. God KNOWS no fear. God HAS no fear.
God is love (1 John 4:16) and PERFECT Love CASTS OUT fear (1 John 4:18).
God has NOT given us the spirit of fear (2 Timothy 1:7).
Fear DOESN'T COME from God.
Fear COMES FROM Satan.
Therefore, A VERY SIMPLE WAY OF DISCERNING TRUE DOCTRINE FROM FALSE DOCTRINE IS TO PUT IT TO THE "FEAR" TEST:
When a lying pastor or preacher tells his audience that unless you tithe, you're under a curse, and God won't bless you... not only is that FALSE AND UNSCRIPTURAL. It fosters FEAR.
When some greedy preacher tells you that if you want something from God like prosperity, a loved one saved, good health, or some situation resolved, you MUST buy God's favor by "sowing a seed", NOT ONLY IS THAT BLASPHEMOUS, it fosters FEAR.
When some religious nutcase tells you that you MUST belong to their religious group or denomination in order to be saved, NOT ONLY IS THAT TOTALLY UNSCRIPTURAL (Acts 4:12), they're putting FEAR in your heart.
ALL religion is FEAR-based.
Hence, ALL religion comes from Satan, NOT from God.
When someone tells you Jesus death on the cross, His Blood, His Resurrection, His complete work of Redemption ISN'T SUFFICIENT TO SAVE US... when they tell you, you must ALSO keep the 10 Commandments... or keep the weekly Sabbath, or ADD anything else, not only are they blaspheming, not only are they DIMINISHING JESUS, not only are they making the 10 Commandments and the Sabbath CO-SAVIORS - which means JESUS ISN'T the ONLY Savior - they're putting UNFOUNDED FEAR in people's hearts.
We already established that God's NOT the author of fear. Hence, such doctrines CANNOT, and DO NOT come from God.
When some LOST RELIGIOUS PUPPET, WHO DOESN'T KNOW God's Word, tells you the mark of the beast will be worshiping God on Sunday, please tell them that they don't know what the heck they're talking about (they DON'T!)
While you're at it, tell them that such teaching CANNOT come from God since it's not in the Bible and PRODUCES FEAR(Revelation 13:6-18).
When someone tells you The Rapture's post trib, and that Christians will go thru the tribulation's HORRIFIC judgments -- JUST LIKE THE UNSAVED, Christ-rejecting people who caused those judgments to come -- and that they'll be persecuted, massacred and ruled over by the Anti-Christ, THEY ARE PREACHING LIES AND FEAR.
Now let's see how Truth stands up under such scrutiny:
Christians DO NOT tithe. Period.
Nor can they come under any curse, for the simple reason that no remotely normal earthly father would curse his own children, LET ALONE A HOLY, LOVING GOD. NO FEAR.
ALL of God's blessings are FREE. They're NOT for sale. NO FEAR.
Jesus death and resurrection ARE sufficient. His grace IS SUFFICIENT to save us...
We need NOTHING and NO ONE ELSE (Hebrews 7:25). NO FEAR.
There's NO OTHER NAME, besides "Jesus" whereby we must be saved.
Therefore WE CAN TRUST JESUS COMPLETELY FOR SALVATION, and no denomination, group, fraternity, study group, or whatever else they call themselves... saves us. NO FEAR.
Christians are free to worship God anywhere they want, any day they want, including Sunday. NO FEAR.
The Church will be safely in heaven, before God's Throne, when the tribulation judgments begin (Revelation 7:9).
Therefore neither the tribulation, nor the reign of Antichrist, will affect Christ's Church. NO FEAR.
God's Word COMMANDS US, 365 TIMES, to "FEAR NOT".
Because fear is NOT of God.
Consequently, ANY DOCTRINE that inspires FEAR, instead of TRUST (faith) IS NOT OF GOD.
That doctrine MUST BE REJECTED.
Do you want to KNOW, FOR SURE, which doctrine is TRUE and which is FALSE?
Submit it to the FEAR TEST.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 3, 2015
WILL THE HOLY SPIRIT BE REMOVED?
The standard teaching in prophecy circles is that the Holy Spirit is holding back the Antichrist, and that, when the Church is raptured, the Holy Spirit will be REMOVED from the earth thus allowing him to manifest.
That's what you get for listening to those who constantly say "I believe", instead of "God's Word says".
The Bible SAYS NO SUCH THING.
If the Spirit were removed, NO ONE would be saved during the tribulation. We know that MANY will come to faith in Christ during the reign of Antichrist [Revelation 20:4].
HOW ON EARTH do you "remove" the Holy Spirit?
Last time I checked the Holy Spirit was/is God. God is OMNIPRESENT.
King David told us in Psalms 139:7, 8 that even if he were to make his bed IN HELL, the Spirit of God would still be there.
Do you think the Holy Spirit was ABSENT from the earth until Pentecost?
Of course not! He was around. He's ALWAYS been around (Genesis 1:2).
What happened on Pentecost is He came to LIVE INSIDE those who received Jesus as their Lord, as Jesus had promised.
That STILL HAPPENS TODAY whenever a person is born-again.
The "he" that MUST be "taken out of the way" BEFORE Antichrist can show up is THE BODY OF CHRIST:
"Let no one deceive you in any way, for it (in context, the Day of the Lord or tribulation) will not be UNLESS THE DEPARTURE COMES FIRST, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of destruction" (2 Thessalonians 2:3).
The Church at Thessalonica was troubled that the Day of the Lord (tribulation) was about to begin (2 Thessalonians 2:2).
Paul said two things needed to happen PRIOR:
1. The Departure [Rapture] had to happen.
2. The identity of Antichrist had to be revealed (in context, to believers, since he was writing to the church at Thessalonica).
The Antichrist is revealed to believers BEFORE THEY DEPART. The Antichrist is revealed to the world (unbelievers) when he emerges, resurrected, from the bottomless pit, about 3½ years PRIOR TO the Second Coming of Christ [Revelation 11:7; 17:8].
Paul was saying that as long as the Church is AROUND, and the identity of the Antichrist hasn't been revealed to the Church, the Day of the Lord (tribulation) cannot come.
The identity of Antichrist has ALREADY been revealed to the Church, ALL OVER THE WORLD : www.christconnection.net/id7.html
Therefore, THE ONLY THING hindering the Antichrist's appearance (2 Thessalonians 2:6) is the Body of Christ (Church) still being present on earth.
He cannot manifest in, or to the world, UNTIL The Departure of the Church takes place.
I am mindful that the King James and other versions render this passage as "a falling away". However, in the original Greek NOTHING is "falling away" from nowhere. The words ho apostasia literally mean "THE Departure".
It's ONLY AFTER we disappear, that Antichrist appears.
Simply put, YOU CAN'T "remove God" or "take GOD out of the way"... EVER.
The Holy Spirit is PRESENT everywhere, ALL THE TIME, tribulation or no tribulation, Antichrist or no Antichrist.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 2015
Many of the emails we receive reveal JUST HOW LAZY and anemic Christians in the Western Hemisphere have become.
They want us to "pray" for ANY and EVERY thing - from their sins, to their apathy, to their losing weight, to every silly need that arises in their life.
I CAN'T PRAY about each and everything that happens in a person's life. It's impossible.
There are only 24 hours in a day. I'd be praying 'round the clock, non-stop, and would have time FOR NOTHING ELSE.
Do you realize HOW SUPREMELY SELFISH it is to burden us with those DUMB prayer requests, WHEN THERE ARE PEOPLE WITH REAL, DESPERATE needs, WHO DO NEED our PRAYERS?
This ministry will honor SERIOUS prayer requests: if someone's experiencing serious health issues, is going through painful divorce, spousal abuse, economic distress, suicidal, etc.
And we may cut SOME slack to baby Christians who make prayer requests for minor things, BECAUSE THEY'RE BABIES WHO ONLY RECENTLY FOUND JESUS.
I know of NO BABY who STARTS WALKING the moment he or she is born. I know of NO BABY who can EVEN STAND as soon as he/she is born.
However, if you've been Christian for three years or longer, YOU'RE NO LONGER A BABY.
And if you are, SOMETHING'S seriously WRONG.
There are no magic wands in the Kingdom of God.
There ARE MIRACLES, but those are usually connected to illnesses or dire circumstances BEYOND OUR CONTROL.
God gives each of us FREE WILL. He also gives us COMMON SENSE.
If you're applying for a job - unless you've been unemployed for a long, long time, and in dire financial straits - you DON'T NEED ME to pray for that.
Prepare for the interview, dress appropriately, and be ON TIME. Be truthful, assertive and direct. Your attitude and demeanor should be "I'm here to help and be an asset, not just to get a paycheck".
Take it to Jesus YOURSELF, put it in His hands, and TRUST Him to guide your steps and lead you to the perfect job, according to His will.
If you're fortunate enough to work from home, and want to stay in shape, walk around the block a few times, take a few laps around the pool each day, or step on a treadmill for a while.
You don't need me to pray about that. YOU don't even need to pray about that.
What you need to do is EXERCISE YOUR FREE WILL:
GET OFF YOUR FAT, LAZY BEHIND and CHOOSE TO do these things.
If you're vulnerable to one particular reoccurring sin, you don't need me to pray about it. WHAT YOU NEED is to realize that JESUS ALREADY PAID FOR all ONE MILLION TIMES that you committed that sin.
TRUST that He HAS YOU COVERED - with His Blood, NO LESS.
Provided, of course, that you have invited Him into your heart, and that HE LIVES IN you.
By virtue of Jesus' ETERNAL Sacrifice, God is NOT COUNTING ANY sins against you (2 Corinthians 5:19).
YOU may know that you committed that sin 999,875 times. GOD SAYS YOU ARE AS RIGHTEOUS AS HE IS (2 Corinthians 5:21).
You KNOW that ON YOUR OWN, you're NOT, but HE SAYS that YOU ARE.
Shut up, and BE GRATEFUL for HIS amazing GIFT of ETERNAL Salvation!
When you do, when you become THOROUGHLY CONVINCED OF these truths, sin will become LESS and LESS alluring.
If you want to lose weight, you don't need me to pray about that.
NO ONE is hungry 24/7.
If you're CONSTANTLY shoving food into your mouth, that is a symptom that you're compensating for "emptiness" in some OTHER area of your life:
Some of the common causes for this "emptiness" are lack of affection (we don't get the affection we crave or need from others), sexual dissatisfaction, frustration or lack of satisfaction with your job performance, lack of recognition/validation by those near and dear to you, lack of self-esteem, lack of purpose in one's life, just plain boredom -- or some combination of these.
You need to get alone with God somewhere, and HONESTLY analyze your feelings to determine FROM WHERE this sense of "emptiness" is coming.
Identifying the "culprit" is AT LEAST HALF of winning the battle.
The other half, of course, is doing something to FILL THE VOID once you've discovered what it is.
This ministry's purpose is to bring souls into Jesus' Kingdom and to EDIFY and STRENGTHEN those who're already in it, SO THAT THEY CAN STAND on their own two feet SPIRITUALLY.
We're not involved in God's business to create a bunch of immature, co-dependent, religious weaklings, who need OTHERS to pray for them all the time, but STRONG, INDEPENDENT believers, who can stand and EXERCISE AUTHORITY OVER their own lives and circumstances.
We want STRONG BELIEVERS who can DO THEIR OWN PRAYING.
I WANT YOU TO DEPEND ON JESUS, NOT on me.
And if you received Christ INTO your heart, He has LIVED IN YOU ALL THE TIME, since that very moment.
You need to seek, commune with, and DEPEND ON the INNER Jesus who LIVES IN YOU 24/7.
You have access to the same Jesus as I, the same Bible as I, the same Holy Spirit as I, and you have a born-again spirit just as I have.
I don't pray vain or idle prayers.
When I pray, I MEAN BUSINESS.
I'm NOT going to waste my extremely valuable time, faith, and spiritual capital praying for minor things THAT YOU, as a born-again, Jesus indwelt child of God SHOULD BE ABLE TO HANDLE ON YOUR OWN.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 1, 2015
THE SECRET PLACE
"He that DWELLS IN THE SECRET PLACE of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty" (Psalm 91:1)
God has a SECRET place .
As the psalmist says, those who LIVE in His secret place, abide under His shadow.
They are IMMUNE to all of Satan's attacks, and to all the evils that befall this fallen earth realm:
They DO NOT fear ANYTHING that may go on around them, for they are protected by the Almighty.
A thousand fall at their side, and TEN THOUSAND at their right hand, but it DOES NOT COME NEAR THEM (Psalm 91:7).
If you want THE SIMPLE ANSWER to "why do BAD things happen TO GODLY people"?
It's because THEY DON'T KNOW where that secret place is located.
"My people PERISH for LACK OF KNOWLEDGE" (Hosea 4.6)
And the very few WHO DO KNOW the location of that "secret place", have become too lazy and lethargic to even TRY to live there.
That secret place was revealed to us in the New Testament, through the born-again experience.
That "secret place" is the born-again SPIRIT.
When we're born-again our spirit which was disconnected from God, becomes RECONNECTED (John 3:3-7;1 Peter 1:23).
Our spirit which was "dead" (disconnected from THE Life) COMES ALIVE.
Christ Himself COMES TO LIVE IN us, in that secret place (Ephesians 3:17).
He LIVES IN us 24/7, no matter HOW we may act ON THE OUTSIDE.
Problem is, evangelicals move heaven and earth to get people born-again - and thank God for it!
But THE MOMENT they become born-again THEY FORGET ALL ABOUT IT, and NEVER AGAIN try to EXPERIENCE - LET ALONE LIVE IN - "that secret place" IN OUR INNERMOST BEING.
They don't show ANY interest in STAYING CONNECTED and TUNED IN to the INNER Christ.
Thus, they live in spiritual blindness and ignorance, and become DULL of hearing.
They COULD walk in the light, they COULD gain spiritual insight, and they COULD regain spiritual "hearing".
But they LOSE INTEREST in their born-again spirit AS SOON AS they become born-again.
Worse, the very pastors, evangelists, and so-called "Church leaders", who should be TEACHING THAT INNER CONNECTION with the LIVING, ETERNAL Christ, and that we must STAY CONNECTED to Him - ARE IGNORANT of it themselves, ignorant of the spirit, and OBLIVIOUS to God's secret place.
Consequently, they themselves are DEAF and BLIND.
The blind are leading THE BLINDER.
The human spirit, as I've shared with you often, is presently located IN THE CENTER OF our being:
It's in the stomach-kidney area (Job 32:18-19; Psalm 16:7; Proverbs 20:27; Daniel 7:15; John 7:37- 39).
According to Psalm 51:6 it's in that secret place where God imparts to us His Wisdom.
The SPIRIT has a mind of His own, which is the Mind of Christ (Romans 8:6,27; 1 Corinthians 2:6-16; Philippians 2:5).
His mind THINKS INDEPENDENTLY OF the natural, human mind (Romans 8:27).
As Isaiah tells us, His thoughts are HIGHER than our thoughts, His ways HIGHER than our ways (Isaiah 55:9).
What SEEMS "impossible" to the LOWER, natural mind, IS ENTIRELY POSSIBLE and ACHIEVABLE to the HIGHER Mind of the spirit.
Satan CAN read the natural, human mind, since he himself infiltrated it and infected it with sin in the Garden of Eden.
But Satan is NOT privy to what goes on in that secret place.
What happens there, what is SPOKEN there, what is REVEALED there, is STRICTLY BETWEEN YOU AND GOD.
And, while God may, at some point, tell you to share some of that private communication with others, THAT IS WHERE HE AND YOU COMMUNE PRIVATELY and INTIMATELY.
I've been trying to convey this tremendous Truth to the Body of Christ FOR THE PAST DECADE.
In over 10 years, I've had ONE - repeat, ONE - individual who showed ANY interest by inquiring further about it.
I replied to his email and haven't heard from him since.
This is so sad, and so disheartening.
It has been LIKE TALKING TO A WALL.
This is why the Church is steeped in mediocrity.
This is why it's feckless and anemic.
That is why it has become largely IRRELEVANT.
This is why it's being DEVOURED by the world.
Because it keeps LOOKING FOR GOD ON THE OUTSIDE, while ignoring His Presence INSIDE.
And the great tragedy is THAT Christians DON'T SHOW THE SLIGHTEST INTEREST in snapping out of their spiritual slumber.
Body of Christ, you don't know WHAT you're missing!
Communing with God in that "secret place", BEING a member of God's Inner Circle is such awesome privilege! (Psalm 27:5; 31:20; 81:7)
It's such priceless experience!
WHY ON EARTH would you NOT be interested in that intimate fellowship with Him?
WHY would you PAY THOUSANDS of dollars to play golf at some earthly private club, or thousands "per plate" to shake hands with a corrupt politician for 30 seconds, and DELIBERATELY FOREGO the privilege of belonging to this SPECIAL CLUB that has direct access to God 24/7?
WHY would you settle for being AN OUTSIDER, when you can be an INSIDER?
God Himself told us OF THE SHEER BLESSEDNESS of living in that state :
"Because he HAS SET HIS LOVE UPON ME, therefore WILL I DELIVER HIM: I WILL SET HIM ON HIGH, because HE HAS KNOWN my name.
He shall call upon me, and I WILL ANSWER HIM: I will be with him in trouble; I WILL DELIVER HIM, AND HONOR HIM.
With long life WILL I SATISFY HIM, AND SHOW HIM MY SALVATION" (Psalm 91:14-16).
His Salvation, which He will SHOW TO US when we live in His secret place, IS JESUS.
The Apostle John got hold of this Truth and said:
"We know that whoever IS BORN OF God sins not; but HE THAT IS BORN OF God KEEPS HIMSELF (in His born-again secret place), and THE EVIL ONE TOUCHES HIM NOT".
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