The Person of the Word

bibleOne of the most amazing Bible passages to me is John 1:1-5, 14. The Wuest Expanded Translation really puts things into a new perspective. “In the beginning the Word was existing. And the Word was in fellowship with God the Father. And the Word as to his existence was absolute deity. This Word was in the beginning in fellowship with God the Father. All things through His intermediate agency came to being, and without  Him there came into being not even one thing which was come into existence. In Him life was existing. And this aforementioned life was the light of men. And the light in the darkness was constantly shining. And the darkness did not overwhelm it.”

Before we read verse fourteen, let’s look at Genesis 1:2, 3-5, 14-19 NKJV “…and darkness was on the face of the deep…And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. 14 And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years, 15 and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth.” And it was so. 16 And God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars. 17 And God set them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, 18 to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19 And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day.”

Before there was ever sun, moon and stars there was light and the light was the pre-incarnate Jesus.

John 1:14 (Wuest) “And the Word, entering a new mode of existence, became flesh, and lived in a tent [His physical body] among us. And we gazed with attentive and careful regard and spiritual perception at His glory, a glory such as that of a uniquely-begotten Son from the Father, full of grace and truth”.

This just makes my brain go crazy, the bigness of our savior Jesus is amazing. Too many times when I pick up my Bible I treat it like a book and not the living person that the book is. When I sit down with my Bible I am actually sitting down with Jesus himself.

It is too easy to just mentally agree with the verses in John, we must do more than that. We must receive the reality of the person-hood of the Bible into our lives.

Many times we can pick up our Bible read and not receive anything from the reading. I believe that happens because much of the time we pick up a book and don’t enter a conversation with the person.

Scripture says Jesus was tempted in every manner we are yet did not sin, that tells me there is victory in the Word to defeat every temptation. Just reading Romans six helps us to develop a mindset of victory.

When he have difficulty getting in the Word we need to go to prayer and ask that the Person of the Word would come alive to us.

If we want to develop the love of the Word Psalms 119 talks about we must approach the Word as the Person of Jesus our savior, redeemer, healer, and teacher.

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Healing America’s Divide

all lives matterMy heart breaks for this nation which seems to become more and more divided by the day. This has been a horrific week in America and all I can say is God, we need you. This is not about black versus white, this is not cop versus citizen, all lives matter.

The facts in the cases regarding two black men being shot are not fully known and an investigation is under way, yet that did not stop thugs from gunning down officers in Dallas last night. I honestly don’t know what to say. We need love and respect for each other in our nation again. We are so polarized with left and right we are tearing each other apart. I fear we are headed for another civil war.

I have a suggestion for us; if you are on the Christian right, read some books by those on the left. If you are on the Christian left read books by those on the right. We need to enlarge our circles. It’s no secret I’m a conservative but the truth is there will be liberals in Heaven. There are those on the left who love Jesus they just apply the teaching of loving your neighbor differently than I do.

There used to be a day in America where the left and right had the same principles but different methods, big government and smaller government. Nowadays it seems the chasm between the two is so big no one can get across.

Can we just agree that not every cop is bad, not every black is a suspect, and not every white is a racist?

Is there any common ground between us anymore? If we are in Christ the answer is yes. Can I tell you the answer for our nation is not Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, or a third party. The answer for our nation is for the Church to be the Church.

The left and the right need to get back to the place of civility and understanding one another. We must call out all leaders who try to divide us by race, politics, or social class. It is crucial for us to listen to one another, not for the ability to argue but for the purpose of understanding.

I don’t believe that by listening to each other we will be converting each others politics but I do believe we will be able to find common ground. I don’t think any sensible person would want a cop who has done wrong to go free or for a black man who has done wrong to go free. I support any civilians right to stand trial and I also support the same for a cop who used his gun because he saw no alternative, in both cases, the law and courts should provide justice not vigilantes.

The Church in America right now needs to come together and get on our knees for our nation, for the upcoming election and for racial healing. In the upper room the disciples were in unity and the Holy Spirit came. In order for healing to come to our nation the Church must come together.

The ball is in our court. As much as I disagree with the left, I picked up some books today written by leaders of the Christian left, I will read, I will learn, my goal is to find common ground, I will pray for the healing of our nation and the unity of the Church.

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Developing and Sustaining Joy

ESVPsalm 119:11 ESV “Your testimonies are my heritage forever, for they are the joy of my heart”.

Psalm 119:9-10 MSG “How can a young person live a clean life? By carefully reading the map of your Word. I’m single-minded in pursuit of you; don’t let me miss the road signs you’ve posted.”

If we are to find our joy In God we must make reading and studying the Bible a priority in our lives. The Bible is basically history, wisdom, and letters written from God to us. In order to know Him we need to be familiar with what He’s written to us.

The book of Psalms alone is full of such joy, not just in good times but it helps us learn to develop joy in negative situations. Philippians is a book all about joy and Paul wrote it from prison.

Real and lasting joy is not based in circumstance but relationship with God. The fifth chapter of Desiring God is all about how Scripture is the kindling of Joy. The longest chapter in the Bible, Psalm 119 is all about Scripture itself.

God never promised us a life of ease, but He has promised us blessing. Yet even in the midst of blessings we can face things. How was Paul writing about joy in prison? He found His joy in relationship not circumstance.

James 1:2-4 AMP ” Consider it nothing but joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing.”

Reading the Scripture chapter in Desiring God has reminded me again of the importance of time in the word. The Bible is not simply a tool to receive health or finances, life is life and the ups and downs happen to all of us and without being anchored in the Word of God, without knowing God is God we will never be able to sustain our joy even in the midst of hard times, just look at the life of Job.

Many times we wonder why our prayers aren’t answered, we make sure we use a verse. Maybe instead of using a verse or two in our prayers at times and in certain situations we should just pray the Word without our spin on it, without our desired outcome attached to it.

When we pray and sing the Word our attitude changes, our atmosphere changes. It’s the Word of God that changes us.

If you feel distant in your relationship with God, read through some of the Psalms, we see every emotion one could have, yet regardless of what was going on David always relied on God.

We can be like David, Job, and Paul. No matter what we are going through we can develop and sustain our joy through time in God’s Word.

“Normal Christian life is a repeated process of restoration and renewal. Our joy is not static. It fluctuates with real life. It is vulnerable to satan’s attacks”. “But the Holy Spirit has given us a sword called the Word of God for the defense of our joy”.  – John Piper, Desiring God

*click here for Bible study resources

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Thoughts on Our Nation’s Culture

communityI’ve been thinking, praying, and reading different posts about what happened in Orlando. I’ve watched another gun control debate erupt. I’ve watched leaders ignore the Islamist extremist aspect of what happened, and I’ve seen so called Christians take this opportunity to say God did this because He doesn’t like gays.

First of all as a Christian I want to say that I am standing with the gay community. No one should be murdered for their sexual orientation. My prayers are with the family that lost loved ones and those injured for a speedy recovery.

In today’s society everyone responds to something immediately as it happens because the quicker you get it out there the quicker and more times you can get liked and shared.

I want to address more than the attack, I want to address our culture and nation as a whole. Many are angry at government and each other. Many of the reasons to be angry with leaders is justified, but I have to say as a whole I think we are losing our humanity, we are losing respect for fellow human beings. I will proudly stand with the gay community’s right to live the lifestyle they choose without fear of being beaten or murdered. I don’t have to agree with their lifestyle to support their safety.

Somewhere along the way many of us have bought into the lie that in order to be civil to one another we must agree, what page is that on?

We can look at the two major political parties and both of them are in turmoil and both of them are eating their own. I believe in large part this is due to lack of human decency in society and specifically a lack of love.

As followers of Jesus we are called to love everyone, regardless of if we agree with them or not.

John 13:34-35 ESV “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

Mark 12:30-31 ESV “ And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

We need love for our fellow citizens back in our country again. We need mutual respect for those we disagree with again. Earlier this week the letter written by President George H. W. Bush to President Bill Clinton was released. It was a warm and respectful letter. The men had just fought on the campaign trail and Clinton won. These were the last words of that letter, “you are our President now  and I wish you and your family all the best”.

It’s time for us to love again. We may disagree with peoples politics, choices, religious beliefs or whatever, but we are called to love.

The hope for our nation is not President Trump or President Clinton, the hope of our nation is found in love and mutual respect for each other. The hope of our nation is found in God.

As heated as things are in this nation on every level, the election cycle is just magnifying what has been simmering for years, we need to take time to step back and love.

Love is the answer to restore our nation. Before things can be fixed politically, economically, or anything else, we must love each other.

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Moving Forward, Through Deliverance

deliveranceDeliverance as defined in the Webster’s 1828 dictionary means; release from captivity, slavery, oppression, or any restraint. To rescue from danger or evil. It also means to bring forth children and the act of giving or transferring from one to another.

John 8:31-36 NIV “To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 33 They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?” 34 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35 Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”

The Church leaders of Jesus’ day were always getting mad about something he was teaching or doing and for the most part that is still true today. This is why in order for the body to move forward we must be delivered from old mindsets and old ways of doing things.

John 8:37-47 NIV “I know that you are Abraham’s descendants. Yet you are looking for a way to kill me, because you have no room for my word. 38 I am telling you what I have seen in the Father’s presence, and you are doing what you have heard from your father.” 39 “Abraham is our father,” they answered. “If you were Abraham’s children,” said Jesus, “then you would do what Abraham did. 40 As it is, you are looking for a way to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. Abraham did not do such things. 41 You are doing the works of your own father.” “We are not illegitimate children,” they protested. “The only Father we have is God himself.” 42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me. 43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. 44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me! 46 Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? 47 Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.”

Those of us who follow Jesus need to check ourselves on a regular basis to make sure we are following the example of how disciples followed Jesus and not the example of how the Church leaders rejected everything He was doing.

In order to move forward, the first thing we must do is continually develop in God’s way of thinking and doing. Jesus told the story of the old wineskin bursting because of new wine. God is doing a new thing, yet many of us are trying to move in the same way our parents and grandparents moved. While we honor what God did in the past we must recognize God is always moving us forward and He’s doing that in new ways.

Secondly, we must get on God’s calendar and in His timing. We have talked about this before and we will review here. Constantine took from the Church it’s Jewish roots and from that we entered the dark ages of the power of God being absent from the Church.

Jesus told the religious leaders they had a form of godliness but denied the power. We, even in the Pentecostal and charismatic have denied parts of God’s power. To restore that power we must be restored to the Jewish roots of our faith. (See Romans 11).

We must be willing to submit to God’s process. We have to be willing to let go of our traditions, doctrines, our old wineskins in order to move forward.

James says, submit yourself to God, resist the devil and he will flee. Too many of us try resisting the devil without being submitted to God. There is an order in which we must follow in order to move forward.

Right now submit to God. Ask Holy Spirit to show you what places you are out of step with God’s plan and God’s time. Repent of those areas, cast out the enemy and ask Holy Spirit to cleanse you and renew your mind.

Get into the Word and renew your mind and allow Holy Spirit to dismantle any old wineskin you have functioned in.

We move forward on step at a time. Take a step, then take another.

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The Kingdom of God

Jesus todayHow should we picture the Kingdom of God? Or by what story shall we present it?

Interesting question isn’t it? It’s one Jesus asked His disciples.

I think an answer to that is eating with tax collectors and sinners.  Yes, I know today we have certain things in place that help us stay on the path of our walk. At times I wonder though, if our path keeps us from the very people we are to reach.

Have you ever heard the phrase, “guard your witness’? It’s a phrase to admonish us not to be seen near a liquor store, never offer to hold someone’s beer, don’t offer anyone a light.

If I were to be talking to someone at Starbucks about Jesus and they said they were getting hungry and asked me to go eat at the Drunken Donkey, should I say no because it “ruins my witness”? Or would it actually ruin my witness to say no to someone I was sharing the love of Jesus with?

The Pharisees took the teaching of the Torah and added a bunch of stuff to it. It was all the “bunch of stuff” Jesus and His disciples were always accused of breaking. “Why don’t you follow the tradition of the elders?” This is my paraphrase here, “Because tradition isn’t Torah”.

I’m all about living a holy life because Scripture tells me to but as I read Mark’s gospel the other day I began to see that Jesus did things way different than we do today. For one thing there is the eating with sinners thing. We can be so concerned with ruining our witness that we actually have no witness.

Jesus was moved with compassion and healed people. Often times we are moved to judgment to condemn people. Jesus walked in love and those of us who are Jesus followers should walk the same way.

Every time Jesus preached he followed up His message with a time of healing people and casting out demons. When was the last time we saw that in a church service?

It’s time that as Jesus followers we become more focused on His Kingdom and not our denomination. We need unity not infighting. I read so many articles about the church in America being in decline could it be because we are not Kingdom focused? Could it be because we’ve given up a gospel of power for a gospel of intellectual doctrine?

As Followers of Jesus I challenge each of us to spend regular time reading the gospels. I think it will change the way we do and see church.

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Learning and Growing

personal growthProverbs 4:7 (Amplified Bible) “The beginning of Wisdom is: get Wisdom (skillful and godly Wisdom)! [For skillful and godly Wisdom is the principal thing.] And with all you have gotten, get understanding (discernment, comprehension, and interpretation).”

This was the verse that was on my mind this morning. Actually, just the phrase, “in all your getting, get understanding”, then I looked up the verse in the Amplified.

A few days ago I heard Bill Johnson make a statement, in affect saying, you can gauge your maturity level based on what you allow to offend you. That statement hit me really hard. I think too many times I can be so worried about making sure what I’m reading or studying is right, or that those I listen to agree on certain issues that I can at times miss what God wants to say simply because I get uncomfortable.

Scripture tells us to seek wisdom and understanding, but what happens when the wisdom and understanding is presented in such a way that stretches us?

I like Bill Johnson, there are some things I’ve seen I haven’t agreed with, but am I going to allow that to cause me to throw out that which is good?

I believe there are things that are non negotiable, there are reasons to not listen to someone. The truth is because we all have different personalities, different filters, and beliefs that will differ from person to person.

I think part of learning and growing though is listening to, reading, and talking with people who don’t exactly see things the exact way we do.

I recently read a book called, The Year of Living Like Jesus. Ed Dobson lived a full calendar year like Jesus. He voted for Obama in 2008 and in the book he gave his reasons why. He based his decision on Scripture. I disagree with that decision, even his reasoning, but I understand why he voted how he did. I also recently read a book by Donald Miller, another individual whom I have theological and political disagreement with, but I learned some things by reading his book.

Wisdom and understanding will not always come how we think it should, or from the person we think it should. But in order to grow we will have to be willing to hear, read and discuss with people we typically wouldn’t. God has a big family and maybe we should get to know other members of the family. After all, Heaven will not be divided up by denomination or political affiliation.

 

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Quick thought on modern day Pentecostalism

blModern day Pentecostalism, known as charismatic is seen in the eyes of the charismatic renewal and third wave movement and has been largely removed from classical Pentecostalism.

 
The problem with understanding the movement apart from its origins is that we lose the holiness roots of our founding.

 
I would encourage every charismatic individual, everyone who sees themselves as part of the Word-of-Faith movement and every other modern charismatic movement to take the time and revisit the roots of the movement.

 
Pentecostalism sprang from the holiness movement of John Wesley and without a holiness foundation Pentecostals and charismatic’s put themselves in a dangerous place spiritually.

 
I believe the reason we so much sin among the movement is because we have largely abandoned our holiness roots.
I would encourage all of us to revisit Wesley and our holiness roots.

 
a good place to start is Dayton’s Theological Roots of Pentecostalism.

 
If we want to see the supernatural we have to be living right. When we get back to holiness we will see a move of God.

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Thoughts on Overcoming Division

black and whiteI sit here trying to write a Thanksgiving post and I can’t. The only thing on my mind is the racial division being propagated in our nation and how the blood of Jesus atones and overcomes all injustice.

 
It would be foolish to say there isn’t racism in the nation because there are racist people. However, I do believe we have made great strides to overcome racism in the nation, unfortunately, there will always be those who will not progress in God’s love and accept the truth that all people regardless of color are made in the image of God.

 
Even some in the Church refer to a black church, a white church, a Hispanic church, there is only one Church; color does not matter, denominations don’t matter, even certain doctrinal points don’t matter.

 
If we as the Church are going to help bring healing to our land there are a few things we must do.

 
The first of course is to love one another as Christ has loved us. When we see racism being propagated on campuses we need to come in with the love of God, hear grievances, find truth, and bring healing.

 
We must call out those who name Christ and propagate divide in this nation. We are all God’s creation and everyone deserves to be judged on the content of their character.

 
The verse that keeps coming to mind is, they overcame him by the blood of the lamb and the word of their testimony.

 

The only way to overcome racism is to acknowledge that we don’t have a racism epidemic but a small part of society that are truly racist. When we choose to acknowledge that we are greater than them we can neutralize the effect.

 
We must acknowledge two other things that play into this issue. The majority of cops are not bad apples. Do a few cops do bad things, yes, but those who paint with a broad brush are creating a greater divide not facilitating healing.

 
We also need and must acknowledge that political correctness and a belief that words hurt us is also increasing the divide. We are all big people and we must come to a grown up place by repeating the childish phrase, sticks and stones will break my bones but words can never hurt me.

 
At the end of the day we stop racism by not using a microscope, not overcoming bad apples and under covering the good guys. We stop it by calling out the Al Sharpton’s of the world. We overcome by loving as Christ loved, we overcome by acknowledging the strides we have made and by choosing to work together.

 
What are your thoughts? How do we bring healing, together?

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Why it’s NOT a gun problem

gun lockLast week there was a shooting at an Oregon college and like clockwork liberals came out demanding more gun control before anyone knew what happened. The issue is not guns, the issue is the heart of man and that is what I want to primarily deal with in this post.

 
Before I address those issues I want to honor Chris Mintz, the hero who took down the shooter after he himself had been shot five times. Many in our culture have strange definitions of hero these days, to clarify what the word means, Chris Mintz’s picture is next to the word in the dictionary not Bruce Jenner’s.

 
Genesis 4:6-8 NIV “Then the LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it. Now Cain said to his brother Abel, let us go out to the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.”

 
The issue now, as it was then, was an issue of the heart not a weapon. You do not need a gun to kill, cause harm, or instill fear. The heart of man without God consciousness is evil.

 
The gun does not kill, a gun is not bad. A weapon can be good or bad it depends on whose hands the gun is in. Paul persecuted the Church until he met Jesus, people who do violence with guns cannot blame the gun, seller, or manufacturer, you can’t even blame the NRA, people must take personal responsibility.

 
When the shooting took place in Carolina the media and the administration blamed racism and the confederate flag, yet in the Oregon shooting it’s the guns fault. By and large it’s ignored that he targeted Christian’s, it’s ignored that he had a picture on Facebook with an ISIS flag in the corner.

 
Violence with a gun or any other kind ultimately goes to the issue of the heart, it ultimately speaks to the sinfulness of man and it speaks to the fact that there is hope in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

 
In this nation we are in a spiritual battle. John 10:10 says the thief (the devil) comes to steal, kill, and destroy. Jesus came to give life and life more abundant.

 
When we removed God from society is when things went down hill, we used to pray over the loud speaker, students used to not get hassled for praying at football games.

 
The Ten Commandments were removed in the dark of night in Oklahoma yesterday, while in broad daylight Chicago raised a statue of the devil. Good is now evil and evil is now being called good in this nation.

 
The Church must wake up, we are losing the greatest country in the world! We must bring America back to its moral roots. No one candidate can save America. We the People will save America through humility, love, repentance, and prayer.

 
the Church must engage again!

 
Our founders were decedents of the French Huguenots. The Huguenots were told they could worship God if they gave up their guns and that the government would protect them. The Huguenots did, the next day the government slaughtered them. This is why our founders put the second amendment in the Constitution.

 
Regardless of what progressives say, regardless of the false statistics they claim more gun laws will not solve an issue that begins in the heart. More gun laws will not prevent crime, they will not prevent shooting deaths. Chicago has some of the strictest gun laws in the country yet look at how many deaths occur with guns there. It is also mostly black on black crime, but I guess those black lives don’t matter because they don’t fit a race narrative.

 
If we want to solve the issue of mass murders we must solve a mental health problem, if we want to solve mental health, we must address the anger issue. In order to address the anger in culture, in order to address the wedge driven between race we must address the underlying issue to all these issues, the breakdown of the family.

 
Whether progressives want to admit it or not we need a strong family structure, God did not intend for women to be single mothers, He did not intend for children to grow up without a father.

 
Church, we must address the breakdown of the family. We should not have divorce care without marriage counseling first. We must preach biblical values, we must speak to the culture, we must say the Bible addresses these issues, this is the good and right way. When we do that our nation will be back on the right track. The Church must engage, our society, our nation, our world depends on it.

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Recovering the Conscience of a Nation

american-flagYesterday, I watched as Ms. Richards, the president of Planned Parenthood was questioned by a congressional committee. I felt sick as I watched. She admitted facilities did not have mammogram machines. She evaded the matter at hand by saying her employees were illegally tapped. There is plenty I could say on what went on yesterday, sufficed to say it seems like the nation at large looks away. sixty five percent of people say we should continue to fund them with tax payer money, it’s clear they don’t need it, what’s more, they don’t deserve it. Click here for more on Planned Parenthood.

 
Not only is this going on in our nation, something just as sad is going on. Sgt. 1st Class Charles Martland is set to be discharged. Why you may ask, for intervening to stop the rape of a boy. You read that right, a member of our military is being discharged for doing the right thing. Yes, some say he used force he shouldn’t have. He was told not to intervene, he was forced to listen to boys be raped night after night. Finally, like any decent human being he couldn’t set back any longer. Thank God, no young boy deserves to be abused night after night. Shame on those who told our great men and women not to intervene. Now two republican lawmakers are doing the right thing by demanding he not be discharged.

 
As if these two stories aren’t enough, I came across this column by Matt Walsh on a mother giving her fourteen year old son estrogen patches because she has been helping him become a girl. Please read this column, we must wake up to the liberal/progressive manipulation of our culture.

 
Folks, are nation is upside down and I don’t care what progressives tell us, we are a moral people and America is an exceptional nation. If we go back through history we see that it is progressive ideology and policy that pulls us down. The Obama administration has taken us backwards in race relations. Cops are being attacked and killed, we are on the verge of experiencing race riots in this nation, Ferguson is only the beginning.

 
I am not here to be a doom and gloom guy. Just like in the days of the Reagan revolution, I believe we are in a time for the grass roots to rise again and reignite the promise of America.

 
I believe that if each of us as every day American’s will rise up and unite together we can see our nation back on the path of morality and prosperity.

 
We must first hold ourselves accountable for our lack of involvement in the political system and we must educate ourselves and get involved.

 
Secondly, we must hold our leaders to their principles and promises.

 
I believe if we will humble ourselves, respect one another, regardless of differences we can see greatness in America again, we will restore our standing in the world.

 
There may be tough times ahead and yes it will take some time to get the nation back on a moral and economically prosperous track. That will happen as we the people unite together under our first principles. Regardless of republican or democrat, regardless of black, white, Hispanic, whatever. Regardless of whatever differences we must unite on principle, the principles found in our constitution, we must rally together. Together we will see the greatness of America again.

 
Don’t listen to a media that tries to divide us by color. Don’t listen to a media that pits candidates against each other. We are on the same side, or we should be. How can we expect the nation to return to conscience if we don’t return the conscience of our conservatism? We must remember we are all on the same team, let’s return to our principles so we can see America once again be that shining city on a hill, the example of peace and prosperity to the rest of the world.

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Bringing Healing in the Land

americaAnother undercover video has been released. The atrocities of Planned Parenthood are unbelievable. However, there is something even more unbelievable, the silence of Christian leaders, magazines, and television shows.

 
If my people will humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from my wicked ways, THEN I will hear from heaven, forgive their sin and heal their land. It’s not the world that needs to repent it’s the Church. We are the ones who have largely been silent, we are the ones in all ball in the corner crying out for the rapture to get out of this bad old world.

 
Stop it! God loves this country and this people, stand up! We need to quit crying about what the government isn’t doing. Churches and non-profits need to step up and start helping the poor and those who have come to hard times, that’s why we’re here, that’s our deal not the governments.

 
It saddens me how quiet the Church has been on these videos, but the truth is God won’t heal the land, America won’t find its way back to greatness until we do our part. It’s time for us to rise up as we the people and start honoring God and our values. It’s time to speak loud to be heard, no more setting on the side lines, our nation can’t afford it.

 
It’s time to get informed, it’s time to get involved. I’m not talking about making everyone believe the exact same thing, I’m saying each of us have a part to play. God has put each of us in this nation for a purpose. We can all do something and as important as prayer is, we must do more than prayer. Faith without corresponding action is dead, get out and do something.

 
I’ve noticed lately that the those on the Christian left have been getting articles out about separating Jesus from the Christian right, not allowing your faith to be co-opted by politics. Wake up, they are trying to guilt, condemn, whatever word you want to use. They are trying to intimidate conservative Christians into continued silence so a progressive/liberal agenda will come forth. I will not be intimidated or shamed into silence.

 

I am a proud pro-lifer. I believe there is forgiveness and healing for those involved in abortion. I believe we should love those who have gone through that process, but I also believe we should stand for life.

 
I am pro legal immigration but no line jumping for law breakers. I am for traditional marriage and for a private companies right to refuse service on both sides.

 
I am not ashamed of my conservative views and I will not hide them, there is too much at stake to stay silent. This Iran deal is horrendous and dangerous and we cannot afford show votes, it must be stopped.

 
The current administration is propagating racial tension, it has said nothing about the murders of cops continuing in recent weeks. It is up to us to bring racial healing. There is no black church, white church, Hispanic church only The Church of Jesus Christ. When we quit allowing government and media to divide us that’s when things will change.

 

I long for the days of conservative republicans again. Moderate positions don’t help and moderate candidates sure don’t win elections, when will we learn our lesson. When will leadership in both parties quit playing politics and start doing the will of the people again? We elected them, when they don’t do what they’ve been voted in to do we need to start voting them out. Representative government is pretty much dead, look at the Iran deal. It’s time we vote establishment out and we the people back in.

 
When we have leaders who will stand up and even stand against members of their own party we need to stand with them. Chuck Schumer, a democrat is against the Iran deal, I stand with him. senator Ted Cruz has stood on principle and stood up to his own party, I stand with Ted Cruz.

 
Whether you are republican or democrat do your part in your party. Both parties have corrupt individuals in them and it’s up to us, the grass roots to bring about change.

 
Research the candidates, get behind someone who is your values, not in words but action. All of this needs to be done.

 
First and foremost we, the Church do need to truly repent of what we have allowed to take place, after we have done that, it’s time to get involved. God will heal the land through us. The great awakenings of the past came through pastors and Christians not afraid to speak out and not afraid to get involved.

 
It’s past time to get up. We cannot set on the sidelines anymore. We cannot say we’re in the Kingdom so the nation doesn’t matter. When the righteous are in office the people rejoice and when corrupt people rule people mourn.
It’s time to be informed, it’s time to stand up, it’s time to speak out, and it’s time to get involved!

 

 

Ways to get involved:

 

Participate in Silent Sieges at Planned Parenthood Locations

 
Research the candidates and support someone who shares your values and principles

 
Come to DC16 on April 9, 2016 at the Lincoln Memorial and stand for LIFE and Freedom

 
Support your local pregnancy center

 
Use your social media accounts to shed light on issues

 
Join your local political party and bring change in your county, city, and state

 
Pray daily for national, state, and local leaders, including military, police, and fire fighters.

 
Host prayer meetings for an awakening and for Godly leaders to be elected.

 
VOTE in every election!

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Abortion, The Spirit of Molech, & One More Thing

molochBy now most of us have heard and hopefully have taken the time to watch the Planned Parenthood videos. They truly are sick. But this post is not about Planned Parenthood, actually very little of it will have to do with abortion but I’ll start there.

 
Pharaoh ordered all babies two and under to be killed, this was then what modern day abortion is now. King Harod did the same thing. What came out of that attack on a generation? Moses and Jesus. No wonder the enemy murdered so many. That’s what abortion is, the plan of the enemy.

 
Now, there is no condemnation to any woman who has had or any man who has supported abortion, there is forgiveness and healing that can be received through prayer.

 
The issue is not abortion, but what is behind abortion, and that is the spirit of Molech. Molech (Moloch, in the Greek) is a god, and the sacrifice of worship to this God is children. The Israelite’s were forbidden to offer sacrifice to this god in Leviticus eighteen. The purpose of sacrificing children to this false god was to atone for the parents sin. How messed up is this!? You atone for sin by committing another sin, that’s stupid, but that’s the devil.

 
The spirit of Moloch in this age is not just confined to abortion. Many would never support abortion but the spirit of Moloch still operates in the forms of suppressing a child’s dreams, by holding back spiritual development based on natural age.

 
We in the Church may be against abortion, but many have done little to provide an alternative, sure we have clinics, but how well do we support them? It does us no good to scream for life when after birth we don’t assist the mother and child. It does her no good to have the baby to then just be condemned by the Church for being an unwed mother, hello somebody?

 
It does us no good to support life, when a Christian man feels he’s too good to marry a woman with a child, hello somebody? Can we acknowledge our own disgusting self righteousness here?

 
There’s more to the spirit of Moloch than just abortion, there is the oppression trying to hover the child as it grows up, this is where we, the Church, have been snared.

 
It’s time for generations to unite instead of fight. It’s time for us to comfort and connect with individuals instead of condemn.

 
Is abortion wrong? Yes. However, we should not hold past decisions over someone’s head, that’s what the enemy does, we need to come along side them and bring healing. I’m not in a campaign to defund, I’ll leave that up to the politicians. Instead of defunding one organization we should be more focused on funding crisis pregnancy centers. We should be focused on helping the women and men that choose life. We should be focused on helping raise up a young generation in the Word of God.

 
If we are going to defeat the spirit of Moloch it will only happen one way, by partnering with the generation he is trying to take out.

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Can we Trust the NIV?

LIES on NIV

NIV Bad

 

Hey, have you had the crap scared out of you by this post on Facebook?

This coupled with the scary picture of the devil holding the NIV makes you want to throw it out right? If it does hang on just a second and lets really look at this.

 
Before we get into these things I first want to say, “Hi, my name is Casey and I’m a former King James Onlyist. {Hi, Casey (said, in a very creepy voice)}. I was pulled in by things like this and Gail Riplinger’s book and I thought every Bible but the King James was of the devil. When I allowed myself to clearly look at all sides, I found the facts, I found truth.

 
This post is not an attack on the King James, the only reason I’m even defending the NIV is because of how much traction this post on Facebook has gotten. There are those way more qualified than me to address this issue and I’ll link their stuff at the end. I want people to hear from someone who used to believe these claims and find like I did, none of them are based in fact or truth. Full disclosure, I do use the NIV now (I know, scary). In fact, the King James, NIV, Amplified, NKJV, New American Standard, and New Living Translation are all sitting on my desk. (Cue scary dark side music).

 
I do not believe this will do anything for a KJO person, Holy Spirit will have to take the blinders off the eyes. I’m writing this to let people know they can trust the NIV and that they don’t need to be afraid of these fear tactics of KJO’s. Now onto the Facebook post.

 

On the HarperCollins + Zondervan X satanic “bible” = demonic NIV, this is very simple. Many corporations have parent companies, publishers have imprints, smaller companies overseen by bigger ones. Zondervan has its own board and the NIV has a translation committee made up of Christians not unsaved people and lesbians (like some claim).

 
“The NIV has removed 64,575 words” as scary as that sounds something must be pointed out. King James Onlyist set the KJV as the standard, going so far as to dismiss the Hebrew/Greek text it was based from. The Hebrew and Greek must be the standard not the King James.

 

 
Now about those verses,

 
KJV: Matthew 17:21 “Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.”

 

NIV: Matthew 17:21

 

Seems scary. The NIV “removed” this verse, but wait, go down to the bottom of your NIV.

 
“Some manuscripts include here words similar to Mark 9:29”. In reality this has not been “removed” it’s not present in the majority of manuscripts. If that worries you, it shouldn’t you can still see this in Mark’s Gospel.

 
This is something called textual variants. We have to remember that the Bible was transcribed by hand, numerous times. Many times scribes would add marginal notes for clarity. These “missing verses” most times are marginal notes taken back out of the text. Manuscripts have been found in various locations and compared, this is why we have new translations.

 
What we need to note about the Gospels is that they were done by four writers, they are bound to tell the story differently, that doesn’t make anyone wrong, each person remembers different events and things click with people differently. What happened here is simple, to clear up perceived disagreement in the text, scribes took parts of Gospels and inserted them into others to present what they see as uniformity.

 
Back to the verses, Matthew 18:11 that is “missing” is Luke 19:10.
Matthew 23:14 that is “missing” is Luke 20:47.
Mark 7:16 that is “missing” is Mark 4:23. [If anyone has ears let him hear].
Mark 9:44 that is “missing” is verse 48. It’s not missing its four verses later. This same thing is found in Romans chapter eight verse one. The “second half” of the verse is “missing” but its verse four. The truth is there is no condemnation to them that are in Christ. We are convicted not condemned. That’s why the added words have been removed.

 
As you can see King James Onlyist are very dishonest, if you look at the footnotes in your NIV verses are not missing they are simply elsewhere. If the verse are not in the NIV text at all, this is because they are not found in the Hebrew/Greek manuscripts. Even then the footnote says something like is found on Acts 8:37. The verse is not in the NIV but the footnote says, “Some manuscripts include here Philip said, If you believe with all your heart you may. The eunuch answered I believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God”.

 
King James onlyist will try to make us think Jesus’ deity has been removed, salvation and many other doctrines have been removed this is simply untrue.

 
I want to point out something, if you get a copy of the 1611 King James Bible you will see textual marginal notes just like the NIV. The King James translators themselves said they wanted to make a good translation better. That’s what Bible translation is about. It’s been many years since 1611 and many discoveries have been made, surely we should compare manuscript pieces and make the text better.

 
If you want to know more about this issue there are wonderful resources, I simply want people to be able to trust their Bible, be it the KJV, the NIV, NKJV, NLT or NASB.

 
You can trust your NIV, in fact the 2011 edition lines up more with the Hebrew text than the original NIV, imagine that, they improved their own text. One thing I really enjoy is the 2011 edition restores the term Messiah in the Gospels in place of Christ. This is accurate knowing that Jesus came to the Jews not the Greeks. Each time a translation is updated it becomes, or should become better and more accurate. This is not a slam on the KJV but the standard text edition is 1769. Much has been found since then. I reference the KJV often but if we are honest, even if someone wants to use the KJV they have to admit that it is beneficial to look at versions that continually keep up with textual discoveries.

 
I hope this has helped put your mind at ease concerning your NIV and maybe even other versions you may like. Be sure that regardless of the version you read that Holy Spirit can teach you through it.

 
For the love of God’s word,
Casey

 

Resources to help us understand why we can trust the NIV:

The King James Only Controversy: Can you Trust Modern Translations by Dr. James White

Discussion between Onlyist and NASB, NIV, NKJV Committee Members. (Youtube Videos).

The NIV: The Making of a Contemporary Translation by Kenneth Barker

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Thoughts on SCOTUS Ruling

americanchurchWhat can I say that hasn’t already been said by leaders in the Church?
Last week was a sad week. Politically, states lost a little more of their rights, morally and culturally a long standing definition was changed, and biblically, judges that legislated from the bench violated God’s law.
My post is actually not about any of that though, it’s about what we do now and where we go from here.

What do we do? We preach the gospel and love people.
Where do we go? To the hurting.

I do not agree with the SCOTUS decision, constitutionally, I believe, it should have been left up to the states.
Now, it’s time for us to show the love of Jesus and clearly present the message of the gospel.
have I had all the doom and gloom thoughts? Yes.
Do I think we need a religious protection amendment added to the constitution? Yes.
I didn’t write last week because I didn’t want to write out of emotionalism.
Really the only thing that can be said now is don’t back off the truth and keep presenting the love of God through the gospel.

This really is the bottom line, let’s not get distracted.

 

Various responses to the decision:

Dutch Sheets Statement

Video from Pastor John Kilpatrick

Dallas Theological Seminary Statement

 

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The Key to Revival’s Door

door keyThis Father’s Day will be the 20th anniversary of the Brownsville revival.

 

Myself and maybe more importantly, well known leaders in the Church have been talking about the need for another great move of God, a third great awakening, a revival.

 
As much as I believe we need a revival, I think we need God more. Let me explain, revival can be trumped up through happy music, shouting, screaming preachers, and let’s be honest, spiritual excess. All this can and many times is called revival, when in reality it’s not.

 
If we truly want to see a revival we must first look to God and obey His word.

 
We are all familiar with 2 Chronicles 7:14, but the reasons that verse has not worked for us is two-fold. One, we’ve never truly repented, and two, we’ve never taken it in context.

 
2 Chronicles 7:12-22 NKJV ” 12 Then the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice. 13 When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people, 14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 15 Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place. 16 For now I have chosen and sanctified this house, that My name may be there forever; and My eyes and My heart will be there perpetually. 17 As for you, if you walk before Me as your father David walked, and do according to all that I have commanded you, and if you keep My statutes and My judgments, 18 then I will establish the throne of your kingdom, as I covenanted with David your father, saying, ‘You shall not fail to have a man as ruler in Israel.’19 “But if you turn away and forsake My statutes and My commandments which I have set before you, and go and serve other gods, and worship them, 20 then I will uproot them from My land which I have given them; and this house which I have sanctified for My name I will cast out of My sight, and will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples.21 “And as for this house, which is exalted, everyone who passes by it will be astonished and say, ‘Why has the LORD done thus to this land and this house?’ 22 Then they will answer, ‘Because they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, who brought them out of the land of Egypt, and embraced other gods, and worshiped them and served them; therefore He has brought all this calamity on them.’”

 
When we read this portion of Scripture with context it has somewhat of a different feel to it.

 
The place was sanctified and there was sacrifice. We need to be sanctified and we need to be the sacrifice.

 
To be sanctified means to be set apart. We are sanctified when Jesus is made LORD of our life. At salvation He is savior but at sanctification He is made LORD.

 
Psalm 51:7-10 NKJV ” 7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.8 Make me hear joy and gladness, That the bones You have broken may rejoice.9 Hide Your face from my sins, And blot out all my iniquities.10 Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.”

 
1 Thessalonians 4:3-7; 5:23 NKJV “3 For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality; 4 that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, 5 not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God; 6 that no one should take advantage of and defraud his brother in this matter, because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also forewarned you and testified. 7 For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness. 5:23 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

 
Many Christians have made Jesus savior, but not all have made Him LORD. Salvation and sanctification are clearly two different and separate works of Holy Spirit and until we are sanctified, until our temples are sanctified, until our churches are sanctified we will not see God, nor a move of God.

 
Hebrews 12:14 says without holiness no man shall see God. It is not enough to be saved. Matthew three says we must produce fruit in keeping with repentance. We must be sanctified.
In our sanctification we must present ourselves holy and acceptable which is our reasonable worshipful service.

 
In revival we want the glory of God to come down. The glory of God is the holiness of God. Exodus 15:11 NIV “majestic in holiness, awesome in glory”.

 
There are two Hebrew words here, Kabod: holiness as brilliance, and Kodesh: holiness as glory.

 
The eleventh verse ends, working wonders.

 
Before we ever see supernatural manifestations of glory, we must see and be a part of the holiness of the glory of God.

 
We must walk according to the Word of God, 2 Chronicles 7:17. If we do not take the holiness of God seriously and the command of all of Scripture to live and walk holy, we will never see the glory, we won’t see revival.

 
Second Chronicles seven was written to the Church, not the world. This is for us. The call to repentance is for us, the call to sanctification and sacrifice is to us. The call to walk according to the Word is for us.

 
I am thrilled to acknowledge and celebrate a revival anniversary, but this needs to serve as a wake-up call. Steve Hill preached repentance and holiness, the healings and other things happened because of the repentance and holiness lifestyle.

 
If we truly want to see a move of God we must do the following:

 

Repent of our wicked ways.

 
Invite Holy Spirit to sanctify us and we continually sanctify ourselves through the Word.

 
We must put ourselves on the altar of sacrifice.

 
All this must be done individually before we can ever do it corporately.

 
Holiness is a positive message, it is a victory message. If we want to see the promises of God fulfilled, and I know each one of us does, we must hold up our end, which is to walk on the highway of holiness (Isaiah 35:8).

 
Take some time and ask Holy Spirit to speak to your heart, ask to be sanctified, pray the prayer of Psalm 51. Begin walking in victory today, walk in purity and demonstrate power.

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Walking in the New Creation

imageWe have all probably heard the words of 2 Corinthians 5:17 many times. “Therefore, if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature, old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new”.

 
We know that verse, but many struggle to live in the reality of the new creation. The reason for this is very simple, Paul explains this in Romans; the nature of the flesh is always battling against our spirit, this is why Paul said, I die daily.

 
In Romans six Paul talks about how our old nature has been crucified and that we who are dead to sin should not continue to live in sin. Chapter six, however, is not what we will be looking at today. We will be looking at the eighth chapter. I would ask though, before you continue reading that you would get your Bible and read the sixth and seventh chapter to understand where Paul is coming from in chapter eight.

 
In chapter eight Paul differentiates between the carnal Christian and the spiritual Christian and in this post we will be looking at the differences between the two.

 
We won’t be looking at every verse in the chapter, just those that highlight the differences between the two ways of living.

 
Romans 8:5-7 KJV “For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. (6) For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. (7) because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.”

 
This is precisely why we must be renewed in the spirit of our mind. If we live our lives focused on the things of this world we will not be spiritually minded, but carnally minded.

 
Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing comes by the Word of God. Conversely; fear cometh by hearing, and hearing comes by the words of doubt and unbelief. Now that last one is not a Bible verse but the principle is true.

 
Twelve spies were sent to Canaan, two had a faith report and ten had a fear report. They went with what they heard the most of, what we hear we believe.

 
The great Old Testament chapter of what Christ will accomplish on the cross begins with these words, “Who hath believed our report, and to whom hath the arm of the LORD been revealed.” Believing requires hearing.

 
In order to be a spiritual Christian instead of a carnal Christian we must first look at what we are hearing. Take some time and take inventory of your life, what are you being filled with?

 
This ultimately leads us to the second area, the words we speak. Mark 11:23 says, we can have what we say, instead, many of us say what we have.

 
We must renew our minds and change the words of our mouths.

 
I know this sound over simplistic but this is how we walk in the new creation, we renew our minds and our mouths to the Word of God.

 
“As a man thinketh in his heart so is he.”

 
“Life and death are in the power of the tongue, and they that love to talk will eat its fruit”.

 
Abraham’s faith was confirmed by the words he spoke and without faith it is impossible to please God.

 
Each of us need to take our lives moment by moment and day by day and choose to change our thinking and our mouths.

 
We start by praying and asking for the help of Holy Spirit, then we take the next step and get in the Word and renew our minds with it. It’s not enough just to go to Church, we must be in the Word daily for ourselves.

 

 

None of us will be able to see the Word work on our behalf if we aren’t in it and applying it.

 

Being in the Word changes our thinking and applying it changes our speaking.

 
That’s it, that’s how we walk in the new creation, we renew our minds and change our mouths.

 

 

Resources for renewing your mind and changing your mouth:
New Creation Realities: E.W. Kenyon

 
ReThink Your Life: Stan Toler

 
The Power of Your Words: Don Gossett & E. W. Kenyon

 

 

Easy steps to help start the process:

 
1. Cut out one thirty minute TV show and spend that time in prayer and Bible study.

 
2. Listen to a Bible teacher on your way to work (invest in CD’s, the radio is not the place to start).

 
3. Find a friend to help you keep your words lined up with The Word.

 
The truth is many of our minds and mouths don’t line up with the Word because we knowingly fill them with negative thoughts and talk. ReThink Your Life is an excellent resource that is broken into weekly segments to help you change the way you think. If you will give yourself thirty days, you will be a different person.

 
If you choose to get the book and do the four week plan, I recommend reading The Power of Your Words after you finish reading week two. That way you can incorporate your new way of speaking with your new way of thinking.

 
Also if you do the plan, let me know so I can be praying with you. keep me up to date with how you’re doing and let me hear your story at the end.

 
May the Lord richly bless the start of your life change and encourage and empower you to walk in victory.

 

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A Message for Today From the Bygone Era

americanchurchMatthew 4:17 KJV “From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand”.

 
The word repent means to think differently. This is why 2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV says, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new”.

 
With all that’s going on in our world today, with a Supreme Court ruling on marriage being expected next month, with Christians being beheaded all around the world, with Christian businesses already being fined in the U.S. it’s time for Second Chronicles 7:14 to quit being the cute verse on the national day of prayer it must become our verse in action.

 
2 Chronicles 7:14 KJV “IF my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; THEN will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and heal their land”.

 
This is a IF – THEN verse, not a guaranteed verse.

 
Humble themselves: The word humble only has this meaning twice in Scripture; here and chapter thirty-four. To humble ourselves means to bend the knee, to humiliate, to bring down (low) into subjection, to be under, to humble [your] (self).

 
Notice that God is not humbling us, but we are humbling ourselves. In other words we are fully submitting ourselves to God. This is the first step to change in our nation. This is even the first step to a move of God within the Church.

 
After we have fully submitted to God we can then pray and seek Him and turn from our wicked ways.

 
This is another key for the Church, turning from our wicked ways. This whole verse is about Gods people changing. We must get rid of our wicked ways.

 
It’s time for the “old” message of repentance and holiness to once again be proclaimed in the churches.

 
The words of Zechariah 14:20-21 KJV are a call for the Church today. “In that day shall there be upon the bells of the horses, HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD; and the pots in the LORD’S house shall be like the bowls before the altar. (21) Yea, every pot in Jerusalem and Judah shall be holiness unto the LORD of hosts: and all they that sacrifice shall come in and take of them, and seethe theirin: and in that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the LORD of hosts”.

 
We are in an hour where holiness must be restored to the Church. We can no longer tolerate a preaching of grace that allows for loose living and sinful living. It’s time to restore standards once again.

 
It’s time we quit laughing at the past saying they didn’t drink and wear jewelry. Because they didn’t drink they never had to keep watch on themselves as not to have too many.

 

Ladies making fun of women for not piercing their ears and always wearing long skirts. It could be that you are getting attention you don’t want because of what else you have pierced and how tight your clothes are.

 
And don’t make the mistake of thinking I’m being “religious” or “legalistic”. The Word of God still has standards, the text does say let not your adornment be outward but inward. If your clothes or jewelry is causing men to say and be a way you don’t like rethink how you look. And guys take a look at Job 31:1 and get your eyes in the right place.

 
Well, now, Casey, that verse is Old Testament and were under grace not law. Well, Romans six says, shall we sin that grace may abound? No. Some of the modern grace message has gotten too permissive in behavior.

 
And lest we mistake holiness as Old Testament or legalism:

 
1 peter 1:15-16 KJV “But as he which hath called you is holy, so ye be holy in all manner of conversation; (16) because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy”.

 
Hebrews 12:14 KJV “Follow peace with all, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:”

 
Holiness is commanded and holiness is possible. The only sermon Jesus ever gave reiterated the Ten Commandments and was a sermon on holiness (Matthew five through seven).

 
It may seem “old fashioned” to many but the Church today must return to the message of Jesus, a Kingdom message, repentance and holiness.

 
The only way we will see the supernatural is to preach the same message and live the same way Jesus did.

 
Instead of making fun of our forefathers, instead of replacing their books and messages with all new books with modern antidotes and motivational messages, let us preach the same word, the Gospel, the message of Jesus.

 
If we do these things and are not afraid to address what is Going on in our world we will see a third great awakening.

 
But we must be willing to preach repentance and holiness and we must not cower in fear and shy away from the issues of the day. King didn’t, Bonheoffer didn’t and we can’t afford to ignore the issues of our day, if we do, we can say goodbye to the America we once knew.

 

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Two Hindrances to Revival

revivalI believe there are two major hindrances to any move of God, legalism and lawlessness. These two are opposite of each other but they have the same affect, effect, and infect; they stop the move of God.

Legalism can take on two forms. One it can take the Word and twist it and two it can past moves and make the new move try to fit.

The Pharisees took the law and twisted it, but we must understand, the law is not bad, the perversion of the law is bad. Jesus taught the law in His “Sermon on the Mount”. The difference between Jesus’ teaching and the Pharisees teaching? Jesus liberated and the Pharisees locked up.
We see Jesus healing on the Sabbath (liberating) and we see the Pharisees condemning Him for it (locking up).

Jesus said this, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the Scribes and Pharisees you will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Paul called himself a “Pharisee of Pharisees”. The law is not bad, without the law you have lawlessness which is condemned in Scripture.

Pharisees tried to hinder Jesus, that same spirit tries to hinder moves of God today.

A second manifestation of this spirit is to make a new move fit an old mold. Remember, you can’t put new wine into an old skin. Isaiah 42;9 declares, “behold I do a new thing before it springs forth, I will tell you of it.”

The move of God in 2015 will not look like the move of God in 1950. It will be the same Spirit with new manifestations.

I believe the main reasons why denominations can start off so on fire and thirty years down the road be dead, dry and predictable is because they try to fit everything into the mold of the beginning.

We must allow God to speak and move in new ways. I’m not talking about revelation outside the Word, I’m talking a fresh touch and move of the Holy Spirit.

We must be willing to move in new directions to experience this next move of God.

The Second hindrance to revival is lawlessness. Simply put lawlessness says we are under grace there are no commands. This is simply not true.

Jesus said if you love me you will obey me. Jesus is the Word made flesh, that’s Old Testament Word and New Testament Word.

The only thing in the Old Testament we are not bound to is sacrificial law because Jesus is our sacrifice, but Jesus did not do away with the moral teaching of the Torah.

There is more I can say on this subject but I would simply be repeating things I have said in my last few posts.

The bottom line is this as we press forward into the supernatural, let’s not put God in a box from fifty years ago and let’s not dismiss His call to holiness. Without holiness, Hebrews says, no man will see the Lord.

Let us open up our hearts and submit ourselves to God in worship so that we can catch the wave of this move of God.

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A Message for Young Women (and it’s not what you think)

fatcuttingYes, I’m a guy writing a message to women and no, it’s not about modesty. Yes, I believe modesty is important but I want to encourage in another way.

It’s ok not to be light pole thin. That’s my message. In a culture where most young women feel pressured by fad diets and edited pictures on magazines it’s time a guy comes out and says not everyone has to be skinny. (I’m sure other guys have written this but this has been on my mind lately).

A few weeks ago Kim Kardashian tried to “break the internet” with her fake self. My heart breaks for her, she has been so consumed by a celebrity culture that she feels she has to do something like that.

All I want to say is this, you can be healthy and attractive without having to be pencil thin, with raised cheeks or anything else. If I can say anything to you that you will receive, I want you to receive this, You are BLESSED and you are released to be who you are created to be. I break the bondage of false imaging over you right now in the name of Jesus!

Every young woman deserves to know they are created in God’s image and that image is not every girl being skinny with blonde hair and blue eyes.

If you want to lose weight that’s great but don’t allow bondage to be put on you and don’t allow the enemy to put a false image of what’s pretty in front of you via a magazine cover.

I know this isn’t deep, I’m not trying to be deep, I simply want to say it’s ok to be yourself, it’s ok not to be like the magazine cover or the TV commercial. Be yourself, that’s who God, your Father created you to be.

Be you inside and out!

If you have a hard time being you. If you constantly feel the need to lose weight (even when your thin), if you constantly feel insecure about what you look like physically ask to see yourself through the Father’s eyes.

My prayer is that today you receive freedom from the bondage of false imaging and anything else you struggle with.

The Word of God says you were made in His image and His image is not a magazine cover, be free to be yourself!

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Like I said this wasn’t deep just what was on my heart. If you are a young woman reading this I want to say God has made everyone different, don’t rob the world of yourself trying to be someone else. You were created to BLESS and you can’t do that trying to be someone else. God loves you and He wants you to love and accept yourself. When you do that others will see you the way you see yourself. I hope I have encouraged you and in some small way you have sensed the love and acceptance of your Heavenly Father.

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