Is listening so hard?

Sometimes it seems that we just can’t listen to each other’s problems or to our preacher’s sermons. Listening to each other is the best way to get along with each other, yet there are so many problems between couples and countries all over the world. Most of those problems could be solved if we could put our pride and our attitudes on a shelf and sit down like adults and talk and listen to each other!

This would solve many if not most of the world’s problems, but it seems that when pride gets in the way and our attitudes become broiled in the juices of envy and hatred, then our ears and the ability to listen to each other becomes cut off or stopped up. Believe me, Satan has his hand and his followers all in the middle of these conflicts, whether it is between a man and woman trying to make their marriage work or between political parties in a country!

Our ears, spiritually and physically, become muddled to the point that we don’t hear what we should and we hear only part of what we shouldn’t. Which causes more misunderstandings and problems and it just gets worse from there, like a wet snowball rolling downhill. Pretty soon the problem or the snowball is so big that it can’t be fixed or stopped by just one person!

Jesus listened with His ears and with His heart and that is something which the church in general seems to have lost the ability to do, especially in the times that we live in today! The problem that we have is that we can’t understand the problem today because we aren’t really listening with our spiritual ears, our heart. We listen with our ears but we try to use psychobabble to “take care of the problem”, or make people feel good about themselves, or try to work around the issue.

In truth…all we are doing is putting a band-aid over a large cut or rather we are bandaging it but we aren’t helping in the healing of it. This kind of “help” is not helping at all, it only makes the problems worse! Like putting used tires on a car every six months, they wear out sooner and will still go flat easier than new ones, even if they are cheaper it is not helping.

Making people feel better about themselves is good, but spiritually it is suicide and murder. If you smooth over people’s sins and make them feel okay about them without telling them about salvation through Jesus, you are not a preacher…you are acting as a psychiatrist and that won’t do anyone good for eternity! PREACH FROM THE BIBLE! Tell the salvation and healing story of Jesus and His atonement for all of us from the gospels!

People need that today more than they know! John 3:16 is so powerful that it is a sermon in itself! Please, the Church needs to wake up and be the Body of Christ that this world needs NOW! This world will soon be in more of a situation than anyone alive has ever seen or experienced and the only rescue is through Jesus!

False teachers

Jesus said that there would be false teachers that would come claiming to be Him, especially during this time that we live in. It is happening now. They aren’t getting much coverage yet, but they will. I caution you, beware of people, teachers who claim to be the incarnation of Christ or the “new” Christ. If you hear this from someone, especially someone who is acting as a teacher or preacher, RUN!

The angels told Jesus’ disciples that He will come back in the manner in which you have seen Him go. Jesus said that He would come back one day to set up His Kingdom on this Earth, and all will see Him and know that it is Him when it happens. There won’t be a question about it. Read God’s Word and learn from Him, not some person who wants to take your money and live like a “god” because you think that what he says is true.

False teachers are all over the world, not just in America, but it seems that more of them are coming out of the closet to be seen in the news and by people these days. The thing is, it is only going to get worse as the time draws nearer to the time of Tribulation spoken of in Revelation. More and more will show up, claiming all kinds of miracles and some may even perform some which will deceive many people! These are not the Christ, our Messiah, Jesus the Son of God!

His appearance will be seen by everyone without the aid of television or the Internet and it will be evident to all when He comes. Games and virtual reality will not show Him, but everyone will know that He has come! Some will cry because they weren’t ready for His return and some will be angry because of His return. Life will change everywhere in a moment, in the “twinkling of an eye” those who belong to Him will be taken up to be with Him, and those who have already died will be given their bodies as they are raised immortal!

This is not some fantasy, it is predicted by the Son of God and it will come to pass. If you don’t know Him, I suggest that you seek Him out and find out about Him and what it means to be a believer! When the Tribulation begins, it will be harder to become a Christian because of the persecution and because of the hatred toward Christians. Many planes and cars will crash on that day, so there will be many deaths on that day that are blamed on Christians and their God!

Don’t fall into that trap! Seek Him out while He can be found, today!

Racism and hate

Can we overcome these two demons? It is possible, but not under our own power and motivation. Unfortunately our independence and our ability to choose what we believe or not, on an individual basis, is what grew these two into mankind’s conscience. We are not born this way, but over time and exposure to other ideas and teachings at home or school, we do develop our own version, our own opinions toward others. That is where these destructive attitudes or emotions grow from.

Sometimes, they aren’t very potent in certain individuals but with a bit of prodding from someone who can stoke them and get your emotions involved in the matter then, like a small fire with alcohol or gas poured on it, they will explode. We see this everyday and hear about it on the news, if you can stand to watch it. Pride, arrogance, and greed follow along with these two and all of them together can cripple a country.

Why is it so hard for humanity to get past these kinds of problems? INDIVIDUALITY. We seem to be resistant to being in any kind of real, true relationship with each other. Oh, we may do so with our family, maybe our close friends, but anyone outside of that circle is out of luck. Even…God.

Oh, we may say that we “believe” in Him, but we mostly believe in our idea of God. Why is this? It is also because of our freedom which God allows us to have, because love cannot flourish without the freedom to choose. Many times we look at God’s Word during church and see that God allowed His people to choose many times in the Bible. He didn’t stop them from walking away from Him or worshiping Him, because He loves us.

Love is above hate and bitterness and racism and true love does not allow these emotions to flourish at all. It is mankind’s evil and hatred for other opinions which causes so much strife and trouble in our world today. God didn’t create evil, though He allows it to be. We should seek Him, the God of the Bible and there is no other. His Word is Truth and salvation offered to all who will believe in Him and in His atonement which is offered through Jesus the Christ.

Wisdom, where does it come from?

Some people say that wisdom comes with age, but I have seen some older people do some strange things that don’t seem to bear this out. I am not giving any examples here, but I think you know who you are. Some novels contain some interesting wisdom or at least some sayings which people like to quote or post on Facebook.

But…the greatest wisdom that I have ever read is contained in the Bible. Yep…that’s what I said, the Bible! In many ways most of our “wisdom” has come from God’s Word at some point, whether we heard it from our grandparents or parents. Sometimes, they don’t ever realize that much of their sayings are actually re-worded quotes from the Bible.

Why do I say that wisdom comes from God? Because He is our Creator, so don’t you think He is wise beyond our measure? He lives outside of time and space and He can see all parts of your life and mine from beginning to end.

We can’t understand Him, except by reading and studying His Word and even then we won’t understand Him even as much as we can each other. God is far above us in all ways, yet He loves us so dearly that He sent His Son to pay the penalty for our sins. Why would God do this? Because of His love for us that is why. Trying to reason out God’s ways with the wisdom of man doesn’t work.

His wisdom is only gained by reading His Word and by faith in Him. To the world and to those who have not accepted Him as Savior, God’s wisdom and His Word is just foolishness and can’t be understood. Without faith and belief in Him, it can’t be but God only asks that we believe in Jesus as our Savior and the faith which brings us to that point will allow us to see the wisdom in His Word. In this life, we won’t understand it, but we can at least live our lives as His servants and help the rest of the world to know Him.

Make a difference…

I watiamnotashamedched the movie “I am not ashamed” yesterday and it made me think of our impact on the world and the people around us. Rachel Joy Scott struggled with her new faith in Jesus in high school before the shooting that took her life. Most of us can relate, if we were a Christian in school, which I wasn’t. I knew about Jesus and the Bible because I had been on the drug plan for learning it. I was drug to church every time my Mom went, so I had heard all of the preaching and stuff. But, hearing and knowing about Jesus is not the same as having faith in Him, real honest faith.

I provided the link above just in case anyone wanted to know about the movie, I get nothing from your following or purchasing it. The point of this post is this: will you make a difference?

Her story and the fact that she didn’t back down in the face of losing her life, as many Christians over the centuries have done, has made a real impact on many people. At the end of the movie there was some statistics which said that her life had impacted over 20 million people since April 20, 1999. One life, just one-act of selfless faith and forgiveness can make a difference. It doesn’t take a Master’s degree or a PhD to tell people about Him and to show your faith by your life and your deeds to those around you.

God loves us even when we aren’t sure how we feel about Him. He loved each of us whether we even knew Him and before we were all born and He did so in a way that we can’t understand or comprehend! God is and should be your strength and your source of living water which never dries up and never gives up on you and your purpose in Him!

During high school, I was a very angry boy. I kept it bottled up most of the time, but I allowed it to hurt me by smoking and drinking to the point of being so drunk I barely remember the drive home, if I made it at all. At least one time, I had a wreck on the way home, although the only one that really sticks in my memory is the one where I totaled my mother’s car. I was angry at God and at my parents for getting divorced and I really didn’t care much about what happened to me. I could identify with Rachel in being a child of a broken home.

My point, as I said earlier, is that we can all make a difference in the world. Even if it is only in our immediate area. Heaven rejoices when one sinner comes to Jesus and if you or I have any part to play in that, then be grateful and willing to be useful in His Kingdom for that one person. Make sure that your life means something because we are not guaranteed tomorrow, so make today a day that God uses in your life and your witness  for His Glory!

Life and death…choose Life!

In so many ways, our world looks like this. Possibly not such a stark contrast in much of the world as this, but in other ways it is exactly like this. Many places in the world are or have been in a drought for a long, long time. In some areas, the drought is caused by man’s own mean-lifeordeathspirited streak in not tolerating others particularly in the area of religion.


Is it so hard to get along with others who don’t believe exactly the same as you do? For some, it seems to be exactly that point! Hindu’s can’t get along with Christians, Muslim’s can’t get along with Christians, Socialist and Communist countries have problems with Christians. Do you see a pattern here?

It isn’t hard to see, but it is hard to understand the reason behind it. It is true that in the distant past, Christian countries and those who followed the leader of the Church at the time, well-meaning soldiers who were charged by the Church to bring civilization and “right beliefs” to the heathen. This was not the way to bring Christ to other people, but it was done, so lets move on!

Our past, regardless of the country that you live in or the beliefs that you hold, is something that we should study, make note of so that we won’t repeat those mistakes, and then move toward a more Christ-like living arrangement. Jesus did not tell us to go and beat belief into the masses because that doesn’t work! It turns most, if not all, away from that belief in Him.

Jesus said for us to go and tell them the good news of His teachings and that He came to bring salvation to all of mankind. Jesus paid the price so that all could benefit from it, but it is your choice whether you accept it and respond when God calls you.

Matthew 28:16-20 King James Version

16 Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. 17 And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.

18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.


Real Christianity

realsalvationThe only way to tell if someone is a Christian, is a real change in their life. One which lasts and is evident in their lives from day-to-day. Life has a way of making this hard to see sometimes because of our work or our everyday life, but its the little things which people notice. Such as, giving thanks for your meal at a fast food restaurant and bowing your head at the table to do so. Having an attitude of peace even during times where others would be under stress and this attitude comes from the Holy Spirit which gives you comfort even in times of trouble.

So, what should you do with this religion? If you haven’t embraced and accepted Jesus as your Savior, what are you waiting for? I realize that there are many who are against Christianity that this is totally out of the question. But…allow me to ask one question of you: If you don’t believe in Jesus or the Bible, then what do you believe in? One other question comes to mind as well: What if you are wrong?

If Heaven and Hell exist, which they both do exist by the way, then do you think there is a reason for belief in Jesus and the Bible? How will you feel after death when you find that life doesn’t end entirely but continues on into eternity and there are consequences for your beliefs, in particular if you have rejected salvation through Jesus.

Please, consider the possibility of the facts contained in the Bible being true. Why am I saying this? Because, I am a pastor and I have to! It is my job requirement, just as it was the apostle Paul who began as Saul. He was a persecutor of Christians, he stood by while Stephen was stoned to death yet God saw that he could be used for spreading the gospel of salvation in Jesus! I will be praying that many of you will give it a serious read in the book of Romans at least.


I hear this a lot! If I had said that to my father, I would’ve paid for it and I doubt I would’ve said it again!

It seems that in today’s world, many people are saying the same thing in reference to God and His Word and the so-called “rules” that are preached in the pulpit of many churches today. Why do I say many and not all? Because there are many preachers who are not preaching from His Word like they are supposed to.

There are no “rules” in Christianity to keep, other than the Commandments of our Lord. We are not required to study His Word a certain number of hours a day, we aren’t required to wear certain clothes, we aren’t required to do anything. But, consider this: God sent His only begotten Son to give His life as a sinless offering for all of our sins. Then, He was raised from the grave on the third day and appeared to many people until just before the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came to His disciples.

God didn’t have to do this, but it was His plan from the beginning where He mentioned this:  “I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, And you shall bruise him on the heel” (Genesis 3:15).

That “seed of the woman” was Jesus Christ!

rules-for-christian-living-1024x613The reason that I said that there are no “rules” in Christianity is because once you accept Jesus as your Savior, you have the Holy Spirit living inside your heart. When that happens, you begin being changed from the inside and you want to do those things which so many people call restrictions or rules. You are changed from the person that you were into a new creation in Christ!

Before I truly accepted Jesus as my Savior, I still liked to smoke a cigarette once in a while, now I don’t have the craving to do so. A long time ago, I drank whiskey almost every weekend along with smoking illegal drugs like marijuana. That was more than 37 years ago, I don’t want to do those things anymore. I still have cravings sometimes for a smoke or a beer but God says that He won’t allow you to be tempted beyond that which you are able to bear, and He is true to His Word!

Why do some preachers preach messages which don’t go by God’s Word today? Oh, they use some passages from it, but the message doesn’t necessarily follow the meaning of those passages sometimes. Understand now, I am not picking on preachers in general, there are just a few who have done this. Some of them you have heard of in the news, some are local to me in the area that I live. My point is that if you are truly called to be a preacher for God’s Kingdom, you need to preach from His Word.

I know that some of what I write I don’t include a scripture every time, it is just the “wisdom” that I have learned from reading the Bible for the past ten or fifteen years from Genesis to Revelation. Each time that I read through it, I find something new that I didn’t understand before or maybe the Holy Spirit reveals to me something that He didn’t the last time.

That is the kind of study that God wants from His adopted children. There isn’t a rule that you have to do it, but how else are you going to get to know God if you don’t learn His voice which is revealed in Scripture? Does that make me a “super Christian”? No, just a forgiven and redeemed one! God loves the whole world, which is why He sent His Son into it so that He could live a sinless life and be the blameless, spotless, Lamb of God which would take away the sins of the world!

The offer of redemption is available to each of us, regardless of race, color, or nationality. It doesn’t depend upon your religion or your willingness to be a missionary and there are no requirements of denying yourself of food or water or anything that is available to you. The only part of you that God wants is your heart and your obedience to Him. When He calls you, answer Him. If He leads you to go somewhere to be a missionary, go without question.

This is the God that led Moses through the wilderness and helped him to defeat Pharaoh and release Israel from bondage. God also went with them through the wilderness and fed them manna and gave them and their animals water from the Rock (a type of Jesus). All of this is there to be learned. Sixty six books in the Bible tell the story of God’s love for mankind and show you the Savior Who was to come and Who did come to die for your sins. He will come again, only this time He will be King of Kings and Judge the whole world, those who haven’t accepted Him as their Lord.

What? Is an expression of surprise and sometimes frustration, but it is also used disrespectfully as well. What should you do? If you have felt His call, a small voice or a touch in your heart telling you that you need Him, don’t push Him away. Don’t run like Jonah did, because God is everywhere and He can find you. If He has something for you to do, it means that nobody else can do it….just you! Think about it while you can.

When things go wrong…

I don’t have to ask about this one, because we all have had days or weeks where things have gone wrong in some way or another. The reason that I am writing this is to encourage those who have been impacted by the hurricane on the East coast. I can hear many people saying “They don’t need encouragement, they need money and help getting their lives back together”.
While that is true, they do need to look toward God Who is the Creator and the Provider of all that they need. Some may be asking where was God when the storm hit? The answer is, if you are a Christian, He was there with you all through the storm.

Some people may ask why didn’t God push the storm out to sea instead of causing so much damage? Because we need to grow and become strong, just like trees do. If the wind doesn’t blow while a tree is growing, the roots will not become strong enough to hold it upright and it will fall. Everything that we go through in life either makes us weak, reveals our weakness or makes us stronger. Disease can make us weak, the Holy Spirit reveals to us where our weakness really is and when we realize this and pray for God to give us the strength to get through it…He will.

Many times I have gotten to a point in my life where I felt that nothing that I did or said was making a difference in my life or anyone else’s life. It is at this point that Satan will target your faith, especially if your faith has cracks in it and is not complete and whole in Jesus. He will knock a piece of it loose and start chipping away at your faith, your foundation. This is when you begin to doubt your self and God too. I have even asked God to just take my life and end my existence here because I am no good to His Kingdom, BUT God knows better!!

God can see beyond your weakness and beyond your pity party and He knows what you can do and what you will do, that is why He has never answered my prayer for Him to take my life. Your life and mine are part of His design and we all have a purpose in His Kingdom. What we do with that purpose and with our life is dependent upon our faith and our willingness to obey Him and His calling.

Do you know what He is calling you to do or what He has called you to do? Have you answered that call or are you ignoring it, hoping that He will call you for something that you like better? Our calling is our life in Him regardless of the size of the calling or the ministry that we are being called into. Have you accepted your call from God and determined to follow the path laid before you for His glory?

I urge you to do so, because the church, the body of Christ, needs all of its members to work and to do His work until He comes. Regardless of the doctrine you follow or the denomination that you worship in, whether it is Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, or Catholic, if your heart belongs to Jesus then you are part of His body, the church.

Love, where did it come from?

I know, there are going to be people wondering about my sanity now. Trust me, I know where I am going with this.

The honest answer to that question is very simple: It came from God! He wouldn’t have made our world the way that He did if He didn’t love us, all of us! God made the universe itself so that we could look out and see what an awesome God we serve! Why am I putting so many exclamation marks in these sentences? Because the point that I am making needs to be emphasized so people will notice it.

God put all of the planets together in our solar system in the order that they are because of His love for us. How or rather why do I say this? Because Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune and Uranus are all out past the asteroid belt and they scoop up or influence any comet or other body so our planet doesn’t get slammed like the moon or Mercury.

I know that our planet has been hit in the past by meteors which have done some serious damage, but not to the extent of wiping humanity off the face of the Earth. Love came to us through the acts and the intent of God because He loved us before He created Earth. In His Word there are many references to His love for us and we should be able to see it in everything around us every day! If you can’t then there is something wrong.

Why do I say this? It is because of the questions and the angry outbursts which will come after this hurricane. So many people killed and put out of their homes by a storm which moved so slow, couldn’t God stop it? Yes, He could have, but what will come out of this storm? People helping people who have been made homeless, people helping those who are injured by the debris or by walls falling, food and shelter will be given and provided by people who didn’t have to do anything but they were moved with compassion to do something.

What is it that makes us be compassionate in times like this? It is because we are made in the image of God, all of us can see the needs of those who need help and if we can help, we should. Satan has a temporary claim on the rulership of this world, but his time is growing shorter by the day. He knows this and he is trying to cause as much pain and suffering in this world as he can. Not so much to punish us, but to make people question whether God cares for us or not!

God loves us, all of us. It is because of His love that many of us are still here, and those who have been killed by these storms or earthquakes or wars are casualties of Satan’s hatred for humanity! Give your life to Jesus and follow Him because when you look at the signs all around us and the prophecies in God’s Word, you can see that there isn’t much time left for this world before He comes! Amen.