Our crazy, mixed up world


It seems that we live in a world which is totally out of touch, not only with religion and the Scriptures, but with reality itself! Even everyday news has become more entertainment than actual news! Yes, there are shootings and stabbings and people die every day, some of them too young to believe that they were even in danger. So, what is happening to our culture and the people in it?

Not only in America but all over the world it seems that more emphasis is placed on what you are tweeting on social media sites than what is being done to help the homeless or to straighten out the enormous debt that, not only America has but also exists in other countries! It seems very strange that everyone, people on the street and in the media, seems to be exaggerating even the smallest bit of drivel which is sent out on social media such as Twitter or Facebook!

The strangest part of all of this is that it was foretold in God’s Word nearly two thousand years ago. In the book of 1 John, the apostle John wrote that:

1 John 2:15-17
Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

It is true that the words “social media” or any reference to such is not in the Bible, but it is said that “knowledge would increase in the last days“; and with the Internet available to at least one-third of the world’s population, access to knowledge certainly has increased. All sorts of knowledge, good and bad, is available to all people in free countries at all times of the day.

So, just how crazy is our world? Look around on the ‘Net and see or any social media site, even on the news you can see all sorts of behavior that is or would be in that category. Why is all of this happening now? Because, we are very close to the end of the church age or the age of Grace, whichever you choose to call it. How close, I can’t say. Make sure that your destination is with Jesus because eternity is a very long, long time to be without love or hope or light or compassion or any of the goodness which comes from God! None of those will be available in outer darkness where Satan and his followers will be.

There are only two sides to every conflict, one is good and the other is not. Black and white, yin and yang (except that the sides don’t have parts of the other in them), death or Life, so….choose.lifeordeath

Problems in our lives


How many problems do we all have today? That question alone could fill up many pages of text. Suffice to say, all of us have problems of one kind or another. Some of them are of our own making, some are caused by the economic conditions in the world today.

So, what can we do about our problems? Not much really. Individually, we have to notice what is going on before it becomes a problem. The same is true for states and nations, but that doesn’t always work. In our lives, as short as they are, problems are going to be a part of them and there is no reason to think otherwise.

Sounds pessimistic doesn’t it? Jesus told His disciples that we would always have trouble (tribulation) in this world but to be of good cheer because He had overcome the world. Will that help in today’s climate with wars happening all over, earthquakes and hurricanes happening in places where they haven’t in a while if ever? For some people, no it won’t because they don’t want to give their hearts to Jesus. They don’t want the peace which comes with knowing Him.

Why don’t they want this? I haven’t got the slightest idea. Jesus and the Holy Spirit give me the strength to get by and get through the problems which come up in my life and they can do this for you too. I don’t have the problems that many people have with their health, but I can’t work because of my disability (at least not at an 8 hour a day job). I preach on Sunday and I give these sermons here when the words come to me, but that is about all that I can accomplish.

It saddens me that I am like this, but I like to think it was because I was making a difference in some people’s lives and Satan tried to stop it. It didn’t work. I am not letting this get me down and you shouldn’t either! I have days where I am depressed, but I do my best to read in the Psalms and give it to God and let Him take care of it. I can’t get rid of the depression on my own, but He can.

Your problems may have to do with money or lack of a job or an illness, but God can take care of them all if you will let Him. God doesn’t move at our pace, He works in His time which is why we sometimes try to help Him get things done. That is the wrong thing to do because it just postpones His answer! He will let you give it a try, and He will give the problem back to you if you think you can do better, then He will sit back and watch. When you figure it out, then He will ask you in a small voice (if you are listening), “Are you ready for my solution yet?”.

God loves each of us more than we can imagine and since He lives outside of time, He can see down the road, so to speak, what is coming and what is best for us. He wants us to wait for His best! We just get impatient. It is important to add here something that I learned a LONG time ago: DON’T ASK GOD TO TEACH YOU PATIENCE! You won’t like His class on that at all!! Learn it at your own pace, teach yourself patience through the reading of His Word and then listen to Him and wait.

I promise, it will be worth it.

What is your trigger?


It seems that today, people get “ticked off” at the drop of a pin or anything that has happened to someone who they don’t know at all. Maybe they have something in common with that person and feel that it, whatever “it” was, was directed at them in general. Such as the people who protest against police violence toward “black men”. They are protesting because they perceive that all police are racist and have a chip on their shoulders against all people of color. Which is not true, but for some reason it is coming to the front of news stories more and more today. Why?

Some would say that it is because it is happening more often and that the violence is justified. The “trigger” is very subtle though and it is not happening more often, it is because everyone in the street has a smart phone and it is capable of recording video of anything, anywhere and at any time. There doesn’t have to be a news crew around, but by recording an event, regardless of its significance, and uploading it to the Internet then it may become newsworthy.

I have a trigger which moves me to pray for all of those who come to this site and read or just look around. I don’t know most of you, but God does. Even if you have never attended church or sat through a sermon, God knows who you are. He values you above the riches of the whole world. He loves you enough that if you were the last person on Earth, He would want you as His adopted child. It isn’t fear or anger or frustration which drives us, it is our collective need for this world to be healed and all of the problems which we face every day to be taken care of. Only Jesus can do this.

Other religions boast of having more followers or having larger church buildings or worship centers, it doesn’t matter what they are called. If you aren’t worshiping God and His Son, Jesus, then you are in the wrong building. I know, there are many who would tell me that my way of thinking is too small or non-inclusive of others, but aren’t most religions today? Islam doesn’t allow for other faiths, you have to accept theirs, yet no one ever tells them to be quiet and not pray or not tell others about their faith. It is the same with any other faith in the world, with the exception of Christianity. We, who are Christians, and believe God’s Word can’t read our Holy Scriptures in public. We cannot pray openly, we cannot tell others about our Savior because it offends people.

Jesus said to turn the other cheek when someone strikes you. I think we have done that far too often, yet we are still doing it. Why? Because, Jesus said for us to endure persecution to the end and we will be saved. Is this world going to be better in the future? Yes, it will when Jesus sets up His Kingdom and rules the world from Jerusalem. But, until that time comes we must endure.

Yes, there is anger and bitterness in many cities today but there is also…hope. Hope for tomorrow, hope for a peaceful day today, hope for reconciliation between police and those who protest against them. Where does this spirit of hope come from?

Jesus.

The world can’t give you hope, but He can. The world doesn’t care about you or your circumstances, but He does. The world is ruled by the spirit of Antichrist, Satan and his followers and it shows in the news and in our papers every day. Jesus loves you and wants all of us to share in His love but in order to do that, we need to accept Him and then share Him with others too.

Days, hours and minutes


I know, there are more divisions of time than just those but those three are the ones which we use every day. Why am I talking about ways to count down a day or a week or even a year? Because time is important to all of us at this point. When will we NOT need to worry or even think about hours and days or even years? In Heaven, in our eternity, that is when. Time is measured from the point of conception until our death because this body, this tabernacle that we live in only lasts a certain amount of time and God knows exactly how many years and seconds that each of us has.

We can’t imagine eternity because there is no time there, so when you cross over into it a minute could be a day or a few hours on Earth. So…what are we going to do with an eternity? I can’t say for sure but God has a plan and part of it will be during the one thousand years of Jesus’ reign after the Tribulation. That will be a time in which many advances in science and all sorts of things will likely happen. But, to those who have been given a glorified body even one thousand years won’t be a long time.

Our time is measured by the rotation of the Earth and its rotation around the Sun, it was set up to reflect perfect harmony and it is. Although, creation has been going down hill since Adam ate the fruit in Eden. When all is restored to perfection one day, we will know how the universe was supposed to be.Your fruit trees will produce fruit which tastes so much better than what we have now. The vegetables will be more flavorful. Even the air that we breathe will be cleaner and more invigorating.

Life won’t be the same anymore it will be more than we could imagine. This is even before most of us get into eternity. Time will be different, our lives will be different, the universe itself will be different but if you have given your heart and your life to Jesus…life will go on without end!

Time as we measure it now will be a thing of the past. Your life before eternity, before Heaven, before all of the wonders that we will share forever. Will it be hard to live this way? NO, because God will provide everything that you need! We won’t be thinking about bills or groceries because at this time, those are not necessary at all. The only people who won’t be enjoying eternity will be those who have doubted God’s grace and have not accepted Jesus as their Savior.

They will live in eternity but it will be one without God, without all of the nice parts of Heaven. No water, no food, no bearable temperatures but since you have an eternal body you won’t die either. It is YOUR choice which will send you to that place, not God. You will be there because you refused to give Jesus a place in your life and you wanted your “stuff” in this life. Think about it.

He is our Savior!


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God has done all that is needed through Jesus, our Savior, to save each and every one of us. All that is required of us is to believe like a child that He did it and ask Him to come into your life, into your heart and soul and you will be a new creation in His Image!

It doesn’t take your works or your money or strength to be saved and righteous enough to be allowed into Heaven because nothing that you or I can do in our strength is good enough to bring you into His Presence! He provided all that you need to be saved, all that you have to do is believe it and ask for it.

Unfortunately, many people look at this as being too simple, too easy. They want to help in some way. The problem with us helping is that we get in the way.

So, what will it take for you to believe in Him? People have been teaching that God punishes us so that we will learn certain things when the fact is that Satan is doing that. Of course, he won’t do that unless you are a Christian or you are thinking about becoming one because in the spiritual realm if you don’t belong to God then you are part of Satan’s group. I don’t mean that you worship him, but if you aren’t or you haven’t given your life to Jesus then as far as Satan is concerned you are not dangerous to his cause.

God loves you because He created you for a reason. What that reason is and when you might get busy with it is only known to Him until you are drawn to Him and make your decision to follow Him. The reason that I don’t make a distinction between God and Jesus is that they are part of the Trinity, which includes the Holy Spirit. All of them are part of One Creator. Like it or not they all show up in Scripture.

God has made a way for you to be saved from sin and the consequences of it, all you have to do is claim it. Will you?

Read the scriptures in Romans and John, not just one or two passages but all of them. Pray that God will show you why you need Him and how to come to Him. He loves you and He wants a relationship with you. It is up to you to seek Him, because He doesn’t force faith on you nor does He chase you down.

http://jesusfilmmedia.org/1_529-jf-0-0/

Meekness


Jesus_Loves_UI used to wonder what that was. What does it mean to be meek? Then I read a definition from the perspective of a horse trainer. He said that meekness is strength under submission. Like a horse who responds to a bridle and rider. The strength of the horse is many times that of the rider, yet a well-trained horse will be able to respond to the slightest touch or twitch of foot or bridle and will turn to the left or right or speed up or slow down in response. This is what meekness really is.

Regarding the life of a Christian, in today’s world, meekness is not so easy. Why do I say this? Because it implies that we are attentive to the will of God and will obediently follow His lead, His Word, His direction in our everyday lives. The problem is that we are not that attentive to Him. Some followers of Jesus may be, but on the whole most are not. We are too much like toddlers in that respect. We tend to say to God, “Me do it!”, even when we are not sure we can do it whatever “it” might be.

One other person who was described as meek was Moses. The man who led the people of Israel out of Egypt and into the wilderness by God’s direction. Meekness is not a description of someone who is weak, but of someone or something that is completely submitted to the One Who is in control. God loves us deeper and more completely than we can imagine, even when we haven’t accepted Him as our Savior or even acknowledged that He exists!

He knows each of us because He created each one of us and He accepts us for who we are, but He wants to become yours too! We belong to Him because He is our Creator, but He patiently waits for us to accept Him and He gives us a chance to learn to love Him for Who He is! It is our choice. Love cannot and will not be forced and that is why God created each of us and gave us that choice. Not because He doesn’t care, but mostly because He does!

All that God asks of us is that we decide to give our hurts and our pain to Him and understand that the pain won’t go away but His strength will be with us from that point on. Asking Him to come into your heart and mine is not a hard thing to do, but you have to come to a point where you feel the need for Him. He doesn’t push His way into your life and He won’t but when you ask Him to come in and make you a whole child of His…He will.

From that point on life will not be a bed of roses and it won’t really be better in physical ways, but spiritually you will be different. The person that you are, the one that God sees, will be whole and pure and your soul will be singing even if you can’t! Some people think that when you give your heart to Jesus and ask Him to come into your life that you won’t ever have any problems ever again. That is when the forces of this world take notice of you. Satan will not let you get away with being a voice for Jesus because he is going to try to stop you every way he can.

The best part of it is that you have Jesus on your side now and all you have to do is walk in step with Him every day. It sounds like a hard road but it isn’t, it is narrow and you do have to watch your steps some times because Satan will try to trip you and make you fall. Jesus will pick you up and carry you when the going gets particularly hard and He will give you strength to get through those times as well.

Love wins….


Your life and mine have been influenced by love at one time or another. It could be when we were small children and we could tell that our grandma loved us by the way she spoke to us or played with us. Love is expressed in many ways and in many different cultures. Some are very affectionate, some are not. Parents are this way too. Some express their love for their children and their spouse by gifts, some by physical expressions such as a kiss or a hug. The best way to show your love toward someone is by being present. Be there with them during special occasions or just be with them period. Don’t be an absentee Dad or Mom, because that makes your children feel like you don’t care. This is especially true with your spouse. Be there when they come home, physically and mentally. It is too easy to be there in person but “zone out” into your own world when they are talking to you.

Why am I writing this on Easter Sunday? Because, we need to be present physically and spiritually in our relationships with God too! Don’t show up once a week, listen to a sermon, sing a couple of songs and then forget everything that you heard as soon as you leave! Some people even leave their Bibles at church during the week! How can you read and study God’s Word and get to know Him better if you don’t read His Word?!

I used an illustration this morning and I am not sure it sunk into everyone’s mind when I did it, and it went something like this: How would you feel if you only saw your spouse for about an hour one day per week? They never read your letters or poems which tell of all that you have done in times past or what is happening right now. Would this relationship be a good one? I don’t think that you would be in a relationship like that for very long, do you?

But, this is how many people treat God when they go to church. They visit for an hour or so, listen to the sermon and maybe read a few verses in the Bible. The sing and pray along with everyone else and then they go their separate ways until the next time. What kind of relationship is that? It really isn’t a relationship at all, but “Christians” do this to God every week. Why? Pride, selfishness, fear, apathy…these have infected the church and its people and this began a long, long, time ago. This is not something new. It isn’t something that is only happening in the 21st. century. This has been building up for a long time.

True, there are some Christians who are very dedicated to serving God and reading His Word, praying for others and for each other. These are the ones that you read about in the Scripture where it says that God has saved Himself a remnant. There are many who think that they are saved and in good standing with God but they are not. Sometimes, I wonder if I am in that group who thinks they are saved but aren’t. I think that is Satan trying to take my joy away from me, which he does easily if you listen to him much.

Some days, it is hard to only hear what God is saying but if you read His Word and learn how His voice sounds then you can discern His voice from another’s. Love shows through all of the areas in your life and mine, especially where God is involved in it. God is love and Jesus was God’s perfect expression of His Love for us, but many people don’t look at it that way. Many people today try to say that we are bigots and hateful preachers for preaching the Truth from God’s Word, instead of coating it with sugary words and making it say one thing or two that God did not say. This is happening in churches today, and many of those churches have large congregations. People like to be told that they are OK and that God loves them just as they are.

He really does love you just as you are, but He also wants your life to change when you open your heart to Him so that others can see a difference in your life and they want what you have! Telling someone their sins that they are living in are OK with God when they are not is just plain and simply a LIE FROM SATAN. Seek Him out while you can because your sin will show up very plainly when you are standing in front of God at your judgement! Without Jesus and His blood covering your sins and making you as righteous and Holy as Jesus is, you will go into hell because you turned away from Him while you had the chance or you were fooled into thinking that you were saved when you really weren’t.

Think about it while you can.

Prayer and faith


Praisethelord Yes, both are necessary for a Christian and for our world too. Why do I say this? Because there are so many people who don’t want to admit this or hear it. Prayer and praise go together with faith and all of it is needed today. Because life and living today is hard enough without having faith in a future with Jesus. Prayer and faith go hand in hand, but it seems that many people don’t believe in having faith in a God which they can’t see. You can’t touch or see any of the “gods” which are worshiped in the world today, many of them are actually dead and in their graves yet people still think that they are “gods”. If they were then they wouldn’t be dead!

Satan is a fallen archangel, a guardian seraphim and one that once lived on the “mount of God” but pride brought him down because he thought that he could be like God and take God’s place. No one can do that but he convinced enough of the angels to follow him until there were a third of the angels thrown down from Heaven. We don’t know how many this was, but considering how much our world is in such a mess today it was a LOT!

Today it seems that nobody wants to acknowledge God as the Creator, but He is and He is NOT dead! Seek Him out while there is still time to do so. Read John 3:16,17; Romans 8 too, because they tell you what and Who you should know and why.

Time waits for no one


eternityEvery year you hear someone on television saying that their resolution for the year is to spend more time with their family. It is usually a different person saying this every year but the sentiment and the reality are the same…we feel as if we don’t have enough time. As you get older, the days and weeks seem to go by faster and just mush into one another until, if you are like me, you can barely tell one day from the next.

There are days that I have had to pay attention to the television set or the computer screen just to keep the days separated, so I will know what day it is. I know that those of you who are going to school or work don’t really have this problem because your days revolve around your schedule. But, it is true that time doesn’t wait for anyone. Consider that on New Year’s Day at midnight when the year and the date changed, that specific time period will never happen again.

A few years ago before we got out of the first decade of the 21st century, you could have months where the day, month and year were all the same number. Those won’t recur until another century has passed, and even when they do technology will have changed, our culture and society will not be the same. Nothing repeats itself exactly because once a minute is gone, the things which happened in that minute are in the past.

The best part about our life today is that we, as Christians, serve a God Who can see those seconds and minutes and hours and years even when they have past. Time is not the same for God because He lives outside of time. Just as we will when we are in Heaven. Eternity begins the second that you take your last breath here. One year will be nothing when you are there. Ten thousand years will seem like a day or two, maybe.

Consider where your time will be spent and how much time that you think you have now. Think about your family and friends, where will they be in eternity? Have you considered it for yourself? Don’t put this decision off because you think you have plenty of time, that is a lie from Satan himself and he gets plenty of people to believe it. Those who died the next day thought they had more time. The only time that you have is right now. Make sure that you are absolutely sure and positive about your eternal home. One of them you will enjoy, the other you will not.

When God orders…


“A very poor woman called a Christian radio station asking for help. A bad, evil man who was listening to this radio program decided to make something out of it…. He got her address, called his secretary and ordered her to buy food and take to the woman with the following instruction., “when the woman asks who sent the food, tell her that it’s from the
devil.”

When she arrived, the woman was so happy and she started putting the food inside. The Secretary asked her, ”don’t you want to know who sent the food”?? The woman answered. ”NO , it doesn’t matter, because when GOD orders, even the devil obeys.” The secretary broke into tears.

God is in charge no matter what is happening or what the “news” says about the situation.