September 20. 2020

The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. – 1 Timothy 4:1 NIV

Warrior;

Wikipedia defines Apostasy in Christianity as the rejection of Christ by someone who formerly was a Christian. The English word apostasy has its origins in the Greek term apostasia. It means desertion or withdrawal. It refers to ‘walking away’ from, or leaving behind the COMMANDS of the Most High. It has been described as “a willful falling away from, or rebellion against, Christianity. However, like with many marriages, families, jobs and relationships, many people stay present physically but departed emotionally, years earlier. Another form of apostasy is to “play the part’ without feeling it in the heart! To go through the motions with NO emotional commit or connection. Without that UNCTION, there will be no internal change, or worse there will be an internal change in the wrong direction! Apostasy is abandoning or deserting the worship and service of God, actually a rebellion against Jehovah God. Some apostates profess to know and serve God but reject teachings or requirements set out in His Word.

Leader, don’t be fooled by what they say. For that day will not come until there is a great rebellion against God and the man of lawlessness is revealed—the one who brings destruction. ( 2 Thessalonians 2:3) Apostasy has been called a form of idolatry. The root cause of apostasy is the ability of man to think idolatrous thoughts and following from this, to seek his sustenance and material prosperity outside of the will of God. Idolatry leads to apostasy, or apostasy leads to idolatry- either way, they are interconnected. The Book of Isaiah opens with God giving a pattern of history, what a nation goes through, as they fall into DECLINE. Dr. J Vernon McGee said, “In the Book of Judges a great principle of government is presented, a principle which is also stated very clearly in the prophecy of Isaiah. All of the subsequent prophets simply bear out and apply this principle which has already been stated. The principle is this: There are three steps in the downfall of a nation. First of all, there is religious apostasy. The second step is moral awfulness. And the third step is political anarchy. These are the three steps by which nations pass off the stage of human history. That has always been the way it has moved. If you want to know just how up–to–date the Book of Judges is, listen to the words of the late General Douglas MacArthur: “In this day of gathering storms, as moral deterioration of political power spreads its growing infection, it is essential that every spiritual force be mobilized to defend and preserve the religious base upon which this nation is founded; for it has been that base which has been the motivating impulse to our moral and national growth. History fails to record a single precedent in which nations subject to moral decay have not passed into political and economic decline. There has been either a spiritual reawakening to overcome the moral lapse, or a progressive deterioration leading to ultimate national disaster.”

Conduit, in the book, “Victorious Christianity”, it is recorded; great secular historian Edward Gibbon, identified 5 reasons for the decline and fall of the Roman Empire. 1. The rapid increase of divorce and “the undermining of the dignity and sanctity of the home, which is the basis of human society.” Now that is not being said by me, a little evangelical preacher—that is the great Edward Gibbon, and, of course, he is right. The home is the fundamental unit in society and once the home goes, everything will go, sooner or later. 2.“Higher and higher taxes and the spending of public monies on bread and circuses.” 3. “The mad craze for pleasure and sport; sport becoming every year more and more exciting and brutal.” 4. “The building of gigantic armaments when the real enemy is within—in the decadence of the people themselves.” 5. “The decay of religious faith; faith fading into mere form which has lost all contact with reality.” Habakkuk 2:18-20 has this to say: Of what value is an idol, since a man has carved it? Or an image that teaches lies? For he who makes it trusts in his own creation; he makes idols that cannot speak. Woe to him who says to wood, ‘Come to life!’ Or to lifeless stone, ‘Wake up!’ Can it give guidance? It is covered with gold and silver; there is no breath in it. But the LORD is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him. Idolatry\Apostasy can be considered worse than the other sins. Not only does it violate the 1st Commandment, it is an abandoning of God to a false religion and replacing the irreplaceable with something that can never truly satisfy! “Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead.” Return to the LORD your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish”. (Joel 2:13) “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near.” Come quickly Lord!

September 19. 2020

The word of the LORD that came to Zephaniah the son of Cushi. “I will utterly sweep away everything from the face of the earth,” declares the LORD. “I will sweep away man and beast; I will sweep away the birds of the heavens and the fish of the sea, and the rubble with the wicked. I will cut off mankind from the face of the earth,” declares the LORD. -Zephaniah 1:1a,2-3

Warrior;
We see people in the streets of America rioting, looting, burning down buildings and businesses with Black Lives Matter and Antifa and we see the placards and we hear the chants, “No Justice, No Peace!”. There is an old saying, “Be careful what you ask for”. Justice is an interesting word, because for man, justice for one is injustice for another. And whenever we talk about JUSTICE, there must be a JUDGE! That is what the book of Zephaniah is about, it is about THE DAY OF THE LORD. The ‘Day of the Lord’ refers to the GREAT TRIBULATION, the times written about as God’s judgement of man and of earth. The book of REVELATION should be read by every follower of Jesus Christ, so we can know how God plans to wrap up the Time of the Gentiles and bring in the Millennial Rule. Zephaniah is a book of Love, it is covering the dark side of Love, the side where there are consequences for promises made and commitments broken. It is a cleansing of the past, so we can start anew in our relationship. Dr. J Vernon McGee does a great explanation of this fine book in his, “Through the Bible” tour that can be found at http://www.ttb.org. He is the one that calls the book of Zephaniah, one of the least read books because of the theme of judgment- as the book of Love, the “Dark side of Love”. He says it is similar to the Gospel of John, the Gospel of Love. It takes a true follower of Jesus Christ to understand this about God’s Righteous, Just, Love!

Leader, Proverbs 13:24 says; Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them. Spare the rod and spoil the child- Discipline is necessary for good upbringing, it is what Dr. McGee called, “The Dark side of love”. As the saying goes, if you discipline properly, “This is going to hurt me more, than it hurts you”. As a parent if we let our children do whatever they want with no consequences, you might end up with kids in the streets disrespecting law enforcement officers, attacking each other, looting and rioting with little consequence and the burning of our cities in the name of justice. This adage, this truth, this violation of the “law of causality’ is so powerful that it appears in the Bible and made its way into practically every proverb collection. God is truth and you will read in His word the same LAW. “My son do not take lightly the discipline of the Lord, and do not lose heart when He rebukes you. For the Lord disciplines the one He loves, and He chastises every son He receives.” Endure suffering as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? If you do not experience discipline like everyone else, then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. Furthermore, we have all had earthly fathers who disciplined us, and we respected them. Should we not much more submit to the Father of our spirits and live? (Hebrews 12:4b-9)

Conduit, Zephaniah is the last of the prophets. He uses the term, “The Day of the Lord”, 7 times in this small book. Judah and Israel had been warned by minor and major prophets for hundreds of years, and there was no change in behavior. When there was a change of behavior, like under king Josiah, it did not last long, and the people went right back to apostasy. The warnings were not heeded, so now the consequences are coming. Seek the LORD while you can find him. Call on him now while he is near. Let the wicked change their ways and banish the very thought of doing wrong. Let them turn to the LORD that he may have mercy on them. Yes, turn to our God, for he will forgive generously. “My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:6-9) The prophet Habakkuk listed The Five Woes Against Society: The first woe; Theft and a Lust for Control. The Second Woe; Greed and Unjust Gain. The Third Woe; Violence (yet with a small glimpse of a better time to come!) The Fourth Woe; Drunkenness, Lust & Corrupting Others. The Fifth and Final Woe – Idolatry. Zephaniah focuses on Idolatry, turning from the True and Living God to other gods. The god of self, pleasure, self-righteousness, fame, fortune, lust, self-gratification…. However, when it comes down to it idolatry is FALSE RELIGION. The fall of America has a lot to do with WE, the church. We have moved away from teaching and learning the FULL GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST. We treat Jesus like he is some buddy of ours that loves us no matter what we think, say or do. Whether you have truly accepted Christ, or not- He loves you and we WILL EXPERIENCE the Dark Side of Love! Remember, The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9) Repent (change your mind, turn, do something different) for the KINGDOM OF GOD is at hand! But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

September 18. 2020

“I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. – Revelation 2:2-4 ESV

Warrior;
We must have a HIERARCHY of relationships. If we don’t know what relationships, belong where on our hierarchy, then how do we know where to spend our time? Relationships TAKE TIME, intimate relationships take an emotional investment, they require UNCTION; an excessive, affected, sometimes cloying earnestness or fervor in manner- the manifestation of SPIRITUAL INSPIRATION! Do you feel this daily for JESUS and HIS WORD and TIME with HIM?

Leader, the term “hierarchy” comes from the Greek hieros, meaning “powerful, supernatural, or sacred,” and arche, which means “beginning” or “rule.” The implication is that the levels of a hierarchy get closer and closer to the source or beginning of that which is most sacred or powerful. This implication has also led to the use of the term hierarchy to refer to any graded or ranked series, such as a person’s “hierarchy of values,” or a machine’s “hierarchy of responses.”

Conduit, the connotation of hierarchy is that those elements at the top of the hierarchy “come first,” or are “more important” than those at the lower levels. Years ago, there was a slogan, “I AM SECOND”. I found that put me way TOO HIGH on the list! God commands an order; GOD 1st, Spouse 2nd, kids 3rd, 4th, 5th and maybe 6th, our purpose and reason for service to God is 7th and then we come in 8th? To LIVE is Christ to DIE is gain! If God isn’t NUMBER 1 and at the top of your list- then it doesn’t matter the ORDER! Today, RE-MEMBER your first love and spend time, and emotion getting to KNOW HIM better and MAKE HIM known! For it is written, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. (Romans 14:11-12)

September 17. 2020

All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. – 2 Corinthians 5:18-20 ESV

Warrior;
John MacArthur put it this way: “Paul was committed to the proclamation of the gospel, unstintingly, unhesitatingly, and unreservedly. And that is what we are called to do. We announce that God can be reconciled to doomed sinners, the greatest news the world has ever heard. If you look at just the enmity between God and man, it might appear at first hopeless. A perfect, infinite, holy, flawless, righteous God whose justice must be satisfied by the punishment of all who have violated His laws and standing under the looming sword of judgment is the helpless sinner who can’t please God at all and cannot change his condition. A holy God whose justice must be satisfied, a helpless sinner who can do nothing at all to satisfy it. Man, then stands in a doomed position. The relationship seems irreversible. And frankly, from man’s side it is. Happily, from God’s side, it is not.”

Leader, Continuing MacArthur’s thought: “There is actually a way to satisfy God’s justice. to satisfy His wrath and vengeance against sin, and still reconcile sinners. That is the supreme and sublime reality, that is our message, that is what we preach. We can get caught on all kinds of peripheral issues. We can…we can find ourselves messing around with the fringe elements. But sooner or later this is the core of everything we do. God can be reconciled to sinners. And to us is committed that ministry of reconciliation by preaching the word of reconciliation. A.T. Robertson, many years ago, said, “The pulpit is the Golgotha on which the preacher gives his life for the reconciliation of the world.” This is our calling.” Are you answering the call? God is wanting to make things new- ALL THINGS Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17)

Conduit, Reconciliation is a divine provision by which God’s holy displeasure against man was appeased; hostility removed- relation restored! “For if while we were sinners we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more having been reconciled we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ through whom we have now received the reconciliation.” (Romans 5:10) Reconciliation is by the WILL OF GOD. Sinners- you and me; have NO POWER to satisfy God’s anger, NO POWER to satisfy God’s holy justice, NO POWER to satisfy God’s standard of righteousness. We can change nothing on our own, nor do we initiate! Sinners are simply offenders who have broken the law of God and therefore are banished eternally from God’s presence. Any change that is going to come about in that relationship has to come from God! This is the GOSPEL: God so loved sinners that He sought a way of reconciliation. He sought a way to make sinners His friends while maintaining His ‘JUSTness’. If RECONCILIATION was going to happen- it was on HIM! The falsity of ALL RELIGIONS is based on the premise that somehow man can find a means by which to somehow mitigate the hostility of God. GOD chose you, GOD LOVED you first, GOD SOUGHT you, and GOD reconciled you to HIM! God did all the work; IT IS FINISHED! GIVE HIM ALL the GLORY! Amen!

Asking for help from Gods people

Hello All-

Daily, for almost 8 years I have answered Gods call to send out scripture and feed people. I have been diligent in keeping this task going!!

With Covid 19 lockdowns and shut downs, we are struggling. We need some financial help- we are dying on the vine!!

The Bible is clear:
If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion—how can God’s love be in that person? 1 John 3:17

If God moves you to help me financially, it would be a blessing to me and my family and to our Lord!!

Thank you in advance for being the hands and feet of God!

https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=T6FQ9EVCYAQPG&source=url

September 16. 2020

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. – Ephesians 4:32 NIV

Warrior;

Here it is, proof that what is going on in our streets is NOT OF GOD, from God, or glorifying to God.  At some point, God’s opinion needs to override the worlds opinion.  We need to decide which kingdom we belong to- the Kingdom of Light or the Kingdom of Darkness?  We must choose, because if we attempt to have one foot in each Kingdom, we have NO FOOT IN GOD’S KINGDOM!  Like a good parent repeats important, foundational actions and beliefs to the point of redundant recitations, there are multiple verses commanding us to “forgive one another” (Matthew 6:14, Colossians 3:13, Luke 17:3-4) A Christian who is not willing to forgive others will find his fellowship with God hindered (Matthew 6:15) and can reap bitterness and the loss of reward (Hebrews 12:14–15; 2 John 1:8). More importantly, we reject THE WAY that the LORD HIMSELF showed us was the GODLY way! When they came to a place called The Skull, they nailed him to the cross. And the criminals were also crucified—one on his right and one on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” And the soldiers gambled for his clothes by throwing dice. (Luke 23:33-34)

Leader, it is about choices, God gives us free will! Forgiveness is a decision of the will. Since God commands us to forgive, we must make a conscious choice to obey God and forgive. The offender may not desire forgiveness and may not ever change, but that doesn’t negate God’s desire that we possess a forgiving spirit. “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 5:43-45a) Ideally, the offender will seek reconciliation, but, if not, the one wronged, is still called to make a decision to forgive. If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. (Colossians 3:1,12-13)

Conduit, did you pick that up? God said IF you have been raised with CHRIST, THEN you MUST forgive! It is not a suggestion, IT IS DEMANDED, we call that a COMMANDMENT! “But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your transgressions.” (Mark 11:26) There is no place in the heart of a TRUE FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST for keeping a RECORD OF WRONG, to keep your, POUND OF FLESH! Before our verse of the day, v32, the 4thchapter of Ephesians lays the foundation of what it looks like, sounds like and feels like to forgive; Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil. (ibid v26-27) Black Lives Matter is the devil taking the opportunity of LACK OF FORGIVENESS, Pound-of flesh taking, RECORD KEEPING- an opportunity for the DEVIL to steal and kill and destroy. (See John 10:10 and what we watch on the NIGHTLY news with BLM riots and killing of cops). GOD IS THE JUST, He is the judge, God says, “I WILL TAKE CARE OF IT, if you just forgive!” Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” (Romans 12:9) Quit playing God, by exacting your pound of flesh and DEMANDING JUSTICE, or NO PEACE! KNOW JESUS, know peace. NO JESUS, NO PEACE! Quit playing God, let God be God- He is the judge. If you won’t stop playing God, then BE HIS SON, and FORGIVE! When Jesus got squeezed by life, what came out of HIM-FORGIVENESS! Be a CHRIST-LIKE SPONGE and put forgiveness in your heart! When we CHOOSE to do that we will respond differently to the injustices of this world! If you will forgive in your heart, then when the unfairness, unjustness of life comes at you- what comes out of you will be FORGIVENESS, MERCY and GRACE! Just like Jesus!

September 15. 2020

There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all. There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord. God works in different ways, but it is the same God who does the work in all of us. A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other. To one person the Spirit gives the ability to give wise advice; to another the same Spirit gives a message of special knowledge. The same Spirit gives great faith to another, and to someone else the one Spirit gives the gift of healing. He gives one person the power to perform miracles, and another the ability to prophesy. He gives someone else the ability to discern whether a message is from the Spirit of God or from another spirit. Still another person is given the ability to speak in unknown languages, while another is given the ability to interpret what is being said. It is the one and only Spirit who distributes all these gifts. He alone decides which gift each person should have. – 1 Corinthians 12:4-11NLT

Warrior;
You are unique, there is nobody else out there like you. Since the beginning of time there has never been another person like you. Nobody has your smile, your eyes, your hands, your hair. Nobody owns your handwriting or your voice. In all of time, there has never been anybody who laughs in exactly your way. And what makes you laugh, or cry, or think, may have a totally different response in another. You are the only one in the whole of creation who has your particular set of abilities. Stop comparing yourself and your life and your gifts and talents with everybody else, because God has a different walk with you! We serve a PERSONAL GOD. Some of the founding Fathers were Deists. Deists believed in an impersonal God. They believed that God pressed the “play” button, but wasn’t involved in the intimate details of our lives. The psalmist tells us, “he knows our frame”. He told Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” In the sermon on the mount Jesus told us, “He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust”. God is intimately involved in encouraging us, and exhorting us, to be ALL HE CREATED US TO BE!

Leader, because we do not fit in this world, we will need encouragement on this journey. The Bible is a book of encouragement, it gives us hope, that is why it is called, THE GOSPEL, which means GOOD NEWS! If you have ever had a bad day, or a bad week, or year- you know that GOOD NEWS can be an encouragement. In John 14:1 Jesus encourages us, “Let not your hearts be troubled.” Since we are NOT of this world, but we are IN this world, it can become discouraging. Coronavirus, lockdowns, lost houses, lost businesses, our cities being looted and burned down, race-wars being propagated by the media and progressives- we need some ENCOURAGEMENT! For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11) God is the ultimate encourager and He wants us to BE LIKE HIM and “put courage” into others. It is a gifting, it is a choice and it is NEEDED! We have many people that want to teach others, but what we need is people encouraging each other to allow themselves to be USED by God to reach their God-given potential! The gift of encouragement or exhortation differs from the gift of teaching in that exhortation focuses on the practical application of the Bible. The gift of teaching focuses on the meaning and content of the Word, one with the gift of encouragement focuses on the practical application of the Word. He or she can relate to others, in groups and individually, with understanding, sympathy, and positive guidance. Teaching says, “This is the way you should go”; encouragement says, “I will help you go that way.” A person with the gift of encouragement can help another person move from pessimism to optimism.

Conduit, exhortation is a gift of God and a gift to others. To understand the word, we need to go to the original language. Paraklésis carries the idea of bringing someone closely alongside in order to “exhort,” “urge,” “encourage,” “give joy,” and “comfort” him or her. All of these actions make up the gift of encouragement. Interestingly, when Jesus conversed with His disciples on the night of His arrest, He spoke of the Holy Spirit as the “Helper” or “Comforter” (John 14:16, 26; 15:26), which is why the Holy Spirit is sometimes referred to as the “Paraclete,” the One who comes alongside to exhort and encourage us. One of the best examples of someone with the gift of encouragement is Barnabas. His real name was Joseph, however, his name was changed to “Barnabas,” which means “son of encouragement” (Acts 4:36). Barnabas encouraged the newly converted SAUL when others in the church were wary of him. (Acts 9:27) In Acts 15:36–41; Barnabas chooses John Mark as a ministry partner, despite Mark’s having deserted a previous mission endeavor with Paul. To Paul’s disagreement, Barnabas gave Mark a second chance. John Mark went on to write the Gospel of Mark. Barnabas continually evidenced the gift of encouragement, calling others to his side in order to help, comfort, and encourage them to become more effective for Christ. Remember his name was Joseph, but God called him to be an encourager, and it changed his identity! Today, change your identity, be THE ONE. to put courage into others! Today come alongside a brother or a sister in need and give them a HAND UP, a PICK ME UP, or a LOOK UP. We all need encouragement to be at the place where PAUL wound up: I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. May God put an encourager in your life! Today, may you be the answer to prayer and be someone else’s son/daughter of encouragement!

September 14. 2020

The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers. Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. – 1 Peter 4: 7-11 ESV

Warrior;

God knows our frame, He created us, He knew us before we were, and he knew our last day before our first day!  God has a plan and we are part of HIS PLAN, we are part of HIS STORY…or HISTORY! Jesus walked with his disciples, after He had walked with God, He fellowshipped with them, He Taught them, He rebuked them, He prepared the, He encouraged them, and He gifted them.  Then He was no longer going to BE WITH THEM, He said, He would send another to be with them in HIS STEAD. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. (John 14:16-17)) God sent the Holy Spirit, the PARACLETE, to come alongside us, and to ENCOURAGE US!  The Holy Spirit is a gift, a DOWNPAYMENT of the great things that God gives to those who love Him, who are called according to HIS PURPOSE.  

Leader, Jesus gifted the 12, and the people of their time, one of the greatest gifts ever- HE WALKED AMONG THEM. He was physically present so He could touch them, they could see HIM, they could hear Him and learn from Him, they could sit with Him and converse with HIM. What a GIFT, what a BLESSING. Even though Jesus is not physically with us today, He is with us in HIS WORD, and He is with us through the HOLY SPIRIT, and HE IS WITH US through the BLESSINGS OF OTHERS, He puts in our lives. Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures. (James 1:16-18) Jesus told us, WE WILL BE A GIFT to other believers. How are we a GIFT TO OTHERS? By exercising our GIFTS FROM HIM! For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but think of yourself with sober judgment, according to the measure of faith God has given you. Just as each of us has one body with many members, and not all members have the same function, so in Christ we who are many are one body, and each member belongs to one another. We have different gifts according to the grace given us. If one’s gift is prophecy, let him use it in proportion to his faith; if it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is giving, let him give generously; if it is leading, let him lead with diligence; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. (Romans 12:3-8)

Conduit, Jesus was our example, He showed us the way, because HE told us, HE IS THE WAY. (John 14:6) In Isaiah 11:1-2, we are foretold what Gifts Jesus would possess: There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit. AND the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD. Ephesians 4:7-8 tells us that when Jesus ascended to the throne room of God, He left departing gifts for His children: Now to each one of us grace has been given according to the measure of the gift of Christ. This is why it says: “When He ascended on high, He led captives away, and gave gifts to men.” He told us that He would gift us the HOLY SPIRIT, the Paraclete, who would COME BESIDE us, COMFORT us, ENCOURAGE us, TEACH US. We have also been blessed by other believers whose job is similar to the Holy Spirit- to come alongside us and encourage us, exhort us! One of the greatest gifts that God gives us is in the people He puts in our lives. In these last days, in these DARK DAYS, in these WEIRD DAYS, in these HARD DAYS- we need encouragement! Interesting how the Greek word for Encourage, Exhort is similar to the word used for THE HELPER, the HOLY SPIRIT. The gift of encouragement or exhortation is found in Paul’s list of gifts in Romans 12:7-8. The word most often translated “exhort” or “exhortation” comes from the Greek word paraklésis, which means “to call to one’s side; to summon, encourage, admonish, entreat.” To exhort is to develop relationships with other believers for the purpose of encouraging them in their spiritual growth. We are called to be a CONDUIT of HOPE, and encouragement to other believers, while we wait for the return of our Lord! Today, check yourself, examine your life: How many people do you encourage on a daily basis? How many people do you pour into daily, as Jesus pours into you? Are you a GIFT? To whom is blessed by the gift of your ENCOURAGEMENT? Is it time for an, UP UNTIL NOW moment, in the field of encouragement? Today, BE THE GIFT!

September 13. 2020


Teach and urge these things. If anyone teaches a different doctrine and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching that accords with godliness, he is puffed up with conceit and understands nothing. He has an unhealthy craving for controversy and for quarrels about words, which produce envy, dissension, slander, evil suspicions, and constant friction among people who are depraved in mind and deprived of the truth, imagining that godliness is a means of gain. – 1 Timothy 6:2b-5 ESV

Warrior;

What an interesting time we live in.  Not a surprising time, for it has been talked about for thousands of years, by Biblical scholars.  The time we are in has been read about in the scriptures and studied by those who seek the LORD and study HIS WORD.  But you must remember, beloved, the predictions of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ.  They said to you, “In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions.”  It is these who cause divisions, worldly people, devoid of the Spirit. (Jude 1:18-19) This is now the second letter that I am writing to you, beloved. In both of them I am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder,  that you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior through your apostles,  knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. (2 Peter 3:1-3) Remember, it is impossible to please God without Faith!  “Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned/ credited/ accounted to him as righteousness” (Romans 4:3). The same verb is used by Paul when he asks that any debt owed by Onesimus-the escaped slave who stole from his Master Philemon-be put to the Apostle ‘s own account (Philemon 1:18)

Leader, Faith requires a gap. If you can see how all the pieces connect, if you can do it without God, if there is NO uncertainty, if there is no ‘alternate’ data that creates a fleshly doubt…then, THERE IS NO FAITH! Faith is believing what God says, that God is in control even when your fleshly eyes, ears and feelings tell you something different. Is God in control or are you in a series of random acts that are driven by happenstance? God has perfect knowledge, He is OMNISCIENT. There has never been an emergency meeting of the TRINITY! God knows all — past, present, and future — and providentially controls all that happens, there is no meaningless suffering. The reasons for our pain may often remain mysterious, but there is no doubt that the Lord works for our good and His glory in all our difficulties and pain (Rom. 8:18, 28). He is never surprised by our suffering, and He is NOT disappointed by our response! He understands our frame, for He said, “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart”. Psalm 139:16 tells us, “Your eyes saw my unformed body; all my days were written in Your book and ordained for me before one of them came to be”. For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust. (Psalm 103:14)

Conduit, God permits the trials to come. God is in control of the trials. God enables us to bear them and whether we live or die, God will deliver us from them. Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you. Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world. (1 Peter 4:12-13) In Romans. the 12th chapter. Paul elucidates our litmus test in these END TIMES, let us meditate on these CLEAR instructions for these CONFUSING times. Under the heading of ‘Marks of the TRUE CHRISTIAN’: Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:9-21) These are our marching orders from our Commander! GENERAL JESUS, reporting for duty! Use me LORD, change me LORD, let your words be my words, let YOUR WAY be my way, let YOUR WILL be MY WILL! I ask this in the name of the Son of Man, the ONE who was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces, He was despised, and we esteemed Him not- the name of Jesus. Amen!

September 12. 2020

For they don’t understand God’s way of making people right with himself. Refusing to accept God’s way, they cling to their own way of getting right with God by trying to keep the law. For Christ has already accomplished the purpose for which the law was given. As a result, all who believe in him are made right with God. -Romans 10:3-4 NLT

Warrior;

The prophet Isaiah got a WORD from GOD: Therefore, this is what the Sovereign LORD says: “Look! I am placing a foundation stone in Jerusalem, a firm and tested stone. It is a precious cornerstone that is safe to build on. Whoever believes need never be shaken. I will test you with the measuring line of justice and the plumb line of righteousness.(28:16-17a). Only Jesus can keep the Law of God’s righteousness. If we focus our attention on the LAW, our sinful nature will consume us! We can’t be GOODNUFF for GOD!

Leader, by focusing our attention on Jesus, we will be changed into HIS IMAGE. This is the image we were created to BEAR! In HIM there is NO SIN! This is why we are called to seek ye first the kingdom of God, and HIS righteousness! The LORD made us with the eyes in the front of our face because we MOVE in the direction we are LOOKING and we LOOK in the direction we are MOVING! Are you moving to be more like God or more like a better MAN? Matthew 5:17 reminds us, JESUS did not make an end to the LAW- by negating it, but by FULFILLING IT! HE has become our RIGHTEOUSNESS. When we “practice our righteousness” we are ABIDING IN HIM!

Conduit, for by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin. (Rom 3:20) Jesus is the Cornerstone of creation. He is the only foundation for human life. When HE IS firmly placed in our lives- WE WILL NOT BE SHAKEN! When we have been BORN AGAIN in the SPIRIT, changes in our personality, our thoughts, actions and words- will come from WITHIN, and no longer from WITHOUT! IN HIM, we no longer are moved by FEAR; rejection, embarrassment, loss or even loss of LIFE! In HIM we do not live in fear, but we WALK BY FAITH! And we REMEMBER: God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Cor 5:21)