November 14. 2019

“You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet. “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. -Matthew 5:13-16 ESV

Warrior;

One of the strange seemingly dichotomies of a believer is to be IN the world, but NOT BE, OF the world. John 15:19; If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you. John 17:14-16; I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I do not ask You to take them out of the world, but to keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. “In” the World: It’s Our Point of Location. “Of” the World: It’s Our Source of Information

Leader, Salt and Light are used as metaphors by Jesus because the world is CORRUPT, and the world is DARK! And if we are going to be IN this corrupt and dark world we are to CHANGE IT, instead of IT, CHANGING US! Based on scripture as bad as things are- they are getting worse! Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. (2 Timothy 3:12-13) This is a warning to us to not LOSE our SALTINESS or to NOT LOSE our LIGHT! The darker things get in life, the brighter light shines. And the less seasoning and preservation the more IMPACT the salt!

Conduit, the Holy Spirit works through us and we can PRESERVE people and bring FLAVOR to a bland world. Salt can be used as a preservative- to slow down the corruption. Salt can also be used to MELT ICE- or a cold heart- and SALT ads flavor and SALT makes us THIRST! Are you making others THIRST for WHO you follow, for what you BELIEVE? First you are salt then you are light. Salt works from within, light from without. Light allows for others to see what is hidden, light allows others to walk safely in an unsafe environment and light allows for people to walk sure footedly and with confidence. When light shows up, darkness goes away! Today, add some HEAVENLY FLAVOR to others lives, and add some confidence and clarity to their journey! Help others hunger and thirst for our LORD and help them have eyes to see so they may walk confidently on the narrow path that most people can’t FIND, because it is so dark in this world! Light and Salt- BE SOME and GIVE SOME! Amen!

November 13. 2019

By the word of the LORD the heavens were made, and by the breath of his mouth all their host. he gathers the waters of the sea as a heap; he puts the deeps in storehouses. Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him! for he spoke and it came to be; he commanded and it stood firm. -Ps 33:6-9 ESV

Warrior;

Is this the GOD you worship? The God of the Bible, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? The God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego- the God of Isaiah, Elijah and Daniel? DO YOU AWE GOD? Psalm 19:1 affirms; The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Psalm 65:8 directs; They who dwell in the ends of the earth stand in awe of Your signs; You make the dawn and the sunset shout for joy. And Isaiah asks; “Who has measured the Spirit of the LORD, or what man shows him his counsel? Whom did he consult, and who made him understand? Who taught him the path of justice, and taught him knowledge, and showed him the way of understanding?” (Is 40:13-14)

Leader, do you know this God? Do you TRUST that GOD is still in control, that HE IS still on HIS THRONE? When people look at the DARKNESS and EVIL that is prevalent and growing in this world and in the church- people doubt if GOD IS STILL IN CONTROL! God sits above time and He is working all things for the GOOD of those who love Him and who are called according to His purpose! (Rom 8:28) We are called to continue to announce, and BELIEVE, the “coming” of the LORD to intervene and deliver the people from bondage! We are to prepare for this and to comfort others and to wait on the LORD. Isaiah 40 is an encouragement that God is able to do GREAT THINGS even in troubled times. The message of comfort is based on the omnipotence of God (12-17) and the incomparable nature of God (18-26). Consequently, the people who know Him are instructed not to mistrust Him but to renew their faith as they wait for the promises (27-31).

Conduit, when Job was struggling, his friend Zophar came to him and understood the OMNIPOTENCE and OMNISCIENCE of our God when he said, “Can you solve the mysteries of God? Can you discover everything about the Almighty? Such knowledge is higher than the heavens—and who are you? It is deeper than the underworld—what do you know? It is broader than the earth and wider than the sea. If God comes and puts a person in prison or calls the court to order, who can stop him? For he knows those who are false, and he takes note of all their sins. An empty-headed person won’t become wise any more than a wild donkey can bear a human child. (Job 11:7-12) Trust that GOD is in control and God is on his throne! Meditate on HIS WORD, SEEK His face and WAIT on HIM!

November 12. 2019

Manasseh was twelve years old when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty-five years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Hephzibah. And he did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, according to the despicable practices of the nations whom the LORD drove out before the people of Israel. – 2 Kings 21:1-2 ESV

Warrior;

We are to be ROLE MODELS! People are using us as an example of what they want to be like, or what they would never desire to be like? We are either moving people closer to our beliefs or moving them farther away. Billy Graham told us years ago, that CHRISTIANS do more to scare people away from Jesus than anything the devil can do! Is your WALK, your WAY, your FAITH bringing people closer to GOD, or are your ACTIONS and ATTITUDES, moving people farther away? Are you leading people closer to, or farther away from the GREAT I AM? Consider the BACKSTORY for Manasseh: Most likely; the stories of the Divine deliverance of Jerusalem by God and the Divine healing received by Hezekiah were told endlessly as Manasseh grew up. Manasseh also surely found out that Hezekiah had shown the Babylonians “everything,” and that the prophet Isaiah had pronounced God’s curse on the nation and on Manasseh for Hezekiah’s foolishness. What is your WALK WITH GOD passing onto your children and those watching?

Leader, Manasseh also must have known that his father, Hezekiah, did nothing to avert the judgment “of his Father’s God” upon the nation and upon Manasseh himself. He was a mere boy growing up in a royal household and he is repeatedly reminded that “his father’s God” has pronounced a Divine curse upon him for his father’s sin.” Manasseh was under a generational curse, and surely felt doomed and rejected by both God and his father. Manasseh likely grew to regard his father’s God as unfair and cruel. Manasseh also saw his father, King Hezekiah, enjoying life throughout Manasseh’s boyhood, and there is no record Hezekiah ever intervened with God in behalf of his son. It is not hard to see how Manasseh, as a boy, grew to hate both his father and his father’s God.

Conduit, are others desiring more of the God you follow? If others were to use your relationship with God as a launching pad for their relationship with God- what would that relationship be like? As we consider what our relationship with GOD and TO GOD, looks like from the outside, looking in- what story would it tell? Would people want MORE of what you have and do with GOD, or would they despise and want NOTHING MORE TO DO with your God? God showed justice to Manasseh in warning and punishing him. He also showed mercy in responding to Manasseh’s heartfelt repentance by forgiving and restoring him. Given the nature of Manasseh’s rebellion, we are not surprised by God’s punishment, which was defeat and exile at the hands of the Assyrians. But Manasseh’s repentance and God’s forgiveness are unexpected. Manasseh’s life was changed. He was given a new start. In his distress he sought the favor of the LORD his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his ancestors. And when he prayed to him, the LORD was moved by his entreaty and listened to his plea; so he brought him back to Jerusalem and to his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD is God. (2 Chronicles 33:12-13) Read 2 Chronicles 33 to understand how our actions affect others. Manasseh went from one of the most wicked and evil kings- to a follower of Yahweh! God knows who HIS are- He has since BEFORE the beginning of time. Our Job is to represent our LORD and SAVIOR in such a way that even the ‘Manasseh”s of the world, decide they want to CHANGE their ways and their focus. and follow our God!

November 11. 2019

Then the king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, one of whom was named Shiphrah and the other Puah, “When you serve as midwife to the Hebrew women and see them on the birthstool, if it is a son, you shall kill him, but if it is a daughter, she shall live.” But the midwives feared God and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but let the male children live. So the king of Egypt called the midwives and said to them, “Why have you done this, and let the male children live?” The midwives said to Pharaoh, “Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women, for they are vigorous and give birth before the midwife comes to them.” So God dealt well with the midwives. And the people multiplied and grew very strong. And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families. – Exodus 1:15-21 ESV

Warrior;

The World tells us to DREAM BIG, but sometimes we need to DREAM SMALL- to be used by God in a BIG WAY! We can change the WORLD for GOD, BY changing our WORLD, based on our DESIRE to live a good life and our FEAR OF THE LORD! The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction. (Proverbs 1:7) The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight. For by me your days will be multiplied, and years will be added to your life. (Proverbs 9:10-11) Interesting, there are still debates on the name of the KING of EGYPT at the time, for his is NOT named, but we know the names of the 2 Egyptian midwives!

Leader, Shiphrah and Puah give us shining examples of this understanding of the power of the FEAR OF THE LORD. And consider their circumstances, they were NOBODY in the world. In this scripture verse we have the PHARAOH who rules the most powerful nation, at that time- he got to play BIG. And then there were midwives, who were NOBODY’s in the world, who were playing SMALL in their own little world, but they allowed for one of the greatest events in the HISTORY of the WORLD, the birth and survival of one of the most important MEN in the HISTORY of the WORLD- Moses! It was their FEAR of the LORD that guided them. They were most likely EGYPTIAN, not HEBREW and their FEAR OF THE LORD, directed them to be used by GOD in a BIG WAY!

Conduit, you don’t need to go to a foreign country to serve the LORD! You don’t need to GO ON A MISSION TRIP, you are in your MISSION FIELD! Your life is your MINISTRY, God will use you, if you will just have AWE and REVERENCE for the GOD who made it all; Yahweh, Jehovah, El-Elyon, El-Shaddai, Elohim, Adonai! Let me introduce you to the SIMPLE Path- SEE A NEED, MEET THAT NEED! Avail and COMMIT soldier! Here I am Lord, USE ME- I am your hands and feet and HEART! Love the LORD and Love the stranger and let everything else become everything else! Josh Wilson wrote a great song, “Play Small” and it shows you the power you have to be used by God and to change your WORLD and those whose worlds rotate around yours! “It’s a momma singing songs about the Lord. It’s a daddy spending family time that the world said he cannot afford. These simple moments change the world. It’s a pastor at a tiny little Church, forty years of loving for the broken and the hurt. These simple moments change the world. Dream small, don’t bother like you’ve gotta do it all-Just let Jesus use you where you are.” Today, FEAR THE LORD and DREAM SMALL!

November10. 2019

But even the archangel Michael, when he was disputing with the devil about the body of Moses, did not himself dare to condemn him for slander but said, “The Lord rebuke you!”- Jude 1:9 NIV

Warrior;

THE BATTLE IS THE LORDS! If you are HIS, then the BATTLE is also HIS, the VICTORY is HIS and ALL GLORY is HIS! This is an event which is found nowhere else in Scripture. Michael had to struggle or dispute with Satan about the body of Moses, but what that entailed is not described. Some have supposed that the reference in Jude is the same as the passage in Zechariah 3:1-2, “Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him. And the LORD said to Satan, ‘The LORD rebuke you, O Satan!’ I don’t believe that to be true, but it is very clear that when dealing with the most powerful CREATURE ever made, Lucifer, it is by GOD’s might, by GOD’s POWER, only by the shed blood and name of JESUS- can we STAND FIRM against the wiles of the enemy.

Leader, Jude is a GREAT illustration of how Christians are to wage this SPIRITUAL battle- every TRUE believer is engaged in this battle. We need to know how to deal with Satan and demons. The example of Michael refusing to pronounce a curse upon Satan should be a lesson to Christians in how to relate to demonic forces. Believers are not to address them in their own power, but rather to seek the Lord’s intervening power against them. Michael is an ARCH ANGEL- If as powerful a being as Michael, deferred to the Lord in dealing with Satan- WHO ARE WE to attempt to reproach, cast out, or command demons- in our own power and our own authority? The book of REVELATION is the ultimate BEGINNING with the END IN MIND; it tells us what SPIRITUAL victory consists of; And they have defeated him by the blood of the Lamb and by their testimony. And they did not love their lives so much that they were afraid to die. (Rev 12:11)

Conduit, the book of Daniel also describes a vision and interaction with an angel. This angel, named Gabriel in Daniel 8:16 and 9:21, tells Daniel that he was “resisted” by a demon called “the prince of Persia” until the archangel Michael came to his assistance. (Daniel 10:13) We need to KNOW that angels and demons fight spiritual battles over the souls of men and nations, and that the demons resist angels and TRY to prevent them from doing God’s bidding. GOD’s enemies are OUR ENEMIES-we are SOLDIERS serving GENERAL JESUS and we must KNOW HOW TO FIGHT spiritually, and what is worth fighting for! Be strong in the Lord [draw your strength from Him and be empowered through your union with Him] and in the power of His [boundless] might. Put on the full armor of God [for His precepts are like the splendid armor of a heavily-armed soldier], so that you may be able to [successfully] stand up against all the schemes and the strategies and the deceits of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this [present] darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) places. Therefore, put on the complete armor of God, so that you will be able to [successfully] resist and stand your ground in the evil day [of danger], and having done everything [that the crisis demands], to stand firm [in your place, fully prepared, immovable, victorious]. (Eph 6:10-13 AMP) Soldier on in HIS NAME! Amen!

November 9. 2019

Since we have such a hope, we are very bold, not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face so that the Israelites might not gaze at the outcome of what was being brought to an end. But their minds were hardened. For to this day, when they read the old covenant, that same veil remains unlifted, because only through Christ is it taken away. -2 Cor 3:12-4 ESV

Warrior;

Do you have HOPE? Does your HOPE- fed by the understanding that comes from seeking God’s WILL and God’s WAY through God’s WORD- make you BOLD? When Christ conquered the grave and DEATH LOST HER STING-to those that BELIEVE-cling to NO OTHER HOPE- the VEIL in the temple was torn. (Matt 27:50) It was torn both LITERALLY in the TEMPLE and it was TORN figuratively in the HEARTS of those WILLING to BELIEVE that God the FATHER raised Jesus- God the Son- from the dead!

Leader, When CHRIST is our FIRST LOVE, we can turn to face God as Moses did, God removes the veil and there we are—face-to-face! We suddenly recognize that God is a living, personal presence, not a piece of chiseled stone.We have access to God the Father, through the saving mercy and Grace of His Son, Jesus the Christ!

Conduit, when God is personally present, a living Spirit; JEHOVAH SHAMMAH- then that OLD, constricting LAW, legalism and religion DIES. In a personal relationship we’re free from the chains and the coldness of the law! There is now, Nothing between us and God- our faces shining with the brightness of HIS GLORY. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become MORE like him. Amen!

November 8. 2019

Therefore, this is what the LORD God says: “Look! I am laying a foundation stone in Zion, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation: Whoever believes firmly will not act hastily. And I will make justice the measuring line, and righteousness the plumb line; hail will sweep away your refuge of lies, and floods will overflow your hiding place. –Is 28:16-17 ISV

Warrior;

In construction, the plumb line tests whether what was erected is perpendicular to the square, that is, if it is straight up and down, if it is upright. It provides a standard against which one can measure what he has built. Metaphorically, when God draws near with the plumb line. Upright is synonymous with vertical. What is upright is righteous, and GOD will judge according to that standard. That Standard is JESUS! HE IS the genesis our PLUMB LINE! He is to BE our HIGH PLACE!

Leader, The Israelites’ moral standards had degenerated, so their religious profession was not verified by the right kind of works. They were not upright; they failed the test. Today, when we examine our lives, we must ask ourselves, “How are we doing?” If God loves us, He will use the process of SANCIFICATION to destroy “the high places”, the altars and idols of the false God’s we put up in our lives. And in the process Jesus takes His RIGHTFUL place on our throne.

Conduit, Israel thought they were still walking with Yahweh, BUT they were ALSO seeking WORLDLY ways to GET TO GOD! They worshiped Baal (the earth- Save the planet) and a host of other foreign deities. (Judges 10:6) Baal was God of the elements- not much different today- we have “Christians” saving the PLANET, worshiping the CREATION. They set up sacred pillars and idols throughout the land. (1 Kings 14:23, 2 Kings 17:10-13). Today this is similar to our vocations, our spouses, our kids…Our glory. Some of them even burned their sons in the fire to Molech. (Ezekiel 16:20-21) Today when children are NOT in OUR plan for our lives- ABORTION on demand. Through their spiritual harlotry, they ABUSED GRACE—the free, unmerited pardon of God—and rejected His law. HOW MUCH BETTER ARE WE? Let us pray for God’s deliverance! Lord, WE are NOT worthy to receive you, but only say the word and WE shall be healed! I ask this in the precious name of our risen Lord, Jesus the Christ. Amen!