“Show God’s Love”

 5 May the Lord direct your lives as you show God’s love and Christ’s endurance. — 2 Thess. 3:5 GW

2 Thess; 3:1-5 NLT

None of us have reached perfection and we won’t as long as we inhabit these tents of flesh. Therefore, we need the prayers of our Christian brothers and sisters just as they need us to pray for them. We need Spiritual and physical strength to carry on God’s Kingdom work here on earth. “The harvest is great, but the workers are few” so we need to pray and ask God to send laborers into the fields.(Matt 9:37,38 paraphrased). We need to ask God to guard our thoughts because the mind is the spiritual battlefield where our personal battles are won or lost. The Lord is faithful. He has promised that we will not be tempted above our ability to resist and that He will always provide a way out for us. We don’t always find the way out because the flesh gets great pleasure from wallowing in its old sinful ways. We need to pray for each other that we will continue to do the things that God has commanded us to do. When we practice doing the right things, we receive more understanding and patience which allows us to better show sinners the greatness of God’s love toward us and them.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 10-16-2019

“Living In a War Zone”

2 Then he sent them out to tell everyone about the Kingdom of God and to heal the sick. 3 “Take nothing for your journey,” he instructed them. “Don’t take a walking stick, a traveler’s bag, food, money, or even a change of clothes. — Luke 9:2, 3 NLT

Luke 9:1-10 NLT

If Jesus told us to go on a mission taking no money, food or clothes, what would our reaction be?  Do we really trust God to completely supply our every need?  Do we trust Him to protect us from every harm that comes our way?  If not, we must ask ourselves, why not?  Has He ever failed on a promise?  Is our salvation not secure?  If He was able to do this for the disciples, is He not able to do this for us?  Every disciple came back safe and sound.  God had provided their every need.  We think “Oh, but society is different now, we wouldn’t be safe and people now are not as generous as they were back then.”  Again, we are guilty of wrong thinking and allowing ourselves to be deceived by satan.   The right question is “Isn’t God still God, can He not do today what He did then”?   And the right answer is “Yes He is and yes, He can.”  If the people won’t feed us, then God can use another method, just as He did when the ravens brought meat to Elijah.  Either we believe that God can and will or we don’t believe that He can and will.  In a war zone, there is no neutral ground and we are living in a war zone.  There is a war going on around us right now.  We may not see the spiritual warriors fighting the battles, but we see the results of those battles around us every day.   We see people who are deceived and refuse to believe the truth.  They have eyes to see but they don’t see.  They have ears to hear but they don’t hear.

 Ephesians 6:10-18 NLT2

Corinthians 10:3-6 NLT

“The G​o​spel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

Post 01-19-2019

Our Part Is To Pray, Praise, and Stand!

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23 But David said, “No, my brothers! Don’t be selfish with what the Lord has given us. He has kept us safe and helped us defeat the band of raiders that attacked us. 24 Who will listen when you talk like this? We share and share alike—those who go to battle and those who guard the equipment.” — 1 Samuel 30:23, 24 NLT

All of us are spiritual warriors and we live in a spiritual war zone.  Some of us go to other lands to carry on the battle and this is important.  But just as important are those who stay behind and guard the “stuff”.  In our case, the “stuff” is carrying on services in local churches, teaching Sunday School classes and witnessing to those around us.  We are fighting the same enemy whether we go or stay.  What sense would it make to go to battle for others and lose our own families and neighbors?  One job is just as important as the other.  How could we carry on any campaign against the enemy, if we didn’t have workers who supported the war with their tithes?  God has given each of us talents and He has a plan and a purpose for each of us to use those talents in service to Him.

Our mission, Mr./Mrs/Miss Christian, should we decide to accept it, is to determine what those talents are and use them for Kingdom purposes. There are no spectators on the battlefield.  Each of us has a job to do and God has blessed each of us with the talent to do it.  The war has been won, we know the final outcome.  Jesus wins!  But there are battles to be fought and we need to strap on the full armor of God, step up and take our position in the fight.  Just as God told Jehoshaphat, the battle is not yours, it is mine, but you and your people still have to take up your position on the battlefield
 
 

So it is today, God will win the battle for us, but we still have a job to do.  We must take up our position on the battlefield and stand while He fights the battle.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

Post 12-11-2018

Mind Control

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12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. 13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account. — Hebrews 4:12,13 NIV

Since God knows our every thought we need to be very careful of the thought patterns that we allow to develop. Of course, thoughts drift into our mind and that is beyond our control to a point.  But we do have control over whether or not we dwell on those thoughts.  In Corinthians, we are instructed to “take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ”.  We can also take some control of our thought patterns by making better decisions about the things we read, the things we see, the conversations that we have and the people we associate with daily.  We must be careful that our pride doesn’t lead us into believing that we are influencing others more than they are influencing us. The things and the people that we spend the most time with are the ones that influence us the most. Pride says “I would never” but we all have at some time or other done or said those things that we are not proud of later.  Those things that we did and the words that we spoke are results of thought patterns that we have developed over the years.  We need to ask the Holy Spirit to help us purify our hearts and minds. We can help by studying God’s Word and making it a bigger part of our daily thought patterns.

 11  I have hidden your word in my heart
    that I might not sin against you. — Psalm 119:11
 10 Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me. — Psalm 51:10 NIV

23 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus— Phil. 4:7 NIV23 Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. — Proverbs 4:23 NIV

 

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

Post 05-07-2018

“Stay Alert”

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8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. — 1 Peter 5:8 NIV

Paul is telling us to be spiritually alert, sober minded and armed for battle. The demonic forces are well-trained in deception and guerrilla tactics. They are very good at creating illusions that deceive “even the elect”.

 

24 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you ahead of time. — Matt. 24:24, 25 NIV

So, what does it mean to be spiritually alert?   It means that we have to be prayed up, full of the Holy Spirit and well disciplined in our study of the Holy Scriptures. Jesus defended Himself against the devil by quoting scriptures to Him.  If Jesus needed the scriptures to ward off satan then we surely need them even more. We need to be aware of where we are weak. The demons know our weaknesses and they attack us in those areas. Don’t walk too near the edge of the cliff. If certain things cause you to be excessive or respond wrongly. stay a long way away from those things. Your pride will tell you that you can handle the situation but your Spirit knows better. Let the Spirit man rise up and mortify the flesh.

12 Therefore, brothers and sisters, we have an obligation—but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it. 13 For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live. 14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. — Romans 8:12-14 NIV

The battlefield is the mind, if we allow the Holy Spirit to control our thoughts, then we can win the battles.

4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. — 2 Cor. 10:4, 5 NIV

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

Post 04-23-2018

Standing Is Our Part

even-smaller-bug-light123 But David said, “No, my brothers! Don’t be selfish with what the Lord has given us. He has kept us safe and helped us defeat the band of raiders that attacked us. 24 Who will listen when you talk like this? We share and share alike—those who go to battle and those who guard the equipment.” — 1 Samuel 30:23, 24 NLT

All of us are spiritual warriors and we live in a spiritual warzone.  Some of us go to other lands to carry on the battle and this is important.  But just as important are those who stay behind and guard the “stuff”.  In our case, the “stuff” is carrying on services in local churches, teaching Sunday School classes and witnessing to those around us.  We are fighting the same enemy whether we go or stay.  What sense would it make to go to battle for others and lose our own families and neighbors?  One job is just as important as the other.  How could we carry on any campaign against the enemy, if we didn’t have workers who supported the war with their tithes?  God has given each of us talents and He has a plan and a purpose for each of us to use those talents in service to Him. 
Our mission, Mr./Mrs/Miss Christian, should we decide to accept it, is to determine what those talents are and use them for Kingdom purposes. There are no spectators on the battlefield.  Each of us has a job to do and God has blessed each of us with the talent to do it.  The war has been won, we know the final outcome.  Jesus wins!  But there are battles to be fought and we need to strap on the full armor of God, step up and take our position in the fight.  Just as God told Jehosphat, the battle is not yours, it is mine, but you and your people still have to take up your position on the battlefield.  2 Chronicles 20:15-17 
So it is today, God will win the battle for us, but we still have a job to do.  We must take up our position on the battlefield and stand while He fights the battle.
Post 04-16-2016 

Dressed for Battle

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10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God,so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.—Ephesians 6:10-13 NIV

​Since​ we don’t actually see the angels and the demons surrounding us, it is hard for us to stay aware of the continuous battle going on around us everyday.  But there are several examples of this in the Scriptures.  The example in Daniel 10 involves at least two demonic princes and two angelic princes.

20 So he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? Soon I will return to fight against the prince of Persia, and when I go, the prince of Greece will come; 21 but first I will tell you what is written in the Book of Truth. (No one supports me against them except Michael, your prince.–Daniel 10:20, 21 NIV

​Just​ as Daniel was not physically involved in the battle, neither are we.  Our battlefield is our mind.  That is why our armor is not physical armor, it is invisible things that protect our thought patterns from being overwhelmed by evil. These weapons are truth, righteousness, readiness that comes from the gospel of peace, faith, salvation and the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. For us to be fully dressed in the armor God has provided for us takes time. It is not a piece of clothing that you can just throw in the corner and then grab when bad times come. It takes hours and hours of prayer, Bible study and meditation to get fully dressed.  satan knows where the holes in our armor are.  We must pray daily for the Holy Spirit to show us the holes and then spend whatever time it takes in prayer and Scripture study to mend those holes. While we reside in this old piece of decaying flesh, we will never be able to fill all the holes. That is why God has His angels encamped around us.

7 The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them.—Psalm 34:7 NIV

Post 06-21-2015