“Signs, Signs, Everywhere Signs”

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19 “All right,” Jesus replied. “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” – John 2:19 NLT
 

The Jewish leaders questioned the authority of Jesus and asked Him for a sign that God had given Him the authority to cleanse the temple. Jesus agreed to their demand, but with an answer that completely baffled them. No one could build this temple in three days, it would take years. They eventually saw the sign that Jesus was referring to, but the leaders probably didn’t know it because of their unbelief. Human nature hasn’t changed, people are still looking for a sign. How often do we miss what God is doing because of our “little faith”? Jesus knows whether we really believe or not when we ask Him for something. We know the “temple” that Jesus was speaking about was rebuilt (resurrected) in 3 days. Is the Cross and the Resurrection enough for us or do we still need a sign?
37 Don’t believe me unless I carry out my Father’s work. 38 But if I do his work, believe in the evidence of the miraculous works I have done, even if you don’t believe me. Then you will know and understand that the Father is in me, and I am in the Father.”–John 10:37,38 (NLT)
When Jesus completed the work His Father had sent Him to do, He said “It is finished”.

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

Post 08-10-2017

Be Busy – Bringing in the Sheaves

even-smaller-bug-light1 The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. ​ — 2 Peter 3:9

God spoke everything into existence. Everything is held in place by the power of His word. Because everyone was “doing what was right in their own minds”, God destroyed the earth with the same water that had once covered the earth. Then He placed a rainbow in the sky as a sign to us that He would never again destroy the earth with water. Instead, the day is coming when He will destroy the present heavens and the earth with fire. We have once again arrived at that point where “everyone is doing what is right in their own mind” and not obeying the Lord. The Holy Spirit will not always strive with man and the time will come when God’s promise of destruction by fire will come. When? No one but the Father knows, but He is not bound by time, as we understand it. Our finite minds need eternity broken into small pieces so we can grasp it. That is not necessary for God. The One who is coming will come. While He is being patient with us, we need to be laboring in the fields that are white with harvest. It is not His will that any should perish and everyone will have more than ample opportunity to accept Him as Savior and Lord. But, we know that no matter how long He waits, there will be those who choose to go to hell rather than accept His free gift of salvation. Fill your lamps with oil, trim them to keep them burning and buy extra oil. Be alert! Be ready! The bridegroom is coming soon!


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

Post 06-25-2017

A Raging Wildfire!

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And among all the parts of the body, the tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself.  ​  – James 3:6 ​NLT

James 3:2-6 NLT

We all know the old saying: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me.” Or as I learned it in my childhood “words don’t bother me”.
Either way, it is wrong. With our tongues, we can speak words of life or words of death. The death might be a relationship or a lost opportunity. We can speak words of peace or words that stir up anger. We should always consider our thoughts carefully because those thoughts turn into words that can buildup, tear down or completely destroy. We can think of our thoughts as a text message we are about to send, once we hit the send button, there is no way to recall the message regardless of how much we regret the words. Our words can truly fan a small spark into a raging wildfire causing damages that may not be repaired. Regardless of how we feel about any  situation, it is our duty to speak words of peace and restoration.

 
9 God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.

​ – Matt. 5:9 NLT​


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

Post 06-02-2017

Faith Produces Good Works

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16 and you say, “Good-bye and have a good day; stay warm and eat well”—but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do? – James 2:16 NLT

We know that we are saved “by grace through faith, not by works, lest any man should boast”. We also know that everything we receive while we are here on earth is a free gift from God. So, what is the purpose of “good works” and why are they important? Well, there are at least two good reasons and probably more it you want to break them down. The first is this; now, that we are Christians, Jesus is our example and He went about doing good works.
38 And you know that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. Then Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.–Acts 10:38 (NLT)


The second reason is this; doing good works here on earth is how we store our rewards or treasures in heaven.

20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.–Matt 6:20,21 (NLT)


If we do good works for these two reasons, it will keep our hearts and minds focused on Jesus and our final reward of living an eternity with Him. If we focus on that, it will make the burdens lighter and we can walk the path with joy and thanksgiving in our hearts and a song of praise on our lips!


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

Post 05-31-2017

Worse Than Worthless Words

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26 If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless. –James 1:26 NLT

I wish I had never said that! Sound familiar? Unfortunately, our spoken words are like our texts and our emails, once we have hit the send button, we can’t get them back. Words can pierce us to depths of our heart and the wounds are slow to heal, if they heal at all. In the carpenter trade (which Jesus was very familiar with), they have a saying” “measure twice, cut once”. Of course, the implication is that if you take the time to measure correctly, you want have to cut the lumber again. That would be a good rule for us to follow in our conversations. Think twice about what we are about to say before we say it and maybe no one will get cut to the bone. We should choose words that build up and create rather than destroy. We need to show our faithfulness to Jesus by caring for those around us that need our help. Not just physically and materially, but also spiritually. We need to walk carefully so that we are not corrupted.

Galatians 6:1-4 NLT


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

Post 05-27-2017

Don’t Worry Yourself to Death

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10 And don’t grumble as some of them did, and then were destroyed by the angel of death. — 1 Cor. 10:10 NLT
As Christians, we don’t live lifestyles of continual sinning but since none of us are perfect, we still sin.  We commit sins of omission when we fail to move or speak when the Holy Spirit tells us to go or to speak to someone about Jesus.  We commit sins of omission when we don’t help those around us when we have the resources available to help them.  We also commit sins of commission when we fear, worry or grumble.  If God had written more than ten commandments, the next three might well have been “thou shalt not fear”, “thou shalt not worry” and “thou shalt not grumble”.   While they are not official commandments, when we read verses that contain words such as “have I not told you”or “God said” or “Jesus said” that should make them official enough for us to obey them.  The grumbling that the Israelites did that caused God to destroy them was their continual complaining about God’s provisions for them and the leaders He had chosen for them.  Well, yeah, we say, but worrying, fearing and grumbling are just natural things.  While that is true, therein lies the issue that God has with us when we do it.  He has given us access to the resurrection power that enables us to live above the natural.  When we refuse to access that power and live the abundant life, are we not refusing the gift God gave us at the cross?
Post 08-28-2016 

Pray, Prepare, Present

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12 Afterward Mordecai returned to the palace gate, but Haman hurried home dejected and completely humiliated.  — Esther 6:12 NLT
We are familiar with the story of Esther and how God exalted her to the position of queen in a most unlikely situation.  Besides Esther, there are three other people God had positioned strategically for this particular time. God needed a man with the the authority to make things happen so He had positioned Xerxes as king.  He needed a villain, He chose Haman for this role.  Haman was the perfect villain for this time, he hated Mordecai and all of the Jews. God needed a hero, someone who would refuse to bow to the villain and with the backbone to stand up for God’s people.  He chose Mordecai who had a little known history with the king.  In the past, he had warned the king about a plot to kill the king and for this he had never been rewarded (at least not  in earthly ways).  Mordecai was also a man of compassion.  We know this because he had taken his cousin, Hadassah, also known as Esther and raised her as his own daughter after his uncle died.  God had prepared and positioned each of these people to carry out His plan to free His people and destroy the enemy.  God is preparing each of us to do the same thing today.  Are we ready and willing to do our part when all the people involved come together?   If not, how do we get ready?
15 Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.  — 2 Timothy 2:15 NLT
Post 06-18-2016