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

Read, Repeat, Remember, Repeat

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25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it. – James 1:25 NLT

Never say that someone or something made you mad. If you get angry, it is because you didn’t control your emotions. There certainly can be a righteous anger, but, we have to be honest because we know that most of our anger is from our pride. We also know that in our times of anger, we think and say things that we should not have said and those words are often very vile and evil. We must plant God’s Word in our hearts because it is out of the heart that the mouth speaks. Don’t just plant the Word, but water it and feed it everyday. That means that we have to spend time meditating on God’s Word so that we remember it and act accordingly. If we study, meditate and act according to that word, God can and will bless us.

Psalm 1:1-3 NLT


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

Post 05-26-2017

“Be Truly Glad”

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5 Sing to the Lord, for he has done wonderful things.    Make known his praise around the world. — Isaiah 12:5 NLT
 

Each of us needs to pause each day and meditate on what an amazing God we serve. He has every right to be angry with us and punish us accordingly. Instead, He put all of our sins on His only Son and allowed Him to be crucified on a cross for our salvation.  Jesus was all man and all God, so God Himself hung on that cross and He has become our salvation. He is our strength and our song. We can trust Him to complete the work He started in each of us when we accepted Jesus as our Savior, No matter the situation, we can turn to Him and draw water from the springs of salvation and they will fill us with joy.  Every moment of every day, we should “rejoice and be glad.”

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous
Post 04-07-2017

Stay Focused!

even-smaller-bug-light138 Jesus was sleeping at the back of the boat with his head on a cushion. The disciples woke him up, shouting, “Teacher, don’t you care that we’re going to drown?  — Mark 4:38 NLT

I wonder how many sermons we have heard preached on this passage of scripture from Mark.

Some emphasize how frightened the disciples are, others question why Jesus would sleep during the storm or how He could sleep during the storm.  We have heard that when we are in the storm, God will calm the storm or He will calm us.  But I wonder if we are missing the real point of this story. Look at what Jesus said to His disciples:

“Why are you  afraid? Do you still have no  faith?”


I wonder if what Jesus really wanted to know was if the disciples had enough faith in Him to take care of them in the storm, no matter how high the waves.  In our lives, do we trust God to take care of us when the wind is blowing hard against our sails and the waves threaten to sink our boat?  Does it matter how strong the waves are when we are anchored in the SOLID ROCK? If God chooses not to calm our present storm, He will deliver us in the storm or through the storm. We just need to keep your eyes and thoughts focused on Jesus, not on the storm.  Peter was able to walk on the water as long as He was focused on Jesus but he begin to sink when he focused on the wind and the strong waves. 
 
Post 10-13-2016

Witnessing Is A Christian Imperative

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31 “But Abraham said, ‘If they won’t listen to Moses and the prophets, they won’t be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’”  — Luke 16:31 NLT
 
The rich man who had refused to comfort Lazarus was sent to Hades (the place of the dead).  From there, he was allowed to look into Paradise where he saw Lazarus sitting with Abraham.  Realizing how wrong he had been in not showing mercy to Lazarus when they both lived on earth, he began to beg for mercy. “Just allow Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and bring it to me”.  But Abraham reminded the rich man that he had had ample opportunity to help others with his riches while he lived on the earth.  The rich man realizes that the reason he has ended up in this place of torment is because he refused to accept Jesus and his teachings.  Since there is now no hope for him, he remembers his brothers and asks Abraham to send Lazarus back from the dead to witness to them.. Abraham tells the rich man that it wouldn’t make any difference, if his brothers won’t believe Moses and the prophets, they won’t believe just because someone returned from the dead.  We find this statement proved to be true over and over since so many refused to believe when Jesus was raised from the dead.  Even now, with all the proof we have of His Resurrection, there are those who still refuse to believe.  Since we don’t know who those believe are, we still must witness to everyone that God puts in our lives.  When we don’t share the Gospel with those around us who desparately need it, we are as guilty of withholding our riches from them as the rich man was in withholding his riches from Lazarus.  Our part is to share the Gospel with everyone, God takes care of the results.
Post 04- 14-2016

The Eye of the Storm

even-smaller-bug-light13 You will keep in perfect peace  those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.4 Trust in the Lord forever,  for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal. — Isaiah 26:3, 4 NIV

The eye of a hurricane is the calmest part of the storm, there is usually no wind and the skies are clear.  It is usually true that the stronger the storm the better defined the eye of the hurrciance will be.  The eye is surrounded by an eyewall of thunderstorms that contain the most dangerous weather.  When a hurricane is at sea, the eye is still calm except at sea level where waves may reach a height of 130 feet.  If we can compare the violence of the world around us to a hurricane, we can see that there is a place of peace and calmness in the middle of all that chaos. But we can’t just sit on the surface and wait, we have to prepare for the storm by keeping our eyes on Jesus and not on the world.  By trusting completely in Him, we can rise above the waves and live in peace in the midst of the storm. When the storm starts to dissipate, the eyewall will start to break down and we will experience some winds but they will not be strong enough to harm us.  There will be some rain but only enough to water us and make us grow, not enough to wash us away. God never allows more than we can bear.  If we choose to focus on the world and its carnality, we will find ourselves in the eyewall of the storm. But if we repent and pray Peter’s short prayer. “Lord, save me”, He will str​e​tch out His hand and pull us to safety.  We can’t stop the hate and violence in the world, but God has provided a place of peace and safety for His children. The choice is ours.  We can choose to stay focused on Jesus and live in the peace that He gives us or stay where we are and live in the chaos.

10 Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, ​ yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,”  says the Lord, who has compassion on you.  ​ — Isaiah 54:10 NIV​

Post 01-19-2016

“Rejoice and Be Glad”

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“I will give thanks to You, O Lord;
For although You were angry with me,
Your anger is turned away,
And You comfort me.
2 “Behold, God is my salvation,
I will trust and not be afraid;
For the Lord God is my strength and song,
And He has become my salvation.”
3 Therefore you will joyously draw water
From the springs of salvation.–Isaiah 12:1-3 NASB
 
Each of us needs to pause each day​ and meditate on what an amazing God we serve. He has every right to be angry with us and punish us accordingly. Instead, He put all of our sins on His only Son and allowed Him to be crucified on a cross for our salvation.  Jesus was all man and all God, so God Himself hung on that cross and He has become our salvation. He is our strength and our song. We can trust Him to complete the work He started in each of us when we accepted Jesus as our Savior, No matter the situation, we can turn to Him and draw water from the springs of salvation and they will fill us with joy.  Every moment of every day, we should “rejoice and be glad.” 

8 and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9 obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.
—1 Peter 1:8,9 NASB

Post 06-22-2015

Will Manna and Water Be Enough?

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3 They all ate the same spiritual food 4 and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.5 Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them; their bodies were scattered in the wilderness.—1 Cor. 10:3-5 NIV

​As the children of Israel traveled through the desert, they began to complain about the food, so God fed them manna from heaven. They complained about the lack of water, so God had Moses strike a rock and bring forth water for them to drink. The manna represented the body of Christ, just as the wafer we take at Communion represents the body of Christ.  The rock is a representation of Jesus Christ and the water would be a foreshadowing of His blood pouring from His side when the soldier stuck his spear into His side.  So, the Exodus foreshadowed our journey that we must make.  First, they believed Moses would deliver them out of their bondage and they were baptized into Moses. Secondly, they had all the foreshadowing of salvation as represented by the baptism, the manna, and the rock. Thirdly, they had a hope of reaching the Promised Land. If we have accepted Jesus believing that He will deliver us from evil, follow His example of baptism and walk according to the Spirit, we have a hope of reaching the Promised Land, our eternal home in heaven. We, too, must make a journey and some of it will seem like a dry and thirsty land to us. Will we whine and complain or will we really, really trust Jesus and shout for joy in the midst of the storms?  Not because of the storm, but in spite of the storm. Will we be Joshuas and Calebs or Dathans and Korahs?
Post 06-07-2015

Having No Spot or Wrinkle

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1 For I do not want you to be ignorant of the fact, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud and that they all passed through the sea. 2 They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea..—1 Cor. 10:1-​2​ NIV

​The children of Israel​ were shaded from the sun in the daytime by a cloud that also led them in the direction God wanted them to go, so they “were all under the cloud”. They all passed through the sea which is a form of baptism, Because Moses was their leader and led them out of bondage in Egypt, just as Christ has freed us from the bondage of sin, they were “baptized” into” Moses, just as we are baptized into Christ. The waters did not roll back of their own accord but were held back by the power of the Holy Spirit.  Once the Israelites had passed over to the other side, the waters returned to their normal level and destroyed the enemy.  The deliverance from their enemies is a shadow of our deliverance from the forces of evil. It was not a baptism of an individual because that person had believed on Jesus, it was a baptism of a nation, a washing away of the old lifestyle, to prepare that nation for total dependence on God through the leadership of Moses. Just as we are “washed by the water of the Word” to prepare us to live a life of Holiness completely dependent on God through Jesus Christ as we are led by the Holy Spirit.

26 so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.—Eph. 5:26,27 NASB

Post 06-06-2015

Born Again!

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

12 What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. 13 This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. 14 The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.—1 Cor. 2:12-14 NIV
​We are​ born with the spirit of the world in us which causes us to sin. When we accept Jesus as our Savior, we receive God the Holy Spirit. He comes to abide in us and to lead us into all truth. To understand the truth takes wisdom from heaven. This can only be taught by the Holy Spirit who teaches us spiritual realities with Spiritual words. If we have not received the Holy Spirit, we will not accept the truths that He wants to teach us. The person who has not received the Spirit of God cannot discern or understand Spiritual things. That person considers Spiritual things to be foolishness because of his or her lack of understanding. Those who have truly accepted Jesus as their Savior are Spirit-bred, Spirit-fed and Spirit-led!
6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You​ must be born again.’—John 3:6 NIV
Post 05-01-2015