God’s Rules for Living

“…what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments of the LORD and His statutes which I command today for your good?” Dt. 10:12, 13. NKJV

Yes, God set down rules (laws, commandments, statutes) to live by; and as you can see, He did it for your own good. These laws began with the Ten Commandments. Let’s look at how they help you.

1. You shall have no other gods before Me. Ex. 20:3 NKJV

God is love (1 Jn. 4:8), making this a commandment of love. All love comes from God; even if others love you, it is God loving you through them. If you make a god out of anything other than Jehovah, you are cutting off the Source of love.

If you give in to pride, you make a god out of yourself. If your focus is on sensuality, you’ve made a god of your flesh. Anytime we shift our glory from God and / or our dependency upon him onto someone or something else, we’ve made it or them a god.

If we stick with God, we remain immersed in His love.

2. You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above, or on the earth beneath, or in the water or under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them; for I the LORD your God, am a jealous God… Ex. 20:4, 5. NASB

All man-made representations of Him limit His glory and they dishonor Him.

God is benevolently jealous for your love. He knows what’s best for you, which is why He wants you to stay on His channel. God recognizes that you suffer when you don’t, and that breaks His heart. Our Father has far better things in mind for you. (Jer. 29:11)

3. You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain. Ex. 20:7 NKJV

God is love and all that is holy, and deserves reverence for all that He does for us. When you use His name in petty oaths that you don’t keep or when you couple that name with profanity, you are using God’s name in vain – demeaning His character. Subsequently, you are severing your love-connection with Him and you will have to answer for it. Keep the commandment, keep the love.

4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God. In it you shall do not work… Ex. 20:8 – 10. NKJV

God set this example for us when He created the universe, resting on the seventh day. In our case, we are living in the world for 6 days, but should dedicate the 7th to God. It’s His intent to have a day to bond with you – giving you both physical and spiritual refreshment and covering you with His love. The Sabbath was made for you. (Mk. 2:27)

5. Honor (respect, obey, care for) your father and your mother, so that your days may be prolonged in the land the LORD our God gives you. Ex. 20:12 AMP

Regardless of who your birth parents may be, God saw fit in His grand design to use their unique combination of gene pools to create the one-of-a-kind special person that you are. Even if you don’t know your birth parents, you can still love and honor whoever stepped into that role for you.

Some parents are swayed by the ways of the world and become unsafe to be around. Pray for them and love them (from a distance), for who God intended them to be.

Notice too, that this commandment is the only one of the 10 that adds a blessing to it.

6. You shall not murder. Ex. 20:13 NKJV

‘Murder’ is defined as ‘the unlawful premeditated killing of a human being,’ or ‘the premeditated shedding of innocent blood.’ God alone is the Lord of life. He chooses when it begins and ends. If one purposely snuffs out a life, they are cutting the flow of God’s love off of that victim and the part he or she was to play in God’s plan of spreading His love.

7. You shall not commit adultery. Ex. 20:14 NKJV

God created the sacrosanct institution of marriage as the only place where a man and woman become one – to nurture love between spouses and between spouses and their children.

One of Satan’s desires is to destroy marriage; and one of the best tools for doing that, is to convince one of the partners to commit adultery. Moreover, it usually distances one or more of the family members from God. Adultery is the antithesis of love.

8. You shall not steal.

Personally, I feel that when one steals, they are denying the love of God by renouncing their faith in His promise to meet their every need if they seek His kingdom first. (Mt. 6:33)

9. You shall not testify falsely [that is, lie withhold, or manipulate the truth] against your neighbor (any person).  Ex. 20:16 AMP

People only lie when they’re afraid – either of looking bad, trying to protect themselves from the judgment of others, or they are trying to make others look bad, which is a projection of their self-judgment. Whatever the reason, if you lie, you are not expressing the unconditional love for yourself that God gives you, which hurts you and everyone around you.

Love always tells the truth. (1 Cor. 13:6)

10. You shall not covet…anything that is your neighbor’s. Ex. 20:17 NKJV

Covetous behavior is rooted in jealous and envy, both of which are forms of the fear of scarcity, concomitant with lust and hatred – all of which result from a lack of faith in God’s largesse. These behaviors are anti-love. (1 Cor. 13:4)

Many people believe that ‘Old Testament’ laws are no longer applicable. Jesus denies this outright:

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfill them. For I say unto you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass away from the Law until all is accomplished.” Mt. 5:17, 18. ESV

Moreover, Jesus evolved the Law into its final state:

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” Mt. 22:37 – 40. ESV

So, everything that God has ever commanded regarding righteous behavior is distilled down to these two commandments: that when you practice love for God (by way of being obedient to Him), it will also show in your love for yourself and your neighbor – acting as a loving person would.

Does that negate the Ten Commandments? No! It is the final fulfillment of them. Jesus’ first commandment embodies the first four, i.e. if you’re loving God you would be walking in those statutes. As far as Jesus’ second commandment is concerned, if you really loved someone, would you dishonor or kill them, commit adultery against them, steal from them, lie to them, or want what is rightly theirs? Of course not.

What is Christ teaching? He is revealing that all of God’s laws are ways to keep the love flowing, to keep you from harm’s way, by helping you to be more like Him so that your gateway to eternity remains open. (Ps. 19:7, 8; Jn. 12:50.)

Lastly, you know you’re going to break some of them. You’re only human; but God knows that. That’s where your confession, repentance and faith in God’s merciful forgiveness comes in. (Dt. 4:30, 32.)

It’s always about the love…

Goodnight and God bless.

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May 24 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

Who Were the Miracles For?

God turned Moses’ walking stick into a snake and then back again into a stick. Similarly, He afflicted Moses’ hand with leprosy and turned around and healed it. He did that to convince Moses that by being equipped with the ability to call down the power (miracles) of God, he’d be able to convince Pharaoh to let His children free from their slavery in Egypt to pursue the Promised Land.

When Moses clashed with Pharaoh, God struck Egypt with ten plagues: He turned their water into blood, filled the land with frogs, lice and flies, struck their livestock with disease, covered the Egyptians with boils, brought invasions of locusts, deluges of hail, blotted the sunlight out for 3 days, and ushered in death to all the firstborn Egyptian population and livestock.

Who were these miracles for? First, they were for Pharaoh and his subjects:

“For this time I will send all my plagues on you yourself, and on your servants and your people, so that you may know that there is none like me in all the earth. For by now I could have put my hand out and struck you and your people with pestilence, and you would have been cut off from the earth. But for this purpose I have raised you up, to show my power, so that my name may be proclaimed in all the earth.” Ex. 9:14 – 16. ESV

God used His miracles to show Pharaoh His sovereignty over every aspect of the earth, its inhabitants and the immediate cosmos; and He proved that no other ‘god’ could stand against Him. Much more importantly though, the plagues were to demonstrate His same supremacy to the Hebrews and to all the future children of God.

When Pharaoh finally let God’s children go, He also parted the Red Sea to provide them with a route to escape the pursuing Egyptian army when Pharaoh’s heart had hardened once more.

Again, these miracles are meant for you, so that you may get a glimpse of His wonder and power and how He brings it all together to show that He is always there for you and will let nothing get between you and His love:

“Do not be afraid! Take your stand [be firm and confident and undismayed] and see the salvation of the LORD which He will accomplish for you today…The Lord will fight for you while you [only need to] keep silent and remain calm.” Ex. 14:13, 14. AMP

There is no mountain that God would not move or Red Sea that He would not part, that blocks your path to Him and His designs for you. He delivers you from your circumstances to bring you closer to Him:

You have led in your steadfast love the people whom you have redeemed; you have guided them by your strength to your holy abode. Ex. 15:13 ESV

Miracles upon miracles. God provided for the Hebrews as they trekked through the desert towards the Promised Land: He made brackish water potable to slake their thirst; He fed them with manna and quail; called water out of rocks, and at the end of their journey, He stopped the flow of the Jordan River so that they could enter Canaan.

God miraculously prepared a fish to swallow His prophet Jonah, so that he could be transported to the city of Nineveh to save a pagan nation with His words. He miraculously uses the pagan King Cyrus of Persia to save His wayward children from Babylon, repatriating them to Israel.

Finally, God brings us the greatest vehicle for His miracles – Jesus Christ, who freed us from spiritual darkness, healed the sick and the demon possessed and raised the dead. Jesus performed these at the behest of His Father to show us who God is, what He wants from you, and He painted a picture of what God’s eternal miracle looks like that awaits you.

Our Father implores us to ask for His miracles:

“Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me.” Ps. 50:15 NKJV

God always responds; and when He does, He delivers way beyond what you expect. You can count on God because His word is unbreakable:

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. Eph. 3:20, 21. NKJV

God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it? Num. 23:19 ESV

Goodnight and God bless.

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May 18 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

God Is with You in the Darkness and Makes Light of It

I don’t mean that He’s making fun of your troubles. In fact, God is with you in the midst of all your dark phases in life. Moreover, even if you can’t see it at the time, God is using your hard times to shape and strengthen you, as He is preparing to shine His light upon those phases to bring you out of them.

One of the greatest examples of His dark-to-light liberations lies in the account of the life of Joseph. He was the second youngest of Jacob’s sons, who would later become the fathers of the twelve tribes of Israel. Joseph was also his Daddy’s favorite son, and his elder brothers hated him for that.

Adding coals to that fire, at the age of seventeen, God sent Joseph a vision, whereby He revealed that Joseph would rule over his brothers in the future. Joseph shared this revelation with his brothers. This infuriated them so much that they sold Joseph off to slave traders – later telling their father that some wild animal killed him.

This was the beginning of a very long dark season in the life of Joseph. He was sold into slavery into the house of Potiphar, an officer of the Pharaoh. Yet even then, God was with him:

The LORD was with Joseph, and he became a successful man… Gn. 39:2 ESV

…the LORD blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake… Gn. 39:5 NKJV

Every task that Potiphar put upon Joseph brought God’s blessing upon his house. Therefore, he put Joseph in charge over his entire household. God shed light into Joseph’s darkness.

Unfortunately, Potiphar’s wife got the hots for Joseph, but he rejected her advances. In retaliation, she accused him of trying to seduce her. Subsequently, Joseph was thrown into prison. Yet the chief jailor had the same observations as Potiphar – seeing that Joseph brought success to whatever he was instructed to do. God was spilling the light for Joseph again:

But the LORD was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love and gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. Gn. 39:21 ESV

During his incarceration, Joseph encounters two prisoners from the house of Pharaoh, both locked up for offending the Pharaoh. During this encounter, Joseph used his God-given gift to interpret dreams, to reveal the meanings of those that were troubling these prisoners. He tells one that he would be killed by the Pharaoh for his offenses, and informs the other would be released and reinstated to his position. Joseph asks the latter to tell the Pharaoh of his innocence. The freed prisoner forgets for two years, until the Pharaoh had troubling dreams of his own, whereupon he tells Pharaoh about Joseph’s talent.

Joseph was 30 years old.

Joseph accurately interprets Pharaoh’s dreams, which allows for the saving of Egypt from an impending famine. In response, Pharaoh, also seeing the hand of God upon Joseph, makes him second-in-command over all of Egypt. More of God’s light filling Joseph’s darkness…

God has a purpose for everything. The famine hit the surrounding countries, the land of Canaan being one of them. Jacob’s brothers were sent from there to Egypt to buy grain, whereupon they encounter Joseph, this now powerful agent of Pharaoh, and they are frightened to their core. Surprisingly to them, he reveals God’s purposes in him:

“And now do not be distressed or angry with yourselves because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life.” Gn. 45:5 ESV

“And God sent me before you to prepare a posterity in the earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it was not you who sent me here, but God…” Gn. 45:7, 8. NKJV

Furthermore, because of the favor of God, Pharaoh told Joseph to bring his family of seventy Hebrews to live in the abundance of Egypt; and they became the seeds for the future nation of Israel:

“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good to bring about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. So, do not fear; I will provide for you and your little ones.” Gn. 50:20, 21. ESV

Joseph’s long season of trials and tribulations were reversed – used by God to achieve a far grander purpose for good, both showering His light upon him and making the way for the future of His children.

The first thirty years of Joseph’s life were harrowing, but because of his continuing faith in God despite his adversities, God showered him with love.

Can you relate to Joseph? Have you gone through (or going through) a stage in your life that doesn’t make sense? Are you having trouble seeing the hand of God in your life? Would you like your life to be different? Tough questions.

God never said that life would be easy. What He said was that we’d have both good seasons and hard ones:

“Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” Job 2:10 NKJV

In the day of prosperity be joyful, and in the day of adversity, consider: God has made one as well as the other… Eccl. 7:14 ESV

Yet, if you stick with God, no matter how dark your trials, God has a better endgame:

For I know the thoughts I think towards you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Jer. 29:11 NKJV

God is truthful, faithful and He wants to lovingly lead you into a wondrous future. Why then does He allow the dark phases in our lives?

One reason is that it brings you closer to Him. I believe that if you suffer in life, God wants you to change – back into whom God created you to be before the world stomped all over you.

He wants you to understand the seriousness of your choices and the consequences that they bring. It’s up to you to choose life or death:

“See, I have set before you today life and prosperity, and death and adversity…” Dt. 30:15 NASB

Your choices good or bad, have consequences. God never gives up on you. He lets you experience the repercussions of your bad ones to build character, faith and strength so that you can turn away from making bad choices in the future:

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let the steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. James 1:2 – 4. ESV

When consequences of bad decisions lead you to make good choices, you are learning the ways of God:

It was good that I was afflicted, that I may learn your statutes. Ps. 119.71 NASB

…He disciplines us for our good, so that we my share His holiness. Heb. 12:10 NASB

When you turn to God, everything changes:

“Yield now and be at peace with Him; thereby good will come to you.” Job 22:21 NASB

Other dark moments in life may be no fault of our own, and the ‘why’ of them may seem hard to see; e.g. experiencing a death of an addict in the family who chose not to give up their addiction. Or perhaps someone was born into the family with a physical or mental challenge.

We want to rail against God for what we perceive as immeasurable injustices. But we can’t see the big picture that God sees:

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are you ways My ways,” says the LORD. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” Is. 55:8, 9. NKJV

I believe these unfortunate individuals are gifts given to us to have a chance to grab hold of a deeper understanding and compassion for our brothers and sisters and ourselves – to teach us that no one is unlovable. It also helps us to touch our own pain and learn to love ourselves by tapping into the love of God.

Furthermore, I firmly believe that these ‘challenged, addicted’ people will be made whole in the heavens.

God wants you to have a life of complete love and contentedness. Sometimes that life will have a dark season. That’s the time God is asking you to look inside and ask, ‘What can I learn from this?’ It’s usually about a change that needs to be made that steers you towards your greater good. When you look to God in your dark seasons, they will come to an end:

For the needy will not always be forgotten, nor the hope of the afflicted perish forever. Ps. 9:18 NASB

God will see you through every peak and valley for the whole of your entire life…

Even to your old age, I will be the same. And even to your graying years I will bear you! I have done it, and I will carry you; and I will bear you and I will deliver you. Is. 46:4 NASB

Goodnight and God bless.

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May 11 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

God Calls You to Further His Kingdom

I don’t know how He’s going to do that for you, or what part God will want you to play; but call you He will…

Way back in antiquity, the earthly reflection of God’s kingdom was in tatters:

The Lord saw that the wickedness (depravity) of man was great on the earth, and that every imagination or intent of the thoughts of his heart were only evil continually. Gn. 6:5 AMP

God’s initial thought was to wipe the earth clean of His wayward creations, and have a do-over. Yet God loved them so much that He decided to scan the planet to see if He could find anyone who might help Him further His kingdom. He still does this today:

God looks down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there are any who understand, who seek God. Ps. 53:2 NKJV

Fortuitously for us, He found one:

Noah was a righteous man [one who was just and had right standing with God], blameless in his [evil] generation; Noah walked (lived) [in habitual fellowship] with God. Gn. 6:9 AMP

This would infer that it helps us to be prepared for and active in our walk with God to be available for advancing His kingdom. Thank God, that Noah was available, giving God a vehicle (through Noah’s obedience) to give mankind a second chance to populate that same kingdom.

God called on Noah to build an ark to house him, his wife, his three sons and their wives, and a male and female of every living species of animal. Why? Because God said He’s going to flood the earth – an event that wouldn’t happen for another 120 years!

The inhabitants of the earth at that time had never witnessed such a phenomenon. Can you imagine the ridicule Noah and his family must have had thrust upon them by anyone who had met them during this construction period? In explaining their actions, they would have responded by effectively preaching the word of God – even if the hearers rejected it. How did Noah respond?

By faith [with confidence in God and His word] Noah, being warned by God about events not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his family. By this [act of obedience] he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness which comes by faith. Heb. 11:7 AMP

So, we also see that having faith in God, is necessary for us to be candidates for furthering His kingdom. The fact that you and I are here, is testimony of Noah’s right preparation and actions in advancing God’s purpose.

Ten generations after Noah, God called upon Abraham to enlarge His kingdom:

Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. And I will make you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing…and in you all of the families will be blessed.” Gn. 12:1 – 3. ESV

This is an enormous test of faith. God is telling Abraham to take his wife, his nephew and a few of his servants, and leave all that he’s ever known – to make a 1500-mile trek to Canaan, a land that he’s never seen, to be part of God’s seminal nation, to propagate it. Mind you, he and his wife were in their 70’s, but Abraham takes God at His word, i.e. exercising more of that kingdom-advancing faith.

Abraham, who is considered the biblical paragon of faith, did waiver in his faith a few times, but he always got back on track. This should give us encouragement, knowing that God will strengthen our faith (if we ask Him to) so that we can transcend our shortcomings.

There was also the matter of Abraham’s promised child. He waited 25 years for that promise to be fulfilled. Like Abraham, we too need to keep faith in that God is using our efforts to promote His plan, knowing that we have no idea when we will see the fruits of our labor.

Now, let’s consider Moses. He had escaped Egypt to flee the wrath of Pharaoh, settling into a new life as a sheepherder in what is now modern-day Saudi Arabia.  As you know, one day Moses is out tending his sheep when God manifests Himself to him as a burning bush; and He charges him with the task of freeing His children from the Pharaoh’s oppression and leading them to the Promised Land.

Moses immediately lets fear lead him to resist God’s imperative. He wails about what He should do if the people don’t believe that he is representing God. God in turn displays miracles for Moses to convince him of His power, as a demonstration of what He will do through Moses, to convince His children.

Unconvinced, Moses pleads with God to send someone else because he is not a good public speaker. God tells Moses that He will teach him how to be. Moses still doubts, and God grants him a slight concession by sending Moses’ older brother Aaron to speak for Him.

What is God doing? He is equipping Moses with the skills and power to accomplish His purpose. God takes this frightened sheepherder and transforms him into a leader, who, through God, frees His children, performs a plethora of miracles while leading them to the Promised Land, and Holy Spirit-inspires Moses to write the first five books of the Bible.

God worked all of this through someone who was deathly afraid of answering God’s call. There are several other examples of this in the Bible, but I believe we have a good picture by now. The question is, ‘Will you answer God when He calls?’

We’ve seen that God can use anyone, at any age, with whatever fears they may have, to accomplish His kingdom purposes. One reason that is possible is that God has already equipped us to do so:

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. Eph. 2:10 NKJV

We are all part of God’s plan. He makes sure that we are up to whatever task He assigns to us. Still, to best serve God, we must prepare our awareness, so that we can hear His summons. We do that by becoming intimately related with Him through His word:

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Tim. 3:16, 17. NKJV

God would never ask you to walk a path (your part in His plan) that you could not traverse to attain His end goal. He will supply the faith that you need through His Son (Heb. 12:2); and through Christ, He will give you every skill and power to make it happen. (Phil. 4:13).

God will call each and every one of us. It may be at a time or in such a way as we never would have guessed; it may be a task that seems overwhelming, or what appears to be simple yet vital for the completion of the kingdom of God. And if we keep our spiritual eyes and ears open, we can be ready when He calls…

“Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Esther. 4:14 NKJV

Goodnight and God bless.

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May 05 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

We All Slip Sometimes

There was only one sinless man that ever walked this earth – Jesus Christ:

For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. 2 Cor. 5:21 NKJV

The rest of us? Well…

Adam and Eve began the practice of slipping (sinning) when they used their free will to indulge in pride, acting out their desire to be like God.

Cain majorly slipped when he killed his brother in a fit of rage that was rooted in envy.

King David and King Solomon surrendered to the lust of the eyes and of the flesh.

The apostle Paul, who wrote most of the New Testament (previously a murderer of the church), said this about himself:

…Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief. 1 Tim. 1:15 NKJV

What chance then, do we have?

We only have one, but it’s a mighty BIG one – it is found in the immeasurable grace of God.

God wants you to live your perfect highest and best life, full of peace, love, joy and happiness. But you’re not living that way when you slip. Slipping is when you allow yourself to get lost in your base desires, those that have been proscribed by your Creator. He hates to see that because it does you harm; and what hurts you, hurts Him.

You were created innately good:

Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. Gn. 1:31 NKJV

Unfortunately, everyone that was or will be conceived on this planet has been tainted by by the error (sin) of Adam and Eve:

…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God… Rm. 3:23 NKJV

But, it’s the very next two verses that brings hope:

…being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed…

Rm. 3:24, 25. NKJV

When we accept Christ, we are transformed, our spirits becoming one with Him as we return to the original creative intent of God, being restored to life:

“I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” Jn. 10:10 NKJV

We receive His resurrection power, freed from the death of sin, motivated to take godly action. Our eyes are opened by the faith that Jesus brings to us by the Spirit. Thus filled, we begin the stepwise transformation towards our Savior’s image, which invites God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit to come and dwell in our spirits.

We can lean on Christ to strengthen our will to walk in His footsteps and to live for Him. And this process is not one of bondage, but of liberty – to live free as God intended. We get to make the free will choice to live in His love by moving in His will.

That very same love from God is found in His statutes. He did not lay down laws to be dictatorial, but instead set them before us to protect us from the shortcomings of our flesh. Our obedience to them propagates our transformation.

Yes, this walk is one that is opposite of the way the world moves; and that’s a good thing. The world revolves around lies set forth to justify sin, so that the agenda of the adversary may be manifested. Unfortunately, that manifestation will be achieved in most of the world.

That’s why the telling of the salvation message is so imperative. God sends His children to the lost to show them the Christ they have within, Who, is freely available to all. We are emissaries for the love of God, brought forth not only to enrich those consciously receiving that love, but also to decimate the evil in those who feel that they are not.

Yet, even the followers of Jesus are not spared temptation. The devil plays no favorites, but I’m sure he is especially delighted if he can influence believers to indulge in apostasy. Thus, we must be vigilant with regards to our thoughts and actions. We must keep them centered on love, on Jesus.

When we slip, and we all slip sometimes, it is crucial that we get down on our knees before our Father immediately, to confess and repent. We can be motivated to do this by His mercy (found in grace):

But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lm. 3:21 – 24. ESV

God wants to forgive you. He knows that you have slipped into your flesh, and that sin is satanically sourced. Therefore, it’s deadly, and if left to its own devices, death-binding.

Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. I Jn. 3:8 ESV

That’s not what God wants for you:

“Cast away from you all the transgressions which you have committed, and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit. For why should you die…? For I have no pleasure in the death of one who dies, “says the Lord GOD. “Therefore, turn and live!” Ezek. 18:31, 32. NKV

Life is not always easy. We are points of light, set living in an ocean of darkness. We must stay alert to keep from drowning. But if we start to succumb, God always has His hand outstretched:

‘Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, i will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’ Is. 41:10 NKJV

He strengthens us in our faith, in His word and through prayer He bolsters us in our self-discipline to help us regain our toehold on our spiritual path. We respond with gratitude and love, and the acknowledgement of our need for His grace.

God puts His salvation in place (Christ) and you are freed once more…

“I, even I, and He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; and I will not remember your sins.” Is. 43:25 NKJV

For the death that He died, He died to sin one for all… Rm. 6:10 NASB

Goodnight and God bless.

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April 27 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

Created by Love, Created in Love, Created to Love

Are you feeling unloved? Let’s tackle that myth right now.

He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 1 Jn. 4:8 NKJV

He (Jesus) is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature… Heb. 1:3 ESV

So, what do we know? God is love itself. Jesus is exactly like His Father; therefore, He too is love personified.

…I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ… Eph. 3:8, 9. NKJV

God created through Christ; thus, they are co-begetters. What did They create? Everything. That includes us:

“Let us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness…” Gn. 1:26 NKJV

So God created man in His own image, in the image and likeness of God He created him; male and female He created them. Gn. 1:27 AMP

What kind of image is that? Jesus tells us:

“God is Spirit…” Jn. 4:24

Jesus, being an exact image of His Father was a Spirit-being as well before His incarnation. Thus, we are created to conform to God in our spirits. Taking that further, if God and Christ are love, then we in our spirits are created as islands of love, by Love.

Okay. But how do we know that we were created in love?

We love Him because He first loved us. 1 Jn. 4:19 NKJV

See how great a love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called children of God… 1 Jn. 3:1 NASB

We were loved in advance, long before we took our first breaths.

Moreover, the love of God can be seen all around us. He formed a planet we can live on, that sustains us in relative safety. He created us initially to be immortal and eternally joyful in Him. He created opposite genders so that we could be complete. He covered us with abundance and wisdom, and gifted us with children. We were made complete in His love.

Even when we broke that completeness, He continued to love us by sending His Son to heal that brokenness:

“For God so loved the wold that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”  Jn. 3:16 NKJV

By this we know [and have come to understand the depth and essence of His] precious love: that He [willingly] laid down His life for us [because He loved us]. 1 Jn. 3:16 AMP

The Father and the Son love you in orders of magnitude that are beyond human measure.

And, God will let nothing get in the way of His love for you:

…neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Jesus Christ our Lord. Rm. 8:38, 39. ESV

Finally, we were created to love:

“ ‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF [that is, unselfishly seek the best or higher good for others.]’ “. Mt. 22:37 – 39. AMP

How do we love God? By keeping His commandments:

“He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me.” Jn. 14:21 NKJV

Time and time again, we are called to love:

“…the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God.” Jn. 16:27 NKJV

“…love one another as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” Jn. 13:34 NKJV

A friend loves at all times… Pr. 17:17 NKJV

Let all you do be done with love. 1 Cor. 16:14 NKJV

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 must also forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. Col. 3:12 – 14. ESV

That’s a whole lot of love, thank God. You are a bundle of love, steeping in divine love; and when you express that love the way in which God expects you to profess it, your love will first resonate with God’s love, fill you with the same, and you will become an irresistible target for the love of others.

Still feeling unloved? You just need to do some expressing…

Goodnight and God bless.

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April 20 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

Easter Is Not About Colored Eggs

It’s about the coming of Jesus, Who came to save us from ourselves and reunite us with His Father, through Him, for eternity. He laid His life down so that we could once again be part of God’s temple.

As a Spirit-being, Christ was with God, who, created everything in this universe through Him. (Jn. 1:1 – 4.) Jesus shares the powers of God (Heb. 1:3). He holds the universe together and is the only ‘instrument’ for the redemption of God’s children. Jesus also shares His Father’s exact likeness. (Col. 1:15 – 20.)

We first hear about Christ’s first coming to earth in the time of the fall of Adam and Eve. (Gn. 3:15). Thus, it is evident that God was, at the beginning, planning for our redemption because He saw our future transgressions.

Before and after Jesus was born, it was made evident to many that He was sent for the salvation of all peoples. (Mt. 1:21; Lk. 1:68 – 70, 78, 79; 2:10, 11 & 30 – 32.

Then God and the Holy Spirit revealed it to John the Baptist. (Jn. 1:29)

When Jesus began His ministry, He Himself declared the purpose of His coming:

“No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is the Son of Man, who is in heaven. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” Jn. 3:13 – 17. NKJV

We see then that Jesus was sent to grant us eternal life, but that He must first be ‘lifted up’ (crucified) to have that happen. Prior to this revelation (that He made to Nicodemus), He alluded to His resurrection that would occur three days after His death. (Jn. 2:19)

Jesus went to great lengths to make His salvation promise take on reality for as many people as He could reach, and then He multiplied His efforts through the apostles (Mt. 28:19, 20.) and the church. (Mt. 16:18)

He taught about how deadly Satan and his purposes were. (Jn. 10:10) He showed us by example how to defeat the devil with the word of God. (Mt. 4:1 – 10.) That’s important because Satan’s prime objective is to rob you of Christ’s salvation. We want to cling to Jesus because our final victory will be facilitated through Him:

The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. 1 Jn. 3:8 NASB

He approached the spiritually ignorant, and reasoned with them so that they could see the light – actively pursuing their salvation. (Jn. 4:6 – 26.) And Jesus showed them that He was the centerpiece of that deliverance:

“This is the work of God, that you believe in Him who He sent.” Jn. 6:29 NKJV

That sums up your salvation in a nutshell.

Jesus worked a multitude of miracles to convince the unbelievers of His ability to wield the power of God. He declared the veracity of all Scripture. (Mt. 5:17, 18.) And He stood toe to toe against the self-serving religion zealots of His time, that were teaching man-made falsehoods, which stood in the way of the people’s salvation.

He taught us how to live a godly life (Mt. chapters 5 – 7.) and about the importance of love. (Mt. 22:39; Jn. 13:34, 35.)

Amid all this, Jesus repeatedly drove home the fact that He was the only way to salvation:

“For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world…And this is the will of Him who sent Me, the everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” Jn. 6:33 & 40. NKJV

“…if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.” Jn. 8:24 NKJV

“…I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers…I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved…” Jn. 10:7 – 9. NKJV

Finally, Jesus taught about how corrupt the world would become and how it would persecute His followers; yet He encouraged us by saying that if we endured that oppression and held on to Him, salvation was assured. (Mt. 24:9 – 13.)

Despite all Jesus’ efforts, the world paid Him back by crucifying Him.

And yet, all that Christ said was true. On the third day, His tomb was empty…

Praise God! Happy Easter.

Goodnight and God Bless.

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April 14 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

Beware of False Teachers and Counterfeit Christs – part 2

In part one, we looked at an author who was attempting to secularize Christ. Now, let’s look at (yet another Huffington Post offering) an article by one Keith Augustus Burton, who is the ‘Director of the Center for Adventist-Muslim Relations at Oakwood University.’

Mr. Burton’s bio tells us that he has received accolades for his ‘successful bridge building initiatives between Christian, Muslim and Jewish communities.’ In addition, it states that he teaches at the ‘School of Religion.’ Sounds impressive; yet the title of his article we’ll examine gives me pause: The Bible Has No Place In Modern American Society: Sobering Lessons from Donald Trump and Kim Burrell. His bio does not specifically state his particular theological beliefs, but some book titles he’s authored suggests a Christian perspective. We’ll see…

His article begins with his personal assessments of the Bible and of the so-called damage that it wreaks: ‘…many of the bigoted and outdated teachings have no place in our enlightened society.’ ‘…its content is seriously out of place with modern American values.’ and ‘…its teachings are a most meddlesome inconvenience that if embraced will place them (the followers) in a permanent state of cognitive dissonance.’

We can see then where Mr. Burton’s mindset is, by his own admissions. As we move into the body of his article, he presents his talking points:

1. The Bible is a relic of a Superstitious Past

His ‘proof’(?) consists of his assertion that because presidents have done bad things after placing their hands on a Bible during their inauguration, that the word of God has no power. In truth, his discursive prose consists only of a political rant at best. Nothing here that connects the Bible with a superstitious past.

2. The Bible is a Convenient Political Prop

This discussion is nothing more than a hate-filled pontification against our present president, the vice president, the ‘gullible masses who are still beguiled by the myth of a “Christian” America’, and ‘the cold-hearted “evangelicals” ‘ that voted for the present administration and their policies. Not anything of value about the Bible itself so far.

I’m beginning to feel that perhaps Mr. Burton has a grudge and that the mention of the Bible in his title is but an attempt to try to catch readers so that he can advance his agenda by political bashing.

3. The Bible is an Obstacle to American Freedom

Wow! his opening salvo demonstrates his true discriminations: ‘Whereas the conservatives’ repulsion to the Bible is guarded by a conniving cloak of acceptance, progressives are more honest. As far as they are concerned, the socially liberating sections of so-called “scripture” are not enough to redeem its bigoted and outdated parts.’ Who’s the bigot here? Again, no discussion of the Bible, just hurling hate against people whom he perceives thwart his beliefs.

Mr. Burton, your article purports to be about the Bible first. Your political candidate lost. Give it a rest. You’ll get a chance to change this in four years.

He doesn’t let up, finally getting around to attacking the Bible: ‘It is a dangerous book…that must be delegitimized…’

He then sounds off against marriage defined by the union of a man and a woman.  Why? Because in his opinion, the 21st century mores and the Supreme Court defines it differently. (Thus, they are the greater authority?) Well, we see that Mr. Burton’s temple is constructed around himself.

4. The Bible informs “Personal” Belief and Behavior

In this, his last ‘talking point,’ Mr. Burton never really pinpoints what he means by this subtitle. What he expounds upon is that people should love and accept other people who have beliefs that are ‘contrary’ to the Bible, even if thy promote sex between men and boys. But according to him, most don’t because they are ‘ideological bigots.’

Pardon me, but I don’t see anywhere where the author makes his case for ostracizing the Bible from ‘modern society.’

What I would have you notice is not what Mr. Burton is saying specifically, but what he is lecturing about in general: he is a perfect example of those who denigrate the word of God because what God says does not suit them and their agenda. I daresay as well, that perhaps some of their bellicosity is rooted in a guilt from an inner conviction of their self-righteousness regarding their willful and knowing rebellion against God:

I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts… Jer. 31:33 NKJV

But the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, so that you may obey it. Dt. 30:14 AMP

The trouble is that many people don’t follow their hearts; thus, they can’t understand the message:

But that natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, nor can he know them for they are spiritually discerned. 1 Cor. 2:14 NKJV

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 1 Cor. 1:18 NKJV

And that is the main point, isn’t it? We must endure and cling to our faith. We are called to evangelize everyone, even those who are presently following another drummer. Regardless of their bluster*, we must try to present the word, opening ourselves up to the Holy Spirit to do the talking:

*(The words of his mouth begin with foolishness, and the end of his talk is raving madness. Eccl. 10:13 NKJV)

I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word [as an official messenger]; be ready when the time is right and even when it is not [keep your sense of urgency, whether the opportunity seems favorable or unfavorable, whether convenient or inconvenient, whether welcome or unwelcome]; correct [those who err in doctrine or behavior], warn [those who sin], exhort and encourage [those who are growing toward spiritual maturity], with inexhaustible patience and [faithful] teaching. For the time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine and accurate instruction [that challenges them with God’s truth]; but wanting to have their ears tickled [with something pleasing], they will accumulate for themselves [many] teachers [one after another, chosen] to satisfy their own desires and to support the errors they hold, and will turn their ears away from the truth and will wander off into myths and man-made fictions [and will accept the unacceptable]. 2 Tim. 4:1- 4. AMP

It is true that Jesus calls us to love our ‘enemy.’ And who are our enemies but God’s people who have gone astray due to unfavorable circumstances. Many parts of the world and the people in it are victims of poverty, cruelty and ignorance, who are desperately seeking relief from their misery. Many times, that search leads to self-defeating and destructive behavior. As followers of Christ, we must love them but not their aberrant practices. We must do our best to show them the way to salvation so that they can abandon the false teachers and counterfeit Christs:

“Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you (unbelievers) and obey you rather than God, you must judge [for yourselves; for we on our part, cannot stop telling [people] about what we have seen and heard.” Acts 4:19, 20. AMP

But when that enemy rejects us with spite, hatred and disregard, we are to turn the other cheek and place our efforts to spread the kingdom elsewhere:

“Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pears before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.” Mt. 7:6 NKJV

Remember that we are entering the closing times. The devil knows his time is short, and he will drive his minions mercilessly to attempt to bring God’s kingdom down:

“…you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another…And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures till the end shall be saved.” Mt. 24:9, 10 & 12. NKJV

How do we endure? We do it by clinging to the Bible, the word of God, having faith in it and staying in line with it. That can only be done if we stand behind its purity:

You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord our God which I command you. Dt. 4:2 NKJV

We can put our full faith in His undiluted word:

As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the Lord is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him. 1 Sam. 22:31 NKJV

You can stand upon it because it does not change:

The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever. Is. 40:8 NKJV

Things don’t bode well for those who don’t follow God’s word:

“Cursed is the man who does not obey the words of this covenant…” Jer. 11:3 NKJV

“But if you will not hear these words, I swear by Myself,” says the LORD, “that this house shall become a desolation.” Jer. 22:5 NKJV

Just what are those bad parts of the scriptures that Mr. Burton attests to?

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness… 2 Tim. 3:16 NKJV

Hmmm. Seems like there are no bad parts. Indeed, Christ seemed to think that all the parts were important:

“It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” Mt. 4:4 NKJ

“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.” Mt. 24:35 NKJV

So, detractors (e.g. Mr. Burton) will sometimes say that Christ was okay, but the rest of the Bible is superstition. I invite them to meditate upon Jesus’ words:

“Do not think that I came to do away with or undo the Law [of Moses] or the [writings of the] Prophets; I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For I assure you and most solemnly say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke [of the pen] will pass from the Law until all things [which it foreshadows] are accomplished.” Mt. 5:17, 18. AMP

Goodnight and God bless.

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April 08 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

Beware of False Teachers and Counterfeit Christs

The apostle Peter warns us extensively about the coming of ‘false teachers,’ first, by qualifying why he and Christ’s other apostles could present the truth about the gospel:

For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were witnesses of his majesty. For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,” we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain.

And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. 2 Pt. 1:16 – 21. ESV

The apostles were with Jesus, they heard God coronate Him, and they recognized that all Scripture is a product of Holy Spirit-inspired writers.

Next, Peter tells us of the destruction that false teachers will bring:

…there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. 2 Pt. 2:1 NKJV

Many will follow in their shameful ways, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned. And in their greed they will exploit you with false arguments and twisted doctrine. Their sentence [of condemnation which God has decreed] from a long time ago is not idle [but is still in force], and their destruction and deepening misery is not asleep [but is on its way]. 2 Pt. 2:2, 3. AMP

But these [false teachers], like unreasoning animals, [mere] creatures of instinct, born to be captured and destroyed, reviling things they do not understand, will also perish in their own corruption [in their destroying, they will be destroyed]… 2 Pt. 2:12. AMP

For uttering arrogant words of vanity [pompous words disguised to sound scholarly or profound, but meaning nothing and containing no spiritual truth], they beguile and lure using lustful desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error. They promise them liberty, when they themselves are the slaves of depravity… 2 Pt. 2:18, 19. AMP

Jesus also warns us of the same:

…for false Christs and false prophets will arise, and they will provide you signs and wonders in order to deceive, if [such a thing were] possible, even the elect [those God has chosen for Himself]. But be on your guard; I have told you everything in advance. Mk. 13:22, 23. AMP

If you are a follower of Christ, these folks are not a lot you want to throw yourselves in with. In their ignorance and / or rebellion, they lay down seeds of corruption (lies) amongst the blossoms of your salvation. And yet, as one who walks in salvation, you can see that these false teachers need the understanding of salvation more than anyone.

We know that there are people out there right now, distorting the word of God.

Sweeping political affiliations aside, (your choice, and nobody else’s business), I find that the Huffington Post is a sweeping platform for many of these false teachers who preach legalized infanticide, denigrate God’s biological designs and express great disdain for all things biblical.

One such article I came across was entitled What it means to be a “secular” Jesus follower, designed to promote the author’s (Tom Krattenmaker) new book: Confessions of a Secular Jesus Follower, Finding Answers In Jesus For Those Who Don’t Believe.

He begins by stating that he is not a religious person, that he is inspired by Jesus, but not a Christian. Mr. Krattenmaker defines a ‘secular Jesus follower’ as one who “is pursuing the aspects of Jesus that do not involve his religious utterances and behaviors or claims of his divine status.”

His ‘Jesus application’ as it were, is expressed thusly, “…Jesus can be a source of inspiration, insight, and ethical input that is powerfully applicable and transformative today, wherever we are on the theological spectrum. Whether the issue is our anxiety, our racism, our violence, our sexual exploitation, or our self-centeredness, I contend that as we examine and implement the insights of Jesus, we deepen our lives and begin to make the world a fairer, more loving, more peaceful, and more compassionate place.”

You cannot argue with this portion of his opinion. It’s absolutely correct. The danger is (especially for those who are ignorant about who Jesus is), the twisted message he may be unintentionally(?) delivering to others or himself. He is cherry-picking the scriptures to suit his own purpose and justify his deviation from them.

Indeed, he admits that secular folks do not seek ‘church acceptance’ and leave by the wayside the gospel parts that include ‘the supernatural – the miracles, the resurrection, salvation, teachings about God – or as I prefer to do, we can “translate” them into words and concepts that make sense to a secular mind.’

In essence then, the author is only paying attention to the Scriptures that he likes; and if he doesn’t, he ‘translates’ (modifies, corrupts, twists, distorts) them until he does. The problem with that is it makes him a ‘false teacher,’ luring other people (and himself) away from what is a life or death situation.

Let’s first address the issue of cherry-picking scripture:

Every word of God is pure…Do not add to His words, lest He rebuke you… Pr. 30:5, 6. NKJV

“You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God.” Mt. 22:29 NKJV

[The Scriptures Opened] Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses, and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.” Lk. 24:44 NKJV

For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” Rm. 10:11 NKJV

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Tim. 3:16, 17. NKJV

I testify and warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book [its predictions, consolations, and admonitions]: if anyone adds [anything] to them, God will add to him the plagues (afflictions, calamities) which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from or distorts the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away [from that one] his share from the tree of life and from the holy city (New Jerusalem), which are written in this book. Rv. 22:18, 19. AMP

Thus, you cannot even apply Scripture correctly unless you have a God-connection. All Scriptures point to Christ and to be able to follow Him, you must understand who He really is. You must apply them all to be able to live as God would have you live – in a godly fashion that fulfills and transcends Mr. Krattenmaker’s ‘Jesus application.’ Finally, having the audacity to re-write the word of God brings about a final demise of that would-be author.

Moreover, let’s look at the issue of siding with the authentic Christ as well – from His mouth:

…everyone who acknowledges Me before men and confesses Me [out of a state of oneness with Me], I will also acknowledge him before My Father Who is in heaven and confess [that I am abiding in] him. But whoever denies and disowns Me before Men, I will also deny and disown him before My Father Who is in heaven. Mt. 10:32, 33. AMP

“For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son, so that all will honor the Son as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.” Jn. 5:22, 23. NASB

“He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad.” Mt. 12:30 NKJV

“…you will die [unforgiven and condemned] in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am the One [I claim to be], you will die in your sins.” Jn. 8:24 AMP

“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” Jn. 14:6 NKJV

We don’t get to say who Christ is; we profess who Jesus says that He is. If we don’t believe in that, don’t follow His primary purpose, (which is to help gather others into the kingdom), don’t honor Jesus by obeying Him and believing in His divine stature, we will be left behind to perish with this version of the earth.

God bless Mr. Krattenmaker, but we cannot afford to follow his misinformed quest or his counterfeit christ.

Our lives depend upon the truth. Stick with the Source.

Goodnight and God bless.

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April 02 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

God Promises Change

Paradoxically, God does not change; and that’s a good thing because we can always count on Him to do what He says He will do. On the other hand, change is good for us because many of us tend to get lost in familiarity.

We get lost because we are afraid of change, blind to how we’ve been living life on automatic, and refusing to take ownership of the consequences. Change is the only thing that is guaranteed in this life; so, it makes sense to make peace with it. It is a gift from God because it always presents us with new possibilities to help put the past behind us and step into a future of hope.

But we must get out of our own way to have that happen – to let go of who we were being with our habits, plans and opinions, and put God in charge, letting Him reconcile us with our true selves. And like anything else we do with God, it’s going to take faith:

…without faith it is impossible to [walk with God and] please Him, for whoever comes [near] to God must [necessarily] believe that God exists and that He rewards those who [earnestly and diligently] seek Him. Heb. 11:6 AMP

To position ourselves for God’s reconciliation, we must recognize that we suffer, and then ask Him to reveal the nature and root of it so that we can pray more effective for its cessation. If we hide from our suffering (via addictions and distractions), it will persist; and it suffocates our love and joy.

Suffering is usually rooted in lack of knowledge, wrath and prejudice – all of which shows up in the way that one thinks, speaks and acts.

So, we ask God to show us the nature of our anguish so that we can drop all our fears and rest in His grace and mercy. We can dispense with our actions that have been working against us, e.g. surrounding ourselves with toxic consumption of news, worldly indoctrination, hurtful people and substances.

When we understand that we are not the only person that suffers, it will fill us with compassion and understanding for others, and we can help stop this cycle that hurts us all. We will be less angry, more loving, peaceful, living in present-time consciousness and come to a place where we are able to mend our relationships – becoming both healed and a healing facilitator for others.

We ask God to remove the hostility and bitterness that we have harbored, without judging ourselves for having done so. After all, that’s part of the healing that God confers upon us so that we can be free to be our original self:

Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget none of His benefits; who pardons all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases; who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion… Ps. 103:2 – 4. NASB

There is no happiness until we can rest in God. Thus, we need to spend a lot of time in His word, making ourselves available to His love. We can approach Him through Christ, who, while He was on this earth, took on a soul like ours, so that He could completely identify with both our sufferings and the behavior born out of them, without Himself ever taking part in those destructive human doings.

Jesus brings tranquility to our soul by bringing change, one that puts us back on the path of life that God intended for each of us – walking in His kingdom…

Goodnight and God bless.

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March 22 2017 | experiencing god's love | No Comments »

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