Sunday, September 27, 2015

Which Jesus Will You Follow?

In today’s culture it seems we have a choice of two. The question I would like to pose is, “Which Jesus will you follow?”

Do you follow the Jesus born as God almighty in the flesh as revealed in John 1:1-14? Or, do you follow the Jesus taught in today’s modern culture, who is portrayed as a good teacher and man?

Will you follow the Jesus who hates sin and exposes sin for what it is as revealed in John 3: 18-21?  Or do you follow the Jesus who overlooks sin and will never correct you?

Will you follow the Jesus who demands that emotion, experience and opinion conform to sound teaching as revealed in Matthew 23:1-39? Or do you follow the Jesus that exalts emotion, experience and opinion above sound teaching?

Do you follow the Biblical Jesus who stated in John 14:5, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” Or do you follow the Jesus who says, “All paths lead to God”?

Do you follow the Jesus who said in Mathew 5:48 “Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” Or will you follow the Jesus who says, “as long as you are a good person, you will be ok”?

Do you follow the Jesus who says in 1 John 2:15, “Do not love the world or the things in the world; if anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in Him.” Or, do you follow the Jesus who says, “It is ok to continue living as you always have, because you are saved by grace, therefore you are fine.”

As you can see, we have a Jesus been taught today that will conform to a doctrine of no offense contrasted against a Biblical Jesus.  Therefore, the question is, “which Jesus are you following?”

Everyone has a choice to make, serving the Biblical Jesus or serving the modern Jesus as taught today in so many of our churches. The choice is yours to make. Also remember the admonition in Matthew 6:24, “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.”

So the challenge I give to everyone is, “choose you this day whom you will serve,” Joshua 24:15

Will it be the Biblical Jesus or the modern day Jesus preached in so many of today’s churches?

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Strangers Ministering To Strangers

Does not seem like two years has past since my brother Ned went to his eternal rest.
I think of him often and I remember how he suffered in the last weeks on this earth. I also remember how every day that I would visit, I  would read scripture and pray over him. And while he could no longer speak, his eyes did all the talking as he acknowledged what I read. His eyes danced with approval when I looked into his.  I knew then that he was at peace and ready.
Yet what was so amazing were the strangers that would come and minister to him. Some came in and sang that beautiful hymn, Amazing Grace. Not a dry eye in that room! But even more beautiful was Ned's eyes dancing experiencing God's beautiful grace!
 In turn my wife Pat and I had also  the opportunity  to minister to complete strangers and vice versa.
One lady in particular that I would like share with you all was a woman by the name of Mona. Her son, Steve, 33 years old was in ICU being prepped for a quadruple bypass surgery. Can you imagine the pain this single mother was experiencing to see her son going through such a procedure?  Well, as we spoke, Pat and I were able to comfort her and pray with her.
The following day, we prayed for Steve, his family and for the gifted surgeons. Our prayer was for healing and success during this surgery. Later on during the morning as I went to be with my brother, I went to the waiting room and found Mona and family there. When she saw me, she jumped up, hugged me and cried, “Steve is doing great, and the surgery was a success! Thank you for your prayers.” All I could say was, “Praise God and Amen and Amen!”
I was so humbled by this experience and all I could feel was God’s presence in that room and in my heart. The only thought that kept running through my mind was how wonderful it was to minister and to witness of an amazing God, just by talking to a complete stranger whose name I did not know until the following Sunday when we ran into each other again.
Hugging both Pat and I and again thanking us for praying for Steve. I give God all the honor and the glory for this!
Then there was a sweet elderly lady by the name of Jenny. I noticed no one ever visited her. So, one day Pat and I stopped by her room just to chat. I asked if she was ok and her response was yes. I asked if there was anything we could do for her and she asked that we pray for her.
We laid our hands upon her shoulders and prayed, what peace came over all of us at that moment. I assured that we would be back the following day. Her reply was, "I do not know if I will be here."
Sure enough, the following day Jenny was not there. No telling what happened to this dear sweet lady and of course due to privacy issues, the staff could not tell us. Yet there was a calm assurance she was fine regardless of where she was.
There was a lesson for me in all of this and that was to never pass the opportunity to minister to others even if they are complete strangers!
You never know when someone needs a loving word, a prayer or just a touch!
To God we give all honor and glory!

In Christ,

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Unclean Spirits

"Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word.  Philip went down to the city of Samaria and proclaimed to them the Christ.  And the crowds with one accord paid attention to what was being said by Philip when they heard him and saw the signs that he did.  For unclean spirits, crying out with a loud voice, came out of many who had them, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed.  So there was much joy in that city." Acts 8:4-8 (ESV)

What a remarkable, amazing and Spirit filled Bible study we had this morning! We covered all of Acts 8, but a question that was asked was based on the portion above. The question was concerning the unclean spirits and how it seems that many today feel helpless and lack the same power Philip had when he cast out unclean spirits.

My response was that in today's culture many think of those unclean spirits spoken of in the Bible had to do with demons. And in a way they are demons and have taken hold of Christians today and because we have put God in a box we seem powerless against them.

Unclean spirits are those demons that separate us from a solid relationship with God. Unclean spirits come in many different shapes and forms and a product of Satan, the father of all lies! These unclean spirits are those that infiltrate our lives and are contrary to the laws of God. Each of us have our own unclean spirits that we do battle with.

And just like Philip, we do have the power to cast them out of lives; we just do not tap into the power available to us.

First, follow the instruction given to us in Ephesians 6: 10 - 19 where it tells us to put on "The Whole Armor of God", not just part but ALL of His Armor! Secondly, I John 4:4 reminds us that, "greater is He that is in us, then he who is in the world."

Christ prior to His leaving this earth promised the gift of the Holy Spirit who would empower us, instruct us, convict us and teach us. But the sad fact is that many have failed to unleash His might in their lives. So, while many may think that this power was only for the early church fathers; this power is given to us through the gift of the Holy Spirit.

What unclean spirits do you have that robs you from experiencing great joy in the Lord? Today is the day to deal with them and start living a victorious life over sin!

God bless you and all praise honor and glory to God, my Powerhouse!


Saturday, September 5, 2015

What's In Your Closet?

I believe everyone has seen the commercial by Capital One asking the question, “What’s in Your Wallet?”

 I like what one writer said about this ad, “It’s an interesting question. The stuff in our wallet represents financial security, purchase power, and prosperity. The question “What’s in your wallet?” is a clever way of planting doubt in our minds about whether or not we have the right stuff to get all the satisfaction we are looking for in life. It prompts us to wonder if we are getting all that we think we deserve. Is there more out there that we don’t yet have? Do we have what it takes to be successful? Of course, the intent of the ad campaign is to make us think that only this particular card will make us satisfied, secure, and significant. And if we don’t feel secure about having the right things in our wallet, perhaps we need to reevaluate its contents. But those who have traveled life’s road for a while will tell you that it’s not really the stuff in your wallet that finally brings the happiness you’re looking for.”

Also, by now most people of heard about the movie that was recently released “The War Room”. Apparently it has been quite successful and while I’ve only seen the trailer, I am looking forward to seeing it.

 Franklin Graham said this about the “War Room”, “It is about the power of prayer and one woman’s place where she goes to pray. She calls it her “War Room”. He goes on to say, “We are in a spiritual battle and I hope there will be thousands and thousands of war rooms across America with people praying for their families, lost souls and this nation.”

 I agree with Rev. Graham, we all need to have our own “War Rooms”! Christ, in Matthew said, “…when thou prayest, enter into thy closet and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.” Matthew 6:6 (KJV)

 Scripture also tells us, “But if from there you seek the LORD your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart and with all your soul.” Deuteronomy 4:29 (NIV Bible)

 Read again the comments the writer said regarding the successful Capital One ad and answer the questions he asks but from a spiritual perspective.

And, here is my question, “What’s in Your Closet, do you have that private area where you can spend time alone with God, seeking Him in earnest?”

I pray that we each find our own “war room”, a closet or a private place to be alone and seek the Lord with all of our hearts! We need Him desperately in our nation! Please take time to heed His Word and “be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10

 God Bless and to Him alone belongs the glory!


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Have You Changed?

“Therefore, as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith…..”  Colossians 2:6-7a (ESV)

“Put to death therefore what is earthly, in you, sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire and covetousness which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming. In these you too once walked when you were living in them. But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander and obscene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.” Colossians 3:5-10 (ESV)

The other night having finished reading the book of Colossians the above versus stood out.

This made me think of how many people who have accepted Christ have never changed their style of living .They continue to live under a false cloud of hope thinking that everything will be fine and nothing else has to be done.

It also brought to mind two quotes from two men whose works I admire:

“Every Christian has the Spirit but not every Christian is filled with the Spirit.” William Greathouse, late General Superintendent and Theologian, Church of The Nazarene

“It is so sad that many who know Christ as Savior have never received Him as Lord” Donald Grey Barnhouse,  late Pastor of Philadelphia’s historic Tenth Presbyterian Church and author.

Both of these saints of God hit the nail on the head.

Accepting Christ is easy but after this we must walk in Him, we must grow in Him, and we must allow Him to change us in a radical way. We cannot continue to live in our old sinful ways.

“Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.” I John 3: 8 (ESV)

Therefore, my plea to you is to examine your walk with God and ask yourselves, “Have I really changed since I accepted Christ or am I continuing to live as I did before accepting Him as Lord?”

If you have never accepted Christ, then now is the time to do so!

My prayer for you this evening is that His Holy Spirit speak to you and that you will surrender all to Him!

To God be the Gory, Honor and Praise!

In Christ