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Archive for September, 2014

With all the methods of communicating today radio, TV, books and the internet it’s easy to get a message to the public. When it comes to the Bible how can one discern whether the messenger is from God or not. As Believers we have the Holy Spirit dwelling within each of us to confirm the truth. Anytime someone teachers or preaches the truth about Jesus Christ. That is that He is God the Son virgin born in the flesh, that He died was buried and rose again completely paying the coast for our redemption and that one day He will return for those who have put their faith in Him. That He alone is the only mediator between God and man He is the only way to God, there is no other way, that Spirit is from God. All others are not from God, the foundation is simply “What think ye of Christ” (Matthew 22:42). Wrong on the truths of Christ, they are the Spirit of Antichrist, no matter what name they go by. If Jesus was not who He said He was, and that He was the only way of redemption then He would be a liar! And He was/is not! If anyone is wrong on any point about Jesus Christ that one is not a messenger of God, not a Believer. I believe an example of a very popular preacher and author of a false teacher is Joel Osteen . I listened to him on an interview, when asked if he believed that Jesus was the only way of Salvation, his answer was, “well I don’t like to talk about the negatives” and would not answer. Jesus said if you deny me before men I will deny you deny you before my father in heaven. There are many false teachers (antichrist) in the world today. We can overcome them and not be led astray as we keep nothing between us and our Saviour, no unconfessed sin. The holy Spirit living within us is greater that Satan in the world we must rely on the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome the temptation and false teachings that are put in our way. False teachings always sounds good at the point of need we are facing. But daily time with the Bible and God will give us the power to see and overcome the temptation to stray. Stay close to Christ through His Word. 1 John 4:2-4 “2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.

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Trust but verify was Presidents Reagan strategy in dealing with some foreign governments. This was good advice then and would be good advice for today with our government officials. It’s also good advice for Christians today as it was when the apostle wrote” believe not every spirit but try the spirits”. Just because some teaching sounds good we each must test it with the whole Bible and ask the Holy Spirit to show us the truth. We can be assured He will if we are sincere in our wanting to really know. There are many false spirits/teachers out today teaching a false gospel, false doctrine and false lifestyles for those claiming to be Christian. The true gospel includes the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. He alone is the only way to God, the one and only mediator between God and man. Mans only hope rest alone in the shed blood of Jesus at Calvary. Any who deny or reject it are lost and will spend eternity in hell, the lake of fire. Some of the doctrines and lifestyles taught and accepted are against what the Bible presents. The wonderful thing about the Bible is that anyone, yes anyone willing to read, study and pray will be taught the truth by the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God will reveal to those whether what they are hearing or reading from others is the truth. God calls and uses many teachers and preachers to help us along our way as we desire to learn His Word. We can avoid error as we verify with the Scriptures what we hear while relying upon the Holy Spirit as our final teacher. The apostle Paul (Acts 17:11) praised the believers at Bera because “..they received the Word with all readiness of mind and searched the Scriptures daily whether those things were so.” They took time to verify that even what Paul and Silas were teaching was in accordance with the Scriptures. Oh, that is what id desperately needed for Christians today, verify. Satan uses counterfeits , and the closer to the truth they are the better to be accepted. Satan’s goal is to keep people from receiving Christ and to lead Believers away into false teaching and away from Christ. Beware, Trust, Verify. The Bible is our sure foundation. The hymn, the Bible Stands
1. The Bible stands like a rock undaunted
’Mid the raging storms of time;
Its pages burn with the truth eternal,
And they glow with a light sublime.
2. The Bible stands like a mountain tow’ring
Far above the works of men;
Its truth by none ever was refuted,
And destroy it they never can.
3. The Bible stands and it will forever,
When the world has passed away;
By inspiration it has been given,
All its precepts I will obey.
4. The Bible stands every test we give it,
For its Author is divine;
By grace alone I expect to live it,
And to prove and to make it mine.

o Refrain:
The Bible stands though the hills may tumble,
It will firmly stand when the earth shall crumble;
I will plant my feet on its firm foundation,
For the Bible stands.

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Whatsoever we ask we receive. Many today take promises like this out of context. We see this by many of those on TV they ignore the context and or requirements related to the verse, they quote. In context of what has been written leading up to this promise. We are told how we should love others, no hatred within the heart. We must be willing to even laydown our lives for others as Christ did for us. In our country at this time will are not called upon to do that we have freedom. But we are taught in the Bible that we should live our lives for others, to share even at our own cost with a brother in need, not find a reason not to help. We must have a clear conscience before God and in God’s sight, nothing between. We are to live as Christians not just trying to keep the commands found in the Bible, its going far beyond to be seeking what can I do that will be pleasing to Him. This should be our goal and attitude in every situation good or bad. Our lives before God should be going beyond what is commanded and or required but going the extra mile because of our love for Him. The desire that He will not give us what we ask for it its for our good and His glory and not give us what we ask for if it’s not for our good. James 4:3 “Ye ask and receive not because ye ask amiss that ye may consume it upon your lust.” Many prayers are only for personal gain remember god knows our heart and motives. Seek His will with our whole heart then we can rest on his promises. When we know God’s will we can pray for that with confidence. The apostle reminds of His two commands; “to believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ” and “to love one another”. Then we know that we are walking with Jesus and abiding in Him. 1 John 3:22-24 22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight. 23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment. 24 And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.” The hymn writer sums it up in the hymn “Nothing Between”
1. Nothing between my soul and my Savior,
Naught of this world’s delusive dream;
I have renounced all sinful pleasure;
Jesus is mine, there’s nothing between.
2. Nothing between, like worldly pleasure;
Habits of life, though harmless they seem,
Must not my heart from Him ever sever;
He is my all, there’s nothing between.
3. Nothing between, like pride or station;
Self or friends shall not intervene;
Though it may cost me much tribulation,
I am resolved, there’s nothing between.
4. Nothing between, e’en many hard trials,
Though the whole world against me convene;
Watching with prayer and much self-denial,
I’ll triumph at last, there’s nothing between.
o Refrain:
Nothing between my soul and my Savior,
So that His blessed face may be seen;
Nothing preventing the least of His favor;
Keep the way clear! Let nothing between.

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How can one know of their relationship with God, the assurance that brings us peace. We look to His Word, His promises then look at our own life. The apostle says hereby we know, that by the evidence of our life along with His Word. Are we ready to show compassion to those in need, do we demonstrate God’s love toward others. These two things will give us the confidence, assurance within. Even for those who think they never do it all right, they are down on themselves. But take note even when we condemn ourselves in many areas. God knows the real truth, He knows all. Some will never be satisfied with what they do, yes we are to strive to do better but not condemn ourselves. If we can trust the promises and be at peace with what and who we are it will give us confidence toward God. Sometimes we just need to be quiet and listen closely to the Holy Spirit within us. Romans 8:16 “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit that we are the children of God”. Iv’e heard many parents agonize and question over what they did or did not that caused their child to turn away from God. No parents were/are perfect most did what the believed was right at the time. We must remember two things every person has a freewill to receive or reject Christ. One could say that the only perfect parent was God in the Garden, but He had two children and both went astray. Even When everything around them was perfect and all their needs were met freely. There was just one command and one temptation which they which they disobeyed and yielded to. We need not condemn ourselves, just repent of what we know is/was wrong , confess it to God and then accept God’s forgiveness. Remember God does not remember our past confessed sins and neither should we. “19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. 20 For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things. 21 Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.” 1st John 3:19-21 As the hymn writer put it in Leave It There. “If the world from you withhold of its silver and its gold, And you have to get along with meager fare, Just remember, in His Word, how He feeds the little fire Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there” Whatever your burden just leave it with Jesus and trust Him with it.

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Words are cheap, it’s actions that cost. In daily living it’s not just what one says that’s the evidence of their beliefs and or character. But their actions even when no one is looking. Compassion is sympathy for someone in need. The apostle writes, if one has some ability, yes he’s talking here about material goods, he is not talking just for the wealthy but those that have something they can share. The challenge is for us as believers is to have an open hand when others are in need. He doesn’t say unless it’s their fault for their current condition. Often we like to soothe our consciences in telling ourselves if they had done it right they wouldn’t be in need. That may be so but that’s not included here. The prodigal son was welcomed back to the Fathers house without being criticized for his actions. We can assume from the from the prodigals decision to leave that he was involved in many conflicts in the home Note the apostles question, when one doesn’t show compassion on another, he ask how can the love of God dwell in him? The assumed answer is that it can’t and doesn’t. We must always remember that God loved us enough to die in our place when we were His enemies (Romans 5:8). Our question should not be are we going to help but how and how much. The prodigal son hit bottom before he came to his senses and repented but the father loved with an open hand when the son left and also when he returned. Love can only be shown by actions and presenting the truth. We each must decide how we will help those in need before God who knows our hearts and intents. Christ set the example for us to follow as He walked on the earth, knowing His future was the Cross. Even there He loved those who had rejected and hurt Him, He loved them to the end. “17 But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? 18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. 19And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. “ 1st John 3:17-19 The hymn writer put it well in “It’s just like His great love” The first verse, A Friend I have called Jesus, Whose love is strong and true And never fail, however tis tried No matter what I do; I’ve sinned against this love of His, But when I knelt to pray, Confessing all my guilt to Him, The sin-clouds rolled away.” Just sharing my thoughts as I read and think on the passages.

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Love Needed
What the world needs is love! When we see what’s going on throughout the world today. The killings, murders, violence, abuse the enslaving and selling young women and girls in some countries. We can recall an old song “What the world needs is Love” is true but the kind of love that Jesus taught/teaches. Christians especially need to demonstrate the love of Christ to both other Christians and to those without Christ as their Saviour. Its love that denotes, marks true Christianity. In the very beginning Cain killed his brother because of jealously. Because his brother obeyed God in bring the offing which God had called for, and Cain brought what he wanted to. As Cain hated his own brother because of his relationship with God it should be no surprise when the world shows us hatred. In America we have been free from persecution, like that which happens in other countries, but it is coming to our own country as laws are made over speech, what can and cannot be said. You can be sure that fines and imprisonment will soon come here also. We see even now where false religions (Muslims) are given special consideration to have special places for their prayer times even in airports. The evidences of one’s faith in Christ is shown by their love for others.. If you harbor hatred for another it clearly shows that you are not a Christian. Hatred is the same as murder and no murderer has eternal life. But also there is no sin that cannot be forgiven if repented of and confessed to Christ. Our love for God is shown by our love for others, as Christ laid down His life for us we should give our lives for others. Beware of being judgmental and critical of others. We should never condone, tolerate or accept sin but we must love the one sinning, because just as for us Christ died He also died for them. “11 For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. 12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous. 13 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you. 14 We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. 15 whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer; and ye know that no murder hath eternal life abiding in him. 16 Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” 1st John 3:11-16
As the hymn writer in Love Found a Way shows how Jesus found a way to redeem us in love we should show love to others.
“Wonderful love that rescued me, Sunk deep in sin, Guilty and vile as I could be— No hope within; When every ray of light had fled, O glorious day! Raising my soul from out the dead, Love found a way.
Love brought my Savior here to die On Calvary, For such a sinful wretch as I, How can it be? Love bridged the gulf ’twixt me and Heav’n, Taught me to pray, I am redeemed, set free, forgiv’n, Love found a way.
Love opened wide the gates of light To Heav’n’s domain, Where in eternal pow’r and might Jesus shall reign. Love lifted me from depths of woe To endless day, There was no help in earth below; Love found a way.
Love found a way, to redeem my soul, Love found a way, that could make me whole. Love sent my Lord to the cross of shame, Love found a way, O praise His holy Name!

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When we see what’s going on throughout the world today. The killings, murders, violence, abuse, the enslaving and selling young women and girls in some countries. We can recall the words from an old song “what the world needs is love” is true but the kind of love t needed is the kind Jesus teaches. Christians especially need to demonstrate the love of Christ to both other Christians and to those without Christ as their Saviour. It’s love that denotes, marks true Christianity. In the very beginning Cain killed his brother because of jealously, because his brother obeyed God in bringing the offering which God had called for and Cain did not. As Cain hated his own brother because of his relationship with God it should come as no surprise when the world shows us hatred. In America we have been free from persecution like that seen in many countries. But it’s coming to our own country as laws are made over speech what can and what cannot be said. You can be sure that fines and imprisonment will be in our future here also. The evidence of one’s faith in Christ is shown by their love for other Christians and others of different beliefs or no belief. The bible clearly states that if you harbor hatred for another you are not a Christian. Hatred is the same as murder and no murderer has eternal life. Our love for God is shown by our love for others. As Christ laid down His life for us we should give our lives for others in whichever way God leads us. We must beware of being judgmental and critical of others remembering that but for the grace of God we could be the same as they. But along with our love we should never condone, tolerate or accept sin but we must love the one sinning just as Christ did for us when He shed His blood at Calvary. The goal is to reach those without Christ, those blinded by Satan, love with the truth can open doors. “But God commendeth his love toward us in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8.
11 For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. 12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous. 13 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you. 14 We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. 15 Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him. 16 Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” 1st John 3:11-16.

The hymn Love Found a Way
Wonderful love that rescued me, Sunk deep in sin, Guilty and vile as I could be, No hope within; When evey ray of light had fled, O glorious day! Raising my soul from out the dead, Love found a way.
Love broughtt my Savior here to die On Calvary, For such a sinful wretch as I How can it be? Love bridged the gulf twixt me and heaven Taught me to pray; I am redeemed, set free forgiven. Love found a way.
Love opened wide the gates of light To heavens domain, Where in eternal power and might Jesus shall reign ; Love lifted me from depth of woe To endless day; There was no help in earth below Love found a way.
Love found a way to redeem my soul, Love found a way that could make me whole Love sent my Lord to the cross of shame, Love found a way O praise His holy name!

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