Sunday, December 25, 2011


(The following lesson is from the book “The Faith that Prays” by Steve Bray)

     Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am {sharing in the life and power of the kingdom}, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me… (John 17:24)
      If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me {through the cross}; and where I am {at the throne of power}, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me {in the resurrection power of the Spirit}, him My Father will honor. (John 12:25-26)
     But you shall be named the priests of the Lord, they shall call you the servants of our God. (Isa. 61:6)
     A holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. (1 Pet. 2:5)
     Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them. They shall neither hunger anymore nor thirst anymore… (Rev. 7:15-16)

God intends for His children to enter into the firstfruits of the heavenly life that exists in His eternal kingdom while we are in this world. The Holy Spirit is able to take of this heavenly form of life and begin making it known within our inner being. (1 Cor. 2:9-10; John 16:14-15) We can begin to know the glory of our Great King and begin serving Him night and day as priests at His throne of power. When we are sharing with Him in His life our soul is satisfied and He keeps us from hungering and thirsting after the things of this world. He completely sets us free from its self-seeking and self-exalting ways so that we may serve Him with undivided devotion.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ. (Eph. 1:3)

But God…because of His great love…made us alive together with Christ…and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. (Eph. 2:4-6)

Today is the day to choose to enter into this great salvation. “How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord…?” (Heb. 2: 3)

Jesus was anointed by the Spirit to become the Great High Priest. “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me.” (Isa. 61: 1; Luke 4:18) We too can now share with Him in that same anointing. “But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things…and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.” (1 John 2:27) This anointing with the Holy Spirit teaches us to abide in the Son so we may live with Him and share with Him in the power and the glory of His throne.

Christ’s disciples, through this divine anointing, become as one with the Great High Priest and Intercessor. They are made high priests who live to bring blessings to others through the ministry of intercession.

Like every son of Aaron, every member of Christ’s body has a right to enter into the priesthood. But not every Christian exercises their right and enters into their inheritance. They possess a birthright, but not everyone enters into the blessing. Many are still entirely ignorant of it. “For many are called, but few are chosen.” (Matt. 22:14) In fact, there are many, like Esau, who end up trading this birthright so they may live for the temporal pleasures they can have from this world. (Heb. 12:16) God sees it as spiritual adultery. (Jam. 4:4)

We need to lay hold of an understanding of what our Lord’s salvation was really intended to do if we hope to avoid missing out on this glorious inheritance in the saints. As priests we are to stop living for ourselves so that we are free to serve the Lord night and day at His throne of power. Living wholly to carry out the “greater works” of leading others into the eternal kingdom of God becomes the clearest sign we are abiding in the One who “always lives to make intercession.” (Heb. 7:25)

God used the tribe of Levi as an example to help reveal the work of a priest. “The Lord separated the tribe of Levi…to stand before the Lord to minister unto Him, and to bless His Name.” (Deut. 10:8) The priest’s role of blessing the Name of the Lord included leading others into a close relationship with God.

The priest had the right to dwell with the Lord in His house and to be a means for bringing blessings to the people. He was also responsible for making the people aware of the sacrifices required of them. After the priest had determined that an acceptable sacrifice was made, he would present it to God. Only then could he ask and receive the blessing.

As priests of the Lord today we are in a place to make petitions for the heavenly bread that is able to sustain God’s eternal life within the soul. Once the sacrifice has been examined, and we are sure it is complete and without blemish, we can begin praying for the blessing.

A priest is thus a man who does not live for himself. He walks in communion with God and lives to serve the Lord and His purposes. His work is to call people to repentance and to explain how they must present themselves to God as living sacrifices so they may come into a right relationship with Him. (Rom. 12:1) The priest knows that God will only send the fire from heaven to show His acceptance of the offering when their sacrifice is offered without blemish.

Christians, after being called out by God through the new birth, need to be led to the point where they are willing to present themselves to the Lord without holding anything back. The offering must be total before it is considered “unblemished.” The objective is to bring them to the place where the fire from heaven comes down to consume the remains of the old self-exalting and self-seeking nature. It is in this sense that A.W. Tozer speaks of Christians needing to be men and women who have come out of the fire. Jesus Himself said, “For everyone will be seasoned with fire.” (Mark 9:49)

Isaiah once asked, “Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire?” (33:14) In verse 15 and 16 he says that it is those who “walk uprightly.” Once the flesh-life has been consumed, the child of God is able to reside in the presence of the Holy Fire without feeling pain. It is only painful when the flesh-life is alive and active. The fire only consumes what is not of God. Once the believer has passed through this consuming fire he “shall dwell on high” and become a partaker with the life of our holy God. While this consuming of the flesh-life is painful, it enables us to become “partakers of His holiness.” (Heb. 12:10)

Malachi, as God’s prophet, told the people how the Lord would come as a refiner’s fire to purify the temple and enable the Levites (those who where consecrated to God) to walk in righteousness. (Mal. 3:1-3) When the Refiner came no one would be able to “stand” in the pride of life. He comes to destroy the old self-exalting nature so that no flesh will ever glory in His presence.

In a reference to this promise, John the Baptist said, “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance {for the remission of sins—Mark 1:4}, but…He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (Matt 3:11) It was the tongues of fire coming to rest on each individual disciple in the upper room on the day of Pentecost that purified their hearts and turned them into vessels of God’s glory—His life of self-sacrificing love. (Acts 2:1-3; 15:8-9) These priests of God, once their hearts were purified, were then able to use intercessory prayer to bind and loose here on earth. (Matt. 16:19)

This is the high calling of every believer. Every member of Christ’s body has been redeemed for the one purpose of becoming one of God’s sanctified priests in the midst of the perishing millions around them. In conformity to Jesus, who is our Great High Priest, they are to be the ministers and stewards of God’s grace in the world. After leading the people to make the required sacrifice, they are to bind the work by asking the Father to sanctify the hearts of these true worshippers. The fully sanctified priests of God, in this sense, have been given the keys to the kingdom of God.

As God is holy, so the priest was to be especially holy. This implies not only being separated from everything unclean, but completely devoted to serving the Lord. They had to be set apart to live for His purposes alone. They were not permitted to have personal ownership. Everything in their possession truly belonged to God. Only as they lived in this form of relationship with God could they serve Him as a priest within the holy place.

It is important to understand this principle about the priestly tribes having no earthly inheritance of their own. God was to be their inheritance. They were to live by faith. Set apart unto God, they were to live on Him as well as for Him. Their hearts were not to be tied to anything from this world.

This is all symbolic of how the New Testament priest was to live in this age of fulfillment. The true Christian life is a very special calling. Every believer was to become a priest unto God. “You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people.” (1 Pet. 2:9) And as God’s holy and heavenly priesthood we were to live as “strangers and pilgrims on the earth.” (Heb. 11:13) We are not to expend our time and energies seeking to possess temporal things. We are to overcome the world and reside within the eternal Kingdom-life of our Lord where we are empowered by the grace of God to expend ourselves in a life of living for the good of others.

But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. (1 Cor 15:10)

We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain… Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. (2 Cor. 6:1-2)

God had chosen all of Aaron’s sons to be priests. Each was a priest by birth. However, they could not begin their work without a special act of consecration. They were required to consecrate themselves entirely to God. Similarly, every Christian is a priest by right of his blood relationship to the Great High Priest. But the believer’s inheritance, which includes sharing with Christ in His divine life and power, can only be received by entering into a full consecration to Him.

Aaron and his sons were consecrated in a special way. (Ex. 29) After being washed and clothed in new garments, they were anointed with the holy oil. After preparing themselves according to God’s specifications, they were sprinkled with the blood and the oil together. In a spiritual sense, the blood in this special anointing represents Christ’s power to do away with the sinful nature and the oil represents the new nature—the fruit of God’s Spirit.

As a penitent, when the future priest first sought forgiveness for his sins, the blood was sprinkled on the altar—not on his person. But now, for priestly consecration, there was to be a closer contact with the blood. The ear, hand and foot (the parts of the body in contact with the world and needed for God’s service) were brought under its power through this special baptism. The whole being was then sanctified or set apart entirely for God’s service. This is the blood that cleanses from “all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:7) It destroys the independent nature—the source of self-will and sin.

When the believer is led to seek full priestly access to God, he feels the need of a fuller and more enduring experience of the power of the blood. Where he had previously been content to have the blood sprinkled on the mercy seat to gain his needed pardon, he now needs a more personal sprinkling and cleansing of his heart. He desires to be fully separated from the old man. This purifying work of the blood is what permits the priest to come into the presence of God within the holy place and live as an effective intercessor before His throne. “Blessed are the pure in heart, For they shall see God.” (Matt. 5:8)

Are you willing to stop living for yourself and live as a priest unto God, within His presence, so you may begin performing this holy work? You know what kind of surrender it demands: The seed must be buried in the ground where it completely breaks down into nothingness before it can rise up. (John 12:24-26) You cannot live in God’s Presence while you are still seeking to have some of your own honor and glory. There needs to be a real loss of this old form of life before it is possible to be highly exalted to the place where there can be a sharing with Christ in the power of His throne.

Abiding in this heavenly union with the Great High Priest, “You shall ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you.” You will have power to pray the effective prayer that accomplishes much for the kingdom of God.

Come, brother and sister, come! Be a priest, only a priest, and all priest! Let go of the world so that God Himself can become your inheritance. Continue to wait on God until you are walking before the Lord in the full consciousness that He has personally anointed you with His life of intercessory prayer.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Why Would I Celebrate Christmas?

by Gina Duffey

I know I could nitpick this to death and find an excuse to keep Christmas, but after honestly searching out the matter, it’s obvious to me as a member of the body of Christ that I should reject it as having anything to do with Jesus.

Jesus did not leave instruction for us to celebrate his birthday. He told us to remember that his body was given for us when we break bread together. He said nothing about remembering his birthday and there is no precedence for it in the bible.

His birth date is not given to us in scripture. There are many articles that prove Jesus was most likely born in the fall, but you can also find articles that prove he was born in December. I have no idea and really don’t care because if he wanted us to know, we would.

There are only two birthdays recorded in scripture (Pharaoh and Herod) and at both parties someone was murdered. See Genesis 40 and Mark 6. I’ve researched the subject of birthday celebrations somewhat and have concluded that early Christians did not celebrate them as it was considered a heathen thing to do. Again, there is also information that claims differently. According to The Satanic Bible, “The highest of all holidays in the Satanic religion is the date of one’s own birth.” (I thought it was Halloween) This is why I am not that into birthday parties anymore. Why would I want to celebrate my birthday knowing this, and knowing the early Christians didn’t do it and only the heathens did in the bible?

What about the word “Christmas”? This is short for Christ’s Mass. The name alone proves that Christmas belongs to the Roman Catholics who invented it. Here is the only reason I even need to reject this holiday... I am not catholic! I do not believe in the mass, in fact, I flat out reject it. If anyone reading this does not know what the catholic mass is, it’s the bread and the wine, or communion, administered by the priests in the catholic church. They teach that when the priest prays over the bread and wine it becomes the literal body and blood of Christ. For some reason some catholics deny this when you ask, but I have their book called Catechism of the Catholic Church (1994) and I promise you, it’s in there. It’s called Transubstantiation. You can search hundreds of catholic websites that have this information. Anyway, they have a special service every Christmas called Midnight Mass where, in honor of Jesus’ birthday, they kill him once again. I’m sorry, but this is wrong. They say I just don’t understand but I understand more than I wish I did. I could go into all this, but this paper is about why I don’t celebrate Christmas, not why I reject catholic mass. I have many catholic family members and I love them, but I don’t love anything about catholicism.

Another thing I consider is how much the world loves Christmas. If the spirit behind Christmas was the real Jesus, the world would not want it, then or now. I get this idea from scripture, obviously. The pagan traditions that honored the sun gods were given a Christian makeover by the (so called) church authorities. This whitewash has gone on for ages and now it is going backwards. The world is trying to take Jesus out of Christmas and Christians are wigging out. Jesus never was in Christmas; that was a facade. We’re fighting to keep Jesus in something he was never in to start with except in pretence. What a joke, and we’re the punch line. I say let the world have it, let it go back where it belongs.

I’ve found that many Christians are aware of the pagan origins of Christmas. They sincerely try to play down the commercial side of the holiday and play up the birth of the Saviour. They say they do it to honor Jesus, not false gods. At one website I saw the following story from the bible was mentioned to show that this, though sincere, doesn’t work. Read from Exodus...

EXODUS 32:1-5 And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him. And Aaron said unto them, Break off the golden earrings, which are in the ears of your wives, of your sons, and of your daughters, and bring them unto me. And all the people brake off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them unto Aaron. And he received them at their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool, after he had made it a molten calf: and they said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, Tomorrow is a feast to the LORD.

The question was asked, did God think this feast was for him? Did he appreciate what they did and accept this honor? No. Read further to find out what he thought about his people worshiping him this way. (He was going to destroy them.) This is the main reason I reject Christmas as Christian; it’s pagan worship in disguise. Information about this is too widely available to even bother denying it. What I have found is that alot of Christians don’t deny it, they just don’t think it matters. I can’t in good conscience agree with that. Mark 7:8 For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. Other such like things? Like putting aside God’s plain direction and holding to the Christmas traditions of men? This passage isn’t about the washing of pots; it’s about obedience to God.

God had forbidden his people to learn the ways of the heathens as they moved into their lands. We live among the unsaved, but we are not to practice their ways. This obviously still applies to us in the new covenant given all the NT scriptures that tell us we are in the world but not of the world, to love not the world and to have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, and so on. God's people are still supposed to be separate, distinct and peculiar. We should stick out, not blend in. God had especially forbidden his people to enquire as to how these heathens worshiped their gods and then attempt to worship him that way. Read from Jeremiah...

JEREMIAH 10:1-4 Hear ye the word which the LORD speaketh unto you, O house of Israel: Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. (The signs that scared them was the waning of the sun. The days got shorter and the nights longer and they thought their beloved sun god was mad at them.) For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. (Christmas trees can be traced all the way back to tree worship, so don’t bother informing me this isn’t about Christmas trees.)

JEREMIAH 12:29-32 When the LORD thy God shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods. What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.

When we imitate the world in worship, it is strange fire to God. Search “strange fire” in your bible and see. Think about when Cain killed Abel. Cain gave his offering his way and God did not accept it and Cain’s anger and jealousy caused him to murder his own brother. God wants worship his way, not ways that seem right to us. Our sincerity does not trump this.

Some argue, “But it’s been in the church for so long!” SO WHAT!! A thousand years is like a day unto the Lord and if he hated it then he hates it now. Heathen traditions cannot be Christianized. According to God, we can't take holidays that honor pagan gods and change them to honor him. It’s crystal clear that God does not accept it but that is precisely what happened when the Romans took over Christianity in the 300s and superimposed Jesus over the celebrations dedicated to pagan gods. (They did the same thing for Easter, which I also reject.) If I broke all this down here I’d have three more pages so I added some links below that explain the belief systems that surrounded the false gods and how they got mixed up in the church and became Christmas and Easter. You can search the true origins of Christmas for yourself and get hundreds of hits.

I won’t even bother to talk about Santa, Rudolph and Frosty. Everybody knows that side of Christmas is not Christian. But on a side note I ask, where in the bible do you EVER see an angel depicted as a female? It is also quite evident that the entire holiday reeks of worldliness no matter how much you play up the birth of the Saviour.

So, considering all this, why would I celebrate Christmas?

Can we change the spirit of something?
Can we redeem pagan traditions?
Can we offer to God something previously sacrificed to Satan?
I’m sure that some would argue, but no, we can’t.

If we do it anyway, stubbornly insisting that we are honoring Jesus, does He accept it?

Gina Duffey


I don't necessarily endorse other information found on these sites.

Where did Santa Claus come from anyway?
[interesting to note Old Nick was a British name for the devil]

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Great God of Entertainment

(from The Root of the Righteous, by A.W. Tozer)

Chapter 8

A German philosopher many years ago said something to the effect that the more a man has in his own heart the less he will require from the outside; excessive need for support from without is proof of the bankruptcy of the inner man.

If this is true (and I believe it is) then the present inordinate attachment to every form of entertainment is evidence that the inner life of modern man is in serious decline. The average man has no central core of moral assurance, no spring within his own breast, no inner strength to place him above the need for repeated psychological shots to give him the courage to go on living. He has become a parasite on the world, drawing his life from his environment unable to live a day apart from the stimulation which society affords him.

Sohleiermacher held that the feeling of dependence lies at the root of all religious worship, and that however high the spiritual life might rise it must always begin with a deep sense of a great need which only God could satisfy. If this sense of need and a feeling of dependence are at the root of natural religion it is not hard to see why the great god Entertainment is so ardently worshiped by so many. For there are millions who cannot live without amusement; life without some form of entertainment for them is simply intolerable; they look forward to the blessed relief afforded by professional entertainers and other forms of psychological narcotics as a dope addict looks to his daily shot of heroin. Without them they could not summon courage to face existence.

No one with common human feeling will object to the simple pleasures of life, nor to such harmless forms of entertainment as may help to relax the nerves and refresh the mind exhausted by toil. Such things if used with discretion may be a blessing along the way. That is one thing. The all-out devotion to entertainment as a major activity for which and by which men live is definitely something else again.

The abuse of a harmless thing is the essence of Sin. The growth of the amusement phase of human life to such fantastic proportions is a portent, a threat to the souls of modern men. It has been built into a multimillion dollar racket with greater power over human minds and human character than any other educational influence on earth. And the ominous thing is that its power is almost exclusively evil, rotting the inner life, crowding out the long eternal thoughts which would fill the souls of men if they were but worthy to entertain them. And the whole thing has grown into a veritable religion which holds its devotees with a strange fascination, and a religion, incidentally, against which it is now dangerous to speak.

For centuries the Church stood solidly against every form of worldly entertainment, recognizing it for what it was - a device for wasting time, a refuge from the disturbing voice of conscience, a scheme to divert attention from moral accountability. For this she got herself abused roundly by the sons of this world. But of late she has become tired of the abuse and has given over the struggle. She appears to have decided that if she cannot conquer the great god Entertainment she may as well join forces with him and make what use she can of his powers. So today we have the astonishing spectacle of millions of dollars being poured into the unholy job of providing earthly entertainment for the so-called sons of heaven.

Religious entertainment is in many places rapidly crowding out the serious things of God. Many churches these days have become little more than poor theatres where fifth -rate "producers" peddle their shoddy wares with the full approval of evangelical leaders who can even quote a holy text in defense of their delinquency. And hardly a man dares raise his voice against it.

The great god Entertainment amuses his devotees mainly by telling them stories. The love of stories, which is a characteristic of childhood, has taken fast hold of the minds of the retarded saints of our day, so much so that not a few persons manage to make a comfortable living by spinning yarns and serving them up in various disguises to church people. What is natural and beautiful in a child may be shocking when it persists into adulthood, and more so when it appears in the sanctuary and seeks to pass for true religion.

Is it not a strange thing and a wonder that, with the shadow of atomic destruction hanging over the world and with the coming of Christ drawing near, the professed followers of the Lord should be giving themselves up to religious amusements? That in an hour when mature saints are so desperately needed vast numbers of believers should revert to spiritual childhood and clamor for religions toys?

"Remember, (I) Lord, what is come upon us: consider, and behold our reproach. The crown Is fallen from our head: woe unto us, that we have sinned! For this our heart is faint; for these things our eyes are dim."

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

The Purpose of the Great Tribulation

And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; (Romans 5:3)

The Christian Church will be on the earth throughout the great tribulation according to the Scriptures. The spirit of humanism has entered Christian thinking, giving rise to the doctrine that God loves the Gentile believers of the wealthy nations of the twentieth century so much more than He does the saints of all other centuries and countries that He is not willing that these favorites of His should suffer to any extent.

The "any-moment pre-tribulation rapture" error apparently was brought forth as a "revelation" in the middle of the nineteenth century.

How unscriptural! How lacking in the realities of history! How self-centered!

God never does anything without a purpose. His purpose often is set forth in the Scriptures.

If God will send great tribulation upon the world there is a purpose for it. Perhaps we can find in the Scriptures God's purpose in sending great tribulation on the inhabitants of the earth, and also the provisions God has made for His elect during the period of the tribulation.

Let us turn to the Book of Isaiah:

In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel. And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem: When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning. And the Lord will create upon every dwelling place of mount Zion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day, and the shining of a flaming fire by night: for upon all the glory shall be a defence. And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain. (Isaiah 4:2-6)

The key to understanding the purpose of tribulation, whether great or small, is the expression, "In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and glorious."

A parallel statement is as follows:

Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God. (Isaiah 62:3)

The Scriptures state that the Christian Church, the Wife of the Lamb, God's Israel, the good olive tree, will be perfect.

That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. (Ephesians 5:27)

Paul declared that the ministries of the Church would function until:

 . . . we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of [maturity as measured by] the fulness of Christ: (Ephesians 4:13).

Here is a doctrine that needs to be emphasized today. The Christian Church, the Body of Christ, finally will be perfect in every detail. Indeed, there shall be a holy city, a new Jerusalem.

R. Thompson

Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Friend of the World is the Enemy of God

"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." (1 John 2:15)

"Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God." (James 4:4)
With all the activities and traditions of the IC (Institutionalized Church) these days it should become clear to us how much like the world it has become and why it can only produce dead works. It has joined hand in hand with the "things of the world" to a point that there is no difference in the "morally good" but "unsaved" people of the world. Just like the world, they are only able to sometimes clean up the outside of the cup while the inside remains filthy, and then "humbly" say, "We all sin sometimes and no one is perfect". It is a dead and powerless "Church"; it is apostate and unable to produce the Life of Christ in its members.
"Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. (26 ) blind Pharisee, cleanse first that [which is] within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also." (Matthew 23:25-26)
There is an antichrist spirit spoken of in 1 John the 2nd chapter. It is the spirit of the world, and he opposes all that is Christ’s and His rule in us. This spirit sits in the hearts of those that find their life in the world and its things. Exposing this antichrist spirit that is so prevalent in "Christendom" today is what is needed, so perhaps some that have a love of the truth, (no matter the cost to themselves) will hear the words of the Spirit say "come out from among them and be separate."
"Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean [thing]; and I will receive you," (2 Corinthians 6:17)
The purpose in exposing things like the truth about Halloween as this video does or exposing any of the other ungodly acts the worldly Church condones and participates in, isn't to get some to stop it and to clean up their act (which would only be cleaning up the outside of the cup again). But, it is to expose the heart and the whole way of life that the end time apostate church has produced in those that would follow it. And most important, to cause any that would hear the truth to turn to the real Christ who is able to give them His life that will produce true Holiness in them, bringing sweet fellowship with Him in true righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost. This is what the true life of Christ in us is all doesn't need the things of the world to be fulfilled, Christ is all and in all for them. The world's pleasures become a "let down" to those whose life is in Christ; there is no longer any real desire for worldly pleasures in them and the spirit of world hates them for it.
"My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you," (Galatians 4:19)

"For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:" - (Colossians 2:9-10)
Being complete in Christ is a process that the Lord works in us as we mature in Him, but the apostate church does not allow for this growth in us; rather, they encourage our dependence on them and the world for our substance. We must be willing to separate ourselves out from the world and live for His use alone and be willing for Him to begin this work in us. If we keep looking to the things of the world...even the "good" and "clean" kind of activities these churches have for our entertainment, happiness and fulfillment, we need to ask ourselves, "Is Christ being formed in me through these activities? Is He becoming my all in all? Are the desires or need for these things becoming less and less?" Or do we "need" church life or the "good" things that the world has to offer for us to be spiritually fulfilled?

The answers to these questions can show us if Christ is becoming our life and if we are becoming complete in Him...or not. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 13:11 "When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things." If we are not growing up in Him, we are falling away. The outside of the cup may be very clean, but on the inside there is filth and no life. Jesus said, "So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth". Revelation 3:16
"And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward [is] with me, to give every man according as his work shall be." (Revelation 22:12)
These are the last days, and there is no time to be playing games, if we don't "get it right" now it will soon be too late. There is a saying, "it is hard to see the forest for the trees"; and likewise, it is hard to see clearly the false gospel being preached in the world today while you are still in the world. Please consider the possibility that what I say is true, that most "Christian Churches in America" are apostate. Where does that leave those that are in it? What would they have to lose if they listened to what is being said here and seek God with everything in them? Many have been in the "church" their whole lives and have been "good" Christians, but have been so blinded...little by little over the years, they don't even realize how much of the world they are in because they still go to church, pray and are good moral people. They are doing all the church has told them to do, but they are so full of the world and don't even realize it. They do not realize they are in need of anything. It will take the Holy Spirit to open their eyes.
"Yet the LORD hath not given you an heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and ears to hear, unto this day."  (Deuteronomy 29:4)
I pray the Lord will quicken their hearts and give them eyes to see and ears to hear before it is too late!
"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. ... Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see." - (Revelation 3:6, 17-18)

I imagine that many who are deeply involved in the IC will read this, but will only get angry or assume that they or their church or denomination isn't like that, or I am just being legalistic and unloving to say such things. But if the Spirit of the Lord truly dwells in any...I believe the Lord is able to prick their hearts and give them eyes to see the fact that they are not yet living the same kind of life that our Lord Jesus Christ lived. Nor have they lived the kind of life that the apostles lived that followed Christ; it was a life that caused horrible persecutions to come upon them, but why? They didn't die because of the miracles they did or for their good works...what was it that made the world hate them so and kill them? Jesus called his own religious people "the world", they are the ones that hated Him and killed Him. We like to think the "world" is only those that are living in obvious sins...those who do not claim to know or follow God. But these were not Christ's enemies that put Him to death. Followers of Christ were hated and killed because they were not part of the world, and the world hated them for it. Their very existence was like a light shining on those that called themselves godly, and exposed their hypocrisy.
"He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked." (1 John 2:6)
With all the mega-churches out there today with thousands attending them, why is there no real change in the world if what they have is so real? Where is the holiness that is required to see God produced in their followers? Where is the cross of dying daily to their own wants and desires, to live only for Him who purchased them with His blood? Why are they not living their lives in the same manner that Christ's followers lived their lives in the first century? I am not talking about outward signs of good moral "acts", which are only our "reasonable" service, which even the "heathens" can produce. But the Lord requires holiness (separated for God's use only) in all that would be His. The best that can be produced in the apostate church is the world's antichrist attitude that says, "We all sin sometimes and no one is perfect".
"Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. ... And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight." - (1 John 3:6, 22 KJV)
Our daily cross, which is living for God's will and pleasure and not our own, is not what is taught today; in fact the opposite is implied with an attitude that God is living for our pleasure instead. To demonstrate this truth, just listen to the way we pray. Do we pray as the world would pray, for what "seems" right in our own eyes? Do we receive all that we ask for in prayer as 1 John 5:14 says? "And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: (15) And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him."

Do we wonder why prayers aren't answered every time we pray, and we are not moving in more of the power of the Holy Spirit? Do we pray in the Holy Spirit by waiting on Him to give us what to pray for, or are we so filled with our own wants and desires that we cannot "hear" the moving of the Holy Spirit on how to pray? This is how the world lives; by its own wants and desires, this should not be so with us.
"Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God," - (Hebrews 6:1 KJV)
It is time to leave the ways of the world, to grow up and move on into perfection. Our goal is to no longer be moved by our earthly desires and emotions, but allowing Christ to live His life through us. This is received by faith in Him, for what is impossible with man is possible with God. If we are willing, through many trials and tribulations, the Lord will bring us there. There may be many ups and down, but He will complete the work He began in us. This was His plan before the foundation of the world, to perform this work in us, but it cannot be done with one foot in the world and one foot in the Kingdom. Let us forget the past and how we might have failed yesterday, and continue to press on toward the mark of this high calling in Christ Jesus, who is the author and finisher of our faith.


Friday, October 28, 2011

Halloween: Day of Human Sacrificing

Every Christian should watch this and rethink what they do on Oct 31

Many may want to believe that this is an isolated thing, but the truth is, this is happening on this weekend all over America in every city and state.  Where is the light for these abused Children to run to, when they see “Christians” celebrating the holiday too? 

Years ago I heard a testimony of a women on our local Christian T.V. channel tell how, as a child, she wanted to run away from her Satanist family because of the same type of abuse mentioned in this film, but saw no hope and believed everyone did the same thing as she saw Christians celebrating the holiday as well. 

It breaks your heart to see what a little “compromising” may be doing to add to the despair of these children.  Where is the light for these kids on this day…or are we so concerned that “our” children won’t miss out on the fun of getting candy on that day and don’t want them to stick out like a sore thumb for not celebrating it? 

Not conforming to the world and the things they do can be painful for our children…but not near as painful as the true consequences of being a part of this world.  We don’t want the world to hate us and especially we don’t want them to hate our children…so we compromise, and then there is no light for those that need it so desperately!  We look just like “them”…!     

Jhn If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

1Jo Love not the world, neither the things [that are] in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

1Jo For all that [is] in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.   

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Ruth's testimony

This is the thrilling testimony of God's Grace in how He miraculously drew Ruth, a former Muslim, to Himself.

Right click here
and then select "save target as" to download the audio of Ruth sharing her testimony in her own words.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

So, What's The Big Deal About This Push for Unity? by Gina Duffey

What Is Wrong With The Ecumenical Movement?

Why exactly is this push for unity and peace all wrong? A verse in John 17 is used as the proof text behind this drive for unity. It is part of a prayer that Jesus prayed before he went to the cross.

John 17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

This scripture does not give us leave to have unity at the expense of truth and sound doctrine. Please read the entire chapter, it's only 26 verses. When read in it's full context, you will see that Jesus was asking the Father to make all of his disciples be one with each other, as He was with the Father. He was NOT praying for all of mankind to be one with each other...neither was he praying for all religions to be in unity.

Verse 9: I pray for them: I pray NOT for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.

Verse 20: Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;

Jesus was praying for his disciples and everyone who would follow Him through the gospel they would preach. He was not praying that the whole world would be one and He was not praying that all people of all religions would be one. God has always commanded his people to be separate and distinct. The current drive for unity is what the false teachers say will help bring about world peace. They are trying to tear down what God put in place, which is a wall of separation between the true faith and all false religions. This ecumenical agenda is antichrist in spirit because it is working against what Christ is doing.

Matthew 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

A sword splits things apart! Please read the 10th chapter of Matthew. No one or two verses should ever be pulled out and used without taking the whole passage and it's meaning into consideration. One of the truths that Jesus taught was that He was the only door to the Father. He said that He *IS* Eternal Life so no one can have eternal life without being in HIM. A disciple [follower] of Christ can NOT be unified in spirit with a person who is trying to attain Eternal Life any other way. Yet the ecumenical agenda seeks for all of Christianity to be in unity with people of all faiths, for the sake of world peace, and they say it's what God wants and for what Jesus prayed. This movement will not bring true peace but is setting the stage for a leader who will be the head over all faiths.

There is a remnant who will not be a part of this call for [false] unity. The sword of the Lord has separated them unto Himself. They will not hold hands with, or pray and worship with, anyone who is not worshiping the one true God. Not for world peace, not for poverty and hunger, not for AIDS, nor any other cause. As this agenda moves forward, the faithful remnant will stick out like a sore thumb. The time will come when these will be considered the trouble makers and the enemies of world peace. They will be hated for it, they be will be condemned for it. It's already begun. Professing Christians in our own country are already beginning to ostracize those who contend for the true faith.

John 10:9 I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.

1 John 5:20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.

John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes unto the Father, but by me.

1 John 5:11-12 And this is the record, that God has given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that has the Son has life; and he that has not the Son of God has not life.

Gina Duffey

Monday, October 03, 2011

Feast of Tabernacles - George H. Warnock


This book was first written in the spring of 1951, and published a few weeks later. It seemed to lay almost dormant for a number of years, for great revivals were sweeping the country, and the spiritual drought of many decades had given way to times of refreshing. God had much more for His people, but as long as the blessings continued to flow very few seemed to be interested in anything more. But then there came a famine in the land, and once again God was able to speak to the hearts of His people. In spite of all the wonderful things that were taking place in the Church, God's people were beginning to realize that something very vital was lacking; and many began to lose interest in the spectacular. The big tents were folded up and the people began to gather together just to "hear" what God was saying. There had developed a new hunger to know God's ways, and a new thirsting after God and righteousness.

This is not to say that God stopped working in the realm of the miraculous, for He has indeed been faithful in pouring out His Spirit upon all flesh even as He promised He would do in the last days. But in spite of the miraculous many of God's people have become aware of the fact that we have not been able to meet the challenge of this hour. And for every victory that we may seem to have entered into there remain evident areas of great distress and great defeat on every hand. The Church has still not become that vital, living manifestation of Christ in the earth that she should be. Our prayer is that God's people everywhere might quickly come to the overwhelming realization that we are still far, far from God's desire for us, and that there might come into our midst a genuine spirit of repentance before the Day of the Lord breaks forth upon us. For truly we are very close to that hour. It is harvest-time, and the Husbandman walks through the fields, examining the fruit to see how good it is, and if it is ready yet for the sickle. For in this hour He is looking for one thing, and for one thing only... and that is, "the precious fruit of the earth." That is why He is faithful to send the "latter rain" where it is needed, and faithful also to send the sunshine and the heat and the drought, to hasten the maturing of "the full corn in the ear." In harvest-time He desires one thing, and one thing only, and that is the FRUIT. In harvest-time everything else is chaff!

And what is "FRUIT"? Let any gardener answer that question. For certainly it is not just gathering what you can in a certain season called Autumn. Certainly it is not just coming to the end of a long, dry summer, and getting ready for winter. From the time He planted the seed the good gardener has been waiting patiently to receive something from His field that will be equally as good as the precious seed that He planted. Now the Lord is a good Gardener, and He is the Lord of the Harvest. And He cannot be satisfied until He comes into His garden and discovers the FRUIT that corresponds to the Seed that He became in the earth when He "fell into the ground and died."

And so beloved, let us remember that harvest-time is threshing-time. Think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you... and let us not be discouraged when we see all the devastation that is taking place, and will yet take place, in the political, the economic, and the religious world. For all must be crushed in pieces in this day when God is shaking "not the earth only, but also the heaven..." And let us remember that He is doing this for His own glory, and for your sake and mine. We have a kingdom which cannot be shaken; and we must be loosed from all the entanglements of this present world system. God has been very patient with us as He prepared our hearts, planted the good seed, weeded the soil, watered it with the showers of heaven, and then sent the sunshine to dry up the stalk and to mature the fruit. "Be ye also patient, establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh."

-- August, 1980 -- The author -

Click here to read book

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Power for Working

(The following lesson was developed from the writings of Steve Bray- “The Faith that Prays.”)

Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. And I know that You always hear Me. (John 11:41-42)

Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. (John 14:12-14)
The Son surrendered His right to assert His own power and authority when He came to live as a man in a mortal body. Because He was fully man, He too had to live by faith and receive everything from His Father through the power of the Holy Spirit. He knew that if He was to live according to God’s original plan for man it would be necessary to receive everything from above. “A man can receive nothing unless it has been given to him from heaven.” (John 3:27) He would need to permit the Father to be the source of everything He did. Thus, the Son never did anything on His own.

I do nothing of Myself… And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him. (John 8:28-29)

Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works. Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves. (John 14:10-11)
Jesus chose to live as a vessel of the Father’s life and works. Through communion with His Father He was able to learn of the Father’s will and then carry it out through His prayers of faith. He was enabled to pray in harmony with His Father’s will because He waited on the Father to communicate to Him through the Spirit what needed to be done. This is what enabled Him to receive answers to His prayers.

I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear {from the Spirit}, I judge {make decisions and respond}; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me. (John 5:30)
The Son did not ask His Father to answer His prayers just for show. He too had to depend on the Spirit to guide Him and to show Him what the Father was intending to work out through Him. And then, as He lived as a man without His own power, He carried out the works of His Father through the power of the Holy Spirit based on His prayers of faith.

Jesus knew that He would always be heard by the Father because He was totally committed to doing His Father’s will. Even at the age of twelve, we hear Him saying, “Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” (Luke 2:49) He did not “do anything” or “say anything” that was not received from the heavenly realms through the Holy Spirit. This is why His judgments were always righteous. As He lived “as one” with His Father, everything He did came from His Father in heaven.

We too are expected to receive our spiritual life and our daily guidance from heaven and then carry out His works through the power of the Holy Spirit. We are to live as a vessel of His life and works in the same way He lived as a vessel of His Father’s life and works. Those who will stop living in a self-originated form of life and begin responding to the still small voice of the Spirit will be led into a place where they can begin sharing with the Son in an abundantly full measure of His eternal life and begin doing His “greater works.”

My sheep hear My voice…and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life… (John 10:26)

The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and strengthen your bones; You shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail. Those from among you shall {be led through these greater works to} build the old waste places; You shall raise up the foundations of many generations; And you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach, The Restorer of Streets to Dwell In {as you carry out the work of establishing the true kingdom of God }. (Isa. 58:11-12)
When we learn to walk in the Spirit as Jesus did, which entails receiving everything from Him, He begins to do His “greater works” of restoring the eternal kingdom of God through us. “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.” (John 14:12-14) Now that He has all power and authority in heaven and earth He can begin sharing His dominion and power with His disciples so that His eternal kingdom can be established within the hearts of other men and women in this world.

Not only did the Son come to show the children of God how they are to live, but thanks be to God, our resurrected Lord is now a “life giving spirit.” (1 Cor. 15:45) As the Father was the source of His life in a mortal body, He can now become the source of everything we do. “I will come to you… At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.” (John 14:18, 20) “And lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matt. 18:20)

The Holy Spirit is the One who takes of the shared life of the Trinity and reveals this heavenly life within our inner being. Jesus said, “He {the Spirit} will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. {The Father and the Son share in the same life and will within the Trinity.} That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.” (John 16:14 NIV)

The Spirit is able to reveal the Son’s life and will through our mortal bodies as we choose to walk by His Spirit. And as we share with Him in His spiritual life, we can also share with Him in the power of His throne.

This may help us to understand how the prayers of man, coming through the Son, can have such an effect on the Father. His decrees are not made without reference to the Son. In effect, our words become expressions of the Son’s own petitions. Every request that reaches the Father comes through the Son.

The Lord Jesus is the first-begotten, the Head and Heir of all things. As the Representative of all God’s children, the Son of Man always has a voice in the Father’s decisions. The same holds true for the petitions of the members of His body who have fully surrendered to live as vessels of His life and works. By dying to the old self-originated form of life and choosing to be united together with the Son’s life and will, these children of God can then draw near to the Father through their prayer-union with the Son. “For in Christ all the fullness of Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is head over every power and authority.” (Col. 2:9 NIV)

Is there any wonder why our prayers can have such power? Through our union with the Son, we enter into the workings that are now taking place within the Blessed Trinity. Because we receive this “fullness” of divine life in “bodily form” from Christ (John 1:16), we can be restored to the divine image and put His mighty power to work through our prayers. This is the glorious privilege of the Spirit-led children of God in this age of fulfillment.

I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand {on the throne of power where He now has all dominion} in the heavenly realms. (Eph. 1:18-20 NIV)
The first lesson Jesus provided was simple: Be childlike, pray believingly, and trust the Father to be your provider. Now He points to something much higher. His disciples are to be the source of His work in this world. As the members of His body here on earth, the furthering of His eternal kingdom has been entrusted into the hands of His disciples. Prayer is to be the channel through which the power for that work is received and dispersed. With Christ’s ascension to the throne of power and through the disciple’s union with His spiritual life in the heavenly realms, a new epoch for both their working and their praying then commenced. “For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death {to the old self-originated form of life}, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection.” (Rom. 6:5)

F. B. Meyer exhorts every Christians to enter into this glorious privilege. “If any will dare to venture on the path of separation [from the ways of this world]—cutting themselves aloof from all human aid and from all self-originated effort, content to walk alone with God with no help from any but Him—such will find that all the resources of the divine almightiness will be placed at their disposal.”

This connection comes out clearly in our text from the fourteenth chapter of John. After dying out to their flesh-life and becoming vessels of the Son’s life and works, the disciples, as His body here on earth, were enabled to do an even greater work than He did before being glorified. “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.”

His going away to be glorified—a place where He would possess all power and authority—would provide the disciples with a double blessing. It would enable them to have the divine image restored and exalt them to a place where they could pray in His Name. This relationship would enable them to begin doing the greater works of furthering His eternal Kingdom-life here on earth. And He is still seeking out disciples today who will follow Him into the light of His eternal life and begin spreading this gospel—this good news—about the kingdom of God.

Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel. (Mark 1:14-15)
Has your faith begun to rise up and provide a little understanding of your glorious privilege? You too can be exalted to a special place in the kingdom of God and begin living as a means for your Lord to reveal His power and glory and dominion. We are now in the age of fulfillment when He can accomplish these “greater works” through His disciples. “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand.”

Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time {to the place where you may begin sharing with Him in His reigning life and in the power of His throne} … But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while {in dying out to the old flesh-life}, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you {in the eternal Kingdom-life}. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen. (1 Pet. 5:6, 10-11)

And how true it was! Jesus, during three years of personal labor on earth could not lead anyone into His Kingdom-life of holy love. But after He had paid the price for our sins and was living in His glorified state with the Father, He was in a place to begin communicating His spiritual life to people here on earth. This is something that Jesus could not do while still living in a mortal body. At that point He could only say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” (Matt. 4:17) The Kingdom-life was near to them, but was not yet in them. “Nevertheless know this, that the kingdom of God has come near you.” (Luke 10:11) Thus, Jesus said it would be better for His disciples after He went away and could become the very source of their life.

Jesus was able to reveal this heavenly “light of life,” but He could not share it with anyone until He was glorified. Let us praise the Lord! Now that He has received the right to fill every vessel, we can become vessels of His life and works. “He who descended is also the one who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.” (Eph. 4:10)

We have records to show how men like Peter and Paul, after being clothed with heavenly power, began leading others into God’s heavenly kingdom. Multitudes were enabled to share with the Son in His submissive nature and began doing God’s will here on earth with the same kind of yieldedness as it is done in heaven. And this is exactly what we need to be praying for in our day.

In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come {into the hearts of men and women in this world}. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. (Matt. 6:9-10)

For the kingdom of God is…righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. (Rom. 14:17)

For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth. (Eph. 5:8-9)
Our fleshly human efforts may have some use in restraining sin, in creating social organizations and in preparing the way for a blessing, but the true kingdom of God cannot be advanced without the work of God’s divine power. We might even become as great as John the Baptist in leading others to a repentance that results in the remission of sins and reconciliation with God; but if we are to do the “greater works” of drawing others into our Lord’s heavenly Kingdom-life of holy love we must begin using a greater power than was available to John the Baptist in his day.

The disciple who lives wholly for the kingdom of God, for Christ’s will and honor alone, shall be given the power to appropriate His promises. Anyone who tries to take hold of these promises only when he wants something for himself will be disappointed. God will not honor those who try to make Jesus the servant of their own pleasures. (Jam. 4:3) But those who will choose to die to their old self-exalting and self-seeking way of life so they may begin to pray the effective prayer of faith that accomplishes the greater works of their Master, can depend on Him to hear their prayers. He always grants the requests of those who have His mind and are living for His interests.

Whoever is “faithful over a few things, I will make…ruler over many things.” (Matt. 25:21) With the amount of grace you have already received, give yourself to the work of your Master! If you will be faithful in the little things, you can count on Him to begin leading you into His greater works. As you surrender fully to serve God, you will feel that this great promise of answered prayer is exactly what you need for accomplishing your appointed tasks.

Believers in Jesus! You have been called to do the work of God. The Son is now sitting at the right hand of the Father where He possesses all power and authority. And He wants to share His dominion with you for the purpose of furthering His Kingdom-life in this world. We now ask you, are you going to respond to His conditions so you may enter into this glorious privilege? These are His words: “If you abide in Me…you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.” Do you truly believe in Jesus? If you do, become a true disciple of His. For the sake of this dying world, fully abandon yourselves to God so you may become an instrument of this glorious work of the Lord.

Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.” (John 8:31)

Friday, August 12, 2011

...and God Wipes Away our Tears

We are instructed in Acts 14:22b “…that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God”.

Growing up in the Lord can be so very painful at times. But recently the Lord showed me some wonderful promises for us as we go through this process in the book of Revelation. Traditions of men had taught me that the book of Revelation was all about future events, but when the Lord showed me this was not true, it opened up the book to me like never before; not just seeing things to come, but to also see things the Lord was doing in us now as well.

One such passage is found in Revelation 7:13-17 “And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they?

“And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. (15)Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. (16)They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.(17)For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”

What a beautiful picture of the Lord’s love for us and what His nature in us will do, we don’t have to wait until some future time to find the fountains of living waters, or for God to wipe away our tears; this is for us now as we go through and come out victorious through our trials and great tribulations!

We are required of the Lord to pick up our cross and follow Him. We must die to our old self which is our old nature so it can be replaced with His glorious nature. This is a painful process, but the Lord CARES for us through all our trials. When we go through these rough times, whether it is physical challenges, financial needs or suffer mistreatment by others, the Lord uses it to expose to us our heart and our old nature.

We may be able to outwardly control our anger or hide hurt feelings; we can cover up our disappointment or the “I didn’t deserve this” attitude, but it takes the Lord to remove the old nature that produces these emotions. When these responses to the trials well up within us, if we would turn to the Lord and place them at His feet, turn away from them, knowing that they came from our old nature and ask Him to take them away from us and replace them with His nature, He will begin to do this wonderful work in us.

No matter how many times we fail, if we continue to submit to Him in faith, we will find, little by little, these old reactions are dying out in us and an indescribable peace and joy will begin to well up in us like rivers of living water just as Jesus said, “He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water”. (John 7:38) and “But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life”. (John 4:14)

As we die to self, the “heat” of these battles will not have the same effect on us as they did before, His nature will begin to change all that. We will not “hunger” or “thirst” for the ways of the world to satisfy us as they did before. As the old nature is dying, it will not be as easy for it to produce hurt feelings, anger or any other “fruit” of self. The fruit of the Spirit will become more and more evident in us as the Lord becomes the substance of our life.

This is confirmed in Revelation 7:16-17. (16)”They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.(17)For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”

How sweet to know that God wipes away our tears, he knows our trials and our pain and He cares!