STUDIES FROM BRETHREN IN CHRIST

For Those That Search To Know God ...

DATE SUBJECT
1/6/2008 DO YOU AGREE WITH THE TEN COMMANDMENTS?
1/13/2008 THREE SACRIFICES
1/20/2008 REDEEMING THE TIME
1/27/2008 NEW CREATURE
1/27/2008 COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS
2/3/2008 BE YE HOLY
2/10/2008 SOMEDAY I'LL BE THE CHRISTIAN I SHOULD BE
2/17/2008 JUSTIFICATION
2/17/2008 IF GOD WANTS IT, WHO CAN STAND AGAINST HIM?
2/24/2008 WHY AM I A MEMBER OF THE CHURCH OF CHRIST?
2/24/2008 LET GOD LEAD YOU
3/9/2008 OWN YOUR OWN FAITH
3/16/2008 THE KINGDOM OF CHRIST
3/23/2008 THINGS MORE IMPORTANT THAN JESUS?
3/23/2008 THREE THINGS LOST
3/30/2008 WHAT GOD WANTS US TO PUT ON
3/30/2008 WHERE TWO OR MORE GATHER IN MY NAME
4/6/2008 FEAST ON GOD
4/20/2008 PURE RELIGION
4/27/2008 BIBLICAL PRINCIPLES FOR SUCCESS
5/4/2008 SUPPOSING GODLINESS IS GAIN
5/18/2008 WHAT IS YOUR CHOICE
5/18/2008 GODíS PURPOSE, EARTHíS PURPOSE, OUR PURPOSE
5/25/2008 GOD KNOWS WHAT TO DO WITH SODOM
5/25/2008 THE OFFENCE AND THE GIFT
6/1/2008 FAITHFULNESS
6/1/2008 COMMITTING TO CHRIST
6/15/2008 PRECIOUS THINGS
6/22/2008 KNOW THYSELF
6/22/2008 RESPECT FOR GOD
6/23/2008 DILIGENTLY SEEKING GOD
7/20/2008 LESSONS LEARNED FROM CAIN
7/27/2008 SEIZE UPON FORGIVENESS
7/27/2008 HEAL THE BROKENHEARTED
8/10/2008 CHRISTIAN RESPONSIBILITIES
8/17/2008 FELLOWSHIP WE SHOULD HAVE
9/14/2008 CHECKLIST IN LIFE
9/21/2008 DO YOU STAND WITH THE POWER OF GOD?
9/22/2008 HOW MEN REPENT
9/23/2008 THE DEVIL REVEALED
9/24/2008 THE GREATEST DAY
10/5/2008 PAINLESS REPENTANCE?
10/12/2008 LOVE NOT THE WORLD
10/19/2008 GRACE AND FAITH
10/19/2008 IS OUR BEST GOOD ENOUGH?
10/26/2008 NOT REMEMBER JESUS?
10/26/2008 GOD IS IN CONTROL
11/3/2008 TO NOT DIVORCE; BATTLE OF THE SEXES
11/4/2008 SUCCESSFUL CIVILIZATION
11/5/2008 FAMILY IS HOME FOR ALL
11/6/2008 HUMANITY: CURSE OR BLESSING?
11/7/2008 THE GOOD NEWS
11/16/2008 THE REMEDIAL SYSTEM
11/23/2008 OUR BODIES AS A TEMPLE OF GOD
11/23/2008 THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE
12/7/2008 IN CHRIST WE SERVE
12/21/2008 PLANTED IN GOD?
12/21/2008 THE LORD IS COMING
12/28/2008 WHEN CHRIST WAS CRUCIFIED

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1/6/2008 ~ Do You Agree With the
                   Ten Commandments?



And God spoke all these words, saying: "I am the LORD your God, ...
~ Exodus 20:1-17


Do you have time to consider these Commandments further?

"So He declared to you His covenant which He commanded you to perform,
the Ten Commandments; ..." ~ Deuteronomy 4:13


   1.  No Other Gods
   2.  No Graven Image Worshipped
   3.  Not Take the Name of God in Vain   
   4.  Keep the Sabbath
   5.  Honor Father and Mother
   6.  Not Kill
   7.  No Adultery
   8.  Not Steal
   9.  Not Bear False Witness
  10.  Not Covet

Which ones do you agree with?

The Jews had many laws given by God, dietary, health,
marriage, priestly, clothing, etc., in all the details, 613 laws.


"... stone him to death with stones; ..." ~ Deuteronomy 21:18-21
                   └─> Many laws resulted in capital punishment.

... observe to do according to all the law ... ~ Joshua 1:7
They were expected to keep all the law. <─┘                       

... whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point,
he is guilty of all. ... ~ James 2:8-13


These Ten Commandments were part of the old covenant.
The Law was shown pointing out all as falling devotionally short.


... dead to the law through the body of Christ, ... ~ Romans 7:4-7
The ultimate law of God is life-giving. <─┘                       

"... What do I still lack?" ... ~ Matthew 19:16-21
               └─> Do you put things before the righteousness of God?

10. Do not Covet.

... for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 3:4-11
                 └─> God delivered us from a burden we could not bear.

... put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication,
uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, ... ~ Colossians 3:1-11


God has made it clear what He wants us to work on.

9. You shall not bear false witness.
8. You shall not steal.
7. shall not commit adultery.
6. You shall not murder.


... love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. ...
~ Romans 13:8-14


~ His consequences are also clear.

"... all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire
and brimstone, which is the second death." ~ Revelation 21:8


→ He wants us to genuinely pursue self control,
~ along with outward honesty as well as inward.


                     ┌─> Inwardly lusting, including window shopping in oneís own mind.

"... whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed
adultery with her in his heart." ~ Matthew 5:27.28


Adultery has always been one of the greatest sins.

... in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. ... ~ John 8:3-7

Hate makes you guilty of murder.

Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, ... ~ 1st John 3:15

People are hateful and deceptive.
~ If you hate someone, you don't agree with God.


... "Honor your father and mother," ... ~ Ephesians 6:1-3

5. Honor your Father and Mother.

We are asked to honor others.

Do not rebuke an older man, but exhort him as a father, ...
~ 1st Timothy 5:1-2


In just these previous six civil commands,
the world is still in great conflict with God.


The New Testament does not specify to observe the the Sabbath day.

... sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come,
but the substance is of Christ. ~ Colossians 2:11-17


... he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works
as God did from His. ... ~ Hebrews 4:9-11


... "The Son of Man is also Lord of the Sabbath." ... ~ Luke 6:5-11


  Christ is our Sabbath; "Rest"  


So many people want the Sabbath but ignore the other commandments.

4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.

  10   "You shall not covet ... anything that is your neighbor's." ~ Exodus 20:17
... put to death ... covetousness, which is idolatry. ~ Colossians 3:5
9 "You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor." ~ Exodus 20:16
... Do not lie to one another, ... ~ Colossians 3:9
8 "You shall not steal." ~ Exodus 20:15
Let him who stole steal no longer, ... ~ Ephesians 4:28
7 "You shall not commit adultery." ~ Exodus 20:14
... Neither ... adulterers ... will inherit the kingdom of God. ~ 1st Corinthians 6:9-10
6 "You shall not murder." ~ Exodus 20:13
... "You shall not murder," ~ Romans 13:9
5 "Honor your father and your mother, ..." ~ Exodus 20:12
... "Honor your father and mother," ... ~ Ephesians 6:1-3
4 "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy." ~ Exodus 20:8
NO CORRESPONDING PASSAGES
3 "... not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, ..." ~ Exodus 20:7
... do not swear, either by heaven or by earth ... ~ James 5:12
2   "... carved image ... you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. ..." ~ Exodus 20:4-5  
Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen. ~ 1st John 5:21
1 "You shall have no other gods before Me." ~ Exodus 20:3
... turn from these useless things to the living God, ... ~ Acts 14:15

Many understand that cursing with G.D. or J.C. is rampant
among our civilization.

More to the point for the rising faithful,
- donít rubber stamp God and not show respect to His name by overuse.


3. Not Take the Name of God in Vain.

How is it man looks to the tangible for the intangible?

... two calves of gold, and said to the people, "It is too much for you to go
up to Jerusalem. Here are your gods, O Israel, ..."~ 1st Kings 12:26-29

Amazing defiance. <─┘                                

2. No Graven Image Worshipped.

┌─> Adulterous.                                                       
... Solomon did evil in the sight of the Lord, ... ~ 1st Kings 11:1-8
└─> Idolater.                                                          

... worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, ...
~ Romans 1:18-25


1. No Other Gods.

What do you serve?
God wants to be treated as God.


"You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, ... <─┐           
... which is the great commandment in the law?" Jesus said to him, ...
~ Matthew 22:34-40


God wants us more than a check list, 1, 2, 3, ... your heart.
The bottom line is do you agree with God?
                       ↖ ↑ ↗
It is the inside over the outside.
                       ↙ ↓ ↘

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1/13/2008 ~ Three Sacrifices

Ever feel you have not worshipped?
~ As the old covenant went away with itsí sacrifices,
~ many felt loss as to feeling spiritual satisfaction.


The message is worship relates to sacrifice
~ as in offering something to God.


By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice ... ~ Hebrews 11:4

The best one could offer. <─┐ 
'... to make a sweet aroma to the LORD, from the herd or the flock, ...'
~ Numbers 15:3


... I do not delight in the blood of bulls, Or of lambs or goats." ~ Isaiah 1:11
└─> God became fed up with the insincere folly.              

... "Sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings, and offerings for sin
You did not desire, nor had pleasure in them" ... ~ Hebrews 10:1-10


The Jews turned sacrifice to God in to an awaited for barbeque feast.

"God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."
~ John 4:24


~ SPIRIT ~

... a spirit does not have flesh and bones ... ~ Luke 24:39
                                   └─> May not be of the five senses.

Good ďfuzzyĒ feelings do not necessarily indicate proper worship.
We must direct our thoughts to His word and reflect on Jesusí life.


... at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God,
and the prisoners were listening ... ~ Acts 16:24-25

Not confined to the assembly. <─┘                               

Do you only WORSHIP on Sunday?  
   P
I
R
I
T
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. ~ Hebrews 13:8

God is not a changeable idol.
What we worship through Jesus is what is right.
● Worship is not exclusively a ritual.
       └─> It involves acts of thanksgiving from the heart.

Sacrifice In Jesus

Many prefer substitutes or lies over the Ďonceí delivered truth.


... it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which
have not profited those who have been occupied with them. ~ Hebrews 13:9

└─> Does not please God.                                  

God is the author of the perfect plan not man.

Sin offering must be outside and far from the temple. <─┐                 
'... offer to the LORD for his sin which he has sinned a young bull
without blemish as a sin offering.' ... ~ Leviticus 4:1-3


... Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood,
suffered outside the gate. ~ Hebrews 13:10-12


~ JESUS ~
This ultimate sacrifice will have nothing to do with Jewish tradition.
                          It is two different covenants. <─┘

Precedence over the past.

  1.  They wanted Moses over Jesus.
  2.  It meant that they did not have a physical priest.   
  3.  They did not have a physical temple building.

... given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God
for a sweet-smelling aroma. ~ Ephesians 5:2


~ The sinless sacrifice sacrificed outside the city. ~
Christ is our Alter at Golgotha.


Sacrifice of Promise

... continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, ... ~ Hebrews 13:13-15
            └─> We need to offer praise.
                                ↑ ↑ ↑
~ Because it pleases God as it is His instruction.
You need to do what God wants.


But do not forget to do good and to share,
for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. ~ Hebrews 13:16

↓ ↓ ↓                                       
Sacrifice of Doing Good and Sharing.

Jews had to confront:
           ● Not going to the temple.
           ● Not bringing an animal.
                                                                                          \   |   /
We now all have the opportunity to sacrifice to God endlessly.
                                        \   |   /                                       /   |   \
~ It is Godís gift to us. ~

We need to consider these sacrifices.

  1.  Sacrifices of the Jews.   
  2.  Sacrifice of Jesus.
  3.  Our Sacrifices.

... present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service. ~ Romans 12:1


... offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
~ 1st Peter 2:4-5


... if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart
that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. ~ Romans 10:9


To follow Jesus is to follow life over death.

1. God made a plan.
2. Jesus executed the plan.
3. Holy Spirit revealed it.

Stand Victorious IN Christ.

I will offer to You the sacrifice of thanksgiving,
And will call upon the name of the LORD. ~ Psalm 116:17


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1/20/2008 ~ Redeeming The Time


... Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time. ...
~ Colossians 4:1-6


We are ALL living on borrowed TIME.

... do not worry, saying, What shall we eat? or What shall we drink?
or What shall we wear? ... ~ Matthew 6:25-34

                  
The aspiration to get only more for yourself is what the shallow seek.
~ We are called to a higher mindset.


Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor,
working with his hands what is good, ... ~ Ephesians 4:28


The compulsive desire for things curtails ones righteousness.

... How long will you slumber, O sluggard? When will you rise from your sleep?
~ Proverbs 6:6-9


The message is to use time to benefit Godís will and not sinfulness.

Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth,
Before the difficult days come, ... ~ Ecclesiastes 12:1


No one wants to get old but it comes to all if you live long enough.
~ As you stand before God, what will your life show?


... not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor
that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. ~ James 4:13-16


Donít think you have tomorrow to repair mistakes if sin is your leisure.

Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.
~ James 4:17


Redeeming the time means today is your last day, and we are all behind.
Prepare as death stands at a hands moment notice.

... give your bondservants what is just and fair, ... ~ Colossians 4:1
└─> Be honest.                                                                     
                         THE TIME IS NOW.
┌─> Pray today.                                                                    

Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving; ...
~ Colossians 4:2


... that God would open to us a door for the word, ... ~ Colossians 4:3
└─> The gospel will only be available to us for a short time.              

Do you talk about Christ with others?


┌─> Now is the time.                                                               
... Walk with wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time.
~ Colossians 4:4-5


┌─> Speak kindly to all.                                                            
Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, ...
~ Colossians 4:6


... the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. ... ~ James 3:5-10

The tongue is like a wicked wildfire ready to torch those closest.

Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth,
but what is good for necessary edification, ... ~ Ephesians 4:29-32


God has given His instructions.
~ We only have so much time.

Today is the day.

"... Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is."
~ Mark 13:31-33


... Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.
~ 2nd Corinthians 6:1-2


... Be ready in season and out of season. ... For the time will come
when they will not endure sound doctrine, ... ~ 2nd Timothy 4:2-5


... how they told you that there would be mockers in the last time
who would walk according to their own ungodly lusts. ~ Jude 1:17-18


One needs to search scripture for individual soul salvation.

... See that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,
redeeming the time, because the days are evil. ... ~ Ephesians 5:14-21


... humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you
in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares ... ~ 1st Peter 5:5-7


... he who does not love his brother whom he has seen,
how can he love God whom he has not seen? ... ~ 1st John 4:19-21


Any hate in ones heart is a waste of time.
    └─> To bitterly destroy.                     |
                     Not redeeming the time. <─┘


'You shall not hate your brother in your heart. ...' ~ Leviticus 19:17

Hate neutralizes the self.

"No one can serve two masters; ..." ~ Matthew 6:24

... brethren, ... Hebrews 2:11 <─┐      
To hate or to love, Christ is our brother and more.
 ... children of God ... Romans 8:16-17 <─┘                 

... why do you show contempt for your brother? ~ Romans 14:10

God simply has asked us to care for one another.

"But he who sins against me wrongs his own soul;
All those who hate me love death." ~ Proverbs 8:36


NOW
TODAY IS THE TIME
NOW

To Love God or Not To Love God?

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1/27/2008 ~ New Creature


What do you find in Jesus? Salvation, hope?

... if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 5:17-19


~ It should be a new creature.

... the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which
are seen were not made of things which are visible. ~ Hebrews 11:3

└─> God made from that which is not seen. 
                   ↑
                   Truth
God created for CREATIONS sake.
The idea of creation is that God had nothing to build with.
All that is is of God.

FOR WE THAT ARE ALIVE:
Dead = Nothing

         Without spirit, the body is dead. <─┐

For as the body without the spirit is dead,
so faith without works is dead also. ~ James 2:26


... God the Lord, Who created the heavens and stretched them out, Who
spread forth the earth and that which comes from it, ... ~ Isaiah 42:5-7


God is the source of all.

... I have made the earth, And created man on it.
I - My hands - stretched out the heavens, ... ~ Isaiah 45:8-18


The Jews failed God and had become spiritually dead,
so, He let them go to recreate them, that they would follow Him.
God had a plan to show us how to come out of darkness.


... "The LORD did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were
more ... for you were the least of all peoples; ..." ~ Deuteronomy 7:7


CAUSE FOR UNHAPPINESS:
Spiritual Failure = Lost

The Jews disregarded Jeremiah for problems they would not address.

... After seventy years are completed at Babylon, I will visit you
and perform My good word toward you, ... ~ Jeremiah 29:8-10


Fact: God can take nothing and make everything.

1. Heart set in Sin = we were nothing, in darkness with no hope; Dead.

Need for creation, death of the old self.
                  Heart set in sin. <─┘


... unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter
the kingdom of God. ... ~ John 3:3-7


... be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man
which was created according to God, ... ~ Ephesians 4:17-24


... just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father,
even so we also should walk in newness of life. ~ Romans 6:4


... knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him,
that the body of sin might be done away with, ... ~ Romans 6:5-6


... put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge
according to the image of Him who created him, ... ~ Colossians 3:9-11


... He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves,
but for Him who died for them and rose again. ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:14-15


2. Must recognize the value and worth of another man's soul.               
Attitude for all.                                                                              


... from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh. ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 5:16


                                                            ┌─> Have fellowship.
... Become complete. Be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and
the God of love and peace will be with you. ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 13:11-14


I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, ... ~ Philippians 1:3-6
                                         
3. By seeing Godís work in progress all around, you will draw closer     
to others and to Him in thankful praise.                                        


Any good you do, give it back to the rightful owner Ė God.

Creation took place because of God.


SEQUENCE IN LIFE OF SALVATION:
1. Heart set in Sin
2. Positive attitude toward others
3. Praise God for all goodness

We are new creatures in Christ.

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1/27/2008 ~ Count your Blessings


Focus more on the positive than the negative.
Glass is half FULL OVE  
rather than half EMPTY.
                       DESPAIR

... I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder ... ~ 2nd Peter 3:1
It's good to hear it again. <─┘ 

┌─> They forgot their cryís for mercy.                     
"... you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly
with hunger." ~ Exodus 16:3

                          └─> Only looked at the immediate.

Be glad in the LORD and rejoice, you righteous; ... ~ Psalm 32:11

... the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering,
kindness, goodness, faithfulness, ... ~ Galatians 5:22


BE:
THANKFUL

1. LIFE & THE PHYSICAL WORLD

"Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? ..." ~ Job 38:4-5

"Have you entered the treasury of snow,
Or have you seen the treasury of hail, ..." ~ Job 38:22


Can you bind the cluster of the Pleiades, Or loose the belt of Orion? ...
~ Job 38:31-33


will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works, ... ~ Psalm 139:14


        All enjoy His blessings. <─┐
"... for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good,
and sends rain on the just and on the unjust." ~ Matthew 5:45


2. FAMILY                                       

... children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward.
... ~ Psalm 127:3-5


Nothing gives like the pure innocent laughter of a giggling child.

Children's children are the crown of old men, ... ~ Proverbs 17:6

3. WIFE                                           

He who finds a wife finds a good thing, And obtains favor from the LORD.
~ Proverbs 18:22


Live joyfully with the wife whom you love all the days of your vain life ...
~ Ecclesiastes 9:9


4. CHURCH Ė SPIRITUAL FAMILY

... love one another fervently with a pure heart. ~ 1st Peter 1:22
└─> To stay happy in life.                         

Indeed we count them blessed who endure. ... ~ James 5:11

5. GODíS WORD                            

Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path. ~ Psalm 119:105

... born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through
the word of God which lives and abides forever, ... ~ 1st Peter 1:23

└─> Without the Bible we would not have the church.                         

6. MERCIFUL & LOVING GOD       

Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; Yes, our God is merciful. ~ Psalm 116:5

... a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, ...
~ Hebrews 2:17


Where would we be without mercy?
No hope, no brethren, trapped in sin.
↙                    ↓                    ↘

... strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope
and without God in the world. ~ Ephesians 2:11-12


Beauty was and is a gift from God.
To show thanks is to show and to do service to God.


He has made everything beautiful in its time. ... ~ Ecclesiastes 3:11

THANKFUL & FAITHFUL FOR YOUR HOPE

To grasp Hope or to Not hold Hope?

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2/3/2008 ~ Be Ye Holy


BE HOLY

... at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming
yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called
you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, ... ~ 1st Peter 1:1-21

When you STAND with God you stand in a safe place.

... if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you are blessed. ...
~ 1st Peter 3:13-14


We wonít be able to defend ourselves if we are blatantly guilty.

... it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good
than for doing evil. ~ 1st Peter 3:15-17

                                  └─> ~ Bad people do get punished.

... because it is written, "Be holy, for I am holy." ~ 1st Peter 1:15-16
    └─> Be like the Father.

Make all of your decisions for the Glory of the Father.


... You shall therefore be holy, for I am holy. ~ Leviticus 11:44-45

... distinguish between the unclean and the clean, ... ~ Leviticus 11:46-47

How do you become Holy on a daily basis?
◎ Avoid darkness and put on the light.


Uncleanness = Unholiness

... although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful,
but became futile in their thoughts, ... ~ Romans 1:20-27


DARKNESSS
Sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness;
Full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; Whisperers, backbiters, ...
┌─> Sins of the heart.                                                       
... those who practice such things are deserving of death, ... ~ Romans 1:28-32
└─> Unclean.         
... Haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to
parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful.
                                 ┌─> Unclean practices among us separate us from God.
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? ...
~ 1st Corinthians 6:9-10

Fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites,
nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners.
Ü        
... you were brought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body
and in your spirit, which are God's. ~ 1st Corinthians 6:18-20


Gossip or dirty thoughts separate us from God.
Fellowship with evil separates you from God.
If youíre not excited about being with God now,
when it comes time, it will be too late.


"... For by your words you will be justified, and by your words
you will be condemned." ~ Matthew 12:33-37


Careful what you say -
~ gossiping, lying, cursing, malice,
Do you want to be separated from God?
Turn from evil to remain Holy


Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.
~ 1st Thessalonians 5:21-22


Own your own faith.                                          
└─> Build on your own faith.
└─> Read scripture.           
              └─> Look to the promise through Christ.
                                                 └─> Heir of the grace of God.
                                                             └─> Now a child of God.
                                                                      └─> Believe God.
                                                                                       └─> Repent of sins.

    ┌─> We must direct our hearts.
... hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and
quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. ~ 1st Peter 3:3-4

                                                       \   |   /
Control your heart, thoughts, for the glory of God.
Would you turn your heart to the world over God?


"... You cannot serve God and mammon." ~ Matthew 6:24

Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you, ... ~ James 4:7-10


Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved,
he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised ~ James 1:12

                                                       /   |   \

Consequence of rejecting God:                                 


     Defeat = Death = Victory for SATAN     
                                                
       

                                    ┌─> Spiritual conduct of men.  
I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands,
without wrath and doubting; ... ~ 1st Timothy 2:8-10


Be careful where you go in honesty.
Going to a bar or viewing pornography puts one closer to the world.
● Stay away from darkness where it is not holy ○


... providing honorable things, not only in the sight of the Lord,
but also in the sight of men. ~ 2nd Corinthians 8:20-21


... Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. ... ~ Romans 12:17-21

"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works
and glorify your Father in heaven." ~ Matthew 5:16


Stand with God.

"Be holy, for I am holy."

... let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit,
perfecting holiness in the fear of God. ~ 2nd Corinthians 7:1


... present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service. ~ Romans 12:1


... slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end,
everlasting life. ... ~ Romans 6:15-23


Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which
no one will see the Lord: ... ~ Hebrews 12:14-15


To be holy or not to be holy?


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2/10/2008 ~ Someday I'll Be the Christian I Should Be


... walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, ... ~ Ephesians 4:1-3

HOW?
   Lowliness and Gentleness
   With Longsuffering -
      Bearing with One Another in Love   
   Endeavoring to Keep the Unity of
      the Spirit in the Bond of Peace

We will be working together, committed to each other through Him.

... you were called in one hope of your calling; ... ~ Ephesians 4:4-6

WITH WHAT?
  One Body
  One Spirit
  One Hope of Your Calling
  One Lord
  One Faith
  One Baptism
  One God and Father of All   

Christians need to pool together with individual action.

"Be angry, and do not sin": do not let the sun go down on your wrath,
nor give place to the devil. ~ Ephesians 4:26-27


Let us remain angry at Satanís plan to divide us into destruction.

Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you ...
~ 1st Timothy 4:14-16


                            Jesus descended before being exalted. <─┐
... each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ's gift.
... ~ Ephesians 4:7-10


One Spirit decends upon all.

There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. ...
~ 1st Corinthians 12:4-13


┌─> Jesus Christ.               
And He Himself gave ... ~ Ephesians 4:11-13
└─> Gifts.

... having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets,
Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, ... ~ Ephesians 2:20-22


Each one of us is being individually built Now.
~ Waiting to be a Christian is an excuse to ignore accountability to God.

God gives opportunities for all those that have lived and that are alive.
Choices of repentance and determination to know Him lay before us all.


◑ Jesus in the flesh has finished His work; given to us already. ◐
Are you built on Christ or constructions of man?


CLICK FOR SCRIPTURE:
                 Today
                  
  Christ and Apostles
                  
                 Prophets  

But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits ...
~ 1st Corinthians 15:20


The prophets, Jesus, and the apostles, the foundation is already in place.

Evangelist = Heralder of the Word

... Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince,
rebuke, exhort, with longsuffering and teaching. ... ~ 2nd Timothy 4:1-5


Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, ...
~ 1st Timothy 4:16


Each of us is on a path of rising and falling, of spirit and flesh.

... some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists,
and some pastors and teachers, ... ~ Ephesians 4:11


... not by comulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; ...
~ 1st Peter 5:1-4


... not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to wine, not violent, not
greedy for money, but hospitable, a lover of what is good, ... ~ Titus 1:5-9


... things that you have heard from me ... commit these to faithful men
who will be able to teach others also. ~ 2nd Timothy 2:2


... let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive
a stricter judgment. ... ~ James 3:1-2


Teaching = Gift

~ It is to Help others understand the word of God.

... for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry,
for the edifying of the body of Christ, ... ~ Ephesians 4:12


We all need to do the work of God today.
↙                                           
... till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge
of the Son of God, to a perfect man, ... ~ Ephesians 4:13

  
We will never be good enough but we reach to His word
to unite in action with Christ Now. This is completion.


But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship
with one another, ... ~ 1st John 1:7-9


... My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart,
does not forgive his brother ... ~ Matthew 18:21-35

                      └─> God commands that we follow the example of Jesus.

Follow Christ = Obey = Commitment to Grow

Everything we need has already been given.
                Build on what is already here. <─┘


┌─> We must heed God's warning.                                                             
... carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men,
in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, ... ~ Ephesians 4:13-14


Do not follow man least deception lead you away.

... but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him
who is the head - Christ - ... ~ Ephesians 4:15


Become and stay mature.
                                          └─> Rooted in Christ.
We grow up in Christ in using what God has given us.
Are you building yourself?


... every part does its share, causes growth of the body
for the edifying of itself in love. ~ Ephesians 4:16


Togetherness is what we are built for.
└─> Love each other.
                  └─> Look to the cross.
                                                     └─> Give Jesus the authority.


Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who
does not condemn himself in what he approves. ... ~ Romans 14:22-23


Repent of your ways if it is wrong and goes against Godís given word.

We are all part of one another.

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2/17/2008 ~ Justification


... both Jews and Greeks that they are all under sin. ... ~ Romans 3:9-18

We need to know what makes us sinners.

              ┌─> Thankful not like him?
"... everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and
he who humbles himself will be exalted." ~ Luke 18:9-14

└─> Which one was justified?                 

It starts with an admission of being an unworthy sinner.
Do you look for one worse to justify self?


"... Would you condemn Me that you may be justified?" ~ Job 40:8


  JUSTIFIED = RIGHT WITH GOD  
                           └─> Free of Guilt

It is about being right with God.

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 5:10-11


... at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, ... ~ Philippians 2:9-11

It is inescapable that all will stand, kneel, before Him.
We will be judged by our own merits,
~ not in relation to any other but to ourselves.


... by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight,
for by the law is knowledge of sin. ~ Romans 3:19-20

└─> The Jews stood unjustified.     

... a man is not justified by the works of the law
but by faith in Jesus Christ, ... ~ Galatians 2:15-20


... no one is justified by the law in the sight of God is evident,
for "the just shall live by faith." ... ~ Galatians 3:11-14


... But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, ...
~ Romans 3:21-24


... law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. ~ Galatians 3:24-25


For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, ...
~ Romans 15:4


... Now all these things happened to them as examples,
and they were written for our admonition, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 10:6-15


The law showed us all sinners needing a savior from ourselves.

┌─> No exceptions, all have sinned.                                                         
... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, ... ~ Romans 3:23

All should be humbled requiring the gospel.

For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, ... ~ Romans 15:3
                     └─> Is it to please God or self?

Are you unremorseful for your wrongs?
~ Each of us has sin to be removed and Jesus took the beating
so that we might find release from sin through Him.


... And the reproaches of those who reproach You have fallen on me.
~ Psalm 69:9


Even David needed the savior.
          └─> Wasnít good enough.


... that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
~ Romans 3:23-26


Justified Before God = Just As if I Never Sinned

At some point, all of us are ashamed of our conduct
which leaves us not justified.


... Blessed is the man to whom the LORD shall not impute sin." ~ Romans 4:7-8

... those who practice such things are deserving of death, ... ~ Romans 1:32
            We all deserve to go to hell. <─┘

Yet Christ died for all with His blood.


But God demonstrates His own love toward us,
in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. ~ Romans 5:8


... not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless
conduct received by tradition from your fathers, ... ~ 1st Peter 1:18-19


His blood paid for our justification.
Die unto the flesh and justified to life

                                                              Life beyond death. <─┐

... who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised
because of our justification. ~ Romans 4:25


Jesus came to show us the way.

... through one Man's righteous act the free gift came to all men,
resulting in justification of life. ~ Romans 5:18


... He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, ... ~ 1st John 2:1-2

It is imperative that each one of us avidly pursue the will of Jesus.

... For by your words you will be justified, and by your words
you will be condemned." ~ Matthew 12:36-37


... "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent."
~ John 6:29


Committing to your belief is a work.
God did and does not just love us casually
and expects more of us than less.

Would you listen to mans whims, yourself, over God?
Continual earnest prayer to Him opens oneís heart.


Do you see that faith was working together with his works,
and by works faith was made perfect? ~ James 2:22


You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.
~ James 2:24


One will not find justification with:
  ●   I've been good
  ●   I'm better than others
  ●   My religion is better

Only through Jesus in righteousness can one find justification.

... having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according
to the hope of eternal life. ~ Titus 3:4-7


... there is one God who will justify the circumcised by faith
and the uncircumcised through faith. ... ~ Romans 3:27-31


All must go through Christ.
His grace is not a license to sin.
We are asked to serve with faith.
Justified by His blood.


\   |   /
BELIEVE
Sin opposes God.

Love Him.


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2/17/2008           ~ If God Wants It,
                            Who Will Stand Against Him?



    ┌─> Holy Spirit endeared the Apostles with these.
... whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues,
they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
~ 1st Corinthians 13:8


Some think these things:
  ● Prophecies
  ● Tongues
  ● Special Enabling Knowledge  
... still exist.

They were manifest to bring us to know true love.

    These three were the ultimate focus. <─┐

And now abide faith, hope, love, these three;
but the greatest of these is love. ~ 1st Corinthians 13:13

                                 └─> Love will never fail.

Gifts = Charisma

┌─> Peter awoke.                                                                                  
... "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ
for the remission of sins; ..." ~ Acts 2:38


Concerning these special gifts, who would get them?
                                └─> All that were touched.


... But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing
to each one individually as He wills. ~ 1st Corinthians 12:11

                                             └─> It is depending on the Spirit's will.

... love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely,
does not seek its own, is not provoked, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 13:4-7

└─> The message is away from self.

It is an empting of the self for the love of God.
It places a greater value on inner truth over that of outer image.

Tongues were not permanent but an avenue to achieve true peace
through heartfelt thought - of what should be simple for all.


... tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; ...
~ 1st Corinthians 14:21-22


Infancy State
of Christianity
= Miracles, Tongues, Prophesies,
Supernatural Knowledge

For we know in part and we prophesy in part. ~ 1st Corinthians 13:9
                        └─> Signs were shown to the children of the initial church.

But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part
will be done away. ... ~ 1st Corinthians 13:10-12


The fully grown perfect word has now been delivered to us.
THE BIBLE

                                                                A change in law took place. <─┐

... priesthood being changed, of necessity there is also a change of the law.
... ~ Hebrews 7:11-14


The Jews tried to stop it.

God is the one who orchestrates His plan, not man.

"... the Son of Man is also Lord of the Sabbath." ~ Mark 2:23-28
            └─> The Son of Man can do anything He wants.

The law sets mercy over pride.


┌─> One point, fail in all.          
... stumble in one point, he is guilty of all. ~ James 2:10

Jesus did not change or bend the rules;
He fulfilled the law, completed it, and ended it.
He came to wake us all to Godís own truth.


                                                 The message is not about self but about God. <─┐
... being ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own
righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. ~ Romans 10:3


"... I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. ..." ~ Matthew 5:17-18

God did not change His will for His Son.
There are no exceptions, - Godís will, His truth, remains.
He came that we could see.


... contend earestly for the faith which was once for all delivered ...
~ Jude 1:3-4


God does not change His plans.

... present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, ...
~ Romans 12:1


All days are holy; we should at all times be for God.

"He who is not with Me is against Me, ..." ~ Matthew 12:30

                                                                                  ┌─> Unbelieving babies.
Man tries to change Godís plan, such as baptizing unrepenting babies.


"He who believes and is baptized will be saved; ..." ~ Mark 16:16

... present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be
ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. ... ~ 2nd Timothy 2:15


It is through the scriptures that we find God.

... remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach everywhere in every church.
~ 1st Corinthians 4:17


God has told us His plan and has told us to defend it.

... being many, are one body, so also is Christ. For by one Spirit
we were all baptized into one body ... ~ 1st Corinthians 12:12-13


We are asked to be participants
in what He taught alive as our divine God.


... I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man
and drink His blood, you have no life in you. ... ~ John 6:53-54


God calls us all to live as a part in the living Jesus.

"For He is not the God of the dead but of the living, for all live to Him."
~ Luke 20:38


~ To eat of His life and drink of His word.

... desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow ... ~ 1st Peter 2:1-3

... who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness,
for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, ...
~ Hebrews 5:12-14


PHYSICAL KINGDOM ≠ SPIRITUAL KINGDOM

Is it that we do not have to obey the same law and spirit?
Are your beliefs different from Godís plan?

     ●  Speak not presumptuously.
     ●  Speak the way of God.
     ●  Speak the will of God.
     ●  Speak the righteousness of God.
     ●  Speak by the word of God.

Law of Moses was temporary.
Instrumental music in worship was temporary.
First century gifts were temporary.


"But the word of the Lord endures forever." ... ~ 1st Peter 1:25

The word of God is permanent.

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2/24/2008 ~ Why am I a member of the church of
                  Christ?



Why am I a Christian?
Why am I in Christ?
Why am I in the church of Christ?


It is not because of religion but faith.

And this is the promise that He has promised us - eternal life. ~ 1st John 2:25

JESUS CHRIST = ETERNAL LIFE

1. For the promise of what this world can not offer. 

... things which are seen are temporary,
but the things which are not seen are eternal. ~ 2nd Corinthians 4:17-18


All that miss realizing Christ are miserable in temporary situations.

... having been justified by faith, we have peace with God
through our Lord Jesus Christ, ... ~ Romans 5:1


2. To be free of guilt.                                                 

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I say rejoice! ... ~ Philippians 4:4-5

4. To put trust and control in God.                             

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication,
with thanksgiving, ... ~ Philippians 4:6


5. Not to place emphasis on the frantic world.           

... and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding,
will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:7


   6. In the midst of raging human storms, to have peace.

... He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.
... ~ Matthew 8:24-26


"For where two or three are gathered together in My name,
I am there in the midst of them." ~ Matthew 18:20


Peace among one another.
└─> Into eternity.               


... we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand,
and rejoice in hope ... ~ Romans 5:1-2


7. For the gift of His grace.                                         

In Christ we glorify God.
            └─> Makes God look better.

Sin beats us up and not only makes us look and feel bad
... but defeats God's purpose.
We need to transform ourselves away from sin.


... glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance;
and perseverance, character; and character, hope. ... ~ Romans 5:3-5


For the glory of God we endure.
~ Hard things in life make you good.
Caring with conscience can be hard but produces patience holding hope.


... the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit
who was given to us. ~ Romans 5:5


8. To be loved eternally.                                             

\   ↑   /    
Can you open your HEART and love as Jesus did?
/   |   \    


"... whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life."
~ John 3:14-15


Who would you die for? - For a poor man? - Or a rich man?

WILL WORK
FOR FOOD
  WILL REBUKE
FOR FOOD
 

   

 

A questionable character?         An unemployed preacher?

... Christ died for the ungodly. ... ~ Romans 5:6-7
                 └─> All of us.

... we shall be saved by His life. ... ~ Romans 5:8-11
             └─> We were all the bad people.

... 'God, I thank You that I am not like other men ...' ~ Luke 18:11
An ounce of pride leads to a pound of condemnation. <─┘                             

God wants us saved, an incomparable love.
A love you canít find except through Jesus. <─┘     

9. Because God loves me and sent His Son for me.      

~ I can be redeemed and have fellowship with God.


... if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:17

Christ is the essential core of what God wants us to be.

TO BE RIGHT WITH GOD

TO LOVE GOD MORE THAN MYSELF

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2/24/2008 ~ Let God Lead You


TO BE LED = FOLLOW

... have put Me to the test now these ten times, and have not heeded
My voice, ... ~ Numbers 14:20-23


Because the Jews had lacking faith in the face of Godís own miracles,
... He left them to die in the desert.


... the children of Israel groaned because of the bondage, and they cried out;
and their cry came up to God because of the bondage. ... ~ Exodus 2:23-24


God heard the Jews crying out in Egypt.

"... you have made us abhorrent in the sight of Pharaoh and in the sight
of his servants, to put a sword in their hand to kill us." ~ Exodus 5:21


Still, they did not trust Moses, a servant sent of God.

"... there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die
in the wilderness? ..." ~ Exodus 14:11-12


They complained.

And the people complained against Moses, saying, "What shall we drink?"
~ Exodus 15:24


... and complained again.

... the whole congregation of the children of Israel complained
against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. ... ~ Exodus 16:2-3


They complained of what they did not have.

... "Why is it you have brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us
and our children and our livestock with thirst?" ... ~ Exodus 17:2-6


They complained about what they could not see.

... "Come, make us gods that shall go before us; ..." ~ Exodus 32:1-4

What God had given was not good enough.

... you have wept in the hearing of the LORD, saying, "Who will give us
meat to eat? For it was well with us in Egypt." ... ~ Numbers 11:18


The faithless walked with Moses.

... Why then were you not afraid To speak against My servant Moses?" ...
~ Numbers 12:8-10


To focus only on the world is to die in the world.

┌─> Ready to go into the Promised Land.                                                   
"... Why has the LORD brought us to this land to fall by the sword, that
our wives and children should become victims? ... ~ Numbers 14:1-4


They could not trust God.

┌─> God has had it with the faithless.  
... "How long shall I bear with this evil congregation
who complain against Me? ..." ~ Numbers 14:24-32


Even after deliverance, who would be loyal?

... when a land sins against Me by persistent unfaithfulness,
I will stretch out My hand against it; ... ~ Ezekiel 14:12-14


┌─> Off for captivity in Babylon.                                
... to bring some of the children of Israel and some of the
king's descendants and some of the nobles, ... ~ Daniel 1:3


Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego were men of upright character.

"... we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image
which you have set up." ~ Daniel 3:16-18


Faithful stand no matter for the One true God.
~ This will anger those who choose not to believe.


... and commanded that they heat the furnace seven times more
than it was usually heated. ... ~ Daniel 3:19-21


... "I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not
hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God." ... ~ Daniel 3:22-27


God can deliver us.

┌─> Daniel wants to stay faithful to God.                   
But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself
with the portion of the king's delicacies, ... ~ Daniel 1:8-9


Haughty and jealous men will angrily plot against the faithful.

... and found Daniel praying and making supplication before his God.
~ Daniel 6:10-11


Daniel had to go to the lions den.

... a decree that every man who petitions any god or man within thirty days,
except you, O king, shall be cast into the den of lions?" ... ~ Daniel 6:12-15


The king was distraught over what he was forced to do.

... "Your God, whom you serve continually, He will deliver you." ...
~ Daniel 6:16-23


The faithful will be delivered.
Whether we receive anger or sympathy, our resolve will be tested.
God asks for patience as He is also patient.


... is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish
but that all should come to repentance. ~ 2nd Peter 3:8-9


God will deliver us, His promise.

"... whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life."
~ John 3:16


... dead in your trespasses ..., He has made alive together with Him,
having forgiven you all trespasses, ... ~ Colossians 2:13-15


Just as God delivered the Jews,
He will do the same for the faithful today.


Therefore put to death your members which are on earth: fornication,
uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, ... ~ Colossians 3:5-7


For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness
and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth ... ~ Romans 1:18


God will punish the sinful.
We need to be separate from sin to be saved.


... let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, ...
~ Hebrews 10:19-23


We need to draw near to God.

For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the
truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, ... ~ Hebrews 10:26-29


It is about accountability to God.

  Remain Faithful = Receive the Promise
Turn Away = Receive Punishment  

... humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt
you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
~ 1st Peter 5:6-7


We must allow God's will in leading us over any and all.

"He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. ..."
~ Matthew 10:37-39


"... wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also,
he cannot be my disciple. ..." ~ Luke 14:26-27


Love is to give all above all.
To place all that we are in Him is to allow Him to lead us.
Would you choose to follow the Prince of Peace ...
... or remain a contentious recluse?

Is murmuring and complaining worth more
than entrance into Godís Kingdom?

Not having enough faith to stop complaining and murmuring
delivers only self satisfaction and does not place trust in God.

Hand your problems over to God for guidance.


TO TRUST OR NOT TO TRUST?

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3/9/2008 ~ Own Your Own Faith


... I know whom I have believed ... ~ 2nd Timothy 1:12

We are here to help others own their own faith.
Itís not about the church, it comes from the self;
Church can not validate oneís faith.

 Faith that is in you. <─┐

... I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, ...
~ 2nd Timothy 1:1-5


It can be difficult for one raised in the faith to own your own faith.
Sometimes tradition spawns defiance for the desire of independence.
Donít reject the truth if it is the truth.


... I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you ...
~ 2nd Timothy 1:6-7


Worldliness pulls us away from Godliness.

... the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life ...
~ 1st John 2:16


We all have inherited:
1. Lust of the Flesh
2. Lust of the Eyes
3. Pride of Life

                                     ┌─> On the inside.
... our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 4:16


Church is not about traditions of man, - musical bands, sports courts,
kitchens and meals, entertainment activities, grand facades,
- to the glory of man and not exalting our One Living God.
One must stand against false teachings, practices.


But as for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine: ...
~ Titus 2:1


   Itís not about what men teach but what God has said. <─┐
The clichť ďGive me that old time religionĒ can be
traditionally dangerous in not practicing the will of God.
Itís what God has delivered
You have to think about it for yourself.
Faith can not be piggybacked.
Do you search for Godís calling?


... let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in
himself alone, and not in another. For each one shall bear his own load.
~ Galatians 6:3-5


Because you attend church does not mean you have obtained salvation.
One must know that I have a Lord that does a good work in me.


Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 13:5-6


Examine your own faith:
1) Donít Piggyback off of Others
2) Have Your Own Faith
3) Donít be Satisfied that You Know Enough

If we just come to church to listen or sit with others,
we may not own our own faith.


So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
~ Romans 10:17


It needs to come from yourself, through the word of God.
Faith is something one desiringly thirsts for.


... unless you utter by the tongue words easy to understand,
how will it be known what is spoken? ... ~ 1st Corinthians 14:19


God has made it simple to understand His will through His word.
We need to be equipped to clearly stand with God.


... power of God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, ...
~ 2nd Timothy 1:8-12


We need to work together, no man is an island.

"... kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who wanted to
settle accounts with his servants." ~ Matthew 18:23


As God offers forgiveness, He insists we do the same.
~ Hate and resentment blocks any genuine true relationship with God.


"For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father
will also forgive you. ..." ~ Matthew 6:14-15


... for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen,
how can he love God whom he has not seen? ... ~ 1st John 4:20-21


"... First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift."
~ Matthew 5:23-24


Fix yourself and be thankful, continue in knowing Godís word.

... put His hands on his eyes again and made him look up. ... ~ Mark 8:22-26
    └─> Two stage miracle.

One has to individually want to know God's truth of light for sight.


... "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk
in darkness, but have the light of life." ~ John 8:12


Donít get comfortable thinking you know enough.

Bible Reading = More Come
Bible Study = Less Come

The truth can be fearful but avoiding it does not change it.
Owning your own faith contains personal knowledge
of the power of God through Jesus.


... who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness,
for he is a babe. ... ~ Hebrews 5:12-14


Do not be stuck in a complacent rut, salvation is something you pursue.
One needs to continually grow through self study.
                                              └─> This is owning your own faith.


... lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness
but denying its power. And from such people turn away! ~ 2nd Timothy 3:1-5


Life is a choice:
- to be encased in Godís own word or manís self serving interests.


... led away by various lusts, always learning and never able
to come to the knowledge of the truth. ~ 2nd Timothy 3:6-7


~ Grow like you are a starving infant.

... as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word,
that you may grow thereby, ... ~ 1st Peter 2:1-3


Do you cry out for God?

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3/16/2008 ~ The Kingdom of Christ


"... the kingdom of God is within you." ~ Luke 17:20-21

The kingdom of God is not found in a GRAND physical building.

CHURCH = ASSEMBLY

Power is found in self service to Jesus and those who gather as such.

Jesus has all power and a universal eternal throne.
It is not about power for the self or any finite organization of man.
~ Gangs make there own kingdom.
The God we serve is King over all creation.


"... Do not go after them or follow them." ~ Luke 17:22-23
                                       └─> Donít follow them, follow Me!

                                                 ┌─> The flood came suddenly with power.
"... as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of
the Son of Man: ..." ~ Luke 17:24-29


God has the power.
Take faith in Jesus to ensure your own protection.


"... Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will
provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels?" ~ Matthew 26:52-53


Jesus has Power over:
● Nature
● Disease
● People
● Government
● Death

Do you think religions of the earth have power?

Headquarters of the church?
↓ 
↓ 
↓ 
↓ 
↓ 
↓ 
● Rome
● New York
● Salt Lake
● Jerusalem
● Mecca
● Etc.
 ↓
 ↓
 ↓
 ↓
 ↓
 ↓
↘                       ↙
It is in Heaven!

The Focus is God and not man!
Do not look back to shifting constructions, idolatries of man
... but Now forever forward to Godís reigning kingdom.


"... Remember Lot's wife." ~ Luke 17:30-32

... the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt,
afterward destroyed those who did not believe. ~ Jude 1:5


... "No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back,
is fit for the kingdom of God." ~ Luke 9:57-62


God is all; nothing one physically has can buy you into the Kingdom.

"Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life
will preserve it. ... "~ Luke 17:33-36


A soul is more valuable than all the world.

... "Wherever the body is, there the eagles will be gathered together."
~ Luke 17:37


Those that ignore Godís instructions or warnings are doomed.

"... See! Your house is left to you desolate; ..." ~ Matthew 23:37-38

Jerusalem was destroyed and more than one million people died.

"But he who endures to the end shall be saved. ..." ~ Matthew 24:13-19

... Who will deliver me from this body of death?
I thank God -- through Jesus Christ our Lord! ... ~ Romans 7:15-25


One must lean on Christ and His will.

        ┌─> The loyal stand with God.
"... How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?"
~ Genesis 39:7-9


... But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness,
let it not even be named among you, ... ~ Ephesians 5:1-5


... submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. ~ James 4:7

The Kingdom of God is to serve Godís will.

"... Your will be done." ~ Matthew 26:42

Do you want to be safe eternally?
~ You must stand within for Jesus and His word, both young and old.
It is not about health or wealth for we all succumb.


"... unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." ~ John 3:3-6
└─> To walk in life.            

Itís all about submitting to God over self.
Because Thomas wouldnít believe unless he saw Jesus,
the term "Doubting Thomas" has been derived.


"... see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print
of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe." ~ John 20:24-25


If you read the shortest Gospel, the book of Mark,
and still question or believe in possible errors and or missing parts,
you doubt what has been once delivered, and are a 'Doubting Thomas.'


... the faith which was once for all delivered ... ~ Jude 1:3

... there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ.
... ~ Galatians 1:6-10


Escapist people look more intently for missing books and or new
doctrines while not even searching what has been delivered by God.

Christ did not come for Christianity to be constantly reinvented.
~ If you cannot see the kingdom of God, you do not believe ~


... he who comes to God must believe that He is, ... ~ Hebrews 11:6

... and your coldness or lukewarm attitude will condemn you.
To question or correct God is to exalt yourself.


... because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you ...
~ Revelation 3:15-16


If you can not see the Kingdom of God, you will not be part of it.

... He who does good is of God, but he who does evil has not seen God.
~ 3rd John 1:11


... do these things ... for so an entrance will be supplied to you ... into the
everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. ~ 2nd Peter 1:3-11


Godís Kingdom calls out for all.

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3/23/2008 ~ Things More Important Than Christ?


... "A certain man gave a great supper and invited many, ... ~ Luke 14:15-24

Vivid examples are given by God.
Excuses hurt our Lord in denying His offering.

Can you say you worship God?


... "You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with
all your soul, and with all your mind. ..." ~ Matthew 22:36-40


God wants us all as a Father is to His children.

... who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and
served the creature rather than the Creator, ... ~ Romans 1:23-25


We use what God has given us to make excuses
of why we can not worship Him - who created all.


... Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. ... ~ Matthew 6:9-13

Simply cherish He who has given all with all oneís heart.

"... And his Redeemer, the LORD of hosts: 'I am the First and I am the Last;
Besides Me there is no God. And who can proclaim as I do?'..." ~ Isaiah 44:6-8

└─> Declaration of exclusiveness.                                                  

We need to serve God and not other concerns.


Priorities above God?
  THINGS
  JOBS
  PEOPLE  

... Who would form a god or mold an image That profits him nothing? ...
~ Isaiah 44:9-17


All will know false worship as a waste of time.

... A deceived heart has turned him aside; And he cannot deliver his soul,
Nor say, "Is there not a lie in my right hand?" ~ Isaiah 44:18-20


Serving a lie is foolish.

... put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication,
uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, ... ~ Colossians 3:5


... seek those things which are above, where Christ is, ... ~ Colossians 3:1-2

Rise to the occasion that is your life.

┌─> Do you care for those in hardship? 
... to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep
oneself unspotted from the world. ~ James 1:27


It is not about stuff.

... Let brotherly love continue. Do not forget to entertain strangers, ...
~ Hebrews 13:1-2


... Their idols were on the beasts and on the cattle.
Your carriages were heavily loaded, ... ~ Isaiah 46:1-2


There are those who carry the burdens of false worship.

"... beware of covetousness, for one's life does not consist
in the abundance of the things he possesses." ~ Luke 12:13-15


What one holds materially dear does not necessarily mean one has.

"For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own
soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?" ~ Matthew 16:26


"... So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God."
~ Luke 12:16-21


"... Return to Me, for I have redeemed you." ~ Isaiah 44:21-22

God wants us though we have sinned.

┌─> Are you happy to have been invited?                                     
"... bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind."
~ Luke 14:21


Do you FEAST on the words of Christ?

Perhaps the hardship found in humanity is in that we have forsaken God.
Does your possessions own you or do you own your possessions?
The church of Christ offers forgiveness of sins and eternal life.
Itís not about the distraction of having a good time with others.
~ Itís about putting God first.

            \   |   /
Do not put Christ last.


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3/23/2008 ~ Three Things Lost


┌─> Accused Jesus as an unclean sinner.                    
... "This Man receives sinners and eats with them." ~ Luke 15:1-2
  └─> Judged by association.                                            

Everyone needs the mercy of God.


... longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish
but that all should come to repentance. ~ 2nd Peter 3:9


Redundancy is good in teaching clarity.

So He spoke this parable to them, saying: ... ~ Luke 15:3-10

There is value in finding, returning to, what is lost.
   100 Sheep Loses One
   10 Silver Coins Loses One
   1 Father Loses His One Son   

"... 'How many of my father's hired servants have bread enough
and to spare, and I perish with hunger!' ..." ~ Luke 15:11-17


Excessive indulgence leads to despair.

For if we sin willfully after we have recieved the knowledge of the
truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, ... ~ Hebrews 10:26-27


Discounting consequences does not exempt one from punishment.

... "A dog returns to his own vomit," and, "a sow, having washed,
to her wallowing in the mire." ~ 2nd Peter 2:22


Sin can hold us longer than we want it to.

... Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about
like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. ~ 1st Peter 5:7-8


We need to call God home.

... I am no longer worthy to be called your son.
Make me like one of your hired servants." ' ~ Luke 15:18-19


Submit to God.
True repentance is away from the self.
The self is the source of sin.


... each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires ...
~ James 1:12-14


Your weakness is waiting for you, there in your comfort zone.
~ Work on controlling your desires, what is in you.
Love God more than yourself.


... when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin,
when it is full-grown, brings forth death. ~ James 1:15


'... for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.' ...
~ Luke 15:20-24


The son wanted to be dead to sin; the Father rejoiced.

"... Therefore his father came out and pleaded with him." ~ Luke 15:25-28
                    └─> Father advocates for the younger son.

He cares for each of his children to be at home with him.


" '... right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was
dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.' " ~ Luke 15:29-32


Do not disassociate yourself from the hope of all souls.
                      To be saved. <─┘
The Pharisees and Scribes were self righteous,
jealous, envious, judging others.
~ Denying the love of God.


"... For many are called, but few are chosen." ~ Matthew 22:1-14

God loves us more than ourselves.

God wants us back.

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SERMON MENU SELECTIONS

3/30/2008 ~ What God Wants us to Put On


... do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink;
nor about your body, what you will put on. ... ~ Matthew 6:24-34


Allow your faith to overwhelm your worry.
God wants us to be in the here and Now serving Him.

I do this sermon for three reasons:
         1) For everyone with enough courage to proclaim it before me.
             ~ To be part of the Great Commission commanded by Christ.
2) As a tool to teach myself of what God wants of us.       
3) To preach His word helping others focus on His truths. 

How we look on the inside makes all the difference to God.


                ┌─> How a woman might win her unbelieving husband to Christ.
Do not let your adornment be merely outward ... ~ 1st Peter 3:3-4
     └─> Can be said of men and women alike; souls of God.

We are asked to put off the old man and put on the new man.
... that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man ...
~ Ephesians 4:17-25



Put Off

Put On
Blindness of Heart     Hidden Person of the Heart    
Works of all Uncleanness
with Greediness
Incorruptible Beauty of a
Gentle and Quiet Spirit
    Deceitful Lusts - Old Man     Renewed in the Spirit
of your Mind - New Man
Thorns of Wants                                 Cup of Truth    

There are specific directives concerning the old man verses the new man.
... put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;
bearing with one another, and forgiving ... ~ Colossians 3:8-14



Put Off

Put On
Old Man New Man
Anger Tender Mercies
Wrath Kindness
Malice Humility
Blasphemy Meekness
    Filthy Language     Longsuffering
Lying Bearing With and
    Forgiving One Another    
Past Feeling Love
Anvil of Deceit                     Tree of Life        

Immature Love states that I love you because I need you.
Mature Love states that I love you because I want you.

We need to want God more than needing Him.
Perhaps repeating sins makes us need Him more than
naturally choosing to please Him and in so, wanting Him.


We are asked to put off the body of the sins of the flesh.
... putting off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circumcision
of Christ, buried with Him in baptism, ... ~ Colossians 2:11-12


We are asked to cast off the works of darkness, to put on the armor of light.
... put on the Lord Jesus Christ, ... ~ Romans 13:12-14

The works of the flesh are evident,
Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: ...
~ Galatians 5:19-21


We need the whole armor of light to defend against the darkness.
We are told to rely on the mightiness of our God.
... Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand
against the wiles of the devil. ... ~ Ephesians 6:10-16



Put Off

Put On
Sins of the Flesh Christ
Works of Darkness Armor of Light
    Revelry and Drunkenness     Be Sober - Capable
Lewdness and Lust     Breastplate of Faith and Love    
Strife and Envy Helmet for Hope of Salvation
Adultery and Fornication Truth
Idolatry and Sorcery Breastplate of Righteousness
Heresies Prepare yourself for travel
with the Gospel of Peace
Murders Shield of Faith
Darts of Disgust                                  Egg of Clarity     

God's instructions are clear.

He tells us exactly what he hates.
These six things the LORD hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him: ...
~ Proverbs 6:16-19


He tells us what we should hold as dear.
... add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, ...
~ 2nd Peter 1:5-8


A time is coming for all of us when we must shed our tent,
our corruptible earthen vessel, and put on incorruption in the face of God.
... we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and
this mortal must put on immortality. ... ~ 1st Corinthians 15:51-58



Put Off

Put On
A Proud Look Faith
A Lying Tongue Virtue
    Murderous Hands on the Innocent     Knowledge
A Plotting Wicked Heart Self-control
Swift in Running to Evil Perseverance
Sow Discord Among Brethren     Brotherly Kindness    
False Witness Liar Godliness
Hate Love
Mortality/Death Life
Corruptible Incorruption
Mortal Immortality
              Dust of Death                                Fire of Reality

God is calling to us to choose Him.

... the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he
who does the will of God abides forever. ~ 1st John 2:15-17


It is Christ who is calling us.
"Abide in Me, and I in you. ..." ~ John 15:4

We all have a date with fate.
When the end comes, what will it be that you have put on, off?


... he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.
~ Galatians 6:7-8


We need to hold the righteousness of God's word close.
In the way of righteousness is life, And in its pathway there is no death.
~ Proverbs 12:28


What does Godís righteous word tell us?
We are called to be stregthened with Christ inwardly dwelling in our hearts.
... be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that
Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; ... ~ Ephesians 3:14-19


It is not uncleanness but in holiness we are called to service.
For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness. ...
~ 1st Thessalonians 4:7-8


We are all one in Christ.
For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. ...
~ Galatians 3:27-28


Will you be ready to meet God?

The question is, are you in Christ?


Put Off

Put On
  Old Man (desires of the flesh)     New Man (become like Christ)  
Works of Darkness Armor of Light
Uncleanness Holiness
Your Sins His Baptism
Down                                                 Up  

'And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and
wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.' ~ Acts 22:16


We need to overcome ourselves and put on Christ - the Light.

Thank God He has offered us salvation.

"... He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life."
~ John 8:12


If you have not been baptized for the remission of sins,
you remain in the darkness of your sins hopeless of the promise.
Do you want to live forever and if so, why are you waiting?

Take the Plunge and Stand for God.

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3/30/2008 ~ Where Two or More Gather In My Name


                          ┌─> Best case scenario.
"For where two or three are gathered together in My name,
I am there in the midst of them." ~ Matthew 18:20

     └─> About unity.

Jesus came to solve the diversity of religion.
Jesus established the true way of God Ending religious diversity.
There is no other way to God but through Jesus, Godís rules.
~ One must be established in Christ in our midst.


 We must be humbled by innocent children. <─┐
"... unless you are converted and become as little children, you will
by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. ..." ~ Matthew 18:1-5


PURE, INNOCENT, HUMBLE

God does not want the proud.
God wants us to work together.


                                                    Sin is the stumbling block. <─┐
"... whoever causes one of these little ones who believes in Me to sin, ..."
~ Matthew 18:6-7


Be careful not to cause others to sin.

Be an Example Over the Temptation

... "I am of Paul," or "I am of Apollos," or "I am of Cephas," or "I am of Christ."
Is Christ divided? ... ~ 1st Corinthians 1:11-15


  Some were claiming to be after Paul, Cephas = Division  
Freedom of religion Responsibility God calls for.

"... the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost. ..."
~ Matthew 18:9-14


Attitude is everything.

"... if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault
between you and him alone. ..." ~ Matthew 18:15


Deal with others directly.
Go to people individually.
It is all about direct genuine compassion for each other.
It takes courage and love of God not to gossip or backbite.


... a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual
restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, ... ~ Galatians 6:1


To keep it honest. <─┐ 
"But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, ..." ~ Matthew 18:16
└─> Help is required when encountering an unrepenting sinner.           
└─> From discerning witnesses.                                  

People can be apprehensive searching for peace.

The first one to plead his cause seems right,
Until his neighbor comes and examines him. ~ Proverbs 18:17


God incorporates His solution to be followed.

┌─> Worst case scenario.             
"... if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen ..."
~ Matthew 18:17


~ There will be those that will fall away from Christ.
→ Serving God is to be restored in His word.


"... whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, ..." ~ Matthew 18:18

Commitments between souls have weight in heaven.
We need to agree in His name, not of charismatic men.


"... if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask,
it will be done for them ..." ~ Matthew 18:19


God calls for peace among all His people.
~ For us working together serves God.
Sing together.
        Sorrow together.
             Rejoice together.
            Live together.


He wants us to Love as He values each person.

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4/6/2008 ~ Feast On God


... You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; ...
~ Psalm 23:1-6


Do you find GREAT gain in the Lord's truths?

Now godliness with contentment is great gain. ~ 1st Timothy 6:6

God is fixing us if we submit to Him, Hear Him.

... And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. ~ Isaiah 2:1-3

... And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. ~ Micah 4:1-2

"In that day a fountain shall be opened for the house of David and for the
inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and for uncleanness. ... ~ Zechariah 13:1-2


God planned for Jesusí coming pouring out a fountain of His truths.

Depend on His gifts with patience.
He is a fountain of blessings
If your life is a drought you fail to thank God for all.


Optimist
Pessimist

-
-

Good Morning Lord
Good Lord, Morning


The desires of the world will leave you empty.
One must replace sin with the word of God.
        This is faithfulness. <─┘


When I kept silent, my bones grew old ... ~ Psalm 32:3-4

One must stay charged announcing the gospel truths.

... uphold me by Your generous Spirit. Then I will teach transgressors
Your ways, And sinners shall be converted to You. ~ Psalm 51:12-13


Come back to the Lord for your own salvation.
God can restore you if you fill yourself with Him.

Do you read and pray?
Do you do for others?


  Only about self and complaints = EMPTY  

We must battle for God.

Commit your works to the Lord, And your thoughts will be established. ...
~ Proverbs 16:3-8


We need to plant seeds with the unsure and unbelievers.

Come home to God, itís larger than the earth.

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4/20/2008 ~ Pure Religion


Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this:
to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and ... ~ James 1:27


Are you a Christian because you go to church
~ or because you feel it in your hert?

How does one weed out the falsehoods?
Some people think Christianity is hypocrisy
for those who continue sinning within itsí ranks.
- We need to be victorious for God.


... Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? ...
~ James 4:1-4


Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when has been approved, he
will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised ... ~ James 1:12-14


God asks us to battle with our own sin.
~ People sin because itís fun.


... choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God
than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, ... ~ Hebrews 11:24-26

     └─> Moses chose God over earthly pleasures.

God has to become our greatest joy.
We must pray God our desires give us contentment
over seeking self-satisfaction and fleeting pleasures.


... when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin,
when it is full-grown, brings forth death. ~ James 1:15


... let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us,
and let us run with endurance ... ~ Hebrews 12:1-2

                        └─> Often easier said than done.

Let us not bring shame to our Lord.
We should not let routine sin in our lives
so as to accept it as something normal.


... speaking lies in hypocricy, having their own conscience seared
with a hot iron ... ~ 1st Timothy 4:1-3


... pray. Is there anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. Is anyone
among you sick? Let him call for the elders ... ~ James 5:13-14


Repent.
God has made one boat for salvation.
Those that will not help themselves or ask for it are undeserving.
Don't jump ship.


... reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep. For if we
would judge ourselves, we would not be judged. ~ 1st Corinthians 11:28-31


Many look to outward signs to find their religious value.
Evil spirits and miracles are not here today as in the first century.


A sound heart is life to the body, But envy is rottenness to the bones.
~ Proverbs 14:30


And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. ...
~ James 5:15


Address your sin; call on an elder so you may have fellowship with God.

┌─> One man for God means much.        
... And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain,
and the earth produced its fruit. ~ James 5:16-18


Pray against sin, it works.

Religious Values of the Bible

~ AGAINST ~
?
or
~ FOR ~


?

... and to keep oneself unspotted from the world. ~ James 1:27

God wants us to care about His needs.

... inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren,
you did it to Me. ... ~ Matthew 25:31-46

└─> The litmus test.                    

~ Do you love those I asked you to care for?
Adopt people in need.


... be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. ...
~ James 1:21-24


More than just hearing.

... into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful
hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed ... ~ James 1:25


Do what you read in action.

If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue
but deceives his own heart, this one's religion is useless. ~ James 1:26


Not part of religion or Godís church if you have no self control.

... For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy.
Mercy triumphs over judgment. ~ James 2:10-13


For as the body without the spirit is dead,
so faith without works is dead also. ~ James 2:26


Without mercy, you have no religion.

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4/27/2008 ~ Biblical Principles for Success


   \   |   /
GOD should be at the CENTER of all of our plans.

  O
  W

"... I have come that they may have life,
and that they may have it more abundantly." ~ John 10:10


1. Set a Goal                       

Ask, and it will be given to you, seek, and you will find;
knock, and it will be opened to you. ~ Matthew 7:7


Train yourself to reach your goal.

For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. ... ~ Proverbs 23:7

2. Prioritize Your Tasks     

"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness,
and all these things shall be added to you." ~ Matthew 6:33


3. Have the Right Attitude

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, ...
~ Colossians 3:23-24


4. Do More Than Expected

"And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two." ~ Matthew 5:41

~ We should go the extra mile.

5. Work Diligently             

Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; ... ~ Ecclesiastes 9:10

"I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; ... ~ John 9:4

We must use our talents God gave us.

"For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." ~ Matthew 6:21

Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. ~ Colossians 3:2

... "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes."
~ Mark 9:23


There is no horizon in the endless possibilities of that is God

... reaching forward to those things which are ahead, ... ~ Philippians 3:13-14

... not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as bondservants of Christ, ...
~ Ephesians 6:5-8


Dedication is the suave of salvation.

... believe in the name of the Son of God,
that you may know that you have eternal life, ... ~ 1st John 5:13


Live for God today

... now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.
~ 2nd Corinthians 6:1-2


Path to Success
1. Set a Goal
2. Prioritize Your Tasks
3. Have the Right Attitude
4. Do More Than Expected
5. Work Diligently

As you live, so shall you die.

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5/4/2008 ~ Supposing Godliness is Gain


... of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness
is a means of gain. From such withdraw yourself. ~ 1st Timothy 6:1-5


  CHRISTIAN = GAIN  

NOT
ABOUT
● Free from Contacts/Accountability
● Smarter Ė Religious Pride
● Rich to Enjoy All Pleasures

 THIS

But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness,
godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. ~ 1st Timothy 6:11


... "Ananias, why has Satan filed your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit
and keep back ..." ~ Acts 5:1-11

                    └─> It can look good, but God knows the deepest truth.

          ┌─> One can not buy God to get an upper hand.
... offered them money, saying, "Give me this power also, ... ~ Acts 8:15-19

God is durable and sure, not man.
There will be suffering to have the proper desire.
Itís about thankfully serving God.


... I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. ~ Philippians 4:11-13

One must still abide in the world,
connected to marriage, civil law, and various commitments.
~ Itís about knowing how BRILLIANT God is.


... your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.
~ 1st Corinthians 2:1-5


... whatever God does, It shall be forever. Nothing can be added to it, And
nothing taken from it. God does it, that men should fear before Him.
~ Ecclesiastes 3:14


We should give glory to God over ourselves.
Speech needs to be seasoned with grace, usefulness, helpfulness.
Itís about God, not us.


Now godliness with contentment is great gain. ... ~ 1st Timothy 6:6-11

It will never be right with men, but it can be serving God.

Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life,
to which you were also called ... ~ 1st Timothy 6:12-19


Keep the focus.

... Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and
idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge ...
~ 1st Timothy 6:20-21


The grass is greenest where God has put you. Search no longer.


Plant your roots and grow in the Lord.


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5/18/2008 ~ What is Your Choice?


What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?
~ Romans 6:1


What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace?
Certainly not! ~ Romans 6:15


● 
● 
● 
● 
 FREEDOM   ●
 ●
 ●
 ●

Christianity is not a ticket or license to sin.
Sin is a debt.
All are in need.


... where sin abounded, grace abounded much more, so that as sin reigned
in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life ...
~ Romans 5:18-21


                                            ┌─> Sin keeps beating us.
... If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar,
and His word is not in us. ~ 1st John 1:7-10


... If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness,
we lie and do not practice the truth. ~ 1st John 1:5-6


We need to embrace the light.
We must be victorious to God.


... How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? ~ Romans 6:1-2

Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus
were baptized into His death? ~ Romans 6:3


He put the body to death for us.

... we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ
was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, ... ~ Romans 6:4


If you have not been baptized, you do not touch His death.

... that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be
done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. ~ Romans 6:5-6


We must battle against our own sin.
~ We must not be slaves to sin.


... Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, ...
~ Romans 6:7-9


Jesus died once for all.
We need to work it to remove our sin.
Jesus died so we could put our sins to death.


For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all;
but the life that He lives, He lives to God. ~ Romans 6:10


We need to live to God.

... judgments of the Lord ... by them Your servant is warned,
And in keeping them there is great reward. ~ Psalm 19:7-11


... For the the LORD knows the way of the righteous,
But the way of the ungodly shall perish. ~ Psalm 1:1-6


Godís righteousness is the tree of life.

... do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts.
~ Romans 6:11-12


Sin hurts God.

... he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who
sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. ~ Galatians 6:7-8


God tells us how to sow to the spirit.

... present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your
members as instruments of righteousness to God. ... ~ Romans 6:13-14


What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace?
Certainly not! ~ Romans 6:15


Erasing your sins once does not give one the freedom to continue to sin.

... slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death,
or of obedience leading to righteousness? ~ Romans 6:16


One can be a servant to righteousness over sin.

WHO DO YOU CHOOSE TO SERVE?

... though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart ...
~ Romans 6:17


One chooses to serve God.

And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.
~ Romans 6:18


Serving the righteousness of God sets you free from sin.

... so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness. ...
~ Romans 6:19-20


For this reason many are frightened of Jesus.
Many prefer to be successful at sin.


... things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.
~ Romans 6:21


Would you choose death?

... having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness,
and the end, everlasting life. ... ~ Romans 6:22-23


One must choose to glorify Him.
It is not faith only.
It is an act of service.


Be a servant of God.

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5/18/2008 ~ Godís Purpose, Earthís Purpose,
                   Our Purpose



Showing reverence is not the same as wanting God.
Men often want Godís creation or control of it over Him.

◎         
... One generation passes away, and another generation comes; ...
~ Ecclesiastes 1:1-11


How long life goes on, cycles on the earth will continue to revolve.
Nature moves over the life of man.


"You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power;
For You created all things, ..." ~ Revelation 4:11


~ Created us for His pleasure ~ It serves Him ~

... God will bring every work into judgment, Including every secret thing,
Whether good or evil. ~ Ecclesiastes 12:13-14


Though Joseph was betrayed by his brothers,
he remained loyal to the ways of God.


Then they said to one another, "We are truly guilty concerning our brother,
... ~ Genesis 42:21-23


One can immediately recall the guilt of oneís life when things get bad.

Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth,
Before the difficult days come, ... ~ Ecclesiastes 12:1


PURITY

One needs to hold purity of hert close, to have purity with God.

... of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, ...
~ 1st Peter 1:22-25


Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace
with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. ~ 2nd Timothy 2:22


The fruits of Godís will are clear.

But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle,
willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, ~ James 3:17


Joseph was devout in service as was Cornelius.

DEVOUT

a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, ... ~ Acts 10:2

It's about knowing what needs to be done and doing it.

FOCUS

                               \   |   /
~ Dedicated to God ~
                               /   |   \

DEDICATED

Our purpose is to preserve things that go beyond our mortal lives.
FAITH in those things not seen.


Now faith is the substance of things hoped for; the evidence of things not
seen. For by it the elders obtained a good testimony. ... ~ Hebrews 11:1-3


Our purpose is to establish Godís glory through our actions.
One needs eternal purpose over temporary purpose.


God put us here to serve His purpose.

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5/25/2008 ~ God Knows What to do With Sodom


... there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring
in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord ... ~ 2nd Peter 2:1-11


Evil = Total Disregard of Godís Will

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light,
and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
~ Isaiah 5:20

● ○
God blessed us with the word gay, - a holy word.
Our government now excuses behavior not condoned by God.


... they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; ...
~ 2nd Peter 2:19-22


God does not want politically correct yes men against His word.
Society makes it all too palatable: Partnership, Same-sex marriage,
unions, anti-hate culture, social tolerance.


                                                                              ┌─> This is Godís order.
... a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, ...
~ Genesis 2:18-25


... And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, ...
~ Romans 1:26-28


Against God, nature, and self.

... he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body.
~ 1st Corinthians 6:18


Itís not about coping with what life has dealt but following Godís will.
Would you choose weakness over the strength that
God calls for out of His own special people?


... that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for
Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. ~ Titus 2:11-14


... Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; ...
~ 1st Peter 2:9


~ Itís not gay bashing or homophobia,
Itís about love and sinning against God, nature, and self.


You who love the LORD, hate evil! ... ~ Psalm 97:10

God asks us to hate evil.
There is no love in a violation of Godís order.
Homosexuality is the vile lust of the flesh.
   └─> These people do not know God.


... not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God; ...
~ 1st Thessalonians 4:3-8


... they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in
their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. ... ~ Romans 1:18-25

└─> Digressed unthankfully away from the glory of God.               

... the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that
every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil ... ~ Genesis 6:5


God destroyed the world because of disobedient wicked hearts.

... men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves
the penalty of their error which was due. ... ~ Romans 1:27

          └─> Assumption is communicable diseases are a result of immoral sexual acts.

~ You have abandoned God - Those that disregard God.

... your iniquities have separated you from your God;
And your sins have hidden His face from you, ... ~ Isaiah 59:1-4


... Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction,
making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly; ...
~ 2nd Peter 2:6


Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a reproach to any people.
~ Proverbs 14:34


Sin is an emergency of indulgence.
                                └─> Eternal destruction in the waiting.

Stay with Christ and God will take care of you.
Stand with man and men-pleasers and Godís facts will judge you.


... not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as bondservants of
Christ, doing the will of God from the heart, with goodwill doing service,
as to the Lord, and not to men, ... ~ Ephesians 6:5-8


Sin is an epidemic, a disease that needs addressing.
God is the cure.
~ We sin because we want to.
We need to follow what God approves.


Homosexuality = Unclean Conduct

Any closet sin is troubling, making it lawful does not reverse itsí turmoil.

... Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers,
nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, ... will inherit the kingdom of God.
~ 1st Corinthians 6:9-10


Would you tempt separation from God? Ė This is the kingdom of God.

... you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit
of our God. ~ 1st Corinthians 6:11


Repent, Pray.
One chooses to reach for heaven.


... He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
... ~ John 16:7-11


... when a land sins against Me by persistent unfaithfulness,
I will stretch out My hand against it; ... ~ Ezekiel 14:12-14


Truly, it is unsafe to stand against God snubbing His blessings.

... We ought to obey God rather than men." ~ Acts 5:29

Believe
~ A life that meets Godís wants and not our wants.


Donít follow Sodom.
                 


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5/25/2008 ~ The Offence and the Gift


┌─> Adam was a form of Christ.                              
... through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and
thus death spread to all men, because all sinned ... ~ Romans 5:12-14


The sin of Adam has affected us all.

... the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and
that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil ... ~ Genesis 6:5


┌─> The scope of sin through Godís eyes.      
... They have all turned aside, They have together become corrupt;
There is none who does good, No, not one. ~ Psalms 14:1-3


Godís one offering took care of all the damage.

But the free gift is not like the offense. ... ~ Romans 5:15-21

VERSE
By Adamís Disobedience
By Christís Obedience
Romans 5:15 Many Died
Grace Abounded
Romans 5:16 Condemnation
Justification
Romans 5:17 Death
Life
Romans 5:18 Judgment
Justification of Life
Romans 5:19 Made Sinners
Made Righteous
Romans 5:20 Sin Abounded
Grace More Abounded
Romans 5:21 Sin Reigned
in Death

Grace Reigns
Through Righteousness


The blessings in Christ far outweighs the sin and consequences of Adam.

God offers us a return to Him
out of His Love, Mercy, - by following His instructions home.


For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, ...
~ Titus 2:11-14


Now His promise given before the beginning of time has come.
~ Without Christ, there is no justification.
With such a great gift, will you choose Him?


Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.
~ 1st John 3:4


The soul who sins shall die. ... ~ Ezekiel 18:20

... by the law is knowledge of sin. ~ Romans 3:20

Sin is the cancer of the soul.

... "The first man Adam became a living being."
The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. ~ 1st Corinthians 15:45


LAST ADAM = CHRIST

... in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
~ Revelation 13:8


Jesus promised to save us from the beginning.
Each of us has been given the opportunity to be in the Book of Life.


We are stewards of the Faith in God.

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6/1/2008 ~ Faithfulness


... "The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. ..."
~ Matthew 9:37-38


The gospel of Christ needs to be preached.

... fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness,
goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. ... ~ Galatians 5:22-23


So that the truth of God be spoken.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for;
the evidence of things not seen. ~ Hebrews 11:1


Can God depend on you?

"For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who
called his own servants and delivered his goods to them." ~ Matthew 25:14


... approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, even so we speak,
not as pleasing men, but God who tests our hearts. ~ 1st Thessalonians 2:4


... commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
~ 2nd Timothy 2:2


Christians are servant stewards.

... for you know what commandments we gave you through the Lord Jesus.
~ 1st Thessalonians 4:2


"... teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo,
I am with you always, even to the end of the age." ... ~ Matthew 28:18-20


... as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover
it is required in stewards that one be found faithful. ~ 1st Corinthians 4:1-2


One must be faithful.

... by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone
but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart. ~ 2nd Corinthians 3:2-3


God relies on us.
We have been given the responsibility of sharing the truth.


Reliable, Trustworthy, Dependable

... For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ.
~ Galatians 1:6-10


Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not
need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. ~ 2nd Timothy 2:15


God wants us to understand His word.

Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
~ Ephesians 5:17


Faith requires work.

... that you do and will do the things we command you.
~ 2nd Thessalonians 3:4


Obey the word of God.

Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince,
rebuke, exhort, with longsuffering and teaching. ~ 2nd Timothy 4:2


... commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
~ 2nd Timothy 2:2


Speak the word of God.

... Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and
idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge ...
~ 1st Timothy 6:20-21


Guard the word of God.

"... Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life."
~ Revelation 2:10


Would you rather die than to be unfaithful?
Can God rely on you to carry His truth when the going gets tough?


... be reverent, not slanderers, temperate, faithful in all things.
~ 1st Timothy 3:11


Be faithful through all things; recall His words.

... a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, ...
~ Hebrews 2:17


... Christ Jesus, who was faithful to Him who appointed Him,
as Moses also was faithful ... ~ Hebrews 3:1-2


... He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been
perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him,
... ~ Hebrews 5:5-11


Jesus was faithful.
We are capable of being filled with faithfulness.


... an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast,
and which enters the Presence behind the veil, ... ~ Hebrews 6:19-20


"... He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him
are called, chosen, and faithful." ~ Revelation 17:14


Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey,
you are that one's slaves whom you obey, ... ~ Romans 6:16-18


We are the servants, Jesus is King.

... that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, ...
~ 1st Timothy 1:12-15


... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, ... ~ Romans 3:23

We too are unworthy.
There will be pressure from those that question your steadfastness.
Reject them as Satanís servants playing out their own whims.


... Blessed is that servant whom his master, when he comes, will find so doing.
... ~ Matthew 24:45-51


Blessed are those that the master can say, ďWell done faithful servant.Ē
~ There are consequences of unfaithfulness.


... If we deny Him, He also will deny us. If we are faithless,
He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself. ~ 2nd Timothy 2:11-13


But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of
his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
~ 1st Timothy 5:8


Would you choose to be faithless, unreliable, undependable,
untrustworthy, - in the face of God?


"... if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins." ~ John 8:24

... whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess
before My Father who is in heaven. ~ Matthew 10:32-33


It will be wonderful if you are found in the faith.

"He who believes and is baptized will be saved;
but he who does not believe will be condemned." ~ Mark 16:16


Faith is a commitment of Heart


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6/1/2008 ~ Committing to Christ


A commitment to faithfulness.

"... pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him forever. ..."
~ Exodus 21:6


Do you have the Love of a servant to serve forever?

"... whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple."
~ Luke 14:25-33


Life long choices have to be made.
Being a Christian is a commitment for life.
Christ needs to be first forever.
Submitting to His will and commands.
Will you pay the cost?


... present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service. ~ Romans 12:1


... 'You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your mind.' ... ~ Matthew 22:37


Jesus expects us to come to Him with our all.
We must put Him before any of our desires.


... they forsook all and followed Him. ~ Luke 5:11

Either He is all or nothing at all.

... "If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself,
and take up his cross, and follow Me." ~ Matthew 16:24


One has to have a commitment to learn.

"... teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; ..."
~ Matthew 28:18-20


1. Commitment to a personal relationship.
2. Commitment to Family of God, His church.
3. Commitment to the lost outside His church.


For the word of God is living and powerful,
and sharper than any two-edged sword, ... ~ Hebrews 4:12


Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not
need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. ~ 2nd Timothy 2:15


... received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily ...
~ Acts 17:11


... pray without ceasing, ... ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:17

... supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks
be made for all men, ... ~ 1st Timothy 2:1-2


... present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service. ~ Romans 12:1


As a living sacrifice to God, praying and searching out
the depths of His word.


See that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,
redeeming the time, because the days are evil. ~ Ephesians 5:15-16


Your Time.

... things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just,
whatever things are pure, ... - meditate on these things. ~ Philippians 4:8


Your Thoughts.

... 'You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your mind.' ... ~ Matthew 22:37


Your Love.

One's time expresses your commitment.
- Commitment to Godís church.


... Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.
~ 1st Corinthians 12:12-27


... consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not
forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, ... ~ Hebrews 10:23-25


One must seek out fellow Christians.

... does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides
in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son. ~ 2nd John 1:9


"... 'This people honors Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me.
And in vain they worship Me, ...' " ~ Mark 7:6-7


"... for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost."
~ Luke 19:10


Our goal should be to share Christ with others.

... need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God;
... ~ Hebrews 5:12-14


We must rise to the occasion of our calling.

... If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers,
let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things
God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, ... ~ 1st Peter 4:10-11


Commitment to the lost, the cause of Christ.

... you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink
but by the Spirit of the living God, ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 3:2-3


"... that they should repent, turn to God, and do works befitting repentance."
~ Acts 26:20


Being a Christian will mean hard work and sacrifice.

Do you Love Christ enough to Love Him for Life?

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6/15/2008 ~ Precious Things


                                   ┌─> Eli was the mentor of Samuel.
... mention of the ark of God, that Eli fell off the seat backward by the side
of the gate; and his neck was broken and he died, ... ~ 1st Samuel 4:17-18


Valued the Ark of the Covenant as a good luck charm
~ over that of a symbol for what it stood for.
Do you hold things God holds precious as precious?


... not redeemed with coruptible things, like silver and gold, ...
but with the precious blood of Christ, ... ~ 1st Peter 1:17-19

             └─> Redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus.

REDEMPTION = BOUGHT BACK

When does what is precious become not precious?

Precious in the sight of the Lord Is the death of His saints. ~ Psalm 116:15

God find precious value in each one of us.

... more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine
just persons who need no repentance. ... ~ Luke 15:7-10


... as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those
who are of the household of faith. ~ Galatians 6:10


It is not enough to just do enough to get by. <─┐                                       
"... foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise
took oil in their vessels with their lamps." ~ Matthew 25:1-4


"... Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour
in which the Son of Man is coming." ~ Matthew 25:5-13


Watch, Be Prepared = Value What is Precious

... as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be
corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. ~ 2nd Corinthians 11:3


* SALVATION IS A ONE TIME DEAL

"... 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful ...' "
~ Matthew 25:14-30


Do you want to be welcomed home?
We are instructed to invest in that we have been given by God.
If one hides oneís faith, there is no faith.


Given Responsibility = Do Not Delay

The message is do not wait, value the possession.
Someday our opportunity will be taken away.


... "Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one's life does not consist
in the abundance of the things he possesses." ... ~ Luke 12:13-21


Do you value your material inheritance over your love of God?

But for him who is joined to all the living there is hope,
for a living dog is better than a dead lion. ~ Ecclesiastes 9:4


True wealth does not consist in what one materially possesses
but is found in permanent relationships.


  FAITH  ──────┐
  WORD OF GOD  │   =   INVESTMENT  
  FELLOWSHIP  ─┘


God will punish those that have ignored Him as not precious.
                                 \ G /
Lay up your treasure ABOVE.
                                 / D \


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6/22/2008 ~ Know Thyself


                                   ┌─> Hearts may not know if in error.
... I know nothing against myself, yet I am not justified by this; ...
~ 1st Corinthians 4:3-5


It is important to honest with thyself.

KNOW THYSELF

Know thyself, ... but Jesus says Control Thyself.

What is the truth of our relationship with God?
~ Self knowledge is key to repentance.
Awareness is the wealth of wisdom.


... what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man
which is in him? ... ~ 1st Corinthians 2:10-11


We all know ourselves better than anyone else.
There are things in our hearts only we and God know.
The question for many is if they can know themselves.
How honest can we be with ourselves?
◎ We need to look for spiritual help.
~ We can be blind in seeing ourselves.
God sends help with friends, that we may see ourselves better.


           ┌─> Nathan exposed Davidís sin.
... So David said to Nathan, "I have sinned against the LORD." ...
~ 2nd Samuel 12:1-13


David needed help.
Can you say, ďI have sinned against the Lord?Ē


┌─> Paul rebukes Peter.                                                
... when I saw that they were not straightforward about the truth of
the gospel, I said to Peter before them all, ... ~ Galatians 2:11-14


Peter needed help.
→ Not all can see personal errors.
New truth is required, and to ably act upon it for salvation.
All can choose a path of improvement.


... believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the
truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. ~ 2nd Thessalonians 2:9-12


Not dealing rightly with truth could lead to more deception.
Courage is required to do what is right though painful.
Getting mad will not solve the problem leading one away from salvation.


Choice in Thyself
SIN             
↙ ↘             
  MAD       REPENTANCE  


... they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the
apostles, "Men and brethren what shall we do?" ... ~ Acts 2:37-38


One must want the truth over all Ė this is righteousness.

... heard these things they were cut to the heart,
and they gnashed at him with their teeth. ~ Acts 7:48-54


Mad or repentant?
Cain killed Abel because of his sin.


... "Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?"
~ Matthew 3:7


"... 'God, be merciful to me a sinner!' I tell you, this man went down
to his house justified rather than the other; ..." ~ Luke 18:9-14


One is more justified with God if you confess the truth.
Test of truth: Do you have the right attitude about truth?
Do you seek after the truth?  


Do you pray like David? <─┐       
Who can understand his errors? Cleanse me from secret faults. ...
~ Psalm 19:12-14


We all need to correct things we do wrong,
~ to become better in the eyes of God.
◎   ◎
A real person would want to make any correction
to become more whole.


     ●  Do you pray to God to send you the truth?
     ●  Do we pray for circumstances to expose our errors?
     ●  Do you pray for your faults to be revealed?
"... he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be
clearly seen, that they have been done in God." ~ John 3:19-21


The only way to heaven is to expose the truth.
Welcome the LIGHT.


... glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance;
and perseverance, character; and character, hope. ~ Romans 5:3-4


For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, ...
but the sorrow of the world produces death. ~ 2nd Corinthians 7:10


... is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. ~ Hebrews 4:12

God knows the thoughts of all souls.
We would all be better served if we do what is right.


... "Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity."
~ 2nd Timothy 2:15-19


The hardest truth is the sins we need to repent of.

... that they may know the truth, and that they may come to their senses
and escape the snare of the devil, ... ~ 2nd Timothy 2:24-26


How you deal with your sin will determine either life or death.

See the truth for what it is.

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6/22/2008 ~ Respect For God


He is Greater and Above Any of Us

┌─> It should be rooted in us.                                      
... as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts,
as in your ignorance; but as He who called you ... ~ 1st Peter 1:13-16


It means taking God seriously.

... "Because you did not believe Me, to hallow Me ..." ~ Numbers 20:8-12

We canít be indifferent Ė many people just donít care.
                   Caring has become impractical, irrelevant. <─┘
     Out of my way! <─┘                                       └─> Chivalry lost.
BEWARE

For our God is a consuming fire. ~ Hebrews 12:29

If we stood before God, we would be smitten with shame.

... above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, ...
~ Philippians 2:9-11


"Therefore take heed how you hear. ..." ~ Luke 8:18

                                                                        ┌─> Fantasy okay.
We canít accommodate Him to us.
                               └─> Water down God?


We are the ones that need to make the adjustment.

~ He is that He is ~

... because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God,
nor were thankful, ... ~ Romans 1:21


God is God whether we prefer it or not.
We canít make our own God, and those that do fall from grace.


He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. ~ 1st John 4:8

... who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped
and served the creature rather than the Creator, ... ~ Romans 1:25

└─> God in their image.               

We canít confine God to one compartment of our lives.
God is all encompassing and multifaceted.


... three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word,
and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one. ... ~ 1st John 5:7-8


And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, ...
~ John 1:14


And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God the Father through Him. ~ Colossians 3:17


God is concerned with all we do; how we think and feel.

"He who is not with Me is against Me,
and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad." ~ Matthew 12:30


Godís will is never irrelevant. He is the holder of the universe.

... "Lord, what do You want me to do?" ... ~ Acts 9:4-6

How do we submit to God and when?
We canít mock God; only humble hearts can approach Him.


Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows,
that he will also reap. ... ~ Galatians 6:7-8


The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God." They are corrupt, ...
~ Psalm 14:1-2


... There is no fear of God before his eyes. For he flatters himself
in his own eyes, ... ~ Psalm 36:1-4


One who turns away his ear from hearing the law,
Even his prayer is an abomination. ~ Proverbs 28:9


His will can not be defiled.
By His grace an offering has been made for our return to Him.
The Lord will put obstacles in our lives to see how serious we are.


... "Lord, I will follow You, but let me first go and bid them farewell
who are at my house." ... ~ Luke 9:57-62


God waits while our time is so very limited.

... gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope ...
~ 1st Peter 1:13


... serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. ~ Hebrews 12:28

If you donít properly respect God,
you wonít be able to respect yourself.


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6/23/2008 ~ Diligently Seeking God


But without faith it is impossible to please Him, ... ~ Hebrews 11:6

It is a tragedy if you are a Christian in name
with watered down commitment.

It is urgent that we seek God seriously.

Can God be pleased?


1. YES GOD CAN BE PLEASED        

Self-righteousness is wrong.

But we are all like an unclean thing,
And all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; ... ~ Isaiah 64:6


Are you a pompous or miserable Christian; unsettled person?

"... 'We are unprofitable servants. We have done what was our duty to do.' "
~ Luke 17:10


UNPROFITABLE FAITH
FAITH
↙    ↘
PRIDE    DOUBT
↙                  ↘
Self-Righteousness               Discouragement    

                                                      └─> Specialty of the Devil  

... he had this testimony, that he pleased God. ~ Hebrews 11:5
People can please God. <─┘      

"... The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace."
~ Numbers 6:24-26


The Lord takes pleasure in His people, that they strive for Him.

For the LORD takes pleasure in His people;
He will beautify the humble with salvation. ~ Psalm 149:4


... Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over
a few things, ... Enter into the joy of your lord." ~ Matthew 25:21


We need the confidence that God can be pleased.

2. BY FAITH WE WILL PLEASE GOD

How can one set out to please God?

By the
Righteousness
of the Law
= Never Sinned
or Broken any
of His Laws

... keep My statutes and My judgments, which if a man does,
he shall live by them: ... ~ Leviticus 18:5


... no one is justified by the law in the sight of God is evident,
for "the just shall live by faith." ... ~ Galatians 3:10-12


... ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own
righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. ...
~ Romans 10:1-8


... O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?
~ Romans 7:19-24


... having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord
Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith ... ~ Romans 5:1-2

                                                   \  |  /
God had to give Christ to punishment for our salvation.
                                                   /  |  \
... the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written,
"The just shall live by faith." ~ Romans 1:16-17


... "Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness." ...
~ Romans 4:3-5


... that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
~ Romans 3:21-26

                                                                                     
                                 He was just and the justifier.
                                 └─> Delivered amnesty.            


... that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection,
and the fellowship of His sufferings, ... ~ Philippians 3:9-11


Do we trust in our faith?

And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.
~ Genesis 15:6


                                       ┌─> Performing duties.
● Not righteousness of Law keeping.
● Righteousness of faith.                  
                                 └─> Trust in God.

If you trust in God you become a friend of God.
~ Trust was lost in the Garden of Eden.


... In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, ... having
believed, you were sealed with the ... promise, ... ~ Ephesians 1:12-13


TRUST  ──────┐
CONFIDENCE  ─┘
  IN GOD

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may
obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. ~ Hebrews 4:16


One must remain humble under His rule.
- A confidence with humility, it is possible through God.


... We love Him because He first loved us. ~ 1st John 4:17-19

SEEK OR HIDE

Many think we can not please God.
If one incorporates the Gospel of hope, it can be done.


Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent,
to be well pleasing to Him. ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:9


We should be eager to please the Father.

... that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him
who died for them and rose again. ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:14-15


... learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls. ... ~ Matthew 11:28-30


                                                       Adam <─┐ ┌─> Eve
If you think you canít please God, you will run and hide behind a tree.
The Lord wants us to rely on Him.
Live on the basis of faith.


... he who comes to God must believe that He is ... ~ Hebrews 11:6

... love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith,
... ~ 1st Timothy 1:5


God made this clearly available to us.
Some believers are cardinally minded.


... to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded
is life and peace. ... ~ Romans 8:5-8


Believing in God means practicing His whole word.
Many people are victims of temptation, ~ over taking God seriously.


... to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded
is life and peace. ... ~ Romans 8:5-8


Believing in God means practicing His whole word.
Many people are victims of temptation, ~ over taking God seriously.


... to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, ... ~ 2nd Timothy 1:5-7

"... if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins." ~ John 8:24

Is your faith ungenuine?

SPECTRUM OF FAITH


  Self imposed faith  
  or Given by Others  
  (Hand-Me-Down)  


          Sincere  
    
Perfect  
Faith  
───────────────────
  WEAKEST                           

STRONGEST  


1. CREEDENCE Ė Accept as true
2. CONFIDENCE Ė Jesus is the Son of God
3. CONSISTENCY Ė Trust Him like Noah and Abraham did
... always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you
a reason for the hope that is in you, ... ~ 1st Peter 3:15


Keep doing it until you die.

... know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep
what I have committed to Him until that Day. ~ 2nd Timothy 1:12


... I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me
the crown of righteousness, ... ~ 2nd Timothy 4:7-8


"... Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life."
~ Revelation 2:10


... must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured
of, knowing from whom you have learned them, ... ~ 2nd Timothy 3:14-15

\  |  /   
God gives us free will to choose.
~ One needs to have more than just traditional faith.
                                It needs to be personal, sincere. <─┘
One must own their own faith.
Tradition is not bad if it holds Godís own truth.


... stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, ...
~ 2nd Thessalonians 2:15


Our faith needs to become more than just something given by others.

... count it all joy when you fall into various trials,
knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. ~ James 1:2-4


... need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of
your faith, ... may be found to praise, honor, and glory ... ~ 1st Peter 1:6-9


... For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good
than for doing evil. ~ 1st Peter 3:15-17


Weak faith wonít withstand temptation or hardship
leading to an unfavorable certain coming judgment.
Godís word is for each to believe individually.
~ This is what He asks of us.


"... 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!' "
~ Matthew 7:21-23


"... in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments
of men.' " ~ Matthew 15:6-9


Do you have a strong faith?
How do you go beyond a hand me down faith?
You must look truthfully at the quality of your own faith,
Ė before Christís judgment seat confronts you.


HONESTY

... "Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!" ~ Mark 9:23-24

One needs to feed faith to grow stronger.
Challenge helps one to move forward.
Test you faith and call on it to grow.


... "I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive,
but you are dead." ~ Revelation 3:1


Each personís path is specific, all should ask for help.
Their will be times of work and rest which is healthy.
                                                      └─> Useful growing faith.


Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves.
... ~ 2nd Corinthians 13:5


FAITH IN THE GROWTH PROCESS
FEED, CHALLENGE, REFRESH

Keep doing what is good.
Get you mind off yourself and on God.


Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them,
that your progress may be evident to all. ~ 1st Timothy 4:15


Genuine and sincere, trust and obey.
~ What would I do that would please God?
Do what God would want you to do. <─┘         
                                                  └─> Then trust in God.
This is the decision of faith.                                          

The highest joy in the world should be searching out Godís own truth.


LIVE FOR THE LORD GOD YAHWEH JEHOVAH!

... He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. ~ Hebrews 11:6

Do you seek your own pleasures or consider Godís will?
Basic religion is to seek God.


ASSEMBLY  ──┐
BIBLE STUDY   │ =   DOES NOT MEAN YOU SEEK GOD
PRAYER    ───┘
       └─> If it is about you. 


... "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father
except through Me." ~ John 14:6


Doctrinal truth is essential to obtaining sound faith.
The question is, is it about you or God?
He has clearly said come to Him and not of men.


"Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!
For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, ..." ~ Matthew 23:15


  SEEK GOD: WANTING            ┌─> What God wants.
                            #1. GROWING IN OBEDIENCE
                                                         └─> To Love and Honor Him. 
            Increase Everyday


For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God,
but not according to knowledge. ~ Romans 10:2


┌─> God is our goal.  
"If anyone wants to do His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine, ..."
~ John 7:17


To Love Him the ultimate peace.

... but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and
reaching forward to those things which are ahead, ... ~ Philippians 3:13-14


┌─> A true desire and longing to worship Him acceptably.   
... That will I seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD All the days
of my life, To behold the beauty of the LORD, ... ~ Psalm 27:4


WE SHOULD ALWAYS WANT MORE OF GOD

... "You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with
all your soul, and with all your mind. ..." ~ Matthew 22:36-40


A deepest Love with all of your yearning heart.

The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth.
~ Psalm 145:18


Everyoneís clock is ticking towards death.

Seek the LORD while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near.
~ Isaiah 55:6


APPEALS TO GOD
1. DESIRE
2. LOVING
3. CALLING


We need to be more diligent, fervent, deeply longing for Him.
We were not intended to be so far away from God.
We want fellowship with God, which is
beyond anyoneís capacity in this forsaken world.
Sin keeps us from enjoying fellowship with God.


... also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.
~ Philippians 1:20


~ We are left for God to be glorified in us.
By any path, by any circumstance Ö to glorify God unconditionally.
                                         A challenge for us all. <─┘


... I will praise You, O Lord my God, with all my heart,
And I will glorify Your name forevermore. ~ Psalm 86:11-12


One must be grateful for what He has given us,
to be part of this opportunity to glorify and honor Him.


IT IS ABOUT HIM, NOT US

... cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles,
"Men and brethren, what shall we do?" ~ Acts 2:37


Is your desire inflamed ?

"... so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for
Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; ..." ~ Acts 17:27


"... have neglected the weightier matters of the law:
justice and mercy and faith. ..." ~ Matthew 23:23


His truth is here.

... to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul,
and to keep the commandments of the LORD ... ~ Deuteronomy 10:12-13


... what does the LORD require of you But to do justly, To love mercy,
And to walk humbly with your God? ~ Micah 6:8


\  |  /   
Our hearts should be over-glowing with Love for of Him.
/  |  \   


... "You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your mind. ... ~ Matthew 22:34-40


Many are overwhelmed and apprehensive
with Godís own hand delivered truths.


... "Go away for now; when I have a convenient time I will call for you."
~ Acts 24:24-25


Seeking God will be for better or worse.

... you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.
~ Jeremiah 29:12-13


~ If you seek Me, you will find Me.

It means never giving up.
                                                                        └─> This person will find God.


"... ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock,
and it will be opened to you." ~ Luke 11:9


God has delivered His inspired word for our instruction.

... So a book of remembrance was written before Him For those
who fear the LORD And who meditate on His name. ~ Malachi 3:16


All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine,
for reproof, for correction, for instruction, ... ~ 2nd Timothy 3:16-17


Do you want to know more about God each day?
        His will as our light. <─┘
God is seeking those who seek Him.


Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, ... ~ 1st John 5:1

Do you desire God enough; none do more than He desires each one of us.

... He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. ~ Hebrews 11:6
\  |  /   
We are all works in progress.
Love and honor Him more passionately tomorrow.


... eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek
for glory, honor, and immortality; but to those who are self-seeking and
do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness - indignation and wrath, ...
~ Romans 2:4-8


What is the reward of seeking Him?
What is the heart of our responsibility to God?
Scripturally, ďNew AgeĒ universal salvation for all is real deception.


SEEKING GOD = CERTAIN REWARD    
SELF-SEEKING = EXPECT PUNISHMENT


Goodness means taking a stand against evil; manipulations of man.
God is bound by His own rules, openly given to us.


... so that the righteous should be as the wicked; ... ~ Genesis 18:25

We need to do what is right over what is accepted by man.

... "What have you done? The voice of your brother's blood
cries out to Me from the ground." ~ Genesis 4:10


It hurts God for all those that have turned from His Love and Care.

For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last
on the earth; ... ~ Job 19:25


... in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God,
and on those who do not obey the gospel ... ~ 2nd Thessalonians 1:6-8


Right will be done.

... He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him, ...
~ Hebrews 5:9


... before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things
done in the body, according to what he has done, ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:10


God does love all, everyday, but there will be those that are lost.

Benevolent character of God.
     └─> He wants good for all.
God showed us through Christ that He wishes for us all back.


But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while
we were still sinners, Christ died for us. ~ Romans 5:8


... His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, ... ~ Romans 8:32

We must believe He is a benevolent God.
  └─> On good and bad days.
In the end, good will triumph over evil.
                                └─> He asks us to believe this, even when it is hard.
I have a redeemer who Lives!
                                                      └─> Hang on to this.

When God gains His victory,
He will allow those found faithful to come back to Him.
God offers us amnesty.
                                               └─> Grace given as if we never turned away from Him.


... If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him,
He also will deny us. ... ~ 2nd Timothy 2:11-13


God will not force us to choose Him.
~ God gave us free will.
He longs for us to say "yes" to Him.


Those who humbly say, ďYour Will Will Be DoneĒ = COME
+   -
Those who arrogantly ignore, dismiss, criticize,                   
 reject Him, God will say, ďYour Will Will Be DoneĒ = DEPART


God wants to give of Himself to us, as His intent in the Garden of Eden.

... is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish
but that all should come to repentance. ~ 2nd Peter 3:9


... the LORD your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you
may cling to Him, for He is your life ... ~ Deuteronomy 30:19-20


... a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave
alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always. ... ~ Acts 10:1-4


God currently waits for all to desire Him.

... when he was still a great way off, his father saw him
and had compassion, ... ~ Luke 15:20-24


...The LORD make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you; ...
~ Numbers 6:24-26


For the LORD takes pleasure in His people;
He will beautify the humble with salvation. ~ Psalm 149:4


We were made to be tender, valuing precious godliness.

... in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
~ Genesis 1:27


We were created to need God.
HE now asks that we should want Him.


... He has put eternity in their hearts, ... ~ Ecclesiastes 3:11

We were made to enjoy God and this is His wish for us all.
~ But this is a broken world that will be destroyed.


... both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.
~ 2nd Peter 3:10


"And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God,
and Jesus Christ whom You have sent." ~ John 17:3


Each one of us has to decide if we will earnestly follow (seek) God.

... for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever.
~ Revelation 22:1-5


What we experience of God today is just a drop in the eternal bucket.
● Our sorrow is far from what God wants for us.
● We need not underestimate what is coming.
● Our groaning for Him should be unceasing.
● We need reverence and gratitude for all that He is.

... although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God,
nor were thankful, ... ~ Romans 1:21


To forget reverence AND gratitude for God leads us to sin.
God loves us more than we love ourselves.
We should find joy in pleasing Him.


"And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you
to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also." ~ John 14:3


What of this world could replace what He offers us?
Do you long for God more than the trinkets one desires?
- Christianity was meant to put the groaning for God in us.
└─> God gave us the fuel of Him.                                

He Is The Fuel We Should Run On

... He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. ~ Hebrews 11:6

Diligently Seek = Search Out

He created you to be part of His Heart.
Indifference, apathy, complacency hurts God
~ when you could care less for Him.


"... I have no pleasure in you," Says the LORD of hosts, ... ~ Malachi 1:10

Some church going people may not be seeking God.

"You also say, 'Oh, what a weariness!' And you sneer at it,"
Says the LORD of hosts. ... ~ Malachi 1:13


Do you have passion for God that ignites you or do you hold a coldness?

"... outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full
of hypocrisy and lawlessness." ~ Matthew 23:25-28


Casual or part-time Christians are in danger of not pleasing God.

"... because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot,
I will vomit you out of my mouth." ~ Revelation 3:15-16


How can we get closer to God?

1. Sincerity
2. Seriousness
3. Decisiveness
4. Passion
5. Energy
6. Persistence
7. LOVE


     →           \   |   /
Diligently Seeking
     →           /   |   \


... though I give my body to be burned, but not love, it profits me nothing.
~ 1st Corinthians 13:1-3


... He said to them all, "If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny
himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me." ~ Luke 9:23


Good things come from commitment.

  EMOTIONS   ─┐
  INTELLECT     │   =   We need to include God in all of us  
  WILL  ─────┘


We must seek God FERVENTLY.
Are you desperately hungry and thirsty for God?
~ You are out of touch if you miss this.


... "Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself,
and take up his cross, and follow Me." ~ Mark 8:34


"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled." ~ Matthew 5:6


... My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. ~ Psalm 42:1-2

Do we really want God?
We must seek God FAITHFULLY.
It is an unquestionable continuance, eagerly not as burdensome.


"God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."
~ John 4:24


"... those who come near Me I must be regarded as holy;
And before all the people I must be glorified." ~ Leviticus 10:1-3


We must seek the truth of God; Hallow be Him.

... Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? ...
~ James 4:4


Is it the world or God?

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands,
you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. ~ James 4:8


Decide to choose.

"Blessed are the pure in heart, For they shall see God." ~ Matthew 5:8
└─> Single mindedness.                           

FERVENTLY AND FAITHFULLY

"... you will find Him if you seek Him with all your heart
and with all your soul." ~ Deuteronomy 4:29


"... the nations shall know that I am the LORD," says the Lord GOD,
"when I am hallowed in you before their eyes." ~ Ezekiel 36:23


We are representatives of God.
If we diligently seek God we will have more:
IMPACT with others and we will obtain.
          PEACE and deep joy knowing we run for God.


Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you ...
~ 1st Timothy 4:14-16


But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, ...,
I myself should become disqualified. ~ 1st Corinthians 9:27

There is training in sPIRITUAL growth.
It may not come easy but it is worth having.
God will send us pain to discipline us.
                                      └─> The flesh must serve the spirit.

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not
need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. ~ 2nd Timothy 2:15


"He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does
not gather with Me scatters abroad." ~ Matthew 12:30


It really is ALL or NOTHING.

~ Why do we seek the Lord?
So what motives motivate us?
How do we increase our quality?
Most religion is self-centered with the focus
on ourselves, seeking what life can do for us.
All meaningful change starts with the right aspiration.


... Do not labor for the food which perishes,
but for the food which endures to everlasting life, ... ~ John 6:26-27


... seek those things which are above, where Christ is, ... ~ Colossians 3:1

Do you seek what is more important than yourself?
Many people see God as the celestial Santa Claus.
               ~ Outward wealth and inward comfort. <─┘

It is not about wanting from God, it is about
thanking God for any circumstance to learn His will.


... tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character;
and character, hope. ... ~ Romans 5:3-5

                        ↘ ↓ ↙
If the focus is on ourselves,
the devil has a good chance of winning your soul over.


... love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul,
and with all your mind. ... ~ Matthew 22:34-40


One must love the Lord unconditionally.
    This is a challenge and hard to do. <─┘
~ God challenges us to love one another.
Oneís ability to do this questions whether one is shallow or deep.
If we have a problem loving one another,
how can we expect to love Him?


... he who does not love his brother whom he has seen,
how can he love God whom he has not seen? ... ~ 1st John 4:20-21


Can we rise to open our hearts to Him?

Religion is about God, not us.

... we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence
of the power may be of God and not of us. ~ 2nd Corinthians 4:6-7


If you truly seek God, one never gives up, for all that is better or worse.

Many look to Christianity for happiness.
Christianity for the most is hard and painful. <─┘ 

One must deny the pleasures of the world and confront the self.
Many choose personal happiness over that of making God happy.
Itís not about the pursuit of happiness.
Itís about glorifying God whether by life or by death.


"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness,
and all these things shall be added to you." ~ Matthew 6:33


Focus on God first and the rest will fall in to place.
~ How can you serve the Lord being grateful for the opportunity?
● Grow in improving our obedience.
● Talk to the Lord and ask for specific help.
● Study the Bible for deeper wisdom of our true living God.
● We need to pray more, honestly and truly expressing to Him.
● Spend more time thinking about His worthiness, His attributes.

If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. ... ~ 1st Peter 4:11

Because we Love Him.

... present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service. ~ Romans 12:1


Learn to sacrifice for God.
What costly gift have you given to the Lord?
~ What would you give up ... for the Lord?
He GAVE the COSTLIEST gift Ė HIS LIFE for us.
Yield to the Lord for His sake voluntarily, whole-heartedly.
└─> This is Love.              

GRATITUDE FOR GRACE is what makes seekers diligent.


... I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I,
but the grace of God which was with me. ~ 1st Corinthians 15:9-10


"... to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little." ~ Luke 7:44-47

Where there is little hope, love escapes them.
Are you inwardly harsh or can you reach out to care openly?


... pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will
hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin ... ~ 2nd Chronicles 7:14-15


... not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; ...
~ Romans 12:11

            \   |   /                                           ┌─> Divine Summery
For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,
teaching us that, denying ungodliness ... ~ Titus 2:11-14

└─> Divine Summery                                                      

Gary Henry ~
"Those who serve the Lord the most passionately are those
who are most lovingly aware of their indebtedness to His grace."
The Bible is a book of love to teach us how to love.


We work in the vineyard of the Lord.
Can we love the Lord for the Lord?
Do you walk the talk?


... "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized
in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; ..." ~ Acts 2:38


DOES YOUR PATH RETURN TO LOVE OF GOD?
INFANT
Innocence
"Safe"
WORLDLY EXPERIENCE
● Selfishness
● Sinfulness  
ADULT-LIKE
Innocence
"Submission"

... perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment.
But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. ~ 1st John 4:16-18


... - to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may
be filled with all the fullness of God. ~ Ephesians 3:14-19


... - meditate on these things. ... ~ Philippians 4:4-9

How can we live if not for the Love of God?
Go to Him in Peace.

The LORD looks down from heaven upon the children of men,
To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. ~ Psalm 14:2


God looks down from heaven upon the children of men,
To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. ~ Psalm 53:2


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7/20/2008 ~ Lessons Learned From Cain


... the LORD respected Abel and his offering,
but He did not respect Cain and his offering. ... ~ Genesis 4:1-8


DARKNESS OF PRIDE
SON'S
OF ADAM
OFFERING MOTIVE OUTCOME
WITH GOD
  CAIN     BEST FRUIT     MY BEST?     DISPLEASED  
  ABEL     BEST SHEEP     YOUR BEST     PLEASED  

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine,
for reproof, for correction, for instruction, ... ~ 2nd Timothy 3:16.17


For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may
put to silence the ignorance of foolish men ... ~ 1st Peter 2:15-16


... For anger rests in the bosom of fools. ~ Ecclesiastes 7:9

1. The Silence of God is Not Permission

God wanted Cain to know what he did.

... "Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen? ~ Genesis 4:6

... "Where is Abel your brother?" ~ Genesis 4:9-10

God wanted Cain to show humble remorse.

When pride comes, then comes shame; But with the humble is wisdom.
~ Proverbs 11:2


                         Learn from my brothers mistakes. <─┐
God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks.
... ~ Hebrews 11:4


If you love Godís word, His guidance will come to you.

... My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. ...
~ Isaiah 55:8-10


No one can appreciate the totality that is God

Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ
does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ
has both the Father and the Son. ~ 2nd John 1:9


God clearly wants all to come to Him through Christ.
He calls us to obey His simple word and not the ramblings of men.


"You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, ..."
~ John 4:22


Our One True Living God
wants all to come back to Him through His word.


... the foolishness of God is wiser than men, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 1:18-25

... but as it is in truth, the word of God, ... ~ 1st Thessalonians 2:13

 ┌─> The Bible clearly points out that there is only one faith. 
So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
~ Romans 10:17


... one Lord, one faith, one baptism; ... ~ Ephesians 4:5

To know the truth, counterfeit doctrines will be recognized.
Did God ask for it or give an instruction or example?
God runs the show, not man.

Would you dare deny the God of the Bible and His delivered word? 
● Cain denied God and chose his own way leading to destruction.


Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall.
~ Proverbs 16:18


... And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil
and his brother's righteous. ~ 1st John 3:10-12


SON'S
OF ADAM
WORKS SACRIFICE EMOTION RESULT
ABEL RIGHTEOUS MORE EXCELLENT
(respected)
LOVE LIFE
CAIN EVIL UNSATISFACTORY
(not respected)
HATE
(Greed)
DEATH

The fear of the Lord is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way ...
~ Proverbs 8:13


It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. ~ Hebrews 10:31

... If anyone adds to these things, ... if anyone takes away from the words
of the book ... God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, ...
~ Revelation 22:18-19


2. Sin is Progressive                              

"If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well,
sin lies at the door. ..." ~ Genesis 4:7

└─> Cain made a mistake,                      
                         └─> assumed his offering would make God happy,
                                            └─> God asked him to come back.

"... And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it." ~ Genesis 4:7

Went from pride to jealousy to lying = SIN

... A proud look, A lying tongue, Hands that shed innocent blood, ...
~ Proverbs 6:16-19


Stop your sin so the progression will not deepen.
└─> Nip it in the bud.               


Then the LORD said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" ... ~ Genesis 4:9

Sin is to deny the truth from yourself.

      Do not let sin rise and overwhelm your life. <─┐
Your glorying is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the
whole lump? Therefore purge out the old leaven, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 5:6-7


It can be hard to have an open humble vigilant heart.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about
like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. ~ 1st Peter 5:8


Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth,
Before the difficult days come, ... ~ Ecclesiastes 12:1


3. Generation Will Be Affected              

Then Cain went out from the presence of the Lord and dwelt
in the land of Nod on the east of Eden. ... ~ Genesis 4:16-22

         └─> Cainís genealogy does not lead to God.

┌─> No further account for Cainís lineage is given.    ┌─> Brings about a dead end.  
... Lamech, listen to my speech! For I have killed a man for wounding me, ...
~ Genesis 4:23-24

Lamech boasted in his sin.
             

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life
in Christ Jesus our Lord. ~ Romans 6:23

                                               
            ┌─> Seth, Enosh, men calling on God.
... Then men began to call on the name of the LORD. ~ Genesis 4:25-26
└─> Abraham                                                            
 └─> Isaac                                          
 └─> Jacob                      
 └─> Joseph 
                   └─> David
                                       └─> Jesus
                                                              └─> Faithful


"Behold, all souls are Mine; The soul of the father As well as
the soul of the son is Mine; The soul who sins shall die." ~ Ezekiel 18:4


... get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit. For why should you die, ...
~ Ezekiel 18:20-32


Desire Life in the light of God.

... when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you,
which dwelt first in your grandmother ... ~ 2nd Timothy 1:5


Generations will be affected, for good and or bad.
~ We need to think beyond ourselves ~
└─> Do you love God more than your own soul? <─┘
Our example touches all those after us.
What will be the consequence of our actions?
                     We need to choose wisely. <─┘


Choice of Good (Light) over Bad (Darkness)
CAIN
  ABEL & SETH  
The Way of the World
        The Way of God        

4. God Offers All Men a Second Chance!

For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this
is the victory that has overcome the world - our faith. ~ 1st John 5:4


                                                                            Just do what I tell you. <─┐
"... sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it."
~ Genesis 4:7

↖   ↕   ↗
God offers a second chance to turn from sin.
↙    ↓    ↘

... although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were
thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, ... ~ Romans 1:20-32


Gentiles are sinners.

... "the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you," ...
~ Romans 2:17-24


Jews are sinners.

... previously charged both Jews and Greeks that they are all under sin.
~ Romans 3:9


All are Sinners.
↙    ↓    ↘

... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, ... ~ Romans 3:23

... just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father,
even so we also should walk in newness of life. ... ~ Romans 6:3-6


You, who sin, come back to My way and I will cover you with my Son;
buried in His death you will find life.


... without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope
in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God ... ~ 1st Thessalonians 1:3


Give God what He asks for.

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7/27/2008 ~ Seize Upon Forgiveness


And behold, a woman in the city who was a sinner, when she knew
that Jesus sat at the table in the Pharisee's house, ... ~ Luke 7:37-43


~ A Pharisee and sinner are before Jesus.
1. A proud devout man.
                    2. A regretful woman of lower class.


"... not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance;
but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy ... ~ 1st Peter 1:13-16

~
The Pharisee is in a competition of thoughts with Jesus
                           └─> ~ He is not a prophet.


... Then He turned to the woman and said to Simon,
"Do you see this woman? ... ~ Luke 7:43-48


Jesus turned from His elitist host to this incidental riff-raff.
1. Simon was not thanked.
  2. The woman was thanked.


"... which of them will love him more?" Simon answered and said,
"I suppose the one whom he forgave more." ~ Luke 7:41-43


LVE is the key to dedication.
Those forgiven MORE are much more grateful.
No one is little in the Kingdom of God.
It is the greatness of people in recovery.


... whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest
in the kingdom of heaven. ... ~ Matthew 18:4


~ An appreciation of Jesusí refreshing incorrigible compassion.
It is not about the place of church.
It is about coming to Jesus.


HYPOCRITE GENUINE

... while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. ~ Romans 5:8

SIN = DEBT

When we sin, it hurts God.
God is personal, as a Father, even if the children ignore His wishes.

Revive me, O LORD, for Your name's sake! For
Your righteousness' sake bring my soul out of trouble. ~ Psalm 143:11


When we sin against God, it is personal.

"He who is not with Me is against Me,
and he who does not gather with Me scatters." ~ Luke 11:23


... "I have sinned against the LORD." ... ~ 2nd Samuel 12:13

Sin should cause grief.
                         
... Blessed is the man to whom the LORD does not impute iniquity,
And in whose spirit there is no deceit. ... ~ Psalm 32:1-5


... cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions,
And my sin is always before me. ... ~ Psalm 51:1-13


A sinful regretting woman weeps for God.

Then He said to her, "Your sins are forgiven." ~ Luke 7:48

One sin is too much to bear.
What will you do for Jesus?

- Pray to Him
- Talk about Him
- Study about Him

... three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, ...
~ Daniel 6:10


        - Love Him more
        - Appreciate Him more
        - Learn Him more

To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness,
though we have rebelled against Him." ~ Daniel 9:9


Do you cry for the Lord?
Is your regret for your sins?

... He said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you. Go in peace."
~ Luke 7:49-50


... and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will
guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus ~ Philippians 4:6-7


Are you in harmony with God?

For God has not given us a spirit of fear,
but of power and of love and of a sound mind. ~ 2nd Timothy 1:7


Victory through Christ.

... we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.
~ Colossians 1:13-14


Life given by God.

" '... that they may receive forgivness of sins and an inheritance among
those who are sanctified by faith in Me.' " ~ Acts 26:18


... For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him. ...
~ 2nd Timothy 2:11-13


One must purpose the self to God
~ else one slips lost in self.


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7/27/2008 ~ Heal The Brokenhearted


... He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, ... ~ Luke 4:18

Jesus came that we might find His salvation.

... where it was written: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He
has anointed Me To preach the gospel to the poor; ... ~ Luke 4:16-19


... He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, ... ~ Isaiah 61:1-2

The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit. ~ Psalm 34:18


He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds. ~ Psalm 147:3

THINGS THAT CAUSE A BROKEN HEART:
1. Boyfriend or Girlfriend
2. Husband or Wife
3. Son or Daughter
4. Friend or Acquaintance
5. Things or Objects; Cars, Houses, Mementos
6. Circumstances; Natural Disasters or Wars
7. Thoughts of the Mind, Ideas, Academia

The REAL source of a broken Heart ...
SOUR    FRUITS
SIN


THING THAT CAUSES A BROKEN HEART:
8. When Someone Dies
          a) Physical
          b) Spiritual

Healing the heart or the spirit:
     1. By or through the word of God

... the word of God is living ... piercing even to the division of soul and spirit,
... a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart ~ Hebrews 4:11-12


... may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless
at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:23


SOUL SPIRIT BODY
LIVING BEING
Genesis 2:7
BREATH OF LIFE
Psalm 78:39
FORMED OF DUST
Ecclesiastes 3:19-21
UNIQUE
Matthew 10:28-31
COMMON
Proverbs 22:2
SENSATION
Luke 24:39
INNER BEING
2nd Timothy 1:7
DYNAMIC FORCE
2nd Corinthians 3:5-6
MOTIONS
Job 31:4
ACCUMULATED
Proverbs 24:12
MOMENTARY
Proverbs 20:27
ACTIONS
1st Samuel 2:3
IMAGINATION
AND MEMORY
TRANSMITTOR
Job 32:8
RECEPTOR
2nd Corinthians 5:10
GOD OWNED
Ezekiel 18:4
GOD FORMED
Zechariah 12:1
GOD CREATED
James 2:26

And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the
eyes of Him to whom we must give account. ... ~ Hebrews 4:13-16


... when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. ...
~ 1st John 3:2-3


... There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.
~ 1st Corinthians 15:42-44


... If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, ... ~ James 1:2-5

               \  |  /
Through the spirit IN the heart
               /  |  \

2. In the church                       
               └─> A place of recovery from SIN.

Jesus is the master physician.

... "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick.
I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance." ~ Mark 2:17


God works through the church as long as the members are faithful.

... the body is not one member but many. ... ~ 1st Corinthians 12:12-14

... you are the body of Christ, and members individually.
~ 1st Corinthians 12:26-27


... you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, ...
~ Galatians 6:1-2


~ The church is more a hospital than a country club.

... comfort each other and edify one another, ... ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:9-14
└─> As we heal together. 

Find sanctuary with other Christians.

3. Hope that is set before us   

A broken heart is devastating.
└─> We want to just give up. 
\  |  /      
The Light of God can help.


                        There is work to be done NOW; do things for others. <─┐
... comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.
~ 2nd Thessalonians 2:16-17


As we wait, let us do GOOD WORKS.

... though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by
various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, ... ~ 1st Peter 1:3-9


Life can be disappointing, rely on Godís word to help us heal.
We are here to serve the Lord by helping those around us.


... be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another,
even as God in Christ forgave you. ... ~ Ephesians 4:31-5:4


We need to stitch our hearts back together with the Word of God.

GOOD    FRUITS
1. Believe Him
2. Repent to Him
3. Courage to Announce Him
4. Faithful in Baptism

For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait
for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, ... ~ Philippians 3:20-21


The hope of Heaven is where we want to go.

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8/10/2008 ~ Christian Responsibilities


1. Submit your body as a Living Sacrifice to God

... present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service. ... ~ Romans 12:1-2


2. Serve God with Spiritual Gifts

... gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them:
... ~ Romans 12:3-8


3. Behave Like Christians

... Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. ... ~ Romans 12:9-21

4. Submit to Government

Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. ... ~ Romans 13:1-7

5. Love your Neighbor

... Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore
love is the fulfillment of the law. ~ Romans 13:8-10


6. Put on Christ

... put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh,
to fulfill its lusts. ~ Romans 13:11-14


7. Example of Conversion Ė The Ethiopian

... "See, here is water. What hinders me from being baptized?" ...
~ Acts 8:26-39


● HEAR
● BELIEVE
● REPENT
● CONFESS
● BAPTIZED

... And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.
~ Acts 2:47


8. Continue to Grow

"Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you
rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, ..." ~ Matthew 11:28-30


It is the Lord who adds to the church.
~ Do you follow Him?


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8/17/2008 ~ Fellowship We Should Have


... let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, ...
~ Hebrews 10:19-25


~ WITH FATHER ~

↔ ONE ANOTHER ↔

GOD       GOD
↕           ↕
Man  ↔  Man

   Verticle Fellowship

   Horizontal Fellowship

To be in fellowship with God, one must follow His word.
Self imposed emotional illusion is with the self, not God.


"Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name
of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; ..." ~ Acts 2:38

            └─> The gospel explained.

... being many, are one body, so also is Christ. For by one Spirit
we were all baptized into one body ... ~ 1st Corinthians 12:12-14


To be one with God it can only be by Godís regulations.

... not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, ... ~ Hebrews 10:25

Donít quit assembling to help stay with God.
We should have a sense of need to worship.
It is done of the self through Him. 


For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men,
the Man Christ Jesus, ... ~ 1st Timothy 2:5-7

\ | /
Many look for signs, when the sign has already been given.
Stop looking for signs and simply, wholly believe; this is faith.


... holy hands, without wrath and doubting; ... ~ 1st Timothy 2:8

... when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?"
~ Luke 18:8


It is error that we need to be attentive of.
Jesus taught us what is necessary to stay in the faith.
To go beyond it or not heed itsí warnings is to change it.
We must be careful to abide in His and His apostles words.


"God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."
~ John 4:24


Do you appreciate the opportunity to commune with brethren for God?

I WAS glad when they said to me, "Let us go into the house of the LORD."
~ Psalm 122:1


Do you like to worship or is it an obligation?

God Deserves Our Worship

We love Him because He first loved us. ~ 1st John 4:19

~ Because we love Him ~

SPIRIT
TRUTH

One must worship because one wants to.
~ ADRE HIM.
Division is not what God calls for.
It is about an inner spiritual healing and not an outer emotional high. 


... speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, ...
~ 1st Corinthians 1:10


"Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come
to bring peace but a sword. ..." ~ Matthew 10:34-35


Enemies of God can be found in oneís own house.
More people fall into a self seeking ditch rather 
than climbing the mountain to understand God.


God looks down from heaven upon the children of men, To see
if there are any who understand, who seek God. ~ Psalm 53:2


And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, ...
~ Hebrews 10:24


  Assemble to build up strength in the House of God  

Now on the first day of the week, when the disciples came together
to break bread, ... ~ Acts 20:7


On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, ...
~ 1st Corinthians 16:2


Letís be the family God calls for assembling on the first day of the week.

And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship,
in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. ~ Acts 2:42


WORSHIP
1. Continued Steadfastly
2. Apostles Doctrine
3. Breaking of Bread
4. Prayers

Itís not about a social organization of fun and parties.
Our celebration is through worship of what has already come.


Sanctify them by your truth. Your word is truth. ~ John 17:17

One must look for the good in other brethren.

Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace
and the things by which one may edify another. ~ Romans 14:19


As living stones, God calls each of us to be a rock for others.
Talk with one another about the Bible.
The power is in the scripture.
What we should be.


This will increase our faith and hope.

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9/14/2008 ~ Checklist For Life


GRACE covers everything.
/ | \      

... He might show the exceeding riches of His grace
in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. ... ~ Ephesians 2:1-10


The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit ... ~ Romans 8:16-17

The Spirit bears witness of our spirit.
~ Our spirit must correspond with the Spirit.


Dispensations
  1. Patriarchal
  2. Mosaiac
3. Christian

We use a checklist to identifiy which dispensation we are in.

1. Hear
2. Believe
3. Repent
4. Confess
5. Baptized
──┐
      
      Salvation of the Individual
      
──┘

Many scriptures tell us how to worship God.
There are checklists to be faithful toward God's once delivered word.


... on the Lord's Day, ... ~ Revelation 1:10

... speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord. ~ Ephesians 5:19


It is simply clear what God asks of us.

teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual
songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. ~ Colossians 3:16


... pray without ceasing, ... ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:17

Patterns have been established.

Now on the first day of the week, when the disciples came together
to break bread, ... ~ Acts 20:7


And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship,
in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. ~ Acts 2:42


On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside,
storing up as he may prosper, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 16:1-2


... (by grace you have been saved), ... ~ Ephesians 2:5

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and not of yourselves,
it is the gift of God, ... ~ Ephesians 2:8


It is grace that looks down upon us.

The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit
that we are children of God, ... ~ Romans 8:16


For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man
which is in him? ... ~ 1st Corinthians 2:11


Each one of us determines our spirit.

... judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy.
Mercy triumphs over judgment. ~ James 2:8-13


We need the Bible to show us that checklist of what we need to do.

... that I might win those who are without law; ... ~ 1st Corinthians 9:21

... Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. ...
~ Galatians 5:16-26


  DON'T DO THIS:     BUT DO THIS:  
Adultery
Fornication
Uncleanness
Lewdness
Idolatry
Sorcery
Hatred
Contentions
Jealousies
Outbursts of Wrath
Selfish Ambitions
Dissensions
Heresies
Envy
Murders
Drunkenness
Revelries
Love
Joy
Peace
Longsuffering
Kindness
Goodness
Faithfulness
Gentleness
Self-Control

~ A lifetime of work.

... put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh,
to fulfill its lusts. ~ Romans 13:8-14


... he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has
forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. ~ 2nd Peter 1:5-9


We should remember we who are Christians
that we have the remission of sins.


... if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance
will be supplied to you abundantly ... ~ 2nd Peter 1:10-11


All should know what God looks for in our spirit.

... as a steward of God, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to
wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but hospitable, a lover of what
is good, sober-minded, just, holy, self-controlled, ... ~ Titus 1:5-11


We apply a checklist for elders.

... be reverent, not double-tongued, not given to much wine, not
greedy for money, holding the mystery of the faith ... ~ 1st Timothy 3:1-13


Do we align with the word of God under His gift of grace?
We need to recognize the grace that covers us.


My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. ...
~ 1st John 2:1-5


Salvation is by grace and gives us the liberty to repent,
but not a license to sin.


License to sin OR Pass from God to Misbehave?

We must consider His checklist
~ if we wish to please God.


  Man and his desires
God in the Highest!

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9/21/2008 ~ Do You Stand With the Power of God?

... "Do you understand what you are reading?" And he said,
"How can I, unless someone guides me?" ... ~ Acts 8:25-40


Do we prepare for God?
Does He excite us for the eternity that He offers?
~ How can we renew our passion for God?


1. Listen to the Lord

Now an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying, "Arise and go ...
~ Acts 8:26


Then the Spirit said to Philip, "Go near and overtake this chariot."
~ Acts 8:29


We have all been told to teach.
↙ ↓ ↘

... Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them ...
~ Matthew 28:18-20


... "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. ...
~ Mark 16:15-16


We are not excused from divine command.
If we put our jobs, hobbies, families, or desire to travel
before our stand for God, we fall short.


TEACHING = PERSONAL SACRIFICE

... "Here am I! Send me." And He said, "Go, and tell this people: ..."
~ Isaiah 6:8-9


2. Be on the Look Out

Do you have a concern for fellow souls?
Look out for those looking to be right with God.
One word of God or an invitation to a Gospel Meeting may save.

When each of us is ready to engage others
we will individually and collectively renew evangelism.


3. Be prepared to preach

... "I ask you, of whom does the prophet say this, of himself
or some other man?" ~ Acts 8:34


... always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you
a reason for the hope that is in you, ... ~ 1st Peter 3:15-17


We need to keep Christ first in our herts.
Always be ready to make a difference to glorify God.

Hope, is it in you?
                   └─> Fundamental to a Christian.

People donít care how much you know
~ unless you show them how much you care.


4. Begin Again

... passing through, he preached in all the cities till he came to Caesarea.
~ Acts 8:40


It may be we will only encounter the person once.
~ Disappointments can make it difficult to begin again.


The Difference
HELL ↔ HEAVEN

We can not afford to give it up.

1. Listen to the Lord
2. Be on the Look Out
3. Be prepared to preach
4. Begin Again

Do you want to worship
at the throne of Heaven forever?


... written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort
of the Scriptures might have hope. ~ Romans 15:4


Do we have steadfast trust to stand for Him?
Examples of God's power by example are evident.


The First Day of the week has always been important.
● God created the Heavens and the earth.
● The angel announced Jesus had risen.
● The church began on Pentecost.
God's creation for us is important to Him.
                           \ | /
His Bible informs us of Him.
                           / | \

And so it was, when Gideon heard the telling of the dream
and its interpretation, ... ~ Judges 7:15-23


The book of judges covers 350 years of Jewish history.

In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right
in his own eyes. ~ Judges 17:6


It was a dark time where they repeatedly fell away from God.

In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right
in his own eyes. ~ Judges 21:25


As soldiers of Christ, we are at war.
Souls are at stake with eternal consequences.
Standing your ground is what God calls for.


And every man stood in his place all around the camp;
and the whole army ran and cried out and fled. ~ Judges 7:21


And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon ...
~ Hebrews 11:32-34


Faith is for every man and a portal to the eternal.

But without faith it is impossible to please Him,
for he who comes to God must believe that He is, ... ~ Hebrews 11:6


300 Jews against 135,000 Midianites.
       └─> 1 against 450 odds.

Where is your faith?
Yes, we will be out numbered.


"... pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest."
~ Matthew 9:37-38


Join the cause of God.
We need committed people to stand for God.
 Be part of His power. 


FAITH = CONFIDENCE WITHOUT CONDITION

Then the LORD said to Gideon, "By the three hundred men who lapped
I will save you, and deliver the Midianites into your hand. ... ~ Judges 7:7


... "Arise, for the LORD has delivered the camp of Midian into your hand."
~ Judges 7:15


If God is on your side, you can not loose.

FAITH = REFUSAL TO PANIC

Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. ~ 1st Corinthians 16:13

He is fighting for us.

When Gideon came to the Jordan, he and the three hundred men who
were with him crossed over, exhausted but still in pursuit. ~ Judges 8:4


The battle belongs to the Lord.
He is in control.
Will you serve Him without condition?
Each man must find his place to stand for God.
└─> Everyone has a place to serve.        
~ Serve Him with what you have.
- Participate!

~ By the grace of God, I will do!
Stand Firm. ↗


... And the country was quiet for forty years in the days of Gideon.
~ Judges 8:28


The faith of a few is GREAT.

... out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle,
turned to flight the armies of the aliens. ~ Hebrews 11:32-34


Choices made when weakest show your greatest strength.
Where do you put your confidence?


"... when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?"
~ Luke 18:8


Will you be able to withstand the pressure?

┌─> The weeping prophet.
Jeremiah did.                       
                                  └─> He warned his people only to fall upon deaf ears.

... the word of the LORD was made to me A reproach and a derision daily. ...
~ Jeremiah 20:7-10


... Why did I come forth from the womb to see labor and sorrow,
That my days should be consumed with shame? ~ Jeremiah 20:14-18


Life is a series of joys and sorrows, pain comes to all.

"I am not able to bear all these people alone, because the burden
is too heavy for me." ~ Numbers 11:14


MOSES

... he prayed that he might die, and said, "It is enough! Now, LORD,
take my life, ... ~ 1st Kings 19:4


ELIJAH

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I say rejoice! ~ Philippians 4:4

God tells us to bank on Him, count on it and be filled.
However, bad decisions lead to bad results.


1. Worry More, Pray Less

~ One has to take concerns to God.

The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed,
A refuge in times of trouble. ... ~ Psalm 9:9-10


... Hovers over its young, Spreading out its wings, taking them up,
Carrying them on its wings, ... ~ Deuteronomy 32:11


In troubled times we need to rely on Him more.

... knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance,
character; and character, hope. ... ~ Romans 5:1-5


... knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. ... ~ James 1:2-4

Some will not hear nor be ready when called.

... the word which they heard did not profit them,
not being mixed with faith in those who heard it. ~ Hebrews 4:1-2


If God can forgive our sins, He is able to stand with all of our troubles.

... the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard
your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:6-7


Diligent hope fills the heart beyond knowledge and delivers peace.
He wants to hear our pleas that we can find joy in Him.
However, bad decisions lead to bad results.


2. Find an Alternative to Worship

Worship is for God and not man.
└─> One has to invest in wanting God.
Would we choose the things of this world over Him?
      Brought nothing Ė Leave with nothing.
He gave everything - He gives everything


... consider one another in order to stir up love and good works,
not forsaking the assembling of ourselves ... ~ Hebrews 10:24-25


┌─> Go more?   
Discouraged ?
└─> Go less?    

If you donít enjoy worship on earth,
you will not get that opportunity on the other side.
Bad decisions lead to bad results.


3. Cut Yourself Off From Loved
    Ones; ~ Isolation

Christians need one another!

God has not cast away His people whom He foreknew. ... ~ Romans 11:2-4

We need to lean on one another.
Going it alone leads to failure.


Loneliness = Misery

Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. ~ Galatians 6:2

~ Though we may feel alone, we are not!
We all breath air and bear the common problems of life.


"Yet I have reserved seven thousand in Israel, all whose knees
have not bowed to Baal, ..." ~ 1st Kings 19:18


Pity Party: How to Fail
1. Worry More, Pray Less
2. Find an Alternative to Worship
3. Cut Yourself Off From Loved Ones;
    ~ Isolation

... the LORD! For He has delivered the life of the poor
From the hand of evildoers. ~ Jeremiah 20:11-13


All carry a cross, will you look up or down?

... pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in
despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 4:8-10


If we choose God, His light will radiate from within.

The POWER of GOD is in each of us pursuing His truths.

But it is good to be zealous in a good thing always, and not only
when I am present with you. ~ Galatians 4:18


I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call
of God in Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 3:14


And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, ...
~ Colossians 3:23-24


... do it with your might; for there is no work or device or knowledge
or wisdom in the grave where you are going. ~ Ecclesiastes 9:10


... not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; ...
~ Romans 12:10-11


Follow God to Heaven.

The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, And he who wins souls is wise.
~ Proverbs 11:30


A true witness delivers souls, But a deceitful witness speaks lies.
~ Proverbs 14:25


... Who brings glad tidings of good things, Who proclaims salvation,
Who says to Zion, "Your God reigns!" ~ Isaiah 52:7


... who are wise shall shine Like the brightness of the firmament, And those
who turn many to righteousness Like the stars forever ... ~ Daniel 12:3


Share the Hope in which we stand.

... I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you,
which also you received and in which you stand, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 15:1


... some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping
of the saints for the work of ministry, ... ~ Ephesians 4:11-13


... be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work
of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. ~ 2nd Timothy 4:2-5


Commit your way to the LORD, Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass. ~ Psalm 37:5


Believe and it will be.

... not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says
will be done, ... ~ Mark 11:20-24


But He said to them, "Where is your faith?" And they were afraid,
and marveled, ... ~ Luke 8:25


And the apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith." ~ Luke 17:5

"... Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."
~ John 20:26-29


True faith is unending.

For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith;
as it is written, "The just shall live by faith." ~ Romans 1:17


... "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart" (that is,
the word of faith which we preach): ... ~ Romans 10:8


So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
~ Romans 10:17


Open your heart to His word.

... for whatever is not from faith is sin. ~ Romans 14:22-23

And now abide faith, hope, love, these three;
but the greatest of these is love. ~ 1st Corinthians 13:13


For we walk by faith, not by sight. ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:7

The greatest in man is in his acts of faith.

... a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ,
... ~ Galatians 2:16


For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. ~ Galatians 3:26

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails
anything, but faith working through love. ~ Galatians 5:6


There is power through the word.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness,
goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. ... ~ Galatians 5:22-23


For by grace you have been saved through faith, and not of yourselves,
it is the gift of God, ... ~ Ephesians 2:8


... that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. ~ Ephesians 3:14-19

Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were
also called and have confessed the good confession ... ~ 1st Timothy 6:12


It takes a committed heart to get to heaven.

But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been
assured of, knowing from whom you have learned ... ~ 2nd Timothy 3:14-15


... ... let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, ...
~ Hebrews 10:22


Now faith is the substance of things hoped for;
the evidence of things not seen. ~ Hebrews 11:1


... let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto
Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, ... ~ Hebrews 12:1-2


Failure is not an option.

... ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like
a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. ~ James 1:5-6


Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. ~ James 2:17

Do you see that faith was working together with his works,
and by works faith was made perfect? ~ James 2:22


You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.
~ James 2:24


Do you act on your faith?

And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up.
And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. ~ James 5:15


Hope deferred makes the heart sick, But when the desire comes,
it is a tree of life. ~ Proverbs 13:12


"... we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless
at Your word I will let down the net." ~ Luke 5:5


Power is in our hope and thanks be to a faithful Creator.

THE POWER OF GOD HAS ALWAYS BEEN

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9/22/2008 ~ How Men Repent


                                    \ | /
The gospel of Jesus Christ is for ALL.
                                    / | \


... "This Man receives sinners and eats with them." ~ Luke 15:1-2
└─> Jesus was THE master teacher.                       

Jesus never promised financial wealth to anyone for giving.
Never wrote Chicken Soup for the Soul motivational pamphlets.
He never had a group of introducing musicians follow Him around.

~ He spoke in parables to teach Compassion, Mercy, and Love.

He drew sinners and the afflicted to Him for
He had answers that eluded the religious leaders.


And they were astonished at His teaching, for He taught them
as one having authority, and not as the scribes. ~ Mark 1:22


And they were astonished at His teaching, for His word was with authority.
~ Luke 4:32


~ Parable of the lost sheep.

"... more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine
just persons who need no repentance." ~ Luke 15:3-7


~ Parable of the lost coin.

"... there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner
who repents." ~ Luke 15:8-10


~ Parable of the Prodigal son.
About how men repent.


"... the younger of them said to his father, 'Father, give me the portion
of goods that falls to me.' ..." ~ Luke 15:11-32


God came to tell us how we live and how He wants us to live.

... "Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one
can do these signs that You do unless God is with him." ~ John 3:1-2


The officers answered, "No man ever spoke like this Man!" ~ John 7:46

And so we are blessed in His light, His truth, His teachings.

1. Boy Meets World:

Younger son Ė wishes father dead so he can have his money, canít wait.

"... and there wasted his possessions with prodigal living." ~ Luke 15:13
└─> Excessively wasteful with loose living.     

Prodical = wasteful, reckless, extravagant, uncontrolled

He could not satisfy his ravenous hunger. <─┐
"But when he had spent all, there arose a severe famine in that land,
and he began to be in want." ~ Luke 15:14

He didnít have the peace of God. <─┘                                    

The world enslaves you and it can never satisfy you.


"... sent him into his fields to feed swine." ~ Luke 15:15
Freedom in the world leads to chains. <─┘                         

There comes a time where you will ask,
"Why I was in such a hurry to leave home?"
~ The world will eat you alive.  


"And he would gladly have filled his stomach with the pods
that the swine ate, and no one gave him anything." ~ Luke 15:16


Sin is the seed of oblivion.

2. Boy Leaves World:

"But when he came to himself, ..." ~ Luke 15:17
               └─> Repents.

"... 'I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, "Father,
I have sinned against heaven and before you, ..." ~ Luke 15:18

└─> Sees the truth.                                                 

" '... Make me like one of your hired servants." ' ~ Luke 15:19
└─> Desires to serve; determination.

~ Go home while your Father waits for you.  

And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, ...
~ Hebrews 9:27


... For the living know that they will die; But the dead know nothing,
And they have no more reward, ... ~ Ecclesiastes 9:4-5


While there is breath, there is still hope.

3. Father Meets Boy:

                    He saw what the world had done to him. <─┐
"... he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, ..."
~ Luke 15:20


"... let us eat and be merry; for this my son was dead and is alive again;
he was lost and is found. ..." ~ Luke 15:21-24

                      └─> He restored him gladly.

~ The younger son was restored.  

... that we should be called children of God! ... ~ 1st John 3:1

Rejoice for the Lord brings back His own!

Seek the LORD while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near.
~ Isaiah 55:6


Jesus took upon Himself all of our ugliness
~ so that we could come back to Him.  
Is it in you to return to God?
God wants our genuine love as our choice, not as a fearful act.


1. COME TO YOURSELF
2. LOVE AND WANT GOD

God Waits for us ALL.

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9/23/2008 ~ The Devil Revealed


Defiance and not resisting the Devil is an act against God.

... a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; ... ~ Job 1:1-22

Who is working behind the scenes and with what power?

... You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended
by the Lord - that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful. ~ James 5:11


We need to clearly see how our great adversary the Devil operates.
We need to know so as to arm ourselves against the Devil.
The Devil makes his living where we live.
└─> He is near.                           

1. Makes his living where we live.

"... 'Depart from Me, you cursed, into everlasting fire prepared
for the devil and his angels: ...' " ~ Matthew 25:41


The Devil will eventually be cast out, but for now, he is near.

... And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
~ Revelation 20:10


In the end, all things are subject to God.

... Satan answered the LORD and said, "From going to and fro
on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it." ~ Job 1:7


Satan for now surrounds us.

... your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion,
seeking whom he may devour. ~ 1st Peter 5:8


"Now is the judgment of this world;
now the ruler of this world will be cast out." ~ John 12:31


Jesus calls him the ruler of this world
and Paul calls him the god of this age.


... whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 4:3-4


... you dwell, where Satan's throne is. ... ~ Revelation 2:13

He prowls and lurks among us all.
The Devil was able to find the first man and woman,
as well as being able to tempt Jesus in the wilderness,
~ and so he easily finds us all.


2. He knows whatís going on in your world.

                               ↘ BLESSED
The Devil knew Job and accused his circumstances in praising God.
The Devil is always awake, watching and waiting:


SATAN = ACCUSER

The Devil is not all knowing as our God is, but he is a keen observer.
What would make you turn your back on God?
He will use what he will against us.


Anger
Pride
Worldliness
Fear
Discouragement
Pleasure
──┐
      
      
      The Devil knows what makes us tick.
      
      
──┘

... My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless
and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil? ... ~ Job 2:1-10


3. His power is real.

And the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, all that he has is in your power; ...
~ Job 1:12


"In your power"

And the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, he is in your hand, but spare his life."
~ Job 2:6


Do you see the irony?
God gets all of the blame and Satan gets none of the credit.
~ Blame Satan, not God.


We know that we are of God, and the whole world
lies under the sway of the wicked one. ~ 1st John 5:19


... Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand
against the wiles of the devil. ... ~ Ephesians 6:10-13


The word of God allows us to Withstand the schemes of the Devil.

And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light.
~ 2nd Corinthians 11:14


The Devil is always scheming,
he is crafty, sneaky; a behind the scenes scoundrel.
His power is set, limited, by God or he would kill us all.


... Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. ... ~ Luke 22:31-32

We are asked to overcome the snares of the Devil.

Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.
~ 1st Corinthians 10:12


Be the rock you are called to be in the Kingdom of God.

No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man;
but God is faithful, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 10:13


God knows you are strong enough to stand against Satan.
The Lord takes no pleasure in the fall of a man.
Do we abandon our faith in God?
Why would God sacrifice His only begotten Son to save us
if only to set a trap so that we would fall back into sin?
God has faith in us to win for Him if we trust in His power to save.


... who desires all men to be saved
and to come to the knowledge of the truth. ~ 1st Timothy 2:4


Trust in Godís power to deliver you, save you.

4. The devil wonít quit until you do.

Now when the devil had ended every temptation,
he departed from Him until an opportune time. ~ Luke 4:13


The Devil does not care how or when he can get you,
he is looking for you to turn your heart away from God.


... word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one
comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. ~ Matthew 13:19


Jesus wants all to come to His garden.
"The seed is the word of God"
↙     ↓     ↘           ↓

Good     Thorny     Rocky     Wayside -
      Soil         Soil         Soil     impenetrable
↓        ↓        ↓           
   Brought forth Life:          Dormant
Germinated                     
         ↘        ↘      ↓  
Fruitful                                 Unfruitful
(Romans 6:22)                        (Romans 6:21)
/ | \                                            

"... good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares
are the sons of the wicked one. ..." ~ Matthew 13:38-43


Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
~ James 4:7


The Devil has nothing to loose but your soul.

● Hold fast to your integrity.
● Persevere all the way.
● Always worship God.

... "Naked I came from my mother's womb, And naked shall I return there.
The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away;
Blessed be the name of the Lord." ~ Job 1:21


The Devil Revealed:
1. Makes his living where we live.
2. He knows whatís going on in your world.
3. His power is real.
4. The devil wonít quit until you do.

... does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. ...
~ John 8:44


"These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, ..."
~ Revelation 17:14


And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume
with the breath of His mouth and destroy ... ~ 2nd Thessalonians 2:8


Those who are with our Lord will share in His victory.
God has not abandoned His creation to the rule of the Devil.
Who are you fighting for ~ or who are you fighting against?


"... whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny
before My Father who is in heaven." ~ Matthew 10:32-33


He who sins is of the devil, ... For this purpose the Son of God was
manifested, that He might destroy ... ~ 1st John 3:8


Are you with the lamb or the dragon?

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9/24/2008 ~ The Greatest Day


The first time Jesus came as Savior, the second, it will be as Judge.

"Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took
their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. ... ~ Matthew 25:1-13


What would you consider the Greatest Day in your Life?

● High School graduation?
● Finished college and started your career?
● The day you were married?
● When your children were born?
● When you were baptized?

IT will be the same for us ALL.
~ The Greatest day will be our day of Judgment.
Will you be ready?
No one can get ready for you.
5 wise <─┘└─> 5 foolish  


Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour
in which the Son of Man is coming." ~ Matthew 25:13


1. No one can get ready for you.

"And the foolish said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil, ..."
~ Matthew 25:8-9


You can not borrow salvation.
How can you borrow readiness or spiritual preparedness?


And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, ...
~ Hebrews 9:27


We have an individual appointment with our Creator.
                └─> Judgment Day.  


For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each
one may receive the things done in the body, ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:10


... obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence,
work out your own salvation ... ~ Philippians 2:12


   It will be based on what you did.   
It wonít be perfect, ~ but did you come to pursue our Fatherís will?
Can you risk not being ready?


2. Preparation must not be put off.

The greatest day of our lives is coming.

"... you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour
you do not expect." ~ Matthew 24:42-44


For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord
so comes as a thief in the night. ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:2

Life is UNCERTAIN.
Our life is too important to just carelessly loose it.


Self-control
Godliness
Brotherly Love
──┐
      
      Takes a Lifetime of training
      
──┘
                                              
One can not just put these on at the last moment.

"Remember Lot's wife." ~ Luke 17:32

"... likewise the one who is in the field, let him not turn back."
~ Luke 17:30-31


To look back is to turn back.
One can not long for what is being left behind in the world.
Have you ever seen a hearse pulling a U-haul trailer?


... "No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back,
is fit for the kingdom of God." ~ Luke 9:62


Jesus is coming; donít miss Him for the world!

PREPARATION = POWER

A storm is coming Ö                                                               
                                Ö It will be the wind of His vengeance.
You canít put off preparedness.
Does the Lord know that you love Him?
~ Serve Him, praise Him, obey Him? ~
Are you ready right now?


3. The judgeís decision is final.

"... and the door was shut." ~ Matthew 25:10

No late sitting will be permitted or allowed.

"... 'Lord, Lord, open to us!' But he answered and said,
'Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.' " ~ Matthew 25:11-12


~ They were not ready for the greatest day.

... 'I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me,
all you workers of iniquity.' ... ~ Luke 13:25-28


"Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom
of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. ...
~ Matthew 7:21-23


We must follow what God prescribes in His word.
There is a reason the Bible has been preserved for us.
The Lord expects us to prepare for Him.


... in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God,
and on those who do not obey the gospel ... ~ 2nd Thessalonians 1:6-9


Not obeying God is just as not knowing Him.
Opportunities will be over, destinies will be sealed, eternity will begin.
Do you eagerly wait at the door to eternity?


1. No one can get ready for you.
2. Preparation must not be put off.
3. The judgeís decision is final.

"... Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful
over a few things, ... Enter into the joy of your lord." ~ Matthew 25:22-23


Thanks be to my good friend in Christ, ďBubbaĒ Gerald Edward Garner.
There is a day coming where our hearts will declare our name.

"To him who overcomes I will give some of the hidden manna to eat.
... a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it."
~ Revelation 2:17


"And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me,
to give every one according to his work." ~ Revelation 22:12


A most personal exhilarating day is coming for us all.

"He who believes and is baptized will be saved;
but he who does not believe will be condemned." ~ Mark 16:16


~ All sins can be erased and you can pursue God today and so forward.
The alternative is you can put off what you will come to regret.


... "Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted."
~ Matthew 15:13


Truth is the root of the soul, are you planted in Him?

PREPARE FOR HIS ARRIVAL.

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10/5/2008 ~ Painless Repentance?


ADULTRY
  ┌─> An example of something bad.          

... But the thing that David had done displeased the LORD.
~ 2nd Samuel 11:1-27


It was a low time for Davidís life and for Israel.

... So David said to Nathan, "I have sinned against the LORD." ...
~ 2nd Samuel 12:1-13


David tried to manipulate his sin as if it were nothing.
Sin is opposed to God. 
      └─> Things eternally damnable.
~ David needed to confront his sin. 


... those who had practiced magic brought their books together
and burned them in the sight of all. ... ~ Acts 19:18-19

 └─> They admitted they were doing wrong.        

~ It is hard to confront self sin.

... warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity
to the law of sin which is in my members. ... ~ Romans 7:20-25


Do not be deceived: "Evil company corrupts good habits."
~ 1st Corinthians 15:33


Do we desire godly associations?

... exhort one another daily, while it is call "Today," lest any of you
be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. ... ~ Hebrews 3:12-15


Denial can stop one from doing the will of God.

"... you did not afterward relent and believe him." ~ Matthew 21:28-32

It is a sin not to admit oneís sin; ~ oblivious to it.

SIN = MISSING THE MARK

Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.
~ 1st John 3:4


One can not escape the judgment of God.
Debt does not go away if it opposes God.
No pain, no gain.


Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding;
He who does so destroys his own soul. ~ Proverbs 6:32


... "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do." ...
~ Luke 23:34


We must reconcile our sin with God.
People admit their sin but donít want to tell anyone.
God has offered to wash our sins away and to start new.


... "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of
Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; ... ~ Acts 2:37-38


BELIEVE GOSPEL
REPENT OF YOUR SIN
ACKNOWLEDGE YOUR SIN

"... for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost."
~ Luke 19:10


Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man
with his deeds, and have put on the new man ... ~ Colossians 3:9-11


Repentance is a difficult thing to achieve.

" 'For you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel,
before the sun.' " ~ 2nd Samuel 12:12


It is painful to publically admit sin.

... Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered. Blessed
is the man to whom the LORD does not impute iniquity, ... ~ Psalm 32:1-5


... my sin is always before me. Against You, You only, have I sinned,
And done this evil in Your sight ... ~ Psalm 51:1-4


When David sinned, he acknowledged his sin to God and to all of Israel.
~ Confess your faults and you will be set free.


STEPS TO FORGIVENESS:
1. REPENT
2. ACKNOWLEDGE
3. CONFESS
4. FORGIVENESS
   Psalm 32:3-4
   Psalm 32:5
   Psalm 32:5
   Psalm 32:5

... though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of
doctrine to which you were delivered. And having been set free from sin,
you became slaves of righteousness. ... ~ Romans 6:17-22


Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another,
that you may be healed. ... ~ James 5:16


REPENTANCE = CHANGE
Turn Your Life Around

... Zacchaeus who was a chief tax collector, and he was rich.
And he sought to see who Jesus was, ... ~ Luke 19:2-10


... Though hard, I can do this.

... whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father
who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, ... ~ Matthew 10:32-33


Sin is what wars against your soul; do you lean on God or yourself?

"... sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it."
~ Genesis 4:7


Repentance is fleeing from the Devil everyday.

... learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls. ... ~ Matthew 11:28-30


Do you desire eternal life?
The burden of sin is not bearable.
Would you choose to bear your own burden.
Put on the burden of righteousness and holiness.

CHOICE: WORLDLINESS OR RIGHTEOUSNESS?
~ YOU WILL KNOW.

"... pray God if perhaps the thought of your heart may be forgiven you."
~ Acts 8:22


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10/12/2008 ~ Love Not the World


Do not love the world or the things in the world. ... ~ 1st John 2:15-17

The world is powerful.
The prince of the air has influence to have success over you.
Many have parents that are unqualified.
It really is the individual against the world.


The world sells as:
Lust of the Flesh
Lust of the Eyes
Pride of Life

... good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes,
and a tree desirable to make one wise, ... ~ Genesis 3:6-7


Eve Fell Victim:
1. Good Food
2. Pleasant of Eye
3. Be Wiser

These six things the LORD hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him: ...
~ Proverbs 6:16-19


1. A proud look
2. A lying tongue
3. Hands that shed innocent blood
4. A heart that devises wicked plans
5. Feet that are swift in running to evil
6. A false witness who speaks lies
7. One who sows discord among brethren

... Her house is the way to hell, Descending to the chambers of death.
~ Proverbs 7:25-27


Are you using what God approves of?

... through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, ...
~ Romans 5:12


Do you have boundaries or does anything go?

... Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, ... ~ 1st John 3:8-10

... Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world
makes himself an enemy of God. ~ James 4:4


... But God said to him, Fool! This night your soul will be required of you;
then whose will those things be which you have provided? ... ~ Luke 12:16-21


... "Children, how hard it is for those who trust in riches
to enter the kingdom of God!" ~ Mark 10:24


"For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world,
and is himself destroyed or lost?" ~ Luke 9:25


"... Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?" ~ Matthew 16:26

... Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth,
where moth and rust destroy ... ~ Matthew 6:19-21


... he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who
sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. ~ Galatians 6:7-8


The word of God should be apparent to all.
His word fills us with knowledge beholding wisdom.
We need to overcome our foolishness.


"... Sodom: ... had pride, fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither
did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy." ~ Ezekiel 16:49


... The rich man also died and was buried. And being in torments in Hades, he
lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus ... ~ Luke 16:19-31


Pride is sophisticated Ė the few, the proud.

PRIDE = STELTHY SIN

... to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded
is life and peace. ... ~ Romans 8:5-8


... under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honor, so that the
name of God and His doctrine may not be blasphemed ... ~ 1st Timothy 6:1-2


We need to honor the master and do not try to outsmart him.
We need to humbly wait for God.


They have closed up their fat hearts; With their mouths they speak proudly.
~ Psalm 17:10


... proud, knowing nothing, but is obsessed with disputes and arguments
over words, from which come envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions,
useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, ...
~ 1st Timothy 6:3-5


... without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong,
haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God ... ~ 2nd Timothy 3:1-5


... flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love,
patience, gentleness. ~ 1st Timothy 6:10-11


What do you pursue?
Do you make time to put the word (Way) before yourself?
It is hard to serve a greater purpose.


Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. ~ Colossians 3:2

Many if not most want to fit in.
One does not fit in with God if you ignore His will.
The world is so despicable that one can buy sin on credit;
Easily obtained abominations such as pornography and alcohol, etc.
~ Is your heart heavy with the filth of sin?


"... for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost."
~ Luke 19:10


Pride stops one from being contrite in heart.
One needs to agree with God that sin is not fun.
Choices we make as a people will set the course for our children.
~ As the family goes, so goes the nation.
~ As the family goes, so goes the church.


... not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?
Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 6:9-10


... whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, ...
~ Romans 1:28-32


... sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake ...
~ Revelation 21:7-8


... those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
~ Galatians 5:19-21


Clear list from God; - of the World:
All Unrighteousness
Abominable
Adulterers
Backbiters
Blasphemers
Boasters
Contentions
Covetousness
Cowardly
Deceit
Disobedient to Parents
Dissensions
Drunkards
Envy
Evil-mindedness
Extortioners
Fornicators
Greediness
Haters of God
Hatred
Heresies
Homosexuals
Idolaters
Inventors of Evil Things
Jealousies
Lewdness
Liars
Maliciousness
Murders
Outbursts of Wrath
Proud
Revelries
Selfish Ambitions
Sexually Immoral
Sodomites
Sorcerers
Strife
Thieves
Unbelieving
Undiscerning
Uncleanness
Unforgiving
Unloving
Unmerciful
Untrustworthy
Violent
Wickedness
Whisperers

We know what God has said.

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10/19/2008 ~ Grace and Faith


... "Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness."
~ Romans 4:1-3


What makes you saved today?                        
                                  What makes you not?


... so loved the world that He gave His only begotton Son, that whoever
believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." ~ John 3:16


One has to be under His grace.
    / | \
For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,
teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live
soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, ... ~ Titus 2:11-14


It is the Grace of God that gives us salvation.
~ There is no other God of salvation.
Man does not set the terms of pardon.


... the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. ~ Romans 11:28-29

"... who has first given to Him And it shall be repaid to him?" ...
~ Romans 11:33-36


Is one saved by acts of goodness?
Deeds of good do not earn salvation.
We are objects of His mercy.


... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, ... ~ Romans 3:23

Our deeds leave us lost.
No one deserves to go to heaven.


... Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith
apart from the deeds of the law. ~ Romans 3:21-28


GRACE = UNMERITED FAVOR

Not one person that goes to hell will not deserve it.

  GRACE
  DEEDS → LOST  

One can not count on acts of goodness to inherit eternal life.

Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt. ...
~ Romans 4:4-8


We need forgiveness for salvation.

... Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered. ...
~ Psalm 32:1-5


David needed forgiveness.

... my sins, And blot out all my iniquities. Create in me a clean heart,
O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me. ... ~ Psalm 51:9-14


For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life
in Christ Jesus our Lord. ~ Romans 6:23


... Do not trust in these lying words, saying, The temple of the Lord, the
temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord are these. ... ~ Jeremiah 7:3-11


One can not just depend on listening to others.

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
~ James 1:22


  LAW
  FAITH → OBEY  

"But why do you call Me 'Lord, Lord,' and not do the things which I say?"
~ Luke 6:46


It is tough to turn from temptations that gnaw at the flesh.

... "A dog returns to his own vomit," and, "a sow, having washed,
to her wallowing in the mire." ~ 2nd Peter 2:22


No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man;
but God is faithful, who will not allow ... ~ 1st Corinthians 10:13


Is your Love of God fathomless?

... if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. ...
~ Galatians 5:16-26


It is not faith only that saves and not once saved, always saved.
Our opportunity is to have faith all of the time.
Do we abandon God and His living word?
It takes faith to believe in God.
Timeless and ceaseless Love.


... "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent."
~ John 6:28-29


Righteous acts of faith as a continuous work in progress.
Stand up for God.


... of the righteousness of the faith which he had while still uncircumcised, ...
~ Romans 4:9-12


Abraham was saved before being circumcised.
~ Circumcision does not save and is useless without faith.


... not ... through the law, but through the righteousness of faith. ...
~ Romans 4:13-18


The law does not save for no one could keep the law.
But our Lord Jesus Christ!


Trust in the Lord = Righteousness

... He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was
strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, ... ~ Romans 4:19-22


Does your heart release into His eternal fold?

... by the fear of the Lord one departs from evil. When a man's ways
please the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. ...
~ Proverbs 16:3-8


"I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance."
~ Luke 5:32


If one wants the gift of grace, one must have
repentance and righteous works, as He calls for.


Let Your priests be clothed with righteousness,
And let Your saints shout for joy. ~ Psalm 132:9


... granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the
fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. ~ Revelation 19:5-8


"... unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and
Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven." ~ Matthew 5:20


1. REPENTANCE
2. RIGHTEOUSNESS
3. SALVATION

... to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead,
who was delivered up because of our offenses, ... ~ Romans 4:23-25


His blood paid for our access:
(Justified)                   (Mercy)    
Righteousness                Through      
   ↗     ↘         ↙       ↖   
WORK FAITH GRACE
   ↘     ↗         ↘       ↗   
    Compleated                   Access           
(Believe)                   (Justified)  

"Look to Me, and be saved, All you ends of the earth!
For I am God, and there is no other." ~ Isaiah 45:22


Do we really l◎◎k to God?

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10/19/2008 ~ Is Our Best Good Enough?


  HOLY?  

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation,
His own special people, ... ~ 1st Peter 2:9


What does God expect of His royal priesthood today?

... And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. ...
~ Exodus 19:5-6


'Consecrate yourselves therefore, and be holy, for I am the LORD your God.'
~ Leviticus 20:7


"... the LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for Himself, ..."
~ Deuteronomy 7:6


So what is expected of Christians today?
We are a royal and chosen people.
~ To set apart and make holy.
How do we do this?

His Apostles have set forth what we need to know.


... fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness,
faithfulness, ... self-control. Against such there is no law. ~ Galatians 5:22-23


FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT

Many of us are lacking in all His called for character traits.

... always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you
a reason for the hope that is in you, ... ~ 1st Peter 3:15


God expects each of us to have His knowledge.
We need to realize are failings and work on are weaknesses.
Maturity comes through experience and knowledge.
We need to be open and eager for improvement.

Paul rebuked Peter and Peter changed.


... And the rest of the Jews also played the hypocrite with him, ...
~ Galatians 2:11-14


We need to change or align our hearts with Godís own word.
We need to use all of our talents to glorify God.
Are you steadfast for Him?


... but the answer of a good conscience toward God),
through the resurection of Jesus Christ, ... ~ 1st Peter 3:21-22


How committed are you in serving God?
Does your faith rely on trusting Him?


... for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able
to keep what I have committed to Him ... ~ 2nd Timothy 1:12


... him who has a contrite and humble spirit, To revive the spirit of the
humble, And to revive the heart of the contrite ones. ... ~ Isaiah 57:15-16


Who is a contrite one?
~ A repentant heart that wishes to change from a sinful past.


The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit. ~ Psalm 34:18


CONTRITE SPIRIT = REPENTANT HEART

It is by Godís mercy that we are saved.
Can you see your acts of faith bearing fruit?
Are you growing in knowing the Lord?


... A broken and a contrite heart - These, O God, You will not despise.
~ Psalm 51:17


Do you defend the faith with you lifestyle?

For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 7:10


... As in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey
is better than sacrifice, ... ~ 1st Samuel 15:22-23


Has God changed His mind commanding obedience?

"... learn what this means: I desire mercy and not sacrifice ..." ~ Matthew 9:13

... the LORD does not see as man sees, for man looks at the outward
appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart. ~ 1st Samuel 16:7


How can we love God if we are not
repentant of what we have done wrong?
~ Then and only then can we work for Him.  


"If you love Me, keep My commandments." ~ John 14:15

... "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him,
..." ~ John 14:23-24


"You are My friends if you do whatever I command you." ~ John 15:14

God expects us to follow His outline.

... is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one
will be blessed in what he does. ~ James 1:21-25


God wants us all to be fruitful for Him, doers.

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected
knowledge, I also will reject you from being priest for Me; ... ~ Hosea 4:6


There are numerous distractions today
~ causing us to be lacking in His knowledge.


For I desire mercy and not sacrifice, And the knowledge of God
more than burnt offerings. ~ Hosea 6:6


... Return to the LORD your God, For He is gracious and merciful, ...
~ Joel 2:12-13


                                     ┌─> Whole mind.
God looks for us to turn to Him.
                                      └─> Whole spirit.

He loves us dearly.


... true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth;
for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. ... ~ John 4:23-24


Do we have passion for what God is and what He wants?

Holy Priesthood = Spiritual Sacrifices of the Self

... Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has
made us kings and priests to His God and Father, ... ~ Revelation 1:5-6


By and through Jesus He has made us kings and priests of His kingdom.
Do we reflect His glory?
Both men and women hold this holy priesthood.


... there is neither male or female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
~ Galatians 3:27-28


... who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once
were not a people but are now the people of God, ... ~ 1st Peter 2:9-10


Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not
need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. ~ 2nd Timothy 2:15


1. Knowledge is Key to our Salvation
2. A Repentant Heart; Walking the Talk

Do you live to know Him?
~ In God We Trust?


... he who comes to God must believe that He is, ... ~ Hebrews 11:6

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10/26/2008 ~ Not Remember Jesus?


... when you come together in one place, it is not to eat the Lord's Supper.
... ~ 1st Corinthians 11:17-26


Have we just become so casual about God and His will?
He is and was serious, are we?


"... For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many
for the remission of sins." ~ Matthew 26:26-28


It means to drink and eat of all of Him, either while wake or sleep.
Live to Him.


... For we, though many, are one bread and one body;
for we all partake of that one bread. ~ 1st Corinthians 10:15-17


COMMUNE
SHARE

I share in what Christ is ~ and all that He is.
Eternity will end or begin for a soul in regards to if you do or not Ö


"... one will be taken and the other left." ~ Luke 17:34-36

... "This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me." ...
~ Luke 22:14-20


We need to assemble for Christ and not for us or any of our petty needs.
~
Do we care about Him?
To remember Him, we need to read about it.
~ Are we shallow on the Lordís word?


... eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will
be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. ... ~ 1st Corinthians 11:27-34


Many do not remember the Lord
when partaking in the Lordís Supper, making us unworthy.
~ Fix yourself and make peace so that you may commune with Christ.  
Open your heart freely to God.


"And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors." ~ Matthew 6:12

"... First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift."
~ Matthew 5:23-24


Take Pause to Remember:
  HIS LIFE
      HIS DEATH  

It is easy for oneís mind to wander.

For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you
proclaim the Lord's death till He comes. ~ 1st Corinthians 11:26


Often infers frequency.

Some define frequency as:

● Every Day
● Once a Year
● Every 3 Months
● Twice a Year ~ Xmas / Easter  

Now on the first day of the week, when the disciples
came together to break bread, ... ~ Acts 20:6-11


They gathered on the first day of the week to remember Christ.

  1st Day of the week ≠ The New Christian Sabbath  

... Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall
according to the same example of disobedience. ~ Hebrews 4:9-11


Christ is now our Sabbath; our rest is in Him.

And He said to them, "The Son of Man is also Lord of the Sabbath."
~ Luke 6:5


... looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, ... ~ Hebrews 12:2

"Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy." ~ Exodus 20:8
└─> It does not say remember every Sabbath (Saturday).     

We come together to remember Him.
~ To proclaim Him until He comes and or we kneel before Him.  

┌─> Repent. 
But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread
and drink of the cup. ~ 1st Corinthians 11:28


For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks
judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. ~ 1st Corinthians 11:29


Do we actually share our hearts with God?

But do not forget to do good and to share,
for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. ~ Hebrews 13:16


To remember His Body is to find salvation.

We know that we have passed from death to life,
because we love the brethren. ... ~ 1st John 3:14


Unity.
Look within.
~ Take pause for Christ.  
It was divine sacrifice that gave us this.


We are healed when we rise to Him.

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10/26/2008 ~ God is in Control


... He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and
raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise ... ~ Daniel 2:20-23


GOD can do what He wants to.

1. BABALONIAN
2. MEDO-PERSIAN
3. GREECIAN
4. ROMAN - GOD'S KINGDOM ESTABLISHED

... the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed;
and the kingdom shall not be left to other people; it shall break in pieces
and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever. ~ Daniel 2:44-45


God has established His Kingdom on Earth.

... she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him
in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, ... ~ Luke 2:4-7


Jesus Christ has come to show us Godís will.

... "Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's,
and to God the things that are God's." ... ~ Matthew 22:17-22


Clearly, God and governments of men can exist simultaneously.

Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities.
For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities
that exist are appointed by God. ... ~ Romans 13:1-7


... the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance
of the saints in the light. ... ~ Colossians 1:12-13


None are exempt from His life given locally.

For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. ... ~ Romans 13:3

"... till he knew that the Most High God rules in the kingdom of men,
and appoints over it whomever He chooses." ~ Daniel 5:21


One can not challenge God.
It is God that ordains the governments of man.


... thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we
may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness ... ~ 1st Timothy 2:1-2


We may fail as the worldís most dominant power.

And believers were increasingly added to the Lord,
multitudes of both men and women, ... ~ Acts 5:14-15


Then the word of God spread, and the number of
the disciples multiplied greatly ... ~ Acts 6:7


In times of persecution, these are the times
~ of greatest strides forward in Christianity.  


... we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief. ~ Hebrews 3:7-19

God allows people to be tried so that they may turn to Him.

But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he became angry. ...
~ Jonah 4:1-2


~ One can not flee from God.

"... for You, O LORD, have done as it pleased You." ~ Jonah 1:14
                     God is in control. <─┘

Jonah knew God was in control regardless of his emotional state.


"The men of Nineveh will rise up in the judgment with this generation
and condemn it, because they repented ..." ~ Matthew 12:41


  Donít Comply = Against God
  Donít Comply = Still Goes Godís Way  

... For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance
will arise for the Jews from another place, ... ~ Esther 4:13-14


His will will be done.

Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.
~ James 4:17


It is sinful to walk away from doing good.
Be mindful of others and show mercy.

- widows
- elderly
- orphans
- handicapped

It is not Godís way for us to isolate ourselves away from the needy.

"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness,
and all these things shall be added to you." ~ Matthew 6:33


If we work for God, we invest in the eternal.

"Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, In the day of trial
in the wilderness, Where your fathers tested Me, ..." ~ Hebrews 3:8-9


The Israelites failed because they did not believe God.
We need to be active participants in what He has called us to.


 Abilities = Respond = Responsibility = Calling 

But let these also first be tested; then let them serve as deacons,
being found blameless. ... ~ 1st Timothy 3:10-11


Consider His ways and be wise.
Do not wait for God to do it for you.


... labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have
something to give him who has need. ~ Ephesians 4:28


Hiding will only reward one with nothing.

"Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things
you have need of before you ask Him." ~ Matthew 6:8


Do you fail to see that is all in you, and not of or because of others?
This is knowing self and responsibility to God.


"This day the Lord your God commands you to observe these statutes
and judgments; therefore you shall be careful to observe them with
all your heart and with all your soul. ..." ~ Deuteronomy 26:16-17


Now "If the righteous one is scarcely saved,
Where will the ungodly and sinner appear?" ~ 1st Peter 4:18


Thank God if you can obtain salvation by the edge of your fingernails;
claw, climb, whatever you can, for life eternal waits for those faithful.
Assuredly, confidence builds as one delves into scripture.


... if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God.
~ 1st John 3:21


He wants to know our faith.
Pray if it all depends on you, be faithful; righteous to Him.
As a babe suckling on the roof of heaven, glory is from Him.


No escape when reckoning comes due,  
ALL WILL SHAMEFULLY KNEEL BEFORE HIM.


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11/3/2008 ~ To Not Divorce; Battle of the Sexes


... "For the LORD God of Israel says That He hates divorce, ...
~ Malachi 2:14-16


Do we believe in God and what Jesus said?
Are we willing to believe in what He said about marriage?
 It can be a battle to see things alike in a marriage. 
The sanctuary of our homes and families
definitely challenges the hopes for our success.
~ More people are just living together and marrying later in life,
because of all the turmoil we have and are experiencing as a nation.

The numbers are grim among us.

Latest Figures:

1980 divorce rate
Current divorce rate
Singles Living together
Marriage rate drop
 = 
 = 
 = 
 = 
50%-55%
40%-45%
Tenfold increase since 1960s
30% less than 25 years ago
Americans are waiting 5 years longer to marry
Only 63% American children grow up with both biological parents

These figures are the same for believers as well as non-believers.
Children of divorce are leery about marriage
because of their own horrific broken homes.
Have we lost our abilities to work together?
How is it we have come to this? Ė A 50% FAILURE rate.
Is this what God intended for us?


Divorce after divorce ...

1st marriage divorce rate = 50%
2nd marriage divorce rate = Higher chance than 1st ...
3rd marriage divorce rate = Higher chance than 2nd ...

● Many choose just to live together.
● Many donít want to make a mistake, like their parents did.
● Many take marriage vows lightly, like their parents did?  

What did God do?
What did Man do?
What did Christ do?


┌─> In the image of God.                                                    
... in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. ...
~ Genesis 1:26-28


God tells us that man and woman are equal in Godís creation.
Each soul has intellectual, emotional, and volitional parts of life.


In the Image of God:
1. Understanding
2. Feelings
3. Power of Choice
↓ Equal ↓

God tells us we have the power to make it work.
He blessed them to work together.
~ Be fruitful and multiply.

God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.
→ Homosexuality is an abomination to God.  
God created constructive and creative goals.
God gave them responsibility to care for the garden.
It was not the environment that deterred man from following God.
~ Many use "if it were only different" excuses.


... "It is not good that man should be alone; ..." ~ Genesis 2:15-25

God said it was good nine times
before saying it is not good for man to be alone.


1. It was good ~ Genesis 1:4
2. It was good ~ Genesis 1:10
3. It was good ~ Genesis 1:12
4. It was good ~ Genesis 1:18
5. It was good ~ Genesis 1:21
6. It was good ~ Genesis 1:25
7. It was very good ~ Genesis 1:31
8. good for food ~ Genesis 2:9
9. gold of that land is good ~ Genesis 2:12

God is social and so is man.
People need people in their lives to cure loneliness.

Do you marry for:
1. Fulfillment? - Good Luck
2. Financial Gain? - Materialistic
3. Romance? - Poorest Reason


The deficiency in man was loneliness.
~ As Adam names the animals he looks for companionship.
Man and woman complement each other as one.


ONE FLESH = UNION OF MINDS AND HEARTS

Satisfaction comes through we are better together than apart.

JUST SEX = PAUPER

God is the origin of their helping distinctiveness.

Two are better than one, ... ~ Ecclesiastes 4:9-11

How can one be warm alone?
It involves a total commitment for life to one another.
When this commitment is kept, God is honored,
man and women fulfilled, and society protected.
~ This is what God did.


"... For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened,
and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." ... ~ Genesis 3:1-7


Satan tempts Eve by telling her God has denied her and she is limited.
Do we meditate on those things God has told us to do?
We have fallen into what God has told us not to do.
● Man fell into leadership upside-down.
~ This is what man did.


... Then the man said, "The woman whom You gave to be with me,
she gave me of the tree, and I ate." ~ Genesis 3:8-12


Adam fell from being a spiritual leader.
● Abdication of responsibility for being a spiritual leader.
Adam blamed God for giving him woman.


... For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but
the woman being deceived, fell into transgression ... ~ 1st Timothy 2:8-15


Our crisis is found in men not rising to be spiritually sound leaders.
Responsibility for their families.


... The woman said, "The serpent deceived me, and I ate." ~ Genesis 3:13

... It's not my fault.
Her desire overwhelmed her sense of Godís truth.


"... In pain you shall bring forth children; Your desire shall be for
your husband, And he shall rule over you." ~ Genesis 3:14-16


Her desire was to rule over man but he will have dominion over her.
Men have dominated oppressively over women
- especially where the Gospel is not taught.
Eve was submissive to Adam before they fell in to sin.
Women being submissive to men is not a result of sin, which many believe.
Sin led to oppressive consequences for both.


"... Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat of it
All the days of your life." ~ Genesis 3:17


Eve had the power of persuasion.
Women now carry pains of birth and the ground is cursed for man.
The union of two as one is the will of God.
Marriage is in the world to help us get to heaven.

What did Christ do?
- He reinforced Godís true and original intent.


"... He who made them at the beginning 'made them male and female,' ..."
~ Matthew 19:2-12


Christians should be able to understand God's way, not their way.

1. One Union
2. Permanent
3. Believe God  

... "Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce
your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. ..." ~ Matthew 19:8-9


We are able when we understand it is Godís way and not our way.

See that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,
redeeming the time, because the days are evil. ~ Ephesians 5:15-16


... submitting to one another in the fear of God. ~ Ephesians 5:21

We need to be subject to one another = Universal Principle
Humility; Servant attitude.
Sin and the unwillingness to repent is what cause divorce.


Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. ~ Ephesians 5:22

Do you resent the way of God?
To be submissive?
Our Father knows best.
~ Help him.


... just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives
be to their own husbands in everything. ... ~ Ephesians 5:23-25


HUSBANDS LOVE YOUR WIVES = COMMAND

Men need to sacrifice for their wives.
For centuries, men have beaten women to get what they want.
Jesus told us men will go to hell if they do not have sacrificial love.
Fear and intimidation of a woman will condemn a man.
Women submit easily to men that love them with their life.
Do we play our part as commanded by God?
Christ = Peace Maker


Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding,
giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, ... ~ 1st Peter 3:7-9


Make your homes one that is ruled by Christ
~ and you will enjoy the blessings


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11/4/2008 ~ Successful Civilization


Drink in the word of God, the fruits of His word.
It is important to our nation how children are raised.
Most parents love their children.


1. What do you want most for your children?
2. What is God's goal for your children?
3. What is the role you have for your children
     to reach God's goal for your children?
4. What part does the church play in helping
     your children reach that goal?
5. Do children copy and imitate their parents?
6. How do parents most effectively teach their
     children? - Problems to overcome.

What will they be?             Who will decide?
 Will they be lost or found? 

Servants-of-the-church, Teachers, Evangelists, Elders, Brothers, Fathers, Saved
or
Divorced, Drug-addicts, Atheists, Homosexuals, Murderers, Suicidal, Liars, Lost


Humility is admitting we do not know all and need help.

Who will decide:                                               
                           They will of their free will.


                                                              ┌─> Learn by imitating parents.
Parents have to stay strong.
└─> Genetics.                

Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old
he will not depart from it. ~ Proverbs 22:6

    └─> General principle.

Parents help train the conscience of their children.

... visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and
fourth generations of those who hate Me, ... ~ Deuteronomy 5:9

    └─> Long range benefits or curses will be passed on.

Children not being taught the knowledge of God
will have consequences long past any alive.
Spiritual forces set in motion do good or evil affecting thousands.
It is parents that inevitably teach their children.
Growing up is deciding to choose.


"... that you may fear the LORD your God, to keep all His statutes and
His commandments which I command you, ..." ~ Deuteronomy 6:2


... fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up
in the training and admonition of the Lord. ~ Ephesians 6:4


We have been commanded to teach our children.
~ It is a God given responsibility.


... "O my Lord, please let the Man of God whom You sent come to us again
and teach us what we shall do for the child who will be born." ~ Judges 13:8


Most young parents will ask, ďWhat do we do now?Ē
Some lacking the responsibility of life turn to darkness.
With one million abortions in our country per year,
can you imagine what God will do to this nation?


... these are the statutes and judgments which the LORD your God
has commanded to teach you, ... ~ Deuteronomy 6:1-9


What do you want for them?
● Obedience to authority.
● To fear the Lord and respect Him.
● To know Him.
● To stand in awe of His creation.
● To stand in awe of His justice and Love.
● That we might live a godly life all of our lives.

... observe them in the land which you are crossing over to possess, that you
may fear the LORD your God, to keep all His statutes ... ~ Deuteronomy 6:1-3


1. To do them, obey the commandments, God
2. To keep all His statues & commands
3. That your days may be prolonged

We want them to have obedience with a purpose.

... that it may be well with you, and that you may multiply greatly as the
LORD God of your fathers has promised ... ~ Deuteronomy 6:2-3


That it may be well with you.

For through the voice of the LORD Assyria will be beaten down,
As He strikes with the rod. ~ Isaiah 30:31


Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path. ~ Psalm 119:105

Do you want children to walk aimlessly in life?
~ Obedience with a proper motive.


"You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your strength." ~ Deuteronomy 6:5


Purpose.

... "You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your mind. ... ~ Matthew 22:36-40


Love God with all.

... love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith, ...
~ 1st Timothy 1:5


To teach them to love us, and more importantly, God.

TO TEACH THEM TO LOVE

Donít miss out on loving your parents.
Do not miss your opportunity to care for an aging parent.

How do you begin?
1. With your heart         


"And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart."
~ Deuteronomy 6:6


Actions speak louder than words
We can take them to church, but it is the word of God
in our lives that is the stronger teacher.

     2. Not perfect, but growing
Admit when youíre wrong and ask for forgiveness.


"... I have come that they may have life, and that they may
have it more abundantly." ~ John 10:10


We have life to give to our children.
Not frustration, death and disappointment,
~ It is life that we impart upon our children.


"... You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall
talk of them when you sit in your house, ..." ~ Deuteronomy 6:6-9


Life Linked words.
Let them see the words are in your life.
~ It has to be the living word.  
3. Living Words               


"... I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing;
therefore choose life, ..." ~ Deuteronomy 30:15-19


Choose life over death.
Choose reality.


"It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. ..." ~ John 6:63

"... 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but every word that proceeds
from the mouth of God.' " ~ Matthew 4:4


It is how we live, by the word of God; real living.

Sanctify them by your truth. Your word is truth. ~ John 17:17

TRUTH = REALITY

Reality of Fiction?   You decide.
If you treat the Bible as the living words of God you will prosper.


"... You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates."
~ Deuteronomy 6:7-9


Conduct your life as lived for the true living word.

... hear your words, but they do not do them; for with their mouth they
show much love, but their hearts pursue their own gain. ... ~ Ezekiel 33:30-33


... persecutions I endured. And out of them all the Lord delivered me.
~ 2nd Timothy 3:10-11


Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ. ~ 1st Corinthians 11:1

Your children, what will happen to them if they imitate you?
~ Accept the higher responsibility.
God intended for us to teach one another.
Set the example Ė keep trying.
1. Love God    
2. Love others
                          └─> Includes our children.

Let people see how much you love and respect God.
Challenge tradition if it lacks scriptural authority.

Five pillars of a Spiritual Life:

1. LOVE OF TRUTH,
2. GROWING CHARACTER
3. HUMILITY AND GLORY OF WORSHIP
4. JOY OF SACRIFICIAL SERVICE
5. STRENGTH OF CHRISTIAN FELLOWSHIP
What God wants of us.

... children of one's youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; ...
~ Psalm 127:3-5


Time is short, ~ eleven or twelve and off they go.

They will be alot like You ...

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11/5/2008 ~ Family is Home For All


Do you enjoy feeling Useful?    Do you feel Unity?

HOME = SPIRITUAL LIFE CENTER

"... at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door,
I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me." ~ Revelation 3:20


Have you asked the Lord to eat with you?
The Lord of the universe waits for you to call Him.
Is He genuinely a welcome member of your family?
He wants to share His love and trust with you.
~ Thank you for coming


"I am the living bread which came down from heaven.
If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; ..." ~ John 6:51


I am the meal.
Eat of me; - take Me in to your spirit.


... so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me. ... ~ John 6:54-58

If you take of Him, you will live forever.

"... The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life."
~ John 6:60-63


Who and how can one do it?
~ It is His inspired word that shall nourish and save us.


"... I have come that they may have life, and that
they may have it more abundantly." ~ John 10:10


Life through Him is the fullness of life.
He came to give of Himself, not to take as a thief.


... this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God,
and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. ~ John 17:1-3


He wants us to know Him intimately.
How deeply do you know someone well?
~ Itís not just knowing about Him, itís being involved with Him.

What makes a home?
                   └─> Our relationship with people.

A house does not necessarily make a home.
A home is where relationships are cherished and endure.
Church and homes work together supporting each other.
● Church stimulates love.  
~ Anchor upon truth.  


... consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not
forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, ... ~ Hebrews 10:24-25


We are commanded to stimulate one another in love with good words.
God's word is here to improve us continually to become better.
To stir up one's sincere mind.
To rouse up character.

Home is where the raw actions occur.
Donít live a duel life. <─┘     


What is Character?
Who You Think You Are
Who Others Think You Are 
Who God Knows You Are
... EGO
... REPUTATION
... CHARACTER

● Our goal is to put that tripod schizophrenic self all together  
in a unified person, that the person God knows that we are
is the person that other people know that we are
is the person that we know that we are
and this is a journey of a lifetime.
~ A transparent sincere person.


Sow a Thought
Sow an Action
Sow an Habit
Sow a Character    
Reap an Action
Reap a Habit
Reap a Character
Reap a Destiny

~ We need homes with thinkers ~
One's habits are best if sure and steady.
Encourage repeated good actions.
Character is the accumulation of how you habitually act.
Time can help us learn these good routines.

● Habitually kind.
● Habitually loving.
● Habitually patient.
Home is where you are taken in.
Do you look forward to going home? ~ Most do.
We are best served when it is the sanctuary of our hearts.


... He brings out those who are bound into prosperity;
But the rebellious dwell in a dry land. ~ Psalm 68:6


Children will never enjoy home if they are
rebellious against the authority of their parents.
There is a joy found from being on your own.
~ If you do not establish a home serving others, it will never be home.
Home only works in cooperation with each other.


REBELLION = STRIFE

Like a bird that wanders from its nest Is a man who wanders from his place.
~ Proverbs 27:8


Successful families help each other and want to be around each other.
It is not about the size of your home, it is about the size of your heart.
Home is where you belong and many search a lifetime for this.


Sanctify them by your truth. Your word is truth. ~ John 17:17

A spiritual home has:
1. Love of truth
Joyfully conforms to the boundaries of truth.
You shall know the truth and it shall set you free.

"And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
~ John 8:32


Whoever transgresses and does not abide in
the doctrine of Christ does not have God. ... ~ 2nd John 1:9


Rules and regulations are part of truth.
Christís teachings are the truth of the One Living God.
Clearly, those without Christ do not possess the truth.

2. Humbly Seeks the Audit of Others (Even and Especially Critics)


... communicated to them that gospel which I preach ... ~ Galatians 2:2

Audit = Examination
Truth has nothing to fear.
Put before others what you believe.
God does not will His word to be discussed defensively but beneficially.
Seek out the word through the study of scripture among yourselves.
~ Freedom and joy in pursuit of investigation.

3. Courageously Puts Truth Over Personal Advantage or Comfort


"Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. ..." ~ Matthew 10:34-35

... "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk
in darkness, but have the light of life." ~ John 8:12


If you are not willing to come inside the boundaries in the light
you will remain in the darkness separated from your family.
● One needs to be in the boundaries of God.
~ Love of truth, if it is, comes before all and anything else.

4. Confidently Holds to a Holy and Sincere Conscience


... testimony of our conscience that we conducted ourselves in the world
in simplicity and godly sincerity, ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 1:12


Strive to live in the truth.

... since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy,
we do not lose heart. ~ 2nd Corinthians 4:1


Truth Produces Homes of:
1. JOY
2. HUMILITY
3. COURAGE
4. CONFIDENCE

True Christians are willing to be examined for the sake of truth.
Do you sacrifice for truth?
Actions testify of the self over words.
● Love of God by loving others.
How do you know you love God?

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear,
because fear involves torment. ... ~ 1st John 4:18-21


One cannot love God without love of others.
~ Do not blame others but open your heart to overcome petty angers.
Skills of love goes beyond the self.
Love of brethren and compassion for oneís enemies.
You know you love God when you love others


... to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own
husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed. ~ Titus 2:3-5


A true spiritual home cares for all.

LOVE OF STRANGERS = HOSPITALITY

Home is a place of hospitality.

Let brotherly love continue. Do not forget to entertain strangers, for
by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels. ~ Hebrews 13:1-2


... be serious and watchful in your prayers. And above all things
have fervent love for one another, ... ~ 1st Peter 4:7-9


Our homes can become centers of spirituality if:
1. LOVE OF TRUTH
2. LOVE OF GOD BY LOVING OTHERS
3. LOVE OF STRANGERS
4. LOVE OF LOST

Lack of respect for God's Way = Lawlessness

IS GOD PART OF YOUR FAMILY?
DOES HE COME TO YOUR HOME?


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11/6/2008 ~ Humanity: Curse or Blessing?


Many cling to the material missing that of the eternal.
What are the priorities of your life?
More people live singly today.
~ There are more unmarried households now than married couples.
Are you a seeker on the road to truth?

Two single men gave advice:

JESUS / PAUL

● Marriage is of God and good for men and women.

... God blessed them, and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply; ...
~ Genesis 1:26-28


"It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper
comparable to him." ~ Genesis 2:18


Two are better than one, Because they have a good reward for their labor.
For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. ... ~ Ecclesiastes 4:9-10


... because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife,
and let each woman have her own husband. ~ 1st Corinthians 7:2


Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled;
but fornicators and adulterers God will judge. ~ Hebrews 13:4


... children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward.
... ~ Psalm 127:3-5


Jesus

"... For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage,
but are like angels of God in heaven." ~ Matthew 22:28-30


You only get to be married in this life to prepare you for the next life.

Paul

... to the unmarried and to the widows: It is good for them
if they remain even as I am; ... ~ 1st Corinthians 7:8


● Being single is of God and good for men and women.

... it is good for a man to remain as he is: ... ~ 1st Corinthians 7:25-26

... Nevertheless such will have trouble in the flesh, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 7:28

And this I say for your own profit, ... for what is proper, and that
you may serve the Lord without distraction. ~ 1st Corinthians 7:35


Marriage is the ďnormalĒ way but if single, being for God is good.

Higher Priority = Devotion to the Lord

... Spirit expressly says that in the latter times some will depart
from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits ... ~ 1st Timothy 4:1


It is not scriptural to forbid to marry and this was never taught.

... forbididding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which
God created to be recieved with thanksgiving ... ~ 1st Timothy 4:3


Extremes lay outside of God and are unbalanced.
Enjoy the fullness of life devoted to God above all.
Christ is the balancing force in our lives.

The Single Life:

PROBLEMS: NEEDS:
1. Feelings of Failure   Value and Acceptance  
2. Aloneness & Loneliness     Companionship
3. Celibacy   Intimacy

Marriage is not meant to fulfill our self-esteem.
└─> To cure loneliness.                                         
~ Some married people are the loneliest without companionship.
~
Can one be happy alone?
You can be alone and not be lonely.
~ Can you open to be vulnerable?
Most people yearn for intimacy.
We are spiritually minded creatures.
It is deeper than just sexuality, a deepest of joining.
Fearlessly standing united upon principles of God.
● To care for another.


... Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, ... ~ Matthew 11:28-30

The Promise = Rest for the Weary & Burdened
   The Means = The Yoke

1. Authority Submission
It is Christ we need to put on to receive the blessing.
2. Work Service

The Reason:                                                    
1. His Nature Gentle & Humble
                                             └─> Under His control.
2. His Yoke Easy, pleasant, it fits
If we donít find Christ easy, then we are unbalanced
~ and lack faith or have trouble believing.

3. His Load Light

Balance = All parts working together

... And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit,
which is the word of God; ... ~ Ephesians 6:17


Put on the Full Armor:
● Truth
● Righteousness
● Gospel of Peace   
● Faith
● Salvation
● Word of God

Remember, the Yoke of Christ Means:
Authority and Work = Submission and Service

When Balanced = Yoke is Easy & Burden is Light

... If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, ... yes,
and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. ... ~ Luke 14:25-27


Jesus

Devotion to Christ is over all others including yourself.
In this you will find value and acceptance.


A Balanced Individual Life:
PROBLEMS: NEEDS: PRIORITIES: BLESSINGS:
1. Feelings
    of Failure
Value and
Acceptance
Devotion
to the Lord
Identity:
Child of God
2. Aloneness and
    Loneliness
Companionship Service to Others Family of God
3. Celibacy Intimacy Spiritual Intimacy
with God
Freedom in Christ
to be Yourself

"... All cannot accept this saying, but only those to whom it has been given: ..."
~ Matthew 19:9-12


Jesus

Christ is the priority in our life.

Paul

... for what is proper, and that you may serve the Lord without distraction.
~ 1st Corinthians 7:35


Jesus

"... I am among you as the One who serves." ~ Luke 22:24-27

Paul

... take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, ...
~ 1st Corinthians 9:5


... I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all,
that I might win the more; ... ~ 1st Corinthians 9:19


... I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.
Now this I do for the gospel's sake, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 9:22-23


Give your life to other people.

Jesus

"And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God,
and Jesus Christ whom You have sent." ~ John 17:3


Paul

But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him. ...
~ 1st Corinthians 6:17-20


~ Spiritual intimacy.

... you are the temple of the living God. ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 6:16-18

                           Peter (A married man)

... His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and
godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us ... ~ 2nd Peter 1:2-4


No higher place can any of this earth enjoy
than the status of being called a child of God.


... "See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?"
~ Matthew 19:27


Jesus

"... for My name's sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life."
~ Matthew 19:29


With God, the mask of despair comes off.
Freedom to be who you are = intimacy with all.


Real Freedom = Slave of Christ

Spiritual Intimacy Is When We Are:
● Transparent   
● Vulnerable
● Humble
● Gentle
● Courageous
● Honest
● Merciful
● Confident
● Understanding
● Accepting
● Caring
● Hopeful
● Trusting
● Trustworthy

If two disagree concerning God, it is not for lack of unity in God,
it is for lack of understanding and submission in the heart of man.


The ďExtremeĒ but Balanced Life of Jesus
● Single = never married
● Celibate = never had sex = eunuch for the kingdom
● Childless
● Poor
● Homeless in the world that He created
● Popular but immensely hated
● Believed but misunderstood
● Followed by multitudes but in a crisis, alone
● Short life - 33 Ĺ years
● Died by torture
● The Son of God but treated as the scum of the earth
~ To Serve Us.

Get out of your self.
Give your life away in the service of Christ and your life will endless be.


Christian = Most Demanding = Most Rewarding

Life can only hold blessing if united in God.
Who have you given your life to?
LIVE FOR HIM.
~ It is the Most Human One Can Be.
DEVOTED.


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11/7/2008 ~ The Good News


~ Handbook for living.
Ignorance is the enemy of the Christian faith.
● It is a teaching religion.
It needs to be understood to make decisions on it, from it.
Do you thirst for the truth?


... being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is
in them, because of the blindness of their heart; ... ~ Ephesians 4:18


There are grave consequences for not knowing Jesus.
The truth needs to motivate our actions lest it hardens oneís heart.
People turn their back on the Gospel because of contradictory
things being taught outside Scripture by denominations.


SOMEBODY IS WRONG

So many ask, How do I become a true Christian?

... God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have
fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie ... ~ 1st John 1:5-6


For all that is Holy, God is where light is, there is no darkness.

The Problem:

● God is Light Ė Sinless
● We walk in the Darkness Ė Sinful

Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.
~ 1st John 3:4


"... of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day
that you eat of it you shall surely die." ~ Genesis 2:17


Humans fell from fellowship with God.

... passed from death to life, because we love the brethren.
He who does not love his brother abides in death. ~ 1st John 3:14


Death is separation from God and Love.

... your iniquities have separated you from your God; ... ~ Isaiah 59:1-2

Sin separates us because it is darkness.

... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, ... ~ Romans 3:23

... death spread to all men, because all sinned - ~ Romans 5:12

Sin is something you do more to yourself, not others.

SEPARATION FROM GOD = DARKNESS

How can a sinner be reconciled to a holy God?

Results of sin:
● Separation from God
● Separation from our fellow man (Cain & Abel)
● Separation from creation (ground was cursed)
● Separation from ourselves (lost-ness)

           Sound familiar? <─┐
Where do I belong, Why am I here?

Our rest  belongs in God.


... I go to prepare a place for you. ... ~ John 14:2-3

If you do not let God into your heart you will never be fulfilled.

... in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see,
to whom be honor and everlasting power. Amen. ~ 1st Timothy 6:16


God is greater than any of us could ever fathom.

You are of purer eyes than to behold evil, ... ~ Habakkuk 1:13

We have what appears to be an insurmountable standoff ~
● How a banished sinner can be reconciled to a Holy God.
● How can sin be removed to have fellowship with God?
Only Christ can give us the answer to free us of sin.


... Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, ... ~ 1st Timothy 1:15

The Answer does not lie within us.

Our Savior From Sin = His Sacrifice on the Cross

... but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block
and to the Greeks foolishness, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 1:23


Jesus was born to die that we might live.

"... for this purpose I came to this hour." ~ John 12:27

... the time had come for Him to be received up, ... ~ Luke 9:51

"For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed
for many for the remission of sins." ~ Matthew 26:28


... We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the LORD
has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. ~ Isaiah 53:6


                                          ┌─> A sin offering for us to be forgiving.
... who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become
the righteousness of God in Him. ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:21


... who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we,
having died to sins, might live for righteousness ... ~ 1st Peter 2:24


God gave us the way to live righteously.

... "It is finished!" And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. ~ John 19:30

... the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom;
and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, ... ~ Matthew 27:51


To be reunited with God.

"... whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because
it was not possible that He should be held by it." ~ Acts 2:24


A Way to be Forgiven = The Good News

  Apostlesí plea for truth to be known. <─┐
... though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ's behalf,
be reconciled to God. ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:18-21


  ● RECONCILIATION  
            ● GRACE

"... received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to
the gospel of the grace of God." ~ Acts 20:24


For by grace you have been saved through faith, and not of yourselves, it
is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. ~ Ephesians 2:8-9


So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
~ Romans 10:17


What must one do?
Man in himself can do nothing.
God will not force anyone to be saved.
His love is a gift of free will to us each.
He protects our free will unendingly.
Believe.


1. Acknowledge the problem     

... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, ... ~ Romans 3:23

2. Believe in the answer            

"Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name
under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." ~ Acts 4:12


Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through Me." ~ John 14:6


3. Open the door to the answer

... If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him
and dine with him, and he with Me." ~ Revelation 3:20


Jesus is at the door of each of our hearts.
~ Accept Him as your cure.
 How does one open the door? 
          ● Repent of your sins - Problem


Then Peter said to them, "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized
in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; ..." ~ Acts 2:38


Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out,
so that times of refreshing may come ... ~ Acts 3:19


                    ● Confess Christ as Lord - The Answer

... if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart
that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. ~ Romans 10:9


We need to confess Him everyday, always.

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the
name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, ~ Matthew 28:19

  ↕
WHAT JESUS SAID!
  ↕

"He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does
not believe will be condemned." ~ Mark 16:16


           ● Be Baptized Ė Problem/Answer

~ Because you believe He is.
Baptism is certainly controversial among religions today.
Does not the Bible clearly teach it?
      ● Into His death/resurrection


... us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?
Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism ... ~ Romans 6:3-5


~ Washes away sins.

'... be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.'
~ Acts 22:16


Itís calling on His name with a believing heart.

For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
~ Galatians 3:27


... much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit
offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse ... ~ Hebrews 9:13-14


To acknowledge God's truth is difficult for
those that would design their own salvation.
~
Infant baptisms are not God's instructions
and a human Implementation of disobedience.


... with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled
from an evil conscience and our bodies washed ... ~ Hebrews 10:21-22


Baptism:
● Into His death/resurrection - Problem/Answer
● Washes away sin - Problem
● Into Christ - Answer
● Cleanses by the Blood of Christ - Problem/Answer
● Appeal to God for a Good Conscience - Answer

There is also an antitype which now saves us - baptism (not the removal of
the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God),
through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, ... ~ 1st Peter 3:21


Are you washed in the blood of Christ?
Living to Him as Lord?
Christ is the Answer.
His commands.


Thanks be to my brother in Christ, John Kilgore.

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11/16/2008 ~ The Remedial System


REMEDIAL =   THE REMEDY: CORRECTIVE
  SKILLS CURING DEFICIENCIES

God gave us this at a terrible cost.

... you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us
an example, that you should follow His steps: ... ~ 1st Peter 2:21-24


What God has done for us through His Son.

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


In Prophecy

"... between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head,
And you shall bruise His heel." ~ Genesis 3:15


Jesus would knock unending truth on Satan's head.

"... in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed." ~ Genesis 12:3

Continued prophecy comes on down through the New Testament.

... a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall
call His name Immanuel (Literally God-With-Us). ~ Isaiah 7:14


~ In Fulfillment

"Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call
His name Immanuel," which is translated, "God with us." ~ Matthew 1:23


"In Type"

'... it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.' ~ Leviticus 17:11

... without shedding of blood there is no remission. ~ Hebrews 9:22

... behind the second veil, the part of the tabernacle which is called
the Holiest of All, ... ~ Hebrews 9:1-5


The Need

... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, ... ~ Romans 3:23

... Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in
Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. ~ Galatians 3:22


For there is not a just man on earth who does good And does not sin.
~ Ecclesiastes 7:20


The Cost

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotton Son, ..."
~ John 3:16


... "It is finished!" And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. ~ John 19:30

... when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries
and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, ... ~ Hebrews 5:7-10


What He went through that we might have the remission of sins.

Progress Forward

... "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on the earth. ... I am
with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. ~ Matthew 28:18-20


Jesus is reigning today at the right hand of God.

Execution

... "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of
Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; ..." ~ Acts 2:36-38

         └─> First time salvation for man was offered.

~ To believers: Repent and be baptized.
                         └─> Keys of the kingdom.

Faith, repentance, and immersion for the remission of sins.


"And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever
you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, ... ~ Matthew 16:19


... continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship,
in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. ~ Acts 2:42


1. Apostles' doctrine
2. Fellowship
3. Breaking of Bread
4. Prayers

... the first day of the week, when the disciples came together
to break bread, ... ~ Acts 20:7


Steadfast in the Apostles doctrine.

... not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, ... ~ Hebrews 10:25
 └─> Paul admonished disciples that were loosing their faith.

There is a provision for forgiveness
when we sin after believing and being baptized.


"Repent therefore of this your wickedness, and pray God if perhaps
the thought of your heart may be forgiven you." ~ Acts 8:22


                       ┌─> Change of mind.
REPENT         
                        └─> Change of Action.

"Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance, ..." ~ Matthew 3:8

We must continually repent of our wrongs and this takes time.

In Practice

... do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed
by the renewing of your mind, ... ~ Romans 12:1-2


Move toward the light.

But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship
with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ ... ~ 1st John 1:7-10


METAMORPHOSIS

  OLD MAN              NEW MAN  
     
BURIAL ↘\/↗ RESURECTION

~ To walk in the newness of life.

The Result

... "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father
except through Me. ~ John 14:1-6


... we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal ...
~ 2nd Corinthians 5:1-4


It is a release to trust God.

"... in the age to come, eternal life." ~ Mark 10:28-30

Does eternal life appeal to you?
Do you want the remission of sins?
Are you willing to be a living sacrifice?


... let him who hears say, "Come!" And let him who thirsts come. ...
~ Revelation 22:17


Do you really want Christ?
If so, you will cry for Him.


... we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, ...
~ Titus 2:11.14


~ ALWAYS ~

Thanks be to my good heartfelt friend in Christ, James Finney.

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11/23/2008 ~ Our Bodies as A Temple of God


The heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament shows His handiwork. ~ Psalm 19:1


For God to be glorified it must be through our bodies.

... your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you
have from God, and you are not your own? ... ~ 1st Corinthians 6:18-20


Do you own your own body or thank God for it as a gift?

... For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will dwell
in them And walk among them. ..." ~ 2nd Corinthians 6:11-18


We should walk with God in the world
~ or say in fellowship with other brethren.
Let God dwell in you.
GROWING.


... nor give place to the devil. ~ Ephesians 4:27

◎ God is in all, acknowledge that.  
● Does the devil reside in you?  
God can not dwell in darkness with the devil.
If Christ is in us, His temple, His life is there.
Is your body in service to God?
                                 └─> Many hold shame for missing the mark.


'... Consecrate yourselves therefore, and be holy,
for I am the LORD your God.' ~ Leviticus 20:6-7


Everything has been given to us to glorify God.
We must choose to have control over our impulses.
We need to recognize what is Not approved by God.


'... I the LORD am holy, and have separated you from the peoples,
that you should be Mine.' ~ Leviticus 20:26


... those who practice such things are deserving of death, ... ~ Romans 1:32

... Now the body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord,
and the Lord for the body. ... ~ 1st Corinthians 6:12-17


~ Bodies will die.
At death, all is vanity.
Will you defy what God has called for?


For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones.
~ Ephesians 5:30


There will be impact.
- Do you have a marriage of self to Christ?
God made us valuable, not worthless.
He commands us to use it for Him.
~ Not using it, with resentments for Him,
invites the wickedness of unrestrained filth.
We must have acts of serving, in our relationship with Christ.
Pornography is one of Satanís greatest tools.
~ You can get enough off of your antenna to go to hell.


... exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. ... ~ Romans 1:26-32
└─> People will suffer physically as a result of partaking in the poisons of this life.

If we allow it, we cut ourselves from God
and invite the judgment of death.


Safe Sex?
Safe Fornication?
Safe Adultery?

Or do you not know that he who is joined to a harlot
is one body with her? ... ~ 1st Corinthians 6:16


God only gives us ONE BODY ~ Our bodies belong to God.
~ He will do with us as He wills.
The wrath of God will shear souls.
If you are joined to the harlot, it will effect who you are.


       It Effects   Body
Spirit
Soul
  Who You Are.

If you participate in what you despise, you are a hypocrite and hold guilt.

CLOSE TO CHRIST = SENSE OF IDENTITY

... And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
~ Genesis 2:23-25


Can we be naked with God?
~ Shame is a safeguard, from God.
- Do you advertise the flesh or the faith?


... if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy
- meditate on these things. ~ Philippians 4:8


What do you radiate?
We need to control our thinking.
Choose not to think of those things that defile you.


... who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, ...
~ 1st Corinthians 10:12-13


Look for Alternatives.
An Ounce of
Prevention
 =  A Lot More Than
A Pound of Cure

For men, donít go mentally window shopping.
           └─> Flee evil.
               
Spend more time in the word.


Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this:
to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, ... ~ James 1:27


Where there is no counsel, the people fall;
But in the multitude of counselors there is safety. ~ Proverbs 11:14


Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him.
And a threefold cord is not quickly broken. ~ Ecclesiastes 4:12


It is safer for young and old alike too not go to those dark places
involving unrestrained physical explorations with other individuals.

The only ordained system by God -
for sexual relations - is marriage between a man and woman.
Remorse and regret comes from the darkness.
We must keep ourselves safe.


... If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.
~ Romans 12:17-18


We can only stand if we are honest with all men.
Let us present our bodies in honor to God.


... offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
~ 1st Peter 2:5


... pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is
the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. ... ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:17-21


WILL POWER = SPIRITUAL POWER

... Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands.
~ Acts 17:24


HE WANTS TO FIND US.
SUCCEED, FOR YOUR OWN SOULS SAKE.


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11/23/2008 ~ The Right To Choose


God chose to enter this world His way.

... of whom are the fathers and from whom, according to the flesh,
Christ came, who is over all, the eternally blessed God. ... ~ Romans 9:1-5


God has the right to do whatever He wills.

Jew or Gentile Not Choosing Godís Way = Lost

God does not ask for manís approval.
We are the oneís to make the choice if we will be saved.


... (... that the purpose of God according to election might stand,
not of works but of Him who calls), ... ~ Romans 9:6-13


Old Testament Inheritance:
1st Born Son Double Portion
2nd Born Son One Third

Though Isaac was not the first born of Abraham,
~ he is called the only begotten.


... he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, of
whom it was said, "In Isaac your seed shall be called," ... ~ Hebrews 11:17-18


God also had favor with Jacob, the 2nd born of Isaac.

... Says the LORD. "Yet Jacob I have loved; But Esau I have hated, ...
~ Malachi 1:2-3


More accurately, ďhateĒ would equate to ďloved less.Ē

"And you will be hated by all for My name's sake.
But he who endures to the end will be saved." ~ Matthew 10:22


EARTH ≠ FAIR

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is
neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. ~ Galatians 3:28


God has the right to show mercy or not.

... "I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will have
compassion on whomever I will have compassion." ~ Romans 9:14-15


So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs,
but of God who shows mercy. ... ~ Romans 9:16-17


... as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness
to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. ~ Romans 5:21


... Behold, these are the ungodly, Who are always at ease;
They increase in riches. ~ Psalm 73:3-12


Many ask why the wicked person prospers?

... So, Lord, when You awake, You shall despise their image.
~ Psalm 73:16-20


The quagmire of man holds sorrows and pleasures.

Therefore He has mercy on whom He wills, and whom He wills He hardens.
... ~ Romans 9:18-24


God has shown Grace in our darkness.

... "Unless the LORD of Sabaoth had left us a seed,
We would have become like Sodom, ..." ~ Romans 9:25-29


RIGHTEOUSNESS ≠ RIGHT TO SALVATION

Now "If the righteous one is scarcely saved,
Where will the ungodly and sinner appear?" ~ 1st Peter 4:18


● We are saved only if we are in Christ.
Do you rest in the premises and not the promises?


... Israel, pursuing the law of righteousness, has not attained
to the law of righteousness. ~ Romans 9:30-31


~ Some Jews will be lost.
~ Some Gentiles will be saved.


Why? Because they did not seek it by faith, but as it were,
by the works of the law. ... ~ Romans 9:32-33


~ Christ is the rock ~
If you donít build on His rock, it will become a boulder in the way.


... your children, who you say will be victims, who today have no knowledge
of good and evil, they shall go in there; ... ~ Deuteronomy 1:39


God has worked very hard so that we may know truth.

... by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you
again the first principles of the oracles of God; ... ~ Hebrews 5:11-14


Can we believe His simple truths?

But God has chosen the foolish things of the world
to put to shame the wise, ... ~ 1st Corinthians 1:27


Will we now knowledgably serve in His kingdom?

"... But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord." ~ Joshua 24:14-15

YOU CANíT SHORT CUT GOD.

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12/7/2008 ~ In Christ We Serve


... has blessed us with every spiritual blessing
in the heavenly places in Christ, ... ~ Ephesians 1:3


The Ephesians wanted to trust in their five senses.
Diana was the deity they worshipped. <─┘  
Great blessings and promises come from God.
                                    └─> Not of this world.
Our inheritance goes far beyond the material.

... He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, ...
~ Ephesians 1:4-5


 ◎ CHOSEN in Him
~ Opportunity to be PREDESTINED

... Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; ... ~ Romans 8:28-30

... not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace
which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began, ... ~ 2nd Timothy 1:9


He chose us through Jesus.
~ It is not chosen by or through any other than Christ.


THOSE IN CHRIST = CHOSEN

... That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that
which is born of the Spirit is spirit. ... ~ John 3:3-7


 Born of flesh Salvation
Born of Spirit = Salvation


  ┌─> Sons and daughters of God by faith.
For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. ...
~ Galatians 3:26-27


He accepts us through Him, His commands.

... to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us
accepted in the Beloved. ... ~ Ephesians 1:6


                                    We need to seek to please God. <─┐
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and not of yourselves,
it is the gift of God, ... ~ Ephesians 2:8-9


Our attitudes and conduct, if evil, will disqualify one from Godís grace.

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins,
according to the riches of His grace ... ~ Ephesians 1:7


One can not command forgiveness, it something begged for.

... he will not spare in the day of vengeance. He will accept no recompense,
Nor will he be appeased though you give many gifts. ~ Proverbs 6:27-35


Is all your money enough to buy yourself in to heaven?
Are all your deeds enough to buy yourself in to heaven?


CHRIST = Riches of God Come to Earth

Many claim Christians are losers using Christ as a psychological crutch.
~ It is not about insecurity, it is about daily TRUST.


CONFIDENCE = TRUST

He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, having
made known to us the mystery of His will, ... ~ Ephesians 1:8-10


Only through Christ will be the fullness of understanding.
God gave us Christ, ~ according to His eternal plan.
Prophesies were made and fulfilled ~ to make Godís will known to all.
◐◑
... and some yet to come ...


... both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.
~ 2nd Peter 3:10


It will come to pass as surly as the sun rises to set.

"... take heart, men, for I believe God that it will be just as it was told me."
~ Acts 27:25


In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according
to the purpose of Him who works all things ... ~ Ephesians 1:11-12


PREDESTINED Once Saved Always Saved

Instead of seeing the simple whole given truth Ö
Some choose to believe God will have mercy saving all Ö
Ö yes, forgiving all being tolerant of any and all circumstances Ö
Ö allowing any custom/belief or traditional social whim justifying sin Ö
Ö and this is where there will be gnashing of teeth when His truth is
fulfilled on that day when all the folly of man will be plain to see.
It is about belief in Him and not radical words of man.
~ Focus is to look to Christ and His word.
DO YOU STRIVE TO OBEY, SERVE CHRIST?


"... inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren,
you did it to Me." ~ Matthew 25:40


... having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,
who is the guarantee of our inheritance ... ~ Ephesians 1:13-14


... do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh,
but through love serve one another. ~ Galatians 5:13


... casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself
against the knowledge of God, ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 10:5


... with goodwill doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men, ...
~ Ephesians 6:6-7


We serve a Christ that exceeds what ever the world
may offer and supersedes all that could be known.


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12/21/2008 ~ Planted in God?


... in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree Planted
by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit ... ~ Psalm 1:1-6

O
Do you pOssess value or wOrthiness?
~ We live in a Godless world of spiritual deserts.
Congress will not help us achieve justice and morality.
Are country does not bear fruit to the glory of God.
Do you wish to be a TREE ROOTED in and for GOD?

... "Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. ..."
~ Matthew 5:2-11


A person blessed is one who thanks God for the hope of eternal life
~ no matter their circumstance.

"You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor." ~ Exodus 20:16
             └─> Today liars are the norm.

... "You shall not murder," "You shall not steal," "You shall not
bear false witness," "You shall not covet," ... ~ Romans 13:9

                            └─> The man who walks in these is blessed.

GODíS WORD IS BLESSED

He gave us what we need to know.
/ | \                         
Do you DELIGHT in the Lordís righteousness?
What is the Lordís position on:

                                    ● Divorce?
● Marriage?
● Homosexuality?
... unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. ...
~ 1st Corinthians 6:9-10


Do we choose the Lordís way or manís way?
Do you agree with the purity of God?
~ Obeying Him blesses future generations.

... Go up, you baldhead!" So he turned around and looked at them, and
pronounced a curse on them in the name of the LORD. ... ~ 2nd Kings 2:23-25


Consensus of the youth is to rebel against authority.
Does society mock the followers of Jehovah?

Will it be well when He searches you out?
Or can you mock Him as one mocks a man? ~ Job 13:9


... God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. ...
~ Galatians 6:7-8


Although the truth has been delivered to all ...
Todayís world makes it fashionable to steal, lie, and to commit adultery.
Our society has caved in to the immoral.
Where is our nobility?

Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly,
Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in ... ~ Psalm 1:1


1. Walk with Sinners
2. Not Stand Against Sinners
3. Sits with Sinners
↑ Renders you unfruitful ↑

And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness,
but rather expose them. ~ Ephesians 5:11


Television: Walking, one pauses to stand and then sits to watch.

Do not be deceived: "Evil company corrupts good habits."
~ 1st Corinthians 15:33


Do not stand or go where sinners gather.

... to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, ...
~ 2nd Peter 1:5-7


We need to work on perseverance
- for this is where we are fruitful for God.
~ Steadfast Examples.  

... brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; ...
~ Psalm 1:3


For the LORD knows the way of the righteous,
But the way of the ungodly shall perish. ~ Psalm 1:6


Planted in the Laws of God?
                                    ● Do we trust God?
● Can we trust ourselves?

OBEY = FRUITFUL

Think about God daily Ė plant seeds.
His blessing will be in you.
                                                  └─> Integrity.

... like a mustard seed, which a man took and put in his garden;
and it grew and became a large tree, ... ~ Luke 13:18-19


... "Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted."
~ Matthew 15:13


Follow God's word and you will be blessed.

... neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters,
but God who gives the increase. ~ 1st Corinthians 3:4-7




═╬═
══╬══


Stand up against the works of Satan.
Prosperity or poverty, God will allow you to endure.

Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your
heart. Commit your way to the LORD, Trust also in Him, ... ~ Psalm 37:4-6


Nobility is found in trusting Him.
GROW IN SUBMISSION TO HIS GOOD WORD
AND PEACE WILL ABOUND.


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12/21/2008 ~ The Lord is Coming


"... This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so
come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven." ~ Acts 1:9-11


Extremes:
● GOD IS COMING BACK
● GOD IS DEAD, GET OVER IT

┌─> A Day of the Lord.    
... know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night.
... ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:1-3


... He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.
~ Hebrews 9:27-28


Ready or not, here I come.

Then the dust will return to the earth as it was,
And the spirit will return to God who gave it. ~ Ecclesiastes 12:7


God has the plan for the continuation of life.
Do you have a plan to serve God in preparation for His coming?
- His Judgment will Seal the Fate of us All.


... the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice
of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. ... ~ 1st Thessalonians 4:13-18


The Bible is Clear:
1) JESUS IS COMING
2) JESUS IS COMING AGAIN
~ OLD TESTAMENT
~ NEW TESTAMENT

"But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven,
but My Father only. ..." ~ Matthew 24:36-39


"... of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven,
nor the Son, but only the Father. ..." ~ Mark 13:31-33


"Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming
at an hour you do not expect." ~ Matthew 24:44


~ No man knoweth.

... the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, ~ 2nd Peter 3:10-13

~ Be ready.
Are you awake in your faith?


┌─> Blessed are these that are ready.                                 
"... Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour
in which the Son of Man is coming." ~ Matthew 25:1-13


~ One must wait on the Lord.

... if you will not watch, I will come upon you as a thief, and you
will not know what hour I will come upon you. ~ Revelation 3:3


Who would desire the deepest of separations a heart could ever know?
This Greatest Day will come in the midst of our human commotions.
A resurrection is coming for ALL.
A Day is coming ...


"... also in the days of the Son of Man: They ate, they drank, they married
wives, they were given in marriage, until the day ..." ~ Luke 17:24-29


... all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth ...
~ John 5:28-29


No one will be able to avoid this.

My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. ~ Psalm 42:2
\  |  /        
A Living God made us.
/  |  \        
But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave,
For He shall receive me. Selah. ~ Psalm 49:15


From the dust God will spiritually raise them.

... of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, Some to
everlasting life, Some to shame and everlasting contempt. ~ Daniel 12:2


... And the dead in Christ will rise first. ~ 1st Thessalonians 4:15-16

1. Dead in Christ will be raised
2. Those left alive will be with Him always

"... those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who
have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation. ..." ~ John 5:21-30


... there will be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust. ...
~ Acts 24:15-16


And God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power.
~ 1st Corinthians 6:14


Do you want to share in the Glory of God?

But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this Day
should overtake you as a thief. ... ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:4-11


If you are a stranger to God,
~ you will be a stranger at the Day of Judgment.
● One needs to prepare by learning about God ○
The time will come when there will be no more time.


But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith
and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:8


Walk worthy of the calling.
The Lord rings at the door for you, do you hear?


... may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless
at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. ~ 1st Thessalonians 5:12-28


When Christ who is our life appears,
then you also will appear with Him in glory. ~ Colossians 3:4


... sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves
but in God who raises the dead, ... ~ 2nd Corinthians 1:9


We are confronted with calamity Ö too our despair.

"... can these bones live?" So I answered, "O Lord God, You know."
~ Ezekiel 37:3


~ We must die to live.

... There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.
~ 1st Corinthians 15:35-44


... if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away;
... ~ 2nd Corinthians 5:17


Indisputably, the Day of the Lord is coming.
His commands and instruction lay before us.
ARE YOU ADJUSTING YOUR DAYS TO MEET HIM?
~ IT IS A MATTER OF LIFE OR DEATH.
YOURS.


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12/28/2008 ~ When Christ was Crucified


Ü Ü Ü
On Golgotha (the skull) Christ was put to death with two criminals.
~ Roman guards along with the chief priests and some of the Sanhedrin,
His mother, along with the disciple He loved, and others were there.
-
The chief priests and most people reviled Jesus, as did the two criminals.
        - However, one of the thieves had a change of heart. <─┘
● Some people use the thief on the cross to disavow baptism.
Claim is made he got to heaven without being baptized. <─┘       
~ God does not welcome a rebellious heart but looks to the submissive.

1. We really donít know whether the thief was baptized or not.


... all the region around the Jordan went out to him and were baptized
by him in the Jordan, confessing their sins. ~ Matthew 3:5-6


... the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than
John (though Jesus Himself did not baptize, but His disciples)... ~ John 4:1-2


And when all the people heard Him, even the tax collectors justified God,
having been baptized with the baptism of John. ... ~ Luke 7:29-30


A lot of people were baptized in to Johnís baptism of repentance.
Where they would be ready for Christ. <─┘       

The Pharisees and the lawyers rejected Johnís message about
~ the One that would come after him and this call to repentance.

2. The thief is not an example of salvation by faith only.


           One must believe that God raised Jesus from the dead to be saved. <─┐
... if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart
that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. ~ Romans 10:9


The thief on the cross could not have believed this since
Jesus had not died yet, let alone still to be raised from the dead.
The thief could not have been saved by ďfaith onlyĒ
believing that Jesus had been raised from the dead.

3. Baptism is essential to receive forgiveness under the Gospel.

JESUS ~

"He who believes and is baptized will be saved;
but he who does not believe will be condemned." ~ Mark 16:16


PETER ~
... "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name
of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; ..." ~ Acts 2:38


SAUL TO PAUL ~
'... be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.'
~ Acts 22:16


... through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead
by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
~ Romans 6:3-4

                                                                                           ┌─> Newness of life.
... For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
~ Galatians 3:26-27


"... I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit,
he cannot enter the kingdom of God." ~ John 3:3-5


It is straightforward that one obeys Christ and is baptized in to His death.
This is the One Living God's plan for human salvation.


... which now saves us - baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh,
but the answer of a good conscience toward God), ... ~ 1st Peter 3:21


How can one argue baptism is not part of salvation?
- If you disagree with baptism you disagree with Jesus.  
God looks for committed souls.

~ There is also no such thing as infant baptism.
It is a conscious effort from the soul and not an oblivious act.


... those who gladly received his word were baptized; ... ~ Acts 2:41

... and when they had seen the brethren, they encouraged them ...
~ Acts 16:40


Infants can not be encouraged in the word.

And he went into all the region around the Jordan, preaching
a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, ... ~ Luke 3:3


Four types of baptism in the New Testament:
1. BAPTISM OF JOHN ~ call to repentance

... I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming
after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry.
He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. ... ~ Matthew 3:11-12


Four types of baptism in the New Testament:
1. BAPTISM OF JOHN ~ call to repentance
2. FIRE BAPTISM ~ for those that refuse Christ
3. HOLY SPIRIT BAPTISM ~ poured out upon people

The Holy Spirit coming had been foretold in the Old Testament.

Until the Spirit is poured upon us from on high, ... ~ Isaiah 32:15

... come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; ...
~ Joel 2:28


"And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem
the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom
they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him ..." ~ Zechariah 12:10


The Bible is clear when the Holy Spirit came upon us.

... having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit,
He poured out this which you now see and hear. ~ Acts 2:33


"I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes,
and you will keep My judgments and do them." ~ Ezekiel 36:27


The message is plain:
The Holy Spirit would be passed on to those that followed the disciples.


Pentecost to Judgment, One Has To:
1) HEAR PREACHING CONCERNING CHRIST
2) BELIEVE IT
3) CONFESS, WILLINGNESS TO REPENT
4) ENTER THE WATERS OF BAPTISM
       ~ AND RISE A NEW PERSON IN CHRIST
These are the integral steps called for from GOD
~ to become a Christian - they can not be circumvented.


... make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father
and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them ... ~ Matthew 28:18-20


Four types of baptism in the New Testament:
1. BAPTISM OF JOHN ~ call to repentance
2. FIRE BAPTISM ~ for those that refuse Christ
3. HOLY SPIRIT BAPTISM ~ poured out on people
4. THE GREAT COMMISION ~ preach, teach, baptize

The Catholic Church teaches
additional baptisms not found in the Bible:
S
I
D
E
S
T
E
P
S
a) Baptism of blood (martyred for Christ)
b) Baptism of desire (death bed confession)
c) Baptism of infants (oblivious to a good conscience)
F
A
K
E


I
T
Following manís way does not exempt one from Godís plan

● It is understood that Johnís baptism does not save anyone today.
The Apostles of long ago left Johnís baptism of repentance
~ correcting to the baptism of the Great Commission: To confess
Christ died and rose from the dead for our salvation,
~ and to be immersed in water.


Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him,
and he in God.~ 1st John 4:15


Which would be safer: To follow GOD or man?

4. Thief was saved while the Old Law was still in effect.

While Jesus Christ walked on the earth,
He lived and died as a Jew under the Old Law.

Baptism was not a requirement for salvation under the Old Covenant.
The Christian baptism and the church had not yet been instituted
~ when the thief died.

So, when was the church instituted?
○ When Holy Spirit descended upon them.  
                                         └─> 50 days after Christís crucifixion.
                                                      ... and Peter gave the first sermon.

                                      
This is when the requirement for
the Great Commission baptism went in to effect.


When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, ... ~ Acts 2:1-4

So, the thief on the cross was already dead in the ground
before the New Testament Covenant requirement or
commandment to be baptized went in to effect.

5. The testator (Christ), while alive, could save whom He would.

Until the will of Christ or New Covenant was probated,
~ men could not be held accountable for its' conditions.  


... where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be
the death of the testator. For a testament is in force after men are dead,
since it has no power at all while the testator lives. ~ Hebrews 9:15-17


A death has to occur for a testament to go in to effect.

"... know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins"
~ Matthew 9:6


Jesus had the power to forgive sins while on this earth.

When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic,
"Son, your sins are forgiven you." ~ Mark 2:5


... Then He said to her, "Your sins are forgiven." ... ~ Luke 7:36-50

The Old Law was taken to the cross with the death of Christ
~ then passing over to the New Covenant.


Faith in Christ and His Promises to Come →     ← Faith He Came