Sunday, March 30, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 30 KEYS TO PROSPERITY

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 30 KEYS TO PROSPERITY:      HEARD someone recently say, "you mean a Christian that actually has money and is not poor and broke like the rest of us!". Ma...

Saturday, March 29, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 29 UNBELIEVABLE STORIES

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 29 UNBELIEVABLE STORIES:      WHEN we think of unbelievable stories of the bible, we think of Jonah in the belly of a whale for 3 days, we think of Joshua praying th...

Thursday, March 27, 2014

MARCH 27. "INGREDIENTS OF DEMISE"

"But that is the time to be careful! Beware that in your plenty you do not forget The Lord your God"
This is ridiculous! Who would forget someone who has done so much for them? I thought it was the opposite, I thought we had to worry about people in the Church that are not doing well, that are not prospering. Now you're  telling me that we also have to worry about those that God is prospering? I could see how someone could leave the Church who felt like God let them down or wasn't doing enough for them (as spiritually immature as that might be), but I don't think that, as our scripture says, we need "to be careful" that those that are prospering, by the hand of God.....would actually stray from God. And if that be true (which obviously it is if God has said it) then I can't help wonder....Does Christianity contain in itself it's on ingredients for its demise? In other words, if the tendency is for Christians to prosper in their ways, can the very virtues (honesty, faithfulness, character, morals) that Christianity brings to a man/woman eventually destroy them? We have all seen this, the character that comes into the church, can't keep a job, you couldn't trust him with his grandmother's prescription meds, all of a sudden he's keeping a job, has the most integrity at work, is faithful and begins to be noticed by the boss. Next thing you know he's being promoted, getting raises and prospering and as he prospers he becomes less and less interested in church and more interested in his new acquaintances and the new pleasures his income now affords him and he forgets (yes he forgets just like the scripture warned) who it was that picked him up and put him where he is. Hard to beleive, yes, but yet it happens all the time. I almost wished that God would not prosper his people, but of course that's not the answer. The answer is simply what God has said, "be careful when you prosper and don't forget The Lord thy God who brought you out...." Some people are simply users. I don't believe that all people come into the Church with a planned purpose to use the Church and God, but regardless, whether it was planned or not, that is the end result. Some of the people I have given the most to have left the church once they got all they needed, never to hear from them again. This gives me a new respect for Christians who are truly prosperous and successful in the world, but yet you see them Sunday after Sunday, whole heartedly serving God as if they needed Him for every last thing and penny. I wonder how many CHRISTIANS can really be trusted with prosperity and success, without turning on and forgetting the one who prospered them. My guess is, probably not many and that's why we see so few. Question is, are you one of them that God could trust? And of course your answer is...Yes, Yes, Me, Me!! But only God truly knows the answer to that!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

MARCH 26 "WEAR THEM ON YOUR FOREHEAD"

I will rarely be the one to say that, "God made a mistake", but I have to say, God made a mistake here when He instructed them to "wear them on their foreheads".  What was He thinking? Did God not think that one day, as hard as it is to believe that they might actually make boxes and put them on their foreheads? Or maybe God knew how religious they would become some day and He wanted them to look like fools, walking around with a box on their foreheads.  Fact is, all religious people look like fools to those outside the church.  They see us with all our dogmas, all our rules and regulations but then they see us, when push comes to shove, act like heathens, hateful, prejudiced, unforgiving, cheap, mean, bitter, and the list goes on.  God promised the day when His laws and precepts would be written upon our hearts. A few thousand years later, Jesus came, died and rose from the dead, with that promise now available to all (his laws written upon our hearts) but many prefer just to walk around with the box on the forehead, rather than have God come inside their hearts and radically change and transform them. Remember, it was the Pharisees, with God's laws literally put on their foreheads, that killed Jesus. Religious people killed Jesus then and Religious people still kill Jesus today. When we try to preach Jesus to a sinner, Jesus has been killed in them because of some religious person, walking around with the box of laws on their foreheads but yet living like the devil. Then when we (those with his laws & precepts in our hearts) approach them, they want nothing to do with Jesus or us. It is hard, almost unbelievable that a group of people would have taken this verse literally and made little boxes to put on their foreheads, but they did! A child could easily see the application here that God was implying, ie: Have God's words and his laws imprinted upon your mind.  Even better, have them in your heart. The problem is, Religious people are blind to who they are or what they look like. You will notice in the New Testament, nobody was Jesus sterner with, than the Pharisees. He told the Pharisees, "you go to great lengths to win a convert over, only to make him twice the son of hell that you are". That's beyond stern, we would even consider that rude in our PC culture and climate we live in today. Jesus had a warning to his disciples and to us, "beware of the leaven of the Pharisees". Jesus told you and I to beware, in other words, we are not exempt of having this religious, self righteous spirit jump on us. Each and every one of us has the potential to become quite religious, especially as the years go by and our original conversion experience is many years behind us. If only when we looked in the mirror, we could see the silly box that is upon our foreheads to see how foolish we look to the world, we would rip it off and pray that God put his word in our Hearts!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

MARCH 25 "CAN YOU ACCEPT CORRECTION?"

How do you respond to correction.  Is it true that Adults, are just kids in grown up bodies?  Moses says, " But the Lord was very angry with me, because of you. he vowed that I would never cross the Jordan River into the good land the Lord your God is giving you as your special possession".
If only the leaders we corrected were still willing to carry out their duties and responsibilities with dignity and honor, as Moses did in our text.  Our reaction to such a stern correction would be, "fine, I've given the past 40 years to getting these people into the Promised Land and now you're telling me I'm not going in because I lost my temper or disobeyed you one time? Well then you lead them, you tell them what they need to do or, better yet, have Joshua do it, since you see perfectly fit to have him go into the Promised Land! After all, where was Joshua when I was confronting Pharaoh, where was Joshua when I was leading these people through the desert, let Joshua give them instructions, I don't care, you can take me right now Lord, for all I care".  We have to understand that the reason we are receiving correction is because we did something wrong, not because we did something right. God told the first murder, Cain, "Sin is crouching at your door to have you, but if you will do right....."  Just do right and you won't have to deal with correction, but if you choose to do wrong, to flesh out or whatever it is you want to do, then be ready and willing to accept correction and take it like it like Moses.  I had a relationship with one Pastor that was often filled with correction and rebuke because he had me as a disciple during my stubborn and rebellious years.  I had another Pastor years later, that I was under, that I can't remember one time being corrected or rebuked by him.  The difference, was not them but me. I learned to just do right, it is so much easier just to do right and listen. I was a blessing to one Pastor, while I was a thorn in the side to my previous Pastor.  What we have to realize, is correction is "warranted". People say, "you are what you eat", in other words, you have warranted or earned, the weight and health problems you have ( I understand there's exceptions).  If you are in a place of constant correction, you have to believe it is not that you are being singled out, but rather that you are singling yourself out. Moses was told specifically what to do and was told specifically what not to do and he did the very opposite. I do notice that Moses still kind of blames the people for his finally giving in to his temper and allowing it to cause him to disobey God, but that's another issue. At least Moses accepts his correction, a harsh one indeed and still carries out his duties with dignity, honor and without attitude.  The question is, "can you be corrected" and do the same? If you can than you have the qualities of a mature and spiritual man/woman of God. If you cannot be corrected it only proves that much more "that you needed to be corrected" and it also shows the signs of a spiritually immature Christian. Which are you?

Monday, March 24, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 24 WANDERING FOR 40 YEARS

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 24 WANDERING FOR 40 YEARS:      Maybe I'm just in a somber mood this morning, but I was just overwhelmed with how depressing this scenario is and maybe that 's...

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 23 SOUNDS LIKE A GOOD IDEA, I GUESS...

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 23 SOUNDS LIKE A GOOD IDEA, I GUESS...:      VERSE 22, "Then ALL OF YOU (that was a red flag right there) came to me and said, "let us send men ahead to spy out the land ...

Friday, March 21, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 21 THE EAST SIDE OF THE JORDAN

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 21 THE EAST SIDE OF THE JORDAN:      Imagine this conversation, "I have a better place, than what God has in mind, I would prefer this, no really, go ahead, this is go...

Thursday, March 20, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 20 I DON'T LIKE THE WORD CURSED!

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 20 I DON'T LIKE THE WORD CURSED!:      WELL, poor Balaam is killed...and once again this confirms the idea in our previous reading, that God will use the wicked, but eventual...

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 18 WHO ARE YOU BANDING WITH?

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 18 WHO ARE YOU BANDING WITH?:      WE want to bury the past, but the past cannot be burried, the past becomes part of our history. What will your history be? Well who are...

Monday, March 17, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 16 HOW SPIRITUAL ARE YOU?

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 16 HOW SPIRITUAL ARE YOU?:      HOW spiritual are you?  Of course nobody likes "super spiritual" people, but that does not mean we should not be spiritual. ...

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 12 CONFLICT IN THE CAMP

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 12 CONFLICT IN THE CAMP:      God in the Old Testament reminds me of a parent with young children.  The constantly argue and squabble and mom and/or dad spends most ...

Monday, March 10, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 10 A DIFFERENT SPIRIT!

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 10 A DIFFERENT SPIRIT!:      WHY am I here is probably a common question we ask ourselves and God. Why am I here with these people, why am I here with this family, ...

Friday, March 7, 2014

MARCH 7. "NO HEAVAN, WHAT'S THIS?"

HEAVAN pass away, did I read right? And perhaps if it had come from another source, then it might be debatable as to whether that statement or prediction was to be worth listening to, but I'm pretty sure (correct me if I'm wrong) that Jesus is a valid source when it comes to the subject of Heavan. How can Heavan pass away? Where am I supposed to go when I die? Where will we say people have gone to, when we do funerals? Perhaps some don't really care; maybe the thought of them playing a harp on some celestial cloud, never quite appealed to them anyway (where people get this notion I don't know). Where will the people in Heavan go to when Heavan passes away? If there's not going to be a Heavan what is my hope, after I die? Okay, perhaps I have dragged this on a little to far, especially for those that already know where I'm going with this, but I am just trying to make a point...okay, maybe two points. The first point is how we can read over very serious statements in the bible and be completely oblivious to what we just read. I just asked an individual to read that verse before I wrote this blog. I asked him, "did you read anything odd or peculiar? He said, "no".  I asked him, "you don't' think Jesus saying, "there's not going to be a Heavan is peculiar and if that is the case, where will we go?"  He answered, "yes, that is odd and I don't know where we will go then....". My 2nd point is, for a species of creation that seems to talk so much about HEAVAN, we really are clueless about Heavan.  Every funeral speaks about Heavan, speaks about a better place, but better than what and what "constitutes better?" I wonder if there are some billionaires that might be really curious for us to present to them our definition of "better".  Is sitting on a cloud playing a Harp better? Is going without my fine Cognac and Cuban cigars your definition of better? Is your definition of better, going to beat my mansion on a private island in Fiji? It's sad that most people don't have a clue of what Heavan is; except it's the default option if you don't want Hell, but some, given the choice, would choose earth, as their eternal abode. People are very misguided on eternity, which is sad, considering how much of our lives will be spent there. Make fun of Heavan if you want, draw funny cartoons of some Angel on a cloud playing a Harp, asking "and how many more billion years....?" However, all we do is show are true ignorance when we do so. Because Heavan is not our eternal abode, Heavan will not last for eternity, it will pass away. All Heavan is, is a temporary housing until the end of the dispensation of The Church has come, the end of Grace and the time of the Gentiles, in plain English, it's over, the rapture has come, the tribulation has passed, the millennium has come and gone and Jesus comes and conquers once and for all. Then HEAVAN passes away and the New Earth and The New Jerusalem comes down, out of HEAVAN (before it's destroyed) and that is where we spend eternity, not on cloud. So for those that were choosing earth, you weren't so far off. So for those that thought their private island in Fiji, was quite Heavanly, you weren't so far off.  So what is the "true Christian's hope? That we will live for eternity, with Jesus, in all that is pure and all that is good, in a new and even better, revamped earth, with all of the universe thrown in. That sounds pretty good to me, that sounds a whole lot better than "well, I guess it's better than Hell", no it's a whole lot better than Hell and 1000x1000 times better than the current earth. There will be banquets and feasts, no more tears, sorrow or suffering. It will be with people you love, no enemies, no evil, no murder, no hate, it will be the best and most euphoric day/experience you ever had on earth, x 1000 and more. It will be the place you don't deserve, but in the midst of the City, will be Jesus, with his nail pierced hands and his nail pierced feet, to remind you, why you are there.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

MARCH 5. "WAS JESUS DEALING WITH JEHOVAH WITNESSES?

It's hard to believe that such a hopeless, inspiring cult/sect had any influence whatsoever in Jesus' day.  The Saducees were a sect of decent influence and still are today. They are better known today as Jehovah Witnesses. They still like to mess with Jesus and his disciples, making pretension to be of some common accord; when in all reality, they could not be further from what Jesus was and is. Imagine standing there, trying to go head to head, with Jesus, The Resurrection himself. Jesus quickly explains away their error in their thinking, as "ignorance of the scriptures". I do feel bad for people who are caught up in cults such as Mormonism and Jehovah Witnesses, but you will often find a common error; and that is they are ignorant of the scriptures.  The Saducees falsely and ignorantly believed that their is no other life; that the souls ceists to exist upon death. Imagine having the nerve to approach Jesus, who came specifically to die and be raised from the dead, and argue with him about The Resurrection.  The apostle Paul has had to deal with these heretics in his epistles, arguing for the validity and importance of the resurrection. It is amazing how bold people can be who are completely ignorant. However, we as Christians are also becoming ignorant of the scriptures. We have a new generation of young people coming into the church who refuse to read. At home they have grown up just playing video games and the schools are more and more giving in to letting students watch the movie, rather than read the book.  However, what happens is when this generation comes into the church, they sit and remain ignorant and solely rely upon the preaching for their information on what Christianity and living for God, is about. This is a new phenomenon to The Church and only time will tell as to how the results will play out. I think it is safe to assume, that it will not be good. What should seep rat us from the Saducees, Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses is that we are not ignorant of the scriptures and that we remain a people of His Word, no matter what generation we are part of and this is what will spare us of being baited into cults and weird movements of heresy's that sweep through the church and send so many Christians off into a spiritual tizzy, never to really get back on track with a sound mind and clarity on the simplicity of The Gospel. It's about the illuminati and all sorts of other diversions that CHRISTIANS get side tracked on and get totally side tracked from the simplicity of the Gospel. Are you ignorant of the scriptures? Are you trying to get through Christianity by watching movies and listening to audios? My college teachers used to warn the class, " you are not passing my course until, I know, that you know, this book, inside and out!"   And I believe that Jesus is speaking those same words to His Church today, know his book, don't be ignorant and deceived anymore!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

MARCH 4. "WHAT BELONGS TO GOD?"

Well,  JESUS may have answered the question for the Pharisees, but He left a question for us...."what belongs to God?"  "You mean part of my income belongs to God?"  And if part of my income belongs to God, how much of it belongs to God. I know I am required (and I don't like it either) to give to the Government but I have a hard time believing I also have to give to God. It is one thing throwing in a five or ten dollar bill in the plate as it comes by, but to feel I have to give? What if I want to go out to eat, what if there's something I want to buy, I shouldn't feel compelled to have to give, that's legalism! Jesus said to give "unto God what belongs to God", but the only reference to that is in the Old Testament, surely Jesus is not implying that we should still be Tithing? But what else "belongs to God, but The Tithe".  I was told Tithing was Old Testament and we weren't under The Law anymore and that I only had to give what I felt I could afford. I hate to admit it, but often I can't afford to give nothing because I've spent it all....and more! However if Jesus means what He says ( and I would assume He always does) than I'm in trouble, because I have been giving unto Caesar what belongs to Caesar (I don't need the I.R.S. knocking at my door) but I have not been giving to God what belongs to God. My Donations receipt last year was $150.00 for the whole year, but I gave when I had, most of the time.....How is it that others always seem to have to give but I dont't? I just assumed they had more, but maybe it's because they're blessed and I'm not? Have I been spending God's money on myself? If Jesus is endorsing The Tithe is He also endorsing the blessing that comes along with those who Tithe and the cursing that comes against those who don't?"
     I call true giving to God, "The Last Great Frontier" in a person's walk with Christ. I have seen people get their "morals" in order, before they obey and give. It seems that the last great frontier is that "yes",.... God does require us to give of our most prized and cherished commodity, ie: our precious income. You will find that people who want to claim this as legalism and that they will give as they feel moved by the spirit, interestingly, the spirit never moves them to give more than1 to 2 percent of their income and sometimes less. I have 100 percent of the time seen a direct correlation in the spiritual growth of a new CHRISTIAN in relation to how they embrace or reject, the timeless principle of The giving of Tithes in the offering. If you say you BELEIVE this God can raise you from the dead, than I would assume that you also believe that the same God can do a lessor miracle of making sure you don't go broke, starve and die, because you give him a measily ten cents on every dollar you make. Sometimes we have to step back and ask ourselves, "what is really the issue, do I have a problem with money, do I lack true faith in God, why won't I give?"  And we do play games with ourselves in our minds, but once you stop playing games and be honest with yourself you will know and admit, " you have money issues".  You have always had money issues, your family has always had money issues, there has always been a fear in your heart of not having enough. Unfortunately you will never break that until you begin to give. "For there is one who gives yet increases; and there is one who withholds more than he ought and it tends to lead to poverty".  A spirit of poverty and fear is not defeated by hoarding it's defeated and broken by giving, by giving unto God what belongs to him, a Tenth and offerings beside!

Monday, March 3, 2014

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 3 DIDN'T JESUS KNOW ABOUT THIS?

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 3 DIDN'T JESUS KNOW ABOUT THIS?:      SOMETHING that should catch your eye in today's reading is the complete contrast in Jesus' knowledge between the situation with...

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 2 DID I UPSET YOU?

THE ONE YEAR BIBLE CLUB: MARCH 2 DID I UPSET YOU?:      I LIKE MOSES....and you can say, "yeah, you like the mouthy ones..." but the good news here is God likes Moses too! So I kno...

Saturday, March 1, 2014

MARCH 1. THE BUMPER CROP TESTIMONY

Sadly enough, the Bumper Crop Testimony was not one the Israelites were able to boast of.  In all practicality it sounded great, sounded cool, but when the moment actually came to "believe" and "have faith", a man with a household to feed, debts to be paid and looking down the road, "if we don't plant now, it would be insane to think we will have provision next year when our harvest would normally be coming in..."  In the end, they failed, they did not give the land it's rest, and they were not able to give "the Bumper Crop Testimony" and on top of that; by not giving the land it's rest, as God had told them, they depleted the land of all its resources and nutrients and they had a crop failure and had to go without.  For all their intentions, as usual, they were worse off for not having trusted and believed God.  What was wrong with God's people back then?  Well, the same thing that's wrong with us today, we just can't seem "to believe" God when it comes down to the most serious issues of life; which is, finances and provision.  I will believe God for favorable weather on our 4th of July Pic-nic we have planned, anything that is remedial and should God not come through (as we think He is prone to do or not do, I should say) it would not be that big a deal.  However, we are all hypocrites because every parent reading this blog, knows how angry they would become with their children, when they were younger and they would not trust them, to "jump and I'll catch you".   Jump into this pool of water that could drown and kill you and trust dad to catch you.  And how offended the parent, especially, the Father is, when the child won't jump and runs away crying into mommy's arms. "Why would I not catch you, why would I let you drown, what is wrong with this kids thinking?"  Well, let me ask you, "why would God not catch you, why would God challenge you to jump and then watch you fall into a bad place?"  God is so wanting each of us to have a "Bumper Crop Testimony" but how few of them have we heard?  And when a sister or brother does stand up in the congregation to give her or his "bumper crop testimony" the rest of the congregation rolls their eyes and in their mind tries to explain away the miracle by some practical means, "yeah, yeah...what probably happened is .............".  Well, I disagree, what probably happened is exactly what the person of Faith testified about; that they believed God, and in so doing, allowed themselves to end up in a very vulnerable place; and God came through with a Bumper Crop. It seems we, The Church, God's people like to get excited about all that God is going to do, until the Year of Jubilee actually approaches and we are now faced, not with excitement and emotion, but faced with putting our faith into action.  I remember traveling a long ways with about ten brothers from our church, just to be able to jump off a high cliff into the river below. We could not stop talking about how fun and exciting it would be, the whole way to the cliff.  We parked, hiked a bit through the desert and when we finally got to the cliff, only 3 of the 10 guys actually jumped.  We, all 10 of us had equal excitement, however when all 10 saw the long drop to the water, fear, stopped 70% of the men from jumping. Excitement at that point was quenched by fear.  For all the Christians that can be pumped about and excited about the miracles that God is going to do in the Year of Jubilee, 70% will never jumper because of fear.  Which are you?  The 30% or the 70%?  If you say, you are the 30%, then jump and "not off a cliff" but off your place of comfort and security.