Sunday, January 26, 2014

Sin of Numbering

Look out for the numbers game. Churches and ministries all seem to play it. Evangelists boast of how many people answer their altar calls. TV preachers put up numbers of those calling in and how much money gets pledged. Churches post projected amounts needed for the budget vs. amounts received in the offerings. All these things are boastful and prideful and grieve the Holy Spirit of God.

"Now Satan stood up against Israel, and moved David to number Israel...And God was displeased with this thing; therefore He struck Israel." - 1 Chr 21:1,7

Even King David could be moved upon by Satan. Pride, we're told, is the number one sin that motivates all other sins. I think that is why we see a dearth of anointed preachers and teachers today. The better preacher they are, the more it goes to their heads.

An old friend of mine, the late Dave Hunt was one of the most humble men of God I've ever known. As a young believer I recall approaching him after one of his moving messages and telling him how great it was. He reacted like I had just slapped his face, and hurried to tell me it's the LORD - give honor to Him alone.

Dave knew the danger of getting puffed up.

As a new believer, so hungry for God's Word, I could not suppress my excitement after hearing a Spirit-inspired message and would thank the speaker afterwards. Most would just say, Thank You. Dave recognized the danger.

When do we cross the line over into idolatry? I believe that happens when we exalt the messenger and not the One they point to.

The whole world will be falling into that snare soon when the antichrist appears and the whole world wonders after the beast.

We need to guard our hearts and minds.

"Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry." - 1 Cor 10:12-14

"Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen." - 1 John 5:21

[We can appreciate this child's talent even as we see the attitude of idolatry in the cheers of the audience. They don't call it "American IDOL for nothing!]


Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Good Old Days

I've been awfully nostalgic lately - maybe that's a sign of my age.

Television is so filled with garbage that I find myself drawn to watching old movies and TV shows. One thing I've noticed is that the Bible is quoted quite often in dialogue, as if it was expected that the verses would be familiar to the audience. On two different episodes I watched this week of the Perry Mason show from the early 60s, he or another character quoted this verse from Proverbs:

"The way of a fool is right in his own eyes" - Prov. 12:15

They didn't cite the verse or where the quote came from - it was just assumed all would know. I've seen this same thing on episodes of The Twilight Zone and The Alfred Hitchcock show - it was just a natural way for people to talk back then before Sergeant Pepper.

The Bible talks about a time when there would be a famine for the hearing of the Word. This is certainly fulfilled in our time. Even churches are getting away from teaching the Bible and are becoming more like weekly pep talks.

I know this is not news to any of you that America has lost her biblical moorings and our society is post-Christian. In these dark days of apostasy it's more important than ever to abide in the Vine and to be in Christ. We can still feed ourselves on daily Manna as we read God's Word with the understanding given to us by the Holy Spirit. To those without the Spirit of God, the Bible is just wise words on paper - but to us the words breathe life to our souls.

Remember to pray for America and for the peace of Jerusalem.

"Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." 1 Cor 2:12-14

"Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." Dt. 6:4-7

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Iniquity on the Rise

"Still our ancient foe does seek to work us woe"

The mystery of iniquity is now widespread. The world has become a more violent and cruel place. The news is full of ugly footage of man's inhumanity to man. Antisemitism and anti-Christian bigotry and hatred is almost palpable around the globe.

But even on the local level, people just seem to be getting nastier and meaner. To quote the verse "the love of many shall grow cold" does not even quite personify the spread of evil we're seeing today in the course of our lives. The roaring lion is on the loose and he's seeking whom he may devour.

One can hardly leave the house without noticing this. I was at the grocery store the other day, putting my groceries on the checkout spindle, when I heard a vile voice growling at the clerk.

"Why are you putting my bread in the same bag with other stuff?," she snarled. The clerk looked up startled. The bag was only half-full with the bread on top. The mad woman went off in a rage. "I'll bag it myself! You don't know what you're doing. You people are always bagging my things wrong. I'm going to report you. I'm sick of this store!"

"I didn't know you wanted your bread in a bag by itself," the clerk politely responded. "I would have gladly done so if you only would have asked."

The crazy lady's voice could be heard throughout the store as she ranted on and on while bagging her purchases. When she was done she rolled her cart over to the customer service counter to complain. Although I had a lot of groceries, she was still over there ranting at the managers and pointing at the clerk when I paid for my groceries.

I told the clerk that I could see she did nothing wrong. She said, "Oh, that's nothing new. You should stand here and watch what I go through every day. You'd be shocked."

On the way out, I lingered near the front desk waiting for the mad banshee to leave. When she did, the manager immediately headed for the clerk, I suppose to confront her. I stopped the manager and told her that the customer was obviously having "aisle rage" and the clerk did nothing wrong. I gave her a blow by blow description of what I witnessed. Then her boss came over and she told me to tell him what I told her. I did so, and that calmed things down and they all returned to their stations.

The Bible says that the LORD loves justice. We as His ambassadors will run into such incidents like this -- even more so in the future as evil increases. May God give us the boldness and courage to speak up for the victims and not turn away like others, whether it is a small injustice or a big one.

"Open your mouth for the speechless,
In the cause of all who are appointed to die.
Open your mouth, judge righteously,
And plead the cause of the poor and needy."
- Proverbs 31:8-9

Sunday, January 5, 2014

God Answers Prayer

God answers prayer. Jesus sees our suffering. He cares!

He hears us when we humble ourselves before Him. He hears us when we pray fervently. He hears us when we cast our cares upon Him. He hears us when we 
put others' needs above our own. He hears us when we give Him honor and glory for all He has already done for us. He hears us when we thank Him for His promises. He hears us when we pray according to His will. He hears us when we look to Him for wisdom.

He makes even our enemies at peace with us. He promises to direct our steps and guide our paths. He communes with us through the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. He is our shield when we put all our trust in Him. He is our provider and protector. He is our all in all.

Seek His face today because of Who He is. Read His word for the renewing of your mind as you meditate upon His goodness and love and mercy. Lift up the needs of the saints. Bless His holy name.

Remember our brother Carman today, languishing with cancer and all our brothers and sisters in Christ who are hurting. Do so with fervency. Amen.

“So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened." Luke 11:9-10

"Bless the LORD, O my soul;
And all that is within me, bless His holy name!
"Bless the LORD, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits:
"Who forgives all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases,
"Who redeems your life from destruction,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies"
Ps 103:1-4

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Leaving RRR

Dear friends -

I have decided to stop my four-year long program on Rapture Ready Radio, the Scattered Sheep Report. It seems to have stagnated as far as downloads go for the past couple of years. The technical issues I've been having with blogtalk have been frustrating - especially when I have no control over it. I'll keep my Scattered Sheep blog going as well as my Youtube account and hope I can start publishing reports via video there instead of just audio. That way the programs will stay in my Youtube account and not, like my past RRR shows, get lost in the archives.

For now I"m focusing on getting organized - my research is a mess right now - and finish and publish my book on Amazon. I would appreciate all your prayers.

Concerning the times that we're in, my assignment from the LORD that I've been doing for over a decade to warn the body of Christ of the apostasy going on is complete. The church has had her warning and now lots of saints have taken up the task.

I see the time is right to get the message of salvation and the soon return of the LORD to the highways and hedges by pointing out to the unsaved world the signs all around them. This will be a daunting task due to the way people like Harold Camping have made prophecy a laughingstock, but with God all things are possible.

Although I took a break from facebook, I see the importance of keeping these lines of communication open with fellow scattered sheep. I do not see my fb page as a place for naysayers to come in and give us a hard time for believing what the Bible has to say, so those 'friends' will be weeded out when they reveal themselves.

So let's stay on the alert - watch and be sober. His coming is soon. Let's pray for one another.

Keep on the lookout!