Sunday, September 27, 2015

Ready to Go!!

More and more it seems this world is not our home. Yet those we love here are worth the effort of not giving up on them, even if they fit in this world quite nicely.

The LORD's command to 'love not the world' is getting easier and easier to comply with. I can't wait to just fly away and meet the LORD in the air. But I want those I love coming along with me.

Jesus was not accepted in His home town, as He said a prophet gets no honor at home. He had to leave there to be about His Father's business. Abraham also was called out of Ur, his home town. When Jesus called His disciples, He sent them out.

We need to stop being so comfortable. If the LORD is telling you to leave the place of your birth -- don't delay. The Harvest is just about over, and gleaners are needed to go out and scoop up the leftovers. 

Jesus said, “He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me, scatters."

Pray that the LORD would send other voices of His to your loved ones -- after they have stopped listening to you. And you may be called upon to be the voice of Truth to the loved ones of other believers who are praying God would send them someone they will listen to.

The time is sooooo short -- We must follow our Master and be about His business.

Get busy!!

“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves. But beware of men, for they will hand you over to the courts and scourge you in their synagogues; and you will even be brought before governors and kings for My sake, as a testimony to them and to the Gentiles. But when they hand you over, do not worry about how or what you are to say; for it will be given you in that hour what you are to say. For it is not you who speak, but it is the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you. Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death. You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured to the end who will be saved." - Matt 10:16-22

“If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you." - John 15:19

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Look Out!!

The devil has dug a pit and laid a snare for us. Look out! Look out!!

If he can't get us by deception and clever lies, he'll trip us up by using our love and friendships with one another to attack our allegiance to the Almighty.

How many well-meaning Christians do you know who are straying from the LORD yet you can't bring yourself to correct them since it could affect the relationship? So you look the other way in the beginning, and then eventually go along with them in their error.

Look at all the teachers and speakers who walk lock-step with false teachers and false prophets, joining them in their conferences and on their TV shows - all in the name of love and unity. We're told not to curse them for doing so, but to just judge them by what they say, not by what they're going along with. This is a trap. What begins as accommodation ends in participation.

To those who allow friendships to stifle hearing from God, they will no longer hear from God. The time will come when God will stop revealing truth to those who look the other way when error enters the camp.

The other extreme are those who nit-pick at others when they do not agree with a friend's opinions. Friendships are lost and division in the Body occurs when men strain at gnats and swallow camels. This too is a snare of the enemy.

Love AND truth!! One cannot overshadow the other. Pray for one another that we all can keep the balance of those two divine attributes.

"Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace." James 3:13-18

"Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever" - 1 Pet. 1:22-23

"“Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven." - Matt 18:3

Sunday, September 6, 2015

New to the Kingdom

I got saved at a time when the Jonestown mass suicide was a big news item. Perhaps that is why I was hesitant to attend any church right away. I somehow knew in my spirit that danger lurked in places called 'churches.' I didn't have enough information to know if I was walking into the door of a cult or not, so I stayed home just reading my Bible as long as I could.

As a new believer I could not keep my mouth shut about Jesus. With little to go on but my new faith, I told everybody I knew about Him. Some responses scared me when I did not have the biblical grounding to give a reasoned answer. But no argument could tell me that I didn't experience a true and profound encounter with the living God that changed my life drastically and forever.

In spite of my lack of knowledge, other members of my family were moved to get a Bible and see for themselves. Two of my sisters soon got saved, but they were anxious to get connected to the Christian community with no hesitation. Unlike me, they didn't any reservations about all the competing steeples in and around Orange County, California.

So I sorta got dragged out of my comfort zone. My older sister discovered TBN, and in particular a regular guest at that time, Hal Lindsey. So I would go with her to be in the studio audience whenever he would be there. 

My younger sister joined a Christian theater group that was doing a play that was to be performed at Melodyland, so she brought us aboard. Some in that group attended Walter Martin's Bible study and we began to attend. He talked so much about cults and a recent full-page ad that appeared in the newspaper with the headline, "The Christ is Here Now," and I learned about the coming Antichrist. That only confirmed my intense belief that deception was lurking in religion and in christendom. We were driven out of that study by some unscrupulous people for a year or so before the LORD led us back to Dr. Martin's ministry.

The three of us drifted from place to place before getting back to Dr. Martin. The LORD assisted me with the gift of discerning of spirits, although it didn't seem like a gift at the time. We attended a small charismatic service one time that was quite rambunctious. As the little group started singing a song about stomping on the devil and the leader addressed Satan during the prayer, screaming at demons to go into the pit, I could sense an overwhelming presence of the demonic -- something very evil although I had no knowledge of demons at the time. And I just had to get out of there. The guy who had brought us there told me I must have a demon since I could not bear being in there and so he prayed over me and spoke in tongues and instructed me to imitate his gibberish. I complied as best I could and was told I needed to keep practicing and that would be my defense against demons in the future. Every time I would practice this so-called tongues thing in private I would once again sense something very evil present. I quit doing it.

We drifted all over the place -- from the Eagles Nest in Santa Ana, a charismatic church pastored by a guy named Gary Greenwald who later hooked up with false prophet Bill Hamon to the Crystal Cathedral where my older sister joined the choir -- to Dr. Gene Scott's Faith Center, a long commute to Glendale where I became a volunteer answering phones. I finally settled on Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa where I had gone once before I got saved for a Christmas service. All the church-hopping got pretty tiring.

All these decades later, I know that my initial desire for Truth and my unlearned understanding that organized religion calling itself the church was tainted with error was really a supernatural word of knowledge from the LORD. He was cautioning me to test everything from the very start. And He has directed my steps ever since to live a life on the alert against falsehood while depending upon Him to give me understanding into His Word. 

I know many of you have similar stories -- unique to each one of us -- in how the Author and Finisher of our Faith has kept you and preserved you. And He will empower us to be overcomers and protect us from and in the evil days ahead.

"Trust in the LORD, and do good;
Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.
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,
And He shall bring it to pass.
He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light,
And your justice as the noonday.
Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him;
--Ps. 37:3-7a

“I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name. Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie—indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth." - Rev 3:8-10