Saturday, July 30, 2016

The Dark Draw


Psalms 106:25  But they complained in their tents, And did not heed the voice of the LORD.

Reference: Deuteronomy 1:27  and you complained in your tents, and said, ’Because the LORD hates us, He has brought us out of the land of Egypt to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us.

The carnal spirit of man is a dark force that draws people away from God. From cults to crusades, demons often get involved only after the evil plans of man are hatched. Some people are bent towards evil while others only dabble in it for their own personal gain. Far too often our own complaints, as well as the complaints of others, move us towards the darkness and away from God. I don’t know why it is the way it is but the truth is darkness draws, facilitates and hides evil while light scatters the sin.

The pattern of drawing away from God and Godliness follows the same course:
·        Subtle conversations – even with oneself in their mind … creating and feeding dissatisfactions – Basic Complaint
·        Followed by Separation from the Word, Will & Way of God
·        Then comes the Isolation from all that is life giving
·        Finally the darkness exercises Control over the soul

Those souls drawn into the darkness find themselves in need of deliverance for their spirit, renewal for their minds, and restoration for the relationships which cannot flourish in the darkness.

It doesn’t have to be the devil that separates people from God and His work and will. Rather it is most often the lust driven needs and carnal appetites of men and women hungry to satisfy the cravings of their flesh. We see this played out even in the current political process of our national elections.
Jude 1:16  These are grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts; and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage.

Sides are taken … Each side looking to find common ground to foster even greater dissatisfaction hoping to separate, isolate and control. Why? … Because of a singular desire to make some gain for themselves.

The practice of tearing another person or platform down in order to elevate you is not the way of the Lord but rather the way of the flesh. It is a work of the flesh found in the book of Galatians called emulation. The devil does not need to get involved when men and women will do most of the work for him if he can just give them something to complain about.

One of the biggest reasons why the Children of Israel did not get to go into the Promise Land was because they had developed a very bad and debilitating habit – they complained about everything. It separated them, isolated them and ultimately controlled their destiny. They believed God felt about them like they felt about Him!

Life is not a competition.

Here is a good rule of thumb: Expect people to talk about you just exactly like you talk about them and say about you exactly what you say about them and feel about you exactly like you feel about them.

Nothing is hidden … not really … just some people have a more socially acceptable way of covering it.

While worry can stop you and rob you of joy, confidence and strength, complaining can stop a whole nation from attempting or achieving their greatest day. The Children of Israel freely complained to each other about everything … even about God! Not the best idea …  And, by the way:
Correction is not complaint.

Correction is aimed at fixing a problem while complaint aims only at voicing the problem or worse yet, causing a problem. Complaining spirits are sometimes subtle and sometimes loud and obnoxious. However they present themselves, they aim to separate, isolate, and control.

Complaint is when you are talking to the wrong person … or even when you may be talking to the right person with the wrong attitude.

Complaint saddles others with your aggravations.

Voicing your concerns, frustrations or complaints to someone who is neither the cause nor the cure of the complaint is divisive. If separation of friends, families, the nation, or the Church is what you are going for … complaining is the right choice. However, if fixing a problem that legitimately exists is your intent then complaints will only work against that goal. Fussing and complaining never fixes anything … it only makes things worse.

The Godly pattern and the command we have been given is to shine a light on the answer and not on the problem. Anyone can curse the darkness but it only helps when someone lights a lamp. You might say, “I know what the problem is but I don’t know the answer. What should I do?”
1.   Pray
2.   Talk to the right person with the right attitude. (Someone who can provide the answer or someone who is responsible to fix it.)
3.   Stop talking to the wrong people. (Don’t make things worse by involving others or adding fuel to the fire.)
4.   Be willing to consider that some of the problem might be you and be ready to accept personal responsibility to work on you first.
5.   Don’t be drawn into the dark by allowing others to saddle you with their carnal complaints …

Philippians 2  NKJV
14  Do all things without complaining and disputing,
15  that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,
16  holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.

1 Corinthians 10:10  Do not complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

The Injustice of It All


Psalms 118 NKJV
1  Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.
2  Let Israel now say, "His mercy endures forever."
3  Let the house of Aaron now say, "His mercy endures forever."
4  Let those who fear the LORD now say, "His mercy endures forever."
5  I called on the LORD in distress; The LORD answered me and set me in a broad place.
6  The LORD is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?
7  The LORD is for me among those who help me; Therefore I shall see my desire on those who hate me.
It is better to trust in the LORD Than to put confidence in man.
It is better to trust in the LORD Than to put confidence in princes.
10  All nations surrounded me, But in the name of the LORD I will destroy them.
11  They surrounded me, Yes, they surrounded me; But in the name of the LORD I will destroy them.
12  They surrounded me like bees; They were quenched like a fire of thorns; For in the name of the LORD I will destroy them.
13  You pushed me violently, that I might fall, But the LORD helped me.
14  The LORD is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation.

Have you ever been afraid? I don’t mean that startled feeling that comes when something unexpected suddenly happens - like having a blowout on a car or a dog comes from out of nowhere and barks at you and makes you jump. That’s a different kind of fear than the fear I’m referring to this morning.

The kind of fear I want to talk to you about today is that gripping haunting captivating fear that looms large and overshadows every other facet of life so that every thought, each conversation and activity is subject to being interrupted and somehow colored by that fear. This type of fear produces either depression or anger. Life can so quickly become a prison when everything you see, hear or experience has to be passed through a filter of fear, hurt and anger. People hate to be made to feel afraid.

Fear can make us hate our enemies, hate our co-workers and even hate members of our own family. Fear, or the threat of it, can make us want to retaliate and hurt those whom we imagine are perpetrating that threat. Whether real or imagined, threats can make irrational behavior seem very rational to the person who is afraid. For the most part, people just want to stop being made to feel afraid while for others, they feel a vengeful rage which cannot be satisfied until they have hurt those whom they feel are hurting them or the people they love.

Injustice looms louder and lasts longer than those times when there were no infractions. When we take it personal or make it personal … or worse yet, when it is personal, it can be very hard to get over.

We cannot justify what some people do in their personal reaction to the things they fear … but we can try to understand that fear. We can hope to understand without fearing that our attempts to understand will somehow validate or justify horrible acts that we cannot and should not tolerate.

·        Fear is terrible …
·        Justified fear is worse …
·        Because fear has torment …
·        It’s terrible to be continually tormented by fear … however …

The Psalmist wrote about both a natural time and a spiritual time. We who are Born Again Believers and Members of the Body of Christ throughout the earth are living today in the Spiritual Age of the Church. King David speaks of the eternal principle which teaches us that:

Our victory is not in our enemy’s defeat. Our victory is in the Name of the Lord!

Our greatest help and our only hope to right the wrongs and heal the hurts caused to us by Satan, who is the enemy of our souls, will be found in the Name of the Lord Jesus. Jesus interpreted this Psalm and told us how to defeat our enemies. He said it this way:

Matthew 5  NKJV
43  "You have heard that it was said, ’You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’
44  "But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.”

Proverbs 25  NKJV
21  If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;
22  For so you will heap coals of fire on his head, And the LORD will reward you.

Romans 12  NKJV
17  Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men.
18  If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.
19  Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord.
20  Therefore "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head."
21  Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

The only true victory will come by the Spirit of the Lord when the hearts and minds of men and women are set free from demonic deception that breeds prejudice, racism, fear, hatred, radical terrorism, hate mongering, and revenge. If this deliverance is ever to take place it must first begin at the House of God and with the Children of God. Just as King David said, victory over our enemies is in the Name of the Lord.

The Church cannot take sides in the world and follow the devil’s desire to pit man against man, family against family, race against race or religion against religion. The Church, which is the family of God in the earth, must represent God. The unified Church of the Living God must stand together and be above the common prejudices and biased acts and attitudes we see in the world. The prince of this world has tried to manipulate Believers and bring disunity even in the Church in attempts to separate Christians on issues related to the injustices inherent in a world governed by man.

The Church must be aware of these injustices and racial inequalities in America and around the world and speak to them and stand with those downtrodden and disenfranchised without becoming hardened or violent in our reactions. We must take our stand for what is right based on the Word of the Lord Jesus and for His purposes and not for the causes of men. Hate and vengeance are not a duty God has given to the Church.

Injustices and acts of terrorism are perpetrated by those who are mentally and spiritually unstable. All of the heinous acts we have seen on the nightly news these past few weeks are indicative of a world without the love, joy, and peace that comes from a relationship with Jesus Christ.

What can you do? What does God expect and what does this world need from the Church and from every Born Again Believer in Jesus - White; Black; Hispanic; Asian; Employer; Employee, Student; Teacher; Police and Prisoner alike … If you are a Believer in Jesus I command you, yet not I but the Lord:

1.   Recognize the Reality of Racism and Realize that it is a demonic force aimed at tearing down individuals and people groups and tearing up Relationships within families, communities, and nations.
2.   Repent of any involvement or support you have given to the devil’s desires by tolerating racist thoughts, attitudes, or acts in your life, family, or circle of friends without Raising a Reasonable challenge.
3.   Stop participating in conversations where disparaging remarks are made. 
4.   Pray for those on every side who are hurt, afraid, angry and filled with the poison of hatred spread by the devil and those who work iniquity. And especially pray for those who just want peace, justice, forgiveness, and hope – those who are working for a better tomorrow.
5.   Do your Part to be a Hand Reaching out, a Heart Opened up and a Voice Speaking Light in the darkness of this world.

Philippians 2:15  That you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world.

Life in Cycles


Life unfolds and revolves in cycles. Some of the most evident cycles are seen in nature with days and seasons. Whether concerning the lunar cycle or a life cycle, God has ordered and we all observe cycles in life. If you follow the stock market or the housing market or the crawfish market, markets follow predictable cycles. In some greater perspectives individuals, families, governments and the nations follow cycles. Girls often turn out to be more like their moms than they imagine and men find it hard not to repeat some of the same steps their dads took and we end up in life better understanding our parents’ decisions much better once we have grown children and begin watching them raise our grandchildren.

Just as the sun and the moon are predictable so also are the natural and the spiritual unfolding of Biblical prophecies. Since time began life on planet earth has continued to follow a prophesied cycle of people coming to God and being blessed and then using those blessings to fund and facilitate a departure from God only to bring themselves back into great need for God once again. We see this in the scriptures over and over. This cycle is not caused by God but well-known and spoken to throughout the scriptures.

A cycle is simply a predictable unfolding or repeats … We live in a very predictably repetitive world. Evidently mankind is very predictable and it is God’s hope that we would learn from our experiences, the experiences of others and the admonitions in His Word to help us avoid going through the downsides of life’s certain cycles. It is also God’s hope that when we find ourselves in a downturn that we would readily assess the situation, take inventory, find the right path and move ourselves out and back up into His blessed will.

When we find ourselves thinking, believing, acting or living in a way we never thought we would repeat, it’s time to go to God’s word and recognize His remedy for those who have before experienced the same thing we presently face. It is more common to judge others and know exactly what they should do in their situation than it is to judge ourselves when that same thing happens in our lives. And believe me when I tell you that God meant it when He said that … in judging others we only condemn ourselves. For, the Bible says, the very thing we are critical of in the lives of others we allow in our own lives without notice. For this reason God calls those who are judgmental hypocrites. But that’s not what we are focusing on tonight. Rather I have a spiritual point to this spiritual principle.

Life unfolds and revolves in cycles. While you turn to the book of Isaiah, chapter 50, let me read a verse written by the Holy Spirit and penned by the Apostle Paul which is intended to open a window into the greater revelation of the cycle of life. I believe this verse to a very broad brush intended to overlay the whole of life. I embrace the revelation of this principle as one of the “keys” to the Kingdom in understanding life and especially prophecy concerning things yet to come.

1 Corinthians 15:46  However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual.

First the natural then the spiritual … perhaps this is the greatest cycle in God’s prophetic plan for mankind. Let’s look at:

Isaiah 50

When the prophet speaks this word from God he is speaking to a current situation in the lives and nation of Israel. Isaiah is addressing the Children of God and their physical departures from God’s will and way which have caused a separation in relationship between them and God and prescribes throughout the book those things which will happen to them as a result. He further gives the Children of Israel hope that if they repent and return, God will forgive and restore. Well, let’s just read these prophecies which were given to Israel in their natural circumstances with physical promises and remedies and see how they now apply to the Church in the spiritual moments we now face in this cycle of first the natural and then the spiritual.

Isaiah 50
1 ¶  Thus says the LORD: "Where is the certificate of your mother’s divorce, Whom I have put away? Or which of My creditors is it to whom I have sold you? For your iniquities you have sold yourselves, And for your transgressions your mother has been put away.

Note: God speaks of Himself as the husband of His people. He has married Israel in the same way as Jesus has married Himself to the Church. Isaiah 62:5 “As a bridegroom rejoices over his bride so shall your God rejoice over you.” Isaiah 54:5: “For your Creator is your husband.”; Jeremiah 3:14: “Turn O backsliding children, says the Lord, for I am married unto you.”; Revelation 21:9 – the Church is referred to as the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.
Note 2: Here none can claim that God has simply grown tired of His wife and divorced her for no good reason. These have gone into Babylonian captivity of their own accord and of their own doing. It is not God’s will or fault as some imagine that we are going through hardship. He is well able to respond with enough strength to deliver.

2  Why, when I came, was there no man? Why, when I called, was there none to answer? Is My hand shortened at all that it cannot redeem? Or have I no power to deliver? Indeed with My rebuke I dry up the sea, I make the rivers a wilderness; Their fish stink because there is no water, And die of thirst.
3  I clothe the heavens with blackness, And I make sackcloth their covering."

Note: God came to help but no one responded. It is not the Lord who is unable to help. Then, there is a sudden change here as a hope. Messiah takes charge and begins to speak as the Redeemer and Deliverer of His bride and speaks prophetically to the course He would take to bring about the vengeance of the Lord on those who have taken advantage of the Children of God in their separated circumstances, even though they had brought it upon themselves.

4 ¶  "The Lord GOD has given Me The tongue of the learned, That I should know how to speak A word in season to him who is weary. He awakens Me morning by morning, He awakens My ear To hear as the learned.

Note: I can still hear the taps on the heels of my drill sergeant’s shoes at precisely 5:30am morning by morning as he approached the door to our barracks intending on waking us for morning drill. O the excitement that he would awaken in those ready for the day’s lesson. He had not to say a word for we were all awake and expectant yet he roared his command and we all sprang to attention ready for anything. This is the picture of an obedient Messiah so willing to hear the voice of the Father and do His will. Jesus continues …

5  The Lord GOD has opened My ear; And I was not rebellious, Nor did I turn away.
6  I gave My back to those who struck Me, And My cheeks to those who plucked out the beard; I did not hide My face from shame and spitting.
7  "For the Lord GOD will help Me; Therefore I will not be disgraced; Therefore I have set My face like a flint, And I know that I will not be ashamed.
He is near who justifies Me; Who will contend with Me? Let us stand together. Who is My adversary? Let him come near Me.
9  Surely the Lord GOD will help Me; Who is he who will condemn Me? Indeed they will all grow old like a garment; The moth will eat them up.
10 ¶  "Who among you fears the LORD? Who obeys the voice of His Servant? Who walks in darkness And has no light? Let him trust in the name of the LORD And rely upon his God.
11  Look, all you who kindle a fire, Who encircle yourselves with sparks: Walk in the light of your fire and in the sparks you have kindled — This you shall have from My hand: You shall lie down in torment.

Note: What folly to trust in your own fire …  conversely: God comforts us in our trials and assures us He can deliver! This was spoken to the Nation of Israel in the time of their captivity and addressed the current moment of their natural needs. In the cycle of first the natural and then the spiritual, this prophetic word is unfolding to the Church as a light of hope in the dark times we know as we face the last days and we hear the voice of the Messiah telling us to wake up and look up for we shall be comforted and redeemed.

Isaiah 51
1 ¶  "Listen to Me, you who follow after righteousness, You who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were hewn, And to the hole of the pit from which you were dug.
2  Look to Abraham your father, And to Sarah who bore you; For I called him alone, And blessed him and increased him."
3  For the LORD will comfort Zion, He will comfort all her waste places; He will make her wilderness like Eden, And her desert like the garden of the LORD; Joy and gladness will be found in it, Thanksgiving and the voice of melody.
4 ¶  "Listen to Me, My people; And give ear to Me, O My nation: For law will proceed from Me, And I will make My justice rest As a light of the peoples.
5  My righteousness is near, My salvation has gone forth, And My arms will judge the peoples; The coastlands will wait upon Me, And on My arm they will trust.
6  Lift up your eyes to the heavens, And look on the earth beneath. For the heavens will vanish away like smoke, The earth will grow old like a garment, And those who dwell in it will die in like manner; But My salvation will be forever, And My righteousness will not be abolished.
7  "Listen to Me, you who know righteousness, You people in whose heart is My law: Do not fear the reproach of men, Nor be afraid of their insults.
8  For the moth will eat them up like a garment, And the worm will eat them like wool; But My righteousness will be forever, And My salvation from generation to generation."
9 ¶  Awake, awake, put on strength, O arm of the LORD! Awake as in the ancient days, In the generations of old. Are You not the arm that cut Rahab apart, And wounded the serpent?
10  Are You not the One who dried up the sea, The waters of the great deep; That made the depths of the sea a road For the redeemed to cross over?
11  So the ransomed of the LORD shall return, And come to Zion with singing, With everlasting joy on their heads. They shall obtain joy and gladness; Sorrow and sighing shall flee away.
12  "I, even I, am He who comforts you. Who are you that you should be afraid Of a man who will die, And of the son of a man who will be made like grass?
13  And you forget the LORD your Maker, Who stretched out the heavens And laid the foundations of the earth; You have feared continually every day Because of the fury of the oppressor, When he has prepared to destroy. And where is the fury of the oppressor?
14  The captive exile hastens, that he may be loosed, That he should not die in the pit, And that his bread should not fail.
15  But I am the LORD your God, Who divided the sea whose waves roared — The LORD of hosts is His name.
16  And I have put My words in your mouth; I have covered you with the shadow of My hand, That I may plant the heavens, Lay the foundations of the earth, And say to Zion, ’You are My people.’"

Note: God’s word always ends with His overriding redemptive goal in focus. He only loves and desires to recover us from these foreseen cycles of departures from His will and separations in our relationship with Him. God has always been able to deliver and will ultimately deliver us once and for all to a new covenant and new creation reality where we shall forevermore be one with Him as a bride that has married her husband.

Life cycles … we are in the season of the spiritual fulfillment of the prophetic word of Almighty God. He has given us clear word and full warning that should be understood and embraced by the Church. God will not allow His redemptive plan to go unfulfilled. He will have His final say and all we who look for His appearing and who follow His Word shall awake unto righteousness and shine as the lights of heaven eternally.

God is all powerful and He has put His words in our mouths and He has covered us with His hand. He has a plan, an eternal plan, to furnish an eternity for His family.

·        Let us wake up and put on strength
·        Let us not fear the reproach of man
·        Let us not be afraid of their insults
·        Let us lift up our eyes to the heavens
·        Let us look to the Rock from which we were hewn
·        Let us shine as the light of hope in the darkness of this world

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Let It Shine!


God owes us nothing … He has given us everything … but He owes us nothing. I believe we are dangerously close to experiencing the results of God’s Divine Displeasure. He is a loving and caring parent who is upset with the world He created. This is not the first time God has been upset!

God is not happy with this world and He hasn’t been for a long, long time!

God is not happy yet God is hopeful and we too should share His hope.

The world without God in focus faces some insane moments. When I read historical accounts from periods past when evil leaders ruled over countries and empires I am in awe how mankind ever survived. We owe everything we have and all we hope to hold to a loving God who is merciful and forgiving above any reason I can fathom.

Three days ago a man who was deceived by the devil and filled with hatred planned and carried out a cruel ambush aimed at Dallas law enforcement officers. In the wake of his madness 11 police officers were shot of whom 5 were killed. We are living in a world gone mad … a world that makes no sense to any sensible person … a world in greater need of Jesus than ever before. However,  

Two days ago Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an anti evangelism bill into law forbidding Christians from witnessing to others about the saving grace of Jesus on the streets, in private homes, in rented buildings or on the internet. Churches who do not currently own their own buildings can no longer legally meet anywhere and Believers in Jesus are forbidden from inviting anyone to a Church meeting even in churches which are registered and recognized by the government.

It is now illegal for any foreigner or missionary to make any attempt to tell others about the Gospel of Jesus Christ either in writing or with speech. The government promises to aggressively pursue every angle and be a constant vigil against any infraction. Citizens will be fined, churches disbanded, organizations penalized and foreigners deported in accordance with these stringent anti-evangelism guidelines. How does this affect us?

Currently I mentor as many as 50 Russian Pastors via Skype and travel to Russia every couple of years to disciple leaders and speak to our Russian congregations. We help to provide written discipleship materials including our daily devotional which has been translated into Russian and is in daily use within the country now. I already have a meeting set up for this Friday to go over our Sunday Circles and Life Shape materials with Pastor Sergey from Russia. He will be here in our Church next Sunday on his way back to Russia. At present we are unsure how these new measures signed into law will end up affecting our churches. Of course we will continue to evangelize and disciple others with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the only thing we do not now know is at what cost!

What has happened to America and to the rest of the world? Why is there such violence in the streets of our cities? When will people wake up and realize the real enemy and the only answer? How can we help?

Today in pulpits across America and around the world the Church must be a voice speaking into the darkness and addressing the ills and injustices of the day. What would have happened if God had have ignored the darkness we read about in the first chapter of Genesis and pretended it didn’t exist or that it was ok to continue in such chaos.

As we understand darkness in its most simple form, it simply does not exist. Darkness is merely the absence of light … darkness does exist in and of itself. You cannot bring me a jar of darkness … Darkness is the place where the light is not shinning. We must continue to hold faith that the only answer to this world’s trouble comes when we continue to share the glorious light of the Gospel of Christ.

Jesus said: John 3:19  And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

John 8:12  Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life."

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

What shall we do in a world and for a world gone mad?

·        First we must pray to our Heavenly Father.

·        Next we must remember the promises and the plan of God:

Exodus 1:12  But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were in dread of the children of Israel.

Isaiah 59
19  So shall they fear The name of the LORD from the west, And His glory from the rising of the sun; When the enemy comes in like a flood, The Spirit of the LORD will lift up a standard against him.
20  "The Redeemer will come to Zion, And to those who turn from transgression in Jacob," Says the LORD.
21  "As for Me," says the LORD, "this is My covenant with them: My Spirit who is upon you, and My words which I have put in your mouth, shall not depart from your mouth, nor from the mouth of your descendants, nor from the mouth of your descendants’ descendants," says the LORD, "from this time and forevermore."

Isaiah 60
1 ¶  Arise, shine; For your light has come! And the glory of the LORD is risen upon you.
2  For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, And deep darkness the people; But the LORD will arise over you, And His glory will be seen upon you.

·        Finally, we must shine!

John 8:12  Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life."

How shall people know about the loving, caring, merciful, gracious and forgiving God unless someone tells them? We must not put our faith or the love we have for Jesus under a cover but rather we must set it up on the rooftops and raise it to the mountains so that others can see the light and come to the saving knowledge of Christ Jesus. We shall not be ashamed of the Gospel of Christ for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who will believe.

Isaiah 50
4  The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.
5  The Lord GOD hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back.
6  I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.
7  For the Lord GOD will help Me; Therefore I will not be disgraced; Therefore I have set My face like a flint, And I know that I will not be ashamed.

1.  Pray
2.  Have faith in God
3.  Share the Good News in the lost and dying world!

Pray for our Law Enforcement and First Responders
Pray for our Military
Pray for our Church Leaders
Pray for our Government
Pray for our Families

The only way to dispel the darkness is to Shine The Light!

Let It Shine!!!

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Ancient Landmarks


Two days ago our nation celebrated the 140th Anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. It was on July 4, 1776 that 56 brave men affixed their signatures to the document that serves as a landmark to the birth of the United States of America, reasonably the most powerful and blessed nation the world has ever seen.

It weighs heavy upon me when I realize that the history of the founding of our nation has all but been removed from the textbooks of primary, secondary and university level classrooms across America and indeed around the world. The story of the birth of the United States and the mission given it by Almighty God deserves to be told and retold to every generation in hopes that we might not depart from the calling given to us even before Christopher Columbus set sail on his epic voyage in 1492.

Allow me to share a bit of history with you in light of the fact that God always did and still has a plan to bless America and make its people a blessing to the world. Everywhere America goes, so goes the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

·        Columbus & Queen Isabella of Spain
·        1493 Pope Alexander VI & the Papal Bull (Inter Caetera)
·        Spanish Exploration & Evangelism 1500’s
·        New England Settlements 1600’s
·        British Colonization
·        1700’s
·        King George III (King of England – 1760 to 1820)
·        The Declaration of Independence
·        1776 to 1889
·        General George Washington
·        President George Washington
·        Benjamin Franklin
·        John Jay

We should never forget!!!

Deuteronomy 19:14 ¶  "You shall not remove your neighbor’s landmark, which the men of old have set, in your inheritance which you will inherit in the land that the LORD your God is giving you to possess.

Deuteronomy 27:17  ’Cursed is the one who moves his neighbor’s landmark.’ And all the people shall say, ’Amen!’

Job 24:2  "Some remove landmarks; They seize flocks violently and feed on them;

Proverbs 22:28 ¶  Do not remove the ancient landmark Which your fathers have set.

Proverbs 23:10 ¶  Do not remove the ancient landmark, Nor enter the fields of the fatherless;

The Declaration of Independence: A Transcription

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
1)   He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
2)   He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
3)   He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
4)   He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
5)   He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
6)   He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
7)   He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
8)   He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
9)   He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
10)               He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
11)               He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
12)               He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
13)               For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
14)               For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
15)               For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
16)               For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
17)               For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
18)               For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
19)               For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
20)               For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
21)               He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
22)               He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
23)               He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
24)               He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
25)               He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The 56 signatures on the Declaration appear in the positions indicated:
Column 1
   Button Gwinnett
   Lyman Hall
   George Walton
Column 2
North Carolina:
   William Hooper
   Joseph Hewes
   John Penn
South Carolina:
   Edward Rutledge
   Thomas Heyward, Jr.
   Thomas Lynch, Jr.
   Arthur Middleton
Column 3
John Hancock
Samuel Chase
William Paca
Thomas Stone
Charles Carroll of Carrollton
George Wythe
Richard Henry Lee
Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Harrison
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
Carter Braxton
Column 4
   Robert Morris
   Benjamin Rush
   Benjamin Franklin
   John Morton
   George Clymer
   James Smith
   George Taylor
   James Wilson
   George Ross
   Caesar Rodney
   George Read
   Thomas McKean
Column 5
New York:
   William Floyd
   Philip Livingston
   Francis Lewis
   Lewis Morris
New Jersey:
   Richard Stockton
   John Witherspoon
   Francis Hopkinson
   John Hart
   Abraham Clark

Column 6
New Hampshire:
   Josiah Bartlett
   William Whipple
   Samuel Adams
   John Adams
   Robert Treat Paine
   Elbridge Gerry
Rhode Island:
   Stephen Hopkins
   William Ellery
   Roger Sherman
   Samuel Huntington
   William Williams
   Oliver Wolcott
New Hampshire:
   Matthew Thornton