Posts Tagged With: Spirit

“My Favorite Chapter of the Bible”

I NEVER THOUGHT I WOULD HAVE A FAVORITE CHAPTER OF THE BIBLE. I ALWAYS CONSIDERED THAT TO BE “MISSION IMPOSSIBLE”.

So I can’t explain what happened to me the other day when I was having my morning cup of Bible and I read this chapter and it was like, “Wow, I think this is my favorite chapter.”

I have memorized Psalms chapters 1, 23, 91, and 112 so I can quote and pray them on a regular basis, but my favorite chapter is none of them. I also love the chapters containing the Sermon on the Mount! (Matthew 5-7) But it’s none of them either. So imagine a drum roll if you will, as I reveal my favorite chapter to be: St. John 3. (And it is not because of 3:16, even though that is such an important verse, but it is the whole chapter! Even from the way it starts to the way it ends.)

Imagine this, a Pharisee, a sage, a religious leader, a mystic, a seeker of God and truth sneaking around in the dark of night to have a secret meeting with the nomadic rebel teacher, Jesus! In dark of night! This man is desperate for a private counsel with this mysterious man of God known as Jesus, but he doesn’t want his fellow religious leaders to know. He is risking his reputation, his status , everything, to ask this Prophet a few questions. He wants to see for himself! One on one! So he comes like a ninja in the night, hiding in shadows, looking over his shoulder as he hurries along to his secret meeting, and what does Jesus tell him?

“You must be born again.” (Whaaat?)

Can you imagine? Nicodemus is not your average Bible student, and he is not a fool. Most likely he is above average in intellect and very serious about this secret mission. He has seen some of the miracles and he knows this Jesus must be sent from God, but his answers seem to come from another world! He confuses everyone with riddles and parables. Whaaat?

Jesus begins going deeper with the riddle. But can Nicodemus follow him deeper? You must be born of water and the Holy Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life.

I can imagine that Nico’s head is spinning as Jesus then say, “The wind blows wherever it wants. Just as you can hear the wind but can’t tell where it comes from or where it is going, so you can’t explain how people are born of the Spirit.” (WOW!)

NOW IT GETS EVEN BETTER! JESUS CHALLENGES NICODEMUS!

“You are a respected Jewish teacher, and yet you don’t understand these things?” (WOE!)

This chapter starts out like a book that grabs you from the very first page and just when you think the plot can’t get anymore exciting or intense, it does!

“I assure you, we tell you what we know and have seen…if you don’t believe me when I tell you about earthly things, how can you possibly believe if I tell you about heavenly things? No one has ever gone to heaven and returned. But the Son of Man has come down from heaven.”

IN OTHER WORDS, I’M THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN TELL YOU WHAT I HAVE SEEN WITH MY OWN EYES, NICODEMUS. I’M NOT TELLING YOU WHAT I READ IN A BOOK. I’M TELLING YOU HEAVENLY DETAILS I HAVE SEEN WITH MY OWN EYES. EVERYTHING I DO AND SPEAK COMES FROM ONE WHO HAS BEEN THERE, AND I HAVE COME FROM THERE, AND I’M GIVING YOU FIRST HAND ACCOUNTS OF WHAT MAN HAS NEVER SEEN! (WOE & WOW!!!)

After this is when he explains how greatly God loves mankind, that he has sent me to save them, and whosoever believes on him shall be saved. There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him! However, for those who do not believe, they are judged already. Jesus has not come to judge, but to save us from the judgment already on us!

Now another climatic moment comes when Jesus says, “And the judgment is based on this fact:”… Now stop the movie right here for a moment. This is where a stupid commercial break cuts in and leaves you hanging! The judgment is based on this fact! (What is he going to say? What is it all based on? I can hardly wait to know!) Commercial finally over!

“God’s light came into the world…but people loved the darkness more than the light…for their actions were evil.  All who do evil hate the light…and refuse to go near it…for fear their sins will be exposed.

But those who do what is right…come to the light…so others can see they are doing what God wants.”

What a thunderous revelation! It all comes down to whether we are drawn to light, or not? Whether we love the darkness or the light? God’s light came into the world, but man loved darkness more! This is a strong word of revelation Nicodemus is receiving in the dark of the night!

But the chapter goes on: Nicodemus exits, and John the Baptist enters in! John reveals that Jesus must become greater and greater, while he will decrease, fade into the background. Then he confirms that Jesus has “Come form above, and is greater than anyone else!” We are earthly, he explains, but Jesus comes from heaven and testifies of what he has seen and heard with his own eyes and ears!

AND THEN A VERY SAD STATEMENT: BUT HOW FEW BELIEVE WHAT HE TELLS THEM!

This is a major point, John 3 makes it not once, but twice! Once by Jesus himself, and then by John the Baptist! Jesus is first hand witness to the realities and glories of heaven, God’s Kingdom, and he came here to show and tell!

BUT HOW FEW BELIEVE HIM.

When I read this chapter I am hit with so many waves of feelings and revelation that I stand amazed. Questions roll through my mind like, why am I “attracted” to the light, and others are not? And also, how can anyone not be attracted to his light?

In verse 44 John reveals that Jesus has been given the Holy Spirit without limit! So…am I limited? What measure do I have? Can I increase that measure? WOW. Now I am challenged as to what I shall do?

Finally, a thunderous conclusion. This chapter keeps hitting to the very end.

“Any who believes in God’s  Son has eternal life.” (The AMAZING grace of God. What a great treasure to be rejected by so many.)

“Anyone who doesn’t obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgment.”

I see the lightning flash, I hear the thunder roll, and the chapter ends.

ftf06

Advertisements
Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Living with Fire / Feeding the Flame

ftf06

GUARDIANS OF THE FIRE! KEEPERS OF THE FLAME!

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

You can’t take it with you, or can you?

We’ve all heard the saying, “You can’t take it with you.” In death we leave it all behind. The money, big house, hot car, all those material things we worked so hard for. We spent so much of our life pursueing these things, but what are they worth now? As Ecclesiastes would say, they pass to other hands, and who is to say that all your hard work does not end up in the hands of a fool?

However, there actually are a few things that go with you. Have you thought about it? Maybe not? We spend so much time pursueing the things we can’t take, and we fail to realize the old saying is not completely true! We would do well to seriously consider what will go with us in the grave.

I can think of three things that go with you. Maybe you can think of more, but for my purposes these three will do. Most important of all is your SOUL, this is your most valuable possession! However, your SOUL will be affected by the other two. When you realize how few things you can actually take with you, it should cause us to put a very high value on those items.

What value is your SOUL compared to earthly pleasures you may be seeking? The soul is eternal, and may be possessed by you eternally if you choose. What other possessions do you have that you can say that of? But God’s Word says you lost it! Sin has separated us from God and the wages of sin is death! What tragedy it is to lose the most important thing we can eternally possess!

This would be more tragic than losing your home, money, health, anything you may “think” you own, because you do not really own those things. You will let go of everyone of them. You will leave them behind as your SOUL passes through the veil of death to meet its Maker.

“For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” (Matt. 16:26a)

Lose his own soul. His own soul. It’s yours to lose.

(Luke 21:19) “In your patience possess ye your souls.” (Jesus speaking to his disciples.)

So what are the other two things you take with you? Your words and deeds. These will be the things whereby your SOUL is judged. What do our words and deeds reveal about us? Your words and actions will reveal if you ever truely received Christ as your saviour. It will not be your words alone, but your words and deeds. God’s Word says you may judge a tree by its’ fruit.

True salvation, the saving of our soul so we may possess it eternally, will show up in your words and deeds. Not only when you speak those words of repentance unto God, admitting you are a sinner, and how sorry you are, and your desire to follow after him, but in your actions, proving if you meant those words or not.

You are your soul. If you die in a lost condition, then you have lost the most precious thing God gave you. You were born in this lost condition, and you failed to believe, you failed to make a right choice and accept God’s tremendous offer of grace. And for what reason? To pursue a bunch of stuff you can’t take with you? So sad.

This is my first time working my blogsite from the downtown Indianapolis Library. I am shoulder to shoulder with others. My Bible is spread open on the table as I write. Four different people have set next to me during this time. As I get better at this it is my hope that a door will open with someone.

I’m not use to the distractions going on around here, compared to my writing nook at home. I have struggled to write my thoughts today, but the potential is worth it. This is just my first time. We actually just got our Internet service back up at home for one-third the price we were paying, but I intend to come here 2-4 times a month, praying for a door to open, and then another, and another. It will happen.

I come here on Tuesdays because there is a Southern Baptist Home Group meeting in this downtown area at 7:00 pm. So I have this one big day a week. I work till four, hit the Library till 6:30, and the Home Group at 7:00. This is my Gotham. I can’t expect anything to happen if I’m not out here. Things are happening, and I hope to write more on those things soon.

LET THE RIPPLES GO FORTH!

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | 5 Comments

“Do You have Your Gotham?” > Chapter Sixteen

gotham city 06

A VISION IS BIRTHED, A QUEST CONTINUES, A MISSION IS SERVED.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“The Horrendous Thing that Shaped Your Life”

Batman

Nobody has a perfect life. We live on planet earth where there is no such thing as perfection. When I look back on my own life I see 2 things that affected me in a major way, things that had to be overcome in my pursuit of God, and it was God that enabled me to overcome, so that I could pursue him more. I will share those 2 things shortly, but first I want to talk more about “GOTHAM”. Because some of you still don’t get it, and if you read this article, maybe you will “get it”.

If we take the fictional story of Gotham and make a life metaphor of it, certain things immediately rise to the top. Of course, the horrendous thing a boy experienced as his two parents were shot dead right in front of his eyes. This was a young Bruce Wayne, and it shaped the course of his life. This was a defining moment for him. For many people in our day and age, this might not be fictional. Their parent, or parents, died in a violent way when they were young, maybe even right in front of their eyes.

Bruce’s parents were not themselves violent, but violence came upon them. Some of you may have had parents involved in bad things and violence came upon them as a result of that, but still…which fork of the road will you choose? To become one who fights against evil for the sake of the weak and innocent, or one who decides to turn to evil, because of the violence that invaded your young life?

I want to stay in this time period of the young Bruce Wayne, because Hollywood has allowed us to do so, and given us another hero in Detective Gordon. It has been interesting watching very imaginative writers create this world of a young Catwoman, Penguin, Riddler, Ivy, and others, including Detective Gordon. Of course I am talking about the T.V. series “Gotham”, and if you haven’t seen it, you might want to check it out.

Gotham was such a “Snake Pit”! And into this world comes a young, brave, heroic, and honest Detective. Can he be corrupted? Can he be broken? Can he be bribed? Can we entice him from his high-ideas to join us in our bed of snakes? Oh what a world of evil and corruption Detective Gordon takes on, before there is any Batman to help him.

Detective Jim Gordon. Talk about peer pressure! The police department is so corrupted that he is practically taking on the whole mafia alone! And the Penguin comes to him saying: “There’s a war coming, Jim. There will be so much blood in the streets!” In our day today, there is a war already raging between God and evil.

Yes I said God and evil, not good and evil. There are plenty of good people fighting evil in the way good people do, BUT… God’s people are called to fight evil in a different way, in a Priestly way, and if you claim to be a God people, have you obeyed that way? Or will there be so much blood in the streets, AND ON YOUR HANDS.

There is so much more I could say about this, but I believe I will let the Holy Spirit finish that conversation. As for the 2 horrendous things in my life? I am fortunate, raised in a Christian family my “horrendous events” would not be considered “horrendous” by most people, but they did have a major affect on me and the course of my life. So I will quickly share these 2 things in very “short form”, so as not to bore you.

ONE: I was popular in school until the fifth grade, when my parents moved to an isolated farm in the country. I was so isolated that I became extremely introverted. I didn’t know how to talk to people. Bad part was, I was comfortable that way and didn’t want to change. I didn’t realize how much this was affecting me in a bad way. I was deathly afraid of speaking in front of people. So…when it was time to graduate I should have went to college and probably become a teacher, or journalist. Something to that affect, but I was so afraid of standing in front of people, how could I be a teacher? So I eventually wound up a truck driver. Go figure. The point is, when God started moving on me to teach his word? Wow…I’m telling you, you don’t know how real the power of God became to me when I finally broke free of my introversion. People today are amazed I was ever an introvert to the extreme, but I was, and God delivered me as I obeyed him. There were some good points to my seclusion. I probably would not be the “spiritual” teacher I am today, had it not been for my isolation in nature with God. But had I not fought the battle to overcome my greatest fear, I would have missed so much God was offering me.

TWO: As a young man riding my bicycle down a two-lane blacktop, which I did a lot of bike riding to escape the farm, but one day, I just happened upon a very colorful magazine lying in the middle of the road, pages flapping in the breeze, and as I rolled by, I looked down, and saw it was a “PLAYBOY Magazine”. I know I should have kept on rolling, but I didn’t, and thus began a porno addiction which led to stealing, because I was too young to buy. They say Prono is an addiction as strong as cocaine. I’ve never had the drug, but I know it was only the power of God, seeking more of God, that finally delivered me from the Porno. It was not an easy battle, but I chose to, with the help of God, fight evil, rather than join it.

In conclusion: The personal story I am currently writing called: “Gotham”, should be a must read for every Christian who considers themselves “average”, but wonders what might be possible if they truly surrendered their will completely to God. For one thing, God will COVER you with his anointing, and the average Christian can be a Caped Crusader for God, fighting evil not in the way good people do, but in “the way” that ONLY God’s people can do.

Christians were originally called people of “The Way”.  Do you get it now?

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“JUST JESUS”

cappuccino01

Merry Christmas everybody! Is there really any such thing as “Just Jesus”?

As we enter this Christmas week I just want Jesus straight. In saying that, I realize that takes in a huge panorama of possibilities, but I want my foam, fluff, and syrup in my cappuccino, not Jesus. Give me Jesus straight. Not watered down and sugar coated. A world wrestling with pain and sin, even wanting to take Jesus out of Christmas, which is like trying to take cold out of snow, how can a world be so upside down to even think you can take the reason out of a holiday and still have reason for the holiday? Sheesh! Too much cappuccino has gone to our heads! My point exactly! If the pagans want a Christmas without Jesus, let them come up with their own holiday.

If you want to understand this better, I hope you will read the below article, if you have not already. I love a good latte or cappuccino too, but when it comes to Jesus we need him straight. I felt this important enough to hit it twice.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

“Playing Your Cards Right” #6

Cards 01

Every day life presents us with a hand to play. We all have to work with the cards in our own hand. Many times we complain about the cards we feel like God has dealt us. However, I think God is telling us we need to learn how to play our hands better. I look back on my own life and cringe sometimes when I see how little I understood on how to play my best hand with what I was holding. Credit cards? In most cases, big mistake! (Just one example.) So if you are a Christian, here is a tip on how to play a better hand, and it is not about credit cards. 🙂

Do you know why breakfast is called breakfast? Because you have been fasting all night! And you are about to break that fast with break-fast. Cute, huh. But here is the point, how many of you know that fasting, the denying of our flesh, seems to add power to our prayers? True, this fast does not require great deal of sacrifice, but when was the last time you truly fasted? So why not take advantage of this card we do have in our hand?

YOU CAN PLAY A BETTER HAND! I know a lot of people say they are not a “Morning Person”, but a lot of people don’t like to read either, and yet God has given us a very big book to read! The point is this, if you’re willing to make the living sacrifice to be the faithful priest who offers up a “real” prayer of the morning, the first-fruits of your day, before you break the fast, you will play a better hand. God will supernaturally move through your priesthood and you will play a more powerful hand.

The fact is that you do have a fast to offer up to God. Add a sincere prayer life to that and see what happens. Two strong principals of God’s Word will be working for you. 1.) You are fasting. 2.) You are giving God the firstfruits of your day. If if you’re not a morning person, then it is even a greater sacrifice you’re offering up. You can’t lose! 🙂

Now go and fulfill your Priesthood in Christ, and play a truly Christian hand.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“More than a Christian” #4

What is this Spiritual House the Lord has built?

Abraham > Heb.11:10 > “For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.”

Jesus > Heb. 8:2 > “A minister of the sanctuary, and the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.”

Us > Eph. 2: 21-22 > “In whom all the building fitly framed together growth unto a holy temple in the Lord; in whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”

Over 4,000 years just to lay the foundation of the Prophets and the Apostles, with Christ as the corner stone! God sowed a seed into the “natural” first, that would eventually produce a “Spiritual” house! The Old Covenant natural, and the New Covenant spiritual!

I Cor. 15:46 > “Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual.”

I have gone to a lot of trouble trying to lay a foundation of scripture to help us see the importance of what we are called to be, more than a good person! There is much that can be taught at this point, such as the starting point in Genesis 3:15, when God planted the seed while Adam and Eve was still just barely in the Garden of Eden. He spoke this seed into existence while still in the Garden! (I think that is so cool. God is so smooth.)

As the seed began growing in a physical manner, we see the nation Israel, and God takes the tribe of Levi and ordains them to be the priesthood of Israel. One tribe out of the twelve was called to be a tribe of priest unto the Most High God. But not so in the House that Christ has built!

NOT DEAD COWS AND GOATS, BUT LIVING SACRIFICES, A HOLY PRIESTHOOD UNTO THE MOST HIGH GOD! NOT JUST ONE PERSON OUT OF EVERY TWELVE, BUT EACH ONE OF US HAS BEEN CALLED TO BE A LIVING STONE IN THIS SPIRITUAL HOUSE! WE ARE HIS PRIESTHOOD!

AND BASED ON WHAT I’M SEEING TODAY IN AMERICA, THAT MEANS BEING MORE THAN A CHRISTIAN.

DO YOU SEE THE VISION? GOD’S VISION FOR OVER 4,000 YEARS?

ARE YOU CONTENT TO SIMPLY BE A GOOD PERSON, WHEN GOD IS OFFERING YOU HIS PRIESTHOOD IN CHRIST?

You see, these spiritual sacrifices are powerful, and open portals that will open in no other way. In our Priesthood is a life we will never know if all we want to be is a good person. God spent over 4,000 years laying just the foundation for this. He spoke it in the Garden of Eden. The Son laid down his life for this, shed his blood, and took on death itself! And now the Holy Spirit is looking for all those who desire his Anointing, his training, his empowering, to be what God has called us to be, his Priesthood in the earth, more than just a good person, a spiritual house, a holy Priesthood, able to offer up spiritual sacrifices unto him.

SO WHAT’S SO GREAT ABOUT THIS PRIESTHOOD?

To be continued…

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

“More than a Christian” #2

OUR FOUNDATION SCRIPTURE: 1 PETER 2:5

FOCUS > “YE ALSO, AS LIVELY STONES, ARE BUILT UP A SPIRITUAL HOUSE,…”

A preacher opened my eyes one day to the fact that God never referred to the nation of Israel as > “a spiritual house”.

The sons, who would become the twelve tribes of Israel were born from the seed of a man called Jacob (one who undermines), whose name was changed to Israel (A prince of God). After that time we see the nation Israel referred to as the House of Jacob, or the House of Israel, or possibly the House of Judah, or House of David, but never as a spiritual house.

SO WHAT DOES IT MEAN THAT GOD REFERRED TO THE HOUSE THAT CHRIST BUILT AS A SPIRITUAL HOUSE?

It saddens me what passes for Christianity these days. A friend of mine pointed out that in Antioc, followers of Jesus were first called Christians, and they did not call themselves that, but those who watched them and knew them began calling them Christians. There are a lot of “good” people in the world who do “good” things, but what is a Christian?

If a stranger could watch your every move for 24 hours, at the end of that day would he call you a good person, or a Christian?

How many days would it take? Would it take 7 days, when he might see you go to Church, and might speculate you could be a Christian? And would he have to weigh his speculation against the day you flipped the finger at the man who cut you off in traffic, the dirty joke you told at work, a few curse words that slipped, the secret porno at night, the people you never said one word to about Christ, the wife you slapped around, the people you stepped on at work to get that fat bonus, the fact you have no prayer life, your Bible sets untouched all week, you worship only in a Church building, and there are parts of the Bible you don’t even believe, let alone practice. You know, he might decide you’re not even a good person, let alone a Christian.

IN AMERICA, DO WE NEED TO BE MORE THAN A CHRISTIAN TODAY?

IF THE AVERAGE AMERICAN CHRISTIAN SPENDS 5 MINUTES OR LESS A DAY IN PRAYER, THEN HAS THE TIME COME THAT WE NEED TO BE MORE? ARE WE REALLY TOO BUSY? IF SO, WHY?

What then? What do we need to be? What is more than a Christian? Give me a vision!

To be continued…

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Wind Vessel”

His Wind in my sails, that is my goal.

…..The oceans before me, God’s breath in my soul.

Filled with His Spirit, He leads me on.

…..My life is a journey, His Wind is my song.

New worlds a’seeking, new places explore!

…..As God leads me onward, upward I soar.

A Wind vessel am I, with places to go.

…..Destiny awaits…as in Him I flow.

Drawing me upward with delight and dismay.

…..To always discover…His love each day.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blog at WordPress.com.