Acts 2:47 And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.
It’s Autumn Festival Time in the mountains of Western North Carolina. Like a chorus girl Nature puts on her loudest clothes, as though warning us that she will be back someday. The locals sell crafts they made all summer, apple pies, and jellies and the mushrooms a retired guy collects from the woods. It’s the in gathering.
God promises His own Harvest
But what about the harvest of God? My Bible tells me that there are hundreds of souls being saved and that God is doing this daily, even though I do not see them or know where they are. Where are they?
I have a disabled friend who shops in the cheapest markets – his income doesn’t cover much in the way of food. He offers to pray for others. He does this everywhere he goes. Even his chiropractor gives him free time because he prays for all his patients when he is there.
The fact that we do not see it doesn’t mean God isn’t doing it, and that His people are not active. According to statistics, people are becoming more religious. https://www.theepochtimes.com/americans-and-the-world-are-becoming-more-not-less-religious_3003424.html
And persecution is on the rise too. https://www.theepochtimes.com/religious-persecution-a-global-crisis-needing-urgent-action-us-ambassador-says_3004405.html
Individuals become change agents
But where the interest in God is high, there also is the opportunity for you personally to act. A simple invitation is all you need – not a full blown sales pitch. You will be surprised at your results, sometimes months or even years later.
You say God does not exist? Whoopie! I’ve decided taxes don’t exist. I hate paying taxes. If they don’t exist I don’t have to pay!
We’ve only just begun. DNA – that does not exist. Male-female, that does not exist. Old age (I get to live forever) does not exist. Who knows where this can go.
This is the single sentence indicating what is required to be saved, that is to find that you are accepted into that group of human beings who will have a place in heaven. It does not indicate anything more than that although you find ministers add a great deal to it.
It has two conditional elements. Nothing God does with man is without conditions except one – that all men are NOT saved just by being born into this fallen world. That is the condition in which we find ourselves. People who do not like this condition must be born some place else, a situation we have not as yet identified.
Romans 10:9 If you confess with your mouth “Jesus is Lord” and <if> in your heart you have faith that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
For the observer in this situation there is a separate condition which helps you recognize the validity of the salvation, because, after all, people can say anything easily, even glibly, and not be sincere. For that we have this verse:
1 John 4:2 This is how you know if a spirit comes from God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come as a human is from God.
A person should be able to say this: “I believe that Jesus Christ is God come in the flesh.” I have tested this verse and it works. The person I asked to repeat this was not able to repeat it no matter how hard she tried. No matter, in fact, how hard I tried to get her to say it. She could not, indicating to me that she was not saved.
We have no right to tell people they are saved if they are not.
And we also have no right to tell people they are born again when they are not. For this to happen something quite different must occur.
John 3:3 There was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a Jewish leader. 2 He came to Jesus at night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God, for no one could do these miraculous signs that you do unless God is with him.
3 Jesus answered, “I assure you, unless someone is born anew, it’s not possible to see God’s kingdom.”
4 Nicodemus asked, “How is it possible for an adult to be born? It’s impossible to enter the mother’s womb for a second time and be born, isn’t it?”
5 Jesus answered, “I assure you, unless someone is born of water and the Spirit, it’s not possible to enter God’s kingdom. 6 Whatever is born of the flesh is flesh, and whatever is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Don’t be surprised that I said to you, ‘You must be born anew.’ 8 God’s Spirit blows wherever it wishes. You hear its sound, but you don’t know where it comes from or where it is going. It’s the same with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
The Kingdom is visualized in the spiritual eye
The result of bring born again is the ability to “see the kingdom.” Clearly this means to see with a spiritual eye. There is no external physical evidence of the kingdom of God. We must believe this by faith. And as we develop our spiritual senses, we come into more and more kingdom knowledge. Many people never see the kingdom. Of course they will after they die because the heavenly kingdom is indeed where Jesus is King.
But the Kingdom we talk about here on earth is internal. This passage describes heaven, but it also describes a place on this earth where people live in a risen state, because they have found that God is the same here as he is there, and they walk in newness of life. Galatians 3:
26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.“
I know many black people who are simply not aware of being black. They are just children of God. They are at home in their own skin. They see themselves as spiritual beings doing God’s work and living out the plans God gave them. That is what it means to be a Kingdom person.
Non-kingdom people do not recognize Kingdom people. Non-kingdom people have qualifications – they look at a person as female, or of a different culture, or uneducated, or gifted, comparing themselves to others. Here is an example of what happens when a Kingdom woman and a Saved man have a confrontation.
Beth Meyer was scolded by John MacArthur who said she should not teach. John is a church person. Church members live under the rules of the natural world with employees, buildings, mortgages, leadership committees, and sometimes stratified liturgies. Those who work together in the natural world require rules.
Kingdom people do not. Kingdom people may have communion on Tuesday night in an Italian restaurant and it makes no difference. Kingdom people are not locked into the natural trappings of religion.
John MacArthur is part of the Church, that group of leaders who take the saved human beings which God supplies to them to teach and guide them into better living patterns. Kingdom people get their orders from the Holy Spirit not other humans.
You can easily see how this confusion can lead to misunderstandings. A woman may marry a man who says he is a born again Christian but after a few years he starts running around with other women. She tearfully wants to know what happened.
“He said he was a Christian,” she moans, and indeed he was saved, just not born again, because the born again person is faithful to the moral law. And that is only one test of many.
How does this mix-up happen? The main reason is that we are all sloppy thinkers. The Bible is well-written and God had 4,000 years to clear up any typos or other problems in it. But we slide over verses, adding information and assumptions to them that are simply not there.
When we want to know truth we must go back to the book.
You might like to check this person out. Click on these
and the late John Paul Jackson:
For additional study there is Dr. Paul Cox of California who goes into not only dream interpretation and symbolism, but also dimensions.
(6) “Also I gave you cleanness of teeth in all your cities.
And lack of bread in all your places;
Yet you have not returned to Me,”
Says the LORD.
(7) “I also withheld rain from you,
When there were still three months to the harvest.
I made it rain on one city,
I withheld rain from another city.
One part was rained upon,
And where it did not rain the part withered.
(8) So two or three cities wandered to another city to drink water,
But they were not satisfied;
Yet you have not returned to Me,”
Says the LORD.
It’s pretty clear. God is trying to get our attention. Ebola, ISIS, 80 inches of snow in Boston (and more coming) and throughout the Northeast, Northern California drowning and Southern California burning up, crops, parched, gangs and violence in the cities (Missouri), Lyme disease (Texas) burning heat wave (Oklahoma), beheadings for Brits and many others, missionaries killed, new diseases attacking children primarily, antibiotics that no longer work, flu vaccines that only help 1/3rd etc. etc.
(9) “I blasted you with blight and mildew.
When your gardens increased,
Your fig trees,
And your olive trees,
The locust devoured them;
Yet you have not returned to Me,”
Says the LORD.
(10) “I sent among you a plague after the manner of Egypt;
Your young men I killed with a sword,
Along with your captive horses;
I made the stench of your camps come up into your nostrils;
Yet you have not returned to Me,”
Says the LORD.
The mass shootings are a plague. Drug addiction is a plague. The embarrassing failure of the American press is a plague. Corruption in government is a plague. Mysterious diseases like autism and Alzheimer are a plague.
(11) “I overthrew some of you,
As God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah,
And you were like a firebrand plucked from the burning;
Yet you have not returned to Me,”
Says the LORD.
The Congressional Democrats conducting witch hunts, hoaxes, and constant impeachment talk is a plague.
God wants our attention. Does He have it yet?
#climatechange #SodomandGomorrah #fakenews #corruption #plagues #drought #mildew #beheadings #addiction #autism #Alzheimer #war
And we thought when communism lost in Eastern Europe it was silenced. Maybe not.
I discovered this excellent newspaper which compensates fir the fact that our TV and standard newspapers have failed to report truth.
Psalm 68:21 Yes, God will shatter the heads of his enemies— the very skulls of those who walk in guilt.
Psalm 138: 19 If only, God, you would kill the wicked!
If only murderers would get away from me—
20 the people who talk about you, but only for wicked schemes;
the people who are your enemies,
who use your name as if it were of no significance.[e]
21 Don’t I hate everyone who hates you?
Don’t I despise those who attack you?
22 Yes, I hate them—through and through!
They’ve become my enemies too.
Simmie and her husband are immigrants from Indonesia. She escaped from China and is an implacable foe of Communism. Together they run a successful beauty shop known for high quality work. They both wear the brown prayer beads that identify Buddhists; both are very happy and fulfilled in their lives. They remember President Ronald Reagan’s defeat of the Soviets and are conservative voters.
I like my appointments early so when Simmie shows up I am already there. She takes about 5 minutes before work to stand in front of the little plastic Buddha in a corner of the shop. She gives a daily offering, which is often fruit, and says some prayers standing there silently. (Buddhists in China eat the fruit for lunch.) Orientals are a quiet sort anyway. Then she begins her work day.
I marvel at this sight. Here is a plastic Buddha manufactured by presses in the Pacific Rim (even by those new copy machines filled with liquid plastic) and painted with fake gold. Sometimes these Buddhas are ceramic and covered in real gold. But no matter. I wonder, “Whatever good will that do? This is just plastic; he can’t talk back.“
Most people, even some Buddhists, don’t know that Buddha did not claim to be God, only that he had the wisdom of God. And in fact, many people are wise.
This is a god who cannot answer.
My God can talk back. I want my God to tell me, “That is a stupid idea,” or – “You are on the right track.” I left Texas because God said, ”Start packing.” I could not be happier with the results of the move. Buddha can’t tell me that.
In China I asked one teacher, a Buddhist, “What is God’s name?” She answered, “Shang Di.” That is the Chinese word for the creator God. Then I asked, “Do you know His first name?” She did not.
I said, “His first name is Jesus.” Last October someone told me she accepted Jesus as Messiah, finally after 10 years. These things take time.
What do we do with the Simmies in our midst? We need to tell them that our god can talk back. Not through a priest, or even a prophet, but directly. I love hearing testimonies of people who have Jesus show up – sur-prise, sur-prise. He will do it. When Christians pray.
As the political situation becomes more difficult, not just in the USA but also and most urgently worldwide, more and more people ask when will God come to judge the earth. Almost all information on this is divisive and unclear. Isaiah speaks of the Day of Wrath.
Isa 13:13-15 – The day of wrath is the day of the lord. (KJV) 13 Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the Lord of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger. 14 And it shall be as the chased roe, and as a sheep that no man taketh up: they shall every man turn to his own people, and flee every one into his own land. 15 Every one that is found shall be thrust through; and every one that is joined unto them shall fall by the sword.
Here is where everyone returns to his own land. Whether this applies to us believers is a matter of discussion and on whether you believe the rapture occurs before the day of the Lord, or after this passage or whether you believe it is later on. Definitely one thing is sure – we will all decide on which side of Right or Wrong we stand.
There are 3 interpretations of the “day of the Lord.”
1 – Believers are raptured and watch the events as a cloud of witnesses.
2 – Believers stay here through the judgment and are protected, hidden in some safe place.
3 – Believers stay through the judgment and act as helpers to those whom God wants to save because God has said, “occupy ‘til I come” so we do not leave our post.
The answer to this question depends on timing. Since God lives in eternity, when He speaks of time its relevance to us is like walking through a mist. When He says “soon” we cannot know if this is 10 years or 100.
The word “flee” home tells us that people are not returning home voluntarily. Something has driven them to leave in a big hurry.
These questions have no universal agreement as of yet. I feel sure they will be straightened out in due time. For now, I’d suggest that no one can be absolutely sure.
#rapture #church #dayoftheLord #everyonereturnshome
You probably have forgotten The Bathroom Bill of 2016. North Carolinians remember but others do not because it did not involve them. It is a lesson in how Democrats propose legislation that will damage political opponents
The Nazis knew that Jews were taught to be modest, and that to be naked in public was a sign of shame. Consequently the prisoners taken to the death camps were required to remove all their clothes in public in front of men especially but also in front of the opposite sex. The purpose was to keep them docile and submitted. It worked. I saw all this in a PBS documentary “Swimming in Auschwitz.”
Leap forward 50 years to the United States of America where radicals have purposed to create a whole new culture, to change the American lifestyle of freedom from fear to one of caution, suspicion and withdrawal.
Gender Identity, part of the Anti-Christian goal of politics
The Bathroom bill is a public law in many areas of the country including such heavily LGBT places as Houston, Texas. The bill requires women especially, but also other modest people and children to risk being seen by strangers of the opposite sex in a traditionally private place. This has created a whole new social problem where public behavior is restrained from some shopping and other public events for fear of exposure and possibly attacks by people who look to be one gender but claim, without proof, to be another.
This bill is but one more attempt by Democrats to make the Americans as docile as possible. But will it work? It certainly has made many very angry, and increased interest in elections. But do the Transgender folks know they are being used? I rather doubt it. The Jews swept up into cattle cars never envisioned the gas chambers and ovens where they would lose their lives as well as their societies in Europe.
Jews say Today “Never Again”
Netanyahu of Israel said recently that the Jews in Europe went like sheep to the slaughter. He also said, We will never do that again. His promise to his nation is to not give up one inch of Israel to anyone for any reason.
Will America do that?
The scripture is clear. Jesus paid the price for every man’s sin by the blood shed at his death. But because of the limitations of life, He could not actually give his life literally for every person. If that were so He would need to be born, mature and then die for billions upon billions of people, the exact number we do not know. We do know that the number of souls God created in heaven prior to our birth is huge. So literal birth-death is physically impossible.
How then could Jesus die for each Man and still die for mankind as a whole?
Salvation by Negotiation
It was done by negotiation. Consider that you have a large piece of acreage for sale. No one else is bidding on it. Satan already has his claws into the property and will not give it up; in fact he has sole custody thanks to egregious mistakes by Adam. (And lest we congratulate ourselves remember that we would have been just as rebellious as the First Pair.) The human race is both physically and spiritually doomed.
Since Jesus could not be born billions of times, He would have to negotiate the price. From the foundation of the world Elohim (God in Hebrew) counseled together to select “the agreed upon price.” The price was high. The sacrifice would need to be absolutely sinless, the very opposite of the condition of Man, and he would need to be born just as anyone else and go through life reacting to evil in perfect, sinless obedience. The Old Testament law regarding sacrifices is not a bore if you notice how the priests followed the very process by which a sacrifice was selected. Jesus fit perfectly.
You can’t hide sin in man
Can you image what a hard test this is? Look at your tot in a high chair, crying “MINE!” at the top of his lungs. Rebellion is deep in the heart of man, no matter the size. He is not a bad child; he is merely human. (Proverbs 22:15) It comes with the territory.
Sin only Through the Father’s Line
The perfect plan required that the savior be born sinless without the taint of human error. Mary, Jesus’ mother, did not have to be sinless because the Sin is transferred through the father’s line….. You know, like father, like son. (Genesis 3:17)
The only way a sinless child can be brought forth is if the Father is God Himself, guaranteeing that the DNA of this child is unique in all the universe. Then the blood also would be sinless. Satan can’t fake that – ever, which is why the Kingdom of Evil fell apart in despair after realizing it had engineered the salvation of man and its own demise as well. (1 Cor 2:8)
The devil had a giant surprise
From The Message, modern translation: God’s wisdom is something mysterious that goes deep into the interior of his purposes. You don’t find it lying around on the surface. It’s not the latest message, but more like the oldest—what God determined as the way to bring out his best in us, long before we ever arrived on the scene. The experts of our day haven’t a clue about what this eternal plan is. If they had, they wouldn’t have killed the Master of the God-designed life on a cross.
So that is why Jesus can say at the very end, “It is finished.” The word in Greek is tetelestai, meaning Paid in Full. You too were included in this number.
Are you automatically saved? No. Nothing that God does for man is automatic. You, the individual, must respond to God at every level of grace. Your life changes when you have a heart change and accept His free gift of eternal life. Today is the day of salvation.
#religion #spirituality #tetelestai #itisfinished
He added, “or make sure we’re looking at the log in our eye before we are pointing out the mote in other folks eyes.”
The proverb he meant to quote is “people who live in glass houses should not throw stones” a warning against hypocrisy, a big word for being a phony. As usual when politicians quote a book about which they know little or nothing they do indeed look like phonies.
The word glass appears only twice in the Old Testament but it refers to mirrors, a common household item made of polished brass and used in the wash basins of the Tabernacle where the worshiper was required to examine his own sin in a mirrored basin of water, to recognize his sin as preparation for God’s cleansing. They were also popular as ladies mirrors as well.
I checked an English version of the Koran, which Obama actually does know, and there are a few references to glass, but that book was written much later in world history.
Cal Thomas, a long-time Christian whose word on such matters can be trusted, has a short column on Bill Clinton, Al Gore and others bringing Bible quotations into politics because they perceived that Republicans have a leg up on the topic. Thomas knows his Bible in any event.
Click on this article for more info. Cal Thomas on some politicians’ Bible references
Obama has simply misapplied the verse. Hypocrisy has nothing to do with immigration policy. It is either a matter of Law or not. There are only a few times when I think we can “separate church and state” and this is one!
President Obama would be better off remembering the modern version of this proverb. “People who live in glass houses (e.g. the White House) shouldn’t get stoned.”
The key is simple: make your decision ahead if time.
Sounds impossible. How can I know how to decide before I know what is asked? Life is full of opportunities for bad decisions. You can be sure that the devil will send to you the wrong woman or the wrong man to marry. Make up your mind ahead of time that you are not going to be fooled. A potential spouse must meet some standards. Put it down on paper. Remember love can be ginned up quite falsely (called lust) or whatever. The person who thinks through a major decision will end up with a better outcome.
Make up your mind that you won’t compromise with evil before the opportunity comes to you. I was offered a pile of money and endorsements when I ran for the Legislature. I sad “no.” I was nice about it. The offer was generous. This group expected me to follow their corrupt, immoral doctrines when I was in the Legislature. I said no ahead of time. I did not win the election but I was nobody’s “yes” woman either. The only lobby you have to answer to is the God Lobby; God is more than competent to tell you how to vote.
If you know ahead of time what you believe and why decisions are easier (more…)
In 50 years we’ve gone from 3 major TV stations, daily newspapers, radio and a handful of big city newspapers to a billion-voice internet media which has now completely subsumed the former media empire. Today every voice must compete with a dizzying number of TV channels, the decline of national and local newspapers and a multi-billion blogisphere, web and tweet-world. The entire information age is upside down.
Truth used to be on the top
At the bottom level are blogs; WordPress had 65 million of them in 2015 and now 78 million, combined with web sites, and other platforms, not to mention the forbidden Chinese blog world. The real news is at this level, and I suspect the really creative world as well. On top of that still remains the school systems, hopelessly behind in both practice and effectiveness. It is top-down bureaucratized, while the blog world enjoys complete freedom of expression. On top of that are books and trendy magazines.
Truth is now on the bottom
We can ignore the celebrity stuff, and as influential as they are, the home, garden and food sites. On top of that we have a handful of TV stations who find they cannot compete with anything lower, and often unable even to compete with each other. Like the famous pyramid on the dollar, the top of the pile, New York Times, CBS, ABC etc, have an eye now blinded. The Grey Lady (NY Times) in fact does no long deal with black and white. All issues are grey (as the circulation figures show, as do the Nielsen ratings for TV) that no one much is watching or listening or reading them anymore.
Major newspapers now owned by individuals or businesses
The New York Times was once called the newspaper of record. It is so slanted now that the Wall Street Journal is considered much more reliable as well as the Washington Post and the Washington Times. Politicians are hampered by the public ignorance of even basic facts about the modern world, while scandals and speculation pose as news. It is now an insult to be called a journalist even though some are fighting back.
The Balkanization of information is actually a blessing. Major media voices have lost public trust as indicated by the Nielsen ratings of TV shows. Check out TV by the Numbers.
The only invention we now need is the ability to watch internet programming on our wide screen TVs. Pricey cable should be dead. Of course we will be confused. Everyone will have a different version of “the facts” and the major voices telling us what to believe will be quieted.
But I see this as progress. Dictatorial leaders will not be able to control the media, which is one thing all dictators try to do, and the voice of the people can be better heard. And so can the voice of God.
#lyingpress #TVbythenumbers #lossofpublictrust #religion #spirituality