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Forget Not the Gospel

At the bottom of this post, you will find some of the Bible, not a verse or a paragraph but a whole chapter. I put the whole chapter because isolating scripture causes it to be taken out of context, so no matter who (myself included) quotes or explains the Bible, you should ALWAYS read it for yourself. 

The church has become very self-centered these days. Everything that is taught, preached, or presented in the mainstream seems to be about the church, not the people but church people. You can call them the body and edify them and they too will proclaim that that’s indeed who they are, but they have grown fat and kicked (Deuteronomy 32:15) and become all about themselves. The church today is a series of “It’s All About Me” sermons. Think about it, everything taught is built on motivational speaking. No one is really being the hands and feet, but we’re all claiming to be. There are tons of conferences where people come together to express their ideas and they go to great lengths for an opulent setting but those same people won’t go out and preach the gospel. Who are we if we preach to the ones sitting in the pews, but nothing is said to the homeless man standing on the corner or the homeless woman living on the streets?

No one is really living out the Gospel. Everyone is using the Gospel to show who they see themselves as, but going to church, having a mission statement, guest speakers or conferences isn’t really reaching the needy of this world… It isn’t really preparing them for the kingdom of God. There is so much preaching of a better life through self-centered edification that we have forgotten the needy other than a show of what we’re doing through selfies there’s no real sincere outreach.

Everyone is waiting on the next “Christian” guest speaker who looks like they have it all together to tell them how to do “it” (it being life) and do it well, the problem with that is that it creates a co-dependency on man, for evaluation and validation. The world is constantly looking to man for where to go next, when in reality God has already given us that in The Bible, He left an instruction manual that many neglect because they would rather have the pastor give them a verse here or there to quote, but a single verse or a series built on the guise of a few scriptures can never truly encompass the full word of God.

Today, instead of looking in the Bible people are looking to others to tell them what the Bible means and what it says about every situation that plagues them. The new move of self-centeredness takes the cares and worries of self and puts them above others. Take your mind off of yourself and put it on His people. The true hands and feet of Jesus are still lost, still waiting, but nobody’s approaching them because we’re all sitting in the pew. No one wants to leave the pew because they are used to the comfort of cliches shouted to them like, “This is your year for a breakthrough!” or “God is going to turn everything around for your good!”. It’s like getting fed junk food or sugar in place of sincere milk (1 Peter 2:2).

The problem is not favor, breakthrough, or an encouraging word, the problem is that once we receive these things, they seem never to be enough and more and more, people are starting to rely on man rather than God for confidence, peace, strategy, and for revelation when true revelation comes from spending time in God’s word and in His presence. The problem with this is that people become co-dependant on man’s word, validation, and justification rather than on God’s.

If God desires to use you or bless you, it’s not so you can so you can store up your blessings in a barn and guard it with your life (Luke 12:16-21), it’s so you can reach out to His people, speak His word, show His love, lay hands on the sick, and encourage the lost. (“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” Luke 4:18-19 https://www.bible.com/1/LUK.4.18-19)

Don’t get so comfortable with the cliches of man that you forget that only God can be God. Don’t neglect His word and don’t be led astray by everything that sounds good (See Ephesians 4:14). Don’t get so comfortable that you forget to go out and reach a dying nation.

1In the mean time, when there were gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, insomuch that they trode one upon another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.
2 For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known.
3 Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.
4 And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.
5 But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.
6 Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God?
7 But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.
8 Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God:
9 But he that denieth me before men shall be denied before the angels of God.
10 And whosoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but unto him that blasphemeth against the Holy Ghost it shall not be forgiven.
11 And when they bring you unto the synagogues, and unto magistrates, and powers, take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say:
12 For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.
13And one of the company said unto him, Master, speak to my brother, that he divide the inheritance with me.
14And he said unto him, Man, who made me a judge or a divider over you?
15And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.
16And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:
17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?
18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.
19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.
20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?
21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.
22And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.
23 The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.
24 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls?
25 And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit?
26 If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest?
27 Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
28 If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith?
29 And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind.
30 For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.
31 But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.
32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.
33 Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth.
34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
35 Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning;
36 And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately.
37 Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them.
38 And if he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants.
39 And this know, that if the goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through.
40 Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not.
41Then Peter said unto him, Lord, speakest thou this parable unto us, or even to all?
42And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season?
43 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
44 Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath.
45 But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken;
46 The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.
47 And that servant, which knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.
48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.
49 I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?
50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!
51 Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division:
52 For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three.
53 The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
54And he said also to the people, When ye see a cloud rise out of the west, straightway ye say, There cometh a shower; and so it is.
55 And when ye see the south wind blow, ye say, There will be heat; and it cometh to pass.
56 Ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky and of the earth; but how is it that ye do not discern this time?
57 Yea, and why even of yourselves judge ye not what is right?
58 When thou goest with thine adversary to the magistrate, as thou art in the way, give diligence that thou mayest be delivered from him; lest he hale thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and the officer cast thee into prison.
59 I tell thee, thou shalt not depart thence, till thou hast paid the very last mite. Luke 12:1-59 KJV  To read more go to https://www.bible.com/bible/1/LUK.12.kjv

 

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God Fulfills His Promises

Note to self: Remember this truth.

Pure Glory

by Hazel Straub

imagesYou can always trust that if God gave you a promise, he will fulfill it. It does not matter how insurmountable the odds against you seem, if God has assured you that it will happen, it will. Think on these promises and rehearse them, with anticipation.  Confidently, rest in Yahweh, as you wait!

This is what the Sovereign Yahweh, the Holy One of Israel, says: “Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved. In quietness and confidence is your strength. But you would have none of it. (Isaiah 30:15 NLT)

© Crown of Glory International Ministries. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission, from this blog’s author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Crown of Glory International Ministries, with specific direction to the…

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Faith Move Leap!, Simple Truths, Transparency

Victorious! the Mind of Christ

It is easy to get back to God if you just pray and turn everything over to Him. It may not seem easy but just start with something that’s bothering you. Something that you would normally tell everyone else, something you’d normally obsess over, something that would discourage you or cause fear, something that would bring feelings of inadequacy; take it to God, tell it to God. Normally we over think these situations and wonder why they happened to us. In an attempt to understand our hurt, we obsess and talk about it to ourselves. We replay the situation in our heads with “what if’s” and “I should have said’s”.

If you have a pure or genuine heart toward God and those around you, chances are you’ve felt crushed but held your tongue and tried to let it go only to get home and have it all ( a snub by a coworker, a snide comment by an acquaintance, or rudeness and rejection by those close to you, being embarrassed) come back to you and sit front and center in your thoughts.

In an attempt to nullify these feelings and thoughts of regrets, we talk it out with several people, hoping they’ll make us feel better about the situation. But truthfully the only time we really feel better is when we truly turn it over to God. This is more than just saying “I give it to God”, this is sincere, open prayer to God about what and why “it” hurt us… “it” being the situation or person that caused the regret. Once you open up and give it to God you will be able to move on without regrets. You will be able to rest assured in your response, even if it was no response at all. You will know that the Lord will fight for you and that you need only be still (Exodus 14:14). Rest assured that when you glorify the Lord with your response, even when it is no response at all, you are not being weak, you are being His! When any of these things happen, know that you are not defeated, you are victorious because you have given everything, all of your fears, doubts, and worries to Christ, and He has victory over EVERYTHING, even death! We are victorious, we have the mind of Christ!

Confessions, Simple Truths

Hiding

Can I just say that I haven’t been listening? I haven’t been listening. I know my Father’s voice, but I haven’t been listening the way that I should. I haven’t been drowning out distractions the way should. The first thing I used to do was get up and read or and pray. I don’t mean that to sound cliche, but I really, really used to do that and I lived for it. Spending time with God, in His presence, with His Spirit was the highlight of my day.

There was a time where it was common to find me, face to the carpet, in worship at any time of the day. I would be home in my prayer room just in awe of Him, being filled with Him so much so that it caused an ache to be filled even more… I wonder if we even have that capacity. I mean even though I ached to be even more filled with Him, I wonder if my heart and spirit even have the capacity to just overflow with Him so much that there’s nothing of me left but the vessel… No personal will, no self-serving cares. Can you imagine?

But that was then and this is now. Then I still watched television, even Netflix. Then I still took daily calls from my best friend, but none of it outweighed the voice of God. I’d hear Him call to me and I’d listen, just the smallest stir and I’d be waiting. I was not afraid to feel because I knew He’d comfort me and I trusted Him with my whole heart! Today I still hear Him but I haven’t been listening, I still feel the unpleasant sting of reality, but I’ve hidden those feelings away. Sometimes I feel as if I’m trying to drown everything out with distractions instead of giving them to God… I keep wondering; when did I become so afraid of the thing I want most? Intimacy with God.

Honestly, there are so many things around me that have brought hurt and I’ve really just wanted to shut it all out. Rather it’s food, TV, or any other source of distractions, I find that I’m always trying to feed on something that doesn’t truly fill me. When I look at that I know that I’m not deserving but that He deemed enough for His call, enough for His love.

I feel Him calling me, stirring in me the promises of old. I’m so glad that He’s faithful.  I’ve been afraid and I’ve hidden from my first love they things only He can fix. But He is a faithful God. I’m so glad that He is not a man that He should lie, nor the son of man that He should repent. I’m also glad that God never leaves us, nor forsakes us and that His mercy endureth forever, for without these things, where would I be?

God has shown me things, and even through my lack of diligence I’m glad of this: “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?” Numbers 23:19

So Father I just thank You for all of Your goodness, and mercy. I thank You for Your redeeming strength, the truth of Your Word and the power of prayer. I ask forgiveness for the times I’ve run from You, the times You called and I didn’t answer. I repent Father, I turn away from those things, and those ways and I lay them at Your feet. In Jesus’ Name, I pray, Amen.