You Just Got Served

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...The Son of Man did not come to be served, BUT TO SERVE..." (Mark 10:45)

   Have you ever laid it all on the line? Can you remember what it felt like, how it tasted? That one championship game you played in years back perhaps? Or maybe when you confessed your dark secret to your lover that one time? Or maybe you stood up for what you believed in before a room of opposition, even though you were scared of what people might think of you later? For some this is the peak of human experience the last time they really felt "alive".

      Whatever your expirence was I know it wasn't being  scourged, humiliated and crucified by people who hate you and would do far worse to you if they had the permission and power to do so. And they did this, not for anything you did, but for you just being, "you". (Not very politically correct if you ask me) Jesus, in the performance of a lifetime, before the audience of God and man, practically stood on his head to serve you. He did absolutely everything in order to justify you before God, paving the way to your salvation with his blood, sweat and tears. 

       If you could rate yourself (turning that highly trained muscle of critique you love using on everybody and everything on yourself for a moment) could you honestly say you have given your all in life today? Why not? (Think about it don't just read it like a bystander to your own life)

        Well for those who answered, "no..." Your problem lies in trust and faith in who God is, and you need to be encouraged. And rediscover who YOU are! If you answered, "Yes!" Then the question is, what have you given your all to today? Was it to build and manipulate your life and others to make your life better, or more comfortable. Or maybe to put a couple more bucks in the 'ol checking account? Or maybe you have to give your all because if you don't God will be mad at you. Well your problem also lies in trust and faith in who God is, and you too need encouraging.

       If you read your Bible and try to memorize scripture, if you go to church and tithe, if you tell people about Jesus and listen to Christian radio does that make you a Christian? It is said, "if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck." But then how is it written, "On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name? And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.'"(Matthew 7:22-23) 

          Be encouraged your life depends on how Jesus Christ performed and not on what you have done or ever will do! He is the only one who had the talent and worth to make laying it all on the line (paying for your sins with His life) have any validity or any power in your life. The only thing that makes a Christian a Christian is a living relationship with the person Jesus. Does God live in you? This is the only distinguishing factor and it is an inside thing not an outside thing. But the one who God is in will have outward characteristics that testify to that fact.

         If you want a Spirit filled life, your life must be filled with the Spirit! Not just once but continually, over and over. A constant filling. But this only comes by believing there is really a person named Jesus, who really is God, who really did become a man, who really did resist sinning until the moment he had to bare all your sins and the wrath of God being nailed to a roman cross, who really did die, who really was resurrected bodily from death, who then ascended bodily into Heaven to sit at the right hand of the Father and who really sent God the Holy Spirit to abide in you. If you believe this, the Holy Spirit is in you! But, "Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit's leading in every part of our lives." (Galatians 5:25 NLT) If this doesn't apply to you then right now stop everything you are doing and pray to God with sincere humility and ask Him to fill you with his Spirit even now and BELIEVE! Thank God for doing what you asked and enjoy Him! (Did you do it?) Expel doubt and live in the newness of life! "At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now! This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; A NEW LIFE HAS BEGUN! (2 Cor. 5:16-17) Fully free in Christ and fully accountable before God in truth. Do this as often as you need to through the day (which will be often) and you will not need anyone to tell you about God for He Himself will be with you and showing you everything and you will know what it means when people say, "a relationship with Jesus." Or ,"Walk in the Spirit." It is a plane of existence that can not be accessed by anything but faith in Jesus Christ. If you do not know what I'm talking about ask God for this life. If you know this life my prayer for you is that you remain steadfast in it! This is the work of God! Repent and believe!

 

   So God writes to you who are conceived in confusion, "It is not by force nor by strength, but by my Spirit." 

          The tree does not strain and strive to produce it's fruit neither do you will your blood to flow through your veins, so it is with the Spirit filled life it is not something sustained by your effort or will. It is sustained by grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus. "This is the only work God wants from you: Believe in the one he has sent."(John 6:29) I pray you are experiencing this miracle in your life, if your not then know that this plane of existence is a reality and is alive and we all have access to this Spirtual life for it is ours in Christ.   

           “Awake, O sleeper, rise up from the dead, and Christ will give you light.” (Ephesians 5:14) 

Civil Religion: The stumbling stone of the modern church

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              Not too long into setting out across America to pursue preaching the goodnews of the Kingdom of God and helping those in need, I was confronted with what I thought at the time was close to blasphemy. A teaching that was so contrary to my understanding of Scripture particularly in regard to eschatology that I was actually upset because the person informing me of this had just graduated from seminary! 

Graduating from Bible college from a non-denominational discipline taught me much of God and His Christ and why the church was so important, but it also taught me many things that I had to receive by faith like my salvation and the gift of the Holy Spirit and the Rapture of the saints before the antichrist should be revealed and Daniels 70th week be finally realized.  

This will not be a post trying to convince you of anything but, what I have seen and what has been revealed to me so far through the word of God I can not deny. As I took on the heavy task of examining what and why I believe what I do about what Scripture teaches about the second coming of the Messiah Jesus, the less I saw anything really describing a "secret taking away" of the righteous toward God. I also could find no answer of why the 70th week of Daniel(or often referred to as the "time of Jacob's trouble") was Severed from the 69 weeks in the first place and made into some prophetic 7 year period that has yet be fulfilled! Not to mention that the rapture theology fundemtaly teaches that there is 2 comings of Christ, one to rapture the saints and one were he comes to kill everyone who doesn't believe and establish His Kingdom on Earth. The Bible however does not know this teaching and is firm that Jesus is the one who was and is and is to come, the Alpha and Omega. More specifically, the Lamb who was slain sit's on the Throne of God's Power with a sword that comes from his mouth not his hand!

But in a radical turn of events the dispensational theology(created in the 19th century) confessing itself to be the "rightly divided word", had many times with its precision and understanding predicted with great conviction of heart, the the rapture of the church. Most notably you will remember the late Chuck Smith who predicted the rapture would take place in 1981, 40 years(a generation) from the re-institution of Israel in 1948. Dispensationlists have been changing the dates even into our modern times to fit their respected timelines. Figuratively trying to bend what is happening in the news with what the Bible says creating a hybrid-Frankenstein theology that is yet to be made alive.

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In America, Civil Religion is second nature. For as children we were taught to pledge our alligence to America. Hearing the tales of the forefathers like George Washington who famously never told a lie. To the rituals instituted every year like Thanksgiving and the 4rth of July which you will gladly participate in. But here is where things will start to get uncomfortable. it is common knowledge to say, "God bless America!" Or even, "God bless our troops!" Are we asking the God of the Bible to somehow favor our young people in killing another countries young people? Or preferring the people of this continent over another? Yet the Bible portrays the saints in heaven as from every tribe and every tongue worshipping God with zero nationalism for there respected country as they are citizens of Heaven. If you are to ask any American today they would tell you infaticly that freedom ISN'T FREE, and that if it weren't for the brave men and woman serving in our military we would not have the freedom we take for granted today. But does our freedom come from soldiers fighting for us oversees or the Son of God who ransomed us to God with His death on the cross 2000 years ago? 

My point here is simple, is it possible that our failure to read Revelation the way it was intended caused us to fall into idle worship of the mighty earthly system of Babylon the great? Can a brand new revelation from the 19th century be the correct interpretation when the last 1800 years of the church history did not know or teach dispensationalism?  In the famous last words of 1 John, "Little children, keep yourselves from idles!"