When the Lord is Your Shepherd

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“The Lord is my shepherd.”

In order for the Lord to be a Shepherd who will lead us and care for us, we must first know Him as the Lord of our life. The term Lord in this context is master or ruler. Until Jesus becomes the Lord of our life, He will not be able to lead us to the places of blessing He desires to take us. Step one is surrender ourselves to Him and submit to His authority over every part of our life. Continue reading “When the Lord is Your Shepherd”

The Importance of Forgiveness and Resolving Conflict in Jesus Church

disunity-in-jesus-churchThe issue of forgiveness is one that few people want to be reminded of. This is, of course, unless they have been offended by someone else. When someone offends us, we expect them to come to us quickly and admit their mistake, seeking our forgiveness. When It is we who are the offender, very few of us will seek to apologize or admit that we are at fault. Jesus was very specific on this matter and quite serious in the manner in which we should resolve ALL conflicts that we have with another believer. He said that if we are unwilling to forgive and forget, then He will not forgive our sins.

Matthew chapter 18, is the quintessential guide on how to resolve all conflicts within Jesus church. May we all read this carefully and follow everything that our Lord has instructed us to do… Continue reading “The Importance of Forgiveness and Resolving Conflict in Jesus Church”

Change Your Life

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Many people live out their lives without the realization that our entire purpose for being here on the earth, is to be saved. We were not born to achieve financial, material, or public success; we were born so that we might have the opportunity to have our sins removed and gain access to eternal life. Just as Jesus’ entire purpose for coming to the earth as a man, was to die for our sins and make eternal life possible, we also have our own purpose, necessitating Jesus’ arrival to save us.

Most people go through their life without realizing or believing that this is true. We forget that everything that we have accumulated during the time that we are here on the earth, will be left behind. One hundred years after you die, barely a sole with remember who you are. The Bible is very clear in its declaration that the only things that you and I can do, that will last forever; is what we do for and with Jesus. The universe was created for Him, and it is He who holds all things together by His great power.[1] It was by His sacrifice on the cross, and His subsequent resurrection, that He achieved the right rule and reign over the entire universe.

What we do right now, during this life, will have eternal consequences. The Bible is very specific in its declarations that only those things that we do to bring glory to Jesus by the way that we live our life, will matter in eternity.[2] If this statement sounds absurd to you and impossible to believe, then you are amongst the great majority of people in the world. I did not know these things myself until many years after I began to study the ancient Hebrew and Greek Scriptures. The universe was made for the Glory of God and we were given the great honor of glorifying Him by our lives. If we fail to understand this, or are deficient in achieving this, we will have missed the entire purpose of our existence. What is personally important about these facts, is the reality that we will also find our greatest fulfillment, when we live to bring the Lord glory and honor.

for in Him we live and move and have our being… Acts 17:28 Continue reading “Change Your Life”

Sodom and Gomorrah: The Gay Marriage and Same Sex Controversy

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Sodom and Gomorrah03What was the reason that God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah? When we examine all of the scriptures of the Bible regarding these two cites, we see a picture that helps us understand why so many people lost their lives. Genesis 18 and 19 describes the sins of those who inhabited these cities as “very grave,” necessitating fire and brimstone from heaven.[1] Jude wrote that the sin that is described in Genesis 18 was “sexual immorality,” and a people who had “gone after strange flesh.”[2] Peter described the destruction of these cities as an example of the judgment that God will inflict upon those who live sexually immoral lives.[3]

“Sodom and Gomorrah, The Gay Marriage and Same Sex Controversy,” Now Available at Amazon

When we read the story of Nineveh, this city had also reached a similar place of evil that required the judgment of God. When Jonah walked through the city and informed the inhabitants that God would destroy their city in forty days, all of the people ceased from their sins and turned to God in repentance. No destruction came to Nineveh.

JONAH SPEAKING TO THE PEOPLE OF NINEVEH:

Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!” So the people of Nineveh believed God, proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the least of them…Then God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God relented from the disaster that He had said He would bring upon them, and He did not do it. Jonah 3:1-10

What we learn from these two examples is that God does not want to destroy the lives of human beings, He wants to save us from ourselves. It is not the will of God that evil should overtake our cities and destroy the beauty and serenity that is possible when people live together in peace.

As we examine who it was that determined that the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah should be destroyed, we find that it was the pre incarnate Jesus in one of his many appearance in the Old Testament, who issued the order. As we examine the text of Genesis 17 and 18, we see that the LORD, and two angels had come to Abram and Sarai to announce that they would have a son, who would be the first in a long line of descendants that would bring the Messiah into the world. God was sending us a Savior, and this ninety-nine year old man and ninety year old woman would be the parents of the first descendant. Through this son, the entire world would be blessed. God was going to make a way that every person who has been born on the earth, could have all of their sins removed and obtain heaven as their eternal destiny.

It was while bringing this wonderful news to Abraham and Sarah, as they would later be known, that the LORD also determined to destroy two cites, whose inhabitants had digressed so far into sexual immorality that their continued existence would threaten the peace, and safety of every other city and people. This sin in Sodom and Gomorrah had existed for a very long time, with no repentance or desire to cease their immoral actions. When we examine the moments when God had determined that a nation should be destroyed for their unwillingness to turn from evil, we find that hundreds of years of forbearance were given to these nations by God. In the case of the Canaanites, God waited nearly 900 years before the order came for judgement. Continue reading “Sodom and Gomorrah: The Gay Marriage and Same Sex Controversy”

The Relationship Between the Blood Moon of September 2015 and Jesus Return

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According to NASA and experts in Astronomy, the Blood Moon that will occur in September, 2015, is nothing remarkable; this phenomenon happens quite frequently and we should not read anything supernatural into this event.

When Jesus arrived on the earth the first time, there were “Signs in the Heavens,” in the form of a planet conjunction. This phenomenon was significant enough that several astronomers from the east made a long and difficult journey to Israel. There is credible evidence that these “Wise Men,” believed that this bright “star” that had appeared, was a fulfillment of the prophecies of Isaiah and Micah, which foretold that the promised Messiah would arrive on the earth at that time.

History also records a supernatural event that took place from 12 noon to 3 pm, on the day that Jesus was dying for the sins of the world on the cross. This event is documented by secular as well as Biblical sources.

Roman historian, Tertullian, describes an account by Phlegon, that a Total Solar Eclipse had taken place during the time that Jesus was crucified at Jerusalem.

“In the same hour (as the crucifixion), too, the light of day was withdrawn, when the sun at the very time was in his meridian blaze. Those who were not aware that this had been predicted about Christ, no doubt thought it an eclipse. You yourselves have an account of the world portent still in your archives (Phlegon’s account).”[1a]

The “archives,” that Phlegon refers to, are the Annals of Rome. These are the official records of history that were meticulously kept at the Roman Senate. This is corroboration of the New Testament text that Jesus was on the cross, crucified, died, and that darkness took place at the specific time that the narrative of the New Testament writers says that it happened.[1b]

Julius Africanus also records that Roman historian, Thallus, stated that the darkness that took place during Jesus’ crucifixion could not have been caused by a solar eclipse. The feast of Passover is always observed on the 14th day of Nissan (April), during a full moon. A solar eclipse can only occur during a new moon. It is astronomically impossible for a total eclipse of the sun to occur, concurrent with a full moon. [1c] Therefore, the darkness from noon to 3pm, that is reported in the New Testament, could not have been caused by a total solar eclipse.

If the Sun was obscured and darkness fell over the entire earth for three hours, and it was not a Total Solar Eclipse, what was it? History records that it took place and science cannot explain it. The Bible simply states that God caused this event in response to the death of His Son.

On the same evening of Jesus crucifixion, historians also confirm a second event that is recorded by both the Bible and secular historians; on the evening of that same day; a Total Lunar Eclipse occurred, displaying a “Blood Moon.” This event was confirmed by Astronomer, Colin J. Humphreys by use of computer models which recreated the astronomical events that took place in 32 A.D.

Too many coincidences

Scientists will tell us that these three occurrences are simply coincidences that just happened to take place during the time of Jesus birth, and death. They say that they are perfectly natural phenomenon that can be explained by science and astronomy; We don’t need God, nor the Bible to explain what happened.

As we look at the thousands of times in the history of the world when supernatural events have taken place, there are just too many to conclude that they were all coincidences.

The following are the facts that surround the signs in the heavens that took place when Jesus arrived on the earth the first time, at His death, and are predicted to take place once again when He returns to earth. Continue reading “The Relationship Between the Blood Moon of September 2015 and Jesus Return”

The Lord is More Interested in Your Character Than Your Comfort

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The New Testament gives us a strange view of Jesus as He is praying also for all those who are driving the nails into His hands and feet and tormenting Him while He is on the cross.

Luke 23:33 And when they had come to the place called Calvary, there they crucified Him, and the criminals, one on the right hand and the other on the left. Luke 23:34 Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.”

Since Jesus death and resurrection, it has been His continuing role to pray for all those who have placed their faith in Him as their Savior.

Paul described Jesus as our High Priest, who ever lives to make intercession for us. Jesus’ continuing ministry since His resurrection is to pray and intercede for those who have come to Him for salvation. A knowledge of these truths should be a great source of comfort, knowing that at this moment, Jesus is in heaven praying for each one of us.

Whatever it is that you may be going through in your life right now, Jesus is aware of your situation, and He is praying for you. If you are suffering and wondering why the Lord has not rescued you from your trouble, have you considered that He is praying for you?

It is a truth that is often displayed throughout the Bible, that the Lord is more interested in our character than our comfort. Just as any loving father will make the life of his child difficult sometimes to teach important principles and develop character, so also does our Father in heaven. God allows suffering in the lives of those who have come into a personal relationship with Him by Jesus Christ, for good intentions. Continue reading “The Lord is More Interested in Your Character Than Your Comfort”

Who God Has Chosen For Salvation: Everyone

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There are certain occasions in our life when it seems that there is no solution to our problems. We should remember that the Lord always has a plan and a way to solve every difficulty.

In the minds of the leaders of Israel, salvation through the Messiah was for the Jew, not for the Gentile. In their view, the Gentile nations were far from God and could never be brought near. To consider that the Gentiles would carry the message of the Messiah’s salvation to the entire world was in their minds—an impossibility.

Very often, what we consider impossible is really very easy for God. Those people whom we might think have no possibility of salvation are the very ones whom God pours out His Spirit upon and saves.

This should be a great lesson for us. When we think that we have figured out what God is going to do, often the Lord has a way that we would never have considered. He has resources that we have no knowledge of. His ways are not our ways. His power to accomplish all of the promises which He has made are limitless.

Isaiah 55:8-9“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD. 9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.

Before the Lord offered Israel salvation and the opportunity to be a light to the Gentile nations of the world, He knew that the Jews would reject His Son when He came to earth. It was His plan all along to offer salvation to every person born on the earth. In order to provoke Israel to jealousy, the Lord saved the Gentile nations of the world who turned to Him for salvation. Ultimately, it will be this massive move of God through all the Gentile nations which will turn the eyes and the hearts of Israel back to the Lord, to receive Jesus as Lord and Savior in the last days. Continue reading “Who God Has Chosen For Salvation: Everyone”

God Will Have the Last Word in Our Lives

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Revelation 1:17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last.

Today, the term I am the first and the last, has lost its original meaning. At the time that John penned these words in the Book of Revelation, anyone hearing this term spoken by an individual, understood that they were claiming to be the eternal God.

Isaiah 44:6 “Thus says the LORD, the King of Israel, And his Redeemer, the LORD of hosts: ‘I am the First and I am the Last; Besides Me there is no God.’ ” Continue reading “God Will Have the Last Word in Our Lives”

How Peter Knew the Birth of Jesus Church Was a Fulfillment of Prophecy

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It was on the 50th day after Jesus was offered as the Passover Lamb that Pentecost was celebrated. Jesus waited until this specific time to pour out the Holy Spirit on His Church. It was this amazing power which came upon every person who had professed their faith in Jesus as their Messiah, which gave each believer the ability to live the life that Jesus had called them to.

Acts 1:5 “for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

Acts 1:8 “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you…”

The mark of one who is truly saved is the Holy Spirit living within. Without the Holy Spirit, there is no salvation, there is no power, no spiritual life, no eternal life.

Romans 8:9 But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.

The Holy Spirit enables us to do things which are otherwise impossible for us to achieve. We can boldly stand before people and tell them about the wonderful things which Jesus has done in our life and have that message empowered by the Holy Spirit. When the Spirit is behind the words and actions of our life, what we say and do has amazing results in the lives of the people whom we come in contact with. Continue reading “How Peter Knew the Birth of Jesus Church Was a Fulfillment of Prophecy”

Following Jesus is No Burden

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Feeling overwhelmed by life? Tired of the demands of religion? Burdened by your own failures and inadequacies?

Jesus came to lighten your burdens and take away the useless and irrelevant parts of life. God has made knowing Him and having a relationship with Him–very simple. It is we who heap upon ourselves and others, great demands and priorities which God never intended. When we allow these things to crowd out a simple and joyful relationship with the Lord–we are robbed of our joy and lose sight of what is really important. Continue reading “Following Jesus is No Burden”