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Monday, March 31, 2008

Never Give Up

By Denny Smith

When we learn the truth of the gospel message, come to believe it, and then sincerely obey it we sometimes expect more of ourselves than is humanly possible for us to deliver. When we first come out of the water of our baptism we are determined that we will not sin, we are going to live sin free. This attitude is to be highly commended but is also unrealistic.

Many who obey the gospel do so when young and thus their own expectations about life are not in accord with reality. They have little idea of what it will be like to live as an adult in the real world with the pressures that daily face people. When they are confronted with them, are no longer sheltered but must face them head on, they begin to stumble here and there on occasion. Discouragement settles in for the one who was sincere in his or her gospel obedience.

The thinking becomes I have sinned, and then I did it again either in the same way or another way, and then again, and the first thing you know it seems like you are trapped in a body that not only insists on sinning but has power over one's own will. We become discouraged and cease feeling good about ourselves. We think I am not good enough; I cannot live the Christian life; I am just not a strong enough person.

The truth is that almost all of us at one point in time or another have felt that way, often over extended periods of time. What do we do when that happens? Too many just gradually give in to those kinds of feelings and give up. But, is the situation hopeless? Does it have to be that way? I would like to take a look into the lives of some of God's people who seemingly had the same problems I speak of here and see what they did that was sinful, what led them to do it, and how they handled it in the hope that it will help all of us.

There is no doubt that Moses was a great man of God. He spoke with Christ on the Mount of Transfiguration prior to Christ's suffering. The Hebrew writer says of Moses, "And Moses indeed was faithful in all His house as a servant." (Heb. 3:5 NKJV) Yet, we know God would not allow Moses to enter the promised land because of his own sin. What was that sin?

While the children of Israel were traveling through the wilderness after having come out of the land of Egypt they came to a place later called Massah and Meribah, a place where there was no water and a place in which the people grew thirsty and began to complain to Moses. Moses went to God concerning the matter and God directed him to go to the rock there and speak to the rock and strike it with his rod and water would come forth. Moses did this but failed to give God the glory instead saying before striking the rock "must we bring water for you out of this rock?" We infer from this that he was speaking of himself and his brother Aaron who was with him. God was left out of the picture and not given the glory. For this Moses was not allowed to enter the promised land. (See the accounts of this in Exodus 17:1-7, Numbers 20:2-13, Numbers 20:24, Numbers 27:12-14, and Deut. 32:48-52.)

Moses was such a great man of God that God spoke to him face to face. "So the Lord spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend," is what the Bible says in Exodus 33:11 (NKJV) (see also Num. 12:8 and Deut. 34:10). Please note that this is said of Moses 16 chapters after the events concerning the water at the rock, after Moses' sin. So, what was it that would cause such a great man of God to sin in this way?

The answer is the very same thing that gets to us as Christians today - pressure on the job, stress in our life. Moses in Exodus 17:2 says to the people who were complaining, "Why do you contend with me?" The very next verse, verse 3, says, "the people complained against Moses", and it gets so bad that in verse 4 Moses says to God, "What shall I do with this people? They are almost ready to stone me!" That is pressure on the job. When Moses says they are almost ready to stone me we should not think that he is speaking figuratively but stoning was a real possibility if things did not soon get better.

The Psalmist says with regards to this event, (Psalms 106:32-33 ESV), "They angered him (God - DS) at the waters of Meribah, and it went ill with Moses on their account, for they made his spirit bitter, and he spoke rashly with his lips." Moses grew angry and bitter at the people and spoke rashly out of passion rather than calmly with forethought and failed to give God the glory. When we speak in the heat of passion there is seldom any good that can come out of it.

I have used Moses as an example for us today for how often it is that Christians find themselves in very high stress situations, under all kinds of pressure, and the result is that we too end up like Moses and sin under the stress. What kinds of sin? A whole host of sins could be mentioned, here are a few. We begin to put God on the back burner and give him second place in our lives feeling that there is just not enough time to do everything. Attendance at worship services begin to lag, Bible reading ceases, prayer time diminishes, there is no time for good works, we begin doing whatever it is that is required of us to stay in good standing in our job even if it means sacrificing our Christian life. It is easy to eventually end up as a Christian drop out.

This can happen and it does happen all of the time. The more professional your job, the more responsibility you have, the more of an executive position you hold the tougher it becomes. Expectations are so great and the kinds of people we often work with are far from having Christian character, just the opposite, and it makes it very difficult to survive as a Christian. With all the attempts to get the most out of the least it seems about everyone is under pressure on the job no matter what position they hold - blue collar or white collar.

I want to say there are no easy answers to these kinds of situations that we find ourselves in. I heard one preacher say words to the effect that we can quit. Yes, and then what? Will the next job be any better? This is America 2007 and soon to be 2008. If there are any stress free jobs in our country today I do not know where or what they are. We cannot herd sheep. What can we do then?

We can hang in there. We can fight the battle as best we can. We can pray to God for help. We can do our best. We can trust God's grace. We can follow Moses example and not give up. When God told him of his sin and told him he would not be allowed into the promised land he could have given up. He could have said I have the toughest job in the world leading these people that are continually giving me a hard time and they are bringing me down with them and I quit, I give up. Despite my best efforts I cannot live faithfully and please God.

Had Moses done this what then? Where would he be today? Would he have met with Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration? Would he have been called a faithful man in the book of Hebrews as is the case? What did Moses do?

He did not quit. He accepted his sin for what it was and went on with life. He continued to trust in God as his hope and salvation. This is exactly what we need to do today. Remember Moses when things get tough in your life and follow his example.

Another man I would like to deal with is David. You know the story of David, a man the Bible says was a man after God's own heart (1 Sam. 13:14). And yet, as great a man of God as David was, his sin with Bathsheba is perhaps the best known case of adultery that ever occurred. And, one can add murder to his list of sins for having Bathsheba's husband, Uriah, killed. The account of this affair can be found in 2 Samuel 11 and 12.

David was a man who had always done God's will. If he had lived in the Christian era we would say there is a man who is so strong in the faith that it is impossible for me to live up to the example he sets. We might well say of him, if he lived near us, that he is the best Christian man I have ever met. Of course, David was not a Christian as he lived under the law of Moses but I say this to emphasize what a man of God he truly was, a super role model.

Yet, he fell mightily. He lusted with his eyes and heart after Bathsheba and then had her husband Uriah killed to cover his tracks and hide his sin when he discovered Bathsheba was with child, his child. All this sin began when because of outside stimulus his heart ceased to be pure.

Yet, despite his sin, as horrible as it was, the Bible speaks highly of him. Here is what it says in comments that are being made about Abijam, a king that came later down the road after David. 1 Kings 15:3-5 (NKJV), "His heart was not loyal to the Lord his God, as was the heart of his father David. Nevertheless for David's sake the Lord his God gave him a lamp in Jerusalem, by setting up his son after him and by establishing Jerusalem; because David did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, and had not turned aside from anything that He commanded him all the days of his life, except in the matter of Uriah the Hittite."

When David's life on earth ended he was found in God's favor. The words I just quoted above were after David's death.

What can we learn from what happened to David? I start with this. Don't be deceived, there is no one no matter how spiritual they may appear and may even actually be, who is not capable of sin, even grievous sin. We sometimes tend to think others are strong and not tempted like me. Don't be overly sure of that. No one is struggling like me. Don't be sure of that. No one has to fight temptation like me. Don't be sure of that. It is said that David was around 50 years old at the time of this sin. It is not just the young who struggle to be faithful.

Secondly, David's sin was to begin with the result of factors external to himself. He saw, he was tempted, he lusted. How many of our own sins begin with factors external to ourselves. We see this or that, we hear this or that, it creates desire within our heart, and we give in to temptation. We may not see a naked lady bathing but everyday we are exposed to things from the outside that cause lust in our hearts whether it be sexual lust, as was the case with David, or the desire for possessions, or the desire to have position and authority and be praised and honored as we see other men and women being praised and honored, or maybe just the desire to fit in and be accepted as one of the guys. What we see and hear has an affect upon us all.

It is a battle all of us fight. Paul said in 1 Cor. 10:13 (NKJV), "No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man" which tells us to not kid ourselves. We are not alone in being tempted by the things of this world. But, Paul goes on and says, "God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it."

But, you may be saying to yourself as you examine your own life that I failed. I did not take the way of escape. Well, you have joined vast multitudes of God's own people that would have to confess the same thing at various points in their lives including David, the great man of God. The point is that it is not hopeless.

We all believe we are going to see David in heaven. Why? Because he repented and he did not give up. It would be easy for a man who has committed adultery and murder to go into the depths of despair so deep as to never come out again. Imagine the shame, the self loathing, the inability to look at one's self in the mirror, the eternal regret and sorrow.

What is the lesson? Never give up, there is always good reason for hope. God will forgive you no matter how atrocious your sins may be. The bible says he is not willing that any should perish but that all come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9). Jesus did not come to earth to die on the cross just so men could die in sin. I remind the reader that both Moses and David were men of God at the time of their sins. God forgave them. He will forgive you and me if we repent and do not give up. Nothing most people have done will compare with what David did. You have never murdered have you? God forgave him. God will forgive you.

The 51st Psalm was written by David the result of this sin he had committed and after Nathan had confronted him and David had repented. First, he asks for forgiveness and acknowledges his transgressions but then he says in verse 10, "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me." Do you think God was capable of doing that with David? Do you think he is capable of doing that with you or me when we get caught up in sin? Remember David is speaking or writing but doing so by inspiration of the Holy Spirit who led him to utter these words. God is able and willing if we like David will repent.

Then note verses 16 and 17 where David says, "For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart - These, O God, You will not despise." (Psalm 51:16-17 NKJV) When a man or woman truly from the depths of their heart repents God will forgive them and we are talking here about the children of God. Remember how the father received back the prodigal son in the New Testament? The message is God wants us back.

In closing I want to touch on a few passages in the New Testament. The church at Corinth was full of sinning Christians. The book of 1st Corinthians was written for the purpose of getting the brethren to repent. Just about every sin you can think of was going on in the church there. This included even a man who had his father's wife sexually.

Paul wrote the brethren back some what later giving us the book of 2nd Corinthians. In that book he makes it clear that even this man was forgiven as he had repented. He says to the brethren, "you ought rather to forgive and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one be swallowed up with too much sorrow. Therefore I urge you to reaffirm your love to him." (2 Cor. 2:7-8 NKJV)

In 2 Cor. 2:10-11 Paul says concerning this man and this situation, "Now whom you forgive anything, I also forgive. For if indeed I have forgiven anything, I have forgiven that one for your sakes in the presence of Christ, lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devises."

Barnes in his commentary on this passage says, "And the idea is, that they should at once re-admit the penitent offender to their communion, lest if they did not do it, Satan would take advantage of it to do injury to him and them. It is a reason given by Paul why they should lose no time in restoring him to the church."

Concerning the sins of the brethren at Corinth besides this man's sin Paul says in 2 Cor. 7:9-10 (NKJV), "Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing. For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death."

Remember we are talking to and about Christians here. Their repentance led to their salvation. They suffered loss in nothing for they repented and God received them again.

Still there were some at Corinth that had not repented in contrast to those who had. Paul writes in 2 Cor. 12:21 that he fears when he comes to them again that there will be some that "have not repented of the uncleanness, fornication, and lewdness which they have practiced." (NKJV) Yes, Christians can become involved in anything as did David but if we will repent God will forgive. Paul's lament here is that they have not repented.

The very last passage I want to touch on is found in Hebrews 10:35-36. It seems the brethren were growing weary and about to give up and drift away. They are admonished, "Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise." (NKJV)

The message - don't give up. No matter how weak you may be at times, no matter how many sins you may commit as a Christian, no matter how bad they may be don't give up. It is never hopeless until we give up. We are all in the same boat together. John says, "If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us." (1 John 1:8 NKJV) Sin hits us all even as Christians. The other guy may just do a better job hiding his. Quitters never win and never can. Only when we quit is it over. Jesus came into the world to save us, not condemn us. Let us do as David did, repent, and then get up and get going again. You have the road of salvation to travel so get up and get going again.

Your author is a Christian man who has himself fallen short but has been encouraged to go on and not give up based on what God's word teaches. For more articles on the Christian life see http://studiesinthelordssupper.com/Unrelated_Subjects.htm

For gospel audio preaching see http://studiesinthelordssupper.com/Waymon_Swain_s_Audio_Sermons.htm

The Gospel of the Kingdom

By Peter D. Scott

Gospel - Good news and glad tidings.

The Gospel of Jesus Christ - To talk about Jesus and all of his works, to tell people about Jesus Christ.

The Gospel of Jesus Christ - The Gospel that Jesus preached, and taught which was the Gospel of the Kingdom of God. For example: In the new testament you have four (4) Gospels. The Gospel according to Matthew, The Gospel according to Mark, The Gospel according to Luke, and the Gospel according to John. They all had their Gospels to tell about Jesus. And Jesus had his Gospel to tell about the Kingdom of God.

First I would like to ask what was Jesus message? What did Jesus preach? Many may say well, salvation of course and repentance. True, but thats just a part of what Jesus preached and taught. What was his main message? Before I go any further I would like to say you must be open and receptive to new revelation and miracles. The pharisees also with the Saducees were not open and receptive to the new revelation and miracles that Jesus did. But instead, they tempted him, mocked him, and wanted to stone him for the TRUTH. Why? Because they were stuck in their old traditional ways not knowing that the very God they prayed to, stood before their face. "making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye. (Mark 7:13)

So what was Jesus main message?

Matthew 4:23 And Jesus went about ALL Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and Preaching the GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM, and healing ALL manner of sickness and ALL manner of disease among the people. Also (9:35)

Luke 4:43 and he (Jesus) Said unto them I MUST Preach the Kingdom of God. to other cities also: for therefore am I sent.

Luke 9:60 Jesus said unto him, "let the dead bury their dead: but GO thou and Preach the Kingdom of God". It goes on, and on, and on. Almost every page you turn to in the four Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, you will find Jesus telling them things pertaining to the Kingdom of God. When the Gospel of the Kingdom is preached, signs and wonders follow. Luke 9:1-2 Then he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them Power and Authority over ALL devils and to CURE diseases, and he sent them to preach the Kingdom of God, and to heal the sick. The law and the Prophets were until John: Since that time the Kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it (Luke 16:16). People think that the end is soon to come. But the end cannot come because we are not preaching the right message. They say "well in the bible it says once the Gospel of Jesus and salvation has gone around the whole world then Jesus will be back again. WRONG! The bible says in Matthew 24:14 "And THIS Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.

The reason why Jesus gave me this revelation (through his servant and friend David E. Taylor) to share with you is because it is time for us to TAKE THE CITY. How else do you think the Apostles with Paul were able to turn the world upside down? With the Power of God and the revelation of the Gospel of the Kingdom. (Acts 17:6) You see for three and a half long years Jesus spent with his disciples and the people teaching them and drilling it in them with signs and wonders, things pertaining to the Kingdom of God. Even after he died and rose again, to whome also he showed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days. And speaking of the things pertaining to the Kingdom of God.(Acts 1:3) With that Kingdom of God message and the power that Jesus Christ gave to them, they were able to take it and with many signs and wonders following, they were able to turn the world upside down.

What's so Powerful about the Gospel of the Kingdom?

It speaks for itself, it is the good news of God's domain, Dominion, and his habitation which has come on earth. That's why one of the first things that Jesus did was to teach the people to pray, Matthew 6:9-13 Saying "our father which art in heaven Hallowed (Holy) be thy name. THY KINGDOM COME. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. ( His Kingdom has come on earth, so his will shall be done in earth JUST as his will is done in heaven. In heaven his will is that no one is sick, and there is no one sick in heaven. So his will is that no one be sick on earth, as it is in heaven. In heaven there is an abundance of riches, So his will is that his people have an abundance of riches in earth, as it is in heaven. Jesus has Power in earth, Just like he has Power in heaven. Matthew 28:18 are you getting this)? Jesus said in Matthew 12:28 "But if I cast out devils by the spirit of God, then The Kingdom of God is come unto you."

Don't be like the pharisees in Luke 17:20 Who demanded Jesus when the kingdom of God should come. Jesus answered them and said, the Kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, Lo there! for, behold, the Kingdom of God is within you. So don't try to figure it out just receive it. Because we can never figure out God, the minuet you think you got him figured out, he does something different. he's too big for us!

Jesus said in Matthew 6:33 :But seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and ALL these things shall be added unto you. Prosperity comes from the Kingdom of God, Healing comes from the Kingdom of God, Salvation and repentance comes from the Kingdom of God, because that's where Jesus came from. John 8:23 "And he said unto them, ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.

Why is it that there is a church on almost every corner but the city is still in a uproar, filled with crime, hate, and murder? Why is it that most churches can have all of these conventions, and seminars, and board meetings, and conferences, then turn around and argue about titles, positions, and the people sometimes leave out worse than when they came in? (See Massive Kingdom of God in my blog)

We need to get back to the real message that was lost and hidden from the body of Christ for thousands of years. We need to preach what Jesus preached and taught his disciples. The Gospel of the Kingdom. For the Kingdom of God suffereth violence and the violent shall take it by force. Let us pick up where the Apostles left off and do even greater works. Let us turn this world upside down in Jesus name. The Kingdom of God is ALL Power because that is where God dwells. God the father has given Jesus All Power in heaven and in earth, and Jesus in return has given us power. Let us as men and woman of God take that power and turn these principalities upside down" See the Massive Kingdom of God in my blog."

In closing..... PLEASE! do not let Jesus cry over you like he did Jerusalem, because they did not know the hour of their visitation. Neither be like the people who Isaiah Prophesied over saying" For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at anytime they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. (Matthew 13:15)

Don't you know that there are hidden truths and Mysteries of the Kingdom of God? Matthew 13:11 But fear not, little flock; for it is your fathers good pleasure to give you the Kingdom. Luke 12:32.

King James Version Holy Bible

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Peter_D._Scott

The Joy of the Lord

By Abby Phillips

I celebrated a birthday yesterday, and with one more year came a comforting realization for someone who has been through a whole lot of soul-draining pain in the past couple of years.

Joy is a renewable resource.

When, for months, you've been cramming four people (including three giants) into an old two-door vehicle so small that everyone can prop their chins up on their knees...

When you, your diabetic spouse, and your two children have been without health insurance for two years...

When you've had to sell your home and go back to renting, only to have to deal with the "loud kids, parking in the middle of the driveway so we can't get in or out, won't help with the shoveling" downstairs neighbor...

When you've become an expert at the art of attending funerals of loved ones...

When you've been "so broke that I can't even pay attention" for so long that the joke just ain't even funny anymore...

When the ministry that's been placed into your family has been languishing, while waiting for your gift to make room for you, for so long that it's starting to go sour like bad milk...

When days of this have turned to weeks, the weeks have turned into months, and the months have turned into years...

You really do wonder if the promised land, the brighter day, deliverance, breakthrough, Elim, will ever come, or if darkness is just your destiny.

You wonder if by the time things start to get better, you'll be too battered, worn, and bitter to even care anymore.

You wonder if you'll ever get your joy back.

You wonder if God's promise in Joel to restore the years the locusts have eaten actually applies to you.

Well, you might not wonder, but I did.

Happiness depends on happenings. If nothing good is happening, you can't be happy. Joy is not found in us, and is not dependent on circumstance. It's found in Christ. The happening is that He saved us, He'll keep and sustain us, and when it's all over, we'll live and reign with Him forever. That happening never changes, and so our joy never has to end.

But sometimes the constant barrage of painful circumstances and seemingly never-ending trials can cause us to lose our joy. I know it did for me. I reached a place in my life where I said "God, I'm going to sleep now. You would be doing me a favor if You didn't wake me up tomorrow, because life just hurts too much."

But things are getting better now. At last, we see a light at the end of the tunnel. And it's here that I re-insert my declaration.

Joy is a renewable resource.

It's not because I read it in a deep book, or heard it said by a powerful speaker that I know it's true. I know because I've been to the dry and dead place where there seemed to be no hope and no help, and I came back.

And God gave me back my joy.

That's the key. God gave it to me. We can't manufacture it ourselves. If we try to make ourselves exude happiness at all times, even when we're in deep pain, we just end up being a scary Christian version of the Stepford Wives. Everything looks perfect on the outside, but on the inside, something's terribly wrong.

True joy is renewed in us by the Lord. He's the only one who can dry the tears from our eyes and give us beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.

He can and He will. How do I know, you ask?

Because even though we are beginning to see favor and blessings again, we still have no insurance, we're still packed like sardines in that too-small vehicle, still renting, and still broke.

Yet here I am with my joy.

(c) Abby Phillips 2008

Minister Abby Phillips is the author of "I Come to the Garden Alone: Meditations from a Psalmist's Heart" - a devotional, and a featured author in "Refined by Fire: Discovering Victory through Adversity" - a women's encouragement book and "Drink from the Well: Refreshment for the Soul - a women's devotional.

Abby is a licensed minister, registered speaker, published author, and vocalist and songwriter. She is founder of Speak Life Ministries, where she uses her gifts to glorify God, and Speak Life Women's Ministries - an online women's community. She is also the host of Speak Life Live! - an Internet talk radio show.

Abby has a B.S. in Business Administration from Mount Mary College, and is a graphic designer by trade.

She lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with her husband and two sons, and they attend New Testament Church of Milwaukee.

To learn more about Abby, visit http://www.abbyphillips.com

King of Kings - Jesus Christ Mighty Sermon on the Mount


King of Kings (1961)

Coal Out Of Control

By Jason Witt

When you receive the Seal you will see global warming as the coming End-times. You will be interested in the recent news about coal--it has become a hot export and the price has shot up dramatically.

In the spring of 2008 prices of commodities like food and oil are higher than they have been for years. Inflation driven by high energy prices is rising worldwide. And the price of coal is increasing too, making it another overpriced commodity.

The United States has more than a quarter of the world's coal reserves. All the coal in the world is forecast to supply energy needs for another 300 years. The US is fast increasing the amount of coal it exports, leading to a shrinking trade deficit.

Meanwhile China is so hungry for coal now it has stopped exporting any. And still some Chinese factories are experiencing down times when they can not pump out the goods because they do not have enough coal to keep operating.

China is currently consuming 1.4 billion tons of coal each year. The US uses about a billion tons each year, and India about 800 million. Coal is abundant for the time being and is cheap going from mine to plant.

That means coal is making a comeback. For the first time in almost 25 years, Britain is reopening coal mines again. This is a showing of renewed interest in coal in spite of the concerns of environmentalists and rising attempts to curb greenhouse gases.

Coal is one of the dirtiest kinds of fuels, producing a lot of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide, blamed for trapping in the heat of the sun but not letting it escape. But there are various schemes dreamed up for burning coal more cleanly.

These schemes are usually based on the idea the carbon can be captured and sequestered, which means stored underground or below the sea bed. Of course this technology is years from being developed and is still not proven to work.

Over the winter of 2007-2008 coal prices spiked 50 percent or more, and this accounts to more than the increase in oil prices. So many power plant plans have been cancelled because of the rise in prices in addition to environmental reasons.

The worldwide hunger for coal is a disturbing sign of the End-times. Global warming is happening faster than predicted, bringing with it the disastrous effects of climate change.

And where there are efforts to reduce emissions, coal is just exported to a different polluter in another country with fewer restrictions or requirements to stop polluting so much.

With the rising temperatures are rising amounts of natural disasters. Now there are more floods, droughts, wildfires, and severe windstorms than ever before recorded by people. And sea levels are on the rise too.

Jesus also predicted the End of the world. He taught the parable of the fig tree: when the fig tree buds, you know that summer is near. That "summer" is global warming making all the other seasons more like summer each year.

When you are sealed you will await the Return of Jesus. And when He returns, He will return within you. You will not look around in the world to find Jesus. You will look within yourself.

When you are sealed you will no longer have a posterity on earth. You will have no more legacy to leave. You will only look forward to an eternal home in Heaven when you receive the Seal.

And now Jason would like to invite you to download the first 3 chapters of Seal of the Soul as well as another free gift or get the whole book here
Jason Witt

How Do You Carry Your Cross?

By Jocelyn Soriano

You've accepted your cross, you've welcomed to carry it with all your heart, you believed that the difficulties that loom in calvary is nothing compared to the glory that awaits you. Still my friend, you have to carry it, you chose to, and the burden you will carry is a reality you will go through, not an illusion you can skip or vanquish with the best and purest of your intentions. How do you carry your cross? How do you remain steadfast to the very end?

I believe that if there is anyone who can show us how, it is Jesus himself. It wasn't until recently though that I truly believed in the reality of his suffering, in the turmoil he felt within as a man to give him the full credit due for his sacrifice. I guess I've always seen him in my mind as a God more than I've seen him as man. In my mind I'd say, "I can't do it, I'm not God. I'm not as strong, I'm not as good, I'm not as holy."

Surely I was familiar of what he went through; I thought I was. It was something I've always been familiar of, being in a predominantly Catholic country, and having performed church practices such as praying the rosary and the stations of the cross during holy week, not to mention the PASYON, a holy week practice in the Philippines where people gather and recite the passion of Jesus through singing that goes on for days.

Yet not even Mel Gibson's THE PASSION OF CHRIST, which enabled me to vividly see the severe physical tortures Jesus went through was able to convince me of following his last footsteps as a model which a mere person like me can take. He was still a God, someone who though experiencing all those pains he had should have had more holiness in him than all of us combined to carry him over his ordeal.

It was only at a latter time when I've experienced some rather difficult times that enabled me to really understand. It was a time when I felt so alone. It was a time when I felt that even God had abandoned me.

And then I remembered. I remembered one of the few words Jesus said at the cross, "My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?" And then I realized, that what Jesus went through was real, what turmoil he felt was real as to make him say those words. He who knew his mission so clearly, He who believed He would rise again, He who performed great miracles in the presence of many was able to utter those words. How could he utter it had he not been a man, as real and as born of the flesh as you and me?

He struggled, he really did. It had not been any easier for him. It had not been any less painful. He knew the weight of his cross, he took it, he cried out in pain, and he struggled to carry it to the very end. How did he carry it? Let's try to walk the path of the cross where he tread.

1. Jesus falls but he perseveres

Feeling all wonderful inside for our God-given mission and deciding to carry our cross that comes along with it doesn't mean we'll never encounter any difficulties anymore in carrying it. Along the way our faith may be challenged, along the way this world may wear us down and we waver in our stance. In our weakness we may stumble and fall. At times we fall slightly, at times we fall real hard we don't know if we could ever get up again. But let not such times discourage us. Let it not imprint in our minds that the cross we carry is heavier than we can bear. Accept that such things happen. And that what matters really is not how hard or how many times you fall, but how you get up and carry on.

2. Jesus gets hurt but he forgives

Jesus was mocked, scourged, spat upon, even nailed! Add to that how he was abandoned by his friends, how he was betrayed, how Peter denied he even knew him. Jesus had all the right to be angry, to be furious at all those people who hurt him, especially with those he called his friends. He had every right to, and I believe he struggled with such feelings that naturally comes upon every man. Yet he didn't. He decided to forgive.

When I was younger I thought this was only because he was a God, that it was all a sign of his goodness and righteousness. Now I know such an act is not necessarily reserved for him alone. Now I know that this is something I'm being called upon to do not merely to be good, but moreso because this is what's good for me to do.

The burden of the cross is already enough for you to bear. You cannot carry additional loads with you. Not your grudges, not your anger, not your bitterness. If you are to carry your cross, you must learn to forgive, and unload that burden from your heart.

3. Jesus was in pain yet he encouraged another

All of us carry a cross of our own, but that doesn't mean we are already excused from showing concern for one another, and from sharing our hopes to those who have none. When the thief asked Jesus to remember him, Jesus never said, "Hey, can't you see I'm also crucified over here? Can't you see I'm dying too? Why don't you mind your own nails and let's talk about that paradise later when I'm no longer in pain?"

None of those words many of us might have said in disgust. But rather, in the midst of all his pain, thirsty and wounded, drenched with his own blood, Jesus uttered, "Today, you will be with me in paradise."

4. Jesus struggles to the point of feeling forsaken, but he rises above his feelings and rests his trust upon the Father

In your despair, in times when the diffulties around you seem greater than the flame of hope that remains burning within you, in moments when you can't even feel God's presence anymore, believe it or not my friend, but even in such a time, we still have a choice.

We can choose to be angry, we can choose to give up all hope, we can choose to have a soul far darker than the darkness surrounding us. We can choose to go spiralling downwards and sink forever in our misery.

But we can also choose to protect what little hope we have left. Though we cannot change the darkness outside of us, we can choose to have a little light burning deep within our soul. We can choose to cling on to that remaining sign of life in our hearts. We can choose to surrender when we know we've done our best and we can no longer carry on. Jesus did. For how can someone who cried out, "My God, why have you abandoned me?" say later on, "Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit"? How could he have said that to the same God he felt had forsaken him if he had not been convinced God had been there for him all along?

It was a very close call. But Jesus chose life in the midst of darkness. He conquered even death. He was victorious. He rises again and lives!

The cross is real, as real as Jesus himself experienced it. He showed us the way to carry it, thus making the rough symbol of shame and death a true emblem of trials overcome, of light in the midst of darkness and of faith that triumphs no matter what kind of burden we bear upon our shoulders.

Joice works currently as an auditor, but continues to write and reach for her dreams of writing fulltime and being able to touch and inspire lives through her writing. From her humble beginnings, she was able to work her way through college through her various scholarships, graduating Summa Cum Laude in 1996. She has published a book on a screenplay chosen as finalist in a National scriptwriting contest. She loves early mornings, chatting over a cup of coffee, walking along the beach, and singing her heart out with her best buddies. http://www.itakeoffthemask.com/

Christians Desperately Seek God

By Dorothy K Daigle

Has Christianity lost sight of God? What an awesome thought! However, if that is the case, then Christians are in dire straits. Could the very elect of Christianity have been deceived? Read the following and judge for yourself so you won't be one of those Left Behind.

Millions of Christians worship Christ, and this needs to be examined. What does this worship entail? Does this mean we have lost sight of God?

First we need to understand Christ. Levi tells us in The Aquarian Gospel of Jesus the Christ, that Christ is the Divine Love of God. God the Father found pure residence in the heart of Jesus for His Spirit to abide. This was done so mankind could see Christ as a desireable attribute of a human, and by doing so, be able to apply it to their own lives. Jesus wants us to become one with God the Father just as he was one with God the Father. (John 17:21)

Is it the same thing to worship Christ as it is to worship Jesus? The first commandment tells us to worship only God, this being God the Father. The ten precepts, or Ten Commandments, were given by God to Moses on Mt. Sinai. Jesus tells us if we love God and want to enter into (eternal) life, we will keep His (Father's) commandments. (Matt. 19:17)

If we worship Jesus the son of man instead of God the Father, we are going against the will of our heavenly Father, in Christian terms, we are sinning. But if we worship Christ within Jesus, knowing this Divine Love we call Christ is of God the Father, then we are in harmony with Creator. If we worship Jesus the son of man, then we have lost sight of God the Father and are breaking the first commandment.

This is why Jesus said he is the way, the truth, and the life, because it was Christ within him that was the way, the truth, and the life. He and the Father were one through Christ--through Unconditional Love. In the same way, Jesus wants us to be one with God the Father and with him. (John 17:21)

Dorothy was taught by Cherokee elder and wisdom keeper, John Red Hat Duke, for over ten years in Keetoowah Cherokee spiritual ways, in Eastern philosophy, and in Judaism. She was raised Christian so she has a good working knowledge of Christianity. She became disillusioned with Christianity so she now follows no religion, but strives to walk the Red Road spiritual path according to Jesus' teachings.

She received her call from Creator in the fall of '92, and was then taught by the great prophet Elijah for four years. She was given four assurances by Creator when He called her. She was told that she was anointed by the Holy One of Israel, that she would be protected until this work was done, that Creator would go before her whenever He sent her somewhere, and that she did not have to prove herself to anyone. She is one of Creator's two prophesied witnesses. She carries wisdom of many years of living under Creator's guidance and direction.

Dorothy shares teachings of Jesus, Moses, Elijah, and Cherokee elder John Red Hat Duke on the site, http://groups.msn.com/RedRoad The Red Road spiritual path of the ancients is taught in the book, Red Hat Speaks, by Dorothy K. Daigle, and can be ordered from any bookstore.

The Top Ten Myths About Prayer

Author: David Jordan

Prayer is difficult. Surely God doesn't listen to me. I really don't know how to pray. These nagging questions are simply myths about prayer.

1. It's hard to pray.
That's what is so much fun about a myth. It's easy to show the truth through it. Praying is easy. Like anything else, if you want to do it really well, okay, that will take a little time. But, think of all the prayers that will be answered on your way to getting good at it. Whew. Also, and this is no myth, life is much harder "to do" when you don't pray.

2. I am not worthy.
Here is why knowing the Bible is so important. God says that WHOSOEVER comes to Him shall be saved. He will hear your prayer. The enemy of your soul is the only one that doesn't want you to think you are worthy. You are so worthy that God sent Jesus to die for your sins.

The Bible also says that no greater love hath a man for a brother than to give up his life for him. Sound familiar. No greater love does God show for you than the fact that he gave Jesus to die for you so you could spend eternity with God. Oh yes, you are worthy.

3. God doesn't listen to me.
God not only listens to you he hears you. This, of course is what makes so many people nervous. Why do we say God doesn't listen to us but then get afraid that God is hearing what we are saying? God answers all prayers.

What you will learn as you pray and grow in your praying is that God answers the prayers the way He knows is best for us. Ouch. What you will also find is that you will marvel at what God knew about you when He chooses to answer a prayer with a "no". We're not in half as much trouble as if He would have said, "Yeah, fine go ahead."

4. Prayer won't work.
Journals of individuals of every race and language are filled with how God answered their prayers. Person after person after person. I mentioned before that prayers aren't always answered the way we want them to be at this instant. They are answered better than that.

The more you pray the more you will experience that. What you will also find is that you will learn and experience real peace. You will find that real peace is something that God gives us in-spite of our circumstances not because of our circumstances. And, the bottom line? You will find that prayer mixed with your actions will work much better than not praying at all.

5. I don't know how to pray.
Well, for starters, if you just really truly mean what you are praying, you are doing it right. And, there is even software out there to help you pray and enjoy it at the same time.

6. I don' have time to pray.
There is an old saying that goes: we don't have time to do it right the first time but we always have time to do it right the second time. It's the same with prayer. We don't have time to do it until we've blown it and then suddenly there is time to pray and pray hard which could have helped us not blow it in the first place.

7. I have to be in a church to pray.
To pray? Church is a nice place to pray and we can learn how to pray even better there. But, if you follow Jesus' way, his most effective prayers were done "on the road" - that's where the blind gained their sight, the lame their strength and where He raised the dead.

8. God doesn't have time for my prayers.
Who told you that? Remember, there is an enemy of our souls and that enemy wants to do whatever it takes to discourage you from doing what would help you. God never said or wrote at any time that He doesn't have time for our prayers.

He did say He knows when a sparrow falls and that the hairs on our head are numbered. If God has the time to count the hairs on our head, He has time to listen to what you have to say or ask.

God is so much bigger than you can imagine. Don't limit God by comparing Him to even the biggest smartest nicest person you know. God is a spirit and we worship Him in Spirit and in truth. He is what the church world calls Omnipresent. That means He is everywhere at once. Cool.

9. Prayer is for other people.
Yes, it's ALSO for other people. That's why God is so big. He has all these people He listens to and helps through life. So, He is not only for you but also for other people.

10. I don't know what to pray
Maybe what you are saying is I don't know how to pray really well. Let's be honest - Jesus said, "whoever calls on my name I will answer." Well, if you called on Jesus' name and He answered you - Hmm I think that must have been a prayer. Bingo, you got it. That's where you start.

Now get on with the program and START praying. The more you pray the better you will get at it and the more powerful you will feel about your prayers and your place in this world.

David Jordan is a prayer warrior and prayer myth buster. He wants to help you experience the power of prayer for yourself. Visit http://www.prayerquake.net/ for a life-changing prayer experience.

Jesus Changed My Life

Author: Linda Dipman

If Jesus was suppose to be a warrior king, then why did He come as a peacemaker? Why did Jesus associate with the poor, prostitutes, tax collectors and those who were considered to be sinners? Why was Jesus crucified when all He did was good works during His lifetime?

Many great theologians of the Bible try to answer these questions by asking even more questions. They wondered why a man who could heal the sick and perform many miracles would come and not a warrior who would drive the Roman government out of the Jewish land.

Jesus came as a servant to people with a message of hope for those who would place their faith in Him. They expected a king that would lead them to war against Rome. Instead, Jesus told them if a Roman soldier asked you to carry his load for one mile, you were suppose to carry his load for two miles.

They expected a Son of God who would fight against everyone that was oppressing them. Instead, Jesus told them to turn the other cheek. They expected a Prince, instead they received a man who told them to love your enemies and to do good to those who persecute you.

Everything about Jesus was unexpected and totally opposite from the fierce, sword welding man they anticipated. They got a man full of love, a man who had a spiritual wisdom that far surpassed the teachings of the Pharisees.

Jesus was a poor carpenter, a man who told them stories in parables, who refused to draw lines separating the poor from the rich, and treated everyone alike.

Many great historians of the Bible have told the story of Jesus, but many today do not understand why He had to die on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins. They just accept the story without really understanding the concept of grace.

Many years ago God spoke to me supernaturally and explained that I had a lot to learn in this world. At the time I thought I was living a righteous Christian life believing that I did not sin. It wasn't long before God turned everything that I thought I knew upside down and revealed to me the truth about my life and the purpose behind the world.

We live in a teaching world. Each of us has an appointed destiny to fulfill that can only be achieved in a corrupt and evil world. Each of us has spiritual goals that must be accomplished so we will learn the difference between right and wrong.

Galatians 1: 15 & 16, "But God in his grace chose me even before I was born, and called me to serve him. And when he decided to reveal his Son to me, so that I might preach the Good News about him to the Gentiles, I did not go to anyone for advice."

I learned to listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit and I began to see the world for what it was. In my quest to understand my call, I immersed myself in the Bible and biblical history books. I found proofs from what I read and through the teaching of the Holy Spirit.

God explained to me that I was to look at the world as if I was in a huge multifaceted game. A world game that challenges us to learn the difference between right and wrong. A game that demanded that I trust Him completely.

Hebrews 11: 1 & 2, "To have faith is to be sure of the things we hope for, to be certain of the things we cannot see. It was by their faith that people of ancient times won God's approval."

Adams' sin created the game of life when he ate the apple in order to be as wise as God. Wisdom demands differences that can only be interpreted through good and bad examples. The only way we can humanly learn is by going through different levels of difficulties in the game of life. Our goal is to master the sin that wants to control us.

This is the reason why grace had to come into being. Jesus changed every concept of life by making it simple for people to receive forgiveness of sin. This means that we can fail the tests we go through in life. We can sin and have the freedom to once again seek forgiveness for our sins. Grace allows us to be bad so we can learn from doing wrong.

Galatians 2: 16, "Yet we know that a person is put right with God only through faith in Jesus Christ, never by doing what the Law requires. We, too, have believed in Christ Jesus in order to be put right with God through our faith in Christ, and not by doing what the Law requires. For no one is put right with God by doing what the Law requires."

When Jesus refused to be a warrior king He showed us that our world's complexities extended far beyond the families we were born in or the countries we were apart. He illustrated this to the people by refusing to acknowledge a difference between a Samaritan woman, a Roman soldier or a Jewish priest. Jesus came to bring us a new teaching.

One of the very first lessons that God taught me was to pray for protection from Satan. Satan was created by God and is the source of all evil in the world. He tempts people and persuades them, by the things of the world, to give into their desires.

Galatians 1: 4, "In order to set us free from this present evil age, Christ gave himself for our sins, in obedience to the will of our God and Father."

Jesus' ministry was not about the Laws of Moses, but rather about placing our faith in Him for the forgiveness of our sins. This made believing in God easy. The Law demanded ritual sacrifices for sin that put a heavy burden on people. But surrendering ourselves to Jesus and believing in the power of His name brings everyone into fellowship with God equally and sets us free from the power of sin.

During the time of Jesus the Pharisees and Sadducees were the wealthiest families in Israel. They were not only rich, but they were highly respected by the people and the Roman government. When Jesus came preaching a simple path to God, they were outraged because it would destroy their luxurious lifestyles. This is why they wanted Him dead.

Galatians 2: 3-5, "My companion Titus, even though he is Greek, was not forced to be circumcised, although some wanted it done. Pretending to be fellow believers, these men slipped into our group as spies, in order to find out about the freedom we have through our union with Christ Jesus. They wanted to make slaves of us, but in order to keep the truth of the gospel safe for you, we did not give into them for a minute."

Paul describes in this passage how important it is to hold onto the concept of grace. Grace makes us all equal. We do not have to follow the regulations of the Law because we are all destined to make mistakes that can only be forgiven through our faith in Jesus Christ.

Galatians 3: 22, "But the scripture says that the whole world is under the power of sin; and so the gift which is promised on the basis of faith in Jesus Christ is given to those who believe."

When you are in a life game you will go through persecutions and difficulties in order to learn from what you experienced. Satan uses families, societies, and governments to destroy anyone who is trying to do what is right. He uses the people of the world to fight against every person who is determined to follow Jesus.

Our world is a teaching world. The only way we can see our need for Christ is for us to go through some kind of injustice to reveal to us why the wealthy and influential are wrong. In order to find right we must experience wrong.

During the time of Jesus many people were not allowed to go into the temple area. People who had deformities from birth to people from foreign descent were not allowed to worship God. This is the reason why Jesus opposed the teachers of the Law over the difference between the Law compared to grace. Grace allows everyone access to God. Grace brings the Holy Spirit into peoples lives and allows people to worship God in Spirit.

We are born into a corrupt and evil world where everyone agrees that injustice reigns supreme. Jesus came to give life to people who were destined to follow God. People who would fight in different levels against injustice in the game of life against all people who love the world.

Jesus came to train up Christian soldiers who would fight against the evil practices of people who choose evil. Jesus is opposite from the world and when we follow Him we simply do not fit in this world.

When Jesus began to talk to me I changed. He showed me how the world is our greatest teacher. He proved to me that if I would place my faith in Him, He would save me from the world.

Linda C Dipman author of The Game Of Life It's Almost Over http://outskirtspress.com/gameoflife presents And His Love Shone Down, my true life story! It describes all the persecutions I endured. It will put you on the edge of your seat as you read each vivid detail. You will feel terror and experience love like nothing you have ever read before. lovinghandsministry.com

Doing The Lords Work

Author: Mike Fletcher

Finding the Lord and welcoming the Holy Spirit into your heart can change your life. It can fill you with a peace that is unexplainable. However, as Christians we are compelled to take action once we have come to know the Lord.

If you are a believer, you must take action and share your faith with others. When you evangelize, you are becoming a shining light to the world and a disciple doing the Lord's work. What does this action involve?
You have to live it. You need to both talk the talk and walk the walk. This means that your actions should match your beliefs. Do not just be a Christian for one hour a day on Sunday.

As Christians we are taught to help others. Christ demonstrated this again and again in the Bible. Going out of your way to help others does three things. First it has an immediate benefit on the person you are helping. Second, it makes you feel good to know that you are helping others in need. Third, you are showing the world the heart of a Christian.

We also must share our faith in the Lord. Be careful not to preach to heavily or to cram your beliefs down the throats of others, this can repel them away from you. Instead, live the life of a Christian and others will see that you are different, that you walk with a light that they would like to have.

Another effective way to spread the word of God to others is by wearing Christian t-shirts and Christian jewelry. People will see the message that you wear on your back, or around your neck. Christian t-shirts are great conversation starters and are a way to evangelize without even having to open your mouth to say a word.

There is something about being bold that God seems to answer. We as believers are sent out to the world to share our faith. We are commanded by Jesus when he delivered the Sermon on the Mount to be salt and light. Salt influences and flavors all it comes into contact with. So should we.

Jesus also said we are to be lights to a dark world. He said a city on a hill can not be hidden. Our light is to shine before men. So at every opportunity and with every person, that light should shine forth from us. We are to be beacons that points the way to Christ.

Do not forget about the power of prayer. Pray for others. Pray for the opportunity to share the joys of being a Christian to others and you will be amazed at what results can come.

Being a disciple and doing the Lord's work is truly rewarding. You are growing closer to God and earning both a place for you in heaven, and hopefully bringing some others with you.

The author is publisher of the (Online Christian Shopper) Christian T-Shirt Shop and the (Christian Jewelry Online) Christian jewelry store.

Antichrist Stealing Salvation from Millions of Christians

By Dorothy K Daigle

Christians are in grave danger of having their salvation stolen by the Antichrist. But there is hope. Read the following and ensure you are not deceived and "left behind."

Antichrist is a term that is associated with Satan and the dark forces. Anti- is a prefix meaning against. Obviously, the term Antichrist would refer to someone who is against Christ. When we understand that Christ is not a man, but is the Divine Love of God the Father, then we understand that the being and spirit of the Antichrist are against Love. And scripture tells us that God is Love. (I John 4:8)

We can know then that the Antichrist is against Love. But what does this have to do with Christians being in danger of having the Antichrist steal their salvation? Because if Satan can get us to hate, or pass judgment with condemnation, then he has won! Through hate he can turn us against God, and through judgment he can stop the flow of God's Love.

Jesus told us in John 3:3 that unless a man is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God. Obviously this would mean that the man who is not born again does not have salvation. If he cannot see the Kingdom of God, he won't be inheriting eternal life in God's presence. (This would mean one cannot inherit eternal life just because Jesus died on the cross! Christian doctrine and Jesus' teaching on how we can gain eternal life are mutually exclusive!)

But we can be born again of the spirit, i.e. inherit eternal life, by choosing to love God, others, and ourselves unconditionally as Jesus taught in Luke 10:25-28. When we love God, others, and ourselves unconditionally, then we have put on the full armor of God and no one can touch our souls! We will be in no danger of the Antichrist stealing our salvation. We can choose not to be left behind!

Dorothy was taught by Cherokee elder and wisdom keeper, John Red Hat Duke, for over ten years in Keetoowah Cherokee spiritual ways, in Eastern philosophy, and in Judaism. She was raised Christian so she has a good working knowledge of Christianity. She became disillusioned with Christianity so she now follows no religion, but strives to walk the Red Road spiritual path according to Jesus' teachings.

She received her call from Creator in the fall of '92, and was then taught by the great prophet Elijah for four years. She was given four assurances by Creator when He called her. She was told that she was anointed by the Holy One of Israel, that she would be protected until this work was done, that Creator would go before her whenever He sent her somewhere, and that she did not have to prove herself to anyone. She is one of Creator's two prophesied witnesses. She carries wisdom of many years of living under Creator's guidance and direction.

Dorothy shares teachings of Jesus, Moses, Elijah and Cherokee elder John Red Hat Duke on the site, http://groups.msn.com/RedRoad The Red Road spiritual path of the ancients is taught in the book, Red Hat Speaks, by Dorothy K. Daigle, and can be ordered from any bookstore. We can learn to be "born again" so we will see the Kingdom of God.

Dreams From Beyond

By Charlotte Fairchild

Jack Snell was a gentle man with a gentle and kind voice. He was tall, educated, proactive in areas of social issues, on television with people early in the morning discussing issues of the day with a Rabbi and a Priest in Jacksonville, Florida for years. He was active in the Cooperative Baptist Church, and very active in missions. There are so many good things I could say about him and how important he was to me when I was a chaplain and a struggling female ordained chaplain.

Two areas he did not give me confidence and blessings were preaching, because women did not preach from his pulpit. It wasn't just me, it was all the people behind the pulpit being male. He ordained women during his life time, and perhaps women did preach after I left his circle of influence.

He had the opportunity to ordain me. I asked him to ordain me before I asked anyone else, and he encouraged me to get ordained somewhere else. Because he chose that, I was ordained in Milledgeville, Georgia, and I did not ask for help to get into the military. One had to have a position with the title chaplain to get into the military, and no church would hire me in the Southern Baptist denomination in 1988 with the title of chaplain. No ministers were asking me to fill in, no mortuaries were asking me to preach, and I wasn't invited to be on television with Jack. He and I met in 1986 when I joined his church.

So I applied and went through the physical and passed everything to get into the Navy as a chaplain in 1988 except for the title minister. I never asked Jack to help me because he had passed on ordaining a woman he had known active as a chaplain resident. I had to go to a place that had known me for three months to become ordained and that was truly a miracle. They did not offer the pulpit to me. I have only preached in one church in my life that was Southern Baptist, Sparta Baptist Church, in Sparta, Georgia.

A few years ago, I called him up, and asked him if he would have given me the title of minister and $1.00 a month so that I could have gotten into the Navy in 1988, and he swallowed hard, and said yes. I asked him if he had said no in 1988, where would I have gone? Where could I have worshiped? Maybe then he knew what he had done by passing on my ordination. Maybe he ordained many women, and I was the exception.

So I had a dream. He was yellowed as though he had liver problems, and he was very busy. So many ministers are busy. I was at his office in Jacksonville maybe, and he was gentle as always. He talked to me, telling me good things. Then I told him I had something important to tell him, about something that would help him become healthier, and he told me he would look into it, and then the door was shut, and I sat down in an empty chair that looked like a musical chairs line up and waited. He opened the door again, and we talked again. I knew that what I had to say would be swallowed up with all the things that he was doing, and not make a difference in helping him. With great sadness that he didn't regard me as important, and what I had to say as helpful, I woke up.

My circle of influence with people is not so large, but the people mean quite a lot to me. I was one of the least of these, and Jack missed me. Maybe he would be alive today if only I really had been one of the least of these to him. What this says to ministers today, is to really look at people, and see them. You might miss Jesus inside the least of these.

(c) 2008 Charlotte Fairchild

Author Bio: Born in Bethesda Naval Hospital, Charlotte Fairchild traveled as a Navy child, and was ordained in 1987 at FBC Milledgeville, GA. She served as a chaplain for 11 years, 7 of which were in a volunteer capacity, including at Emory Parkway Medical Center on 9/11. It was closed 5 months after 9/11, and demolished within two years. She is a writer and speaker of kudzu, fertility, roses, and has preached at a Southern Baptist church once, United Methodist Churches 15 times, Lutheran and Presbyterian churches once each. Fertile Prayers is her first published book. Kudzu Kwestions will help find her several blogs. Fertility and miscarriage are part of her ministries. fertileprayers@yahoo.com is her email address.
The road that is built in hope is more pleasant to the traveler than the road built in despair, even though they both lead to the same destination.

- Marion Zimmer Bradley

A New World Order Coming!

By: David Ben-Ariel

Yet out of ashes & rubble of repentance
A New World Order will arise
Spoken of by the Prophets who
Assure us of Europe's demise
Ten little naked emperors with
Towers will quake and fall
And the crawling Child will suddenly
Stand and walk six feet tall
The Gods will dwell among men
With Earth restored to Eden again
The King of Righteousness reigns
And nothing will ever be the same
The old world has passed away
The Dawn has given birth to a new day
Let Elijah herald Babylon is fallen, fallen
For in Judah and Jerusalem God is exulted!
Jerusalem is remembered and redeemed
Israel a Kingdom of Light to be seen
The Darkness couldn't bend Heaven's Will
Ancient of Days in His people fulfilled!

About the Author

David Ben-Ariel, an American author who has travelled widely and who has lived throughout Israel, shares a special focus on the Middle East and great interest in Jerusalem, reflected in hard-hitting articles that help others improve their understanding of that troubled region. Check out http://www.benariel.com/

Not Yo' Momma's Church!

By Emil Swift and Michele Swift

Someone told me years ago how he'd been on an airplane flight and wound up talking to the person next to him about being a Christian. When he asked her, "If you died tonight, do you know where you'd go?" his seat partner assured him she'd go to Heaven.

"Why?" he persisted. The answer: "Because my grandfather was a minister, a devout Christian."

"But don't you know," he asked, "God has no grandchildren."

His point? You can't depend on being OK with God just because your mom or your grandpa or someone in your family is a Christian. Either you're God's child by yourtrusting Jesus Christ for salvation from sin and death yourself, or you're not God's child yet.

Back in Moses' day, about 3,000 years ago, God tried to get the Hebrew people to relate to Him on a close and personal basis. He called the entire nation -- men, women and children -- to draw close to Him as His "priests". Now a priest is someone who stands between people and God, helping them to relate to God without them having to get too close and personal. But the people refused, afraid that they might die if they got too close to God. So, instead, they begged Moses to go ahead and become "God's friend" while they stood a long, ways back to watch, wait and see if the fearsome God of Moses killed him.

But Moses lived. And he became their "priest". But centuries later, when Jesus died on the Cross and washed your sins away, He did it so that youwould be able to get close to God and not need any priestly "go-between" ever again. Now, each one of us is our ownpriest. God says, "Youdraw near to Me and I'll draw near to you." He says, "I've made all of you a whole nation of priests in my Kingdom -- every one of you!"

Not only do we NOT need a priest between us and God (since we ARE the priests), furthermore, God won't LET us have "priests" between us and Him. He doesn't even want Mom's faith or Grandpa's faith between you and Him. It's only your personal faith that counts!

He wants us to relate personally and directly in His Spirit to Him. He wants us to know Him intimately, not His theology or His church rituals. He wants us, in His Spirit, to be one with Him -- to virtually live in Him and for Him to live in us.

Looking at it this way, it should be clear why (if you're only going to your mom's church or your grandpa's church) you're NOT going to God's church. It's not God's church until it's your church!

There's another wrinkle in the fabric of this idea we still need to iron out: "Church" is not a place but a relationship. You can no more "go to a church" than you can "go to a friendship" or "attend a love". Love and friendship is something that happens between you and another. It's not a place to go to -- and neither is the Church of Jesus Christ.

See, Jesus promised, "I will build My Church, and the strategies of hell itself won't prevail over it." But if you look on a map for the geographical location of this "Church" Jesus is building, you'll never find it. It isn't a place, it's a Person. It's a relationship. Specifically, when you receive Him as your Savior, "church " is the relationship Jesus supernaturally creates between you and Him and between you and everyone else who's "in Christ". This relationship is "church". Jesus describes it as the people who are "joined and knitted together" -- a living organism linked by Love and accurately displaying Him to the rest of the world.

So -- are you still going to "your momma's church"? Are you still hoping your "Grandpa's faith" in God is going to buy you Heaven with God?

Well, it won't. God wants you -- He wants you to draw near to Him and He'll draw near to you. He wants you to be knitted and linked by Love to all the others who are in Christ. It's time to quit going to church and, instead, be the Church!

© 2008 by Emil B. Swift

"KingdomScribes" is a ministry led by Emil and Michele Swift. Their website can be found at KingdomScribes.net/

The Swifts have been called by God to minister together uniquely to the Body of Christ and share a revelatory teaching ministry - gifted in the Spirit to teach mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven in a simple, direct fashion. Emil and Michele are "Kingdom Scribes" whose hearts are to raise every Believer into living and ministering in the power of the Spirit and the Word as "scribes of the Kingdom". A passion to engage the hearts, souls and spirits of their listeners has led the Swifts into a teaching style characterized by its lack of religion, rituals and church jargon. They minister in words easily understood by those to whom they speak.

Bible Verses

a slide show of Bible verses set to music....enjoy Added: May 08, 2006 a slide show of Bible verses set to music....enjoy

The Great Men Of History

By: Rob VandeWeghe

Ask anybody: “Who are the great men in human history?” Likely you will hear names such as Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Napoleon, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, or perhaps even Ronald Reagan. What do these men have in common? What made them great? They were successful because they were powerful, and with this power they changed the course of history by their heroic actions, or by ruling countries or even whole continents.

How different these “great men” are when compared to the person of Jesus of Nazareth! Jesus had little of what made these great men of history great: certainly no political clout, no military machine, no war chest. Most of us know the basic facts about Jesus’ life and ministry, but still, read the following summary of the powerful impact of His message, His death and His resurrection:

“Jesus was born in an obscure village, the child of a peasant woman.
He grew up in another village where He worked in a carpenter shop until He was thirty.
For three years He was a traveling preacher. He never wrote a book.
He never held an office. He fathered no family; he owned no home. He didn’t go to college.
He never visited a big city. He never traveled more than two hundred miles from the
place where He was born. He did none of the things that usually accompany greatness.
He had no credentials but himself.
He was only thirty-three when the tide of public opinion turned against Him.
His friends ran away. One of them denied Him. He was turned over to His enemies and
went through the mockery of a trial. He was nailed to a cross between two thieves.
While He was dying, His executioners gambled for His garments, the only property
He had on earth. When He was dead, He was laid in a borrowed grave through the pity
of a friend.
Twenty centuries have come and gone, and today He is the central figure of the human race.
All the armies that ever marched, all the navies that ever sailed, all the parliaments that ever
sat, all the kings that ever reigned, put together, have not affected the life of man on this earth,
as much as that one solitary life.“

How different is Jesus compared to the great world leaders. Alexander the Great and Napoleon were fabled warriors – Jesus never held a sword or led an army. George Washington liberated his people from foreign occupation – Jesus never raised even His voice against the Roman occupiers of His country. Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, and Ronald Reagan were all elected to head powerful governments – Jesus never ran for office. He never marshaled the power of government to enforce social changes. Most renowned leaders have been wealthy– Jesus owned little and lived with the poor. And lastly, all great world leaders were famous during their lifetime, but are dead now – Jesus died as a criminal and was executed by crucifixion, but His death was the birth of Christianity.

Jesus of Nazareth is by far the greatest person in history. He did not pursue the agendas which made others great, still He towers above them all. He turned the world upside down as no one had done before or has done after Him. Now one-third of the world population calls themselves His followers, Christians, and even those who do not follow Him still experience the impact He had, has had, and will have on the world. This observation alone sets Him aside from all others.

Rob VandeWeghe is a skeptic turned Christian by studying the foundations for Christianity. Rob’s book ‘Prepared to Answer’ and more evidences for Christianity are available at http://www.windmillministries.org./

Why The Sum Of All Religions Can't Amount To Knowledge Of God

By Hannah Henderson

It seems logical to reason that one can achieve spiritual enlightenment through the acceptance and practice of the good aspects of every religion. However, like any other discipline, religion has a foundation of core teachings that determine if one is even permitted to accept instruction from other belief systems.

It's interesting to note that the Protestant Bible actually aligns the building of faith in God to the construction of an invisible, but very real, building into which the believer is to move permanently. Scripture even advises one to sit down and think over such a task before undertaking it, to determine if he really wants to construct a sound structure that must not fail him later. Certainly if one cannot even plan a foundation, he can never hope to lay one. If he cannot lay a foundation, he has nothing on which to raise walls, place a ceiling, and add barriers, making his building a fortress.

Jesus asked, "for which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient (will power/desire) to finish it (KJV, Luke 14.28)?

What would cause the believer not to be able to finish his building in Christ? Obviously, the lack of supplies would stop him. What are his supplies? The teachings of the doctrine of Christ, in Christianity, are his supplies, along with his willingness to follow them. This is only one of literally a vast number of scriptures that should cause a person to realize that the materials used to construct knowledge of the sound doctrine, or building of Christ, cannot be grabbed from any source. If this were not the case, all the builder would have to do when he ran out of supplies is take from another source, in other words, from any other doctrine.

One might suggest that a person then lay his foundation from materials not belonging to the restrictive doctrine of Christ. The logic would be that an inter-faith foundation would be a lot more flexible to accept the good building supplies from many sources (doctrines). However, Christ doesn't allow the taking of his materials to be added to a foundation that he did not supply. This is why he was very descriptive in what kind of content makes up his foundation.

In a nutshell, any foundation that denies and rejects him as the one and only Christ of God is identified in the Bible as being of the spirit of anti-Christ (1 John 2:22-23). Any foundation that denies and rejects his divinity is also identified as being of the spirit of anti-Christ. Where does the Bible say this? The scripture of 1 John 4.1-3 speaks of the significance of Jesus' coming to Earth "in the flesh". "In the flesh" refers directly to divinity--God in the flesh. How can one be sure of this? In the very first verse of the New Testament book of St. John, it's recorded that, "in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." Later, verse 14 of the same chapter (one), says that, "the Word was made flesh." Having previously called the Word "God", the reader is being plainly told that God came "in the flesh".

People continue to mix and mingle the beliefs, teachings, and doctrines of various religions. However, when they attempt to include bits and pieces from the doctrine of Christ which will not be broken into pieces, they end up with neither a foundation, nor a building that is acceptable to Christ.

Jesus spoke plainly and authoritatively when he said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me (St. John 14:6).

Christ is the foundation for every believer in his word. These various believers cooperate with him in the building on to that foundation. However, the foundation, completed structure, and adornment that they work with, are all encompassed in the one and same doctrine.

Again, the Bible teaches that, "other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 3:11).

The Bible teaches why the sum of all religions can't amount to the knowledge of God.

Hannah Henderson is one of the writers for Heavenly Manna Web Ministries.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Dem Bones, Dem Bones Gonna Walk Aroun'!

By Emil Swift and Michele Swift

A few teeth, a jaw, a hank of hair -- I recently found a number of odd looking bones in the berry bushes at the edge of my property. Gathering as many as I could find, I took the dark and disgusting bones to a friend who used to be our local wildlife biologist for the Forest Service for identification.

"Raccoon," she instantly decided, looking at the pile of bones, pointing out a piece of a jaw here and some teeth there. Know what would have been the strangest surprise in the world? If, as we stared at the pile of disconnected, disjointed bones, they'd suddenly begun to move about like some bad horror flick -- shifting and trembling to finally find again their appropriate, articulate places -- all strangely coming back together.

How weird, if before our eyes, the skeleton of a raccoon came together by some invisible means.

Yeah, exactly like that old spiritual, "Dem Dry Bones!", with your "leg bone connected to your knee bone, your knee bone connected to your thigh bone, your thigh bone connected to your hip bone..." And eventually everything connected to "your head bone" and then "Dem bones, dem bones gonna walk aroun'!"

This old spiritual comes right out of the Bible. The Old Testament prophet, Ezekiel, has a vision of a whole "valley" full of "dry bones". Then God said to the prophet, "Prophesy to these bones, speak to them and tell them to live!"

In Ezekiel's vision, as the Wind of God's Spirit began to blow, the prophet watched the bones stir into action and begin to connect themselves; he watched as flesh and muscle tissue enveloped the bare, dry bones and soon an entire army stood in front of him.

All in a spiritual vision, of course.

About 3,000 years ago.

Why did God show Ezekiel this peculiar vision? What's His point? Does it apply to us today?

The bones represent God's people. The fact the bones are disjointed, dry and scattered throughout a desert valley is a picture of God's people disjointed, dry and scattered.

Just before Jesus gave Himself to be crucified, He prayed to His Father in Heaven. He prayed about us. About everyone who has ever claimed to be a follower of Jesus Christ.

He prayed to His Father that we'd all be one. That we'd be one just like Jesus and His Father were one.

Just how "one" were Jesus and His Father? Well, the Bible is completely clear that Jesus is God (the "fullness of the godhead" dwelt in Jesus) and the Father is God.

That's pretty close -- they're both God! But then Jesus prays that all His followers will be one just as much "one" as He and His Father.

Alright -- so we "followers of Jesus Christ" are supposed to be really, really close. Since the Father loves the Son, then I suppose the followers of Jesus are supposed to love one another the same way the Father and the Son love each other. How "one" are the followers of Jesus Christ? How well are we demonstrating the closeness of our love? How affectionate are the Christians in our community with one another?

Let's get to the bottom line: the living, breathing Christians of our community could be a lot more "affectionate". Our "oneness" could be manifested a lot more dramatically than it is.

The dry bones? That's us. People who claim to be Jesus' "followers". We need to be "connected" better than we ever have before!

If we want to see this oneness happen today, in our lives, what do we need to do? How are we ever going to "get jointed together"?

Just as in Ezekiel's vision, what was it that re-connected the dry bones into a divine "army"? It was the Wind of the Holy Spirit. As the Wind blew over the bones, the bones connected and came to life.

Now, this isn't a "trick question", but what is it that's going to "reconnect" men and women, wherever you live, into an affectionate oneness just like Jesus has with His Father?

Simply put -- as we set down our religious "differences" and follow the Presence of the Lord in the Wind of His Spirit, He'll lead us into unity.

Tell me now -- do you feel the Wind?

© 2008 by Emil Swift

"KingdomScribes" is a ministry led by Emil and Michele Swift. Their website can be found at KingdomScribes.net

The Swifts have been called by God to minister together uniquely to the Body of Christ and share a revelatory teaching ministry - gifted in the Spirit to teach mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven in a simple, direct fashion. Emil and Michele are "Kingdom Scribes" whose hearts are to raise every Believer into living and ministering in the power of the Spirit and the Word as "scribes of the Kingdom". A passion to engage the hearts, souls and spirits of their listeners has led the Swifts into a teaching style characterized by its lack of religion, rituals and church jargon. They minister in words easily understood by those to whom they speak.

Visualize Your Faith

By Dr Bob Wilkerson

Tomorrow is going to be a great day. It is evening, bedtime is not far away, and by faith, you can approach the morning through the eyes of faith. Visualization in Christianity was taboo for years, at least in the Baptist circles of my own existence. To visualize something related to the new age moment and of course, that was a deadly sin.

Today I realize visualization, picturing your desires in the minds eye can be faith. Yes, using visualization without a deep abiding faith in Jesus ability to move mountains is helpful but not scriptural. However, in Christ and because of Jesus death, resurrection and ascension to the right hand of the Father, visualization is a health expression of faith. If you walk only by sight, you are not walking in faith. When you picture in your thoughts what you request from God it is a health expression of faith.

When you pray your mind is not in neutral. Words you use in pray are pictures or frames of pictures flashing across the mind. When you ask God to heal Aunt Mary, don't you picture Aunt Mary's problems in your mind? If you will take the picture a step, further and not only picture the problem but see the problem removed. Faith is seeing the problem removed. Faith believes God has the ability to do what He will and yes praying that God's will be done in Aunt Mary's life is appropriate. However, it is also appropriate to picture Aunt Mary being completely healed. Remember it only takes faith the size of a small seed to move mountains.

Do you believe faith works? If you don't try a little faith, practice a little visualization and see what happens. God does not mind if we test His ability. Why would He mind? He doesn't mind if we test Him. Pray believing and see in your mind God's blessings on your life and you might be surprised at the results.

Dr Bob Wilkerson is author of the book, "I Will Not Be Defeated Anymore". He is dedicated to helping others recover from life altering circumstances. Dr. Bob is a motivational speaker/singer with a true life story of God's power to change any individuals life. If you would like more information go to http://www.freewebs.com/bobwilkerson

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Christians in Troubled Waters

By Dorothy K Daigle

Christians today appear to be deeply mired in troubled waters. Millions are feeling depressed, with an overwhelming sense of foreboding. If that is how you are feeling, you are not alone!

There is a reason why the inner joy of many has waxed cold. As laughter is a gift from Creator, so is joy. That is why Jesus told us to love one another as he had loved his disciples. He wanted us to find the inner peace and joy that he had.

One form of loving is compassionate giving from the heart. This gives us joy. If we are sorely lacking in peace and happiness, one of our most powerful prayers ought to be, "Father, I ask that you send someone to me who needs my help, and help me to find a way to help them." Sometimes the help that is needed is just some warm, friendly companionship. Sometimes maybe a smile and a warm greeting helps another person gain a new positive perspective on life. Maybe that's all it might take so she or he can feel, "Life is good!"

Why are so many Christians missing the boat of joyful living? It may well be because Christianity has left out the most powerful teaching of Jesus on how to gain eternal life. In Luke 10:25-28, he told us that it is by loving God, ourselves, and others with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, that we will gain eternal life. We reap the rewards of that eternal life now! Unconditional love in our hearts opens the doorway to joy, to heaven on earth, to our Father's warm, loving, heavenly Kingdom.

Many have been deluded into believing they are "saved" because Jesus died on the cross to redeem mankind. It could well be that by keeping unconditional love in his heart, on the cross, right to the very end, Jesus showed that man was capable of unconditional love--therefore, the species man should not be annihilated.

But do not be deceived! Jesus told us heaven and earth would pass away but his words would never pass away. Unconditional love in our hearts is the key that opens the door to heaven and eternal life. If you trust Jesus' words, and choose to live them, you will be safe. You will be "saved."

Blessings and warm thoughts, Dottie

Dorothy was taught by Cherokee elder and wisdom keeper, John Red Hat Duke, for over ten years in Keetoowah Cherokee spiritual ways, in Eastern philosophy, and in Judaism. She was raised Christian so she has a good working knowledge of Christianity. She became disillusioned with Christianity so she now follows no religion, but strives to walk the Red Road spiritual path according to Jesus' teachings.

She received her call from Creator in the fall of '92, and was then taught by the great prophet Elijah for four years. She was given four assurances by Creator when He called her. She was told that she was anointed by the Holy One of Israel, that she would be protected until this work was done, that Creator would go before her whenever He sent her somewhere, and that she did not have to prove herself to anyone. She is one of Creator's two prophesied witnesses. She carries wisdom of many years of living under Creator's guidance and direction.

Dorothy shares teachings of Jesus, Moses, Elijah and Cherokee elder John Red Hat Duke on the site, http://groups.msn.com/RedRoad - The high level spiritual path of the ancients, the Red Road, is taught in the book, Red Hat Speaks by Dorothy K. Daigle. It can be ordered from any bookstore.

Movements of Worship

By: Rev. J. Keith Brown, M. Div., B.S.

Vist any two churches, even if they are of the same denomination, and you will most assuradly find differences in their worship services. Even in those of the most liturgical of services, there are small nuances of differences that give each its uniqueness.

People have argued about how do do worship for ages. In our current times, it is often centered around music, interestingly enough.

But this article is not intended to jump into that argument. Instead, it is meant to discuss what I believe to be the three movements of worship. It is based on Isaiah 6. You will remember that the prophet enters the temple and come in contact with the almighty God.

The first movement we see in this text is upward, seen by the acknowledgement of God's presence by the prophet, to the singing of the angels. Our first movement of any worship, either private or corporate, must be upward...focusing on God and God alone.

The second movement is inward. Notice in this text how the prophet confesses his unworthiness. True worship will bring us to personal reflection, asking ourselves about our actions, thoughts, and attitudes in comparison to God's Word.

The third, and last, movement of worship is outward. God poses the question here in this text: Who will go? The prophet says, "Send me." The last movement of worship must be to take the love, teaching, and ministry of Christ to a hurting and lost world.

Remember, the movements of true worship, no matter where we do it, are Upward, Inward, and Outward

Rev. J. Keith Brown, M. Div., B.S., is a Christian Illusionist, Speaker, and Author. For more information, vist: http://www.keithbrown.org .