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Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Bark Tells All



As a kid I did a lot of night hunting. We always had a pack of dogs and they lived for hunting. We mostly hunted for skunks and possums, mainly because that was what was in our area. It didn't make sense to hunt for coons when there weren’t any around.

We lived on the edge of the woods and we didn't have to go far to be in hunting territory. One dog we had would go a short distance into the woods and start barking like he had something treed. After awhile we couldn't stand it any longer and would get a lantern and go see what he had. When we would get to about where we thought he was, he would start barking again. He would keep doing that going further and further until he had us deep into the woods. And then the hunting would start. He figured out how to get us out there hunting when we planned to go to bed.

I recall one night my grandfather asked me if I would like to go hunting with him. Of course I said; “I shore would.” As we got ready he told me go get two toe sacks. I didn't say anything but I thought he must think we are going to catch a lot of game tonight.

We took off and a little while we were in the middle of a turnip patch. After we filled those toe sacks full of turnips, the hunting was over and we went home. After I got over my disappointment, I got to thinking we weren't going varmint hunting at all, we was going turnip hunting.

Our hunting trips would last way into the night and we always had to get early to start farming. When you worked for a farmer he expected you there early and if you didn't show up early you didn't have a job.

When you hunt with your dogs a lot you know their voice and can tell which one of them is on a trail from way off.  Also you can tell how hot (how close) they are on the trail for their voice changes as they close in and run them up a tree or run them in the ground.

Fox hunters are very good at knowing their dogs voices, they usually go and just sit down, sometimes all night just listening to that music for that is what that baying sounds like.

Even now, when I don't hunt any more I can tell which dog is barking and if he has something treed. My wife will sometimes ask me, “Who is that barking?” and I tell her which one it is of the three dogs we have.

John 10:27 Jesus said; my sheep hear my voice and I know them, they follow me and I give them eternal life and they shall never perish.

Can you hear our great shepherd speaking? We will hear his voice if we only listen. The things of this life can drown it out if we let them, listening is a learned response that is refined by concerted, repeated action.

Three profitable steps; Listen. Hear and Obey The Great shepherd

Friday, April 29, 2011

HOW OLD IS GOD?


It is hard to know where to start to answer this question since the only clue is; HE is eternal.

We can conclude that since HE has neither beginning nor ending, meaning HE is timeless therefore ageless. HIS existence is not within the realm of time nor the substance of the physical. The word of GOD says HE is SPIRIT and the constraints of time can not have any effect on HIM.

It has been the dream of inventors for centuries to develop a perpetual motion machine. It has yet to be done and most scientists do not believe it can be done. This machine would need to develop more energy than it uses.

Wikipedia definition; Perpetual motion would be the property of a device or system which perpetually (indefinitely) produces more energy than it consumes, resulting in a net output of energy for indefinite time. In spite of very many attempts, no such device has ever been successfully constructed. The law of conservation of energy states that energy cannot be created or destroyed. This implies that no such perpetual motion machine can exist. A perpetual motion machine of the first kind, produces energy from nothing, giving the user unlimited 'free' energy. It thus violates the law of conservation of energy.

Can you imagine how it would affect the world should such a machine exist?

Everything that used power would be run by this machine.

GOD is and always has been self existent (uncreated perpetual motion) no beginning necessary. The reason it is difficult for we as humans to grasp this; is our form of existence, our concepts are anchored in time. Even our galaxy will one day not exist forever. The sun will darken, the planets will fade away. We are born, we die, time controls everything and because of this we can't comprehend an uncreated eternal state.

This can change somewhat or maybe I should say a little bit, if we become less earthly and more heavenly minded.  As we see our selves as a spirit that lives having a body and a soul, we have touched our everlasting state.

The spirit that GOD gave us, has an eternal existence, but where it will spend that final existence, depends on our acceptance of his invitation to spend eternity with HIM in heaven. GOD being fair as HE is, He allows each person to decide where they will dwell forever.

Psalms.23.6 Surely, goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever!



Thursday, April 28, 2011

HAVE ….. IT?


Bipolar Syndrome (Bipolar Disorder) is a condition in which people experience alternating highs (mania) and lows (abnormally depressed) for short or sometimes lengthy periods of time; in a way that interferes with their lives.

When ever I feel bad, or mess up, or do to well, or get caught, or don’t get caught, I either get too happy or am depressed or nothing happens which leads me to feel better or worse or doesn’t do nothing at all unless I help it in one direction or another or leave it alone while it gets better or worse on it’s own without interference from me or someone else who is either more helpful or not, but still have some Pseudoscience irrationality that some would find with or without merit based upon their own personality which has been altered by philosophy imposed upon them by association with someone as confused as themselves.

But doctor do you think I have “it”? Perhaps you should run some tests to find out why or why I do not do or don’t do what I want to do? If I did do it, it only stands to reason I wouldn't have done what I did if I didn’t have “it”!

I knew someone who did something like I did and they said they had “it”.

Please tell me what “it” is. Is there any cure for” it”? Is there a pill or a combination of pills that will cure “it”? And so “it” goes, leading to emptiness of soul.

When reason fails us, excuses become the order of the day, somehow to make sense of this existence. Does “it” exist, absolutely. Does it need to be dealt with? Most certainty. While some pill may help, the one that must be taken regularly is the “gos-pill” and start with;

Psalms 139 O LORD,
You have searched me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I rise up; You understand my thought from afar.

You scrutinize my path and my lying down, and are intimately acquainted with all my ways.

Even before there is a word on my tongue, Behold, O LORD, You know it all.

You have enclosed me behind and before, And laid Your hand upon me.

Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is too high, I cannot attain to it.

Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence?

If I ascend to heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there.
If I take the wings of the dawn, If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,
Even there Your hand will lead me, And Your right hand will lay hold of me.
If I say, "Surely the darkness will overwhelm me, And the light around me will be night,"
Even the darkness is not dark to You, And the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to You.
For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother's womb.
I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; And in Your book were all written The days that were ordained for me, When as yet there was not one of them.
How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them!
If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with You.
O that You would slay the wicked, O God; Depart from me, therefore, men of bloodshed.
For they speak against You wickedly, And Your enemies take Your name in vain.
Do I not hate those who hate You, O LORD? And do I not loathe those who rise up against You?
I hate them with the utmost hatred; They have become my enemies.
Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts;
And see if there be any hurtful way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way.

This begs the question; do I have some hurtful way in me? All hurt affects me in every way, spirit soul and body. GOD'S cure for that is; My child, pay attention to what I say. Listen carefully to my words. Don't lose sight of them. Let them penetrate deep into your heart, for they bring life to those who find them, and healing to their whole body - - and I might add, also to the soul and spirit.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uj0y3Y4ReU4&feature=related





Wednesday, April 27, 2011

THAT LOVING FEELING


In the sixties a group of five was formed called “The Paramours.”

After some time they were reduced to a duo and changed their name to “The Righteous Brothers.”

Now you must admit that was quite an improvement. I’m not sure how righteous they were, but as a singing duo they were as good as any that came down the pike.

They broke up and reunited a couple of times but finally stayed together until Bobby Hatfield died from a cocaine overdose just before a concert. Bill Medley is busier than ever and has fans all over the world.

One of their songs “You've lost that loving feeling” is the most played song ever, number two isn't even close.

That loving feeling is something every marriage must not only have, but must maintain or the marriage will be a failure, even if the parties remain together. It is something that requires maintenance; an effort must be put forth on the part of both parties.

Keith Krell gave this illustration; A couple was driving home from church. The wife was sitting in the front seat on the far right side. Her husband was in his usual place behind the steering wheel. Seemingly, a large gulf separated them. With lonely eyes, she looked at him and said, “Honey, do you remember when we first met, how close we used to sit to each other? You used to put your arm around me. What happened to those days?” With one hand firmly attached to the steering wheel, and the other resting on the empty seat between them, he said, “Well, I haven’t moved.” The distance was not because he had moved. A separation resulted because she had moved away. She had left her first love.

Revelation 2:1-4  1.“To the angel of the church of Ephesus write
‘These things says He who holds the seven stars in His right hand, who walks in the midst of the seven golden lamp stands: 2. “I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars; 3. and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My name’s sake and have not become weary. 4. Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.

The Greek word translated “left” (aphiemi) means “to depart, leave alone, forsake, and neglect.

Ephesians 2:4-5 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.

What was happening in Ephesus was; they were saying to the Lord. “Jesus, I don’t love You like I once did. But I’ll still come to church. I’ll still serve You. I'll still witness for You. I just don’t love You.

Perhaps this wasn’t a vocal thing, just an attitudinal thing. What had happened was they had lost that loving feeling for GOD.

Luckily for them there was a remedy for that malady, part of which was to draw near to GOD and HE would draw near to them, as James 4:8 instructs;

Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.

Make sure you still have that loving feeling, GOD hasn't moved - - it is up to the one who has moved away to draw near again.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E8QLgouqh9w&feature=related



Tuesday, April 26, 2011

BEING HUMAN


The term” hypostatic union” denotes the two aspects of the Savior Jesus Christ.

He is the God Man, both God and human. While on earth his humanity was as real as his deity. His association with Peter was on a human level, speaking to him man to man, at the same time being conscious of being God.

His humanity allowed him to experience the temptation of every potential thing that humans experience and this without sin. Jesus passed these temptations as a human who was filled with the Holy Spirit not as “THE” God. This should give us a clue as to how to walk before God in our daily walk.

What he did during his life on earth wasn’t easy. From experience I know due to the fact I willingly fail. This is so hard to accept about myself. But there are so many ways to “mess up.” I find it difficult to not find something that appeals to me. It’s the knowing what is right and not doing it that gets me.

Someone made an interesting list of things that relate to being human and I have included it here.

1. You will receive a body.
You may like it or hate it, but it will be yours for the entire period.

2. You will learn lessons.
You are enrolled in a full-time informal school called Life. Each day in this school you will have the opportunity to learn lessons. You may like the lessons or think them irrelevant and stupid.

3. There are no mistakes, only lessons.
Growth is a process of trial and error: experimentation. The "failed" experiments are as much a part of the process as the experiments that ultimately "work."

4. A lesson is repeated until learned.
A lesson will be presented to you in various forms until you have learned it. When you have learned it, you can then go on to the next lesson.

5. Learning lessons does not end.
There is no part of life that does not contain its lessons. If you are alive, there are lessons to be learned.

6. "There" is no better than "here."
When your "there" has become a "here," you will simply obtain another "there" that will again look better than "here."

7. Others are merely mirrors of you.
You cannot love or hate something about another person unless it reflects something you love or hate about yourself.

8. What you make of your life is up to you.
You have all the tools and resources you need. What you do with them is up to you. The choice is yours.

9. Life is exactly what you think it is.
You create a life that matches your beliefs and expectations.

10. Your answers lie inside you.
The answers to life's questions lie inside you. All you need to do is look, listen, and trust.

11. You will forget all this.

Monday, April 25, 2011

KEYHOLE CHRISTIANITY



One door and only one, and yet its sides are two, Inside and outside, On which side are you?

Or so goes the old children’s song. Its the analogy being saved or lost; Outside lost, Inside saved.

There are many other analogies that portray the Christian experience; the whole armor of GOD being one of them. This armor is one of the keys to being a successful Christian.

Ephesians 6:10-18 provides us with instructions on how to arm ourselves for successful combat within the spiritual world.

If we are not careful we will be caught up by the colorful language Paul uses. It will cause us not to understand that Paul is telling us to reinforce ourselves both psychologically and spiritually to do spiritual battle.

One of the things soldiers would do in WW1 was to take off their helmet and compromise their protection, the reason for that was the helmet was uncomfortable and a burden to wear. This act caused the death of many troops.

In a similar way the Christian solider can compromise his armor by letting down and not staying in full battle mode.

It is possible to be on the inside of the door and still have a desire for what’s on the other.

Symptoms of this is the peeping through the keyhole and lusting for what is seen on the other side. Then try to create the same conditions on the inside as they have seen on the outside. One mild example of this is addressed by James.

James 3:19 And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right!

Luke 9:62 But Jesus told him, "Anyone who puts a hand to the plow and then looks back is not fit for the Kingdom of God."

A quote by Monsignor Dennis Clark, Ph.D.
“Jesus understood this part of our human experience very well, this mid-course weariness that tempts us to look backward instead of forward, which blinds us to the new and deeper joys, and possibilities that are within our reach here and now, this mid-course weariness that tempts us to give up, abandon our “plough,” and walk away.” (To have a keyhole moment)

Don’t look back. It will only freeze you in place and embitter your soul. Instead, look forward, and look deep. You’ll be amazed at what’s waiting there for you!

The moral is; keep looking forward for looking through the keyhole can become an addiction with dire results.   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cJvmhKScfiw



Saturday, April 23, 2011

HAD ENOUGH?


When I was fifteen the WW2 was in full force, and I could get a job almost anywhere due to the shortage of workers.

When I was seventeen, the war was over, and I couldn’t get a job anywhere. Millions of defense workers were out of work; millions of service men were being mustard out, and looking for their old jobs back.

My uncle had got a job on a thousand acre ranch with a ten room house. My uncle’s brother-in-law (“Shorty”) lived there with him, and my cousin Billy and I moved in also, so there were three of us boys there, ready and willing to work but no jobs were available.

For me, times were difficult and I had enough of the hard times. It reminds me of the hardships many Americans are living through today.

The hopes these people in the USA had during the last elections have been dashed and the feeling you have, when you believe you have done everything you can do, and it is to no avail, is demeaning and depressive. I experienced that in my younger days, and still remember the all encompassing distress brought about by it.

The leadership in Washington is being brought into question and soon we will have a chance to change the direction we are headed in.

My friend, Shorty was older and stronger than cousin Billy, but they got in a fight and after whacking Billy pretty good, Shorty asked Billy if he had enough. Billy responded “Enough what?” as if he didn’t know what he was talking about. Well Shorty, started to explain it to him further. I felt Billy had enough, so I broke it up. Billy had got whipped, and was mad about it but after a few days peace prevailed once more.

Elections hopefully show if the American people have had enough. Some will say “Enough what?” while others will say, “Yes it’s enough.”

California and Nevada, Pelosi, Reid, and Boxer have been reelected, and it shows that “the people” are satisfied with the present administration’s agenda of, “Spend your way out of this critical circumstance.”

Still, whichever way things go it will still be a happy day for the redeemed, for Jesus is alive. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lo8rcwe0Zm4&feature=related



MY BAG



I would like for you to visualize a large paper bag to put groceries in and put on it the words “all things that pertain to my Christianity.”

Now again, visualize everything concerning your Christianity is in the bag, salvation, your ministry gift, your prayer life and so on. If you have been a Christian very long your bag should be full, but with everything jammed together it is hard to keep all things in view.

Now see yourself emptying your bag on the bed and separating each thing into its proper category, making some sense out of your Christian experience, the big picture. This is a large task and may take some time but in the end it will put order in your life.

2 Timothy 2:15 Do your best (study) to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

Don’t confuse the gift of salvation with your works or service.

Never allow failings to separate you from GOD’S love, don’t let your thought of your future in heaven keeps you from living your life to the fullest today. All things can work together when they are in order.

There is something I heard and that was; GOD views the world through your eyes, and while I know GOD isn’t limited to my eyes, the indwelling HOLY SPIRIT is viewing the same things that I see. He is able to guide me through the maze of life’s confusion.

Partner up with HIM and know HE is the helper sent from heaven to you.

People stumble through life trying to get some help from drugs or deviant life styles, but they were not designed to function that way.

Jesus knew that we Christians would screw up our Christian life without some help from above, so the HOLY SPIRIT is his answer to that problem, but He is limited by a disordered life.

Paul was telling Timothy keep his life in order, to do the do and don’t do the don’t do.

Think about it, there are absolutely no don’t do that you can’t do without and be better off without it. The pain of being denied a don’t do will soon subside if you let it.

Perhaps we need a second bag labeled non Christian and as we sort through the stuff on the bed there may be some things that needs to be put in that bag, and left there.

Becoming spiritually minded is necessary for a successful life. Think like this; when I go to bed, the SPIRIT of GOD goes to bed, when I get up, HE gets up, when I work, He works. But when I sin he draws the line and separation happens and fellowship is broken. It is called grieving the Holy Spirit.

There is nothing sadder than those who love one another not to be on speaking terms. There is one who sticks closer than a brother and that is the SPIRIT of Christ. Do the do.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7CICkCma74I

Friday, April 22, 2011

ON THE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN


For the most part that has been the story of my life.

I use to drive the Claremont hotel and see the members playing tennis and contented myself with the thought, “I don’t want to play tennis anyhow.

I found it hard to get acceptance among many (most) of the contractors in the same business I was in. Seems they felt they were the elitists and I was below them. I contented myself by saying, “Who needs them?”

No matter how successful and competent you are there are those who are truly inferior to you that will try to put you down. I content myself by maintaining my self-esteem and they become impregnated with impropriety in my sight.

I have experienced some of these same traits among ministerial brethren.

I have contented myself by bypassing them and going to the only one who really counts, and there I find all the acceptance I need. It is there I am no longer on the outside looking in but on the inside looking out.

It is here that peace like a river comes and floods my soul until being on the outside as some would like you to be, has no effect and is unimportant.

“Until you make your peace with who you are, you'll never be content with what you have.”

In many cases you are not who you think you are, due to the fact that others have molded you into what they wanted you to be.

The best place to look to find out who you really are is GOD’S Word for there everything is spelled out concisely. You are what God’s Word says you are, and the opinions of others are only false answers blowing in the wind.





Thursday, April 21, 2011

PRACTICE THE PRESENCE



Early in life as a born again one, I heard the expression, “Practice the presence of GOD.”

I didn’t know what that meant but thought it was a good idea.

Psalms.1:1-2 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night

Psalms.91:1-2 Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the LORD: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him.

These verses give instruction in how to begin to practice GOD’S presence. While it is true that GOD is omnipresent and we are always in HIS presence we do not always acknowledge it. The proof of this is the way we conduct ourselves, how we speak and what our motives are.

In order to do evil we must ignore HIS presence. Are you planning to sin? If so you are ignoring HIS presence? Ig-nor-ance is a word coined to mean you do not acknowledge someone’s presence and GOD doesn’t take kindly to that treatment.

Something that I have noticed is because the Spirit of God dwells within us continually, we become so used to that we fail to recognize His presence within.

As a new Christian it was easy to remember when the Spirit wasn’t indwelling me and the emptiness within, but as the time has passed the memories of those days have faded. And now we only realize he is within when He moves upon us in prayer or worship. Perhaps we should recognize Him in the same way continually and practice His presence at all times and in every way.

Quote from Bill Johnson:
"As we become faithful to host the presence of the Lord, we find a tension between two realities—that He has been given to us without measure but that we set the limits of that measure. Though all of the measurements are set up on our end of the equation, we can experience the measure of presence we are willing to jealously guard. Whatever you will jealously guard, that is the measure you will have on a consistent basis. All measurements in the Kingdom exist for us to pursue increase. The whole Kingdom is based on this principle: the faithful use of what you have been given is what qualifies you for more."

When one is baptized with the Holy Spirit they receive the fullness of the Spirit and not just a part of Him. When you turn on a light bulb it receives the fullness of the power in order to light up. It doesn’t receive all of the power just the fullness of it.

Every moment of the day we have the fullness of God dwelling in us and we must acknowledge His presence by our conduct and acting accordingly.

Another old saying says, “Practice makes perfect” so practice, practice, and practice some more,









Wednesday, April 20, 2011

HOW FAR CAN WE TRUST OUR CONSCIENCE?


This is a far greater question than I can answer, but it doesn’t hurt to think about it a little bit.

There was a lot of sorting out about the rules for Jews and Gentiles and the greatest of theologians, Paul the Apostle tried to make sense of it all.

The Jews had a great deal of trouble with the freedom the gentiles had. Even though they (the Jews) accepted Christ and gave allegiance to the New Testament Covenant they tried to include much of the Old Testament rites and rituals which in effect were contrary to the New Testament truths.

One such issue was concerning what food to eat and the preparation of it. The Gentiles would eat any thing placed before them but the Jews for their conscience sake had to be selective.

Romans 14:22-23 So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the man who does not condemn himself by what he approves. But the man who has doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.

To understand this you have to know that the conscience has been trained and responds based upon group opinion and acceptance and an inherent sense of right and wrong.

The issue before the church was how one man can eat food offered to idols without a twinge of conscience while another would be devastated by doing so. The same issues of conscience prevail today; some Christians do things my conscience rebels against.

I recall one minister who always flew first class in part because he got alcoholic beverages free.

When I was working and had extra money we would go to brunch on Sunday where they served champagne with it. It was included in the price but we always declined because of conscience sake.

There is such a thing as having an overly trained conscience where everything is wrong.

People make up all kinds of rules based upon their interpretation of the scriptures. Some regulate food where they don’t eat certain foods on certain days or seasons. The same applies to abstaining from sex during some holy days including no sex on Sunday.

The conscience is a delicate and tender thing and it would seem if you go against your conscience continually, it will finally reach the place where it is seared, harden and non-functional with all of the built in protections being voided.

A couple quotes from the story of Pinocchio; The Blue Fairy: “Now, remember, Pinocchio: be a good boy. And always let your conscience be your guide” Jiminy Cricket: (his conscience) "Well... Guess he won't need me anymore. What does an actor want with a conscience, anyway?"

A conscience that is trained by the truths in GOD’S word will always try to keep you on the straight and narrow way. But, enter in all of the interpretations of that word and it becomes something entirely different and is designed to accommodate personal preferences.

How far can you trust your conscience? Only as far as it has been trained in righteousness, and is uninhibited by the world’s sinful standards.

The Biblical standard goes farther than just right or wrong, it demands you to avoid doing anything you may think is wrong, because of the way your conscience has been trained.

If there is a moral to this story it might be; keep you conscience free from the influences of debauchery and don’t go beyond what the scripture requires of you.

A conscience that demands more of you than GOD does, will cause you to live a life of defeat and misery, with joy unknown

James 4:17 Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it.



Tuesday, April 19, 2011

HOWDY - More about MOSES


How would like to go from being a prince to being a pauper in the blink of an eye?

Then to be hunted as a criminal and have a death sentence hanging over you.

Well I was so confused I didn’t know what to do for I knew if I was caught it would have meant the end of my life. This was all because I let my temper get the best of me. When I saw that Egyptian beating that Israelite I lost it and while I didn’t mean to kill him, he was dead just the same.

So here I am, out on the desert, living with sheepherders and married with some kids. The details of what happened next are in the record but I will touch on a couple of high points.

I was out herding the sheep and I went further than usual to find some good pasture, and then I saw something I didn’t understand. A bush was burning but it didn’t burn up. It shouldn’t have taken but a few minutes but it just kept on burning.

Just when I was thinking “this beats anything I ever have seen,” GOD appeared in the mist of the bush and told me to go back to Egypt and deliver the children of Israel from Pharaoh.

Now I heard that a new Pharaoh had come to power but I knew from experience that they are all pretty much the same. After much debate, questions asked and answered, promises made and the revelation of the name of GOD. Then I was told to go and tell the children of Israel that “I AM HAS SENT ME” to deliver them.

I made one last feeble effort to get out of going by saying I can’t talk, that caused GOD to get angry, and he said go get Aaron your brother and he will speak for you.

One other thing that got my attention was GOD had me throw down my staff and it became a serpent and when I picked it up (at GOD’S command) it became a staff again. Every time things got tough I always remembered that snake and the miracle that happened.

I will defer to the record for what happened in the next days, weeks and months for the details are there except that what happened was real and lived out by real people.

There were high points like the plagues that were needed to get Pharaoh’s release of the Israelites. The crossing the Red Sea, water from the rock and one sad thing of a personal note was when I was to be replaced the LORD had to look beyond my immediate family to find a man who was strong and stable enough to lead this mass of people.

The outstanding thing about my tenure as leader was order. The setting up the different tribes, and the sacrificial system was an act of GOD, for these were a stiff-necked people that would revert to the old ways in a moment.

As with everyone my time came to an end and the burden was transferred to a proven younger man for which I am thankful.



Monday, April 18, 2011

HOWDY MY NAME IS MOSES



There was a time when my forefathers had it all. They lived in a land where they were protected from without by the Egyptian army.

We had the best land in all Egypt and prospered above all other inhabitants. The Egyptians was aware of our good fortune and were very jealous so much so they daily complained to Pharaoh.

Little by little we were put into a laborious work and our goods taken from us. They made our live a living torment but even so we continued to increase in number so much so they began to fear us. They came up with a solution for this dilemma which was to kill all the Hebrew babies that were boys.

My story is about my birth, my mother’s wit and actions that saved my life when other babies were being killed. How I became a prince as Pharaoh’s daughter’s son. How I lost that position because I killed an Egyptian, is all in the record and all the details are there for anyone to read.

I will pick up my story at that point. When I killed the Egyptian in a fit of anger I buried him in the sand thinking no one knew, but I was wrong. One of the Israelites saw me and spread the news to the others, and also it didn’t escape Pharaoh’s notice and he made plans to kill me.

While pharaoh’s daughter was fond of me Pharaoh himself didn’t care much for me and this was his opportunity to rid himself of me. I figured my only chance was to run and I didn’t stop until I ended up in Midian where I knew no one.

You must understand I had been raised as a prince with all the trimmings. I had never done any kind of work, and here I sat hungry and thirsty by the well with no means of support.

It was a squally time for it looked like things couldn’t get any worse. I wanted my servants to bring me food and prepare my bath. I wanted to ride in my chariot, and have people bow down to me.

Where were the dancing girls and the parties? I wanted my old life back

While feeling sorry for myself there were these girls who came to water their sheep at the well, but they were driven away by the other shepherds.

I was dirty and soiled but I still looked like an authority figure, so I told the shepherds to back off and let the women have access to the well, and as a gesture of good will I helped them draw out the water.

These girls father (Reuel) invited me to come to his camp and stay for awhile. We sat down and ate food I had never eaten before for it was very plain but because I was hungry it tasted pretty good.

I began to fit into the shepherd’s lifestyle and Reuel said I needed a wife so I picked out one of his daughters named Zipporah who turned out to be a so-so wife. It wasn’t long before I became the father of a boy named Gershom.  The old Pharaoh died and a new one appeared on the scene, nothing changed for the Israelites it even got worse.

The moaning and groaning was heard all the way to heaven and GOD heard them and remembered he had made some promises he needed to keep concerning Abraham’s seed.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

HOW SERIOUS SHOULD WE TAKE PRAYER?


On the surface this might seem like a strange question to ask. On the other hand one might ask themselves how they really feel about prayer.

Now of course everybody prays, is what first comes to mind, but how serious do I take prayer? Are there different levels of seriousness depending on the type of prayer? Where do I put my focus as I begin to address myself to GOD?

Regardless of the import of the petition do I realize that I am going to speak to the Almighty GOD of the universe? Well now, do I expect HIM to give ear to me and listen while I expound on the worthiness of my request? Does every utterance directed toward GOD demand my full attention as to respect, and do I honor HIM by my confidence in HIM to be responsive?

That being said; is my heart conditioned to come before such a one in a bold manner as expressed in Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore draw near with boldness unto the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy, and may find grace to help us in time of need.

Do we dare to approach HIM without preparation of heart?

Luke 11:1-4 He was praying in a certain place, and when he ceased, one of his disciples said to him, "Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples." And he said to them, "When you pray, say: ‘Father, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread; and forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive every one who is indebted to us; and lead us not into temptation ...  

Luke 1:5-6 And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.  But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you openly.”

Let me see now; I am planning to use the name of Jesus as a climax to my prayer but where does the hallowed be his name come in? Then I go to my room and shut the door that sounds like I need to give prayer my full attention. Am I expectant when I pray, if so what is the basis for that expectancy? Who does answered prayer depend upon me or GOD, or a combination of both or even something more?

1John 5:15-16 This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.

Whatever the case may be; how serious should we take prayer? As serious as you possible can, and always remembering to whom you are addressing your prayer.

Talk about being human, check out ole George. http://www.wholesomewords.org/biography/bmuller2.html



Saturday, April 16, 2011

ARE YOU IN THE BOOK?



When I got married I didn’t have any credit established, if I didn’t have the money in my pocket I couldn’t buy it.

When Hazel and I were wed we were both in the same situation, and we found ourselves in need of a refrigerator.

In those days Montgomery Wards was to us like Wal-Mart is now.  It’s where we went for many of our purchases. It was there we went and bought our first big purchase with monthly payments of about nine dollars a month. The refrigerator was big; we had ice, and a place to keep our food from spoiling. As time went on we bought other things on credit, and always paid on time until we established very good credit.

When I went into business I had to fill out credit reports with many companies in order to purchase materials and equipment. Once my credit was approved it saved me a lot of trouble being able to charge it instead of carrying a check book. There was another benefit, if you paid by the tenth of the month you got a discount.

Then came the day when I had to make a rather big purchase and I had to borrow a large amount.  I had an appointment and was met by, what you might call a pip squeak type of a person with whom I was unimpressed.

I was soon to learn he conducted himself as one with authority. As I told him what I wanted I said I would be glad to fill out a credit report because I had excellent credit and started to speak of different places where I had credit.

He reached up and got down a very large book and said it doesn’t matter where you have credit if your name isn't listed in this book you can't borrow here. I thought to myself, “You little pip squeak, who are you to talk to me like that.”

Later I learned a lesson about the authority of the Christian. To the powers of evil we may look like a pip squeak but the fact is that we have been empowered by the GOD of the universe. We can speak, and we must be respected as one so empowered.

This was the position I found myself in. This little man was in control and his word was law. In the business world that volume had great power for it was the “Dun and Bradstreet credit ratings book.”

I didn’t know what to think, as he opened the book and ran his finger down the pages. After a long pause he said, “Okay here you are,” and a moment later he handed me a page and said, “Sign here,” and the loan was made.

As I left I thought this is what it is all about, getting your name in the book and keeping your name there by keeping up your payments!

Revelation 20:15 And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

That is a sobering thought but just as if my name had not been written in the Dun and Bradstreet book I wouldn't have gotten my loan, if one’s name isn't written in the book of life they can't enter into heaven.

This is the most important decision you make, lost or saved, heaven Or hell, eternal life or death.

I am reminded of the words to an old song;

Is my name written there
On the page white and fair?
In the book of Thy kingdom,
Is my name written there?





Friday, April 15, 2011

"PLAN C”


We started out with “Plan A,” and found that due to the fact that man had been endowed with “free choice” that he failed in obedience to GOD when tempted by Satan’s agent.

Having moved on to “Plan B,” where man has been given the opportunity to return to a state of right standing before GOD.

Due to the fact that many are carte blanche rejecting GOD’S offer under “Plan B,” there has been a new plan created as a result of that action. This plan is called “Plan C,” which is the result of rejecting “Plan B.”

So where are we now?

There are a vast throng of people who are determined to live according to “Plan B,” reaping the benefits therein while even a larger group have chosen to live according to “Plan C.”

Those living according to “Plan C” can find their counterparts just prior to the flood where people were unrestrained in their conduct.

Genesis 6:5-6 The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. The LORD regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled.

One can only surmise how near “Plan C,” that people are today compared to those in the Genesis narrative.

Whatever the many motives are for being a “Plan C” individual, GOD’S attitude toward them is the same, for when they reject GOD he has no choice but to reject them.

Logic and reasoning and argument have no effect on the outcome for there is only one way and that is GOD’S way.

Proverbs 21:2 People may be right in their own eyes, but the LORD examines their heart. What is in the heart is what will condemn one.

You might ask, “Why does GOD get so uptight and reject people because of a little sinning, for most of it doesn’t hurt anyone?”

One of the many answers to that is, Sin separates GOD from man and breaks the fellowship he desires to have with His creatures. Sin blocks GOD from showing HIS love to man and that is an attack upon the very nature of GOD for it doesn’t allow HIM to be GOD.

God is the prime actor and man at best is a responder to GOD’S overtures and when the response is a rebuff then GOD, in order to be GOD, has no alternative but to respond in like kind.

Joshua said it this way; Joshua 24:15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD."

That was another way of saying chose between “Plan B,” and “Plan C” and let the chips fall where they may.



Thursday, April 14, 2011

"PLAN B”


We discovered that man didn’t do very well under “Plan A.”

There is an old saying “What you don’t know can't hurt you,” but I suspect that if you said that to Adam he would disagree.

Had he known how disobeying GOD would cause him to lose everything, I feel he wouldn't have chose to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Lets suppose that we are listening in on a conversation between Adam and Eve shortly after they were sent forth from the garden; Adam; if I knew then what I know now I would never disobeyed what GOD told us. Eve; at the time it didn’t seem to be a big deal, in fact it seemed both logical and reasonable.

So GOD’S plan today is plan “B” where we are given the opportunity once again to receive eternal life just like Adam had in the garden. All he had to do was eat of the tree of life for it was on the list of trees that it was okay to eat from.

There is one big difference between Adam in his day and ours today and the distinction needs to be made. Adam had right standing before the LORD while we don’t.

Just as Adam was made righteous by creation we are made righteous by recreation via the new birth. This being the case we have the same relationship now with GOD as Adam had in the garden. However there is also some other things we have to deal with and that is the knowledge of good and evil plus the evil (the tempter) one with his expanded abilities.

Adam only had to deal with one “Don’t” while we have seemingly have thousands of do not’s. Life is far more complicated under plan “B,” but the answer is the same as then, obey the words of GOD.

It is easy to look at Adam and say how foolish he was, it was so simple just do what he was commanded to do, but the same can be said of us today. All we have to do is obey his commandments.

Ecclesiastes 12:13 Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandment, for this is the whole [duty] of man.

What happens if we fail to follow the rules of plan ”B”, then we move on to plan ”C” this is not an approved plan by GOD, and those who choose it will pay the cost for deciding for it. We will look at it next.



Wednesday, April 13, 2011

"PLAN A”


Perhaps you have seen it on T.V.

A boss and two security guards walk into an office and the boss says to the guy behind the desk, “You are fired leave the building at once and take nothing with you.” As he hesitates the two guards take him by the arms and lead him out of the building, and remove his ID Badge. Then further instructions are given to the security force, “Do not allow this man back into the building ever under any circumstances.”

Under “Plan A,” Adam and Eve had free access to everything in the garden until they sinned, and then they were escorted from the garden with nothing except some skins for clothing which GOD gave to them.

Genesis 3:21-24 And the LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife, and clothed them. Then the LORD God said, "Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, lest he stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever"--

Therefore the LORD God sent him out from the Garden of Eden, to cultivate the ground from which he was taken. So He drove the man out; and at the east of the Garden of Eden He stationed the cherubim, and the flaming sword which turned every direction, to guard the way to the tree of life.

We notice that the Cherubim was assigned to guard access to the tree of life.

We can only presume that if Adam and Eve had eaten of the tree of life prior to eating of the tree of good and evil, the cherubim would have been placed as a guard over the access to the tree of good and evil.

A psychiatrist would have had a field day with them trying to convince them that it wasn’t their fault and they were O.K.

If anything good came out of this devastating event it was that they gained the knowledge of both good and evil not just evil.

From then down till today we retain this knowledge and the power of choice lies within we all.
Built into plan A was a failsafe “Plan B” where man was once again given the opportunity to choose life instead of death.

While man did not take advantage of all the provisions of Plan “A” we will next look at how they are fairing under “Plan B.”

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

HOWDY MY NAME IS JUDAH


I am the fourth son of Jacob and Leah. While my mother, Leah wasn’t the favored wife, nevertheless my dad Jacob visited her often at night. She had seven children by him.

Not being the first born I wasn’t in line for that which normally goes to the eldest son. Things were a little confusing around our home because we moved often. With four wives and several kids there was a lot of fighting with dad in the middle trying to keep the peace.

There was a difference in our ages with Reuben being the oldest and Benjamin the youngest. I can't say that thirteen in a family was unusual but with the different mothers, we were clans within a clan so to speak.

I had a brother named Joseph that was a favorite with dad. I and the other brothers resented him because he was too mouthy, always telling things he dreamed. This one dream was the last straw. He said in his dream all us brothers bowed down and gave praise to him as a leader over us.

Well that did it, we had enough of his foolishness, though dad ate it up and thought it was funny.

We brothers decided to kill him but later I convinced them just to sell him for a slave. We dipped his fancy coat in goat’s blood and told dad that some beast had killed him.

Things were miserable around camp because of dad’s mourning, so I decided to cut out to visit a friend of mine. While there I saw this gal named Shua and we got married.

Right off she conceived and had a son we named Er. Then she got pregnant and had a son we called Onan. Then after some time passed we had another boy we called Shelah. Er was growing up so I got him a wife named Tamar hoping that he would settle down, but he was so mean that GOD put him away for good.

In a situation like this Er’s brother Onan was supposed to marry Tamar and the first child would be Er’s child so his line would continue. Well Onan obeyed in part but in the process of having sex with her he withdrew and his seed spilled on the ground. This act ticked GOD off and he killed him.

Tamar was wondering what kind of family she had married into so I told her when Shelah was a little older he would marry her and have children. I sent her home until Shelah was considered to be a man.

Shelah wasn’t into marring his sister-in-law so I just let it slide and Tamar got tired of waiting for me to honor my word.

She found out I was going down to shear my sheep, and I would be there a few days so she dressed up like a whore and sat beside the road. My wife had died and I hadn’t had sex for some time and when I saw this harlot I couldn’t resist her.

She wanted to know how much I would give her so I said; how about a goat? She was okay with that but she wanted something of mine to keep until I sent the goat down to her. I wanted to get on with it so I gave her my signet and staff to hold until I sent her a goat.

Later I sent a servant down with the goat but he couldn’t find her so I thought, that’s her bad luck and I forgot about it. Then one day someone told me Tamar had been messing around and was pregnant.

That really upset me to the point where I said; we must kill her for her unfaithfulness. As we prepared for the execution she sent my signet and staff to me and said, “These things belong to the man who is the father of my child.” As soon as I saw them everything became clear what had happened.

Shortly after I was the father of a set of twins, two fine looking boys. I made sure I didn’t fool around with her anymore for once was enough.

Our family made many mistakes one of my brothers had sex with one of my fathers wives, this act didn’t set too well with my father or her grown sons.

After my sister was raped - - my brothers killed the men of that village and took all their goods and wives and children. Selling my brother Joseph was the low spot in our history though GOD worked it out for our good.

There is so much more that is written in the official record and you can read it there but the last thing I want to mention is father Jacobs blessing upon me as follows;

Genesis 49:8 "Judah, your brothers shall praise you; your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies; your father's sons shall bow down to you.
9 "Judah is a lion's whelp; from the prey, my son, you have gone up. He couches, he lies down as a lion, And as a lion, who dares rouse him up?
10 "The scepter shall not depart from Judah, Nor the ruler's staff from between his feet, Until Shiloh comes, And to him shall be the obedience of the peoples.
11 "He ties his foal to the vine, and his donkey's colt to the choice vine; He washes his garments in wine, and his robes in the blood of grapes.
12 "His eyes are dull from wine, and his teeth white from milk.”

I often think of these words and they have been my main stay through the years. Especially “Until Shiloh Comes!”



Monday, April 11, 2011

HOWDY MY NAME IS ESAU


Isaac prayed to the Lord for his wife Rebekah was barren. God listened to Isaac’s prayer, and she became pregnant.

Rebekah noticed that her pregnancy was unusual. She was pregnant with twins and there seemed to be an internal struggle within her.

When she passed the Beth Midrash (study hall) Jacob sought to get out. Upon passing a place of idol worship, Esau wanted to go forth.

God thereby informed Rebecca that the children she was carrying would be the forbearers of two great nations. These two children were going to be two great warriors.

One child would devote his energies to the conquest of the external world. The second child would concentrate his abilities on the conquest of the internal world. The two children were not ordinary people, but possessed excessive energies and the abundant talent and ability to mold the external world.

Interesting comments by; Rabbi Israel Chait.
His entire writing view at http://www.mesora.org/esau.html

My story is written here is somewhat abbreviated.

Genesis 25:27-28 When the boys grew up, Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the field; but Jacob was a peaceful man, living in tents. Now Isaac loved Esau, because he had a taste for game; but Rebekah loved Jacob.

Jacob and I had the same father and mother but that was the only similarities we shared. We didn’t look alike, act alike, think alike and had different value systems. Jacob was a momma’s boy while I lived among the soldiers and hunters who were a rough bunch and I fit right in. They respected me for I was Isaac’s son but beyond that I was one of them. I loved their stories about their exploits even if they were mostly lies, they fed some inner craving I was possessed by.

Jacob on the other hand liked to stay around home tending the sheep and goats and was known as Chef Jacob because he was a great cook. My cooking skills were limited to roasting on a home made spit.

It came down to the fact that dad loved me and mom loved Jacob. She was always looking out for his interest.

As we grew up Jacob made a study of me, my weaknesses and how to manipulate me. One day things went badly, the hunt was unsuccessful and I was hungry and discouraged.

Arriving at home I smelled some stew Jacob was cooking. I felt I was starving and weak so I said to him; give me some of that stew. He said, “You give me something and I’ll give you something.” Since I was the first born I had the family birthright, number one in respect and inheritance, but in that moment of weakness Jacob cheated me out of my rightful position.

When I had eaten and the realization of what I had struck me, I was sick and hated the birthright that was no longer mine. After losing or giving away my birthright I no longer had the respect of my family and the servants I once held. At first it didn’t bother me but as time went on it became a bigger issue.

I still was in line for the blessing of the father where he would restore some of the authority I had lost through my foolishness. Once again Jacob “The deceiver” cheated me out of what was mine, the blessing of father Isaac;

Then he (Isaac)blessed his son (Jacob) with the words: “And may the Lord give you of the dew of the heavens and [of] the fatness of the earth and an abundance of corn and wine. Nations shall serve you and kingdoms shall bow down to you; you shall be a master over your brothers, and your mother's sons shall bow down to you. Those who curse you shall be cursed, and those who bless you shall be blessed!”

I had lost the birthright by folly but the lost blessing of the father was through total deceit. When I realized what had happened my anger became uncontrollable and I sought to kill this tormentor.

When my father realized I could no longer stand my brother and I intended to kill him, he sent Jacob away where he would be protected from me.

It seemed that my entire family was against me and the only thing I could do to get even was to do something they were all totally against and that was to marry some of the local girls. This they hated but I didn’t care.

Being left alone I began to prosper and began to be a person of note on my own as I had been promised. Many years later I was reconciled to Jacob; my anger had abated due to time and my successes.

The rest of the details are written in the record for all to read.









Sunday, April 10, 2011

CHANGE and - - -

The theme for the last couple of years has been “Change.”

The only problem with that is no one seems to know what that means.

To the president, change means a neo-socialistic agenda whereby the redistribution of wealth (formerly known as your money) is given to all. Take it from those who have and give it to those who have not.

A pseudo cloning system where men are free but have no freedoms.

Ken Mehlman, President Bush's campaign manager in 2004 and a former chairman of the Republican National Committee, has told family and associates that he is gay. This man and many well known public figures are, ”Coming out” and proudly saying I am a homosexual.

I don’t find this objectionable for I would rather have them out in the open than hidden behind a veil of deception.

I don’t know who the authority figure was who established the opposing sides on this argument on being gay or heterosexual for that is not the real issue. The issue is those who are spiritually alive and those who are spiritually dead.

The artificial same gender sex doesn’t enter into the main argument which is whether or not you are a born again believer in JESUS CHRIST. Same gender sex is just a manifestation of spiritual death, this is a condition validated by the affirmation of being gay.

Having sex or not having sex doesn’t add to or take away from the spiritual death condition. The thing that both the gays and non gays have in common is both will suffer the same loss of eternal life.

GOD has a formulated program, right and wrong, truth and falsehood, spiritual life and death, and marriage (a one flesh relationship) is between and a man and a woman. While politicians may be coerced into passing a law making same sex marriage legal, they can’t justify this action before GOD. The genesis story is so clear no further discussion is needed here.

Some come out by their words while others come out by their actions in either case it is rejection of GOD’S grace and will not be ignored.

All sin is a repudiation of GOD’S rule upon this earth and man’s rejection of GOD’S supreme power.

While men try to cloud the issue by spouting meaningless rhetoric, when the issue comes full circle (as it must) it is always a matter of spiritual life or death, GOD says choose life and avoid the judgment.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

FACEBOOK


Many of you use Facebook as a way of communication; I still don’t have a clue as to how the format works. I know that all the sudden you have friends that you don't know.

Recently I got a new friend with a Russian name. She said she was tired and had just got some new piercing but she couldn't let me see them here but I could see them all on her video.

Well I was very sad to hear she was tired so I acknowledge her by saying, that piercing could be extreemly painful but it could have an upside.

I told her that Jesus had several piercing, and it was very painful but it was beneficial to everybody.

His piercing was in his hands and feet and a very noticeable one in his side. He also had many on his head.

I told her, I hoped she will enjoy Jesus’ piercing even though he doesn't have a video.
Http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eawq31sifYI&feature=related



Friday, April 8, 2011

HOWDY MY NAME IS JACOB


Now I know you have heard some bad things about me, some, even most are true but I’m not all bad.

Basically my problems were of a family nature. My brother and I were twins and struggled within the womb of our mother. When being birthed my brother prevailed and was born first. Although I grabbed on to his heel, and was born a minute later it didn’t count, he was the first born with all the rights that went with it.

I felt that I should have been born first and there was an inherent innate enmity between us.

As you have probably heard I tricked him into giving me the birthright, and that put me in line for the physical rights. There was another thing I desired, and that was the father’s blessing that was passed on from father to son which dealt with the things pertaining to the spiritual.

With the help of my mother I deceived my dad, and he bestowed the blessing upon me, and it was irreversible, once given, it was a done deal. When my brother found out what I had done he was upset, for I had taken all that was his legal rights.

He was mad enough to plan to kill me and he said so. Upon hearing this, my father sent me away to the land from whence we came to visit my uncle and seek a wife.

I know that I don’t please everybody but I had larger issues to deal with. On the way to Haran I decided to sack out for awhile, and as I slept I dreamed and GOD spoke to me and gave me a promise like the one he gave to Abraham.

Well as you might expect I got all excited and made a vow saying if you do what you promised then you will be my GOD and I will start to tithe.

I met some people from Haran and they told me that they knew uncle Laban.

About that time this young girl was bringing her sheep to water them at the well, and come to find out she was a cousin and the daughter of Laban. I told her who I was and planted a big kiss on her. I found out her name was Rachel and she brought me to her father. Uncle Laban sure knew how to throw a party for me and I hung around for a month and started to do some chores for him.

Laban had two daughters; one was Leah who was pretty plain while the Rachel was beautiful. I told Laban I would work for seven years for Rachel and he said okay.

Now I was pretty sneaky, but this Laban made me look like an amateur when it came to deceit. I worked the full seven years and was looking forward to claiming my bride for after all she was getting older and I didn’t want to marry an older woman.

Everything was all set and I was surely ready for the wedding. There was plenty of wine and song and I wanted my wife. I had drunk more than I should have, but at long last Laban brought me my wife and we consummated the marriage.

Next morning I woke up and looked at her, and, well, I can’t describe the feeling that went through me. The woman lying next to me, the one I had sex with, was not Rachel but Leah.

I almost passed out!! When I recovered enough to move around I headed for Laban’s tent and lit into him calling him several names. After I had ran out of steam he explained that the custom was the older sister had to marry first and the only way to get to a younger sister was to first get the older one married.

I said; why didn’t you explain that beforehand to which he replied; that is something you should have known.

Then he said; I’ll tell you what I will do, you go ahead and do your duty for her week and then you can marry Rachel if you work seven more years for me, to which I agreed.

So here I am, seven years in debt, two wives and their maids to support and Leah was pregnant, actually she kept getting pregnant because she wasn’t that ugly. But then after Judah was born she could have no more children at least for awhile.

Because Rachel couldn’t get pregnant she brought me her maid and said have sex with her and see what happens. What happened was she had two boys. Well then Leah decided she would give me her maid, Zilpah to wife and she had two sons for me. After this Leah had prayed, and she had her fifth child and then had her sixth boy. And then she had a girl and called her Dinah.

Finally Rachel conceived and produced a boy named Joseph and then she later died in childbirth, with a son named Benjamin.

I manage to out smart Laban after my debt was paid for the wives and I became very prosperous while Laban was getting poorer. This caused some hard feelings, and I decided it was time to leave.

The end of the story is that when I came there, I had little, but when I left I was rich with four wives, a dozen kids and flocks and herds. All the details are written in the record and I encourage you to read it.





Thursday, April 7, 2011

SIDE TRIPS ON THE WAY TO HEAVEN


A college student said “when you come from aliveness you always act appropriately” this was in response to some secular philosophical treatise.

John 10:10 I came that they (you) may have life and have it abundantly

1 John 2:25 And this is the promise that He has promised us, even eternal life.


John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life

John 3:14-15 even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; that whoever believes may in Him have eternal life.   (Have what?)

1 Tim 4:8 For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.

Referring back to the student’s remark when you come from aliveness you always act appropriately, sounds good!

Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

These scriptures seems to indicate that we who are born again possess aliveness, we are alive in Christ. The question is do we always act appropriately or do we take some side trips.

When speaking of the unsaved Gentiles they were characterized in  Ephesians 4:19 and they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality, for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness.

Can a Christian manifest some of the same traits?

Galatians 5:16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.
(Do what? And what doesn’t happen?)

Galatians 5:17 For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please.

Now even though a person is a born again Christian there is still warfare within and choices to be made. The choices come in two packages, one is the straight and narrow way.

( Isaiah.30:21 Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it.")

And the other is detours or side trips. These side trips are spelled out clearly in the scriptures and are crudely called the works of the flesh.

Galatians 5:19-21 Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: Immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of Anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you just as I have forewarned you that those who practice such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

There are others such as adultery, fornication, greed, lying, stealing, taking advantage of the brethren and a host of others. Any and all these things are side trips, detours from the straight and narrow.

What occurs on these side trips?

Well first off fellowship with GOD is interrupted and you find you have a new friend, the prince of Darkness. This happens even though you plan to return to the Straight and narrow (I’m just fooling around, I don’t intend to make this my practice).

The scripture indicates that you either walk after the flesh or walk after the spirit, there are no other options.

We would like to think that there must be some middle ground where we can mess around “little bit” without causing a breech in fellowship, like you know a loop hole.

1 Corinthians 5:6 Your boasting is not good. Don't you know that a little yeast works through the whole batch of dough? So also a little messing around can mess up your fellowship and testimony.


Galatians 5:24 Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

Ask yourself “What did that say”?  Is that a “gonna do” or “already done” issue?

The last question for myself is; “Does GOD take this business more seriously than I do?”

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

HOWDY MY NAME IS LOT

Lot is a boy's name that is of Hebrew origin, and the meaning of Lot is "veil" wrap closely, envelop.

In today’s language it might mean to cover up or hide.

Having been born into a family of idolaters I wasn’t really a worshiper of the true GOD but for convenience sake I pretended to be religious.

Sadly my father died. Grandpa Terah took me in and we moved up north to Haran. We did pretty well there and uncle Abram got rich with many servants and animals.

Just when things were going good the one true GOD spoke to Abram and told him to go south and made him many promises. I decided it would be best for me to go with him for safeties sake.

Off we went and stopped in Shechem. We were settled in and then came the famine. So we packed up, moved again, and we went to Egypt where we received favorable treatment.

While we were in Egypt something happened to Abram, he began to be afraid that because his wife, Sarai was pretty and he feared someone would kill him and take her. He pretended that she was his sister and the ruler took her into his palace. GOD then brought a plague upon Pharaoh. When he found why the plague had fallen upon him, he sent us away. I must say that was embarrassing to get run out of the country.

Well it was back to Bethel and the rains came and the grass grew. Both I and Abram had flocks that grew so big that in order to keep the peace we had to separate. He told me to choose where I wanted to go and he would go the other way. I choose the better land and did very well, so well that I moved into the city of Sodom. While I didn’t approve of the way the sodomites conducted themselves I seemed to fit in okay.

Then one day we were attacked and the city was over run, robbed and both people and goods were taken. When Abram heard about me being captured he followed and whipped these robbers and returned everything to the people.

Well I was glad that I got my stuff back and everything returned to normal until a strange event took place which changed me forever.

Unbeknownst to me Abram had been entertaining some angels who took on the appearance of men. They told Abram the cities Sodom and Gomorra were going to be destroyed and all who were in it including me.

Abram started to negotiate with the angels saying the righteous shouldn’t be destroyed because of the evil in those cities, whereupon the angels agreed that if there were ten righteous people there they would spare the cities.

As it turned out that there weren’t even ten righteous people in these cities.

I was sitting at the city gate when these angels came and I insisted they come to my house and stay. Later that evening I was outside and the men of the city came and demanded that I bring the men (angels) out so they could have sex with them as was their custom. When I refused they attack me and the angels pulled me into the house. I had two married daughters that had not yet taken up residence with their husbands and were still virgins that I offered to the men for sexual purposes but they refused for they lusted after the men.

The angels caused blindness to come upon the men and they could not see, this broke they proposed party, but suddenly time was of the essence. The angels urged us to flee from the city for destruction was upon us.

This was a moment of decision for me. The last thing I wanted to do was to leave all my goods and the lifestyle I had grown accustom to but I opted to get out while I could, from the way the angels described it, it was time to go. I went to my son-in-laws and tried to get them to flee but they just ridiculed me.

The angels took me my wife and daughters by the hand and led us out saying “don’t look back.” My wife had to have one last look and she was turned into a salt lick.

The destruction was so complete that there is nothing left to indicate the cities ever existed.

I ended up living in a cave with my two girls and they were worried that I wouldn’t have any descendents so they come up with this plan. The oldest one got me drunk and had sex with me and the next night the youngest got me drunk and she had sex with me. As it happened both were pregnant and had boys. It appeared that I had both sons and grandsons from this event. The girls named them, one was called Moab and the other was Ben-Ammi.

Like any father I was proud of my boys. From them came two nations the Moabites and the Ammonites. Later these tribes were a throne-in the-flesh of the Israelites. Time was passing and I faded from the scene.

They didn’t even make mention of my demise but years later it was said of me; “But God also rescued Lot out of Sodom because he was a righteous man who was sick of the shameful immorality of the wicked people around him.” Strange as it seems even though I felt this way I continued to live there until forced to leave.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

HUNGERING AND THIRSTING

The world around is like a blotter that sucks the spiritual life from me.
I grow faint from weakness as my strength evaporates away.

Forced to feed upon that which cannot restore the vitality that languishes.

Who is this that treats me so, that troubles my soul?

Both good and bad drain my essence, my peace is lost and numbness prevails. I hunger and thirst for my belly is empty and my throat is dry,

I scarcely can cry, I just sigh why, oh why?

I dare not expose my desperate needs, for others see me as a tower they can flee to for refuge.

My soul is quieted by the din and noise and the demands of others far worse than I.
My seeking is for that, which cannot satisfy, yet runs me dry, why, oh why.

This life is beyond my control, yet I still exist, I grow old, I fold.

In soul and body the problem lies, that which they can't meet with their vacant epiphanies. The cry comes from deeper, deeper, I must look deeper for my emptiness must be filled.

My hunger and thirst for righteousness does not suffice for that is not where the problem resides.
My hunger desires to obtain the realty the world is not willing to nor can it provide.

I want to leave this valley of emptiness where I express my agony to my GOD why, oh why?

Then two words echo back that changes it all “My Child.”

These words transcend my demanding state and take me to a place of “blessed quietness,” and “shall be in you” becomes actuality. I experience fellowship with the Father and the Son! And more, I am satiated with Oneness and this Oneness begins to overflow.

Then it becomes clear; I must only give from my overflow and not from myself for my resources are limited at best.

Because the needs are great I must return often to this place of quietness and experience the overflow, being satiated again and again with HIS Oneness. Never shall I know the hunger and thirsting again for I now stay filled with overflow.

2 kings 3:17 You will see neither wind nor rain, says the LORD, but this valley will be filled with water. You will have plenty for yourselves and your cattle and other animals.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Remaking the World

M. Crow quote: “Technological innovation sustains a fundamental tension of civilization, the tension between humanity’s quests for more control over nature and the future, and our equally strong desire for stability and predictability in the present.”

After reading this statement all I could say was, “Wow!” The most important part of this equation is how “inevitable creative innovation” is going to affect our spirituality in the future. Creativity is thinking up new things.

Innovation is doing new things, the one thing that is for sure is what’s happening can’t be ignored forever. Technology is here to stay, the question is whether we can handle the exposure to it or not. I stumble across words that are common to those of higher education and haven’t got a clue as to what they mean. To read an article I must have a dictionary at hand.

For example; “Ideation is the creative process of generating, developing, and communicating new ideas, where an idea is understood as a basic element of thought that can be visual, concrete, or abstract. Ideation is all stages of a thought cycle, from innovation, to development, to actualization. As such, it is an essential part of the design process, both in education and practice.”

The direction that ideation is taken, is key to the result attained and can be manipulated for the philosophical bent purposes.

Sustainability within the church of tomorrow is totally dependent on the sustainability in the church today. Since there is no single definition of the body of Christ (the church) this fragmentation weakens the resolve of the body.

The sustainability of the church requires us to deny; exploitation of those within by pretenders who are without. Further the maintaining of “The old time religion” (starting at the cross) must reject the communication of a new Christ. The message cannot change only the method of presentation

The change wrought by technological advance continually remakes society, and this transformational process is on the one hand central to the dynamic that is commonly labeled “progress.  Yet on the other is a source of continual destabilization and dislocation as experienced by individuals, communities, institutions, nations, and cultures.

What is happening today may be defined, but few can grasped the effect it will have on tomorrow. It causes one to sense that much of the future is built on the sand and not on the rock.

My hope for the church is based upon fact and that fact is though all may change - - Jesus Christ is, the same yesterday, today, and forever. All may change but Jesus never and those who believe on Him will survive whatever may come.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zXLDoTZSIM&feature=related
 

Sunday, April 3, 2011

VUNERABILITY


Many scriptures were fulfilled when Jesus came to earth. One thing to remember is, when the Christ child was born, Christ left heaven. It was His spirit that entered that body during the life span of that body.


While the limitations of a body were upon Him, he also felt the emotions of his humanity. This was something GOD had never before experienced. His desire for purity in all things while in His body, as the scripture says, was eating him up because of the evil all around him.

Jesus faced this evil in every form, yet He defeated it in His daily life.

John 14:30 "I don't have much more time to talk to you, because the ruler of this world approaches. He has no power over me."

Just as Jesus had a passion for righteousness, so also do those who are the children of GOD.

Psalms 69:9 I am on fire with passion for your house; and the hard things which are said about you have come on me.


John 2:17 His disciples remembered that it is written: “Zeal for your house will consume me."

A person’s desire for, and the pursuit of, spiritual things, can leave them vulnerable to being used and taken advantage of by evil men. In those moments, weakness to yielding is present.

What is often misunderstood is exactly who these people are. I propose that they are those, accepted by many, people of Apostolic stature.

These are people who have been taken captive by Satan to do his good pleasure. They claim to have great power with GOD, and are able to whip people into a frenzy, not unlike the prophets of Baal, who then delude themselves into thinking something has happened. Actually, all that occurred was a time of hysteria, brought on passion for reality.

Were the prophets of Baal sincere while shouting and mutilating themselves? You can be sure of that, but was the one true GOD their motivation?

2 Corinthians 11:13 These people are false apostles. They are deceitful workers who disguise themselves as apostles of Christ.

They declare themselves to be apostles of GOD when in reality they have been deceived and have learned from the great deceiver, himself, how to deceive others.

They will make all kinds of claims but can’t deliver. They know and understand the passion of true believers and use that desire for the manifestation of GOD to deceive and control them. They will have them do outrageous things like cackling like chickens and barking like dogs and then they tell them “This is GOD,” and the foolish ones believe it.

What kind of Holy Spirit do they have? Scripture tells us we will speak with tongues, but where is the barking like a dog found? They are exalted by the power they have over people and feel edified by the process. Puck says, “What fools ye mortals be?” He could have gone farther and said “how easy it is for these false teachers to fool a Christian.”

Without zeal, we become passive and too demure. However, with great passion, our senses are weakened and subject to futile influence. When this happens it is time to “snap to!” Common sense will tell let us know that it is illusion without spiritual substance.

So where does this leave us? At this point we need to get our heads on straight and stop being made as merchandise.

One such deceiver recently was so brazen he shouted out come on lets get a million dollar offering tonight. He must have had great faith for there were only a few hundred people there, and their pockets had already been picked each night. each night. So skillful are these hypes, that the scriptures are used to control crowds and create illusions where there is no reality.

These types of preachers have the power to make themselves invisible - to actually disappear before our eyes. This special anointing comes upon them when the money dries up. When there is no more money there is no more “them.” For that is what their gospel is all about - self enrichment.

The scripture defines them in
2Peter. 2:17 These people are as useless as dried-up springs or as mist blown away by the wind. They are doomed to blackest darkness.

Matthew.7:22-23 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.

2Peter 2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.


2Peter 2:2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.


2Peter 2:3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingers not, and their damnation slumbers not.

These are real people, playing a part in a play. Pretending to be something they are not! As actors often “become” person they are portraying, they no longer know identify with their former selves.

In the 1950’s, I became acquainted with several people known as the suede- shoe bunch. These salesmen could sell anything, and were defined by their ability to deceive. The art of deception was their forté. I see the same spirit in play in some Christian meetings today.

We are told to covet the best gifts! In this case the best gift is the Discerning of spirits.

As we walk among these pretenders it is most urgent to be “wise as serpents and harmless as doves.” We need to note that they are among us but are not of us.




Saturday, April 2, 2011

HOWDY MY NAME IS ISAAC


I lived back in the days when we only used one name. If you had to have two names you were very unimportant and non exclusive.

My dad was about 100 years old and my mom was around 75 when I was born. The record reads that the Lord visited Sarah (my dad visited her also) and I got my start though I had to do some growing before I was ready to make the scene.

When I was 8 days old I got the surprised of my life. There was a crowd of people there and I received the mark of the covenant GOD made with me before I was born. I must say that everyone really enjoyed this except me although; I am reminded of the event every day sometimes severally.

The next trauma I suffered was when dad told mom you have to wean that boy; he is getting too old for that which he is doing and it is getting embarrassing. The day finally came and I got kicked out of mom’s tent and moved into the men’s tent. When it happened dad held a great feast and I heard some of the men say; it’s about time”.

My step mom and her boy (Ishmael) used to make fun of me to the point where dad ran them off, but since the boy was Abraham’s son, GOD said he would bless him and he would become a mighty man. Now as for me, I hate to admit it but I was kinda a mama’s boy and she would baby me whenever she got the chance. Now dad wanted me to be a little more like Ishmael but I just wasn’t into rough housing and such.

This one time I got in the middle of a situation that I didn’t exactly understand because it was between GOD and my dad. GOD, once again decided to test my dad and He told dad to fry my hide upon an altar as a sacrifice. So off we went and after three days we came to the place where GOD told dad to go to. We built an altar and got ready to sacrifice, all the time I was thinking I sure will be glad when this is over and we go home.

The altar was built and the wood was ready for the fire but I was wondering if dad hadn’t forgot something so I asked; where is the sacrifice? Well the next thing I knew I was all tied up and was laying on top of the wood. Dad had a knife in his hand and I was getting pretty worried because things were not looking very good from where I was laying.

Just before I was filleted an angel said stop! The test is over, and for my part I was glad of it. The angel told dad he had done fine and if he would look around he would see a ram stuck in a thicket and to use him for the sacrifice.

Then the angel told dad that he was going to be blessed and some more stuff, but as for me I decided right there that I didn’t care to be part of any more tests.

I don’t know about you but I’m worn out from just thinking about this so I will have to take a break for awhile.