God has Provided

God has never demanded anything from you that will allow you to provide salvation for yourself.

It is revealed that –

all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; Isa 64:6

So why would God demand a self-prescribed fix for you – a fix doomed to fail?
He wouldn’t!

Even the Law is not a cure for sin. Paul said,

I would not have known sin except through the law. Rom 7:7

So God’s demand for Abraham was not a sacrifice for sin. It was a method to increase the faith of Abraham.

A test is different from a temptation.
A temptation will entice you to sin.
A test will encourage you to do what is right.

A test will make you realize your dependence on God.

As Abraham said (and discovered) at his sacrifice of his own son, Isaac,

“God will provide a sheep for the burnt offering, my son,” Abraham answered. Gen 22:8

God did this for Abraham and has done this for you. Jesus is the Lamb of God provided for you. (John 1:29, 36; Acts 8:32; 1 Peter 1:19; Rev 5:6)

Abba, You have provided the way for me through Jesus! I am grateful! YES&AMEN

The Sacrifice of a Child

And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. Gen 22:10

Child sacrifice has been part of many civilizations and cultures from the earliest of time.

It would have been part of Abraham’s world and a part of worship that he and Sarah were denied, since they were childless.

It may have been they wanted children so bad they could not comprehend how others could so carelessly toss away those innocent lives to a god.

God’s calling came to Abraham and it removed him from the land of the Chaldeans to the land of the Canaanites.

In time Abraham and Sarah had a son, Isaac. For me the test of Abraham and Isaac is perhaps about Abraham’s giving of Isaac because he loves God as compared to the devotion of those pagans he left behind all those years ago; pagans that willingly gave their children to a god of wood or stone.

Then again, Abraham’s faith is in the ability of what God can do.

He concluded that God was able to raise [Isaac] up, even from the dead, from which he also received him in a figurative sense. Heb 11:19

As for God, He gave His only Son for us.

He became sin for us!
He became despised for us!
He was rejected for us!
He was cursed for us!

That we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. John 3:16-17

Today children are still sacrificed but only for the god of selfishness. Abortion is a blight on our land and it is the demise of any civilization – when it’s citizens are destroyed even before they are born.

There is forgiveness, even after abortion!

If you know someone that has had an abortion, you could minister to them or at least pray for that person. Perhaps seek the council of a pregnancy help center for advice.

Abba, children are a blessing. Help me to touch the life of a child today or the life of someone that has loss one. In Jesus name, YES&AMEN

Your Ministry

I believe everyone has something to do in ministry.

The Bible says,

He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, Eph 4:11

And

God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. 1 Cor 12:28

Sometimes the ministry is not glamorous or giving much credit.

And Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you.” Gen 22:5

Abraham and Isaac were going to worship and sacrifice to God. The young men with them were told to stay with the donkey.

On the surface it seems like Abraham is doing all the important ministry – the worshipping, the sacrifice, and the fellowship.

But the young men have just as important job. They had to watch the stuff. Perhaps Abraham set up camp and the young men are waiting on their return with a hot meal and drink.

When I was in elementary school I thought the coolest adult at school was the janitor. He got to handle all that neat trash, push garbage cans around, mop up messes, and he picked at us kids.

Now that I’m grown it’s just not as glamorous but I see how important it is.

Whatever God has you doing, whether it’s pastoring a church or handing out tracks on a sidewalk – be the best you can be at it. If it wasn’t important He wouldn’t have you doing it.

Abba, thank You for the ministry You have given me. I want to do my best in it. In Jesus name, YES&AMEN

A Message of Death – A Message of LIFE

“Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name?” Acts 5:28

Sinful living and false religions all have a major problem with the word of God – it won’t go away and it won’t be silenced.

Those that commit sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these are determined to end any message that would call their lifestyle sinful.

Of course any government official that lives contrary to the scripture will take offense when a pastor takes to the pulpit with the word of God and preaches against such sin.

The Islamic world has made a remedy for them that dare preach Jesus – death. In countries with high populations of Muslims, they are the majority and with the approval of their governing officials, they can imprison, try, and kill “infidels” that preach the Gospel of Jesus.

High populations of other religions can do the same.

What is unique about pure Christianity is it preaches life, not death! Of course in the message there is the condemnation and death of all that sin,

For the wages of sin is death! Rom 6:23

But the same message is tempered with

the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Rom 6:23

It is not a message of purely condemnation of a lifestyle or belief – it is THE MESSAGE OF SALVATION!

Abba, Your name is life. Your way is life. Though the world may choose death, I choose to tell them about Life. In Jesus name, YES&AMEN

Do Not Preach Jesus!

You may have seen the news on what the city government of Houston is doing.

Some local pastors have been issued subpoena’s to turn over certain sermons about homosexuality and may mention Houston’s openly gay mayor. Of course it is the buzz on Facebook and Twitter.

Houston area pastor’s and minister’s across the state are telling the government has absolutely no reason to bully congregations who are speaking out about what they believe. It’s none of the government’s business.

It seems this started with a new bill that has been introduced that will, among other things, allow men who identify as women to use the restrooms of their choice – and vice versa.

Of course the church would be against that. What person in their right mind wouldn’t be?

But silencing opponents that preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Word of God is not a new thing. It happened in the early days of the church when Peter and John preached in the name of Jesus. In that case the religious leaders caught the apostles,

and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. Acts 4:18

But it was too late! The message had been given and

many of those who heard the word believed; and the number of the men came to be about five thousand. Acts 4:4

That’s the fear of government officials, kings, presidents, senators, congressmen, mayors, despots, tyrants, and dictators – loosing their power and ruling ability to a Higher Power!

They fear the preaching of the Word of God. It convicts of sin and presents the only redemption available to mankind.

Peter said it best.

Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. Acts 4:12

The name of JESUS!

Abba, in Jesus’ name, give the pastor’s and minister’s the boldness to speak Your word! YES&AMEN

Trees

I love trees!

But about eight years ago a storm and straight wind pushed several over around our acreage, including the top of one pine that landed on the house. It was at that time Linda said she wanted every tree cut that could fall on the house.

That task was finally started and finished over the past few days, with the last few trees cut yesterday evening. Fourteen trees in all.

Now had all these been big majestic oaks or a bunch of fruit trees, I would be sad. But every tree was a pine, some as tall as fifty or sixty feet. Pines don’t give a lot of shade and needles and cones fall every where so I don’t count it as a great loss.

You know trees are mentioned throughout the Bible, beginning with the Tree of Life as well as the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Noah made an ark from wood cut from trees. Daniel interpreted a dream about a tree that was cut down but the stump remained.

The Psalmist says that anyone that reads and meditates on God’s word,

He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper. Ps 1:3

It is written how the trees rejoice and praise God.

Then all the trees of the woods will rejoice before the Lord. Ps 96:12

And the Lord Jesus both cursed a fig tree and was later hung on a tree.

Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”), Gal 3:13

What a sad day it must have been for that tree – that the Creator was killed upon it. But what a day for you to rejoice and praise God because Jesus did die upon that tree and three days later was resurrected.

Abba, Thank You for the sacrifice given on my behalf so that I may no longer live under the curse. In Jesus name, YES&AMEN

Lesson from an Ant

I have finally started cutting firewood. I’m just a tad behind my regular schedule of doing it, which usually starts in May/June so that it is well seasoned by the first fire!

It’s not that I’m lazy, I just haven’t felt like doing it, which may be another way of saying that I’ve been a bit lazy. I like to tell others that I’m not lazy – I’m just slow!

I’m also behind on redoing our bathroom. I bought a surround shower/tub and the wall board back in March. I haven’t done a thing with any of it.

I have not learned the lesson from an ant.

Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, which, having no captain, overseer or ruler, provides her supplies in the summer, and gathers her food in the harvest. How long will you slumber, O sluggard? Prov 6:6-9

I could make excuses about not getting anything done. I’m the praise leader and pastor of my church. So I’m responsible for getting the music and the sermons for Wednesday’s and Sunday’s, along with their presentation on multimedia. I also work full-time at two Christian radio stations.
Are you impressed?
Neither is my fireplace!

I’m not the only person that has this problem with laziness. I see it very often on Sunday’s.

In fact, I have some tell me that they wanted to come to church but just couldn’t get out of bed or just couldn’t get moving or just couldn’t get ready in time.

I’ll bet every excuse disappeared by work time Monday morning!

I will share some advice to those that just can’t make it to church and with those that just can’t get up to cut firewood – put one foot in front of the other and the body will follow!

Abba, I want to be more productive in these last days. In Jesus name, YES&AMEN