Archive | August 2016

Music Impacts Our Soul

The Lord has been teaching me and opening my understanding about our spirit man. As I put the study together I wanted to share a video with you.

The video I am sharing was done in 2013. As my regular readers know, I am a musician. To me, music is truly an art and a gift from God.  Many people think if they hit a few notes or strum a few chords, that is music. Not me. To me, music has to be melodic. It must have a flow, a message and be pleasing to the ear.

So when I found this video I was reminded how David danced unto the Lord. How praise in music magnifies our Lord. And how music is medicine for the soul. Remember when King Saul was troubled by evil spirits he would call David to play music? Music does impact our soul.

Thought I would share this. This song will lift you up and remind you that indeed, God is in control. The first time I watched this I was hooked. The music, the praise is awesome. The second time I watched I observed the people. Strangers. The third time I noticed the police, traffic lights, and even some spectators knew the song and sang along.

So enjoy. Here is the link. Clicking the link will take you away from our site to YouTube. If you would rather copy and paste the URL then I have provided that as well. I call the video the Hezekiah Video.

Hezekiah Video

Until next time.

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Authority With Compassion

I always thought I was a compassionate person. If someone had a need and I could help, I would. But the Lord showed me my compassion was tempered. I always thought compassion was a sorrow or pity for someone because of their misfortune. But compassion is defined as a mix of love and sorrow for another’s misfortune.

My compassion was tempered in that I felt sorrow and I would then help. So I thought I was compassionate. But compassion by definition, includes love. And I truly struggle with the word love when it comes to other people. I don’t mean care about I mean genuine love for people, strangers or distant friends.

When you think how God so loved the world that he gave his Son. Then I think about the people I say I love, what have I given to them? I am not a huggy lovey person, I am technically minded. I do not see much value in snuggling, I am sorry.

But when I look at compassion in a business sense or in the work of the ministry, that gets my attention. Every field or area I have been involved in God has always put me in a leadership role. I am not boasting. But now I see what God was trying to teach me. Like Paul said 2 Corinthians 11:1, bear with me in my folly, I ask you.

I don’t like to lose. So I would push and do everything I could to win, except cheat – I hate cheaters (figuratively). So I would push, encourage and even help my team carry the load so we would win. But I didn’t see the people as people, as individuals, I saw us as a team and I was leading our team.

If someone on the team struggled I would give extra help so the team would win but second time around, I did not want that person on my team. So I had compassion on the person to help, but I lacked love to have them again on the team. Now I see the thrill, excitement and motivation that person must have experienced and by my not inviting them on the team again, I blew it.

So many of the blogs I read I am amazed how much people want to talk about themselves. I don’t quite “get it”. I ask myself, is there anyone on this planet that has such an interesting life that I would want to read about them every day? Don’t get me wrong. Some of the people write about their experiences and how they overcame situations and I truly admire them and their accomplishments and enjoy their blogs. They use their blog as a tool or resource to help others. And some struggle with decisions and life in general so they write about their daily issues looking for guidance. I know that feeling.

But the Lord showed me I need to spend time learning about people’s strengths not focus on their weaknesses. Just because a friend, family member or person on your team struggles in one area, find out what they like. What they excel at. Or what they want to learn about. Work with them in those areas and not only will you have sorrow for another’s misfortune, but by helping them find where they excel, you show love.

Which brings me to Mark 9 and our wonderful Lord Jesus Christ. You see, Jesus had a similar situation. His team tried to help someone and they failed. Jesus didn’t kick them off the team he told them why they failed so they would learn what to correct and how to correct it.

Mark 9:17-29 KJV  “And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit;
[18] And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not.
[19] He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him unto me.
[20] And they brought him unto him: and when he saw him, straightway the spirit tare him; and he fell on the ground, and wallowed foaming.
[21] And he asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child.
[22] And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us.
[23] Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.
[24] And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.
[25] When Jesus saw that the people came running together, he rebuked the foul spirit, saying unto him, Thou dumb and deaf spirit, I charge thee, come out of him, and enter no more into him.
[26] And the spirit cried, and rent him sore, and came out of him: and he was as one dead; insomuch that many said, He is dead.
[27] But Jesus took him by the hand, and lifted him up; and he arose.
[28] And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out?
[29] And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.”

Until next time.

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Authority And Power

What does authority mean? By definition authority is the legal power or right to command or to act: to rule; power.

Parents have authority or legal right and power to command their children.  This power and legal right comes from God. God gave this authority, power, legal right to all parents. Many parents have quoted to their children Ephesians 6:1 KJV  “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.” Notice the words in the Lord?

Technically, a government or state has no legal right or authority over children? Why? Because God established the family first, before any governmental body was ever established. Look at
Genesis 1:27-28 KJV  “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
[28] And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

God blessed them (Adam and Eve) and God said to them….

Some people teach when Adam and Eve sinned they lost all their power and authority. In Genesis 3:16 God told Eve her desire would be to her husband and he shall rule over thee. Eve was now subject to her husband’s rule. But what if a woman did not marry? And notice Eve was subject to her husband, not all men.

Genesis 3:17-19 God never tells Adam or Eve they lost their authority. Eve lost part of her authority and God told Adam the ground was now cursed and he would have to work hard all of his life, in sweat and work till he dies.

When you look at the word authority, what do you see? Author  –  ity. Author is defined as one who produces or creates or brings into being. So when we see verses like – God is not the author of confusion  ( 1 Corinthians 14:33 ), we learn God did not create or bring into being or produce confusion. If God did not create or make confusion, where does it come from?

We also learn in Hebrews 5:9, speaking of Jesus Christ we are told Jesus became the author of eternal salvation. And in Hebrews 12:1,2 we are told Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith. So Jesus, as author, created or brought into being, eternal salvation and our faith.

It is no surprise then that the Old Testament and New Testament mention authority 37 times and all but 2 of these are in the New Testament. So 35 times authority is addressed in the New Testament and 25 of those 35 times are mentioned in the four Gospels. The Gospels is where Jesus establishes himself as the long awaited Jewish Messiah and explains his authority. The other 10 verses in the New Testament mentioning authority open our understanding.

Look at 1 Corinthians 15:12-26 KJV

“Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?
[13] But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:
[14] And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.
[15] Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.
[16] For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised:
[17] And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.
[18] Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.
[19] If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.
[20] But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.
[21] For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.
[22] For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
[23] But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.
[24] Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.
[25] For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.
[26] The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.”

So what power and authority do we believers have today and who or what do we have power and authority over? We will look at that next time.

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Who Did Them?

Remember in our post  Your Starting Point we said:
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“Remember when Jesus was baptized? After Jesus was baptized  the Holy Ghost came upon him (a dove was seen) and a voice from heaven was heard (God the Father). Then Jesus’s life changed, he started his earthly ministry at about 30 years old.

We don’t read much about the life of Jesus before his baptism. But we do know Jesus was about 30 years old when he was baptized by John the Baptist. We also know Jesus’s ministry was about 3 1/2 years and then they crucified Jesus. The gospel ‘s focus is on the ministry, death, burial and resurrection of Jesus.”
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Let me give you something to think about and study over the weekend.
The miracles Jesus did when he was physically here in earth – did he do them as God manifest in the flesh or did God the Holy Spirit do them through Jesus?

Let me give you a starting point.

Matthew 12:28 KJV  “But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.”

Have a great weekend.
Until next time.

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God Chose To Reveal Evil

As many of you, I too have been hearing people speak about the warning signs of the last days. Believers are warning other believers and warning unbelievers. Hopefully, people will heed the warnings.

We do not read much about Satan in the Old Testament. Actually, he is mentioned in only 4 of the 39 Old Testament books. He is mentioned as Satan and he is mentioned 18 times in those 4 books and 14 of those are in the book of Job. Yes, he is mentioned as Lucifer but only once in Isaiah 14:12. After Lucifer fell he is now known as Satan.

Isaiah 14:12-24 KJV  “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
[13] For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
[14] I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
[15] Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.
[16] They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms;
[17] That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners?
[18] All the kings of the nations, even all of them, lie in glory, every one in his own house.
[19] But thou art cast out of thy grave like an abominable branch, and as the raiment of those that are slain, thrust through with a sword, that go down to the stones of the pit; as a carcase trodden under feet.
[20] Thou shalt not be joined with them in burial, because thou hast destroyed thy land, and slain thy people: the seed of evildoers shall never be renowned.
[21] Prepare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers; that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities.
[22] For I will rise up against them, saith the Lord of hosts, and cut off from Babylon the name, and remnant, and son, and nephew, saith the Lord .
[23] I will also make it a possession for the bittern, and pools of water: and I will sweep it with the besom of destruction, saith the Lord of hosts.
[24] The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand:”

Scripture is clear, there were three archangels Michael,  Gabriel and Lucifer and Lucifer rebelled against God and he took one third of the angels with him. This is not a post about angels though.

Interestingly we see Satan mentioned in 4 Old Testament books but when it comes to the New Testament,  Satan is mentioned in 14 of the 27 books. About half of the New Testament mentions Satan.

So if the Jewish people wanted to know about Satan, they had Job’s experiences, Zechariah mentioned Satan twice, David once and God mentions it was Satan that provoked King David to sin in 1 Chronicles 21:1 KJV  “And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.”

Why do you think God mentioned Satan in only 4 books out of 39 Old Testament books and in 14 books of 27 New Testament books? Jesus mentions Satan 15 times! And Paul? Paul mentions Satan 11 times. Then he is mentioned in Acts 5 and several times in Revelation.

Clearly God opens our understanding to a spiritual realm in the New Testament. But there are two verses that stood out to me today. One, God tells us he does as he thought. Look at Isaiah 14:24 KJV
“The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand:”

And God was pleased with Job after Satan attacked Job, why?
Job 2:10 KJV “But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.”
Because after everything Job went through, he watched what he said. He guarded his lips. Look at how many times lips, mouth, speech are mentioned in Proverbs 16.

Look at  Proverbs 16:23-30 KJV
“The heart of the wise teacheth his mouth, and addeth learning to his lips.
[24] Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.
[25] There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.
[26] He that laboureth laboureth for himself; for his mouth craveth it of him.
[27] An ungodly man diggeth up evil: and in his lips there is as a burning fire.
[28] A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends.
[29] A violent man enticeth his neighbour, and leadeth him into the way that is not good.
[30] He shutteth his eyes to devise froward things: moving his lips he bringeth evil to pass.”

We may watch what we say when things are going smooth but what about when trouble or problems come? And if thinking and speaking good can bring good then thinking and speaking evil things can bring evil.

Clearly, the New Testament brings mankind into a new knowledge of God that was pretty much hidden in the Old Testament because Satan is only mentioned in 4 of the 39 books. God wanted us to know who Satan is, how he works, how we can defeat his attacks and remove the blinders we had on toward spiritual attacks. So God mentions Satan by name in 14 of the 27 New Testament books.

How can you fight against an enemy you do not see, know or understand?

Ephesians 6:10-18 KJV  “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
[11] Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
[12] For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places .
[13] Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
[14] Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
[15] And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
[16] Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
[17] And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
[18] Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;”

Until next time.

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Parents

Something we all have in common? Parents. We all have a mother and a father. Male and female came together and God played a roll by giving the breath of life. You were not born from two women or two men. Neither were you born from a man dressing up to look like a woman or a woman dressing up to look like a man.

Not all parents are good parents. Some parents abandon their children, others beat their children, some even kill their children. And some give their children up out of love. Look at Moses. His parents gave him up out of love. Samuel’s  mother gave him up at about 12 years old so Samuel would sit under Eli the priest and learn about God.

According to the dictionary, parent’s duties are to maintain, protect and educate their children. But God requires more from parents. Proverbs 22:6 KJV
“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

Train means to bring them along, to draw them by act or persuasion. To form by instruction or practice. It is not just giving a list of dos and don’ts. Children often mimic their parents. Children will speak the way their parents speak, act the way their parents act or do things they have seen or heard their parents have done. Even sin the sins of their parents.

The word parents only appears in the New Testament and about 21 times. In the Old Testament God addresses parents as mother and father.

We know the first “institution” God established is the family – Adam and Eve. When God established the family, before the fall, God gave instructions to both Adam and Eve as one family unit:

~ Be fruitful
~ Multiply
~ Replenish the earth
~ Subdue it ( the earth )
~ Have dominion (rule & authority) over
a) the fish of the sea
b) the fowl of the air
c) every living thing moving on the earth

Genesis 1:26-28 KJV  “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
[27] So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
[28] And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

After the fall the instructions to male and female were altered.
Genesis 3:16-19 KJV  “Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.
[17] And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
[18] Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
[19] In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art , and unto dust shalt thou return.”

Adam and Eve then had children and became a mother and father. And as Malachi tells us, God is our Father
Malachi 2:10 KJV  “Have we not all one father? hath not one God created us? why do we deal treacherously every man against his brother, by profaning the covenant of our fathers?”

We also know Satan is a father. And Jesus made it clear there is more than just earthly parents. John 8:42-47 KJV
“Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me.
[43] Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.
[44] Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
[45] And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not.
[46] Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?
[47] He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.”

We have a duty to teach and train our children in God’s ways and to educate, protect and provide for our children. And as much as we sow into our children determines their path and direction through life. I know God can not lie. I also know when children grow up and go out on their own, more often than not, they have this new sense of freedom. Many times they make decisions that may not be the best decisions. But ask yourself, how did your parents respond to your poor decisions? God, as our Heavenly Father is always there to help us if we ask.

Remember, what you sow, you reap parents. If you do not sow quality time with your children growing up, don’t expect them to spend time with you when they are grown.

As many of my regular readers know, I did not have a father growing up. He left my mother for other women and if I saw him 5 times in my life, that is a lot. I asked God one day, how can I understand you as my heavenly Father when I don’t know what a father is? God showed me Psalm 68:5 KJV  “A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.” I cling to that verse.

Parents make mistakes and are not perfect. But know this, your children are watching you and they are paying attention, even if you are not.

Until next time.

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Saw this photo and thought it was appropriate.

What Are The Blessings Of Abraham

What is the blessing of Abraham? Scripture clearly says the blessing of Abraham comes “on” the Gentiles. We know Abraham believed God and God counted Abraham’s believing him (his faith) for righteousness.

Remember, the law was not given yet. The 10 Commandments did not exist yet. So after Adam sinned, how did the people become righteous? We know God made a flood and saved only Noah and his family. After Noah left the ark we see Babylon and Nimrod, Abraham, Lot, Sodom and Gomorrha, Isaac and Jacob, Joseph and then comes Moses.

The promise came first. The promise was 430 years  before Moses and the law. With the promise coming first, the promise is kept no matter the law was given. I think of it like being “grandfathered” in. When new rules / laws are put into effect, the rules / laws start from the day they are inacted. The only difference would be if they state in the new law it is retroactive. If the law is retroactive they can make it apply before they enacted the law. But there are still constraints. Lawyers dig out the constraints.

So when God gave the law to Moses, the law went into effect the day God gave the law to Moses to give to Israel at Mount Sinai. But before God gave Moses the law, what did those people do? We know God spoke with the people. We know God called out Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Why is this important?  Because we know the key to the church’s relationship with God is based on the promise before the law.

Paul’s letter to the Galatians points out the church is not under the law but under the promise. So after reading Galatians 3 see if you can find what the blessing to Abraham was. You find where God called Abraham in Genesis 12.

Galatians 3:1-29 KJV  “O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
[2] This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
[3] Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
[4] Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
[5] He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
[6] Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
[7] Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
[8] And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying , In thee shall all nations be blessed.
[9] So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
[10] For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
[11] But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
[12] And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.
[13] Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
[14] That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
[15] Brethren, I speak after the manner of men; Though it be but a man’s covenant, yet if it be confirmed, no man disannulleth, or addeth thereto.
[16] Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
[17] And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect.
[18] For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.
[19] Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.
[20] Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one.
[21] Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.
[22] But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
[23] But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.
[24] Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
[25] But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
[26] For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
[27] For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
[28] There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
[29] And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

Until next time.

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