Faces Bear Witness

Monday, August 31, 2015, 8:11 a.m. – The Lord Jesus put in mind the song “What the Lord Says.” Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Isaiah 3:8-15 (NASB).

Spiritually speaking, I believe there are four distinct classifications of people in the world, which we can learn about by reading the Parable of the Sower in Matthew 13. First there are those who don’t believe in Jesus Christ at all, and who have never made a profession of faith in Christ, some of whom have heard the gospel preached, and some who haven’t, but those who haven’t are still without excuse based on the teachings of Romans 1:18-32. Then, there are those who have made a profession of faith in Christ, but it is surface only. Their faith never really took root, i.e. there is no transformation of the Spirit of God present in their lives but only a shallow declaration of faith which has little foundation in the teachings of the gospel in scripture, so they, as well, are not true believers in Jesus Christ.

Then, there are those who genuinely believed in Jesus Christ as Lord and as Savior of their lives. They were transformed of the Spirit of God in spiritual birth, they were crucified with Christ to sin, and were resurrected with Christ to new lives in Christ Jesus, “created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Eph. 4:24). Yet, at some time in their spiritual walks, they drifted away from their pure devotion to Jesus Christ, and they got caught up in the ways of the world again, and so they became unfruitful in their Christian lives, and they are thus in need of revival via repentance and renewed faith in Jesus Christ as their only Lord. And, lastly, there are those who are walking in faithful obedience to their Lord, though not necessarily in sinless perfection. These are those who conduct their lives according to the Spirit of God, and are no longer living their lives to please their sinful flesh. They are bearing fruit for the kingdom of heaven in their own lives and in the lives of others.

They Have Fallen (vv. 8-9)

For Jerusalem has stumbled and Judah has fallen,
Because their speech and their actions are against the Lord,
To rebel against His glorious presence.
The expression of their faces bears witness against them,
And they display their sin like Sodom;
They do not even conceal it.
Woe to them!
For they have brought evil on themselves.

Jerusalem today is heavenly Jerusalem, the church, the body of Christ, so today this would be speaking of particular believers in Jesus Christ who have fallen back into sin, and have forsaken their first love. Although they once were committed to following their Lord in faithful obedience, they have since been deceived by the trappings of the world, and have drifted away from their pure devotion to Christ. Although they are in genuine relationship with Jesus Christ, the words they sometimes speak, and the actions they sometimes take are against the Lord, and are against his divine will and purposes for their lives.

As well, this sin of theirs is willful rebellion against God, i.e. they knowingly and willfully are going against what they know is wrong. Some will conceal their behavior via lies and deception, while others seem to have no shame at all, and openly display their rebellion against God. Yet, even if they attempt to conceal their sin, their faces (countenance) witness against them. Yet, we must be careful here that we don’t misjudge people merely on the basis of countenance. We could be wrong. Yet, many who are habitual sinners, in particular, although they try to hide their sin, reveal what they are doing through their faces, and those who know them well can usually tell when they are not telling the truth.

Well With Them (v. 10)

Say to the righteous that it will go well with them,
For they will eat the fruit of their actions.

The righteous in this context, I believe, is speaking of those who live righteously before God, and who are not merely righteous positionally through faith in Jesus Christ. Yet, I don’t believe this is a promise of health, wealth and prosperity. When we read about the life of Jesus, and we read the writings of his NT apostles, we soon learn that the faithful are not promised loss of hardship, or of tribulation, persecution, and trials, etc. In fact, we are taught that we are destined for them, and that we can expect to be hated, persecuted, abandoned, mistreated, beaten and even killed for our faith and testimonies for Jesus Christ. Yet, we have the promise and the hope of God’s spiritual protection over our lives, of his continued presence with us, and of his unending love, grace, mercy, help, comfort, strength and encouragement to help us in our time of need, to get us through these difficult times, and to bring us safely into his heavenly kingdom. What will go well for us is that we will bear spiritual fruit (outgrowth, produce) for God’s eternal kingdom, both in our own lives, and then in the lives of others whose lives have been touched by ours.

Those Who Guide You (vv. 11-15)

Woe to the wicked! It will go badly with him,
For what he deserves will be done to him.
O My people! Their oppressors are children,
And women rule over them.
O My people! Those who guide you lead you astray
And confuse the direction of your paths.

The Lord arises to contend,
And stands to judge the people.
The Lord enters into judgment with the elders and princes of His people,
“It is you who have devoured the vineyard;
The plunder of the poor is in your houses.
“What do you mean by crushing My people
And grinding the face of the poor?”
Declares the Lord God of hosts.

The reason so many believers in Christ have fallen into sin, and have remained there, or the reason there are so many false confessions of faith in Jesus Christ, I believe, is the shortage of spiritually mature male leaders in our churches. So many leaders have fallen prey to the lies of Satan and have gone off to follow humans and humanistic philosophy and marketing schemes and even mysticism and myths instead of following Jesus Christ and his word. And, a large reason so many of them have become so vulnerable to following these lies, I believe, is perhaps to ease their own consciences, because so many of them have fallen into serious sin and have become entangled by it all over again. For instance, there is an alarming number of pastors, particularly here in America, who are addicted to pornography and/or who have engaged themselves in some type of extramarital relationships.

Yet, it isn’t just that leadership is spiritually absent, or that they have fallen into sin themselves, but that they are leading their people in the wrong direction. So many church leaders have ceased to even speak of sin or judgment, and many are teaching that repentance and obedience to Christ are not required by God. They distort the character of God to fit their own lifestyles, and so they have no fear of God anymore. They also teach that God is pleased with us no matter what we do, even if we are steeped in sin, and in fact, that he smiles upon us even when we are willfully sinning against him. They teach that all you have to do is pray a prayer to “receive” Jesus Christ, and that once you pray that prayer you are now saved and guaranteed eternal life, no matter how badly you sin from this point on. Their gospel is more like a free license for lasciviousness as it requires no death to sin, no obedience to God’s commands (his word), and no fear of the Lord.

Yet, if we read the words of Jesus Christ, and those of his NT apostles, we will learn that to believe in Jesus Christ means that we die with Christ to sin, and that we are resurrected with Christ to new lives in him, “created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Eph. 4:24; 1 Pet. 2:24). It means we no longer live to please ourselves, but we live to please our Lord who gave his life up for us so we could be set free from slavery to sin (2 Co. 5:15). It means we no longer conduct our lives according to our sinful flesh, but we now live our lives according to (in agreement with and in the power of) the Spirit of God (Ro. 8:1-14). It also means if we say we have fellowship with God, but we persist in conducting our lives according to our sinful flesh, that we are liars. It means, too, that if we continue in walking in agreement with our flesh, we will die, but if by the Spirit we put to death the deeds of the flesh, we will live. Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness.

So, we need to stop trusting in humans and what many of them are teaching us, and we need to start exercising spiritual discernment in testing everything we hear against the gospel of Jesus Christ as he taught it, and as his apostles taught it. Not everyone who professes the name of Jesus Christ is genuinely saved. Though I believe scripture indicates that Christians can still sin, and that Christians can even fall for deception, forsake their Lord, tolerate false teaching, drift away from their pure devotion to their Lord, become spiritually apathetic and worldly, and have need to repent and to be spiritually revived, this should never serve as security to those who willfully continue in sin after having made a profession of Christ as Savior of their lives, for scripture also teaches that if we persist in living for our flesh, and not for the Lord, that we will die, and we don’t have eternal life. We should never take lightly what Jesus Christ did in dying on the cross for our sins, or think God no longer cares if we sin or not. He cares! And, he disciplines those he loves.

So, instead of walking in your own flesh, walk in freedom from slavery to sin. Instead of following after lies, follow what’s true. Instead of doing what you know is wrong, choose to do what is right. Instead of living in defeat, walk in victory. Instead of trusting in the words of humans, test what you hear, know what God’s word teaches, and put your trust in the Lord and in his word. Instead of caving into peer pressure, or falling prey to discouragement when trials come your way to test your faith, rest in the Lord, look to him for your help, and stop looking to humans to save you. And, instead of giving up in defeat when humans persecute you or when they abandon you, keep pressing on in the strength the Lord gives you, don’t fear what humans may do to you, and know God will carry you through.

What the Lord Says / An Original Work

February 24, 2014 / Based off Isaiah 43:1-44:5

This is what the Lord says to you:
Fear not, for I have chosen you.
I have summoned you by your name.
You are mine. I died, you to save.

When you go through your trials, so deep,
I will be with you; you will not sink.
You are so precious always to me.
Trust in your Lord, Savior and King.

This is what the Lord says to you:
He who gave salvation to you;
Who delivered you from your sin;
Takes your burdens now upon Him:

Forget the former things of your life.
Give of your heart not now up to strife.
See all the new things I have for you.
Walk in vict’ry. Trust in what’s true.

This is what the Lord says to you:
He who made you; who will help you:
Do not fear what humans may do.
Walk in freedom. Follow what’s true.

Drink of my Spirit given for you.
Trust in my mercy, for I love you.
I have a plan for all of your life.
Follow my ways. Do what is right.

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Walk in His Paths

Sunday, August 30, 2015, 8:00 a.m. – The Lord Jesus put in mind the song “Songs in the Night.” Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Isaiah 2:1-5 (NASB).

The Mountain (vv. 1-2)

The word which Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.

Now it will come about that
In the last days
The mountain of the house of the Lord
Will be established as the chief of the mountains,
And will be raised above the hills;
And all the nations will stream to it.

This passage of scripture is speaking of what will take place in the “last days.” In comparing scripture with scripture, it would appear that the ‘last days’ began with Jesus Christ – with his birth, life, ministry, death, and resurrection, and then continuing on into the life of the church. All references to the ‘last days’ in the prophecies and teachings of scripture, thus, refer to the Messianic age and the church age before the return of Christ.

In verse three it mentions the “mountain of the Lord” and “the house of the God of Jacob.” Then it says “He will teach us his ways…” Grammatically speaking, the “he” refers back to the subjects “mountain” and “house.” As well, the “he” refers back to the “law” that will go out from Zion and the “word of the Lord” that will go out from Jerusalem. And, in keeping with the understanding that we are speaking of the Messianic era here, the “temple” of God is both Jesus Christ (See Jn. 2:19-21) and it is his church, the body of Christ (See 2 Co. 6:16). Zion is a reference to the church (See Heb. 12:22), as well as is Jerusalem, for physical Jerusalem is of Hagar, the slave woman, but we are of the free woman, and we, Christ’s followers, are the children of promise, the heavenly Jerusalem (See Gal. 4:21-31).

So, understanding all of what we just discovered above, we can read this passage as thus: In the last days, i.e. in the days of the Messiah and his church, Jesus Christ will be established as superior to all other gods, and things that are worshiped, and also places of worship (Ref: mountains as high places of worship). He will be exalted above the heavens (See Heb. 7:26). In fact, “God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name…” (See Ph. 2:9). And, all nations will stream (run) to him – to his gospel of salvation – people from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues (cf. Rev. 7:9-10).

His Ways (v. 3)

And many peoples will come and say,
“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
To the house of the God of Jacob;
That He may teach us concerning His ways
And that we may walk in His paths.”
For the law will go forth from Zion
And the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

Many people will say, “Come, let us go to Jesus Christ. He will teach us his ways…” He (the law) will go out from the church, the Body of Christ. He (the Word) will go out from the church.

After Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins, and was resurrected from the dead, after numerous days, and following many appearances to his followers, he ascended back to heaven where he sits at the right hand of the Father. Then, he sent his Holy Spirit to indwell and to empower his disciples, i.e. those who were and are followers of Jesus Christ. Thus, those who believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior of their lives have God living within them in the person of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, Christ is the temple of God, and we, being his body, are also the temple of God, with Christ as our head.

Before Jesus Christ left this earth, on the basis that all authority in heaven and on earth had been given him, he commissioned his followers to go and to make disciples of Christ of people of all nations, baptizing and teaching them to obey all that Jesus Christ had commanded them. Many of his apostles were given direct revelation from God/Jesus, which they wrote down, and which we now have as the New Testament scriptures for the church today. As well, since we have Jesus Christ living within us, in the person of the Spirit, the living Word dwells within each one of us who follow Jesus Christ with our lives. Jesus also told his followers that they were the light of the world and the salt of the earth, and that when the Holy Spirit came upon them that they would be his witnesses to the ends of the earth. So, we are among those who are calling people to Jesus Christ, and who are leading others to be taught in Jesus’ ways, to follow Jesus Christ, and to walk in his paths.

So, what are his ways? What are his paths in which we must walk? What is the law that is going out from Zion (the church)? The Law is the Word of Christ. It is his instructions given to us. It is the Word he gave to his apostles to write down for us, which we now have recorded in the New Testament books of the Bible. It is the gospel of our salvation. And, in his Word, and in his gospel, we learn his ways and his paths which we are to follow.

Jesus said that if anyone would come after him, he must deny self, take up his cross daily (die daily to sin and self) and follow (obey) Christ. He said if we hold on to our old lives (of living for sin and self) we will lose them for eternity, but if we lose our lives (die to sin), we will gain eternal life (Lu. 9:23-25). His apostles taught the same thing. Paul wrote that Jesus died that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us who walk (conduct our lives) according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. He said that if we walk (live our lives) according to our sinful flesh, we will die, but if by the Spirit we put to death the deeds of the flesh, we will live (Ro. 8:1-14). Peter said that Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness (1 Pet. 2:24). And, Paul said that Jesus died that we might no longer live for ourselves, but for him who gave himself up for us (2 Co. 5:15).

All throughout the New Testament we are taught that belief in Jesus Christ means death to sin and living to righteousness; that it means forsaking our former lives of sin, being transformed in heart and mind of the Spirit of God, and being given new lives in the Spirit, “created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (See: Eph. 4:17-24). All throughout the New Testament we are instructed in holy living, and are told that we are called to be holy, which means to be separate from (different from; unlike) the world, because we are becoming like Jesus Christ. God’s grace is not freedom from having to obey Jesus Christ. It is not freedom from keeping the Word of the Lord. God’s grace, which brings salvation, teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions and desires, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives while we wait for Jesus’ return (Tit. 2:11-14). So, to walk in the ways of the Lord means to obey Christ and his word, in the power and strength and wisdom of the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, and not in our own flesh.

He Will Judge (v. 4)

And He will judge between the nations,
And will render decisions for many peoples;
And they will hammer their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks.
Nation will not lift up sword against nation,
And never again will they learn war.

Jesus Christ will judge between nations at the end of days, and wars will cease. Since we read in Revelation that God/Christ will judge the people of this earth during the time called the Tribulation, and there will definitely be war during this time, this must be referring to the time of the end when Christ will judge, and people will repent of their evil ways, although not all will, but that is why they will discard their weapons of war. I don’t think, though, that we will come to that time where people will never again learn war, until Jesus returns and he rules and reigns on the earth, as will his saints with him.

In the Light (v. 5)

Come, house of Jacob, and let us walk in the light of the Lord.

So, the call here is to come to faith in Jesus Christ or to return to the Lord Jesus if you have wandered off from your pure devotion to him to follow the gods of this world. We do this through repentance (turning from sin) and via turning to follow our Lord in faithful obedience, though not necessarily in sinless perfection, yet never to use “imperfect” as an excuse for willful sin. We are to be taught by the Lord Jesus his ways, so that we can walk (conduct our lives) in his paths. We do this through time spent in the study of his word each day, in prayer, in seeking his face, and in allowing the Holy Spirit of God to speak God’s words to our hearts. Yet, we must be receptive to what the Lord has to say to us, and we must walk in obedience to what we have learned, i.e. we must be doers of the word and not hearers only. The more we obey our Lord, the more of himself he reveals to us, and the more he shows us all that he has for us.

Then, we must take the word of God out to the people of the world, and be the light of the world and the salt of the earth, and be our Lord’s servants and witnesses in sharing the gospel of salvation with the world who needs the Savior. We must not spend the rest of our lives living for ourselves, entertaining and being entertained. This is not to say we can’t enjoy life, or that games or fun are forbidden, but they should not be central to our lives, for our lives are not our own to be lived how we want, for we were bought with the price of Jesus’ blood shed on the cross for our sins.

We are to honor and glorify God with our lives. We should certainly not allow ourselves to be involved in sinful behavior or to permit ourselves to be entertained by others’ sinful behavior. We should examine all that we do, and all that we take into our minds to see if it is dishonoring to God, either because of the activities themselves, or by way of the time and devotion given to them, especially in contrast to the time given to our Lord, to his word, to prayer and to service to him and to others. Basically, if we truly see ourselves as no longer our own, but the Lord’s, we will want to please him in all that we do and are and speak.

So, “Come, let us walk in the light (truth, holiness and righteousness) of Jesus Christ our Lord.” Let us be taught in his ways, and let us walk (conduct our lives) in his paths.

Songs in the Night / An Original Work / December 18, 2013

“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God,
And the other prisoners were listening to them.” Acts 16:25 NIV ‘84

Lord, I praise You forevermore.
You, my Savior, I now adore.
Hope in heaven awaiting me,
Because You died at Calvary.

I have been forgiven,
And I’m bound for heaven.
Jesus set me free from
All my sin, I say.
I will praise Him always!

Lord, I love You for all You’ve done:
Overcame death, my vict’ry won!
Jesus saved me, and now I’m free!
I rejoice in His love for me.

I will walk in vict’ry!
My sin is but hist’ry!
I am free to please Him
With my life today.
I will love Him always!

Lord, I thank You for giving me
A new life bought at Calvary.
Loving Jesus, I meet with Him.
Tender mercies now flow within.

Lord, I am so thankful;
Through my Lord, I’m able
To sit at His table;
Fellowship with Him.
I will thank Him always!

Wake Up!

This is a message to “Wake up” from our spiritual slumber, to rise from the dead, to strengthen what remains and is about to die, to remember what we have received and heard from God, to obey it, and to repent of our sins, and Christ will shine on us. The Lord gave me this very solemn tune. As I listen to it, I can hear my Savior weeping over all our sins while he continues to call us back to him in humility, surrender and obedience to his commands.

Wake Up! / An Original Work / November 25, 2011

Based off Ephesians 5:1-21; Revelation 3:1-6

Wake up, sleeper,
Rise from the dead.
Your God awaits
You to do what
He says to you.
Be not conformed
To your selfish will.
Trust in the Lord.
Do what He says.
He will give you victory.
Do not walk in
Darkness; come into
The light of love.

Listen to your
Savior calling
You to obey
All His teachings.
Repent of your
Sin, and Christ will
Shine His love on you.
He waits patiently
For you to
Heed His whispers to your heart.
Will you hasten
To obey Him;
Not from Him depart?

Live your life from
This day forward,
Walking in His
Love and mercy.
Let Him cleanse you
Of all your sins.
Dwell with Him today.
Do not insult
God’s grace to you.
Do not make light of your sin.
Let the light of
His truth come and
Free you from within.

An Unfaithful City

Saturday, August 29, 2015, 6:00 a.m. – The Lord Jesus put in mind the song “Wait!” Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Isaiah 1:21-31 (NASB).

A Harlot

How the faithful city has become a harlot,
She who was full of justice!
Righteousness once lodged in her,
But now murderers.
Your silver has become dross,
Your drink diluted with water.
Your rulers are rebels
And companions of thieves;
Everyone loves a bribe
And chases after rewards.
They do not defend the orphan,
Nor does the widow’s plea come before them.

The faithful city turned harlot being spoken of here is Jerusalem, which was the holy city prior to Jesus Christ’s crucifixion, resurrection and ascension into heaven. Now the city of Jerusalem in the land of Israel corresponds to Hagar, “because she is in slavery with her children. But, the Jerusalem that is above is free…” (See: Gal. 4:21-31). In other words, the physical city of Jerusalem is no different from any other city. The holy city is no longer a physical city, but is a spiritual one, i.e. it is the Jerusalem from above. And, it is comprised of those who are followers (disciples) of Jesus Christ, i.e. it is the church, the body of Christ, but not to be confused with the institutional church, which is of human origin.

Many of God’s once faithful people have become harlots in that they have left their “first love,” and have gone off to run after the gods of men. I don’t know about the church in other countries, but I do know that the vast majority of today’s church here in America has become one with the world and is following humans and humanistic and even pagan philosophy in place of their pure devotion to Jesus Christ. They easily believe whatever sounds good to their ears without checking it out to make sure it is true. Much of the church has united with a Satanic and evil government, and promotes government worship within the meetings of the church. Much of the gatherings of the church are geared toward entertaining the world, so that the world will feel comfortable and at home in the gatherings of the church, and thus they have diluted and/or twisted the gospel message and the character of Jesus Christ in order to make them more appealing and acceptable to the world. Thus, they often discard as rubbish those who are truly following Jesus Christ.

So many Christians, in blindly believing their government leaders and the government-controlled media, thus, have inadvertently supported the murdering of innocents and even the killing of those who are Christ’s followers and servants of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We can’t trust our government leaders or their media, because most of their stories are lies, cleverly disguised as truth. Our government in the USA, in concert with her “other lover,” i.e. the New World Order ‘beast,’ trumps up charges on innocent civilians for crimes they have committed or else they completely stage news events using paid actors and actresses, or those who have also bowed to the beast and are partners with them in their fabrications and orchestrated “crisis” situations. Our government and their allies are the world’s terrorist organizations. The US government is the Taliban, Al Qaida and ISIS. These are all creations of our government (+ N.W.O.), and they are trained and supported by them.

Obama and the Pope are strong voices for this New World Order by bullying or manipulating the people and the governments of this world, and the church, into uniting with the New World Order ‘beast.’ The Iranian nuclear deal is not really about curbing Iran’s nuclear ambitions, as the US accuses Iran of what they are actually doing. The real “deal” is a deal with the devil, and it is to get the people and governments (independent) of this world to comply with the New World Order in unity of mission and purpose. It is to get sovereign nations to yield their sovereignty to the New World Order and to turn against (desert) their own people, and agree to go after all dissenting voices, i.e. all who are not in unity with the New World Order. We can read about this in the book of Revelation, in the book of Daniel and in many other Biblical prophesies concerning these last days before Jesus’ return.

The Pope is trying to get the church to accept a social gospel which takes care of the poor, supposedly, but which ignores the sin nature of humans and their need for salvation from sin. He speaks of “globalized indifference” to the plight of migrants who are trying to gain entry into the E.U., but the New World Order ‘beast’ is truly the epitome of this indifference to the suffering of others in that it has been busy for some time conquering nations, taking what is not their own, destroying or confiscating the property of others, killing at will, and murdering innocents and followers of Christ, etc. The Pope, Obama and the New World Order are preaching a message of unity with the N.W.O. ‘beast,’ which means no more independent nations or national borders, and no more gospel of Jesus Christ which divides the people of this world. The pope wants to have no more divisions, but to have all people come together as one under this ‘beast.’ If we don’t bow to the beast, then we will be targeted for extinction.

The U.N. Chief is preaching the same message. He is asking for EU leaders to behave in agreement with their global obligations, which is to bow to the ‘beast.’ When he speaks of a calamity of unity, he is speaking of the problem of disunity with the New World Order ‘beast.’ They are all concerned about what divides us as a people, but most especially with regard to anything that goes against the New World Order ‘beast’ and its tyrannical one-world government and one-world religion. They are all targeting all who are not united with this beast and are calling for unity, which is also unity in deserting one’s own people and in murdering those who do not follow the beast, but who follow the Lord Jesus Christ. If we have not gotten there yet, though many have, I believe, we will soon be called upon to make a choice in who we are going to follow – the Lord Jesus Christ (our God), or the New World Order ‘beast.’ There will soon be no more riding the fence.

After That

Therefore the Lord God of hosts,
The Mighty One of Israel, declares,
“Ah, I will be relieved of My adversaries
And avenge Myself on My foes.
“I will also turn My hand against you,
And will smelt away your dross as with lye
And will remove all your alloy.
“Then I will restore your judges as at the first,
And your counselors as at the beginning;
After that you will be called the city of righteousness,
A faithful city.”

God is allowing all this to take place, for a time, or else it could not happen. Our God is absolutely sovereign over all things, and has absolute control over all people and all events in the world, and he has all power over all kings and kingdoms. I believe he is allowing these things to take place in order to bring his adulterous people back to him, to provide a catalyst for the gospel of Jesus Christ to spread throughout the world, so that many will be saved, and to purify his bride and to make her ready for the consummation of her relationship with her husband, i.e. to prepare the church, the body of Christ, for the return of her Lord (See the books of Isaiah and Revelation). As well, during this time he will judge evil, and eventually he will judge those evil people and entities which he is now using as his divine instruments of judgment against his adulterous church.

Repentant Ones

Zion will be redeemed with justice
And her repentant ones with righteousness.
But transgressors and sinners will be crushed together,
And those who forsake the Lord will come to an end.
Surely you will be ashamed of the oaks which you have desired,
And you will be embarrassed at the gardens which you have chosen.
For you will be like an oak whose leaf fades away
Or as a garden that has no water.
The strong man will become tinder,
His work also a spark.
Thus they shall both burn together
And there will be none to quench them.

God is presently calling out to his unfaithful followers, and he is confronting them with their idolatry and adulterous ways, and he is calling them to repentance and to renewed faith in him. He is also warning of judgment. Yet, he is also encouraging his faithful followers to remain strong and steadfast in faith and commitment to him, knowing that God will never leave us or forsake us, and that he will provide us with all we need to endure and to continue in him until the end. He is also warning all those who desert him, and who choose to follow after the beast, instead, that they will meet their doom. So, repent of (turn from) your sin today, and choose to follow Jesus Christ with your life from this moment on. Your future depends on it.

Wait! / An Original Work / February 8, 2014

Wait for your Lord. Be of courage.
Be strong, and take heart today.
God is always watching o’er you.
Trust Him with your life always.

Sing of your Lord. Praise His blessings.
Believe in His sovereignty.
He delivered you from your sin;
Gave you life eternally.

Rest in your Lord. Know His promise.
Beneath His wings rest secure.
Your God has a plan and purpose.
Let your faith in Him endure.

Trust in your Lord. He’ll not leave you,
Because He is faithfulness.
He will lead and guide; protect you.
In His love you can find rest.

Healing of the Nations

Thursday, August 27, 2015, 12:30 a.m. – The Lord Jesus put in mind the song “For Our Nation.” Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Revelation 22 (NASB).

Our Future (vv. 1-7)

Then he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb, in the middle of its street. On either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. There will no longer be any curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and His bond-servants will serve Him; they will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads. And there will no longer be any night; and they will not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun, because the Lord God will illumine them; and they will reign forever and ever.

And he said to me, “These words are faithful and true”; and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent His angel to show to His bond-servants the things which must soon take place.

“And behold, I am coming quickly. Blessed is he who heeds the words of the prophecy of this book.”

From what I understand of these last days’ events, God is presently calling out to his wayward church (See: Rev. 2-3), is warning them of impending judgment, is confronting them with their idolatry and spiritual adultery, and he is calling them to repent of their sins and to return to their “first love.”

Although I certainly don’t know the timing of all these things, I do know that much of what has been prophesied in this book has already begun to take place. For instance, Satan is enraged at the saints of God and is making war against those who obey God’s commandments and who hold to the testimony of Jesus (See: Rev. 12:17), but he has been doing that ever since Jesus died, was resurrected, ascended into heaven, and sent his Holy Spirit to indwell his followers and to empower them from on high to be his witnesses throughout the world; to share the message of the eternal gospel. Yet, we have seen a recent upsurge in this kind of persecution worldwide, including within the U.S.A.

And, then we have the “beast.” Although I don’t know if this beast is in its final form, it has been forming for hundreds of years. America, I believe, was founded on the premise of bringing the world ultimately under the rule of a one-world government (the All-Seeing Eye). The symbolism is all throughout our Great Seal. The United Nations was formed for this purpose, as was NATO, the Trilateral Commission, and the Council on Foreign Relations, etc. This beast has been rising for a long while. And, the U.S. government has been instrumental in leading the way for the rise of this beast (New World Order).

Our government, in concert with this “beast,” creates chaos in various nations, including within our own, so that it (they) can go into these nations and take them over, and that is what they have been doing. If you have followed world news for the past 10 years, especially, with any amount of discernment, you could not help but notice the modus operandi of this beast within these various nations: A problem is created which thus requires a solution, but the nations themselves are incapable of solving their own problems (created by the US/N.W.O.), so the “international community” is called in to “save the day,” but not really. They are there to take over, consume, destroy and kill. They are also hotly pursuing followers of Jesus Christ and are responsible for many deaths and persecutions of Christians throughout the world. The US Gov./New World Order are the world’s terrorists.

So, much of what was prophesied in Revelation 13 has already begun to take place. God is judging his wayward people already, I believe, via this New World Order. Much of the people of this earth are already under its control. It is making war against the saints of God and is conquering (overpowering) them, some through deceit and trickery, and some through persecution and death, i.e. through oppression and military strength and power. It won’t be long before this beast will truly be ruling all peoples of the earth, though I suspect much of the world is presently already under its control, although it may be ruling from behind the scenes, at present, i.e. as a shadow government.

We are being called to come out from the world’s system, and to not take its mark (impression) on our lives, and we are called to follow Jesus Christ in surrender to his will for our lives. God is allowing all these things to take place, not just to judge, but to bring his adulterous church to repentance and revival and to bring many people to faith in Jesus Christ before our Lord returns. When this time of judgment is complete, which includes the wrath of God being poured out on the earth, and on the people of the earth, and on this beast, the false prophet and the dragon, the beast and false prophet will be thrown into the lake of fire and the dragon will be bound for 1,000 years, during which time Jesus and his saints will reign over the earth. At the end of that time, the dragon will be released for a short time, but then he will be thrown into the lake of fire, as will all who worship the beast.

Then, we will have the new heaven and the new earth, for the old order of things, where we lived on an earth cursed by sin, will be done away with, and now there will be no more sin, sickness, death, sadness, pain or tears. Although Jesus Christ is our great physician, and he heals us now spiritually and emotionally and physically, and he comforts us with his love and mercy, a day is coming when we will be whole, completely healed, with no more suffering or sadness. Then we will be with Jesus face-to-face. We will never be tempted by sin again, or know the sorrow of rejection, abandonment and persecution. This is what the saints of God have to look forward to. This is our future, our hope, our salvation. Amen!

Washed Robes (vv. 8-16)

I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. And when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who showed me these things. But he *said to me, “Do not do that. I am a fellow servant of yours and of your brethren the prophets and of those who heed the words of this book. Worship God.”

And he *said to me, “Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is near. Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong; and the one who is filthy, still be filthy; and let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness; and the one who is holy, still keep himself holy.”

“Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”

Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter by the gates into the city. Outside are the dogs and the sorcerers and the immoral persons and the murderers and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying.

“I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”

The majority of today’s church, at least here in America, has fallen prey to Satan’s deceptions, and has gone the way of the world, and is following humans rather than, or over and above God. Rather than the majority of the saints of God going out into the world with the gospel of Jesus Christ, the church has invited the world into the meetings of the church, and has thus patterned its meetings in such a way as to attract the world to the “church,” but not to lead the people of this sinful world to genuine faith in Jesus Christ. Rather than confronting the world with its sin and calling the world to repentance, the church is entertaining the world, and thus has diluted and twisted the gospel to make it more appealing and acceptable to the people of the world. There is not much distinction between the church and the world anymore. The church has largely rejected Bible studies in favor of book studies, of books written by mere humans, in which scripture is neatly placed in order to give an impression that what is contained within is Biblical, but much of it is not. So, God is calling out to his church to forsake her idols and to worship God only.

The “gospel” being taught in much of today’s church is not the gospel according to Jesus and his NT apostles. It is a gospel of human origin. It teaches that God requires nothing of us other than to “believe,” although that belief is not really explained. It comes across more like an intellectual acknowledgment of Jesus and of what he did in dying for our sins, or an emotional decision to make him Savior of our lives, although many do not comprehend what that really means, either. Remember that James said that even the demons believe, and they shudder. The church has lost the fear (awe, respect and reverence) of God. They teach that we don’t have to repent of (turn from) sin, and that we don’t have to obey Jesus, and that once we pray that prayer that heaven is guaranteed to us no matter how badly we sin from that point on, and that God is pleased with us no matter what we do. But, is that what scripture teaches? No!

We read in Romans 6 that salvation means death to sin and living to righteousness; being delivered from slavery to sin so that we can become slaves (servants) of righteousness. We read in Romans 8 that Jesus died that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us who walk not according to the flesh, but who conduct our lives in agreement with the Spirit, for if we walk according to the flesh, we will die, but if by the Spirit we put to death the deeds of the flesh, we will live. We read in 1 Peter 2:24 that Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. We read in 2 Co. 5:15 that Jesus died that we might no longer live for ourselves, but for him who gave himself up for us. And, we read in 1 John 1:6 that if we claim to have fellowship with God, but we continue (persist in) walking (conducting our lives) in darkness (according to the flesh), that we are liars. In other words, faith in Jesus Christ is not just words we say, but it means death to sin and living to God.

Come (vv. 17-21)

The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who wishes take the water of life without cost.

I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.

He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming quickly.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.

Jesus is calling out to his adulterous and idolatrous church, and he is saying “Return to me.” He is calling out to the people of this sinful world, and he is saying, “Come to me, and take the free gift of the water of life.” It is free because Jesus died to purchase our salvation for us. Not one of us can keep the whole law perfectly, so not one of us can secure our own salvation. God has provided it for us as a free gift, yet “free” does not mean free to continue in sin. When he purchased our salvation, he purchased us, for us to die with him to sin and live with him to righteousness. We are called to be holy. We are commanded to obey and to repent, and to walk in Christ’s righteousness and holiness. God’s grace is not a free license to continue in sin without guilt and without remorse. His grace, which brings salvation, teaches us to say “No!” to ungodliness and worldly passions and desires, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives while we wait for Christ’s return (Tit. 2:11-14). So, if you are claiming heaven as your future, but you are living for yourself today, I pray you will turn from your sin, and you will follow Jesus Christ in surrender to his will for the rest of your days.

For Our Nation / An Original Work / September 11, 2012

Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.

Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.

Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.

Men deceiving: we’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.

Our Eyes on Jesus

4/23/12: The other day I was praying through some present situations in my life. I was feeling weary and I was losing heart over the situation, so I prayed for renewed strength. Then, I pulled out the Bible study we are doing in our ladies’ Tuesday morning Bible study, and I read Hebrews 12:2-3: “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”

Wow! That immediately spoke to my heart, and the situation I was going through, and God began to fill me with his peace and joy. Then, today, as I prayed for words to a tune the Lord had given me, he led me back to this passage of scripture, and once again he encouraged my heart to rely on his strength.

Our Eyes on Jesus / An Original Work / April 23, 2012

Based off Hebrews 12:2-13

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus.
Our faith starts and grows in Him,
Who for the joy set before Him
Endured all our sin.
Scorning the shame of the cross,
He sat down beside God above.
He was willing to die for us,
To save us, in love.

Think about the opposition
He endured from sinful men,
So when you go through life’s trials,
You stay strong within.
Knowing all He went through for us
Helps us not grow weak of heart;
Not grow weary; don’t give up;
And not from Him depart.

In your struggle against sin’s ways,
Resist not to shed your blood.
Have you forgotten the words
God spoke to us in love?
“My child, don’t ignore it when
The Lord corrects you; do faint not,
Because the Lord disciplines those
That He loves, of God.”

God rebukes us all for our good;
Share with Him in holiness.
It produces a harvest of
God’s own righteousness.
Therefore, strengthen all within you
That is weak and might give way.
Stand firm in the faith God gives you;
Trust Him and obey.

All Things New

Tuesday, August 25, 2015, 7:13 p.m. – The Lord Jesus put in mind the song “Songs in the Night.” Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Revelation 21:1-8 (NASB).

The First Things (vv. 1-4)

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.”

When God created all things, there was no sin curse. Humans were in perfect relationship to God. But, then mankind (Adam and Eve) sinned against God, and now they knew sin, and thus God put a curse on them and on the earth, and he banished them from his presence. Since that time, all humankind has been born with sin natures, separated from God, and doomed to eternity in hell. So, God the Father sent his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to the earth to take on human form, to suffer like we suffer, and to be tempted in like manner as we are also tempted, yet without sin. He also sent him to the earth to die on a cross for our sins. When he died, our sins died with him, and were buried with him. When he was resurrected from the dead, he rose victorious over sin, hell, Satan and death. Amen!

By God’s grace, via Jesus’ blood shed on the cross for our sins, through our faith in him, we can be forgiven of our sins, be made righteous in God’s sight, be restored to fellowship with God, and have the hope of eternal life with God, both now and forevermore.

When we come to faith in Jesus Christ, we die with Christ to sin, and we are resurrected of the Spirit of God with Christ to newness of life, “created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (See: Eph. 4:20-24). Peter said that Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness (1 Pet. 2:24). Paul said that Jesus died that we might no longer live for ourselves but for Jesus who gave himself up for us (2 Co. 5:15). He also said that Jesus died that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us who walk (conduct our lives) no longer according to the flesh, but according to (in agreement with) the Spirit. And, John said that if we say we have fellowship with God, but we continue (persist) to walk (conduct our lives) in darkness (in living according to our sinful flesh), we are liars (1 Jn. 1:6). We will die, unless by the Spirit we put to death the deeds of the flesh (Ro. 8:1-14).

Yet, many people on this earth do not yet know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior of their lives. As well, many who claim to know him do not live like they have been set free from slavery to sin, but they are involved in addictive sinful behaviors, and have wandered off to follow after the gods of this world. So many people have been deceived by Satan’s lies, and have followed after the lies, instead of seeking the truth. So, God has planned a time at the end of time where he will judge his adulterous people and the people of this sinful world so that he can renew them and restore them to a right (correct) relationship with him (See: Rev. 2-3). Yet, God is not confined merely to these final years on the earth to discipline those he loves, for he does that on a consistent basis. One of the ways in which he disciplines is by exposing the people’s sins. I think here of this recent news event, whether real or orchestrated, I do not know, where a website provided for people to have extra-marital affairs has now been exposed. If this is real, it is certainly one way of disciplining the wayward in order to bring them to their senses, so that God can heal them.

During this time of judgment, God’s people (the elect), who are living in spiritual adultery and self-indulgent behavior (See: Rev. 2-3), will lose their shirts, i.e. they will suffer great financial loss and loss of possessions. There will be consequences for their sinful behaviors, yet they will not be lost for eternity. God will change their hearts, they will repent of their sins, forsake their idols, and he will restore them to fellowship with him. When God completes his time of judgment on the people of this earth, through which time his church will be revived (made ready for her husband), and people from all nations, tribes, and languages will stream to Jesus Christ, he will roll up the heavens and the earth like a garment, and they will all be changed (See: Heb. 1:10-12). The curse of sin and death will be gone, and we will be in perfect relationship with God, like Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden. There will be no more tears, no sin (hallelujah!), no pain and no death, for the old order of things (under the curse) will have passed away. Amen! And, Amen!

Everything New (vv. 5-8)

And He who sits on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” And He *said, “Write, for these words are faithful and true.” Then He said to me, “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost. He who overcomes will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son. But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

I see here in this writing a sense of both present and future, i.e. of the time we still have on this earth, when we can come to the spring of living water, and when we can overcome, through faith in Jesus Christ, the temptations of our flesh, but also a promise of a future renewal of all things, when the old order of things will have passed away, and all things will become new.

For us to come to Christ and to his salvation, we must thirst for him. We must realize our need of him and of his life-changing Spirit living within us, and we must desire that changed life, of the Spirit of God. We must turn from (repent of) our sins, be transformed in heart and mind of the Spirit of God, and be given new lives in the Spirit to be lived for the glory of God, where we walk daily in fellowship with God in his holiness and righteousness. Yet, we can do none of this in our own flesh. There is nothing we can do to earn or to deserve our own salvation. We can never be good enough to win God’s approval. It is only through faith in Jesus Christ, and in what he did for us in dying for our sins, that we can be made righteous and have eternal life with God. Even the ability to repent and to believe and to walk in obedience to our Lord is of God, and can only be done in his power within us, as we cooperate with and participate with him in death to sin and living to righteousness.

As well, we must be overcomers. True faith in Jesus Christ is continuous, persistent, enduring and lasts until the end. We are not saved based on past belief. Eternal life is only promised to those who believe (present tense) on Jesus Christ. There are many people who believe a person can pray a prayer to “receive” Christ, then live how they want, and still have eternal life guaranteed them, even if they deny Christ by their lives. This is not what the Bible teaches. Yet, I don’t believe scripture teaches sinless perfection, either, for we read in I Jn. 2 that these things were written that we might not sin, but if any of us do sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, who speaks to God in our defense. That is why we are being saved, being made holy, and being conformed into the likeness of Jesus, and why we must die daily to sin and self, because we are still a work in progress.

Yet, for those who choose to continue (persist) in walking (conducting their lives) according to their sinful flesh (in darkness), they will not have eternal life, but they will die in their sins. So, if you think you have heaven guaranteed just because at some point in your life you made a decision to “receive” Christ, but you do not obey Christ, but you continue to go your own way, then think again, because your life depends on you walking in the truth.

Songs in the Night / An Original Work / December 18, 2013

“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God,
And the other prisoners were listening to them.” Acts 16:25 NIV ‘84

Lord, I praise You forevermore.
You, my Savior, I now adore.
Hope in heaven awaiting me,
Because You died at Calvary.

I have been forgiven,
And I’m bound for heaven.
Jesus set me free from
All my sin, I say.
I will praise Him always!

Lord, I love You for all You’ve done:
Overcame death, my vict’ry won!
Jesus saved me, and now I’m free!
I rejoice in His love for me.

I will walk in vict’ry!
My sin is but hist’ry!
I am free to please Him
With my life today.
I will love Him always!

Lord, I thank You for giving me
A new life bought at Calvary.
Loving Jesus, I meet with Him.
Tender mercies now flow within.

Lord, I am so thankful;
Through my Lord, I’m able
To sit at His table;
Fellowship with Him.
I will thank Him always!