You Don’t NEED to get permission to share Jesus

Share Jesus freely, tell your bad man or bad woman story, people love gossip

Daily Spirit & Word: 741:

You Don’t Need To Ask For Permission.

Share the Good News Freely.

Pentecost Prayer Week: Day 5.

Good morning my friends, today is FANTASTIC FRIDAY: Ying Kai is coming to vist my home at 1.30pm with some Church Leaders and key members of our Fellowship. And we’ve got a Church Fellowship Curry Night, but first we’re meeting for some powerful prayer at 8.00am. It’s been a busy week, but so full of delights in the LORD.

Though the Pentecost Prayer Week is not quite over, I want to thank our Archbishops for the initiative to call all the Church of England to prayer for the Evangelisation of the Nation. We’ve been busy praying at home, in church, in fellowship groups and in small groups,, we’ve had Alpha on Tuesday: Why and HOW should I share my faith? On Wednesday, we’ve been out sharing the Gospel on the streets. On Tuesday, Emma gave her live to the LORD, on Wednesday she was almost killed by a falling rock, but it fell to the ground just inches from her head. Last night we had an awesome time of simply worship; singing and praising the Lord.

You know something, being a follower of Jesus is exciting, enjoyable, exhausting, but empowering.

When we’re with people, wherever we are, we’ve just taken them to church.

When we’re living with Jesus and His called-out people in this world, then the world has experienced church.

Christianity, following Jesus, is a MOVEMENT, it’s not a condition. We’re moved by Jesus to GO into this world and spread the Gospel, the Good News, but we’re also moved by the HOLY SPIRIT to be church, holy, wherever we are. When people are in your presence they are in church.

I’ve discovered a NEW boldness is available for the saints.

Emma became a Christian on Tuesday and shared her faith with someone the day after, on Wednesday she declared to a stranger, “It’s because I’m now a Christian”… With our heart we believe and are saved, with our mouth we TESTIFY… Romans 10:8-10. We’d normally take people through a TEN WEEK COURSE to get them to that point, but we’ve been discovering that it’s much, much better if someone can share what they do know as quickly as possible. If they’ve repented and trusted in Jesus as Lord, they can share that quickly with others. We’ve been unintentionally holding the church back, because of our TRADITIONS. Instead of following Jesus example and the teaching of the New Testament, we’ve been following man-made traditions. People don’t need lots of head-knowledge to share Jesus, they just need to be willing to be obedient to His Great Commission, to GO and SHARE what they already know in their heart is true: “I was once in darkness, I heard the Good News of Jesus, I repented and trusted in Him, I’m now saved”… When we share how bad we were with people, they love a bad-man story, because people love gossip, they’ll be interested. On the other hand, if we start telling people, “I’ve just been on a 12 Week Course and it’s now time for me to share my faith…” NO! my friends, let’s get a boldness to set the young lambs in the faith free to share Jesus as quickly as they can. Of course they don’t know everything yet, but they don’t need to, they just need to KNOW Jesus. The Holy Spirit will take them where He wants them to be and with encouragement, discipleship training and prayer, they’ll go from strength to strength in obedience to the Lord.

So can you gather that I’m excited and encouraged, it really is a Fantastic Friday and it’s only 5.00am.

Have an awesome Pentecost Weekend: Don’t stop praying though, we’re going to keep praying EVERY DAY for the people the LORD has strategically placed in our lives, those who know that we are Christians who love the LORD, and we’re going to be looking for opportunities to SHARE the Good News with them. They are our OIKOS. (BTW: Josi was out shopping and saw on the supermarket shelf OYKOS yoghurt. She was wondering what OYKOS means?) It’s not quite the same as our OIKOS, by too similar to wonder.

PERMISSION NOT REQUIRED: YOU’VE GOT IT ALREADY.

Oh, BTW, you don’t need to be polite and ask permission to share the Gospel, because Jesus has already given you His permission to share it with EVERYONE.

“All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me….” Matthew 28:18…

If you ask a friend, relative, neighbour or stranger, “Can I share with you something about Jesus”… You already KNOW what their reaction is going to be “I’m not ready to hear this yet” or “I’m not religious” or “I’m not interested in religion”. However, if you take the initiative and just share, “You know, I used to be a very bad person, I once told a lie…. they’ll be hooked”… You’ve got them, just share your bad-man / bad-woman story, how before you met Jesus you were a terrible person. Because people love bad-man / bad-woman stories. Just take a look at all the TV shows about BAD people, the world loves to hear bad people stories. St Paul did that many times in the Bible, what an example. You’re probably not as bad as Paul, he persecuted Christians and even took part in stoning some of them. But you have broken some of God’s Commandments, share how you were once bad and how Jesus delivered you from darkness, then share how anyone can come into the Light of Jesus and be saved. So can you see, you don’t need to be polite any-longer, you don’t need their permission, they’ll give it once you begin telling your bad-man / bad-woman story.

A wonderful book that’s selling by the million is “An Atheist Comes to Faith in Jesus”… A woman who was a Professor is telling the world how she once was an Atheist but now believes… The WORLD loves that bad-woman book.

Have an AWESOME Pentecost Weekend: If you’re free, come along to our Baptism service. It’s in the open air in West Norwood London. Just outside St Luke’s Church. People love to stop and watch what we crazy Christians are doing. What a witness for the Glory of the Lord.

Please don’t stop praying for our Baptism Candidates and for Ying as he comes to share at my home today.

Be blessed and be filled afresh with Holy Spirit to share Jesus with your OIKOS.

Don.

Matthew 28:16-20 (NIV)
16  Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go.
17  When they saw him, they worshipped him; but some doubted.
18  Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.
19  Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
20  and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

  • Jesus told you to do it, so “GO”
  • Share the Good News of the Gospel Freely.
  • Tell your own bad-man / bad-woman story.
  • Let people HEAR about Jesus offer of NEW LIFE.
  • He’s with you to the very end of the age. 
  • Amen!

BTW: There are a FEW people around the world trying to hack into this web page. Why?

Preaching True Repentance

The ingredients of true repentance

Daily Spirit & Word: 725:

TRUE REPENTANCE: Not Just Saying “Sorry” to God.

True Repentance Is NOT Just Saying “Sorry”…

True Repentance Is A Requirement For: Salvation from,  Forgiveness for and Cleansing From Sin.

KNOW THE TRUTH & THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREE

Mark 6:12-13 (NIV)
12  They went out and preached that people should repent.
13  They drove out many demons and anointed many sick people with oil and healed them.

I was so touched last night when out sharing the Good News of Jesus in West Norwood with David and Ben. For a change we ventured just up from our church to West Norwood Train Station and began engaging those returning from a day’s work as they exited the entrance. Of course many people after a day’s toil were tired and just wanted to get home, put their feet up and watch TV or whatever else they planned to do. But we did get into some great conversations. Ben and David talked with a Muslim woman for over half and hour, and all that time I was talking to a couple of young ladies.

It was amazing, because I began by giving them one of our little tracts, The Million Pound Note: I asked them, “If it was real, what would you do with it?” One of them immediately said, “I give half of it away to the poor”… I said, “WOWzer! What a nice lady you are”. I asked her friend, “What would you do with it?” She said, “I’d go on a holiday, then buy a nice house”… then her friend said, “We could go away together”… They were really nice young ladies. I said, “flip it over and look at the Million Pound Question”. One of them did and read it out loud, “Would you sell one of your eyes for £1,000,000?” She said, “No way. My eyes are too valuable”… I said, that’s amazing. Her friend also confirmed she wouldn’t sell one of her eyes either.

Then we moved on to the value of their Eternal Soul.

What followed was a bit of to and fro about; the SOUL, Eternity, Heaven, Hell, Sin, etc…

I was able to share the whole Gospel with them and finally led to the question: “If God were to judge you tonight, according to His standards revealed in His Commandments, would you go to heaven or hell?”

Their heads hung low and they went a bit quiet, “Hell” they both answered.

I asked, “Does that concern you?” One said, “Yes” and the other said, “No, because God is a forgiving God”…

I said, “You are right, God is a forgiving God, but it’s not automatic”… “It doens’t just happen, God doesn’t say, “Oh, I know you’ve sinned, but it’s OK, you just come on in anyway”… I explained, “God can’t do that, because as well as being; full of mercy, kindness, goodness, forgiveness and gentleness, He’s also a just Judge and must punish sin. He can’t in His Justice just let sinners off with their sins”.

The Good Earthly Judge: I then gave them an example of a good earthly judge, who with a guilty criminal before him, no matter how sorry he is, must give the punishment or fine that the LAW requires. They agreed, criminals need to be punished for their crimes. I explained that God will also punish our sin. One lie will keep us out of Heaven forever, because sin contaminates the soul, and no sin contaminated soul can enter into Heaven. “Can you imagine what Heaven would be like if it was full or murderers and liars?”

So I asked them again, “Will you go to Heaven or Hell?” They had now stopped trying to justify themselves, but said instead, “Well, that means nobody can go to Heaven”BOOM! “You’ve got it ladies, that’s right, because ALL HAVE SINNED, just ONE sin will keep us out of Heaven forever.”

Then I asked, “Do you know what God has done so that no one need end up in Hell?” They said they didn’t, but I inquired further, “Christians all over the world have just celebrated Easter. Have you heard about Jesus? How He died upon a Cross? How Jesus rose again three days later on the first Easter Sunday?” It was like I just brought them out of a dark dungeon into the full light of the sun, because they both smiled, “It was because of Jesus death”. I said, “That’s right ladies, Jesus died so that we could go to Heaven and be forgiven and cleansed from sin to be made fit for heaven. His blood purifies us from all sin. He died for you and me.”

One of them said, “So does that mean everyone just ends up in heaven then?”

I said, “NO, Not quite, something is required from us, we must first Believe and TRUST in Jesus death in our place for our sin, then we need to Confess (own up and accept we are sinners) and REPENT of our sinful ways of living, then we must RECEIVE Jesus as our Lord and Saviour.” I explained what happens when we do that and how Jesus gives us a NEW HEART and NEW LIFE and NEW DESIRES… i.e. The Commandments are not prohibitions any more “Don’t Do this or Don’t do that”, but they become for those who’ve trusted in Jesus, wonderful promises; “You shall not want to steal, kill, lie, cheat, argue, hate, lust or commit adultery any more”… God changes our desires.

One of them smiled again and said jokingly “So that means no more illegal downloads of music then?”

What followed was an explanation of what life is like from now on as a believer….

  • They wanted to know how I became a follower of Jesus,
  • They wanted to know more about church,
  • They wanted to wait until they were ready,
  • They wanted an excuse to remain in sin,
  • They still had lots of questions they wanted to ask,

It was an amazing conversation, but it ended with me saying, “Look I know you’ve got lots more questions, but do you have a Bible at home?” They both had Bibles at home they had never read…   I said, “Go home and open your own Bible in Matthew, Mark, Luke or John and read about Jesus life and His message. Check out if what I’m saying to you is TRUE from what the Bible says. Then remember what I’ve said, “You must turn from your sin to trust in Jesus and receive Him as your King”

Then if you want to, come and join us (I pointed to our Church) you’d be more than welcome any Sunday at 10.30am. It was so encouraging one of the young ladies said, “I’m going to come to your church”… I also encouraged them to come on our Alpha Course to ask all their questions.

But I gave them this final warning, “We don’t know how long we’ve got left on this earth” I told them about Anja who’d come because I’d met her in the street and shared about Jesus, and how her baby had died unexpectedly. We just don’t know how long we’ve got before we can come to God for forgiveness and cleansing to make us fit for heaven. I said the Bible encourages us to think like this, “Today is the Day of Salvation: Repent and Believe the Good News”…. Ladies, believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and Repent today.

I finished by thanking them, gave them another of our little cards that reads, “Thank you for listening” it’s got a picture of a cute dog with big ears and a summary of the conversation we’d just had on the back.

We shook hands warmly and they thanked me as we parted company.

What is TRUE REPENTANCE? (SEE BELOW).

I was reading all about it this morning and came across an old Puritan teaching the outlines what ‘real’ repentance is like: Read it below and then ask yourself this question: “Have I ‘truly’ repented of my sins and trusted in Jesus Christ as my Lord?” Have an AWESOME Thursday with Jesus.

Please Pray: We had many conversations last night, I’ve only shared one of them, please will you pray for everyone who was encouraged, challenged and witnessed with last night? Pray that the Lord Jesus, by His Holy Spirit, will continued to draw them to Himself and that they’ll find GRACE to repent and believe the Good News.

Challenge: Keep Witnessing: The Lord’s Followers will be strengthened and encouraged in many ways by taking the initiative to witness for Him with all their family, friends, neighbours and those they come in contact with regularly, those who know you are His followers. Be kind, generous, gentle, bold, passionate and compassionate. May the LORD fill you afresh with Holy Spirit anointing. Amen!

Don.

 

THE INGREDIENTS OF TRUE REPENTANCE:

Mark 6:12-13 (NIV)
12  They went out and preached that people should repent.
13  They drove out many demons and anointed many sick people with oil and healed them.

When we make a cake it needs the right ingredients to taste great. We follow recipes for successful and tasty cakes. To discover what true repentance looks, tastes and feels like, there are Biblical recipes to follow too.

These final two verses are from Mark’s account of Jesus sending out The TWELVE (Mark 6:7-13). The two verses summarize the specifics of the 12 Apostles’ mission. It mirrors what they had seen Jesus do. With His authority and enablement, they cast out many demons. They anointed with oil many who were sick and healed them (cf. Jas 5:14-16). They went out and preached repentance, the same message preached by both John the Baptist (Mark 1:4) and Jesus ( Mark 1:15). They were to go as servants. They were not to compromise their message even if it brought rejection and persecution. They had to have the courage to tell the truth about Jesus and the gospel.

If “repentance” was the first word out of the mouth of John the Baptist, The Lord Jesus Christ, and the 12 Apostles (Acts 2:38), then it must be an important component of the true gospel message today and it marks the starting point of the true Christian life.

Thomas Watson, and Old English Puritan (ca. 1620-1686), wrote a helpful treatise on repentance. He stated, “Repentance is a grace of God’s Spirit whereby a sinner is inwardly humbled and visibly reformed” [Watson, Doctrine, 18]….

Watson identified six ingredients necessary for true repentance.

The first is sight of sin, whereby a person comes to themselves (Luke 15:17) and clearly views their lifestyle as sinful. If a disciple fails to see their sin, they are rarely motivated to repent…. (That’s why we take time to show people how they’ve sinned against God by using His Ten Commandments: How we’ve all offended a Holy and Righteous God).

The second ingredient for true repentance is sorrow for sin (Ps 38:18). We need to feel the nails of the cross in our soul as we sin. Repentance includes a godly grief, a holy agony (2 Cor 7:10) i.e. “It’s because of my sin those nails pierced the Saviour’s hands”. The fruits of repentance will be expressed in genuine, anguishing sorrow over the offense itself and not just its consequences. This sorrow for sin is more than just a “worldly grief”; it will be seen in the ongoing actions it produces (the fruit of repentance is a changed life).

The third ingredient is confession of sin. The humble sinner voluntarily passes judgment on themselves as they sincerely admit to the specific sins of their heart…. In the Scriptures, we find at least seven benefits to confession:

  • Confession of sin gives glory to God (Josh 7:19).
  • Confession of sin is a means to humble the soul (2 Chr 26:19).
  • Confession of sin gives release to a troubled heart (Ps 51:11-12).
  • Confession of sin purges out sin (Neh 3:13). Augustine called it “the expeller of vice.”
  • Confession of sin endears Christ to the soul that needs atoning (Rom 7:25).
  • Confession of sin makes way for forgiveness (2 Sam 12:13; 1 John 1:9).
  • Confession of sin makes way for mercy (Prov 28:13).

The fourth ingredient of true repentance is shame for sin: True Repentance causes a holy bashfulness or embarrassment, i.e. it is the shame you feel when your inadequacy or guilt is made public. The Prophet Ezra prayed, “O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift my face to You, my God, for our iniquities have risen higher than our heads, and our guilt has mounted up to the heavens” (Ezra 9:6). The repenting prodigal was so ashamed of his sin that he did not feel he deserved to be a son anymore (Luke 15:21). It’s like our Sin makes us feel shamefully naked and deformed in God’s eyes and puts Christ to shame, the one who took the scorn of the cross on himself. I’ve often feelt ashamed when I’ve been confronted by my sinfulness in the presence of God and when I’m will other believers who are walking closely with Jesus.

The fifth ingredient in true repentance is a sincere hatred of sin: We must hate our sin to the core. We hate sin more deeply when we love Jesus more fully.

Repentance begins with the love of God and ends with hatred of sin…. Tolerating sin is a willful leap toward committing it. True repentance loathes sin deeply.

Finally, the sixth progressive ingredient of true repentance is turning from sin and returning to the Lord “with all your heart” (Joel 2:12). This turning from sin implies a notable change in the ways we live, “performing deeds in keeping with their repentance” (Acts 26:20). Ezekiel records these words of God to the house of Israel: “Repent and turn away from your idols, and turn away your faces from all your abominations” (Ezek 14:6).

We are called to turn away from all our abominations—not just the obvious ones or the ones that create friction in others. The goal, end, destination or finish-line of true repentance is not to manufacture peace among others with perfunctory repentance, but rather to turn to God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength.

Most importantly, though, this repentance is not just a turning away from sin; it is also a turning “of repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus” (Acts 20:21). [We should repent of our] doubt by believing in the goodness, greatness and graciousness of God, and [turning] in faith to trust in the freedom the Lord Jesus Christ offers to each one of us in the Gospel. Repentance is rooted in a hatred of sin and a joyful awareness of God’s loving-kindness, which leads to joy: “God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance” (Rom 2:4). We rejoice that Christ has done everything for us—all that we need to secure our salvation and our growth in holiness.

Christ’s Warning: Repent or Perish: “Unless you repent, you too will perish”

Luke 13:3 (NIV) “I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.”

  • Why do ‘modern’ churches hate to teach on repentance?
  • What’s wrong with preaching repentance?

Answer: NOTHING: Because true repentance is one of the KEYS to unlock HEAVEN. (Only Satan would hate a Christian telling people to REPENT).

The man-pleasing, modern, self-indulgent church has bent God’s KEY out of shape. Let’s straighten it and do what Christ has commanded: Preach Repentance.

PRAYER: “Lord,  I am an adopted child, not a slave to sin. I was a sinner by now, by Your Grace and Mercy, I am a Saint. I know the TRUTH and in knowing the truth I have been set free. Thank You LORD Jesus Christ, because I am accepted because of Your sacrifice upon the Cross. Please Lord, help me never to forget how much You have demonstrated Your love for me or how loved, secure, rich and free I am when I put my trust in You, my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”

 

I’m Going Home To Share The Good News

Jesus experienced rejection of his own family, friends, townsfolk, so don't give up or give in to the fear of rejection,

Good morning my friends, today I’m sharing the message I preached in church yesterday, but it’s even more impacting me than I thought, because there’s a principle that I’ve learned afresh, the importance of persevering in sharing the faith we’ve received no matter what kind of response it provokes in those who hear it. Don’t GIVE UP or GIVE IN when there’s a negative response.

Daily Spirit & Word: 722: Jesus Visits His Home Town.

The Incredible Unbelief in Jesus’ Home-Town of Nazareth.

“FEAR NOTHING”: Said Jesus. “Except: God…” We love all kinds of scary things: wild rides at the fair, scary rides a parks, pranks that make us frightened (the Bush-Man on Facebook), etc… but the one thing we should be afraid of we’re told, “we mustn’t tell people about that” because it’s not NICE to scare people. How is it OK to scare people with ghost, ghool, horror and thriller stories, but it’s NOT OK to scare them about God? My friends, “FEAR GOD”…Why? “Because the fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom”.

Good morning my friends, we’re back with Mark’s Gospel again today, this time our focus is upon Jesus visit to His home town in Nazareth. However, instead of receiving a warm welcome, like those who return from war, he encounters unbelief and criticism, but that has tragic consequences for his townsfolk.

Mark 6:1-6 (NIV)
1 Jesus left there and went to his home town, accompanied by his disciples.
2  When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed. “Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him, that he even does miracles!
3  Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offence at him.
4  Jesus said to them, “Only in his home town, among his relatives and in his own house is a prophet without honour.”
5  He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them.
6  And he was amazed at their lack of faith. Then Jesus went round teaching from village to village.

NOTE: 1: Their Initial Amazement.

The Situation: Jesus has just been thronged by thousands, news was spreading fast about all the miracles he’s been performing around the towns and villages and on the edges of The Sea of Galilee. The Deliverance of a man with thousands of demons, the woman who’d been sick for 12 years, the bringing back to life a girl who had died.

But then almost like a Train Hitting the Buffers at Land’s End in Cornwall: It all comes to a CRASHING HALT: Where? In a foreign town? NO! In a Roman Official’s home? No! Amongst the foreigners? No! Where? In Jesus’ Home Town.

He was in town accompanied by his disciples. 

One of the things that should have convinced his home town of Jesus’ status should have been the great entourage that accompanied him now.

Jesus Return Home: It’s like a Great General Returning from a Campaign: But instead of a Triumphant Rally, Jesus doesn’t even get a little party.

  • What does Jesus do? On the Holy Day: Sabbath: Jesus goes, like a good Jew would, to the Synagogue.
  • What does Jesus do in the Synagogue? “He began to teach”
  • What’s the initial response? “Amazement”...

Amazement: Is the feeling that accompanies something extremely surprising. Another word could be ‘Astonishment’. (It’s surprise, stupefacation, admiration, wonder, wonderment). Modern words: Impressed.

Listen to their Questions: they asked;

  • “Where did this man get these things?”
  •  “What’s this wisdom that has been given him?
  •  “He even does miracles!”

Jesus teaching is backed-up by the Miracles and Signs and Wonders He performed: Initial response: Amazement.

How would you feel if Jesus was here right now, teaching you the Secrets of God’s Kingdom?

You’d probably AWESTRUCK right?

You’re mouth would fall open and you’d gaze in wonder and amazement.

A modern word for that is WOW or WOWzer! Jesus is AWESOME.

What would be your response?

However, before you answer that question, let’s look at how they responded.

NOTE: 2) The Unreasonable Unbelief of Jesus Townsfolk and Family Members.

They are initially amazed and awestruck, they knew about the Miracles, but what a SHOCKING and SADDENING result for Jesus.

Listen to the next set of Questions: They KNOW all about Jesus of Nazareth.

  • Isn’t this the carpenter?
  • Isn’t this Mary’s son?
  • Isn’t Jesus the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?”

That’s right, they KNOW Jesus background. They KNOW where he comes from? They KNOW his family? They KNOW his trade / employment.

  • He’s a Carpenter: The Son of a Carpenter… “How could a mere Carpenter get so much wisdom, and miracles making power?” … “We know He hasn’t attended any Rabbinical School”… They are offended / scandalised by a mere Carpenter having the audacity to teach them.
  • He’s a Son: Of a woman we know all about. He’s just an ordinary man…
  • He’s got brothers and sisters amongst us here. (Mary obviously didn’t stay a Virgin after Jesus’ birth, she had other sons and daughters. Only Jesus was Mary’s Divine child).

NOTE: 3) WHY They Refused To Believe or Trust in Jesus:

They were amazed at his wisdom, they knew about the miracles, but the FOCUS instead upon His (human) Personality. Who He IS…

What was their response to Jesus teaching and their questioning and reasoning? “They Took OFFENCE at Him”...

Instead of being so impressed and filled with JOY, as they most certainly should have been, they are simply OFFENDED.

OFFENCE: Is a feeling of anger caused by an offence: i.e. Jesus was only a Carpenter, a Son and a brother, so why is He here ‘preaching and teaching’? Their offence was anger cause by who they thought Jesus was.

The Reason For Their Offence Was, “What right has this Son and Carpenter to TEACH us?” … “Who does He think He is?”… It’s a feeling of being appalled, aggrieved, bruised, outraged, pained, scandalised, violated and wounded… (A litle girl in our gathering yesterday stated “they may have been jealous of Jesus”… Jealously is a powerful emotion).

We don’t even know what it was that Jesus was teaching them in the Synagogue in Nazareth that day: Have you ever wanted to be a “fly-on-the-wall”? I’d love to know what it was they were so Scandalised and Offended about, but we don’t.

The most important thing for Mark (and the Holy Spirit) is that we know that in Jesus Home Town: Amongst Family and Townsfolk: They were offended by His PERSON more than his actual teaching in their Synagogue.

  • Their UNBELIEF is UNREASONABLE: Because of the EVIDENCE. (i.e. His wisdom, His Miracles) (No right thinking person when given the evidence they had received would deny Jesus or refuse to Honour Him). It’s just totally unreasonable.
  • Their UNBELIEF is  INEXCUSABLE: on account of all the evidence. They should have responded with open heart and hands and voices, but they didn’t instead they lacked faith in Jesus because they remained offended.

NOTE: 4) THEIR UNBELIEF IS COSTLY.

However, their Unbelief and Offence: has a terrible consequence for them.

A)  They Get a REBUKE from Jesus For Their Unbelief.

Jesus STATEMENT: “Only in his home town, among his relatives and in his own house is a prophet without honour.”

That’s not merely statement of fact: but of OPEN rebuke. i.e. Strangers welcomed and honoured Jesus. Complete Strangers showed Him respect. Complete Strangers listened and responded to His teaching, but His town’s folk and even some of Jesus’ own family: were offended and without faith. They remained in STUBBORN UNBELIEF.

When there’s so much EVIDENCE: That kind of UNBELIEF is a Sin.

GRAVITY: It’s like saying, “I know that Newton Defined The Law of Gravity, but even though I can see an Apple falling from a tree, and every time I drop a cup it falls to the floor and smashed to pieces, I don’t believe in GRAVITY”… How foolish.

I remember an old Government Health and Safety Advert: About the Dangers we face a work:

“Sir Isaac Newton tells us why, an apple falls down from the sky,
and from this fact it’s very plane, all other objects do the same,
A brick, a boot, a bar, a cup, invariably it falls down; NOT up.
And every other working tool, is governed by the self-same rule.
So when you handle tools up there, let your watchword be; take care.”

The Evidence for who Jesus was, and backing up what He was saying and teaching was all around them: Yet even members of his own family and many in his home town remained in stubborn UNBELIEF…

You might be surprised by that, I am and So was our Lord Jesus Christ. Look at verse 6 of our reading today; “He was amazed at their lack of faith”… Their Unbelief is unreasonable, inexcusable, brings a rebuke, but note what happens next…

B) Jesus Wasn’t Able to Perform ANY Miracles.

Except heal only a few people. Surely healing a few people is miraculous, but what the text is telling us is that Jesus was hindered by their UNBELIEF and lack of faith.

C) thirdly, Jesus MOVES ON because of Their Unbelief:

What happened as a result of their Unbelief? “Jesus moves on from town to town teaching”… He moved away from His Home Town: Nazareth. He leaves behind his own family, neighbours who’d known him all his life, and goes to other towns in the area, to strangers rather than friends and family. What a dreadful shame.

My friends, there’s a STARK WARNING for us here today.

If we’ve been CONVINCED: that Jesus is who He claims to be “The Divine Son of God”, The King of the Jews, The King of a KINGDOM not of this Earth, The Expected One. If we believe that He could and did perform wonderful miracles. That He had amazing insightful and wise teachings, but refuse to put our FAITH in Him, then we’re just the same as His own family members and townsfolk of Nazareth.

Their UNBELIEF: Was both UNREASONABLE and INEXCUSABLE and thirdly, very COSTLY: If we’ve become convinced of Jesus, then we’re just the same; If we remain in STUBBORN UNBELIEF.

NOTE: 5) What’s A RIGHT RESPONSE TO JESUS?

Faith IS confirmed by our RESPONSE: How are we TRUSTING in Jesus today? (Not what we’ve done in the PAST).

It’s not so much about what we believe about Him. (As Nazareth did). But our HEART response to HIM.

It’s not about being impressed by Him. (As Nazareth was). But receiving HIM by FAITH.

Those people were impressed, but they REFUSED to Honour Him and Accept Him.

Remember what the Apostle John recorded in John Chapter One: ”

John 1:10-18 (NIV)
10  He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognise him. (Even the one’s who knew him best, his home town, didn’t not receive him).
11  He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. (or believe him or trust in him or honour him).
12  Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—
13  children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
14  The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
15  John testifies concerning him. He cries out, saying, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’ “
16  From the fulness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another.
17  For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
18  No-one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made him known.

Jesus was the ONE: The ONLY ONE, to ever make God Knowable: How? Because He was God.

“If you’ve seen me Philip, you’ve seen the Father”… John 14.

Today is the DAY Of SALVATION: 

Before Jesus moves on from you, to go to another soul and begin to work on them some miracles, to convince them with His teaching, will you OPEN your heart, mind, soul and life to Jesus today?

Will you RESPOND by Accepting or Rejecting Jesus?

Reason It Out: (It’s NOT a blind-leap-of-faith). Look at Jesus teachings. Look at the Miracles recorded. Listen to the Testimony of Believers today. Examine all the Evidence in History from the time of Jesus. All that EVIDENCE is still with us. Enough to CONVINCE the most sincere or sceptical seeker today.

LOOK AT CREATION: The Bible tells us that in itself us enough EVIDENCE in CREATION for the EXISTENCE of God.

Stubborn Unbelief will BE COSTLY: Not just in this life, but in the life to come after death.

Romans 1:20 (NIV) “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.”

CREATION ITSELF IS ENOUGH EVIDENCE.

Because if we CHOOSE NOT TO BELIEVE: On account of all the evidence we have been given. Jesus might just move on from trying by His Spirit to convince us… “He moved on from town to town teaching”

If we reject Him NOW: We will be rejected in ETERNITY.

Respond: Put you faith and trust in Jesus Christ today. Why? Because TODAY is the DAY Of SALVATION.

Don’t be like His own townsfolk and family; trust, believe and receive Jesus NOW.

For those who’ve never done that before or for those who’ve done it in the past but wandered away from Jesus.

I’m going to GIVE The A, B, C of Coming to faith in Jesus.

The Gospel: We want all our fellowship to know and be able to share the Good News.

  1. A) Accept: That you are a sinner, who needs God’s forgiveness. Without that forgiveness we’ll face God on Judgement day, carrying the weight of our own sins.
  2. B) Believe: Believe that Jesus Christ died upon the Cross for your sins. That He is the Son of God. That He is who He claimed to be GOD. That He died, but rose again and is alive now. You can know Him.
  3. C) Receive: ByREPENT & TRUST: We may accept we’re sinners, believe that Jesus died for those sins, but until we receive Him by Faith, we’re still just like those Townsfolk in Nazareth, Impressed, but still without TRUSTING FAITH. Receive Jesus by an act of faith. Repent and Trust in Him alone and God will grant you the gift of Eternal life, forgiveness of sins, cleansing from sin, New Life in Christ and Gifts of the Holy Spirit indwelling and renewal and power to life a good and holy and abundant life, useful and gifted for God’s service for evermore.

Repentance: Is a change of mind (Greek Word: Metanoia)  regarding our way of living: There must be an element of sorrow / regret for the way we’ve been living in rebellion towards God. Then when we’re broken and convicted it leads us to the decision / desire to want to live our lives in ways that a pleasing to God. True repentance therefore will lead to a change in the way that we live our lives.

Trust in Jesus: It like putting on a life-jacket when you jump from a sinking ship. or a Parachute from a Plane that falling from the sky. Without the life-saver or parachute, your demise is certain. Put ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST: AND YOU WILL BE SAVED. Without Jesus Christ we’re doomed to face a holy and righteous God, who’s justly angered by our sinful rebellion and will give us His justice on Judgement Day. Those who’ve not trusted in Jesus Christ (Put on the Lord Jesus to be clothed in His righteousness), will be thrown into the lake of fire with the devil and all demons.

BUT: God’s doesn’t want that, that’s why He sent his beloved Son to die upon the Cross, to take our punishment and save us from God’s wrath and judgement to come. That’s why it’s so important to have a right FEAR of God.

Finally: You may have similar responses from those who know you every well, when you give your life to Jesus and are transformed by Him. Your own family, townsfolk and friends might be initially surprised and then be offended by what’s happened to you, but when you begin to share the Good News with them, they may begin to say similar things to what they did about Jesus when He visited His home town.

(who does he / she think they are, they’re no different to me, they are just as sinful as I am, etc)… However, if it happened to Jesus, it can happen to us too. Don’t give up! Don’t stop following Jesus just because family, friends and neighbours don’t like it or won’t respond.

Remember how stubborn you were before you finally came to trust in Jesus Christ. I’ll bet that you didn’t trust in Him the first time you heard the Gospel. He had to draw you to Himself. He had to win your faith and trust in Himself. If it takes time with a stubborn person like yourself, then give those you love time to adjust to the claims of Jesus Christ. Coming to faith is often painful for people, because pride has to die first.

Don’t BE TEMPTED: (as much of our modern church has been) to water-down the hard parts of the Good News. Repentance is critical to true conversion. Without repentance from sin, we cannot be saved. A Satan-Blinded Sinner must see his / her sins for what they are; offensive to God, before they’ll see their need to let go of that way of living. Freely share God’s holy and righteous standards revealed in His Commandments, because you have an ally in the person with whom you are sharing, who’ll keep talking to them long after you’ve gone home to bed: it’s their own CONSCIENCE. Once you share the holy standards of God, the Conscience can be re-awakened and will begin to do it’s work. CONVICTION by God’s Holy Spirit will pull the sinner to his or her knees. It’s NOT all up to you, God wants them saved much more than you do.

Preach to them more than once, because their eternal souls are more valuable that your upset feelings or fear of further rejection. Our LOVE for them should compel us to give them as much GRACE as God has given to us.

So don’t give up, because God didn’t give up on you.

Don’t be put-off by an initial hostile response. Persevere, sometimes people will get angry when you share Jesus. I’ve had that many times, but after responding in gentle ways, their initial anger subsides and they begin to open us to receiving the Good News. Anger is just one of Satan’s ways of trying to scare you into stopping short, giving up and going home.

So don’t give-up on them, don’t give-in to fear, don’t water-down, don’t be afraid of rejection, because Jesus followed His own advice to the man delivered from demons (Mark 5) who went home and told everybody the good news. The Demon Possessed man had a good response when he shared, Jesus had a hostile response (Mark 6), but the PRINCIPLE still stands, GO BACK HOME and share the Good NEWS. Share about all the good things God has done for you and how he has had mercy upon you by forgiving your sins, giving you a new life and the gift of faith and eternal life. Some might reject it, but others may just be ready to respond and put their own faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen!

A NOTE TO MYSELF: Remember how important it is to read the chapters before and after the one you are peaching upon, sometimes there are linked themes, i.e. The Going HOME of Mark 5 and Mark 6…

Have and AWESOME and AMAZING week with Jesus,

Don.

 

How To SAVE The World

Good Works and Gospel Proclamation

Daily Spirit & Word: 718: How To SAVE The World?

Let Your Light Shine & Proclaim The Gospel.

Good morning my friends, Way back in 2014, I did some teaching on the Tabernacle and the Lampstand (DS&W:187: Let Your Light Shine). Today, I’m adding a little more light upon that teaching.

Jesus wants your light to shine, first before Him, but then BEFORE MEN. I’ve been sharing how when Christians are in the world, with people who don’t know Jesus as Lord yet, they are taking those people to CHURCH. Not the Church building, but because they are the Church, the Holy Spirit is in them. Well my friends Jesus wants you to let His Holy Light SHINE so that they can see God is real, alive and to bring them to the point of conversion so they will be able to glorify the LORD too.

Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV)
14  “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden.
15  Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
16  In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

YOU ARE THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD:

My friends, Christians were never meant to be hiding their light in a ‘church building’. We have always been commanded by our Lord Jesus to GO! Go into the WORLD: We’re meant to be both SALT and LIGHT to the people of the world who don’t yet know Jesus as Lord. However, we’ve been contented to SHINE our little light only in church gatherings. How on earth are the people of the world going to get saved if we’re hiding our light in church buildings? “You don’t light a lamp and put it under a bowl” My friends, Jesus didn’t set you on fire to hide that light, so GO. Go into your world today and LET THE LIGHT SHINE…

YBH: Yes but HOW? 

Verse 16 gives us the answer: “let your light so shine before men (people of the world), that they may see you GOOD DEEDS and PRAISE your Father in Heaven”… Awesome! So by just doing GOOD DEEDS people will see the light and come to the point of praising Father God.

Of course it’s not as simple as that, it never is. We’re also to “Give a reason for the hope that is in us”…

1 Peter 3:15 (NIV) “But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,…”

How can they be SAVED unless someone preaches / shares the Good News with them?

Romans 10:14 (NIV)
14  How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?

My friends, there will be many a soul in Hell, who saw your good deeds and thought, “Mary is a really good and nice lady, but I never knew why, I wish she’d told me about Jesus and how I could be saved.”… We’re not to shine our light so that people will see how good we are, we’re to shine that light in such a way that people will KNOW how good God is. So that they will begin to Praise our Father in Heaven, not us.

It has always meant to be Good Works: Kindness, goodness, faithfulness, love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness and self-control, but accompanied with and by the GOOD NEWS: How Jesus took us and cleaned us up, forgave us our sins and rescued us from sin, Satan and Hell. How Jesus has commanded all men everywhere to repent and believe the Good News.

Good Works Accompanied By Good News

So often the ‘church’ has made the mistake of being one or the other: All Good Works or All Good News, but Jesus / God’s intention was that it was always, always meant to be BOTH.

That is HOW we’re to let our light shine: Good WORKS and Gospel Good News.

Remember again how Jesus sent the Demoniac back to his own OIKOS: That word ‘family’ below in the original Greek is OIKOS, it was not limited to just family, but to everyone who knew the man well, his friends, neighbours, those he worked with or for, everyone who knew all about him, that’s what OIKOS means.

Mark 5:18-20 (NIV)
18  As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him.
19  Jesus did not let him, but said, “Go home to your family (OIKOS) and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.”
20  So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed.

Just like that Demon Delivered Man, many of our contemporary Christian brothers and sisters want to STAY with Jesus in the boat of the church buildings. It’s so tempting, comfortable and nice to be just worshipping, praying, praising, but Jesus is still the same, He’s sending US out into the world to shine the light and share the good news. He’s still commanding you and me to go and let your light shine before men, so they will in turn PRAISE your Father in Heaven. This is a REVELATION to many of you I know. Jesus commanded His Disciples to GO into all the world and spread the Good News and make more disciples.

The Delivered Man most certainly did “Let his light shine before men”… Not just in his home town but the whole area. My friends, if you’ve been set free by Jesus, if you’ve been set alight, on fire, ablaze, with His Holy Spirit, then you will be a shining light, people will see your good deeds, but let them know WHY? Why are you such a good person? Why are you doing so much good in the world today? It’s because of your SAVIOUR Jesus Christ and how He’s had mercy upon you. Let them know why and that Jesus wants to SAVE them too with the Good News.

Keep your LIGHT Shining, be continually full of the Holy Spirit my friends, because the most important part of a Christian’s life is the part that only the LORD God Almighty sees. Be filled afresh with the anointing oil of the presence and power of the Holy Spirit today and you’ll be shining for Jesus Christ bringing Him glory by the good things that you do and the way you are sharing the Good News of the Saviour. God’s got so much good planed for you today. Enjoy the day in His mighty power.

You might not SAVE THE WORLD or the whole world, but you’ll be letting Christ’s light shine on your own little part of God’s World. Let it shine! If the whole church is doing that, perhaps we can SAVE many thousands and millions of souls for Him. Amen!

Prayer: I’m praying today for the whole Christian Church in the world. That we’ll all see Christ’s Command to Go OUT, the teaching in the light of all the Scriptures is His desire is that “EVERYONE” comes to repentance, let us not be the ones who’ve failed You LORD by simply worshipping, praying and praising You, when we know we should have been shining Your light and sharing the Good News in the world before men. O Lord Jesus we know You didn’t save the church to hide the light in a building, but to shine Your light in the world. O LORD! The harvest is plentiful and the labourers are few, send out Your Labourers into the Harvest Field of this world. Lord we want to see so many people that we know a love saved, please Lord, let them see the light and respond to the Gospel. Father, watch over Your chosen people and remind us often that we’re to do good works and speak out the Gospel with words too. Amen!

Don.

P.S. HOLY SPIRIT: Someone asked me the other day; “Don, you keep saying be filled with the Holy Spirit, I get that, but can you please tell me how to do it?”

That HOW is so important:

Oh my friends, God’s longing to give you the Holy Spirit, we just need to claim what He longs to give us.

First, we must be certain that we’re SAVED: I say this, because from experience many people have simply come to ‘Church’ thinking they are saved by being a worshipper every week and doing the things that the ‘real’ saints in Christ do. We’re not a Bus simply because we sleep in a bus-garage every night. Neither are we Christians just because we attend church regularly. Many people want the Holy Spirit, but don’t want to submit their lives to Jesus Christ as LORD.

So please my friends, first  CHECK (Examine so as to determine accuracy, quality, or condition): you are in the Family of God: Have you genuinely;

  1. A) BELIEVED and TRUSTED in Christ’s DEATH upon the Cross for your sins?
  2. B) Have you REPENTED, which means letting go of all sin and begun to walk in His ways?
  3. C) and finally have you actually RECEIVED Jesus Christ as Lord?:

(If you are not sure you have, read the full Gospel CLICK Here and discover why you NEED Jesus as your Saviour).

That’s what the Bible calls full salvation. Once you’ve trusted in Jesus like that, then you’ll be born again of God’s Holy Spirit. You will be filled with Holy Spirit, but we need to keep being filled. In order to be re-filled: All we do need to ASK to be filled. God will not give you anything extra unless you ask Him for it. Here’s how to begin: Pray: “O Heavenly Father, please send the Holy Spirit into my life and fill me up as much as I need, fill me until I overflow with His presence and power. In the name of my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ I ask You my Heavenly Father. Amen” Your Heavenly Father longs to fill you my friend. Receive the Holy Spirit in faith and watch what He does in and through you throughout the day. Keep a journal and make notes of your prayers and petitions and your encounters throughout the day. You’ll be amazed what God will do in and through you. He’s longing to get you all fired up today. So many believers believe that being filled is automatic or a ONCE OFF event, but the LORD wants to give us so much, but so few seek and ask for what He longs to give.

P.P.S. PLEASE PRAY FOR Anya. We met Anya whilst out sharing the Good News on the Streets in West Norwood, and she promised to come to church, which she did for the first time on Easter Sunday, then she came again two days ago on Sunday. Yesterday (Monday), as I was on my way to the Prayer Meeting, I met Anya who’d bumped into my wife, she was crying, as was my wife, Anya’s baby boy Alexander had died in Hospital that morning whilst undergoing a routine scan. Oh my friends, I can’t tell you the shock. I just embraced Anya. My wife and I prayed for her and continued to comfort her for a while. It’s amazing the PEACE the Lord has given to Anya, but it’s still very raw indeed. What amazing timing the LORD has, but we’re going to keep on praying He’ll bring Anya and her husband and extended family closer to Himself. Please also pray for us, the Christian Community and Family of the Lord in St Luke’s, that we can pour out His grace and love towards Anya. Amen.

 

Similar Topics:

Sharing is Caring: Why we shouldn’t hide our light.

The Light Shines in the Darkness: The people walking in Darkness have seen a great light.

Be Active In Sharing Your Faith: What happens in the saint who shares the Good News…

YOU Are the Church: How Christians have always been called to go and be the ‘church’ in the world. OIKOS.

 

 

You were made to last forever, eternity.

God doesn't believe in Athiests, Eternity in your heart, life after death,

Daily Spirit & Word. 715: Immortality. Eternity.

God Made YOU to Last Forever.

Why did God send a flood to destroy all human beings on the Earth?

“If you were to destroy the belief in immortality in mankind, not only love but every living force on which the continuation of all life in the world depended, would dry up at once.” Fyodor Dostoevsky.

Good morning my friends, I’ve been thinking. Tonight we’re going out to share the Gospel with folks on the streets and one of the most common beliefs today is; “This life is all there is”… You know something, I think good old Fyodor has a point. Many people today will proudly proclaim, “I don’t believe in life after death or Heaven or Hell”… They think this life is all there is, there’s nothing after death, you just cease to exist.

However, we can quite clearly see that those who do believe such things, get depressed, commit suicide, have no hope and give up on life. Why? Because if there is no afterlife, then there’s no real point to continuing your existence upon this earth. Love and life itself is just some kind of illusion.

Thankfully it is quite easy to correct this false and foolish thinking.

Ecclesiastes 3:9-13 (NIV)
9  What does the worker gain from his toil?
10  I have seen the burden God has laid on men.
11  He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.
12  I know that there is nothing better for men than to be happy and do good while they live.
13  That everyone may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all his toil—this is the gift of God.

God “has set eternity in the hearts of men”: That means everyone knows deep-down in the core of their being that this life is not all there is. We may deny this eternal truth, we may pretend, we may protest, we can argue, but the fact remains that God has Created mankind with a deep knowledge that ETERNITY, life after death, the soul goes on forever.

However, there are good reasons for denying the immortality of the soul. Because if we don’t believe in afterlife then we can just live as we please now, there’s no one or nothing to whom we must give an account of the way we live, and that’s what we’re seeing in the world today. If there is no afterlife, then this life is all that counts and you’ve got to enjoy it as much as possible. People call this kind of thinking “Enlightened” or “The enlightenment”, but in reality is a darkening, a drawing deeper and deeper into the deepest darkness. Without God there is only darkness and oblivion. When people do what they want, they’ll throw off all moral restraints. Not only that, but they want and expect everybody else to do the same as well.

Ephesians 4:17-19 (NIV)
17  So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. 18  They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. 19  Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more.

My friends, this kind of thinking is not new or enlightened: People have been doing this since the time of Creation, but when they did, they brought swift judgement from Heaven upon their heads. This kind of thinking and way of living is what brought the first flood upon the Earth.

Genesis 6:5-6 (NIV)
5  The LORD saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. 6  The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain.

Genesis 6:5-8 (NJB)
5  Yahweh saw that human wickedness was great on earth and that human hearts contrived nothing but wicked schemes all day long.
6  Yahweh regretted having made human beings on earth and was grieved at heart.
7  And Yahweh said, ‘I shall rid the surface of the earth of the human beings whom I created—human and animal, the creeping things and the birds of heaven—for I regret having made them.’
8  But Noah won Yahweh’s favour.

God’s heart was “filled with pain”, He was “grieved at heart”. It hurts God’s feelings when those He created deny Him or their high calling. When we live like we want and pretend there’s no one to whom we must give an account. That’s why the Lord brought the flood upon the Earth and it’s why He’s going to eventually destroy His Creation and start all over again (one day).

You see my friends, God does not believe in Atheists, He knows they are simply living in denial.

Dictionary Meaning of “Immortality”:

  • 1) The quality or state of being immortal.
  • 2) Perpetual life after death.

Synonyms: Afterlife, Hereafter, Permanence, Permanency,

Antonyms: Mortality (Mortal).

You were made to last forever.
But like those batteries that eventually loose their power, so we too will one day, run out of life. But that’s not the END, your eternal soul will live on and on for all eternity. If you were to die tonight, where would you be spending that Eternity?

Though mankind is not now immortal, because of Adam and Eve’s decision to disobey God’s Command, we’re all infected with the same sin disease and cannot live forever, which was God’s original intent for human beings. However, there is part of our human nature that will live forever and that is our Soul, it goes on beyond the grave. Though our flesh and bones will die and decay, the soul is the part of us that lives forever.

We need to make everyone aware of the fact that they are going to have to face God after they die.

Hebrews 9:27 (NIV) “Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgement, …”

“After That” i.e. After death, we come face-to-face with the Living God. He’s going to bring out our records: What we’ve done and what we’ve thought and Judge us.

God sees our inmost thoughts: (Psalm 139)

Psalm 139:1-16 (NIV) For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.
1  O LORD, you have searched me and you know me.
2  You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3  You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
4  Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.
5  You hem me in—behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.
6  Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.
7  Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
8  If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9  If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10  even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
11  If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,”
12  even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.
13  For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
15  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
16  your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

During the 2012 Olympic Games in London, there were areas in Cities all over the UK you could go and watch them as they happened on BIG Screens. In shopping areas and town squares town Councils had erected huge screens. Imagine having your life showing on a screen like that for everyone to see. But what could be worse than that? Can you imagine what it would be like to have your thought-life on display for everyone to see, right now? Embarrassing or what? Your thoughts about people on display for everyone to know what you’ve been thinking about them. Well one day it will be, unless you repent and have your records washed / erased away.

When you repent and trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour: All your sins are washed away. You are given a brand new start in life. This is why it’s so good to come to Jesus. You can actually feel clean on the inside when Jesus washes your sins away. It’s as if you’ve never sinned. But from the moment you are washed clean, Jesus wants you to live a New Life in His Spirit. A holy life is possible when you come to Jesus every day and received the fullness of the Holy Spirit. We need Jesus every day.

Praise the Lord for the Eternity He’s planted within your heart.

When we compare our life to eternity we can see why the Lord has given us His Word: The Word “BIBLE” = Basic, Instruction, Before, Leaving, Earth… There is life after death, but what kind of life can we expect? With Jesus as our Lord NOW, we’re promised wonders we couldn’t even dream about.

I’ll finish off today with one of the most wonderful promises in God’s Word:

 “However, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him” 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NIV)

Have a wonderful day with the Lord Jesus,

Don.

P.S. If you are free tonight and around West Norwood in London, you are welcome to come and join us as we go out to share the Gospel with those who don’t yet know Jesus Christ as Lord. We’re meeting at 5.00pm at St Luke’s Church, West Norwood, London. If you can’t come, please commit to praying for us and for those whom we meet, that they’ll come to know Jesus as Lord. Amen!

Ecclesiastes 3:11  He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.

ETERNITY

Why Did Jesus Die On The Cross?

Sharing the Good News with Graham on Good Friday

Daily Spirit & Word: 711: Why Did Jesus Need To Die?

“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free”

He came to set us free from sin, self, Satan, God’s wrath and the Judgement to come.
Without Jesus Christ’s death upon the Cross, we’d still be; in our sins, rulled by self, slaves to Satan and sin, objects of God’s wrath and anger against sin and ripe for His Holy Judgement to come.

If we submit to Christ as Lord and turn from sin and experience His Salvation: Then we’ll escape and be set completely free.

Galatians 5:1 (NIV) “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”

Enslaved: Yesterday, before we set out on the Good Friday Walk of Witness, I arrived early at church to pick up the crosses we carry and was waiting for David and John who’d agreed to carry them. As I waited there was a man who’d arrived to get some food at the Foodbank. He was a regular visitor, but I’d never shared the Gospel with him before. We’d been chatting about lots of normal stuff, the weather, the sunshine, winter and Springtime being his favourite time of the year. I asked him if he knew what day it was. He looked puzzled and said, “It’s Friday?” I said, “Yes but what Friday?” He said, “Foodbank Friday”… We both laughed our loud. I asked, “Graham, were you aware that today is one of the most holy days in the Christian year? It’s called Good Friday, do you know why?” He answered, “Oh yes, that’s when Jesus died on the Cross”…
“Do you know why Jesus died Graham?” I asked. He said, “I don’t know, it was a cruel thing to do, because I know that Jesus was a good man”…
I said, “Jesus died for you and me Graham, He took our place on the Cross, but do you know why?” He said, “I don’t know why Jesus would die for me”…
Then I took Graham through God’s Commandments one by one, it was at that point in our conversation that David arrived. Then we both continued to witness to Graham. I think I was on the 3rd Commandment by that stage. “Blasphemy: Taking the Lord’s Holy Name and using it as a swear word: Saying OMG or Jesus in a conversation when you are not praying to Him, but using it instead of a swear word”

Do you know what Graham said?, “I’d never do that, I’d never Blaspheme Jesus or God”… He was blissfully unaware that he’d been doing it from the moment that I met him and began talking with him. So I gently pointed it out to him and he was genuinely shocked. He said, “So I’ve been blaspheming when I say Jesus Christ or Jesus H Christ or Jesus?” I said, “Yes Graham, it’s using God’s Name in an unholy way”…

You know some people, trying to be nice, think that saying “Jesus Christ” or “Jesus” is better than saying F—k or Sh-t… it’s less offensive and you can get away with it, but it’s taking the Holy Name of God and using it as a swear word. It’s taking the God who gave you life and bringing Him down to an disgusting level of a dirty swear word. That’s why it’s Blasphemy. You know that Commandment? Exodus 20:7 (NIV) “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name. “

David and I led Graham to an awareness of his need for Jesus Christ on Good Friday. We encouraged him to turn from his sin in repentance, letting go of sin and trusting in Jesus, and be saved from God’s wrath to come. To trust in Jesus and His love, when He gave His life upon the Cross, taking our place and dying for us. Graham thanks us for showing him why Jesus needed to die upon the Cross. Yesterday was a Good Friday for Graham.

We then picked up the Crosses and walked to Tulse Hill to meet everyone for the walk of witness. It brought fresh meaning to Jesus statement and command, “Take up your Cross daily and follow Me”…

Have an AWESOME Easter Weekend.
Note: Graham was enslaved by sin and he didn’t even realise it. There are so many, countless thousands, who are unaware of their need of Jesus Christ. They are trapped in all kinds of sin and wickedness that offends a Holy and Righteous God, they are storing up His wrath for the Day of Judgement. They don’t know why Jesus needed to die upon the Cross, but it was for our FREEDOM that Christ has set us free. Jesus wants to set people free today. So let’s be prepared at all times to share the Greatest News they are ever likely to hear, they’ll thank you when they meet you in Heaven.

Praise the LORD for Gospel conversations.

Praise the LORD for Good Friday

What a walk of witness too, so many came from all over West Norwood, Dulwhich and Tulse Hill. I’m praying now that next year we’ll have to close off the road because of the multitude of souls walking for Jesus. Amen!
Don.

The Fragrance of Life or The Stench of Death

The World hated Jesus, don't be surprised when it hates you too

Daily Spirit & Word: 708: Smell: Life or Death

Dear Christian Don’t Be Surprised.

“If the World Hated Jesus, that it hates you too.”

When you are not surprised or shocked, then you’ll be able to LOVE them and LEAD them to Jesus.

Good morning my friends. On Good Friday (This Friday) we’re going on a Walk of Witness through the streets of London. We’re walking like in Triumphal Procession, because of what Christ Jesus did for us upon the Cross. But don’t be Surprised or Shocked that the World doesn’t like it one little bit, because;

to ONE: We are the Smell of Death.
to Another: We are the FRAGRANCE of LIFE…

2 Corinthians 2:14-17 (NIV) “But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. 15 For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. 16 To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task? 17 Unlike so many, we do not peddle the word of God for profit. On the contrary, in Christ we speak before God with sincerity, like men sent from God.”

To those who don’t yet know Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, Master and Friend, then my dear friends, don’t be shocked or surprised that to them, we who do love the Lord are like a bad smell of death under their noses.

Dead Mother’s Day Flowers: Yesterday my wife finally began throwing out some of her Mother’s Day flowers, she just loves to get lots of flowers on Mother’s Day, but the water in one of the containers was reeking really bad. As I took them up to the compost heap, I got some of the liquid on my hands, then inadvertently rubbed my nose, it stank. No I mean it really, really was STINKING. I had to run into the house quickly and wash my face off… Yuckkkkyyyyyy….

To the people of this world who’ve yet to submit their lives over to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, we Christians are just like that bad smell under my nose. Yesterday, I wanted to get away from that smell as quickly as I could, but I couldn’t because it was right under my nose, right under it… And it’s because followers of Jesus are like a bright shining light, which reminds the world of God’s righteousness, of their sin, of their need to get right with God, that we are that bad smell of death.

I don’t know if you’ve ever smelt a dead animal or person before, but it’s a horrible stink. It’s the kind of smell you’ll never forget and it stays with you for a long time. Even after you’ve had a bath, you’re imagination thinks you can still smell it on you. “The smell of death” what a horrible thing for the Bible to say… The Lord told me the other day, “Donald, you stink”… I said “What do you mean Lord”… then I Googled, stinking people in the Bible… Google is amazing… But so is God’s Word: It’s the TOP ranking Google search every single day. People want to know what the Bible says about stuff. I don’t know if Google will admit that???? But when I searched “Stinking People In The Bible” Google came up with some astonishing things.

When I did that search I came across a sermon by John McArthur about Lazarus: A man in the Bible who’d died and was dead four days, at the end of those four long days, Lazarus body had begun to decay and was stinking…

So my friends, do not be surprised if this world hates you as much as it hated the Lord Jesus Christ.

One of the reasons it hates you is because you do not belong to this world.

You are an alien and a stranger in this world, you’re just passing through. Just like those poor Syrian refugees who’re passing through Greece and Macedonia to get to Germany and the rich countries of the North. You are passing through to get to your own rich Homeland, Heaven. So you don’t belong to this world and it hates you because you are not one of it’s citizens. But you are an Ambassador of Heaven: An Ambassador has Diplomatic Immunity in this world. Praise be to God.

Jesus warned us that this world will hate us:

John 15:18-21 (NIV)
18 “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.
19 If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.
20 Remember the words I spoke to you: ‘No servant is greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also.
21 They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the One who sent me.

The reasons why the World Hates Christians are too numerous to mention, but it’s mainly because they’re not ONE with God through His Son Jesus Christ.

BUT, WAIT, THERE’S GOOD NEWS TOO:
Because, we are also, “THE AROMA OF CHRIST”

Yet to those who are being saved, we are the wonderful aroma of Christ.

Do you like wonderful aromas?

  • Like cooking bread in the morning.
  • Like freshly brewed coffee.
  • Like the smell of cakes baking in the oven, WONDERFUL all over the house.
  • Like the smell of onions on a cold day.
  • Like the smell of roses on a warm Summer’s day,
  • Like the fragrance roasting lamb… (Join with us tomorrow night as we celebrate the Lord’s Last Supper with Roasted Lamb)…
  • Like a bacon sandwich with crispy grilled bacon.

We are the aroma of Christ to those who are on their way to Salvation.

But just a little word of warning, we shouldn’t be surprised when the WORLD hates us, but loves those who tell them they are OK.

CAUTION: THE WORLD LOVES FALSE PROPHETS…

“If you belong to the world, it will love you as it’s own” John 15:19.

It loves pretend ministers who’ll assure them “everything is OK between you and God” when they are really far away from God, cut off because of their sinful condition.
It loves pretend ministers who’ll give false hope, false assurance and a false Gospel. “Just believe in Jesus” Satan loves false converts because He knows they are headed for Hell to be with Him forever. You see my friends, it’s possible to believe in Jesus and not be SAVED.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+7%3A21-23&version=NIV

Matthew 7:21-23 (NIV)
21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’
23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

I witnessed this, a false prophet, with my own eyes the other day. Deep in my heart I grieved for those to whom false assurance was delivered. Thankfully, I’d shared about the need for; repentance, faith and trust in Jesus beforehand. The TRUTH is always stronger than fiction or false hope. Yet I also noted the nodding heads of people in the crowd who’d been won over by the false messages of “Being OK with God already”… The people of this world, those who belong to the world, LOVE messages that will massage their false hope and foolish thinking that God accepts all people, no matter what they’re like. He will not, because one reading of Jesus words in the Bible will correct that false assumption, i.e. “Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord” will enter the Kingdom of Heaven” Matthew 7:21.

“Peace, Peace, when there is NO PEACE” Jeremiah 6:13-14. The eternal cry of the FALSE Prophet and FALSE Convert… They imagine they are at peace with God, when in reality their sins have cut them off from the Living God. Nobody can enter into Heaven covered in sin, sin contaminates and has the stench of death upon it, “The soul who sins will die” Ezekiel 18:20….. Not speaking of mortal death, but eternal death and confinement in Hell. It’s no wonder that Christians have the fragrance of death to those who refuse to repent and trust the Saviour. If a person’s name is not written in the Lambs book of life, they will be cast into the lake of fire with Satan and all his demons. Revelation 21:27 (NIV) “Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”

How do we know if we are SAVED? Mark 1:15. Have you; forsaken sin, repented of sin, turned and trusted in Jesus Christ for forgiveness of sin and Salvation from Sin? He died upon the Cross to make your forgiveness possible, but it’s not automatic, we’re not forgiven just because we believe He died for sins of the world. Even Satan believes that, but we are forgiven when we repent of those sins and trust (take) Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour. Then we can be born of God’s Spirit… When you receive Christ as Lord, the Holy Spirit comes in and takes up residence in your life, giving you new life, new hope and new beginning with God. You’ll KNOW if you’ve been born of the Spirit of God. He really does give you a PEACE that the World cannot understand or accept. John 1:12-13, John 15, John 17.

We live in a world that hates righteousness, it hates God’s standards of goodness and morality, and it hates those people whom the Lord has chosen out of this world to a better life, a life that says, “NO! to the world’s ways of living” Ephesians 5:8. Those who respond to His call to go forth and proclaim the Good News are either; the smell of death or the fragrance of life. 2 Corinthians 2:14-17.

You are the fragrance of LIFE to those whom the Lord is saving.

He’s calling people to faith and trust in Jesus Christ, those people who are going to be saved will smell a sweet fragrance when you proclaim the Good News. You are like their FAVOURITE Scent.

So no matter who you are dear Christian, you STINK, either in a nice way or a bad way, but you STINK all the same.
Be a really good stinky sheep of the Good Shepherd today, and determine in your heart that you’ll be obedient to His Command and share the light, share the Good News that can bring life to the dead. The people of this world are those whom Isaiah talked about, “The People walking in Darkness …” Isaiah 9:2.  They’ll see a GREAT LIGHT when you proclaim the Gospel. Faith comes by hearing the Good News about Jesus. Romans 10:17.

Yes this world will hate you, but there are a few who’ll be SAVED, by the words that can bring life to the dead. You smell of death, not your own stench, but it’s the DEATH that they’ll experience if they were to die in their sins, that’s what the world smells my friends their own stench of death upon their flesh. “He Stinketh Lord” John 11:39 KJV.  No wonder it hated Christ and if it hated Christ, then be sure of this, the world will hate you too, if you belong to Christ. John 15:18-21.

It’s my hope and prayer that we’ll all see many people coming out of the darkness into His wonderful light. It’s always a great joy when a sinner repents and trust the Saviour and we see a transformed life. However, don’t be surprised or shocked if the world hates it when you proclaim Jesus Christ as the only way to be saved in the world today. It hates that message with a vengeance. Yet Jesus declared boldly, “I AM the way, and the Truth and the Life, no man can come to the Father but by me”… John 14.

So my friends, don’t be surprised or shocked that the world hates you, it’s because they don’t know the Father or the Son whom He sent upon His rescue mission. Love them into God’s Kingdom. Amen!

May the Lord Jesus Christ bless you, and I hope and pray that you have an awesome stinky day 🙂
Don.

P.S. I’ve not posted for a few days, because I needed to rest my hands. On Monday morning I couldn’t grip anything, my hand was in agony. On Tuesday (Yesterday) morning it swelled up and was hot. Today, Wednesday, it’s almost back to normal and I can type again. I thank that Lord for His healing. I thank my brother Matthew, a member of my fellowship whom I asked to pray for healing. From that moment on it started to get better. Praise the Lord! If you have anything wrong with your body today, go to a brother or sister in Christ and get them to pray over you in the Name of Jesus Christ. Believe that the LORD Jesus Christ hears you when you pray in faith.

P.P.S If you are FREE tonight: Come and learn to share the Good News the way that Jesus did. We’re meeting at St Luke’s Church @5.00pm for training and then going out onto the streets of London to share the Good News of the Gospel with folks. It’s always awesome when we see how Jesus is with us as we go.

Don’t Be Surprised:

1 John 3:11-15 (NIV)
11
 This is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another.
12  Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous.
13  Do not be surprised, my brothers, if the world hates you.
14  We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death.
15  Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him.

 

Praying For Putin

Take up your Cross Daily

Daily Spirit & Word: 706: Praising The Lord For Putin.

Praying For Those In Authority.

Good morning my friends, I woke up with a WOWzer! in my heart today, because President Putin has announced that Russian Troops will be pulling out of Syria.

Praise the Lord, because this is a real answer to prayer.

You know my friends, The LORD wants you to be praying for your own leaders too?

1 Timothy 2:1-8 (NIV) Praying For Those In Authority.
1 I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone—
2  for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.
3  This is good, and pleases God our Saviour,
4  who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.
5  For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,
6  who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time.
7  And for this purpose I was appointed a herald and an apostle—I am telling the truth, I am not lying—and a teacher of the true faith to the Gentiles.
8  I want men everywhere to lift up holy hands in prayer, without anger or disputing.

You know when you’ve been praying for something, but because it is so fantastically good, you wonder in your heart if it’s going to be possible? Well, for ages I’ve been seeking the Lord for Russia and for President Putin. After all the Word of God encourages us to pray for those in Authority. I’ve been praying that Russia would be at real PEACE with the West and that this conflict in Syria would come to an end.

Of course the Peace that I’m praying for is totally different from not just fighting, I’m asking the Lord to send a massive Revival to Russia, China, America, The Middle East, Iran, Iraq, Syria and India. When I read or watch videos about people coming to trust Jesus it warms my heart no end.

Tinge of Reality: I know that the Lord has promised just before He returns in glory things in this world are not going to get better, but worse and how the love of most will grow cold towards the Lord and His people. I know that, but I’m not going to stop praying for millions to come to faith and trust in Jesus Christ. Send REVIVAL Lord.

Last night at our monthly PCC Meeting, I shared about how sometimes we pray.

My wife is not very technically minded. She’s pressed her mouse button to get something to print. It didn’t work, so she pressed the mouse button again. Still the printer didn’t print, so she pressed it again and again and again… Then she shouted for me to come, “Donald, the Printer is NOT working!”

I trudged up the stairs, because this is a recurring problem. I asked my wife, “Darling did you wait for a little while for it to begin printing before you pressed the button again?” She said, “Of course I did”… I walked over to the printer and looked at it. That’s all I did, look at it, then it began to print her document, and another and another, until we had reams of unwanted prints. She just looked at me and said, “Don’t say a word”… LOL

I think sometimes we PRAY, like my wife presses her mouse button.

We ask the Lord for something, and just before He’s about to answer us, we PRAY for the same thing again, then just before He is about to answer us, we pray again. When all the time the Lord is working behind the scenes, getting ready to answer our prayer, we’re bothering Him. Can you imagine God saying, “Stop pressing your mouse button, I heard you the first time”?…

Oh LORD, I just want to thank You and praise You for Russia and the answer to prayer. I know that Syria is not fully at PEACE yet, but Oh LORD, thank you for the encouragement. Thank you for President Putin, let Him experience your blessings in his life Lord. Peace is such a precious thing, bless Russia and President Putin. I’m praying NOW for President Assad.

Someone has suggested that we’d be suckers if we believe every word that comes out of President Putin’s mouth, but, sadly, that’s probably true of many Politicians. They all seem to say one thing, but mean another. However, the fact that he’s now pulling the troops means thousands of Civilians will be more at peace in their land, because Russian bombing will stop.

Praying For Revival:

Let’s get on our knees for President Assad in prayer to the LORD. Syria needs a lasting peace and a mighty outpouring of Holy Spirit Revival. Pray for all those brave Christian brothers and sisters in Jesus who remained in Syria throughout this dangerous conflict, and the countless thousands who’s homes, communities and infrastructure have been devastated by the bombing of both Russia and Assad and the American led team bombing ISIS. Pray for all who’ll trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour in the coming weeks.

Can you imagine what the world would be like if Putin and Assad became believers in Jesus? It may sound fantastical, but that’s what I’m praying for, “Oh Lord lead Putin and Assad to faith and trust in You” Amen.

Don’t stop praying for your own leaders; President Obama in America, David Cameron and Jeremy Corbin here in the UK. After all God has declared “This is good, and pleases God our Saviour, Who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth” 1 Timothy 2:3-4.

Praying With Jesus Every Day.

Did you know that you can have a meeting with Jesus every day?

Luke 9:23-25 (ANIV)
23  Then he said to them all: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.

24  For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it.
25  What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?

If you were invited by the Queen of England to breakfast every day at 6.30am, you’d probably be there right? Well my friends, Jesus wants to meet with you every single day. Prayer is so important for your daily Christian life, you’re going to need Him throughout the day. Are you FOLLOWING JESUS today? When we get baptised we go down into the water and die to ourselves, when we come up out of the water, we’re living for the Lord. We’re NEW in Christ and we’re to die to self daily, not just at our baptism. Jesus won’t ask you if you got baptised, but if you died to self. So say to your Pillow when it wants to keep your head in it’s soft embrace, “NO Mr Pillow, I’m going to meet with Jesus now”… LOL

Don’t just pray for others to have REVIVAL, get one yourself. Amen!

Have an awesome exciting day, be praying to the Lord for many wonderful things, don’t give up, but also don’t forget that mouse button doesn’t need to keep being pressed again and again, the LORD heard you the first time you prayed. Amen!

Don.

 

How to remain in Christ’s Love

Contending for the faith once for all entrusted to the saints

Daily Spirit & Word: 703: Jude’s Encouragements.

Build Yourselves Up In Your Most Holy Faith.

How to Remain in Christ’s Love.

Good morning my friends, I enjoyed a wonderful day off yesterday in the garden pulling up blackberry brambles that had spread like wildfire, creeping into the cracks of a rockery that once contained a pond. It’s amazing how the weeds spread and do so much damage. Last year I couldn’t do much in the garden because of a sore back, but now I’m almost free from pain, it’s an amazing joy to be able to be active again. Yet I’m surprised by just how invasive the weeds in London are.

Jude 1:20-21
20  But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.
21  Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.

As I read through Jude this morning, I could almost physically hear the Lord Jesus Christ in my head, saying, “Remain in My Love”

  • Where did Jesus say that?
  • What did He mean?
  • What does Jude mean? “Keep yourselves in God’s love”

Jesus said it: In His Awesome Teaching On the Vine and Branches.

John 15:7-16
7  If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.
8  This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
9  “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.
10  If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love.
11  I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.
12  My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.
13  Greater love has no-one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
14  You are my friends if you do what I command.
15  I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.
16  You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.

Jude epistle (God’s Word) wants us to know that we must “REMAIN” in the Love of Jesus Christ. That we must keep building ourselves up in the most holy faith.

He starts his letter by reminding those to whom he’s writing that we’re in a BATTLE, there is CONTENTION about what “THE FAITH” is. Many have entered into Christ’s members and twisted the pure Gospel that was once delivered to the saints.

Our BATTLE or CONTENTION:

It’s not over church decoration, pew placement, chair arrangement, the worship band singing too loud or too quiet. Nor is it the latest whole church campaign, but it is a real CONTENTION about the faith that has been handed down and entrusted to us from the Apostles and our Lord Jesus Christ. We really must keep up the battle, when we see error we must expose it, because so many youngsters in the faith are being drawn away and enticed into false Gospels. Remembering of course that our battle is NOT against flesh and blood, i.e. not people, but against spiritual forces of evil.

Jude 1:3 “Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.”

The Faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.

We have been entrusted with the Glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ.

It’s our most holy duty to preserve the whole Gospel and to CONTEND for this faith entrusted to our care.

We see the Gospel being partially delivered in the media.

A partial Gospel is a watering down of the full Gospel message.

Even our Prime Minister says quite openly “Britain is a Christian Country”… but his government is the first in history to want to monitor, control and dictate what we are teaching in our Sunday Schools, enlisting OFSTED to ensure that we’re NOT radicalising youngsters. He wants us to promote British Values: but many of Britain’s Values are not “Christian” or “Biblical” values.

For instance: forcing mothers who’ve got young children back into work. Who’s the best person to be looking after infants? I believe with all my heart that it’s not pre-schools, but their own mothers. Yes toddler groups are great for encouraging youngsters to mix and learn to be sociable, but pre-schools? No, I believe mothers not nurseries are best for our infants. They need the love that only a mother can give. We should be encouraging parents and supporting them in bringing up their own children.

Benefits Cuts: This government has given TAX BREAKS to those who are the richest in society, and cut the benefits that the poorest people receive. They want to force people into work, but we’ve known countless numbers of people who are practically unemployable because of their mental condition or social circumstances, who’ve been sanctioned and had their benefits stopped all together. British Values????

Bombing Syria: IS: The UK Governments (British Values) voted to bomb Syria. But Jesus did not say, “Bomb your enemies” He said, “Love your enemies, do good to those that hate you”. ISIS definitely hate everything that the UK stands for, but we’re to LOVE our enemies. Show them Christ’s LOVE not weapons of war. I know it hard, but that’s what we’re called upon by Jesus to do. British Values??? Let’s LOVE each other as Jesus has loved us and gave His life for us.

  • Christian values: Parents bring up your children in the ways of the Lord.
  • Christian values: feed the poor, love your enemy, do good to those that hate you, look after widows and orphans.
  • There is a BATTLE going on for the “Faith once and for all time entrusted to the saints”..

BTW: Those “saints” in Jude’s letter are not those who’ve died and been made saints by the Roman Catholic Church, but every single Christian who’s been set free from sin by the Lord Jesus Christ. It’s you and me, if you’ve trusted Christ as your Lord and received Him as your Saviour: You are the SAINT to whom Jude is writing.

What is that FAITH we’re to CONTEND for?

Jesus tells us clearly in John 15:16 “I chose you and appointed you”

When you became a Christian it wasn’t your idea to follow Jesus. It was because Jesus was already, by the Holy Spirit, drawing you to Himself. He chose you to become a believer, a follower and a disciple.

It was the LORD’s initiative that brought you to trust: That Jesus died upon the Cross for the sins of all mankind, because of God’s love, He rose again from the dead and now reigns in Heaven. He’s calling all people to REPENT and receive forgiveness for their sins, so that they can escape the judgement that coming. They’ll be SAVED from Hell if they repent and trust the ONLY Saviour of Mankind.

When Jesus chose you to become a Christian, His desire and our Heavenly Father’s desire, is that you BE FRUITFUL in your walk with Him.

How are we going to be “Fruitful”?

By remaining in His love… John 15:8-10…

How do we “remain in His love”?

By being obedient to His Commands. The Commands of Jesus Christ. John 15:10.

How do we know Jesus Commands?

By reading and understanding the WORD of God, by hearing the Word of God and by DOING the Word of God.

That is HOW we do what Jude is calling us to do:

Jude 1:20-21
20  But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.
21  Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.

We keep ourselves in God’s love and build ourselves up in the most holy faith, by praying in the Holy Spirit, obeying Christ’s commands in Scripture and wait for our Eternal life that He’s promised to all who live for Him.

  • Saints, we need to be in God’s WORD ourselves.
  • We need to gather together around God’s Word: To study it together (Discipleship).
  • We need to keep listening to Preachers who really do LOVE God’s Word and Jesus Christ as their LORD and Saviour.
  • We need to keep doing what God’s Word tells us.
  • That way we will build up our faith.
  • That’s the way we’re going to remain in Christ’s love.

When we do all of these things, then our Love for Jesus will grow stronger.

When we do all of these things, then our Love for our fellow saints in Christ will be enriched.

What did I learn on my day-off yesterday?

The Brambles will grow when we’re not looking.

The Weeds will spread, when not attended.

False Gospels and wrong teaching will creep into the church if we are not contending for the faith.

Jesus wants me to Contend for the faith once for all entrusted to the saints.

It’s a never ending battle to maintain the pure holy Gospel faith that has been entrusted to us, the Saints in Jesus Christ, we need to REMAIN IN CHRIST’S LOVE and keep building ourselves up in the most holy faith. We’ll be fruitful when we’re being obedient to Christ’s commands.

Keep going for Jesus my friends,

Contend for the pure Gospel once for all delivered and entrusted to the Saints: You are those Saints.

Have a glorious weekend.

Don.

Tomorrow’s Teaching: Do you know how much of a friend we have in Jesus?

John 11:49-52 (NIV)
49  Then one of them, named Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, spoke up, “You know nothing at all!
50  You do not realise that it is better for you that one man die for the people than that the whole nation perish.”
51  He did not say this on his own, but as high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the Jewish nation,
52  and not only for that nation but also for the scattered children of God, to bring them together and make them one.

 

The Let Us Statements in the Book of Hebrews

Going Deeper with God The Let Us, Lettuce, in the book of Hebrews

Daily Spirit & Word: 701: Lettuce Christians.

The Fantastic Fourteen “Let Us” in the Book of Hebrews.

I had a funny thought this morning, I know, I know, I get them all the time 🙂 I was quickly reading through the book of Hebrews and was struck by the number of time I came across the short phrase “Let us”… Then I remembered how when I was a young Christian I overheard an older, more mature, believer say, “I do wish the minister would stop saying ‘Let Us’ anyone would think we a salad Christians”. It makes me laugh out loud even today.

Then I Googled “Let Us in the Book of Hebrews”... WOWzer! GOOGLE It’s full of Lettuce  😛

So my friends, whenever you hear your Minister in his sermon saying “Let us”… Don’t go rolling your eyes, don’t go thinking to yourself “Here we go again”, because when your Minister says “Let us” he is in GREAT company, for God’s Word is choc-full of “Let us”… It seems to me that God wants those He’s chosen to belong to His family to allow Him to change them into confident and assured children.

He could have given a direct command from Heaven, instead He encourages us in much more gentle tones “Let us” as if He’s involved in it with us.

Here are the 14 “Let Us” Statements from the book of Hebrews.

Dwell upon and think about each one… “I LOVE LETTUCE” 🙂

Let us in the Book of Hebrews:

1) “Fear,” – Hebrews 4:1.

2) “Be diligent,” – Hebrews 4:11.

3) “Hold fast,” – Hebrews 4:14.

4) “Draw near with confidence to the throne of grace,” – Hebrews 4:16.

5) “leave elementary teaching,” – Hebrews 6:1. (Lettuce Leaves).

6) “Draw near,” – Hebrews 10:22.

7) “Hold unswervingly,” – Hebrews 10:23.

8) “Stimulate one another,” – Hebrews 10:24.

9 & 10) “Lay aside every encumbrance… and run with endurance,” – Hebrews 12:1.

11) “Fix our eyes on Jesus” – Hebrews 12:2.

12) “Be Thankful,” – Hebrews 12:28.

13) “Go out,” – Hebrews 13:13.

14) “Offer up a sacrifice of praise,” – Hebrews 13:15.

Every single “Let us” in the book of Hebrews is like a Divine invitation into the deeper Christian life. When we practice these encouragements, when we’re obedient to them, we are going to be so immensely blessed as brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ.

So the next time your hear it, don’t roll your eyes upwards, but let your heart be stimulated to KNOW you are HEARING God’s Word of exhortation to do something truly wonderful for Him, but in the doing it’s YOU that’s going to benefit.

Let us turn now to the Lord in prayer 🙂

I remember once having a “Bring and Share Supper”. We’re encouraged to bring something so that we can all share in a great big meal. When everyone had arrived, guess what we had? Nothing but salad, everyone had brought along LETTUCE and other salad vegetables. It was strange, but I’ve never forgotten our salad fellowship meal. Someone quipped that night, as prayers were offered, “Oh Lord Jesus Christ, we are just a few Salad Christians, Lettuce draw near with faith” Everyone laughed out loud. But we’re closer to Jesus Christ because of it.

But my friends, on this Wednesday morning, half-way through the week, LET US be encouraged to go deeper with Jesus.

  • Let us, Be full of God’s Spirit.
  • Let us, Be doers of God’s Word.
  • Let us, Take Christ’s yoke and burden, for His yoke is easy and His burden is light.
  • Let us, Go to Him, outside the camp, bearing the disgrace He bore for us.

Prayer: Oh Lord, let us be “Let us” Christians. Amen!

Have a wonderful day with Jesus.

Don.

P.S. Alpha last night was something special. We had the TALK on Faith. We discovered that the word “FAITH” is over used and undervalued, it’s misunderstood and misapplied. People call ‘religious’ people, “Faith Communities”, no matter what religion they come from. You know when you see the proverbial penny drop, well some people last night had that experience. At the end of the evening I said this; “There is a real difference between faith and FAITH”… Faith in Jesus Christ isn’t simply believing that He existed, died upon a cross for our sins, rose again from the grave and ascended into Heaven. That’s NOT saving FAITH, but merely intellectual assent. It’s just acknowledging the facts. However, saving FAITH is when we know all these things are true and then we respond to Jesus by putting our TRUST in Jesus for our SALVATION.

It’s a bit like this. You know that No2 Bus will take you to Brixton, but when the bus comes along, even though you read the sign at the front that says “Brixton”, you know it’s true, the bus has arrived, you see others getting aboard, but something is stopping you getting aboard.

My friends, to get to Heaven you need to exercise SAVING FAITH and put your trust in Jesus. Get aboard, stop doubting, believe that He can carry you all the way to Heaven.

P.P.S: Tonight: Street Witnessing: We’re going out tonight to share the Gospel on the Streets of West Norwood in London. Have you ever gone out to share the FAITH of Jesus Christ? You can come with us. You can be trained to share the Good News the way that Jesus did. Every time I go out, I’m a bit nervous to begin with, breaking the ice with complete strangers is never easy, but from long years of experience of doing just that, I know that Jesus is with me. He gives me His WORD in season for those who stop and chat. I’ve seen Him move upon people by His Spirit. I’ve seen His power at work in people to draw them to Himself. All because we’ve gone out in faith. Come! Come and share, because there are many people who are headed for Hell and don’t know it, their Eternal Destiny is in your hands. Jesus Commanded us to “GO” in His Great Commission. It was a call for every follower of Jesus to go out and share the Good News with everyone. How’s your faith sharing going? Don’t just be a pew-warmer on a Sunday, get your sleeves rolled up and get on with the work, it’s a JOY to share in Jesus Kingdom business of winning souls for Heaven. Sharing the Gospel is the MOST loving thing you could ever do for someone.

If you need ENCOURAGEMENT today.

Here are the Fourteen “Let Us” statements, they are encouraging verses from Hebrews.

(God’s Word is Choc Full of Lettuce 🙂 “Let Us”).

Hebrews 4:1 (NIV) Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it.

Hebrews 4:11 (NIV) Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no-one will fall by following their example of disobedience.

Hebrews 4:14 (NIV)  Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.

Hebrews 4:16 (NIV) Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Hebrews 6:1 (NIV) Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God,

Hebrews 10:22 (NIV) let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.

Hebrews 10:23 (NIV) Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.

Hebrews 10:24 (NIV) And let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds.

Hebrews 12:1 (NIV) Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

Hebrews 12:2 (NIV) 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.

Hebrews 12:28 (NIV) Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe,

Hebrews 13:13 (NIV) Let us, then, go to him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace he bore.

Hebrews 13:15 (NIV) Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that confess his name.

Did you notice the Lettuce Leaves in Hebrews 6:1? i.e. “Let us leave …”

“I LOVE LETTUCE”

The Fantastic Fourteen “Let Us” Statements in the Book of Hebrews.