EP25: A lazy sanctimonious Christian helps no one, ever, contrary to what Jesus called all of us to do.
Context: Matthew 15:1-14 [Amp]
A changed mind is a terrible thing to waste.
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I have NO idea how much time we have left. It all seems so dark and unattainable and scary. We spend our entire lives for whatever the epilogue is for us. The days are getting shorter, the nights are getting colder.
Actually, I’m talking about retirement.
The way of the world today, in the past couple of decades, has made it harder, if unattainable, to “retire” in the true sense. GONE are the days of the gold watch, pension, health insurance and life insurance that was freely given to long-time employees. GONE are the days of a job that allowed you to save money for a down payment on a house, saving for your kid’s college, or just being able to live until you die without starving or languishing in a subpar nursing home ALONE.
Now dump covid on that. That’s the retirement most Americans are looking at right now.
The way of the world is choking all of us, without apology, financially and spiritually. We are obsessed with the next dollar because it could be our last. I do not understand why the government steals our money all of our working lives just to push us off the edge, thanks for nothing. At times it keeps me up at night, steals my breath and my joy and my peace. The amount of pure evil is blinding.
We may be retiring soon but that doesn’t mean ministry is over. And it shouldn’t be for you, either. That is one thing that cannot be stolen from us. The promises of God and Gospel of Christ are relevant to a still dying world. We can never allow the enemy to surround us with lies ever again. We may not be able to age out the way we hoped so we’ll redeem the time, love our neighbor, restore that which was lost.
Someone, somewhere still needs to hear what God wants you to say. Speak up until your last breath.
Mine was FABULOUS. Really. Every lap around that mountain gives us the opportunity to learn, even if you’re doing the same thing over and over. This unscheduled “trip” was not a journey away from Jesus and ministry, but to clarify and make clearer the Man He is and the words in red.
Some of my mountain trip was my renewed interest in the Jesus movement from decades ago. The kind of hippie way of following Jesus seemed so pure and unencumbered. Yes, there were issues with the doctrine, but the essence was of it reminded me of the unhindered love of the Gospel preaching to every creature without fear.
We fear mean people. We fear backlash. We want ‘peace’ but not the peace that passes all understanding. I, too, wanted to be LEFT ALONE. But ministry is PUBLIC, so says the Book of Acts, which has no end until Jesus comes back.
So, what cool stuff did the mountain trip teach me?
Your opinion has VALUE.
It is acceptable to listen to and glean from other ministries.
Strengthening discernment is the best workout EVER.
No two ministries are ever exactly the same.
Love does not mean acceptance.
Perhaps the hardest thing for a Christian and Minister to do is accept who WE are rather than caving to others. And by that I mean other ministries or the sister who prays more or the brother that gives more, etc. YOU and I are completely unique in our walk with the Lord and we should give a great big HALLELUJAH for that! Jesus wants us to be fishers of men, not a bunch of Stepford wives and clones.
Christians use social media to demonize other Christians and ministries. Shame on them. God hears them. But didn’t I do the same thing “in the name of Jesus”? Sadly yes. But then the mountain showed up! Thank God for the mountain!
Believers do not have inherent light, but we do have reflective light. So let your light so shine, for He is our source, a public acknowledgement of Jesus. Angry social media armchair preachers are the clanging cymbals of “ministry”.
Governor Jerry Brown of California is pushing a pro-LGBTQ bill as quickly as he can through the California state assembly. This bogus anti-Bible bill now goes to the state Senate for a vote. If this heresy is passed, Assembly Bill 2943 could ultimately threaten free speech and freedom of religion for Christians in California, and perhaps spread to other liberal states like the cancer that it is. Trying to silence God has never gone well. The Bible clearly states that homosexuality is an abomination. That means ‘God said’, it is not an offhanded remark, nor was that a suggestion.
Is it coincidental that California is behind this attempt to silence God? The history of the the Great Azusa Street Revival, one of the greatest Pentecostal outpourings of recent history, is behind tightly closed doors, kept eerily silent, for now. Is Jerry Brown trying to erase the greatest revival of modern times? Is Brown purposely negating the Great Pentecostal Movement, forsaking the Gospel, just to appease the Gay Agenda? A resounding YES.
California is where one of the greatest revivals in human history was held, the Azusa Street Revival in Los Angeles:
“Christianity was forever changed by the Azusa Street revival in Los Angeles at the beginning of the last century. Services were held three times a day, 7 days a week during its glory days from 1906 to 1909. Led by an African-American pastor, William J. Seymour, the meetings were held in a run-down mission under the name Apostolic Faith.As unlikely as it seemed at the time, the Azusa Street revival was destined to become a major turning point in world Christian history…..Those humble believers who gathered at Azusa Street in 1906 could not have imagined the historic results of the revival they helped unleash in Los Angeles. Today, the worldwide Pentecostal movement is the recipient of many lasting, influential, and far-reaching legacies of the Azusa Street revival……The historical record shows that throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Africa the first reports of the new movement claimed that it began in Los Angeles under an African-American pastor…….Every classical Pentecostal movement around the world can trace its spiritual roots, directly or indirectly, to the humble mission on Azusa Street.” Read more here.
A visiting Baptist pastor said, “The Holy Spirit fell upon me and filled me literally, as it seemed to lift me up, for indeed, I was in the air in an instant, shouting, ‘Praise God,’ and instantly I began to speak in another language. I could not have been more surprised if at the same moment someone had handed me a million dollars.” Read more here.
All this being said, the Holy Spirit fell on Azusa Street in Los Angeles, creating the Assemblies of God, Church of God, Church of God in Christ, Foursquare Gospel, Pentecostal Holiness, to name just a few. History is history, God is not mocked, the Glory fell.
California may have forgotten it’s first Love, but now, more than ever, California needs the Gospel. TODAY. It would be pretty awful if they missed the greatest revival of all time, one that is soon to come, one that will define us all.
Regardless of what Jerry Brown espouses, homosexuality will always be an abomination, a sin against God. History is history, and the Bible is STILL the Bible, even if it becomes contraband.
To make sure I was correct, that I was reading scripture correctly, I asked a Pastor, with whom we are ordained, a question: Can Christians ‘judge’?
Jesus said, “Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment,” (John 7:24).
Christians take ‘judge righteously’ out of context, definitely making their own rules as they judge along. But remember that the Bible does give us ‘rules’ to judge by. For instance: homosexuality, abortion, idol worship, adultery, to name a few. As Christians, we are to ‘judge righteously’ THE SIN, not the sinner. Unfortunately, the opposite is the usual ‘norm’.
As a sinner, before salvation, I made many mistakes that were evil and should have been judged with righteous judgement. And in a perfect scenario, the person who called out my sin would lovingly follow up with the Gospel and leading me to the Lord. My conversion did not happen that way, but it should have. Judging without having Biblical precedence leads the sinner to see a wagging finger, not a loving gesture.
To answer the question I gave my Pastor, YES, we can and should judge, or discern, righteously especially to the brethren, the House of God, and the sinner. BUT it has to be the intention to set the sinner free, and to give the brethren correction if they sway from the Truth.
We are all accountable to a Holy God, saved or not.
“For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?” (1Peter 4:17)
In the spirit I saw a Fence
And it was without end.
I considered my defense,
But I could not judge.
As in my youth, I pled,
My appeal was not heard.
Who has my heart?
Where is my Love?
Then I heard Him from afar
As He came nigh,
“For I am on the Right side of the Fence
To make your paths straight.”
I had to learn what the Love of Christ really is. He was despised, a Man of sorrows,He took the beating we deserved. ONE DAY, I got it, I realized His love, throughout the horrific pain and hatred, HE STILL LOVED US, He died for ME. And while I still marvel at that, He ROSE and sat at the RIGHT hand of God, giving us the CHOICE of Eternal LIFE, if we only repent and accept Him as LORD. Yes, He ROSE from the grave, but He has NEVER left us:
Matthew 28:5-6: “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said.”
Matthew 28:18-20: And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. GO THEREFORE and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I AM WITH YOU ALWAYS, even to the end of the age.” Amen.
Thank YOU, Jesus.
“Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers,” 3John 2.
Happy Resurrection Day.
There has been increasing proof that the Abortion Wars are cloaked in religion, and Planned Parenthood, NARAL, NAF, and others have exploited this fact for decades. Over 85% of post abortive women identify with a ‘religion’. How much more evidence do we need to see that our Risen Savior is used to PROMOTE abortion by deceptive religions and denominations?
This post isn’t just about the sanctity of LIFE, this is about those that clothe themselves in religious garments advocating killing unborn life, outwardly deceiving women. Read more about the proabort pulpit here.
Jeremiah 17:9-10: v9 “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it? v10 I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings.”
The ‘Religious’ Coalition for Reproductive Choice is leading this deception to further the abortion agenda within religious circles. These zealots that repeat the abortion mantra have no interest in who Jesus really is; they see him as a man who lived and died, did some good things, never spoke above a whisper. Nothing can be further from the truth. The RCRC [and others] have made Jesus Christ a political figure, not a Savior. People want to know which religion or denomination that advocates for LIFE – but the short answer is don’t follow man, follow Jesus.
Jeremiah 18:7-10: v7 “The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, v8 if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it. v9 And the instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it, v10 if it does evil in My sight so that it does not obey My voice, then I will relent concerning the good with which I said I would benefit it.”
God forgives, religion condemns. But will the religious abortion wars repent? We pray that those who believe in aborting God’s creation will relent, repent, and serve God. That is always the hope. Christians with a true relationship with Jesus wants to see souls saved, not condemned to hell; judgement lies with God. I am a sinner saved by Grace, all have fallen short of the Glory of God. Then, even they who have advocated for millions of abortions, can be saved from a hell they deserved, the very same one I deserved before coming to Christ.
God does not forget, nor does He pass by sin without judgement. I assure you, God is quite secure in who He is, not who the sanctimonious believes He is. They have made God a puppet and Jesus a byproduct of Him just to satisfy their agenda to kill unborn children ‘without apology’.
Jeremiah 22:15-17: v15 “Shall you reign because you enclose yourself in cedar? Did not your father eat and drink, and do justice and righteousness? Then it was well with him. v16He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well. Was not this knowing Me?” says the Lord. v17 “Yet your eyes and your heart are for nothing but your covetousness, for shedding innocent blood, and practicing oppression and violence.”