For My Life

April 9, 2015

For My Life

In my last post, I talked about my week in Thomaston, Georgia and how much of a blessing it was to me. I want to talk, in this piece, about the staff of the “Be in Health” ministry and the teachers of the “For My Life” program.

First of all, everyone in this ministry, has dedicated their lives to God. This is evident from the check in time on Sunday to the celebration service at the end of the week on Friday night. This staff loves the Lord!

Secondly, they love people. If not, they wouldn’t have had the success that they have experienced over the last two decades. It is apparent that they are about helping others in their spiritual walk and in seeing healing of the mind, soul and body.

I wanted to share, however, one statement that was made last week by Mitch Griffin that impacted me. He said, “If God had a refrigerator, my picture would be on it.” This really “hit home” with me. And it built on the teaching that we had earlier in the week on “The Father’s Love.” God really is concerned with every aspect of our lives, even those that we think are inconsequential.

I, once again, highly recommend this ministry. I, also, would say that everyone should, at least once, spend a week at this place where God is honored and people are cherished.

iamchanged.com

April 6, 2015

Last week, I was in the small town of Thomaston, Georgia. I spent seven full days and part of two additional days at a church about an hour from Atlanta, Georgia. It was life-changing!

Back in January, an acquaintance told me about this place that specializes in healing of body and spirit. The church used to be called “Pleasant Valley Church.” Now, it’s called “Hope of the Generations Church.” The church has six pastors and the senior pastors are Dr. Henry Wright and his wife Donna.

They have been proclaiming this message of health for the body and soul for about twenty years at this current location. This past week, there were sixty-nine of us who came from all over the U.S. and from several nations (Germany, Australia and Canada).

The ministry that I was a part of last week is called “Be in Health.” The name comes from the Scripture verse which says, “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth” (3 John 2).  The five-day program is “For My life.”

I will elaborate further in future posts. I will say this, “I thank God for sending me there.”

Scripture quotations from The Authorized (King James) Version. Rights in the Authorized Version in the United Kingdom are vested in the Crown. Reproduced by permission of the Crown’s patentee, Cambridge University Press.

Repentance

January 29, 2015

Tim Duncan

For those of you who follow sports, you will remember (back in the good ‘ole days) that when a basketball player fouled his opponent, he would raise his hand to acknowledge his misconduct. That tradition has gone “the way of bobby socks,” however. Players in the NBA and NCAA never commit a foul, or so one would think in looking at their facial expressions (except for a few like Tim Duncan, pictured above). And so it is in our society today.

When something bad happens, in the political arena, it is always someone else’s fault. No person or party ever wants to take responsibility. The “buck” is always passed to someone else.

We see this in the Bible also. Adam blamed Eve. Eve blamed the serpent. No one wanted to say, “I did it.”

There was one example, however, in the Old Testament where a man said, “It was me.”
That man was David.

David had committed adultery and conspiracy to murder. But when confronted by the Prophet Nathan, he claimed responsibility. He didn’t try to shirk it off or use his power and position to get out of it.

The other thing that David did was repent, and we see this in his writing in the fifty-first Psalm. He was truly sorrowful for his sin, and, because of this, he is called, “a man after God’s own heart” (Acts 13:22).

David is an example for us all to follow. Although he wasn’t perfect, “when the foul was called, he raised his hand.”

Is Climate Change a Hoax?

January 8, 2015

Scott Sholar:

This is the third January in a row that I have posted this piece.

Originally posted on scottsholar:

     Once again, we find ourselves in the middle of a brutally cold winter. Imagine that, a winter that’s cold. Who has ever heard of such a thing?

     But I thought that the planet was getting warmer. You wouldn’t know it from the frigid temperatures across the country. I guess someone forgot to tell the mythological “Mother Nature” that it was supposed to be hot in January, at least according to the global warming alarmists.

     But you know, even the proponents of global warming know that the “jig is up” when it comes to this supposed warming of the planet. That’s why they have changed the jargon from “global warming” to “climate change.”

     Well, I’ve got some meteorological news for them: the climate changes four times a year and it’s called “seasons.” We’ve always had them, and I can name them: Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Stop…

View original 114 more words

The Creation Account

January 3, 2015

Some say that the Bible is just a good book of literature filled with interesting yet mythical stories. These same folks believe, sometimes, that moral lessons are found within Scripture, but they cannot grasp the idea that God’s Word could be taken “literally.” They scoff at the thought of a literal “Moses,” “Noah,” “Abraham,” or even “Jesus.” So if one should suggest that the Genesis 1 account of creation is, in fact, correct, the reply from these individuals might come in the form of a sneer or a chuckle. But is it really so hard to fathom that God did His splendid work in six days or six-thousand years?

Six years ago this past Fall, I spoke up, in a classroom setting, on behalf of “creationism.” I merely suggested that the Biblical account of creation should be given equal time with evolution in the public school system. The instructor of the class responded by saying, “To allow ‘creationism’ to be taught in public schools would be like going back to the medieval practice of ‘bloodletting.’” Oh really? So its okay to believe in a theory (with many holes, by the way), but foolish to believe that an omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent God spoke the worlds into being? I beg to differ, but I won’t use my words in rebuttal. The Bible says, “Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?…..But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong” (1 Corinthians 1:20, 27). To believe in the Bible’s account of creation is not foolish. On the contrary, it shows that one is, indeed, wise.

The problem with discounting the Biblical account of creation is that it becomes easier to discount other sections of Scripture also. By “chipping away” at this foundational part of God’s Word, the whole “building” begins to crumble. It “evolves” into the proverbial “slippery slope.”

I guess my question is this: “Can’t an all-powerful God do anything and in any time frame?” I would have to answer, “most definitely.” God says, of Himself, “‘I am the LORD, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?’” (Jeremiah 32:27).

Moses writes, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). Unfortunately, this version of creation does not fit in with man’s “enlightened” and “intellectual” advances. We have “progressed” past this type of backward thinking. There are, however, many who still hold to the truths of the Bible, and that, for me, is most encouraging.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Photo credit:  nps.gov

Originally published:  August 17, 2011

Polluted Land

December 31, 2014

Picture of Earth from Space

We are constantly barraged with news that our planet is under attack. Dirty air, unsafe drinking water, deforestation, oil spills and global warming are some of the terms used to describe the plight of the world’s ecosystems. The first “Earth Day,” about forty-five years ago, warned of a coming “ice age.” Pollution, of all sorts, was feared to be destroying all life across the globe. About the same time in history, however, a national “contamination” did begin, man-made in nature, that has destroyed life far beyond that of any ecological disaster. It has been an unequaled period of death and destruction that has dwarfed most wars, famines, genocides and any environmental catastrophe. Our land was, indeed, polluted.

In chapter four of the book of Genesis, we read of the account of Cain and Abel and of what transpired between the two brothers. Of course, we all remember Cain’s sarcastic response to God when confronted by his Creator, “‘Am I my brother’s keeper?’” (Genesis 4:9). But do we remember God’s reply to Cain?, “‘Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground’” (Genesis 4:10). Although the Ten Commandments had not been given to humanity, God still judged Cain for his sin. The land had been polluted with blood.

In the books of 2 Kings and 2 Chronicles, we are told about the most wicked king of Judah, Manasseh. The Bible describes one of his despicable acts in the following passage, “He sacrificed his sons in the fire…..” (2 Chronicles 33:6). In addition, “Manasseh also shed so much innocent blood that he filled Jerusalem from end to end…..” (2 Kings 21:16). Although the king eventually repented of his sin and turned from his awful conduct, God still judged the nation. Too much innocent blood had been shed, and the land had been polluted.

There aren’t as many specific things, in the Bible, that God says he hates as one might think. But one of them is “…..hands that shed innocent blood” (Proverbs 6:17). This is something that He detests.

This “plague” that descended upon our nation over four decades ago, however, has a rather innocuous name now: “choice.” But while it sounds rather benign, it has wiped out an entire generation. The estimates range from forty to fifty-million babies that have been denied the right to live since 1973. But if God heard the cry of the blood of one innocent man (Abel), does He not hear the cries of millions who have been erased from existence? My fear is that if our country stopped this practice today, God will still judge the nation because the land is polluted.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Photo credit:  universetoday.com

Originally published:  August 21, 2011

The Passion of the Christ

December 29, 2014

The-Passion-of-the-Christ-001.jpg

Ten years ago, a film was released that had an unprecedented spiritual impact on our world, “The Passion of the Christ.” Before its release, however, it received much criticism from many quarters. But surprisingly, the heaviest rebuff came from some in the Christian community. This puzzled me then, and it continues to baffle me now. How could the depiction of the last twelve hours of the life of Jesus, culminating with His resurrection, be offensive, especially to those who call themselves Christian?

 One reason for the denouncement of this movie was due to its graphic and violent themes. But for the last forty to fifty years, the motion picture industry has “majored” in graphic, violent and brutal films (Hollywood, by the way, wanted nothing to do with this movie). Anyone hear of “The Godfather,” “Pulp Fiction” or “Kill Bill?” Where was the outcry against these productions from the portions of the Christian community who came out against “The Passion?”

Six years ago, as I was leaving a classroom setting, I asked one of my instructors if he had seen the movie. His response was, “no, it was too bloody.” And I think that this is the main “rub” for some in the Christian community: the blood of Jesus. Unfortunately, many within the ranks of the faithful have taken the blood out of their hymns, out of their sermons and out of their churches and denominations. It is offensive to them. But without the blood of Christ, there is no Christianity, no forgiveness of sin and no hope.

Thankfully, this film is still changing lives just as it did back in 2004. Just as many came to faith in Christ when the film first appeared, people continue to experience liberation from the bondage of sin when this film is shown today. The Trinity Broadcasting Network is one of the outlets for the airing of “The Passion,” and, hopefully, they will continue to show the movie for many years to come (they usually show it multiple times during Easter week).

The Apostle Paul wrote in Galatians about “…..the offense of the cross…..” (Galatians 5:11). But it is only through the cross and the price that Jesus paid with His blood that humanity can truly rejoice. Yes, the crucifixion was a horrible way to die. The writer of Hebrews describes Jesus as “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 12:2). The Lord was willing to die a shameful and offensive death, and the purpose of this movie was to show the wonderful sacrifice that was made on our behalf.

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Photo credit:  http://www.theguardian.com

Originally published:  August 22, 2011

Merry Xmas!

December 23, 2014

When most Christians see or hear the phrase “Merry Xmas,” it, generally, brings about a negative response. And for most of my life, I was offended when I was confronted with this slogan that takes “Christ” out of “Christmas.”

But in my last year at Asbury Theological Seminary, I took a course in Koine Greek (the ancient Greek in which the New Testament was written). And when I found out that, in the Greek, “Christ” is spelled with a “chi” or an “X,” it changed my thinking somewhat on this issue.

Maybe this slogan came, originally, from this Greek spelling, “Ἰησοῦς  χριστός. ” “Jesus Christ.” And for those who are trying to remove “Christ” from “Christmas;” maybe they are in effect paying homage to the original Greek reference to Christ, and they don’t even know it. Anyhow, however it’s said, “Jesus, truly, is the reason for the season!”

Greek lettering:  webanswers.com

Originally published December 18, 2012

Twelfth Anniversary

December 17, 2014

Twelve years ago tonight, Tuesday, December 17, 2002, I was filled with God’s Spirit. The night that I was saved is the only one that could rise above the importance of this particular night in Groveland, Florida, eleven days before my 40th birthday.
My wife and I had just bought a new home in the Crane’s Landing subdivision of this South Lake County community six months prior. I had come home from work and was having my devotional time when I felt my mouth quivering.
I had sought after this blessing for many years, and, finally, I was baptized by Jesus Christ into His Spirit. I began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave me utterance. I can remember the joy and the smile on my face as I was receiving this blessing and enduement of power from God. It was a night that would change my life forever.
 

 

Nikola Vucevic

November 22, 2014

Tonight, in Orlando, FL, the seven-foot, two-hundred sixty-pound center for the Orlando Magic, Nikola Vucevic, had a career-high thirty-three points to go with his seventeen rebounds. Although the Magic lost, their up-and-coming center played the best game of his three-year career as a professional basketball player.

“Nick” is originally from Montenegro, a country in Eastern Europe, and he played his college ball at the University of Southern California. Before tonight’s game he was averaging 18.4 points per game and 11.8 rebounds per game. Tonight, he exceeded those averages.

This morning, I had the opportunity of meeting Nick at the Panera Bread at Lake Eola Park in Orlando. I, also, had the privilege of sharing my faith with him and my testimony as he ate his breakfast. He listened intently as I told my story through tear-filled eyes. He responded that he does, indeed, pray.

I gave him a New Testament, a Four Spiritual Laws tract and a 4×6 card about our church, Faith Assembly of God. I invited him to visit us, and I told him he could view our services live from his phone when he is on the road playing an “away game.” I thank the Lord that our paths crossed today.

Photo Credit:  bleacherreport.com

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 489 other followers