Prophecy Update Newsletter
IN TODAY'S NEWSLETTER...
Only With the Precious Blood of Jesus - by Pastor Mike Taylor - http://pastormiketaylor.blogspot.com/2019/05/only-with-precious-blood-of-jesus.html
18 "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
20 Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
21 Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God."(1st Peter 1:18-21)
"What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
6:20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."(1st Corinthians 6:19-20)
16, "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are."(1st Corinthians 3:16-17)
Man was created in the image of God was is recorded in the book of Genesis.
1:26 "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them."(Genesis 1:26-27)
But down through the ages, man has thought that he knew better than God, the lawgiver, the creator of all things. God instituted certain principles, laws of nature, and of Himself to guide men into His ways and to instruct them in righteous living. But the bible is full of stories of men who would not listen to the Words of God, but deviated according the sins of their flesh and their sinful nature, following instead according to the prince and power of the air and temporary ruler of this world, Lucifer....Satan the devil.
Man is made of flesh, but has a spiritual component that when deviating from the Law of God, is defined as sin. What is sin? Words such as Crime, Error, Foul, Wrong, and Vice come to mind. Each of these words name behavior that fail to reach an accepted standard. Any group of people joining to accomplish a goal will establish a set of rules, laws, guidelines or principles to regulate proper conduct. When such a code is abused or ignored, a penalty is usually imposed.
It is no different when you speak of our Heavenly Father. God established a code of conduct called His Law, as defined by the Ten Commandments. It defined His perfect nature and His desire that man follow His way of living. Man has rejected God's way of living down through the ages and the penalty of not following God's perfect law, is death. Romans, chapter 6,
23, "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."(Romans 6:23)
In God's love for His creation, He gave us His only Son, knowing that we could not keep the Laws of God, as we are sold under sin. To transgress one aspect of the law is to transgress the whole law, as there is no difference when it comes to sin in God's eyes. The law was our school master to lead us to repentance, knowing that we were incapable of keeping the letter of the law. It was God's plan all along to redeem His creation to all that would look to His Son for payment of the sins past, present and future. God covered them all with one perfect sacrifice, His only Begotten Son, Jesus Christ. But that does not stop man from thinking they have a better way....It's called "religion". The word is man's attempt to get to God and think they know what God desires, but God's attempt to get to man is His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. As the old saying goes, it is all about Jesus. It's not about religion, it's about relationship with the only way to God and that is through our Lord Jesus.
BATTLE FOR MAN'S SALVATION AND GNOSTICISM
In man's "attempt" to characterize what God wants, various attempts at "religion" were formed. In the very beginning of the early church, a heresy developed that men knew better than God. It was called Gnosticism, or secret knowledge, called Gnosis. These heretics believed in dualism, or the battle between matter and spirit, good and evil, and light and darkness as defined by the body being bad, and the spirit being good. These early infiltrators of the early church professed that it didn't matter what you did within your body, as the spirit is what mattered. They believed that Jesus was not God in the flesh, as His flesh was corrupt and could not be our redeemer, but that salvation comes from in one of two ways:
» That the only way to attain true spirituality is to deny their flesh (matter) of anything that might tempt them to sin. Those who thought this way became ascetic or afflictions of their flesh.» The opposite extreme, that the things done in the body are inconsequential because only the spirit counts. These Gnostics often fell into licentiousness.
Bible shows that Paul battled this heresy in his epistles, especially in 1st Corinthians, Galatians and Colossians . The Apostle John battled it in all his writings. 1st John chapter 3, is one of those examples:is.
3:3 "And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.
3:4 Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
3:5 And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin.
3:6 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him.
3:7 Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.
3:8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil."(1st John 3:3-8)
John argues against this heresy. Some in John's area of ministry seem to have believed that they could not sin in their flesh. Since their flesh, matter, was ultimately evil anyway, it could not be redeemed and was worthless. Thus, they concluded, anything done in the flesh had no bearing on one's salvation. I see that abounding even today in this cesspool we call the world. It surrounds us on every side. New Age Emergent churches are promoting a new gospel, a new way of following Jesus. And without mentioning the formal religious order by name, there is another "religion" that has, I believe, sprang from the heresies of Gnosticism, or "secret knowledge" of extra biblical traditions that have no root at all in the pages of your Bible. Thus each promote "secret knowledge" by creating traditions that they think defines the God of the Bible. Sadly, they do not.
I had the displeasure of reading an article by a supposedly Christian pastor who proclaimed that we must repackage the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to reach the people of today. Say what? So we must doll up the message to make it more palatable for the young people today? What's wrong with preaching the truth of Jesus Christ and Him crucified? Is there another way to enter into God's Kingdom other than the blood and body of Jesus Christ? NO!! Does that mean rock music in the church? Does that mean creating a mall type atmosphere that rivals any shopping outlet? Does that mean we must have tattoo parlors in the church? Yes, I said tattoo parlors. I had a dear lady write and report churches in her area are promoting tattoos right in the building of these churches. Some misled people of these new "enlightened" churches think they have the right to adorn their bodies with different colored inks that show they follow a "christian" message. I categorically reject this pseudo form of Christianity, as it glorifies the flesh, not the Savior. When would you paint graffiti with a spray can on the building you worship in? Would you paint a cross on the sides of the building and adorn the sanctuary with man-made symbols that deface the structure in various colored inks? Is it any different when you tattoo a cross or a crown of thorns across your back and say you are proclaiming Jesus? How can we reach the world that is dying, if we ourselves are identifying with them by our actions?
Then another "Gnostic" church believes in all kinds of extra biblical hogwash that they think will get them to heaven. (Even the atheist will reach heaven, only do good) When I heard that I almost lost my lunch. They think there are many ways to get to God when Jesus proclaimed the Truth that HE is the only way to God.
6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him." (John 14:6-7)
Again, it's all about Jesus, not your traditions and extra biblical teachings that are no where to be found in the bible, but conjured up in the minds of those who thought they knew better than the Words of God.
OUR DUTY BEFORE THE LIVING GOD
As a Christian, or one who professes knowing Jesus Christ, what is our duty when trying to live the Christian life? There is only One example that we are to live by and follow and that is our perfect example, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Would Jesus allow a tattoo being placed on His righteous body? Would he follow the sins of this world by doing what I see happening in today's emergent "enlightened" churches? Would Jesus allow prayer to anyone, save through Him to God our Father...you say no, you would be right. It smacks of Gnosticism.
2:4 "He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
2:5 But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
2:6 He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked."(1st John 2:4-6)
The apostle Peter reinforced that argument when he wrote:
2:21 " For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
2:22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
2:23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:
2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
2:25 For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls."(1st Peter 2:21-25)
Jesus is our perfect example and the personage we must emulate. God told us in His Word that we must separate ourselves from the sins of the flesh and the ways of this world:
6:16 "And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.
6:18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty. "(2nd Corinthians 6:16-18)
Again, it is all about Jesus, the God of the Bible, our Kinsman Redeemer and our Savior, if we humble ourselves and repent of our sins and follow His ways. It is not about traditions, or extra biblical rhetoric that has no foundation save the thoughts and desires of evil men.
THROW THE WORLD A LIFELINE
THE WORLD IS DYING. I am reminded daily when I see the amount of people in our hospitals that abuse their bodies with all form of addictions. I see people ravaged by alcohol addiction and drink heavily daily. I see people who get high on whatever their drug of choice is and there are many forms of chemical abuse that are legal. I saw a young person who damaged his body with a substance called K2, which is abusing bath salts by injecting it, smoking it, or inhaling it to get high. It destroys their brain, their internal organs, and respiratory systems. I see people who are grossly obese, who find comfort in food and gluttony and are diabetic and with failing organs. Or how about 1-2 pack a day smoker who destroys their lungs, heart, and open the door for cancers to invade? If the lost and dying world is suffering this type of destruction, should we not separate ourselves from this type of behavior with it's addictions and not even look like the rest of the world? If they can't see any difference in us, why would they choose this man, called Jesus Christ? If they can't see Jesus in you, then will they listen to your message? Probably not, but they will take your entertainment in the churches, but live like the devil the rest of the week.
I talk to young people who call themselves Christians, but are living with their boyfriend or girlfriend without the sanctity of marriage. How can one profess knowing Jesus Christ, when they live opposite of what He commanded and lived? Are they confused or do they just know better? Hey, everyone is doing it, right? So it must be OK? I see children being born out of wedlock into new types of families, or being raised by same sex couples and it's OK? Again, how can you reach a world that is dying from being lost in sin, when you indulge in sin yourself, and think it's alright? God plainly condemns this kind of behavior and the abuse of our bodies and our mode of living to the detriment of our very existence. How about Gnostic religions that propose traditions that fly in the face of what Jesus said of "being the only Way back to God". Will your church save you? Will eating a "wafer" on Sundays purify you in the eyes of God? Will you follow the recipes of religion found in your church and will they get you to heaven? The Apostle Peter wrote according to the leading of God's Holy Spirit,
1:14 "As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:
1:15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
1:16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
1:17 And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:
1:18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
1:19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
1:20 Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,
1:21 Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God."(1st Peter 1:14-21)
WE ARE LIVING IN THE LAST OF THE LAST DAYS
It is quite clear for all that are awake and see the events around us, that we ARE in the last days of this world's existence. Suddenly, without warning, your world will be turned upside down and you will either be found in Jesus Christ, or being bamboozled by the god of this world, you have followed another Gnostic gospel, and that is not of Jesus Christ. You will have been living your life according to what you think is best, not according to the clear commands of Jesus Christ or having His sacrifice applied to your life. I have tried to hammer home the message that this world is fast approaching the cliff of tribulation and all of us need to be getting our houses in order. If you profess Jesus Christ, as your Savior, then live like it. If you a playing a fool's game of following another gospel, or a false messiah, and abusing your bodies in ways that are in direct conflict with the clear teachings of the One who died for the entire world, Jesus Christ, then you may have a sad day approaching. When Jesus banishes you from His presence during the sheep and goat judgment at the Bema Judgment Seat of our Lord, you will have no one to blame, but yourself: Matthew chapter 25,
25:33 "And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. ...
25:41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, (ye who practice lawlessness) into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: ....
25:46 "These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."(Matthew 25:33, 41-46)
Those verses are spoken of what will happen after the Tribulation is finished and Jesus is back on earth, ruling with a rod of iron and sitting on the Throne of His descendant in the flesh, King David. But what has happened up to this time, is the most horrendous period in all the earth, that will wipe out all rebellion on earth and very few will be alive to enter the Millennium. Even then some will be judged for their actions during this time period and be cast out.
21 'For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened." (Matthew 24-21-22)
WHAT MUST YOU DO IF YOU PROFESS JESUS?
Christian, look at yourself. Do you follow the clear message of the Bible? Do you continue to make mistakes? Of course you do, but not according to the rest of the world, if you profess our Lord and Savior, but you do not live as the rest of the world does. You separate yourself from anything and everything that speaks of the lust of the flesh and follow the Holy Spirit, guiding your own spirit in righteous living. A Christian will not willfully sin according to the lust of his flesh, but seeks after righteousness. The truly converted man or woman is a new creature in Christ Jesus. We don't follow the commands of any so called "religion" on this earth, as we follow Jesus Christ and the clear instructions in your Bible.
5:17 "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
5:18 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
5:19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation."(2nd Corinthians 5:17-19)
To emphasize the obvious, it's not about "religion" (any religion) as it is about your relationship with the "author and finisher of our faith" the Lord Jesus Christ. It is not about anything in this world, as this world is passing away and eternity fast approaches, but the coming Tribulation is coming faster and we are on the cusp of the coming judgments of King of the Universe, God our Father, and His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.
8:19 "For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.
8:20 For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,
8:21 Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
8:22 For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
8:23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body."(Romans 8:19-23)
Men are dying because they are abusing the body made in the image of God. They follow the god of this world and fall into every unclean practices that leads to death. They die prematurely and experience painful deaths. I know, because I've seen it, up close and personal. Or they follow a "Gnostic" religion thinking by doing certain practices and traditions, that somehow that will save them. I hope by now that you are thinking in your mind, it will not.
How more should we who have been converted to follow the ways of God, abstain from anything that would look like the world? God will hold each of accountable for things done in our body, meaning he will reward, or withhold reward for each of His children who are truly converted, but never quite learned the lessons of righteous living. See the opening verses that started this sermon. He will sorely judge the haphazard Christian who abuses the body He resides in . He will also, judge those who follow a pseudo form of Christianity, but deny the power thereof as noted in the sheep and goat parable. To mouth the words of being a Christian, does not make it so. It is an inward change of the heart. You will look odd to the world, but Jesus warned each of us of that very fact,
15:18 "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.
15:19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.
15:20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.
15:21 But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me."(John 15:18-21)
TO ALL WHO ARE SEARCHING FOR THE TRUTH OF THE GOSPEL
To the lost and dying, that do not have the payment of their sins paid for by the blood sacrifice and broken body of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, time is growing short. Jesus is right at the door waiting to gather His church unto Himself. Jesus said that the time would be as in the days of Noah. Look around you, does this world seem to be going mad? Is it not as Jesus said it would be? Truly, it is.
"And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.
17:27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.
17:28 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded;
17:29 But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all."(Luke 17:26-29)
Do not look at others who proclaim they are Christians, as some may be deceived. Don't look to your parish priest, your local pastor, or traditions that try and sell you on a work's based religion. It won't get you anything, but a one way ticket to eternal torment.
You might look to others for the way they live and use it as confirmation that you do not want this free gift of grace paid for nearly 2000 years ago. You will then make that choice independent of those you hold up as the reason you have not committed your life and heart to the Lord Jesus Christ. You will be solely responsible for the banishment into outer darkness where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth. Each of us are destined to be either in glory and in the presence of God Almighty, or be banished from His presence for all eternity.
2:9 "Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
2:10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
2:11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling."(Philippians 2:9-12)
Each of us have been formed in the image of God. Those who have accepted Jesus Christ as personal Savior, must realize that their body is the Temple of God and we were bought with a very high price, hence my opening scriptures concerning this very fact. Those who have not accepted the free gift of salvation, do so at their own eternal peril. I extend an open invitation to all who will listen to that still, small voice inside your heart that draws you to the God who created you,
Invite the Spirit of God into your heart to make Jesus Lord and Savior of your life. Be saved by the covering of the Lord's perfect sacrifice completed in His own precious blood. Become the Temple of God's Holy Spirit and flee from anything and everything that imitates anything found in this world that the rest of the world revels in to their own destruction.
Remember the phrase, "it is all about Jesus and your relationship with Him". Not anything found on this earth save through Him will get you worshiping Him as we bow before Him in eternity. \
16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God."(John 3:16-18)
8 "But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." (Romans 10:8-13)
Those two last passages found in your Bible are the key to salvation through Jesus Christ, our Lord. It is so simple, a child can do it, but you must come to Him in child like faith, believing what He said, and embracing Him and being covered "with the precious blood of Jesus"
This is Pastor Mike Taylor, praying God's salvation in your heart and life. If there is anything I can counsel you on, pray with you about, or just a listening ear, then email me at firstname.lastname@example.org , , , God bless you all: till we meet at Jesus feet.
The 'Deal Of The Century' Is Splitting The Arab World - By Itzhak Levanon - http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/article.cfm?recent_news_id=3229
The fissures are already visible. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, two important, influential Persian Gulf counties, announced they will attend the U.S.-led economic conference in Bahrain scheduled for June 25-26.
The Palestinian Authority and Hamas have already said separately that they will boycott the summit.
Egypt and Jordan are still undecided. The rest of the Arab world is licking its wounds. Iran, for its part, is looking on, grinning from ear to ear.
Jordan's King Abdullah was able to weather the Arab Spring uprising by adopting some of the demands put forth by the masses and changing Jordan's election system.
His problems didn't end there, however, and his kingdom is still unstable. At this stage, he'd rather the Mideast peace plan known as "the deal of the century" was put on hold, while the uncertainty surrounding the plan's details is exacerbating his concerns that his country will have to pay a steep price.
Unlike Jordan, Egypt is projecting an aura of self-confidence. It is ignoring the P.A. in its talks with Hamas over a ceasefire understanding with Israel and has tempered its efforts to mediate inter-Palestinian reconciliation.
Egypt supports the Palestinian demands regarding a final-status agreement with Israel, but is not backing P.A. leader Mahmoud Abbas's rejectionist approach to U.S. peace deal.
Cairo feels comfortable enough to speak with Washington honestly and is calling on the Palestinians to return to the negotiating table and to learn from Egypt's experience with Israel.
Abbas has worked tirelessly to create an Arab front to foil the deal, seemingly without success. The White House hasn't backtracked on its intention to present the plan after the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
Even in Israel, voices have emerged in support of postponing the plan, which likely won't be received with unanimity across the Arab world either. To be sure, since the establishment of the Arab League in 1954, the Arab world has never been this divided.
The Palestinian rejection of the plan, without knowing what it entails, can be viewed as strategic, but the refusal to attend the Bahrain conference is a tactical misstep. The Palestinians are gambling for the entire pot, and it's reasonable to predict they will lose.
Jordan needs to plot a new course, and quickly. The king's vacillation is destabilizing the country, and he needs to take a history lesson from the courage displayed by his father, Hussein.
He must openly improve relations with Israel, reinstate clauses in the peace agreement that allow Israel to lease two small areas comprising 1,000 acres of agricultural land, and stop shunning the Israeli prime minister.
Israel, for its part, will help ensure that the "deal of the century" doesn't harm Jordanian interests.
Cairo is expected to adopt the role of mediator, and its overt cooperation with Israel will give Egypt prestige and improve its position.
The ball is therefore in the Palestinians' court. If they remain intransigent, it will reinforce the sense that their rejectionism is chronic, and that they aren't truly interested in a final-status agreement.
It's quite possible they prefer their current situation to resolving their problems. It has already been observed that the only type of logic in the Middle East is illogic.
The Tube - By Grant Phillips -
"The tube" used to be a referral to the television set. However, that will not work today since tubes are no longer used to manufacture television sets. We today are much more sophisticated. The invading beast has evolved and greatly expanded its territory.
I still hear it referred to as "the idiot box" though and most every home in America has at least one, and usually more. I suspect that many would rather do without toilet paper than the TV, although toilet paper is obviously more beneficial. One dispenses waste. The other cleans it up.
Also, most everyone living in this new age of electronics cannot remember a time without our beloved TV. I can remember, as a child, our getting our first television. It was a large square box with three snowy channels that provided us with the ABC, CBS and NBC networks.
Televisions today have more channels than anyone could ever keep up with, although I dare say that some do try. It has become the centerpiece of the home. Notice that all seating is positioned directly toward the television. It can be found in living rooms, dens, bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, workshops and even the outdoor deck areas. Maybe someone has even installed one in a closet or hallway. You never know. The short of it is, the television has long ago moved in to the most private part of our lives; our homes. Has it become a god in our homes? Is it really the main attraction in our homes?
I have also noticed that it can also be found in nearly any public area we may visit. Maybe you have noticed that televisions have followed us to the doctor's office, the hospital, restaurants, and many other locales. My wife and I have even seen them at a gas station. I kid you not. There was one at each pump, and yes, they were actually televisions with real broadcasts.
One of the most irritating things I can think of is sitting in a doctor's office, or a hospital waiting room, or wherever and being force-fed the distraction of this annoying electronic gadget when I would much rather just sit and read. But who can read with the racket coming from the wall? Not only that, the TV is usually airing something I would never watch at home, although admittedly, my preferences are extremely few.
The television can be a useful tool when it is used with discretion, but most that come from the airwaves is not healthy for any of us. How many of us have ever considered the garbage that has been etched into our brains over the many years it has had to indoctrinate us? How many of us can still think for ourselves without turning on the "tube" to hear someone telling us what to believe?
Speaking of ... don't you love it when the "experts" take up our time to tell us what someone just said that we just heard speak with our own ears? I suppose they think we are all stupid, so they are going to tell us what the speaker really said. Are we stupid? Based on the number of corrupt politicians that have been elected, by us, I really can't argue the fact.
The television can be, and sometimes is, a great tool to dispense information such as Biblically based religious programs (a rarity), weather (usually wrong unless it is after the fact), and truthful unbiased news (a greater rarity). However, it can and is being used, as a Satanic tool to indoctrinate the masses with any and everything that will please the ruler of this world; i.e. Satan.
We live in a society that prides itself on independent thinking and correct analysis, believing our way is the only way. However, when I read what God says in His Word, then consider our stance as a society toward His Word, society has some serious problems. We are weak, brainless, prideful, egocentric, and bound for judgment by a righteous and holy God. Much of our nonsensical thinking has come from being brainwashed from the regurgitation emitted from the television.
Another Trojan horse that is now consuming our lives is the Internet and the electronic devices we use for access. As I said of the television, I repeat concerning the Internet. The Internet and television are excellent tools for us to use when used wisely. The greatest problem I see with both television and Internet is that those in the control center who decide what will be available for our viewing are providing contaminated meals instead of healthy foods for our consumption. So far, it is easier to find enriched foods on the Internet than the television, but again, one has to search wisely.
Satan and his hordes of disciples are more than willing, even excited, to provide despicable viewing for our "pleasure." This is why, especially today, we who follow Jesus Christ need to be more and more in the Word of the Bible and have a strong prayer life. The wild rabid dogs of hell have been unleashed upon us and there is no safe place but in the arms of the one and only true God. If we as Christians allow ourselves to be caught up in this mad frenzy, we will be caught up in the stampede of insanity that surrounds us each day. Our soul will always be secure in the hands of God, but our earthly lives will not provide much spiritual light to others who also need Jesus.
Jesus said, "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven." (Matthew 5:16) If all we feed ourselves upon is the garbage from the television and the dark alleys of the Internet, how can we possibly fulfill our Lord's command to us as stated in the verse above? By the way, notice that it is a command. Jesus is not saying "Please." He is saying, "Do this."
Every person that claims Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord needs to make a concerted effort at obeying Jesus' command. Jesus is the Light, and it is He that needs to be seen in our lives, instead of endless hours of media indoctrination.
I could go on and on, page after page, concerning so many different avenues about this subject, but the one simple point is this. Who do we serve, God or man? How much time do we spend with the Lord? Is our greatest concern our time with God or the upcoming ballgame to be broadcast? Do we need to adjust our thinking about supporting shows that support sinful lifestyles? If we watch them, we are supporting them. What does God think about that? Is the light showing in our life, or is it barely a flicker? God should be the center of our life. Is He?
Pre-Rapture Commentary: http://grant-phillips.blogspot.com
Rapture Ready: https://www.raptureready.com/featured/phillips/phillips.html
Fighting Fire with Fire - Nathele Graham -
Christians say "I'm in a spiritual battle" or "Satan is really after me". These words are true. If you've accepted Christ as your Saviour then you've rejected Satan. He doesn't like that. He especially doesn't like it if you're a born again, on-fire, Bible-believing, God-fearing Christian. That's when the battle begins. Many Christians don't recognize the signs of the spiritual battle, become fatigued by the fight, and concede defeat. Jesus never promised that a Christian's life would be easy. "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." John 16:33. Some of the tribulation we face is the same as what everyone faces, whether believer or non-believer. We get sick or money gets tight...Christians aren't exempt from these things and often it's our own choices that cause the trouble. The real tribulation comes when Satan and his minions target us with spiritual battles, but very few pastors teach about spiritual warfare. Scripture is clear that spiritual attack is real, but many Christians are ignorant of the facts. We know we aren't to talk to the dead or play with tarot cards, but closing our eyes and plugging our ears won't make the enemy go away. God is also a spiritual force. We talk about the Holy Spirit but our own ignorance hampers His power within us. When we deny His power we give the battle over to the enemy. For a spiritual battle we need spiritual weapons...we need to fight fire with fire.
Elijah found that out. He was an amazing man of God...a prophet who spoke God's truth in spite of a corrupt and evil government led by Ahab and Jezebel. The demonic influence in the court of Ahab and Jezebel was strong, and we see that same demonic evil controlling many governments today. Even then there were some brave people who served God Almighty. Elijah was a prophet of God who spoke God's truth even though it brought great persecution upon himself. There were a few faithful men within the government. A man named Obadiah was one such man. When Jezebel had killed the prophets of the LORD who were within her jurisdiction, it was Obadiah who saved 100 of them. Today the persecution of people who serve God is strong, but there are people within governments who know the Lord. We need to pray for their safety. Jezebel wanted Elijah dead, but God had other plans. The evil of a corrupt government is no match for God's power, but we need to believe and trust God and boldly stand against the evil. That's what Elijah did. He sent Obadiah to tell Ahab where he was. Did Obadiah rejoice over his mission? "And he said, What have I sinned, that thou wouldest deliver thy servant into the hand of Ahab, to slay me? As the LORD thy God liveth, there is no nation or kingdom, whither my lord hath not sent to seek thee: and when they said, He is not there; he took an oath of the kingdom and nation, that they found thee not." 1 Kings 18:9-10. Persecution against the Jewish people continues today, as well as persecution against Christians. It's satanic. The spiritual battle rages, and Christians sleep.
Obadiah told Ahab where to find Elijah, and Ahab met with him. The Northern Kingdom of Israel was very corrupt and it became very demonic under the rule of Ahab and Jezebel. God still sent help which was rejected by the government. "And it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel? And he answered, I have not troubled Israel; but thou, and thy father's house, in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the LORD, and thou has followed Baalim." 1 Kings 18:17-18. Christians need to pay attention. In America we have our own Ahab and Jezebel. Corrupt leaders who serve Satan. Bill and Hillary Clinton come to mind, as well as other leaders who speak loud and promote sin. They have forsaken the moral standards of God's law and promote sin and corruption. Deviant marriage practices, abortion, etc. are evidence of Satan's control over the leaders of many nations today. The Christian voice is being silenced and instead of recognizing the spiritual force behind the evil, Christians keep silent. There's no fire in our walk because we've quenched the fire.
Elijah had no fear of Ahab because he knew the battle was spiritual and that God was on his side. God would fight the battle, but Elijah had to do his part. So, he put out a challenge. "Now therefore send, and gather to me all Israel unto mount Carmel, and the prophets of Baal four hundred and fifty, and the prophets of the groves four hundred which eat at Jezebel's table." 1 Kings 18:19. Baal is a demon god who Jezebel worshipped. Worship of this demon included human sacrifice among other demonic practices. "The prophets of the groves" are worshippers of the demon Asherah. Ahab and Jezebel were evil rulers, but God would show His power through Elijah. The battle was spiritual, just as the evil we face today is spiritual, but Elijah didn't keep silent. He obeyed God even if that meant risking his life. Ahab took up the challenge. His pride and arrogance caused him to believe his demon gods were more powerful than the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Besides, he had a large number of false prophets against Elijah; sheer numbers would defeat one man. One man who fully follows God is a majority.
When all were gathered, Elijah asked a question of the people. "And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word." 1 Kings 18:21. There's the problem. The people kept silent. Had they come against Ahab and Jezebel the Northern Kingdom wouldn't have faced the corruption and evil that was gripping it. Christians today need to ask themselves that very same question. When people like Hillary Clinton are not in jail, there's a problem. When Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are running the government I have to wonder why Christians are keeping silent. They can only be elected if they get votes. Christians seem to have voted against God. We need an Elijah to rise up and stand against the demonic corruption in Government. Not only in the United States, but every nation.
The challenge Elijah put out was that a bullock would be given to those who served Baal and he would also have a bullock. These bullocks would be cut into pieces and laid upon wood for an offering. No fire would be lit. "And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the LORD: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken." 1 Kings 18:24. So the entertainment began. "And they took the bullock which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped upon the altar which was made." 1 Kings 18:26. This would be a good Hollywood movie as there are many worshippers of Baal in the entertainment industry. Of course, Baal failed so Hollywood doesn't want to show the failure of their demon god.
Oh how these false prophets tried to show their demon god's power. It was powerless. Elijah had fun with their failure. "And it came to pass at noon, that Elijah mocked them, and said, Cry aloud: for he is a god; either he is talking, or he is pursuing, or he is in a journey, or peradventure he sleepeth and must be awaked." 1 Kings 18:27. God Almighty does not sleep. "Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep." Psalm 121:4. Demon gods always require blood...human blood. When the god of the false prophets failed they gave him their blood. "And they cried aloud, and cut themselves after their manner with knives and lancets, till the blood gushed out upon them." 1 Kings 18:28. Blood is a sacrifice seen throughout the Old Testament, but Jesus Christ shed His blood for our salvation. Only demon gods require their followers to shed human blood as part of worship. Every time a Muslim blows himself to bits, remember he is sacrificing to a demon god. Every time an abortion is performed, a blood sacrifice is made to a demon god. Brothers and sisters, how long will we keep silent? How long will we "halt between two opinions"? When Joshua led the Israelites into the demon possessed Promised Land, he faced people who worshipped those same demons. After the Israelites conquered the land, Joshua put out this challenge. "And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD." Joshua 24:15. Christians need to choose to serve the Lord.
The prophets of Baal failed and now it was Elijah's turn to see what God Almighty would do. He repaired his altar and took 12 stones...one for each of the 12 tribes of Israel. Then he dug a trench around the altar, arranged the wood, and laid the cut pieces of the bullock on the wood. Then he made things difficult. "...Fill four barrels with water, and pour it on the burnt sacrifice, and on the wood." 1 Kings 18:33b. Then he instructed his helpers to pour water on the sacrifice two more times filling the trench with water. Then, Elijah showed his faith. "And it came to pass at the time of the offering o the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that the thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word. Hear me, O LORD, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the LORD God, and that thou hast turned their heart back again." 1 Kings 18:36-37. Elijah didn't run and hide and he didn't do things his own way. He trusted the Lord and stood upon his faith. He knew God would win this spiritual battle even if the battle seemed lost. "Then the fire of the LORD fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. And when the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The LORD, he is the God; the LORD, he is the God." 1 Kings 18:38-39. Elijah fought fire with fire. The fire of the false gods was empty and not there at all. The fire from God is powerful and real.
Christians, pay attention. We have fire, but we quench it. Remember the day of Pentecost? "And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance." Acts 2:1-4. The gift of tongues is only one of the Spiritual gifts that the Holy Spirit gives to every born again Christian. Can you imagine what we could accomplish if we believed in the power God has given us instead of quenching the fire of the Holy Spirit? The Apostles accomplished great things in the name of Jesus because they believed Him and used their Holy Spirit power for His glory. They healed people, cast out demons, and brought many souls to a saving faith in Christ.
The spiritual fight is real. In the letter to the Ephesians Paul addressed the importance of godly husbands, fathers, wives, mothers, and children. Then he told us to how to fight fire with fire. "Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." Ephesians 6:11-12. Elijah fought against a spiritual enemy and that battle still rages today. Elijah didn't fight on his own, but fought with the help of the Holy Spirit. Today Christians are indwelt with the Holy Spirit but most ignore Him. Paul describes the battle weapons we need to fight and it's incumbent upon every Christian to be fit for battle. Study through the rest of Ephesians chapter six and understand each weapon God provides. Don't choose one, but take all of them into the battle.
Ultimately, Jesus wins the battle. Until He returns we need to fight fire with fire. We need to use the fire of the Holy Spirit to stand against the non-fire of Satan. "Quench not the Spirit." 1 Thessalonians 5:19. Don't be double-minded and don't live with one foot in the demonic world. Fight.
God bless you all,
Ron and Nathele Graham's previous commentaries archived at http://www.raptureready.com/featured/graham/graham.html
All original scripture is "theopneustos" God breathed.
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Daily Jot: Mueller and the seven wicked spirits - Bill Wilson - www.dailyjot.com
The news media and coup-makers are in a frenzy interpreting the remarks of Special Counsel Robert Mueller before the nation in closing his office and summarizing his report to Congress. Just to summarize: Mueller said the Russians tried to influence the 2016 Presidential elections, but President Trump was not part of any coordination with that effort. Mueller said that there was no decision whether the President obstructed the investigation. He said, "As set forth in our report, after that investigation, if we had confidence that the President clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said that. We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the President did commit a crime."
Mueller justified a "no decision" because "a President cannot be charged with a federal crime while he is in office. That is unconstitutional." Mueller gave three reasons: "First, the opinion explicitly permits the investigation of a sitting President because it is important to preserve evidence while memories are fresh and documents are available. Among other things, that evidence could be used if there were co-conspirators who could now be charged. And second, the opinion says that the Constitution requires a process other than the criminal justice system to formally accuse a sitting President of wrongdoing. And beyond Department policy, we were guided by principles of fairness. It would be unfair to potentially accuse somebody of a crime when there can be no court resolution of an actual charge."
Those are Mueller's exact words. How they are interpreted is the real story. AP, in it's news story covering the statement said, "Shortly after Mueller concluded, the president, who has repeatedly and falsely claimed that the report cleared him of obstruction of justice, tweeted a subdued yet still somewhat inaccurate reaction: "Nothing changes from the Mueller Report. There was insufficient evidence and therefore, in our Country, a person is innocent. The case is closed! Thank you." You can see that AP editorialized by using the words "repeatedly and falsely claimed" and by characterizing the President's tweet as a "somewhat inaccurate reaction." The neo-communist coup-makers are now convinced that the President is guilty.
Because Mueller did not specifically clear the President of a crime, The coup-makers say that the President committed the crime-in this case, obstruction. The President's supporters say that Mueller did not have enough evidence to even recommend further action. After all is said and done and millions of our tax money spent, Mueller left without conclusion, further fueling the flames of impeachment by the coup-makers and their lapdog media propagandists. So while Mueller swept clean his office and vacated, more demons have entered in. It's like what Christ said in Luke 11:26 about an unclean spirit who is cast out of a man returning to the house from whence he came and finding it swept clean, he reenters the house "and takes to him seven other spirits more wicked than himself." And so the coup continues.
Daily Devotion: Fight to Resolve - by Greg Laurie - www.harvest.org
Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. - James 1:19
Ruth Graham once said, "A successful marriage is made up of two good forgivers." Good conflicts will arise in your marriage. Have your disagreement and forgive. The objective is not to win. It is to resolve. If you go in it to win, you'll lose even if you win.
And don't fight in front of the kids. In fact, don't fight in front of people in general. Learn how to resolve conflict in private. And learn how to fight fair. When there are boxing matches, there are rules. There are certain things you can and cannot do to your opponent. So, when you sit down with your spouse and you're having a disagreement, first hear them out.
In the Proverbs, we read that a fool answers a matter before he hears it (see Proverbs 18:13). When you get into these things and you're interrupting one another, talking over one another, and yelling over one another, it is counterproductive. Instead, sit down and say, "Tell me why you are upset. Tell me what the issue is." And then shut up and listen. You might learn something.
You might realize that there's a misunderstanding you can now sort out. Then again, they may make a point that's actually valid. Maybe you can see how they perceive or understand what you've said or done. Maybe it came off a certain way, and you didn't mean it that way. Say, "I am sorry. I didn't realize-I won't do that again." Have a calm conversation. Communicate.
Ephesians 4:31-32 says, "Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you" (NLT).
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