Saturday, August 30, 2008
When Martin Luther's translation of the Bible was being printed, a section of type fell to the floor, later to be found by the printer's daughter who, upon reading it, found the words For ‘God so loved the world that He gave’. Excitedly, she showed the section to her mother. Her mother said it didn't make any sense. Gave what? she queried, whereupon the girl responded excitedly, It doesn't matter. If God loves me enough to give me anything, I don't have to be afraid of Him!
Many people in the world think of God as harsh and judgmental; even accusing Him of being indifferent to the world, yet the truth is that He loves us. How do we know that He loves us? Because He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him (1 John 4:9). The cross is God's bold declaration and demonstration of love. Because He loved us He sent Jesus to suffer the shame and agony of crucifixion, thereby making a bridge across the gulf of wrongdoing that separates us from Him. Jesus was driven by a selfish and loveless world outside the city wall and hung on a cross, and yet, all of this proclaimed that God loves His people.
John writes that we know what love is because He laid down His life for us (1 John 3:16). As Christians we are to walk in the steps of Christ, and that means responding to others as He would. His love included all people and was active in their lives. Jesus faced many so-called untouchables in His day; lepers, Samaritans, publicans, prostitutes, ministering to their needs as to any others. That kind of love is the example for every Christian: Love one another, just as I have loved you.
The love of Christ is neither gullible nor naive. If we love God, who is holy, then we cannot love the things that are against Christ. We may hate sin and yet love the sinner. John writes, Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lusts of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world (1 John 2: 15-16). Christ's love is exclusive.
His love is also eternal; The man who does the will of God lives forever (1 John 2:17b). When you love Christ then you also love doing God's will, for this unites you with His love. Paul writes in his letter to the Romans that nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:39).
The word love is probably the most misunderstood word in our vocabulary, applied as it is to everything from food to clothes; from romance to religious experience. Sometimes we all need to be reminded that there is no ‘I’ in love in order to understand its full meaning. In Christ we see the perfect example of true love, something which is desperately needed in this world of ours today.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
- Believe that Jesus is exactly who He said He was, the only Son of the Living God.
- Repent of our sins, recognising that we were born into sin as a result of the Fall of Adam.
- Accept all that He did by dying on the cross for the forgiveness of sins.
Once we have accepted Jesus into our hearts, coming to know Him rather than knowing ABOUT Him, then it's not time to sit back and count how lucky we are for the gift. Of course the gift of Salvation is a priceless gift, but once having received it then we must do everything that we can to share it with those who have yet to receive it.
I guess that knocks all thoughts of 'retirement' firmly on the head, at least as far as ministry is concerned! Thank the Lord for that!
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Even though there is little in the news media about Zimbabwe, please keep the people of that beleaguered nation in your prayers. Despite all of the tyrant Mugabe's best efforts to destroy the people's spirit they are an increasingly strong people of faith. There are many miracles taking place every day when it comes to them getting enough food to eat, and they constantly praise God for all of His goodness towards them.
If they, in all their poverty, and despite the constant and horrific treatment meted out to them by Mugabe and his thugs, can pray, praise and grow in faith, then how much more can we?
Please help to ensure that these people are not forgotten by praying for them every day in your private prayer time and by drawing attention to their needs through your churches. One of the ways that God supplies their needs is by drawing our attention to them and through our prayers for their relief.
One place you can find out about the plight of these people and also some of the ways that work is going on to help alleviate that plight, is by visiting the Barnabus Fund website.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Luke 10: 33 - 37
King James Version
I looked up the definition of special needs in Webster’s Dictionary “the individual requirements (as for education) of a person with a disadvantaged background, or a mental, emotional, or physical disability or a high risk of developing one.” We have many special needs Christians who have been abused and mistreated. They have been ridiculed and criticized.
When we accept Jesus into our hearts as our personal Saviour, old things are passed away and all things are become new but we still have memories and scars from our past. “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (2 Corinthians 5: 17).
Joyce Landorf Heatherley, a well known author and speaker, said on one of her teaching tapes “I am not super spiritual every second of the day. I have pain that wipes out my determination to go on and if I am going to make it through, it’s going to have to be because of you.” God has used Joyce so many times in my life to encourage and inspire me because she shared from her heart.
Have you ever felt so discouraged that you wanted to give up and stop serving Jesus? I think if we are honest with ourselves, and if we will stop trying to be super spiritual that all of us will have to admit that there are times when we get so discouraged that we are tempted to give up and stop serving Jesus. When I first started posting my devotions on the Internet three and a half years ago, I received so many criticizing and sarcastic emails that I cried. There were a few times that I was tempted to give up and stop serving Jesus. However, every time I wanted to give up, I remembered what Jesus did for me on the cross. I’m sure that He did not want to die on the cross for me but He did it anyway.
In our Scripture verses for today, Jesus tells us to “Go, and do thou likewise.” When we see people who are in pain; who are hurting and discouraged, we need to put our arms around them and hug them for Jesus. We don’t know what the people we sit next to in church have been through. Some of them may have been abused sexually, physically and emotionally when they were children like I was. They desperately need to know that they are loved and that they are loved unconditionally.
Your parents, your spouse, your children and your friends may be special needs Christians. Only Jesus can see into our hearts and only Jesus can take the pain, the anguish and the horror from our hearts. However, He has not been here for over two thousand years. He has left us to hug for Him. When is the last time you put your arms around someone and told that person that Jesus loves him or her unconditionally?
You may be a special needs Christian yourself. You probably have heard this saying before “You get back what you give out.” If you aren’t a loving person, and if you don’t hug people and comfort and encourage them when they are hurting, it is very doubtful that people will hug you and comfort and encourage you when you are hurting.
Did you know that Jesus is a special needs Christian? He desperately needs to know that He is loved. He was not only abused physically and emotionally when He was here on earth; He is still being abused today when people reject Him, curse Him and mock Him. How often do you tell Him that you love Him? How many times have you told Him that you love Him today? Let’s determine in our hearts to not only be an encouragement and comfort to our families, to our loved ones, to our pastors and their families but also to Jesus.
Monday, August 25, 2008
Somethings you haven't seen from the media.....
Talk about putting your most valuable where your mouth is! Apparently this was not 'newsworthy' enough for the media to comment about. Can either of the other presidential candidates truthfully come close to this? ... Just a question for each of us to seek an answer, and not a statement.
Not only that, but there were peacocks roaming around the gardens as well!
Of course, those who know me will know that I love the sea and boats, and so many of my photographs reflect just that. Here are just a couple!
We never got chance to visit the Swalloow Falls so I found this picture for you to see what it's like.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Friday, August 15, 2008
There are times when I, just like everyone else, feel down, and it's at times like these that I find the Lord sends someone along to encourage and uplift me. Just when I begin to feel that I'm not really making a difference someone comes along to tell me what a difference I make to their life in one way or another. Often it will be because I care enough to pray for them. Other times it will be something that I've been led to say in a service. Of course, the real answer is that it's really Jesus that makes the difference, for without my desire to reach out to others in His name and for His sake I would not be able to give the blessings that I do.
Sometimes I find that things seem to be working better than ever in my ministry, which is a great encouragement to me. yet those are the times when I know that I need to be even more 'on guard' than ever, for when the enemy sees that we are making headway then that is when he decides to attack us in some sneaky way. So I guess that coming under satanic attack is, in a strange way, a stamp of approval on our work for the Lord. After all, if we weren't busy for the Lord then we wouldn't be worrying the devil!
Be encouraged! Everything that you do for others through your devotions or in any other way,when you do it in service to the Lord Jesus you are furthering the work of the Kingdom. When the words that you write are an encouragement to others in their ministry then that's all part of the important work that we are all called to.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
- It has a purchase price yet you cannot buy it.
- It is truly a gift because it has been purchased for us.
- It's not a prize --- you cannot win it!
- It's not some sort of payment because you have done some good things or live a 'good' life.
- You don't 'earn' it by going to church, --- even if you go three times every Sunday!
- If you had to buy it you would never have the purchase price, no matter how wealthy you were.
- You cannot get it from anyone else except Jesus.
So, how do you get this wonderful gift?
First of all you have to believe that Jesus is the Son of God and that He died on the Cross at Calvary to pay the price of sin for the whole of mankind. Only Jesus, who was without sin Himself, was good enough to pay the price that God demanded.
Secondly, you must repent of all the sin in your own life. This means all sin! Only man tries to differentiate between 'big' sin and 'little' sin!
Thirdly, you must confess Jesus as your Saviour and acknowledge Him as the Lord of your life. This means that, recognising that He is responsible for your salvation, you die to yourself and live to Him. In plain language: You must let Jesus control your life!
Oh yes, about my birthday! According to my birth certificate I shall be 65, and by the way that I feel, that has to be 65 years YOUNG! The photo above shows how young I look. OK! OK! It's not exactly an 'up-to-date' photo, but so what!!! At least it is (or rather was) me! There's less hair on top (much less!), and more on the face. There's probably a few lines that my eyesight hides from me. BUT, there's still the same sense of humour, still the same love for the Lord, still the same commitment to God. If anything has changed it's only that these things have increased over the years, and that has to be a good thing!
Praise the Lord for the richness of my life in Him!
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
- a hidden menace in our government and schools
Common Purpose is the glue than enables fraud to be committed across government departments to reward pro European politicians. Corrupt deals are enabled that put property or cash into their pockets by embezzling public assets.
Although it has 80,000 trainees in 36 cities, 18,000 'graduate' members and enormous power, Common Purpose is largely unknown to the general public.
It recruits and trains "leaders" to be loyal to the directives of Common Purpose and the EU, instead of to their own departments, which they then undermine or subvert, the NHS being an example.
Common Purpose is identifying leaders in all levels of our government to assume power when our nation is replaced by the European Union. Unlike current leaders, CP leaders are taught to rule without democracy, and will bring the EU police state home to every one of us.
It has members in the NHS, BBC, the police, the legal profession, many of Britains 7,000 quangos, local councils, the Civil Service, government ministries, Parliament, and it controls many RDA's (Regional Development Agencies).
Cressida Dick is the Common Purpose senior police officer who authorised the "Shoot to kill" policy without reference to Parliament, the law or the British Constitution. Jean de Menezes was one of the innocents who died as a result. Her shoot to kill policy still stands today.
Common Purpose trained Janet Paraskeva, the Law Society's Chief Executive Officer. Surprising numbers of lawyers are CP members. It is no coincidence that justice is more expensive, more flawed and more corrupt. And no surprise the courts refused to uphold the law, when a challenge was made to the signing of the six EU treaties, which illegally abolish Britain's sovereignty.
Common Purpose is backed by John Prescott's "Office of the Deputy Prime Minister" (ODPM), and its notional Chief Executive is Julia Middleton. The Head of the Civil Service Commission is a member
It is close to controlling Plymouth City Council, where is has subverted the democratic process. Local people cannot get CP's corrupt activities published, because the editors of local papers are in CP, and refuse to let journalists publish the articles.
CP started in 1985; in the 1990’s, with its members' cross departmental influence, it was involved with what then became the disasterous New Millennium Dome Company and the squandering of £800 million; it appears £300m of this was diverted into the web of quangos set up by CP. There is a fraud case over this, stalled in the courts thanks to CP's influence in the legal profession.
Over £100 million of our money has been spend on CP courses alone, and its been hidden from the public. No published accounts, and members names are a guarded secret. It charges substantial figures for its courses. Matrix for example costs £3,950 plus VAT, and courses for the high flying ‘leader’ can be as much as £9,950 plus VAT. This money is ours, paid by government departments financing senior staff to become agents for CP, instead of loyal to their own jobs.
Common Purpose International (Ltd by guarantee) is registered as a Charity No 1056573 and describes itself as being involved in Adult education. Some charity.
Common Purpose - training our future EU rulers - continued
Potential Common Purpose subjects are ‘selected’ for training. Are they susceptible to being converted; are they in the right job, with the right colleagues and friends? Do they have power, influence and the control of money? If the candidate has some, or all of these key attributes, then the local Common Purpose Advisory Board decides if they can do the course.
Trained leaders are encouraged to act as a network, enable other members' plans, and have meetings under the so called Chatham House rules. This effectively means their statements are not attributable to them, nor can attendees reveal information heard at a Common Purpose meeting.
Council Officers are having quasi secret meetings with, for example, property developer Common Purpose friends. No agendas and no minutes. Common Purpose Graduates from the public quango sectors such as the Regional Development Agencies attend, and have the power to award large sums of public money to projects.
It is the worst national example of cronyism, closed contract bids, fraud and corruption. And unseen to the general public.
Common Purpose undermines traditionally effective and efficient government departments with an overwhelming influx of new language, political correctness and management initiatives. The talk is of empowering communities, vision, worknessless, mainstreaming (sucking EU money into a project to sustain it), community empowerment, working partnership, regeneration and celebrating diversity etc etc. Documents appear about change, and reorganisation. In time confusion rules, and things don’t seem to work properly. Management decisions are made that seem stupidly destructive. The organisational performance becomes sluggish. Undermining the NHS is Common Purposes' biggest success so far.
David Cameron, who is pro Europe, uses the language of Common Purpose; he has appointed Ken Clarke, the most committed of the pro Europeans, in charge of his “Democracy Taskforce” - rather like putting the cat in charge of the safety of mice.
Common Purpose specifically targets children from the age of 13, and more recently younger, for special leadership and citizenship training. Yes, it is active in schools, and again the average parent has no idea.
People have contacted us to speak of their experiences with Common Purpose. A common theme is its all sweetness and light, until you fail to follow the direction set by the CP leadership.
Then interesting things happen. Ladies in particular have been bullied at work, some have lost their jobs, some have become paranoid and depressed at the pressure from people ganging up on them.
A typical story is a husband describing the decline in his wife from the time she becomes a Common Purpose graduate. Loss of sparkle, enthusiasm, anxious and ‘changed’, and she initiated a divorce.
Other Common Purpose people lie when they are challenged as to their involvement.
Common Purpose candidates are given a two day residential course in which they are ‘trained’ in a closed residential environment, such as a small hotel. They are encouraged to reveal significant personal information about themselves, such as their likes, dislikes, ambitions and dreams. Discussions are then controlled by the course leaders. Some participants have likened this to Delphi technique or the application of group psychology such as Cognitive Dissonance or brainwashing.
If you suspect Common Purpose is active in your organisation, or see a pattern of incredibly bad decisions, money being wasted, notice bullying, fraud, or threats, note the names of those involved (we've tracked down over a thousand) and please contact us. And publish the truth about Common Purpose as widely as you can.
See http://eutruth.co.uk to take further action.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
How did she do that? The answer is far easier than you might think, and is open to every one of us as well! She made certain that she was right with God and then she got plugged into the PRIME POWER SOURCE, which is Jesus Christ Himself. The wonderful news is that YOU can do just the same, dear reader, when you plug into that eternal Power Source. We have Christ's promise in John 14, verses 12 to 14:
12.Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
13. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
14. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
Whenever you reach out and touch someone, whether it's to shake them by the hand, to comfort them with a touch of tenderness, or to give them a hug, DO IT IN THE NAME OF JESUS! That way you will be touching them in His name and they will be blessed by His touch.
The power source is there. All you have to do is to make certain that you are always well and truly PLUGGED IN!
Sunday, August 10, 2008
(Reading: Matthew 26.6-13)
Hundreds of holy cows used to wander the villages of the East, devouring the food of hungry peasants, yet they were defended with fervour. The thought of butchering them to provide food for the hungry was as appalling as the burden of maintaining them, so they lumbered through the land for centuries, dominating the scene by their enormous intrusive presence.
Saturday, August 9, 2008
Only Jesus . . .
I read recently about a film that was once made about Jesus, in which an archaeologist of world renown made an announcement to the world upon his return from an expedition to Israel. He claimed to have found the tomb where Jesus had been laid following the crucifixion, but this was not all. He announced to the whole world that the tomb was not empty, but contained the mummified remains of a youngish man. The news was received throughout the world, throwing people into a panic the whole world over! So, the masses chanted, it had all been an elaborate hoax after all. It must 'have been, for how could you argue when such a discovery had been made, and by one so eminent and trusted.
Throughout the world people started to tear crucifixes from their walls, throwing away anything which served to remind them of the great hoaxer. Almost overnight priests of all denominations lost their jobs. Many thousands of people, unable to come to terms with the collapse of all that they had ever believed in, committed suicide rather than face life alone. Bibles were burned by the load. Soon there was little trace of this man who had claimed to be God's own Son, and yet who had been proved to be nothing but a charlatan by this archaeologist.
The best that people could say about Jesus was that He had been a great man in His day, adding that it would be good for the world to have someone like that around all of the time. As the years rolled by He was soon forgotten, consigned to the history books. Churches were either pulled down or converted to commercial or residential use. Man finally had come to terms that there was nothing more to life than that which you found here and now. Then one day the papers ran a story that the archaeologist who had exposed the fraud of Jesus was seriously ill and not expected to live more than a few days. On his death-bed he finally confessed that his claims had been a lie, that in fact when he opened the tomb it was empty. How much damage his lie had done. What started out perhaps as a hoax had been responsible for destroying so many lives, and stealing hope from people.
Often today you can meet people who claim that Jesus was just a great man - nothing more. Two thoughts lie behind this assertion:
Jesus was a man who was later idealised by His followers - rather like a hero in a folk story.
- There simply is no God or supernatural.
Some of the best evidence for the existence of God comes, however, when we study the claims, character and actions of Jesus.
If you are faced with the assertion that Jesus was no more than a great man then your response should be to comment that you find it an interesting point, and would be interested to hear the speaker prove from all of the recorded evidence that Jesus was only a man. When you consider that his disciples were staunchly monotheistic then there must have been overwhelming evidence for the deity of Christ. The facts of history show that Jesus is in a class of His own, and is far more than just a great man.
- Unlike Muhammad, Buddha, Confucius and other founders of world religions:
Only the coming of Jesus was foretold in detail centuries prior to His arrival. His birthplace, His parents, His life, death and resurrection, were all foretold. When Herod asked the teachers of the law to check the prophecies about the Messiah's birth, they were able to tell him where to look for Jesus. He fulfilled over three hundred prophecies in detail.
- Only Jesus said that He came from outside the world. Others claimed messages, revelations, insights, but none claimed to come from outside this world.
- Only He said that He was without sin in His character and backed it up by the way He lived. It's characteristic of saints and spiritual leaders that the more they develop the more conscious they become of their ignorance and shortcomings. Jesus was never like this, and yet was never arrogant about His life.
- Only Jesus declared that He was God and backed it up by a life of wisdom, authority, humility and love.
- Only He died for the sin of the world, the result of our rebellion against God. Other people just died. Jesus Christ was born to die.
- Only He rose from the grave as He promised He would. You can visit the tomb of Mohammed and find his bones still there. After Buddha was cremated his ashes were buried in ten centres in India.
So was Jesus a liar? People lie for profit. When the lie is unprofitable or when death threatens, then they confess. Jesus confessed nothing. People also lie for selfish reasons, yet every aspect of Christ's personality shows that he was selfless.
So what about lunacy? We sometimes hear of schizophrenics claiming to be Jesus. Schizophrenia is a symptom of a very disturbed personality. In every way Jesus displays balance, humility, poise and selflessness, not the marks of mental illness or megalomania. He came to serve and to give His life.
The only logical conclusion once the facts have been studied is that Jesus was exactly who He said He was. That He was Lord is the only conclusion that fits the facts.
If Jesus Christ is God, then nothing is more important than your relationship to Him. He is Lord.
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
By Jan Markell
I have to conclude that the primary goal here is unbiblical ecumenical unity. The second goal is to get Christians to see Islam in a positive light. Sharing the gospel with Muslims is not part of the agenda with this interfaith effort, even though thousands of Muslims are turning to Christ today. If this element were a part of the plan, it would be less egregious. I ask, "Where is the outrage toward the evangelical leaders who are promoting this agenda?" It has long been the standard of congregations who are a part of the National Council of Churches to promote ecumenical unity and praise false religions. Now that so-called evangelical organizations are doing the same, is there a dime's worth of difference between them? Forgive my cynicism but I think the Muslims are laughing all the way to Mecca. RADIO: Our programming from last weekend is posted at "Radio Archives." Learn of some of the "101 Last Days Prophecies" with Jim Tetlow and about vanishing discernment today with Sandy Simpson from Deception in the Church. Our archived programming is even dial-up friendly if you don't have DSL. For podcasting information, visit this link. We are live Saturdays, 9 to 11 AM CDT out of AM980 KKMS, Minneapolis/St. Paul, simulcast with AM820 KGNW, Seattle/Tacoma, 7 to 9 AM PDT. We are heard nationally through affiliates and satellite and internationally via the Internet.
You can always "listen live" at AM980 KKMS or AM820 KGNW.
Tune: All to Jesus
Saved for glory by the Saviour,
Christ is all in all to me;
I will tell the wondrous story,
How He came to set us free.
Saved by Christ alone!
Saved by Christ alone!
Saved for glory by the Saviour,
Saved by Christ alone!
He came down to bring us freedom,
From man’s own self-righteous law;
Came to grant us free salvation,
Tell it out from door to door.
Christ, the one Son of the Father,
God incarnate came to earth;
When you claim through Him redemption,
Through God’s Spirit get rebirth.
You can claim this glorious blessing,
You receive the bounty free;
You can sing the Saviour’s story,
Tell it out aloud like me.
Tell the world you’re saved for glory,
That in heav’n one day we’ll meet;
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
We will worship at their feet.
© Colin Gordon-Farleigh, 2006
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
I've always tried to make sure that I listen out for God's voice in order that I know what He wants of me. Sometimes I have heard that voice as if it spoke right next to me, and this has happened at moments of great revelation in my life such as the time that I knew God was calling me into full-time ministry. I guess that my only explanation is that I expect to hear God speaking to me.
So often I have had people ask me why 'special' things seem to happen to me in my Christian life, and the only answer that I have is that I expect them to. After all, my God is all-powerful, and there is nothing that He is incapable of, so why should we be so surprised when things happen to us that have a beneficial impact on our spiritual lives. Surely, to go through life and not expect anything to happen to you is a sign of weakness in your faith?
Jesus said, "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go to the Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it." (John 14: 12-14 NAS).
Often in the Bible, we discover Jesus has taken Himself apart from the others in order to pray in communion with God the Father. These were the times when His mission was reiterated and strengthened. They were times of renewing and refreshing. Jesus knew that He needed to Go to the Father in order to submit Himself completely to the Father's will, and that in so doing He would receive the strengthening and the refreshing that He needed to fulfil all that was asked of Him. It's no different for us as His followers, for if we truly want to follow Him then we must do all that we can to be like Him, emulating the way in which He lived, walked, touched, spoke, and prayed. If it was necessary for Jesus who was perfect to pray to His Father for renewing and for guidance, how much more do we --- with all of our imperfections --- need to do the same. It's only by submitting ourselves totally to God through prayer and in the name of Jesus that we will know the path that He wants us to take, and receive the strength that we need in order to fulfil God's will for our lives.
We must let God dictate the small things as well as the big things, handing our lives over to Him completely. That way we will experience REVIVAL through the constant renewing of our minds in Christ, and be able follow the leading of our hearts that are Christ-centred.
Boring? NEVER! The journey has been so exciting this far, and there is so much more left to do and to experience. What a wonderful blessing it has been, it is and it will be! That's because our God is unchanging --- the same yesterday, today and for ever! Praise the Lord!
I have never regretted giving my life to Him for one millisecond, and I pray that He will continue to use me to help others in their spiritual walk, to encourage, to touch, to heal, and the myriad other tasks that He sets before me. one thing is sure, as long as I walk with Jesus I will never be alone and I will most certainly never find myself bored!
God bless you!