Hebrews 6: 1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, 2. Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of the laying on of hands, and of the resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
Note that it refers to the Doctrine of Baptisms (plural). Today I want to address the Doctrine of Water Baptism by looking at the scriptures. The purpose of this writing is to encourage the believer that after he or she has established the foundational doctrines of Christ in their lives, they are to go on unto perfection, not laying again the foundational doctrines of Christ. In other words, the only way to advance and move onward is to first get the foundation right. Being a builder myself, I understand the importance of a good foundation. If the foundation isn’t right the building will suffer just as in the parable that Jesus spoke of the Wise and Foolish builder. The Wise build upon the sayings of Jesus and his house stood the storm, the floods, the winds and was still remaining even after the beating it took. The foolish ignored the foundation and suffered total loss.
We need to understand that in order to endure the storms and trials and sufferings against your spiritual edifice, we will have to have a good and solid foundation. The foundation is the first and one of the most important aspects of any building. If ignored or cheap skated, the building and the builder will suffer and most likely there will always remain regrets and future complications for not getting it right.
Many in this day of confusing voices and doctrines of devils, false teachers and false prophets, ignore the very basic foundational doctrines of Christ Jesus. There are those that say water baptism is non essential, others say it is okay not not required. They use as their argument the thief on the cross by saying, he wasn’t baptised and Jesus told him that he would be with him in paradise. We need to understand that the thief of the cross died in a different dispensation. He died under the law of Moses. He died before the Death, Burial and Resurrection of Jesus Christ which consummated the Plan of Salvation for New Testament Believers. The New Testament Church and a New Dispensation began when the Lord Poured out his Spirit on the Day of Pentecost.
Water Baptism was always a requirement for New Testament Believers. It wasn’t an option as some say. Jesus Himself said, “He that believeth and is Baptised shall be saved. Believing is obeying and practicing the things that God Commands. The Just live by Faith. Faith towards God always causes us to do what is expected of us. Remember Jesus said he that hears and does his sayings are the wise builders. Jesus Commanded water baptism, The Apostles commanded water baptism. On the Day of Pentecost, after the outpouring of God’s Spirit upon the believers; men gathered in Jerusalem asked when they were convicted of their sin and their previous rejection of Christ, their Messiah fifty days earlier, they said men and brethren, what shall we do and Peter commanded them to Repent and be Baptised in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and be filled with the Holy Ghost. Thsoe that gladly obeyed his command, did exactly what he commanded, they repented of their sins and were Baptised in Jesus Name and God added unto the Church about three thousand souls that day.
In Acts chapter 8, Phillip took the Gospel to Samaria. The Bible tells us that there was great joy, miracles and healings and great signs of the Gospel. The Bible tells us that when the Samaritans believed the preaching of Phillip concerning the Kingdom of God and the Name of Jesus Christ, they were baptised, men and women. Noticing the events, The Preaching of the Kingdom of God, The Name of Jesus Christ and then it was Repentance from dead works, because they gave up their sinful practices. It was Faith Towards God by responding to the command of water baptism. The Samaritans believed and obeyed in Faith.
The same Phillip was told by God to go out into the wilderness and there he encountered an Ethiopian that was returning after going to Jerusalem to worship. God spoke to Phillip and told him to go and join himself to that chariot. When he got there the Ethiopian was reading the Prophecies about Christ in the Old Testament from the book of Isaiah. Phillip began at that place and preached Christ unto him. It is obvious that he must have preached water baptism because the Ethiopian desire to obey and requested to be baptised. Notice, It was Desire of the Ethiopian, Faith towards what he heard and obedience to what he heard that caused him to go on his way rejoicing.
In Acts Chapter 10, Peter went to Cornelius house. Cornelius was a Gentile and in many ways was a good man. He prayed often, fasted, gave to the poor, but he needed to hear the preaching of God’s Word concerning Christ. Peter began to preach and something awesome happened, The Holy Ghost was poured out and the Jewish believers that accompanied were astonished because God Poured out his Spirit on the Gentiles. Peter then commanded the Gentiles in Cornelius House to be Baptised in the name of the Lord Jesus. Again obedience is required. Being baptised is an act of Faith and obedience on our part.
In Acts 9, Saul was filled with the Holy Ghost and was baptised in Jesus Name.
In Acts 16 The Philippian Jailer and his house hold were Baptised in Jesus Name.
In Acts 19 about twelve disciple that were under the teaching of John the Baptist were Baptized in The Name of the Lord.
Everywhere the Gospel is Preached and men and women embraced the Word of God they were always baptized. Many have trivialized Water Baptism, but it is the answer of a good conscience towards God as Peter said. Also Water Baptism is for the Remission or washing away of sins. Have you been Baptised in the Name above every Name? The Only Saving Name. Jesus our Salvation.
Many wave cheapened the Gospel by saying all you have to do I believe, but I read where it says we must repent of dead works, have faith towards God and be Baptised of Water and Spirit. Jesus told Nicodemus that he must be born again of the Water and of the Spirit to enter into the Kingdom of God.
Be Baptised in Jesus Name. It is a Foundational Doctrine of Christ, a command of God.
Hebrews 6: 1 ¶ Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,
2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
In Part 1 we saw that the very first foundational Doctrine of the True Believer is Repentance from dead works. We have all sinned and have come short of the Glory of God. We found that the only way we can begin building a spiritual house is by repenting of our sins. Except we repent we shall perish. In Repentance we turn towards God.
The second foundational doctrine is faith towards God. Every thing of God comes through Faith. Without Faith it is impossible to please God.
Hebrews 11: 6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
The Scriptures Tell us that it takes faith to please God. It also states that whatsoever is not of faith is sin. When we seek God for answers and needs the Bible tells us that God is faithful. He is pleased when we trust Him and call upon Him. He really desires to bless us and help us in all of our infirmities.
Faith towards God causes us to call upon Him and pray unto Him. When we cast all our care upon Him it is a show of faith that we are seeking His will, His guidance, His mercy, His strength, His grace. Oh how we need him. We live by faith, We walk by Faith. Faith in God causes us to triumph over evil and causes us to be over-comers.
Faith towards God causes us to have a good report just like the patriarchs of old. Faith towards God empowers us to go forth and do good works. Faith without works is dead. Faith towards God causes is a Shield and a Breastplate of armor. Faith moves Mountains.
Faith towards God caused Daniel to Pray regardless of the threat of the Lions den. Faith towards God caused the three Hebrew young men to stand up against idolatry and the threat of the fiery furnace. Faith towards God caused Peter and the Apostles when threatened, not to preach in the Name of Jesus, to respond, we ought to obey God rather than man. They kept on preaching and healing in that Marvelous Name of Jesus. Faith towards God caused the Apostle Paul to keep pressing on Preaching, Evangelizing, and witnessing in every city. Even in the face of many perils and much pain and imprisonment, Paul said he was not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Faith towards God caused Abraham to go and offer up his son because he knew that God was faithful that promised. Faith towards God caused Moses to reject Egypt’s treasures and pleasures. Faith towards God caused Abel to offer a sacrifice that was pleasing towards God. Faith towards God caused Enoch to walk with God in a day of compromise, when other sons of God were walking away from God, Enoch stayed close to God. Faith towards God caused Joseph to hold on to his dream. faith towards God caused Noah to move with fear and build the ark that saved himself and his family.
Just like these, faith towards God is how we walk, how we talk, how we live, what we do and how we respond. Faith is all about action. It is being a living Epistle read and known of all men. faith causes us to produce the fruit of the Spirit and go about doing good unto all.
A believer in Jesus Christ is active and not passive. A believer in Jesus Christ stands firmly in His or Her Faith. They are building a spiritual house. They are about their father’s Business. The resist evil and overcome evil with good. Faith in Jesus causes us to obey His word and become hearers and doers of His Word.
Jesus marveled over the Faith of The Centurion. He marveled over the faith of a woman that pressed through the crowd just to touch His Garment, for she said within herself, If I can just touch His Garment, I shall be made whole…and she was.
Have faith in GOD. Faith towards God brings us a good report. Faith towards God keeps us humble and in submission to God. Faith towards God causes us to obey the word of God by repenting and confessing our sins. Faith towards God causes us to obey His Word and keep His Commandments.
1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, 2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
Repentance is a change of heart, a change of mind, a change of direction, a change of lifestyle. Godly repentance brings a change in the way one thinks and acts.
Jesus said, except you repent you shall perish. In order to be saved from sin, we must repent and live in submission to the Spirit of God.
When one repents there is an acknowledgment of sin and a feeling to true remorse. A Godly sorrow that brings about a genuine change.
Jesus met a man named Zacchaeus. Zacchaeus was a tax collector. Most people did not have much respect for publicans because they were crooks. They used their power and position to defraud and take advantage of people by charging too much taxes. They benefited from their positions by intimidation and strong-arming. There was something in the heart of Zacchaeus that caused him to want to see Jesus. He was a small man of stature, so he climbed up a sycamore tree to see Jesus. Jesus stopped and called Zacchaeus to come down because he was going to his house. Zacchaeus was so touched and impressed he had a change of heart. Deep down he was sincere and knew that he needed to change his ways. What he was doing was wrong. He was dead in sins and trespasses against God. He had works but they were dead works. Works of unrighteousness.
We understand that a change of heart come from the Lord. When we repent and turn our hearts towards God and truly ask God for mercy and forgiveness, He is faithful to forgive us of all unrighteousness and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Note the change that happened in Zacchaeus Heart.
And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold. 9 And Jesus said unto him, this day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham.
In contrast we find in the Scriptures a heart that simply did not want to change. That heart was stubborn and defiant. That heart was rebellious and filled with anger and pride. The one I am speaking of is Cain. When Cain was rejected by God, He became even more defiant. He knew what was right, he simply was defiant and rebellious. The Bible tells us that stubbornness and rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft and idolatry. It is amazing that so many exhibit this same stubbornness and rebellion. They know what is right, they are simply determined that it will be done their way. Cain knew what was right. Even when approached by God and the Lord gave him an opportunity to find forgiveness and acceptance, Cain. dug his heels in and resisted. He continued to live for quite some time, but when he failed to humble himself and submit, he died within and went out from the presence of the Lord. It is sad when humanity gets so out of touch with God they resist even the Authority and voice of God. They become worshippers of the creature and fail to bow to God and submit to the righteousness of God. Cain knew what he was required to do, but instead the pride of life ruled. Cain was filled with anger and determined to do it his way.
The Bible tells us of a Prophet of God that was called to go to Nineveh and preach. The people of Nineveh were exceedingly wicked and filled with violence. They needed to repent but as the scriptures tell us how can someone believe without a preacher. God chose preaching to save the lost. Just as Noah preached righteousness before the flood and warned of coming judgment. Just as Jonah needed to preach repentance unto Nineveh to warn them of impending judgment. The only way Nineveh could be spared from the wrath of God was to repent. The only way they could repent and changed was for a preacher to go to Nineveh and let them know that God was not pleased with them and that they needed to change. Except we repent we shall perish. Jonah disobeyed, he ran the opposite direction. He went down to Joppa and caught a ship to Tarshish. He did not want to go to Nineveh. He rebelled against God. Jonah needed to repent, but instead of obey God; he went down into the ship and went to sleep.
We must recognize that God who is merciful and long suffering desires to spare and save the lost. The scriptures tell us that God is not willing that nay should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
Nineveh needed to hear the message of repentance but before they could change their evil ways God had to work on the disobedient preacher. Jonah didn’t want to preach to Nineveh. He ran away. God knows how to get our attention and when He does, it will bring us to our knees in repentance (hopefully!!!). It is always better that we humble ourselves and repent of every action and deed that grieves the Holy Spirit.
Jonah had three days and nights to repent, that is the mercy and grace of God. Jonah went down to the bottoms of the mountains. He cried out to God in repentance as he floated around in the bile and waste of that fish’s belly. Sin always takes us lower than we ever intended to go. God was gracious to the backslidden and disobedient Prophet and hear his cry. Jonah said that he cried out from the belly of hell. Three days of suffering a horrible and slow death resulted in life coming forth. God spared Jonah because He wanted Nineveh to repent. Jonah went to Nineveh and cried out yet in forty days Nineveh shall be overthrown. The scriptures tell us that Nineveh believed the preaching of Jonah and repented. They quit their evil and perverted ways. They laid aside their violence. They called out to God and Fasted and Prayed from the King to the Servant. Jonah should have been ecstatic because God just used him to preach one of the greatest revivals of all time. Nineveh found the mercy of God but Jonah wasn’t happy. God had some further work to do on the thinking of Jonah. The Bible tells us that the Angels of Heaven rejoice when sinners repent. We all need to repent. Except we repent, we shall perish.
Repentance changes us and they way we think and the way we live.
Dead works are contrary to the Nature of God. Man gravitates towards dead works must repent. That’s why the Bible gives us direction so we can know that there are behaviors, actions and works that must be repented of.
The Ten Commandments are about our relationship with God and man. The Fruit of the Spirit is what we should seek to produce. The Beatitudes are how we are supposed to live. Let us live in the Spirit so we do not fulfil the works of the flesh.
No wonder that Repentance is one of the Foundational Doctrines of Faith.
The Book of Hebrews Chapter 6 Verse 1 and 2 clearly reveal that these foundations once established are settled and are never to be altered or ignored.
Hebrews 6: 1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of dead works, and of faith towards God, 2. Of the doctrines of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
In the Next few weeks I want to briefly address all of the foundational doctrines of the Apostles of Jesus Christ, because we must be built on this foundation. A foundation is one of the beginning and most important aspects of any building. As in Matthew 7:21-27 Jesus said that a wise builder will dig deep and lay his foundation on a rock. He went on to say that when a person hears and does what He says this person is a wise builder. A wise builder pays close attention to the details of a foundation.
Matthew 7: 21 ¶ Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
I think in today’s society, that it is important for us to hear what Jesus and His Apostles tell us because The Church is built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets with Jesus Christ being the chief Corner Stone. If we build on any other foundation our house will fall and the losses will be eternal. If we do not love God enough to hear and obey his word as a wise builder, how can we be saved? How can we please God? How can we be a wise builder? Jesus said he that heareth and doeth them is like a wise builder.
The foolish builder ignored the importance of a foundation, he actually bypassed the most important part of his building, the foundation and his fall was great. The storms came, the winds blew and it beat vehemently upon his house and the fall of it was great. The wise builder, hears and does. In other words he acknowledges the importance of the Word of God in his Life and he submits himself to the Authority of God’s Holy Word.
The Psalmist said, “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light into my pathway.” The Word will judge us today or it will judge us on the last day. It’s better for it to judge us today than the last day. Rest assured we will all give account. The next few weeks I am going to teach you how to build effectively. I am going to show you the importance of a foundation and the things we must incorporate into our lives.
Be a wise builder, hear and do what Jesus says. Remember there is no other foundation that will suffice.
Memorial day is often a holiday that we are thankful for. Many are thankful to get an extra day off. Many are thankful for friends and family and a time to get together. I feel we need to look back and remember the sacrifices that have given us Liberty, ad most importantly give thanks unto our God and our fore fathers for the Great Nation we live in. Without the sacrifices of our Nations Fathers, we would not be enjoying the Freedoms we have today. Deep down, I am very Patriotic and Have a Love for Our Nation. I have stood on the Memorial of the USS Arizona in Hawaii and felt such an awesome, deep respect as I stepped off of the boat that ferried us to the Memorial. When we arrived, thee was a man standing weeping and lamenting, ” I can’t stand this place, I can’t stand this place.” This was a full grown man, a big man, but something gripped his heart and his emotions spilled out. I wondered what effected him so. As I stepped on that deck, I felt a deep presence and tears flowed down my cheeks as I considered that below my feet was several hundred remains of my countrymen, buried in a tomb of steel and concrete. I read the names of those that had given their lives as a sacrifice for our freedoms. The USS Arizona is a Memorial that testifies that there are somethings worth remembering. I have visited Yorktown and Boston, and Charleston. I have visited the Battlefields of Previous Sacrifices. These are preserved today lest we forget. They are all testimonies that freedom has a Price. That price often involves the Blood of those who were involved in an effort to Purchase our freedom. If we forget, we will most definitely suffer the results of unthankfulness.
After the Alamo there was a battle cry for the assembled troops that conquered Sana Anna, It was remember the Alamo. That battle cry spurred the U.S. Army to win the battle against the tyranny of oppression. As a Nation, we should remember the sacrifices of those during the Revolutionary War that sacrificed their lives, their possessions and some even lost their families in quest of freedom. We should remember those that served during WW-1 and WW-2, The Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Iraq Wars and even today the War against Islamic Extremism.
Memorials often decorate Town Squares, and Various Places throughout our Nation. They are a reminder that there are somethings worth remembering. Even in the Bible, God had The Children of Israel Stack Stones up in the Jordan riven and on the Land so that the Generations to come would ask and be given the answer that this was the very place that their forefathers crossed into the Promised Land. It would reminded them that It was God that Gave them the Land. It would remind them that God provided a miracle of parting the waters to allow them to cross on dry ground. God warned Israel that there was a danger of forgetting. When they entered into the Promised Land, they could get comfortable and forget. The Bible warns us to beware lest we forget.
Hebrews 2: 1 ¶ Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.
2 For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward;
3 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him;
I want to especially remember that it was Jesus that died for my Spiritual freedom. His Precious Blood made an Atonement for my Soul. He laid down His Life for me. for that I am Grateful and Thankful. We as a Nation have been blessed because of Jesus and His Gospel that liberates men from all Nations. Whosoever shall call on the Name of the Lord shall be saved. We call on Him for Forgiveness of our sins. We call on Him in Water Baptism as That Precious Name Jesus is invoked over us, and we call on Him when we seek Him for and receive the Baptism of the Holy Ghost.
I am Thankful for many things. Thankful for Family, Friends, Church, Truth, Freedom, Country and Most Importantly To Our Great God, The Creator, The First and Last, The Almighty God and Only Potentate. The True King of kings and Lord of lords. I am thankful to know Him and have fellowship with Him. He is not only the Creator, He became a man to save us and die for our sins. He has risen triumphant, victorious over death, hell and the grace. The is the author and finisher. He is the only Savior. Blessed be the Name above all names.
I am Thankful. God Bless.
In the Bible we find men approaching Jesus with tough questions. These questions were well thought out. Some of these questions were designed to attempt to trap Jesus so they could uses his answers against Him by saying that He was in disagreement with the Law of Moses. These men asked with an agenda, they were not curious, they were not seeking God for answers, they were not trying to come to a better understanding, they simply had the motive to justify themselves. Their motive was to explain away or excuse their condition and their belief. What is in the hearts of men that we feel that we must justify our actions and beliefs even at the sake of violating known ethics.
Luke 10: 25 And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
26 He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?
27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind: and thy neighbor as thyself.
28 And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do and thou shalt live.
29 But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbor?
This man knew the answer. He knew what was right, he knew what was expected. Fair balances, Equity, and Righteousness was expected by God regarding His People. This lawyer simply wanted to be selective in his application. He wanted to justify himself.
Men often caught in a weakness, point fingers in every direction but themselves. It has been stated that when we point a finger at others three more are pointing back at us. The blame game is played. Men begin to justify themselves and not take responsibility for their actions and behavior. In the Garden, God asked the man Adam what he had done and immediately Adam said, “The woman You gave me…” He was blaming God as well as His wife. When God asked the woman, Eve said, “The serpent…” Since God was the creator of all things, she was blaming God and the serpent. Again we find that sin is often explained away in order to justify itself. Cain, Adam and Eve’s son murdered their other son, Abel. Cain was self willed and disobedient and he attempted to justify himself and expected God to accept his offering even though it was not right and he knew it was not right. In his anger of being rejected he ignored the admonition of God to simply repent and do what was right. In stead he willing to justify his wrong when out and slew his brother.
Because of the nature of sin, man can never justify himself. All have sinned and have come short of God’s Glory. There are none righteous, no not one. All we like sheep have gone astray.
The Bible tells us of two men that went to the Temple to Pray, one was a Publican and the other was a Pharisee. The Publican fell upon his face and began to ask for mercy. He admitted that he needed forgiveness and Pardon. He needed a changed heart. He admitted guilt, he confessed his sins and asked God for Mercy. The Pharisee, in an attempt to justify himself, began t tell God how good he was. He stood upright and said, Lord I thank you that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust adulterers or even as this publican, I fast twice a week, I tithe of all that I possess. Jesus responded that the Publican that admitted guilt and was sorrowful for his sins left there that day justified.
Justification only comes from God. If we attempt to justify ourselves we will deceive ourselves as well. The Bible gives us the direction for us to humble ourselves and seek his face and repent of our sins. That is the only way that Justification can come. It doesn’t come to the Proud or arrogant, or disobedient. It comes by admission that we need a Savior. The only Savior of mankind is Jesus Our Lord. He is the Way, The Truth, and The Life.
Faith in Christ Jesus and His Redemptive Works, Justifies us and saves us from wrath. Abraham was justified when his works were in agreement with God. Rahab the Harlot was justified by her Faith and Works. When we repent of our sins, are Baptized in His Saving Name, Jesus, and Receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost, we too are Justified. It does matter what you do and how you live. You can go though life and on the day of judgement and attempt to justify yourself or you can become submissive and obedient to God and let His works Justify you.
1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the Name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.
Paul was saying that these Corinthians who were once deep in sin, were now justified by their faith and their response of obedience to the Gospel.
Recently our Nation was once again caught off guard by terrorist. Terrorism is a terrible thing among humanity. To kill, maim, destroy and change forever the lives of unknown, unsuspecting and innocent people is an atrocious thing indeed. Who can imagine such hatred, such evil, such malice among mankind. Surely those that do such diabolical things have an agenda. They desire to be heard. They desire to be famous, there is something in their human spirit that vies for attention. They, at all cost will seek the preeminence as Diotrephes in the Bible that Paul spoke of; he loved the preeminence. He had to be in the center ring at all costs. He had to be the one with the most importance and self value. There was no submission to Authority, there was no obedience to ethics and scruples.
When we think of September 11, 2001 and the three thousand that lost their lives, the extremist army soldier that killed his comrades in Fort Hood Texas, The Recruiter executed in Arkansas by a converted extremist from Memphis, the executions on live feeds all around the world, suicide bombers, the list goes on and on. Do we not remember the Marine Barracks in Beirut. The Bombing of the USS Cole. The Bombings of the World Trade Center in New York; back in the Mid Nineties. The Bombings of our Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, and recently Libya. This is not just isolated events, in actuality this goes back to numerous Highjacked planes in the sixties. Even back then there was a move to infiltrate and destroy innocent lives.
Many were shocked to find out the identity of these two brothers. Some said about the younger that they couldn’t believe it. He was known to be polite, courteous and kind. This is the worst kind of enemy. The one that pretends to be a part or to be a friend and then ambushes or broadsides the unsuspecting. This is a spirit that is evil indeed. God has a place prepared for such evil and wicked individuals. It is called hell. Hell is a horrible place where the soul never dies but lives forever in torment. It is a place of one eternal night without a day. There will be no friends in hell. There will be no happiness in hell. There will be no relief in hell. There will be no parties in hell. Hell is a place for the devil and his angels. The scriptures clearly warn that all liars, thieves, idolaters, murderers and those to do abominations will find their place in the lake of fire.
I know that hell is not a popular subject, but hell is real and hell is hot and hell is eternal.
I had the Privilege of visiting the North East a few years ago on a cruise and had the honor of touring the Great City of Boston. I found the people of Boston, kind, friendly and I truly enjoyed the deep roots of History that pertains to this Great Nation. We should never forget that it was in this very area, as well as others that secured the Freedom of America. The Blood of our Fathers was shed in this area. The Sacrifices of the Men that fought to win and secure the freedoms that we enjoy today is still being felt.
I salute My Fellow Countrymen and Give Honor to them in this time of tragedy. I want to say that I am very Patriotic as well as Spiritual, and I do believe that we have enjoyed the Blessings of God as a Nation. As a Nation we have risen to the occasion to help others secure their freedoms. We have sent foreign aid and Missionaries not only to feed the poor but to show others The Kindness of God. We have provided money to rebuild and help the unfortunate to their feet after Tragedy or hardship. I say GOD BLESS America. I understand that there is a lot of wrong in our Nation. I understand that men of our Nation have lurked in the dark shadows of rebellion and sin. Many have denied the existence of God. I understand that we have a lot that we need to repent for and change. I want to encourage everyone that will listen, let us do as 2 Chronicles 7:14 admonishes us to do.
If my people which are called by my name shall humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven and will forgive their sins and will heal their land. May God Bless America. The Scriptures are plain, Righteousness exalts a Nation but sin is a reproach to any people.
The worst kind of enemy is the one that will not repent. The worst kind of enemy is the one that looks at them selves in the mirror and refuses to correct what they really are and what they see. The worst kind of enemy is one that is driven by selfishness, anger, greed, vengeance and hatred. The Person that will not conquer, will not control their lusts and will not or repent of their own weaknesses. The Person in the mirror is our worst enemy. We all have a fallen nature and that is why we need God’s mercy and grace to forgive us and cleanse us and give us a new heart. A heart that delights in the Lord. A heart that believes and submits to the Authority of Almighty God. We need a heart that rejoices in the Truth. It is the Truth that makes free. Let us turn our hearts to the One True God, The Only Potentate, The King of Glory. The Creator and All Mighty God. Our Great Eternal Father. God Help us!!!
GIVE US LIBERTY!!! Our freedoms are all about GOD, AND DOING GOOD. GOD BLESS AMERICA. God resists the Proud but gives grace to the humble. The truely humble.
I have recently been teaching a series on being an over-comer. It is a truth that God’s People are to be over-comers. The Word Overcomer means to prevail, to Triumph, to gain the victory, to make advancement. It is going forward and making forward progress. We can’t be over-comers in a survival mode.
God told the Children of Israel to go forward. That certainly applies to us as well. If there was ever a time that we must go forward, it is today. We are not called to survive but to endure unto the end. Endurance means we are in the race for the long haul. The finish line is the object and passion. This means that we are come come out victorious over all enemies that come against us. There are enemies of the Gospel, Enemies that war against the soul, enemies within and without. The only way to prevail and be victorious is to determine that we are more than conquerors through Jesus Christ that loved us and gave himself for us.
In his writings, the Apostle Paul made it clear that he was determined to finish the race. He had one prize in mind and that was to be crowned with the crown of righteousness. The only way we can achieve this wonderful, victorious prize is to finish our course. Paul’s course brought him pain and suffering, it brought him persecution and imprisonment. It brought him beatings and stonings. It brought him perils of every thing imaginable.
Jesus said in this life you shall have persecution, but be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world. As believers we have to endure hardness, persecution, chastisement, temptation and a multitude of afflictions, however, we have the victory through Jesus Christ. I want to encourage you to be faithful, be steadfast, be determined to win the victory. Walk humbly with God and he will bless, comfort, and strengthen you. He is a very present help in trouble. He is faithful that promised and will never leave nor forsake you. He will be with you. Be not weary in well doing. Hang in there. Keep the faith, for God has called you and chosen you and ordained that you be an over-comer.
We must overcome the world as Jesus did.
We must overcome the flesh as Jesus did.
We must overcome satan as Jesus did.
Jacob was given a name that meant supplanter. Deep down inside there was a competitiveness within Jacob that made him a fighter. He spent his life struggling to stay ahead or at least even with his brother. He seemed to come behind in his fathers eyes in comparison to Esau. The Scriptures tell us that Isaac loved Esau and Rebekah loved Jacob. Let me say that all Children are different. Jacob and Esau were twins, born by the same parents, minutes apart, raised by the same parents, yet these boys turned out entirely different. Esau was a hunter, an outdoors-man and Jacob was a home body that didn’t take up hunting or fishing.
My Oldest son has twins and it is fun to watch them interact with each other. All Children are unique and deserve the guidance, nurturing and same love from both parents. Parents need to mentor their Children and raise them up to serve God and walk with him. Children are Precious and as a Grandfather I love and enjoy our Grandchildren. They make my heart smile.
Jacob seemed to live up to his name, Supplanter, Trickster, Huckster, and was willing to do whatever it took to get ahead. He was no slacker. He was not content being the second born even though it was just by minutes. In that day there was a custom that the eldest received the Birthright which entitled him to a double portion of the inheritance and also made him the leader of the family. Jacob deep down desired to have that privilege and it really didn’t seem to matter to Esau because one day he agreed to sell his birthright for a bowl of beans. He was starving from being out in the woods and taking no game and had returned home and smelled that aroma from a distance. Jacob capitalized on the situation and traded Esau a bowl of beans for the Birthright. The Bible tells us that Esau despised his birthright. In the eyes of God Esau thought so little of the Privilege and inheritance that he swapped it to gratify the flesh. That did not automatically make it a done deal. Jacob had to someway get Issac to confer the blessing upon him and not Esau. Rebekah and Jacob used deception to obtain the birthright and blessing from his Father.
Aren’t we glad that God our Heavenly Father delights to bestow the blessing upon us. Our decision and attitudes do have a bearing on His Covenant and Blessing upon our lives. We are to live honestly and walk worthy of the vocation. If we have a desire for the Things of God, He will bless us. Even the Bible tells us to covet Spiritual Gifts that should be used to edify The Church. Coveting things of others is a grievous sin, but God really does want us to desire Spiritual Things and we do not have to flimflam our way in order to receive them. He delights to Give us Good Things. We are to ask in order to receive. We are to seek in order to find. We are to knock for doors to be opened.
While Jacob did receive the Birthright and did go on to Receive the approval and blessing of God, he did have to change his behavior and way of doing things. He was desperate and facing Esau that he had not seen for many years. The last he saw of Esau was the anger and hatred in his brothers eyes when he found out that Jacob had received his blessing.
Jacob was alone and all of a sudden in his night of desperation, he saw a man which was The Angel of The Lord. A wrestling match ensured. Jacob could not gain the advantage but he did hold on. He wrestled and held on until the break of day. This Heavenly visitor said let me go for the day breaketh. Jacob said I will not let you go until you bless me. Jacob was tired of flimflamming his way through life, he needed a change and it was there that he prevailed and God blessed him and made him a prince, for he Prevailed. His name was changed. His way of doing business changed. He walked with a limp from that time forward. When We prevail and seek God for the Changes we need in our life we will prevail if we hang on as Jacob did. We have to be persistent. We have to seek Him until He rains righteousness upon us and Changes us form the hurtful way we have lived. The Things of God do not come without a struggle. The Rich Young Ruler gave up so easily. His Possessions were more important that even the thought of Eternal Life.
Change can and will come, but we have to struggle our way to victory. You have to pray and endure until the blessing comes. You may be in a great battle right now. Hold on and Pray, seek God earnestly, with all your heart. Make good choices and His Blessing will come. Jacob did Prevail with God but his own heart was broken again and again by his deceptive sons. I guess it did not exempt him from receiving what he had sown. Jesus said if we live by the sword we will die by the sword. A man or woman does reap what they sow. Jacob deceived his Father and later his sons and even Laban his Fahter in Law deceived him. Jacob was changed of his deceptive ways of trying to get ahead and became a very honorable man and was blessed of God. That change came when he became honest with himself that he needed a change an only God could change his nature.
God Bless You in Your Struggles it is worth the fight.
He’s Alive Forevermore
17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last:
18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
We celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Truly, He alone has all power, both in Heaven and in Earth. He is the Promise that God gave to Abraham, “through your seed shall all families be blessed.” Asians, Europeans, Africans, Americans, Australians, The remote Islands of the Earth, Surely unto the ends of the Earth, Jesus Christ died for all men. God is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to the knowledge of the Truth. Christ suffered and died for us, HOWEVER THE GOOD NEWS OF THE GOSPEL IS; JESUS IS ALIVE AND VICTORIOUS OVER DEATH, HELL AND THE GRAVE!!!
Because He lives we live as well and have the Hope and Promise to spend Eternity with Him. His Resurrection resulted in the Raising us up from a dead state spiritually. We were by Nature, children of wrath. We were without hope in this world. We were Foreigners, strangers and aliens to the commonwealth of God. Because of our fallen nature that comes short of God’s Glory we were destined to experience the sad and tragic end of what sin does. In the end it brings death, eternal death. We can rejoice in the fact that because Jesus Lives, we can live also. By placing our faith in His works on Calvary, we can be raised up to walk in newness of life. Thank God for His Wonderful plan of Redemption. The scriptures assure us that if the Spirit that raised Christ from the dead dwell in us He shall also resurrect us at His coming. It also states that if we have not His Spirit, we are none of His. We need to be Baptized of Him. His Spirit Quickens and Raises us up to sit together in heavenly places.
For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.
8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Oh the Great love and mercy of God. The Creator, the Great Eternal without beginning and without end, visited us with a great purpose of love. He became a man to die for our transgressions. He willingly took upon himself our sins and our transgressions and became the sacrifice for sins.
He is the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and The End, The First and The Last. He is the Almighty God, The Everlasting And Merciful Father.
Isaiah the Prophet said, unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, The Everlasting Father and The Prince of Peace. He was innocent, Holy, undefiled by sin. He conquered sin in the flesh. He took upon himself all of our guilt, shame, uncleanness and reproach. He nailed the written record of our transgression s to His Cross. He came to bear the iniquity of us all. Oh, what a Savior, Oh, what a Savior. Jesus did not remain in the Grave. The Bible proclaims that He is Risen from the dead. He is Triumphant, Faithful and True. Place your Trust in The Lord Jesus. Call upon Him. Look to Him. Seek Him and He will rain righteousness upon you. He is alive for evermore.