Courage for today

We see the effects of courage and bravery almost every day, although some may not recognize it. You hear about it from the foreign battlefields and in cities and towns all over this great land. Firefighters and policemen and policewomen all exhibit courage even though they don’t think of themselves as heroes or courageous, they are just doing their jobs. It is the same with our service men and women who are out in the field doing their jobs, courageously, selflessly but do they get the credit for what they do? Do any of them get the recognition that they deserve?

In this time and with this administration, they don’t. Mainly because it has no regard or respect for any selfless act of bravery or courage and that is truly sad. We should have a President and a Representative government that is asking the people what they want, not telling us what to do! They should be paying more attention to those who have fought for this country and its freedoms, rather than acting like a dictatorship that has been elected.

We have to show courage and dignity during times of trouble and if someone doesn’t think that we are in trouble today, then they need to check and see if they have a pulse! Our country is on the edge of an abyss that we cannot dig our way out with a bigger shovel, nor can we build a bridge over it, because we don’t have enough people who are willing to work to get it done.

What would’ve happened to the human race if Adam and Eve had just decided to sit down and do nothing after being forced out of Eden? What would’ve become of North America if Columbus had not discovered it? I know that many would say that America would be far different if it had been a couple of hundred years later before it was discovered. The history would be quite different from what happened up until the seventeenth century until today.

Our whole culture would be different, but the point that I am making is that it took courage to explore and to do the things needed in the past to bring about the present. It will also take courage to, somehow, fix the problems which we have today so that there will be a future for our children. It will take hard work and sacrifice and lots of time, because trillions of dollars in debt cannot be wiped away in a decade!

The debt didn’t accumulate in just one decade and it will certainly not go away that easily either. It will take more than America has been investing in itself in a very long time. It will take the same determination and will that the Greatest generation had during WWII, and right now the people in America don’t have it. There are a few people who do, but compared to the majority of Americans, they are few in number.

When the Revolutionary War was fought and independence was declared, our ancestors reached for something that we seem to have lost: courage and Providence. Courage in the people who wanted freedom from England‘s rule and Providence Who provided them with hope. God was that Providence and He had a profound effect on early America because it was due to religious persecution that America became a colony of England. God had His hand in molding our country into the beacon of freedom, religious or otherwise, that it became so that people would want what we had.

I say “had” because that beacon is becoming dim. We have lost the fire and the power to rekindle it because we have pushed God out of, not only our government, but our schools and from some of our homes too. Our military has taken Him out of the oaths that our soldiers take. How much longer can you push God until He pushes back? Do we really want Him to push back? Are we so arrogant that we believe that we could withstand a push from God?

Glenn Beck has it right. We need to get up from our couches, put on some work boots and get back to work! America can be what God intended for it to be if we will do the work needed to get the job done! Nothing worth doing is easy, it is usually hard, but the reward afterward is worth it! I pray that God will bless this nation and its people with the backbone and the will to get up and get the job done, because if they don’t…we’re history.

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Consider the birds

In one of Jesus’ parables, he told His disciples about how God cares even when one sparrow falls to the ground. I found an interesting story about a Christian business owner and I thought I would share it with you. It is many years old, but the message is one that we need today.

I recently read an interesting testimony from a Christian man who owned a construction company. He was losing sleep worrying about some financial problems he faced in his company. One morning, after another night filled with worry, he opened his Bible and devotional guide. That morning he was reading from Matthew 6 where Jesus commanded his followers not to worry. Jesus said, “Consider the sparrows, they don’t plant or harvest, or store in barns, but your heavenly Father takes care of them–and you are much more valuable to him than the sparrows!” In his devotional guide, the message spoke about how God cares for the birds so much when a single sparrow falls dead to the earth, God is aware and God cares. The verse at the end was I Peter 5:7 which says, “Cast your cares upon him, for He cares for you.”

A few days earlier on the job site, they had been removing trees and the owner had noticed one of the trees had a bird nest with baby birds in it. He marked the tree and left word not to cut it down. But on this day, he realized the tree would have to come down because they couldn’t delay the project any longer.

The owner used a bucket truck to lift him up to the bird’s nest. When he looked in, the birds were gone–they had learned to fly. Since he was up there anyway, he removed the nest. You know birds use all kinds of scraps to make a nest. As he examined the nest, he discovered the birds had used straw, twigs, and even little strips of paper to make the nest. He removed one sliver of paper and what he read almost caused him to fall out to the bucket. Written on the fragment were these words, “God cares for you.” He realized God was using that bird nest to reinforce his message. Today, the man’s business is doing well, and he prays more and worries less–and he kept that bird’s nest in his office!

See, God can use a bird to bring a message of hope when you are under stress and worried. Now, He may not use  a bird in your circumstances, but if you notice something that may be out of place a message from God just might be in it. God can use us in many ways too, if we will listen and obey Him when we are told what to do.

Many people are suffering today because of cancer, and because of grief due to the loss of a loved one. They may not be suffering in the way that those which have no hope of Heaven do though, because if you know God and have accepted His love for you through His Son, then your future, your eternity is sealed in Jesus’ blood. You are a child of God by adoption because of the sacrifice that Jesus made to pay for all of our sins.

The debts are paid and have been paid for a long time, but many people reject the One who paid their debt for them. They reject the sacrifice and all that is available to them because of it, Just because of the identity of the One Who made the sacrifice and because they have a different idea about salvation.

Friends, the message contained in the Bible is one of hope and peace, whether mankind has used it in the past to do many wrong things, horrible things is not the issue. Mankind can and does use many holy words and scriptures to twist them into whatever he desires to do with them, just as Satan uses scripture that was written for our benefit and he twists it so that it means something totally different.

We, as a species, are sinful and we are that way from the beginning. Children tell lies even when they don’t know what a lie is. If they can do this, what makes you think that we, as adults, are any better? Your life and the people that are or will be affected by you, for good or bad, are important to God. No other person on the planet is like you or me, we are each unique and different. God made us that way so that He can use us each in ways that nobody else can accomplish. He wants us to accomplish things for us and for Him that only we can do. It is imperative that we realize this and decide to give our hearts and our lives to Him, because the alternative is horrible.

What do you believe?

Are you a theist or an atheist? Do you really think that everything around you was caused by an accidental convergence of matter and protein or was it created by God?

These questions are being asked all over the Internet, on news and talk shows and by people who are just curious, like me. So, what do you believe? Do you have a belief in anything or nothing or is this just existence and when we die, we are dead, period?

From other posts here, it is easy to see what my beliefs are: I believe in God and that He created all that is here and in the universe. I don’t think that anything is an accident, all of it has a purpose. We all have a purpose, and whether that purpose is to oppose others or to agree with them in one sense or another, then each of our purposes are fulfilled.

Truly, my belief shouldn’t offend you, whether you agree with it or not. You don’t know me, and I don’t know you and we can agree to disagree on any number of subjects. Your belief or lack of belief doesn’t offend me, unless you are trying to be offensive.

We cannot all agree on our beliefs in a higher power or our lack of belief in one. It just can’t be done because, beliefs are like opinions everyone has one to some extent. So, what separates people in their belief systems? Is it personal or corporate? I am not sure. It seems that very few people really know what to believe any more, the different research groups have done some polls and it seems that belief is waning in America.

For those under thirty, very few people believe in or even go to a worship service of any kind on a regular basis. Our country, and its citizens are going through such a terrible time, financially, morally, physically for some who have cancer and other diseases. So, why is this happening? What caused all of this and is there a solution?

For those who don’t claim to have a belief in any god or God, there is no human solution that will work. We are not good enough to fix what is happening or what has already happened. It is done and we will just have to deal with the consequences of it. The other problems that plague people daily are some that have come through disease, lifestyle, abuse (whether of substances or people), stress, depression, heartache and fear.

How can anyone, whether they are an atheist and believe in humanistic solutions to our problems or if they are believers, think that there is a solution that mankind can come up with to handle the problems that we are facing today? Most of the problems that we are having today, have actually been around for hundreds of years (with the exception of fossil fuel problems and nuclear problems). So why haven’t we found a solution to them?

If mankind is so smart and so capable, then why hasn’t the overcrowding, war, hunger, and housing problem been solved before now? We are no closer to finding a solution to these than we were a century or more ago! In fact, they have all become worse in the past century. I think that the solution lies not in something being done, but in the One that we are counting on. I am not saying that belief in and dependence upon Jesus will solve all of our problems, but if we truly followed His example of living a servant life toward others, many of our problems would be fixed.

Belief in or about something doesn’t make it true or false. Take the Sun rising tomorrow, is it sure to happen or do you have to believe? What about gravity? This is a force of nature and our own star, they just are, so we naturally know that both are what they are and no more. We don’t have to have faith in the Sun or in gravity to know what it is and that it is there, just as the moon rising at night is nothing that has to be believed in to be seen.

The truth of our existence is that we are beings created in the image of God, and our Creator came in the form of a man to die on a cross so that all of our sin debts have been paid. All that we have to do to receive His Grace and forgiveness is believe in Him and receive it by faith. Forgiveness is God’s love expressed toward us by His Grace and we can’t feel it or touch it, but it is there. I can’t touch my wife’s love for me, but I know it is there. The sinful ways that we live day in and day out, when we are rejecting Jesus, are hurtful to God in ways that we cannot understand. He has loved us and did love us enough to die for us and rise from the grave so that one day, we will as well. Please do your research to find out the truth about Him, before your time here is up, because you won’t get another chance to accept Him after your last breath in this life

 

Lord, we need your help!

Our economy is not in a good place, it is too top-heavy. Too much debt and not enough assets and receipts coming in. No production from the private sector because of regulations and other problems. War on more fronts than we need to be in and too much money being printed to cover our obligations.

Problems in education, in the media, people against belief in God, abortion, murder, rape, etc. the list goes on and on. These are all problems which are happening because of our own reasoning and the way that we have pushed God and His principles away from school and away from public life.

Can we possibly fix this? Not on our own, with our own individual beliefs and with truth being dependent on whose belief system there is. If we are not going to learn the absolute Truth of God and His Word and put it into practice in our lives and in our governments, state, local and national, then our country is doomed. I am not talking about doomed by nuclear attack or war but from cultural decline and decay. Eventually, we will be anarchists and each person, each city will be a law unto itself, like in the west of pre-civil war days.

And this doesn’t even take into account if the economy fails. When that happens, all of the doom and gloom that has been predicted will happen. I don’t know what will happen in our country at that point, but the civil war will likely look like a picnic in comparison. There will be gangs searching for gas, and food and anything else they can steal to sell or barter with because money will be useless.

I know that this is a very gloomy, but it is what will happen if things go the way that the economists have predicted. This is not just my own fear, but it has been written down by people who have followed and watched the government and the way things are going. They have even called it economic Armageddon because of the effect it will have, not only on America but on the world in general.

I know that God is present in our lives, He is watching over us and our country but we have been doing things in this country that He doesn’t approve of. Whether He is part of your life or not, He is present in this time, He knows what we are doing and what we are not doing. He also knows whether we are trusting Him and His Son, or not. Many people today are turning their lives and their backs on anything to do with God and religion both. Why?

Doing things on your own seems to be fun at the time because we are the only ones that we are responsible to. If anything goes wrong, it is our fault and we can’t blame anyone else. Living this way may be fun for a while, if you are careful and don’t get into anything that is too dangerous, but what will you do if something goes wrong that is out of your control? What can you do if you get a diagnosis of cancer, stage four? Your control has been taken from you at that point.

The only person that you can call on at this point is Jesus. The doctor may be able to help a little, but Jesus can do more. Not only can He cure your cancer, but He can provide you with an eternity of life with many friends! I can hear many people saying that they don’t want to be in heaven, they don’t want to be Christians!

That is fine if that is what you want, but I won’t ever see you. There is a separation between the two eternities and hell is not visible from heaven, like it was in the story of Lazarus. That parable was used to show that people have the information that they need to be saved and that they would not believe any more if someone came back from the dead.

The only way that our world and our lives are going to be “fixed” is through the restoration that Jesus will bring to the world and to your life. He will make things right in your life when you accept Him into your heart and into your life. There is nothing that you have to do yourself because Jesus has already done what was required, all you have to do is ask Him into your heart and then walk with Him from that point on. Give it a try, you will be glad that you did!

 

The news is in God’s Word

Have you noticed how much many of the stories in the news today parallel scripture? I am not speaking of the prophecies of the book of Revelation, I am speaking of some prophetic scripture which was written before. Many of the times and the things which were happening during the first century while the apostles were spreading the good news to the world around them, sound as if they came from our time, today! Wars and rumors of wars, murders, groups which were trying to discredit the church and those who were spreading its message, persecution of those who had converted to this “new Way”, these all sound very much like the things which we hear today!

The anti-Christian sentiment has been around since the beginning and although they are working harder today to discredit us and make us seem to be blind followers of a dead prophet, when they are the ones who are following a dead prophet! What about all of the other prophecies which have come true concerning Israel’s people coming back to their land and speaking the language that had been declared dead?

Many of the things that we read in God‘s Word should be taken as literal prophecies, foretelling events which have not happened yet. It should also be realized that the miracles in the time of Moses as well as in Jesus’ time did not come about by man’s intervention, but by God’s. The sea splitting so that they could cross on dry ground, the walls of Jericho falling after the blowing of the trumpets after the people marched around the city seven times, these things were not caused by man forcing God to do something!

That is similar to the way that people take the Word of God today and try to mold it to their way of doing things by saying, “God, I know what you wrote, but…”, when you insert a “but” into this argument you are taking God out of the equation and placing your own wisdom in place of His. So, don’t go blaming Him when something goes wrong. It is your fault because it was you and your “but” that got you into the mess that you are in. God may help you get out of it, but He may choose to let you get yourself out.

Besides, you can’t force God to do anything! He does as He wills and as He deems necessary, not according to our will but His. Give Him credit for being God! He created all that is around us and each person that has ever lived too! He even has a plan for your life if you will give it to Him. Do so while you have a chance to. I am not trying to scare you into giving your life to Jesus, but it is a simple truth that our lives are not guaranteed to last for 87.5 years or whatever your life-span is supposed to be. I may not be here next week, but I am going to keep posting until I have to stop.

In service to Him!

A nightmare of hellish proportions

(To those who may read this be warned, this is the dream that I experienced during a sickness that I had about a year ago. The scenes which I have portrayed in this story were scenes which I was allowed to see, but which frightened me at the time. I have just now been able to put this down in writing so be patient and kind in your comments, but take heed to the warning given.)

I stood looking over the edge of the world as I knew it, I noticed a place that had not been there before. No light illuminated any part of it, although I could see it and see down into its depths. I suppose God was allowing me to see this, whether it was in a dream or a nightmare (more likely), I am not sure but it was frighteningly terrifying to my soul …. to me.

The reason that I say it terrified my soul is because I felt a fear deep down inside, in a place that I didn’t know was there. I couldn’t feel the heat physically but by the look of the place I knew that it was hot, much hotter than any place on earth. There was fire, but it seemed not to be the kind of fire which had light. I know this sounds crazy but this is my nightmare, so it was crazy and I knew that it was a place that I did not want to go. Nor did I want anyone that I know, whether they are a friend or not, to go there either.

There were places which seemed to throb with wave-like motion sort of like an ocean of liquid pitch or tar and yet it was more than that, because it seemed to be the hottest part of this place. Yet, it did not produce flames. I could hear screams of agonizing proportions, as if someone was being cooked, boiled alive in this lake but they would not die or could not die. The screams came at different intervals so I guess it was due to the wave-like action of the lake of fire, since this is the best description that I can give it.

Outside the lake, on the shores of it, there were caves that were just as hot as the lake but they were relatively dry because the oily lake did not reach them. There seemed to be people, damned souls, who were bound inside those caves so that they could not escape. These were those who had not accepted Jesus as their savior in life, but who had attended church or some religious meeting at some point in their lives. Intellectually, they knew of Jesus and what He could do for them, but they never accepted Him. Some had been deacons, some were even former pastors. They had used their position in the church to gain power and money and for some, prestige, but they had missed the real point of their own ministry, the focus that a real ministry is about and that is Jesus.

The information on these souls was given to me by the Holy Spirit and He told me that after I had learned all that I could about what I had seen, He would give me the words to go with it.

The descriptions that I have or can remember of this place had been blocked from my mind until tonight. They were so horrific in their magnitude of pain and suffering along with the certainty of this place being part of hell, if not the very place itself. I am very glad that I didn’t experience this place directly or I might have gone completely mad. The fear that these nightmares brought into my being at night was of a type that I have never felt before. I have been a firefighter and have seen some horrific things but nothing that I had ever seen compared to this.

The imagery that I have used in this portrayal, this story, is the best that I can give because, like John, I saw things, images, which no human eye was meant to see. Hell was not, is not made for us, we were created to reign with Christ, not be punished in hell. It was created as a place of punishment for Satan and those who rebelled against God with him, but if you rebel against God then you are part of Satan’s kingdom. I know this sounds crazy, the images and the fear and terror that they brought out, but this was a nightmare which I experienced and I believe it was for a purpose. Not to write a book and make money off of it, but to use it to tell others about the place that we have been saved from.

It may seem that I am making it up as I go along, but I experienced these nightmarish dreams last year while I was sick and they terrified me so much that I would wake myself, shaking from fright! I have never been that scared before and it is just now that I am able to remember the details by the Spirit’s prompting. The point of this sermon, talk, whatever you want to call it, is to bring into your reality and mine, as much as possible the terror of hell, and also the eternity of it so that no one would want or desire to go there.

Even though we think of glorified bodies that we receive in heaven, in order to endure an eternity of punishment in hell we or at least the people who will go to hell also receive immortal bodies. The difference is that they will endure pain, suffering, and heat that would be enough to kill a mortal body, but they will endure it like the immortal demons and Satan, for eternity. The reason for this punishment is because of one simple decision: the people that I saw decided not to follow Jesus and believe in His atoning blood that was shed for you and for them or they just never got around to it before their time was up.

I know that some will say that I am trying to scare people into believing and following Jesus, and you would be right! I would rather scare you out of going to hell and into a relationship with Jesus, Who many people don’t believe in at all, than to see you go into hell and know that there was a possibility that you could be saved from that eternal place.

If you decide to follow Him and learn from the Living Word while studying the Word, then you will not go to this place. However, if you put it off or just decide that being a Christian is just too much for you in this life, because you want to do your thing and not be held accountable for it, then you are deciding to be on the side with Satan. Hell was prepared for Satan and his demons and those who won’t follow Jesus, who decide that they want their fun rather than finding out about the fun of being a child of the King!

The time is now to make up your mind, so which will it be? An eternity in a place where the heat of the day doesn’t beat down on you and you are living and working with those who decided to love and follow Jesus or an eternity in a place where there isn’t much light at all. Where the heat is not from the sunshine, but from hell itself, where the heat and the burning never end for eternity, because there will be no parties in hell, there will be no place where you can “chill” in hell, there isn’t any water there at all, only heat and plenty of it.

 

What version of truth do you believe?

Today, many people claim to have their own version of truth, because many people say that “truth is relative”. Is it really?

How large is the Earth? Would you accept that its equatorial diameter is 12,756 km as the truth? Considering that we can all look this number up in the library or online, I would think that it would be accepted. All of the planets in the solar system have been mapped and measured and the Sun has too, so any statements made about them will be accepted as truth as long as I don’t change anything.

What about your beliefs? Do you have a faith in something that is accepted as fact and can be proven by other means rather than faith? Many people who are religious in any way, can’t prove their faith or belief scientifically because the major religions of the world were started hundreds or thousands of years ago. All that they have to base their belief on is a written account which was written many years ago. So, how do you know it is the truth? Can you prove it?

Most of the great scientists of the last few centuries like Newton, Bohr, Kepler and others were Christians who were trying to prove things which were found in the Scriptures. In the book, “Temple at the Center of Time”, it is written that Isaac Newton was searching for the knowledge that was given to those who lived before the flood. Original knowledge given by God. Could this be proven? By today’s scientific methods?

If you read this book and look at Newton’s work and the math that he used, then it is possible to prove many of the theories as well as much of the prophecies contained in Scripture. Considering this, the proof is in the Book itself and since it was inspired by God, Who cannot lie, then it must be the truth!

Of course, there are people who don’t believe anything that is in the Scriptures. It is supposedly a book that was dreamed up by the men who wrote it and very little of it is true. The Jewish scholars would have to disagree with you on that point because they were very meticulous about the written history of their people, which is what most, if not all, of the Old Testament is. Also, the prophecies written by those prophets hundreds of years before Jesus was born were fulfilled by Him and many other prophecies concerning the Jewish people have been fulfilled as well. Prophecies that have been fulfilled are not “dreamed up”, they were inspired by God.

He is the only One who could have given them the words of prophecy that would come true because He knew that it would come true. So, the truth about absolute truth is in the proof. Read it, ask questions, study it and find out the real truth, then look at the way the world is going and ask yourself: “Which truth will carry me to Heaven and which one will condemn me to hell?”

Following your own path and your own truth without Jesus will lead you to a place that you do not want to spend eternity. And, if you think that there is no eternity and that we just stop being alive when we die, you are right. Our body does die but our soul lives on in a glorified body, one that cannot die regardless of the final destination.