The Lord is my Helper…

The Lord is my Helper!!!

Hitherto hath the Lord helped us

1 Samuel 7:12

The word “hitherto” seems like a hand pointing in the direction of the past.

Twenty years or seventy, and yet, “hitherto the Lord has helped!”

Through poverty, through wealth, through sickness, through health, at home, abroad, on the land, on the sea, in honour, in dishonour, in perplexity, in joy, in trial, in triumph, in prayer, in temptation, “hitherto has the Lord helped us!”

We delight to look down a long avenue of trees. It is delightful to gaze from end to end of the long vista, a sort of verdant (lush green) temple, with its branching pillars and its arches of leaves; even so look down the long aisles of your years, at the green boughs (branches) of mercy overhead, and the strong pillars of lovingkindness and faithfulness which bear up your joys.

Are there no birds in yonder branches singing? Surely there must be many, and they all sing of mercy received “hitherto.”

But the word also points forward. For when a man gets up to a certain mark and writes “hitherto,” he is not yet at the end, there is still a distance to be traversed.

More trials, more joys; more temptations, more triumphs; more prayers, more answers; more toils, more strength; more fights, more victories; and then come sickness, old age, disease, death.

Is it over now?

NO! There is more yet-awakening in Jesus’ likeness, thrones, harps, songs, psalms, white raiment, the face of Jesus, the society of saints, the glory of God, the fullness of eternity, the infinity of bliss. O be of good courage, believer, and with grateful confidence raise my “Ebenezer.”

(Reference: 1 Samuel 7:12 — “Samuel took a large stone and placed it between the towns of Mizpah and Jeshanah. He named it Ebenezer—’the stone of help’—for he said, ‘Up to this point the Lord has helped us!'” — The Ebenezer Stone (see right) represented a fresh beginning, a reversal of course for God’s people. It also said something important about God: his mercies are everlasting; his covenant is forever.)

He who hath helped thee hitherto Will help thee all thy journey through.

When read in heaven’s light how glorious and marvelous a prospect will thy “hitherto” unfold to thy grateful eye!

by Charles Spurgeon

_________________________________

One must never come to the Lord thinking that this spiritual life, which we are now supposed to live by faith, as born-again covenant children of God, is a quid pro quo relationship; that somehow since we have committed ourselves to God, that He now owes us!

Anyone who would give that impression to a new believer, that by becoming a Christian life is going to be easier, is really doing them a disservice and is setting them up to fail.

The truth is, life in general, as we ALL are living it now in this fallen world, is a challenge for everyone; and even more so after you have become a Christian, because you now have a target on your back, placed there by Satan (the Devil).

You can be sure that Satan is going to do everything that he can to challenge your decision to follow and serve Christ, because your success as a Christian means a definite loss of ground for him in his kingdom.

As it turns out, from God’s point of view anyway as we can learn from reading our Operations Manual (the Bible), this life that we are living, as Christians, is a training ground for eternity; and it is in this life that we are to learn how to apply God’s promises, His spiritual tools, and His power to overcome life’s difficulties.

Check it out and come join the adventure with us!

Listen to what King David had to say about this… 

Your problems come not to defeat you,

but to make you strong!

The only thing we have to do in order to win this race is don’t quit!!!

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MERRY CHRISTMAS…

The Christmas Story…

Remembering the reason for the season!

His birth was prophesied long ago:

Isaiah 9:6

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

And on that first Christmas day God’s gift to the world was born:

Luke 2:8-20

A vision comes to shepherds on the hill-side

8-12 There were some shepherds living in the same part of the country, keeping guard throughout the night over their flocks in the open fields. Suddenly an angel of the Lord stood by their side, the splendour of the Lord blazed around them, and they were terror-stricken. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid! Listen, I bring you glorious news of great joy which is for all the people. This very day, in David’s town, a Saviour has been born for you. He is Christ, the Lord. Let this prove it to you: you will find a baby, wrapped up and lying in a manger.”

13-14 And in a flash there appeared with the angel a vast host of the armies of Heaven, praising God, saying, “Glory to God in the highest Heaven! Peace upon earth among men of goodwill!”

15 When the angels left them and went back into Heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Now let us go straight to Bethlehem and see this thing which the Lord has made known to us.”

16-20 So they came as fast as they could and they found Mary and Joseph—and the baby lying in the manger. And when they had seen this sight, they told everybody what had been said to them about the little child. And those who heard them were amazed at what the shepherds said. But Mary treasured all these things and turned them over in her mind. The shepherds went back to work, glorifying and praising God for everything that they had heard and seen, which had happened just as they had been told.

From my house to yours…


Skip

Protecting our Second Amendment Rights…

Protecting our Second Amendment Rights

Written by Skip Barland

December 17, 2012

A FIREARMS REFRESHER COURSE

“Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not”
~ Thomas Jefferson ~

  1. An armed man is a Citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.
  2. A gun in the hand is better than a cop on the ‘phone.
  3. Glock: The original point and click interface.
  4. Gun Control is not about guns; it’s about control.
  5. If guns are outlawed, can we use swords?
  6. If guns cause crime, then pencils cause misspelled words.
  7. Free Men do not ask permission to bear arms.
  8. If you don’t know your Rights you don’t have any.
  9. Those who trade Liberty for security have neither.
  10. The United States Constitution © 1791. All Rights Reserved.
  11. What part of “shall not be infringed” do you not understand?
  12. The Second Amendment is in place in case they ignore the others.
  13. 64,999,987 firearms owners killed no one yesterday.
  14. Guns only have two enemies: rust and Liberals.
  15. Know guns, know peace and safety. No guns, no peace nor safety.
  16. You don’t shoot to kill; you shoot to stay alive.
  17. 911 – Government sponsored Dial-a-Prayer.
  18. Assault is a type of behavior, not a type of hardware.
  19. Criminals love gun control – it makes their jobs safer.
  20. If guns cause crime, then matches cause arson.
  21. Only a government that is afraid of its citizens tries to control them.
  22. You only have the Rights you are willing to fight for.
  23. Enforce the “gun control laws” we have, don’t make more.
  24. When you remove the people’s right to bear arms, you create slaves.
  25. The American Revolution would never have happened with gun control.

The Second Amendment to the Constitution for the Republic for the united states of America states the following:

“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

The first right of every American citizen should be to protect his family, his person, and his property; and yet as happens always at times like this, which is invariably the case after we have an awful tragedy such as just happened in Newtown, Connecticut this past week, where various liberal voices within this de facto D.C. Corporation and the anti-gun lobbyists are calling again for a ban on hand guns.

This argument makes absolutely no sense because such a ban would not at all take guns out of the hands of criminals, and nor would it make it harder for them to get their weapons; and besides the fact is criminals don’t generally get their weapons through legal means anyway.

The passing of such a law, aside from the fact that it’s illegal because it violates our Second Amendment Rights, it would only serve to take guns out of the hands of law abiding citizens, and along with it our right to defend ourselves.

The statistics that are available prove just the opposite to be true, that the banning of handguns, in places that guns have been banned, have not in any way reduced the crime rate, and most likely it only servers to embolden the criminal element in those areas and makes them feel safer; and nor have these laws been a hindrance in preventing these sorts of mass shootings from happening, at a time when we are seeing these sorts of shootings happening more and more around the world.

This world that we are living in today is becoming a very dangerous place!

Think for a moment, as John Lott points out in the above video, if you were concerned about protecting your family against a rash of mass murders, for instance (such as happened many times in the past, in some of our larger cities) would it make you feel safer to put a sign in front of your house that this home is a “Gun Free Zone?”

I think not, and nor would anyone in their right mind ever even think of doing such a thing!

WorldNetDaily today has an article that was written by a former pastor, who asked the question…

WND EXCLUSIVE

WHAT IF 1 OF THE TEACHERS HAD A GUN?

Sandy Hook massacre begs question of how to protect children at school

by DREW ZAHN 

Does making schools “gun-free zones” really protect children, or make them easy targets?

The recent mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., has left many wondering how best to keep children safe from mad gunmen who ignore the “gun-free zone” laws – and indeed any gun-control laws – to open fire on our nation’s most innocent.

According to news reports of the Connecticut massacre, Adam Lanza, 20, shot his mother Nancy dead at their family home, then drove to the school, where he gunned down six more adults and 20 children, before killing himself.

But what if one of the teachers had a gun, too? Could Lanza have been stopped and many of the children’s lives saved?

The question isn’t new. Back in 1999, the year of the Columbine school shooting, an organization called Jews For The Preservation of Firearms Ownership interviewed Dr. David Th. Schiller, a leading gun-rights advocate in Europe on how to combat the school shootings that even then were deemed “quite common” on U.S. soil.

Schiller cited the example of Israel in the 1970s, which had suffered a string of horrific attacks on schoolchildren by Palestinian terrorists.

“After this a controversial debate erupted in Israel in regards to guns, self-defense, etc.,” Schiller said. “We heard, of course, the same dumb arguments by some good people you always hear on these occasions, like, ‘We do not live in the Wild West here!’ or, “Guns don’t solve problems!” or similar silly things.”

But then, Schiller explained, Israel dumped its strict gun laws dating back to British rule over the area and opened the doors for concealed carry permits.

“Teachers and kindergarten nurses now started to carry guns, schools were protected by parents (and often grandpas) guarding them in voluntary shifts. No school group went on a hike or trip without armed guards,” Schiller explained. “When the message got around to the PLO groups and a couple infiltration attempts failed, the attacks against schools ceased. Too much of a risk here: Terrorists and other evildoers don’t like risks.

“The only thing we can do is protect possible victims,” Schiller concluded. “And laws written in some books will not achieve that. Never have, never will.”

In the U.S., the question of teachers with guns has been debated since Columbine – if not before – and has come up again following the tragedy at Sandy Hook.

According to the Associated Press, Oregon State Rep. Dennis Richardson contends the Connecticut massacre is another “heartbreaking failure” of school personnel to ensure protection and evidence that teachers should be allowed to carry guns in the classroom.

Richardson wrote in an email to three southern Oregon school superintendents that gun bans on school property must be overturned.

“If I had been a teacher or the principal at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, and if the school district did not preclude me from having access to a firearm, either by concealed carry or locked in my desk, most of the murdered children would still be alive, and the gunman would still be dead, and not by suicide,” he wrote.

Richardson added, “We need to ensure that our children are safe, and we can’t do that by disarming those who are on the scene.”

In Medford, Ore., where the school district faced a lawsuit over barring a high school teacher from bringing her gun to school in 2009, Police Chief Tim George argued Richardson is misguided.

“Teachers don’t go into teaching to be police officers, they want to teach kids,” George said. “In crisis situations there are a lot of very complex things happening all at once, and you have to constantly train for deadly force incidents.”

Medford’s schools Superintendant Phil Long agreed, saying he believes it’s best if teachers focus on getting children to safety if a shooting happens.

“I know (Richardson) is well-intentioned when he says this,” Long said. “But we can’t jump to conclusions immediately after a tragedy like this occurs.”

Already armed

In 2008, the tiny school district in Harrold, Texas, made national news when it approved a policy change permitting employees to carry concealed firearms to deter and protect against school shootings.

In order for teachers and staff to carry a pistol, the Associated Press reported at the time, they must have a Texas license to carry a concealed handgun; must be authorized to carry by the district; must receive training in crisis management and hostile situations and have to use ammunition that is designed to minimize the risk of ricochet in school halls.

Superintendent David Thweatt argued there was just too little protection for the children, when his schools lie more than 20 minutes from the nearest sheriff’s office.

“When the federal government started making schools gun-free zones, that’s when all of these shootings started,” Thweatt told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “Why would you put it out there that a group of people can’t defend themselves? That’s like saying ‘sic ’em’ to a dog.”

Texas law typically outlaws firearms on school campuses, “unless pursuant to the written regulations or written authorization of the institution.”

Four years later, following the Connecticut shooting, the Star-Telegraph revisited Thweatt and the Harrold school district’s “guardian plan.”

Thweatt said there has not been an incident on his campus since implementing the policy and he doesn’t expect one.

“Is that 100 percent? No,” Thweatt told the newspaper. “Nothing is 100 percent. But what we do know is that we’ve done all we can to protect our children.”

Thweatt explained his district has also installed special locks and cameras, but that isn’t enough. He doesn’t want a plan where you “lock yourself in your closet and hope that an intruder won’t hurt you. So what we came up with was a policy that would protect.”

He also said his heart was heavy after learning of the shooting in Connecticut: “It’s just tearing me up. … I have children of my own. I can’t stand to think of my little guys just getting slaughtered like that. My heart just bleeds for these people.”

Other efforts to arm teachers

Lawmakers in a number of states in recent years have made arguments similar to Thweatt’s, attempting to clear the way for trained teachers or officials to protect schools with firearms.

The aforementioned Oregon, after a school shooting in 1998 – when student Kip Kinkel killed his parents at home, then drove to Thurston High School in Springfield and opened fire in the cafeteria, killing two and wounding 25 others – has drafted a number of bills to permit concealed carry in schools. The bills, however, have failed to pass.

After a string of school shootings in Wisconsin, Colorado and Pennsylvania in the span of only a few weeks in 2006, Wisconsin State Rep. Frank Lasee pushed for legislation that would allow teachers, principals, administrators and other school personnel to carry concealed weapons.

“To make our schools safe for our students to learn, all options should be on the table,” Lasee told the AP. “Israel [has] well-trained teachers carrying weapons and keeping their children safe from harm. It can work in Wisconsin.”

The director of school safety for Milwaukee Public Schools, Pete Pochowski, opposed Lasee’s proposal at the time.

“Statistically, the safest place for a child to be is in school,” Pochowski said. “We have problems in our schools, but not to the point where we need to arm our teachers and principals.”

Children in Israel are far more vulnerable to daily violence than students in America, he said.

Just last year, Nebraska State Sen. Mark Christensen introduced a bill to allow teachers, administrators and school security guards to carry concealed guns.

Christensen told the Lincoln Journal Star he introduced his bill in response to a 2011 shooting at Millard South High School, where 17-year-old student Robert Butler Jr. shot Assistant Principal Vicki Kaspar and then shot Principal Curtis Case after Kaspar had suspended Butler from the school earlier that morning. Kaspar died of her injury, while Curtis recovered.

“Do we want a situation where somebody can just walk in and start shooting teachers and all kinds of kids?” Christensen asked at the time.

His measure, had it been on the books, might have allowed someone to stop Butler, he argued.

“We might have been better off,” Christensen said. “To me, it’s much better to be able to deal with the situation quickly. We can stop additional lives from being taken.”

Three months after Christensen proposed the legislation, it was tabled indefinitely.

How do we as Christians react to what happened in Danbury, Connecticut???

JESUS IS THE ANSWER!!!

It is a fact of life that BAD THINGS do happen to good people, even to Christians!

So how does a Christian react in the midst of negative circumstances, especially when according to all visible sight/sense evidence that we can see and that can be felt all around us, there is no reason in the natural to hope?

If you are like me, I find that my first reaction when confronted with negative and hurtful circumstances, most times anyway, is just exactly the same as the world’s reaction, of those who still are living outside the Christian faith paradigm.

The truth is this sort of behavior, for me anyway and I dare say for most of you, is quite natural! It’s not something that we had to learn.

None of us had to learn how to react that way, in our flesh, but rather it comes quite naturally for ALL of us and it is common to all mankind to react in this way, and it has been that way from the first day we were born into this world.

It’s becoming increasing obvious, and it was especially and painfully made true from the events of this past Friday, that this world in which we all are living today, is becoming more and more dangerous.

Whereas we’ve seen this sort of thing many times happening in other countries across the world, almost nightly in the evening news, we are now seeing it happen more and more right here at home, in our own neighborhoods and communities.

Where, except from hell, does this sort of behavior come from, as happened this past Friday in Danbury Connecticut, where literally the unthinkable has happened, when someone (who is little more than a child himself, at twenty years of age) went into an elementary school and murdered 20 kindergartners and eight adults?.

Where in the world does this sort of behavior come from and how does something like this happen here in America?

It seems at times like this many people are asking the question how does a loving God allow something like this to happen?

Well that same question was asked of Ann Graham Lotz (Billy Graham’s daughter) after 9/11; and I believe the same answer applies here:

Regarding the Events of 9/11:

On September 13, 2001, in an interview with Anne Graham Lotz, by Jane Clayson on CBS’ Early Show, the following question was asked: “Where Is God?”

Jane Clayson: We’ve turned to your father, the reverend Billy Graham, so often in times of national crisis. What are his thoughts about what happened on Tuesday?

Anne Graham Lotz: I turned to him also. In fact, I called him last night, after you all called to arrange for this interview. He’s reacting like a lot of Christians around the country, we’re all praying.

I think about those people you just showed. I wasn’t sure I’d be in control when you came on because it just provoked such emotion to see these people carrying pictures of their loved ones and knowing they don’t know if they’re alive or dead.

And at a time like that, I know the families and the friends of the victims can hardly even pray for themselves. They don’t know what to say or how to pray. I want to say to them – families and friends of the victims, that there are thousands of people in this country who are carrying you in prayer right now. We’re praying for you with hearts filled with compassion and grief and just interceding on your behalf, asking the God of all peace and the God of all comfort to come down in a special way into your life and meet your needs at this time. My father and mother are also praying like that.

Jane Clayson: The pain is incomprehensible for so many of these people. At a time like this it is so easy to lose faith. How do you keep faith, Mrs. Lotz at a time like this?

Anne Graham Lotz: I think it is almost easier to have faith because we have nothing else in some ways. I’ve watched as this nation has turned to prayer. We’ve seen prayer vigils. And in our city, we have prayer vigils. And so I think it is a time to turn to God…. Our nation has been hit and devastated by this day of terror and now I believe it is our choice as a nation as to whether we’re going to implode and just disintegrate emotionally and spiritually or whether we’ll make the choice to be stronger. I think right now, we have the opportunity to come through this spiritually stronger than we’ve been in the past because we turn to God.

Jane Clayson: I’ve heard people say, those who are religious and those who are not, if God is good, how could He allow this to happen?

What do you say to that?

Anne Graham Lotz:
I say God is also angry when he sees something like this. I would say also for several years now Americans in a sense have shaken their fist at God and said, God, we want you out of our schools, our government, our businesses, we want you out of our marketplace.

And so God, who is a gentleman, has just quietly backed out of our national and political life, our public life, and has slowly been removing his hand of blessing and protection from us.

We need to turn to God first of all and say, God, we’re sorry we have treated you this way and we invite you now to come into our national life. We put our trust in you. We have our trust in God on our coins, we need to practice it.

Jane Clayson: So many people have called this an act of war. Has he (your father) expressed anything about what a proper response for an attack like this should be?

Anne Graham Lotz: No. I’ve tried to be very careful. I don’t ever answer for my father. But I believe in the next few days you’re going to be seeing him and hearing from him and perhaps he will express some of those things.

Jane Clayson: As a spiritual adviser, how would you define the feelings right now?

Anne Graham Lotz: I was watching television the first day and interviewed a construction worker who had been an eyewitness through all of this in a building next to the World Trade Center. He said, I’ve seen planes hit this building, people falling out of the sky. He said, my heart is in my throat. I feel like I would say the same thing. You almost don’t have thoughts to articulate. Your heart is in your throat. You can hardly stand it. You’re numb.

For myself, I fall back on my faith in God and the foundation, speaking of those buildings, as an illustration of America, our foundation is our faith in God and the structure we build on that foundation is what enables us to endure something like this.

…I believe God also knows what it is like to lose a loved one, He gave his only son on a cross. He knows what it is like to see a loved one die a horrific death.

He’s also emotionally involved in our pain; he has the answers for us; and he can bring comfort beyond any human understanding.

Jane Clayson: There’s such a feeling of helplessness among so many. They don’t know what to do beyond giving blood, beyond writing a check to help those in need. What would be your recommendation as a spiritual adviser?

Anne Graham Lotz: I thought Governor Keating said it right when you asked him. He said pray. I believe we need to pray. As Christians, we need to pray for people who can’t pray for themselves right now. I believe we need to call out to God and ask him to forgive our sins and heal our land. God is greater than sometimes we think of him and he can solve this, give us answers, give us wisdom, and lead us through this in a way that makes us stronger as a nation; but we have to turn to him.

Jane Clayson: This event has changed us forever. I know you believe that. Going forward, as a nation, what do you say about that?

Anne Graham Lotz: Well, I pray that God will use this event to change us forever in a positive way. And that will strengthen our faith in him.

I thought of all those people who have died in this tragedy. It doesn’t matter right now what political affiliation they had or what denomination they belong to or what religion or what the color of their skin was or their stock portfolio.

What matters is their relationship with God. I would like to see Americans begin to focus on some of the primary things and some of the things that are more important than just, you know, entertainment and pleasure and making more money.

Personally I think God is giving America an opportunity to repent and turn back to Him.

Let’s be very clear on this one point, that God has nothing whatsoever to do with any of these horrid events, not a one of them; but what has changed is that because of our own disobedience and hard headed rebellion against His ways and His laws, as we read in the Bible, God has been forced, because of our own actions and our own disobedience, to remove His hand of protection and blessing from our nation.

In fact He has done this at our insistence, or at least at the insistence of our elected politicians, under this de facto Corporate system in Washington DC, who have virtually legislated God out of most every area of our society and government… and so my question is, what did we (who are Christians) expect would happen?

All I can say is, if ever there was any evidence that there is truly a resident evil that exists in this world, whom the Bible describes and names as the Devil, and which also the Bible teaches that he is the mortal enemy of all humanity, then certainly last Friday’s senseless massacre should have removed any and all doubts of his existence. .

The fact is this sort of violence is today on the increase, here in our country. The truth is, it has been that way in the world for quite a long time, and it is only recently that this evil is making its presence known here in America.

This has been going on for quite some time, and even today things are getting progressively worse, as America has virtually taken God out of most every area of our society and our government.

We no longer teach our children about Him in our public schools, as our Founding Fathers once mandated.

Oh how far we have strayed from where we once began, where the first official act of Congress was to print Bibles for our public schools, for that very purpose.

Instead, what we are teaching our kids today, in our public schools, is that God is totally and absolutely irrelevant to anything that is of any importance in their life; and it is in that vacuum that Satan has come in and has taken over!

This has happened not only in our schools, but also in our society and in our government in general… and truly what we are seeing today is the result of our nation having turned away from God!.

As even this president has said, when on national television Obama said before the whole world that we are no longer a Christian nation!

I ask you, was he, Obama, speaking for the nation when he said that?

I can tell you this, he certainly wasn’t speaking for me; but I do fear that what he said has been proven to be all too true, as virtually (at least it appears on the surface) that the Christians in our nation have all but abdicated any position of authority or responsibility when it comes to our government’s leadership.

The obvious result of our lack of involvement has been that our country has been in a continual state of decline now for quite a number of years, to where we are seeing more and more evidence of that decline in thing like what took place this last weekend.

As unthinkable and as horrible as this mass murder was, in the lost of 28 innocent lives, 20 of which were young children, let us consider for a moment how God must feel about the over 50 million unborn babies, whose lives have been snuffed out over these last forty or fifty years, where this de facto U.S. Corporation not only endorses the murdering of unborn children, but it is paying for it; and still today it continues, at a rate of over a million babies per year, who are being exterminated through abortion?

Not only that, as if that were not bad enough, this de facto U.S. Corporation is even today exporting this practice to other countries as well.

As a nation, are we not accountable for these actions?

According to God’s Word we are.

Something is horribly and seriously wrong here, folks; but then again none of this has happened overnight.

No, rather we have gotten here through a process that has been developing and getting progressively worse over time.

The question is, what do we do and how do we change this trend?

Well to answer that question, certainly we cannot look to the same unbelieving and pagan world that caused it, and more specifically, here in America, we CANNOT look to this unbelieving de facto D.C. Corporation, in Washington DC, for our answers… when it was actually our blindly following their lead, to begin with, that has gotten us into this mess!

Our country has been a prime example of what happens whenever the spiritually blind are being lead by the blind, where if we aren’t careful and we don’t change our ways and repent, just as the Bible says will happen, we ALL will fall into the ditch!

No, the answer to what ails America today will not be found in anything material, and it most certainly is not going to be found in a changed economy either, as obviously many believe to be the case; but rather the answer to what ails our nation starts with the spiritual; and it is because of that fact that it has to be the Christians in our country who act to correct it, and not the unbelievers.

The first thing that has to happen is that WE, who are Christians, have to pray and ask for God’s forgiveness for making such a mess of things; for being so apathetic; when after having abdicated our responsibilities to maintain a righteous and God fearing Government, in the form of a Constitutional Republic, as it was left us by our Founding Fathers, we have instead, over time (over the last 140 years), we have allowed unbelievers to come in and take over.

Again, my questions to the Christians, who are reading this, is what else did we expect would happen?

It is that very behavior, that we are seeing here, that is evident in our rebellious attitude, which is common to ALL of us as a part of the human race, that is the nature of what the Bible calls sin; and as the Bible teaches, it is that very sin nature, which all of us have, which flows through our blood, and which we all have inherited from our father Adam, that has caused our estrangement and separation from God… and it is for that very reason that Jesus came, because we ALL need a Savior! .

The first step on this road home, towards our reconciliation with God, is REPENTENCE, which starts with each one of us, as Christians, through faith and obedience to God’s Word (the Holy Bible), and through our study and meditation in His Word, we allow the Holy Spirit to rewrite the code of this world’s programming, that has been so ingrained in us from our youth, and we instead repent, which means literally that we change the way we think.

This is what God has promised us in 2 Chronicles 7:14, that if My people, who call themselves by My name (Christian) would humble themselves and pray; turn from their wicked ways and seek my face; then I will hear their prayers and I will heal their land.

Please pray for America; pray for a spiritual awakening among God’s people, in our churches across our land, the likes of which happened at our nations birth; and pray also for a revival to sweep across our land as well, to reach all the unbelievers.

We desperately need to see a move of God in our nation, or we won’t make it… we need a miracle!

Yes we do need a miracle, but I have it on good authority, having read God’s Word and believing His promises, that miracles are God’s specialty; and that as Jesus said “ALL things are possible if we believe,” meaning if we are in faith… which means we are both obeying and believing! Selah

The true meaning behind Jewish holidays (Holy-days)… Purim and Hanukkah (including video by Zola Levitt)

A focus on the true history behind the Jewish Festivals and Holidays…

From a biblical perspective the Jewish holy days were established by God

ALWAYS to call His people back to FAITH in Him!!!

Written by: Skip Barland
December 12, 2012


As a Christian myself, meaning as one who has accepted Yeshua (Jesus) as the prophesied ha’Mashiach (the Messiah) of Israel; and as one who has learned to follow the teachings of both the Tanakh (the Old Testament) and also that of the New Testament as a bases for my faith, I have to say that I relate much more to the Jewish Feast Days and Holidays that I find in the Tanakh (all of which were also honored and kept by Jesus and His disciples); and really what I have found is that the reason for these Holy-days was always to remind God’s people of their history and the importance of them maintaining and returning to FAITH in God.

The keeping of these holy-days are also the means by which this history and these truths were to be passed on to future generations.

However, just as it has happened overtime with the traditional Christian holidays, such as Christmas and Easter (and increasingly more so today than in the past), where the world and religious pagan traditions have taken over and have (in many cases) totally replaced the true biblical meanings of these holy-days, I find the same has happened over time with many of the Jewish holidays as well, where the true meaning and history behind these holy-days have been lost and in some instances have been totally replaced by some fictional story, exactly as has happened overtime with the Christian holy-days, with the creation of the stories about Santa Clause and the Easter Bunny.

Even though that is the way things have evolved today in the secular community and even in some religious communities, I for one do not choose to buck the tide; but rather I see this as an opportunity to bring the focus back to the original intent and meaning of these very sacred and important Holy-days, as they are mentioned and taught in both the Tanakh and the New Testament.

As a Christian I have to say also that I so appreciate and enjoy studying this history and these truths from the Bible, regarding the true meaning behind these Jewish holy-days and also the Christian holy-days, because I find at the center of each there is a total focus on the same God, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and on the promised coming Messiah!

Truly in order to appreciate these truths in Scripture, regarding this sacred history and regarding  prophecies of the coming Messiah, you have to look at the Bible with a teachable mind and heart; and approach it with a focus on learning, allowing the Scriptures to teach you; and so many times that requires our having to strip away any preconceived religious notions and ideas that may not be accurate, or proven to be true in history or in Scripture.

Jesus put it this way, when speaking to the religious leaders of His day, and certainly this is even more true in our day::

Mark 7:1-8

Jesus Challenges the Pharisees’ Traditions

The Pharisees and some experts in Moses’ Teachings who had come from Jerusalem gathered around Jesus. They saw that some of his disciples were unclean[a] because they ate without washing their hands.

(The Pharisees, like all other Jewish people, don’t eat unless they have properly washed their hands. They follow the traditions of their ancestors. When they come from the marketplace, they don’t eat unless they have washed first. They have been taught to follow many other rules. For example, they must also wash their cups, jars, brass pots, and dinner tables.[b])

The Pharisees and the experts in Moses’ Teachings asked Jesus, “Why don’t your disciples follow the traditions taught by our ancestors? They are unclean because they don’t wash their hands before they eat!

Jesus told them:

Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites in Scripture:

‘These people honor me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me.
Their worship of me is pointless,
because their teachings are rules made by humans.’

“You abandon the commandments of God to follow human traditions.

There is so much in the Tanakh that proves beyond any shadow of doubt that these Holy Scriptures are truly the inspired Holy and inerrant Word of God.

The Bible in fact records not only an accurate account of history, but also and more specifically its accuracy has also been proven to be true in other areas as well,  especially in the area of prophecy.

Truly you will find, if you read it, that it is the ONLY book ever written that accurately gives the future as history; and as you read it and study it with a mind to learn from it, and apply its truths and the wisdom that’s taught in it to your life, then it changes your life!

Here’s one prophecy in particular that I would like to direct your attention to regarding the coming Messiah, that is given in Daniel chapter 9, that shows beyond any doubt that there can be ONLY one Man who stands on the stage of history who meets ALL of the prophesied requirements of Messiah, and that Man is Jesus Christ!

“Surely the Sovereign Lord does nothing
without revealing his plan
to his servants the prophets.”

Amos 3:7

Check it out:


Daniel’s Seventy Weeks prophecy: A detailed look at Daniel 9:24-27

Below is a detailed look at Daniel 9:24-27. Much of our commentary below is based on Josh McDowell’s book, “The New Evidence that Demands a Verdict”, pages 197-201:

PART ONE:

A chronological summary of Daniel 9:24-26

1. There would be a decree to rebuild Jerusalem.

2. Jerusalem and the Temple would be rebuilt.

3. Then an anointed one (messiah) would be “cut off” (an idiom for “rejected” or “killed”).

4. Then Jerusalem and the Temple would be destroyed again.

I came up with this summary after reading various renderings of this verse in various translations of the Christian Bible and of the Jewish Tanakh. (The Tanakh is the Jewish Bible; it contains the writings of what we Christians refer to as the Old Testament). I believe that this chronology fits most of the renderings that I have seen, whether they are translations by Christians or by Judaists. My summary is in no way original – many Christians, such as Josh McDowell, have come up with the same chronology long before I did.

PART TWO:

A summary of how Daniel 9:24-26 was fulfilled

All of these events later happened, in the same order in which they are described in Daniel 9:24-26:

1. After the Medo-Persians had conquered the Babylonian empire about 2540 years ago, they ruled a vast empire that included the land of Israel. About 2446 years ago (about 445 BC), Persian king Artaxerxes gave permission to the Jews to rebuild Jerusalem, which was still in ruins after having been destroyed earlier by the Babylonians.

2. The Jews rebuilt the Temple and the city of Jerusalem.

3. Then, in about 33 AD, Jesus entered Jerusalem as the Messiah who had been promised by Old Testament prophets. But, many people rejected Jesus as the Messiah and He was crucified by the Romans.

4. About 40 years after Jesus was crucified, the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple. (The Temple has not been rebuilt since then).

PART THREE:

How Daniel 9:24-26 was “Fulfilled to the day” according to scholars such as Josh McDowell

First, McDowell, and other scholars, separate the prophecy into three parts:

1. The “7 sevens” in Daniel 9:25.

2. The “62 sevens” in Daniel 9:25.

3. And the 70th “seven” in Daniel 9:27.

Then, they combine the first two periods for a total of 69 “sevens.” They combined the first two periods because it is at after the completion of those two periods that the anointed one appears, and that’s what we are trying to calculate – when the anointed one was supposed to appear.

Next, they interpret the “sevens” as “seven years” or periods of seven years, rather than a period of seven days or seven weeks or seven months. Part of the reason that this is interpreted as “years” is because of the reference to “years” in Daniel 9:2. (Daniel 9:2 refers to the “seventy years” prophecy that Jeremiah spoke of in Jeremiah 25).

PART FOUR:

The mathematics of calculating Daniel 9:24-26 and the issue of the 360-day “prophetic” calendar

At this point, we’re adding the 7 “sevens” and the 62 “sevens” for a total of 69 “sevens”. And we are interpreting the 69 “sevens” to mean 69 periods of seven years, for a total of 483 years. So, we are saying that there would be a period of 483 years from the time that a decree is given to rebuild Jerusalem to the time that a Messiah is to appear.

Some Christian scholars say that the period of 483 years should not be thought of in terms of our modern solar calendar which is based on a 365.25 days to a year. Instead, we are to use a “prophetic” calendar which has 360 days to a year. Many ancient calendars, including the Jewish calendar, were based on a lunar year of 12 months, with each month lasting 30 days each. Many ancient peoples, including the ancient Jews, did realize that there actually were more than 360 days to a year and so they would tack on an extra five days at some point during the year.

Another reason some scholars say that we should apply a 360-day calendar to Daniel’s prophecy is because of various Bible references that allude to a fixed 30-day month view of time. For example, in Genesis 7:24, it says that the flood lasted 150 days. And, in Genesis 7:11, it says the flood began in the 17th day of the second month. And in Genesis 8:4, it says that the flood subsided on the 17th day of the seventh month, when the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat. So, these passages present us a 5-month period of time that is described as being 150 days in length. And that of course is five 30-day months.

There are other Bible passages that indicate that time is being measured in fixed 30-day month periods. Revelation 12:6 mentions a 1,260 day period which, in my view, clearly relates to the three-and-a-half-year period mentioned in Revelation 12:13-14 and in Daniel 9:27. For three-and-a-half years to equal 1,260 days, one would have to measure years in 360-day increments. That of course doesn’t mean that the earth’s orbit of the sun is going to speed up or change, it just simply means that the prophetic year is a measure of time in which a “year” has 360 days, nothing more, nothing less. It’s no different than weighing a bag of groceries using the metric system of kilograms and then using the old English system of pounds and ounces. It is not that one system causes the groceries to weigh more or less, but rather the two systems describe the weight in different units. So too does the prophetic year in comparison to our solar calendar – it uses a different system to measure time.

So, we take the 483 years that we had calculated earlier and we multiply the 483 by 360. In other words, we are viewing the 483 year period described in Daniel 9:25 as “prophetic years” of 360 days each. And, 483 times 360 equals 173,880. And that gives us a total of 173,880 days.

Now, we want to apply these 173,880 days to our calendar, which has 365.25 days to a year. Why? So that we can use our calendar in trying to figure out the year that this part of Daniel’s prophecy was to begin its fulfillment and when this part of Daniel’s prophecy was to be completed. So, we divide the 173,880 days into years of 365.25 days. And, that equals 476 (solar) years. Now, we need to figure out when this 476 year period was supposed to begin.

PART FIVE:

When was Daniel’s “69 weeks of years” supposed to begin?

At this point we are trying to figure out when the 476-year period begins. The prophecy in Daniel 9:24-26 begins with a decree to rebuild Jerusalem. Many people have proposed different years for different decrees. And I won’t pretend to have the “only correct answer,” because I don’t know if I have that or not. In any event, here are four decrees that are often discussed in relation to Daniel 9:24-26:

1. The decree from Cyrus in 539 BC. (see Ezra 1:1-4)

2. The decree from Darius in 519 BC. (see Ezra 5:3-7)

3. The decree from Artaxerxes to Ezra in 457 BC. (see Ezra 7:11-16)

4. The decree from Artaxerxes to Nehemiah in 444 BC. (see Nehemiah 2:1-8)

As cited in McDowell’s book, a Christian scholar named J.D. Wilson contends that only the decree from Artaxerxes to Nehemiah applies to this prophecy. As cited in McDowell’s book, Wilson explains:

The words of the decree are not given, but its subject matter can easily be determined. Nehemiah hears of the desolate condition of Jerusalem. He is deeply grieved. The King asks the reason. Nehemiah replies, ‘the city, the place of my fathers’ sepulchres, lieth waste, and the gates thereof are consumed with fire.’ The King bids him make request. He does so promptly, asking for an order from the King that ‘I be sent to the city that I may build it.’ And, as we read, he was sent, and he rebuilt Jerusalem.

And so, that is J.D. Wilson’s reason for using the Artaxerxes to Nehemiah. The next issue is finding a date for that decree. McDowell, page 199 of his “The New Evidence that Demands a Verdict,” reads:

The decree was given in 444 B.C., based on the following:

1. ‘In the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes’ (Nehemiah 2:1).

2. Artaxerxes’ accession was in 465 B.C.

3. There is no day-of-month specified, so according to the Jewish custom the date is understood as the first day of the month, which would be Nisan 1, 444 BC.

4. March 5, 444 B.C. is our corresponding calendar date.

Many scholars use the March 5 date, but not all use the 444 BC year. Some use 445 BC as the twentieth year of Artaxerxes. I myself haven’t done enough research to decide which year is most likely to be the correct year. Regardless of whether you accept the date as being March 5, 444 BC or March 5, 445 BC, we now have a starting point for Daniel’s prophecy.

PART SIX:

When was Daniel’s “69 weeks of years” supposed to end?

We are now at the point where we can try to pinpoint when the Messiah was supposed to make his appearance. If we agree on the points that have been made earlier, then we simply calculate 476 years into the future, using 444 BC as the starting point. To do that, if I am not mistaken, we count 443 BC as the first of the 476 years. Why – because the first began in 444 BC and it ended in 443 BC. So we start counting from 443 BC. So, we have 443 years on the BC side of measuring time and that leaves us with 33 years on the AD side to account for the full 476 years. Using this formula, we arrive at 33 AD the year in time in which the Messiah was to appear.

And that would correspond to the time that Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey. The reason the donkey is important is that in Zechariah 9:9, the prophet Zechariah speaks of a King riding a donkey and presenting himself as the King to Jerusalem.

Alfred Edersheim, a Christian Jew who lived during the 1800s, studied ancient Rabbinical writings, and said that Zechariah 9:9 was often interpreted as being about a Messiah. In the book, “The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah,” Edersheim wrote: “The Messianic application of this verse in all its parts has already been repeatedly indicated. We may here add that there are many traditions about this donkey on which the Messiah is to ride; and so firm was the belief in it, that, according to the Talmud, `if anyone saw a donkey in his dreams, he will see salvation’ (Ber 56 b).”

So then, what better way for a Messiah to announce himself in Jerusalem than to enter the great city on the back of a humble donkey?

There are theories that pinpoint the exact date of the exact year that Jesus rode into Jerusalem. The dates that I have seen in my review of other people’s research is April 6, either April 6, 32 AD, or April 6, 33 AD. (And, again, the difference in the year depends on whether the 20th year of Artaxerxes was in 444 BC or 445 BC). And, some scholars have claimed that there are exactly 173,880 days from March 5, 444 BC to April 6, 33 AD (and, 173,880 days from March 5, 445 BC to April 6, 32 AD).

PART SEVEN:

What ancient Rabbis thought of Daniel 9:24-26

I found a Web site that pulls together various ancient writings from Rabbis, commenting on Daniel, chapter 9. That Web site’s address is: http://www.inerrancy.org/dan.htm

According to that Web site, at least a handful of ancient Rabbis agree that it is correct to view Daniel 9 as providing a timeline for the arrival of a Messiah. Below are a few examples that I copied verbatim from that Web site:

1a. Maimonides (Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon): “Daniel has elucidated to us the knowledge of the end times. However, since they are secret, the wise [rabbis] have barred the calculation of the days of Messiahs coming so that the untutored populace will not be led astray when they see that the End Times have already come but there is no sign of the Messiah” (Igeret Teiman, Chapter 3 p.24.)

1b. Rabbi Moses Abraham Levi: “I have examined and searched all the Holy Scriptures and have not found the time for the coming of Messiah clearly fixed, except in the words of Gabriel to the prophet Daniel, which are written in the 9th chapter of the prophecy of Daniel (The Messiah of the Targums, Talmuds and Rabbinical Writers, 1971) p.141-142 (These two quotes were taken from The Creator Beyond Time and Space by Mark Eastman, M.D. and Chuck Missler (The Word for Today, 1996)).

Assuming that these citations are accurate renderings of what the Rabbis had said, it seems clear that these Rabbis believed that Daniel 9:24-26 referred to a Messiah, a very important Messiah, and that the Bible passage provided the information needed to calculate the Messiah’s arrival. As for the first example, Maimonides of course was a Judaist, not a Christian, and so from his point of view, the prophecy had not yet been fulfilled. And that would account for his comments about calculating the Messiah’s arrival.

PART EIGHT:

My conclusions about Daniel’s “69 weeks of years”

Perhaps we can’t all agree, at this time, on every specific detail involved in calculating a starting point for Daniel’s prophecy about the 69 weeks of years. But, eventually, we might have additional information from archaeologists and historians to help pinpoint that starting point. But at this present time, it seems to me that there is widespread agreement among Christian scholars on the following issues:

1. That there is evidence in the Bible to support the concept of the “prophetic calendar” which measures time in terms of 360-day years.

2. That there is evidence in the Bible to support the view that the decree of Artaxerxes to Nehemiah is, or at least could be, the starting point of Daniel’s prophecy.

3. That there is strong evidence from historians and archaeologists to pinpoint “twentieth year of Artaxerxes” as being either 444 BC or 445 BC.

4. That the events described in Daniel’s prophecy do line up as follows:

• That there would be a decree to rebuild Jerusalem.

• Then Jerusalem and the Temple would be rebuilt.

• Then an anointed one (messiah) would make his appearance and then be “cut off.”

• Then Jerusalem and the Temple would be destroyed again.

http://www.aboutbibleprophecy.com/weeks.htm

Tis the season to be thankful and to remember… MERRY CHRISTMAS to all!

This is the star that shone on the stable that sheltered the manger that held the miracle that changed the world!

May the miracle of Christmas shine brightly on you.

Unto US a Child is born…

And His Name shall be called Emmanuel (meaning: God with us)

Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin

shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel”

Isaiah 7:14

This is the Gift of Christmas:

Isaiah 9:6-7

For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of His government and peace
There will be no end,
Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom,
To order it and establish it with judgment and justice
From that time forward, even forever.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.

The Miracle of Christmas is that God did for us, through His only begotten (unique) Son), Jesus Christ, what we could not do for ourselves!

Mankind was lost; we had no hope and could not bridge the gap and estrangement between us and our Creator that was left by Adam and Eve’s transgression; and so God became a man in the person of Jesus Christ, in order to communicate the Father’s love to us; and in so doing Jesus Christ (our Messiah) offered Himself as our substitute and thereby paid our debt and our penalty, for our transgression.

This is the time of the year where we recognize this most precious and wonderful Gift that was given for us, by celebrating His birth.

It’s not about materialism, sales, and the economy; it’s not even just about our having warm fuzzy feelings about family and about each other, and nor is it just about our giving gifts to each other.

All of that is fine, but we shouldn’t forget the real reason for the season; and yes even though we can know from history and from scripture that Jesus’ birth was not in the middle of Winter, on December 25th, but rather it was in the fall of the year that Jesus was born, during the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles.

When was Jesus really born?

Well thanks to the writings of a Jewish historian, by the name of Josephus, and also to Holy Scripture, it is possible for us to determine the time of the year when Jesus was born.

It is because of these two accounts that we can plot the time from when John the Baptist’s father (Zacharias) was offering his service in the Holy Temple to the birth of our Saviour.

King David (in 1 Chronicles 24:1-4) divided the sons of Aaron into 24 courses or groups to create a schedule by which the Holy Temple could be staffed.

Once these courses were established lots where drawn to determine the sequence whereby each group would serve in the Temple. (1 Chronicles 24: 7-19)

Luke 1:5-9

The Birth of John the Baptist Foretold

In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly order of Abijah. His wife was a descendant of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. Both of them were righteous before God, living blamelessly according to all the commandments and regulations of the Lord.But they had no children, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were getting on in years.

Once when he was serving as priest before God and his section was on duty, he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to enter the sanctuary of the Lord and offer incense.

Since Abijah was the eighth course, that would have placed Zacharias’ service in the temple sometime around June.

We are told in Luke 1: 23-24 that when Zacharias’ service in the Temple was ended, that he went to his home; and it was then that his wife Elizabeth conceived.

Luke 1:24-27

24 After those days his wife Elizabeth conceived, and for five months she remained in seclusion. She said,25 “This is what the Lord has done for me when he looked favorably on me and took away the disgrace I have endured among my people.”

The Birth of Jesus Foretold

26 In the sixth month (of Elizabeth’s pregnancy)  the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, 27 to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary.

In verse 26 we also learn that Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit during the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy (June + 6 months = December), and so that would mean that Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit sometime around December.

Luke 1:28-38

28 And the Angel Gabriel came to Mary and said, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” 29 But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.

30 The angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus.

 32 He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David.

33 He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

34 Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?”

35 The angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God.

36 And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.”

38 Then Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.

So now you add 9 months to December and that means Jesus had to be born sometime in September, during the Feast of Tabernacles (when God came to tabernacle with man), which  makes sense because the time to collect taxes would be at the end of the harvest, not in the dead of Winter.

Nevertheless, since December 25th is the day that has traditionally been set aside to recognizes and to celebrate our Saviour’s birth, and whereas I think it is right to teach the truth regarding this history, I see no reason why we can’t celebrate this joyous occasion  on any day, including December 25th.

With that said, the reason why Jesus came is the TRUE meaning of Christmas; and all the rest of the tradition and culture is fine because it does serve to bring us all closer together; but still let us who are Christians not allow the world to take Jesus out of Christmas, as they are trying to do; but rather let us remember always to keep the main event front and center, which is Jesus Christ; that we each had a debt we could not pay, which Jesus paid for us; and it was His entry into the world that shows us what God’s grand design is for us all, who are called by His name, in what God expects of us, who follow as Jesus’ disciples!

Jesus is the reason for the Season and He is also our example to follow; and so like Him so must we also be about our Father’s business.

So with that being my soapbox speech for the season, I want to wish ALL of you a very…

merryxmas_text1_455

 with love from your servant,

Skip

The POWER of our words and how to activate God’s supernatural power in the here and now… it requires our learning a different paradigm


Jesus SPOKE to the fig tree and the Bible says…

“His disciples heard Him!”

Mark 11:12-14

The Fig Tree Withered

12 Now the next day, when they had come out from Bethany, Jesus was hungry. 13 And seeing from afar a fig tree having leaves, He went to see if perhaps He would find something on it. When He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs.

14 In response Jesus said to it, “Let no one eat fruit from you ever again“… And His disciples heard it.

Often today we hear people, even Christians, ridiculing, in a very derogatory and belittling manner, the “Word of Faith” movement by calling them that “Name it and claim it,” or that “blab it and grab it” group!

I don’t know about you, but I made a commitment to my Lord, not knowing anything about the Bible whatsoever when I first started this spiritual pilgrimage and search for Truth, that if I could find precedent in Bible for what I was being taught, then I would believe it and accept it as Truth; and that is the way I have lived and have walked ever since.

The fact that we have all seen charlatans and false teachers misuse the Word of God for their own profit, doesn’t mean that we have to throw the baby out with the bath water, so to speak.

The fact is there are counterfeits and phonies in ever area of life, but we should also remember that in order for there to be a counterfeit of anything, there first has to be the genuine article; and from God’s perspective it’s only those who walk as Jesus walked, with an emphasis on being obedient to God’s Word and the Holy Spirit, where He said “I only do the things I see the Father do; and I only speak the words I hear Him speak, it is only these who are obedient and teachable, who are the true disciples of Christ.

The Bible even says that we, as Jesus’ disciples are to put on the Mind of Christ; and as Jesus was always about His Father’s business… so must we be about our Father’s business as well!

It’s why we ALL are here and it is our destiny, to first be teachable, and then to be obedient to follow God’s Word, and be led by the Holy Spirit; and thereby fulfill our purpose and our calling in life.

We must also remember, as the Bible says, we were each created for God’s pleasure and not our own.

It’s obvious that before we are born-again, for ALL of us, from the time we are born into the world, our attitude is that the world and life is all about us; as we think of ourselves as the center of the universe, the end all and be all of life.

That behavior is not something we had to learn, of being selfish and self-centered; it comes natural to all of us, from the day we are first born into this world, until we are born-again, and start operating from God’s paradigm and cease to operate from our own.

Well it is that very attitude, which by the way we all have had at one time or another, and still we each have to struggle to keep it in check every day, that is the nature of what sin is.

It’s in our DNA, and it is common to all man, as we each have inherited that nature from our father Adam, when we presume to go against God’s original plan and purpose, and the design which He has for our life, and instead we choose to follow our own path…. Just as the Bible says, “All of us like sheep have gone astray, each following our own way, and the Lord has laid upon Him, Jesus, the inequity of us ALL!” (see Isaiah 53: 6)

That is the reason we ALL need a Saviour, because we ALL have without question violated God’s law, and are hopelessly beyond redemption through any efforts of our own, without benefit of a Saviour!

We have to be Born-again!

The Bible very clearly tells us that Jesus operated during His entire earthly ministry in perfect sync and harmony with His Father in Heaven, and with the Holy Spirit.

In fact, Jesus operated in the earthly realm, not as God, even though He is God, but He operated as a normal human, as we all are, in order to show us the potential that we each have available to us, if we would but change our paradigm and our bad habits, and become teachable.

Along the way, I also have discovered that the more I learn and the more that I think I know, the more there is that I truly don’t know; and so it goes; but then I guess any god that I could know of that thoroughly and completely in my little peanut brain would not really be the same God that created the universe, and all that is in it.

With that said, there are many today in the education field and in science, who I think have been educated beyond their intelligence, to even think that all of this wonderful and beautiful creation, that we see around us, could have come about without a God; and that it happened through some natural process called “Natural Selection.”

How can the finite know the Infinite; how can the created truly know their Creator?

To resolve that quandary is exactly the reason why God became a man, and was born in a manger a little over two thousand years ago.

For me I have discovered beyond any doubt that all that the Bible says is both true and accurate; and by that I mean the Book is completely 100% inherent (in its original tongues), and that it is both reliable and accurate as it describes the events that it records.

Most people or nations when they record their history, they leave out the bad parts, but the Hebrew scribes that recorded this history, that we read today in the Bible, understood well that what they were writing was being inspired through inspiration of the Holy Spirit; and so they recorded the truth as it happen in every detail… including the good, the bad, and the ugly.

2 Timothy 3:16-17

16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.

2 Peter 1:21

21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

For me, Jesus Christ (the Messiah of Israel) is my Lord, my Savour, and my Master; and the Holy Spirit and God’s Word is my guide.

With that said, there are some very interesting topics that we can learn from the Bible about who we are, how we are made, and about this world that we live in.

It’s also within its pages, that we are taught how to operate in the Spirit, just as Jesus did.

In the above account some very important lessons are being taught about how faith works.

First of all, it’s about believing and having faith in your HEART and NOT in your mind or intellect that these things, these supernatural acts which we read about in the Bible were done.

There is a difference and we must understand what that difference is.

When the Bible talks about the heart of a Christian, it is talking about the centermost part of our three part being… Body, Soul, and Spirit.

It is not talking about the pumping organ of the body either; rather in the Hebrew the word that was translated “heart,” could better be translated as our “gut.”

You might be interested to know that medical science has even discovered a link that exists between the brain and our intestines or our gut., that is called the vagus nerve.

The Brain-Gut Connection

Why do we get butterflies in our stomach before a performance?

Why does indigestion produce nightmares?

Why are antidepressants now also being used for gastrointestinal ailments?

It turns out that both our gut and our brain originate early in embryogenesis from the same clump of tissue which divides during fetal development. While one section turns into the central nervous system, another piece migrates to become the enteric nervous system. Later the two nervous systems connect via a cable called the vagus nerve — the longest of all the cranial nerves whose name is derived from Latin, meaning “wandering.”  The vagus nerve meanders from the brain stem through the neck and finally ends up in the abdomen. There’s the brain-gut connection.

Have you ever wondered why an impending job interview can cause an attack of intestinal cramps? And why do anti-depressants targeted for the brain cause nausea or abdominal upset in millions of people who take such drugs? The reason for these common experiences is because each of us literally has two brains –the familiar one encased in our skulls and a lesser-known but vitally important one found in the human gut. Like Siamese twins, the two brains are interconnected; when one gets upset, the other does, too. No wonder people trust their gut. One half of all our nerve cells are located within the gut.

The state of the gut has a profound influence upon our health. It is from the healthy gut that we enjoy neurological and psychological as well as immunological health. This is not to discount the human brain. This is simply to say that the body has two brains — the second brain being our gut. There is an excellent article on this brain-gut connection called Complex and Hidden Brain in Gut Makes Bellyaches and Butterflies written by Sandra Blakeslee, originally published in the January 23, 1996 issue of The New York Times.

How it all Works

The gut’s brain, known as the enteric nervous system (ENS), is located in sheaths of tissue lining the esophagus, stomach, small intestine and colon. Considered a single entity, it is packed with neurons, neurotransmitters and proteins that zap messages between neurons or support cells like those found in the brain. It contains a complex circuitry that enables it to act independently, learn, remember and, as the saying goes, produce gut feelings.

In his book The Second Brain, HarperCollins 1998, Dr. Michael Gershon, a professor of anatomy and cell biology at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City, dubs the entire gastrointestinal system the body’s second nervous system. “The brain is not the only place in the body that’s full of neurotransmitters,” says Dr. Gershon. “A hundred million neurotransmitters line the length of the gut, approximately the same number that is found in the brain…” If we add the nerve cells of the esophagus, stomach and large intestine, there are more nerve cells in the gut than there are in the entire remainder of the peripheral nervous system. Nearly every chemical that controls the brain in the head has been identified in the gut, including hormones and neurotransmitters.

This complex circuitry provides the brain in the gut with the means to act independently. Proof of this can be seen in stroke victims whose brain stem cells, which control swallowing, have been destroyed. If this occurs, a surgeon has to create an opening in the abdominal wall, so that feeding can be accomplished by manually inserting foods directly into the stomach. Once the food is in the stomach, digestion and absorption can take place, even in individuals who are brain dead. The central nervous system is needed for swallowing and for defecation, but from the time the food is swallowed to the moment its remains are expelled from the anus, the gut is in charge.

It never ceases to amaze me how many relatively new discoveries science has made over the years, and continues to make today, that only just confirms what the Bible has been saying all along.

I’ve always maintained that the Bible is our Operations Manual for life, and though it contains 66 books, and was pinned by forty different authors over a period of more than 1,500 years, the continuity and single thread of truth that permeates its every page (which you have to read to know for yourself), shows us beyond any doubt that this Book is of extraterrestrial origin, from beyond our space and time continuum; and that is exactly what Jesus said it was!.

The Bible has also been proven over time to be extremely accurate when it comes to things like Prophecy, History, Science, and Archeology, to the point it has never been shown to be incorrect.

In fact there have been some very intelligent men in history who have started out to prove the Bible wrong, who after having read it and studied it were later found on their knees worshiping the God of the Bible.

The World has many opinions about this Man, who stands on the stage of history, where even our calendar is divided into two parts, and is separated by His birth.

There’s the part that preceded His birth, which we call B.C. and the part that followed it, which we called A.D..

One writer described Jesus Christ’s influence in this way:

Nineteen wide centuries have come and gone and today He is the center-piece of the human race and the leader of the column of progress. I am far within the mark when I say that all the armies that ever marched and all the navies that ever were built, and all of the parliaments that ever have sat, and all the kings that ever reigned put together have not affected the life of man upon this earth as powerfully as has that one solitary life, Jesus of Nazareth.

What about this Man, Jesus Christ (which in Hebrew is: Yeshua Ha’Mashiach—Saviour, the Messiah) and what about this Book called the Bible?

Jesus – Man, Myth or God?

Perhaps you have wondered, Is Christianity really established upon historical facts? Dr. Clifford Herbert Moore, former professor at Harvard University writes:

Christianity knew its Savior and Redeemer, not as some god whose history was contained in a mythical faith, with rude, primitive and even offensive elements. The Christian’s faith is founded on positive, historical and acceptable facts.

A long list could be made of such outstanding scholars who devoutly followed Christ. Dr. William Lyon Phelps, a professor at Yale University for forty years and one of the most distinguished educators in the history of our country, expressed his confidence in the historical evidence concerning the death of the Lord Jesus Christ and frequently shared his personal faith in Christ as Savior and Lord.

It is true that there are men – among them some of the world’s most honored scholars – who do not believe that Jesus is the Son of God, our Savior. But I am appalled when I talk to many of these men about Christ, for I discover that almost always they are ignorant of the basic truths of the gospel. If you would read any of the writings of Robert Ingersoll, Thomas Paine, or other well-known skeptics, you would be amazed to discover that these men are taking issue with something they do not fully understand. They have erected straw men, labeled them Christians, and then have proceeded to destroy their own creations.

Any reputable argument for the validity of Christianity stands or falls on the proof of the resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. It is for this reason that His resurrection has been ridiculed and contested through the centuries by all kinds of skeptics. It is for the same reason that men of faith from all walks of life and disciplines of learning have dedicated their entire lives to proving that Jesus truly was raised from the dead.

Learn about the several irrefutable evidences that have brought me to the firm conviction that Jesus was raised from the dead, thereby proving Himself to be the Son of God.

Examining the Evidence

Many cynics and skeptics deny the claims of Christ. I have met people who are militantly antagonistic toward Him, though I must say that they are in the great minority. Some of them say that He is just a myth or that He is a great man and nothing more. They ridicule the Bible and make fun of those who worship Jesus Christ as the Son of God.

One of the best known skeptics of this century was C.S. Lewis, professor at Oxford University. For years, he was an agnostic who denied the deity of Christ. After a long process of searching for answers, he received Christ as his Savior and Lord. Later he wrote many outstanding books advocating belief in Christ as Savior.

In Mere Christianity, Lewis states:

A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things that Jesus said wouldn’t be a great moral teaher.  He would either be a lunatic on the level of a man who says he’s a poached egg – or else he would be the devil of hell; you must take your choice.

Accepting the Truth

I have yet to meet a man who has honestly considered the overwhelming evidence concerning Jesus of Nazareth, who does not admit that He is the Son of God. While some do not believe, they are honest in confessing, “I have not taken the time to read the Bible or consider the historical facts concerning Jesus.” Their attitude is founded upon an unfortunate childhood experience, the inconsistency of some Christian, or perhaps the influence of a college professor; but they admit that they have not honestly and sincerely considered the person of Jesus Christ and His claims on their lives.

Consider these passages concerning Jesus of Nazareth, taken from the Word of God: Colossians 1:15-20, Hebrews 1:1-2, and Ephesians 1:9-10.

In my quest for truth concerning the resurrection of Jesus, I discovered that many great scholars have believed, and do believe, in His resurrection. After examining the evidence for the resurrection given by the gospel writers, the late Simon Greenleaf, an authority in jurisprudence at Harvard Law School, concluded, “It was therefore impossible that they [the early Christians] could have persisted in affirming the truths they have narrated, had not Jesus actually risen from the dead, and had they not known this fact as certainly as they knew any other fact.”

Dr. William Lyon Phelps wrote, “It may be said that the historical evidence for the resurrection is stronger than for any other miracle anywhere narrated.”

John Singleton Copley, recognized as one of the greatest legal minds in Bristish history, comments, “I know pretty well what evidence is, and I tell you, such evidence as that for the resurrection has never broken down yet.”

These evidences satisfied my questions on the validity of the resurrection, and as a result, I invited the living Christ to come into my life almost fifty years ago.

Some years after I made my commitment to Christ as Savior and Lord, I sat in an empty tomb in Jerusalem – the tomb in which many believe the body of Jesus of Nazareth was laid the day of His crucifixion. It has been empty for almost 2,000 years.

I had gone to this garden tomb with great excitement. Somehow I felt that there I would meet with my Lord in a unique and special way. I anticipated that He would manifest Himself to me as in no other place, at no other time. Silently, I waited alone. Nothing happened. I was disappointed.

Then I remembered the words of those angelic beings who spoke to the women on that first Easter morning, “Why do you seek the living One among the dead? He is not here, but He has risen” (Luke 24:5,6 NASB). Then I understood, as I never quite understood before, that Jesus of Nazareth, the risen Christ, was present in that tomb just as He was and is present in any other part of the world where men place their faith and trust in Him. Yes, He was with me in that tomb because He lives within me. But He is also with me on every continent and in every country where I travel and speak.

Jesus Christ promises to all who place their trust in Him to be with them always, never to leave them or forsake them. Of all the great, life-changing truths contained in the Bible, the most meaningful to me is that my body is a temple of God and the living, loving Lord, Jesus Christ, actually dwells within me.

Not only is Jesus the Son of God, He also can do things for us that no one else can do. I want to concentrate on four of these.

First, He is the only One who can pardon man from his sin.
Second, He alone can give purpose for life.
Third, He alone can give peace to a troubled heart.
Fourth, and finally, only Jesus can give us power to live an abundant life.

http://www.cru.org/how-to-know-god/jesus-and-the-intellectual/index.htm

As we get into the operations part of the Book, where we are instructed how we are to operate in faith, in order to appropriate in the earth, what we read has already been established in heaven, through the propitious work of Jesus Christ on Calvary’s cross, we learn that things operate much differently from the way we have experienced here on the earth, up to the time of our conversion that is.

We all, especially here in the West, through our liberal public education system and our Western culture, we have been programmed to believe in a certain way.

If we are going to operate in the Holy Spirit, as Jesus did and follow Him; and if we are to experience the supernatural power of God personally, in our own lives, as we read in the Bible, in the same way the first century church experienced it, that by the way turned the whole world of their day upside down, then we are going to have to modify our way of thinking, which is what true Repentance is all about; and allow the Holy Spirit, and not the spirit of this world and our past experience and education, to determine how we are to act.

It’s a TOTALLY new paradigm for us to learn.

As we read above in Mark’s account, where Jesus cursed the fig tree, and the Bible says that He spoke to it and His disciples heard him; apparently from the account nothing happen right then, after Jesus spoke, because the Bible says that they continued on their journey to Jerusalem, and it wasn’t until 24 hours later that Peter saw that the fig tree was withered from its roots.

Let us pay close attention to what Jesus then told His disciples:

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Mark 11:20-24

The Lesson of the Withered Fig Tree

20 Now in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. 21 And Peter, remembering, said to Him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree which You cursed has withered away.”

22 So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. 23 For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things which he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. 

24 Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.”

Below is an excellent lesson that shows how we can start writing the checks here in our time, and how to appropriate the supernatural manifestations in our circumstances that the Bible says we can expect to happen; and even Jesus said that even greater things then what you saw me do, will you do because I (Jesus) am going to my Father!

THE IMPORTANCE OF OUR WORDS

By Pastor Roger Anghis

April 29, 2012

Before we get started I think that it is important that we understand that the Word is a living thing.

John 6:63
“The words I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life.”

Because of this, we will always be able to get new revelation out of scriptures that we thought we had already gotten the revelation there was to get.Enter into this study with open heart and mind, not with the ‘I’ve heard this before’ attitude.

Remember also that faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word. It may be this time that you hear the Word that you breakthrough to a new level of understanding that will remove that burden and destroy that yoke.

Mark 11.22
“And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.”

This commandment is just as much for today as it was for them 2,000 years ago. We have to operate in faith.

Hebrews 11:6 says that without faith it is impossible to please God. So God tells us to have faith in Him and then He tells us how to do that:

In Mark 11:23 He says:

“For verily I say unto you, that whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.”

You’ll notice that there’s a point being made here. That point is, it is very important what you say!

How do we please God?

2 Corinthians says that we are to walk by faith. We are to live by faith and part of that faith is believing what God has told us in the Bible.

If that’s the way we’re supposed to live, then that’s how we’re supposed to live. I see no reason to make apologies for it.

If a Christian doesn’t live that way, then he is missing out on most of what God has for him.

Notice that right after He tells us to have faith, He tells us that we are to speak.

I don’t recall anywhere where Jesus spoke to an infirmity and then said, ‘ I sure hope this works.

I haven’t healed blind eyes yet.’ No! He expected everything that He said to come to pass.

That’s why He didn’t mince His words. We are supposed to do the same thing. There are those who will call us the ‘Name it and claim it.’ crowd, or the ‘Blab it and grab it’ crowd. And these terms are used in a very derogatory manor.

There are even those who make fun of us for speaking in faith. Some even go as far as despising us for what we do.

What we have to do is keep in mind that the devil has been able to infiltrate the church over the centuries with his doctrines and lies and his deceptions and one of those deceptions is the power of “confession”.

The devil has got ‘decreeing a thing’ over in the realm of magic and abracadabra. If we discount “confession” we are simply not taking God seriously about what He has told us about the words of our mouth.

Jesus is the One Who is talking here and He doesn’t lie. We know that most of the church doesn’t believe that they can have what they say simply by listening to how they talk.

Even so-called faith preachers will say things that will curl your hair.I’ve heard people say that God killed their child. I’ve hear preachers say that God could care less about your problems. He’s got bigger things to worry about than you and your problems.

This is giving power to something that is NOT supported in the scripture.

Jesus goes on to say, “Therefore I say unto you, Whatsoever things you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them.”

Jesus is telling us that we have to believe BEFORE we receive. That goes against everything we were brought up to believe.

This verse is talking about prayer and we have to be mindful of what we say about what we prayed about.

You don’t want to finish a prayer and then say something like, ‘I sure hope this works.’ Or ‘I sure hope it’s God’s will that I be healed.’

Those kind of statements are NOT in agreement with your prayer. Your prayer may be the most eloquent prayer, but if you speak in doubt and unbelief afterwards, it will negate your prayer.

You won’t move any mountains when your words don’t agree with your prayer.

Ever hear someone say, “I’m waiting for God to move this mountain.” It says “. . . that whosoever shall say unto this mountain”; It doesn’t say anything about asking God to move the mountain, it says that we have to speak to the mountain.

This alone should wake us up to the importance and the power of words. If we expect our words to be full of power and be life changing, then we have to believe what we say will come to pass.

Idle talk has to go. Dirty jokes have to go.

As you become more selective in what you say, you’ll be able to have more faith in what you say.

You may think that it would be nice to have the kind of faith that some of the patriarchs had. To be able to stand there with the fire crackling in the background and tell the king, ‘We won’t worship you no matter what you threaten us with. Or to stand at the shores of the Red Sea, with pharaoh bearing down on you and you tell the Red Sea to part. Or maybe facing Goliath with the courage that David did and fearlessly run into the battle with just a small stone.

We do have that same kind of faith.

2 Corinthians 4:13

“We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore I have spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak.”

If Paul could read and believe and then speak, then we can too. If you don’t believe in something, you won’t talk much about it.

You can tell what a person who is sick believes by listening to what they say about their sickness. If they speak of the sickness and never bring up what the Bible says about healing, we know what they have more faith in, the sickness.

If you bring up 1 Peter 2:24 they’ll say ‘Yeah, I know that, but the doctor says…’ , or ‘Yeah, I know that, but my body still hurts.’

We can see that they don’t believe the Word nor do they believe that what they say changes their situation.

You know that you believe the Word and what you say when you can smile through the pain, you’re happy through that trail because you know that you’ll come out on top.

It’s a bad witness to be down in the mouth all the time. Always looking like there’s no hope.

Jesus was anointed with the oil of gladness (Hebrews 1:9) and 1 John 4:17 describe how we are supposed to be, “. . . because as He is, so are we in the world.”

Jesus is not sad or depressed, frowning and looking like no hope for mankind, hoping He can make it through eternity without all hell breaking loose.

He’s happy, He’s cheerful and has a peace that goes beyond understanding. There are so many people who aren’t Christians simply because they have relatives that are. And if that’s how you have to be to be a Christian, they don’t want any part of it.

Why are these Christians sad and depressed? They don’t believe the Word of God. They don’t believe that they can control their circumstances by speaking life to them.

Believers are supposed to be joyful, victorious and peaceful.

James 1:18 -19

“Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.

Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.”

James is informing us that it is better to listen and get all the facts before you speak out.

How many know that there are those who will not be satisfied until all have heard their opinion even before all the facts are presented?

You hear some talk show hosts that ask their guest a question and then constantly interrupt them during their answer. “Always making sure that it is their opinion that is talked about the most.

James 1:26 – 27

“If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.

Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.”

There are two religions. Man’s religion, which is not good, and true religion, which is of God.

It doesn’t make any difference which religion you are, if you can’t control your mouth, it’s all for nothing, useless.

In this same chapter (vs. 23), James says that we need to be doers of the Word and not hearers only. The number one way to be a doer of the Word is to speak the Word consistently.

In the next chapter he tells us that faith without works is dead.

James 3:1 – 2

“My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.

For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.”

We have to ask that if we do all the right things, yet we do not control our mouths, it’s all in vain?

Is it true that if I can control my words I can control my body? Can I control my heart, my lungs, my kidneys?

James says the ‘body’ and all those are parts of the ‘body’. The Amplified says ‘control his whole body and curb his entire nature’. If you can control your mouth, you can control your life.

Let’s say you get a bad report from the doctor and everyone you meet, you tell them what the doctor says, and it isn’t good.

What are you doing?

Proverbs 6:2

“Thou art snared with the words of they mouth, thou art taken with the words of thy mouth”.

The literal translation says, ‘you are captured by the words of your own mouth’. You talk the bad report and you talk the bad report over and over keeps you on the road to the end result that the doctor said.

You are snared by the words of your mouth. Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 10:5 “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”

God says that we were healed. The physical evidence is attempting to exalt itself above the knowledge of God. Cast that down.

We are made in the image and likeness of God, we have the power to create and destroy with the words of our mouth.

The Word tells us we can be victors in all things. All means All.

Some people go to secular doctors for their problems and the doctor gives their problem a ‘name’ and then they’ll walk around saying, ‘My cancer or my diabetes.” My arthritis, my allergies, my heart problem, my bad back.

Why would you want to claim these diseases as ‘yours’?

You’ll notice that the people that ‘claim’ these things NEVER get rid of them and quite often, they even die of them.

Why do they continue to talk that way? They BELIEVE it!! They know what the Word says, but they believe what the doctor says.

God gave Joshua directions on how to have continuous success and that advise is the same for today.

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Psalm 89:34

“My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips”.

Joshua 1:8

“This book of the law shall not depart out of they mouth: but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”

You may not believe what the Word of God says, but start saying it anyway.

In the times that we are in now we are going to have to know the Word of God and believe the Word of God.

Without a strong foundation in the Word, we will not be able to stand against the enemy. If we don’t believe what the Word is telling us, the devil will do what ever he wants in our lives.

Be determined to believe. If it was good enough for the patriarchs, then it’s good enough for us.

NewsWithViews.com © 2012 Roger Anghis – All Rights Reserved

Jesus is our Solid Rock, our anchor… an ever present source of strength in our time of trouble!

Jesus is our solid Rock, our place of refuge in the midst of a storm!

Written by: Skip Barland

December 1, 2012

Whatever you may be facing today, however difficult or impossible your situation may appear to be, know this that there is a God in heaven who knows all your ways and He is intimately acquainted with your every step, and with every need or problem that you have.

So the question is often asked by many, if that be true, then why does God allow such awful things to happen in this world, often to innocent and helpless people; and if He does know my situation, then how come I always feel so alone?

Well the answer to these questions can be found in our Operations Manual (the Bible), which is God’s book of instructions that He has provided us to answer so many of these sorts of questions. The Bible is also our roadmap, showing us the way home, in how God has provided forgiveness and reconciliation to every individual, through the propitious sacrifice and shed blood of His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ.

To begin often our problems come, not to defeat us, but they come to teach us to trust in God and in His word.

We are not to worry or fret over life’s difficulties, but rather we must learn to seek first the Kingdom of Heaven; and then to trust by faith that the God of creation knows where I am..

Matthew 6:25-33

Don’t Worry

25 “So I (Jesus) tell you, don’t worry about the food or drink you need to live, or about the clothes you need for your body. Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothes.

26 Look at the birds in the air. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, but your heavenly Father feeds them. And you know that you are worth much more than the birds. 27 You cannot add any time to your life by worrying about it.

28 “And why do you worry about clothes? Look at how the lilies in the field grow. They don’t work or make clothes for themselves. 29 But I tell you that even Solomon with his riches was not dressed as beautifully as one of these flowers.

30 God clothes the grass in the field, which is alive today but tomorrow is thrown into the fire. So you can be even more sure that God will clothe you.

Don’t have so little faith!31 Don’t worry and say, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ 32 The people who don’t know God keep trying to get these things, and your Father in heaven knows you need them. 33 Seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness (meaning God’s way of doing things), and then all your other needs will be met as well.

With God everything is about covenant relationship, where we first recognize His sovereignty as our Creator and God, and then by faith we come to Him, based on our covenant relationship and the promises He has given us in His Word. .

But you may be saying I have prayed many times, but so often I feel as if I’m praying under a brass ceiling, where God seems as though He’s a million miles away!

That’s where the faith comes in, where we recognize from all the many examples and stories that are given in God’s Word that God is never very far away and that He is even closer to you than your next breathe; and is ever sensitive to the call of His children in their times of need.

The Bible not only says that He is mindful of all our troubles, but it says that He keeps a record of every tear we shed, and even keeps each one stored in a bottle.

Psalm 56:8

You are mindful of all my ways (all my troubles); and You have even kept my tears in a bottle, and everyone has been recorded in your book

Being a Christian is NOT about having a bunch of knowledge and knowing all the doctrines of the faith; all of that is good, but knowledge alone, without experience, just won’t cut it in a pinch, when we are under pressure and are being attacked on every side!

It’s having the knowledge of the word stored in our hearts, after having meditated on it day and night; and then having the experience of past trials and tribulations in our life, where God has come through for us, and we have experienced his healing or provision in our time of need. It is this experience that gives us perseverance and longsuffering in our time of need.

Life is hard and there is no question about that, and bad things do happen to good people.

In fact, your being a Christian will probably mean that your life will be even that much harder, because the enemy of our soul (the Devil) has put a target on each of our backs the moment we gave our life to Jesus!

The fact is we are in a war, and from the moment you were enlisted into God’s army you are then enrolled in His basic training camp, where we learn the ways of heaven; and how to use the tools of the Holy Spirit in order to lay hold of His promises and apply them to our life.

This is not going to be an easy trip by any means; but God is faithful; and we learn that this is true through our experiences of having been tested in the fires of life!

Below is an article that was written by Kenneth Hagin that I believe will be helpful in shining a little light on our path.

It deals with some of the laws of heaven that are so very different from the natural laws of this earthly realm that we are so familiar with.

If we are to be used by God and if we are to make progress as His children, as His occupational force in the earth, then we are going to have first repent of our earthly ways, meaning we are going to have to change the way that we think, and allow the Holy Spirit to rewrite the code, or rather the programming, that we have learned from the world.

God’s ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not ours; for as high as the heavens are above the earth, so are God’s ways and God’s thoughts higher than ours; and since He is God and we are not, then we are the ones who are going to have to change!

Does that make sense? Well then keep reading and learn the power that resides in our tongue, that the Bible says has the power to do good or evil, or cause life or death!

Have Faith in God
By Kenneth E. Hagin

For verily I [Jesus] say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain (representing any obstacle placed in our path by the enemy, the Devil), Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he says shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he says.” (Mark 11:23)

Several years ago, I was hemorrhaging from my body. I had serious pain symptoms. It was almost intolerable. The devil was giving me mental visions of cancer. I didn’t have any kind of inspiration, and all the feelings I had were negative.

Now I learned the multiplication table many years ago. It still works. Three time three is still nine. I don’t ever stop to think, Will that work? Do you suppose three times three is still nine? Do you suppose the multiplication table will work today?

I can’t get it to work for me. I see it working for others, but it won’t work for me. No, if multiplication doesn’t work for you, it’s because you don’t know the principle well enough.

I said to myself as I was lying in bed, “I learned what faith is. I learned Mark 11:23, which says, ‘Whosoever shall say and not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass, he shall have whatsoever he saith.'”

So I just started saying, “According to the Word of God, I’m healed.” In the face of pain, in the face of the most alarming symptoms, I said this. Every symptom began to abate almost immediately. And within two or three days, every symptom was gone.

Confession:

I say and do not doubt in my heart. I believe that those things that I say shall come to pass. Every day, I say, “According to the Word of God, I am healed!”

Source: Health Food Devotions by Kenneth E. Hagin.