Tag Archives: Christ

On the Road to Damascus

Something to think about.

On the Road to Damascus

Then Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest and asked letters from him to the synagogues of Damascus, so that if he found any who were of the Way, whether men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem.

As he journeyed he came near Damascus, and suddenly a light shone around him from heaven. Acts 9:1-3


This is the famous story of Saul’s conversion to Christianity. Saul who is later renamed Paul is on his way to persecute those who believe in Jesus. He is headed down a road with a definite destination with a definite purpose full of self-righteousness. He is headed in the wrong direction. He is headed down a path that is in direct opposition to where he wants to be. He is persecuting Christians because he believes they are opposing and denying God. He is doing it in defense of God. He believes that in incarcerating Christians, he is doing Gods will.  


Before we became Christians, we were not so different from Paul. Though we do not, in this day in this country incarcerate people for being Christians. We were headed down the wrong road for the wrong reason. Saul regardless of his reasoning is headed in the wrong direction. He is not working on God’s side he is working against God. We, before Christ were on our way to Damascus. We were on the wrong road for the wrong reason to accomplish the wrong goal. 


We are not Paul we will not write parts of the New Testament. We will not be quoted around the world. But our conversion to Christianity is just as miraculous as Paul’s.  We all have to have an encounter with Jesus for our conversion to be accomplished. Every one of us must have a personal interaction with Christ for a conversation to occur.  It is not just an intellectual realization of truth it is a personal connection with the risen savior. We all have to make contact with Jesus. It is no different for any of us. Without, an on the road experience, none of us will meet Jesus.  


The conversion of Saul was personal, powerful and intimate. It was not an experience born of mysticism. Your contact, connection with Christ must have a tangible permanent effect on your life. It is not something you can walk away from and remain the same. If you leave as you came, you did not make the connection. When you meet Christ, you will in some way leave changed, made new, born again.

Advertisements

Something to think about.

Wisdom

8“ For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. 9“ As the heavens are higher than the earth,so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.’ Isaiah 55:8-9
 
Through Isaiah God is making a distinction between His creation and Him. It’s a distinction that appears to have been lost by man. We are not God’s equals. We don’t know what He knows. We will never attain that place. If for an instant we would stop and look at our existence and be honest with our selves. We would admit we know nothing. The universe is beyond our comprehension. We sit on this small insignificant rock floating in a vast universe and claim we know where we came from. Some of us claim we self-created which makes absolutely no sense.
 
Because of the size of the universe, the known universe there are important facts that have not been discovered. We barely coexist. We are fighting the same battles for the same reasons. Technology changes but we are still fighting the same wars. Generation after generation after generation the wars continue. We can’t permanently solve any issue. The more we learn the more our ineptitude is exposed.
 
We may be more comfortable more affluent, but still the most heinous of crimes exist. Slavery, starvation, famine, injustice, these crimes are the hallmark of our societies. If the product is the proof of our superiority, intellect, and industriousness we have proven our selves to be savages. Affluence and wealth only hide the stench of ignorance. If we were truly wise, the crimes we perpetuate, create and support would not exist.
 
Our ways are not His ways, our thoughts are not His thoughts, our wisdom is not His wisdom. God, the creator of the universe is so much more than we can imagine. If I have any wisdom, it is this, the God who created the universe and humanity is superior to His creation.

Are You Ready?

Something to think about.

Are You Ready?
 
15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: 1 Peter 3:15
 
Are you ready? Can you give an answer to any man who asks you the question why do you believe? If you do not have an answer, you do not believe. The answer is not a long dissertation or a doctoral thesis. It is a simple statement like this one.
 
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16
 
Christianity is based on this verse. It’s not complicated. It is not a mystery; it does not need immense intelligence to understand. God did all He did because He loves you. Your statement does not have to be new or unique. It does not have to be revelational to the world. But it does have to be the cornerstone of your belief system. It is the one thing that cannot change. For me, I believe Jesus was resurrected from the dead.  Not figuratively or metaphorically just as it says in the bible. I believe it happened. For me, everything else flows from the resurection.
 
Are you Ready?

Empty Tomb

Even Now

Something to think about.

Even Now

We in Florida are facing a serious and dangerous situation with Hurricane Irma. We have to do what we can to prepare for this event. We also need to take a moment and remember God is with us even now even when we are in the midst of the storm.

Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 ESV 

Do not fear, do not be dismayed our God is with us, and He has the last word in all things. 

28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28  (NKJV)

 

Rejected

Something to think about.
 
Rejected
 
66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him. 67 “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve. 68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.” 70 Then Jesus replied, “Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil!”John 6:66-70
 
Jesus was rejected to His face. In this verse, it says “many of his disciples.”  The inference or deduction I get is, much more rejected Him than the twelve that didn’t. It is imperative for us to realize that not everyone is going to respond to Jesus. If this verse is a sign of a broader reality, we must come to the understanding that many will reject Christ. There will be those that upon hearing the word and understanding the word will reject it. For those of us who believe that statement is incomprehensible. How could anyone in their right mind deny Christ? Since we know, there is nothing, no one better. We know and believe with total confidence and expectation the promises of salvation and eternal life. We believe in restoration, reconciliation, rebirth and new life. We believe in the grace, redemption, and forgiveness of God.  Furthermore, we accept and expect all Gods promises to be fulfilled. We know that the God of creation through His Son Jesus has provided for our eternal life with Him in heaven. We can’t understand how anyone can reject Him.
 
Jesus does something here we need to become aware of. He does not turn and chase those who reject Him. He turned to the twelve who recognized Him for who He was and changed the world with those twelve. As the family of God and as individuals we need to stop chasing rejects and embrace those who God has chosen.  We need to seek and find the chosen.
 
There are two important gems in this section of Scripture. One is your uniqueness in accepting and understanding the call of God. Many hearing and understanding will never accept the reality of Christ. You are special for you have heard and accepted His sacrifice for your life. Two and most importantly are, God chose you. As He chose the twelve, He chose you. You are the preferred of God. We need to start acting like it. You are exalted above the rest of humanity because He chose you. The rest of mankind will not sit at the wedding feast of the lamb.

Handed Over

Something to think about.
Handed Over
9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. Matthew 24:9
In some Bibles, this part of Scriptures is under the heading of “End Times.” This is Jesus speaking, and He is referring to events that will occur before His return. The question is, is this our destiny? For many in the Middle East, this is their reality today. The Christian population in many of  Middle Eastern Countries have been annihilated. There is a genocide being committed in the Middle East, but of course, our press has ignored it. ( see https://adfinternational.org/detailspages/press-release-details/never-again-un-side-event-on-genocide-in-the-middle-east )
Here in the USA the former bastion of Christianity we are under constant attacks from many sides. We are being attacked either openly or subversively. Our freedoms religious and civil are under constant assault. The writing is on the wall to the suppression if not eradication of Christianity.  People are openly pushing for the censorship of our views. If you’re against homosexuality, you are ostracized, humiliated and labeled ignorant or intolerant. If you support Biblically based marriage, you are closed and simple minded. If you are against the continued murder of the unborn otherwise known as abortion you are a misogynist. If you hold any traditional religious views, you are regarded as a simpleton not worthy of serious consideration.  If you expose the impossibility of evolution, you are called a crack pot. All of these things do not constitute what Jesus was referring to when He spoke the words contained in this verse. What He was referring to is what is happening in the Middle East. What we are now seeing in this country is the precursor is what is taking place in the Middle East.
I don’t know if it is too late to turn from this path of self-destruction. Granted I do not see any hope in returning to where we came from. But I pray and hope that we can turn to the path that has been the only hope for the world and that is the path to Christ. If we can not turn the tide of anti-Christian persecution we will fulfill his end time prophecy.  We will be “handed over to be persecuted and put to death.”

Good and Faithful Servant

Something to think about.
 
Good and Faithful Servant.
 
Matthew 25:21 (NKJV)
 
21 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
 
If there was ever a goal to strive for it is this, to hear the Lord proclaim over your life “well done good and faithful servant.” A few years ago after my heart attack, my prayer was that God would allow me to serve Him. My reasoning for the prayer was this; God had saved my life. He restored me after a massive heart attack with life threatening complications. I felt and thought if he would allow me to become a lowly servant, I could show some appreciation for what he had done. I didn’t feel qualified to be any more than a servant. I prayed that prayer for a couple of years. Then I saw an opportunity and started to serve Him in a small group in my church. Shortly after that, I got involved with another group. Then another to the point now that I am now very involved in the church. As time passed and my involvement increased. I came to understand that the prayer I prayed though simple was not what I thought it was. I thought I was asking permission to assume a position of lowest rank. A position equal to my worthiness.
 
“The Lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.” Notice it does not say, ‘Well done, good and faithful priest, doctor, lawyer, king. It does not say teacher, preacher, singer, poet, professor, apostle. It does not say, deacon, general or any other title or position. It says, servant. What I have come to realize is that what I was asking for was/is the highest calling of God. I do not remember anywhere else in the Bible where God commends man for his actions. When he does acknowledge mans actions, he calls him a servant. I believe our highest value is not what we are recognized for or what we have earned. It is determined by our level of servant hood. To those who are faithful in the little things it says “I will make you ruler over many things.” God will make the servant a ruler over many things.
 
When I prayed to become a servant, I hoped that I could show God appreciation and gratefulness for what He had done. Now I know what I was praying for has opened the door to seeing, living and participating in the fulfillment of God’s will. When you become His servant your highest call. Your life will be changed, you will be fulfilled, you will experience God in ways you can’t imagine.
 

Commonplace

Something to think about.
Common place
6 He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. Matthew 28:6
“For he is risen” the four most important words ever spoken. The world has been shaken to its core at these four words. An actual change in the history of man occurred on account of these words. A new hope and reality came into existence when they were uttered. A whole new way of living was validated because of these words.
The crucifixion of Jesus was not the single most important event in history. His resurrection was. Jesus was dead, Christ was resurrected. This man died. He was resurrected as King and Savior. His resurrection was by the God of the universe. Have we lost sight of this event?
We are so busy with our lives. With doing for God. We try to flourish and excel in our gifts, jobs, lives, have we lost sight of why we do what we do. Have we turned the resurrection into a commonplace event? Has it become a historical event that we lump together with all others? Has it become something that is not life altering. Something commonplace? Something that we have become so accustomed to we don’t give it the importance it requires?
“He is risen.” Have you ever seen the dead come back to life? I’m not talking about CPR or any rapid resuscitation protocol. I mean someone who has been dead for an extended period of time being brought back to life. No other such event has been recorded or claimed by anyone in History. Do you realize this event was witnessed by hundreds of people? It was reported by his followers. These twelve men went on to change the world. Not based on a conspiracy or on Jesus’s religious philosophy but on His resurrection. His inner circle never recanted their claims. Even when threatened with death. Even as they were killed
The most important aspect of this event is this. Jesus the Christ is alive. He was not resurrected to die again. He was not resurrected to be lost or hidden from humanity. That reality should be paramount in your mind every day through every situation. God or bad. He was the first to be resurrected.  His resurrection gives us hope for the future. It validates all of His claims. It solidifies His claims of eternity. It turns an interesting philosophy into an undeniable reality. Every Christian belief hinges on this one event. His resurrection validates all of the claims about Him. From His virgin birth to being the sacrificial lamb for the world. Without the resurrection, we diminished Christ to an interesting person in human history. He becomes as so many others without eternal consequence. He is then an enigma without substance or value.
Christ is everything. There is before His resurrection and after. Before is hopelessness and futility. After is eternity and victory. He is resurrecting every day the lives of those who believe. “He is risen.”

Repent Revival

Something to think about.
 
Repent Revival
 
17 From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” Mathew 4:17
 
I have repented. Yes, I’m still working on it. I am still in the process of receiving all that is associated with repentance. This commandment of Christ still haunts me. It rattles me to my core because it is still a valid call. There are those around me that have not repented. I am not talking about those in Hollywood or in politics or business. Nor any other group of people, I am talking about my brother, sisters, nieces, nephews in short my family. There is an entire world living all around me that have not repented that have not accepted Christ. I pray for revival in this country, state, and city. I need to start praying for revival in my family.  Is it possible that we have not seen a great revival in this country because we are praying for someone else? The next great revival needs to begin at home. The great field of harvest is not in some far away city or country. It is within our homes. With the people, we break bread with. With those that will no longer listen to our message. If they won’t listen how can we reach them? We need to pray for them. We need to stand in the gap for them. What that means is we need to chase after God on their behave. We need to cry out to God for their salvation. We need to get into the battle for their souls. They may not listen to us, but God has the resources to reach them He has the means to touch their hearts. 
 
Have we given up on our families? Have we written them off as unreachable, unworthy, hopeless unforgivable? Have we become blase about their eternal destination. Have we accepted them as a lost cause? Have we turned them over to eternal death? If we are to see revival it needs to start at home. If we have written off our families do you really think we will care about the lost of the world? This is a call to action to pray for your family to begin a revival in your home. 

There Are No Civilians

Something to think about.
 
There Are No Civilians.
 
12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Ephesians 6:12 (KJV)
 
We’ve heard this verse quoted, preached, and expounded upon. Yet have we heard what it says? We miss the first three words.  “For we wrestle” It is written in the present tense. Not just something that has occurred in the past or something that will happen in the future. It is happening now.
 
The spiritual forces that are aligned against us are not excluding the unbeliever. They are using the unbeliever to subvert and attack the will and purposes of God. This battle that we are involved in is all-consuming. It affects every area of our lives. The world is losing this battle, immorality is being exalted as the new way. 
 
We are our own worst enemies. We have kept silent for fear of being offensiveness. We have allowed political correctness to define our boundaries. We have silently consented to the removal of God from our public lives. We have permitted the rulers of darkness to identify and control the battle lines of righteousness. Our enemies the spiritual forces of wickedness are disguised in our presence. They have been renamed and rebranded as something less than wicked. We have submitted to our enemies. By allowing wickedness to restrict our beliefs to the four walls of our churches. We have allowed ourselves to be placed in a room of obscure access. We have cowered under the pressure of societies insistence on our silence. We should be the vanguard of righteousness not a secret society of nostalgia. We are becoming the outdated pariah of society. 
 
As a result of expecting someone else to wrestle for us. We are losing ground to the secular anti-God forces in society. We honestly believe that the laws of this country will defend us against the attacks of the enemy. While the enemy finds ways to use these very laws to promote unrighteousness. 
 
We must put on the armor of God and valiantly press the battle for humanity with the word  God and our testimony. God never said thou shall be silent.