Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Saturday, September 6, 2014
Understanding what the Eunuch would have suffered we can understand why he is drawn to these words in Isaiah. Here is a startling and powerful word picture to which he fully identifies. This man will never have children or the life that evil men stole away. Still... by divine intervention the Holy Spirit brought this passage in Isaiah to his attention and with the help of an angel this divine, supernatural, miraculous appointment took place between two unlikely men whose paths should never have crossed. The Eunuch, this court official met the Apostle Philip.
...for, "Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved (Romans 10:13).
Jesus knew the names of the demons. They confessed who Jesus, was acknowledging His authority as the Son of God. They also had an awareness of Father-God's predetermined timetable which they articulated in a clever plea, trading upon this knowledge.
And they cried out, saying, "What business do we have with each other, Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?" (Matthew 8: 29) In the same way, demons and evil spirits today, know that time is short.
Another bit of knowledge revealed to us from these passages in both Luke and Matthew, who recorded the same event, is this. Jesus allowed the demons to reveal where, by Jesus' authority demons would likely end up after such a clash in the context of exorcism. And they were imploring Him not to command them to go away into the abyss (Luke 8: 31).
Into the abyss from where there is no escape or return. Today this same authority is among the gifts, tools, and weapons God has given us as children of the Most High God, confirming Jesus' promise that after He left planet earth for Heaven, to be seated at the right hand of God the Father in all victory, He would not abandon those left on earth... as orphans. Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father (John 14: 12). We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one (1st John 5: 19).
And because we "know the rest of the story," we additionally pray that all demonic back ups and replacements be equally destroyed. Jesus did not actually need to ask the names of the demons. He knows everything. But Jesus was providing an object lesson. He was demonstrating to his followers, among them Luke and Matthew, and then down through the ages to us as preserved in His holy word, the key elements of how an exorcism is to be performed. So that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2: 10, 11).
Does that thrill you as it does me? I can see this man sitting at Jesus feet, his head resting against His Saviors' thigh, content to be basking in the love and grace of such trans-formative healing.
Another conversion. At the point of death, in the very last moments of life, Jesus said to the one thief that acknowledged who He was, as side by side they hung upon the tortured Roman crosses, these powerful and significant words. Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in paradise (Luke 23: 43) Read the full story Luke 23: 39-43.
You can pray right now and ask Jesus for this new life. Confess your sin and tell Him you need him. He'll be found.
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Wednesday, August 13, 2014
Settling this question, even when a person decides by default to deny the existence of God, is an imperative of the human design as embedded in our physicality as the operational need for oxygen. Erich Fromm believed that freedom (that God-given right of free will) was a source of conflict for all human beings. On the one hand we need freedom and long for it on many levels. On the other, the infantile core of who we are, drives some to reject personal freedom and by our choices we narrow our world. Embracing freedom is healthy. Contriving life events that constrain freedom through the use of escape mechanisms is the root of what makes us unhealthy. Fear of death, that we must face the inevitable decay of our bodies and believe this is inherently unfair, moves us toward settling this question of who God is.
For mysterious reasons we cannot fully comprehend, Planet Earth is ground zero for God's plan to play out in great complexity; past, present, and future. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit decided to reveal themselves; that humanity would know and be known by God. This was not going to be possible without freedom; the ability for human beings to make decisions for themselves, to self-determine a course of action. God placed a homing device in the hearts of man. That homing device is the stamp of eternity - where we came from and where we will end up - hopefully in His glorious presence. By this imperative there are two basic choices.
So... our first choice is to run from freedom. To ignore the great mystery of the unknown that invites us to grow. Who is God? If we decide we can have God on our terms, a God of our own making, we have created an alternate reality that narrows life and denies the mystery.
The second is to embrace the unknown. To recognize that there is a vast dimensional universe which co-exists with ours and which prayer impacts. And... there are specific places called heaven and hell. But we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal (2nd Corinthians 4: 18).
We do not turn and run from the mystery. We draw near to Jesus Christ even though much of what we know from the hurts of life, all the bitter reality of physical death and decay, may tell us that doing so isn't safe. Embracing Jesus Christ by faith means that the mystery of what we don't know and can't quantify deepens and opens us; providing a peace that transcends the physical.
Describing the angst of this dynamic the Psalmist comes to understand. You have enclosed me behind and before, and laid your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is too high, I cannot attain to it (Psalm 139: 5, 6).
In the later choice God's Son, Jesus Christ, adopts us for the very reason that we are willing to draw near to God, opening our hearts to the mystery of what we don't know and discovering a personal and authentic relationship. We move from crisis to knowledge. From knowledge to wonder - revelation, sharper intuition and personal insight being willing to let His word and His presence challenge us, to change us, even when doing so makes us uncomfortable. We are not embracing... rather we are embraced by the wonder, the manifestation, the mystery of God's love. We let go and let God - experiencing His love because He first loved us. We receive His gifts, and find that many times we are mercy zapped by the wonder that can't, for now, be fully understood. Therefore, having been justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God (Romans 5: 1, 2).
Regardless of any "religious label" where choice and autonomy is constrained, what is experienced is the counterfeit. Father God is about setting us free from the slavery of sin and death and for this He sent His son, Jesus Christ into the world that by Him, we may have eternal life as we step into the mystery of what we don't know. Any family, person, system or government that steels personal autonomy, attempts to destroy liberty, freedom of thought; those God-given human attributes. These actions are evil. Satan wants none of God's vanquishing power to work through faithful believers, inclined to pick up the torch, shinning truth into dark places. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness and the darkness did not comprehend it (John 1: 5).
Those good angels that won this war play three roles and are organized by God into troops and armies. They are warriors, ministering / protecting angels, and lastly messenger angels. The angels who won this war in heaven far outnumber those that fell to earth in a very changed condition. What a rude awakening. It's important to remember that satan and these fallen angels rebelled amid the perfection of heaven; being in the presence of God. When we rebel it is an entirely different scenario since we can only guess at what will be missed if we fail to love and trust Jesus Christ. For this reason Jesus stands ready and willing to receive us when we turn to Him in repentance, desiring to know Him. For whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved (Romans 10: 13).
Because this war, transferred to Earth and is still going on, God's army of angels are actively engaged on the side of human beings.
We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one. And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. Little children, guard yourselves from idols (1st John 5: 19, 20).
These good, uncorrupted angels, doing the will of God and under His rule and assignment, are sent forth for our benefit. Speaking of believers in relationship to angels the author of Hebrews asked the rhetorical question. Are they not all ministering spirits, sent out to render service for the sake of those who inherit salvation? (Hebrews 1: 14). And of the angels He says; Who makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire (Hebrews 1: 7). For He will give His angels charge over you to guard you in all your ways (Psalm 91: 11). It's okay to ask God to send these angels to help you in whatever conflict you are engaged in. We don't pray to angels, but it is perfectly okay to ask the Lord Jesus Christ for this specific kind of help. Though we are in this war, we prefer peace, and pray for peace. (Psalm 120)
I like to close with a verse. So many of you are in countries that experience turmoil and so I imagine you might not have a Bible handy. For this reason I try and put an entire passage in place in the knowledge that God's word has the power to heal and nourish your heart. God bless all of you; now over 90,000; most in the last two years. I may not meet you in this life, but I'll see you in that glorious place called heaven where no tear ever falls. We love Jesus! And so together, we'll rejoice.
Sunday, July 13, 2014
HEAVEN IS A REAL PLACE and Book Review / THE BOY WHO CAME BACK FROM HEAVEN by, Kevin & Alex Malarkey
The Bible tells us about Heaven and speaks of it as a real place; a place to which all who love Jesus will someday be. We will know our friends and family in heaven. There we will see Jesus. Many people, before they take that last breath into the fragile tent of their earthly lungs, speak of angels being present in the room. Some that have gone as far as the "gates of heaven" only to come back have spoken of what they've seen and experienced. When my friends Nina and Mark Haines lost their mentally ill son they both had a vision regarding him. To his father Jon said, "It's beautiful here." There are several books currently on the market about this topic; among the best -- The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven.
People who have preceded us in death, are now, part of the great cloud of witnesses that scripture speaks of surrounding us in life. Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us (Hebrews 12: 1).
Though He knows we will be sad and has designed the grieving process, Jesus tells us not to grieve as the unsaved do who have no hope. Read 1st Thessalonians 3: 13-18; and 4: 1-11.
And looking at them Jesus said to them, "With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible" (Mathew 19: 26). Also: Mark 20:27; Luke 18: 27
How do we access this power? We pray and we do not give up in prayer. We trust the many promises of God regarding prayer. God said that all His promises were "yes" and when we lift up these promises to God - that He loves us and will respond to our prayers - what follows is the triumphant "amen!" Read 2nd Corinthians 1: 18-22. About prayer, Jesus said: Truly, truly, I say to you he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go the Father. Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it. If you love Me, you will keep My commandments (John 14: 12-15).
Friday, May 16, 2014
Right now, as of, September 15, 2014, the book is up on amazon as an e-book and available for download. The soft cover will follow shortly... hopefully this week. Visit my author page at:
Readers can also send me questions or comments here at my blog, but also via the Goodreads website.
I wanted to share the cover for the WOOD'S END sequel;
THE YEAR BETWEEN THE WOOD.
Wednesday, April 30, 2014
My articles on this topic that I've posted on this blog are:
It's very helpful to read the details of other cases; those that have been successfully prosecuted. The link below provides brief overviews of various cases where perpetrators have gone to jail.
White collar criminals rob tax payers. We are going to see more and more people charged with mortgage fraud. I'd like to see more activity in prosecuting the many layered fraud schemes which sidelined untold numbers of Hamp Applications. This was accomplished with the help of Bank and Foreclosure sub-servicer employees, brokers, attorney's etc. In the case below duplicate HUD-1 documents were filed. For too many this is a significant feature of what kind of fraud may have taken place and is among the charges filed in this case.
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Monday, March 24, 2014
Son of God - The Film
In a prophetic vision Isaiah wrote of the coming Savior...
Despite the lie of casting choices from people who should know better and what this misleads people to believe, what Jesus physically looked like was, in fact, important in that Father God chose to reveal His Son as being... ordinary, physically "unremarkable." One all of us, whoever we were, could relate to.
Jesus looked like a very average person, since he came FOR all men and all women; beautiful, ugly, average, scarred, disfigured... He was about healing the internal scaring of sin and the new life and hope that only Jesus Christ can bring to desperate people; even those that do not know their deep need for new and fresh, eternal pasture. I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life and have it abundantly (John 10: 9, 10).
When Paul says that Jesus came as a bond-slave what is meant here is a servant, one who came to serve, by a free exercise of will and choice; in this case for a divine, eternal purpose whose mysteries, for now, we only know in part. Paul writes that Jesus Christ...
I guess the casting agent in Son of God didn't get this memo. The inference of the film, Son of God, went on to imply a certain magnetism in that confluence of physical appearance and inner magic, what casting agents call that "it" factor. The truth is that not one person was drawn to Jesus because He was handsome. They were drawn by the miracles He performed which pointed to Jesus being really and truly the Messiah, the true Son of God, the Savior of those who would trust Him.
He was despised and forsaken of men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and like one from who men hide their face He was despised, and we did not esteem Him (Isaiah 53: 3).
I'm not sure we needed another film that put scriptural authority on the back-burner. Perhaps the problem was in how the director interpreted the script or the fact that the editing lacked or that this was admittedly pieced together with surplus footage. I found it distracting for the several distortions and omissions.
What did I like about this film? I'm glad it was made and that it has had a good run in movie theaters all across this country. This speaks volumes to those who might be listening. I know that because of this film people will think about Jesus and perhaps some will reach for a Bible to read this powerful record of His life on earth for themselves. The actor that played Pilate, Greg Hicks, was pretty wonderful. He did an excellent job and I like how Pilate's dilemma was fleshed out in this actor's interpretation of the part he played. I'm not sure what other roles he has played, but he was professional and skilled with reams of talent. And... as they say. The camera loves him.
Jesus was approachable as He is today. His arms are wide open to all that will come. I love the following passage for what it says, but also infers. It was His mercy and compassion, this wealth of very great love for hurting people that transcended language and was the substance of communication. There was no chance whatsoever that this content of heavenly purpose could be upstaged by physical beauty. Hurting people looked into the face of Jesus and they knew... they just knew and in God's very great love for us in sending His one and only Son into a corrupted world, to a lost and corrupted people the proof of that love was seen in the miracles performed. There was not only physical healing, but eternal healing for the hungry soul.
The news about Him spread throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all who were ill, those suffering with various diseases and pains, demoniacs, epileptics, paralytics; and He healed them (Matthew 4: 24).
It is the same today. People of faith just know. We've met Jesus, had a healing encounter, received eternal salvation and the gift of the Holy Spirit who dwells within every true believer and we know, what we know... Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen (Hebrews 11: 1).
Christian film, as an evangelical and educational tool to convey Christian messages and core truths, broke into the consciousness of many people with the release of Mel Gibson’s, The Passion of the Christ, which was released February 2004.
Mel Gibson personally funded The Passion of the Christ. He had no expectation of a huge commercial success. He anticipated a limited release. As secular pressure built and denominational expectations were heard from, a fire storm of publicity was unleashed. Gibson was wise enough to capitalize on this. The degree of opposition to some "Christian" films can be equated to the degree to which satan must marshal it's forces to oppose the eternal potential of film as a creative vehicle.
NOAH with Russell Crowe
Above is an amusing and I'm guessing very apt review of Noah written by, Matt Walsh. I have yet to see this film so sharing this link for those who are interested. Had to smile at Matt's following remark...
"Naturally, we decided to spend it being pummeled by the blaring condescension of the most insipid, absurd, unimaginative, clumsily contrived piece of anti-Christian film making to come along since, well, probably just last week."
I haven't seen the film so maybe I should not comment on it. I will however, because most Christians struggle to interpret portions of Genesis 6. This being the case, I would have low expectations of an Atheist interpretation. However, as someone recently told me, "I'm glad the topic was depicted because maybe people will think about scripture." Another friend told me how "truly grieved" he was by the interpretation of Noah who was a faithful man of God.
What I'm expecting is that Jehovah God is not in any way mentioned or lifted up. I'm not expecting a Biblical depiction of the level of sin and world-wide judgment that scripture speaks of. I imagine we won't see a true account of the Nephillim and satan's true intention of using these genetically engineered, demonic-hybrids to corrupt the DNA of man. I'm told that in the film the Nephillim actually "help" Norah and are depicted as rocks. When was the last time you saw a rock defile and rape a woman? In truth, when scripture says that Noah was, "perfect in his time," what is meant is not that he was a perfect man, but that he and his family were free of Nephillim genetics imposed on the greater humanity of that time. This was a threat to God's plan in the context of His creation / the DNA through whom the Savior of the Universe, Jesus Christ would be born; fully God and fully man. ...so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2: 10, 11).
Looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds (Hebrews 2: 13, 14).
Surely our griefs He Himself bore, and our sorrows He carried; yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by his scourging we are healed. All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; but the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him(Isaiah 53: 4-6).
For whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved (Romans 10: 13).
This was to fulfill what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet: He Himself took our infirmities and carried away our diseases (Matthew 8: 17).
Also 1st Peter: 2: 24 / ...and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.
So I might or might not see the film. If I do it won't because I purchased a ticket.
About Mel Gibson
Anyway... recently I watched a documentary about actors and scandal and what was said about Mel seemed such a sad contrivance. We are invited to judge him by the sad reality of alcoholism.
I would guess that Mel Gibson's desire to do the Maccabees film as a next project and his pairing with a certain screenwriter was a set up from the start by certain factions in the film industry. Sorry Mel, and I think today you know this all too well. That man was never, I mean never, going to deliver any kind of finished screen play. I wonder what they paid him not to write?
I know I'm not the only one praying for Mel Gibson. I'd just like to remind my brothers and sisters in Christ to keep it up. Because if this movie, The Passion of the Christ, were his only accomplishment in life, it would represent a huge victory. Not only were people saved - they are still being saved. Jesus came closer to a lot of lukewarm believers. I myself was brought closer to Jesus in seeing what My Savior really and truly suffered depicted as it was... and for each of us.
Enemies want Mel Gibson to fade into the woodwork. Shamed and humiliated to never show his face. Hollywood, for the most part, do not shoot their addicts. They raise them up, give them jobs as seen with Charlie Sheen and Robert Downey, Jr etc... Perhaps it is true that certain segments in traditional film-making only shoot their Christian, conservative addicts.
Interested in Christian film? Call me: (901-417-4976)