Thursday, February 26, 2009

Purpose of Prayer - (from Todd's email)

Sup fellas, I want to start a multiple part series on prayer. It should make for good discussions and great growth. Prayer is the most talked about and most common practice of Christians but yet is the least activity that we are involved in because why? They/we don’t get results. So, I want to dive in to the very core of this integral part of our lives. This is all scripturally backed, but I am also pulling mostly from Myles Munroe's "Understanding the Purpose and Power of Prayer." So, these ideas/theologies are not originally mine, but I believe it is something some of us may be missing from our "Kingdom" way of thinking and living.
First, a few questions.....
If God is sovereign, then why should we pray?
If God can do whatever He wishes, then why pray?
If God cannot be affected or influenced by humanity then why pray?
All valid questions for someone who does not know, but the Bible says we are commanded to pray. Jesus never said “if” you pray, He said “when” you pray (Matt. 6:5). We are EXPECTED to pray. So, you are praying, but no answers are showing. You may already know, but if not we will see why as we go on in this series. See, prayer is meant to be answered; otherwise God would not ask us to pray. He would not waste our time, He is too practical for that. Jesus expected to be heard. It says in John 11:41-42 “Father I thank you that you have heard me, I knew that you always hear me.”

So, why does God need/command us us to pray? Without God, man cannot, and without man, God will not. Let me explain this.
Genesis 1:26 “ Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground."
Two words are at the heart of prayer, “let them”. God gave us authority, rulership, and governorship over the earth, He did not say “let us have dominion”, but “let them”. This separates us from God. If He had said “let us” then He would have been included in the activities of earth. God took Himself out of the equation and made us the authority of the planet. God himself was taken out of authority by law, His Word. So here comes a bold statement….whatever happens on this earth is man’s responsibilities. So, all the corruptions of the world are not God’s problem, they are our problem! To the people that ask “if God is love and in control then why does He let this evil happen?”, the previous statement is the answer. Everything we are suffering from, we created. God left the management of earth to us, humans.
Now do not take me the wrong way here. This does not mean that we are diety or equal to God. Adam and Eve could fulfill their purposes only by depending on and communicating with God. Similarly, we can fulfill our purpose only as we are connected to our power source. However, we must recognize God’s high esteem and purposes for us. In essence, God said to man “Let Me rule through you so you can appreciate, enjoy, and share in My governance. The word human is actually a combination of 2 words, “humus” which means dirt, and “man” which is the spirit being (male and female) that God created. God took the spirit man and put it inside the earth suit or “dirt” suit. This is whom God gave dominion over the earth. So, stick with me here, any spirit on earth without a physical body is, according to God, illegal. That’s right, illegal. The only person that God gave legal authority over the earth to is a “human”. That law, God will never violate. Why? Because God is a spirit with no physical body. So, God will never enter the earth without a physical body (but of course He does later on) or without cooperating with us (through prayer as you will see). So, the most powerful creature on earth according to God’s Word is a human.
Still not sold on the whole illegal thing, consider this. Don’t you think that God could have stopped Adam and Eve in the garden? He could have yes, but that would have violated His Word, His law. He saw the impending destruction, but all He could do is watch, and Satan knew that. If God had broken His word then there would be no reason to trust God’s Word ever again. So, if you think about it (and another bold statement i guess), the fall of humanity was a result of God’s faithfulness to His Word.
See, God is as sovereign as His Word. He is sovereign until He speaks, and then He is limited to His Word. The scriptures back this law. God also chose never to violate His Word, and Holiness protects His integrity. So, when He spoke, His Word became law. Psalm 138:2 says, “I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.” (KJV)
The Hebrew word for name is “being”. That’s why when Moses asked God what is your name, God replied “I Am”. Why? Well, the Hebrew concept of name is the thing, for “I Am” means whatever God is at the time. It changes to whatever you need God to become at the time. So when God said I place my Word above my name, He was placing His Word above Himself, so when He speaks, He Himself becomes submitted to whatever He says. Heaven and hell will pass away before God will ever violate His Word, right?
But then God did something wonderful and it is shown a couple chapters later, He made a promise to the devil in Genesis 3:15. Paraphrased it says the woman that satan used to destroy humanity, God said she shall provide for Me(God) a physical body to enter the earth.
We will pick up here next week.
I am only emailing this, I do not know how to post on the blog site, because i am not a member, just a follower, (maybe you have to be invited to join). So if someone could please post it for me, I would appreciate it.
trying to die to myself,

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Choices That Lead To Surrender

We all make choices everyday some can be more important than others. One of my favorite ideas is to make a decision for the day ("it's going to be a good day") when you wake up and then try to live it out. I have found this to be important in my own life because all to often I will wake up in a bitter mood and carry it through out the day for no good reason (pretty weak if you think about it).
Christy (my wife) and I have been reading through Luke and just last night we came across chapter 6 (v. 20) which is his interpretation of the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-12). No coincidence that today I was talking/fellowshipping with a teamate of mine today and mentioned that it was my day to blog and he shared his most recent daily bread which was the beatitudes. So here is my interpretation of what he (Kevin) shared with me.
Luke 6:20-23 "...blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you shall be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh. Blessed are you when people hate you and when they exclude you and revile you and spurn your name as evil, on account of the Son of Man! Rejoice in that day, and leap for joy, for behold, your reward is great in heaven;..." ESV
Poor means poor in material things, hunger means physically hungry, weep means mourn over the state of things, and then hate, exclude, revile, and spurning of names are forms of persecution (Acts 5:41, 16:25, 21:13, James 1). What Jesus is saying is that in all these circumstances we have a choice to make and that choice is to surrender it over to God or to grip it and rip it ourselves. We can be blessed by being poor and waiting on the Lord for peace and deliverance. The same can be said for the rest of the Beatitudes. So far in our lives what have we chosen to do? How consistent have we been with those choices and what have we learned?
My stats right now are laughable when it comes to surrender and making the choices to trust God when the situation gets thick/tough. My instinct is to grip it myself and try to beat it into submission like the Matt Hughes of 2006. However my past shows that when I grab the situation myself I rip it and break it and make a mess of it like a little kid trying to handle something fragile. Can you imagine how frustrated God must be with me? But He isn't, He is waiting with open arms more than likely waiting for me/us to ask Him to take the wheel. Have you asked Him to take the wheel lately? Let's make the choice today to trust God in everything and depend on Him for all things knowing how good of a friend He is.

Father, we surrender to You, take the wheel, drive my life like You know how and do it according to Your perfect wheel. We know you didn't think this up last night and so here we trust that You know what is best for us, we love You and praise You, Amen!

Monday, February 23, 2009

In Case You Missed It- "Be Encouraged"

This is from Jackie Farmer a member of the Fellowship
Gentlemen, let me first introduce myself. My name is Jackie Farmer. I had the privilige of meeting Ben in the Dominican this past November. He was talking about your fellowship and I asked if I get your devotions for the High School Baseball team I coach. I would copy your emails into a new one, give the author credit, and send it into what grew into over 100 people. When this became a blog I copied from here becuase teens can be a little lazy. I and a fellow pastor were so inspired we began an email devotion ourselves. Your ministry is reaching an incredible number of people. I just felt God wanted me to let you know. Based upon one conversation in the Dominican here is what I have been praying for:Adam to be able to witness to Skip and he come to know Christ (that is actually on our church prayer list)Each of your careers and healthThe expansion of this blogThe expansion of your ministryKeep up the good work, you may never know just how many lives you encourage, I have one athlete, who wants to live for God becuase of this ministry. Be encouraged.

Hebrews 12

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up..." Hebrews 12:1 NLT

Everyday we walk into the clubhouse we are surrounded by fellow believers and unbelievers. How much gossip goes on in the clubhouse and on the field? Do you find yourself getting in those convo's to come off cool to your teammates? Strip it off. How about when a certain magazine is on the bathroom floor and it's staring you right in the face, and you think it's okay because your in a stall and it's private? News for ya... God is in that stall with you. Strip it off.  When you perform well or are coming off a great season and the media is constantly pumping you up and praising your name... Who do you give credit to? Are you ashamed of Jesus Christ? Are you worried/scared to declare his name to the unbelievers that you encounter everyday? Strip it off.

"And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith..." Hebrews 12:2 NLT

This post is not only a challenge for the people that are reading this but it is a huge challenge for myself. The game of baseball and more importantly the game of life can create a huge amount of fear, worry, and anxiety. Some days are much easier for me to wake up in the morning and be mindful of Jesus and to bare the cross, but the minute I get complacent or drift back to my old self... God is quick to humble my heart. I had an opportunity today to witness to someone and I froze up and kept that Holy Spirit on "mute". I want to confess to you all and repent tonight so I can be washed clean and move forward. God has blessed us with a tremendous platform and how dare we think for one minute that It's not about Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. It's all about him, and he's the reason we are here. 

In Christ's Name,

Friday, February 20, 2009

What is a True Church?

To get right to the point, I think Terry's idea for the e-church is a great idea, but I don't think we should refer to it as a church and those leading, as church leaders.

What are the marks of a true church? Some quote Jesus when he says, "where two or three are gathered in my name there I am in their midst" (Matt 18:20). Does that qualify as a local church? Does that mean if I had some of you guys over for dinner and we began to talk about God we would be having church?

I must confess, for most of my life I have had a very weak view of the church. Part of that is because I grew up in the highly individualized culture of sports. I thought Christianity was just me and my Bible. When I could I would go to church, but just to improve my relationship with Jesus, not to enter into community. FCA was great, baseball chapel filled a huge void, but those are not enough. Christianity is meant to take place among a community of believers.

So what are the marks of a true church?

1. The preaching of the Gospel. You don't have a true church where the Gospel is not preached. If I heard Terry correctly, this e-church is not for preaching, but for sharing our testimonies, devotionals, and words of encouragement. Even if preaching was part of it, who would preach? Are they theologically qualified? Are they gifted to preach? Has God called them to preach?

2. Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. The New Testament word for church is ecclesia which means “called out ones.” How do you identify with this group of called out ones? Through Baptism. Baptism is an outward display of what took place on the inside. That is how you identify with the church. How do you continue to identify with the church after Baptism? The Lord’s Supper. If these two things are absent then it would be hard to indentify what is taking place as church.

There are other characteristics of a true church but these are essential.

I want to reiterate that I think Terry has a great idea, I just think it should be an off shoot of e-fellowship. We can do exactly what he wants to do under the banner of e-fellowship. We are a parachurch ministry, we are not taking the place of our local churches.

Some of you might think I am making a big deal out of nothing, but I really believe it is important.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

When In Berea, Do As The Bereans Do

Do as the Bereans do
Acts 17:11 “Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.” NIV

They were noble, they were eager, they examined the messages, and they developed what can be called a legacy of Godliness. There are many similarities here that I strive for in my life. I want to know the truth, the entire truth inside and out. We should be eager to learn the scriptures and to have God’s truth revealed through reading and fellowship etc. The problem is we’re not, or at least I often am not eager, I’m tired and lazy and easily choose to watch MTV instead of a podcast bible study. My computer crashed last night and it took that to get me to finally dig into my Bible after watching TV and playing cards for 9 hours straight. I believe the Bereans must have developed some habits and so must we to really start to make headway on this front. Just like we have made a prayer list to help remind us to pray (also being specific), it might be a strategic move to develop a habit of studying the scrips.

2Timothy 2:15 “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” NKJV

Note again that this is another scripture that talks about studying the scrips (being diligent, dividing, the Word/Bible). Let’s set aside time every day to read something and spend some time with our God, Creator, Redeemer, Great Physician, Prince of Peace, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Emanuel.
Lord forgive us of our sins, wash us clean from the dirt that plagues us and keeps us from a closer relationship with You, fill us up with love so we can pour it out in a major way on others, You are the greatest and we love You, help us to set aside time to spend in Your presence. Amen

Monday, February 16, 2009

8 reasons to memorize scripture

1) Memorizing scripture makes meditation possible at times when you can't be reading the bible and meditation is the pathway into deeper understanding.
2) Memorizing scripture strengthens my faith because faith comes from hearing and hearing by the word of god and that happens when I'm hearing the word in my head.
3) Memorizing scripture shapes the way I view the world by conforming my mind to God's point of view.
4) Memorizing scripture makes God's word more readily accessible in overcoming temptation to sin because God's warnings and promises are the way we conquer the lies of the devil.
5) Memorizing scripture enables me to hit the devil in the face with a force he cannot resist to protect my self and my family from his assault. 
*What are you hitting Satan with!? How anyone walks through this devil ruled world without a sword in there hand in beyond me!
6) Memorizing scripture guards my mind making it easier for me to detect error and the world is filled with error because the god of this world is a liar
7) Memorizing scripture provides the strongest and sweetest words for ministering to others in need.
8) Memorizing scripture provides the matrix for fellowship with Jesus because he talks to me here (the bible) and nowhere else.

Watched this video on John Piper and bit this whole post. This really hit home for me and makes me want to battle for the kingdom of God. Praise Em'!


Sunday, February 15, 2009


How does the idea of sharing Jesus Christ with everyone you know sound to you? Well I think a powerful opportunity has been revealed to me that will enable us all to share Jesus with everyone we know. You see, e-fellowship started with 3 or 4 guys sharing Christ with each other through weekly emails. Now, e-fellowship has grown so much that we all are starting to search for ways to take this whole thing a little further. Well today I want to reveal to you what was revealed to me during my 28 hour drive out west to spring training. How does the idea of "e-Church" sound to you guys? Here's how we do it:

Congregation - Everyone who wants to be involved makes a list of every single person's email address that they have access to. We then combine all of the email addresses into one mass email list which is our congregation.

Church Leaders - We have 4 to 6 people volunteer to be the speakers of the e-Church. The church leaders will alternate weeks in which they deliver a message through email to the congregation. This means if you choose to be a church leader then you must be responsible enough to save the mass email list to your email account (this is not a simple "reply all" format) and be prepared to deliver your message each time your week comes around. Also, you will be called on to deliver your personal testimony for your first message so that the congregation will get to know you and how you came to know Jesus. Each message that the church leader gives will need to be in a specific format (i'll explain) so that each week the emails' appearance is consistent and neat. Also, since none of us are educated Pastors we are going to maintain a limited criteria. This won't be the same as e-fellowship because its not a small group. It's going to be a congregation full of believers, unbelievers, men, women, children, and adults so we are not going to be teaching and preaching. We are going to stick to the same criteria that the disciples stuck to when they started the christian church. We are simply going to share what Christ is doing and has done in our lives. Each week is just going to be a real life testimony of our lives with Christ.

Service - The service will be a simple email from a church leader to the congregation one day each week. Just like church, everyone in the congregation will basically just have access to read a message once a week. There will be no pressure for the congregation to respond or make comments about any of the emails. Each email will simply conclude with an invitation for anyone with questions to reply to the church leader who sent the message that week. This is where it can get deeper because if someone does reply with a question or comment then now the church leader can expand on his message with a one on one relationship with a member of the congregation. The one on one relationships that can be built between church leaders and members of the congregation are crucial when the opportunity arises. This is why the church leaders need to be ready to take on the responsibilities of being a leader. Think big. If we have a congregation of hundreds of people then hopefully 1-5 people will be led to reply one day. If you as a church leader are building one on one relationships with 5 different people then chances are you will stay pretty busy and this needs to be recognized before volunteering to lead.

So this is a breakdown of e-Church. It is basically a church through email since we will have a congregation that hears a message once a week from a church leader. I had tons of things running through my head while all of this was coming to me during my drive but I couldn't write everything down. Therefore, I know I may have left some things out so please feel free to ask a bunch of questions. I came up with a few questions below that I thought might be popular with everyone. Let me know what you guys think and lets try and get this started as soon as possible. I'm hoping that if we work hard enough then we will have a mass email list ready and our first testimony given by the first of April. What do you guys think?



How do we compose our individual list of email addresses to add to the mass email list?
- I will compose a general message briefly explaining what we are starting and then forward it to everyone in e-fellowship that wants to participate. You will then forward the message to every single person that you have email access to (christian and non-christian). When I say everyone, I mean everyone. Don't leave out anyone. In the email we will ask people who wish to not receive any more emails from us to simply reply and say "no thanks". This will weed people out and finalize your list. Then you send your finalized list to me in alphabetical order. Alphabetical order so that it is easier for me to eliminate duplicate email addresses when I compose the mass email list.

Won't people who don't know the church leaders be confused when they start receiving random emails from them?
- Once we have gotten the mass email list I will send out a message or two explaining what this thing is all about. Then the church leaders will take turns sharing a short biography and personal testimony so the congregation will come to know each of the church leaders.

What is the specific format mentioned above for the message each week?
- Basically, we want this to be a well-oiled machine. One reason the Apple company has been so successful is because of the incredible presentation of their products. This is why each email we send each week needs to look consistent and clean. If the emails look random and thrown together then people will begin to lose interest because the email won't be appealing to read. Once all of the church leaders are decided I will share more details on the format.

How do we get this thing started?
- We need everyone who is in to start getting their email list ready and we need volunteers to step up and be church leaders. The hardest part of this whole process is getting the list together. Getting the list together, I admit, will take a lot of time and effort but the payoff will be more than worth it. Once we have the mass email list and all of the church leaders save it to their email accounts, it will be a piece of cake from then on. I will take the responsibility of being a church leader and I will keep this whole operation organized. I will be responsible for keeping the church leaders informed on when they are supposed to speak and will make sure everything runs clean. If a church leader writes a message one week that differs from our format then I will keep them accountable. I will begin work on the introduction message that all of you will forward to your individual email lists and then we can go from there.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Watch Your Tongue

E-fellowship...whats up? (Did you read that with a echoing deep voice? Cuz thats how it sounded in my head.) Anyway, today i'll be talking about controlling our tongues....
JAMES 3: 3-6 3When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. 4Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. 5Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. 6The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. Wow! And ouch! I have fallen from that horse more than once and will probably again. I'm not just talking about cussing. I'm talking bout everything we say. Are we lifting people up...or are we tearing em down. Are we telling lies or are we lettin our yesses be yesses and no's be no's. Spring training started today and i've already got one tear down in the book...felt guilty the resta the day. Lets ask ourselves these questions. How do we think our teamates see us? And, almost more importantly, how do our biggest rivals see us? I want that team i'm playing against to know that i'm bringing everything i got, all day, but when the day is done they haven't lost any respect for me as a competitor and man. In the same way i want my teamates to look at me as someone who they can trust to go into battle with them, and know i aint running away, and wont have deceived them with false words. Another aspect is of the fans watching, or if you arent playing, just everyday citizens. Are they seeing us spout love or erupt with F-bombs. The point is this...there are always people watching, and waiting to judge us. Lets not give em any fuel for the fire.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Don't forget who you once were

Titus 3:3-5 "For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works..." NKJV
I think I'm a good christian, I really do, I read, fellowship, act bold (sometimes), pray, repent, and go to church. Pretty good resume? On top of all that I got this sweet Bible comentary that I can refer to and put together a radical study on Revelation and make everyone in this group think I'm a super bible scholar. Sadly, I really do this, no joke! I get filled up with a sense of pride sometimes that takes me away from the main point that should be my/our focus (Jesus Christ and the Love He showed in the atonement). It has been good for us to get into Revelation but for me there has been a backlash because I have lacked discipline in my thoughts by getting swollen with pride because I am acting like I have all the answers for the prophecies listed in Revelation. I subconciously used this study/blog to exaly myself by acting like I know so much. Thanks to a couple of the guys to get me back in line by expressing their desire to stay humble and focused on the word and not opinion. It is too often that we get blessed and forget where we came from. God gives us a book in our life and we swallow it and try to stack it ontop of the other books we have read so we can stand above others. Fact is we were once foolish and deceived like this verse from Titus says. We don't deserve salvation but yet God loved us so much He gave us a chance at it anyway. This will help us to deal with other people which can be challenging. Let's lean on the fact that we can fall short too and get filled up with that love again so we can start spilling out on people again (like the girl in the bar who used to bump into you and spill her drink all down your neck because her glass was too full, but it was okay because she was cute and gave you a little conversation from the incident. Anybody? No, my bad that was a bad example). I just wanted to cut myself open a bit and share what is happening over here. Like Blake said in his post a while back "Pride is ugly". I am so glad we have such a knowledgable group who continues to participate and keep us focused. I apologize for acting a fool and appreciate all the prayers.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

History lesson....literally

Some might not even click on this link because we are so bored when we hear the word "history" due to our government schooling of the subject that was anything but riveting.  However, we as Christians are quite obsessed with history.  All we do when reading the bible is doing constant history lessons.  One thing that is hard to comprehend is that God created history.  He stepped out of eternity to "start time".  That blows my mind, since our whole life revolves around either looking forward or backward based on the idea of the clock ticking.  God started that clock, with Jesus and the Holy Spirit at His side.  Tough, tough, tough to wrap your skull around that moment.

What does History mean to us as Christians?

Since our Revelations study we have been arguing about the future, so I thought we could get at in  with regards to the past, ha.  We, as christians, have a very linear view of history.  We do not see it in cycles.  This is actually vital to our way of believing.  Our line begins with Creation, hits it's peak with Christ on the cross, and will consummate at Christ's second coming at the end.  Why do we see the crucifixion as the pinnacle of history?  One pastor stated it like this, "The cross is the 'core of the gospel'.  Its bottom  line is sobering; if the account is true, it is history's hinge.  Period.  If not, it is history's hoax."
In other words, without that "hinge",  what are we waiting for?  Humans would still be helplessly and hopelessly dead in trespasses and sins.  How bout this scrip in Galatians 4:4a "But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son".  The line from Creation to final judgement centers on Christ.  Christ was the climax of history.  We are in the homestretch kids.  Time to kick it out, kick it up a notch, get it in gear.  The finish line is in sight.  How much better do you feel when you are running and pushing and dying, and then you hear that last lap call?  You get energy out of nowhere that you didn't know you had.  That is what we have as Christians.  We know there is an end game, and the goal is in sight.  We are not lost, aimlessly milling around.  
Knowing that Jesus will return in the future surely encourages all true believers in the present (1 Thess 4:18)



Saturday, February 7, 2009

Encouraging Quotes on Trials

"Sanctified afflictions are spiritual promotions." - Matthew Henry

"Trouble is only opportunity in work clothes." - Henry Kaiser

"God's wounds cure; sin's kisses kill." - William Gurnall

"Fiery trials make golden Christians." - William Dyer

"There is no education like adversity." - Benjamin Disraeli

"The staying power of our faith is neither demonstrated nor developed until it is tested by suffering." - DA Carson


what's up studs,
This last week I was sitting in my room talking with my wife right before we went to bed. This, by the way, is happening alot now that we are finding time to be with the Lord just as we get into our bed. We have grown together ever since our fast...thats beside the point and not what im writing about. Back to biz. While talking, my wife asked me..."why doesnt God just kill Satan right now." Heres what i make of it. The title of my article is "TOO MUCH CRED". Standing of course for too much credit. Who's getting too much cred? Satan...that's who. Heres what i mean. I want you to think about this with me. When something bad happens i know my first thought is "man, satan is wretched...he's rampant on the earth and screwing up everything." And he is, don't get me wrong, but...satan is not the main problem. The main problem is us. We as sinners are the reason for most of everything that goes wrong. Mans own evil desires are disgusting, and i get sick of having to ask for forgiveness so often myself. Satans 1000 year prison sentence in the abyss is a sign of that. Revelation 20:1-10:1And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. 2He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. 3He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time. So,let me ask you this. if Satan is the reason for all that is bad in the world then during those thousand years the world should have turned into a Garden of Eden. it would have been like Heaven on Earth. Did it? Heck no. people were still running around like a buncha idiots. some people are swayed by Satan but most are just giving in to their internal evilness. Heres the good news. We as Christians are given power over that inferior being called Satan. He has no power over us at all. When we signed on to play for the Team of Jesus Christ we washed our hands of that puke. Its the rest of the world that is in trouble. He is a master deceiver and his day will come. He will try to interfere with our lives and mess things up as much as possible but he cant touch us if we got Jesus Christ watchin our back. Clean it up human race...we are not worthy of His grace. THANK GOD FOR GOD.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


144,000.... anybody ever heard this significant number of Revelations before?  It is a very distinct number and obviously meant for a reason purpose.  Biblical scholars have been pouring over this number for eons.  So, I am not about to give you the final answer on it.  I just want all of us to be aware of it.  Let me know what you have heard about this number.  One thing that I do know is it is single-handedly responsible for Jehovah's Witnesses, and also pushed in the cults of Seventh Day Adventists and Mormonism.
If you have never even heard of this number and don't know any history of it check out Rev 14: 1-5.  
The spin that Jehovah's Witnesses put on this number started with a man named Charles Russell.  As a teenager he hated the church's views on hell and the Trinity and found them unreasonable.  His thought led him to Adventists who assured him of no eternal punishment and his faith in the Scriptures was restored (all be it, wrong).  By the time he was 18, he had his own bible studies going and was taking the Adventists set date 1874 for the end of the world and ran with it.  When that date came and went he pushed it back to 1914.  He kept setting new dates as they came and went all while stating that only 144,000 people on earth would make it to heaven.  Soon his congregation grew and he saw that he was going to have much more followers than 144K , so what was he to do?  He then announced that everyone who had become a JW before 1935 would go to heaven (the "little flock"), while everyone who became a JW after 35' would be among the "great crowd" who would not go to heaven but could look forward to living on Earth in a new paradise after Armageddon and the Millennium. 
I guess the point of this is that yes the bible is confusing at times and definitely hard to believe.  So, what some weak at heart or stubborn in power will do is take what they like about it and run with it.  Or, take what they don't understand and change it to help put their mind at ease.  I think we do that on a much lower scale, but we do it just the same.  No, we don't get a cult following but we do sometimes pick and choose parts of the bible that make us warm and fuzzy and forget to look at the dirty tough pages sometimes.  
I would really like to hear what, if any, things or theories that you have heard about this number before I rip off a super long post that most won't read through.  Again, I apologize for the delay and didn't mean to step on Jules' Tuesday toes.  Won't happen again.  



p.s. Congrats to Terry and his wife Tanner on the birth of their healthy perfect miracle today.  I won't take any more thunder than that from him if he wanted to bring it everyone in his own way on here.

Perverting the Gospel

Perverting the Gospel
Galatians 1:7 "...but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ."
The word pervert has such a negative connotation and to think that Paul used it in his letter to the Galatians in the first chapter says something. There are many ways that people pervert the gospel, it happens all the time, sadly it can come from various outlets. Family, friends, pastors, television, government, co-workers, employers, and it might even be you. The principalities and powers (Romans 8:38-39) that are talked about in Romans 8th chapter are deployed by the devil so that he can use one of his best weapons, the same weapon he used in Genesis to finalize the "fall of man". That weapon is turning black and white into gray. My bretheren there can be NO gray in our lives, we have to stomp it out and keep the black (sin/ Satan) on one side and the white (purity/ Jesus) on our side. Sure, gray is going to happen (more than likely during convo)but on those instances we have to fall back from legalism and step into love. If we don't have scripture that answers or supports our ideas than we can't act like we have the answer; being overcome with pride. We have to point things back to what we know (stick to what you know) and we know that Christ died and is risen and no doubt His word is living water and He is coming back. The biggest fault you/me can make today is to think that we aren't important, to think that we aren't a disciple of Jesus Christ our most high God (being that Jesus was God in the flesh). We are top notch prospects and it sounds a little like Stewart Smalley but "we are special" and it is ever so real, this group is powerful. We are still in our training phase I can't wait till God calls us to be deployed as a unit. Pray for that day, serving Him is the only thing that matters. Don't let lukewarm believers and non-believers put out your fire with some secular jargon about "If there was a loving God how come". We know He is real because of how we have felt after reading a scripture/post that speaks to your spirit. Let's continue to grow from drinking milk to eating meat, from crawling to walking, and from doubting to believing. If we have questions about things or doubts lets throw them out on the table and fellowship over them.

Father- forgive us for doubting You, forgive us for being sinfully foul one day and by Your side the next. Love us, fill us up with Your grace and mercy so that we can pour out on this world. Bless us with strength and health to use for Your glory, and shield us with Your word of truth. Amen

P.S. ERA's, batting AVG's, Salaries, and Sales etc... only last one year saving souls lasts an eternity.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Kill your Pride.

"There are six things the Lord hates- no, seven things he detests: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that kill the innocent, a heart that plots evil, feet that race to do wrong, a false witness who pours out lies, a person who sows discord in a family." -Proverbs 6:16-17 NLT

"For all that is in the world- the lust of the flesh, the lust of eyes, and the pride of life-is not of the Father but is of the world." -1 John 2:16 NKJV

"He says to himself, 'God has forgotten; he covers his face and never sees." -Psalm 10:11 NIV

*When God's presence is welcome, there is no room for pride because he makes us aware of our true selves.

"Pride leads to conflict; those who take advise are wise." -Proverbs 13:10

"Now John answered and said, 'master, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow with us.' But Jesus said to him, "Do not forbid him, for he who is not against us is on our side."-Luke 9:49 NKJV

Father shower us with humility today and make our hearts transparent to allow us to see what offends you. Lord let our walk be blameless and allow everyone to see you through our work. Pride is ugly and selfish, take it from us and fill us with your Holy Spirit! In Jesus name, amen.