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Three Things To Consider As Follower's of Christ As Florence Approaches.

As this storm continues to approach many are worried. Rightfully so. But as followers of Christ, we must take comfort in the Word of God. As followers of Jesus, I want to give you three things to consider as this storm approaches:

1. Be concerned. Not worried.
      Believe it or not, there is a difference. Worry is to torment yourself with cares, anxieties and disturbing thoughts (dictionary.com), while concern is is to take interest into the things that effect you, but does not interfere with one's peace of mind. With this hurricane approaching I would like to encourage you to be concerned but not worried.

   Jesus instructs His followers to not worry. He states in Matthew 6:25 "do not be anxious about your life." Why would Jesus give us such a statement?

1. Jesus instructs us that if the Father takes care of the birds of the air and lilies of the field, how much more so will the Father take care of us. (Matt. 6:26-28)

2. Jesus instructs us not to worry because it …

What To Do As The Storm Clouds Rise

Luke records a time when the disciples and Jesus were making their way across a lake in 8:22-25. At some point a "windstorm" come up and the boat was "filling with water" and they recognized that they "were in danger." (8:23) What did the disciples do? They woke up Jesus. When Jesus woke up He "rebuked the wind and the raging waves"; "there was a calm." (8:24)

    What Jesus said next is heart gripping. Jesus asked them, "Where is your faith?" These are men who had witnessed Christ heal a centurion's servant, raise a widow's son, restore a withered man's hand, heal a paralytic, cleanse a leper and do many other things before this "windstorm" come up. There is a "windstorm" approaching our home on the east coast, what do we do?

1. Call on Jesus.
    Prayer should be every Christians first reaction to such an event that we face in the coming days. Why? Jesus has all authority. Even has auth…

How George Müller has ministered to me this week.

I once heard John Piper say that everyone should have people in their life that minister's to them or mentor's them. Someone who is alive and someone who has passed that has lived the faith. A mentor does not necessarily mean you know them. You can read their material or listen to their podcast these days. I have been reading this autobiography on George Muller. If you have never read anything on him you should. He was born in September 27th, 1805 in Prussia. His life makes for a fantastic read and has ministered to me in many ways.

   One of those ways is his dedication to prayer and meditation on the Word of God. For the longest time, at least ten years, I have woke very early every morning to meditate on God's Word and pray. So nothing I read in regard to these was new, but it deepened my zeal and enthusiasm to stick to my so-called routine. Here is what Muller said in his journal:
"It often astonishes me that I did not see the importance of meditation upon Scri…

What is heaven like according to Jesus?

What is the kingdom of heaven like according to Jesus? My favorite parable of His is Matthew 13:44. Jesus states, "The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field."

   The first observation I make of Jesus' words is the word "treasure". He describes heaven like a treasure. Treasure is wealth, riches or something highly valuable and highly prized. Treasure is something we cherish. So, according to Jesus, heaven is a place to be highly valued, highly prized and highly cherished.

   How much should heaven be treasured by someone? How valuable is heaven? Jesus tell's us a story to help us understand how valuable heaven is. It is hard to wrap your mind around how valuable something is if you can't put your eye's on it. Luckily, Jesus has been there and He can tell us.

   Jesus tell's us a story about this man who found this treasure co…

Why Do People Sin?

Turn on the news, sin is abound. Sin is prevalent in society and the Church, it would see, is not absent. Recently the Catholic Church has been making headlines regarding the one thousand children sexually abused. Close to me outside the Catholic faith, a Protestant church made local headlines of children having been sexually abused by a Sunday School teacher. And it is nothing to turn on the news to find reports of murder, etc... Personally, I do not watch the news much any longer. It is depressing and I can find better things to do with my time. Why do people sin anyway? I would like to propose just a couple suggestions:

1. Their desire for the deeds of the flesh is more than their desire for God.
       Let's take it back to the first time sin entered the world - Genesis 3:6. If you know your Bible Adam and Eve come to mind. Genesis 3:6 states, "So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desir…

Two Blind Men & Jesus.

This morning I was reading through Matthew chapters 6-10. I read this account in Matthew 9:27-31 about two blind men following Jesus crying out to Him saying, "Have mercy on us, Son of David." They were asking to receive their sight. Jesus asked them this very important question that is still important today: "Do you believe that I am able to do this?" (9:28) A few things come to my mind when I observe and meditate on this passage.

1. Faith is a matter of believing in Jesus' ability.
   That question that Jesus posed to these two blind men is a question we all need to ask. Do I believe? Do I have confidence in Jesus? The word "believe" means confidence in something or someone without having absolute proof. With that in mind, understand what Jesus is asking these two blind men: "Do you have confidence that I have the ability to heel you without having any absolute proof?"
   What is being questioned is not who Jesus is but in Jesus' ab…

What does Jesus say about retaliation?

I was in my morning devotion time, reading through the Gospel of Matthew. As I was reading, these words caught my attention: "Do not resist the one who is evil." Wanted to share some thoughts from my time in God's Word.    Jesus cited Exodus 21:24 in Matthew 5:38 saying, "You have heard it was said, 'An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.' But then Jesus teaches, "Do not resist the one who is evil." See what Jesus our Lord teaches - Do not resist evil.   What does Jesus mean by the word "resist"? When Jesus says "do not resist", He is saying do not hold your ground, do not push back, do not withstand and do not oppose. Who are we not to "resist"? "The one who is evil." Jesus teaches us that we are not to hold our ground against those who are morally wrong or bad. We do not push back against those who are wicked. We do not oppose those who are harmful.   Instead Jesus teaches us in Matthew 5:39-42 th…

No Knowledge of God

If you would turn on the news chances are you will be bombarded by headlines dealing with murder, all kinds of violent acts, sexual misconduct and scandals. The news is depressing. How did we get here? I want to show you using a story from the Bible.

   There is a book in the Bible called Hosea. Hosea was a prophet and he was known as the 'death-bed prophet'. His story is particularly interesting. He was the last of the prophets before the northern kingdom fell to Assyria. He prophesied during a time that Israel was prosperous and that prosperity eventually lead to moral decay.
   Hosea was commanded by God to marry a "wife of whoredom" (Hosea 1:2), in order to serve as an example of Israel's unfaithfulness to God. Israel committed this adultery because they turned from a God who loved them to worshiping false gods. In essence it is Israel cheating on God with false gods.
   How did they get to that point? Hosea 4:1 writes, "There is no faithfulness or …

Living Life in The Spirit: Set Free From Condemnation

When the eyes of your heart were opened and you realized there was need in your life for God's salvation, and as you began your new life following Jesus one thing you were confronted with is this reality of tension between your desire to live for God and the temptation to sin. Do not take it from me though, take it from Paul. He wrote the book of Romans and in it we see a passage in chapter 7 where we read about this war that rages between his desire to do what is right but not having the ability to do so.    First in Romans 7:14-17 we see this tension Paul expresses that he does not do the good he wants to do but he does the very thing he hates (15). Then we come to Romans 7:18-20 and Paul observes this "desire to do what is is right, but not the ability to carry it out." Then we come to Romans 7:21-23 where Paul recognizes this is war that takes place between our "inner being" and "sin that dwells in my members", that is his flesh. So we see tha…

The Work of The Spirit: Glorifying Jesus.

Why is it to our advantage that Jesus be absent in the world and the Spirit be present? That is the question we have been answering in this blog for sometime now. Just for a recap, the Spirit is in the world to convict us in regards to sin, our disbelief in Jesus; righteousness, our unrighteousness in the sight of God; and judgment on Satan, because he misleads people from Jesus and blinds people from seeing the glory of God in Jesus (John 16:8-11). And the Spirit is in the world to guide us to the truth regarding the divinity of Jesus, mainly, that Jesus is the Son of God (John 16:12,13). Now lets look at a third reason: The Spirit is present in the world to glorify Jesus (John 16:14).

   Jesus continues in His teaching with the disciples by saying in John 16:14, "He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you." See the worlds 'He will glorify me'? Jesus is saying that that the Spirit of truth is coming into the world to glorify Christ. …