Saturday, February 22, 2014

A Call to Repentence

Dear Reader, 

You should know that I got up this morning to post Scripture -- just Scripture. However, as is my habit, I asked the Lord for guidance. This piece is the direct result of that guidance. I pray you recognize the Spirit in it.

But there were false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them -- bring swift destruction on themselves. Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute. In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping.

For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them into gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment; if He did not spare the ancient world when He brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others; if He condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men (for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard) -- if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment.--- 2 Pet 2:1-9

Since we know all these things are true, we should also be able to realize that God will not ignore our disobedience, either. For God holds these things against us:

1.  We have forsaken our God for the love of money. Our wealth is far more important to us than His will -- for we have removed Him from every place except for the most private. He is not allowed in our schools. He is not allowed in our government. He is not allowed in our business. He is not allowed in our public lives. Our focus is on money. (Remember: Have no other god before Me.)

2.  By inaction, agreement, or participation we have supported the slaughter of innocents. Although it was our job to demand protection for them, we looked the other way, and our land is now completely awash in their blood. (This grieves Him mightily.)

3. Instead of reforming society with His word, we have allowed society to reform His word. We have regarded our "image" as more important than His word, considering it far more important to be perceived as kind than to actually be kind. (It is not kind to agree with someone headed for hell. No, kindness would try to rescue them. Yet, we appease them.)

4. We have disrespected the cross -- behaving as though He should overlook our sins as trivial. Though we know that our Lord suffered and died because of our sin – for He had committed no sin, we disrespect His sacrifice by expecting our ongoing sins to be tolerated. (This He is very angry about.)

5. We have confused organizational institutions with the true church. God is not Methodist, Baptist, etc. We support, submit, and absorb their teachings like they speak for God. Yet, most are far more interested in the "business of the gospel". Literally, the gospel is a business for them. (If you doubt that, you obviously do not realize that the decision to ignore the children came from the very top and it was a money issue. Offended pew warmers do not tithe and government officials threatened their tax exempt status.)

6. We have lied to the world, saying that "God is love", while shrouding His holiness with darkness. God loves the obedient. He punishes the unrepentant. Those who know the truth are responsible for speaking it. Yet, many held their tongues.

7. We have rejected the call to repentance – preferring to blame all on the “end times”. Although we are near the return of Christ, using His coming to excuse our disobedience is inexcusable. Yet, it is what many have done. We should be on our knees, pleading for forgiveness. Instead, we assure ourselves that His coming will be a great blessing for us – who remain in disobedience. (It’s like a dog taking food from the table and then standing around expecting to be praised. He will come, but with a rod in His hand.)

Yes, I asked God before saying these things. Yes, I sought Him as I wrote. Truth is these are the very things He has been saying to me for years. No, God has not stopped speaking to us. (May He make this truth broadly apparent, even to those who have slandered Him so.) The devil does not call us to save the children. No, God is the One who cares for the children and in His call to me these things were revealed – starting with the fact that churches had their tax exempt status threatened regarding abortion. It was impossible for me to have known this. Yet, I did, because He told me. Believe or do not, either way, I have told you. Therefore, you are responsible before Him.

I call you to repentance, Brothers and Sisters. This day do not turn your face away from the need. Do not pretend you have no guilt. God does not lose battles. IF we had stood on His promises, IF we had been obedient, IF we had held to the truth, IF we had not submitted to the god of wealth; then we would not be the people looking at the destruction of their nation. Do you not know that the church of Laodicea suffered because they chose to be lukewarm? Indeed, we have chosen to be punished by rejecting the word God has given us.

“Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with Me. – Rev 3:19-20

This day let us earnestly repent with great mourning. Let us recognize His word to us, and not reject it. Let us turn away from pursuing the wealth of the flesh for the wealth of His Spirit, praising Him even in our sorrow. Let us plead together for mercy, for there is a great difference between “meanness” and holiness.

Our God is not mean. He is not cruel or indifferent. No, our God is holy. Our sin offends Him deeply. He cannot ignore it. He cannot excuse it. We must be cleansed of it. He longs to gather us to Him in loving embrace, but we are covered in the “filth” of sin. We are not cleansed of it by claiming to be His, but only when we turn away from our sin and embrace His cleansing sovereignity over our entire existence.

Gather with me, Brother and Sisters, gather and repent. If we are sincere, He will be found faithful to forgive and restore us. Then the Lord’s return will be a blessing to us -- IF we repent.


Father God, I lift up this word You have given us this morning. I plead with You to open eyes and hearts to its truth. I lay at Your feet the forthcoming harvest and ask that You glorify Yourself with the praise of all heaven and earth. Let it be known, Father, that it is You speaking through me, that I do not speak of my own desires – for Father, the people desire the truth, but they have been lied to. They do not know whom to believe. Have mercy, dear Father. Have mercy! Reveal the truth because of who You are. Do not let these lies stand! Lead us to repentance, dear Father. Do not leave us to our own devices, Father, for we are completely lost without You. Have mercy, Father. Have mercy! I ask all these things in Yeshua’s precious name, and thank You, Father, for hearing my pleas, amen and amen.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The Gentleness of Paul?

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power. What do you prefer? Shall I come to you with a whip, or in love and with a gentle spirit? – 1 Cor 4:20-21

In today’s church, Paul would be severely admonished for speaking to church members so clearly. They were misbehaving, but to threaten them so today would be completely unacceptable. Still, Paul doesn’t even pretend to coddle them. Neither does He placate them. No, like a father intent on raising well-disciplined children, he orders them to straighten up! Yet, few would deny that Paul clearly loved all those he taught selflessly.

Even though I am not physically present, I am with you in spirit. And I have already passed judgment on the one who did this, just as if I were present. When you are assembled in the name of our Lord Yeshua and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Yeshua is present, hand this man over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord. – 1 Cor 5:3-5

Here he is a few verses later insisting that they give one of their members over for Satan to torment! He doesn’t ask them to consider it. He doesn’t suggest it. No, he tells them to get it done.

But I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat. – 1 Cor 5:11

Hmmmm. I think if Paul were here, we’d have a lot of empty churches.

What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked man from among you.” – 1 Cor 12-13

Here’s the thing, folks. When we treat the disobedient as brothers and sisters in good standing, we appear to approve of that disobedience. Worse, we imply that disobedience is not an issue. It is no wonder that some of the lost view the professing saved as arrogant hypocrites. We have not kept the division clear enough for them to see one. We need to get our priorities right.

Hearing that Yeshua had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the Law, tested Him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in all the Law?”

Yeshua replied, “’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two.” – Mat 22:34-40

God first. We must love Him first and foremost, considering Him above all else. It is not wrong to stand up against those who malign His name or His word. He is our God. It is only right that we should be outspoken about the truth He has given us, and insist on it among the brethren. True, some will think us harsh, but I believe Paul would definitely approve.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

This morning's Praise and Prayer:

In that day you will say: "I will praise You, O Lord.
Although You were angry with me, Your anger has turned away
and You have comforted me.
Surely God is my salvation;
I will trust and not be afraid.
The Lord, the Lord, is my strength and my song;
He has become my salvation.

In that day you will say: "Give thanks to the Lord,
call on His name;
make known to the nations what He has done,
and proclaim that His name is exalted.
Sing to the Lord, for He has done glorious things;
let this be known to all the world.
Shout aloud and sing for joy, people of Zion,
for great is the Holy One of Israel among you. -- Isa 12

Thank You, Lord, thank You for being who You are -- our most wonderful, most awesome, most worthy Lord.
You do not wonder at who You are nor keep Yourself from us.
You do not work to confuse those who seek You in earnest, rather tell us plainly who You are.
You, who have made the sun, the moon, and the stars do not show Yourself to be one God to us and another to others.
No. You would not tell us to serve only You, the God of the Bible, and then tell others to serve only you, as a god of other names.

How foolish man is to think he could devise such a plan to subvert Your will!
He thinks he will twist Your words just enough to suit his plan, but You know his heart.
Open his eyes, Father, convict his spirit. Reveal to him Your infinite wisdom.
Is not his wisdom the same as the original, thinking ourselves as worthy as You --
that we can change what You have said to what we want to hear, and expect You to honor it!
How dark the heart that devises such schemes! Does it not know that Your plans cannot be changed by man?

Reveal Yourself, Father, vindicate Yourself! Let not this atrocity stand! 
You are my heavenly Father. How can I not be offended that man would slight You so?
You who are so completely, magnificent and wholly satisfying to my soul are enthroned in heaven! 
Surely You are even more offended for You are the great I AM!

Surely those who devised this scheme should come to know that there is indeed reason to fear You,
and with that fear, give You the respect You are due.
But do not punish this man, Father, with death. Rather, I plead with you to open his eyes and heart.
For I would rather consider him a brother than let the devil celebrate over even his lost soul.
To Thy glory I ask it in Yeshua's beloved name, amen and amen!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Not Forgetting to Praise

by Betty Baker Bailey

Even in the valley we can find ourselves smiling as we contemplate our awesome God. His incredible power, His merciful love, His all-knowing wisdom – all serve to comfort us in the midst of the storm. We know that He can keep us. No matter how great the tempest, it cannot best Him. With a word He can send it away, dissipate it into thin air, or rebuke it to the depths. In fact, there is nothing He is not the Master of.

In a time of judgment it is easy to think there is nothing to smile about, but the truth is that it is always time to praise God. And praising God just makes us smile. I don’t know about you, but I can’t help it. In the middle of my weepy, pleading -- if I stop to think about how magnificent He is, I soon find myself smiling from ear to ear. He’s just that totally, awesome. Then I have to tell Him, “You know, Father, that I love You and that I am glad – despite everything – that You are who You are.” Why?

To me God is the ultimate authority, the best of the best, the greatest of the great. His superiority to us is so extreme that we cannot even begin to express it. He knows absolutely everything. Powerful enough to set planets to spinning, His thoughts create from nothing. Everything that is came to be at His command. I am not just in awe of Him; I am completely captivated by Him.

So, I look at the judgment He is about to unleash on us and I think, “Well, we could run, but there isn’t any place to hide. We could argue, but He’s never wrong.” So, instead I plead with Him, and then I praise Him. Who knows, perhaps He’ll have mercy on us. Whether He does or not, He deserves to be praised. He deserves to have all the angels and all of us worship Him with all our hearts, and all our souls, and all our minds. He’s just that kind of God, deserving.

As a young girl I was privileged to be part of a children’s choir. To this day I sing the old hymns as I go through the day. Even at night, when I’m deep in prayer, I’ll whisper them to Him. How can I not? What a wonderful God we serve! Today’s song is: When the Roll is Called up Yonder. How I love every word! How they comfort my soul! Why don’t you sing with me? It’ll only take a minute, but the comfort cannot be beat.

When the Roll is Called up Yonder
by James M. Black

When the trumpet of the Lord shall sound and time shall be no more,
And the morning breaks eternal, bright and fair;
When the saved of earth are gathered over on the other shore,
And the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there.

When the roll is called up yonder, When the roll is called up yonder,
When the roll is called up yonder, When the roll is called up yonder,
When the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there.

On that bright and cloudless morning when the dead in Christ shall rise,
And the glory of His resurrection share;
When His chosen ones shall gather to their home beyond the skies,
And the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there.

When the roll is called up yonder, When the roll is called up yonder,
When the roll is called up yonder, When the roll is called up yonder,
When the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there.

Let us labor for the Master from the dawn till setting sun,
Let us talk of all His wondrous love and care;
Then when all of life is over and our work on earth is done.
And the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there.

When the roll is called up yonder, When the roll is called up yonder,
When the roll is called up yonder, When the roll is called up yonder,
When the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there.

Blessing Brothers and Sisters. May God pour out His Spirit in your hearts to His glory.

God’s peace.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Did Jeremiah Love His People?

by Betty Baker Bailey

“Among My people are wicked men who lie in wait like men who snare birds, and like those who set traps to catch men. Like cages full of birds, their houses are full of deceit; they have become rich and powerful and have grown fat and sleek. Their evil deeds have no limit; they do not plead the case of the fatherless to win it, they do not defend the rights of the poor. Should I not punish them for this?” declares the Lord. “Should I not avenge Myself on such a nation as this?”

“A horrible and shocking thing has happened in the land; the prophets prophesy lies, the priests rule by their own authority, and My people love it this way”– Jer 5:26-31

Surely Jeremiah was considered unloving, unkind, and abusive by his people. Yet, it is not Jeremiah speaking here, but God. Jeremiah is just sharing, as ordered, what he was told.

“Announce this to the house of Jacob and proclaim it in Judah: Hear this, you foolish and senseless people, who have eyes but do not see, who have ears but do not hear: Should you not fear Me?” declares the Lord. “Should you not tremble in My presence?” – Jer 5:20-22

God does not change. Yet, today we believe in our hearts that He most definitely has, because we tell ourselves He no longer punishes the guilty. I think Ananias and Sapphira would profusely disagree (Act 5:1-11).

Ananias and Sapphira attempted to lie to the Holy Spirit and were instantly killed for their disrespect. It is important to understand that Peter did not kill these two. No, Peter did not lay a hand on them. This was divine judgment, carried out in the New Testament church. So, let us not fool ourselves any longer about who God is. He is holy. He does love us, enough to send His only Son to rescue us. But, He will not be mocked.

Jeremiah spoke to a hard-hearted people who loved their evil ways. To be sure there were among them some who loved the Lord. (Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were youths when the Israelites were taken into captivity.) But much of the land was deeply involved in disobedience, and the approval of disobedience. Sound familiar? It should.

This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: “Stand at the gate of the Lord’s house and there proclaim this message:

“’Hear the word of the Lord, all you people of Judah who come through these gates to worship the Lord. This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel says: Reform your ways and your actions and I will let you live in this place. Do not trust in deceptive words and say, ‘This is the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord!’ IF you really change your ways and your actions and deal with each other justly, if you do not oppress the alien, the fatherless or the widow and do not shed innocent blood in this place, and if you do not follow other gods to your own harm, THEN I will let you live in this place, in the land I gave your forefathers forever and ever. But look you ARE trusting in deceptive words that are worthless.” – Jer 7:1-8

The Israelites thought they were safe because they believed they had God’s protection as His chosen people. It wasn’t just any temple that they worshiped in. It was His. Nor were their priests just any priests, but ones set apart to God. However, the point of this admonition is that God no longer inhabited the temple. Their love of other gods and disobedience had caused Him to abandon it long before. So, they were trusting in a security their own sins had stripped them of.

Like many churches today, the temple had become a social gathering place, having only the outward appearance of being His. The priests and prophets were saying, “Peace, peace! God is not mad at you.” (Paraphrased) But God was assuring Jeremiah that He was so angry that He was going to punish them severely.

Today we easily look back on Jeremiah and see him for the caring, loving individual he was. We can also see how blind and misguided his detractors were. We know that Jeremiah loved his people, because we know they were punished. At the time though, the people did not want to hear it. He was trying to get them out of the line of fire, but they despised him for the effort.

What we don’t seem to understand is that servants like Jeremiah always appear unloving to the people he (or she) is sent to witness to. It’s the nature of the call. We are tasked with telling you what you do not want to hear, let alone believe. So while the lie is deadly it is generally more acceptable than the truth.

Jeremiah spoke repeatedly against the leaders of his day. I can just hear the people coming to their defense: “You just don’t love us. You’re not the one. You don’t know what you’re talking about. You are not acting in love!” But, you know what, Jeremiah was right. God was speaking to him. He wasn’t ‘making it up’ nor was he speaking out of anger. He had a real and relevant message for the times. The people resented hearing it, but it was the correct message for the time.

In reality it wasn’t that Jeremiah did not love his people; but rather, that they did not love him. He put himself at risk to tell them the truth. Of course, God was his protector, but that doesn’t mean Jeremiah did not feel the weight of their anger. He most certainly did. He was well aware that they did not want to hear it, but he told them anyway.

Jeremiah’s time and ministry are profoundly relevant to our time. As God promised, I relate to him on a very real level. Like him, I have experienced resentment, abuse, etc. Like him people often consider me unloving or unkind. Some of today’s leaders even admonish their followers to ignore me as “misguided or uninformed” -- though, hopefully, none that have admitted to agreeing with me privately.

The thing is, like Jeremiah, I know I am right. I know we are judgment. I know God is angry. And, like Jeremiah, I can see the coming punishment. Call me crazy, but I don’t believe a loving person would keep something like this to themselves. I find it impossible to stand by while people behave like lemmings – dashing off the cliff because their leaders insist it is the way to go.

Jeremiah loved his people. So do I. He stood against the elite of his day. So do I. Therefore, despite your claims of my unworthiness, unloving heart, etc.; I will continue to share what God is showing me until the very last one of you plummets off that cliff to oblivion. Along the way I will continue to weep for you. Whether you realize it or not, this has never been about making you feel bad or your leaders appear foolish. No, this is about what God has made broadly apparent to me and my obligation to be obedient to Him. After all, what pleases God is what really matters whether it pleases us or not.

God’s peace.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

FYI -- A Few Relevant Facts

Just for the record the things posted on this blog, unless otherwise noted, are things I have written personally. Some are things I've written over the years, especially the poetry/songs. In contrast, most of the prose is recent.

I do not write to please myself or satisfy some need for attention. Obviously, I do not write to tickle ears. I write because I am a called Witness. It is my job to share what He tells me.

While many are writing for fame or fortune, my goal is to reach those who can be reached with the truth that God has made broadly apparent to me. Some think me too harsh, but we live in a time of judgment. Many of our spiritual leaders know this to be true -- yes, I've had more than one admit this to me privately -- but they aren't willing to say so publicly. I, on the other hand, have witnessed God's judgment and do not want your blood on my hands.

No, I would rather be despised than guilty of such an atrocity. So, when you copy from my posts, do add my name. Not so that I can make a name; but rather, in order that others may come and feast on the rest of the truth shared here.

God's peace.

Another Poem, "Mirage"

by Betty Baker Bailey

Deep in my heart there is an ache
That cuts clear to the bone
It comes from hearing children cry
While dying all alone.

I cannot stop the tears that flow.
Nor soothe my wounded heart.
I feel the loss of every one
Gone missing since the start.

They’ll never run or skip or jump.
They’ll never see the sea.
They just fill up the city dump
And bring me to my knees.

These lives that some consider not
To me are treasures lost.
For who can know what one is worth
When in the can one's tossed.

Oh, how I long to hold each one
In motherly embrace;
To gently nurture and caress;
What some consider waste.

Some have said this makes me mean –
To want the children saved.
I ask them to discern between
The caring and depraved.

For those who have the bloody hand
That does the deadly deed,
They are the ones who strike the blow
Based purely upon greed.

It is not wrong to love the child
Nor for its life to plead.
But wrong it is to take such lives
And on their deaths to feed.

To speak, perchance to reach a heart
Bent upon destruction
Is such a noble, worthy cause
As to deserve sanction.

Yet, lies abound ‘bout what we do;
How deeply goes our wound.
For if the truth was ever out
Their profit would be doomed.

The little ones within the womb
Are pawns amidst their game,
Of pow’r and wealth and deadly “health”;
Of ghoulish, fiendish fame.