Sunday, June 29, 2014

This Morning's Word

I'm always asking the Lord, "What about . . ." this or that. Typically, He answers by putting me in Scripture that is too accurate to be coincidence. Lately, I've been querying Him regarding those who claim the Cross invalidated their responsibility to take up the children's case.

"For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain terrifying expectation of judgment, and the fury of a fire which will consume the adversaries. Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace?

For we know Him who has said, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay." And again, "The Lord will judge His people." It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God. -- Heb 10:26-31

The law of Moses tells us that God holds us accountable for the lives of our fellowman (Gen 9:5), that we are to take action to prevent the shedding of innocent blood (Deu 19:10), that He considers guilty those who ignore the shedding of innocent blood (Exo 23:7), and that failure to hate bloodshed brings bloodshed to our own doors (Eze 35:6). Add this in Hebrews and those who do not regard the children's lives should be able to recognize the judgment at our door as witness to His unchangeable character.

He hated child sacrifice in the Old Testament and punished the Israelites for it. He hates it now. Please, Brother and Sister, take up their case. Plead for their precious lives. Today, turn back before it is too late.

God's peace.


Tuesday, June 24, 2014

This Convenient Gospel

Last week I journeyed once to the nearby abortuary to plead for the lives of helpless little children. While there I encountered a man who began to viciously berate and abuse me. His language was foul, his demeanor threatening. Yet, he would stop every so often as if to invite me up to speak to him, implying he both needed and wanted assistance.

Supposedly his child died in the womb and they had come to have it removed. I say supposedly because mothers and fathers routinely lie about what motivates them to an abortuary. We know this because many have confessed to lying after experiencing a change of heart. Nonetheless, upon hearing of the man’s misfortune I offered my heartfelt sympathy and explained that we were still obligated to God to speak up for the children being slaughtered. At which point, I also offered him a beautiful blanket for his child’s burial as a token of our regard for his loss.

His primary argument was that we absolutely had no right, and that no one – no matter how needy -- who came to an abortuary deserved to be helped anyway. At which point, I began to explain that our Lord’s sacrifice on the cross obligated us to love our brothers and sisters enough to be there in His stead. Further, I explained that we truly loved him, too, and were deeply sorry for his loss.

After considering all this, he suddenly confided that he, too, was a Christian, and it was his Christianity that caused him to be absolutely humiliated by our efforts. Then he began to threaten me, saying that if we (clearly meaning me) did not cease, he would file a complaint against me and see me arrested. Understand, all this occurred while he cursed and abused me verbally with his every breath.

Now, I ask you. Where do these “Christians” come from who believe such behavior is either pleasing to God or acceptable to Him? The sad thing is that many do come from a church environment – one that is so open to whatever feels right that all these things are considered appropriate.

Clearly, the man was hurting. He had lost his child and was deeply wounded by that loss. If he were a singular example, we might even say that his sorrow just went too deep. Unfortunately, this is not so. For every week we see many enter the abortuary with the sign of the cross, the sign of the fish, a Bible on the dashboard, or a Christian bumper sticker on the back! These men and women flash vulgar signs at us, curse us vehemently, threaten us . . . even aim their vehicles at us.

I would have put my arms around this man and wept with him, but he would have preferred to see me in chains. I would have prayed with him for healing and deliverance. Yes, I prayed for him anyway, but he did not get to feel that compassion nor experience that motherly embrace. He was too angry, too blind, and far too uneducated in the ways of God.

Christianity is not just a word. It is a conversion that affects us completely. I saw no such evidence in this poor man. In fact, before he finished his tirade, he had soundly cursed even the Lord. Nor do we see evidence of the Lord in those who come with their tokens of Christianity; but rather, we see the love of self – the love of convenience – the love of the lie.

It is inconvenient for me to go to plead for the lives of the children. It is hard to make the blankets I give away. It is heartbreaking to know that the children are being slaughtered as we stand outside pleading with their parents. But Christianity – true Christianity is not convenient. It requires sacrifice from us. It required the ultimate sacrifice from Him. Why now do so many think themselves so much better that they should not be inconvenienced even in the slightest? I tell you the truth, it is because so many have not been transformed – that is to say, they are only Christian in their minds, because their deeds speak clearly of an allegiance that is decidedly not heavenly.

God’s peace,

How Great is My Fear of You, Heavenly Father!

Why, Lord, do the people not fear You? Why, Lord, do they not tremble at their own disobedience? Surely You are righteously angry, for You suffered and died that we might be forgiven -- not that we might live lives of sin.

Father, I see You. I fear You. I tremble and weep for Your wrath is very great. You look upon our lukewarm hearts with contempt and are reviled at our disregard. I see Your anger, Your disappointment, and I am broken by it.

Father, what  can I do? I am but a little one. The nation does not see that I know of Your heart. They do not comprehend that You have revealed Yourself to one so insignificant. Not even John, who came to prepare a way for the Lord, could reach those who were not given to Him:

To this John replied, "A man can receive only what is give him from heaven." -- Joh 3:27

What am I to do? I drown myself in sorrow and weep until I am weak. I rush to do Your bidding; pleading and begging, speaking and sharing what You have said. Yet, far too many turn a deaf ear and spurn Your rebuke.

You said I would be like Jeremiah, speaking to a people who would not hear. You said we would be judged for preferring our wealth to You. Surely, that judgment is upon us. How we have wearied You! Again and again, You point me to these Scriptures!

You have wearied the Lord with your words.

"How have we wearied Him?" you ask.

By saying, "All who do evil are good in the eyes of the Lord, and He is pleased with them" or "Where is the God of justice?"

"See, I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before Me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to His temple; the messenger of the covenant, who you desire, will come," sa
ys the Lord Almighty.

But who can endure the day of His coming? Who can stand when He appears? For He will be like a refiner's fire or a launderer's soap. He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; He will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the Lord will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness, and the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will be acceptable to the Lord, as in the days gone by, as in former years.

"So, I will come near to you for judgment. I will be quick to testify against sorcerers, adulterers and perjurers, against those who defraud the laborers of their wages, who oppress the widows and the fatherless, and deprive aliens of justice, but do not fear ME," says the Lord Almighty.
-- Mal 2:17-3:5

Because we call the slaughter of innocents a "necessary" evil, we are guilty before You. Because we ignore the truth of Your word, we are guilty. Because we love the liar more than those who tell us the truth, we are guilty. Because we prefer to be entertained more than to be rightly instructed or corrected, we are guilty.

How my heart aches for the children of a nation that is so willfully blind! How I mourn the man of God that has abandoned the pulpit for fame and fortune! How I weep for the mothers who have killed their precious babies! Like Jeremiah, there is no end to my anguish over this arrogant, undisciplined nation! Father, what can I do!

Will You give me some who turn back before it is too late? Will You heed my tears and profit Your word? Will You not have mercy because of Who You are? Have we gone too far? Is it just too late? Father, yet have mercy for there are others like me who seek Your will. I am not alone in pursuit of Your deliverance. I am not alone in the desire to return.

Turn us back, Father, but do not completely destroy us. Rebuke us, Father, but do not remove us completely. Have mercy, Father, not because we deserve -- for surely we do not; but rather, have mercy, dear Father, because we are but dust and You the whirlwind of our destruction. Have mercy for You are just too much for us and we are completely -- utterly at Your mercy. I plead with You, Father. I beg at Your feet. Hear my pleas. Respond to my requests. Do not turn aside. Do not abandon us to our guilt.

In Yeshuah's precious name, amen and amen.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Today's the Day

Off to the abortuary again this morning with a pink blanket on one shoulder and a blue on the other. I'll be pleading for the children's lives, rebuking the evil, offering help for mothers, and speaking the truth of Scripture. God is not silent as so many believe on the shedding of innocent blood; but rather, warns us strongly to stand against us.

"Do this so that innocent blood will not be shed in your land . . . so that you will not be guilty of bloodshed." -- Deu 19:10

" . . . And from each man, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of his fellowman." -- Gen 9:5

"They sacrificed their sons and daughters to demons. They shed innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan, and the land was desecrated by their blood." -- Psa 106-37-38

Deuteronomy tells we don't have to kill to be guilty. Genesis tells us we are responsible for lives of those around us and Psalms tells us that our land is ruined by the blood of innocents. Why does the church still think it's innocent? Because once we determine not to know, He will let our thinking become deluded. Not only is God not pleased with us, He is angry enough to give us rulers to have no regard for us whatsoever.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Money Problems?

Then the word of the Lord came through the prophet Haggai: “Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains in ruin?”

Now this is what the Lord Almighty says: “Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.” – Hag 1:3-6

Sound familiar? Many work sixty hour weeks, but can’t pay their bills. Many are homeless. Many face an empty cupboard. Businesses fail all around us. And it seems like every week, we are told we must find more and more money for our leaders to spend. Our financial problems are indeed serious; but, like ancient Israel, we do not recognize that they are the product of a lack of regard for the things of God.

The ancient Israelites had been told to rebuild the temple of the Lord, but they wanted to build homes for themselves and fix their financial problems first. So, work had stopped on the temple. Here God tells them, through Haggai, that their financial problems were actually the result of not putting Him first.

Today, we see our problems largely as caused by greedy or inept rulers. What we need to recognize is that greedy or inept rulers are a result of wrong priorities. We are busily trying to protect our “American Dream” lifestyles. What we need to do is get busy about putting God first in our lives.

Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is NO authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. – Rom 13:1

The Israelites had returned from captivity in Babylon. Their nation was in ruins, but they had been overrun because they had allowed their hearts to love other gods. They had turned from the truth of God’s word to the lies of the devil. They had put the God of their fathers – the One who had delivered them from Egypt –on par with idols and forsaken the things of His heart. And God was angry.

Fear the Lord your God, serve Him only and take your oaths in His name. Do not follow other gods, the gods of the peoples around you; for the Lord your God, who is among you, is a jealous God and His anger will burn against you, and He will destroy you from the face of the land. – Deu 6:13-15

Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. – Gal 6:7

God is not mocked. He didn’t tolerate their disobedience, and He isn’t tolerating ours. They sowed disobedience – sacrificing their children to idols, worshipping other gods, failing to hold to the truth of His word -- and reaped destruction. We have allowed in their footsteps like they were leading us to mountains of gold, and we are seeing His disapproval in every area of our lives.

Ancient Israel returned to rebuilding the temple and God returned to blessing them. That’s how it works. We put Him first and He takes care of everything else.

Want decent rulers? Make God the authority in your life. His word should be our law. We should take it just that seriously. It isn’t that He hasn’t given us directions; but rather, that we are not following them.

And now, O Israel, what does the Lord your God ask of you but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways, to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to observe the Lord’s commands and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good? – Deu 10:12-13

Want to be blessed? End child sacrifice. God does NOT approve of the shedding of innocent blood. Our nation is literally drowning in it.

Do this so that innocent blood will not be shed in your land, which the Lord your God is giving you as your inheritance, and so that you will not be guilty of bloodshed. – Deu 19:10

We are guilty. He told us we would be if we did not do something to stop it. For the most part, we have looked the other way, and we are reaping the fruit of our disregard.

We need to stop tolerating evil and speak up for the things of God. We need to go out and witness to the lost. We need to demand that abortion be outlawed. We need to stop putting our comfort ahead of the things of His heart. In ancient Israel they were to show their respect for Him by rebuilding His temple first. In this nation, we need to show our respect by abandoning our ungodly ways.

Until we stop having wrong priorities, we are going to be punished. God is no respecter of persons. We are just as guilty as ancient Israel. We had a blessed land while God was the God of our hearts. Returning to those blessings requires a returning to Him. It’s just that simple. Don’t complain about an empty bank account. Start worshipping and returning to Him. He’s not broke, but He isn’t going to bless us until we get our priorities inline with His will.

God’s peace.