The Bible tells us that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. All that he made was good. God then formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul (Genesis 2:6). God gave man the commandment that he could eat of every tree in the garden except the tree of knowledge of good an evil. The Lord God then said, "it is not good that man should be alone: I will make him an help meet for him (Genesis 2:18).
The scriptures go on tell us that the serpent deceived the woman. The man followed suit and did not obey what God told him. Sin has now entered the world that was perfect. The serpent beguiled Eve, but no one made Adam eat of the forbidden fruit. He did it on his own. When Eve gave it to him, he could have said no.
Many times people blame others for their sins. No one can make a person sin.
After Adam and Eve were put out of the garden, they had two children, Cain and Abel. The Bible says, in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.
Scripture goes on to tell us that Cain killed his brother Abel. He lured him into one of his fields and killed him. When God asked him about it, he lied. Sin is now found in one of the sons of Adam and Eve. How did it get there? There were only four people in the earth this time and three of them sinned against God.
All it takes is one person. This text also teaches us that is important what is in the parents. This scripture teaches us that sin nature is passed down. The Bible backs it up by saying, We all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. All of mankind needs the redeeming work of Christ in their life to the saving of their soul!! Matters not the race, creed or color, we all have sinned!! You are born a sinner needing to be redeemed.
Thank the Lord for the redeeming work of Christ on the cross. In Luke 24:47, Jesus said, "And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem."
As by one sin entered into the world, by one sin can be remitted. Romans 5:17 says it best, "For if by one man's offense death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ."
Have you repented of your sins? Time is running out.
The Bible study lesson on last night was a great reminder that God sees everything. God is omniscient (He has total knowledge; he knows everything). He sees everything that His people go through. He sees the devil and his imps trying to make the people of God turn away from God. He sees the devil seeking whom he may devour. He sees the wicked setting traps and snares for the Saints. God sees the wicked plotting against the just. God sees every struggle, every pain. Nothing is hidden from God (Hebrews 4:13).
The scripture text was I Kings 21:1-7;17-20. Ahab wanted to buy Naboth's vineyard, which was Naboth's inheritance. When Naboth refused to sell, Ahab went home, pounting (verse 4). Ahab's wife, Jezebel, stepped in and said "I will give thee the vineyard of Naboth the Jezereelite. She proceeded to have false letters written and placed Ahab's signature on them. The letters contained falsehoods against Naboth. He was falsely accused of blasphemy. As a result, Naboth was led out of the city and stoned to death.
Ahab, the king of Israel at the time, did nothing to stop an innocent man from being killed. A good man was killed behind a lie. But God saw what was done. God called for the prophet Elijah to go and seek Ahab out and speak a word to him. God knew exactly where Ahab was (verse 18). God told Elijah what to say (verse 19).
When Ahab heard the judgment of God against him, he tore his clothes, humbled himself, put sackcloth on, fasted (verse 27). Because of this, God spoke to Elijah and told him to tell Ahab, "Seest thou how Ahab humbleth himself before me? because he humbled himself before me, I will not bring the evil IN HIS DAY; but in HIS SON'S DAYS WILL I BRING THE EVIL UPON HIS HOUSE."- verse 29.
Jezebel lost her life (II Kings 9:33). Ahab was killed in battle (I Kings 22:1-38 All of those in the house of Ahab, including his 70 sons, was killed too (II Kings 9:11; II Kings 10:7). The heads of his sons were cut off and placed in baskets.
God sees everything. God is the avenger of the righteous. If God does not execute judgment quickly does not mean he has forgotten. Sometimes it appears as if the wicked are winning, but they are not. In God's own time He will take care of the wicked.
Several verses in Psalms 37 lets it be known that the wicked shall not prevail in the end. So fret not thyself because of evildoers (verse 1). The wicked shall soon be cut down (verse 2). Evildoers shall be cut off (verse 9). The wicked shall perish (verse 20). Transgressors shall be destroyed together (verse 38).
This lesson is also a reminder of why the Gospel must be preached. Why sin must be preached against and called out. God does not forget. The wages of sin is death.
Praise the Lord. The Lord is good. A very present help in trouble.
Times are changing. At this very hour there is unrest in America. Unrest to the point of individuals not conducting themselves lawfully. Damaging property that belongs to someone else is not ok. How is looting going to change anything? How is name calling and cursing going to change anything?
What people need to realize is that time is coming to a close. There is not enough protesting that can change what is about to take place. The word of God has already told us that there will be much pain and destruction as the coming of the Lord comes near.
In the book of Matthew chapter 24 the disciples asked Jesus what would the sign of his coming and ending the world. Jesus answered: "And said unto them, take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows." Matthew 24:3-8
Notice the Bible says, beginning of sorrows. How many are prepared for the sorrows that is about to come on the land? Not many.
What is happening in our country has brought and is bringing tears. With the pandemic changing the normal flow of life, many have been affected and hurt. Many are without jobs and in need of care. And this is just the beginning.
Some would ask, 'what is the answer?' The answer is Jesus Christ.
Until the hearts of men change, there will always be hatred and violence. Cain killed his brother for no reason, except jealously and hatred of him (Genesis 4:1-8). The first brother on brother crime, but not the last.
Until the heart changes, there is no change. Mark 7:20-23 says, "And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man. For from withing, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thought, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, and evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness; All these evil things come from withing, and defile the man."
Men, women everywhere need to repent so the Lord Jesus Christ can do a work in their heart. The good new"of the Bible is Jesus can change a heart. Once the old is repented of, the new can come in.
For what shall it profit a man if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Eternity is a long time.
I will bless the Lord at all times. His praise shall continually be in my mouth. This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.
As time comes to a close my thoughts and heart are constantly on the things of the Lord, examining myself to see if I am still in the faith. Examining the ministry to see if it is still in line with the teachings of scripture.
Fear has been unleashed on this country and people are scared of 'the thing' and dying. Lives have been turned upside down because of fear. A lot of what is being spread by media is not true but it feeds the fear.
I admonish the people of God to have faith in what they say they believe as relates to Jesus Christ, the Bible and the power of God. The Bible says "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." II Timothy 1:7. I John 4:18 says fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
The Born again believer is going to have to live the faith. The sign of the times is letting it be known that the end of time is near. And without faith it is impossible to please God. I wonder what people believe this means. One can not have fear and faith at the same time. As time comes to a close the faith of the blood bought believer will be tested. You have to pass the test(s).
Mankind is flesh and blood. Mankind needs fresh air. Mankind needs to be around other people. Mankind was not made to be isolated. Mankind needs to breath air from the open atmosphere and not keep rebreathing his own stale air. Wearing a mask is not healthy. God did not make mankind to wear a mask. Help Lord.
My prayer is that those that are blood bought will have faith in God. Sometimes one can not explain what they believe. It has to be lived and demonstrated.
The book of Matthew chapter 24 speaks to the things that will happen as times comes to an end. Pestilences is one of them.
Repent and get saved before it is everlasting too late.
I will bless the Lord at all times. His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
Praise the Lord!! The Lord is still good. He is still a very present help in trouble.
This virus has everything in turmoil. It is time to seek the Lord. Death is everywhere. Death is the vehicle that is used to carry the soul to its final destination. And, the final destination is not Heaven if a soul has not obeyed the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Bible says that repentance is to be preached. For a person has to repent in order to gain salvation. Sin has a price. And some of what we are seeing across the land is the result of sin. Mankind has turned its back on the God of creation. Mankind has refused the teachings of Jesus Christ. There is a price to pay to reject Christ.
John the Baptist came preaching repentance. The very first sermon Jesus preached was about repentance. Both of them said to 'repent, for the kingdom of God is at hand.'(Matthew 3:2, 4:17)
Repentance is still the message that is to be preached. Not power. Not money. Not the wisdom of men. But repentance. Isaiah 58:1 says, "Cry loud, spare not, lift thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins." Isaiah 59:1 says, "behold, the Lord's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy that it cannot hear: Bu your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear."
Do you need to repent? Back sliders need to come back to the Church. Those that have heard the Gospel message and chose not to obey it need to obey and get saved. Repent before it is ever lasting too late!!
God calls for Holiness (Hebrew 12:14 and I Peter 1:16)
As a preacher when I look around and see all that is going on in the world today, especially with this virus, it lets me know that time is almost up and Jesus is coming back for His church and the sinner is going to go to hell. So. many reject holiness. The Bible says without it, no man shall see the Lord (Hebrew 12:14). Don't be afraid of the virus. Be afraid of dying without being converted.
Praise the Lord!! I will bless the Lord at all times. His praise shall continually be in my mouth. The Lord is good. A very present help in trouble.
And this world is in trouble. The Church is too. The Bible says in Matthew 24:24, "For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders, insomuch that if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." Jesus said there will be false Christs. And some of what is being taught and preached to people is not the Christ of the Bible.
Jesus was/is the savior and deliverer. He came to set the captive free. Bible does teach that the government of the land has precedent over the Lord and what He commands His church to do. No where. When the church allows the laws of the land tell the church what it should do, know of a truth the law of the land will rule farther than what the Bible does say.
Those that make issues with a church building are looking at it all wrong. The people of God can meet anywhere. They just need to know where. Thus one of the reasons for having a location.
How long before the flesh gets comfortable being away from fellowship ship that it will no longer see a need to fellowship? How long before on line church is widely acceptable and expected?
As the scripture stated, if it were possible, the very elect will be fooled. And it is already started. My Lord.
Praise the Lord!! I will bless the Lord at all times. His praise shall continually be in my mouth (Psalms 34:1c).
My, my what a time we are living in. The third month of 2020 and this world is in trouble. The trouble is being called Covid-19. Covid-19 is a virus that is said to be most harmful. Thank the Lord that there is safety, healing and deliverance for the people of God in Christ Jesus!
Many are saying many things. Many are giving all kinds of advice. Many now have a 'word from the Lord' about what is going on. Many have opinions about what the Church should be doing during the pandemic. The opinions are all over the place and coming from every where. Cities and states are 'shutting down' because of this virus. Schools are closed. Colleges are closed. The countries borders are closed. Lives have been disrupted.
All I can say as relates to all this is Jesus is still Lord and He will take care of His people. There is no need for some grand prophecy. For the Saints of God the order of the day is obedience. Obeying the word of the Lord during this time may be seen as blatant disregard for authority. But that is not the case. We knew at some point in time the believer of our day would be tried to see if they would obey God or man. Obedience to God is not to disobey the laws of the land. But when the laws of the land go against the word of God, obedience to God is more important and of a necessity. Will it cause some of us to suffer. Yes. Will it cause some of us to appear as if we are 'teaching the people to be disobedient to authority'? Yes.
For the true church, gathering together is not a social function. It is a necessity. The Saints of God need to meet and worship the Lord and hear the word of God preached together. God told His people "not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together as the manner of some is: but exhorting one another and so much the more as ye see the day approaching." Hebrew 10:25.
The Church that Jesus purchased with His blood gathers out of necessity. I fear that too many of the people have been gathering more as a social gathering than to seek the face of the Lord, hear the word preached to the saving of the soul. The Church Jesus purchased with His blood has one goal, save the lost.
I do not know how all of this is going to turn out. What I do know is going to Church is part of the duty of a believer to demonstrate obedience to God. I am believing the Lord to watch over His people and to lead them in the way they should go during this time. At no time is gathering in the Name of Jesus meant to be an act of disobedience. In addition, the people of God have faith in the Lord. Not faith in God giving stuff and things. But faith in the word of God that the Lord will be everything he said he would be to the obedient. The Saint of God believes the Lord will protect because he said He would. When Asa was diseased in his feet, He sought the physician instead of the Lord. Then he died (II Chronicles 15:12,13). But when Hezekiah was sick, he turned his face to the wall and sought the Lord. God healed him (II Kings 20:1-5).
The just shall live by faith (Romans 1:17, Galatians 3:11, Hebrews 10:38).
Do not look down on or speak against those that truly trust in the Lord and live holy, sanctified lives. WE are not trying to be rebellious or have a disregard for authority. But the God we serve is higher than any man made authority.
"There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling." Psalms 91:10
All of us are going to die one day. Something is going to take our lives sooner or later. Have faith in God.
There is a gospel group named Commissioned. They sing a song entitled 'will you be ready when Jesus comes.' While listening to that song early Sunday morning, I began to weep. Why? Because so many are not ready. So many that go to the church building every week two, three, four times maybe more per week are not ready to meet the Lord. Why do I say this? Here is why.
In the book of Matthew chapter 24 the scriptures tell us what the signs of the end of the world are going to be. Those signs are happening right now (wars, rumors of war, pestilence, nation against nation, etc). The word of God teaches that holiness is required to see the Lord (I Peter 1:15-16. Living holy means to live separated from the world. It means to make a difference between clean and unclean.
In the Old Testament, which is for our learning, the priest that ministered in the tabernacle had to be clean. They had to wear priestly garments. To enter into the holy of hollies they could not have any sin in their life. The ark of the covenant, which represented the presence of God among Israel, could only be handled by the Levites. Why the Levites? Because when Moses come down from Mt Sinai with the law of God in his hand, he found Israel living in sin. Moses asked a question, 'who is on the Lord's side'? Only the tribe of Levi stepped forth. They said yes to God.
That same answer is required today from those that profess to love the Lord or profess to be servants of the Lord. Clean living (no sin), repentant, Holy Ghost filled, born again is the way under the New Covenant which Jesus ushered forth. Too many are handling the word of God that have not said 'yes Lord'. The born again believer is now the royal priesthood under the New Covenant. And in order to carry the presence of the Lord (Holy Ghost filled) the person has to be clean inside.
Oh, and there is more to being holy than singing fast songs and dancing.
The Bible says if any man be in Christ he is a new creature. Old things are passed away, behold all things become new.
Today was the Super Bowl. How many 'churches' had super bowl Sunday? How many pastors dressed in the jersey of their favorite team? How many televisions were placed in the place of worship to watch the game? How many believers had Super Bowl parties? And when I say Churches, I mean those that profess with their mouth that they have been born again and are Holy Ghost filled. When did the Holy Ghost start watching football? When did the Holy Ghost lead a believer to be worldly?
How many that say they love the Lord, are not faithful to church attendance? How many make excuses for not going to church? How many are not faithful to prayer meetings? How many are smoking and drinking and committing sexual sins? How many are full of jealously, hatred, cause confusion and division, are disrespectful to the Pastor, don't want the Pastor to correct them or tell them the truth? How many allow their children to be worldly but expect them to get the Holy Ghost filled? How many allow their children to be partakers of the world and say it is because the youth 'need balance'?
Gospel music is almost extinct. What is being caused Gospel music is not. Why do church meeting places have smoke and lights like a club? Why are women that profess to be holy cutting their hair and men are growing their hair. The Bible says it is a shame for a women to cut her hair and for a man to have long hair. Yet, it is being allowed.
Why are women professing to be holy wearing makeup? Short dresses? Sleeveless Dresses? Bare legs? Men with tight pants? Why are the 'Christian marriages falling apart? Why is the divorce rate among believers the same as that of the world?
Again, too many are not ready to meet the Lord. The Bible says if the righteous scarcely make it in, where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?
When you stand for God's truth many will dislike you. To those that ready our lessons, I pray that you pursue the holiness of God that the Bible teaches. This new holiness that many is teaching is not of the Lord. I heard a brother say today that the Holy Ghost and the word of God do not contradict each other. So if the spirit that is leading your life has you doing things the Bible does not teach, then you have the wrong spirit.
I often ask what and how are people defining holiness today? What happen to the standard? God has not changed.
Those that are being led astray will say that the standards of holiness that have been passed down since Acts chapter two is old fashion, old school or in a box. Well, it was a box shaped boat that God told Noah to build to save him and his family from the flood God sent to destroy a world full of sin. It was a boxed shaped item (the Ark of the Covenant) that had the presence of God. Of a truth, there is safety in the box.
No man can serve two masters. All unrighteousness is sin.
2020!! Thank the Lord for all He has done, all He is doing and all He is going to do. There is a saying that says, "when I think of the goodness of Jesus, and all He has done for me; my soul cries out alleluia, thank God for saving me."
But, if the blood is still running warm in your veins, your journey is not over yet. Some many not have even started the journey towards salvation. Be admonished this day to start seeking the Lord Jesus Christ for the saving of your soul. Going to Heaven is not automatic. Marvel not, you must be born again. And, Jesus Christ is the lamb slain from the foundation of the world that paid the ultimate price for sin.
Let us not forget that man that is born of a woman is born into sin. The sin nature is established at birth. The Bible says we all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. When a person reaches the age of accountability (no particular age), consideration needs to be made concerning the soul. And, Jesus paid the price for the way a soul can be redeemed and brought back into fellowship with God.
Romans 1:16 say, "For i am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first and also to the Greek." I Corinthians 1:21 says, "For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom know not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe."
In the book of II Samuel chapter 15 the word of the Lord speaks to how a heart can be turned away from the one a person should be serving to someone they should not be serving. The persons in this chapter are David and Absalom.
Absalom had a dislike for his father, David. Some say it is because David did not rebuke or deal with Ammon after he raped Tamar. But the exact reason is not mentioned. One thing for sure, Abaslom came against his father the king.
The Bible says Absalom sent for Joab to come unto the King even though Absalom had dwelled in Jerusalem for two full years himself after the birth of his children. Joab would not go. Abaslom asked Joab again to go to the king. And again, Joab did not go (II Samuel 14:27-29), Absalom then had his servants to set Joab's fields on fire and they did. What exactly was in Absalom's heart that would have him do such a thing? When Joab approached Absalom about setting his field on fire, Absalom told him it was because he had made a request of him and he (Joab), did not obey it. Absalom went on to say, "now therefore let me see the kings face; and if there be any iniquity in me, let him kill me." - II Samuel 14:32b
Then in II Samuel chapter 15 Absalom does something that made his father run from him. The Bible says in this chapter that Absalom stood beside the way of the gate: and it was so, that when any man that had a controversy came to the king for judgment, then Absalom called unto him..." What was Absalom doing? He was stopping the men from seeing the king and directing them to himself. Absalom took upon himself to act as one with authority; to act in authority King David had no given him.
Then in verse 3 the Bible says, "And Absalom said unto him, See, thy matters are good and right; but there is no man deputed (appointed as one's substitute, representative or agent) of the king to hear thee."
Who gave Absalom the right to make this statement? Why did he make this statement? Did King David say he needed help judging the people? Did King David say anything to Absalom about helping him judge the people? No.
In verse 4 Absalom makes the bold statement of telling the men to come directly to him if they need anything and by- pass the king. He made the statement that he (Abaslom) would do them justice. Verse 5 addresses how Absalom greeted any that came to him.
In verses 4-6 we see how Absalom stole the hearts of the people. He inserted himself before the King, he made himself available and did and said those things that pull at heart strings. "And on this manner did Absalom to all Israel that came to the king for judgment: SO ABSALOM STOLE THE HEARTS OF THE MEN OF ISRAEL." The people did not get to the king. Absalom made it appear of if the king was too busy or did not have time to do the work. Absalom demonstrates why it necessary for this in ministry and those that are working on their souls salvation to know those that labor among you. Absalom was doing things to help King David. He was doing things that would end up hurting his father, Israel and eventually himself.
When King David received word of what Absalom was doing, he ran from his kingdom." And there came a messenger to David, sayingt; The hearts of the men of Israel are after Absalom. And David said unto all his servants that were with him at Jerusalem, Arise, and let us flee; for we shall not else escape from Absalom: make speed to depart, lest he overtake us suddenly, and bring evil upon us, and smite the city with the edge of the sword."
The might man, King David, was put on the run by the actions of his son. For his son had stolen the hearts of the people. David knew that meant their allegiance was now to Absalom and the people would now do as Absalom commanded. David, a man after God's own heart, truly understood that he would be no match for his son since the hearts of the people were now with his son. David knew that men follow after what is in their heart. The Bible teaches to keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life (Proverbs 4:23).
Absalom put the king of Israel on the run, not with weapons or even throwing fist. He put him on the run by turning the hearts of the people away from the king. When the hearts of the people are against you, it can make you run.
What can we learn from these scriptures?
1. guard your heart
2. know those that labor among you
3. watch who you associate with
4. watch who you allow to speak to your heart
5. do now take instruction or direction from anyone the Elders have not put in place
6. do not listen to anyone that places themselves in a position of authority