All posts by theindwelling

Do you have the “Gift of Discouragement?”

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Do you have the “Gift of Discouragement?”  Those that have it generally don’t know it.  Visit www.theindwelling.com.

Pondering Thought:

The “Gift of Discouragement” is a humanistic “personality flaw,” in my opinion, that affects many; the sad part is that those who have it, do not realize they have “the gift.”  To put this in context of how I first learned of this gift, I will have to take you back to a 2015 musical performance by the group, Greater Vision, an American Southern Gospel trio, which was held at the First Baptist Atlanta church.

Gerald Wolfe, lead singer and founder of the group, during a break between songs, addressed Dr. Stanley, Pastor of First Baptist, with his view that a Gift of the Spirit had been omitted from the Manifestation of the Spirit list given to believers in Jesus Christ, read 1 Corinthians 12:1-14 for full insight.

Knowing that many will not look up the verses, I’ll list the gifts of the Spirit.  They are the gifts of: wisdom, knowledge, faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, discernment, tongues (various languages, my view) and interpretation of tongues. A believer may receive one or more and their purpose is to enhance the Body of Christ, the Church, as they spread the Gospel Message.

Gerald, of course, was joking as there is no Gift of Discouragement, but there are givers (bearers) of discouragement; they are generally well meaning individuals, but their views are harmful to those they interact with.  I imagine most people, at some time or the other, have had or presently have, individuals in their lives that are not encouragers but discouragers.  The discourager may have been a spouse, parent, sibling, friend, neighbor, relative, stranger and etc.  Maybe you are one.

Hopefully, you have never encountered a discourager for any long period of time.  Or, if you have, you have made it a practice to ignore discouraging remarks and have lived your life without damage to your soul and spirit.  Many, however, allow discouragers to damage the fruitfulness of their lives.

Thankfully there are encouragers in life.  An encourager can be anyone no matter whether or not they are religious, atheistic or whatever.  It is the way people are wired. Some see life optimistically (positive thoughts and comments) while others see life pessimistically (negative thoughts and comments).  Of course there are a myriad of people someplace within the span from positive to negative.

To have one encourager as a brother or sister in Christ would be a greater benefit than anything I can think of.  Paul writes in 1 Thessalonians 1:11, “Therefore encourage one another and build up one another,” and in Ephesians 4:29 he writes, “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear.” In other words, always be a positive influence in someone’s life.

You can live your life being encouraged or discouraged by your acquaintances in the humanistic “fleshly desires of immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and such” and be excluded from eternal life in the kingdom of God, or you can “crucify your fleshly desires and passions and enjoy a spiritual life with Jesus in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control,” paraphrased from Galatians 5:16-24.  You have a choice.  What will yours be?

Consider this thought, Biblical Christians would choose the spiritual life with Jesus, but Cultural Christians would vacillate between a worldly lifestyle while maintaining they know God and God knows them—a bad assumption.  Those without the Biblical God and knowledge of Him may have moral values but live a worldly life and thus are not truly known by God.

I can assure you that if you surround yourself with positive people you will come closer to reaching your potential. In the final analysis of life, you become like those you choose to surround yourself with.  In my opinion, true happiness can only be found in Jesus Christ through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

I’ll close with this.  If people could “love their neighbor as themselves” (paraphrased from Galatians 5:14), the world would truly be a better place.  Think about this from the standpoint of being an encourager or discourager. Which are you?

Those are my thoughts for the day.  What are yours?

Comment to bt@northloopcottage.com

Visit: www.twitter.com/closetchristian or www.theindwelling.com.

Scripture quotations in quotes and / or marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain).

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. The “NIV” and “New International Version” trademarks are registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by International Bible Society. Use of either trademark requires the permission of International Bible Society.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE® Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995, by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. www.Lockman.org” All rights reserved

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com /  theIndwelling.org / theindwelling.com / spirit.theIndwelling.org / SantaBelieves.org / All Rights Reserved.

Memorial Day, A Day of Remembrance.

 

 

Memorial Day 5/30/2016:

Today should be a day and time of remembrance. A time when we should reflect upon those who gave their lives for their country. I entered the Army at the age of seventeen and served three years’ active duty (1960-1963) with two years in what I refer to as paradise—the Canal Zone in Panama.  I have never looked upon my time in the military as something extraordinary that needs to be publicly honored (that is just me), but I am proud to have served my country in this way.

It is sad and disgusting that some, the atheists, Socialist and Progressive Democrats of the “humanistic kind,” are asking for Veteran Memorials to be destroyed because some may feature a cross. It is a shameful trend that unfortunately many millenniums support out of ignorance—their grandparents and parents did not instruct them to be patriotic or worst, not to believe in God, His Son and the Holy Spirit.  All who value America and their freedom should stand, fight and defend our home land as our Founders and Patriots have stood over the centuries.

Today’s Ponderings:

// This was an email to  those in my contact list. I have also chosen to add this to my blog page since I will be blogging on my current medical condition in a week or so. //

Hello to all. Today’s thoughts are for my brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ and for all my friends, some of whom are asking to be removed from my mailing list because of my stance for Biblical Christianity. As always, if this email reaches you in error or you no longer wish to receive emails from me, simple reply (be sure to reply to sender and not group) with “remove” in the subject line.  You will be removed with no questions asked.

Please remember that I do not forward emails from others. If you receive an email from me asking you to click on a link, do not do so as it is spam.  Also, I reply to all emails I receive that require a response.  At times, due to the spam messages that are screened out, I may not see an email from you.  I do breeze through my spam and junk folders on occasions looking for names of those I desire to remain in contact with.  So, if you do not get a reply and expect one, send me another email because I simply missed your email.  Thanks!

Now for today’s thoughts related to my current medical “condition.” Two months ago I suddenly became unable to walk any distance without my legs feeling as though I had fifty-pound weights for shoes.  One day I was able to climb stairs, run or take a brisk walk.  The next day I was limited in what I could do.  My “condition” has gradually worsened and to walk now I need the use of a cane. A walker may be next and if required, the “deluxe mobile chair with backup camera and a motorcycle style seating for two.”

My primary care physician suggested I see a Vascular Surgeon.  After having ultrasounds on my legs and a CT-Scan on my mid-section, my insurance company (I am an xxxxx retiree and xxxxx is my insurance company) was reluctant to schedule this test but finally conceded). Results of these tests revealed  no cause for my symptoms.  The Vascular doctor was almost certain that I had a blocked aorta given that my description of my walking condition fit all the “signs” of a blocked aorta.  While I did have severe plaque buildup in many blood vessels, none were acute, as in restrictive. However, on going monitoring , every six months, will be required.

An appointment was made with my heart doctor, and a nuclear stress test was ordered.  My last nuclear test, which was made approximately two years ago, found that three of my heart vessels were closed.  In 1997 I had bypass surgery and received six graphs—that’s a lot.  Since that time I have had two events (mild heart problems some call heart attacks). Twice cardiac cauterization was attempted, but my vessels were too small to stint or open. To make a long story short, I presently take sixteen medications daily to control “my heart condition.”  Up to this point I was able to do any and everything that I desired to do with no physical limitations.

Through it all I have had no pain and no “extreme” shortness of breath except for my 1997 event. Extreme is when you walk a few steps and have to sit down to catch your breath; I now do get winded when climbing steps or going up an incline. Because I am not having extreme shortness of breath my insurance company will not give their approval for the stress test.  That’s really OK by me because around fifteen percent of the people who undergo this test have a heart attack in the process of testing (my estimate based upon people I have talked with).   Nothing happens to me by chance so I look upon the cancelled test as a “God thing”.

I am told by doctors that a pinched nerve (remember I have no pain) can cause the condition in which I am experiencing except in most cases pain is involved.  A visit to my chiropractor (insurance does not cover) ruled out a pinched nerve in my back.  But, there may be a nerve condition somewhere that is causing me to gradually lose my ability to walk “the straight and narrow path” physically. There is a joke here somewhere, I think.

Not to let time pass in finding a diagnosis, I next saw a Neurology doctor who found in his examination that I could not walk a straight line, could not stand without the assistance of a cane, chair or some object to hold. I already knew that, but he does have expertise beyond what my limited (TV watching) medical skills would reveal.  He suspects that I have some condition that is squeezing a nerve or some “brain related issue.”  He has scheduled three MRI’s for this coming Wednesday.  There is the possibility that the test may be cancelled entirely or postponed temporarily by my insurance company so we will wait and see.

This year I will turn seventy-four and my wife and I will have been married fifty years (on June 26th).  Jokingly, for the past year, I would remind my wife that I felt that I could give her fifty “good years.” She would always reply with, “Let me know when those fifty years are going to begin.” This, the uncertainty of what is wrong, is harder on her than it has been on me because I know everything will work out as God intends it to be.

Many people are praying for me, and I appreciate their prayers.  As of yet, I have not felt the need to pray for healing for myself.  Why?  First, I would like to find out all about my “condition.”  Then, I will ask God to heal me if it is in His will to do so.  Whatever may come, I know that I can adapt and adjust my life style to accommodate whatever awaits me.

Yesterday in my prayer time I was thinking of you. Yes, each one of you individually.  I would like to pass the words below to you and ask that you mediate upon them.  If God speaks to you, I would ask you to acknowledge His words and follow them.

I Lifted You in Prayer (1 Peter 5:7)

by Rose Zechman, Mature Living, March 1997

I met with God this morning,

And I lifted you in prayer;

I knew your heart was heavy

With burdens and with care.

Your path may seem so lonely,

Your heart weighted down with

Care, God promises to help you,

Just go to Him in prayer.

His grace is all sufficient,

He’ll comfort you, my friend,

Just give Him all your burdens,

On Him you can depend.

Depend upon His mercy,

He waits to help you through,

So cast your care upon Him,

For He careth for you.

In January I gave up my “Santa Billy” character.  I sensed that I would not be able to play Santa this coming year, and it would be time for me to move on to my next calling. It is amazing how the Holy Spirit has led me throughout my entire life; at times I did not even realize it.

If you are interested in my calling, you can learn more at: www.theindwelling.com.  I also blog at: www.spirit.theindwelling.org and twitter at: www.twitter.com/closetchristian.

I will be blogging about “my condition” beginning sometime in the next week or so.  That is, if it turns out to be more severe than just a simple pinched nerve.  Thank you for being a friend.   No response is necessary.

Your friend in Christ.

If you would like more information on how to find God or to comment on this blog, please email your comments and questions to: bt@northloopcottage.com

Visit: www.twitter.com/closetchristian and www.theindwelling.com.

 

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com / theIndwelling.org / the indwelling.com / spirit.theindwelling.org.  All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain);

NIV are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.  Used by permission. www.lockman.org.”

 

Is Jesus your First Love?

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Biblical Christian, Jesus must remain your First Love.  Cultural Christians, repent and return to the Words of Jesus.

Bottom Line:

In God’s foreknowledge, He knew Christendom would not be the panacea for worldwide peace and harmony. Man’s unwillingness to forsake the pleasures and selfishness of his human heart’s desires, leads only to eternal death of his body, soul and spirit.  God offers man a sanctified, spiritual heart that will conform him to the likeness of Jesus Christ. All man has to do is deny his self-will, believe the Gospel Message of Jesus Christ—born of a virgin, died willingly on a cross for man’s sins, and arose from death—and allow the Holy Spirit to live within his heart, and make Jesus his First Love—nothing comes before Jesus; not family, friends, materialistic pleasures, or self.

Today’s Scripture:

“But realize this, that in the last day’s difficult times will come.  For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; avoid such men as these,” (2 Timothy 3:1-5).

Pondering Thoughts:

I see storms of darkness coming to the 21st Century American churches: both to Biblical Christians—those who accept Jesus Christ as their risen Savior and His Way as the only pathway to His Heaven and eternal life, and to Cultural Christians—those who profess but do not possess Jesus as their Lord and Savior. It is written, God will judge His Church and His people.

The atrocities that American’s see and read about daily that are happening at the hands of Islamic extremists, worldly governments and peoples of religious apostasies and thoughts throughout the world are coming to America.  America’s own governmental leaders are in many cases promoting persecution of those who hold to the TRUTH of Jesus and His Word, the Holy Bible; they accept the “Peaceful” religion of Islam and of Cultural Christianity, but reject the Peaceful religion of Biblical Christianity. They accept Islam out of fear. Followers of True Islam will kill you while followers of Biblical Christianity (the Overcomers in Jesus) will pray for you.

My heart goes out to all who face daily perils and persecutions but especially to the little children being raped, abused and murdered because of their belief in Jesus Christ. America should stand in their defense, but America’s government is quickly becoming one with those who seek to punish citizens who believe in Jesus.  Cultural Christians—those who know the name of Jesus but do not possess Him—deserve much of the blame as well as many Biblical Christians (those in need of repentance from their backslidden hearts) who have remained silent in their “cathedrals of safety” where they do not feel threatened to say the name of Jesus.

Both have stood by in their self-believed righteousness and by their inactions, fears, and in many cases their condoning world view, have allowed evil, masquerading as Political Correctness, to become so deeply ingrained that to change course and return to Godly morality will not be possible except through revolution or some major catastrophic world event that decimates a large percentage of the world population.  The “Al Gore’s” of the world should not concern themselves with global warming.  Biblical prophecy tells of total global burning when all things will perish as the earth is refined by fire like gold is refined by fire.

Many so called Cultural Christian Church bodies have excluded Jesus Christ from their sanctuaries.  They deny God and God’s Commandments and have established man-made rules of “righteousness.”  They have accepted the “LIE” of Satan, a created being, and have denied God, his (Satan’s) Creator.  The Creator God was asked to leave America, and it is my belief that He has left. America will pay a penalty, a harsh penalty, at the hands of evil men God will use as agents of His wrath.

But, what about the churches?  What is their role? In the Biblical Book of Revelation, Jesus—through an Angel and then through the Apostle John—gave Messages to the Seven Churches of Asia by name: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea.  These churches are said, by various commentators, to be representative of seven types of churches in the Apostle John’s time, churches during various time periods of church history and are also representative of the churches during the 21st Century.

The Church of Jesus Christ is not a physical building but a people group who claim Him as their Lord and Savior; they are referred to in the Bible as the “Bride of Christ.”  The physical churches are meeting places for the Brides of Christs and also for those who claim Jesus but who do not possess Him (children of Satan).  Jesus gave words to both groups in the Messages to the Seven Churches of Asia, see Revelation 2 and 3.

To the Brides of Christ, who may be found in all churches of Christendom, Jesus taught, “Hold to the Words of instruction and continue to worship Him as their First Love through both the good and bad times (persecutions and martyrdom).” First Love is to place Jesus Christ first in everything through prayer, Bible study and meditation, giving (the tithe), worship, service and reliance upon the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  To make Jesus your First Love and to place everything else second, is not to neglect all other aspects of your life—family, work, friends.  There must always be balance and that balance is found in allowing God’s Holy Spirit to indwell you and to be your Spiritual Guide in all walks of life.  True followers of Jesus Christ are overcomers of the materialism and worldliness of this world.

Examine your life and the life of the church you attend.  Are you, or your church, dead, dying, lukewarm or on fire for Jesus? Is your First Love Jesus or your church building, preacher, choir director, choir, a teacher, deeds of work or those mission trips. Are you working for Jesus or for your own “feel good” pleasures and recognitions?  What about those visitors you fail to greet with a smile and a welcome?  Better still, are you willing to give up your “click” to welcome new members from the existing church body? Think about it.

In your daily Bible study time, read about the seven churches and ponder on their conditions as seen by Jesus and not by man. While you read think about the church at Smyrna and at Philadelphia.  These two had no complaint, warning, or condemnation from Jesus.  Consider Jesus’ words to:

  • The Church at Smyrna, ¹a persecuted church: “I know your tribulation and your poverty (but you are rich). And the blasphemy by those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. Do not fear what you are about to suffer,” “Some of you are about to be tested, thrown into prison and martyred but overcome and be faithful until death and you will not be hurt by the second death, the Great White Throne Judgment,” Revelation 2:8 -11 paraphrased.
  • The Church at Philadelphia, ¹a favored church: “I know your deeds…you have a little power, and have kept My word, and have not denied My name…Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing (tribulation period), that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth…He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God…,” Revelation 3:7-13.

To those churches and people who had fallen, backslidden or just were not up to “His standards,” He did offer words of commendation, praise, and promise for “works” they had once performed when they began their relationship with Him, but He also gave warning, chastening, complaints, and counsel if they refused to repent (they had left their First Love) and return to Him; consider those words:

  • “I stand at your door and knock,” (applies to all but spoken to the church at Laodicea). Open your door (your heart) and receive me and make me your First Love.  In other words, Jesus must be first in your life. All who claim Christianity must be indwelled by the Holy Spirit.  Without the indwelling, there is no salvation, no home in Jesus’ heaven and no eternal life.
  • Reject the doctrine of Balaam (The Church at Pergamum [¹a licentious church]). “I know where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is; and you hold fast My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days of Antipas, My witness, My faithful one, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells.  But I have a few things against you, because you have there some who hold the teaching of Balaam…So you also have some who in the same way hold to the teaching of the Nicolaitans.  Therefore repent…to him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it.,” Revelation 2: 12-17 paraphrased.

Balaam was a Midianite prophet who was sent by Balak, king of Moab, to curse Israel.  Read the story in Numbers, chapters 22 through 25.  God would not allow Balaam to curse Israel (God even had Balaam’s donkey speak to him) so he, Balaam, suggested to Balak to have a festival, a feast to worship Moab’s god, Baal-Peor, that included idol worship and acts of licentiousness (immorality). Men of Israel accepted the invitation of Balak; they attended the festival and participated in their pagan activities.  God allowed thousands of Israelites who attended to be killed by a plague because of their participation.

“Balaamism” is thus wickedness, apostasy, idolatry, compromise and acts of sexual immorality that people of Christendom allow themselves to be willingly seduced by. “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness,” 2 Corinthians 6:14.

  • Reject the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes (The Church at Ephesus [¹a backslidden church). “I know you deeds and your toil and perseverance, and that you cannot tolerate evil men, and you put to the test those who call themselves apostles, and they are not, and you found them to be false; and you have perseverance and have endured for My name’s sake, and have not grown weary.  But I have this against you, that you have left your First Love.  Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deed you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place—unless you repent…Yet you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.  To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life…,” Revelation 2: 1-7 paraphrased.

This was not a sect, as such, but was an effort by church leaders to establish a hierarchy of leadership (Clergy) over the common people (the Laity) of the Church.  After all, why have Pastors when you can have Clergy—Bishops, Cardinals, Popes and etc. Biblical Christians have direct access to Jesus and do not need an intermediator (man) to speak for them to God. Not all members of the Church at Ephesus accepted this teaching.  What about your church? Are there false prophets and teachers?

When ritualism resembling former pagan customs becomes more important than Jesus Christ’s Salvation by Grace, you have a Church in trouble.  Why compromise on the truth Jesus taught?

  • Reject Jezebelism (The Church at Thyatira [¹a lax church]). “I know your deeds, and your love and faith and service and perseverance, and that your deeds of late are greater than at first.  But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols…To those of you who do not hold this teaching…hold fast until I come…and …overcome…,” Revelation 2:18-29.

Jezebel was a princess of idolatry devoted to Baal and Astarte, both pagan religions.  Through her family and her husband, Ahab, they introduce idolatry to Israel and killed many prophets of the Lord.  You can read about it in 1st Kings.

When the Apostle John wrote the book of Revelation, the Jezebel of the Old Testament times had been dead a long time.  Her death was actually gruesome as she was thrown from a second story window, trampled by horses and eaten by dogs who licked her blood from the streets.

Jezebelism is the allowance of “objects of worship” to become part of the Order of Worship. When people bow down to objects or pray to objects and claim that these objects are godly religious acts (many are from former pagan cultures) of worship and more important than the Bible, the Living Word of God, you have Cultural Christendom and Church Apostasy.

Jezebelism is also a compromising church and people group; What’s so wrong with homosexuality? What is wrong with throwing a little salt on the fire and saying Caesar is god? It harms no one and is the “right” thing for a great society say the teachers of false doctrine and political correctness.  America, your sins are great. REPENT.

  • Flee from the Dead Church (The Church at Sardis [¹a dead church]). “I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead. Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God…there are a few that…are worthy…and I will not erase their name from the book of life,” Revelation 3:1-6 paraphrased.

The dead church is another type of church that is formal, ritualistic and holds to false teachings and ungodly claims of knowledge and compromise.   It has a form of Godliness but because of unbelief it has no power. While there may not be idol worship as such, there is no Bible study or Bible reading.  They are not a church that is watching and waiting for Jesus to return. They too are a compromising church.

  • Come out of the Luke Warm Church (The Church at Laodicea [¹a lukewarm church]). “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot…because you are neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth…you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked…repent and overcome,” Revelation 3:14-22 paraphrased.

The Luke Warm Church is a church that maintains and performs a lot of activity, but there is no spiritual power.  The church is also a compromising church with material wealth and large activity centers, but there is no Jesus and no power in the Holy Spirit. Reliance upon money and the things it can buy for the “Church Community” are more important than the Spiritual Power God can provide. In other words, trust in God’s provisions and not by man’s “wealth.” God said that He stands outside the doors of this particular type church and knocks, asking to be let in.

¹from The Book of Revelation, Clarence Larkin, REV. CLARENCE LARKIN ESTATE, Glenside, Pa. 19038, p. 20-28.

Look around at the world today.  The world has always been plagued by evil men so today’s evil is nothing new.  Men have evidence of past and present atrocities but yet they are blinded to the reality of God’s final solution for man and the evil powers that are to come. “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in heavenly places,” Ephesians 6:12.

Today, we are witnessing a decline in the number of True Churches of Jesus Christ in America. Many of today’s Churches are churches in name only.  There is no power in their prayers and ministries. No healing and Christ like fellowship.  Revival is needed, but there will be no revivals.  Today’s men are much too sophisticated to walk the aisle of repentance, confessing their sins and turning from their wicked ways. They will be judged by Jesus at the Great White Throne Judgment.  Please note, only
God knows the true believers in any church. There may be “the Elect” in all church denominations, but the elect are true followers of Jesus Christ and HIS teachings.  The elect may be there to be “salt and light” to those who are to become followers of Jesus Christ. God’s wrath will be brought against all teachers of false doctrine and the apostasies committed by those who worship in temples of Satan.

Today a choice must be made. You must either accept the calling of God’s Spirit that is convicting you that you are a sinner—outside the will of God—and you must repent—change from your life of sin—and accept the Gospel Message of Jesus Christ and make Jesus your First Love. Or, you must refuse to accept the Creator God of Biblical Christianity—the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob—and reject His Son, Jesus Christ, as the only true pathway to heaven. There are only two pathways.  Will you take the narrow path that leads to eternal life or will you take the broad path that leads to eternal damnation?  The choice is yours to make.

Are you willing to do it God’s way or man’s way?  God says to come out of the world.  If you choose not to accept God’s calling you will remain outside of God’s coming kingdom and the eternal life that He promised to those who love Him.

“Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin,” James 4:17.

Those are my thoughts for today.  What will be your decision?

If you would like more information on how to find God or to comment on this blog, please email your comments and questions to: bt@northloopcottage.com

Visit: www.twitter.com/closetchristian and www.theindwelling.com.

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com / theIndwelling.org / the indwelling.com / spirit.theindwelling.org.  All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain);

NIV are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.  Used by permission. www.lockman.org.”

 

Are you tired, lonely, without hope, rejected and defeated?

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Are you tired, lonely, without hope, rejected and defeated? Find HOPE and GRACE in Jesus Christ. More at www.spirit.theindwelling.org.

The only way to eternal life.

Are you lonely, without hope, rejected and defeated?  There is hope, and you can find that hope today if you would like to “walk the aisle of faith” and surrender to Jesus Christ and become a child of the living God. Talk with God and surrender your heart by simply saying the words in the Plan of Salvation that follows:

Plan of Salvation

  • Confession: Jesus, I confess that I am lost and without hope, living by my sinful human nature outside your will.
  • Repentance: Jesus, I will turn away from my sinful ways (confess your sins), and I will walk in them no longer.
  • Believe: Jesus, I believe that you are the Son of God. I believe that you died on a Roman Cross for my sins and that you arose from the grave.
  • Ask: Jesus, I surrender my will to you, and I ask that you will come into my heart so that I may be in you and you will be in me as you are in God and God is in you.
  • Receive: Jesus, I will receive the indwelling of your Holy Spirit, and I will allow your Spirit to lead me.
  • Rejoice: Jesus, I rejoice that I am now a part of your church—the bride of Christ—and I promise to be faithful and true and to make you my Lord and Savior for the rest of my life.

Claim Him by opening your heart to Him.  Write me and let me know of your decision.

Comment to bt@northloopcottage.com

Visit: www.twitter.com/closetchristian or www.theindwelling.com.

 

Scripture quotations in quotes and / or marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain).

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. The “NIV” and “New International Version” trademarks are registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by International Bible Society. Use of either trademark requires the permission of International Bible Society.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE® Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995, by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. www.Lockman.org” All rights reserved

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com /  theIndwelling.org / theindwelling.com / spirit.theIndwelling.org / SantaBelieves.org / All Rights Reserved.

America is Quickly “Slip, Slidin’ Away.”

TWEET:

Many followers of ISLAM stand ready to kill or potentially maim you if you desecrate the name of Allah.  True Biblical Christians are not.  Why?

Today’s Pondering Thoughts:

“Slip, Slidin’ Away,” lyrics written and recorded by Paul Simon, 1977.

There is a one hundred and eighty-degree difference between the god of Islam and the God of Biblical Christianity.  Do you know the difference? If you do not your life could be in jeopardy. America is already in danger, but there is little awareness because of America’s acceptance of Political Correctness and her leader’s, and many of her peoples’ belief that there is no GOD.

Over the years I have written many times about the varying differences between Islam and Biblical Christianity; however, besides the wording of today’s TWEET, I will not revisit those thoughts.  I will post my previous writings to my web site in the near future for those who may choose to read more.  But for now, I have another topic.

Prior to moving on to my thoughts for today, please consider and mediate upon the following scripture verses: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction,” Proverbs 1, 7; “But he who listens to me shall live securely and will be at ease from the dread of evil,” Proverbs 1:33.

For this past year or so I have been led by the Spirit to limit my post on this site and on my twitter account.  Although I have written numerous “mini-sermons,” as I like to call them, most remain in their unpublished state.  However, as time moves on I become more and more uneasy, a natural human reaction, about not posting new information as I know readers need “fresh stuff” or they move on.  My thoughts posted here carry over to my Twitter posts and vise-a-versa so it’s akin to writers block, but actually spiritually blocked—at least that is the best way I can explain the reason for my limited posts.

// A side note:  If you wish to contact me please do so by the comment page on this site.  Otherwise, your email will go to my spam folder and will never be read.  Please try again via my comment page if you have sent me an email, and I have not answered.  It is unfortunate that there are many who choose to launch personal attacks because of the nature of my blog and of necessity my screening process sometimes deletes both the good and bad emails. However, I will answer all emails I see from “legitimate” email addresses.  Thanks to all my readers for your support over the years. //

My mission as a Spirit filled Biblical Christian who has given his life to the Lord Jesus Christ is to tell others about what He has done, is doing and will do in the future for me personally and as such, to be a light for the world to see how the saving grace and mercy of Jesus Christ can change the lives of all who become His children.  I have paraphrased a portion of Jesus’ “Salt and Light” words from Matthew 5:12-16.

To become a child of God is the greatest thing that can ever happen to anyone.  If you have not experienced the “New-Spiritual Birth,” God’s spirit will invite you personally if you will listen for His call.  It is all free because Jesus has given His life to redeem those who will choose to allow Him to become their Lord and Savior.

My God does not need me to defend Him, to be judgmental of others or to be a pious, hypocritical religious fool like many over the history of the church. Too many have given Christianity a bad name because they are living in their humanistic nature and not in the New-Birth nature of the Holy Spirit.

Look at the manner in which Jesus taught.  When being tested by a Pharisee as to what was, “the greatest commandment in the Law,” Jesus responded by saying: “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,” Matthew 22:37 (NIV). There is no hatred or condemnation in Biblical Christianity.

So, let me ask you this question: “Why is there such hatred for Jesus?”  I believe it is because the majority of people only know what they have heard from others about God and the Bible—His Word.  They have never read or studied the biblical scriptures.  They do not know the TRUTH Jesus Christ reveals to those who love Him. Why? They are not His disciples because they have not heard His call. Why? Because their minds have been clouded by the spiritual forces of darkness, and they cannot hear the message of God.

Think upon this: Either you believe in the Creator God who sent His Son Jesus Christ to be an atonement for the sins of man and to redeem man from the wrath of judgment to come on God’s “Great White Throne Judgment Day” or you don’t.  Salvation is a free gift from God.  You do not need to earn your way to eternal life by doing good works and living a righteous life although once you have accepted God’s pathway and allowed His Holy Spirit to indwell you, you will naturally do good works and lead a righteous life because of your love for such a great Savior.

It is your choice to make.  Choose wisely and do not let the humanistic values of the worldly cloud your judgment.  After all, do you want to spend an eternity out of the presents of God with your ungodly friends in the Lake of Fire because you chose to listen to them instead of listening to God’s voice that is calling YOU?

Those are my thoughts for today.  What are yours?

Comment to bt@northloopcottage.com

Visit: www.twitter.com/closetchristian or www.theindwelling.com.

Scripture quotations in quotes and / or marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain).

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. The “NIV” and “New International Version” trademarks are registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by International Bible Society. Use of either trademark requires the permission of International Bible Society.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE® Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995, by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. www.Lockman.org” All rights reserved

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com /  theIndwelling.org / theindwelling.com / spirit.theIndwelling.org / SantaBelieves.org / All Rights Reserved.

Do You Have Hope in an Afterlife?

TWEET:

If you have no hope in life after death, what purpose would you have to live?  Without hope man would be like animals; their lot would be: to be born, to live and to die.

WordPress Heading: Do you have hope in an afterlife?

Application, Pondering and Takeaways:

If you have no hope in life after death, what purpose would you have to live?  Without hope man would be like animals; their lot would be: to be born, to live and to die.  In the animal kingdom, the strong have dominion over the weak and do as they please.  If life was meant to be lived on earth without the hope of an afterlife, it would indeed be meaningless. Only the strong (they could be benevolent, dictatorial or somewhere in between) would survive and rule over the weak. Suicide would be for many a better option than a meaningless life.

There is something within man that compels him to cry out for peace within his soul and the need to worship the Creator God. The “children” of Satan do not have this need as they worship him and his materialistic world, and the immorality of pleasure.

Man knows of God through what has been created and revealed; however, his mind has been clouded by his human nature’s self-will and his desire for wanton pleasures (read Romans 1-2). Man has an innate need for God, but does not understand how to find God.

Satan, the god of this world who was called Lucifer when he walked in the heavenly realm as a creation of God, desires to be worshipped by man.  His spiritual powers lead man to follow humanistic pagan rituals: worship of the sun, moon, stars and carved images desiring fertility, rain, warmth, and other creature comforts.  Man, without God, will cry out to unknown materialistic gods seeking benevolence, power and victory while the True and Living God beckons their hearts to come to Him.

All men will cry out, promising or cursing, to their God or gods in times of despair.  I would bet even atheists, if they were honest, would admit they have cried out to a god in a moment of “desperation and despair.”  Their cries were not answered because gods of gold, silver and worldliness cannot see, hear or talk.  Man will deny the existence God or gods when he in desperation pleated for God’s help or answer to prayer and no answer was given. Only those who have faith and belief in God will receive an answer to prayer.

There is a creator God.  He will answer your cries if you acknowledge Him as the one TRUE God and make Him your Lord and Savior.  He will hear your prayers and cries and will answer them. The Bible “speaks” of man’s journey to find God; find a Bible and begin to read of this journey. Caution: If God is not calling you and you are not seeking God in repentant faith but only in remorse, your reading and prayers will be of no avail to finding peace with God and eternal life.

It is ironic that while man cannot accept in faith the Creator God, they will accept the thoughts and actions of other men as truths. God said sexual immorality would lead to death; man says sexual immorality and humanistic decadent pleasures are individual rights of man and their practice will not lead to death.  You are free to decide your own faith and many in today’s secular culture are doing “what is right in their own eyes” as did men more than twenty-five hundred years ago. They died in their sins and unbelief and will face the “Great White Throne Judgment” just as today’s man will.

Christians are condemned in today’s society because they believe in the Creator God and His commandments.  A distinction should be made in the word “Christian.”  Many, since the time of Christ, have called themselves Christians.  They have knowledge of who Jesus is (or was in their belief system), but they never possessed Jesus in their heart.  In other words, to be a follower of Jesus Christ the Holy Spirit must indwell the believer, and the believer must surrender his life to God and walk in the newness of life that will be given him.

Without the indwelling Spirit, many who have called or identified themselves as Christians have given Jesus and Christianity a bad name.  Christians are to love, not hate.  Many terrible things have been done in the name of Christianity by those whose character and walk were done in their humanistic understanding and not in the Spiritual understand that would have changed their heart and soul and made them true followers of Jesus Christ.

I call myself a Biblical Christian in that I follow the commands of the Trinity that demonstrate the perfect love that is found when a man’s self-will is regarded as filthy trash and man turns his life over to be led by the Spirit of God.  Please note: A true believer (Biblical Christian) does not become a clone.  He still has a choice to live in accordance with the Holy Spirit’s wisdom and direction, or He can decide at any time to lead a decadent life style believing in man’s belief system of lust, greed and self-pleasure rather than in God’s way to life eternal.

The spiritual forces of darkness will lead you to death.  The Spiritual force of God will lead you to life eternal.  It is your choice.  It is my prayer that you will become one of the blessed ones whom God calls to accept the Gospel Message of Jesus Christ and to inherit eternal life.

Those are my thoughts for today, what about you?

If you would like more information on how to find God or to comment on this blog, please email your comments and questions to: bt@northloopcottage.com

Visit: www.twitter.com/closetchristian and www.theindwelling.com.

 

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com / theIndwelling.org / the indwelling.com / spirit.theindwelling.org.  All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain);

NIV are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.  Used by permission. www.lockman.org.”

 

Christian, have your ever read the “Fine Print.”

TWEET:

Christian, have you ever read the fine print? Your “free ticket” to heaven may be in jeopardy. Visit www.spirit.theindwelling.org and www.theindwelling.com.

PONDERING THOUGHT:

With a recent refill of a medical prescription drug I took time to glance over the pharmaceutical pamphlet that was provided and to read all the “fine print” of uses and cautions associated with this drug.  To not take or to discontinue taking the prescription as prescribed could lead to, in the case of this drug, a heart attack, stroke or even death.

I have been taking this medication for over ten years so to suddenly stop, according to my physician, could lead to severe consequences.  So, for the foreseeable future I’ll continue to take the drug as prescribed.  But, as in the case of some drugs and this one in particular, long term use could also lead to other physical or mental issue, “in some people,” yet to be made know the severity; in my circumstances there could be possible kidney or liver issues.

All this led to my pondering and wondering about eternal life, and the pondering questions, “Am I (or you) a child of God or am I (or you) a child of Satan?” came to mind.  Is there any “fine” print one should be aware of before that final “curtain call” the professing Christian  (cultural Christians come to mind) should have been aware of or should have read?

The Fine Print:

In the  Mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven parables, Jesus gives a forward view of the spread of Christianity, “all forms,” from His ascension to His Second Coming.

The simple message of Jesus can be summarized in His Words recorded in the Holy Bible.  If you do not believe in the Trinity of God—God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit—and in the inerrancy of the Holy Bible (the Word) your fate is sealed for eternity and your final destiny will be in the Lake of Fire and Brimstone with “…the devil who deceived them…where the beast and false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever,” Revelation 20:10.  Remember, Satan will not be ruling in the Lake of Fire.  He will be tormented there as will those who chose to follow him.

Application, Ponderings and Takeaways:

In the kingdom of heaven parables, Jesus taught that not everyone would accept or believe the Word (the Gospel Message of Jesus Christ as we understand it).  In other words, the message of Christianity would not be the panacea for the total betterment of all humanity.  In fact, Jesus even questioned whether He would even find faith remaining at His return, His Second Coming.

Biblical prophecy is being fulfilled today, in front of our very own eyes, but the vast majority of mankind, especially the intellectually elite, will not open their minds to the Truth that is taught in the Biblical Scriptures.  How about you? Have you been blinded to wisdom and knowledge because of your unbelief?

If mankind could just believe and follow the simple commandments of God found in the Holy Bible, the world would be a better place.  Unfortunately, most men and women in the past, the present and in the future will not accept the Creator God, His Word and His Commandments.  Man’s heart without God is filled with all forms of rebellious and immoral schemes because of their greed, lust and unforgiving nature of the human spirit.

When the Good-News of Jesus Christ is proclaimed or taught, those hearing the message will believe or not believe.  So Christian man or woman, which are you (not your gender but your spiritual standing with God)? Are you the one in which the Spirit of God is growing? Are you working in His Kingdom or are you one of the “others”?

As we look at today’s world, Christianity has not and will not change the human spirit of everyone despite what many of today’s apostates—those who question the deity of Jesus—theologians claim. The Kingdom of Heaven Parables represent the visible and invisible Christendom period with its many denominational beliefs and doctrines—some of God and some of the Devil.

While there could be Heaven on Earth if every soul was a true believer, it simply will not be so.  The evidence as to why it will not be so is obvious if eyes were opened. Within Christianity you will fine both good and bad, the saved and unsaved, and it will not be until Jesus’ Second Coming (remember, there are two phases to His coming—the rapture and the revelation) that the true believers will be known.

That is my thought for today, what is yours?

To continue reading more about the “Fine Print” of Biblical Christianity visit, www.theindwelling.com, and look under “mini-sermons.”

If you have questions or comments, email me at bt@northloopcottage.com or bst@theindwelling.com.

Visit: www.twitter.com/closetchristian

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com / theIndwelling.org / the indwelling.com / spirit.theindwelling.org.  All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain);

NIV are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.  Used by permission. www.lockman.org.”

 

The Indwelling Spirit of Biblical Christianity

Tweet:

The Indwelling Spirit of Biblical Christianity is not understood by many who claim to be Christian.  What about you?  Visit: spirit.theindwelling.org.

Application, Pondering and Takeaways:

The Holy Spirit of God indwells—lives within—all who confess and repent of their transgressions (sins against God and His commandments) and surrenders their self-humanistic will to allow Jesus Christ to become their Lord and Savior.  With the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, one becomes a temple of the living God and will become a beacon of light and hope for a fallen world.

The indwelling Spirit is God’s pledge that one belongs to Him and is now a son or daughter that will be renewed in Spirit to the likeness of Jesus Christ.

To come to Jesus Christ your heart must be receptive and willing to surrender.  You are at a point that I like to call, crawling in the gutter of life, and crying out to God—your creator—for help. Many crawl in the gutters of life but few cry out to God.  Those who do cry out will be called by God’s Spirit to Repentance if they are willing.

What is there to surrender, you may ask?  You surrender your self-will to do the things your way—the humanistic and secular ways of man—and accept God’s way—death to the physical worldly desires to be reborn in the spiritual ways that God intends for man to walk. You cannot come to Jesus unless the Spirit of God draws you to Him.

You will know in your inner being that you are being called.  That inner voice will be calling and you must obey His call.  Once you step out in faith, your burdens will be lifted. Your physical conditions may not be transformed but your mental condition will be.  You will be reborn of the Spirit—the new-birth / newness of life—and your life in Christ will began.

Your new-birth is not a feeling.  It is total Spiritual Transformation.  You will be set free, but you will be at the beginning of your journey, a baby, and you must be filled with God’s Word—the Bible—and the need for fellowship, in a Bible Believing Church, with other believers in the faith.

To read, study and mediate on God’s Word is a necessity for the born-again believer in Jesus Christ.  It is as important, maybe more so, than food is to the body.  God’s Word nourishes the Spirit and feeds the Soul.  With Spiritual nourishing your soul will die to the human need to be filled by the fleshly desires of man.

Over time as you read God’s Word, the Holy Spirit will interpret passages that the Spirit knows you have need of for being His witness.  Your salvation is not for you alone.  You are to come out of the world of darkness and become a beacon of hope and light for those in the darkness.

As a born-again believer in Jesus Christ, you become a Spiritual temple of the creator God, a Spiritual member of the Body of Christ, and with all the other Spiritual followers of Jesus Christ you will become His Bride at the Marriage Feast of the Lamb prior to His Second Coming.  As it is written, “Greater is the Spirit in you then the spirit that is in the world—Lucifer, his angels and demons.”  You will have powers beyond that you feel you are able.  You will be persecuted, maybe martyred, for your witness.  However, God will never forsake or leave those who claim His name.

I am afraid that many who claim to be Christians are not indwelled by His Holy Spirit.  If you are not sure, talk with God.  He will answer you.

Let the lost of this world revile and persecute you. They do not know any better.

That is my thought for today, what is yours?

To find out more visit: www.theindwelling.com.

If you have questions or comments, email me at bt@northloopcottage.com or bst@theindwelling.com.

Visit: www.twitter.com/closetchristian

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com / theIndwelling.org / the indwelling.com / spirit.theindwelling.org.  All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain);

NIV are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.  Used by permission. www.lockman.org.”

Christian, are you working as a full-time or as a part-time disciple of Jesus Christ?

Christian, are you a full-time servant of Jesus or are you working part-time? Or, perhaps you are not working at all.  Every Bible believing, born-again, Spirit filled Christian should be a full time disciple of their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

This is not to say that a disciple of Jesus should be in a full time vocational job such as a minister, missionary, choir director and etc.  But, your life is to be a testimony to the saving Grace you experienced at your redemption. If in your everyday life you cannot be identified as a Christian by your walk, you have not totally surrendered your humanistic self-will to God’s Holy Spirit.

We are told that you will know Jesus’ followers and disciples by the “fruit of the Spirit,” Galatians 5:22-23. These “fruits” of the Spirit are: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Peacefulness, Gentleness and Self-control.  Do you have this fruit and are they shown consistently in your day-to-day life?

Now, you will never be perfect nor will you as a man perfectly display all the fruit of the Spirit until Jesus takes you home.  Take King David for example.  David—the slayer of the Philistine giant Goliath—was loved by God, but David committed adultery with Bathsheba and had her husband, Uriah—a devoted soldier to David—, murdered in order to possess her. David was rebuked by Nathan, the Prophet, and forgiven by God; however,  David had to live with the consequences of his actions for the remainder of his life, and they were not good.  You can read about his life in 2nd Samuel 11 and 12.

Jesus called you to come out of the materialistic world physically and spiritually.  All true born-again believers are indwelled by the Holy Spirit and are no longer to be of this world by practicing or giving approval to the humanistic acts of “sexual immorality, impurity, debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies and the like,” Galatians 5:19-21. “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires,” Galatians 5:24.

Let’s look at the indwelling of the Holy Spirit for a moment because the “indwelling” is not intuitively, from a humanistic standpoint, understood by casual Christians (not true believers) and many “main-line,” denominational church leaders.  God does not need a man-made church or temple in which to dwell (read Isaiah 66 for insight).  After all, God is the creator of everything so if He needed a dwelling place He would build (create) His own.  God is the living God. He is not some man-made idol of gold or silver.

In God’s righteousness He chose to dwell within man, and by His indwelling man would become God’s Temple. For the disciple and follower of Jesus Christ, assurances are given in biblical scriptures.  I’ll list several:

  • “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is sacred, and you are that temple,” 1st Corinthians 3:16.
  • “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price.  Therefore honor God with your body,” 1st Corinthians 6: 19.
  • “What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols?  For we are the temple of the living God.  As God has said: ‘I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people,” 2nd Corinthians 6:16.
  • “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit,” Galatians 5:24-25.
  • “The One (God) that is in you is greater than the one (Satan) who is in the world, paraphrased from “1st John 4:4.

Followers of Jesus Christ will have a testimony, and they should be prepared at all times to: “…in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.  Bu do this with gentleness and respect, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander” (1 Peter 3:15).

There is a “KEY” that anyone who has been called to become a follower of Jesus Christ must have.  That key is to: 1) acknowledge sin in your life, 2) ask for forgiveness, 3) repent / turn away from your sinful acts, 4) surrender to and obey the leading of the Holy Spirit that will indwell you, 5) deny your humanistic self-will, 6) live by faith and trust that God will do what He says He will do.

Jesus died for you, but He arose and is alive and is the mediator between you and God.  If you have not been indwelled by the Holy Spirit, you have not become a “Temple of God.”   If God’s Spirit does not dwell in you, you are lost in your sins and will not enter His eternal kingdom.

The Christian world celebrates Christ’s resurrection every year in what is called Resurrection Sunday.  Biblical Christians honor Him with their Body, Soul and Spiritual Heart.  Cultural Christians simply bring Him from “His Tomb” and return Him shortly thereafter to return to their true gods of worldly materialism and immorality.  Which one are you?

If you claim to be a follower of Jesus it is my prayer that you recognize that you are a “Temple of the Living God.”  If not, I pray that you will be moved by God to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior and become a temple of the living God and indwelled by His Holy Spirit.

Lives are changed by Jesus.  Trust Him and find out for yourself.

Those are my comments for today.  How about you?

If you have questions or comments, email me at bt@northloopcottage.com

Or visit: www.theindwelling.com or www.twitter.com/closetchristian.

Copyright © 2008-2016 by: North Loop Cottage LLC / NorthLoopCottage.com / theIndwelling.org / the indwelling.com / spirit.theindwelling.org.  All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. (Public Domain);

NIV are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.  Used by permission. www.lockman.org.”

As a follower of Jesus Christ various biblical scriptures encourage you in many ways.  I will list a few that I recently made note of from a local TV ministry:

  • “Contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints,” Jude 1:3;
  • Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teachings of Christ does not have God,” 2nd John 1:9;
  • “Our people (brethren and faithful followers) must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order that they may provide for daily necessities and not lead unproductive lives,” Titus 3:14;
  • “Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction,” 2nd Timothy 4:2;
  • “Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness,” 2nd Timothy 2:19.

Christian, Have You Read the Fine Print?

TWEET:

Christian, have you ever read the fine print? Your “free ticket” to heaven may be in jeopardy. Visit www.spirit.theindwelling.org and www.theindwelling.com.

PONDERING THOUGHT:

With a recent refill of a medical prescription drug I took time to glance over the pharmaceutical pamphlet that was provided and to read all the “fine print” of uses and cautions associated with the drug.  To not take or to discontinue taking the prescription as prescribed could lead to, in the case of this drug, a heart attack, stroke or even death.

I have been taking this medication for over ten years so to suddenly stop, according to my physician, could lead to severe consequences.  So, for the foreseeable future I’ll continue to take the drug as prescribed.  But, as in the case of some drugs and this one in particular, long term use could also lead to other physical or mental issue, “in some people,” yet to be made know the severity; in my circumstances there could be possible kidney or liver issues.

All this led to my pondering and wondering about eternal life, and the pondering questions, “Am I (or you) a child of God or am I (or you) a child of Satan?” came to mind.  Is there any “fine” print one should be aware of before that final “curtain call” the professing Christian should have been aware of or should have read?

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