Real Life

Something to think about.
 
Real Life 
 
48 but Jesus said to him, “Judas, would you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?” Luke 22:48
 
We Christians want, even portray Christianity as being a wonderful harmonic belief system. We do everything we can to make it as attractive as possible. We try to accentuate the great things about Christianity.
 
The reality is Christ was betrayed by one in His inner circle. His disciples were persecuted and killed. His believers were hunted, tortured and killed. His followers to this day are being abused, persecuted and murdered. His teaching are under attack. There is infighting among us.
 
Why am I writing this? If we deal with the reality, we might not lose so many to the deception that is our enemy. If we better prepare ourselves for these conflicts and realities, we will be in a better place to help the lost. 
 
Christianity is a mess. It is a mess because we are dealing with flawed humans and we are flawed humans.  There is no fault with the bible and its teaching. The fault is with us who have turned the word of God into a mirage of a painlessness utopia. 
 
We should be telling everyone the truth. Christianity is hard. You will be disappointed you will be hurt. The biggest blows will come from those you learn to love. You will fail you will hurt someone either out of ignorance or with intent. We need to tell each other and everyone we are not perfect, we don’t have all the answers. Please forgive us when we fall short. Do not judge Christ by what we do judge Christ by what he has done. Forgive us for our misrepresentation of the gospel. Let it be known we will make mistakes. Christ has made a way despite our errors to redeem the lost and restore the broken hearted. Let us tell the world we will mess up but there is still a Christ that can fix it, but only He can fix it. Let us stop trying to portray a clean conflict free Christianity. Let us display a true Christianity with all of its faults and short comings. Let us allow the God we proclaim to be glorified by His restorative power and grace. Let’s point others to the one that is perfect and true.
 
It is in our weakness that He is strong. It is in our faults that He shines. It is when we fall that He can pick us up. It is in our battles that He can bring peace it is. It is in our hurt that He can bring healing. It is in our defeat that He can bring victory. It is in all the things we hide that He is visible. Christianity is indeed a mess, But Jesus Christ died to clean the mess. To bring order to confusion peace to those at war and life to those that are dying. Jesus is in the business of cleaning up our mess. If we hide it, deny it, cover it or ignore it, Christ cannot be glorified by it.  Remember Christ came for those that need a savior, not for those who are saved.
  • Mark 2:17 (NKJV) When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”
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Joy

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Joy

You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11
 
“Fullness of joy” To me this short phrase defines the height, depth, and breadth of the fullness of life. This verse promises me what my heart longs for peace, fulfillment, and love.  A life without lack, full of all of the good things of life. A lack of need, want or desire. It means that I will have abundance in every area of my life. And if that is not enough it then says,” at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” When you’re on the path of God, you will be safe, provided for loved and cared for. He will give you pleasures above and beyond that. Have you ever received a better offer?
 
When you are in the presence of God almighty He will give you the fullness joy. All you have to do is walk the path He has provided for you.  The path is not a secret. It is not anything that requires great education, superior, intelligence or a unique revelation. The path is the same for everyone. 
 
6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6 (ESV)  
 
Jesus is the path. He is the way into the presence of God the Father. Jesus is the one that makes your joy full. It is He that provides all that you need. He is the secret in plain sight. He is the fullness of life. In the God Man, that is Jesus rests the the completion of man, and it is offered to you freely. You can have all the promises of God, but only through the path, that is Jesus. Celebrate the joy which is Jesus. Look around you will not find a better life.
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Stumbling Block

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Stumbling Block
 
“as it is written,
 
“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense;
 
and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.”” Romans 9:33
 
 Jesus is a stumbling block for people of all races. He is a conundrum for those who don’t believe in Him. They don’t know what to do with Him. Today Jesus is offensive to more and more people. Why would someone who did not kill anyone nor advocate violence become a stumbling block or an offense to anyone?  Jesus did not come as a revolutionary. He did not oppose or prefer any political system. He did not have financial power.  The influence He did have was confined to the spiritual lives of the Jewish people.
 
Jesus is the son of God. Is this why He is a stumbling block an offense? Because He claimed to be the son of God, the salvation of the world.  The answer to man’s problems. The first and the last the creator of all things. Deity, equal with God. He claimed to be the only way to the Father. Was it because He healed the sick raised the dead? Was it because of His resurrection? Is it because He is the sacrificial lamb for humanity? Was it because He called man to repentance and restoration with God? Is it because He challenged the ordained order of religious tradition? Is it because he is the Truth?
 
It is because He is the standard of truth. He is without blemish, He is the Holy One of God. He is a stumbling block because He is our salvation. He is the doorway to heaven. He is the only way to heaven. He is a stumbling block, an offense to man because he is the exact representation of righteousness. It is because we are sinful and He is not. It is because we love sin and hate righteousness. It is because we want to stay in our sin and be in the light. We want to be in both worlds simultaneously, and we can’t. It is because He is the eternal answer to the eternal question. Why are we here? We are here to be loved by Him. That is the only reason for our existence. And we can’t understand that. He is a stumbling block, and an offense to us because He wants to love us. 
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Modern Man

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Modern Man
 
21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. Romans 1:21-23
 
Modern man will not worship an image of an animal, or creeping thing. We are to educate and wise to indulge in this archaic practice. We are the most educated society in the history of the world. We no longer hold to the superstitions of the past.  If we are to worship anyone or anything it is ourselves. For the first time in human history, we have the ability to choose our own path. We can accomplish anything we desire. Isn’t that the mantra of our society? Reach for as much education as you can and it will open the doors to the highest levels of personal achievement. Education is the panacea of man. It will resolve all of man’s problems. For this reason, we no longer need or desire to pursue any God.
 
The most educated and technically advanced civilization of all time has been impotent in decreasing the evil of man.  Never in the annals of history have more babies been murdered than we have in this age of enlightenment. Wars litter our planet with corpses of the innocent. Every attempt at a solution to the world’s problems fail. It is not the uneducated that have lead us down this path. It is the educated that have dominated the leadership the world.
 
We have exchanged the immortal God for the flawed God of self-reliance. The evidence of past and present leadership has fulfilled this verse. It is not that these educated leaders don’t know of God. It’s that they deny Him.  We have discarded the wisdom of God for the fallacy of man and called it wisdom. How much longer will we pursue the ineptitude of humanity to provide salvation for itself?
 
No single person or government will ever be able to comprehend the complexities of the human condition. This inability condemns us to the repeated failure of leadership. It is not a lack of education, vision or passion that fails us. Only the God of creation has the capacity to see it all and provide for us all. Unless we return to the God of creation. We will never see peace. 
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Enlarge my Territory

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Enlarge my Territory
Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request. 1 Chronicles 4:10
“And God granted His request.” How, what did that look like? Does it mean that mystically without explanation it was accomplished? Did Jabez wake up the next day and find every boundary of His life magically multiplied?  NO!!!!!!!! Jabez did not wake up the next day and poof everything was enlarged. He had to find other people to help him.
The prayer of Jabez, if it is anything at all is a prayer to open the doorway of opportunities in your life. The Christian faith is described in the New Testament as a body. We are one body working in concert to do the will and purpose of God. What does the prayer of Jabez have to do with the body of Christ? You can’t do it alone. If you want to receive the blessings as Jabez did, you must do it in concert with other Godly people. Must they be Godly? Yes. Does God bless the ungodly? No!! He uses them. They are puppets He uses to bless and save His people. They are unknowing clogs in the will of God.
 We will not be granted our requests if we are an island unto ourselves. The greatest need of Christianity is for the body of Christ to work as the body of Christ. If you want the prayer of Jabez to be factual in your life find Godly people who will counsel you. So that you may receive the blessings of an enlarged territory. You just cannot do it alone.
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An exchange

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An exchange
“They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.”
Romans 1:25 NIV
In Genesis 1:1 it says “In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the earth.” This is a truth man once accepted. Now we have unsubstantiated ideologies usurping the truth. Once we had permanent standards of morality. Redefined morality now allows us to kill the unborn. Once we believed in living in eternity with a loving God. Now we are taught there is neither a God or an eternity. The epitome of life is money, power and prestige.
We worry more about the condition of the world than we do about the condition of man. The promise of a loving God has been replaced with the promise of emptiness. Many have are convinced this is all there is and hence live life with the consequences of that ideology. We have become people of no hope, no future, no possible victory. We have replaced the one true a God with the empty abyss of hopelessness. Or with powerless religions be it academia, intellectualism, or self-empowerment. We have become self-fulfilling, self-empowering, our own deity. We proclaim to be the ultimate intelligence in existence. Thus we have become the ultimate God. The most intelligent, educated, gifted, and powerful among us have failed to resolve a single human conflict. And still, we deny God. Humanity with all its technical advances is still a species trying to exert control over it self. After all of the paths, we have traveled we are no closer to making this a better world. We have not changed we still need the God of Genesis 1:1.
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Freedom of Choice

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Freedom of Choice

5 But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. 6 God “will repay each person according to what they have done.” 7 To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. 8 But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.Romans 2:5-8

 
We, citizens of the United States of America cherish our independence. We scream out to anyone who will listen, we have the right to make our own decisions. To decide for ourselves what to do with our lives. We aren’t so ecstatic about accepting responsibility for our actions. We behave as if we live in a vacuüm where our decisions and behaviors only affect ourselves.  God, through the writer of the book of Romans, agrees with at least part of that assertion.  We do indeed have the right to pursue any course of action we wish. We have the freedom do to do evil or do good. We have the freedom to persist in any action we choose. The only point of disagreement is that God will indeed hold you responsible for your actions. There will be a day of judgment, and you will be paid for what you have earned. Some to eternal life with God some to eternal judgment by God. We have the right to choose but with that freedom comes an inescapable consequence. Choose wisely whom you will serve.
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The Corridors of Death

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The Corridors of Death

“They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.” Romans 1:29-32 NIV

 

Every generation has claimed this verse as their own. Every generation comes up with more vile and despicable ways to sin. We have chosen to ignore the word of God and have created our own righteousness. We have traded the righteousness of God for the sinful nature of Man. We ignore the promises of God. What promises?  One day you will stand before God and answer to Him. It is an inescapable reality. If you are identified in this verse and are unrepentant and you claim independence from God, God you will grant your claim. You will have to defend yourself against the righteousness God of. You will not have another advocate. You will have to defend yourself through your independence. It will be your word against God. Your unrighteousness against the righteousness of God. There is no way that your rebellion against God will bring you the blessings of God. There is no way that your evil, sinful expression can bring you victory or peace. There is no way the sinful heart will see deliverance. It is illogical, impossible for you to expect good to come from evil. Evil begets evil, and the sum of that life is death apart from God. The end of your life will not arrive at the peace of non-existence. Your end will be the permanent justice of God. Repent, remove yourself from the corridors of death.

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One Day

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One Day
 
Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. Psalm 84:10
 
Somewhere along the life of Christianity we’ve allowed the devil to upstage this reality. I have lived the life the devil has to offer I have received the best he has, I know the lies he has perpetrated against us. It is better to enter into the kingdom God and be as far away from his presence as possible and still receive his glory. Than to be in the center of the devil’s demise.  We’ve allowed the lies of the enemy to be sold as truth and accepted as desirable accomplishments. 
 
Our country our world is in the shape it is in because we have allowed the lies of the enemy to be sold as truths.  There isn’t anything the enemy has sold us that compares to being in the presence of God.  All the world’s accomplishments combined can not equate to being in the presence of God.  not even for an instant.
 
God’s presence is where you are fulfilled to overflowing. It is where you will find love, peace, joy, happiness. It is where you will be filled with the water of life, and you’ll never be thirsty again. Today, now these things are available to those who choose Christ. You can have a meaningful, purposeful and joyous life now. You can have the love, security and the companionship of God now, here today. You can have everything that makes life worth living. You can experience the presence of God.
 
Then when we are in His permanent presence when He dwells with man. There will be no more war, famine, hate, disease. No more lack, hurt, loss, exclusion, rejection, loneliness or empty promises. You will have security, peace, love, and acceptance. You will be washed and cleansed from the filth of sin.  You will be given a new perfect body. You will share in His glory.
 
We need to turn the tide of evil and let the world know, God has a better way, a better life. Instead of selling the world the lies of the devil we need to give them the truth of the joy of living the life of Christ. It is better to live life in the love of Christ than to live the life of lust and lost without Christ. We have a much better life to live here and now and into eternity, Far better than anything the devil has ever offer. If we show the world what it is like to live one day in His courts, we will revolutionize the world. 
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Promises of God

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Promises of God.

15 Call upon Me in the day of trouble;

I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me.” Psalms 50:15

The bible is resplendent with promises of God that are as wonderful as this one. The question occupying my mind is. Am I putting myself in a position to receive the promises of God? Am I fulfilling the condition? The promises of God are not intended to be inspirational or uplifting they are to be lived. We cannot be the recipients of Gods promises if we don’t expect Him to honor them, or if we don’t fulfill the conditions. The promises of God are active and alive. but if we don’t engage them, they will be fruitless in our lives. If we don’t call on Him in the day of trouble, He can’t deliver us. If we don’t fulfill the conditions, the promise is void. How different would our lives be if we knew the promises of God? Then set out to fulfill the requirements.

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