Today's Topics: 1) Gospel - Lk 1:26-38 - The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin's name was Mary. And coming to her, he said, “Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.” But she was greatly troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a Son, and you shall name Him Jesus. He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give Him the throne of David His father, and He will rule over the house of Jacob forever, and of His Kingdom there will be no end. But Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?” And the angel said to her in reply, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the Child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God. And behold, Elizabeth, your relative, has also conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren; for nothing will be impossible for God.” Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her. Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary Most Blessed Mother, pray for us! Bishop Sheen quote of the day 2) Immaculate Conception, 490 - 494, Catechism of the Catholic Church, also: https://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07674d.htm 3) Why does Pope Francis target American Catholics https://www.tfp.org/why-does-pope-francis-target-american-catholics/?PKG=TFPE3193 4) Wearing a Rosary can make a Latino a target for police https://catholicreview.org/wearing-a-rosary-can-make-a-latino-a-target-for-police-historian-says/
Updated April 15, 2021: This topic of the "firmament" is also of great interest to atheists. A popular anti-creationist made a 40-minute YouTube video critical of this article. We may have hit a nerve. A favorite claim of many atheists is that the Bible teaches that the earth is surrounded by a solid domed sky. Instead, the Bible actually teaches that the firmament of Day Two is the crust of the earth, which divided water below the crust from the waters on the surface. Documenting this thereby rebuts that widespread false allegation. When we first published this article, that extra bonus was unexpected. So we've embedded and responded to Brett Palmer's video including by pointing out that the Babylonian creation epic, Enuma Elish, below, corroborates this understanding of the "firmament" as first referring to the earth's crust (i.e., biblically, to paradise, to heaven on earth). And we show that the Bible's Hebrew word for firmament, raqia, from the verb raqa, refers not only to the heavens above, but explicitly, to the crust of the earth. And we present the meaning of the Syrian geographical place name, Raqqa, and extend to antiquity the etymology of the English word, rock. At Real Science Radio (which airs on America's most-powerful radio station), we teach Dr. Walt Brown's Hydroplate Theory as the best understanding of the global flood, geology and the relevant scriptures. If the following is correct, all flood models based on the "canopy theory" and "plate tectonics" are false.On Day Two God Made the Crust of the Earth: Dr. Walt Brown's Hydroplate Theory helps to understand the global flood, geology and the relevant scriptures. On Day Two of creation, God formed the crust of the earth, called the firmament (Hebrew: raqia), which extended for miles above a worldwide subterranean ocean, and the crust of course also held waters upon its surface. If this is true, we would expect to read in the Bible that initially, the surface of the earth was covered only with water, and that then God made the earth's crust above the water. And consistent with the Hydroplate Theory (which describes a layer of water at least one-mile thick that was perhaps dozens of miles below the earth's surface), in fact the Bible teaches that God: - "In the beginning God created... the earth. ...and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters" (Genesis 1:1-2). Then God, - "laid out (raqa) the earth above the waters" (Psalm 136:6). And, - "by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth [was] standing out of water and in the water" (2 Peter 3:5). - "Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament" (Gen. 1:7). So, "The earth is the Lord's... For He has founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the waters" (Ps.24:1-2). Where the Water Came From: The global flood then began when those "fountains of the great deep were broken up" (Gen. 7:11) for the pre-flood earth had been "standing out of water and in the water, by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water" (2 Peter 3:5-6). Those waters had been stored up for global judgment if needed. For when "the heavens were made," the Bible says of much of the Earth's water back then that God "lays up the deep in storehouses" (Ps. 33:6-7; see also Prov. 8:27-28). For God created not only the surface waters, for He "made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters" (Rev. 14:7 KJV [as with many versions; some like the NKJV say "springs of water"). Dr. Brown's book, In the Beginning, demonstrates powerfully that the world's major geologic features flow logically from these initial conditions. But some creationists who disagree point out that, "God called the firmament Heaven" (Gen. 1:8), claiming that this firmament must be either the atmosphere (e.g., Henry Morris) or outer space (e.g., Russell Humphreys). Heaven on Earth, Hell Beneath: However at RSR we show that, whether figurative or literal, the crust of the earth is the boundary between heaven and hell. It is consistent with Biblical history that God would originally call the crust of the earth "heaven." For at creation, "He drew a circular horizon on the face of the waters, at the boundary of light and darkness. The pillars of heaven tremble (Job 26:10-11). And then, "He divideth (not raqa but raga) the sea with his power" (Job 26:12 KJV, Jubilee, Websters, etc.). God designated the region below the crust as the initial abode of those who may pass away. Hell is the holding prison for the unrepentant dead. "Hell from beneath is excited about you, to meet you at your coming" (Isa. 14:9; etc.). For the newly-made earth, the Lord logically referred to everything from the crust and above as heaven. Hence dozens of verses indicate that heaven also refers to the earth's atmosphere as in "rain from heaven," the "dew of heaven," "birds of heaven," "dust from the heaven," city walls "fortified up to heaven," smoke rises "to the midst of heaven," "the heavens are shut" in drought, "frost of heaven," "clouds of heaven," "snow from heaven," "hail from heaven," and the east winds "blow in the heavens." Thus even after the Fall, from Genesis and Job, through the Gospels, Acts and Revelation, the Bible continued to refer to the atmosphere, one molecule above the ground, as heaven. Apart from this understanding, a Bible student might think that while the surface of the Moon is in "heaven", that the paradise God made on the surface of the Earth is not. Also, the Bible's thirty-two occurrences of the phrase "kingdom of heaven" appear only in the royal Gospel of Matthew, and some of these (Mat. 11:12; 13:24 with Mat. 13:38; 16:19; Mat. 18:1 with Luke 9:46; etc.) locate this kingdom of "heaven" at least partially on earth. Lucifer Fell from Heaven on Earth: "God called the firmament Heaven," because the earth's crust formed the boundary between heaven and the future hell. The firmament also divided the waters of the earth (Gen. 1:2, 6) which even reserved the floodwaters of judgment below ground. For God "lays up the deep in storehouses" so "let all the earth fear the Lord," (Ps. 33:7-8), because He "shut in the sea with doors" until in the flood "it burst forth and issued from the womb," (Job. 38:8). But after the Fall, which likely occurred within a week of Creation, earth lost its heavenly designation, for apparently God will never fully replicate the first earth. Only two detailed Bible stories involve happenings that occured prior to the Fall, the creation account and the record of Lucifer's fall. And both of these events refer to earth as heaven. Isaiah 14:12 describes "Lucifer" as "fallen from heaven," yet Scripture places him on earth at the moment of his fall. "You were in Eden, the garden of God," (Ezek. 28:13). And "you have said in your heart: "I will ascend into heaven... I will ascend above the heights of the clouds," (Isa. 14:13-14). "Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, to the lowest depths of the Pit," (Isa. 14:15). Even though he was on earth, Lucifer fell "from heaven," because prior to the Fall, the surface of the earth was part of heaven's realm. * Bible Students Understand the Firmament, But Get Confused at 1:8: See this explained in this five-minute segment, in our 2-hour flood video, that begins at 48:30. Just click and the video will start at the correct point... Consider the flesh. Notice that just as gravity pulls our physical flesh down toward the center of the earth, the Fall created the world system which relentlessly pulls our spiritual flesh, drawing us down toward the lowest depths until death, and then the believer's released spirit soars upward to heaven, whereas the unbeliever's unfettered spirit falls downward, the firmament no longer keeping him out of Hades, thus his soul plummets into hell. C.S. Lewis wrote the preface to D.E. Harding's esoteric The Hierarchy of Heaven & Earth in which Harding wrote that "Hierarchy is... something like the ancient circles of heaven and earth and hell" (1952, p. 27), and that the "narrowest Hell would be widest Heaven if the Devil could only bring himself to turn round and look out from the Centre instead of in at himself" (p. 187). In the modern classic, Soul of Science, (1994, p. 38), Pearcey and Thaxton describe the view of Christian "medieval cosmology" that "at the very center of the universe was Hell, then the earth, then (moving outward from the center) the progressively nobler spheres of the heavens." Christians continue to affirm this hierarchy quoting Paul who was "caught up to the third heaven" (2 Cor 12:2), the first being the sky, the second is space, and the third God's habitation. King David even refers to the deep, as the "channels of the sea", where in the flood "the foundations of the world were uncovered", which were "the foundations of heaven" (2 Sam. 22:8, 16). Incidentally, the never-before-seen consequences of the flood caused the troubles David lists here. The lightnings, thunder, dark waters, thick clouds, darkness, volcanic eruptions, smoke, coal and fire, the earth shaking, and when the "channels of the sea appeared" only then the "foundations of the world were uncovered..." Moses Qualified His Last Four Uses of Firmament: Moses used the word firmament nine times in the creation account. He intentionally distinguished the last four occurrences from the first four, which all pivot around the central instance where God called the earth's firmament Heaven. Each of the four in the second grouping (Genesis 1:14, 15, 17, 20) is qualified separately by an exceptional repetition. The prepositional phrase "of the heavens" makes a distinction between the first firmament of the earth, and the second "firmament of the heavens." And if firmament means the "heavens," the very term "firmament of the heavens" would seem unnecessarily redundant, especially when repeated four times. However, the qualifier "of the heavens" is added so that the reader will not confuse this firmament of sky and space with the previous firmament of earth. Thus, readers alien to the notion of "heaven" on earth should nonetheless be able to separate the two firmaments, and understand God's meaning. Now, millennia after the Fall, God's own record of creation notwithstanding, sin has almost completely obscured the original perspective of the earth's surface as "heaven." The Things God Called Day and Earth: "God called the light Day." Yet like with the word firmament, Genesis has two very different meanings for light. Day 4 would be unintelligible without recognizing its initial meaning. "Then God made two great Days to rule the heavens"? No. The same is true for the dry land that "God called... Earth". If it had only one meaning, then the Earth would have been created on Day Two when the "Earth" appeared. Our Full Firmament Video: Above we pointed to a five-minute excerpt. Here's the full 30-minute segment out of our Global Flood video on raqia titled, Is the Day 2 firmament of Genesis the Earth's crust?: Kingdom of Heaven Lost on Earth: When man rebelled, earth became more like hell than heaven. Thus man's habitation on the surface of the earth lost its heavenly designation. The Bible describes Hell as below, bounded by the firmament. However in the beginning "God called the firmament Heaven" because that's where He placed Adam and Eve, above ground on the surface, in the heavens, in fellowship with Him, not in any other realm but in His kingdom, in heaven on earth. 2011 UPDATE - Atheists and the Solid Dome: YouTube anti-creationist Brett Palmer created a 40-minute rebuttal video (embedded here) of this little article on the firmament. Seems like we hit a nerve. Aside from Brett casting aspersions from the recently invented flat-earth myth, consider that as with many other atheists, he claims that the word firmament (Hebrew raqia) discredits the creation account by showing that Genesis cannot be God's Word because it merely echoes the ancient world's false belief in a solid domed sky above the earth. So, if raqia (firmament) refers not only to the heavens, but also to the crust of the earth, standing above a subterranean chamber of water, then atheists would lose a favorite argument. Raqia is the noun from the verb raqa meaning being hammered or spread out, as in working metal into a thin sheet or plate. "They beat (raqa) the gold into thin sheets" (Exodus 39:3). "The goldsmith overspreads (raqa) it with gold" (Isaiah 40:19; i.e., gold-plated). Similarly, God overspread the waters of the earth with the plates of the earth's crust, i.e., the firmament, what Walt Brown calls hydroplates. For "God made the firmament (raqia), and divided the waters which were under the firmament (raqia, the crustal plates) from the waters which were above the firmament" (Genesis 1:7). Please review again the verses listed below. For not only did God create "the sea and the fountains" (Rev. 14:7), if this understanding of raqia is is the Bible's actual meaning, then we would expect also to read that initially the surface of the earth was covered only with water, and that then God made the earth's crust above the water: - "In the beginning God created... the earth. ...darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters." Gen. 1:1-2 - God "laid out the earth above the waters" Ps. 136:6- "by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water" 2 Pet. 3:5 - "Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament." Gen. 1:7 "The earth is the Lord's... For He has founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the waters." Ps. 24:1-2 When the Bible specifically links raqa to the earth (as in the passages below), and because words typically have multiple meanings, it is extreme to insist that raqia cannot refer to anything but the heavens. Genesis was written back when pagans wondered what held up the earth. Perhaps it rested on the back of a tortoise, or on a pillar, or was held up by Atlas. Yet the most ancient Scripture teaches that God, "hangs the earth on nothing" (Job 26:7), which is visually consistent with modern astronomical observation. For just as the firmament of the earth holds up the mountains, so too, the firmament "of the heavens" is strong enough to hold the earth.God Raqa the EARTH! Firmament (raqia) is used "of the heavens" commonly and eleven times the Bible speaks of God stretching out the heavens. Then there is something not included in the above video. Another three times the Bible says that God raqa the earth itself. This shows, unlike as stressed on YouTube, that raqia very naturally also refers to the earth. Dr. Walt Brown's book lists these verses but I'll repeat them here for Mr. Palmer's consideration: To Him who laid out (raqa) the earth above the waters… Ps. 136:6 Thus says God the Lord, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread forth (raqa) the earth and that which comes from it… Isa. 42:5 “I am the Lord, who makes all things, who stretches out the heavens all alone, who spreads abroad (raqa) the earth by Myself;" Isa. 44:24 The firmament (raqia) of the creation account was iconic in ancient Israel, as the Tyndale Bible Dictionary says, "the firmament is always related to Creation." So the repetition and by two authors shows that the wording is deliberate. Thus these verses show an ancient awareness in Scripture that God raqa the Earth, that is, that His stretching out of the raqia of Genesis 1:8 readily refers to terra firma, or as the King James translators coined the word from the Latin, the firmament. Raqia and Heaven Both Refer Also to the Earth Raqa the Earth Heaven on Earth To Him who laid out (raqa) the earth above the waters... Ps. 136:6 "He drew a circular horizon on the face of the waters, at the boundary of light and darkness. The pillars of heaven tremble... He stirs up the sea with His power..." Job 26:10-12 Thus says God the Lord, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread forth (raqa) the earth... Isa. 42:5 "And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force." Mat. 11:12; "The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field;" and "the field is the world..." Mat. 13:24, 38 I am the Lord... who stretches out the heavens all alone, who spreads abroad (raqa) the earth by Myself Isa. 44:24 "And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven" Mat. 16:19 [and 18:18] Etymology of Raqia: The word raqia relates to raqa as sharia (law) relates to shara'a (to ordain or decree). Further, the ancient Middle East commonly ended names in "ia," and in this particular example of early Hebrew usage, raqia, though not a proper name, is the name for something created by raqa. (Atheist Brett Palmer, though not especially reliable, does specifically agree with this explanation in his follow-up video.) Pillars of Heaven: Regarding the crust of the Earth being referred to as heaven, consider the "pillars" which formed beneath the crust, as Dr. Brown describes it, at many "locations, the [subterranean] chamber's sagging ceiling pressed against the chamber's floor. These solid contacts will be called pillars." Thus since they supported the Earth's surface, they could be referred to as "pillars of heaven", just beneath the surface, which would "tremble" when they were crushed in God's judgment of the great flood of Noah's day, When God, "stirs up the sea with His power", as Job put it. "He drew a circular horizon on the face of the waters, at the boundary of light and darkness. The pillars of heaven tremble... He stirs up the sea with His power..." (Job 26:10-12). Earth's Foundation with Pillars Sunk into their Bases: This doesn't have to confuse Bible students. This five-minute segment at 1:04:22 depicts the pillars. Just click and the video will start at the correct point... * No One Before Or Since? Palmer says, virtually alleging omniscience for himself, that "no one before or since Enyart has ever asserted that two firmaments were created in the creation story." However, the nearly contemporaneous Babylonian creation epic states directly that heaven above and the "firm ground below" were called by the same name, that is, "heaven." First though consider Google. The claim then is that the term firmament refers to sky and space, and also to the sphere of the world. So, as the originator of this concept :) that firmament has two meanings, I am gratified that it's catching on. The Google results for "define:firmament" gives two meanings: The heavens or the sky, esp. when regarded as a tangible thing A sphere or world viewed as a collection of people * Not Half Bad and Not Half Right: Hey, for Google, that's not half bad, for the firmament (the Earth's surface) was called heaven so that Adam and Eve could be fruitful and multiply and fill the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth. Then regarding Palmer's claim that, "no one before or since Enyart has ever asserted that two firmaments were created," Dr. Brown's book credits "two pastors" with showing him this simple heaven-on-earth understanding of Genesis 1:8. The pastor before me later publishing a book on the topic: Paradise: Past, Present, and Future, and of course since then, Walt Brown too has adopted this understanding. >* Babylonian Creation Epic: The ancient pagan world had a corrupted memory of biblical accounts. Compare for example Egypt's sun god arising out of the waters of creation with, "God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, 'Let there be light.'" Likewise the flood of Noah's day is remembered in Babylon's Epic of Gilgamesh. Also, the seven tablets of Enuma Elish similarities to the seven days of the creation week include man's creation on the sixth day which is presented on the sixth tablet. The first creation tablet describes the "waters commingling as a single body" when "no marsh land had [yet] appeared", reminiscent of the firmament dividing the waters (Gen. 1:6-7) and the dry land appearing (Gen. 1:9). The truth reported by Moses in Genesis 1:8a, that God called the firmament heaven (referring to the crust of the Earth, i.e., God's kingdom of heaven, on Earth) is emphasized in the first lines of the first Babylonian creation tablet which state, "When on high the heaven had not been named, Firm ground below had not been called by that name." That is, before the term "heaven" even applied to sky and space, before that not even the firmament below had yet been called that same name, i.e., heaven. (This translation, "firm ground below had not [yet] been called by that name", appears in old-earth Oxford Prof. John Lennox' book Seven Days that Divide the World. Importantly, after discussing this matter personally with Dr. Lennox, RSR can report that he does not agree with our Genesis 1:8 interpretation, so in no way would he publish a biased translation to make our point.) For as Moses wrote, "God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament... And God called the firmament Heaven... Then God said, '...let the dry land appear.'" So whereas atheist video maker Palmer (see above) says that "no one before or since Enyart has ever asserted that two firmaments were created in the creation story", Brett can now consider that this Babylonian Enuma Elish creation epic parallels the Hydroplate Theory's understanding of the firmament as referring also, and originally, to the "firm ground below" the heavens. And thus, because God raqa the Earth, by creating the raqia, that is, the solid rock crust of the Earth, therefore, the etymology of the English word rock can now be traced back much further than the medieval Latin rocca. Not surprisingly then, studying geography we find that root word in the names of various ancient places in the region. For example, in 2015 Raqqa hit the headlines as the capital city of the Islamic terrorist group ISIS. An accurate understanding of Genesis is essential for understanding early history. Thus we can now trace the etymology of our English word rock to that very Epic of Gilgamesh flood account, with Gilgamesh being the king of Uruk, located in the south of the modern nation with a name that means "deeply rooted, well-watered", for God placed the water deep under the raqia which explains the name of the ancient place, Iraq. (See also Bob's draft comments on the Enuma text.) * Countries, Regions, and Peoples Ending in A and IA: Why do so many place names end in ia? God raqa the raqia to give mankind a place to live on the face of the Earth. In the web's most complete list of place names that end in ia, see about 120 significant geographical regions that end with -a or -ia, and others that sound like they end in ia, like Kenya and Libya. (RSR maintains this list.) Consider also, not unlike the city of Raqqa and the country of Iraq, the continent of Africa may have a related etymology, and consider also that in Arabic afar means dust, earth. And the names of many lands that do not end in -ia, as Egypt, still give a nod to the suffix when referencing their people, as with Egyptian, Akkadian, Persian, and the more modern Caucasian, with -ian equating also to the -yan as discussed at rsr.org/yan such as Aryan (meaning from the Sun land).* Seven-Day Week: The worldwide use of a seven-day week results from the creation account. And those seven days are named for the heavenly bodies (Saturn, Sun, Moon, etc.) as God said, "Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years." (On a related topic we interviewed Scientific American editor and atheist Michael Shermer for Real Science Radio. That full show is so much fun to listen to.) "Dr. Shermer, while much of the ancient world was worshiping heavenly bodies, could you at least agree that the Bible is correct on page one, where it states that the Sun is a light?" [Moses was correct also when he taught in Deuteronomy that the planets and stars are not gods and should not be worshiped.] "So can you agree that the Bible is correct in Genesis chapter one, that the Sun is not a god, but a light?" To which Shermer infamously replied, which you can hear in this 73-second excerpt (and transcript) that the sun is not a light. Wow. It's often difficult to have a reasonable discussion with atheists. Also, the worldwide use of blood sacrifices resulted from God commanding Adam and Noah to sacrifice animals prefiguring the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God. * A Solid Dome Sky Belief Widespread Yet Not Intuitive: As Wikipedia reports, "The notion of the sky as a solid object (rather than just an atmospheric expanse) was widespread among both ancient civilizations and primitive cultures, including ancient Greece, Egypt, China, India, native Americans, Australian Aborigines, and also early Christians. It is probably a universal human trait to perceive the sky as a solid dome." Retrieved 8-27-11. However, with the many varied movements in the heavens of the Sun, Moon, planets, stars, comets, and meteorites, it's not intuitive that so much of the whole world would end up believing that the Earth had a solid-domed sky. Except, of course, if the ancients who populated the world after the global flood were misunderstanding the raqia of Day Two as referring to the heavens instead of to the crust of the earth. Conclusion: So, the Bible speaks of Earth using the same term, raqia, as for the firmament "of the heavens" (clarified that way in Genesis 1). Yet when the paradise of Eden and God's Kingdom of Heaven on Earth became "filled with violence," mankind began to forget that God made earth as part of His Kingdom of heaven. Thus, what changed was the common use of the term heaven for the Earth. © 2007 - 2017 Bob Enyart, RSR.org.com * RSR's Global Flood and Hydroplate Theory: Here's our best-selling flood video which is available also on DVD, Blu-ray, and download. We hope you enjoy this: Email: From Walt Brown to Bob Enyart on March 22, 2005: "Dear Bob, I like your proposal concerning Genesis 1:8a, and after much thought, have decided to include it [in the 8th edition of In the Beginning]. I have credited Pastor Diego Rodriguez and you as the originators of this very attractive explanation. ... Thank you for sending me your explanation. -Walt" Biologos: Note that Francis Collins' theistic-evolution group BioLogos uses their misunderstanding of the firmament in their effort to diminish the authority of Genesis. For example, "Genesis... says things that are at odds with what modern people know to be true of the world... The other cosmologies from the ancient world depict some solid structure in the sky. The most natural explanation of the raqia is that it also reflects this understanding. There is no indication that Genesis is a novel description of the sky." In other words, Collins claims that Genesis' presentation of the firmament [in contrast to the biblical and historical insights above] equates to that of pagan myths. As old-earth Christians, they therefore reject the global flood and many other biblical teachings. See this explained in our Trading Genesis video: Bio: Bob Enyart co-hosts Real Science Radio and pastors Denver Bible Church. Bob first had a technical career working: - at McDonnell Douglas Helicopter Company on the Army's Apache helicopter - as a systems analyst for "Baby Bell" U S West - as a program manager for Microsoft, and - as a senior analyst for PC Week Bob became a believer in 1973, entered full-time Christian work in 1989, and in 1991 began hosting a daily show on America's most powerful Christian radio station, the 50,000-watt AM 670 KLTT. In 1999, the elders and pastor of Denver's Derby Bible Church ordained Bob into the ministry. In 2000, Derby planted Denver Bible Church with Bob as pastor and in 2015 as a host of Real Science Radio Bob was inducted into the Creation Science Hall of Fame. You can see Bob Enyart's materials online or call 1-800-8Enyart. If you enjoyed this article, you may also want to read Why Canaan was Cursed?, Polygamy in the Bible, and Slavery in the Bible. And you can hear Bob at RealScienceRadio.com!
If you keep building, God will keep prospering. If you seek the Lord and do what He asks you to do to build His Kingdom, you will prosper; it's a biblical principle. Discover more at https://www.jentezenfranklin.org/?cid=JFPC Watch and subscribe on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/jentezenfranklinmedia Find Pastor Jentezen on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jentezen/ Find Pastor Jentezen on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JentezenFranklin Find Pastor Jentezen on Twitter: https://twitter.com/jentezen Giving: https://jentezenfranklin.org/donate/?cid=JFPC Find Free Chapel on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/freechapel Find Free Chapel on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/freechapel Download the Free Chapel App: https://www.freechapel.org/app
This meditation takes us from Job's lament (and ours) of wondering if our lives really matter to reminding us that there is a deeper purpose to our lives. This meditation shows us God's view of us - that so much more is accomplished than we reaalize when we give no matter how we feel, when we trust God even though we don't see why we should. His Kingdom operates when we choose to trade our lack for His presence. Daylight Meditations is a daily podcast from CFO North America. Please visit CFONorthAmerica.org to learn more about our retreats, and online courses. If you are encouraged by this podcast, please consider supporting us. Contributors: Michelle DeChant, Adam Maddock, and Phil Reaser
In Philippians 3:8 (NIV) the Bible says, ”What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ” The message series Losing, Sacrificing, Suffering and Dying continues with Reverend Lindsay preaching about the “Power of Sacrifice”. Sacrifice is power. We as Christians often have taken for granted the power of God. How that power dwells in us.When we speak Heaven should hear, when we speak satan should fear, when we speak evil should clear. That type of power is what we carry in Jesus' name. There are three powerful effects of sacrifice.Sacrifice causes people to follow, it causes people to be convinced about you,and lastly causes people to be committed to you. Let us walk in the glorious power of God through our sacrifices for Him and His Kingdom's sake!
Leaders from nearly every nation on the planet began gathering today in Dubai at the United Nations Climate Change Conference to confront global warming. Some have taught this is the beginning of The Final 7 Years which would mean Jesus will establish His Kingdom on earth by 2030. Are we really 7 years from the return of Jesus? All of this and more today on The Endtime Show. --------------- 📚: Check out Jerusalem Prophecy College Online for less than $60 per course: https://jerusalemprophecycollege.com 📱: It's never been easier to understand. Stream Endtime+ and access exclusive content: https://watch.endtime.com/browse 🏥: Try Hope Health Share, an affordable, alternative solution: https://hopehealthshare.com ☕️: First Cup Coffee: use code ENDTIME to get 10% off: https://www.firstcup.com ⭐️: Birch Gold: Claim your free info kit on gold: https://www.birchgold.com/endtime 🥩: Back Yard Butchers: Save an extra 20% off your entire order (use code “ENDTIME”): https://www.backyardbutchers.com/endtime Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Towards the end of the liturgical year, we are reminded of the difficulties that will come for the disciples of Christ. And Jesus asks us to persevere, to keep up the good work. Christian optimism is not passive, Chesterton explains, but active. We don't just expect things will turn out well. We help God to bring His Kingdom and make it happen.
On Sunday, December 3 the liturgical year begins anew with the first week of Advent. Our hope this Advent is that we might find ourselves with renewed excitement for the Lord's arrival. Advent is a season of waiting, longing, and hoping for the coming of our God. It is a time to resist the urge to rush Christmas. It is a time to reflect on God's Kingdom that is already and still yet to come. We hope that as you listen to the sermons, light Advent candles, participate in events like Advent Morning Prayer, and engage in the Advent Guides; God might open your eyes and ears to His Kingdom.Learn more and find ways to engage the season at atltrinity.org/advent!
On Re:Center Podcast this week Zac Whitfield and John Mohrbacher dig into Ephesians 3:10-13. Follow along with the Ephesians sermon series. They will be using the discovery Bible study method to learn to not just hear but obey what God is teaching us or as Jesus says, "Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.” (John 14:21)Also at times in this series, we will discuss in depth various aspects Paul talks about in Ephesians around what life practically looks like as we follow Jesus and live our lives joining His Kingdom work.Music by:Jordan Brown Music
Fig Tree Books & More location info Fig Tree Books & More on Instagram Well hey there! Hello to you today and I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, spent time resting and also able to spend time with loved ones, and of course had the chance to express your thankfulness for what God has done and will do in your life. He is good and He acts out of His lovingkindness toward His children, and that is something that we should never stop being thankful for. I really do believe that Christians ought to be the most thankful people on this planet. Thanksgiving is a time to express that thankfulness in all sorts of ways, and I do hope yours was wonderful. I am thankful for you. You're listening to The Burt (Not Ernie) Show, part of the Spark Network, now playing in the Edifi app. Today's episode is sponsored by Fig Tree Books & More, located in Branson. If you are planning a trip to the Branson area at any point in the future, I hope you get the chance to swing by Fig Tree Books. You will not regret it, that I can promise you! It's more than a bookstore, it's an experience with some of the most rock-solid, Jesus loving believers I have ever met. I'll have the link to their Instagram here in the show notes as well as a link to their exact address. Fig Tree Books & More, thank you for the work you are doing for the Kingdom, for every prayer you pray with customers, for every product selection you make with such care, for reaching your community and for being a haven for those visiting the Branson area. May the Lord bless you and the work of your hands in ways beyond your wildest imagination. I am thankful for you! This is episode number 167, and today we are looking at the book of Ezra. The Amplified Bible is what I'll be referencing for this episode, and I'm going to read a couple of verses from Ezra chapter 7. Verses 9b and 10 say this: …because the good hand of his God was on him. For Ezra had set his heart (resolved) to study and interpret the Law the the LORD, and to practice it and teach His statutes and ordinances in Israel. Ezra lived in captivity in Babylon, so think about Daniel and his life in Babylon and Nehemiah and his calling to work on rebuilding the Temple at the end of this season of Israel's captivity. Ezra was alive in this same era. He left Babylon and traveled for months to get to Israel, according to verse 9 of Ezra chapter 7. Months of travel. What do we do for months? Like, what's worth that to us? Granted this was normal in that day, travel from Iraq (which is modern day Babylon) to Israel just took that long, and it doesn't take that long today, but it is worth thinking about, this idea of what is worth a long journey for us? And have you considered as of late that you are on a long journey? A journey home, to eternity with Jesus. You are on a long trek, you are a pilgrim on your way to your final destination. We as Christians are, in a way, sort of like Ezra. And the destination is more than worth the long, hard road we walk to get there. When the Temple was rebuilt at the end of this time of captivity, as we see in Ezra chapter 6, the Temple was completed and dedicated and Passover observed in the homeland of the Jewish people once again, then we move into chapter 7 and we see Ezra making the journey to Jerusalem. The promise in these verses is that when we, God's people who bear His name, have the good hand of our God on us (not the heavy hand of the Lord on us, as we find in the Bible at times, but the good hand of our God), we are able to do hard things for His Kingdom and His purposes. Ezra had set his heart to study and interpret the Law, the first five books of the Bible written by Moses, the Torah. How about us? Are we set like that? Do we have our hearts set on studying the Bible? It's easy to answer, yes or no, there is no middle ground or wiggle room on this…the question begs an answer, an immediate and honest one. Is my heart set on studying God's Word? Yes or no. Can you be brave enough to answer this honestly? And then, be brave enough to ask the Lord to make your heart set upon this, if the answer is no…and make it even more set upon it if the answer is yes? I'm not bagging on anyone, but I am asking an important question that warrants and honest and introspective answer because Jesus held back nothing to save us from death and hell, and He is worth everything, including our hearts set on knowing Him better and better day by day as a result of studying the Bible. The Amplified says “resolved”. Ezra had set his heart resolved to study and interpret the Law of the Lord. How resolved are we in our study of God's Word? Ezra made this long journey to a place that had been decimated and trashed during this terrible exile season in Israel's history, and at this time it was on the uptick. He was going back home, but to a home that had been broken down alongside a people who had been broken down. Sometimes the journey we make in life is alongside those who have also been broken down. You know, we want those strong leaders to lead us…and I think when we are strong in the Holy Spirit, when we are weak then God is strong in us and through us, that's good strength. But it doesn't always look pretty and it isn't always neat and tidy and polished the way the world tells us our leadership ought to look. Looks don't seem to matter as much to God as they do to man, to you and to me. Good leadership, chosen and appointed by God, may not look shiny and lovely. Good leadership may be the guy next to you, walking the same path you're walking, who has answered God's call to leadership. It may be the lady who is just a few steps beyond you on the road of life, she's far from perfect and she's got her hair in a messy bun or a banana clip and she may be walking with a limp…but she's going where God says to go, following His leading as she obeys His call to lead others. You want leaders who are good followers, who follow Jesus closely and who obey quickly, immediately, because otherwise they're not fit to lead anybody and they know it. What might happen if that kind of leadership became what we as the Church look for rather than wanting only leaders who look like the world, act like the world, and run the Church like a business, like the world. I have been young and now, I'm getting older and I've seen both kinds of leaders. And I know which kind have impacted me the most with the things of the Lord, and it's not the polished and social media post perfection kind of ones who made real impact. It's the one just a few steps ahead, been through some stuff in life, and they just keep on loving, serving, trusting, following, obeying and honoring God with the whole of their messed up, messy life. Ezra may have been somewhat weary before his journey even got started. Anybody else ever feel like that? Lord, I'm so tired from this…and now You are asking me to start this next leg of my race when I'm feeling weary? Sometimes that is how it goes. I'm not against rest, but I think I can honestly say that we can have sabbath rest, resting in Jesus, even while walking the path He's called us to. How many Bible characters were totally ready for the task God called them to? The blessing came from their obedience. Lack of obedience would not have yielded the same degree of blessing…or likely much blessing at all. Sometimes we feel weary before the journey begins. Others were probably weary too, and Ezra as a leader was dealing with his weariness and theirs. It can be hard to lead weary people. Not always, but at times our flesh cries out for ease and after a long season of reign by an oppressor, some happy news may have been pretty appealing. But an honest study of the first five books of the Bible would come with conviction and a real hard and honest look in the mirror. Weary people can want an answer and a solution more than they want to be taught, and Ezra was called in verse 10 to teach Israel what the Bible had to say. The point here is that Ezra did not have the easy street assignment, and even when he was weary, he still obeyed. That's the mark of a mature believer. Ezra had a tough role to play, but he did it. Do we want the good hand of God on our lives? Do we really? Verse 25 tells us that Ezra was tasked with appointing magistrates and judges in accordance with God's wisdom and instruction. He was to appoint those who knew the laws of God, and he was told to teach anyone who did not know God's law. If hard times come - and I mean hard hard times, not so so hard times, but hard hard times, if those times come, do you realize there may be a special role for you provided you know the Bible well? I'm serious about this! Do you know any part of your Bible well enough to instruct someone about it? Over a cup of coffee, as part of a Bible study group, in a group text of Christian friends. The need may well arise. Are we ready if it does? Because when hard hard times come, people tend to land in one of two camps, and it's pretty distinct. They either want to know more about God, what the Bible says, how to pray, or they get hard hearted and want to shut God out while blaming Him for everything that has gone wrong. But those that will want to know how to seek and to find the Lord in the hard hard times may need someone to show them the way, to explain the Bible to them, to pray with them. Could that someone be you? Now these may not seem like promises at first glance, the verses I'm sharing today. But I think they actually are. Can you imagine receiving the call of the Lord to teach people about His word in hard times, in a season that could be considered the tail end of a long spiritual famine? Church attendance in the United States post COVID has dropped and remained below 50% for the first time since attendance began being tallied or monitored in our country. It's below and it's staying below. How's that for the mark of a spiritual famine? I think we're in one in the US. It's also a bit of an indictment on us as a so-called Chrsitian nation. Where will you and I land in this post-Christian era in which we live? Will we be ready to teach others what the Bible says, or fail to be ready? And as far as hard times go, the writing is on the wall, so to speak, when the people in a nation have turned away from, even against, the God of the Bible. We know what happened to such nations in the past. We know from the book of Revelation what will happen to those who deny the Lord God Almighty in the future. And so we understand that in our day, hard times may come, probably will come sooner rather than later. We also know that persecution grows Jesus' Church. Hard times drive people to their knees in prayer. And we have this moment, this era, to ready ourselves to serve God in like manner as Ezra when those days come to pass. But only if we know His Word! We cannot teach what we do not know! In the new year, I'm planning to start sharing monthly Bible reading plans and some pdf Bible study tools and do a weekly study of the psalms in my private prayer group on Facebook, working through all 150 psalms week by week and praying based on what we find in those passages. These are just a couple of ways I hope to encourage people to get in the Word and to learn it, to live it, and to know it well enough to teach it to others. Which is discipleship 101 and Titus 2 ministry in a nutshell. On my other podcast, The Prayer Podcast, this week I'm going to share and pray from Ezra chapter 8, a prayer for protection that God answered powerfully, you can find this in verses 21-32. And also, side note, on TPP soon we will start a series on the NT book of James and it's going to be a good prayer series because the book of James brings life change, like, every single time we read it and apply it and study it and believe it and pray that what it says will become our reality. I'd love to have you join us for that series on The Prayer Podcast. But when we look at Ezra 8, verse 23 from the Amplified, we find this: So we fasted and sought help from our God concerning this matter and He heard our plea. And verse 31 - We set out from the river Ahava on the twelfth day of the first month to go to Jerusalem: and the hand of our God was upon us, and He rescued us from the hand of the enemy and those who lay in ambushes along the way. Does God answer prayer? Yes Does God still in our day and age answer prayer? Yes Can we really expect Him to help us? Yes Can we talk to Him about anything and everything, specific matters that concern us and not just high and lofty spiritual things? Yes Can we do what He is calling us to do and make the impact that He wants us to make (or rather, to allow Him to make the impact He wants to make through us)? Yes Can we get to our destination safely, protected from marauders, fully able to do what comes next once we get to that place? Yes Can we ask Him to see us safely all the way home? Yes More than just a single promise from the book of Ezra, preparing for this episode has shown me that the whole of Ezra, the whole book is God's promises being fulfilled. It's proof positive that God keeps His promises, every single one, in perfect detail. And it's a call to be reconciled to God. Our reconciliation should lead us to trust more. If it doesn't, are we really reconciled? I'm not fully reconciled to someone if I do not trust them. The two go together. Be reconciled to God and trust Him completely. Pray to Him and listen for His answer to your prayers. Be like Ezra. That's all for this episode of The Burt (Not Ernie) Show. Thanks for joining me today and don't forget to check out Fig Tree Books & More when you're in the Branson area. See you next time. Bye bye!
By Jorge de Campos in Lawton, OK - November 25, 2023 - We need a purpose, we need a goal to work to. God has made us this way and God has a purpose for us in His Kingdom. 1Co 2:9 But as it is written: "EYE HAS NOT SEEN, NOR EAR HEARD, NOR HAVE ENTERED INTO THE HEART OF MAN THE THINGS WHICH GOD HAS PREPARED FOR THOSE WHO LOVE HIM."
Today we are talking about the pleasure of participating with God in His Kingdom building. He chose to invite us to participate. We cannot just be believers in Jesus, we need to be His followers. And it means involving every aspect of our lives. Our faith is about the delight to be where Jesus is. He invites us to love – to let Him love through us! And one of the best ways to love God, is to love others in His Name. So, my invitation to you today is to pray about it as you listen to Ros and me. Have a conversation with God about where He would have you focus your prayers, your time, and yes, your money. Listen to our vision and ask yourself if and how you want to be a part of it. My pastor says the same parting words each week at the end of the service at church. He says, “life is short, and we do not have much time to gladden the hearts of those who travel with us. So, be swift to love, and make haste to be kind.” It is a blessing that is inspired, originally, by the words of my French compatriot, Henri Frederic Amiel (1821-1881). This is what we are inviting you into. As we approach the end of another incredible year, we wanted to extend our deepest gratitude for your continued support and partnership in spreading the gospel message to countries all around the world. It is truly an honor to serve alongside each one of you! Don't forget! Go to gospelspice.com/Christmas for a LOT of FREE and beautiful inspirations to make this Christmas your most Christ-centered and Gospel-spiced one! And also, brand new line of Christmas merch at gospelspice.com/merch - don't miss out! In this special Giving Tuesday edition, we want to highlight the pleasure and privilege we have of participating with God in His kingdom building. God invites us to love others and to let Him love others through us. We heard the God-honoring, heartwarming story of a mother and son in Canada who have been faithfully listening to the podcast. Through the message of Gospel Spice, this young boy's faith has blossomed, and his relationship with God has become a source of hope and inspiration. It is stories like these that drive us to pour our hearts and souls into what we do. To continue expanding the impact of Gospel Spice, we have exciting plans for the future. We are committed to deepening personal intimacy with God and loving others as ourselves. We will continue producing impactful podcast episodes and engaging Bible studies, but we also have plans to develop new formats such as courses and expand our YouTube channel. Furthermore, we are laser-focused on combating human trafficking and supporting organizations that are making a difference in the lives of the most vulnerable. However, to achieve these goals and continue reaching even more lives, we need your support. There are several ways you can partner with us: PLAY GOSPEL SPICE FORWARD: 1. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and follow us on social media: By doing so, you will stay connected with our latest content, receive inspiration, and be part of our growing community. YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/gospelspice Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gospelspice Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/gospelspicelife/ 2. Subscribe to our newsletter: Our newsletter includes exclusive content, free gifts, and updates on what God is doing through Gospel Spice. Don't miss out on these valuable resources! PRAY GOSPEL SPICE FORWARD: 3. Prayer: We value your prayers immensely. Please pray for our ministry, our team, and all those touched by the Gospel Spice message. Let us know how we can pray for you as well. Prayer is a powerful way to make a difference! AND FINALLY, PAY GOSPEL SPICE FORWARD: 4. Make a donation: Your financial contribution plays a vital role in sustaining and expanding the impact of Gospel Spice. Our platform relies on your generous gifts to deliver the message of the gospel to thousands of people worldwide. Your donation is tax-deductible in the US. Visit https://www.gospelspice.com/payitforward. We are excited to announce that a matching donor has come forward to encourage others to give generously to Gospel Spice. From now until December 31st, this generous donor will match all donations made during this period. Your gift has the potential to make double the impact! To make a donation, simply visit https://www.gospelspice.com/payitforward. We accept donations through PayPal, Venmo, and all major credit cards. Every dollar counts, and we sincerely appreciate both one-time and recurring monthly gifts. If you are able to make a recurring monthly gift, it helps us plan our resources more effectively. We also want to express our gratitude for the immense support we have received thus far. To show our appreciation, we have some exciting donor giveaways lined up for the end of the year. Ros is offering a set of her gorgeous, hand-made earrings; I have personally selected four inspiring books to give away to one lucky winner among our donors. As an extra special touch, we will also include a Gospel Spice tote bag. These tote bags were a hit at a recent conference and can be purchased on our website. Additionally, for those who donate $20 or more between now and Christmas, we have prepared a Jesse Tree, which allows you to journey through the Advent season with a Scripture verse and ornament for each day. It is our little way of saying thank you for your generous support. Please know that your donations are stewarded responsibly. Last year alone, Gospel Spice donated over $5,000 to these incredible causes. Our lean budget ensures that your contributions are utilized exclusively for spreading the gospel and making a tangible impact. As we look ahead to 2024, we humbly acknowledge that our ministry is a work in progress. We embrace the willingness to make mistakes and grow alongside those who desire a deeper intimacy with God. We are committed to coming alongside you, our Gospel Spice community, in this beautiful journey together. So, here is a reminder of how you can PLAY, PRAY, and PAY Gospel Spice forward today: ✅ Subscribe to our YouTube channel, follow us on social media, and most importantly, sign up for our newsletter. By doing so, you'll stay connected with exclusive content, free gifts, and prayer support. ✅ Make a donation to support our work. Gospel Spice is diligently stewarding funds to maximize our impact. All donations are tax-deductible in the US, and a matching donor will double your contribution made until December 31st! Go to https://www.gospelspice.com/payitforward ✅ Explore our newly developed digital workbooks and courses. These resources deepen your intimacy with God and equip you for a deeper walk of faith. Thank you once again for your unwavering support and partnership. We are truly grateful for the privilege of serving alongside each one of you! May God bless you abundantly as we celebrate this season of giving and contending for the Gospel together! THERE ARE SEVERAL WAYS TO PARTNER WITH GOSPEL SPICE TODAY! First, PAY Gospel Spice Forward: Give a tax-deductible gift so others can experience our ministry for free, just like you! You can pay it forward with any debit, credit card, or via PayPal. See below for more details about your impact. Also, PLAY Gospel Spice Forward: SHARE the podcast and the studies with your friends and family. FOLLOW, RATE & REVIEW on your favorite podcast app (leave a comment + a star rating on Apple Podcast, Spotify, Pandora, IHeart, Google Podcast, etc…). It REALLY is the best way to help others find this content-rich podcast. And, last but not least, PRAY Gospel Spice Forward: We pray for you weekly. We covet your prayers for our ministry, the thousands we reach, and our team! Contact us to let us know you are praying for us! NEW! Another way to partner with us is to purchase our workbooks and online Bible studies. We keep them at the lowest possible cost, but they require a lot of work from us! For example, - a complete Bible Study requires an average of 500 man-hours. - a workbook for a series requires almost 100 man-hours. MORE ABOUT PARTNERING WITH US FINANCIALLY: Gospel Spice Ministries is a non-profit organization registered under the tax-exempt 501c3 status. Our goal is to provide in-depth, high-quality, free Bible resources for all. They are free, but expensive to create! We need your financial support to keep producing and distributing them. Please pay Gospel Spice forward today! For example, a podcast episode takes close to 10 hours of work (and we release 2 each week). They come to you completely free, but we would truly love your support. We want the money to go to those who really need it. Once our operating costs are paid, 100% of your donation is redistributed to our partners who fight human trafficking. Each year, we aim to give as much as we can. For example, Stephanie works more than full time for Gospel Spice, entirely for free. All board members and volunteers are donating time. We limit our operational expenses to the bare minimum. Your pay-it-forward donations are tax-deductible under IRS Section 170. We want to be the best possible stewards of your financial support. Thank you! Go to gospelspice.com for more, and go especially to gospelspice.com/podcast to enjoy our guests! Interested in our blog? Click here: gospelspice.com/blog Do you enjoy Gospel Spice? Then let's deepen our relationship! There are 4 very simple ways to do that, and it would truly mean the world to us. 1- If you've enjoyed this episode, you will love receiving our newsletter. It contains value-packed free gifts and rich content each month. It's at gospelspice.com/signup. There is always something new and exciting happening around here, and I don't want you to miss out! Sign up at Gospelspice.com/signup 2- Did you know Gospel Spice has a YouTube Channel? There's exclusive content there too. So, join Gospel Spice on YouTube! It's at https://www.youtube.com/gospelspice 3- Also please give us a star rating and a comment on your podcast listening app. Your reviews actually really do make a difference to help others discover and experience Gospel Spice. You would be surprised how helpful these are! So please leave a star rating and a review of a sentence or two. Thank you! 4- As always, we are praying for you! You can confidentially email us your prayer requests and praise items at the email address email@example.com. It is our privilege to pray for you! So, would you please invest 3 to 5 minutes of your time, maybe even right now, to do one (or more!) of the following suggestions: 1- signup on our website for our newsletter to receive gifts you're going to love - at Gospelspice.com/signup 2- find us on YouTube, and see what content we've put together to help you grow closer to Jesus - at https://www.youtube.com/gospelspice 3- rate Gospel Spice on your listening app – it's one of the easiest ways to share the gospel! 4- and finally, tell us how we can pray for you! Go to gospelspice.com for more, and go especially to gospelspice.com/podcast to enjoy our guests! Interested in our blog? Click here: gospelspice.com/blog What matters to us here at Gospel Spice is to create a place where people who seek deeper intimacy with Jesus, will find Him. We want a warm, welcoming atmosphere to journey ever deeper into the heart of God. We believe it is the ultimate calling of the Christian life, and I like to summarize it with my motto, God's glory, our delight. That is why we invite you to “taste and see” that the Lord is good. And we have been doing this every day since 2019. We need YOU to keep Gospel Spice alive and growing. Financially speaking, we rely on people who understand this vision and who understand that we cannot function without a minimum budget. We run an extremely tight budget. For example, I work full time but don't draw a salary. And yet, we have expenses – for example, the equipment and technology we use, and also the wonderfully gifted staff who make it possible to deliver high quality content all around the globe, and then the necessary occasional promotional budget to make it possible to be discovered by those who seek to live a life spiced with the gospel of Jesus Christ. We need your help. So we would love for you to consider if this ministry is blessing you to pay gospel spice forward. You can partner with us monthly with 10, 25, 50, 100, a month, or you can make one donation, once. And because we are a register nonprofit organization in the United States under the status of a 501c3 charity, it means that the amount that you pay to gospel spice is fully tax deductible. Completely tax deductible. So you're even saving money as you invest in gospel spice ministries. It is an eternal investment, and we are very grateful to you for it. Now it's very important to us that we give back as much as possible from what you give us. And so we commit to giving the majority of what we receive, once all of our administrative costs are paid, to organizations that fight human trafficking on the front line. There are many worthwhile causes in the world, so why this one? Because I have always personally felt deep compassion for victims of human trafficking – maybe because I have never been its victim myself, so I feel a responsibility to help those less fortunate than me. Also, because Jesus tells us to love our neighbor. Human trafficking is modern day slavery, and that is something that revolts the heart of God. We want to play our part in raising awareness and then financially supporting those who fight this great evil. So, we do some due diligence. We pick organizations who have proven themselves trustworthy of our support. And then we give money to these Christians organizations that fight human trafficking. So would you consider paying us forward at gospelspice.com/payitforward? Your hard-earned money is always well used at Gospel Spice. Ultimately, you are giving back to the Kingdom, a portion of what Jesus has given you. We are well aware of the privilege to steward your partnership. And my prayer is always that you will find your own life spiced with the gospel as you partner with us to flavor the lives of those around us, near and far, with the spice of the gospel. Support us on Other, PayPal and Other!
God the Creator will someday "consume" His creation. Poof. Gone. His choice. But not everything will be on the menu. He preserves a couple of things: His KINGDOM and His people. There is an eternal party in heaven with the Godhead, angels and people of FAITH. Now they are people who have no real right to be there and have received GRACE and MERCY by faith.He warns us not to reject this invitation to the party; and don't reject the INVITOR. You get there by faith, just like always. Things won't always be as they seem right now, so get busy in faith today if you don't believe. If you do believe, be grateful, be in awe and worship.
We should never underestimate who God may use to further His Kingdom. It could even be the Mike Seaver from next door. On today's edition of Family Talk, co-host Gary Bauer interviews actor Kirk Cameron about his faith journey from an atheist to a follower of Jesus Christ. Discover the voice the Lord has given Kirk in support of Christian values through his many endeavors, including the national library campaign called, See You at the Library. 1 Peter 2:15 states, For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. To support this ministry financially, visit: https://www.oneplace.com/donate/707/29
“I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest; for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.” Luke 21:3–4We must all see ourselves as this poor widow by offering our “whole livelihood” to Christ. Everything we have is a gift from God, and it must be offered back to God, sacrificially, as our gift to Him. The material offering made by this poor widow was two small coins worth very little. The truth is that even if you were the richest person in the world and donated all that you had to God, it would greatly pale in comparison to the gift given to us by our Lord. We are all poor in the big picture of God's grace and His Kingdom. The most any one of us can offer is symbolized by these two small coins.As you look at your own life, how willing are you to give everything you have to our Lord for His glory and service? The only appropriate “offering” we are called to give to our Lord is the “sacrifice” of our entire life. This spiritual truth is something very difficult for those who are very wealthy in the things of this world. Material wealth offers an easy way to live in comfort. Money can provide every modern convenience, entertainment, fun, worldly security and much of what this world has to offer. But money cannot buy fulfillment. It cannot satisfy us in the truest sense. This is why many people who live very luxurious lives are not truly happy.Happiness is found in sacrifice. Specifically, it is found in sacrificial love by which we dedicate everything we are and all that we have to the sole purpose of the glory of God and the furtherment of His Kingdom. Sadly, when one is rich in the things of this world, it is easy to think that offering a portion of their wealth, such as a tithe, means that they can keep and use the rest any way they want. But that's not true. Giving of ourselves completely to God and to His service does not necessarily mean that we donate all of our money to the Church. But it does mean that we offer everything to God. For many, when this complete offering is done every day, God will lead them to use their material resources for the raising of their family, to take care of their basic needs, and, at times, to even enjoy various comforts in life. But the real question is whether or not you truly live as though all you have and all you are is God's and is to be used for His glory and the furtherment of His will. Reflect, today, upon this poor widow. She was greatly blessed to have very little. This made it easier for her to remain detached from money and other forms of material wealth. And in that detachment, she gave all to God. She entrusted all to Him, and Jesus noticed and praised her. Reflect upon our Lord's reaction to you and to the offering of your life to Him. If you are holding back from our Lord, then use the witness of this poor widow to inspire you to daily dedicate everything to the service of God in accord with His holy will. My wealthy Lord, Your riches are all that matter in life. You bestow the riches of eternal salvation and countless other graces upon those who have given all to You. I do give my life to You, dear Lord. I give all that I have and all that I am. Please receive the offering of my life and use me in accord with Your holy will. Jesus, I trust in You.Source of content: catholic-daily-reflections.comCopyright © 2023 My Catholic Life! Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission via RSS feed.
This week Rev. Dr. Iosmar Alvarez finishes our Stewardship Campaign sermon series “Kingdom Wealth and Stewardship”. possessions. We will be recognizing that our role as stewards is to faithfully manage the resources entrusted to us by God, using them wisely for His purposes. By trusting that as we are faithful in stewarding what we have, God can bless and multiply our resources, enabling us to be more effective in His Kingdom's work. We understand that responsible stewardship will lead to heavenly rewards as we hear the Lord's "Well done" and share in His eternal joy.
Simplicity: Making Room in Our Hearts 11.26.23 "Spiritual disciplines facilitate a process that is out of one's control, but it does not have the capacity to determine an outcome. A gardener for example, does not actually grow plants. The gardener practices finely honed skills, such as cultivating soil, watering, feeding, weeding, pruning. But there is nothing the gardener can do to make the plants grow. However, if the gardener does not do what a gardener is supposed to do, the plants are not as likely to flourish. In fact, they may not grow at all. Gardening involves skills of receptivity. The skills are necessary but by themselves insufficient." -Martin Laird Simplicity is an inward reality that results in an outward lifestyle - Richard Foster 22 Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! 25 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life[b]? 26 Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest? 27 “Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 28 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! 29 And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. 30 For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well. 32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Luke 12:22-34 “We Christians must simplify our lives or lose untold treasures on earth and in eternity.” -A.W. Tozer 1. Diminishes Distraction 2. Increases Time "In frantic fidelity we try to meet at least the necessary minimum of calls upon us. But we're weary and breathless. And we know and regret that our life is slipping away, with our having tasted so little of the peace and joy and serenity we are persuaded it should yield to a soul of wide caliber. The times for the deeps of the silences of the heart seem so few. And in guilty regret we must postpone till next week that deeper life of unshaken composure in the holy presence, where we sincerely know our true home is, for this week is much too full." - Thomas Kelley 3. Exposes Idols of the Heart Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Proverbs 4:23 What are the things in my life that distract me from His Kingdom? What are the things in my life that are stealing too much time? Are there any idols in my heart that need to be exposed?
One Year Bible Podcast: Join Hunter and Heather Barnes on 'The Daily Radio Bible' for a daily 20-minute spiritual journey. Engage with scripture readings, heartfelt devotionals, and collective prayers that draw you into the heart of God's love. Embark on this year-long voyage through the Bible, and let each day's passage uplift and inspire you. TODAY'S EPISODE: Join us on today's episode of the Daily Radio Bible as we delve into the rich and challenging teachings of Matthew 23-25. We begin with Jesus' sharp rebukes in Matthew 23, known as the 'Seven Woes,' directed at hypocrisy and false piety. Then, we transition into the Olivet Discourse in chapters 24 and 25, where Jesus speaks prophetically about the end times and shares the Parables of the Ten Virgins and the Talents, emphasizing readiness and faithful stewardship. These chapters are crucial for understanding Jesus' call for authenticity in faith and preparedness for His Kingdom. Whether you're a new believer or deepening your scriptural journey, this episode offers profound insights into living a life that truly reflects Christ's teachings. Tune in as we explore these compelling chapters, enriching our spiritual understanding and daily walk of faith. TODAY'S PRAYERS: Lord God Almighty and everlasting father you have brought us in safety to this new day preserve us with your Mighty power that we might not fall into sin or be overcome by adversity. And in all we do, direct us to the fulfilling of your purpose through Jesus Christ Our Lord amen. Oh God you have made of one blood all the peoples of the earth and sent your blessed son to preach peace to those who are far and those who are near. Grant that people everywhere may seek after you, and find you. Bring the nations into your fold, pour out your Spirit on all flesh, and hasten the coming of your kingdom through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen. And now Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is doubt, faith. Where there is despair, hope. Where there is darkness, light. And where there is sadness, Joy. Oh Lord grant that I might not seek to be consoled as to console. To be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love. For it is in the giving that we receive, in the pardoning that we are pardoned, it is in the dying that we are born unto eternal life. Amen And now as our Lord has taught us we are bold to pray... Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, they kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven, give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our tresspasses as we forgive those who trespass against us, and lead us not unto temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen. Loving God, we give you thanks for restoring us in your image. And nourishing us with spiritual food, now send us forth as forgiven people, healed and renewed, that we may proclaim your love to the world, and continue in the risen life of Christ. Amen. TODAY'S SCRIPTURE: follow us at www.dailyradiobible.com We are reading through the New Living Translation. Partner with us! Click HERE to give! Leave us a voicemail HERE: https://www.speakpipe.com/dailyradiobible Subscribe to us at YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@Dailyradiobible/featured ______
On this best of "Mornings with Carmen, " Church Initiative's Sam Hodges offers hope for those dealing with the death of a loved one as we head into the holidays through a ministry called Griefshare. Karen Ellis, author of "Wisdom's Call," talks about pursuing wholeness and peace by listening to wisdom's call in the person of Jesus, His Kingdom, and His ways, as opposed to the call of folly from the world. Faith Radio podcasts are made possible by your support. Give now: Click here
Trials of Faith Prepare Us For Battle (5) (audio) David Eells - 11/22/23 Personalize Your Relationship Anonymous 3/1/23 (David's notes in red) With a direct relationship in Christ Jesus to our Father, there is no middleman to corrupt and steal anything. He has and His Will be done through us. (I felt that the enemy tries to get in between us and God, and steal what God has for us and what we can do for Him.) Put Me first and I will put you first forever! (I felt we need to seek Him to do our best, to give Him everything since it all belongs to Him.) (Joh 17:10 and all things that are mine are thine, and thine are mine: and I am glorified in them.) Concentrate. I can reveal and guide you in all things. Trust in Me. I have every good gift for you. (I was reminded that the Lord can bring to our memory what I thought I had forgotten. And I also felt that when we make a mistake to never look back but to focus on the finished product.) (Psa 119:27 Make me to understand the way of thy precepts: So shall I meditate on thy wondrous works. Joh 14:26 …he shall teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said unto you. Joh 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he shall guide you into all the truth:…) Keep trying on task. (Attempt and don't worry about how, it's about why. We willingly do so as He puts it all in us.) Keep trying with desire. (Seeking Him and His Will will be done.) (Mat 6:33 But seek ye first his kingdom, and his righteousness;… Pro 2: 4-5 If thou seek her [Wisdom] as silver, And search for her as for hid treasures: 5 Then shalt thou understand the fear of Jehovah, And find the knowledge of God.) Keep trying as Christ in us would so we would be refined for the Kingdom.) (Col 3:17 And whatsoever ye do, in word or in deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.) There is much to learn and do, just concentrate on the moment. Be at peace and do not get too far ahead of the current day. (Mat 6:34 Be not therefore anxious for the morrow: for the morrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. Jas 4:14-15 whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. What is your life? For ye are a vapor that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. 15 For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall both live, and do this or that.) Lay down the blocks and build for the glory of the Kingdom. We are to give our all to the Lord to build His Kingdom.) (Psa 145:12 To make known to the sons of men his mighty acts, And the glory of the majesty of his kingdom. 1Th 5:11 Wherefore exhort one another, and build each other up, even as also ye do.) (We can give nothing for God without offering our old life as a burnt offering on the altar of the fiery trial. We cannot offer to him a blemished sacrifice of a life. Rom 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service. 1Pe 2:5 …to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.) Am I important to you? Then say so! (Let us confess God to man and Glorify Him to man.) (Mat 10:32 Every one therefore who shall confess me before men, him will I also confess before my Father who is in heaven.) Be patient and faithful. (which are fruits of the Spirit.) (Heb 6:12…but imitators of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.) Lambs among wolves...But I went before you and made it possible for you to conquered in all trials! (He suffered before us and enables us to have a relationship with our Father.) (Luk 10:3 Go your ways; behold, I send you forth as lambs in the midst of wolves.) Nothing you are experiencing is harder than what My Son suffered and showed His Love for you. See and know by faith how close I am to you. Cherish it! Question yourself, Is what you are doing out of love? Not how others can love you and benefit you, but what are you from their point of view? Would I approve of what you are doing to them? (1Co 16:14 Let all that ye do be done in love. Gal 6:2 Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.) Why do you want to do it? In love for me? Or for self or because of fear? Or is it because I Am and love conquers all? (Php 2:3-4 doing nothing through faction or through vainglory, but in lowliness of mind each counting other better than himself; 4 not looking each of you to his own things, but each of you also to the things of others. 1Jn 4:16 And we know and have believed the love which God hath in us. God is love; and he that abideth in love abideth in God, and God abideth in him.) Many have come before Me and failed. (I felt there have been many who thought they were righteous and deserved to be accepted into heaven, but were denied for their self-works that were not for his Glory.) (Eph 2:8-9 for by grace have ye been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not of works, that no man should glory.) Rest in the promises and know why I need you. (He paid the ultimate price for us and has heavily invested into us to meet the need for those whom He has chosen.) Even a tiny light can overcome, overwhelm and destroy the pitch-black darkness! (I was reminded of a watch I wore when I was a child that I pressed a button and it was bright enough to see in the dark at night.) (Joh 1:5 And the light shineth in the darkness; and the darkness apprehended it not.) Speak and be the image of My light and My Word as My Son has given you example. Be strong to never let anything change the Christ in you. (We are conquerors by His faith!) You have two ears. You can't shut your ears but you can shut your mouth! (Two ears and one mouth show that we should be quick to hear and slow to speak.) (I felt very convicted on what and when I should speak anything, or if I should say anything at all.) (Psa 141:3 Set a watch, O Jehovah, before my mouth; Keep the door of my lips.) Be strong. Nothing can separate you from Me! Do not let the darkness be able to cover the light! (Mat 5:14 Ye are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a lamp, and put it under the bushel, but on the stand; and it shineth unto all that are in the house.) You are dear and nearer to Me than even the breath you have inside you. (Rom 8:35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?...) Reach up! Grab hold of me! Do you not see I await you, and that for an infinite eternal love relationship forever? Come, let us sup together! (Eph 3:16-19 that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, that ye may be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inward man; 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; to the end that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be strong to apprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge, that ye may be filled unto all the fulness of God.) LED Anonymous 1/8/23 I saw myself as an LED on a giant electronics board. There were billions of chips, transistors, diodes all sorts all linked in intricate ways and many other LEDs too. Then I saw the LED as myself, light up as a small flicker. Then it was more consistent and brighter. I felt that the power flowing through me was able to make the LED light shine, when aligned correctly to the way of the Lord, the great Designer. Soon the LED grew so bright that nothing else of the bulb could be seen other than this intense light. Then the Lord placed His Hand on it and the LED was able to spread to other areas on the electronics board as the other LEDs were lighting up and getting brighter. NENT Joh 8:12 Again therefore Jesus spake to them, saying, I am the light of the world: who followeth me shall in no wise walk in the darkness, but shall have the light of life. Mat 5:14 YE are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Mat 5:16 Thus let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in the heavens. Eph 5:8 for ye were once darkness, but are now light in the Lord: walk as children of light . Video Game Revelation Anonymous 2022 (David's notes in red) I know this revelation may seem strange, but I used to play video games and one particular video game came to me through a vision. (I used to play before I was saved, but since I have repented and have nothing to do with them ever again.) God is like the video game designer and He is also the one playing the game. He has control over all things in the game. (God only is sovereign and in control of ALL our trials that have been specifically and personally designed for each of us, and He alone is sovereign over the devil and our enemies.) I saw a video game that was a top-down view over a vast area of control. I saw how there were many things being done as though looking on the face of the Earth and all the people and what the Lord created. As I was watching, I saw many developments and changes occur. The perspective then zoomed in on one particular person who was the size of an ant. The person was in a frantic state, shaking their arms about and yelling up at the sky as though to ‘the Man in charge' of the view from above. (We should not be fearful or doubtful during trials, agreeing with what we feel and see but instead only believing and speaking God's word, and casting down everything contrary to the Word. We should ask God to give us grace to have faith during a trial.) 2Co 5:7 (for we walk by faith, not by sight); 2Co 10:3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. The people were crying and asking for help with words in bubbles of all the things they could not do. Then just as quick as they cried out and were answered, they ran off and did more of their own things. Job 35:9 By reason of the multitude of oppressions they cry out;… I felt this had to do with the Christians who call out to God for help, and once that thing is fixed, they quickly forget the Lord and runs off to please their flesh. (Psa 106:13 They soon forgat his works; They waited not for his counsel, 14 But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness, And tempted God in the desert.) 1Pe 5:7 casting all your anxiety upon him, because he careth for you. Heb 4:13 And there is no creature not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and laid open before the eyes of him with whom we have to do. Choose The Wild West Wilderness Samuel Fire 4/17/23 (David's notes in red) I saw a vision of a pros and cons list. First on the right was written ‘Christ' and on the left was ‘antichrist'. Written underneath the Christ column was ‘Christ is Life', and on the opposite column were the words, ‘death', and ‘fake life that has an end.' Christ antichrist Christ is Life ‘death', ‘fake life that has an end' I then saw myself standing inside an old western-style saloon bar and I ran outside onto the dirt street into the hot sun, and I knew that, “This is life!” (Joh 10:10 …I came that they may have life, and may have it abundantly.) The bar doors were still flapping, and I didn't even want to look or go back into that saloon bar. (Through the trials we are given a choice to choose life or death, the spirit or flesh, Jesus or the devil.) (I.e., Leave the beast kingdom of delusion of spirits and enter the “wild west” wilderness with Christ to find real, eternal life. Jos 24:14-15 Now therefore fear Jehovah, and serve him in sincerity and in truth; and put away the gods which your fathers served beyond the River, and in Egypt; and serve ye Jehovah. 15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve Jehovah, choose you this day whom ye will serve;…) (Col 1:9-14 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray and make request for you, that ye may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 to walk worthily of the Lord unto all pleasing, bearing fruit in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 strengthened with all power, according to the might of his glory, unto all patience and longsuffering with joy; 12 giving thanks unto the Father, who made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light; 13 who delivered us out of the power of darkness, and translated us into the kingdom of the Son of his love; 14 in whom we have our redemption, the forgiveness of our sins And Col 1:21-23 And you, being in time past alienated and enemies in your mind in your evil works, 22 yet now hath he reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and without blemish and unreproveable before him: 23 if so be that ye continue in the faith, grounded and stedfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel which ye heard, which was preached in all creation under heaven; whereof I Paul was made a minister.) Power In The Word Samuel Fire 4/28/23 (David's notes in red) I saw (in a vision) how fire too close will melt the fake, plasticky flesh; the carnality of vanity. (Submitting to God's Word in trials and tribulations cause the old man to die and for the spirit of Christ to shine through us even brighter.) (Psa 119:28 My soul melteth for heaviness: Strengthen thou me according unto thy word.) Then as the length of exposure increases, the flesh will then catch fire and burn, and then (the fire will) spread to whatever is involved, like to witchcraft evil and those in the apostate corporate body. (Isa 33:14-15 The sinners in Zion are afraid; trembling hath seized the godless ones: Who among us can dwell with the devouring fire? who among us can dwell with everlasting burnings? 15 He that walketh righteously, and speaketh uprightly; he that despiseth the gain of oppressions, that shaketh his hands from taking a bribe, that stoppeth his ears from hearing of blood, and shutteth his eyes from looking upon evil:) Judges 15:4-5 And Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took firebrands, and turned tail to tail, and put a firebrand in the midst between every two tails. 5 And when he had set the brands on fire, he let them go into the standing grain of the Philistines and burnt up both the shocks and the standing grain, and also the oliveyards. (The strong man, Jesus, burned up the fruit of the old man to conquer our Promised Land.) Then I saw a soldier wielding a buckler to defend at the perfect time, without any indication of an attack. When a threat is exposed to the elders, there is then the full arsenal to be set to defend the whole body; much like a commander of an army organizing the troops (A buckler is smaller for personal close contact fighting. A shield is for a much larger attack to remain in position.) Psa 35:2 Take hold of shield and buckler, And stand up for my help. (His Word is a defence we must utilize to defend and fight for His Kingdom in unison as one Body in Christ.) Psa 91:4 He will cover thee with his pinions, And under his wings shalt thou take refuge: His truth is a shield and a buckler. (These are These are wisdom of the Word to defend against the wiles of the enemies.) Replace The Dross Anonymous 4/29/23 (David's notes in red) I heard in prayer: “Pause. Think about Me and what you are doing. Nothing in this world is perfect yet and there is brokenness everywhere. Bits and pieces fall off things all the time. (Psa 147:3 He healeth the broken in heart, And bindeth up their wounds.) When filled with My Love and Holy Spirit and led by Christ, there can then be growth into the eternal prize I desire. Wrestle and pin down the enemy. Raise the flag of victory. (The Lord has given us victories over our enemies on many fronts here and overseas. Isa 59:18 According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, wrath to his adversaries, recompense to his enemies…) The enemy has been surmising the largest possible attack to stop My Children from reaching their potential. Keep focused and look unto Me and My Promise. Remember I need you and you are indeed important to Me. How do you get rid of dirty hands? Wash them.” (Then I saw us actually applying the Blood of Jesus by faith and washing all areas and replacing everything and thought it was with His presence and victory.) Defeating The Dragon With Jesus Help Marie Kelton 10/27/23 (David's notes in red) During the worship part of the meeting, the enemy was attacking my mind but I was telling him to leave me alone. I then had an open vision of me putting on a white medieval helmet that covered my nose (helmet of salvation.) I was in a cave, there was this big black dragon. I had a sword in my hand, and I knew I was supposed to kill the dragon. The dragon tried to attack by breathing fire at me, but I was able to avoid it by stepping behind a wall (representing sanctification) that was in the cave. I then stood back in front of the dragon. I was wondering how I was going to defeat it. Then I saw Jesus come behind me, and step inside my body. Then, I was able to swing the sword and cut the neck and the head of the dragon off its body. (Jesus is the Word Who lives in us. When we speak the Word, His power defeats the enemy. Php 4:13 I can do all things in him that strengtheneth me. We are in the process of casting down the Dragon of Rev 12 as the angels fight for us and we confess the blood. Eph 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Heb 4:12 For the word of God is living, and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword,… Act 17:28 for in him we live, and move, and have our being) The Fiery Trials Milt Green Peter said, "Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: but rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when His glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. Wherefore, let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to Him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator (1 Pet. 4:12, 13, 19). The fiery trials today are the efforts of the world, the flesh, and the devil to turn our hearts away from God. Every man will either come through the fire and be like precious gold (with a divine nature), or else he will be a vessel of wood, hay, and stubble, which is burned up. When the pressures and trials come, if we strike back at others, we break God's law and give the fiery serpents ground to build strongholds and destroy us. If anyone has a foundation built upon carnal doctrines, they have a false security. The fire will destroy all of those who walk after a form of godliness because they walk in disobedience. Anyone who stands on their carnal doctrines as a foundation is not standing on the Word of God. Their foundation is sand. They themselves are wood, hay and stubble, and in the fiery tests the fire will consume them because they have no hedge of protection from God. No other foundation except the Lord Jesus Christ can survive this fire: "But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built a house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great" (Luke 6:49). Everyone who follows after a doctrine that does not conform them to godliness is destroyed. When you have a false security, you do not act on the Word of God. Paul wrote, "Now if any man build upon this foundation, gold, silver, precious stone, wood, hay, stubble; every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire (powers of darkness) shall try every man's work of what sort it is. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ" (1 Cor. 3:12, 13, 11). That is why we need the true apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers: "For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ (until Christ's love is perfected in us). That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine" (Eph. 4:12-14). God has been testing the hearts of men since the day He put Adam in the garden. He offered Adam the tree of life or the tree of death. God still tests the hearts of all creation. Only the ones who love the Lord with all their hearts and put their faith and trust in Him will survive the fiery tests of this world. All others will break God's laws and be under the punishment and judgment of the law, because their hearts love idols more than God. "The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished: but chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise government" (2 Pet. 2:9, 10). We either resist the flesh and the temptations of Satan, or else we walk after the desires of the flesh in unrighteousness, in which case we stay under the judgment and punishment of God's law. Jesus said, "I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead. Be watchful (wake up!), and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect (because you are not being perfected in love) before God. Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard (remember the Gospel!), and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief (in judgment), and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee. He that overcometh (the world, the flesh and temptations of Satan) shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life" (Rev. 3:1-3, 5). Jesus is coming first like a thief in destruction. Jesus did not come the way the religious leaders expected him the first time. Neither will Jesus come the way the religious leaders expect Him this time. "Hear, ye deaf; and look, ye blind, that ye may see. Who is blind as he that is perfect, and blind as the Lord's servant? The Lord is well pleased for His righteousness' sake; He will magnify the law, and make it honorable. But this is a people robbed and spoiled; they are all of them snared in holes, and they are hid in prison houses (of the powers of darkness): they are for a prey, and none delivereth; for a spoil, and none saith, Restore. Who gave Jacob for a spoil, and Israel to the robbers? Did not the Lord, He against whom we have sinned? For they would not walk in his ways, neither were they obedient to his law. Therefore He hath poured upon him the fury of His anger and the strength of battle: and it hath set him on fire around about, yet he knew not; and it burned him, yet he laid it not to heart" (Isa. 42:18, 19, 21-25). The sleeping church is being destroyed today and they don't even know it. They will scoff at warnings such as this. The fires of destruction are already being poured out among us. The Scriptures are not enough to lead most of these people out of darkness. That is the reason that only a remnant can hear. The others will not wake up-for them it is business as usual. God warns us in His Word: "Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot: they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; but the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed. Whoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it… This is how Jesus comes as a thief upon the spiritually dead congregation that will not wake up and repent in these last days. The hedge is lowered, and He no longer restrains the hordes of the powers of darkness which have been unleashed against the spiritually dead, fallen away church. If you read these Scriptures through the eyes of a carnal doctrine, you will be led to believe that the men who are taken from the bed or out of the field are raptured, rather than destroyed by the fire. This is how the deception and darkness have come upon us today. This is why people are being burned and they pay no attention. This is the fallen away church today which practices sin (lawlessness). The remnant will love the Lord Jesus Christ with all their hearts. They will be perfected in love and holiness. No one will be able to counterfeit the love that is perfected in the remnant. You will know them by their fruits. The stumbling blocks will also be evident and they will be destroyed. "Another parable put He forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field. But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also (tares are evident because they bear the fruit of the flesh)" (Mat. 13:24-26). "Now the works of the flesh are manifest" (Gal 5:19). When we practice the deeds of the flesh, we bear the wrong fruit and break God's law. This is how men who teach doctrines that do not conform you to godliness lead you to walk under the judgment and curse of the law. This is how the church is being destroyed in the fire today. They have no fear of God as they teach a form of godliness and become stumbling blocks to others. The blind follow the blind and never bear the fruit of love. In fact, they cannot because they are tares. "As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The son of man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity (by practicing sin)" (Mat. 13:40, 41). "So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, and shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth (hate, anger, bitterness, sickness, pain, etc.) Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear" (Matt. 13:49, 50, 43). There are hundreds of different denominations and teachings in this country today and each one has its own form of righteousness. But there is only one true righteousness and that is walking right in God's eyes. When we establish our own righteousness, we do not submit to the righteousness of God. Israel departed from the law and righteousness of God to establish their own righteousness. Paul said of them, "my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God" (Rom. 10:1-3). When the wicked thinks he is righteous in his own eyes, there is no fear of God. He is blinded to the judgment of God because he has a false security. This is how millions are blinded to the judgment of the law today. "Hearken unto Me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is My law: fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings. For the moth (the powers of darkness) shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm shall eat them like wool: but My righteousness shall be forever" (Isa. 5 1:7, 8). The righteousness of God stands forever because only the righteous will survive. God has set up laws to destroy those who are wise in their own eyes, and will not submit to the righteousness of God. Jesus said, "I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth (remains, continues) in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit (of love): ... If a man abide not in Me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them and cast them into the fire, and they are burned" (John 15:5,6). "Herein is My Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit (of love); so shall ye be My disciples (God's kind of agape love is the proof of discipleship)" (John 15:8). Jesus sets us free from being slaves of sin (lawlessness) to become slaves of righteousness (a pure heart): "For as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness (a pure heart)" (Rom. 6:19). Paul said, "What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life" (Rom. 6:2 1, 22). Through obedience we have a pure heart and we are perfected in love to the fullness of the measure of the stature which belongs to Christ. When the Word of God and the Holy Spirit have removed the selfish nature of Satan, we no longer live for ourselves. Therefore we have the nature of God and love others as Jesus loved us. We have laid down our lives so we can walk in God's kind of love. "Charity (God's kind of love) suffereth long, and is kind; (God's kind of love) envieth not; (God's kind of love) vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own (way), is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity (God's kind of agape love) never faileth. Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity (this God-kind of Love), I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing" (1 Cor. 13:4, 5, 7, 8, 1-3). The God-kind of love is the only love which can love your neighbor as yourself: "For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself' (Gal. 5:14). The ones who come through the fire will have this God-kind of love, which is the divine nature of God.
172: Pt. 1 Encounter Changed Life Trajectory | Rivera Douthit on Spirit-Centered Business™In a God-orchestrated meeting Rivera and I hit it off and I knew I had to introduce her to you! She is running for Lieutenant Governor of North Carolina, following a call from the Lord to step into politics to bring His Kingdom to earth in a big way. Her story is inspiring and her message is so needed in today's world.BIO:Rivera Douthit is a speaker, political candidate, and author of Intimacy: Into Me You See, and Zero Gravity: Where Heaven and Earth Collide.She is also the founder of Rivera International Ministries (RIM), a nonprofit organization designed to reach the nations with the gospel. As a spiritual mother and one who leads many into an understanding of their identity, Rivera desires to see an entire generation catapulted by the Spirit of God into their unique callings and destinies. With a passion for revival, evangelism, and unity in the body of Christ, her greatest joy is pointing people to Jesus, seeing them downloaded with new revelation of the Father's love and marked by the all-consuming fire of His Spirit.Rivera teaches people to hear the voice of God more clearly and step into their identity as sons and daughters of God. She stands on the Bible as the infallible Word of God and plumb-line of truth.Her past experience as a Critical Care nurse has shaped her passion for spiritual, emotional, and physical healing. Rivera is an evangelist who flows in gifts of the Holy Spirit. She is a firebrand: pure yet direct, unapologetic and steadfast in her identity with her King. Often traveling to speak for women's conferences, events and retreats, she has a love for empowering women in true confidence.When Rivera ministers, she delivers a now word from God and has had the honor of preaching the simple gospel and the healing power of Jesus in large meetings and crusades internationally. In her meetings she has seen hundreds healed, saved, and delivered.Rivera lives in her country home in North Carolina. She's wife to David and mom to two adult children.TOPICS:- Rebellion against the religious system- Running after relationship with the One True God- Encounter with the Lord- Seeing a bad result coming if she didn't turn around- Worship leader in a mega church- If I've learned something wrong prayer- Introducing her to the MORE…- Coming out of cessationism- Persevering spiritLINKS:- Rivera's Campaign Details: http://Rivera4NC.com- Rivera's Ministry and Books: https://riveradouthit.comGet Bralynn's Book! Discover Your Business Destiny: Co-Creating, Stewarding and Standing to Manifest God's Divine Planhttp://SpiritCenteredBusiness.com/bookBralynn's Declaration of Trade Course: https://bralynn.groovepages.com/declarationCopyright 2023 - Bralynn Newby Int'l. All rights reserved.This show is part of the Spreaker Prime Network, if you are interested in advertising on this podcast, contact us at https://www.spreaker.com/show/4207323/advertisement
On Re:Center Podcast this week Zac Whitfield and John Mohrbacher dig into Ephesians 3:1-9. Follow along with the Ephesians sermon series. They will be using the discovery Bible study method to learn to not just hear but obey what God is teaching us or as Jesus says, "Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.” (John 14:21)Also at times in this series, we will discuss in depth various aspects Paul talks about in Ephesians around what life practically looks like as we follow Jesus and live our lives joining His Kingdom work.Music by:Jordan Brown Music
Coach Mike Briglin, Assistant Head Coach and Defensive Coordinator at Putnam City North High School continues to share a story that isn't perfect but covered by a perfect Savior.There is a light that shines on Mike and a light that shines through Him that allows him to personify and exemplify God's unconditional love, unwavering grace, and forgiveness to everyone in his circle of influence!His story is still being written, and we cannot wait to see what Jesus and Mike do next for His Kingdom!Want to connect? Email: firstname.lastname@example.orgWebsite: completingandcompeting.orgTwitter: @candcministry Instagram: @candcministry
“A nobleman went off to a distant country to obtain the kingship for himself and then to return. He called ten of his servants and gave them ten gold coins and told them, ‘Engage in trade with these until I return.' His fellow citizens, however, despised him and sent a delegation after him to announce, ‘We do not want this man to be our king.'” Luke 19:12–14There are three categories of people in this parable. The first includes those who received a gold coin and followed the master's request to “engage in trade” until he returned. The second has those who received the same command but were lazy and failed to produce any good fruit from that which our Lord has given them. And the third includes those who “despise” our Lord and do not want Him as their King.Upon the king's return, this first category of people are represented by the two servants who took the gold coins, engaged in trade, and made five and ten more. These are those who have much apostolic zeal. God not only calls us to use the gifts we have received to expand His Kingdom on earth, He also expects it of us. His expectation is a command of love. For those who understand this command, they see it as a glorious invitation to make an eternal difference in the lives of many. They do not see the apostolic works to which they are called as a burden. Rather, they see them as a joy, and that joy fuels their efforts. The result will have exponential effects for God's Kingdom.The second category of people is illustrated by the one servant who kept the one gold coin “stored away in a handkerchief” out of fear. These are the people who avoid evangelizing and furthering the Kingdom of God out of fear. Fear is paralyzing. But giving in to fear is a sin. It's a lack of faith and trust in God. Serving God will inevitably require courage on our part. It will demand that we step out of our comfort zone and do that which we may not immediately feel comfortable doing. But as that servant in the parable foretold, God is a demanding God. And He will not accept fear as an acceptable excuse not to zealously help to build the Kingdom of God.The third category of people is the category in which you definitely do not want to fall. These are those who actively work to undermine God's Kingship and reject Him as God. The world is filled with these people. The only thing we need to say about those who fall into this category is that which our Lord said of them. “Now as for those enemies of mine who did not want me as their king, bring them here and slay them before me.” Reflect, today, upon which category of people your life most fully resembles. Most likely it is one of the first two. Do you have great zeal for God's Kingdom? Are you willing to do all that you can to help build His Kingdom? Are you willing to do so even at the cost of great personal sacrifice? If so, then rejoice and know that an abundant reward awaits. But if you are one who struggles with fear, specifically, if you struggle with a fear to evangelize, to share the Gospel and to live your faith openly with humility and love, then spend more time with this parable and the fate of that one servant who hid the coin in the handkerchief. Engage in the apostolate. Commit yourself to the furtherance of God's Kingdom. Dispel all fear and know that you will never regret putting your whole heart and soul into the service of God and the building of His Kingdom. My demanding Lord, You have entrusted me with much, and You demand that I use all that You have given me to help build Your Kingdom of grace. What a privilege it is to be called by You and used by You for this apostolic mission. Please free me from all fear, dear Lord, so that I will never hesitate to serve You in the ways that You call me to serve. Jesus, I trust in You.Source of content: catholic-daily-reflections.comCopyright © 2023 My Catholic Life! Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission via RSS feed.
We're diving deep into practical faith. So, here's the big question to keep in mind throughout: How can we integrate our faith into every aspect of our lives? From understanding the significance of attending church to making God a part of our daily routines and discovering what we can offer to God, we're exploring the nitty-gritty of practical Christianity. So, grab your boots, let's hit the trail, and find the answers together!
This episode shares with the listeners the will of God for mankind to be in a perfect relationship with Him. His Kingdom come and His will is done in mankind in the earth as it is in Heaven. " God is A Spirit ( A Spiritual Being) and those who worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in truth ( Reality). John Chapter 4 Verse 24.
Jesus often oriented His practices of hospitality towards those on the margins and at the "bottom" of the hierarchy. He invites us to use hospitality to restore His Kingdom's justice - or fair and right treatment of people - in this world. Luke 14:12-
Daily Dose Series: Bonus Mondays! This week, maybe more than ever, we can have the ability to make an impact, to show love for the sake of Christ and His Kingdom, like never before. Message by Chris Brown. Video available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/CuSIgylKPyE
Jesus uses many parables throughout His time recorded on earth. He compares His kingdom in Matthew 13 to a treasure hidden in a field that is purchased by a man with all he has and a merchant who finds one great pearl and sells all he has to buy it. In comparing this, He is essentially saying that when you discover the beautiful gift of salvation from Him, you will do whatever you can to be a part and invest in His Kingdom work. - Emma DanzeySUBSCRIBE to our sister podcasts:Your Daily Prayer: https://www.lifeaudio.com/your-daily-prayer/Your Daily Bible Verse: https://www.lifeaudio.com/your-daily-bible-verse/ Discover more Christian podcasts at lifeaudio.com and inquire about advertising opportunities at lifeaudio.com/contact-us.
#146// 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, "Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."How are you doing with the will of God in Christ Jesus for you when it comes to rejoicing and giving thanks? Isn't it crazy how we can clearly know what the will of God is for our life -- it's right there in the scripture! -- and still struggle with choosing to do it? Even Paul grieved over this in Romans 6 and 7, right? So why is it that we can know what we need to do, but have such a hard time choosing it? Do you struggle to choose joy and gratitude in the midst of your own hard circumstances? On this episode of The Positioned to Prosper Podcast, I'm sharing the message I preached at our last REVIVE Woman Girls Night Out event. During my share I unpacked Biblical guidance for how to choose joy and gratitude right in the midst of the hardest things life can throw at us. Are you ready to choose joy and gratitude right where you are? Grab your Bible, your journal and a pen, and . . . Let's Go!JOIN THE JESUS GIRL GANG! Looking for a community of women to go deeper into the things of God with? Desiring a deep dive into God's Word with a company of women who are learning to apply Truth without compromise? Wanting a discipleship experience that sharpens and equips you to be able to make a bold and confident sound into the earth for Jesus and His Kingdom? Jump in the Gang right here, Sis! Sign up before Sunday, November 26th and you'll receive a free membership trial through the end of the month. Let's dig in together!
Flipped “Now and Later” Luke 6:21b, 25b (1) JESUS' LIFE (2) MAN'S LIFE (3) HOPE FILLED (4) now WEEPING (5) later LAUGHING (6) Attentive to God & His Kingdom (7) Ignorant of God (8) attuned to man's Kingdom (9) now LAUGHING (10) later WEEPING (11) HOPE LESS LifeGroup Questions: Apply the Teaching to Our Lives Begin Life Group with prayer - invite the Holy Spirit to speak and move among you. What's your preference: weeping or laughing? Why? What are the benefits and dangers of both? Storytime: share a time in your life when weeping turned to laughing OR when laughing turned to weeping. As a group, read (silently or aloud) Psalm 51 and discuss the following: What's the context? What situation is David in from our notes today? Weeping to laughing or laughing to weeping? Take a closer look at verses 16 and 17. Which approach does this illustrate from our text today? How can we as a church and especially as a life group, keep one another attentive to God and His kingdom and avoid slipping into an ignorance of God? Spend time going over the handout from service Sunday - how can lament, self examination & confession help us to stay alert to God's kingdom? What are the benefits of these practices? Spend time together as you end praying some of these prayers of lament or confession. Perhaps break into groups as men or women or break into 2's or 3's to have closer conversations. Core CHRIST-like Characteristics: Connected to God through the Word and prayer, Heart of Worship
Today, Pastor Michael Acock speaks in week four of our 4-week series on how we are 'Formed for Politics.' During this series, we will be challenged and prodded toward the Way of Jesus in our public life. Politics is not partisanship. Politics is about creating flourishing life for all. Partisanship is the use of politics for power in a society. The powerful always seem to become oppressors and not carers. Jesus had all power; yet, ushered in His Kingdom through the life He lived, His death, His resurrection and showed us a way to live in this world that continues to usher in His Kingdom by us living as citizens of Heaven, ruled by our King Savior Jesus and His way of love and peace. You can find the full sermon notes and other resources at our website. We hope this message encourages you and helps you know Jesus in a more real way. Subscribe to us at our YouTube channel, on Apple Podcasts or on Spotify. You can also visit us at Facebook or Instagram.
From Genesis to Revelation, the Bible reveals who God is, and tells the story of His work with imperfect humans to manifest His Kingdom in the world, which centers on God's own arrival in Christ to perfectly embody the Kingdom. All scripture points toward this event, revealing to humanity that we were made to take part in God's Kingdom together in real and practical ways. The Church is called to do this right now, as we wait for Jesus to return and fully manifest His Kingdom on Earth as it is in Heaven.
As Jesus lays out the principles of His Kingdom, we see that we are to give all things generously. Because that characterizes the Kingdom of Heaven, it characterizes us, citizens of Heaven. In Matthew 6, Jesus teaches that generosity marks a believer, benefits the believer, and focuses the believer.
Each of us deeply desires for our lives to make a difference. Jesus tells us that the difference He wants us to make is bringing the Kingdom of Heaven into this world, right where we live. Jesus described the coming of His Kingdom as a harvest, which makes us wonder how we can bring a good harvest by the end of our lives. Jesus reveals a secret about the harvest in a story He told. The key to a good harvest isn't about searching for good soil but about scattering much seed.
John 18:36-37 — It was Jesus who said, “My kingdom is not of this world.” This simple but profound statement lies at the heart of Christianity and true faith. Jesus is saying that He is not a mere political revolutionary or social activist fighting for a better society, but He is something entirely new. Many of those living in Israel, including His own disciples, had a hard time understanding this. They still expected Jesus to overthrow the Roman rule and restore the nation of Israel. In this sermon on John 18:36–37 titled “The King and His Kingdom,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones preaches on the great truth that Jesus is the Son of God who came into the world to die for sinners. Jesus came to make all things new by His life, death, and resurrection. Many in the church have a distorted view of Jesus's kingdom: they see it only as a source of political and social change in the world. But Jesus and His message offer so much more to the world than simply improved circumstances. It is the promise of eternal life and peace with God through the blood of Christ. To be in the kingdom of God is to be a child of God, free from all sin and guilt.
Each of us deeply desires for our lives to make a difference. Jesus tells us that the difference He wants us to make is bringing the Kingdom of Heaven into this world, right where we live. Jesus described the coming of His Kingdom as a harvest, which makes us wonder how we can bring a good harvest by the end of our lives. Jesus reveals a secret about the harvest in a story He told. The key to a good harvest isn't about searching for good soil but about scattering much seed.
Jesus told his disciples this parable: “A man going on a journey called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them. To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one—to each according to his ability. Then he went away.” Matthew 25:14–15Many people dream of doing great things in this life. Those who play sports dream of winning the championship. Those in business dream of growing their business. Artists and actors dream of becoming well-known. In almost everything we do, we dream of excelling. This drive is part of the natural desires God has given to us.When it comes to the most important part of our lives, we must strive to excel also. What is the most important part of our lives? It is the calling we have received to serve the will of God. Therefore, we must strive to unite our natural desire for excellence with our faith so that we will be driven to fulfill the glorious mission God has entrusted to each one of us.Every natural ability we have must be seen as a gift, given to us by God for the purpose of glorifying Him and furthering His Kingdom on earth. In our parable today, the man who went on a journey entrusted each of his servants with a large sum of money. To one he entrusted five talents; to another two; to a third, one. A talent was a measurement of precious metals such as silver or gold. In today's value, one talent of silver would be worth about $30,000 USD. That's a lot of money entrusted to each of these servants. However, when the master returned, he referred to this initial gift to each as a small amount and then promised to entrust a large amount to the two servants who used the talents well.From a human perspective, we should see the natural gifts that God has given us as a huge amount. From a divine perspective, we must see every natural gift from God as only the beginning. God has so much more He wishes to bestow upon us. In order to obtain those riches of grace, we must first use well what we have been given for God's glory and for the furtherance of His Kingdom.What has our Lord entrusted to you? What gifts and talents do you have? As you think about your natural talents, consider how well you use them for the service of God. Using your natural abilities only for yourself is the same as refusing to use them for God. To the one man who was entrusted with one talent and did nothing with it, the master said, “You wicked, lazy servant!” He then took the one talent away and gave it to the one with ten who was responsible with the master's money. So in our lives, if we fail to dedicate our natural abilities to the service of God, we will lose even the little we have. But if we unite our natural desire for greatness with the call to serve the will of God, then there is no limit to the riches of grace God will bestow. Reflect, today, upon how diligent you are in your drive to fulfill the will of God in your life. If you feel as though you cannot make much of a difference, then try to dispel that idea. Try to do small things well. Work at perfecting your charity in your daily life. Commit yourself to daily prayer. Strive to weed out all sin in your life. Do the small things well and God will smile on these little offerings and transform them into a superabundance of grace. Most generous Lord, You have entrusted to me a particular mission in life. May I work to excel in that mission, even if it seems small and insignificant. As I do, please pour forth Your abundant blessings of grace so that I will excel in giving You the greatest glory possible and will be a greater instrument of the coming of Your Kingdom on earth. Jesus, I trust in You.Source of content: catholic-daily-reflections.comCopyright © 2023 My Catholic Life! Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission via RSS feed.
Asked by the Pharisees when the Kingdom of God would come, Jesus said in reply, “The coming of the Kingdom of God cannot be observed, and no one will announce, ‘Look, here it is,' or, ‘There it is.' For behold, the Kingdom of God is among you.” Luke 17:20–21Why did the Pharisees ask Jesus this question? Why did they want to know when the Kingdom of God would come? To answer this question, we must first look at the full context of the various communications between Jesus and the Pharisees. When we do this and see the many ways that the Pharisees attempted to trap Jesus in speech and the times in which our Lord firmly rebuked the Pharisees, it seems clear that the Pharisees did not ask Jesus this question in innocence and openness. Instead, they once again were trying to trap Him. They posed a question by which they gave the appearance of believing Jesus' teachings that the Kingdom of God was coming, but they asked not in faith but in mockery and in an attempt to trip Jesus up in His answer.Jesus' answer is mysterious. It leaves little room for the Pharisees to use Jesus' speech against Him. Perhaps the Pharisees were hoping that Jesus would say that the Kingdom was coming soon, or next month, or within the year. But Jesus' answer leaves them with confusion in the face of this mystery that “the Kingdom of God is among you.”Much of what Jesus says can only be fully understood through faith. He often speaks in veiled language intentionally, because the only way to lift the veil to perceive the meaning of His teachings is to rely upon the inspired gift of faith. Faith is like a key to unlock the secrets of the mysteries of God. Faith becomes a lens through which every parable, every figure of speech, and every mystery taught by our Lord is understood. But without this inspired gift of faith, Jesus' teachings remain mysterious and incomprehensible.When you ponder these words that “the Kingdom of God is among you,” what do you understand? Are you able to use the gift of faith to unlock the meaning of this sacred teaching? Interestingly, reading Jesus' words, spoken in a veiled way, offer us the opportunity to test our own faith. If we read these words and are left in confusion, then this is a clear sign that we need to pray for and be open to the gift of faith. But if we do read Jesus' mysterious teachings and the light of understanding is given to us, then this is a clear reason to rejoice, since this comprehension is only possible through the gift of faith. Reflect, today, upon this sacred teaching of our Lord: “The Kingdom of God is among you.” Meditate on those words and pray for insight and understanding. Jesus' words are true. His Kingdom truly is everywhere, all around us and within us. It is alive and well. Do you see it? Do you perceive it? Do you see your role in building it? Use these questions as a test of your own level of faith and know that God wants to reveal to you these mysteries that are only able to be comprehended by His grace. My mysterious Lord, Your Kingdom is everywhere, all around us and within us. I do believe. Give me the eyes of faith so that I may continually perceive Your hand at work. May I always be attentive to all that You wish to reveal to me and open to the deep meaning of the mysteries You do reveal. Increase my faith, dear Lord, so that I may know You and join in the upbuilding of Your glorious Kingdom. Jesus, I trust in You.Source of content: catholic-daily-reflections.comCopyright © 2023 My Catholic Life! Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission via RSS feed.
On Re:Center Podcast this week Zac Whitfield and John Mohrbacher dig into Ephesians 2:11-22. Follow along with the Ephesians sermon series. They will be using the discovery Bible study method to learn to not just hear but obey what God is teaching us or as Jesus says, "Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.” (John 14:21)Also at times in this series, we will discuss in depth various aspects Paul talks about in Ephesians around what life practically looks like as we follow Jesus and live our lives joining His Kingdom work.Music by:Jordan Brown Music
Web Description: For the most part, we do not like being confronted about things we lack or need to work on in our lives. But a confrontation can be helpful. After seeing Christ transformed, Peter, James, and John were confronted by their own inability to heal someone. And the truth is that we are confronted daily by our inability to do the works that Christ said we are to do. We can choose to explain that away, or we can let it show us what we need to seek Him for and press into it. Show Notes: Peter, James, and John were with Yeshua (Jesus) on the mountain when He was transfigured or, in another sense, transmuted into the form He had with the Father before He took on human form. The three disciples witnessed this, just as Christ had told them that they would see Him coming in His Kingdom. When these disciples came down from the mountain, they were faced with a sharp contrast between this revelation of the Kingdom and the application of it in the natural realm. The disciples were unable to heal as Christ expected them to. This was a tremendous comparison that is very applicable to us today. The disciples saw the absolute difference between the level they were on and the level Christ was on in His relationship with the Father. And we live daily with this same comparison. We are to have a relationship with Christ and the Father in the Spirit. Yet we tend to think that the way we function in the natural realm is normal, whereas the spirit realm is something we cannot explain or relate to or participate in. In contrast, the Scriptures tell us that we are born again of the Spirit to walk and function in the spirit realm. We need an honest comparison rather than making excuses or trying to explain away what we read in the Word. Let us examine ourselves and ask: What are we not moving in that we as believers should be able to move in? We have been baptized into the same Spirit that empowered the apostles to heal the sick, raise the dead, and cast out demons. And it is good to take a moment to evaluate where we are by comparison. Certainly, there are things that we already have. But there are still things we need to seek the Lord about rather than feeling like everything is fine the way it is. Key Verses: • Matthew 16:28. “Some … will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His Kingdom.” • Matthew 17:1–8. “He was transfigured before them.” • Exodus 33:9–11. “The LORD used to speak to Moses face to face.” • Exodus 34:30–35. “The skin of Moses' face shone. So Moses would replace the veil over his face.” • 2 Corinthians 3:18. “We all, with unveiled face … are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory.” • Matthew 17:9–20. “I brought him to Your disciples, and they could not cure him.” • John 3:3. “Unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” • Acts 17:28. “In Him we live and move and exist.” • 1 John 4:17. “As He is, so also are we in this world.” • Philippians 3:10. “That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection.” Quotes: • “To me, my walk with God is not fine the way it is. I need to grow into the things that God has for me. I need an experience like this transmutation that comes into a higher form, a higher element of what God really has available for us.” • “I'm not saying you're going to walk around in some strange form. You're going to look maybe just like you are right now, but you are going to be in a higher form, moving in elements of God's creation as Christ did.” • “Don't try to get rid of the littleness of faith. Try to get a belief in the absolute power of the resurrection of Christ that dwells in us.” Takeaways: 1. Yeshua told the disciples that some of them would not see death until they saw Him coming in His Kingdom. Then three of them saw Christ transmuted into a higher form in an experience known as the Transformation. This revealing of Christ in the form He had before coming out of heaven into earth is what He related to the Kingdom. 2. Immediately after this experience of Christ's Kingdom, the three disciples who witnessed it were confronted on the natural level by a healing that the disciples were incapable of doing. This was a moment of comparison that we should see as being important for us. It is a good thing for us to evaluate ourselves. We need to evaluate where we are in our walk with the Lord, especially in our ability to live and move in the realm of spirit. 3. The Scriptures tell us we are to walk in the Spirit and by the Spirit and dwell in the Spirit in Him. It is not that we only have a little bit of faith in that. It is that we have absolute belief against it. We believe in the natural world and our physical humanity to such an extent that it is impossible for us to believe in our ability to live in the spirit realm. But we were baptized into His death and raised into His life, and that life dwells in us now. We need to learn to walk in that and live there. That is our reality.
EPISODE 278 - Lori Ann Wood - How An Incurable Heart Failure Created a Divine DetourMy heart journey began in November 2015: the physical part on November 27, the spiritual part three weeks earlier. On November 6, around 10:00 pm on a stretch of highway a few hours from my home, I prayed specifically for God to make my life matter in His Kingdom and pledged that I would do anything to that end. Immediately, apprehensive tears streamed down my face as I realized the weight of that promise.Less than a month later, I almost died from heart failure from an unknown cause: severe idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy. I soon learned I had an EF of 8% and spent 14 days in the hospital, most of it in ICU, as doctors tried to save my life. All of this despite having no risk factors, no family history, low blood pressure, low cholesterol levels, and a recent medical evaluation declaring that I had less than 3% chance of ever developing heart disease. I was emergency flighted to Cleveland Clinic and became their most critical patient for 16 months. During that time I wore a Life Vest external defibrillator, carefully titrated my meds to maximum dosages, and eliminated sodium from my diet. I was eventually implanted with a Biventricular CRT-D, a combination pacemaker/internal defibrillator.Meanwhile, thousands of people prayed for me around the clock despite a grim prognosis and sympathetic tears from every doctor we encountered. Some would say nothing much happened for many, many months, but the miracle was that I survived. Peace enveloped my husband and I, and we held on tight and trusted. Against all medical odds, my EF was restored on March 27, 2017.I don't want to mislead you into thinking my journey is over, that the story is fully written. I have had setbacks since, physically, and even spiritually. But God showed up countless times throughout the journey and continues to walk through this with me, as I put my today and tomorrow in His tender, merciful hands, and wait for what is next. I trust in God as a loving father. If He chooses to normalize my heart and grant me years into old age, then may He receive all praise and glory. If God has a different story that He is writing, please pray I can endure that journey with the grace and peace that is only experienced through the Spirit of God. Thank you for caring enough to join me in this___https://loriannwood.com/ National Podcast Post Month is celebrating 16 years! Join the 30 days of podcasting fun starting on November 1st! #NaPodPoMoSupport the showAre you looking to hire a podcast editor to do the behind the scenes work for you? Do you want to be a better Podcast Guest?Searching for How To Start a Podcast?Looking for Podcast Tips?Visit HowToPodcast.ca for practical advice, featured guest co-hosts from around the world and a community of podcasters dedicated to your success - join Dave and the entire podcast family at https://howtopodcast.ca/