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1 December, 2017 11:35

December 1, 2017

IS OUR WORSHIP WORTHY OF OUR KING?

I may be left-handed and tone deaf but I love to sing. My problem is that if I raise my voice too loudly I’m prone to draw the attention and ire of those around me. The only way to overcome this troubling and embarrassment predicament is to have those around me sing louder than I do. While that sounds like a simple solution to my problem it doesn’t help. The fact is, I’m surrounded by fellow believers who barely sing.

I’m a committed member in one of the largest churches in town with an incredibly gifted group of singers and musicians and yet when the worship leader points his microphone out toward the congregation you can hear a pin drop.

Recently our daughter was home from the mission field and after we arrived home from a morning service, she said to me ‘Dad, why don’t they sing at your church?’ I told her that this had been troubling me for some time and thanked her for confirming my own observation. She went on to tell me that the church she attends in _____, the entire congregation sings at full volume drowning out the worship team.

The scriptures abound with exhortations about singing, clapping hands, raising hands, dancing and shouting to the Lord etc. The fact is that according to Peter, we gather as living stones to form a temple in which we are to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

One of those sacrifices we are exhorted to offer is the sacrifice of praise. Notice though that the sacrifice has to be acceptable. In other words the Great High Priest the Lord Jesus Christ either accepts or rejects our sacrifice depending on whether the sacrifice meets His standard or not. We read all about this in the book of Malachi, where we find God rejecting the sacrifices of His people because they didn’t measure up to His requirement. God even goes as far as to tell the gatekeepers to shut the gates of the temple because their worship from His viewpoint is useless.

In the third chapter of Malachi we are confronted with robbing God due to not bringing Him our tithes and offerings. Everyone knows that this passage is used (and perhaps abused) effectively when it comes to reminding the congregation to give. The fact is this also applies to ‘the sacrifice of praise’ When the congregation assumes the role of being more of a spectator than a participator then we too are guilty of robbing God of the worship due His Holy Name.

The role of a worship leader is to lead. Many times the worship team are caught up in their own world with their eyes closed and lost in wonder, love, and grace. The worship leader especially should be aware of the congregation’s involvement or lack thereof. His role is to inspire, exhort, encourage and stir the people to offer God their very best; not just some half- baked, mediocre, lackluster expression passed off as worship.

Perhaps I just need to forget about those around me and raise my voice regardless. After all, my focus should be God alone and He looks at my heart more than what’s coming from my head.

This is the time of year when we celebrate the birth of Christ and recall the story of the three magi bringing their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. They clearly understood that their gifts had to reflect the worth of the one to whom they brought them. Shouldn’t our worship do the same?

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2 November, 2017 13:53

November 2, 2017

PULLING DOWN STRONGHOLDS

For months prior to our last Presidential election I found myself repeatedly praying that God would bring to light the hidden things of darkness. I’ve continued to pray the same ever since. Much of our political system, I believe, is driven by demonic forces. These spirits seek to manipulate and influence whoever they can to oppose any and all righteousness. Our former President and many of his appointees were pawns to these powerful spirits of darkness. Although we now have a new President in the White House these same forces continue to work to undermine God’s purpose for our nation. One thing is certain and that is that these spirits can’t be banned but they can be bound! No legislative act is going to limit their influence so that means there is no political solution to the problem, only spiritual. The Church alone has been entrusted with the power to change things. That power is released through the fervent praying of God’s people. God has provided us with weapons that are more than adequate for the task. Yes, we can pull down strongholds and effect Godly change in our nation.

I recently read the following article that clearly exposes what is going on in our nation to undermine our current government. Keep in mind that a nation divided cannot stand. Hopefully this article will provide you with some insight as to what is going on behind the scenes. It is then up to us to ask God just how to effectively pray and stop these destructive forces from dividing our nation.

The Enemy Amongst Us!!

"When Krauthammer provides his opinion and facts, he’s definitely someone to listen to!" DS

Oct 11 2017

Krauthammer is about the best and brightest journalist and political analyst we have, in my opinion. His words of warning in the below message should be taken seriously and spread throughout the country so as many of our citizens as possible are made aware of what is happening right under our noses!

An article from the New York Post:

I do not understand how living in a country with its democracy established over 200 years ago, and now, for the first time in history, suddenly we have one of our former presidents set up a group called "Organizing for Action" (OFA).

OFA is 30,000+ strong and working to disrupt everything that our current president’s administration is trying to do. This organization goes against our Democracy, and it is an operation that will destroy our way of governing. It goes against our Constitution, our laws, and the processes established over 200 years ago. If it is allowed to proceed then we will be living in chaos very much like third world countries are run. What good is it to have an established government if it is not going to be respected and allowed to follow our laws?

If you had an army some 30,000 strong and a court system stacked over the decades with judges who would allow you to break the laws, how much damage could you do to a country? We are about to find out in America!


Our ex-president said he was going to stay involved through community organizing and speak out on the issues and that appears to be one post-administration promise he intends to keep. He has moved many of his administration’s top dogs over to Organizing for Action.

OFA is behind the strategic and tactical implementation of the resistance to the Trump Administration that we are seeing across America, and politically active courts are providing the leverage for this revolution.

OFA is dedicated to organizing communities for "progressive" change. Its issues are gun control, socialist healthcare, abortion, sexual equality, climate change, and of course, immigration reform.

OFA members were propped up by the ex-president’s message from the shadows: "Organizing is the building block of everything great we have accomplished Organizers around the country are fighting for change in their communities and OFA is one of the groups on the front lines. Commit to this work in 2017 and beyond."

OFA’s website says it obtained its "digital" assets from the ex-president’s re-election effort and that he inspired the movement. In short, it is the shadow government organization aimed at resisting and tearing down the Constitutional Republic we know as AMERICA.

Paul Sperry, writing for the New York Post, says, “The OFA will fight President Donald Trump at every turn of his presidency and the ex-president will command them from a bunker less than two miles from the White House."

Sperry writes that, “The ex-president is setting up a shadow government to sabotage the Trump administration through a network of non-profits led by OFA, which is growing its war chest (more than $40 million) and has some 250 offices nationwide.

The OFA IRS filings, according to Sperry, indicate that the OFA has 32,525 (and growing) volunteers nationwide. The ex-president and his ‘wife’ will oversee the operation from their home/office in Washington DC.


Think about how this works. For example: Trump issues an immigration executive order; the OFA signals for protests and statements from pro-immigrant groups; the ACLU lawyers file lawsuits in jurisdictions where activist judges obstruct the laws; volunteers are called to protest at airports and Congressional town hall meetings; the leftist media springs to action in support of these activities; the twitter sphere lights up with social media; and violence follows. All of this happens from the ex-president’s signal that he is heartened by the protests.

If Barack Obama did not do enough to destroy this country in the 8 years he was in office, it appears his future plans are to destroy the foundation on which this country has operated on for the last 241 years.

If this does not scare you, then we are in worse trouble than you know.

So, do your part. You have read it, so at least pass this on so others will know what we are up against. We are losing our country and we are so compliant. We are becoming a "PERFECT TARGET" for our enemy!

Charles Krauthammer

7 July, 2017 15:01

July 7, 2017

OVERLOOKING THE OBVIOUS!

The role of any Christian father is to raise his children to be Godly, obedient, polite, hard working, honest, compassionate, prayerful and purposeful. Imagine then having the job of evaluating a father’s effectiveness in his role as a father.

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You begin by checking his marriage license to make sure he is married. Then you talk to his wife to see how they are getting along together. You may even go as far as having him take a complete physical with x-rays and blood tests. Following that you ask to examine their financial records to make sure everything is in order and that they are paying all their bills on time. Having completed that task you then delve into the way the father keeps his home; are his lawns well maintained and does the house need painting? Following this thorough examination you announce that the father has passed with an A+ and is in fact an exemplary father for all to admire.

Perhaps as you read this you thought to yourself did anyone ask the children what their father was really like? If anyone knew what the father was like it would be the children, and yet they were never asked.

I recently attended a church service where one of the board members told the congregation that they had recently been audited by several pastors. These men were brought in to go through the books, to make sure the church was financially sound. Then they spoke in detail to the pastor and his wife all of which took several days to complete. The board member then proudly announced that they were in ‘good hands’ spiritually because those giving oversight had found nothing wrong. My only objection with this whole approach was that the sheep were never asked to give their opinion. Ask any married man how his marriage is doing and he will possibly say, great! Then ask the wife about her husband and she may give you an entirely different story.

This type of assessment is carried on year after year in some congregations without ever hearing from those who sit faithfully in the pews every week supporting the church with their tithes and offerings. Added to this is that in many churches the congregation is taught to honor and respect their leaders no matter what they do. While I am in full agreement with honoring those in authority, we must be careful not to over do it lest we create immunity for those who may be self-serving rather than serving the people. You may recall God’s anger against Eli who honored his sons more than the Lord. He knew they were acting ungodly and yet he let them get by with it. God eventually took their lives as a result of their actions.

Here is my suggestion to evaluating the spiritual condition of a church. By all means go through the financial records, the marital state of the pastor(s) but then randomly select 10-20 people from the congregation who have no official position in the church and ask them for their opinion on how things are going. At least in that way you’ll have a more accurate assessment of the true condition of the church and leader.

8 June, 2017 20:10

June 8, 2017

WHAT KIND OF FATHER WOULD DO SUCH A THING?

Several days ago virtually every media organization in the country covered the story of a 27-year-old father in Oklahoma who went to the home of his estranged wife and held her at knifepoint while he tried to drown their three-month-old twins in a bathtub. Fortunately, a twelve-year-old girl who was in the home at the time ran to a neighbor’s house for help. That neighbor grabbed his revolver, entered the house, and shot the father twice in the back. He died later in the hospital of his injuries.

The two children, a boy and a girl, were airlifted to an Oklahoma City hospital and were released the following day. According to the police the babies are doing great.

There is little doubt in my mind that this father was seriously mentally deranged or demon possessed. What loving, intelligent, compassionate father would ever dream of harming his own children, let alone taking their lives in such a heinous and cruel way?

Stories like this make your blood boil. Jesus defended the little children by stating that ‘whoever offends one of these little ones that believes in Me, it would be better for him to have a millstone hung around his neck and that he be drowned in the depth of the sea.’

While I have difficulty trying to comprehend such evil I can rationalize to some degree that this resulted from man’s fallen, sinful, selfish state. What I really fail to understand is the belief that God the Father would indiscriminately plunge his own creation to eternal destruction, not because of their sin, but simply because He so chooses.

Look at this statement from a nationally known speaker and author.

“But I am not ignorant that God may not have chosen my sons for His sons. And though I think I would give my life for their salvation, if they should be lost to me, I would not rail against the Almighty. He is God. I am just a man. The potter has absolute right over the clay. Mine is to bow before His unimpeachable character and believe that the judge of all the earth has ever and always will do right.”

What the writer is reasoning here is not in favor of a loving God who so loved the world but rather a God who only selected a limited number of souls to be saved. The doctrine of a limited atonement is no different than the Oklahoma man who simply choose to kill his two children for no other reason than his own perverted pleasure. What I find repulsive about this author’s statement is that he basically says that he would willingly offer his own life for the life of his sons thereby declaring his earthly love is superior to God’s.

Didn’t Jesus say ‘If you being evil know how to give good gifts to your children how much more shall you heavenly Father give…’ According to the Bible I read and the God I love, He takes ‘no delight in the death of the wicked.’

Prayer: God forgive us for teaching such a distorted picture of your incredible nature and character. As our heavenly Father you are not willing that any should perish but you ever ‘seek for ways to bring back your banished ones.’

Thank you for not sparing your own Son but freely offering Him up for us all.

You truly are a good, good Father!

5 May, 2017 21:27

May 5, 2017

PRAY

America is in desperate need of a visitation of the Holy Spirit. Our nation is divided not only racially, politically, ideologically, but also theologically. We know from God’s Word that a house or kingdom divided cannot stand. One has to wonder how many more months or years we have left before we experience some type of total collapse?

Only yesterday I was reading through the Book of Lamentations, which opens with this word. “How lonely sits the city that was full of people. She has become like a widow who was once great among the nations.” Jeremiah goes on to tell us. “For the Lord has caused her grief because of the multitude of her transgressions.” One of the reasons Jeremiah gives is, “Your prophets have seen for you false and foolish visions and they have not exposed your iniquity so as to restore you from captivity.”

No one would question America’s greatness in the world. We boast of having the world’s greatest Air Force, Navy, and Army of any nation on earth. What we fail to take into account is that at any moment we could be marred in the hands of the Potter due to “the multitude of our transgressions.” We have evolved into a nation that thinks of itself as being too big to fail. What we have failed to take into account is that there is a God who views the nations as mere grains of sand that can be blown away in an instant.

Just a few days ago Charisma Magazine published an article from a 90 year old Norwegian woman who prophesied years ago about the days in which we are now living. In her prophesy she warned that there would come a day in which, “Christians will not be open to penetrating preaching. They will not, like in earlier times, want to hear of sin and grace, law and gospel, repentance and restoration. There will come a substitute instead: prosperity (happiness) Christianity. The important thing will be to have success, to be something; to have material things…” She went on to say, “Churches and prayer houses will be emptier and emptier. Instead of preaching we have been used to for generations –like take up your cross and follow Jesus –entertainment, art and culture will invade the churches…” This certainly describes the condition of many if not most of our churches today. The message of repentance is very much needed, but sadly, not wanted.

The answer for our nation’s ills is simple. We need revival! The price for revival on the other hand is not as simple. Virtually every revival I read about was preceded by an intense hunger for God coupled with desperate and prolonged prayer. Like the disciples of old we have toiled all night and caught nothing. We desperately need to hear from God if we are ever going to see our churches and our nation changed.

Let me close by giving you a taste of what revival looks like. I’m quoting from the book Rent Heavens. The (Welsh) Revival of 1904 “If one were asked to describe in a word the outstanding feature of those days, one would unhesitatingly reply that it was the universal, inescapable sense of the presence of God… In 1904 the Lord literally rent the heavens, and scattered the satanic foes entrenched therein…A sense of God’s presence was everywhere… It mattered not where one went; the consciousness of the reality and nearness of God followed.” The book continues to describe how that from the mine pits to the amusement parks and from the football fields to the bars, people were gripped by the power of God.

If America doesn’t experience this type of revival we are doomed and will like Jerusalem of old fulfill Jeremiah’s prophetic word, “The kings of the earth did not believe, nor did any of the inhabitants of the world, that the adversary could enter the gates of (AMERICA) Jerusalem.

Pray, and keep on praying!

27 March, 2017 21:18

March 27, 2017

ANNIHILATION or VISITATION?

Congressman Peter King recently caused a firestorm over his comments about the flood of immigrants coming into America. The media immediately tried to paint him as a racist over his remarks. King however refused to back down, stating that he was not referring to race but rather to culture. His argument was that if the immigrant population doesn’t assimilate into our Western culture, but rather insists on maintaining their own, they will eventually weaken and destroy our culture and way of life.

King, I believe, is right in his viewpoint. Take the increasing migration of Muslims into America with their exploding birth rates; twenty years from now they will not only have outnumbered us but also radically changed our culture into their own. Once they gain the majority they will demand that we adapt and then adopt to their ways rather than their way to ours. This is the current problem facing my home country of England. Having opened it’s doors to any and all, it now finds itself with thousands of little enclaves that refuse to mix with those around them, while at the same time insisting that they be given the right to live and govern themselves according to the various cultures they came from.

Now where I disagree with Congressman King is that America has almost completely lost its Christian heritage and values, having replaced them with carnal, sensual, selfish, and worldly values of its own.

All that to say this, if America doesn’t have a God sent revival we are doomed!

Israel of old failed in this same regard. God told them not to mingle with the nations but they failed to listen or heed His voice; consequently they mingled with the nations, learned their ways (culture) and then began to practice their deeds, including the sacrifice of their children to demons and shedding innocent blood. (Psalm 106:34-38)

America is quickly adopting a far left agenda and culture that will soon destroy the very foundations of our great democracy. Consider how quickly the LGBT culture has impacted our society. Children are being taught that having two fathers or two mothers is as normal as having a mother and father. Muslims are demanding prayer rooms in our schools and colleges along with their own meal preferences etc. Now while all that may seem very innocuous for now, what happens when they become the majority and their lack of tolerance for anyone who wishes to live differently are considered as enemies for refusing to assimilate into their culture?

Which brings me back to our desperate need for revival. By revival I’m not talking about a series of meetings but rather a mighty outpouring of the Spirit of God that impacts our towns and cities resulting in societal change. I know that may sound far fetched for many of you but keep in mind the impact the early church had upon their world. ‘These men who have upset the world have come here also.’(Acts 17:6) If one can chase a thousand and two ten thousand imagine how many one hundred or one thousand could chase? If we don’t do the chasing we will be chased, and not for the better. I want to not only save America but see America saved! The alternative…I shudder to think…

6 February, 2017 15:47

February 6, 2017

FREEDOM!

I recently read the amazing story of how 600 prisoners of war sought to gain their freedom by tunneling out of the POW camp Stalag Luft 111 in Western Poland. Using primitive tools they had fashioned along with a few crowbars, shovels and hammers, they worked for several months on three separate tunnels they named Tom, Dick and Harry.

Using bed boards, tables and chairs to stop the tunnel from collapsing, they were able to dig down some 30 feet and tunnel over 300 feet. Many of the prisoners used fake German uniforms along with false identity papers, hoping to remain unnoticed and evade being recaptured once they escaped.

On the night of March 24th and 25th of 1944 some 76 prisoners escaped through one of the tunnels they referred to as Harry. Unfortunately, prisoner number 77 was spotted and the remaining 120 or so prisoners were detained. Of the 76 escapees only three made it back to Britain. Another fifty of them were executed by firing squad after Adolf Hitler became furious when he learned of their escape.

While the story contained greater details than what I have written, I couldn’t help but think of the tremendous cost of time and toil that they had expended in order to gain their freedom. Sadly, only three made it while dozens lost their lives trying. I can only imagine how those three felt when they realized how many had sacrificed their lives in order for them to gain their freedom.

What the story doesn’t tell us is whether or not any of the three escapees ever gained real freedom. I’m referring to the freedom from sin and the guilt of sin. Everyone, according to God’s word, is a prisoner. We are told that the one who commits sin is a slave or prisoner of sin. Some try to escape the guilt of sin through good works or church attendance, while others try and drown their guilt through drugs, sex or alcohol.

The good news is that Jesus Christ accomplished all the tunneling for us; leaving us the choice of accepting His freedom or remaining the captives of sin. If you are still frantically digging, hoping to gain freedom by your own effort, know this, the tunnel will never end and freedom will never come. Jesus has already provided you with a way of escape and all you have to do is believe in His finished work and step into His life-giving freedom. You can remain a POW or be FREE! The choice is yours.