IN THE HEAVENLIES

We’ve all experienced those winter time storms where it may be 35 degrees or more and yet snowing. Or those times when it might be 30 degrees or less than that and raining. What’s controlling these variances in temperature? What makes us experience an ice storm or hail storm is mainly because of 2 fronts meeting of warm and cold air. It can bring thunderstorms or spawn tornadoes. The Heavens have been declared as a great place where God has sat on His throne. Where angels pass back and forth constantly, a place where Satan and one-third of the angels was cast out of. What goes on in the atmosphere above us affects us here on earth in many ways.

There is a spiritual battle that affects not the weather but it affects our lives on how we live here on earth determining what is to happen with our lives for eternity. If the truth would register more with the souls of the people, we would recognize that our lives are more spiritual than physical. Yet it is how we handle life physically that helps determine where we will end up spiritually. Spiritual demonic forces (witchcraft) and spiritual warfare is real, even more so than we generally think about. Ephesians 6:12 says, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”

What is going on today is a great influx of spiritual warfare more than ever before. It used to be that the dark side of things stayed on the back streets, but today it has become bold and stands in our front streets daring Christians to try to stop it. Many people are ignorant to this. There is great turmoil going on today in the heavenlies. The Devil is no match for Jesus and he knows it. Believe me, there is no better place to be right now than under the protection of God’s hands. There is a very real battle going on for the souls of men and women, boys and girls, all over the world. Soon now God’s going to put an end to the satanic forces that are trying to destroy us. If you belong to Jesus, you’re in no better hands; but if you’re not, your eternal life is in jeopardy. How do you really stand with God?

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IF PEOPLE WANT TO GO TO HEAVEN, WHY DON’T THEY ACT LIKE IT?

Ask anyone where they want to spend their life after they die. Most always they will tell you they want to go to heaven. Of course, that’s the way it has always been. The Bible tells people not to get attached to this world because it is not your true home. But it seems the majority of the people that live on earth act like it will be.

Nobody lives forever here on earth. That can only happen in eternity, because our next address is permanent, heaven or hell. There is no other place of eternal residence, regardless of some of mankind’s opinions.

So let’s say you believe heaven is your next destination. Now, of course, the requirement is to have given your life over to the One who has the keys to it, and that would be Jesus. Unless a person repents of their sinful ways and lets God change their course in life, the road they’ll travel on won’t end up in heaven. Those who do, who place their lives in the hands of Jesus, should be really excited about going as soon as possible.

So what seems to hold people back that they would actually fight to stay here as long as they can? Well, it’s because they have too many attachments to this world, and that can really rob the true joy from a person’s life.

Your main goal in life should be to help secure your family and friends for the trip, as well as yourself. So cast off the attachments of the world so you can focus more on heaven and ensure that your family and friends are eager to follow you.

If Only

The book of Psalms is a book of the Bible that has many comforting words, a good place to go for those who have struggles.  It also is a book that lets all those that read it know the price that can be paid by those who choose to follow God’s instructions and those who don’t.  Today if only people would heed God’s word, how much better their lives would be.  If only people would truly repent of their sinful life styles and attitudes, they could find eternal life with God.

There are many who think they are in good with God but have really never repented of their sins.  They’ve just said a prayer someone might have told them to repeat but it really meant little for there was no change in their lives.  But somehow they feel they’ve got some kind of ‘get out of jail’ card that got them forgiven and now they are good to go.

Born again into the kingdom of God means just what it says. You are to be a new person in Christ.  If only people would truly repent, which seems to get left out by a lot of people who come to God with their problems.  If only they would repent of the very sins that continually dog their lives.  If only people would let Jesus have their lives.  If only they would want to give up sins and trade it for a life of what is true freedom.  No one on this earth will ever be free until they place their lives in the hands of the one who made them.  If only they would turn their attention toward Jesus.  If only today, for who knows for sure what tomorrow holds.

The Day Has Come

God expects His work to be done by His people.

 

God never candy coats the importance of His assignments for our lives. His plans are in-depth and all calculated out for completion.

 

So God’s plans will never be stopped, only hindered for a while because of people’s involvement or non-involvement.

 

Regardless, God’s will is a done deal; and it works to our advantage to work with God’s will, so it’s natural to believe that it can benefit us to work with God.

 

The challenge is the same for all of us. We either will or we won’t. It all depends on our obedience to trust God and to have a desire to see His greater purposes are done.

 

The Christian has more power than they realize in seeing God’s work to be done more fully and quicker advanced.

 

If the Christians in America would stand up and live their lives according to God’s Word and quit being passive in their faith, they could turn America and the world upside-down for the glory of God.

The world is a dirty place and as Christians come into contact with it, they will need to be cleansed by prayer and God’s Word continually touching their lives, or they will begin to look like the world does.

The day has come for the true people of God to take their place and stand for the ways of Christ and be willing to be used to touch the lives of people who themselves need something solid to stand on. Then we will stand firm in the faith as we face the future.

AROUND THE CORNER

How many times in how many places have you come around a corner and been surprised by something you weren’t expecting? Now I suppose it has happened to us all, but probably not very often. When we are alerted ahead of time, we are prepared for what’s around the corner. That is where I want to take you today for what‘s around the corner for us all and it is coming at anytime around a turn the world will make.

It is found in the Bible, 2 Peter 3:3-18. Here’s how the New Living Translation explains it:

Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires. They will say, “What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again? From before the times of our ancestors, everything has remained the same since the world was first created.”

They deliberately forget that God made the heavens by the word of his command, and he brought the earth out from the water and surrounded it with water. Then he used the water to destroy the ancient world with a mighty flood. And by the same word, the present heavens and earth have been stored up for fire. They are being kept for the day of judgment, when ungodly people will be destroyed.

But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day. The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief. Then the heavens will pass away with a terrible noise, and the very elements themselves will disappear in fire, and the earth and everything on it will be found to deserve judgment.

Since everything around us is going to be destroyed like this, what holy and godly lives you should live, looking forward to the day of God and hurrying it along. On that day, he will set the heavens on fire, and the elements will melt away in the flames. But we are looking forward to the new heavens and new earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness.

And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight.

And remember, our Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved. This is what our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom God gave him—speaking of these things in all of his letters. Some of his comments are hard to understand, and those who are ignorant and unstable have twisted his letters to mean something quite different, just as they do with other parts of Scripture. And this will result in their destruction.

I am warning you ahead of time, dear friends. Be on guard so that you will not be carried away by the errors of these wicked people and lose your own secure footing. Rather, you must grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Remember the words in the last few lines where it says we must grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord. That’s what you’re supposed to do, too. It is a very wise person who pays attention to the warnings soon coming to us around the corner.

I’m So Glad

When I look at the world around me today, I have very many deep personal concerns for the future of the young people of this great country I’ve been allowed to live in. I am very grateful to God that He allowed me to be born in America, a land of plenty and freedom. But as I look out around me at what seems to be the erosion of our society, I am so glad my life is in the hands of God.

My God is real. He created this world, and until He says differently, there will be season after season with many changes weaved in and out.

I am so glad that at age 30 God finally got my attention enough that a nowhere life stopped and a whole new one began. I’m so glad that God was gracious to me when I didn’t deserve it and now today He’s blessed many with opportunities that are a result of His providing hand. I am so glad that if my life would end tomorrow I’d find myself in Heaven, never to have to worry or struggle again about the cares of this world. And if tomorrow I’m still here, I am so glad that my friend, Jesus, is right here with me to help me through another day.

If this world would fall apart, I’m so glad that my future rests secure in my Heavenly Father’s hands and I need not worry about the provisions I need, for my Father God will provide whatever I need.

How about you? Are you glad, too, or are you missing something? Find Jesus as your savior, serve His interests and let yours go, and you’ll find out how to be glad as well.

WHERE DO YOU STAND?

The days of everyone in America socially embracing Christian principles in all areas of life is over. There are powerful forces at work to undermine the teachings of the Bible and force the true church to back down in its beliefs. The tide is rising against those who choose to stand for the teachings and lifestyle of Christ. God’s Word is being twisted, and males and females are demanding their own rights or own desires to be accepted by Christians and the rest of society- and they demand that you pay a price if you don’t.

Are you one of those who is willing to pay whatever it costs to stand for the truth of the Gospel of Christ? Or are you ashamed like Peter was when he was questioned and asked if he was one of Jesus’ followers, and he said, “I don’t know the man”? To be a witness for Christianity’s truths makes one a marked man today among a society that is seeming to grow intolerable of it.

Where do you stand for Christ, if it costs you your job, a friendship, separation among family or a position you hold in the community? Things used to be different. But today this nation that was founded on the principles of the Bible and Christ Jesus has people saying, “Away with this, give us Barabbas!”

Where do you stand concerning saying good is evil or that evil is good? Is all of the gospel true, or do you just take portions of it and ignore the rest? Someday there will be an accounting to be made with God. At that time the books will reveal just where you did stand.

The Attachments of “We Get”

Have you ever seen a dog or cat that has been outside running in tall grass or even under brush and see how their hair may get matted or have cockleburs or weeds entangled in their hair.

So it is like that in the world we live in as we go here and there being around other people and sometimes different places. We can also become entangled in the sins of life, and if they’re not quickly removed and dealt with, we can become even more entwined with those snares and they will soon become larger and larger until we actually can become overwhelmed.

Dealing with sinful habits is not, at first, always easy to do- it can be our language, jealousy, lying, lust, attitudes, gossiping or harshness. Oh, it can be a variety of things and all these areas can also get tangled together and create even larger problems than we started with.

Unless you deal with yourself, yourself will deal with you eventually, and matters will grow worse and affect many others around us even though we didn’t mean for it to. By the way, all those entanglements are sins that the Bible warns us about, and we need to address these sins quickly or the cost will grow out of control.

Jesus can fix this problem and help smooth areas out, but He has to have control, and you’ve got to give it up. And here, then, rises the greatest snare of all: pride. Well, you get the picture. Want your life loosed from sin’s entanglements? Then repent and turn them over to Jesus, and greater things can be done with a life that is free and able to live as it should.

GIVE US A KING

The Bible has a well-known story to most in the book of 1 Samuel, and it begins to build in chapter 8 and goes on from there of how Israel demanded a King from God.

Now God had always given Israel those that would rule and help the people at various times, but this was different. You see, the people no longer wanted God’s choices and ways to help them. They wanted to be like other countries that had a king. Even though this was not what God wanted for them, they kept demanding a king even though it could have many problems with it.

Finally God allowed them just what they asked for because the people rejected God’s way. In the verse in chapter 8, verse 7, God was saying, “For it is Me they are rejecting. They no longer want Me to rule them.”

So the people chose their own King and rejected God’s leadership and the country struggled and fell into sin deeper and deeper.

Sound familiar? For the last several years, American has been in rebellion toward God. The people want their way and have voted in so many ungodly leaders at all levels from Washington to their cities. And sin has grown worse until ungodly laws have passed and righteousness is being challenged; many of the people want what they want and have rejected God’s ways.

And again as the Bible tells us how other societies have decayed because the people did what was right in their own eyes. People will get just what they keep asking for, but they will find out that they don’t want it. But it will be too late. Only a holy act of God can ever turn the people around.

We must pray for this to happen. For who knows what tomorrow holds? Remember, King Saul was the people’s choice, not God’s; and we’ve chosen many Sauls again today.

NOT EVERYONE GETS TO GO

Everyone wants to, or most say that they do. So many have the idea that they will go regardless of what the Bible says. But there are those who believe that just because God is love, they will get the opportunity to go to heaven when they die. Now there are always a few who could care less, but let death knock at their door and their attitude changes.

Now I am talking about the majority of the people in the world who rarely go to church but believe they have some kind of a spiritual link with God Himself. Yet there are quite a few behind the church doors that are in just as bad of a position with God as the others that think they will get a free pass someday to heaven.

The true God of the universe is not cruel, nor hateful, but He is real in His love and therefore must be just in it as well.

God Jehovah, the keeper of the great beyond, has established this heavenly place only for those who are true to Him alone. He cares very little for this world, for He could build another one just like it in a couple of days. He does care for the people of this world. But He cannot, even for a moment, tolerate sin that goes against His Word, the Bible.

Some, today, want to redirect God’s original words. And they can, but it doesn’t change God’s original intent. Some people buy into this, and, sad to say, even clergymen’s words sometimes, that God accepts any lifestyle or understands people’s needs, and therefore people are free to go on and God will forgive.

But that is not the God-of-the-Bible’s way. Oh, He does forgive, but only if you repent. It is a nice thought to think everyone will go to heaven when they die and leave this earth. But in reality, only a small percentage will probably ever get there- and without Jesus, it’s not happening at all, for He is the only way. He knows exactly who belongs to Him, and who just think that they do. It is only by true repentance, a turn to follow Jesus, meaning born again into a new person. If you don’t, you are not going. And if you have and daily are forsaking this world’s ways and following Christ, then you will. You actually make the choice, and God only presents the alternatives.