(Matt. 4:18-20 esp. V.19) Jesus walked up to Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were fishermen casting their net into the sea. (V.19) Jesus said; “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Jesus left out one important fact, or maybe He figured they, being fishermen, already knew it, or maybe Jesus didn’t tell them He was running an on-the-job training program, or maybe He knew, at that stage of their Christian experience, they’d run for the far hills if they knew what following Him would cost them. Being fishermen, they should have understood: Catching a fish is one thing, cleaning a fish is another!
Said another way; It’s a lot easier and more fun to catch a fish than it is to have to clean the slippery, wiggly, smelly, uncooperative thing! That’s why Pastors have more wrinkles, grey hair and that wore out look earlier in their lives than do Evangelists. Do you see what I mean? If not, read this paragraph to your Pastor; I’m sure he’ll be glad to enlighten you.
If you don’t have the nerve to ask him, take a look at his britches he wears around his house, the knees will be worn shiny from praying over his congregation and I’ll bet some of it is about you! Ditto my Pastor for me.
You must understand this: Jesus did not bring a religion. Jesus did not bring a denomination, not even yours, not even mine. Jesus did not bring a bunch of impossible to keep rules and laws so He could have an excuse to send us to hell.
(John 14:1-23 esp. V.9, 18 & 23) In his nail scarred hands Jesus brought the OFFER of an individual, personal relationship with God (1John 4:8 & 16) founded on love because God is love, (Rom. 5:8 & Gal. 2:20) based on love because Jesus loved us enough to die on a cruel, bloody cross so we can get saved and (from Rom. 1:1 through Rev. 3:22) built on love after we get saved by keeping our individual, personal relationship with God alive and (Eph. 4:15, 1Pet. 2:2 & 2Pet. 3:18 keyword: grow) ever growing (building it) in love through the Holy Spirit, God’s Holy Word, our own values, desires, attitude, activities and abilities.
Christians lack of love for Jesus: is
Is why you see so many people that say; “I used to be a Christian BUT–, I used to go to Church BUT—.” It’s always some other person’s fault too; “If they hadn’t—, They said—, They acted—, They looked—.”
Is why Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, told the Apostle to write; (2Tim. 3:13) “But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.
Is why Christians do not know the Bible, will not go to Bible study, will not witness, will not pray, will not help on church projects, will not turn off the electronics and have some quality Jesus time at home, will gossip rather than testify about Jesus’ goodness in their lives, will not help people in trouble, will miss Church over nothing, will not pay attention to the preaching, would rather fish, go bowling, play golf, picnic, be lazy and etc. instead of going to church.
Is why; “I had a sore throat, I cheered my team too loud last night.” “My shoulder was sore from bowling.” “I was tired.” I had to go do—–.” “My back was out from playing golf.” “I skinned my knees from working in the yard yesterday.” “I had to go see—–.” The list is endless.
Is why Jesus said; (Rev. 3:15-16) “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue (projectile vomiting) thee out of my mouth.”
(John 3:14-18) This scripture tells how much Jesus loves you. If you want to read the proof of His love for you please click on the commentary God, Satan and Man: The Relationship and read Part 25 THE CONCEALED COVENANT LAMB IS SACRIFICED. It took 7004 words. That is why it is not repeated here. SO:
How much do you love Jesus?
I guess by now you think I feel like I’m Mr. Perfect, don’t you? Go to the commentary Sin in Church and read the 7 article series titled Growth as a Christian: The Survival Principal then the three article series Judging: The Authority Principal. In those are stories about how, not long after I got saved, I wound up in a bloody, knockdown, drag out fist fight with the man who tried to run down my oldest son with a vehicle BUT you’ll also read the story about what happened the first time I met a different man, 14 or 15 years later, who did kill my oldest son.
You’ll see how I had learned to commit forgiveness instead of committing murder. There are a lot of stories about my walk with Jesus and all are about how Jesus, in His Holy Spirit form, was always there nurturing, growing, guiding, chastising, putting up with and always loving me, His useless, unprofitable servant. That’s how this website got its name, Jesus Me And Why.
Before I go on I’d like to tell you this story that happened more than thirty years ago. It’s about a sinner that got saved but more important it’s about a Pastor who let the light of Jesus’ love shine through him in spite of a terrible event. I won’t name the Church or its location and I won’t give any names. You’ll understand why after you read it.
A wicked man started coming to a revival. He loved to drink, fight, run after women, curse; well, he just barely skated on the edge of the law and managed to stay out of jail except for an overnighter once in a while. Lots of people were afraid of him. He had bold, I dare you eyes, a big, burly man with a swagger.
A few nights after he started coming to the revival he went to the altar and he didn’t go with a swagger either, head down, crying, shoulders slumped he went with giant steps and just fell there like he was shot and the Pastor went right down with him.
The congregation was so shocked it is quite possible nobody prayed, it was over too fast. The Lord saved him and he came up crying, shouting, laughing, shaking, waving his arms and he just had to tell what Jesus had done for him; and he did too, oh my how he did.
Then he got started on how the devil had deceived him and used him all those years and he got madder and madder, redder and redder, louder and louder and then he started cursing’! He cursed the devil until a fly wouldn’t light on him!
Then it hit him what he was doing and he stopped in mid-word, started crying and ran out of the Church. Every jaw was dropped in amazement and Pastor was white as a sheet, there wasn’t a sound. Then the Pastor started; “Aaahhhemmmm, uuggghh, ahhh, welllll, I guess our new brother has called the devil what all of us has wanted to at one time or another, especially me; a whole lot of times!”
“You two deacons go get him, I don’t care how far or how long, he’ll probably be at home, you tell him we love him and you bring him back here, we’ll be waiting because we love him, we need to pray with him and we need to get his baptizing arranged.
He’s still too close to what he used to be and we’ll have to help him grow in the Lord.” Beautiful, tender, loving, kindly, understanding words like that, under those circumstances, had to come straight from (Heb. 4:5) the Throne of Grace in heaven even if they were in the flat vowels of a baritone hillbilly vernacular.
After a while a boy that was watching out the window said car lights were coming up the road and it got still in the Church; still, the kind of still where you can hear your own heartbeat. A car stopped, doors slammed, the deep voice through the sobs, “Oh God, I’m sorry, I’m sooo sorry! Jesus saved me and the first thing I did was blow it! I’m sorry! I’m sorry! I’m sorry!”
“I’m sorry” came right on into God’s house that was bursting with the kind of (1John 5:8) Love that walks the aisles, the pews, the pulpit, walks the blood bought altar Jesus won for us on a bloody cross at Calvary and walks the tender hearts of God’s people because everybody there hugged him, patted on him, smiled with him and dearly, dearly loved him; and that man knew it too because that Love was reflected in his joyous face and shining eyes.
The Bible says God rejoices in the presence of the angels when somebody gets saved. It don’t say it in the Bible and I mean no offence to the Master of my forever but God just had to be grinning from ear to ear because that’s just the kind of person God wants, one that’s humble enough to say he’s sorry for his failure.
One that loves Jesus enough to try again, strong enough to surrender his own will and take up his cross, kind enough to never be demanding or obnoxious, relentless enough to never stop loving and learning, bold enough to fight and courageous enough to assault the gates of hell when he got (Eph. 6:10-18 esp. V.13 keyword: armour) his armour of God situated.
That guy was a big, strong, still young person BUT have you noticed that none of these things came from physical prowess and big muscles? They are all functions of attitude based on a person’s value of a relationship. Big or small, male or female, weak or strong, young or old Christianity is a love affair with Jesus exhibited by your attitude whether your attitude is strong love, mediocre love, or a minuscule (very tiny) love for Jesus.
Consider the above paragraph in this light. (Matt. 16:24-25 esp. V.25) Jesus said “whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it“. Consider that statement by this example of losing your life for someone else; a good parent loses their life one minute, one hour, one day, one month, one year at a time for their child or children. Any, well most, parents are shocked when you have that first child and you suddenly really realize the frightening responsibility you have to raise your child but most parents dig in and start learning how to handle it. It’s a life changer!
According to your amount of love for your child, your amount of your involvement with pleasing yourself and your amount of dedication of your time and your resources to your child you’ll be a good parent, a mediocre parent, a minuscule (of very tiny use) parent that raises sorry children OR a killer parent because some parents, more and more at this time, 2-5-13, hate their baby because it’s in the way and they kill their baby before it’s born or throw their baby away for somebody else to raise so they can go ahead and enjoy their life by pleasing themselves.
Getting saved is a life changer too and, unlike parenting there is a “how to” book called the Bible, and how you handle your relationship with God/Jesus minute, hour, day, month and year according to your amount of love, involvement, and dedication is up to you and your values. There’s another way to give your life for Jesus when people are actually killed for their Christian beliefs, values and work. Everybody has to die anyway so it really doesn’t matter does it? (Matt. 16:24-27) All that will ever count for anything is that we get saved (born again) and serve Jesus.
Think about this real hard and pick it apart because your eternal destination hangs in the balance: Your attitude about something is always expressed by your value of and allegiance (loyalty) to that something. That’s why God, through the Holy Spirit, had the Apostle James write (James 2:14-26 esp. V.17, 20, 24 and 26 keywords: faith without works is dead) because Jesus plainly said;
(Matt. 16:24-27) “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.”
As I asked a while ago; “How much do you love Jesus?”
(Gal. 5:19-21) “Now the works of the flesh are manifest,—-” The word flesh (sarx in the Greek) actually has two meanings when used in the scriptures. #1 flesh; is the body as opposed to the soul. It is the physical body of man we can see and touch, it is the external, temporary person. #2 flesh; is also carnality, the human nature with its frailties and passions. Soul is the personality, the psyche, self, me, heart. It is your soul the eternal person; the soul is the metaphysical person we cannot see or touch yet it is the person your friends know as well as they know your physical face.
EXAMPLES: (2Cor. 4:16) The outward man, the physical human body you the soul lives in will die, go into the ground and decay. (Rom. 2:28-29) You the inward man, you the eternal soul, will leave your body (Gen. 2:7) along with the eternal spirit of life God gave Adam before Adam started taking physical breathing when your body dies. PROOF: (Luke 16:19-30) Just like Lazarus and the rich man, you the soul with its eternal life will go on to whatever destination you have chosen while you the body and you the soul lived together in this temporary lifetime.
(Gal. 5:19-21 esp. V.19 keywords: flesh) The flesh, self, (human nature with its frailties and passions) wants to feel important, look important, act important, feel pleasing physical sensations, take the dare and do the forbidden thing and to be looked up to by other people. AGAIN. The flesh (self) craves things that feed self’s (the soul’s) pride such as power, prestige, popularity, ownership and wealth. And the flesh craves things, events and situations that bring pleasing sensations to you the body, such as sex and intoxicants.
Take some time every day to study yourself. What are your motivations? Do you really care if anybody else gets saved? (John 14:23) Jesus lives within you, He cared, (Luke 19:10) He came to seek and save the lost. Do you care? Are you a Christian for show at church on Sunday or are you a Christian who, through the week, is willing to pray, learn, grow, to change through the Holy Spirit according to God’s word and work humbly for God without fanfare?
You are a Christian! Christ-ian! It is your flesh (human nature with its frailties and passions and your body that craves physical sensation) that wars against (John 3:3-8, 2Cor. 5:17 & 1Pet. 1:23 keywords: born again) the new you, (2Cor. 5:17-18 esp. V.17 keywords: new creature: defined: new creation) the new soul, you became when you were reconciled to God by your born again (to beget again) event.
Just like the man’s story you read above whose passion overcame him and caused his mouth to express the hatred for what the devil had done to him you will find yourself, one way or another, expressing the carnal nature in your soul. (Matt. 10:22) “but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.”
Your human nature with its frailties and passions will war against your new Christian nature. Your soul will use your flesh (your body) to fulfill its wants and desires. It is your body and your attitude, you can use them for good, you can use them for evil, or you can use them for nothing; that too is your choice.
(Eph. 2:8) Getting saved is a free gift from God BUT according to (Matt. 10:22) God expects you to put forth the effort to stay saved. Yes, God will help you through the Holy Spirit and His Bible but, ultimately, it is up to you to keep trying. Your values will be tested by your Christian war with yourself, your flesh, your human nature with its frailties and passions. In other words; how much you love God, will be tested.
(Matt. 19:3-9) Divorce and entering into a second marriage, except if your spouse hath committed fornication, is adultery. Fornication is a catch all term that covers all forms of physical scripturally unapproved sexual acts including adultery. There is a spiritual fornication in which a person worships a false god.
There are many temptations of the flesh; they always follow the same pattern of seeing, thinking about, looking at, wanting to do, tinkering with and doing; here’s one: You are a married male Christian. This takes place over a period of time and (Gal. 6:8) every step of the way you will be warned by (Rev. 2:7, 11, 17 & 29 then 3:6, 13 & 22) the Holy Spirit’s voice in your thoughts; “You are sowing your own destruction; this is wrong; you gave your sworn word during your marriage vows; this is against everything God wants for you.”
You stop for coffee at the same place every day. You and the waitress get to know each other better and exchange friendly banter and little snippets of conversation; Self says; “It’s just a little harmless flirting; it isn’t where I need to be with God, but I’m not really doing anything wrong.”
The Holy Spirit won’t scream at you or bend your arms behind your back. There will be no thunder and lightning or other earth shaking supernatural events. There will only be (1Ki. 19:12) the still small voice within you; warning you, reproving you and (Eph. 4:30) you will feel God’s grief and disappointment in you.
(Prov. 5:21 & 15:3) God knows what you are doing! You will know you are about to commit marital treason against your wife and worse than that, if you have any God awareness left; you will know you are about to commit physical fornication which is spiritual fornication against God and against your Bridegroom Jesus.
The war: Your conscience is ashamed but your human nature with its frailties and passions is excited. The devil and self will make sure some trouble develops at home between you and your wife. The waitress is soooo sympathetic, concerned, and you think; “Well shoot, she makes me feel good.”
There’s the tight throated excitement when you casually invite her to have coffee someplace else so somebody can wait on her for a change. “Gee whiz it’s only for a few minutes.” It happens a few times. Your thoughts reassure you; and they try to reassure the Holy Spirit; “We’re just good friends, that’s all, just friends. I can’t help it if my friend is a woman. I kind of feel like I’m not where I need to be with God but I’m not doing anything wrong! My wife would raise cane, but I’m not really doing anything!”
Then you two go to another town for a meal and maybe a movie. The Holy Spirit will not force you abstain from sin because God will always protect your freedom of choice. You are not supposed to want to sin because of your love for God. You are not supposed to want to sin because you know it will grieve the Holy Spirit. You are not supposed to want to sin because it offends the blood shed on Calvary’s bloody cross by our gracious Saviour.
But the excitement has overwhelmed your guilt, the possibilities have overwhelmed your good sense and lust is overwhelming the Holy Spirit’s influence in your life because He only speaks with that little “thought” of warning that says; “This is wrong, you gave your word in your marriage vows before God you would cleave to nobody but your wife, You are a liar.” GOD’S HOLY WORD TELLS US WHAT SIN IS!
Then you the self tries to justify it to God; “This isn’t wrong, she’s good company, not like that old battle-axe I’m married to who’s grouchy as a stepped on baby; even the devil couldn’t live with her.” Then the devil chimes in with some scripture to help you out; “besides all that, (Gen. 2:24 & Matt. 19:5) the Bible says a man and woman are made for each other, it’s just for company.”
Think not? (Luke 4: 9-12) the devil perverted the meaning of scripture to Jesus by taking it out of context, why not puny little us. After a few dinner dates it is natural to want to go someplace private “Where we can kick back, watch some TV, and have some quality time together in private.”
Who are you kidding; both of you are thinking the same thing. If she’s lost she is the enemy and it’s her job to defeat you. If she’s a Christian she’s also a traitor. You have from that first smile until the moment of actual physical consummation to turn around and run like the devil is after you, and he is, but you won’t because you have developed the attitude of fornication.
You will have that cocky little feeling of pride there within you all mixed up with your fear, rebellion, excitement, shame and disgust at yourself. “Yep, this ole boy’s still got it. Somebody still finds me attractive enough to want me!”
(John 14:26) The Holy Spirit will remind you of what Jesus said; (Matt. 5:28) “But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust (covet) after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart (soul).” The Holy Spirit will call to your remembrance many scriptures during your journey into sin and (James 1:13-15) will be one; “But every man is tempted’ when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed, then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.”
According to that scripture you could have stopped and repented any place short of the act but if you had suddenly died any place during the process up until consummating the act you would be considered a physical fornicator because according to (Matt. 5:28) you were already a spiritual fornicator in your soul. (1Cor. 6:9-10) Fornicators shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (1John 1:7 thru 2:1) Yes, you can be forgiven for fornication (Heb. 10:25-31 esp. V.26 keyword: wilfully) except when you sin wilfully (voluntarily, willingly, of one’s own accord) after you have received the knowledge of the truth and you just received the knowledge of the truth.
(Psa. 139:7-13 & Prov. 15:3) The sad fact is the closer you get to what you are after the more difficult it is to stop and you completely forgot God is looking right at you, watching you. (Rev. 12:10) The devil will laugh and laugh and accuse you and mock you before God.
The pursuit of the woman was for bragging rights, pride, vanity Get some sex and keep it! See what I mean? The pinnacle of your conquest was a fleeting spasm that was gone almost before it began. You, the loser, was the one who was conquered because (Heb. 6:6) your sin made the hammer ring when you pounded the nail one more time into the Lord’s throbbing hand.
(Eccl. 10:1 keywords: a stinking savour) A shower does not remove the stink of your sin from God’s nostrils, only the blood of Jesus can remove sin and that removal of sin comes by genuine repentance and prayer.
More than likely, (2Pet. 2:18-22) like a dog returning to its vomit, you’ll go back again for another load of nothing! The same applies if it is a wife in that situation and (1Cor. 6:9-10) fornicators shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (1Cor. 6:18) “Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.” Fornication defined: (Greek word porneuo – porn-yoo-o: to indulge in unlawful lust of either sex or to practice idolatry).
Porneuo is the Greek source word for the English word porn/pornography. The world calls pornography just “a little harmless viewing”. God sure has a different definition doesn’t he? FROM EXCITING BEGINNING TO DISMAL END THIS IMAGINARY EVENT IS THE PATTERN FOR SINNING; LOOKING, THINKING, WANTING, DOING; JUST LIKE GOD SAID IN (JAMES 1:12-15 esp. V14-15). In this illustration How much did they love Jesus?
It surprises most Christians to learn there are three types of sin: (Matt. 5:27) #1 commission: (doing what we are told not to do); (Eph. 4:1-3) #2 omission: (failure to do what we are told to do); and (Col. 3:8) #3 attitude: which is in two parts: (“A” your personal (soul) disposition and “B” letting thoughts dwell on sinful activities).
Thinking about sinful things can become (Col. 3:1-9 esp. V.5) inordinate affections that demand release (Heb. 11:25) in the pleasure of sin for a season (James 1:14-15) which will bring forth death. You will make choices, they are your choices, and you are accountable for them!
(1Cor. 12:7-31 esp. V.10 & 31), A Christian must recognize both the Holy Spirit and the evil spirit! The easiest way to discern a spirit is that the Holy Spirit WILL NOT tell you to do something contrary to the Bible and the unholy spirit (Satan) will tell you to violate what is in the Bible. (Matt. 11:29-30) So, study the Bible! (2Tim. 2:15) Obviously the effort expended to rightly divide God’s word of truth is a test. Do you love God enough to want to learn about Him; to know Him?
(Heb. 4:11-16) (V.12) The Apostle Paul writes the word of God is a discerner (critical judge) of the thoughts and intents of the heart (soul). (V.13) All things are naked and open unto Jesus’ eyes. He sees everything we do and knows everything we think. Yes, Jesus is right there looking when we sin! (V.14) Jesus is our great high priest in heaven but it is up to you to hold fast (get a good grip, don’t let loose, keep trying) to your salvation and be the best Christian you can be.
God is on His throne and Jesus is sitting at the right hand of God. (V.15) Jesus knows how hard it is to resist temptation. (V.16) It is our right to come boldly to the throne of Grace, that we might obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Yes, sometimes, just like you, I don’t feel very bold in my approach to the throne of Grace if my Christian activities have been sub-par, sometimes I flee to it in the fear of my sin and sometimes I crawl to it in the misery of failure BUT I go, that’s all that will ever count—I go. (1Cor. 12:10) So it is imperative for a Christian to ask God to give him the gift of the discerning of spirits. (Eph. 6:11-12) If we don’t have that gift the devil will sucker us in just about any time he wants to. Think not?
Look at all the Christians who sit in Church like a bump on a log every Sunday then go home and don’t do anything for God all week long. They’ll probably say; “I didn’t sin all week.” (Matt. 12:33-37) but DOING NOTHING FOR GOD IS A SIN. (1Pet. 5:8) the devil is as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. THINK ABOUT THIS: IF THE DEVIL DEVOURS YOU THEN YOU HAVE BECOME PART OF HIM!
There is a prayer protocol. It is absolutely necessary to ask forgiveness for our sins at the beginning of each prayer (Psa. 66:18) because sin blocks our prayer and it simply will not reach God except when we (Rev. 2:5; 2:14-16; 2:19-22, 3:2-5; & 3:15-19 keyword: repent) repent and ask for forgiveness of our sin; that’s how we got saved in the first place when our sins blocked us from God until we repented and prayed.
(Luke 17:10) Come on now; tell the truth about the sin of omission, did you do everything you were supposed to do today concerning your relationship with God? What about your attitude; did you have a Godly attitude all day today? After you ask forgiveness for your sins (Heb. 13:15) tell God what you think of Him; it is called PRAISE. (Psa. 22:3) God inhabits the praise of Israel (Rom. 2:28-29 & Eph. 2:11-22) and Gentile (non-Jewish bloodline) Christians are spiritually considered part of the commonwealth (community) of Israel! I want God to inhabit my prayers! Praise God of what great things He has already done for you. If it were not for God’s protection (1Pet. 5:6-11) the devil would turn you into his yo-yo.
Tell God you understand He is really your only source of help; (John 15:3-5 keywords: “without me ye can do nothing”) it makes you feel good to be “counted on” doesn’t it? So does God/Jesus. After the protocol and you finish your other requests do not forget to ask God to bless you with more of the gift of discerning the spirits because (1Cor. 12:31) we are to earnestly covet (lust after) the best spiritual gifts. (Eph. 6:10-18 esp. V.11-12 &17-18) How are you going to know if it is (Luke 4:13 esp. V9-11 key: compare V.10-11 word for word to Psa. 91:11) the devil (Satan) trying to make you misunderstand the scripture (John 14:23-26) OR the Holy Spirit (Comforter, Holt Ghost) teaching you what the scripture is saying. AND:
(1Cor 12:4-13 esp. V.10 keywords: discerning of the spirits) The discerning of the spirits is a gift given to you through the Holy Spirit. Satan, the devil, will try his best to make you forget to ask for spiritual discerning and you will too because Satan does not want you to recognize him while he toys with you like a cat with a crippled mouse and he surely does not want you to recognize that he is trying to turn you into a deaf, disobedient person to the Holy Spirit’s efforts to make you a better Christian.
(John 8:44) Jesus said the devil is a murderer and a liar. The devil will tell you any lie to keep you from getting closer to God and he will murder you as a Christian if he can get you to do nothing but go to Church every Sunday, set there like a frog on a log and never get involved with God’s work. When you are busy learning about God and working for God it’s a lot harder for the devil to turn your thoughts and attitude toward sin.
(1Cor 12:4-13 esp. V.10 keywords: discerning of the spirits) How can you fight the devil if you don’t know him? Keep asking for the gift of discerning of the spirits periodically because you more than likely won’t get more than you immediately need. God likes to keep us talking to Him. (Col. 1:9-12, 1Pet. 1:1-10 & 2Pet. 3:15-18) Christianity is a growth process and God does not want you to have something you aren’t equipped to handle, it might scare you to death or cause you to be exalted. How much do you love God?
Have you ever seen a Christian get angry and quarrel at a waitress or a checkout clerk? Have you ever seen a Christian walk right on by someone who needs help like lifting a heavy object, opening a door for someone, stepping back to let an older person or a woman go first? Have you ever seen a vehicle with a Church or Christian bumper plate that identifies the driver as a Christian park in a handicapped spot and the driver walk without effort into a store? Have you ever “flipped off” another driver or crowded the right-of-way?
Ask the waitresses in restaurants what they think about the Church crowd that comes in after Church, they will tell you an ear full in a heartbeat about how rude Church people act. It’s a disgrace how some Christians act because they bring shame to Jesus’ name. When someone meets a Christian they should feel like they met “someone special” because of that Christian’s kindness, friendliness, warm conversation, good manners, humility and good humor.
Everybody, even His enemies, realized they had met “someone special” when they met Jesus, (John 14:23) Jesus lives within Christians so why shouldn’t people get the feeling they’ve met “someone special” when they meet you?
Here is a great way to get close to God. GO WITNESS TO LOST PEOPLE. Yes, it is that simple. (2Cor. 5:20-21) You will find yourself getting closer and closer to God as you expend effort to win souls for Him. Another surprise will be that you will become very, very careful how you act and talk as you more and more realize you are a representative for Jesus.
(Eph. 2:22) We are to be a habitation of God through the Holy Spirit. God saved us for Himself. Yes those hands hanging off the ends of your wrists are Gods. (Eph. 1:13-14 keywords: purchased possession) Your feet that were made for walking and your tongue that was made for talking belong to God and all the rest of you do too.
I’ll bet you can’t find one place in the New Testament that tells Christians not to witness and there are scores of scriptures that say we are supposed to be witnesses for Him. Make the words witness, testify, study and work in all their forms your first study project. Obtain a good concordance that lists every word in the Bible in alphabetical and scriptural order with their definitions in Hebrew and Greek.
In reality the unrevised King James Bible is the best Bible (obtain a copy of the Greek scrolls from a university and reference it out yourself, you’ll see). Just because some other edition is easier reading doesn’t mean you are getting all God is saying, you’ll see. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance is a very good concordance, it doesn’t tell you what to think, it shows you where words are located and it gives the definition of the words. Read the article About the Writer listed at the top to the left of the commentary titles and you will see my struggle with God’s Word and how God is the Author of this website, not me!
(John 14:26) You’d be safer to pray fervently and let the Holy Spirit guide your study of God’s word (Matt. 24:4-5, 2Cor. 11:13-15 & 2Tim. 3:1-17 esp. V.5 & 16) because the devil would be delighted to destroy you. (Luke 4:1-13 esp. V.10-12) Part of the devil’s temptation of Jesus was by quoting scripture out of context.
(Eph. 6:10-18) The devil will be delighted to freeze each Christian into inactivity if we don’t study God’s Word. Please read these scriptures–> (John 1:1-4 and V.14 & 1John 1:1-4 keyword in all: Word) and you will be shocked to realize that Jesus is the Living Word of God! Yes, that Bible you read is alive with Jesus.
(1Cor. 6:19) “What? know ye not that your body is the temple (to dwell, a shrine) of the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit) which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?”
(2Cor. 13:5) “Examine (scrutinize, discipline) yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove (test, discern) your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except (otherwise) ye be reprobates (rejected, worthless, castaway)?” The only way to possibly do that is by God’s Holy Scriptures, the Holy Bible.
(James 1:22) “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” Have you ever considered the possibility that you might actually go to hell?
(Rev. 3:15-16) “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue (projectile vomiting) thee out of my mouth.” Have you ever been so sick to your stomach the hot vomit just shot out of you? Do you think lukewarm Christians make Jesus sick to His stomach? Do you really think Jesus will spue a lukewarm Christian out on some remote corner of heaven to fester there? It’s your call.
Some might say; “Wow that’s heavy stuff man.” (Matt. 11:29-30) Jesus didn’t think so; “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
Do you think inviting someone to church is a testimony? No, it is not! It is an invitation to go someplace. Get yourself on fire for God. Pray for God’s revelation, ask Him to teach you to witness and how to use your own life experiences to relate to people, beg Him to fill you with His Holy Spirit, and give you the ability to paint heaven and hell in people’s thoughts with your words. The hardest scripture you will ever remember to use is (Rom. 10:8-13); the devil will see to it because he hates that scripture.
Pray for the Holy Spirit anointing so your words will cause the lost to live it with you as you tell them the unsearchable riches and mercy of God when He drew you; called you, revealed Himself and reproved you until it was time for you to choose heaven or hell. Learn how the scripture was used in your own salvation. Beg God to Holy Spirit inspire you with an eye opening testimony, based upon scripture, that will shock lost souls, open their eyes and plant the seeds of salvation.
How much do you love (John 14:23) God/Jesus? Do you love Jesus enough to act like Jesus through the Holy Spirit of Jesus who lives within you? Do you love Jesus enough to do the works Jesus wants you to accomplish through the Holy Spirit of Jesus who lives within you?
If you wish a salvation article to hand out to your lost loved ones, neighbors or even strangers, make copies or email a link of the one-article commentary Breath of Life to introduce people to God’s salvation process and the article Backsliding: The Failure Principal located on the menu of the Sin in Church commentary which shows people the personal relationship of love Jesus desires with His Christians AND how the high court of heaven works. Satan is the evil spirit and he works in a person’s thoughts just like the Holy Spirit.
When a person starts thinking about going to church, Satan the evil spirit whispers into their thinking; “Don’t start going to church yet. Wait until you can live perfect and you won’t be like those hypocrites in your family OR next door OR down the road OR wherever. When they find out all Christians sin, even the apostles and that God made a way for us to obtain forgiveness (Heb. 4:12-16 esp. V.14-16) at Jesus’ throne of grace when we sin and it opens the door of understanding for them. I carry them in notebooks and give them out wherever I go and people have come back and told me the articles started them on the road to salvation, sometimes even multiple members of their family. Only God can do that through the Holy Spirit, not me!
GOD BLESS YOU.