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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Will Yeshua (Jesus) find faith?

Just stealing some moments with the Lord this morning while admiring a beautiful sunrise with glorious colours and pink clouds.. Just the kind I like!! I sense Him say, “It’s ok” ..”Be still and know that I AM God”..
Now, I want to share what has been troubling me lately.. Almost everything that is happening on planet earth at the moment – a great famine of the Word of God, Division amongst the body of Christ (with something like 33,900 Christian denominations)!! Poisoning of our foods!! Corrupt governments! Illuminati!  Aliens! Not that I think about these things often.  I have been trying to think of things that are lovely and pure over the last couple of days as I express many prayers and tears for my nephews who lost their daddy three days ago following a heart attack.. It just feels like everything is in my face at the moment.. I don’t want to ignore what’s going on!  Although I am feeling a little heavy in my heart, I don’t want to ignore or take for granted God’s amazing promises!
The following scripture just came to mind -  Luke 18: 8, where Jesus say’s “ When the Son of man comes will He find any faith?”
What captured my imagination as I meditated on this statement that Jesus made was the thought that He knew exactly what was coming ahead.. He knew the answer to that question before He even asked it.  It’s all written in advance.. God’s dwelling place is in eternity, which is outside of our knowable time dimension.. He knows the beginning, the middle and the end!  Yes, and I believe it.. God is omnipresent (everywhere) and omniscient (all knowing)..
One thing led to another and I began to ponder how much of my Christian walk has been based on “faith” verses “works”.  Scary question to ask I know.
A friend of mine recently shared what he believe the Lord had told him - that He is going to shake everything that can be shaken.  The purpose of this shaking will be to demolish the unhealthy confidence we have placed in the things of this world and to restore our confidence and faith in Him.  The only thing that will remain will be JESUS IN US.  When I look at world as well as local events, I believe it is already happening.
Consider the following verses from 2 Timothy 3:2-5 describing the last days “For men shall be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, stubborn, arrogant, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God, having a form of godliness, but denying its power.  And from such people turn away!”   This scripture speaks for itself don’t you think in summarising this current generation.
The form of godliness reference scares me I must say.  Many of us know the bible very well, but we do not know the LORD very well. We do not, or cannot, slow down enough to hear Him speak to us these days. Our whole life is driven by our own limited understanding and not by the leading of the HOLY SPIRIT.  We quote other men’s thoughts and interpretations but not the words and teachings illuminated by the HOLY SPIRIT.  We search all the latest ministries and Christian books for truth and by-pass the true TEACHER . The purpose of the HOLY SPIRIT is to TEACH us and to REVEAL JESUS to us.  How is it in the West that we have become so reliant on “men” or “men’s perceptions of how to do church” rather than the HOLY SPIRIT?   Is it any wonder that we are so devoid of TRUTH and POWER?

“ But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him”  1 John 2:27

“There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his own works, as God did from His.  Let us therefore be diligent to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.” Hebrews 4:9-11
God has promised us a new place of rest in Him.  We do not have to labour (in our own strength that is) to abide in His rest. I don’t know about you but I have had enough of a busy lifestyle, full of programs and sacrifices to try and measure up.  Bottom line is I believe that it is time to start living “IN CHRIST” and no longer “FOR CHRIST”.  It’s the age old battle between “religion” and “relationship”.  Which one is winning in your life?
What I am learning is that the diligence required to enter into that place of rest (Heb 4: 11) has nothing to do with our “works” but everything to do with our “focus”, ie keeping our eyes on Jesus.. “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith..” Heb 12:2.    “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You..”  Isaiah 26:3
So, my challenge to us today is, where are we looking, where are we placing our confidence.  If Christ, there ought to be peace and power flowing freely through us.  If not Christ, then bring on the shaking I say!  Better to be judged or tested now than on judgment day!

 Mary :)
2 Chronicles 7:14 .. If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.... Amen!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Blessed are the Disillusioned...

Blessed Are The Disillusionedby Chip Brogden

We really ought to thank and praise God that people are sensing something of the Lord's dissatisfaction with the way things are. Thank God for that disillusionment. People think disillusionment is a bad thing, but to be disillusioned means you have been stripped of your illusion. You had a fantasy about something, a false impression, and now that false impression has been exposed. You have seen the truth, and you have been dis-illusioned.
When people come to me and say they have been disillusioned with the church, I say praise the Lord - now you can make some progress! And when they come to me and say, "I'm so disappointed with God, I can't make sense out of my Christian walk. I'm so disillusioned," I say that is wonderful - now you're really beginning to grow up spiritually. You cannot see the truth about God, or about the church, or about yourself, until you stop living in the world of illusions. The opposite of illusion is reality and truth. Authenticity is the opposite of hypocrisy. We have already mentioned how much Jesus dislikes hypocrisy. Jesus is the one who disillusions people so that they can see the truth behind the illusion.
But some people are so in love with their illusions that they can no longer recognize the truth when they hear it. I was teaching in a home group one time and talked for forty-five minutes about the difference between Organized Religion and the Church that Jesus is building. There was a long silence at the end of what I had shared, and an older woman to my right said, "Well, you better not speak against the Church, because it is the house of God." I thought I must be a terrible teacher to speak for forty-five minutes and still not be able to show people the difference between the church building and the house of living stones. Then I realized the problem was not with my mouth but with her ears. Jesus said he who has ears to hear, let him hear.
Anything that does not give Christ the preeminence, or gets in the way of that preeminence, or distracts people from that preeminence, is under judgment. First Peter 4:17 says, "It is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?" Does anyone take the Bible seriously? Peter said judgment begins with the household of God. That's because God cannot, and will not, judge the world, or the people who do not know Him, until He has judged the people who claim to know Him.
When God judges His own household, and purges and refines His own people, the world will finally see that God means business, and He is righteous, holy, just, good, fair, and impartial. And when His Household is judged, the world will see it and be saved. God will accomplish more in two seconds than we have been able to accomplish in two millennia. Now, if you have trouble with that, if that's a little more than you can handle right now, then please pray about it and ponder it in your heart like Mary. Search the Scriptures and just keep it before God for now.
The substance of my message to you is this: that whatever good you may find in Organized Religion does not change the fact the Jesus continues to express His dissatisfaction with the things that He is not pleased with. He will have it all according to His terms or He will have not have any of it. It is called unconditional surrender; there will be no negotiation, there will be no terms. He will not allow you to keep something of the flesh, something of tradition, a little bit of legalism. Not one bit of it. Judgment begins with the household of God. You have been warned.
Jesus says "I rebuke the ones I love when I see them going astray" (Rev. 3:19). So He says to repent. And I say to you, repent. Change your hearts. Change your minds. Change your attitudes and perceptions of things. That's what you need to be concerned with; not changing the way you "do ministry," but changing the way you see God, and see the church, and see yourself.
I don't care if you are in church or out of church. That really doesn't matter to me. What matters to me is that wherever you are, you will remember that God's Ultimate Purpose and Intention is for Christ to have the preeminence in all things. And the reason why I must speak out and give this hard word about what's wrong with the church is because Christ does not have the preeminence in Organized Religion. At best it is a distraction from Christ, at worst it is a substitute for Christ. That is the bottom line. Put Him first and see what He says. Test this word. Ask God to show you the truth. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal these things to you.
If something has been said to encourage you, then praise God. If something has been said to upset you, then ask yourself why you are so upset. This message may very well be a tool that God wants to use to bring some much needed disillusionment. Be willing to be adjusted to Him. Don't resist the Holy Spirit. Don't harden your heart. Don't think it is just Chip Brogden having issues with the church. Lay aside your opinions, open your heart to God, search the Scriptures, and let Him show you the truth Himself.

This excerpt is taken from The Church in the Wilderness by Chip Brogden.

Monday, June 6, 2011

What are some of God’s absolutes? What are your top 3?

      I believe one of God’s absolutes is to come to Him in FAITH..  I think God initially gives us a little bit of Faith so we can come to Him.. and then our faith increases by our choice moment to moment to trust Him and do things His way, according to His will and also by hearing the Word, which to me that means getting closer and more intimate with HIM! He is the Word of God!
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6)

The original Greek word for “Faith” in the above verse actually means, “Confidence.”  When we have confidence that God loves us and will help us, something happens in the heart of God that releases His power towards us.  (Romans 8:31,32; 1John 4:18; 5:14,15)
In the New Testament we read that  Jesus, our Lord Yeshua, was limited in what He could do for people when they had no confidence in Him. (Mark 6:1-6)  However, wherever people demonstrated confidence in both His ability and willingness to use His ability on their behalf, miracles happened.

A great example is Abraham.. "Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him for righteousness."  Rom. 4:3; Ga. 3:6; James 2:23
Faith is the beginning point that connects us to Christ, it is what hooks us in!

The just shall live by faith.. Hab 2:4..

Next,                            The Fear of God – The Beginning of Understanding.
Throughout the Jewish scriptures we learn that “the fear of God is the beginning of understanding… wisdom… knowledge.” Indeed, the fear of God is a primary theme throughout the entire Old Testament:  The scriptures below speak volumes to me of how important it is to God..

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline (Proverbs 1:7)

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding (Proverbs 9:10)

But he stands alone, and who can oppose him? He does whatever he pleases. He carries out his decree against me, and many such plans he still has in store. That is why I am terrified before him; when I think of all this, I fear him. God has made my heart faint; the Almighty has terrified me (Job 23:13-16)

 “Should you not fear me?" declares the Lord. "Should you not tremble in my presence?" (Jeremiah 5:22)

It amazes me what the Lord said in Mathew 22 regarding Loving G-d and loving others.. v40On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets
     (Mt 22:37-40) God wants us to love Him and to love each other!
Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
God is LOVE..

My three at the present moment on my journey is  - LOVE and Unity..
1.      Love God, Love People.. In the early church we read that the believers were  "of one heart and one soul" (Acts 4:32).. and so God added to them…..

One scary thought is that In the last days.. hearts of many will grow cold.. “Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold”  Mathew 24:12 My prayer is that my heart is filled with His love everyday to reach a world that really need His love..

2.      Belief!
I think  we need to make a choice to  ‘believe’  To believe He is the great I AM and that He created all things..and that we are lost without Him..and to believe everything in His Word! The example in Hebrews of not entering His Rest because of unbelief is sobering!

Lets REMEMBER that faith choices are made moment by moment.. It would be fantastic if we could just do it once in the morning or something!!  It is my conviction there is no shortcuts.. We need to make faith choices, moment by moment... x

Heb. 3:17 "Now with whom was He angry forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose corpses fell in the wilderness?   18 And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey?   19 So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief."

We can always ask Him to help us to believe!

In this most amazing revelation of God’s heart towards us we read in  John 3:16: “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
 It must make Him grieve so much when we don’t believe Him..  He  has given us so much! We are so  blessed.. In Ephesians 2 we read that we are seated in heavenly places with Christ Jesus - Yeshua, and that we have been blessed with every spiritual blessing! So  to respond in love and obedience must make God so happy!!

3.      Obey! Walking in the spirit..
There are many who believe in God yet we might have  trouble obeying. My desire is to obey Him.. To remember to seek First His Kingdom and to get to know His voice and then obey..In the Holy Scriptures, God says to us, "If you love me, you will keep my commandments." Genuine love for God is demonstrated in obedience to God.
I will just add  this.. As it says in Ephesians..  
"God, who is rich in mercy, because of
His great love with which He loved us... raised us up together,
and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus."
I think that the  difference between those who overcome and those who do not overcome is a difference in our own PERCEIVED position. We all ought to perceive that in Christ we are seated in the heavenly places. I think that it's difficult to  overcome without this perception, this seeing, this revelation. If our perception is earthly, we will remain earthly. If our perception is heavenly, we will overcome.

Love Mary xxx

Friday, June 3, 2011



28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28-30

The Amplified version says, “28 Come unto Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.]

29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls.

30 For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good – not harsh, hard, sharp or pressing, but comfortable gracious and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.” 

I believe this is an invitation to each one of us who are weary, fatigued, heavy-laden and overburdened – because we have been working hard, toiling, and laboring in our own strength – to come to Him. He offers rest and a solution. Not only from  physical labor, but also about mental, emotional and spiritual labor.

There are some burdens that we were not designed to bear. We were not designed to bear the burden of sin and everything else that hell has to offer. We were designed, by the Father, to live in His presence and to draw our life from Him and to be sustained by Him, not to be lone rangers – struggling and limping along under the weight of our heavy burdens.

There is no help, no salvation, no relief from our burdens in anything that is in our wisdom, strength or ability – nothing we can do ourselves can come close to what the Father does for us if we will humble ourselves to receive from His hand all that He has already provided for us.

The term heavy-laden means to be loaded up like a pack animal, or in a figurative sense, to be overburdened with ceremony or spiritual anxiety. That is what religion does. It loads you up with burdens, and yet offers no solutions, no way out and no relief. No wonder religion makes some people miserable and grumpy and others just run away.

Unfortunately, they run away from God as well. The meaning of religion, in the dictionary, has to do with a belief in and a commitment to something or someone. It also means that a person is bound to the something or someone. Now commitment to God and being bound to Him is not a bad thing, but the problem is that most people are bound to a set of rules and regulations, most of which were instituted by man, not God!

God is not religious! Yeshua, Jesus was the most anti-religious person who walked this earth!! Yes, that’s right! He hates religion with a passion. Jesus, Who speaks for the Father, tells us what He thought of religion and tradition.

In Matthew 15:1-9, the Pharisees asked Jesus why His disciples broke the tradition of the elders by not ceremonially washing their hands before they eat! But Jesus rebuked the Pharisees for breaking the command of God for the sake of their tradition and called them hypocrites because they honored God with their lips, but their hearts are far from Him. He told them that they worshipped God in vain because their teachings were nothing more than rules taught by men.

If we want the blessing of God on our lives, we must be bound by and to the commands of God, but not the traditions that are set in place by man. We can pray to our Father to burn every bit of religion and tradition out of us, asking Him to  be filled with love and devotion to Him  and to His Word alone.”
Those who do not practice what they preach and who put unfair religious burdens on others – burdens that they themselves are unwilling to bear – anger the Lord (Matthew 23:1-4).

We should not lay any burden on someone other that what God requires and what we ourselves are willing to do.

The yoke is a wooden frame or bar with loops or bows at either end, fitted around the necks of a pair of oxen, etc. for harnessing them together. It represents a coupling – something that binds, unites, or connects, such as the marriage relationship. People use the term “the yoke of matrimony.” Figuratively, it has to do with servitude – a law or an obligation.

We are yoked to the Lord, but it is neither a hard or unpleasant yoke. A burden is, literally, freight or, figuratively, a task or service. It should not be difficult for us to serve God – if we do it right! It should be a joy and a pleasure. If you are serving God and you are not having the time of your life, then you better check out what you are doing and believing, because according to Jesus, our yoke should be easy and our burden should be light! Cast your cares on Him today. Stop trying to work for your salvation and stop trying to please God in your own strength or ability. Stop! And receive His grace and His mercy, which will refresh your souls!

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

144 000!! This is so COOL!!

It's been so .. awesome finding God's heart in this Book!!

The Prophetic Promises in Deuteronomy 4
I thought Moses’ exhortation in Deuteronomy 4, verses 23 and following was very interesting because it lays out the history of Israel in advance.

In verse 23 he warns about worshipping false gods.  In verse 25 he tells them they will do it.  In verses 26 and 27 he tells them that they’ll be destroyed as a nation and scattered among the nations.
But verses 29 through 31 are a promise of restoration:
 29But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.

 30When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the LORD thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice;
 31(For the LORD thy God is a merciful God;) he will not forsake thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them.

First of all, for anyone that says the national people of Israel were not permanent in God’s plan and were merely a type of the Church – that the “Israel of God” has always been the Church – there are some big problems:  If that’s the case, then the “Church” must have fallen into idolatry and been scattered throughout the nations….And the Church must still be in idolatry because, “even in the latter days” turning to God will bring His mercy.  Hmmmm…  So much for Covenant Theology…. and pretty dangerous cause I believe thats  calling God a liar!!

That is not to say that homiletically we can’t apply a passage like this to ourselves, but it’s truly speaking of Israel and the covenant promises to the Jewish people.

As an aside, I recently read an article from Compass Bible Church that addressed the issue of the 144,000 in Revelation 7 and 14.  It was interesting because it pointed out the Haredi, the most orthodox of the orthodox Jews, not just in Israel, but worldwide, are excellent candidates for these that are sealed during the Tribulation.  In the article, Bill Perkins points out that the young un-married Haredi do not date, much less have sex; and there are apparently approximately 150,000 males of these between the ages of 18 and 35 worldwide – the only group of Jewish men who could fulfill the prophecy.  Bill proposes, “Imagine what they will be like when, post-Rapture, God suddenly opens their eyes to biblical truth and marks them for service. They already have a zeal for God’s Word, so when they understand the rest of the story of how their forefathers rejected Jesus their Messiah, they will become the most proficient and prolific evangelists the world has ever seen!”

Kind of interesting!

The “sealing”
Rev 7:2-8
2 And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the
seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four
angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea,
3 Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till
we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.
4 And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there
were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes
of the children of Israel. (KJV)
5 Of the tribe of Juda were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe
of Reuben were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Gad were
sealed twelve thousand.
6 Of the tribe of Aser were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe
of Nephthalim were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of
Manasses were sealed twelve thousand.
7 Of the tribe of Simeon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the
tribe of Levi were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Issachar
were sealed twelve thousand.
8 Of the tribe of Zabulon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the
tribe of Joseph were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of
Benjamin were sealed twelve thousand. (KJV)