Saturday, December 22, 2012

THE RIGHT KINDLING


You cannot start a fire without kindling of some kind, something that will spark a flame.

Since we are still here and the earth hasn’t been destroyed and civilization hasn’t ended – not yet anyway – the Christian call to carry out The Great Commission continues.  We are to go into all the world and be witnesses for Christ.  I am certain we are not the only ones finding this more difficult in these “last days”.   The things that motivate people have changed, apparently drastically, and so our task becomes FINDING THE RIGHT KINDLING TO SPARK THE FIRE in each individual. 

A simple message of “repent of sin and receive forgiveness” no longer resonates in the hearts of those who hear it, for they have little to no concept of sin.  Sin has been validated as normal, common and everyday in the society we currently live in.  In fact, it has been legalized by misguided (though I’d like to believe well meaning) judges in the United States attempting to discern the Constitution devoid  of any Biblical moral guidance for the general citizenry of the country.  Murder becomes a gentle “choice”, reprobate sexual perversion is simply an “orientation”.  To say otherwise is HATE SPEECH.   How clever of our adversary satan to compromise the very message of Gods great LOVE by causing the world to declare it hate. 

To reach the heart of each person requires we carefully work our way through layer upon layer of
  • political correctness
  • deeply embedded false teaching
  •  acceptable social thinking
  • AND the inherent  sin nature of mankind! 
Many have tried to do this by mimicking the ways of the world in order to appeal to a wider audience.  Our message has become watered down in its insistence of being “seeker friendly” or has become completely compromised in favor of filling seats in our church services.   In my humble opinion this has failed and falls FAR SHORT of fulfilling our mission to Preach the Truth, as well as failing to Glorify God as Holy and Righteous.  We find ourselves DEFENDING God as good.   God does not need or desire our pitiful attempts at defending Him!   

Jesus warned against and warned of all that we currently see occurring.  
He prophesied in Matthew 24: 8-13 (KJV)

ALL THESE ARE THE BEGINNING OF SORROWS.   
THEN SHALL THEY DELIVER YOU UP TO BE AFFLICTED AND SHALL KILL YOU;  AND YOU SHALL BE HATED OF ALL NATIONS FOR MY NAME’S SAKE.    
AND THEN SHALL MANY BE OFFENDED AND SHALL BETRAY ONE ANOTHER AND SHALL HATE ONE ANOTHER.    
AND MANY FALSE PROPHETS SHALL RISE AND SHALL DECEIVE MANY.     
AND BECAUSE INIQUITY SHALL ABOUND THE LOVE OF MANY SHALL WAX COLD.  
BUT HE THAT SHALL ENDURE UNTO THE END THE SAME SHALL BE SAVED.

TRUTH is the ONLY kindling that will start the HOLY SPIRIT fire burning in a heart!

The fire of the Holy Spirit cleanses and refines us, but until it’s lit and burning brightly…

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Planting, Watering and HARVESTING!

There just isn't any other feeling quite like the JOY that comes from assisting someone out of darkness and into the Kingdom of the Living God!  That's really all we do you know, assist others.

It is GOD Who calls all people to His Kingdom.  It is His goodness that draws them to Him.  It is His Holy Spirit that anoints them to hear.

Many plant seeds of truth and many more water and nurture those seeds, blessing them with the warmth of the SON and the food of His truth until one day, God graciously allows one of His Ambassadors the awesome privilege and honor of escorting one across the border - from dead in trespasses and sins to ALIVE ETERNALLY in Christ Jesus the Lord!  And what a responsibility - reaping the Harvest of Souls for the glory of God the Creator and Savior!

We are thanking God the Father for just such a "border crossing" privilege, as Kim made confession of Christ as Savior, asked and received forgiveness of sin. 

Many planted truth seeds, many watered and nurtured.  How WONDERFUL it is when the BODY OF CHRIST works together!

MERRY CHRISTMAS indeed!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Tragic Child Massacre!

Like everyone else, I am horrified, sickened and sad beyond words at the senseless, dreadful and tragic loss of human life - especially one's so young!  My heart aches in pain, not only for those beautiful babies from Newtown, CT, but for those who haven't even been allowed to draw a single breath on this earth, because the GOVERNMENT of the United States of America has declared it will NOT PROSECUTE any man or woman who MURDERS an innocent baby as long as it has not drawn a breath outside the womb!

The majority of people would like to separate these two events, and pretend they are not the same thing.  Most will avoid saying the obvious because it isn't politically correct and acceptable.

Since the innocent children died in Newtown, how many MORE innocent have been brutally torn from the wombs of their mothers into just as painful, just as horrible and just as tragic DEATH?

We talk talk talk about CHOICE - but we are afraid to declare the TRUTH.  CHOICE isn't about whether a child conceived has the right to be born and live a life.  CHOICE is made BEFORE action is taken that could lead to conception.  THAT is when a woman has ONLY HER OWN BODY to make choices about.  After conception, her body houses another - a separate body that belongs to a different human being - NOT HER. 

Evil flourishes when people will not stand and speak TRUTH.  Let that NOT be our crime here at Turn the Tide Ministries.  We will stand, we will speak and we will not be silent for political correctness or social acceptance or any other reason.

We have all sinned and come short of the glory of God.  He created us.  He loves us.  Everyone has the right to REJECT that truth precisely because He gave us freewill to do so.  BUT THAT DOESN'T CHANGE THE TRUTH OR ALTER IT ANY WAY! 

Those who have made that terrible choice to end the life of a child live with a knot in their hearts that will never cease.  Those who have repented of sin - this and any and every other sin - and have asked the forgiveness of God our Father and Creator - have received it and sin is remembered NO MORE!

While we are mourning the 20 - don't forget the MILLIONS who deserved the same right to live.

I do not write because I have any moral high ground - I write precisely because I am a sinner who has been forgiven by a gracious God, though I did not deserve it - and for that reason I share the TRUTH of His forgiveness and love with others.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

PURPOSE: SAVED AND UNSAVED


 Purpose of Turn the Tide Ministries:

To preach the Gospel of Salvation through Jesus to the lost and wandering hopeless

To build the Body of Christ in Love while equipping the Saints for spiritual warfare

Matthew 28: 18 – 20

And Jesus came and spoke to them saying “All Authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.  Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded to you, and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

Mark 16: 15-18

And He said to them “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.  He who believes and is baptized will be saved but he who does not believe will be condemned.  And these signs will follow those who believe, in My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick and they will recover.”

Luke 24: 46-49

Then He said to them, “Thus it was written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.  And you are witnesses of these things.  Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.”

Acts 1: 8

“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

What we are supposed to do:

1.       Be filled with the Holy Spirit POWER

2.      Go into every place that the Spirit leads us

3.      Preach the message of the gospel; repentance and remission of sins

4.      Baptize people

5.      Teach the Word of God

6.      Cast out demons

7.      Speak with new tongues

8.      Trust God to protect us from serpents and poisons

9.      Lay hands on the sick and pray so they recover

Nine directives from our Lord; nine manifestations of the Holy Spirit our Helper:

ICorinthians 12: 8-11

1.       Word of Wisdom

2.      Word of knowledge

3.      Faith

4.      Gifts of healing

5.      Working of Miracles

6.      Prophecy

7.      Discerning of spirits

8.      Kinds of tongues

9.      Interpretation of tongues

Preaching the Gospel seems a simple enough dictate but accomplishing it has historically been anything BUT easy!  Preaching has taken many forms over the many generations since Jesus gave what we call “THE GREAT COMMISSION”.  The disciples obeyed Jesus and began with a simple message that caused the religious leaders of their day to run them out of town, jail them or even kill them! 

From the original design of the Tabernacle in the wilderness, to synagogues and to our modern churches, we who believe have continued the tradition of preaching the gospel. 

There are those who preach the Word of Truth  in the churches and at Revivals.  They preach on the airwaves, online and to great auditoriums filled with worshipping believers in the One True God.  They preach – even if sometimes it seems only to the choir - striving because of love of God in their hearts - to find new ways to present the gospel message of salvation so perhaps some will hear to the end they will DO what the message clearly tells us needs to be done.

There are those who are called, anointed and appointed to preach the Word of Truth as fresh revelation and amazing transforming power to those who have never heard, who have never understood and have never received as truth for their lives this same message.  We often separate these two functions, calling one “Pastor” and one “Evangelist”.  In truth, they are both the same; “Preachers” and “Prophets”, bringing forth a message from God to His children.

Over 40+ years I have attempted to follow and obey Jesus, (failing more times than I have room to write about!) both as the member of a church and as a Minister to the church.

There is such JOY!   JOY in my heart when I have the privilege of sharing the matchless and awe inducing truth of God’s Word, and of experiencing the Word brought forth from one who truly loves God, loves His people and allows the Holy Spirit to speak through them!  Whether exhorting and equipping Gods people in a weekly gathering of the saints (church) or calling the lost (those who have not accepted the atoning work of Christ done on the cross of crucifixion) to repentance, Gods Word always has deep and abiding effect on those who hear it.  As Paul the Apostle said, how shall they hear unless someone preach? 

In these perilous times, (and make no mistake, we are always in perilous times, we are constantly tempted to sin and turn our backs on God!  God specifically told us he would make the time of GREAT TRIBULATION short, as He knew we would perish otherwise!)  In these perilous times it isn’t money that is at stake.  It isn’t political power or moral values or social standing or church size or family values or the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman.  It isn’t even the doctrinal differences and minor difference of issues within or between denominations.  These are all important to us in the span of our lives on this earth, but not in the eternal scheme of things. 

What is truly in peril, what is being weighed and held in the balance what is really at stake for His Church is whether or not we are OBEDIENT TO HIS COMMANDS.  What is really at stake for those who have not received His truth is THEIR ETERNAL DESTINATION!

Every created human being birthed from their mother’s womb has an ETERNAL EXISTENCE.   The question is not “Do you have Eternal life?”  The question is: WHERE WILL YOU SPEND ETERNITY?

Jesus presented two choices.  A place of darkness where there is “gnashing of teeth” or a place of LIGHT PEACE AND JOY through Him in the Eternal Presence of God.  Believe or not as you choose.  Free will was given as much a gift as Salvation is a gift.  Receive the gift, receive the blessing that comes with it.  Reject the gift and the blessing is also rejected.

Church – YOU have been tasked by the Lord to “go into all the world and make disciples of all men.”  That charge, that commission has never been changed or altered.  I exhort and encourage you to answer this call and get involved to MAKE IT COUNT FOR CHRIST!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

NEVER VOID

As I was raising my children I found myself repeating to them numerous times and through many different circumstances these words; The only way you can lose is if you QUIT!
Those words sometimes feel like they are coming back to haunt me, especially when I am dealing with a seemingly impossible situation and it doesn't look like its going to go well, or at least not the way I think it should go.
And then God, in His infinite grace, lets me see a glimpse of what He is doing, always far greater than my thought or ability, and I'm so glad I take my own advice. NEVER QUIT! Gods word NEVER comes back void.  His word NEVER FAILS!

 A soul I was pretty much giving up on ever receiving the truth, God just opened a door to their heart.  NEVER QUIT.  YOU'LL NEVER LOSE BECAUSE GOD IS ON YOUR SIDE !