The Fear of God

The Bible reveals that the beginning of wisdom and knowledge is the fear of God. But this phrase, “fear of God,” has become a bit of a misnomer. The word fear denotes afraid of or threatening. So many unbelievers, today, view acknowledging a higher power is a threat to their freedom. As a result, they live in darkness with the shades drawn, blinded to the evil surrounding them. Christians understand the fear of God means standing in awesome respect of His power and majesty.

In Exodus 19:17-19, God wanted the Israelites to understand He was real and powerful. So, He asked Moses to lead them to the foot of Mount Sinai, and this event occurred…

“Then Moses led the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain.  Mount Sinai was covered with smoke, because the LORD descended on it in fire. The smoke billowed up from it like smoke from a furnace, the whole mountain trembled violently, and the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder. Then Moses spoke and the voice of God answered him.”

If we read the scriptures just before Exodus’ verse 17, we discover the Israelites knew several days in advance they would experience God. Most of the people laughed it off and thought Moses was a joke. But as predicted, God terrified them when they witnessed His presence on Mount Sinai. The Lord speaks of fearing Him in the Bible to stop sinning, not because He is a cruel god. He wants us to understand we should run to Him when our enemies approach us.

Image attribute by Sweet Publishing/FreeBibleImages.org

Moving ahead thousands of years later, what attitudes have changed today about God since Mount Sinai? Did mankind learn anything from the Israelites? My opinion is the world’s lack of faith has steeply declined, and the fear of God is nonexistent. People are unbalanced in their understanding of the Lord. They’re naïve, or perhaps uneducated, so they follow the weakest link on earth – Satan.

God is sending many signals to the world today of His power – pandemics, earthquakes, and other catastrophes. Still, many continue to ignore His signs. Just as the Israelites, they, too, will cower in fear when He returns and it will be too late.

Mentioned 365 times in the Bible, one would say the fear of God proves a point: it is time to adhere to God’s commands and not your own decisions. Take delight in fearing the Lord so you can walk in obedience and have the joy of a clean heart. It builds confidence for the judgment day, arriving soon. Fear of discipline helps us not to make mistakes. As we obey Christ, we remain in His love, and His joy will be forever in us.

The fear of God, and respecting His almighty presence, will build your eternal salvation. God bless you!

“They shall be My people, and I will be their God; then I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me forever, for the good of them and their children after them. And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from doing them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts so that they will not depart from Me.”  Jeremiah 32:38-40

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Send in the Doves

I took a reprieve from yard manicuring and sipped on a glass of tea. Without warning, three doves flew down to join me and fed on the seed my love scattered about the ground the previous day. They were only a few feet from my chair. Amazed and with exuberance, I surmised there must be a message in their trusting action. Am I being watched, I wondered? Is my every move being noted and written down for judgment day?

In scriptures, the dove is often used to represent aspects of God’s spirit, instructing our lives. It is a symbol of peace, but it held much more significance, for it affirmed Jesus as the Messiah. As John baptized Jesus, the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus in bodily form like a dove – the anointing of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, other heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; Matthew 3:16

Also, Noah experienced a connection with these birds. Following the Flood, he sent out a dove. It flew out over the sea but then returned to the ark. Noah waited a week before he left it go again. This time…

“…the dove came back to him in the evening, and behold, in her mouth was a freshly plucked olive leaf. So Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth.” Genesis 8:11

The third time Noah sent out a dove, it did not return, revealing the dove had found a new home on the land of the earth. The message here? God had made peace with the earth and mankind.

Image courtesy of FreeBibleImages.org

The Lord held doves in greatness. One biblical event describes Jesus angrily driving out all the merchants from the Temple, including “those who sold doves” to worshipers (John 2:16). The happiest of birds, it identifies and represents divinity and purity, as Jesus acknowledged by His anger.

So, do you think God sends in the doves to confirm our faithfulness or as a subliminal sign He is near? It’s easy to comprehend because, after all,  signs from God are clear as the day is long.

I want to share a personal event in my life. I married my wife on a beach in Destin, Florida. Standing on a platform next to the tall grasses and sand dunes, we recited our sacred vows. At the exact moment the Justice of Peace declared us man and wife, three doves flew out of the grass and over our heads. We will never forget it!

At first, we believed it was our deceased parents showing their approval, but now we view it differently – it was the Lord! To this day, His abundant blessings affect our life.

So, Lord, send in the doves! I built my sanctuary in honor of You. It gives me the strength for all things of which I can do to serve You better. I keep one eye on my blessings and the other on Your arrival. Standing like a soldier, I shall remain in prayer and feeding the doves You sent to watch over me this morning.

I love the days I can share Christ with all my readers. So many seeks the Lord, but He joins me in my daily thoughts. Call on our Lord, and He will send doves your way if you just have faith and pray.  What a merciful Father, don’t you agree?

Send in the doves, Lord, and baptize us with powerful wings and life ever after.

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God’s Glorious Creation

Women are God’s glorious creation who fit perfectly into His grand plan. She expands His temple by giving birth and training her family to live adult, productive lives. How incredibly valuable mothers are to the Lord! But this nurturing reality didn’t exist for women in biblical times.

When God created Adam and Eve, he gave them equal reign of the earth. But as the forbidden fruit was eaten, so too, was the woman’s rights to help dominate the land. As the Judaism religion developed, they overplayed this scene – women had no rights. Their primary purpose in life was to give birth, raise children in the Jewish faith, and attend to all the needs within the home and for her husband. She was never to be seen outside socializing with others, nor within the temple walls.

However, under Mosaic Law, Israeli women enjoyed an honorable status, and men recognized their rights. Though husbands were head of the household, the wife could freely express her religion and work a job.

So, who made the world change their view of women? Jesus loved the female genus, and He highly respected them. He healed their ailments, allowed them to travel with Him, and made disciples of a few. To express their importance to Jesus, He even chose a woman to bear witness to his resurrection (Mary Magdalene).

Proverbs 31: 25-30 expresses God’s deep love for mothers:

God also gave guidelines to husbands and children:

“Honor your marriage; keep it pure by remaining true to your wife in every way.” Hebrews 13:4

“Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect…” 1 Peter 3:7

“My son, keep your father’s commandment, and forsake not your mother’s teaching.” Proverbs 6:20

Mothers mold their offspring with love and integrity. In moments of illness, strife, or despair, their children remain foremost in their thoughts. They adorn their families with our lasting memories. Mothers, the Lord chose YOU to rear His creations and to love them as you love His Word. You are truly a gift.

To all the mothers who grow God’s kingdom, may you have a blessed and Happy Mother’s Day! Know you are so special and loved!

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A Day of Prayer

Today is the National Day of Prayer. The United States Congress asks people “to turn to God in prayer and meditation.” Though praying should be an everyday occurrence in our homes, on this day, many faiths will take part in the annual event. Rev. Billy Graham initiated this day in 1952, so please join me in prayer.

Dear Lord,

Our Father in Heaven, we come together in humility, asking you to bring salvation to all those who are in prayer today.

Please guide our clergy, missionaries, and others blessed to spread Your Word. Comfort the souls with broken spirits and cast out the germs that try to infiltrate their hearts. Many walk our land with little or no faith, and they desperately need led to Your spiritual being before leaving this life.

Lord, lead us to the still waters and green ferns during this tumultuous time of upheavals around the world. We pray for the safety, and immeasurable responsibilities of our leader, President Donald Trump. Father, please endow him with Your wisdom and comforting arms. Speak to all the members of our congress and other political positions. Guide them to make better decisions based on the country’s needs and not their own. Help America to once again come together in unity.

Many families have suffered job losses and deaths because of COVID-19. Lord bless them with Your peace and reassure their souls. Keep us healthy and shield us from harm, Lord.

We pray, Father, for the churches in America to unify under Jesus Christ’s name. Help us see all religions in the cross’s light. We pray to be more humble, gentle, and patient with one another. Bless us, Lord, with the unity of the Holy Spirit through the bond of peace.

Lord, please be our shepherd! Jesus Christ is the Only Savior, and our only hope in this world.

Amen

Strength of Faith

Shall I send you a card with best regards, or should I pray for Christ to defeat your battles in life? This world is our enemy, but God warns us not to cecum to the evil spirits lurking at every threshold. The Bible tells us God’s eternal power is the only strength to ward off those who offend us. Fighting battles on different fronts allow us the privilege of knowing Jesus Christ is our strength of faith.

During insurmountable battlefronts, Jesus protects us by being our shelter and protector. Psalm 91:4 tells us, “Under His wings, shall you trust and find refuge.” No matter the circumstances, He makes us inaccessible to the enemy. Many people walk unharmed through all kinds of dangerous situations today. Here are some biblical examples, too:

  • Paul, the Apostle, was brutally beaten and jailed, yet he could walk fifteen thousand miles to spread the word of Christ.
  • Daniel survived the lion’s den by his strength of faith in God.
  • When Moses was born, his mother set him afloat down the Nile river to stop the Pharaoh from killing him. God protected his life because He had higher plans for the infant.
  • God saved Noah and the ark from the greatest flood on earth. Noah’s strength of faith was rewarded with many future generations.

Often, I’ve struggled in a bitter war as enemies tried to impede my ability to move forward in life. The almighty Lord came to my rescue every time! Believers are temples of the living God. He goes everywhere we go when we are filled with His strength of faith. Your shield must be the Word of God – this is your part to receive His protection.

Ask God to direct your path each day, and in all circumstances, not just in the bad times. Let the joy of the Lord be your power of faith, for the only way to win life’s wars is by the strength of Jesus. Trample down the gates of evil and watch God take over the battle. His power is higher than any man who walks amongst us!

Let us pray –

Dear Father, I pray You will save me by Your precious grace so I may have everlasting life with You. Give me the fortitude to conquer the evil of everyone who seeks to harm me. I pray Your strength will be my fortress. Let me walk in Your footprints before me, so as not to falter or be misled into devilish corners. Bless me with a greater strength of faith, Your armor, so I am not held captive by the enemy. Thank you, Lord, for the battles Your awesome power has seen me through in life. Let my love in You now be my strength in faith and my forever fortress. Amen.



Our Faith is Being Tested

The brisk wind stirs my mind, and I ponder our current events. Shelves are empty in the stores, and a virus plagues us. Quarantined from life, it seems it’s against our nature not to roam freely with our adventuresome instincts. My excitement usually comes in the early light, but boredom sets in now as it rains throughout the day.

Are today’s trials set in place by God’s admission or schemed by Satan? Everyone has their hands tied, and the world has come to a screeching halt. No God in heaven would wish this on His chosen people… or would He? Perhaps He is telling us to take a stand. Our faith is being tested!

In the biblical scriptures of Matthew 24:6-8, Jesus speaks of the End Times events as “birth pains.” Besides food shortages and economic collapse, He also spoke of viruses and locust infestations. Throughout the Bible, God sent plagues and pestilence to deal with his own people.

Medical science has proven the coronavirus natural host is bats, and the Chinese consume them in the form of soup. Did you know the Bible labels bats as forbidden meat? China detests Christianity and persecutes believers in their country. It is undoubtedly interesting COVID-19 figures today show that over 21 million Chinese have died from this virus. Is this a message from God? It is probable He is putting you on alert.

You may ask why a loving God would allow the death of His children from a pandemic. This is a wake-up call for those who refuse to repent their sins or surrender to Christ as their Lord and Savior. After all, history repeats itself.

All the wealth and knowledge of mankind will not stop our Lord’s intentions. Are you concerned for your safety? Staying home helps… or does it? Yes, it can UNLESS it is God’s will for this to happen. I cannot affirm the coronavirus positively is such a plague, but be aware of the signs. What I write for you today may shed light on the secrets of the future.

The Lord is watching and preparing our new home. Life, at this moment, mirrors biblical prophecy, and our faith is being tested. Trying to make sense of an incomparable condition is better left to those chosen scholars of God.

Should you fear the ultimatum, or should you remain faithful? This disease is a test of our personal faith in Jesus Christ. Let Him be your refuge for peace and comfort. It is so essential in these times you pray for His protection, study the Bible, and ask for healing.

“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14

A final thought –  a man recently delivered some lumber to my home, and he had a profound point of view on faith that I need to share with you. He said, “You can’t line dance to gospel music.” Thanks, Ira! Great perspective! Stay in faith, everyone… you’re being tested!


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The Darkness of Death and The Light of Life at Easter [Video]

Easter, CCP Coronavirus, Ressurection of JesusSunday, April 12, 2020, is the annual celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead within most of Christendom. It is safe to say that this Easter season is unlike any other in almost everyone’s lifetime around the world because of the global Chinese Communist Party, or CCP, Coronavirus pandemic.

However, this pandemic is also another example of the reality of death in our world. And Easter, or Resurrection Day,  shouts out the power of God to overcome death with life.

Though a virus rages across the planet and the specter of death seems to lurk around every corner in many places, the Resurrection still remains as the ultimate demonstration of God’s power and providence for us. The darkness may threaten to overwhelm us for a time, but the Life and Light of the Risen Christ will overcome the darkness of death in the end.

The Darkness of Death Surrounds Us

Crucifixion, Resurrection, JesusThe CCP Coronavirus pandemic has drawn renewed attention to the reality of physical death all around the globe. All over the world, there are people worried about exposure to the virus and the possible deaths of themselves and their loved ones.

However, worse than the presence of death among us is the fear of death that is taking hold of so many people and motivating some in authority to act as if human rights do not exist. The Leftmedia has decided to join in the fearful chorus and dampen any glimmer of hope such as the successes of certain treatments, i.e. hydroxychloroquine, the recent reduction in the predictions of deaths from the CCP Coronavirus, and the reduction in hospitalization rates in New York state and elsewhere.

Fear seems to be driving some government officials to act out delusions of power and attempt to squash constitutionally guaranteed individual rights, some of which were mentioned in the previous article. Perhaps the most egregious statement to date was made by the Hamilton County, Ohio prosecutor Joe Deiters a few days ago.

Michael Knowles in his video broadcast of April 8, 2020, quotes several outrageous statements made by this demagogue including the following,

 If I was the Governor, I would tell these churches [that wish to hold services within the CDC guidelines] the first attendees at your church is going to be the National Guard because we are stopping this right away…

It is evident that the enemies of Christ are pressing forward with an all-out assault against faithful believers who wish to gather and corporately worship, honor, and call upon God for hope and courage amidst the viral fear. However, those enemies, whether human or demonic, will find their efforts will fail as they did 2,000 years ago outside of Jerusalem at the empty tomb of Christ.

The Light of Life Overcomes the Darkness of Death

Crucifixion, Resurrection of ChristThe current pandemic has engulfed the world with its ominous shadow and the serious menace of death it carries. Yet it pales in comparison to the literal darkness that visited the planet upon the death of Jesus on the cross.

Now from the sixth hour there was darkness all over the land, until the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Matthew 27:45-46 [ESV]

That darkness signified the gathering of all the sin of the human race throughout all of our existence and having all that malice imprinted upon the pure soul of Jesus. Those three hours were the worst part of the tortures our Lord underwent at His crucifixion culminating in the greatest pain of all, the moment the Father turned away from His Son.

Abandonment by His Father was the final price Jesus paid for our sin on our behalf! Jesus’ cries to His Father were followed by a final call to God,

Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this, he breathed his last. Luke 23:46 [ESV]

The death of the Incarnate Son of God was the aftermath of darkness that covered all the world physically and spiritually and was the most powerful blow the demonic forces could strike. Yet it was not nearly enough to prevail against the power of God who raised Jesus from the dead and broke the stranglehold of sin, death and, despair.

Resurrection, Easter, JesusThat same Divine power is much more than a match for the death stalking the land today. There is no better time to come to the LORD seeking His love and grace than now at this very moment and lift the burden of sin from our hearts.

Therefore, let us take heart in the knowledge that Jesus has risen and alive forever and His light and life can and will extinguish the darkness of sin and evil no matter its manifestation or seeming advance in the world even today!

Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12 [ESV]

D.T. Osborn

Sources: The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, Crossway Bibles, 2001

Featured and Top Image courtesy of Wayne S. Grazio’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image 1 courtesy of matthias lueger’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image 2 courtesy of PhotoNacho. Carpe Diem’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image 3 courtesy of Martin LaBar’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License

All other sources linked or cited in the text

Who Attempted to Stop Easter?

Easter is the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection. He was part of God’s prophecy to send a Son to live a sinless life and to suffer, die, and be raised again. How else could God send the message He is sovereign over our land? Because there is no other way to enter the Kingdom of God except through His Son (John 6:44), Jesus’ mission was to save believers from God’s condemnation.

Many biblical names hated and loved Jesus while He walked the earth. Had man believed in God’s ultimate plan for Jesus, these people would have realized the attempts to stop His crucifixion and/or life were futile. Five men failed God’s test.

So, who attempted to stop Easter?

SATAN

Photo by Alessio Zaccaria on Unsplash.com

Satan and Jesus were always brutal enemies. Their most well-known confrontation was Satan’s visit while Jesus fasted in the Judaean Desert for forty nights and days. Satan tempted Him to create bread out of stones to relieve his own hunger, and leap from a pinnacle and rely on angels to break his fall. But when Satan asked Jesus to kneel before him in return for all the kingdoms of the world, Jesus became furious.

“Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” (Matthew 4:10)

Can you imagine Satan’s fury? If he were successful in tempting Jesus, there would be no Easter. Luke 22 claims Satan was most likely at the crucifixion as he was spotted in the area days before this historical event. He probably smirked with happiness, but little did he know…

King Herod

Image by James Tissot Collection (Brooklyn Museum)/FreeBibleImages.org

King Herod held the throne during Jesus’s time of birth. Furious to learn there was a Messiah who would be more loved than himself, he tried to find the pregnant woman. However, his plan backfired when the three Wisemen never returned with Herod’s information. He ordered all boys, in the age range of Jesus, to be executed. An angel warned Joseph and Mary to go to Egypt for safety as it was not part of the Roman territory.

King Herod was unsuccessful in finding our baby Savior. He died, instead, attempting to stop Easter because he was not part of God’s grand plan.

THE SANHEDRIN

Image copyright by LUMO Project (Big Book Media)/FreeBibleImages.org

The chief priests, the Sanhedrin, were the Jewish council who hated Jesus. They wanted to kill him, so they looked for false evidence, such as blasphemy. Though it may appear they were fruitful in finally murdering Jesus, God’s plan overpowered their contempt. The empty tomb and Jesus’ resurrection made news. The Sanhedrin’s attempt to stop Easter failed too.

PONTIUS PILATE

Image by michaelwelply.com/Pinterest

Pontius Pilate was the judge who would not give the eventual decision on Jesus’ death. Consciously, Pilate knew Jesus was innocent, but the uproar of the people shouting, “Crucify him!” intimidated his decision. High-ranking Jewish officials blackmailed him to kill Jesus. Finally, he gave the ultimate choice to the people.

If Pilate ordered Jesus dead, we would always know him as the man who stopped Easter. But our powerful God had a better way to save the world.

SIMON PETER

Image by gerhardy.id.au/Pinterest

Simon Peter was one of Jesus’ closest friends. In the Bible, Jesus often referred to him as Peter. We know his famous story as the fisherman who couldn’t catch his daily supply of fish… that is until Jesus arrived on the scene. He convinced Simon to return to his boat and drop his nets overboard. Soon  the nets overflowed with fish. Simon was a faithful follower of Jesus’ ministry, and later became an apostle.

When Simon was alerted that Jesus was arrested, he headed for Jerusalem. At the unmerciful sight of our Lord’s whipped and beaten body, he drew his sword in anger. He cut off the ear of the high priest’s servant before Jesus stopped him (John 18:10-11).

Jesus said to Simon, “Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels? But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?”

Simon Peter felt as if he failed to save his friend’s life. How could God allow this to happen if Jesus was really who He pronounced Himself to be – the Son of God? He, too, doubted his friend’s identity until God resurrected Jesus. The Lord’s plan for mankind was greater than Simon’s attempt to stop Easter.

There lies a common theme in this morning’s Easter message: God is the ultimate ruler of our life. He sent His son into the world to give us eternal salvation, but what we do with this gift is our decision.

Today, as we reflect on our lives, we beseech God to intervene with the world’s problems. May He save us from a scenario we didn’t invite into our life. Some are trying to stop us from celebrating Easter. Is this a life experience and are we part of God’s ultimate plans? You bet! The evildoers won’t or can’t stop Easter. We may not enjoy egg hunts after Easter service, but we will exult our Lord Jesus, in the name of our heavenly Father, God.

On this Easter Sunday, we are challenged – is Satan behind the mass hysteria again? You bet! How else could a virus travel so fast around the world? It’s entered places where people do not visit often. Only Satan can try to stop Easter. I, for one, won’t let him do it!

God bless all our family, friends, and subscribers! Have a blessed, healthy, and peaceful Easter.


Was It a Good Friday?

A quote was written about 539 B.C.,  just before King Solomon’s death and after God brought the Jews back from exile. Life was not always fair… it wasn’t then, and it isn’t now:

“I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.” Ecclesiastes 9:11

As far back as time prevails, religious and political persecution were prevalent. But today, we mark the holiest of days in biblical history. Jesus died for us on a Friday, and He forgave our sins so we may live as pure as possible.

In the present day’s turmoil of political unrest, the Book of Ecclesiastes remains a mirror image. Jesus’ message was to proclaim the kingdom of God, a political offense in biblical days. He spoke of what it will be like when God is the ruler of the world, and this created a conflict with Roman authorities. Does this sound familiar? Much of social media has limited or shutdown religious postings. Our missionaries and religious leaders are murdered around the world for proclaiming the kingdom of God.

But Jesus’ issue with the Roman Empire was the sacrilegious offenses occurring within the temple of Jerusalem. It had become the NY Stock Exchange of its day, and worse yet, the high priests were getting a cut of all the money. These priests became wealthy from international trade. Jesus was appalled because the temple was to be a house of prayer – not corruption. To avoid a massive upheaval, the people arrested Him at night. And yes, it was the Jewish citizen’s decision to murder Jesus, not the government. If they killed Him and His true identity truly was the Messiah, the government would reap serious consequences. It was better to let the people decide our Lord’s fate.

Copyright by LUMO Project (Big Book Media)/ FreeBibleImages.org

As the crowds in Jerusalem shuffled to and fro, Jesus quietly displayed his condemnation against the ungodly government power and corrupt system. He rode a donkey into their town. Believers who knew of Him waved palms at His entrance. Others gasped in disbelief at “the king of Jew’s” entrance. He was sadly aware of His fate.

Jesus’ crucifixion was not just hanging on a cross, it was torture – a violent death. They whipped Him beyond sight with an iron ring that had six or seven leather straps. It had bone or metal attached to the ends to rip the flesh away, and then He was made to carry His own heavy cross.

Copyright by LUMO Project (Big Book Media)/ FreeBibleImages.org

Under normal circumstances, hanging upside-down was a quick death, but that was too easy for the punishment of Jesus. The thick nails piercing the palms of His hands and feet were excruciating and led to the dropping of His body pressure. Yet, He stayed alive for six hours on the cross, suffering for you and me. Jesus Christ died for our sins so we could live as pure a life as possible on earth.

Oh, the political Jews and pagans thought they won the war!

On Sunday morning, let us sing His praises and commemorate the reign of this holy man who sacrificed His life for us. With corruption running rampant in biblical days, there was only one way God could prove his identity – allow His Son to mingle with disbelievers three days later. They would surely understand our Father, God, not mankind, rules this world! So, for the next forty days after Jesus’ resurrection, He preached the mighty awesome power of His Father in heaven.

Image attribution Brooklyn Museum/FreeBibleImages.org

I would like you to test your faith by looking in the mirror on this day. Was it a Good Friday? What have you learned? Would you surrender your life, as Jesus did for you, by hanging on a cross? Are you able to discuss with others what Christianity means to you? Can you evangelize, or do you fear for your life? Do you study the Bible regularly? If you responded “yes” to all of these questions, your deep faith will be honored on earth and in heaven. As for those wavering on a “yes” answer, it is time to analyze your faith and love for Jesus Christ. He will wait for you….

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Waiting on His Return

We are familiar with the details of Christ’s fanfare when He returns amidst trumpets sounding across the land. The clouds will break open, and God’s light will shine as He returns. We can visualize the dead rising first as He calls us home. But, what if…

What if you sat on your porch and a man with a long, white robe and long, flowing hair approached you? Would you know instantly everything you learned and read was correct about Jesus? What if He came to your steps and said, “Are you ready?”

Would you think… is my bed made? Am I dressed appropriately? Is my home in order and bills paid? Is the laundry piled high by the bathroom sink? Is your house tidy or in complete disarray, just like your life? Would you tell Jesus, “let me get my wallet and cellphone?”

I wonder how many people will have the strength to follow Him? I’m sure some who claim to be of great faith, will fall flat on their face, kneel in forgiveness, and try to repent of their sins. But, it will be too late for those actions are to happen in this life. When Christ arrives for you, there will not be another chance or a rain check. Some will answer the calling, and some will miss the opportunity.

It will be a sad situation, especially when it involves those closest to us. For example, good Christians raise their children in the House of the Lord. But, as those generations turn into adults, they seek other means of comfort. Such vices include the drug scene, alcohol, sexual promiscuity, atheism, and crime. If God were to return today, we would never see our children again. It is taught that if we do everything possible to train our kids to have a strong spiritual nature, they will eventually return to their roots. Children are a gift from God, and He demands parents to raise them according to His laws. Teach them well so they, too, will walk from the porch with the Lord.

Our Father has given us everything in life, yet asked nothing in return except to honor Him. So, I wonder about the smug hypocrites who use the church to hide from their sin and faults. Will their unconscionable mind realize the wrongness of their logic? God is just and kind, but the Bible reveals hypocrites will also be severely judged at the end of time:

The condition of your home, or how well you are dressed will be gone forever when the Lord arrives at the sound of a trumpet. His appearance will be shocking and scary for those less prepared to face Him. I contemplate the unfolding events of our stand before His throne. If we bow and offer excuses for our sin, will God raise His right hand and say, “NO MORE! Begone!” Or will He whip out His “Book of Life” and start reciting all of our mistakes? The Bible reveals the answer:

I don’t have a clue if Christ will come through the clouds or arrive on your doorstep, but I can only emphasize this – don’t wait to prepare for His second coming! Start today by asking forgiveness of your sins, and never return to those wicked ways. Serve your fellowman in His holy name. Turn away from evil, and praise His name. Guide yourself and family to the heavens above so you all may be richly rewarded at the end of time. Every day you wait, is one less day you have to get things right before God.

As for me… I’m prepared and waiting on His return, covered in the blood of Christ.



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