Outline: How to Lead People in the Baptism of the Holy Spirit

How to Lead People in the Baptism of the Holy Spirit

NOTE: Ministers, Christian workers, lay people please feel free to copy and use this outline to lead others

I. Scriptural Foundation

A. What is it? Imbuement of supernatural power for service (Luke 24:49).
Tongues is to build you up, and activate the other 8 gifts to minister to others.

B. Promised by: John the Baptist: Luke 3:16
Jesus: John 14:16, Acts 1:8, Mark 16:17
Peter: Acts 2:38, 39
God desires our spiritual worship John 4:23
The Holy Spirit is the only member of the Godhead resident on earth today
He came to reproduce the supernatural ministry of Jesus through believer

C. Received by Christians after salvation
1. Acts 2:4 Day of Pentecost
2. Acts 8:14-17 Samaria (what did Simon see?)
3. Acts 10:44-46 Cornelius’s house (before water baptism)
4. Acts 19:1-6 Ephesian disciples
5. John 14:17 World cannot receive (only believers)
6. Luke 11:13 Father will give to them that ask (guaranteed if He’s your Father), when you get saved you receive Jesus, this speaks of another experience when you ask your Father for the Holy Spirit.

D. What good are tongues?
1. Acts 10:45-46 Apostles evidence
2. 1st Corinthians 14:2 Edify (build up) yourself
3. Jude 1:20 Builds you up on faith, keeps you in the love of God
4. Romans 8:26 Makes intercession when we don’t know how to pray
5. 1st Corinthians 14:17 Gives thanks well
6. 1st Corinthians 12:10 Tongues + interpretation = prophecy, edifies, exhort, comfort
7. 1st Corinthians 14:14 Enables your spirit to pray
8. John 4:23 Enables you to worship God in the spirit (1st Corinthians 14:15)

E. We’re all exhorted to “pray in tongues”
1. Definition: 1st Corinthians 14:14 if I pray in unknown tongue my spirit prays
2. Ephesians 6:18 Put on the whole armor of God, praying always… in the spirit
3. Jude 1:20-21 Build up yourselves on your most holy faith praying in the Holy Ghost, keep yourselves in the love of God.

Summary: without tongues you…
Can’t be sure you have the Baptism in the Holy Spirit, no scriptural evidence.
No supernatural power for service.
Your spirit can’t pray (it is mute, dumb, no voice).
You don’t know how to pray in puzzling situations effectively.
Your worship, prayer and thanksgiving are limited to your mental realm only.
You can’t edify yourself, build up yourself on faith, or keep in the love of God.
You can’t worship God in the spirit as He desires.
You aren’t desiring spiritual gifts like scripture commands.
You are disobedient to the 2 commands to pray in the spirit.

II. How to Receive the Baptism in the Holy Spirit with Tongues

A. Understand the Holy Spirit won’t do it all for you, you have a part to play.
Notice the miracles of the Bible had man’s part and God’s part.

1. Old Testament examples:
Moses held out the rod – God divided the Red Sea
Namaan had to dip 7 times in the river Jordan, God healed his leprosy.
Elijah prepared sacrifice – God’s fire fell.

2. New Testament examples:
Jesus said “rise, take up your bed and walk.”
“stretch out your withered hand.”
“go wash in the pool of Siloam” and sight was restored.
Peter got out of the boat and then walked on the water.

B. God doesn’t want to override your free will or He’d just save and fill everybody.
The only way your free will can stay intact is if you cooperate with God.
1. You had to cooperate with God to get saved and follow Jesus.
2. We are to “stir up the gift” that is in us (2nd Timothy 1:6).
3. Tongues operate by a choice of your will (1st Corinthians 14:15)
4. You can’t guide a car till it starts rolling. You speak, God guides.

C. Your part is to form syllables that are not English and trust God to guide you after you start rolling. On the Day of Pentecost “they began” to speak…
1. Two kinds of people never speak in tongues:
a. Those who won’t open their mouth and step out in faith (expecting God to do it all).
b. Those who say “Praise God” etc in English, can’t speak 2 languages at the same time (must stop English to start in tongues).

D. Before you pray for someone get them to agree that they will do their part and form non-English syllables. Don’t pray until they understand and agree, loud enough to hear.

E. Explain to them not to expect great emotions (that’s up to God and individual’s temperament).
A gift of $1,000,000 would be just as valuable if it came in a brown envelope or with great fanfare. The value of the gift is in using it. Tongues will prove just as valuable to you whether it comes with emotion or very little emotion. The anointing will be greater at times of special need when the Spirit is moving stronger that at other times.

III. Prayer for the Infilling of the Holy Spirit

A. Have them repeat after you something like this:
1. Father, I acknowledge that Jesus is my Savior and Lord.
2. I renounce and ask forgiveness for dabbling in the occult.
3. I now ask You to fill me with Holy Spirit, according to Your Word, with my speaking in tongues.
4. I agree to step out and cooperate with You and do my part, trusting You.
5. I now thank You for it in advance, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

B. Pray in your language and encourage them to step out in tongues and going faster (speed helps get them out of the mental realm).
Reassure them and encourage them as they cooperate “that’s it, keep going…” etc.

Comment: Most people have no difficulty receiving the Baptism in the Holy Spirit with their prayer language if they are properly instructed. Difficult cases usually have not understood their part in stepping out, and have waited in vain for the Holy Spirit to do it all for them. Proper instruction is so important that this is a good rule to follow: If you have 20 minutes to spend getting someone baptized in the Holy Spirit, spend the first 15 minutes instructing them, and the last 5 minutes praying and that should be sufficient in most cases. Problems occur when most of the time is pent praying without proper instruction.

C. Understanding Past Misconceptions and Wrong Teachings

Background: The Holy Spirit fell with great power at Azusa Street in 1906. God was moving to get the Church back on the right track regarding the Holy Spirit and gifts so needed in the last days before Jesus’ return. Those early Pentecostals had very little teaching to help them understand what they had or what to do with it.

Sometimes they misunderstood and misinterpreted what they were experiencing and formulated unscriptural teachings based on their experiences, not the Word.

The Holy Spirit fell at first with such power and anointing that they taught some error, such as:

1. They taught others to tarry and seek till they got a great feeling.
a) The Bible never mentions tarrying for the Holy Spirit after the Day of Pentecost, or basing it on feelings. The other 3 accounts in the book of Acts they all received without tarrying and there was no mention of feelings.
b) The Holy Spirit arrived once for all, there is no need to tarry anymore.
c) If we took the command to tarry literally for today, we’d have to go to Jerusalem, because Jesus said, “Tarry here in Jerusalem.”

2. They taught you could never speak in tongues without a great feeling or anointing.
a) They overlooked the 2 commands to pray in tongues “always” as an act of your will like Paul said he did in 1st Corinthians 14:15.
b) They neglected to “stir up the gift” as in 2nd Timothy 1:6 and they practiced waiting for the Holy Spirit. They waited for the Holy Spirit to come and stir them up, which wasted much time. They lost much of the value of tongues, not realizing it was a spiritual prayer language to be used regularly.
c) The Bible teaches to base our spiritual walk on faith and obedience to God’s Word, not on changing emotional experiences..
d) If we based our salvation on feelings, we’d feel saved one day and lost the next. It would depend on our moods and our spiritual growth would be hindered.
e) Likewise, we can’t grow in the Spirit-filled life if based on feelings.

3. The true scriptural method for receiving the Baptism of the Holy Spirit has been proven out over time
a) We can lead believers to receive the Holy Spirit and cooperate with Him to speak in tongues immediately. God always does His part and no one walks away disappointed (if they’re born-again and a sincere seeker).
b) We encourage believers to pray in tongues daily and let feelings come or go. Just obey the Word in faith for the best possible results.

4. Many people have been wrongly instructed to go by feelings with the end result being they have never received a fully developed prayer language.
a) They only had faith to receive 4 or 5 syllables at first and they never progressed beyond that. They repeat the same syllables from memory at time of special feelings or anointing received. They missed the whole purpose of being Spirit-filled and of letting the Holy Spirit guide their language as they grow and develop in it.
b) They need to be instructed in the Bible principle of man’s part and God’s part so they can flow with the Holy Spirit as they pray in tongues on a regular basis.
c) Note: Never instruct someone that God will only give them a few syllables. This will hinder their faith and get them stuck in a rut. God wants everyone to have a fluent prayer language and pray in the spirit with the Holy Spirit continually guiding as they yield their speech to Him. They need to be encouraged to continue to expand their tongues vocabulary (and not just a few syllables at first).

5. It is wonderful to enjoy godly spiritual feelings and God blesses us with many experiences, but only God’s Word is our sure foundation. We can all be thankful for the excellent teaching available today to help us avoid pitfalls, walk in the light ourselves, and teach others as well. God’s way always: 1) lines up with the Bible. 2) His way works right the first time. 3)His way produces good fruit.

IV. Possible Hindrances
A. If they can’t seem to step out and flow…
1. Do they fear the supernatural? Explain away misconception.
2. Are they really saved? May need to be more sure here.
3. Are they living in known sin? Must be willing to repent and give it up.
4. Do they feel guilty and unworthy? Help them get their forgiveness.
5. Are they being pushed into the Baptism in the Holy Spirit by someone else? They aren’t really ready until they really want it themselves.
6. Have they been heavily involved in the occult or false religion? Cast out the blocking spirit.

B. If they still won’t cooperate at all, maybe they’re shy and scared in front of others. Encourage them follow these instructions alone later.

V. Last Instructions After They Receive
A. Explain that you can start and stop tongues at will, like a water faucet on and off. Like Paul says in 1st Corinthians 14:15 and the Holy Spirit is always ready to pray.
B. Obey the scriptures and pray in the spirit always (as in Ephesians 6:18) everyday.
1. Supernatural feelings will come in times of special anointing.
2. Don’t wait for the Spirit to move. Stir up the gift (prayer tongue) (2nd Timothy 1:6).

C. The more you pray in the spirit every day…
1. The more you will be built up spiritually (edified).
2. The easier it is to walk in the spirit.
3. The easier it is to be led by the Spirit.
4. The more likely to enjoy special anointing and boldness.

D. You can direct your praying in the spirit to special needs.
1. Picture the person or situation and pray in the spirit for that one thing. The Holy Spirit will guide you with exactly what is needed.
2. You can also pray in the spirit without picturing anything special and let the Holy Spirit direct, you might be praising God at times and interceding for others at times.
3. In emergencies or times of danger pray in the spirit constantly.
a. It’s like tuning into God’s station and turning up the volume.
b. The Holy Spirit can lead and direct you more clearly.
c. Whatever the emergency, He can pray through you to meet the need of the moment.
d. The Holy Spirit needs a vessel to move through – you can be that vessel or agency in the earth.
4. Praise God and sing in the spirit at will to worship God in the spirit.

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What Does God Think About You…

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Dear You,
How does God think? What does He think about? It’s far beyond our finite minds to comprehend, that’s for sure. I know one thing: He thinks about you all the time. What does He think about you? He loves you very much. Much more than anyone else has even the capacity to.
I will have been walking with him for 40 years come this October and He is still a magnificent mystery to me. But I can definitely say I know Him. How is that possible?
Who can know His thoughts or understand His ways? He reveals them (His thoughts and His ways) to us by his Spirit. If you pray and read your Bible (His love letter to you) you will grow in relationship… in fellowship with Him.
Fair warning – I am coming from the perspective that the Bible is the inspired word of God. So my answers to any and all questions are somewhat biased in that regard, but as I said I have been walking with him for 40 years so much of this comes from experience guided by inspiration.
There’s always more to know about Him.

But as it is written, Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for them that love him. But God has revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searches all things, yea, the deep things of God (1st Corinthians 2: 9-10).

One thing I have learned about God in all these years is that he loves us more than we can possibly know… except He shows us in how He came and died for our sins on the cross… as the only begotten Son of God (e.g. exclusively incarnate deity), He became what we were in spirit (lost and cut off from the Father God) so that we could share in His completely righteous, holy, and divine nature for all eternity. Then He was raised from the dead on our behalf as well. Now we are new creations in Christ if we only believe and receive His free gift to us. It’s free to us, but it cost Jesus dearly.

God has removed sin from between us and Him. Now it’s up to us to declare the Good News that He has completely exonerated us. The sin barrier has been removed. God has reconciled the world unto Himself. Now we, as ambassadors for Christ, plead with everybody on behalf of God, BE RECONCILED TO GOD. Reconciled means to be made friends with Him by receiving what Christ did for you on the cross. He became our sin so that we could become righteous with the very righteousness of God Himself! This is the message we bring to the world. You can read all about it in 2nd Corinthians 5:17-21.
God doesn’t want you to go to hell. The only reason He created hell was for Satan and his outlaw angels (Matthew 25:41), and the reason He is so opposed to “sin“ is because of its corrosive effects on the human soul. Think of sin as a deadly, cancer-causing, highly toxic, contaminating substance that He wants to protect His children from. As the Creator and the sole manufacturer of the human psyche and physical makeup, He knows what is most beneficial to us, and what is not. That’s why He has made the operators handbook (The Bible) available to us.
So as a loving heavenly Father he desires to protect us from the things that will cause us damage. I realize this may seem an oversimplification to your inquiring mind, but it is the simple way of love to want to protect the object of His love from harm.
Psychic damage, soul scars, things that need to be healed spiritually and/or physically are what God is all about helping us get free from. That’s His specialty. In a proactive, preventative sense and in a healing after-the-fact sense, He is the ultimate healer. And this healthcare plan is free!
Think of the parable of the prodigal son. This is the Father‘s heart toward us always. It is redemptive in nature. He is not the fun police, but rather someone who is always reaching, always loving, always desiring to bring us His guidance, protection, care, and His perfect healing.
God wants you healed more than you want to be healed.
Not only so, but He is the most exciting adventurous and fun Dad you could ever imagine!

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who has known the mind of the Lord? or who has been his counsellor? Or who has first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen (Romans 11: 33-36).

Anyway, I hope this helps. Please feel free to contact me with any prayer requests, or questions you have. I may not have all the answers but I know where to go look for them.
Love in Jesus,
Jams

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To Be Continued…

toblog

Or To Blog Continuously

So much to write about, so little time…

How can I continue to type these all too cryptic missives (when talk-to-text is readily available on my iPhone)? Because I am a visionary. Yes, like the Blues Brothers, I’m on a mission from God. Here I type nimbly away, the ever continuous, the centennial sentinel, the unknown broadcaster of salient superfluous preponderance into the blogosphere, one foot in the last millennium, the other in the tricentennial of a republic ordained by God to herald the glorious light of the Gospel to all nations…

How shall I encapsulate this next season of episodes? I could monetize it online and make millions if it goes viral. I could package it as a ten part series and market it to some Christian venue featuring the supernatural, the sensational, the solipsistic… OK, I admit, I just wanted to use that last word in a sentence somehow. Yeah no (don’t you love it when people start a sentence with contradictory answers?), I’m just going to continue what I do for altruistically selfish reasons. This is cathartic for me.

That’s right, I said it. I do this for me first. I mean, let’s be honest, even the act of getting saved (in the biblical sense) is selfish. We give our lives to Jesus to escape the terror of a Christ-less eternity. When we finally see that our self-centered lives are empty, void, and incapable of entering heaven apart from Christ’s death on the cross (and consequent resurrection) we turn to God and surrender all our self-ruled lifestyle. Why? To save our wayward butts from hell, that’s why!

OK… OK… I know that “turn or burn” is not a grace filled motivator, especially in our so-called civilized society, but hey! for some of us, it was definitely an important part of the message. I, for one, had just about exhausted the patience of our loving heavenly Father. In fact, I thank God for the day He sent that long, tall, bearded man, Mike of Tennessee, across my path.

Way back in 1978 I was headed to the liquor store on a Friday night. I was in the Navy and stationed at Memphis-Millington NATTC. We (some fellow sailors and I) were on a mission to get our party on. First on the agenda was to get some alcohol, next we were to meet up with someone who was selling some weed. As I walked from where we parked toward the liquor store I was approached by Mike in front of a weird red, white and blue striped building. Point blank he asked me if I was saved. I thought, “oh no, another one of these religious zealot guys…” I’d been witnessed to (a term for being accosted with the message of how I need to change my evil ways and give my life to God, in my way of thinking) many times before. Most recently and powerfully by my cousin, Tommy, and I was running from the Lord.

“You mean washed in the blood?” I said, hoping to head him off at the pass and throw him off my trail.

But Mike was not to be deterred, “Why yes, that’s exactly what I mean!“ Mike sounded surprised and a little perturbed.

“Yeah, yeah, I heard all that before – and it didn’t work for me.”

Any normal Christian witness would’ve probably been dissuaded at that point, but not Mike. He leaned in, “So you’re saying you’re lost then?”

“Naw… I’m like Davy Crocket, I’ve never been lost, just confused for a few days,” I retorted, in a vain attempt to dismissively relate (not relate) to this backwoods looking wild man with stories he’d surely be familiar with.

Mike was in no mood for small talk, “Young man, I have never heard anybody talk so nonchalantly and dispassionately about the precious blood of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as you just did… I believe you’re lost… in fact I believe you’re going to hell!”

Needless to say that did not set well with me, he was killing my buzz before it even started. I turned away and continued nonchalantly toward the liquor store. I could hear Mike back there talking to my two friends with his Gospel presentation. As I was returning to the car Mike was finishing up with my friends.

“oh yeah… and tell your friend he’s going to hell.”

Even after we were driving away he shouted it out again, singling me out, “Remember guys, Jesus died for your sins… and tell your friend he’s going to hell.”

I was so mad it ruined the rest of my night, what’s worse, nothing went right after that. You know how we were going to score that bag of weed? Well, the dealer wasn’t there. Then I lost my bottle of liquor somehow.

The rest of the night I kept cussing about that guy (Mike). “The nerve of that guy, that’s the problem with those religious people, they go around judging everybody…“

“Hey lighten up, ‘Wink’” my friends laughed at me, “what are you so upset about? Just forget about it.”

I couldn’t let it go. I was under such burning conviction I couldn’t shake it. The Lord had already been working on my heart since my cousin witnessed to me, I knew I was lost in darkness deep inside. I knew there was something terribly wrong inside of me… after all, I had joined the Navy to make a clean break from the sins of the past, the drugs, crime, and occult involvement, and yet, here I was.

That night I couldn’t sleep. I tossed and turned until the early hours, before dawn on the popular local rock station (the radio had been left on all night) featured a Christian program called Josiah Reign. I heard the host conducting interviews with college kids about Jesus, His soon return, His thousand year reign, etc. It felt like water to my thirsty soul.

Not long after that I was relocated. Stationed in Jacksonville Florida, living off-base in a trailer park with a couple of strippers. One of them had a jealous boyfriend who attacked me with a hunting knife in a parking lot down by the beach. My life flashed before my eyes. Here, I had joined the Navy to do something honorable with my life, to rehabilitate myself, and get away from bad influences, and now I was going to end up dead in a beach parking lot and probably bring shame on my family.

Fortunately, two plainclothes policemen, came seemingly out of no where, and stopped him. I was literally scared straight. As soon as I could I got out of that trailer park, moved back on base, and almost immediately the Lord sent a faithful Christian worker to witness to me again. This guy was like a relentless sheep dog. He would not give up on me. I will never forget him. Dave somehow got me to go to church with him and, long story short, as a result the Spirit of God moved on me to answer the altar call and I got gloriously saved, and completely delivered from all my oppression and sin.

Years later I returned to that red, white and blue building, called Liberty Christian Service Center on a Sunday morning where they held church. I just wanted to encourage Mike with that little testimony, and thank him for being part of the Holy Ghost tag team to save my wretched soul.

So there you have it: The turn or burn message was an integral part of my eventual salvation. Even though it initially offended me, ultimately God used it to get me thinking in the right direction, and to ask the right question: “Am I saved?”

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Futurescape: The Grand Finale

 

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Curtain Call

King Nebuchadnezzar had a dream about the day and age we live in. The historical record of this in the Bible tells us we are living in the time of the last empire. We are witnessing the final kingdom prophesied to be the dominant world power when Christ returns. This was foretold in the Book of Daniel, chapter 2 when the King of Babylon had a dream he could not remember. Daniel received from God both the details of the dream and its meaning. Daniel’s prescient dream interpretation states the following:

This image’s head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, his legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay. You watched till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth (vs 32-36).

History Recap

Have you ever had a powerful dream but you could not remember it? Then you know how frustrating this can be. In the above passage Daniel was given insight into King Nebuchadnezzar’s forgotten dream. Not only that, but Daniel was shown the details without ever being told what the dream was. He goes on to tell King “Neb” that the 5 different metals contained in this statue he dreamed of represent 5 different empires. The golden head represents the Babylonian Empire, the silver part (chest and arms) represents the Persia-Mede empire, the brass (belly and thighs) represents Alexander the Great, or the Greek empire, the iron (lower legs and ankles) represents the Roman Empire, and the broken pieces of iron mixed with clay (feet) represent a revived form of the Roman Empire. This last empire is represented by the feet of this statue, and more specifically: the 10 toes.

Note: Upon further study of Bible prophecy it becomes increasingly evident that these 10 toes correspond with the 10 horns on the head of the Beast (Revelation 17:12).

This is How it’s Going Down

Without going into all the supporting scripture verses right now, this is the way the final days of this last empire are going to play out. Europe (a revived form of the Roman empire) will become the dominant world power but only after World War III takes place. This will be a war worse than any the earth has ever seen. One-third of the earth’s population will be destroyed.

Before we get into all that, let’s briefly examine the events leading up to, and culminating in, this global tragedy. It all starts (where else?) in the Middle East (ME). Russia will continue its efforts to gain more power and influence over the Arab and ME nations (e.g. Syria, Iran, Iraq, UAE, Libya, and so on). Israel is almost completely surrounded by outside hostile forces. I say “almost,” because there are some nations (e.g. Egypt, Jordan, (Dan. 11:41-45)) that have remained on peaceful terms with Israel (such as America). And these retain their sovereignty even during the reign of the Beast (but I’m getting ahead of myself).

At some point the surrounding provocations and rising tensions escalate to the level where Israel is forced to take action. Israel, being extremely vulnerable to the threat of annihilation by surrounding hostile forces, makes good on its promise to do whatever is necessary to stop Iran from getting a nuclear bomb. At first, much of this is accomplished through counter-intelligence, cyber attacks, sabotaging systems, and when absolutely necessary, surgical strikes.

Meanwhile, America and other allies speak out on behalf of, and stand with Israel, but the rage of the religious extremists, and deceitful rhetoric fostered by the fake news main stream media propaganda outlets continually incite the antisemitic world into a hate fueled frenzy. What’s worse, the most radicalized proponents of the jihad caliphate believe the sooner they move to destroy Israel the sooner the 12th Imam will arrive. He will be ushered in, through violent takeover, they believe, to bring their long awaited millennial reign.

Aside from all these religious extremist catalysts, there are many socio-economic motivators going down. The factors contributing to this decision to strike at Israel are manifold.

Note: One thing we know for certain from the Bible: God will put hooks in their jaws and drag them into attacking Israel. Whether you take this an active or passive act on God’s part, the end result will be He will show Himself to be Israel’s Savior. How will this be accomplished in the natural?

While much of the world’s oil supply remains in ME control, there are augmented economic factors (imposed sanctions and the like) keeping them from charging the prices they want to finance their eventual global domination. Russia controls much of the oil industry in that region. Europe is now turning away from OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) to buy oil from America at much better prices.

Israel, of course, finds herself right smack dab in the middle of conflict. Her strategic defense systems (e.g. the iron dome), built up to protect her from incoming rockets from hostile nations, are superior to her rivals. But now she has yet one more huge threat in China. How this small piece of real estate (about the size of New Jersey), and her capitol Jerusalem, can be the most hotly contested property on the planet, is proof positive that this is a spiritual battle. israelnewjerseyWhat happens next will change the entire paradigm of planet earth.

Without getting into all the gory details, the ensuing war results in over 2 billion people being wiped off the face of the map. Mostly people in the surrounding Arab nations, but many in China and Russia are destroyed in the exchange. Somehow, miraculously, Israel is not destroyed. Many are saying it is an act of Almighty God. There is no other possible explanation.

By now, though, there is widespread panic among all the nations of the earth. The rest of the surrounding landscape is devastation. It defies description. With the increase in disease and pestilence, there are continued random acts of terrorism and related carnage. There is a drastic increase in natural disasters. Seismic reverberations continue to shudder the planet across Northern India, Eurasia and all around the ME. These continue to increase in magnitude, frequency, and duration, coming from deep within the earth, until the inevitable happens…

The mother of all earthquakes hits, and hits hard. Seismologists remark that the impact is off the richter scale. Nuclear power plants start spewing out radioactive waste, gas lines are ruptured and catch fire, entire cities are engulfed in flames. A state of international emergency is declared.

We’re Not in Kansas Anymore

By now, the landscape of our planet has shifted so dramatically that the mindset of the earth’s inhabitants is one of complete desperation. Then, as if in answer to the cries of the nations, a leader rises up out of the European Common Market. Many of the solutions presented would be unthinkable a decade ago, but desperate times call for desperate measures. Not the least of which is this new world leader’s call for the harvesting of living humans for biological engineering purposes, all for the greater good.

The sustainable maintenance of those elitist beings deemed worthy to continue living has become the order of the day. The appointment of survivors (the elites) implemented by this new leader, as well as the selection of those who must give their lives for the ultimate solution is carried out by social media driven algorithms. All who refuse to go along with the rhythm and reject the notion of a one true God (declared to be a racist, exclusive, and antiquated belief), and all those who continue to reject pledging allegiance to this new world leader and deny the chosen of humanity’s survival in the universe, are immediately scheduled for the ultimate solution camps.

This is where they are slated to be used for human guinea pigs, spare parts, scientific study, and biogenetics. The latter, being the science of bio-engineered organs, body parts, and DNA replication. Everything from cell tissue reconstitution, stem cell research, experimentation, to complete cosmetic makeovers, takes place here.

The law for the good of all, as it is commonly referred to, is even sanctioned by the state church. The Church of Human Divinity claims as its true deity the human collective unconscious, and proclaims the new world leader as the true savior of humankind. Modern medical miracles of biological engineering and technology are performed here. Simultaneously, there are other wonders seen in the skies, strange UFO like appearances, and holographic imagery broadcasts worldwide.

Eventually, this world leader, who, by now as I’m sure you’ve guessed, is none-other-than the Beast, is given power over the 10 kings of Europe and the Mediterranean. At a certain point he reunites all of the land mass of made up of Iraq, parts of Turkey, and Iran, and renames them as Persia, under one king. He hates that he does not have total control over all regions such as Israel, Egypt and Jordan. They continue to war against the new world leader known as the Beast. America and parts of Canada and South America are not fully surrendered to his control. These areas of resistance enrage him but he has a diabolical plan remedy this.

He conspires to make a pact with Israel to give them access to rebuild the temple and do animal sacrifice, if they will give him unrestricted access to Jerusalem, and its temple. Currently he has taken control of many parts of Israel by force and holds only half of Jerusalem. Many believe he is the 12th Imam, the Jewish Messiah, and/or “God” incarnate. Some believe he will break his truce eventually. This animal sacrifice practice only continues for a short period of time. The animal rights activists complain so much that the sacrifices are soon discontinued.

Disclaimer: The foregoing is not to be taken verbatim as the way things will specifically play out. It is just a dramatized timeline of events that could possibly fit the Biblical narrative.

Antichrist, or the Beast, will not come under the guise of religion, he will use religion (the great harlot) and then kill her when he’s done with her. He will not speak of God much, except to blaspheme. Conversely, he will come saying anyone who is of any of those One-God religions is exclusive and they must convert to believe only in the science behind all religions, including satanism and atheism. All One-God religions will be condemned as divisive, and the cause of all the world’s problems. He will deceive many at first with his accomplice, a self-proclaimed prophet, one who performs all manner of lying signs and wonders. A little while later he will proclaim the Jerusalem temple as his headquarters, and declare himself to be God Almighty. At that time he will perform the unthinkable as a sacrifice to himself. At this point many of those who believed he was the Jewish Messiah will know he is a fraud (this is what’s referred to by Daniel (and Jesus) as the abomination of desolation.

Important Public Announcement

To all those remaining on earth at this time: to follow the antichrist you will have to take the number, which will be accompanied by a pledge to deny God, and swear allegiance to the antichrist, and take his mark. This will, no doubt, be some type of ceremony to swear allegiance to Satan, and vow to worship him. The only way to go to hell, or to have your name blotted out of the Lamb’s Book of Life, is to blaspheme the Holy Spirit. This is the sin warned about in the Bible, the only one that can send you to hell, a sin carried all the way to death. It will have to be something that is ongoing, and not just a one time occurrence or act. The sin unto death, as it is called, is a willful rejection of Christ, or blasphemy of the Holy Spirit (refusing to recognize Him). The sin unto death is a continual pushing away of the Spirit’s conviction of our need to believe on Christ. No one goes to hell inadvertently. No one says, “whoops how did I end up here?!” No one will be able to accuse God, when they stand before Him on Judgement Day, of not giving them a chance to hear and believe.
“They have Moses and the prophets, if they don’t believe them, they will not believe though one were to come back from the dead and warn them.” -Abraham (to the rich man in hell) in Jesus’s story about Lazarus and the rich man.
There is one escape from this strong delusion that will come over the inhabitants of the earth. Believe the Gospel (the Good News) about Jesus and take Him as your Lord and Savior. When you become a child of God through Jesus you are saved. God will catch away His church out of the earth before antichrist comes into power, most likely sometime after World War III, after the temple is built and before the abomination of desolation. There in heaven with Jesus we will witness all these things happening on earth. We will be partying at the Marriage Feast of the Lamb, as this time of God’s wrath upon the disobedient nations. When is accomplished the time of Jacob’s Trouble upon all those who refuse to change their wicked ways. After which we will return with Jesus to set up His kingdom empire (the stone hewn from the mountain without hands) here on earth for the true millennium, the one thousand year reign of Christ.

Only Believe

Do you believe the Bible’s account of this End Time scenario? Do you want to escape this terrible time of times? If so then pray this prayer with me:
Dear Lord Jesus, come into my heart and be my Lord and Savior. Wash away my sins, come live in and through me by Your Holy Spirit. Lead me continually to live for You and be led by You. Give me Your promise of eternal life, starting here on earth, and continuing with You in heaven forever. Amen.
If you prayed that prayer and meant it with all your heart you, my friend, are saved! Jesus will make your heart His home as you continue to follow Him through His Word (the Bible). Pray and ask Him to lead you every day and get involved with a good Bible-believing church. God promises He will save you from the wrath to come in the end times.

 

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Brad and the Bar Busters

st-paul-preaching-at-athens-raphael It was a beautiful evening and all seemed right with the world, so I thought I’d walk over to my friend’s house to drop in on him for a friendly visit. He had recently moved to a house only a few doors down so it was convenient to come by unannounced, as we often did with one another. Another neighborhood friend, Alex, just happened to enjoin me on the way so we walked in together. There was Brad, pacing back and forth like a caged tiger in front of the TV. He was obviously unsettled about something.

“You see that?” he pointed toward the TV set, “That’s the problem right there!”

We looked to see a well known televangelist preaching away on the television.

At this point I should probably give you a little background on Brad. He had recently recommitted his life to Christ, but he was by no means a new believer. No, Brad was raised in church, had studied theology, and had been a believer for many years, but he had lost the passion and become somewhat disillusioned. Once the Holy Spirit came upon him and filled Brad to overflowing he became a flame of fire for evangelism and passionate prayer. He was like a Billy Graham on steroids!

“The problem is,” Brad continued, “these guys are not going out into the streets where people live. Most people will never tune into these cable channels, let alone go into a church. God’s been speaking to me about this. For days now he’s been telling me to go… and specifically He’s been all over me to go to that bar down the street and reach out to those people.”

That bar was called the Liberty Bar and Grill right on the main boulevard about a mile from the Norfolk Naval Base. The three of us, caught up in Brad’s zeal, went out to pray. We knew the importance of beseeching the Lord of the Harvest before such an undertaking. The prayer place of choice (and convenience) was a cornfield behind Brad’s house. It was one I frequented for times of prayer. Surrounded by a large open area, an outdoor secret place of sorts, it was a perfect for intercession and travail. As we prayed we asked God to move in power by His Holy Spirit and work His will in and through us. Have Your way oh Lord!

We loosely formulated a game plan and walked to where the bar was a couple of blocks away. Our strategy was for Brad to go to the back of the bar, me to the center, Alex to remain close to the front, and all of us to begin passing out gospel tracts to the patrons there. It was going to be a quick hit and run.

However, something strange happened the moment we entered the bar. Brad, who was obviously moved by the Spirit of God, raised his hands high in the air and walked into the open area between the bar counter and the seating booths. Immediately, as if on cue, the music on the jukebox stopped. A hush fell over the bar room. Everyone’s eyes were now on Brad as he looked like he was ready to make an important announcement.

Brad’s face shined with a bright light, his eyes were wide with surprise, and he had a big smile on his face. What came out of his mouth went something like this:

May I have everyone’s attention please? Listen up. God has a message for all of you here in this bar and it’s very simply this: Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, came and gave His life on the cross to die for our sins and then was raised up by the Spirit of Almighty God so that we could have eternal life with Him, starting right here on earth and continuing with Him in heaven for all eternity. So repent of your sins, receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Let Him into your hearts this very night and be saved and set free from your sins and the sins of this world…

Before we knew what had just happened, it was over and the music came back on. Some of the people at the bar came up to us and wanted to receive Jesus. There were guys holding their mugs of beer saying they wanted to quit drinking and live for Jesus and asking us to pray with them. We gathered as many as were willing (about a half dozen of them) and stepped outside to pray with them to receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior. We gave them some final words of encouragement, some personal testimony, and encouraged them to get involved with a good Bible believing church, and departed.

Brad later recounted that the moment we entered the bar something else (God) took over and he knew exactly what he was supposed to do and say. We were all so pumped we got in a car and went looking for some more bars to bust for Jesus.

About an hour or so later, as we drove back by the Liberty Bar, there were paddy wagons and police cars out front and it looked like people were being hauled out of there. We immediately recalled how Jesus taught in Mark 4:15 how satan comes immediately to take away the Word that is sown in the hearts of those who hear it, and we prayed that God’s will would be done in the lives of all those who were there.

Before going to witness to someone, or to a group of people, no matter what your strategy, always spend time in prayer and ask God to take over, speak through you, and work miracles. Then, get a partner, step out in faith, and watch God do wonders in peoples lives!

Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine (2nd Timothy 4:2) 

 

 

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A Sneak Preview of God’s Glory

maracasThe entire scene I had just stepped into engulfed me in total splendor and unbelievable bliss. The bright warm sun, the hot white sand, the blue water and tropical landscape all congealed into a heaven on earth surrounding me. The drive to get here was one of the most scenic I’d ever witnessed. Traveling on roads winding through a canopy of botanical rainforest delights, until letting out onto the most lavish little oasis imaginable. All I wanted to do was lay down in the sand and melt into the background.

How many times had I told myself if I ever got laid off from my seemingly ceaseless shift work at the plant I would take as much time off as I could afford? Just to have time to unwind and soak in the sun (forget the upgrade and the raise just give me those radiant rays). I could only imagine what it would feel like. Nothing but free time to heal from my years of self-abuse, anxiety and pressure related to the duress of a high stress environment.

That time was not yet… and yet, here I was. Ravished by a simple sampling of glorious sun splattered paradise to thaw out my frozen bones and icy heart. I still had to report back to work in a week, but the perfect conditions I’d long sought after were all here, temporarily. It went by way too quickly. I barely had a chance to sit down in the wondrous warmth and take in the sights when it was time for our little tour bus to depart again. The wedding party agenda was filled with already scheduled events for the day. I vowed a silent pledge to return someday. Perhaps not this exact location but someplace like it, someday, somehow, sometime, a time to stay much longer.

Have you been pushing yourself to make ends meet? Are the rigorous demands of the cold, harsh responsibilities of life wearing on you? Do you find too little time to devote to the passions that refresh your soul? Don’t give up! God, the Creator of all things, has given us detailed instructions in the operator’s handbook for all who drive these bodies we live in. It’s called the Bible. In it, He gives us the keys to maintain strong and healthy lives full of gusto.

We catch a glimpse of this in Romans chapter 8:

22-25 All around us we observe a pregnant creation. The difficult times of pain throughout the world are simply birth pangs. But it’s not only around us; it’s within us. The Spirit of God is arousing us within. We’re also feeling the birth pangs. These sterile and barren bodies of ours are yearning for full deliverance. That is why waiting does not diminish us, any more than waiting diminishes a pregnant mother. We are enlarged in the waiting. We, of course, don’t see what is enlarging us. But the longer we wait, the larger we become, and the more joyful our expectancy.

26-28 Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.

29-30 God knew what he was doing from the very beginning. He decided from the outset to shape the lives of those who love him along the same lines as the life of his Son. The Son stands first in the line of humanity he restored. We see the original and intended shape of our lives there in him. After God made that decision of what his children should be like, he followed it up by calling people by name. After he called them by name, he set them on a solid basis with himself. And then, after getting them established, he stayed with them to the end, gloriously completing what he had begun.

31-39 So, what do you think? With God on our side like this, how can we lose? If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us? And who would dare tangle with God by messing with one of God’s chosen? Who would dare even to point a finger? The One who died for us—who was raised to life for us!—is in the presence of God at this very moment sticking up for us. Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ’s love for us? There is no way! Not trouble, not hard times, not hatred, not hunger, not homelessness, not bullying threats, not backstabbing, not even the worst sins listed in Scripture:

They kill us in cold blood because they hate you.
We’re sitting ducks; they pick us off one by one.

None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us. I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.

(The Message translation: Romans 8:22-39)

Personally, I like the KJV (King James Version) but isn’t that a beautifully worded translation? All this is very comforting and reassures us of God’s promise, that we can actually experience a foretaste of what God has prepared for us in heaven. While we’re here on earth! Eternal Life is not just a promise for the sweet by and by, it’s not just an infinite span of time, but a quality of life that begins right here and now, and continues with Him in heaven forever. How He delights to soothe our souls with His heavenly goodness along the way. Here is another passage (from the KJV) that deals with God’s desire to bless us here on earth with a sneak preview of what awaits us:

…as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

(1st Corinthians 2:9-10)

Oh how we need this. How we need to actively seek to be in the presence of God and just soak Him into our lives from the outside. As well as calling on his Spirit (deep calls to deep) to emanate outward from within, where He dwells. This is the 2-pronged assault on the un-renewed mind and the unbelief which threatens to encrust our hearts. This is God’s divine radiation treatment, the holy exuding foretaste of glory He wants us to be marinated in. This is that resurrection life we need to explode inside of us… So that our cup would run over… So that He might be most glorified in us, and through us, wherever we go. This is the rest we must labor to enter into.

About that paradise on earth I secretly vowed to return to… the time did come when I quit that job and had plenty of time to bask in the sun on some beach somewhere. It was heaven on earth. A fulfillment of that promise I made to myself.

Remember, Jesus teaches us to pray that God’s will would be done, “on earth as it is in heaven…” In heaven there is no need for a foretaste. It’s all glory… all the time.

Happy Resurrection Day!

Here’s an old Johnny Cash song remake done by Molly Skaggs (Ricky’s daughter). Enjoy!

 

 

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How to Extract your Head from the Dark and Remote Regions…

E82765F3-A7E3-4276-8564-FA8EBF98FFBA.jpegLife had taken some sordid twists and turns. My garden variety hedonism and party lifestyle left me pretty much bereft of any sense of direction for my life. Or much of any sense at all (for that matter). Too much drug abuse and tripping on acid left me mentally deficient of brain cells. I was burned out. Drugs, a broken heart, dabbling in the occult… it all weighed me down and depressed me. Demons tormented me. I felt I was irreparably psychically damaged. My third eye was blocked by metaphysical glut. I thought of suicide often. I was in a very dark place.

On my birthday I hit the road and came down to Florida, to get my head together. I spent the summer partying and working in the hot sun, but come Fall time I ended up joining the Navy.

My Navy friend, John (not his real name), had warned me over and over not to, but I just knew it was my destiny. How did I know? Well, one night, as summer drew to a close, I was sitting on the wrap around porch of our old family vacation home (and smoking a bowl, as was my custom). It was about midnight. The nights were starting to get chilly. The tourists were all gone and the days were getting shorter. What am I going to do with my life? Where do I go from here? What is the next step?

My mind was full of questions. My cousin, Tommy, who lived down there, had been telling me about Jesus, that He’s a real person and desires to have a relationship with me. I had prayed and invited him to come and be my Lord and Savior, but nothing much had changed. Being raised a Catholic boy I had prayed that prayer before. In fact, one time, years ago, after being witnessed to by a fellow traveller at a hotel I became so excited about Jesus I began to tell people about Him. I even told my girlfriend, Linda (not her real name), I wanted us to live for Him from now on. I read to her out of Corinthians about how the greatest is love! Even she was caught up with my enthusiasm. Linda had turned away from the Baptist church as a youngster because they wanted her to be baptized, and she didn’t think God would require that of her, you know, as a prerequisite to heaven. At least, that was her story.

My story was somewhat different. I was raised to believe, as a Catholic, that the sprinkling we received at birth was enough to get us into heaven. Well, actually you had to confirm the vows spoken over you at that time of infant consecration, later when you were of age. We called it Confirmation. In preparation for the sacrament of Confirmation we were told that this was our decision to, not only confirm those vows but, become soldiers for Christ, as we moved into young adulthood.

Shortly after that momentous event in my life, I was lying on my bed, reflecting on all that it means to be a Soldier for Christ and I heard something like the following thought in my head,

You don’t want to live for Christ just yet, after all, you’re a young man, you still have your teenage years ahead of you, give yourself time to sow your wild oats, live it up a little, you know, wine, women and song, and all that… you can always live for Jesus when you’re old, like about 21 or so.

It wasn’t exactly a conscious thought but that was the general gist of it.

That was a turn at a fork in the road that, while seemingly somewhat innocent at the time, led me down a very dark and treacherous path, one that I almost never escaped from.

Cousin Tommy (the one who often talked to me about Jesus and the Bible) said my heart was in the right place but I had scrambled eggs for brains. You know they say you can scramble eggs but you can’t unscramble them. I was sure that I was too far gone to believe in his Gospel. I knew too much (or so I thought). I was so far into ufology and occultism that I thought his simple minded faith was not enough to save me. That’s how far gone I was.

Had it not been for a miracle from God (literally) I might never have recovered. But I’m getting ahead of myself… As I sat on that porch in Florida and pondered my path, God spoke to me in answer to a prayer. I asked Him to show me His will for my life. The promptness of God’s answer surprised me.

I was looking at the neighbor’s house as I prayed and oddly enough it turned into a ship! I wasn’t even that high, for heaven’s sake, but the image was undeniable. The neighbor was a ham radio operator, so he had a big tower ascending up out the small upper section on the third level that looked like the mainmast. The well- trimmed bushes around the yard looked like the gunwale, and the house itself looked like the superstructure. Just then I heard the words, “Join the Navy,”

That was the first step toward the miraculous extraction of my head, and the unscrambling of my brains!

When you pray and ask God for wisdom, have faith that He loves you, cares about your life, and will answer you… don’t blow it by unbelief, and He will show you what to do.

( James 1: 1-5 Paraphrased).

 

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