Thursday, February 18, 2016


One of our men's LifeGroups is going through the book, "Fight" by Craig Groeschel.

The current discussion is about the Life of Samson, " incredibly strong man with a dangerously weak will."

In the natural, he truly was a Super Hero with Super Powers...however, spiritually, he had major struggles that eventually cost him his life.

God had granted Samson this supernatural strength in exchange for a Nazarite Vow of holiness and dedication to Him.

The Requirements:
  1. Don't get Drunk
  2. Don't touch anything Dead
  3. Don't cut your Hair
Samson ended up doing all three...with a weakness for women from the enemy's camp as well.

Even with all his sin, God used him greatly for a season. 

His life teaches us a few lessons:
  • Just because God is using you, even supernaturally, does NOT mean you are walking in His will and obedience
  • Though you are operating in a Gifting God has given you, that is no guarantee you will stay in God's good Grace

Consider this Scripture:

Romans 11:29 Amplified Bible 
For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable [for He does not withdraw what He has given, nor does He change His mind about those to whom He gives His grace or to whom He sends His call].

We may be anointed with a particular Gifting, but what matters in the end is our integrity and obedience to the Lord.

You will not go to Heaven because you were a Gifted man or woman of God. God is the one Who gave you that that could not possibly qualify you for Salvation. 

Salvation is acquired by Faith in Jesus, and maintained through Actions of obedience to Jesus as your Lord.

There are many Christians and non-Christians alike in this world, operating in God-given Giftings...

It is really a question of, will you use them for Jesus or for the World?

Friday, February 12, 2016

God is doing NOTHING??

Have you ever been around people who are stuck in negativity? Everything they say has a twist of heaviness to it? They seem to suck the life out of the room.

This is a person who has lost Hope.

Israel found themselves in such a place many times in their history as they pulled away from God in their Culture and gave into Sinfulness, believing they were being progressive and modern, throwing away the "old ways" of thinking.

Now, it didn't happen overnight, or even in one generation. It came over time, one compromise at a time...and the result was a despondent people, wallowing in doubt and negativity, who lost their Hope in God.

Zephaniah 1:12 NKJV 
"And it shall come to pass at that time that I will search Jerusalem with lamps, and punish the men who are settled in complacency, Who say in their heart, 'The Lord will not do good, Nor will He do evil.'

These people believed God was doing NOTHING...good or bad.

Ecclesiastes 11:4-5 NASB 
He who watches the wind will not sow and he who looks at the clouds will not reap. 5 Just as you do not know the path of the wind and how bones are formed in the womb of the pregnant woman, so you do not know the activity of God who makes all things.

The following familiar passage teaches us HOW God thinks.

Isaiah 55:8-9 NKJV 
"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," says the Lord"For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.

It is an entirely different thing to know WHAT God is thinking and doing at this exact moment.

God is ALWAYS moving and working. Just because we are unaware at the moment of his working, does not mean He has become complacent and lazy.

In the times we begin to feel far from the Lord, it is imperative we do not let go of our Hope and begin speaking doubt, unbelief and negativity. 

This is NEVER God's way.

We ALL face trials and tribulations. 

Do not give in to the temptation to speak evil over your situation, but rather speak the Word of God! For He said in the same passage from above:

Isaiah 55:10-11 NKJV 
10 "For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, And do not return there, But water the earth, And make it bring forth and bud, That it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater, 11 So shall My Word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.

God is MOVING!

Remember how Great and Terrifying the Lord is...

As believers and followers of Christ, there will be times of persecution and difficulty from our Enemy, the devil. 

The New Testament teaches us in Ephesians 6, that we wrestle not against flesh and blood (people), but the real imposters behind these attacks are from the invisible realm... "principalities, powers, the rulers of the darkness of this world and spiritual wickedness in high places."

When you find yourself in this place, how do you handle it?

Our first response should be to raise our Shield of Faith. This is a response to look to the Lord who is our Protecter from the Enemy.

In the story of Nehemiah, he was sent back to Jerusalem from the Kingdom of the Medes and Persians, where the Jews had been in captivity for 70 years. He was now the Governor purposed to rebuild the Wall around the City.

He had enemies coming against him using every trick in the book to bring Division, Discord, and Discouragement.

Nehemiah 4:1-3 NLT Sanballat was very angry when he learned that we were rebuilding the wall. He flew into a rage and mocked the Jews, 2 saying in front of his friends and the Samarian army officers, "What does this bunch of poor, feeble Jews think they're doing? Do they think they can build the wall in a single day by just offering a few sacrifices?Do they actually think they can make something of stones from a rubbish heap-and charred ones at that?"
3 Tobiah the Ammonite, who was standing beside him, remarked, "That stone wall would collapse if even a fox walked along the top of it!"

Nehemiah 4:6-8 NLT At last the wall was completed to half its height around the entire city, for the people had worked with enthusiasm.
7 But when Sanballat and Tobiah and the Arabs, Ammonites, and Ashdodites heard that the work was going ahead and that the gaps in the wall of Jerusalem were being repaired, they were furious. 8 They all made plans to come and fight against Jerusalem and throw us into confusion.
When the Enemy comes against us, it can feel overwhelming and cause a temptation to fear and begin speaking doubt and unbelief.

Nehemiah 4:10-18 NLT Then the people of Judah began to complain, "The workers are getting tired, and there is so much rubble to be moved. We will never be able to build the wall by ourselves."
11 Meanwhile, our enemies were saying, "Before they know what's happening, we will swoop down on them and kill them and end their work."
12 The Jews who lived near the enemy came and told us again and again, "They will come from all directions and attack us!" 

Look here at Nehemiah's  Leadership and Encouragement to his people:

Nehemiah 4:13-14 NLT So I placed armed guards behind the lowest parts of the wall in the exposed areas. I stationed the people to stand guard by families, armed with swords, spears, and bows.
14 Then as I looked over the situation, I called together the nobles and the rest of the people and said to them, "Don't be afraid of the enemy! Remember the Lord, who is great and glorious, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes!"

Look how it is stated in the Good News Translation

Don't be afraid of our enemies. Remember how great and terrifying the Lord is, and fight...

WOW! That word, TERRIFYING to describe the Lord is amazing. We see Him as our Loving Savior and Protector...imagine how Satan sees Him! GREAT, TERRIFYING, GLORIOUS!

The Enemy is NO MATCH for Jesus!

Nehemiah 4:15-18 NLT When our enemies heard that we knew of their plans and that God had frustrated them, we all returned to our work on the wall. 16 But from then on, only half my men worked while the other half stood guard with spears, shields, bows, and coats of mail. The leaders stationed themselves behind the people of Judah 17 who were building the wall. The laborers carried on their work with one hand supporting their load and one hand holding a weapon. 18 All the builders had a sword belted to their side. The trumpeter stayed with me to sound the alarm.
What a picture of our Spiritual Life...building the Kingdom with one hand, and keeping the devil in his place with the other, as we keep up that Shield of Faith, and speak the Word of God over our trials as our Sword of the Spirit!

Here is the result of Nehemiah's faith and Godly Leadership:

Nehemiah 6:15 GNT After 52 days of work the entire wall was finished on the 25th day of the month of Elul.
Trust the Lord to fight your battles!