Feeding Sheep or Amusing Goats…

Hebrews 10:25 “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”

Reaching the masses by Feeding Sheep or Amusing Goats…

An evil is in the professed camp of the Lord, so gross in its impudence, that the most short-sighted can hardly fail to notice it. During the past few years it has developed at an abnormal rate, even for evil. It has worked like leaven until the whole lump ferments. The devil has seldom done a cleverer thing than hinting to the Church that part of their mission is to provide entertainment for the people, with a view to winning them. From speaking out as the Puritans did, some Churches have gradually toned down their testimony, then winked at and excused the frivolities of the day. Then they have complacency in their borders. Now they have adopted them under the plea of reaching the masses.

My first contention is that providing amusement for the people is nowhere spoken of in the Scriptures as a function of the Church. If it is a Christian work why did not Christ speak of it? “Go you into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” That is clear enough. So it would have been if he had added, “and provide amusement for those who do not relish the gospel.” No such words, however, are to be found. It did not seem to occur to him . . . .

Again, providing amusement is in direct antagonism to the teaching and life of Christ and all his
apostles. What was the attitude of the Church to the world? “Ye are the salt,” not the sugar candy — something the world will spit out, not swallow . . . . I do not hear [Jesus] say, “Run after these people, Peter, and tell them we will have a different style of service tomorrow, something short and attractive with little preaching. We will have a pleasant evening for the people. Tell them they will be sure to enjoy it.

Be quick, Peter, we must get the people somehow!” Jesus pitied sinners, sighed and wept over them, but never sought to amuse them. In vain will the Epistles be searched to find any trace of the gospel of amusement . . . .

Lastly, the mission of amusement fails to affect the end desired. It works havoc among young converts. Let the careless and scoffers, who thank God because the Church met them half-way, speak and testify. Let the heavy laden who found peace through the concert not keep silent! Let the drunkard, to whom the dramatic entertainment had been God’s link in the chain of their conversion, stand up! There are none to answer. The mission of amusement produces no converts. The need of the hour for today’s ministry is believing scholarship joined with earnest spirituality, the one springing from the other as fruit from the root. The need is biblical doctrine, so understood and felt that it sets men on fire.

by C.H. Spurgeon

Be careful not to allow you and your family fall into this trap. Seek out God’s truths and understand that He loves us and sacrificed His only Son for us. In turn He desires our eternal fellowship if we will but place our faith in Him. The Bride of Christ, the Church, was not designed as an entertainment center. It was designed to equip believers to go into the world and make disciples!

 Matthew 28:19-20 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

Ephesians 4:11-12 “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:”

Luke 9:23 “And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.”

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Are you standing on Holy Ground…

Hebrews 11:6 “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh
to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”

Are you Standing on Holy Ground?

Your attitude reflects your respect, reverence and fear of our God. Or the lack of it. How or what is you view of God this morning?

The most powerless position for you is lying flat on your face. It makes you weak, vulnerable and unable to do anything about the situation. But it is also, in the strange ways of God, the most powerful position on earth. In the following example and in our lives it can reflect our attitude. Joshua gives us an example of that.

Joshua (Joshua 5:13) is up against maybe the most intimidating, potentially fearful situation of his life. To date he has bravely led God’s people into Canaan, only to be confronted with the massive walled city of Jericho, looming before God’s people as a seemingly impossible obstacle between them and the land that God has promised. As their commanding general, Joshua has gone to scout out his Mission Impossible.

Scripture tells us: “Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, ‘Are you for us or for our enemies?’ ‘Neither,’ he replied, “but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.’ Then Joshua fell face down to the ground in reverence (There it is. That’s that position of total powerlessness.) and (he) asked him, ‘What message does my Lord have for his servant?’ The commander of the Lord’s army replied, ‘Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy.’ And Joshua did so.”

Many Bible scholars believe that this Commander of the Lord’s forces is actually the Son of God making one of several pre-Bethlehem appearances in Old Testament times. No angel would have accepted worship, and Joshua calls him “my Lord.” Rightfully if it is Jesus, Joshua falls on the ground, face down. Joshua was very competent, very successful, very skilled; a man and a leader of an army who had never surrendered to anybody. But this day he surrenders, and that is going to be the secret of winning. From this moment of total surrender of his will and life, of total powerlessness before the Lord comes God’s unusual plan for conquering Jericho. But before there could be the conquest of Jericho, there had to be the conquest of Joshua.

And before there can be the conquest of the Jericho that looms before you right now in your life, there must be the conquest of you. God allows things into our life that will bring us to the end of ourselves where all your experience, and your talent, your wisdom, your connections, and your persuasion are useless in getting an answer. At that point you will turn to someone and hopefully it is not to self or worldly wisdom but to God. God has brought you to this moment of total helplessness, not so you would give up, but so you would give over the controls to Him totally, unconditionally. There is no condition God can do more with than our admission of powerlessness. Now you’re out of the way finally, and now you can see what Almighty God can do!

Where do you turn when you are standing facing the walls of a Jericho in your life that you can’t possibly conquer? That is the perfect time for your unconditional surrender to your Lord. Admit your powerlessness. Often it is the breaking of a man or woman that is the making of a man. And believe it or not on your knees or on your face is actually a great place to be;

Listen to what God told Paul when he asked to have a thorn in his flesh removed by God;

 2 Cor. 12:7-9 “And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

God’s will for your Life…

II Peter 3:18 “But grow in the grace and in the knowledge of our Lord
Jesus Christ…”

 God’s will for your Life….

A new Christian was walking with a more mature friend in a garden one
day and feeling a bit insecure about God’s will for his life, he inquired what
he should do.  His friend walked up to a rosebush, handed him a rosebud,
and told him to open it without tearing off any petals.

The new Christian looked in disbelief at his friend and tried to figure out
what a rosebud could possibly have to do with his wanting to know the
WILL OF GOD for his life But because of his high respect for his friend
proceeded to TRY to unfold the rose, while keeping every petal intact…It
wasn’t long before he realized how impossible it was to do so.

Noticing the younger Christian’s inability to unfold the rosebud while
keeping it intact, his friend began to recite the following poem…

It is only a tiny rosebud,
A flower of GOD’s design;
But I cannot unfold the petals
With these clumsy hands of mine.

The secret of unfolding flowers
is not known to such as I.
GOD opens this flower so sweetly,
when in my hands they fade and die.

If I cannot unfold a rosebud,
This flower of GOD’s design,
Then how can I think I have wisdom
To unfold this life of mine?

So I’ll trust in Him for His leading
each moment of every day.
I will look to him for His guidance
each step of the pilgrim way.

The pathway that lies before me,
only my Heavenly Father knows.
I’ll trust Him to unfold the moments, just as He unfolds the rose.

How strong is your faith this morning????????? I know mine is being
developed daily by my Savior, Jesus. Good thing, for by myself I would
fail miserably.

II Peter 3:18 “But grow in the grace and in the knowledge of our
Lord Jesus Christ to Him be the glory both now and forever, amen.”

Are you ready, Jesus is coming a 2nd time…

I Thes 1:7-9 “…the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from Heaven with His mighty angels; in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that do not know God and who do not obey the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the Glory of His power.”

Are you ready, Jesus is coming a 2nd time!

The Lord is coming,
All eyes shall see,
and most shall ask,
“Who art thee?”

Their knees shall buckle,
and down they’ll go,
upon their face,
so their sin won’t show.

‘My Lord, O’ God!
What is my lot?”
And he shall answer
“Your Lord, I am not!

Depart from me,
Foul creature of sin your
place is Hell,
Licking dust from your chin.

You sought me not,
though I gave you life.
Now make your way to
eternal strife.

Look in the mirror,
my words of truth,
Reveal the horror
of your misspent youth.

You hardened your heart,
growing ugly inside;
your grotesque appearance,
No longer can hide.

Join the damned,
Licking wounds for your thirst!!
Wretched being,
now listen first.

I gave you a chance-
Tenfold and more,
But you wouldn’t listen-
Just chose to ignore.

I sent you a beggar,
with his hand out for food,
but you spit in his face
and treated him rude.

So, I sent you a preacher to
share the good news,
but you slammed the door
and said I refuse!

Then I sent you a child
to tug at your heart;
you couldn’t be bothered,
so you tore him apart!!

I gave you a dream
a nightmare of Hell;
you just rolled over.
Refusing to yell.

I came as your Savior,
and said, ‘friend prepare’
And then you did it-
You said, ‘I don’t care!’

Now the end is here;
you’ve had your chance,
Reflect on your life-
Here it is in a glance.

You see! You’re guilty!
Just yourself to blame!
But you could’ve avoided
the eternal flame!

No one is perfect-
Least of all you;
If only you cared,
that I died for you.

Rom 3:10 “For there are none good, no, not one.”

The beauty is that our God did not leave us to the results of our sin or eternal loss.

 

He….

 

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son,
that whosoever believes on Him, should not perish, but have life everlasting.”

A Person may go to Heaven without…

A Person may go to Heaven without……

  • Without health,
  • Without wealth;
  • Without fame,
  • Without a great name;
  • Without learning,
  • Without earnings;
  • Without culture,
  • Without beauty;
  • Without friends and without ten thousand other things—–
  • But he can NEVER go to Heaven without Christ.

Sadly many Churches teach that salvation is through a series of works and by affiliation with their church or they teach you get there by Jesus plus works. Don’t you find it interesting that there are no denominations noted in scripture? But in God’s word to us the Bible it is crystal clear what is the way to heaven and anything added to Jesus alone being the only way is not the Gospel of the one and only true God.

The first question this morning for you is, do you know what the church you are attending teaches about how to get to heaven?

Here is what Jesus teaches;

John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

John 3:3 “Jesus answered and said unto him, except a man be born again he cannot enter the Kingdom of God.”

Titus 3:4,5 “But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, NOT BY WORKS of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit.”

Eph 2:8,9 “For by grace are you saved through faith and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, NOT OF WORKS, lest anyone would boast.”

 

Yes, it is a very narrow view and our world will see you as …….but if it is God’s truth then it can never be wrong and will never change! Don’t be found to be like…..

 

Mat 7:21-23 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘In ever knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’”

 

John 6:29 “Jesus answered and said unto them, this is the work of God, that you believe on him whom he hath sent.”

The Risk Takers Creed…

James 2:17 “Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, it is dead.”

The Risk Takers Creed…

  • To laugh is to risk appearing the fool.
  • To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
  • To reach out for another is to risk involvement.
  • To expose feeling is to risk exposing your true self.
  • To place your ideas, your dreams before the crowd, is to risk their loss.
  • To love is to risk not being loved in return.
  • To live is to risk dying.
  • To hope is to risk despair.
  • To try is to risk failure.

But risks must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.

The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, and is nothing. He or she may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he/she simply cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love… live.

Chained by his or her attitudes, he or she is a slave, He or she forfeited freedom, and only a person who risks is free!!!

So how about taking a risk today?

Romans 12:1-2 ” I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

Always say a Prayer…A.S.A.P.

I Thes 5:16-18 “Rejoice always, PRAY WITHOUT CEASING, in everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you”.

Always say a Prayer…A.S.A.P.

Ever wonder about the abbreviation A.S.A.P.? Generally we think of
it in terms of even more hurry and stress in our lives. Maybe if we
think of this abbreviation in a different manner, we will begin to find
a new way to deal with those rough days along the way.

There’s work to do, deadlines to meet;
You’ve got no time to spare,
But as you hurry and scurry-
ASAP – ALWAYS SAY A PRAYER

In the midst of family chaos,
“Quality time” is rare.
Do your best; let God do the rest-
ASAP – ALWAYS SAY A PRAYER.
It may seem like your worries
are more than you can bear.
Slow down and take a breather-
ASAP – ALWAYS SAY A PRAYER

God knows how stressful life is;
He wants to ease our cares,
And He’ll respond to all your needs
A.S.A.P. – ALWAYS SAY A PRAYER.

Today I’m saying a little prayer that
GOD will smile on you and send
you all the special blessings you
deserve. ASAP!

I Thes 5:17 “Rejoice always, PRAY WITHOUT CEASING”