Abraham Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation…

I Thes 5:16-18 “Rejoice evermore, Pray without ceasing,
In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in
Christ Jesus concerning you.”

Abraham Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation…

Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 Thanksgiving Proclamation created a reference point for a country in the midst of civil war and urged citizens to pause and give thanks for its blessings. That proclamation continues to serve us well during times of uncertainty. It concludes like this:

“I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November as a day of a Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.

And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascription’s justly due to Him for such singular deliverance’s and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony and tranquility and Union.”

Psalm 118:1 “O give thanks unto the Lord for He is good;
because His mercy endures forever.”

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Differing Definitions – Bible vs World…

Differing Definitions – Bible vs World

Do you ever wonder why so many biblical definitions differ from those that our world thinks are correct and teaches? The answer comes from the biblical truth of who is the god of this world for a moment in time and what his objectives are. Listen as the One True God reminds us of why our world is so messed up.

II Cor 4:3,4 But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.

Isa 14:12-14 “How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, you who weakened the nations! For you have said in your heart: ‘I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation on the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.’

So now you see that the one messing up our world is satan and his philosophies. That explains a lot about the philosophies of our world and most of its leaders. It also explains why we see the garbage on TV and hear the garbage from our communications giants that we do. Our enemy, the god of this world for a moment in time, is actively working to train our minds to feel that sin is normal and ok. One way he does that is to create different definitions for words having importance to our understanding of God and His eternal values. The following are some of the many definitions that we need to search the scriptures about to identify their true and never changing meaning.

  • Christian
    • From our Worlds Dictionaries;
      • one who professes belief in the teachings of JesusChrist based on or conforming with Christianity <Christianethics>
      • of, relating to, or being a Christian <Christian responsibilities>
      • professing Christianity <a Christianaffirmation> <a Christian country >
    • May I add that the greater emphasis of our world is on belonging to a Church organization that has the name of Jesus in it. Be very careful with that one. Many churches having the name of Jesus in them do not truly believe what Jesus said and the reason He came to this earth. Reference the ‘Born Again’ definition issue. Those churches teach Jesus plus works to be ‘born again’. If that were the case, then Jesus died in vain because His sacrifice for our sins was not adequate.
      • Gal 2:16-21  “knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified. But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is Christ therefore a minister of sin? Certainly not! For if I build again those things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God. 20I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.”
    • God’s word gives us the truth that any person placing their faith in Jesus alone for their salvation is a CHRISTian. See ‘Born Again’ definition in scripture.
      • Acts 11:26 1st called Christians.
      • John 3:3 You must be ‘born again’ to be a biblical Christian.
    • Saint
      • From our Worlds Dictionaries;
        • Holy person. In the New Testament, The Apostle Paulused the term to mean a member of the Christian community, but the term more commonly refers to those noted for their holiness and venerated during their lifetimes or after death. In some churchs, saints are publicly recognized by the church and are considered intercessors with God for the living. They are honored on special feast days, and their remains and personal effects are venerated as relics. Often Christian saints perform miracles in their lifetime, or miracles occur in their names after their death. In Islam, wali (“friend of God”) is often translated as saint; in Buddhism, arhats and bodhisattvas are roughly equivalent to saints. Hindu sadhus are somewhat similar. See also canonization.
      • So, you see from the dictionaries of our world that these are spiritually special people having given their life to serving or to martyrdom. Only a few obtain the status and it is obtained via a church proclamation. They become mediators between God and mankind.
      • God says that saints are all those who have accepted Jesus as their Savior or all of those who are ‘Born Again’. Yes, I am a saint using God’s definition even if some around me fail to see it. See the beginning chapter of many of the Epistles in scripture that announce they have been written to the saints. Not one or two people but the whole church at that location. While reading the Epistles it is obvious that they are written to those believing in Jesus and not just to a select group of special Christians. The scriptures are not talking about a select group of persons but to all those who have placed their faith in Jesus. Noted below is just one of the many examples you will find in scripture if you search for them.
        • Eph 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, To the saints who are in Ephesus, and faithful in Christ Jesus:
      • Mediator
        • From Worlds Dictionaries;
          • one that mediatesespecially:  one that mediates between parties at variance
          • Sin definitely causes a variance between us and God so there is no dispute there.
          • Many churches proclaim that their priests or Pastors are the Mediator between God and man which means the church laity go to the priest to have their sins forgiven.
        • Scripture notes there is only One Mediator between God and mankind;
          • I Tim 2:5 For there is one God, one mediator also between God and men, himself man, Christ Jesus,
          • Based on Jesus sacrifice for my sins I have the awesome privilege of approaching God through His Son Jesus directly without going through a human mediator.

 

  • Born Again
    • From Worlds Dictionaries;
      • of, relating to, or being a usually Christian person who has made a renewed or confirmed commitment of faith especially after an intense religious experience
      • having returned to or newly adopted an activity, a conviction, or a persona especially with a proselytizing zeal<a born–againconservative>
      • Origin ofBORN-AGAIN is from the verse “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God” (John 3:3–AV)
      • Webster’s did pretty good job on that one. In actuality our world’s definition of a Christian differs from God’s definition. The definition is again slanted by the enemy (satan the god of the world today) to suit his means. Just listen to those around you when the topic is brought up.
    • God’s definition of ‘born again’ is;
      • John 3:3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
      • Heb 9:22 According to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission. It took Jesus blood to cleanse us. We cannot provide that cleansing by any of our sacrifices or works.
      • John 14:6 “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
    • Angel
      • Let’s see, there are the little angels shooting arrows to create love. We see them as fluffy little beings that our world creates figurines of to place on our bookshelves, but scripture tells us a very different story.
      • The following are some biblical examples of angels;
        • Psalm 91:11 God gives His angels charge over us or sends them as protectors. There is no better health plan than that!
        • Daniel 6:22 God’s angels shut the mouths of the lions to protect Daniel and He can do the same today.
        • Daniel 12:1 Michael the arch angel will have the task of tossing satan out of heaven. Angels are warriors’ not fluffy little creatures.
        • Luke 1:26-35 An angel was sent to Mary to help her to be not afraid and to understand what a great blessing to our world God was doing.
        • Revelation 1:1 God sent an Angel to tell John what will happen to our world during the tribulation period and what to record so we have God’s truths.
        • Acts 27:21-25 An Angel appeared to Paul and told him not to be afraid of the storm that threatened his life and lives of those aboard the boat he was on while being sent to a Roman prison where he was appointed by God to be a witness for Him.
        • I Chron 21:15 God sent one of His angels to destroy Jerusalem and stopped the angel from totally doing so. It was as a judgment because of the unfaithfulness of God’s people. One angel is as strong as an army.

 

So, what have we learned from this exercise? Do not take my word for it. The only truth or teaching you should trust totally are those absolutes that come from God. To find truth you must;

  • 2 Tim 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth
  • Acts 17:10, 11 “Then the brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea. When they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.“
  • John 3:3 “Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Do you consider yourself a Strong CHRISTian…

Do you consider yourself a Strong CHRISTian

Do you consider yourself a strong CHRISTian this morning? First and foremost is the fact that if you are a Christian you cannot be strong without His strength (Phil 4:13). Real Christian strength acts in a way that our flesh never would. It acts like the following young men did when confronted with evil. Having that strength does require faith.

Without faith it is impossible to please God!! Three young believers were required to bow down and worship a god other than their God. Remember a worldly or fleshly god that controls your life can be anything taking God’s rightful place in your life. They can be money, sex, self or again anything you focus and worship more than God. Let’s see how they responded and how God protected them when their faith won out.

Dan 3:16-18 “Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego replied to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to give you an answer concerning this matter. If it be so, our God whom we
serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out
of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we
are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

When you live by faith you never walk alone!

Dan 3:23-25 “But these three men, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, fell into the midst of the furnace of blazing fire still tied up. Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astounded
and stood up in haste; he said to his high officials, was it not three men we cast
bound into the midst of the fire? They replied to the king, certainly O king.
He said, Look! I see four men loosed and walking about in the midst of the fire
without harm, and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods!”

Walking by faith will touch the unsaved world around you!

Dan 3:28 “Nebuchadnezzar responded and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, Who has sent His angel and delivered His servants who put their trust in Him, violating the king’s command and yielded up their bodies so as not to serve or worship any god except their own God.”

Remember the fleshly god of money, hobbies, people, health, sex, etc. only seek to serve your flesh or yourself. They become gods in my life when they become my primary goal and focus. These young men had One focus, and it was not on their own personal well-being. Anything that takes your number One priority in place of Jesus being number One in your life leads to spiritual bankruptcy.

So how is your strength this morning or should I say from where does your strength come from this morning?

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.”

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”

The Secret to a Happy Marriage…

Gen 2:24 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be jointed to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.”

The Secret of a Happy Marriage…

There was once a man and woman who had been married for more than 60 years. They had shared everything. They had talked about everything. They had kept no secrets from each other except that the little old woman had a shoe box in the top of her closet that she had cautioned her husband never to open or ask her about.

For all of these years, he had never thought about the box, but one day, the little old woman got very sick and the doctor said she would not recover. In trying to sort out their affairs, the little old man took down the shoe box and took it to his wife’s bedside. She agreed that it was time that he should know what was in the box.

When he opened it, he found two crocheted doilies and a stack of money totaling $25,000. He asked her about the contents. “When we were to be married,” she said, “my grandmother told me the secret of a happy marriage was to never argue. She told me that if I ever got angry with you I should just keep quiet and crochet a doily.”

The little old man was so moved he had to fight back tears. Only two precious doilies were in the box. She had only been angry with him two times in all those years of living and loving. He almost burst with happiness.

“Honey,” he said, “that explains the doilies, but what about all of this money? Where did it come from?”

“Oh,” she said, “That’s the money I made from selling the doilies.”

Eph 4:26 “Be angry, and do not sin, do not let the sun do down on your wrath.”