Archive for the ‘Critics’ Category
She Couldn’t Stop Crying!
Mary held her scarf in place as she tearfully ran to her brother’s house. She couldn’t stop crying. All of her dreams had just crumbled into a horrible nightmare. This was the worst day of her life.
She had been a woman scorned by polite society all of her life. Most of the married women who knew her, worried about her influence on their husbands.
But for the last several years now, she had been a changed woman; transformed and forgiven by the one who is called Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of God.
But now her Lord was dead. The only One who had ever given her hope had just been killed.
She ran almost blindly, down the darkening narrow street, nearly bumping into strangers. Her eyes focused on her brother’s house. Her pace quickened. Neighbors looked at Mary and then at each other in wonder, not knowing whether to be concerned for Mary or alarmed about something else. why was she running?
She didn’t bother knocking when she got to the door. Mary only slowed her pace slightly as she shoved the door open.
“They’ve killed Him!” She said breathlessly to the startled faces in the room.
“Killed him? Killed who?” Mary’s brother, Nathan asked as he sprang to his feet.
“Jesus. They’ve just crucified Jesus! The soldiers did it. I was there and I saw everything!”
Mary sank into a nearby chair and allowed the floodgate that held back her emotions to open up. Tears flowed afresh.
Nathan looked at his wife Elizabeth not knowing how to respond. They both were happy to see the changes in Mary’s life, but they were still unsure that her attachment to this Jesus person and His Disciples was a good thing for them.
“I thought your Jesus was going to overthrow the Romans and make himself king if he could get enough followers,” Nathan said trying to make a point.
“You should have seen him.” Mary said, ignoring her brother’s remark. “After they had beaten him till his back was bloody, and could hardly stand, they wove a thorn-bush into a crown and then they placed it on his head smashing it down hard. It made me sick.
“Those cruel heathen soldiers showed how heartless they were as they stripped his robe from him just to shame him publicly. I saw them as they gambled to see who got his clothes.”
Mary stopped to wipe her eyes again.
“Then they forced him to a cross they had on the ground and while they held him in place, the soldiers drove big nails into his hands and feet. Blood ran everywhere. But He never winced or changed his expression.
“I couldn’t take my eyes off of him as the soldiers lifted up the cross and let it drop down hard into the hole they had dug. It made a sickening thud, and his body shook hard. Then more blood started running down his hands, arms and back.
“Horrible people in the crowd starting cheering and saying mean things to him. Jesus looked at the soldiers and at the cheering crowd and said, ‘Father forgive them for they know not what they do.’
“Can you imagine that?”
Nathan and Elizabeth shook their heads no. They both then as if on cue, found a place to sit down as they listened to more of Mary’s story.
“What did the crowd say to that?” Elizabeth asked.
“They just kept on mocking and laughing at him. Some of his Disciples were standing close to his mother, Mary.
“Some of his disciples? They weren’t all there?” Nathan asked with a deep furrow in his brow.
“I looked very carefully, but I couldn’t find Judas or Peter anywhere. I was very surprised that Peter was missing. If he was there, I couldn’t see him.” Mary continued.
“There were three big groups there today. There were his followers that were weeping, there was a bigger crowd of those that hated him and just mocked him. Then there were those that just stood on the sidelines and watched. They showed no emotion either way. It was as if they came for the entertainment. They just didn’t care.
“What happened next?” Nathan asked.
“He said he was thirsty, and a soldier tried to give him some vinegar to drink. He also said something like, ‘My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?’
“Then he said to John that he wanted him to take care of their mother. He said some other things I can’t remember right now just before he closed his eyes. When he did close his eyes, it wasn’t long before his just head slumped over.
“The soldiers started breaking the legs on the others that were crucified, to make sure they were dead, but when they came to Jesus, they saw he was already dead so they stuck a spear in his side. Blood and water gushed down his body and dripped on the ground. Blood and water!
“I turned then and ran here as fast as I could. I couldn’t bear to see anymore.”
With that, Mary sprang to her feet and looked about the darkening room in alarm.
“It’s only the middle of the day and it’s dark outside already! ”Mary said as she ran to the window. “I can see that the chickens are getting up on the roost. What is happening?
Elizabeth screamed and reached for her husband as the ground began to shake violently. The dishes and furniture shook very hard. The floor moved hard up and down and the walls trembled.
Cries of alarm came from homes nearby. Cracks began to show in the walls of their houses while dried dirt fell from the ceilings. Then as it had begun, earthquake was quickly over.
“These are signs! Mary said as she faced her brother and sister-in-law. “These are signs from God! They have killed the Lord’s Anointed, the Messiah, and even nature is upset.”
The three stood close together unsure of what would happen next. They heard noises in the street and a man was talking very loud and very fast. Nathan went outside to see what the commotion was about. A few minutes later he came back inside. His face was ashen and his hands were shaking.
“What’s the matter?” Mary wanted to know.
“Rueben, the Levite said that he’d just come from the Temple and that the Veil protecting the Holiest of Holies ripped all by itself. It ripped right in the middle, from the top clear down to the bottom without anyone touching it!
“The High Priest, you know, is only allowed to go in to the Mercy Seat once a year, but now the Veil has been torn. Everyone can see in there.
“The High Priest and the Levites are all scared; they ran from the Temple not knowing what they should do. They were afraid of God’s judgment on them for seeing into the Holiest of Holies. There is nothing in the Law about how to correct this problem.
“Two more things. Reuben said that some big rocks that he has seen in the same place for years, now are all broken in half. and no one split them.
And number two, he said he saw some graves of the old saints were opened up and no one was in them.”
Nathan sat down while Elizabeth and Mary lighted a few lamps.
“Nathan, I know you haven’t been a follower of Jesus like I have. But you know the difference and the change that he made in my life. I’m not the same person anymore. You know that. You can see that. Everyone in town that knew me before can see that.
Mary started crying again remembering the moment she had knelt at the feet of Jesus in Simon’s house. She had held his feet and cried tears of repentance. She hadn’t any towel to wipe the tears away, so she had dried his feet with her hair. Then she had taken perfume, worth a whole years wages, and poured it on his feet.
“I am so ashamed of my past, but He forgave me and gave me hope.
Nathan and Elizabeth both nodded.
“If that is not enough, the sun went down just now and it got dark at noonday, there was a great earthquake shook everything. The Temple Veil tore in half by the Hand of God! From the top of the Veil… where man can’t even reach. You know those things are not a coincidence! This is a God thing.”
“I’m scared.” Elizabeth said, as she looked first at Nathan then at Mary. “Why don’t you stay here with us a couple of nights so we can talk? I want to know more about your Jesus.”
Mary thanked her and looked at her brother, he nodded his approval. The three talked about the days events for a while longer before going to bed.
Even after Mary had been in bed for a long time, her mind wouldn’t shut down. Then it came to her. She just could not let Jesus lay in some tomb without any ointment and spices. She knew no on had taken the time to wash the blood from his body either. That was the least she could do.
Tomorrow she would make plans and find where to get the necessary spices, ointments and perfumes she would need.
The next morning Mary announced to Elizabeth what she wanted to do and they went shopping for the special perfume and ointment ingredients.
The buzz everywhere was about the crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth, the sun going down early, the earthquake and the torn Temple Veil.
Elizabeth wondered aloud to Mary if she thought the followers of Jesus would be safe now. They had killed Jesus. What would they do to his believers?
At home that night, the special ointments, oils and spices were mixed together. A special cloth had been purchased as well.
Early Sunday morning before daylight, Mary slipped out of the house and headed for the Tomb that she had heard he had been buried in. Her arms were full with the necessary items for an honorable burial. It was the least she could do.
But when Mary got to the tomb, she was in for the greatest shock of her life! She arrived at the tomb while it was still dark. Yet, she could see the protective stone had been rolled away. The tomb was empty!
Mary was overwhelmed with emotion, in shock she turned and started running, not quite sure where. In the darkness she ran and nearly bumped into Peter and John.
“The tomb is empty, they have taken him away,” she said breathlessly!
The men ran to the tomb. They had to see for themselves. When they saw it was empty, hope died in their souls and they turned and slowly went home.
But Mary just stood there. She could leave. She couldn’t stop crying. She finally got brave enough to look again into the empty tomb. It was getting a little lighter by now.
As she stooped down and looked into the empty tomb, she saw two angels sitting there. One sat at the head and one at the feet of where Jesus had lain.
Woman, why are you crying?” The Angels wanted to know.
“Because they have taken my Lord away and I don’t know where they’ve taken him.”
Mary turned around with fresh tears in her eyes and saw Jesus, whom she guessed was probably the Gardener.
“Why are you crying woman?” He asked.
Jesus spoke her name in that familiar voice.
There was something in the way he spoke her name.
- It was the same voice that had spoken forgiveness to her when she was a sinner.
- It was the same voice that had spoken healings and miracles to the multitudes.
- If she knew any voice in the world, she knew that voice.
She wiped the tears away enough to see him better.
“Rabboni!” She said. (Which is another word for Master.)
Her first reaction was the desire to throw her arms around him and never let him go. Jesus knew that, and simple said…
“Do not touch me, for I have not yet be glorified. Just go to my brethren, and tell them that I am alive. I have risen!”
- That is exactly what Mary did.
- Seeing Jesus turned her tears into joy.
- This is what Jesus is still doing.
- Let Him turn your sorrow into joy today!
It’s what the hope of the Resurrection is all about!
Celebrate Easter this Sunday by Receiving the Holy Ghost, the power of the Resurrection.
If you do… You too will rise again!
John Chapter 20
The Empty Tomb
1 The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre.
Mary Find Peter And John
2 Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him.
3 Peter therefore went forth, and that other disciple, and came to the sepulchre.
4 So they ran both together: and the other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre.
5 And he stooping down, and looking in, saw the linen clothes lying; yet went he not in.
6 Then cometh Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulchre, and seeth the linen clothes lie,
7 And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself.
8 Then went in also that other disciple, which came first to the sepulchre, and he saw, and believed.
9 For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead.
10 Then the disciples went away again unto their own home.
Mary Can’t Stop Crying
11 But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre,
12 And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.
13 And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.
Mary Meets Jesus And Doesn’t Recognize Him
14 And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus.
15 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.
16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.
Mary Sent To Tell The Apostles
17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.
18 Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her.
Jesus Among His Disciples
19 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.
20 And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.
21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.
22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:
23 Whose so ever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose so ever sins ye retain, they are retained.
24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.
25 The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.
26 And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.
27 Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.
28 And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.
29 Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.
30 And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: 31 But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.
Are Apostolics Happy Their Pastors Ignore Some New Testament Scriptures?
Apostolics by nature should be firm believers in “coming out from among them” and being separated from the world, and unto Christ. Yet, Christian approved sins may number more than we might first think. There is also a crowd that would ignore Biblical cautions and warnings because in their mind, that was only a guideline, not an actual sin.
It is our understanding that Holiness in both inward and outward. I find it safe to also say that what is on the inside will soon show on the outside.
We sometimes hear the subject of modesty talked about behind the pulpit. We also have many new choruses about God being a holy God. Yet, if we made a list of things we are comfortable not hearing about, it just might include a few of these New Testament Scriptures. There just too many to post here.
Heb 12:15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;
- Bitterness (Holding a Grudge)
- Wrath, Anger
- Clamour (A Big Outcry)
- Throwing Fits
- Evil Speaking (Criticism)
Eph 4:32 And be ye kind one to another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
- Be Tenderhearted
- Forgiving one another
1 Tim 5:13 And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not.
1 Tim 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
- Love of Money (Includes putting job before church?)
- Coveting To Be Rich
1 Tim 6:4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,
- Envy (Jealousy)
- Railings (Words of Criticism)
- Evil Surmisings (Imagining the Worst about someone)
1 Tim 6:5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
- Getting Caught Up In Twisted Doctrines And Beliefs
- Costly Array
- Modest Clothing
Heb 13:17 Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.
- Obey (The Pastor)
- Submit Yourselves (One may obey without submitting, but it is impossible to submit without obeying.)
1 Tim 6:17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;
- High mindedness
2 Pet 2:10 But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.
2 Pet 2:11 Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord.
- Lust of Uncleanness
- Despise Governments (Don’t want to be told what to do.)
- Not Afraid to speak evil of dignitaries (Especially means your pastor)
- Railing Accusations
- Speaking evil of things they don’t understand.
- Walking after their own lust (Doing whatever they want)
1 Pet 2:11 Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;
- Fleshly lusts
- Emotional Adultery
2 Tim 2:22 Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.
- Flee Youthful lusts (If it includes more than the sensual, could it also include sports?)
2 Tim 2:23 But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes.
- Avoid Foolish and Stupid Questions (They just start fights)
1 Cor 11:14 Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?
1 Cor 11:15 But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering.
- Men – Get A Haircut.
- Women – Don’t Ever Cut It
Matt 5:41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
- Don’t Do The Minimum
- Love The Neighbor (Neighboring Countries Too?)
Matt 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
- Love Your Enemies
- Bless Them That Curse You
- Do Good Things To Them That Hate You
- Pray For Them That Are Unkind To You
1 Jn 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
1 Jn 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
- Love Not The World
- Love Not The Things In The World
- Lust of the Flesh
- Lust of the Eyes
- Pride Of Life
Jas 4:10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
Jas 4:11 Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge.
- Speaking Evil And Unkind Things Of One Another
1 Tim 5:19 Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.
- At Least Two (or Three) Witnesses Needed Before Accusing An Elder.
1 Tim 5:20 Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.
- Saints That Sin Should Be Rebuked In Church?
Jas 4:15 For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.
- Not Saying, “If The Lord Wills)
Jas 4:17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.
- Ignoring The Word
Jas 1:26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.
- Not Watching What You Say
- Visit The Sick Orphans And Widows
- Keep Yourself Unspotted (Unaffected by) The World
Rom 1:24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:
Rom 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
Rom 1:26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
Rom 1:27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet.
Rom 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
Rom 1:29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
Rom 1:30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
Rom 1:32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
- Surely This Doesn’t Need To Be Explained Further
2 Tim 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
2 Tim 3:17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
- There’s A Reason For Every Scripture In The Bible.
- Don’t Ignore
- Don’t Pick And Choose.
Acts 20:26 Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men.
Acts 20:27 For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.
- Peter Wasn’t Afraid To Say What Needed To Be Said
- May God Help Us All
“I’m Sick And Tired Of You Judging Me!”
How many times have we heard someone say that, whether it was directed to us or to someone else? It’s easy for most of us to get offended when others express disapproval of our actions.
By nature, most of us are very private. We resent outsiders intruding uninvited into our personal lives. We automatically throw up a defensive barrier. Somewhere in all of us there is a storage room that houses cryptic phrases designed for rebuttal and justification. We quickly grab one and use it with the hopes of silencing our accuser. Sometimes, it works.
Most church members and ex-church member alike consider the act of judging a grievous fault. So, since most of us have been judged at one time or another, let us look at the subject of judging others.
As citizens, we are used to being judged every day on our skills, behavior, and performance.
Judgment Is Common In Every Day Society
- Television shows, such as American Idol, judge contestants on their ability to sing and perform.
- At the County Fair, someone will judge which pie is the best.
- There are judges at dog shows, and the dollar value of someone’s beloved pet may be at their mercy.
- When a prospective new driver turns 16 years old, his or her driving ability is judged. Someone must determine if they should be issued a driver’s license.
- To be promoted to the next grade and even graduate, a teacher must determine the student’s academic ability.
- To become a licensed minister in an organization. An applicant’s worthiness is determined when he appears before a licensing board.
- Every new pastor that is voted on by the church has his qualifications judged by the congregation’s yes or no vote. The same holds true for politicians.
- The Bank Officer judges the applicants credit rating and payment history before loaning any money.
- The Miss America beauty pageant uses Judges to determine who should represent the U.S.A.
- There are multitudes of judges for every Olympic event.
- The gardener judges whether or not the tree’s branches need pruned, or if the tomatoes need watered.
- Someone will be a judge over who gets custody of the child, and who gets what, in the divorce settlement.
- The Traffic Cop judges whether or not you should be pulled over and cited.
- Every employee knows the meaning of a “Performance Review.” Someone must sit on the other side of the desk and judge the employees worthiness.
- Actually, everyone that wants the bragging rights of being the best, the fastest, or the most gifted, must first meet the judge.
We seem to be comfortable with the idea of being judged according to our fleshly activities. We understand that no one receives approval without a judgment of some kind. However, it’s man’s judgment of our spiritual pursuits, or lack thereof, that brings the fire into our reactions.
1: to form an opinion about through careful weighing of evidence and testing of premises.
You’re Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You? I Understand. Let’s Look At The Subject Of Judging In The Bible.
Is it true that Christians are told not to judge? The surprise answer is no. In fact, according to Scripture those who do not judge are more likely to be led astray by false doctrines and are less than effective witnesses for Jesus Christ.
Most People Who Cite The Lord’s “Command” Not To Judge, Use Following Quotation:
Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
Matthew 7:2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
Matthew 7:3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
Matthew 7:4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
Matthew 7:5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.
To Whom Were These Words Spoken?
This whole passage is addressed to the religious hypocrites of the day. Jesus warned these self-righteous people who criticized others, but were guilty of the same things… or worse.
You’re Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You? As Much As Our Flesh Doesn’t Like It, Church Members Must Make Judgments.
Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
Matthew 7:16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
- False prophets are to be recognized (judged) by their fruits.
Should Christians Judge Each Other? Absolutely!
The Lord is pleased with those that judge righteously.
John 7:24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.
Some Lukewarm Church Members Feel That A Preacher Should Not Be Their Judge.
I would point them the Lord’s instruction to the Priest Joshua.
Zechariah 3:7 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; If thou wilt walk in my ways, and if thou wilt keep my charge, then thou shalt also judge my house, and shalt also keep my courts, and I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by.
Remember John The Baptist saying:
Matthew 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Mark 6:17 For Herod himself had sent forth and laid hold upon John, and bound him in prison for Herodias’ sake, his brother Philip’s wife: for he had married her.
Mark 6:18 For John had said unto Herod, It is not lawful for thee to have thy brother’s wife.
- John had guts enough to tell King Herod that he was wrong, that he was living with his brother’s wife. Herod had John thrown in prison and finally beheaded. John was not afraid to make a righteous judgment.
The Prophet Nathan Looked King David In The Eye And Judged Him.
2 Samuel 12:7 And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul;
There Has Always Been Resentment In The Congregation Against Messages That Judge.
Isaiah 30:10 Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits:
- Even in the days of Isaiah, men wanted to be left alone by the man of God. They only were willing to hear smooth preaching. Not much has changed. They wanted to do what ever their conscience allowed them to do.
Judges 21:25 In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
- Without accountability, even the people of God sink to this level. The shocking news for our flesh is that what is right in our eyes may not be right in God’s eyes. We all need help. We just need it in different areas.
What About Discernment Of Spirits?
1 Corinthians 12:10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:
- This is a gift that God provided for His body, whereby Holy Ghost filled people may be able to determine what spirit another is manifesting. In a way, it’s like being able to see what’s on the inside of another person.
Try The Spirits. (Judge Them)
1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
The Prophet learned about judging spirits the hard way. He found out quickly that God looked not only on the outside, like humans, but He looked especially at the heart.
1 Samuel 16:7 But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.
(Note: They that are spiritually wayward love to justify their carnal and maybe even sinful outward appearance by saying that God looks on the heart. (As if that were the only place He looks.) This passage strongly makes the point that God did not even like what he saw on the inside. Maybe the self-righteous should not use this verse as their defense.)
If You’re Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You, Be Glad You Weren’t There When The Apostle Paul Preached.
Paul Judged Situations Publically Without Being Present.
- Case 1. Immorality
1 Corinthians 5:3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,
1 Corinthians 5:4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,
1 Corinthians 5:5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.
1 Corinthians 5:11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.
- That person’s lifestyle resulted in the church judging them guilty and calling them by the name of their sin.
1 Corinthians 5:12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within?
1 Corinthians 5:13 But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.
- Case 2. Church Factions During The Lord’s Supper
1 Corinthians 11:17 Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse.
1 Corinthians 11:18 For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.
- Paul Openly Judged Sensitive Situations.
Judgment Is Required Of All Spiritual People.
1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
1 Corinthians 2:15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
(The Message) 1 Corinthians 2:15 Spiritually alive, we have access to everything God’s Spirit is doing, and can’t be judged by unspiritual critics.
Spirit Filled Saints Are To Judge All Things.
Godly Spirit-filled saints are required to judge all things. Judge spirits? Yes! Judge things as well? Absolutely!
We Are To Judge All Things By God’s Standard Of Judgment. Things Such As:
- Life Situations
- Internet Activities
- Hollywood Presentations
- False Doctrines
- Styles of Dress
Just To Name A Few
(Note: EVERYONE that I have seen who re-evaluated their Holiness Standards or Convictions has not grown closer to God or resembled the Old-time Pentecostal lifestyle, but rather moved closer to looking and acting like the present world.)
The Apostles Judged A Situation Correctly And The Holy Ghost Confirmed It.
Acts 15:28 For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;
Paul Wasn’t Afraid To Have His Brethren Weigh His Words.
1 Corinthians 10:14 Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry.
1 Corinthians 10:15 I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say.
You’re Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You? I Understand, But Even Prophets Are Subject To Being Judged.
Prophets Judge Other Prophets.
A Prophet’s reward is not money or fame. It is simply that his prophecy comes true. If the prophecy does not come true he is, by all standards of measurement, a false prophet.
1 Corinthians 14:29 Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge.
The Pastor Must Make Judgment Calls.
Some situations a Pastor has to deal with are not mentioned specifically by name in the Bible. So, he must make a judgment call, or a ruling. Hence, they that make good rulings are worthy of double honor.
1 Timothy 5:17 Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine.
There’s No Doubt A Good Reason Why Some Make A Loud Noise About Not Wanting Anyone To Judge Them.
Maybe They Are In Rebellion And Don’t Want To Change.
- Because they are not doing right, and they do not want anyone reminding them.
- They know what they have been taught.
- They remember how they used to live.
- They chose to ignore the Word of God and the Pastor.
God Has Turned Them Over To A Delusion.
- They feel they are right and will debate you tirelessly in their attempt to justify themselves.
- They feel saved and content even though they have never been farther away from Truth.
- They wouldn’t love Truth, so God handpicked their delusion and gave them something they would love. Error.
A Humble Heart Will Repent When Judged And Correct Their Error.
2 Timothy 2:25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;
Preacher… Preach The Word. It Is God’s Plumb Line.
- Preach Without Fear or Favor.
- Be Not Afraid Of Their Faces.
- You Must Answer To God For What You Preached And Didn’t Preach.
- Preach It Even if It Affects Your Friends Or Family.
- Preach it Because It Is Truth.
Correction Must Be Given When The Actions Of A Saint Are Judged To Be Wrong.
1 Timothy 5:20 Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.
Luke 17:3 Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.
2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine.
Titus 1:13 This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;
Titus 2:15 These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.
If We Willingly Receive Correction and Instruction, We Show Evidence Of Being God’s Son.
Hebrews 12:5 … My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:
Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Hebrews 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
Hebrews 12:8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.
Hebrews 12:9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?
If You’re Still Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You…
- How Then Can Anyone Help You?
- You Don’t Want A Pastor.
- You Don’t Even Want A True Friend.
- You Choose To Do What You Want.
- No One Can Be Helped Without First Being Judged To Be In Need Of Help.
- Please Don’t Put Up A Wall Of Defense Any More When Your Life Is Judged To Be Not Pleasing Unto God.
You’re Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You?
- A Tender Hearted Person Would Never Speak Those Words.
- Have You Become Unteachable?
- Are You Past Help?
- Have You Become Hard Hearted?
- Do You Want A Tender Heart?
- Do You Want To Be Saved?
- Then Start By Humbling Yourself And Submitting To God’s Word.
Do You Own A Copy Of The Jefferson Bible?
Mr. Thomas Jefferson is rightly honored as one of the most brilliant minds in American history. He is remembered for many achievements in his public life and in his service to our nation.
- He served as Governor of Virginia.
- U.S. Minister to France.
- Secretary of State under President George Washington.
- Vice President in the administration of John Adams.
- President of The United States from 1801-1809.
His tombstone makes no mention of those accomplishments. It says rather, that he was the “author of the Declaration of American Independence, of the Statute of Virginia for religious freedom, and Father of the University of Virginia.”
What a man. What a mind. Yet, with all of his understanding, somehow Mr. Jefferson could not actually believe anything about the supernatural, or stories of miracles, as found in the Bible.
He loved the principles of life as taught by Jesus Christ. He approved of almost all of the Lord’s teachings. What he could not accept was anything supernatural. So, he did what he thought best. He made his own bible.
He calmly sat down with two exact Bibles, and began to cut out the parts that he liked. He would then paste all of the verses he liked into a scrapbook. Now, there would be nothing in his new bible that would make him uncomfortable.
Beliefnet Blog: Separating The ‘Diamonds’ From The ‘Dunghill’
“Done with his official work for the day, Thomas Jefferson sat in the new presidential mansion in Washington in 1804, and opened his Bible — not to pray, but to cut. He scoured the text for Jesus’ greatest teachings, sliced out his favorite portions and glued them into an empty volume. He called it “The Philosophy of Jesus.” In 1819, he started over and created a new version called “The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth,” often referred to now as The Jefferson Bible. In Jefferson’s version, Jesus was not divine.”
The virgin birth – gone.
Christ’s bodily resurrection – gone.
The miracles of the loaves, walking on water, raising Lazarus – none of them made Jefferson’s book.
The bad news is that the story doesn’t end there. Although Thomas Jefferson did that 200 years ago, almost everyone is doing it now. It happens in personal lives, homes, churches and denominations. Folks are only taking from the Bible, the parts they like best and they are leaving the rest on the table.
Even some Apostolic Pentecostals have problems in this area. Listen to the audience when the preacher preaches next time. Do they say amen or do they remain quiet? To the preacher, it would be easy to judge the silence of the congregation as non-acceptance. Maybe it is.
The Preacher Can Expect A Good Response If He Preaches On:
- Winning Souls
- Baptism In Jesus Name
- Receiving The Holy Ghost
- One God
- What happens if the same man preaches on Worldliness?
- What happens if he preaches against the ungodly influence of Hollywood?
- How loud is the sound of amen, when the pastor reads Bible passages about women Cutting their Hair?
- If he reads scriptures about not Loving the World, does the crowd get silent?
- Maybe, it’s when he reads the part about women not Wearing Men’s Apparel?
- Does the crowd grow silent when scriptures warning about Ornamentation are read?
- What about the subject of Tithes? Can they still say amen?
- How about when the preacher reads verses about Modest Apparel?
- What if he just reads verses about Doctrine, is anyone bored yet?
Let’s Talk Some More:
- What does the crowd do when the man of God reads verses on Forgiving One Another and Bitterness?
- Does is tense up when he reads about Gossip and Backbiters and Hatred?
- What do they do when he finds a verse about Jealousy and Envy?
- How about the verses on Submission and Pastoral Authority?
- What about when he reads verses on Loving your Neighbor as yourself, while preaching against Racism? What is the response then?
- What about the audience’s response when the pastor reads verses on Fornication and Adultery?
- What is the reaction when the pastor reads verses about Rebellion?
- How about the ones on Unity?
- When he reads verses about being Faithful to God’s House, what is the reaction of the crowd?
- Do they get uncomfortable when he reads the one about, “not setting any wicked thing before my eyes?’ How does that go over?
Pentecostals have openly talked about having their ‘candy sticks.’ As a rule, that’s a good thing. The downside is that some have taken only their candy sticks, and thrown most of the rest away. It’s kind of like swallowing a camel and straining a gnat.
- All some want to see in their Bible, are verses on Love.
- Others may only be in search of New Birth scriptures in their Bible.
- Then there are those that are only interested in Holiness subjects
- A few hang up on themes like: Faith, Healing, Miracles, Worship, Prophecy, Divorce, Pastoral Authority, and Prayer, to name a few.
Why not just take it all? Let no one be guilty of only taking the part of the Bible they like, and leaving the rest for others. I am convinced that the Jefferson Bible is alive and well in most Jesus Name Pentecostal churches today.
We easily break fellowship with those who have not cut out the same portions of the Bible that we have.
I submit to every gentle reader, that many are crippling their walk with God because they refuse to take the entire Bible. Do not treat God’s Word like a buffet line, and only choose what you like. Choose it all.
Do You Own A Copy Of The Jefferson Bible?
Professional Wine Connoisseurs Are In Your Church!
They’re a snobbish lot. Some, if not most, may consider themselves a marked cut above the general population.
After all, their sensory gifts are able to determine the “great” from the “mundane” or even from the “good.”
Some are so good, that just by tasting they can tell you the name of the wine and the year it was bottled.
They also run in very elite circles and hobnob with the movers and shakers in town. Good wines cost a lot of money. So it they aren’t blessed with the green stuff, they hang out with those that are.
From time to time in the upper-crust circles, wine tastings are hosted. Often, it is even a black tie event.
The connoisseurs know their stuff. They all know that judging the color is the first step in tasting wine.
There are five basic steps in tasting wine I am told: These are sometimes known as the “Five S” steps: see, swirl, sniff, sip, savor.
Then comes the scoring of the wine.
1. The appearance of the wine,
2. The nose or smell,
3. The palate or taste, and
After watching the wine tasters swirl the wine in the goblet, sniff the bouquet, sip it and then hold it momentarily in their mouth… they spit it out. That’s right.
There are even websites that boast that they can teach you how to spit wine like a pro.
Expectoration may have been the last thing some would have expected. But the connoisseur, the professional wine taster, chooses not to swallow. He is not here to drink. He has come to judge.
I suppose that in the secular world their logic makes sense. The problem is, that the same thing is being done in God’s House.
Who would have thought it? Of all the places wine tasters could have met, most of them seem to meet in our churches.
“What are they doing in our churches?”
“Why, they are wine tasting of course!”
“During the service?”
“During the preaching?”
“Why, that’s when they do it the most!”
They sit there listening.
They can’t afford to get inebriated like others around them.
They look at the color as they swish it around in their glass.
They sniff at the thought process of the sermon.
They take a sip of it and hold it in their mouth.
They are so gifted; they can identify in their mind the very vineyard it came from and the year it was bottled.
- Umm… that was “Worship 1977.”
- I think that was “Holiness 1962.”
- That was “Doctrine AD 34.”
- “New Birth, Day of Pentecost!”
Oh yes. They know it when they hear it.
Then they spit it out.
They hear the Word, but they refuse to apply it to themselves. They feel they are superior in doctrine, and quite possible in intelligence, to almost every one in the church. Including the pastor.
They’ve heard it all before. They know it all forwards and backwards. But if you think they are going to swallow what they hear in church today, “you got another think a coming.”
They’ve been spitting it out for years! They will keep spitting it out too, until they die. To change and start swallowing would draw too much attention. They would lose their place in the church as a ‘deep’ saint of God. they would also lose face.
Actually they are not deep at all. Anyone can spit. That doesn’t require a gift or ability. They are not connoisseurs of the preached Word of God. They are only critics.
The reason they spit it out is because they are truth rejecters. (While I am on the subject, it seems like God mentioned spewing some folks out of His mouth too.)
The greatest danger you can do to yourself is to hear the Word and not apply it to your own life. Receive it and prosper. Receive it and live. Reject it and die.
They didn’t spit it out when Peter preached to them on the Day of Pentecost!
Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
The only way to grow in God is to be a doer and not just a hearer.
James 1:23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:
James 1:24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
James 1:25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
So… What are you going to do the next time you hear preaching?
Spit it out, or receive it?
The Broken Finger Syndrome
A young brunette goes into the doctor’s office and says to the doctor that her body hurts wherever she touches it.
“That’s impossible,” the doctor says. “Show me.”
She takes her finger and pushes her on elbow and screams in pain. She pushes her knee and screams; she pushes her ankle and screams again. She touches her ear lobe and yells in pain.
The doctor sat there a minute observing his patients behavior and says, “Are you a natural blonde?”
“Why yes, she says, “I just recently died my hair brown.”
“I thought so,” the doctor says. “You have a broken finger.”
My good friend, Brother Kenneth Bow shared that joke with me. We both had a good laugh. He shared the fact with me too, that there are a lot of people with broken fingers. With apologies to him, let me explore this line of thinking a bit more.
Most Politicians Have “The Broken Finger Syndrome”
It seems that every administration blames the previous administration for all of its woes.
- High taxes
- The poor economy
The “Broken Finger Syndrome” Is Found In Every Community And Also In Every Church.
Those with this affliction find pain everywhere. Everything they touch seems to hurt them. They find pain in all of their relationships. They are easily recognized by their constant exclamations of pain.
We all have met those that stay upset about things in their local church. They constantly yell in pain about the leadership in the church.
The Pastor Hurts Me!
- He’s always preaching right at me.
- He doesn’t like me.
- He offended me.
- He corrected my child.
- He hurt me.
- I’m not being fed
- I’m not being used here.
- I’m leaving.
- (They constantly yell in pain about the pastor.)
The Worship Leader Hurts Me!
- The music style offends me.
- I can’t worship to the songs they use.
- It’s not my style
- I plug my ears because of the sound.
- (They constantly yell in pain about the worship leader.)
The Church Members Hurt Me!
- I don’t belong here!
- You’ll never believe what they did to me!
- I’m hurt because of them!
- They offended me!
- They’re bringing people into our church from the “Projects”.
- I don’t fit in!
- I have no friends here.
- I have more friends in the world than I do in church.
- They all hate me!
- They are all so critical.
- They are all so self righteous.
- Someone always keeps sitting in my pew.
- There is nothing here but cliques in this church.
- My children don’t get invited to the young people’s parties.
- I’m changing churches and getting away from all these hypocrites.
- (They constantly yell in pain about the members of their church.)
My In-laws Hurt Me!
- They never have loved me.
- They’re trying to control my life.
- They’re nosey.
- I can’t stand them.
- (They constantly yell in pain about their in-laws.)
My “Ex” Hurts Me!
- My “Ex” destroyed my life.
- My “Ex” tore down my self-esteem.
- My “Ex” is a psychopathic.
- He’s hiding money from me.
- (The constantly yell in pain about their “Ex”.)
My Parents Hurt Me!
- They physically abused me.
- They emotionally abused me.
- They were very controlling.
- (They constantly yell in pain about their parents.)
My Children Hurt Me
- My children drive me up a wall.
- I can’t stand them.
- (They constantly yell in pain about their children.)
The List Goes On And On…
If You Thought There Was A Problem Before…
Just Wait Till You Tell That Person They Have A Broken Finger!
As Sunday School children in the 1950’s ,we sang a little song that went like this:
It’s Me Oh Lord Standing In The Need Of Prayer
1. Not my father, not my mother, but it’s me, O Lord,
Standing in the need of prayer.
Not my sister, not my brother, but it’s me, O Lord,
Standing in the need of prayer.
2. Not the people that are shouting, but it’s me, O Lord,
Standing in the need of prayer.
Not the members I’ve been doubting, but it’s me, O Lord,
Standing in the need of prayer.
3. Not the preacher, not the sinner, but it’s me, O Lord,
Standing in the need of prayer.
Not the deacon, not the teacher, but it’s me, O Lord,
Standing in the need of prayer.
It’s me, it’s me, it’s me, O Lord,
Standing in the need of prayer.
It’s me, it’s me, it’s me, O Lord,
Standing in the need of prayer.
Don’t Cast Your Pearls Before Swine
Have you been trying to reason with Holiness haters lately?
Did you get surprised when they actually said, “I hate Holiness”?
Does It surprise you that they tell bold faced lies about you now?
Some of your old friends left the Message and went Charismatic? And now they post negative stuff about you on their Facebook page?
Former Apostolics been trashing you recently and saying horrible things about you and you have been unsure how to handle their hostility?
Here’s your Scripture for today.
Matt. 7:6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.
Give this Glorious Acts 2:38 Apostolic Message to a person Hungry for God! Give your Treasure of Truth to someone who will love it like you do. Even Jesus thought it was a waste of time to ‘talk’ to some folks.
(Have you ever seen an Apostate come back to Truth? Me either.)
This Gospel is too precious. Don’t waste your time on those that God is through with. They wouldn’t love the Truth. So God gave them something they would love… Delusion.
The Best Thing I Can Do For You Is To Love You.
Some people are easier to love than others. Occasionally we encounter those that are critical, abrasive and even harsh. It doesn’t feel good. They seem to resist any and all expressions of kindness and goodwill. Their spirit is such that it is tempting to put a great distance between them and us.
It is easy to love those that love us back. There is warmth and comfort in friendships like that. The two-way street of Friendship is an easy road to travel. We feel wanted and even needed among loving friends and family.
Many of our letters, text messages, emails and phone calls to friends and family end with the “I Love You” salutation. Most of us find that easy to say. Yet we would never dream of saying that to some people.
There are those that we meet and they take an immediate dislike for us. Maybe they are just having a bad day and we just happened to cross their paths. I don’t know.
Others seem to focus their sights on us on purpose and take great exceptions to everything we do or say. It feels like we will always be wrong as far as they are concerned.
Do not fall into the trap of fighting them back, or God forbid, hating them. Bitterness consumes everyone one that allows it access.
It does not feel good to be hated, rejected or criticized. None of us want to be mistreated, persecuted or despitefully used. It’s painful to have our good name attacked or our ideology trashed. That makes our carnal nature want to rise to the defense. Then the war begins.
Too many of us spend our life doing battle with our enemies. How long do we let a war go on? The story of the Hatfield’s and the McCoy’s family feud maybe legendary, but it does not need to be repeated.
May we make up our minds to love one another. May we truly love those in our home and in our church. But God’s will is for our love to extend past those walls and reach into the lives of our enemies. May we love those that refuse to love us.
Jesus told us that there is no special reward in loving those that love us back. But He did require that we love those that were our enemies. He asked us to love them that refused to love us back.
He told us that if we wish to be called His child, we were required:
- To Love Our Enemies.
- To Bless Our Enemies.
- To Do Good Things For Them.
- To Pray For Them.
Matt. 5:43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
Matt. 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
Matt. 5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
Matt. 5:46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
- Feed Him If He’s hungry
- Give Him Water If He’s Thirsty
Rom. 12:20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.
- Do we meet the requirements of sonship listed of Matthew 5:43-46?
- Do we qualify as a child of the Father?
- I pray we all do!
The Best Thing I Can Do For You Is To Love You.
The Best Thing I Can Do For Myself Is To Love You.
By The Way, I Love You!
Results of a Critical Spirit
(Guest article by Pastor Mark McKinney, Indianapolis, Indiana.)
23 Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles.
24 Proud and haughty scorner is his name, who dealeth in proud wrath.
Tongue: law-shone; fig. (speech, an ingot, a fork of flame): — + babbler, bay, + evil speaker, language, talker.
- Keepeth his mouth.
- He who is without sin.*
- You can’t whitewash yourself, by blackening others.
When a sinner is converted they enjoy:
- Bible Study
- Prayer Meetings
- Church in general
- Thinks everybody loves one another
- All seems to be wonderful
Then Critical Spirit Develops:
- Pastor doesn’t seem capable anymore
- His decisions not as sound as before
- He stands smaller in esteem
- Sermons don’t seem to have effect anymore
- Saints are hypocrites
- Bad feelings causes divisions
A Critical Spirit Denotes:
- A deficient Prayer life. (Pro. 28:9)
- A bitter spirit. (He. 12:15-17) *
Bitterness: Painful to the mind or body; Unpleasant to accept, hard to bear, distressful. Harsh as cutting words, cruel, characterized by intense animosity
Results of Bitter Spirit:
- God won’t bless over the mess
- Feelings of others will get involved
- Valuable ground has been lost, may never be regained.
- Spirit like a virus (highly contagious)
- Revival hindered (repentance and confession in order)
*Where it all Leads*
- Rumors ‑ Tale bearing
- False accusations (the devil is the accuser of the brethren)
- Evil imagination (second guessing) *
- Slander: A false tale or report maliciously uttered and tending to injure the reputation of another
- Critical spirit will not accept council.
- (Pr.9:8‑10, 15:32‑33, 19:20‑23)
- Guilty of self‑justification
- (f) Raising a generation of cursed children
- Cursed by their own parents spirit
- Faith in church gone
- Lack of confidence in Pastor’s life
- Ministry, and prayers
- Loss of love for Saints and church.
* Charity *
I Co. 13:1‑7
1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.
3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.
4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
~ Bro M. S. McKinney
The Sin Of Finding Fault
Prov. 6:16 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:
Prov. 6:17 A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
Prov. 6:18 An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
Prov. 6:19 A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.
God hated the first six things mentioned here. The seventh one… He hated it so much, He called it an abomination.
“The sowing of discord among brethren.”
If God calls it an abomination, then it’s a bad sin.
1. ‘The Sanballat Syndrome’. – (He wanted Nehemiah’s work to fail.)
- It hinders growth
- It divides
- It sows discord
- Critics do great damage.
- Do you want your church to fail? Then don’t kill it with criticism.
- Many are destroyed by criticism.
2. What makes people criticize? There is always a motive!
The reason Judas became critical of Mary washing the feet of Jesus and breaking the expensive alabaster box with perfumed ointment, is because he wanted it to be sold so he could get his hands on the money. He was a thief!
John 12:5 Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?
John 12:6 This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.
There is a reason, a good reason why people say what they say.
What makes you criticize? At the very least, it’s a spirit that is using you to bring disruption into the Kingdom. Your actions hinder unity at the very least.
3. Biblical treatment of critics.
Railers are critics or fault finders that make little snippy comments. Sometimes they even make harsh indictments.
Luke 23:39 And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us.
2Pet. 2:10 But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.
4. Paul said, don’t even eat with a critic. Don’t sit at the same table. That spirit will get on you.
1Cor. 5:11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.
5. Murmuring in the wilderness
It brought the judgment of God.
- The fiery serpents.
- God keeps track of your complaints.
- He reminded them that they had murmured 10 times.
- God said that by murmuring, they had tempted Him to destroy them.
- Complaining is criticism.
- Don’t make God want to get rid of you.
They make comments about:
- The temperature
- The noise level.
- The drums
- The songs
- The sermon
- The sermon length
- What someone wore
- The worshipers
- The youth group
- The youth leader
- Those that pray too loud
- The preacher, his wife, his kids
- The offerings
- The tithes
7. Fault Finders:
- Have a self–righteous attitude.
- They have a sense of superiority.
- They have pride issues.
- Refuse to admit what their doing is wrong.
My father had a sign in his pastoral office that said: “You can’t white wash yourself by blackening others.”
8. Like the Pharisee praying in the Temple with the publican,
They thank God they are not like other men. Yet unknown to them, God is not hearing their prayers.
9. Haman could not see the thousands bowing down before him.
All he could focus on was the one that didn’t. That fault led to his eventual downfall and death. He could not enjoy what he had. He could only see what wasn’t going his way.
10. To those that battle with this problem, there is hope.
- Paul mentioned that he had learned in what so ever state he was in to be content.
- It’s possible to learn to be content.
Contented people do not criticize. They are content.
- May there be peace in our spirits and in our church.
- Contentment is a friend of unity.
- Unity preceded the Holy Ghost outpouring in the book of Acts.
Barnabas was an encourager. He was an edifier.
May God give us more men like Barnabas. We desperately need them.