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Archive for the ‘God's House’ Category

Gates Without Fences

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Gates Without Fences

 

A gate without a fence is like having standards in a church without enforcement. Some preachers say that they preach holiness and that they preach against sin, but they never name the sin nor enforce what they preach.

They brag about having a gate. They point at their gate. They might even decorate their little gate. But since there is no fence attached, the people feel they can live for God without any restrictions. Dress like they want. Go where they want. Watch what they want. Do what they want. Live like they want. They easily wander toward whatever worldly thing attracts them… Seemingly without consequence from their leadership.

Fences are built to keep the unwanted out. Fences are necessary for living Godly in an Ungodly World. Why wouldn’t you want a fence?

Advice from an old man? If you choose to put up a gate, make sure you include a good fence.

If you don’t, you will never be taken seriously as a man of God. You will have nothing but a congregation of world-minded members who are comfortable being carnal.

If a pastor is afraid to enforce doctrine and enforce separation from the world, because he may lose some of his members.  He is not much more than a hireling in God’s Eyes. He is not pleasing to God. His congregation is trying to survive spiritually on pop-psychology type sermons and may be lost. They sing and preach about a Holy God, without wanting to be Holy themselves.

They Brag about their Gate.  But, they don’t have a Fence!

(If You’re Serious About Being Saved. Make Sure You Have A Fence Around You For Protection.)

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

September 12, 2020 at 10:59 pm

If I Attend A Church That Preaches…

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Written by Martyn Ballestero

June 8, 2020 at 11:28 pm

Pentecostal Driftwood Dealers

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Pentecostal Driftwood Dealers

 

Driftwood was once a strong growing limb connected to a tree trunk. It received its nourishment and source of strength from its roots. But, something happened that forever changed its appearance and characteristics. The harshness of the wind and sea forever marked it as unsuitable for residential or commercial construction. Lumber Yards do not sell driftwood.

Now and then, in coastal areas, a passerby may spot a store that seems to specialize in driftwood.

As a rule, the best that one can expect it to be now is a space filler or maybe an ornament. It can be painted, sprayed, bleached, washed, stained, and overlaid, but it is still what it is.

Most of us look at its unusual formations and decide whether or not it’s something we would like to look at all the time. Occasionally, pieces are picked up by some and taken home. Sometimes, a piece of driftwood is used as decoration on the lawn or flower bed.

If a cottage is located on a beach and a storm brings driftwood on the property, it’s next residing place is the county dump. Or, at best, dried out and used for firewood.

Driftwood dealers are unusual at best. The strangest driftwood dealers of all are the… Pentecostal Driftwood Dealers.

Some Pentecostal Churches seem to have a custom of keeping all the driftwood that appears in their pews. At best, it only fills space.

 

But, What Do You Expect To Build Out Of Driftwood?

 

Do those Pentecostal Driftwood Dealers ever wonder or ask where the driftwood came from, or why it detached itself from its source? Do they ever trace its back trail and call the former pastor? No? Why not? Sadly, some Driftwood Dealers play finders keepers.

 

Driftwood Has Also Been Called:

  • Flotsam
  • Jetsam
  • Debris
  • Wash-out
  • Wreckage
  • Junk
  • Trash
  • Waste
  • Scrap

And, about sixty more names on https://www.powerthesaurus.org/driftwood/synonyms

 

Pastor… Is This The Material You Expect To Use To Build Your Church?

 

How can you better your congregation by taking in someone who left their home church because they had a problem with Holiness or Standards?

Why let someone who has a problem Submitting to their Pastor’s Authority influence your congregation?

Warning!!! Their past Moral problems may easily continue.

 

If you expect driftwood to once again become connected to any root system you will be disappointed. You do know that what floats in, may also float back out? Is it the need for numbers that drive you to take in whatever you can regardless of the cost?

Are you so dishonest and unscrupulous that you never pick up a phone and call their former pastor? Or, even ask for a letter? Your greed for new members cheapens your ministry.

Who was your pastor? Why weren’t you even taught the basics of ministerial ethics? What keeps you from just sending the driftwood back to where it came from or let it continue on its way? Are you happy being known among your brethren as a Driftwood Dealer? Good men will question that about you, and if you persist, they may also question other things about you as well.

Ministerial ethics doesn’t carry any particular color of fellowship card. One is either ethical or not ethical at all. How can you consider yourself ethical when you keep what is not yours?

 

God Has A Problem With Those Who Keep Their Neighbors Sheep When It Strays Into Their Pasture.

 

Lev 6:1  And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,

Lev 6:2  If a soul sin, and commit a trespass against the LORD, and lie unto his neighbour in that which was delivered him to keep, or in fellowship, or in a thing taken away by violence, or hath deceived his neighbour;

Lev 6:3  Or have found that which was lost, and lieth concerning it, and sweareth falsely; in any of all these that a man doeth, sinning therein:

Lev 6:4  Then it shall be, because he hath sinned, and is guilty, that he shall restore that which he took violently away, or the thing which he hath deceitfully gotten, or that which was delivered him to keep, or the lost thing which he found,

Lev 6:5  Or all that about which he hath sworn falsely; he shall even restore it in the principal, and shall add the fifth part more thereto, and give it unto him to whom it appertaineth, in the day of his trespass offering.

Lev 6:6  And he shall bring his trespass offering unto the LORD, a ram without blemish out of the flock, with thy estimation, for a trespass offering, unto the priest:

Lev 6:7  And the priest shall make an atonement for him before the LORD: and it shall be forgiven him for any thing of all that he hath done in trespassing therein.

 

 

*If God Required Gopher Wood For The Building Of Noah’s Ark…

*If He Demanded That Acacia Wood Used In The Construction Of The Tabernacle…

*Then Know That The Lord Is Particular And Will Not Build His Church Out Of Driftwood!

 

God Detests Driftwood Dealers.

Neighbor Pastors Detest Them As Well.

 

Sir? Are You A Pastor According To God’s Heart, Or Just A Driftwood Dealer?

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

February 14, 2020 at 7:28 pm

You Ain’t Got Time!!

with 6 comments

 

 

 

 

 

You Ain’t Got Time!!

 

I Understand!

I Don’t Know How You Can Do What You Do!

You’re Busy! Very Busy!

I’m Even A Bit Sorry To Say Anything And Interrupt You!

 

Studies Show The Average American Works 47 Hours A Week. Or, 8.8 Hours A Day.

The Gallop Poll: https://news.gallup.com/poll/175286/hour-workweek-actually-longer-seven-hours.aspx

 

The Average American

  • Sleeps About 8 Hours A Day
  • Eats About 67 Minutes A Day
  • Drives About 101 Minutes A Day
  • Watches 2.8 Hours Of TV A Day

https://www.tempo.io/blog/7-time-consuming-things-an-average-joe-spends-in-a-lifetime

 

The Average American Spends 12 Hours And 9 Minutes A Day On Media.

https://www.emarketer.com/content/us-time-spent-with-media-2019

 

The Average American Spends 24 Hours A Week On-Line

https://www.technologyreview.com/f/610045/the-average-american-spends-24-hours-a-week-online/

 

Teens Spend Nine Hours A Day In Front Of Screens.

Plus, They Go To School For About Six Hours A Day.

Children 8-12 Spend Six Hours A Day With Screens.

 

Teens Spend ‘Astounding’ Nine Hours a Day in Front of Screens: – BY MAGGIE FOX AND ERIKA EDWARDS

 

Besides All This… There’s:

  • House Cleaning
  • Laundry
  • Shopping
  • Lawn Care
  • Home Maintenance
  • Gym Work Outs
  • Meal Preparations
  • Caring For Your Children
  • School/College Classes
  • Homework
  • Cramming For Exams
  • Your Job

 

There Are Not Enough Hours in Your Day. I Get That.

You’re Overwhelmed With Your Schedule. Absolutely.

Your Plate Is Too Full To Add Anything Else. I See That.

  

I Understand That You Aren’t Able To Be Involved Much At Church Because Of Your Schedule.

 

So, I Won’t Ask Why You Weren’t At Church Sunday Night, Or At The Midweek Service.

 

 

I Also Noticed You Don’t Have Time To Help: 

  • Drive The Sunday School Bus
  • Work The Bus Route
  • Teach Sunday School
  • Help In The Nursery

 

  • Be Involved In Ladies / Men’s Groups
  • Do Visitor Follow Up
  • Be In The Choir
  • Play In The Orchestra

 

  • Do Bible Quizzing
  • Be At Prayer Meeting
  • Make It To Pre-Service Prayer
  • Be Part Of The Youth Department

 

  • Teach Home Bible Studies
  • Do Outreach
  • Help In The Easter Pageant
  • Help With Children’s Church

 

  • Serve After Church
  • Be At Men’s Work Day
  • Clean The Church
  • Join Usher / Greeter Department

 

  • Cleaning Up After Meals / Washing Dishes
  • Decorating
  • Fund Raising
  • Working In The Fireworks Stand

 

  • Mow The Church Yard
  • Plant Flowers
  • Pull Weeds
  • Help In The Media Room

 

  • Being Used In Intercessory Prayer
  • Pray Around The Altar
  • Visit The Sick
  • Care For The Widows

 

 

You’re Very Busy! Yet, You Find Time To…

  • Keep Up With All The Sports Teams And Their Stats.
  • Know All About Politics And Politicians
  • Hang Out With Your Friends Regularly
  • Take Selfies At Starbucks And Nice Restaurants

 

  • Take Weekend Get-A-Way Trips
  • Go Hunting And Fishing
  • Enjoy Your Hobbies
  • Visit Friends And Relatives

 

And, You’ve Got Time To…

  • Gossip on The Phone
  • Go Out To McDonald’s After Church
  • Stay Out Past Midnight
  • Play War Games On Your Computer
  • Baby Sit
  • Play Ball With The Church Group
  • Take Your Dog Jogging

You MAKE Time To Do What You Want To Do!

 

 

Let’s Talk About Who You May Not Want To Confront You In The Judgment!

 

Jonah – He was too busy and filled with excuses to obey God’s Call. He ran from his duty. God sent a storm to get his attention.

 

James And John – Left their nets and their livelihood and followed Jesus.

 

Matthew – Walked away from his Tax Collecting table and followed Jesus.

 

Doctor Luke Closed his Clinic and sent his patients away and followed Jesus.

 

Martha – Too busy to sit at the feet of Jesus.

 

Elisha – Was plowing with 12 yoke of oxen. He killed his oxen and made a sacrifice of them and followed Elijah, not even taking the time to tell his family goodbye.

 

Woman At The Well – Left her water pot at the well to go tell everyone about Jesus.

 

Ruth – Walked away from her family, her people and her gods, to follow after Naomi and her God.

 

Noah – Put his life on hold to obey God’s command to build an Ark.

 

Phebe – “A servant of the church.”

 

 

 

God Even Used Teenagers In The Bible

 

  • Mary – Mother of Jesus
  • Joseph –  Was 17
  • Daniel – Teen when captured. Became Prime Minister
  • David – 17 when he killed Goliath
  • Jeremiah – 14 when he started Prophesying and said  “Ask for the old paths”
  • Esther – When she stood before the king.
  • James and John – teens when Jesus called them.
  • Timothy – A teen when he began to work with Paul

 

 

The Inhabitants Of Meroz Were Too Busy Taking Care Of Their Flocks And Herds To Help The Rest Of Israel Fight The Enemy.

 

Judges 5:23 Curse ye Meroz, said the angel of the LORD, curse ye bitterly the inhabitants thereof; because they came not to the help of the LORD, to the help of the LORD against the mighty.

 

This Society Wants Everything Given To Them.

They Think Life Is Just About Them.

 

As In The Bible Days… They Follow Jesus For The Loaves And The Fishes.

They Want Heavenly Rain To Fall On Their Lives, Yet Refuse To Send Up Any Vapor.

 

 

Today I Make A Plea For Your Involvement In The Work Of The Lord

 

Your Lack Of Involvement Is

  • Hindering Revival In Your Church.
  • Causing Apathy To Spread.
  • Cursing Your Soul.
  • Killing Your Pastor By Making Him Take Up The Slack.

 

How Can You Say You Live For God When Your Life Is All About You?

You Are Not Living For God, You’re Living For You.

Actually… It’s Not YOUR Life At All. You’ve Been Bought With A Price.

 

Deut. 6:5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

 

Does The Following Scripture Describe You?

 

Luke 8:14  And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.

 

If So, Repent And Live For God With All Your Heart.

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

December 9, 2019 at 7:48 am

I Would Appreciate It If You Just Wouldn’t Mention Anything About…

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I Would Appreciate It If You Just Wouldn’t Mention Anything About…

The car glided quietly down the Texas road. The only noise came from the breeze in the open windows of the car. The fact that there was no air conditioner in the car made it necessary to roll the windows down because of the heat.

“Brother Ballestero, tonight is the first night of our revival and you will notice three teenage girls that are the praise singers. You will notice also that they are all wearing mini-skirts. They have such great spirits. I am working with them on their attire and I would appreciate it if you just wouldn’t mention anything about mini-skirts or short skirts while you’re here.”

He said that while looking straight ahead. I never turned mine to look at him. Here was an icon in Texas asking me to not to say anything about mini-skirts.

“No problem!” I blurted out.

“Oh, thank you!” He said.

“Well, that was easy. If you would, I have a couple here who have just inherited $1,000,000.00 and they haven’t paid tithes yet. If you say anything while you are here about tithes, they will think I talked to you about it, get mad and may not pay tithes at all. So, if you just wouldn’t say anything about tithes while you’re here I will take it as a personal favor.”

“Not a problem, sir,” I said.

“Well then, just one more thing. I have a precious little Assemblies of God couple coming here and I am waiting for the Holy Ghost to reveal the revelation of the Oneness of the Godhead to them. So, if you wouldn’t preach on the Godhead while you’re here. I would take that as a personal favor also.”

“Relax brother,” I said.
“While I’m here, all I’m going to preach is Jesus!”

He looked at me with relief in his eyes and said, “Thank You.”

“The reason that all I am going to preach while I’m here is Jesus is that it sounds like no one here knows Him!” I said flatly while looking through the front window.

(I am not sure why that revival only lasted one night, but I have a good guess.)

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

July 11, 2019 at 10:54 pm

“How Old Are You, Brother Ballestero?”

with 13 comments

 

“How Old Are You, Brother Ballestero?”

I guess I could answer their questions in the normal way, but that would be too easy. It’s more enjoyable to watch their faces when I answer in terms of events rather than the expected number of years.

 

I have been known to respond something like this…

 

“I’m So Old That:

“I can remember when hymns and choruses actually rhymed.

“I actually heard the saints stand up and testify in a regular testimony service.

“I’ve even heard prayer rooms roar with the sounds of victorious saints bombarding Heaven while putting the devil on the run.

 

“I actually saw Sunday School Attendance Boards displaying things like:

  • Attendance Today
  • Offering Amount
  • Number of Visitors
  • Number of Bibles Brought

 

“Church Songs Were…

  • About deliverance from sin.
  • About heaven being a holy place.
  • About the Lord’s return to earth
  • About having your sins washed away.

 

“I actually heard preachers name sin from the pulpit.

“Wayward saints got rebuked openly from the pulpit, that others might fear.

“Hearing the phrase: ‘Holiness or Hell,’ was common.

 

“Holiness and modesty were expected among all Holy Ghost filled saints.

“If the pastor said it, young people obeyed without questioning his reasons or his authority.

“No saint ever chewed gum in church. It was too disrespectful.

 

“Expectant mothers wore loose attire that only revealed a minimum of information.

“Sword Drills were common in youth services.

“A Sunday morning service included a Bible class, a second worship service, and preaching.

 

“Sunday night church was always expected.

“Mid-week schedule of services included a Tuesday and Thursday or a Wednesday and Friday.

“Revivals were held every night but Monday.

 

“Preachers wore white shirts to church and they always wore a tie.

“Rings on a preacher were noticed by everyone.

“When the preacher announced his text, the sound of Bible pages turning would be discerned by everyone.

 

“The spirit of Conviction was the norm in most every service.

“Messages in tongues were not uncommon.

“The sounds of Intercessory Prayer were heard in most churches.

 

“The preaching wasn’t politically correct.

“No one claimed to be living for God with a TV in their house.

“When saints never went to ball games or movies.

 

“When Apostolic saints shunned all of Hollywood.

“When church services often went past 10 pm.

“When New Year’s Eve Watch Night Service most often included a confession service as well.

 

“When we bragged about carrying folks home drunk on the Holy Ghost.

“When folks who disregarded standards were called backsliders.

“When young men didn’t justify wearing shorts just because they came to the knee.

 

“When saintly women abhorred the wearing of any type of makeup because they didn’t want to look like a Jezebel and ruin their testimony.

“When the lights weren’t turned down low at the altar call, and everyone could see who needed to pray.

“When doctrine and standards were openly preached and wonderfully received.

 

“When preachers didn’t teach doctrine and standards in private classes so as not to scare any visitors.

“When Break-Out Sessions were unheard of.

“When those whose prophecies didn’t come to pass were called false prophets.

 

But now…

We’ve moved ‘up’ to the next level of Pentecost!!

 

“You didn’t actually answer my question, Brother Ballestero! You still haven’t told me how old you are. How old are you?”

 

Again, My Response…

“Old enough to want to hear doctrine preached and not some feel-good pop psychology type sermon.

 

“I’m so old that I search for churches that still have that old-time Apostolic feeling.

“I look for churches that still want to hear preaching like it used to be.

“Where testimonies have that New Jerusalem ring to them.

 

“I look for churches that haven’t thrown all the old songs away.

“I want to find places where holiness is still in style.

“Where ALL of the Bible is preached without apology.”

 

“That’s how old I am!”

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

June 29, 2019 at 10:30 pm

The Princess Within Conference, By Nila Marxer

with 7 comments

 

Two of my sisters, Nila Marxer and Carlene Branham just returned from the “Princess Within Conference” in Corona, Californina. This blog is part of Nila’s letter to me today about her experience with the inmates at the conference.

Nila Marxer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This prison field is filled with so many hungry women. There were 30 women who received the Holy Ghost for the first time, 18 renewed, and 12 signed up for baptism! We’ve been trying to get into this prison for almost 20 years, and finally we’ve had a breakthrough. Actually, women from this prison and the Chowchilla prison have been fasting on the 25th of every month for years for a Holy Ghost church service to come to the prisons.

I was humbled by their hunger and desire to hear the Word and to be loved.

The first picture was the entire group minus 2 people. The second was the Sunday morning picture of those who went. A lot had to go back home.

 

Fear will keep many people from doing the will of God and fulfilling His purpose for their life. Don’t say you want to be used of God, and not be willing to do what is needed to further the kingdom.

My life will never be the same. I went to the Princess Within Conference in Corona this weekend with anticipation of helping others, when in fact this experience helped me more than words can express.

Prayer and fasting had gone up for this conference, and when we completed the process of entering into the prison, setting up the equipment and chairs and setting out water bottles and sweets for each prisoner, you could already feel a powerful move of the Holy Ghost. Whitney Rhinehart began practicing songs, and others joined in. Everyone was involved. We did not come just to be a warm body, but we were needed. Those of us who had finished setting up were prayerfully awaiting the prisoners. When the door opened, and the women began filing in, worship had already filled the room. Some of the prisoners were worshiping and clapping as they began to find a seat. At first it took a while for the majority of the women to show up, because it was taco night, and they all wanted to eat the only good meal of the week. (The enemy was using everything to try to hinder this conference.)

The volunteers lined up to give gifts, shake everyone’s hand, welcome them, and thank them for coming. Some were shy, but you could see the majority of the prisoners craved love. Each song was effective, each sermon was powerfully anointed, and no one left unmoved. They came in worshiping like I haven’t seen in a regular church setting. Not just a few raised their hands, but every hand was raised, everyone clapped, everyone worshiped.

The first thing I noticed about the women, was that they looked like normal women, not like hardened criminals that I imagined. The majority of these women carried Bibles. Some of these Bibles were well-read and falling apart. In many of them, I could see various pages of notes stuck in-between the pages. I thought how many of us church people will go to church without our Bibles? How many church people take time to read God’s Word? Some of these women took notes on every scripture reference, and would look at their friends when a specific verse was mentioned, and would finish the scripture, reciting along with the various ministers. These women were well-acquainted with the Word, yet they were starving. Starving for the preached Word, starving for worship, starving for love, starving to feel the power of the Holy Ghost. My heart was lost to them within the first five minutes of meeting them.

On the first night, the preacher finished preaching, and opened the front for those who wanted the Holy Ghost. The women poured down to the altar. We volunteers stood in the front facing them, and soon were inundated by scores of women who wanted prayer. As soon as one received the Holy Ghost, there were many women all around them with their arms raised asking for prayer. I couldn’t stop crying as one by one these women were receiving the Holy Ghost. They fell on my neck, thanking me for coming, and showing them love. I wept with them, knowing they were my sisters-in-the-Lord. Not only did they need me, I needed them.
Before I walked into the prison yard, I had felt some apprehension, not knowing how this was going to unfold, but I can’t begin to explain the joy I had in being involved in this prison ministry, and the hunger I have to go back and continue to spread this precious Truth!

I was humbled by some of the testimonies I heard. Chaffey College was having a graduation ceremony at the same time we were having the Saturday morning service. One of the girls told me she was graduating with her bachelor’s degree. She said, “I had to make a decision whether I was going to walk and get my diploma, or come to church.” She was crying as she spoke, saying, “It was an easy decision to make. They can always mail me my diploma, but there won’t always be a Holy Ghost church service.”

Another girl said that she got her diploma, (missing the early morning session.) She hadn’t seen her family for seven years. Her family had come a long way to see her graduate and spend a little time with her. Knowing how little time these prisoners get to see their loved ones, the few moments together are cherished. Yet, this young lady walked down the aisle, got her degree, and then told her folks goodbye, because she had to go to church.

These testimonies gripped my heart, because those women cherish church above everything. So many women thanked me for loving them. (They were so easy to love.)

The first night I came home, I couldn’t sleep, seeing their faces lifted in prayer, feeling their hugs, and them gripping my hands tearfully asking me not to forget to pray for them. How can I forget?

It was during a worship song on Saturday when I felt God speak to me that I need to focus on His work. I had been focusing on my son who has been bound by sin and desperately needs deliverance. If I will focus on His kingdom and the souls that He loves, then He will focus on my prayers for my family and those that I love. It’s a win-win situation.

The last prisoner spoke to me as they were leaving and said that many churches have come to the prison, but never in her life has she felt such power and such love. She said, the love affected her more than anything. She felt loved by God, and by His people. She wondered why she had never felt love like this before.

I told her, “Honey, it’s the Holy Ghost love that you feel.”
My mind went back to the scripture, “This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you.” (John 15:12 KJV) Oh, how He loves us, and them!

She said, “It has to be, because I’ve never seen anything like this in all my life. Please don’t forget us. Please come back and help us learn more!”

I thought of the scripture that says:
“Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: For I was an hungered, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.”
Matthew 25:41-43 KJV

May that never be said about me. Lord, I will go.

Nila Marxer

What Kind Of Son Are You?

with 4 comments

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Kind Of Son Are You?

There was a certain Father who had many sons and daughters. The children by now all lived on their own and seemed happy. He had treated them all so kindly that they doted on Him and often just stopped by His house to tell Him that they loved Him.

More often than not they would ask Him if there was anything they could do for Him. That always made Him smile. Sometimes they would say, “Father, if You see me doing something that displeases You… please let me know. You have been so good to me, that I want to spend the rest of my life doing things that please You. It made the Father’s heart rejoice to know His children loved Him.

One day two of the oldest brothers noticed that the youngest brother only came around the Father’s house on Sunday mornings about 10 AM and occasionally on Wednesday evenings around 7 PM when the special family meals were prepared.  He wasn’t always punctual, and they noticed that when he did come around it was only for food. Most of the other children came early before meal time to talk with their father and enjoy the comfort of His presence and love, and stayed late. The youngest son never came early, and seldom on time.

Once in a while, he would come to his Father’s house because he needed money or some help with a desperate situation. He would always show his thanks and appreciation for the blessing.

The two brothers watched one night as the youngest came late to the table where the others were already eating and with a sheepish look slid into his chair. They gave each other a knowing look.

The oldest said to the youngest, “How come you only come around the Father’s house when there are loaves and fishes on the table? How come you never want to just come and visit a while with our Father and enjoy His company? Man, you’re really missing out! There’s no one in the world more wonderful than Him! Everyone notices that you have plenty of time to go visit all your friends or do your fishing and hunting. Don’t you know that when the rest of us come to visit with Him that we see Him looking down the road towards your house? He watches you walking in the other direction from Him to be with your friends, or go do your thing. And, then when a need arises you have the gall to act as though you love Him so that you can ask Him for a favor, hit up for money and mooch off of Him. He’s always giving to you and you give nothing back to Him. What’s wrong with you? What kind of son are you?

The supper table grew quiet. A tear ran down the Father’s cheek. The younger son glared at his older brother and left the table. The children put their heads down fearing to see the expression on their Father’s face. They knew how much their Father loved the one who wouldn’t return His love.

 

 

Is this your story?

 

 

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

May 11, 2019 at 7:30 pm

What Type Of Spiritual Leader Are You?

with 2 comments

 

Guest Blog By Ramona Yandris

Ramona Yandris

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Sister, Ramona Yandris is married to Bishop Nathan Yandris. They have served for many years at Faith Tabernacle Apostolic Church, Tracy, CA. She has served a lifetime as a gifted Speaker, Musician, Singer, and Music Director. May her words be a blessing to you!

 

 

What Type Of Spiritual Leader Are You?

This is in no way meant to reference any one person… this is just the musings and thoughts while studying God’s Word.

Great Spiritual Leadership has always caused a great and notable outcome!  It is getting harder to find Spiritual leaders that rise up in this day and age and lead with no guile. (Hear me out before you judge) But when they do… The Miraculous happens!  In this day, when pulpit ministry looks so glamorous….when crowds follow speakers to every conference to “hear” a sermon… then we raise up a “glorified speaker!”

If that same speaker… builds a church… rolls up his sleeves… also puts his shoulder to the wheel, outreaches his own community, tends to his own flock tirelessly, prays for the sick, gives to the poor, lifts a hand to the down and out, builds faith and instills Gods Word in his congregation and actually “Leads” then he raises up ministers and workers in the “Harvest” under him who also will replicate his work!

 

We learn so much from each leader…

  • Some are called to evangelize…
  • Some are called to be Apostles…
  • Some are called to Pastor…
  • Some are called as Prophets…
  • Some are called to teach…

Then there are secondary leaders, those who are called to “help.” Someone who feels supporting the ministry they were called into as essential in upholding the arms of God’s man!  They defend Him. They take the load off of him. They love him for what he is and are loyal to the cause, seeking nothing in return!  This is a rare gem in ministry to find such a secondary leader as most only want advancement and the ultimate spotlight. Although most are called to advance further, it is refreshing and a blessing to see someone understand and walk in this secondary leadership role hand in hand with God’s appointed leader.

Sadly, in this day we rely on a vote for a man (most times it is necessary) and have gotten away from a man who was so in tune with the Holy Ghost that he could say with power and knowledge,  “God has called me to ???,” and then wade through many adversities until a monument for Christ is built to Glorify God and win the lost! My proverbial hat is off to church builders who work it from the ground up. They literally give everything to the Kingdom of God.  The next man stepping in reaps the rewards with no labor… seems not fair… right?

I began to think what story certain leaders in the Bible left us with that revealed traits like character, strength, honor, dishonor, compassion, True Agape love, dishonest, Loyal/disloyal, offended, cruel, harsh, gentle, Anointed, prayerful, righteous, lovers of God more than lovers of self, and steadfast. I ask myself, “How do so many with these obvious human flaws get used by God?”  See, we humans think “YOU” (we don’t include ourselves in that exclusion)  have to be perfect before we can be “used.” There are so many places God can use us all!  We just have to first know and always remind ourselves that “Kingdom First” should be our motto.

If someone sings better than you, don’t attack them and use jealous tactics to get the part you crave.  Be a team member in ministry!

Be the first to give up your seat at the piano/organ/bass/guitar/drums/bongos/tambourine/etc.  if someone else can more skillfully bring others to worship. Yes, there is a place for us all but none of us own our positions. We should all ultimately be on the “Kingdom Team” and want God Glorified!

 

He literally can use ANYBODY!  It just takes a WILLING and Anointed VESSEL!

So, in each church leadership, you might recognize some of the following traits in these biblical examples. See where you fit in or where you recognize the reference.

Let us also not be so quick to point our finger at the reference of others. There are always at least a few fingers pointing back at us. That is humbling!

Here goes…

 

The Elijah Leader!!!!

1 Kings 18:22 Then said Elijah unto the people, I, even I only, remain a prophet of the LORD; but Baal’s prophets are four hundred and fifty men.

Some are like Elijah. They operate in hopelessness. They think they are doing it all alone. They whine and gripe that they do it alone. They simply do not know how to delegate and use others. Sometimes God has to remind them that He has many more doing the same thing!  We are not in this alone! We need and use each other to advance not our Kingdom but rather God’s Kingdom!

 

The Jezebel (wannabe) Leader

Jezebel. This spirit wants to control everything and everyone!  It can be male or female.

Every spirit of control in the church that does not line up with the pulpit, the man of God and God’s Word is OUT OF ORDER!  You are an accident waiting to happen!  You cannot muzzle the Ox (referring to the pastor), nor can you insert your control over the man of God and the departments of the church!  God will see to it that you and your household will come to ruin.  You simply have the wrong spirit and outlook on God’s man and His Work!  If you don’t love the man of God (your pastor), then how can you say you love God? Don’t worry though pastor… God’s got this. You just keep right on working for the Kingdom.  The Jezebels will fall by the wayside and the church will roll right on!

 

The Jonah Leader!

Jonah leaders run from responsibilities. Oh, how easy this temptation is for humanity.  Like the saying, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going!”  In this day of ease, most don’t stick it out.  They crash and burn at the first sight of trouble! Their blinders have been removed and they get overwhelmed at the very thought of the “work set before them!” They forgot that God promised that His Grace was sufficient for EVERY need!  He gives us sometimes (as the song used to say).

“Just enough to take me through one more mile.

Just enough to dry my eyes a little while

When I get home…

I won’t need it.

But as I travel, this weary land

He always gives me

Just enough Grace to stand!”

If God calls you into a difficult ministry or position!  Stay the course.  Don’t quit or defect EVERY-TIME  you think someone is talking about you, or you have adversity.

If God calls you TO it,

He will bring you THROUGH it!

Stay the course and quit being a QUITTER!

 

The Moses Leader!!!!

Moses let anger lead.  So many events happen in our lives as ministry that brings us to anger. Yet, the scripture says “Let he who rules WELL be worthy of DOUBLE Honor!”  The decisions a pastor makes has to be from a clear head.  We may have our own personal opinions about someone but remember the person you are angry at is STILL a child of God and your outburst of anger can not only cause defeat in your flock but can also keep you from where God actually intended for you to attain to in your own promised land!  If people disappoint us and walk away, let them go.  Let them go!  Let them go!  Not everybody fits our unique circle or within the personality of a church.  Don’t assault them with unkind and angry words.  We bless them and pray God’s best for their life.  It doesn’t mean you have to have contact. In fact, it’s best to not. What’s the point? It keeps your anger and bitterness at Bay. So, allow people to go and flourish elsewhere.  God always sends a replacement usually sooner than later who will be faithful.

 

The Saul Leader!

Saul tried to destroy other anointed leaders. This is one of the most commonly used tactics among ministry today.  If someone is offended at you for ANY reason, the petty flesh tries to tear down a person’s reputation. If they can destroy you among the brethren then you just might quit coming around.  If you will quit coming around then they can remain “King of the Roost!”  This type of man (or woman) is definitely not Kingdom minded and seeks only to elevate themselves! They also promote their flock to honor only them and have “preacher worship” mentality. A premiere flock (and a tribute to the former pastor) is one who stays and is loyal to the Kingdom in spite of XYZ!  Love and honor your pastor (this is Biblical), but don’t have preacher worship!  Have God worship!  He shares His Glory with NO ONE!

 

The Judas Leader!!!

Judas… untrustworthy! Reveals secrets to wound another to gain power. Will sell you out for advancement or validation! This takes the life out of so many of us. It is a trick of the enemy to cause offense! Yet in the end, the person you are really hurting is yourself!  God will fight the Battle of those wronged!  He keeps excellent records and you will be judged by your words and your deeds!  Keep your tongue in check!  If you are a friend to the ministry, be confidential!  You are there to support not tear down! If you are a minister and friends with another minister and you have information that tears down the other person… don’t go sell those secrets to the highest bidder. Shut your mouth and pray for your friend!  Go to them and in the spirit of love and unity reason with them regarding the error of their ways. Only then have you done what the Scriptures say to do!

Just for the record, the scripture says to “Mark them that cause division among you AND avoid them”. Nowhere does it say if a brother/sister is in error or taken in a fault to mark them and avoid them!  Yet, sadly that is what we do and we wonder why the person finally goes to another group… well it just may not be because they WANT an easier way… it just might mean they were treated so unjustly and unscriptural that in their mind, they had no way out.  Let’s love people back into our fold… My goodness!  Aren’t we tired of the “exit?”  It’s not all standard reasons folks…a lot of it is simply offense gone wrong!

 

The Enoch Leader!

Enoch… had a prayer life unrivaled!

The ministry friends that I have had in this day and age that greatly affected my life are the ministers that had an obvious powerful prayer life.  One in particular who was my pastor for a short season was Bro. Verbal Bean… Do you want a demonstration of the Holy Ghost like he had?  Get a prayer life like he had!  I can name so many men and women of God that has become an icon, not because of their gifting but rather because of their anointing resulting from their prayer life!  If you want to be caught up in the Heavens like Enoch, then DAILY walk with God!  Don’t leave it to “after service” prayer, but find your own space, your own room, no matter how “Big” you become. Keep that prayer life consistent. You don’t need to “tell” anyone “while I was in prayer today.” Your actions and unction will tell on you!

 

The Esau Leader!

Esau will sell out cheaply for an easier way. You don’t prepare for the task ahead?  You don’t value what you have been given?  You take it for granted? Your decisions are based on fleshly desires?  Then yes, we have another Esau in our hands.  One who will abandon what God meant for him because he wanted to quickly satisfy his flesh!  These people will sell out to the first person that will advance them… make their life easier and not make them accountable.  This simply speaks for itself!  No more words needed here!

 

The John the Revelator Leader!

John The Revelator works even though abandoned and wounded. Tortured for Christ sake and sent to die alone. This man of God decided I will leave a mark in this world for the sake of the Kingdom. God trusted him that He gave him visions and placed him in a solitary place where his mind and writings were solely devoted to what God gave him. “They” meant it for evil, but God meant it for GOOD!

The struggles and the trials you go through as ministry may not be to destroy you but rather to save the lost coming up behind you. God has a purpose and a plan.  If you truly mean for Him to use you, don’t get upset when things go bad.  When you can’t see the way, when you can’t figure out the why,  just trust Him! We may not understand it until we reach the other side.  When you are sold out, you are there to the bitter end.

We better toughen up!  As the “Day” approaches we are all going to be that much more offended, hurt, rejected, wounded, talked about, mistreated, persecuted. Instead of giving up… Take up YOUR CROSS, take up a pen… write encouraging words to yourself and to others!  Be strong and faint not!

 

The Peter Leader!

Peter let fear rule his actions

Yes, he was so afraid of Jesus going to the cross that he cut a man’s ear off… (yet he was bold enough to do that). He was so afraid of being found out that he was a disciple that he cursed and lied to prove he was “not of His!” He was so afraid that he never showed up at the cross!

When you are so sensitive that when things do not go your way or turn out like you would like them to, when the dream you had is shattered and fear grips you… affecting your words… your actions… your loyalty… (all of this was nothing more than a lack of faith) yet through all this foolishness… Jesus had great faith in Peter!  So many times, Jesus had to emphasise a point to Peter. ”Peter, do you love me?”  I often wondered why this line of questioning until you look at the overall high/low passion of Peter.  Jesus knew he operated out of passion.  Anger/Fear falls under that category.  Yet, emotional people can sometimes be the worst friends and worst leaders!  They always feel someone is talking about them. They are fatalistic in their words and kill hope and faith every time you converse with them. They are Spiritually Bi-polar!  You are exhausted when you leave their presence.  But Jesus knew one thing… if He could “channel” the passion Peter had in the right way, then there would be no stopping him.

  • Knowing that Peter denied Him.
  • Knowing that Peter disassociated himself from Him.
  • Knowing that Peter was angry.
  • Knowing that Peter was offended.
  • Knowing that the Disciples were offended at Peter.

Yet, when Jesus arose from the tomb he left a “young man, clothed in white” with a special message to the Disciples AND to PETER!  See at this point Peter had angered and offended himself (in his own mind) right out of the ministry. Yet Jesus, knowing Peters temperament left an angel to speak to him….to make this reference so the Disciples would accept him back….made special mention to the emotional future powerhouse in Mark16:7….”Go tell the disciples AND PETER that He (Jesus) goeth before you into Galilee”

That was a potential fatal flaw in Peter.  Anger and Fear can destroy a ministry… a marriage… a job… if you are in any ministry you MUST keep your emotions in check!  Peter was so overwhelmed at Jesus’s tolerance and forgiveness that he was humbled and became a Holy Ghost powerhouse for the Kingdom.

 

The John the Beloved Leader!

John stayed at the cross even though he could have been arrested.  Real leaders walk with you through the fire if you will allow them to! Before Jesus bowed His head and died He looked at His mother and said of John “Woman Behold your son!”  Take a look at someone who is sold out and will stay with you even though the odds are stacked against you!

He was one of the first to reach the tomb after Jesus arose.

John 19:26-27

John 20:1-10

Follows Jesus even though the other disciples questioned his involvement…

John 21:20-23

He was one of the 7 fishermen that fished all night when it looked hopeless… yet his persistence paid off when Jesus showed up!

John 21:1-25

Even though the other disciples cut him out of written involvement… he still kept ministering!

No wonder he was the “Beloved” of Jesus!  He exemplified more fruit of the Spirit than all of them put together!  He was completely “Christlike!

Maybe jealously caused him to be shut out!

So, whatever Style of Leadership you are given to,  make sure it lines up with advancing the Kingdom of God!  Don’t allow the flesh to rule spiritual things!

Please above all rule in love.  Don’t Lord over God’s heritage, nor be a Pharisee!  Be humble in spirit and in deed and let God be Glorified in all that we do!  If you have no ability to bind people together in love and in unity, you may merely have a desire, not a calling.

 

This is the Will of God!

 

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

March 9, 2019 at 1:14 pm

If God Ain’t Happy With You…

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If God Ain’t Happy With You…

  • You’re In Trouble! Big Trouble!
  • You Will Never Be Happy Either!

 

You Won’t Be Happy Because He Will Make Sure There Are Consequences.

Your ONLY Escape From His Displeasure Is To Humble Yourself And Repentant.

  • God wasn’t happy with Nineveh, but when they repented, and He showed them mercy.
  • God wasn’t happy with David, but when he repented God showed him mercy too.

 

*His Unhappiness With You Is Caused By Something You Did Or Didn’t Do.

If God Ain’t Happy With You…

  • There will be no blessings.
  • There will be no peace.
  • There will be no joy.
  • There will be no forgiveness.
  • There will be no answered prayer.

Just Ask:

  • Adam
  • Cain
  • Esau
  • Balaam
  • Nabal
  • Ananias and Sapphira
  • The Unknown Prophet
  • Lot’s Wife

Psa. 7:11 God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.

 

He’s Not Happy With You:

If You Love The World, He’s Not Happy With You.

1 John 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.

If You Are A Lover Of Pleasure, More Than A Lover Of God, He’s Not Happy With You.

2Ti 3:4  Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

2Ti 3:5  Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

If You Refuse To Forgive Others, He’s Not Happy With You.

Mat 6:15  But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses

If You Rob Him Of Tithes And Offerings, He’s Not Happy With You.

Mal. 3:8 Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.

Mal .3:9 Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.

Mal 3:10  Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.

If You Prophesy Falsely In His Name And He Hasn’t Spoken Through You, He’s Not Happy With You.

Jer. 14:14 Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart.

Jer. 14:15 Therefore thus saith the LORD concerning the prophets that prophesy in my name, and I sent them not, yet they say, Sword and famine shall not be in this land; By sword and famine shall those prophets be consumed.

If You Mistreat Your Wife, He’s Not Happy With You.

1 Peter 3:7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

If You Gossip And Are A Talebearer, He’s Not Happy With You.

Lev. 19:16 Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people: neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy neighbour: I am the LORD.

Lev. 19:17 Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.

Lev. 19:18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the LORD.

 If You Rebel Against The Pastor, He’s Not Happy With You.

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.

If You Refuse To Love Truth, He’s Not Happy With You!

2 Thess. 2:11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:

2 Thess. 2:12That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

If You’re Living In Sin, He’s Not Happy With You.

Isa 59:1 Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:

Isa 59:2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear

 

Do We Think God Will Be Happy With Us If We:

  • Get drunk
  • Commit Fornication or Adultery
  • Hate each other
  • Are Addicted To Drugs
  • Curse
  • Dress immodestly
  • Filled with Jealousy
  • Become Bitter
  • Question His Commandments
  • Have a problem with Holiness.
  • Lie
  • Dress immodestly
  • Create discord in His Church
  • Rebel against the Pastor
  • Cause Division among the brethren
  • Change churches anytime we want
  • Refuse to submit to authority

 

God Warns His People What He Will Do If He’s Not Happy With Them.

Lev 26:14 But if ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments;

Lev 26:15 And if ye shall despise my statutes, or if your soul abhor my judgments, so that ye will not do all my commandments, but that ye break my covenant:

Lev. 26:16 I also will do this unto you; I will even appoint over you terror, consumption, and the burning ague, that shall consume the eyes, and cause sorrow of heart: and ye shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it.

Lev. 26:17 And I will set my face against you, and ye shall be slain before your enemies: they that hate you shall reign over you; and ye shall flee when none pursueth you.

Lev. 26:18 And if ye will not yet for all this hearken unto me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins.

Lev. 26:19 And I will break the pride of your power; and I will make your heaven as iron, and your earth as brass:

Lev. 26:20 And your strength shall be spent in vain: for your land shall not yield her increase, neither shall the trees of the land yield their fruits.

Lev. 26:21 And if ye walk contrary unto me, and will not hearken unto me; I will bring seven times more plagues upon you according to your sins.

Lev. 26:22 I will also send wild beasts among you, which shall rob you of your children, and destroy your cattle, and make you few in number; and your high ways shall be desolate.

Lev. 26:23 And if ye will not be reformed by me by these things, but will walk contrary unto me;

Lev. 26:24 Then will I also walk contrary unto you, and will punish you yet seven times for your sins.

Lev. 26:25 And I will bring a sword upon you, that shall avenge the quarrel of my covenant: and when ye are gathered together within your cities, I will send the pestilence among you; and ye shall be delivered into the hand of the enemy.

Lev. 26:26 And when I have broken the staff of your bread, ten women shall bake your bread in one oven, and they shall deliver you your bread again by weight: and ye shall eat, and not be satisfied.

Lev. 26:27 And if ye will not for all this hearken unto me, but walk contrary unto me;

Lev. 26:28 Then I will walk contrary unto you also in fury; and I, even I, will chastise you seven times for your sins.

 

 

But, When God Is Happy With You…

 

He Will Bless You.

Psa 29:11  The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace.

Psa 115:13  He will bless them that fear the LORD, both small and great.

Supply All Your Needs.

Psa 23:1  A Psalm of David. The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He Will Bring Peace Into Your World.

Psa 23:2  He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He Will Protect You.

Rom 8:31  What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

He Will Direct Your Steps.

Pro 3:5  Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

Pro 3:6  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

He Will Heal You.

Exo 15:26  And said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee.

He Will Anoint You.

2Co 1:21  Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God;

He Will Use You.

Dan 11:32: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.

He Will Never Leave You Nor Forsake You.

Heb 13:5… for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

Your Enemies Will Make Peace With You.

Prov. 16:7 When a man’s ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.

He Will Bless Your Obedience.

Isa 1:19 If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land:

He Gets Happy When You Repent.

Luke 15:7 I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

 

If God Is Happy With You, He Can’t Do Enough for You.

Lev 26:3 If ye walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments, and do them;

Lev. 26:4 Then I will give you rain in due season, and the land shall yield her increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.

Lev. 26:5 And your threshing shall reach unto the vintage, and the vintage shall reach unto the sowing time: and ye shall eat your bread to the full, and dwell in your land safely.

Lev. 26:6 And I will give peace in the land, and ye shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid: and I will rid evil beasts out of the land, neither shall the sword go through your land.

Lev. 26:7 And ye shall chase your enemies, and they shall fall before you by the sword.

Lev. 26:8 And five of you shall chase an hundred, and an hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight: and your enemies shall fall before you by the sword.

Lev. 26:9 For I will have respect unto you, and make you fruitful, and multiply you, and establish my covenant with you.

Lev. 26:10 And ye shall eat old store, and bring forth the old because of the new.

Lev. 26:11 And I will set my tabernacle among you: and my soul shall not abhor you.

Lev. 26:12 And I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be my people.

Lev. 26:13 I am the LORD your God, which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, that ye should not be their bondmen; and I have broken the bands of your yoke, and made you go upright.

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

August 13, 2018 at 12:09 am