The Ballestero Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘The coming of the Lord

What Would Pentecostals Post On Facebook If This Were 70 Years Ago?

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What Would Pentecostals Post On Facebook If This Were 70 Years Ago?

k-bigpicI’m sure I don’t really know. It’s a crazy supposition, for certain. But what if there had been Internet and Facebook? What kind of posts would we read from friends and family in our FB news feed?

First of all, I am not sure how many would have even been on any social media. Some, in the 1940’s, regularly warned of the worldly influence of radio in Christian homes. Television was called a one-eyed monster.

Secondly, the whole world was at war. The saints of old actually believed they were living in the last days and most of them acted accordingly.

Thirdly, many of them had survived the great depression. Most had little money or possessions. Christ and the Church became the center of their lives.

With this in mind allow me to extract comments and excerpts from my family’s letters and wire recordings (Wire recorders preceded Cassette and Tape Recorders.) made during that same time frame.

I am sure they would have made the same type of affectionate greetings to family and friends.

We would have also read:

  • Victory reports of revival and new church plantings
  • Updates on our children and grand children’s lives
  • Recipes and sewing tips
  • But most assuredly, there would have been much talk about the coming of the Lord, the end time, Heaven, and the importance of being ready

Here are some comments taken from Carl Ballestero’s (my father) letters to Bro. Harvey Davis during WWII.

     1.    “I write to you, Harvey, as Jonathan would to David, with nothing but love and honor in my heart for you.  I know nothing of your failures, (I have enough of my own, for we all are unprofitable servants), but I looked for Jesus in you, and bless His dear Name, I found Him in you in a very pleasing way. It really isn’t hard to see our Jesus in one another, if we would but look for Him.

2.    “As I was sitting at the table thinking of what you said about going all out for Jesus, (you spoke my heart) and it seemed then, how few really want to see things done for God. Most people will go places for God when things are going good and when the message is popular, but only a handful are possessed with the “Jesus passions” for lost souls and genuine red-hot Holy Ghost revival fire to sweep not only their own hearts, but the whole community as well. I pray that God will give us a “go-through” spirit.

     3.    “May the Lord melt us and take away all bitterness from our hearts, for His Name’s sake.

     4.    “We’re strangers here, not wanted, not loved by man, we have a Heavenly City, not made with hands, and One ever beckons to the weary, tempted and tried pilgrims to “Come out from among them and be ye separate” for this world is not their home.

     5.    “Yes, there is hardly a preacher in Pentecost who doesn’t know how far short of the Apostolic power we are. Oh, it is true that we have the Gospel, but then too, “The letter killeth.” It is the Spirit that quickeneth, the flesh profiteth nothing.” It takes more than plain good preaching to get people saved. It takes the signs following you spoke about.

     6.    “…But then may we now say, not “Where is the God of Elijah,” but “Where is the Elijah of God.”

 

     7.    “We, as young ministers could blame the preachers before us for this pitiful state of God’s Body, (and we would not be too far from wrong for they have not been altogether blameless), but we have a wall to build, whether we are the men to do the job or not, I am certain God is pleased that the thought is in our hearts. Let us therefore set our minds to the immense task that lies before us, and consecrate, humble, deny and keep under the Blood every fiber of our being that we might be of a truth, “The apple of God’s eye.” Surely He cannot help but bless that one who has determined to make his time God’s time, who realizes that his members are God’s temple, his very life and breath, a loan from a loving Friend who sticks closer than any brother.

     8.    “I can truthfully say, that my joy is to do the will of my Father in Heaven, yes, that is also my meat, it sustains me, gives me life, for Jesus is truly the “Bread of Life.”

 

     9.    “Let us evermore come to Him that we might have life and that more abundantly. Jesus said, “Ye will not come to Me that ye might have life.” We have life from Him, Brother, but not many have that abundant life, the holy and sanctified breath of God in them that makes giants out of weaklings, that makes heroes out of cowards, that makes intercessors out of sluggards, yea, that makes mighty, prevailing, unconquerable, rugged, self-denying Gospel and Gift entrusted Christian men and women who can move the mountains of sin in the abominable generation of our day.

     10.“What then shall we do? Shall we be sorry for our faults, or defeats? No, not sorry, but rather repent. It is harder to get a Pentecostal person to repent than a rank sinner. Yes, repent and launch out into the deep, for surely hell will be full of sorry people.

     11.“Most of my time is spent in the study of God’s Word. I now am spending more time in prayer that He first might make it burn in my heart so that I can preach it from the very depths of my soul with His fire and unction. I have a wonderful book entitled “The Preacher and Prayer” by Bounds, and if I can’t find any in the bookstores, I’ll send you mine. Marvelous truth! It will fire your passion for souls and shake you into a prayerful attitude.

 

     12.“My typewriter has been in hock for a few weeks now, so that explains the pen and ink. I pawned it so that I could buy a turkey for New Year’s Day. I am sending you all the money we have, but my Father is rich, and “I shall not want”, for truly, with food and raiment, the love of God in my heart, the hunger for more of Him and for others to know Him is more than I deserve, and if I cannot say like Paul, “I have learned …” I can say “I am learning to be content in whatsoever state I am in.”

     13.“Your letter touched my heart, just made me love you so, and cry, so I just had to write you these few lines. (It doesn’t seem many to me, for they flow from my heart.) If I have ever said or done anything to harm or hinder you, please forgive me, as I do want to make Heaven my home. If I have, it was not by choice, from my head, but not my heart.

     14.“We send our love to each of you, pray daily for you.

 

     15.“Other than what I’ve mentioned, in these dark and bewildering days, all that we have to look forward to is the coming of Jesus to deliver us from this body of death. The supposedly strong ones among us have forsaken our God and their cross and left the lambs to continue on with faltering step. It seems that those who really desire to pay the price and go through must do so amidst the railings of those who make a mock of sin, who have no confidence in Christianity, (and why should they have?) Yet, still the love and the Spirit of God pulls our feet homeward, saying “This is the way, walk ye in it.”

     16.“When I listen to good preachers, I begin to wonder if I’ve missed my calling or not, but when I see the way people are failing God, and faith has vanished; when I see the holy standard of Jesus Christ dragged in the gutter, and a bunch of old reprobates who live in sin, and brag about all their wonderful results, and claim to be the “fathers” of this Jesus Name movement, I take courage and make an attempt at preaching anyway,


      17.“Lose your money, lose your reputation, lose your car and all your possessions, but don’t lose your character, don’t lose the anointing of God, don’t lose your soul

     18.“There’s no place like the everlasting arms of Jesus when one is burdened, over-weighted with much sorrow, and about ready to abandon ship.

     19.“I would rather burn out for God than rust out.

     20.“I’m praying for you almost every night without fail. Might have missed you once or twice, but you’re usually upon my heart for your love and fellowship means so much to me.

Bro. Ike Terry’s Comments To My Mother, Connie Ballestero:

  • “Sister Connie, I want to share with you a brand new One God Scripture that I found   today…”

 

Various Saints From The Bakersfield Church To My Mother:

  •  “They carried me home drunk on the Holy Ghost last night. 
  • “We had an all night prayer meeting.
  • “My husband finally got the Holy Ghost during this revival, Hallelujah!

 

  1. If any of the old saints had slipped off to a movie, or read a questionable book they would they have posted it or talked about it openly?
  2. How much Sports talk would have been posted?
  3. What photos would they post?
  4. How much flesh would be on display?
  5. How much would be written about Church, God and Christian living?

 

There would still have been fun and fellowship on the news feed of the 1940’s FB I’m sure, but I would like to think the Coming of the Lord and the End Time would have never strayed from the main focus.

Written by Martyn Ballestero

February 17, 2014 at 3:19 pm

If You Really Believed Jesus Was Coming Soon…

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If You Really Believed Jesus Was Coming Soon…

What Would You Do?

I grew up in a generation accustomed to hearing sermons about the coming of the Lord. Since I was born during World War II, my parents truly believed they were in the last days and did their best to live and pray accordingly.

My Mother said that when I was born she never dreamed the Lord would tarry long enough for me to even start Kindergarten, but that was 70 years ago.

No one knows the day or the hour that He will come again. Yet, everything within me chooses to focus on the hope that today will be the day.

When I proposed to my beloved, we settled on the date of August 28, 1965. However, within weeks of our engagement, we heard a series of sermons on the coming of the Lord. We moved our wedding up to August 14, to beat the rapture… and we did.

Desert Storm brought backsliders back by the droves. Some of them didn’t wait for the preaching, but walked straight from the door to the altar. After the scare of the war was gone, so were they.

The reality is, folks who don’t believe that the return of Jesus is imminent, have a tendency to live like He is not coming soon.

If I really believed that Jesus was coming, what would I do? How would I respond to that news?

________________________________________________________

Imagine: If the Lord loved you dearly enough to give you a private ‘heads up’ that He was coming back for His church in one week, what would you do? How would you plan each day in preparing for the rapture?

These are quite possibly some things that I would do. Not necessarily in this particular order.

________________________________________________________

 

Day One – I Would Really Repent!

The first thing I would do is repent to God for everything I have done, said, thought or felt. I would repent for my wrong spirit, my bad attitude and every thing I can think of that would be displeasing to the Lord.

·      I wouldn’t just pray, I would pray through.

·      I mean really pray through.

·      Not just a two-dollar tune-up but rather a complete major over haul.

When I finished, I would look in my mirror and see if I could find anything about the way I looked or the way I dressed that was displeasing to Him. I would make sure that my body was not adorned with things the Bible warned me about that would keep me from going up.

·      I would walk through my house and remove anything and everything that had a carnal base or worldly flavor and influence upon it.

·      I would make sure that every music album in my house would be something He would approve of.

·      I would not want any thing in my house that I would not want Jesus to see or hear.

·      I would clean my closet and remove anything I would not want to be wearing when Jesus came.

·      I would look at my magazines and books.

·      If I found anything that I didn’t want to be in my hand when the rapture took place, I would throw away.

I Would Repent. I Mean, Really Repent… Jesus Is Coming!

 

Day Two – I Would Apologize To My Brother And Sister In Christ!

·      I would quit fighting with my brother and sincerely apologize.

·      Even if I thought he was the one that should be apologizing first.

·      I would choose not to be offended any more.

·      I would ask him to forgive me for everything I had done and said.

And, if I had taken anything from him, I would restore it and pay extra for damages and them give him the Biblically required usury.

·      I would tell him that I loved him.

·      I would strive for unity in the Body of Christ.

I Would Want To Love My Neighbor As Myself… Jesus Is Coming!

 

Day Three – I Would Consecrate Like Never Before

·      I would surrender my will to His Will.

·      I would humble myself before the Lord.

·      I would pray, not my will but Thine be done.

·      I would no longer have a problem with Pastoral authority.

·      I would ask my pastor if he saw anything in me I needed to change or improve before the Lord came.

·      I would no longer have a problem with Doctrine.

·      I would no longer have a problem with Holiness Standards.

·      I would make sure that my attitude towards the things of God was right.

I Want My Heart To Be Right… Jesus Is Coming!

 

Day Four – I Would Focus On My Church Attendance

·      I would make sure I made it to the mid-week services.

·      I would get there early for prayer.

·      I would sit as close to the front as I could.

·      I would worship like I never had before.

·      I would sing with all my heart.

·      I would sing loud and clap my hands and say Amen.

·      During the invitation, I would come to the altar and pray with seekers.

·      I would even ask if I could sing in the choir. (I would like to be singing in the choir when the Lord comes.)

I Would Put My Heart Into Having Church… Jesus Is Coming!

 

Day Five – I Would Gather My Family Around Me

I would apologize and express my love to my spouse. I would speak gentle and loving to the members of my home.

·      I would apologize for all the arguments and harsh words that caused hurt feelings.

·      I would apologize to my children.

·      I would apologize to my parents.

·      I would apologize to my siblings.

·      I would apologize to my in-laws.

·      I would adjust my grumpy attitude.

I Would Wrap My Family Up In Love… Jesus Is Coming!

 

Day Six – I Would Have A Financial Review

·      I would go through my bills and make sure they were paid.

·      I would look at my Pay Check Stubs and my W-2’s and then look in my check book to make sure I was current with my tithes and offerings.

If Not, I Would Catch Up and Add The Biblically Required Twenty Percent To My Tithe… Jesus Is Coming!

 

Day Seven – I Would Wake Up In A Panic Thinking About The Lost!

At daybreak I would be at my friend’s house inviting myself to teach him a home Bible Study.

I would scramble around all day looking for every relative I could talk to and every acquaintance doing my best to talk to them about the coming of the Lord.

I Would Try To Take Everyone I Could To Heaven With Me… Jesus Is Coming!

____________________________________________________

So… What would you do if you believed Jesus was coming? Would you change anything about the way you live, talk, think, act, dress or believe?

Would you correct the things in your life that need correcting?

Would you do everything in your power to be ready for That Day?

Then Just Do It. He Really Is Coming!

Written by Martyn Ballestero

February 8, 2014 at 10:04 am

You Are Here

with 5 comments

You Are Here

Have you ever stopped in a new mall and looked at the directory to orient yourself? That is basically what I am intending to do today with some of our current events and the Word of the Lord.

These really are the last days. All we have to do is look around and we see Bible prophecy fulfilled in our newspapers and most of our churches.

There are many more references than I have the time or space to list, but here are few that are worthy of note.

2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

2 Timothy 4:4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

For the time will come

  • Not endure sound doctrine
  • Itching Ears
  • They only want to hear what they want to hear.
  • They will go from preacher to preacher looking for an easy Gospel.
  • Their lives will become a ‘fable’ (fiction)

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

2Ti 3:1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

2Ti 3:2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

2Ti 3:3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

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.

Last Days

  • Perilous Times
  • Blasphemers, Unthankful,
  • Disobedient to Parents
  • Unholy
  • Without natural affection
  • Can’t keep their word.
  • False accusers.
  • Lives out of control
  • Fierce
  • Despisers of those that are living right.
  • Traitors
  • Unteachable
  • Arrogant
  • Lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God.
  • Have a form of godliness.
  • Denying the power therof.

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

2Pet 3:3 Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,

Last Days

  • Scoffers
  • Living to please self.

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

Mt 24:3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

Mt 24:6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

Mt 24:7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.

Below are some conditions in the world that are current as of March 14, 2011.

Current Armed Conflicts In World Today

“The following table shows where wars and armed conflicts are raging throughout the world in 2010. Find the year that war began and the major warring parties involved by region of conflict, including the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America.” (Quoted from “Infoplease”)

Read more: Significant Ongoing Armed Conflicts, 2010 — Infoplease.com http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0904550.html#ixzz1GfyV5q5I



Earth Quakes Per Year

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eqarchives/year/eqstats.php

Earthquakes Last 7 Days

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/recenteqsww/

Famines In World Today

http://www.mapreport.com/century/subtopics/d/0.html

Pestilence In World Today

http://barrybrumfield.com/prophecy/end_times/pestilence.htm

Mt 24:33 So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.

Mt 24:34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

This Generation shall not pass

Lk 21:11 And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven.

Lk 21:17 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake.

Lk 21:20 And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

Lk 21:24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

Lk 21:25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;

Lk 21:26 Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.

  • Fear sights and great signs from heaven.
  • Hated of all men for His Name sake.
  • Jerusalem compassed with armies.
  • Signs in the sun, moon and stars
  • Distress of nations with perplexity
  • Tsunami – sea and waves roaring

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

Mt 24:37 But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

Mt 24:38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,

Mt 24:39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

WE WOULD BE CRAZY TO PLAY AROUND WITH GOD NOW.

THESE ARE THE END TIMES.

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!


Now For They Good News!!!

Jesus In The Synagogue

Lk 4:16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.

Lk 4:17 And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,

Lk 4:18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,

Lk 4:19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.

Lk 4:20 And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.

Lk 4:21 And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.

Jesus was saying to His generation,

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

Peter Preached On The Day Of Pentecost:

Acts 2:12 And they were all amazed, and were in doubt, saying one to another, What meaneth this?

Acts 2:13 Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.

Acts 2:14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:

Acts 2:15 For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.

Acts 2:16 But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;

Acts 2:17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:

Peter Said, “This Is That” Which Was Prophesied:

He was saying:

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

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 2:39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

Today Is The Day Of Salvation

THIS IS NO LONGER PROPHECY, YOU ARE HERE!

The Out-Pouring of the Holy Ghost is no longer Prophecy. You Are Here!!


Written by Martyn Ballestero

March 15, 2011 at 11:37 am