Saturday, March 3, 2012

When the LION Roars

Can two walk together, except they be agreed?...Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.
Amos 3:3 & 7

There are literally hundreds of Christians who are trying to get the attention of both unbelievers and nominal believers alike.  The message is the same, Jesus is coming soon so prepare your heart.  A large part of that message is wrapped around the coming of Jacob's Trouble.  The time of justice against sin is around the corner but most will not heed the message.  Furthermore, those sharing the news or striving for deeper devotion to Christ are ridiculed and mocked.  If you don't see this, go to any Youtube channel that is teaching on prophesy and current events. Read through the comments section--if you dare!

This is the same situation that Amos, the first writing prophet, is addressing sometime near 760 BC.  The nation of Israel was committing gross sin while still claiming a privileged status as the people of God.  Their immorality was disgusting to the LORD as was their heartless worship.  They had a shell of religion that made allowances for sin and injustice in the land.  God never grants privileged status to sin blatantly ever; therefore, we need to live meekly and humbly at the foot of the cross!  To make it worse, they refused to heed the prophets and attempted to lead those striving for holiness into sin.  "But ye gave the Nazarites wine to drink; and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not" (Amos 2:12). "They hate him that rebuketh in the gate, and they abhor him that speaketh uprightly (Amos 5:10)."

After reminding Israel of God's mercy and grace in choosing them to be His people, Amos, under the Holy Spirit's unction, asks a series of questions in chapter three that reveal God is fed up and about to strike as a Lion.  Before we go to those questions; remember, God is love!  The heart of the Gospel of Christ is love for fallen man.  Yet, if sin is not dealt with at the cross, if it is not repented of, if it is ignored or justified, and it is not cleansed by faith in the blood of Jesus then God will eventually in love bring justice in the hope of redemption.  You must  deal with sin at the cross of Christ the Lamb or risk seeing Christ the Lion.  He paid too great a price to mock and ignore His sacrifice.

The Rhetorical questions begin with a query about two walking in agreement.  God is saying that the prophets walk in agreement with me.  Therefore, their message is not their own--it is mine!  In verse 7, He reminds that He has chosen to reveal what is about to happen to those in close fellowship with Him.  

This is the same scenario currently seen.  God is speaking to those who will take time to fellowship with Him, to pray, and to listen.  Like ancient Israel, however, most are not heeding the message to deal with sin and injustice in the land.  Are they members of the Laodicean Church which thinks it is in fellowship with God while it is not? It is a rich church who thinks its "blessings" are proof of that fellowship.  It is increased with goods and filled with meaningless worship (worship as entertainment like Amos addresses) while Christ stands outside attempting to get its attention.  It is the church that will be snared to the ground, vomited at the rapture, like a bird caught in a trap.  Trappers do not set traps for no reason. (See Amos 3:5--"Can a bird fall in a snare upon the earth, where no gin is for him? shall one take up a snare from the earth, and have taken nothing at all?)

Amos began his work with a sobering thought.  The LORD was roaring. We again see the allusion to God as the lion began in the first chapter now in chapter three.  "Will a lion roar in the forest, when he hath no prey? will a young lion cry out of his den, if he have taken nothing (Amos 3:4)?"  God has his prey in sight.  It is the unrepentant.  He has warned and plead and called and cried for truth, but the apathetic are not heeding the alarm.  "Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid (3:6a)?"  Of course people react to an alarm, but the majority are not reacting to it.  They are ignoring God's roar.  The young lions, God's preachers, can sense the kill ahead so they too roar from the den, yet they are not heeded either.  Rather, they are ridiculed and mocked further angering the Great Lion.  Therefore, the LORD will bring calamity with the hopes of repentance and redemption.  "Shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD hath not done it (Amos 3:6b)?"

"The lion hath roared, who will not fear? the Lord GOD hath spoken, who can but prophesy?"  The LORD is roaring and His servants can do nothing but share His message.  Can you hear the roaring of the LION of Judah?  Do not wait until the Lamb turns Lion--repent today and call on the Name of the LORD.  All who do so will be saved, but do it quickly as He is Soon2Come!

And he said, The LORD will roar from Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the habitations of the shepherds shall mourn, and the top of Carmel shall wither.
Amos 1:2

Dedicated to a Young Lion who has roared bravely from the den.  Fear not, the Great Lion will avenge you Pastor Nadarkhani.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Jesus Loves You--Life, Alone, Is In His Blood!

"For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people, Saying, This is the blood of the testament which God hath enjoined unto you. Moreover he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle, and all the vessels of the ministry. And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission."
Hebrews 9:19-22

It was the late 1700s before brilliant minds began to discover oxygen's importance to burning or oxidizing.  The discovery that oxygen is transported to every cell via blood cells followed.  Oxidation is needed so that the body can burn energy that is also provided through the circulatory system. It would also be found that the needs of every cell for anything vital to life is provided by blood flow. Furthermore, the body relies on blood circulation to carry away waste products in order to prevent deadly pollution in the body.  Life really is in the blood.  Of course, those who knew the Torah/Pentateuch would have known this long before science proved it because it is clearly stated in the text.  "For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul."  Leviticus 17:11

Blood is vital for the soul of man or woman.  Is this not what is stated in the verse above?  IT was the very creator of blood who breathed life into humanity that also said that there is no spiritual life except through a blood sacrifice.  Just to be sure that Israel got it, GOD had Moses state it again, "For it is the life of all flesh; the blood of it is for the life thereof...(Leviticus 17:14a).  What would happen to a physical body were the blood drained?  That is an answer that everyone seems to know--death.  Now, if God stated that blood was needed for the soul's atonement, what happens to a bloodless religion?  Death!  Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin.  Spiritual death, eternal separation from God follows just as assuredly as a bleeding body dies from exsanguination.

While studying the Book of Amos today, I went to investigate a term in a popular commentary.  In essence, some argue that Amos was only preaching a social gospel--one where social justice and good deeds alone reign supreme.  This commentary was exposing that false notion.  Yet, it is a popular idea, nonetheless.  If we will be good to each other, and do good to those around us, surely God will allow us access into His presence!  Will HE?  Morality cannot save!  Moreover, a Christless morality destroys while giving the illusion of goodness because it lacks one vital, life giving component--the Blood of God's only acceptable sacrifice.

Why does the Bible say that there is no salvation outside of Jesus Christ?  Because it was He alone who shed the blood required to save the soul.  All sacrifices in the Old Testament attest to the need for blood to save, and they all, ALL, foreshadow the shedding of the blood of Jesus Christ at Mount Calvary.  There is no other salvation because no other but Jesus met the absolutely perfect requirements to be the atonement.  Sin is an affront to an eternal GOD.  The penalty of sin against GOD is equally eternal.  It took the blood, then, of something eternal to negate and atone for sin.  Jesus is just that.  He is man/God in one.  He is the bridge between lost humanity and holy God!  Just as the blood of all physical mankind came from Adam, the blood of all spiritual mankind comes through Christ, the spiritual Adam. Salvation comes through trusting by faith in the grace God gives to humanity through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.  "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)

Take time to consider the ramifications of the following verses:

"But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ." Ephesians 2:13

"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;" Romans 3:23-25

"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."  Acts 4:12

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

It is absolutely clear that there is no life without the blood.  Your body would die as it cannot release its toxins nor receive vital nutrients.  It is just as obvious that you do not have eternal life no matter how good or how religious you are unless you have the blood of Jesus Christ which alone removes the toxin of sin and and brings the life giving promises of GOD in and through Christ.  If you find yourself undone before God today, call on Jesus and ask Him to allow the blessings of heaven to graciously circulate from heaven into your life.  Do it quickly!  Truly Jesus is Soon2Come!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Beware the Mark: An Eternal Decision

And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
Revelation 19:20

It is one of the most ominous warnings in the entire Bible.  On the day that one accepts the mark promoted by the False Prophet thus showing allegiance to the Antichrist, and ultimately Satan, an eternal decision will be made that cannot be reversed.  There is no repeal, no reprieve, no second chance.  The decision is final.  Consequently, even  some of the judgments of the Wrath of God are reserved specifically for those aligning themselves against the gospel of Jesus Christ.  It is important to understand that Jesus will not return as the meek and lowly crucified Savior of Mount Calvary; no, He is returning as the Lion of Judah, Captain of the LORD's hosts and in righteousness He does judge and make war.  

And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.
Revelation 16:2

God is loving.  Furthermore, He is the God of the second, third, and even fourth chances.  Wouldn't you agree?  It was Jesus who taught us about "seventy times seven" was it not? So what changes with the acceptance of the mark that forces severe justice on all who receive it?  At this point, I would like to propose one possibility.  It is one that I balked at but actually began to study at length later.  During the 1980s, Mary K. Baxter wrote a popular yet controversial work called A Divine Revelation of Hell.  One of the visions she was given was that the Antichrist was able to erase the brain.  Later, The Left Behind Series and other works also included this as a means of destroying the ability to individually repent.  After reading the works of other writers over the years, I felt that I had to investigate this myself.  Having been an educator with many courses on the brain, how it learns, and current research in brain mapping, what I found is a distinct possibility that this just might be the case--the brain of the recipient of the mark may be altered in such a way as to forever mar the ability to repent and trust Christ.  The very thought is horrid!

Brain Mapping During Prayer

Before you scoff, consider Satan's ego.  He wishes to be like God as the scriptures plainly teach.  "I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High (Isaiah 14:14)."  Jesus taught that individuals need to be born again in John 3.  Truly, trusting Christ as Savior forever changes an individual.  Furthermore, believers are said to receive a "down payment" on their trust by having the presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives (Romans 8:18-30, 2 Cor. 1:22, 5:5, Eph. 1:13-14).  The change that Christ brings to those trusting in faith is absolutely amazing.  Is the devil also trying to mimic salvation?  Is he giving a second birth of demonic origin that is negatively altering those who trust his Antichrist?  Interesting questions to say the least!  

A Common Neuron (Brain Cell)

Brain mapping was made possible with the invention and use of Magnetic Resonance Imaging.  When we think, act, or use our brain in any way, the neurons (brain cells) "fire" and a charge is sent along a conductive fiber line known as a axon.  At the end of each axon are small terminal fibers that send that impulse to little lines or fibers, dendrites, around the next neuron cell body.  Let's say that you are doing a math problem while the MRI is monitoring the brain, the region of the brain "lights up" showing which area of the brain is being used to solve the problem.  Repeated mapping of this "math region" implies that this is where math reasoning originates.  Ironically, there has been a lot of research into what areas of the brain control spirituality using this method.  Furthermore, the ability to stop the neurons from firing (essentially erasing a control region of the brain) also exists.  Again, could this be the reason that accepting the mark forever changes ones ability to seek God?  Is it possible that some sort of technology reprograms or erases the mind of those who live during this frightening time?

The Region of the Brain Mapped As the Spiritual Center

There is an escape!  His name is Jesus.  There is a promise for those who wholeheartedly seek Him that they will be kept from this hour of Tribulation.  So what is your choice?  Make the right one, as I don't wish for anyone to be on earth at this time to see if this is a correct interpretation.  Remember, not taking the mark means martyrdom during that time in the Tribulation.  If you cannot live for Jesus today, how will you die for Him then?  I guess the answer is always the same, by grace.  Choose that grace now and spare yourself as Jesus Christ is Soon2Come!

The Brain During Worship

And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
Revelation 20:4

Mind Altering Technology--Not a Fantasy
Prune bad brain wiring with magnetic pulses - health - 18 February 2012 - New Scientist  In other words, prune, as in cut, the undesirable dendritic connections to ERASE memories.