Saturday, 23 November 2019

He has Crossed

I was reading Joshua recently how the Lord crossed over Jordan with the Ark of the Covenant, and this poem came to mind.

He has Crossed

He has crossed the Jordan,
Forded the flow,
He has gone before
To where I’m called to go.
Should the Way be rugged
And the path be steep,
No mountain is too hard to climb,
No water is too deep.

He has crossed the River
Forded o’er the flood
And my trust is only
In His atoning blood.

For I know there’s nowhere
Where my Lord’s not been,
There is no depth of suffering
That Jesus has not seen.
He will ne’er abandon
The one who is His own,
Although He was forsaken,
He leaves me not alone.

He has crossed the River
Forded o’er the flood
And my trust is only
In His atoning blood.

No sin He did not die for,
No sadness He can’t share,

No hidden place He has not seen;

Jesus has been there.

He has not forgotten -
He will not forget;

All the Law’s conditions
By Jesus have been met.

He has crossed the River
Forded o’er the flood
And my trust is only
In His atoning blood.



Sunday, 3 November 2019

Isn't it shocking how much of the New Testament we use as a rule book when what the Lord wants is for us to truly sit at His feet and listen to Him? Do we refuse to do this because it's easier to read what the letter says than wait for the still, small voice speaking His Rhema and then obey?

How many times have we shut our ears from hearing His Voice speaking to us personally, because we would rather fill our minds with knowledge from the Bible, when this has never really changed us internally? I know I have - countless times. This has been my journey for the last three years. It is still ongoing and will most likely never alter. There is so much to unlearn. May He give us His grace. 

Monday, 26 August 2019

A number of years ago, I had the privilege of teaching at a school of ministry. My students were hungry for God, and I was constantly searching for ways to challenge them to fall more in love with Jesus and to become voices for revival in the Church. I came across a quote attributed most often to Rev. Sam Pascoe. It is a short version of the history of Christianity, and it goes like this:

“Christianity started in Palestine as a fellowship; it moved to Greece and became a philosophy; it moved to Italy and became an institution; it moved to Europe and became a culture; it came to America and became an enterprise.”

Some of the students were only 18 or 19 years old–barely out of diapers–and I wanted them to understand and appreciate the import of the last line, so I clarified it by adding, “An enterprise. That’s a business.”

After a few moments Martha, the youngest student in the class, raised her hand. I could not imagine what her question might be. I thought the little vignette was self-explanatory, and that I had performed it brilliantly. Nevertheless, I acknowledged Martha’s raised hand, “Yes, Martha.”

She asked such a simple question, “A business? But isn’t it supposed to be a body?” I could not envision where this line of questioning was going, and the only response I could think of was, “Yes.” She continued, “But when a body becomes a business, isn’t that a prostitute?”

The room went dead silent. For several seconds no one moved or spoke. We were stunned, afraid to make a sound because the presence of God had flooded into the room, and we knew we were on holy ground. All I could think in those sacred moments was, “Wow, I wish I’d thought of that.” I didn’t dare express that thought aloud. God had taken over the class.

Martha’s question changed my life. For six months, I thought about her question at least once every day. “When a body becomes a business, isn’t that a prostitute?” There is only one answer to her question. The answer is “Yes.” The American Church, tragically, is heavily populated by people who do not love God. How can we love Him? We don’t even know Him; and I mean really know Him.

… I stand by my statement that most American Christians do not know God–much less love Him. The root of this condition originates in how we came to God. Most of us came to Him because of what we were told He would do for us. We were promised that He would bless us in life and take us to heaven after death. We married Him for His money, and we don’t care if He lives or dies as long as we can get His stuff. We have made the Kingdom of God into a business, merchandising His anointing. This should not be. We are commanded to love God, and are called to be the Bride of Christ–that’s pretty intimate stuff. We are supposed to be His lovers. How can we love someone we don’t even know? And even if we do know someone, is that a guarantee that we truly love them? Are we lovers or prostitutes?

I was pondering Martha’s question again one day, and considered the question, “What’s the difference between a lover and a prostitute?” I realized that both do many of the same things, but a lover does what she does because she loves. A prostitute pretends to love, but only as long as you pay. Then I asked the question, “What would happen if God stopped paying me?”

For the next several months, I allowed God to search me to uncover my motives for loving and serving Him. Was I really a true lover of God? What would happen if He stopped blessing me? What if He never did another thing for me? Would I still love Him? Please understand, I believe in the promises and blessings of God. The issue here is not whether God blesses His children; the issue is the condition of my heart. Why do I serve Him? Are His blessings in my life the gifts of a loving Father, or are they a wage that I have earned or a bribe/payment to love Him? Do I love God without any conditions? It took several months to work through these questions. Even now I wonder if my desire to love God is always matched by my attitude and behavior. I still catch myself being disappointed with God and angry that He has not met some perceived need in my life. I suspect this is something which is never fully resolved, but I want more than anything else to be a true lover of God.

So what is it going to be? Which are we, lover or prostitute? There are no prostitutes in heaven, or in the Kingdom of God for that matter, but there are plenty of former prostitutes in both
places. Take it from a recovering prostitute when I say there is no substitute or unconditional, intimate relationship with God. And I mean there is no palatable substitute available to us (take another look at Matthew 7:21-23 sometime). We must choose.

-Dr. David Ryser.

Friday, 26 July 2019

We Don't Know How to Pray

 About 30 years ago when I was working in a mission organisation; I remember being asked to talk to a group about intercessory prayer. I was pretty proud that I had been asked. I spent days searching the Bible for everything about prayer and wrote a long essay, incorporating information about the Hebrew and Greek, different biblical situations - I can't remember much now - and I'm sure that those who were subjected to the 3 hour lecture can remember nothing but how theoretical, lifeless and boring it was. Afterwards when I asked how it had come across, the person who had asked me to speak was too nice to tell me the truth. It was an indication of how knowledge puffs up, and how little I really prayed.

Although I have seen God answering prayer,  I've mostly experienced how God doesn't answer - at least, not in the way I think He will.

Recently I read something - a fictional account of how believers prayed in a certain situation. The author wrote as if demonstrating how 'people who know their God and do exploits,' should pray. The characters were experienced, passionate, committed believers. The way the story was written implied that this is how everyone should pray. I'm not necessarily knocking this, but my experience has been the opposite.

Very often, I come face to face with the reality that I don't know how or what to pray. A few nights ago the temperature was too hot to make sleeping easy, and I lay awake, thinking ... Thinking about my children, various different situations, people in my life ... I felt as if I ought to know how to pray, but I didn't.

Practically speaking, how can I possibly know how to pray? I am earthly, weak, limited, clueless.
So I sat in the dark, at the end of the bed, and prayed silently in tongues. Nothing. I heard nothing. I had no clue how to pray. For a moment I felt bad about it, but then the scripture came to my mind, 'for we do not know how to pray as we ought,' (Romans 8:27). I thought - 'Well! And here are so many of us, myself included, who think we know how to pray, when we don't. Then we're in good company. Paul didn't know how to pray either.'
I just had these few words. So I hung on to them, and continued to pray in tongues for about 30 minutes.

After a while,  something began to lift ... I began to see who Jesus is again, saw that He is able to save and cleanse and deliver. Everything is based on His work. His blood covers me. He is my righteousness. Praise started to well up, and I was simply able, without lots of words, to bring all the people and situations to Him and leave them with Him, sure that He knew better than I did what to do. Peace and quiet returned.

The only prayer which is effective is that which comes via the Holy Spirit, from Jesus, because He is the Son of the Father, at the right hand of the Father,  who only does what the Father tells Him; the High Priest, who knows how to make intercession for us. This is no theological theory - it's practical reality.

Thursday, 20 June 2019

The ARK and the BLOOD The Discovery of the Ark of the Covenant

Please click on the linked heading.

This seems to me to be a helpful summary of Ron Wyatt's discovery of the Ark of the Covenant. The only thing I would mention is that because of Ron's background as a Seventh Day Adventist, the video presentation seems to emphasise the necessity of keeping the Law of YHWH, which is supposed to endow upon the believer the 'seal of God' - ie. His approval. 

It cannot be said strongly enough that no man can keep the Law of God, and the blood of Yeshua ha Meshiach (Jesus the Messiah) was and is the only thing which can atone for sin, past, present and future. Yeshua is the only Son of Man Who ever had the approval of God, and all those who are in Messiah are therefore automatically sealed with the seal of God. Trying to keep the Law by man's own effort is impossible, and brings death. Yeshua, however, kept the Law perfectly, and it is because of His perfect righteousness that those who put their faith in Him receive, through the power of the Holy Spirit, the free gift of righteousness, and His approval, APART from the Law, by GRACE alone.

Tuesday, 25 December 2018

Where was our Lord Jesus born? Not where the masses think.

 For all those who detest the hype about the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, and the way it has been, as always happens with religion, hijacked for political purposes. Jesus was not born where everyone think He was, just as He wasn't born WHEN everyone thinks He was. He has never had anything to do with the way the World thinks and never will. Jeremiah 10:2: 'This is what the LORD says: Do not learn the way of the nations.'

This is a wonderful post about the probable location of Yeshua/Jesus's birth.

Alfred Edersheim wrote 'The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah', in 1883.

In his book, he quotes the prophet Micah:
Micah 4:8.  “And thou, O tower of the flock  the strong hold of the daughter of Zion, unto thee shall it come, even the first dominion; the kingdom shall come to the daughter of Jerusalem.”
showing that the 'tower of the flock',  (Hebrew, 'Migdal Eder') near Bethlehem, was the place where Messiah would first be revealed to Israel and the world.

Its location today has been competently demonstrated here. 

It is wonderful to me that the Tower of the Flock was the place, supervised by the Temple shepherds, to which the newborn lambs were brought, for inspection, before being permitted for Temple sacrifice. 

Sunday, 4 November 2018

Abuse in Churches

I could never have imagined that I would hear a story with so many similarities to my own. Thank God for the courage of these women to speak out, despite the fear, shame and guilt. May the Lord bring us all healing, even though the 'churches' we belonged to, shun us and believe our abusers. 
'God knows the truth, but waits.' (Tolstoy)

Only the individual heart knows its own pain, suffering, sorrow and joy - no other can truly understand it (Proverbs 14:10), and we have to bring everything to Jesus,
because He alone is here, has infinite time, and patience, and love.

The eternal God is your refuge,
    and underneath are the everlasting arms.
He will drive out your enemies before you,
    saying, ‘Destroy them!’ (Deuteronomy 33:27)