Endurance

Matthew 24:12, 13 “Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved.”

Jesus promised that the world will grow darker and more wicked the closer it gets to His return. The hearts of many will grow cold, people will betray each other, even family members betraying one another; drugs, violence, lust and hate will all increase, and God will even send a strong delusion upon the earth so that those who do not want to believe the truth can hang themselves upon the gallows of deception. It is because of these things that there will be a great falling away from the faith, before the return of the King of all Kings, Jesus Christ (2 Thessalonians 2:3).

Now, although these will be days of great darkness, darker than anytime that has ever been, there is a powerful ray of hope that shines forth from the promises of our Lord Jesus Christ, “My sheep hear My voice and I know them and they follow Me; and I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish, neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand..” (John 10:27-28). You see it was not by your power that you were born, nor by your power that you were born again. It is because of God that you were drawn to Him, it was God that intervened into your sinful life and called you.. you simply responded to His call. It was by His grace that you were saved by the faith that He gave you, and Jesus says that He is able to keep to the uttermost the life that you have entrusted to Him; no one is able to snatch you out of His hand.

With such wonderful assurance as this, we can surly have hope of enduring till the end. The key is in making sure that your heart has been given completely to your Master. For if you came to Jesus in full surrender, giving Him your life and your dreams, your heart, mind, body and soul, then when you are presented with the question, “do you also want to leave Me?” you will answer with Peter, “where else will we go Lord, You have the words of eternal life!” (John 6:68). It is to the glory of God that He leaves His children in this crooked world, so that we may endure all things, and shine as the stars of heaven, standing fast in Him and being a witness to all of His matchless power. So stand fast in His word and build your life upon the Rock who is Christ, for none can snatch you out of His hand!

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True Love

True Love

1 John 4:8

“He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”

What is love? Today’s miss conception of love is a vise by which sinners and professing Christians may live as they please, while believing that God is ok with their sin because He is love; So let us look closely at God, who is love, to see how He lived when among us.

Jesus was moved with compassion continually, and fed the hungry, clothed the naked, cast out demons and healed the sick; all of which a Christian should practice. He spent much of His time teaching people the word, loudly no doubt because thousands of people had to hear His messages. Therefore preaching loudly in public is not hateful, unless the content and spirit of the message are hateful. Unfortunately there will always be those people who do preach with hatred, telling people that God hates them and calling them whores etc. That is a grievous evil and makes it harder for preachers of the gospel because we get judged with the same label for simply following in Jesus’ footsteps.

Does being gentle and loving mean we must always speak softly? Was Jesus loving when He called the Pharisees “sons of hell” (Matthew 23:15)? Was John the Baptist loving when he called the Pharisees a “brood of vipers” (Matthew 3:7)? Yes they were, because sometimes “open rebuke is better than hidden love” (Proverbs 27:5), and sometimes love means “pulling people from the fire” (Jude 23) as Jude puts it. Some people need a strong loving rebuke to shake them to their senses, so they may escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will. This in no way gives us the license to be reckless with our words, but we must always operate in humility, being guided by the Holy Spirit.

God is patient by allowing a sinful world to continue so that some might be saved, and He is kind by warning us of judgment so we may flee from the wrath to come (Luke 3:7). Personally I have never used the severest threatenings of God’s word in the quantity that Jesus and the apostles did, maybe to my detriment (Peter 2:4- 6; Peter 3: 5-7; Rev. 21:8; Rev. 14:10, 11; Rev. 6:16; Daniel 12:2; Matt. 24:51; Matt. 25:46; Luke 3:17; Rom. 2:8, 9; 2 Thess. 1:9; Jude vs 7, 13). Perhaps I have not warned enough.

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It is imperative that we not remove the harder things of Scripture from our messages, for in doing so we are telling God we are wiser than Him. God is holy and must punish sin, and it will be severe; just look at the cross. We must preach heaven and we must preach hell, we must tell of grace and we must warn of wrath, we must preach of righteousness and we must preach of sin, we must preach repentance toward God and faith towards the Lord Jesus Christ. In failing to do so we are being unfaithful to preach the whole counsel of God, and will have the blood of many on our hands. Fear God! If you really believe the Scriptures, you will warn people; if you don’t believe them, you will argue with those who are warning people.

In the end, the only loving thing to do, once the reality of eternity has gripped your heart and the urgency of God has been laid upon you, is to cast off your own pursuit, set aside your personal agenda and live to seek and save the lost. For if you still live in complacency, comfort and pleasure, how does the love of God abide in you?

Web: www.jonnyfivealive.wix.com/pyroounderground

Home Church: www.goodfight.org

Billy Graham “Unless we believe in a future judgment, the cutting edge of evangelism is blunted.”

Tithing- the Final Frontier

Tithing- The Final Frontier

“It has been said that the wallet is the ‘final frontier.’ It is often the final area to be conquered- the last thing that we surrender to God. Jesus spoke much about money. He said that we cannot serve God and mammon (Matthew 6:24). ‘Mammon’ was the common Aramaic word for riches, which is related to a Hebrew word signifying ‘that which is to be trusted.’ In other words, we cannot trust both God and money. Either money is our source of joy, our great love, our sense of security, the supplier of our needs- or God is.

When you open your purse or wallet, give generously and regularly to your local Church. A guide to how much you should give can be found in the ‘tithe’ of the Old Testament: 10 percent of your income. Whatever amount you give, make sure you give something to the work of God (see Mal. 3:8- 11). Give because you want to, not because you have to. God loves a cheerful giver (2 Cor. 9:6, 7), so learn to hold your money with a loose hand.”

Ray Comfort

Evidence Bible, page 1413

The Lips of the Righteous

The Lips of the Righteous

Proverbs 10:11

“The mouth of the righteous is a well of life, but violence covers the mouth of the wicked.”

Repeatedly in Proverbs we see the use of antonyms; the foolish and the wise, the righteous and the wicked, the lazy and the diligent, and a mouth that speaks life or death. Just as a spring of water does not bring forth fresh water and bitter from the same opening, so our mouth should not speak blessing and cursing towards others. It is not becoming of a righteous person to speak wickedly, for it defiles his nature and stains his character.

You can learn a lot about a person by what comes out of their mouth, for Jesus Himself said to the Pharisees, “Brood of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. (Matthew 12:34)” Now no man can tame the tongue completely (James 3:8), for we all stumble in word sometimes, but what a person talks about most is what is stored up in their heart. If a person loves the world and the lusts of it, they will talk most about that, and will do it with enthusiasm. But if a person is converted and now loves Jesus Christ, filling themselves with His word, then out of their mouth will come life. It will be a joy to speak of the things of God.

So let us be filled richly with God’s word so we can be a well of life to others. Let your mouth be used to bring people to Jesus, to disperse truth on the earth and to declare the praises of the living God. Let your life be like a well, causing people to come to you, drawing truth and life from your lips. May they find strength as you speak of His promises, proclaiming hope in a lost and dying world. Just as water gives life to the body, let your words bring light and counsel to others, filling them with wisdom from heaven.

Press On!

Press On!
Philippians 3:12
“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me.”
As a Christian, you often feel like you don’t have it all together. If you truly walk with God and desire to please Him, you will find yourself continuing to see things in your life that are displeasing to you. A great preacher once said, “The more holy you become, the more unholy you realize you still are.” And that is so true, but do not be discouraged dear brother and sister, for even Paul the apostle, that great pillar of our faith, confessed that he has not yet obtained perfection, but he pressed on towards the goal, and that is what we must do beloved, press on towards Jesus.
Peter tells us that God’s divine power has given us everything that we need to live a godly life, through the knowledge of Jesus Chris who called us (2 Peter 2:3). So seek to know Him more, and do not give up. Continue to grow in your knowledge of the Most High, and draw near to Him with a humble heart. God has given every Christian the power to live for Him.
Remember this beautiful fact: that if God did not spare His own Son, but gave Him up for us all, why would He not, with Jesus, also freely give us all things (Romans 8:32)? For He has already given you the most precious gift He can give, His only begotten Son, so He will not stop helping you now. No, God will finish the work that He started in you (Philippians 1:6), beloved of God, so be sure of that. His love for you is not dependent upon your ability to be perfect, but is because He chooses to love you regardless; For truly, none of us deserves His love.
So find strength in understanding God’s nature, and learn the riches that He has bestowed upon you in Christ. Know that if God is with you, He will never leave you nor forsake you, even if all others do. Learn the great and precious promises that He has given you, and stand upon them my friend; press on, and lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus laid hold of you!
With love, Jonathan Ball
http://www.goodfight.org/
http://www.jonnyfivealive.wix.com/pyroounderground

Proclaiming the Gospel of Everlasting Life!

Proclaiming the Gospel of Everlasting Life!

Mark 16:15

“And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.’”

We all have many ideas about Scripture and how we think it should be walked out, but what we need most is to learn what Jesus did and follow in His footsteps. There are different ministries, a diversity of gifts and activities, but the same Spirit works them all to further God’s kingdom on earth (1 Corinthians 12:4- 7). Whatever area God has called a person, we must all work together to fulfill the Great Commission.

The other day as the Lord led me to go preach the gospel in Huntington, I saw a big group of Christians huddled together near where I was. They were part of an outreach and all had the same shirts on. As I was preaching, I decided to stop and speak to them to explain myself, for I know what the modern Church thinks of such speaking. It is often looked at as judgmental and unloving, and I agree some preachers are, but not all. So I explained myself and took them through Scripture to show them why I preached this way. Then I asked them for prayer and continued preaching.

So the question is: is it Biblical to preach outside and out loud, or is it unloving? The answer is not in how we feel about it, since our finite thinking is not wise, but to see what God tells us in His infinite wisdom. The world “preach” in the Greek is kērussō and it means: To herald (as a public crier), especially divine truth (the gospel): to proclaim, to preach, to publish.

Now this is wonderful news as an evangelist, because this is what God has called me to do. It literally means to proclaim praise or announce a message loudly or in a public way, to be a public crier! So God’s command here is to publicly and loudly proclaim the gospel to every creature. God’s word confirms this through the prophets of old who would elevate themselves and proclaim God’s word to the people. Scripture also commands us to proclaim from the rooftops what was told you in secret (Matthew 10:27). Even on the day of Pentecost, Peter preached an open air sermon that lead 3,000 to Christ! Lord let it be!

So, my friends, if you have been called to this blessed task, let none discourage you, but press on! Your feet are beautiful to God and one day you will see the fruit of your labor. The gospel you bear is the most precious message of all eternity! And, brother or sister, if your calling is in another area of ministry, please support your fellow soldiers, for they are doing God’s will. Pray for them and do not reject, for they, like you, are obeying the command of the Master.

With Love in Jesus Christ, Jonathan Ball