God's Word

by -

Here is some informative information for this Easter Day.

―Buddhism was originated by Sidhartha Gautama. He died in 483 B.C.
―Mormonism was started by a man named Joseph Smith. He died in 1844.
―Jehovah’s Witness was begun by a man named Charles Taze Russell. He died in 1916.
―Christian Scientology was established by Mary Baker Eddy. She died in 1910.
―Islam was initiated by a man named Muhammad. He died in 632 A.D.
―Taoism was originated by Lao-Tze. He died sometime between 500 and 400 B.C.
―Bahai Faith’s founder was a man named Mirza Hoseyn ‘Ali. He died in 1892.
―Confucianism was initiated by a man named Kong-Zi. He died in 479 B.C.
―Shintoism is based on myth, that is, legendary stories and widely held, but false beliefs and ideas.
―Hinduism was established by a guy named Manu and is also 100% based on myth.

Now get this:

The Almighty and Creator God desired from before the Beginning to dwell with man, so much so that His Word became flesh and began His dwelling among men sometime between 4 B.C. and 1 B.C. Jesus, the Christ, lived for thirty years and taught for three and a half years until He died on a cross. He was buried just like all the ones listed above who established world religions. The DIFFERENCE is that HE AROSE three days later; His risen body was seen by numerous witnesses; after forty days of showing Himself ALIVE, He went outside the city of Jerusalem, stood on top of a mountain called Olivet and told His followers to go everywhere and preach the gospel. Then He said, “Listen, I am with you always, even until the end of the world.”  . . . and He ascended up into the sky right in front of all them. They saw it! They were forlorn, and an empty space filled their hearts and minds . . . they realized He was gone.

Then surprise of all surprises, two angels appeared in front of all those people gathered on that mountain and said, “Hey, guys, why are you all standing here gazing up into the sky? This same Jesus, who is taken up from you into the sky will absolutely come back in the same way you have seen Him go up into the sky.”

So, all these witnesses didn’t waste any time. They went back to Jerusalem and waited ten days like Jesus had told them to do in order to receive the POWER of the HOLY GHOST. They needed that POWER in order to go and tell others about the heart of God wanting to DWELL with them, LIVE with them in a daily relationship. Well, the day came ― the Christian Church was born on the Day of Pentecost, and ever since people have been sharing the love of God with nations of people around the globe. All this happened sometime between the years of 30 A.D. and 33 A.D.

The founder of Christianity was born and, yes, died. BUT, BUT, BUT, BUT, BUT rose from the dead, is alive today and will return one day to this earth. None, absolutely none, of the people whose names are listed as founders of world religions above has ever risen from the dead. In fact, they are still in their graves! But Jesus lives in the hearts of those who believe in Him. He sits on His throne in Heaven and will return here to this earth one day soon.

Let’s be absolutely sure we are ready!

 

by -

The Good Book says  . . . “For we have found this man a pestilent fellow, and a mover of sedition among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes.” (Acts 24:5)

pestilent — Modification of Middle French “empesterer,” to hobble, embarrass; from (assumed) Vulgar Latin “impastoriare,” from Latin “in-+(assumed) Vulgar Latin pastoria,” hobble, from Latin “pastor,” herdsman —more at PASTOR. Meaning is to harass with petty irritations, annoy.

I sure hope I don’t fall in to this category!

Now you can understand why some cranky people say, “Quit pestering me!” Church leaders are just trying to do what God has called them to be: a guide, a shepherd, a protector. The five-fold ministry (of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers) that God has given the church is perhaps the best “pesticide” this side of Heaven against “all the wiles of the devil.”

Eeeek! R A I D!

by -
Alive in The Dead of Winter “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live . . . “ —John 11:25

Mid-January is perhaps the coldest time of the year. Short days of light, long nights of darkness that in some areas of the world seem to never end, bone-biting cold, sniffles, shivers, lonely, windy — all chilling factors of the dead of winter. Economically, socially, and even religiously it seems like our world is in “the dead of winter.” This three-in-one winter is not just restricted to one area of the world like northern and southern hemisphere, but world-wide.

Be encouraged! There is LIFE beneath it all. The guarantee of resurrection and a new season is under it all. This dandelion shows that even in the midst of it all, one can still be alive in the dead of winter. Year after year since the beginning of time spring has sprung to show us all that Life can never die. Life’s name is the Lord Jesus. He’s there beneath all the wintry conditions of our world. All we have to do is call on Him. Call on Him and He’ll be there, because He is alive in the dead of our winter.

Say “Yay” to
The Great Creator!
The Great I AM!
Yes, “Yay” to
The Resurrection and
The Life.
Yes, say “Yay God!” (with a capital G).

by -

The word enthusiasm comes from the prefix, “en” meaning “in” and the Greek root, “theos” meaning “God.” In other words, enthusiasm of the highest and the most lasting value is that which has its roots en-theos, that is, ‘in God.’ It has been said that love makes the world go round, but it really is love with enthusiasm that does this — and love with enthusiasm achieves the noblest things in life for the benefit of mankind.

Webster’s defines enthusiasm as 1. (orig.) supernatural inspiration or possession; inspired prophetic or poetic ecstasy. 2. intense or eager interest; zeal; fervor. 3. something arousing such interest or zeal. 4. [Archaic] religious fanaticism. Syn. see PASSION.

熱狂(ねっきょう)

means dirt, clay. Gen. 2:7 says, “God formed man of the dust of the ground.”

means the lower half of one’s body, or legs.

mentioned a second time indicating that the man is standing on the ground.

shows a bending man standing up from a lying down position.

”” is a cursive or running style of writing the character 火— fire. Adam was clothed with the “glory, fire, light” of God when he stood up after having the breath of God (in-spir-a-tion) breathed into his nostrils. When Adam sinned, this fire, light, glory disappeared from him. Cf. Romans 3:23, “”For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” 

The meaning of what looks like a curved F in the second half of the character is an animal, described in the Japanese dictionary as either a dog, or some other like-looking animal. Could this have been a lamb or sheep?

王 

The original way of writing this character for “king” was a straight line above and below the character for “big, large” — . It was expressive of a man standing on the ground with his hands spread out wide. It was a picture of a great man (king) standing between heaven and earth.

In my opinion, in combining all these defined radicals, the meaning of the Chinese character for ‘enthusiasm,’ or ‘nekkyou’ would mean a “man who is created out of dirt (by God) standing up from a laying down position, being clothed with the presence of God and having dominion over all that the Almighty created.” Adam was “in God” (en-theos), but when he sinned God “drove out the man” from His presence in the Garden of Eden. BUT, when we look down the road that led to the death, burial, resurrection and manifestation of Jesus Christ, we see something awesome that happened:

“Therefore if any man be in Christ (en-theos), he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17

“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” Colossians 3:16

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

“ . . . for the joy of the LORD is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10

“This I say then, Walk in the Spirit (en-theos), and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. If we live in the Spirit (en-theos), let us also walk in the Spirit.” Galatians 5:16, 25

Jesus speaking to his disciples the night before the cross said, “Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but you see me: because I live, you shall live also. At that day you shall know that I am in the Father (en-theos), and you in me (en-theos), and I in you.” John 14:19-20

The expression ‘little while’ was indicative of the next day when Jesus would die. The world lost sight of Jesus, but the disciples saw Him in His resurrected body. Jesus then goes on to tell them that He was in His Father (en-theos), the disciples are in Him (en-theos), and that He is in us! This is expressive of the intimacy God desires with us in the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. When one is filled to overflowing with the Holy Ghost, the “en-thu-si-asm,” the “in-God” fervor, zeal, intense interest, eagerness, ecstasy and passion begins happening. It’s only the beginning! It is just like the little old English sister Nancy Baldwin used to say when I first got saved, “Brother, it gets better farther on.”

enthuse2Are you enthused yet? Man, what do you think He would have in store for us if we just stopped right now and shouted at the top of our lungs, “Hallelujah, Jesus!”? I imagine it would be like a kind of rush from somewhere deep within. Our heart would leap up into our throats, our faces would get all red, our breathing would become ecstatic. We’d probably calm down only to say, “Whew . . . that was fun!”

Nobody can be too enthusiastic!

by -

I was driving to the next island north of us one day on my way to do a wedding. It’s a perfect time to pray, or in another words “to have a chat with God.” The most exciting thing is when we stop and listen, He shares His heart. You know, praying should never be just one-sided, but so many times that’s the way we do it. Let me share an experience to suggest trying something different.

I remember one day several years ago I climbed Munakata’s Mt. Jou (see above photo of 城山) to pray. In my prayers I looked toward the Shinto shrine that has culturally dominated this city for centuries with the worship of nature’s rocks, trees, seas, and even mountains. I knew the names of the evil spirits that are devoutly worshipped there by the people. I directed my commands to the demons swirling around in the air above me and told them to take this message to the three evil spirits that are worshipped in the shrine . . .  “Let the people go . . . so that they might rightfully worship their Creator, the LORD God.” I yelled at them, commanded them and let ’em know to tell those three evil spirits where to go, and that this land is God Almighty’s, not theirs . . . and that He was the One who had called us to this city to establish Munakata’s Bethel Christian Center.

Afterward, I turned toward the Lord and said, “Okay, God. I’m done. Now I’m going to close my mouth and listen to whatever YOU want to say.” I shut my mouth and listened. What a surprise to almost immediately hear His answer in my thoughts: “They (the demons swirling above) have taken your message.” That was all He said, but it set me to doing a jig and dancing a patch all over the top of that mountain. Yes, those three evil spirits know we are here in the city!

Anyway, while I was driving to the next island that day praying on my way to do the wedding, the Holy Spirit spoke to me some pretty wonderful thoughts. Those thoughts are the crux of this little article.

— Jesus was tempted in every way we are. There is not one temptation, hurt, abuse, sin, or experience of the sin nature of man that He has not already experienced.

— He knows your heart . . .

— He knows the deepest part of you . . .

— He knows everything . . .

— He understands and wants to heal, restore, rebuild, and re-establish YOU!

“For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21

Let’s put it another way.

Almighty God,                                                                                                                                                       the One who created you in your mother’s womb,                                                                                               the One who created heaven and earth and all that is in them (the fish, birds, insects, animals, plants, rocks, electricity, the whole gamut)                                                                                                                               made His Son, Jesus (whose birth we celebrate at Christmas),                                                                       who knew no temptation, hurt, abuse, sin, or experience of the sin nature of man                                             to take our place on the cross, die, and descend into the realm of darkness (hell as it were)                               so that because of Jesus death, burial and resurrection our relationship with God might re-established. 

Man, why not think deeply about that . . . and, if you haven’t made a decision to REALLY become friends with God, talk to Him about it. By all means when you’re done talking, close your mouth and LISTEN. He just might surprise you real good!