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Archive for the ‘thoughts’ Category

The Word as an Onion

Posted by truthoughts on November 19, 2013



Too many merely accept the Word on the surface.  They pick and choose this verse or that and build their doctrine out of it.  One instance for example is that in regard to adultery.  God’s Word says that you should not commit adultery; wherefore, those who have not slept with someone outside of their marriage stand prideful in their security of purity.  This, however, is not the end of the story.  Jesus clarifies years later that the action of adultery is only part of committing this sin, as merely looking on another with lust is another part.  This obviously changes the picture and condemns those who once prideful stood in confidence as they realize that they too have committed adultery in God’s eyes.  Well, the rest of the Word is no different. 


You might consider these to be loop holes, caveats, requirements or restrictions to the rules, but I will call them layers of understanding in creating the whole picture rather than a surface image.  We are warned in the Word that though we might begin with milk, basic foundational concepts, we must graduate to meet, dig into the layers that change us into the full image of Christ… not just a watermark. 


Let’s take a look at another example, one more involved.  Let’s look at salvation in its self.


In Romans 10:13 we read that whosoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved, and this is where most leave it… on the surface of the issue.  Without the complete picture, however, many might be dangerously deceived in the end.  Now, before you puff up your prideful feathers as those who were certain they never committed adultery… take a deep breath and consider what I am about to share.  Let’s begin by taking a look at Matthew 7:21 and 12:50, “Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.  For whosoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sister, and mother.”.  Ok, so now we can see that it is not merely about calling on the name of the Lord, but about doing the will of God.  Now the question comes up of what is the will of God because many can be deceived in this as we can see in continuing on in Matthew 7:


“Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name? and in Thy name have cast out devils? and in Thy name done many wonderful works?  And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that work iniquity. (Matthew 7:22-23, KJV).  Wow, so if all these powerful displays of faith and works are not doing His will… what is?  For this we will look at Matthew 25, focusing on the last half of the chapter after the list of works done or not done by the many.  You can read in Matthew 12:40,45 the Lord’s new layer on this onion for those who do His will verses those who do not, “And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.  Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me” (KJV).  This is merely a clarification of what He said another time in Galatians 5:14, “For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (KJV).  This is where the heart of the onion is.  Many stop at the surface layer, calling upon the name of the Lord, but never peel back to be conformed to His Word and His image by walking in His love, which is to sacrifice yourself for another (clarified in John 15:13), so many on their day of judgment, believing themselves to be saved, will find out differently, making their race run in vain (Galatians 2:2, Philippians 2:16). 


You might ask why the Lord’s Word is like this, to which I would refer you to Proverbs 25:2, “It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter” as well as, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15, KJV).  So, when someone thinks the Word is contradictory, it is just that they have not peeled away the extra layers to get to the complete picture, as each layer sheds a deeper light upon the previous layers of understanding.  As you peel away the layers, as with an onion, you may shed some tears, but keep peeling because the heart of the matter is where the meet is…and your reward.   



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40 Days of Challenge – Day 6 Positive Practices and the Danger Zone

Posted by truthoughts on September 29, 2013

40 Days of Challenge

Day 6

Positive Practices and the Danger Zone






Positive Practices


Philippians 2:14 (KJV) “Do all things without murmurings (grumbling) and disputings”


Have you ever found yourself making an effort to go out of your way for someone only to find that they respond without the spirit of gratitude?  How did this make you feel?  Did you feel put out or resentful? 


When we come across this type of scenario, and find that it makes us feel upset because of the response or lack thereof, it is time to question our motives.  Are you serving others to be noticed or feel appreciated… or are you serving them as a result of serving Christ? 


If you are serving them as a result of serving Christ, then their reaction to your efforts will not so easily affect your perspective or mood.  If you are in fact serving others to receive something yourself, it may be time to check your love in action meter. 


When we truly submerge ourselves in Christ and the things of Christ, we become filled and do not experience the type of lack that the world does.  This changes our motivations, as we no longer need to do things to get things, because Christ becomes our everything.  We begin to give from the overflow, rather than as a desperate attempt to fill needs not met.  For more on this, please read the challenge from day 4 “Self Control andThoughtfulness“. 


If our expectations are self focused, we more than likely will become disappointed, which in turn discourages us from continuing the positive practices we have committed to through this process.  We must keep in the forefront of our minds, the sacrificial love that Christ Jesus gave to us, and follow His example through the love that He empowers us with by His Spirit.  We cannot accomplish this through our will power and human effort, as He reminds us when He states in Zechariah 4:6 that it is not by might, nor power, but by His Spirit.  These selfless, sacrificial acts of love is how the Lord impacted the world during His time here, and as our example, we must follow His lead. 


There is a saying that “practice makes perfect”, yet this is not the case.  Practice does not make perfect, it just makes permanent.  Only perfect practice, makes permanent perfection.  If we want to live as Christ, as we are called to do, we must make a practice of His works, because only His works are perfect. We are told many times through His Word that He requires good fruit (works) from those who follow Him.  The Lord also shares throughout His Word that His works are what He saw the Father do, and He repeated in the world.  The same example is for us, we do what we saw Him do, through His Word. 


Again, this must come from the overflow of Him in us, His love, His Word, His work.  The Lord made it very clear that our attitude and motivation is very important. He speaks often of the hypocrisy of the Pharisees, who focused on being recognized rather than serving in love for the purpose of serving.  The Lord makes it quite clear that they have their reward, acknowledgment of the people. However, for those who serve without seeking recognition, it is those whom He will recognize in the end.  Their reward will be great and eternal, given by Him and of Him.  This far outweighs public pronouncements and accolades.  So, when you go forth to serve in love, remember who it is your are actually serving, “as ye did unto the least of these My brethren, ye did unto Me”, and keep a positive attitude with gratitude for all He has done for you (Matthew 25:40). 


One challenge for today is to seek out whom you may serve, without expectations or acknowledgements, merely being satisfied by serving Him through serving them. 


Pray that the Lord will help you to have His servant heart, able to bear witness to those around you through your overflowing acts of love from His blessings.  Pray that these positive practices will both deepen your relationship with Him through understanding and discernment of His Spirit, as well as open doors to share His Word with those you serve.  Pray that He will fill your every need so you can freely give without needing in return, all for His glory and the good of those being served. 


Danger Zone


Proverbs 16:32 (KJV) “He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.” 


This life can be difficult and tends to build resentment that overflows to those around us at any given opportunity.  Have you ever noticed someone who is faced with a situation that seems small, yet they blow their cool as though someone had threatened their life?  Their rage meter seems to be jammed on the danger zone, and at times these end up on the evening news for going one or more steps too far, according to the rules of society.  This is something we can expect from those in the world, without the hope of Christ, yet what happens when those who claim Him are in this Danger Zone? 


We are told in Scripture that this life is a race, and we are to run it in order to obtain a crown. We are also told that we are surrounded by witnesses, which mean those around us who are paying very close attention to us and our actions, being we claim the name of Chirst.  What witness are you bearing?



1 Corinthians 9:24-25 (KJV) “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize?  So run, that ye may obtain.  And every man that striveth (competes) for the mastery (prize) is temperate in all things (has self control).  Now they do it to obtain a corruptible (perishable) crown; but we an incorruptible (imperishable).” 


Hebrews 12:1-2 (KJV) “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance) the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” 


With this in mind, changing our focus from that of the world who says “Live it up now because tomorrow we may die”, to that of the Scriptures which reveals that we are living for eternity and we must be conscious today for tomorrow is our reward.  This mind-shift changes our race from a sprint to a marathon, and we must adjust accordingly, while remaining conscious of the witness we bear to those watching. 


The way we begin this adjustment is by slowing things down a bit and redirecting our focus to the more important and long lasting aspects of life.  Instead of pushing ourselves to gain finances, obtain earthly rewards and acknowledgements from accomplishments valued by those around us, we take time to equip ourselves with the tools that will gain us endurance for the task ahead. We enhance our discernment by filling our arsenal with the Words of God, as they are like a double-edged sword in the spiritual battles we face.  We begin to run with the purpose of carrying those around us when necessary, instead of just leaving those around us behind in our dust.  We do not focus our time and efforts on climbing a corporate ladder, but rather focus on the ladder that Jacob saw that reached to the heavenly realm. 


Our battle is not with those around us, as they step on many around them to gain momentary monopolies, but rather on the spiritual realm that influences them in their destruction.  With this understanding, we do not react to circumstances, but take the initiative to control the spiritual atmosphere that reflects in the physical.  This mindset allows us to remain in control, minding what matters most, and being effectual in the influences of the witnesses around us to His glory.  Through Christ and His Word, we escape the danger zone which captures so many in the world through its false expectations of success. 


Through the positive practices of our growth in the Scriptures, we gain permanent, positive results that are eternal. 


Your second challenge for today is to take some time and examine your motivations and focus.  Are you living your life for a sprint or a marathon?  Are you concerned with carrying those around you or leaving them in the dust to gain what your heart of flesh desires?  What changes can you make to run in the eternal race effectually and obtain the incorruptible crown of righteousness? 


Also, take the list of questions that you answered in day 3’s challenge, and create a positive practice mission statement. Claim who you are in Christ, using present tense words such as “Iam” rather than “I want to be” or “I will be”.  Place this mission statement where you can read it daily and ponder it throughout the day. 


Acts 24:16 (KJV) “And herein do I exercise myself (this being so I myself strive), to have always a conscience void of (without) offense toward God, and toward men.”








*Day 5: Dare to be Different*


*Day 7: Coming Soon*


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40 Days of Challenge – Day 5 Dare to be Different

Posted by truthoughts on September 28, 2013

40 Days of Challenge

Day 5

Dare to be Different


The Post-It Challenge

Jeremiah 29:11 (KJV) “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end (a future and a hope).”

Isaiah 55:11-12 (KJV) “So shall My Word be that goeth forth out of My mouth: it shall not return unto Me void (empty, without fruit), but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.  For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.”

Psalm 139:15-17 (KJV) “My substance (frame, bones) was not hid from Thee when I was made in secret, and curiously (skillfully) wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.  Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect (unformed); and in Thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned (the days fashioned for me), when as yet there was none of them.”

The Word of the Lord is where His will is found. His entire plan is contained within the pages of His book, the Bible.  Though He directs our individual steps in various ways, they all come together for the purpose of fulfilling His ultimate plan.  Therefore, the only way to faithfully walk in His plan, is to know His plan, and the only way to know His plan, is to know His Word.  In the same concept, the only way to know Him (Jesus), is to know His Word, because we are told in John 1:14, that Jesus is the Word in the flesh.  This being the case, if we do not know His Word, how can we know Him?

In the following, I will describe the steps that I took many years ago, when I first began my conscious walk with the Lord.  I say conscious because I always believed who He was, but never made the committed action of seeking Him for the purpose of knowing Him and being pleasing to Him.  Just as with a new romantic relationship, we are drawn to our partner with an intense desire to fully and completely KNOW them.  We seek to find ways to be pleasing to them, and not to offend them in any way.  Well, our relationship with the Lord should be no different.

When I was 18 years old, I made the commitment to search God’s Word in order to find out who He is and how to please Him.  I decided to read His Word from beginning to end, all the way through.  No matter how long it would take, I was committed to this task.  I began with a prayer every day before ever opening His Word. I would ask for Him to reveal Himself to me through His Word and help me to understand His Word and His Will.  I asked Him to show me what was pleasing to Him and also to reveal to me what displeased Him, and to help me become pleasing to Him.  This was my daily prayer.

As I began to read through His Word, I would come across promises He gave to those who were His.  I made a choice to write these promises on post-it notes and placed them on my wall in my bedroom.  Each day, in the morning and again at night, I would pray these very words of His promises. Soon I began to realize that each of these promises included requirements and / or restrictions (loop holes).  For example, we discussed in an earlier challenge that though Scripture says that we can have whatever we ask for in His name, if we do not receive what we ask, it is because we have asked according to our lusts and not according to His Will.  This is the requirement for the blessing /promise.  In most churches, you will merely hear about the promises, as with most books, and never hear about the required steps to obtain these promises.

With this in mind, I began to add the requirement, coupled with the promise, into a notebook.  I would read these daily, and daily add to them.  Over time I began to remember His Words and could pray accordingly.  I knew that regardless of my past, who I was, etc… He could not deny Himself (His Word), and that He accomplishes His Word – even if just for His name’s sake.

Psalm 79:9 (KJV) “Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of Thy name: and deliver us, and purge away our sins, for Thy name’s sake.”

Isaiah 48:11 (KJV) “For Mine own sake, even for Mine own sake, will I do it: for how should My name be polluted? and I will not give My glory unto another.”

Daniel 9:19 (KJV) “O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, hearken and do; defer not, for Thine own sake, O my God: for Thy city and Thy people are called by Thy name.”

Your challenge for this day is to begin seeking the Lord, and learning how to be pleasing to Him.  Commit to reading through His Word from beginning to end, one day at a time.  Do not set a time limit upon this task because it will hinder your purpose.  Read with the purpose of knowing Him.  Some days you may read more than others, some days less… Let Him guide you through this process.  Remain open to His Word and His Spirit.  Be willing to let go of all preconceived notions of who you were taught that He is, and just get to know who He is, as revealed in His Word. Be sure to read at least some, every day.

In addition to reading His Word, and praying, choose to write His promises down in either a journal or something similar to the post-its that I once did.  Read over these at least once a day and commit them to prayer.  This is a powerful tool against all attacks from the enemy, including your own doubts and insecurities.  No matter what you face, keep on – faithfully, and you will grow in Him far more than you can currently imagine.

Allow His Word to conform you, mold you, teach you, correct you, and guide you – in every step.  Remind yourself of what you have read, throughout the day, as you are faced with life.  Remember that true love, as with His Word, lifts you to a higher standard, and is willing to achieve the utmost – beyond any obstacles.  True achievement and growth only comes when you dare to be different.

Psalm 4:3 (KJV) “But know that the LORD hath set apart him that is godly for Himself: the LORD will hear when I call unto Him.”





**Day 4: Self Control and Thoughtfulness**

** Day 6: Positive Practices and the Danger Zone**

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40 Days of Challenge – Day 4 Self Control and Thoughtfulness

Posted by truthoughts on September 25, 2013

40 Days of Challenge

Day 4

Self Control and Thoughtfulness


Self Control

James 1:19-20 (KJV)  “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not (does not produce) the righteousness of God.”

Many times in our human relationships, we find it difficult to hold our tongue from interjecting so others can “see what we see” and avoid unnecessary pit falls and disasters.  When someone does this repeatedly, often we consider this nagging.  Women are dominantly categorized with this negative characteristic.  However, it is not the motive that is bad, but rather the implementation which is rejected.

In addition to this “jumping the gun”, we find it difficult to hold back the “I told you so”, when the “inevitable” occurs.

Proverbs 18:19,21 (KJV)  “A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle. Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.”

James 3:8-10 (KJV) “But the tongue can not man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.  Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude (likeness) of God.  Out of the same mouth proceeded blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be.”

You may now be asking yourself, how are you suppose to tame your tongue when Scripture just said, “But the tongue can no man tame”.

2 Timothy 1:7 (KJV) “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind (self control).”

Galatians 5:22-23 (KJV) “But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance (self control): against such there is no law.”

The answer is that through the patience and self control empowered to you through the Holy Spirit of God, as His gift to you, that you can accomplish this.  It can never be accomplished through mere strength of your own will.  Like an overflowing fountain, whatever is in you (your spirit), good – bad – beautiful – ugly, is going to come out of your mouth eventually.

Those who attempt to use human will power to suppress what is inside are merely creating a pressure cooker that will one day explode.  This is how terms of reference, such as “going postal” came to be part of our generation’s understanding of an emotional blow up in a physical manifestation.

As we have now touched on this subject from the lighter aspect of nagging and bragging, to the extreme of “going postal”, lets examine one step that can be done to change this direction in a positive and Biblical path.  Using an example of someone I know, who’s action in this regard has greatly impacted me in this area.  My husband, Bradley, and I assisted Roger Oakland in his Understand The Times ministry in the early 2000’s.  If you have ever listened to one of his radio broadcasts or read one of his books, you may have noticed what I am about to share with you.

Roger’s initial approach when addressing a controversial topic is just to ask a logical, thought provoking question.  In addition to this, after he lays some foundational groundwork on the topic, he ends in reiteration of the initial question. This concept can be applied in every area of controversy.

Taking a step back to our original focus of nagging and bragging, how do you see ways that Roger’s concept can apply?  Here is an example :

A husband desires to take a life changing direction by accepting a job he was offered, across the country.   This job opportunity would pay more money and allow him a change in focus to a new field, not previously explored; however the husband focuses on the more money and change opportunity rather than concerns regarding his lack of experience, a lack of a support system (family, friends) in the area, and the intense requirements to maintain his new position (longer hours, travel, pressured deadlines, etc).

The wife, deciding she needs to approach this delicately, as to not hinder his ego or dreams, yet desiring him to view this in a more grounded perspective, asks a nonthreatening question.  “Honey, how do you see this playing out?”, she asks.

Her husband responds with all of his excited hopes of what can be done with the extra money, as well as being able to learn something new.  So, she asks him how they will coordinate their time together with his new schedule? This stumps him a bit at first, but he quickly responds with, “We’ll figure it out”.  She then asks about who they will have watch the kids, as their parents took turns babysitting.  His initial though is that they will find someone.   The wife decides to leave it at this for now and pray about it.

A few days go by, and these questions continue to come up in the husband’s mind.  He becomes bothered by not having a plan, which then causes him to ponder other aspects he had not looked at.  With this, he begins to see the positives in their current situation.  He took his concerns to the Lord, and only felt peace in remaining where he was, understanding that the Lord would provide for their needs. He then made the decision that was best for his family, rather than what appeared attractive to him on the surface.

The enemy knows that our flesh likes shiny, pretty things, and he appeals to this weakness when tempting us to ultimate destruction.

I once heard a reference that as the man is the head of the house, the woman is like the neck, with the ability to sway the head in a certain direction.  This is why Satan approached Eve in the garden, because he knew she could sway Adam’s direction.  A wife has a great role in her marriage, and because of this, the husband has a great responsibility to cover her spiritually.  If the husband chooses not to cover and lead his wife and family, he only sets himself on a path toward destruction.  (In regard to how to lead by serving, please read the previous challenges)

As with the analogy above, children can be seen as legs and feet, or arms and hands, to which they become extensions in action of how they are led – in the Lord or in the world.

One challenge for today is to approach any conflicts through thought provoking questions, rather than nagging and bragging.

Pray that the Lord will give you peace and clarity of thought, as well as inspiring you with the best wording for your questions. Pray that He reveal to you the complete truth of the matter, and guide you in His desired direction. *Be willing to be led, as it may be you the Lord desires to change*


Psalm 139:17-18 (KJV) “How precious also are Thy thoughts unto me, O God!  how great is the sum of them!  If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake; I am still with Thee.”

Genesis 4:9 (KJV) “And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?”

In the self centered world today, the common thought is that you are not responsible for anyone but yourself.  When one might be accountable for another, we may ask as did Cain, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”

In John 21:15-17, we see the Lord’s command to Peter, first to feed (instruct, lead) His lambs, and twice to feed His sheep.

It is the self centered who refuse accountability. Once we commit to following Christ, we commit to conforming (growing) into His image (ways), and to leading others in that same path.

Too many neglect to weigh the cost (requirements) of salvation.  Many pastors have resorted to paving a wide and easy path for the self centered to make it through to Heaven, yet we are told that the only way is through Jesus as the door, and the path is narrow where only a few make it; even the disciples were concerned that anyone could make it through (Matthew 19:25).  We are warned that we must walk through fires of purification to weigh our works, at times suffering loss, which is painful. We are told that only those who overcome and remain faithful in their continued walk will make it.

Are we our brother’s keeper? Yes. (I encourage you to read 1 Corinthians 8 forcontextual clarification and understanding)

Matthew 18:5-7 (KJV) “And whoso shall receive one such little child in My name receiveth Me.  But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in Me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.  Woe unto the world because of offenses!  for it must needs be that offenses come; but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh!”

In regard to these last days, we are told:

Matthew 24:10 (KJV) “And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.”

To many the Lord will respond with:

Matthew 20:40,45 (KJV) “And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these My brethren, ye have done it unto Me… Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to Me.”

Today’s second challenge is to be conscious of how you impart through words, thoughts, and actions to those around you…especially those of your household.

Pray that the Lord will open the eyes of your understanding and quicken your discernment in the midst of circumstances. Pray for guidance and His love and patience to walk faithfully in the path He has chosen for you – to make a good witness of your profession of faith.  Also that those within your influence will be inspired by you to faithfully follow, in Truth, the Lord Jesus.

Isaiah 55:7 (KJV) “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”






*Day 3: Introspection and Unselfish Love*

*Day 5: Dare to be Different*

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40 Days of Challenge – Day 3 Introspection and Unselfish Love

Posted by truthoughts on September 24, 2013

40 Day Challenge

Day 3

Introspection and Unselfish Love



Biblical Wife

Jeremiah 17:10 (KJV) “I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.”

Though this first section is specifically subtitled “Biblical Wife”, we all who follow the Lord Jesus, are called the Bride of Christ.  So, if you are a woman, see this as an aspect of your physical position in this life and as part of the Church.  If you are a man, see how you may fit into this subsection in regard to being a part of the Bride in your relationship to the Lord and as a witness to those around you. 

This subsection of today’s challenge will begin with a myriad of questions to promote some self introspection and clarity of your personal perspective along these lines. We will then explore the aspects of unselfish love. 

(1)  Are you frequent and consistent in your prayer time and Bible readings?

(2)  Are your daily decisions guided by what God’s will is in regard to His Word?

(3)  Do you maintain a heart of gratitude for God and what He has done for you?

(4)  Is your priority to please God or to please people?

(5)  Is your priority to be holy or happy in life?   

The questions above are focused on your preparatory foundation for discipleship and maturity in both your human and faith-based relationships.  If you find that you are not able to honestly answer positively to these questions, what is there you feel you could do to grow in these areas? Create a plan of action and step up to follow through with that plan. 

The following questions are geared more toward your home life, but can also be seen as examples of your person-hood / temple of the Holy Spirit and your life in general. 

(1)  Is your home under control, or chaotic? (housework, environment feel, disciplined -obedient children, etc.)

(2)  Are you able and comfortable at a moment’s notice, to entertain company, without feeling embarrassed by the appearance or the behavior of your family members? 

(3)  How do you manage your time throughout the day? Are you able to accomplish all you have set before you to do, or do you struggle regularly with everyday tasks? 

Just as with the first set of questions, if you are unable to respond in a positive way to the above, create a plan of action to tackle these areas and strengthen the pillars of your surroundings.  This will help you to be more effective in every area of your life, which is exactly where God wants you to be.  You will be of much more use to Him if you can manage your home and person-hood. 

1 Timothy 3:5 (KJV) “For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?”

In the next set of questions, you will evaluate your strengths and weaknesses in regard to how you relate with others. This is very important in every relationship and gives necessary strength to every witness. 

(1)  Do you communicate with others in a concise way, or are you typically a rambler, easily distracted and going off on tangents? 

(2)  Are you a good listener?  Do you really hear what is being said to you and ponder it before speaking, or do you hear bits and pieces, being more concerned about what you may say next?

(3)  When you speak to others, especially your spouse and the Lord, do you speak in a respectful manner, or are you critical, sarcastic, and rude in your tone?

(4)  Are you able to express yourself to get your point across without others feeling that you are attacking them? 

(5)  Does your spouse, or others, able to freely share their thoughts and feelings with you – in confidence and fearless trust?  This will reveal if even the Lord can trust you with deeper insights. 

(6)  Do you publicly recognize when others do well, or do you speak judgmentally or critically to and over them? 

(7)  Is the perception you give to others one of being positive or negative? 

The above questions you just answered reveal a great deal about your strengths and weaknesses.  Many of these are critical to a healthy relationship, especially in marriage.  They also allow you to see if or why you may or may not be used more by the Lord. 

Luke16:10-11 (KJV) “He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.  If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches?”

These following questions will reveal your character.   Be honest, because the first step in making changes in the right direction, is acknowledging the truth, then seeing steps to strengthen those areas of weakness. The entire purpose of our lives on this earth is to grow into the image of Christ, and to be used by Him to the fullest extent, for His glory and your good.  This means that there must always be growth, every day that He grants you. 

(1)  Do others consider you to be confident, arrogant, or aggressive?  If so, why?

(2)  Do you usually express the Spirit of power, love, and self control (discipline), or one of fear and timidity? 

(3)  If the Lord asks you to do something, do you boldly obey, or hesitate from fear or doubt?

(4)  Do you believe that you must understand God’s purpose for your life before moving forward, or do you move forward, trusting He will direct your steps in the way of His will? 

(5)  Are you comfortable and confident to initiate intimacy in your relationship with your spouse, as well as with the Lord (by revealing the real you)?

(6)  How do you handle stress in life?  Are you positive and graceful about it, or do you react according to the degree of stress you are facing with tension?

After answering the above questions, how did this exercise make you feel?  Why do you believe that you felt the way that you did while responding?  Do you feel you can trust those feelings?  Why or why not?  What are the two points above (out of all of the questions) are you the most drawn to with a desire to improve in?  Why did you choose those two?

Do you believe that you can accomplish growth in those two aspects, or additional aspects covered above?  What would it look like to you for you to see yourself overcoming in those areas?  How do you believe these changes can affect your relationships, both human and with the Lord? Now, with all that being said, are you committed to growing toward the Lord in His image, and expressing this to those around you? 

Take a moment to pray to the Lord to help equip you for this journey.  Ask Him to reveal His Word and His Will to you in an easy and clear way.  Request His assistance through His Spirit, and to surround you with those trusted in Him to help disciple you through this changing process.  Pray that He will guard you through this and strengthen every area of weakness so that through your weakness, He is shown strong. 

Unselfish Love

Romans12:10 (KJV) “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another”

First, let’s clarify something.  As we know that the world’s various societies, especially in the west (United States), we are exposed to cultures of “self” focus. The range of self focus ranges from the typical self-centeredness (vanity), to secular self improvements using new age philosophies.  All of these go against love and the example set forth by Christ for those who follow Him. This being the case, we must focus to a certain extent upon ourselves in regard to making changes which conform to Christ according to His Word.  This is where these challenges come in. 

You may have noticed that I have included some reference links at the bottom of each of these challenge posts.  These links are to books which I am reading, that assist in the ideas from which I am sharing.  My issue with these books is that they are mostly self focused singularly, and I am trying to spread that out to show how some aspects cover our relationship with the Lord as well.  As shared in the previous two posts, all of our human relationships are examples and training grounds for our relationship with the Lord.  If we can better understand how to properly relate to each other in a Biblical way, then we can better understand how we relate to the Lord and vice verse. 

We know from the words of our Lord, that we are to deny ourselves (our desires, will,wants, dreams, etc.) for the sake of Christ and His will.  This is love, to lay your own life down for another.  Jesus said this is the greatest love, whether by death or even by living for another, for their good and not your own (john 15:13). 

When someone is in a relationship that is dominantly a self-centered relationship,as most secular relationships are, an environment of neediness, increasingly demanding,and overly sensitive which becomes an unhealthy cycle of abuse.  This abuse is that of misusing another to fulfill holes within yourself.  When we are complete in Christ, reliant upon Him alone to fill and complete us, we can then have an abundance of overflow to be as His image to those around us.  The Lord is able to fill our cups to overflowing so that those around us will be blessed by what floods beyond ourselves.  When we are lacking, we become like a sponge, leaching everything out of those around us.  In this, we are of no use to the Lord because He has to send others to help us.  Though we may find ourselves in this situation from time to time, some live in this type of circumstance.  You can tell the difference between one who finds themselves in many battles, yet still manages to continually give of themselves, and others who find themselves in constant battles, yet can only take from others and never giving anything of worth to others. 

This being the case, it is through marital relationships that these tendencies are enhanced.  There is no other relationship that better exemplifies our relationship with the Lord, than the husband and wife.  When a couple come together, begin dating, all seems great.  True, they may have issues (disagreements) from time to time, but normally nothing major (at least in the moment).  However, once this couple marries, those minor disagreements become major battle grounds, if not addressed quickly and correctly.  We are never promised to get along with everyone always, and being in the flesh, we may not always understand the reasons behind why the Lord does some of the things that He does.  This can be very frustrating.  Outwardly, we may appear graceful and content, but inwardly we may be screaming and stomping around in selfish reactions.  In a marriage, these inward reactions become outward reactions and reveal weaknesses that are in need of attention.  If we can gain control over these areas in the physical, we will be more mature in the image of Christ in our relationship of faith. 

Some masks that selfishness displays are moodiness, complaining, laziness, irresponsibility, boasting, bragging, overly talking and not listening, among many others.  Even doing what may appear as selfless, can in fact be selfish, when it is done for the sake of bragging, manipulating for control, or receiving an award for it.  This is something the Lord spoke in great deal about against the Pharisees. 

As you are reading through these points, does your mind wonder to areas you may be weak in, or your spouse’s weaknesses? This can reveal your true heart in this matter.  As Kendrick states in The Love Dare, “you either make decisions out of love for others or love for yourself” (p. 12). True love, as shared in 1 Corinthians 13:5 does not seek its own.  The true key in showing true love for others is found in humility.  Even salvation is found only once we humble ourselves, recognize we have sinned against the Lord, and repent (turn from those sins), and follow Him faithfully. 

The expression of selfless love can be seen from smaller examples of serving your spouse before yourself, or in the larger picture of jumping in front of a bullet to protect them.  Both expressions are from the same type of love.  When a couple begins to date, the female takes note in the back of her mind of the things her prospective husband does or does not do. Does he open her door?  Does he guide her into a room?  Does he give more attention and care to his vehicle than her? How much time does he spend asking her questions verses talking about himself?  These small things reveal a great deal.  As we discussed previously, those small things we see in the dating relationship are only heightened in the marriage.  These little expressions can also show a great deal of the man’s relationship with the Lord.  Many times there are some men who go to church to be near a woman.  They spend a lot of time doing what they believe she desires of them, but not truly being a converted man of God.  A true woman of God can spot this falsity quickly, even if just through their conversation and focus outside of the church.  If more would properly inspect their potential partner, as well as themselves, more marriages would last and be faithful witnesses to the unfaithful world around them. 

Regardless of how you may view yourself in this moment, ask yourself if your spouse believes that you have their best interest at heart. If you cannot honestly respond with “yes”, then ask yourself or your spouse, “What can you do to create an environment that would make them believe that you do?”.  In the same manner, can you honestly say that the Lord believes that you seek His will over your own?  If not, what can you do to make this a reality?

Philippians2:3-5 (KJV) “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not everyman on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus”

As with the example above pertaining to a man focusing on his vehicle more than his partner, and as a person may focus more on their job than their obedience to the Lord… Realize that where your time and money are, is where your heart will be. 

Matthew6:21 (KJV) “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”

For today’s challenge, spend some time and money on a special gift for your love done.  Put thought into what they would like or appreciate rather than what you would like or appreciate.  Also, spend some extra time in prayer and in reading God’s Word, as well as give something of value (energy, money, etc.) to doing something the Lord is placing upon your heart to do for Him.  Regardless of the outcome, (appreciation or lack thereof) continue on in this direction, while keeping up with the previous challenges and know that soon you will see things change for the better. 

James 3:16-18 (KJV) “For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.”





**Day 2: Introspection and Kindness**

**Day 4: Self Control and Thoughtfulness**

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40 Days of Challenge – Day 2 Introspection and Kindness

Posted by truthoughts on May 13, 2013

40 Days of Challenge

Day 2

Introspection and Kindness



Proverbs 9:10 (KJV) “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.”

Our childhood experiences, especially in the family, greatly affect how we view and respond within our adult relationships. Though the process of maturing in a healthy way, we must peer back and divide the truth from the fiction in regard to our perspective.  As we sift through events in our past, we can begin to replace the poor foundations of our relationship understandings with a more Godly perspective.

For example, when I was 14 years old, through some traumatic events in my life, I became depressed.  Feeling depressed caused me not to want to attend school. As a result, my mom, being a single mother, had a difficult time raising me.  She worked multiple jobs at the time, and when she was home and should have been resting, we were arguing or playing the silence game.  There came a time when she had had enough and decided to contact my father, so I could live with him.

During this phone conversation with my father, he gave me every excuse as to why he could not take me in.   Due to his response to me, I was left feeling rejected and unloved.  This theme of feeling rejected and unloved, repeated many times, in may scenarios through the years, as I am sure multitudes can relate.

The foundation which was built, because of events like these, was held together by all sorts of garbage.  I needed to tear up that destructive foundation, and create a clean, pure, and true foundation.  Through this process, I realized that it was not really about me, that my father did not want me to come and stay with him.  It was rooted in his own insecurities of feeling inadequate to care for me.  My father had never cared for his kids other than a few weekends or summer vacations a year. He enjoyed the “fun dad” image, but was more than ready to let someone else care for the larger issues pertaining to child rearing.  As a child, I could not understand this aspect of his perspective, but as an adult, I can.

I will not lie to you, this is a painful process. It can also be time consuming, depending upon how many and how deep the poorly structured foundations go. However, it is very worth the effort, tears, and time.  One realization which you must accept is that though you may change and grow, those around you may not.  In fact, as discussed in Day 1 “Expectations and Patience“, they will more than likely actively engage you to oppose this change.  The reason why they may react in this manner is because your change places a mirror before them.  This mirror shows them that the strongholds they have allowed to dictate their identity and direction, can be cut and changed.

By our sin nature, we are lazy.  We rely on excuses and blame to prevent us from moving forward.  It is guaranteed that those closest to you will do everything in their power to hold you back.  This is why Scripture tells us that a prophet is not accepted where he is from (Luke 4:24). Those who know you best, and the longest, know your dirt.  They have a hard time seeing a new you and will continually attempt to push you back into the mud with the rest of those wallowing in it; however, you are not a swine, but of royal standing in the Kingdom of Christ.  You do not belong in the mud.  So, before you allow anyone to return you to the mud you were delivered from, remember this:

Matthew 7:6 (KJV) “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.”

As with human relationships, when originally exposed to the Christian faith, we encounter foundations of fallacy; hence the many denominations.  If you look deeper into every denomination, you will also notice that even within themselves, they do not hold to all of the same doctrines.  With this, you can see that as human relationship foundations must be torn up and relayed, so do the flawed philosophies laid by fallible man. The way to do this is to go straight to the source, God’s Word, to see what is His true and pure foundation of the faith.

2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV) “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

You may ask, “How can I know if I have created a different god to follow, than the true Jesus?”  If you ask yourself the following questions, take note of your reaction, which will reveal the truth.

(1)  Do you desire to read God’s Word in full, rather than selected verses by others?

(2)  When someone refers to, or quotes Scripture, do you research to see if it is accurate?

(3)  If the verse is not accurate, does this upset you?

(4)  If you are shown Scripture that reveals your preconceived notion of the Lord as inaccurate, are you willing to give up your opinion and conform to His Word accordingly? Or do you feel offended, and reject it with any excuse in order to maintain your identity and lifestyle?

Luke 9:23 (KJV) “And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.”

Luke 14:26-27 (KJV) “If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.  And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.”

Colossians 2:8 (KJV) “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.”

Before we continue, I suggest praying to the Lord now to quicken you in His wisdom, knowledge, understanding, discernment, and direction.  Also that He will reveal suppressed memories and foundational errors in a way that brings you the proper perspective, while guiding you to healing, growth, and restoration in your human relationships (past and present), and most importantly, with Him.

Now, with this in mind, attempt to answer the following questions in one sentence: (Note: You may do this as many times for as many situations as you desire, it is encouraged to do so. Also, use human relationship circumstances as well as those pertaining to your relationship with the Lord.)

(1)  In regard to what has been discussed above, what incident comes to mind from your past? Who was there?  When was this incident?  Where were you?

(2)  What happened?  (Literally try to place yourself in this situation, to remember as much as possible)

(3)  What has the Lord revealed to you regarding how you behave in your current relationship(s) as a result of this event?

(4)  What possible perspectives (interpretations) exist pertaining to that event?  (For example: In my story that I shared with you regarding my father, my interpretation at the time was that I was being rejected and was unloved.)

(5)  Write a prayer of release from any unhealthy habits (negative behaviors) in thinking and actions that you have developed as a result of this event.


Ephesians 4:32 (KJV) “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”

The action of love is through kindness.  As love reacts through patience, kindness is the forerunner of love.  Kindness is the initial action, patience the reaction.

Proverbs 3:3-4 (KJV) “Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.”

If you were to narrow the aspects of kindness down to four points, they would be as follows:

(1)  Initiative: Acts of kindness are not prompted by outside sources, but rather spurred on by inward love and compassion.  Kindness takes the first step, regardless of how deserving the recipient may appear.

(2)  Gentleness: Kindness prompts gentleness and tenderness toward others.  Even when faced with difficult situations or personalities, the kindness of love guides us to go out of our way in order to treat others with compassion through gentle speech rather than harsh words and tones.

(3)  Helpfulness: Kindness is an act of being helpful through a servant heart.  Wives seek to be a helpmate to their husbands, unconcerned by their individual rights and standing.  Husbands are moved to understand the needs of their wives, and fulfill them, even if it means putting their own needs aside.

Matthew 20:27 (KJV) “And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be yourservant.”

Ephesians 5:25 (KJV) “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it”

(4)  Willingness: Submitting your willfulness for the sake of another is a very high act of kindness through love.  When you are faced with an argument, instead of causing damage through insisting you are in the right, submit yourselves one to another by taking time to first listen and understand the other person.  By being willing to give of yourself and your own desires for another, you show the greatest act of love.  This is what is meant by the Lord telling us we need to take up our cross daily and follow Him.  Our cross is our old self, desires, wills, dreams, ideas, and the like.  We are to give up ourselves in order to fully follow Him. We see above in Ephesians 5:25, that husbands are to love their wives in this manner, by giving themselves up for their wives.  Both wives and husbands are to follow the ideal of becoming a servant to each other, and by doing so, they become witnesses to each other and those around them of the greatness of God and of His love.

In most circumstances, it is kindness that brings people together for a lifelong commitment toward each other.  Over time, each may begin to take the other for granted, causing kindness to waver.  In Proverbs 31:26, we read that this blessed woman has kindness in her tongue.  When you speak to those around you, are you blessing them with kindness or cursing them?  Despite the actions and reactions of those around you, make the choice today to speak and think toward others with kindness and pure love.  Meet every harsh word with a blessing.  You may see that the blessings spoken in love to a stone heart, can melt the walls seen as solid and indestructible.

Proverbs19:22a (KJV) “The desire of a man is his kindness”

Proverbs 23:7a (KJV) “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he”

In the same manner, attempt to do at least one generous act of kindness to your spouse or loved one.  In addition to this, do something for God.  You can choose to share His Word with another, or help someone in need to show His love.

At the end of the day,  take a moment to reflect on what you have learned and done.  What did you discover?  Come up with some ideas on how to implement this in your daily life.  You may be surprised at how things begin to change around you for the better.  Even in negative situations, we are told in Scripture the following:

Romans12:20 (KJV) “Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head”



*Day 1: Expectations and Patience*

*Day 3: Introspection and Unselfish Love*

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A Quick Update

Posted by truthoughts on November 28, 2009

This is just a quick update. I have not been on my site in a while due to my computer crashing. I just got another one over the weekend, so I hope to have everything up and running again soon.

I have received a lot of comments and messages over the time that I was away and I would really like to respond to everyone though I am not sure how it will come up under my comments because I believe that they show up as they came in… this means that my responses will be all bunched up at the end and you may have to search through them for the one relating to your thoughts or questions.

Most of what I have received require some research and this will take a bit of time. I appreciate your patience.

The computer that I have now is a netbook and not a notebook. This just means that the screen is much smaller… MUCH smaller, lol. Now, because of this… what I see on the site may not line up exactly how you view it, so if things seem a miss in the alignment (mostly pertaining to pictures, etc.) I do apologize in advance.

Anyway, that is all for now. I hope everyone had a blessed Thanksgiving!

Sincerely In Christ,

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Once Saved, Always Saved?

Posted by truthoughts on January 10, 2009

I received a comment, Don’s Comment, that inspired me to write this article. In his comment, he brought up the questions of “Once Saved, Always Saved”, which is a debate that has circled the Church many times over. I am sure that you can find a plentiful range of answers on this topic depending upon whom you ask.

Don made some very good points in his comment for being once saved, always saved and I encourage you to read the short comment.

Lets begin with the scripture that he gave…

Romans 10:9-10

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

This is a great scripture to begin with. This is the sole foundation of salvation, however, there are many other verses to consider in this topic and that is what we will discuss in this article.

First, lets notice that the verse given above states that we must confess with our mouth the Lord Jesus… also, with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. Well, what happens if you first confess and then later deny? This is the situation that Peter found himself in.

In four places, Jesus told Peter that Peter would deny Him three times before the cock crowed that next morning (Matthew 26:34, Mark 14:30, Luke 22:34, John 13:38). Then it shows Peter’s reactions when it happened in three places (Matthew 26:75, Mark 14:72, Luke 22:61).

Now, if we combine the following verse with the scripture in Romans 10, we begin to get a more balanced view of obtaining salvation.

Matthew 10:33

But whosoever shall deny Me before men, him will I also deny before My Father which is in heaven.

So, this verse being the case… how did Peter get around this for his salvation? We can find that out in these next verses. Pay close attention to whom it is directing the message to… Jesus is speaking to Simon, son of Jonas, which is also Peter.

John 21:15-17

So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, [son] of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. He saith to him again the second time, Simon, [son] of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep. He saith unto him the third time, Simon, [son] of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.

Now, notice that Peter had to restate his love for Jesus three times, which was in direct opposition to his three denials and as I stated before… did you notice that Jesus referred to Peter as Simon? Lets remember back when Jesus renamed Simon to Peter:

Matthew 16:15-19

He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona [son of Jonas]: for flesh and blood hath not revealed [it] unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

Notice what gave Peter his name. It was the fact that he confessed with his mouth unto salvation and therefore became a new creation in Christ. Why did Jesus then revert back to calling Peter, Simon in the book of John? It was because he denied Jesus unto perdition.

We could stop there, but lets keep going.

Hebrews 10:39

But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.

What was that??? “Draw back unto perdition”!!! Oh my, what would make him say that? Lets see a parable that Jesus shared:

Matthew 13:3-8 And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow; And when he sowed, some [seeds] fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up: Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth: And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them: But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.

Matthew 13:18-23 Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower. When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth [it] not, then cometh the wicked [one], and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side. But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended. He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful. But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth [it]; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.

Mark 4:3-8 Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow: And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up. And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth: But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred.

Mark 4:14-22 The sower soweth the word. And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts. And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended. And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word, And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful. And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive [it], and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred. And he said unto them, Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed? and not to be set on a candlestick? For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad.

Luke 8:5-18 A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it. And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it. And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be? And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand. Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. They on the rock [are they], which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away. And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of [this] life, and bring no fruit to perfection. But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep [it], and bring forth fruit with patience. No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth [it] under a bed; but setteth [it] on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light. For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither [any thing] hid, that shall not be known and come abroad. Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have.

Within this “Once Saved, Always Saved” debate, there is the question of, if some confess to being Christians, but end up going to hell… were they ever really saved? Well, scripture implies that can be the case. Lets take a look at the topic of vessels. The Bible speaks of having vessels of honor and vessels of dishonor. Now, you may be wondering how I can imply that some in the “Church” would be considered vessels of dishonor… Well, lets look at that, shall we?

2 Peter 2:1-3 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.

2 Peter 2:12-22 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, [as] they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots [they are] and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you; Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children: Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam [the son] of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; But was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice forbad the madness of the prophet. These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. For when they speak great swelling [words] of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, [through much] wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known [it], to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog [is] turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.

Matthew 13:25-30 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

2 Timothy 2:19-21 Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, [and] prepared unto every good work.

Lets take a look at another example of enemies within the Church:

2 Timothy 4:3-4 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; And they shall turn away [their] ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

I will end on the following verses:

2 Peter 2:20-22 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known [it], to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog [is] turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.

In Revelation 3:1-6 you can see Jesus’ letter to the Church of Sardis. Notice how He tells them that their works are dead and not perfect. Notice also how He references in verse 5 that IF they overcome, He will NOT blot out their names in the book of life. This means that if they do NOT overcome and continue in their ways, He WILL blot out their names in the book of life.

Lets also take a close look at Revelation 3:14-22 where Jesus is speaking to the “Church” of the Laodiceans. Jesus gets so upset with this Church’s lukewarmness, that He says if they do not change He will spew them out of His mouth.

Honestly, there are so many scriptures to share on this topic… however, room does not permit for me to dictate the Bible in its entirety to you. I highly encourage you to search out the scriptures for yourself and pray that the Lord will open your eyes to His Word and the understanding of His Word (Proverbs 4:7).

The following video is very convicting, please watch it.

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Mark Biltz Responds To Criticism

Posted by truthoughts on May 20, 2008

With all of the controversy from the video I have posted, I would like to share an excerpt from Mark Biltz website:

For my previous posts please visit: Jewish Feasts of the Lord also Feasts of the Lord Part II and for the combined version… Jewish Feasts and Holy Days

Stipulating Eclipse Comments
By Pastor Mark Biltz

“[…] Remember when Messiah said the gates of hell will not prevail against the church! Gates
are a defensive piece of armory, not offensive! The church has been terrified of being
attacked by gates?! The truth here is that the gates are trying to keep people in captivity
and the church is supposed to storm the gates of hell and rescue the people held cap-
tive! The truth is that Satan and his minions are terrified of us! It’s time to storm them
and that’s my heart. Be Blessed!

I hope you enjoyed listening to the song above and now watch the video. May you
be inspired to join me as we Wake, Watch and go to Work! Pass this on to other
Warriors! We need to quit squabbling over the dating of the rapture and unite to the
Work! Keep this going, time is short, and the battle is near!”

There is a lot more that he said, but I would like for you to visit his site to see for yourself. The excerpt that I am sharing here is one that we should all be able to relate to in the Church. There should be no controversy with this. I found his words very insightful and inspiring and I hope that you will as well. Please do give it a read and if you have any questions about what he teaches, please ask him. Pastor Mark Biltz is the perfect source to find out what he, himself, means with what he states.

In this content that he has written, it also states his clarifications of what others may be misunderstanding about the controversial video interview he had with Prophecy In The News. For your researching desires, this is a great place to start.

This video has caused quite a stir amongst those in the church and those leering in for multiple reasons. For some, it has been an encouraging wake up call, for others, it has been an alarming siren that they just want to silence. It reminds me of the comparison of Jesus being the corner stone and a stumbling block.

If you have not seen the video, please check it out:

Part I      Part II    


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Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Religion… Yeah Right!

Posted by truthoughts on May 18, 2008

There is a lot of controversy over these topics lately and through the years. It seems to be growing at more of a rapid pace through and to the Church lately. It seems that you are fine as long as you do not promote, discuss or even alert others that you are a Christian. If you do, then you are asked to stay quiet for the greater good or to leave in silence. We are being groomed to accept the rules of the supposed majority and to resign ourselves to not questioning those with a loud voice.

[Lets define what a Christian is because it seems that many people are a little confused as to what it means. First of all, you MUST believe that the Bible is the INERRANT Word of God, without this, you cannot base a security of salvation on what the Bible says if you do not believe it is without error. Secondly, you have to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah, Savior, the Son of God (Creator of heaven and earth) and that He came here to earth, lived a sinless life to die on a cross in place of you. This created a way to be able to come before God, clean from sin, because your price has been paid and you have been cleansed. You must also believe that Jesus rose from the dead 3 days later and is now in heaven sitting at the right hand of God on His throne making intercession for you… Mary cannot do this, for there is NO other way to God but through Jesus His Son. Also, you must realize that you have sinned, done things wrong and be repentful of this (desiring with your entire being to be forgiven and are sorry for all you have done wrong). You must desire to turn from sin and earnestly – diligently – wholeheartedly walk toward Jesus in the truth of His Word.]

I am noticing recently, more than ever, that there is truly a double standard in every area. This is happening at our schools, our jobs, our online communities and even our churches. It is a sad day, when we hide our light under a bushel for the sake of peace. The world systems, especially the US government, say that you should respect those who tell you what to do, even if it goes beyond your beliefs and convictions, because people have died for your ‘freedom’ and if you don’t like it then you should move away.

Well, why can’t we look at Christianity the same way then… Others have died, suffered, gave of themselves completely, so that you could be a Christian – saved by grace and sealed for the day of redemption… so why hide yourself in quiet while others stand yelling to take away your voice and the opportunity for others to share in that ‘true freedom’ of the salvation from eternal death. Where is that respect?

This of course, will not be resolved until the Day of the Lord comes. The world must first come together under one umbrella: one religion, one government, one submission in order to accomplish what the ‘greater good’ sees as their utopian dream of glass houses and brainwave visualization. The world is becoming a cesspool of muddy water, yet they are too blind to see that it is filthy… all they see is that it is all one color and to them, that means unity. To us, Christians on the other hand, it means soon redemption… so look up, for your redemption draweth nigh.

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