We are not the world

February 19, 2018

It’s always good to know who your enemies are. And, may I tell you, beyond the shadow of any doubt or peradventure, that you that you have three enemies at least, and they are three big ones: the world, the flesh, and the devil. And, no Christian can afford to be ignorant of these enemies, for, to be ignorant is to be unprepared, and to be unprepared is to fall and to go down in shame and disgrace and ignominious defeat.

Now, of these three enemies, I want to just take one, and talk to you about that one enemy—and, that one enemy is the world. And, I’ve entitled this message “Your Friendly Enemy,” because the world seems so friendly, so charming, so innocuous, sometimes beautiful, sometimes helpful, sometimes harmless. But, I want to warn you that what the Bible calls the world is an enemy and a deadly enemy.

Now, what do we mean when we say the world? We have to be very careful because we’re certainly not talking about the earth—Planet Earth. Sometimes the word cosmos, that’s translated “world,” speaks of Planet Earth. For example, it does, in Acts 17, where the Bible says the Lord made the world and everything that is in it (Acts 17:24). There’s nothing evil about the rocks and the trees, the birds, the ocean, the fields, the mountains. Thank God for these things. Jesus said, “Consider the lilies how they grow” (Luke 12:27).

There’s nothing wrong with the material physical universe, and never think that there is. And, when the Bible warns about the world, it’s not warning about Planet Earth. Do you have that?

When the Bible warns about the world, it’s not warning about the people of the world. The Bible says, in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son” (John 3:16). There, he’s talking about the people of the world. Now, if God loves those people, we ought to love them. “Red and yellow, black, and white, they are precious in His sight.” He’s not talking, therefore, about the physical universe or the physical earth, he’s not talking about the people, some 5 billion of them now that live on Planet Earth.

When the Bible uses the word world, what does the Bible mean? When the Bible says, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world”—1 John 2:15? Well, it’s the word cosmos. And, what does that mean? It means a system, an order.

there is a system that the Bible calls the world, which is the world of wickedness—and we’re told, not to love it. 1 John 2:15: “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love [this system], the love of the Father is not in him” (1 John 2:15).

What we are talking about—this ungodly system—first of all, it has a prince. The prince of the world is the devil. Now, the Bible makes that plain. For example, in John 12:31, Jesus called the devil “the prince of this world” (John 12:31). What Jesus meant by that, is that Satan rules this ungodly system. He is the prince of this world. In John 14:30, again, he says, “The prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me” (John 14:30). That is, Jesus had no itch the devil could scratch. But, there again, Jesus called the devil “the prince of this world.” And, in John 16:11, He spoke, “of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged” (John 16:11).

This world has a prince, and the prince of this world is Satan himself. That’s the reason the Apostle John said, in 1 John 5:19, “And we know that… the whole world lieth in wickedness” (1 John 5:19). The whole world, the whole system, lies in wickedness. And, the word wickedness there may be personified. It literally means the whole world lies in “the wicked one.” And, the word lieth there actually means, “to sleep in the bosom, or the lap, of one.” That is, Satan’s got this whole world in his hand.

We sing “God’s got the whole world in His hands,” but, actually, the Bible says that Satan has this world in his hands. This whole world lieth, sleepeth, in the bosom, in the lap, of the wicked one. So the world—put it down, number one—has a prince.

There is an enticing network of ideas and values that the devil has skillfully woven together in order to attract you as a child of God. For example, 1 Corinthians 2:12, speaks of the spirit of this world (1 Corinthians 2:12). 1 Corinthians 3:19, speaks of the wisdom of this world (1 Corinthians 3:19). 1 Corinthians 7:31, speaks of the passion of this world (1 Corinthians 7:31). And, so it doesn’t matter whether it’s from the schoolhouse to the courthouse, from Madison Avenue to Wall Street, whether it’s Hollywood or your neighborhood—it makes no difference. There is a philosophy that is permeating all that we see out there, and, my dear friend, it is your enemy.

The world wears a cloak or disguise, whenever a freedom is taken away from you that means the world is winning. Think of every dictator, every socialist, that is the world, trying to control all you do. Who rules the world, the devil, who controls the tv you watch, the media you listen to and read, the devil. If you haven’t put on the filter of God’s word and spirit you are being brainwashed into believing one thing. That you need the world, the system, government to take care of you. No self-reliance, no individuality, no ability to protect yourself.

Here sign up for free food, free housing, free education, free health care, surely you’ve heard the saying “there’s no such thing as a free lunch” there is no such thing as free, all this free stuff is borne on the back of the taxpayer, the distribution of wealth, socialism.

So any political figure in any country that promises to take care of you by robbing you of God given rights and freedoms is of the world and therefore of the devil. So how comfortable do you want to be? That’s what it really comes down to.

Now there is a difference between being provided for by God and a handout.

That moron standing on the street corner with the cardboard sign reading “God bless you.” is part the world, he’s depending on your guilt that your comfortable. He’s telling you he deserves to be taken care of, by you!

Ok, my blood pressure is shooting up, stay tuned.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

Next time you feel overwhelmed by your obligations, consider what it must have been like for Moses. For the ancient Israelites, Moses served as the chief leader, primary lawgiver (delivering God’s laws) and sole judge in disputes.

 When Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, heard about these duties, he offered wise insight: “What you are doing is not good. You and these people who come to you will only wear yourselves out. The work is too heavy for you; you cannot handle it alone” (Ex 18:17–18).

Jethro recommended appointing other capable and trustworthy men to be judges. As he said, “That will make your load lighter, because they will share it with you” (v. 22).

 For Christians, helping to share one another’s burdens is not just good advice; it’s a way we fulfill the law of Christ (see Gal 6:2).

  Some of you wonder what you are supposed to do with your life. Here is a vocation that will bring you more satisfaction than if you became a millionaire ten times over: Develop the extraordinary skill for detecting the burdens of others and devote yourself daily to making them lighter.

  Here are three ways to hone the skill of burden bearing:

  1. Be watchful for indirect opportunities—In many cases, we can’t bear others’ burdens directly. We can’t often take their place or do their tasks for them. We can, however, help them indirectly by reducing other strains and distractions in their life.

  1. Be willing to do small deeds—“So many of our good deeds are so small,” “They seem paltry. Instead of handing over the keys to a brand new car, we hand over a slightly over-cooked casserole. Instead of funding an extreme makeover for that person’s home, we show up on Saturday morning to help apply a new coat of paint.”

  1. Be ready for the boring—Burden bearing is often boring. It’s not exciting work that will garner you lots of attention. But it’s work that is absolutely essential. Don’t wait for a future time when you can be a hero; just be a help right now.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Robin M, 16 years of drug addiction, 23 years clean, her mom and dad both passed away within 8 days of each other. They were her grounding, pray she gets closer to the Lord.

Pray for Jessie d, in the early morning fog, his truck struck a hitch-hiker, the guy is in the hospital with a concussion, several broken bones and a ruptured spleen. The Highway patrol is still investigating.

 

the hard way

February 17, 2018

  “Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creation, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:39).

  John 3:16: The Savior laid down His life for His enemies. Have you ever thought of John 3:16 in that light? God, knowing that there would be those that would turn their backs on the greatest gift ever and the few who would accept the gift.

 1 John 3:16: We are to “lay down our lives for the brethren.” The death of the Cross spells love for both friend and enemy.

  “If we get a wrong idea about the inward working of the Cross we shall lose our own enjoyment of God’s love and fail to manifest that love to others. We have no doubt that, for the sinner, the Cross is the outstanding expression of God’s love, but when we realize that it brings us, as believers, into a very personal experience of being crucified together with Christ, we are apt to lose sight of the love of God.

  “We set our teeth, as though making up our minds that from now on everything is going to be grim and harsh. It almost seems that the carnal Christian may be cheerful and happy, but the crucified ones must expect to pass into a gloomier experience. Nothing is farther from the truth. The Cross will always bring us back to the love of God in ever-increasing fulness.”

The challenge of the Cross, the insistence that we have been crucified with Christ, may sometimes appear to be a dark and forbidding message. The Cross is not the end: It is the way through to His end. God is working for something beyond the immediate; He is working towards the glory.

  “I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end” (Jer. 29:11).

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

No Exceptions

February 16, 2018

  Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him” (Ps. 37:7).

  Lincoln said that “a short speech requires great preparation; a long speech can be given anytime on short notice.” Now, are we going to “spend our years as a tale that is told” (Ps. 90:9); or are we going to settle down and grow in the image of our eternal Lord?

In our spiritual experience we often find that not least of our trials is the fact that God seems so slow to respond; sometimes it would appear that He is careless or indifferent—and that just when our needs are most acute. Two of the major elements in the spiritual life and experience of His own are the seemingly slow and hidden ways of God, and the demand for persistent faith in His servants.

  “The work of God in the lives of His people is designed to make them ‘partakers of His holiness.’ He undertakes their training in His school with the intention that, however difficult in practice the course may be, it will yield ‘the peaceable fruit of righteousness’ in the lives of those who undergo it.

This evidently represents His norm—no shortcuts and no exceptions. At least, He did not make an exception of Abraham, or Joseph, or Moses, or any of the great men and women whose names are listed in the eleventh chapter of Hebrews. Their training lasted for decades and led them into painful situations and difficult places. But their lives, as a result, were incomparably fruitful.

  “My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from Him” (Ps. 62:5).

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Matthew who became quite ill yesterday and spent a large part of the day in the emergency room.

Pray for Barbara D, who also is rather ill.

You trusted God to save you, but now you’re not trusting God to keep you? We trust God for spiritual things, but we can’t trust Him for material things. We’re trusting God for all eternity, but we can’t trust Him for next week.

when you’re out of the will of God, it doesn’t matter how many good things you think you’re doing because if you’re out of the will of God, the total result is sin, and you are wasting your time.

if you were ever going to live by faith, you ought to live by faith now.

“Whatever a man does without God, in that thing he will fail miserably, or he will succeed even more miserably.”

The way to live the Christian life is by faith. And, you stay where God put you, you do what God tells you, and you by faith obey God in spite of consequences or circumstances.

I call it a “hopscotch religion”, change churches every other week, pray one day, miss the next six, read your bible one day, miss a month. Make a promise to God and never keep it.

Moving never solves a problem, changing marriages won’t make you happier, bigger house, bigger truck, you get my point. Be satisfied with what God gave you, not what other people can give you.

the most miserable man in the world is not an unsaved man. The most miserable man in the world is a saved man out of fellowship with God.

It’s an old-fashioned term, often not heard in sermons anymore. Repentance.

you’re going to find God right where you left Him.

You don’t need a new thing, you need the right thing. Get right with God again.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

The School of Faith

February 12, 2018

THE SCHOOL OF FAITH (PART ONE)

Your accomplishment is measured by your faith. Matthew 9:29 says that according to your faith be it unto you. Do you want to please God? People do all kinds of thing to please God. They go on pilgrimages, they give money, they make sacrifices, and some of them dress in strange ways and do outlandish things. Do you want me to tell you how to please God? Believe Him. Without faith it is impossible to please God. Faith pleases God, because faith honors God. And, by the way, if you please God, it doesn’t matter whom you displease. And, if you displease God, it doesn’t matter whom you do please. And, the way to please God is to believe God.

Faith overcomes the world. Are you having troubles and struggling? Is this world oppressing you and weighting you down? The Bible says in 1 John 5:4: “And this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.” You say, “Pastor, I’ve got a mountain of problems.” Our Lord says in Mark 11:23: “If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove.” I do not have the vocabulary, words, or emotion enough today to emphasize to you the importance of faith.

And if someone ever comes to you whether in print or radio, TV or online claiming they have found the secret, or they have the formula, or they know it all, don’t believe them. I’ve been a serious Bible student for almost 45 years. Bible college, Seminary, Doctoral degree, post-doctoral studies, pastor, professor, psychologist, street preacher. And I’ll tell you one thing I’ve learned, I’m as ignorant as a rock. The depths, and the heights of the Word of Truth, unfathomable, it’s like a diamond mind that never gives up all it’s secrets easily.

Now that’s not to be a discouraging statement, we are like builders, we have the shoulders of past giants to stand on. We have great books and sermons to guide us. But each and every great truth has to be relearned, rediscovered, reapplied. Head knowledge alone is worthless without the Holy Spirit making application, “making it real” in our lives.

Pick one bible and make all your notes in that bible, when it wears out buy the same bible and transfer all the notes over again, you’ll be surprised at the great gems you’ve discovered in your pilgrimage. And some stuff will make no sense at all, don’t erase it, there was a certain setting in time where it was important. Plus there will be stuff you wrote that now you know is just flat wrong. Don’t erase it, but mark it as incorrect and write the truth next to it and the source. Every quote you write down, write, who, when and where.

(As side note, only buy bibles in premium leather, calfskin or kangaroo, with Smyth binding. It will never wear out if cared for; as your bonded leather will give up the ghost no matter what you paid for it. Leonard’s bookbinding can resew it and put quality, premium leather on it, it will become a family heirloom. One last thing, lay your bibles on their sides, not upright like a regular book, you will ruin the ‘yap’ on the bottom).(now don’t panic, there is a church in Michigan??? That makes a premium KJV bible for under 100 dollars with large print and great paper and premium leather. just look up church bible printers(??) or email me.) if money isn’t an object than go to evangelicalbibles.com and the best hand sewn or Smyth Sewn with premium leather and the best paper and the text is lined up on each side of every page so there is no shadow or bleed through of text. Expect to pay up to $300 dollars for Schuyler Caxton Bible in any version you like and it will last a lifetime. Like a carpenter that has learned to buy the best tools for a lifetime, this is the same principle. I have my great, great grandmother’s bible, I don’t know how she could have afforded it, but it is a treasure to see her handwriting and the little notes or even a family recipe stuck in it, not to mention the genealogy written down with a few pictures as well.

Sorry got side tracked there.

Abraham was the Dean in the School of Faith, but he had to learn some lessons himself. At this time he was very young in the faith. And, God now brings him into the land of famine, as we’re going to see, for one purpose and one purpose only, and that is to test him. But, he failed the test. Now, my dear friend, God’s going to test your faith. Not because He doesn’t love you, but because He does love you. If you don’t remember anything else that I’m going to tell you today, I’m going to tell you this. A faith that cannot be tested, cannot be trusted. How do you that you have the real thing? How can you trust what you have if it’s not been tested? Now, God will test you. Peter taught the same thing. 1 Peter 1:7: “That the trial of your faith”—that is the testing of your faith—”being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire” or through fire. Now, what Peter says is that your faith is worth more than gold. But, you test gold to make certain that it’s real gold and not fools gold.

Stay tuned for part two

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

LIGHT

February 11, 2018

Jesus was in Jerusalem at the Feast of Tabernacles. During that feast, as we’ve seen, the Jews performed a ceremony where a priest went to the Pool of Siloam, drew water in a golden pitcher, and returned in procession to the temple, where he poured it out at the base of the altar. It commemorated God’s provision of water from the rock that sustained Israel in the wilderness. It was in connection with that ceremony that Jesus proclaimed whoever drank of Him would have rivers of living water flowing from his innermost being.

At that same feast, the Jews performed another ceremony where they lit four huge candelabras or torches in the Court of the Women in the temple, commemorating the fact that the Lord had been a pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night to protect and guide Israel in that desolate desert for 40 years. That cloud appeared on the day when Israel left Egypt, standing as a barrier between them and Pharaoh’s armies on the night before they crossed the Red Sea. Then as it went with them in that wilderness, it was a graphic symbol of the fact that the Lord God was with His people.

Here’s what amazes me, Jesus fulfilled every Old Testament prophecy, yet the Jews didn’t believe. Today we tell people that He is the light of the world, still no response.

If you know anything about end-time prophecy (a topic I never post about and may have to change that) Jesus coming back again is not like a lamb or the hippie dude in the robe and sandals. It will be as a victorious conqueror and Lord of all.

God is long-suffering and patient, but time will run out. You get to choose where you want to spend eternity. God doesn’t send anyone to hell, we choose our own path.

Choose.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Linda R, widowed at 33, 4 kids, she is moving back to her parents but they are strapped. Pray for a blessing for this family that has gone through so much.

Pray for Ron L, knee surgery on Tuesday.

 

PEACE AND LOVE BABY

February 10, 2018

I don’t know whether you know what humanism is, but humanism is the pervading philosophy of the media, Hollywood, today. Humanism is a philosophy that makes man the center of the circumference of everything. Now the humanists are an actual organization. That is, there is an American Humanist Association, and they make their goals very clear and very plain. But there are a lot of people who are not members of the Humanist Association who are humanists at heart.

Now, simply defined, humanism is man’s attempt to solve the problems of mankind independent of God. Man’s attempt to solve humanity’s problems apart from God. Now, one of the leading humanists has written this for you and for me to understand what humanism is all about, and I quote precisely: Humanism is the viewpoint that human happiness is its own justification and requires no sanction or support from supernatural sources.

Plain English, be happy and leave God out of it. Listen to it again: Humanism is the viewpoint that human happiness is its own justification and requires no sanction or support from supernatural sources.

But the most dangerous part of humanism is they don’t believe in an eternity. And without the concept of eternity there can be nothing sacred.

So we can do anything we want, with our mind, our bodies, there is no morality.

We need to confront people with eternity, with the love of God. Do you know why the “Jesus Movement” was so big in the late 60’s and 70’s? Love, baby, love. It was like the book of Acts, all over. Now granted there were a lot of cults back then and high drug use (that’s a pun), but churches were filled. The long hairs and the bald, flower power and grannies. If the church would stop all it’s in house fighting and love at least the brothers and sister in the body of Christ, we’d see church evangelism begin to flourish.

It starts at home, love and peace, peace and love baby.

Rock on.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Hee Haw

February 8, 2018

Hee Haw

Somebody asked me the other day why I preach more from the Old Testament

than the New Testament. My answer was instant, heartfelt and I don’t think I’ll

change my mind anytime soon.

It’s the same reason I’ve called this devotional site “scum like us church”

I personally relate better to the people of the O.T. their failures, their quirks, their

constant failing. When asked ‘whom am I more like in the O.T.’ my answer is

quick, simple and still probably not going to change; Balaam’s Ass, (because I’m

still surprised what comes out of my mouth) and Samson (a good looking woman

still turns my head, and physical strength has helped me get through a lot of

scrapes).

Most people just shake their head and walk away, a few will say “you’re kidding”

some will smile, some get insulted. I can’t see myself ever saying I’m like the

apostle Paul or like any other apostle for that much, even Thomas with all his

doubts still beats me at my best .

I love all the Greek word studies of the N.T. and the book of Romans and

Colossians will probably always be my favorites. But when it comes to the O.T.

flawed folks rock.

So like any good country song here’s to all the screwed up people we know.

God bless

Prayer request for me, pray for my neck, talk about screwed up, (no I didn’t twist

it looking at a pretty girl) I’m in some serious pain. Thank you to all the wonderful

people that keep encouraging me to keep writing these devotions.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

 

NEARER MY GOD TO THEE

February 7, 2018

Nearer My God to Thee (hopefully you all are familiar with this song).

  But now in Christ Jesus ye who once were far off are made near by the blood of Christ” (Eph 2:13).

  Until we know our position in the risen Lord Jesus, we can never really face up to the sinfulness of our old nature. But “hidden with Christ in God,” we can both face up to and face away from the old, “looking unto Jesus, the author and perfecter [marg.] of our faith” (Heb. 12:2).

God sets me in nearness to Himself in the Lord Jesus; and as I learn my nearness to Him, I am prepared for the exposure of my natural distance from Him, and I am, through grace, morally apart and sheltered from it (Rom. 8:9), at the very moment when I see it. The greater my height, the greater the enormity of the depth appears; but I am safe from it. As a consequence I ‘rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh’ (Phil. 3:3).”

Two things mark spiritual growth; one is a deeper sense of the sinful old nature, the other is a greater longing after the Lord Jesus Christ. The sinfulness is discovered and felt as the power of the Holy Spirit increases; for many a thought and act passes without pain to the conscience where the Lord Jesus is less before the soul, which will be refused and condemned as the knowledge of the Lord increases in spiritual power within.

  “When the Lord Jesus Christ is number one in our lives, things unlike Him drop off like dead leaves.”

  “For the word of God is living, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb. 4:12).

Pray for Jim K, met him today at my barber, retired Marine, was in ‘Nam from 66-69, (the wild years), swears it had no affect on him, nor does he have PTSD, just divorced 3 times, an alcoholic, prescription pill abuser and anger management issues. But swears he’s ok. Only comes to town for breakfast tacos, gas and a haircut. Pray for him anyway.