The Heavens Declare the Glory of God, the Firmament the Work of His Hand

The Heavens Declare the Glory of God, the Firmament the Work of His Hand

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Thursday, December 29, 2011

"One of the most popular beliefs of the day is that God loves everybody, and the very fact that it is so popular with all classes ought to be enough to arouse the suspicions of those who are subject to the Word of Truth. God's love towards all His creatures is the favorite tenet of those who do not know His Word. So widely has this dogma been proclaimed, and so comforting it is to the heart which is at enmity with God, we have little hope of convincing many of there error, for it is God and God alone that can change the heart of man.

To tell the rejector of Truth that God loves him is to cauterize his conscience as well as to afford him a sense of security in his sins. The fact is, the love of God is a truth for the saints only, and to present it to the enemies of God is to take the children's bread and to cast it to the dogs."  [A.W. Pink]

As 2011 draws to a close and 2012 begins with the promise of wars and rumors of war, economic downturns, growing apostasy within the church, civil unrest... let us bow before our Saviour and give thanks for all that He has given to us that are called by His Name.

Determine in 2012 to pray for those whom God has placed in your path - pray for those who know Him to walk more closely with Him, to increase in knowledge and faith.  Pray for those who do not know Him that hearts would be softened to receive the Good News and repent for ~

time is short, we must bow our knee and pray.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

"Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, saying, 'Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.” Matthew 2:1-2

Kjos Ministries asks:

'Were the wise men surprised when no one could answer their question? Did they wonder why the people in Jerusalem were so ignorant of this long-expected event? Why would such a King not be honored in His own homeland?

So well might similar questions be asked about America. Why do so few delight in God's Word? Why has our government banned the Ten Commandments and other vital truths from our schools and public places? Why does it promote immorality and censor Christianity? Why do people despise His moral guidelines and malign His name?

Like the faithful Magi, all true believers share a common desire to worship His majesty, obey His Word, follow His guidance, spread His Truth and share His love with all He puts in our path.'

"You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore." Psalm 16:11

'Those pleasures may not be the delights the world seeks these days. Like the pagan world that surrounded the Magi and the distracted world of old Jerusalem, so the world that surrounds us is blind to the far greater joy that God gives His people.'

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment [as seen from God's eternity], is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. " 2 Corinthians 4:16-17

How blessed are those who belong to Him for such a time as this.

Monday, December 19, 2011

A song for the season, or have we missed something? I submit for your consideration, perhaps...

Read the words again, carefully - slowly.

"Joy To The World"
by Isaac Watts - 1719

Joy to the world! the Lord is come; Let earth receive her King; Let every heart prepare him room, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven, and heaven, and nature sing.

Joy to the world! the Saviour reigns; Let men their songs employ; While fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat, repeat the sounding joy.

No more let sins and sorrows grow, Nor thorns infest the ground; He comes to make His blessings flow, Far as the curse is found, Far as the curse is found, Far as, far as, the curse is found.

He rules the world with truth and grace, And makes the nations prove, The glories of His righteousness, And wonders of His love, And wonders of His love, And wonders, wonders, of His love.

Did the things spoken of in this song happen when Jesus the Messiah was born as a babe and placed in a manger? Does He now rule the world with truth and grace? Are there still sins and sorrows, do thorns still infest the ground? Do the nations prove the glories of His righteousness and see the wonders of His love? Is our Saviour reigning or does satan still have dominion over this world?

If NOT - when will they.?.   perhaps...

Only when our LORD returns in the millennium. Only then will He rule in the hearts and minds of man. Only then will all the things spoken of in this song be fulfilled.

When you sing this song, or hear these words, look ahead and share the gospel with those who are lost,

...time is short.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Our sovereign King -- born into time as Man and risen in eternity as Saviour -- doesn't do things our way. His more excellent ways confound the world's most noble dreams and heart-felt sympathies. They always have! Contrary to our feel-good presumption about God and whatever "new thing" we attribute to Him, His narrow way rarely matches our wide gateways to "success."

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.... In Him was life, and the life was the light of men." John 1:1-3

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

'One of the greatest dangers to Christianity today is the deliberate suppression of biblical truth for the sake of unity.

Amazingly, we seldom hear warnings against apostasy from our pulpits. Rarely are false teachers, who seductively lead people away from the true faith, exposed. Few Christians are warning the church of these ferocious wolves dressed in sheep's clothing.

Tragically, the evangelical community continues to move away from sound doctrine for the cause of unity. This only fuels the fires of ecumenism. When church leaders are willing to suppress doctrinal truth they are allowing the walls that separate the church from the world to come down. Doctrine is what divides believers from unbelievers. While unity and brotherhood sound wonderful to a hostile world, the Bible condemns any unity that is not founded in God's truth.

Biblical unity is not man-made, but man is exhorted to keep it. Biblical unity is impossible apart from the one true and settled faith taught by the Apostles. God's people are called upon to "earnestly contend for the faith once delivered unto the saints" (Jude 3). There is no spiritual unity between those who believe the Gospel and those who do not. True Christian unity is modeled when believers are united together in mind, faith and purpose to serve the Lord Jesus Christ, while submitting to the authority of His Word.

The Bible exhorts us to test all teachers and spirits and expose false teachings and the evil deeds of darkness, not to embrace our differences for the sake of unity.'  [portions from an article by Mike Gendron - the entire article can be found at:   http://www.pro-gospel.org/ ]

"Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him. Do not add to His words, lest He rebuke you, and you be found a liar." Proverbs 30:5-6

Sunday, December 11, 2011

In the dim light of human nature, our Sovereign King doesn’t fit man's vision of interfaith unity. His Way is too narrow, His Word far too offensive!

He warned us about spiritual war and persecution;

"Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you." 1 John 3:13

Never mind that He created the universe and has each day, from beginning to end, written in His Book. Never mind that He alone can fulfill our longing for genuine peace and lasting joy. His guidelines still enrage the world, including many who call themselves Christians. His call for holiness disturbing their comfort zone.

Watching our complacency, our Lord may be sad, but He is never surprised. Long ago, He stood in Jerusalem watching a world too blinded by sin and Satan, too distracted by their wants and ambitions to see the Saviour in their midst.

"If you had known the things that make for your peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes." Luke 19:42

Human nature doesn’t change with time, nor does the spiritual war raging against Jesus Christ, His Word, and His followers. The world will tolerate pretty stars, angels, Christmas trees, in rare cases a peaceful baby sleeping in a manger, and Santa Claus;

But there is still no room in the inn for the King.

Kjos Ministries
Where is Christ in Christmas

Thursday, December 8, 2011

With a humble heart, I come before the LORD, asking for nothing, just to say

THANK YOU

...while the words of this song ring in my ear:

How can I say thanks for the things You have done for me, Things so undeserved - yet You give to prove Your love for me -The voices of a million angels cannot express my gratitude.  All that I am or ever hope to be ~ I owe it all to Thee.

To God be the glory, To God be the glory, To God be the glory,  For the things he has done...

I recognize I am but dust, and as tears well up in my eyes, I gratefully acknowledge ~ I am but a sinner ~ saved by His Amazing Grace.

He is Risen, I'm forgiven - Hallelujah.!!.

Pause for a moment - Join me - as together we say

THANK YOU and PRAISE THE LORD.!.

Monday, December 5, 2011

As we look around at churches in America, as we listen to pastors, seldom are we repulsed by their lukewarm, tolerant messages nor shaken by their reluctance to stand for truth. As we sit in our comfort zones unaffected by their support of unbiblical, ungodly behaviour;  as Joel Osteen, 'America's pastor', announces he has partnered with Survivor producer Mark Burnett to create a reality TV show Osteen likens to Extreme Home Makeover, saying, "It's another way to take our message of hope and inspiring others to another venue … we wanted to do something that inspires people and makes them better,"  many never blink an eye, fewer still take the time to pray against this evil slithering across the pews and pulpits of American churches today.

We must not ignore the words of Paul to Timothy:

"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths." 2 Timothy 4

nor the writings of Jude, half brother of our LORD:

"...In the last time there will be mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts.” These are the ones who cause divisions, worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit."

But most importantly, we cannot,  we must not ignore the Words of our LORD:

"For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.” Mark 8:38

Friday, December 2, 2011

'Chrislam, which purports to join Islam and Christianity into one harmonious, synthesized religion, is fast becoming a rallying point in some American church circles.

But, understand this:

* Allah is NOT Jehovah
* The Jesus of Islam is NOT the Jesus of the Bible
* The Bible does NOT harmonize with the Qur'an
* Salvation by faith is NOT available through Islam
* Chrislam is neither Christian nor Muslim

Movements like these only gain ground because Christians either do not know their Bibles or because they are unwilling to resist heresy for fear of being ridiculed and labeled as politically incorrect, hate mongers, narrow or bigoted.' [Take A Stand Ministries]

"Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things..." 2 Timothy 4:2-5

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

“But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is." Mark 13:32-33

The European Union meltdown is heading into high gear as warning signs continue to flash. Even though President Obama said he was keen to see the eurozone crisis end: "the United States stands ready to do our part to help Europe resolve this issue. This is of huge importance to our economy..." there is not enough money in the world to bail out Europe along with all the debt  the United States has and continues to create.

The Middle East is  surging toward an all-out war. Hezbollah is under the control of Iran. As Kaytusha missiles are fired from Lebanon into Israel one must ask: "is Iran sending a message to Israel - 'get ready for war?'"

How much longer can war be restrained? How long before Europe implodes?

Is the Rapture closer than we can imagine? Is it time to start the countdown; the Day of the LORD, the battle of Armageddon, the Second Coming of the LORD Jesus Christ with His church? All the warning signs are flashing,  sirens are blasting -- God's judgments on this world are about to begin...

and time is running out.

Monday, November 28, 2011

"If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? . . . Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? ...Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us!

For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:31-39

Thursday, November 24, 2011

God commands us to give Him thanks for everything He has done, is doing and will do for us.

"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God"  Philippians. 4:6

 "In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you"  1 Thessalonians 5:18

 "Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men" 1 Timothy 2:1

 "Giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" Ephesians 5:20

But this is not the normal response of the sinful heart of man. Even in times of health and prosperity, we fail to genuinely thank God for all that He has given us.

In Luke 17 we read of the LORD cleansing ten lepers, yet only one returned to give thanks to God. Many thousands were physically healed by the Lord Jesus during His earthly ministry, thousands were provided food, others delivered from demonic oppression, yet few really believed in Him as God or accepted Him as Saviour. Adam and Eve, knew God, but failed to glorify Him as God, or obey Him as LORD.

How many took the time this Thanksgiving to acknowledge that:

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change." James 1:17

or truly gave thanks for all that God has given?

If you didn't ~~ it's not too late.

[Thanks to Dr. John Whitcomb for his insight leading to this post.]

Saturday, November 19, 2011

"In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ." 1 Peter1:6-7

'Untested faith may be true faith, but it is sure to be small faith, and it is likely to remain little as long as it is without trials. Faith never prospers so well as when all things are against her: Tempests are her trainers, and bolts of lightning are her illuminators.

When a calm reigns on the sea, spread the sails as you will, the ship does not move to its harbor; for on a slumbering ocean the keel sleeps too. Let the winds rush and howl, and let the waters lift themselves, though the vessel may rock and her deck may be washed with waves and her mast may creak under the pressure of the full and swelling sail, it is then that she makes headway toward her desired haven.

No flowers are as lovely a blue as those that grow at the foot of the frozen glacier; no stars gleam as brightly as those that glisten in the midnight sky; no water tastes as sweet as that which springs up in the desert sand; and no faith is so precious as that which lives and triumphs in adversity.

Tested faith brings experience. You could not have believed your own weakness if you had not been compelled to pass through the rivers; and you would never have known God’s strength if you had not been supported in the flood. Faith increases in quality, assurance, and intensity the more it is exercised with tribulation. Faith is precious, and its trial is precious too.

Do not let this, however, discourage those who are young in faith. You will have trials enough without seeking them: The full portion will be measured out to you in due course.

Meanwhile, if you cannot yet claim the result of long experience, thank God for what grace you have; praise Him for that degree of holy confidence you have now attained: Walk according to that rule, and you will still have more and more of the blessing of God, until your faith will remove mountains and conquer impossibilities.'

Days of testing are coming. Will you be able to say with confidence:

"When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold. My foot has held fast to His steps; I have kept His way and not turned aside. I have not departed from the commandment of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food." Job 23:10-12

Testing the Genuineness of our Faith, by
Pastor Charles Haddon Spurgeon, 1834-1892

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Written by a street preacher in Nashville:

I live in Nashville where more Bibles are printed than anywhere else in the world. We have more Christian publishing houses in Nashville than anywhere else on the face of the earth – more churches per square mile – and, outside the Vatican, a greater percentage of bodies in buildings on Sunday morning than anywhere else on earth. So we in Nashville have a better chance to get it right,  wouldn’t you say??

We have 1000 churches and 4000 homeless people living and dying under bridges and in culverts. I know because I have prayed with them and lain with them as they died, and every week I feed and pastor them. We can’t even get it right enough for every church to reach out to 4 homeless people. And yes, that includes children as young as they get.

Nashville is the headquarters for a swag of church denominations, and para church organizations like the Gideons, and from this buckle on the Bible belt of the richest nation on earth, missions go out all round the globe. Those missions are funded with .01 percent of all monies collected in North American churches.

That’s right! For every $1000 collected by North American churches, ONE Dollar is sent to evangelize those who have never heard the name “Jesus” - but from the latest stats, are probably well aware of the name “Coca Cola”.

And frankly, whereas I once despaired of these manifest failures of the church, now I say, Bring it on! Let the world see forever the rich failures of putting religion before Jesus, ritual before relationship, rules before lives and liturgy before love.

When the world at large finally see that the emperor has no clothes, so also will the light of the real gospel of grace and peace shine the brighter. For where sin abounded, grace did much more abound!

Let it get darker, our Jesus will shine brighter.

"...Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? 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..." Matthew 25

Monday, November 7, 2011

Outside my kitchen window, children played hide-and-seek. I had to laugh at some of their funny hiding places.

Many decades ago, I played their game. Into my mind flashed hiding places that felt cozy enough to sleep in. Others were cramped, cold and hard. Like some of the challenging places God assigns to His children today, I thought.

My hiding place in God -- the place or circumstance where He keeps me safe in Him -- may not always be comfortable by my finite human standard. But whether pleasant or painful for the moment, it fits His plan for my growth, ministry and protection. There, "under the shadow of the Almighty," I am safe from stalking enemies from the inside (such as pride, anger and self-indulgence) as well as the outside (all the threats and troubles of today's changing world).

Because He drew me to Himself and saved me through the Cross, He will continue to guide and train me. He always does -- in His chosen places.

My King may use any part of His creation to keep me in His presence. By hiding rebellious Jonah three days in the belly of "a great fish," He provided safety from the sea, proof of His sovereignty, and the personal humbling needed for Jonah to follow God's command.

By hiding Israel 400 grueling years of slavery in Egypt, God unified His people and guarded them from the rising corruption in Canaan, their ultimate destination.

I trust that He will always choose the hiding place for me that best prepares me for tomorrow's challenges. It may not look or feel like a hiding place designed by my Father's wise and loving hand. But as I rest in Him, He will accomplish His purpose.

"I will give you the treasures of darkness," my King assures me, "and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that I, the LORD, who calls you by your name, am the God of Israel."

God, my wonderful Lord and King, is my Hiding Place today and forever. Yet, every day I have a choice to make: Will I rest peacefully in His plan and provision? Or will I try to run from Him as Jonah did. If I would be foolish enough to turn away, I trust my Shepherd to remind me, and I had better listen as He tests the firmness of my faith:

"Am I a God at hand... and not a God afar off? Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him?" Jeremiah 23:23-24

My heart's desire is to live in total union with my King -- every hour of every day. And since "[I] have died with Christ," my "life is hidden with Christ in God." When I rest in Him, I am confident that "in the time of trouble He shall hide me..."

That precious promise is repeated again and again in His Word. Those who belong to Him are safe no matter what lies ahead. Shepherd-king David knew that. In the midst of a flood of painful circumstances, he cried out to His Lord:

"Oh, how great is Your goodness, Which You have laid up for those who fear You, Which You have prepared for those who trust in You In the presence of the sons of men! You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence...
Blessed be the Lord, For He has shown me His marvelous kindness!" Psalm31:19-21

In Him alone I am safe!

There, I will "be still and know that He is God!" Psalm 46:10

[Berit Kjos ~ Kjos Ministries]

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

David Wilkerson writes:

'The seventh chapter of Micah contains one of the most powerful messages on the new covenant ever preached. In this incredible sermon, Micah is speaking to natural Israel—yet he is also speaking to the church of Jesus Christ in these last days. He begins his sermon with a heartbroken cry—one that is still being heard from spiritually starved believers around the world today:

“Woe is me! . . . There is no cluster to eat” Micah 7:1

Micah is describing the effect of a famine in Israel—a famine of food and of God’s Word. It echoes the words of an earlier prophecy by Amos where the Lord says:

“Behold, the days are coming . . .that I will send a famine on the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord. They shall . . .run to and fro, seeking the word of the Lord, but shall not find it.” Amos 8:11–12

It was harvest time in Israel and the vineyards should have been bursting with fruit, but there were no clusters hanging from the vines. Micah watched as people went into the vineyards looking for fruit to pick and finding none. In his prophetic eye, Micah saw multitudes in the last days running from place to place, seeking to hear a true word from God. He envisioned believers scurrying from church to church, from revival to revival, from nation to nation—all seeking to satisfy a hunger and thirst for something to nourish
their souls. The cry is still heard, “Woe is me—there is no cluster!”

There is a great famine in the land. Yet, in spite of multitudes running about looking for spiritual food, those who truly desire God’s Word comprise only a remnant (see Micah 7:14, 18). This is certainly as true today as it was in ancient Israel. Few Christians today truly hunger to hear the pure word of the Lord. Instead, the majority fatten themselves on Sodom’s apples, feeding on the straw of perverted gospels.'

"Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: ‘This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men." Mark 7:6-8

Sunday, October 30, 2011

My life took a radical turn two weeks ago as I endured grueling total knee replacement surgery. Oft I've heard that in the valley one produces the best fruit, but I was less than enthusiastic to find out if this be true.

As I made my preparations, I prayed and prayed some more. I secured prayer warriors from around the globe who would pray with me and for me. I packed, prepared and prayed some more.

I prayed, 'LORD, I trust You to take care of me. I pray You will be with me and protect me, guide the surgeon... Your will be done...' - but, in my mind I could hear, 'but what if' this happens or that happens? I had faith, but what if...

Then it dawned on me, a light went on, I was not praying in faith, I was praying in doubt. I had the faith to believe until the "what ifs" came rushing in accompanied by a huge lack of trust and perhaps a bit of fear.

What if the what if happened? Would that mean God loved me less, that He had not heard my prayer or that His will did not include His best for me?

Psalm 2:12 says: "Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him."

I came to realize; IF I truly trust Him, does it really matter what happens to me? I could believe I was safe in His arms no matter what surrounded me or choose to live in the 'what ifs'. The choice was mine and mine alone to make.

Psalm 138:8 says: "The LORD will perfect that which concerns me: your mercy, O LORD, endures forever..."

My favorite scripture is a good reminder that the walk of a child of God is a walk of faith and trust and love:

"Though the fig tree should not blossom, And there be no fruit on the vines, Though the yield of the olive should fail, And the fields produce no food, Though the flock should be cut off from the fold, And there be no cattle in the stalls, Yet I will exult in the LORD, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation..." Habakkuk 3

If the "what ifs"  did not matter to Habakkuk or to King David why should they matter to me? Why should my faith be any less than theirs? This 'revelation' has freed me to praise Him, to trust Him; thanking Him for all that is in my life, loving Him as my Father, allowing Him to love me as His child.

It will be two weeks on 1 November since the surgery and it can truthfully be said "it has not been easy', but I did plant a fruit tree along the way.

Monday, October 17, 2011

"Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth..." 2 Timothy 3

 Gandhi knew Christian scriptures and quoted the words of Christ frequently. There was a beautiful picture of Jesus Christ hanging on the wall over his desk. Gandhi studied the scriptures and was tremendously attracted to them, but came to the conclusion that there was nothing special in the scriptures which he had not gotten in his own Hindu teachings;

"to be a good Hindu also meant that I would be a good Christian. There was no need for me to convert to Christianity to be a believer in the beauty of the teachings of Jesus or try to follow His example," he said.

"Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian..." Acts 26

Although Steve Jobs was not Christian, but identified himself as a Buddhist, President of the Southern Baptist Theology Seminary Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. writes on his blog:

"Christians considering the life and death of Steve Jobs will do well to remember once again the power of an individual life. God has invested massive creative abilities in his human creatures. These are often used for good, and sometimes deployed to evil ends. Steve Jobs devoted his life to a technological dream that he thought would empower humanity. Christians can learn a thing or two from his life."

"As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ." Colossians 2:6-8

Michele Baldwin, practicing Buddhist, mother of three discovered recently her cervical cancer had advanced rapidly through her system.

How would you spend your final days if you learned you had developed incurable cancer and had only about six months to live?

Michele Baldwin is leaving her family and going on a pilgrimage to India, embarking on a 700-mile expedition down "the sacred" Ganges River. 'The Ganges idea came like "a little secret" whispered in her ear' she said.

These are but a few of the sad reminders of the lost and dying among us. Gandhi, Steve Jobs, Michelle Baldwin, your Uncle Charley, your Cousin Amy, or... 

Tens of thousands die daily, entering eternity only to realize:

"...we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away..." Isaiah 64:4

Jesus speaking these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said:

'Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent." John 17:1-3

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Seek your strength through prayer.

The streets of downtown Manhattan have been crowded for several weeks with members of the Occupy Wall Street movement protesting corporate greed.

Chanting “We are the 99 percent” and “Tax, tax, tax the rich,” demonstrators march down Michigan Avenue in Chicago.

Protesters affiliated with Occupy Wall Street plan to demonstrate outside the homes of  some of New York's wealthiest residents'. The wealthy are being targeted for what event organizers call a “willingness to hoard wealth at the expense of the 99%.”

Scores of men and women are out of work, hundreds of thousands live off unemployment and other government subsidized programs. With home foreclosures at an all-time high and food prices steadily on the rise, Americans seek a worldly fix for a spiritual problem...

and therein lies the problem.

"... in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!" 2 Timothy 3:1-14

We have allowed God to be removed from our schools and government buildings. We have allowed the ordination of homosexual clergy, the killing of millions of babies, 'gays' in the military, and worshiped the god of mammon, position and power.

We stood by in silence while laws were passed legalizing same sex marriage,  ignored Southern Decadence and gay pride parades, and watched as our president stated Christians and Muslims worship the same God...

 all the while calling ourselves a "christian nation."

Pastors across the nation offer watered down messages without substance or biblical truth. In an effort to be 'relevant' they ignore the gospel in favor of the good times. We have pastors teaching there is no hell, while others teach God wants you healthy, happy and prosperous.

Our LORD has made it clear: My people perish from lack of knowledge.

"...take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly. For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man." Luke 21:34-36

As storm clouds gather on the horizon - I fear many are ill prepared for what is coming upon this earth. Man gives no thought to the things of God - and churches remain silent. Mankind is taught to give to get, go for the gusto and  grab the brass ring... but not to acknowledge sin nor repent and seek forgiveness.

"They served their idols, which became a snare to them." Psalm 106:36

Righteousness has been replaced with equal rights, repentance with riots, spirituality with socialism and man is left to wander aimlessly without hope, without peace, without God.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Great News!

Once again The New York Times best seller list includes a christian book:

HEAVEN IS FOR REAL, by Todd Burpo came in #2 in the combined print and e-book nonfiction category, and #1 in the paperback nonfiction category.

And who could resist.

Cute and cuddly Colton Burpo, two months shy of his fourth birthday, son of an evangelical pastor in Imperial, Nebraska, rushed into emergency surgery with a burst appendix and awoke with an astonishing story: He had died and gone to heaven.

Thomas Nelson, says the book has broken company sales records. The publisher, began with an initial printing of 40,000 copies. Since then it has gone back to press 22 times, with more than 1.5 million copies in print, and counting.

“We all are perhaps desperate to know what is on the other side of the veil after we die” said Matt Baugher, vice president of Thomas Nelson.

Perhaps Mr. Baugher is correct in his assumption - 'we are all desperate to know...' so let us examine the evidence Colton has presented,  proving -

Heaven is For Real.

Colton tells us that "All the people have a light above their head." [perhaps he means a halo].

A halo exists in children’s Bible stories and in Renaissance art, but not in scripture.  Revelation 21:14 describes those in heaven as wearing 'fine linen, white and clean' but no mention is made of a light above their heads.

Colton says that Jesus has a rainbow horse, and he got to pet him. Again in Revelation, [19:11,14] the horse mentioned is always white.

When ask about God's throne, Colton says it is 'big, really big'. He said that Jesus sits on one side of God and the angel Gabriel on the other.

Yet in Luke 1, when Gabriel foretells John the Baptist’s birth and says, 'I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God…'

Colton says: They brought in a little chair for me, and I sat by God the Holy Spirit and then goes on to claim that is where he met his great-grandpa, also sitting on a throne by the Holy Spirit.

But John in Revelation 4 gives us a much different account of the throne:

"…At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and carnelian. A rainbow, resembling an emerald, encircled the throne. Surrounding the throne were 24 other thrones, and seated on them were 24 elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumbles and peals of thunder. Before the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God..."

[thanks to moms in need of mercy for the invaluable book review]

'While in Heaven Colton says  he was upset because he "did not know what was happening" and so "He (God) used people or things that I liked to calm me down. From there on I felt better." That anyone, even if he is a small child, would feel any kind of fear, confusion, or apprehension in the presence of the omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent God in Heaven is doubtful.' [Justin Peters]

Is Heaven for Real.?. ABSOLUTELY.

Does the book Heaven is for Real give us the information we need to see 'what is on the other side of the veil after we die'?

NOT according to scripture.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Mitt Romney is an 'Outstanding Christian.'

OR - at least Pat Robertson thinks so.

Robertson likes Mitt Romney’s politics and sees the Mormon presidential candidate as an “outstanding Christian.”

"As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ." Colossians 2:6-8

Christians are rising en masse to support Rick Perry for president. Governor Perry has involved himself with those in the New Apostolic Reformation [NAR], The Dominionist Movement, Latter Rain, Kansas City Prophets, Third Wave, Joel’s Army, Manifest(ed) Sons of God, Five-Fold Ministry and The International House of Prayer [IHOP].

"And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber." 1 Peter 2:2-3

In an interview on CNN, Joel Osteen, pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston said:

"I could vote for a Jewish candidate, I think I could vote for a Muslim president, but 90% of America is Christian so I’m pretty sure I’d find somebody that more shares my beliefs."  [perhaps 90% of America 'calls' themselves 'Christian' - but I see no evidence that 90% of America is 'christian' ].

Charismatic Lakewood Church pastor and best-selling author Joel Osteen is sharing his message with capacity crowds at arenas across the nation. Fans drive in droves to see Joel Osteen and hear his popular sermons! Join one of the most famous televangelists for a special night of encouragement, inspiration, and worship! Buy your Joel Osteen tickets now!

"... if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. "For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus’ sake. For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God...." 2 Corinthians 4:3-6

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Out of nearly 1,300 Christians surveyed, 88% believe that the church is being swayed by those who promote a worldly belief system contrary to sound Biblical teaching. Eight percent were unsure while four percent felt strongly that the church was not being infiltrated by false teachers. [christiannet.com]

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 ... 2 Pet. 2:1

 'Whatever it may be in our Christian experience that originates outside of Scriptures should, for that very reason, be suspect until it can be shown to be in accord with them.

If it should be found to be contrary to the Word of revealed truth no true Christian will accept it as being from God. However high the emotional content, no experience can be proved to be genuine unless we can find chapter and verse authority for it in Scriptures. "To the word and to the testimony" must always be the last and final proof.

Whatever is new or singular should also be viewed with caution until it can furnish scriptural proof of its validity. Throughout the twentieth century quite a number of unscriptural notions have gained acceptance among Christians by claiming that they were among truths that were to be revealed in the last days.

The truth is that the Bible does not teach that there will be new light and advanced spiritual experiences in the latter days; it teaches the exact opposite! Nothing in Daniel or the New Testament epistles can be tortured into advocating the idea that we of the end of the Christian era shall enjoy light that was not known at its beginning.

Beware of any man who claims to be wiser than the apostles or holier than the martyrs of the Early Church. The best way to deal with him is to rise and leave his presence!'

A. W. Tozer
Renewed Day By Day: A Daily Devotional

Friday, September 30, 2011

"Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth..."
2 Timothy 3

The last straw arrived today -- another 'christian chain letter.'

Perhaps it's just me - but I am tired of fortune cookie theology, of chain letters sent via email disguised as both christian and prayer:

emails oft including wonderful scripture, perhaps a fabulous inspirational photo: then lain bare - stripped of its value - headed for the trash by the addition of such drivel as:

"God told me to tell you that everything you're going through is taken care of. If you believe in Him send to 8 people, and in 53 seconds watch who calls" [Why 53, why not 60 or 30? Calls? Why calls?? and  if I don't send this to 8 people am I disqualified as a believer?]

"When you receive this, say a prayer, then send this to all your friends and relatives...Three things will happen to you this coming week:
(1) You will find favor with someone you don't expect; (2) You will be too relevant to be ignored; (3) You will encounter God and you will never remain the same." [So if I don't sent this to all my friends and relatives will I loose favor, become irrelevant, not encounter God and forever remain the same?]

"Today God has confirmed the end of your sufferings, sorrows and pain because HE that sits on the throne has remembered you. He has taken away the hardships and given you JOY. He will never let you down. I knocked at heaven's door this morning, God asked me.. My child! What can I do for you? And I said, 'Father, please protect and bless the person reading this message...." [I think this speaks for itself in its erroneous twist of scripture.]

It is getting more and more difficult to speak the truth in love. I have repeatedly ask to not be included in these 'chain gang letters' yet they continue to arrive. Why is it so difficult to see the foolishness, the twisting of truth, the false gospel included in these posts?

Why do those sending this not recognize the truth from the lie?

Looking at scripture, recognizing these are the last days, perhaps this is the way it must be.
From the teachings of Paul Washer:

“God saved you from God. It was God who was arrayed in the armour and weaponry of a soldier. Coming after you. In His holiness, and His justice. God coming after you. To do vengeance against you. To cause you to pay for all that you have done against Him, and He is able to return His sword to the sheath now because Christ has died. Christ saved you from the wrath of an almighty God. Hell is just a revelation of that. I always tell people this. God saved you from Himself, God saved you for Himself and God saved you by Himself.

“People tell me judge not lest ye be judged. I always tell them, twist not scripture lest ye be like satan.”

“The work is hindered. The glory of God is tarnished and it is because the people of God no longer know how to discern the things of God.”

Thursday, September 29, 2011

"There is an energy in the world, a spark, an electricity that everything is plugged into. The Greeks called it zoe, the mystics call it 'Spirit,' and Obi-Wan called it 'the Force.' ...This energy, spark, and electricity that pulses through all of creation sustains it, fuels it, and keeps it going. Growing, evolving, reproducing..." Rob Bell, Love Wins, pp.144-145.

"[Jesus] will always transcend whatever cages and labels are created to contain and name him, especially the one called 'Christianity.'...Jesus himself...demonstrates how seriously he takes his role of saving and rescuing and redeeming not just everything, but everybody." Rob Bell, Love Wins, pp.150-151]

Rob Bell, who has a unique ability to make God's Truth sound detestable, has resigned his 'pastorate' at Mars Hill to follow a 'calling to share God's love' in new ways... We serve a big God and none of this is shocking to him. All we can do is embrace a future that is going to be brilliant."

"...there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies.... And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed." 2 Peter 2:1-3

 "When they had twisted a crown of thorns, they put it on His head.... And they bowed the knee before Him and mocked Him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews!' Then they spat on Him... struck Him... [and] led Him away to be crucified. " Matthew 27:29-31

Monday, September 26, 2011

Romans 10:2 speaks of those who have a “zeal for God but not according to knowledge.”

Scripture clearly states that salvation depends entirely on the grace of God:

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” Ephesians 2:8-9

Let us therefore be cautious in following any teaching that suggests that Christ’s work was/is incomplete or unnecessary, or that there are other paths to God.

Jesus said:

“I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.” John 14:6

Thursday, September 22, 2011

And the LORD said:

"...I will build MY church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Matthew 16:18 

There is the Roman Catholic Church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and Jehovah' Witness. There are Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian,  Lutheran and Church of Christ. There are mega churches and mini churches, churches from Texas to Taiwan from Michigan to Mexico ---

some pray to Mary as mediator, looking to her as an object of trust for answered prayer, still others forbid the use of musical instruments in their worship while others embrace drums, key boards and full orchestras. There are churches which have ordained homosexual clergy while others offer 'christian' yoga, soaking prayer and teach we are all gods. There are pastors in prison for their faith while others live in mansions and drive Rolls Royce automobiles...

- all claiming membership in His church.

Have we, the body, the church, failed to understand what our LORD meant when He said: "MY church?"

Zechariah 3:7 says:

"Thus said the LORD of hosts; If you will walk in MY ways, and if you will keep MY charge, then you shall also judge MY house, and shall also keep MY courts, then I will give you..."

Do man-made theologies and ecumenicalism reflect the biblical foundations set forth by our LORD for His church? Has the vision of the Emergent Church, emphasizing tolerance and social justice more than  repentance and belief in the Gospel of Christ brought the church closer or driven it further from what the LORD called -- "MY church?"

"For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it." Matthew 7:14

Are flashy automobiles, ivory towers and Lear jets what first century Christians envisioned when they gave their lives for the gospel rather than compromise their faith or deny their Saviour and LORD? Are posh palaces and thousand dollar suits what pastors and church leaders in Iran, Pakistan, China... dream of as they sit in prison cells awaiting trial for their witness to the saving power of their LORD and Saviour Jesus Christ?  

"I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. Because you say, 'I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,' and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked. I advise you to buy from me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see." Revelation 3:15-18


The organized church has replaced pure Biblical truth with man made doctrines - the way of the cross and the power of the blood is foolishness to those that are perishing.

Today, these essential beliefs, which constitute the power of Christianity, are being subjected to an unparalleled assault from within the Church itself. The Bible says that in the end times people will mock the promises of the Lord.  What is so shocking is that most of the mockery is coming from within the Church!  Dr. David Reagan, Living for Christ in the End Times

God always has a few stalks of wheat among the tares.

John MacArthur says:  'Not everybody bows their knee to Baal. There will always be a few spiritual among the nonspiritual, a few sincere among the hypocrites, a few humble among the proud, a few separated among the worldly and a few regenerate among the unregenerated'

and indeed

~~ the gates of hell shall not prevail against this, HIS church.~~ 

Monday, September 19, 2011

We could hardly miss a 500 pound gorilla in the front room, but too often fail to see the mouse hiding in the corner. We might be more astute and see the mouse but fail to see the fly.

Deception seldom comes roaring in with clanging bells and brass bands. Deception' arrival often goes unnoticed albeit undetected by far too many as each strive to be all they feel the LORD has called them to be. There is something subtly deceptive about deception. Deception all to often goes unnoticed, undetected, unchecked and unchallenged.

For example:

Augustine, loved by so many in the faith, tells us that scripture teaches: "All sinned in Adam" ~ but does it?

J.R.R. Tolkien's “The Lord of the Rings” series remains an extremely popular trilogy among many bible believing Christians. Fascinating millions of readers through its Christian ideals and morals, “The Lord of the Rings” hero, Samwise, is loved for his selflessness, his devotion to his master, and his strength in resisting evil ~ but is this Christianity?

William P. Young, C.S. Lewis and J.K Rowlings; respected by millions within the church as  Christian authors ~ but are they?

The bible does not say “all sinned in Adam” but says: “For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.” 1 Corinthians 15:22

J.R.R. Tolkien, “The Lord of the Rings” series was not biblically based, theologically sound nor Christian in its theme or content. Tolkien himself denied the very thing that some Christians today are claiming, that these fantasies are an allegory of Christ’s victory over the devil. Dungeons and Dragons, which appeared in the early 1970s was based on Tolkien’s fantasy novels.

Repeatedly; witchcraft, sorcery and divination sprang from the pages of novels penned by  'christian' authors C.S. Lewis and J.K. Rowlings. Many within Christendom view the works of Rowlings and Lewis as being where cultural and spiritual issues overlap. Neither author identify the source of the supernatural power in their works, presenting magic as something rather ordinary -- something to be used for good or evil.

William [Paul] Young author of The Shack writes:

 “No matter what God’s power may be, the first aspect of God is never that of absolute Master, the Almighty. It is that of the God who puts Himself on our human level and limits Himself.”

The Shack undermines Scripture and the church, presents a mutilated gospel,  misrepresents biblical teachings concerning the Godhead and offers a New Age understanding of God and the universe.

"The Purpose-Driven Church, The Postmodern Church, The Shack, New Spirituality, Kingdom Now, Word of Faith or the Emergent Church all have as their agenda a major paradigm shift that has affected and will continue to both affect and infiltrate the minds of many evangelical pastors. The shift includes the new evangelical notion that the church must become postmodern in order to reach secular America. The shift includes a definitive move away from belief in absolute truth." Berit Kjos

We must test all things - accepting nothing as truth which cannot be based on the foundation of scripture. In the dark days ahead many will come with new ideas, new ways of doing, new ways of being -remember the words of our LORD:

"Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves." Matthew 10:16

Sunday, September 18, 2011

"... we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.” Acts 4:19

PayPal is conducting an investigation of several pro-family organizations and individuals targeted by a homosexual campaign that accuse the groups of hate and extremism.

The inquiry launched by PayPal comes in apparent response to a campaign by the homosexual group All Out which is asking that PayPal eliminate ten organizations from its service. 'In roughly 60 years homosexuality has gone from being a taboo perversion to a powerful force that punishes those who disagree with same-sex behavior; especially Christians' ~ Peter LaBarbera of AFTAH.

Some who have been targeted include: LifeSiteNews translator and pro-family blogger Julio Severo[Last Days Watchman], the Catholic activist group Tradition, Family, and Property, and Peter LaBarbera’s Americans for Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH).

To sign the petition to protest against the persecution of Pro-Family Christians, visit: (http://profamilyfreedom.net/)
 Or call PayPal at:
1-402-935-2050 (USA)
4:00 AM PST to 10:00 PM Pacific Time Monday through Friday
6:00 AM PST to 8:00 PM Pacific Time Saturday and Sunday

"Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things..." 2 Timothy 4:2-5

Friday, September 16, 2011

Herescope writes:

'Before sending your RSVP to the wedding of Dominique and Political Perry, biblical believers need to remember; our future is not on this present earth.

'Political Perry has proposed marriage to Dominique (NAR & IHOP apostles and prophets) and she has accepted. Political Perry chose for his beloved from a fringe evangelical clan of decendants of the long-forgotten Pentecostal clan called "Latter-Rain." Many among the various clans of evangelicals haven’t even heard about Dominique, or even the clan Latter Rain. But many evangelicals are just content to know that Dominique is from conservative stock and has no relatives among the liberals.

Even though some of Dominique's nearest family members call their leaders apostles and prophets and have plans to start a worldwide struggle to subdue the earth, they are perceived as better than the liberals and have a leftist quest for a one world pagan order.

Dominique has a lot to offer Political Perry to help him become the Republican nominee and become the leader of the free world. Dominique has in place a network of close relatives in every state, even down to the precinct level. Her more distant cousins and other evangelical clans can be counted on later in the national election. The prospective bridegroom is already making friends of Dominique’s closer political friends and extended family...

Political Perry is just another politician looking for votes and power. Dominique is a harlot who would like to use Political Perry—or any other convenient candidate—for a false dominion upon the earth.'

Things are not always as they appear. Beware of wolves in sheep's clothing, wherever they may be found.

To read the complete article, visit: http://herescope.blogspot.com/

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Anne Graham Lotz and Joel Rosenberg spoke with passion as they urged Christians to repent:

"What has lulled you to sleep:  in your personal lives -  in the church?

Some of you might be serving in the church and attending services every week, but are you aware of what is going on around you? Are you sleeping through  God's alarms.

We must start living for Jesus because He is the greatest authority in the universe and praying as if eternity were only a breath away. Churches are so worried about being politically correct they are not paying attention to Jesus."

This is what the Lord Almighty tell us in Haggai 2:6-7, 21-22;

‘In a little while, I will once more shake the heavens and the earth. I will shake all the nations….I will shake the heavens and the earth. I will overturn royal thrones and shatter the power of the foreign kingdoms.”

"Washington is nearly paralyzed with partisan gridlock, Iran is building nuclear weapons, Syria and Libya are slaughtering thousands, Egypt has imploded, and Israel is increasingly threatened; surrounded by her enemies - chastised by her friends.

Storm clouds are gathering, the winds are picking up, tectonic plates are shifting. Sin is destroying the church and the people of God. God’s people must commit themselves to deep prayer, Bible reading, and getting hearts right with the LORD. Bible prophecy tells us that far greater storms are coming as we steadily approach the day of our LORD."

"Why have they provoked me to anger with their carved images and with their foreign idols? The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved." Jeremiah 8

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

We are a designer society. We want everything customized to our personal needs — our clothing, our food, our education.  Now it's our religion.

America is headed for 310 million people with 310 million religions.

Barna's new book on U.S. Christians, Futurecast, tracks changes from 1991 to 2011, in annual national surveys of 1,000 to 1,600 American adults. All the major trend lines of religious belief and behavior ran downward

 — except two.

More people claim they have accepted Jesus as their Saviour and expect to go to heaven ~

And more say they haven't been to church in the past six months except for special occasions such as weddings or funerals.

When Barna measured people by their belief in seven essential doctrines, defined by the National Association of Evangelicals' Statement of Faith, only 7% of those surveyed qualified. People say, 'I believe in God. I believe the Bible is a good book. And then I believe whatever I want'.

"Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made, and he said, did God really say..." Genesis 3

Carol of Zion, Ill.  drifted through a few mainline Protestant denominations in her youth, found a home in the peace and unity message of the Baha'i tradition for several years, and then was drawn deeply into Native American traditional healing practices. She calls herself Christian.

Sheila says: "I can't remember the last time I went to church. My faith has carried me a long way. It's Sheilaism. Just my own little voice. … It's just try to love yourself and be gentle with yourself. You know, I guess, take care of each other. I think God would want us to take care of each other."

Yet Jeremiah tells us: "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?"

Be self-controlled and be alert, because our enemy the devil prowls around
like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

"Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution, how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will." Hebrews 2

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Each life matters. It matters to God and it should matter to us.

September 11, 2001 mattered.

Senate and House, Democrat and Republican stood shoulder-to-shoulder on the steps of the capitol. Displaying a spirit of unity they broke out in an apparent spontaneous chorus of God Bless America.

Except for those who were touched in a personal way, after a few short months  flags were raised from their lowered position, memories began to fade, and focus shifted from 9/11 to Thanksgiving and Christmas ~~

and Americans returned to business as usual.

But each life matters.  It matters to God and it should matter to us.

As millions spent the day [9/11/11] remembering the tenth anniversary of  9/11 - grieving for the people the pride and the feeling of invincibility that had been taken in the twinkling of an eye ~ I wondered: 

How many grieve for the millions of Asians who work from dawn to dusk for a handful of rice while Americans shop WalMart to purchase the products those calloused hands have made? How many grieve for the millions of aborted babies? How many grieve over the brokenness of this world, grieving over the thousands who die daily forever lost in their sins; without love, without hope, without God? How many grieve over homosexual clergy, same sex marriage, gays in the military, the watered-down perverted gospel spewed across the airways of 'christian' television or the half-truths and tolerant sermons and Love Wins messages heard in far too many American churches, messages that are steadily stealing the souls of men?

How many...?

Each life matters. It matters to God and it should matter to us.

"If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory." Colossians 3:1-4

Friday, September 9, 2011

Complete with swastikas, protesters carry signs outside the Israeli embassy in Cairo which read:

"The Gas Chambers Are Ready!"

Libya, now liberated by the U.S. military under the auspices of NATO, is on a path to becoming the third nation to establish Sharia law as the principal basis for all future constitutional legislation.

With violence ever increasing and the talk of war growing stronger in the Middle East, with the United States suffering deadly tornadoes, with massive rivers overflowing their banks, billion-dollar blizzards, hurricanes, drought and wildfires we grasp at strawmen - our arms hang limp at our side.

We feel powerless - but are we?

"Who has gone up to heaven and come down? Who has gathered up the wind in the hollow of his hands? Who has wrapped up the waters in his cloak? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and the name of his son? Tell me if you know!" Proverbs 30:4

We tune into the news - noon, six and eleven. We must be informed.  We look expectantly to the godless world albeit president, congress, the prime minister, socialism, king or crown to fix the problems. Americans look ahead to the 2012 elections, waiting with anticipation of a change for the better. The godless world of governments, stimulus monies, presidents or kings is neither our problem nor our salvation - yet we stand in awe and wait as if they were.

"I have a plan for the whole earth, a hand of judgment upon all the nations." Isaiah 14:26

We grumble and complain, perhaps we are shocked when  governments of the world act in ungodly ways. But should one expect the ungodly to act in any other way other than: "ungodly?'

"Ye that love the LORD, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked." Psalms 97:10

Far too many Christians today claim to love God, yet tolerate sin, love evil and allow the Word of God to be twisted until it has become unrecognizable. MANY  bare the Name of Christ - but in name only. The church has been infiltrated by error and sin, and the people seemingly love to have it so.

One need not look too far nor too hard before the problem becomes apparent.

Ask the LORD to examine your heart. Examine your place in His kingdom, examine your commitment to follow Him. Look honestly and wait expectantly for Him - but do not trust nor expect the strawman to act on your behalf. We must seek to serve and honor Him with our lives. Our faith, our hope, our trust must be in our LORD and in Him alone.

We must stop looking to sinful godless man to do what only God can do.

"Therefore wait for me, declares the LORD, for the day I will stand up to testify. I have decided to assemble the nations, to gather the kingdoms and to pour out my wrath on them--all my fierce anger. The whole world will be consumed by the fire of my jealous anger." Zephaniah 3:8

Help us LORD our God to look in and not out, to look up and not around - to serve, to hope, to honor, to trust and to wait on You.

"...they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint." Isaiah 40:31

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

"We need to rescue Jesus from our false understanding about Him and what He taught. Jesus true “framing story” must be discovered and proclaimed. And what is this framing story? “The Bible is the story of the partnership between God and humanity to save and transform all of human society and avert global self-destruction”... “Jesus came to launch an insurgency to overthrow that occupying regime. Its goal is to resist the occupation, liberate the planet, and retrain and restore humanity to its original vocation and potential."

"A new heaven and earth are unnecessary because “good will prevail by peace, love, truth, faithfulness, and courageous endurance of suffering.”

Strong words from Brian McLaren and his fellow herdsmen Doug Paggit, Rick Warren, Rob Bell, Jim Wallis, Tony Campolo and a host of others who would rather swallow the lie than follow the LORD.

"The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness." 2 Thessalonians 2: 9-12

Being a true follower of our LORD is not for the faint of heart - but for those who will take up their cross and follow Him, refusing to be swayed by every wind of doctrine. A true follower of our LORD has determined in his heart to finish the race our Creator God has set before us, regardless of the cost.

Are you in or are you out?

Saturday, September 3, 2011

'The world is deathly ill. It is dying. The Great Physician has already signed the death certificate. Yet there is still a great work for Christians to do. They are to be streams of living water, channels of mercy to those who are still in the world. It is possible for them to do this because they are overcomers.

Christians are ambassadors for Christ. They are representatives from Heaven to this dying world. And because of our presence here, things will change.

Sometimes I get frightened as I read the Bible, and as I look in this world and see all of the tribulation and persecution promised by the Bible coming true. Now I can tell you, though, if you too are afraid, that I have just read the last pages. I can now come to shouting “Hallelujah! Hallelujah!” for I have found where it is written that Jesus said, “He that overcometh shall inherit all things: and I will be His God, and he shall be My son.” This is the future and hope of this world. Not that the world will survive — but that we shall be overcomers in the midst of a dying world.'

written by Ms Corrie tenBoom ~ truly a woman of God.

Friday, September 2, 2011

'The mandate for believers in our day is a rescue operation of individual lost souls, not a program of collective global transformation. True believers certainly need to reflect the teachings and love of Christ in every aspect of their lives, but they are to do so first and foremost to please the One who saved them. It may be that some will turn to Christ because of a believer's steadfastness and fruitfulness in the faith, but that will be the exception in this rebellious world, as biblical prophecy clearly indicates.' [the berean call, T. A. McMahon]

"The message of the gospel will never be popular in the world because "the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness....unto the Jews [it is] a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness...." 1 Corinthians 1:18,23

Furthermore, rather than drawing the multitudes to Christ by example, Scripture states, "...all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." 2 Timothy 3:12

Jesus declared: "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated Me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you." John 15:18-19. 

If you are looking for acceptance, recognition, self-esteem. If you hunger for significance know for a certainty that as a 'follower' of our LORD this is not possible.  Our calling is to take up our cross and follow Him.

"And calling the crowd to Him with His disciples, He said to them, “If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? For what can a man give in return for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and of My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels." Mark 8


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

"I was looking for a link to Hurricane Irene with national sin. I did not see any direct connection to Israel whatsoever. I did sense there was a direct connection with sodomy and especially New York State. On July 24, this state began to officially marry homosexuals. Hurricane Irene hit a month later and heavily damaged the state, but I did not post this because it just did not seem strong enough of a link.

A reader of this blog from Vermont sent me the clear link. Vermont was the hardest hit state with record breaking floods and damage. On August 17, just 11 days before the devastating floods the Governor of Vermont married two lesbians in his office. Hurricane Irene formed on August 20 just three days after this "marriage". The people of Vermont voted for this governor knowing full well that he was going to marry homosexuals as this was a campaign pledge. The entire state, in a general sense, is guilty before the Holy God of Israel for electing him. A person or state cannot mock God without repercussions. Nearly all the states that received damage from Hurricane Irene promote homosexual marriage.

This is NOT the end of judgments ~~ more is on the way.

A nation cannot marry homosexuals along with advancing the homosexual agenda and bully Israel to divide the land without hearing from the LORD. Remember, September 20 is the day the military officially will allow open homosexuality and the Palestinians make their application to the United Nations for statehood. It will be very interesting to see what Obama does with Israel at this time. He already is officially on record to divide Israel and Jerusalem. Hurricane Irene just might look like a summer's weekend thunderstorm compared to what is coming.

An earthquake shook Washington, DC and the entire East Coast, days later a hurricane plowed through a huge section of the East Coast, devastating Vermont. All the warning signs are there for imminent destruction of huge sections of America.

I see no hope for America as the vast majority of the church is sitting on the sidelines or hiding in the tall grass. Without the church crying out to the LORD in repentance, there is no hope as the nation has offended the Holy God of Israel.

May the LORD God of Israel protect you during the events that are bearing down on America and the entire world."

John McTernan
http://johnmcternansinsights.blogspot.com/

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Among all the women who have ever lived, the mother of Jesus Christ is the most celebrated, the most venerated... Among Roman Catholics, the Madonna is recognized not only as the Mother of God, but also, according to modern Popes, as the Queen of the Universe, Queen of Heaven, Seat of Wisdom, and even the Spouse of the Holy Spirit." [Time Magazine, "Handmaid or Feminist?"].

Wikipedia writes: Queen of Heaven is a title given to the Blessed Virgin Mary by "Christians", mainly of the Roman Catholic Church, and also, to some extent, in the Anglican, Lutheran, and Eastern Orthodox churches. Mary is called the Queen of Heaven because her Son, Jesus Christ, is the King of Israel and heavenly King of the Universe.

Knowing the Source of ALL Truth is The Word of God, I checked for scripture that would depict Mary as the 'Queen of Heaven' ~~ recognized by millions as the mother of God -

'The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger.' Jeremiah 44

Jeremiah pleaded with the people of Judah, yet they refused to listen: 'As for the word that thou hast spoken unto us in the name of the LORD, we will not hearken unto thee. But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes...

Encyclopedia Britannica:
"Astarte/Ashtoreth is the Queen of Heaven to whom the Canaanites had burned incense and poured libations." Through her identification with the Greek Aphrodite and the Roman Venus, Inanna-Ishtar, the queen of heaven, still survives in Roman Catholic iconography - e.g., as the Virgin Mary standing on the moon."

Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, 1894:
"Queen of Heaven with the ancient Phoenicians, was Astarte; Greeks, Hera; Romans, Juno; Trivia, Hecate, Diana, the Egyptian Isis, etc., were all so called; but with the Roman Catholics it is the Virgin Mary."

"Diana was called the Mother goddess and Queen of heaven, just as Mary is called Mother of god and queen of heaven."

As for Mary being the mother of God - these scriptures seem to speak otherwise:

'In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth'. Genesis 1:1

John tells us that 'God is Spirit'.

Numbers [23] tell us: 'God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man...'

Samuel tells us: 'the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for He is not a man. that He should repent.'

Jeremiah wrote: 'Am I a God at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God afar off? Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the Lord.'

Of ALL the references found in scripture that mentioned the Queen of Heaven, all pointed to idols. false gods inspired by demonic influences to lead many astray, and if it were possible, even the elect.

If the millions in main line denominations are wrong about this most important point of doctrine within their theology, where else might they be found to be in error?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

"Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said...

"Did God really say..." Genesis 3:1


"This place, so modest, so small, is where God chose to first reveal Himself to mankind, and God fills it with His majesty. For as long as man has known God, He has come here to Jerusalem to touch the mantle of the Divine. Three faiths, three paths to God, and while the paths sometimes take us away from each other, they always return here, to Jerusalem.

Be not afraid, know who He is, know His face, know that He is a God of covenants and miracles. We are leaving the age of man-made miracles of spacecraft, and we are entering the age of the miracles of God. Israel need not fear the world's agenda because it will soon see the miracles of God."

Strong words from a strong believer in Joseph Smith and Mormonism ~ Glenn Beck.

But what did God really say about three paths and three faiths:

"...how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard..." Hebrews 2:3

Jesus said...“I AM - The Way, The Truth, and The Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." John 14:6

and of the miracles Beck promises Israel:

“When you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, you will know that its desolation is near." Luke 21

"Therefore the Lord, the LORD Almighty, the Mighty One of Israel, declares: “Ah, I will get relief from My foes and avenge Myself on My enemies. I will turn My hand against you; I will thoroughly purge away your dross and remove all your impurities. I will restore your judges as in days of old, your counselors as at the beginning. Afterward you will be called the City of Righteousness, the Faithful City.” Zion will be redeemed with justice, her penitent ones with righteousness." Isaiah 1:24-27

Yes - there will be miracles and all Israel will be saved, but not until the refiner’s fire spoken of in Zechariah 13:9 sweeps across Israel and all Israel’s impurities are removed and the remnant, those who are alive and remain after the great tribulation spoken of in the Book of the Revelation and the Book of Daniel, are made pure.

Do not be deceived, there are many voices proclaiming:

"Peace, peace,’ when there is no peace."



Monday, August 22, 2011

For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ." (2 Corinthians 4:6)

The light that shines in the soul of a lost sinner when he first comes to know Jesus Christ can only be compared to the light that Christ called forth on Day One of the creation week. We met this God of glory spiritually when we first beheld in our hearts the face of Jesus Christ.

But the face of Jesus Christ was not always deemed so glorious. We read of a time when ungodly men "did . . . spit in his face" (Matthew 26:67), then took a blindfold "to cover his face" (Mark 14:65), and finally, with a rain of terrible blows "struck him on the face" (Luke 22:64). Once His "countenance [was] as Lebanon, excellent as the cedars" (Song of Solomon 5:15), but when they finished their assault, "his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men" (Isaiah 52:14).

"The face of the Lord is against them that do evil" (1 Peter 3:12), however, and the time is coming very soon when all those who have turned their faces from Him will call "to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb" (Revelation 6:16). When finally they will have seen the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ in all its consuming strength, not even the world itself could stand, "from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away" (Revelation 20:11).

For those who have looked on Him in faith, however, this will not be a time of judgment, but blessing, for "they shall see his face" (Revelation 22:4). The face of Jesus Christ, fierce as devouring fire to those He must judge, is glorious in beauty and love to those who believe.   HMM

Have you looked upon Him in faith? 

The time is sooo short.!.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Kjos Ministries reminds us:

'America has been blessed with unusual freedom for more than two centuries. But now -- as multitudes reject God's Word, justify immorality, laugh at evil, and embrace depravity -- the protective walls of justice and integrity are fast eroding. In their place, we see a rising tower of global tyranny.

Americans are no longer safe from the persecution that has tested the faith of Christians through the centuries. In fact, God warns us that the global battle against Biblical Truth will surely intensify. While we don't know His timing, He tells us to be alert -- always ready to follow His way, trust His grace, and demonstrate His strength -- no matter how fierce the foe.'

"For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand." Ephesians 6:12-18

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Joel Osteen, pastor of the largest church in America, tells us to have our best life now, but not of our need to repent and be transformed into the image of our LORD nor that homosexuality is a sin against a Holy God.  Rob Bell of Mars Hill "Bible' Church, Grandville, Michigan [home to between 8 and 10 thousand] tells us not to worry that everybody goes to heaven, when The Word of God expressly teaches otherwise. Televangelist Kenneth Copeland says we are all gods, claiming, Jesus told him: "Don't be disturbed when people accuse you of thinking you are God ... They crucified Me for claiming I was God. I didn't claim that I was God; I just claimed that I walked with Him and that He was in Me. Hallelujah! That's what you're doing..."

and Mark Driscoll, pastor of Mars Hill, Seattle, gives us, in glowing detail, the dreams he 'claims' come from the Holy Spirit, dreams of sexual molestation of children and other sexual behaviour I won't mention ~ dreams clearly from the pit of hell delivered by demonic hordes that surround those who are deceived yet have a form of godliness but deny the power - from these The Word tells us to turn away.

While some churches struggle to pay their light bills and make payroll with only a hand full of congregants - others seemingly grow larger day by day gathering around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear ~ as their audience expands via the Internet and best sellers such as Love Wins and One Thousand Gifts.

Dr. Walter Martin, in the early 1980's warned that it would be Christian broadcasters not just the secular world that would censor the true Christian message, not wanting truth to be proclaimed that would rock the boat or cause them to lose donors. He warns that some of our greatest opposition is going to come from within the church as Christians and Christian broadcasters compromise the truth for popularity.

The answer, once again, found in scripture:

'They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them.' 1 John 4

We should not expect large crowds to gather where Truth is taught. The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. There are exceptions, of course, but these are the exception and not the norm. We are living in times where it will become more difficult as we trudge through the tares of the world to find a stalk of wheat.

'But may the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; may they be happy and joyful'  May songs of joy and victory be sung in the camp of the godly.

For the strong right arm of the LORD has done [and will continue to do]    glorious things!' [Praises found throughout the Book of Praise-Psalms]


Hold on to the truth, stand tall and see the Salvation of our LORD:

'He has performed mighty deeds with His arm; He has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.' Luke 1


Friday, August 12, 2011

'God has a plan, depend upon it:

it were an insult to the Supreme Intellect if we supposed that He worked at random, without plan or method. To some of us it is a truth which we never doubt, that God has one boundless purpose which embraces all things, both things which He permits and things which He ordains.

Without for a moment denying the freedom of the human will, we still believe that the Supreme Wisdom foresees also the curious twistings of human will, and overrules all for His own ends.'    Charles H. Spurgeon

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future..."
Jeremiah 29:11

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

"... we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.” Acts 4:19

Thomas Macauley, a British Parliamentarian, wrote these sobering words about the United States in 1857:

“Your Republic will be as fearfully plundered and laid waste by barbarians in the 20th century as the Roman Empire was in the 5th century, with this difference-the Huns and Vandals who ravaged the Roman Empire came from without, and your Huns and Vandals will have been engendered within your own country."

Robert Bork, in his book Slouching Towards Gomorrah, says,

“American culture is complex and resilient. But it is also not to be denied that there are many aspects of almost every branch of our culture that are worse than ever before and the rot is spreading.”

The homosexual movement continues to propel its agenda forward, tragically affirming America’s deepening slide into the death spiral of judgment described in Romans 1:24-31. Abortion on demand is the law of the land -slaughtering millions of children, gay pride day parades are common place,  same-sex marriage has become legal in many states - with more considering similar legislation, the ordination of openly homosexual men and women in the church is "tolerated."

The domino's continue to fall.

Tragically, we are witnessing the decay and erosion of America today both  morally and economically. We must heed the warning of Thomas Jefferson:

“A government big enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take everything you have.”

"...when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?" Luke 18:21





Monday, August 8, 2011

"I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, "Come!" Revelation 6

Thanks to Sola Sisters for posting the following by John MacArthur:

''The danger of hell is certainly real, and any preacher - especially when trying to reach the unsaved - is not true to the gospel if he avoids this truth. Because it is true, and because it is so terribly important, it MUST be preached and taught. Avoiding it is not only being unfaithful to God's Word but also being unfaithful to the needs of the unsaved. To cry 'Fire!' in a crowded building where there is no fire is not only against the law but extremely cruel and dangerous. But NOT to cry 'Fire!' when a building IS in flames is even more cruel and dangerous. Done in the right spirit and way, warning unbelievers of the dangers of hell is one of the greatest kindnesses we can show them."

This post was confirmation of what I have been thinking for sometime.

As I study The Revelation - I am struck by the parallel of current events - wars and violence, drought and famine, earthquakes -- with those events that happen when the great scroll is opened and the Four Horsemen ride. Perhaps what we are experiencing now is a harbinger, a very small fore-taste of things to come for those who have not chosen to follow our LORD.

As John MacArthur says:  "Done in the right spirit and way, warning unbelievers of the dangers of hell is one of the greatest kindnesses we can show them."

This, I believe is exactly what our loving God is doing before the Horsemen are released by the hand of our Loving Saviour who then becomes our Righteous Judge.

"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." 2 Peter 3:9