Month: April 2013

1 Reason Nations come to ruin


They cast off all restraints… One of the most dangerous things any people, society, culture or nation can do to itself is to cast off all restraint and do whatever seems right in their own eyes. We find this phrase in the dark days of Israel’s history. A period when “everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” Judges 17:6 In our day and time, the absence of restraint is celebrated and applauded. In the words of a song writer, “we exult our rights over and above the one who makes us righteous,” and we use that to justify our behavior or lifestyle. Unfortunately, we fail to realize that this kind of moral, spiritual, and social anarchy brings nothing but destruction. Israel cast off all restraints and they were brought to ruin. Sodom and Gomorrah cast off all restraints and they were brought to ruin. The Roman Empire cast off all restraints and they were brought to ruin. Ephesus, the city where the church was warned to return to its first love, cast off all restraints and they too …

Human life is a pilgrimage between two moments of nakedness


There was a wealthy lady who died, and everybody in the community was extremely curious as to the extent of her fortune. One person was brash enough to come up to the pastor immediately after the funeral and whisper in his ear, “How much did she leave?” The pastor had the wisdom to reply, “She left everything.” The apostle Paul also calls us to a lifestyle of simplicity and contentment. I have learned,” he said, “in whatever state I am therewith to be content Paul said, Godliness with contentment is great gain, for we brought nothing into this world and we shall take nothing out of it. Or as Job put it, Naked I came from my mother’s womb and naked I shall return. Have you ever considered, brothers and sisters, that human life is a pilgrimage between two moments of nakedness? We would be wise to travel light because there is no doubt that we shall leave everything behind. Let us be content. Covetous people always fall into a traps. The love of money is a …

5 Ways to use your tax return


About a week ago we got our tax return in the mail. And every day for the past week, my wife has told me, “Walter we got to talk.” Well, she is right, last year we didn’t talk and the money vanished into thin air. In other words, we spent it carelessly. So, this year, we are considering five options. We are complete in accord with the first one – which for us, is non-negotiable. But the other four, we are still talking about. Please allow me to use these five suggestion to get you thinking about how you are going to use your tax return. Use the 10 percent and over and above principle. If you’ve been faithful paying your tithe throughout the year, you don’t have to give 10 percent this time around on your tax return. If you have paid your tithe correctly, on the gross and not the net, than you really don’t have to give 10 percent, you’re covered. However, there is the over and above principle. That means, you …

Encourage thyself in the Lord Monday


And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God. 1 Sam. 30:6 KJV There is going to come a time in your life when the world around you will seem to be caving in. Your closest friends, trusted colleagues and faithful brothers and sisters will all turn their backs on you. There is going to come a time in your life, when all hell will break loose over you. You will be hard-pressed from every side, and your enemy will seem to have  gained the upper hand or advantage over you. And of course, Mondays will come around once a week to remind you that you are in a dead-end job, and nothing’s working. When that happens, you need to lay hands on yourself and encourage yourself in the Lord. So, listen to this song and tell yourself the following: God is still on His …

3 Signs of a Revived Christian Life


Jesus Christ came so that we can have life and have to the full. To be truly alive to Christ means, we must have his life flowing within our hearts. If you are like me, you’ll admit, that life leaks. Sometimes I am truly on fire and full of spiritual vitality, but other times I experience seasons of dryness. The question is how do I get my spiritual life revived again? An Abiding Presence The first sign of a revived christian life is a life that enjoys the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit. He possesses a fullness that is ever-increasing – from glory to glory. In the words of a famous preacher, it is “something that you don’t have to stir up, crank up, work up.” Too often, revival is about how loud and emotional people can get in a meeting. Don’t get me wrong, I think, when God shows in our meetings it is going to get loud. But too often, people try to reproduce something God did before and act as if …

Holy Worldliness


The church has a double calling: on the one hand to live in the world, and on the other not to conform to the world. The first is a call to worldliness, as opposed to other worldliness—getting involved in the life of the world around us. The second calling is the call to holiness. We have no liberty to respond to one call without the other. Indeed, we may neither preserve our holiness by escaping from the world, nor may we sacrifice our holiness by conforming to the world. Escapism, on the one hand, and conformism, on the other, are equally forbidden to Christian men and women. Instead we are to combine both callings to involvement and to separation. We are to develop what Dr. Alec Vidler, an Anglican scholar of the former generation, in his book “Essays in Liberality called “holy worldliness.” Ezekiel 11:12? “You have not followed my decrees. You have not kept my laws. But you have conformed to the standards of the nations around you.” 2 Kings 17:15: “They imitated the …

Beyond Information to Transformation


Let me begin with a status update from my spiritual father’s Facebook page. He wrote: Reading through Jeremiah and Lamentations in the One Year Bible [really gasping for air].  GOD’s tolerance for dirty living was at “0.”  And my “take away?” 1.  Clean living is valuable. 2.  Clean living’s got to be “on our radar.” 3.  Clean living has to be a from the “inside–out” deal. GOD — please — take GT beyond information to transformation. In this Facebook status update I would like for you to notice just one phrase. Forrest says, “Take GT beyond information to transformation.” For those of you who do not know Pastor Beiser, he is my spiritual father. And he leads a thriving church in San Francisco. This phrase, “beyond information to transformation,” has been one of the driving forces of his life and ministry, at least since I’ve known him. Making disciples  is what he lives for. So, how do you lead people beyond information to transformation? Here are a few suggestions: 1. Pioneer a yearning lifestyle Let your people see your devotion. Don’t …

Broken Cisterns, Fountain of Life


Why do most people fail to look to God solely for their every need? Why do we, knowing the all-sufficiency, providence and faithfulness of God, act like we really don’t believe he is the source of our every need? I mean, words like: come unto me all who are weary and I will give you rest I will supply all your needs according to my riches in glory I daily carry your burdens I am watching over my word to do it for you I am the Lord who heals you all the promises of God are yes, and to his glory the Amen is said I will never leave you nor forsake you all good a perfect gift comes from above, from the father of lights must mean something, right? With Him “is the fountain of life; and in his light we see light. Yet in the face of all these incredible promises, we “commit two evils: we forsake Him, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for ourselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water.” …