The Winking Rock

One night, around ten o’clock, I was sitting on the back porch smoking a cigarette talking to God.  While I was talking to Him, a movement in front and to the left caught my eye.   Look at the rock.

The farthest hole, the one that is a brownish-yellow color (added that for the picture), shook rapidly and then stopped, like a leaf does when the wind blows it.  It did it twice.  There had been a slight breeze, but not enough to even blow the grass.

It appeared that the rock was winking at me.  So I asked God if that was him or a leaf, and He did not answer my question.

The next morning, while I was having a cigarette, I looked at the rock and the leaf was no longer there, I figured the wind blew it away.

That night, again while I was smoking a cigarette, I looked at the rock and the leaf was back.  This surprised me, so I got up to examine it, and there was no leaf.  The hole goes all the way through.  The light from the porch made it appear as though a leaf was in it. 

Therefore I believe that it had been God talking to me since nobody else could make light shake.  Aside from that, the things that I thought He said to me were proven to be true.

City of Rocks, 7th; A Climber’s Guide
By Globe Pequot

City of Rocks has been called Americas premiere granite sport climbing area. Tucked away in the enchanting high desert corner of Idaho state, this unique area continues to attract climbers from around the globe.

The City of Rocks is renowned for its fascinating and often bizarre geography, plentiful moderate climbs as well as famous test-pieces of extreme difficulty. With an inviting combination of rustic western atmosphere, scenic camping and well protected climbs, the City of Rocks is a unique and refreshingly enjoyable experience.

This seventh edition of City of Rocks – A Climbers Guide offers the most thorough and up to date information, maps and topos detailing over 750 high quality climbs. Also included are details on local amenities, camping, geology, biking, hiking and running trails, climbing lore, and other Idaho climbing spots to discover.


Rock Climbing Joshua Tree West

By Globe Pequot

Rock Climbing Joshua Tree West directs you to more than 2,300 rock routes in one of the most popular climbing destinations in the world. This comprehensive guide documents, with unprecedented detail, nearly every climb in the western region of this desert national park: Quail Springs, North Wonderland of Rocks, Lost Horse, Hemingway and Roadside Rocks, Real Hidden Valley, and Hidden Valley Campground and the Outback.

This guide features:

  • Guaranteed binding – if this binding fails, the publisher will replace the book for free
  • Complete written descriptions, recommended gear, and first-ascent information
  • Detailed route photos, topos, and maps
  • Easy-to-follow driving, approach, and descent directions

How this Site Came About

You may wonder how and why I created this site.  First off, I have to tell you that this was God’s idea which I will explain in a minute.  Know that everything that God creates or has created for Him, such as this site, was planned before the beginning of time as we know it.

Let me step back 30 odd years ago when I did not believe in God.  I was a radical teenager in the State of Washington traveling deeper and deeper into no man’s land which led me almost to my death (automobile accident – 1978), into the world of cocaine and to prison (1983).

Prison was where I found out that Jesus Christ is real and when I got out I was willing to let Him enter into my world, but I was not ready to change my ways for Him.  That did not work out to well for me because God does not change for us, we change for Him.

From 1983 to around 1991 I tried to do right with God, but of course I also tried to manipulate Him (don’t scrunch your nose at me, I was a con artist).  From 1992 to 2007 I had done my best to walk His way and to understand Him and do right.

Texas, July of 2007, I was arrested for a crime I did not commit.  I can do the time, I had done 9 years in Washington State, but I was devastated by the charge so I literally begged God to help me out and He told me He would (not audibly).

How did I know that God had actually said He would help me?  I can’t explain it, but believe me, when He talks you know it and it can be a bit frightening.  Yet, since this was the first time He had spoken to me I had to ask Him to make sure it was Him, and it was.

I spent 8 months in jail and in that time I had written my testimony and my mother told me that I should make a cartoon for God.  That sounded like a good idea to me, but I’m a writer not a cartoonist, so I tossed that idea away.

Remember that God told me He would help me, and He doesn’t lie, but since I didn’t know Him at the time I didn’t realize that He was going to help me the best way possible, which was not what I wanted.  I just wanted Him to get me out.

Thanks to Washington State (a long story) instead of looking at 10 years I was looking at doing 35 years in Texas, but I ended up doing 3.

In 2008, in prison, one day God said to me, “Let’s do that cartoon.”  He showed me how he wanted it (He didn’t care that I wasn’t an artist), so I drew it.  Yet, many years later I wasn’t happy with the drawing and asked God to help me learn how to draw a bit better.

If I remember correctly I created the blog in March of 2011, but I first posted it on Facebook and below is what it looked like in January 2011.

 

This is not my site, it belongs to God.  He guides me and directs me in all these pages.  Anything good about it comes from Him, any errors are due to me not hearing Him correctly. 

I’m not saying that each article that I post is because that is what God wants, that is not what I mean.  He gives me complete reign of the site, I can post whatever I want, but sometimes after writing the next day’s page I question if I should post it or not so I ask and sometimes He tells me no so I throw it away and start with a new one.

December of 2010 (6 months after my release) God told me to put Jerry on Facebook.  I had no idea what that was, so He showed me.  A year later He told me that Jerry needed a blog, again, I had no idea what He was talking about, but He showed me.

I had not expected people to read it, I didn’t even think about, but after seeing that over 100,000 people look at this site, which was just a blog, I decided to change it into a website.

So that is how and why it exists.  Thanks and praise God (literally!).


KJV Archaeological Study Bible Bonded Leather,Black
By Edited by Walter C. Kaiser, Jr. & Duane Garrett / Zondervan

Now available in the timeless King James Version, the Archaeological Study Bible features a four-color interior, over 500 full-color photographs, in-text maps, detailed charts, study notes, and cultural facts that bring the ancient biblical world to life.

Full of informative articles and full-color photographs of places and objects from biblical times, this Bible examines the archaeological record surrounding God’s Word and brings the biblical world to life. Your study will be enriched as you become more informed about the empires, places, and peoples of the ancient world.

Features include

  • Four-color interior throughout

  • Bottom-of-page study notes exploring passages that speak on archaeological and cultural facts

  • Articles (520) covering five main categories:

    • Archaeological Sites

    • Cultural and Historical Notes

    • Ancient Peoples and Lands

    • Reliability of the Bible

    • Ancient Texts and Artifacts

  • Approximately 500 four-color photographs interspersed throughout

  • Detailed book introductions that provide basic, at-a-glance information

  • Detailed charts on pertinent topics

  • In-text color maps that assist you in locating the action


KJV Study Bible Large Print, Bonded Leather, Black

By Zondervan

There’s one reason to purchase the Zondervan KJV Study Bible: to understand God’s Word and God’s heart as well as you possibly can. With over 20,000 notes and an abundance of study tools reflecting the forefront of conservative scholarship, this Bible is a veritable resource library designed to help you grasp the Scriptures like never before. It’s packed with theological, archaeological, historical, geographical, cultural, and linguistic information. Simply put, it’s the ultimate King James study Bible.

Features include:

  • 15 pages of full-color maps plus timelines and presentation pages.

  • KJV concordance plus other helpful study and reference tools.

  • Introductions and outlines provide valuable information for each book of the bible.

  • Words of Christ in red letter.

  • In-text maps, charts, diagrams, and illustrations right where you want them—no need to flip pages

  • Large, easy-to-read 10.4-point type

Sources Used for this Site

Atlas of the Bible

By Carl G. Rasmussen/Zondervan

Biblical lands come alive like never before—thanks to the latest 3-D imaging technology. Significantly updated, this colorful atlas now includes an expanded introduction; maps of Greece, Turkey, and Italy; a historical progression through the Old and New Testaments; and chapters on biblical archaeology, geography, and the history of Jerusalem. Ideal for quick reference and detailed study.


Babylon: Mesopotamia and the Birth of Civilization

Civilization was born eight thousand years ago, between the floodplains of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, when migrants from the surrounding mountains and deserts began to create increasingly sophisticated urban societies. In the cities that they built, half of human history took place.

In Babylon, Paul Kriwaczek tells the story of Mesopotamia from the earliest settlements seven thousand years ago to the eclipse of Babylon in the sixth century BCE. Bringing the people of this land to life in vibrant detail, the author chronicles the rise and fall of power during this period and explores the political and social systems, as well as the technical and cultural innovations, which made this land extraordinary. At the heart of this book is the story of Babylon, which rose to prominence under the Amorite king Hammurabi from about 1800 BCE. Even as Babylon’s fortunes waxed and waned, it never lost its allure as the ancient world’s greatest city.


Encyclopedic Dictionary of Cults, Sects, and World Religions, Revised and Updated

By L.A. Nichols, G.A. Mather & A.J. Schmidt / Zondervan

Wondering about the vast array of belief systems in our diverse world? This newly revised and expanded resource provides fast, reliable information on the history and beliefs of today’s religions. Formerly published as The Dictionary of Cults, Sects, Religions, and the Occult, it features up-to-date information on Islam, Freemasonry, Heaven’s Gate, and more. 560 pages, hardcover from Zondervan.


Great Empires: An Illustrated Atlas

Experience what life was like when pharaohs erected the majestic pyramids; when Hannibal commanded Carthage’s 40,000 troops; when Charlemagne was crowned Holy Roman Emperor; and when the drive to conquer defined the destiny of leaders and the lives of ordinary people. Much of human history is destined to be forgotten–but thousands of years have not erased the epic stories of the great empires of the world. Great Empires sweeps through the ages, uncovering the secrets of dynasties from the dawn of human civilization to the 20th century and tracing the path of power around the globe and across the centuries. Each chapter delves into the times, places, and historical forces that gave rise to legendary warriors, charismatic kings, and lasting dynasties. Throughout these epic tales of the great empires we see extraordinary ambition, shrewd calculation, heroic bravery, and surprising foresight–all captured in one complete volume. Organized in chronological order from 2600 B.C. to the 20th century, this comprehensive history weaves together a compelling portrait of more than 30 epic empires using dramatic images, intriguing sidebars, and easy-to-follow time lines. New, meticulously drawn National Geographic maps show the extent of territory held by each empire, major trade routes, paths of military campaigns, locations of principal traded commodities, significant roads, walls and buildings, and sites of pivotal battles. Selected maps also show the changes in physical geography between ancient and modern coastlines. Sidebars, images, and text showcase the historic leaders such as Hammurabi, Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, and Genghis Khan, who had grandiose visions for their world.


Bible History: Old Testament

In this enduring classic, Edersheim explores the broad sweep of Old Testament history. He brings to his work his immense learning and familiarity with Judaism, as well as his love for Scripture and his desire for every Christian to know and understand the story of God’s redemptive work in history.

This new edition of Edersheim’s classic features the following improvements:

  • Entirely reset in a modern and easy-to-read typeface
  • Complete and unabridged in one volume
  • Arabic numbers replace roman numerals
  • New maps to provide for richer understanding

“In writing it “[Bible History: Old Testament]” I have primarily had in view those who teach and those who learn, whether in the school or in the family. But my scope has also been wider. I have wished to furnish, what may be useful for reading in the family, –what indeed may, in some measure, serve the place of a popular exposition of the sacred history. More than this, I hope it may likewise prove a book to put in the hands of students, to show them what the Bible really teaches.”


Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Revised and Expanded

By C. Brand, C.W. Draper & A. England / B&H Books

The Holman Bible Dictionary edited by Trent C. Butler has become one of the best-selling Bible reference tools since its publication in 1991. Now this revised, updated and expanded edition called the Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary offers even greater value to Bible students and teachers with over 250 new articles, new maps and charts, and 90 new contributors. This book is designed both for those who need information quickly and those who want in depth treatments of hundreds of topics. Each entry begins with a brief definition of the word followed by more detailed information. Through its more than 700 full-color graphics, this book brings readers right into the world of the Bible and enables them to better understand the Scriptures.

Features:

  • Exhaustive definitions of people, places, things and events-dealing with every subject in the Bible
  • Over 700 full-color photos, illustrations and charts.
  • Unique scale drawings and reconstructions of biblical places and objects based on careful archaeological research.
  • Over 60 new, full-color maps with map index
  • Major articles on theological topics, collective articles on plants, animals, occupations, etc.
  • Pronunciation guide for all proper nouns and other hard-to-pronounce words.
  • Up-to-date archaeological information from excavations in Israel.
  • Timeline that compares biblical history to world history
  • Summary definitions that begin each entry for quick reference.
  • A variety of Bible translations used-the only dictionary that includes the HCSB, NIV, KJV, RSV, NRSV,REB, NASB, ESV, and TEV.
  • Many articles based on the original languages, but written in a user-friendly style. Technical language and abbreviations are avoided.
  • Extensive cross-referencing of related articles
  • “Quicktabs”: marginal alphabetical guides for quick and easy location of information


Illustrated Bible Dictionary: Based on Articles from the Zondervan Encyclopedia of the Bible

By J.D. Douglas & M.C. Tenney, edited by M. Silva / Zondervan

The Zondervan Illustrated Bible Dictionary provides a visually stimulating journey for anyone interested in learning more about the world of the Bible. Through the articles, sidebars, charts, maps, and full-color images included in this volume, the text of the Old and New Testaments will come alive for you as never before. As a condensation of the Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible, the information contained within this reference work is solid and biblically sound. The material is based completely on the NIV and cross-referenced to the King James Version, and it contains over 7,200 entries, 500 full-color photographs, charts, and illustrations, 75 full-color maps, and a Scripture index … making this wonderful Bible study resource a must-have whether you’re a general reader of the Bible, a pastor, or a student.


Jerusalem: The Biography

By Simon Sebag Montefiore / Vintage

Jerusalem is the universal city, the capital of two peoples, the shrine of three faiths; it is the prize of empires, the site of Judgment Day and the battlefield of today’s clash of civilizations. From King David to Barack Obama, from the birth of Judaism, Christianity and Islam to the Israel-Palestine conflict, this is the epic history of three thousand years of faith, slaughter, fanaticism and coexistence.

How did this small, remote town become the Holy City, the “center of the world” and now the key to peace in the Middle East? In a gripping narrative, dimply entitled Jerusalem: A Biography Simon Sebag Montefiore reveals this ever-changing city in its many incarnations, bringing every epoch and character blazingly to life.

Jerusalem’s biography is told through the wars, love affairs and revelations of the men and women-kings, empresses, prophets, poets, saints, conquerors and whores-who created, destroyed, chronicled and believed in Jerusalem. As well as the many ordinary Jerusalemites who have left their mark on the city, its cast varies from Solomon, Saladin and Suleiman the Magnificent to Cleopatra, Caligula and Churchill; from Abraham to Jesus and Muhammad; from the ancient world of Jezebel, Nebuchadnezzar, Herod and Nero to the modern times of the Kaiser, Disraeli, Mark Twain, Lincoln, Rasputin, Lawrence of Arabia and Moshe Dayan.


King James Study Bible, Scofield, KJV, Large Print Edition Genuine Leather Burgundy, Indexed

By Oxford University Press

Large print edition King James Version The most comprehensive Study Bible available, printed in a large, readable typeface. The perfect edition for pastor, teacher, or anyone desiring extra large, easy-to-read print. The Scofield Study Bible includes: Unique subject chain reference system that follows major Bible themes throughout Scripture. Comprehensive indexes to annotations and subject chain references for thorough topical study. Informative introductions to each book and section with subheadings. Complete chronologies Detailed concordance with intergrated subject index and dictionary of Scripture proper names. Helps on the same page as the text for ready access to vital definitions and explanations Full color maps Red Letter Edition


King James Study Bible,Zondervan, Large Print, Bonded Leather, Burgundy

By Zondervan

With over 20,000 notes and an abundance of study tools reflecting the forefront of conservative scholarship, this Bible is a veritable resource library designed to help you grasp the Scriptures like never before. It’s packed with theological, archaeological, historical, geographical, cultural, and linquistic information. Large print edition, bonded burgundy. Also includes: 15 pages of full-color maps plus timelines and presentation pages, KJV concordance plus other helpful study and reference tools, introductions and outlines provide valuable information for each book of the Bible, and Words of Christ in Red.


Lost Cities of the Ancient World

This book reveals the stories behind some of the world’s most impressive fallen metropolises. Joel Levy explores 28 abandoned cities and settlements, each with a unique and fascinating story to tell.

 

 

 


Nelson’s New Illustrated Bible Manners And Customs How The People Of The Bible Really Lived

The most comprehensive, up-to-date, accurate information on life in Bible times available in one volume for the general reader. How the peope of the Bible really lived. Traces everyday Bible life from Geness to Revelation. More than 400 full color and black & white photographs.

 

 

 


Revelation Revealed

By Jack Van Impe / Thomas Nelson

Centuries before anyone could make sense of these fantastic warnings, the prophets declared that the mysteries of Revelation would not be understood until the Last Days. Verse by verse and chapter by chapter, Jack Van Impe, reviews John’s portrait of history’s final claims.

 

 

 


Rome: An Empire’s Story

By Greg Woolf / Oxford University Press

“In this passionately told exploration, Woolf peers closely at what enabled Rome to resist defeats and capitalize on victories, and how it evolved to face new needs and new threats. With dazzling detail, Woolf retells the long story from Rome’s birth in 753 B.C.E. to the republic, the empire, and the empire’s fall,”—Publishers Weekly. 384 pages, hardcover.

 

 


Rose Book of Bible Maps, Charts & Time Lines – 10th Anniversary Edition

By Rose Publishing

Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps & Time Lines has been a must-have resource for every Pastor, teacher and Bible study leader for the past ten years.

Now get the updated and redesigned Anniversary Edition of this best-selling book, Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps and Time Lines 10th Anniversary Edition!

Enjoy this best-selling book expanded with new charts, upgraded maps highlighting modern-day cities and countries, and up-to-date facts and statistics! Includes 216 reproducible pages of illustrations, charts, and maps on a variety of Bible topics, with two fold-outs of the genealogy of Jesus, cutaway Tabernacle illustration and Bible Time Line.


The Annals of the World

By Master Books

Spanning the years between creation and A.D. 70, Archbishop Ussher’s 17th-century masterpiece recorded world history—and made it! Now his influential classic is available in modern English. Completely indexed, precisely dated, and filled with fascinating historical detail from the ancient world, it’s a must-have reference for your library or classroom. 960 pages, 8.5″ x 11″ softcover from Master Books.


The Illustrated Bible: Story by Story

By DK

Told with all the insight and unique information DK is known for bringing to history, The Illustrated Bible Story by Story not only re-tells the Bible’s most well-known events, but also explains the cultures in which it was written, summarizes primary people and places, and provides maps, timelines, key lists, and location photography. Learn even more about the Bible and let it inspire you to dig deeper into the truth! 510 pages.


The New Lion Bible Encyclopedia

By Mike Beaumont / Lion Hudson

The Bible has made a huge impact on people for thousands of years – and continues to do so today. But what is it? Why does it matter? How was it written, and how did it come down to us? What was it like to live in the time of Jesus, or even earlier? What did people eat and drink? What did they wear?

This fascinating new book will answer all your questions, and more. The New Lion Bible Encyclopedia provides a wonderful guide to the people, the places, the events and the ideas that make up the Bible. With its accessible text, full color pages, illustrations, maps, charts, feature boxes, diagrams and tables, all the information you could ever need is brought together, in one volume, to instruct, delight and entertain. A final ‘Fast Facts’ section brings key facts to the reader’s fingertips.
The Outline of History: The Whole Story of Man (2 Volumes)

Written in the first part of the 20th century, this work was ahead of its time. it delineates the stupidity of mankind through the ages. It also show the restrictive power of organized religion on the education of the human race. the heir-achy of each successive founding of faith ignores the reality of the gift of god in the all too often successful suppression of mankind in order to suppress the masses ans use them to amass wealth for the over-glorified leaders of the CHURCH whatever domination you choose to research. Great read and very enlightening.


The Complete Book of Who’s Who in the Bible

By Philip W. Comfort & Walter A. Elwell / Tyndale House

This book is the ultimate Bible resource providing readers a complete listing of every person in the Bible arranged alphabetically and accompanied by Scripture and descriptions of their lives and accomplishments. It also includes short overviews called Quick Takes on prominent people in the Bible that give information on their strengths, weaknesses and lessons from their lives.

And hundreds and hundreds of websites.

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Who Do You Serve?

Who Do You Serve?

Do you know of King Saul, the first king that ever lived? I kind of feel sorry for Obama because he’s more evil than Saul was (but that might be because of his innate ignorance), and of course, God was not happy with King Saul.

“And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the LORD anointed thee king over Israel? And the LORD sent thee on a journey, and said, Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed. Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD?

And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites.

But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God in Gilgal.

And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king (1 Sam 15:17-23).

Obama and his buddies, mainly the Muslims, are in for a world of hurt. God allows things to happen because He gives us freewill, but the time is coming and they will all pay for it dearly:

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting (Gal 6:7-8).

Also, don’t get confused and think just because you worship and maybe even preach the word of Jesus you are going to heaven, as the above scripture says, God will not be mocked. And Jesus Himself says:

Not everyone that saith unto me; Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he that doeth the will of the Father which is in heaven.

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? And in they name done many wonderful works?

And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity (Matt 7:21-23).

You can’t walk with God and the devil.

He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth (Lk 11:23).

Some people say they have been saved and it doesn’t matter what they do because they can’t lose their salvation. I don’t know where they got that idea, the Bible doesn’t say that, but quite the opposite, and not only that, once you lose your salvation you can’t redeem it.

For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened (saved), and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,

And have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the world to come.

If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh and put him to an open shame (Heb 6:4-6).

For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,

But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries (Heb 10:26-27).

The Invisible War, updated and expanded: What Every Believer Needs to Know about Satan, Demons, and Spiritual Warfare

By Chip Ingram / Baker Books

In a culture where spiritual warfare is everywhere, it’s time to raise the shield of faith and fight the demonic forces at work in this world! Drawing on Ephesians 6, this expanded edition of Ingram’s bestseller reveals what believers need to know in order to prayerfully defend themselves and their families against Satan’s daily attacks. 224 pages, softcover from Baker.

Who Do You Serve?: There Is No Gray Area

By Charlotte A. Roper / WestBow Press

The Secret: A Pathway to Destruction

The Secret:

A Pathway to Destruction

Many people say they aren’t religious, but spiritual. What that means is anyone’s guess because God and Satan are
both spiritual, and neither is religious. Jesus is a holy God and Satan is an evil fallen angel.

Many also say that they don’t believe in God or Satan, that they live their life for them and only for them. Sorry folk’s, that’s not how it works. We are created beings, we have no power or control, all we have is the freewill that God has given us.

That freewill doesn’t say we can ignore God and Satan, that freewill allows us to decide which one we want to service.

He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth (Lk 11:23).

God wants us to be prosperous, but through Him.  There is nothing that we can do without His help or His approval, he is in charge of everything.  The devil can’t even doing anything without God allowing it.  Your success comes from God or the devil, it’s your choice which one, but the successes through the devil are short lived.

Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world.  If any man loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the yes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever (1 Jn 15-17).

As I had said, God controls everything, including money, this is what Moses said:

But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth that he may establish his covenant which he swear unto thy fathers, as it is this day.

And it shall be, if thou do at all forget the LORD thy God, and walk after other gods, and serve them, and worship them, I testify against you this day that ye shall surely perish.

As the nations which the LORD destroyeth before your face, so shall ye perish; because ye would not be obedient unto the voice of the LORD your God (Deut 8:18-20).

The Secret tells you to just wish for things, to imagine things, and you will have them.  That defies God and by going by that book you’re worshipping the devil whether you want to or not (if you think I’m just talking to talk you must be on crack or something).

Anything against God is the work of the devil.  You may not believe you’re worshipping the devil, but in God’s eyes you are.  As the law says, “Ignorance of the law is no excuse,” same with God because He has written His ways in our hearts (2 Cor 3:2-3). 

God is very clear about believing in anything other than Him:

And God spake all these words, saying,

Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 

Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image or any likeness or anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 

Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me (Ex 20: 1, 3-5).

The book is titled correctly because it tells you to believe in yourself as it secretly implies that you don’t need God.  The author (Rhonda Byrne) was bamboozled by the devil to believe such nonsense.  Can’t you see how intelligent and sneaky Satan is?  The devil is no fool, other than the fact that he thought he could over power God (Is 14:12-27 and Eze 28:1-19), those that follow his ways are the fools.

The secret is nothing new, just a different name; it existed centuries before Jesus was even born.  King Nebuchadnezzar believed in God whole heartedly, but he was also tricked into the Secret.  God tells us to trust in Him, nothing else.

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil (Prov 3:5-7).

Why would God say that?  He’s not trying to trick us or control us, He is God so He can control at will.  He created us so He’s much smarter than we are.  He gives us those words because He gives us freewill and He is warning us to beware of the devil. 

God is a loving God and he abhors evil.  He loves us and tries to raise us proper like any good parent would.  He’ll forgive our sins as long as we ask for forgiveness and cease from committing them willingly.  Take a look at what happened to King Nebuchadnezzar when he fell into The Secret’s trap:

Nebuchadnezzar the king, unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you.

I thought it good to shew the signs and wonders that the high God hath wrought toward me.

How great are his signs! And how mighty are his wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and his dominion is from generation to generation.

I Nebuchadnezzar was at rest in mine house, and flourishing in my palace:

I saw a dream which made me afraid, and the thoughts upon my bed and the visions of my head troubled me.

Thus were the visions of mine head in my bed; I saw, and behold a tree in the midst of the earth, and the height thereof was great.

The tree grew, and was strong, and the height thereof reached unto heaven, and the sight thereof to the end of all the earth:

The leaves thereof were fair and the fruit thereof much, and in it was meat for all: the beasts of the field had shadow under it, and the fowls of the heaven dwelt in the boughs thereof, and all flesh was fed of it.

I saw in the visions of my head upon my bed, and, behold, a watcher and a holy one came down from heaven;

He cried aloud, and said thus, Hew down the tree, and cut off his branches, shake off his leaves, and scatter his fruit: let the beasts get away from under it, and the fowls from his branches:

Nevertheless leave the stump of his roots in the earth, even with a band of iron and brass, in the tender grass of the field; and let it be wet with the dew of heaven, and let his portion be with the beasts in the grass of the earth:

Let his heart be changed from man’s, and let a beast’s heart be given unto him; and let seven times pass over him.

The king spake, and said, Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for the house of the kingdom by the might of my power, and for the honor of my majesty?

While the word was in the king’s mouth, there fell a voice from heaven, saying, O king Nebuchadnezzar, to thee it is spoken; The kingdom is departed from thee.

And they shall drive thee from men, and thy dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field: they shall make thee to eat grass as oxen, and seven times shall pass over thee, until thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will.

The same hour was the thing fulfilled upon Nebuchadnezzar: and he was driven from men, and did eat grass as oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, till his hairs were grown like eagles’ feathers, and his nails like birds’ claws.

And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honored him that liveth forever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation:

And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?

At the same time my reason returned unto me; and for the glory of my kingdom, mine honor and brightness returned unto me; and my counselors and my lords sought unto me; and I was established in my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added unto me.

Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgment: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase. (Den 4:1-5, 10-16, and 30-37).

King Nebuchadnezzar wasn’t the only one that got caught up in the things of the world, his son, King Belshazzar was another, but he didn’t come out as good as his dad did.

Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand.

Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem; that the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, might drink therein.

Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank in them.

They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone.

In the same hour came forth fingers of a man’s hand, and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote.

Then the king’s countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another.

The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers.  And the king spake, and said to the wise men of Babylon, Whosoever shall read this writing, and shew me the interpretation thereof, shall be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about his neck, and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.

Then came in all the king’s wise men: but they could not read the writing, nor make known to the king the interpretation thereof.

I have even heard of thee, that the spirit of the gods is in thee, and that light and understanding and excellent wisdom is found in thee.

And now the wise men, the astrologers, have been brought in before me, that they should read this writing, and make known unto me the interpretation thereof: but they could not shew the interpretation of the thing:

And I have heard of thee that thou canst make interpretations, and dissolve doubts: now if thou canst read the writing, and make known to me the interpretation thereof, thou shalt be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about thy neck, and shalt be the third ruler in the kingdom.

Then Daniel answered and said before the king, Let thy gifts be to thyself, and give thy rewards to another; yet I will read the writing unto the king, and make known to him the interpretation.

O thou king, the most high God gave Nebuchadnezzar thy father a kingdom, and majesty, and glory, and honor:

And for the majesty that he gave him, all people, nations, and languages, trembled and feared before him: whom he would he slew; and whom he would he kept alive; and whom he would he set up; and whom he would he put down.

But when his heart was lifted up, and his mind hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him:

And he was driven from the sons of men; and his heart was made like the beasts, and his dwelling was with the wild asses: they fed him with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven; till he knew that the most high God ruled in the kingdom of men, and that he appointeth over it whomsoever he will.

And thou his son, O Belshazzar, hast not humbled thine heart, though thou knewest all this;

But hast lifted up thyself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels of his house before thee, and thou, and thy lords, thy wives, and thy concubines, have drunk wine in them; and thou hast praised the gods of silver, and gold, of brass, iron, wood, and stone, which see not, nor hear, nor know: and the God in whose hand thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, hast thou not glorified:

Then was the part of the hand sent from him; and this writing was written.

And this is the writing that was written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN.

This is the interpretation of the thing: MENE; God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it.

TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.

PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.

Then commanded Belshazzar and they clothed Daniel with scarlet, and put a chain of gold about his neck, and made a proclamation concerning him, that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom.

In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain.

And Darius the Median took the kingdom, being about threescore and two years old. (Dan 5:1-8 and 13-31).

You can believe what you want and think what you want, but the bottom line is that those that don’t accept Jesus and go His way will find themselves in Hell for eternity. 

Many say God won’t do that because He’s a loving God, they’re wrong.  God gives us freewill to spend eternity in heaven with Him or in hell with the devil.  God doesn’t want to live with a bunch of liars, thieves, crooks, perverts, and whatnot.  But if you walk with Jesus life is fantastic!

Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name?  and in thy name have cast out devils?  And in thy name done many wonderful works?

And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity (Matt 7:21-23).

Many people don’t believe that the Old Testament pertains to us because it happened before Jesus was born.  What nonsense, who do you think created the earth and everything?  

Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every created:

For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him.

And he is before all things, and by him all things consist (Col 1:15-17).

Now if you aren’t happy with the above stories since they’re Old Testament stories, then listen to what Jesus Himself has to say:

And he spake a parable unto them saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:

And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?

And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.

And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou has much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.

But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou has provided?

So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God (Lk 12:16-21).

As I had said, Jesus wants us to be prosperous, but through Him, not by imagining that whatever we want will come to us. 

Yet, if you get something by your own imagination know that it didn’t come from God because all good things come from Him (Jas 1:17; Jn 3:27), and if it doesn’t come from God know that you don’t have the power to create it so it came from the devil. 

You disagree?  You think you are Houdini?  You may be because all that Houdini did was a trick which is exactly what the devil will give you.

You can’t go to church and worship God and also see psychics or read The Secret.

No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.  Ye cannot serve God and mammon (Matt 6:24).

Jesus wants you to trust in Him, to love Him as He loves you.  Look to Him for guidance, not your own imagination because when you wander within your own mind you also open the front door inviting the devil in.

Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?

Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?

And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:

And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

(For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof (Matt 6:25-33).

So are you wondering what the kingdom of God is?  Know that is isn’t what The Secret tells you to obtain.

For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink: but righteousness; and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost (Rom 14:17).

Generosity: How God’s Radical Grace Makes Us Givers DVD

By Hendrickson Publishers

According to the Bible, generosity is so much more than just being generous with your money. The source of generosity that is truly radical is a gospel-transformed heart that has received the costly grace of God. In this sermon series originally preached at Redeemer Presbyterian Church, Tim Keller and Abraham Cho look at what it means to be generous through service, through relationships, through hospitality, through the privileges and power we hold, and lastly, through our wealth.

This resource can be used with the seven-session study guide Generosity: Responding to God’s Radical Grace in Community (9781944549008). There is also a 20-day devotional booklet which may be used to supplement this series called Generosity: How God’s Radical Grace Changes Our Perspective on Money & Possessions (9781944549015).

Disc 1

1. Generosity and God’s Grace – Timothy Keller – 33 minutes

2. Generosity and Relationships – Timothy Keller – 39 minutes

3. Hospitality and God’s Grace – Timothy Keller – 38 minutes

4. Generosity and Ministry – Timothy Keller – 32 minutes

Disc 2

5. Generosity and Wealth, Part 1 – Abraham Cho – 32 minutes

6. Generosity and Wealth, Part 2 – Timothy Keller – 33 minutes

7. Generosity and Power – Timothy Keller – 38 minutes


Ministering Through Spiritual Gifts: Recognize Your Personal Gifts and Use Them to Further the Kingdom

By Thomas Nelson

In the ten lessons of Ministering Through Spiritual Gifts, Dr. Charles Stanley encourages you to pinpoint your God-given strengths by exploring the seven gifts in Romans 12. He then challenges you to consciously develop your gifts- not for your own personal gain, but to minister to others and to ultimately bring glory to God.

Dr. Charles Stanley’s Bible study guides feature the insights and wisdom of this beloved pastor and author. Small groups and individuals who want a Bible study that’s spiritually-sound and practical will find a wealth of ideas to help them understand and apply the Scriptures to the real world. Each title takes a unique four-fold approach to get the most out of Bible study time-emphasizing personal identification with the Scripture passage, recognition of your emotional response, reflection of the passage’s meaning and application, and taking steps to apply what’s been learned. This is a sound way to explore the Word of God.

Spread the Good News

Matthew

“No man can serve two masters for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will old to the one, and despise the other.  Ye cannot serve God and mammon” (Matt 6:24).

“Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on.  Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them.  Are ye not much better than they?

Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?

And why take ye thought for raiment?  Consider the lilies of the field how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:

And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? Or, What shall we drink? Or, wherewithal shall we be clothed?

For after all these things do the Gentiles seek: for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself.  Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof ” (Matt 6:25-34).

(For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost – Rom 14:17).

“Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in there at:

Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it” (Matt 7:13-14).

“Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy name done many wonderful works?

And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matt 7:21-23).

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen,” (Matt 28:18-20).

Mark

And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly things, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover” (Mk 16:15-18).

Luke

“And when much people were gathered together, and were come to him out of every city, he spake by a parable:

“A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it.

And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it was withered away, because lacked moisture.

And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it.

And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bear fruit a hundredfold.  And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be?

And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.

Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.

They on the rock are they, which when they hear receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.

And that which fell among thorns are they, which when they have heard go forth, and are choked with cares of riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.

But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart having heard the word, keep it and bring forth fruit with patience” (Lk 8:1-15).

Then he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases.

And he sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick.

And he said unto them, Take nothing for your journey, neither staves, nor scrip, neither bread, neither money; neither have two coats apiece,

And whatsoever house ye enter into, there abide, and thence depart.

And whosoever will not receive you, when ye go out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feet for a testimony against them.

And they departed and went through the towns, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere” (Lk 9:1-6).

And he said, The things which are impossible with men are possible with God” (Lk 18:27).

John

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 

The same was in the beginning with God.

And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth” (Jn 1:1-2 & 14).

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (Jn 3:16).

These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:

As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.

And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou has sent.

I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.

And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.

I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.

Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee.

For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.

I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou has given me; for they are thine.

And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.

And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee.  Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me that they may be one, as we are.

While I was with them in the world, I kept them ion thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.

And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.

I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.

They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

Sanctify them through the truth: thy word is truth.

As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.

And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.

Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;

That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:

I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.

O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me.

And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them”  (Jn 17).

Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side.  Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.

Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so sent I you.

And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

Whosoever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whosoever sins ye retain, they are retained.

But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.

The other disciples therefore said unto him, we have seen the Lord.  But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.

And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.

Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.

And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and My God.

Jesus saith unto him, Thomas because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed” (Jn 20:19-29).

Philippians

“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Phil 4:13).

1 Timothy

“And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up unto glory” (1 Tim 3:16).

James

“Submit yourselves therefore to God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.  Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded” (Jas 4:7-8).

1 Peter

“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Pet 5:6-8).

1 John

“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world.  If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father but is of the world.

And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever” (1 Jn 2:15-17).

“These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

And this is the confidence that we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us:

And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him” (1 Jn 5:13-15).

Revelation

“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me” (Rev 3:21).

“And behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.

I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last” (Rev 22:12-13).


Luther’s Works [LW] Volume 15: Ecclesiastes, Song of Solomon, and the Last Word

By Martin Luther / Concordia Publishing House

This volume contains three works that exemplify and state Luther’s principles of Old Testament exegesis. All three are on less familiar Old Testament texts. All of these texts have, in Luther’s estimation, suffered from intolerable misapprehensions and interpretations.

They stand in need of rescue from obscure translation and interpretation. The notes on Ecclesiastes (1532) admit that Ecclesiastes is one of the more difficult books of the Bible, but Luther points out that the “difficulties” arise because commentators have failed to understand the purpose of the book and have taken no intelligent approach to those strange ways of speaking called Hebraisms.

He shows that Ecclesiastes does not condemn the creatures of God, it condems man’s depraved affections and desires. It does not promote ‘contempt of the world’ nor teach that we ought ‘to be in doubt about the grace and love of God toward us.

Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God: And His Righteousness and All These Things Shall Be Added Unto You

By Julia Floyd Jones / WestBow Press

Prison: A Business

Not everyone in prison deserves to be there, many are just at the wrong place at the wrong time.  Many are innocent. 

There are others that committed the crime they were convicted of but imprisonment is a much greater punishment than the crime itself.  For example, if someone commits the act of rape and is then killed by another, has the killer committed a crime?

If a parent is without food for their child should they let the child starve or do what is necessary to feed them?  According to our laws they have both broken the law, but God says otherwise.

Exodus 20:13, one of the Ten Commandments, says, “Thou shalt not kill.”  He is talking about murder, not proper punishment.

And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life.

Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,

Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe (Ex 21:23-25).

Those that committed a crime without proper cause should be imprisoned accordingly, meaning that the punishment is equal to the crime. 

For example, I did 9 years in Washington State for unarmed robbery.  I did the act due to my need/desire for Cocaine.  Was my sentence fair?  It was more than fair, I got off easy.  Twenty years later, in Texas, I was in my own backyard naked slamming dope and my neighbor’s 16 year boy saw me and because I was already a felon I did 3 years and have to register as a Sex Offender.  Was my sentence fair?  I would say no, but I don’t regret it because from that I got a personal relationship with Jesus.

Hypothetical Situation:

You live next door to me and are told that I’m Sex Offender, but you aren’t told why I’m classified as one so you despise and possibly fear me.

The person on the other side of you is a batterer, or robber, or drug dealer, or murderer, but you aren’t told that.  Is the law on your side?

The laws are no longer made to protect the innocent, but to control the environment.  Prisons are no longer used to keep the innocent safe; they’ve become profitable businesses.

The laws of God in the Old Testament still stand today unless Jesus has made a change in them.  Jesus has not changed or altered the laws noted above, He redefined them:

Ye have heard that it hath been said, an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth;

But I say unto you, that ye resist not evil: but whatsoever shall smite thee on the right cheek, turn to him the other also (Matt 5:38-39).

It sounds like Jesus is saying that we should ignore cruelty and allow the wicked to continue as they are.  On the contrary, He is telling us not to be evil like they are, to punish them with His love, i.e. to set the punishment equal to the crime.  That is what God was saying when He created the eye for an eye law, but man is just too ignorant to understand Him.  This is my perception, I could be wrong.

If you have never done time you haven’t a clue what goes on behind those walls and writers of movies that have prison scenes in them obviously have not been incarcerated because trust me, it is an entirely different world.  It’s nothing like jail.  Prison is a cross between a kennel and being in a foreign country. 

Have you ever had a nightmare where you wanted to scream out of fear but you couldn’t?  If you have, welcome to the beginning of your stay in the penitentiary.

If you have a relative or friend behind bars and are undecided on whether you should send them money, I would say yes send it, even $10 is a lot in prison.  I use Jpay to send money.  Yet, do watch yourself because many will take advantage of your kindness. 

So you ask, “Then why should I help them?”  Just because.  Hopefully my poems “The Boardwalk” and on the “On The Boulevard” will help you understand prison.

Now that I’ve ran my mouth are you wondering if I respect the law?  I respect God’s laws.

Do I trust the police?  Usually, I’d trust a convict first, at least I know what they’ll do or not do.  Yet, not all cops are bad.   The media rarely tells us the good things that cops do, only the bad.

Do I trust politicians?  What, do I sound stupid?

We Become What We Worship: A Biblical Theology of Idolatry
By G.K. Beale / IVP Academic

The heart of the biblical understanding of idolatry, argues Gregory Beale, is that we take on the characteristics of what we worship. Employing Isaiah 6 as his interpretive lens, Beale demonstrates that this understanding of idolatry permeates the whole canon, from Genesis to Revelation. Beale concludes with an application of the biblical notion of idolatry to the challenges of contemporary life.

Finding God in Unexpected Places
By Philip Yancey / Random House, Inc

An Atlanta slum. A pod of whales off the coast of Alaska. The prisons of Peru and Chile. The plays of Shakespeare. A health club in Chicago. For those with eyes to see, traces of God can be found in the most unexpected places. Yet many Christians have not only missed seeing God, they’ve overlooked opportunities to make him visible to those most in need of hope.

In Finding God in Unexpected Places, Philip Yancey serves as an insightful tour guide for those willing to look beyond the obvious, pointing out glimpses of the eternal where few might think to look. Whether finding God among the newspaper headlines, within the church, or on the job, Yancey delves deeply into the commonplace and surfaces with rich spiritual insight. You’ll journey from Ground Zero to the Horn of Africa, and each stop along the way reveals footprints of God, touches of his truth and grace that will prompt you to search deeper within your own life for glimpses of transcendence.

God’s Love For Us Brings Tears to His Eyes

Many do not believe what the Bible says is true, so hear the same thing Moses said from the renowned historian Flavius Josephus.

Know that our actions can make God Himself cry and know that when God says that all non-believers will spend eternity in hell He means it.

Moses came not boldly to the multitude, and informed them that God was moved at their abuse of him, and would inflict punishment upon him, not indeed such as they deserved for their sins, but such as parents inflict on their children, in order to their correction.

For he said, that when he was in the tabernacle, and was bewailing with tears that destruction which was coming upon them God put him in mind what things he had done for them, and what benefits they had received from him, and yet how ungrateful they had been to him, that just now they had been induced, through the timorousness of the spies, to think that their words were truer than his own promise to them; and that on this account, though he would not indeed destroy them all, nor utterly exterminate their nation which he had honored more than any other part of mankind, yet he would nor permit them to take possession of the land of Canaan, nor enjoy its happiness; but would make them wander in the wilderness, and live without a fixed habitation, and without a city, for forty years together, as a punishment for this their transgression; but that he hath promised to give that land to our children, and that he would make them the possessors of those good things which, by your ungoverned passions, you have deprived yourselves of.

When Moses had discoursed thus to them, according to the direction of God, the multitude grieved, and were in affliction; and entreated Moses to procure their reconciliation to God, and to permit them no longer to wander in the wilderness, but to bestow cities upon them; but he replied that God would not admit of any such trial, for that God was not moved to this determination from any human levity or anger, but that he had judicially condemned them to that punishment.

The Complete Works of Flavius Josephus
Legendary Jewish Historian and His Chronicle of Ancient History
Hardcover – October 15, 2008
by translation by William Whiston (Author)

  • Hardcover: 944 pages
  • Publisher: Attic Books; 1St Edition edition (October 15, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0890515492
  • ISBN-13: 978-0890515495
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 2.6 x 11.1 inches

Misery Loves Company, But God Loves Us More

By Adrienne L. Miller / Xulon Press

  • Paperback: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Xulon Press (September 4, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 161579090X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1615790906
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches