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God is….

Hey!

I was sitting on the couch today playing around with my guitar and had the thought to go to Psalm 28. I read down to verse 6, to the words: “Blessed be the Lord because He hath heard the voice of my supplication.” I started to get a little tune for this and to continue with the chorus of the song, I went on to the next verse: “The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him”. I thought, I wonder what else God is. So, I typed in “God is….” in my search program. I got some pretty good results! It felt so good, I wanted to share them. 🙂

God is:
Holy
A consuming fire
Merciful
A jealous God
God of gods
A great God
A mighty God
A terrible God
A refuge
A living God
Mighty in strength and wisdom
King of all the earth
God is our God forever and ever
Our guide, even unto death
He is Judge
Our lawgiver
Our helper
Our defense
Our salvation and glory
Our rock
Our strength
Our keeper
Our maker
Our portion
Our stronghold
God is the God of salvation
He is good
Our King
He is a sun and shield
Greatly to be feared
The rock of my refuge
He is pure
He is our salvation
Our strength and song
He is righteous in all His works
God is true
He is Faithful
He is light
He is love
Longsuffering
Gracious
Full of compassion
Slow to anger

And so much more!

Amy

Not Victims

Good point from Jerry and your Gary.

Looking at these things from another angle John, I was thinking this morning as we were talking, that if we hold on to any grudge about how we, or our ancestors were “treated” by men, then we can’t be thankful for what God has truly done for us NOW.

For example, if (as is being promoted in the media and political circles now), people in this country should be bitter and “demand reparations” because ancestors were made slaves and mistreated by “oppressors”, then how can we ever be thankful to God for making a way for us to be rescued from the jungles, and brought here to America, where we could hear the truth of this gospel and receive the holy Ghost? How can we be angry at those God used to have His way in our lives? God did it! How can we want to make them “pay” for blessing us?

These carnal victim spirits want to turn men’s hearts from right thoughts about God – and the fact that He works ALL things for our good. Let’s not blame our issues on “dead men”. Instead, let’s become one! ha-ha.

God had it ALL worked out for us – we can have, as sister Willie says, “a mouth full of thank you!” (And besides all that, we have a “new past”…. and new “ancestors”…. And we are now “slaves of love and of Jesus”!)

I love this kind of thinking that comes from what you have taught us, as long as I have known you…. it glorifies God, and man is completely left out. We are NOT victims, we are victors (in Christ).

🙂

Gary

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Pastor John,

I was considering some of the things that generations, races, societies, and cultures have gone through before me; injustices and poor treatment in and from this world. I was thinking about how all of us have to get over whatever has befallen us in this world.

And I heard this fearful thought from the Lord:
If you can hold on to your “grudge” with someone, then the Lord can hold on to His, with you.

I believe that is all I need to know – if I thought I had a problem.

Jerry

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Preacher Clark reminded us constantly of Jesus’ commandment for us to pray, “Forgive us as we forgive others.” And he always added this warning: “That is a very dangerous prayer to pray.”

Pastor John

UPC?

Pastor John, are you connected with the United Pentecostal Church? Is UPC unitarian?

Thank you.

Jundy Tandog

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No, Jundy, I am not associated with that or any other Christian sect. Sectarianism is contrary to the Spirit of God. I do not think the UPC is Unitarian, but to make sure, you might want to ask someone who belongs to that sect.

Thank you for writing.

Pastor John

The Commandments

Good morning!

I loved reading the commandments yesterday! When you first started reading, I kept praying, “Jesus, please let me take this in, and if anything in me doesn’t agree with your judgments, please fix my heart and my thoughts.”

Then, the more you read, the more my heart got happy! It was more and more exciting with each commandment you read. Then the spirit fell, and my mouth got completely numb! All I kept saying was mmmmmmm… It felt sweet and warm in my mouth; then, that feeling went to my belly!

It was so good! I felt like Jesus let me eat every word, every judgment! Every time I think of it, I feel it all over!

Wonderful! Absolutely wonderful! So very thankful for our food!

Reading Hosea 1-7

Hi Pastor John,

I came home and started reading what we read this morning in Hosea again. I loved hearing all of the history. When we were reading about the priest not teaching the people and you said most of the people could not read and lived off what the priest told them. That struck me. I thought of all of the years sitting in those pews in the Catholic Church and not learning one thing. I did not even learn what they deemed “children stories”. I knew Jonah was swallowed by a whale and spit back out, and I was then given a coloring sheet to color. I knew nothing of David and his heart for God facing Goliath, Daniel holding fast to God against hungry lions, or Jesus bringing life to Lazarus. I knew nothing of Joseph knowing it was God who sent him into slavery. I just knew nothing about my God. It was a miracle that I met a man (my husband) who made God so real to me, the man who said he cried out to God and his whole life changed. How would I ever have known to hope in God? I knew nothing.

I thought about opening Jerry’s Bible for the first time and trying to read page after page, and not being able to understand anything I read, but Jesus, our Priest, pulling on my heart to read it and seek him. Then after I finished it the first time through, I started again and began to learn little things. Small understandings came, and then Jesus sent me to Jimmy and Sue’s house for the Old Testament class.

Now I am here in NC with you, learning and being fed straight from Jesus. Now two of my children know why Jesus left heaven, came here, and died. What God has done is amazing. I love the stories God writes. I love every one of them that I hear. Nothing stirs me like hearing of God speaking to someone. It is exciting what stories of God we may learn.

I also love that Jesus is our Priest.

Beth heart

Hi John,

The message and the songs last night were wonderful! I especially loved what you said about how to know when someone really loves you. If someone truly loves another person, they will live right so that they can live together with the other person forever with Jesus. It felt so good to have fellowship in what you were saying because I was feeling and thinking on those things earlier in the day, at work yesterday. I don’t remember exactly what prompted me to start thinking about it, but I thought to myself, “You go get right with God (receive the holy ghost), and then live a holy life before God, and then sit back and see who loves you.” Well, what you were saying last night helped to perfect those thoughts I was having. You can see who are the ones who love you by the way they are living. I love it when I have thoughts or feelings about something, and then find out you or someone else in the body is having similar thoughts!

After the meeting, I was recounting to Amy the time when I was seeking the holy Ghost and when I received it. God had put it in my heart to seek Him, and had given me a desire to please Him. I hadn’t really thought about it like this, but after last night, I realized that the primary reason that there are some who are no longer in my life and who want nothing to do with me, and that there are ones now who ARE in my life and really DO love me, is because I put Jesus first in my life. I am so thankful that He gave me the desire to put him first!

Then, this morning, Amy was talking about a song she sang with Amanda from Deuteronomy 32, “Rejoice All Ye Nations”. I pulled it up on my phone and we listened to it. Then my phone automatically went to the next song in my search list, which was a song from Deuteronomy 28. Amy immediately recognized it and sang the first verse, which starts out, “Disobedience brings a curse, But obedience brings a blessing, And if you’ll only put Jesus first…”

I love it when those kinds of things happen – really makes you feel in tune with some of God’s thoughts 🙂

Vince

Satisfied by Jesus

Dear Pastor John,

In reading your material on your website, I’ve come to the conclusion that you take the bible quite literally. Don’t think I can do that, as it leaves me with some serious unanswered questions. Maybe you can answer them though.

If Adam was created and entertained God for a time, which appears to be the case since God saw that it wasn’t good for Adam to be alone, did God add to Adam testicles when He created Eve? I can’t see Adam needing those body parts before Eve was created, unless there were other humans (maybe Cro-magnon or Neandertals) on earth.

And there probably were other humans on the planet before Adam, so Adam really wasn’t the first “man”. Who did Adam and Eve’s sons marry and start families with? Their sisters? And who was Cain afraid would kill him when he was banished? Certainly it should be obvious that there were other humans before Adam and Eve were created.

Also, if God has a body, such as we do (created in His image), then that would mean God has limits to His being, even if His body is spiritual. How could God be everywhere, if He has body parts? That doesn’t make any sense to me, but who can know God? Do you really believe what the bible says about God’s appearance? If we were created in His image (with a head, arms, legs, torso, etc.), then apparently the apes were too! I think the bible meant something else. What makes more sense to me is that, possibly, God is the dimension that encompasses and gives existence to all other dimensions. Our existence is composed of those dimensions that we and our universe are constrained to. In such a scenario, God is everywhere at all times, and yet we are separated from God by those constraints that He dictated. And His son is the dimension by which we can be joined to God. Not sure how Jesus became man, but by God’s infinite power and wisdom. I just cannot see a God-figure sitting on a throne in heaven with another by his side.

Maybe you have some insights into these questions and points of view?

Your humble servant,

Ed

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Hi, Ed.

Thank you for writing. I understand your questions and can certainly see your point of view.

There are many questions that can be raised concerning things that God has not revealed to us. Understanding and living according to what He has revealed pretty much consumes all my time. As Moses said, the hidden things belong to God, but the things that He has revealed belong to us and to our children, so that we may learn to walk in His ways (Dt. 29:29). That is my life’s purpose.

What can satisfy intelligent, inquisitive minds such as yours is an overwhelming personal experience with God, and Jesus made that experience – the baptism of the holy Ghost – possible by his sacrificial death. In John 4:14, he told the woman at the well (whose confidence and openness I would compare with yours) that if someone drinks of his spiritual water, they would be so satisfied that they would never thirst again.

The new birth experience (the holy Ghost baptism) will not answer all your questions, Ed, but it can satisfy your soul so that you know (1) that what God has revealed is true and (2) that He has a good and wise purpose for keeping the rest to Himself. Without Jesus’ soul-satisfying drink of the Spirit, however, we are left with nothing but human logic and our own reasonings, and frankly, I consider that to be a condition worse than death.

If you are looking for God’s perfect answer to the multitude of man’s unanswerable questions, there it is, and I sincerely hope you receive it. If so, you will never thirst again.

Your servant in Christ Jesus,

Pastor John