Everyone Dies

“And as it is appointed for men to die once, and after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, without sin, unto salvation.”  Hebrews 9:27-28   Death is a topic that most people try to ignore.  For when a friend or a family member passes away, the reminder of our own mortality is stark and apparent, everyone dies.    The older a person gets, the more people that they will know who have died will increase.  While sadness often prevails, sometimes for quite some time, many take comfort in believing that the person for whom their soul yearns for is now in Heaven.  The truth of the matter is that it is appointed for men to die once, but there is a second death.   “And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heavens fled away. And there was found no place for them.  And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God. And books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, out of the things which were written in the books.  And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one, according to their works.  And Death and Hades were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second...

A Divided Country, A Divided World

“And it happened, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said to him, Is that you, O troubler of Israel?  And he answered, I have not troubled Israel, but you and your father’s house have, in that you have forsaken the commandments of Jehovah and have gone after the Baals.  Now therefore, send and gather all Israel to me on Mount Carmel, the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal, and the four hundred prophets of the groves, who eat at Jezebel’s table.  So Ahab sent for all the children of Israel, and gathered the prophets together on Mount Carmel.  And Elijah came to all the people, and said, How long will you be limping between two divided opinions? If Jehovah is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow after him. But the people answered him not a word.  Then Elijah said to the people, I alone am left a prophet of Jehovah; but Baal’s prophets are four hundred and fifty men.  Therefore let them give us two bulls; and let them choose one bull for themselves, cut it in pieces, and lay it on the wood, but put no fire under it; and I will prepare the other bull, and lay it on the wood, but put no fire under it.  Then you call on the name of your gods, and I will call upon the name of Jehovah; and the god who answers by fire, He is God. So all the people answered and said, The word is good.  And Elijah said to the prophets of Baal, Choose one bull for yourselves and prepare it first, for you...

Hurry Up!

“For He says: In an acceptable time I have heard you, and in a day of salvation I have helped you. Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”  2nd Corinthians 6:2   “And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.  The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.  Let us walk decently, as in the day, not in carousings and drunkenness, not in cohabitation and licentiousness, not in strife and envy.  But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.”  Romans 13:11-14   The other day I had to travel across the state to take a required training class.  On my way there was a church with a sign that included ‘hurry up’.  Indeed!  How much longer do we have as a society, before Jesus appears?  How much longer do you have?   “But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who are asleep, that you sorrow not as others who have no hope.  For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.  For this we say to you by the Word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. ...

Live for God

…“choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the temporary pleasures of sin”… Hebrews 11:25   “Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has been released from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh in the lusts of men, but in the will of God.  For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in licentiousness, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries.  In this regard, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same overflow of dissipation, blaspheming.  They will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.”  1st Peter 4:1-5   “You shall not follow the majority in doing evil;”  Exodus 23:2a   Our society has a disease of false prophets, celebrities and a culture that promotes living for today.  This is nothing new, but since the 1950’s this has been a message that was preached across the world and was happily accepted by the majority.  I’ve heard it before and a good friend, who is now asleep in the Lord, used to make mention of these sort of things, as being older than I, he was of the era that grew up in the 60’s.  Yet most recently I was introduced once again to these themes, at work.   After moving back to northern Michigan, I accepted a job at a restaurant, as...

No Second Chance

“And as it is appointed for men to die once, and after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, without sin, unto salvation.”  Hebrews 9:27-28   “And the devil, who led them astray, was cast into the Lake of Fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.  And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heavens fled away. And there was found no place for them.  And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God. And books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, out of the things which were written in the books.  And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one, according to their works.  And Death and Hades were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death.  And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the Lake of Fire.”  Revelation 20:11-15   A lot has happened since I last wrote.  My family and I traveled across the country to clean up the belongings of a loved family member who had passed away.  In the process, albeit with many struggles, we relocated back to Michigan.  While...

Where is Wisdom?

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”  Romans 12:2   “For the leaders of this people lead them astray; and those who are led by them are swallowed up.”  Isaiah 9:16   Michigan, like other states, have recently passed a law that allows for recreational marijuana use.  In that law it allows cities and counties to decide whether or not they want to allow dispensaries in their respective areas.  Unfortunately this is likely the future.  Just how many more states will pass such laws before Congress ultimately deems recreational marijuana use the law of the land from sea to shining sea?   What should be, and still is, a hot topic in states like Michigan that have passed such laws, is an ongoing dispute between city and county councils on whether or not their respective areas are going to be directly involved in the racket or not.  In rural places in Michigan, such discussions have led to some small cities who have decided to allow dispensaries, both medical and recreational, to start and operate in their areas.  Why?   Well it is the future, don’t you know?!  One city council claimed that for years their city has been treading water and stagnant, but with this, they are going to breath life into their city and allow for growth, tax income and other economic incentives.  So while other neighboring communities state, rightfully so, that they want nothing to do with now legalized drug use, this...

Recycle the Heart

“For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth. And the former shall not be remembered, nor come to mind.”  Isaiah 65:17   “And God blessed them, and God said to them, Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the flying creatures of the heavens, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”  Genesis 1:28   “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”  2nd Corinthians 5:17   The other day I was on the internet and I saw something that had been posted about disposable one-time use plastic, in regards to the wastefulness of it.  I’m not in disagreement about when there is a better way to do something, that is both efficient and economically intelligent to do, than do it.  Certainly we live in a world that has a bunch of waste and our landfills are filling up.   There is a merit on keeping things cleaned up and being sensible.  After all, who wants to have to get their drinking water from polluted sources, have to live next to industrial waste or smell a gigantic landfill?  God said that we can subdue the earth, but does that mean that when we clear cut for lumber that we can’t plants some new trees for future generations?    Just how much pollution does war make?  How much waste is caused because of technological advancements that have been held back due to big oil?  As our society progresses on,...

Hold Fast

“Now to you I say, and to the rest in Thyatira, as many as do not have this doctrine, who have not known the depths of Satan, as they say, I will put on you no other burden.  But hold fast what you have till I come.”  Revelation 2:24-25   “Hold fast the form of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.”  2nd Timothy 1:13   “But test all things; hold fast what is good.”  1st Thessalonians 5:21   “Let us hold fast the confession of the hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.”  Hebrews 10:23   Things are rough out there and they are getting rougher.  The Church must hold fast, those who are truly Christians, those who have repented towards God and by faith believed into Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior (Acts 20:21), must hold fast.  These are very serious times and there is no sign of them getting less serious, but on the contrary things may get numerous times more serious in times to come.  The apostasy is in full bloom, as was foretold in the Bible.    “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, being devoted to corrupting spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be partaken with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.”  1st Timothy 4:1-3   “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come:...

Going Tribal

“Therefore Jehovah said, Whereas this people draw near with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but have removed their hearts far from Me, and their fear toward Me is taught by the commandment of men; therefore, behold, I will again do among this people something extraordinary and wonderful. For the wisdom of their wise ones shall perish, and the understanding of their intelligent ones shall be hidden.”  Isaiah 29:13-14   “You shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor put any etched marks on you: I am Jehovah.”  Leviticus 19:28   I’ve always been fascinated with first hand exploration accounts, particularly in tropical regions.  With that said, I have been diligently reading up on a missionary and explorer, David Livingstone.  If I happen to find an author to whom to read their exploration account, I always find either an unabridged or original work.  With the birth of my newborn daughter, I found myself in fast food lines to get some dinner.   Having been in restaurant management off and on for years, I have become accustomed to the general workforce that makes up the interior of these establishments.  It’s been a few years since I have been managing a restaurant, certainly things have degraded even a bit more.  So sitting in line waiting for my burger, cheese curds and medium chocolate milkshake, I couldn’t help but notice the odd similarities of first hand accounts of tribal behavior and our culture nowadays.  We are going tribal.   As I’m in line waiting the backdoor flies open, a young man emerging to take out the...