The Archaic Book

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:1)

Then I saw heaven opened, and there was a white horse. Its rider is called Faithful and True, and He judges and makes war in righteousness. His eyes were like a fiery flame, and many crowns were on His head. He had a name written that no one knows except Himself. He wore a robe stained with blood, and His name is the Word of God. (Revelation 19: 11-13)

The Word of God in the beginning. The Word of God in the end. But what about the Word of God in the middle? Do we really need His Word today…some archaic book to tell us right from wrong? I mean in this age of grace, can’t we all just do what seems right to us…after all, we are being led by the Holy Spirit, right? Well, any place that I see in scripture where the people are doing what seems right in their own eyes, it doesn’t end well.

Now about this archaic book. There are several places all throughout this archaic book that teach us the importance of God and His Word.

For whatever was written in the past was written for our instruction, so that we may have hope through endurance and through the encouragement from the Scriptures. –Romans 15:4

And you know that from childhood you have known the sacred Scriptures, which are able to give you wisdom for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. –2 Timothy 3:15-17

For the Word of God is living and effective and sharper than any double-edged sword, penetrating as far as the separation of soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It is able to judge the ideas and thoughts of the heart. –Hebrews 4:12

Your Word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path. –Psalm 119:105

Therefore, ridding yourselves of all moral filth and evil, humbly receive the implanted word, which is able to save you.—James 1:21

God’s word is the inspired direction book for all of us to live by. It reveals the mind of the Most High, Sovereign God of the universe. It shows us His ways in which we are to walk and pattern our lives. It teaches us right from wrong, holy from profane, ways of God versus ways of man. It is a God-breathed, written record of all things pertaining to God and how to live a Godly life. It illuminates the narrow path to the Almighty God…our way of salvation through Jesus Christ. It is chock full of the wisdom of God that enriches our lives when we live according to His ways. It shows us how to live because, “it is written…”

Do You Know It? Then Live It!

“Not that I have already reached the goal or am already fully mature, but I make every effort to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus. Brothers, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus. Therefore, all who are mature should think this way. And if you think differently about anything, God will reveal this also to you.  In any case, we should live up to whatever truth we have attained.” – Philippians 3:12-16.

These are verses with which I am very familiar…at least 12-14. These are often quoted and like all of Yahweh’s word have a good message. But, as I was reading this morning, verse 16 is what really popped out at me. I’ve read it before…but WOW! “In any case, we should live up to whatever truth we have attained.” In other words, do you know it? Then live it! Once we get the truth of His word inside of us, we need to walk it out.

While none of us has reached the goal, as we are all works in progress, we as believers should be striving to imitate our Master, and allowing Him to transform us more and more into His image. As we come to understand more and more truth from Yahweh’s word, we should be putting it into practice. It should become more and more evident in our lives. As we pursue holiness and walk out our salvation with fear and trembling we need to be doers of the word and not hearers only. He has given us the rule book to guide us in our race. Grasp it…get hold of it…run the race.

“Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets entangled in the concerns of civilian life; he seeks to please the recruiter. Also, if anyone competes as an athlete, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules. The hardworking farmer ought to be the first to get a share of the crops. Consider what I say, for the Lord will give you understanding in everything.” – 2 Timothy 2:3-5

Let’s live it for His glory!

Will the Real Christ Stand Up Please!

“We’ve got a False Jesus being portrayed. As seen on TV, acting cool….you see he’s changed.
A different Jesus from the Bible so…allow me to bring the real Christ on stage.

Not that whack Jesus, the one not based on fact Jesus, too often displayed.

The Christ in Glory, not the one on your chain.
Because he’s the real Jesus Peace that only dwells in the saved.

So allow me to paint the picture of Christ in the Scripture preaching faith and repentance that your too cool Jesus….never seems to mention.

It seems like he’s down with all the things that you do.

But come on, there’s only one Jesus who is true.

So which one will you let reign over you? Who?
The Millionaire Jesus who just wants to make you rich?

Give you some ice, fame, money, to prove that you are blessed?

The Black Panther Jesus who throws up his black fist.

The ‘Kan…Ye…West’ Jesus who walks with no Holiness.

Which one will you choose? I said….Which one will you choose?

So I think it is long overdue to have a re-introduction of Christ.

So there won’t be any confusion as to which one is right,

because one leads to death, and the other IS life!

So allow me to, re-introduce the Christ.

Allow me to, re-introduce the Christ.

I said allow me to re-introduce the Christ!

He’s been distorted by the people and IT JUST AIN’T RIGHT!

Allow me to re-introduce the Christ.

Not someone you can pimp around to propel your cause.

Or a name you can proclaim just to cover your flaws.

Look if this is true then you’re serving a different Boss.

Your Christ is an idol and you’re probably lost.
Because Christ in the scripture? He gave a call to forsake all.

Not to wear a cross but to take up your cross and follow Him.

Because we’re holding a death sentence because of our sin.

And it’s His Mercy that His wrath hasn’t burned times ten.

Just like Sodom and Gomorrah but a curse within.

You see He gives us a chance to learn of Him!
So that He can be glorified in His rightful place.

So if we’re serving this imitation Jesus, dude, it’s like a blatant slap in the face, distorting His grace and disregarding His sacrifice.

For a worldly Christ, like the ‘Purpose Driven Life’ Jesus, who prophesied you’ll be used by him before you’re living like Jesus.
Or that S.A.T. Jesus who helps you with all your quizzes, gets you into college, allows you to pass math and physics.

The homosexual Jesus who doesn’t see you sinning.

The ‘Destiny’s Child’ Jesus who sees your Beyoncé and starts grinning.

Which one will you choose? I said…which one will you choose?
So I think it is long overdue to have a re-introduction of Christ.

So there won’t be any confusion as to which one is right,

because one leads to death, and the other IS life!

So allow me to.. re-introduce the Christ.
Allow me to … re-introduce the Christ.

He’s been distorted by the people and IT JUST AIN’T RIGHT!
So allow me to re-introduce the Christ.

Not someone that we can cover His mouth,

so we can continue our nose in the dirt,

so He doesn’t require us to repent of all sins, to be born again, to never blend in with this world,

and Broadway is the street that walks the Material Girl, she’s got you seduced, she feeds you a phony Jesus that doesn’t want to save you from your sins but wants to…”Kick it with you.”
Like…”Jesus is my Homeboy”..or “Jesus got me employed” or “Jesus is my Decoy”,

But will the real Jesus please stand up?

The ONE who is TRUE!

Because He’s been, knocked down, pushed down, and these idols come in, he wrecked it up, he wrecked it up to the point that if the real Jesus came back right now…

Dude, the Church would probably hang Him upside down!

Pin Him to one of these beams and crucify Him again.

Because he’s not down with your sin!

And it hurts me to see how the Church will defend their lifestyle.

Like, Wow! Don’t we want to know Christ?

The one who willingly gave His life to set us free from our sin you see.
And I must do this by ANY means necessary.

See, I must NEVER hide the LIGHT!

So tonight, I’m going to introduce Jesus Christ.

I said I’m going to introduce Jesus Christ because He’s been distorted by the people and IT JUST AIN’T RIGHT!

So I’m going to introduce Jesus Christ because one day…Dude….

He is coming back and it’s important that you recognize Him because the scripture talks about that.
Many people saying….”I’m Jesus….No, I’m Jesus…No, I’m Jesus”

But which one is fact?

And you got to get into the Bible to see about that,

that He’s coming in the clouds with Power and Glory, and every knee will bow, testify to His authority.

So this Jesus of the scripture better take priority,

not the one that’s accepted everywhere by the majority,

when He Himself said the world would hate Him!

So why all of a sudden does the world want to date Him?

Think about it.
Hopefully you haven’t given in to this ‘Come as you are, stay as you are’ Jesus.

He has this wonderful plan for my Life’ Jesus, ‘You don’t need repentance’ Jesus…or ‘All roads lead to Jesus.’

I hope you haven’t given in to this, but you serve the One who is Holy.

Because it will be something if on Judgment day the Jesus you’ve been serving was simply an angel of light,

which covered a legion of demons masquerading as Christ.

All this time serving a Jesus who’s not been pierced at his feet and the wrists,

who has no sword coming out of his mouth, No rod of Righteousness!

To go on day by day by day, and willingly MISS because we’re serving a created image that leads you to the Abyss.

So let’s get into scripture, so we’re not fooled by this Jesus

who when were sinning he’s still with us,

Won’t get into this Jesus that the world loves,

and he’s cool with your worldly music, worldly TV, you going to the club, your sex, your lies, your vanity, your phony love,

the very thing that caused Christ in the scripture to shed blood.
So let’s make sure we’re serving the right Christ,

not a wolf in sheep’s clothing that’s got you enticed.

The TRUE ONE, want to make you new ONE, The ONLY begotten SON!
So I think it’s long overdue for you to be introduced tonight. Everybody help me welcome…Jesus Christ!”

Whatever…

“Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable—if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise—dwell on these things. Do what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you. – Philippians 4:8-9

I’ve heard this verse many times. I can quote most of it, and I try to live this verse. It is amazing to me how much information our brains take in every day whether we are aware of it or not. The things we hear, the things we see…all get inside our brains consciously or subconsciously. We need to be very careful what we allow into our temples of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19). What are we watching? What are we reading? What are we listening to?

I had an interesting exchange with someone recently. When the whole hubbub with Miley Cyrus twerking was going on, this person just had to see what the excitement was all about and watch the replays. “It’s only a couple of minutes,” she said. What I said to her was this, “Yes, but it’s two minutes of your life you can never get back. Is that how you want to spend your time?” Now, I’ve thought before about how I spend my time…but after I said that, I have really been thinking about it. Time is a gift…time is precious…how do I spend the time that I have been allotted? Granted, it’s not watching someone twerk…but there are definite areas in my life where I can be spending my time more wisely.

Paul exhorts us to focus on things that are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, and commendable; in other words, things that reflect Yahweh and things that please Yahweh. How do we know if the things we are seeing, reading, and listening to are meeting these criteria? What standard should we be using to measure our activities? Obviously we need to start with the Word of Yahweh. We need to anchor ourselves in Him and His Word…know Him and His Word…meditate on His Word…Let His Word guide us in every area of our life.

Why is this so important? It’s just a little TV show here…a little music there? Well…as the saying goes, “Garbage in, garbage out.” What we take into our minds will eventually come out as words and actions. So, how do we represent our Savior? Do the things we see, read, and listen to line up with the Word of Yahweh? Does how we spend our time honor Him? Are we using the gift of time that we have been allotted to live intentionally, bring honor and glory to Yahweh, and not regret that we can’t get that moment in time back?

Remember: Whatever…is true…is honorable…is just…is pure…is holy…is commendable…dwell on these things.

Ten Shekels and a Shirt

I listened to an amazing sermon today. What a timely message!

How Ten Shekels and a Shirt Came to be

By Paris Reidhead

 In over fifty years of Bible teaching and preaching “Ten Shekels and a Shirt” is the only message that I feel constrained to explain how it came to be preached.

During a Bethany Fellowship Summer Conference in the mid sixties I was preparing to speak at the Tuesday morning Bible hour. Upon returning to my room after breakfast to meditate and pray about the message for that morning hour, I felt strangely impressed that I could not deliver the message that had been prepared for the session. Instead, I felt that there was some other message that was needed which I was to bring.

After prayer, the message that came to mind was one which I had begun preparation for the ministry at the church in New York City of which I was pastor at that time. My notes were not with me, but were in a file folder in my study. An empty envelope was on the desk in my room, on the back of which I wrote the scripture texts to be used and one or two ideas that came to mind. With the envelope in my Bible marking Judges, Chapter 17, and my self utterly cast upon the Lord, I went to the auditorium where between four and five hundred people waited to hear from the Lord through me.

I remember praying, “This morning I am utterly cast upon You because I am not really prepared.” In my heart I seemed to hear His response, “Well is that so bad, already” (being from New York City it was given in a idiom I would understand.)

I delivered the message and gave an invitation. Shortly the altar across the front of the auditorium was filled with broken people seeking God.

The summer conference was soon over and I returned to New York City and the ministry there.

About ten years later, one of the Bethany Fellowship staff was in Washington, D.C., where we had moved and from where we still minister. His word was, “Paris, I want to tell you that God has repeatedly used your messages, but the exact message itself was preached only that once.

A week or two later Harry Conn from Rockford, Illinois was in Washington. He invited me to have dinner with him. In the course of the meal he said, “I buy that message of yours ‘Ten Shekels and a Shirt’ by the dozen to give people. God is really using it in lives.” My response was that if you have a copy, I would like to have it sent to me so that I can find out what it is I have said. In a few days the cassette arrived.

Since I don’t have a tape player in my office, I put the tape into the Sony dictating machine on my desk and listened through the little playback on the hand-held microphone. The element of distance in terms of time, and the distorted sound through the miniature speaker, let me listen to the message with no real awareness of who was speaking. From time to time I felt like exclaiming, “That’s right! I wish I had said that!”

Then it dawned on me that it was my voice, but God was speaking through me. I realized that on a Tuesday morning during a summer conference, God had been able to get His message across because of my utter and complete helplessness. Here it is, just as the Lord gave it.

Paris Reidhead                                                                    ©2013 Bible Teaching Ministries Inc.

How to BE a Sheep

English: Sheep

I recently felt led to write a post, “How to Spot a Goat”, in response to what, in my opinion, was a poorly written, scripturally-unsound article entitled “How to Spot a Legalist”. However, I think the most important idea that should come from that post is how to BE a sheep.

Throughout His ministry, Yeshua makes the comparison between wheat and weeds (Matthew 13:24-30), sheep and goats (Matthew 25:31-46), and ready and unready virgins (Matthew 25:1-13). I’ve always thought these were interesting teachings, but it wasn’t until recently that I realized that He is comparing believers. This realization combined with Matthew 7:21-23 that says, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of My Father in heaven. On that day many will say to Me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in Your name, drive out demons in Your name, and do many miracles in Your name?’ Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you! Depart from Me, you lawbreakers!’”, has given me great pause for thought, reflection, prayer, and studying the scriptures. Our focus should be on how to be wheat, how to be sheep, how to be ready, because not everyone that says they believe in Yeshua and has done things in His name is going to go to Heaven. Yeshua said it Himself.

So here is a list for “How to BE a Sheep”. This is not an all-inclusive list, but some important guidelines on our journey with Yahweh.

 1. We must enter THE door. John 10:7-10 says, “So Jesus said again, “I assure you: I am the door of the sheep. All who came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep didn’t listen to them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved and will come in and go out and find pasture. A thief comes only to steal and to kill and to destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance. We must be saved by grace, through faith, for good works (Ephesians 2:8-10).

2. We must love Yahweh with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our mind, with all our strength. Absolutely nothing should get in the way of our love of Him. And, our love for Him must be His way. (Deuteronomy 6:4-6; Matthew 22:34-38; 1 John 2:3)

3. We must love each other. We must be willing to put others ahead of ourselves and love them with the heart of Christ. (Mark 12:31; John 13:34-35; Romans 13:8-10; 1 John 3:11-18; 1 John 4:7)

4. We must be totally souled out and committed to Yahweh. We must be willing to take up our cross and count the cost. We must be prepared to follow Him no matter what may come our way. (Matthew 10:32-39; Mark 8:34-38; Romans 12:1-2; Galatians 2:20)

5. We must hear and obey His voice. It is more than mere mental assent. We must have a saving faith that leads to obedience to His Word. We must understand that if we are living by the Holy Spirit, He will not lead us to do anything that is contrary to God’s Word. (Matthew 7:24-25; John 8:31-32; John 10:27; Romans 2:13; 1 John 2:3-6; 2 John 1:6)

6. We must bear good fruit. We are known by our fruit. What kind of fruit are we producing? (John 15:1-17; Luke 6:43-45; Galatians 5:16-26)

7. We must be servants. We must have a servant’s heart. If our Messiah was willing to wash His disciples’ feet, how much more should we be willing to serve Him and each other? (Psalm 119:125; Mark 10:42-45; John 12:26; 1 Corinthians 4:1-2; Galatians 5:13; Philippians 2:5-7)

8. We must forgive. We must be willing to forgive others if we want Yahweh to forgive us. (Proverbs 17:9; Matthew 6:14-15; Mark 11:25; Ephesians 4:31-32; Colossians 3:12-14)

9. We must be humble. We must stay away from self-righteousness and a proud and haughty attitude. We must be humble before Yahweh and realize that every breath we take is because it is from Him. (2 Chronicles 7:14; Micah 6:8; Matthew 23:12; Luke 18:9-14; Philippians 2:3-11; James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:6)

10. We must be holy. Holiness is not optional; we must pursue holiness or we will not see Yahweh. (Isaiah 35:8; Leviticus 20:26; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Hebrews 12:14; 1 Thessalonians 4:4; 2 Timothy 2:21; 1 John 3:6-10; 1 Peter 1:14-16)

 Are you a sheep? Are you wheat? Are you ready?