Cross found on all donkeys' backs?
There is legend that the crosses on these donkeys appeared after Jesus rode one into Jerusalem (read Matthew 21:1-11). There is no evidence that this is true. The dark stripe in the form of a cross was a trait in these donkeys long before Jesus lived. However, the fact that Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem is very important. It fulfilled a prophecy that was spoken 500 years before Jesus lived, and showed He was the Messiah (read Matthew 21:5 and Zechariah 9:9).
Dear Prayer Partners
1} President Obama and his advisors
2} the men & women serving in our armed forces and their families
3} Bobby- a missionary in Haiti who was flown back to the states with a broken back
4} Holly- recently gave birth to a son
5} Hailey- has Hodgkin’s lymphoma and is unable to work due to it
6} Margo- recovering from a stroke
7} Dan- has Leukemia & an inoperable brain tumor, the tumors in his stomach and lung have been removed successfully
8} Christine- recently gave birth by an emergency C-section and her new son is in critical condition
9} Living Waters A/G looking for a youth pastor with a vision to reach the youth
10} Dennis- having problems breathing
11} The Holm Family- death of a loved one from cancer
12} The DeRien Family- death of a loved one
13} The Fraley family- death of a loved one
14} Eugene- is battling cancer
15} Schimmica- husband is having an affair
16} Kevin- has some serious dental problems and is recovering from emergency oral surgery
17} Faith- is hospitalized after a heart attack and partial amputation of right foot, has a serious infection in heart, lungs and kidneys and is back on dialysis
18} Chantella- is expecting her 1st baby in the spring
19} Julianne- having difficulty with her pregnancy
20} Marc- family problems
21} Tom- problems with weight control
22} Achan- has HIV, an infection in her lungs and gall bladder is shutting down
23} Rick- has bulging disc in his back
24} Noah- a toddler having complications from heart surgery, has a very high fever
25} Frank- fighting depression
26} Gloria- hospitalized after passing out at work
27} Chaplain Sam- recovering from eye surgery
28} Chaplain Jay- preparing for a missionary trip to Uganda next year
29} For all the unspoken and personal requests that people have
30} For us at Highway Mission Outreach that we will continue have the doors opened to share the gospel and the needed finances to carry out the ministry of the mission and as we plant The Cross-Roads Chapel
31} For Michael Frankland, Gill Ainsworth, Mark Ainsworth, Tracy Ainsworth, Tony Wood, Eileen Walsh, and Elaine - break down strongholds in their lives
Opening Our Hearts to God
Psa. 19:14 - May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable before You, O Jehovah, my rock and my Redeemer.
Acts 13:22-23 - And when He had deposed him, He raised up David for them as king, to whom also He testified and said, I have found David, the son of Jesse, a man according to My heart, who will do all My will. (23) From this man's seed, God, according to promise, brought to Israel a Savior, Jesus.
~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~
Both of the above passages are related to David. Psalm 19:14
is a prayer of David, while Acts 13:22-23 is a description of
David. In David's prayer, there are the “words of my mouth”
and the “meditation of my heart,” or the thoughts of the
heart. He prayed that he would not only be kept in his words
outwardly, but also be acceptable to God in his thoughts
inwardly. The words of the mouth are an expression of the
thoughts of the heart. The heart is the root problem.
Whether or not one outwardly says the right words is not the basic problem. Whether or not one has an outward attitude in his speaking that is right is also not the basic problem. The
thoughts of the heart are the basic problem. The thoughts of
the heart constitute the root problem and cannot be overlooked. David did not merely pray, “God, may the words of my mouth be acceptable before You.” He added to the prayer, “May the meditation of my heart be acceptable before You.”
David's prayer was for the thoughts of his heart to be
acceptable before God. This is why Paul could later testify
that David was a man according to the Lord's heart. A person
who is according to God's heart allows God to touch his heart. If you will not allow God to touch your heart, it will be hard for you to be one who is according to His heart.
Many Christians ask, “Why is it wrong for me to do this? Why
is it wrong for me to say this? Why is it wrong for me to
express myself this way?” Brothers and sisters, whether or
not you are doing the right thing, saying the right thing, or
expressing yourself the right way is not the real problem.
Rather, is your heart right when you are doing such a thing,
saying such a word, or expressing yourself in such a way?
What is the condition of your heart? What is the condition of
the root? Even if you are right in every outward thing, it is
still possible for your heart to be wrong. God is touching the condition of your heart and asking about it. He allows many winds and waves to beat upon His children for this very reason.
He uses these things to touch your heart and to expose the condition of your heart.
By C.H. Spurgeon
"For thy Maker is thine husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called" (Isaiah 54:5).
JESUS, the Redeemer, is altogether ours and ours for ever. All the offices of Christ are held on our behalf. He is king for us, priest for us, and prophet for us. Whenever we read a new title of the Redeemer, let us appropriate Him as ours under that name as much as under any other. The shepherd's staff, the father's rod, the captain's sword, the priest's mitre, the prince's sceptre, the prophet's mantle, all are ours.
Jesus hath no dignity which He will not employ for our exaltation, and no prerogative which He will not exercise for our defence. His fulness of Godhead is our unfailing, inexhaustible treasure-house. His manhood also, which he took upon him for us, is ours in all its perfection. To us our gracious Lord communicates the spotless virtue of a stainless character; to us he gives the meritorious efficacy of a devoted life; on us he bestows the reward procured by obedient submission and incessant service. He makes the unsullied garment of his life our covering beauty; the glittering virtues of his character our ornaments and jewels; and the superhuman meekness of his death our boast and glory. He bequeaths us his manger, from which to learn how God came down to man; and his Cross to teach us how man may go up to God. All His thoughts, emotions, actions, utterances, miracles, and intercessions, were for us.
He trod the road of sorrow on our behalf, and hath made over to us as his heavenly legacy the full results of all the labours of his life. He is now as much ours as heretofore; and he blushes not to acknowledge himself "our Lord Jesus Christ," though he is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords. Christ everywhere and every way is our Christ, for ever and ever most richly to enjoy. O my soul, by the power of the Holy Spirit, call him this morning, "thy Redeemer."
Thank you for your support and continued prayers for these new believers and this ministry!
In His vineyard,
We Shall Worship the Lord!
By John Piper
Do you delight more and more in the majesty and glory of God? Does your heart incline to worship God more consistently and intelligently and earnestly and intensely today than it did five years ago?
Is your love for your brothers and sisters in Christ abounding more and more so that you use your gifts more and more effectively to strengthen their faith and stir them up to love and good works?
And do you feel a greater burden for the lost? Are your prayers for unbelieving relatives and friends more consistent and earnest? Are your efforts to give a reason for the hope that is in you more bold, less ashamed? Are you becoming a world Christian with a zeal for the final mission thrust of the church to reach the hidden peoples?
If you can answer yes, we are making progress as a church. If not, we are failing in those areas. But at least we have goal and a definite Biblical theology behind it.
But it is not new. Listen to the way another pastor and teacher describes the meaning of membership in the church:
Membership, therefore, involves a personal obligation to promote the objects of the body as expressed in the covenant.
These objects are three:
1. The social, united worship of God...
2. The perpetuation and diffusion of the gospel...
3. The sanctification of its own members...
The church, thus comprehensive in its scope, looks upward to God, outward upon the needs of a lost world, and inward to the processes of sanctification in the souls of its own members; the neglect of any one of these grand objects of its organization imperils its whole design.
This is our philosophy of ministry. The quote is from Hezekiah Harvey, who was born in England in 1821 (The Church, 1879, reprint 1982, pp.35-36.). There is nothing modern or trendy about the priorities of our church. They have been around for two thousand years. They are tried and true, and it shouldn't bother us at all that they are not new.
Friday, March 5, 2010
Compromise of any sort begins with an assault on the truth. Relativism is but one weapon that pounds away, day after day, on the notion of absolutes. As America's new religion has been dubbed by some as "Moralistic Therapeutic Deism" one understands that for most people, God is a nice idea but He's not someone they want to be bothered with on a regular basis. Of course, when there is no God, or when we can't be bothered with God, there is no truth; when there is no truth, there is no authority - but oneself. Perhaps the single most destructive source of compromise in our culture is the marginalization and/or rejection of the authority of Scripture - not by unbelievers but by professing Christians.
Yet, all is not lost. The church still has her calling, message, and Lord who is in fact building that church. Three affirmations come to mind here.
First, in a culture of compromise, it is the authority of Scripture that is rejected by evil men who are deceived. We must never forget that one's commitment to the authority of Scripture for his life is a spiritual issue. The true believer is one who is increasingly committed to God's will as given through the Scriptures while the unbeliever is one who increasingly rejects the truth and its authority. Paul says to Timothy, "But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived (2 Tim. 3:13)." The issue is not intellectual or rational. People without Christ are deceived. They cannot understand the things of God apart from the work of the Spirit of God (1 Cor. 2:14). No one can be forced, enticed, or even manipulated into embracing the Bible's authority. The issue is spiritual and God alone can cause submission. Of course, when we believers reject Scriptural authority from time to time, and we do, we are mimicking those who are deceived. We must be confronted with this staggering reality often.
Second, in a culture of compromise, it is the authority of Scripture that is our only rule for faith and practice. In other words, what we are to believe and what we are to do in any circumstance is revealed to us in God's Word. With reference to what we believe, Paul declares that it is the Scriptures that are "are able to make [us] wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus (2 Tim. 3:15)." It is from the Scriptures we get our doctrine (2 Tim. 3:16). This principle relates to what we believe about ultimate reality, politics, ethics, relationships, and so forth. In terms of what we do, Paul asserts that it is the Scriptures that are "profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work (2 Tim. 3:16-17)." This principle relates to what we do in terms of our attitudes, actions, vocation, the way we treat others, our worship, or even the way we carry out the work of the church in ministry or evangelism for example. We must search the Scriptures daily to get our doctrine. We must be reproved, corrected, and instructed constantly by the Scriptures. Only then will the Scriptures be our practical authority. Otherwise, all we will be doing is paying lip service; and that is hypocrisy.
Third, in a culture of compromise, because it is the authority of Scripture that is rejected by evil men who are deceived; while at the same time, it is the authority of Scripture that is our only rule for faith and practice; it is the authority of Scripture that is underneath the Lord's solemn charge to us. That charge is straightforward: "Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching (2 Tim. 4:2)." We are to preach the Word whether it is popular or not; whether it is received or not; whether people like it or not. It is authoritative. And, it is the Word that God uses to change the hearts and minds of guilty sinners. We must not ourselves reject the authority of Scripture when it comes to our method of evangelism. Sinners cannot and will not be saved by fleshly means. Further, our culture cannot and will not be changed by fleshly means. We are in a spiritual battle and the weapons of are warfare are not carnal (2 Cor. 10:4). God Himself commands: "'And he who has my word, let him speak my word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat?' says the LORD. ‘Is not my word like a fire? says the LORD, ‘And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?'" This command affirms both that which we are supposed to do (preach the Word) and why we are to do so (it is the Word that breaks the rock in pieces). The Lord Himself says we must preach the Word.
Every now and then someone asks me what the vision of our church is. I usually say, "What do you mean," when I know exactly what they mean. They want to know how we are going to go about building the church. Because the Scripture is my authority, I simply say, "Preach the Word; no compromise." If the church doesn't get hold of this reality, we will continue to lose our savor and be trampled upon by men in this culture (Matt. 5:13). On the other hand, if we do get hold of it, the fortresses of this culture will crumble before our God.