Gregory

Gregory’s Column: Christianity Banned?

Gregory Watson : July 14, 2015 9:14 pm : Gregory, Guest Author

christianity banned

 

 ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’- Jeremiah 33:3

The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.~Albert Camus

 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.~Romans 8:37-39 

Think. It is not illegal yet.-Anonymous

Christianity worldwide and in the United States is becoming a severely persecuted religion, more than we have ever seen. I know that it sounds a bit obscene, but it is more than true. Ever since President Obama has been elected we have seen that we have no wiggle room for our faith. He also wants us to give up our freedom.

Ever since Congress has added “Under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance in 1954 we have believed to think that the phrase meant that God would always be with us and and that those two words were permanent. But radical leftism, a prominent political force in this country, is hostile to Christianity. “Under God” is a taboo phrase in public schools and public settings. Will this hostility grow to the point that we Christians will be titled as the enemy, or have we already?

Bill Maher, a man who is an avid atheist, insults the Christian body. He says, ” Christians like to feel like martyrs.” Do you believe that? I don’t.  The world is slowly becoming so violent when they here the word ‘Christian’ because the world has pinned it up as the religion of hate. But let us take it to another website. There is another site that is called God is imaginary and that we should stop believing. He also put down “ten questions to answer that would make you question your faith” which I am going to answer for you.

1.) Why won’t God heal amputees?

In James 1 :12 it says, “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.” Also in 2 Corinthians 6:4-8 it states,”But as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: by great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger; by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit, genuine love; by truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; through honor and dishonor, through slander and praise. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true;” If you were allowed to look at you life in the form of a line, would you like it to be straight and easy or tumultuous and jagged? What would life be like if you didn’t have those obstacles to overcome? What accomplishments would you fulfill if everything were easy to do? God wants you to experience life and its hardships as He had said in Genesis 3:17-19: To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’ “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life.It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field.By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.” For our mistake and sin of eating from the Tree of Life we have opened our eyes to the true world and we’ll will always face hardships. That is why God oftentimes doesn’t heal amputees.

2.)Why are there so many starving people in our world?

Well, this one can be directed back to Genesis 3:17-19, we must now and forever, until the end of time be left on our own. There are many miracles in which people have gained health or had diseases that disappeared immediately. Now we will live forever in pain and trials for the rest of our lives.

3.)Why does God demand the death of so many innocent people in the Bible? (He verses examples such as: – Exodus 35:2 – God demands that we kill everyone who works on the Sabbath day.- Deuteronomy 21:18-21 – God demands that we kill disobedient teenagers.- Leviticus 20:13 – God demands the death of homosexuals.- Deuteronomy 22:13-21 – God demands that we kill girls who are not virgins when they marry.)

What is the key element when you look at these verses? They are all in the Old Testament and in the old covenant, and have been replaced with the New Testament and its covenant of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. In Ephesians 2:8-9 it says” For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God not by works, so that no one can boast.” You can never achieve perfection and that doing so is an impossibility for Man. These verses that say to kill were set in a time before Christ’s ultimate sacrifice, when sin had to be paid for somehow. God does not condone murder — this was the solution for mankind’s sin.

Question #4: Why does the Bible contain so much anti-scientific nonsense? He adds details such as:

– God did not create the world in 6 days 6,000 years ago like the Bible says.

– There was never a worldwide flood that covered Mt. Everest like the Bible says.

– Jonah did not live inside a fish’s stomach for three days like the Bible says.

– God did not create Adam from a handful of dust like the Bible says.

            Well, to answer your question is that almost everything that has been on the Earth has been found through the Bible. Even most of the old documents have been found are through the Bible. The Dead Sea Scrolls, the Tel Dan Inscription, the Caiaphas Ossuary, the Crucified Man, the Ketef Hinnom Amulets, the House of God Ostracon, and the Pilate Inscription have valid scientific proof. Pontius Pilate, one of the best known people in history, had put Jesus Christ on trial (which proves Jesus did exist). So how could we have had a trial for someone who never existed?                                               

                                                       6,000 Years Ago

Well, actually how do you know the world was not made in 6 days? Were you here 6,000 years ago to see? Science has carbon dating and can date things back to millions of years ago, but this method has been proven to be flawed.

                                                        Science Vs. Theology

First, science’s description. The universe is small and without form or void. Protons and neutrons collide together and form a giant “BANG” that echoes into life on our planet and creates other galaxies and planets.

Second, theology’s description.  In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth and the earth was without form or shape, with darkness over the abyss and a mighty wind sweeping over the waters Then God said: Let there be light, and there was light. (Genesis 1:1-3) Both say the same thing but one excludes the major role in life. God.

                                                 There Was Never A Flood?

In this site we get a more clearer view of the potential flood that covered the Earth :  http://www.earthage.org/EarthOldorYoung/scientific_evidence_for_a_worldwide_flood.htm

If you clicked the link you probably just read a lot of evidence on a worldwide flood that includes geographical and scientific proof. If you didn’t I will just name one of the reasons that is proof of a flood . In sites around the world such as Mt. Saint Helens (USA), Palouse Canyon (USA), and Greenmount Beach (Ireland) it shows fossils of trees and animals that have been bent by severe force(such as water) and the writer said this : Fossils don’t form on lake bottoms today, nor are they found forming on the bottom of the sea. Instead, they normally only form when a plant or animal is buried soon after it dies. Therefore, the fossils themselves are evidence of a catastrophe such as a flood or volcanic eruption that took place in the past. Rapid Petrification of Wood.Severe water had bent the trees and they became petrified. And this flood came from USA all the way to Ireland which proves of a Great Flood around the globe. Even in some documentaries there are digs that see the layers of earth that prove of a great flood and that the world was covered in water.

                                                Jonah and the Whale:

 

“This is the summary of the Encyclopedia’s report on Jonah. The report theorizes that the “great fish” was most likely a sperm whale. While the common Greenland whale could scarcely swallow an orange, the sperm whale has a mouth that averages 20 feet long, 15 feet high, and 9 feet wide. It is well known that the sperm whale feeds largely on squid which, of course, often much larger than humans.

“As to whether a man could survive in a whale’s stomach, the Britannica article maintains that one certainly could, though with great discomfort. The report maintains that there would be sufficient air to breathe–air that is necessary for the whale to float. The temperature inside the whale would be great, but bearable at about 104 – 108 degrees F. There would be unpleasant contact with the whale’s gastric juices, but these juices could not digest living matter.

“You may even be surprised to hear that Jonah is not even the only human to ever survive such an ordeal. During a voyage of a whaling ship in February of 1891, a sperm whale was spotted and pursued in the vicinity of the Falkland Islands. In an attempt to harpoon the whale, one sailor drowned while a second one disappeared. Eventually the whale was killed and drawn to the side of the ship where it was dissected.

“The next day, the stomach was hoisted on deck and opened–with the missing sailor lying inside. The sailor was unconscious, but alive. He was eventually revived and, after a time, resumed his duties on board the whaling vessel(Wilson, Sign of the Prophet Jonah, 630 – 642). ”

These are all accounts of proof you can live inside of a whale, there are also accounts where dogs and cats and even sharks have been found alive inside of whales. And all of them where in top shape afterwards. Even science says that you can live inside of a whale depending on its size. And in Jonah 1:17 they describe the fish as huge. “Now the LORD provided a huge fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.”

 

Question #5: Why is God such a huge proponent of slavery in the Bible? Look up these Bible verses – Exodus 21:20-21 – God apparently says that it is okay to own slaves, and it is also “okay to beat them.” – Colossians 3:22-24 – Slaves need to obey their masters.- Ephesians 6:5 – Slaves need to obey their masters just as they would obey Christ.- 1 Peter 2:18 – Slaves need to obey their masters, even if their masters are harsh .

Slaves were used so much back in the times of when Egypt flourished that it was considered natural to have slaves, but it was not recognized by the Mosaic Law ( also known as the laws of Moses). Slaves were willing servants they sold themselves into slavery to pay off debt when they couldn’t afford their crimes or pay for their families. So they put themselves into slavery until they paid them off and, not only that, when the slave was finished he was paid many gifts by his master. (“If your brother, a Hebrew man or a Hebrew woman, is sold to you, he shall serve you six years, and in the seventh year you shall let him go free from you. And when you let him go free from you, you shall not let him go empty-handed. You shall furnish him liberally out of your flock, out of your threshing floor, and out of your winepress. As the Lord your God has blessed you, you shall give to him. You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God redeemed you; therefore I command you this today. But if he says to you, ‘I will not go out from you,’ because he loves you and your household, since he is well-off with you, … Deuteronomy 15:12-18 ) Sometimes slaves were put into slavery by force but that would be because they were either sold from their family or by charges that were held against him/her. God commanded that slaves were treated like humans, and sometimes they never wanted to leave their master’s house. In other words, slavery was (in many respects) a different institution than it is now and in its other modern renditions.

Question #6: Why do bad things happen to good people?

We must all fight our own demons and fight for the right even when the evil is attacking us with ferocity. So why doesn’t God help us? I will supply the same answer I did on #1 . He wants us to have faith in Him on not only on the miracles that He can give you but also on the hardships that test your faith. Why would you want a life that everything goes good for you? Jesus was traded to take a murderer’s place (Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified. Matthew 27:26) . Life was never made to be easy after we ate the Apple of Understanding. People forget that we must live with the consequences of something we did, have done, and are doing. So we will always need forgiveness.

Question #7: Why didn’t any of Jesus’ miracles in the Bible leave behind any evidence?

Here is an answer from a man who witnessed Jesus’ death and called him a sorcerer. He hated Jesus and wanted people to see that he couldn’t perform miracles, but just magic:

“The first comes from the Babylonian Talmud 43a.    Babylonian Talmud  (late first or second century AD)  Babylonian Sanhedrin43a-b  “On the eve of the Passover they hanged Yeshu and the herald went before him for forty days saying [Yeshu] is going forth to be stoned in that he hate practiced sorcery and beguiled and led astray Israel   Here Jesus is accused of sorcery, in obvious parallel with the charge leveled in Matthew 12:22-23.  The writer of the Talmud does not agree that Jesus worked bona fide miracles, but he reports that he did things which, to the enemy of Jesus could only be written off as sorcery.    Also, in Babylonian Sanhedrin107b  it is claimed that Jesus practiced magic. In  tHul2:22-23  it is reported that healings were done in the name of Jesus.  So we have indirect confirmation of the crucifixion of Jesus and of his working of public miracles-only charging that the miracles were worked by Satan, not God. 

There is evidence all over the world. Whether you choose to accept it is up to you.

Question #8: How do we explain the fact that Jesus has never appeared to you?

Because Jesus is only returning in the end of times.

“Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done.” -Revelation 22:12

“At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory. And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other. (Matthew 24:30-31)

 Question #9 –Why would Jesus want you to eat his body and drink his blood? It sounds totally grotesque, doesn’t it?

This is the easiest one so far…

Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe. All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.- John 6:35-37

“He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”- John 6:55

Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.- 1 Corinthians 12:27

Jesus’ blood cleanses our sins and transgressions so that we will never be bound by the constrictive temptations of sins, and that everyday we may drink the wine of life through Jesus Christ. We don’t actually EAT His flesh (we’re not cannibals) it is a term of speech to represent that WE are Christ’s body. And that when we drink deep in the Bible and with knowledge, forgiveness, love, compassion, humility, and the light of Christ our Saviour in us then we will never grow hungry or thirsty; for our hunger is for His word; for His path for us. We are forever the body of Christ and therefore are always drinking His wine (Blood) and eating His bread (Flesh) so that we never are hungry.But as it says in John 6:35-37 ‘…you have seen me and still you do not believe me’. We are Christ’s body and every time we approach or preach to you, you are hearing and seeing the word of Christ (Well, just a piece of Him, anyways.)But we refute, refuse , and discriminate the moment a Christian talks about God. “You have seen me and still you do not believe me.” 

Last but not least Question #10 :Why do Christians get divorced at the same rate as non-Christians?

Well, it is quite easy to answer: we are as human as any other non-Christians. We make the same mistakes as any humans and we have to make up for it in time. But Jesus Christ has allowed us to be forgiven of our transgressions and has  removed them from our slate.  Just because we are Christians does not make us the role models of perfection but the models of forgiven sins. And since divorce is a sin by God, Jesus forgives it. Should it be avoided? Is it wrong? Yes, and yes. Acts 3:19 says : “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.”

All of the major atheistic questions have been answered. Did you like the answers?

 

 

 

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Jesus Came For Sinners.

Gregory Watson : February 7, 2015 3:19 pm : Columns, Gregory

Jesus came for sinners       

Forgiveness For All.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins, and to cleanse from all unrighteousness.- 1 John 1:9

As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.-Psalms 103:12

Many people who first hear about Jesus the Christ, they do not feel like they are worth saving — that, somehow or some way, their sins are unforgivable.

Jesus doesn’t have a measure on sin. He views them all as equal. Look at it this way: If you made a bar graph of each sin increasing in order by the way you view them and put them side by side, you would see the way sins reflect to you and by your judgement. But God is in Heaven looking over us, and He sees the top of the bar graphs equally.

Every sin is equal because just one tips the scale of sin. No one is perfect and people who think they have never sinned cannot go into to heaven.

In Luke 18:9-14 it states,”To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everybody else, Jesus told this parable: Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood up and prayed about himself: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men-robbers, evil doers, adulterers- or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’  “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

This is amazing! We all need to understand that every man, every woman, and every child has sinned. We were born into it. It is unavoidable. To say that we are not sinners is yet another count on the Sin Tally. Jesus passed to all of us his own pure blood to cleanse us all. As long as you humble yourself you are forgiven before the eyes of the Lord.          

Pontius’ Decision.

I take my heart in my hand, O my God , O my God. My broken heart in my hand: Thou Hast seen, judge thou. -Christina Rossetti

Many people know Pilate as the man who ordered the death of Jesus Christ. Many do not know the full story on what had happened before the choice that led him to be killed.

Pontius Pilate had a lot of power; as the mayor, he held a great deal of responsibility in his land. But when the elders came with a man who was alleged to have conspired to destroy their town (although they had no evidence against him), he became worried. So in a stroke of genius, he decided that this was not his rule but that it was Herod’s. Jesus was not from Pontius’ area, so he sent Jesus to Herod and the next day was returned in an elegant, purple robe. (Luke 23:11)

Pilate thought that since Jesus’ crime wasn’t evident, he could just punish Him and then later release him.

But the crowd uproared and still demanded Jesus’ death. Pontius was befuddled; the crowd grew large and demanded the death of Jesus despite the absence of proof of crime. He had been thinking and fasting to find a solution and then he talked to Jesus. “Are you king of the Jews?” And Jesus replied,”Yes, it is as you say.” (Luke 23:3)

What could Pontius do? The elders were yelling and screaming for Jesus’ death and there was nothing he could think of to do. Later, his Pontius’ wife sent him an urgent message reading : “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.” Despite all the signs that Pontius was given, he had ignored them all.

Since Jesus’ accusation occurred during the Passover, Pontius had the choice to release Him. So he brought out the true criminal Barabbas (there was definitely proof of his crime) and said, “Which one do you want me to release to you: Barabbas or Jesus who is called Christ?” And clearly and without hesitation the crowd shouted, “Barabbas!” Pontius then asked, ” What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called Christ?” And the crowd roared, again without hesitation, “Crucify Him.” (Matthew 27: 15-24)

Now Pontius was scared. His power meant nothing so he tried reaching out to Jesus to try and talk and find a way to save him and asked, “Where do you come from?” But Jesus said nothing. “Don’t you realize I have the power to free you or crucify you?”  And Jesus answered, ” You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin.” (John 19:8-11)

Pontius tried to save Jesus but the crowd grew more raucous and out of control. So he washed his hands in front of the crowd and screamed, “I am innocent of this man’s blood. It is your responsibility.” And they took Jesus and crucified him. (Matthew 27:24)

The point of this story is that Pontius, Judas, Barabbas, the Crowd, and the World were responsible for the death of Jesus. No man’s hand could be clean as they watched Jesus’ death. He was innocent of all crime and he took the crimes of us all. He forgave us all.

Barabbas was a man who committed murder and a host of other sins. He was a personification of our sin nature, yet the crowd released him and Jesus forgave him. Judas was the disciple who followed Jesus and then betrayed him, and Jesus forgave him. Pontius was the man who allowed Jesus to be taken, beaten, and then later crucified, and he too was forgiven. If Jesus can forgive these people, the people that killed him, don’t you think he can forgive you too?

 

Jesus Didn’t Come For The Righteous.

All the wisdom of the world is childlish foolishness in comparison with the acknoledgement of Jesus Christ. -Martin Luther

Where is the foolish person who would think it in his power to commit more than God could forgive? -Francis De Sales 

Everyone has been given a chance to be forgiven and not a single person ought to live unaware of Jesus’ sacrifice. If we deprive a man the word of God because we didn’t think that he deserved it, doesn’t that make us just as bad as that man? (Matthew 6:37)

In Luke 5:27-32 it states, “After this, Jesus went out and saw a tax collector by the of name of Levi sitting at his tax booth. ‘Follow me,’ Jesus said to him, and Levi got up, left everything and followed him. Then Levi held a great banquet for Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples,”Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and ‘sinners’?” Jesus answered them,”It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”” (Luke 5:27-31)

Let me repeat that last sentence for you: I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. You cannot say you are not sinful and expect to get to heaven. Jesus did not come for perfect people; he came for sinners. He came for us.

Do not worry that you are not worthy of God’s forgiveness: we are all short of perfection. You cannot say that Jesus doesn’t want to forgive you, because he already has. All you have to do is accept it.

In Luke 7:36-50 the verse says, “Now one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, so he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. When a woman who had lived a sinful life in that town learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster jar of perfume, and as she stood behind him at his feet weeping , she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and then put perfume on them. When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, ‘If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is- that she is a sinner.’ Jesus answered him,’ Simon, I have something to tell you.’ ‘Tell me, teacher,’ he said. ‘Two men owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii and the other fifty. Neither had the money to pay him back, so he cancelled the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?’ Simon replied,’I suppose the one who had the bigger debt cancelled.’ ‘You have judged correctly,’ Jesus answered. Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon,’Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her own tears and wiped them with her hair. You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered the room, has not stopped kissing my feet.  You did not pour oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven- for she loved much. But he who has been forgiven little loves little.’ Than Jesus said to her,’ Your sins are forgiven.’ The other guests began to say among themselves, ‘Who is this who even forgives sins?’ Jesus said to the woman, ‘ Your faith has saved you; go in peace.'”

The woman was perhaps the most sinful woman in that village and Jesus Christ forgave her. He forgave her and looked past the countless sins she committed. So if he can forgive her, why not you?

Christ Is Here.

We love him, because he first loved us.- 1 John 4:19

For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God.- John 16:27

Do not try hiding yourself from God because you will only be fooling yourself. God is omniscient, here, there, everywhere, and at all times. He is all-knowing and all-powerful, and the only reason you exist is because He willed it. God does not make mistakes, and you are definitely not one of them; so do not hinder yourself from Him. Because He is already waiting on you, all you have to do is accept Him.

God is with you always, and He has never left you.

So let me pray for you: Let Jesus bring peace when there is worry in your life. When you hunger, let you be well-fed. When you are thirsty, let God quench it. If there are tears and stress, let God wipe the tears away and throw the stress into oblivion. I pray that when you are tired, you find yourself well rested. If you are sick, let Jesus heal you of that ailment. And if you are always trying to find someone to talk to, I pray that God is there listening to you. I pray that you forever follow God and you never find yourself off the path God has chosen for you. And if you do find yourself off the path, I pray that you find your way back. In Jesus’ everlasting name, Amen.

The End. (Thanks)

Now thank we all our God, With heart and hands and voices. Who wondrous things hath done in whom his world rejoices.-Catherine Winkworth

Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom , and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen. -Revelation 7:12

Hello, it’s Greg again! I just want to thank everyone who reads my blog and that it is only because of you guys that this Outpost is amazing. Thank you for reading my posts and please feel free to comment, correct, like, or share me. Thanks very much and God bless.

 

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The ‘Mess’ in the Message

Gregory Watson : November 12, 2014 7:02 pm : Columns, Gregory

the mess in messageTough Being Christian: 

Matthew 10:22  ” You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.”

John 15:18-19  “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me firstIf you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.”

Most non-Christians I meet me, “You have it easier than anyone else. You get money and pray. That’s it.”

It is tougher than most people can understand. When you are a follower of Christ you need to follow His footsteps and show His love, and that’s not as simple as it seems. In Luke 6:35 it reads, “Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked. ”

Love your enemies?  Wow,I think some of you guys just flinched at the sound of that.

We all need to pray for our enemies and to show them kindness without seeking reward. The enemies that persecute, execute, tease, and beat us must be forgiven? Yes. We must show the same infinite love that God gave to us and to show the same mercy as well.

And the Bible says that, “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Not a single person can be reprimanded of the forgiveness of Jesus Christ because He didn’t die for just one, but for all.

That is why it is difficult to be Christian.

We must love and care for even the people with the worst hearts, those who spit in our faces, those who treat us like they treated Jesus on the cross. Christians have to do this all without seeking recompense. Without seeking a reward for all of your deeds, you must give all of what you have away.

If that is the case, how do we protect ourselves from evil and temptation?

What defenses do we have? Well, we have the Armor of God.

In Ephesians 6:13-17:  “Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

With the belt of truth you speak of a message that is never a lie because it is indefeasibly correct.

With the breastplate of righteousness, you will be guarded from the evils the serpent has to throw at you. And with the Gospel of Peace fitted underneath your feet, wherever you travel the good news of Christ will follow too. With the Shield of Faith you will never be beat by sin, but you will overcome it. And with the Helmet of Salvation and the Sword of the Spirit, you will be a foe against seemingly unstoppable mischief. Because our God is for us, so who can stop us?

 

 The Rejected Cornerstone.

When Christ came to Earth He was rejected by many. Even the Bible said that the “Son of Man has no place to lay his head” (Matthew 8:20). Most Jews believed that Jesus of Nazareth was a hedonistic man with many wives; they didn’t even get the chance to see Him as He was.

We will always find people who will reject us as Christians because of our faith, and many will persecute us or kill us. In some countries it is encouraged. Our faith is by far the most powerful because it has the power to move mountains and save souls. When we find ourselves in trouble, we have a weapon beyond all weapons: Prayer. Prayer is a weapon, an answer for all ills, because all prayers go straight to God. And God never sleeps.

Before Jesus came to this earth, there came a prophecy that told of the key cornerstone and that without it, the building would fall. In Psalms 118:22 it says, “The stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.” This world will not function without Him yet we rejected the Creator. Without Him we are nothing yet want to be without Him. Ironic, isn’t it? The rejected stone will be the keystone, and just like Him, so will we be rejected.

Kindness Wins The Heart.

  1 Peter 3:15  “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.”

Teaching people and dictating about God are two different ways of going about spreading the gospel. If you are screaming and hollering about ‘You are going to Hell if you don’t repent!’ all you are doing is yelling at wandering strangers.

Expounding on the law, telling strangers about the grace of Christ, and reflecting a Christ-like attitude in daily life are better: helping someone out inevitably leads to a question: ‘Why are you helping me?’ You tell them that you work for the Lord. Which of these methods is more Biblical?

When preaching you always need to have love for you will never succeed in what you are doing if otherwise.

In 1 Corinthians 13:1 it says, “If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.” Each of us is an instrument of God, but if we use are talents without love, no one will hear our message. We all must do everything we do with love and kindness in our hearts so people know we care about them, and if we don’t have love, all is in vain.

 The ‘Mess’ In The Message

Matthew 11:28-30   “Come to me, all you who are struggling hard and carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Put on my yoke, and learn from me. I’m gentle and humble. And you will find rest for yourselves. My yoke is easy to bear, and my burden is light.”

James 1:12 “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.”

Each of us have a story about how we found God. Some are long and sad, others are short and funny. But all of our stories point out a time when we needed God in our lives.

God will always test our faith, whether it be a good test or a bad one. He will always make sure that we have something to overcome in our lives, but will make sure to carry most of the burden.

We will always have a mess to deal with, no matter if it’s school, death, family, money, or anything else that brings trouble and hardship. When you juggle these items you will soon be struggling with them–and they will all fall on you.

And when they fall on you, that’s when you realize you should have let God take the burden in the first place. It doesn’t matter about how many struggles you have, it is about what you do to make the moments in between them that count. It doesn’t matter the struggles that you’ve experienced but what you did to overcome them.

All of us had had moments where we have messed up in our lives, moments when we think we have failed God in so many ways that we just can’t live with it anymore.

Just remember what 1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

This verse says that no matter what you do that God will always forgive you if you confess to Him. Isn’t that amazing? No matter how many times we mess up, God is always there to wipe your path clean so that you may continue to walk in Christ’ perfect footsteps. And with the imperfect mess in our lives we are able to show a Message to people that God can forgive even the worst of people, and that with every test that God gives to us there is a Testimony on how we overcame it and how God will still prevail through it all.

Keep this in mind, when you think of Christians around the world: all of us have Tests (testimonies) and Messes (Messages).

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Tell Tale Messiah

Gregory Watson : July 18, 2014 6:29 pm : Columns, Gregory

telltalemessiahAnointed One

Many people have questions on what makes Jesus the Messiah.

And yet it isn’t very hard to see the telltale signs that Jesus is King. To explore some more in-depth conclusions, I will try to explain the monumental messianic prophecies that prove who the true Messiah is.

The Messiah had to have been in existence at the beginning of time; he must have seen the creation of the Earth. In  John 1:1, it says “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” The Word is Jesus Christ: He was here in the beginning and will be forever, past the frontiers of time and space.

I have been doing research on the subject, and it’s clear that Jesus has been present in stories throughout the Bible. He has been hiding in plain sight throughout the old testament.

In Genesis 22:13, “Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a lamb caught by its horns. He went over and took the lamb and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son.” 

“The Lamb Was Sacrificed as an offering to God,” it says; the only person mentioned as a lamb in the Bible is Jesus. He is the spotless lamb who sacrificed himself for our sins. And just like the lamb sacrificed for Abraham’s son, Jesus was sacrificed for us. There is much similar symbolic significance throughout the Old Testament

Jesus also is found in Genesis often. In Genesis 21:17-18” And God heard the voice of the boy, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, ‘What troubles you, Hagar? Fear not, for God has heard the voice of the boy where he is.  Up! Lift up the boy, and hold him fast with your hand, for I will make him into a great nation.'”  Jesus is the Angel of God; He has been here throughout time, comforting us all. Jesus is omnipresent. He is here, there, and everywhere all at the same time.

Messianic Prophecies

A Messianic prophecy is a prediction of who the Christ will be and what and how He will present himself.

The scriptures made it clear that the Messiah was to be born of a Virgin, and in Isaiah 7:14 it says “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.”

In Matthew 1:22-23, “All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call.”  Jesus was this Son, the only man in the world who was born of a virgin — Jesus of Nazareth.

The prophets proclaimed that the Messiah would be sent to heal the brokenhearted, to heal all wounds, to raise the dead, feed the hungry and lead people towards God. In these verses are proof that Jesus has done them all!

In Isaiah 61:1-2 ” The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners,  to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn.” 

This passage from the Bible said that the Lord is here to heal all broken hearts and to catch every tear that falls from every cheek. In Mark 8:25,  “Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly.” 

This verse shows that Jesus not only came to heal you spiritually, but physically as well. In Matthew 5:40-43, “But they laughed at him. After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was.  He took her by the hand) and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished. He gave strict orders not to let anyone know about this,and told them to give her something to eat.”  

Jesus brought back to life a dead girl by just His voice. He has shown that He can raise the dead by the power of His voice, fulfillment of prophecies in its own right.

In Matthew 14:18-21,“‘Bring them here to me,’ he said. And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over.  The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.”  This verse says that Jesus in fact can feed the hungry no matter the number, and by all these passages they also say that Jesus can lead. Jesus is the true Messiah.

Other prophecies say that the Messiah was to be falsely accused (Psalms 35:11, Mark 14:57-58), that He was to be crucified rather than a criminal (Isaiah 53:7 , Mark 15:4-5) , and that He was to be mocked many times (Psalms 22:7-8,Luke 23:35) . It has all come to pass.

 

Tell Tale Messiah

 

There are over a thousand messianic prophecies that tell who the Messiah really is, and the only person who fits those descriptions is Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ fits those prophecies because He is the direct description of them. He shows the telltale signs throughout the Bible, in the Old and New Testament, and in the lives and testimonies of people throughout history.

He cannot be faked; He fit all descriptions of the Messiah, and for you (or anyone other than Christ) to fit just one of those descriptions is impossible. Jesus is here to present to you a gift of forgiveness and everlasting life in His perfect footsteps, and one aspect of the proof that this is true is that the Biblical prophecies have been fulfilled.

In John 20:31“But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” 

Jesus is Messiah because of all the miracles, blessings, prayers, words, and His sacrifice so that He can see us to heaven even when we have miserably, utterly failed Him.

The Devil’s Play

This is something I wrote to describe why Jesus died for us.

The Devil is staring at the world, smiling in a mischievous way; He knows what is happening to it. 

Devil: If they continue this, then the world will soon be mine to control. It will soon come to where floods and whales won’t stop them from continuing their paths.

Jesus walks next to him and sits calmly on a bench, watching the Church perform deeds in His Father’s name and for His Father’s glory. He smiles.

Devil: Do you see it?

Jesus: What?

Devil: The bet I made is coming true before your eyes, this world only cares about what they can do to fight you. They are all going to turn against you soon. If you continue this, they will overthrow you.

Jesus: Not all people.

Devil: But most. Cain, for instance.

Jesus: Abel.

Devil: Goliath.

Jesus: David.

The devil looks at the world again; this time he is whispering something to them. Jesus knows what Satan is doing — he is trying to throw doubt in their minds,and with a flick of a finger Jesus writes a letter to them. He writes a history — His story — of many beautiful beginnings, astounding miracles, and acts of faith. He closes the book and put a name in bold letters “The Holy Bible” He copies it and sends it to the Earth. With a smile He knows soon that people will read this story.

Devil: What do you see in them?

Jesus: What you don’t. Let me take them from you — because I see beautiful people made by my Father. How much do you want?

Devil: Your life.

Jesus: Done.

 The love letter Jesus sent to earth converted many people, and the Devil saw that there was more power in Jesus then he realized. Jesus,in order to stop evil from pushing the barriers of good, sacrificed himself to cleanse people of the bad things they’ve done. When He drew His last breath, people cried. For they knew that the man who died was really the Messiah.

Jesus died for you, even knowing the bad things you done. He is the Messiah. He saw the potential in you, a sinner. He saw that you could be perfect in Christ. So if you ever want to know what makes Him the Messiah…

Just read the love story He wrote for you.

God Bless and Godspeed.

   

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Big Bang Theory Vs. The Big Bam Fact.

Gregory Watson : July 10, 2014 6:26 pm : Columns, Gregory

big bang

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”-Reinhold Niebuhr

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.” -Genesis 1:1-3 

 

The Big Bang’s Confusion

The Big Bang Theory is thought by many astronomers to be the beginnings of the Earth. The astronomical explanation of this theory is that the universe originated sometime between 10 billion and 20 billion years ago, from the cataclysmic explosion of a small volume of matter — at extremely high density and temperature.

This theory claims that out of nothing came something.

This theory claims that all we know today comes from a small, highly compressed mass of hydrogen atoms exploding, which in turn allegedly created us.

No matter the situation, it’s human nature to be skeptical. It’s also in our nature to make things work, to force puzzle pieces so we can explain it our way. But in the end, one either believes in eternal matter or an eternal God.

The theory of evolution alleges that we have evolved from apes — and yet the only solid evidence for this theory is the missing link between us and them.

Seriously? You have all this evidence towards ‘evolution’ and you have fossils that are millions of years old but you can’t find the hundreds of links necessary to support your claim?

That makes no sense. That is a forced puzzle piece.And as for the Big Bang Theory, where is the evidence? There is none.

There is not a single piece of evidence supporting this well-known theory that we all came from an exploding star. An exploding star’s dust created the world? Something doesn’t seem right.

Scientists want to believe they are omniscient by avoiding the answer that will always be lying in front of them: God is real.

We are not from stardust, nor are we from an exploding hydrogen atom.

We are from something that scientists see right in front of them. The blank pieces to the Theories of Evolution and the Big Bang are not a mystery, but a dead end.

The blank pieces to the theories of evolution and the big bang are not a mystery, but a dead end. 

There is no evolution. There is no Big Bang theory.

A man named Robert Sawyer is an atheist scientist, and although I looked everywhere this is likely the closest an evolutionist has ever gotten to the truth; He said, “There is no indisputable proof for the big bang,’ said Hollus. ‘And there is none for evolution. And yet you accept those. Why hold the question of whether there is a creator to a higher standard?'”  

Although he only believes in “science,” there were things that he said that made sense.

Is there a higher power? The answer: yes.

God is the only omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent being. Ever.He is the One who makes everything from nothing. But the question is,”How?”.

Not From Stardust.

God looked upon the world and saw that it was filled with nothing. So He decided to create the world. With a powerful voice He said,”Let There Be…” and so it was.

We are not descendants of apes but of man and man alone, as God ordained it to be. God created us all with the power of His voice, using the dust from the ground.

We are not made of stardust, but of the voice of God.

I call this reality the Big Bam Fact.

With the Big Bam Fact, we have all questions answered. What are we made from? How was the world created? Do we evolve from apes? How is this true?

 

What Are We Made From?

When God created us, He made us special. We are the only creatures in this world that are in the image of God.

He made us so that when He looked down upon us He saw His children. But the main question is,”What are we made from?” We were created from the dust of the earth, not of stars.

In Psalms 103:14  it says “For he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.”  We were made by God,He is so powerful that He built us with His voice. There are more verses that say this as well.

“By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.” -Genesis 3:19

“All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.” -Ecclesiastes 3:20

 

 How Was The World Created?

The world was created by the voice of God; He saw the whole galaxy with out any shape and spoke to bring it to life.

In Genesis 1:1-3, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.” 

That is the Big Bam Fact. God said it and …BAM… it was.

It was not hydrogen exploding. It was only the voice of God. It did not take a moment of a blast to create us all, nor billions of years. Creation took six days. On the seventh, God saw the work, declared it good, and rested.

You don’t have to force a puzzle piece and try to justify faulty science. Creation is not a forced piece of the puzzle; it’s a perfect fit.

 

Did we evolve from apes?

We were the same then as we are now. We were never apes nor will we ever be apes.

We are human. The theory Of evolution is man’s way of distilling the truth to force a piece into a puzzle that they don’t fit in unless God’s there too.

We will never be a kind that God never wanted us to be, and that is pure fact.

 

How is this true? 

The difference between the Big Bang and the Big Bam is that one secludes God (and was, in fact) created to justify the claim that we can live without Him) and the other is the right puzzle piece.

And that is the only difference.

It’s funny how close, yet so far away, scientists are  from the answer — they aren’t missing a link, they’re missing the point. Not to mention that they’re not just missing a link, they’re missing almost everything that should support their “facts.”

It is that we were created from dust, not stardust.

We were created from God’s voice, not by an exploding hydrogen atom.

We haven’t changed into another species (and never will) because God made us who He wants us to be.

The only missing puzzle piece is that they are hiding from themselves the truth that they aren’t their own gods. That is what hurts most scientists, the fact that there is a being who is higher than they are.

So how can we ever accept this to be true?

Faith. Faith is what allows us to believe either the Big Bang or the Big Bam theories as fact. Eternal matter, or an eternal God? Man’s solution, or God’s solution?

But no matter what man tries to explain into existence, it’s merely forcing puzzle pieces. The theory of evolution in itself has changed: the first pioneers of the cause and the most modern proponents of its lies would disagree with each other, but both parties decry the others as wrong. Science is changing. God never changes — His evidence is that He inspired men over thousands of years apart (not minutes, or hours, but years) to write one continual history. That God created us all.

God spoke to them to tell them how and why we are.

Faith overpowers the Big Bang. Doubt is what created the theory in the first place.

Most scientists who believe in this want to be their own gods; they want to know that they are the most powerful people in the world, yet when they see the Bible they shudder.

The Big Bam Fact is what lets us all know how we all were really made — without the science fiction.

And if doubt clouds your mind I want you to remember the quotes you saw in the beginning. The top quote was called the Serenity Prayer. It says, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”  

When you hear about the Big Bang Theory, remember that we have God; and with faith, we have the wisdom to discern the truth.

Godspeed and God Bless.

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The Barabbas Principle

Gregory Watson : July 5, 2014 2:38 pm : Columns, Gregory

 the barabbas principle

Very early in the morning, the chief priests, with the elders, the teachers of the law, and the whole Sanhedrin, made their plans: they bound Jesus, led him away, and handed him over to Pilate.

“Are you the king of the Jews?” asked Pilate. “You have said so,” Jesus replied.

The chief priests accused him of many things. Again Pilate asked him, “Aren’t you going to answer? See how many things they are accusing you of.”

But Jesus still made no reply, and Pilate was amazed. Now it was the custom at the festival to release a prisoner whom the people requested. A man called Barabbas was in prison with the insurrectionists who had committed murder in the uprising. The crowd came up and asked Pilate to do for them what he usually did.

“Do you want me to release to you the king of the Jews?” asked Pilate, knowing it was out of self-interest that the chief priests had handed Jesus over to him. But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have Pilate release Barabbas instead.”What shall I do, then, with the one you call the king of the Jews?” Pilate asked them.”Crucify him!” they shouted. — Mark 15:1-13

The above scene is one of the most known of all stories in the Bible. It shows that even in the past there was sin everywhere, and that people rooted for it like they do today.

Jesus’ life was ended the moment the crowd voted “Barabbas.”

But even the tears shed in this story, and the inevitable death of Jesus Christ, were a good moments for God. That one perfect death had saved the lives of billions of imperfect ones.

It solidifies that Jesus came here for all of our sins, not specific ones. When Jesus was chosen against Barabbas He knew that the prisoner was a sinner above all men. When He saw the man he saw a cynical, evil mind, filled with a principle that we shall call “The Barabbas Principle“.

It is the principle that no matter what sin you can do, Jesus died for you. Our sins may be different, but we are all imperfect. We’re no better than any other sinner, and despite that, Jesus chose to die for us.

If he couldn’t die for the world’s evilest man, He couldn’t die for us. We are all Barabbas!

When Jesus saw Barabbas He saw a sinner, not a the world’s worst man (something that many present that day likely thought). When He saw all of us He saw a sinner. You can never be perfect: just being born made you a sinner, and that is not your fault.

You are the handiwork of God Himself, and He crafted you perfectly so you could be His in Christ, perfectly imperfect.

In James 2:10 it says, “For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.”

When you commit one sin, you tip the scale of perfection. Trying to be perfect will never earn you to heaven. It’s like trying to catch the wind: once you reach out, it has already slipped through your grasp. That is why Jesus died. So He could bring us all home to the Kingdom of Heaven and bridge the gap between ourselves and God.

The Love We Should Show.

Now that you know of the Barabbas Principle, you should see some of the reasons why He died for even the worst of men. And nothing says it more than Jesus on the Cross.

He died so all of our sins could be washed in His blood, to be purified and cleansed, to be able to follow Him into Heaven.

In 1 Corinthians 4:4-7 it explains that ‘ Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

Remind you of anybody?

This verse is telling the characteristics of love, but what I am seeing is a person who waited ages for us to come (patience), a person who traveled the world to help others (kindness), a person who was always content and never jealous of another, (does not envy), and is not angered even in the most trying circumstances (not angered).

Seem like anyone you know? It is the perfect description of Jesus Christ.

He is the definition of love because He is love. When you think of love, always think of Jesus, because nobody can lead a better example than God in the flesh.

He died so that we could have the chance of going to heaven; He lost His life trying to bring us to heaven. That is the kind of love we should show: we should bring love to every corner of the world. If Jesus died for the vilest of criminals, we should show mercy and love more than we do.

In order to show the Word you must be able to show His love.

We should show Jesus Christ like the love He showed for us …

He didn’t see just the sin in us, and neither should we. He saw that one step missing to heaven, He saw that one imperfection that set us off. Sin. Sin brought us more away than we think. Think of it this way:

You buy some nice white shoes, with a white suit or dress, and white gloves. Moments later a car speeds past and splatters your shoes with mud. Now you have imperfect shoes. Walking anywhere dirties your shoes, and any activity will eventually dirty your suit.

So what is left for you to do? You clean them.

God sent Jesus to die so that we could all shine without sin separating us from God and hindering our soul.

When Jesus saw the Barabbas, He saw what great things we could do when we work together in His name. He looked at us with eyes full of love — he died for us. He knew that we are sinners, yet he knew that through Christ, we could do amazingly good things.

When you see a person, do as Jesus did. Do not pass judgement on them, but sit there and show love — show the Barabbas Principle in action. It doesn’t matter to God what we have done, what matters is if we repent and change that counts. When you are speaking or talking or being a friend to another person, think of the kind, never-jealous, patient, truthful, and death-defying love that Jesus gave us.

Trials And Riches

In the paragraphs above, you learned about the Barabbas Principle and the love that we should show. You saw that we need to share love to anybody, no matter what their sin, because Jesus saw all of ours and yet still died for us.

He never denied anyone His love. Neither should we. But just like He did, we should also pay attention to the trials that we all face, to see the love God sends us all in his justice.

We should all review Genesis Chapters 6-7. God flooded the world because of its evil, because He saw that it could not be changed.

Noah was the only person who still followed God in His everyday life. God asked him to build an ark, and Noah spent months doing as He requested — in spite of the laughter, mockery, and doubt he faced.

And with that you probably know the rest of the story. Noah was picked on, yelled at, called crazy, and taunted for living the life God had called him to lead — to be the ‘crazy man building the ark’.

He was never tempted and he never doubted the things God had said would come to pass.

Trials like these strengthen us. In 1 Peter 5:10 it says, ‘And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.’

Just like in James 1:12 it says, “Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.”

You will have trials, but in that instant to you will be strengthened and rewarded.

The times that you think, “God can’t work on me,” is the time He really is working in you and through you. In the book of Job, Job was tested by boils, deaths in the family, and loss of his herds, yet he stood and worshiped God throughout all trials he endured.

In the end, Job was rewarded because God saw that Job was a God-loving man.

Never let the trials of this world bring you down, because they are all rigged to lose.

In the book of Acts, when Paul was traveling to Philipi, he was beaten and flogged so badly he was covered in blood. Yet he didn’t let anybody stop him, even when he was shackled and thrown in prison.

Instead of being pessimistic (because he had no idea what was going to happen in that day) he and his friend who traveled with him literally sang his praise from a prison cell.

They were released from their chains when an earthquake opened the prison doors and made the walls collapse, but still they didn’t leave: instead they witnessed to the prison guards and inmates. If you keep faith and keep strong you will see that they aren’t hindrances but trampolines of faith that will bounce you back to the road you were on and higher.

Most people think that riches can make you better than another person and can fulfill your life. But I tell you this: when you die, will it matter about the giant mansion you have? No.

When you dies will it matter how much money you are worth? No.

In Ecclesiastes 4:4 it says, “Then I observed that most people are motivated to success because they envy their neighbors. But this, too, is meaningless–like chasing the wind.”

It doesn’t matter about chasing what your neighbors have, because it is like wasting your life trying to catch the wind; it won’t matter when you leave earth. What matters is the things you do for others in Christ’ name, how you love, how you show mercy, how you follow Christ — how you recognize the implications of the Barabbas Principle (that Jesus died for everyone, even the “worst”) and act accordingly.

The riches you have in this world are all material things: they will meet their end whether you are here to see it or not. They won’t matter in the end. And no, I’m not saying that you should burn your clothes and house: what I am saying is that you can’t try being your neighbor, you need to be you — in Christ.

Items do not determine the contents of the soul. Your heart does. You can have everything in this world,  yet you can still have nothing for eternity.

Trials and riches are two things that differ from each other like night and day.

Trials bring you closer to God, yet they are the most painful and most rewarding of all things. They let you see what strength God can give you in all moments.

The Barabbas Principle In Our Everyday Lives

When you look into the story of Jesus and Barabbas, always remember that no man on this earth is greater than another. We are all imperfect. That’s why Jesus, who is perfect, is here to wash our sins away.

Always remember that when Jesus saw Barabbas He never saw the amount of sins He did and the extent of them, He only saw that they were there. Jesus doesn’t see the side view of the sins we commit, but only the top view. He only sees them equally.

Do not stop a person from hearing the word because you think that their sin is bad enough that they don’t deserve forgiveness.

All sin is of the same size; all will have the same punishment and condemnation.

Always share love, because when you share love, you share Jesus. Allowing yourself to realize that all of us — whether rich or poor, in good standing of society or not, church member or not, criminal or not– are sinners and that Jesus did die for all of us, even those whom we recognize as the “worst” among us.

The Barabbas Principle demonstrates that prejudices are foolishness, that we should always be forgiving. Because God died for not just one person, but for all of us.

Godspeed and God Bless, as always!

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Being Divided By Denominations

Gregory Watson : June 12, 2014 7:57 pm : Columns, Gregory

To Seek Man-Made Labels, or Christ?

Out of all the fights a Christian can fight for, why do we push each other away by denominations?

The battles we push against each other are heartbreaking: we have Baptist against Catholics, Catholics against Lutherans, Lutherans against Anglicans, and so many more.

We have put a label on our religion and it has distilled the truth from the Word. Our heart’s desire is clouded by what we think is in the Bible. In Jeremiah 17:9 it brings on the point,”The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is?”.

We have turned the Truth into a religion. We don’t need a denomination to define who we believe in; it doesn’t matter what tag we put on our religion, but what does matter is that we all put our faith in God, not the beliefs that we try to push in the Bible.

Do you know that from one Bible there are 1,800 denominations, and climbing?

Those are a lot of disagreements.

We have disagreed with each other 1,800 times,and we never even noticed the big picture we were missing. When we divide our Christianity, we divide ourselves from God and our brothers and sisters in Christ. The truth of the matter is, that we push ourselves away from our family in Christ when we make a new denomination as a result of a petty disagreement. Standing for principle is important, but there are other aspects to consider.

How can we evangelize people when we are splitting into factions from each other? How can we help each other when we are seeing whose religion is the best?

Sharpening each other with the Bible to make us wiser is good, but why do we have to make a new denomination to see who is right?

That is why we are divided by denominations.

In Proverbs 27:17 it says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” We are supposed to sharpen each other so we can be wiser in the word.

I, for one, do not believe in religion. I believe in the Truth of the Word, Jesus, and our Heavenly Father. I am of no denomination and I never will.

I am a Christian first, which means follower of Christ. And that is what I am—I am a follower in Christ. I do not need a denomination because they only cloud what I feel.

We can sharpen each other to keep us together in Christ, but we do not need to be separated denominations.We can’t spend our time trying to split when we should be spending time helping each other build a stronger foundation in Christ.

I know of two churches in Florida that were only thirteen inches from each other. They were once one church with one pastor, but when a minor disagreement came up, they decided to split from each other.

There were also two old men there. Each went to a different church,they would talk before they went in and would talk even more when they went out. One time a friend of mine asked them “What happened here?”. They all just laughed and said,”We have no idea, it’s been so long we have lost all of what happened.”

Do you see? They don’t know what happened. With just one disagreement, it made one church two.

It is crazy the ways we can join together and then in just a snap of a finger…we can separate just as quickly. How can just one difference, one argument, one disagreement set a whole church to split into two?

We can easily be united in Christ’s name. We can easily stand together stronger than any mountain, and louder than any chorus sung!

But it saddens me to see a Truth turn into a faction. God’s love is infinite, but God’s love does not split–it’s the same for every denomination, for every believer. Brothers andd sisters, believe it or not, God is in you! His love shines in the core of your heart and He wants you to share more!

Don’t let the ideas of a man, the shackles of denominations, be a hindrance from the truth of the Bible. It is time that we should stand tall, not hidden in the shadows of our own manly creations.

Non-Christian people can’t believes sometimes, because we won’t let them.

That seems a bit judgmental and harsh, but it is true.

When you wake up for Sunday church, what is your first instinct?

“Man, I gotta get my nice clothes on, my nice shoes, get my hair done, and I am out the door.”

When you wake up, you spend about an hour just working up to look your best, to show off your ‘Sunday Best’.

So I must ask…you spent an hour getting to look your greatest; now before you walked out of the house for Church, how many hours did you prepare yourself for the teaching to come? How long did you spend reading your Bible before going to Church?

Most of you would say “None”. Looking your best is fine; but what are your priorities?

A homeless person who walks into a Church seeking answers for eternity will see people staring at him, all in shining clothes that you believe are like pearls and diamonds!

They are bewildered by the ragged clothes you are wearing–some may even snicker at you–and then you are left with a decision: leave or stay?

If you were really put into that decision, what would you do? Most people are treated like that, and we don’t even know it!

God’s priorities are not for us to look rich. He wants us to know that we are rich when we choose Him!

God does not care if you wear the dirtiest of clothes, haven’t bathed, or haven’t combed your hair. Because God sees the true You. He can see your heart like a cell under a microscope and can see your true heart’s desire.

In the song, If We Are the Body, by Casting Crowns, there are lyrics I would love to share with you. “The weight of their judgmental glances tells him that his chance are better out on the road.”

When I described that scene of the homeless person, how did you feel?

If you were him, would you feel judged? God will not judge you by manly standards, including what you can or cannot afford to wear.

He will judge the intent of your heart!

Most people believe that getting into heaven is a series of trials and good deeds, but it isn’t that hard.

Jesus came to die for our sins, not to see his cross separated into pieces. He came as a holy sacrifice for us, so that no matter what we looked like,acted like,and talked like, we can all have a place in Heaven when we profess with our tongue that Jesus is King of Kings!

Another lyric is “It’s crowded in worship today. As she slips in trying to fade into the faces. The girl’s teasing laughter is carrying farther than they know.”

We are the body of Christ, we are here to heal and reach! But when we fight about denominations and choose legalism over Christ, we are not reaching as far as we could when we are all put into one body.

We don’t need to tease the brothers and sisters we love. Instead we need to reach, reach higher than the mountains, and farther than the stars in the sky. When we are united, instead of divided, we can move the mountains and we can sing God’s praise through every peak, every galaxy that glistens, every star that sparkles, and every crack in this world. We can push through anything as long as we remain humble and united in Christ.

Bananas and Mountains

A group of scientists placed five monkeys in a cage. In the middle of the cage, they placed a ladder with bananas on the top. Every time a monkey went up the ladder, the scientists soaked the rest of the monkeys with cold water.

After a while, every time a monkey attempted to climb the ladder, the others beat up the one on the ladder. After some time, no monkey dared to go up the ladder–regardless of the temptation.Scientists then decided to substitute one of the monkeys.

The first thing this new monkey did was to go up the ladder.

Immediately the other monkeys beat him up. After several beatings, the new member learned not to climb the ladder–even though he never knew why.

A second monkey was substituted. The same thing occurred, and in fact, the first monkey participated in the beating of the second monkey. A third monkey was changed and yet again, the beating ritual was repeated.

The fourth was substituted, and then the fifth: each time the beating was repeated. What was left was a group of five monkeys which although never having had a shower, continued to beat up any monkey who attempted to climb the ladder.

When I was talking about the church that was split into two,they had no idea why they weren’t a church they just continued being divided.

We are like the monkeys in this experiment: we are beating ourselves up because of something of which we know nothing. And do you know the difference between the monkeys and us?

We have the ability to change the cycle; we have the ability to put churches together, and sing God’s praises together! We don’t have to be monkeys, we can move mountains!

God gives us the power to sing his praise and be strong in worship. God has put a foundation of faith to our lives and it is up to us to either keep it and grow with it, or destroy it and lose it for good.

God gives us the strength to move mountains, and our summit never ceases until it is heard by the heavens.

God can hear the worship and loves to hear the praise of His own children. In order to be a mountain-mover you must drop your monkey business: do not be held by the label of denominations— be a Christian first. Be wary of man-made labels.

Labels can lead to division. Instead, be mountain-movers together. Be Christians.

God doesn’t look at denominations, or choose Baptists, Catholics, Protestants,Lutherans, or Anglicans over another; He loves Christians. He loves people who unite in His name instead of dividing without Him and choosing an earthly label over Christ.

God Bless and Godspeed. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

P.S. If you have input, comment below! I would love to hear your three cents.

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Being you with God

Gregory Watson : June 3, 2014 7:05 pm : Columns, Gregory

being you with god

In order to be the person God wants you to be, you must have God in your heart.

God loves to see the real you revealed in His name. When you work a relationship with God, your real, God-ordained self is revealed.

There are so many things that God can work out with you, in so many different ways; but the conflict we fight with is How can I serve God? The great part about God is that you can serve Him in any role.

All you have to have is unfailing love and trust in Christ for Him to work His wonders in you!

How can I serve God?

You can serve God in any and every way. God doesn’t want your job, He wants your Faith in Him!

God will show you the way by pushing it into your heart: in Romans 12:2 it says “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”

All you have to do is be stuck into the Love of God and He will renew your mind so that your hands may be blessed for His amazing works!

God will work through us all, and the cool part about it is is that we only have to be ourselves.

God will work through us in our everyday’s work. In Ephesians 2:10, it says “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”

You see it yet? God has worked His mysterious wonders built inside of us all! And you know what else is amazing? All you have to be is you! God doesn’t like fakes, He loves the realness you use in God’s name!

You can serve God in every situation in life because God crafted you in His good hands so that we can carry out His deeds throughout the World. As we do this, we begin to see the greatness God blesses us with.

In 1 Timothy 4:4 it says, “For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving.”

God doesn’t care about what you do because everything here is His great Creation. The works you do in Christ will always be great, because God loves the Works you do in His name!

A Little Detour

I am a sixteen-year old teen who teaches, preaches, and reaches to others in Christ’s name. A person asked me “Why aren’t you with other teens? You seem so old and wise, so I can see some of that answer revealing itself, but how do you do it?”

I have never really fit in with younger kids, and I always was mingling with the older crowd. I was okay with it.

I replied, “I am what God wants me to be, I am the workmanship of Christ and He has crafted me to be this way and I will always love it because He has given me an opportunity to use my mind in the good of all!”

I never need to fit in because God has His great plans for me.

In Proverbs 16:3 it says “Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.” God will always have His plans poured upon you and you will always serve Him. As long as you be your funny, clever, beautiful, amazing, inventive, intelligent, loud, quiet, obnoxious, jaw-dropping, heart-stopping, and joyous self that God ordained for you to be in Him.

God will work Himself into your everyday life. In Jeremiah 29:11 it says, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

He is planning a future so vast and amazing it can never be measured, He has greatness for you through Christ Jesus so amazing that it can’t compare to this world! He will use His amazing grace inside of you everyday and all you have to do is be yourself in Christ!

One day, God will use you and you will not even notice it.

All people who keep faith will see the power God can bless you with. He gives us so many blessings, including everlasting life and love.

In Romans 6:23 is says “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

God has given us free life, that in Him we will never die but live forever. With this amazing gift, He has blessed our hands to do His work. That is the amazing things God can do with you! All you have to do is:
1.)Keep Faith.
2.)Love God.
3.) And Be yourself.

If you do these things, then God will use your work in His name. Every day He will find your work to allow you to help many people. All you have to do is let God take your work in His hands and He will use your unique, outstanding, quirky, wacky, weird, hilarious, noisy, silent, and one-in-a-million talents — part of you as a new creature in Christ — in His mysterious ways.

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Guns And Sandwiches

Gregory Watson : May 29, 2014 6:34 pm : Columns, Gregory

If guns kill people, people must be salami.

People say guns kill people. So if I eat salami, does that make me a sandwich?

guns and sandwichesThe more I see, there is more on television that promotes violence, sexual immorality, drug use, child abuse, rape, abortion, and murder. Television sometimes affects viewers more than real-life encounters do. Is it because of us Christians?

On T.V. , They make us out as the bad “cult” religion. That makes me furious, especially when I am trying to teach in a world where T.V and rumors about the christian faith portray us as oppressive cultists. Far from it.

When the top topic is”Who can make the bloodiest, goriest, most sexually provocative movie?” Guns allow me to protect myself and family from society’s way of thinking. It helps me try and stop the world from affecting my family.

If you really want to be technical (which many people don’t like), how many Christian shooters have shot up a school?

None. I have not seen a Christian on this entire world that has killed an innocent.

Some television centers I know demote the act of praying in the name of Christ, but they in a heartbeat can promote gay marriage, terrorism, and abortion! When I hear something about a Christian owning a gun , I smile. I smile for the simple fact that I know where it is going to be held, what it is being used for, and why.

There is a big difference between a fanatic with a gun and a Christian protecting Himself/Herself from those fanatics. When lawmakers refused to reverse the ban on prayer from school, do you know what I did? I prayed. When people bring sin into television broadcasting, do you know what I did ? I turned it off.

When a Christian buys a gun, do you know what I do? I let them. In Proverbs 27:19 it says “As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart.”When someone has a gun, I don’t look at the contents of the weapon, I look at the contents of the soul. The soul has the greatest quality of a person and all you have to do is look. A gun doesn’t kill a person. neither does the bullet. It is the person who pulled the trigger, and lingers underneath.

Bulletproof vest, or Jesus Christ?

I believe in guns and religion but I would never own one, I need none. I watched a movie called Revelation Road, (Side note : If you haven’t watched it ,you should!), David A.R. White came into a store trying to sell a bulletproof vest. The store clerk said ” I don’t need one, now you tell me would you take rest on a thin plate of metal or Jesus Christ?” David stood there naming the characteristics on the vest, and as he spoke he was interrupted. “There is no reason why this flimsy metal can withstand the power of God!” And that is what we should do, we shouldn’t rely on guns, because we have the greatest weapon of all! And that is Jesus Christ .

I have been planning a trip to Uganda, and my eight friends and I will be leaving to Africa. My little brother (who is 14) told me ” You are going to die if you go to Uganda without a gun,” I laughed at that. I know that if I die, I did it doing what I loved and possibly saving someone. It is not the fact of being afraid of dying, it is failing a mission of God that scares me. I told Him “I am a peacemaker, I am here to show love and kindness to all my brothers!”

In Matthew 25:40 it says “And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, what you did for one of the least of these brothers of Mine, you did for Me.'” When you treat other people with love, you treat Jesus with it as well. I don’t need a gun because preaching requires two things, your Bible and your voice. That’s all. To my audience that listens to my preaching, never choose a gun over an opportunity to preach. A gun cannot withstand the power of God!

I am not saying to start preaching to a guy with a gun at your head, but in some cases it actually works. In Georgia, A gospel song saved a 10-year-old Atlanta boy from his kidnapper. Willie Myrick said he was in his front yard and bent down to pick up money when somebody grabbed him and threw him in a car.“He told me he didn’t want to hear a word from me,” Myrick said. That’s when Myrick began to sing a gospel song called “Every Praise.” The kidnapper started cursing and repeatedly told Myrick to shut up, but he wouldn’t. He sang the song for about three hours until the kidnapper let him out of the car.

Now are you a sandwich ? I know I am not. SO what would you put rest in ? A bulletproof vest, or Jesus? Keep in mind: the bulletproof is not reliable all the time, and in close range it never works at all. SO is it the vest? Or Christ?

Because a gun doesn’t kill people, it is the person with the gun that does. Are you a sandwich?

P.S. Thanks for listening,and I hope you guys what I got so far.Thank you and God Bless.

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Never Alone

Gregory Watson : May 23, 2014 8:51 pm : Columns, Gregory

Never alone

There are times in our lives when we think ” Where is God? Where is His Love?Are you still there?” And that is the point I want to work with today! We view the Good and thank Him for only the Good, than we turn our backs on Him the moment something bad occurs.The Devil wants to test your faith in God, He sees the unanswered questions and lingers doubt inside. And with those hidden agendas in Evil’s mind,we are blinded by the good God gives us and the Bad. God brings the love in an everyday World, and because God is omnipresent–He is here, there, and everywhere all at the same time–He can share His love to people in the Past, Present, and the Future.

Where is God?

The main conflict we face with in life is “Where is God?”, and at most times most Christians lose faith in God because we don’t feel He is there. BUT THAT IS NOT TRUE! Even before you were born God expected you in His Kingdom, when we ate the apple in Genesis 3:7, “Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.”

God had given us a test we blamed on the Devil and on Adam and Eve, but it was also a trial for a bigger purpose.When we ate the Apple we began to see the world and become ashamed, but we also had the ability of free will! The ability to choose God or–shun Him.

And to those who have accepted Christ as your Savior, He has blessed our Hands to do Greater Works than HIM! In John 14:12 it says “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.”This tells that you will be able to do all things Jesus did, but greater when you do it in His name. God gave us the gift to evangelize people in His name, and that is one thing God smiles at everyday.

He gets to welcome people who willingly choose Him. And that is a brilliantly hidden gift we never saw. And as for the well being of God I must inform you that He is here. God is in every single one of us, whether we choose to see Him or not. He is in every Brother and Sister in Christ and is spreading everyday against the ongoing battle of a new Revelation!

God is a small light in every one of us and shines from every small stone in the world. God said in a Bible verse (I am not yet familiar with it) said “If all people turned away from me then the rocks will sing my praise!” And that is the power of Christ and when we become one body of God we begin to spread His word in every situation on the planet! God is here to stay in every piece of us and when you pray to Him. He listens. Everyday He makes sure that you have a truly Blessed day with many opportunities affront to show you that you are never alone. (And for the people who have bad days keep reading for more teaching.)

Where is His Love?
We are always going to be conflicted by the question ‘Where is His Love?’, from what we see on a daily basis in the news of school shootings, storms, mass panics,  earthquakes, murders, suicides, bombings, hurricanes, and volcanoes we see the pain of this world all the time. So where is the love ? In Psalms 13:5 it says ” Though I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in you salvation.” Everybody takes solace in the place of horror,but they fail to acknowledge the beauty of God’s UNFAILING love! We see the pain but where is the Amazing Grace I hear so much about? If you truly believe in God and you know that He is King of Kings then you can be patient and see His miracles unfold. In a couple of examples as followed by this year! These are true stories.
“Hours before the bank foreclosed on Granview Baptist Church in Morganton, North Carolina, an anonymous person paid off $345,000,a huge portion of the church’s loan.”
“Ruth Graham – daughter of Dr. Billy Graham – Some years ago after an outdoor church picnic, our pastor’s wife discovered the diamond from her engagement ring was missing. It had fallen out. Where? When? It was anybody’s guess. We paused to pray and ask for God to help us locate the small diamond. I am afraid none of us had much faith that we would ever find it. Everyone stopped what they were doing and began to look. We went through the grass, the garbage, the sink, cooking pots — everything — with a fine-tooth comb. We did it all again the next day. To no avail. The small diamond was gone. We carried on with the week. It rained. The grass was mowed. But we kept an eye out – just in case. A week later my daughter was playing and spied something sparkling in the grass. She thought it was a rhinestone from her baby doll’s outfit, but she looked a bit closer, picked it up from the grass and dirt. It didn’t look like anything from her baby doll. She brought it inside to ask what I thought. It was the lost diamond!”

DO you see yet? We see the bad in all the world yet we can’t even see the ‘diamond in the grass’ in our lives. God gives us miracles every day, and in those miracles hides His infinite love. He is always here to show the love we’ve missed all along ! God gives us the ability to create new life and new beauty so that His love can be spread, (Another Gift), He has blessed upon us numerous of gifts like singing, music, loving, running, driving, jumping, and so much more.
In the Book of Job, God let Satan test Job’s faith by taking everything Job held dear! He continuously was tested and in every situation, He humbly fell to His knees in worship! And that is the type of love we should show every day.

Long story short, Job got rewarded for His turmoil and got His to see the beauty and love God can bestow in all of us .

Are you still there?

The problem with many people in Christ is the feeling like nobody is listening,and sometimes you have that message in your head always lingering around “ARE YOU STILL THERE?”, that question is always reverberating in your head and amazingly this message is heard not only in your mind, but also on T.V. , the new way of entertainment is a way of downing God and pushing away His existence.

The messages people spread are always dissing and throwing the reasons God is not here, but they forget that even if we all doubt God’s existence, the rocks will sing God’s praise . The message in the Bible will always contradict the ways of today because people in this new world push the word from the world.

God is here but people are pushing Him away at every point. God is alive! And on my recent thought I said that “God lives inside of you!” and He does. He is hearing our praise in every crack and crevice in the Earth! You are the light that proves God is still here. Every day you sing His praise is another day that proves that He is alive, and is showing that daily and in every situation we are never alone!

P.S . : I hope you guys enjoy my first blog and column and I send you love and blessings in Jesus’ name, Amen!

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