YOU THINK IT’S HOT NOW!?

  • Original Teaching: Hell: NO!
  • Date: July 28, 1993
  • Location: Calvary Temple in Sterling, VA
  • Teacher: Pastor Star R Scott
  • Scripture: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerors, and idolators, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. Revelation 21:8
  • Review By: Jason Felton

Over the last month we’ve been taking a look at the spiritual warfare we are involved in on a daily basis. Everyday there is a war going on for your soul and the souls of everyone around you. We reviewed everything from how the enemy tries to attack us to what we are fighting for. In this post we want to take a look at the consequences of not fighting for ourselves and the people around us and what happens if we give up in this spiritual warfare. Let me tell you something beloved, the consequences are worse than anything you could imagine! 

If you’ve been living on the east coast the past few weeks, you’ve probably been experiencing the summer heatwave. I know in the dc area (where this blog is based) we’ve had almost two straight weeks of temps 90 or above.  Well, this week I want to talk about a place that’s hotter than any heatwave you’ve ever experienced and that place is called Hell! And unlike the relief you can get here on earth, in Hell there are no water parks, swimming pools, shady spots, or even cold glasses of water!

I once had a person say that they were basically going to throw a party to celebrate the devil. They were going to have devil’s food cake, deviled eggs etc… Basically saying that hell and the devil are one big joke. Other people say “I’m going to party with my hell4buddies in hell. I can’t wait. It’s going to be awesome!!” Let me tell you something folks. There is NOTHING that is awesome about hell. Hell, is a place of literal, spiritual fire in the spirit realm and it will last forever. In Matthew 13:50 the Bible says that Hell is a place where there will be weeping, and wailing and gnashing of teeth. Mark 9 says it’s a place where the worm dies not and the fire is never quenched. Unlike the bar in “Cheers,” Hell will be a place where nobody will know your name. You will be a totally forgotten being. You will be aware of everyone, but won’t care for anyone. And no one will care for you. It will be a place where NOBODY will hear your screams and cries for help.  Sound like a party yet? Well maybe it hasn’t started. Let’s continue.

In Luke 16:19-31 Jesus tells the parable of the rich man and a beggar named Lazarus. You can check it out if you get a chance; but long story short the rich man who had everything here on earth except Jesus, died was buried and went to hell. Maybe this is where the party starts? Let’s look. In verse 23 it says that the rich man while drinking and hanging out with his buddies… Oh wait that’s not what it says. It says while he was looking up from hell in torment, he pleaded and begged for mercy. In verse 24 it says that it was so hot in the flames that he was begging for just a single drop of water for temporary relief. Anything to quench the flames!! Finally in verse 28 we see that not only was Hell a place that he wanted to escape from, but he pleaded that somebody be sent to warn his brothers to change their ways so they could escape this place of eternal torment. So we’ve looked at several scriptures now, but we’ve found no mention of a party.

“Well thank God I’m a pretty good person!” Unfortunately there’s a lot of pretty good people going to hell. Did you see that video above? Those are some scary statistics about the reality of Hell!! “Yeah, but I’m not a murderer, rapist, or anything like that. In fact I haven’t committed adultery or done anything remotely bad.” Well for those of you who say that I ask you to take a look at Revelation 21:8. We see here that not only are the “really bad people” going to hell, but it also says liars, idolaters, and as a matter of fact ANYBODY who doesn’t believe God and His Word (in totality)!290560_f520

People often say” Well God’s a God of love and mercy. He wouldn’t do anything like that.” Or maybe you’ve asked this question, “How can a good God send man to the hell that you’re depicting?” Man was never intended to go to Hell, but the Bible teaches that Hell was created for the devil and his angels. Unfortunately, because of the pride and rebellion of man Hell is now open to us as well. Hell, is for anybody that is a rebel and who exalts their own will above the will of God (Luke 12:5-9). Before you question the justice of God, first understand the condition of man. Every good thing we have is a free gift of God. It is neither deserved or earned. He is a God of love and mercy, but He cannot go contrary to who He is and suffer iniquity and rebellion to his sovereign being.

It is just for every man to be judged and cast into hell and Romans says every one of us has the knowledge of God within ourselves and are without excuse. Thank God though that He has done everything to keep man from going to Hell. Remember John 3:16? God loved the world so much that  He gave his only son, that whosever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. The good news is that God is not willing that any would perish (2 Peter 3:9). However, you cannot come in your own righteousness. There is only one way you can come and that is through the finished work of Jesus. The free gift of God’s love and forgiveness is available to you today. No one who comes and repents before Him with a broken heart will be rejected (Psalm 51:17). The price has been paid!!

Friends, do not fall for the lies of the devil. The devil has already been sentenced to eternal damnation, and his number one goal it to take you down with him. Herealhell will tell you hell’s not that bad. He will tell you you’re too good of a person to go to hell. He will tell you that God would never send man to hell because He’s too nice. Folks those are all lies that Satan wants you to believe so you can join him in eternal suffering. Hell is very real and all those who don’t have Jesus as the Lord of their life will find themselves in that lake of fire. So as we end today, ask yourselves these questions! “If you died today where would you end up?” If your answer to the first question is heaven, because you’re born again then the next question would be, “What am I doing to warn others around me?”

 

 

A Fight Worth Fighting!

  • Original Teaching: Spiritual Warfare
  • Date: April 18, 2001
  • Location: Calvary Temple in Sterling, VA
  • Teacher: Pastor Star R Scott
  • Scripture: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” Ephesians 6:10-11
  • By: Jason Felton

As the month of July winds down we want to wrap up our series on spiritual warfare. In the last few weeks we’ve seen the tactics the enemy uses to try to bring us down and what we can do to fortify ourselves against such attacks. This week we want to look at what we are fighting for and what’s at stake in this spiritual warfare we find ourselves in. Let me tell you it’s a fight worth fighting!

harvest“Alright Jason, I’ve studied my opponent, memorized God’s Word, and got my armor on! What’s next?” Well, now you’ve got to attack! As we saw last week we have to be on the offensive against the principalities and powers of darkness. You can’t be in the armor of God and not be going forward. Jesus has instructed us to go out into all the world and preach the gospel, lay hands on the sick, and cast out devils. We have adorned ourselves in the armor of God so we can go out as laborers into the fields and see the harvest set free. The power that has been given to us is for the sole purpose of establishing His kingdom. When’s the last time you spoke the Word of God and saw His power manifest through you in healing, casting out demons, or seeing the strongholds of sin destroyed? For a lot of us the answer is too long ago, but as Christians this is one of our top priorities!

When people encounter you on a daily basis they need to realize they’ve come into contact with the kingdom of God, the resurrected Christ. Do you see yourself like that? You are the representative of Jesus Christ here on this earth. When you speak with somebody, they should be hearing the words of Jesus Christ. That’s the boldness and confidence we need to have when we step out into the world! You see, there are too many people who call themselves Christians, but you can’t tell the difference between them and the world. Is that how you’re viewed? Does everybody know where you stand? If you’re living according to the Word of God there should and will be a noticeable difference in your life. People should take note that you’ve been with Jesus because of your bold witness!

If you are going to see experience the anointing of God and be adorned in His armor, you are going to have to use them for the right purpose. You can’t just put the armor on authorityto feel safe, to bring  joy, or to reap prosperity. That’s not what it’s for. The real purpose is to destroy the works of the evil one! It’s to see Satan cast down as lightning (Luke 10:18).  You’ve been given power and authority over all the power of the enemy (Luke 10:19), but this promise is conditional. It’s conditional upon your righteousness and your obedience to the Spirit of God. You may know this doctrine, but to what degree are you out about Father’s business in this time of harvest?  Are you pressing into the supernatural realm of faith or are you comfortable where you are?

Beloved as we end this series, how seriously do you take your ordination (Luke 10)? This commission the Lord has given us is not optional. In fact the Word of God says,  “He who knows to do good and does it not to him it’s sin (James 4:17).” If you have the armor of God on then your feet will be shod with gospel of peace! You will be out in the highways and byways compelling them to come. There are so many lives at stake, and time is short. Think about it! The majority of people you come in contact with on a daily basis are going to a devil’s hell! Coworkers, family members, neighbors, people we pass on the streets! All fightthese people need Jesus, and you have been given the words of eternal life. You have the answer! So how about it? Where are your treasures today? Are you more concerned with your own little kingdom, or are you going to be caught up with establishing the kingdom of God? It’s not going to be easy. You are being sent out as a lamb among wolves (Luke 10:3). But the good news is you’ve been equipped and empowered to fight. You’re not in this battle alone, because the greater one (Jesus) is fighting for you! It’s a fight worth fighting for!

 

Put on the WHOLE armor of God!

  • Original Teaching: Spiritual Warfare
  • Date: April 18, 2001
  • Location: Calvary Temple in Sterling, VA
  • Teacher: Pastor Star R Scott
  • Scripture: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” Ephesians 6:10-11
  • By: Jason Felton

Over the last couple of weeks we have taken a look at the spiritual warfare we are involved in and the enemy we are fighting against.  We saw that we are no match against the principalities and powers of darkness without the Word of God. Today, we are going to look at some other essential items we need as we combat the devil and that is the armor of God.

rylie armorEphesians 6:11 says, “Put on the whole armor of God that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” The first thing you need to realize is that you need to put on the WHOLE armor of God! You can’t pick and choose the pieces. If you’re going to stand against the powers of darkness you must be adorned with the shield of faith, the sword of the spirit, the helmet of salvation, the breastplate of righteousness, the belt of truth, and have our feet shod with the gospel of peace! The devil goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (I Peter 5:8). Those he is going to devour are those who do not have their armor on. “But I’ve been saved for 40 years!” Your intentions, your doctrine, your track record are no good against Satanic wiles! Even your own personal disciplines, resolves, or the fact that you may be a third generation Christian isn’t sufficient to stand against these principalities and powers of darkness. Satan will whip you and you will fall without the armor of God on!

How seriously are you taking your opponent? Your opponent reached into the garden of Eden (where there was no sin) and took Adam (who knew no sin like you and I do) and took him down. Remember Moses? He talked to God face to face. When he came down off the mountain his face shined with the glory of God! Yet the devil was able to keep him from entering the promised land. David couldn’t build the temple of God because of the sin he committed. And how about good old Peter? He walked with Jesus and was part of the inner circle, but when it came down to it he denied the Lord three times. What am I saying? Don’t think of yourself more highly then you ought to think! Greater men then you and I have fallen.  Without the whole armor of God on at all times we will be susceptible to those fiery darts that are trying to take us out!

“So what do I do?” Having done all to stand, you need to stand (Ephesians 6:13)! Don’t give back any ground that you’ve taken from the kingdom violenceenemy. In this warfare we are involved in, are you in defensive mode or offensive mode? Are you maintaining or are you attacking the kingdom of darkness? Brothers and sisters, you will not make it if you maintain. You will not finish this race if you are on the run. You must set out against the principalities and powers of darkness! Matthew 11:12 says, “The kingdom of heaven suffers violence, but the violent take if by force!” We are to be a people who are on the offensive! Our weapons of warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds (2 Corinthians 10:4)! As bad as the devil is, you have been given all power and all authority over all the power of the enemy and nothing by any means shall harm you praise God (Luke 10:19)! What promises!! There is nothing more rewarding than making a stand for righteousness and seeing God glorified in it!

So what about you? What have you been doing to prepare for the battle that is raging around us? What are you doing to set out against the sin that’s trying to take over your life or the life of those around you? Are you as much in love with your first love today as you were last year. How about 10 years ago? How about 40 years ago? Beloved, you can’t be reading your Bible less, praying less, witnessing less, believing God less and think that we’re winning battles against the enemy! Just because you’re not involved in some kind of “gross sin” doesn’t mean you are living victorious. Whenever you’re looking for a time of ease, comfort, or slack you are giving place to the devil. Watch and pray that you enter not into temptation (Matthew 26:41).  You must be absolutely in love with and dependent on God! He must be your treasure more than anything else in this life! It’s only by Him that you have the victory!

power-to-bindAs we end for this week, think about this. As I was meditating on the armor of God the other day it’s cool to see how the Lord describes and places each article. Think about the warfare of that time. What were the two most important weapons that those soldiers had? Their sword and their shield. These weapons allowed them to attack the enemy, but without them they would have easily overtaken. In the spiritual warfare we are involved in it’s the same thing. The sword of the spirit (God’s Word) and the shield of faith (our faith in God and His word) are the two most important items we have. Our faith united with God’s Word allows us to set out against the enemy. Without them though we would begin to question our salvation (the helmet). One by one our righteousness (the breastplate) or our rights as believers would slowly erode. We would begin to question the truth of God’s word (the belt). And finally we would lose our peace (feet) because the gospel would no longer be first and foremost in our lives. Bottom line! Put on the WHOLE armor of God! The greatest way you can honor God is by finishing this race!

 

 

Know your enemy! Know the Word!

  • Original Teaching: Spiritual Warfare
  • Date: April 18, 2001
  • Location: Calvary Temple in Sterling, VA
  • Teacher: Pastor Star R Scott
  • Scripture: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” Ephesians 6:10-11
  • By: Jason Felton

 

In last weeks post we began to take a look at the fact that we are involved in a daily spiritual warfare for our soul. Satan is coming to steal, kill, and destroy and we need to be ready. This week we want to look at some of the tactics the enemy uses and how we can begin to combat them!

thPRWHEWMZOne of the first things we need to realize is that the war you are involved in today is a war for the truth that is in your heart. The enemy is trying to destroy you and one of the biggest things he is doing is to get you to move off of the truth of God’s Word. The devil doesn’t have any new tactics. He’s been using the same ones for thousands of years. Everything you battle with hinges on this one question, “Has God said?” Do you recognize that question? It’s the question the serpent asked eve, it’s the question he used to tempt Jesus with, and it’s the question he uses on us today! The devil is going about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour! Beloved, that scripture is as sure as any other promise we hold onto that’s mentioned in the Bible. Did you wake up with that on your mind this morning? The enemy will do anything to keep you from doing the will of God!

So what about you? What do you do when your will comes in conflict with the will of God? “Well the Word of God says!” No, I’m not asking what the Word says, I’m asking what do you do! What is your track record? You see, where we get into trouble is not our doctrine (we know that very well). Where we get into trouble is the application of the doctrine in the immediate circumstances that are adverse to our comfort zone. Simply put, a lot of times we choose not to apply God’s word because it’s going to cost us something. If you are going to stand in these last days, there is going to have to be a habitual obedience in your life! You will need to be spiritually minded in how you approach these daily decisions.

“The enemy sounds pretty powerful? How do I combat this?” Well, how did Jesus respond when he was thI0D1ZI1Btempted by the devil? He responded, “It is written”. You need to know the Word of God! Satan will devour people who can’t say, “It is written”! Do you know God’s Word? Have you already made decisions in your life that I’m going to do that Word no matter what the circumstances? Or do you have to think about every situation? You can’t wait for the circumstances to arrive. Our minds need to already be made up! Now, I’m not saying the thought of “what should I do?” won’t pop up in your mind. What I’m saying is when it does we pull it down immediately because we already know what to do. We do the Word of God!

How are you contending with the wiles of the devil? In every situation you face it comes down to are you going to do the Word of God or not? That’s the bottom line. In every situation Satan wants you to believe that this situation is just a little bit different. Maybe this situation doesn’t require you to do the Word of God entirely. Oh, you’ll still do the Word, but just not quite to the degree that God requires. After all if I do it will cost me my job, my spouse, my children, my reputation… Surely God wouldn’t want me to be lose these things. Surely God wouldn’t want me to be uncomfortable. “Has God said?” YES!!! “It is written!” We need to set out against the devil with the sword of the spirit (God’s word) in hand.

th4I7CBFCTSo as we wind down for today we need to realize that we can’t let the enemy win these daily battles we are involved in! Satan is not going to come out and blatantly oppose you. He’s just going to try to put little doubts and fears in your mind. He won’t tempt you (most likely) with gross sins! He knows we are too smart for that. What he will do is try to trip you up with the daily decisions. You know the ones I’m talking about! It’s the little headache that pops up before church. The boss who wants you to work late everyday. The decision to share the gospel or prefer self. The choice to love your wife or compromise to keep the peace. How you respond in these daily decisions habitually will determine where you’ll end up. Satan knows it, do you? Friends, we need the wisdom of God to protect us from the fiery darts of the enemy that are so appealing to the flesh! Make the decision now to choose God’s word in every situation! Having done all to stand, STAND!

That’s what we are going to talk about next week! How we can stand! We know we need God’s Word, but that’s only part of it. In this warfare we are in we need to have the armor of God on as well. I hope you’ll join me for part 3 on this series on spiritual warfare!

 

Independence day? Not necessarily for the believer!

  • Original Teaching: Spiritual Warfare
  • Date: April 18, 2001
  • Location: Calvary Temple in Sterling, VA
  • Teacher: Pastor Star R Scott
  • Scripture: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” Ephesians 6:10-11
  • By: Jason Felton

 

The fourth of July is one of my favorite holidays! It’s a day of food, family, and fireworks, but more importantly it’s a day where we celebrate our nation’s independence. That independence gives us the religious freedom we enjoy today to gather together to hear the Word of God and be bold witnesses for Christ in the nation we live in. But for us as believers, the fact of the matter is, we are at war! The question I want to ask today is what are you doing to prepare yourself?

thNYBB6L2BNow, of course we as a nation are not at war, but as Christians we are daily fighting a spiritual war for our souls. Satan is going about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (I Peter 5:8) and his goal for our lives is to steal, kill, and destroy (John 10:10). We need to understand the power that the enemy has. We in and of ourselves are no match for him and in fact greater men than you have fallen! Thankfully, one of the rights we have as believers is to live victoriously over the power of the enemy! We’ve been legally given the ability to go out and be more than conquerors (Romans 8:37). Two things will help you stand in these last days; preparation and knowing who you are in Jesus Christ.

The first thing we need to realize is that if you’re going to be in authority, you are going to have to be under authority. Your authority over the kingdom of darkness is going to be in direct correlation to your submission to your head, Jesus! To the degree you live subordinate to Him, is the degree you have to destroy the works of the devil. Let’s look at an example from Acts 19. Do you remember the seven sons of Sceva? When they approached the man that had an evil spirit they said, “In the name of Jesus Christ whom Paul preacheth.” That was their main problem. They didn’t know Jesus. They had heard about him. They had seen others do this exact same act. But in their own lives they had no relationship with Him. “So what happened?” Well the evil spirit answered, “Jesus I know, Paul I know, but who are you?”

Does the devil know who you are? Are you on his most wanted list? A lot of us know the doctrine, but just because you know thethJE2GAH3Z doctrine or can name the name of Jesus doesn’t mean you are going to get results. If you are going to get results then you need to come in the name of Jesus who YOU have a relationship with. Our strength is to be in the Lord. It doesn’t matter how much scripture you can quote, how much you’ve seen these works done before, or how long you have been born again. If you aren’t coming with the power and authority of the name of Jesus you are going to get smoked just like these guys did.

“So how do we get the victory?” Well first we need to empty ourselves of our own abilities. We need to stop trusting in ourselves and be totally reliant on God for everything. How have you been fighting your battles lately? Have you been praying and fighting in the heavenlies or have you been trusting in worldly wisdom? Do you have the armor of God on or have you begun trusting in the world’s weaponry? When you are in the midst of a trial do you seek God early (first) or is He your last resort? If you are going to stand victorious in these last days these are the things we need to be doing.

thLTI5V7OHSo as we close for today and we celebrate the Independence day holiday, we see in God’s word that as Christians we cannot be independent if we are going to be victorious against the powers of darkness. No, if we are going to be victorious then we are going to have to be absolutely dependent on Him. We are going to need to use the weapons He has given us to combat the wiles of the devil. If you’re going to represent the authority of God you better be ready for the consequences. So how about you?Are you ready to put the armor on and go to war? You won’t stand any other way! Be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might!

 

To Keep Your Faith From Failing (version 2.0)

 Original Teaching: To Keep Your Faith From Failing

  • Date: February 24, 1980
  • Teacher: Pastor Star R Scott
  • Scripture: My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; knowing this that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. James 1:2-4
  • Review by: Jason Felton

th0EDCQWROThis week we are going to begin reviewing a teaching by Pastor Scott that will help us examine the state of our faith and truly see James 1:4 as the testimony of our lives. Wouldn’t you like to be able to say that you are perfect, entire, and lack for nothing? I’m sure your answer like mine is a resounding YES! However, this perfection does not come without the temptations, tests, and trials that try our faith.

Have you turned on the news recently? Seems like everything you hear is bad news that only leads to anxiety. Am I going to get laid off tomorrow? How am I going to put my kids through college? What about my retirement? What if me or one my family members is diagnosed with some horrible illness? How am I going to make ends meet and pay my bills? Am I ever going to meet that special someone? So many questions!! But the good thing is the Word of God has all the answers. Matthew 6:34 says take to take no thought for tomorrow. I Peter 5:7 says to cast all your cares upon him, for he cares for you. Now, you may be thinking “Jason I know all of these scripture.” Then why is there so much anxiety, fear, and doubt dominating our lives?

The reality is that we don’t know our own hearts. We know the answers. We know the doctrine. Many of us even make positive thBV188P4Pconfessions, but we often move in fear that somewhere along the line the pressure will become so great that we’ll crumble under it. Beloved, we need to get our eyes off the circumstances and onto the promises of God’s Word. If you can do that, then I have good news for you. Your faith will never fail. IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN!

If you learn the concept that James is trying to teach us, IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN. If you will count it all joy in the midst of temptations, tests, and trials. If you will come to the understanding of the love that Father has for you. If you remember that He said He would never leave you or forsake you and in fact will complete that work that He started in you. If you would believe God’s Word that says you will never be tempted or tested past that which you are able to stand, then you will be victorious. Do you believe that? As hard as it seems right now in your life do you believe that? Maybe you feel like things are so difficult right now and everything is caving in on you. I want you to know, friends, that God will not allow you to be tempted past that which you are able to stand! You have the ability to walk out this thing successful and victorious!

The Bible tells us in Romans 10:17 that “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” One of the biggest tools we have to help increase our faith is the Word of God. When you’re in the middle of these things, Satan is going to attack you from every angle. He will get you to doubt, to fear, to question,  and to twist everything that you believe and that God’s Word says is true. In the Garden of Eden, the first thing Satan challenged Eve with was “Hast God said.” If we are going to have to faith to stand victorious then we MUST know the Word of God.

th4I9IJ8XPWhen Satan comes to you with “Hast God said” you tell him that “We are more than conquerors” (Romans 8:37) and “No weapon formed against us shall prosper” (Isaiah 54:17) and “God will not allow us to be tempted past that which we are able to stand and with every temptation, test, and trial He has made a way of escape.” And you call Satan what he is! He’s a liar and the father of lies! If you haven’t determined in your heart that God’s Word is truth and everything else (no matter what the circumstances may be) is a lie, then somewhere down the line you will faint in your mind and your faith will fail! But, if you’ll read through God’s Word and believe what it says, you will see the outcome has already been determined! WE WIN!!

Another tool that the Lord has given us to help us walk victoriously is the Holy Spirit. John 14:26 says ” The Comforter, the Holy Ghost whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you in all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you”.  The Holy Spirit fulfills the ministry of comforter in our lives. The word “comforter” means to come along side and to assist. He is dwelling inside us to bring us comfort so when we are going through a trial he will bring ballast and support to keep us from sinking. When it seems like this trial will never end and it seems like you don’t have strength to take another step, the Holy Spirit will begin to add the power whenever you need it to get you through the trial. You see, the two things we have talked about work hand and hand. If we will be men and women who do the Word of God and are full of the Holy Spirit, the Lord will allow these two things to work together to bring about victory in our lives IF we don’t faint!

Some us of are under the misconception that the trying of our faith builds faith. It doesn’t. The trying of our faith works patience (James 1:3). This is one thing we want to talk about that the Lord is trying to work in us, PATIENCE. Now what does this word patience really mean? Well it doesn’t mean to just hang in there or to endure or try to make it through somehow. The word patience means consistency. It means to be constant, unchanging, and not double minded. It means we don’t rejoice when the doctor’s report is good and say “whoa is me” when it’s bad. Patience is the consistency that we need that will allow us to say the same thing (what God’s Word says) time and time again without being moved by the circumstances. This consistency that’s being worked in us will allow us to look back at these temptations, tests, and trials and see that we have been successful in every other event.

You say “But Jason, I’ve failed at times.” No, you’re the winner! You are going to stand in Heaven one day and sing worthy is the th0QE7QO0ALamb. You may have been set back, but you haven’t failed. The game is not over yet! The only Christians who fail are the ones that quit before the game is over. The ones who choose to believe the circumstances over the promises of God’s Word. You will never be led astray if you follow the words of Jesus! How consistent is your dedication to the Word of God? We can’t change the Word of God to cover up our failures! We need to change our lifestyle to conform to the Word of God.

A perfect example from the Bible of how God views us as we go through these temptations, tests, and trials is the story of Abraham and Sarah. Romans 4:20 tell us that Abraham staggered not at the promises of God. What?! Does anybody remember a kid named Ishmael? Hebrews 11: 11 says that Sara through faith received strength to conceive and deliver a child past age because (and get this) she judged him faithful who had promised. Do you remember what Isaac’s name means?! It means laughter, because Sara laughed when she first heard this news. So Abraham had Ishmael and Sara laughed. In our minds we would probably view this as failure, but God views these two as people who were faithful and that didn’t waver from His promises.

You see God already knew how Abraham would handle these tests. The person that didn’t know was Abraham, and in our lives, it’s the same thing. God knows the beginning from the end, and as we saw last week, He won’t allow you to be tempted past that which we are able to stand. If we remain patient in the circumstances we are in WE WILL inherit the promises of God. But this means you can’t trust in the doctor’s report, and you can’t trust in what people are telling you about your kids, and you can’t trust in all the bad news.

th4NXF67NYFriends, I know it’s hard! But if we are going to be seated on the throne and reign with Him, we are going to have to suffer as He suffered. God’s testing us to see if he can trust us more and more with the operation of His Kingdom. Ultimately, He is using these temptations, tests, and trials we go through to bring us to perfection! That’s the end game! To bring us to to that place to where we can have the testimony that we all said that we wanted in Part 1 of this series.  That we may be perfect, entire, and wanting nothing (James 1:4). So count it all joy!!!

So as we’ve come full circle let me leave you with one last thought. God is not looking for people who are just talking the faith language (these people will fail). God is looking for a people who through faith and patience will stand until they’ve seen the promises of God’s Word come to pass. How do you get there? In EVERY situation and circumstance you find yourself in (good or bad) you look to Jesus who is the author and the FINISHER (perfecter) of your faith! (Hebrews 12:2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

 

Divine Guidance Part 3!

 

In the last few weeks we have seen who God uses to lead us and what the focus of our prayer  lives should be. As we wrap up this series on divine guidance we want to take a look at how we can rest in the perfect will of God for our lives.

cb2e0a448976139a6607a07af926272dProverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your steps.” One of the first things we see here is that we need to trust the Lord in our daily lives. Many of us are so worried about specific situations, that it causes us anxiety instead of resting in the peace of God that He is ordering our steps. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” (Philippians 4:6NKJV) The word of God tells us not to be anxious. Don’t be worried or fearful. If there is anxiety in your life then you have lost sight that the Lord is your shepherd. Rest in the fact that the Lord is divinely orchestrating every step of your life.

The next thing we see in Proverbs 3:5 (and this is one most of us really struggle with) is that we can’t lean on our own understanding. We need to realize that if we are going to walk in divine guidance, then we cannot approach God with any preconceived ideas. We can’t go into any situation with our minds made up. We can’t go into any situation thinking we have a right to know all the details or to know the plan from beginning to end. The moment we lean to our understanding we are not trusting in the Lord. “Well I’m sick, I’ve lost my job, my finances are a mess, I experienced a tragedy. This can’t be the will of God!” Maybe it is! Why is it every time we get under pressure we begin to pray whether this is where God wants us? Whether this is His will for our life?  Yes, God is not the author of sickness, chaos, or thY3MM7YQZconfusion, but He does allow certain things to happen in our daily lives to cause us to become more like Him. God orchestrates your circumstances! Where you are at right now is His will for your life. Are you going to trust the Lord with all your heart, or are you going to lean on your own understanding of the situation?

Proverbs 16:9 says, “A man’s heart devises his way: but the Lord directs his steps.” That word direct means “to set right.” Not every step is going to be right (we are human after all), but God will set it right. Even if you get off course from time to time, God will be there to knock you back on track.  Beloved, too many of us live in fear of making mistakes. Too many of us live in fear that we are going to miss the will of God. We need to live in confidence in the goodness of our heavenly Father and His desire to put us on course and work Christ-likeness in us. Look at the life of Jonah. He did everything wrong. God told him to go to Ninevah, but he went the complete opposite direction. He was directly opposing God’s will, and God still got him where He wanted him. God will interrupt your life for His specific purposes. That should give you confidence! He has a fish that’s just your size!

thL5D291MOAs we wind down this series we need to realize that this divine guidance we have been talking about has to be solely in the realm of faith. You’re not going to understand everything as you’re being led. Guidance doesn’t mean you know what’s going on. Guidance means you go and that you go in cheerful obedience. You’re probably not going to know the whole plan. In fact, if you do it’s probably yours! The Bible says His ways are unsearchable, who can know them! We need to trust in God and His Word! Have confidence and rest in the fact that if you are doing God’s Word and walking in His general revelation for your life then you are in His will. If you will be a man and woman that does the Word of God then He will direct your steps. So as we close for today, no matter where you are in your life (maybe you’re on the mountain top right now or maybe you are in what seems to be a never ending trial) God has you right where He wants you! He has a plan for your life! That plan is to everyday make you more like Him and to help you finish this race! What love! Let’s boast in the goodness of our heavenly father! He is worthy of our praise!!

Divine Guidance Part 2!

Over the last couple of  posts we have looked at God’s divine order in our lives and how He uses that order to give us divine guidance. This week we want to look at what we should be seeking guidance on and what we need to be praying about. I can let you know right up front, it’s probably not the things we spend most of our time seeking God on. Join me as we take a deeper look into the teachings on Divine Guidance.

th5FX0F3ABThe first thing we need to realize is that as Christians our focus should be on the eternal. However, in the church today too many of us are looking for guidance in all of the things that are not eternal. We get caught up with and worry about so many things, but God already knows the outcome. We get “entangled with the affairs of this life” just as Paul warned us not to in 2 Timothy 2:4. We spend most of our time praying about the new house, the new car, the new job, the next investment, the life’s mate, the next vacation, when we should be spending our time praying about and seeking those things that are above! “Well aren’t those things important?” Yes there are some important decisions in there that you need to seek God and get counsel on, but these things shouldn’t consume our prayer time! Colossians 3:2 says, “To set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” The problem in many of our lives is we have it backwards. Our affections are set on the things of the earth and not on the things that are above.

“So what are the eternal things we should be praying for?” David’s prayer (who was called a man after God’s own heart) in Psalm 51 is a great example of the things we should be praying about. Verse 10 says, “Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me.” The first thing we should be doing is asking the Lord to clean up our lives and make us more like Him. That should be our number one concern! Not the job, not the house, but being made more ion the image of Jesus Christ our Lord. Everyday we are being vexed as we are out and about in this world. We need daily ask the Lord to purify our hearts.

In thU2Q2OOAGverse 11 it goes on to say, “Cast me not away from thy presence..” Another thing we can pray for is that He would help us delight in his presence more than anything else. We get so caught up with our daily lives that a lot of times getting into God’s presence can be an after thought. I Corinthians 9:25 says, “We are to strive for the mastery and be temperate in all other things.” We need to be consumed with the presence of God! It should be so first and foremost in our lives that nothing else really even matters. Oh, we still have to function in this world, but we need to have the heart of Moses who said, “If your presence doesn’t go with me, I don’t want to go.”

The second half of Psalm 51:11 says, “Take not the Holy Spirit from me.” Friends, if we are going to stand in these last days we are going to need to be men and women who are full of the Holy Spirit! This “comforter” that the Lord has given us is one of the greatest methods of guidance we have in our lives. No, He’s not going to tell you necessarily what job to take or what car to buy, but He will lead and guide you into all truth (John 16:13). He will direct you back to the number one source of guidance and that is the Word of God. We need to be walking in the Spirit so we are not fulfilling the lusts of the flesh.

“Okay, so now that I’m getting all cleaned up what do I pray about next?” I love Psalm 51:13. It doesn’t get as much press as verses 10-12 that we all know from the song, but it’s equally important. David says in that verse, “Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners should be converted unto thee.” After the Lord deals with our own hearts, “lost souls” should be our most important prayer effort! All around us there are people who are lost, dying, and going to a Devil’s hell and we have the words of eternal life. We need to be asking the Lord to use us to be that light of the world and salt of the earth that He has called us to be. That we would follow His great commission to go into all the world and preach the gospel.

thDZV0I9EF“Okay, now it’s time to pray for all the other stuff!” First of all there is about 100 more scriptures I could give you on other things we could be praying and seeking guidance for. Second, you are still missing the point! God does not care about your stuff. He is not concerned with the standard of living we insist on. We need to be seeking first the kingdom of God. Beloved, if you get how God wants you to be, He will get you where He wants you to be! You want to know the will of God for your life? Well the Word of God tells us in I Thessalonians 4:3. It says “This is the will of God, even your sanctification.” So as we close for today, be caught up with becoming more like Him! Be caught up with being busy about His business! If we do, Deuteronomy 28:2 says that, “The blessings of the Lord will overtake you.” Father knows what we need, when we need it, and how He’s going to bring it about! We don’t need to be anxious! In fact that is what we are going to talk about next week. Resting in the fact that God has a perfect plan for your life and you are right where He wants you to be! I hope you’ll come back and join us.

Divine Guidance!

 

In last weeks blog we looked at the order of God and how we are to relate to that authority He has placed in our lives. This week we want to continue to expound upon that and also look at how we hear from God. I hope you enjoy this look at a classic teaching from 2002 entitled Divine Guidance.

One of the things we want to try to do in this teaching is to get you away from the fallacy of  seeking the spectacular and missing the supernatural. Truthfully, most of us are not going to hear audible voices, have visions, or see angelic manifestations. The majority of your life is going to be dictated by the Word of God as you pursue Christ-likeness. If you look through the scriptures you will see that the majority of God’s people were directed by spiritual authority and divine order more than they were some specific visitation. “Who is this spiritual authority?” As we saw last week, this designated authority comes through parents, husbands, and spiritual overseers. Most of us will be directed at different points in our lives by one of these methods.

The problem we run into is that most of us think we are Abraham. Most of us think we are Moses or Paul. Most of us think we are the ones who are directly going to hear from God. Don’t get me wrong. There are character traits in these men’s lives that we should emulate, but the fact of the matter is we most likely won’t hear from God like these guys did. ThethPA369MCN Israelites were led by the hand of Moses and Aaron (Psalm 77:20). Paul’s missionary team was assured of God’s will when God spoke to Paul, not to each one separately. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t been spoken to through a fiery bush in my backyard or been blinded on my way home from work recently. How do you think all those people under these men were led? The same way we should be. By the authority God has placed in our lives.

Everybody wants to know what God is saying. What He is generally saying is, “Wives, submit to your husbands (Ephesians 5:22). Children obey your parents (Ephesians 6:1). Everybody, Obey those that have the rule over you (Hebrews 13:17).” What’s the first question that comes to our minds when we think about that? What if they’re wrong?! Well, unless thy are telling you to do something contrary to the Word of God my Bible says to obey. Trust God that He will work out the rest. Most of us don’t like to hear that. Most of us don’t like the fact that God can lead us through other people’s counsel. “I don’t need counsel! I need to hear from God!” Who do you think it is that’s speaking through your parents, your wife, or your pastors? Don’t despise the messengers God places in your life. Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitfully wicked, who can know it?” That is why we need to verify what we’re “hearing from God” with the Word and with counselors.

thBCJNLSYTBrothers and sisters, we can’t bypass God’s obvious forms of guidance because of some specific thing you’ve found, loophole you’ve discovered, or doubt you may have. The moment you reject the general, revealed will of God you will be confused with the specific direction of God. The Word of God should be the first place we look for guidance and we’ve already seen the instructions it has given us on how we hear from God. Do not listen for “voices” until you know everything there is to know about what God has spoken in His Word! If you keep seeking a voice you will hear one, but it won’t be God’s. It will probably be your own voice and now you’ve become a candidate for deception.

As we close for today let me leave you with one last practical example. What if you asked your children to make their beds and instead of being obedient they told you they wanted to speak to God first and see if that was His will for them. They said thanks mom, I’ll take that under advisement. “Oh they’d be in trouble for sure! They can’t speak to me like that!!” Then why is it different when our spiritual overseers ask us to do something? We expect our kids to be obedient and to trust us, why shouldn’t those the Lord has placed over us be treated with the same respect. You see, it’s easy when you’re the one that’s in charge. When you’re the one that’s giving the orders. Friends, we need to trust God that He has placed us in the body as He sees fit (I Corinthians 12:18) and that those He has placed over us He is leading and directing. We don’t need to be anxious! We don’t need to be questioning! We just need to trust that He has everything under control and nothing in your life is happening that is not going according to His divine purpose.

Divine Order, Divine Life

  • Original Teaching: Divine Order, Divine Life
  • Date: November 19, 1980
  • Location: Calvary Temple in Sterling, VA
  • Teacher: Pastor Star R Scott
  • Scripture: “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.” Romans 13: 1-2
  • By: Jason Felton

In the last few months we’ve talked about order in our marriages and order in our homes. This week we want to focus on order in the church. So join me as I review a teaching from 1980 entitled “Divine Order, Divine Life”.

thKWQA0240One of the first things you will notice in even just a casual reading of scriptures is that God is a God of order. From the created universe all the way down to the instructions given for the tabernacle, everything God does has order behind it. Well there is another area that God set up order in and that is with His designated authority. In our marriages, in our homes, and in the church there is an order that God has set up that we must subordinate to. Wives submit to your husbands. Children obey your parents. Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. Do you cringe just reading these statements? These are all aspects in God’s Word that deal with order and the only way you can be content in moving in true Biblical order is to have complete confidence in God and His Word. Your flesh is going to despise this, but it will set your spirit free. If you truly believe God is all powerful and all knowing then you can rest in His form of government.

Who was the first guy to ever get out of order? Lucifer, right?! One of the most highly regarded angels and one of the most thLISEKC5Dbeautiful creatures ever created desired to ascend above the most high God. And because of that he got out of order and it cost Him. Ever since then Satan has been using that same tactic on mankind. The tactic to divide and conquer. The tactic of getting yourself to think of yourself more highly than you ought to and walk outside of God’s order. You can see it all throughout scripture right? Adam and Eve, in the story of Moses on a couple different occasions, Satan tempting Jesus in the wilderness…. The common theme in every of one of these examples is the temptation to break order and in our lives today Satan is trying to do the same thing.

“Well is it really that big of a deal?” YES! Romans 13 says that those who resist the powers that be and the ordinances of God shall receive damnation. Want a few Biblical examples of that? The broken order in the story of Adam and Eve resulted in them being kicked out of the garden and brought about a curse on mankind. Korah and Dathan challenged the authority of Moses and the earth swallowed them up. Saul didn’t follow God’s order to destroy a nation entirely and his kingdom was stripped from his hands. “Well that’s the old testament!” Okay, how about a new testament example? Ananias and Sapphira didn’t follow God’s order when it came to giving and both of them were struck down dead. Beloved, if you give the flesh its way it will bring you destruction. Satan can take you captive at his will whenever he wants when you are moving in strife and rebellion. I Samuel 15:23 says, “Rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft and stubbornness as idolatry.” Galatians 5 says that those who partake in witchcraft will not inherit the kingdom of God. I would say God takes this pretty seriously!

“Well I can submit to God!” Really? How do you submit to His designated authority? If you’re not submitting thEX0DXX6Pto God’s designated authority, then you’re not submitting to Him. When you are resisting authority you are resisting God. Children, when you are walking in disobedience to your parents you are resisting God! Wives, when you are not submitting to your husbands you are resisting God. When we as Christians are not walking in order with the authority God has placed in our lives in our overseers (pastors, elders, etc…) then we are resisting God. Just because you are a born again, spirit filled student of the Word of God does not mean that you have direction and control over your own life. You are called to be in submission to the King of Kings AND those He sets in authority. To do anything other than that is to reject the Word of God and if you reject Him, He will reject you!

So as we close for today, realize that to be in authority we have to be under authority. We are called as kings and priests, but we also have to realize that the greatest in the kingdom is the servant of all. “Well what if my husband… What if my parents…. What if my pastors….” Brothers and sisters rest in the fact that everything in authority has been put in place by the wisdom of God. He has placed those in the body as He sees fit. We don’t have to worry! God has got this under control and if anything begins to be done outside of His Word then HE will take care of it. Divine order brings divine life!