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Monthly Archives: March 2006

A Passion for Preaching

(I wrote this about a year ago and thought it would give some food for thought.- OKpreacher)

A Passion for Preaching
By RDB


I have recently realized that many that claim to believe the Bible are apathetic towards the preaching of the Bible. There is an ever increasing desire to have shorter and shorter sermons. There is a greater desire to have preachers stand up and entertain a crowd then to bring forth a life changing message from God’s Word. Even among preachers there is a dying of the desire to preach. We have come up with every way to reach the lost except through the anointed expository preaching of God’s Word and we have a generation that knows less about Christ then ever before. In Mark, Jesus came as a preacher. Paul writes that the preaching of the cross is the power of God. In Acts, it was through Peter’s sermon that 3000 people were saved. The main reason preaching doesn’t effect us anymore is because we don’t expect it to. Another reason is that preachers don’t take the time to study God’s Word to get God’s Message and surrender enough to have God’s power in delivering that message. Most preachers have preached their people to sleep, transforming the pew into a bed. Preaching God’s Message isn’t enough, we must preach it in the Power of the Holy Spirit. Many preachers don’t have the time to declare God’s Word properly. The church wants them to be a counselor, an administrator, and a superstar. Where the pastor decides to be all that the church demands he has forfeited being a prophet. I long for the day when the church and the preacher gain a passion for preaching again.

 
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Posted by on March 28, 2006 in Church Helps

 

"We Preach A Living Christ"

By OKpreacher

Acts 4:1-2, “The priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the people. They were greatly disturbed because the apostles where teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead.”

We preach a living Christ. This is the foundation upon which the gospel is built. How do we know that Jesus is God’s Son? God raised Jesus from the dead. How do we know that our sins were forgiven on the cross? God raised Jesus from the dead. How do we know that those who believe in Christ will be saved? God raised Jesus from the dead. How do we know that even though we die, we will be raised into new life in Christ? God raised Jesus from the dead. The Good News of the gospel is that from death God has cause life. Not only was sin defeated at the cross, but death was defeated in that tomb when God raise Christ from the dead. Who has God the Father chosen for mankind to put their faith in? His Son, Jesus Christ whom He raised from the dead.. We killed Him through our sins, but God raised Him from the dead. He is alive and He is Lord. Therefore let’s remember we trust in and preach a living Christ.

 
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Posted by on March 21, 2006 in theology

 

Thou Shalt Love Thy T.V.?

(I hope you enjoy the sarcasm of this article and are challenged by the main point. Don’t allow T.V. to control your life. There are better things to do as a family than always watching T.V. – OKpreacher)


Channel 23
By: Michael Pearl

A modern Psalm taken from “The New International Unchristian Perversion.”

“The TV is my shepherd, I shall not want anything else. It maketh me to lie down on the sofa. It leadeth me away from the Scripture. It destroys my soul. It leadeth me in the paths of sex and violence for the sponsors sake, Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will enjoy the evil, for blood and sex they excite me. It’s cable and remote they comfort me. It prepares a commercial before me in the presence of my children. It anoints my head with humanism, My coveting runneth over. Surely laziness and ignorance shall follow my family all the days of our lives, and we shall dwell in the house watching TV forever.”

But don’t worry parents, as you know the TV doesn’t have any influence on the children of parents who don’t want it to influence them. That’s why the sponsors only advertise products you have already decided to buy.

 
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Posted by on March 11, 2006 in Fun

 

Purpose Drive Life Declaration

Today I am stepping across the line. I’m tired of waffling and I’m finished with wavering, I’ve made my choice, the verdict is in, and my decision is irrevocable. I’m going God’s way. There’s no turning back now!

I will live the rest of my life serving God’s purposes with God’s people on God’s planet for God’s glory. I will use my life to celebrate his presence, cultivate his character, participate in his family, demonstrate his love, and communicate his Word.

Since my past has been forgiven, and I have a purpose for living, and a home awaiting in heaven, I refuse to waste any more time or energy on shallow living, petty thinking, trivial talking, thoughtless doing, useless regretting, hurtful resenting, or faithless worrying. Instead I will magnify God, grow to maturity, serve in ministry, and fulfill my mission in the membership of his family.

Because this life is preparation for the next, I will value worship over wealth, “we” over “me,” character over comfort, service over status, and people over possessions, position, and pleasures. I know what matters most, and I’ll give it all I’ve got. I’ll do the best I can with what I have for Jesus Christ today.

I won’t be captivated by culture, manipulated by critics, motivated by praise, frustrated by problems, debilitated by temptation, or intimidated by the devil. I’ll keep running my race with my eyes on the goal, not the sidelines or those running by me. When times get tough, and I get tired, I won’t back up, back off, back down, back out, or backslide. I’ll just keep moving forward by God’s grace. I’m Spirit-led, purpose-driven, and mission-focused, so I cannot be bought, I will not be compromised, and I shall not quit until I finish the race.

I’m a trophy of God’s amazing grace, so I will be gracious to everyone, grateful for every day, and generous with everything God entrusts to me.

To my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I say, “However, whenever, wherever, and whatever you ask me to do, my answer in advance is yes! Wherever you lead and whatever the cost I’m ready. Anytime. Anywhere. Anyway. Whatever it takes, Lord; whatever it takes! I want to be used by you in such a way, that on that final day I’ll hear you say, ‘Well done, thou good and faithful one. Come on in, and let the eternal party begin!'”

Purpose Driven Website

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2006 in Church Helps

 

The Church – A Place to Heal

By Okpreacher

John 5:3-4, “Within these lay a multitude of the sick-blind, lame, and paralyzed-waiting for the moving of the water, because an angel would go down into the pool from time to time and stir up the water. Then the first one who got in after the water was stirred up recovered from whatever ailment he had.”


I have read this story many times and had never really considered why so many people that were sick, lame, blind, and paralyzed where there. They were there because they were looking for healing. The pool had been a place of healing and they wanted to be there the next time it was stirred up so they could be healed. What else would you expect if you have a place of healing? Shouldn’t it be open to those who need it most? Many times I have been to a doctor’s office and every time it was a place where sick people were welcomed. Why? What else would you expect from a person who has been trained in helping sick people get well? It seems obvious to me that if you have help for the hurting then the hurting should be allowed to come and get the help.

Unfortunately, the church today, which is to reflect the nature of the Great Physician, isn’t accepting patients anymore. To be accepted in most church now you need to look healthy and act healthy. The problem with most churches is they don’t want people with problems and therefore they miss out on the power of Christ to bring healing to these people. Not only that, but when a church decides to only reach out to the rich and healthy instead of the hurting and sick, they have rejected the mission of Christ. Christ came for the sick and brought healing. He came for the hurting and brought life. He came for the sinful and brought forgiveness. So shouldn’t the church door be open and ready to receive the hurting and sick? So let’s follow Christ and be a place of healing.

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2006 in Church Helps

 

"The Lord’s Will Was Last"

By: Bro. D

Acts 21:14 – Since he would not be persuaded, we stopped talking and simply said, “The Lord’s will be done!”

This is the last statement in the dialogue between Paul and the Christians at Caesarea. It had been revealed by the Holy Spirit that Paul would be put in prison if he went to Jerusalem. So they were trying to talk Paul out of going. It seemed like the correct thing to do. If you knew someone was in harm’s way, wouldn’t you do all you could to get them out of the way? Paul wouldn’t change his course and the last statement they made was, “The Lord’s will be done!” Aren’t you surprised like I am that this was the last statement instead of the first? After all wasn’t it Christ who prayed in the garden, “Not my will, but Your (Father God’s) will be done.” Yet it was the last statement made and I believe that in the lives of many Christians today it is still the last statement made. We think we know what is best for our own lives and we skip the truth of Proverbs 3:5, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding.” Many are still relying on their own understanding and therefore they complain and argue about everything that doesn’t happen just the way they think it should. There is no place in our lives for “The Lord’s will be done!” Instead, we live by “Our wills be done!” Thank God Paul didn’t surrender to them. Like the time Jesus rebuked Peter with the words, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me because you’re not thinking about God’s concerns, but man’s.” So Paul could have said to the Christians here, “You have missed what God wants to do in and through my life, because you are more concerned about my safety than about God’s will for me.” What they were doing seemed right, but it was wrong. They weren’t focused on “The Lord’s will be done!” Listen friend, the Christian life isn’t lived for safety and comfort; we live for the will of the Lord. Stop trusting in your owning understanding and return to the place where you can say above everything else, “The Lord’s will be done!”

(PS – The picture is called “Gethsemane’s Prayer” by Brian Jekel and you can get it at Christ Centered Art)

 
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Posted by on March 6, 2006 in Uncategorized

 

The Holy Spirit and His Church


(Found this article and I hope it stirs you like it stirred my heart.)
by Samuel Chadwick

The Church is the Body of Christ, and the Spirit is the Spirit of Christ. He fills the Body, directs its movements, controls its members, inspires its wisdom, supplies it’s strength. He guides into truth, sanctifies its agents, and empowers for witnessing. The Spirit has never abdicated His authority nor relegated His power. Neither Pope nor Parliament, neither Conference nor Council is supreme in the Church of Christ. The Church that is man-managed instead of God-governed is doomed to failure. A ministry that is College-trained but not Spirit-filled works no miracles. The Church that multiplies committees and neglects prayer may be fussy, noisy, enterprising, but it labors in vain and spends its strength for nought. It is possible to excel in mechanics and fail in dynamic. There is a superabundance of machinery; what is wanting is power. To run an organization needs no God. Man can supply the energy, enterprise, and enthusiasm for things human. The real work of a Church depends upon the power of the Spirit. The Presence of the Spirit is vital and central to the work of the Church. Nothing else avails. Apart from Him, wisdom becomes folly, and strength weakness. The Church is called to be a “spiritual house” and a holy priesthood. Only spiritual people can be its “living stones,” and only the Spirit-filled its priests.

The Church always fails at the point of self-confidence. When the Church is run on the same lines as a circus, there may be crowds, but there is no Shekinah. That is why prayer is the test of faith and the secret of power. The Spirit of God travails in the prayer-life of the soul. Miracles are the direct work of His power, and without miracles the Church cannot live. The carnal can argue, but it is the Spirit of God that convicts. Education can civilize, but it is being born of the Spirit that saves. The energy of the flesh can run bazaars, organize amusements, and raise millions; but it is the presence of the Holy Spirit that makes a Temple of the Living God. The root-trouble of the present distress is that the Church has more faith in the world and in the flesh than in the Holy Ghost, and things will get no better till we get back to His realized presence and power. The breath of the four winds would turn death into life and dry bones into mighty armies, but it only comes by PRAYER!

 
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Posted by on March 3, 2006 in theology

 
 
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