Sunday, June 29, 2014

Hearing God, Through Circumstances

You are going through this for a reason. Which may have nothing to do with you.

Trials and Tribulations will come. Bad things DO happen to good People. Your walk as a Child of God, will NOT be, all Roses and Ice Cream. Why? Perhaps one of the most obvious reason is this..
"But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren."{Luke 22: 32}
James tells us this...

James 1:
1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.

2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
Wait....Did he just say count it all joy? Yes. Yes he did. He said call it all joy when trials and tribulations come into your life. Why?
3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.

4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

7 For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.

8 A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

9 Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted:

10 But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away.

11 For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falleth, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways.

12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.
Another thing you need to keep in mind is this...
13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:

14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

16 Do not err, my beloved brethren.
You know the Story. Job had everything. Job lost everything. Money, Property, Family, Friends, and lastly, his very Health. Talk about Trials and Tribulations? The Story goes on that Job was always Faithful and never Cursed God. Not only did he receive all he lost, but many times more. And, we are STILL talking about him to this very day.

Did the devil ask to tempt the Drunk? The Prostitute? Did he say he wanted to tempt the King? The Leader of the Synagogue? No. He wanted some poor, average, everyday guy named Job. Why? God said "that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil." He was a Child of God. Before we could receive the Spirit. That's saying something. He knew God well, and God loved him. Therefore the devil hated him. It was not God who was testing his Faith. It was the Circumstances that Job found himself in that tested his Faith.

Look at Peter. The only other one in history to walk on water. The one Jesus told was the rock on which He would build His church.

Matthew 16:
18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
This is one of the most powerful Saints to ever live.

But this did not protect him from Trials and Tribulations on his way of getting to this position. I would have loved to see Peter's face when he and Jesus was sitting around and Jesus said to him this...

Luke 22:
31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:

32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.
You know the story. Jesus told Peter that Peter would deny any knowledge or association with Jesus three times before the Rooster crowed three times. On the third, Jesus looked at Peter, and Peter ran away.

One of the best examples, in a lot of ways, is Paul. Paul was Saul before he was Converted. Equal to Hitler in every way. Then Jesus appeared before him and asked him to follow Him. He said "Yes," and became Paul. So great a Saint that HE wrote a lot of the New Testament that we read today. Did he have Trials and Tribulations? I guess you could say that.

Put in prison over and over. Faced death over and over. Received 39 lashes from the Jews 5 times. Beaten with rods 3 times. Stoned one time. Shipwrecked 3 times. Spent a day and night in the Sea. Often hungry and thirsty, cold and naked. I guess you could say he had some Trials and Tribulations. You can find Paul explaining this in 2 Corinthians 11.

You see, no matter what was going on in the negative sense to Paul, his first concern was always the Church. Was always God and His Will. What all these have in common is this. In the middle of their Trials and Tribulations, in the middle of their "negative Circumstance" they never lost sight of the goal. They never lost Faith. They understood, that if they did not choose to forsake God, and His Will, God would never forsake them. They did not respond to the Trials and Tribulations by the flesh. But by their Spirit.

Job received much more than he lost. Peter became the Rock on which Jesus said He would build His Church, and Paul, wrote a lot of the New Testament. However, none of these things are worthy to be compared to that of which awaits us in Heaven.

Truth Faith is not being Religious. It not about going to Church once a week and hearing God's Word, singing Hymns, and going home to live as you will. True Faith is not simply following the Traditions of Men, but having a one on one relationship with God Himself. With Jesus. Allowing the Holy Spirit to guide you in all things.

Doing the Will of God. Being a Sower of the Seed. A Shower of The Way. A Teller of Truth. Once you become a Child of God, it is up to you to follow Jesus or not. It is up to you to allow the Spirit to guide you or not. Do not think for a second that God doesn't know who you are. Do not think for a second, that you can not accomplish whatever it is that God instructs you to do. Do not think for a second that you can not overcome the Trials and Tribulations that may come into your life. Make no mistake about it, they WILL come. However, do not think of a second, that it is God who is sending them.

Truth is, if you are doing God's Will, God is on your side. If you are lead by the Spirit, the Spirit is with you. If you are following Jesus, Jesus is with you. If God be with you, who can be against you? Who can succeed in stopping you from doing what God has Ordained you to do? Truth is, no one can. Nothing can. There is simply nothing greater than God. While you are living for Him, and doing His Will, there is no longer anything or anyone, greater than YOU.

Trials and Tribulations will come. Negative Circumstances will occur in your Life. Jesus himself told us this. Rejoice and be glad when they do, for in these times, is when God is closest to you. He may even be Speaking to you in the midst of them. Preparing you for something greater. Trust in Him. Rely on Him. Never lose Faith. Never respond to these things in the flesh. But remain in the Spirit. Allow God to show you the way through.

It may be as simple as this. Once you come through it, you can then help someone else that just started. How can a Man with two legs, help a Man with none, learn the best way to live without them? You get the point? How can one who can see, help a Blind person live daily Blind. Sometimes, the negative Circumstance, the Trial and Tribulations you have to go through, have nothing to do with you at all.

Think Jesus. Look what He went through. None of that had anything to do with Him. The Mocking, Stripping, Beating, the Nailing to the Cross? Death? The Grave? Hell? That had nothing to do with Him. He went through all that, for YOU.

Next time we will be discussing how God can and does speak to you through the Advice and Counsel of your fellow Brothers and Sisters in Christ.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Hearing God, The Holy Spirit

Through the inner still, small voice of Holy Spirit.


First, to fully understand how this works, you must first understand, who the Holy Spirit is. The Holy Spirit, in some translations, the Holy Ghost, is not a spook. He is not a concept. Nor an Idea. The Holy Spirit is a very real Person.

Everybody who becomes a Child of God, gets the Concept and Idea. You accept Jesus's Sacrifice for you. His blood for your blood. His suffering for your suffering. His death, that you may live. Then the Holy Spirit comes and Adopts you into the Family of God. Jesus said..
"And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;"{John 14: 16}
Oh, ain't that nice? It's a beautiful Concept. We will morn when Jesus goes away, but we should not, because another will come and we can cry on His shoulder, and He will comfort us. But that's not it. In the very next verse, Jesus said this..
"Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you."{John 14: 17}
A little bit later Jesus told us, that we need not worry. Why?
"But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."{John 14: 26}
Again, what a beautiful Concept. What a great Idea this is. We no longer have to learn from the World, we now have a new Teacher that will Teach us all things. However, to fully understand the Reality, you must fully understand who the Holy Spirit actually is.

Genesis 1:
1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

2 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 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." When there was yet nothing, The Holy Spirit was there. Then a little bit later in Genesis...
26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
"And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness" In the original language, the word "our" means three or more. We are created in the imagine of God. We have our Mind. Our knowledge and wisdom, Will and emotions. Fashioned after God the Father. Our Body. Fashioned after the flesh of God, Jesus, Our Spirit. Who we really are, the thing that lives on. Fashioned after the Holy Spirit. We are three, yet one.

But wait, it doesn't say Jesus was there. Really?
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."{John 1: 1}
A little bit later...
"And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth."{John 1: 14}
So God, The Word, {Which became Flesh, Jesus} and the Spirit, were there in the Beginning and have always been. Then to fully understand who the Holy Spirit is, we need to go back to John 14..
18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.
He said "I" shall come to you. He is already there? Of course. So what He is telling them, is that the Holy Spirit is Him, He is God. Three yet one. That when the Flesh dies, and He goes to be with the Father, the Spirit, who never dies, will come and dwell in us.
19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.

20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
Again, "I" in you. Not some spook. "I." Jesus. The Holy Spirit is equal to Jesus. He IS Jesus. Jesus IS God. Are you following?
21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?

23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
Read that again. "If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and WE will come unto him, and make OUR abode with him." What is He saying? Remember, OUR means three or more. Jesus said WE will make OUR abode with him. The very real person Jesus, the very real person the Holy Spirit, and even God Himself, will live IN us.

Now you can fully appreciate this Passage..
"Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world."{1 John 4: 4}
Now you can understand this Passage..

1 Corinthians 6:
19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.
Once you say the Prayer of Salvation, once you ask God to set you free from the Laws of Sin and Dead, the old you, the Body, dies. You are dead. You are then transformed into a new Creature where the real you, the Spirit you, is now in total control. Second, The Holy Spirit comes down from Heaven and dwells in you, with you. You now have the power of Faith. You are now going to live on long after the Body dies. Who is the Holy Spirit?? Think about that.

So here you are a Child of God, with the Holy Spirit in you. Do you NOT think that The Holy Spirit cannot talk to you. Guide you. Keep you safe?

We all have that little voice in our heads. Most of us anyway. We know Right from Wrong. We know when we should or should not do, this or that. Some call it a Conscience. As a Child of God, you can call it the Holy Spirit. You could, and you would be accurate, call it God Himself.

Ever been going about you day, when all of a sudden you hear that little voice, "Stop." Or something like, "Go there." "Talk to this Person." Something to this effect? You may have no idea why, but can I suggest to you, do it? You do not have to understand it at the time. You may never understand it. But it may just change someone's life. It may even change yours.

If we have God Himself, the Alpha and Omega, The Beginning and the End, the Creator of all that Is, Was, and ever Will Be, living inside of us, He knows better than we. Does He not?
"And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left."{Isaiah 30: 21}
God will never leave you nor forsake you. He is with you always. Unless YOU chose to walk away. Unless YOU chose not to listen. Unless YOU chose to put the cares of this world over His Will. His Plan and Purpose for your life. He is with you always. Be with Him always. Trust in Him to know better than you. Learn to listen to that voice. Understand what that Voice is. Who that voice is. He is there for you.

Next time we will talk about how God can and does, speak to us through Circumstances.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Hearing God, Dreams and Visions

Dreams and Visions can be powerful things.



Joseph had Dreams, and interpreted Pharaoh's Dream. Daniel had Dreams, and interpreted Nebuchadnezzar's Dreams. Both Joseph and Daniel received great power and position through this process.

Samuel had his first vision as a young boy. God told him that Judgment was coming upon Eli and his Sons.. The young Samuel was Faithful shared the information as he had seen. So God continued to speak to Samuel through the rest of his life. {1 Samuel 3}

It was in a dream that God gave Solomon the famous offer: "Ask what you wish Me to give you." Solomon chose Wisdom above all.{1 Kings 3:5}

Isaiah had a Dream or Vision that depicted Jesus Himself...

Isaiah 53:
1 Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed?

2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and theLord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

8 He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.

9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.

10 Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.

11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.

12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
Then we have Peter's Vision on the Roof top. Where God told him that the Gospel would Save the Non-Jews as well as the Jews. It dealt with Food, but that was the point of the Vision.

Acts 10:9-15
9 On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour:

10 And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance,

11 And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending upon him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth:

12 Wherein were all manner of fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air.

13 And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat.

14 But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean.

15 And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.

16 This was done thrice: and the vessel was received up again into heaven.

17 Now while Peter doubted in himself what this vision which he had seen should mean, behold, the men which were sent from Cornelius had made enquiry for Simon's house, and stood before the gate,

18 And called, and asked whether Simon, which was surnamed Peter, were lodged there.

19 While Peter thought on the vision, the Spirit said unto him, Behold, three men seek thee.

20 Arise therefore, and get thee down, and go with them, doubting nothing: for I have sent them.

21 Then Peter went down to the men which were sent unto him from Cornelius; and said, Behold, I am he whom ye seek: what is the cause wherefore ye are come?

22 And they said, Cornelius the centurion, a just man, and one that feareth God, and of good report among all the nation of the Jews, was warned from God by an holy angel to send for thee into his house, and to hear words of thee.

23 Then called he them in, and lodged them. And on the morrow Peter went away with them, and certain brethren from Joppa accompanied him.

24 And the morrow after they entered into Caesarea. And Cornelius waited for them, and he had called together his kinsmen and near friends.

25 And as Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him, and fell down at his feet, and worshipped him.

26 But Peter took him up, saying, Stand up; I myself also am a man.

27 And as he talked with him, he went in, and found many that were come together.

28 And he said unto them, Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath shewed me that I should not call any man common or unclean.
Again, this is just a short listing of the Dreams and Visions that are in The Word. God can and does use Dreams and Visions often. Now keep in mind, they are not always pleasant Dreams or Visions. Pilate's Wife had a Nightmare and prompted her to send an urgent message to the Governor encouraging him to free Jesus. She saw that Jesus was innocent and that Pilate should have nothing to do with Him.{Matthew 27:19} Then Of course, we have the entire Book of Revelations written by John after haven seen the End Times.

Do not make a mistake here and think that Dreams and Visions have ceased. When Elihu Rebukes Job,,,
"For God speaks in one way, and in two, though man does not perceive it. In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls on men, while they slumber on their beds, then he opens the ears of men and terrifies them with warnings, that he may turn man aside from his deed and conceal pride from a man; he Keeps back his soul from the pit, his life from perishing by the sword."{Job 33: 14-18}
In Joel,,,
"And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:"{Joel 2:28}
And also in Acts
"And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:"{Acts 2:17}
I love Dreams. I always have. I toyed with the idea of getting into Dream Research in my younger years. I've studied the Field. There definitely seems to be a Dream / Reality Connection. Think about it. If you are running in your Dream, say a Nightmare, you wake up, what is going on? Your heart is racing and you are sweating. Why? Because in your mind, you were Running. It was as real to you in the Dream as it would be in Reality. If you are falling? You bounce on the Bed when you wake up. Why? Because in your mind, you were falling.

Some in the Field say that this is where Deja Vu comes from. The word Deja Vu is French, which means "already seen." Some say it is because we have Dreamed it prior. We all have Memories of a Vacation we couldn't have been on, or a Party we never went to, or met someone for the first time and felt like we've known them all our lives. Why? What is it? Is it messages that we are missing.

Why do most people forget their Dreams as soon as they wake? This is why a lot of people keep Dream Journals. This way, they can record their Dream as soon as they wake so they do not forget it. Could it be as Elihu warned about? Dreams are God speaking to us, "though man does not perceive it?" At any rate, I believe that if God gives you a Vision or Dream, and wants you to do something with it, you will remember.

Now of course God needs to do this far less than He did before. Why? Because, just like Angels Visiting and God Speaking to us directly and Audibly, we have His Word right here. If we want to know what God says or thinks about this or that, we can look here. The Bible. Does this mean God will never use a Dream or a Vision to talk to you? No. Of course not. He is God. He can do whatever He chooses. He will do what He knows will best get your attention. If it is Dreams, and or Visions, you will have them.

Next time we will be discussing how God can, and does, speak to us through that inner Voice. The Holy Spirit Himself. After all, Jesus did tell us,,,
"But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." {John 14:26}
Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Hearing God, Angels

Through Angels

Two angels came to, and Judged Sodom as worthy of total destruction, having not found any faithful but Lot and his Family. At the evening and in the morning these Angels hastened Lot and his Family to escape for their lives, and not to look behind.

Sarah's Servant Hagar was visited by an Angel twice. Angels met Jacob, on the way after Laban, and blessed his daughters. An angel touched Elijah twice and said to him, "Arise and eat." Gabriel touched Daniel and talked with him, teaching him, empowering him.

An Angel appeared to Zacharias to deliver a message that he will have a son, what his name will be John. Angel Gabriel visited the Virgin Mary, and Joseph, about Jesus. The Angel of the Lord came upon Shepherds, to bring them "good tidings of great joy"{Luke 2:10} It was an Angel that told the Marys Jesus has risen. It was an Angel that opened the Prison in Acts. An Angel that visited Paul the night the Ship he was on was about to crash, and Ministered to him, comforted him, and told him not to fear. Of course, it was an Angel that showed John the things he wrote in Revelations.

These are just some examples. The Bible is filled with Visitations by Heavenly Beings, known as Angels. We also get this warning
"Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares."{Hebrews 13:2}
Angels are very real. They are created beings, just like us. Just like us, they were Created by God Himself. In Revelations, John fell to the feet of the Angel. The Angel said this. 
"See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God."{Revelations 22: 9}
As a matter of fact, in Psalms we see a Song of Comfort, for all those that have become a Child of God, through the acceptance of Jesus, have Angels to watch over them.

Psalm 91:
1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

2 I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.

4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

5 Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;

6 Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.

7 A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.

8 Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.

9 Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;

10 There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.

11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.

15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.

16 With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.
This was what Satan was using while attempting to Tempt Jesus, when he said this...
 "If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God."{Matthew 4: 6-7}
Angels can and do, appear to The Children of God, in three most predominate ways. As they are, Heavenly Creatures. As we are, fellow Man. Invisible, merely a voice. But in all instances, they are coming as mere Messengers of God to His Children, and a vessel of Wrath for the World, and those who fail to Repent their Sin.

There are many reports of "possible" visitation from Angels today. There are even a couple of Videos I have seen where someone will appear from nowhere, rescue or help someone in need, then disappear. The latest I can think of, was the one on the News about a Suffer that was rescued from Drowning. He remembers a man saving him, but when he came to on the Beach, no one was there.

I think I told this story before. I was just Saved. I bought a Car from a Coworker. The Car was what they call a POS?? Or a Lemon. It broke down. "Somehow" I coasted through this busy intersection into a Gas Station on the other side. There I stood, Hood up, looking at the Engine, {Which is about the extent of my Auto Mechanic knowledge} when I felt this presence behind me.

I turned and saw a man standing there looking at my engine too. "Won't start uh?" No, I was just bored, and decided to sit here and look at the engine, you idiot. Of course it won't start you Moron. That was what I was thinking, but what I said was "Nope." Then he asked me a question out of the blue. "So you a Christian?" To my surprise, I didn't hesitate. "Yup." "So I have to help you then. Don't I?"

He walks over to a truck pulling this brand new Shiny Red Sports Car. He unloads it, and puts my broken down piece of, uh, junk, car on the carrier, and asked "Where do you need to go?" Long story short, He got me where I needed to go and drove off. Was he an Angel? A Good Samaritan? I have no idea. What about the guy that rescued the Surfer? I have no idea. Could they have been? I repeat "Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares."{Hebrews 13:2}

Can God send Angels to His Children today? Of course He can. God is the same yesterday, today, and forever more. Just understand that though Angels are more powerful then we, they are still merely Servants of God and are not to be Worshiped.

Also keep in mind this Verse...
"And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him."{Revelation 12: 9}
Keep this in mind as well. Satan, IS an Angel. He was the First Angel. The Son of the Morning. The fairest of all. If Satan was to appear before us today, as he truly is, many would fall at his feet, thinking he was Jesus Himself. So be careful if someone shows up claiming to be an Angel sent from God.

Next time we will be discussing Dreams and Visions. Another way Angels can appear before us. God can speak to us, and we can know all things necessary to carry out God plan and purpose in our lives.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Hearing God, Audibly

In an Audible Sense



Does God speak to His Children Audibly? We are going to look at this in depth, over the next few times we come together. Hearing God. God speaks to us in many ways. The question is not "does He," but rather "are you listening?" Are you prepared to hear? God can, and does, speak to His Children in many ways. We will be looking at,,,

Audibly.
Through Angels.
Through Dreams and Visions.
Through the inner still, small voice of Holy Spirit.
Through Circumstances.
Through the Advice and Counsel of your fellow Brothers and Sisters in Christ.
Through a simple Sense of Knowing. {Think inner peace.}
Most predominantly, through His Word.

God spoke to Adam and Eve. God spoke to Cain. God Spoke to Noah. God spoke to Moses. God spoke Saul. People heard the Voice of God at Jesus's Baptism. People heard God's voice when He was talking with Saul.

Does God speak Audibly? Will you hear God Verbally speak your name? Well, the Definition of Impossible, is it has never been done. Improbable is it has been done once, but not likely to repeat. Possible but not likely? Been done more than once, but not often. Normal? It's done all the time. So is it impossible for God to speak Directly to you? Nope. Improbable? Nope. Possible, yet unlikely? Perhaps. But the bigger question here, would be, What would you do, if He did?

Imagine this. Here you are, you are minding your own business, going about your daily routine, and all of a sudden, this Voice, as Thunder, this completely unmistakable voice, comes and speaks your name. What would you do?

Genesis 3:
8 And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.

9 And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?

10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.

11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?

12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.

13 And the Lord God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.

14 And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:

15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;

18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;

19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.
The First Sin. Was God really "walking" in the Garden, as you and I would, calling Adam's Name? Yup. Everything God created until that point was Holy and Pure. There was no Sin until that time. God could come and go whenever He chose to. However, keep this in mind, look what happened after. The World changed.

Genesis 4:
6 And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?

7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.

8 And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.

9 And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper?

10 And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground.

11 And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother's blood from thy hand;

12 When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.
The First Murder. Pretty significant, would you not say? Look what happened after. The beginning of the Ten Commandments. Thou shall not Murder, nor shall you Convent. Look what happened after. Again, the World changed.

Genesis 6:
12 And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.

13 And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.

14 Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shalt pitch it within and without with pitch.
God had enough. From Adam and Eve, which led to Cain and Abel, to "all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth." God was about to wipe us all out. However, ONE Faithful Man, Noah, stood out. Because of him, Mankind was not utterly destroyed. Look what happened after. The World as was, was no more.

Genesis 8:
15 And God spake unto Noah, saying,

16 Go forth of the ark, thou, and thy wife, and thy sons, and thy sons' wives with thee.

17 Bring forth with thee every living thing that is with thee, of all flesh, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth; that they may breed abundantly in the earth, and be fruitful, and multiply upon the earth.
A New beginning. God's Grace and Mercy on full display. The World changed. A new hope. A new beginning. Which of course we messed up. But the World changed.

Exodus 33:
11 And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle.
"The Lord spake unto Moses face to face" Think about this one. "As a man speaketh unto his friend." Think God walking through the Garden. Think Jacob Wrestling with God in Genesis 32. What happened after God Spoke to Moses? A People freed. The Ten Commandments. The World changed.

Acts 9:
3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:

4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?

5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.

6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.

7 And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.
So? Who was Saul? Saul, as HE described himself, a "Chief Sinner." A man equal to Hitler. A man who met God, and became Paul. What happened? The World changed. Who do you think wrote a lot of the New Testament that we read today? Yup. Paul.

Can God speak to us Audibly? Yup. Can He show up in a Physical Sense? Yup. Question is, what would you do? Hide from Him? Wrestle with Him? Follow what He tells you to do? Just keep in mind, whenever God chooses to come and Speak Audibly to someone He chooses, He is asking them to change the World.

From His Word and the examples we have, I do not really see God showing up in your living-room and saying something like, "Hey Bro, how's it going? I was Bored so I figured I would drop by." Could He? I suppose. He IS God. But it is more likely that if He did decide to drop by and see you, He is asking you to Change the World and the World following you being obedient will never be the same again. Are you SURE you would really want God to speak to you in an Audible sense? Think about it.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Life Is More Than A Series Of Problems To Be Solved

If you concentrate on simply solving problems, you may miss the Journey.



A phrase I like to use is "We are all Captains of our own Ships, traveling through this mystical, magically, journey, called Life." Meaning, that we are all responsible for the choices we make. We will all arrive at the destination we are traveling towards. Just like any other Ship, if you set a course to Bombay, you will end up in Bombay. Japan? Same. So on and so forth. If you set your course towards Heaven, that is were you will end up. If not??? You get the point. 

Many people either do not have a course set, they simply drift around, being thrown to and fro by the waves. Or, they do have it set, and allow the waves to take president over the Journey itself. Now do not get me wrong, some waves need to be dealt with. No doubt about it. But is that all your Journey is? Dealing with wave of issues and problems after wave?

Think about this. God Created all that is. God Created you. God gave you everything He Created. God Loves you so, He had to come and die for you, so that you may Live forever with Him. Do you really think that God wants you to merely exist to solve Problem after Problem? No. He wants you to have a Long and Happy Life. He wants you to have fun, be happy, and enjoy this gift He gave you.

Remember, Jesus told us,,
"The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. "{John 10:10} 
A little bit later, He said this,, 
"Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full."{John 16:24}
Think about this, you are a Father. Or a Mother. You love your Children, right? You will sacrifice things you may want, to give to them. Children that grow up in single family homes of modest means, I was one, may not get the hottest "Must Have Toy" this year. But we will get something we really want. We may even get that one. Perhaps a bit later when the price comes down. But those Parents that do this well, the Kids never actually know that they are poor. They may understand the concept, but they do not really care.

However, now God, the Creator of all that is, was, and ever will be, is now your Daddy. Think about that. You are that Rich Brat. You have access to any and everything God has. Which is any and everything. Jesus said this,,

Matthew 7:
7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:

8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

9 Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?

10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?

11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?
When you become Adopted into the Family of God, and He becomes for you "Abba Father," He doesn't want you turning into some kind of drone or something. He doesn't set you down and throw a Book of Rules and Regulation at you, telling you, "Do this or else." That is NOT what to Bible is. That is NOT His way. It may be Religion, but it is not God.

Oh, by the way? Work is not evil..

Ecclesiastes 2:
24 There is nothing better for a man, than that he should eat and drink, and that he should make his soul enjoy good in his labour. This also I saw, that it was from the hand of God.

25 For who can eat, or who else can hasten hereunto, more than I?

26 For God giveth to a man that is good in his sight wisdom, and knowledge, and joy: but to the sinner he giveth travail, to gather and to heap up, that he may give to him that is good before God. This also is vanity and vexation of spirit.
Just a side note, according to The Word 
 "For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat." {2 Thessalonians 3:10} 
Work can be a thing of Joy. I know, I know, but that's why there is that old saying, "find something you love to do, do that, and you will never work a day in your life." 

God wants you to be Happy. In his letter to Timothy, Paul wrote this warning to give to the Rich.
1 Timothy 6:
17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;

18 That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate;

19 Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.
God is not against the Rich. A little bit earlier, Paul declared this,,
10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.

12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

13 I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession;

14 That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:

15 Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords;

16 Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.
Jesus tells us that Life is much more than merely making money to supply needs. He said this.
"Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?" {Matthew 6:25} 
He tells us that we should, above all else,,
"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." {Matthew 6:33-34}
Trials and Tribulations will come. Worries and Hardship, may come. But you do not need to fear these things. You do not even need to fully understand them. Look at Job. God did not solve Job’s problems right away. It lasted a long time. Why? He allowed Job to grow in Grace and Trust through his many trials. Look at the answer Jesus gave to Peter.
"And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren."{Luke 22:31-32}
Trails and Tribulations are not something to be feared, but understood, that they are meant to help you. Help you to grow. Help you to help others. To bring you closer to God Himself. But these are not Life itself. Life is to be enjoyed and celebrated. You are a Child of God. You are Blessed beyond measure. As a Child of God, you need not worry.

Philippians 4:
6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Enjoy life. Have fun. Do not waste it away worrying. Do not waste it away on the quest for Money. Do not waste it away thinking you need to solve all your, and others, Problems and Hardships. Understand who you are. Understand what that means. Go gave you this life to be lived and to be happy. Enjoy the moments. Every moment. Give Him thanks always, for all things. Simply? Live.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Excomunication

A lesson in Harshness.

We just wrapped up a series entitled "Running on Empty." In the second part, Emotionally, I said this...


"So how do you keep the right mind. One, if you have negative people in your life, that you do not need to deal with, then simply don't. I know this sounds harsh. But if you have someone in your life that is constantly draining you, you need to move on. They will be miserable with or without you. You are not responsible for their Happiness. 

Something else that may seem harsh? The Word tells us that we should remove them from the Body of Christ."


Simply put, Excommunication is not just justified, but is commanded in The Word. Why? Because that person WILL cause drama, strife, and may even lead to division.
 "Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind." {Philippians 2:2}
 Also,,,
"Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel," {Philippians 1:27} 
This is kinda hard to do, if you have certain people stirring the pot so to speak, every time you get together. This is why it is so very important to rid the Body of Christ of these folks. Why it is so important to remove them. This is also why it is so very important that you have nothing to do with them either.

2 Timothy 3:16-17
16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
Simply put, anyone that goes contrary to this, The Word of God, and is creating strife among the Congregation, they are not of God. We're not talking about ignorance. Nor making mistakes. If one is found ignorant or making mistakes, they should be taught the correct way to do this, or that. Taught what God says about it. The Truth According to God. If they go they own way, let them go. Move on. Rid yourself of their drama. Of their problems. Do not allow them to infect you.

Life is not a merely a series of problems to be solved. We will talk about this more in depth next time. But Jesus said, 
"The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." {John 10:10}
Paul, in his letter to the Romans, said this..
"I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them." {Romans 16:17}
In,,,

2 Thessalonians 3:
6 Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us.

7 For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not ourselves disorderly among you;

8 Neither did we eat any man's bread for nought; but wrought with labour and travail night and day, that we might not be chargeable to any of you:

9 Not because we have not power, but to make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us.

10 For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.

11 For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.

12 Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread.

13 But ye, brethren, be not weary in well doing.

14 And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed.
Paul was extremely angry when he wrote to the Church that was at Corinth.

1 Corinthians 5:1-13
1 It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father's wife.

2 And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.

3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,

4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,

5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

6 Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?

7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:

8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:

10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world.

11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within?

13 But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.
These are not people that have nothing to do with the Church or with Jesus. "It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you" Paul even said, what they were doing was even worse than what the Gentiles were doing. "And such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles" Think about that. He is writing to Church Folks here. People that claim Jesus as Lord, yet, commit such things at the same time.

John warned not to even let these types people into your own Home. 
"I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them." {2 John 1:10}
The reason is simple. They will drain you. They will corrupt you. They will create problems, not only for you, but for the body of Christ itself. Jesus told us this...

Matthew 18:15-17
15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.

16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.

17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
You see, Excommunication is not only for the Body of Christ, for you, it is also for them. In this same passage, Peter asked Jesus how many times do we forgive our Brothers? Jesus answered
"I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven." {Matthew 18:22} 
So Excommunication is not meant to be permanent. But used as a form or correction. However, if they will not hear, accept, and change, to fall inline with the Truth, THEN "let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican." THEN "ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us." THEN "you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat."

It really is simple. Although is sounds Harsh, it is for the good of everyone involved. Excommunication is a form of protection. It is a form of correction. It is commanded by God Himself. If the one that has been Excommunicated Repents and asks to come back into the Fold, then they are to be forgiven and welcomed back. After all, 
" I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance." {Luke 15:7}
 If there is rejoicing in Heaven over one Sinner Repenting, how much more shall we take joy, when we receive a lost Brother or Sister, back into the Family?

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Our Required Work

Special Guest, Max Lucado

Suppose you gave me a gift. Let's say you presented me with a new tie. I take it out of the box and examine it. I say thank you and then reach for my wallet. "Now how much do I owe you?" I ask.

You think I am kidding. "It's a gift," you say. "You don't need to pay me."

"Oh, I understand," I respond, but then show I don't by asking, "Could I write you a check?"

You're stunned. "I don't want you to pay me. I want you to accept the gift."

"Oh, I see," I respond. "Perhaps I could do some work around your house in exchange for the tie?"

"You just don't get it, do you?" you state firmly. "I want to give this to you. It is a present. You can't buy a present."

"Oh, forgive me," I hasten. "Perhaps if I promised to purchase you a tie in return."

By this time you're insulted. In trying to buy your gift I have degraded your grace. I have robbed you of the joy of giving.

How often we rob God.

Have you ever considered what an insult it is to God when we try to pay him for his goodness? God loves a cheerful giver because he is a cheerful giver. If we, who are evil, enjoy giving gifts, how much more does he? If we, who are human, are offended when people want to turn our gift into a bribe, how much more is God?

Spend some moments slowly reading the response of Jesus to their question, "What are the things God wants us to do?" (John 6:28).

Jesus replied: "The work God wants you to do is this ..."

Can't you see the people lean closer, their minds racing? "What is the work he wants us to do? Pray more? Give more? Study? Travel? Memorize the Torah? What is the work he wants?" Sly is this scheme of Satan. Rather than lead us away from grace, he causes us to question grace or to earn it ... and in the end we never even know it.

What is it, then, that God wants us to do? What is the work he seeks? Just believe. Believe the One he sent. "The work God wants you to do is this: Believe the One he sent."

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Running On Empty, Spiritually

What does the Sower of the Seed need?


I remember this like it was Yesterday. Here I am, just recently Saved, working, minding my own business, when a Professional Boxer friend of mine came to me and said, "I want to know about God." I thought to myself. OK. Cool. Then he said something that I just didn't get. "James told me to come see you."

Now for those of you who may not know, James was one of two Men that were very instrumental in leading me on my Spiritual Quest. I remember thinking to myself, "ME???? James sent you to ME??? Wait. What? Here is a guy that has been going to Church. He reads The Word. He told me about Jesus. He told me what I needed to do to be Saved. Why is he sending you to ME??? Who am I??"

What I said was, "Well, OK." We set a date for him to come to my home. The day came, and here we are. I thought I would simply start with the basics. All I knew anyway. He asked about the Ten Commandments. I found that I did not even know where to find them. Seriously. I had no clue. Here I am in the Kitchen trying to come up with them. While he was sitting in the Living room waiting for me to bring drinks and a snack.

Long story short, I found that day, to the lost, the simple things are not so simple. The "Basics," are not so Basic. What I thought was my infantile understanding of God, Jesus, and The Word, was actually, at that point in time, the most powerful and important knowledge in this young man's life.

A bit later, a week or so, he came to me again and told me he accepted Christ as his Savior, on top of a Mountain, at like Five in the Morning. Point is, it was as much a learning experience for me as it was him. A day I will never forget. I was a Sower of the Seed? Yup. Even though I only had a couple of, what I thought were meaningless Seeds, A new Creature was born. A Sinner became a Saint. A lost person was Adopted into the Family of God. Because, even though a had so little, I still planted them.

However, none of this could have ever happen if I had none. Seriously. Look at this in the Natural. If you go out and dig your Garden, if you have no Seeds, what is the point? Why are you wasting your time? You can dig all day. You can lay a foundation all day. You can plan out all day. But if you have no Seeds, nothing will ever grow. Your Garden will be nothing but dirt.

Sad thing is this. Most people fall into one of two categories. When Jesus was talking about being a Sower of the Seed, He said this..

Matthew 13:
5 Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:

6 And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.

7 And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:
He explained it here..

Matthew 13:
20 But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it;

21 Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.

22 He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.
In other words, those that hear The Word receive it immediately, and with great joy. Why not? It's a brilliant story. It's the greatest Story ever told. God, loves us so much, that He laid down His Godhead, and came to Earth as a Baby, {Who doesn't love Babies?} and lived His Life walking among us. Teaching us good things. Showing us God Loved us so much He wants to Adopt us. Then Jesus suffering all He did for YOU. He died {Good news, you do not have to} so that you may Live. {You will never die}

They hear that Jesus said
"And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also." {John 14:3}
Who would not want to go to a place like Heaven?
"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away."{Revelation 21:4}
However, because that is as far as they go, they become Spiritually empty quickly. Someone comes up to them and says, "You are one of those? Tell me why I should accept this Jesus? Are you really that stupid?" ETC. They become offended and decide to reject that of which they heard, so they do not have to be ridiculed. They deny the Truth, and they accept the Lie.

Then there are those that receive it, but that is as far as they go. They do not take the time to fill up. To get to know what it all means. They love the Story, but then they leave that Spirit Filled Place called "Church," and they have messages from Bill Collectors. Their Power is shut off. They still have abusive people in their lives. They forget what they just heard. They mean well, but they let the "care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful." They go to Church and sing songs, then go Home and worry about Tomorrow. Instead of actually following what Jesus told us.
"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof."{Matthew 6:33-34}
In order to be a Productive Child of God, and to be able to grow in Faith, you must not let yourself become empty, Spiritually. How do you do this? Read His Word. Fellowship with Brothers and Sisters. Pray. Spend time with God. Peter tells us that as a Brother or Sister in Christ, as a Child of God, we must always be ready to answer those that may come to us. Think my Boxer Friend. 
"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:" {1 Peter 3:15}
Paul tells Timothy 
"Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine."{2 Timothy 4:2}
Remember, in order to give, you must have something first. I know Pastors that run on empty Spiritually. You can always tell. You can feel it. Oh, they may get up every Sunday and stand in the Pulpit. They may put on their best Suit. They may have worked hard preparing what they wanted to talk about. But if they have not taken the time to Pray, Read, Spend time with God, They are Spiritually Empty. There is no power in their words. No power in the Message. They are simply going through the motions.

Think about this, look at all those in the Word, that God spoke to directly. Noah, He was the most Faithful at the time, Saved Mankind and a lot of God's Creation. Moses, saved God's Chosen People. Ananias, Healed Saul and helped in the Conversion to Paul. So on. God can and will speak to you directly and audibly, keep in mind though, when He does, He wants you to change the World. God will also, and most likely, talk to you in various ways.

Most predominantly through His Word.
Through the inner still, small voice of Holy Spirit.
Through the advice and counsel of your fellow Brothers and Sisters in Christ.
Through Dreams.
Through Visions.
Through Angels.
Through Circumstances.
Through a simple sense of knowing. {Think inner peace.}

Jesus tells us that we need to always be ready as well. 
"Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come."
Jesus is telling us to be Faithful always 
"Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh."{Matthew 24:42,44}
Luke 12:
35 Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning;

36 And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately.

37 Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them.

38 And if he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants.
If you allow yourself to run on empty, you will not be prepared. As we discussed before, running on empty Physically can make you sick, and even kill you. Running on empty Emotionally can also make you sick, and can also kill you. Running on Empty Spiritually, will drain you both Physically and Emotionally, and make you completely unproductive as a Child of God, and may even miss God speaking to you, and you will not be ready when He comes. Never forget to take time to recharge, Physically, Emotionally, and Spiritually, and always be ready.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}