Are You Standing in the Gap?

Irvington Bible Baptist ChurchThe difference in a contribution and total commitment is usually the difference in failure and success. A chicken and a hog were walking past a church building one day when they noticed the Sunday morning sermon posted on the outside bulletin board, “Helping the Poor. ” They walked a ways when the chicken suddenly came across with a suggestion. “Say, Brother Hog, why don’t we give all the poor people a nice breakfast of ham and eggs?” The hog thought a moment and replied, “That’s all right for you to say because for you it is only a contribution, but for me, it’s total commitment!”

The Lord is looking for some people to be committed.  In Ezekiel 22 we find the Jewish people in exile to Babylon.  Ezekiel’s message to them is focusing on the fall of Jerusalem and the cause of the fall.  As we read Chapter 22, we see that the sins that they were guilty of included:

  • Murder
  • Disrespect of Parents
  • Sexual Perversion
  • Contract Murder
  • Forgetting the Lord

It is plain to see our society, Continue reading Are You Standing in the Gap?

What Makes You Weak?

No-one likes to admit a weakness.  We go to great lengths to hide our weaknesses.  When interviewing people for a new position or job, one of the most likely questions that will be asked is, what are your strengths?  What talents or abilities will you bring to our company?  Most people rather enjoy answering this question.  It gives them the opportunity to brag on themselves, and even though most people would deny it, they love talking about themselves.  In most conversations that you find yourself in, the other party isn’t listening to what you are saying; they are just simply waiting for their turn to talk and usually about themselves or some experience that they have had.  On the other hand, probably the most disliked question in an interview is, What are your weaknesses?  Who wants to talk about weaknesses in an interview?  In an interview, you are attempting to put your best foot forward, not talk about where you are weak!  Most people have covered up their weaknesses so well and often, that they forget that they even have any.  For instance, just yesterday, I was reminded of how easily a small weakness can completely dominate your actions.  Yesterday I was moving a gas grill down some steps (with help) and somehow managed to twist and pull in exactly the wrong way, and pulled a muscle or something in my lower back.  Today, I can hardly stand up straight.  Before that happened I was just like everyone else, thinking that I didn’t have a weakness to worry about.

In this podcast, we are going to look at a few things that can Continue reading What Makes You Weak?

Extreme Makeover

A simple internet search for the term “Extreme Makeover” will net you 4.3 million results.  That is a lot of results!  You will see everything from weight loss programs to make up videos.  There was a program on ABC titled Extreme Makeover and was about plastic surgery.  My favorite, however, was Extreme Makeover Home Edition which also aired on ABC.  In this show, they provided home improvements or complete replacements of homesIrvington Bible Baptist Church for less fortunate families.  They would send the family on a paid 7day vacation, while volunteers remodeled their home.  The best part was always the great reveal at the end.  All the volunteers would gather around with the family, the home is obscured by a big bus, and everyone would be yelling “move that bus!” revealing the finished home.

I work in the cleaning industry, and at times customers expect us to Continue reading Extreme Makeover

Four Faithful Fundamentals of the Faith

Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip. – Hebrews 2:1

Nothing is easier than drifting downstream.  No-one ever drifts upstream, but rather downstream, In other words, you drift away not towards your intended goals.  To drift downstream just sit back and relax, don’t put any effort forth and you will
start to drift.  You may not even realize that you have started to drift until it’s too late.  You are always either moving forward or backward; you are never standing still.

We all know Christians that have drifted away, they are all around us, people who used to attend church, used to read their Bible, used to do a lot of things, but have drifted away.  Are you starting to drift away?  If so, then grab the oars of the Fundamentals of the Faith to get back on track.

You need to learn the Fundamentals for any endeavor that you wish to be successful.  No matter what it is; In Football Continue reading Four Faithful Fundamentals of the Faith

The Four Incredible Hidden Treasures

The subject of hidden treasure is fascinating; it has prompted numerous books, movies, theories and actual treasure hunting expeditions.  Two of the most popular hidden treasures are:

  1. The Knights Templar Treasure
  2. Captain Kidd’s Buried Treasure

The Knights Templar’s have been surrounded by a shroud of mystery for years.  They were founded in 1118 during the Crusades state of Jerusalem by a French Knight by the name of Hugues De Payne.  De Payne started the order with eight fellow Knights.  They were quartered at the Temple Mount by King Baldwin II.  The original function of the Knights Templar was to protect pilgrims as they traveled the dangerous road from the Port of Jaffa to Jerusalem.  They were the most formidable fighting force in “Christendom”, and they also possessed immense wealth and political power.

On October 13, 1307 (Friday the 13th) the King of France, Phillip the Fair, along with the Pope, Clement V conspired to destroy the Templars.  Theories for their reasoning abounds; however, three stand out: Continue reading The Four Incredible Hidden Treasures

Fear Factor

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

– 2 Timothy 1:7

Fear Factor was a T.V. show that aired on NBC from 2001 to 2006 that pitted contestants against each other in a 

variety of stunts (usually 3) to win a prize of $50,000.  The show was divided into three segments or Stunts:

  • First segment was usually a physical challenge, such as testing the contestants fear of heights by suspending them from a helicopter while collecting flags or something of that sort.
  • The Second segment would be a Mental challenge, which could be either:
    • an eating challenge, where the contestant would be required to eat something that would generally be considered as gross or disgusting.  Live bugs were often used in this segment.
    • or an Animal challenge, where the contestant would be either partially or completely covered by an animal, such as, snakes, ants, spiders, rats or something similar.
  • The Third segment would usually be an extreme stunt, such as strapping into a car and jumping a ramp or something like that.

The episode would end with a winner and the statement “Evidently, Fear is not a factor for you”.

My hope is that at the conclusion of this Podcast, that you can say that Fear is not a factor for you.

If you allow it too, Fear will control you;  The use of fear as a control technique has proven to be very successful.  People will stand in line volunteering to give up any and all of their rights if fear is successfully employed.

If you are living in the Spirit of Fear, you are not exercising the Spirit of God in your life.  2 Timothy 1:7 tells us that God didn’t give us the Spirit of Fear:

  • Isaiah 43:1
  • John 14:27
  • John 16:33

So who does?

Continue reading Fear Factor

Don’t just sit there, Get Prepared!

If you don’t prepare, you will permit a pack of problems.

 

When Catherine and I were first married, we decided along with my brother to go on a canoeing/camping trip. It started as a canoeing trip, but we also wanted to camp. What we wanted was a two-day canoe trip where we could camp half way.  The issue that arose was that the canoe outfitter did not have any such trip.  So, we made our own; We received permission from the outfitter to pick a spot along the creek bank that we could camp.  It was accessible by car, so we set up camp first and then embarked on our canoe “adventure.”  We only canoed downstream for an hour or so, then set up camp.  We thought that we were prepared to camp, but as it turns out not so much.  It first became clear that we didn’t thoroughly prepare when we realized that we didn’t properly “prepare” the female portion of our trip that there would not be any facilities.  We had to make our own.  Next, we were confronted with the task of finding suitable wood to create a fire, so that we could keep warm and cook our meal.  David (my brother) found an area not too far away that we could get some firewood.  It was an area that had been cut down previously and had small twigs as well as some bigger pieces that we could burn.  We had prepared ourselves for the task of cutting wood, by bringing along a hatchet.  So, there we were, tents up, a fire started, all was going well.  Then, for a reason that I am still (26 yrs. later) not sure of, Catherine somehow stepped (barefooted) right into Continue reading Don’t just sit there, Get Prepared!

A New Hope

The title of the first Star Wars movie released in 1977.  It opens up with the “good guys” being overtaken by the Evil Empire.  The Empire had just developed a weapon that no one could combat.  There was No Hope of surviving the destruction that this weapon  (Death Star) would bring.

But then you see, that there is Hope. There is a way to defeat their adversary.  There was a plan delivered and a way to obtain the victory.  They now had:

A New Hope!

This film as all others is based on one of only a handful full of different themes that are found in the Bible:

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. Ecclesiastes 1:9

In this podcast we are looking at one of these themes:

  • The Empire is represented by the god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4).  The weapon is sin;  In the first four chapters of Romans, we see Man’s need for Salvation.  That man is a sinner and under the wrath of God.  We’ve Also seen that man can do nothing to battle this weapon.

Then God’s plan shows up!  In Romans 4 we see how that God will impute his righteousness onto us by Continue reading A New Hope

Can you hear me now?

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches;

(Revelation 2:7)

This phrase “If any man have ears to hear, let him Hear” is only spoken eight times by the Lord Jesus Christ during his earthly ministry.  This phrase is also used eight times in the book of Revelation, Seven times by Jesus and once by the Apostle John.  All seven times, Jesus says “He that hath ears to hear, let him hear what the spirit saith, unto the churches”..

We should pay attention to what the Spirit says to us; according to John 14:16-26, the Spirit will teach us all things, and bring to remembrance the Lord’s Words.

But we have to listen!  Jesus often spoke and taught using parables, using what they knew, to explain to explain what they did not know.  For instance, Jesus taught his disciples with 7 different parables in Matthew chapter 13:

  1. The Parable of the Sower

  2. The Parable of The Wheat and the Tares

  3. The Parable of The Mustard Seed

  4. The Parable of The Leaven

  5. The Parable of The Hidden Treasure

  6. The Parable of The Pearl of Great Price

  7. The Parable of The Drag Net.

In this podcast, we are going to take a look at the parable of the sower as found in Luke 8:5-15.  We will take notice of the Four Continue reading Can you hear me now?