Guilty about not reading your Bible?

July 12th, 2010

Did you know that reading your Bible can easily become a dead work, and that’s exactly what it is to many Christians - yet they don’t even realize it! Don’t get me wrong, it is important to spend time in the Word. That is how we grow and our minds are transformed as we allow God’s Word to soak into our spirits and change the way we see things. But when we’re trying to punch a spiritual time clock by reading our Bible, that’s where the problem comes in. God does not love you any more or any less, based on how much you read your Bible. There are people who are said to be Bible experts, yet they don’t even know Christ.

Do you feel spiritually attacked after not reading your Bible for a few days? Then you’ve got a problem. Why? Because your basing your righteousness and relationship with God upon your performance (you see reading your Bible as “doing your duty”). Reading your Bible should never be about doing your duty or putting in your time, but about seeking to have your mind and heart renewed and transformed by the Words of God! I can tell you that it is not the fact that you’ve went a few days without reading your Bible which is allowing the spiritual attacks, it is the guilt that you feel for not reading your Bible which opens the door to the attacks.

When you go for a few days without spending time in God’s Word, you shouldn’t be feeling guilty, you should be feeling hungry. Sometimes though, we do have to “force feed” ourselves the Word to get our fires started, but even that is not the same as reading your Bible out of religious obligation.

Reading your Bible has a purpose - a VERY important purpose!! You aren’t going to become all that God has made you to be, or receive all the good things that He wants you to have, if your mind is not transformed by the Word. Reading your Bible has an important purpose, but it is not a duty or means that your relationship with God is judged by. It is what you receive out of the Word that transforms your life and takes your relationship with God to the next level.

Reading your Bible just because you feel like it’s your duty or obligation as a Christian, is a dead work. Reading your Bible because you want to receive what is written on those pages is what it’s all about.

Called to a single life?

June 25th, 2010

Every time I hear somebody who is single tell me that God must have called them to singleness, I cringe. Do I believe that it is possible to be called to a single life, dedicated to serving the Lord? Yes! Jesus made that clear. But for most of us, I believe we are designed to live a married life. God’s Word tells us that, “It is not good for a man to be alone.” (see Genesis 2:18) We are told to, “Let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.” (see 1 Corinthians 7:2) God made men and women to be an incredible blessing to each other. He made us “male and female”, and honors marriage.

So what about those who have been called to a life of singleness? I believe God is practical, and what He does, He does for a reason; He doesn’t just call somebody to give up a married life for no reason. I believe scripture is clear as to the reason for being called to a single life, and it is for ministry purposes (1 Corinthians 7:32-34). Some ministry callings require more of a person than others, and there are special callings that require a single person; somebody who doesn’t have a family that will be neglected as they follow the call of God on their life. I believe that when there is a genuine “call of singleness” on a person’s life, there’s an incredible ministry that God wants them to walk in. Have you been called to such an incredible ministry? If not, then you’re probably not called to be single. Can you choose to be single? Absolutely. But I believe those genuinely called to a life of singleness are going to have a ministry calling that is incredible, and there will be much fruit as a result.

Jesus refused to cast a demon out!

June 5th, 2010

When you read the passage where Jesus tells us that it is unfit to cast the children’s bread before dogs, has it ever occurred to you that Jesus actually refused to cast a demon out of people who were not in covenant with God? Of course, once He saw her faith in Him, that changed everything. I just think that is really interesting that Jesus would refuse to deal with a demon in somebody, just because they were not in covenant with God. He said that it was unfit to take the children’s bread (deliverance) and give it to dogs (those outside covenant with God). It was UNFIT, NOT RIGHT, NOT MADE FOR… get the point?

But besides that, why would we want to cast demons out of non-believers when the cards are clearly stacked against such a practice? First of all, the demons have not been disarmed, because the person’s sins have not been forgiven. Secondly, why do you think Jesus warned against casting demons out of people if they were going to come back with 7 even more evil spirits? Do we really think it’s wise to run a non-believer through deliverance, given that kind of a warning?

And finally, do you honestly know of somebody who claims to cast demons out of non-believers only, and has a lot of genuine success and fruit from it in their ministry? I don’t know of a single minister who does such a thing, and I don’t think you do either.

Make our prayers a blessing to those we are praying for

August 1st, 2009

We hear so much about prayer, and how it is a blessing to be prayed over or prayed for. It is truly a gift given when we take tiem our of our day to pray for people such as those serving in the military, but is that all we can do? Yes and no. Although prayer is something that is our only way to help people, the Bible tells us that the prayer of the righteous man avails much:

“Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” (James 5:16)

Let’s face it, some people’s prayers seem to be heard more than others. Let’s do all those that we are praying for a huge favor, and get into that category of those righteous men and women who’s prayers avails much. This is not a push into legalism, it is a challenge to put God first in our lives, and seek a deeper and more genuine living relationship with our savior. The closer we are to Him, and the more we put Him first in our lives, the more effective our prayers will be, and the more we can bless those that we are praying for.

Don’t feel bad if you’re prayers don’t seem to be answered though; this is not to lay a burden on anybody, or give them an excuse to beat up on themselves. There are times when I’ve prayed and haven’t seen any results, but other times I see very powerful results right before my eyes. To help tune and hone our prayer lives, I recommend visiting GreatBibleStudy.com and under the audio sermons (in the archives), find the teaching series on Keys to an Effective Prayer Life. They are so powerful and will change your prayer life forever if you let them!

Even persecution is not the Will of God

July 28th, 2009

I preach about how God is a good Father, who desires good things for His children. I also preach about how we are expected to endure persecution for the sake of the gospel. Did you know that even persecution is not the Will of God for His children? That would be saying that God, the good and loving Father that He is, desires to see His children beaten and killed brutally here on earth. Persecution is rather a natural result of our attempt to cooperate with God to bring His will here on earth. It’s not God’s will that we suffer, but persecution is something that we, like Jesus, must endure for the sake of the kingdom.

Unloving spirits

March 27th, 2009

Unloving spirits are huge; they cause all sorts of problems in so many lives. Addictions? Likely unloving spirits are involved. Lust? Pornography? There’s a good chance unloving spirits are the root.

What does an unloving spirit do? It’s job is to make the person feel not loved. An unloving spirit can hinder a person’s ability to perceive and receive love properly, which starves them of an essential need that God has designed inside each one of us. We all need to be able to freely receive the love of God in our lives. The root to many addictions is the need to be loved, and by over indulging in something, we attempt to fulfill that need. Since we can’t fulfill it, we keep indulging but never find true fulfillment. That is why a person can wake up one day and find themselves weighing 500lbs. They are trying to fill a need that cannot be met with food, but since they don’t know how to get their need met, they are doing the best they can to meet the need in the natural.

Rejection can open the door to unloving spirits. Unloving and rejection spirits are very closely related. Unloving spirits make the way for lust, perversion, pornography, and so forth (as a means to find love).

What unloving spirits basically do is deprive a person of love. They make it difficult to freely receive love from others and God into your spirit. They may be there due to defense mechanisms which are intended to help block further harm, but at the same time it blocks love from being received into the person’s system.

The link between love and faith

January 26th, 2009

Many of us would love to have more faith, but don’t know how to go about getting it. God’s Word outlines very specific guidelines that will cause our faith to grow. For example, faith behinds where the will of God is known, thus validating the verse which tells us that faith comes by hearing God’s Word (which contains His will).

But did you know that there is a linkage between love and faith? Becoming established in the love of God, and freely receiving that love is a huge key to faith. Let’s take the opposite of faith, which is fear, and look at it’s root. The root of fear is a lack of love. If a child doesn’t know that his parents love him, then there will be fear that the parent may abandon him or not be looking after his best interest. God’s Word tells us that he who fears has not been made perfect in love:

1 John 4:18, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”

So if love drives out all fear, then love feeds the opposite of fear, which is faith. If we knew without a shadow of doubt that God loved us enough to care for our well-being, our provision, health, finances, etc., then faith would rise up in our soul, and trusting God would be a synch!

Therefore, being able to receive God’s love plays a big part in our level of faith. Many times, there are strongholds, bondages, and roadblocks that must be torn down and removed before a person can fully receive God’s love. That is why the ministry of deliverance and inner healing, along with receiving God’s Word, are so important. They remove the roadblocks that stand in the way of our ability to freely receive the things of God. The Bible also tells us that we should all be rooted and grounded and understand the love of God, so that we can receive the fullness of God in our lives:

Ephesians 3:17-19, “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.”

Do aborted babies go to heaven?

January 1st, 2009

This is a question on the minds of many women who have had an abortion. I hope to ease some of your burden by showing you that in God’s Word, unborn babies are not guilty of sin, and therefore are not sent to hell. Besides, wouldn’t it be unlike a loving heavenly Father to send an unborn baby to hell for eternity? It goes against His nature of justice.

Romans 9:11, “For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil…”

Isaiah 7:16, “For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good…”

And there you have it! I believe that these passages make it clear that the unborn child is not capable or guilty of committing sin.

Now please don’t use this as an excuse to have an abortion. It is seen as taking an innocent life according to the Bible (God’s Word is clear about the unborn person having a spirit). Women who undergo abortions pay dearly for it through the bondage, emotional damage, and demons that they have opened themselves up to.

But for those who have already had an abortion, it is comforting to know that your baby is in heaven with Jesus.

The poison of religious art

December 29th, 2008

The Holy Spirit has been speaking to me recently about religious art, and it’s terrible affects on how we perceive God. I am convinced that the saying is true concerning a picture saying a thousand words. You can tell a lot about somebody just by looking at their picture, the expression on their face, etc. Many pieces of religious art, particularly of Jesus, are giving many people today a terrible picture of the nature of God.

When I look upon many pieces of religious art, particularly in the Catholic church, it gives me a very unsettling feeling. To my spirit, it speaks of a cold, religious Jesus, who is all about religion, rules and would be angry with me if I ever messed up. What does this do to a person? It causes them to draw away from an intimate relationship with Jesus, instead of run to Him. Who wants an intimate relationship with a cold, religious, and angry God? Not me!

Then I see some other pieces of “relationship” art, that speaks of a loving Jesus who is personal, merciful, and kind. This is the type of art that truly paints an accurate picture of the loving nature of Jesus! What kind of Jesus would you rather have a relationship with? A cold religious one, as portrayed in most religious art? Or a loving, personal, and merciful Jesus?

How we perceive the nature of God in our minds, is perhaps the biggest element that will either cause our faith and love for God to soar, or drain the energy right out of us, and instill fear and distance in our minds from Christ.

Give God something to work with!

November 20th, 2008

A lot of us love to receive Rhema from God concerning a passage in His Word. But did you know that if you don’t know that scripture in the first place, that God doesn’t have anything to give you Rhema about? A sermon could be written just on how important it is for us to be rooted and grounded in the Word of God. When we know the Word, and then a situation arises in our life, the Holy Spirit can then bring to our remembrance a passage in scripture, and give us revelation on how it applies to our situation. That’s Rhema, and it is so powerful when the Holy Spirit does that!

God is a GOOD God, and He desires to give us words, revelations, and Rhema based on His Word. But if we aren’t knowledgeable of His Word, then He has nothing to work with. This is yet another very good reason why we need to be spending time each day in the Word. I recommend reading at least a few chapters in your Bible every day!

I pray that as you dig into His Word, a spirit of revelation (the Holy Ghost!) opens your eyes that you may receive and understand, and receive Rhema from the Holy Spirit concerning the relevance of that scripture to your life today.

May God bless you!
Robert