Monday, November 28 2016
Based on a sermon preached 11/27/2016
Matthew 26:69-75 KJV
 Now Peter sat without in the palace: and a damsel came unto him, saying, Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee.
 But he denied before them all, saying, I know not what thou sayest.
 And when he was gone out into the porch, another maid saw him, and said unto them that were there, This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth.
 And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man.
 And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee.
 Then began he to curse and to swear, saying , I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew.
 And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.
Peter is one of the great characters of the Biblical story. It is thought that he may have been the oldest of the disciples when he began his journey with Jesus. He was outspoken, spontaneous and within the inner circle of Jesus Christ.
It is Matthew 26 that details the passover meal, the garden of Gethsemane, the betrayal and apprehension of Jesus. It further documents Jesus being taken before the High Priest. The Bible tells us that the Jewish scribes and elders gathered and that Peter followed from afar. They accused Jesus of saying that He would destroy the temple and build it in three days.
We can read of the exchange between Jesus and the High Priest in...
Matthew 26:62-68 NKJV
 And the high priest arose and said to Him, "Do You answer nothing? What is it these men testify against You?"
 But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest answered and said to Him, "I put You under oath by the living God: Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!"
 Jesus said to him, "It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven."
 Then the high priest tore his clothes, saying, "He has spoken blasphemy! What further need do we have of witnesses? Look, now you have heard His blasphemy!
 What do you think?" They answered and said, "He is deserving of death."
 Then they spat in His face and beat Him; and others struck Him with the palms of their hands,
 saying, "Prophesy to us, Christ! Who is the one who struck You?"
As Jesus was being persecuted by the Jewish Religious elite, a young servant girl, saw Peter in the palace and said that he had been with Jesus. He denied ever being with Jesus.
Peter moved onto the porch and once again someone recognized him as a disciple of Jesus. Once again, he denied ever being with Jesus.
For the third time, someone recognized Peter and accused him of being with Jesus. Again, Peter denied it, but even more he became angry and began to cuss as he denied Jesus for the final time.
As prophesied by Jesus in Matthew 26:34, a cock crowed with Peter's third denial. It was at that moment that something happened. It may seem just another thought in the mind of Peter or an insignificant turn of events, but I will tell you that it was a miraculous moment of grace.
The Bible simply says, "Peter remembered the word of Jesus." For Peter, the Word of Jesus brought conviction. He understood his sin and the Bible says that he wept bitterly.
It was David that said so many years before...
Psalm 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
The words of God can bring conviction. It tells us how to live a life pleasing to God. A holy life. But as we walk through our life there may be moments, days or even months that become challenging or even difficult. Perhaps, it may be in a moment of sin or disgrace that it seems we are chained by our our own choices that we remember the words of Jesus spoken to the women that was caught in the very act of adultery.
He famously tells her accusers, "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her."
It was the words of Jesus that convicted those that accused, but also his words that revealed his grace.
John 8:10-11 KJV
 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.
The power of His words changed a woman bound by sin in a moment and can do the same for us.
When we face the need for healing from sickness or addiction...if we will remember the words of Jesus...our faith will bring the healing that we desire.
Luke 4:18 KJV
 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
When we feel like we have the weight of the world upon us. It is the words of Jesus that make a difference...
Matthew 11:28-30 KJV
 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
When we have no direction and seek salvation. The words of Jesus will bring us peace...
Luke 19:10 KJV
 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.
When life seems to take away any hope. Jesus speaks to the hopeless...
John 14:1-3,6 KJV
 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so , I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
 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.
 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
The words of Jesus are powerful. They bring hope, joy and peace to the world. They are the very words of God.
When we study the Bible, we are able to plug into a power that is greater than doubt, faithlessness and discouragement. We plug into joy, peace and faith. When Peter remembered the words of Jesus, it changed him. Within a short time, he was preaching the sermon at the birth of the church starting a revival that continues today.
Monday, November 21 2016
Thankfulness is something more than being polite. We thank people because it is the right thing to do, but thanking God (also the right thing to do) has spiritual consequences. In our prayer closets, we are to thank God. It is a commandment:
1 Chronicles 16:8 Give thanks unto the Lord , call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people.
We are blessed through our obedience, but what are the results of our thanksgiving? The following list three things that happen when we are thankful:
1. We enter the presence of God
Psalm 100:4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
2. We bless God
Deuteronomy 8:10 When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the Lord thy God for the good land which he hath given thee.
3. We are in His will
1 Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
As a Christian, we should give thanksgiving everyday. I love the holiday of thanksgiving, but our thanking God has eternal and spiritual results. Being in His will is like jumping into a pool on the hottest day of the year. It is amazingly refreshing. In giving thanks, we also bless God and it gives an opportunity to enter into the presence of the Most High God. There is power in being thankful to God.
Thursday, November 17 2016
Christians love the promises of God. We should. I have a book that is a list the scriptures these promises. They document the blessings that God will give to His people. The Apostle Paul wrote to the church at Corinth:
2 Corinthians 1:20 For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.
The Living Bible says:
2 Corinthians 1:20 He carries out and fulfills all of God's promises, no matter how many of them there are; and we have told everyone how faithful he is, giving glory to his name.
What I find interesting about the promises of God is that they are on His time. We hear the promise of God and expect an immediate result, but the Bible does not bear that out. For example, Abraham was given the promise of a child. It was a wondrous promise that was a miracle because his wife was elderly. When Abraham's wife, Sarah, became impatient she sent her servant into Abraham and Hagar conceived and gave birth to a son, Ishmael. He was not the promise child. The Bible gives us insight into what happens next.
Genesis 16:16 And Abram was fourscore and six years old, when Hagar bare Ishmael to Abram.
The very next scripture begins the 17th chapter of Genesis.
Genesis 17:1 And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the Lord appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect.
It appears that God did not speak to Abraham (Abram) for 13 years. He carried that promise for many years without a another word from God.
Joseph was sold into slavery at 17 years old and emerged from prison at 30. The promise as a teenage was still true for him for 13 years.
The point of the blog is simple....God's promises are true, but they are going to be according His time and not ours. If it has been awhile and you still have not seen the promise fulfilled does not mean that it will not happen. It means its not time for you to receive it. God is faithful and what he says will come true.
Luke 11:10-13 KJV
 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
 If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?
 Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?
 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?
Monday, November 07 2016
While I was at the gym this morning, I listened to preaching. This is not unusual for me. I often listen to preaching because I want to use that time effectively for my spiritual life and my physical body. On my phone, I have an app for Revival Radio. When I began to listen to the sermon being preached, I recognized it immediately. It is a sermon entitled Trophies in Hell by Pastor TG McNeeley. My connection with Pastor McNeeley is non-existent. I have never met him, but when I was growing up in the 1980's the sermon he preached on Trophies in Hell was spoken of quite often. It has only been in the last few years that I have listened to the sermon.
As Christians, we love to hear sermons of about grace, mercy and the love of God. These topics are essential and bring hope. As a pastor, I want to preach the hope of Jesus Christ, but we first must understand that we are all sinners. We must hear sermons that are convicting. There are scriptures in the Bible that explain the responsibility of the man of God. Ezekiel wrote:
Ezekiel 33:6-9 KJV
 But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand.
 So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.
 When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man , thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.
 Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.
This scripture places great responsibility upon the leadership of the church to sound the warning of the enemy. This includes preaching about the cost of discipleship (the "hard stuff" about living for God) and hell.
Pastor McNeeley's sermon is such a sermon. It is a warning from the watchman to the church. It may have been preached many years ago, but it is essential for every Christian to grasp this powerful Word of God. Please pray that God would speak to you through this sermon and click on the video here. (it is on Youtube, but it is only the audio of the sermon).