Friday, February 24, 2012

Is Your All On The Altar

It became starkly evident that, "God offers peace, rest, joy, and life, but these can only come after the fire has fallen on the altar of sacrifice, the perfect sacrifice." So, in my mind, God is calling me and every soul who is seeking Him to come to the place where we become that perfect sacrifice. We must sacrifice our self-will, our dreams, our wants, our ambitions on the altar. Then and only then can He inspect it, and if found proper, consume it, and then let His Glorious Presence fill the altar."And as Mary proclaimed to the Gabriel, "Let it be unto me according to your Word!"Let us not fool ourselves in thinking that we can enjoy the blessings of God without the fire of God.
Only one thing pleased the Lord during the day of sacrifice, "a perfect offering on the altar." When it was proper and presented properly, 2 things were noted:

"It was an offering given to the LORD by fire very pleasing to the LORD."Lev 8

"Fire blazed forth from the LORD's presence and consumed the burnt offering and the fat on the altar. When the people saw all this, they shouted with joy and fell face down on the ground. " Lev 9

And when things were NOT done properly, death happens and He reminds us,

""This is what the LORD meant when he said, 'I will show myself holy among those who are near me. I will be glorified before all the people." Lev 10

And He continued to exhort His people regarding the demand for them to be something that He is,"After all, I, the LORD, am your God. You must be holy because I am holy. So do not defile yourselves...." Lev 11

From this we must conclude,

1) God wants to send fire on the earth (Jesus actually said the same thing, Luke 12).

2) He will only send it on a perfect sacrifice presented properly before Him. (we are to be the living sacrifice, Rom 12)

3) When we attempt at religion in our own way, it will bring death. (old way brings death, 2 Cor 3)

4) If someone is near Him, Holiness WILL be shown through them. (display a new holy nature, Eph 4)

The old Elisha Hoffman hymn speaks of this issue clearly,


You have longed for sweet peace,

And for faith to increase,

And have earnestly, fervently prayed;

But you cannot have rest,

Or be perfectly blest,

Until all on the altar is laid.


Is your all on the altar of sacrifice laid?

Your heart, does the Spirit control?

You can only be blest,

And have peace and sweet rest,

As you yield Him your body and soul.
Would you walk with the Lord,

In the light of His Word,

And have peace and contentment always?

You must do His sweet will,

To be free from all ill,

On the altar your all you must lay.

O we never can know

What the Lord will bestow

Of the blessings for which we have prayed,

Till our body and soul

He doth fully control,

And our all on the altar is laid.

Who can tell all the love

He will send from above,

And how happy our hearts will be made,

Of the fellowship sweet

We shall share at His feet,

When our all on the altar is laid.

By: Russell White

Monday, September 28, 2009

Highway of Holiness

While reading through the Bible this week, one verse stuck out to me:

“Because My people have forgotten Me, they have burned incense to worthless idols. And they have caused themselves to stumble in their ways from the ancient paths to walk in pathways and not on a highway.” Jeremiah 18:15

It is this part of the verse I want to highlight: “to walk in pathways and not on a highway”. In Proverbs 2 it is about the seductress who flatters with her words and her house leads down to death and her paths to the dead. The road of a Christian is a narrow road and we are to walk closely with each other so that we are not seduced into taken a side path. Many have been walking to close to the edge and because they are not in fellowship, have stumbled onto the darken paths.

The paths that lead off of the Highway are many: Prosperity, Sexual Sins, Pride and especially Religion, just to name a few. The path is lit by a counterfeit light that draws them away. They have no idea it will lead to death. They also hop from one path to another, whatever is the big crowd pleaser at the moment or what “Star” minister is hot at the moment. What happened to “deny yourself, take up your cross daily and follow Me”?

The Highway of Holiness is narrow because it is not for all! He who endures to the end shall be saved. The salvation is not a one time prayer and you are set for life. It is a daily, a moment by moment; walk with the Lord and with His people. Loving Him more than life itself and loving each other that we would lay down our lives. Jesus left us an example to live by: obedience.

Get out from the sway of the flesh, religion and the world. There is nothing in these that can prepare you for an eternity with God. There is nothing worth an eternity without God. Nothing. Repentance is a key that will open your heart to God. He sent His Son because He loved the world, but now that Jesus has come and gone, He loves only those who obey the Lord. Will you be counted on the Highway of Holiness? I pray that you will.

“If we say we have fellowship with Him and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the Truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and the Blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us for all sin.” 1John1:6-7

“A highway shall be there, and a road and it shall be called the Highway of Holiness. The unclean shall not pass over it, but it shall be for others. Whoever walks the road, although a fool shall not go astray? No lion shall be there, nor shall any ravenous beast go up on it; it shall not be found there. But the redeemed shall walk there, and the ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Zion with singing, with everlasting joy on their heads. They shall obtain joy and gladness and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.” Isaiah 35:8-10

Walking in His Light with you…MJ

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Who Do You Love

Hear what God is showing one of our teenagers:

1 John 2:15-17~

"Love not the world neither the things that are in the world. If any man loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life is not in the Father, but is of the world. And the world which will pass away and the lust thereof: but he who does the will of God abides in him forever."

If you have ever heard John Bevere's "Draw Near" sermon, you know he can preach some really good stuff. He talks about: appetite for the Lord, praying, and a lot of other things. But the thing that captures me the most is the part about: When your body is hungry, it will basically scream," I'M HUNGRY!!!" at you. But your soul won't. Now, if your soul is full from youthful lusts like TV, computer, and telephones, it will seem that your soul is whispering,"I am hungry." You will not hear it. Simple. Your appetite is not on the things of Christ, but of the world and what you feed on is what you will end up hungering for. If you feed on TV, or computer or other youthful lusts, you are hungry for the wrong thing. Paul clearly states that you cannot partake from the table of demons and the table of Christ. You will crave one or the other. As David’s words said,” As the deer pants for the water so my soul longs after thee.” But the question is do we long for him that much? If you want to empty yourself from selfish and lustful desires then follow 2 Timothy as it says: "Run away from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts. Then, you won't have those youthful lusts filling up all your time that you could have with the Lord."

Some more verses about youthful lust:

Ephesians 4:22-24~
Throw away your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which was corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Holy Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God, - truly righteous and holy.

God created you to be like him, so, why waste your time on the things of this world. He created us to stand out before all others, so why try and be like them and not like God. We might be persecuted, but let us stand through it all, that we might give all the glory to God.

Galatians 5:19-22~
When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

As I said before, God created you to be like him and not like the world. In the scriptures it says,” We were made to be in the world but not of it." So why would you want to waste precious time to be seeking the Lord by partying, drinking, and all those things of the sinful nature.

For Christ,


Thursday, August 6, 2009

Are You Hot, Cold, or Lukewarm

Revelation 3:15-16
By: Lauren White

"I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, I will vomit you out of my mouth.”

How do we become hot, cold, or lukewarm? We become hot by dying to ourselves or becoming closer and going deeper into him. We are cold when we drift away or don’t even try knowing him. And being lukewarm means you’re not getting closer and you’re not drifting. But it says “Because you are lukewarm, I will vomit you out of my mouth.” Vomiting is something that no one likes. But God says he will if you are lukewarm. He wants to give someone else the chance to live for him.

How do we become lukewarm? Distractions, television, computer, having cell phones. Those are just a couple of things to mention, but I could have a whole page of them. They are all around us and the only way not to become lukewarm is to die to yourself and live for Him. Stand out in the Crowd. It doesn’t matter if people think you are too religious for them. At least you believe in God, and not in an organized religion.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Big Change

Here is what God is speaking to one of our teenagers:

I am going to high school this year. It is going to be a big change for me. So many worldly people and things around me, conversations that are inappropriate, and everything else you could possibly imagine. I decided this year was going to be one that I would focus on GOD. This would help me to be a better person because I want to be the one that turns Live Oak High upside down! I want to be the one that when people look at me they can just see the love of Jesus in me! I know it is going to be challenging but I can do anything through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13) so I decided I would pick a person from the Bible that I could follow and they could be my example and that is Esther. I picked Esther because she was set apart from everyone else and just like the Bible says in Deut. 14:2 -We are to be set apart for the Lord God for he has chosen me from all the nations of the Earth to be his own special treasure. I also picked her because she was brave. She stood up for her people and I want to stand up for what I believe in. I shared this to the church and it went along to what we talked about. Starting with the parable of the farmer scattering seeds, which fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah, "When you hear what I say you will not understand, when you see what I do you will not comprehend. For the hearts of these people are hardened and their ears cannot hear, and their hearts cannot understand and they cannot turn to me and let me heal them." (Matthew 13:14-15) Just the same, Esther had to hear and listen for God and wait for him to tell her when the right time to enter to see the king was. If she would not have fasted and prayed to God for help, everything would have gone wrong. God is faithful and always will be! We just have to trust him.


Sunday, June 28, 2009

How Well Do You Paint?
Have you ever done any painting? If you have, you know that if you do a half-hearted job the paint will not last. I want to give you a picture of how I related painting to my foundation while on the Dominican Republic Mission Trip.
Luke 6: 48-49 says:" He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock. But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great."
The school building that we were painting is made of concrete walls. They are very close to the ocean and have had hurricanes come in and wash through that village. The scripture says the flood arose and beat against that house. If you look closely at the concrete walls you see holes and cracks that happen over time due to age and weather. It can also be due to not being kept up or maintained properly. What about our foundations, are they being maintained by staying the Word, praying, seeking fellowship with other Christians? If we neglect these things, then cracks and holes can start to appear. They may be small at first but over time, they can become large.
Several of us were painting outside the school building and I was standing with Lauren Jackson. She had a paintbrush and she was taking her brush and literally sticking it in the holes and cracks. As we were talking she said, “I am going to fill up these holes.” As she filled up the holes with paint, she would then put a layer of paint on top to smooth it out. As I have reflected upon what I observed, I thought about our foundations. How do we fill them up? Do we just put a top layer on for a temporary fix or do we really get determined to fill in every crack first. It is just so easy to do the “quick fix” and just paint over the undesirable area so on the surface it would appear everything is fine. Over time though the “quick fix” is not enough because if your foundation it not strong enough to weather the storms that come your way, you will be shaken. The Word says the house fell.
Well, you might ask, what could some of these flaws or cracks be? In Romans 1:29-32 it says, “being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; [they are] whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them." Galatians 5:19-21 says:" Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told [you] in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God."
Look what God says about the righteous judgment of God. He said we are deserving of death and we will not inherit the kingdom of God. If we allow our heart to get so hardened that we not only practice sin but also take pleasure in it, then we are living in the flesh and not being led by the Spirit. We will be judged. We will not inherit the kingdom of God. Hell is real. It is eternal, never ceasing. It is a fire that will never be quenched.
Galatians 5:24 says:" But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such, there is no law. And those [who are] Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires."
As I watched Lauren fill up the holes and cracks, I was thinking if we see something in our life that does not line up with the Word of God, then we need to take our paintbrush and fill it with the righteousness of God. Lauren was not just dabbing a little paint in the crack, she was taking that brush, coating it with a lot of paint, and then pressing the brush into the affected area making sure it was filled up completely. If there are areas in your life that need to be filled in, take it very serious. Do not just brush over it, get to the root. This takes effort. You have to press in, seek God with all your heart. God is serious, He hates sin. Fill in the cracks with love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. After you fill them in, coat it with prayer, reading the Word of God, having fellowship with other Christians.
This is how we grow. If we are not actively seeking God with all of our heart, we will start to have signs of neglect and over time, the cracks will appear. Do not allow yourself to get to that point. Allow God to minister healing to you.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Signs of Cares of the World that Choke Faith in God’s Word

Our topic last week was from 1 John 1, 2 where some church folk thought they were Christian because they “said” they were and not because of obedience to Jesus. Some years back we dealt with what is called the “say religion” where people confused attending a church gathering with Christianity. I read the passage some days earlier from our recent daily reading and felt we needed to revisit the topic. As we were praising God also impressed on me the passage from Mark 4:13. I wasn’t sure how it tied in with the topic, but it did.
In Mark 4:13 we see that the parable of the four seeds is the gateway to understanding all other parables. It is important to note that it addresses much of the error in the church today because not every heart remains obedient and may become disqualified for the Kingdom of Heaven. The first is when someone hears God’s Word and doesn’t understand it and it isn’t allowed to change the heart. The second is when the Word is readily received and the person didn’t realize that testing, trials and temptation are associated with the Word and the person quits believing. The third is when the Word is sown into a person’s heart, but competing worldly interests are allowed to takeover. There is no fruit to give evidence of the Word’s power and it is made ineffective. And lastly, the Word is sown into a heart of obedience where much fruit is grown.
Let’s look at Mark 4:18-19. I believe it pertains to how the Word of God is sown in America. Just the process of living with all our responsibilities to family, work and desire to move ahead we can forfeit the dependence of seeing God’s Word work for us.

(Mark 4:18-19 NKJV) ""Now these are the ones sown among thorns; they are the ones who hear the word, {19} "and the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful."

And in most church meetings there is no way of knowing if the cares of the world have taken over because there is little revealed about their practices at home. But I think John gives us some sure signs to look for. Read the following passages.

1 John 1:5-8 (NKJV)
{5} This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.
{6} If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.
{7} But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
{8} If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. {9} If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. {10} If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us."

1 John 2:4-9 (NKJV)
{4} He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
{5} But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.
{6} He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.
{7} Brethren, I write no new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which you heard from the beginning.
{8} Again, a new commandment I write to you, which thing is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away, and the true light is already shining.
{9} He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now.
{10} He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him.
{11} But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

The signs are in what a person says with no supporting fruit. John evidently ran into the same situation where people were saying they were something they were not. Perhaps you or someone you know have said what is in chapter 1 verses 6, 8, and chapter 2 verses 4, 6, 9.

1 John 1 (NKJV)
{6} If we say that we have fellowship with Him,
{8} If we say that we have no sin,

1 John 2 (NKJV)
{4} He who says, "I know Him,"
{6} He who says he abides in Him
{9} He who says he is in the light

While there are needs like providing shelter, food and care for ourselves and families we can’t ignore, how do we maintain priority so that the Word is not choked? The opening of 1 John 1 is the key.

(1 John 1 NKJV) "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life;
{2} the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us;
{3} that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.
{4} And these things we write to you that your joy may be full.

It is the continued revelation of Jesus as we seek Him out on a daily basis that allows us to maintain fellowship with Him and His people. John was able to declare that he saw Jesus and handled Jesus and eternal life was made manifest to him. Have you done that lately? Those who have neglected to seek Jesus as the first part of their day have no defense against worldly cares and are overwhelmed. It has been my experience when someone is struggling to flow with your home church gathering it is the lack of revelation of Jesus. As we read the above passage, not only is fellowship impossible with Christian brothers and sisters but fullness of joy is out of reach also. This turmoil highlights the conflicts inside the person. How frustrating it is to try to do something that can never happen? I like John want others to enjoy the fellowship and joy he had with the Father and His Son, but there is no substitute for the fresh revelation of Jesus.

God Bless,
Bro. Ken