Tag Archive: depression


As summer draws to a close, I pray that this short series of testimonies shared by former Jehovah’s Witnesses placed a love and compassion for these people (and for the many others who are being deceived by false teachings) within your hearts, and that from now on you will prayerfully consider taking at least a few minutes to either briefly share your testimony with them, or lovingly share some of God’s truth with them that will cause them to think about what they have been taught instead of being rude to them or closing the door in their faces as many sadly do –including some professing Christians. If you know God’s Word well and the Lord leads you to invite them in, try to keep the conversation from going off topic. Above all, pray for God to prepare their hearts to receive the truth of His Word and whatever He would lead you to say to them before they go on their way.

Now I present to you, the very moving testimony of Floyd Erwin, former Jehovah’s Witness for twenty-six years, who finally came to understand from reading God’s Word that Jesus Christ truly is God:

Thank you very much for stopping by and taking time out of your busy day to read some of my posts and poems.

God Bless You

~Mary/Living4HisGlory

SCRIPTURES FOR YOU TO REFLECT ON

“I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.” (John 8:24)

“Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.  Blessed is the man whose sin the LORD will never count against him.” (Romans 4:7,8)

“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Romans 5:1)

“I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” (Galatians 2:21)

  “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this, not from yourselves, it is the gift of God–not by works, so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:8-10)

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life.” (John 6:47)

“Jesus answered,  “I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6)

“For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.” (1 Timothy 2:5,6)

In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe.  The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.  So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs.

 For to which of the angels did God ever say,

“You are my Son; today I have become your Father”?

Or again,

“I will be his Father,and he will be my Son”?

And again, when God brings his firstborn into the world, he says,

“Let all God’s angels worship him.”

In speaking of the angels he says,

“He makes his angels spirits, and his servants flames of fire.”

But about the Son he says,

“Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.”

He also says,

“In the beginning, Lord, you laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. They will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment. You will roll them up like a robe; like a garment they will be changed. But you remain the same, and your years will never end.”

To which of the angels did God ever say,

“Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”?

 Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?” (Hebrews 1:1-14)

“Now Thomas (called Didymus) one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in His hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe it.”  A week later His disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then He said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see My hands. Reach out your hand and put it into My side. Stop doubting and believe.” Thomas said to Him, “My Lord  and my God!” Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen Me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (John 20:24-29)

“He [Jesus Christ] is the image of the invisible God, the *firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created; things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. And He is the head of the body, the church; He is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything He might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all His fullness dwell in Him, and through Him t0 reconcile to Himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through His blood, shed on the cross.” (Colossians 1:15-20) *(firstborn – unique in rank and privilege).

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As another year has come to an end, many of you may find yourselves disappointed because things did not work out as you had hoped and prayed that they would. Or you may be among the many who find yourself in the midst of an overwhelming trial that seems as if it will never come to an end. You may even feel as if you do not have the slightest bit of hope left and now you are spiraling down from just being discouraged to feeling as if you are sinking down in the depths of despair and into a deep depression. Sadly, this is what happens when our expectations are not met because we made the mistake of playing out certain scenarios in our minds on how we think God is going to do the things that we have prayed about. But we must choose to trust in God with all of our hearts and lean not on our own understanding; as Christians we must love God and live for Him regardless of what the outcome of our situations may be.

We must also come to the realization that because man has a free will, God will not violate man’s freedom in order to bring about an answer to our prayer. For example: I had prayed for many years that God would fill my “husband” with a godly sorrow for all that he had done and bring him to repentance and that he would believe the truth of the gospel that I had not only shared with him personally, but also through a very long letter that I had written to him, and through the truth of God’s Word in the Bible that I had given to him. I firmly believed that the day would come when he would believe the good news of the gospel and place his faith and trust in Jesus Christ alone for his salvation and that he would repent and return home. I believed that God would restore our marriage and use us both in ministry for His glory and to give hope to others who had problems in their marriage. And in spite of the fact that God hates divorce, God did not violate the choice that my “husband” made to file for divorce and to bring our marriage to an end.

Our God is a mighty God who is capable of doing the most amazing miracles, but we must never forget the part that man plays in the scheme of things. Therefore, when the battles continue to rage, when our hearts continue to break, when the tears once again fill our eyes, we must choose to continue to trust Him and praise Him in spite of what we see.

When circumstances attempt to steal our hope, we must then recognize that we have put our hope in the wrong place; our hope must be in God alone. It is He who is the lifter of our heads and the one who gives us His strength where we are weak and His peace that surpasses all human understanding. True joy comes from knowing God through placing one’s trust in what Jesus Christ did for all of us when He lived the perfect, sinless life that we could never live, died a horrendously painful death by crucifixion in our place for all our sins, and arose from the dead on the third day for our justification. No matter how dark and evil your deeds may be, if you choose to believe the truly good news that Jesus Christ died for you and receive this free gift of salvation He will be the one who will change your heart and renew your mind; you will be born-again and become a new creation in Christ.  Your sins will be cast into the deepest sea never to be remembered again (Hebrews 10:4-14, Micah 7:19), and they will become as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12).

So, dear reader, I will not say “Happy New Year” to you, because the happiness that the world speaks of depends on happenings which, as you well know, change from day to day. Instead, I pray that you will place your hope and trust in God and receive His love and forgiveness if you have not yet made the choice to do so. Life will still be hard and trials will come to test your faith to see if it is genuine or not, but I can assure you because of all that I have been through that His grace will be sufficient, His strength will be made perfect in your weakness, and His peace that surpasses all human understanding will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus as you choose not to worry but choose instead to pray about everything. (Philippians 4:6,7)

And now to give you a glimpse, yet a rather detailed look, at what (Lord willing) I will be sharing with you on this blog in 2017:

I will be continuing to write more posts for the Catholicism series in which I am presently comparing many of the teachings that can be found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church with Scriptures in a Catholic New Testament Bible, trusting that God will use His Word to reveal the truly good news of the gospel to many precious Catholics. There will be many posts that will be written in this series in which the mystical aspects of Catholicism will clearly be shown to you (one of these posts is coming very soon), and you will, once again, not only realize the extreme importance and necessity of testing the teachings of men (and women) against the truth of God’s Word, but also you will realize  how we must make the choice to believe God’s Word over the words of men.

When I am finally finished writing the Catholicism series, I will then begin writing another series in which the teachings of Calvinism/Reformed Theology — T.U.L.I.P. – Total depravity, Unconditional election, Limited atonement,  Irresistible grace, Perseverance of the saints — will be compared to many Scriptures. These teachings have been weighing heavily on my mind over the past four years after learning about them by not only reading many articles written by Calvinists, but also by listening to many debates on the teachings of Reformed Theology/Calvinism as well as by listening to teachings and reading articles by former Calvinists and pastors who compare the teachings of Reformed Theology against Scripture. I will be sharing some of these teachings with you here, as well, when the time comes. 

I have personally come to know a few Calvinists who have become very special to me, so I am also doing this series with them in mind, and in my prayers, and upon my heart.

In the beginning of this year I actually thought and prayed about writing and expressing my concerns about Calvinism at some point this year, but clearly I had no idea then just how long it was  actually going to take me to write this series on Catholicism. Once I briefly mentioned my concerns about Calvinism when I  replied to a comment that someone had made about it in my post about Matt Chandler (who is a Calvinist), and in many of my recent posts this year when I found it necessary to post a warning about a false teacher that was written by a Calvinist I made it clear to all of you that I do not adhere to the teachings of Reformed Theology, but I never went beyond that –until now.

Since I do not want to mislead anyone, and because I want to make it clear to all of you just how serious I am about this, and how deeply concerned I am (just like many other Christians are) about what Calvinism teaches because it distorts the very character and nature of God and the Word of God, I just deleted one of the more popular posts that I wrote back in March of 2014 entitled, IS YOUR PASTOR A SHEPHERD OR A WOLF – WOLVES IN THE PULPIT. In this post I shared Tom Pennington’s message, as well as Phil Johnson’s message from the 2014 Shepherd’s Conference. I originally shared their messages because I was still deeply troubled due to the fact that my former pastor for 14 1/2 years — James MacDonald of Harvest Bible Chapel, Rolling Meadows — made the decision to place Steven  Furtick and Mark Driscoll in the pulpit while I was still attending there. Even though I thought Phil Johnson and Tom Pennington’s messages were good at the time that I posted them, I now realize that I cannot keep their messages on my blog and still claim to be deeply concerned about what Reformed Theology/Calvinism teaches. At the point in time when I shared that post with all of you I was not fully aware of all that Calvinism teaches. Since I am much more informed now after doing so much research on Calvinism I  did not even hesitate for a moment before deleting that post. When time allows, I will be going over all of my previous posts and either deleting other things that I have posted, or I will at least be adding warnings if for some reason I see the need to keep something that was done by a Calvinist.

The one thing that comes to mind that I would like to keep on my  blog is the video that Calvinist, James White did in which he analyzed everything that Modalist and Word of Faith teacher, T D Jakes had said when he took part in the Elephant Room II Conference in January of 2012. Christians need to hear what went on that night during that Conference and realize that T D Jakes did not embrace the doctrine of the Trinity as those in attendance that night were led to believe, and James White made that abundantly clear in his video. However, if I come across something equally as good that was written or recorded  by a pastor or teacher who is not a Calvinist I will delete James White’s video and replace it with what I find. Okay, I am beginning to ramble, so I need to get back on track:

Unbeknownst to those who read this blog, as I seriously thought and prayed about addressing the teachings of Calvinism on my blog I was actually contacted by three different people who requested that I write about it. What they shared with me will remain confidential, but I will simply say that God used them to strongly confirm to me that this is something I need to write about.

I will now admit to you that one reason why it is taking me so long to write the Catholicism series is because my concern about Calvinism is equally as strong as it is about Catholicism. Therefore, I sometimes find myself doing research on Calvinism when I should actually be writing the next post in the Catholicism series. But with God’s help I will be more focused in 2017 and I will choose to concentrate on writing what I need to share with you about Catholicism first before I do any more research on Calvinism.

When I do begin the series on Calvinism, I promise to be Christlike in how I present this information to you, and I will not bash any Reformed/Calvinist pastor or teacher as I present this information to you. I will also ask those of you who will choose to make a comment on any of these posts in this upcoming series to respectfully do the same, no matter what side of this issue you presently stand on.

One of the things that I will be doing in order to prepare to write this series on Calvinism is that I will be listening to all of Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion which I found recorded on YouTube, and I will then compare John Calvin’s comments against Scripture and present them all to you.

For those of you who have subscribed to this blog and consider yourselves to be Reformed/Calvinists, I realize that some of you may now decide to unsubscribe to this blog after reading some of what I will be sharing here in 2017.  However, I truly hope and pray that you will at least consider reading what I have to share here when the time comes. After all, if you truly love Jesus Christ — and I believe that you do — I know that the desire of your heart is to walk in truth as God’s Word shows us that we are to do:

“I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father.” (2 John 1:4)

“For I rejoiced greatly, when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.” (3 John 1:4)

Will you be willing to test the teachings of Calvinism and the teachings of your favorite teacher on the subject against Scripture as God shows us in His Word that we are to do?I pray that you will.

“These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” (Acts 17:11)

In this series I will also be presenting posts to you in which former Calvinists will be sharing their testimonies. Two people have already agreed to share their stories here with all of you.

You will also be reading a post that will originally be written by someone who has a loved one who is presently deeply involved in Calvinism. By reading what this person is willing to share with all of you, my prayer is that many of  you will then come to realize how the teachings of Calvinism distorts one’s thoughts about God and Biblical Christianity.

If you are a former Calvinist and you are interested in sharing your story here, please contact me using the Contact Form and I will consider sharing your story here, as well, as long as you are a born-again Christian and not an Arminian…Arminianism  is based on some theological ideas of Jacobus Arminius who was a Dutch Reformed theologian.  Like I have said in many of my posts, as Christians we are to be followers of Jesus Christ alone; we are not to be followers of any man (or woman) and their ministry.

In the coming year I will also be presenting teachings to you on Reformed Theology by pastors who have compared these teachings against Scripture and have found them to be very troubling.

Recently I heard Pastor Chris Quintana of Calvary Chapel Cypress  announce that he will be having George Bryson speaking on Calvinism in March.  George Bryson has written books on Calvinism such as, THE FIVE POINTS OF CALVINISM:  WEIGHED AND FOUND WANTING and THE DARK SIDE OF CALVINISM. If this presentation by George Bryson will be live streamed I will (Lord willing) share it with you here, as well.

A good suggestion was given to me way back in June of this year by a reader of this blog in which he stated in his comment that I should consider putting together a page or a post which lists some of the videos that I believe to be the most important or helpful. So Alec, thank you very much again for that very good suggestion! Lord willing, that post will be coming in January or February. I am so sorry that it is taking me so long to actually getting around to putting it together!

I will also be writing some posts to show the importance of praying for discernment –even while listening to so-called Christian songs!

As always, I will continue to challenge all of you in my posts to test everything that you read and listen to against Scripture so that you will never be deceived by the many pastors and teachers who are encouraging Christians to have experiences with God or telling them to look for truth outside of the pages of God’s Word.

Truly we are living at a time when Jesus Christ could return at any moment! Maybe even before the first day of this New Year comes to an end! If so, would you be ready? Is your faith in what Jesus Christ has already done for you? Or are you trusting that your good works will be the evidence that will grant you eternal life? Do not be deceived!

“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a  workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)

“Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” (John 6:28,29)

 

 

Thank you to those of you who have taken time out of your busy days over this past year to stop by here to read some of my posts and poems. I appreciate all of you very much!

Thank you also to those of you who took the time to leave your comments  and words of wisdom, as well as your words of appreciation and encouragement. I can never thank you enough!

God bless each and every one of you in 2017 with His wisdom, His discernment, and His grace.

~Mary/Living4HisGlory

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Have you ever found yourself rushing through the list of genealogies when you find them as you’re reading through the gospel of Matthew and elsewhere? I must admit that I have done that many a time! However, I have grown to appreciate how God made certain to record the lineage of Jesus Christ in order to authenticate His Word historically. That’s not going to be the focus of this post,  but I have added a teaching by Dave Hunt to possibly help you to appreciate the genealogical record, and maybe you’ll slow down a bit and even reflect on the names the next time you read through the list in the gospel of Matthew.

The main purpose of this post is to reach out to those of you who do not have the hope and joy that comes from having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ by placing your trust in Him alone for your salvation. Instead, many of you are placing your trust in your religious practices, or in your good deeds done out of love within your hearts for the homeless or the lonely, yet at the same time you are hoping to earn acceptance by God through all the good that you do. Many of you fail to see that all of us are wretched sinners in the sight of a thrice Holy God, and that we all need a Savior. Jesus Christ, the Son of God made man, is our only hope to be reconciled to a Holy God.

The message the angels gave on that silent, Holy Night, when Jesus Christ willingly left all the glories of heaven to come down to this sin-filled world of ours, was a message filled with good news of great joy! But sadly, many of you are now sitting there with broken hearts and tear stained faces because you have never heard the good news of the gospel. If you feel as if no one loves you, I pray that you will come to understand the depth of the love that God has for you! Yes, you!  I am not promising that your life will turn out with a happy ending like most of the Hallmark movies do (that I enjoy watching from time to time), but I am promising you that if you will receive the gift of His love and forgiveness that He offers to every one of you who is willing to believe the good news, then He will not only give you His grace that is sufficient to bring you through the darkest trial that you could ever face, but also He will give you His peace that surpasses all human understanding. I speak from experience, dear reader.

Jesus Christ, the second Person in the Trinity, was wrapped in human flesh and willingly came to this earth to live the perfect, sinless life that you and I could never live, to become the spotless Lamb of God who would take away the sins of the world. Jesus Christ took God’s wrath that we deserve for all of our sins upon Himself; He died in our place as our substitute. But you must choose to receive this gift of His love and forgiveness, or you will be left standing before Him on judgment day still clothed in your sins, and your righteous deeds will appear only as filthy rags in His sight.         (Isaiah 64:6)

The choice is yours, and I pray that you will receive this precious gift that was paid for with His life. But it doesn’t end there. To show that God the Father accepted His death as full payment for the debt of our sins, He raised Jesus Christ from the dead for our justification! (Romans 4:25) Now that is truly good news to cause all to rejoice!!

Matthew Chapter 1 – King James Version

1 The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

2 Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren;

3 And Judas begat Phares and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom; and Esrom begat Aram;

4 And Aram begat Aminadab; and Aminadab begat Naasson; and Naasson begat Salmon;

5 And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse;

6 And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias;

7 And Solomon begat Roboam; and Roboam begat Abia; and Abia begat Asa;

8 And Asa begat Josaphat; and Josaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Ozias;

9 And Ozias begat Joatham; and Joatham begat Achaz; and Achaz begat Ezekias;

10 And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias;

11 And Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon:

12 And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel;

13 And Zorobabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim; and Eliakim begat Azor;

14 And Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud;

15 And Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob;

16 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.

17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.

18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.

19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily.

20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.

21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins.

22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,

23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:

25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus.
King James Version (KJV)

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RELATED SCRIPTURES

“What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.  Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works,  Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.  Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.” (Romans 4:1-8)

“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.  But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.” (Romans 5:8-19)

 “In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (1 John 4:9,10)

“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.         (Isaiah 64:6)

“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18)

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Thank you very much for stopping by and taking time out of your Christmas weekend to read some of my posts and poems.

A Blessed Christmas To You And Your Family

Mary/Living4HisGlory

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I know that many of you are alone this Christmas, and that you are either reflecting on the special Christmas memories from the past that you still treasure within your heart, wanting things to be as they were, but in reality you know that’s impossible.

Then there are many of you who are alone and you don’t have any good memories to even reflect upon. All the memories that still linger in your minds are ones you wish you could completely forget. And yet the harsh words, the abuse, the betrayals, the broken promises, the death of a loved one…all those painful memories somehow have a way of flooding back into your minds at this time of the year because of shattered hopes and dreams, heartbreak, and a longing for a love that will never disappoint you.

Then there are those of you who have lost all hope and desire to continue living because of some horrible choices that you have made in life, and you don’t even want to think about facing another day, and yet another whole year is about to begin!

No matter how you are feeling, I am writing this post to offer all of you hope. Real hope that comes from Jesus Christ alone!

Some Christians choose not to celebrate this holiday because of the many pagan roots that are a part of the celebration of Christmas. No one knows the exact day when Jesus was actually born, but to disregard the fact of the miraculous virgin birth of Jesus Christ, the second person of the Trinity, who willingly entered our fallen world cloaked in human flesh to show the extent of God’s love for us who are all depraved sinners in the sight of a thrice Holy God, is something that should leave us in awe!

Many people are continuously trying so hard to be accepted by God through their religion and by their good deeds, and yet God reached out to us and showed His love for us by sending Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son into the world as the greatest gift that He could ever give to us. His intention was that Jesus, being God in the flesh, would live the sinless life that we could never live, to become the perfect sacrifice for all of our sins and guilt when He would give His live in our place on the cross.

The only provision that He made so that we can be made right before Him is by putting our full trust in Jesus Christ’s death on the cross as FULL payment for all of our sins and guilt –including the sins that you think God could NEVER forgive you for — and in His resurrection from the dead which proves that Jesus Christ is God, and that His once for all sacrifice was accepted by God the Father as being sufficient to satisfy the wrath that God has towards us because of our sins.

God’s gift of love through His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, is the greatest gift that you could ever hope to receive! If you have never placed your trust in Jesus Christ alone for your forgiveness for sins, receive Jesus Christ, God’s greatest gift, today!

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.” (John 3:16-21)

“And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped Him in swaddling clothes, and laid Him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” (Luke 2:7-14)

In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (1 John 4:9,10)

“But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. But not as the offense, so also is the free gift. For if through the offense of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offenses unto justification. For if by one man’s offense death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) Therefore as by the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.” (Romans 5:8-19)

Jesus is the only way to God, and the only name we can call upon in order to be saved:

“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.” (John 14:6)

“Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by Him doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”           (Acts 4:10-12)

We cannot find Jesus or forgiveness through any religion or by our good works or through any thing we may do:

“But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages He might show the incomparable riches of His grace, expressed in His kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:4-10)

“I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” (Galatians 2:21)

“Then they asked Him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?” Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one He has sent.” (John 6:28,29)

But keep in mind that even the demons believe; they know who Jesus is:

“What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are–the Holy One of God!” (Mark 1:24)

“Whenever the impure spirits saw Him, they fell down before Him and cried out, “You are the Son of God.” (Mark 3:11)

“They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes. When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an impure spirit came from the tombs to meet Him. This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain. For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones. When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of Him. He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God’s name don’t torture me!” For Jesus had said to him, “Come out of this man, you impure spirit!” (Mark 5:1:8)

“Then He went down to Capernaum, a town in Galilee, and on the Sabbath He taught the people. They were amazed at His teaching, because His words had authority. In the synagogue there was a man possessed by a demon, an impure spirit. He cried out at the top of his voice, “Go away! What do You want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have You come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!” “Be quiet!” Jesus said sternly. “Come out of him!” Then the demon threw the man down before them all and came out without injuring him. All the people were amazed and said to each other, “What words these are! With authority and power He gives orders to impure spirits and they come out!” And the news about Him spread throughout the surrounding area.” (Luke 4:31-36)

“At sunset, the people brought to Jesus all who had various kinds of sickness, and laying His hands on each one, He healed them. Moreover, demons came out of many people, shouting, “You are the Son of God!” But He rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew He was the Messiah.” (Luke 4:40,41)

The demons believe in God…and tremble!

“Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.” (James 2:19)

And yet they will be cast into the lake of fire along with everyone who has not placed their trust in Jesus Christ and therefore do not have their names written in the Book of life:

“Then He will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” (Matthew 25:41)

“And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.” (Revelation 20:10)

The Judgment of the Dead

“Then I saw a great white throne and Him who was seated on it. The earth and the heavens fled from His presence, and there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what they had done. Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:11-15)

“I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”                       (Revelation 21:22-27)

Only by believing in Him and receiving Jesus by placing your trust in Him alone for your forgiveness for sins is the only way a person can become a child of God: (Verse 12)

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In Him was life; and the life was the light of men. 5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. 6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. 8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. 9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not. 11 He came unto His own, and His own received Him not. 12 But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. 14 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 1:1-14)

Jesus Christ is our only hope; our only Mediator:

“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all people.” (1 Timothy 2:1-6)

You can have assurance of eternal life:

“We accept human testimony, but God’s testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which He has given about His Son. Whoever believes in the Son of God accepts this testimony. Whoever does not believe God has made Him out to be a liar, because they have not believed the testimony God has given about His Son. And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” (1 John 5:9-13)

If you truly believe this good news of the gospel, then place your trust completely and only in Jesus Christ to save you and repent; turn from sin to God:

“Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” (Acts 3:19)

 

If you have never received Jesus Christ as your Savior, God’s greatest gift in which you will receive His love and His promise that He will never leave or forsake you, His complete forgiveness –no matter what you may have done, and His true peace that surpasses all human understanding, I pray that you will do it today!

“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:15)

Here are some songs that I pray will also bring you hope and joy in the midst of your sorrow:

HOPE WAS BORN THIS NIGHT – SIDEWALK PROPHETS

 

CHRISTMAS OFFERING – CASTING CROWNS

 

O COME ALL YE FAITHFUL – CASTING CROWNS

 

SILENT NIGHT – CASTING CROWNS

 

O HOLY NIGHT DAMARIS CARBAUGH

 

A CRADLE IN THE SHADOW OF A CROSS – DAMARIS CARBAUGH

 

MAY GOD GIVE YOU HIS GIFT – DAMARIS CARBAUGH

 

THIS IS CHRISTMAS – KUTLESS

 

WE ARE THE REASON – DAVID MEECE

 

 

For those of you who already know the joy of God’s love and forgiveness, Merry Christmas! Continue to faithfully share God’s love and truth with those whom God will allow to cross your path in this world that is growing spiritually darker by the day, whenever God gives you an opportunity!

Thank you very much to those of you who occasionally stop by my blog and take time out of your busy days to read some of my posts and poems. I appreciate every one of you!

God Bless You

Merry Christmas!

~Mary/Living4HisGlory

 

RELATED POSTS

BEYOND THE MANGER TO THE CROSS – DECEMBER 2009

FOR GOD SO LOVED HE GAVE – CHRISTMAS 2010

CHRISTMAS – HOLDING ON TO HOPE – DECEMBER 2011

LET’S NOT FORGET THAT JESUS IS THE REASON FOR THE SEASON – DECEMBER 2012

A PERFECT PEACE – DECEMBER 2013

CHRISTMAS BLESSINGS TO ALL AND A FEW THOUGHTS – DECEMBER 25, 2014

CHRISTMAS REFLECTIONS – DECEMBER 31, 2014

 

worship-4-3-1Welcome to another ‘TESTIMONY TUESDAY.’ Lord willing, at least once a month on Tuesdays, whenever I come across a video or an article that either presents a Biblical testimony of someone coming to the understanding  of the true  gospel, or a testimony of someone who was set free from a cult or some form of spiritual deception, etc., I will post it for you with the hope that it will bless and encourage you, and, above all, so that God would receive glory and honor for setting these people free.

It is also my hope and prayer that when I share these testimonies with you, God will use His Word, and the Biblical truth presented in these testimonies, to set many other people free from the same bondage and spiritual deception that the people in the videos and articles I choose to share with you have been set free from.

And now for today’s TESTIMONY TUESDAY:

In light of the ruling that took place in the Supreme Court on June 26th, 2015, in which same-sex marriage was made legal in every state in the United States, I thought it fitting to share with you some of the many testimonies of men and women who were once fully immersed in the homosexual lifestyle, but have found hope, forgiveness, freedom, and healing through Jesus Christ. It is my prayer that in doing so, some of the few who may wear the label of Christian but do not act in a Christ-like manner towards  LGBT people will come across this post and realize that they all need our love and compassion just like everyone does.

As you will see by watching the videos that I added to the Playlist below, many of them were led into this lifestyle due to the fact that they were sexually abused as a child, or they went through gender confusion because of certain things that happened in their childhood or adolescent years, and got into this lifestyle because they were seeking love and acceptance.

It is also my hope and prayer that many LGBT people will be led by God to come across these testimonies — whether they find these testimonies here on my blog, on YouTube, or on other websites where Christians are sincerely reaching out in love and sharing truth with LGBT people — and that they will find hope by listening to these testimonies and healing by turning to Jesus Christ for forgiveness.

Every one of us is a sinner in need of a Savior no matter what sins we may have committed against a completely Holy God. Each one of us must confess our sins to God and place our trust completely in the only provision that God has made for us to be forgiven, which is in the sacrifice of His One and only Son, Jesus Christ, God in the flesh. He died on the cross in our place for our sins, taking upon Himself the full wrath of God that was intended for each of us. If we place our complete trust in His sacrifice as full payment for our sins and not in anything that we can do to try and earn His forgiveness, we will then be able to come directly to God and have a personal relationship with Him and no longer be separated from Him because of our sins. He offers us His mercy and grace, as well as His never ending love.

I pray that you will be willing to receive this free gift of salvation that was paid with the precious blood of Jesus shed for you –no matter how sinful your life may be. Come to Him as you are with godly sorrow in your heart, and He will be the one who will transform your mind and your life as you begin to read the truth that’s in His Word, and by the power of His Holy Spirit. He will wash all your sin, guilt, and shame away, and give you a brand new life. Your life may not change over night, but in time you will be able to look back and see just how far He has brought you from the person you once were, and rejoice in how He will use your life for His glory. 

Lord willing, when time allows, I will continue to add testimonies to the following Playlist. So if you’re interested in hearing more, you can occasionally check back here. Or you can simply search YouTube and find many more testimonies on your own by searching for “ex-gay and lesbian testimonies,” etc.

 

 

RELATED SCRIPTURES

“Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade others. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience. We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than in what is in the heart. If we are “out of our mind,” as some say, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:The old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.” (2 Corinthians 5:11-13)

“ ‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.” (Leviticus 18:22)

“The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error. Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.” (Romans 1: 18-32)

“Or do you not know that wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor homosexual offenders, nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”     (1 Corinthians 6:9-11)

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. If you really know Me, you will know My Father as well. From now on, you do know Him and have seen Him.”           (John 14:6,7)

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God–not by works , so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:8,-10)

“For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.  It teaches us to say,  “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope–the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for Himself a people that are His very own, eager to do what is good.” (Titus 2:11-14)

“But we know that when He appears, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.  Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as He is pure.  Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact sin is lawlessness.  But you know that  He appeared so that He might take away our sins.  And in Him is no sin.  No one who lives in Him keeps on sinning.  No one who continues to sin has either seen Him or known Him.” (1 John 3:3-6)

“Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.”  And where these have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin.  Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, His body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith,having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.  Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.” (Hebrews 10:17-23)

 “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” (Acts 3:19)

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Thank you for stopping by and taking time out of your busy day to read some of my posts and poems.

God Bless You

~Mary Dalke/Living4HisGlory

RELATED READING:

THE LINE HAS BEEN DRAWN – ON WHICH SIDE WILL YOU STAND

LORD WILLING, MORE NEW POSTS COMING SOON!