Tag Archive: hope


As those of us who are believers in Jesus Christ and who earnestly contend for the faith  stand together and see another year come to an end, let’s continue to stand together being determined in our hearts to live each day in 2018 with faith, hope, and courage in our hearts; together, let’s press on with our minds already made up to be determined to live for Jesus Christ by continuing to earnestly contend for the faith not only by sharing the good news of the Biblical gospel with those who have yet to hear it, but also by exposing false teachings, firmly, and yet with His love and gentleness to show the way out of spiritual darkness and back to Jesus Christ. Let’s leave the past behind us and press on together, one day at a time in His grace and His strength, and let’s continue to encourage each other in the midst of our heartaches and trials.

There will definitely be times of joy that He has in store for us in the New Year ahead, but no matter what we may see in our world or face personally that may fill us with sorrow as we continue to watch the world around us reject God in so many different ways, and as we see evil increase even more, and as our hearts remain burdened for our loved ones who are either drifting away from Biblical truth or who have yet to place their trust in Jesus Christ, may we continue to stand firm together on our foundation and only Rock — Jesus Christ — one day at a time, no matter what may come our way in 2018!

For those of you who have yet to place your trust in all that Jesus Christ has accomplished for us when He willingly came into this world to become our Savior, and the only way to the Father and only means by which we can be reconciled with a thrice holy God, let me present the Biblical gospel to you: Knowing that one day He would take upon Himself the full wrath of God that was meant for us because of all of our sin and guilt, Jesus Christ, still being fully God, willingly took on human flesh and entered our sin-filled world. He lived the perfect, sinless life that we could never live, became the perfect, spotless, sacrificial Lamb of God by dying on the cross in our place, and arose from the dead on the third day which showed that God accepted His once for all sacrifice as being completely sufficient to remove His wrath that He had/has against us because of all of our sins, evil ways, and wretchedness.

There is no longer any need for any type of sacrifice to remove our sins! The truly good news is that Jesus Christ paid the debt for our sins in full!! No matter what you may have done or are presently doing that now fills you with guilt and regret, Jesus Christ paid for it all, in full! If you choose to believe this good news with all of your being, get upon your knees and receive this amazing free gift of salvation! Place your trust in Jesus Christ alone, and not in any of your good works. If you do, you will be covered in the righteousness of Jesus Christ, and your sins will be washed away, never to be remembered again!

“As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” (Psalm 103:12)

“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 4:7,8)

If, however, you continue to reject Jesus Christ, who is the only way to the Father and the only way that He has provided for us to be reconciled to Himself, and if you continue to choose to place your trust in your own good works to get you to heaven, I must share with you what His Word clearly says to show you what will happen to you, regardless of what you may believe: His wrath will remain upon you and you will be cast into an eternal lake of fire that was never created for man, but only for the devil and his angels:

“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them.” (John 3:36)

“He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” (1 John 5:10-13)

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

Jesus Christ is our only hope, and reading His Word reveals truth to us and gives us  a living hope. Drugs, alcohol, and multiple relationships may momentarily satisfy an empty heart, but the deep hurt, loneliness, sorrow, guilt, shame, and regrets that we have will still remain. My prayer is that you will turn to Him before this day/year comes to an end. He is the only one who can truly help us face our every tomorrow. No matter how painful and heartbreaking the circumstances of our lives may be in 2018, these are just some of the promises in His Word that are given to those who are truly His children by believing and receiving the good news of the gospel and placing our trust in Jesus Christ alone for our salvation:

 He will never leave or forsake us, (Matthew 28:20, Hebrews 13:5), His strength will be made perfect in our weakness, (2 Corinthians 12:9,10), His peace will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus, (Philippians 4:4-9), and He will give us His wisdom to deal with every situation we find ourselves in.

Together let’s continue to walk in His truth and press on until we all cross the finish line and meet in glory! Or, by the way the world is today, those of us who have already placed our complete trust in Him may soon meet Him in the air! If Jesus Christ returned today, would you be ready?

RELATED SCRIPTURES

For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.” (Romans 10:3)

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”                                            (2 Corinthians 12:9,10)

“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.” (Romans 5:17)

“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)

And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.” (Philippians 3:9)

“…and, lo, I am with you always, even  unto the end of the world. Amen.” (Matthew 28:20)

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” (Philippians 4:4-9)

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7)

For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins. But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year. For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins. Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law; Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before, This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; for he is faithful that promised.” (Hebrews 10:1-23)

“Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16)

“Dear friends, this is now my second letter to you. I have written both of them as reminders to stimulate you to wholesome thinking. I want you to recall the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets and the command given by our Lord and Savior through your apostles.

Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.

Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells.

So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him. Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.

Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.” (2 Peter 3:1-17)

 

In closing this year out, I just want to thank you for standing with me and for taking time out of your busy, chaotic life to read some of my posts and poems during 2017, and thank you for your words of encouragement, as well! I truly appreciate every one of you!

A blessed, healthy, hope-filled New Year to you and your family!

God Bless You

~Mary/Living4HisGlory

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All of us have stories that we can share about heartache and loss. It’s how we deal with them that truly matters. Some choose to harden their hearts and push everyone away. Others may develop a heart of deep compassion because they know what it feels like to be lied to, abused, rejected, and unloved. They will always be the ones looking for those who are alone in a crowd at a party or some type of gathering desiring to bring hope to a shattered life.

Some go on with life as if they have years to make things right with those they have distanced themselves from, but tomorrow is promised to no one. Life is so fragile, and so fleeting, as well. My precious mom will be eighty-nine next month and my eyes fill with tears just thinking about the fact that there’s not much time left before she will be gone from this earth, and that causes me to treasure every moment that I have with her when we get together because even though I have shared the good news of the Biblical gospel with her many times, I don’t yet have the assurance that she has placed her trust in Jesus Christ alone for her salvation, as I have.

I hope that you will take the time to treasure every moment that you have with your loved ones, as well. And if you are a follower of Jesus Christ I pray that you will share the love of Jesus and the good news of the Biblical gospel with your loved ones who do not yet know Him and all that He accomplished for them/us through His sinless life, His sacrifice on the cross in our place for our sins, and His glorious bodily resurrection from the dead for our justification.

This Holiday Season I hope that you will set aside how you personally feel and reach out to someone who you know is hurting maybe as much as you are, and try to bring some hope and encouragement into their lives. Or, if you are someone who has unforgiveness towards anyone, now is the time to make things right because tomorrow just might be too late, and living with regret is even harder.

All of us have so much to be thankful for compared to so many people in this world. Yes, you may be deeply hurting right now because of the way that you have been treated by others, or because of how you are continuing to be treated by others, but unforgiveness only hurts the one who holds on to it. Express your sorrow and the anger that you feel to God who created you and who loves you more than anyone could ever love you! Take time to thank Him for the many blessings that He has given to you this year. Forgive those who have hurt you with an act of your will, and allow God to heal you emotionally, and to make things right and to change the circumstances in His time. Or He may just choose to change you through your circumstances. But please don’t wrongly believe that He approves  of abusive behavior or causes things like that to happen; do not blame God for the wrongdoings and sinful acts that others choose to do.


UPDATE: When I originally wrote this post it was rather late; it was close to  midnight when I finally finished it. Because it was so late I didn’t have enough time to carefully consider how some people might perceive some of the things that I had said concerning forgiveness, so I want to update this post now with additional information, some personal thoughts, and more Scriptures in order to give a more Biblically balanced view of forgiveness according to God’s Word:

As I started writing this post the night before Thanksgiving, the main people I had in mind were those who have chosen to distance themselves from family due to a minor disagreement or an unwillingness to forgive someone who has sincerely apologized for their wrongdoing or their failure to do what’s right. However, I failed to think of the many of you out there who must distance yourselves from family members because, sadly, you have been physically and/or sexually abused by those who were supposed to have loved and protected you. If that is you, I am deeply sorry if I hurt or offended  you by causing you to think that you are wrong for choosing to stay away from abusive family members. It took my dear Sister-In-Christ, May I Not Clang, who left a comment in which she shared some heart wrenching things that her family has gone through in life, to make me realize what I failed to include in my post which I will now add:

Yes, as hard as it may be, we must come before God, and with an act of our will we must choose to forgive those who have hurt us out of obedience and love for Him, even when our hearts are still filled with crushing pain and a righteous form of anger. We must choose to forgive even if the person never chooses to express any amount of sorrow for the wrong they did to us. We must release them to God and allow Him to deal with them as only He can.

Forgiveness is a very difficult thing to talk about, and it’s even more difficult to do! I speak from experience, so please don’t think that I am giving you advise so easily as if I don’t understand what it feels like to be deeply hurt, betrayed, lied to, and rejected. I have had to deal with things in life such as verbal abuse, and things that I never could have gone through if it wasn’t for the grace of God and His strength being made perfect in my weakness:

My husband left me and my two children when they were young, and he told me it was because I had changed so much since I became a Christian. However, the painful truth that was made known to everyone many years ago, is that he left me for another woman, and only God knows just how many years he was involved with her before he actually left us. God kept trying to show me what was going on in many visible ways, which included having my eyes fall upon verses dealing with adultery when I would open my Bible to read it during the day. When I refused to believe that he was cheating on me, God brought me to face the painful reality; the phone calls began:

A woman called one day and asked for my husband by name, and when I asked who it was that was calling, she replied by saying, “Oh, just a friend,” and she hung up. There were other times when I would answer the phone and say, “Hello,” and the person would then simply hang up. We did not have caller id at the time, but the time soon came (after receiving a disturbing phone call in the middle of the night) when I saw the need to have it, and it verified what I believed to be true based on certain evidence that I had found. Sometimes being a detective-at-heart, as I am, makes the shocking truth even more shocking — and heartbreaking — when you see more of the facts. 😥

There were many other heartbreaking things that happened over the years after he left us, the worst being the fact that when we were still legally married my husband chose to bring the woman he was living with to our daughter’s wedding. Instead of ignoring her as many people told me to do, I prayed for God to show me the right time to go over to her and to confront her. I did it in such a way that it dealt with the truth, and yet it honored God in how I did it and by what I said, and by what I didn’t say or do, as well! Confronting her was my way of fighting for my ‘husband’ and our marriage (what was left of it). I was hoping that my ‘husband’ would see it that way, and that he would come to realize just how much I loved him, and that he would end his relationship with her and take steps towards making things right between us. But that never happened. I became angry at God because I thought that He was going to restore our marriage. My anger towards God only lasted for a short time. It ended on the day that my anger quickly turned to repentance before God when my eyes fell upon this verse:

“However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8b)

In a moment’s time God used His Word to show me that I was turning away from Him, and I realized that I must love Him for who He is and for all that He had already done for me [by sending His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, who bore all of my/our sins and took upon Himself the full wrath of God intended for me/you for my/our sins and die in my/your place upon the cross, and that He arose from the dead for our justification] and that my love for Him must never be based upon what He does or doesn’t do for me! My life changed that day, and I made a decision to love God and to live for Him with all of my heart whether my husband chose to come back or not.

The passage of Scripture that I stood on from that moment on was:

“If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it. But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.” (Daniel 3:17,18)

He never came back. I realized that as much as  God hates divorce, He will not violate man’s free will, and my ‘husband’ freely chose to continue on with his adulterous relationship, and he completely ended our marriage in divorce and married the woman less than a year after the divorce was final.

In Matthew 6:14,15 and Mark 11:25 God shows us the importance of forgiveness if we find ourselves holding anything against anyone:

“For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins your Father will not forgive your sins.”

“And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

 

As hard as it was I chose to forgive them both before God, even though no words of sorrow were ever expressed to me by either of them. On the day the divorce was final I read a letter that I had written to my ‘husband’ in front of the judge which brought me peace and a sense of closure, but I did it to mainly express what was in my heart to my ‘husband’ and to bring glory to God through the words that I said that day in order to make the most of that opportunity knowing also that the judge was Jewish.

CONCERNING ABUSE

God’s Word gives Christians a very strong  and clear warning concerning getting involved with anyone who claims to be a Christian and yet continues in a sinful, unrepentant lifestyle. This verse alone shows those of you who have been verbally and sexually abused by a professing Christian that you are not to associate with anyone who has abused you in the past and has not come to you broken and remorseful for the wrong they have done and the hurt they have inflicted upon you:

“I wrote you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people. I was not including the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world. But now I am writing you not to associate with anyone who claims to be a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a verbal abuser, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat.” (1 Corinthians 5:9-11)

The life of a true follower of Jesus Christ will not be perfect, but there will be a strong desire to live according to the Holy Spirit and not according to the flesh, and their lives should show forth the fruits of the Spirit. This passage of Scripture also comes with a strong warning:

“So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law. The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires.” (Galatians 5:16-25)

Please forgive me! When I originally wrote this post I did not have sexual or physical abuse in mind when I said how we should all set aside our differences and forgive those who have hurt or offended us and join with family! I never want any of you to think that I am condoning putting one’s self in a situation where there may be the possibility of them being sexually, physically, or even verbally abused again by a family member or friend of the family! In the minds of some people, who have been abused and have placed their faith and trust in Jesus Christ and have been transformed by His Spirit and His Word, they may think that attending a family gathering where their abuser will be present is showing the love of Jesus Christ. However, if the person has not come to the point of asking your forgiveness for the wrong they have done to you, you may actually be allowing them to continue on in their sinful behavior towards you! God would not want you to put yourself in a situation where you may be harmed again!

Rape and physical abuse is never the fault of the person whom these acts of violence have been done against! Don’t believe the lies they tell you! You do not deserve to be treated that way! There is no good excuse for their destructive behavior towards you!

If you are presently being sexually or physically abused by someone in any way, please tell someone that you completely trust! The truth needs to be made known! You will be protecting others who may possibly become a victim by this abuser if you don’t let the truth be know! Think of your little sisters and brothers! Think of your little nieces, nephews, and cousins! Yes, it will be very difficult. Yes, some may not believe you, but this is something that you must do!

If you are not a Christian, come to God through Jesus Christ; He is the only way to the Father. He will give you the wisdom to know what you need to do next and He will heal you from all that you have been through. He will make all things new, give you hope to face tomorrow, His grace that is sufficient, and His strength that will be made perfect in your weakness.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17)

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weakness, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9,10) END OF UPDATE


IN CLOSING

God offers the free gift of salvation to whosoever will come. Only through Jesus Christ  can we receive forgiveness for the vilest of sins and freedom from the burden of guilt by placing our trust in His once for all sacrifice when He died on the cross in your place and in mine. Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, took upon Himself the full wrath of  God that we deserve for our sins, so that we could be covered with His righteousness in God’s sight, and our sins would be paid in full, never to be remembered again. If you choose to place your trust in what He did for you the barrier of sin that separates you from Himself will be removed and you will then become His child. This is the only provision that He made for us to receive His forgiveness, true peace, and a relationship with Him.

There is no other way:

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

There is no other name:

“It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. He is ‘the stone you builders rejected, which has become the capstone.’ Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:10b-12)

“There is no other Mediator:

“For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus who gave himself as a ransom for all men–the testimony given in its proper time.”      (1 Timothy 2:5,6)

 

Give thanks to the Lord this Holiday Season — and every day — for He truly is good! Others may have wronged you, but God desires to forgive you, to heal all the pain in your life, bring you true joy, and His peace that surpasses all human understanding. I truly speak from experience!

I want to express my thanks to all of  you who stop by here from time to time to read my blog posts. I appreciate every one of you!

To those of you who are in the United States, a blessed Thanksgiving to you and your family!

God Bless You

~Mary/Living4HisGlory

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THE TOMB INDEED WAS MADE SECURE

 

Matthew 27 King James Version 

62 Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate,

63 Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.

64 Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.

65 Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.

66 So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.

 

DO NOT BE DECEIVED, HE HAS RISEN INDEED!!

Matthew 28 King James Version    

 In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.

And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.

His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:

And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.

And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.

He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.

And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word.

And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.

10 Then said Jesus unto them, Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me.

11 Now when they were going, behold, some of the watch came into the city, and shewed unto the chief priests all the things that were done.

12 And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave large money unto the soldiers,

13 Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept.

14 And if this come to the governor’s ears, we will persuade him, and secure you.

15 So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day.

16 Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.

17 And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.

18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

King James Version

King James Bible

The Resurrection of Christ – 1 Corinthians 15:1-28

Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.

For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time. For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. Therefore whether it were I or they, so we preach, and so ye believed.

The Resurrection of the Dead

“Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.

The Order of Resurrection

“But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith, all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.”

 

RELATED SCRIPTURES

 

“He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” (John 3:36)

“And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.” (1 John 5:11,12)

“These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” (1 John 5:13)

IN CLOSING:

Precious Jewish person, the true elect and chosen of God, Jesus Christ truly is the Messiah you  have been waiting for:

 

Isaiah 53 King James Version (KJV)

 

1 Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed?

For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.

And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.

10 Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.

11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.

12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

 

For those of you who have placed your full trust in Jesus Christ alone for your salvation, have a Blessed Resurrection Sunday!

For those of you who have not yet come to the understanding of all that Jesus Christ has done to provide the only way for you to be accepted by a thrice Holy God, please take some time in the days and weeks ahead to read the Gospel of John, the Book of Romans, and the Book of Hebrews, especially Chapters 7 through 10, praying all the while that God will open up your understanding to grasp the truth that is in His Word.

Jesus Christ and the truth of the Biblical gospel has the power to set you free from sin and spiritual deception, to transform your life, to fill you with true hope, and to give you a peace that surpasses all human understanding.

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

God Bless You

~Mary/Living4HisGlory

 

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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

Save

Save

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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)

Public Domain

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)

RELATED VIDEOS

 

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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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SERMON SUNDAY

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“Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.”                 (2 Timothy 4:2-4)

Welcome to another post in the category of posts entitled, ‘SERMON SUNDAY.’ Lord willing, at least a few times a month I will share a sermon with you by a well respected preacher who focuses on an important truth in Scripture in order to awaken the slumbering church, and also to alert Christians to the importance of reading and studying God’s Word. It may be a short sermon in written form, or I may present something to you in video form. I pray that when time allows, you will take the time to read or to listen to what I will be sharing with you.

I will also be sharing some expository preaching with you, but sadly, that is a very rare thing to find these days. I’m sure that many of you can attest to that undeniable fact. Sadly, many pastors today who seek to grow their churches oftentimes resort to distorting God’s Word either by taking a verse out of context, or by interjecting their own ideas into the text to make it say what they want a verse of Scripture to say (eisegesis). Sometimes a pastor will even go as far as to manipulate Scriptures in such a way so that they can preach about themselves (narcissistic eisegesis).

Then there are some pastors who just present watered down messages with very little Biblical content, and others who ‘preach’ controversial messages that will appeal to today’s culture in order to attract more people. Sadly they will continue ‘preaching’ these types of messages in order to entertain the crowd to keep them coming, rather than preaching God’s Word as they are instructed to do in order to feed and equip the sheep/saints and to expose the sin in men’s hearts so that God will grant them repentance and lead them to a knowledge of the truth.

My main goal in presenting these sermons to you is to point you to Jesus Christ and to make you realize the extreme importance of studying God’s Word and testing the teachings of everyone you listen to in light of Scripture.

Maybe you are one of those people who faithfully stand for Biblical truth and you recently had to leave your church because of what has been taking place as you have witnessed your pastor slowly drift from Biblical truth. Or maybe you left your church many years ago and you still haven’t found a church where the pastor preaches from God’s Word. If so, I have all of you in mind when posting these teachings and videos, as well.

For those who somehow find there way here, I hope and pray that you will be blessed and encouraged by the many Biblical teachings that I will be sharing with you in the weeks and months ahead –Lord willing.

Now for today’s SERMON SUNDAY:

In the video that you will find further below, you will hear Pastor Tom Stegall of Duluth Bible Church preaching from Psalm 42.

All of us at one time or another become discouraged because of the circumstances that we face in life, because of wrong choices that we may have made, or because of unjust things that may have happened to us in our past. Due to what many of us may have been taught in Psychology classes we oftentimes choose to shift the blame on to others for how our lives are now, instead of turning to God and placing our trust in Him and taking responsibility for some of the choices that we have made. These are just a few of the things that Pastor Tom will be addressing in his sermon. When time allows, please consider listening to his message. My prayer is that you will find hope in the midst of your circumstances and be encouraged as you hear God’s Word being preached.

Psalm 42

For the director of music. A maskil of the Sons of Korah.

As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.

My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?

My tears have been my food day and night,while people say to me all day long,  “Where is your God?”

These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go to the house of God under the protection of the Mighty One with shouts of joy and praise among the festive throng.

Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember you from the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar.

Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls;all your waves and breakers  have swept over me.

By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me— a prayer to the God of my life.

I say to God my Rock, “Why have you forgotten me?Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?”

10 My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me,saying to me all day long,  “Where is your God?”

11 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”

Video description:

“Tom Stegall encourages us to look to God by faith and rest in His promises when we’re feeling down or struggling with depression.”

And now here is Pastor Tom Stegall with today’s Sermon Sunday which is entitled, “An Uplook For The Downcast.” As always, please be sure to test everything in light of Scripture as we should always do when listening to someone teaching or preaching. (Acts 17:11, 1 Thessalonians 5:21,22)

Note: At one point in his message he briefly mentioned C S Lewis’ the Chronicles of Narnia which disappointed me, because, although many Christians speak highly of him and his writings, C S Lewis had many problematic teachings which I, Lord willing, will be addressing in an upcoming False Teacher Friday post later on this year.

Thank you very much for stopping by and taking time out of your relaxing weekend (at least I hope that it has been) to read some of my posts and poems.

God Bless You

Mary/Living4HisGlory

Save

Save

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Capture Catholic New Testament Bible and Catechism of the Catholic Church pic 1

As I have been sharing with you for well over a year or two now, the desire of my heart is to reach Catholics with the truth that I discovered as I read a little Catholic New Testament Bible — exactly like the one pictured above — so that Catholics can have an opportunity to discover the same truth that I did. As I read through the little Catholic New Testament Bible, God revealed to me through His Word who Jesus truly is! In the process He also shattered into pieces all the beliefs that I had held to be true for many years. Though I did learn that God loved me through the teachings of Catholicism, most of what I learned filled me with fear and never gave me any peace, hope, victory over sin, or assurance of salvation. However, as soon as I began to read what God’s Word had to say in the little Catholic New Testament Bible, hope began to rise within my heart. Dare I believe these things to be true? The more I read, the more faith began to grow within my heart and I chose to believe what God’s Word had to say over what I had learned in the Catholic religion during the twelve years of Catholic education that I received and the Catechism classes that I attended.

Due to the fact that my computer continues to crash when my posts get rather lengthy, I decided that instead of just one verrry long post, I am going to present you with a series of posts. If you are a Catholic, I hope that you will join me for this series. I must warn you though. At the end of this series you will find yourself having to make a decision; you will have to answer the same question that God strongly impressed upon my mind:

“ARE YOU GOING TO BELIEVE THE WORD OF GOD, OR THE WORD OF MAN?”

Together we will go chapter by chapter through the Catechism of the Catholic Church, but I will just be sharing the most important points from each chapter with you, and then I will share, in contrast, what God’s Word, the Bible, has to say on these same topics.

For those of you who are born-again Christians and are unaware of what the teachings of Catholicism are, I hope that you will also consider joining me for this series so that you can have an understanding of what the Catholic church actually teaches concerning Jesus, salvation, and more. You will then be able to share with your Catholic friends words of hope, and many Scriptures to show them that they can indeed have the assurance of salvation that they are longing for.

Dear Catholic, hope and assurance of salvation can be found in God’s Word and in Jesus Christ alone by having a godly sorrow for sin and placing one’s complete trust in what Jesus already did when He died on the cross in our place and completely satisfied God’s full wrath that He has towards us because of our sins.

There is nothing that this world has to offer that comes close to bringing true and everlasting joy and peace that comes when one places their trust in Jesus Christ! It is my prayer that many will come to the knowledge of the truth by reading God’s Word in these series of posts!

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

God Bless You

~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)

abandonment-8-5

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!

img002(One of my favorite Christmas pictures of my daughter and son when they were little).

INTRODUCTION

Making Christmas crafts with my children and decorating the tree together, staying up until 2 a.m. assembling and wrapping their presents after they were snuggled in their beds and fast asleep, remembering the joy on my precious children’s faces when they’d open their gifts on Christmas morning…these are just a few of the special memories of Christmas past.

Then there are the ones that still linger in my mind that bring feelings of heart-wrenching sadness, like the one Christmas when my son was older. It was around five or six years after his dad had left us. My daughter was playing either in her room or the family room to pass the time, while my son sat on the couch and waited patiently for his dad to come as he had told him and my daughter that he would. When minutes began to turn into hours, the sadness and disappointment that my son was feeling grew more evident on his face, and my heart broke for him. Then the phone rang, and his dad gave them both the frequently given reply on Christmas day:

“Dad can’t come today, but I’ll come and take you out during the week.”

Even though their dad did call them every day after he left, and came over twice a week to take them out, to tell your children that you are coming on Christmas day and to get their hopes up only to disappoint them, was cruel and totally uncalled for!

Christmas for me personally was very hard. Especially when I had to go to the mall and shop for gifts and watch many different men and women walking hand in hand and laughing together, and I was all alone, but still faithfully waiting and praying that my husband would return home and love me the way a husband is supposed to love his wife.

The Christmas before my ‘husband’ left, when things were tense and I was being completely rejected by him, temptation literally came knocking at our door:

It was about a week before Christmas, and it was after 10:00 p.m. Suddenly there was a knock at the door. As usual, my ‘husband’ was out with his friends, so I was not about to answer the door when I was home alone with two little kids. My daughter, who was nine years old at the time, but very wise for her age, kept telling me to open the door, and I kept telling her all the reasons why I shouldn’t. However, I gave in when she said, “Mommy, maybe God wants you to open the door.”  Hesitantly, I opened the door, keeping the screen door locked. There in front of me stood a tall, dark, and handsome man. He said,

“Hi. I know it’s late, but my car died out in front of your house, and I just wanted to let you know that I called the police to let them know, and I will be back tomorrow with a friend to help me get it started.”

I said, “Okay,” and closed the door. The verse “make the most of every opportunity” came to mind, and since it was almost Christmas and I had a box of New Testament Bibles and would give a New Testament to people who would come to my door whether they were Jehovah’s Witnesses or Mormons, or selling magazines or windows, etc., I decided to give him one, as well. After all, it couldn’t be a coincidence that his car just happened to die out in front of my house when his car could have died out a few houses further down the street. I knew that God wanted me to share the gospel with this man, so I wrote a short message inside of the New Testament that I was going to give him. I said something like this:

“I don’t know what you have gone through in life, but I know that it wasn’t a coincidence that your car happened to die out in front of my house. I believe that God allowed your car to die out in front of my house because He knew that I would be faithful to share His love and truth with you. He wants to bring healing to your broken heart and hope for your future that can only come by receiving His love and forgiveness.”

In my message I clearly shared the gospel with him, and included a tract, as well. In front of the Bible was a list of questions that led a person to the knowledge of the fact that we are all sinners in need of a Savior, and the need to repent of sin, and listed many Scriptures where these truths could be found. When I finished writing the letter, I put it inside of the Bible and wrapped it in Christmas paper so I would be ready for when he would return  with his friend the next day hoping to get his car started.

The next day he did return with his friend, and after his car started he came and knocked on our door to let us know. I then held out the wrapped Bible, and said, “This is for you.” He said,  “What’s this?” I said, “Well, it’s almost Christmas, and I wanted to give you this.” He looked stunned and appreciative as he took the package and thanked me and went to his car. I closed the door but stood there and prayed strongly as I watched him walk to his car through the tiny window in the door. He sat there for a while, so I figured he was opening his gift, so I closed my eyes and strongly began to pray for him. I prayed that God would prepare his heart and mind to receive the message of the gospel and all that I had shared with him. Suddenly, I heard the door bell ring, and opened the door to see him standing there. With tears in his eyes, he said, “How did you know?” He proceeded to tell me that he had been in Viet Nam and how when he came back his wife had left him. Everything that happened I recorded in my diary, but basically I said the following to him:

“I didn’t know. I just knew that God allowed your car to die out in front of my house and knew that He wanted me to give you a Bible and to tell you that He loves you.” 

His eyes filled with tears as he thanked me again, and he went back to his car and drove away.

Little did I know that he would return less than a year later, just a couple of months after my ‘husband’ left us. To make a loooong story short, he came to our door and said the following words to me:

“I thought about you a lot over the past year. I didn’t come back to start trouble; I just needed to come back to see if it was you, or Jesus in you that I was attracted to.”

I stood strong, and in my mind I kept saying, “Jesus in me! Jesus in me!” I loved and feared God too much to give in to temptation, and I loved my ‘husband’ in spite of how he treated me throughout our marriage to ever consider getting involved with another man when I was still married to him.

In an attempt to stop him from continuing to talk about me, I turned the focus of the conversation on to Jesus, and shared the gospel with him again, making it clear to him that we are all sinners in need of a Savior, so that he would see his need to turn from sin by having a true godly sorrow in his heart for the things he had done. I asked him if he would like to receive God’s love and forgiveness, by placing his complete trust in Jesus Christ alone for the forgiveness of his sins, and he said he did. I led him in a prayer, and he repeated it after me, and when we were done he looked as if the weight of the world had lifted off of his shoulders.

After encouraging him to continue reading the Bible, I tried to end our conversation so he would leave, because he was saying all kinds of things that every woman would like to hear. Especially a woman like me who rarely ever heard those kind of things from her husband; a ‘husband’ who had now left me. There was no sexual overtones to anything he said; he just made comments about the thoughts he had concerning me over the past year. Things like how he thought I was pretty, and how he thought about my “big brown eyes.” As I firmly tried to end our conversation, he handed me a ripped piece of paper with his phone number on it and told me that I could call him if I wanted to, and then he finally left.

I could have tried to justify calling him in my mind by telling myself that ‘he needs my guidance,’ but the  thought to do that never crossed my mind; I knew this would not be God’s will, and I would be setting myself up for temptations if I ever did. He was completely in God’s hands now. I never called him, and he never came to my home again. It was one of those opportunities that I made the most of, at a time when I could have been sad and depressed, but I chose instead to share the love of God and the gospel of grace, hope, and forgiveness with this heart-broken man. We as Christians need to see the opportunities that God sets before us, but we need to proceed with caution! We must use the opportunities that come our way with the desire to bring glory to God by constantly being led by His Spirit and not our flesh, because  Satan will try to use some of these opportunities that come our way in an attempt to destroy us (1 Peter 5:8) if we are not constantly in God’s Word and ignore the warnings clearly set forth in Scripture!

I praised God for the opportunity that He gave me that night, and still praise Him and stand in awe at how He arranged for this man’s car to die out in front of our house that night right before Christmas so many years ago!

 

RELATED SCRIPTURES

“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.” (Isaiah 43:18)

“Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:13b,14)

“Be very careful, then, how you live–not as unwise, but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:15,16)

“Be wise in the way you act towards outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” (Colossians 4:5,6)”Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him standing firm in the faith…” (1 Peter 5:8,9a)

“This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” (1 John 4:9,10)

“We know that we live in Him and He in us, because He has given us His Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent His Son to be the Savior of the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.” (1 John 4:13-16)

Scriptures taken from The Holy Bible New International Version® 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society.  Used by permission of Zondervan.  All rights reserved.

CHRISTMAS REFLECTIONS

The Christmas season has a way of bringing many memories to my mind

Some are precious moments tucked away, unchanged by time

Some are best forgotten, but they linger still the same

Some bring tears of joy, some still a hint of pain

Unmet expectations, hopes and dreams yet to be fulfilled

Sorrow grows within my heart, and yet, in a moment’s time, because of Christ, my

heart is stilled

I choose instead to reflect upon that holy night, so long ago

When God sent His only Son to redeem mankind, because He loved us so

I take time to reflect upon the moment, that He gave me eyes to see

His redemptive plan revealed in Scripture, His truth that set me free

It’s then my perspective changes, before my emotions send me spiraling out

of control

I choose instead to be led by His Spirit, to find someone who is broken of heart

and soul

Someone who needs to hear the gospel message, that brings hope, forgiveness,

and grace

A message that can set a captive free, and bring a heart-felt smile to light one’s face

Though there are many longings in my heart that still remain

From dwelling on thoughts that can lead to despair and hopelessness, I must choose

to refrain

As this year draws to an end, I reflect upon one thing I know to be true

That God’s love transcends any love I’ve ever known, for He came down to give

His life for me —and you

Copyright©2014 Mary K. Dalke/Living4HisGlory/Living For His Glory All rights reserved.

Updated January 5th, 2015 (Added more thoughts to my Introduction and another Scripture).

Thank you for stopping by! And thank you very much for taking the time to read some of my posts and poems.

A BLESSED HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL OF YOU!

God Bless You

~Mary/Living4HisGlory

 

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