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Sermon 121 – Consequences

This week Steve Smith was dismissed from the captaincy of the Australian Cricket team. He confessed to condoning the tampering of the ball by one of the other players during the third test against South Africa. The whole of Australia couldn’t believe we would cheat to win a sporting game. At his first interview, Steve admitted his mistake but expected to retain his position. He had not weighed up the consequences of his actions. He hadn’t considered that all Australians would be appalled and disheartened. That his young fans would be offended and disapprove in unbelief. That he would go from hero to villain. That the South Africans would boo him onto the field. That the media companies would withdraw their financial support. That the fans would boycott the future matches. That he would forever be remembered for his error of judgment. That he would lose his captaincy and be banned from playing for 12 months.

Pride blocks

Pride blocks you seeing the consequences. It can’t appreciate what it’s got, it can only see what it wants and what it isn’t getting. Pride doesn’t think it’s doing anything that bad. It questions any correction by an authority. It blames and TELLS you how to behave for its own benefit. It won’t really accept that it’s done anything that bad. It hates anyone higher or more successful than itself. It thinks it’s right. It refuses to lower its position.

Pride thinks there’ll be no consequences; only good thigs will happen to me. Pride thinks God loves me, so He’ll look after me and never let anything bad to happen to me. It doesn’t serve Christ for Christ’s sake, it expects Christ to serve them.

The old demonic trick of make them look bad so we don’t

Pride is designed to trap you into reacting against its stubborn resistance so that it spiritually controls you. Once you play ball with someone’s pride you are trapped in your own pride. I suspect the demonic spirit behind South Africa goaded the Australian vice-captain to retaliate to mocking taunts, so that he tempted the captain to coerce with his plan of ball-tampering so that the team would get caught in its own pride. I’ve seen and experienced many times where a demonic power working through someone, goads the person to react against it’s unfair injustice and once the person has reacted to the bait it then has the power to point the finger at your weakness and divert the attention off themselves. Demons take control over you by tempting you to fall to your pride.

The Pastor and the Painter

Journalist, Cindy Wockner, has written a book titled, the Pastor and the Painter. It tells the biography of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran from the moment they were arrested for drug smuggling in Indonesia, to the moment they were executed for the crime some 10 years later. In a television interview, Cindy describes the initial character of the two offenders as arrogant and insolent and disrespectful, without any remorse for their behaviour and offence, and without any agreement that they’d done wrong. She then goes on to say that after being in jail for over 6 years they both came to accept they that had done wrong. It was that decision that changed them from within to become responsible and remorseful for what they had done. They both changed and became genuinely Christ-like in their behaviour.

The key was accepting that they were wrong instead of being flippant about their deeds. Even so, they paid the ultimate consequence for their insolence.

2 thieves on the cross

In Luke 23:39 we read the reactions of the malefactors on the crosses next to Christ. One thief was only concerned about getting out of his problem and TOLD Jesus how to behave and fix it for him. He objected to the consequences. Demonic spirits always TELL you and blame you for their problem even though it’s obvious they, themselves, created the problem. Notice that Jesus didn’t play ball with this thief. He wouldn’t let His Spirit get trapped into His pride by demonic temptation. The enemy was still working his temptations right up to the end.

The other thief stood up for Jesus and rebuked the arrogant thief. He lowered his pride, accepted that he deserved the punishment, opened his heart to Christ, and was immediately saved for eternity. Most people lie or say sorry to avoid the consequences. They’ll never find Christ. It’s lowering your pride that saves you; you’re not saved by being good.

How do you know whether your pride has been put in its place?

You’ll have your pride in its place when you take full responsibility for it as evidenced by not blaming someone else or defending your position. When you’re willing to take the consequences and punishment. Steve Smith humbled himself. The consequences opened up his eyes to his sin and caused him to lower his position and give up his pride. On the other hand, Barnaby Joyce (Australia’s ex-deputy Prime minister) refuses to accept the consequences. Mr. Joyce doesn’t think his private life is anyone else’s business. He’s wrong. When you’re in public office, everything is the public’s business. Let me ask … did Mr. Joyce deceive his wife by having an adulterous affair behind her back? The answer is obviously, yes. That means that Mr. Joyce is a deceiver. Now, if you are going to deceive your wife, then you are going to be deceptive in your parliamentary position and to the public in general. If you treat your marriage vows with deceit, then that’s how you’ll treat your parliamentary vows.

What you practice is who you are

Why are most people afraid to kill someone? I suggest, because they are afraid of the consequences. If God considers that envy and hatred is murder (1 John 3:15), then why are Christians casual about practicing it? I suggest, because they are not afraid of the consequences. They don’t think it can been seen so they deduce they can get away with it; besides everyone else is doing it. If you have little concern of God’s punishment, then you’ll be flippant about your pride.

Casual about the consequences, casual about Christ.

Modern society has banished corporal punishment. The problem with this philosophy is that when you remove discipline you teach the child that there are no serious consequences for doing wrong. Eventually, you breed defiance, rebellion and anarchy. Young people today won’t be told, and laws are changed to suit the casual wants.

One of the fruits of our modern society is casual divorce. The law gives you the legal right to disrespect your vows. These vows are made before God, for better for worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and health, till death us do part. There’s only two grounds for righteous divorce, and that’s adultery or death. Now if the country gives you the right to divorce because you don’t like your spouse anymore, then that country is defying the Word of God and encouraging you to be a vow-breaker. Therefore, that parliament itself, is a vow-breaker. No wonder no one trusts a politician; they just don’t realise that you vote into power what you are yourself.

Christians make a vow to God

You show what character of person you really are by how much you honour your marriage vows to Christ. If you’re casual about your marriage vows you’ll walk away from your relationship based on your moodiness and pride, and Satan wins. If you’re prepared to walk away from your marriage and defy your vows to God, then you’ll do the same with your vow to God to serve him as a Christian. A Christian makes a vow to God, his husband, for better for worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part; but fake Christians object when things are worse or poor or sick. They’re not really committed to the vows; they’re truce-breakers; they’re liars, easily deceived by the enemy and deserters of the army, and unfortunately, our modern churches breed them in multiple numbers, by pretence and the prosperity lies.

The Ten Commandments stand behind your marriage vows to Christ

The fake modern church is casual about the ten commandments. They casually practice envy, hate and coveting; they lie to protect themselves; they shop, restaurant and sport on God’s sabbath; they merchandise their music; they practice immoral sex; they practice divorce; they practice adultery; they disrespect authority; they think themselves, special; they worship God and love the things of the world at the same time.

If you’re casual about His commandments, you’re casual about your vows and casual about your love for Christ. You can act committed like Mr. Joyce, but it’s all a lie. What you fail to realise is that the consequence of this casualness is hell, not heaven. If you’re casual about your vows then you’re not married to Christ. The relationship was never consummated.

I keep His commandments because I love Him, not because I fear Him; but I fear Him because I love Him.

 

Pastor Nick Clarence

 

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Posted by on March 31, 2018 in Pride

 

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Sermon 119 – The Hatred of Feel-Good

Time and time again I’ve watched Christians chase the god of “feel good”. The priority of their life is to feel good, and to feel happy. The church has told the people that God makes you feel good; He makes you happy, so people come to church looking for the happiness because their life is empty. They want some value, some love, some warmth, some purpose, something that will fill the void, and the church promises it in Jesus, but the people can’t find it.

The world is chasing the same mirage

Everyone is looking for the good feelings. So, if you’re doing the same then you’re of the world, not of Christ. You may not be into drugs, sex, and alcohol, but if you’re chasing it through acceptable Christian means such as friends, success, money, or position, then it’s the same outcome of vanity.

God says … love not the world nor the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world then the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world (lust of the flesh and eyes and pride of life) is not of the Father, but is the world. The world passes away and the lusts thereof, but he that does the will of God shall abide forever … 1 John 2:15-17

If God’s good, then surely He wants me to be happy

Godless Christians conveniently assume that God’s into good feelings and thus selfishly expect that getting good feelings is God’s way for them. Thus, they judge others by whether they make them feel good or bad, and they make deductions based on whether it feels good or not.

Use the happy lie to control others

Ultimately, this deduction process gives selfishness the right to always feel good and consequently these people control everyone and everything around them so that their objective of feeling good is always achieved. They end up convincing themselves that they’re always good and always right. In reality, this person does whatever they want as long as it makes them feel good. Thus, when they’re corrected and put in their place, they object to the correction because it doesn’t gel with their feel-good rights. They assume they’re correctable, but at the intersection of correction they object. Thus, they fail to take responsibility for their sin; preferring to excuse away their wrong by conversely judging the corrector as wrong because he made them feel bad. They then look for faults in the corrector to justify their often polite but resistant defiance.

God’s formula for your feelings

God doesn’t promise happy feelings here on earth. That’s part of His heavenly kingdom. He promises life through pain which is why people chasing happy can’t find Him, and that’s why it’s called the narrow way, because few want to travel that path.

If any man will follow Me, let him DENY himself, take up his cross DAILY, and follow Me. Luke 9:23

God is the judge, not you

God doesn’t judge you for your sin, because the wages for sin is already hell. He judges you for your repentance, so He can save you from this hell judgment. It’s His blood that cleanses the repentant sinner, not your apology or penance. He does punish you for sin to wake you to righteousness. He punished David for his sin but saved him for eternity because of his repentance, whereas, God let the sin of King Saul drift and saw him miss heaven, for hell.

No correction; no salvation

Correction is a painful experience, Hebrew 12:6. It has to be or it isn’t correction. It’s painful because it’s hurting your pride. If you’re into feel-good, you’re going to diffuse the correction with excuses and thus you’ll fall for the satanic tactic of feel-good so you’re blocked from heaven. Instead of addressing your pride you’ll reinforce it.

If at the point of righteous correction, you fail to bend your spirit to own your sin, you lose the right to stay on the Vine. Adam and Eve were removed from the Garden, not because they sinned, but because they chose to blame rather than bend. The same is true of King Saul, whereas, David repented.

If you endure chastening, God deals with you as a son. If you are without chastening, then you’re a bastard and not a son, Hebrews 12:7,8.

The search for life and value is only found when the vanity of feelings is sacrificed for His will.

Envy

The world and the false church can’t help being envious of those that have found the “good”. Eventually, their envy and anger will be exposed against those who have a real relationship with Christ, simply because others seem to have got the ‘good’, and they haven’t and can’t seem to get it. In their heart they hate those who have the heart of the Father. God calls this murder, and thus they inadvertently pronounce hell judgment on their own head.

If you’re in Christ, you don’t have to say anything, the godless church will hate you because they envy the peace of Christ in your heart, irrespective of the circumstances around you. It’s exactly what they’re looking for but can’t find it because they’re not really looking for Christ but rather they’re chasing the good-feel.

I’m always right, so if you think I’m not, you’re the one that’s wrong

I recall a young Christian who seemed to have all the facets of being genuine, including generosity and helps. In time, however, correction exposed the falseness of his spirit. He pretended to be a Christian but he wasn’t. The problem was he had convinced himself about his own goodness to the point that he honestly believed he was never wrong; everyone else was.  Thus, he could never hear the truth about himself; he could only see the fakeness in everyone else. This is a satanic imagination that blocks the correction which would get you back onto the right path, so you continue on the path to hell; and unfortunately, it’s all too common.

Fake goodness is always to gain self-value; never for Christ.

Hated because you love Christ

A genuine Christian doesn’t have to chase the feeling of good and happiness. They know they’re in- Christ and the feelings are irrelevant. Their spirit is content in the knowledge of His grace upon them and learns to rest in His abiding love.  The spirit of the world is satanic; thus, the world and the fake church will automatically hate them just like they hated the Master. This hatred is designed to put you in fear and force you to give up the fight, but if you face the temptation to go the easy path, this hatred is actually the confirmation of the genuineness of the connection between the true servant and His Lord.

The Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God; and if children, then joint heirs with Christ, if so be that we suffer with Him, that we may be glorified with Him.  Romans 8:16

Hatred is the gel that connects you to Christ

Goodness is not the sign of Christ. Non-Christians can act good. Hatred is the sign. If you want to walk with Christ you have to accept the hatred that will be fired at you. You can’t do this if you’re chasing good feelings. The good-feelers will often be the ones that throw the hatred. The purpose of being hated is to see if you will suffer with Christ or defend yourself against the injustice by throwing the hatred back. Hatred for Christ is the blessing Jesus talks about in Matthew 5. It’s the common denominator with Christ and the evidence of your love for Him and His love for you.

 

May the remnant sense His presence no matter the pain and burden of the attacks against their spirit.

 

Pastor Nick Clarence

 
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Posted by on February 24, 2018 in Correction, Happy

 

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Sermon 116 – I want something you’ve got & I’ve never had

Joash

In 2 Chronicles 22:10 – 24:27, we read the story of Joash. Queen Athaliah was evil through and through, but King Joash looked good and acted good. Athaliah had taken the throne by killing all the king’s seed but Joash escaped thanks to the actions of his aunt. He was hidden for 7 years in the temple with the family of Jehoiada the priest. Jehoiada was a Godly man. After 7 years, he initiated the coronation of Joash and oversaw the destruction and death of wicked Athaliah. Whilst Joash acted respectful of the authority of Jehoiada the priest, he behaved Godly and righteous.

However, his true heart was exposed when he listened to the flattery of demonised voices (24:17). He had become KING. Position had stolen his head and heart. He lost his appreciation for being saved from death. All that was required was a bit of flattery and he was gone. He turned against God and worshipped other gods. He was challenged by the new priest Zechariah, the son of Jehoiada, with whom he has spent his childhood. His response was … how dare you tell me what to do, and he had Zechariah stoned to death.

Knowing the heart of man, I suggest he envied the son’s relationship with his father, something he had never had himself. He had everything but he wasn’t satisfied. He wanted what he’d never had and couldn’t seem to get. He wanted what the son had, and besides it’s a good thing to seek, he told himself. His actions flowed from this hidden envy. You can seem to get away with envy because it’s a hidden emotion, but eventually it will be exposed.

How did Joash express his appreciation to Jehoida?

Joash showed his appreciation for being saved from death by Jehoida by killing his son. That’s not love and it’s surely not an expression of any appreciation. His actions in the beginning may have seemed good, but I suggest he was just trying to impress Jehoiada. The envy of his heart fed the desire for position and puffed him up. If you allow your heart to be envious you’ll strive to position yourself above those you envy and you’ll lose your soul.

You can separate yourself from this story and say I wouldn’t do that, but the truth is, the moment you judge your fellowman, you have done it. You can’t say you love God and put yourself up above your fellowman. That’s not love. In fact, God calls it murder (1 John 3:15).

God is love (1 John 4:8)

You can only have a relationship with God on the basis of love. Without faith, which works by love, it’s impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6), and whatever is not of love is sin (Romans 14:23).

Goodness is not necessarily love

Love is not expressed by good deeds or generosity. Anyone can fake that. It has to flow from deep appreciation first, without envy. You can’t get the Father’s love by trying to be good enough; that’s selfish.

Love flows from your deep appreciation for what God did when he sacrificed His only Son for your salvation. This love is expressed by your appreciation for his sacrifice. From this appreciation flows generosity and good deeds. Without the appreciation your good deeds are bad, not good.

The heart of man wants position and value

Ever since the Garden of Eden, the heart of man is born in sin. It’s born under the influence of Satan. This heart has to be replaced with a new heart of love, not goodness. You can fake goodness. If Joash truly loved God he would never have turned against Him and worshipped other gods, nor killed the son of the man who saved him. In the same manner, if you truly love God you will never allow your heart to envy your fellowman. You have to daily fight yourself to do this otherwise the voices will deceive you into evil.

Voices

Like Joash, we’re all susceptible to the demonic voices of guilt and flattery. Listening to demonic voices will turn your heart. You can act loving, but sooner or later demonic voices will expose your true heart.

Most people measure themselves by their good

Most people think that their goodness is love. The problem is, most good is selfish and therefore evil. Most people do good so they feel valued in themselves and valued in the eyes of others. They do good so they will be liked for their goodness. They do good so you will be good to them. They do good because it’s the right thing to do. They do good so they won’t be punished for doing bad. Their goodness is manipulated by fear, pride and greed. Their good is rarely motivated by appreciation, and if it is, it’s usually contaminated with self-value.

You don’t do good to get good things in return. That’s not good; that’s greed. That’s why Santa Claus is a lie. You do good as an expression of appreciation for God’s sacrifice.

So how do we know if our good is love based or selfish based?

1 Corinthians 13: 3, 4

Love is not envious. Love is not puffed-up. Love does not vaunt itself. Love is not measured by helps and generosity (v.3); it’s measured by how you view your fellowman.

Jesus gave up His position to save you and me. He suffered an unjustified death for you and me, and if you love Him for doing that then there’s no need to envy. Envy proves you are faking it.

How do you express your appreciation?

If you love God, you love to do what He instructs. You can’t say you love God and envy your fellowman; that’s opposite His instructions. You can’t say you love God and puff yourself up with your own importance. You can’t say you love God and seek position. You can’t say you love God and disrespect authority. You can’t say you appreciate everything He’s done for you and abuse His sabbath or commit adultery in your heart.

If you truly love God, you won’t let your heart lust after its own selfishness.

Love follows the character of Christ. He humbled Himself and became a servant and obedient unto death (Philippians 2). If you practice goodness with a hidden agenda of position, then you’re opposite to Christ and not of Christ.

Love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and love your neighbour as yourself.

Your expression of appreciation for God’s love towards you is measured by your judgment of your fellowman. Why? If you love God then you will automatically value and respect His creation, your fellowman. That means you won’t envy your fellowman. You won’t want what he has or who he is, or how high up the ladder he becomes. If you do good to your fellowman without the love of God, it’s not good; it’s actually selfishness.

If you’re a true pastor you have to be willing to suffer like Jehoiada and Zechariah

Time and time again, as a pastor, like Jehoiada, I have shown the love of God to many people. As a general rule, these people show their appreciation with helps and generosity; that is until I challenge them about their true heart.

On many occasions, I’ve invited people into my family to save their spirit. In time, I’ve had these same people say to my face … if you’re my pastor then I expect you to treat me with the same love and value as you love and value your daughter. This is not a sign of loving appreciation, but demonic control.

You can’t say you honour the pastor but then behind his back you envy his love for his son and want it for yourself. You can’t say you respect the pastor and then behind his back you envy the love he has for his wife and want it for yourself. You can’t say you cherish the pastor and at the same time wish you were loved the same as he loves his daughter, and in the same way, you can’t say to God that you love Him and behind His back envy His love towards someone else.

Love doesn’t envy. Love doesn’t puff itself up. Love shows its appreciation by thanking God for blessing other people and not expecting it for myself.

Satan wants Jesus’ position so he can take God, the Father’s, position. When you do the same you show your true heart is with Satan. Anyone who practices love with envy is under the control of a demonic lying spirit … looks good on the outside, but rotten within.

James 3: 14-18

James 3 declares that where bitter envy exists there is lying and demonic, confusion and every evil work. Eventually, like Joash, the true heart of a fake Christian will be exposed at a point of correction and they will no longer be easily entreated, but resistant to correction and thus be exposed as a bastard (half in the family and half out).

Love doesn’t practice envy; it’s too engrossed in gratitude to consider it. But, the irony is, when you practice God’s love, your fellowman will hate you because you’ll have something that they want and haven’t got.

For God’s sake, God’s remnant must learn to suffer the envy and hypocrisy of fake love from so-called Christians under the influence of Satan. That’s His secret plan.

 

Pastor John Cormack

 
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Posted by on January 13, 2018 in Love

 

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Sermon 115 – I’m Special vs I’m Dead

I was counselling a fellowship member who was struggling with a grievance against someone who had used her. I asked her to write down the definition of “grievance”. She defined it as ‘hurt feelings when someone does something to offend you.’

A personal definition

I suggested a different definition … ‘I think I’m special and you’re making me feel unspecial.’ Suddenly her eyes were opened and she realised that, although she had tried to repent of her feelings and to forgive the perpetrator, she still wasn’t free because the issue was not her feelings but her pride.

You can’t repent of your mood or ungodly reaction, without forgiving, and you can’t forgive whilst still holding a grievance. Most Christians live in a vacuum of false forgiveness, still holding onto the unfairness of their treatment, but, with time, settle their feelings so they think it’s all resolved.

Every Christian should look at their definition of “guilt” and “envy” in the same light. The personal definition for guilt is … ‘I think I’m a good person but you’re making me feel bad.’ And of envy … “I’m special, how come you got it and not me.”

Whenever pride is in the picture, blame and envy are the fruit

In Exodus 32 we read the story of the golden calf. The people were frustrated that Moses had not returned from meeting with God, so they persuaded Aaron to create a new god for them. Aaron didn’t even seem to baulk. He gathered their gold pieces together and threw them into the furnace and out came a golden calf, and they worshipped the Lord by sacrificing to the calf. How crazy is that? Not only that, but Aaron got them to be naked.

How could Aaron be so far out of alignment?

The answer is … I think I’m special, too, Moses. He had allowed the voice of temptation to infiltrate his spirit, and behind the scenes he had envied Moses’ miraculous ability. Aaron was on his way to hell. The only thing that stopped him from falling into hell was the prayer of Moses (Deuteronomy 9:20). God changed His mind about the destruction of the people and Aaron simply because Moses didn’t think he was special.

You won’t find the Holy Spirit thinking He is special

In Mark 3 we read a contrasting story about Jesus healing the man with the withered hand. The Pharisees were watching Him to see if He would heal on the Sabbath. Jesus angrily rebuked them and then healed the man’s hand. The Pharisees’ response was to go to the Romans and jointly plot Jesus’ death.

In other words, the church joined with the world for the destruction of the Creator. Why? Simply because Jesus could do things that they couldn’t, so they had to get rid of Him.

Jesus’ response was not … I think I’m special, so you have no right to tell Me what’s right or wrong. Rather, His response was … just keep doing what the Father wants. How was He able to turn off the hurt of their offense? Simple … He was dead to Himself.

How do we die to ourselves?

First of all, open your eyes to your human envy, and when you see it, repent of your sin. Any blame, any mood, any envy is simply the fruit of … I think I’m special. Whilst you think you’re special you will never access heaven. Like Aaron and the Pharisees, you can be in an important position in the church system, but your blindness to your envy will prosper the work of demons in you and you will fall into hell. Sooner or later, like Aaron, immorality will creep into your heart, and eventually, like the Pharisees, your envy will turn against Christ’s remnant with the blasphemy of thinking that the spirit in them is Beelzebub (Mark 3:22-30).

If you’re dead, there’s no mood or blame or envy, but only if you’re dead. If you’re dead, the Spirit of God protects your hurts and feelings because your faith and trust is wholly in Him.

Salvation isn’t by works or position

Salvation is only via death. To be reborn you have to die to yourself. Unless you die you can never be reborn. This principle is seen in a seed. For a seed to produce a tree it first has to die before it can germinate. This is the picture of Jesus the Seed of the Word of God. He died that all who die with Him could live.

In Luke 14:26 we read that … to be a disciple you actually have to hate yourself (not love yourself) and take up your cross (die to your selfishness) daily. This means that your self is of no value when it comes to servitude for Christ. He only is my life, not me.

That’s why Paul wrote … I am crucified with Christ. Nevertheless, I live, yet not I but Christ lives in me, and the life that I now live I live by the faith of the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me.

You can only access heaven through death, not works. In John 15, Jesus said … the world will hate you because it hated Me. The world will persecute you because it persecuted Me. A follower of Christ is not exempt from being hated; rather, if he is not hated then he is not a follower of Christ … for all that live Godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution (2 Timothy 3:12). Why? Because the church and the world will hate the different Spirit in you.

One clear piece of evidence that you are reborn is …

I’m no longer special, the only thing I’m interested in is knowing Him and serving Him.

 

May God open the eyes of His remnant to not be deceived by the false blessing philosophy that a Christian is a son who gets the deal.

 

Pastor Paul Justica

 

 
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Posted by on October 7, 2017 in Death

 

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Sermon 107 – The Art of Christianity

Several years ago, a seemingly nice young man joined our fellowship. From all appearances he had everything … a well-paid job, a girlfriend, a nice car, plus our supportive fellowship. He attached himself to my family and we befriended him as a son. On the outside he appeared generous and helpful and appreciative, but there came a point where he didn’t like my judgment over a particular issue and a different spirit was revealed.

Over the years we had seen an old nature side to this young man that I often had to challenge. He often displayed envy towards my son. He regarded anyone who didn’t agree with his thinking as an idiot, and he was often casual and flippant with my instructions and ended up doing it his own way in his own time. On top of this, he had deduced that when I preached about bearing your cross, to him it meant having to tolerate the people God had put around him. These were the deductions of his youth and unfortunately, when they were exposed to him as sin, instead of repenting, he simply re-packaged them, and referred to them whenever he selected to. He had simply learnt the art of smoothness and coupled it together with the art of Christianity, and convinced himself that his generosity and helps proved he was a Christian.

In the course of time, his envy of my son, and his pompous intolerance of people, resulted in his heart lusting after the relationship I had with my son and family. From his position he didn’t think it was fair that I should love my son more than him. Eventually, he deduced that if he couldn’t have what my son had then he would copy my love and impose his control through his generosity onto another well-like family in our fellowship. Ultimately, God removed him and separated him from our fellowship.

As a pastor, I’ve seen this pattern of behaviour in so-called Christians far too often. I’m reminded of Ezekiel 33:31,32 … they come unto you as the people come and they sit before you as my people and they hear your words, but they will not do them; for with their mouth they show much love, but their heart goes after their covetousness. And lo, you are unto them a very lovely song of one that has a pleasant voice and can play well on an instrument, for they hear your words but they do them not.

Warning

As I often warn my fellowship, the envy that’s inherent in the heart of man must be killed by your unconditional surrender to the will of God. Otherwise, this envy in your heart will fester and then everything you build your thinking on, everything you think is good and right, will really be false and sinking sand. Envy turns your thinking against the righteous, and like Simon the sorcerer, it ends up trying to buy or copy what’s in the heart of a righteous man. On the foundation of envy, sorry is never repentance, but just a quick way to escape embarrassment.

Tolerate

Unrighteous tolerance towards people is bearing people’s nonsense with spite and belittlement in your heart. It’s evidence that your heart is evil. Unrighteous tolerance is really a pompous snub towards God’s human creation and the selfish opposite of willing to serve God wherever and with whoever. The Holy Spirit doesn’t tolerate people with spite in His heart; He serves the will of God. When you allow yourself the privilege of feeling untolerated by someone, you’re simply living in the lie of your own imagination built on the foundation of your spiteful intolerance towards everyone else, but cleverly camouflaged by your coolness or niceness which is really the symptom of your own intolerance.

The evil vineyard keeper

In Matthew 21:33, we read the story of the evil vineyard keeper. Instead of the vineyard keeper being ever grateful for the opportunity to serve the Lord of the vineyard, he resented the fact that the Lord owned the vineyard and he had to work it. It wasn’t fair. When the son came to oversee the operation of the vineyard, instead of showing respect, they killed him with the stupid expectation of taking possession of the vineyard. But God isn’t gentle, meek and mild when it comes to justice and righteous vengeance. He kills the evil.

Biblical warnings

Of course, this is a parable of Satan’s grievance with God for not recognising him equal to or above Jesus His son. But it’s more than that. Anyone who wants what the Son has, is born of Satan, not God. Anyone who wants what the Son can give him is of the spirit of anti-christ. Anyone who wants what anyone else has, is an anti-christ. John warns us about such spirits. Jude seriously warns us about such spirits. James warns us about such spirits. Peter warns us about such spirits, and Paul warns us about such spirits. In fact, most of the bible, both old and new testaments are actually warnings about falling into league with Satan’s spies in the church. The warnings are real and even more pertinent for the remnant today.

Too many so-called Christians are working the Lord’s vineyard with resentment in their spirits and for the purpose of being recognised and acknowledged and valued. They’re instruments of Satan, not Christ. Too many Christians are practicing the art of Christianity without the heart of Christ. They’re not converted and they’re not saved. They’re enemies of Christ and their purpose is to divide, conquer and ultimately destroy and take over what you have. It’s tricky because they’re in sheep’s clothing.

Do you honestly think that Satan wouldn’t strike the heart of God’s people just as effectively within the church as outside it? Guerrilla warfare is far more effective than a direct frontal assault.

The two characters of a demonic spirit

One side of a demonic spirit can be generous, helpful and cooperative. That’s just a smoke screen. The true side of a spirit is seen when it eventually gets puffed up, expects to be valued, then unexpectantly gets corrected or put in its place for its inappropriate attitude. Like Samuel vs King Saul, you’ll know when you’re up against a spirit when it resists your correction, starts telling you how you are supposed to behave towards it, and wants to retain its position in the eyes of the people. Eventually, if you hold a righteous position in Christ, the scam is exposed and the true spirit gets revealed.

The battleground

Ephesians 6 teaches us that we are not fighting flesh and blood but demonic principalities and evil powers. The church teaches that these forces are external, but that’s the secondary battleground. The primary battleground is within us. It’s the battle between the forces of righteousness and the forces of unrighteousness. Once we concede to the cares of the world, the deceitfulness of riches, the lusts of the eyes, the lusts of the flesh or the pride of life, then the force of righteousness is choked (Mark 4:19) and is only restored through sincere repentance.

The fight has intensified. Not a day goes by without hearing of some disaster or an increase in moral decay, suggesting that the end is nearer than we imagine, Matthew 24:7.

Hold firm your position in Christ and don’t worry about the world, nor lean on the world.

 

May God strengthen His remnant for His plan and purposes.

 

Pastor Norm Wakefield

 

 

 
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Posted by on October 12, 2016 in Deception

 

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Sermon 106 – Gall of Bitterness

For the past decade I’ve had an intermittent dull ache under my rib cage on the right-hand side of my body. As a Natural Therapist I’m aware that such a symptom indicates liver/gall bladder dysfunction of some kind. I’ve learnt to restrict my diet and not eat fast foods, fatty foods, peanuts and dairy. They all upset my liver. I’ve been the medical examination route of ultrasound, blood tests for liver function, and x-rays with radioactive dyes, but they all showed negative results. Finally, my GP suggested surgical removal of my gall bladder.

I’ve learnt that removal of the gallbladder often doesn’t solve the problem but rather creates alternate problems. I wasn’t interested in such a radical solution. I finally decided to attempt a gallbladder cleanse using apple juice, Epsom salts and olive oil. I was very hesitant and cautious about the effectiveness of the process but I decided I had no other alternative. The symptoms were getting worse. To my utter astonishment I passed more than 100 stones. I was elated at the prospect of restored health.

Neurological connections between emotions and organs

When you get scared, your body reacts with what medicine calls the ‘fear/ flight’ syndrome. Your muscles and organs tense for running from whatever it is that causing the fear.

I know as a natural therapist that the gallbladder is neurologically affected by the mental emotion of bitterness, and the liver is affected by the emotion of anger. There’s no way that persistent bitterness and anger will not have negative effects on your biological system. You will not be aware of the side-effect of such emotions but your body has to absorb them somehow. My gallstones could either mean I was full of bitterness myself or that I was bearing the burden of others’ bitterness against me.

Simon, the sorcerer

The whole exercise reminded me of Simon, in Acts chapter 8. He used sorcery to make himself look great in the eyes of others, v.9.

By God’s grace, when Philip preached, the bewitching power over the people’s minds was broken. They switched allegiance and this stirred Simon to switch with them. Simon was looking for the trick that Philip used to cause the people to switch, so he hung around Philip to try and pick up the clues. Further analysis shows that his motive for becoming a Christian was for personal gain. He was really just looking for whatever way he could to retain his superiority and control over others.

Peter and John turned up and laid hands on those who had converted to Christ. Obviously, they responded to the Holy Spirit’s anointing by most probably speaking in foreign languages. Simon was desperate to have the equivalent power, so he tried to purchase it with money, v.20. He was immediately exposed as a fraud.

Peter challenged Simon to repent of the thought of his heart and declared that Simon was caught up in the gall of bitterness.

What does this mean to us?

  1. If you allow yourself to get caught up in the desire to be great in the eyes of others, you’ll end up with spiritual gallstones.
  2. If you envy others for having more power or position than you, you’ll end up with spiritual gallstones.
  3. Eventually, either on earth, or before the Lord, you’ll be exposed as a fraud.

Sadly, my pastoral experience has confirmed that most modern-day Christians are fraudulent, just like Simon. Most are into Christianity for their own selfish gain. The power of the demonic is becoming more and more openly exposed. Most, like Simon, are serving God under the power of demonic spirits for their own gain.

Spiritual gallstones

The liver produces bile salts which are stored in the gall bladder and automatically ejected into the duodenum whenever you eat fatty food. The bile salts help break down the fats. Bile salts are made up of cholesterol. When your liver malfunctions due to chronic stress or disease, the gallbladder gets congested with bile salts and gradually these salts harden into stones of varying sizes. Gallbladder removal in this modern generation is now extremely common. There’s a lot of bitter people out there.

Besides the stones, and besides the liver struggling to perform its blood cleansing process, the serious problem is the cholesterol. Bad cholesterol will clog arteries and consequently contribute to heart attacks and strokes. It’s dangerous to be bitter.

In the same way, if you let bitterness into your heart, you invariably won’t know, but it will be subtly killing you.

Test

You can test yourself by honestly observing your emotions when someone else gets the accolades; when someone else gets the better deal; when someone else gets greater happiness or money or relationships. Any sense of a feeling of unfairness is a sure sign of spiritual gallstones.

Example

I was counselling a young man who said he was a Christian, but his single-parent mother was struggling with his defiance and bad attitude. When I suggested that he repay the money he had sponged off her, and put his head down and work to his ability at school, he ran off in one big mood saying “it’s all too hard”. Right there and then, he had the opportunity to break free from demonic spirits, but his selfishness was too strong.

His philosophy was … if you’re bad you can’t tell me to be good; and if you’re bad, I have the right to be bad too. This is just blaming others so you can make excuses for your own evil behaviour. Why doesn’t he have the philosophy of … if you’re bad, I’m going to be good. Obviously, he prefers to be bad, and he’s looking for any excuse to achieve it.

Knowing of his background, I could see that his behaviour was simply built on the envy that his brother was more liked by his father. Instead of being grateful for what had been done for him and given to him, he had chosen the path of envy and had started practicing mind control over people in order to get his way. He had inadvertently surrendered to Satan. He was silently producing spiritual gallstones which would one day kill him.

Warning

In this modern world that is becoming more and more worldly and less and less moral and less and less respectful of authority, stay true to the Word of God, even if you’re alone, or the empowerment of demonic spirits will latch onto your bitterness and lead you on the broad way to destruction.

 

May God strengthen his remnant to stay true to His call.

 

Pastor James McNaughton

 
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Posted by on September 24, 2016 in Bitterness

 

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Sermon 105 – Demons love a Sugar Fix

Humans love sugar … chocolate, ice cream, coca cola, cakes, biscuits etc.

Sugar makes you feel good.

The problem is that when you eat too much sugar, the sugar is converted by your liver into fats. It’s the sugar that causing the western world’s obesity epidemic.

Demons love sugar too. They crave it. They manoeuvre wherever they can to get it. They fight over each other for it.

I’m not talking about the natural carbohydrate; I’m talking about “pride”. Pride is the sugar fix that demons get off on. Without pride, demons are lost. They might kill you like they did Jesus, but they can’t win. They can only have power over you through the door of your pride. This is the very reason why Jesus said in Luke 14 that a true disciple must die to themselves. Spiritual death really means that you have surrendered everything to the will of the Father, like Christ, and thus when you’re tempted to think you are special, or capable, or intelligent, or better or envious of your fellow-man, the Holy Spirit gives you the power to resist the selfish temptation to fall to your pride so that demons don’t have the upper hand in the battle against the kingdom of God.

Satanic currency

Satan hated the fact that Jesus was more favoured by the Father; thus he instigated the currency of pride. He sold this currency to humankind when he tempted Eve to reach for pride. She took it and it tasted like sugar, but it actually turned to fat. Once man fell to pride he inherently practiced fear, lying, blame and murder. Adam and Eve attacked each other with their words and Cain killed Abel. We’re all born under this satanic infection of sin and it’s a fight for our salvation to escape this disease of pride.

Jesus only

There’s only one escape from this disease and it’s only through the door of the blood of Jesus Christ. Jesus said … I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, no one comes to the Father but by Me (John 14:6); not Mary, not Mohammed, not Allah, only Jesus Christ. And that door can only be opened when you fully surrender to the will of the Father, not by words but by actions.

Jezebel

In 1 Kings 21 we read the story of King Ahab envying the vineyard of Naboth. Instead of being grateful for the garden he had, he wanted better. He inherited this disease from Eve who obviously did the same thing. He then went and had a big mood which was designed to manipulate others to feel sorry for him and to give him what he wanted. Sound familiar?

Jezebel, his wife, came to the rescue, and plotted a plan of perjury that resulted in Naboth being unjustly stoned. Ahab got what he wanted. But it backfired. Eventually God raised up Jehu who killed the sons of the king and finally Jezebel despite her attempts to woo him with her cosmetic face paint. Then Jehu also lost his way because he let his pride fill him with his own importance. Behind all this, demons were actively destroying God’s special human creation by simply activating their pride.

Satan hates God’s authority

Like Eve in the Garden and Jezebel in Jezreel, once a woman chooses pride she will be used by Satan to envy other women and destroy males. Generally, they’re not doing this deliberately or knowingly, they unwittingly become instruments of Satan even though they’re outwardly covered in goodness. Satan hates authority, so deep in the inherent spirit of a woman is the hatred of man’s position over them. The only way this hatred is retained in its proper box is if the man stands for righteousness on the principles of God’s commandments. If he falters to his pride he will also falter to the woman’s wishes instead of God’s will, and the woman will take the man to hell, just like Adam who was separated from God and the Garden.

It was the spirit behind Jezebel that stirred up Ahab (1Kings 21:25). Consequently, because Ahab chose pride he was subject to Jezebelic demons even though from his perspective nothing could touch him because he was the king. But that’s what pride does; it tricks you into your own deception of being your own king.

You only have to look at society, tattoos, nose rings and earrings, sex change operations, lesbianism, and sport to see that men are becoming woman and woman are becoming men. The Word of God declares that if men compromise the principles of the Word, then woman and children will rule over them (Isaiah 3:4,12). All Satan’s interested in is opposing God’s creative plan, reversing it and ultimately destroying it. Satan is winning, and he’s winning because the church is sick.

Faith levels

Obviously, God grants us different levels of faith, so some of us are able to address our pride better than others, but from my years of observation of people, most don’t even try; they don’t even know that they’re vulnerable to demons; they’re too busy coping with trying to look good in the eyes of others. Like Saul, they worship the true God but their real heart’s interest is in their own well-being and their position on the totem pole of the society they move amongst.

When you devalue the Ten Commandments you prosper pride and the demonic

You can’t stop the progression of pride without God’s Ten Commandments retaining the top shelf of respect. Respect for the Ten Commandments is the first bulwark against the enemy’s manoeuvring. Sadly, the modern church has fallen for the lie that the God of the Old Testament was hard and cruel, but the God of the New Testament is meek and gentle. Consequently, modern Christians have been duped into believing the grace lie that they can interpret God’s commandments according to how they feel at the time because the Commandments are implanted in their hearts when you become a Christian. The Word of God states that God is the same yesterday, today and forever; He never changes (Hebrews 12:8). So this teaching is just a lie designed to make the church look more acceptable to the world, and if you believe this lie then you are not a Christian; you’re a tare.

When it comes to the crunch, by far the majority of Christians practice family first at the cost of compromising the principles of God. If you say you love God, then obviously His principles over-rule all else, but the modern church displays its hypocrisy by being openly submitted to divorce and re-marriage, openly retailing with the world and sporting like the world on God’s holy day, openly endorsing women in the pulpit, not separating from wilful Christian sinners but rather falsely loving them in their sin (1 Corinthians 5:11-13), and turning a blind eye to the sin of homosexuality (Romans 1). The church is sick and dying.

Once you mix your Christian principles with the world

People have been so duped by their self-evaluated goodness they don’t even know what pride is. To most it’s a feeling of superiority which they believe they don’t experience. The truth is, pride is believing I’m special; pride is being jealous of what your neighbour has; pride is believing it’s not fair when you hurt my feelings; pride is taking on someone when they’ve said or done something unfairly offensive; pride is wanting a better deal and failing to see the garden God’s placed you in. It’s pride because it’s all about me and my feelings. It’s not faith in God’s will and plan. Pride is simply turning to myself instead of stopping the mood reaction and instead turning to the Father for His will in the matter.

Never take on a demon in your own strength

If you take on someone for hurting your feelings, or if you envy someone for having a better deal, you’ll unwittingly take on demons and you’ll end up with the same consequences of decay as that person (Matthew 7:1,2). We’re not fighting flesh and blood but principalities and powers, and the rulers of darkness and spiritual wickedness in high places (Ephesians 6:12). We’re up against gorilla warfare demons, not people. The demons use people to trick you into their snare. It’s pride to take on a demon in your own strength especially by using the Name of Jesus with your own self-elevated self-worthiness. Like Christ, who let Satan kill Him, demons are only submissive to the will of the Father. You’re wiser to wait on God and leave the outcome to God.

 

May God grant the strength of character for some men and women to stand against the swell.

 

Dr. Samuel Gourdone

 

 
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Posted by on September 2, 2016 in Pride

 

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