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Sermon 120 – Newton’s 3rd Law

Newton’s 3rd Law of physics states that … for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. It’s not a premise or a theory; it’s law. That means, it’s not a possibility or a maybe; it’s a fact of the physical realm we live in. It happens in every instance of action, 100% of the time. Hit a tree at fast speed and your body will hit the windscreen with the same force unless you’re wearing a seat-belt.

What people fail to understand is that the laws of the physical realm are simply a reflection of the spiritual realm. In the spiritual realm the same law applies. You see it’s application in the physical realm so you can open your spiritual eyes and appreciate how the spiritual realm operates.

The Word of God states in Matthew 7:1 & 2 … judge not that you be not judged, for with what judgment you judge, you shall be judged and with what measure you mete, it shall be measured to you again. The Bible calls it sowing and reaping, but it’s simply the law of equal and opposite reaction.

Sow disrespect, you’ll get disrespected. Sow control over people, you’ll get controlled by a demon, and you won’t know it’s happening. Sow judgment and you’ll fall to the same thing you judged. Sow envy and you’ll reap hatred.

The key element that the Bible encourages is … humility

God gives grace to the humble. He resists the proud. God loves a contrite spirit. He hates pride because it’s from hell. Humility comes from heaven. Pride is a characteristic of Satan. Humility is a characteristic of Christ.  If you choose pride, God will resist your pride with an equal and opposite reaction … a haughty spirit precedes a fall. If you choose humility, Satan will resist it with an equal and opposite reaction, but the difference is God will be your strength, and the reward will be eternal.

Humility?

To understand humility, you need to understand pride. To walk humbly you need to block pride. Pride is triggered in two ways, and always via feelings. One way is by getting puffed up via good feelings eg. when you get a compliment or complete a task well. A voice says to you that you’re pretty good or clever or capable. The other way is via bad feelings eg. when someone says or does something to hurt your feelings. A voice says to you that it’s not fair or nice. Consequently, you can have puffed-up pride, but even more commonly, you can have hurt pride.

Humility is not an outward appearance; it’s an inner attitude of God’s strength to desist from sucking-up to your hurt pride or puffed-up pride. It’s learnt from recognising that your hurt feelings or good feelings are a satanic trap to get you to be proud so that Satan can apply the law of equal reaction against you.

There’s no way you can avoid good or bad feelings. It’s part of being human. You can pretend to block your feelings with coolness or macho-ness, but they’re still there; they’re just covered over.

Humility doesn’t mean you block your feelings with coolness. It means you feel it and go to God with your hurt and trust His solution, accepting that hurt is part of the solution to learning faith and trust.

Repentance and Forgiveness don’t happen until you give up your feelings

You can’t repent and hold onto hurt feelings, and you can’t forgive and hold onto hurt feelings. You have to give up your feelings and die to what you want before you can repent or forgive.

It’s not fair, I want good feelings

Most people say sorry or forgive so they can get their good feelings back. Their motive is selfish, so it never works. No one likes bad feelings and no one likes looking bad in the eyes of others. So we let the feelings of embarrassment dictate our spirit’s decision and end up suffering the reactions of our action.

Really, underneath all our feelings is just the human desire to be valued and favoured … to be special above others. In other words, we all like feeling superior and hate feeling inferior and we make our judgments based on this motivation. Sadly, that’s the pathway to hell, and God challenges this path with circumstances of life that are designed to re-evaluate the natural law.

Satan uses feelings to trap you in the natural law. Focussing on the feelings of unfairness or superior-ness [superiority is really motivated by past hurts and envy] traps you in the judgment of the person who has hurt you and results in an equal and opposite reaction that Satan can manipulate to make you act like the person you hate.

God’s unpopular pathway to heaven

Jesus made Himself of no reputation and took on Himself the form of a servant. He humbled Himself to the Father’s will and became obedient unto death … Philippians 2:7,8

If you take the pathway least travelled and seek to walk humbly, you’ll cop an equal and opposite reaction from Satan, and God will save you for his eternal kingdom.

If you take the broad way, you’ll still cop an equal and opposite reaction from Satan, and you’ll end up in eternal hell.

No matter what you do you won’t avoid an equal and opposite reaction, but you can choose where you want to end up.

How do you stop your pride?

If you want to stop your pride so you walk the walk of Christ, you have to address your feelings. Pride enters through your feelings. It therefore, must exit through your feelings. You can’t just decide to stop your pride. You first must give up your hurt feelings or your superior feelings. You need to feel yourself do this. Just as you feel the hurt, you must feel the letting go of the hurt. It requires a decision of the mind, but ultimately, it’s actually a decision of the heart.

The mind calculates that the pain feelings or good feelings are part of the walk with Christ and despite the feelings, gives an instruction to one’s heart (spirit) to trust the Lord through the feelings. The heart then lets go the feelings and you feel it go. It doesn’t necessarily resolve the feelings straight away, but an inner confidence of faith is restored that Christ is in control of the situation.

The thief on the cross

The thief on the cross felt his anger and reacted with disrespect and arrogance towards Jesus and demanded He fix his problem. The other thief felt his sin and humbled himself. Humility isn’t based on goodness or badness; it’s feeling your sin and giving up the resistance to defend it.

The problem … you get what you practice

The Word of God declares in 2 Timothy 3, that in the last days people will be incontinent, that is they will not be able to control their feelings because they have allowed themselves to be disrespectful, envious of those that are good, trucebreakers, self-lovers, heady and high-minded, having a form of godliness but never able to come to the truth.

If you practice disrespect, manipulation, defiance, envy, compromise and bending of God’s laws, sexual evil, and don’t keep your word, there’ll be a point of incontinence where you won’t be able to return to self-control even if you want to.

If you don’t control your prideful emotions then you will lose control of your emotions and become incontinent. If you allow your selfish emotions to rule, then you will get an equal and opposite reaction of destruction that will separate you from God.

You need to wear a seatbelt if you don’t want the injury

Macho-ness doesn’t wear a seatbelt; it thinks it’ll never get hurt. Coolness doesn’t wear a seatbelt; it thinks it won’t feel the pain. Fear puts on the seatbelt but fails to buckle it up. It wants the freedom to choose. It looks like it’s wearing the seatbelt so it doesn’t get caught by the police and doesn’t get into trouble.

The seatbelt in the spiritual kingdom is … death. If you’re dead, the feelings are irrelevant. Death is not simple; it requires faith. It has to be learnt; it’s not automatic. It’s daily, not a once for all. It’s learnt through good and bad feelings and by observing the reactions when you fail to stop your actions. You learn it through your failures and your observations. It can only be done after you’ve surrendered to the will of the Father … John 5:30, but, even though the seatbelt restricts your freedoms and wants, the seatbelt means you won’t go through the windscreen; God is in control.

If any man will follow Me, let him deny himself and take up his hurt feelings and pain daily and follow Me. For whoever will save his life will lose it but whoever will lose his life for My sake, the same will save it …  Luke 9:23,24

 

Pastor Frank Chisholm

 

 

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Posted by on March 17, 2018 in Humility, 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 118 – I’m Sorry

Proverbs 20:6 … most men will proclaim their own goodness, but a faithful man is hard to find.

In Australia, the deputy Prime Minister, Barnaby Joyce, has been exposed for adultery. He’s been challenged about promoting the woman, with whom he’s had an affair, into a higher job position. His family is struggling with being dumped and publicly embarrassed. As a consequence, the Prime Minister has publicly suggested that Mr. Joyce’s behaviour is unacceptable and included a ‘no sex with staff’ in the code of conduct agreement. Mr. Joyce says he’s sorry, but at the same time he’s challenged the Prime Minister’s reaction. As far as he’s concerned it’s his own private business and no one has the right to judge him or tell him what to do. His sorry is mixed with arrogance and blame.

Fake sorry = don’t tell me what to do

Recently, I corrected a young man in our fellowship for his selfish attitude of envy and pride. He said sorry, then went about defending himself with his good deeds and ended up blaming me for the correction. In other words, he was telling me how he should have been corrected. From his perspective I was over-the-top. The truth is, he wouldn’t be put in his place.

Responsibility vs. Blame

I always find it fascinating how when someone sins they blame the authority for correcting them instead of taking responsibility for their sin and whole-heartedly accepting the correction. As far as they’re concerned, they’re a good person so sorry should see the end of it. Like king Saul, a selfish proud spirit won’t accept they’re wrong, even though they’ll often agree they are. These people will always ultimately look for excuses to defend their selfishness.

God doesn’t accept sorry

God only accepts repentance; He doesn’t accept sorry. God didn’t accept Judas’ sorry, but He did Peter’s. One sorry was an apology because he was exposed and embarrassed & probably blamed Jesus for putting him in that position by making him the treasurer. The other sorry was an acceptance of responsibility with sincere remorse resulting in repentance. One sorry re-evaluates that it’s not as bad as was first portrayed, the other sorry knows it was wrong and humbles itself to the punishment. One is too proud to bend, the other bends and repents.

Judas sorry

Most people say sorry to get out of trouble. They don’t really mean it. Why? The pride of humanity doesn’t like being told it’s wrong. Most people believe they have the right to diagnose and surgically remove anything that’s bad, themselves. They don’t like other people telling them they’re wrong. Their pride can’t handle it.

Blame attached to sorry means you’re not sorry

You can’t say sorry and blame at the same time; it’s a contradiction. Saying sorry with an excuse, is not sorry; it’s selfish. Blame attached to sorry is the same as saying … “sorry for upsetting you but you’re wrong for correcting or punishing me the way you did. I’m willing to be told I’m wrong but I don’t like you telling me I’m wrong (which obviously doesn’t make sense); and you made me do it anyway”.

What the person is really saying is … I think I’m good. You shouldn’t tell me I’m bad! I have the right to decide whether I’ve done wrong, you don’t. In other words, they won’t be told, or they’ll pretend to be, but in their heart, they don’t like being put in their place.

Being put in your place

Being put in your place, is generally read as being put-down, when in fact, it may be a beneficial correction to your pride of position. Pride won’t interpret the difference but rather objects to the correction, in which case it clearly does need to be put in its place.

I’m right because you are wrong

Ask yourself … do you deduce you are right when someone who’s offended you is corrected?

The truth is, only pride makes the deduction … I’m right because you’re wrong, or I’m good because you are corrected. Just because someone is corrected doesn’t necessarily mean that you are right, and someone’s wrongness doesn’t prove you are good. You can’t conclude rightness based on someone else’s wrong. You may both be wrong. In fact, if this is your common deduction, then you, yourself, are full of your own pride.

Humanity makes its deductions based on its feelings

Most people believe that what they feel is the truth. Their deductions are based on how they feel. If you hurt my feelings then you’re not nice and you deserve to pay for it. This is the thinking of the anti-Christ, not Jesus. A genuine Christian makes his deductions by faith. Faith is the engine of his spirit, not feelings. If you’re running on feelings you’d better submit to correction to restore yourself to faith or you’ll eventually derail.

A faithful Christian accepts his feelings (whether it be heaviness, loneliness, failure, hurts, purposeless) as the burden of life that he shares with Christ. The feelings drive him to Christ … cast your cares on Him because he cares for you … as his strength and source.

The world is chasing happy feelings

The human spirit doesn’t like feeling bad, which is why if it gets caught, it says sorry, so it can get back to its good feelings. As far as the world is concerned, if I say sorry, that should be the end of it, and if it isn’t then you’ve got the problem. It’s a convenient way of ignoring one’s own sin and casting the blame onto someone else.

The world wants happy feelings all the time. It chases after it through … success, money, friends, marriage, travel, sex, fun, drugs, alcohol, & super challenges.  The fake church sells happiness so it can take advantage of what the world is looking for, so it can increase its numbers and money and look good to the world so it’s not persecuted.  Thus, the fake church is just like the world.

If you’re chasing happy feelings, then you’re of the world, not of Christ

Christ doesn’t offer happiness; He offers blessedness, and that’s a completely different product …  blessed are you when you are persecuted, merciful, meek, mourn & poor … Matthew 5.

Happiness is transient and temporary; it’s based on luck. It never permanently fulfils; it always has to be chased for more, and it always produces envy against those who seem to have it.

Blessedness is based on faith. It’s a commitment to Christ, based on a relationship of love. It doesn’t seek happy feelings. It simply serves Him and trusts Him whatever the feelings and outcome.

It’s never really a ‘happy’ issue

On the surface humanity says it’s chasing happiness, but that’s just a cover for the real hidden agenda of … I can do what I want; no one’s going to tell me what I can and can’t do. If you don’t want to be told, you’ll chase what you want. Thus, Barnaby Joyce is now exposed for his real agenda and Satan wins and secretly controls another lost spirit.

Freedom strategy

The whole purpose of blame and hurt is to get you to retaliate against a demonic spirit so you come under its power. Satan argues ‘feelings’ through blame and guilt to trap you in His power. It’s the tickling of your feelings that is the temptation. Sin is acting on the temptations.

Conversely, God argues sin. This puts the argument on the spirit level, rather than the feeling level.

A remnant Christian goes to God’s Word for the truth of a person’s attack against them and either repents for being wrong, or righteously refuses to accept the blame and puts the responsibility for the sin back onto the shoulders of the blamer. They still may suffer the feelings of blame but they’re free from the power of the blame; they’ve shared it with the Lord. Elijah stood up to Ahab, David stood up to King Saul, Shadrach stood up to Nebuchadnezzar, and Jesus stood up to the Pharisees.

The remnant needs to learn the righteous path to Godly aggressive humility to stand up against the sinner, rather than being sucked into the satanic trick to react to hurt feelings.

 

Pastor Nick Clarence

 

 

 
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Posted by on February 17, 2018 in Blame, Correction

 

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Sermon 111 – the Blame Game

Blame can be defined as … making some else responsible for my hassles.

Blame originated in the garden of Eden. Humanity can’t stop the thought of blame. It’s inherent in everyone’s spirit. We often practice it subconsciously with the voices we hear against others and the hassles of our circumstances.

The first thing a human does when they think they’re in trouble is look for an escape route of blame.

Blame is of Satan

Blame is a quality of Satan. It is not a characteristic of the Holy Spirit. The voice of the temptation to blame comes directly from Satan, not from God. Satan won this right when he tricked Eve with the carrot of elevation. He sold her the lie that God was holding something back from her and that she could be her own god and know good and evil. She took the bait and became Satan’s slave to sin. The good and evil she now knew was only seen from her selfish perspective. What she thought was good was only what felt good to her own thinking, and everything else was bad to her as far as she could see.

Feelings, not faith

Humanity makes its judgments on how it feels. A Christian talks to God to get His perspective; he doesn’t rely on his feelings; they more often trick you into Satan’s web. Once you’re in a web the more you try and fight it the more entangled you become. There’s only one way out of a web… you need someone greater than yourself to break off the web. Through acknowledgement of your sin, Jesus can free you from Satan’s web. There’s no other way.

Self-protection

When you protect your selfishness, blame will follow. Blame flows from selfishness and selfishness is simply me first. So when you practice blame you are practicing Satanism. You are simply worshipping yourself without even knowing it. The carrot of elevation has blinded your eyes to the truth and your feelings become your justice system. You’ve ignorantly become the judge and set yourself up as your own god. It’s anti-christ behaviour; it’s elevation and it’s selfish. It’s opposite to dying to yourself by trusting God and waiting on Him for his justice.

You can only blame others for your circumstances when you are selfish. It doesn’t feel selfish, it feels fair and just. But that’s the point; you’re analysing the truth based on your feelings, and when you practice that you confirm you’re not in the kingdom of heaven, because Jesus doesn’t practice that, only Satan does.

Cop the cross

When Jesus allowed Himself to be sacrificed on the cross He was allowing humanity to throw their blame on Him. It was totally unjust and unfair, but He did it because the Father willed it, and because he did it, humanity can be saved from its sin. The problem is, humanity can’t see its sin that it needs to be saved from. It prefers to live in the injustice of its hurts and cast blame. Whilst it does this it can never be free; it will always be under the power of Satan, no matter how much it tries or pretends otherwise; no matter how much good it thinks it does. You can be as good as you like, but eventually you will be exposed as selfish through the sin of blame.

Blasphemy

Collins dictionary defines blame as casting fault and even blaspheming. Blaspheming and blame come from the same French root. So often we automatically blame God for not coming through for us the way we want. It’s telling God how He’s supposed to behave towards us. It’s casting dispersions on the Spirit that dwells in us and if we’re not careful, it’s blasphemy. Blasphemy is the degrading of the Spirit of God by putting the blame on God instead of Satan. It’s calling the Holy Spirit, unholy.

Climate change

We look at the world’s chaos and blame God for not fixing the problems. We’re good so He should be good to us. We fail to stop and remind ourselves that the sickness of the world is the fruit of sin. Climate change is not due to climate, it’s due to sin. The Bible tells us that we come from dust and return to dust. That is, our spirit and body are directly connected to the earth we dwell on. Consequently, when we sin we pollute the land we live on. If our country endorses homosexuality, free sex, and abortion, don’t blame God for the decay of the earth; stop sinning and obey His ten commandments.

Money

Our country loves money. Our economy is the people’s prime concern. We trade with China and ignore its human rights record against fellow Christians because we love money more. We’re more interested in money than the poor, and money gives you position over people, and we falsely believe that money is a measurement of how much God loves you. Don’t blame God for the mess when He taught that the love of money is the root of all evil.

You hurt my feelings

King Saul is a prime example of how when you forget where you’ve come from and allow elevated position to rise up in you, you start envying your neighbour. You get hurt by what people say and do and hold grievances against them. From there you do what you’re told your way, and when you’re confronted that it isn’t God’s way you defend your position with blame (1 Samuel 15). The consequences of these actions results in rebellion, can’t be told, superstition and witchcraft, and eventually demonic possession.

David

On the other hand, a David cops the unjust blame and turns to the Lord for His justice and protection. A genuine Christian behaves like David and thus, Christ; he cops the blame and never blames. He ducks the javelins and He turns to the Lord and waits on His justice, not expecting any justice for himself. He’s only interest is serving Jesus Christ. A fake Christian acts good like King Saul, but their heart has elevated itself with its own importance. It thinks it’s the king and won’t listen to the prophet. It’s caught in the web of Satan.

Faith or family-blame

King Saul was David’s father-in-law. If anyone should have understood him, you would think that his wife’s family would be there to support him. But that’s not how it was and David had to run and trust God at the same time, and that’s the walk of a faithful Christian. If you waste your life blaming your parents or sister for your hurts, then you are not in Christ. A faithful Christian takes responsibility for blaming and repents and trusts the Lord’s plan with the hurts.

Suffer to reign

If you want to reign with Christ you have to suffer with Christ (2 Timothy 2:11,12); it’s not a free ride like the modern church teaches. Jesus is not Santa Claus, but most people join the church so they can get the goodies for being good and then blame God for not delivering, or get trapped into the fake worship God because they do get what they prayed for.

The Bible teaches that all that live Godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution (2 Timothy 3:12), and blame is part of that package. If you’re not interested in copping it then you’re not really interested in Christ; you’re only using Him and telling Him how He is to behave for you.

If you truly want to walk with Christ, then like Christ and David, expect to be blamed and when it hurts turn to the Lord and not to yourself. If you don’t do this, you will end up like King Saul and miss the kingdom.

 

Pastor Clive Fadden

 
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Posted by on April 10, 2017 in Blame

 

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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 104 – The Rain Falls on the Just and the Unjust

ABC news radio recently announced the past discovery in the National Gallery of Australia of a stolen statue known as the dancing Shiva idol belonging to the Sripuranthan tribe in southern India.  Two years ago the Australian government had returned the idol to the Indian authorities but it was being held in police custody as evidence of the crime. The tribes people were now expressing their frustrations to the authorities. They wanted the idol returned to their temple because they believed that the idol brought them good luck. To their thinking, when the idol was with them the rains came and their crops prospered and life was happy.

It reminds me of the Jews burning incense to the queen of heaven, Jeremiah 44:16-19. They worshipped the Lord God and at the same time made cakes to the queen of heaven. They adopted whatever technique gave them the most apparent prosperity. Life was based on getting the best deal; it wasn’t based on trusting God. Consequently, their thinking was the fruit of their contaminated spirits and their behaviour was irrational, but not to them.

What’s idol worship?

Obviously, bowing to a statue is clearly idol worship, but does western society practice idol worship without recognising their contradictory behaviour?  ISIS thinks so.

There’s a difference between thinking that you’re good because things are going good and being thankful when things are going well. One is the love of self and the other is the love of God. If you say you’re a Christian, then one is using God as your idol for your own well-being and the other is serving God whatever the circumstances. They’re miles apart. Sadly, most Christians have been indoctrinated by our humanistic society to believe that they are worshiping God when in fact they’re just using Him for their own self-value.

David was thankful for things working out well, but if you read the Psalms & the Book of Samuel you’ll quickly recognise that most of his life was surviving the satanic hassles fired against him. Think about Saul’s hatred, Absalom’s rebellion, and the loss of Ziglag. Despite the conflicts, he retained a God confidence attitude, and fought his own selfishness. Everything was based on trusting God’s plan, not chasing the best for himself.

If you give self an inch, it will take a mile

The current motto supporting homosexuality is … Love is Love.

In other words, their argument is that any type of good feelings is love. As if sin is going to feel bad! Everyone knows that sin is not love, whether it feels good or not. Once you give sin licence, of course it won’t be able to stop itself, so evil just calls the sin ‘love’ so it can justify it. What rubbish! Humanism can talk itself into anything, because self is its idol. Homosexuality is just an excuse for more self-idol worship and anti-christ resistance to the will of God.

Christians are losing the war

Everyone is born under satanic influence with the desire to worship themselves.  It’s the pride of thinking that we are of importance. It’s heavily promoted by our humanistic society. In fact, in modern society no one’s allowed to fail; no one’s allowed to feel bad. But the truth is, our children are being manipulated into thinking of themselves first; to protect their rights; to love themselves first before their neighbour. The whole process of modern society is to devalue Christianity and negate God and His rules from inhibiting our selfish passions.

We’re all subjected to the temptation of thinking we’re pretty good when something goes our way, but it’s temptation, and if you’re saved you have to wake up to the trick and resist Satan, not by telling Satan to rack-off, but rather by not giving ground to your pride.

Whatever is not of faith, is sin, Romans 14:23

It’s this inherent satanic inspired self-love that has to die daily, by surrendering in faith to the will of God. You can camouflage this pride with good works or happy attitudes, but if it’s not of faith then the good works are just a smoke screen to get into the good books of others, to protect your self-value to be liked and not dis-liked.

Why does the rain fall on the just and the unjust? Matthew 5:45

So why does the rain fall on the unjust too? Because, if it just fell on the just, everyone would swap sides so they could get the deal, so how would you know who was fair-dinkum? Plus, the just would be full of their own importance over the unjust, and thus get lost in their selfishness.

The rain falls on the just and the unjust. So, if you think you’re just because it rains on your life, how does that prove that you are just? Thinking that you’re just actually suggests that you are full of your own importance, like the Pharisee vs the Publican in Luke 18:10, and therefore you’ve either fallen into the pit of self-elevation, or you are actually one of the unjust.

The just walk by faith, Galatians 3:11

The unjust think they deserve God’s goodness on them, but the just don’t think they deserve anything, they’re just grateful when it rains on them; they don’t bemoan when it rains on the unjust more; and they trust God when it doesn’t rain on them. Any other pattern in your behaviour and attitude is contrary to faith, and therefore is evidence of using God for your idol worship. We all face the temptation to have a mood when it doesn’t work to our advantage, but that’s the tempter’s strategy to trick us into our pride. Love doesn’t fall to pride, and if it does it repents.

Think of it this way … the unjust have 70 or so years; the just have eternity. There’s no need for envy.

Why resist the temptation to think we’re something?

That’s simple … we’re all born in sin and therefore fully susceptible to demonic influence. Our pride opens the door to these familiar spirits (Isaiah 8:19) that will work against you and against the will of God.

I’ve lost count of the character changes I’ve observed when people open their heart to their pride. Recently, I was counselling a Christian man who felt the pride of his daughter’s achievements. I could sense there was pride in his picture because the outward manner of his children, including the daughter, began to show signs of superior self-value and say and do things that were out of character. I drew his attention to the fact that his children were showing the same unhealthy characteristics of their self-centered grandfather.  I pointed out to this man that his pride had opened the door to the spirits operating behind his family chain. When he looked he thankfully could see what I was pointing out to him. He recognised his healthy joy had turned to unhealthy pride. Instead of being thankful for the Lord’s rain, he had succumbed to the pride that he was the one who had done it for his daughter. He repented and his children’s attitude reverted back to normal behaviour.

We’re not fighting flesh and blood but principalities and powers, Ephesians 6

Demons attack and tempt in order to activate your pride. Don’t worry about the demons, rather, keep a check on your pride. It’s the thing that will kill you.

God doesn’t stop your pride; you’re responsible to do it.

 

Pastor Greg Saunders

 
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Posted by on August 15, 2016 in Pride, Thankfulness

 

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Sermon 103 – He must increase, I must decrease

John the Baptist had to face the loss of his disciples to a man that he testified to as the Christ. To promote Jesus, cost John his position. John was older than Jesus, his cousin. He was the one that started the discipleship program. He could have easily got jealous that Jesus was more popular, but instead he testified that ‘He must increase, I must decrease’, John 3:30.

I’ve met so many Christians that say that Christ must increase, but I’ve discovered that they’re just pretending. What they really mean is … Christ must increase and I must increase with Him. That’s not what John said. When it comes to popularity and self-value, the temptation for position repetitively wins the day, and a fake Christian’s inherent envy simply will justify their decision.

So how does this teach us what love is?

We have many definitions of love, but underneath it all, it’s pretty much … ‘you be nice to me, I’ll be nice to you.’

Both the church and the world are into this model of love. Both spread the same message of love because both of them are on the same path. For example, if you agree with the right to divorce and re-marry (contrary to the Word of God in Matthew 19:9), you’re the same as the world. If you are supportive of the right to be a homosexual (contrary to the Word of God in Romans 1), then you’re the same as the world. If you support the right for women to be equal with men (contrary to the Word of God in 1 Timothy 2:12), you’re the same as the world. If you say sorry and expect that person to say sorry back to you (contrary to the Word of God in Matthew 5:40), you’re the same as the world. If you practice retail shopping on God’s Sabbath (contrary to the Word of God in Nehemiah 10:31), you’re the same as the world.

If you think the Ten Commandments are now irrelevant Old Testament rules because we’re in the age of grace (contrary to the Word of God in Matthew 5:17-19), then you’ve been conned by the world in the church. [Note: ‘fulfil’ means to fully satisfy; it doesn’t mean ‘to cancel’ as verified by v.18].

But, if you’re fair dinkum for Christ, your path will diverge from the world and the church. Why? Because if you follow the same pattern as the world, you’re really an enemy of Christ (James 4:4).

Ultimately, love is a relationship with God, the Father, through the unconditional surrender of one’s will and wants to the will of Christ, and displayed by one’s attitude to the instructions of Christ through His Word, the Bible. Persecution by the world and the church simply because you stand on the Word of God, will verify your love, because the world and the church don’t want to be told they’re wrong.

The love of Christ is contrary to the world and will suffer the contempt of the world.

The measurement of love

1 Corinthians 13 clearly defines what real love is, and without it we are just a noise. Love is not measured by your good deeds, your warm attitude, your hard work or skills, or your courteous behaviour.

The real measurement of love is envy (v.4), and the real measurement of love is not vaunting itself or seeking its own. You see, love is not measured by what you do to your neighbour, it’s measured by your inner attitude towards your neighbour. You can give away all your money and even die for your neighbour, but if it isn’t love then it’s all a waste of time. You can be as nice to your neighbour as you like but if your heart envies your neighbour’s good fortune then your goodness is just a pretence for your own selfishness.

I’ve discovered that most Christians are just nice so you’ll be nice to them so they enjoy the pleasures of life without the hassles of life. Their real inner heart secretly envies their neighbour’s good fortune, believes that it’s special, and hates being below one’s neighbour. It’s not the love of God; it’s satanic.

So now we’ve mentioned Satan, let’s talk about angels for a second.

What’s the purpose of angels?

Most people seem to think angels are there to protect them, but, because people are basically selfish, what they really mean is … angels are there to keep my life happy. It’s one of the reasons why people become Christians.

Perhaps it’s better to ask what’s the purpose of demons?

Well, if everything is made by Christ for Christ (Colossians 1:16), then demons are there to save you or to destroy you. If you’re a genuine Christian, then you’ll be attacked by demons regularly and consistently, as outlined in Ephesians 6:12, just like Paul’s thorn (2 Corinthians 12:7). Under this constant barrage you’ll be forced to turn to yourself or turn to Christ. God’s taken a risk, but that’s what freedom of choice is, and once you learn to accept your weakness instead of trying to prove your greatness, then you will find His strength and His rest (2 Cor.12:10).

I think the purpose of an angel is, under God’s direction, to inhibit the power of a demon against you, and thus it is for protection, but not for your happiness, but for His glory.

So, in the light of this, let’s talk about truth.

What’s the measurement of truth?

Most people measure truth by how they feel. If you make me feel good, you’re nice, but if you make me feel bad, you’re not nice. On this basis of evaluation, my truth is my feelings. But, they’re deceiving themselves. Feelings will always deceive you when you live to protect your feelings, but, on the other hand, feelings always expose the truth when I live for His increase and my decrease.

I was counselling a young woman who, like most women, was heavy into feelings. If someone hurt her feelings or she observed someone else‘s feelings being hurt, she would immediately make a judgment against the offender, rather than turn to the Lord by faith and seek His wisdom over what she had observed. When I asked her how she felt about a certain offence she gave me a description of what the offender had done and why it was bad. She actually hadn’t answered what I asked; I asked her for a feeling, yet even though she was a feeling person, she wasn’t able to give me her feelings. Instead of feeling, I got logic.

I’ve learnt that when a person clearly misinterprets the question, you’re talking to someone under the influence of a demon.

What was happening?

This woman was circumventing her feelings because in her heart she knew her feelings were leading her to her own sin of judgment and thus would expose her selfishness. She lived in the fear of feeling stupid, so she automatically judged people for making her or others feel stupid. Because of the pain of feeling stupid, she subconsciously but also deliberately ignored her feelings, and unwittingly, she had succumbed to demonic influence. When she eventually shared with me her feeling of ‘anger’, she quickly admitted that she was in sin and the Spirit of God set her free from the demonic.

When you use logic to hide your feelings, you’re blocking the truth that’s being exposed by your feelings, and unwittingly reinforcing the demonic power over you.

John the Baptist could easily have allowed himself to be sad that Jesus was absconding with his disciples, but instead, he chose to be faithful. He used his logic to over-rule his feelings so that he would be faithful. Faith works by love (Galatians 5:6) and love is … ‘He must increase, I must decrease’. Consequently, he was attacked by demons to get him to relinquish his commitment to Christ, but yet, by faith, he was free from their power over his spirit and saved to eternity with Christ.

The goal of every genuine believer

What things were gain to me, I count loss for Christ. I count all things loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord; for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them dung that I might win Christ. Found in him not having my own righteousness by trying to keep the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: that I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death. Philippians 3:7-10

Everybody says they want Christ to increase, but what they really want is to protect themselves from their own decrease. Like the seed sown among thorns, these will never know the resurrection to eternal life.

 

May God strengthen your heart’s purpose to decrease for Christ by His Spirit.

 

Pastor Jim Stratton

 

 
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Posted by on July 27, 2016 in Love

 

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