“Sodom, Gomorrah, and the days of Noah”

“For as the lightning, that cometh forth out of the one part under heaven, shineth unto the other part under heaven; so SHALL the also the Son of man be in his day.

But first he must suffer many things, and be rejected of this generation.

And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be in the days of the Son of man.

They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, UNTIL the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.

LIKEWISE also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the SAME DAY that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.

Thus SHALL it be in the day when the Son of man is REVEALED.” Luke 17:24-30

I do want to start by saying that I have did very similar posts to this thought but I do hope this will be more detailed and allow readers to read the scriptures and decide for themselves the interpretation of the this.

And it is often so hard to do this job, not just for me, but for all of us that minister the true Gospel, for us to relay these teaching without having people offended or upset because they feel it too harsh.

But we have all been sinners, we all sin, all that are believers now are believers because they chose to heed the warnings and repent.

The only difference is those who take those warnings from Jesus, exactly as they are, WARNINGS FROM JESUS, or those who choose to feel offense rather than feel repentance.

Jesus gave us those warnings so that we would know and that we would be on guard to protect ourselves from those things to come by having our lives entrusted to him and our souls already sealed in his Spirit.

And one may argue that they have heard this all their lives and he hasn’t come back yet, well, be grateful you have heard it and be grateful that he has allowed you another day to hear again because we are told in the Bible that”God will not always strive with man” and the reason that he has NOT returned yet, is HIS MERCY, He wants people saved.

2nd Peter 3:1-18: “The second epistle (letter), beloved, I now write unto you; in both which, I STIR UP YOUR PURE MINDS BY WAY OF REMEMBRANCE: That ye be MINDFUL of the WORDS which were spoken by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Saviour.

Knowing THIS first, that there SHALL COME IN THE LAST DAYS scoffers (mockers), walking after their own lusts, (concerned with only their own desires), 

And SAYING,Where is the promise of his coming? for since our fathers fell asleep (ancestors died), all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.

For this they WILLINGLY are ignorant of (forget), that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water, and in the water; Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water perished;

But the heavens and the earth, WHICH ARE NOW, by the same word are kept in store,, RESERVED into fire against (until) the day of judgement and perdition (destruction) of UNGODLY men.

But beloved, BE NOT IGNORANT(not being aware) OF THIS ONE THING, that one day is with the Lord AS a thousand years, and a thousand years AS one day.

THE LORD IS NOT SLACK CONCERNING HIS PROMISE, AS SOME MEN COUNT SLACKNESS; BUT IS LONGSUFFERING TO US-WARD (toward us), NOT WILLING THAT ANY SHOULD PERISH, BUT THAT ALL SHOULD COME TO REPENTANCE.

But the day of the Lord WILL come as a thief in the night; in which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works therein shall be burned up.

Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, WHAT MANNER OF PERSONS OUGHT YE TO BE in all holy conversation (conduct) and godliness.

Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being ON FIRE shall be dissolved, and the elements shall MELT with a fervent heat?

Nevertheless, we, ACCORDING TO HIS PROMISE, look for a NEW heavens and a NEW earth, WHEREIN DWELLETH RIGHTEOUSNESS (where right standing with God lives). 

Wherefore beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, BE DILIGENT that ye may be found of him in PEACE, without spot, and blameless.

And account (consider) that the longsuffering (PATIENT forbearing) of the Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to wisdom given unto him has written you;

As also in his epistles , speaking in them of THESE things; in which are some things HARD TO BE UNDERSTOOD, which they that are unlearned (untaught) and unstable wrest (twist), as they do the other scriptures, UNTO THEIR OWN DESTRUCTION.

Ye therefore, beloved seeing ye know these things BEFORE (in advance), BEWARE, LEST YE ALSO, BEING LED AWAY WITH THE ERROR OF THE WICKED, FALL FROM YOUR OWN STEADFASTNESS.

But grow in grace, and in knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, To him be the glory both now and for ever, Amen.”

Peter was reiterating that some would question and laugh at the return of Christ, while others would get so caught up in their thinking that they would twist the scriptures to suit themselves thereby destroying themselves rather that to accept the word as is, including obedience to those words, while we should do our best to live blamelessly and in peace knowing that although God is very, very patient that one day that patience will run out.

And sin has always been, since the fall of man, and there is “nothing new under the sun” as the Bible so eloquently puts it and the sins committed now are no different, the DIFFERENCE is the sheer scale, the MAGNITUDE of those sins and the acceptance, dismissal, and excusal of sin.

That is the difference how can anyone truly, truly believe that Jesus is a loving merciful God and yet he could possibly continue to allow the influence of this world to continue while others cry for his deliverance?  

And we can’t have both, not on the scale that we have it, pull numbers on human trafficking, and brutality faced by millions living in various parts of the world under the rule of evil dictators, and all that are being persecuted for their religious beliefs, and there are those not even of the Christian faith being tormented alongside our brothers and sisters, because those in power want the “faith” to be in their rule over them, viewing themselves to be “gods” and that is horrifying and it is COMMON in many parts of the world.

And as we discussed last post, the babies and another big one, with the destruction of the family unit, alos the absolute disregard for life, many countries now having “euthanasia” laws, check some of these out, ye may be surprised, it is the legal right to kill the elderly, the sick, those with mental or emotional challenges, even young people suffering from depression.

No one even bothering to say, “Hey, hang on life can get better”, No, if a person feels their life is no longer worth living or a family member who has power of attorney feels that person’s life is “no longer worth living” they can CHOOSE to end these lives.

The key word in all these social arguments is CHOICE and God and God alone has the right to make life and death choices.

So you see, it’s not just the sin, it is the amount and again, the conscious ACCEPTANCE of those sins as just part of life in the age of new “enlightened, awareness”, beats me, I never would have guessed murder would be a legal everyday occurrence in a highly evolved society!

Read up on the downfalls of the greatest empires of days long ago and you will see one common theme, they had a blatant disregard for life and thought nothing of leaving the elderly out to die and destroying babies that they felt “inferior”, the Spartans made a counsel event of, and even that is disputed by some, but to attempt to erase history and the ugliness and horror of it only keeps us from learning not to trod the paths that others dared, which is why we are warned to watch in all things and to not be “led away”, as Peter warned us, often words can be smooth and actions argued long enough by a tongue dipped in silk can become quite convincing, which is which we are to BEWARE.

Life, it is the disregard for life, Jesus gave his life to save ours and so many are so quick to throw the lives of others away in their desire to make their own life more convenient, comfortable, or whatever their “logical reason” for that action may be.  IT especially disturbs me that society has for quite awhile now, coined the term “Product of Conception” to replace the word and correct name-baby when referencing abortion.

Change the name, makes it so much easier to swallow, so much easier to deny the truth to themselves, but in the end, of notice importance at all, just as the quote, “A rose is a rose” and a living baby, even in the womb, even lying dying before being dismembered is still a baby.

So I want to give you Biblical insight to what Jesus was referencing in our beginning verses and then I ask that you look around your world, compare any of it to his comparisons in both areas and draw your own conclusion as to how far we have fallen.

And as always,I do apologize for my font changes,  I am NOT “shouting” with this capitalization, it is the only way to draw attention to what the emphasis is being placed on, Hey, it’s hard to preach without a “voice” and  a woman’s gotta do what a woman’s gotta do to get the message to you.

As it was in the days of Noe…” 

And God SAW that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that EVERY imagination (intent) of the thoughts of his heart WAS ONLY EVIL CONTINUALLY (all the day).

And it repented  the Lord that he had made man on the earth, (He was SORRY that he had created humans) and it GRIEVED HIS HEART.

And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me ( I am sorry)  that I have made them.

But Noah found GRACE in the eyes of the Lord. These are the generations of Noah: Noah WAS a just man and perfect (doesn’t mean BEING perfect, mean blameless) in his generations, and NOAH WALKED WITH GOD.

And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

The earth also was corrupt before God, and THE EARTH WAS FILLED WITH VIOLENCE. And GOD LOOKED UPON THE EARTH, AND BEHOLD, IT WAS CORRUPT; FOR ALL FLESH HAD CORRUPTED HIS WAY UPON THE EARTH.

AND GOD SAID UNTO NOAH, THE END OF ALL FLESH IS COME BEFORE ME; FOR THE EARTH IS FILLED WITH VIOLENCE THROUGH THEM; AND BEHOLD I WILL DESTROY THEM WITH THE EARTH.” Genesis 6:5-13

Jesus was referencing this violence, violence on such a scale that even earth itself was made filthy from the bloodshed and every single thought of humans was evil, harmful, and vicious.

And as you know, he destroyed it with water, the great flood, saving only Noah and his family, Noah chose to listen, and as the violence of those that brought destruction on earth itself, the obedience of one saved his family.

LIKEWISE also as it was in the days of Lot…”

Now I got to give you some insight to this, because I can’t give you all these scriptures but to read this story and I do truly encourage reading it in it’s eternity, please read Genesis chapters eighteen and nineteen, KJV.

But I want to bring up to about where will in our scriptures, God and two angels had paid a visit on earth to Abraham and Abraham asked them to stay and eat with him, and at this time God delivered the good news that Sarah would conceive their promised child, BUT God also had  another reason for this earthly visit and had yet more news for Abraham, and I am going to give that conversation because it demonstrates the perfection of the grace and kindness of God as Abraham “bargains” with him.

” And the men rose up from thence, AND LOOKED TOWARD SODOM, and Abraham went with them to bring (send) them on their way.

And the Lord said, SHALL I HIDE FROM ABRAHAM THAT THING WHICH I DO; seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 

For I know him, that he will command (teach) his children, and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, TO DO JUSTICE AND JUDGMENT (righteousness and justice); that the lord may bring upon Abraham that which he had spoken of him.

AND THE LORD SAID, BECAUSE THE CRY OF SODOM AND GOMORRAH IS GREAT, AND BECAUSE THEIR SIN IS VERY GRIEVOUS; I WILL NOW GO DOWN NOW, AND SEE WHETHER THEY HAVE DONE ALTOGETHER ACCORDING TO THE CRY OF IT, WHICH IS COME UNTO ME; AND IF NOT I WILL KNOW. 

And the men turned their faces from thence (there), and went toward Sodom; but Abraham stood yet before the Lord. And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou (Will you) also destroy the righteous with the wicked? 

Peradventure (Suppose) there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou (will you) also destroy and spare not the place for fifty righteous that are therein?

That be far from the to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked; and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee; SHALL NOT THE JUDGE OF THE WHOLE EARTH DO RIGHT? And the Lord said, If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.

And Abraham answered and said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord, which am but dust and ashes; Peradventure (Suppose) there shall lack five of fifty righteous: wilt thou destroy all the city for lack of five?

And he said, If I find there forty and five, I will NOT destroy it.

And he spake unto him yet AGAIN and said Peradventure (suppose) there shall be forty found there, and he said I will NOT do it for forty’s sake.

And he said unto him, Oh let the Lord not be angry, and I will speak, Peradventure (Suppose) there shall be thirty found there, and he said, I will NOT do it if I find thirty there.

And he said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord; Peradventure (Suppose) there be twenty found there, and he said I will NOt destroy it for twenty’s sake.

And he said, Oh let the Lord not be angry, and I will speak yet but this once; Peradventure (Suppose) ten shall be found there, and he said, I WILL NOT DESTROY IT FOR TEN’S SAKE.

And the Lord went his way, and as soon as he had left communing (finished talking) with Abraham; and Abraham went into his place.” Genesis 18:16-33

Now that is just how awesome, kind, and giving the Lord is, he knew exactly what Abraham wanted to ask him, Abraham’s nephew Lot lived in Sodom, but God didn’t chide Abraham, he let Abraham led the conversation, pleading for lives from fifty to ten, if they could only find ten people there who were not wicked…. but they could not… but he still saved Lot because of the pleas of Abraham.

“And there came two ANGELS to Sodom, at even (evening time): and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom, and Lot seeing them rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground;

And he said, Behold ow, my Lords, turn in, I pray you into your servant’s house (come to my house), and tarry (stay) all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise early, and go on your ways, and they said, Nay, (no) but we will abide in the street all night.

And he pressed upon them greatly (urged them); and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat.

BUT before they lay down, the MEN OF THE CITY, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round(surrounded the house), both old and young, all the people from every quarter, 

And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? BRING THEM OUT UNTO US, THAT WE MAY KNOW THEM (know them carnally, rape them

And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him, and said, I pray you, brethren, DO NOT SO WICKEDLY.

Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man, let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing: for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.

And they said, Stand back, And they said AGAIN, This one fellow came in to sojourn and he will needs be a judge; (saying, Lot had moved to their city and thought he was boss) now we will deal worse with thee than them, And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot,, and came near to break the door. But the men (angels) out forth their hand and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut the door. 

And they smote (struck) the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and greta; so they wearied themselves to find the door.

And the men (angels) said unto Lot, Hast thou here any besides? son in law, and thy sons, and thy daughters, and whatsoever thou hast in the city, BRING THEM OUT OF THIS PLACE; FOR THE CRY OF THEM IS WAXEN GREAT (has grown)  BEFORE THE FACE OF THE LORD; and the Lord hath sent us to destroy it.

And Lot went out, and spake unto his sons in law, which married his daughters, and said, Up, get you out of this place; for the Lord will destroy this city. But he was as one that mocked (joked) to his sons in law.

And when the morning arose, the angels hastened (hurried) Lot saying, ARISE, Take thy wife, and thy two daughters, which are here, LEST THEY BE CONSUMED IN THE INIQUITY (punishment) OF THE CITY. 

And while HE LINGERED, the men laid hold upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters; and they brought him forth, and set him without (outside) the city.

And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad (outside), that he said, ESCAPE FOR THY LIFE; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; ESCAPE to the mountain, lest thou be consumed (or you will be destroyed).

And Lot said unto them, Oh, not so my Lord: Behold now, they servant hath found grace in thy sight, and THOU HAST MAGNIFIED THY MERCY, WHICH THOU HAST SHEWED ME IN SAVING MY LIFE; and I cannot escape into the mountain, lest some evil take me, and I die.

Behold now, this city is near to flee unto, and it is a little one; Oh. let me escape thither (there), (is it not a little one?) and my soul live.

And he (the angel) said, See, I have accepted thee concerning this thing also, that I will not overthrow this city, for the which thou hast spoken.  Haste thee (hurry, escape thither (there) for I cannot do any thing till thou be be come hither (until you are there).

Therefore the name of that city was called Zoar. The sun was risen upon the earth when Lot entered into Zoar. THEN THE LORD RAINED UPON SODOM AND GOMORRAH BRIMSTONE AND FIRE FROM THE LORD OUT OF HEAVEN.” Genesis 119:1-24

It is often argued that the Bible doesn’t actually “say” that Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed because of sexaul immoratality, Oh but it does, not in the account of Sodom and Gomorrah but actually it can be found in the New Testaments in the Book of Jude.

Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about (around) them in like manner, GIVING THEMSELVES OVER TO FORNICATION (sexual immorality), and going after strange flesh, ARE SET FORTH FOR AN EXAMPLE, SUFFERING THE VENGEANCE OF ETERNAL FIRE.

The mercy of God is so great in that account and I know Lot offering his daughters is very disturbing and for more on understanding how God really feels about women read Awakening, because God would have NEVER intended for Lot to offer them his daughters.

But we can so many of the attitudes of Lot reflected TODAY.

Lot trying to get his sons in law to come and they just laughed it off stayed in Sodom and died in Sodom, and the angels trying to get Lot moving, finally had to get all them by the hand to get them out and then Lot, while being DIVINELY REMOVED FROM THE PATH OF DESTRUCTION begs NOT to go to the very place he is told to go in order to be safe!

He wanted to go to another place instead of just being thankful, go figure, sounds familiar doesn’t it?

We want it but we often want it our way. so there you have it, decide for yourself and I do want to leave you with a most wonderful word.

ROMANS 10:13: “FOR WHOSOEVER SHALL CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED.”

Pretty simple, don’tcha think? We’ve read the warnings and we don’t want to chance angels having to get out out… oh, but wait angels WILL be getting us, IF you have trusted Christ as your Savior, don’t delay make that decision today!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020 / Reverend Nina Brown Johnson

“Delight yourself in him”

“Thy hands have made me and fashioned me; give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments.

They that fear thee will be glad when they see me; because I have hoped in they word.

I know O Lord, that thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.

Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to they word unto thy servant.

Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live: for thy law is my delight.

Let the proud be ashamed; for they have dealt perversely with me without a cause; but I will meditate in thy percepts,

Let those that fear thee turn unto me, and those that have thy testimonies.

Let my heart be sound (blameless) in thy statutes; that I may not be ashamed.” Psalm 119:73-80 JOD

You know as you study Psalm 119, the overwhelming thought of the entire chapter is teaching us about the WORD and the power of that word to renew, restore, and even resurrect what is dead.

And as we are told in John 1:1: “In the Beginning, WAS the Word, and the WORD WAS WITH GOD, AND THE WORD WAS GOD.”

Drop it down to verse 14, and it further explains, “And the WORD WAS MADE FLESH AND DWELT AMONG US, (and we beheld HIS glory, the glory as of the ONLY begotten SON OF GOD.”

We are also given so much comfort in knowing that the WORD is also our powerful our spiritual weapon, as it is the sword of the Spirit, the WORD of God, as we are war against the enemies that seek to destroy our souls. And the more of his word held safe inside of herat, where no one, can take it, the sharper and more effect that sword will be. As God promised us.

Isaiah 55:11: “So shall my WORD be that goeth forth out of my mouth; It shall NOT returned to me void (unfulfilled), BUT IT SHALL ACCOMPLISH THAT WHICH I PLEASE, AND IT SHALL PROSPER IN THAT THING WHERETO I SEND IT.

So if it is one verse that comes to mind, hold onto that one verse, such as “The Lord IS my Shepherd, I shall NOT want.” Psalm 23:1

“The LORD is my rock,and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I WILL TRUST; my buckler (shield), and the horn (strength) of my salvation, and my high tower.”Psalm 18:2

“The Lord IS my strength and my shield; my heart TRUSTETH in him, and I AM HELPED; therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise thee. The Lord is THEIR strength, and he IS the saving strength of his anointed.” Psalm 28:7,8

If you notice in our passage from Psalm 119, that this is also his request to be a light, a help,an encouragement to other believers.

And to do that we need hope ourselves, so that we can share that hope with others that by seeing God’s love shining through you, they will have hope through or their own journey.

The Bible gives us the road map to peace, love, and joy, there will surely be pain, sorrow, and suffering, but always, always remember it is ONLY for a little awhile, and we live because HE LIVES.

And this the reminder we are given, Acts:27,28a: “That they SHOULD seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him (in the HOPE that they grope for), and FIND HIM, though he be NOT far from every one of us. For IN him WE live, and move, and have our being,..”

And what he is saying with, is that God is NEVER as far away as we think, and even to those who have NOT accepted him YET, he is closer that they would ever know.

Because we ONLY exist because HE CREATED US, we only function, breathe, eat or sleep because he has blessed us to do so. And once we understand the simple truth that LOVES US.

Once we understand that he loves us not because of anything we have done or have left undone, he just loves us. That’s it, HE JUST LOVES US! How fabulous is that? We don’t have to earn it, or try to work to keep it, HE JUST DOES BECAUSE THAT IS JUST WHO HE IS.

And he wants us to joy in that, “listen” to Isaiah 58:14: “Then shalt thou DELIGHT thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father; FOR THE MOUTH OF THE LORD HATH SPOKEN IT.

When the Bible reference “high places” to me, it is always symbolic over overcoming and that God will in fact bless you in those areas that you were once caused to stumble by others who have hurt you or by circumstance or attacks by the enemy and those who serve him.

As we “read”earlier God promised that his WORD will do exactly whatever God desires for it to do. And God gives us that confirmation at the end of the last passage, that this is his WORD and he has SPOKEN it.

We have discussed the WORD, the POWER of his Word and that he loves you and WANTS you to be free in him and he WANTS you to allow your heart to DELIGHT itself in the love, companshioship, and grace of the one who knew you BEFORE even your parents knew you.

He wants you to rest in that love!

So I will end it with the verse, this WORD for you!

Psalm 37:4: “DELIGHT thyself also in the Lord; and HE SHALL GIVE THEE THE DESIRES OF THINE HEART.

May God bless you with his love and peace and keep you in his care!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020/ Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

I have used this song before but if you have never heard please listen, the lyrics are so perfect to describe the price Jesus paid for us at the cross and the love that we can never even begin to understand that he has for us, so much that he gave up his life, so we could live in him, and as he rose, he will one day resurrect us unto him, and until that day, DELIGHT yourself in that love, that love that IS him.

“Unto good”

“And when Joseph’s brethren saw that their father was dead, they said Joseph will peradventure (perhaps) hate us, and will certainly requite (repay) us all the evil which we did unto him.

And they sent a messenger unto Joseph saying, Thy father did command us before he died, saying, So shall ye say unto Joseph, Forgive, I pray thee now, the trespass of thy brethren, and their sin; for they did unto thee evil; and now, we pray thee, forgive the trespass of the servants of the God of thy father. And Joseph wept when they spake unto him.

And his brethren also went and fell before his face; and they said, Behold we be thy servants. And Joseph said unto them, Fear not: for am I in the place of God?

But as for you, ye thought (intended) evil against me; BUT GOD MEANT IT UNTO GOOD, TO BRING TO PASS, AS IT IS THIS DAY, TO SAVE MUCH PEOPLE ALIVE.” Genesis 50:15-20

Most are familiar with the story of how Joseph’s brothers became jealous and hated him so much so that they plotted to kill and through him into a pit, but then instead he ending up being taken out of the pit as sold into slavery.

And God had his hand on Joseph, even though he was captive, being held against his will not only through slavery but through the lies of an angry vindictivative woman who falsely accused him of rape because he rejected her advances toward him.

And can you even imagine how wounded and hurt his heart had to have been because he had did absolutely nothing, nothing to them but yet the hated him. Just as that mirror of Jesus, as Jesus said in the Book of John, 15:25, concerning himself and the fulfilling of the prophecy of him…“THEY HATED ME WITHOUT A CAUSE.” 

God does not cause bad things to happen to us, God loves us, but God does USE all things.

Psalm 119:65-72: TETH: “Thou hast dealt well with thy servant, O, Lord, according to thy word.

Teach me good judgment and knowledge; for I have believed thy commandments. 

Before I was afflicted, I went astray; but now have I kept thy word. 

Thou art good, and doest good, teach me thy statutes.

The proud have forged a lie against me; but I will keep thy precepts with my whole heart.

Their heart is as fat as grease (insensible);but I will delight in thy law.

It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes.

The law of thy mouth is better unto me than thousands in silver and gold.”

Just as Joseph and so many in the Bible and so many of OUR brothers and sisters in the past and even TODAY suffer for the testimony of Christ physically, emotionally and financially to serve the kingdom of God and have overcame through their faith in God and believing for something so much greater than what can be seen.

And there is so much greater,and today hold on to that.

Love & Peace!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020

“Protecting the Vines”

“And it came to pass, that on one of those days, as he taught in the temple, and preached the gospel, the chief priest and the scribes came upon him with the elders. And spake unto him, saying, Tell us, by what authority doest thou these things? or who is he that gavest thee this authority?

And he answered and said unto them, I will also ask you one thing; and answer me: The baptism of John, was it from heaven or men? 

And they reasoned among themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then believed ye him not? But if we say, Of men; all the people will stone us; for they be persuaded that John was a prophet.

And they answered, that they could not tell where it was hence (where the authority came from). 

And Jesus said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.

Then began he to speak to the people this parable; A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth (leased it out) to husbandmen, (tenant farmers) and went in a far country for a long time.

And at the season (vintage time) he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard; but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty (empty-handed)

And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entratedhim shamefully, and sent him away empty. And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out. 

Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him.

But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the HEIR: come, let us kill him, THAT THE INHERITANCE MAY BE OURS.

So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him, What therefore shall the lord (owner) of the vineyard do unto them?

He shall come and destroy these husbandmen, and shall give the vineyard to others. And when they heard it, they said, God forbid.

And he beheld them, and said, What is this then that is written, THE STONE WHICH THE BUILDERS REJECTED,THE SAME IS BECOME THE HEAD OF THE CORNER? Whosoever shall fall on that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. 

And the chief priests and scribes the same hour sought to lay hands on him; and (but) they feared the people: for they perceived (knew) that he had spoken this against them. 

And they watched him, and sent forth spies, which should feign themselves as just men (pretend to be righteous men of God) that they might take hold of his words, that so they might deliver him unto the power and authority of the governor.” Luke 20: 1-20

A lot going there, of course we know Jesus was referencing the fact that God had leased out earth, if you will, and even the term husbandmen- literally, tenants, farmers living there and owing the owner a portion of those crops.

And as he sent the servants, we know these are the prophets, and instead of heeding the words of the prophets, they chose to beat and ostracize them, and what I really love about this passage is this, when the owner sent his son, they KNEW he was the son, never once says anything otherwise, they knew exactly who he was, they wanted him dead for one reason only, so that they could take his inheritance. 

And we also know that Jesus was also speaking to the fact that his own people had rejected him and in their doing so the vineyard would be given to others.

The priests and scribes who were supposed to be in service to him wanted not him, only the power and prestige that their positions brought them and they wanted that so much so that they will kill the very heir to ensure they kept that statue. And we also know that in their rejection of him, that vineyard was given to “others”, we know also that that means “us”, us being those as Jesus said “whosoever will-come”.

That rejection by his own people opening the door for all nations, all kindreds, and all tongues, as it is written, everyone, anywhere the world over now being offered that beautiful vineyard because those who were to keep only wanted to keep it for themselves. 

But we can also see so much more in this.  as the Bible tells us, “nothing new under the sun”, one of my go to scriptures, and there’s not. 

Is there really that much difference from those of  that day beating the servants and killing the son in order to hold on a little longer to what was nevers theirs to hold on to, and those of today that will try to destroy the servants of that same vineyard in order to keep power and prestige of this day? 

Those who will deny the very existence of God, sanction and even enforce the slaughter of the unborn, euthanize the elderly and those they consider “broken beyond repair” all the while pretending it is all for “the greater good” spreading hatred and division, inflaming others to pledge allegiance to them, being worked into such a frenzy that they never stop to investigate a little farther exactly what and who they are pledging that allegiance to. 

Same vineyard, different keepers and they will so anything, anything to try to keep an inheritance that is not theirs.

We know Jesus was talking about this earth and we know that just as they persecuted him, even sending out pretenders to spy on him, to listen to him, to try to trap him and we know he has children the world over under the same persecution today.

Same vineyard, same owner and same old devil working through those who want to take what belongs to a kingdom that shall never be taken.

So think about it today, and see it for what it really is, all the politics, all the power struggles and those who would sell their souls to the devil himself to feed the power hungry beast inside of them, who only want recognition and power and control over others and in gaining that control they will do everything in their power to keep that control, so choose your allies carefully and if it does not adhere absolutely to the word of God, don’t align yourself with it.

And if those “husbandmen” that are like those before that beat the servants, killed the son, are now persecuting you, know this wonderful thought, they did indeed kill the Son but he ROSE and that the next visitor to the vineyard will be the one who created it and he will protect and he is coming back to defend it.

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020/ Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

 

“Lest we forget…”

“At that time, Berodachbaladan, the son of Baladan king of Babylon, sent letters, and a present unto Hezekiah; for he had heard that Hezekiah had been sick.

And Hezekiah hearkened unto them, and shewed them all the house of his precious things (treasures), the silver, and the gold, all the spices, and the precious ointment, and all the house of his armour,and all that was found in his treasures, there was NOTHING in his house, NOR in ALL his dominion that Hezekiah shewed them not

Then came Isaiah the prophet unto king Hezekiah, and said unto him, What said these men? and from whence came they unto thee? (what did they say and where are they from) And Hezekiah said, They are come from a far country, even from Babylon.

And he (Isaiah) said, What have they seen in thine house? And Hezekiah answered, All the things that are in mine house have they seen, there is nothing among my treasures that I have not shewed them.

And Isaiah said unto Hezekiah, Hear the word of the lord, Behold, the days come, that all that is in thine house, and that which thy fathers laid up in store unto this day, shall be carried away into Babylon, nothing shall be left, saith the Lord.” 2 Kings 20:13-17

That was quite a trap, notice the plural of letter, nothing like his good old friend or more to the point, those whom he was already trying to “play nice” with, the Babylonians checking him out seeing how he was doing because they knew he had not been well.

Quite true, so unwell if fact that God had just extended his life, but now with the attention he craved and desire to impress he had in fact invited in the very enemy that would devastate their nation and not only were they invited they were given the grand tour of everything, everything that was held precious, dear, and above all, even what should have been kept most secret, the armour was made known.

Can you only imagine the glee, the laughter in the hearts of the Babylonians once they knew every treasure, every ounce of substance, and most assuredly every possible defense that Hezekiah had?

And you know maybe he just felt like, well, it’s okay, their not really that dangerous, or maybe, he was like, well they may be ruthless conquers but that won’t be like that with me, after all if we can all be “on the same side” a few differences won’t matter. It DID matter and it has always mattered and it will ALWAYS matter.

Enemies are enemies even while pretending to care about you only to know what is there for the taking.

And honestly, social media has all but destroyed us and if we don’t wake up soon , we will be destroyed. We have become like Hezekiah, we have put our hearts and souls, those “precious things” on display for the entire world to see, people, thousands and in some cases millions of people seeing every area of our lives and what truly horrifies me, is as a nation, we are displaying all the hate, mistrust, indifference fighting against each other, in battles that can only be fought through God and that only God can change those darkened hearts.

Which is why we are so warned by Jesus, Matthew 7:6: Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend (tear) you.”

There are countless scriptures on this, you can not reason with someone who has not been spiritually enlightened and they will only attack us farther, there is no changing minds that are blinded and darkened by the enemy and that does not mean to fail to speak for truth and justice. We also must very careful of the snares of lesser of two evils, there is evil, there is good and two wrongs don’t make a right and ends do not justify means.

We are to weigh every single action on the Word of God, not that we always meet this mark, not many of us do, I try and often fail to hit that mark myself, that is why are we human, but we must try and the reason this is so important is this, we can often while in pain and distress create alliances that will, like in the case of Hezekiah cost us more than we would ever willingly pay

We often forget during times of turmoil and unrest is the simple truth that while we are busy being each others enemies, real or perceived, that we collectively have common enemies, and satan has done such  a job with divide and conquer that even the most innocent word or miscommunication can have every word or action being viewed as an attack, we can not have thoughts, feelings, or opinions that differ without being labeled and individuality completely lost because we are categorized, stereotyping each other with the same typecast that we accuse others of, the names may be different but still the exact same action.

And now for what we are totaling forgetting, just as Hezekiah forgot, sure these guys may seem to support you at the moment and sometimes when you’ve been down that can seem like a welcome comfort but while we are showing the treasures of our house, we as Americans still have some serious enemies, and a little dose of reality right here, they do not care, they do not care that we are black, white, american Indian, Mexican-american, Asian American, Jewish, Christian, any documentation or no denomination or not even believe at all. Rich, poor, old, young, chick, guy, straight, or gay and I will tell you want they do care about, that in the enemies opinion,  whether we act like it or not, believe it or not, we are ALL the same

And to sound a little like an editor once answering a child’s letter addressing the existence of Claus, but our question is of not so whimsical a topic, YES AMERICA, YOU DO HAVE ENEMIES and while you are hating each other those enemies are watching and they do not care what you think, what you feel, they hate you because you are AMERICAN. 

We have all been hurt, wounded, and oppressed in one form or the other and I will never deny that and we still are, that is why we have ashes and thorns. ALL of us, people are just mean and there will be mean people in this world until Jesus Christ comes and cleans house which He soon to do, but in the mean time we need to remember a little something,we still have been blessed to live a nation that we are FREE, we can say whatever we want without the fear of retaliation and that does not mean we need to say everything we feel, because often what is said should have never been said at all.

The freedom we are taking for granted was given us from God and we need to appreciate that freedom and do a little less screaming and take a look around the world at what others endure, I can tell you a lot about the backlash and rejection being a pants clad, makeup wearing female preacher in the South will get ya, but I can be thankful knowing that even with the good ol’ boys wagging me down, that I am still free to do as God leads me and I have blessed sisters the world over that would be executed if they dared mention aloud the name of Jesus.

We are blessed to have our Bibles and our churches when our brothers and sisters risk dying for the choice to follow the Gospel. We are blessed to have water, food, or at least access to it when we are in need and many the world over a literally dying of starvation and the threat now is horrifying.

Wake up and realize who is really at work in our country because some of the truest words a human ever muttered were truly “UNITED we stand DIVIDED we fall” and none of this is going to stop the social media and the forces that would spread but it can stop at us, just stop, our job on this earth is to lead others to Jesus and His Kingdom is not of this world and there will be no peace on this earth until that Kingdom comes, but the peace, love, and light you choose to give to another in the midst of all these things will reflect that Kingdom. 

We are here and being here we need to appreciate what we have now and be mindful of those who would love to see us fall, because we do stand for freedom and we do have rights, rights that others in many countries would love to have and I will leave you with these words, God wants to take us all to that “good land”, God wants us to have peace, joy, and love in Him.

“For the Lord God bringeth thee into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and depths that spring out of the valleys and hills.

And of the wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig trees, and pomegranates, a land of olive oil,and honey;

A land wherein thou shalt eat bread without scarceness, thou shalt not lack any thing in it; a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills thou mayest dig brass.

When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the Lord thy God for the good land which he hath given thee. 

Beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statues,which I command thee this day.” Deuteronomy 8:7-11

Well, we know for a surety many, many already have and many others have sold out the Gospel for the candy version and we see the fruits of that and if we don’t get a grip on our current situation I am afraid will we also see those fruits and pray, pray that God will bless our land and that HIS truth will bring the changes that truly need to come.  All the things o this world will fade away and all the heartache and sorrow with that when Jesus wipes every tear away but heaven and hell are eternal, do’t let this world ever make lose sight of that.

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020/ Reverend Nina Brown Johnson

 

 

“Daddy’s shoes… “

“HEAR, ye little children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding. For I give unto you good doctrine, forsake ye not my law. 

For I was my father’s son, and only beloved in the sight of my mother.

He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words; keep my commandments and live.

Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline (turn away) from the words of my mouth.

Forsake her (wisdom) not, and she shall preserve thee; love her and she shall keep thee. Wisdom is the principal thing: therefore get wisdom; and with all thy getting get understanding.

Exalt her (wisdom), and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her. he shall give (place on) thine hand an ornament of grace: a crown of glory she shall deliver unto thee.

Hear, O my son, and receive my sayings; and the years of your life shall be many. I have taught thee in the ways of wisdom; I have lead thee in right paths.

When thou goest, thy steps shall not be straitened (hindered); and when thou runnest, thou shalt not stumble.

Take fast (firm) hold of instruction; let her not go; keep her, for she is thy life. Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men.

AVOID IT, pass not it by (do not travel on it), turn from it and pass away.

For they sleep not, except (unless) they have done mischief; and their sleep is taken away unless they cause some to fall.

For they eat the bread of wickedness, and drink the wine of violence. 

But the path of the just is as a shining light,(bright light)  that shineth more(even brighter)  and more unto that perfect day. 

The way of the wicked is as darkness; they know not at what they stumble.

My son, attend to my words: incline thine ear unto my sayings.

Let them depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.

Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

Put away from the a froward (deceitful) mouth,and perverse lips (a bad mouth) put far from thee.

Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee.

Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established, Turn not to the right hand nor to the left, remove thy foot from evil.” Proverbs 4

Now that my dear friends, you could say is a crash course on Godly advice that was intended not only for believers but in my belief, also for parents to give to their own children and we now that the words from the mouths of parents or parental figures are also the words that truly shape us, make us or unfortunately break us.

That is nothing new and the hatred and lack of common concern one for another that has been passed from one generation seems to have only worsens with time.

It’s devastation more known at the moment, thanks to the technology we now possess but still the same evil that has always been and it lives and it spreads, and it lives and it spreads mainly impart to the bonds, rather broken bonds between fathers and children. For years it was taught for fathers to “rule” with an iron fist  and that is still common in many parts of the world and it is sickening.

There is nothing honorable or remotely masculine about any man that teaches hatred, violence, and batters  his family. And this was never God’s plan for any of it. He is kind, tender, and beautiful.

Jesus died for all of us, not once did he ask anyone to take his place on the cross, no one else could have, but this was the ultimate act of the Fathers love.

He loves us all and he loves us enough that he came to this earth and died for us.

How can anyone even try to convince another than anything other than respect and kindness toward others could ever ever be something God had designed?

It is not just teaching hatred and bigotry that has so damaged, it is not just the physical abuse that is destructive, it is also the the words and actions that make children feel rejected and unloved that leads to issues and especially in daughters  life long challenges that must be to overcome.

My daughter, like most children, found is so delightful as a toddler to “wear” her Dad’s shoes, it was the cutest thing, she’d wander over by the door, where the shoes were kept and suddenly, I see this huge grin and look down and both feet were standing in her Daddy’s shoes and then she would very careful try to walk in these “grown up” shoes.

Her tiny little feet having to lift the weight of those shoes in order to take each step and yet it was a joy to her, because we all have that need inside of us, to “walk” in our parents shoes. I am sure those of you who have children know exactly what I mean, the look of sheer joy that comes to the face of a child once they master a few steps in those shoes. And when you think of this spiritually, as fathers, a man’s shoes can be a delight for their little ones to grow into or they can be ill fitting and cause those children to stumble.

And that choice is completely up to the father.

Does a man want to honour God and love his family as God teaches, or does he want to have  a devil may care attitude and think only of himself, or does he leave uncomfortable, awkwardly fitting shoes behind because he is indifferent and just does not know what  do so he does nothing.   

Our verses above give perfect instruction on what to do, what to teach including teaching to AVOID the snares and destruction’s that we can easily fall into in life.

So to all of you Fathers on your special day, NEVER think it is too late! It is NEVER too late until you are dead! 

If you have maybe not been a great dad, talk to you child, even if that child is grown and if they will not listen, write them a letter, and try to make peace and TRY to rebuild that relationship and even if seems there is no hope, keep trying, because LOVE, LOVE conquers all and maybe you won’t see the results of that right off the bat, you may not even see the results before you leave this world BUT there will be results, healing and closure for your child. Knowing that you tried will impact their lives for good even if they NEVER get to the place of forgiveness that they are comfortable sharing those thoughts with you.

And hold your children, love you children, let them see your tears you compassion because if you don’t the weight of trying to grow into your shoes, shoes that are even to big for you, will break them because we are all human and we need to not be afraid to show that, it is much harder to retain your temper and forbearance than it is to burst into an angry rage, rage is easy, swallowing “pride” not quite as much.

God blesses us in following his word in all areas of our life, and with that stand, STAND for what is right and speak for those who can’t, the Biblical truth concerning violence against women has always been very close to my heart, and I have always believed if men would call out men, concerning it, it would change, just as it is time for the police to police themselves and tear down that code of silence within the brotherhood that has lead to the tragedies we have now, when three stands by while one kills because they are ingrained with the doctrine that there are lines that must not be crossed.

Finally maybe you are reading this and you had a terrible,terrible father rest assured you do not have to mirror him and you do not have to make the same mistakes, you have a heavenly Father who will love you and teach you his ways and help you grow into who he created you to be.

If you are reading this and you are a mother raising your kids alone and there is no way that their father is ever going to be the father they need, you can pray the blessing of God over your children and yourself, you NEED extra help when you are the mother and the father, the breadwinner, homemaker, and every job in between! 

Read this passage, memorize this passage, and PRAY verse five (in bold) over you and your children every day.

Psalm 68:1-5: “Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered, let them also that hate him flee before him. As smoke is driven away, so drive them away: as wax melteth before the fire, so  let the wicked perish before the presence of God.

But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice.  Sing unto God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens, by his name JAH, and rejoice before him.  

A father of the fatherless, and a judge (DEFENDER) of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.”

Finally, to my Brothers in Christ, HAPPY FATHER’S DAY!

May God bless you and your families and keep praying those blessings for your kids and all the kids who do not have a Godly father to ask those blessing of God for them.

Thanks for reading!

Φλογιζω 2020 ΝBJ//Reverend Nina Brown Johnson

 

Justifying the end…

“There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” Proverbs 14:12 

Old, old saying that we are all probably quite familiar with…”The end justify the means.” And we all know that this pretty much is saying that when you have a purpose or achieved goal that nothing, nothing is off limits or out of bounds in achieving that desired end result.

That mentality is quite common in the world and even encouraged and it can be a task for new converts or even old seat warmers to remember when fighting the temptation to steer away from the Word of God and choose “other alternatives” when achieving what they feel is something that must take place or the end result of a situation that they have been faced with and it is very easy to be swayed into believing that whatever it takes God will be okay with because he loves us but when it comes to the Kingdom of Heaven that God has commanded that his people “come out and be separate” and the false doctrine doctrine teaching of that anything and everything is okay with God is an absolute lie.

The world may have changed but God’s standards have not nor will they ever and what He said 2000 years ago is just as true today.

God means what He says and says what He means.

When God saves us, cleanses us and delivers us we are so new, so alive, so clean and there is nothing like the initial feeling of having the sins of a lifetime washed away and being made new  in Christ, but again that is initially.

And as Scripture also teaches us we are babes in Christ, but the time comes for those babes to grow and just as we grow in the natural, growing spiritually involves many ups and downs and the growing process can be at times very painful.

We do not learn to trust God unless we are faced with a situation that seems so hopeless and helpless that our only option is that we must trust God.

We do not learn to walk in faith unless we are suddenly met with a darkened path that can only be walked by faith.

And we will never ever develop the kind of patience that Jesus referred to when he told us that in it we will possess our souls, unless that patience is tried.

Our souls can never understand true peace unless until we have understood true exhaustion.

These are Christian growing pains, because we must grow in Christ and that is a process, day by day, year by year, we grow in Christ and as we grow and the time comes, just a baby bird must learn how to stand up in his nest before he will ever take flight.

We as Christians are allowed to learn “to stand” just as we grow from babies to toddler and before we can ever walk must less run we have to learn how to stand. 

I have noticed more in the recent years than ever, is by convincing Christians that somehow we can still hold fast to the beleif that the end will justify the means.

And that is not saying God leaves us, he never ever leaves us and he is always there to help us and as we start swaying, stumbling, almost falling as we try to stand He is the father who gently takes our hands and steady’s us again.

And this is the place where so many stumble and take hold of the wrong hand and often during these times rather than knowing  that God is there is can be easier to allow the enemy to convince us that if we are to stand we will need to do whatever it takes to stand on our own.

That is NOT God’s idea on how we are to handle anything.

Often through our upbringing and society we can easily fall back into the old mindset and completely forget the truth that we once knew and soon enough struggles will come and then we must decide are we going to revert back to the old way of thinking, listening to the wrong voices of handling life or do we take God at His word.

The best description of this growing process, it’s purpose, and the ease of not quite grasping it can be found in 2 Peter 1:2-9: “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through (in) the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord. According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to (by) glory and virtue:

Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises; that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature HAVING ESCAPED the corruption that is in the world through lust.

And beside this, giving all diligence, add to you faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;

And to knowledge temperance (self-control); and temperance patience (perseverance); and to patience godliness;

And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (love). 

For if these things be in you (are yours) and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren (useless) nor unfruitful in the knowledge of Jesus Christ.

But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off (is short sighted), and hath FORGOTTEN that he was purged (cleansed) from his old sins.”

So you can see this for the process that it is and it is a process, little by little, step by step as God transforms us(as scripture says, by the renewing of our MINDS) to become the en and women he created us to be in Him.

And we must have these attributes. But we are human, we will stumble, we will struggle but again if we accept the fact that this IS part of that process and quit believing the lies of the enemy that tell us that if we were were really “where we should be…” that is the biggest lie of all, we re never where we should be or otherwise we’d be out of here!

This is the same issue that Jesus had with the Pharisees and all the “perfect” people that ostracized those he came to save and he hate it!

And we are often harder on ourselves than the enemy or others could ever be and we have to stop this and accept, really accept Jesus, his forgiveness and get on with our work for the Kingdom while we still have time to work.

Once those doors are shut is is over, once our lives are completed there will be no second chances to come back to earth and complete the job he had given us to do. Remember those treasures you are storing up, remember those crowns that you will be given to lay at the feet of the King?

But above all remember those whose lives you WILL NOT touch and remember the difference that you DID NOT make.

And as harsh as that may sound, it is a very good incentive to us when we think outside of the box of our own head and look at the bigger picture which is why Peter tells us so clearly that we need these attributes, and note that he does not at anytime lay down a number of days, months, years that we should achieve any of these attributes or the total culmination of them all because there is no time frame.

Just that we are to build upon these and we acquire them through the need and dependence upon them to finally reach our true goal- the true “end justification” which is LOVE, love as Christ wants us to love.

It is a process, because even though you may have faith but if you do not have self control what could happen with that faith?

Maybe you have brotherly kindness and can be helpful to those in need and maybe your heart goes out to them and you are lead in someway to reach out to them and perform some sort of act of service but you lack diligence, your heart may reach out but you will not be able to complete the task, without diligence we see nothing through.

And he tells us at the end that IF we lack these things we are SHORT SIGHTED, we cannot see far off. meaning we can not see the end, the ETERNAL outcome and it is then that we are tempted into playing the game of “The end justifies the means” because we are searching for that quick fix.

Another set back to modernism of the church, we can not lie, or avoid the truth or pretend to like those who our hearts are filed with unresolved hurt against, we can not do any of these things out of any agenda because it is still sin and using it as a ‘”Means to an end” is also a sin.

Again part of that growing process, but as we grow in Christ and we CHOOSE to follow a plan that is at the very least questionable in comparison to the Word of God on handling that subject and while that little voice inside is telling us this is not quite right and we reason within ourselves that it is not that big of a deal and reassure ourselves with our own reasoning… it is sin.

Honesty, whether that honesty seems good or bad to others, God requires honesty, and as James 4:17 states “Therefore to him that KNOWETH to do good and doeth it not, to him it IS sin.”

We are not bound by what we do not know,and if we do not understand the things that we should not do and do them, God will let us know in our hearts or by a word of exhortation that we should not do those things, He will ensure we get the message, because He loves us, and that love is unconditional and He wants us to have the life of peace and joy,a life that was purchased by him for us, a life that was paid for in his agony, his blood and his life and when we choose our own path we are devaluing his sacrifice.

If we are to be part of the outpouring of the last days, which we know that we are in, and we truly want to see his Kingdom come we have to get these “little foxes” under control and out of our lives. We all struggle, we all have questions about our identity from time to time, that it normal and God promises are so pure and so perfect, we are PROMISED that he will never leave us, no one loves us like Jesus and no one ever will!

He wants us to succeed and if that means picking us up and dusting us off and giving us a hug every fifteen minutes we are on this earth HE WILL.

He is gentle, kind, and merciful beyond human comprehension and he does not expect us to be anything other than who he created us to be and to keep his commandments, love and honor him and do the best that we personally are capable of doing. 

But in that we also must be willing to choose the correct path and the correct response to the things that life throws our way, it is often said concerning parenting to “choose your battles wisely” and I do believe many fights in battles that were never theirs for the fighting, such as staying in situations out of pride, not wanting to be the “one who gave in” when it would be more wise to walk away

Remember that God wants us to come to him with all that weighs you down, he wants you to bring to him every problem that you can’t solve because in truth we can’t solve anything and we often make things much worse and God will come to our rescue when we ask but often we are left with damages that we should have never had to incur.

Know this, that if you have to pray one hundred times a day that God hears every single pray and he honors humility and truth and when we say God I can’t…. that is exactly when he will let you know that even so, HE CAN and he is not interested in what you can do for yourself he is interested in you trusting him. 

Verses to remember:

1 Corinthians 10:13: “There hath NO temptation taken you but such is COMMON to man; But GOD IS FAITHFUL, who will NEVER suffer (permit) you to be tempted (tested) above that which ye are able;  but will with the temptation ALSO make a way to escape, that ye might be able to bear it.”

It comes to everyone and God will NEVER allow it to destroy you IF you take his way out. But if you choose to follow your own path, you can not blame God because God gives us FREE WILL, the choice is ours.

Romans 6:14: “For sin SHALL NOT ave dominion (rule) over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.”

Plead the blood, plead the blood!

Revelation 12:11: “And they OVERCAME him (the enemy) BY THE BLOOD OF THE LAMB, and by the word of their testimony; and that they loved not their lives unto death.”

To wrap up, we must be our guard, sometimes that path will seem  right but it can lead to the ways of death, spiritually speaking, a little this or a little that, “this one time” is only minute in our reasoning and sin leads to more sins, that is why our beginning verse starts singular, “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” and becomes plural. 

That WAY leads to those WAYS.

So stay on guard and never con yourself or letting anyone else con you into believing that we will ever justify our own on way, only God can justify us and games… God does not play!

Thanks for reading!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020 Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

 

FEAR…

Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”  Luke 12:32

My original thought a week or so ago was that I wanted to write something for St Patrick’s Day and I would name is “Turning Green” and it would be about envy

But My, how things can change in a couple of weeks.

And I am quite sure everyone, everywhere at this moment in time as we are all being quarantined into our own little spots in the world. 

Schools closed, churches advised to close, many working from home, people stocking up food, stocking up supplies and what about all those who can’t?

The President telling us to keep our groups to the number ten. 

Ironically ten is the number of completion and in the end all the face masks and hand sanitizer in the world isn’t going to change the fact that we live on earth and earth is fragile, and we are fragile. 

Whether this was a man-made weapon gone wrong or if it is truly just a mutation of some otherwise harmless virus that somehow manged to evolve itself into a killing machine is completely irrelevant in the end, and yes I did just say that it is completely irrelevant.

In the grand scheme of things, we are human, humans die, no one wants to die but every single day of our lives we face death.

When we get out of bed everyday we face death.Even in the best of health we could die at any second, simply driving down the road we are usually listening to music or planning our day or our thoughts are on pressing things of the moment or future plans but nevertheless, we could potentially die with one wrong move of that vehicle or because of the wrong move of another.

The only difference is that now we are painfully AWARE the danger.

We are extremely aware, the news tells us that we could die, the internet tells that we could die and all that can be heard and seen tells, reaffirming the fact that we could all very well die.

And do know I am not in any way making light of any of it, i have study prophecy for years and there are certain things that are what they are and there are certain things that will be because the Bible has already been written.

Just as Jesus said concerning his own death after His resurrection, from Luke 24:44: “And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were in written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.”

So we know what is written is written and it all has to come to pass just as God said that it would but God has hope and comfort in all things.

So I am not getting into that at the moment but it is good time to really reflect on the reality that there are some very scary, quite horrifying events that will take place on this earth.

The time of all those things are for God and God alone to know and be judge of but Jesus gave us very clear markers to know how far we have came on that path and he gave us those because he does not want us to be terrified and blindsided that those things would come and we would not know what was happening. 

And so we go on into this post, we are now as a people, not a nation, not a race, but all of humankind dealing with this one common enemy- the virus- whose name I have heard so much these past weeks that I don’t even want to use it.

But we now all have a common foe, and that foe is bringing global fear and the fear is the true enemy, not the virus.

Fear destroys, it kills, it steals, it takes your peace and your joy and even though you live, it steals your very life because if we are so terrified, consumed by the though of losing our lives how are really ever going to live?

So I want to “talk” to you about fear, perfectly normal to be afraid, David was very afraid when Saul was trying to kill him,  Peter was horrified and Daniel really did not want to be eaten alive but he knew he had to trust God, he knew this was a very real possibility and he knew that he would be thrown into the lions and he was but God delivered him.   

Jesus telling us to “Fear not, little flock…” is one of my favorite verses, that is God telling YOU, me, all that serve and love Him, the most simple of messages for us to not be afraid, a message we have heard often through lives from childhood as our Mothers, Fathers, and other adults reassured to not be afraid, letting us know that everything would be okay, and we trusted that.

Now think of this. that verse was spoken by the one who holds the universe in his hands and is surely will take care of you.

So please don’t look at this world, like an old friend used to tell me “Just don’t look down” keep your eyes focused on the good things, happy things and think about things that bring you joy and peace, this virus and this time of uncertainty and fear will not be forever but God and his eternal promises are forever.

So read his word and pray and pray for all those whoa re trapped in that  fear because fear is destructive and its affects can last well past the course of those things that bring that fear to us.

And may I please suggest that you read Psalm 91 and quote it and believe it over you, and your loved ones.

I want to also leave you with a though tonight, you know when God brought the plagues upon Eygpt and they were covered in absolute darkness the Hebrews, God’s people still had light in all their dwellings.  SAME GOD and the same God will take care of you and see us all through whatever this world holds and whatever is yet to unfold.

Praying God’s peace and love, blessings and most of all his perfect love, which casts out all fear for you and yours this season of life.

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020/ Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

 

 

Angels, Roses, & True Love : Part 2 “Angels”

 

“The angel of the Lord encampeth round about the that fear him, and delivereth them.” Psalm 34:7

I really had a rough time thinking about this one. There are so many stories in the Bible of the interactions between those of us on earth and the host of heaven, who are sent to us, I believe, more often than we could ever imagine.

And it is truly hard to write for six years dealing in the same subject matter and not get redundant, and redundant I do not wish to be, so this post with be heavy laden with golden links that can be clicked on for more posts concerning heaven meeting earth.

But we have all experienced those moments in life, usually near fatal accidents that somehow, miraculously we were spared and stories upon stories that can have only one explanation divine intervention carried out by servants of the most Divine.

We can get into the mindset of this by recalling the stories of old.

One my personal favorites the angel that visited Hagar not once but TWICE.

Daniel whose life was spared through his faith in God as God sent an angel to “shut the mouths of the lions” which I believe this meant that the lions were calmed and lulled they knew the angel was there as we know from the story of the beaten donkey  , the donkey that kept stopping because she saw what her evil rider could not… the angel whose compassion toward that donkey almost brought an even earlier end to Balaam. 

The angel Gabriel proclaiming blessed news to Mary, and again angels coming to proclaim to simple shepherds that that blessed promise had been fulfilled.

Other births had been foretold as those of the angelic realm paid visits also to Samson’s parents, his mother first and then at the prayer of Manoah, God sent the angel again to clarify how this child should be raised.

Not to mention Zacahrias, the father of John the Baptist was also visited by Gabriel as he performed his duties in the temple. 

There are stories of encounter after encounter with everything from bring prophecy and good news, to warning of danger ahead and assurance that the future will be brighter as in Hagar’s case.

An angel fed Elijah when he was so discouraged he could no longer continue. Jacob wrestled with the angel before becoming Israel, Joshua was given comfort meeting the captain of the host that were for them.

Stories of the Lord sending his angels to fight against those that were to strong for his children to fight and opening the eyes of the servant of Elisha to allow him to see just how many were really there for that fight if needed. Other times he sent them forth in judgment  to destroy those that sought to destroy his chosen or defiled his temple.

They announced his birth, his resurrection, and spoke to the disciples at his ascension assuring them that he would indeed return just as he went away and they will continue to watch over us and do his will until that day. 

So when I think of God and I think of love it is very difficult to not think of the angels and his beauty, grace,and kindness in sending them to watch over us and when I think of all the times in life all of us could have encountered an angel and not have ever even known is even more amazing to me! 

“Let brotherly love continue. Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”  Hebrews 13:1-2

Our gentle warning to always respond in love (I fail this one often!) and a bigger warning that we should always be very careful how we treat others because we can actually be talking with an angel.

I want to point out something here, if you were to ever encounter an angel posing as human to check your true usage of the golden rule  you would probably never even know that you had but just know that an angel would never test you on anything contrary to the word of God.

They would never request anything of you that is wrong or illegal or immoral. And they are NEVER to be worshiped. 

“And I John saw these things and heard them, and when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things. Then saith he unto me, See thou do it NOT: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings (words) of this book: WORSHIP GOD.Revelation 22:8,9

I love “angels”. I have angels on almost anything you can imagine and love giving Christmas cards with scriptures of “Glad Tidings” and art work of the same.

When we think of  all the beautiful cards with truly inspirational sayings and thoughts of love and peace with gorgeous illustrations of what we perceive the angels to be, lets always bear in mind one thing.

These thoughts and sentiments that we have came to cherish are actually a reflection of the love God has sent to us, the only difference is his angels ARE real!

So I want to give you some of that good news, the words from God concerning those of the heavenly host that he does in deed give “charge over you” to watch over you, comfort you, protect you, and be there in the loneliest, most barren place of hopelessness .

Much like the place Hagar  found herself in, through no fault of her own and just when she thought EVERYTHING was hopeless and she truly believed that she and much worse her son were going to die in that wilderness, God sent his angel with not only words of comfort, words of hope, and the PROMISE of a future for her son but also he miraculously sent them water so that they could physical continue on that journey.

God know all of our needs emotional, spiritual, and physical and he addressed all these for Hagar, taking care first of the emotional, then the spiritual, by giving her reassurance delivered no less than through an angel, and then her physical need was met.

And he does the same for us, we just have to believe and be open and mindful that even when we feel alone and it looks like there is no one on our side, Jesus is and he sends his angels as proof of that.

John was told to not worship them because they are workers together with us for the kingdom of God. Which is so important to say in a world that wants to worship everything except the one true God and always be careful of media posts and sites that touting messages from angels or connect with your angels.

We don’t connect with them… God sends them to us, they are ever present.

There is always the question that if God is real and angels are real why does bad things happen? 

That is explained quite simply as being on this earth, being human, God never promised this earth would be easy, it is not our eternal home, we are not  in the realm of immortality and the pain and heartache felt by one is surely felt by another.

And the best way to be mindful of that, especially when we are going through particularly painful seasons is remembering a very crucial lesson, Jesus was Mary’s   firstborn son and he was also God in human form and will for ever be and Jesus who was the perfect, sinless, Lamb of God DIED for us so that we could live.

The Bible is also full of stories of heartache and blessings given for the generations by those near the end of their own.

The apostles Peter and Paul both writing of the deaths that were soon to come and yet both of these men spared, miraculously rescued by the angels and not just once.

Peter after having been arrested and chained between two guards had this encounter as recorded in Acts 12:7-10: “And, behold, the angel  of the Lord came upon him (stood by), and a light shined in the prison: and he smote (tapped) Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly, And his chains fell off from his hands.

And the angel said unto him, Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals (get dressed and put on your shoes), so he did. And he saith unto him, Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me.

And he went out, and followed him; and wist (knew) not that it was true (real) which was done by the angel; but he thought that he saw a vision.

When they were past the first and second ward (guard posts), they came unto an iron gate that leadeth unto the city, which opened to them on his own accord (meaning the gate miraculously opened): and they went out, and passed on through one street; and forthwith the angel departed from him.”

Paul as he was in the midst of the storm while a prisoner on a seemingly doomed ship, had the to speak of his encounter and what they must do to survive:

Acts 27:22-26: “And now I exhort (urge) you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but of the ship (the ship would be destroyed).

For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve. Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee.

Wherefore sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me. Howbeit we must be cast (run aground) upon a certain island.”

The angel reminding Paul, bringing God’s words and promises over his life back to his mind, assuring him that no matter how dark  it was not quite time.

It was not yet time for them to go to that eternal home but when the time started to come they knew and they never questioned God’s love for them.

The one common thread that weaves it all together is this, it is only temporary and the entire reason for our faith is believing that there is so much better, in the life yet to come.

Lets actually just quickly look at what they both said concerning their inevitable deaths.

Paul wrote this ending his directions to Timothy concerning what he must do to be a successful minister for the Kingdom of Heaven.

2 Timothy 4:6: For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure (death) is at hand.”

And Peter, also giving instructions as his last words before saying this:

2 Peter 1:13-15: “Yea, I think it meet (is right), as long as I am in this tabernacle (body), to stir you up by putting you in remembrance:

Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle (die), even as our Lord Jesus has shown me.

Moreover I will endeavor that ye may be able after my decease (death) to have these things in remembrance always.”

How could they have such comfort and such peace? Because they knew, they had the Lord and they knew had the angelic host and we never alone. 

They are with us from birth, through childhood, just as Jesus said concerning the children when he gave this warning from Matthew 18:10: “Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.”

When we have ran amok, wasting our inheritance like the prodigal sons and daughters that we are, hanging out with the wrong people and as messed up.as we are he still loves us.He still watches over us and still his angels watch over us and Jesus said this about the moment that they are observing as we come into the truth.

Luke 15:10: “Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repeneth.”

These are they who cease not to praise the Lord and there are those who are night and day around the throne and the only time we are told they are silent is just before judgment is began against earth. They are with you in life and they will be with us in death as again Jesus relays the story of Lazarus.

Luke 16:22: ” And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: and the rich man died and was buried.”

Quite a contrast the rich man died and was buried (we know that he also lifted up his eyes in hell, never have accepted salvation)  but Lazarus carried by the angels.

Start to finish, God send us his messengers and when we have doubt and fears, loneliness and grief we should always rest in that comfort, as they have been with us silently and invisibly here, one day we will be with them there, we also we be part of that host of heaven but until then rest assured knowing that they are always around!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020/ Rev Nina Brown Johnson

Posts in series: Angels, Roses, & True Love/ Intro

Angels,Roses,& True Love/ part 3 “A rose by only one name”

“Patient reminder”

“But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire (complete), wanting (lacking) nothing.” James 1:4

All the things that could be said of the need of patience, the most notable of all, “patience is a virtue”, and it truly is but there is so much more to such a simple thought.

And to get to that thought, we’ll back up on this passage a little bit.

“Listen” to his greeting carefully, as we go to James 1:1-3: “James, a servant of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trails):  Knowing THIS, that the trying (testing) of your faith worketh (produces) patience.”

And that patience that comes from those “tests” and  that trying and stretching of your faith, think of the saying “…would try the patience of a saint.” 

Jesus stressed this to us many times, even telling us “In your patience possess ye your souls.”  

James was in a sense telling us that those tough breaks, rocky roads, and crooked paths that we navigate in life, those “tests” are to be all counted as joy, and all that comes with being human, being alive, and are often simply “part of life” all those things are to be not so much as viewed as still images, each shot overwhelming in sight but more to be considered into the big picture of growing, developing, and becoming the men and women that God created us to be. And that is that perfection that will come from all that “trying”. 

The definition of perfection in Christ does NOT mean our definition of perfection, to be one hundred percent, to have absolutely no need of improvement.

From far from it, the spiritual  definition of perfection is to allow ourselves to be conformed to the will of God, to be “blameless”, meaning keeping a level head and clear thoughts even in the midst of times that are anything but peaceful. And notice that it is the “perfect” work that brings that “perfection” about.

Our true hope, as believers is not even IN this world, it is not in this life, it is in the eternal, a thought that seems silly to those who do not believe, but as a child of God, you know the truth, but during “trying” times it is so easy to lose sight of those things we can not see, that blessed assurance that there is so much more to our beings than living and dying.

And we can’t lose that hope, Hebrews 11: 34(c)-36: “…knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven a better and an enduring substance (possession). Cast not away (Don’t throw it away) therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.”

So whatever you are “waiting” for, whatever you are believing for in your life and in your walk with Christ, keep waiting and keep believing.

And if does not turn out exactly as you had envisioned, never think that somehow means that God does not love you or that you are completely off base, life does indeed have  away of working out completely different that we would have ever imagined but nothing is ever surprising to God.

Don’t give up on your hopes, dreams, and desires of your ministerial heart.

Puzzles are nothing more than oddly shaped pieces scattered about until it is patiently and carefully put together to reveal a beautiful complex image and life is much the same and the reason some of those “pieces” are so oddly cut will remain a mystery on this earth and we will not have those answers until the day they are revealed by Jesus himself when he wipes every tear away.

But I will tell you this, the definition of patience is this:”the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.”

That my friends speaks for itself. I’ll leave you with the words of our favorite David. Psalm 25:13-14: ” I had fainted, (I would have given up) unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living

Wait (wait in faith) on the Lord: be of good courage (try you best to be positive), and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.

May the Lord bless and keep you this week.

Rev. Nina Brown Johnson/Φλογιζω/ NBJ 2019

 

Suited up

‘And I brethren, when I came to you, came NOT with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.

For I determined NOT to know any thing among you save (except) Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

And I was with you IN weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

And my speech and my preaching was NOT with enticing (persuasive) words of man’s wisdom, BUT in the demonstration of the Spirit and of power:

That your faith should NOT stand in the wisdom of men, BUT IN THE POWER OF GOD.” Corinthians 2:1-5 

I love how Paul points out for us that he never bothered hiding his own personal weakness and his fears and that he never once let anyone believe that he had a life of rainbows and roses, quite the opposite and you know that is what made him such an inspiration, as I have often written about him and this post will probably be very similar to one past but it is on my heart, so that I will obey.

THE WISDOM OF MEN.

We got into that a few posts back, how this world and all that we are taught is completely contrary to GOD and to his teachings and his word. Just as we are taught to be proud and willful, self-sufficient, solve your own problems, and of course the one that has the sole (read that as “SOUL”) purpose of getting our heads so thick and our hearts so hardened that we refuse to accept the Gospel.

The world view teaching of “you made your bed, you lie in it” and that is what people buy into when the refuse forgiveness because they feel that they don’t deserve it, BUT no one deserved it! Not the sweetest little Grandma, not the most wonderful volunteer, not one who risked their lives saving others, not the best moral person who gives half of all they own to the homeless.

Not a one, because no one DESERVED the gift God gave us when he gave his only begotten Son as a sinless sacrifice to cover all the sins of all mankind. Because we are even BORN into sin, so no matter how good, how sweet, even how gentle, or kind we are, we STILL must be under the blood.

The blood is proof positive that we do indeed BELONG in the kingdom of God and we only belong there because Jesus wants us there and by cleansing us and changing us, from the blood that we are born into as our mother’s birth us, we undergo a second birth, born again, born of him and instead of covered in the blood from our mother’s wombs we are covered in the blood of the Lamb.

And that is a foreign idea compared to what we have been taught in this world. This is why we are so reminded all through scripture that it IS BY FAITH. And FAITH is simply BELIEVING.

And as I have often heard others in the past expound on the definition of faith, one thought stand out, we DO have faith, even carnally, we flip a switch we EXPECT a light to come on, we turn a key we EXPECT something to open, we take a course we EXPECT some sort of result. The same is true for eternal faith, only difference is that we have been conditioned to EXPECT these reactions for certain actions in the natural BUT we must LEARN to EXPECT reactions to our invisible faith. 

And God already told us that we are ALL given a measure of that faith. So we have it, we just have to learn to develop and exercise it and by doing so it will increase and we CAN believe for the impossible in a world that through conditioning limits us to only its human possibilities. And that is why we must learn to completely block the sound of the wisdom of men.

Meaning, there will always be someone who have a don’t for your do and a why you can’t when God says you can. There are always going to be those who give you one hundred reasons why you can not believe or expect  the outcome you are praying for.

Corinthians 3:18,19: “Let no man deceive himself; If any man among you seemeth to wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God…” 

So know that the only support we will get during times of standing in faith and believing for what may seem impossible, is the from other believers, this is also one reason I personally believe that it is also important to limit what information you give and who you give it to because if you are telling someone in the world or that just flat-out does not believe in God at all, and you tell them what you are having faith for or a special prayer you have, then they are only going to view that with contempt and negativity and satan loves nothing more than to send people to spew doubt all over your faith.

Sometimes people want as many as possible praying because they doubt their own faith but I’m telling you often it is better to be like the man who asked Jesus to “help mine unbelief” and just ask God to strengthen your faith, of course you grown faith like you grow patience and we know NOT to ask for patience because they only way we learn patience is by having our patience TESTED and so I always feel better praying for help instead of asking for more patience, because LIFE gives you more than enough problems that WILL exercise your patience WITHOUT asking for more. But again everyone has to pray HOW they feel lead.

So now to my main point, Now is a good time to thank you for your PATIENCE in my ramblings there 😉 Some of our toughest moments as soldiers of Christ come in the battle against the wisdom of this world.

For some reason when I think of standing against the wisdom of this world, I get the the story of David in my head, you know when Goliath was taunting Israel, and David asked WHO was this uncircumcised philistine that should DEFY the armies of the LIVING GOD.

You know it may be considered socially unacceptable to call a doctor, lawyer, or teacher or whomever it may be that is belittling you and your faith, an”uncircumcised philistine” out loud but we could probably certainly think it while they are attempting to crush our hope with their worldly wisdom.

Try thinking that next time :), while you block out their rattling! It would certainly give your fight a boost! (So glad a church is NOT responsible for my writings! Don’t need a disclaimer that the thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and do not reflect blah, blah, you know like the infomercials) but I do seriously think that would be a good tactic to keep the right frame of mind.

Now that we got that took care of, I want to remind us all of our armour, again I have written a lot on it and I do not want to be repetitive so without dragging it out here is a basic refresher. It will REMIND us of the faith we stand in and in the POWER of our God. Ephesians 6:10-18: “Finally my brethren, BE STRONG IN THE LORD, and IN THE POWER OF HIS MIGHT.

Put on the WHOLE armour of God,that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (schemes) of the devil. for we wrestle NOT against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of THE darkness of THIS WORLD, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Wherefore take unto you (take up) YOUR whole armour of God that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and HAVING DONE ALL TO STAND.

STAND therefore, having your lions girt about with the truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; and ABOVE ALL, TAKING THE SHIELD OF FAITH, wherewith ye shall be able to quench ALL the fiery darts of the wicked.

And take the helmet of salvation, and THE SWORD OF THE SPIRIT, WHICH IS THE WORD OF GOD; Praying ALWAYS with ALL prayer, and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with ALL perseverance and supplication for ALL saints.

Notice with all list that he also told us to pray for all our brothers and sisters also as they battle and if you are new to this, your best asset is going to be a King James Study Bible, you will find a list of “go to” scriptures for virtually every need you have. They are usually found in the back and are such a blessing, because the WORD of GOD IS POWER and His word stands forever and IS the supreme weapon and NOTHING on earth and certainly nothing of hell can ever defeat one word of it. So get suited up and you WILL stand by the power of God and by faith in him!

Thanks for reading and whatever battle you are facing and whatever your special prayer is today, I pray that God blesses you and keep you and rewards your faith with victories from the realm of impossibility!

As always, love & peace to you till next time!

For a little more on these subjects: SHIELD & SWORD   BEHIND THE SHIELD PART 1

BEHIND THE SHIELD PART 2      Jehovah God IS THERE

and for the battle of losing a loved one      “With these words…” 

 

Φλογιζω NBJ 2018

COUNTING WRONG

ARCHIVED* Original post 03/08/2015

My favorite all time quote is from Ronald Reagan in response to Muammar Qaddafi’s far out plans of taking on America, “He counted on America to be passive and he counted wrong”.

This was inadvertently brought back to mind last night. It is par for the course over the last few weeks and it seemed perfect for today’s topic.
The enemy, and sometimes other people seem to believe they can put you in, what is their perception of your place, and you will passively stay there but just as Libya soon learned the meaning of those infamous words, there are times that we have to stand up for ourselves or be trampled into the ground.
To be honest my first day out in this new adventure I almost gave up. I had the awesome privilege of receiving enough, how shall we say, unwanted drama through social media that I seriously questioned whether the good would outweigh the bad.

These were the very waters I had tried to avoid having to tread because I knew I’d have to fight some battles that I would have preferred to sit out.
Bad on my part, that is why Satan throws stuff like this at us, he knows what buttons to push to shut us up, back us off, and set us down.
I truly thought once about deleting it all and trying another route, but you know what, God did not create me to be a coward, sure, as the old saying goes they can kill you but they can’t eat you!

Well, I actually guess they could but hopefully you would at least taste bad!!

God sent me wonderful encouragement through others with his word and uplifting thoughts they shared that were right on time.
Once God’s spirit started rising up in me and I grew a better backbone, I decided that I will not let anyone take from me what God gave.

 I can take the remarks about the pants, I can deal with the old school belief that if you wear make-up you’re a quote unquote Jezebel, I can deal with the boys only club of ministry society.

What I can’t deal with is anyone touching my anointing and that is where the fight will get bloody.
If you are battling oppression in any form today, I want to hopefully encourage us all with this list of people who stood up to not just THE ENEMY but to all those who wished to interfere with the preordained work of God.
The Pharaoh counted on taking Abraham’s wife for his harem, but when God himself appeared to this pagan in a dream letting him know assuredly that he was a good as dead because she belonged to another.

As he counted up the gifts he gave trying to gain favor as he sent them on their way, he realized when he had accessed just how easily he thought she could be obtained, he found out with the loss of his riches that he had counted wrong.
Joseph’s brothers counted on destroying him, but upon discovering his new identity as second in power over all of Egypt they learned they had counted wrong.
Pharaoh counted on killing off the Hebrew sons, but with God’s sovereign plan the one baby he missed, that would grow up in his own house would bring about Egypt’s downfall. When he counted babies, he counted wrong.
Pharaoh counted on continuing to enslave the Hebrews after being commanded  from God to free them, finally having been hit with nine plagues, he conceded that he may have counted wrong.
Pharaoh counted on the Red Sea to allow his armies passage, but he and his host all drown there, and for his last time he counted wrong.
Korah counted on overthrowing Moses. Then the ground opened up and swallowed all that pertained to him.  Guess he too counted wrong.
Balak counted on hiring Balaam to curse Israel. 

Only to discover his plan had been intercepted by a Holy God and now only blessing could be spoken, yep, counted wrong.
Balaam counting on getting by disobeying God, and beating a donkey, once his eyes had been opened to the angel who informed him that he would have gladly killed him, not even aware how close he came to death and he surely regretted that he counted wrong!
Depraved men counted on forcibly taking and sexually assaulting Lot’s angelic house guests, only to blinded through the door and the entire place destroyed from the face of the earth, they had counted wrong.
Philistines counted on enjoying their “Let’s torture Samson” party,
as party sayings go, he really brought the house down, counting on torturing God ‘s anointed for the fun of it, thousands at that party had counted wrong.
Sisera, the enemy of Israel counted on a nice warm resting place when Jael took him in, had he lived through her nailing his head to the floor, well he would have known when he counted her as a friend, he counted wrong.
Goliath laughed hysterically at David’s small size counting on taking this boy down. God’s guided stone sending this beast to the ground and when his head came off, all of his army knew when they counted on destroying Israel that they counted wrong.
Absalom who counted on overthrowing his father, soon found himself suspended from a tree branch, caught by his beautiful hair. I’m sure before being ran through by the sword, he knew he counted wrong.
Nebuchadnezzar counted on torching the three Hebrew boys, once he saw not only were they fireproof but also not alone, to his horror he realized he counted wrong.
Haman counted on hanging Mordecai and killing all the Jews, after a chat between the King and Esther lead him to his gallows, those who had encouraged him in his plan knew they all had counted wrong.
Belshazzar counted on using vessels of the Lord as stem ware  for his pagan party, his death warrant was soon written upon his wall,
that’s what happens when you count wrong and attempt to defile a vessel, any vessel that is consecrated unto God.
Darius’ overseers counted on ridding themselves of Daniel by turning him lion food, but once morning came and Daniel was still very much alive, they themselves were thrown in the den, these are men who counted wrong, once again.
Satan and the armies of hell counted on taking all power once they had Jesus dead, but to their surprise he tore down their stronghold taking the keys to their kingdom, all the sting of death, overcoming the grave by resurrecting from his death.

They counted on defeating him and there will never again be doubt of just how badly they counted and they counted wrong.

We could go on for days, but I hope this encourages someone.
We do get discouraged, but when that happens give it to the Lord, let him raise up his spirit in you.
Think of it as spiritual wrestling, you may down but never let them make it to the three count.
                               You may be growing weak and losing strength fast and your enemies may think you’ve been counted out but with God as your Captain you can let them know really fast, if they really believe your out of the match and down for the count then obviously they have very badly counted wrong.

Φλογιζω/ All rights reserved. Reverend Nina BrownJohnson/ baresoulphlogizo 2015