“David, Bathsheba, & Putting it behind you”

Romans 3:23.-26:”For all have sinned, and come (fall) short of the glory of God. Being justified freely (without any cost) by his grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.;

Whom God hath set forth to be a propriation (a mercy seat) through faith in his blood, to declare (demonstrate) his righteousness; for the remission (passing over) of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness; that he might be just, and the JUSTIFIER of of him which believeth in Jesus.”

We all dig Romans 3;23, it is one of the most comforting verses in the Bible, but when you go just a bit farther with it you can really see how we can use that verse to put the enemy and self condemnation to flight.

We all have sinned and sometimes we can fall off that boat as the saying goes but God’s grace is so perfectly described in that passage.

And we never want to be of those who abuse grace or rather their concept of it being a free ticket to sin at will, as often as you will, those people are not saved, they do not know Jesus, and if the refuse to see the truth and repent they will be in for a very sad awakening.

But this post is not about all that, we want to talk about the true covering of grace when we have fallen short, and we are very aware of it, be glad of that, when we feel conviction, when we feel remorse, and we feel repentance, that means we can still feel!

Let me remind you of a passage, Ephesians 4:17-24:”This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth (from this point forward) walk not as other Gentiles walk in the vanity (futility) of their mind. 

Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness (hardening) of their heart.

Who being PAST FEELING have given themselves over to lasciviousness to work all uncleanness with greediness.

But you have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in him.

That ye put off concerning the former converstaion (conduct) the old man, which was corrupt according to deceitful lusts. And be renewed in the spirit of your mind.

And that ye put on a new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.”

Lusts can be many things, sin can be many things and satan knows what buttons to push, if he can get us mad and we lose self control and say or do things that we later regret.

He can send temptation in many forms, alcohol, drugssex, or by getting you run with the wrong crowd, or an attraction or an affair with another person, which is what happened to King David, which we will get into in a bit, but it can literally be anything and the fact that we feel that remorse, that regret, that repentance means that our hearts are still toward God.

The devil loves nothing more that sending something your way and then raking you relentlessly over the coals after you have fallen into the trap that he set for that very reason. That is how he causes so many to needlesslessy forfeit their salvation.

A very wise child asked me once what was the difference between Judas, who betrayed Jesus and Peter who denied Jesus, the difference as this child could even see as they pondered their own question, is this, Peter repented.

Judas, who was never right with God and was even stealing from their money bag, and in his greed, allowed the devil to use him and sell Jesus’ very life for thirty pieces of silver and when the devil left him, and his conscience kicked in and kicked hard, he choose to commit suicide instead of asking forgiveness.

That is what I wanted to point out in that passage, the mind that is blinded to truth not only commits sin but does so with “greediness”, meaning they wallow in it, love it, can’t get enough because they can no longer feel conviction.

And that passage was written to remind us that we are to forego the old ways and allow God to make us new and that is by having our minds renewed in him, his love, and his mercy.

Think about this, Jesus told Peter to forgive seventy time seven, so how much more will he forgive us when we are truly sorry for whatever it is that we have done, which gets us to God’s faithfulness, 1 John 1:9: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

And confession there is to God, you never have to tell your darkest secrets to any human, we are to have trusted prayer partners that we can confide in and talk to about anything we are having trouble with, but we are only required to confess to God, who already knows it anyway.

We have to admit our shortcomings so that we can be forgiven and healed, and with each hurdle we jump in life, the stronger we become and the faster we can run.

God uses everything to make us stronger for the kingdom and there is nothing that ever shocks God, he knows every single trip, stumble, or outright face plant that we will have to get back up from on our journeys but that’s the thing, he is always there and will always pick us back up

As you see it is pointed out in that passage that the new man is created after God and God said that David was a man after his own heart, which is why, I believe, it was on my heart to do this post with this story, David was after God’s heart but David was also human and David like all of us , messed up we all make mistakes and some are more severe than others, it is a good reminder that none are perfect and when we stumble or heaven forbid, even fall, we have to get up and go on.

Most have heard and if you have, please just bare with it, but if you haven’t, “listen” carefully.

“And it came to pass. after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the children (people) of Ammon, and besieged Rabbah, But David tarried (stayed) still at Jerusalem.

And it came to pass in at eveningtide (evening) that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house; and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself, and the woman was very beautiful to look upon.

And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?

And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness (had already had her monthly cycle); and she returned unto her own house.

And the woman conceived, and sent and told David, and said, I am with child.

And David sent to Joab, saying, Send me Uriah the Hittite, And Joab sent Uriah to David. And when Uriah was come unto him, David demanded (asked) of him how Joab did, and how the people did, and how the war prospered.

And David said to Uriah, Go down to thy house, wash thy feet. And Uriah departed out of the king’s house, and there followed him a mess of meat (gift of food) from the king.

But Uriah slept at the door of the king’s house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down to his house.

And when they had told David, saying, Uriah went not down unto his house, David said unto Uriah, Camest thou not from thy journey? why then didst thou not go down unto thine house (Are you not on leave, why did you not go home)?

And Uriah said unto David, The ark, and Israel, and Judah, abide in tents; and my lord, Joab, and the servants of my lord, are encamped in the open fields; shall I then go into mine house to eat and to drink, and to lie with my wife? as thou livest, and as my soul liveth, I will not do this thing.

And David said unto Uriah. Tarry (stay) here to day also, and to morrow I will let thee depart. So Uriah abode in Jerusalem that day, and the morrow.

And when David had called him, he did eat and drink before him; and he made him drunk (got him drunk): and at even (evening) he went out to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but went not down to his house.

And it came to pass in the morning, David wrote a letter to Joab, and sent it by the hand of Uriah.

And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest (fiercest) battle, and retire (retreat) ye from him, that he may be smitten (struck down) and die.

And it came to pass, when Joab observed the city, that he assigned Uriah unto a place where he knew the valiant men were.

And the men of the city went out, and fought with Joab: and there fell some of the people of the servants of David; and Uriah the Hittite died there also

The Joab sent and told David all the things concerning the war; And charged the messenger, saying, When thou hast made an end of telling the matters of the war unto the king, And if it be taht the king’s wrath arise, and he say unto thee,Wherefore approached ye so nigh (why did you go so near) unto the city when ye dd fight? knew ye not that they would shoot from the wall?

Who smote Abimelech the son of Jerubesheth? did not a woman cast a piece of millstone upon him from the wall, that he died in Thebez? why went ye nigh the wall? then say thou, Thy servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also.

So the messenger went, and came and shewed (told) David all that Joab had sent him for. And the messenger said unto David, Surely the men prevailed against us, and came out unto us into a field, and we were upon them even unto the entering of the gate.

And the shooters shot from off the wall upon thy servants, and some of the king’s servants be dead, and thy servant Uriah the Hittite is dead also.

Then David said unto the messenger, Thus shalt thou say unto Joab, Let not this thing displease thee, for sword devoureth one as well as another; make thy battle more strong against the city, and overthrow it: and encourage thou him.” 2 Samuel 11:1-25

Notice a recurring theme here? It came to pass, sin and progression of sin is often slow and insidious, David could have stopped this at any time, he should have been out in battle, he could have turned and walked back into his house when he saw her nude, He could have gotten the point to back off when he was told this was married and married to one of his own men.

He could have resisted the temptation to have her fetched, which was a bad deal because him being king they all had to do as he said, and the truest telling in it all was once he found out that she was pregnant he had Uriah brought back,making small talk and buttering him up, just hoping he would go home and sleep with his wife, and when that failed he tried the old get him drunk routine, but Uriah was too loyal for any of it.

And David, for all he was, all he had done, all his compassion, and all that he had been and his almost unparalleled devotion to the Lord, had in this season of his life turned but for second and that devotion had now became to himself, at this moment, all he cared about was what he wanted, he did not care about Bathsheba, that was lust, he did not care, at that moment about the baby, because his plan was that Uriah would think he had fathered the child, all David had on his mind was cleaning up the mess

So he sent one of his most loyal soldiers into battle carrying his own death warrant.

And good old Joab, he didn’t quite retreat as he had been told, and not only Uriah, but others also died, gave their lives in simitude of battle, but this battle was only carry out David’s deception.

Battles that God had been allowing them victories in, victories for their kingdom and now that battle was used as a weapon against one of their own, killing others in the process.

Joab even covering David’s back with his message of how the battle had went wrong, that they just got too close, dressing it up with old war stories to prove how things like this can happen, he made it quite the show, knowing in his heart and GOD knowing, that they only did this to get Uriah killed.

And David in reply that equates this sentiment, “Oh well, people die” and  go back and tell Joab it’s okay, don’t feel bad, just be safe next time.

They laid it on thick with this, talk about manipulation and deception…

I apologize that this is lengthy, but it is a complex story and rather than ask you to read the rest of it on your own, or make this a two part post, I’d rather give it to you here all in one post,

“And when the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned for her husband.

And when her mourning was past, David sent and fetched her to his house, and she became his wife, and bare him a son. But the thing that David had done displeased the Lord.

And the Lord sent Nathan unto David, And he came unto him, and said unto him, There were two men in one city; the one rich, the other poor,

The rich man had exceeding many flocks and herds:

But the poor man had nothing, save (except) one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up: and it grew together with him, and with his children; it did eat of his own meat (food), and drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was unto him as a daughter.

And there came a traveller unto the rich man, and he spared (refused) to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to dress (to slaughter) for the wayfaring man that was come unto him; but took the poor man’s lamb, and dressed it for the man that was come to him,

And David’s anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, As the Lord liveth, the man that has done this thing shall surely (deserves to) die.

And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity.” 2 Samuel 11:26,27 & 2 Samuel 12:1-6

Sometimes we don’t even realize….

“And Nathan said to David, Thou art (You are) the man, thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul;

And I gave thee thy master’s house, and thy master’s wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things (much more).

Wherefore hast thou (Why have you) despised the commandment of the Lord, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and taken his wife to be thy wife, and hath slain him with the sword of Ammon.

Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house, because thou hast despised me, and taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife.

Thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will raise up evil (adversity) against thee out of thine own house, and I will take wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbour. and he shall lie with them in the sight of the sun.

For thou didst it secretly; but  I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun.

And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord, and Nathan said unto David, The Lord hath also put away thy sin, thou shalt not die.” 2 samuel 12:7-13

That’s the lesson for us, David did not even realize how far he had gone because he was so caught up in it, but once he was enlightened by the prophet, he repented.

God forgave David, he still faced the consequences of his actions because of the severity in killing Uriah and taking his wife, and those who died with him in that battle.

But David pressed on, so if sin starts coming your way, don’t let it “come to pass”, stop it, right where it is, just stop right there and be quick to repent, turn away from temptations before they have a chance to turn you away from God and if you feeling remorseful, repent, go on, and don’t look back.

You know that baby died, but God blessed David and Bathsheba with another son Solomon, who had everything his heart could have desired, but still he fell into pagan worship, BUT repented and wrote one the most beautiful books in the Bible, Ecclesiastes, all about the lessons he had learned on that journey, and the most predominate is that, is this… God “makes everything beautiful in his time” and he does, So get up and go on,, put yesterday behind you and have joy in a brand new tomorrow!

Love & Peace till next time! thank you for reading!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2021/ Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

 

“The patience of Job”

“And there was a day when his (Job’s) sons and his daughters were sitting and drinking wine in their eldest brother’s house. And THERE CAME  a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen WERE plowing, and the asses FEEDING beside them; And the Sabeans FELL upon them (attacked), and took them ALL away; yea, and they have SLAIN the servants with the edge of the sword; And I ONLY AM ESCAPED TO TELL THEE; 

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, there came ALSO ANOTHER, and said The fire of God IS fallen from heaven, and hath BURNED UP the sheep, AND the servants, and CONSUMED (destroyed) THEM: And I ONLY AM ESCAPED TO TELL THEE.

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, THERE CAME ALSO ANOTHER, and said, The Chaldeans made (formed) out three bands, and FELL UPON (raided) the camels, and have carried the away, yea, and SLAIN the servants with the edge of the sword; and I ONLY AM ESCAPED ALONE TO TELL THEE.

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, THERE CAME ALSO ANOTHER, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters WERE eating and drinking wine in the eldest brother’s house; And, behold, THERE CAME a great wind from the wilderness, and SMOTE the four corners of the house, and IT FELL UPON THE YOUNG MEN AND THEY ARE DEAD; and I ONLY AM ESCAPED ALONE TO TELL THEE.” JOB 1: 13-19

So many points in the story of Job, it is hard to know where to start and if you are feeling down, I suggest reading Job. It will make almost anyone rethink their own suffering.

What he went through was TRULY from satan himself, that is how the story began.  Job WAS a righteous man, he did everything he could to honor God on his behalf and even on the behalf of his children. God had blessed Job and Job WAS pleasing to God.

But to have been around for this onslaught of messengers, coming so closely together that one was YET giving Job bad news as another was standing there with more to report would have probably made it appear otherwise.

That IS often exactly what the enemy wants. Notice how all these things FELL, just as the enemy would like to see God’s chosen fall, and that was his plan in all these tragedies to make Job fall because of what had fallen on him. 

And he wanted Job to know it and to know it fast, as EVERY messenger repeated that they alone WERE escaped to tell what had taken place. And this story has been used many times, I have used it many times myself but I felt I needed to again because so often what is mistaken as “God” is actually an attack by the enemy and not understanding what is really going on leads people to discouragement and hopelessness, and leads them away from God rather than to him.

Again, that is why the devil does it. And at the time the story starts, a perfectly normal, delightful day, just like any other day, or it would have seemed, they were enjoying life, the family was close, having dinner being gathered together.

Even the animals were just having an average day, the ox were working, the donkeys eating, and suddenly the attack came, five hundred yoke of oxen and five hundred donkeys stolen away and those who had been in charge of their care, murdered. 

And as this was in the process of taking place, the “fire of God” had fallen, translates to “hot thunderbolts” which we would know as lightning, BUT we also know that THIS WAS NOT FROM GOD and can you only imagine what a lightning storm would appear as that could in an instant completely burn up SEVEN THOUSAND sheep and all those that tended them?

And at the same moment yet another rogue group divided into three groups attack and steal three thousand camels, again slaughtering those who tended them. And simultaneously as this is still being told, more bad news comes, a strange, monstrous wind had come actually hitting ALL sides of the brother’s house, caving it in and killing all of his children in one single attack. 

Unimaginable, but it is the first of what Job would endure and many times as attacks came, we to, fall into the trap of thinking that somehow we  are the problem, that we have done something wrong, or offended God, or these things would not happen but the truth is Job went through this because he belonged to God.

Now to back this train up a little bit it and see what was really going on here, this was a contest of the “powers”, God has ALL power, He is supreme and nothing in the universe has more power than Jehovah God, but Satan likes to think that he will be like God, but he is quite mistaken, however he is still NOT human and is very powerful and Job was a human caught in the middle of this show down.

Job 1:6-12: “Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came in among them.  And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? (where did you come from?) Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

REMEMBER that the “devil goes about as a roaring lion SEEKING whom he MAY DEVOUR”}

 And the Lord said unto Satan, HAST THOU CONSIDERED MY SERVANT JOB that there IS NONE LIKE HIM IN THE EARTH, a perfect (blameless) and upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth (shuns) evil?

The Satan answered the Lord, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought? Hast not thou made an hedge (protection) about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance (possessions) are increased in the land. But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, ALL THAT HE HATH IS IN THY POWER (your hand) ; ONLY UPON HIMSELF (his physical body) PUT NOT FORTH THINE HAND, so Satan went forth from the presence of God.

Now, as I said I have written posts similar to this but this was on my heart to really get to this… Satan was looking for someone to destroy, someone he could bring down and what God asked him literally translates to asking had he set his heart on Job.

God pointed out the impeccable character of Job, for God to refer to a human as someone whose worship, and dedication to the Lord was like no one else on earth is a statement to end all statements.

So of course satan wanted to destroy him because he hates God and he hates anyone who loves God and he hates all humans anyway because God created us in His image.

So satan gets all cocky and says that Job ONLY loves and serves God because of what god had done for him, and that God protected him and blessed him and only because of this and that if God didn’t do all these things for job and would take his hand of protection from Job that Job would change his tune and curse God.

So God decided to allow satan to try to “prove his point” but actually God was proving His!

Job STILL loved God , Job STILL worshipped God and even losing EVERYTHING under horrific circumstances, so horrific that everyone knew these were not natural occurrences and a sequence of events such as these could only be orchestrated by supernatural forces. 

And of course Job thought he had offended God and Job’s “friends”were there to make sure he KNEW that he had, (of course we know they were wrong) but there are always people there to kick you when you’re down and tell you that “you brought it on yourself” or that something is cosmic retaliation for some failure you had along the way.

 AGAIN, God does NOT work that way! When you serve God, love God, and do your best to honor Him in your life, I promise bad things ARE not coming from Him and sometimes when we get down, we need to be reminded of that.

So this massive attack waged on every possible scale and at every possible angle, with the only  restriction being that he could not harm Job’s body, Job 1:22 ends it this way: ” In ALL this Job sinned NOT, NOR charged God foolishly.”

Job stayed faithful to the Lord, he did not fall and he certainly did not question God or blame God, or accuse God of being wrong. Think satan was happy about that?

Sometimes the fight is only half over… Job 2:1-8: “AGAIN there was a day  the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them and presented himself before the Lord.

And the Lord said unto Satan, From whence camest thou? And Satan answered the Lord, and said from going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect (blameless) and upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth (shuns) evil?

And STILL he holdeth fast his integrity, ALTHOUGH thou movest (incited) me against him, to destroy him WITHOUT a cause.

And Satan answered the Lord, and said, Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life. But put forth thine hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse thee to thy face.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; BUT save his life.  So went Satan forth from the presence of the Lord, and SMOTE Job with sore boils FROM THE SOLE OF HIS FOOT UNTO HIS CROWN. And he took him a potsherd to scrape himself withal (with) and SAT DOWN AMONG THE ASHES.”

By this point Job wife even told him to just curse God and die, she was undoubtedly a mess herself with all that had happened and watching him suffer and maybe someone is telling you because of persecutions or attacks to give up on God that “it is not worth it” Don’t ever believe that!

Job was one of a kind and hopefully in comparison to the attack waged on him, your situation looks a little brighter.

But know IT IS WORTH IT and as Job WAS restored beyond measure because he stood the test that satan waged, you will be too. 

God protects us, God blesses us, and whatever valley we are allowed to walk through is going to lead to a beautiful mountain top.

And just like those ashes Job sat in, our ashes are turned, anything the enemy has destroyed, burned to ashes will be returned as pure beauty. IT WILL BE WORTH IT.

The enemy wants you destroyed either way and God wants good for you and He alone IS your protection, your shield, and hedge, so going back, turning our backs on God IS never an option.

As Peter replied to Jesus when asked was he too going to leave, and his answer was WHERE could he go? Because Jesus alone has the word of life.

Seek God, pray, and surround yourself with others who will also pray for you and walk with you through whatever you are going through but know you won’t go in all alone, we NEED each other and HOLD ON, HOLD ON, HOLD ON!

James 5:11: ” Behold, we count them happy (BLESSED) which ENDURE. ye have heard the PATIENCE (perseverance) OF JOB, and have seen the end of the Lord ( intended by the Lord) that THE LORD IS VERY PITIFUL (COMPASSIONATE) AND OF TENDER MERCY.” 

So carefully think about your situations and recognize traps for what they are and remember that the Lord IS love and He is compassionate and things that are hurting you DO NOT come from Him but He is faithful to deliver you from those things if you wait in patience for that deliverance. 

Take a lesson from Job and DON’T be quick to question and never blame God, more people fall because of lies of the enemy in these areas that any other trick he has. he pulls the old “If God loved you, WHY did this happen?” routine, ALL attacks ARE from the enemy and then some things just happen, simply just part of being alive in this world. THIS life, this world IS NEVER gonna be perfect, IT IS NOT MEANT TO BE.

The next life, the resurrected life, the New Jerusalem life IS the perfect life where there will BE no death, sorrow, or sickness.

But too often people let the enemy convince them that because a tragedy happened HERE  that means God does not care, or does not love them but that IS not true and we are NEVER told in the Bible that being saved makes us exempt from being HUMAN, in HUMAN BODIES, and SUFFERING COMPLETELY HUMAN CONDITIONS AND OCCURRENCES.

Some things are just unfortunately part of THIS life, but that is YOUR PATIENCE and YOUR HOPE.

This life is not all there is!

This life is only temporary and our hope is NOT in this life.

But God will bless you, protect you, and bring good things into our lives but that still does not exempt us from the natural.

Don’t throw that eternal assurance away because of the lies of a force that wants nothing more than to take you to hell anyway!

Outside of Jesus Christ there is no hope.

I hope this has encouraged you in someway and that you will find peace through the storm and that the storms soon comes to an end, but until then hold on because you have the blessed assurance that ALL storms do end!

Luke 21:19: “In your patience possess ye your souls.”  

Φλογιζω NBJ 2017

Original post date10/17/3017  REVISITED 10/20/2019 

Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

“REVIVED”

DALETH Psalm 119:25-32: “My soul cleaveth unto (clings to) the dust; quicken (revive) thou me according to thy word.

I have declared my ways, and thou heardest (answered) me; teach me thy statutes.

Make me to understand thy precepts; so shall I talk of (meditate on)  thy wondrous works.

My soul melteth (weeps) for heaviness (grief); strengthen thou me according to thy word.

Remove from me the way of lying; and grant me thy law graciously.

I have chosen the way of truth; thy judgments have I laid before me. I have stuck unto (cling to) they testimonies; O lord, put me not to shame.

I will run the way of thy commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart.”

I want to tell you something today, you may feel hopeless, lost, not lost without Jesus, but lost as in alone not knowing which way to turn because so many things have came against you.

I want to assure you that God always sees, he always knows and when you are at your weakest point that is when the POWER of God rests on the strongest! This is the gleanings and the heart cries that open the ears of heaven to send forth miracles in answer to your prayers. Jesus is so close to us in those sorrows, those tears, and I want to give you a passage of scripture from Apostle Paul as he came to this realization himself.

2 Corinthians 12: 7-10: “And I lest I be exalted above measure through the abundance of revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet (beat) me, lest I be exalted above measure. 

For this thing I besought (pleaded with) the Lord thrice (three times), that it might depart from me.

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength (power) is made perfect in weakness. 

Most gladly therefore I will rather glory in my infirmities (weaknesses) THAT THE POWER OF CHRIST MAY REST UPON ME.

Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches,in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: FOR WHEN I AM WEAK, THEN AM I STRONG.”  

He came to understand that if he never suffered, never struggled that he would take for granted all the gifts God had given him, because God had called Paul to a tremendous task for the kingdom and with that call he had been gifted with tongues, prophecy, healing, and miracles, he had even prayed for resurrection of the young man that had fallen from the window and died, God answered Paul’s prayer by sending life into the man again.

So it would have seemed a bit strange to him, I am sure, that when he has God to deliver him from that that was a torment and God did not, buta after the third prayer when Jesus SPOKE to him, assuring him that HIS GRACE was all Paul needed, BECAUSE the more Paul needed the more POWER Jesus shined on him. He knew the more life, or the devil, or circumstance “threw at him” the closer Jesus would be.

And that “quickening” from God, as we are also given this verse describing the work that God does in us, the same Spirit, that resurrection Power that raised Jesus from the dead.

Romans 8:11: “But if the Spirit of him that raised Jesus from the dead dwell in you, HE THAT RAISED UP JESUS FROM THE DEAD SHALL ALSO QUICKEN YOUR MORTAL BODIES BY HIS SPIRIT THAT DWELLETH IN YOU.”

Pray the verse above over yourself, your circumstance, “Quicken thou me according to thy word.”

Which is simply praying for God’s revival in us as he has already promised in his word.

Mention of promises, I want to leave you with this, from our beautiful, Holy Lord and very soon coming King, who left us these words, so we would have HOPE during dark days and know that the darkness will not last forever but will one day be replaced with his glorious light, and in New Jerusalem, God’s holy city, where his children will dwell with him, there will be no night, no darkness, just forever in His holy presence and his glorious light, no tears, no hunger, no pain.

Never again the struggles of this earth. And this IS Jesus’ promise to you.

John 14:12-18: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go to my Father.

And whatsoever ye ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye ask any thing in my name, I will do it.

If ye love me, keep my commandments. 

And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter (helper) that he may abide with you for ever.

Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, AND SHALL BE IN YOU.

I WILL NOT LEAVE YOU COMFORTLESS.”

Blessing and Peace until next time.

Also for a little more encouragement please check out:

“In the pits?”        “In the den”

Making it through the night……          “The patience of Job”

Φλογιζω NBJ 2020/ Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

“The patience of Job”

“And there was a day when his (Job’s) sons and his daughters were sitting and drinking wine in their eldest brother’s house. And THERE CAME  a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen WERE plowing, and the asses FEEDING beside them; And the Sabeans FELL upon them (attacked), and took them ALL away; yea, and they have SLAIN the servants with the edge of the sword; And I ONLY AM ESCAPED TO TELL THEE; 

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, there came ALSO ANOTHER, and said The fire of God IS fallen from heaven, and hath BURNED UP the sheep, AND the servants, and CONSUMED (destroyed) THEM: And I ONLY AM ESCAPED TO TELL THEE.

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, THERE CAME ALSO ANOTHER, and said, The Chaldeans made (formed) out three bands, and FELL UPON (raided) the camels, and have carried the away, yea, and SLAIN the servants with the edge of the sword; and I ONLY AM ESCAPED ALONE TO TELL THEE.

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, THERE CAME ALSO ANOTHER, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters WERE eating and drinking wine in the eldest brother’s house; And, behold, THERE CAME a great wind from the wilderness, and SMOTE the four corners of the house, and IT FELL UPON THE YOUNG MEN AND THEY ARE DEAD; and I ONLY AM ESCAPED ALONE TO TELL THEE.” JOB 1: 13-19

So many points in the story of Job, it is hard to know where to start and if you are feeling down, I suggest reading Job. It will make almost anyone rethink their own suffering.

What he went through was TRULY from satan himself, that is how the story began.  Job WAS a righteous man, he did everything he could to honor God on his behalf and even on the behalf of his children. God had blessed Job and Job WAS pleasing to God.

But to have been around for this onslaught of messengers, coming so closely together that one was YET giving Job bad news as another was standing there with more to report would have probably made it appear otherwise.

That IS often exactly what the enemy wants. Notice how all these things FELL, just as the enemy would like to see God’s chosen fall, and that was his plan in all these tragedies to make Job fall because of what had fallen on him. 

And he wanted Job to know it and to know it fast, as EVERY messenger repeated that they alone WERE escaped to tell what had taken place. And this story has been used many times, I have used it many times myself but I felt I needed to again because so often what is mistaken as “God” is actually an attack by the enemy and not understanding what is really going on leads people to discouragement and hopelessness, and leads them away from God rather than to him.

Again, that is why the devil does it. And at the time the story starts, a perfectly normal, delightful day, just like any other day, or it would have seemed, they were enjoying life, the family was close, having dinner being gathered together.

Even the animals were just having an average day, the ox were working, the donkeys eating, and suddenly the attack came, five hundred yoke of oxen and five hundred donkeys stolen away and those who had been in charge of their care, murdered. 

And as this was in the process of taking place, the “fire of God” had fallen, translates to “hot thunderbolts” which we would know as lightning, BUT we also know that THIS WAS NOT FROM GOD and can you only imagine what a lightning storm would appear as that could in an instant completely burn up SEVEN THOUSAND sheep and all those that tended them?

And at the same moment yet another rogue group divided into three groups attack and steal three thousand camels, again slaughtering those who tended them. And simultaneously as this is still being told, more bad news comes, a strange, monstrous wind had come actually hitting ALL sides of the brother’s house, caving it in and killing all of his children in one single attack. 

Unimaginable, but it is the first of what Job would endure and many times as attacks came, we to, fall into the trap of thinking that somehow we  are the problem, that we have done something wrong, or offended God, or these things would not happen but the truth is Job went through this because he belonged to God.

Now to back this train up a little bit it and see what was really going on here, this was a contest of the “powers”, God has ALL power, He is supreme and nothing in the universe has more power than Jehovah God, but Satan likes to think that he will be like God, but he is quite mistaken, however he is still NOT human and is very powerful and Job was a human caught in the middle of this show down.

Job 1:6-12: “Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came in among them.  And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? (where did you come from?) Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

REMEMBER that the “devil goes about as a roaring lion SEEKING whom he MAY DEVOUR”}

 And the Lord said unto Satan, HAST THOU CONSIDERED MY SERVANT JOB that there IS NONE LIKE HIM IN THE EARTH, a perfect (blameless) and upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth (shuns) evil?

The Satan answered the Lord, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought? Hast not thou made an hedge (protection) about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance (possessions) are increased in the land. But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, ALL THAT HE HATH IS IN THY POWER (your hand) ; ONLY UPON HIMSELF (his physical body) PUT NOT FORTH THINE HAND, so Satan went forth from the presence of God.

Now, as I said I have written posts similar to this but this was on my heart to really get to this… Satan was looking for someone to destroy, someone he could bring down and what God asked him literally translates to asking had he set his heart on Job.

God pointed out the impeccable character of Job, for God to refer to a human as someone whose worship, and dedication to the Lord was like no one else on earth is a statement to end all statements.

So of course satan wanted to destroy him because he hates God and he hates anyone who loves God and he hates all humans anyway because God created us in His image.

So satan gets all cocky and says that Job ONLY loves and serves God because of what god had done for him, and that God protected him and blessed him and only because of this and that if God didn’t do all these things for job and would take his hand of protection from Job that Job would change his tune and curse God.

So God decided to allow satan to try to “prove his point” but actually God was proving His!

Job STILL loved God , Job STILL worshipped God and even losing EVERYTHING under horrific circumstances, so horrific that everyone knew these were not natural occurrences and a sequence of events such as these could only be orchestrated by supernatural forces. 

And of course Job thought he had offended God and Job’s “friends”were there to make sure he KNEW that he had, (of course we know they were wrong) but there are always people there to kick you when you’re down and tell you that “you brought it on yourself” or that something is cosmic retaliation for some failure you had along the way.

 AGAIN, God does NOT work that way! When you serve God, love God, and do your best to honor Him in your life, I promise bad things ARE not coming from Him and sometimes when we get down, we need to be reminded of that.

So this massive attack waged on every possible scale and at every possible angle, with the only  restriction being that he could not harm Job’s body, Job 1:22 ends it this way: ” In ALL this Job sinned NOT, NOR charged God foolishly.”

Job stayed faithful to the Lord, he did not fall and he certainly did not question God or blame God, or accuse God of being wrong. Think satan was happy about that?

Sometimes the fight is only half over… Job 2:1-8: “AGAIN there was a day  the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them and presented himself before the Lord.

And the Lord said unto Satan, From whence camest thou? And Satan answered the Lord, and said from going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect (blameless) and upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth (shuns) evil?

And STILL he holdeth fast his integrity, ALTHOUGH thou movest (incited) me against him, to destroy him WITHOUT a cause.

And Satan answered the Lord, and said, Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life. But put forth thine hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse thee to thy face.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; BUT save his life.  So went Satan forth from the presence of the Lord, and SMOTE Job with sore boils FROM THE SOLE OF HIS FOOT UNTO HIS CROWN. And he took him a potsherd to scrape himself withal (with) and SAT DOWN AMONG THE ASHES.”

By this point Job wife even told him to just curse God and die, she was undoubtedly a mess herself with all that had happened and watching him suffer and maybe someone is telling you because of persecutions or attacks to give up on God that “it is not worth it” Don’t ever believe that!

Job was one of a kind and hopefully in comparison to the attack waged on him, your situation looks a little brighter.

But know IT IS WORTH IT and as Job WAS restored beyond measure because he stood the test that satan waged, you will be too. 

God protects us, God blesses us, and whatever valley we are allowed to walk through is going to lead to a beautiful mountain top.

And just like those ashes Job sat in, our ashes are turned, anything the enemy has destroyed, burned to ashes will be returned as pure beauty. IT WILL BE WORTH IT.

The enemy wants you destroyed either way and God wants good for you and He alone IS your protection, your shield, and hedge, so going back, turning our backs on God IS never an option.

As Peter replied to Jesus when asked was he too going to leave, and his answer was WHERE could he go? Because Jesus alone has the word of life.

Seek God, pray, and surround yourself with others who will also pray for you and walk with you through whatever you are going through but know you won’t go in all alone, we NEED each other and HOLD ON, HOLD ON, HOLD ON!

James 5:11: ” Behold, we count them happy (BLESSED) which ENDURE. ye have heard the PATIENCE (perseverance) OF JOB, and have seen the end of the Lord ( intended by the Lord) that THE LORD IS VERY PITIFUL (COMPASSIONATE) AND OF TENDER MERCY.” 

So carefully think about your situations and recognize traps for what they are and remember that the Lord IS love and He is compassionate and things that are hurting you DO NOT come from Him but He is faithful to deliver you from those things if you wait in patience for that deliverance. 

Take a lesson from Job and DON’T be quick to question and never blame God, more people fall because of lies of the enemy in these areas that any other trick he has. he pulls the old “If God loved you, WHY did this happen?” routine, ALL attacks ARE from the enemy and then some things just happen, simply just part of being alive in this world. THIS life, this world IS NEVER gonna be perfect, IT IS NOT MEANT TO BE.

The next life, the resurrected life, the New Jerusalem life IS the perfect life where there will BE no death, sorrow, or sickness.

But too often people let the enemy convince them that because a tragedy happened HERE  that means God does not care, or does not love them but that IS not true and we are NEVER told in the Bible that being saved makes us exempt from being HUMAN, in HUMAN BODIES, and SUFFERING COMPLETELY HUMAN CONDITIONS AND OCCURRENCES.

Some things are just unfortunately part of THIS life, but that is YOUR PATIENCE and YOUR HOPE.

This life is not all there is!

This life is only temporary and our hope is NOT in this life.

But God will bless you, protect you, and bring good things into our lives but that still does not exempt us from the natural.

Don’t throw that eternal assurance away because of the lies of a force that wants nothing more than to take you to hell anyway!

Outside of Jesus Christ there is no hope.

I hope this has encouraged you in someway and that you will find peace through the storm and that the storms soon comes to an end, but until then hold on because you have the blessed assurance that ALL storms do end!

Luke 21:19: “In your patience possess ye your souls.”  

Φλογιζω NBJ 2017

Original post date10/17/3017  REVISITED 10/20/2019 

Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

“Gazingstock”

1 CORINTHIANS 4:9-13: “For I think that God hath set forth (displayed) us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death; for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to the angels, and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake ( the world opinion) but ye are wise in Christ; we ARE weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we ARE despised.

Even unto the present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked (poorly clothed), and ARE buffeted (beaten) and have no certain dwelling place; and labour, working with our own hands: BEING reviled, we bless; BEING persecuted, we suffer (endure) it. BEING defamed (slandered) we entreat (encourage): we ARE made the filth of this world, and ARE the offscouring of all things unto this day. ”

We often think of the Apostles as almost super human, almost as if, had they needed to, they could have run through stone buildings.

We are half right, considering that they, with the exception of Paul hung out with Jesus and SAW Him ascend into heaven and combined they were FREED by angels, SAW demons cast out and SAW the dead resurrected back to life.

BUT the super part belonged to the LORD the other is just human!
As we read the verse above, nothing about that sounds glamorous, or remotely desirable as a life style and these are the things we often forget.

I truly believe that this is what causes so many “new” Christians to slip and some seasoned ones to misplace their robes and end up wearing a coat made of jade 

For the most part it is preventable.

Once we accept Christ, and especially if we have been given the gift of the Holy Ghost, we have that wonderful newness.

Everything IS brand new, WE ARE New but then life, emotions, and the enemy come and often no one has ever told the “new” person that what they are going through is NORMAL for the course and no one helps them through that maze and they end up lost in it and give up even trying to find their way home.

The second group comes into play, as often having a fight with hell all the way to the altar and sometimes passed the altar and into the water because they have a call on their life.

And once they do make it “in” that fight only intensifies and I really, really wish I could give a “one word will make it all go away” answer right here.

BUT it does not exist.
Once this particular spiritual warfare has been engaged, it can not be disengaged because:
#1. The calling of God on lives is determined before birth and “they do not expire until we do.”
#2. Giving up is not an option, you will lose your salvation, and everything you have ALREADY fought through will have been for nothing.
#3. Outside of the will of God and without His protection, satan will chew you up and spit you out.
#4 Your fall will affect every single person you love and all those whom you were to minister to.
#5 THE most important reason is that JESUS died for you and saved you and He will NEVER let you be tested beyond what you can handle and a servant can not be above His Master, to reign with Christ we must suffer with Christ.
“Think It not strange…” sometimes battles are so fierce and dark that you can not even see daylight but you must remember you war against principalities and powers of the air.

I don’t know how I would have ever made it had God not blessed me with the people he did in my life and ministers that would share their own personal battle stories and some so hard to fathom, that my problems would pale in comparison.

Without the knowledge that these things happened to people whom I knew were Godly and doing their best in their walk, I could have never kept my head above water, I held onto every single word and would remember their stories and how they got through it and that they were still standing and that I serve the same God.

HEBREWS 10:32,33: “But call to remembrance the former days, in which after ye were illuminated (enlightened), ye ENDURED a GREAT FIGHT OF AFFLICTIONS (struggle with sufferings); partly, (in part) whilst ye were made a GAZINGSTOCK (SPECTACLE) BOTH BY REPROACHES AND AFFLICTIONS (tribulations) and partly (in part) whilst YE BECAME COMPANIONS OF THEM THAT WERE SO USED (treated).

What can we say there?

The days after your salvation, such a GREAT FIGHT with sufferings and troubles. You were as one that the world would look at and stare upon, as one in medieval stocks for the entire village to mock and ridicule.
Reproaches of those who laugh at your salvation and the enemy who questions “Where is your God now?”

But it is due in part so that YOU CAN become who you are to become in Christ.

1 PETER 1;4-8,10: “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 (along with) this, giving ALL DILIGENCE, ADD to your faith virtue, and to virtue knowledge: AND to knowledge temperance ( self-control); AND to temperance patience; AND to patience godliness; AND to godliness brotherly kindness; AND to brotherly kindness CHARITY ( love).
FOR if these thing be in you (are yours) and abound, they make you that YE SHALL NEITHER BE BARREN NOR UNFRUITFUL IN THE KNOWLEDGE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. Wherefore the rather brethren, GIVE DILIGENCE TO MAKE YOUR CALLING AND ELECTION SURE: FOR IF YOU DO THESE THINGS YE SHALL NEVER FAIL.”

So you have heard it from Paul and you have heard it from Peter, now they are some pretty reliable sources!!!

All these things WILL work to your good and all these things WILL produce every quality needed to be productive in the Kingdom of God.
If you are “new” please stay close and active in a good Bible believing church, read along with them, find ministers that you enjoy hearing and enjoy the word, don’t pressure yourself or let anyone else pressure you, the only opinion of you that should matter is God’s and He is awesome and will teach you all things.

Find a good prayer partner that you can trust, that can pray with you when life comes at you or temptation comes calling and if you fall of the boat, repent and get back on the boat!

And keep trying, IT WILL GET BETTER and IT WILL GET EASIER.
If you are in group two, seek the old paths and surround yourself with prayer warriors and try to spend time with older ones who have been there and done that and they WILL encourage you and give you godly advice that is imperative to stay on track in your calling.

And the best news is this, once you successfully war against an attack of the enemy, he will no more use that same weapon, because it is no longer effective.

Once you make it through a tough battle you will soon find that the battle made you stronger and you will be able to stand against attacks that would have put you out earlier in your ministry.

You will also be better at seeing attacks coming and be prepared more easily, not to say there will never be blind sides, but when it is said and done, you will be glad you stayed the course, because medals are not just given, they must be won.
Φλογιζω NB/2016

! Original post 02/2016.  Still battling blue screen, Please check out this blast from posts past!🐦

 

 

 

 

“The patience of Job”

“And there was a day when his (Job’s) sons and his daughters were sitting and drinking wine in their eldest brother’s house. And THERE CAME  a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen WERE plowing, and the asses FEEDING beside them; And the Sabeans FELL upon them (attacked), and took them ALL away; yea, and they have SLAIN the servants with the edge of the sword; And I ONLY AM ESCAPED TO TELL THEE; 

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, there came ALSO ANOTHER, and said The fire of God IS fallen from heaven, and hath BURNED UP the sheep, AND the servants, and CONSUMED (destroyed) THEM: And I ONLY AM ESCAPED TO TELL THEE.

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, THERE CAME ALSO ANOTHER, and said, The Chaldeans made (formed) out three bands, and FELL UPON (raided) the camels, and have carried the away, yea, and SLAIN the servants with the edge of the sword; and I ONLY AM ESCAPED ALONE TO TELL THEE.

WHILE HE WAS YET SPEAKING, THERE CAME ALSO ANOTHER, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters WERE eating and drinking wine in the eldest brother’s house; And, behold, THERE CAME a great wind from the wilderness, and SMOTE the four corners of the house, and IT FELL UPON THE YOUNG MEN AND THEY ARE DEAD; and I ONLY AM ESCAPED ALONE TO TELL THEE.” JOB 1: 13-19

So many points in the story of Job, it is hard to know where to start and if you are feeling down, I suggest reading Job. It will make almost anyone rethink their own suffering.

What he went through was TRULY from satan himself, that is how the story began.  Job WAS a righteous man, he did everything he could to honor God on his behalf and even on the behalf of his children. God had blessed Job and Job WAS pleasing to God.

But to have been around for this onslaught of messengers, coming so closely together that one was YET giving Job bad news as another was standing there with more to report would have probably made it appear otherwise.

That IS often exactly what the enemy wants. Notice how all these thing FELL, just as the enemy would like to see God’s chosen fall, and that was his plan in all these tragedies to make Job fall because of what had fallen on him. 

And he wanted Job to know it and to know it fast, as EVERY messenger repeated that they alone WERE escaped to tell what had taken place. And this story has been used many times, I have used it many times myself but I felt I needed to again because so often what is mistaken as “God” is actually an attack by the enemy and not understanding what is really going on leads people to discouragement and hopelessness, and leads them away from God rather than to him.

Again, that is why the devil does it. And at the time the story starts, a perfectly normal, delightful day, just like any other day, or it would have seemed, they were enjoying life, the family was close, having dinner being gathered together.

Even the animals were just having an average day, the ox were working, the donkeys eating, and suddenly the attack came, five hundred yoke of oxen and five hundred donkeys stolen away and those who had been in charge of their care, murdered. 

And as this was in the process of taking place, the “fire of God” had fallen, translates to “hot thunderbolts” which we would know as lightning, BUT we also know that THIS WAS NOT FROM GOD and can you only imagine what a lightning storm would appear as that could in an instant completely burn up SEVEN THOUSAND sheep and all those that tended them?

And at the same moment yet another rogue group divided into three groups attack and steal three thousand camels, again slaughtering those who tended them. And simultaneously as this is still being told, more bad news comes, a strange, monstrous wind had come actually hitting ALL sides of the brother’s house, caving it in and killing all of his children in one single attack. 

Unimaginable, but it is the first of what Job would endure and many times as attacks came, we to, fall into the trap of thinking that somehow we  are the problem, that we have done something wrong, or offended God, or these things would not happen but the truth is Job went through this because he belonged to God.

Now to back this train up a little bit it and see what was really going on here, this was a contest of the “powers”, God has ALL power, He is supreme and nothing in the universe has more power than Jehovah God, but Satan likes to think that he will be like God, but he is quite mistaken, however he is still NOT human and is very powerful and Job was a human caught in the middle of this show down.

Job 1:6-12: “Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came in among them.  And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? (where did you come from?) Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

REMEMBER that the “devil goes about as a roaring lion SEEKING whom he MAY DEVOUR”}

 And the Lord said unto Satan, HAST THOU CONSIDERED MY SERVANT JOB that there IS NONE LIKE HIM IN THE EARTH, a perfect (blameless) and upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth (shuns) evil?

The Satan answered the Lord, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought? Hast not thou made an hedge (protection) about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance (possessions) are increased in the land. But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, ALL THAT HE HATH IS IN THY POWER (your hand) ; ONLY UPON HIMSELF (his physical body) PUT NOT FORTH THINE HAND, so Satan went forth from the presence of God.

Now, as I said I have written posts similar to this but this was on my heart to really get to this… Satan was looking for someone to destroy, someone he could bring down and what God asked him literally translates to asking had he set his heart on Job.

God pointed out the impeccable character of Job, for God to refer to a human as someone whose worship, and dedication to the Lord was like no one else on earth is a statement to end all statements.

So of course satan wanted to destroy him because he hates God and he hates anyone who loves God and he hates all humans anyway because God created us in His image.

So satan gets all cocky and says that Job ONLY loves and serves God because of what god had done for him, and that god protected him and blessed him and only because of this and that if God didn’t do all these things for job and would take his hand of protection from Job that Job would change his tune and curse God.

So God decided to allow satan to try to “prove his point” but actually God was proving His!

Job STILL loved God , Job STILL worshipped God and even losing EVERYTHING under horrific circumstances, so horrific that everyone knew these were not natural occurrences and a sequence of events such as these could only be orchestrated by supernatural forces. 

And of course Job thought he had offended God and Job’s “friends”were there to make sure he KNEW that he had, (of course we know they were wrong) but there are always people there to kick you when you’re down and tell you that “you brought it on yourself” or that something is cosmic retaliation for some failure you had along the way.

 AGAIN, God does NOT work that way! When you serve God, love God, and do your best to honor Him in your life, I promise bad things ARE not coming from Him and sometimes when we get down, we need to be reminded of that.

So this massive attack waged on every possible scale and at every possible angle, with the only  restriction being that he could not harm Job’s body, Job 1:22 ends it this way: ” In ALL this Job sinned NOT, NOR charged God foolishly.”

Job stayed faithful to the Lord, he did not fall and he certainly did not question God or blame God, or accuse God of being wrong. Think satan was happy about that?

Sometimes the fight is only half over… Job 2:1-8: “AGAIN there was a day  the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them and presented himself before the Lord.

And the Lord said unto Satan, From whence camest thou? And Satan answered the Lord, and said from going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect (blameless) and upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth (shuns) evil?

And STILL he holdeth fast his integrity, ALTHOUGH thou movest (incited) me against him, to destroy him WITHOUT a cause.

And Satan answered the Lord, and said, Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life. But put forth thine hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse thee to thy face.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; BUT save his life.  So went Satan forth from the presence of the Lord, and SMOTE Job with sore boils FROM THE SOLE OF HIS FOOT UNTO HIS CROWN. And he took him a potsherd to scrape himself withal (with) and SAT DOWN AMONG THE ASHES.”

By this point Job wife even told him to just curse God and die, she was undoubtedly a mess herself with all that had happened and watching him suffer and maybe someone is telling you because of persecutions or attacks to give up on God that “it is not worth it” Don’t ever believe that!

Job was one of a kind and hopefully in comparison to the attack waged on him, your situation looks a little brighter.

But know IT IS WORTH IT and as Job WAS restored beyond measure because he stood the test that satan waged, you will be too. 

God protects us, God blesses us, and whatever valley we are allowed to walk through is going to lead to a beautiful mountain top.

And just like those ashes Job sat in, our ashes are turned, anything the enemy has destroyed, burned to ashes will be returned as pure beauty. IT WILL BE WORTH IT.

The enemy wants you destroyed either way and God wants good for you and He alone IS your protection, your shield, and hedge, so going back, turning our backs on God IS never an option.

As Peter replied to Jesus when asked was he too going to leave, and his answer was WHERE could he go? Because Jesus alone has the word of life.

Seek God, pray, and surround yourself with others who will also pray for you and walk with you through whatever you are going through but know you won’t go in all alone, we NEED each other and HOLD ON, HOLD ON, HOLD ON!

James 5:11: ” Behold, we count them happy (BLESSED) which ENDURE. ye have heard the PATIENCE (perseverance) OF JOB, and have seen the end of the Lord ( intended by the Lord) that THE LORD IS VERY PITIFUL (COMPASSIONATE) AND OF TENDER MERCY.” 

So carefully think about your situations and recognize traps for what they are and remember that the Lord IS love and He is compassionate and things that are hurting you DO NOT come from Him but He is faithful to deliver you from those things if you wait in patience for that deliverance. 

Take a lesson from Job and DON’T be quick to question and never blame God, more people fall because of lies of the enemy in these areas that any other trick he has. he pulls the old “If God loved you, WHY did this happen?” routine, ALL attacks ARE from the enemy and then some things just happen, simply just part of being alive in this world. THIS life, this world IS NEVER gonna be perfect, IT IS NOT MEANT TO BE.

The next life, the resurrected life, the New Jerusalem life IS the perfect life where there will BE no death, sorrow, or sickness.

But too often people let the enemy convince them that because a tragedy happened HERE  that means God does not care, or does not love them but that IS not true and we are NEVER told in the Bible that being saved makes us exempt from being HUMAN, in HUMAN BODIES, and SUFFERING COMPLETELY HUMAN CONDITIONS AND OCCURRENCES.

Some things are just unfortunately part of THIS life, but that is YOUR PATIENCE and YOUR HOPE.

This life is not all there is!

This life is only temporary and our hope is NOT in this life.

But God will bless you, protect you, and bring good things into our lives but that still does not exempt us from the natural.

Don’t throw that eternal assurance away because of the lies of a force that wants nothing more than to take you to hell anyway!

Outside of Jesus Christ there is no hope.

I hope this has encouraged you in someway and that you will find peace through the storm and that the storms soon comes to an end, but until then hold on because you have the blessed assurance that ALL storms do end!

Luke 21:19: “In your patience possess ye your souls.”  

Φλογιζω NBJ 2017

Original post date10/17/2017  REVISITED 10/20/2019, 10/14/2030

Rev. Nina Brown Johnson

The voice of Simon

“And one of the Pharisee desired (asked) him that he would eat with him. And he went into the Pharisees house, and set down to meat (dinner). And behold, a woman a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisees house, brought an alabaster box (jar) of ointment. And stood at his feet, behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with her tears, and did wipe them away with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment (oil).

Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake WITHIN himself, saying This man, IF he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman THIS IS that toucheth  him; For SHE IS A SINNER.

And JESUS answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee, and he said, Master (Teacher) say on. There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed him five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both, Tell me therefore, which will love him most?

Simon answered  and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most, and he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged. And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman hath not ceased to kiss my feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment.

Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven: for she loved much; but to whom little is forgiven, THE SAME LOVETH LITTLE.” LUKE 7:36-47

The courage it took for Mary to walk into that room, she knew exactly what they all thought and Pharisees, oh what we could say about Simon, what if Jesus had taken him to school and told him every single sin he had committed? But Jesus does not work that way, but Pharisees do.

He really nailed them when he referred to them as white washed tombs FULL of dead men’s bones, they will gag at a gnat and SWALLOW a camel. These are they who openly thank God that they are “not like that tax collector” over there.

These are they who claim they know Him and their smug religious superiority allows them to look down on and constantly backbite and trash talk others, because after all how could HE SAVE such sinners as they know people to have been or be?

They are “raging waves foaming out of their OWN SHAME” and whether you are a new Christian or have been on the frontlines for the Lord for a while, you have, or will, or are experiencing the voice of Simon.

Male or female, religious snobbery and arrogance knows no gender or social status and if they can’t see to their standards what the Lord has done in you, then obviously IN THEIR OPINION, it has not been done, AND THEY WANT TO MAKE BLOODY SURE THAT YOU KNOW THAT AND THAT YOU ARE NEVER UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT YOU WILL EVER OUT RUN YOUR PAST!

That is what Simon wanted and his voice must be silenced in all of our ears, because when you know Jesus, you KNOW His voice! “But he that entereth in by the door IS the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice; and he CALLETH HIS OWN SHEEP BY NAME, AND HE LEADETH THEM OUT.

And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him; for THEY KNOW HIS VOICE. And A STRANGER THEY WILL NOT FOLLOW, BUT WILL FLEE FROM HIM; FOR THEY KNOW NOT THE VOICE OF THE STRANGER.” JOHN 10:2-5

Jesus is giving us comfort that yes, others voices may call, other voices will try to persuade us to follow, but WE know HIS voice, His voice is Gentle, encouraging, and always, always leading us AWAY from our past. The voices of the strangers want to lead you back into a life of lies, and bondage, a life of misery, and hopelessness, just like Simon, he didn’t care if Mary was saved, as far as he cared she could split hell wide open, in HIS EYES he was pure as fallen snow and her.. well, not so much. 

Now with the courage it took her to seek Jesus WHERE he may be found, cry at His feet with an audience of haters staring her down, she had it rough, and if you want to be saved and this is what it is going to require, openly acknowledging and worshipping the Lord in an atmosphere of contempt, may I encourage you to do it!

Just as He shut Simon up, He will shut up those who discourage you. Sometimes the Pharisees will try to hunt us down in on our own turf, barge their way into your personal worship space with the Lord, as the devil is the “accuser of the brethren, (God’s children) and ACCUSES them night and day before the Lord”, it is so imperative to not let it get to you, go right on with the Lord and that puts the ball in HIS court and I guarantee you, when He gets through with them it will be as when the Egyptian’s were GLAD to see the Hebrews go because the plagues of God and His hand had been so strong against them.

We can not change any situation but God will, IF we stay out of it, and do not try to fix it ourselves or speak on our own behalf, if you notice with that, Mary never said a word, not one word, JESUS spoke on her behalf, HE IS our lawgiver, our judge, our refuge, and our strength and HE WILL DEFEND HIS CHOSEN.

And I know that can be hard when your being hassled and your flesh really wants to cut loose, go completely off, and all kinds of crazy on the “Simons”, but once we have made that mistake, we have extracted our own vengeance, when we should have chosen God’s because His vengeance is perfection.

We’ve covered them there, and here, but what about when you are desperately seeking God and trying to find your way? Most dangerous place of all and a hotbed of “Simons” the place that after salvation, we can get a little lax in “opening up” to Him and His will, and waiting too long to answer “His call” growing cold and lukewarm, realizing the mistake, dying to yourself, and start your “search”.

” I rose up to open to my beloved; and my hands dropped (dripped) with myrrh, and my fingers with sweet smelling myrrh, upon the handles of the lock. I opened up to my beloved; but he had withdrawn himself, and was gone; my soul failed when he spake (heart went out in longing); I sought for him; but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.

The watchmen that went about the city found me, and they smote (struck) me, and they WOUNDED me; the keepers of the walls TOOK AWAY my veil from me.” SONG OF SOLOMON 4:5-7

Now that is some damage, the kind of damages, “Simons” can cause, if you listen to them and do not stay close to God and KNOW who you are in Him, no matter how hard they try to convince you otherwise, even while taking “your veil”, like Simon tried, by arguing who you are or were. Little harder to bounce back from that, but it this story, she bounces back with a new determination to show the world His love.

So now we know what we don’t want to listen too, please let me give you a couple of sharp swords of the word to help in your battle:

#1. HIS VOICE, HIS VOICE, HIS VOICE! “FEAR NOT; for thou shalt NOT be ashamed: Neither be thou confounded (disgraced); for thou shalt NOT be put to shame: for thou shalt FORGET the shame of thy youth… ISAIAH 54:4

#2. “In righteousness thou shalt be ESTABLISHED; thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt NOT fear: and from terror; for it shalt NOT come near thee. Behold, THEY shall surely gather together (come against you) but NOT BY ME (God does NOT send them) WHOSOEVER SHALL GATHER AGAINST THEE SHALL FALL FOR THY SAKE. ISAIAH 54:14,15

#3. NO weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and EVERY tongue that SHALL RISE AGAINST THEE IN JUDGMENT (bad mouthing you) THOU SHALT CONDEMN. THIS IS THE HERITAGE OF THE SERVANTS OF THE LORD, AND THEIR RIGHTEOUSNESS IS OF ME.” ISAIAH 54:17 

Great comfort because Jesus casts all our sins and transgression into the “sea of forgetfulness” and NEVER remembers them again, and “as far as the east is to the west” those sins are from his mind and that is how far they should be from your mind also. I know days are just days, but with the new year we can consider it the perfect time to tell all the old “Simons” to be forgot and listen NO MORE to their voices.

But challenge ourselves in the new year to listen to the voice of our Shepherd, who will tell you that you ARE new, you ARE clean, and those filthy rags that were your righteousness have now been exchanged for the glorious garment of HIS righteousness which covers you completely in HIs love, His protection, and under the shadow of His mighty wings!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

If you have been hurt by words and people who just keep trying to remind you of your past, and keep trying to convince you that you have no future, PLEASE, PLEASE listen to this song, I STILL can not hear this song without crying because it has been so perfect for my heart and my walk and many, many trips with the “Simons” that have tried to make me doubt Jesus, but I KNOW Jesus, and I know from “miles and miles away LOVE saw (me)there and stretched out His hand to save (me) across the lonely ocean of (my) tears and he’ll walk upon the waves to save (me) if that’s what it takes” If you’ve been going through this, Please just listen to the voice of Jesus, because no one else died for you and no one else can save you and love you as He does! Simons looking for me can find me at the feet of the only one whose thoughts matter to me.

 

 

“EXPOSURE”

 ISAIAH 7: 14,15:  “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel (God with us). Butter and honey SHALL HE EAT, that HE MAY KNOW TO REFUSE EVIL AND CHOOSE THE GOOD.”                                                                                                                       

As we know these scriptures reference Jesus, whom was given good things and treated gently and kindly so HE WOULD KNOW and NOT choose the wrongs paths.

This is a very good argument against spanking and physically harming children and the more common emotional isolation and emotional abuse with words and shame.

Jesus was given good things so he would REFUSE the bad. I belong to the thought group that the major influence on a person is their environment and that if you can change that environment their life can be completely made new. That is not to say that environment can alter God’s will, it can’t, He is still God and still keeps His divine hand over many lives, EVEN when those lives are in absolute disarray.

But the environment of their circumstances can lead that to being a longer process, with many, many obstacles to be overcame. The enemy reverses all things of God and it becomes offering you the bad choices to make you feel compensated in that it presents itself as the only good out there for you.

As you notice this IS in reference to his childhood, we don’t need a Freud wanna be to enlighten us here, that this the time period where snares are set and where we are enslaved through psychological bondage. It is always accomplished in innocent, fragile minds and souls because the enemy wants to ensure it will last a life time.

You can see this so clearly in gangs and cults, and even often in certain types of prostitution and always, always in cycles of domestic abuse and the repeated problem of “picking the wrong guy”, you can’t PICK that many wrong guys! And it is also true for guys who chose women who belittle and mentally emasculate them, they often have domineering mothers and all in all the exposure produces a picture worth a thousand words, and those words speak volumes in lives.

It is the deceptive homing device planted long ago in vulnerable psyches that attracts the wounded to them and sends an unspoken code to predatory forces that you will be a perfect victim. Anyone really believe the “sixth sense” stalkers and serial killers possess (possessed is more like it) in tracking their victims is an all natural evil attribute that they just happen to have been born with? Research it, if you can’t see the demonic force at play there, you will never see it.

So what about the billions and trillions who WERE not given the good and did not know how to refuse the bad, when they seriously believe that “not as bad as…” is the only option given them? If life had been exposure to  evil after evil after evil?

That life will be like an overexposed photo, the light areas will be blurred and washed out, kinda like light IS there only not clear or well-defined.  What we have been exposed to does have impact on whom we become, the choices we make, and the way we live our lives BUT IT DOES NOT DETERMINE WHO WE ARE in Christ. 

That is the greatest news of the Gospel, there is NO life so dark, so tortured, or so messed up that it can not be redeemed by the one who gave it, but it is ALL in the exposure.

If you are underexposed to the good things, love, gentleness and a caring environment of respect, all the dark images will become darker. When someone has been exposed to violence, abuse and mental terrorism that exposure manifests itself in attempts to fit in and belong, feel love, feel whole and feel accepted and a need to be “normal” it explains how young people can be lured into joining gangs with them being beaten nearly to death as an initiation into that “family” and young women can be lured with attention and a false sense of security by men into a life of prostitution.

For many it will manifest as one big ride on a roller coaster of self-destruction, sick to death, desperately knowing you need to get off, but not ever figuring out how to make it stop.

Seeing it yet?  It all an attempt to feel LOVE, real love, love that will give itself FOR YOU not ask you to sacrifice yourself for it. Acceptance that you are accepted FOR you, not who someone else told you that you were or that you had to be. Belonging to a FAMILY, a family that protects YOU and cares for you and does not require your blood as proof of allegiance.

Jesus said “…and he that loseth his life FOR MY SAKE SHALL FIND IT you know what He is saying is this, LOSE your LIFE.

LOSE the thoughts that tell you are not worth love, your thoughts that nothing good will ever happen for you because you “don’t deserve” to be happy. These ARE NOT GOD’s thoughts toward you, they are programmed lies to keep you miserable and in bondage.

LOSE the friends and family that only weigh you down and constantly reaffirm all the negative views and hate filled words that have already been more than hammered into your soul.

LOSE the users and losers and those who only want you as the whipping boy to curse and run after when they are stoned or drunk.

LOSE everything that hurts, binds, disturbs, and hinders your growth, peace and happiness.

FIND a NEW LIFE that heals, delivers, brings peace and above all a love and an acceptance by one whose love can not even be described.

FIND a God that loves as a father, a REAL father, not the biological person that aided in conception, who was so vicious and vile that he was wished away.

FIND a God that will be closer than any friend, brother, or sister, that will be there through your tears and will never give you “told you so’s” or down you.

FIND a spiritual spouse whose love  is so strong that HE died FOR YOU not want you to risk your life. or kill, or  steal for him.

FIND a God in whose arms your weakness IS made strong, whose GENTLENESS will make you great.

Find a God whose peace, mercy and understanding are unsearchable, who WILL cast your sins, failures and mistakes as far as the east is to the west and wash your crimson sins white as snow and make YOU completely NEW again.

The best part with Jesus is that He loves us JUST FOR US! He does not care what we have done or where we are or how we got there, and He will heal every one of those wounds that lead you to those dark places, He just wants to help you and save you and help you get on with the life HE wants to give you. But as always I really wish He would just come down and take us over BUT He does not work that way, He will not force His will on you, But He IS always there, waiting for YOU to ask Him, as Jesus does stand at the door and knock at our hearts BUT the handle is on our side, He can’t come in if we will not let Him.

And maybe the enemy is bugging you out with well, what does she know, perched on her  religious high horse? Well, actually I am perched on my super groovy swivel stool and I am not religious, I am saved. I am saved from the hardest things to overcome, demonic exposures straight from hell, my own bloodline, and most of all myself. My readers have most of my story weaved throughout enough posts to piece together some things but I had a brother, he was my part-time babysitter when I would be alone with him but I lived in a home with him 24/7. He had issues, and was also quite gifted at drawing pentagrams ( if that gives you a little insight to exposures) I did not even know what they were until I got a lot older, so he had problems and he made sure I did too. Mental terrorism can be quite effective at producing wounds that last twenty-seven years and those wounds can lead a life of living in sin, working in sin and an overwhelming need to fit in, belong, and just be normal. But I harbor no ill will and God has truly taught me that people have problems because they have been exposed to things that have harmed their souls.

The “normal” part is always what gets us all we hide our pain and the shame (which should not be there) in constantly trying to prove  how normal we are. But with me I could never escape  the spiritual chase of it all and my life truly was just one trauma after another and making it past eighteen was a feat in itself, enough pressure, a failed marriage thanks to my refusal to convert to Catholicism and I ended up right where the devil had wanted all the time and it was the ONLY place I fit in.

The thing with wounds that have been untreated for so many years grow deeper and deeper but once we allow God to heal us they become scars, I could never show anyone my wounds and once God started leading me with my writing, I began to understand how important it is to not hide the scars because some times the wounded need to see the scars of those that have been healed. Without those scars I may not have what I have today and that is a relationship with the very one who created me. And EVERYONE has a story and we can always find others who have fared far worse and have made it out.

” And THEY overcame him (satan) BY the BLOOD OF THE LAMB, and BY the WORD of their testimony”….. forget what you have been exposed to, do not allow it to determine your today and your tomorrow. It does not define who you are, reach out and give Him your all and BE who HE created you to be.

If you “lose” life as you know it, what have you lost?  Pain, sorrow, pressure? What will you find? Peace, love, and joy, I may always have a hurdle or two but I also have a peace and a reassurance that I have a God who really does love me, in spite of me and no matter who rejects me, ridicules me or just outright despises me I am still His child and I have a peace in it all that He never fails, if I hold His hand He will not let me fall.

This song was on my heart to go with this and I feel it is for someone, if you have never heard it, please listen and please surrender, it is the most beautiful experience you will ever know.

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω Rev. Nina BrownJohnson 2016

 

“Gazingstock”

1 CORINTHIANS 4:9-13: “For I think that God hath set forth (displayed) us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death; for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to the angels, and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake ( the world opinion) but ye are wise in Christ; we ARE weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we ARE despised.

Even unto the present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked (poorly clothed), and ARE buffeted (beaten) and have no certain dwelling place; and labour, working with our own hands: BEING reviled, we bless; BEING persecuted, we suffer (endure) it. BEING defamed (slandered) we entreat (encourage): we ARE made the filth of this world, and ARE the offscouring of all things unto this day. ”

We often think of the Apostles as almost super human, almost as if, had they needed to, they could have run through stone buildings.

We are half right, considering that they, with the exception of Paul hung out with Jesus and SAW Him ascend into heaven and combined they were FREED by angels, SAW demons cast out and SAW the dead resurrected back to life.

BUT the super part belonged to the LORD the other is just human!
As we read the verse above, nothing about that sounds glamorous, or remotely desirable as a life style and these are the things we often forget.

I truly believe that this is what causes so many “new” Christians to slip and some seasoned ones to misplace their robes and end up wearing a coat made of jade 

For the most part it is preventable.

Once we accept Christ, and especially if we have been given the gift of the Holy Ghost, we have that wonderful newness.

Everything IS brand new, WE ARE New but then life, emotions, and the enemy come and often no one has ever told the “new” person that what they are going through is NORMAL for the course and no one helps them through that maze and they end up lost in it and give up even trying to find their way home.

The second group comes into play, as often having a fight with hell all the way to the altar and sometimes passed the altar and into the water because they have a call on their life.

And once they do make it “in” that fight only intensifies and I really, really wish I could give a “one word will make it all go away” answer right here.

BUT it does not exist.
Once this particular spiritual warfare has been engaged, it can not be disengaged because:
#1. The calling of God on lives is determined before birth and “they do not expire until we do.”
#2. Giving up is not an option, you will lose your salvation, and everything you have ALREADY fought through will have been for nothing.
#3. Outside of the will of God and without His protection, satan will chew you up and spit you out.
#4 Your fall will affect every single person you love and all those whom you were to minister to.
#5 THE most important reason is that JESUS died for you and saved you and He will NEVER let you be tested beyond what you can handle and a servant can not be above His Master, to reign with Christ we must suffer with Christ.
“Think It not strange…” sometimes battles are so fierce and dark that you can not even see daylight but you must remember you war against principalities and powers of the air.

I don’t know how I would have ever made it had God not blessed me with the people he did in my life and ministers that would share their own personal battle stories and some so hard to fathom, that my problems would pale in comparison.

Without the knowledge that these things happened to people whom I knew were Godly and doing their best in their walk, I could have never kept my head above water, I held onto every single word and would remember their stories and how they got through it and that they were still standing and that I serve the same God.

HEBREWS 10:32,33: “But call to remembrance the former days, in which after ye were illuminated (enlightened), ye ENDURED a GREAT FIGHT OF AFFLICTIONS (struggle with sufferings); partly, (in part) whilst ye were made a GAZINGSTOCK (SPECTACLE) BOTH BY REPROACHES AND AFFLICTIONS (tribulations) and partly (in part) whilst YE BECAME COMPANIONS OF THEM THAT WERE SO USED (treated).

What can we say there?

The days after your salvation, such a GREAT FIGHT with sufferings and troubles. You were as one that the world would look at and stare upon, as one in medieval stocks for the entire village to mock and ridicule.
Reproaches of those who laugh at your salvation and the enemy who questions “Where is your God now?”

But it is due in part so that YOU CAN become who you are to become in Christ.

1 PETER 1;4-8,10: “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 (along with) this, giving ALL DILIGENCE, ADD to your faith virtue, and to virtue knowledge: AND to knowledge temperance ( self-control); AND to temperance patience; AND to patience godliness; AND to godliness brotherly kindness; AND to brotherly kindness CHARITY ( love).
FOR if these thing be in you (are yours) and abound, they make you that YE SHALL NEITHER BE BARREN NOR UNFRUITFUL IN THE KNOWLEDGE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. Wherefore the rather brethren, GIVE DILIGENCE TO MAKE YOUR CALLING AND ELECTION SURE: FOR IF YOU DO THESE THINGS YE SHALL NEVER FAIL.”

So you have heard it from Paul and you have heard it from Peter, now they are some pretty reliable sources!!!

All these things WILL work to your good and all these things WILL produce every quality needed to be productive in the Kingdom of God.
If you are “new” please stay close and active in a good Bible believing church, read along with them, find ministers that you enjoy hearing and enjoy the word, don’t pressure yourself or let anyone else pressure you, the only opinion of you that should matter is God’s and He is awesome and will teach you all things.

Find a good prayer partner that you can trust, that can pray with you when life comes at you or temptation comes calling and if you fall of the boat, repent and get back on the boat!

And keep trying, IT WILL GET BETTER and IT WILL GET EASIER.
If you are in group two, seek the old paths and surround yourself with prayer warriors and try to spend time with older ones who have been there and done that and they WILL encourage you and give you godly advice that is imperative to stay on track in your calling.

And the best news is this, once you successfully war against an attack of the enemy, he will no more use that same weapon, because it is no longer effective.

Once you make it through a tough battle you will soon find that the battle made you stronger and you will be able to stand against attacks that would have put you out earlier in your ministry.

You will also be better at seeing attacks coming and be prepared more easily, not to say there will never be blind sides, but when it is said and done, you will be glad you stayed the course, because medals are not just given, they must be won.
Φλογιζω NB/2016

! Original post 02/2016.  Still battling blue screen, Please check out this blast from posts past!🐦

 

 

 

 

"GO FOR THE GOLD BUT PLEASE, HOLD THE JADE"

Ah, Jaded. What a lovely word, normally a beautiful stone used to adorn beautiful things. but in the right context, not quite so lovely on us.
We are to press toward the mark, to earn the crown of righteousness to one day lay at the Master’s feet, beautiful I am sure, pure gold just like His word and His truth that refines our souls purer than the purest of all gold.
But if that crown happens to be embellished with a little jade, what’s it going to hurt?
Well what was to be made of precious metal will now consist of hardened stone.
What should have shone with heavenly brilliance and reflected the Fathers light will now dull and now have an odd color and an indifferent feel.
That crown will be inferior and will tarnish and once that happens it will never be presentable before a King.
All that work, all that heartache, tears,and sacrifices, whatever had been involved in winning that crown will now be useless and disallowed and burned with the stubble in the fire in which all things must be burned away in that purification process of the soul.
So what causes us to go from that ecstatically exuberant joy that we are bathed in the day of our salvation to the “j” word over the course of that salvation?
I have pondered it, in myself and in others and I have come up with a couple of reasons.
In my circle our favorite subject is “Christendom of Yore” I know that they had problems, I know they had battles, and that females were to sit quietly and express no thoughts or opinions, to which I am thankful to be in the present day or otherwise my heart would explode!


Jaded: Deadened, injured, weary, tired, apathetic, blunted, blasé (indifferent or unimpressed) dispassionate, half hearted. Remember apathetic.
So how does our beautiful golden crowns become inlaid with flat, dulled jade?


#1 Fatigued, battle weary
We are in or nearing, in my belief, “the wearing out of the Saints” it seems no matter who they are, rich, poor, married or single that Christians are being constantly bombarded with a steady stream of attacks from the enemy unlike ever before.
Usually people would face one battle at a time but now it seems many fight multi battles on different levels and I am reminded of Nehemiah 4:17: “They which builded on the wall, and they which bare burdens, with those that laded, every one with one of his hands wrought in the work (working) AND WITH THE OTHER HAND HELD A WEAPON.”
Trying to “work” on our building for the Lord, and whatever he has called us to do being carefully on guard against attacks at all time, never a moment to rest, never a moment of ease by not having to look over our shoulders because this work must be done and many want it to cease.


#2 Blasé and unimpressed 
 “Heard it, believed it, didn’t happen, not buying it again”
I want to be very, very careful how I say this, but one huge problem running amok over the last few years is “Believe it, receive it, Doubt it and do without it” I am ALL for faith, and I know what scripture teaches on believing for what we do not see, but miracles and healings are in a special, special league all their own.
Miracles are instantaneous and the moment that you are healed you know and there has been such a free for all of proclaiming healings over people and “feeling” like the “Lord is saying” that some teach that all you have to do is proclaim it and “believe” (which is actually different from faith, belief is in your heart and faith is knowing come what may He is God and He is sovereign) and when people are hurting, love ones are dying and they are told this and someone actually proclaims that they are healed then they die and the bewildered family are told they just did not have the faith or that they received the ultimate healing.
And no one admits to maybe having misspoke or trying to pray “in faith”, often people want to reach out to others but in this area it is best to pray the Lord’s prayer, “deliver them”.
( I do understand that Paul perceived that the man had faith to be healed BUT Paul was filled with the HOLY GHOST, he KNEW when the anointing came that GOD would grant his request FOR THE GLORY TO THE LORD, not so he could win preacher of the year!) 
BUT NO,NO,NO, NO! When they have believed based one what they were told by Christians that they trusted and if it DOES NOT happen, this leads to apathy and causing them to lose more faith than what would have been lost if they had known the truth, this has caused many to leave church completely.
But IF GOD truly says it, it will come to pass.
#3 Apathetic and Blunted:
“They don’t care, why should I?”
The beginning of the journey all fired up, feeding off on another’s anointing, iron sharpening iron, the spirit bearing witness.
Now that is good, but when things start to change and the one you once loved to listen starts coming against you for whatever reason, what was once a beautiful flow will become a dangerous hindrance in the spirit world.
Two swordsmen fighting each other with equally dangerous weapons and that unspoken carnage will spill over onto the entire congregation.
And the swordsmen are prime to have the Lord to take both their swords. 
And that once sharp iron will become dull and blunt rendering it absolutely ineffective against the enemy.
That apathetic “blah, blah, blah” attitude will breed into so much more than a covering of jade.
When this hit me, I knew the meaning of jaded, I wanted a clearer list and broader understanding and as I kept defining meanings, two fascinating words appeared,
stemming FROM the jaded definition of apathetic, LUKEWARM and LAODICEAN.
Yeah, and we all know what that means, so all these things left unchecked will lead to being lukewarm and we also know that is the condition in which Jesus said he will spue us out.
So how do we clean that jade off before it takes hold of the gold?
Renewing, renewing and renewing  our minds, “let this mind which is in Christ Jesus be in you also” renewing our minds through scripture back into the word of God. Reminding ourselves repeatedly of every single promise that we have been given.
As Nehemiah prayed that God would “strengthen the work” of his hands so must we.
He will never allow us to break, when we are weary, it is His right hand that holds us up, when our heads are bowed in discouragement it is His left hand that lifts our face.
When we desperately, desperately need a word to hang onto or a glimmer of hope, remember “What time that I am afraid I will trust in thee” and that He will be with us “even unto the end of the world” and sometimes that can be when we feel that our world is ending, but He will never leave us.
Remember our first love and “remember thy love more than wine” and know that even though we don’t always feel it, the only approval we need is His.
 No one can zap us into heaven and no one can deny us heaven if we don’t let them, no matter who has hurt us it is still up to us to “work out” our “own salvation” if that means finding another church, then do it because God is not the author of confusion.
Forgive those that have hurt you, just let it go and go on and don’t even try to understand it, God doesn’t want us to waste time over analyzing and ever analyzing what went wrong yesterday, because He already knows what tomorrow will bring.
I have found in my own life that every painful path that I have had to walk down led me to a more beautiful place and at the end of that road I may not have liked the circumstances that lead me there but I have always been thankful for the journey because of the  blessings in that valley that He has given me and I know that I would never received that on a mountain top.
Sharpen that sword and  get that crown polished because no matter how tired, how weary, lethargic or depressed you may feel, you’ve been furnace fired to be pure gold and that jade is just never gonna look good on you!
Φλογίζω / NBJ/ All rights reserved 2015







ASHES

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Ashes, sometimes all that is all that is left of what once was your life all that was held precious and dear, all that is left of what once was and most importantly what will be never again. Maybe you feel that way today, maybe you have wounds that are so deep, wounds that are […]