The Immeasurable Magnitude of Mercy…

“Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.”  Luke 6:36 Mercy, the greatest gift one can show another and none could ever come close to the kind of mercy Jesus shows and has shown and no mercy will ever compare to the mercy shown us when He took our place on the cross and took all the punishment, pain, and torture for the wrong of all mankind.

The age-old term of “mercy me” literally meaning “have mercy on me” and the dictionary meanings are many a splendid thing :), words such as “benevolence”, “compassion”, “kindness”, “forgiveness”, and the mac daddy of them all is “forbearance” Which means to tolerate beyond any reasonable expectation the behavior of another, and can be equated also to what Jesus spoke of when He said, “And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.” 

Which means in Old English means two, but for the record Jesus didn’t speak Old English, of course being God He certainly can speak any language He wants, but I point that out also in this mercy post, because they are some who get really upset if you leave out a “thee” or “thou” when trying to relay messages from the word.

Dealing with that teaches the double edge of mercy. Being merciful in not brow beating another for an innocent infraction and flip it over and forbear when we are browbeaten for that misquote. 

We seem to be running a little crazy in society right now, we have mercy only in the areas that mean something to us.

I am so thankful that so many have joined the causes of animal rights and believe wholeheartedly in that and believe that God’s word is very clear on HIS thoughts on it, if you’d like you can read more about that in OF A DUDE, A DONKEY, AND A VERY ANGRY ANGEL so I certainly do not want to dismiss mercy shown by ANYONE to ANYTHING because the world needs help in ALL areas.

But I do not understand how people can feel that strongly and protective of the others of God’s creation and how they can literally fight for the environment, I firmly believe in and support that also, I have never written on it but think about these words from Revelation 11:18, it deals with the wrath of God and the ends goes like this “…and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.”

It was all gift ed to us from God and we have destroyed it and ourselves through wickedness.

But I fail to understand how one can love the trees, the wilderness, flowers, and butterflies and yet have no problem whatsoever with the slaughter of millions of babies, our OWN species, a year.

And I can’t understand how anyone in the name of science can say they want to cure diseases and save lives and find cures and yet can be so evil and unmerciful to torture animals in researching those cures and even worse the cosmetic industry, like, “Oh, I love your long lashes, wonder how many animals were blinded in the process of coming up with that lengthening formula?

Certainly can’t understand the concept, which can be pretty predominant in certain crowds, of  “don’t kill those babies, but string that murderer up”  folks, we can’t have both.

And I will show you why in just a bit.   

As a society these lines are becoming more and more blurred and the fight for  perceived mercy and acceptance toward some is causing absolute mercilessness and hatred spewed at others that have different thoughts on the subject at hand.

What is this leading up to? Well, often the thought is the ends justify the means and people can become absolutely obsessed with their “cause” so much so, that cause becomes more of a militant mission and what can start off as a heart in the right place can turn very dark when met with anger and intolerance from the opposition, Regardless of what those disagreements pertain to.

Because right and wrong can only be truly measured by the Word Of God and His standards of behavior and justice, everything else is OUR human opinions and PERSONAL standards. 

Often the wrong teachings of Him as hostile, and wanting to torch everyone has left many wide open to the tricks and snares of the devil and they run AWAY from God because they have seen things from those who profess Christ, that are in NO WAY true representations of Jesus Christ, as my favorite saying goes, “All that glitters is not gold” and just because someone says that are a “Christian” does in no way mean that they are following Christ.

Jesus told us that we would know them by “their fruit” a good tree can not bear bad fruit nor a bad one good, so we KNOW by their actions, which truly speak louder that words, where they really stand with God.

The devil can quote Bible scripture, he tried to use them against Jesus when Jesus was in the wilderness for forty days, he knows more about the word, probably than many of us, because he has been around since creation.

And the Bible gives us warning after warning about “false preachers'” and “false teachers” and those who are “wolves in sheep clothing” the devil himself, we are told, “can transform into an angel of light” and that “IF it were possible”, the very elect, God’s CHOSEN “would EVEN be deceived” but God will not allow that.

So when people fall to the wrong beliefs and TURN on God this is what FILLS that place in their heart and soul that should be filled by Him.

Romans 1:22, 28-32: “Professing THEMSELVES to be wise, they became fools.

And even as they did NOT like to retain God in their knowledge, God GAVE them over to a reprobate MIND, to do those things which are NOT convenient (fitting);  

BEING FILLED WITH ALL UNRIGHTEOUSNESS, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; FULL of envy, murder, debate (strife), deceit, malignity (evil-mindedness),whisperers,

Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful (violent), proud, boastful, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents. 

WITHOUT UNDERSTANDING, covenantbreakers, WITHOUT natural affection, implacable (unforgiving), UNMERCIFUL;

Who KNOWING the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.”

Sound familiar? If not, try turning on the television sometimes and check out the news and you will see plenty of it.

Mercy is OUR choice and once we lose sight of just what mercy entails will are in for a world of hurt. 

Mercy and truth co-exist and you can not truly have one without the other.

Psalm 85:9-13: “Surely his salvation is nigh them that fear him; that glory may dwell in our land. 

Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven. 

Yea, the Lord shall give that which is good; and our land shall yield her increase.

Righteousness shall go before him; and shall set US in the way of his steps.” 

Hopefully you can see by the bold and underlined where this is going,  once mercy comes into play it brings forth truth because in order to show mercy we must look at our own actions and based on the GOLDEN RULE X2 we realize many truths.

Especially the endless mercies that God has shown us in our lifetimes. Mercy and truth help produce righteousness (right-standing with God) and peace, that peace that also allows for that forbearing mercy.

Then we can be blessed of God and he will direct our paths in Him.

So whether it is resisting the temptation to spread some juicy gossip, or the need to take ten and calm down that last nerve someone is getting on, or being proactive in choices that represent your conviction of mercy, or even as a far greater act of mercy, when it is in your power, one form or another to destroy another person, be it their reputation, their job security, or whatever it may be and you choose NOT to, because THAT is the kind of mercy Jesus has shown us,.

He could have destroyed this entire universe and simply spoke another into existence. He could have left us all to die in our sins, He could have chosen NOT to cast those forgiven sins “into the sea of forgetfulness” and He could have reminded us every single day of what we had done wrong.

But He doesn’t, and our sins, once forgiven are “as far as the east is to the west”.

And mercy is what He expects us to show if we EXPECT mercy from Him.

He is just and absolutely fair in His judgments toward us and we truly are returned what we are willing to give another, with no room for self-righteous condemnations of others.

Just as the story of the Pharisee  and the tax collector  Luke 18:10-14, the Pharisee was all up on himself TELLING God how fabulous he had been and how much better he was than “THAT tax collector” and tax collector confessed his sins and ASKED for mercy and Jesus commended Him in His Word, that he was the one that actually was right with God that day. 

What counts with God is the things that NO ONE sees, that is just as important, being diligent when no one else even knows, because someone DOES KNOW and that someone is God. So go that extra mile even when you don’t feel like it, look over thoughts and actions that you may not necessarily agree with when there is nothing to be harmed by looking over that.

Be merciful at every opportunity, to give love, kindness, and show mercy, even in the little things, don’t get mad at the dog,don’t squish that bug just because it is there, don’t throw out the cat, don’t punish your child out of simple anger, the things we put so much stock in is not even going to matter in the end.

All that is going to matter is the choices you have made, not that society made for you, but you made for yourself.

I told you I’d show you why, Psalm 18:24-26: “Therefore the Lord hath recompensed me  according to my righteousness, according to the cleanness of my hands in his eyesight. 

With the merciful thou wilt shew thyself merciful; with an upright man thou wilt shew thyself upright:

With the pure thou wilt shew thyself pure; with the froward (devious) thou wilt shew thyself froward (shrewd).” 

He WILL mirror back to use our own image in these things and sometimes that is not very pretty, we NEED all the mercy we can get.

James 2:12,13:” So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty. 

For he shall have JUDGEMENT WITHOUT MERCY, THAT HATH SHEWED NO MERCY; AND MERCY REJOICETH AGAINST JUDGEMENT..” Which means mercy is gentle, kind, and forgiving and does NOT seek retaliation or to harm simply because it is socially acceptable to do so.

Such as, in my state, it was perfectly legal  for a man to beat his spouse until the nineteen eighties, but do you think this made it okay?

Do you think that God is going to look over that if they do not repent?

No, He is not, just because we “can” do something does NOT make it right.

But how many guys do you think probably took full advantage of that “right” to abuse spouses, run roughshod over families, destroy lives, and be cock of the roost.

My point. and will end it right here:

Hosea 6:6: “ For I DESIRED mercy (faithfulness) , and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.

Thanks for reading! Thanks for your patience with me and thank you to my followers, I appreciate every single person who takes time out of their life to read this blog. God bless you till next time! Love & Peace! Φλογιζω NBJ 2019

“Taking up serpents…”

First off, I must admit that I have about three posts I need to write to explain my six-week hiatus and my name change ‘Splaining the name thing…. But I really have to do this today because I think it may be “on time” for some and I definitely don’t want to wait until it is too late to give maybe a little different prospective on a probably quite taboo and deadly subject ( in more ways than one) but nevertheless  a very real subject  inside some denominations of the Christian faith.

“Snake handling” or “taking up serpents” mainly associated with Pentecostal and Holiness churches, but I do want to STRESS the majority of churches in these groups do NOT practice this.

I have glimpsed television shows dealing with this and I stay far away from those shows and now there is a new video on social media that was filmed during just such a service in a neighboring state.

It worries me, it worries me for several reasons.

The clip I watched showed multiple people filming this so it is really hard to know just how broad an audience it will hit. I truly do not understand the need to film this because the subject is so hard for many to understand and I personally believe it would be far more beneficial filming and sharing a service of healing and miracles.

And seriously if one has the kind of faith to lift up a Copperhead or rattlesnake and not be bitten and die, they should have the kind of faith to believe the lame will walk, the deaf will hear, because the miraculous and the signs and wonders are for those who DO NOT BELIEVE, so that they will see and know that no power other than the power of a sovereign God could have brought forth these truly supernatural occurrences.

I fear most the door which is opened for those who do not understand to mock and ridicule and unknowingly endanger their souls in doing so, usually others will be dancing in the Spirit, or speaking in tongues and contrary to denominational arguments as to whether these manifestation are still active in our present day, the real danger lies in the fact that if those who have never read the book of Acts or know anything at all of the Bible or Jesus, and are not even laughing about the snakes, decides to mock the dancing, or some other aspect of a service, it endangers their souls, through something that they should have never viewed unless the were present.

Because we can be forgiven for ANYTHING EXCEPT mocking the Holy Spirit.

When we do not understand we have no way to gauge exactly what we are seeing other than our OWN human mind and for those who do not know Christ, this can be even more dangerous.

I for one believe in the sanctity of ALL life, and do not believe in hitting or killing and I know Jesus to be a beautiful GENTLE creator and I really feel sorry for the snakes which have to be terrified but I also know better than to bash their beliefs because they are worshiping God they way they understand it to be and they do this as an exercise in faith.

Just as a boxer might push themselves to new limits everyday while preparing for an upcoming match.

This is how they build their faith that God will protect them.

So for those who may not know, we’ll look at the verses and origins of this and I’ll give you my take on my personal thoughts,again those are mine, EVERYONE has their own relationship with the Lord, and that IS what we MUST be mindful of. Okay, where does this practice come from?

Have to get back to the garden for that one, most know the story of Adam, Eve, and the serpent that seduced her through her own desires for supposed “knowledge” right into absolute disobedience to God. And as God gave divine judgments against ALL three of them.

Genesis 3:14,15: “And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because THOU hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beats of the field; upon thy belly thou shalt go, and dust shall be thou eat all the days of thy life.

And I WILL PUT ENMITY (hostility) BETWEEN THEE AND THE WOMAN, AND BETWEEN THY SEED AND HER SEED; AND IT (he) SHALL BRUISE THY HEAD, AND THOU SHALT BRUISE HIS HEEL.”  

So the long-held hatred between humans and snakes can be easily explained and symbolically many older demonstrations hold this to a more drastic level than many of us do today, because as we understand it, all females suffer terribly during childbirth and I personally believe the serpent had legs at this time, but nevertheless we know snakes now can only move on their bellies, and are absolutely the most dreaded and hated among all creation.

This gives us the reason behind the symbolism of power to subdue them. Many other scriptures deal with the subject, but we’ll try to stick with the subject at hand.

So further proof of this, can be found in the fact that power over the serpent was one of the signs God gave Moses to show that his commission was truly divine.

 Exodus 4:1-5: “And Moses answered and said, But behold, they will NOT believe me, NOR hearken unto my voice: for they will say, The Lord hath NOT appeared unto thee.

And the Lord said unto him, What is in thine hand? And he said, A rod. And he (the Lord) said, Cast (throw) it down on the ground, and he cast it down it on the ground, AND IT BECAME A SERPENT: and Moses fled from before it. 

And the Lord said unto Moses, Put forth thine hand, and take it by the tail ( reach down and pick it up by the tail) And he put forth his hand, and caught it, and IT BECAME A ROD IN HIS HAND:

THAT THEY MAY BELIEVE THAT THE LORD GOD OF OUR FATHERS, THE GOD OF ABRAHAM, THE GOD OF ISAAC, AND THE GOD OF JACOB, HATH APPEARED UNTO THEE..” 

Exodus chapter seven also tells us of this same rod being turned again to the serpent which consumed the serpents of Pharaoh’s magicians. God sent mighty wonders through Moses that the Egyptians AND the Hebrews would know, see, and BELIEVE in the power of Jehovah God.

Again, Numbers chapter twenty-one tells us of people speaking AGAINST God and His servant, prompting God’s anger which he displayed by sending fiery serpents upon the people, when the people repented and came to Moses, God instructed to make a brass serpent and those bitten who be healed when the gazed upon it. 

We understand that to be the forerunner verse to John 3:14,15:“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.”

Now to bring it New Testament, when Jesus gave the great commission, he spoke also of the signs and wonders, those unexplained events that could only be explained by a very real belief in the power and glory of Almighty God.

Mark 16:15-18: “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be damned (condemned).

And THESE SIGNS shall follow them that believe; IN MY NAME shall thy cast out devils (demons) ; they shall speak with new tongues;

THEY SHALL TAKE UP SERPENTS: AND IF THEY DRINK ANY DEADLY THING, IT SHALL NOT HURT THEM; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” 

I personally believe in miracles, I have seen miracles and there have been times I could not understand why something didn’t end with a miracle and then I remembered something, miracles ARE for a sign and only God dictates when that is required, as believers we are already told to “walk by faith” and that is His requirement.

The miracles, He sends as He wishes, not necessarily as we desire. although I believe in asking and asking!

So this is how I interrupt this, not saying I am right, not saying you have to agree, but saying PLEASE do not encourage others in something they do not understand because Paul also told us that we are babes we must have milk, not solid food.

Of course I paraphrased that, but it translates to this, we grow little by little in the things of God and trying to chew meat when we haven’t teeth will only choke us to death.  so taking up serpents, we are told we will tread upon them, in the sense of the demonic forces we deal with that are constantly  striking at our heels in hopes of making us stumble. Jesus gave us power through His name over those.

Now what if the enemy tries to kill you BEFORE your time and others are just knowing that you have done something to “deserve” it?

Acts 28:3-6: “And when Paul had gathered  a bundle of sticks, and laid them on the fire, THERE CAME A VIPER OUT OF THE HEAT, AND FASTENED ON (sunk in his fangs and held onto) HIS HAND. 

And when the barbarians SAW the VENOMOUS BEAST HANG ONTO HIS HAND, they said among themselves, No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he escaped the sea, yet vengeance suffereth him not to live. 

And HE SHOOK OFF THE BEAST (creature) INTO THE FIRE, AND FELT NO HARM.

Howbeit, thy looked (expected) WHEN HE SHOULD HAVE BEEN SWOLLEN, OR FALLEN DEAD SUDDENLY: but  AFTER THEY HAD LOOKED A GREAT WHILE, AND SAW NO HARM COME TO HIM, THEY CHANGED THEIR MINDS…..”  

Deadly “poison” by accident, or by the devils assault, or by simple basic necessity:

Exodus 15:23-25: ” And when they came to Marah, they COULD NOT DRINK of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter: therefore the name of it was called Marah.

And the people murmured against Moses, saying, WHAT SHALL WE DRINK? And he cried unto the Lord; and the Lord shewed (showed) him a tree, which he was to cast into the waters, AND THE WATERS WERE MADE SWEET…”   

2 Kings 2:19-22: “And the men of the city said unto Elisha, Behold, I pray thee, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord seeth ( it is a nice place as you see) but THE WATER IS NAUGHT (bad), and the ground is barren.

And he said, Bring me a new cruse, and put salt therein. And they brought it to him.

And he went forth unto the spring of the waters, and cast the salt therein, and said, THUS SAITH THE LORD, I HAVE HEALED THESE WATERS; THERE SHALL NOT BE FROM THENCE ANY MORE DEATH OR BARREN LAND.

SO THE WATERS WERE HEALED UNTO THIS DAY, according to the saying of Elisha which he spake.”

2 Kings 4:38-41: “And Elisha came again to Gilgal: and there was a dearth (famine) in the land; and the sons of the prophets were sitting before him: and he said unto his servant, set on a great pot, and seethe pottage (soup) for the sons of the prophets.

And one went out into the field to gather herbs, and found a wild vine, and gathered wild gourds, his lap full, ( as many as he could carry), and came and shred them INTO the pot of pottage: for they knew them not. So they poured out for the men to eat.

And it came to pass, AS THEY WERE EATING OF THE POTTAGE, THAT THEY CRIED OUT, AND SAID, O THOU MAN OF GOD, THERE IS DEATH IN THIS POT. And they could NOT eat thereof. 

But he (Elisha) said, THEN BRING MEAL. And he cats it into the pot: and he said, Pour out for the people, that they may eat. AND THERE WAS NO HARM (nothing harmful) IN THE POT.”

I hope this may have helped understand these traditions and the importance of whether we ourselves embrace them or not, we should be truly careful of what we say about them.

Thanks for reading!

Love & Peace, GOOD TO BE BACK!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NB 2018

 

Love Is……

“Though I speak with the tongues of men and angels, and have not charity (love), I am become as a sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

And though I have the GIFT of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have ALL faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity (love), I am nothing.

And though I bestow ALL my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity (love), it profiteth me NOTHING.” 1 Corinthians 13:1-3

Love, love, sweet glorious love! We say it, we think it but just how often are we really showing it?

Think of it though He SPOKE with the heavenly languages, given through the gift of tongues, so that all could hear the word of God for themselves and though He even SPOKE the language of the heavenly host, the language of the angels, as marvelous and wonder striking as that, still without love, his voice would be nothing other than the sound of a common instrument.

Though he had the very gift of God MANIFESTED in his life, through prophecies could understand and relate even the darkest of parables, though he had faith to even pray the most insurmountable mountain down to the ground and call it dust, without love it is nothing.

And giving all he had and even his life, if it was without love, it would hold no value eternally and there would be no reward for any of those acts.

He was giving us a very valuable lesson here, we CAN be saved, we CAN be working in the kingdom, we CAN have the manifestation of the gift of the Spirit, and yet we can be so one minded, so religious, and so hard-hearted that it will not be effective and none of it will last eternally.

Doesn’t mean a person is not saved, just means they are not producing the most precious of fruit and without producing love, nothing else is going to grow. 

Love IS….  “Charity (love) suffereth long, and IS kind; charity (love) envieth not; charity (love) vaunteth not itself (does not brag on itself), it not puffed up (arrogant),

Doth not behave itself unseemly (rudely), seeketh not her own (is not self-seeking), is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;

Beareth all things, believeth all things, edureth all things. Charity (love) NEVER fails….” 1 Corinthians 13:4-8(1) 

So LOVE IS… forbearing, willing to tolerate a lot before blowing its top. LOVE IS kind, gentle, merciful, looking over things and looking through others to see the best and see the causes before passing judgment, giving of itself rather than to be given to, thinking of others before itself. 

 

LOVE IS not boastful, or proud,  it never reminds you of what all it has done for you, never thinks you owe it anything, never expects anything in return, love is never arrogant in thinking that it is number one, but always allowing the favored position to other, love gives a hand up not a knock down.

LOVE IS never rude, cocky, or bossy, or better than anyone or anything, never self-seeking and self-fulfilling, never self-willed.

LOVE IS not easily angered, chooses to see the good, even when it is aware of the bad.

LOVE IS never pleased with lies, and hypocrisy but is overjoyed with the truth.

Love walks along the paths of this life with us, walks through all the sorrow, all the sadness, and all the grief with us, and when we become to weary to walk, love will carry us to the end of that journey.

Love holds on,  ever clinging to the side of a mountain as everything around it starts to quake and tumble down, never giving up and never letting go. Love never fades, never dies, never gives itself credit, it always protects, always perseveres and NEVER, EVER FAILS. 

We gotta put this baby in reverse, to fully understand just why we need to know what love really is: 1 John 4:19: “ We love him because HE FIRST LOVED US.” 

We are not even capable of love in our own selves, we only love at all because HE LOVED US FIRST, and even then we are still not capable of the level of love that He has.

“Beloved, let us love another: for LOVE IS of God; and everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth NOT knoweth NOT God; for GOD IS LOVE.

In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.

Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be propitiation for our sins. Beloved, IF GOD SO LOVED US WE OUGHT ALSO LOVE ONE ANOTHER.” 1 John 4:7-11 

So is it love? Is it real, real love? Titus 3:1-4 “Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers (authority), to obey magistrates (obey laws of the land) to be ready to every good work, to speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers (not contentious) but gentle, shewing meekness unto all men.

For WE OURSELVES WERE ALSO SOMETIMES foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures (running wild doing whatever they pleased), living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. BUT AFTER THAT THE KINDNESS AND LOVE OF GOD OUR SAVIOUR TOWARD MAN APPEARED.”

There you have it, Paul stating what we all have been but AFTER all that the love and kindness of Jesus showed us all EXACTLY what LOVE IS!

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω  NBJ 2016

“Playin’ favorites”

And as for you, O my flock, thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I judge between cattle and cattle, between the rams and the he (male) goats.

Seemeth it a small thing unto you (you seem to think it is a trivial thing) TO HAVE EATEN UP THE GOOD PASTURE, but ye must TREAD DOWN (trample) WITH YOUR FEET the residue (remainder) OF YOUR PASTURES? and to have DRUNK OF THE DEEP WATERS, but ye must FOUL THE RESIDUE WITH YOUR FEET?            EZEKIEL 34:17,18

What He is saying is this, He will decide and do justice between “sheep”, His people.

It seems that to these that it is no concern of theirs and nothing to them, if the other sheep have no food, because they greedily gobble it all up and then crush and trample the little that remains.

They have no care or concern as they guzzle down all the available water, as they stand in it with their  dirty feet with no regard that others who are dying of thirst will only have this to drink. 

And they ARE the favorites of the shepherds of those fields, so no one dares to question. Playing favorites, man, I could actually write a book, maybe two just on the subject alone. But I don’t need to write anything since it has already been written and wonderfully fit for a time such as this.

The favorites of the shepherds, the chosen few, the “pets”, the family, the friends, the social status cliques, the biggest tithe givers, and I am sure some that fall into the category of, “Oh, I just like you, you remind me of a younger me” and of course they do like ones that are like-minded and share agendas.  

This is the separation: EZEKIEL 34:19-22: “And as for MY FLOCK, they EAT THAT WHICH YE HAVE TRODDEN WITH YOUR FEET; and THEY DRINK THAT WHICH YE HAVE FOULED WITH YOUR FEET.

Therefore thus saith the Lord God unto them; Behold, I, even I, WILL JUDGE BETWEEN THE FAT (FED)  SHEEP AND THE LEAN (STARVING) SHEEP.

Because YE HAVE THRUST (pushed)  WITH SIDE AND WITH SHOULDER, and PUSHED (BUTTED) ALL THE DISEASED (WEAK) WITH YOUR HORNS, TILL YE HAVE SCATTERED THEM ABROAD.

Therefore WILL I SAVE MY FLOCK, and they will be no more a prey; and I WILL JUDGE BETWEEN CATTLE (SHEEP) AND CATTLE (SHEEP).” 

Notice the pushing and shoving, those who, when they see one stumble, rather than help them up they will merely use the fallen back as a bridge to snatch a morsel out of the mouth of a another. The ones who shamelessly take credit for the work of others. The ones who mistakenly believe that they are of a greater importance to the flock and to the kingdom. They push and they shove the weak, notice the horns, adding to the wounds of those who are  injured, and hurt. They never feel one ounce of regret or remorse because getting all they can grab is what they are all about.

I love how  the Lord had these passages go hand in hand in the book of Ezekiel, He first speaks to the Shepherds, who are in for a world of hurt and then He goes on to the “fat cattle, the difference that are made by the shepherds who have their own agendas which are “ME, MYSELF, AND I” and if you can’t expand my pasture   ( help bring sheep and FURTHER THEIR ministry) well, just go on down the road, someone will take you in.

It is so funny, I have heard a thousand times by many different mouths, words such as “So and so will be here, come on out and make him welcome” “I‘ll be at ….. come bring friends” “ I am starting a new teaching series, come on out ” and of course the “great new” books that you just can’t live without, of course you have to pay for it but they really want to get this “must have” into your hands and teach you secrets of the kingdom! So funny, there is ONLY ONE book that you must have and that is the Bible and they want you to have it so bad, and you “need” it so bad, but they sure aren’t going to give it away now are they????? But you NEVER hear “Come check out my sheep” “Look at this fine flock” never, never because IT IS NO LONGER ABOUT THE FLOCK.

Another fine example of what He is getting at:

JAMES 2: 1-10 ” My brethren, have ye not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, (do you not profess to be of Christ) with respect (partiality) of persons?

For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel (expensive clothing), AND there came in ALSO a poor man in vile raiment (filthy clothes); and YE HAVE RESPECT (PAY SPECIAL ATTENTION) TO HIM IN GAY (FINE) CLOTHING, and say unto him, SIT THOU HERE IN GOOD PLACE, and SAY TO THE POOR, STAND THOU THERE, OR SIT HERE UNDER (AT) MY FOOTSTOOL.

Are ye NOT then partial in YOURSELVES, (Have you not DISCRIMINATED) and are become judges of evil thoughts?

Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath God not chosen the POOR of this world rich in faith, and HEIRS OF THE KINGDOM which he hath promised to them that love him?

But YE HAVE DESPISED (dishourned) the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw (drag) you before the judgement seats? Do not they blaspheme the worthy (noble) name by which ye are called? If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, THOU SHALT LOVE THY NEIGHBOR AS THYSELF, ye do well.

But IF YE HAVE RESPECT (PARTIALITY) TO PERSONS, YE COMMIT SIN, AND ARE CONVINCED (CONVICTED) OF THE LAW AS TRANSGRESSORS. For whosoever shall keep the law, and yet offend (stumble) in one point, he is guilty of all.”

I often wonder what it would be like now if Jesus or the disciples were to walk into a modern church. Would it be like it was when he came to earth?

You know when the Jews and Pharisees just didn’t think He fit the bill for being the Son of God, He didn’t look like royalty, He sure didn’t act the part, He refused to share their religious snobbery and woman hating misogyny.

And Oh, my goodness…. Can you believe that HE ACTUALLY LET MARY TOUCH HIM?????? He actually healed the sick without giving them a speech about how they should have taken better care of themselves. He actually cast out the demons that troubled them (without asking a fee) he raised their dead not to make Him a mega minister but actually OUT OF COMPASSION for their pain. He dined with “sinners” hung out with fishermen. He even let His disciples eat with unwashed hands. And all those that pointed fingers at Him questioning His authority to do these things were met with the finger of God pointing back at their own wicked hearts, sure, cast the first stone, oppress the widows, sell the orphans, slaughter his lame sheep. 

I really don’t think they would recognize Him here, do you???? Wonder if they have ever pondered the fact that the least of these will be the greatest in heaven? That does not mean high and lofty, that means Jesus came to serve not to be served and this is what He expects from His followers. So if they do not want to do it on this earth and they want a “higher” position then they can expect to have a reversal of that position in the kingdom of heaven.

And THAT is gonna be a lot of fun! I am quite excited about it, as my own struggles dealing with shepherds and pushy- shovy sheep, in the forms of Alpha Male Ministers and Cattle Prodding Pastors, Church House Divas and my favorites the “Is she wearing PANTS” crowd. I have to ALWAYS keep the tongue in check and know that HE IS MY SHEPHERD and know that no matter how scruffy, malnourished, or thirsty I may get and contrary to who likes me or who doesn’t that HE will always feed me, water me, and love me because I am HIS, and I know if I don’t learn to just deal with them, look over them, and see it for what it is, that hate will grow and I will lose my relationship with the Lord and no one is worth that, no one is worth becoming a child that will bring heartache to the Father and His is the only opinion that should matter.

Right?…. Wrong, the problem with the shepherds and fat cattle is that it looks so good to the weak, diseased, hurting, hungry, and thirsty sheep and they flock to it, hoping the “grass is greener” hoping they will get healed, delivered, fed, and watered, only to arrive and be met with those horns as the “home” sheep  continue in their own self survival. Then the little lambs are in even worse shape because now they are in a foreign pasture left to the side to die and wondering what they did wrong. They didn’t do anything to deserve this treatment. God explains it all for exactly what it is.

This is why the accountability will also be for all those who had been driven away by cruel shepherds, and no one has looked for or cared for these wounded sheep. They have been left, lost in the wilderness, to be prey for wolves and devoured by the beasts. 

Something to ponder as we continue to look for the day of the Lord, pray and weep in humility and correct those things that we can, never turn away His sheep, love and nurture them. Jesus IS THE SHEPHERD and we will all give account to Him.

Φλογίζω Σαλπιζω  Rev. Nina Brown Johnson 2016

PARKING LOT PERPLEXITY- PONDERING PERCEPTION

I spend an unnatural amount of time in the parking lot of a local store.
That sounds like some kind of bizarre plea for help doesn’t it?
“Hi, I’m Nina and I like to spend my free time in this parking lot”!
Wouldn’t make me too many new friends but I have a really good reason for being outside rather than inside, and since we all have issues, this is one of mine, I could easily play the part of the lady in the commercial, you know the one where she is bowling and this cute little pink thing with big blue eyes keeps trying to drag her off to the restroom, finally she angrily declares “No! I am seeing my doctor!”.
Well, me and my bladder just hang out rather than suffer the nuisance and annoyance of having to find a restroom every three hundred feet.
That is my personal secret revealed for the day.
 Disturbing? Probably! Too much information? Surely! Needed to be divulged in order to write this post? Most definitely!
I had to tell you that so that you wouldn’t think I am just all kinds of weird (those who know me are now falling over laughing hysterically thinking BUT YOU ARE WEIRD!)
That point aside. I have learned a lot sitting there and watching shoppers and I always think about them and what their life is like and if they look weary, tired, or hurting, I always say a little prayer for them.
 I watch people interact with their kids and I watch the elderly go in and I wonder do they have enough food money.
And amazingly enough the majority of my posts have been birthed there, most of my series titles and scriptures have been jotted down while sitting in that parking lot and the death of “Eagle” hit me there and I sat and cried scribbling it all down as my family returned to try to understand why on earth I was crying.
So I think I have a special kind relationship with that place and the most astounding thought that I have taken from it is this, WE AS HUMANS, AS A MAJORITY SUFFER FROM THE TOTAL LACK OF PERCEPTION!
My view varies based on parking, and across the street in one direction is what was once upon a more prosperous time THE motel of the town, it has since became not quite so much so.
I think it is mainly rented out as housing and often I watch those that live there come and go from the grocery store.
One evening a couple had just came out and were trying to cross the road they were dressed very modestly and NO ONE would stop to offer them to cross the road and the more I watched, I could only think that maybe if they were dressed to the nines or in fine clothing, or were well-known people, like I don’t know a mayor, or doctor or someone of the sort, people would be glad to let them cross, but no, drivers felt it not worth their time to show kindness to this couple.
The other side facing the store, right in front of it, I have had the grandest of all pondering.
There is a local man,seen by many, but I am sure known by few if any.
He is for the most part mute, he is so sweet and the kindness oozes out of him, he is an older man and lives in an assisted living home just a tad to the side of the grocery, and he can communicate IF you are willing to listen with your HEART and not depend so much on ears.
So Me and Pinky, (the cartoon bladder) are once again sitting there ( because I had determined I AM NOT going to the bathroom AGAIN ) and the sweet man is out there and we wave at each other and he flashes me that sweet smile and there are several shopping carts haphazardly left here and there on the walk, so he gets them one by one and takes them back in the store and puts them in their place, he comes back and picks up some loose trash and throws it away, he then steps just inside the store to a little rack where I am so sure are the “Thrifty Nickel” or something to that effect, it is little papers that people run ads for anything imaginable to sale, I think they are actually free BUT if not some witty, knowledgeable store employee SHOULD KNOW THE PRICE ( but I guess that depends on who is trying to ask! )
He holds it up and shows it to a bag boy, who just looks zombified at the paper, as if it is a mysterious sphere floating down before him and shrugs and walks off, then the man turns to a cashier, who is obviously also brain-dead to the universal code language
 ( HELLO if you are holding it up, you want to know the price) and she brushes him off also, and he just puts it down, that beautiful smile has now faded and he walks silently away to the place he calls home.
So between pinky pulling my arm and these two geniuses I am growing a wee angry.
 Curlylocks is still outside after having ran away to avoid the man’s unspoken question,( never bothering to notice that the carts had been taken care of for HIM ) so I call him to my window and as gently and clearly as possible I said “He is asking you how much that paper is.” 
Curlylocks looks at me, by this point I have come to believe the dude may not really be a bag boy but is actually zombie doing a rather bad impersonation of a bag boy, he just says”Umm, I don’t know” and I just say “Okay” . 
By this point, I really kinda wanted to slap him upside his head and say “You know Sonny, you ain’t through living and one day that might just be you!”
Then I wanted to slap my own self! Why did I not just drag pinky out of the vehicle, tell the sweet man to hold on one minute, go buy the paper, give to him! I COULD HAVE DONE THAT!!!!
So now we have three geniuses! What is wrong with us as a society?
Why can we not hear what others are saying, even if they have no words?
Why do we hold to the old cop-out that if they needed anything THEY would ask, if they had a problem they would tell someone.
Why do we not listen with our hearts and be led by the spirit? When we look someone in the eye and that little tug inside of us tells us they have a need, why do we not ask? 
Why do we not care? Why will not go even an inch outside our zone to help another person?
How many chances have been missed to impact a life other than our own?
This did not happen in a parking lot but I have pondered it more than once, because it leaps to mind when I think of these things, so it belongs here.
My family has a friend that grew up with my parents, she is a wonderful woman and has dedicated her life to two people, Jesus, and raising her little grand-daughter, she is in her seventies and she called one evening and needed help, her back was hurting really badly and thought it was caused by her stomach, so me and my Dad took her to the ER, she was left for hours in a freezing cold room, when we did go back to see her, she said she was freezing so I asked for a blanket for her (which should have been offered ) and she told us that she had a broken back.
She had been doing yard work that week and had somehow slipped or something and didn’t think much of it but had actually broken her back.
She told me she needed to go the restroom and had mentioned that the nurses had been really rude to her, so I told her I’d go get someone.
Now this is around five in the morning, we had been there all night, ( They are in process of transferring her to another hospital better equipped for her injury) so I go to the desk, there’s the doctor and three of four nurses sitting around and I ask could someone please come help her to the bathroom, This young nurse just looks at me and says “Well, I’ve took her several times” (Yeah, there is obviously a limit on times one may need to go) I said “Well, she needs to go”  she just looks at the doctor and rolls her eyes and he said “Take her” she gets up, her nasty little attitude plain to see and I said “You do know that HER BACK IS BROKEN don’t you?”
She just looks at me and like nothing and almost smugly says “Yeah, I know” and it took everything in me not to say “Well, here’s the deal, one day this is going to come back and bite you so hard in your prissy little butt, one day you will be in her shoes.” 
But as a child of the Lord’s, I held my peace but it was hard, she was so smug, so smirky, so absolutely uncaring and cold that I truly would not want to be in her shoes, if that is how she chooses to treat wounded people she should have never became a nurse, she should not be allowed to care for a rock.
But it does beg the question, what happened to us? When did we grow so insensitive, so lacking as a society?
Well, I am sure it happened as we fell as a nation from the grace of God and without his presence and guidance THAT IS what happens to society and it is the biblical fulfillment of what is to become of people.
“Without natural affection”, lacking any common decency or courtesy, much less compassion toward our fellow human.
BUT more so as Christians we ARE to be the LIGHT in the darkness.
WE are to shine into this world and be different and to do that and to not fall victim to the infectious lack of caring and love growing cold, we must be aware of what is inside of us.
Jesus IS the master of perception! And of course HE IS WHO HE IS but as his children WE CAN PRAY for HIS PERCEPTION to be awake and alive in us.
People really didn’t have to tell him much,when he walked this earth he was so in tune to people he took it straight to the heart, he didn’t make them pour out their secrets, or wait till they begged for help, he addressed the problem and assured help was on the spot.
More often the people who need help the most are the ones who are LEAST likely to ask.
NO ONE WANTS TO FEEL EMBARRASSED  and shame has NO PLACE but satan sends it and if you are lead of God to help in a charitable way, keep it secret! 
AS much as you possibly can, again because NO ONE wants to feel embarrassed and calling attention to their plight and what you did to help will only embarrass them and make them feel worse than they would have if you had left them alone.
“Take heed that ye do not your alms (charitable deeds) before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee as thee hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men, Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.”          Matthew 6:1,2
So we never want to come off that way! Here’s what we want:
“But when thou doest thine alms, LET NOT THY LEFT HAND KNOW WHAT THY RIGHT HAND DOETH: that thine alms MAY BE IN SECRET: and THE FATHER SEETH IN SECRET HIMSELF SHALL REWARD THEE OPENLY”   Matthew 6:3,4
“Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask not again.
And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.
For if ye love them which love you, what thank (credit) have ye?
for sinners also do even the same.
And if you do good to them which do good to you, what thank (credit) have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, TO RECEIVE AS MUCH AGAIN.                 Luke 6:30-34
“Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father  also IS merciful.”
“GIVE, and it SHALL BE GIVEN UNTO YOU; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give unto your bosom. FOR WITH THE SAME MEASURE THAT YE METE (use)  withal it will be measured BACK UNTO YOU again.”                               Luke 6:36,38
So lets all do better, let’s make eye contact, pray for that perception and TAKE CHANCES and ASK when we feel someone has a need and remember this isn’t always about money, it can be many things, even just someone who will listen for a moment and a little help getting something off a store shelf.
And if they say “No, Thanks” what have you lost???? You have offered and God is still very pleased with that!
 But let’s please not continue to look through people as if they aren’t even there and never, ever over them, like what happened with the sweet man, when his disability was such a burden to others that they would not even TRY to understand him, and someone other than you and me sees it.

He sees it all, so let’s make sure what he sees is us being the best we can be.
Φλογιζω/ All rights reserved/ NBJ 2015



GOLDEN RULE X2



“Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.” MATTHEW 7:12

“And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.” MATTHEW 5:41,42

Quick interjection, if someone needs you to go a mile , go two. And I know people prefer the “modern English” of the scriptures and No, Jesus did not speak Old English, BUT we were given our Bible through men who risked and often lost their lives for sharing the Word of God and William Tyndale was STRANGLED AND BURNED AT THE STAKE FOR TRANSLATING THE GOSPEL, SO THAT OTHERS WOULD KNOW THE TRUTH! So for me the KJV is the only Bible it is gonna be.

How often do we really apply this to life and how often do we respect one person above another?
God himself has respect to no one person, as the parable of the hired laborers teaches us.
The eleventh hour laborers received the same wage as those who had worked all day, even though the others had worked longer hours, the latter ones had to work harder because they  had only one hour to get the job finished.
Of course the first group was angry because in their opinion they deserved more because they had toiled longer BUT the owner of this job paid the same to all  employees, such as is the kingdom of heaven, when we accept Christ we are all the same and he values none of us above the other, so a person who has served God for forty years will receive no greater reward than one who just accepted salvation!

Now that is fair and that is just! We see that God doesn’t play favorites and if God does not work that way, and neither should we!
When it comes to respect and common courtesy in the world there is often a lot left to be desired.
How often does this happen, people being ranked higher or lower on the scale of importance, and treated in a lesser fashion due to name, social status, or what they have to offer, or rather what they do not have, all of a sudden they are expendable and not quite worth the time.

As Jesus, said with everything that we do, with everyone we encounter, we should keep this well in mind BECAUSE WE WILL RECEIVE EXACTLY what we have shown BUT the BIG difference is that we will be the one on the other end of that spectrum, and for many THAT IS NOT GOING TO BE A PRETTY PLACE!
Mark MY words, YOU will be on the flip side of whatever someone else is facing today.

GALATIANS 6:7 “Be ye NOT DECEIVED; GOD IS NOT MOCKED: for whatsoever a man (human) soweth, THAT SHALL HE ALSO REAP.

If you receive a prophet, you will receive a prophets reward. Just as the lady blessed of God for helping a prophet, whose oil and flour did not run out during famine and spared her and her son a slow death of starvation.
Another lady who was blessed through the oil that flowed supernaturally that it could be sold to pay off debt sparing her and her family from servitude.
The borrowed ax head miraculously surfacing to save another, yet again from debt based slavery.
Jesus himself resurrecting the grief-stricken widow’s only son, knowing that he himself the only begotten son of the Father would also resurrect.
What if any of these had pulled a big “Well, I’ve got enough problems without having to fool with you a-tude”?
Kindness is repaid, God with not be indebted to any that have shown kindness to his people.

ACTS 9:36-42 ” Now there was a Joppa a certain disciple named Tabitha, which by interpretation is called Dorcas: this woman was FULL of good works and almsdeeds (charitable deeds) which she did.
And it came to pass in those days, that she was sick, AND DIED: whom when they had washed, they laid her in an upper chamber.
And forsomuch as (because) Lydia was nigh to (located closely to) Joppa, the disciples had heard that Peter was there, they sent unto him two men, desiring that he would not delay to come to them.
Then Peter arose and went with them. When he was come (had arrived) they brought him into the upper chamber: and all the widows stood by him weeping, and shewing him the coats (tunics) and garments which Dorcas had made, while she was with them.
But Peter put them all forth (out) and kneeled down, and prayed; and turning him to THE BODY said, Tabitha, arise.
And she OPENED her eyes: and when she saw Peter she sat up.
And he gave her his hand, and lifted her up, and when he had called the saints and widows, presented her ALIVE.
And it was known throughout all Joppa; and many believed in the Lord.”

Now the beauty in that is that many were made believers through seeing the hand of God resurrect this lady, a great gift she was given, the Bible clear to point out the love SHE had for those she helped clothe and the love THEY had in turn for her, calling upon the Lord and he answered.
Could have ended very differently had she not held this testimony, had she had an attitude of indifference and never helped anyone other than herself and her circles of friends.

So beware and very aware of how you treat others, because what holds true in life today may not hold true tomorrow.
You could find yourself wearing the shoes someone else just took off, following down a rough and rocky road they have just trod and God’s principles never change and how well you survive your own trying seasons heavily depend on how well you score on the character “testing” points of today.

GALATIANS 6:9 “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in DUE season WE SHALL REAP, IF WE FAINT NOT.”

IF we faint not tells a little of just how hard some of these seasons can be.
Simon of Cyrene was called upon to carry the Lord’s cross just as he commanded US to pick up our cross and follow him, and if while on that path another asks us to walk with them, we need to remember this lesson, it would be better to walk two miles with our brethren than to sow indifference and as a result reap the walking of four miles absolutely alone.

 ORIGINAL POST@FOWC 08/29/14Φλογίζω/   NBJ 2015/ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Golden Rule X2 N. BrownJohnson/ Φλογιζω















WITH FRIENDS LIKE THAT..

I love old sayings, people long ago learned lessons and passed that wisdom down to forewarn future generations.
Ministers are like front line soldiers discovering what’s in the enemies arsenal and reporting back to the troops what weapon is needed to take them down.
Some of the wisest words ever spoken were, “With friends like that, who needs enemies.”
As Paul said “when he thought to do good, evil was ever-present with him.” Sometimes it is difficult for us to see just who our real enemies are.
Think about it, the Bible says that Satan himself “can transform into an angel of light” and we know that he is well versed in the scripture and loves nothing more than to try to twist the word of God to snare, trap, and pervert us.
Genesis 3:1(a) “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made…” and most know this story, through convincing Eve that she really, really wanted this and she should just trust him, it would all be okay, he deceived her into making a decision that we all paid for and Jesus gave his life to repair the damage that “friend” caused.
David, not even trying to resist his lust for Bathsheba ( I know it was lust because he had tried to get Uriah to go home, hoping he would sleep with her and think he had fathered the baby and let them all live a lie) when all of his plans failed, he in effect had Uriah “murdered by war” using him to deliver his own death warrant.
The wages of sin are death, this brought it down on his entire family. Nathan the Prophet went so far as to deliver the judgment handed down from God that the sword would never leave David’s house.
So that voice as the serpent rose again, David’s son Amnon became completely possessed by a spirit of incestuous lust toward his half-sister Tamar. As Satan purposed all this in Amnon’s heart he sent his messenger with just the reassurance Amnon’s flesh needed to act upon that lust.
2 Samuel 13:2,3 ” And Amnon was so vexed (distressed) that he feel sick for his sister Tamar, for she was a virgin; and Amnon thought it hard for him to do anything to her ( knew it was wrong ). But Amnon had a friend whose name was Jonadab, the son of Shiva David’s brother: and Jonadab was a very subtil man.”
His “friend” talked him into raping her, destroying her and filling her brother (his half ) Absalom with such hate that it mirrors the rebellion Lucifer led in his attempt to overthrow the Kingdom of Heaven.
He had Amnon murdered and led a rebellion against David and died trying to flee David’s army, when his long beautiful hair became caught and tangled on a tree branch leaving him helpless against the sword.
Snared and tangled up, some prophetic symbolism in that, what unchecked bitterness and hate will do to us.
That is what happens when one person chooses to listen to the wrong voice. A girl’s life was completely devastated, two brothers were dead, two mothers, a father, and an entire kingdom was left to mourn and to never be the same.
One more example, sometimes the enemy wants to take you down so bad that he will send a multitude of voices, because after all, how can so many be so wrong?
The story of Queen Esther tells us of Haman, the King’s power-hungry, right hand boy who hated the Jews especially Mordecai ( Esther’s uncle ) because Mordecai refused to bow to him. So Amidst his whining over the injustice of the situation, Esther 5:14 “Then said Zeresh his wife and all his friends unto him, Let a gallows be made fifty cubits high, and on the morrow speak thou unto the king that Mordecai may be hanged thereon: then go merrily with the king unto the banquet. and this thing pleased Haman; and he caused the gallows to be made.”
Long story short, Haman was hanged on his own gallows and Mordecai got his job.
God tells us “surely they shall gather together, but not by me, no weapon that is formed against you shall prosper.”
Haman fell into his own trap, a trap laid at the urging of those closest to him, who supposedly had his best interests in mind, telling him exactly what his blackened, sin-laden heart wanted to hear.
So like those collect calls from Egypt, you don’t realize the price until you get the bill and if you knew the cost you would have never agreed to accept those charges, it may be a bill like David’s, that his family ended up having to pay.
Your true friends may not understand your faith, but they will respect it and be happy for you.
Read Luke 15:8,9 the parable of the lady who found her lost silver and her friends rejoiced with her.
Steer clear of “friends” who only want to drag you back to “Egypt”, because misery loves company and if they are not free they surely don’t want you to be.
Just as with Adam and Eve, once the blinders were off and their eyes were opened to the truth,they knew the sin and the shame.
Amnon, when his “love” immediately turned to complete disgust and hatred once he had achieved his desire.
That is what sin does and no matter how good they make it sound or tell you just how much you are missing, if you give in to them, when the day comes, and it will come, like Adam and Eve’s eyes were opened, yours will be also and I promise you that your are not going to like what you see.
The truth is that not only are friends like these a danger to your soul, they also endanger theirs by tempting you as a child of God.
As the Bible teaches us, if we as believers defile this temple God will destroy it (us).
Daniel 5 tells the story of Belshazzar, who had the bright idea that it would be fun to defile the vessels of the Lord which had been taken from the temple by Nebuchadnezzar.
He and all with him drank from them, while praising their false pagan gods and having the equivalent to a big drunken feast, within an hour,  his eyes beheld with horror and his knees actually shook with terror as a hand appeared from nowhere and proceeded to write out his death warrant on his own wall, when Daniel interrupted it he would soon learn that no one could save him from the judgment of God and he was dead that night.
We are vessels, holy unto the Lord, set aside for his use and anyone who wishes to defile us will truly have hell to pay.
Friends like these you don’t need. Pray and ask the Lord for real ones. And while you are waiting, remember he is the best friend you will ever have!

Companion post:COLLECT CALL FROM EGYPT. WILL YOU ACCEPT THE CHARGES?
A theme song for you, “Satisfaction” David Phelps

Φλογίζω / 05/24/2014. All rights reserved. Rev. Nina BrownJohnson 2015