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Archive for April, 2010

There was a wise old owl who lived in an oak; the more he heard, the less he spoke. The less he spoke, the more he heard; why can’t we be like that wise old bird?

“But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God” (James 1:19).

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No Coincidence!

Headlining today’s Drudge Report are two unusual phenomena: a flashing fireball and the eruption of a volcano in Iceland. What is extraordinary is that both have taken place within the same 24-hour period!

Now I have always been reluctant to be quick to jump to conclusions or to go to extremes — especially where it has anything to do with the return of Christ.

But as soon as I looked at both occurrences and made an immediate connection, my thoughts turned toward Acts 2:17-21:

17″ ‘In the last days, God says,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your young men will see visions,
your old men will dream dreams.
18Even on my servants, both men and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days,
and they will prophesy.
19I will show wonders in the heaven above
and signs on the earth below,
blood and fire and billows of smoke.
20The sun will be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood
before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.
21And everyone who calls
on the name of the Lord will be saved.

In my mind, there is no coincidence here (note especially v.19): I believe God is speaking to people everywhere through these signs about what His Word already says: to repent of your sin, give your life to Jesus and get right with God, for the last days are quickly approaching.

Those days will result in judgment upon those who rebel against Him, but salvation for those who belong to Him.

I close with words from Jesus about the signs of the times before His return from Luke 21:25-28:

25″There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. 26Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. 27At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

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Satan

“Satan” is the Hebrew word used to describe the most powerful fallen angel in Scripture. His name means “adversary,” and you’re aware of his other most common name: the devil. The Greek word for “devil” is “slanderer.”

Satan utterly despises God and he utterly despises you. He “apes” everything that God does; he mocks you and God and he is an Expert counterfeiter.

God is pure love and gives that pure love to the objects of His affection: you and me. Satan hates with a hatred that goes beyond the combined hatred of the most evil people that have ever lived.

One billion Stalin’s, Hitler’s and Chairman Mao’s could not come close to this utterly violent being who is behind the destruction and evil that has plagued humanity from its inception.

God is a God of truth; Satan is the god of lies and deception. God promises an abundant life now (along with trials, adversity and hardships that He uses to make us more like Jesus – who endured them all) and He promises eternal life to those who belong to Jesus Christ.

Satan promises “fun,” “excitement,” “entertainment,” and enjoyment, but his promises do not last and ultimately lead to pain. He carefully lures people into a trap of ruin.

Where there is purity from God, Satan twists that purity into something that degrades. Where there is the health of innocence, Satan trivializes that innocence and prompts people to corruption.

Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, but a day is coming quickly when Satan will use a man that the Bible calls the “Antichrist” to deceive people into worshiping this man that he will give his full power to.

Incidentally, the Greek word “anti” can mean substitute. When the antichrist comes on the world scene, he will appear to the biblically ignorant as Christ Himself. He will have it all: charisma, good looks, charm, answers and miracles.

But all these are designed to “hook” people into worshiping him – what he has always craved.

This world is quite ripe for him now: people are desperate for answers to their problems, but they refuse to humble themselves, give their lives to Jesus and live His way – the best way possible – because they don’t want to give up their sinful nature.

Moreover, far too many people idolize people of influence, charm and power.

If you’re a believer in Jesus Christ, have you fallen into Satan’s lies and deception about who you really are in Christ? Have you believed lies about who God really is and about who you really can become in Christ?

And if you’re not a believer in Jesus Christ – and I speak with love here – Jesus says that you are under the power of the evil one himself.

You may chafe at that but it is true nevertheless. And who are you going to believe anyway: yourself and your makeshift philosophy about life – or Jesus Christ?

I will speak more boldly, yet still in love: if you want to spend eternity in heaven, but you think you can get there on your own merits (because you’re “a good person”), you’re gravely mistaken.

You are a sinner; only Jesus Christ can take away your sin, forgive you, make you His own and give you entrance into heaven – a place that has infinitely more joy and fulfillment than the best days of joy and fulfillment you’ve ever experienced – combined.

You can receive Jesus now – and be freed from Satan’s grip – by simply asking Him! Pray these words out loud to Him now: Lord Jesus, thank You for dying on the cross to take my punishment, my sins, upon Yourself.

I choose to delay no longer in taking You as my Lord and my Savior to follow You all of my life. Come into my life now; forgive me and cleanse me. I now belong to You.

If you just prayed that prayer, please get in touch with me and I’ll help you to begin the Christian life in a way that you can flourish.

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Humanity’s deepest need is salvation from its greatest poison: our sinful nature.

We like to think of ourselves as “good.” But in God’s sight, apart from the merits of Jesus Christ, we are frankly evil — and we know it!

But what is God’s deepest provision for humanity’s deepest need?

It is a free gift of grace, leading to forgiveness of sin, removal of guilt and shame and a redeemed, restored relationship with Him — through faith in Jesus Christ.

Do you have that relationship right now? If you died today, can you state with complete assurance whether you would spend eternity in heaven or hell?

Have you believed the great lie that life apart from a relationship with Jesus Christ is “more fun”? It is Satan’s voice that speaks that lie to humanity.

There can be no truer form of happiness, joy, purpose and destiny fulfilled than in a life fully yielded over to Jesus, who gave His life for you, so that you can be free from standing before God on the Day of Judgment to account for the billions of sins that you’ve committed against him over your lifetime.

Instead, you will, by surrendering your life to Jesus, stand before Him to receive rewards when you go to heaven and you will live now in the purpose for which you were created!

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