“Good beats upon the damned incessantly as sound waves beat on the ears of the deaf, but they cannot receive it. Their fists are clenched, their teeth are clenched, their eyes fast shut. First they will not, in the end they cannot, open their hands for gifts, or their mouth for food, or their eyes to see.” ― C.S. Lewis, The Great Divorce I SEE DEAD PEOPLE!!! Yes , you read that right, and no, I have not started to commune with the spirits,; and yet every day I see hordes of “Walking Dead” aimlessly wander in ever decreasing circles of nihilism and hopelessness in their frenetic search for purpose. The greatest Killer of the modern age is SPIRITUAL NECROSIS. For those of you who have never heard of it, here’s the definition” the death of most or all of the cells in an organ or tissue due to disease, injury, or failure of the blood supply.” It is a particularly repugnant malaise, as it is cumulative and progressive,; thus if one is unfortunate enough to contract it , then symptoms start out quite benignly, but quickly progress. The first symptom is a “numbness” often in ones extremities, for example the toes- left untreated, this spreads out along the foot, leg etc. Eventually “Rot” sets in, accompanied by increasing levels of pain and an unbearable stench. As the parts of the body affected “blacken”, the only remedy available is AMPUTATION. If this does not happen in time then the infection will spread and consume tissue and organs until death occurs. So let’s assume a person after being examined by their doctor is diagnosed with necrosis- it is beholden on that physician to give a the best treatment advice possible Firstly the risk factors which contributed to this malaise must be identified and eliminated from the person’s life- for example no more cigarettes Secondly, the body must be repaired and the onslaught of this invasion must be fought with proper medicines especially antibiotics Lifestyle changes are mandated and must be immediately introduced to one’s daily routine- walking, running, swimming Dietary measures must also be incorporated to defend the body against further attack The person should be provided with a list of Support organisations where they can “fellowship” with survivors who are fighting the same plight. OR The doctor could LIE to the individual and tell them that they’re fine and should continue smoking, drinking whatever makes them happy. For sure , in the short term the person will be relieved and fall back into the old routine- in essence they are laying the tracks for the “bullet train” that will one day (sooner rather than later),run them over. OR The doctor could put aside conventional medicine and recommend the Middle Age “cure” of attaching LEECHES to the affected body parts , in the hope of “sucking out “ the poison and rendering that person back to good health. Such a doctor would be a QUACK. Need I labour the obvious allegory with leading the Christian life? 1) You must accept the Axiom that “YOU ARE SICK”. YES, you; that thoroughly nice person who wouldn’t harm a fly and is secretly quite pleased with your “niceness”. Unless you are honest with yourself and realise that ALL of us are unworthy of God’s mercy then you have not accepted the need for a Saviour. Just continue on being a nice person and your good works will build the bridge to Heaven. No it won’t. Repentance is the antibiotic that neutralises the necrotic rot that is attacking your soul. “Sorry seems to be the hardest word”- but unless you see your sins for what they truly- self- administered cuts, ; then you will bleed to death Repentance is an acknowledgement of this fact. You can choose your fate. Will it be “Death by a thousand cuts” or “A new Life – becoming born again with the price for admittance your precious sanctimonious perverse self-satisfaction. 2) The damage wrought to your soul must be repaired- this can only be accomplished by accepting the medicine that is His Word from the greatest healer of them all Jesus Christ. You can’t heal yourself is the message of Jesus Christ. “I AM THE WAY,THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE” One of my brethren was telling me about her struggle with leading a good life. At one point she blurted out “Pastor G, I need SEX”. Having recovered my composure sufficiently, I told her that her perception was the problem, not her carnal desires. She looked at me with great scepticism. Thus I had to begin with first principles- Who “made” sex? God, of course But just as important a question is “WHY did he do it?” Firstly for the propagation of humanity, and secondly to give Him glory. We need to unpack this answer. When one MAN and one WOMAN join together in holy matrimony- they become ONE flesh. They have been born again into a single new entity. Our Creator in His wisdom has deemed marriage to be the ONLY place where sexual relations are blessed. Thus if you accept this command, you are already giving God glory through obedience. What about the aforementioned lady who needs “sex”? The simple answer is No, she doesn’t. Notice the words used “I”, “need”- Who’s missing from this equation- GOD- the one who put that desire in her. God wants her to be happy- but the path does not run through the swamp of self-satisfying indulgence; rather, the high mountain of obedience. Her need is not for sex, but to find a suitable husband and form a sacred bond that will delight and honour God by giving Him glory and by a process of osmosis satisfy not only her carnal desires, but her spiritual ones too. As I have said many times before, Christianity gives us new eyes and in the process changes our perceptions. If you just “need sex” then your perceptions are consciously narrowed down to parameters that will aid you in that particular endeavour- these factors are extrinsic and shallow and focus on external things- looks, wealth and so on. Thus you have corralled yourself into a ghetto where you will undoubtedly find your carnality satisfied, but your soul starved. You are like a thirsty person in a desert who has her eyes fixed on a beautiful oasis and has been daily racing towards it’s promise of limitless cool water, only to discover that this promise was a mirage that tantalised her senses as it’s empty well burgled her bank of hope. If you take God at His Word and realise your need for sex can only be satisfied fully within the sacrament of marriage, then your perceptions are not only widened but immensely changed. The focus is not on You anymore but on something more precious. You are now searching for a life partner who will be soul-mate, husband and father. Imagine you are using one of those holiday search engines to find a bling- tastic hotel for your holidays and it just keeps throwing up no star FLEABAG dives. The fault lies with your filter settings- Set it to 5 star and it will throw up the desired results. A core tenet of Christian matrimony is the concept of two becoming one flesh. That means that the old you will be no more, however you MAY become something infinitely more precious. Note I use the term “MAY”. If your fiance is not a real Christian, then this transformation cannot occur- it is like purposefully grafting a cancerous tumour onto an otherwise healthy organ- the tumour will cannibalise the healthy tissue. God will not be a “Father-in-law” to someone who worships other gods, most notably the god of this world, Satan. Thus when seeking a soul mate, extrinsic factors which are by their very nature quixotic, shifting and shallow; are eschewed in favour of the permanent solid “bricks” of Faith, selfless love and obedience. With God at the centre of such a partnership which sets out from the start to worship him- the real transformation can now take place. We’ve all heard the maxim that two heads are better than one (try telling that to Siamese twins) - So are two souls if they are both fixed on God; because then by a blessed alchemy these two imperfect souls are joined and transformed from leaden broken vessels into a golden receptacle capable of holding the precious Blood and reflecting some of that blessed light back to The Father. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xl_SZjWNSaw
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“If you set out to be liked, you would be prepared to compromise on anything at any time, and you would achieve nothing." ~ Margaret Thatcher” Overdue G sermon : What is a Christian? 3 second answer: Someone who loves Jesus However if we use this simple definition then we can instantly identify not merely the REAL Christians, but the FAKE ones- The modern day Pharisees who may profess Christ as Their Saviour, but are untouched by The Holy Spirit. What does it mean to LOVE Jesus? Real Love has a number of distinguishing characteristics; 1) It permeates all and every aspect of our lives. Just consider the love you have for your children- Do you just check in on them one day a week on Sunday for 20 minutes , to make sure they are o.k? Unless you are an abortion loving Democrat, your children will take up a significant portion of your “mental” real estate, even when they are apart from you- We think about them constantly, because we LOVE them In this way love is as unconscious as breathing. Thoughts and images of those we love subconsciously appear as smoke signals in our brains lit up by the fire of passion in our hearts. Thus if you don’t find yourself thinking of Jesus subconsciously multiple times each day- then your heart is a cold, empty thing, giving out neither heat nor light, ; and stubbornly refusing the “kindling” of His Word to provide the spark that will warm and comfort you 2) Love can be hard work sometimes. At the last Supper, Jesus said “I give you a new commandment-Love one another as I have loved you” There are a few things to note here: Firstly, Love is a “Commandment”. Often we think of the saccharine, syrupy act of “falling in love”; which is possibly one of the easiest things that any of us will ever do. Typically we have absolutely no control over it, and more often than not that “sugar rush” of emotion will lead to a lethargy of affection in a very short time. How often have those we loved let us down, broke our hearts or just took our love for granted? Our natural instinct is to return fire- to trade injury for injury, scorn for scorn, hurt for hurt. It feels good, does it not? The petty little god of revenge has received his tribute, but he is never sated. Revenge is an unnatural beast that gorges on the battered broken bodies of its own kin. Gorging on itself “knowing not that it was eating death” (Milton, Paradise Lost) Seekers of revenge are like self-harmers who cut themselves- the release of blood gives them temporary relief, but it always ends in a trip to the hospital and more pain. In The Old Testament, allowance was made for revenge, and thus “An eye for an eye” was considered appropriate; but Jesus put an end to all of that “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:33–35). Secondly, Love is often bestowed on someone completely unworthy of the privilege. Jesus loved us when we were at our most unlovable- He loved us as the nails were driven into His precious hands and feet, as the whip tore into His flesh; as He watched His beloved Mother kneel at that Cross, unable to cradle the fruit of her blessed womb. In His agony as the drops of Blood fell to the ground and the very stones were screaming out for Mercy, He raised His eyes to Heaven imploring His Father to “Forgive them, for they know not what they do”. This is LOVE . This is the standard; and I am here to tell you that ALL of us fall short. 3) This love can only come about by immersing yourself in Jesus. You must allow him to change your heart of stone for a heart of flesh and blood. This is the new commandment. “Just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” But not by copying my fruit, but by connecting to MY VINE. You don’t mainly imitate. You participate. Your love for each other is not a simulation of mine, but a manifestation of mine. You are the branches. I am the vine. If you abide in me, you can bear fruit, and prove to be my disciples (John 15:8). This is how all people know you are truly my disciples. So the reason the love we have for each other shows that we are truly Jesus’ disciples, is that it is only possible because we are grafted into the life and love of Christ. We love as he loved, because we love with his love. Only real Christians possess this type of love. It is a gift of Grace that can only be bestowed by God. 4) Real love is something that you don’t keep to yourself- YOU SHOUT IT FROM THE ROOFTOPS. A little example- How often have you got chatting to a stranger on a train, plane, pub and in double quick time they tell you about their spouse and kids, usually accompanied by a picture that they quickly extract from their wallet. The pride with which they describe even the most quotidian achievements of their children is emblematic of a tsunami of love that flows from their hearts. Do you love Jesus with such a love? Is your love for Him life a bottomless ocean or is it a mean little drop that wouldn’t sate the thirst of a fly? How often have you proclaimed your love for Jesus to friends, family, strangers, today, this week, this month? Will your silence condemn you and reveal the depths of your self deception? 5) Real Christian love has a purpose- To bring as many people Home to The Father as possible. That was the reason why Jesus allowed Himself to be murdered on That Cross- because it was only at this junction that MERCY, JUSTICE LOVE and REDEMPTION intersected and allowed one dimensional creatures to become three dimensional CHILDREN of God. “This world is a great sculptor’s shop. We are the statues and there’s a rumour going around the shop that some of us are someday going to come to life.” C.S Lewis “Christians” who bemoan the lack of “purpose” in their lives have not tapped into the celestial energy grid that connects them to “The Vine”. Their purpose is revealed in the Life, Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. One day you will be asked by your Creator a simple Question “Did you fulfil your purpose?” At that very instant a terrible realisation will dawn on the unredeemed fakers What can’t you do in heaven? Two Things : Commit Sin + Evangelise If you have immersed yourself In the ocean of true Christian Love that is Jesus, you will have discovered the cleansing properties of that “Holy and Life giving “ water. You are being cleansed and purified of your corrupt nature to such an extent that the dirt of sin becomes more and more distasteful to you. Did you really think that you could stand in the presence of our Father God, who is pure goodness and light while the rotten carcass of your sinful nature is still attached to you? . Light and Darkness cannot co-exist. You can’t evangelise in Heaven, because all of its inhabitants have inherited The Kingdom and have become children of God. They are basking in the Joy of being in the presence of The Father. The “lukewarm” Christian will see their entire life flash before their face;as the penny drops and the words “WASTED OPPORTUNTY”, will be the watermark that is imprinted on every frame. How tragic it is to find that an entire lifetime is wasted in pursuit of distractions while purpose is neglected The gates of Heaven will close to an admonition that awakes in the minds of every lost soul “IF ONLY..............” “If your life is Christ, then your death will be only more of Christ, forever. If your life is only Christlessness, then your death will be only more Christlessness, forever. That's not fundamentalism, that's the law of non-contradiction.” ― Peter Kreeft, Jesus-Shock https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFPTjcS4E_U
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“Every one is worthy of love, except him who thinks that he is. Love is a sacrament that should be taken kneeling.” ― Oscar Wilde, De Profundis Let's have a G Sermon: Is your house well insulated? Does your state of the art triple glazing keep out every errant draft? Does your house possess that all important A+++ energy rating????? What about your soul- How well are you insulated against The Devil and his army of Demons? Satan never ever stops trying to find a way into the fortress that is your soul. In fact if you don’t have the requisite insulation then any “heat” that you generate may be lost quickly through the “cracks and draughts” that you ignored . Satan is the proverbial opportunist- Was it not Jesus who admonished him thus “Get thee behind me Satan” The Deceiver was not hiding in the bushes or crouched behind a rock- he was out in front; not merely waiting for Jesus to stumble, but arranging a personalised conflagration of temptations and tactics that would have the greatest chance of working on The Son of God. Satan is NOT some harmless pantomime villain, easily OUTED by a boisterous chorus of “he’s behind you”. When he comes at you he will launch a FULL FRONTAL attack; at your weakest point. Whether you believe it or not you are in a War. Not against” flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this world's darkness, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the Heavenly realms," So what are His battle plans: 1) He plays on vulnerabilities: This tactic works best with young people. Many have low self esteem and desperately crave acceptance by their peers- a tattoo here, a bad dye job there, and a complete acquiescence to the slew of popular “causes” that are the tax for admittance to the worldly elite’s “frat house”. 2) He disguises himself as an “Angel of Light”. Did you really think that a being as clever and manipulative as Satan would announce his presence loudly with a tail, a set of Halloween horns and an evil Hillary Clinton cackle. Shame on you. Never underestimate him Thus he will use the tactics of misrepresentation and obfuscation to deceive. A few examples will illustrate this strategem. How often have you heard the term “Social Justice”? Since when does Justice need an adjective? This term is bandied about like confetti at a wedding and used as a “Trojan Horse” to justify everything from Abortion on demand to free hormone blockers for confused children who have been conned into believing in the whole “Trans” myth. 3) While Christ warned us to resist sin, Satan presents Himself as “The rebel WITH a cause”; (albeit your destruction!!!) You can just see him in your mind’s eye, looking like James Dean, smirking as he tells you to ignore those kill joys-“ Get out there, have some fun, live life to the max.” Of course, we all know what eventually happens to those who yield, and indulge their sinful natures- the party eventually comes to an end. As you wander around the relativistic wasteland of excess that you created, you feel an aloneness that is more painful than any hurt you have ever experienced. There’s no one to pick you up now- the cool crowd have moved on.You can’t remember the moment you crossed over from “trendy to tacky”, but the party has moved on without you. Satan doesn’t do sloppy seconds and is searching for his next willing victim. 4) Satan’s biggest weapon is PRIDE : He is a virtuoso at playing this instrument. In fact it is through “PRIDE” that Satan attracts the largest number of sinners to join his hellish orchestra. The apotheosis if this strategy is to not only remove shame from the commission of certain sins, but to have people define themselves by a singular sin and take PRIDE in this self categorisation. The “Pride” celebrations that homosexuals feel obligated to inflict on the rest of us are a case in point. Homosexuality is an offence against God and against nature; but notice how this sin is “packaged”. Those who preach Truth, are cast as hateful bigots. But do not worry, were we not promised that “The world would hate us”? Pride and Disobedience go hand in hand and the story of Samson is particularly apt here. We all know of Samson’s great strength- and God had a very special purpose for him. But he never lived up to his potential. Most people think that Samson's great weakness was his unquenchable desire for Heathen Philistine women- Women who openly mocked God and like many modern heathenists revelled in their carnality. No, this was a symptom of His core flaw which was PRIDE: He was too proud to settle for a Hebrew girlfriend. When he saw a pretty Philistine woman in Timnah, he insisted his parents “get her for me as my wife.” Even though the Scriptures commanded him not to intermarry with women from other nations, Samson considered himself above the rules. He was too proud to listen to the counsel of His parents. When his mother and father tried to persuade him to marry a girl from his own people Samson disregarded their counsel. “A wise son heeds his father’s instruction, but a mocker does not listen to rebuke” (Proverbs 13:1). He was too proud to see that Delilah was his enemy. When she seduced him and begged him to reveal the secret of his strength, Samson was so arrogant he couldn’t imagine any woman deliberately harming him. He thought he was invincible and eventually told her the secret of his strength. If she cut his hair he’d be as weak as a kitten. She did…he was! Not until the very end when he was blinded, chained, and humiliated by the enemy did Samson humble himself before God. Then God’s strength was poured out on him in power and he “killed many more when he died than while he lived” (Judges 16:30). Anyone who desires to utilise God-given talents to the fullest would do well to learn from Samson’s example and make 1 Peter 5:6 a theme verse. “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.” The greatest antibiotic against Pride is HUMILITY. Humble yourself before The Saviour. His Word is The Bread of Life. If you don’t accept the only food that the universe grows then you will starve. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BcNGnRx_QO0
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I grasped a lovely masked procession, And caught things from a horror show… I’d gladly settle for a false impression, If it would last a little longer, though.” ― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe G Sermon: The disciples had been in Jesus presence for almost three years and during that time they had seen miracles,- sight being restored to the blind, the lame walk, the dead being reacquainted with the business of living. Most importantly, they had learned about The Kingdom of Heaven, not from realtor but from The Owner. Jesus knew His time on earth was short, so it was time to give His Disciples the final test- Could they identify Him? As always, Peter tended to speak for all the disciples, so Christ put the question to him in Matthew 16:16 “But what about you?” Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by My Father in heaven.…” There are a couple of things to note here: God reveals certain truths to His elect. Many people complain that when they listen for God’s voice, all they hear is a “Great Silence”. They remind me of people sitting at their computer vainly trying to access the internet without first subscribing to a service provider. Celestial broadband is at your fingertips- and Peter exchanged a dial up connection for broadband in a few simple clicks: 1) He took up the challenge. He left EVERYTHING and followed Jesus 2) He walked, talked and learned at the Saviour’s feet 3) When others were drifting away because Jesus did not fit their concept of a “Messiah”,; Peter stayed, with the words ,"Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life; and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God." John 6:68-69. 4) When he “blew it” during Christ’s Passion, and denied The Saviour out of fear- He begged for forgiveness and atoned for his momentary lack of resolve. 5) He spent his remaining time on earth preaching The Good News of The Kingdom 6) He died a martyr’s death. So where do you “fit” on “The Peter Scale”? You complain of a silence and yet you make no effort to tune in to His Voice . The test of a real Christian is the answer they give to the final exam question “WHO IS JESUS”? Every Christian will invariably say “The Son Of God”; but many do not believe it. Those who do, will seek Him out regularly through The Word he provided us with. If you truly believe Jesus to be the Son of God, then nothing is more important than knowing His message . A message from Our Creator that contains the blueprint for eternal life!!!!!!!!!!!! We have an expression "The scales fell from my eyes".This means that you acquire the discernment to see things as they truly are. For example that beautiful woman you fell in love with that may hide an iceberg of selfishness, petty cruelty and worldliness, on which your ship of hopes,dreams and love would have been dashed into a thousand pieces.(The fall of Samson is a case in point) “God gives us not only the truth but also the ability to believe it; not only the new thing to see but also the new eye to see it with.”In essence, God gives us NEW EYES. These eyes are God's sonar for avoiding the icebergs of life, because they penetrate far more deeply than our worldly vision. An unredeemed person is in essence a hopeless junkie, strung out on the opiates of carnality and selfishness. How can you hope for discernement, unless you check yourself into “rehab” and start a program of detoxification. In essence you must withdraw from the world for a time The world is like a Vegas Casino, all bright Lights and fun- but morning will come and empty pockets and sore heads are all you have to remind you of giving yourself up to the “siren’s melody”. As the toxins of sin and worldliness are expunged – the fugue that has dimmed your mind is replaced by a singular clarity of thought. The obfuscating mists of deception have eventually begun to lift, exposing the quicksand into which you were about to thread. Now you are “Clean and sober”. You will leave the protective cocoon of “rehab” and go out into the world once more. If you return to your old ways, friends and practices; then you are lost. You must “be in the world,but not of it”. You must allow yourself to be transformed by a “Higher Power” We know it as the Holy Spirit. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j1VL-y9JHuI
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“If you set out to be liked, you would be prepared to compromise on anything at any time, and you would achieve nothing." ~ Margaret Thatcher” Overdue G sermon : What is a Christian? 3 second answer: Someone who loves Jesus However if we use this simple definition then we can instantly identify not merely the REAL Christians, but the FAKE ones- The modern day Pharisees who may profess Christ as Their Saviour, but are untouched by The Holy Spirit. What does it mean to LOVE Jesus? Real Love has a number of distinguishing characteristics; 1) It permeates all and every aspect of our lives. Just consider the love you have for your children- Do you just check in on them one day a week on Sunday for 20 minutes , to make sure they are o.k? Unless you are an abortion loving Democrat, your children will take up a significant portion of your “mental” real estate, even when they are apart from you- We think about them constantly, because we LOVE them In this way love is as unconscious as breathing. Thoughts and images of those we love subconsciously appear as smoke signals in our brains lit up by the fire of passion in our hearts. Thus if you don’t find yourself thinking of Jesus subconsciously multiple times each day- then your heart is a cold, empty thing, giving out neither heat nor light, ; and stubbornly refusing the “kindling” of His Word to provide the spark that will warm and comfort you 2) Love can be hard work sometimes. At the last Supper, Jesus said “I give you a new commandment-Love one another as I have loved you” There are a few things to note here: Firstly, Love is a “Commandment”. Often we think of the saccharine, syrupy act of “falling in love”; which is possibly one of the easiest things that any of us will ever do. Typically we have absolutely no control over it, and more often than not that “sugar rush” of emotion will lead to a lethargy of affection in a very short time. How often have those we loved let us down, broke our hearts or just took our love for granted? Our natural instinct is to return fire- to trade injury for injury, scorn for scorn, hurt for hurt. It feels good, does it not? The petty little god of revenge has received his tribute, but he is never sated. Revenge is an unnatural beast that gorges on the battered broken bodies of its own kin. Gorging on itself “knowing not that it was eating death” (Milton, Paradise Lost) Seekers of revenge are like self-harmers who cut themselves- the release of blood gives them temporary relief, but it always ends in a trip to the hospital and more pain. In The Old Testament, allowance was made for revenge, and thus “An eye for an eye” was considered appropriate; but Jesus put an end to all of that “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:33–35). Secondly, Love is often bestowed on someone completely unworthy of the privilege. Jesus loved us when we were at our most unlovable- He loved us as the nails were driven into His precious hands and feet, as the whip tore into His flesh; as He watched His beloved Mother kneel at that Cross, unable to cradle the fruit of her blessed womb. In His agony as the drops of Blood fell to the ground and the very stones were screaming out for Mercy, He raised His eyes to Heaven imploring His Father to “Forgive them, for they know not what they do”. This is LOVE . This is the standard; and I am here to tell you that ALL of us fall short. 3) This love can only come about by immersing yourself in Jesus. You must allow him to change your heart of stone for a heart of flesh and blood. This is the new commandment. “Just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” But not by copying my fruit, but by connecting to MY VINE. You don’t mainly imitate. You participate. Your love for each other is not a simulation of mine, but a manifestation of mine. You are the branches. I am the vine. If you abide in me, you can bear fruit, and prove to be my disciples (John 15:8). This is how all people know you are truly my disciples. So the reason the love we have for each other shows that we are truly Jesus’ disciples, is that it is only possible because we are grafted into the life and love of Christ. We love as he loved, because we love with his love. Only real Christians possess this type of love. It is a gift of Grace that can only be bestowed by God. 4) Real love is something that you don’t keep to yourself- YOU SHOUT IT FROM THE ROOFTOPS. A little example- How often have you got chatting to a stranger on a train, plane, pub and in double quick time they tell you about their spouse and kids, usually accompanied by a picture that they quickly extract from their wallet. The pride with which they describe even the most quotidian achievements of their children is emblematic of a tsunami of love that flows from their hearts. Do you love Jesus with such a love? Is your love for Him life a bottomless ocean or is it a mean little drop that wouldn’t sate the thirst of a fly? How often have you proclaimed your love for Jesus to friends, family, strangers, today, this week, this month? Will your silence condemn you and reveal the depths of your self deception? 5) Real Christian love has a purpose- To bring as many people Home to The Father as possible. That was the reason why Jesus allowed Himself to be murdered on That Cross- because it was only at this junction that MERCY, JUSTICE LOVE and REDEMPTION intersected and allowed one dimensional creatures to become three dimensional CHILDREN of God. “This world is a great sculptor’s shop. We are the statues and there’s a rumour going around the shop that some of us are someday going to come to life.” C.S Lewis “Christians” who bemoan the lack of “purpose” in their lives have not tapped into the celestial energy grid that connects them to “The Vine”. Their purpose is revealed in the Life, Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. One day you will be asked by your Creator a simple Question “Did you fulfil your purpose?” At that very instant a terrible realisation will dawn on the unredeemed fakers What can’t you do in heaven? Two Things : Commit Sin + Evangelise If you have immersed yourself In the ocean of true Christian Love that is Jesus, you will have discovered the cleansing properties of that “Holy and Life giving “ water. You are being cleansed and purified of your corrupt nature to such an extent that the dirt of sin becomes more and more distasteful to you. Did you really think that you could stand in the presence of our Father God, who is pure goodness and light while the rotten carcass of your sinful nature is still attached to you? . Light and Darkness cannot co-exist. You can’t evangelise in Heaven, because all of its inhabitants have inherited The Kingdom and have become children of God. They are basking in the Joy of being in the presence of The Father. The “lukewarm” Christian will see their entire life flash before their face;as the penny drops and the words “WASTED OPPORTUNTY”, will be the watermark that is imprinted on every frame. How tragic it is to find that an entire lifetime is wasted in pursuit of distractions while purpose is neglected The gates of Heaven will close to an admonition that awakes in the minds of every lost soul “IF ONLY..............” “If your life is Christ, then your death will be only more of Christ, forever. If your life is only Christlessness, then your death will be only more Christlessness, forever. That's not fundamentalism, that's the law of non-contradiction.” ― Peter Kreeft, Jesus-Shock https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFPTjcS4E_U
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“Every one is worthy of love, except him who thinks that he is. Love is a sacrament that should be taken kneeling.” ― Oscar Wilde, De Profundis Let's have a G Sermon: Is your house well insulated? Does your state of the art triple glazing keep out every errant draft? Does your house possess that all important A+++ energy rating????? What about your soul- How well are you insulated against The Devil and his army of Demons? Satan never ever stops trying to find a way into the fortress that is your soul. In fact if you don’t have the requisite insulation then any “heat” that you generate may be lost quickly through the “cracks and draughts” that you ignored . Satan is the proverbial opportunist- Was it not Jesus who admonished him thus “Get thee behind me Satan” The Deceiver was not hiding in the bushes or crouched behind a rock- he was out in front; not merely waiting for Jesus to stumble, but arranging a personalised conflagration of temptations and tactics that would have the greatest chance of working on The Son of God. Satan is NOT some harmless pantomime villain, easily OUTED by a boisterous chorus of “he’s behind you”. When he comes at you he will launch a FULL FRONTAL attack; at your weakest point. Whether you believe it or not you are in a War. Not against” flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this world's darkness, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the Heavenly realms," So what are His battle plans: 1) He plays on vulnerabilities: This tactic works best with young people. Many have low self esteem and desperately crave acceptance by their peers- a tattoo here, a bad dye job there, and a complete acquiescence to the slew of popular “causes” that are the tax for admittance to the worldly elite’s “frat house”. 2) He disguises himself as an “Angel of Light”. Did you really think that a being as clever and manipulative as Satan would announce his presence loudly with a tail, a set of Halloween horns and an evil Hillary Clinton cackle. Shame on you. Never underestimate him Thus he will use the tactics of misrepresentation and obfuscation to deceive. A few examples will illustrate this strategem. How often have you heard the term “Social Justice”? Since when does Justice need an adjective? This term is bandied about like confetti at a wedding and used as a “Trojan Horse” to justify everything from Abortion on demand to free hormone blockers for confused children who have been conned into believing in the whole “Trans” myth. 3) While Christ warned us to resist sin, Satan presents Himself as “The rebel WITH a cause”; (albeit your destruction!!!) You can just see him in your mind’s eye, looking like James Dean, smirking as he tells you to ignore those kill joys-“ Get out there, have some fun, live life to the max.” Of course, we all know what eventually happens to those who yield, and indulge their sinful natures- the party eventually comes to an end. As you wander around the relativistic wasteland of excess that you created, you feel an aloneness that is more painful than any hurt you have ever experienced. There’s no one to pick you up now- the cool crowd have moved on.You can’t remember the moment you crossed over from “trendy to tacky”, but the party has moved on without you. Satan doesn’t do sloppy seconds and is searching for his next willing victim. 4) Satan’s biggest weapon is PRIDE : He is a virtuoso at playing this instrument. In fact it is through “PRIDE” that Satan attracts the largest number of sinners to join his hellish orchestra. The apotheosis if this strategy is to not only remove shame from the commission of certain sins, but to have people define themselves by a singular sin and take PRIDE in this self categorisation. The “Pride” celebrations that homosexuals feel obligated to inflict on the rest of us are a case in point. Homosexuality is an offence against God and against nature; but notice how this sin is “packaged”. Those who preach Truth, are cast as hateful bigots. But do not worry, were we not promised that “The world would hate us”? Pride and Disobedience go hand in hand and the story of Samson is particularly apt here. We all know of Samson’s great strength- and God had a very special purpose for him. But he never lived up to his potential. Most people think that Samson's great weakness was his unquenchable desire for Heathen Philistine women- Women who openly mocked God and like many modern heathenists revelled in their carnality. No, this was a symptom of His core flaw which was PRIDE: He was too proud to settle for a Hebrew girlfriend. When he saw a pretty Philistine woman in Timnah, he insisted his parents “get her for me as my wife.” Even though the Scriptures commanded him not to intermarry with women from other nations, Samson considered himself above the rules. He was too proud to listen to the counsel of His parents. When his mother and father tried to persuade him to marry a girl from his own people Samson disregarded their counsel. “A wise son heeds his father’s instruction, but a mocker does not listen to rebuke” (Proverbs 13:1). He was too proud to see that Delilah was his enemy. When she seduced him and begged him to reveal the secret of his strength, Samson was so arrogant he couldn’t imagine any woman deliberately harming him. He thought he was invincible and eventually told her the secret of his strength. If she cut his hair he’d be as weak as a kitten. She did…he was! Not until the very end when he was blinded, chained, and humiliated by the enemy did Samson humble himself before God. Then God’s strength was poured out on him in power and he “killed many more when he died than while he lived” (Judges 16:30). Anyone who desires to utilise God-given talents to the fullest would do well to learn from Samson’s example and make 1 Peter 5:6 a theme verse. “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.” The greatest antibiotic against Pride is HUMILITY. Humble yourself before The Saviour. His Word is The Bread of Life. If you don’t accept the only food that the universe grows then you will starve. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BcNGnRx_QO0
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I grasped a lovely masked procession, And caught things from a horror show… I’d gladly settle for a false impression, If it would last a little longer, though.” ― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe G Sermon: The disciples had been in Jesus presence for almost three years and during that time they had seen miracles,- sight being restored to the blind, the lame walk, the dead being reacquainted with the business of living. Most importantly, they had learned about The Kingdom of Heaven, not from realtor but from The Owner. Jesus knew His time on earth was short, so it was time to give His Disciples the final test- Could they identify Him? As always, Peter tended to speak for all the disciples, so Christ put the question to him in Matthew 16:16 “But what about you?” Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by My Father in heaven.…” There are a couple of things to note here: God reveals certain truths to His elect. Many people complain that when they listen for God’s voice, all they hear is a “Great Silence”. They remind me of people sitting at their computer vainly trying to access the internet without first subscribing to a service provider. Celestial broadband is at your fingertips- and Peter exchanged a dial up connection for broadband in a few simple clicks: 1) He took up the challenge. He left EVERYTHING and followed Jesus 2) He walked, talked and learned at the Saviour’s feet 3) When others were drifting away because Jesus did not fit their concept of a “Messiah”,; Peter stayed, with the words ,"Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life; and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God." John 6:68-69. 4) When he “blew it” during Christ’s Passion, and denied The Saviour out of fear- He begged for forgiveness and atoned for his momentary lack of resolve. 5) He spent his remaining time on earth preaching The Good News of The Kingdom 6) He died a martyr’s death. So where do you “fit” on “The Peter Scale”? You complain of a silence and yet you make no effort to tune in to His Voice . The test of a real Christian is the answer they give to the final exam question “WHO IS JESUS”? Every Christian will invariably say “The Son Of God”; but many do not believe it. Those who do, will seek Him out regularly through The Word he provided us with. If you truly believe Jesus to be the Son of God, then nothing is more important than knowing His message . A message from Our Creator that contains the blueprint for eternal life!!!!!!!!!!!! We have an expression "The scales fell from my eyes".This means that you acquire the discernment to see things as they truly are. For example that beautiful woman you fell in love with that may hide an iceberg of selfishness, petty cruelty and worldliness, on which your ship of hopes,dreams and love would have been dashed into a thousand pieces.(The fall of Samson is a case in point) “God gives us not only the truth but also the ability to believe it; not only the new thing to see but also the new eye to see it with.”In essence, God gives us NEW EYES. These eyes are God's sonar for avoiding the icebergs of life, because they penetrate far more deeply than our worldly vision. An unredeemed person is in essence a hopeless junkie, strung out on the opiates of carnality and selfishness. How can you hope for discernement, unless you check yourself into “rehab” and start a program of detoxification. In essence you must withdraw from the world for a time The world is like a Vegas Casino, all bright Lights and fun- but morning will come and empty pockets and sore heads are all you have to remind you of giving yourself up to the “siren’s melody”. As the toxins of sin and worldliness are expunged – the fugue that has dimmed your mind is replaced by a singular clarity of thought. The obfuscating mists of deception have eventually begun to lift, exposing the quicksand into which you were about to thread. Now you are “Clean and sober”. You will leave the protective cocoon of “rehab” and go out into the world once more. If you return to your old ways, friends and practices; then you are lost. You must “be in the world,but not of it”. You must allow yourself to be transformed by a “Higher Power” We know it as the Holy Spirit. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j1VL-y9JHuI
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