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Showing posts from August, 2010

IN CHAINS FOR CHRIST

IN CHAINS FOR CHRIST A. Brother ©2010 Narrowgate Publishing
“Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel.” Phil. 1:12
What had happened to Paul?He had been confined in prison for his subversive activities.Accused of spreading dissension and political turmoil, or impacting the livelihoods of local merchants and businessmen, or teaching people to worship God rather than the works of their hands, or disrupting the religious lives of the self-righteous religious people.Thrown in prison for the crime of preaching Christ, he had been accused, convicted, sentenced.He was in chains now, literally.
Paul was in prison a number of times, but it certainly could not have been routine for him.It was uncomfortable, dirty, and considered unworthy of good men.Common criminals surrounded him, and his jailers would have been, in the main, anything but kind and helpful men.This was a dank, smelly, sour, unwashed, filthy prison before the days of prison …

CHRIST IN YOU. YOU IN CHRIST.

"To the holy and faithful brothers in Christ at Colosse..." (Col. 1:2)


"I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness--the mystery...that is now disclosed to the saints...which is Christ in you, the hope of glory."  (Col. 1:25-27)


In Christ.  This phrase is the key to all knowledge, wisdom and life.  Christ in you.  This phrase sums up the whole message of the gospel.  These are the truths upon which the entire span of eternity, and the entire universe hinge.  The door of truth swings on these massive, smooth, beautifully and perfectly forged hinges, and can be swung open by a single touch of the weakest, tiniest hand.


If we come as children to Christ, as He commands we do (Matt. 19:14 et.al.), then we can, with the feeblest of cries, call the entire power of God to our disposal in Christ.  He is ready and willing to uphold us in danger, to strengthen us in turmoil, to fill us with His peace in the worst of c…

AYN RAND OR CHRIST: EXPOSING DECEPTION

AYN RAND OR CHRIST? A. Brother ©2010 Narrowgate Publishing

“So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” 1 Cor. 10:31
“Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others.” 1 Cor. 10:24
“Man is an end to himself.” Ayn Rand

Do we understand the depth of separation from the Truth that has taken place in our modern societies over the past century?From my observation most of us who claim Christ are at least partially swimming in the Sea of Self that has engulfed our land.This flood of man-worship has infected nearly all we do and believe, and must be called out for what it is: a tool of Satan to keep men, women and children focused on worldly foolishness, instead of on Christ and His Kingdom.
Ayn Rand lived during nearly the entire span of the 20th century, and was a voice of so-called “reason”, “individualism” and “objectivism” that influenced generations of Americans.Posthumously, her Ayn Rand Institute carries on her ideas and philosophies, seeking to inst…

WHERE HAVE CONFESSION AND REPENTANCE GONE?

CONFESSION AND REPENTANCE A. Brother ©2010 Narrowgate Publishing


“If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make Him out to be a liar and His Word has no place in our lives.” 1 John 1:8-10
“For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against You, You only have I sinned and done what is evil in Your sight… Surely You desire truth in the inward parts…” Psalm 51:3,4,6
Confession is not just good for the soul, as the old saying goes, it is essential at all times for true communion with God.Only men and women who have hearts deeply repentant for their sinfulness can know the depths of God’s love. Jesus said this about the fruit of confession and repentance:
“Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven---for she loved much. But he who has been forgiven little loves little.” Luke 7:47
The w…

IN REPLY: IS ANY MAN PREDESTINED TO EVIL AND SIN?

NOTE:  There is much misunderstanding of Scripture on the matter of "predestination" and "God's Sovereignty" over men.  I loved this question that was put to me by a brother in Christ.  Here is his question, and my answer.


Dear A. Brother:


I have a friend that says we are "elected" by God and that some are not. I think his examples are Pharoah and Hitler. I say that God has said we have free will and that all are "elected" through their own choice, whether that is choices made or presently make, he says no, that from birth these individuals were put here for the purposes they lived and exemplify, he will reference the story of the potter and the clay relentlessly. My question is this, is he is right, and if so is there freewill? Personally I think that those individuals made choices that led them to be used by God to glorifying him. I think that if Hitler turned to God and chose Jesus then God would have accepted him with open arms. Believe me…

DONKEYS BEHAVING BADLY

DONKEYS BEHAVING BADLY A. Brother ©2010 Narrowgate Publishing
TEXT:NUMBERS 22:1-35
This is for all brothers and sisters who know the calling of the Lord to speak for Him;those who are watchmen, prophets, teachers, and shepherds in Christ, and who seek Him, and work to carry out His Word faithfully by His power, and for His glory.
Don’t blame the donkey.I leave it to you to read this account God gives us of a man God called.This man, Balaam, was on his God-given mission to fulfill this clear calling.He encountered absolutely strange and unexplainable delays because of his donkey, his only mode of transportation.Balaam, understandably, was angry and frustrated over the behavior of his normally reliable highway conveyance.He beat the donkey, raged against the donkey, and tried to make the donkey conform to Balaam’s timetables and plans.
The donkey would not cooperate.Balaam was being kept from his God-appointed calling, and this stupid animal was the cause.The prophet tried three times to mak…

IN MOURNING FOR THE PEOPLE OF GOD

This morning I have been praying, and reading prayer requests sent out from streetscape ministries in Houston, Texas.  This ministry helps the homeless.

What strikes me is the desperate plight of God's people.  The homeless we understand.  They are clearly in trouble.  No place to sleep, begging for food and money, they are poor in the poorest sense.  And often that way because of deep spiritual and emotional problems.

But the people of God are a tragedy all to themselves.  And unrecognized.  I mourn this morning for the cries and heartache of the thousands upon thousands in the churches, or formerly from the churches.  Hurting, angry, confused, sad, lonely, afflicted, disappointed, and wondering where the people of God are when they need them.

Often they have experienced loss and tragedy, personal sickness, financial chaos, or constant attacks from other people.  Unfortunately, many of these attacks are from people who claim to know God.  Having experienced these attacks, and kn…

TOGETHER

TOGETHER A. Brother ©2010 Narrowgate Publishing

“And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and high and long and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” Eph. 3:17-19
“In Him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in Him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by His Spirit.” Eph. 2:21,22
“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.” Acts 2:1
“All the believers were together and had everything in common.” Acts 2:44
How can we understand the “togetherness” depicted here in the Scriptures if we do not understand the meaning of the word?
In our modern, affluent, tech-driven societies, we have lost the ability to be “together.”We have developed the art and science of living lives of individuality.In fact, individual fulf…

INTO THE DEPTHS TO FIND POWER

NOTE:  I wrote earlier in several teachings what God is showing me about going through the cross, and getting through that narrow gate with Christ.  After the cross, Austin-Sparks says here, “all the fullness of divine power was released upon the world”.  This is what I’m talking about.  We must be brought into this Oneness with Christ by revelation, by the eyes of our understanding being enlightened, as Paul says, and it comes only through the Cross, and through the power of God resident in us in Christ.  Great insight here.
INTO THE DEPTHS TO FIND POWER T. AUSTIN-SPARKS
“The people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits.” Daniel 11:32
After the Cross, all the fullness of the Divine power was released upon the world through those who had been brought into absolute oneness with the Lord by that Cross. That is the peculiar kind of knowledge which means the release of such forces and such powers upon the world situation as are unknown by the great world systems.
Fir…

NAKED AS THE DAY WE WERE BORN

NAKED AS THE DAY WE WERE BORN A. Brother ©2010 Narrowgate Publishing
“For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.” Col. 3:3
When the westward movement of men and families was in full swing in the United States, wagon trains loaded with people, possessions, and precious keepsakes trundled across the plains and mountains.These people, in essence, were pioneers, looking for a new start, a new life, and huge change.
What they found was hardship beyond their dreams, and the cost of this new life was often death to all they held dear.The evidence of their struggle was strewn across the grassy landscape.The way was so hard they had to abandon furniture, clothes, baggage of all kinds.Heirlooms were the last to go, but just before the final ascent through the western mountains, whole meadows were piled with the leftovers of their old lives, heaps of things that were now useless to them.They had found that the price of new life was the death of the old one.
In the spiritual realm, thi…