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Posted By disciple

Have you given any thought to what Bilical part of history we are living in?  I believe most people would say we are approaching the end of times as we know them to be.  Some people say that before this happens we must face the rapture.  What do you think?  Will a rapture take place before, during or after the great tribulation era?  In other words will God take the Christians into the heavenly realm before the end of times?

 

You might be wondering what this tribulation period is.  According to the book of Daniel Chapter 9 verse 27 this is a time when "The Antichrist" will set himself up in the Jewish temple in Jerusalem "proclaiming himself to be God" demanding worship.  This will be in the middle of a seven year tribulation period according to the prophet.  This antichrist will become the abomination that cause desolation spoken of in this book.  It will be an era so bad that if God would not cut it short no Christian would survive.

 

I do not know if the Christians will be raptured before this tribulation period but what I do know I would like to share for some heart felt reflection.  The second letter to the Thessalonians Chapter two verses one through nine puts some light on this matter..  The Apostle Paul explains that we do not have to worry or be concerned about Christ coming back.  He goes onto explain that no Christian should be deceived, knowing that Christ will only come after "The Falling Away" happens and the antichrist is revealed.  This is a time when Christians will openly reject God's ways and fall away from His teachings and commands.  This will be a time when the church will start to compromise sin stating that God will understand. 

 

Are we (God's people) already starting to do this?  Many of the main line churches are beginning to axccept immorality as a way of life.  Think about this, there are as many divorces within the church as the secular world.  Churches are accepting homosexuality as a social norm.  They are approving abortion and so many other sins, therefore if the church is accepting this lifestyle then it must be alright with God.  Are we rapidly "Falling Away" from God's ways?  Many Christians think so but does that mean we are close to the ends of time?

 

I cannot answer that for you, only our Father, God, knows but I can tell you that if you see the temple in Jerusalem being rebuilt then these times are rapidly moving forward.  You see once the Jewish temple is rebuilt the antichrist will make himself known and he will claim to be God.  If you are here when this happens then listen for the trumpet of Jesus to sound.  Then and only then will He  come back to reveal the antichrist, consume and destroy him with His breath.  Praise God!

 

In the meantime are you prepared for this event? Are you liviing right or would you be considered apart of the great "Falling Away"?  Do you know Jesus? This is the only guarantee of living in God's eternal kingdom here and forever.  Take time now and ask Jesus into your heart, Amen!

 

Your comments ar appreciated.

 

Pastor Terry


 
Posted By disciple

Wedding preparations

    As the media and the secular world strive to decide the reason for the Christmas holidays and how to greet one another, I find myself immersed in the Christmas story.  The story tells us that in the sixth month of the Jewish calendar a little over two thousand years ago the angel Gabriel was sent by God to the city Nazareth.  His divine order was to find a virgin who was betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David. This virgin’s name was Mary.  So the Christmas story begins.  The angel Gabriel approaches Mary, a virgin, with this greeting.  “Rejoice highly favored one, the Lord God is with you”, Luke1:28!
    What kind of greeting was this anyway.  No hello, or shalom or my name is….., just a simple definitive statement, REJOICE favored one.  The greeting actually startled the young virgin and the angel went on to tell her not to be afraid that God was about to bless her with a child, not just any child, but the Christ child. 
    The drama intensifies knowing that Mary is in the Jewish betrothal process. According to their custom Mary would have been picked as Joseph’s wife by his father, and then Mary would have established a dowry for Joseph to pay.  Once this was done a covenant or marital contract was made between the two of them, and then they went through a traditional  immersion ceremony which was symbolic of a spiritual cleansing allowing them to prepare for the wedding itself. 
    Their betrothal started at this point and was to last about a year.  During this time they lived apart abstaining from any sexual contact.  Joseph was preparing a place for them to live while Mary prepared for the wedding ceremony.  They did not know the date of the wedding.  You see it was up to Joseph’s father to decide and announce when the ceremony would take place.  All of this was going on in Mary’s life when the angel appeared telling her she would conceive as a virgin. 
    God sure does work in mysterious ways doesn’t He.  Would you consider this?  Because of God’s plan to become flesh through the miraculous conception of the virgin Mary, Jesus was born.  As a result, every Christian is preparing for another divine wedding ceremony which is their very own with God.  According to Jewish custom, which was ordained and designed by God, the Lord has chosen the church to be the bride of Christ.  Think about it, Jesus has accepted the dowry for our freedom.  He paid this with His blood on that cross.  We were immersed through our baptism and the acceptance of Christ sacrifice for the forgiveness of our sins. Our betrothal process is under way right now and only the Father God knows the time and the date of the actual wedding ceremony. 
    Where are you in this process?  Are you a part of Jesus’ church?  Have you accepted the covenant between bride and groom.  Jesus is preparing a place for you to live eternally in the heavens above and we are to be preparing for the ceremony itself, which means to be honoring our covenant with God.  I would suggest you get out as many invitations to this wedding as possible so none of your family or loved ones miss it.  In other words introduce them to Jesus.
    With this knowledge, there should be no problem greeting anyone during this time of year. It is simply and joyfully “MERRY CHRISTMAS”.                           Pastor Terry


 
Posted By disciple

    Recently I received an e-mail from a seminary student by the name of Arnold that lives outside of Nairobi Kenya. He asked me if I have the courage to address the problems of Christ’s Church in their Nation, which he feels starts with leadership the next time I visit.
    He is convicted that the Kenyan Christian Church can not be strong again until the
leadership address their part in the prevailing open sin that has been witnessed by the world.  This new e-mail acquaintance spoke of the disaster that engulfed the Country as a result of the elections that took place in Dec., 2007. He wrote that the church was at the center of the skirmishes. He went on to say that some of the church members and leaders actually instigated the carnage. He explained that they were, and are, divided because of ethnic differences that brought out their buried hatred for one another as they struck out with vengeful hearts, maiming, raping, killing, and robbing their rival
tribal neighbors. 

    As a result of this sin , it is his opinion that the church now pretends that all is well but it is not.  They have not healed and some of their remarks betray their continued bitterness, anger and their continued desire for revenge. 

    After reading his remarks, I couldn’t help reflecting on the Christian Church in our own nation wondering when our leadership will search our hearts and repent of our open sin and get back to placing Christ first so that we too can be a vital witness to our Nation and the world.

    You might wonder what our Christian Nation’s sin is? I believe that it is not being willing to stand on the sacred Holy Bible as our guide and path to holy living. Many of our main line church leaders continue to be split on issues like sexuality, abortion, and who should serve in our pulpits today. It’s as though the church does not know what sin is.
    My answer to Arnold’s question is simple, it’s yes. I have the courage to address sin in his nation as well as the sin in our nation. It is prevalent, it is open and many of the leaders and members of Christ’s great church do not want to accept Jesus holy ways. They want to continue to entertain their sin as though God understands and tolerates it.          This is not the case and the church continues to divide as it smothers Christ’ witness. Remember sin is anything that opposes the way of God. This includes immorality, homosexuality, murder, hatred and whatever takes the honor and glory away from Jesus Christ.

    We are all guilty of sin, but the good news is the knowledge that Christ will forgive us and bless us when we repent. Today, seek Jesus’ wonderful grace once again by truly repenting of our wrongdoing, let God renew our hearts and the hearts of His church throughout this world,  AMEN!
    Would you pray this day that a renewal will take place within God’s family so that true revival can sweep our great Nation.

 

Pastor Terry


 
Posted By disciple

“BAD NEWS”

When is the last time you stopped in your local pharmacy to picked up some antibiotics for you or someone in your family?  Were you surprised by the amount of people  that were waiting in line to pick up their medications for all the different illnesses that are going around.  It is as though everyone has something doesn’t it?  One of my wife’s friend’s shared with her that she was in line because her daughter had a head cold as well as pink eye, and she thought she was coming down with it also.   Wow! Your heart has to go out to her and her family.  The doctor certainly gave her some “bad news”
    This year, the flues and sinus infections seem to be harder on the community than other years have been.  I sometimes wonder if God is not allowing the sicknesses to be greater than usual to call us back to him.  Do you think there is anything to this kind of thought?  Lets turn to the Scripture to see if we can find an answer to this question.  In the 1st book of Kings Chapter 14 starting at verse 1 we read about a King of the Jews named Jeroboam who became very sick.  This illness concerned the King so much that he had his wife "disguise herself and go to the prophet Ahijah at Shiloh, to see what God might say through this holy man”.   
    She was to take him a gift of ten loaves of bread, some cakes, and a jar of honey, and ask him what would happen to the Kings son?   The LORD told Ahijah, the prophet, that the King’s wife was coming pretending to be someone else. God instructed the prophet to answer her with the exact message God gave him.  When she entered the prophets house he asked her why she was pretending to be someone else?  Then he told her, "I have bad news for you.  Give your husband, Jeroboam, this message from the LORD, the God of Israel:  “I promoted you from the ranks of the common people and made you ruler over my people Israel.  I ripped the kingdom away from the family of David and gave it to you.  But you have not been like my servant David, who obeyed my commands and followed me with all his heart and always did whatever I wanted him to do.   You have done more evil than all who lived before you.  You have made other gods and have made me furious with your gold calves. And since you have turned your back on me, I will bring disaster on your dynasty and kill all your sons, slave or free alike.  I will burn up your royal dynasty as one burns up trash until it is all gone”. 
    Then Ahijah said to Jeroboam's wife, "Go on home, and when you enter the city, the child will die.  All Israel will mourn for him and bury him.  He is the only member of your family who will have a proper burial, for this child is the only good thing that the LORD, the God of Israel, sees in the entire family of Jeroboam.   And the LORD will raise up a king over Israel who will destroy the family of Jeroboam.   This will happen today, even now!  Then the LORD will shake Israel like a reed whipped about in a stream. He will uproot the people of Israel from this good land that he gave their ancestors and will scatter them beyond the Euphrates River,
for they have angered the LORD by worshiping Asherah.  He will abandon Israel because Jeroboam sinned and made all of Israel sin along with him”.
    Think about the story we just read in this passage.  Our great Nation is one that was founded on God and His ways.  Do you think the Lord God would have the same message to us today?  In other words would God say that He has some  “bad news” for us because of our sin against Him? Lets face it, many of God’s believers have turned their backs on their Creator’s ways, like Jeroboam did, and are worshipping idols and rejecting His ways.  You might wonder what idols we, believers, are worshipping.  Wouldn’t you agree that many of God’s people today have placed their “time” before God.  For example, how many people attend a church.  Statistics share that 65 out of 100 people in this Country do not, therefore how many people are really honoring God’s Sabbath.  We say we are to busy.  We justify this by saying we only have one day off and there is no time for a Sabbath.  God will understand.
    I do not think so, God did not understand the sin of Jeroboam, why would He understand and tolerate our sins?   Will you pray with me today.  Lord, do not give our Nation the same bad news as You gave the King of the Jews.  We, your believers, repent of our sins this very moment and reclaim this Nation as a people that follow the One true God, the God of Abraham, Isaac , Jacob and Moses.  The God that gave us Jesus, the savior of mankind.  Amen.  .  

I PRAY THAT THIS MESSAGE TOUCHED YOUR HEART AND BROUGHT YOU A BIT CLOSER TO GOD.  WE WELCOME YOUR COMMENTS. 
    MAY GOD BLESS YOU ALL THE DAYS OF YOUR LIFE.
PASTOR TERRY COLLINS


 
Posted By disciple

“PUSHING THE LIMITS”

Are you the kind of person that finds yourself always pushing the limits no matter what the consequences are?  Let me give you and example of this. The speed limit is different in many states, for instance, Pennsylvania’s interstate and turnpike limits are 65 mph and the State of West Virginia’s limits are 70 mph.  We always seem to have trouble keeping these, even knowing that if we get stopped for speeding we will have to pay a heavy fine.  How many people do you know that set their cruise control 5 mile an hour over the speed limit feeling that this is a safe speed to travel?  They feel that the State police will not ticket them for this small violation. 
    It seems like people always push the limits in just about everything we do even when we know that we are wrong.  In other words, we are willing to take a chance, aren’t we?   Wouldn’t it be safe to say, that we also push the limits of God.  We seem to always do the things that we know are against the Lord’s will.  Some examples of this would be the way we talk, using language that is definitely un-godly.  We drink an excess of alcohol to the point of drunkenness, or let ourselves become gluttons as a result of the excess food we have been blessed with.  Then there are those that utilize drugs not even considering the social consequences yet alone taking time to wonder how our Creator feels about this.  Its as though we feel that God will understand, the Lord will tolerate our sins, won’t He?  If you think about it, we push our morality way beyond the limits God has set before us in the Commandments.  Many of us think that our moral lifestyle is our own business and it is perfectly alright with God if we are not hurting anyone.  What do you think about this?
    If we use the Bible, for our standard, to address these issues and turn to  the 1st book of  Kings Chapter 13 we will learn that God does not tolerate sin at all.  The Chapter talks about Jeroboam who was the King of Israel and dishonored God knowing that it was wrong.   This King went as far as to build false idols and commanded God’s people to worship them with him.  This was a direct violation to God’s 2nd Commandment.
    In verse 1 we read where God sends one of His prophets from Judah to Bethel to give King Jeroboam a message, as he himself was about to sacrifice to these false gods.   The prophet told him that a child named Josiah would be born into the dynasty of David and this child would sacrifice the priests from the pagan shrines, who come here to burn incense and human bones on you, Jeroboam."  He went on to tell the king that the Lord had promised to give him a sign so he would know that these Words would come about.   The prophet told him that the altar, the king had built would be split apart, and its ashes would be poured out on the ground."  The King became very angry with the man of God for speaking against the altar he sacrificed on, so he pointed to his men and shouted, "Seize that man!" But instantly the king's hand became paralyzed in that position, and he couldn't pull it back.  At the same time a wide crack appeared in the altar, and the ashes poured out, just as the man of God had predicted in his message from the LORD.   The king cried out to the prophet saying, "Please ask the LORD your God, to restore my hand again!" So the man of God prayed to the LORD, and the king's hand became normal again.
    Even after all of this, Jeroboam did not turn from his evil ways.  He continued to choose priests from the rank and file of the people.  Anyone who wanted to, could become a priest for the pagan shrines.  This became a great sin and resulted in the destruction of Jeroboam's kingdom and the death of all his family.
    What’s the point of this passage?  We just read about the judgment of God toward sin.  We have learned that God will not tolerate sin of any kind, so why do we take the chance by pushing the limits of God’s commands in any way?  Without repentance, sin will rob you of heavenly peace and joy and your eternal life.  Remember, we might justify our sins, but God will not, no matter what the situation is. 
    Today, change your ways and repent of your sins.  Yield your Spirit to the Spirit of God and let God mold you according to the Lord’s ways, not the ways of this world, and know that this is the only way to walk in the blessing of the Lord.     Amen.

    I PRAY THAT THIS MESSAGE TOUCHED YOUR HEART AND BROUGHT YOU A BIT CLOSER TO GOD.  WE WELCOME YOUR COMMENTS. 
    MAY GOD BLESS YOU ALL THE DAYS OF YOUR LIFE.

PASTOR TERRY COLLINS