BURNED

What is your pride? Is it a collection, a career, a business, a trophy set, or a reputation? Is it eternity based? If it isn’t it will be burned up with this world, destroyed in the fire of God’s wrath. As the song states, “only what’s done for Christ will last”. So many are intently focused on the world around them. We are drawn to things that swell our pride. However, this world and its works will be burned by fire. 2 Peter 3:10 “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.” Knowing this makes me ask myself often is this “investment” worth my emotions and energy. Am I focusing on something that is going to be destroyed?

Peter says Christ return will be a like a thief, knowing this, are we preparing or are we focusing on the things that will be burned up? What will we have left of our time on earth?

Burning within me,

JOY!

Small thinking

Often evangelicals speak of God’s judgment of America. If God judged Sodom and Gomorrah, it is said, He will surely judge this nation. That is small thinking and dangerous. The truth given in Isaiah 24 is that God will judge the whole earth. He isn’t going to stop at a country He blessed that has in return renounced Him. All of the earth, teetering under the weight of its sin is how Isaiah describes it, will be destroyed. All nations and people left here will experience the wrath of God. The earth will be totally annihilated and replaced. It isn’t a surprise that lawlessness abounds. It is not a shock that people are self-centered (lovers of themselves), lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure. Paul wrote the scene out for Timothy and God preserved it for us to see. What is imperative is that God’s people recognize the times and prepare. Peter repeated in his first letter to the churches be sober. Be sober for the matter of prayer. Be sober and on the alert.

These are exciting days. The Lord’s return is imminent. No event is left to take place, according to the prophecies He has given us, in order for Jesus to rapture His bride. Although there are frightening happenings every day, the believer can be fully confident that God foresaw it all, gave us warning and has it all under control. Until He makes all things new, may the church be faithful. Judgment is coming, however, it involves much more than the USA.

Burning within me,

JOY!

Judgment on the Earth

Isaiah

24 Behold, the Lord lays the earth waste, devastates it, distorts its surface and scatters its inhabitants. 2 And the people will be like the priest, the servant like his master, the maid like her mistress, the buyer like the seller, the lender like the borrower, the creditor like the debtor. 3 The earth will be completely laid waste and completely despoiled, for the Lord has spoken this word. 4 The earth mourns and withers, the world fades and withers, the exalted of the people of the earth fade away. 5 The earth is also polluted [a]by its inhabitants, for they transgressed laws, violated statutes, broke the everlasting covenant. 6 Therefore, a curse devours the earth, and those who live in it are held guilty. Therefore, the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men are left.

7 The new wine mourns,The vine decays, All the merry-hearted sigh.
 8 The gaiety of tambourines ceases,
The noise of revelers stops,
The gaiety of the harp ceases.
9 They do not drink wine with song;
Strong drink is bitter to those who drink it.
 10 The city of chaos is broken down;
Every house is shut up so that none may enter.
11 There is an outcry in the streets concerning the wine;
All joy [b]turns to gloom.
The gaiety of the earth is banished.
12 Desolation is left in the city
And the gate is battered to ruins.
13 For thus it will be in the midst of the earth among the peoples,
As the [c]shaking of an olive tree,
As the gleanings when the grape harvest is over.
 14 They raise their voices, they shout for joy;
They cry out from the [d]west concerning the majesty of the Lord.
 15 Therefore glorify the Lord in the [e]east,
The name of the Lord, the God of Israel,
In the [f]coastlands of the sea.
16 From the ends of the earth we hear songs, “Glory to the Righteous One,”
B
ut I say, “[g]Woe to me! [h]Woe to me! Alas for me!
The treacherous deal treacherously,
And the treacherous deal very treacherously.”
17 Terror and pit and snare
[i]Confront you, O inhabitant of the earth.
18 Then it will be that he who flees the [j]report of disaster will fall into the pit,
And he who [k]climbs out of the pit will be caught in the snare;
For the windows [l]above are opened, and the foundations of the earth shake.
19 The earth is broken asunder,
The earth is split through,
The earth is shaken violently.
20 The earth reels to and fro like a drunkard
And it totters like a [m]shack,
For its transgression is heavy upon it,
And it will fall, never to rise again.
21 So it will happen in that day,
That the Lord will punish the host of [n]heaven on high,
And the kings of the earth on earth.
2
2 They will be gathered together
L
ike prisoners in the [o]dungeon,
And will be confined in prison;
And after many days they will be punished.
23 Then the moon will be abashed and the sun ashamed,
For the Lord of hosts will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem,
And His glory will be before His elders.

 

 

Fare thee well

Few sang of our great home going as the early American slaves. The spirituals as they are called, spoke of a deep longing for relief from earth’s troubles, trials and persecution as well as a longing for God’s judgment to fall. Revelation speaks of the souls under the altar asking how long oh Lord, how long before you vindicate us. And He will. As this old song so wisely states, when the last soul has been converted, God’s wrath will fall on this fallen world and the persecuted and oppressed will see God’s vengeance on cruel men. Are you getting ready for the coming of the judgment? I long to sing in that day, “fare thee well”!

 

I’m gonna tell you ’bout the coming of the judgment

Fare thee well, fare thee well

I’m gonna tell you ’bout the coming of the judgment

Fare thee well, fare thee well

There’s a better day a coming, fare thee well, fare thee well

Yes there’s a better day a coming, fare thee well, fare thee well

In that great gettin’ up morning, fare thee well, fare thee well

In that great gettin’ up morning, fare thee well, fare thee well

In that great gettin’ up morning, fare thee well, fare thee well

In that great gettin’ up morning, fare thee well, fare thee well

Oh preacher fold your bible, fare thee well, fare thee well

Oh preacher fold your bible, fare thee well, fare thee well

For the last souls converted, fare thee well, fare thee well

Yes for the last souls converted, fare thee well, fare thee well

Blow your trumpet Gabriel, fare thee well, fare thee well

Blow your trumpet Gabriel, fare thee well, fare thee well

Lord, how loud shall I blow it, fare thee well, fare thee well

Blow it right and calm and easy, fare thee well, fare thee well

Do not ‘larm all my people, fare thee well, fare thee well

Tell them all come to the judgment, fare thee well, fare thee well

Then you see that fork of lightening, fare thee well, fare thee well

Then you hear that rumbling thunder, fare thee well, fare thee well

Then you see dem stars a falling, fare thee well, fare thee well

Then you see the world on fire, fare thee well, fare thee well

Then you see dem sinners rising, fare thee well, fare thee well

See ’em marching home for heaven, fare thee well, fare thee well

Farewell poor sinners, fare thee well, fare thee well

Farewell poor sinners, fare thee well, fare thee well

http://www.lyricsmania.com

Burning within me,

JOY!

What will they hear?

If our lost friends join us in church this Sunday, what will they hear? Will they be encouraged by the message that God loves them and has a plan for their life? Will they hear music that proclaims their great value and appeals to their style preference? Will church be an experience they enjoy and make them feel better about their state in life? Is it a pacifier of sorts?

It is absolutely true that God loves each and every one of His creations. He does have a plan not for just individual lives but the whole world and all of history and time. People are made in the image of God and are of great worth to Him. Musical style is not worth argument. The purpose is to worship the King. The problem lies in whether or not we are preparing souls to meet a Holy God on judgment day.

The Israelites did not want to hear the prophets speak of judgment. They wanted to hear of God’s great faithfulness and the special place the descendants of Jacob held in this world. When Isaiah and Jeremiah spoke of impending judgment and exile, the people sought to silence them. The prophets who spoke of blessings and the breaking of bondage were the preachers of choice. But judgment was coming and exiled they were. Some of what was spoken by the prophets of the Old Testament has taken place, some has partially been fulfilled and the most severe of condemnation has yet to occur. People need to know! Matthew 24 speaks of birth pains increasing in an intensity and frequency. The world is experiencing this. Is the church giving warning or rather are we speakers the people want to hear as in the Old Testament days of Isaiah and Jeremiah?

Pray saints that we are not false prophets when the world desperately needs to hear of what will take place in the last days. Isaiah tells how the earth will be laid waste, devastated. (Isaiah 24:1) It will fall, never to rise again. (Isaiah 6:20) This has not taken place yet. God’s people need to wisely prepare the unknowing how to be prepared to escape the day of God’s wrath. Once they are aware of that, the rest of what we share is encouragement and hope. Without salvation, all our words of comfort are only pacifiers keeping the world from crying out to the Savior.

Burning within me,

JOY!

What the church needs most today

Dr. Michael Youssef stated what we most need today is discernment. Isaiah warns of God’s reaction to a people lacking discernment.

Isaiah 27:11 For they are not a people of discernment, therefore their Maker will not have compassion on them and their creator will not be gracious to them.

Seek Him.

Burning within me,

JOY!

“Stupid is letting the world dictate how you live.” –Kay Arthur

Take pictures – no one will believe this

General Dwight Eisenhower feared people would deny the Holocaust ever happened. He ordered that pictures be taken fearing no one would believe what he saw. He also had people from neighboring towns, as well as soldiers, tour the torturous extermination facilities. It is estimated 11 million died including 6 million Jews, approximately 1/3 of the Jewish population of the time. On the internet there are websites devoted to the memory of the victims as well as websites that deny the horror ever took place. A current world leader, who denies the holocaust happened, also claims he will wipe the Jewish nation off the map.

The Bible tells us God’s people (the Jews) will be persecuted until the day of the Lord. It states in the end times all nations will turn against Israel. Knowing this fact gives further validity to the historical accounts of the atrocities of the World War that ended so many lives, especially of the race Hitler so hated.  This  people group is set apart by God.

The Bible’s prophecies of this remnant as it is called (one estimate says 1% of the world’s population) bears out. If one needs proof of the authenticity of the Word of God, study Jewish history. This fledgling nation survives yet still.

Burning within me,

JOY!

How long had she been there?

Anna spent her days at the temple, looking for Messiah. If she had children you would think she would have been with them instead of staying at the temple, serving night and day with fasting and prayer. Luke says she was well advanced in years and had spent only seven years with her husband before being widowed. How long had she been there? I am sure the wait didn’t compare with the reward. She saw HIM. She recognized Him. She gave thanks to God and continued to speak of Him to all those who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem. (Luke 2:36-38) What a life!

Are you looking expecting to see Him? I am anticipating and longing for His return. I know He is going to make everything right; He will make all things new. It is my prayer that He would come quickly. What about you? Are you looking? Don’t miss Him.

Burning within me,

JOY!

Because I believe He is coming soon

Because I believe He is coming soon, my prayer for us is to hold fast to His Word and stand on His promises.

1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

Our goal is an eternal one; like those who run physical races here on earth, we need to train diligently. The race we run is arduous. We cannot afford to neglect the disciplines of prayer and study of the Word. The next leg of the race I fear becomes a steep incline.

Burning within me,

JOY!

Need more sleep?

“Get up, Joy, let Me minister to you.” I sense His voice.

Are you tired? Do you feel you need more sleep?

Jesus spent all night in prayer vigils. He separated Himself from the disciples to go to quiet places to commune with His Father. He needed to be refreshed and prepared for the daily pressing of individuals into His life. So do I. I need the Word to remind me of truth and focus my perspective on eternity. It is a daily struggle to put Christ first and not to fall for the deception thrown at me from all directions.

Waking in the morning, before the rush of dressing and packing bags for a long day away from home, is imperative for peace in my life. It is a must for wisdom and discernment. Communion with My Father reminds me today was planned ahead of time by Him, and He will guide me. I read again He is my strength and my shield. I lay out the worries that fought to keep me from sleeping. I study to prepare for the rapidly changing times I see in the news and in the people around me. I again confess He is Lord.

Make no mistake, the enemy will attack in the coming day. He is calculated and preparing to waylay God’s children. He prepares; we must too. The birth pains predicting Jesus’ return are coming closer and closer together. Seek Him to be prepared, not sleeping and naked.

Burning within me,

JOY!

Luke 5:16 (NIV) But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.

Luke 6:12 (NIV) One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God.

Psalm 139:16 (NIV) Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

Revelation 16:15 (NIV) “Look, I come like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake and remains clothed, so as not to go naked and be shamefully exposed.”

Still pure

The word of God says what it said in the beginning. No historian has revised it. No news hound has sensationalized it. No atheist has added explanation for the miracles contained within. It is still pure and trustworthy when little around us is. How do I know? People wouldn’t revile against it so much if they had been allowed to change it to their liking. Then, maybe again, they would because the eye is never satisfied.

Find hope, comfort and truth in the Word of God alone. The arm of flesh, man who is full of deceit, will mislead you, fail you and point you to destruction. Go to a trustworthy source for truth.

Burning within me,

JOY!

Isaiah 40:8

The grass withers, the flower fades,

But the word of our God stands forever.

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