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Posts tagged ‘Church’



Created by Faith (Photo by Pastor Davis)

Created by Faith (Photo by Pastor Davis)

Go after a life of love as if your life depended on it—because it does. Give yourselves to the gifts God gives you. Most of all, try to proclaim his truth everyday. If you praise him in the private language of tongues, God understands you but no one else does, for you are sharing intimacies just between you and him. But when you proclaim his truth in everyday speech, you’re letting others in on the truth so that they can grow and be strong and experience his presence with you.

The one who prays using a private prayer language” certainly gets a lot out of it, but proclaiming God’s truth to the church in its common language brings the whole church into growth and strength. I want all of you to develop intimacies with God in prayer, but please don’t stop with that. Go on and proclaim his clear truth to others. It’s more important that everyone have access to the knowledge and love of God in language everyone understands than that you go off and cultivate God’s presence in a mysterious prayer language—unless, of course, there is someone who can interpret what you are saying for the benefit of all.

Think, friends: If I come to you and all I do is pray privately to God in a way only he can understand, what are you going to get out of that? If I don’t address you plainly with some insight or truth or proclamation or teaching, what help am I to you? If musical instruments—flutes, say, or harps—aren’t played so that each note is distinct and in tune, how will anyone be able to catch the melody and enjoy the music? If the trumpet call can’t be distinguished, will anyone show up for the battle?

So if you speak in a way no one can understand, what’s the point of opening your mouth? There are many languages in the world and they all mean something to someone. But if I don’t understand the language, it’s not going to do me much good. It’s no different with you. Since you’re so eager to participate in what God is doing, why don’t you concentrate on doing what helps everyone in the church?

So, when you pray in your private prayer language, don’t hoard the experience for yourself. Pray for the insight and ability to bring others into that intimacy. If I pray in tongues, my spirit prays but my mind lies fallow, and all that intelligence is wasted. So what’s the solution? The answer is simple enough. Do both. I should be spiritually free and expressive as I pray, but I should also be thoughtful and mindful as I pray. I should sing with my spirit, and sing with my mind. If you give a blessing using your private prayer language, which no one else understands, how can some outsider who has just shown up and has no idea what’s going on know when to say Amen“? Your blessing might be beautiful, but you have very effectively cut that person out of it.

I’m grateful to God for the gift of praying in tongues that he gives us for praising him, which leads to wonderful intimacies we enjoy with him. I enter into this as much or more than any of you. But when I’m in a church assembled for worship, I’d rather say five words that everyone can understand and learn from than say ten thousand that sound to others like gibberish.

Therefore, I say to each of you, go on and proclaim God’s clear truth to others everyday, and allow everyone to have complete access to the love and knowledge of God.

Now may God’s love, truth and peace, rest and abide in each of you, in Jesus name, AMEN!

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In part one of this four part series we talked about the role parents play in raising loving and respectable children.  We asked you to share your thoughts on what you would do to raise your children up in the right way that would make them a more responsible and productive adult in this society.  Several of you responded and I will share a couple of your response here.

One of our own Ministers, Sister Shirley wrote, “What we as adults, leaders, and parents must understand is that children are a gift from God, one to be cherished. They are our future leaders, doctors, teachers, etc., therefore our responsibility should be to teach and guide them now or pay the price in the future. Life is about choice and chance.”  

When I was a youth living in a small town, everyone knew everyone and no one was ever afraid to correct us if they saw us doing something wrong.  Today, if you correct a child when you see them doing wrong, you will have the parents knocking at your door for chastising their child.  You might even have the police come calling on you, if you are lucky that the child has not shot and killed you.  There is something badly wrong with this picture, but it is a true one today.

I can recall a time when I was in a vacation bible school; my wife at the time was teaching a Bible Study class with one of our Associate Ministers.  I had been called outside to break up a disturbance.  When I came back into the church, this young man’s sister was standing in the middle of the church cursing my wife and the pastor out using all sorts of foul language.  I escorted her outside and attempted to talk with her to no avail.  She left and within a few minutes, just after things had gotten back to normal within the church class, the doors swung open with a loud bang and a loud voice began to roar from the rear of the church.  It was the mother of the two teenagers yelling and screaming at me with language worst than her children had used, telling me what she was going to do to me if I ever put my hands on her children again.

Now this mother was the chairman of the usher board within the church.  Not only were her children wrong, but she was wrong for the way she handled the situation.  Her children went home and lied to her about what had taken place at the church.  She was willing to believe the worst from them, and instead of coming to find out what was going on, she came in accusing me and others of striking her children when no such thing had taken place.  If this had happened when I was a youth, I would have gotten my butt whipped before I left the church, then I would have been taken home to my parents and they would have whipped my butt again.  But you see, in today’s political correctness society, there are too many parents who refuse to correct their own children and will not allow anyone in the churches, schools or the community to do so.  Therefore, the youth’s attitude is you are not my parents and you can’t tell me what to do.  This is a sad commentary for our youth and it is a factor that is contributing to the youth violence in America today.

Another part of this problem of correcting children is some of the abuse that some parents have perpetuated upon their children that has caused the government to get more involved in our daily lives.  We parents are responsible for our children and we must shoulder that responsibility with love, understanding and patience.  Children can be a problem.  There is much peer pressure on them.  They want to fit in with their friends, therefore as a parent, we must try to understand their changing life style, and the growth hormones as they experienced adulthood.  We must treat them with respect, try and understand that they too do have problems and they may not always share those problems with us.  But we must always be willing to put our arms around them and daily tell them that we love them, even though we may not be having the kind of conversation we would like to have with them.  But I tell you that there is power in love.  When our youth can feel within themselves that they are loved, it brings a much different kind of respect from them.

Another one of our readers wrote and shared her story with us as to how she as a single parent is raising her daughter and preparing her for adulthood and to become a creative and productive member of this society.  Here is what she had to say; “I am trying to be here during my daughter’s childhood and teen years. I have chosen to sacrifice a more materialistic living in favor of being a stay at home mom. I’m available to my child when she comes home from school and stay available until she’s in bed at night. I find this helps immensely in our communication and the trust being built between us. We still have immense challenges, as I’m a single mom, but I’m so glad I made the decision to put her before materialism in our lives.”  (The Warrioress  Life of a female Blogger)  We encourage you to go by and read her writings.  You can reach her by clicking on this link:  http://lifeofafemalebiblewarrior.wordpress.com/

We also encourage you to share your story with us and we will include it in Part 3 of this series which we will post next week on Tuesday June 25, 2013.  Your story just might be the one that helps to encourage another parent to become a better parent or perhaps improve their parenting skills and even save a child’s life.








Our message today is a direct response to one of our readers and fellow bloggers that was posted on an article written a few days ago title:  “YOU ARE CREATED WITH POWER AND FOR A REASON!” You can go back and read the article and all the comments by clicking on this link: http://wp.me/pf75v-2F8/   

After Diana, My Dear Sister in Christ proposed this question to us; “When was the last time you had to remedy a situation with a weak link, in your family or Church? [Refresher....because you talk with so many....I wrote the Question of Human Suffering?”

 I told her that rather than just responding to her question with a short note, I would write an article title: “FAITH IN HUMAN SUFFERNG WILL PROVIDE HEALING TO THE HUMAN BODY!” The title came to me instantly while reading and meditating on her question, I said My God, My God how marvelous you really are, thank you, thank you. You are truly my provider, and you will provide to all of us all we need at the very moment and time we need it.



Let me begin by adding a few points to the first part of her question.  Because our employer is Jesus Christ and our Mission is to make Disciples, daily we are confronted with situations where people have fallen by the way side and find it difficult to pick themselves up and turn their lives around.  They have become one of the weak links in the Church, the Community as well as their family, and our job is to help restore them back to the right relationship with Jesus Christ.

Recently I met a man who was living in a homeless shelter; he was married with three young children.  He had a Master Degree in Business, and had worked for several years in the automotive industry.  His company was downsized and he lost his job, his home and now he was about to lose what matter to him the most, and that was his wife and young children.  This man had become the weak link in his family, as well as his community, and was having a very difficult time with all that was happening to him.  His health was failing and his spirit was broken.  What he needed most was Jesus and at that very moment he could not see it.  At this point, my job is to help restore him back to the right relationship with Jesus, by encouraging him to walk by faith and not by sight.  Sometimes God has to break us in order to make us.

In analysis of faith, suffering, healing and the human body we are able to relate to spirituality in combination with mortal (flesh). Combining these elements we bring into subjection mind over matter, our thought process, the passageway to wholeness.

The physical body is just that, physical, subject to the elements that surrounds it in its natural state.  The spirit that inhabits the human body is God given, he has breathed his breath into it; therefore, suffering develops faith within human suffering. Faith that is centered and focused brings healing and health to the physical body, it serves as a stimulus to the cells, and tissue that makes up the human entity of who we really are. You can speak to the cells in your body, command them to heal, and they will obey your command.

We often think of life here on this earth as all that there is and we hesitate to venture into the unknown simply because we have not allowed the process of thought to lead us. Even when we experience an altered state in our health, we focus on what is happening within the physical body rather than the spiritual where healing is plentiful. Without faith we are not able to comprehend the awesome power of God in reality.

If we think for a moment and consider the teachings of Jesus (his words are truth) we will understand how he has given the authority and power to his followers, remember what he said to his disciples, “Go, preach, heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils, freely you have received, freely give” (Matthew 10:5-8).  When his “hour” had come, Jesus prayed to his Father for his followers, “The glory which you gave me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one. I in them, and you in me, so that they may be made perfect in one,” His teaching of Love is an avenue for healing. Consider the infirm woman talked about in scripture (Luke 13:10-17) bound by the Devil for eighteen years, unable to walk straight. She allowed her past to rob her of her strength and vitality, her will to move forward in life. This lady had to struggle to get to Jesus and when she made contact she was set free of her infirmity. There will come moments in life when we must release things and people in order to be free.

Christ suffered for us in the flesh; we are to arm ourselves with the same mind toward one another and life. 1Peter 4:12-13 reminds us this way, “beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trials which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you, but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s suffering, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.” We are freely given, wisdom, knowledge, strength and understanding, it’s up to us to make the choice.

Now I encourage each one of you, when you talk the talk and say that you have “FAITH,” don’t let it be just another word you say to make others believe you truly do know what you are talking about, learn to walk the walk and know without an ounce of doubt that, “FAITH IN HUMAN SUFFERING WILL PROVIDE HEALING TO THE HUMAN BODY!”

Let me encourage you to go and visit our fellow blogger’s blog that inspired us to write this article, you can contact her at:


We thank each of you for reading and studying with us daily.  You are truly a disciple of Jesus Christ and we have Ministered this lesson to you today from a position of Peace, Power, Purpose and Prosperity.






Today is a brand new day, and the beginning of a brand new week.  You attended the Church of your choice and you were fed the spiritual bread of life by your Pastors that spoke the word of truth and sent you back out into the world to serve that others may be saved from their sins and torment of the old devil.  But now you are standing at the gate being falsely accused of crimes against humanity that have no barreling on your life.  And you ask WHY?  Why me, I am a child of God, I am His Servant, I have not done any of those things that others are accusing me of?  I have been minding my own business and doing what has been commanded of me.  But still I stand falsely accused of wrong doing, when I am out and about doing the will of God.

Hostile accusers appear out of nowhere; they stand up and badger me. They pay me back misery for mercy, leaving my soul empty. When they were sick, I dressed in black; instead of eating, I prayed. My prayers were like lead in my gut like I’d lost my best friend, my brother. I paced, distraught as a motherless child, hunched and heavyhearted. But when I was down they threw a party! All the nameless riffraff of the town came chanting insults about me. Like barbarians desecrating a shrine, they destroyed my reputation.  God, how long are you going to stand there doing nothing? Save me from their brutalities; everything I’ve got is being thrown to the lions. I will give you full credit when everyone gathers for worship; when the people turn out in force I will say my Hallelujahs.

 Don’t let these liars, my enemies, have a party at my expense. Those who hate me for no reason,

winking and rolling their eyes, No good is going to come from that crowd; They spend all their time cooking up gossip against those who mind their own business.

They open their mouths in ugly grins, Mocking, “Ha-ha, ha-ha, thought you’d get away with it?
We’ve caught you hands down!” Don’t you see what they’re doing, God? You’re not going to let them get by with it, are you? Not going to walk off without doing something, are you?

Please get up—wake up! Tend to my case. My God, my Lord—my life is on the line. Do what you think is right, God, my God, but don’t make me pay for their good time. Don’t let them say to themselves, “Ha-ha, we got what we wanted.” Don’t let them say, “We’ve chewed him up and spit him out.” Let those who are being hilarious at my expense be made to look ridiculous. Make them wear donkey’s ears; Pin them with the donkey’s tail, who made themselves so high and mighty!

But those who want the best for me, Let them have the last word—a glad shout!— and say, over and over and over, “God is great—everything works together for good for his servant.” I’ll tell the world how great and good you are, I’ll shout Hallelujah all day, every day. (Psalm 35:11-28 MSG)

BE ENCOURAGED, do not allow the enemy to still your joy, keep your hands in Gods’ hand and allow Him to fight your battles.  Stay focus on the prize, and always MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS!



The Holy Seapulchre Church, Jerusalem. Catholi...

The Holy Seapulchre Church, Jerusalem. Catholic Holy Mass on Maundy Thursday / Crkva Svetoga groba u Jeruzalemu. Katolička sveta misa na Veliki četvrtak. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Tomorrow we will begin to celebrate Maundy Thursday together.  Maundy Thursday is also called Holy Thursday; it is the beginning of the three day celebration of EASTER the most important time in the year for Christians. This period (‘The Triduum‘) is one big celebration, remembering the last supper, the crucifixion and the death of Jesus, and the Resurrection to new life.

Maundy Thursday commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus Christ with the Apostles.  It is the day before Good Friday, and it is the lesser known days of the Christian calendar.  On this day, Christians remember the Last Supper. During the meal Jesus took bread and wine and shared them with his disciples.

Christians from around the world will continue to share bread and wine as part of their worship services in their individual local church.  We share this message with you in order to help you prepare for your day of celebration.  When we all join together in these moments of great celebration, it enables us to remember just how much we truly are one in Christ.  He gave His life that we may live, love and share with each other.  Know that on this day, you are truly BLESSED and HIGHLY FAVORED, because GOD said you were.

Let me remind you and encourage you to think globally and work locally, reaching out to your brothers and sisters and giving of yourself that others may live, lifting up our Holy Hands towards heaven in prayer.  I remain your brother in JESUS CHRIST, PASTOR DAVIS/MASTER TEACHER!





 On the first of the Days of Unleavened Bread, the day they prepare the Passover sacrifice, his disciples asked him, “Where do you want us to go and make preparations so you can eat the Passover meal?”

He directed two of his disciples, “Go into the city. A man carrying a water jug will meet you. Follow him. Ask the owner of whichever house he enters, ‘The Teacher wants to know, Where is my guest room where I can eat the Passover meal with my disciples?’ He will show you a spacious second-story room, swept and ready. Prepare for us there.”

The disciples left, came to the city, found everything just as he had told them, and prepared the Passover meal.

After sunset he came with the Twelve. As they were at the supper table eating, Jesus said, “I have something hard but important to say to you: One of you is going to hand me over to the conspirators, one who at this moment is eating with me.”

Stunned, they started asking, one after another, “It isn’t me, is it?”

 He said, “It’s one of the Twelve, one who eats with me out of the same bowl. In one sense, it turns out that the Son of Man is entering into a way of treachery well-marked by the Scriptures—no surprises here. In another sense, the man who turns him in, turns traitor to the Son of Man—better never to have been born than do this!”

“This Is My Body”

In the course of their meal, having taken and blessed the bread, he broke it and gave it to them. Then he said,

Take, this is my body.

Taking the chalice, he gave it to them, thanking God, and they all drank from it. He said,

This is my blood,
God’s new covenant,
Poured out for many people.

 “I’ll not be drinking wine again until the new day when I drink it in the kingdom of God.”

They sang a hymn and then went directly to Mount Olives(Mark 14:12-26 MSG)




Now listen to how the Scriptures teach us on this subject matter; it says, “But godliness with contentment is great gain, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world.  But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content.  But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction, (1 Timothy 6:6-9)!”  Now pause your thoughts right here for a moment and click on this video for our introductory summary of what this lesson is about and we will meet you on the other side.

Our lesson today is taken from Paul’s letter that he wrote to his son Timothy, known as the book of 1st Timothy.  In this closing section of his instructional letter, Paul returned to discussing how Timothy should handle the false teachers.  Paul main concern was not about the form of the instruction they were providing to the people, but that the false teachers disagreed with what Jesus Christ had taught and demonstrated.  They erred in contradicting and discounting Jesus.

Therefore, Paul told them that false teaching is ungodly teaching; it cannot result in a godly life.  Our applications of God’s word will always depend on how accurately we have understood the teaching of God’s word.  But these false teachers were not merely mistaken in their doctrine; their evil went deeper.  Or rather, it originated in deeper problems.  They were not well intentioned teachers who had made unfortunate mistakes.  Their basic motivations were evil.

Paul told Timothy to stay away from those who just want to make money from preaching, and from those in the Church who stray from the sound teachings of the gospel into controversial arguments.  Paul was exposing these false teachers by revealing their real character behind their veneer of prestige.  These are not very flattering words for a group of teachers who apparently thought very highly of themselves!

Paul said, “CONCEITED,” describes the trait of a person having an excessively favorable opinion of his own ability or importance.  The false teachers showed all that and more, yet Paul confronted that conceit by explaining that they were actually “ignorant.”  The utter falsehood of both the content and the conclusions of their teaching was worthy not of pride, but shame.  They did not agree with the truth, but instead had an unhealthy desire to quibble over the meaning of words that promoted speculation and led to arguments about ideals that came not from Scripture, but from the minds of the false teachers.

The controversial ideas and the disputes about words had a devastating effect in the church.  With the believers embroiled in arguments over meaningless theories and false doctrine, relationships began to deteriorate.  Jealousy is followed by fighting, meaning competition and or violent and bitter conflict.  Slander and evil suspicions surely follow.  The seeds of false teaching in Ephesus were yielding a harvest of bitterness.

Here are some more characteristics of false teachers: they always cause trouble because they all had corrupt (debased, depraved, tainted) minds.  Not only were they ignorant, but their minds were so corrupt that the truth (God’s truth) was completely absent.  They were motivated by getting rich.  While Paul instructed the church about the Christian leader’s right to be paid for their service, he made it clear that they should not be greedy and should not consider their ministry as a way to get rich.  Those who did clearly could not be serving the Lord Christ with pure motives, but instead were serving their selfish desires.

The false teachers thought religion was a means to get rich; instead, true religion is great wealth in itself when accompanied by contentment.  One’s religion does not come and go with the uncertainties of material wealth; faith in Christ, with contentment, is the wealth, independent of one’s bankbook and possessions.  The false teachers had it backward.

True religion (faith in Christ) requires training and develops inner spiritual qualities, while at the same time being apparent in the way we relate to others.  It exhibits true character exemplified in the way we serve others.  Contentment grows from our attitude toward living God’s way.  To have contentment in Christ requires four decisions about the events and possessions of our life:

1.     We must focus on what God has already allowed us to have.

2.     We must disregard what we do not have.

3.     We must refuse to covet what others may have.

4.     We must give thanks to God for each and all of his gifts.

If we fail to make these decisions, our contentment will diminish.

Finally, the great wealth that motivated the false teachers was neither lasting nor escapable of bringingcontentment.  Their earthly profits would be left behind.  What brings great wealth has to do with eternal values.  When material treasures become our focus, we quit contributing to our eternal account.  Whatever gains we may experience in this life mean nothing if they cause us eternal bankruptcy!

This statement provides the key to spiritual growth and personal fulfillment.  We should honor God and center our desires on him, and we should be content with what God is doing in our lives.

Paul followed up his statement about the true source of contentment by discounting any hope of ultimate contentment based merely on this life.  The correct perspective on material possessions—money, houses, clothing, vehicles, jewels, land, etc.—remains eternally the same.  They cannot last forever.  We can lose, break, or ruin them in this life.  We didn’t bring them with us when we were born, and we cannot carry anything with us when we die.

Human beings have basic needs.  Believers and unbelievers alike require food and clothing (also implying shelter) for survival.  The difference should be that when believers’ basic needs are met, they ought to be satisfied and content, requiring nothing more.  In contrast, unbelievers are driven by society’s standards and desires, they cannot be content with only basic needs being met because they must always strive for more.

After stating the simple plan for living faithfully, Paul challenged the world’s view by showing the outcome of trying to gain contentment through the pursuit of wealth.  The desire to be rich is, by its very nature, a desire that cannot be satiated.  People who long to be rich cannot understand contentment because they can never have enough money.  The temptation of money feeds their greed.  Soon their passion plunges them into ruin and destruction.  Therefore, let us feast on these words, “GODLINESS WITH CONTENTMENT IS GREAT GAIN!”  Today, I have ministered to you from a position of PEACE, PURPOSE, POWER and PROSPERITY.  May the Lord bless each one of you abundantly and provide you with His Peace and Contentment.  I remain your brother in Jesus Christ, Pastor Davis/Master Teacher!





What happens when kids grow up disrespecting authority figures? We see the prison system all over the country is over crowded with young children who grew up not knowing what it meant to obey authority.  The grave yards are quickly becoming a place where young children are been sent because people have become so fed up with children robbing, beating, threaten and even murdering their parents and other adults that the public is fighting back and shooting and killing these children when their own lives are threaten.  Here in my city of Detroit, just two weeks ago a sixteen year old boy attempted a carjack, the man he attempted to carjack was armed and after ordering the kid to get out of his car and the kid refused, the man shot and killed the young boy.  This is a tragedy and failure on the parent’s part to teach their son that they must respect authority and not be out robbing, stealing and killing other people.  Prosecutors around the country are putting kids on trial from the age of 10 and up as adults.

Respect for authority begins in the home, if your children are not taught to show respect for their parents are other adults in their home and community, they will most certainly not show respect for the government, such as police, teachers, the courts, all other authority figures and the churchRespect for authority comes through the realization that it is set up to help us and not to control us.  It must begin when the children are young and can understand that they are loved and what is being taught to them is that we love them and how to love others by the love and respect that they are shown.

This does not mean that children obey all adults; they only have to obey those to whom their parents have delegated that authority, such as teachers, coaches, etc. However, there should be a deference given to adults by children because of their age and experience.

Respecting authority is something our children should do without any hesitations; however, before they can do this, they have to be taught the meaning of respect and how and why it has to be a key ingredient in all of our lives. All authority is from God (Romans 13:1). Learning to respect an authority, no matter who the particular authority figure is, is respecting God, and is foundational for our children’s future.

As a young person growing up in my community, we all were taught to refer to all adults by saying “Mr. and Mrs., yes Sir and yes Maim,” this was a sign of respect, and immediately set the adult apart from the child’s friends.  Not understanding the principle involved, many adults will say, “Call me (their first name).” A parent can then explain that using “Mr.” and “Mrs.” and the last name is being done for the child’s sake, to help him to learn to show respect for adults.

Since a baby has no concept of respect, and feels only its own needs when it is first born, I believe that the only successful way to teach a child what respect is is to earn the respect of the child as they slowly grow into a thinking human being.

The way this is done is first of all by attending to the child’s natural needs, such as to be fed and nurtured. As the child grows, his needs change. He has increasingly sophisticated psychological needs. He begins to express his own views, his own preferences, and he has an increasing need for freedom, autonomy and independence. This is when the adults in his life can treat him with increasing respect and thereby earn his respect in return.

Let us understand a very important thing as to respect, and that is age affects children’s respect. Both Children and adults deserve respect at every age. Here is a guideline based on age:

Babies – They are too young to show respect but when you meet their needs, they learn to trust you. This helps as they get older because respect for authority is based on trust.

Toddlers – They are old enough to learn to say “please” and “thank you”.

Preschoolers – This is a good time to teach rules and consequences.

Elementary age – They show the most respect for adults who make fair rules. It helps to let them have a say in the rules that they are expected to follow.

Middle and High Schoolers – Allow them to show independence, such as clothing or hairstyles, but make sure you have guidelines. They will appreciate the respect you are showing them. We respect you and the incredible job that you have, being a parent.

As parents, it’s our responsibility to equip our children to function well in the world, and if we

Picture of me showing love for my Grand Children

neglect that responsibility our children could easily wind up in prison are the graves.  No parent wants this for their child, therefore it is important that we address the needs of our children when they are born and stay with it no matter how difficult the task may become into their adult lives.

One of the most important things you can teach your child is respect. Keep in mind that respect is not the same as obedience. Children might obey because they are afraid. If they respect you, they will obey because they know you want what’s best for them, and the best way to teach respect is to show respect. When a child experiences respect, they know what it feels like and begin to understand how important it is. Keep in mind the saying “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

Respect is an attitude. Being respectful helps a child succeed in life. If children don’t have respect for peers, authority, or themselves, it’s almost impossible for them to succeed. A respectful child takes care of belongings and responsibilities, and a respectful child gets along with peers.  Schools teach children about respect, but parents have the most influence on how respectful children become. Until children show respect at home, it’s unlikely they will show it anywhere else.  Although you may not realize it, your child must also respect herself or himself.
This concludes part one of a two part message.  Please read and study this as the first session of many to come on this message.  I remain your brother in Christ, Pastor Davis/Master Teacher.


The Crucifixion of Christ by Simon Vouet.

The Crucifixion of Christ by Simon Vouet. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


The Passion of Christ, what does it mean to you?  Now allow us to reveal the story in words and pictures.  As you read this short introduction, pause and say a prayer.  Let your words meditate deep inside your soul.  Know that this is truly the first day of the rest of your life.  Don’t just sit and watch this movie, let it stir up the passion inside of you to know the truth and the truth will set you free.

Now allow me to first engage you with this short story of the VINE, because each one of us is the BRANCHES of this VINE that grew up before the delight and gaze of Jehovah like an exotic, tender plant in this world of sin.  He was like a root out of dry ground.  Israel was the dry ground, a most unlikely soil.  The nation of Israel could see no beauty in Him, nothing in His appearance to attract them.

Now here is how F.B. Meyer’s describes the mystery of His humiliation:

The tender plant; the sucker painfully pushing its way through the crust of the caked ground; the absence of natural attractiveness.  Such imagery awaits and receives its full interpretation from the New Testament, with its story of Christ’s peasant parentage, his manger bed, and lowly circumstances–fisherfolk his choice disciples; poverty his constant lot; the common people his devoted admirers; thieves and malefactors on either side of his cross; the lowly and poor the constituents of his Church.  This were humiliation indeed, though the irregularities of human lot are scarce distinguishable from the heights whence He came.

Now prepare yourself to watch this awesome soul stirring move.  This is the original 2 hour full length movie.



Entering the tunnel of life after death

We begin today’s lesson not with one question, but two. The first question is this,  “IS THERE LIFE FOR MANKIND AFTER DEATH?”  The second question is, “IS YOUR FAITH BASED ON THE WORD OF GOD ARE SOMETHING ELSE?”  I consider both questions important for the overall discussion of the Death and Resurrection of JESUS CHRIST.

Therefore, as we begin our forward look towards Easter and the celebration of the life, death and resurrections of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, I find that there is no better time than now to ask these two very important questions, and have you the reader to examine your soul for the answer to a question that so many of us refuse to even consider bringing up in our family discussions.  I find this to be a sad commentary especially for believers.

Now as I was doing research for my book on “LIFE AFTER DEATH,” I came across this quote from another great writer, and it said, “Christianity,” “is a religion of the open tomb.” Keep that thought in mind as you study this lesson on the resurrection. The founder of Christianity could not be kept in the prison house of death. An angel rolled the great stone from the door of Joseph’s new tomb, and the Son of God came forth triumphant over death. “I am the resurrection and the life,” He said (John 11:25).

The apostle Paul argues that the Christian faith stands or falls upon the fact of the resurrection of Christ.

“If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised, and if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith” (1 Corinthians 15:13, 14).

Now let us understand this one very important truth, and that is this; Jesus came to this Earth to teach mankind a particular lesson; and if He was destined to become the Savior of mankind, then the greatest lesson which He could have taught man was that of faith; faith in his God and faith in a life after death. By His very own death, Christ Jesus must bring to man faith, and the belief in a LIFE AFTER DEATH. He preached immortality, and to further impress this fact upon humanity, He must go through the throes of death in order to return to life and bring to man proof of an after death life. To accomplish this He appeared to His beloved disciples in His  spiritual body. In I Corinthians, 15:6, Paul says, “After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once: of whom the greater part remains unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.” He walked and talked to them so that they might believe that what He had preached, the immortality of the soul, was a fact and that after man has laid aside his physical body, he still lives in a finer and more ethereal body.

Our hope of deliverance from sin in this world (see Romans 6:4, 11, 12) and the reality of life in the next (see 1 Corinthians 15:17-23) are dependent upon the resurrection of Jesus. The incarnation of God’s Son, His sinless life and vicarious death, would have availed nothing if He had been kept a prisoner of death. The saints of all ages would remain in their graves, sealed forever, if Christ had not broken the power of death and come forth to immortal life. And Christians would have been “false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised” (1 Corinthians 15:15)!”

We encourage you to open your mind and think deeply upon this lesson and the ones to come.  Our hope is that you who have not accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior find some comfort in these words as you continue to study with us here at VINE AND BRANCH WORLD MINISTRIES.  If you want SALVATION for your soul, you can have it right here and now.  Just stroll to the top of this page and click on SALVATION IS FREE, read it, accept it, and come to know Jesus as your Lord and Savior. There is HOPE in a continuous life beyond this life when you accept Jesus as the only one that can provide you with it.  We have presented this lesson to you today from a position of peace, power, purpose and prosperity.  I remain your brother in Jesus Christ, PASTOR DAVIS/MASTER TEACHER!

Now let us end this lesson for today with this short video clip.  Please return tomorrow for another great lesson on LIFE AFTER DEATH!





We have entered a brand new year, the old, we have left behind.  All things new lie ahead, and therefore present us with our greatest challenges of all time.  The question then becomes, “how do we solve our family problems in this new year that divided our family in the old year?”  This is a very important question that must be placed at the head of our list of problems to be resolved in 2012, but resolve them we must.

Satan is our greatest enemy, and he is continuing his work of divide and conquer.  He knows that families, a church are a business that is divided against its self eventually destroys itself from within.  Therefore, every opportunity he gets, he pushes our hot buttons to make us war against each other.

The time has come for us to learn to lean and depend on the one who has already defeated Satan, to show us the way of bringing cohesiveness into our families that will triumph over the evil spirits that have divided us in the past.  We are victories, because God has given us the victory to lead our families to victory in 2012.  No weapon formed against us shall prosper.  That means no matter what Satan attempts to do with his limited powers by pitting one member of the family against another member, if we are leaning, depending and trusting in God, Satan is doomed and we can return our families to greatness by knowing the truth.  The bible teaches us in John 8:32 this simple message, “Know the truth and the truth will set you FREE.”

Leaders within the families must stand strong, processing a strong moral character and not comprise their moral integrity for the evil that Satan will present to them.  The Pharisees were a perfect example of presenting division within the family, and Jesus was the perfect example of a leader who presented a strong moral character and showed us the standards by which we must stand on to be a great leader for our families.  Jesus said to them, “Look at the proud! They trust in themselves, and their lives are crooked. But the righteous will live by their faithfulness to GodWealth is treacherous, and the arrogant are never at rest. They open their mouths as wide as the grave, and like death, they are never satisfied. In their greed they have gathered up many nations and swallowed many peoples.  (Habakkuk 2:4-5 NLT)

As a leader in our families, our job is to be a servant leader.  Follow the example of Jesus and become a humble servant and serve all humanityFamily members will present you with some of the greatest challenges you will ever encounter.  But you must know how to overcome the feuding by following the example of JesusJesus knew Satan’s strategies and just how he would apply them to bring about division within the familyJesus said to them,Any kingdom divided by civil war is doomed. A town or family splintered by feuding will fall apart. And if Satan is casting out Satan, he is divided and fighting against himself. His own kingdom will not survive. (Matthew 12:25-26 NLT)

Your strong moral character must be the example in which the family in 2012 will rally around and find their moral compass to move towards the purpose and destination that God has already laid out for them.  Remember, just as a good tree bears good fruit and a diseased tree bears inedible fruit, so the fruits of a person’s life will show the quality of his or her characterFruit is a comprehensive word, referring to teaching, character, and action.  Our character is revealed by our conduct.

We have ministered this word to you today from a position of PEACE, PURPOSE, POWER and PROSPERITY.  We encourage you to think globally as you work locally to bring about a change within the family in 2012.  Making it stronger, more cohesive and less divisively.  Empowering it with love, growing it with a purpose, as God blesses you, moles you and shapes you into a powerful, yet humble servant that is capable of moving the family into the realm of possibilities and bringing about the prosperity that is desired for the family in 2012.  I remain your brother in CHRIST JESUS, PASTOR DAVIS/MASTER TEACHER!





So many of our churches have become polluted places of worship, and God is not pleased with what is going on.  Sin of all sorts is running rapidly throughout the body.  Our Priest, Bishops, Pastors and other Church officials, are engaging in sexual immorality with young children of both sexes and then doing everything to hide it from their members and the public at large.  Once such immoral activities are uncovered, and the leaders are asked to account for their actions a light is shined on the church and the membership has to pay out millions of dollars for lawsuits that are brought against the church leadership and sometimes the church itself.  This is truly a case to be made how the Priest, Bishops, and Pastors are keeping their members prosperity poor.

These sorts of immoral activities that are committed by our Priest, Bishops, Pastors and other Church officials defile the church and bring condemnation upon the entire body.  The body must learn how to stop condoning what they know is the truth concerning their leaders and start confronting them with the truth of how God intends for His Church to operate.

The one important thing that we all must realize is that these sort of immoral activities are not new within our churches.  For thousands of years our churches have had to deal with these sorts of activities among their regular members.  We all know of someone at some church that is dealing with these issues today.  Therefore, the question becomes how we confront the people that are committing these acts of sexual immorality and at the same time provide comfort to them as well as the victim of these immoral acts.

In Paul’s first letter to the church of Corinth, he wrote, “I also received a report of scandalous sex within your church family, a kind that wouldn’t be tolerated even outside the church: One of your men is sleeping with his stepmother. Moreover, you are so above it all that it does not even faze you! Shouldn’t this break your hearts? Shouldn’t it bring you to your knees in tears? Shouldn’t this person and his conduct be confronted and dealt with? (1 Corinthians 5:1-2 MSG)

A report had been delivered to Paul regarding sexual immorality going on among the believers in Corinth.  The Corinthian church had been unwilling to discipline this man.  Paul prefaced his pronouncement of knowledge of this situation by saying that the problem was so evil that even the pagans did not do it—quite an indictment on these believers.  Most of the believers knew about the sinful relationship already, but apparently they had been unwilling to admit it, so Paul described the sin point-blank:  He said a man in the church was living in sin with his father’s wife” (probably his stepmother).  Whether the man had seduced this woman away from his father, or whether the woman was divorced or widowed is unclear.  In any case, even the pagans would have shuddered at this, but the church members were trying to ignore the situation.

We know from our study of this situation that the problem of arrogance in the Corinthian church had spilled over to the point where they were tolerating flagrant sin.  Instead of being proud of themselves, they should have been mourning in sorrow and shame.  Then, they should have removed the man from the fellowship.  The church must discipline flagrant sin among its members such sins, left unchecked, can divide and paralyze a church.  This “removal” of the person was not meant to be vengeful but to help bring about a cure.

Today in our society, tolerance has become such a battle cry in the media and in political and educational circles that it has affected even the church.  It is very difficult for people to discipline sin in church members because everyone is trying to be accepting of others.  People say, “Who am I to judge?  I have sin in my life.”  So they want all sin excused, including their own.  We must not let modern-day low standards determine what is true and right for the church.

While those in the Corinthian church had failed to do anything about this man sin, Paul himself would tell them what had to be done.  Now listen to what the Bible tells us how Paul dealt with this situation.  It is a critical point, which we all as Church leaders need to think deeply about this matter.  Here is how Paul described what he would do, “I’ll tell you what I would do. Even though I am not there in person, consider me right there with you, because I can fully see what is going on. I am telling you that this is wrong. You must not simply look the other way and hope it goes away on its own. Bring it out in the open and deal with it in the authority of Jesus our Master. Assemble the community I will be present in spirit with you, and our Master Jesus will be present in power. Hold this man’s conduct up to public scrutiny. Let him defend it if he can! However, if he cannot, then out with him! It will be totally devastating to him, of course, and embarrassing to you. But better devastation and embarrassment than damnation. You want him on his feet and forgiven before the Master on the Day of Judgment.  (1 Corinthians 5:3-5 MSG)

Was this punishment to harsh for the church to be handing out to one of their faithful members, or did Paul have it just right?  It is my belief that Paul had weighed the matter and had correctly passed judgment.  As an apostle and the spiritual father of the church of Corinth, Paul had the authority to deal with the matter and he understood the danger to the church if the sin were to remain undisciplined.  Paul told the church, in no uncertain terms to call a meeting of the whole congregation so they would witness and support the action.  As they met, Paul would be there in spirit, because he carried the authority as an apostle, and the power of the Lord Jesus would also be with them as they met.  The entire situation was under the mighty power of the Lord Jesus to deal with the man’s spirit and to bring him to repentance.

Paul explained the discipline that should be carried out.  Cast this man out of the church and into Satan’s hands.  This would mean excluding him from the fellowship of believers.  Without the spiritual support of Christians, this man would be left alone with his sin and Satan, and hopeful this emptiness would drive him to repentance.  The church could not literally give him to Satan, for only God can consign a person to eternal judgment.  It was meant to force him to see the consequences of sin by living in Satan’s sphere of influence, the world apart from Christ and the church.

That his sinful nature will be destroyed meant that the exclusion from the fellowship would help the man to face his sinful, selfish nature (flesh), repent, and return to the churchPaul wanted this sinner to experience the crucifixion of his sinful nature.  It may take such drastic measures to deal with the sinful nature, but how much more important for the man that he face this and repent in order that he would be saved in the end.  Paul hoped that this harsh disciplinary action might be of eternal benefit to the man.

The one thing that we notice concerning Paul harsh disciplinary action of the man, the woman was not mention as to any disciplinary action taken against her.  Therefore, we must assume that the omission of discipline for the woman implies that she was not a believer.  The church is responsible for disciplining only its members, not unbelievers.

Our Churches today need the spiritual determination to deal with sin such as these that affect the whole Church.  But excommunication as a form of discipline, and moving Priest, Bishops and Pastors from one church to another and not holding them accountable for their actions is a crime as well as a sin in itself again God and all of humanity.  When our spiritual leaders stand before us knowing in their hearts that the life that they are living is immoral and perverted and their teachings are sinful and shameful in nature, they should be condemned just as Paul condemned the man that was sleeping with his father’s wife.

This kind of activity harms the church, the community and all of humanity.  The church is not only spiritually damaged, but it and its members are financially damaged, because the tithes that they had been putting into the store house now has to be paid out for sexual immorality instead of helping to lift its members up out of poverty, and with the poverty rate at an all time high in this country, this is why we call it as it really is, “Pastors must stop keeping their members prosperity poor.”

In our next installment of “Pastors must stop keeping their members prosperity poor,” we will discuss with you, how forgiving the offender of sexual immorality should be dealt with.  I think all of you who wrote and requested additional teachings on this important subject.  There were hundreds of you who commented on (Part 1) of this continuing series.  For those of you who are reading this teaching for the first time, may I suggest to you on the right side of the home page to click on any month, then on the left side of the page under categories, stroll down to Pastors and click there.  In the center of the page look for the title, “Pastors must stop keeping their members prosperity poor.”

May I encourage each one of you to think globally and work locally?  I minister to you from a position of peace, power, purpose and prosperity.  I remain your brother in Christ, Pastor Davis/Master Teacher.


There is enough blame to go around:

There is enough blame to go around when some say that it is liberalism that has caused the violence.  Others say that it is the removal of prayer from our schools.  Some say it is the steady stream of violence we see in the movies, on the nightly news cast, on all sorts of TV programs and especially the video games.

There are still others who blame the government for overtaxing us, and forcing parents to have to abandon their children for the workplace.  When it comes to youth using guns to settle their differences, there are those who would blame the gun manufacturers and the gun dealers.  But no where do we see anyone taking responsibility for what has happened.  Not the parents, schools, churches, business, government or the youth themselves.  No, everyone wants to place the blame on someone else.  It is time that we as parents begin to accept the major portion of responsibility and take control of our children’s lives and get the government out of our homes and bedrooms.  We as parents are responsible for raising our youth and it does take the whole community to be involved and always willing to lend a helping hand.

Parent’s Responsibility:

When I was a youth living in a small town, everyone knew everyone and no one was ever afraid to correct us if they saw us doing something wrong.  Today, if you correct a child when you see them doing wrong, you will have the parents knocking at your door for chastising their child.  You might even have the police come calling on you, if you are lucky that the child has not shot and killed you.  There is something badly wrong with this picture, but it is a true one today.

I can recall a time when I was in a vacation bible school; my wife at the time was teaching a Bible study class with one of our Associate Pastors.  I had been called outside to break up a disturbance.  When I came back into the church, this young man’s sister was standing in the middle of the church cursing my wife and the pastor out using all sorts of foul language.  I escorted her outside and attempted to talk with her to no avail.  She left and within a few minutes, just after things had gotten back to normal within the church class, the doors swung open with a loud bang and a loud voice began to roar from the rear of the church.  It was the mother of the two teenagers yelling and screaming at me with language worst than her children had used, telling me what she was going to do to me if I ever put my hands on her children again.

Now this mother was the chairman of the usher board within the church.  Not only were her children wrong, but she was wrong for the way she handled the situation.  Her children went home and lied to her about what had taken place at the church.  She was willing to believe the worst from them, and instead of coming to find out what was going on, she came in accusing me and others of striking her children when no such thing had taken place.  If this had happened when I was a youth, I would have gotten my butt whipped before I left the church, then I would have been taken home to my parents and they would have whipped my butt again.  But you see, in today’s political correctness society, there are too many parents who refuse to correct their own children and will not allow anyone in the churches, schools or the community to do so.  Therefore, the youth’s attitude is you are not my parents and you can’t tell me what to do.  This is a sad commentary for our youth and it is a factor that is contributing to the youth violence in America today.

Another part of this problem of correcting children is some of the abuse that some parents have perpetuated upon their children that has caused the government to get more involved in our daily lives.  We parents are responsible for our children and we must shoulder that responsibility with love, understanding and patienceChildren can be a problem.  There is much peer pressure on them.  They want to fit in with their friends, therefore as a parent, we must try to understand their changing life style, and the growth hormones as they experienced adulthood.  We must treat them with respect, try and understand that they too do have problems and they may not always share those problems with us.  But we must always be willing to put our arms around them and daily tell them that we love them, even though we may not be having the kind of conversation we would like to have with them.  But I tell you that there is power in love.  When our youth can feel within themselves that they are loved, it brings a much different kind of respect from them.

We must stop abusing our children at home as well as in public.  They have feelings too, and when we disrespect them in front of their peers with words and deeds, it brings out in them a disrespect for us as their parents.  I am not advocating not punishing your children.  But there is a right way and a wrong way to punish them when they do wrong.  I see some parents slapping their children in the face when they think they are in the wrong.  No matter whether they are home or in the general public, this shows disrespect for your children.  To me, there is never a reason to slap a child in the face.  This only shows your anger and lack of self control.  When you do this you are abusing your child.  You should never hit your child when you are angry, this only satisfies your anger and does nothing to correct the child’s behavior.  When your child does wrong, you should chastise them no matter where you are, but when they are teenagers, you should have so trained them in such a way, that you could let them know of your displeasure, and your child should respond for whatever they have done wrong until such a time you can speak to them about it, and punish them for the act, if punishment is call for.

The Bible tells us that, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.  The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly, but the mouth of fools pours forth foolishness.”  (Proverbs 15:1-2).  Let us parents learn to become wise in dealing with our children, because our children are much wiser today than we were when we were youth.  Therefore, we must deal with them with a wise heart and the spirit of the Lord dwelling within us.

Correcting a child when they do wrong make you become a strong authority figure in that child’s life, and correct him or her you must.  If you don’t then the child sooner or later is going to control you.  Listen to what God tells us, “Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; the rod of correction will drive it far from him.”  (Proverb 22:15).

It further goes on to say, “Do not withhold correction from a child, for if you beat him with a rod, he will not die.  You shall beat him with a rod, and deliver his soul from hell.”  (Proverb 23:13-14). You see God is telling us that we must use the rod of correction to keep our children on a straight path.  We must use whatever means are at our disposal to correct their behavior and snatch them from the jaws of Satan.  The violence within our youth has gotten out of control and we as parents have allowed it by advocating the non use of the rod for correcting our children when they do wrong.

I can recall as a child, one of my greatest fears that kept me out of trouble and from doing wrong was having to get a beating from my father.  Now my father very seldom ever had to beat me, but when he did, I received no more than five or six licks from him.  But those few licks seemed to last for eternity, when they were being administered to me.  Many times my mother would use the threat of my father’s beating to keep the rest of us in line.  The mere threat of a beating from my father could cause me to break out in a cold sweat, and no, I did not die from the beating or was I harmed in any way because I am writing about it today.  The beatings that my mother and father administered to me, and my brothers and sisters were their way of teaching us to do the right thing and when we would do wrong, we would know the price we would have to pay.  The beating was also a way of showing how much they loved us and wanted us to grow up being obedient children and having love and respect for our fellowman.

On one occasion I was out with my father and my two youngest sons and my father was discussing the rearing of his children with some other parents.  And at that moment, I could see how proud my father felt about the way in which he had raised his six boys and three girls, when he told the other parents “that of all his eight children, none of them had ever been in jail or was on drugs.”  You see my father had no remorse for having beaten our butts when we did wrong.  However, since that day about four years ago, one of my brothers has become addicted to drugs.  But I will discuss this in another topic, dealing with drugs.  My father was and still is the authority figure in my life today.  I have the greatest respect for my father and have never spoken back to him or disrespected him in any way ever.  How many of you today can truthfully make this same statement?  This is a testimony of the way my parents raised me and the way parents are raising their children today.  I have attempted to raise my children with the same moral standards as my parents did with me.  I have used the rod on them and now uses that same rod on my grandchildren with their approval to help keep them in line and become a productive citizen within the community.  I am blessed to have had the opportunity to raise wonderful children.  The older ones have turned out great and have children of their own.

The Bible instructs us as parents to, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” (Proverb 29:17). Let us as parents begin to move away from the way of the world in its teaching and get into the teaching of God.  When we do, it will bring a much greater joy into our hearts for if we follow God’s way in correcting and instructing our children, listen to what he tells us about the reward we will have.  God says, “Correct thy son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto thy soul.” (Proverb 29:17).

Now to you children, you must learn to be obedient and have respect for your parents, teachers and other elders.  Your lack of respect for authority is a hard thing to accept.  If you don’t do these things, you are only going to wind up in prison or be killed and neither one of these is an acceptable alternative.  Listen to what God instructs you to do,  “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is Right.”  “Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with promise: “that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.” (Ephesians 6:1-4).

May we all grow to become better parents, study and learn from previous generations their ways and incorporate this into your knowledge today and together we can bring about change of attitudes for all and help to change the world and its way of doing things.

May the grace of God richly abound within you, keeping you strong and productive as you move forward in helping to meet the needs of all our children.

Today, I minister to you from a position of peace, purpose, power and prosperity in Jesus name.  I remain your brother in Christ, Pastor Davis/Master Teacher.








There are churches all over the world where the Holy Spirit is not present.  He is not present because the people don’t fear God.  They may be socially active, economically viable, and organizationally functional; but where there is no fear, there is no godliness.  Where there is no godliness, there is no anointing.  There can be no comfort because God will never comfort you when you are outside His will.

People go to some churches week in and week out seeking to be comforted in their sin.  You can find a church that makes you comfortable with its ritual, its tradition, and its ministry emphasis.  But it is a tragedy if a church’s leaders do not strain to create an atmosphere of godliness and the body does not fear God as it works out its salvation.  The comfort one finds in that situation is one of the greatest deceptions of the devil.

Satan desires to make you comfortable in your sin.  If you are comfortable in your sin, you will not see the need to confess it.  If you do not confess your sin, you will not know the cleansing forgiveness of God.  Without His cleansing forgiveness, you cannot enter into His presence, because your sin separates you from Him (Isa. 59:2).  Then Satan has you right where he wants you–in sin and apart from God.  If you are in sin and comfortable in your church, please know that you are being deceived by the enemy.  God won’t help you walk in sin.  What He will do, however, is help you get up and walk away from that sin so that you might get back on the path of righteousness and walk in the fear of the Lord.  He says if you walk in fear of Him, you will know the comfort of His Spirit and a fruitful, spiritually productive relationship with Him.

Philippians 2:12 says, “Theerefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.”  Paul said work out your own salvation in a holy reverence for God and a righteous “afraid-ness” of Him.  You don’t work for your salvation; you work out your salvation.  You don’t work to get saved.  Your salvation is fleshed out in a daily process of living in the power of the Spirit of God.

A remarkable thing happens when a church is foull of godly men and women who work out their salvation with a fear of God.  Acts 9:31 says, “Then the churches throughout all Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace and were edified.”  Now watch this:  “And walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, they were maltiplied” (emphasis mine).  The church grew numerically and spiritually, quantitatively and qualitatively.  Why?  They did so because they walked in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost.  Walking in the comfort of the Holy Ghost does not mean shouting, running down aisles, laughing uncontrollably, barking like a dog, or jumping across benches.  The comfort of the Holy Ghost is that ministry of the Spirit that stabilizes you.  It is the settling of your spirit by His Spirit.  It is when God strengthens you by coming alongside you in your particular set of circumstances.

The context of the Acts 9 text suggests that at the time this comfort settled on the aforementioned believers, the church was suffering intense persecution.  Christians were sought and killed for following a man named Jesus.  But in spite of their oppression, they were edified and growing individually and collectively.  They were growing because the Holy Spirit was comforting them, and there would have been no comfort without fear.

By the way, fellow pastor, how is your church growing?  If it is alive, it ought to be growing.  If it is not growing, maybe God is calling you to examine the spiritual atmosphere in your congregation.  Dear pastor, maybe God is telling you to examine your own lifestyle and your own heart.  Now, don’t take my position to the extreme.  I am by no means suggesting that the only gauge for vitality and growth in a church is the size of its roll.

The world will always “out crowd” the church.  Crowds have assembled for every reason, from viewing the tail of a comet to supporting a follower of Mohammed.  Don’t measure the godliness of a church by the size of the crowd.  The Bible says “narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matt. 7:14).  Don’t count bodies.  Count lives.  See if the people followed Jesus into the assembly or if they followed some other leader.  See if there is a holy, reverential fear of God woven into the fabric of their behavior.  A growing church is filled with people who walk in the fear of the Lord.  Because they fer the Lord, they know the comfort of the Holy Ghost.  This is the path to godliness and growth in any church.  How is your church growing?


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