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“Let’s decide which of us is in the right. God may avenge me, but it is in his hands, not mine.” (MSG) 1 Samuel 24:12 We are in a battle for the souls of men. The opposition has the populous vote and has gained momentum over the years. It often appears as if we are on the losing side while vices seem to be virtuous. What the fathers of our faith established is now under attack led by those who ought to be defenders of the faith. Their creeds have been reinterpreted or altogether ignored. Their values have been viewed as obsolete and often amended. Who is listening while God is yet speaking through the faithful few? There are those who are willing to stand against the winds of adversity and defy the storms of error that are unleashed in order to overtake, if possible the very elect. Let God decide who is right and who is wrong. God will avenge His elect. Truth crushed to the earth will rise again. The argument of who is right and who is wrong will eventually be settled. It will not be a draw between two opposing views. God know those who are…

“Give us help from trouble, for the help of man is useless.” Psalm 60:11 None has ever trusted God so completely that they never had a shadow of doubt. It is in the shadows where we look away from God in search for what appears to be strong but is lacking in content and in character. The challenge came to us and we wondered why we were chosen for adversity. Even then, there arose among some what appeared to be further evidence that God was absent. Many have abandoned God completely with thoughts that He was unreliable, while there are others who learned the lesson and passed the test. Without the test, there would be no need for help. The awareness of our need fostered the acknowledgement that we could not carry out our assignments alone.  Without Him we can do nothing. The assistance of man is useless unless God is involved. The help of others only further complicates the issue. It is above our heads and the heads that stand tall are not tall enough and their arm of strength cannot reach far enough to bring remedy to the deep wound left within. The need must first be identified…

“And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, Yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore, But your eyes shall see your teachers.  Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” Isa 30:20-21 The departure from the Way is the root cause of the adversity that comes from the Lord. There are challenges that come as result of obedience and challenges that are rooted in rebellion. The difference between the two is the adherence on the part of the challenged to hear the instructions that come from the Lord. He is available to deliver us from all of our trouble, but do we listen to His voice before us to lead or have we left what He has to say to us behind? Their teachers were sidelined and replaced with guides who misguided them. They listened to falsehoods as blind guides led them into pits. But God did not abandon them even though they had abandoned Him. From behind His voice could still be heard. From the rear, the places inhabited and celebrated was the voice of God speaking to them in order for them to…

“that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ” 1 Peter 1:7 Faith is tested by the fires of adversity. It is often difficult to understand the challenges and interpret them as working together for our good, but each that we are allowed to face has significance in relation to our future. God tempers the fire and regulates each challenge so that none is beyond their usefulness to Him. Even though Satan meant it for evil, God transforms what would be evil and uses it for our good. It is not the external pressure that is His major emphasis, but it our faith in the midst of it that matters most to Him. Can faith withstand all and remain faith or does it disintegrate under pressure? All false perceptions are burned away in the fire and nothing remains but the genuine. Then He reveals Himself as being the same yesterday, today, and forevermore. He was there, He is there, and will remain with us through all that comes and goes. Our praise is genuine because…

“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” Proverbs 17:17 One of God’s greatest gifts is a true and loving friend and a brother. He is there when others may have abandoned you and moved on. The love of a friend is not always soft and easy. There are occasions when tough love is necessary. An honest friend is not the person that agrees with our wrongdoings. He insists that his brother follow a course of righteousness. He is neither a fatalist nor an eternal optimist. He is acquainted with human frailties, but help to seek a path for recovery and restoration. The adversity may be external or internal. The troubled soul is in need of someone who will help him take an objective look at what he would otherwise be left unquestioned. There are many who fall off the cliff without warning. Their companions were too afraid to say anything thinking that they may cease walking together. While there are others who do not care enough to speak the truth in love. “Faithful are the wounds of a friend.” But there is a friend that sticks closer than a brother.

“This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast” Hebrews 6:19 The waves of adversity will test the authenticity of our faith. Whether we have placed all our trust in God is proven in trying times. Here we cannot rely upon any other person or thing. We have launched out beyond the banks of secure living and now have placed our lives in the hands of the only One who can safely navigate us through troubled waters. It is the emotions that are first under attack. The mind would consider the safety and security of the harbor. Some would think it would have been much better if they had never launched out into the deep. It is only when we consider the Commissioner of the mission that we may rest assured that none of the things facing us along this journey has taken Him by surprise. He is there to protect us and to build within us something of value far beyond what we are at those moments of conflict able to see. To trust the Lord is to love Him with our minds, wills, and emotions. It is to submit what we would otherwise…

“Give us help from trouble, for the help of man is useless.” Psalm 60:11 None has ever trusted God so completely that they never had a shadow of doubt. It is in the shadows where we look away from God in search for what appears to be strong but is lacking in content and in character. The challenge came to us and we wondered why we were chosen for adversity. Even then, there arose among some what appeared to be further evidence that God was absent. Many have abandoned God completely with thoughts that He was unreliable, while there are others who learned the lesson and passed the test. Without the test, there would be no need for help. The awareness of our need fostered the acknowledgement that we could not carry out our assignments alone.  Without Him we can do nothing. The assistance of man is useless unless God is involved. The help of others only further complicates the issue. It is above our heads and the heads that stand tall are not tall enough and their arm of strength cannot reach far enough to bring remedy to the deep wound left within. The need must first be identified if…

“And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, Yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore, But your eyes shall see your teachers.  Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” Isa 30:20-21 The departure from the Way is the root cause of the adversity that comes from the Lord. There are challenges that come as result of obedience and challenges that are rooted in rebellion. The difference between the two is the adherence on the part of the challenged to hear the instructions that come from the Lord. He is available to deliver us from all of our trouble, but do we listen to His voice before us to lead or have we left what He has to say to us behind? Their teachers were sidelined and replaced with guides who misguided them. They listened to falsehoods as blind guides led them into pits. But God did not abandon them even though they had abandoned Him. From behind His voice could still be heard. From the rear, the places inhabited and celebrated was the voice of God speaking to them in order for them to…

“Do not be a terror to me; You are my hope in the day of doom.” Jeremiah 17:17 Our confidence is only secured only when we place it entirely in the Hands of the Lord. Life is too uncertain and sudden terror may appear at times when preparation for it is impossible.  Many will wonder why we would place such confidence in a God that we cannot see. Scoffers will rise up thinking that our denial of self and worldly acclaim is but mere superstition. Yet we pray that we do not offend God through any self-defense attempts at preserving our own reputation. Even when we do not make sense to the world, we desire His wisdom to be our guide. All of the wisdom that comes from other sources is being judged.  Only God’s wisdom will stand. He is our hope in the day of testing.  He will take us through the storms of adversity victoriously!

“Their job is to teach my people the difference between the holy and the common, to show them how to discern between unclean and clean.” Ezekiel 44:23 The job of the preacher is not merely to entertain people or to build buildings. Neither is he successful when he possesses the ability to draw large crowds. God has assigned us to teach the difference between the sacred things and the secular. We must do all to the glory of God, but not all things warrant the same attention. The neglect of foundational truths will erect structures of wood, hay, and stubble that cannot withstand the waves of adversity or the strong winds of erroneous doctrines. Only those who are well taught will be able stand being fully equipped with the full armor of God. They are led in the path of holiness and righteousness thus developing their discernment between good and evil, the clean and the unclean. The paralyzing sin of sameness has dulled the senses of many. But God will raise up His priests who have not bowed their knees to Baal and remain faithful for such a time as this.