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“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.

“By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” 1 John 3:16-17 The love of Jesus Christ is expressed by what He gave, not by what He gained. The power of the mighty may attain for them both position and privilege, but none of our trappings of success are sufficient enough to endear their heart with passion. One may even know that God is good and be impressed with His benevolence, but he is only left with an impression of love but may never know it. To know His love is to know why His death was a necessity. Our sins ran deeper than surface adjustments would satisfy and required more than a courteous and casual approach towards duty could ever fill. Jesus was fully aware of what pleases the Father thus He also knew what displeases Him. To know love is to know and desire what pleases God alone. True love frees one to obey without compulsion or coercion. Our lives are hidden in Christ thus His love flows through us to others. We cannot give too much because nothing is exclusively ours….

 “The way of peace they have not known, and there is no justice in their ways; they have made themselves crooked paths; whoever takes that way shall not know peace.” Isaiah 59:8-9 There is a peace offered by God that surpasses what the crowd demands. Yes, fairness in judgments must be executed, and the wild behavior of the wayward majority must be regulated by laws. But justice gives what justice demands. Laws alone cannot change the heart. It condemns both the accused and the accusers for all have sinned. It looks into the secret sins of the heart, and the evil practices done under the cloak of darkness. Those sins though unseen, cause dis-ease of the soul.  Justice condemns the ways of the wicked. A death sentence is served to all who follow her path. How can one know the way to peace when the contributing forces of war are unknown? None are aware of why they love what is evil and hate what is good. Yet those who seek both justice and peace are blind to their own guilt. It is the right path that must be chosen if peace is ever to be known. Jesus Christ paid for…

“Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom.” James 3:13 It appears to be a misnomer to use wisdom and meekness in the same sentence. Wisdom often elevates the pride of many who become even wiser in their own eyes. Godly wisdom is always to be accompanied with meekness for those who receive wisdom from God are constantly aware of its source. Whenever we lift our intellect to a level above that which requires simple faith, true knowledge would be eclipsed by vanity. Strong and convincing arguments may be impressive, but causes the mind to erode into believing a lie when the truth cannot yet be proven. The meek of the earth are teachable and can learn in order to participate with God in what He is doing. The wise and the prudent cannot even see it as being important, thus live their lives as contradictions even to their own beliefs. God will bring both beliefs and lifestyles into one. We can then live and speak what we truly believe.

“For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God; (8) but if it bears thorns and briers, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned.” Hebrews 6:7-8 What we have experienced and participated in with God is not merely for ourselves. He allows us to experience His goodness in order to provide healing for others. Either we will bear healing herbs for wounded, restless, and reckless souls, or we bear thorns and briers to further wound them. The deepest wound is wielded by sword-handlers who are unskilled in spiritual warfare. They cannot effectively interpret God’s grace in ways to benefit the wayward. We have been enlightened, tasted of the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come. Therefore, we are the ones that are to bear herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated. The fruit of our lives is for those who wish to know the Source and purpose for our being alive. Then, we…

“Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.” Galatians 6:10 The household of faith is the instrument in God’s hands to bring sinners to salvation. They are the carriers of the Gospel message with the potential of setting the captives free. To do good concerning those who are of faith is participating in the expansion of faith. Our practice must be to do good to all. Benevolence must be practiced until it becomes a habit. But special care must be given to those who are of the household of faith. It frees the hands to work and the soul from unnecessary burdens so that it may be extended to those to whom God will to reach. The world is awaiting the release of love bestowed from God that is free from pretense and selfish ambition. Therefore we must take care in prayerfully considering those who are faithful within the household assisting them so that they may distribute to others what they so desperately need. Where should we lend a helping hand, and where should we direct our giving? God unites our hearts to a household of faith…

“Let love be without hypocrisy.” Roman 12:9 Love is to be an expression of one’s real character or actual behavior. It is a movement and not a state of being. God is love and as we move in His direction, His love within us moves us in the direction of becoming more like Jesus. It is the Spirit of love within our hearts that transform our personalities. Therefore we cannot take credit for any good that may generate from us. We know that it is the love of Christ within us that we have received from God as evidence that we belong to Him. Whatever may try to remain outside of love must be surrendered. It is a strain on occasion to walk in love among those who may not deserve it. But in light of His love released towards us before we were enabled to respond, we can love the unlovely. Remember that it is His love and not our own. It is not ours to withhold from those who He wills to love through us. Let it flow without our interference. We will benefit more than those who are the recipients.

“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…

“Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” Philippians 2:4 There is an interest that ought to be equal to our own. There is no way for one to know this because there is none that is able to tell that make sense to our intellect. Why should we not know this truth that defines us as humans in the likeness and image of God? It is because we are fashioned to consider our own needs and war to make good on what our own heart desires. Self-interest is the path of least resistance. But to resist selfishness without strength, will lead to a loathing within the soul with the feeling of neglect. One will feel as if he is forced to deny himself merely because of a legal standard, but deep within his soul he feel is not fair. One can only be deeply concerned about the interest of others as much as his own with help from above. It is only when the love of God is accepted is he be empowered to release His love. He has a selfless love to give as evidence that His…

And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.” (9) Be hospitable to one another without grumbling.1 Peter 4:8-9 Love does not ignore or deny the sin, but love loves in spite of the sin. There are some deeds that could make it difficult to love the one who has offended you. That is the true test of love when you are able to look beyond the offense and see the soul that is in a desperate place drifting in a direction away from God. Stephen understood this when he was being stoned to death. He cried out to God in the midst of their throwing stones at him “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” He wanted what was best for them even while they were venting their hatred against him. If this had not been the case, Saul the Pharisee who became Paul the Apostle would have never been saved and used in such a mighty way. God’s will is to use your enemies if they ever come to know Jesus Christ for who He is. But your release of them may pave the way for them to…