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The study of genetics provides evidence that each of us has behavioral traits that can be traced back to our ancestry. We are the product of many centuries of cultural attributes and evolving modifications of cultural norms. It is easy to accept ourselves as we are and expect others to do the same if we are completely satisfied ourselves and see no need for change. Can we be blamed for what dwells within us as a part of our lineage? Our desires and passions form our emotional frame and our personal agenda, the things that we pursue in life. The propensity towards a particular thing, if we research the history, will be discovered within a relative who was of the same persuasion, even if the trait was expressed differently. The origin of our genetics generated from first cause. The word “pater” in Latin means first cause or brought forth from. From this word we have paternal or father. Our first father, Adam sinned against God which set in motion a course of rebellion against Him. His rebellion was not part of his original formation but was introduced to him by another in whom it originated. Satan, who rebelled against God,…

“For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required” (Luke 12:48).  God expects a return on His investments. The gifts of God are given to each person in order for all to profit as the result of His distributions. It is not based on what most would consider as the criteria for God’s judgments. God is not equal in His judgments, but He is equitable. Grace is freely given, but God determines who will receive what is being distributed. Yet we may covet what we deem as necessary, but it must only be for the advancement of His kingdom and not our own. When our hearts yearn to do more for God and we feel powerless to fully participate with Him in what He wills to do, it is in order to seek Him for the empowering gifts that would further qualify us. Yet in our earnestness to receive, it does not obligate Him to any measure to give us what we consider to be necessary. He will give us what He knows is best for us as well as what’s best for others. But, the warning is not to frustrate the grace of God. What God…

“He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay” (Matthew 28:6).  He is absent from the place to which He had been carried. His lifeless body lay in a tomb without the strength to either participate or resist. There He was carried and placed by others. But on Resurrection Sunday, the grave was robbed of its victory. The empty tomb served as a witness that He was no longer there. His was not the result of being carried away, for many are absent because they have been carried away by something or someone. “He is risen, as He said.” His Word was confirmed by action. His promise was fulfilled thus giving even greater validity to all that He ever said. The evidence was presented, thus allowing every skeptic and naysayer to see with their own eyes His power to defy death, hell, and the grave. The angel invited them to come inside and see the very place that He once laid. Where a body once laid, and empty tomb reminds us of our own destinies. As we are in Christ Jesus, we too shall be made alive by the same…

“When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?” (Matthew 16:13).  What men say cannot change the nature of a person or a thing. It has to do with recognizing and agreeing with the truth. Those who know Him merely by reputation can only repeat what they have heard and never share their truest knowledge of Him. Those who see Him from afar and can only see His silhouette may describe it with accuracy without ever knowing those special features that give expression to His passion. Only those who have answered the call to come to Him; to come close enough to see His face will be able to share with others the intimate things that would ignite a fire within the hearts of others to know what they may otherwise would have never known. What they say is not as important as what you say. Jesus Christ came to be known, but not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. The resurrected Christ invites us to come closer and see the nail wounds in His hands that His love may be known through…

“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” (1John 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 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. We belong…

“Then Jesus went into the temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. And He said to them, ’It is written, My house shall be called a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves’ “(Matthew 21:12-17).  When Jesus arrived at the seat of both religious and political power, He confronted religious authorities as being “a den of thieves.” When Jerusalem was robbed of an environment conducive for spiritual renewal, their leaders were indicted by Jesus as thieves. Religious leaders were using their followers as merchandise to be traded for profit, and their souls were both hungry and lost. An atmosphere of greed reproduces after its own kind. It spreads like a contagious disease thus hindering those who would otherwise listen. They would rather gravitate in the direction of their instructions. Jesus did not approach the civic leaders first. He confronted religious leaders for their perverse ways. The house erected with the intent of worship must first become a house of prayer. If the priorities are misaligned, the activities will be dishonorable. The…

“Later a few religion scholars and Pharisees got on him. ’Teacher, we want to see your credentials. Give us some hard evidence that God is in this. How about a miracle?’ ” (Matthew 12:38).  Those who appear before men as authorities in relation to God’s order seldom recognize the fact that He refuses to restrict Himself to their expectations. Formulas and theorems of success do not work. He will withhold from them what they expected, but show forth the unexpected. These few that approached Him thought that He would be anxious to validate Himself before such an impressive crowd. But Jesus had nothing to prove. He was as sure of Himself then as He was when Satan tempted Him on the pinnacle of the Temple requesting Him to show off His divine powers. When we are asked to prove ourselves to be what we have been called by God to be, we must first recognize who it is that requires of us evidence. If not God by way of His Spirit, a prophetic word is sufficient. We live by what God has said and it serves as the basis for all He is now saying. If not by the Word…

 “Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to yo.” (Lk 6:38).  Giving enables us to see the dimensions and depths of the love of our Lord Jesus Christ. Without personal sacrifice, we merely theorize rather than experience what He offers us so freely. It is impossible to understand the dynamics of His message and the glory of His life without participating with Him in releasing those things left in our hands to manage. The Holy Spirit will direct us to channel all things to acquire the greatest benefit. True freedom is freedom from the bondage of sin bred in selfishness. What we have held too closely to has hindered the Lord from giving full expression of Himself to us. A freedom not yet experienced borne out of a need within us remains unmet. We were created to respond to God’s initiative in giving. None of what we manage is able to save our souls even though in the past we may have thought it would. True surrender is giving oneself completely…

“So he answered and said, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’ and ‘your neighbor as yourself’ ” (Lk 10:27). God gives us the strength to love. The heart is guided in a direction and the soul agrees to give full expression to that particular emotion. To love is not a miracle. It is a part of man’s nature to love. Without guidance the heart gravitates by default away from God. Loving then is not deliberate, but the result of some forceful habit that captures the mind and heart in order to condemn the soul. The passions must be harnessed by an object that is capable of containing all that is offered and reciprocate by providing what is desperately needed in return. When love gives but does not provide the person with what is needed, he eventually becomes bankrupt and bitter having been taken advantage of. Then love is inverted and transforms into hatred that is primarily directed towards the true Lover of his soul. They feel shortchanged having not received from Him what they needed, but refused to give Him what He…

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (Jas 4:8). There is much about God that is attractive. His attributes will have an appeal to every part of our being if we are made aware of them. The Holy Spirit will provide the faith to see and understand what is missing. The necessary things are offered to us to fulfill us providing both life and godliness. Without this faith we are left empty, reaching out for things around us and slipping deeper into despair. It is the distractions that allure us away from being drawn near to God. To be drawn to God is: empowered to resist the devil in all of his deceptive ways. The world, the flesh, and the devil no longer will control you once the beauty of God’s holiness is realized. He is the Lover of your soul and your soul will know this perfectly well. He draws us with cords of love. We are drawn in response with the assurance of faith. He restores us with a confidence that all is well because we abide in the secret place of God.