Forgive and Forget!

forgive and forgetRead this little story, and it made me think…

Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross, was reminded one day of a vicious deed that someone had done to her years before. But she acted as if she had never even heard of the incident. “Don’t you remember it?” her friend asked. “No,” came Barton’s reply, “I distinctly remember forgetting it.”

Luis Palau, Experiencing God’s Forgiveness, Multnomah Press, 1985
tyranny of tradition

Jesus commands us to forgive, but then what?

For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:

but if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
Forgiveness is a choice, but how do we move past the horror of what the other person has done?
Clara Barton figured it out, with a strong, disciplined mind.
She refused to allow the wickedness others did, to occupy her thought life.
unforgivess rent free
We are all pressing towards the mark of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus, or should be. This world is not our home, heaven is.
What happened yesterday, or yesteryear, cannot be allowed to dictate what we do today.
I like the way the apostle Paul said it:
forget

Philippians 3:

13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,

Here it is Christmas again, and families are getting together again. There are those that are ‘stuck like chuck’ in their traditions and who would hold you emotionally hostage to your past failures, or the brutality of what they have been allowed to do to you.

Forget it!

 

Act differently, and refuse to lower yourself to their level, no matter what they do.

It’s going to take the power of God to do…

Let’s pray:

‘Father, as I gather with family and friends this holiday, I refuse to be defined by my past, or theirs. I choose to forgive and forget their wrongs, and I choose to receive Your grace and strength, to not allow them to drag me down into their mess and guilt trips. I ask this, knowing I am heard and answered, for I ask in Your name Lord Jesus, Amen!”

Lee forgive

In his book. Lee: The Last Years, Charles Bracelen Flood reports that after the Civil War, Robert E. Lee visited a Kentucky lady who took him to the remains of a grand old tree in front of her house. There she bitterly cried that its limbs and trunk had been destroyed by Federal artillery fire. She looked to Lee for a word condemning the North or at least sympathizing with her loss. After a brief silence, Lee said, “Cut it down, my dear Madam, and forget it.” It is better to forgive the injustices of the past than to allow them to remain, let bitterness take root and poison the rest of our life.

Michael Williams

 

Forget it!

Clara Barton – Founder of Red Cross

Forget it!

Php 3:13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
forget
Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross, was reminded one day of a vicious deed that someone had done to her years before. But she acted as if she had never even heard of the incident. “Don’t you remember it?” her friend asked. “No,” came Barton’s reply, “I distinctly remember forgetting it.”

At this Christmas time, how well bitter waters would love to flow.

As families get together, and old friendships are renewed, how easy it is to remember past hurts, injustices, and wickedness that occurred, often years before. Time does not heal old wounds, forgiveness, prayer, and the love of God will.

You need to let some things go. You must forgive, and release those who betrayed you, It is time to move on. That was then, this is now. Let it go. There is joy and peace in it for you, even if they have not changed, and are still into the foolish wickedness that they did to you. Don’t become a door mat, and allow them to do it again, but don’t hold them hostage in your mind either, it only poisons you.
unforgiveness
Let’s pray:
‘Father, I forgive my friends and family for all of their wickedness against me. I choose to forget what they did to me, and to move on. Cleanse me, heal me, wash me from the filth of this, and deliver me from bitterness, in your name I pray Lord Jesus,Amen’

Living Words – Life from Above

This morning as I sought the Lord and prayed some of the promises from His Word, personalizing them and putting my name and the name of my family in them, I felt Holy Spirit accent certain words from this familiar passage, that encouraged me.

 

So, I thought I would have some fun, and pray these verses over you and your family today, in faith that Holy Spirit might meet with you personally today, and do these very accented things in your life today.

 

Here’s the verse:

 

Col 1:9 ¶  For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

10  That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;

11  Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;

12 ¶  Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:

13  Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:

14  In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:

 

Here’s the way I saw it this morning:

Col 1:9 ¶  For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray
col-pray
for you, and to desire
col-desire
that ye might be filled
col-filled
with the knowledge
col-knowledge
of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;
col-understand

10  That ye might walk worthy
col-walk-worthy
of the Lord
col-lord
unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing
col-increase
in the knowledge of God;

11  Strengthened
col-strength
with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and

longsuffering with joyfulness;
col-joy

12 ¶  Giving thanks
Thank You Jesus
unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:

13  Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:

14  In whom we have redemption
col-redemption
through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:

col-forgiveness
Join withe me and pray and proclaim:
heart1
So I Pray,

with fervent Desire, Holy Spirit FILL you with Divine Knowledge that would show you who you are as a royal child before His throne. That this Understanding would so encourage and Empower you, that you would square your shoulders back, and decide to Walk worthy of Jesus, King of all Kings, and Lord of all Lords,  and as a creation of the Creator of all things, would be constantly Increasing in revelation of who He is ALL-Mighty God of the universe, heaven and earth, and that you would be Strengthened by His ALL-Mightiness, His Power (that created the universe and raised Jesus from the dead). That this touch of heaven would so fill you with Joyfulness, that you laugh at adversity, the devil and all his tricks.  That in light of Jesus incredible Redemption and completion of our lives, we walk Gratefully, humbly, and confidently knowing that despite His great Holiness and searing glory, we have found Forgiveness of our sins. Amen.

Forgiving the Unforgiveable

This is a long story, but worth the read…

Forgiving the unforgivable

Steven Cole

Shortly after the turn of the century, Japan invaded, conquered, and occupied Korea. Of all of their oppressors, Japan was the most ruthless. They overwhelmed the Koreans with a brutality that would sicken the strongest of stomachs. Their crimes against women and children were inhuman. Many Koreans live today with the physical and emotional scars from the Japanese occupation.

One group singled out for concentrated oppression was the Christians. When the Japanese army overpowered Korea one of the first things they did was board up the evangelical churches and eject most foreign missionaries. It has always fascinated me how people fail to learn from history. Conquering nations have consistently felt that shutting up churches would shut down Christianity. It didn’t work in Rome when the church was established, and it hasn’t worked since. Yet somehow the Japanese thought they would have a different success record. The conquerors started by refusing to allow churches to meet and jailing many of the key Christian spokesmen. The oppression intensified as the Japanese military increased its profile in the South Pacific. The “Land of the Rising Sum” spread its influence through a reign of savage brutality. Anguish filled the hearts of the oppressed — and kindled hatred deep in their souls. One pastor persistently entreated his local Japanese police chief for permission to meet for services. His nagging was finally accommodated, and the police chief offered to unlock his church … for one meeting.

It didn’t take long for word to travel. Committed Christians starving for an opportunity for unhindered worship quickly made their plans. Long before dawn on that promised Sunday, Korean families throughout a wide area made their way to the church. They passed the staring eyes of their Japanese captors, but nothing was going to steal their joy. As they closed the doors behind them they shut out the cares of oppression and shut in a burning spirit anxious to glorify their Lord.

The Korean church has always had a reputation as a singing church. Their voices of praise could not be concealed inside the little wooden frame sanctuary. Song after song rang through the open windows into the bright Sunday morning. For a handful of peasants listening nearby, the last two songs this congregation sang seemed suspended in time. It was during a stanza of “Nearer My God to Thee” that the Japanese police chief waiting outside gave the orders. The people toward the back of the church could hear them when they barricaded the doors, but no one realized that they had doused the church with kerosene until they smelled the smoke. The dried wooden skin of the small church quickly ignited. Fumes filled the structure as tongues of flame began to lick the baseboard on the interior walls.

There was an immediate rush for the windows. But momentary hope recoiled in horror as the men climbing out the windows came crashing back in — their bodies ripped by a hail of bullets. The good pastor knew it was the end. With a calm that comes from confidence, he led his congregation in a hymn whose words served as a fitting farewell to earth and a loving salutation to heaven. The first few words were all the prompting the terrified worshipers needed. With smoke burning their eyes, they instantly joined as one to sing their hope and leave their legacy. Their song became a serenade to the horrified and helpless witnesses outside. Their words also tugged at the hearts of the cruel men who oversaw this flaming execution of the innocent.

Alas! and did my Savior bleed?

and did my Sovereign die?

Would he devote that sacred head

for such a worm as I?

Just before the roof collapsed they sang the last verse, their words an eternal testimony to their faith.

But drops of grief can ne’er repay

the debt of love I owe:

Here, Lord, I give myself away

‘Tis all that I can do!

At the cross, at the cross

Where I first saw the light,

And the burden of my heart rolled away —

It was there by faith I received my sight,

And now I am happy all the day.

The strains of music and wails of children were lost in a roar of flames. The elements that once formed bone and flesh mixed with the smoke and dissipated into the air. The bodies that once housed life fused with the charred rubble of a building that once housed a church. But the souls who left singing finished their chorus in the throne room of God. Clearing the incinerated remains was the easy part. Erasing the hate would take decades. For some of the relatives of the victims, this carnage was too much. Evil had stooped to a new low, and there seemed to be no way to curb their bitter loathing of the Japanese.

In the decades that followed, that bitterness was passed on to a new generation. The Japanese, although conquered, remained a hated enemy. The monument the Koreans built at the location of the fire not only memorialized the people who died, but stood as a mute reminder of their pain.

Inner rest? How could rest coexist with a bitterness deep as marrow in the bones? Suffering, of course, is a part of life. People hurt people. Almost all of us have experienced it at some time. Maybe you felt it when you came home to find that your spouse had abandoned you, or when your integrity was destroyed by a series of well-timed lies, or when your company was bled dry by a partner. It kills you inside. Bitterness clamps down on your soul like iron shackles.

The Korean people who found it too hard to forgive could not enjoy the “peace that passes all understanding.” Hatred choked their joy.

It wasn’t until 1972 that any hope came. A group of Japanese pastors traveling through Korea came upon the memorial. When they read the details of the tragedy and the names of the spiritual brothers and sisters who had perished, they were overcome with shame. Their country had sinned, and even though none of them were personally involved (some were not even born at the time of the tragedy), they still felt a national guilt that could not be excused.

They returned to Japan committed to right a wrong. There was an immediate outpouring of love from their fellow believers. They raised ten million yen ($25,000). The money was transferred through proper channels and a beautiful white church building was erected on the sight of the tragedy. When the dedication service for the new building was held, a delegation from Japan joined the relatives and special guests. Although their generosity was acknowledged and their attempts at making peace appreciated, the memories were still there. Hatred preserves pain. It keeps the wounds open and the hurts fresh. The Koreans’ bitterness had festered for decades. Christian brothers or not, these Japanese were descendants of a ruthless enemy.

The speeches were made, the details of the tragedy recalled, and the names of the dead honored. It was time to bring the service to a close. Someone in charge of the agenda thought it would be appropriate to conclude with the same two songs that were sung the day the church was burned. The song leader began the words to “Nearer My God to Thee.” But something remarkable happened as the voices mingled on the familiar melody. As the memories of the past mixed with the truth of the song, resistance started to melt. The inspiration that gave hope to a doomed collection of churchgoers in a past generation gave hope once more. The song leader closed the service with the hymn “At the Cross.”

The normally stoic Japanese could not contain themselves. The tears that began to fill their eyes during the song suddenly gushed from deep inside. They turned to their Korean spiritual relatives and begged them to forgive. The guarded, calloused hearts of the Koreans were not quick to surrender. But the love of the Japanese believers — unintimidated by decades of hatred — tore at the Koreans’ emotions.

At the cross, at the cross

Where I first saw the light,

And the burden of my heart rolled away …

One Korean turned toward a Japanese brother. Then another. And then the floodgates holding back a wave of emotion let go. The Koreans met their new Japanese friends in the middle. They clung to each other and wept. Japanese tears of repentance and Korean tears of forgiveness intermingled to bathe the site of an old nightmare.

Heaven had sent the gift of reconciliation to a little white church in Korea.

Tim Kimmel, Little House on the Freeway, pp. 56-61

Salvation! Eternal Life!

Salvation! Eternal Life!
Chris Karen Walsh's photo.

Rom 10: 9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Chris Karen Walsh's photo.

Steps to Salvation:
1. Hear the gospel cause faith only comes by hearing.
2. Believe it. Jesus died for our sins, God raised Him from the dead.
3. Receive it! We do this by confessing, speak it.

This is eternal life, your sins forgiven, adoption into the family of God, and a journey of faith and love, that is out of this world!

The thief had nails through both hands, so that he could not work; and a nail through each foot, so that he could not run errands for the Lord; he could not lift a hand or a foot toward his salvation, and yet Christ offered him the gift of God; and he took it. Christ threw him a passport, and took him into Paradise.
D. L. Moody, “Day by Day with D.L Moody,” Moody Press.
Chris Karen Walsh's photo.

Salvation depends upon Christ’s work for us, while rewards depend upon our works for Christ.
Milburn Cockrell.

Let’s Pray:
“Father, I choose to believe that Jesus is my Lord, that you raised Him from the dead! I receive you Jesus into my heart and life, and accept my position in your family and your kingdom, the life I was created to live! Thank you Faither, thank you Jesus, Come on Holy Spirit, let’s go! Amen’

Chris Karen Walsh's photo.

Check the facts Jack!

Check the Facts Jack!

 ‘Gossip is the most deadly microbe. It has neither legs nor wings. It is composed entirely of tales, and most of them have stings.’

Morris Mandel in Bits & Pieces, June, 1990, p. 22

 gossip slither

Recently, we went through a wonderful trial, that occurred when another person accused us of some financial mismanagement, that was totally untrue. Gossip is like a serpents venom, it poisons people against you, and may take years to rebuild trust in relationships.

Just because ‘Everyone is saying it’, does not make it true!

The Bible says we are kings and priest unto God, and we must conduct ourselves as royalty!

Proverbs 16:10

A divine sentence is in the lips of the king: his mouth transgresseth not in judgment.

As leaders we hear a lot of stories, and we need to judge not only actions, but motives. Had a situation last year, where we wanted to donate to a certain ministry, and one of the businesses needed to know exactly where the building materials donated were going. So, I sent him an email with the ministers name and location of the construction project we were planning, because he grew up in that state, and knew the area. Seems another person who ‘wanted to get involved’ asked for the material list I sent my former client, so I sent it to them. They got involved alright, instead of helping, they accused me of ‘taking up offerings in the name of the other ministry’, and then spread the ‘rumor’ of this to many, many other ministries. I could not believe they had done this, so I attempted to meet with them, to discuss it, but they have not returned telephone calls nor emails since then.

shark back

As far as I’m concerned, I have forgiven them, and am aggressively using my faith to believe the best of them, and for them, declaring these two verses over their lives:

Philippians 1:6

Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

Philippians 2:13

For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

Faith works by love, and so I am using my faith on purpose for their growth and instruction in the things of God.

faith works by love

Check the facts before you judge leader, it is for your glory and promotion.

Proverbs 25:2

It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter.

glory conceal

In the midst of my particular trial, I had a good friend of mine, who is studying to be a rabbi, who lives in Jerusalem, call me. I told him what I was going through, and he said, “Interesting. Chris, did you know that here, in Israel, we take character assassination of more consequence than even murder? He then reminded me of a story I had heard before, he had heard in synagogue:

If you don’t say it, they can’t repeat it. Yiddish folklore offers a telling tale about gossip-makers. One such man had told so many malicious untruths about the local rabbi that, overcome by remorse, he begged the rabbi to forgive him. “And, Rabbi, tell me how I can make amends.” The rabbi sighed, “Take two pillows, go to the public square and there cut the pillows open. Wave them in the air. Then come back.” The rumormonger quickly went home, got two pillows and a knife, hastened to the square, cut the pillows open, waved them in the air and hastened back to the rabbi’s chambers. “I did just what you said, Rabbi!” “Good.” The rabbi smiled. “Now, to realize how much harm is done by gossip, go back to the square…” “And?” “And collect all your feathers.”

From Hooray for Yiddish.

gossip feathers

Looks like the work of this person has blown feathers all over America. Gotta believe the blood of Jesus can wash away their mess…I need to believe what I preach!

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2015/05/14/how-to-defeat-gossip/

think1

Here are a couple of thoughts, before speaking and decision making:

I once formed a mutual encouragement fellowship at a time of stress in one of my pastorates. The members subscribed to a simple formula applied before speaking of any person or subject that was perhaps controversial.

T–Is it true? H–Is it helpful? I–Is it inspiring? N–Is it necessary? K–Is it kind?

If what I am about to say does not pass those tests, I will keep my mouth shut! And it worked!

Alan Redpath, A Passion for Preaching.

God loves You

God is love, and He will work it all out, as only He can.

Let’s pray:

‘Father, I come before you, determined to walk free from offense, and in Your love. Give me grace to see correctly into situations, and before I judge, to investigate to see what is being done, and why. May I victoriously obey you, and press forward towards the mark of the high calling in Christ Jesus, Amen.’

We are not all brothers and sisters unless….

last days

Not everyone is our brother or sister:

Mark 3:(NKJV)

Jesus’ Mother and Brothers Send for Him

31 Then His brothers and His mother came, and standing outside they sent to Him, calling Him. 32 And a multitude was sitting around Him; and they said to Him, “Look, Your mother and Your brothers[a] are outside seeking You.”

33 But He answered them, saying, “Who is My mother, or My brothers?” 34 And He looked around in a circle at those who sat about Him, and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! 35 For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother.”

Unless we are born-again, and adopted into the family of God, we are not brothers or sisters in the kingdom of God.

John 1:12 (AKJV)

12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

Acts 4:(AKJV)

12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Going to church won’t make you part of the family or kingdom of God, only adoption and submission to the rule of the king: Jesus is Lord.

Have you received Him?

If you need more information on how to do this, please read:

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/the-gospel-the-power-of-god/

Let’s Pray:

‘Father, I choose to believe that Jesus is God the Son, risen from the dead, seated at Your right hand, second person of the Trinity. I ask the You would forgive my sins, and Lord Jesus, I receive your offer of forgiveness, and eternal life. I choose to submit to Your kingship, lordship and majesty, and ask Sir, for You to reveal Your highest and best purpose for my life, and give me strength and grace to do it. Amen’

For prayer, comments, or to donate online:

Email: chris.aomministries@gmail.com

paypal

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Give in faith!

1 Corinthians 9:11 If we have sown [the seed of] spiritual good among you, [is it too] much if we reap from your material benefits?

1 Corinthians 9:14 [On the same principle] the Lord directed that those who publish the good news (the Gospel) should live (get their maintenance) by the Gospel.

Paul goes on to say, that he did not use his position as a minister of the gospel to take up offerings, rather he worked, making tents, to support himself. You might notice here, that Paul was not married, nor did he have children. Family responsibilities take time, and just as you bust a move on your job to provide for your family, I work every bit as hard, doing this, faithful to the Lord in prayer and the ministry of His Word, to you.

I will never charge for this: it my responsibility to God, my calling. Freely I have been given, now, I freely give…

As you give, hear Holy Spirit what to give, and honestly expect God to reward you for your giving.

Matt 10: 41 He who receives and welcomes and accepts a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.

I am a five-fold ministry gift and office – this is my life – I pray, I hear, I write, and wonderful things happen. You have your job description, I have mine – this is mine….

I have ‘see through’ faith for you, in this: Gal 3: 9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

I believe I have a responsibility before God to be like Jesus, in every offering I receive. I receive it with thanksgiving, just like Jesus did the little boys lunch.

Then, because I walk and live by faith according to the blessing of Abraham, I believe that God will take your seed sown, and multiply it, according to what the blessing of Abraham promises:

Genesis 22:17 In blessing I will bless you and in multiplying I will multiply your descendants like the stars of the heavens and like the sand on the seashore. And your Seed (Heir) will possess the gate of His enemies

It has been a joy to me, to see the hand of the living God act in the lives of those of you who have supported us this year!

Many have seen tremendous blessing come into your households, and for this we give thanks, and give Jesus all the glory!

Five Gifts to give, that do not cost money!

I heard this at church from Pastor Bruce Edwards at Victory Christian Center, but today as I was reviewing my To Do: lists, I feel to blast it out there on my blog, as it is a good word!

Five things you can give, that do not cost money:

  1. The Gift of Listening – It has been said that we have two ears and one mouth, that we should be quick to hear, and slow to speak, yet how many people actually take time to listen intently to another person? Listening, is a gift.

listen12.   Laughter – Joy – Smiles are free, and are usually returned. Smile! Laugh! Light up others lives with your passion and joy! It has been medically proven to lengthen your lifespan. Jesus laughs a lot, so should we!

Joy13.    Favor – You can give others favor. Help them. Zig Zigler’ famous quote: ‘If I help enough other people fulfill their dreams, God will look after mine. Doesn’t cost anything to believe the best of others, give them favor, and you will be surprised how God gives you favor with the right people too.

thank you for favor4.   Encouragement – We all need courage, to simply face the daily challenges we all face. To speak boldly into the lives of others, inspiring bravery and courage is a gift. Give it, cause we all need it!

courage fireman5.    Mercy and Forgiveness – Forgiveness has been called ‘the gift that sets the captive free, only to discover, that the captive, was you.’ Unforgiveness is like drinking poison and hoping your enemy will die!’ We can choose to forgive, and let people go free. No, they don’t deserve it, but neither do we. God forgives us freely through the shed blood of Jesus, then commands us to forgive others. The only thing stronger than the will of God, is the free-will of man. Forgive, you think you are giving others a gift on this one, but will quickly discover, that the gift is truly being given to you, as God pulls the poison out of our hearts, and literally recreates that which has been lost, stolen and destroyed.

Love Mercy

Let’s Pray:

‘Father, help us to listen, laugh, grant favor, encourage others, and forgive and show mercy to others, today, and every day, that You would listen to our prayers, laugh with us and give us joy,  grant us favor, encourage us, forgive and have mercy upon us. We ask this, knowing we are heard, for we ask in Your name Lord Jesus, Amen.’

Did Jesus Give the 2nd Amendment?

 

Should a Christian own a gun for self defense?

arms children

Answer: What does the Word of God say?

Luke 22: 35 And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing.

Lu 22:36 Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

arms Jesus

Here we see Jesus at the last supper, giving some final instructions to His disciples in his last teaching before He left the earth..I picture what that might have looked like. You know that a cloak to keep warm was pretty important during that season, because when Peter betrayed Jesus, people were huddled around a fire for warmth, yet Jesus said that procuring a sword was more important than even wearing a winter coat!

He sees the future, and sees that disciples are about to be sent into all the world, to preach the gospel. They had been sent originally to the Jews, who had hospitality laws, and had been provided for, in safety, wherever they went, but now, the great commission was to be given, and people without the Word of God as a basic premise of life, are dangerous. As He prepared to send them, he said you were going to need a weapon for self defense, in fact, He expected that everyone should know this and should own a sword. Yet his command is more urgent than mere passive fancy. If you do not have a weapon to defend yourself, get one, even if you need to sell your coat to buy it. Well, one of the disciples took this literally, and went out and procured a couple of swords.

Let’s continue reading in Luke 22:verse38 And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, It is enough.

These swords were not needed yet, for Jesus knew He was to be crucified, and it was not time to fight, yet.

Peter, as usual, was the impetuous one. He had a sword, and a weapon in ones hand, just like a young man with a gun, makes a man feel powerful. Peter had some radical life changes in his years walking with Jesus, and with a sword in hand, he was ready to go to war on behalf of his king. Remember, the Jews were expecting a conquering king like David to lead them into battle to overthrow the Romans.

Yet, Jesus kingdom is a kingdom not of this world, a kingdom of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Jesus needed no mere human disciple to defend Him: He is Lord of Heaven and Earth, He could have simply called 12 legions of angels to defend him, but He was determined to die on our behalf, willingly, for the sin of all humanity. There was no other way.

John 10:17-18
17 Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.
No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.

Lets continue reading the account here in Luke 22:47 ¶ And while he yet spake, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near unto Jesus to kiss him.

48 But Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?

49 When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?

50 And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.

51 And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far. And he touched his ear, and healed him.

52 Then Jesus said unto the chief priests, and captains of the temple, and the elders, which were come to him, Be ye come out, as against a thief, with swords and staves?

So, we see here the two swords brought into the last supper meeting. Peter had one, and in passion and zeal, when Jesus was betrayed, and the soldiers came to arrest him, he acted impetuously, and cut off Malacus ear. Jesus, loving and understanding Peter, and the servant, healed the guys ear. In the natural order of things, He destroyed evidence, because Peter would have been charged with the equivalent of assaulting an officer, and been imprisoned or executed. Kind of hard to charge a guy, when there is no evidence. Can you see this case before a judge “This guy attacked me with a sword, and cut off my ear, your honour!” Well, where is the wound, says the judge. Well, this guy named Jesus, healed me, and miraculously recreated my ear back on my head. Yeah, riiiiiight! We don’t do this miracle thing you speak of, case dismissed.

Yet, there was another sword there that day, and Jesus is Lord, with obedient disciples, ultimate commander in chief of all the armies of the earth, Lord of heaven and earth.

arms Jesus is Lord

Who held the other sword? I’m not sure, but I think it had to be John, the apostle of love, because look at the interaction in the heat of battle:

Lu 22:49 When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?

This should be the heart of every soldier and police officer on the planet. Shall I smite with the sword?

Lord, should I shoot? A man under firstly divine authority, and secondly natural authority. A man under command, under orders. This brother recognized Jesus as more than Saviour, but as commander in chief of all the armies that have ever marched.

You need to understand the mindset of this brother when he asked Jesus the question, ‘Shall we smite with the sword.’. His mind was instructed with the Torah, the mighty exploits of David who slew Goliath, and then there were David’s mighty men, men of courage, valor, warriors.

Here is a sample of a couple of them:

1 Sam 23:

These are the names of the mighty men whom David had: Josheb-basshebeth, a Tahchemonite, chief of the Three [heroes], known also as Adino the Eznite; he wielded his spear and went against 800 men, who were slain at one time.

Next to him among the three mighty men was Eleazar son of Dodo, son of Ahohi. He was with David when they defied the Philistines assembled there for battle, and the men of Israel had departed.

10 [Eleazar] arose and struck down the Philistines until his hand was weary and clung to the sword. The Lord wrought a great deliverance and victory that day; the men returned after him only to take the spoil.

11 Next to [Eleazar] was Shammah son of Agee the Hararite. The Philistines were gathered at Lehi on a piece of ground full of lentils; and the [Israelites] fled from the Philistines.

12 But he stood in the midst of the ground and defended it and slew the Philistines; and the Lord wrought a great victory.

This brother, with one sword, now stood before an armed trained military unit, and he as the Lord for orders to open fire. He was convinced that if that order was given, he would not only attack, but wipe them all out: single-handedly if necessary!

Makes Rambo, and all those hero movies kind of pale in comparison, because this isn’t Hollywood, this is a true story.

If you are a soldier or police officer, or any type of law enforcement, you need to recognize that there is a greater authority, than even the government you serve. Jesus Christ is Lord, and He will speak to you what to do, even in battle:

John 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: 28 and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

Even with bullets flying, and men screaming and dying around you, He will speak to you, personally, in your heart, what to do, when and where to fire, who to kill, who to let live

.arms sheepSoldiers in combat, led of the Holy Spirit will be divinely empowered to stop evil attacks both from within or without.

Blessed be the Lord my strength which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:
The Lord is a warrior, make no mistake about it.
Yet, in this new covenant: He would have us win our battles like He did, in prayer, in faith, with His Word:

Remember the account of Elisha hearing the directions of God, to thwart every evil attack against Israel. The Spirit of God, literally revealed the battle strategies of the enemy army, to the king. So detailed was this knowledge, that the king was convinced there had to be a spy in their midst.

2Ki 6:12 And one of his servants said, None, my lord, O king: but Elisha, the prophet that is in Israel, telleth the king of Israel the words that thou speakest in thy bedchamber.

Consider the following testimony from one of our US soldiers, serving in Afganistan, who had a mother who is a pastor, and who prayed for him daily, for protection and guidance. The man was trained as a sniper, and the story goes that they were on a routine patrol, when they came to a Taliban check point. There was a father and 12 year old son there, dressed in traditional garb, with flowing robes. The soldier claims that he heard a voice supernaturally speak to his heart, “Shoot the boy!” He immediately drew his weapon, and shot and killed the boy. When the father reached inside his tunic, he again fired, and shot and killed the father. There was immediate chaos, shouting, screaming, he was thrown to the ground and disarmed by his buddies, and there was an armed stand-off while his commanding officer order a cease-fire and investigated the bodies. Both of them were strapped as suicide bombers, waiting to enter the center of the platoon before detonating themselves. Clearly, many lives were spared that day, through the prayers of a woman of God, and the radical obedience of her highly trained son.

This kind of hearing and obedience, can prevent a soldier from responding to erroneous orders from even his own commanding officer, should his leader miss it. Each of us have to live with our own conscience before God, and killing a man is not a light thing to have to live with. I have had to minister to veterans that were given orders to open fire upon innocent civilians, the nightmares of children ripped apart by a 50 calibre still haunt them. Yet, Jesus heals PSTD – https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/12/11/post-traumatic-stress-disorder-jesus-heals/

Much needs to be said here, about the heart of self defense, but Proverbs 16: 32 Better a patient person than a warrior,

one with self-control than one who takes a city.

God’s kingdom is within us, and the fruit of the Spirit within us are the strength and honor of this country. Self-control, meekness (strength under pressure), longsuffering, gentleness, patience. This is the heart of honor, the heart of the gospel, and the heart of America, that Jesus is developing in each of us. This is the love of God, and freedom worth defending.

This is the spirit of the 2nd Amendment, in right to bear arms. Should free citizens be allowed to own firearms to protect themselves, their families, and this country from enemies within or without. Emphatically, YES!

arms Norris

The question is, what is our intimacy with God like? Are we governed by the Word and Spirit of God, seeking to love our fellow man, as our primary motive?

What makes weapons dangerous, are the people that wield them. A trained, honorable police man or soldier, upholding that which is decent, honorable, and lawful, is entitled and responsible to carry a gun, responsibly. In fact, the Bible says that soldiers and police officers serving Jesus, are ministers of God, set in place by God to execute God’s justice upon the evil doer.

Romans 13:1-8 Authorized (King James)

13 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. (government) For there is no power (authority) but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: for he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.

Notice here, that police officers are sent of God to do good for those of us doing right, yet for criminals, the police or military becomes the avenger to execute wrath on him that does evil.

arms call

It is when fatherless men, walking in pride, arrogance, and often a drug and alcohol induced lifestyle, own guns that we have problems.

Children should be taught to pray for God’s protection and given training in gun safety at a young age, that the best fight is the one that never starts. Any honest parent wants peace…

Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.

One last thought from Romans 13, where the Word of God speaks about the role of police officers and soldiers acting as the agents of God, to keep order and peace in a country.

Rom 13:1 ¶ Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.

3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:

4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.

Basically, this verse states that we need to obey the laws of the land, and submit to the authority of righteous government, (and pray for them daily 1 Tim 2:1-4). Yet, see how this works: Policemen and soldiers are actually called of God as his ministers to prevent the spread of evil in the earth. (and our taxes should legitimately support them)

As a husband and father, I am responsible to act like Jesus, and to love, serve, and lead my family into the call and plan of God for our particular household. Yet, I am also called to defend my wife and children, if necessary. Primarily, this is done solely through the Word of God. I believe the 91st Psalm, and that no weapon (knife, gun, or bomb) fashioned against me shall prosper. This is our primary defense, and best defense for we are in a spiritual battle, where we wrestle not against flesh and blood.

We know that Satan is a mind blinding spirit, that works through the thoughts and deeds of people who are not walking with Jesus. The nature of Satan, is to kill, steal and destroy whoever, and whatever he can. He puts thoughts of ‘Go rob that house, that person, etc”, but for a tithing believer, walking in faith, God becomes our rock of defense, impenetrable.

arms strong

When we deal with the spirit behind the wicked man, the man is no problem.

If more Christians, actually did what Jesus said to do in Matt 6:33, and sought first the kingdom of God daily, and served Jesus every day, there would be far less violence in the world, and our primary warfare would be spiritual, and our focus would be on preaching the gospel to all the nations, not ruling over them with a gun.

1 Tim 2: I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.

3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;

4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;

I actually believe these verses, and I pray for our President (even when I do not agree with him), our government, military, police officers, and judicial system, daily. Why?

1. The man that wrote this, Paul, heard God,  loved us, and had our best interests at heart.

2. He said to do this first.

3. When we pray for the government, I believe God will honor this very word in our lives, and supernaturally grant us the reward of our obedience, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.

Yet, I had an experience some time ago, where we found our front door wide open in the wee hours of the morning. Guess we woke up, and the perpetrator ran off in the night. I now have a gun in the closet, that I honestly pray I will never have to use.

arms regan

Shooting and killing someone is a rather permanent, and if you believe the Word of God, an eternal solution to a temporary problem, yet there are lines that cannot be crossed.

Someone breaking into a families house, has crossed that line, and just met the government of God, the right to bear arms in defense of our homes and families.

If called upon, I would shoot and kill an intruder, for I will protect my home, wife and children.

This is the heart of taking up the sword. We do not go out to conquer with it, but when enemies arise to destroy our homes and families, we will defend our freedom, come what may, here in the land of the free, home of the brave, where there is freedom, liberty, and justice for al

As Christians, we look for, pray for, and long for peace, for Jesus is the Prince of Peace. First in our hearts, then in our homes, communities and nation.

Our nature is love, and we long to forgive and turn the other cheek, but we meekness is not weakness. When evil people march, and begin slaughtering innocent civilians, women and children, then we are forced to rise up and defend our families and communities, our country.

arms vengeance

This is our heart, to trust God for true vengeance, but when evil empires march, they quickly discover that God goes to war:arms subcontract

Each day I pray:

Psalm 91 Authorized (King James) Version (AKJV)

Psalm 91

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High
shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress:
my God; in him will I trust.
Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler,
and from the noisome pestilence.
He shall cover thee with his feathers,
and under his wings shalt thou trust:
his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.
Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night;
nor for the arrow that flieth by day;
nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness;
nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.
A thousand shall fall at thy side,
and ten thousand at thy right hand;
but it shall not come nigh thee.

Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold
and see the reward of the wicked.
Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge,
even the most High, thy habitation;
10 there shall no evil befall thee,
neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.
11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee,
to keep thee in all thy ways.
12 They shall bear thee up in their hands,
lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder:
the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him:
I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.
15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him:
I will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him, and honour him.
16 With long life will I satisfy him,
and shew him my salvation.

In whatever station of life we find ourselves, we must be trusting in Jesus personally, intimately for our protection. Yet, sometimes, Jesus calls free men to pick up the sword.

freedom

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Let’s Pray:

‘Father God, I come to you now, seeking you for wisdom, peace, and protection. I choose to believe that You have indeed given your angels charge over me, and in Jesus I receive peace. Father, I desire to forgive and love all people, yet embrace my God given responsibility to protect my family and this nation from those who would do evil. By faith, I declare and decree Your Kingdom, in righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost over this country, trusting You to bring true freedom, liberty and justice for all. I ask this, knowing I am heard and answered, for I ask in Your name Lord Jesus, Amen’

For prayer, comments, or to donate online:

Email: chris.aomministries@gmail.com

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Give in faith!

1 Corinthians 9:11 If we have sown [the seed of] spiritual good among you, [is it too] much if we reap from your material benefits?

1 Corinthians 9:14 [On the same principle] the Lord directed that those who publish the good news (the Gospel) should live (get their maintenance) by the Gospel.

Paul goes on to say, that he did not use his position as a minister of the gospel to take up offerings, rather he worked, making tents, to support himself. You might notice here, that Paul was not married, nor did he have children. Family responsibilities take time, and just as you bust a move on your job to provide for your family, I work every bit as hard, doing this, faithful to the Lord in prayer and the ministry of His Word, to you.

I will never charge for this: it my responsibility to God, my calling. Freely I have been given, now, I freely give…

As you give, hear Holy Spirit what to give, and honestly expect God to reward you for your giving.

Matt 10: 41 He who receives and welcomes and accepts a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.

I am a five-fold ministry gift and office – this is my life – I pray, I hear, I write, and wonderful things happen. You have your job description, I have mine – this is mine….

I have ‘see through’ faith for you, in this: Gal 3: 9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

I believe I have a responsibility before God to be like Jesus, in every offering I receive. I receive it with thanksgiving, just like Jesus did the little boys lunch.

Then, because I walk and live by faith according to the blessing of Abraham, I believe that God will take your seed sown, and multiply it, according to what the blessing of Abraham promises:

Genesis 22:17 In blessing I will bless you and in multiplying I will multiply your descendants like the stars of the heavens and like the sand on the seashore. And your Seed (Heir) will possess the gate of His enemies

It has been a joy to me, to see the hand of the living God act in the lives of those of you who have supported us this year!

Many have seen tremendous blessing come into your households, and for this we give thanks, and give Jesus all the glory!

The Switchman

The Switchman

switchman swing bridge

 

There was a man who worked for the railway as a switchman. He lived at the edge of a river, alongside the tracks. The river had a swinging railway bridge that remained open most of the time to let the ships go through. When a train came, the control office would radio ahead to the switchman, who would go out to his little switching shack at the side of the tracks, to sound the horn to stop shipping, and swing the bridge into place so the passenger train could cross. This happened twice a day, and became a routine for everyone involved. Some days, the switchman would allow his three-year-old son to sit in the shack with him, gently holding him on his knee, while he operated the levers. When the afternoon passenger train arrived, together they would hold hands at the side of the tracks and wave at the passengers as the huge train thundered across the bridge. The father loved his son, and they loved to spend time together.

As time went on, the bridge began to decay, and the locking mechanism on the far side of the river began to malfunction. When this happened, the switchman could walk across the bridge, and put his shoulder into a huge lever, that manually locked the bridge in place. One day, as usual, the switchman got the radio call announcing the afternoon passenger express. In the prescribed fashion, he sounded the foghorns stopping the shipping traffic, and activated the switch to swing the huge old bridge into place. Slowly, it swung across the river, and as had happened before, it refused to lock into place. Looking around, the man saw no sign of his little boy, so he began the walk across the river to manually lock the bridge. As he proceeded across, he heard the train whistle, coming around the bend. “I’m not moving as fast as usual,” he thought, but there was still time. He began to hurry, reaching the other side, as the train came into view barreling down the tracks. Sweating, catching his breath, he sighed “Phew, made it”. As he grabbed hold of the lever, he realized the train was close now, but he still had time. As he put his shoulder behind the lever, he heard a sound that made his blood curl. “Daddy”. In horror, he looked up to see his son walking across the tracks to be with him. The train was pounding on, and suddenly, he realized there was no time to do anything. He had to make a decision. Either lock the bridge, and have the train make it across safely, or leave it unlocked, and have the train plummet into the river, in which case his own son would surely die. With a cry of anguish, he flung the lever into place, and the hurtling train instantly crushed his son beneath its weight. He fell to his knees, crushed beneath the horror of what he’d done. The train conductor and the passengers stood up to wave, totally oblivious to the kneeling, weeping man at the side of the tracks. The train went on its way, and the man picked up the broken, crushed body of his son, and headed home to tell his wife.

switchman

Picture if you will the anguish of that man as he carried the body of his son back across that bridge that night. That is a picture of the heart of Father God, when another Son died for you and for me, 2000 years ago on a cross. His anguish caused the earth to split, and the sky to become as black as night. How many of us, are like the passengers on that train, oblivious to the incredible price that was paid for each of our lives when Jesus died on the cross in our stead.

The question now is simple: How comfortable are you with your neighbor going to hell?

Jesus is the only way to heaven, there is no other way to be forgiven our sins…

Perhaps, you are the only one they might listen to, please tell them.

I’m going to make it really easy for you: Simply cut and paste this link, and send it to them….

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/the-gospel-the-power-of-god/

switchman you are