About EarsToHear.net

Discovering the Biblical Kingdom of God, Jesus & Holy Spirit

America's Choice: Constitutional Republic or Democrat-Socialism?

"Man will ultimately be governed by God or by tyrants." (Benjamin Franklin)  

     

The Christian Calling

Y'shua said to them again "Peace be with you: just as the Father sent Me, so I am sending you." --John 20:21

Yet if you warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul. --Ezekiel 3:18-21
Do you not say, 'There are still four months and then comes the harvest.' Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!" --John 4:35
“Battle stations, battle stations! All hands man your battle stations! This is NOT a drill. I say again, this is NOT a drill! --Ron Helle

Contents

Servants of Christ: Laborers & Cost of Discipleship

Exhortation

Representatives & Ambassadors of the King of Kings

Do Not Become Weary in Well-Doing

 

"Salt of the earth" & "Light of the world" --Matthew 5:13,16

 

"Hot or Cold?" Faith vs. fear and doubt.

"So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth." (Revelation 3:16).

See also: The Cost and the twisting of Scripture of "Do not judge."



Servants of Christ: Laborers & Cost of Discipleship

Jesus never told us to go into all the world and preach the gospel of salvation. He said to preach the gospel of the Kingdom. ...There's a difference between getting to heaven and heaven getting into us. The gospel of salvation is getting to heaven; the gospel of the Kingdom is allowing heaven to get into us! --Todd White

John 17:20-26 - [Jesus] I do not ask concerning them only, but also concerning those who believe in Me because of the disciples' message, so that all would be one, just as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also would be in Us, so that the world would believe that You sent Me. And I have given them the glory which You have given to Me, so that they would be one just as We are One: I in them and You in Me, so that they would have been brought into unity, so that the world would know that You sent Me and You loved them just as You loved Me. Father, the One Who gave to Me, I want that where I am those would be with Me, so that they would see My glory, which You have given to Me because You loved Me before the foundation of the world. Righteous Father, even though the world did not know You, but I did know You, and these knew that You sent Me: and I made Your name known to them and I shall make known, so that the love with which You loved Me would be in them and I would be in them.

Luke 14:28 - For which of you, intending to build a tower, sits not down first, and counts the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?

Luke 10:2 - Therefore said He unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth laborers into his harvest. 

John 12:24-26 - "I [Y'shua] most definitely say to you, unless a grain of wheat would die when it falls to the earth, it only remains itself: but if it would die, it brings much fruit. The one who loves his life loses it, and the one who hates his life in this world will keep it in eternal life. If someone would serve Me, he must continually follow Me, and where I AM there also will My servant be: if someone would serve Me the Father will honor him."

1 Corinthians 3:6-9 - I planted, Apollos watered, but God caused it to grow: so it is not the one who plants and it is not the one who waters who is anything, but God is the One Who causes growth. The one who plants and also the one who waters are equal, and each will take his own reward according to his own toil: for we are fellow workers of God, you are cultivated fields of God, a building of God.

2 Timothy 2:14-15 - You must continually recall to mind these things being charged before God, not to dispute about words, which does nothing beneficial, but is to the ruin of the listeners. You must now be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, teaching the doctrine of the Truth correctly and directly.  

Ezekiel 3:18-21 - When I say unto the wicked, You shall surely die; and you give him not warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Yet if you warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul. Again, When a righteous man does turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumblingblock before him, he shall die: because you have not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Nevertheless if you warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he does not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also you hast delivered thy soul. 

Colossians 4:5-6  - "Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time. Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man."

Exhortation

"I am not moved by what I see. I am not moved by what I feel. I am moved by what I believe." --Kenneth Hagin

"By trusting we understand that the worlds were created by a spoken Word of God (Psalms 33:6, 104:5, Job 38:4, Hebrews 11:3), so that what is seen has not come out of things which ere visible." --Hebrews 11:3. 


'A Broken and Contrite Heart' - BY Ray Ronney Jr. ...And this is where many among us seem to have abandoned common sense. The church is not called to help sinners accept an accommodating God. Rather, the church is called to utilize the power of the Holy Spirit to bring about inner transformation that makes the sinner acceptable to God! ...Again, I would ask, "how did He manage to find Himself on a cross if He was known for being loving and accepting?"
   ...Which prophet in the Old Testament did not address sin and the dire consequences that would occur if repentance did not take place? That's right, none of them. Read Stephen's speech in Acts 7:2-53. They didn't make him the first Christian martyr because he counseled love and acceptance. And then there are the apostles. All of them were victims of violence and died rather nasty deaths and it wasn't for sharing the love and acceptance of God. Pick up a copy of Foxe;s Book of Martyrs. You know from the title what you are about to read. Obeying God has never been popular or easy.    ... For goodness' sake, just a few sentences beyond the most famous verse in the Bible (John 3:16) we read, "And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil (John 3:19). So even after conveying that "God so loved the world," Jesus still felt it necessary to address sin and judgment. ...I am not advocating a steady diet of hell and judgment minus grace and forgiveness. But it is no healthier to advocate love and acceptance without wrath and judgment.
   ... It is not any pastor's or church's job to get people to feel good about themselves. Rather, "we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God" (2 Cor. 5:20). Now, how in the world does telling someone that God accepts them just as they are, comporting with a message of reconciliation? It doesn't.

"Catch It by the Tail" - By Dr. Ray Rooney Jr. - The call to obey God is not in the form of a question. ...Now we come to [Exodus] chapter 4 and Moses finally addressed the elephant in the room: But behold, they will not believe me or listen to my voice, for they will say, "The Lord did not appear to you" (Exodus 4:1).  That seems fair enough. Aren't we all skeptical of those who tell us they have been talking to God and said conversation involves us? Look what happened next: The Lord said to him, "What is that in your hand?" He said, "A staff." And he said "Throw it on the ground." So he threw it on the ground, and it became a serpent, and Moses ran from it. But the Lord said to Moses, "Put out your hand and catch it by the tail," so he put out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand, "that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you" (Exodus 4:2-5).
   ...There is no relationship with God outside of faith (Hebrews 11:6). And there is no evidence of faith without obedience (Acts 5:32). Clearly, there comes a point in time when everyone who calls out to God must do what initially seems absurd, ludicrous, and even dangerous. The calling of God is not a summons to mediocrity or cultural acceptance. It is not a call to get in line. It is a call to step out of line.
   ...What many of us fail to realize is that this is precisely the moment that validated the ministry of Moses forever. Forget about plagues, the Red Sea parting, manna from heaven, water from a rock, the Ten Commandments, and the Promised Land, if Moses fails to reach for the snake's tail. We already know he ran when he saw it. Now the command to go back and catch it by the tail.  ...When it comes to the Great Commission we either "Go, and make disciples," or go to church and contribute money to make sure someone else does it. 
   ...The measure of Moses' greatness was not that he successfully liberated the Hebrews from Pharaoh's vice-like grip. It wasn't the parting of the Red Sea, bringing forth water from a rock, or even the delivery of the 10 Commandments (still heralded to this day!). No, the greatness of Moses was determined when after fleeing in fear from a snake, he returned to pick it up by the tail because God told him to do it. 

Neutrality Is Killing America and Pacifying the Woke Church - By Bert Farias - ...What if I were to tell you that the recent polarization and division the last two elections and the recent pandemic brought in America, especially in the Western church, were of God? ...but we must also understand that division is necessary before true unity can come.

   ...First of all, Jesus Himself brought division, which he described as a sword, when He arrived on the earth: "Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword" (Matt. 10:34, MEV).

   ..."But, of course, there must be divisions among you so that you who have God's approval will be recognized!" (1 Cor. 11:19, NLT).

...You see, in one sense, a sword that brings division is really God's way of measuring true success, and a way of recognizing those who have God's approval. For the last two or so decades, the American church has been in a soft ,superficial place of silence and neutrality because we don't want to offend people. But Jesus, who came with a sword, is called the "rock of offense" (Rom. 9:33, 1 Pet. 2:8).What will you do with that?

   ...The neutral church says to use wisdom and not offend others. Meanwhile, much of the American church, infected by a grossly immoral and worldly antichrist culture that continues defacing the image of God and changing the gender of our children or killing them in the womb, continues to yawn in a sleepy state at God's will and intentions. God, have mercy on us!

   ...Satan loves to package evil in a beautiful cosmetic way so society and the church can swallow it. For example, abortion is called "family planning'; gay marriage is called "love" and symbolized by a colorful rainbow. ... Did you know that three transgenders, really witches, run BLM? And much of the church swallowed the movement hook, line and sinker.

   ...Satan knows if he can weaken the Western church through complacency and compromise, he can dethrone America's place on the world stage and affect the entire world. We are ruining the future of America's and the nations' children with our neutrality, our silence and our apathy. Yet there is an underground church in America that is rising.

 

The Real Reason Jesus Sent the Holy Spirit - By - Samuel Rodriguez - Acts 2:14 says, "Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd:"  This passage represents a lot more than the normative description regarding the occurrences of that blessed day. ...It was the same Peter that hid from the crowd in denial of Jesus.    ... Saints, listen carefully. Today's complacency is tomorrow's captivity. There is no such thing as comfortable Christianity. Let me be clear today.  The Spirit did not come so we could stay seated. The Spirit did not come so we can be complacent.  The Spirit did not come down so we can sing "Kumbaya." The Holy Spirit came down so we can get up.  He came down so we can go from ... Natural existence to supernatural living; from "I am OK" to "I am more than a conqueror"; from surviving to thriving; from making excuses to making history ...       ...We are here filled not with emotion, constructs or religious paradigms, but with the Holy Spirit of God. Guess what the church guess will do next? Stand up! Why? It's because we are not just any people. We are not Google, we are not Apple, we are not Ford, we are not even Starbucks.  We are the church of Jesus Christ. We are the bride. We are a Spirit-empowered ekklesia. And the gates of hell shall not, cannot, will not and may not prevail against us!  ...There is no such thing as silent Christianity. There is no such thing as Christianity on mute. There is no such thing as a silent Pentecostal. A silent Pentecostal is an oxymoron on steroids.

 

Charles G. Finney: "Decay of Conscience" (December 4, 1873)  - Brethren, our preaching will bear its legitimate fruits. If immorality prevails in the land, the fault is ours in a great degree. If there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the public press lacks moral discrimination, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in religion, the pulpit is responsible for it. If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it. Let us not ignore this fact, my dear brethren; but let us lay it to heart, and be thoroughly awake to our responsibility in respect to the morals of this nation.




Representatives & Ambassadors of the King of Kings

Our "calling," is to be Representatives of the King, Ambassadors for Christ, aware of the cost, knowing that it entails Judging and Reproof, as well as  "avoiding foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.

2 Corinthians 6:14-18 - Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship has righteousness with  unrighteousness? and what communion has light with darkness? And what concord has Christ with Belial? or what part has he that believes with an infidel? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? for you are the temple of the living God; as God has said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be separate, says the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.

Matthew 5:43-48 - You heard that it was said, 'You will love your neighbor" (Leviticus 19:18) and you will hate your enemy. But I am saying to you, you must love your enemies and you must pray for those who persecute you, so that you would become children of your Father, the One in the heavens, because He makes His sun rise on evil and good and rains on the righteous and unrighteous. For if you would love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do this? And if you would respect only your brothers, what are you doing that is remarkable? Do not even the heathens do this? Therefore you must be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Matthew 10:14-42 - And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city. Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles. But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.

    For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaks in you. And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endures to the end shall be saved. But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come. The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household? Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known.

    What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops. And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows. Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

    Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. He that loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that takes not his cross, and follows after me, is not worthy of me. He that finds his life shall lose it: and he that loses his life for my sake shall find it.

    He that receives you receives me, and he that receives me receives him that sent me. He that receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward; and he that receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward. And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward. 

A man that is an heretick after the first and second admonition reject; Knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sins, being condemned of himself."  --Titus 3:9-11  Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be you therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.  --Matthew 10:16

Ephesians 6:12 - For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Battle Stations! - By Ron Helle - ...Paul told the Corinthian believers to be alert to the actions of the enemy, “so that we would not be outwitted by Satan; for we are not ignorant of his designs” (2 Corinthians 2:11, ESV). The word translated “designs” is the Greek word noema, which means “that which is thought out, a purpose” (Vine’s Dictionary). Sadly, the Church in America is ignorant of Satan’s modus operandi (methods), which has resulted in the declining influence of Christianity in America.

   ...Militarily, we have been engaged in guerrilla warfare in every subsequent engagement (think Iraq and Afghanistan) since Vietnam. The battle is for the hearts and minds of the populace, not the taking of terrain. The way you treat people will determine how they will respond. The tactics of the enemy are fear, intimidation, and brutality. Satan is waging guerrilla warfare against the Church, and Christians have not responded well. In a guerrilla war, there are two opposing sides with the population caught in the middle; they, for the most part, want both sides to leave them alone. How they are treated will determine which side they will support. If the good guys mistreat them, they will either be apathetic toward them or actively be used by the enemy against them. The Church in America has been treating lost people as the enemy, resulting in a massive army that Satan is now using against us. If you doubt that, you need to start paying attention.

   ...So, what is a guy (or gal) supposed to do? It’s time to suit up! We need to heed Paul’s admonition and not be ignorant of how the enemy operates. To do this, we need to appropriate the weapons that God has given us.

   “Therefore, take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints.” —Ephesians 6:13-18

   “Battle stations, battle stations! All hands man your battle stations! This is NOT a drill. I say again, this is NOT a drill!”

2 Timothy 1:7-9 - For God did not give us a spirit of timidity but of power and love and self-control. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor me His prisoner, but you must now suffer hardships together with me to further the gospel according to the power of God, the One Who rescues us and calls us to a holy calling, not according to our works but according to His own purpose and grace, because that grace was given to us by Messiah Y'shua before eternal time.

2 Timothy 3:13-17 - But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

2 Timothy 4:1-4 - I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

Matthew 5:11 - Blessed are you when they would revile you and they would persecute you and they would say all manner of evil against you falsely because of Me.  You must continually rejoice and be extremely joyful, because your reward is great in the heavens: for in this way they persecuted the prophets, the ones who were before you. (2 Chronicles 36:16)

2 Timothy 3:12-14 - And all those who want to live in a Godly manner in Messiah Y'shua will be persecuted. But evil people and swindlers will go from bad to worse, deceiving more and being deceived. But you must continuously remain in what you learned and became convinced of, because you know from whom you learned...

John 15:18-25 - If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own: but because you are not of the world, but I chose you from the world, the world hates you because of this. You must continually remember the message, which I spoke to you, "A servant is not greater than his master." If they persecuted Me, then they will persecute you: if they kept My word, then they will keep yours. But they will do all these things to you because of My name, because they have not known the One Who sent Me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sinned: but now they do not have an excuse concerning their sin. The one who hates Me also hates My Father. If I did not do works among them which no one else had done, they would not have sinned: but now they also have seen and they have also hated both Me and My Father. But so that the statement would be fulfilled which has been written in their Torah (Teaching) that "They hated Me without reason." (Ps. 35:19; 69:5)

Acts 5:39-42 - ...and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ

Roman Empire Persecutions "Early Christians ... carried into the Coliseum to make a spectacle for those more savage than the beasts - ...Eleven of the twelve apostles were martyred, with the 12th, John, being reportedly thrown into a boiling pot of oil, but miraculously survived. --William Jennings Bryan - American Minute with Bill Federer

o Peter preached in Rome and was crucified upside down c.66 AD;

o Andrew preached in Asia Minor, modern-day Greece and Turkey, before being crucified on a sideways "Saint Andrew's Cross" around 60 AD;

o Thomas preached east of Syria, Parthia, and possibly India, and was pierced through with spears by four soldiers in 72 AD;

o Philip reportedly preached in Egypt, Carthage in North Africa, and Asia Minor. After converting the wife of a Roman proconsul in Phrygia, he was arrested and cruelly put to death in the city of Heliopolis around 80 AD;

o Matthew preached in Parthia, Persia and Ethiopia, where he was reportedly stabbed to death in the back in city of Nadabahl in 74 AD;

o Bartholomew, according to tradition, preached in India, Armenia, Ethiopia and Southern Arabia, before being skinned and martyred in the 1st century AD;

o James, thbre son of Zebedee, also know as "James, the greater," was arrested by Herod Agrippa, and beheaded by the Romans in 44 AD;

o James, the son of Alpheus, also known as "James, the younger," is said to have ministered in Syria, where he was stoned and clubbed to death in 62 AD;

o Thaddaeus, or Jude, preached in Asia Minor and Greece, till he was crucified in Beirut or Edessa around 65 AD;

o Simon the Zealot reportedly preached in Persia, Mauritania, on Africa's west, and possibly England, before being crucified in 74 AD;

o Matthias preached in Syria, where he was burned to death.

 


Do not become weary in well-doing

 

2 Thessalonians 3:13 - But you, brothers, do not become weary doing what is right.

 

Hebrews 12:1-3 - We also, therefore, since we have so great a host of witnesses surrounding us, after we have put off every weight and the easily distracting sin, would ourselves, patiently steadfast, run the race that is set before us fixing our eyes on the Author and Finisher of the Faith, Y'shua, Who, to obtain the joy set before Him, endured the cross, having despised the shame of it He sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For you must now consider the One Who endured such hostility as this toward Himself by the sinners, so that you would not be weary, losing heart in your inmost beings.

 

When You Just Want to Quit - By Dr. Ray Rooney, Jr. - Everything in life seems difficult. It's hard to make a living. It's hard to keep a marriage together. It's hard to raise children (the right way). It's hard to get along with people. It's hard to watch our country being driven into third-world status (the war against free speech is what you usually see in banana republics). It's hard to stomach the moral cesspool our culture has become (as when violence and mayhem committed by one group of people are called "peaceful protests' while the same thing committed by another group of people is called a "riot" and "insurrection."

      It's hard. It's hard because there never seems to be any end in sight. Our government isn't going to suddenly find Jesus, repent of its sins, and restore the biblical definition of marriage, end legalized abortion, wage war against pornography, end the debt cycle, protect our borders, end entitlements, or ever return to bipartisanship. And many church leaders aren't going to restore the holiness of God to the same level as His love allowing their pastors to start preaching about the issues that are tearing this world and our nation apart or actually start telling people that Jesus is the only way to receive eternal life.

      And keep this in mind: none of the apostles died peacefully in their beds with their families gathered around. Life is hard. Those who tell you otherwise are either lying, misinformed, or sheltered. What really makes it hard, though, are not the difficulties or trials themselves. It's the wistful notion that they shouldn't be happening to us at all. If I think I am entitled to prosperity, health, and success in everything I put my hand to, I am deceived.

      In the world you will have tribulation, (John 16:33) Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace but a sword (Matthew 10:34). Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you (1 Peter 4:12).

     Everything about the way the world is and the way things are going in America makes me want to throw up my hands in disgust, withdraw, and wait like Jonah for the fireworks show to begin. I'm tired of there being one set of laws for the majority of Americans and another set of laws for politicians. I'm tired of seeing political and religious leaders thumb their noses at God and seemingly get away with it. I'm tired of seeing the nation the Founders envisioned be turned into a lawless moral cesspool barreling towards socialism. I'm tired of the hypocrisy that is no longer implicit in the shadows but on full and prominent display in every venue of life.

      But guess what? I won't quit. I won't pack my bags and walk off into the dusk leaving faith and hope behind. Every day is a new day and with it comes hope. I will slog on through the muck and mire of apparent worldly indifference or defeat "looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God" (Hebrews 11:10).

      ...My job in life is not to defeat Goliath. ...Our job is not to return America to her former glory. Our job until we meet our Creator face to face is this: Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed...(2 Timothy 2:15) ...and having done all, to stand firm (Ephesians 6:13).

 

Matthew 16:24-28 - Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works. Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.

 

Luke 18:28-30 - Then Peter said, Lo, we have left all, and followed thee. And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or parents, or brethren, or wife, or children, for the kingdom of God's sake, Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting.