Archive for the ‘Courage’ Category

Get Out of the Me BOX

May 14, 2016


It is a well known fact, not only within the Scriptures but in human psychology, that we as humans have predominantly one person who usually is the center of our universe– ourselves. Many may scoff at this but it may not be consciously that we believe this, but certainly unconsciously.

With this human trait grounded deep within us, those of us who attempt to change our nature, our core, can only succeed by the transformation of the Holy Spirit, Christ within us.I came across a Spirit of Prophecy quote so deep and profound, it is the basis of this week’s post. Let us read.

 “Now sin has marred God’s perfect work, yet that handwriting remains. Even now all created things declare the glory of His excellence. There is nothing, save the selfish heart of man, that lives unto itself. No bird that cleaves the air, no animal that moves upon the ground, but ministers to some other life. There is no leaf of the forest, or lowly blade of grass, but has its ministry. Every tree and shrub and leaf pours forth that element of life without which neither man nor animal could live; and man and animal, in turn, minister to the life of tree and shrub and leaf.

The flowers breathe fragrance and unfold their beauty in blessing to the world. The sun sheds its light to gladden a thousand worlds. The ocean, itself the source of all our springs and fountains, receives the streams from every land, but takes to give. The mists ascending from its bosom fall in showers to water the earth, that it may bring forth and bud.

The angels of glory find their joy in giving,–giving love and tireless watchcare to souls that are fallen and unholy. Heavenly beings woo the hearts of men; they bring to this dark world light from the courts above; by gentle and patient ministry they move upon the human spirit, to bring the lost into a fellowship with Christ which is even closer than they themselves can know.”(Desire of Ages, p.20-21)

What we see is that all things were created for benefit of another. Only man “lives unto itself.” With this thought in mind let us look at how this selfish nature is at work among us and how we can get going and get out of the –me box.

One of the great and sorrowful lessons of our past history is the story of the blind man’s parents.

“The Jewish leaders still refused to believe the man had been blind and could now see, so they called in his parents. They asked them, “Is this your son? Was he born blind? If so, how can he now see?”His parents answered, “We know that this is our son and that he was born blind. But how he now sees we do not know, nor do we know who opened his eyes. Ask him; he is of age. He will speak for himself.” His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders, who had announced that anyone saying Jesus was the Messiah would be expelled from the synagogue. That’s why they said, “He is old enough. Ask him.” (John 9:18-23)

Truly a sad sad situation! Here were supposedly excited and grateful parents who witnessed their blinded by birth son’s eyesight return, yet they selfishly denied Christ! Their only concern was to not be expelled from their church even though a life changing miracle was given their son by a man called Jesus. In other words they refused to leave their me box and stand out alone what ever may fall- for the Truth.

And that is key to getting out of our boxes, to not be afraid of the circumstances that comes with standing up for Jesus and His word as delivered by His prophets. Have you ever asked yourself– Why is it that we as the “Israel of today” (Testimonies vol. 9, p.164) are prophesied to have “only” 144,000 sealed amongst us? Yes, it is because so many of us refuse to get out of the me box! The Lord’s last message of Elijah is derided, mocked, scorned and dismissed and who among us wants to be associated with that?  Only those willing to get outside of the safety of their box and face the consequences.

Let’s look at another example, that of our King.

“As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me...On hearing this, many of His disciples said, “This is a difficult teaching. Who can accept it?”..As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore.”(John 6:59,61, 66)

The Lord had just given the people strong and deep meat (truth) and in doing this it struck the people as strange words. In order to do this Jesus, our example , stepped out of His comfort zone and gave them the words of life. In  other words all our Lord had on His mind was His people not Himself, however strange it might make Him appear.

Do we today have this same “I want to help my brothers and sisters no  matter if I must be put in uncomfortable situations” attitude? To proclaim the truth from the Lord, His final message of solemn warnings and instructions, we must be willing to “go it alone” if this is what it takes. Of course all those who side with the Lord, will never be alone despite what we see and feel from this world.

The Spirit of Prophecy shows us that those who step outside the box will be like Elijah, willing to speak the words of Truth come what may.

“The messages from heaven are of a character to arouse opposition. The faithful witnesses for Christ and the truth will reprove sin. Their words will be like a hammer to break the flinty heart, like a fire to consume the dross. There is constant need of earnest, decided messages of warning. God will have men who are true to duty. At the right time He sends His faithful messengers to do a work similar to that of Elijah.” (Testimonies, vol.5, p.254) 

Being in this message I am frequently hearing from brethren, especially from the poorer countries, who tell of their experience within their own church. Their willingness to stand for the Lord’s final message and it’s often solemn declarations, has cost them their membership or rank within the church. Despite the opposition they have learned that it is not self they are worried about rather it is their brothers and sisters!

In closing, let us read what the message tells of our responsibilities. We can only do these faithful instructions if we step outside our–me box. May God help us to do that.


   The Responsibility of Those Who Bear the Message.

Since Ezekiel represents those whose hearts the message has reached, then to them the Lord is speaking when He says: “Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at My mouth, and give them warning from Me.  When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest 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 thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.

   “Again, When a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumbling block before him, he shall die: because  thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand.  Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also thou hast delivered thy soul.” Ezek. 3 :17-21.

   Because of the unfaithfulness of the former watchmen, the Lord makes the antitypical Ezekiel — he and she who “sigh and cry for the abominations  that be done in the midst thereof” (the church) — a “watchman” (Ezek. 3:17) in their stead.  Be careful, therefore, Brother, Sister, lest you also betray your trust and find yourself thrust out.  “Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.” 1 Cor. 10:12.  Only those who thus humble themselves now, will the Lord exalt in due time to be

His Faithful Watchmen to Stand Before the Unfaithful (Tract 1, p.41-42)

Believe me brethren the above snare is much more common than we think. Far too many of us mount the judgment seat and declare this shortcoming and that shortcoming from the few large organizations that our doing their best to provide present Truth “meat” to all those hungry for it. But as we point out in this post we don’t have to solely relay on the formal organizations  to send out the Truth  today.

“No need to depend on the sanction of any minister or any people to do God’s work, God will vindicate you.”(1888 Materials , p.1746)

We’ve heard the famous quote, “He marches to his own beat.” Well, that’s another way of saying we don’t have to be told what to do, we pick up the shovel, hammer, wheelbarrow (figuratively speaking) and get to work! All that is required for us to be active in spreading the sealing message today is to be–self sacrificing.




Voice Like A Trumpet

October 24, 2015


“Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” (Isaiah 58:1)

The above word of God is too plain for us to misunderstand. This crying aloud has been a Biblical trait from the people of God since ancient times. The prophet Amos knew all too well that this crying out the straight forward warning is not readily accepted by many, and often by those today who proclaim themselves as Christians, even some advanced Elijah messengers. But why is this faithful act so often misunderstood? Let’s take an in depth look at it.

“They hate him that rebuketh in the gate, and they abhor him that speaketh uprightly.” (Amos 5:10)

We as Seventh-day Adventists  hardly ever see or hear of someone warning others in a straight forward way, just as they did back in Amos’ day.

A little history of what “rebuking in the gate” was,  from Biblehub. com–

“The gate” is the well-known place of concourse, where just or, in Israel now, unjust judgment was given, where all was done which was to be done publicly . Samaria had a large area by its chief gate, where two kings could hold court, and the 400 false prophets and the people, in great numbers, could gather and a market could be held . Josiah broke down an idol-shrine, which was in one of the gates of Jerusalem. The prophets seized the opportunity of finding the people together, and preached to them there.

So it was even in the days of Solomon. “Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets; she crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates, in the city she uttereth her words, How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity?…” and again, “She standeth in the top of high places, by the way, in the meeting of the paths. She crieth at the gates, at the entry of the city, at the coming in at the doors; Unto you, O men, I call, “Pro 8:2-4.

Jeremiah mentions two occasions, upon which God bade him reprove the king and people in the gates of Jerusalem . There doubtless Amos and Hosea reproved them, and, for reproving, were “hated.” As Isaiah says, “they lay a snare for him that reproveth in the gate”. They sinned publicly, and therefore they were to be rebuked publicly. They sinned “in the gate” by injustice and oppression, and therefore were to be “rebuked before all, that others also might fear”. 

We can gleam much from the above short synopsis. We see that the prophets found gatherings as an opportune place to rebuke “open sin” and to place warning in front of all, that the honest and God-fearing among them may be set straight, hopefully repenting. Their conscience needed to be aroused.

A while back a fellow present truth believer said to me ” our people are in a coma”. I could not have said it better. So I thought, “how can they be awakened?” One of the ways is the straight testimony from the pulpit. But how often do we see that? Not frequent.

Let me tell you of another way, a way that hearkens back to the “old days”, a way that clearly shows the rebukers lifting their voice “like a trumpet” at the “gate”, a place where the people of God gather.

Her name is sister Patricia. Her and her two children have a ministry where they travel to different SDA churches around the country and world. They bring with them Tracts, CD’s and DVD’s. They also carry signs of warning. For instance , during Christmas, they may have signs warning against the pagan practice of Christmas.

Recently they traveled to Michigan to Doug Batchelor’s seminar at a church in Lansing. I had been in contact with her prior to the event and she let me know she would look into it and possibly make the trip (she’s from Michigan). So they soon went to the event.

The first night they were able to get inside and see Doug speak. But as present truth believers , their love for souls just could not sit back and “enjoy” a seminar of basically peace and safety. As we are surely aware, the Lord through His prophecies show that the Lord “will suddenly come to His temple.”(Mal. 3:1). There is warning message now to be given.

“Our message must be as direct as was that of John. He rebuked kings for their iniquity. Notwithstanding the peril his life was in, he never allowed truth to languish on his lips. Our work in this age must be as faithfully done..” (Bible Commentary, vol. 4, p.1184) 

“Our message is not to be one of peace and safety. As a people who believe in Christ’s soon appearing, we have a definite message to bear,—“Prepare to meet thy God.” (BC, vol. 4, p.1184)

With the next event, the solemn church judgment about to take place, we have no time to be whistling Dixie while the iceberg is straight ahead! So they decided to do what they call a “siege”. This is their act of love, their way of arousing the conscience of the “sinners in Zion.”

They follow Inspired counsel–

“Christ’s ambassadors have nothing to do with consequences. They must perform their duty and leave the results to God.” (GC, p.609-610)

During their last siege, their signs included “S.D.A Does Abortions Just Like Planned Parenthood” and  “We Love You”. They recorded it and later placed it on their YouTube channel for wider distribution.

The Spirit of Prophecy confirms their approach–

“The true people of God, who have the spirit of the work of the Lord and the salvation of souls at heart, will ever view sin in its real, sinful character. They will always be on the side of faithful and plain dealing with sins which easily beset the people of God. Especially in the closing work for the church, in the sealing time of the one hundred and forty-four thousand who are to stand without fault before the throne of God, will they feel most deeply the wrongs of God’s professed people.”(Testimonies, vol. 3, p.266)

“In the case of Achan’s sin God said to Joshua: “Neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you.” How does this instance compare with the course pursued by those who will not raise their voice against sin and wrong, but whose sympathies are ever found with those who trouble the camp of Israel with their sins? Said God to Joshua: “Thou canst not stand before thine enemies, until ye take away the accursed thing from among you.” He pronounced the punishment which would follow the transgression of His covenant.” (Testimonies, vol. 3, p.267-268)

“Some will not receive the testimony that God has given us to bear, flattering themselves that we may be deceived and that they may be right. They think that the people of God are not in need of plain dealing and of reproof, but that God is with them. These tempted ones, whose souls have ever been at war with the faithful reproving of sin, would cry: Speak unto us smooth things. What disposition will these make of the message of the True Witness to the Laodiceans? There can be no deception here. This message must be borne to a lukewarm church by God’s servants. It must arouse His people from their security and dangerous deception in regard to their real standing before God.” (Testimonies, vol. 3, p.259)

“Satan trembles when the voice of God speaks through his instruments, giving cautions and warnings, and rebuking sin.” (RH, June 20, 1882)

The Lord’s last message of Elijah says this about our issue-

“Speaking of those who indulge in criticizing those who reprove at the gate, we read: “They will question and criticize everything that arises in the unfolding of truth, criticize the work and position of others, criticize every branch of the work in which they have not themselves a part. They will feed upon the errors and mistakes and faults of others, ‘until,’ said the angel, ‘the Lord Jesus shall rise up from His mediatorial work in the heavenly sanctuary, and shall clothe Himself with the garments of vengeance, and surprise them at their unholy feast; and they will find themselves unprepared for the marriage supper of the Lamb.’ Their taste has been so perverted that they would be inclined to criticize even the table of the Lord in His kingdom.” — “Testimonies for the Church.” Vol. 5, p. 690. (Sym. Code, vol. 1, no.15, p.4-5)

The Scriptures point to the people of God each having a specific duty to perform.

“For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body–whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free–and we were all made to drink of one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot says, “Because I am not a hand, I am not a part of the body,” it is not for this reason any the less a part of the body. 

And if the ear says, “Because I am not an eye, I am not a part of the body,” it is not for this reason any the less a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired.

If they were all one member, where would the body be? But now there are many members, but one body. Now the eye is not able to say to the hand, “I have no need of you.” Or again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” But much rather, those members of the body seeming to be weaker are necessary, and the parts we consider less honorable, we treat with greater honor.

And our un-presentable parts are treated with special modesty, whereas our presentable parts have no such need. But God has composed the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, that there should be no division in the body, but the members should have the same concern for one another.

And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honored, all the members rejoice with it. Now you are Christ’s body, and individually members of it.” (1 Cor. 12:13- 27)

So we see that all of us , who proclaim to know Jesus and desire to work for Him and His kingdom, must respect what God has called another to do. We all cannot be the “hand”. Likewise we all cannot do the type of work sister Patricia and her family are called to do. But we do not call it wrong or misplaced work, because it is God’s work from long ago. His true “rebuking at the gate” work!

Some may ask–What motivates people to do this straight forward work? Again Inspired counsel tells us-

“While others try to throw a cloak over the existing evil, and excuse the great wickedness everywhere prevalent, those who have a zeal for God’s honor and a love for souls will not hold their peace to obtain favor of any. Their righteous souls are vexed day by day with the unholy works and conversation of the unrighteous. They are powerless to stop the rushing torrent of iniquity, and hence they are filled with grief and alarm.

They mourn before God to see religion despised in the very homes of those who have had great light. They lament and afflict their souls because pride, avarice, selfishness, and deception of almost every kind are in the church. The Spirit of God, which prompts to reproof, is trampled underfoot, while the servants of Satan triumph. God is dishonored, the truth made of none effect.”(Testimonies, vol. 5, p.210-211)

In closing, the Scriptures tell us that we all have our work to do. Some work successfully from within some from without. Some, as sister Patricia and her ministry attests, are called to do the reproving at the gate. Let us pray for and support people like them that do a work that requires courage and fortitude to –

“Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” (Isaiah 58:1)

For their website-click here

Little Light Big Courage

September 5, 2015

Kim davis

We have posted many times about courage. How God time and again shows He values courage from His people. David was courageous and called a man after the Lord’s heart. Job was courageous and stood firm despite the horrible curses that God allowed to come upon him. Elijah was courageous as he took on the 450 prophets of Baal, only with God and himself.

This week the world witnessed a remarkable display of courage. One woman, has stood up against the “law” of the land for God’s law! She has claimed her actions are on “God’s authority”. Now can we who claim to love the Lord really take in what she has done?

To really comprehend what she has done we need to look at this from our view, we who are called “Seventh-day Adventists”. How should we relate to this act of courage? To begin with we should know the word of God says the following–

“He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. But to the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and sexually immoral and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their place will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur. This is the second death.”(Rev. 21:7-8)

The words of Christ are clear–Be a coward, and you’ll be the first not to inherit the kingdom. The cowardly are listed first and foremost in God’s word above. There is a purpose of each and every jot and tittle of God’s word.

The world is fast closing its probation, the final closing events are around the corner, and Satan has been given more free rein to start to set up his abominable ways into our society. Gay relations are clearly against the word of God. Sodom and Gomorrah is the primary example of the Lord’s view upon a perverted lifestyle.

“Or do you not know that the unrighteous ones will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor verbal abusers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Cor. 6:10)

Her name is Kim Davis. She has been employed as the Rowan county clerk in Kentucky. As part of her duties she has to sign off on marriage certificates. Being a Christian she has steadfastly refused to sign off on couples who are gay and requesting a marriage license. This has caused an uproar not only in Rowan county but now across the nation. A real God-given test for all to see!

Now she has been booked in jail for refusing a court order to issue gay marriage licenses. But what i find truly remarkable is her prominent display of the Christian character in all this. After being told she must go to jail, she simply responded to the judge, “thank you”.

“Bless those cursing you, pray for those mistreating you.” (Luke 6:28)

What can we as SDA learn from this woman? First , we as SDA know that we have been granted “great light” on Bible prophecies and truth. We know much more Truth that the Babylon churches, yet what church does this woman belong to? A Babylon church! Despite her having little light as to God’s end time truths and even present truth–she is walking in the light she knows! She’s a doer of God’s word.

“Be doers of the word, and not hearers only. Otherwise, you are deceiving yourselves.” (James 1:22)

We as SDA often fall woefully short walking in our light. We claim to be messengers of God , telling the people the truth of the sanctuary, Sabbath observance, end time prophetic events, etc. Yet how many of us step forward with courage?

Here we see a woman not afraid to stand up for God and His word! Wow! Small light yet great BIG courage. We did a post called “If we talk the talk, we must walk the walk” a few years back. Kim Davis issued this statement.

“I’m very steadfast in what I believe. I don’t leave my conscience and my Christian soul out in my vehicle and come in here and pretend to be something I’m not. It’s easy to talk the talk, but can you walk the walk?”

In our history there stands out three specific examples of courageous stands for God.

David– While king Saul and his army were exceedingly afraid of the Giant 9 foot Goliath and his men, young David stepped out in total faith that God would back him up–He did.

Elijah– Elijah was not bowed down by being scorned and derided by the people. The whole land had laughed and scoffed that he was a man of God. His attire , simple and poor, led them to believe God was not with this poor deluded man. We all know the great courage Elijah showed in the showdown in front of the overwhelming majority. They forgot that God IS the majority.

Martin Luther– Even though not having the greatest light in his time, he nevertheless boldly took on the Roman empire single-handedly , and of course with God’s purpose and strength. He walked in the light he knew and stood up to the world’s hierarchy and empire when no one else dared.

These three men proved that God was with them. Their purpose and goal was achieved because God was with them and backed their courage to stand up for Truth and right doing.

Are we as SDA standing up for God today? Do we correct a brother or sister during Sabbath lunch time when they want to talk about the latest game or business transaction? Do we gently warn a sister when she continues week after week to walk into God’s presence in the Sanctuary in a dress that resembles a night club dress? If we can’t muster up the courage here,  do we at least tell the elder or pastor about such dis-honor in God’s house? Do we correct someone who says God’s name in vain in front of us?

Let us be just like Kim Davis, and be not afraid to do the right thing.

“It is the essence of all right faith, to do the right thing at the right time.” (Testimonies, vol. 6, p.24)

“Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.” (Deut. 31:6)

“But Peter and the apostles replied, “We must obey God rather than any human authority.” (Acts 5:29)

In closing, will you join me in prayer in behalf of this courageous woman?

“Attend unto my cry; for I am brought very low: deliver me from my persecutors; for they are stronger than I. Bring my soul out of prison, that I may praise thy name: the righteous shall compass me about; for thou shalt deal bountifully with me.” (Psalms 142:6-7)


Shorts in the Sanctuary

August 22, 2015

Short skirtman in shorts

When we as part of the God’s remnant people see the above dress in His sanctuary, what should we think? What comes to mind is dis-honor and dis-respect. Our God is so much more worthy than worldly fashions. Let us look at what Inspiration says about this important part of worship.

Being a part of “God’s house”,  it truly is quite sad to notice week after week many of our young ladies (even middle age) wearing simply unacceptable dress in His presence. His word is abundantly clear on this issue , there should be no mis-understanding about it. Although it is our women who most often have the short attire problem, men as well can partake in this abomination.

Concerning my local church, I had posted a few months ago how I was led by the Lord to bring this issue up to the prior pastor (we have since had a new one who is trying to make some headway). This improper dressing was clearly pointed out to him , yet several months have gone by and this still remains a weakness within our church. The sin has been “passed over”. Our church is by no means the exception. This sin is throughout the SDA churches and is one of the most plain and obvious non-reforms we as His remnant people are guilty of.

Inspiration states–

“Sin and sinners in the church must be promptly dealt with, that others may not be contaminated. Truth and purity require that we make more thorough work to cleanse the camp from Achans. Let those in responsible positions not suffer sin in a brother. Show him that he must either put away his sins or be separated from the church.” (Testimonies, vol. 5, p.147)

Who is contaminated and effected by the improper dress? Certainly the peers of such casual and provocative dressers! Once an influential young gal (ie. a popular one) wears a short skirt, there is likely to be female followers who will admire the fashion and follow suite. It’s the ol “birds of a feather flock together” scenario.

We see from the divine instruction above that the “leaders” have a real duty to step up to the plate and give the right counsel. Doing the right thing here is tough, I will grant that but nevertheless it must be done.

His word says it’s tough to correct people–

“They hate the one who rebukes in the gate, and abhor the one who speaks uprightly.” (Amos 5:10)

But who is to be pleased, God, man or woman? Will man or woman grant us life to live forever more? Will man or woman give us eternal happiness? Think this through my brothers and sisters. In the Lord’s final sealing message, He warns us through the prophet that following the fashion of the world is a very serious abomination. It is listed as number 2 of 12 abominations in the church (partial list).

1.   Lack of reverence in the house of God: Isa. 56:7; Volume 5,  pages 492-500.

2.   Following the fashions of the world: Isa. 3:16; Volume 1, pages  269, 270; Volume 4, page 632; Volume 3, page 379; Volume 5, page 78; Volume 1, pages 189-191;  Volume 1, pages 135, 136; Volume 4, page 631. (SRod, vol.1, p.34)

So with the greatest concern and Christian love we should do our warning. But those leaders who wink or ignore such sins Inspiration says —

“He would teach His people that disobedience and sin are exceedingly offensive to Him and are not to be lightly regarded. He shows us that when His people are found in sin they should at once take decided measures to put that sin from them, that His frown may not rest upon them all. But if the sins of the people are passed over by those in responsible positions, His frown will be upon them, and the people of God, as a body, will be held responsible for those sins.

In His dealings with His people in the past the Lord shows the necessity of purifying the church from wrongs. One sinner may diffuse darkness that will exclude the light of God from the entire congregation. When the people realize that darkness is settling upon them, and they do not know the cause, they should seek God earnestly, in great humility and self-abasement, until the wrongs which grieve His Spirit are searched out and put away.

The prejudice which has arisen against us because we have reproved the wrongs that God has shown me existed, and the cry that has been raised of harshness and severity, are unjust. God bids us speak, and we will not be silent. If wrongs are apparent among His people, and if the servants of God pass on indifferent to them, they virtually sustain and justify the sinner, and are alike guilty and will just as surely receive the displeasure of God; for they will be made responsible for the sins of the guilty.

In vision I have been pointed to many instances where the displeasure of God has been incurred by a neglect on the part of His servants to deal with the wrongs and sins existing among them. Those who have excused these wrongs have been thought by the people to be very amiable and lovely in disposition, simply because they shunned to discharge a plain Scriptural duty. The task was not agreeable to their feelings; therefore they avoided it.” (Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 266-267)

These warnings are not solely the leader’s job. If God gives you or I the heads up on a certain disrespectful lady or gent, and the opportunity arises we should politely and with love, warn them to show reverence in God’s house.

Look how Inspiration says fashion is so serious with God–

“Do not, my sisters, trifle longer with your own souls and with God. I have been shown that the main cause of your backsliding is your love of dress. This leads to the neglect of grave responsibilities, and you find yourselves with scarcely a spark of the love of God in your hearts. Without delay, renounce the cause of your backsliding, because it is sin against your own soul and against God. Be not hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. Fashion is deteriorating the intellect and eating out the spirituality of our people.

Obedience to fashion is pervading our Seventh-day Adventist churches and is doing more than any other power to separate our people from God. I have been shown that our church rules are very deficient. All exhibitions of pride in dress, which is forbidden in the word of God, should be sufficient reason for church discipline.

If there is a continuance, in face of warnings and appeals and entreaties, to still follow the perverse will, it may be regarded as proof that the heart is in no way assimilated to Christ. Self, and only self, is the object of adoration, and one such professed Christian will lead many away from God.

There is a terrible sin upon us as a people, that we have permitted our church members to dress in a manner inconsistent with their faith. We must arise at once and close the door against the allurements of fashion. Unless we do this, our churches will become demoralized.” (Testimonies, vol. 4 ,p. 647-648)

There are many, many takeaways from these counsels above. One of the most striking is the counsel to give–church discipline. When was that last time this God breathed word was obeyed?

You see my beloved, this area of fashion Satan has thoroughly hood winked us. We say to ourselves and even to others who may bring this serious sin up, “It is the inside that counts, what we do on the outside is secondary.” But this is Satan’s trick!

Just re-read the Lord’s messenger’s words above again and you will see that fashion is NOT un-important to God- especially within His holy Sanctuary. When we convert we show it not only within but without!

Yes, we must first be made whole within by His love and law, but once the conversion comes we show it from within and without. If we don’t we can be fulfilling prophecy–

“Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.” (James 1:6-8)

We are living in the very last hours of our SDA probation, and we MUST get that seal in our forehead if we are to remain standing (Mal. 3:2) once the Lord “suddenly comes to His temple” (Mal. 3:1).

We MUST be over-comers. The Lord helps us but we must take that first step. He is not going to dress us up for Sabbath service, He expects us to willfully come before Him and show proper respect and honor. Remember He is watching within His sanctuary.

After we ourselves have overcome sins, such as the dreadful fashion sin, the Lord let’s us know that by warning others we have cleared ourselves of the wrong doing in our midst.

“When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest 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 thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.”(Ezek. 3:18-19)

In closing, let us as faithful guardians of His right ways, do our part to show by example we dress properly to please God. But let us remember that those who pat the sinners on the back, after they have been clearly shown their fashion sin, are aligning themselves up with their sin. In effect we are really saying “you’re dying and I am happy for you”.No! We want ALL to live!

“And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.” (Ezek. 9:4)

“Study the 9th chapter of Ezekiel. These words will be literally fulfilled; yet the time is passing, and the people are asleep. They refuse to humble their souls and to be converted. Not a great while longer will the Lord bear with the people who have such great and important truths revealed to them, but who refuse to bring these truths into their individual experience. The time is short. God is calling; will you hear? Will you receive His message? Will you be converted before it is too late? Soon, very soon, every case will be decided for eternity.” (Manuscript Releases, vol. 1, p.260)



Approval of Man

February 21, 2015

approval of man

Apostle Paul said, “For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ “(Gal. 1:10).

These Inspired words carried much weight back then and especially today. Sadly, there are untold masses of “believers” that say “I want approval of man, and if I get it then I will discuss Christ.” Sure, not openly, but in their heart and mind.  Oh how we cower at the thought of being “unpopular” or “rejected” of men and women!

Our Lord experienced this rejection first hand.

“He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.”

These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum. Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this , said, ‘This is an hard saying; who can hear it’? When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, ‘Doth this offend you? What then if you see the Son of Man ascending to where He was before? It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.

But there are some of you that believe not.’ For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him. And he said, ‘Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.’ From that time  many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. Then said Jesus unto the twelve, ‘Will ye also go away?’

Simon Peter answered, “Lord, who will we go to? You have the words of eternal life.” (John 6:56-68)

Here Jesus was talking of some very deep things spiritually, yet even after having done great miracles prior to this, many were showing their true colors by their surface belief. Can you imagine being the Son of God and just having raised a young boy to life, and then to have most of your followers desert you because they can’t understand some things you said? We can only imagine the great feeling of rejection and disappointment He experienced.

Today, we have this very wide-spread problem. Truth is largely disdained among His professed people, for the sake of “human approval” first and foremost. Recently a personal experience brought this home so clearly that it prompted me to write about it.

Our local church as most churches do, has some “Bereans”. A certain woman, we’ll call Sally (name changed) and I had been discussing present truth over lunch. I gave her a two-part CD audio set called “God’s end-time servants”. She later listened to them and was quite joyful to learn truths of which she did not know. Our church, as we have posted many times, largely discusses the “past truths” instead of present truth, so this was quite refreshing to her.

She later called me letting me know her appreciation for giving her the CD’s. Later she told another church member Debra (name changed) and lent them to her. Debra got back to her very excited. So much so that she soon set up a Bible study in which she wanted to have several people discuss this “new light” she had heard and believed was truth.

I get a call from Sally saying there was to be a Bible study over the CD set I gave her, and that there were friends from church that were excited to learn “new truth”. She gave me Debra’s number and I  gave her a call. I introduced myself as a member of the local church of which she goes as well. She spoke about the Bible study to follow the next day. We discussed the CD set and what it contained.

Debra kept saying things like “This is truth and we need to tell the church about it!” Of course I agreed and said the present truth on the CD’s are not being allowed in the church because it awakes the members to what’s really going on. The leaders want the people asleep with the “peace and safety” message. All of this she agreed to and brought up some of her own good points.

We finished with her asking where I got the CD set from. I mentioned that it had come from a close Davidian brother. There was silence. Then she recovered and said she’d see me tomorrow at the Bible study.

After this,  apparently she began to delve more into the teachings and the next day she called and said, “Hi this is Debra, we’ve decided to cancel the Bible study, because we found out this is Shepherd’s Rod teachings.”  I was confused, yet I knew all too well who was behind this–the spirit of darkness! The one who wants truth hidden and out of view! And those he knows listens to his voice!

I calmly asked her why she had agreed that the truth on the CD’s were so powerful and backed up by Scripture and SOP only, yet now she was saying they are not truth? She wallowed around talking senseless points about how the Rod believers have beliefs she does not agree with. Yet she offered no examples or proof to support her mistaken understanding of the Lord’s Rod.

I ended with the point that the “truth” is what matters and if it comes from a “monkey rod” or the Shepherd’s Rod , it should not matter. For Christ is–truth, and in whatever form we find It! It fell on deaf ears. After I hung up , it occurred to me I could have asked her what “Rod” is it that the Lord wants us to hear?

“The LORD’s voice cries to the city–Wisdom shall see Your name: Hear ye the Rod! And Who has appointed it!” (Micah 6:9)

So there is a perfect example of how someone who “heard” things and did not take upon herself to investigate it–succumbed to the peer pressure of rejecting the Lord’s Rod. Her fear was most likely that of being rejected by the church for professing belief.

“Those who allow prejudice to bar the mind against the reception of truth cannot receive the divine enlightenment. Yet, when a view of Scripture is presented, many do not ask, Is it true–in harmony with God’s word? but, By whom is it advocated? and unless it comes through the very channel that pleases them, they do not accept it. So thoroughly satisfied are they with their own ideas that they will not examine the Scripture evidence with a desire to learn, but refuse to be interested, merely because of their prejudices.}” (Testimonies to Ministers, p.105-106)

Then we have the most pitiful story of the blind man’s parents as told in John 9:1-38. After Jesus had restored the man’s sight we pick up the story in verse 18.

“The Jews therefore did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind, and had received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight, and asked them, “Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?” His parents answered them, “We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind; but how he now sees, we don’t know; or who opened his eyes, we don’t know. He is of age. Ask him. He will speak for himself.”

His parents said these things because they feared the Jews; for the Jews had already agreed that if any man would confess him as Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. Therefore his parents said, “He is of age. Ask him.”

Wow. Here this couple had given birth to a son who could not see, and decades later, along comes the Son of Man and makes him whole, restoring the priceless gift of sight. Then at their moment of test before God’s eyes, they fail!   The approval of man took precedent over the approval of God! Fear won over courage!

You see my brethren, our King places a premium on courage. In fact “cowards” are the very first one listed who do not make it to heaven!

“But the cowards, unbelievers, vile, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars–their share will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”(Rev. 21:8)

“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.” (James 1:5)

You lack courage? Just ask. So we come to a fork in the road many times in our life–take the brave road, regardless of circumstances or results, or take the safe easy road, complete with “man’s approval” and life’s easy chair.

There is a test that we are now being made to prove before God where we stand– it is the acceptance of our present truth– The Lord’s message of Elijah. Where do you stand? Do you cower and mumble under your breath that you believe, yet when the opportunity comes to step forward, you retreat back? God does not miss this. He is watching us and what we do with His truth today. Are we like Debra or the blind man’s parents? Willing to acknowledge truth only as long as we can hold our church membership?

SOP says –-“God means that testing truth shall be brought to the front and become a subject of examination and discussion, even if it is through the contempt placed upon it.” (Testimonies, vol. 5, p.453)

Yes we are counseled to be as “wise as serpents and harmless as doves”(Matt 10:16), but at no time are we called to deny His truth. God knows how to test each of us and that test will be bearable. We only have to step forward when called. Often, such as in my example, we can proclaim His truth and can still be a part of the church. Yet, we must use good judgment and wisdom and most importantly–love.

Here’s another example of trusting the approval of man instead of God. About three years ago, I became friends with “Dean” (name changed) from our church. We talked one morning before service in the foyer. I had mentioned that I had a great study on the 144,000. His ears perked up and he said, “Do you? I would love to see that.” So I promised him that I would bring the CD audio to church the following Sabbath.

The next Sabbath I handed it to him and he listened that week. The next Sabbath I met him before service again in the foyer. “Wow” he said. “That study is awesome! We need to make copies of this and spread to our church.” I readily agreed ( I had not been demoted as Deacon at this point). So the next week I came with several copies to give him. He again voiced a most positive attitude. He agreed that the Scriptures and SOP both teach that the 144,000 is a literal number. Keep in mind these CD’s were composed of Scripture and SOP, nothing else.

Fast forward a couple of months. One day after speaking as a pre-Sabbath school attendant to the church (which I was asked to do on several occasions), and after receiving several complimentary comments from  the members, a church elder told me that the temporary pastor (we were in transition in finding a new pastor) wanted to speak to me later that week in his office.

Well, as I have posted before, someone got upset at the straight testimony I gave and told the pastor I was teaching Shepherd’s Rod teachings. Later I did not deny I was a believer in the meeting and was asked to either deny the teachings or be demoted from deacon to regular member. Obviously I chose truth and accepted their decision.

Later Dean got wind , as did many in the church, of my affiliation with the Lord’s Elijah message. From then on he acted as if I had leprosy! Just a quick “hi” as he passed me by. I knew he had chosen the church over the Truth. So sad yet very common.

In our last example, we remember Joshua and Caleb. Out of the vast multitude, only two adults were able to step forward and say they believe in the Lord. All the rest cowered at standing up for these two unpopular servants! Sure, there may have been quite a few that mumbled under their breath that they admired Joshua’s and Caleb’s courage, but God wants action, not wishy-washy lukewarmness! (Rev. 3:16)

In closing, let us truly love Truth. Man’s approval does not and should not supersede God’s approval. My Dad used to be a championship race car driver, and I remember telling him “You know Dad, our life on this earth is a test run, practice laps, for the main event.” In other words, we must qualify here before we can make the main event–heaven. Yes indeed, we are to step forward and “love the truth” even if it means we become unpopular and/or avoided. Our Lord was our perfect example!

“Hear the word of the LORD, ye that tremble at his word; Your brethren that hated you, that cast you out for my name’s sake, said, Let the LORD be glorified: but he shall appear to your joy, and they shall be ashamed.” (Isaiah 66:5)

“Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the Lord.”(Jer.17:5)

The Lord’s Security

January 25, 2014

1391734_533790490029227_556472776_n  A while back we posted about the loss of my beloved dog,  “Shotsky” (listed under God’s signs). The Lord had gave me a most wonderful pet and I was privileged to have him for about 7 years. But after he was gone I started to become concerned. I thought, ” I have lost my security alarm”. He was my guard dog and as such,  once in a while while I would be sleeping , he would bark if he heard any noise.

So I began to think about another “security blanket” in the form of another dog. But as the weeks went by and while I was thinking about securing another dog, the Lord woke me up one day with His words–” You think I can’t protect you?” Wow! That struck me deeply!

After I heard this, a vision was given me of a police officer standing near my window looking at a burglar suspect say, “What are you doing?” Then the suspect looks up wide-eyed and runs for his life!  The Lord basically said He could send His angels at anytime in a flash of a moment to stop any trouble.

This was quite a rewarding revelation. I pondered this thought and it became greater and greater in understanding, of His great and unique ability to protect us.

In Scripture we are told to be kind to strangers because the Lord could be allowing His angels to visit us (Hebrews 13:2). So we can rest assured that any security needed, a police officer, a commando, an army, whatever, the Lord is able to place before us at a moments notice.

As the quote in the picture says, ” The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, and delivers them. Oh taste and see that the Lord is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!” (Psalms 34:7-8)

It really is based on faith and belief. At times I have felt the power of the Lord so clearly that I would almost be ready to face a bad situation and call upon the Lord to see the danger fall to the ground. This is powerful faith.

We know that prophets such as Noah and David, went forth and did their duties knowing the Lord had their back.

Noah endured decades of ridicule and taunting, yet he remained courageous because he knew the Lord was with Him and would secure him and his family.

David stepped up to Goliath because he too, knew that the Lord had his back. Oh what faith and strong belief can do to one’s walk!

It all comes down to faith and trust. Do we really believe that the Lord can do this or that? Have we considered the Lord first in our life’s problems and concerns?

Once we really believe that He can protect us, we walk around with a new confidence in Him, and new love for Him.

Our Lord said, “Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.” (Matt.10:31)  and ” for he who touches you touches the apple of His eye.”(Zech. 2:8)

We have the great Eyes watching us. He doesn’t miss one small thing. Therefore, we should not worry and do as the Lord said, “…Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”(Mark 5:36)

We know that we cannot please God without faith. “And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him” (Hebrews 11:6).

In the near future the saints of God will have total security from the Lord.

“At our happy, holy state the wicked were enraged, and would rush violently up to lay hands on us to thrust us into prison, when we would stretch forth the hand in the name of the Lord, and they would fall helpless to the ground.” (Early Writings, p.15)

… “Run, say to that young man, ‘Jerusalem shall be inhabited as villages without walls, because of the multitude of people and livestock in it.Then I, Myself, will be a protective wall of fire around Jerusalem, says the LORD. And I will be the glory inside the city!” (Zechariah 2:4-5)

Can we imagine the extent of  protection from the Lord? The upcoming prophecies are to be fulfilled and His security and protection will be there. We can imagine going to bed at night and not even thinking of locking the doors! To walk in the moonlight streets late at night without a worry.

All this is yours and mine, all we must do is make Him King and Ruler of our life. Abide by His word as said by His prophets.  Agree to pass on sins of this world and commit and convert.

“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9)

May you exercise your faith, trusting in the One who can give you the only security worth having–  The Lord’s Security.

“What other Criticism do you Have?”

December 21, 2013

church dress

As I heard the above words coming from the “leader” of the church, I sat in amazement. Then it all came forcibly  down, “..and knoweth not that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked-.” (Rev. 3:17)

I had been invited to one of our local churches for the Sabbath. Some new friends whom I had recently met invited me to come worship with them so I took them up on their offer. I was excited to visit one of the churches where I had never been before.

I found it small yet very clean and simple. I arrived early enough to enjoy the bible study.  One of the first things I had noticed upon entering was several young women, some as young as 13-14 I suppose, wearing very short mini-skirts. Some with high heels as well. If I didn’t know better I would have thought I was entering a youthful discotheque.  This was not good in God’s house. The place where His word said that He calls  His “temple”. His holy place.

Keep in mind I was not there to “snoop” around. I was there to worship our Lord and enjoy the fellowship. But when something is right in front of you, we must not shrink back from ignoring it and start whistling a happy tune, looking away as it were. It should genuinely bother us. Remember what we have learned about “sighing and crying” for the abominations in the church?

“The class who do not feel grieved over their own spiritual declension, nor mourn over the sins of others, will be left without the seal of God. ” (Test. for the Church, vol. 5, p.211)

Our prophetess also  said –

“While others try to throw a cloak over the existing evil, and excuse
the great wickedness everywhere prevalent, those who have a zeal for God’s honour and a love for souls will not hold their peace to obtain favour of any. Their righteous souls are vexed day by day with the unholy works and conversation of the unrighteous.” (Test. for the Church, vol. 5, p.210)

As I have noticed this poor dressing in my own church on occasions,  I was hoping to see God-fearing people showing a higher standard and  proper reverence in “His house” in this other church. Sadly, what I saw was a real need for better shepherds to lead the flock there.

So I stayed for the rest of the service and had a chance to mingle with some of the members after, as they invited me to their lunch next door. I had been impressed with one of the young men there who had spoken in the Sabbath class. So I handed him one of the business cards I carry showing this blog site. So all was not fruitless I pray.

But as I got home the Lord had impressed upon my heart to say something about this. I had received the church program and noticed that the church leaders phone numbers were listed. So I decided to talk to the main shepherd, the head pastor.

I picked up the phone and gave him a call. After pleasantries I told him how I enjoyed the service for the most part, however, I told him that the Lord had placed upon my heart to let him know that I saw some things that were not right in his church. He responded “and what was that?” Then I spoke about the several young ladies dressed with short mini-skirts and high heels.

He was caught off guard for a moment and there was silence. Then he said, “what other criticism do you have?”  At this  it was my turn to get caught off guard.  I thought quickly and said that there was quite a bit of loud unnecessary talking in the Lord’s sanctuary. “What else?” he said again. At this point I told him “that’s all for now”.

Then he proceeded to say that maybe those were visitors. The rest of the conversation was one of denial. The attitude was one of indifference. Although he did invite me to come back again. Will I see a change? The Spirit of Prophecy gives us many warnings of the wrong attitude.

“The prejudice which has arisen against us because we have reproved the wrongs that God has shown me existed, and the cry that has been raised of harshness and severity, are unjust. God bids us speak, and we will not be silent. If wrongs are apparent among His people, and if the servants of God pass on indifferent to them, they virtually sustain and justify the sinner, and are alike guilty and will just as surely receive the displeasure of God; for they will be made responsible for the sins of the guilty.

In vision I have been pointed to many instances where the displeasure of God has been incurred by a neglect on the part of His servants to deal with the wrongs and sins existing among them. Those who have excused these wrongs have been thought by the people to be very amiable and lovely in disposition, simply because they shunned to discharge a plain Scriptural duty. The task was not agreeable to their feelings; therefore they avoided it.” (Test. for the Church, vol. 3, p. 265-266)

So we see from the above that we have a duty to speak up. And that in so doing we are letting , first, our ever watching King and Savior, and secondly, our beloved brethren, know that we care for their souls and don’t want them to be cut down in the soon to come church judgment.

Scripture also gives us a clear picture of the end-time cleansing of His house.  “In that day the Lord will take away the finery of the anklets, the headbands, and the crescents; the pendants, the bracelets, and the scarves; the headdresses, the armlets, the sashes, the perfume boxes, and the amulets; finger rings, nose rings,the festal robes, the mantles, the cloaks, and the handbags; mirrors, fine linen garments, head ornaments, and shawls.

Now it will come about that instead of sweet perfume there will be putrefaction; Instead of a belt, a rope; Instead of well-set hair, a plucked-out scalp; Instead of fine clothes, a donning of sackcloth; And branding instead of beauty” (Isaiah 3:18-24).

This describes the very terrible day known as the “dreadful day of the Lord” (Mal. 4:5) and the labeling and branding of those who defiantly did not reform in the dress. Now is our time to reform and get our dress in simplicity and compliance with the honor due our King.

“Those who have too little courage to reprove wrong, or who through indolence or lack of interest make no earnest effort to purify the family or the church of God, are held accountable for the evil that may result from their neglect of duty. We are just as responsible for evils that we might have checked in others by exercise of parental or pastoral authority as if the acts had been our own.(Patriarchs and Prophets, p.578)

“There are ever those who will despise the one who dares to reprove sin. But when required, reproof must be given. Paul directs Titus to rebuke a certain class sharply, that they may be sound in the faith. And how shall the reproof be given? Let the apostle answer: “With all long-suffering and doctrine.” The one at fault must be shown that his course is not in harmony with the Word of God. But never should the wrongs of God’s people be passed by indifferently. Those who faithfully discharge their unpleasant duties under a sense of their accountability to God, will receive his blessing.” (Signs of the Times, Sept. 16, 1880)

” God expects us to impart to others the knowledge that He has given us. It is His purpose that divine and human instrumentalities shall unite in the proclamation of the warning message.

So far as his opportunities extend, everyone who has received the light of truth is under the same responsibility as was the prophet of Israel to whom came the word: “Son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at My mouth, and warn them from Me. When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.” Ezekiel 33:7-9. (Test. for the Church, vol. 9, p.19)

In closing, let us remember that the church is not a country club. It’s the place where the Lord has promised He’d meet us corporately every Sabbath. When we dress carefully and modestly, we show Him holy reverence, for after all we are in the presence of the maker of the universe! So let us not shrink back from doing our God-given duty, when the Spirit  leads us,  to reach out and warn those who are heading for disaster. This is indeed  –true Christian love.

For more specific counsel on dress reform see Ellen White’s chapter on “Simplicity in Dress”  in volume 4 of the Testimonies.

The Great Orchestrator

March 23, 2013

As I go on in my walk I am more and more aware of how awesome of a God we serve. In Scripture we know that His word says, “..with God all things are possible” (Matt.19:26). The daily movements, the planning , the reactions, just the great orchestration of it all!  He truly is as the song says, “How Great Thou Art”. Let’s look at some of the specifics of the orchestrating of God.

Recently there were a couple of examples of God’s orchestrating . In my service repair business I am often called to several job locations around the city. About a week ago, I was called to do a repair job. I met a nice woman, we’ll call Laura (name changed).

We exchanged niceties and then she led me to the kitchen where her disposal was broken. But I stopped at her counter and looked at her many pictures of Jesus and some Scripture passages. We stopped there and I commented, “Oh I see you’re a Christian.”  Little did I know instead of continuing on and inspecting the unit, I would be there at that counter talking with her for what seemed like 30 minutes!

As we chatted I learned that she was a Catholic. I explained that I also was once a Catholic (being raised one). As we discussed the things of God, I sensed a very unusual dedication for the Lord. The Holy Spirit was working on me, saying to listen to her carefully. We both seemed to interact in a deeper level and I marvelled at how she really wanted to know the Lord more closely.

As we talked, I learned that she had been pleading with the Lord. She often wasn’t sensing His presence and her walk was very intermittent. She also had been sighing and crying. I had mentioned some of the basics such as keeping ALL 10 Commandments as the way to know God on a deeper level. Obviously as a Catholic, I expected her to politely disagree about which day was the “Lord’s day”. But she listened keenly as I explained how the Roman empire was instrumental in changing the Lord’s day from Saturday to Sunday.

She also told of her sighing at work. Her boss was a frequent 3rd Commandment breaker. He would say JC this and JC that. She had told him she preferred he didn’t say that, but that only fueled him for more breaking.

As many of you know from our studies in the Lord’s current message to us, the Elijah message, it requires us to show we really love our Lord by “sighing and crying” for the sins done in our own life and in the church. So it was clear to me she was sighing for the sake of the Lord. His Holy Name was being mis-used. Although she doesn’t have the light of the Sabbath and other truths, she was expressing true love for the Lord.

Finally after our lengthy discussion I finally got to check out the unit. But before we finished we agreed that I would lend her the 5 part DVD set of Hal Holbrook’s “The Seventh Day”. But it was clear to me that the Lord had guided me to her. She was honestly seeking the truth and as such I was part of His orchestration of events.

We are told in (John 16:13) “..When He, the Spirit of Truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth.”  So as a true seeker of the Lord and His truth, Laura’s path and mine came together. If she continues to want the truth and nothing but the truth, she’ll find it. “Ask and it will be given you, seek and you will  find, knock and the door shall be opened for you “(Matt 7:7).

The next story occurred about a week ago as well. Cathy (name changed) and I had been Facebook friends for about 2 years. She was a frequent Godsloveandlaw blog reader. She and I had emailed now and then and had a cordial friendly relationship. What struck me about her, was similar to Laura. She was a truth seeker and a walk advancer. They both had these  traits in common. They both mentioned to me that they would gladly accept being unpopular if it meant knowing the Lord and His straight truth.

What struck me is that both had mentioned that they knew that all who live Godly would suffer persecution. So Cathy and I chatted off and on and as many SDA were learning, she was interested in the Elijah message. As she was seeking to advance in her walk, the last light from the Lord, the Elijah message was very intriguing to her.  As she learned more and more, she would send a question or two to me for advice.  I sensed her progress was being guided from the hand of the Lord.

 A couple of weeks ago we finally had a chance to talk directly by phone. It was for over an hour. I had sent her some CD’s and DVD’s of the message and she had reviewed a some of it. So she had some questions.

But as we talked she gave me some of her history. Soon I learned that she also was a sigh and crier. She told of the story how she, being a health therapist, was appalled when her church had a lunch a while back and had donuts and pastries full of sugar for the members. Her field involves colonics and other clean out methods, to help rid the body of toxins which cause disease.

So she went to the lady in charge of the meals and let her know that those sugar packed denured of vitamins and mineral foods were worse than worthless. Instead of listening carefully to Cathy, who was trying to keep the Lord’s temple pure and clean, the lady took offense and later complained to others that Cathy was off base.

So what do we see from Cathy’s standing up for true principles? Mocking and derision from those who aren’t willing to be corrected. “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble…” (James 4:6). Cathy assured me that her advice was given in a loving manner, yet even this approach was rebuffed.

From the stories we mentioned, one thing is common. The sighers and criers were heard from by our Great Orchestrator. He then guided them into my path, that I might help them further in discovering advanced light. This is how the Great I Am works. He knows our hearts and when we show Him we are for real and want to know of His presence and love, we’ll find Him. “Draw near to God and He will draw near to  you” (James 4:8).

Also they both are desirous of advancement in their walk. Our prophetess said some great words concerning this, “When God’s people are at ease, and satisfied with their present enlightenment, we may be sure that He will not favour them. It is His will that they should be ever moving forward, to receive the increased and ever increasing light that is shining for them.” (5T pp. 708, 709).

” Those who will devote their powers to the study of God’s Word, and especially the prophecies referring to these last days, will be rewarded by the discovery of important truths.” (Ms 75, 1899, pp. 4,5. [Untitled Manuscript, May 11, 1899] — may be found as Manuscript release #54 in Manuscript Releases, Vol. 1, pp. 195-196).

“We must not think, ‘Well, we have all the truth, we understand the main pillars of our faith, and we may rest on this knowledge.’ The truth is an advancing truth, and we must walk in the increasing light.” (RH: March 25, 1890).

So let us be mindful of the Great Orchestrator, and how He is ever ready and willing to help us advance in our walk. We just have to “want to”. As Laodiceans we have to fight the ever tempting attitude of self complacency. If we seek–we find.

Stepping up to the Plate

February 2, 2013

“Indeed, all who live Godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution” (2 Tim. 3:12).

What do we notice with this word of God? We see a –promise. Notice it doesn’t say “may suffer” it says, “shall  suffer”. I remember when I first became a SDA member I read that verse then I began to ponder. I thought  “Um? That really doesn’t apply to my life. I mean I really don’t have anyone or anything “persecuting” me. My walk is rather pleasant. I am trying to live a good Godly life, yet how come I don’t see any of that in my life, what am I missing?”

I seriously contemplated this. Little did I know I would indeed find out later with full understanding,  just what this truth is and how it works. Let us look into this important aspect of our walk with Christ.

As I pondered this aspect of my walk, I thought, “Well the only thing close to me being persecuted is maybe my online debates with Sunday keepers, as they would deride me and say that I wasn’t right with Christ, etc.” But this was a big stretch.

Our Lord gave some direct words about what He thinks about this subject, and they are very clear. “Blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.” (Luke 7:23) We’ll explain how this verse ties in with suffering persecution later in this post. Next we see one of the most direct and plain Scriptures on our subject.

“Blessed are you when men hate you, and when they exclude you, and revile you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man’s sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, for in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.” (Luke 6:22-23)

So after reading so far, we can ask, “Ok this is all plain but how does this really fit in today? How can we who are professing Christ, really suffer much, in our religious free society? Aren’t those days past? And if we aren’t suffering persecution  for Christ in some aspect, are we living Godly, despite what His word says?” There is only one true answer– no we are not. His words must stand as they read, and the truth said must apply.We  must dig deep to ask –What can we do to live Godly?

How does one’s  life  today, within our Seventh Day Adventism  cause our people to want to exclude  us, mock us,  to demote or cast us out from their company? It can only be when we decide to boldly proclaim the Lord’s message of the hour, the straight testimony. Ellen White explains ” Now as in former ages, the presentation of a truth that reproves sins and errors of the times will excite opposition.” ( Great Controversy, p 458).  “We have more to fear from within than from without. The hindrances to strength and success are far greater from the church itself than from the world.” (Review and Herald, March 22,1887).

The different forms of persecution can be mocking, derailment, slander , false accusations, and of course physical abuse. And as we look at the history of our church, the ones who suffered persecution were the ones who “stepped up to the plate”. Each of the prophets suffered as they spoke the straight unpopular truth.

So this brings me back to how I learned what it meant to be persecuted. When I came into our SDA church I learned that our church was indeed the “remnant church of God”. We are the ones professing the Commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus (SOP). But as I was not content to sit on this knowledge, I searched Scripture and EGW writing regularly and prayerfully. Then on one fateful Sabbath around the end of May, 2011, I found an online audio sermon called “The 144,000, who are they?”  This was no accident, for the Spirit of Truth was indeed guiding.

I listened spellbound to the truths said (from Scripture and EGW) and I thought “Wow! Why haven’t I been taught this in our church?” So I undertook a serious study into the new truths I learned and it caused a complete 180% change in my understanding of our Lord’s plans. As I mentioned before,  the Lord’s last prophet expounded on the Old Testament writings and Revelation, so that clear light began to flood my mind and soul.

I had become a semi-regular pre-Sabbath school speaker and went up for maybe 20-25 minutes each time. Each time, I talked on the “straight truth” despite the church custom of the normal “peace and safety” message. Surprisingly I received mostly a heart warm response from several in our church.

Do you remember what our prophetess said above? “..the presentation of a truth that reproves sins and errors of the times will excite opposition.”  That is exactly what happened. Some could not bear the testimony and soon a couple complaints went to the higher-ups. “Many visions have been given to the effect that we must..occupy a position to stir up the people of God, for they are asleep in their sins (Test. for the Church, Vol. 1, p.247).

So let’s fast forward to the last few months.  I was called into the pastors office a few months ago and asked if I was a “Davidian”. I answered affirmatively.  “Blessed is he who is not offended of Me”(Luke 7:23). Then after the 3 against 1 meeting was over, I got demoted from  the deacon position I had. Then a couple of months later the church council held a church meeting to discuss “Davidian” topics. I was there.

As the meeting later progressed the “head elder” came up front and began his monologue on “his take” on Davidians and their beliefs. I silently listened and held my peace as he uttered falsehood after falsehood. Among other things he said “I want you to know that the teachings of the Davidians have been studied by our church, and found to be in  error.” Although another falsehood, I remained silent until he said ‘This brother came into our church and got baptised and didn’t tell us he was a Davidian”. At that point I had to speak up against the lies. I let him and the rest know that this was not true, for I accepted the message about one year after I was baptised.

Anyway to make the story short, I received at least 4 or 5 un-solicited statements from church members  that night,  backing up my character and basically supporting my church contributions. So I went home that night shaking my head in amazement, I thought “I now know what it’s like to be slandered and  derailed.” Church persecution had riled its ugly head and I now look back and understand the words said in (2 Tim. 3:12).

So that brings us to the most important question. In our SDA church today, what message will most likely get you “persecuted” ? Only one really stands out, it’s the Elijah message of the Shepherd’s Rod. If you can take the time, you will find in many of brother Houteff’s writings, the history of many believers in the message being persecuted, and sadly it still happens today. Why is this? The Elijah message is one of revival and reformation, and how to get sealed before the great and dreadful day of the Lord. Where’s the evil? Where’s the basis for all the incidents of abuse upon our courageous members who have spoken the truth?

It can only be traced to the king of evil-Satan. He knows beyond doubt that, as brother Houteff said, “..For Satan well knows that if he loses now, he loses forever.”(General Conference Special, p.6).

One thing is so very clear, now is not the time to sit back and say “Oh yes,  the Elijah message is true, but I’ll let others proclaim it, I don’t want to be unpopular or get in trouble with anyone.” Let me ask you, when the approx. 1 million people came out of Egypt, how many made it to the promised land over the age of 20?  TWO.  How many were there that were lukewarm toward the two courageous men, Joshua and Caleb? Don’t you think that there were hundreds if not thousands that QUIETLY supported and respected the courageous actions of those two? I would most definitely say there was indeed-many! Did the Lord spare them for “thinking” about supporting them? No, he did not.

He saved only those two who –stepped up to the plate! Our Lord gave them vocal cords and they used them! And what is the cost of us stepping up to the plate? We shall be persecuted.  But you will find yourself on the most powerful One of the universe’s side. And those who persecute you? ” Those who rise up against warning and make no effect the plain words of reproof prompted by the Spirit of God, will find, in the great day of final reckoning, an account against them which they will not wish to meet (Signs of the Times, Oct. 4th, 1883).

In closing my dear brethren, let us not shrink back from our duty today. God is calling each one to do something. Start small and just where you’re at. Then as the Holy Spirit guides you, you’ll find a clear path to guiding and warning your particular sphere of influence. Let’s not fear opposition, for as we have learned, a Godly life will always meet opposition.Do we care enough for our brothers and sisters to warn them of the upcoming church disaster?(Mal.3:1-3)

“I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot (Rev.3:14-16)…Laodiceans..are neither cold nor hot; they occupy a neutral postition..The True Witness hates lukewarmness. He loathes the indifference of this class of persons (Test.for the Church, Vol. 4, p.87).

  Our Lord is near the door, and it’s the church door He’s about to enter, let’s be prepared and go to work!

A portrait of Courage

September 8, 2012

The man slowly and deliberately walked onto the dusty road. His eyes fixed straight ahead on his target. Just minutes before there had been mayhem and upheaval. A sheriff lay shot dead at the hands of a cold blooded killer. The town had been shot up (aka hurrahed) by the trouble making cowboys. Many had “liquored” themselves  up pretty good. What was about to happened was indeed a –portrait of courage. Let’s look into the true scene of a man possessed of  heroic courage that few men have ever possessed.

Four years ago the Lord in his infinite wisdom had drawn me to learn of this man for one main reason– courage. He wanted me learn of his real life story in order to prepare for a work that must be done, which must also involve courage. The books I read concerning this man were numerous, as I couldn’t put them down. The Lord’s objective was accomplished, my interest was keen  and the lessons they taught me fully registered. Let’s examine more of courage in action.

We need to back up the story a bit. The towns had many saloons in those days and in this particular town, at that time, there was a huge high stakes poker game. But as the game got bigger, two well known “bad apples” with notorious reputations came into town, Ben Thompson and his brother Bill, and sat in on the game. Ben Thompson in particular was “the” bad guy who reputation was far and wide. Soon enough, the liquor got the tempers flying. A fight broke out between on Bill Thompson and one of the other players, with Bill being socked to the ground from his chair.

The two brothers got up and cussed their way to the saloon door. The sheriff, C.B Whitney, soon heard about the ruckus and came to the scene. He tried to play the peace maker but shortly after, Bill Thompson, no doubt still high on alcohol and with adrenalin cruising through his veins, said “I’ll get a sheriff if I don’t get anybody else”. Just then he turned to see the sheriff and blasted him at point blank in the sheriff’s breast.

Our young courageous man (hereafter referred as CM) was close near by and held the sheriff in his arms as the dying sheriff said  “I’m done, get me home.” As the commotion started to build, Bill Thompson beelined out of Ellsworth but his brother Ben still hung around. He saddled up and gathered in the streets with his guns yelling at the town. Many bad men from Texas, some witnesses say in excess of 100,  were in the town and joined Ben in his tirade. Now it  seemed the evil men were taunting the “good” men up and down the town, shooting off their guns in defiance, asking if anyone wanted any more trouble, just come outside and get it.

In those days the  “western towns”  were fast and loose. If the sheriff didn’t lay down the law , the law layed down for the bad players. CM was a bystander and observer to all the action. He saw the good intentions of the sheriff but he also saw  serious cowardness follow. Two other law makers, the Marshall and the deputy Marshall, both were called upon by the mayor to take charge of the situation. Both declined. Such great odds against them, they thought twice of risking their lives for peace and justice. CM had also be close enough to hear their excuses spoken to the mayor.

CM, moved by the total failed justice, said to the mayor “Nice police force you got”. The mayor responded, “Who are you??”  “Just a looker on” CM replied. Incensed, the mayor said “Well, don’t talk so much, you haven’t even got a gun”. Then perhaps the most life changing words were spoken by CM. He was to begin a career of one of the most fearless and feared lawman in the old west. CM responded ” it’s none of my business but if it was, I’d get me a gun and arrest Ben Thompson or kill him.”

The coward Marshall was close by and said to the mayor “Don’t pay any attention to that kid , Jim.” Now the mayor was even more incensed and responded to the Marshall ” You’re fired Norton” and he looked over at the deputy Marshall and said “You too , Morco”.He grabbed the Marshall’s badge from his shirt and turned to CM and said “I’ll make this your business. You’re Marshall of Ellsworth. Here’s your badge. Go into Bebee’s and get some guns. I order you to arrest Ben Thompson.”

CM turned and walked into the gun store and picked up a pair of “used”  second hand 45’s. The Bebee clerk recalled how the three (mayor and the two marshalls) stood huddled together on the walkway as CM walked out of the gun shop and passed by them alone and onto the street. Not one of them offered to help the young man, not that he wanted any anyway.

Let’s pick up with the story again. CM now was out in the middle of the street walking  deliberately towards the many, many bad men still on their horses. CM continued on until he came to about 50 yards from their ring leader, Ben Thompson. As mentioned, some witnesses claimed that over 100 bad men were on horses or standing round in the town as CM approached alone. His gun belts at his side clearly visible to all. One false or hesitant move by him could start an avalanche of bullets flying towards him.

CM recalls the moments “I knew what I would do before the mayor pinned Brocky Jack’s badge on my shirt.”  Continuing, “In the first place, I knew better than to walk out of Bebee’s with a gun in my hand. If I had, I would have been filled with lead before I reached the road. But I also knew that, as long as I did not draw, the Texas men would leave it to Ben to make  the play; he would have turned and shot down anyone who dared to cut loose before he opened the ball. Whatever happened must first be between him and me.”

When CM was about 40 yards, Ben called out to the approaching man “What do you want CM?” Apparently Ben was acquainted with him, though not closely. CM  spoke “I want you Ben” as he walked forward. Keep in mind the backup Ben had at that moment, watching for their leader to start the action. Ben kept watching as CM walked closer still. At about thirty yards, many witnesses claim something strange happened. The lone act of courage froze the bad guys (or was it the Lord’s direct hand in observing this young man’s desire for justice?)

The notorious outlaw became submissive to the approaching newly badged young sheriff . He said “I rather talk than fight”. The Texas bad man were no doubt shocked by this turn of events and his words spoken. Afterall it was at least 100 to 1 and none of them want to go to jail. CM  not wanting to lose his edge responded ” I’ll get you either way Ben”. “Wait a minute” said Thompson, “what do you want me to do?”  “Throw your shotgun into the road and put up your hands, and tell your friends to stay out of this play” CM responded.

Finally the overpowering act of courage caused Ben Thompson to say ” Will you stop and let me talk to you?” CM halted. He now knew he could take Thompson, alive or dead. Let’s stop here and note what happened. CM did not love his life more than to see justice and peace be established. Our Lord said “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called son’s of God” (Matt.5:9) Here is a powerful lesson that this one man who courageously dared to do the “right thing” against evil adversaries, had the Lord’s direct undivided attention and therefore His divine help.

CM took hold of the notorious bad man and walked him straight into jail, right in front of all his friends! What a sight. No wonder after this one episode CM’s reputation of a fearless lawman went through out the country. This is just one of dozens of documented (eye witnesses, newspaper accts. etc.) episodes of CM’s courage to do the right thing and enforce justice and the law against the majority. The real man’s name, as many of you no doubt guessed, was Wyatt Earp.

The above description is based from Stuart Lake’s book ” Wyatt Earp-Frontier Marshall”.

Down through history we have seen that our Lord has mostly used men with a particular characteristic in common –courage. All the prophets had it, the three young men had it (saved from the fire), Daniel, David and others. It’s almost like the Lord saying ” step up to the plate and I’ll back you up completely”.  (Isaiah 58:8) “..And your righteousness shall go before you; The glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard. Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; You shall cry, and He will say “here I am.”

In today’s church situation we are facing a small crisis, soon to get bigger. It will require courage, the ability to stand up for the Lord’s truth and His last tough solemn message. The people who will decide to stand on the Lord’s side will be the minority. The general leadership has rejected for the most part the Elijah message, just like it also rejected the Lord’s previous message in 1888 (Righteousness by Faith). Do we stand with the “popular” crowd, the majority? Or do we stand with the few, the minority.

In closing, we must learn to stand for righteousness and justice just like Wyatt Earp did. Our church standing will be shown clearly to the Lord–do we stand on his word as spoken through his prophets, especially His last prophet(to get His seal)?

 We don’t know much about Wyatt’s spiritual convictions(whether he came to know the Lord before his death at 80), but the one thing we do know, was that in each and every situation where the odds were stacked highly against him–he came through for law and order, and it prevailed. Standing firm for the right thing in the right situation. And the Lord was his “rear guard” every time, because he took a courageous stand for right doing (righteousness).

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