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Beware of Self-Righteousness Январь 28, 2011

Posted by Lee Goodall in Blogs, Актуальная проблема -problem of today, Библейские уроки-Bible lessons, Цитаты Великих - Great Quotes, eMagazines, Today's Devotional, Uncategorized.
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‘…you who judge others do these very same things.’ Romans 2:1

A woman looked out of her window every morning and commented on the dirty laundry on her neighbour’s line. One day she noticed it was sparkling clean: ‘Maybe she’s using a new detergent,’ she remarked. ‘No,’ said her husband. ‘I got up early and cleaned our windows.’ Hello! When Paul talks about ‘…greed, hate, envy, murder, quarrelling, deception…gossip’ (Romans 1:29 NLT), it’s tempting to think it doesn’t apply to you. Then he says, ‘You are just as bad…you…do these very same things.’ Maybe you’ve never embezzled money, but have you ever short-changed somebody? Or taken an ‘iffy’ tax deduction? How about when you’re stuck in traffic, or you overhear some juicy gossip? Phil Yancey says: ‘Murder and adultery differ from hatred and lust only by degree…Paul reserves his most scathing comments for self-righteous people…A Pharisee of Pharisees, he knew the pattern…the danger that accompanies a feeling of moral superiority. Just as denial keeps you from seeing a doctor about a lump or lesion…denial of sin leads to worse consequences…I accepted a speaking engagement from some Christians involved in Twelve-Step Programmes…As I pondered what to say…it occurred to me that what recovering alcoholics confess daily-personal failure and the need for grace…represent high hurdles for those of us who take pride in independence and self-sufficiency. Romans 3:10 NKJV says, ‘…»There is none righteous…’ and God’s grace is the only solution. It comes free of charge, apart from the law and…human efforts towards self-improvement…we need only hold out open, needy hands-the most difficult gesture for a self-righteous person.’

Ucb booklet

Addiction is a massive issue for Christians – James 1:13-15 Декабрь 14, 2009

Posted by Alyosha Kolodiy in Today's Devotional.
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Rev Mark Brown

James 1:13-15 : Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

Yesterday I published a post about how to deal with addictions including internet pornography addiction, and the response has been interesting. The post set a record in terms of the number of visitors to my blog in one day, and the number and nature of the comments and messages I have received have been very moving. It would be fair to say, that based on this response there are lots of Christians (male and female) battling with an addiction. I was also alerted to some amazing resources, organisations and websites that can help someone out with an addiction. Many of these are listed in the comments which can be read at: click here. Though I don’t have a pornography addiction, my addiction is the internet, specifically Facebook. I simply spend way too much time on Facebook. In part it is a product of the pages I have started, the friendships I have made, but I can see it is affecting my family life, my relaxation time and so on. So recently I put in place some self imposed guidelines to attempt to reduce the amount of time I spend online. Within every addiction is a series of temptations, and the amazing James 1: 13-15 has some very interesting ideas about temptation. The first realisation is that temptation is my problem, I choose to be tempted, no one is forcing me. The greek behind the word temptation can also mean to attempt, test or try, so in being tempted I act, I test, I try something. It is my choice alone to be on Facebook when I should be asleep! And this aspect of choice is actually key, I can choose not to engage in the behaviour, and though I might be tempted, I can choose not to follow through. The temptation is present, but I choose not to act. For it isn’t the presence of temptation that causes sin, it is my choice to give in to the temptation that causes sin. So my prayer is that those who are struggling with addiction make wise choices, excellent choices, so as to loosen the bonds of addiction. Me included. God bless, Rev Mark http://www.facebook.com/MarkBrown.page

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« Dealing with an Internet Porn addiction (or any addiction)

IS YOUR HEART OPEN TOWARD GOD? Июль 6, 2009

Posted by Alyosha Kolodiy in Актуальная проблема -problem of today, Трибуна братства - The brotherhood tribune, eMagazines, Today's Devotional.
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By Francis Frangipane

Is the door of your heart open toward God? Can the Spirit of Jesus Christ come in and speak with you? Are you defenseless to His voice? Can you sense both His pleasure and His displeasure? For us to become sensitive to divine realities, we must live with the door of our hearts open. It is impossible to do the will of God otherwise.

King Hezekiah commanded the priests to carry the uncleanness out from the holy place. The call to clean the holy place was not an option; it was a command. «So the priests went in to the inner part of the house of the Lord to cleanse it, and every unclean thing which they found in the temple of the Lord they brought out to the court of the house of the Lord» (2 Chr. 29:16, NASB).

When the priests entered the holy place, they entered alone; the rest of Israel was in the outer court and beyond. Here, privately before God, they were to remove those things that were defiling this sacred place. No one else had seen these desecrations. They could have remained in secret, and none except the priests would have known; but they did not. They brought out the unclean things. What was unholy was exposed publicly and removed.

From where did these abominations arise? Predominantly they were the sins of their forefathers—the traditions and offenses handed down to them from the wicked generation who preceded them. The careless approach to holiness, the unbelief toward the promises of God, and the idolatry and worship of man-made things were the products of a generation turned from God. They gave to their children, as a legacy, a society oppressed by sin and the devil.

In the new covenant temple, the church, it is our private, inner lives that need this deep cleansing. We have inherited traditions that justify and reinforce darkness of soul within us. Most Christians have little hope that purity of heart is even attainable. The revival that will turn a nation begins in the trembling unveiling of our hearts, in the removal of what is defiled and hidden within us.

I will tell you a mystery. It is in this very place, this chamber of our deepest secrets, that the door to eternity is found. If the Father is near enough to «see in secret» He is close enough to be seen in secret as well. If He has entered us, we can, in truth, enter Him. The key to entering the presence of God is intimacy, and intimacy is secrets shared. To ascend the hill of the Lord, to stand in the holy place, we must have clean hands and a pure heart; we cannot lift up our souls toward falsehood (see Ps. 24:3-4). At this door of eternity we must renounce those things hidden because of shame and, in humility of soul, receive Christ’s cleansing word.

Our goal is not merely to be «good» but to see God and, in seeing Him, to do what He does. However, John tells us that he who seeks to «see Him just as He is … purifies himself, just as He is pure» (1 John 3:2-3, NKJV). We can be assured that each step deeper into the Lord’s presence will reveal areas in our hearts that need to be cleansed. Do not be afraid. When the Spirit shows you areas of sin, it is not to condemn you but to cleanse you.

Let me give you an example. My wife set herself apart to seek the Lord. Her cry during this time was, «Lord, I want to see You.» As she sought the Lord, however, He began to show her certain areas of her heart where she had fallen short. She prayed, «Lord, this is not what I asked for; I asked to see You, not me.» The Holy Spirit comforted her, saying, «Only the pure in heart can see God.»

In the same way, the Lord desires His church to see Him as well. Thus, He is exposing the areas in us that are unclean. If we will walk as Jesus walked, we must remember that Christ did only the things He saw the Father do (see John 5:19). Out of the purity of His heart He beheld God and then revealed His glory.

This cleansing must become a way of life, but it does not have to take a lifetime. For Hezekiah and the people with him, it occurred in a matter of eight days.

Our prayer should be to bring all the defilement of our flesh and spirit out of the secret chambers of our hearts and give them over to the Lord so that our hearts would be purged.

«O God, thoroughly cleanse my heart; purify me quickly! In Jesus’ name.»

Adapted from When the Many Are One, by Francis Frangipane, copyright 2009, published by Charisma House. In this book the author calls us back to oneness with Christ, and through Him oneness with other Christians. With the character and power of Christ in our midst, the church can again bring transformation to our communities, our nation and our world. To order a copy click on this link:

PRAYER POWER FOR THE WEEK OF 7/6/2009

This week ask God to cleanse and purify you as He desires. Pray that He would create in you a clean heart and renew a right spirit within you. Pray for unity in the body of Christ. Pray that we lift up Jesus as individuals, churches and communities. Continue to thank God for the freedom of worship and speech that we still enjoy in our nation. Pray for revival and that our president and his administration will seek God for wisdom and heed His direction regarding our nation, Israel and the world. Continue to pray for our military and their families. Psalm 51:10; I John 3: 2-3; John 5:19


Visit us at www.spiritledwoman.com (click on the address to get there now) where you’ll find encouragement, inspiration, fellowship and fun. Please feel free to forward this Power Up! to a friend by clicking the «Send to a Friend» button at the top of this newsletter. (Don’t use the forward button on the toolbar of your computer. If you do and one of the people you send it to «unsubscribes,» you’ll be unsubscribed as well and we won’t know it. This won’t happen if you click «Send to a Friend.»)

Специально для женщин от Spiritledwoman.com Июнь 8, 2009

Posted by Alyosha Kolodiy in Трибуна братства - The brotherhood tribune, Цитаты Великих - Great Quotes, eMagazines, Today's Devotional.
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timacy With God

 
They Can Tell You’ve Been With Jesus
| By Mike Bickle

Years ago while speaking to a group of new Christians, I noticed a beautiful, young, blonde girl across the room. I flipped out! I had never felt such intense emotions as those that filled me when I gazed across the room at Diane, the girl who was to become my wife. On our first date I was amazed that she seemed to share my feelings, and we became engaged after just one date.

My deep love for Diane and my desire to be with her helped me understand the love Christ feels for His bride. The prayer He prayed just before His death, recorded in John 17, is especially revealing. He said, «Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am» (v. 24, NKJV). Here was my Lord, only hours before His agonizing death on Calvary, crying out to the Father with intense cravings for His bride—for me!

He was consumed with love for His bride and longed to have her with Him for eternity.

Toward the end of the prayer the focus changes from …. {Read more}

 

 

 
Say It, Sister! 
From Fear to Faith | By Lisa Bevere

Lisa Bevere lost an eye to cancer when she was five years old. The ordeal left her insecure, intimidated, and afraid to fulfill her purpose. But she released her fears to God and today He is using her to minister to women across the country. To watch Lisa’s inspiring testimony, click here.

 

 

 
Prayers Men Pray
Help! My Husband Is an Intercessor! | By Eddie Smith

«Could you come down out of the heavenlies long enough to give me a hand with this dirty laundry?»

Have you ever uttered those words in your home? Some wives have trouble pulling their husbands away from the TV set. Others struggle to keep them from bringing work home from the office. But a growing number of women these days are asking: «How do I deal with my husband, the intercessor?»

First, let me congratulate you women who are married to intercessors. Of all the ministries to which a man could …. {Read more}

Knowing God
God’s Passionate Love
| By Sam Storms

What does God think about when He thinks about you? When God meditates on you in His heart, what does He feel? When God focuses His eyes on your soul, what does He see? When God opens His mouth to speak of you, what does He say?

Perhaps many of you would answer those questions like this: He thinks badly of me; He feels repelled by me. He sees all my ugliness, and He says, Yuk!

Nothing could be further from the truth! Notwithstanding what …. {Read more}

 

 

 
The Lowe-Down
 Are You Addicted to S_ _? | By Valerie G. Lowe

Several years ago my friend mustered up the nerve to tell me about her struggle with lust. Even though she wasn’t dating anyone, she was afraid her fixation would eventually seduce her into having premarital sex.

Thinking about her problem made me want to blog about premarital sex, a topic I believe the church often shuns. But why? Christian singles have sex or want to have sex too. And though the Bible prohibits such behavior, that hasn’t stopped believers from going too far.

Sadly, some Christian singles behave as if there are no consequences to sex outside of marriage—but there are. Dr. Freda McKissic Bush, a Christian, a board-certified OB-GYN and co-author of Hooked: New Science on How Casual Sex Is Affecting Our Children, says premarital sex and extramarital affairs can unleash a host of …. {Read more}

 

 

 
Timeless Treasures
Grieve Not the Holy Spirit
| By Phoebe Palmer

Daily my heart is cleaving more closely to Christ and getting more detached from earthly objects. The weaning process is going on. I find the closer I get to the heart of Infinite Love—the nearer to the Son of Righteousness—the more sensitively do I feel, to my heart’s deepest core, everything that is contrary in spirit, word or action to the law of love.

If we do, indeed, get nearer to the Son of Righteousness, we cannot help but see with greater vividness …. {Read more}

Fueling the Fire
Finding Security in the Father
| By Brenda J. Davis

We’ve likely had many opportunities to learn that seeking acceptance from anyone other than God is sinful, not to mention futile. But the hurts we experience in life can sometimes leave us feeling such rejection that we become desperate for people’s approval. This sets us up for more heartache since no one can consistently give us the kind of approbation we need.

No human being can accurately assess our worth. Only our Creator …. {Read more}

 

 

Visit us at www.spiritledwoman.com (click on the address to get there now) where you’ll find encouragement, inspiration, fellowship and fun. Please feel free to forward this Power Up! to a friend by clicking the large «Tell a friend» button. (Don’t use the forward button on the toolbar of your computer. If you do and one of the people you send it to «unsubscribes,» you’ll be unsubscribed as well and we won’t know it. This won’t happen if you click «Tell a friend.»)

GOD HATES DIVORCE (Ml 2:16) — articles from Silvio Caddeo Май 30, 2009

Posted by Alyosha Kolodiy in Актуальная проблема -problem of today, Библейские уроки-Bible lessons, Библия говорит - Bible Speaks, Трибуна братства - The brotherhood tribune, Цитаты Великих - Great Quotes, Today's Devotional.
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The divorce and the leadership in the Church

Divorce is often associated with egoism, egocentrism, instability, lies and other sins, but because of the Israelites had hard hearts, the Lord permitted them to divorce (De 24:1. Mt 19:8). However, divorce was not part of the original plan of God (Ge 1:27; 2 :24. Mt 19:4-6) and should not be justified or welcomed among Christians.  

 In order to have a correct vision of the whole Divine Revelation, we have to underline that already before the coming of Jesus, the prophet Malachi had strongly spoken against divorce, cheating, violence and religious hypocrisy, “You ask, Why? It is because the Lord is acting as the witness between you and the wife of your youth, because you have broken faith with her, though she is you partner, the wife of your marriage covenant. Has not the Lord made them one? In flesh and spirit they are his. And why one? Because he was seeking godly offspring. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not be unfaithful to the wife of your youth. I hate divorce, says the Lord God of Israel, and I hate a man’s covering himself with violence as well as with his garment, says the Lord Almighty. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not be unfaithful” (Ml 2:14-16).    To understand the subject properly and not to be confused by the numerous human theories, we have always to remember that God hates divorce.

MATTHEW 5:31-32

Against divorce, Jesus spoke this way, «It has been said, Anyone who divorce his wife must give her a certificate of divorce. But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for immorality, causes her to become an adulteress, and anyone who marries the divorced woman commits adultery” (Mt 5:31-32).

The question that we should ask is: Why the one who repudiate his wife that has not been unfaithful causes her to become adulteress? If she has been faithful, how could she become adulteress? Could she become adulteress just because she has been repudiated by her husband?          

The answer for that enigma comes from Paul, “By example, according to the law, a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law of marriage. So then, if she married another man while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress, even though she marries another man” (Ro 7:2-3).

 Paul repeats about the same concept, “A woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives. But if her husband dies, she is free to marry anyone she wishes, but he must belong to the Lord. In my judgement, she is happier if she stays as she is – and I think that I too have the Spirit of God”

(1 Co 7:39-40).

 We have to remember that then, the woman did not have the right of ownership; she had always to depend from someone, from her father or from her husband. It was like that even in Québec about 50 years ago, when the woman did not have the authority to the ownership and to sign a check. At that time, to work outside of the house for a woman was considered an immorality. For that reason, to survive, for a repudiated woman it was necessary to remarry or to become a servant, where she was often raped by the master of the house. 

GOD HATES DIVORCE -full version of article

Defining Spiritual Maturity Май 16, 2009

Posted by Alyosha Kolodiy in Актуальная проблема -problem of today, Цитаты Великих - Great Quotes, Today's Devotional.
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STORY1~1A recent Barna survey shows that a majority of America’s churchgoers cannot define what spiritual maturity means. That’s a pretty astounding statistic considering the amount of churches and resources available to Christians in our country. At no time in history have so many people had so much access to books, classes, ministries and education geared toward growing their faith. Yet, most believers cannot articulate what a spiritually mature Christian looks like.

For many of you, that might not be surprising. A lot of Christian men and leaders have been complaining for years about the church’s lack of maturity.

But one of the more interesting stats from the study shows that the problem may be staring at us from the mirror. Nearly 90 percent of pastors said that a lack of spiritual maturity is the most significant, or one of the largest, problems facing the nation; yet a minority of pastors believe that spiritual immaturity is a problemin their church.

What a great «man excuse»:

«Sure—it’s a huge problem; just not for me and my friends.»

Now, to be fair, spiritual maturity is one of those things that is hard to define in a sound bite. It’s a multifaceted thing that you can more easily see in someone’s life than spell out in a sentence.

However, the most troubling stat from the study, for me, was that church leaders could not support the topic biblically. When asked to identify the most important portions of the Bible that define spiritual maturity, 75 percent of pastors gave generic answers, such as «the whole Bible» (33 percent), «the Gospels» (17 percent) or «the New Testament» (15 percent). Just 20 percent cited specific verses in their answer.

How are believers supposed to mature spiritually when our own leaders can’t offer biblical explanations for what that looks like?

The section of Scripture that stands out to me when thinking about spiritual maturity is Galatians 5:22-23: «But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.» God says to us that these qualities are evidence that someone is walking with Him. These are the signs of a Christian, and the more you see them in someone’s life, the more mature, or the more like Christ, that person is.

The beautiful thing about the fruit of the Spirit is that it’s not just a set of rules. In the survey, 81 percent of self-identified Christians said that «trying hard to follow the rules described in the Bible» is a good definition of spiritual health.

I don’t know about you, but most of the spiritually mature men and women I have known and looked up to in my life haven’t been «trying hard» to follow the rules, they just have such a close walk with God that they can’t help but display God’s character. That’s what separates our faith from other religions. We’re not trying desperately to obey the rules lest we get struck down. We have the Spirit, and He gives us a desire to do the things of God. The more you walk with Him; the more He changes you.

That’s what I think about spiritual maturity. How do you define it? What are you striving for in your walk with God, and what kind of believers do you look up to?

EMAGAZ~1