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Archive for February, 2015

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Lessons from Amos:
Walking with God

“Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” (Amos 3:3)

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Amos was a prophet during the reign of Jeroboam II (son of Joash), who ruled the northern ten tribes of Israel from 825 to 784 B.C. (2 Kings 14:23). Some 100 years earlier, Jeroboam I (son of Nebat) had led a rebellion against the son of Solomon and started the northern nation of Israel (1 Kings 12). In order to keep his people from returning to Jerusalem, Jeroboam I “made Israel to sin” (1 Kings 12:30; 16:26; etc) by developing a “new” religion centered on an image of a golden calf with idol temples in Bethel and Dan (1 Kings 12:28-29).

 Those northern tribes never did return to the worship of Jehovah but “sinned against the LORD,” and Israel “feared other gods” (2 Kings 17:7). The list of their sins is long and grevious in God’s sight.

  • They “did secretly those things that were not right against the LORD” (2 Kings 17:9).

  • Israel set up “images and groves in every high hill” (2 Kings 17:10). They “wrought wicked things to provoke the LORD to anger” (2 Kings 17:11).

  • They “worshipped all the host of heaven” (2 Kings 17:16).

  • They “used divination and enchantments, and sold themselves to do evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger” (2 Kings 17:17).

  • They “feared the LORD, and served their own gods” (2 Kings 17:33).

Amos was commissioned in those dark years to openly confront the nation to “walk” in “agreement” with the God they professed to worship.

Hypocrisy is at the core of the judgment and warnings that God recorded for us in the little book of Amos. We must learn the lessons or suffer the same judgment.

HMM III February 25, 2015-DAYS OF PRAISE 

http://www.icr.org/article/8476

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June
one day a girl came in on her bicycle.

she had another friend with her
and this friend’s father was president of the city college.
and she was an agnostic.
but i loved her anyway.
i wrote poetry with her;
i laughed with her.
i arm-wrestled with her on the floor;
i jogged with her;
i rode a ten-speed with her.
i shared Jesus with her everytime i got a chance.

she would call me some nights
and in the middle of of a conversation
she would slam the phone down in my ear.
i don’t know how often the phone slams in your ear
but i didn’t exactly appreciate it.
i mean after all,
she was the one who called me.
but i loved her.
although, i really shouldn’t say so
because sometimes i really wanted to give up.
and sometimes i really wanted to smack her in the mouth.
but Jesus in me loved her
through thick and thin.

and then one day seven months later
the phone rang.
she was sobbing and crying,
“ann,
i don’t know how to tell you
but today at school,
in an unexpected, obscure moment,
it came to me —
God has to be.
because no one in my life loved me the way you loved me.
if anybody can love me through my moods
and the drugs
and all my mess the way you loved me,
there has to be a God.
ann,
in an obscure moment today
i found Him.”

just about a month ago,
i got a letter from June.
she has Bible clubs everywhere.
Jesus is Lord of her life.
she’s out to win her family to Jesus.
she believes.
just because somebody loved her
through thick and thin
and you see, you can’t stop love.
love finds a way through.

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Excerpt:  “I’m Out To Change My World”  Ann Kiemel, 1974

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POCAINTA

https://ioan17.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/pocainta-poezie-crestina-reciatata-de-aurel-alazaroaie.mp3

Autor: Dionisie Giuchici

AUREL ALAZAROAIE Poezia _Pocainta.

Pocaință, pană albă destinată pentru zbor, Tu ești cea dintâi aripă care vei zbura spre nor, Nu spre norul cel de ploaie, ci spre norul glorios, Care-L va purta în slava, când va reveni, Christos

 Pocăința-I act de lege, decretat de Duhul Sfant, Prin Ioan Botezatorul, când slujea pe-acest pamant, Iar apoi, Mântuitorul, l-a-ntărit făcându-l plin, De-o mai mare experiență, pentru oricare creștin

 Fără actul pocăinței, nu există mântuire, El e actul ce rămâne pentru-ntreaga omenire, Pentru cultele de frunte, pentru cultele mai mici, Pocăința-I temelia oricea-I vrea tu ca să zici.

 Pocăința nu-I aceea că-ți formezi un chip ciudat, Incât toți să te cunoască după cum te-ai îmbrăcat, Dacă nu pătrunzi acolo, unde-I miezul, Ce transformă prima dată caracterul, Dacă nu pătrunzi acolo unde este conținutul, Tu nu știi ce-I pocăința chiar dacă-I platești tributul.

 Unii din creștini pun nume, mai ceva ca și părinții, Dar sub formă de-njosire, “voi sectanții, pocăiții”

Dacă ăștia-s pocăiții, dacă asta-I pocăința, Atunci voi cei mulți, “creștinii” ce sunteți, care-I credința?

 Isus când a dat decretul, “Pocăiți-vă” a spus, Pentru toată omenirea care crede în Isus, Nu a spus-o nici la culte, nici sectantilor, să știți, El a spus doar conținutul, să putem fi mântuiți.

 Omul și-a format hotare, și religii și grupări, Fiindcă nu e conținutul, de aceea-s dezbinări, Pocăința nu-i nici hulă, nici poreclă, ea-I un act, Care trebuie să-l facem că-I lăsat de Cel Prea-nalt.

 Pocăința-I renunțarea la tot ce se pare rău, Și-o întoarcere totală la Acel Ce-I Dumnezeu, Pocăința-I act în Sine, nașterea sfântă de Sus, Nașterea din Duh și apă, cum ne-a învățat Isus

 Fără nașterea aceasta, spune Isus, dragul meu, N-ai să vezi Împărăția Celui ce e Dumnezeu, Și când nașterea aceasta a pătruns în profunzime, Nu mai cânți în două strune, ai ieșit atunci din lume.

Atunci ești și tu copilul Împăratului de Sus, Atunci nu tu ești Stăpânul, ci Stăpânul e Isus.

 De aceea ni se cere să-nțelegem explicit, Ce înseamnă pocăință și ce-nseamnă pocăit.

Pân-aici am spus ce-nseamnă pocăința ca și act, Insă, hai, ca să vedem pocăința ca și FAPT.

 Hai ca să vedem și roada celui care e-n-credință, Celui care întelege ce înseamnă pocăința.

Că e mare diferență între cei ce-s dusi de val, Și-ntre cei care slujesc strict, după original.

 Într-o zi Botezătorul a strigat plin de credință:

“Faceți roade mai intâi vrednice de pocăință”.

Deci e importantă roada, rodul spune cine esti, Rodul îți va da valoarea și Stăpânul ce-L slujești.

 Tu prin felul de credință spui tot ce-ai avea de spus, Rodul tău va confirma dacă ești al lui Isus, Caracterul tău în slujbă dacă este sănătos, Va conduce și lucrarea, și pe tine, la Christos

 Dar de-i bolnav caracterul, vai de slujba care-o faci, Ori că-I mare, ori că-i mică, bine-ar fi atunci să taci.

Fraților, sunt multe lucruri care ne despart de Domnul, Pocăința este bună, nu modernă ca și omul.

 De păstrăm originalul cum Isus ne-a învățat, De păstrăm învățătura din Scripturi cu-adevărat, De rămânem în credință cum apostolii au spus, Noi suntem în siguranță, căci cu noi este Isus.

 Cine își permite teatru ca să joace între frați, Se va judeca cu Domnul nu cu cei înlăcrimați, Noi rămânem lângă Domnul cum ne-nvață pocăința, Căci avem dovadă vie căci în El e biruința!

 Fiți convinși voi, frați de cruce, că avem un har deplin Ca să fim aici cu Domnul dar și-n veșnicii, Amin!

 Sursa – Resurse Crestine

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Question: “What should be the Christian view of romance?”

Answer: Although there are no references to the wordromance in the Bible, there are 281 mentions of love. Since the dictionary definition for romance is “ardent emotional attachment or involvement between people; a love affair,” these two terms can sometimes be used interchangeably. But the true meaning of love, as defined in the Bible, has been corrupted in the common usage of our English language and society. Most often, love is confused with infatuation – that elated, “high” feeling we get when we “fall in love.” This kind of “love” is something that lasts typically a short time and, unless replaced by true love, results in broken relationships.
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The Bible covers two types of love: agape and phileo. Agape love is represented by God’s love for us. It is a non-partial, sacrificial love best demonstrated by the gift in John 3:16. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.” This kind of love is unconditional. The “Love Chapter” in 1 Corinthians deals more explicitly with this. “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails” (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a). This passage is often quoted at weddings and other celebrations of love.
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Agape is a connection through the spirit. A true manifestation of this requires a relationship with Christ. For without Him, agape love isn’t exhibited in its truest form. We, as humans, can’t reach this level alone. We need our Heavenly Father’s Spirit in us, working through us. “The Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility and self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23). Only through that Spirit can we reach this goal.
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The other kind of love, phileo, is considered “brotherly love.” It is usually based upon how others treat us and our feelings in any given situation. It involves direct interaction and sometimes comes with a price tag of expectation, wanting something back in return. It’s a demonstrative form of love offered through the soul. But, it’s also a command from God. “Let us love one another, because love comes from God” (1 John 4:7).
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Love is the attribute of God that means the most to us. If God didn’t love us, whom He created, He would have traded us in for a better model long ago. Despite our many failures, God keeps working with us (Romans 5:8). Time and time again, despite His patience being tested, He demonstrates that love for His people. He only banned Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. He didn’t take their lives. He spared the world because He found one man of upright faith in Noah. He rescued Lot from Sodom before destroying that city. He made Abraham the father of many nations and blessed him with his long-awaited son, despite Abraham’s impatience when he fathered a son through his wife’s servant.
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In the same way God shows His love for us, He expects us to love Him totally and to show love toward each other. “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself” (Luke 10:27). Jesus spoke these words when the Pharisees questioned Him about the greatest commandment of God. Although they tried to trick Him, Jesus didn’t change the law; He fulfilled it. His sayings about love were not new. The emphasis was merely changed.
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The relationships in our lives will either be governed by agape or phileo love. When thinking in terms of romance, we allow the manifestation of that agape love to pour out from our hearts. As a result, we are eager to do everything we can to please the other person and make that person happy. In a love relationship between a man and a woman, the romance is the physical evidence of the love that exists. When that relationship progresses to marriage, the love built between the man and woman only grows deeper as the bond is made stronger through the intimate union of body and soul. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). Biblical love elevates the husband’s affections for his wife to the point of loving his wife “as his own body.” It also instructs wives to submit to their husbands as the head of the household (Eph. 5:25-29). But submission doesn’t mean subservience. On the contrary, when true agape love is manifested in the marriage, the two will act as one, and both will love the other as they love themselves. The tenderness and romance will come out of that love.
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By far, the best book in the Bible on this romantic and agape type of love is the Song of Solomon. An oft-quoted and many times favorite of romantics, this book demonstrates the parallel between the agape love Christ has for His church and the deep, abiding love a husband has for his bride. The lover and beloved exchange dialogue with each other, and the beloved speaks with her friends. Every passage attests to the deep and abiding love between the lover and beloved. The two are so consumed with that love that it fills them and gives them strength to face each new day. They find comfort and solace in each other’s arms and are incomplete without each other. Being together excites them, and when they’re apart, they anticipate their reunion.
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But, above everything else that is demonstrated in God’s Word, it’s important to keep in mind that love/romance is an action. It’s not passive, and it’s not a feeling. It’s a verb. It requires you to do something in order to bring it to pass. It also requires that you put the other person’s wants and desires above your own. Whenever you need a reminder, go back and read 1 Corinthians 13. And remember, you don’t have to do it alone. God’s Spirit will work through you. All you have to do is ask.
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Recommended Resources: The Book of Romance: What Solomon Says About Love, Sex, and Intimacy by Tommy Nelson and Logos Bible Software.
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Gospel Hymns For Daily Strength

LOVE MAKES OUR TOIL WORTHWHILE
“Love one another, as I have loved you.” John 15:12

Open wider the door of your heart to the light;
Let the sunshine of love make its corners all bright;
Let no selfish desires bring the shadow of night,
Only love makes our toil worthwhile.

Let the sunlight and the love-light
Fill your face with their glory,
With a bright, sunny smile;
Bear your trials with patience,
Good cheer sure will win;
Only love makes our toil worthwhile!

If your face is alight with the sunshine of love
Then your soul will be filled with a joy from above;
Everywhere you’ll find gladness, tho’ widely you rove;
Only love makes our toil worthwhile.

Learn to love men about you, whatever you learn,
Finding no one too lowly and no one to spurn;
Love will teach you to help them, their good to discern,
Only love makes our toil worthwhile.10957929_598791626918816_423525164_n
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Words: Eunice Whitfold, in The King’s Message, edited by Edmund Lorenz & Ira B. Wilson (New York: Lorenz Publishing Company, 1910), number 32.

Music: Edmund S. Lorenz

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    10983428_1009171702444251_4896479763855894323_nGospel Hymns For Daily Strength

     -GOD, WHOSE LOVE IS ALWAYS STRONGER
    “Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

    God, whose love is always stronger
    Than our weakness, pride and fear,
    In your world, we pray and wonder
    How to be more faithful here.
    Hate too often grows inside us;
    Fear rules what the nations do.
    So we pray, when wars divide us:
    Give us love, Lord! Make us new!

    Love is patient, kind and caring,
    Never arrogant or rude,
    Never boastful, all things bearing;
    Love rejoices in the truth.
    When we’re caught up in believing
    War will make the terror cease,
    Show us Jesus’ way of living;
    May our strength be in your peace.

    May our faith in you be nourished;
    May your churches hear your call.
    May our lives be filled with courage
    As we speak your love for all.
    Now emboldened by your Spirit
    Who has given us new birth,
    Give us love, that we may share it
    Till your love renews the earth!
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    Words: Carolyn W. Gillette, 2003.

    Music: Beach Spring, from Sacred Harp, by Benjamin F. White, 1844

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