Church

spirit of God With a multitude of conference a year, and a long list of books published each year on “church planting” with most claiming to give you what you need to know. All the tools you need to plant a church, the schemes and sure fire methods to plant a successful “church planting”.

But the truth is that the only tool we need has already been made available to us and you do not get it in a conference.

Jesus gave us all we need to know and need to do His work here on earth, all we need to assist Him in building His church, the Holy Spirit. (One must also keep in mind a key truth, Jesus said it is His job not ours to build the church.)

And what is the only tool we need to “plant Churches” we find it in Act 1:8  But you shall receive power, the Holy Spirit coming upon you. And you shall be witnesses to Me both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and to the end of the earth., The Holy Spirit, He is all you need! Note Jesus did not tell them to figure out for themselves how to start a church, come up with their own plan of what church was to be like, methods of how to plant a church, own schemes to make it happen.

He told His followers to Be filled with the Holy Spirit, that the Spirit would empower, equip and lead us, would enable us to be an witness to the world, to rely 100% on the Holy Spirit. There it is, every thing we need to “plant a church” the only tool we need, the Holy Spirit, He will equip you with all you need, will give you the words to say, and lead you to where God is working. Then you do as Jesus said, Go, preach, teach, baptize and make disciples and a church has been planted. Yes it is that simple, but with out faith it is impossible to please God, to step out and do, and believe the Holy Spirit will give you all you need.

They way it has been done by the faithful since Acts 1, He equipped and lead the disciples, the apostle Paul and how it’s done everyday in China, India, and many other place today, proving that it is still true.

That’s the way it is for me, I go to the Lord, depend on the Holy Spirit to lead and direct, teach me and equip me for what ever He has for me to do. I do not seek out what other men are doing, seek to imitate the way and work of others. But rather seek God and the Holy Spirit in all things. His calling and plans for me, I seek to build what the Lord wants, not what man thinks God wants. I have direct access to God, why would I go anywhere else, I can hear God’s voice just as clearly as any mans.

Part 1

3043675198_52ec03c72a In Matthew 7:13-14 Jesus tells us;

“Go in through the narrow gate, for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many there are who go in through it. Because narrow is the gate and constricted is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”

But yet so many pastors and church’s are preaching the gospel of the Wide Road, they are teaching that all one has to do is make an intellectual decision, that is agree with the fact that Jesus is Lord, and you are saved. Then live however you want, believe whatever you want about who Jesus is, who God is. Pick and choose what every scriptures you agree with, and cut out the ones you do not like. And adopt any theology you want about God, Jesus, the Bible, salvation and life.

So many pastors, churches and even study bible today teach that there are no absolute truths when it comes to God, Jesus, salvation and the word. That God is an individual experience, interpretation and understanding as to who He is and what He requires of man.

There is a great difference between what men teach today and what Jesus taught.

This must change.

The bible is not a collection of stories about people and their lives that say "And they lived happily every after". Stories about people who lived rich and happy lives. No where do you find lives that prove the life taught by people like Osteen, that it is every follower of Christ destiny to live a happy and rich life, get every material desire of you heart. Live comfortable rich and happy lives, getting everything you want if you just have faith.

Instead it is a book filled with stories of tragedy, hardship, sacrifice and suffering, even unto violent death for the people of God. People who left all comfort and position to live lives of poverty and suffering for God’s cause, for the spreading of the the Kingdom of God. Pretty much the only people who had a "lived happy every after" was after they died and left this world and entered heaven, that was the only way that was archived for the vast majority.

Just read the Fox’s Book of Martyrs and how the lives of the disciples ended up as well as other church saints, do you read any "And they lived happily every after" about their lives, and if anyone was entitled to such a thing it was them.

In fact in Rom 8:17 it tells us "And if we are children, then we are heirs; heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ; so that if we suffer with Him, we may also be glorified together." Indicating that in order to be glorified with Christ we must suffer as He did. That in order to be heirs of Him we must partake in a life of suffering for Him, suffer as He did.

I think the church needs to reread the bible, take a real good look at the real call of Christ on His people, take a closer look at the lives of God’s people in history.

discipling All followers of Christ are called to make disciples, not simply believers like so many churches do, Jesus addressed that issue when He stated "Even the demons believe–and shudder!." You see believing who Jesus is has never really been the issue, Satan himself believe who Jesus is, in fact he knows for certain who Jesus is. The Issue has always been following, obeying, that is making Him Lord of you life. And that is where we come in, our call, mission given to us in Mat 28:19 "Go therefore and Make disciples of All the nations." Our job is not to make believers out of people, but rather followers of Jesus.

Every follower of Christ if they are living obedient to Christ, obeying all His commandments, as He state if you love Him then you are obeying All of His commands. The you are fulfilling the great commission as it is called Mat 28:18-20 and are making disciples. Every follower of Christ should have Timothy’s in their life. Everyone should without exception who is a follower of Jesus should have people in their life they are discipling, and doing so the way Jesus modeled for us, doing daily life with them, teaching them by how they live and with their words the life lived in Christ. Teaching them about God and Jesus, the word of God, how to know and use their spiritual gifts, and how to proclaim the gospel and make disciples themselves.

As Jesus showed us this is not an over night task, a Sunday school class you take for six weeks and graduate, it is a life time commitment, too Jesus three years full time to prepare His disciples to Go out on their own. Are you better than Jesus, more able than Him to disciple other, I thinks not. You should be giving years to disciple others, do life with them on a daily bases to teach them, disciple them into their new life in Christ. It is not your pastors job, a Sunday school teachers job, a book to be read, but a life to be lived out.

Go and Make disciples.

 

Part 8 in the series

dirty water 4 Dig a Well, Go to Guatemala, El Salvador, Mexico, Honduras, East Africa

Over one billion people lack access to safe drinking water worldwide. Polluted water isn’t just dirty—it’s deadly. Some 1.8 million people die every year of diarrheal diseases like cholera. Tens of millions of others are seriously sickened by a host of water-related ailments—many of which are easily preventable.

More than 1.5m children under five die each year because they lack access to safe water and proper sanitation. Every day water-related diseases claim the lives of 5000 children under the age of five. That’s roughly one every 15 seconds. Households in rural Africa spend an average of 26% of their time fetching water, and it is generally women who are burdened with the task.

If one million Christ followers where to go for 7 day each over the next year they would dig enough wells to end the water crises.

 

Part 7 in the series

girls cheering on

I attended some of my nieces softball games the past two weekend, loved watching those girls play (10 to 12 years olds) , they are so amazing, the sills and abilities they posses at such a young age.

One of the things that caught my attention was that when they make an errors, mess up, strike out, drop a ball their teammates still say good job, you’ll get it next time and high five them, the coaches yell out good try, way to try, sake it off. As well as all of us in the stands, cheered for them just as if they hit a home run even when it was a pop fly out, shout out good hit! Not one of those girls is allowed to feel like they failed, no matter how badly they messed up.

That made me think of the verse Heb 12:1  "Therefore let us also, seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us," And how we have our own cheering section in heaven, but we should have one here to. When we mess up, make mistake, the body of Christ should be like my nieces teammates there to high five us, say good try, you’ll get it next time when we strikeout. But I do not see that happening very much at all in the church today, and that saddens me.

We the church, the body of Christ must, need to learn from girls softball, learn to be a team that supports each other no matter what, how bad we mess up. I saw how much it effected those girls, their spirits, them emotionally, made them what to do better next time. It keep them in the game with high spirits no matter the score, because they new they were winners no matter what the scoreboard said, glad to be on the team and in the game with them, and so should every member of the body of Christ.

Baptize someone, nearest lake, stream or pool.

The second command of the great commission to all followers of Christ is to baptize new followers of Christ, most certainly referring to someone whom the Lord revealed Christ to during your sharing the gospel with them. This is the duty of every follower of Christ to do, if you have not done so ether you have not been proclaiming the gospel as Jesus command you to and have no need to, or you have been passing the duty on to someone else, like maybe your pastor. But it is your duty, the is one of the greatest joys and experience in your walk with God you can have is to to baptize someone into the Kingdom of God, why would you not want to do this! Why would you not want to be part of this glorious event, the induction of someone into the new life in Christ?

For every follower of Christ this should be a common occurrence in your life. It is according to Jesus something that is to be a action performed by all of His followers. If you are not doing part 5, sharing Christ, the gospel with others, then get busy doing what Christ called you to do, thus creating the need to baptize others in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” Mat 28:19

Like I said in post 5, Chose this day to live, be like Philip in Act 8: 26-40. We read in Act 8:38 “And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.” Only you can chose to live like that, be like him. Go and baptize in the name of Jesus.

Part 6 in the series

Preach the Gospel, To All the World.

Jesus told His followers in Mark 16:15 “And He said to them, Go into all the world, proclaim the gospel to all the creation.” despite Satan’s influence on people in the church who introduced the doctrine in the 90’s of Not sharing the gospel with others. That people by simply by being around you through osmoses will become followers of Christ. Even thou all references to witness or witnessing in the book of Acts are public, verbal proclamation of the gospel outright. Jesus never taught or instructed His disciples to anything other than out right proclaim the gospel. There is never the concept in Scripture that witness can be private or simply lived out, but rather something to be proclaimed, shouted from the house tops.

Romans 10:14 tells us “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without preaching?” It is the job of every follower of Christ, to proclaim the gospel of Jesus to all of the world. With words, with the actual gospel of Jesus. Do not listen to others, people who tell you not to share Christ, not to proclaim the gospel, just live a “good” life and others will get saved with out a word spoken. (Note, in order for your life to be an actual witness as they say, to reveal Jesus and the gospel, you must be living a life of obedience to Christ, and imitating His life. Which means you must be verbal sharing, proclaiming the Gospel, just as Jesus did and said to do. It’s a catch 22.)

In Luke 15:10 Jesus says ““…I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” how can anyone who is a follower of Christ not want to be part of that. Be part of an act that brings so much joy to all of heaven. This is what the Gospel is all about, why Jesus came and walked among us, what He sent His followers to do, Preach the gospel, so Go and proclaim the gospel to the world!

Chose this day to live, be like Philip in Act 8: 26-40. We read in Act 8:35 “Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this Scripture he told him the good news about Jesus.” Chose this day to live like him, to Go out into the world with that intent, to share on purpose. Only you can chose to live like that, be like him.

Part 5

Feed the Hungry, Go to Cambodia.

Or Go to any of the other 50 nations that the worlds poorest people live in.

These are the face of hunger, look at these faces , there are 153 million children who go to bed hungry, 16,000 children will die from hunger today, how can you say you do not have the time to save them.

Look at how this child finds dinner, if at all. Imaging your child having to do this. Well too many parents watch their children do this to eat.

There are 162 million people who live in ‘ultra poverty’ on less than 50 cents a day, One billion people live on less than $1 a day. Every day, one child every five second dies from hunger-related causes..

Jesus said this is Him, this is His face you are looking at, hungry, naked, thirsty.

Until you have seen this, looked into their hungry eyes, seen them live in cardboard box, you can not understand this. Until you hold a starving child in you arms you do not know how real this tragedy is.

Go spend 3 or 4 weeks here , or the rest of you life here, Go save the lives of children, Go do what Jesus told His church, followers to do in Matt 25. This experience will change you, the way you understand the gospel, change how you see the world. Change what you think is important in life, how you live, spend money, even eat and dress. It is by seeing and touching this reality, seeing the magnitude of it that makes it real to you, this is what will change what you do with your money, how much you give. You can not understand this suffering tell you touch it, see into the eyes of a hungry child, this is why all Christians must go, and do.

There are more than 300 verse in the bible in which God talks about the poor, that they are nearest to His heart and it’s the responsibility of His people to take care of them. Do you really believe the gospel is that Jesus died so you can be rich, comfortable and fat, while children starve to death? Jesus is calling out to His people to come to Him. Who will answer His call, will You? Go! You will never be the same again.

Part 4

streets KidsRescue Streets Kids in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

Figures now reveal that 7 million abandon children live on the streets of Brazilian cities.

The girls are snatched up quickly for sex trafficking or simply turn to prostitution to survive.

And like I said of India, this also is where Jesus would be found if He where on earth today, in fact according to Matt 25, this is where He is right now, waiting for His people to come visit Him, rescue Him, take Him in.

Go spend 3 or 4 weeks here, rescue a child, save them, do what Jesus came to do, Go do what Jesus commission His church, followers to do. This experience will change you, change how you see the world. until you have seen this kind of tragedy you can not understand what so many children have to live like daily.

The first time I saw this atrocity, was face to face with young children living on the streets, doing any thing to eat, my heart was forever changed. I was in the mist of the human litter on the streets along with broken bottles, and discarded newspapers, young children thrown away like trash.

Forty four times God speaks of His people responsibility to take care of the fatherless, and speaks of the penalty for those who do nothing to help them.

So take the time go to Brazil rescue some children, be a father to the fatherless, truly be a follower of Christ, go where He would go, be like Him be found about your fathers business. Can you truly tell me this is not what Jesus wants you to do. Save the life of some children give them a future, show them the gospel is real. Prove your faith is real.

Part 3 in my series