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keith green Keith Green is one of my all time favorite Christian singer/song writers no one since him has impacted the Christian world with such encouraging songs. He’s lyrics challenged Christians in their walk with God like no other musical artist. In so many ways His concerts where like sermons being song.

A great example is his song ‘A Sleep In the Light’ probably my favorite song of his, the lyrics motivated me every time I heard the song. I can not count the number of times that the song came into my head, in opportune times to share the gospel, jump starting me to do so.

This song is so needed in the American church today, one that needs to be played in every church and on every Christian radio station, this message need to come from every pulpit, because the church has never been more a sleep as it is today. Read over the lyrics below, let it take hold of your heart, Hear it here.

My favorite lines are “How can you be so dead When you’ve been so well fed Oh, Jesus rose from the dead And you, you can’t even get out of bed

Light’: by Keith Green

Do you see, do you see
All the people sinking down
Don’t you care, don’t you care
Are you gonna let them drown
How can you be so numb
Not to care if they come
You close your eyes
And pretend the job’s done
"Oh bless me Lord, bless me Lord"
You know it’s all I ever hear
No one aches, no one hurts
No one even sheds one tear
But He cries, He weeps, He bleeds
And He cares for your needs
And you just lay back
And keep soaking it in,
Oh, can’t you see it’s such a sin?
Cause He brings people to you door,
And you turn them away
As you smile and say,
"God bless you, be at peace"
And all heaven just weeps
Cause Jesus came to your door
You’ve left him out on the streets
Open up open up
And give yourself away
You see the need, you hear the cries
So how can you delay
God’s calling and you’re the one
But like Jonah you run
He’s told you to speak
But you keep holding it in,
Oh can’t you see it’s such a sin?
The world is sleeping in the dark
That the church just can’t fight
Cause it’s asleep in the light
How can you be so dead
When you’ve been so well fed
Jesus rose from the grave
And you, you can’t even get out of bed
Oh, Jesus rose from the dead
Come on, get out of your bed
How can you be so numb
Not to care if they come
You close your eyes
And pretend the job’s done
You close your eyes
And pretend the job’s done
Don’t close your eyes
Don’t pretend the jobs done
Come away, come away, come away with Me my love,
Come away, from this mess, come away with Me, my love.

I had a great conversation with a former pastor of a underground house church in China, (read my post ‘Visit The Underground Church in China’) he shared with me the format for his church.

This is what his house church in China looked like:

  • They met every evening
  • Had a meal together most evenings, called a love feast
  • They begin with prayer
  • Someone would share a message, always a word for word study of the bible
  • Then they would pray over each other
  • Each person would make known their needs and everyone one would pray for them
  • Worship with song and praises to God
  • Encourage one another in the faith
  • Each gathering would last 3 to 4 hours

I asked him about how did he get the word out, evangelize his town?

He sated that everyone in his church shared the gospel with everyone they know or meet (despite the threat of imprisonment or death). That in the Chinese church it is considered the greatest joy in life to share Jesus, to have someone come to Christ. That the church there lives to share the gospel and to have fellowship with one another.

He and his wife where arrested and put in prison for sharing Christ, they where released after a international out cry that gained them freedom, and exiled to the US.

I asked him to compare his church in China to the churches in American, said no comparison, he misses the church in China. Said we do not have church here (the US), it’s all programs and entertainment.

I agree.

More to come.


Related post: Visit The Underground Church in China

The key to the only tool you need to plant a church, the Holy Spirit as I explained in yesterday post is found in Act 11:24  For he was a good man and full of the Holy Spirit and faith. And many people were added to the Lord. It says full of the Holy Spirit and faith, and many where added.

Faith is the key to the Holy Spirit, what is the faith spoken of here? It is Faith that Jesus will give you the Spirit as He promised He would. That the Spirit will empower, equip and lead us, will enable us to be an witness to the world. Give us the words to day, the gifting to do the job, that Jesus will build His church as He said He will.

I believe that is why we have so many conferences and books on church planting, because we have to many people who ether do not have the faith to trust and reality on the Holy Spirit or to many who are not filled with and walking in the spirit. And are doing works of the flesh trying to reproduce the work of the Spirit and plant, start church on their own fleshly power. So they need a fleshly plan, way to make it happen.

I propose that the only real "how to church planting" conferences that should be going on, is prayer meetings, on your face worship, seeking God and wait to hear His voice meetings. Not let me tell you about our man conceived plans and ways to make it happen conferences.

When I was in YWAM, everyone had to do a DTS (Discipleship Training School) a 5 month boot camp if you will, that is focused mainly on finding your unique individual gifts and calling in God. To learn to hear God’s voice and follow His will for your life, a time that you inquire of God as to which of the 800 bases in more than 100 countries in the world are you to go to, His will for you, not your own. And which of the over 3500 ministry opportunities are you to do. They do not tell you where, what and how, but rather lead you into the presents of God, and help you learn to listen to for Gods voice, to hear Him and seek His face. They leave the where, what and how up to God, the Holy Spirit to answer. And that’s the way it should be for every follower of Christ, missionaries, pastors and even for “church planters”.

Part 2 in the series

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