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Archive for March, 2012

“And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers unto the LORD, and that should praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army, and to say, Praise the LORD; for his mercy endureth for ever.
And when they began to sing and to praise, the LORD set ambushments against the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, which were come against Judah; and they were smitten.
For the children of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of mount Seir, utterly to slay and destroy them: and when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, every one helped to destroy another.
And when Judah came toward the watch tower in the wilderness, they looked unto the multitude, and, behold, they were dead bodies fallen to the earth, and none escaped.” ~ 2 Chronicles 20:21-24

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Why is worship music important?  Why do we sing songs of praise to God at the beginning of church services every week?

The above passage in 2 Chronicles 20:21-24 gives us a hint as to why praising and worshiping God in song is so important.  In this account, three different enemy armies were lined up to come against the armies of Judah and Jerusalem; and by human standards, it did not look good.  It looked as though the Israelites were outnumbered and would be defeated.

Singers were placed at the front of the army to sing praises to God as they were about to go out into battle.  When they began to sing and to praise, the enemy armies began fighting against one another and eventually killed each other.  Israel didn’t have to lift one finger!  All they did was sing!

There’s another story in the Bible about David when he was a servant of King Saul.  He was appointed to play the harp for Saul during the times when an evil spirit came upon him and tormented him.  Whenever David played the harp, the evil spirit left Saul and he felt much better.  (I Samuel 16:23)

There’s yet another Bible story that I’ve mentioned in previous posts.  (See “Related Posts” below.)  It’s the story about Paul and Silas singing praises to God while they were in prison.  As they were singing, a strong earthquake occurred that shook the prison doors open and caused all the prisoners’ chains to come loose.  (Acts 16:25-26Amazing!

I sing with the worship team at my church and I often notice that people in the audience are either barely singing or not singing at all.  Oh how I wish they could only fathom the spiritual importance of singing songs of praise and worship to Almighty God!  There’s a spiritual battle going on all around us and this activity really does cause spiritual breakthroughs in the heavenlies – good defeating evil.  Our spiritual adversaries hate music that glorifies God.  They actually flee from it!

I wrote about the following personal experience in one of my earlier posts on this blog, but it bears mentioning again.  There was a time in my life when I was so distraught over a certain situation that I was going through.  I was extremely fearful.  So fearful that I was crying and could actually feel fear gripping my heart.  That’s the only way I can describe it.

At that time, I rarely listened to Christian music apart from church.  Even while driving in the car, when I tuned into a Christian radio station, I was more interested in listening to a good sermon or talk show.  Strange for a singer, I know – but that’s how I was back then.  But that’s definitely changed.

During this particular time of great fear and anxiety, I was sitting on my bed, crying out to God, and reading from the book of Psalms.  (I always find great solace in this particular book of the Bible.)  Then for no apparent reason known to me, I reached over to my clock radio and turned it on.  I can’t remember if I searched out a Christian music station or if it was already tuned in to one, but the song “Open the Eyes of My Heart” came on.  I wasn’t even really paying attention to it.  I was just so focused on my gut-wrenching fear, my crying out to God, and my reading of scripture that the music was sort of in the background.

All of a sudden – without any warning whatsoever – the anxiety and fear that was gripping my heart just started to dissipate.  It felt like a giant hand was gradually loosening its tight grip on my heart until I finally felt “light-hearted.”  I felt like a heavy load had been lifted off of my chest and I was actually able to breathe easier.  That’s when I “heard” the above-mentioned song playing on the radio.  I then realized that the spiritual enemy that had been oppressing me must have fled because he couldn’t stand hearing this music that was praising and worshiping God – or God chased it away – or both.

Oh my goodness!  What an “Aha” moment that was!  Praising and worshiping God in song really is spiritual warfare!  Just as God caused three of Israel’s enemies to start fighting and killing each other when the singers started to praise God’s holiness; just as the evil spirit that was tormenting Saul went away when David started playing beautiful praise music on his harp; and just as Paul’s and Silas’ chains and prison doors were opened in an unexpected way when they started singing praises to God – we are delivered from our spiritual enemy, as well, when we sing praises to our Heavenly Father!  It may be a large breakthrough or a hardly noticeable one, but rest assured – something is definitely happening behind the scenes in the spiritual realm.

I hope this has helped the readers to understand how vitally important it is for ALL believers to sing songs of praise and worship to God.  Even if you don’t think you have a good singing voice, I believe God is pleased with your efforts and obedience to Him because it really is commanded for us to sing songs of praise to Him. (Psalm 98:4; Psalm 135:3; Psalm 149:1)

I would like to encourage all who are not already doing so to praise the Lord God in song every chance you get – not only during your corporate worship time, but also in your private time with God.  The devil hates it… God loves it… and you will be greatly blessed by doing it.  Amen.

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A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle.

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Have you ever been to a candlelight ceremony?  You know, the kind where one person lights their candle and then, in turn, uses theirs to light the candle of the person next to them, and that person does the same for the person next to them…and so on…until the whole room is filled with tiny, incandescent flames of light that brighten the whole room.

In theory, just one candle could light a million other candles without losing its flame.  Of course, the wick would burn out and the wax would melt long before that – but not because of lighting the other candles. 

It’s the same with us.  We could spend a lifetime helping others – giving of our time…our talent…our money, sharing knowledge, giving an encouraging word, or even just a smile – and we would not lose anything.  On the contrary, we would gain so much joy and so many blessings from knowing that we’ve done something to better the lives of others.  The Bible tells us that “it is more blessed to give than to receive.”  (Acts 20:35)  How true this is!

Remember these words of Jesus in Matthew 5:14-16: 

You are the light of the world.  A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.  Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.  Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”

This is telling us to not keep our lights hidden…but to shine them before others in doing good wherever possible.  Can you imagine what the world would look like if everyone did this?

Just something to think about…

 

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The Nephilim were on the earth in those days–and also afterward–when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown. ~ Genesis 6:4

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This is a rather strange topic for most.  Especially those in Western society who don’t believe in anything that may be regarded as supernatural – whose god is science and whose view of reality totally prevents them from accepting anything outside of the five physical senses (i.e., sight, hearing, taste, smell, and touch).  Even those who consider themselves Christians may have a hard time believing that supernatural occurrences are real.

As the title suggests, this article is about UFOs, aliens, and the Nephilim.  As most reading this probably know, the acronym “UFO” stands for “unidentified flying object”; the term “alien” is used in this context to describe a so-called being from another planet; and the Nephilim were a giant breed of people who were around during and after the time of the Flood of Noah. (Genesis 6:4)

Most of us recognize the correlation between UFOs and aliens, but why are the Nephilim included in this discussion?  It’s because Jesus told us that during the time just before His return that things would be as they were during the days of Noah.  (Luke 17:26)  As we will see as this article progresses, there were a lot of very strange and out of the ordinary things going on at that time.  Namely, whatever circumstances caused the Nephilim to come on the scene.  Let’s take a look at that, starting in Genesis 6:1-2:

Now it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them, that the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose.

This passage tells us that as humans increased on the earth and daughters were born to them, that the “sons of God” saw that these women were beautiful and took them as their wives.  The term “sons of God” is not one we see everyday.  What exactly is meant by this?

Some Christian scholars teach that the sons of God were from the line of Seth (one of Adam’s sons) and the daughters of men were from the line of Cain (the son who murdered his brother Abel).  They reason that Seth’s offspring were “godly” and that Cain’s offspring were “ungodly.”  But there are some things that don’t quite add up when considering this view:

  1. Where does it specifically say that the sons of God were from the line of Seth?  It doesn’t.
  2. Are they saying that Seth is God?  It sure sounds like it.
  3. If Seth’s line was so godly, why were only eight people saved during the Flood?  (Noah and his immediate family.)
  4. And the biggie:  Since Seth and Cain were both humans, WHY ON EARTH would the union of their sons and daughters produce these strange giant creatures (Nephilim) which are mentioned just a couple of verses later?   If you really think about it, it makes absolutely no sense at all!

According to Dr. Chuck Missler of Koinonia House (www.khouse.org), the “sons of Seth and daughters of Cain” view started in the 5th century AD.  Prior to that, another view called the “fallen angel view” was the traditional one held by the Jewish rabbis and the early church. This view states that the sons of God in Genesis 6:4 are fallen angels who lusted after human women, married, and had children with them.  (Of note, every other occurrence of the term “sons of God” in the Old Testament refers to angels.  [See Job 1:6, Job 2:1, and  Job 38:7]  Why would it all of a sudden mean something different in this passage of scripture?)  Regarding these hybrid children, they were extraordinarily large in stature and were the famous heroes of old whom stories have been passed down about throughout the ages.

It is the opinion of some that all the old legends (i.e., Greek and Roman mythology) about the “gods” or “star people” coming down to earth, cohabiting with women, and producing children have their bases in the shenanigans of Genesis 6:1-4.  There are actually many ancient cultures that have recorded these stories.  Some include ancient Sumer, Assyria, Egypt, Incas, Mayan, Persia, Greece, India, and also the American Indians, just to name a few.

Think about it.  How could so many different, seemingly unconnected cultures on earth have such similar stories about these strange events if there wasn’t some truth to them?  It’s the same with the Garden of Eden and the Flood of Noah.  Many places around the globe have similar stories of these events, as well.  It’s only logical that they were passed down from the mouths of the children of Noah – Shem, Ham and Japheth – to their offspring down through the ages, to our present day.

Now back to the question of what UFOs and aliens have to do with the Nephilim.  As we’ve seen so far, the Nephilim were the products of fallen angels who procreated with human women.  Nowadays, there’s a great surge in UFO sightings and stories of human abductions by these alien creatures who claim to be from another planet.  Of interest, some of these abductions have actually been halted by invoking the name of Jesus Christ.  (Read about it here.)  As most Christians know, this works for stopping demonic spirits, as well.  Could there be a connection between the two?  Could these so-called “aliens” actually be fallen angels who are deceiving humans into thinking that they’re from another planet?

Many people who have been abducted by these beings report having been the objects of some sort of sexual or reproductive experiments.  Some women even claim to have felt something moving and growing inside of them after the abduction, only to be abducted again some time later and having whatever it was removed.  If true, could there be a resurgence of hybrid creatures that are the products of human women and fallen angels – just as in the days of Noah?

My all-time favorite Bible scholar and teacher, Dr. Chuck Missler, whom I referenced above, has a really interesting series on this subject matter.  He does an excellent job of laying down the case that these alien creatures are not from other planets but are really fallen angels masquerading as these beings. The series is entitled “Return of the Nephilim” and I’ve included it below in its entirety.  I’ve only touched the tip of the iceberg regarding this topic, but Dr. Missler delves much deeper below the surface than I ever could in this short article.

And please feel free to comment.  I’d love to hear your feedback on this most interesting topic!  Do you think there’s something to this – or is it just a bunch of mumbo jumbo?  See what you think after watching the videos.  Enjoy!

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One more thing…

I found this really cool photograph on the web that perfectly sums it all up:

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Amen! 🙂

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This is a very moving live performance by Carrie Underwood singing this classic Christian hymn.  It’ll give you chills.  Enjoy!

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A talebearer revealeth secrets:  but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter. ~ Proverbs 11:13

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Have you ever known someone who habitually talks about other people in a negative way – revealing secrets, personal business, or character flaws?  The Bible calls these people talebearers.  We know them nowadays as gossips. 

People who constantly gossip about others have something in them that drives their need to “air other people’s dirty laundry” or make others look bad in some way.  They don’t feel good about themselves and they think that by pointing out the flaws of others, this makes them look better in the eyes of their listeners.  However, it ends up having the opposite effect.  Once people know that someone is a gossip, it makes them want to avoid that person because they figure, “If they’re gossiping about all these other people, then they’re probably gossiping about me, too.”

The Norman Rockwell painting above is very humorous, but there’s nothing funny about the underlying truth depicted in it.  Gossip hurts!  Not only does it hurt the person who’s being talked about, but it also hurts the one who’s doing the gossiping.  It hurts them spiritually because it hinders their relationship with God.  And it hurts them in the real world because other people can’t trust them.

I think we’re all guilty of this activity from time to time, but when we realize that we’re doing it, we need to just stop – mid-sentence if necessary – and say, “You know, I really shouldn’t be saying these things.  This is not right.”  Then, we need to repent before God and ask His forgiveness.  We wouldn’t want this done to us, so we shouldn’t do it to others.  (Matthew 7:12)

Just something to think about…


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Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.~ James 1:12

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If you’re a Star Trek fan, you’re familiar with the Borg mantra, “Resistance is futile!”  Well, that may be the case for imaginary worlds in other galaxies, but that is definitely not the case in the life of a Christian.  It may be hard to resist temptation, but we have the power to do so by the name and shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.  When faced with an obvious (or not so obvious) temptation, how can we be victorious in overcoming whatever it is that seeks to ensnare us?

First of all, let it be known that God does not tempt us.  When you tempt someone, you try to entice them to do evil.  God may “allow” temptations in our lives, but they do not come from Him.  (Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. ~ James 1:13)

So, where do temptations come from?

Well, the very first example we have in human history of people being tempted is that of Adam and Eve.  (Genesis 3)  And the one who did the tempting was none other than Satan the devil – a fallen angel who tried to overthrow God many ages ago.  After this unsuccessful attempt, he was thrown down to earth and now roams around seeking to lure humans into disobeying God, which is called sin.  (I Peter 5:8)

Another example of Satan’s temptation is that of him coming to Jesus Christ in the wilderness while He (Jesus) was fasting for 40 days.  (Matthew 4:1-11; Luke 4:1-13)    Jesus was hungry and very weak, and the devil saw this as his opportunity to get Him to sin.  There are three recorded attempts of Satan trying to get Jesus to go against God’s plan for His life. Satan even tried to twist God’s words (just as he did with Eve in the Garden) to try and trick Jesus into doing what he wanted Him to do.  This was not very smart on the devil’s part because Jesus knows scripture inside and out, and He merely countered Satan’s attempts by quoting it right back to him.  Three times, Jesus prefaced His rebuttals with the words, “It is written.”

  • “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'” (Matthew 4:4);
  • “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the LORD your God.'” (Matthew 4:7); and
  • “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.'” (Matthew 4:10)

This is our example of how we can also resist Satan by using the word of God against him – sort of like a weapon.  Actually, the Bible says that the word of God is a double-edged sword.  So, whenever the devil tries to entice us to do something we know is not right, we can cut his argument down by saying, “It is written,” and then quoting a passage of scripture pertaining to whatever the temptation is.

For example, let’s say you’re innocently surfing the internet and something pops up on your screen that you know you should not look at – like pornography.   So you tell yourself, “This is wrong.  I am NOT going to click on that link.” But the temptation gets stronger and stronger.  Then you hear in your mind, “It’s not really wrong because it’s just a person on a screen.  It won’t hurt anybody.  No one will know.”  (By the way, this is the voice of the enemy putting these thoughts in your mind.)

At this point, there’s one of two things you can do.  You can:

1)   Give in to the temptation and then feel terrible about yourself afterwards.  (Satan really knows how to lay a guilt trip on us after he’s succeeded in making us do wrong.  This can be a great motivator for us not to give in, because we know how bad the feelings of guilt will be afterwards.)  Or,

2)   Counter the temptation by saying,  “Satan, it is written that if a man even looks at a woman to lust after her, then he’s already committed adultery with her in his heart. (Matthew 5:28 So, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, leave me alone!” (See NOTE below.)  You may have to do this a few times before the temptation leaves.  However, it will more than likely return again.  Even Jesus was not exempt from Satan coming back later to try and tempt Him again.  (Luke 4:13)

(NOTE:  This only works if you know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.  We only have authority over Satan and his demons if we’re covered by the blood of Jesus.  There’s actually a story in the Bible about seven brothers who were not Christians, who tried to use the name of Jesus to exorcise demons from people, and they were actually attacked by a man housing one of these things – very badly, I might add.   You can read about it here.)

Remember, the more we give in to a particular temptation, the deeper its tentacles dig into our very souls… until it becomes an addiction.  Some addictions can have you hooked after the very first time you commit the sin – such as with certain drugs.  Others take a lot longer.  But all will eventually cause harm to you and others in your life if you continue doing them.

Proverbs 6:27-28 asks these very thought-provoking questions of the reader:  “Can a man scoop fire into his lap without his clothes being burned? Can a man walk on hot coals without his feet being scorched?”  The answer to both of these questions is, or course, “No.”  So basically, you’re playing with fire if you continue to give in to the same temptation over and over again.  You will eventually get burned.

Hopefully, this helps us all to realize, unlike the characters in Star Trek, that resistance to temptation is not futile!  We have a very powerful weapon at our disposal that we can use to counter it.  That weapon is the word of God and our quoting it against Satan in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Amen!


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     There can be no peace on earth until the Messiah returns.  Man is incapable of attaining peace in and of himself.

     You can issue as many resolutions and sanctions as you want. There will be no peace until the Messiah returns. ~ You can sing “We are the World” and “Kumbaya” all  you want.  There will be no peace until the Messiah returns. ~ You can empty your mind, chant, and meditate on the light of candles all you want.  Still… there will be no peace until the Messiah returns. ~ Why do you think He’s called “The Prince of Peace?”  (See Isaiah 9:6)

     The following is just one of the passages which describe what the earth will be like when the Messiah sets up His Kingdom.  Read it and be encouraged.

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    And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:

    And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;

    And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:

    But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth: with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.

    And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.

    The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.

    And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

    And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den.

    They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.

    And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.

    And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.

    And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.

    The envy also of Ephraim shall depart, and the adversaries of Judah shall be cut off: Ephraim shall not envy Judah, and Judah shall not vex Ephraim.

    But they shall fly upon the shoulders of the Philistines toward the west; they shall spoil them of the east together: they shall lay their hand upon Edom and Moab; and the children of Ammon shall obey them.

    And the LORD shall utterly destroy the tongue of the Egyptian sea; and with his mighty wind shall he shake his hand over the river, and shall smite it in the seven streams, and make men go over dryshod.

    And there shall be an highway for the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria; like as it was to Israel in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt.

    And in that day thou shalt say, O LORD, I will praise thee: though thou wast angry with me, thine anger is turned away, and thou comfortedst me.

    Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.

    Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.

    And in that day shall ye say, Praise the LORD, call upon his name, declare his doings among the people, make mention that his name is exalted.

    Sing unto the LORD; for he hath done excellent things: this is known in all the earth.

    Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion: for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee.

                                                                           ~ Isaiah 11 & 12

 

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