Baptism at Singles Retreat - 147 Baptized!!!

*******************Baptism at Singles Retreat 147 Baptized!!! ***********************

* Sharing times in the Word and looking for growth. Let's Commune Together!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Know and Trust

Joseph did not have all the facts, yet trusted God and he became a part of the miracle of Christmas. Judas had all the facts, and refused to believe, and he became a part of the crucifixion! The issue is never anything else but YOU! That is why a careful check of our emotions is always important. Your faith does not need to be felt, it needs to be determined. Joseph could have felt; this is not my child, or confused, but he determined to trust God. Paul is an example of how this works: 2 Tim. 1:12…Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day. Too many today think that the words “faith” and “feel” go together. That’s an accident waiting to happen! All it takes is a toothache, or your girlfriend to break up with you and you don’t “feel” like believing anything. You just want the pain to stop. “Faith” and “know” are the proper partners! He never changes, so what you feel does not matter.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Light Divides!

Light Divides! Christmas is always viewed as a time of peace. That is understandable based on this is the gift God gave to bring man back into relationship with Him. John 12:46 I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness. Christmas enlightens: 1.  Every person needs the Savior.  2. Every person is worth saving, they are worth reaching. 3.  Salvation is more important than any other item for them in the universe! Yet, there is another side of Christmas – what happens if you want to remain in Darkness? Luke 12:51 Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. Light Divides: from Light and Darkness, from the World and Himself. There is no neutral ground. Now that the Light has come each one of us must take a stand on one side or the other. If you choose a relationship with Him, that relationship continues to grow and that will cause much change and division: From ways of the world and people. Please remember this division is not all painful; yes it will divide us from what we want in the flesh, but also from loneliness, from a life that is wasted, from hate, from drunkenness, from drugs, aids, all kinds of evil and from eternity separated from God.

God’s Light leads your life into a direction that has eternal consequences and real impact here and now.  Consider these men

In 1923 a group of the world’s most successful financiers met,  collectively, these tycoons controlled more wealth than there was in the United States Treasury! 27 years later this was their legacy:

CHARLES SCHWAB—the president of the largest independent steel company—lived on borrowed money the last five years of his life, and died penniless.
ARTHUR CUTTEN—the greatest wheat speculator—died abroad insolvent.
RICHARD WHITNEY—the president of the New York Stock Exchange—was released some time ago from Sing Sing.
ALBERT FALL—the member of the President’s Cabinet—was pardoned from prison so he could die at home.
JESSE LIVERMORE—the greatest bear in Wall Street—committed suicide.
LEON FRASER—the president of the Bank of International Settlement—committed suicide.
IVAR KRUEGER—the head of the world’s greatest monopoly—committed suicide.

In the 1800s George Muller, a man that when he died had 160 pounds to his name, never took a salary as he started orphanages that impacted over 8000 children who were educated and found jobs. During this time he had 1,453,153 pounds pass through his hands for God’s use. Muller’s orphanages are still going.

Anyone can make money – the Light shows you how to live life!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Receiving is part of Communication

Christmas is communication, but for communication to be beneficial it must be believed. Matthew 1:18-25…Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit…When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife…And he gave him the name Jesus. Believe: To remain steadfast; to be persuaded; to adhere to, rely on. Joseph’s response was based on Who he knew, not what he knew. Joseph could not comprehend how this could happen, but he trusted the One that promised it would. Abraham shows us the same secret to life: Heb 11:8 & Rom 4:19-21…being fully persuaded that God had power to do what He had promised. Stop living life based on “Me”! Live life based on "HE"!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas is the perfect communication

Christmas is the perfect communication - It is not:  a system of beliefs; a warm and fuzzy feeling; many colored lights; hot chocolate. It is not even family time or a time for a cease-fire! These other things may be good, personally I love Nat King Cole roasting chestnuts, although living in Manila I don’t need an open fire, the sun can do it :) Christmas is about God communicating to us, God in a way that just boggles my mind communicated His message to mankind in a perfect way. Not in mere words, nor in miraculous signs, but in a person. Hebrews 1:1-2 In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. “God so loved” John 3:16, He left no doubt! God’s idea of love is giving what we most needed…He did that even though the cost to Him was the greatest it could be. What do those you love need? 

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

God will use anyone, but that does not mean there are no qualifications.

1 Timothy 3:1-7 It is a trustworthy statement: if any man aspires to the office of overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do. 2 An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money. 4 He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity 5 (but if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?), 6 and not a new convert, so that he will not become conceited and fall into the condemnation incurred by the devil. 7 And he must have a good reputation with those outside the church, so that he will not fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.

Application: The husband of one wife, this is a term that has spurred many discussions over the centuries. I will not attempt to claim that I have the full understanding of its meaning, and again Lord, as I approach your Word Lord help us to be sure that first and foremost we endeavor to be a people of integrity, so that we will not mislead or misrepresent Your truth. Gods word tells us So it's important to look at what possible meanings this could have, yielding to this truth which is what really matters most - is our conviction based on Your Word and a clear conscience? We do not need to run around and make sure that every elder in the body of Christ agrees with our conviction on this issue. We need to have a standard for our own position as an elder and for the elders who serve and lead in our local Body. In the original this term actually states: a one woman man. Below are some thoughts of interpretation.


{a} Marriage to the Church (celibacy)- there are some who hold this position, but there is clearly no command for celibacy for elders in the Scriptures. If a man desires to live single that is a conviction he holds to God alone, and I support that, but it cannot be demanded for all men. 1 Cor 6:12, 7:1-3,9; 7:20,26; Matt. 19:10-12


 {b} Polygamy - this issue is in light of the culture at the time, sadly though, even today, men were taking more than one wife at a time. Though there is some interpretation that Paul meant an elder should only have one wife at a time, which means he can be married to 7 different women as long as he was only married to one of them at a time, never together.  However, this would be inconsistent with all that Jesus and Paul taught about marriage. Christianity came forth from Judaism, both embrace the teaching of the Old and New Testament which would give one man for one woman in marriage or devoted solely to his one wife 1Tim 3:12


{c} No remarriage - some even hold a strict one-woman man means even no remarriage. However, Scripture would make it clear that if the remarriage were based on the fact that the first spouse died this is not an issue. The man has a right to remarry after his wife as died. Rom 7:1-3 1 Cor. 7:39

{d} No singles - some also exclude singles from eldership because if you're single you are a  NO-woman man. Of course this would, again, not make sense in light of who God was using to write this epistle. Paul was single and even wished others would remain as he is, yet made it clear, it is a gift from God, to those that will be used in the Kingdom, God has planned. Paul shares this with the Corinthian church.

1 Corinthians 7:7-8  I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that. 8 Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am.

1 Corinthians 7:32-34  I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord's affairs-- how he can please the Lord. 33  But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world-- how he can please his wife-- 34  and his interests are divided. An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord's affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world-- how she can please her husband.

What does it mean to be a one-woman man? The explanations we've looked at so far are lacking and fall short of what the context of this passage demands. It is important to take the time to evaluate and understand the requirements that God is placing on those that desire a position as Overseer. It also causes us to pause and rethink our understanding of God's desire for marriage. Remember, all of this is given to us by God, emphasizing the importance for high standards for those who want to be the leaders of His church and those serving as leaders, in spite of how popular or gifted they may be?

Meditation Questions: When you face a scripture that teaches something you may not like – how do you deal with it? Do you believe that even though forgiveness is always offered, are there things in our life that can cost us opportunities? Why did not God state everything just black and white? When we deal with scriptures that leave questions, what should we do? What should we not do? What does it mean to you to agree to disagree?