Government: A Man-Made Institution Destined for Failure


 The nation of Israel was born out of the seed of Abraham to which became its twelve tribes under a patriarchal system with Jacob as their leader. By the time Israel was welcomed by Pharaoh in the land of Goshen, Israel became a part of a family of seventy (Genesis 46:27 / 47:1-6). By the time Moses came into the picture; about four hundred years later; the Bible tells us:

“Then a new king began to rule Egypt, who did not know who Joseph was.

This king said to his people, “Look! The people of Israel are too many and too strong for us to handle!

If we don’t make plans against them, the number of their people will grow even more. Then if there is a war, they might join our enemies and fight us and escape from the country!”

(Exodus 1:8-10)

            Moses represented, among many things, the beginning of the era of the Judges. Israel had grown too large to properly operate under the Patriarchal System; but still, God remained their King. However, after about 450 years of judges, the idea of a Monarchal system was rapidly approaching.

             Samuel represented Israel’s last judge. His two sons were corrupted and they did not have the character, the anointing or the wisdom to properly carry on the work of their dad, whose record as a prophet and judge was without reproach.  As Samuel grew old there was also a growing desire in God’s people to be like everybody else. (1 Samuel 8:1-22)

            It is clear as we look at these verses in 1Samuel 8:1-22 that the idea of this new way of Government was not God’s idea; it was not approved by God. Through the Prophet Samuel the Bible clearly states the consequences of having a Government centered on a man and not on God. In 1 Samuel 8:7 God’s specifically says:

“…and the Lord told Samuel, “Listen to whatever the people say to you. They have not rejected you. They have rejected me from being their king.”

            God actually took the pleas from the people for a king as a direct rejection of Him.  The following verses give us the direct consequences of having a Man-Centered Government:

“Samuel said, “If you have a king ruling over you, this is what he will do: He will take your sons and make them serve with his chariots and his horses, and they will run in front of the king’s chariot.

The king will make some of your sons, commanders over thousands or over fifties. He will make some of your other sons plow his ground and reap his harvest. He will take others to make weapons of war and equipment for his chariots.

He will take your daughters to make perfume and cook and bake for him.

He will take your best fields, vineyards, and olive groves and give them to his servants.

He will take one-tenth of your grain and grapes and give it to his officers and servants.

He will take your male and female servants, your best cattle, and your donkeys and use them all for his own work.

He will take one-tenth of your flocks, and you yourselves will become his slaves.

When that time comes, you will cry out because of the king you chose. But the Lord will not answer you then.”

But the people would not listen to Samuel. They said, “No! We want a king to rule over us.

Then we will be the same as all the other nations. Our king will judge for us and go with us and fight our battles.”

After Samuel heard all that the people said, he repeated their words to the Lord.

The Lord answered, “You must listen to them. Give them a king.” Then Samuel told the people of Israel, “Go back to your towns.” (1 Samuel 8:11-22)

           You be the judge of these words! Every government in the history of humanity has failed; every powerful nation in the history of mankind was eventually destroyed by its own pride and arrogance. They lasted for a while, some better than others, but only God’s Kingdom will be established forever.

            I am not asking for Christians to refuse to participate in the political process, what I am encouraging our Christian brothers and sisters to do is to look at government for what it is; a man-made institution destined for failure. No offense to our Founding Fathers; but history do not have the authority to take away the Truth of God’s Word. If your hope is in the Democratic Party, our current President, the Tea Party Movement or the return of the Republican Party to power, you are setting yourself up for another great disappointment. God is our King and His Kingdom (Government) is the only one that will be establish forever. (2 Samuel 7:12-13)

 

Entertainers or Life-Changing Vessels


“A Word for Christian Singers and Musicians”

            The best entertainers in the world are not in the church; sorry guys! Those who are known as the top entertainers are experts in what they do. The job of an entertainer is to engage people or audiences by providing amusing or interesting material.  How can your emotions not be moved as you watch Aretha Franklin hitting those powerful notes? Do you remember Carlos Santana at his best? Do you remember the great Blues and Jazz singers? What about James Brown and his electrifying performances? What about Elvis at his prime? Come on, don’t try to deny it; some of you still listen to that music when the church folk are not watching!       

            However, the reality is that as much as we may like and respect these performers, not one of them had or has the power to change our lives; they are able to give us nothing more than emotional experience. God, on the other hand, is in the business of rescuing lost souls; God is in the business of changing us day by day. That can’t be done with simple performances by God’s people; this life changing experience can only be achieved by allowing the Holy Spirit to consume us with His fire and presence as we minister under His anointing.

            If you want to be a better performer, you are required to engage in countless hours of rehearsal. If you had the opportunity to watch the movie, “This is it,” that gave us the images of Michael Jackson’s preparation for His last series of concerts. You get a good idea of the dedication and attention to detail that these great performers go through. They do what it takes to present the best product possible. I am all about Christian musicians also presenting the best product possible. I believe that the best music ought to come out of the Body of Christ. However, our responsibility goes beyond “A Saving the Trees” cause. For us, we must pay the price in worship to our God in the secret place, a life of prayer and a sense of protecting our personal testimony for the sake of others as we carry our own crosses daily.  Our only cause is the spreading of Gospel of Jesus Christ. We do not use the stages of the world to amuse anybody; we use whatever stage God allows us to be in to lift HIM up and to prepare an atmosphere where the soul of man can’t easily resist the love of God.

            Dear Worship Leader or Christian Singer, if your song points at you; if is all about the way you sing, the way you move, the way you act as you sing, your clothing, your style, etc. you are putting up a show. There is no life-changing power coming out of you other than a minuscule version of entertainment. Everything we do MUST point at Jesus who has the power to heal, to restore, to transform and to make people free! We are supposed to be life-changing vessels of the Living God, not entertainers.

The Mystery of Suffering Part 1


“12 Invalid Ways to Respond to Suffering”

            As I write these words, my heart goes out to you who are currently suffering. My heart goes out to you who right now, at this very moment, are experiencing some situations that are ripping your hearts into pieces. I am not writing this article to argue with you or to question the reality of your emotions. On the other hand, you must understand that there is a biblical and non-biblical way of dealing with your pain. I assume that you know enough Bible to know that when we approach problems in a biblical way, even as the pain is not taken away, the end-results and the fruits produced is life in abundance. However, when we deal with things in a non-biblical and carnal way, the end-result is death. God does not justify our sin based on the magnitude of our suffering. With or without pain, His precious righteousness is unchanging. We must ascertain, before we continue, that suffering is not an option, it is a reality that everyone, will face sooner or later.

            Today’s days, it can become difficult for a Christian to understand the concept of suffering. In this way, the church is partially responsible. These new born Christians hear pastors speaking of the many blessing that they will receive; the financial freedom that they seek for but never seem to get. They wonder why their life has to be a living hell at times, as they wonder what they are doing wrong. It is almost like the pages dealing with suffering were taken away from the Bibles of many well-known TV personalities. However Romans 8:17 states:

“Now if we are children, then we are heirs–heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.”

 

Yes, we are heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, but there is catch. We must share in his suffering first. Sharing in the suffering of Christ is the key to sharing in His glory. The problem today is that we want the glory, the anointing and the charismatic gifts without the suffering!

            The word “Suffering” found in Romans 8:17 is defined as, “To suffer or feel pain together; To suffer evils (troubles, persecutions) in the like manner with another.” This definition gets my attention because it clearly indicates that no matter what we are going through, we are not the only ones going through it. On that note let’s go over a list of 12 erroneous ways to respond to suffering:

1. Constantly complaining to others about what you went through.

One of the fruit of the Spirit is “Patience.” Patience means, “To endure tribulations without complaint.” Complaining about what you went through will resolve absolutely nothing.

2. Blaming others for the suffering; that includes God.

It’s everybody’s fault but yours! Psalm 130:3 tells us, If You, Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand?” Have you ever heard the expression, when we point at someone, there are three fingers pointing at us. When we get a revelation of how sinful we are, we will have no problems in looking at our afflictions with a whole different perspective. We will become responsible for our own actions.

 3. Developing a Victim mentality.

This mind-set totally denies God’s redemptive power. 2 Timothy 3:5 tells us that there is group of folk in the church that have a form of godliness, but they deny the power. He ends this verse by encouraging us to turn away from them. To deny God’s power is an insult to the Holy Spirit. We are called to be more than over comers, not victims.

4. Developing a sense of entitlement.

At this stage, people that have endured suffering and are responding to it in a non-biblical way; walk around as if everybody owes them something. They walk as if the suffering they endured is the price already paid for all of their wants. This is a total contradiction to Romans 6:23 that established what we really deserve.

5. Filling with rage and anger as the result of your suffering.

Rage and anger are always manifested behavior that results from an unresolved sin committed against you. Rage and anger is a clear indicator that there is a deep pain in your heart. Every time that you are placed in a situation or obligated into dealing with people that remind you of that hurt, you will retaliate in anger.

6. Non-forgiveness.

People with non-forgiving hearts are constantly bringing the hurt they suffered into a conversation. They use that transgression against them as a VIP pass to always bring up the past when their carnality is confronted. This is a total contradiction of Scripture. As we forgive we are encouraged to never bring that issue up and to seek reconciliation for that relationship. Non-forgiveness, no matter the offense you suffered, is a sin that will keep you bound up and non-productive in God’s kingdom.

7. Self-Centeredness.

Because of your great suffering, all you can focus on is “self” and what “self” wants. Everything becomes about you and your needs.

8. Insensitivity to the suffering of others.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 makes a powerful statement that establishes how a non-biblical life means to focus on us so much that we become insensitive to the suffering and needs of others:

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort,
who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” 

One of the most powerful reasons for suffering is indeed for us to be able to help others in their tribulation. Suffering is part of our training for ministering to the afflicted. You are so used to viewing yourself as a martyr that that you are un-able to see the pain of others.

 

9. A Judgmental Spirit.

So, what else is out there to do when you are hurting? You judge others, you tear them down. Judgmental people have no mercy and no compassion. This kind of attitude totally contradicts Matthew 12:7.

10 Mistrust; that includes God.

Because of all the hurt; it is very hard for people to trust again. That mistrust is against God, also. It is very difficult for people at this level to move with faith. Behind mistrust is a great deal of fear to be hurt again. Mistrust becomes a fragile shield.

11. A Negative Spirit.

It is very difficult for a person without faith to be positive. Usually people at this level are known for being very negative people.

12. Ineptness and/or unwillingness to see the work of the Holy Spirit in other people.

People at this level are in the business of tearing down. They are bitter and they can’t or won’t see the work of the Holy Spirit on anybody, especially the person that caused him/her pain.