Loading...

Posts by: Denver House of Prayer

Is my soul saved?

Articles-header

 

Soul-SavedYour spirit man is instantaneously transformed from death into life, the moment you receive Jesus into your heart, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17). If you were bald before you were saved, you will be afterwards. The context of ‘all things’ here is not your physical body or soul, but your spirit.

 

Salvation of your spirit is not the same as salvation of the soul

This salvation of your spirit is a one-time affair and you gain access to Heaven via that choice of believing on the Son of God. Religious people often use the term spirit and soul synonymously, but they are not the same. The spirit and soul are separate and distinct. This is clearly revealed in scripture, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12). If they were the same then this scripture would not delineate between the two. The scriptures are explicit on this topic and this passage alludes to a deeper understanding of what the Lord requires of us as we grow into maturity in our Christian walk.

Notice that the soul and spirit are mentioned separately in this passage for a reason. For years, Brother Kenneth E. Hagin would discuss with notable scholars and ministers whether or not the soul and spirit were synonymous and it was one of the significant revelations of his ministry that they were separate entities, despite popular opinion to the contrary. The Book of James has further insight into this:

“Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures…..Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls”. – James 1:18, 21.

The first observation here is that the Apostle James is talking to believers in Christ. The Epistles were letters that specifically addressed the Church, not the unsaved. Notice he is saying that your soul needs to be saved, and his audience were believers whose spirits were already saved. The salvation of your soul (which constitutes your mind, will and emotions) is in perpetual process, as you meditate on the word of God.

 

Christians are a work in progress

We are all a work in progress and that work is in the mind, will and emotions in order to conform us to the image of Christ. This transformation, can also be called, ‘maturity’. Those who exhibit maturity display the fruits of the Spirit primarily in their lives (Galatians 5:22-23). There’s an old saying, ‘fruits are grown and gifts are given’. We are cognizant of the gifts and callings of God that are irrevocable (Romans 11:29), yet Jesus said, “You shall know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:16), not gifts, talents, ascendancy or authority. Maturity has to do with the fruits of the Spirit and character. Let’s look at the word.

 

For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.” (Romans 8:29)

The goal of a Christian is not just to be ‘saved’, but to be conformed to the image of Christ in every facet of our being. The Lord wants us to be impactful on those around us, to share His love and be people of humility and integrity. We accomplish this by meditating on the word of God, so that our thoughts, behavior and actions align with His will. This is in addition to your established salvation; influencing others here on earth. You can get ‘saved’, remain a baby, stay in diapers and go on to be with the Lord if you want to, but that will not help your witness here on earth. We are called to maturity. The moment our spirit is ‘born again’, a transformation starts taking place in your soul towards the image of Christ in us. How does that transformation take place? By the renewing of the mind, “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Romans 12:2

 

Importance of renewing the mind

The renewing of the mind is a process and the soul can require restoration. If you have had some struggles with unforgiveness, offense, bitterness, worry, anxiety etc., then your soul might need some restoration. If you’ve been abused or hurt through the actions of others, your soul might need restoration. Guess what, God promises to restore your soul too! (Psalm 23:3). In Scripture the cares of this world and burdens of life are related to the soul, not the spirit and Jesus made it clear that if we take his yoke upon us, we will find rest for our souls (Matthew 11:29). So the scripture makes it clear there is rest and restoration for the weary soul, as we seek the Lord and meditate on His word. Jesus also stated that the soul can be lost or exchanged in the pursuit of worldly gain (Mark 8:36). A man’s spirit is recreated when he is born again. The soul however is in being restored and renewed as we meditate on God’s word.

Did you notice in Romans 12:2 that as your mind is renewed, you are better able to discern the will of God? Knowing His word, which is His will, puts us in a better position to discern His best life choices for us.

In conclusion, no one has reached a point where they can say their soul is fully changed and sanctified from the effects of sin; it is a work in progress and a distinguishable process until the very day we leave this earth because our ‘flesh’ will always have the capacity to sin. We must choose to walk in the Spirit and God equips us daily to do so, as we seek Him.  Your spirit man however is instantaneously saved, as that is a one-time affair and has no due process.

 

Pastor-Carl Senior Pastor Carl Joseph desires to see God move in power in the downtown Denver area. He is joined in the ministry by his wife, Amy. In his spare time, he rides his motorcycle and plays golf.
Play

A Life of Freedom

Articles-header

 

In the United States of America, we live in an independent country with the freedom of choice and rights. Many people in this country don’t realize that our freedom is being challenged and our rights are in jeopardy. If an individual doesn’t stand up and speak up for what they believe in, they’re in danger of losing what they possess. And in some cases, some never even realize the rights they have access too. This is true on a spiritual level, as well. Jesus made a statement in John 8:31-32,”If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Jesus said the key to being free is staying in his word, that’s how we find and maintain our freedom, it’s our Bill of Rights. Notice, it’s not the truth that sets you free, it is the truth you know that will set you free. It’s a lack of the knowledge of the truth that destroys people (Hosea 4:6).

 

Freedom in Christ

When an individual finds a truth in God’s word and applies it to their life, the Son has made that person free (John 8:36). What’s sad is countless people in the world live in a spiritual prison not knowing that Jesus paid the price for their freedom. From their peace of mind, to their salvation, he did it all, paid for it all, and welcomes all who come to him. Many are slaves to sin and feel there is no way out.  This keeps a person in bondage and this is exactly where the devil wants them. When a person believes in Jesus as their Lord, they become a new creation in Christ (II Corinthians 5:17-21). At this point they are free from sin and its power over their lives, because Jesus took their sin and forgave them. That doesn’t mean a believer can go on living in sin, and a life of whatever they please to do. That almost sounds like bondage, but it is absolute freedom. Romans 6:15-18,15 Well then, since God’s grace has set us free from the law, does that mean we can go on sinning? Of course not!16 Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.17 Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you.18 Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living”. Instead of seeking freedom, realize Christ has already set you free.  The guilt and condemnation the enemy brings is now powerless to us in Christ.

 

A life of joy

You serve Christ, the one who justified you and made you righteous, this makes you want to run from sin and live a holy life unto God. Not a life of staunch religious rituals, but a life of freedom and joy in Christ. In the past, I ministered in prisons, and I shared this analogy with the inmates: ‘If someone came in this prison today and paid for everyone in here to be released, there would be two groups of people. One group would leave here and go right back to what got them in here in the first place. Why? Because they’re not truly free yet. They still serve their old lifestyle and the nature of the flesh, which is sin (Galatians 5:1). But the other group would walk out of that prison and live a new life, with new perspective. Someone paid for their release, took their place, and gave them freedom they never could have accomplished themselves.’  Romans 8:1-2 says “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.2 And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.”

 

Only in Christ do we have our freedom and we can walk in newness of life (Galatians 3:22).  Don’t try to become a free person; Jesus already did it for you. Receive it by faith and enjoy a life of freedom!

 

 Bobby-Wayne-2 Associate Pastor Bobby Wayne Musgrove is an ordained minister at the Denver House of Prayer. He is joined in the ministry by his wife, Bobbi Allison, and two children. In his spare time, he is a violinist and loves to hunt.

Why am I so Ticked Off?

Articles-header

 

This candid article has a strange title I know, but I want you to consider your heart condition right now. The bible makes it very clear that you should, “Keep your heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life” (Proverbs 4:23). A better translation for the word keep in this passage is ‘guard’. We are to keep an uninterrupted inventory of our heart condition, guard it from unnecessary wounding’s, or entrapments and lay down issues and concerns, as we progress on life’s journey.

 

Our soul can be wounded by emotions

The Lord had shown me recently that I was getting up tight, impatient with people and downright upset when things weren’t going my way, even in the smallest of matters. Something wasn’t right. I’m not talking about occasionally getting chagrin because of injustice in life but ongoing irritability and impatience in the day to day. The Lord revealed to me that my heart was wounded and I needed to let go of some things and the evident frustrations were a fruit of a deeper root that had gotten hold of me.  Now my personality is more of a choleric/melancholy, so I tend to store things up and not deal with them emotionally at the time when they rise up. Instead of venting some emotion or frustration there and then, I tend to bottle them up and ‘keep on trucking’. This might seem on the outside like I got over them quickly but on the inside of my heart, these issues were compounded because I had not taken them to the Lord and felt obligated to handle them myself. It showed how much the Lord cared for me that He would be so concerned over something that seemed so trivial at the time.

I thought I had to ‘take on’ the issues myself, but He made it clear, I am to take on nothing. This was so liberating. Every hurt, frustration, anxiety, care, worry, concern, anger, offense, etc. is to be taken to the cross once and for all and left there!  I personally love this scripture and live by it, you will too…., “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7)”. Friend, we are not supposed to have any cares in this world, they must be cast on the Lord, when our heart is free we can regain the peace that is temporarily lost.  What a wonderful God we serve! He doesn’t want us to be carrying around any stuff.  My latest saying is, “I couldn’t care less!”, obviously there are things we do care about in this life but when it comes to meeting the rent payment, postulating about outcomes at work, worrying or considering what other people think about me……. “I couldn’t care less!”

 

The condition of the heart matters

The analogy is this; our soul/heart condition is the conduit through which our spirit man flows. It’s kind of like a log jam in a river.  When we are ‘born-again’ our spirit man goes from death to life and we are translated into the Kingdom of God. We then begin the process of transformation in the soul (mind, will and emotions) by the renewing of our mind by the word of God. The word also washes our soul, free of the log jams (Ephesians 5:26). The logs represent a restriction in flow of the rivers of living water (John 7:38) which have their origin in our spirit man. These rivers travel from the spirit to the soul and finally to the body. The logs themselves are all the junk we pick up in life’s journey. They are the cares of this world, hurts, frustrations, betrayals, offenses, unforgiveness, unfulfilled expectations etc.  If we don’t release these soulish blockages, we can hinder the anointing in our lives, not only that but our general feeling of well-being will be affected. I say this because your soul condition can also impact your physical body. For example it states that “envy rots the bones” (Proverbs 14:30) and a word of encouragement or good report, makes the heart rejoice (Proverbs 15:30). Also, pleasant words are sweet to the soul and health to the bones (Proverbs 16:24). This of course is in sharp contrast to the commonly touted belief that, ‘sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me’. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Bible says that words can be health to your bones or cut to the heart (Acts 5:33). Words are very powerful and we need to be very careful about what we say to other people.  There are middle aged people today, who are hindered in life because of the words that were spoken over them as children, by their own parents. These words formed a negative image of themselves.

 

Toxicity in the physical body can be caused by emotions

Dr. Don Colbert has a fantastic book on the topic of soul/body connection entitled, “Deadly Emotions”.  He outlines the toxic effect of unchecked emotions on the physical body. All spheres are interconnected, as the spirit, soul and body all impact one another.  Another log in your stream of living water is ‘offense’. Friends we need to be quick to forgive! It will hinder our walk with the Lord and other people. Offense is a snare my friends. The Lord makes it clear that unless you acknowledge your offense, the Lord remains in the hidden place (Hosea 5:15). We must seek his face, acknowledge our offense, talk to the Lord about it and let it go. The Apostle Paul revealed one of the secrets to his powerful ministry and that it is keeping your conscience clear, especially of offense toward God or man.  Let’s look right here at the scripture as he addressed the High Priest…” And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void to offense toward God, and toward men.” Acts 24:16.

Friends, it’s time to let go of the junk in our souls and let times of refreshing come from the presence of the Lord (Acts 3:19). These times of refreshing come as we place our logs on the Lord’s altar right now, let Him consume them and allow the torrent of the rivers of living water to spring up in your belly, refreshing you this very hour!

 

 Pastor-Carl Senior Pastor Carl Joseph desires to see God move in power in the downtown Denver area. He is joined in the ministry by his wife, Amy. In his spare time, he rides his motorcycle and plays golf.

The Futility of Life Without God

Articles-header

 

There is a remarkable little book sandwiched between Proverbs and Song of Solomon called, Ecclesiastes, and it’s very pertinent to today, despite being written in approximately 930 – 970 BC. Based on the evidence, it’s highly likely that the ‘preacher’ or ‘teacher’, mentioned in this book is no less than King Solomon. He speaks of life, “under the sun” and this term is used 29 times in the book. It should be understood that this term is a euphemism for life without God. Inevitably, without Christ, our lives can become mundane and lack purpose as we endure the apparently meaningless toil of humanity, down through the ages. This book investigates the meaning and purpose of life and comes to the conclusion that without God, it is truly futile. Only God himself can reveal our unique purpose in life as He is our creator. How can the creation possibly know its purpose unless it actively seeks out the creator and architect of its destiny. It’s speculated that Solomon wrote this book in his old age, having lived a godly life for the most part but also having strayed from Jehovah God during his lifetime. He speaks with wisdom having experienced life on both sides of the moral fence. His conclusion is this, “all is vanity and vexation of spirit (1:14)”, indeed my friend, all is vanity and vexation in this life, if we choose to live it apart from God, because without Him, we are led to gratify our soul-ish desires with the pleasures of the flesh. This book has a skeptical tone from a man, who through experience has seen both the injustices and futility of life which he documents in great detail. But he has also paid the price for straying from God during his lifetime. He then provides the answer to man’s woes in the very last sentence of his book.

As the King of Israel Solomon had vast resources at his disposal and began to try many earthly endeavors in order to fill the gaping vacuum in his heart, which everyone inevitably feels when they are disconnected from the living God. In Ecclesiastes 3:11, Solomon explains why men and women are not satisfied with life, because God has put “eternity in their heart” and nobody can find peace and satisfaction apart from Him. St. Augustine also said “You have made us for yourself and our hearts are restless until they rest in Thee.” Friend, the eye cannot be satisfied until it sees the hand of God, and the ear cannot be satisfied until it hears the voice of God.

Instead of seeking God, and coming to the realization of the truth, man instead seeks power, property, sexual gratification and artistic entertainment to fill the gaping hole in his heart. Sound familiar? Although there is approximately a 3000 year gap between the time this book was written and today, these lustful forms of self gratification have not changed throughout modernity. People still seek lasting fulfillment today in the pleasures and uncertain riches of this world, only to find them elusive and unfulfilling in various forms of drinking, sex, entertainment, possessions, drugs, power etc. and the list goes on.

Unfortunately, these vices only provide temporary relief for a disease that’s in fact terminal and that disease is sin. Man down the ages, has sought to fix the world through governmental and political means, without looking at himself firstly as he remains ever blind to his own decrepit sinful condition. These forms of self gratification only serve as sedatives, stimulants or pacifiers which cause us to forget the cares of this world ‘for a season’ but they each have their own unique and potentially severe repercussions.

Seeking to fill the void of life without God

There is a lie sown into our Western culture that if we could only be ‘rich enough or famous enough, or popular enough,’ then all our problems would simply go away. If this were true then the lives of the rich and famous would bear testimony to this. However, looking at the lives of the Hollywood celebrities, rich and famous in the tabloids today, this premise is definitely not justified. They too are fallen creatures in need of a Savior and their litany of sexual promiscuity; alcohol addiction and even drug addiction, are all cries for help, or at least attempts to alleviate the pain of their aching heart. But celebrities are no different from the rest of us. Their mistakes are magnified because of their vast media exposure. Having more opportunities to sin on a grander stage only compounds their problems and doesn’t provide a means for escape, because their futile attempts offer no lasting respite or path to the truth. Having more opportunities to sin is akin to adding fuel to the fire, not a means to put the fire out. We all have to put out the fire in our hearts and only the blood of Christ can do it.

Finding purpose in this life

The basic philosophical questions of ‘who am I?’ and ‘what am I doing here?’ have plagued every generation, including this one. King Solomon no less has expounded upon the search for meaning and its futile pursuit without God. Truly without God life is meaningless, and empty. There are many themes discussed by King Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes and they can be surmised as follows:

  1. The futile pursuit of riches: – Echoed by Christ himself in Matthew 6:19-21, Solomon has much to say concerning ‘mammon or materialism’. He discusses that making dishonest gain at the expense of others and acquiring a lifetime of wealth, only to have someone else spend it after your death is a futile endeavor (Eccl 2:1-11, 18-26; 4:4-6; 5:8-14). Riches do not satisfy the eyes or soul and won’t bring happiness. Those who love silver and gold will always want ‘just a little bit more’. Take it from this author, the richest man ever to have lived.
  2. The cyclical nature of timing and events:- “9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.” (Ecc 1:9) There is nothing new today as God has seen it all before. Even with the advent of technology man finds new ways to sin as his heart is corrupt. The saying that ‘History often repeats itself’, has merit based on this scripture and students of history can testify to history’s repetitive nature.
  3. That salvation through knowledge is vanity – Many think that if they’re smart enough they will escape the fires of Hell. The Gnostics believed this too in the early church period to their detriment. However Solomon saw that although wisdom far exceeded madness and folly (2:2-13); death pays no deference to the wise over the fool. The wise will die and the fool will die and without Christ they’re going to the same destination. ‘Smarts’ won’t save you in the day of judgment my friend. Man has eternity in his heart and temporal earthly things can neither satisfy nor save.
  4. The temporary nature of ungodly men – Man fades away like the grass and all the pursuits of fame and fortune will be forgotten within one or two generations. Only that which is done for God will be remembered (Ecc 1:3,8) and nothing lasting was ever performed by man without God. No generation is different from the rest and man will one day be blown away like “dust in the wind” (1:11).
  5. Justice and equality are elusive – We only have to read the latest news headlines to know this is true, i.e. that life is not fair. Yet God promises to vindicate those who are His (Deut 32:43 & Psalm 18:47) in this lifetime or the next. Man expects fairness and justice because his conscience demands it, yet since the days of Kings (I Sam 8:6) this has been evasive. Freedom is contended for in every generation and is never granted by default. Freedom is never free, it comes at a price.
  6. The secret is to be content – The spiritual appetite cannot be satisfied with soul-ish endeavors. Labor is its own reward whether we have much or little (5:10-12). To be content is to be rich, yet the rich man is seemingly never content. The Apostle Paul stated that contentment must be ‘learned’ (Phil 4:11) and it doesn’t come automatically. Yet, even if the rich learned to be content, they cannot be fully satisfied as a spiritual problem cannot be solved by physical means. Money is a poor master but great servant. We serve God and let money be our servant, not vice versa. Only in Christ are we content and enjoy the peace and joy of our salvation.

Follow God and find contentment

In his closing statement, King Solomon reveals the secret to living a life of contentment and satisfaction, he ends by stating, “The conclusion, when all has seen heard, is: fear God and keep his commandments (12:13). This is the essence of the book, don’t miss it, life can only be truly enjoyed when we are in union with God, and the secret is to fear God and keep His commandments. Only by living within God’s boundaries can we live a fruitful and satisfying life. After all, the society in which Solomon lived thousands of years ago was not too different from our world today. Solomon saw injustice to the poor (4:1–3), crooked politics (5:8), incompetent leaders (10:6–7), guilty people allowed to commit more crime (8:11), materialism (5:10), and a desire for “the good old days” (7:10). It sounds like something out of the pages of USA today.

Solomon experimented with life and discovered that there was no lasting satisfaction in possessions, pleasures, power, or prestige. He had everything, yet his life was empty! There is no need for you to repeat this experiment, someone has gone before you and shared his findings. Let’s accept Solomon’s conclusions and avoid the heartache and pain that must be endured when we experiment in the laboratory of life. These experiments are costly and one of them could prove fatal.

Man always wants something new but there is nothing really new under the sun. Everything in this world ultimately brings weariness and people long for something to distract them or deliver them. The Athenians in Paul’s day, spent their time “in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing” (Acts 17:21). But even while they are speaking, seeing, and hearing these “new things,” they are still dissatisfied with life and will do almost anything to find some form of escape. Of course, the entertainment industry is grateful for this human hunger for novelty and takes advantage of it at great profit, with its never ending conveyor belt of TV shows, DVDs, movies, magazines, gadgets and fashion trends etc.

Solomon wrote, of course, about the basic principles of life and not about methods. As the familiar saying goes: Methods are many, principles are few, methods always change, and principles never do. The ancient thinkers knew this. The Stoic philosopher Marcus Aurelius wrote, “They that come after us will see nothing new, and they who went before us saw nothing more than we have seen.” The only people who really think they have seen something new are those whose experience is limited or whose vision can’t penetrate beneath the surface of things. Because something is recent, they think it is new; they mistake novelty for originality. It’s time my friend to give your heart to Jesus today, lay down the heavy burdens and live an exciting life connected to God!

 

 Pastor-Carl Senior Pastor Carl Joseph desires to see God move in power in the downtown Denver area. He is joined in the ministry by his wife, Amy. In his spare time, he rides his motorcycle and plays golf.

 

Is the Supernatural Real? Part 3

Articles-header

 

Friends, right now there are angels and malevolent spirit entities at work in the unseen supernatural realm all around you. Remember, just because they cannot be seen by the naked eye, doesn’t mean they don’t exist. We know because the Holy Bible says they exist. Angels alone are mentioned over three hundred times in the scriptures, in different categories or classes, ranging from Archangels (who act as messengers or warriors i.e. Michael and Gabriel), Cherubim and Seraphim (whose primary purpose is to guard the glory of God around His throne). Evil spirits are mentioned sparsely in the Old Testament, yet Jesus and his disciples encountered them quite regularly in his three year ministry in the types of unclean spirits, evil spirits, spirits of infirmity, deaf and dumb spirits etc. ‘When kingdoms collide, there is conflict’ and when the power of God is in manifestation, evil must submit as Christ brought Satan and his cohorts to naught on the cross (Colossians 2:15). This goes for us too, as we have authority over the enemy (Luke 10:19, Mark 16:17-18) and the power to cast him out by using the precious name of the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 3:6).

 

Evil is an authentic, pernicious force

It is speculated that Lucifer (later Satan) was an archangel prior to his fall, although he is not specifically mentioned in scripture as an archangel. It states that Lucifer worshipped before the throne, before iniquity was found in him (Ezekiel 28:15). The first sin was pride and because Lucifer was so beautiful he became enamored with himself and considered himself equal to God. This is a warning to us all.  In the days of Lot, angels appeared as physical men to visit his family and warn of the coming destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 19:1). An angel in one instance was responsible for the death of 185,000 soldiers in one encampment (Isaiah 37:36), which just goes to show that these spiritual entities are able to manifest in the physical realm if God allows them to and greatly impact circumstances. Jehovah God is the Lord of Sabaoth (Romans 9:29), which means Lord of ‘Hosts’ or ‘armies’. These armies of angels are on the side of good, not evil. There are numerous reports today of angels assisting missionaries in their darkest hour, primarily offering protection from harm. This my friends is scriptural. We are to look to the word of God not angels for help but they certainly do the bidding of the Lord on this earth (Psalm 91:11).

The bible mentions unseen entities in the hidden supernatural realm and conflicts that may arise in that sphere, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Ephesians 6:12

This scripture alludes to rankings of evil in the unseen realm, with the spiritually wicked in high places being the most powerful. These entities seek to subjugate and influence man without his knowledge, yet in Christ we are victorious, as we have been translated out of the power of darkness into the Kingdom of his dear Son! (Colossians 1:13). Knowledge of the truth sets us free, yet the ignorant are blind to the pernicious influences of spirits today which can also be tied to physical disease in some cases. Our secular society often medicates spiritual problems as it’s the only solution it can provide. That is not to say that all disease is caused by an evil spirit, far from it, yet it is interesting that Jesus in several instances cast out an evil spirit before he healed people (Matthew 12:22; 17:15-18; Acts 10:38, Luke 13:10-17). This validates that demonic entities can be the cause of physical maladies in some cases.

 

Myths and legends have their origin in some measure of truth

Stories of goblins, ghouls, ghosts, fairies, werewolves and vampires etc. have occupied storybooks down the millennia and in today’s popular culture in movies such as Twilight etc. Yet in my personal opinion I believe these appearances although real, arise from another dimension, namely the spiritual realm. In the modern age these stories have been replaced with UFO sightings, but once again, I believe these are nefarious spirits trying to deceive man, posing as something they are not. I do not believe there is life on other planets as the earth was created before the sun, moon and stars, in order to provide light, time and seasons (not other habitations). The lights were created for earth, not vice versa. Therefore UFO’s are purely deleterious spirits under the guise of extra-terrestrial visitors whose goal is to deceive man.

We should remember that Satan has dominion over the air, as man was granted dominion over the earth. He is described as “the prince of the power of the air” (Ephesians 2:2). These UFO sightings come from the air, the stratosphere between Terra Firma and space. In fact the word spirit literally means breath in Hebrew, so the air is where they abide, as do the angels. The spirits also occupy the dry places (Luke 11:24, Matthew 12:43) and the high places (Leviticus 26:30).

 

The recent rise of dark arts in popular culture

One disturbing trend which has reached day time television is the age old practice of ‘necromancy’, or communicating with the dead. The evil practitioners of this charade are not talking to departed souls, but to demons. The bible makes it very clear that to be absent from the physical body, is to be present with the Lord Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:8) or in Hell (Luke 16:22-23). Any interaction with departed spirits is a grand illusion and an abomination in the sight of the Lord (Deuternomy 5:9; 18:10-12) as these practitioners are leading many people into beguilement and damnation. The deception is accomplished as familiar spirits that have witnessed key events in the former lifetime of the dead people, relay them through the medium. This fuels the fire of speculation that the ‘other side’ contains departed spirits. No friend, Heaven or Hell are the final destinations, there is no purgatory or holding place in the spiritual realm.

We are not to be intimidated by the supernatural as the gifts and manifestations of the Holy Spirit are themselves supernatural, yet natural to the believer in Christ. Be cognizant of opportunities to be led by the Holy Spirit in your life and God will use you mightily in this last hour. Know the word, know the truth.

 

 Pastor-Carl Senior Pastor Carl Joseph desires to see God move in power in the downtown Denver area. He is joined in the ministry by his wife, Amy. In his spare time, he rides his motorcycle and plays golf.

Is the Supernatural Real? Part 2

Articles-header

 

If we educate our minds at the expense of our spirit, we are exacerbating man’s potential to sin in a plethora of ways, without ever coming to the knowledge of the truth of the Gospel. The foundation of Greek culture, upon which our present day culture stands, is predominantly based upon philosophy. Philosophy is “a search for general understanding of values and reality by chiefly speculative rather than observational means, i.e. logic, aesthetics, metaphysics etc.“ Notice that ‘truth’ is not mentioned in this definition, because truth cannot be obtained via speculation. Truth comes from God himself and is unobtainable from philosophical pursuits. Such is the compounding frustration of the philosophers. They promise much, but deliver very little. Plato, Aristotle and Socrates are the most infamous of the Philosophers and in all three of their viewpoints, man reigns supreme; there is no mention of the one true God. In essence, especially in Plutocracy, man is meant to “serve the state”, not God. In Plutocracy man was split into three categories and groomed from birth… 1) Guardians – Leaders who rule the State (wealthy elite), 2) Auxiliaries – Army, Police etc. those who defend the State 3) The Producers – Provide the material well-being of the State through servitude, farming and comfort. Man is governed without God and the state replaces God in absolute authority and servitude. This my friend is called oppression and has been witnessed in the oppressive regimes of ancient Egypt, Babylon, Assyria and in Russia, China, Saudi Arabia and Cambodia in the recent past. The nations that forget their God will pay the consequences (Psalm 50:22, Psalm 9:17).

 

Mankind stubbornly refutes God’s existence

God is reduced to a non-existent entity who is ‘dead’ and man pursues knowledge for salvation in a stubborn refusal of the repugnant and obvious decrepit condition of his sinful heart. In ancient Greece, a wealthy ruling elite would then decide what each person would do; to be of use to the state or simply discarded or even terminated, as evidenced by the ancient Spartan culture of child murder, if it was deemed to be unfit. The Grecians had no personal choice in the pursuit to fulfill their own God given purpose.  The Gnostics of old did not acknowledge the concept of sinful man, but by secret knowledge or ‘enlightenment’, they gained an advantage over the masses and become ‘like gods’. The Apostle Paul rightly warned us of vain philosophies. “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. (Colossians 2:8)” These philosophies are circular in nature resulting in a labyrinth of postulations from which no man can escape. There is no absolute truth, simply another adopted philosophy from the latest pontificator. To beguile someone is to “lead away by deception’ or to ‘while away by agreeable occupation”. Satan has to have agreement in your life in order to move (Matthew 18:19), yet he will do so without your knowledge of His existence or consent, if he is able via your ignorance. The very definition of deceit has connotations of stealth, so very few will be knowingly deceived unless they choose it; the vast majority of course, unknowingly. By educating our spirit man in God’s word we are no longer victims of ignorance and the satanic chords of bondage can be severed once and for all.

Friends in our society today, we are bearing the fruit of our humanistic culture, with a ‘progressive’ mindset (which is just another term for liberal) where the state has the final say over our education, family matters, family planning and estates. From the cradle to grave (or before the cradle if we consider ‘Planned Parenthood’), God is ignored and the state is becoming our perceived benevolent benefactor. In this darkness immorality is on an exponential rise as the checks and balances have been thrown out the window.  With each act of perceived benevolence by the government, i.e. Food stamps, doll money, unemployment benefits, long term disability etc. it gains greater control over your life. That is not to say that some people don’t need these benefits as a short term solution, but in the long term, as a nation’s dependence on the government grows, so too does it’s loss in freedoms and rights.

 

Darwin’s theory: man or animal?

We are bombarded with the humanistic mindset rooted in Darwin’s theory of evolution reducing us to beast like status, as children are taught evolution as ‘fact’. Darwin’s hypothesis is rightly called a ‘theory’ as it’s never been proven as fact, although it’s taught that way.  Why do we complain when kids act like monkeys when we teach them they came from apes? The missing link in Darwin’s evolutionary theory will never be found, because it is precisely that….missing. No transformational species has or ever will be found, the theory that we transformed from particle to person over millions of years is a lie.  Coupled with that, there is an increasing rise in Paganism, masked in the Environmental movement with a prominence on ‘mother earth’ over the value of human life. This ‘mother earth mentality’ is paganism re-packaged, which goes against the declaration that man is to have dominion over the earth, the beasts of the field and to go forth and multiply (Genesis 1:26-28). There truly is ‘nothing new under the sun’, and Satan merely pours out the same old lies on each and every generation in more subtle and cunning ways. We of course should be good stewards of the earth and utilize its resources wisely and prevent desecration of forests as best we can but it doesn’t justify arresting people for dolphin genocide whilst sanctioning the murder of 56.4 million children since 1973, at a rate of 1000 per day or 1.4 million per year! Somewhere along the line our society’s priorities became confused. Is our culture really that different from the barbaric cultures of Rome and Greece? By focusing purely on the secular and abandoning the supernatural realm where God resides, man is reduced to the level of beast.

 

 Pastor-Carl Senior Pastor Carl Joseph desires to see God move in power in the downtown Denver area. He is joined in the ministry by his wife, Amy. In his spare time, he rides his motorcycle and plays golf.

Is the Supernatural Real? Part 1

Articles-header

 

Yes, the supernatural is real whether you believe it or not. Your belief system does not affect the reality of the truth.

In today’s secular society, physical evidence trumps all speculation or anything to the contrary. We must have ‘physical evidence’ to justify anything’s existence. The skeptic rules supreme in the secular and scientific fields. The reason is, our western culture is founded upon the Greek mindset and Roman culture that followed shortly thereafter. The mention of ‘god’ is reduced to mythology and fairytales or legends but knowledge was the ‘god’ of the Greeks and knowledge is also lauded today in pre-eminence. Yet knowledge without scientific justification is often mocked in our secular humanist society, with the supernatural downgraded to superstition and irrationality. It’s good to have knowledge, but without knowledge of the Savior, even the knowledge we have can bring sorrow (Ecclesiastes 1:18).

 

Greek viewpoint leads to secularization

The Greek paradigm’s primary focus is education of the mind and physical body at the expense of the spirit. The Greeks and Romans after them had education centers run by the state, to promote an ungodly agenda, teaching their own humanistic philosophies, whilst simultaneously exercising the body in gymnasiums and Gladiatorial coliseums. In fact the existence of the ‘spirit’ of man today is rarely mentioned outside the boundaries of Christianity except for a few fringe groups who dabble in the occult. Your spirit and soul are eternal, your body is not. However if you talk to any African or Asian friends at length, you will find that the manifestations of evil in the forms of demonic possession, street magic, fortune telling, levitation, witch doctors etc. are far more prevalent in Eastern culture. These encounters are very real and not figments of the imagination. Why is this so? Because the Eastern mindset embraces the co-existence of the supernatural realm with the natural realm. As a missionary told me one time, ‘The demons in the West are concealed, in the East they’re out in the open’. In sharp contrast, the oldest documented culture (the Semitic) has a deep seated belief in the supernatural as evidenced by their encounters with Yahweh God and numerous documented miracles they’ve witnessed. There were also historical supernatural encounters with false Gods in the land of Canaan (present day Palestine) which corroborated the existence of these deities. There are numerous mentions of supernatural deities in the ancient cultures of Babylon, Assyria, Macedonia, Scythia and Carthage to name a few, with manifestations in abundance.

 

Satan has blinded the world to his existence

West of Athens any supernatural occurrence today is usually maligned and categorized with the archaic practices of mystics in times gone by (e.g. Druids, Shamans, Kabbalists or old wives fables) but certainly not for today’s ‘highly educated’ society. The irony is, we are educated but blind at the same time. We in the West are both blind and ignorant to the supernatural realm. We are educated in the soul realm at the expense of the spiritual realm (synonymous with supernatural). Satan has indeed blinded the minds of unbelievers to the spiritual realm and the Gospel remains hidden in the darkness (2 Corinthians 4:4). The entrance of the word of God brings light and dissipates this darkness. In the movie ‘The Usual Suspects’, there is an inspiring quote, “The greatest trick the devil ever played was to convince the world, he didn’t exist”. Friends, this is the truth particularly in our current culture. Although the fruits of evil are witnessed firsthand every day in murders, rapes, abortions, theft and euthanasia, society is increasingly blind to the deceptive deceitful schemes and wiles of Satan who works, ‘behind the scenes’ and ‘under the cloak of darkness’, in the unseen hidden realm. The apostle Peter warned us not to be blind to the devils schemes (1 Peter 5:8) after he too experienced firsthand, what it was like to be a mouthpiece of Satan without realizing it (Matthew 16:23). I will contend here that just because something cannot be seen with the physical eye, does not mean it doesn’t exist. In the electromagnetic spectrum alone, there are eleven wavelengths which exhibit radiation. Humans can only see visible light which has its own unique wavelength and frequency, located between the ultra violet and infra-red wavelengths. With certain technologies we are able to access infra-red and X-Rays but our capacity is limited. The second heaven or realm of the spirit which houses the angels, demons and departed souls of the dead in transition to either Heaven or Hell, is as real as the chair you are sitting on right now. If we knew where this realm was located, we could possibly access it scientifically. The very oxygen you breathe for daily life support is hidden from you, yet it sustains you perpetually. Molecules, atoms, protons, bacteria, cannot be seen with the naked eye, yet they exist. The same goes for God himself, for He is a Spirit and he communicates with our spirit (John 4:24, John 16:13), yet He is our creator and blind to the naked eye (normally) as He is a Spirit being contacted via the spiritual realm. If we are born again spirit beings, we are connected to God and disconnected from the realms of darkness (John 3:3, Colossians 1:13).

We cannot blame the devil for everything however as man is accountable for his behavior and has a will of his own. At the same time we cannot ignore, ‘the god of this world’ (1 Corinthians 4:4), ‘the ruler of darkness’ (Ephesians 6:12), and ‘prince of this world’ (John 12:31) who seeks the influence of leaders and nations to take up his dastardly and nefarious agenda. He cannot be ignored, along with his deleterious goals which are to ‘steal, kill and destroy’ (John 10:10). His merciless mandate has not changed throughout the ages, utilizing ignorance and deception as the two greatest weapons in his arsenal. We in Christ are neither deceived, nor ignorant and only knowledge of the word of God can unhinge us from that ignorance.

 

Pastor-Carl Senior Pastor Carl Joseph desires to see God move in power in the downtown Denver area. He is joined in the ministry by his wife, Amy. In his spare time, he rides his motorcycle and plays golf.