Thursday, July 23, 2009

Sunday Recap-False Teachers

False prophets, false teachers, false pastors, false evangelist, false bishops, and such alike, all had their true colors revealed this last Sunday at Church Ablaze. We didn't get into naming names but we sure pulled the curtain back on some of their sneaky doctrines that are causing masses to be led astray.

Last Sunday's message was so rich no one wanted leave. We are getting close to concluding our series on the Sermon on the Mount called "The Gospels Ablaze". Matthew 5-7. We landed on Mat 7:15-20 this Sunday and exposed some false teaching. It was Nathan William's turn to speak and he laid it all out for us. At the closing he had an open mic session for anyone that was aware of false teachings, that they had either seen or been victim to. It was jaw dropping to say the least.

False teachers typically have three M's a method, a motive, and a message.
  1. Their method is by coming to us in sheep's clothing but inwardly they are wild wolves
  2. Their motive is to steel, kill, and destroy
  3. Their message is a false, temporary peace that leads to following after other gods.
Other random wisdom nuggets were:
  • False teachers become what is familiar to you to gain an advantage.
  • They find your weaknesses, then use them against you.
  • Just because everyone looks right, doesn't mean they are right
  • They capitalize on the outward signs, demonstrations, commanding voices, loud microphones, all while the words they are actually saying are laced with false teachings and strange doctrines.
  • Don't judge a prophetic word based off of the vocal tones, heighten emotion, intense stares, or strong grips, but rather simply what being told to you true or not?
  • Most people go off what they see and they don't investigate.
  • Most are led to believe that to investigate a teaching or a prophesy is showing a lack of faith but it is really showing prudence and shores up your belief
  • The Church in Berea (Acts 17:10,11) even took the time daily to search the scriptures on Paul who was an apostle and wrote two-thirds of the New Testament. How much more should we be examining our favorite TV evangelist or people we hear in pulpits today.
  • We should be giving attention to two words, prove and validate. In the mouth of two or three witnesses let every word be established. ( II Cor. 13:1, I Tim 5:19)
  • A prophet that will not submit to being judged for what he or she has said is in violation of I Cor. 14:39-41.
  • God has no problem confirming his word. We have problems waiting on Him.
  • Miracles are real, alive and active today, but beware of what is said after everyone has been captivated by the miracle. False teachers use the miraculous as the candy to lure us into the candy store then fill our minds with their false teachings which are contrary to the word of God.
  • False teachers will prophesy blessing, riches and peace even if there are cursings, poverty, and war. Their goal is to satisfy itching ears.
  • You can tell a false teacher by their fruits. You may hear a good sermon come out of their mouths on Sunday morning, but are they living like a child of hell the rest of the week?

To avoid being ensnared:

  • Study to show yourself approved (II Tim 2:15)
  • Seek the truth not just any answer. If you just want an answer any old thing will do.
  • Truth is a person. "I am the Truth" Jesus said in John 14:6. Anyone that avoids Jesus Christ being the only way to the father is avoiding truth.
  • Mark false teachers and don't listen to them no matter how good it makes you feel. Koolaid is sweet. :-)
Some current false teachings:
  • There is no literal Hell
  • There are many paths to the same God
  • I am Jesus Christ
  • I have another book that is a companion to the Bible
  • You must go through me to get to God
  • The Elitist that take a small truth out of the word of God and build a ministry around it and send everybody else to hell that doesn't accept it until you find yourself isolated from people you once called brother and you are the only right person in the whole world.
  • Taking faith to un-biblical extremes; to the point where people believe that they have no faith because it didn't turn out the way they said it would.
  • Treating giving like a Vegas slot machine. Living unrestrained, sinful lives but thinking you can sow a financial seed and get 100 fold increases on your money.
  • Special chants and confessions that can twist God's arms into doing exactly what you say.
  • Relying on visions, angels, and prophesies that are contrary to the word of God.
  • On and on and on...
This verse below says it best:

II Timothy 4:3-4 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, (4) and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.

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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Daddy Time Pt. 4-Wisdom for children

Yes, it is Daddy time! That special event where I get to spend one-on-one tine with my children. Jerod our second born is ten going on twenty four. When I think of Jerod, I think unique. Sometime the little boy has my wife and I in amazement. On our daddy times in the past we have gone to the book store with our drawing pads, found good pictures in a book and drew for thirty minutes. On this specific daddy time he wanted to learn some new basketball moves so we went to the park.

I am perplexed at how this DNA thing works. My wife and I looked at each other and said, "how did we produce a child that is like neither one of us?" This guy takes obedience, diligence, and consistency to another level. He reminds me of rules I made that I forgot about. His favorite words are "Daddy said this, Mommy said that, God said this". I will have to blog about his personality later. Needless to say I have learned alot from watching him. He is living proof that parents are here to shape and mold but God has put something in our children that we did not originate.

Jerod is so funny, I have tried to stress the importance of spending quiet time with God in the morning and getting up in prayer and reading the bible. Well I am embarrassed to say this boy puts me to shame. He often wakes up before me and is typically 10-15 chapters ahead of the rest of us in our reading. The boy comes and borrows my parallel Bible, study Bible, and Strong exhaustive concordance. Like I said earlier it is amazing to watch God working so purely in a young child and at such a young age. Daddy time not only is a time for me to teach my children. But I have to say I am taking notes too. Jesus said unless we become as a child we will not enter the kingdom.

In Part 3 of this "Daddy Time" series I asked the question, "why do we read out of the book of proverbs on daddy time?" Here are seven reasons:
  1. Proverbs can be read in a short amount of time. Since the Proverbs are like a collection of one-liners we may only end up reading one or two verses and discussing it. It is long enough to make the point, but short enough to not lose their attention.

  2. I want my children to have more than just head knowledge, but know how to apply that knowledge in wisdom. Head knowledge says, lying is a sin. Wisdom says, not only is lying a sin but tells you the type of people that lie, why they lie, what circumstances tempt them to lie.

  3. Proverbs are abstract, this is perfect for children. The book uses lots of parables, similes and metaphors. It gets their minds and imaginations working in overdrive to seek understanding. The book is designed to cause you to seek. That is one of the keys to being wise is knowing how to seek, listen, and get understanding. For example: Prov 3:6,7"Be not wise in thine own eyes, fear the LORD and depart from evil, it shall be health to thy navel and marrow to thy bones." Oh man! We could talk about this one for hours...What does it mean to be wise in your own eyes? Are you suppose to be scared of God? What does it mean to depart? What is the purpose of a navel? What is marrow to your bones? You see two verses of scripture can teach about five to ten different life principles to my child in 15 minutes or less. Now that is customer satisfaction.

  4. Proverbs cover a broad range of subjects. If I were to come up with my own things to talk about they would always be funneled through my own interest. Reading the proverbs kind of gives a dad some structure and insures you are giving your child a more exhaustive view of the world through the lens of scripture.

  5. Proverbs has a built in "How to" manual for teaching my children how to be wealthy, how to be diligent, how to manage business, how to handle money, how to choose the correct path, how to avoid sexual immorality, how to control anger, how to control their tongue, how to be a fool, how to be get the picture. The redundancy of some of the principles helps drill home the point.

  6. Proverbs is the single most important book in the bible or any book ever written on child discipline and training. If it wasn't for this book Lisa and I would be lost in a sea of child psychology and expert opinions that would be leading our family down a chaotic and stressful home life. The book acts as a third party that reinforces your principles in your home.

  7. Most of Proverbs were written by one of the wisest men on earth (Prov. 1:1). Solomon had wisdom that was put in his heart directly from God. The wisdom he was given exceeded all of the kings of the earth. (I Kings 4:29-30, I kings 10:23-24). There was one with wisdom greater than Solomon, Matt. 12:42, and that is Jesus Christ himself. In James 1:5, God said he would freely give wisdom to everyone that ask. So to give my children exposure to this caliber of Godly wisdom is an opportunity I cannot pass up.

I love Daddy time! God desires all Fathers to turn their hearts to their children. Malachi 4:6 "And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers..." I am learning that in order to have my children's heart they must have mine.

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Saturday, July 18, 2009

God and Family First-Balancing Time

My best attempt at balancing time often fails. Fellas any of this sound familiar?
-I need to spend more time with my wife
-I have demands at work
-My children want my attention.
-I have heavy commitments at my local church
-My home projects are slipping behind with a new season approaching.

Some days you probably feel you are living life on the edge. The topic of balancing time is probably one of my biggest challenges.

Since there are only 24 hours in a day and so much to do something has to get the short end of the stick. Something has to have it’s time cheated. Assume your top 4 priorities are as follows:
1) Personal Relationship with God
2) Relationship with your Wife
3) Relationship with your Children
4) Your Job

Most of us dedicate our time on number 4, then 3 then 2 then number 1. Like this.
4) Your Job (9-10 hours)
3) Relationship with your Child (45min-1 hour after work family time before bed)
2) Relationship with your Wife (30 min. eye to eye heart to heart communication)
1) Personal Relationship with God (10-15 min. personal prayer and devotions)

Since your fourth priority consumes so much time then Items 1,2,& 3 should never have there time cheated except for extra-ordinary circumstances.

Moral of the story the quality time you dedicate for God, Wife and Children should be the last things you choose on the list to cheat time. We as men must realize that if we won't cheat those top (3) that God will make up the difference for us.
If it is our jobs that get cheated (on time) God can make up the difference. If it is home maintenance that gets cheated (on time) we have to realize that God can make up the difference. If it is a buddy or social club that gets cheated (on time) God can make up the difference. The time we spend on the top (3) may be small in duration but it is very fragile and can't afford to be cheated on. The time is ESSENTIAL for a Man of God.

God's word says if we honor God he will honor us. I Sam 2:30, John 12:26

Take care of your family, that is honoring God, and remember HE WILL MAKE UP THE DIFFERENCE! Read your Bible and pray daily and HE WILL MAKE UP THE DIFFERENCE!

Without fueling your top three priorities with love and attention then all other priorities below it will struggle.

In 2005 I listened to a message by Andy Stanely on the Focus on the Family broadcast on the topic "Putting Family First." It changed my life. The Ministry has since rebroadcasted this sermon almost every year since it has impacted so many people's life.
Putting family first Part 1 and Putting Family First Part 2
If the links some how don't work search for this title "Putting Family First Andy Stanley" in your google search engine .

I know this topic is not just for men, it applies to women also. I am just intimately acquainted with the male struggle on this one. I am "pressing toward the mark" myself. Anybody join me?

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Ignore this post..this is a test

I am doing a test for the email subscription service. Ignore this post.
Did the title come out right?

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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Sunday Recap-narrow or broad...straight or wide?

Nuggets of Wisdom from Sunday at Church Ablaze
  1. Worship was full of celebration yesterday. There was massive joy in the room. It is great to see people free to praise God with all of their heart. Dancing, clapping, arms lifted, shouts of praise, all for the King of Kings.
  2. Heard from one of my favorite teachers today, Nathan Williams. The only man that can slice a piece of pie into twenty piece. If you leave from his presence without understanding you have to be hard of hearing. Clarity and comprehensive are two words that fit his teaching style.
  3. Today we covered Mat 7:13,14 straight gates and narrow way vs. wide gates and broad ways. One leads to life the other leads to destruction.
  4. The gate represents a point you enter into. The entry point into an abundant life in Christ has prerequisites that everyone must meet to enter in.
  5. The way represents the path or course of conduct. Once you enter in there is a way that is right and way that is wrong. No in between.
  6. There are so many that choose to take the wide gate and broad way, that the massive numbers will make you think that their wrong is really right. Quantity doesn't equal quality when it comes to doing right by God. Jesus is coming for the few that find the straight gate.
  7. In most cases going against the grain, being that fish that is swimming up stream, taking the road least traveled is the right way even though it doesn't feel like it.
  8. The path of least resistance can lead to temporary comfort and pleasure but can end in destruction.
  9. Our walk with Christ is personal but not private. Our conduct should set an example and provide evidence that God is real.
  10. We are mocking God when we choose to live our own lives apart from HIM. Jesus' sacrifice was so we can have the power and grace to live a righteous life.
  11. Jesus' ways that are more restrictive are for our good.
  12. The world doesn't ask for much but takes everything, Jesus ask for everything and gives you more in return.
  13. Doesn't take a whole lot for God to do a lot.
  14. What God asks us to do is not hard but doing it consistently is what presents a challenge.
  15. The small choices I make today will affect my future outcomes rather they will end in destruction or lead to life. CHOOSE LIFE.
  16. When it comes to right and wrong calling me narrow minded is a compliment.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Social Networking-Ten things I learned by fasting from it

Well today I got off a 12 day fast from Facebook, twitter, and blogging. Ten things I learned were:

  1. Since God wired me with a love for people I can get "ate up" quickly with social networking.
  2. With all good things, temperance (self-control), moderation, and boundaries are needed in order to remain fruitful and not fruitless.
  3. Some productivity tools can leave you unproductive if you do not manage your time with them.
  4. Staring into a phone, laptop, or desktop means your back is to your family. There is a time and place for everything under the sun.
  5. As I was unplugging (removing email notifications, deleting apps, removing rss, etc.) I realized that social networking is like a spider web that I got caught in and didn't realize I was getting pinged from so many directions.
  6. Communicating over cyber space repeatedly has a tendency to lower your tolerance and patience for normal, old fashion face to face communication.
  7. Taking the facebook app and tweetdeck off my phone during my fast made me a safer driver :-)
  8. My work day was much more cohesive when my mind was not shredded with thoughts to check updates or feeds. Instead of just having constant access to updates and checking feeds, I will now have blocks of time to do it.
  9. I understand what Paul said in 1Cor. 6:12 "All things are lawful for me," but not all things are helpful. "All things are lawful for me," but I will not be enslaved by anything...Even things that are good and permissible can consume you and become unbeneficial. FAST until you can get back control of that area in your life.
  10. The most important people in my life are in the four walls of this house and we share a last name.
Next is it possible to take an email fast? Hmm not sure I can swing that one. Somebody else try it and let me know.