Deprecated: mysql_connect(): The mysql extension is deprecated and will be removed in the future: use mysqli or PDO instead in /home/a26f9f83/public_html/articles/includes/config.php on line 159
Home Improvement or New Construction? > NetSparsh - Viral Content you Love & Share

Home Improvement or New Construction?

Jesus said, "No one can see the Kingdom of Heaven unless he is BORN AGAIN," (Jn 3:3). A born again disciple is one who has, literally, been given a new lease on life. He or she gets to start over, sins forgiven. We become new creatures, the old is gone, the new has come, (2 Cor 5:17). The Holy Spirit, the promised parakletos (comforter, in Greek), now dwells within each of us who are disciples of Christ. We are His home. Yes, God... the One who made both Heaven and earth... chooses to live THROUGH those who claim Jesus as Lord so that He can advance His Kingdom THROUGH them. Yes, we become His home but for Kingdom purposes, not for our own benefit.

WARNING:

Many are under the false impression that, as a disciple, our relationship with God simply makes us "better" people. A sort of "we're-in-the-club-and-you're-not" syndrome often sets in. WRONG! We're not BETTER people... we're NEW people! (It's been said that some folks are nicer by nature than Christians are by grace.) We're called "Believers." That means we are to BELIEVE what Scripture says. I believe Jesus told us to go make more disciples, Matthew 28:18-20. Yes, we're now in God's family, but for a definite purpose.

How can this be? Remember, we're spirit-beings having an earthly experience. These bodies will die and our spirit will live forever... somewhere. Heaven or Hell, it's our choice. God Himself wants to co-labor with us to bring others into His Kingdom way of living. So that they can attain REAL life. Often, when someone proudly claims to be a Christian, one cannot help but wonder if they have Life. REAL Life. Jesus said, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life...," (Jn 14:6). The question then is, "Do they have Jesus?" Do we?

Sadly, many non-Christians are under the impression that we THINK we're better than they are. This "holier than thou" perception has led them to describe God's kids as judgmental, hypocritical and boring, among other things.

The words of Christ are what brings about the desired effects in our lives. Too many of us are all too aware that, frankly, since our supposed salvation experience, not only have we not changed one iota, but many of us have done worse things SINCE we were "saved" than we did before! How can this be? Who are we kidding? Many altar workers at large-scale evangelical crusades can attest to the many re-curring "salvation" cards received by those responding to the "altar call." Those organizations that keep good records can verify the vast numbers of "recommitments" that come to the altar year after year, either to be "saved" (apparently hoping it really"sticks" this time) or because they know in their heart that nothing changed after experiencing what they thought was a life-changing moment last time.

The problem is at the root. Our typical idea of salvation is that of one's sins being forgiven, complete with a guarantee of a mansion in heaven in the sweet by 'n by. Unfortunately, this was not what Jesus taught at all.

Jesus focused on the here 'n now, and the manner in which we were to conduct our lives in this new and living way to which He introduced. He even modeled it for us, setting the standard. He taught that we should 1) Repent and believe the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, 2) deny ourselves, 3) take up our cross daily, 4) give up everything, and 5) over 30 times mentioned some form of the phrase, 'follow Me.' It stands to reason that, as we make disciples, we should teach that being such is about following the example of Jesus Christ, doing His works and submitting to the Kingdom of God. Multitudes have a twisted sense of forgiveness without lifestyle change... and call it 'grace'... when, in fact, discipleship is about denying self and glorifying God. We cannot claim citizenship in God's Kingdom and remain chummy with this world's system. If we attempt to do so, yet claim to be saved, we're deceived. Satan loves it when we feel secure about our salvation without also having to reject sin and carnality. He loves it even MORE when we perpetuate this lie from pulpits, in commentaries, Sunday Schools, seminaries, and the Christian media. Are we teaching Eternal Security or Infernal Certainty?

Over the years, I have personally prayed with hundreds of people to receive Christ... the Roman Road, Four Spiritual Laws, ABC's of salvation, Professions of Faith. Then, one day, I stopped. Today, I'm more inclined to "take it away" from one who thinks they want to become a Christian, to have them go home and consult their pillow, count the cost, and call me when they're ready. I've been asked, "What if they die on the way home? You should at least pray a sinner's prayer! After all, Romans 10:9-10 says to 'confess with your mouth'... ."

Frankly, God knows their hearts. They shouldn't have to utter a sound. Is the person with laryngitis, or a mute, forbidden to go to Heaven because they didn't pray a repeated prayer? Manmade doctrines and traditions strike again. Another sacred cow bites the dust.

By way of example, I once asked a group to whom I'd been teaching the Scriptures in the workplace, if everyone there considered themselves to be a Christian. All but one, a young Hispanic woman, claimed to be Christian. The next day, as I was walking toward the elevator, that same woman, walking out of the elevator, grabbed my arm, wheeled me around and said, "Michael, I want to be saved!" Two years later, she's still under my discipleship via eMail and phone. Folks, when the fruit is ready for harvest, it practically falls into our hands. No coaxing necessary.

Was the soil of her spirit prepared through the studies? Yes, but she was inspired to ATTEND the studies by the Christian presence she'd observed in the workplace. The following Sunday night, I met her at work and she followed me in her car to a home meeting where she was lovingly welcomedinto the fold by other Christians for discipleship. Particularly from godly women. Incidentally, within days of this experience, she was in a terrible auto accident which almost cost her her life. She nearly lost her arm which was terribly mangled. She'd been adequately prepared, however. Satan was not happy. The last thing she remembered before the accident? She was talking to her passenger about God.

Why not hold a crusade and tell the masses what Jesus told His potential disciples? Imagine hearing the following message over the PA system in a stadium:"Six times He warned that the world will hate you. Your family and friends will turn against you. He didn't come to bring peace, but a sword that would divide families. You will suffer persecution. You may die. Now, go home and think about giving up your life and all that is dear to you to follow this person called Jesus Christ." I wonder how many would return the next night of the crusade??

"And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for My name's sake, will receive a hundred-fold, and inherit eternal life. But many will that are first will be last, and the last first," (Matt 19:29-30).

Typically, we try to lure people into joining this institution we call "the Church" based upon promises of peace, joy, love, unity, and prosperity. Try to sell THAT rubbish to a Sudanese pastor whose had acid poured all over his hands, in front of his congregation, by Muslim soldiers.

Or the Pakistani village whose Christian members were physically mutilated by radical Muslims.

Or a Chinese evangelist who never sleeps more than a few nights in the same bed for fear of being turned in, even by family members and informers infiltrating his own congregation, while Americans "buy" the Chinese propaganda that there's freedom of religion there.

The common method of Western discipleship is in training new converts to sit, carry a Bible, take a few notes, say 'Amen,' get indoctrinated with non-biblical manmade doctrines, learn new rituals, the chain-of-command, and become "good" at this routine... even "professional." Man, are we ever missing the boat!

No, nothing will change a person like God's Word. These are not "bolt-on" tips for living. Nor are they warm, fuzzy spiritual "thoughts for the day." The Words of Christ are foundational... the only thing on which our new lives can built. And maintained. Use them. Filter every other teaching you've ever heard... or are currently hearing... THROUGH HIS WORDS, even those teachings that come from within the pages of Scripture themselves!

"Therefore everyone who hears these Words of Mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house upon a rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against the house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock," (Matthew 7:24-25)

Doesn't it make logical sense that, in order to be a Christian (meaning, literally, an anointed one; a Junior Jesus), one must follow the teachings of THE Christ? To those desiring to live this new way, as new creations, Jesus asked (perhaps He STILL does),

"Why do you call Me, "Lord, Lord," and do not do what I say?"

"If you continue in My Word, then you are truly My disciples...," (Jn 8:31,32; 15:7)

"He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life," (Jn 12:25).

Need pastoral counseling and prayer? Write or IM me at team1min@aol.com

Every blessing!

Michael
A servant of God
t.e.a.m. ministries
A Message of Discipleship & Encouragement to the Body of Christ
P.O. Box 633
Stephenville, Texas 76401
http://www.planetaryministry.org

Pastor Michael broadcasts an e-Mail message of Discipleship and Encouragement to Christians across the planet each week, reaching millions from many various Chrsitian denominations. This e-Mail ministry has been impacting the lives of multitudes of people since 1999.

In The News:

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

Pulse Nigeria

Spirituality: How to know if your spiritual life needs work
Pulse Nigeria
Well, St. Francis de Sales, a 17th-century spiritual master, has the best answer for you. In his book titled Introduction to the Devout Life, Aleteia reports that he advises believers to do the following in order to improve their relationship with God.


The Killeen Daily Herald

Metaphysical spirituality comes to Killeen
The Killeen Daily Herald
The Texas Metaphysical Fair, hosted by the Austin Metaphysical Academy, brought Shamanic healers, tarot card readers, Reiki energy shifters, mediums, empaths and spiritual counselors along with artisan craft sellers to the Killeen Arts and Activities ...


Humor & spirituality retreat at Stella Center of Renewal
Niagara Frontier Publications
Stella Niagara's Center of Renewal is offering a unique weekend retreat. "LIKE A KID AGAIN: A Spirituality of Childhood for Adult-Sized Living" by Fr. Hugh Burns, OP, will be held Friday dinner through Sunday lunch Aug. 3-5. Jesus said, "Unless you ...


Medical Xpress

Existential spirituality can foster happiness, study finds
Medical Xpress
Existential spirituality may improve health-related quality of life among adults who suffer from neurological illness, according to a new study published in the journal Geriatrics. The Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine researchers who ...


Santa Barbara Edhat

The Spirituality of Aging
Santa Barbara Edhat
The Spirituality of Aging. The Spirituality of Aging title= The Spirituality of Aging. LECTURE. Jul 16 2018 02:11 PM. byEdhat Staff · 0 Comments. Reads 90. Event Date: Saturday, July 21, 2018 - 15:00. The Humanist Society hosts Dr. Vern Bengtson for a ...


Express.co.uk

Coronation Street: Kym Marsh speaks out on spirituality in heartfelt chat about late son
Express.co.uk
The Coronation Street actress and her former partner Jamie Lomas sadly lost their son Archie back in 2009, after he was born 18 weeks premature. Now, the 41-year-old has opened up about how she likes to believe the youngster's “spirit is around” her.


Online Athens

Athens woman's memoir recounts tragic loss, journey into spirituality
Online Athens
Anne Cooper was once an atheist. Though she grew up Catholic in her home state of New Jersey, she turned away from the church as a teenager. She later married and had three sons. When one son died tragically at the age of 16, life for the non-believer ...


American Medical Association

What role should religion and spirituality play in patient care?
American Medical Association
Spirituality is increasingly recognized as an essential element of patient care and health. It is often during illness that patients experience deep spiritual and existential suffering. With clinicians' care and compassion, patients are able to find ...


Auburn Citizen

Donovan: Many paths can lead to spirituality
Auburn Citizen
On Nov. 20, 2006, my life changed forever. I experienced a spiritual awakening I didn't think was possible, which allowed me to shed my obsession with alcohol and follow my calling to help other alcoholics. I found myself at a low point, helpless to ...


New York Times

Must Science Conflict With Spirituality?
New York Times
Does a scientific understanding of the world erase its emotional impact or spiritual power? Of course not. Science and spirituality are complementary, not conflicting. The physicist Richard Feynman reflected on this in a 1981 BBC interview, “The ...

and more »
Google News

Spirituality: Living the Whole

The words 'new age' and 'spirituality' can have people running... Read More

Dimensional Shifts

"Spirit is beyond the void of space. This realm, beyond... Read More

Communicationg Our Faith According to Internet

Following are 17 questions that can be used as a... Read More

A Bellyful of Mindfulness

Taco Bell, the Mexican fast-food franchise, has a new ad... Read More

Animal Totems

What the Animals Tell Us"I am the Sun's son. I... Read More

The Centre of Our Existence!

Most of us have heard talk or have read something... Read More

Recovering In The Water

It was in the middle of the night and the... Read More

Unleashing The Treasures Of The Midnight

'O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom... Read More

A Walk With A King

I seemed to have lost my heart. Now this is... Read More

Go Beyond - You Are Your Own Best Friend, So Start Liking Yourself!

A year ago, a beautiful woman came to see me.... Read More

Transformation in Difficult Situations: Divine Source through Barbara Rose

It is no doubt that so many of you are... Read More

Looking for God - Heres My Story On Finding the Lord

Hopefully you're reading this article because you're intrigued by the... Read More

God Became Man

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.... Read More

Our Virtual Reality Reality

In earlier articles entitled "We Are Not Our Personalities", "Eliminating... Read More

Be Abundant...Set a New Mental Equivalent

Limiting beliefs, just like positive, empowering thoughts, provide a foundation... Read More

The Gods Of Our Planet Earth

Remember me! It's me! Joseph here in touch with you... Read More

Are You Being In Service? Divine Source

Greetings Divine Ones, I am going to ask you a... Read More

Life is a Continuous Prayer

Prayer doesn't just happen when we kneel or put our... Read More

Be Thankful

Some people think just by saying the words thank you... Read More

Kundalini and Going Where Were Supposed To Go

In the early 90's I had a spontaneous Kundalini Awakening... Read More

Is It Real?

If any man be in Christ, he is a new... Read More

Actualizing Personal Truth

Self-actualization comes down to three basic premises: this is who... Read More

Whatd We Miss?

Did we just overlook the amount of love that God... Read More

The Lord is My Shepherd

An acrostic prayer poem.The Lord loves me and is gracious... Read More

When Bad Things Happen (Part 2)

The good that Paul writes about is a commitment of... Read More