Sermons

Messages preached and taught recently on

THE NEEDS OF THE CHURCH and
THE TRUTH OF THE GOSPEL . . .

GOD HAVE MERCY, WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE CHURCH?


The Heart of the Gospel: ANOINTED MESSAGE on Isaiah 53.


Isaiah 53 THE HEART OF THE GOSPEL MESSAGE Part 2.


WHAT IS TRUE, BIBLICAL MODESTY ? . . . "Godly, Modest Women"


"Godly Modest Women"


Pagan Christianity
and
Reimagining Church

www.paganchristianity.org


By Frank Viola and George Barna


RETHINKING CHURCH

The Eye-Opening Bestsellers

Pagan ChristianityReimagining Church

In January 2008, Pagan Christianity rocked the Christian world. Yet it was only the first half of the argument. It was never meant to be a stand-alone book. In August 2008, Reimagining Church was released. It's the second half of the argument. Both books can be likened unto a puzzle. Pagan Christianity demonstrates that the picture on the box has been wrong, and that's why the pieces haven't been fitting together. Reimagining Church presents a fresh vision of the picture on the box that's rooted in the teachings of Jesus and the apostles. Pagan Christianity is the deconstructive side of the argument; Reimagining Church is the constructive side. Both books go together, forming a compelling and insightful vision of the church after God's own heart.





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A New Type of Preacher


Sermonindex.net


By Dr. A. W. Tozer




The Gift of Prophetic Insight


Gift of Prophetic Insight


Dr. A. W. Tozer




Picture of a Prophet


Picture of a Prophet


Leonard Ravenhill


The prophet in his day is fully accepted of God and totally rejected by men.


   Years back, Dr. Gregory Mantle was right when he said, "No man can be fully accepted until he is totally rejected." The prophet of the Lord is aware of both these experiences. They are his "brand name."

    The group, challenged by the prophet because they are smug and comfortably insulated from a perishing world in their warm but untested theology, is not likely to vote him "Man of the year" when he refers to them as habituates of the synagogue of Satan!

    The prophet comes to set up that which is upset. His work is to call into line those who are out of line! He is unpopular because he opposes the popular in morality and spirituality. In a day of faceless politicians and voiceless preachers, there is not a more urgent national need than that we cry to God for a prophet! The function of the prophet, as Austin-Sparks once said, "has almost always been that of recovery."

    The prophet is God's detective seeking for a lost treasure. The degree of his effectiveness is determined by his measure of unpopularity. Compromise is not known to him.


He has no price tags.
He is totally "otherworldly."
He is unquestionably controversial and unpardonably hostile.
He marches to another drummer!
He breathes the rarefied air of inspiration.
He is a "seer" who comes to lead the blind.
He lives in the heights of God and comes into the valley with a "thus saith the Lord."
He shares some of the foreknowledge of God and so is aware of impending judgment.
He lives in "splendid isolation."
He is forthright and outright, but he claims no birthright.
His message is "repent, be reconciled to God or else...!"
His prophecies are parried.
His truth brings torment, but his voice is never void.
He is the villain of today and the hero of tomorrow.
He is excommunicated while alive and exalted when dead!
He is dishonored with epithets when breathing and honored with epitaphs when dead.
He is a schoolmaster to bring us to Christ, but few "make the grade" in his class.
He is friendless while living and famous when dead.
He is against the establishment in ministry; then he is established as a saint by posterity.
He eats daily the bread of affliction while he ministers, but he feeds the Bread of Life to those who listen.
He walks before men for days but has walked before God for years.
He is a scourge to the nation before he is scourged by the nation.
He announces, pronounces, and denounces!
He has a heart like a volcano and his words are as fire.
He talks to men about God.
He carries the lamp of truth amongst heretics while he is lampooned by men.
He faces God before he faces men, but he is self-effacing.
He hides with God in the secret place, but he has nothing to hide in the marketplace.
He is naturally sensitive but supernaturally spiritual.
He has passion, purpose and pugnacity.
He is ordained of God but disdained by men.


Our national need at this hour is not that the dollar recover its strength, or that we save face over the Watergate affair, or that we find the answer to the ecology problem. We need a God-sent prophet!

I am bombarded with talk or letters about the coming shortages in our national life: bread, fuel, energy. I read between the lines from people not practiced in scaring folk. They feel that the "seven years of plenty" are over for us. The "seven years of famine" are ahead. But the greatest famine of all in this nation at this given moment is a FAMINE OF THE HEARING OF THE WORDS OF GOD (Amos 8:11).

Millions have been spent on evangelism in the last twenty-five years. Hundreds of gospel messages streak through the air over the nation every day. Crusades have been held; healing meetings have made a vital contribution. "Come-outers" have "come out" and settled, too, without a nation-shaking revival. Organizers we have. Skilled preachers abound. Multi-million dollar Christian organizations straddle the nation. BUT where, oh where, is the prophet? Where are the incandescent men fresh from the holy place? Where is the Moses to plead in fasting before the holiness of the Lord for our moldy morality, our political perfidy, and sour and sick spirituality?

GOD'S MEN ARE IN HIDING UNTIL THE DAY OF THEIR SHOWING FORTH. They will come. The prophet is violated during his ministry, but he is vindicated by history.

There is a terrible vacuum in evangelical Christianity today. The missing person in our ranks is the prophet. The man with a terrible earnestness. The man totally otherworldly. The man rejected by other men, even other good men, because they consider him too austere, too severely committed, too negative and unsociable.

Let him be as plain as John the Baptist.
Let him for a season be a voice crying in the wilderness of modern theology and stagnant "churchianity."
Let him be as selfless as Paul the apostle.
Let him, too, say and live, "This ONE thing I do."
Let him reject ecclesiastical favors.
Let him be self-abasing, nonself-seeking, nonself-projecting, nonself- righteous, nonself-glorying, nonself-promoting.
Let him say nothing that will draw men to himself but only that which will move men to God.
Let him come daily from the throne room of a holy God, the place where he has received the order of the day.
Let him, under God, unstop the ears of the millions who are deaf through the clatter of shekels milked from this hour of material mesmerism.
Let him cry with a voice this century has not heard because he has seen a vision
no man in this century has seen.

God send us this Moses to lead us from the wilderness of crass materialism, where the rattlesnakes of lust bite us and where enlightened men, totally blind spiritually, lead us to an ever-nearing Armageddon.

God have mercy! Send us PROPHETS!


Copyright (C) 1994 by Leonard Ravenhill, Lindale Texas -



Understanding Scripture


Kathy A. Smith


Understanding The Differences In Bible Versions - Part 1


"Not all Bible versions are equal. Is the King James Bible the inerrant, preserved word of God? Find out here! God's Word is forever settled in heaven."

Understanding The Differences In Bible Versions - Part 2


Kathy A. Smith continues her expos� on why not all Bible versions are equal.



Was Christ Really God?


HERE is the CORRECT BIBLICAL and THEOLOGICAL position on this extremely vital and controversial issue:

JESUS WAS [and IS} 100% GOD as touch His Deity,
and 100% Man as touch his humanity.
THE PERFECT and Divinely-orchestrated UNION of GOD and Man.
JESUS IS ONE with THE FATHER, and ONE with THE HOLY SPIRIT: Co-Equal, Co-Eternal, Co-Creators and Sustainers of all that is or ever shall be.

Please see the excellent Bible-study below . . .




The Deity of Christ


A Biblical Study of the Divinity of Jesus Christ
Pastor Jim Feeney, Ph.D.

See biblical proof of the Deity of Christ.


The Deity of Christ. Is Jesus God, Deity in the flesh? Or just a man?



BIBLE RESOURCES






New Testament Documents by FF Bruce Contents Page
THE NEW TESTAMENT DOCUMENTS. Are they Reliable? By F. F. BRUCE, M.A., D.D., F.B.A. ... THE NEW TESTAMENT DOCUMENTS:THEIR DATE AND ATTESTATION

Stand to Reason: Is the New Testament Text Reliable?
Is the New Testament Text Reliable? by Gregory Koukl ... Can we know for certain that the New Testament has been handed down accurately? Yes, we can. ...

Are the New Testament Gospels Reliable?
Are the New Testament Gospels Reliable? Vocation and Relationship. Part 1 of 3. by Rev. Dr. Mark D. ...

NT Historically Reliable
The New Testament: Absolutely Reliable. Historically ... Jesus' enemies, the Jews, also confirm New Testament claims about Jesus, his ...

GRACE & TRUTH


content:

A few excerpts from Randy Alcorn's very thoughtful and beautiful book,

THE GRACE AND TRUTH PARADOX . . .


" Some churches today embrace truth but need a heavy dose of grace. Other churches talk about grace but cry out for a heavy dose of truth. "

~~~ ACHIEVING BALANCE ~~~


The apparent conflict that exists between grace and truth isn't
because they're incompatible,
but because we lack perspective to
resolved their seeming paradox. The two are interdependent. We
should never approach truth except in a spirit of grace, or grace
except in a spirit of truth. Jesus wasn't 50 percent grace, 50
percent truth, but 100 percent truth.

Truth-oriented Christians love studying Scripture and theology and
doctrine. But sometimes they're quick to judge and slow to forgive.
They're strong on truth, weak on grace.

Grace-oriented Christians love forgiveness and freedom. But
sometimes they neglect Bible study and see moral standards as
"merely legalism." (which it is not). They're strong on grace,
but weak on truth.

Countless mistakes in marriage, parenting, ministry, and other
relationships are failures to balance grace and truth. Sometimes
we neglect both. Often we choose one over the other.

A paradox is an *apparent* contradiction. Grace and truth aren't
really contradictory. Jesus didn't switch on truth and then turn it off
so He could switch on grace. Both are permanently switched on
in Jesus. Both should be switched on in us.

What would Jesus do? There is always one answer:
He would act in grace *and* truth.

Truth without grace breeds a self-righteous legalism that poisons
the church and pushes the world away from Christ.
Grace without truth breeds moral indifference and keeps people
from seeing their need for Christ.

Attempts to "soften" the gospel by minimizing truth keep people
from Jesus. Attempts to "toughen" the gospel by minimizing grace
keep people from Jesus. It's not enough for us to offer grace OR truth.
We must offer both."

~ Randy Alcorn, THE GRACE AND TRUTH PARADOX, pgs.15-18

And here's a classic: an excerpt from page 29, same book:


~ THE COST OF GRACE ~


"Hounded by the Pharisees, betrayed by a friend, forsaken by
His disciples, brutalized by police, beaten by His inquisitors,
led in disgrace to a rigged trial.
Arrogant men sitting in judgment over Him, crowning Him with
thorns, mocking and disdaining. Beating Him without mercy, nailing
Him to the cross, the worst and most shameful of tortures, stretched
out between two common thieves.
Miserably thirsty, utterly forsaken by His Father for the first
time in eternity, ... the picture of complete aloneness.
Hell on earth ! Not just one man's hell, but the hell of billions.
At any moment - in a millisecond - He could have called legions
of angels to deliver Him and destroy His enemies. Instead, He bears
forever the scars of sin, rebellion, mockery, and hatred...the
glorious scars of God's grace toward us. "

" The cost of redemption cannot be overstated. The wonders of grace cannot be overemphasized. Christ took the hell He didn't deserve so we could have the heaven we don't deserve. - THAT was the cost of GOD's Grace toward a fallen race. "



THOUGHTS AND PROVERBS TO LIVE BY


1) “This too shall pass.”
2) “PRAISE GOD ANYWAY!”
3) Love is always the right response.
4) You can disagree without being disagreeable.
5) EVERYONE has a right to be wrong now and then.
6) PRAY FOR WISDOM: Know what not to compromise, and how and when to be accommodating toward others.
7) PRAY FOR WISDOM: Know when and how much to give, … and when to withhold from the thief or the leech.
8) Better to be wronged than to be the one who wrongs.
9) Speak less and say more.
10) “DO YOUR BEST, AND LET GOD DO THE REST.” … He has a perfect plan and Will. Learn to see it and follow it.
11) Whatever else you may do:determine to be courteous & kind to others.
12) Love is not blind, just marvelously tolerant.
13) True courage is Grace under pressure.
14) Remember: GOD ALWAYS has the last word.
15) Whatever you do: never, ever, ever “deify” your own opinion.
16) GOD ALREADY KNOWS ALL ABOUT IT: so don’t sweat it.
17) Here is the one proverb we all need most to memorize: “Pride goeth [not only] before a fall; … pride goeth before destruction.”
18) HERE IS WISDOM: your personal, racial, family, religious, and nationalistic PRIDE is absolutely, positively one of THE WORST ENEMY you have in this life, … and it is the one thing most likely to damage your relationships with others and with GOD. GET RID OF IT. (!)
19) “GOD knows how to humble the proud.” … so let Him.
20) Humility is to purity what warmth is to sunshine.
21) BE HUMBLE or you’ll stumble. *See proverb #18*
22) Seek always to be discerning, … but not judgmental or condemning.
23) Only correct others when truly necessary, … and even then: be gentle, but firm.
24) Leave all vengeance & judgment TO GOD. He’s the only one with all the facts, understands the motives involved, and THE ONLY ONE with the Divine Right to Judge anyway.
25) All those who claim Christ as their Saviour, … but reject Him as LORD are in grave danger of being found to be *living a lie.* “Believe on
THE LORD Jesus Christ: and you shall be saved.”



A Thought Poem


(help for the hollow men)
Did you ever notice how everyone tries to “prove” how “right” they are about many things they do not actually know with real certainty. ?
Truly, this is mostly mere foolishness and vanity.
we know that we are mortal and we die.
we know we have this guilt and emptiness inside.
we are the hollow men. let’s admit it.
and only women and children, … and GOD
seems capable of filling the deep, deep, and unavoidable void.

We are the hollow men. searching for some meaning
and significance in a world gone mad
with self serving lust that utterly defiles all that it touches such that all that should Be is pitifully tarnished and twisted beyond recognition.

We are the hollow men. Who or What will change or transform this awful aching alienation?

We who secretly fear utter aloneness more than death.
What can be done for us?
TO WHOM shall we go?

Suddenly, a thought, - a hope beckons at a near yet transcendent distance:
A Thought, - A Voice:
“your Home, your Shalom was lost long ago
when you decided that your will would be your own god.”
– “that you would have a dream,
- an existence outside of and apart from Me,”
said The EternaL One.

Return to Me
And I Will fill your void

With Hope & Truth & Love & Reality:

For I AM
The Life, … The Way,
The Truth That Lives Forever.”

all else,
- all else is but a vain and passing shadow of flickering lights…and chasing after the wind…


Again He spoke,
“you do not know (nor truly understand) what you think (or profess) you know
UNTIL you have come to a Knowledge of Me

Through surrender
To The only I AM.


“your” “i am” will not Be, but will cease

UNLESS
you find and rightly acknowledge Me.”
said The LORD YahOvah-GOD.

“man without GOD is a vain, - a tragic and very foolish thing.
And so often: even the very religious miss Me,”
said The LORD.

A question for you now, my friend:
What will you do? What will you say? When GOD, - The Measure of all, -
The and Sovereign of the Universe, - calls you to account?
will you strut your stuff? will you “mightily defend” yourself? and then tell Him “how worthy” you truly are.” ?

Truly, will you even DARE to open your mouth before Him?
Pure, Radiant, unblemished Righteousness:

REALITY & TRUTH.
No pretense. No shadows. No excuses.

In THAT awesome Moment: will you have an Advocate to exonerate? …
… or a prosecutor to convict and condemn?
… which will it be ?
Which will it be?

Long ago, The Perfect Victim and Substitute said, (speaking to all)
“no one comes to [is reconciled to] The Father
EXCEPT BY ME.” … no one.

Please understand the truth:
you don’t appeal to “your own” “innocence”
or “righteousness” or “your” “goodness.”
not at all.
you are a hollow man (with many excuses), …
And yet JESUS says, “Come unto Me.” …
and then He leaves the choice to you.

What will you do? What is your answer?
your heart, … your very soul must give the answer.

And He will then perfectly
and righteously
Judge accordingly.

His Will, His choice, …
and your choice.
Choose wisely.
Len Hummel 11/16/2008
For Clearlight Ministries
Please feel free to share this with others.




God is Yeshua!

THOUGHT POEM2

every life


Every life above the animal or the simple mere-ness
of “exist” and nonexist
strives, - some poorly, some mightily, …
some desperately and ruthlessly
to leave behind a memory and impact
that does not vanish like a morning mist, or a voice
that fades as a lonely cry in a distant & desolate canyon . . .
most
live life without awareness or significance

except to add to the world’s sorrow, brutality, and vanity.
Why is this? Why? this seeming incapacity
to think, inquire, to see beyond the mere grasp of the moment ?
Why? so many weeds and tares,
so little wheat, … and even less fruit
without the rot of pride or arrogance or vanity, … why?
When and how does a man or woman become human
and something truly above the animal. ? … UNDERSTAND:
Something must stir, - must awaken deep within:
to connect with a noble longing and desire…
“i am more and meant to be more than this crazy, maddening, vain
and utterly earthbound life.”
“i would sing with the stars and soar with the eagle.”
“i would be and do all i can to make this world a better place
for body & soul, … then lay me down to rest in Jesus, Who in Himself
made the way back to GOD and Paradise.

~ AFTERWORD ~
Wise & Wonderful Is The Jesus I Love.
He does not condemn or control. but He Is Strong to require the Right and the good.
Strong to lead & guide & correct. . . .
O thank GOD He cares to correct us (and protect us & deliver us)! from our foolish and wrongful ways.
He chastens in Love.
He wounds, He binds up our wounds.
He comforts, … then shows a much better way.
Why? why stray? from a Shepherd Who loves your soul as no other would or possibly can?
foolish heart, return to your first Love.
He awaits with loving, wounded, outstretched hands,
… saying softly,

“I gave My Life for you
that you might Love & Live in Me.”
Jesus, sweetest, strongest, and dearest of all:
i love You.
i always shall.
You are The Head & The Heart of Life itself.
Tho You are yet despised & forsaken by this world:
i will love You, my Lord & my King,
to the end of Time.
Len Hummel
12/28/2008



Why I Believe In God


By Winkie Pratney

I believe in God
because I am a child of the age that asks of life, ' Why? '
so I walked a road of honest reason, searching,
to find each answer pointing like light in His direction.
I needed a pathway
I reached for reality
I hungered to live —
And, in truth, He was closer, - far closer than I dreamed.

I believe in God.
Each day this world declares Him;
His wisdom stamps each snowflake, ' Made in Heaven ' !
In the fresh chill of each new day
the air is alive with His closeness.
I feel His sky flare blue in praises above me,
watch a warm wind running ripples as if He breathes across
a field of glorious green;
I grip the good earth
and feel its rich and fertile river cry,
' He lives! '

How can I help but believe?
I believe in God
when something deep within cries out
that I am not a mere child of chance,
a lucky freak that somehow grew unguided
from mud without a mind.

I believe in God
for I am more than chemical change.
I am a man —
I know
I feel
I live
and love
and He Who made me in His image
is worthy of my worship.
I have known God's nearness
for I have feet of clay and there are times
when none could see if I should choose the wrong,
but when some sin would be so simple
and I feel it strangely to fascinate,
Someone rightly and ever seems to be there;
A Someone Who puts me on my honor;
Someone Who dares me do the difficult —
and no one is with me, my friend, no one … but God.

There is one Book that speaks to me of God;
it struck deep within my being
a sacred flame that did not and cannot die.

This Bible tells of other men who felt as lost as I
who came with childlike trust
and found He did not lie.
Is it so hard to believe
when we all record the day He came
to cut our time in two?
Who else but Jesus showed us God made flesh,
the perfect Man who cannot be denied?
What other launched a life like His
to lift this world in light and love,
then cheated death to send us power from on high?
And now
when earth-men walk among the stars
I know that the Creator entered and walked my world.

Yes,
I believe in God
for I have watched the men who do not care to own Him;
I've seen, with sickness, the little lives wrapped up in foolish pride,
with faces marked for all the world to see their sin, who
(just as did I also)
run from holy light
or tried to hide their selfish lives beneath a thin shell of right.
Oh, stand them once by a man who walks with God — and see!
Yes,
I knew men who said there was no God;
but I listened carefully as they died
and I knew full well that they had lied.
Say I am too young to be so sure,
but I am old enough to feel and see my generation's agony,
its brokenness and barrenness,
to watch it waste with fear and war and strife.

Yet I have also seen from every tongue and tribe
like springing grain amid the sterile stone,
men come alive to live in love,
to share and care beneath Christ's cross…
…and if you saw their smiles within you'd know why
I believe in God.

The day that I stopped running, this God found me.
Empty, trembling,
shaken with guilt and shame I came.
In a way I cannot possibly draw with words
He loved me
forgave me
restored and released me…
Then gave me His own precious Name.

Say what you will, or mock if you must
but He met me then and there,
and put in my heart
a homesickness for heaven
and to be with Him forever.
And I have heard the still, small Voice
Of Love and Guidance and Eternal Truth…
And today I call Him Friend.
Oh yes:
I believe in God, - my Redeemer, Saviour, Friend.

~ A Poem & Testimony by Winkie Pratney, pastor & Bible Teacher ~


Winkie Pratney

The Wikipedia entry about Winkie Pratney.


Winkie Pratney's official website.





CHOOSE WISELY . . .


Early this morning I was meditating on the Word
and the LORD inspired this poem I would like to share . . .
I hope you enjoy it . . . Len

CHOOSE WISELY . . .
Time & toil & trouble & testing…
yet Life is exuberant, brimming !
with joy! and wonder! . . .
but where? why? & how? did this darkness descend
like a cloud and a claw in the soul.

somewhere in Time, … near the beginning of Time…
back, back, back where the seed first sprang forth:
we all fell for the greatest and most insidious of lies:
“turn away from The Creator! …
and be your own god.” !

THERE was Light & Love betrayed
and Man covered with cold & lonely darkness
of his own making.

Light Is Love
with freewill
willing to both understand
and obey
the invariable boundaries
of moral choice.
UNDERSTAND:
you are not, …
we are not GOD.
we are His guests & creation.


we are not robots, …
but we must not be rebels
who would defy & defile.
Choose wisely:
Choose very wisely

Whom
you will serve.

God is Yeshua!



My favorite song chorus: enjoy:

I have decided to follow Jesus:

  1. I have decided to follow Jesus;
    I have decided to follow Jesus;
    I have decided to follow Jesus;
    No turning back, no turning back.
  2. Though I may wonder, I still will follow;
    Though I may wonder, I still will follow;
    Though I may wonder, I still will follow;
    No turning back, no turning back.
  3. The world behind me, the cross before me;
    The world behind me, the cross before me;
    The world behind me, the cross before me;
    No turning back, no turning back.
  4. Though none go with me, still I will follow;
    Though none go with me, still I will follow;
    Though none go with me, still I will follow;
    No turning back, no turning back.
  5. Will you decide now to follow Jesus?
    Will you decide now to follow Jesus?
    Will you decide now to follow Jesus?
    No turning back, no turning back.

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