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Friday, December 10, 2010

Spiritual “warfare”!??? What’s THAT?
Spiritual “warfare”!???
What’s THAT?
SpiritualWar.jpg

 
Astrology, reading palms, new age psychic readings, clairvoyance and others spiritualistic practices abound. So what makes Christians think they have anything different?

 Really!
With the plethora of spiritual practices and artistry, what can a Christian have to offer this world?

Isn’t there enough of these fakes around at the moment? Are they not causing enough problems without adding to this mix of mumbo jumbo?

 The bible says this about spirits and warfare in that powerful text written by Paul, an ancient christian who was around with the guys who walked around with Jesus… 

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armour of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.  For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:10-12 NIV. 


So, we are told there are negative powers that organize themselves into hierarchies!

 So how does this Christian side of the spiritual scale weigh up against these others?

Is there even a need to consider this aspect in our daily lives. Can’t we get by easily simply by ignoring the negative and focusing on the good?
 

Let us consider this amazing amount of what I am going to call “junk” spirituality that is everywhere around us.

If you open a newspaper, the horoscopes are there! This is astrology (not astronomy the science, but astrology the spiritual omen predictive practice). The radio has programs devoted to spiritual activity, the TV has paranormal documentaries and series by the dozens! If you walk through the streets of your town, city or village you will see somewhere someone offering a "reading".

 Man has followed spirits since the beginning of time and today in the western world we try hard to say we don’t do it any more! 

What we have done is create another mystical religion by extending science past its boundaries to try and explain things it was never designed to explain.

Why?

Simply because we are spiritual beings and cannot really ignore this fact no matter how much rationale we bring to bear. It differentiates us from animals in many ways! I have yet to meet any animal who follows a spiritual practice!
 

Okay, if this is the case how can we be sure to deal with the RIGHT amount of spiritual activity and not go overboard and get deluded, starting to see demons in every shadow? (And believe me, there are many Christians who get hauled off the pathway of truth into demon shaking false religious practice by going overboard and starting "christian demon fighting cults" instead of sticking to the simplicity of what God wanted).

 This is a huge subject.
 
I even wrote a novel “Rift in Evil” to help teach people a little about the spiritual world in which we live
(PS: For those that read it, I do know that demons and angels are not exactly as I depict them in the book, but it’s a novel with an intent to teach general principles, not our bible Laughing ).
 

Here are some simple guidelines that I think help us keep tracking in the right way. 

Rule 1: God wants us to deal with ourselves first  and make the right decisions, think the right thoughts, rather than tell others what to do!

 Let’s start right where the worst of these influence start...in our own heads! God really wants us to clean up our thought life and let Holy Spirit give us joy, peace and love for everyone.

This means that we start here! Not with incantations and silly rules, but with a deep appreciation of God, and understanding of his love for us, and a willingness to make changes within ourselves that follow the greatest principle on earth, explained by Jesus.

i.e. Luke 10:27…He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’ ; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”

 Notice that "yourself" side of things.

That’s why we need to start here! Without this, we don’t love our neighbours right. Then before we love ourselves, we must love God. I guess that’s my comment on rule 1 of spiritual warfare.
 

Rule 2: “Warfare” is against spirits, not people!

 Let’s get it right! God wants us to deal with the evil in this world and LOVE people no matter WHAT they do!

This means if you have someone who says they are a witch, who actively practices prostitution and sorcery and they want to come into our homes and church, we should LOVE them! We shouldn’t be telling non-christian folk what to do! We should accept people the way God does…unconditionally with love.

 Now let’s put a bit of balance in there! We don’t want them damaging others we love so we do a few things to limit their ability to do harm.

We aim at the evil spirits (not the person). We pray! Yes it works! Then we love them so much that they don’t want to do anyone any harm. We forgive them for what they do wrong! We educate those who are more mature to love the person but not the evil spirits and we teach what is in the bible.

 

We have to know, that Christians, those who openly have acknowledge Jesus and accept the authority of his church are to be addressed and given teaching to help them understand bad practices, but non-Christians are NOT to be told what to do, and not do. 

All we are permitted to do is "witness" i.e. tell them what God has done for us!

 
We are ALL sinners(selfish, nasty, ignorant and stupid), so NONE of us deserves Gods love, but he gives it to us anyhow, and that other person is one of the people God loves despite anything they may or may not be doing wrong! 

Rule 3: Don’t try and sort out evil using the techniques that evil uses! 

Hey, forget those special prayers and word combinations!
 
Those are called incantations!
That’s what deluded people do to evoke spirits. We have a relationship with the God of the universe. Honest, deeply felt care and love expressed in the right way and simple requests for protection is what is needed.

Remember that God lives INSIDE us…Holy Spirit…so there is NO spirit that has the ability to beat us up!
 

Well I can go on, but time is up. I can suggest reading "Rift in Evil" (From Amazon and other online book stores) as a one way of seeing how we live move and breath in a spiritual world while living our everyday lives.

Spiritual warfare is important, but people are more important to God than these activities.
 

Let’s put love of God and others at the top of the list and respect others.

That way our “warfare” will be really effective, right?

Fri, December 10, 2010 | link          Comments

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Christians can be modern too!
 

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So often Christians are thought of as old fashioned, behind the times, boring people!

I loved the music these people at North Point put together. (click on "North Point" in the title to listen).
 
It’s a tremendous combination of spirit, innovations, co-ordination and plain old “wow” factor!
 

This is the Christian world I live in, but it seems to be distant for many.

Parents feverishly trying to stop their children from using facebook and other intrernet tools because of its dangers. They negate the fact that to live in a new world, one needs new world tools! 
 

Who today would use a stone axe to cut down a tree…nobody right?
 
Who today ould use a hand saw…very few right?
 
Who today would use a chain saw…most people right? 
 

We need to recognise tools for what they are, enablers, but with enablement and power comes danger. We need to train people on the correct ways of using them, not limit their access!
 

I feel sorrow when I hear people don’t allow their children to go on the internet!

Folks, sorry to say this,  but if you do that you are damaging their future!

If the young people of today cannot hone their skills with the new tools of life, their very livelihood will be compromised.
 

Yes! Children abuse the usage at times. That’s why we have controls and should use them. Just please don’t think gaming is a worthless activity! Do you know they get surgeons to play games to hone their skills with new equipment. It really provides keen hand eye co-ordination capabilities.
 Interaction through internet on games is building the workforce of tomorrow! Think about it!

So today I am pleading with people everywhere to enable our Christian youth, but wisely! We have no intention of exposing them to the horrors of evil in this world, but if we are to build strong spiritual warriors, we need people who can take on evil, know it, and destroy it!
 

Superceding and succeeding at technology to combat evil is  one real aspect of building skills we need to enable in our youth.

Our young people are going to meet more horror and evil at an earlier age than we ever thought possible.
 
We need to be alongside, not stopping it getting to them! We cannot stop progress, but we can take time to advise, help, take part and love them so that the only place they will go when hurt or needing advice is to the source of true help!
 Our loving Father in heaven!

Let’s enjoy technology!
Let’s enjoy our youth!
Let’s channel God’s love through into technology areas
so that we conquer these new horizons for Jesus and perhaps, just perhaps, someone we know is Christian will be the next Steve Jobs!

Think how good that will be for our world! 

Hey! Have a great day!
Thu, December 9, 2010 | link          Comments

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Strong silent types can speak loudly!
 
Strong silent types can speak loudly!
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He took Mary home as his wife. But he did not make love to her until after she gave birth to a son.
[1]


 These few words convey a situation clouded with conflict.

 We have a guy who has decided to get married to a woman who is pregnant, but incredibly, decides not to have sex until the baby is born!

 
Do we hear of that very often?

 Not likely!

 Today men are in general too selfish to want to marry an unwed mother that is pregnant, and if they want anything, it would be to have sex with her while it is safe.

 Many years ago I was rather appalled to hear how some of the men I worked with were hitting on an obviously pregnant woman who was married. She was beautiful, and maybe they considered this an opportunity to indulge, while at the same time keeping the risk to themselves low!

 
They didn’t care that both they, and the woman, were married!
 
Selfishness! One disease of evil in our human race!

 So, this emphasises that finding a man who had access to having sex with woman (who must have been fairly beautiful if he married her without this incentive) but who resisted this urge to have sex with her for her sake, is really different isn’t he? 

 My guess is that men have not changed in their urges over the years! (Perhaps society has perhaps put more controls on them, but they still basically look for sex, shelter and sports).

  Okay I am being a bit cynical, but being male, I have the right to say that we don’t totally disagree with that stereotype! For Christian men I add in "spirituality", but I guess that is not always the norm, right?

 So this was a different man! He was spiritual (angels visited him in dreams). Who was he?

 Well, we don’t know much about Joseph but in Matthew 1:16 it says his dad’s name was Jacob.

He
lived in Nazareth, a village which was in a middle to low income group area, and he was a carpenter.

That was a middle income livelihood and required skill so
he was obviously a fairly clear thinking guy, and probably strong and capable.

 The reason he is important is because of his illegitimate son!

 

He was Jesus’ foster father!

 Now that is something not everyone could say!

 
“My illegitimate son, is GOD!”

 We don’t think in those terms, but the fact that Jesus appeared illegitimate must have pervaded that small community!

Yet we never hear of Joseph complaining. The strain must have been considerable, but he took it with silently and with stalwart strength!

 He had quite a large family, as we later find out that Jesus had many siblings.

Matthew 13:55 says
Jesus had at least four brothers, "Isn't this the carpenter's son? Isn't his mother's name Mary? Aren't his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas?”

 It continues, “Aren't all his sisters with us?” so we know he had sisters as well! Since it says sisters, there must have been at least two sisters making at least six siblings!

 Since they were not wealthy, and so they would have known what it was like to work hard.  They would have to make do with less that what they wanted!

Joseph was there to provide and he did! But we find that by the time Jesus starts his ministry, Joseph is no longer mentioned. It is assumed he died before Jesus reached his thirties!

 This man, Joseph, who is pivotal to history makes way for God to become the forefront father of Jesus!

 Joseph has a critical place that speaks of strength and unusual love that is deep and quiet, and rarely considered by most of us.

 That’s why I thought we should consider him today… as a sign of respect for an extra-ordinary man whom we are all indebted to, and rarely even think of.

 Hey, have a great day! How about thanking God for the good men in your life!

 PS: I wrote some more on this subject last year in A virgin birth? You’ve got to be kidding!
PPS: If you enjoy my blog, please tell others…we might as well pass out our good news as well as keep it for ourselves, right J ?


[1] Matthew 1: 24-25

Wed, December 8, 2010 | link          Comments

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Ever had to sell a house? Tips for life and healthy living!
PaintCans.jpg
Staging the house, negotiating, allowing others into our haven – it is unpleasent isn’t it? But should it be?

 Currently my wife and I are in the process of preparing to sell our home.


 This should be a case of letting others in to see it, selling it and getting money right?

 Not really! Money goes out first! The first thing is the realtor says that we need to fix up the house and “modernise its colors and carpets”. (Our house was built by ourselves just 10 years ago). So that means we pay to have carpets pulled up and painters in to paint away. Then the light fittings are inadequate, so these are replaced.

Then they want the closets empties of all junk, and they consider our personal items junk!
 

The immediate reaction to this is – invasion of privacy – and I think many would agree this is. Soon we will have perfect strangers walking through our world investigating every nook and cranny of our living space.

 
When I think about my life as a Christian, I notice some parallels.

 
My life is meant to be an open book to be read by others at any time or place.
I should be so open to Holy Spirit, that no matter what happens and when, I should be totally happy for others to know what is going on.

 
I do try to live that way but it’s not easy! When we first allow God to start our life renovation it’s even more difficult. The cobwebs and personal junk is everywhere and wherever we look we see it!

It is great to get to that point that Paul, that ancient christian who's words still change the world was when he said in 2 Thesselonians 3:7
"For you yourselves know how you ought to follow our example."

Can we imagine being so right with God that we advise others to follow ourselves, because we follow Jesus so closely?

It's easy to do things wrong and we get warned against failing in this way by the ancient writers... 


In Ephesians 2 it says "As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient."

Fortunately God is not a malicious individual but a loving father. He doesn’t ask us to clean everything at once, only to have a priority and focus on the most important items. Paul continues in his address to those Ephesian people ... "But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved."

God only wants us to accept his great help, and then, only do what he points out for us to do...not everything!

 By directing ourselves to address the most important item or category of items we can enable ourselves to make progress and grow in faith and spiritual power.

We don’t get it clean overnight,
but soon our lives are in a state that we are reasonably comfortable having others look into it! The skeletons are forgiven and cleared and in their place, God brings light, life and love!

 
Soon we want to bring others into the bright cleanly painted interior because it is a great way to live and we want to share it.

 
That’s what I want to remember today. That the cleanup of our lives today, is the joy of friendship and love for eternity tomorrow!

 Have a great day!
Tue, December 7, 2010 | link          Comments

Monday, December 6, 2010

Where does evil come from?

Where does evil come from?
creationimagepicture.jpg

Bruxy Cavey says. . .

 
God knew WE would eventually choose against him.
And he knew HE would suffer the most for our choice.

2 Timothy 1:9; Revelation 13:8

The Bible never claims this is the best of all possible worlds.
Only that this is the best possible way to achieve the best possible world.[1]

 So what does this mean?

Grace was given us in Jesus before the beginning of time. God was preparing to bring the best out of our choices. He allowed this world of suffering to be created but simultaneously allowed himself to become the one who would suffer the worst. He did this to allow us to have a freely chosen intimacy with God.

 Think about grace! It is not needed in a perfect world! Think about forgiveness, another concept not needed in a perfect world.

 So to provide us with free choice, certain non perfect things needed to be created, but these enrich us above other celestial beings! We understand intimately concepts like grace and forgiveness that they could never understand.

 

But think of this. . .


 
  • God is creator of everything
  • Evil is something
  • So God created evil

 
This is the conclusion some people come to, right?

 Is evil a something that needs to be created directly?

  Not necessarily, as evil is merely the absence of good. So evil is not created, but occurs when good is created!

 Corruption of good is also evil! Think about loss of hearing, deafness. Deafness cannot exist apart from an ear. It is a damage to something created good.

 Evil is deprivation of some good that aught to be there!

  Rocks don’t hear but we don’t get upset about that do we?

 So let’s revisit our argument…

 
  • God is perfect
  • God creatures are perfect
  • These creatures have free thought
  • Some creatures choose evil
  • Therefore God created the potential of evil and we choose to make evil actual!
 

So when we look at evil we must understand it as the cumulative bad choices of humans throughout time!

 That begs the question, how have I made choices that partner with evil?

 Rather than pointing at others, we need to ask how we originate new evil.

 Evil came into being before the earth was created. The bible suggests that original sin of Satan was the only sin that had the potential to self generate because it had a blindness to its own presence. We can have awareness of sin but the sin of pride is something that is difficult to detect by the person who has it, right?

 That was Satans original sin, being so proud as to think he was better than God himself! Do you know anyone who has this same attitude?

 Pride is celebrating self. Do we do this ourselves now days? Can we detect it if we do it?

 Looking at  Genesis 1:31 we see all was good in creation in those ancient times when God walked with man, but in Genesis 2 we find that we as humans choose to eat from a tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Adam(the male of the species) was told to avoid the knowledge of good and evil, and Eve heard it from Adam(second hand), so perhaps that’s why the serpent approached Eve first. Perhaps because she didn’t hear from God directly, Eve was easier to deceive. Adam simply rebelled.

 Before they chose evil they had good and a choice that had yet to be made. Evil did not exist until the instance the wrong choice was made. Adam and Eve get exposed to evil that they create by disobeying God. In the instant they do this they establish evil.

 Their eyes get opened and suddenly they know they are naked! Something that was not important becomes a problem! We as humans immediately become protectionistic, mistrusting and wanting to hide reality of ourselves from others. We want to differentiate ourselves from others and hide things from each other! The downward spiral starts!

 Relationships change morally and physically! Moral evil is connected to natural evil, because we are more tied to creation than we understand today. So sin had the ability to corrode creation. Moral choices that are evil do corrupt nature! All of our sin is polluting our planet! We are continually adding to this. We contribute to a system of shame.

 See Mark 7:21-23. The human heart carries around this sin. Jeremiah 17:9 says the heart is deceitful. We should not “just follow our heart”.

 From inside ourselves comes the evil things and these are what damage us! To know the origin of evil, we need only look in a mirror!

 Confession in the New testament times is a community response to countering this evil. We have to be honest and open about our failures, confessing them to each other so we can be healed!

 I want to do this more every day. What about you?[2]


[2] Summarised and commented on by myself from Bruxy video content.(see URL)

Mon, December 6, 2010 | link          Comments


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Rift in Evil

By Ken X Briggs

  • Published: September, 2010
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This suspense thriller centers on Kiara, a beautiful young woman pursued by a murderous group of people, who relentlessly and ruthlessly hunt her and her sisters. Kiara has no idea why she is being targeted! When Kiara and her family turn to the law for help, this fails. Her pursuers’ powers reach deeply into the political and law enforcement world. Family support for her dwindles when they too have to flee her pursuers. Can Kiara escape the clutches of both the law and dishonest big business? With the media broadcasting that Kiara and friends are dangerous and subversive, can Kiara clear her name and bring her pursuers to justice?

 

 
  

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 RiftInEvil.gifThe town of Zinaville is dropped into a spiral of evil causing a young man and a beautiful but abused woman to launch into an investigation that unveils an evil conspiracy.

A horrific mining accident results in Joshua Robyn's father being killed. Joshua struggles both with himself and his townsfolk as he tries to make sense of an incomprehensible situation. Is it an accident or a murder? Why is there a seeming link to evil? Why is his work environment suddenly threatening? What is the conspiracy about and what are they trying to do? As action moves dramatically from exotic African grasslands to the heart of North America's cities, the plot unfolds and the pace quickens. Will there be time? Why is a beautiful abused young woman in the center of this plot?

Evil tendrils tighten on their lives and the interplay between the visible and invisible world shows opposing forces at work.

Will there be a rift in evil?

Will they be able to stop the evil in time?

 

 

 
Click here to order Rift in Evil (ebook or Paper available)
  • Published: September, 2010
  • Format: Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 208
  • Size: 6x9
  • ISBN: 9781450250894 

Available from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, iUniverse. Chapters

 
  
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