Friday, August 5, 2011

WORSHIP THE OMNIPOTENT, NOT THE IMPOTENT



16 Do not let yourselves be led away from the Lord to worship and serve other gods. DEUTERONOMY 11 tev
Idolatry promotes false worship. Just as water and oil do not mix, no one gets restored by mixing true worship with false worship.
1 The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. 2 Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. 1 TIMOTHY 4
Essentially this is the message of Commandment No. 2: “Wise up! Stop making God your No. 2 priority in life. Do away with self-worship. Stop praying to an idol. Do not rely on it to bless you. Do away with sorcery. Do away with fanaticism and materialism. Why? Because idolatry is of the devil. It’s a malpractice and a waste of time, effort and money. It does not benefit anyone at all. Better welcome God into your heart.”  
22 You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and His worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth. JOHN 4
Wise Up!
2 How long. O men, will you turn My glory into shame? How long will you love delusions and seek false gods? PSALM 4
8 You must not do as you have been doing. Until now you have been worshiping as you please. DEUTERONOMY 12 tev
4 We know that an idol can do nothing at all in the world and that there is no God but one. 5 For even if there are so-called gods—whether in heaven or on earth (as indeed there are many gods and many lords)— 6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Y’shua the Messiah, through whom all things came and through whom we live. 1 CORINTHIANS 8
What can be so difficult in making the shift when God Himself is there to help us?
8 It is written: Worship the Lord your God and serve Him only. LUKE 4
29 Hear, O Isra’el, the Lord our God! The Lord is one [echad, unique, incomparable, unrivaled, without equal or similitude]. MARK 12  
5 To whom will you compare Me or count Me equal? To whom will you liken Me that we may be compared? ISAIAH 46
34 Has any god ever dared to go and take for himself a people from another nation and make them as his own, as the Lord your God did for you in Egypt? Before your very eyes He used His great power and strength; He brought plagues and war, worked miracles and wonders, and caused terrifying things to happen. 35 The Lord has shown you this, to prove to you that He alone is God and that there is no other. 36 He let you hear His voice from heaven so He could instruct you; and here on earth He let you see His holy fire, and He spoke to you from it. 37 Because He loved your ancestors, He chose you, and by His great power He Himself brought you out of Egypt. 38 As you advanced, He drove out nations greater and more powerful than you, so that He might bring you in and give you their land, the land which still belongs to you. 39 So remember today and never forget: the Lord is God in heaven and on earth. There is no other. DEUTERONOMY 4 tev
6 The Lord brings death and makes alive; He brings down to the grave and raises up. 7 The Lord sends poverty and wealth; He humbles and He exalts. He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap; He seats them with princes and has them inherit a throne of honor. 1 SAMUEL 2
The name of God in the Old Testament is YHVH.                                               
10 [YHVH] is the true God, the living God, the everlasting King. JEREMIAH 10 cjb 
6 I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob. EXODUS 3
10 Before Me no other God was formed, nor will there be one after Me. ISAIAH 43
9 I am God and there is no other. I am God and there is no one like Me. ISAIAH 46
17 [YHVH] your God is the God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome… 21 He is your praise; He is your God, who performed for you those great and awesome wonders you saw with your own eyes. DEUTERONOMY 10 
The name of YHVH today is Y’shua.
5 The Messiah… is God overall. ROMANS 9
8 [He] is the same yesterday and today and forever. HEBREWS 13  


Friday, July 29, 2011

IS YOUR CHURCH DELIVERING YOU TO LUCIFER?




My friend invited me to his place and I saw in it graven images of different sizes and makes. When reminded that God detested them, my friend said, “God is not against these. God is against people worshiping these.”
An hour later his churchmate arrived, went straight to a graven image, knelt before it and prayed. 
Did you know that Eastern Orthodoxy and some Protestant churches keep graven images in their churches?
The fact is, God forbids graven images of any make (Exodus 20:4-6).  
§  Idols made of stone or cement are forbidden.
7 Do not make cast idols. EXODUS 34
1 Do not make idols or set up an image or a sacred stone for yourselves, and do not place a carved stone in your land to bow down before it. I am the Lord your God. LEVITICUS 26
§  Idols made of wood are forbidden.
21 Do not set up any wooden Asherah pole beside the altar you build to the Lord your God, 22 and do not erect a sacred stone, for these the Lord your God hates. DEUTERONOMY 16
§  Idols made of metals are forbidden.
23 Do not make any gods to be alongside Me; do not make for yourselves gods of silver or gods of gold. EXODUS 20
Catholicism says its graven image is that of God Incarnate. If that were so, from which historical record did it base the appearance of its graven image? For no reliable evidence or portrait is known to man that can accurately depict how Y’shua looked like.
Legend says the face Y’shua in the Last Supper painting of Leonardo Da Vinci was modeled after the face of a convicted criminal.
If the graven image is not an accurate depiction of Y’shua, then the claim it is that of God Incarnate is a lie. Habakkuk 2:18 asks, “Of what value is an image that teaches lies?”
Assuming for the sake of argument that the graven image were that of Y’shua, the next question is, what about the other graven images in the church? What is the justification for them?
The church has been making graven images, putting them in pedestals, and encouraging its members to kneel and bow down before them. In 787 ad it imposed the veneration of idols, in 375 ad the veneration of saints and angels, and in 431 ad the veneration of the Virgin Mary. In venerating the Virgin Mary, everyone is encouraged to pray the rosary (a disproportionate 53 prayers to “Holy Mary” and 6 to “our Father in heaven”); also, to pray the novena (a litany of petitions to the Blessed Mother and the saints).
Venerating the Blessed Mother, the saints and the angels, and encouraging people to pray to them, are a direct contravention of God’s instruction, to wit: 
10 Worship only God!  REVELATION 19 nlt
Matthew 6:9 instructs us to pray to our Father in Heaven. Pray to the Creator, not to a creation—this is the instruction. Y’shua would never have instructed anyone to pray to the Blessed Mother or the saints for obviously none of them made “the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water.”
7 Worship Him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water. REVELATION 14
The next question is, to whom are idol-hosting churches leading their churchgoers: God or Lucifer? Idol-hosting is spiritual adultery. Y’shua said, “Will you speak to King Herod with your back facing him? Certainly not! Yet men do pray to their Father in heaven while facing Lucifer.” (Gospel of Barnabas)
9 [Isra’el] committed adultery by worshiping stones and trees. JEREMIAH 3
30 The people of Judah have committed an evil thing. They have placed their idols, which I hate, in My temple and have defiled it… 19 Am I really the one they are hurting? No, they are hurting themselves and bringing shame on themselves. JEREMIAH 7
Death to Idolaters?
How should a loving husband feel when he sees someone ravishing his wife? Or when he sees his wife enjoying sex with his enemy? We ask because in the Philippines unscrupulous Christians build altars to Lucifer and sacrifice blood. They offer food, drink and tobacco to the dead and anitos (folk gods), and violate Exodus 23:13. In the Cordillera, Catholic priests could be seen officiating at caniao rituals (inculturization, they say).
20 The sacrifices of pagans that are offered to idols are offered to demons, not God; and I do not want you to be participants with demons. 21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of demons… 23 Are we trying to arouse the Lord’s jealousy? 1 CORINTHIANS 10
13 Do I eat the flesh of bulls or drink the blood of goats? PSALM 50 
22 To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. 1 SAMUEL 15
Some churches teach that idolaters must be put to death. That is Old Testament practice; don’t do it.
2 If a man or woman living among you. 3 …has worshipped other gods, bowing down to them or to the sun or the moon or the stars of the sky 4 …and it has been proved that this detestable thing has been done in Isra’el, 5 take the man or woman who has done this evil deed to your city gate and stone that person to death. DEUTERONOMY 17
20 Whoever sacrifices to any god other than the Lord must be destroyed… 18 Do not allow a sorceress to live. EXODUS 22
27 A man or woman who is a medium or spiritist among you must be put to death. You are to stone them; their blood will be on their own heads. LEVITICUS 20
5 Put to death any interpreters of dreams or prophets that tell you to rebel against the Lord… Such people are evil and are trying to lead you away from the life that the Lord has commanded you to live. They must be put to death in order to rid yourselves of this evil. 6 Even if your brother or your son or your daughter or the wife you love or your closest friend may secretly encourage you to worship other gods… 8 Do not let any of them persuade you; do not even listen to them. Show them no pity, and do not protect them. 9 Kill them!  DEUTERONOMY 13
The New Covenant has deferred the practice of stoning idolaters to death.
7 If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at the adulterous woman. JOHN 8
“Adulterous woman” is a reference to spouse-stealers; also, a veiled reference to spiritual adulterers, which include the idolaters. John 8:7 is saying inasmuch as all of us are sin-bearers (Ecclesiastes 7:20), no one among us is qualified to throw the first stone. Only the Son of Man is.
15 He had the same testings we do, yet He did not sin. HEBREWS 4 nlt
Fortunately for us, Y’shua has chosen to sit on His throne of grace, not on His throne of judgment. Y’shua is LOVE. He is not in a hurry to put anyone to death. He wants all sin-bearers to be restored, not condemned.
9 He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 PETER 3
God’s instruction is to do away with idolatry—the practice, not the idolater.
6 This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Repent! Turn from your idols and renounce all your detestable practices! EZEKIEL 14
3 If you are returning to the Lord with all your heart, then rid yourselves of the foreign gods and the Ashtoreths and commit yourselves to the Lord and serve Him only, and He will deliver you out of the Philistinians. 1 SAMUEL 7
30 I will judge you, each one according to his ways… Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall. 31 Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. 32 For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live! EZEKIEL 18   
18 Make sure there is no man or woman, clan or tribe among you today whose heart turns away from the Lord our God to go and worship the gods… Make sure there is no root among you that produces such bitter poison. DEUTERONOMY 2
What if the idolater does not heed God’s call?
Still, you may destroy his altar and church house (Numbers 33:52, Exodus 23:24, Deuteronomy 7:25-26 and 12:2-3) but do not touch his person. It is not for us to pass judgment on him. Honor God’s decision to give him time to be enlightened and to mend his ways.
At the Day of Judgment, the dead that does not mend his ways will be sent to his Second Death (Revelation 21:8) in accordance with his own choosing.
10 Those who hate the Lord your God He will repay to their face by destruction. The Lord your God will not be slow to repay to their face those who hate Him. DEUTERONOMY 7
16 They made God jealous with their foreign gods and angered Him with their detestable idols. 17 They sacrificed to demons, which are not God—gods they had not known, gods that recently appeared, and gods your fathers [ancestors] did not fear. 18 You deserted the Rock, who fathered you; you forgot the God who gave you birth… 22 A fire has been kindled by My wrath; one that burns to the realm of death below. It will devour the earth and its harvests and set afire the foundations of the mountains. DEUTERONOMY 32 
4 I will stretch out My hand against Judah and against all who live in Jerusalem. I will cut off from this place every remnant of Ba’al [the god of Sidon], the names of the pagan and the idolatrous priests— 5 those who bow down on the roofs to worship the starry host, those who bow down and swear by the Lord and who also swear by Molech [the god of Ammonites that required child sacrifices], 6 those who turn back from following the Lord and neither seek the Lord nor inquire of Him. ZEPHANIAH 1




Friday, July 22, 2011

THE YOUNG ABRAHAM’S STORY


Y’shua sat before His disciples one day and He said to them, “Let me tell you an interesting story on Abraham when he was young.
“Abram, as Abraham was called then, was seven years old when he began to seek God. His father’s occupation was to fashion wooden gods. One day he engaged his father Terah in a conversation. Abram asked, ‘Father, you made me and your father made you. So, who made the first man?’ The father answered, ‘The gods made the first man.’
“Then he asked, ‘Father, how many gods are there?’ His father answered, ‘They are infinite in number.’
“Abram asked, ‘Father, if I served one god, the other gods might become jealous and think evil of me. Should there be fighting between my god and the other gods, and my god got killed, it would be certain that I would be killed too. What must I do?’ The old man laughed and said, ‘Do not be afraid, my son, for no god makes war. There must be a thousand gods in the temple, including the great Ba’al. I am near the age of 70 yet I have not seen or heard of a god smiting another.’
“Abram said, ‘Father, what are gods like?’ The father answered, ‘You little fool! Everyday I make a god for a living and you do not know how gods look like. This one is made of palm wood; that one is made of olive; the little one over there is made of ivory.  See how fine it is, as if it were alive? It lacks only breath.’
“Then he said, ‘So, father, the gods are without breath? How then can they give breath? If they have no life, how can they give life? Certainly these are not God.’ The old man became angry, saying, ‘If you were of age to understand your words, I would have broken your head with this axe!’
“Abram protested, saying, ‘But father, how can the gods create the first man if there was no man in the beginning to make them? And if God were made of wood, which I doubt, then is it not a sin to burn wood? Tell me, father, is not gratitude one of God’s virtues? With the many gods you have made so far, how come they do not make you a rich or powerful man?’
“The father became silent, not expecting such wisdom from a boy so young. Abram continued, saying, ‘Father, was the world in the beginning without men?’ The father answered, ‘Yes, why do you ask?’
“Abram said, ‘Because I am curious who made the first god.’ The old man said, ‘Now go and play outside. Leave me to finish this god. When you get hungry, you will desire bread, not words.’
“Abram said, ‘Okay, father, but I am telling you, you have a fine god there who cannot defend himself!’ The father answered, ‘You little fool! The whole world says it is a god and you say it is not?’
“Time passed and Abram came to the age of 12. The father came to him and said, ‘Son, tomorrow is the festival of gods. I will go to the temple and bear a present to my god, the great Ba’al. Come with me, so you can choose a god for yourself, now that you have come of age.’
“Abram went with his father with an axe concealed under his tunic, and once inside the temple, Abram hid behind an idol. When everyone had left and the temple was closed, he took his axe and cut off all the feet of the idols except that of Ba’al, at whose feet he placed the axe.
“When the temple was opened the next day, the people saw the feet of their gods broken to pieces. At this they cried out, ‘Quickly, let us search for the man who killed our gods!’ Abram said, ‘You fools! Can a man kill a god? It was the great Ba’al that killed the other gods! See the axe at his feet? Certainly he is a jealous god!’
“But then Abram’s father came looking for him; and he recognized the axe. He cried out, ‘It was my traitor son who killed our gods! This axe is mine!’
“The people became furious. They tied Abram’s hands and feet. Then they gathered enough firewood, lit it, and threw him on top of it to burn. It was at this time that an angel of God came and he commanded the fire not to burn Abram. The fire blazed with great fury that it burned some of those who threw Abram into the fire; and this caused a commotion. But Abram was not hurt; instead, he found himself being freed and carried to safety by an unseen force; and so he escaped. 
“Whenever he recalled the incident, Abram would say to himself, ‘There must be a living God.’
“One day as he sat meditating on this, he heard his name being called. Three times a voice called out his name but when he turned to see who it was, he found no one. So he asked, ‘Who is calling me?’
“The angel Gabriel came to him, saying, ‘Do not be afraid, Abram. I am an angel of God, the One who freed you from the fire. I am sent to relay to you this message from God: “Leave your country, your people, and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you.”   
“Abram made a vow, saying, ‘Your God will be my God and my Master. All His commands I will obey. But petition Him to guard me, so that no other God may hurt me.’ And it was then that the Father in heaven said to Abram, ‘I alone am God.’” (cf. Gospel of Barnabas, chapters 26-28) 


Friday, July 15, 2011

THE LOSER IN US CALLED IDOL-WORSHIPER





God says in Exodus 20:3: “You shall not bow down to idols or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God.” Jealous does not imply that God gets insecure or envious of gods. God forbids idolatry (actually God hates it, to Him it is an abomination) because He is zealous for our well-being.  
God forbids idolatry of graven images because it is an exercise in futility.
3 For the customs of the people are worthless; they cut a tree out of the forest, and a craftsman shapes it with his chisel. 4 They adorn it with silver and gold. They fasten it with hammer and nails so it will not totter. 5 Like scarecrows in a melon patch, their idols cannot speak; they must be carried because they cannot walk. Do not fear them; they can do no harm, nor can they do any good. JEREMIAH 10
6 They bow down and worship it. 7 They lift it to their shoulders and carry it; they set it up in its place, and there it stands. From that spot it cannot move. Though one cries out to it, it does not answer; it cannot save him from his troubles. ISAIAH 46 
19 Woe to him who says to wood “Come to life!” or to lifeless stone “Wake up!” Can it give guidance? …There is no breath in it. HABAKKUK 2
14 Those who make idols are disillusioned, because the gods they make are false and lifeless. 15 They are worthless and should be despised; they will be destroyed when the Lord comes to deal with them. JEREMIAH 10 tev
16 [But God] who is the Portion of Jacob is not like these [gods], for He is the Maker of all things, including Isra’el, the tribe of His inheritance—[Adonai-Tzava’ot] is His name… 12 God made the earth by His power, founded the world by His wisdom, stretched out the heavens by His understanding. JEREMIAH 10
God forbids idolatry of graven images because it is dishonest.
20 Can people make their own God? No, if they did, it would not really be God. JEREMIAH 16 tev
The creation capable of creating another Creator or one that can outdo the Creator? That of course is an impossibility and a false teaching.
Idolmakers portray God in three-dimensional human forms. That is dishonesty. Some idolmakers portray God in animal forms. That is dishonesty made even worse.
21 God is spirit. JOHN 4
39 A [spirit] has no flesh and bones. LUKE 24
Idolmakers act as if they had seen God and they are making a representation of what they had seen. That is dishonesty. The fact that the “gods” they portray have different faces is enough proof that they had not seen God.
31 No one has seen Him, no one can describe Him. SIRACH 43
15 [Moses said to the Israelites] You saw no form of any kind the day the Lord spoke to you at Horeb out of the fire. Therefore, watch yourselves very carefully, 16 so that you do not become corrupt and make for yourselves an idol, an image of any shape, whether formed like a man or a woman, 17 or like any animal on earth or any bird that flies in the air, or like any creature that moves along the ground or any fish in the waters below. DEUTERONOMY 4
The popular belief is that the prophet Moses had seen God. It is a false belief. He saw “the form of God” but not the face of God (Numbers 12:8).
19 [God said to him,] I will cause all My goodness to pass before you, and in your presence I will pronounce the name of Adonai. 20 But My face you cannot see, because a human being cannot look at Me and remain alive. 23 …You will see My back, but My face is not to be seen. EXODUS 33 cjb
46 No one has seen the Father except the One who is from God; only He has seen the Father. JOHN 6
The question now is, if nobody has seen the face of God, to whom belongs the face in the idols? And if the face does not belong to God, why do people look at it while praying?
Idolmakers portray gods and goddesses as God. They portray dragons, snakes, crocodiles and cows as God. They portray God as half-man, half-animal. They portray Confucius and Buddha as God. They are making us believe in polytheism, that there is more than one God. That of course is a false teaching. There is only one God.
Idolatry makes us believe that behind the graven images are godly spirits that hear petitions and grant them. That of course is another false teaching.
14 They are spirits of demons performing miraculous signs. REVELATION 16
Lucifer even goes to the extent of making us believe that the Spirit of God is hearing the petitions and granting them. That is not true. The truth is, we are being manipulated to become devil-dependent.
9 The work of Lucifer is displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders 10 and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refuse to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness. 2 THESSALONIANS 2
God is permitting the delusion to test us.
3 The Lord your God is testing you to find out whether you love Him with all your heart and with all your soul. 4 It is the Lord your God you must follow, and Him you must revere. Keep His commandments and obey Him. Serve Him, and hold fast to Him. DEUTERONOMY 13
Where the idols are, that’s where to find God—this is another false teaching. Don’t buy it. Idols are an abomination to God. It is most unlikely that God will stay in idol-hosting places.
Also, don’t believe that God can be worshiped “only” at idol-hosting chapels and church houses. God is omnipresent. He can be worshiped wherever we are. Chapels and church houses are not really a requirement for worship.
Lucifer is making us look for God outside of ourselves, not within us. Don’t do that. Our spirits are our synagogues. It is where God hopes to dwell. He is waiting for us to sweep it and elevate it into a “temple” worthy of the King of kings. He is waiting for us to welcome Him into it—for us to be reunited with Him and be in constant communion and fellowship with Him. This is the kind of worship God seeks.
21 Y’shua declared, “Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this [Samaritan] mountain nor in Jerusalem. 23 …a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. JOHN 4
God forbids idolatry of graven images because it hampers our blessings. It prevents us from enjoying His LOVE.
15 Cursed is the man who carves an image or casts an idol—a thing detestable [repulsive, loathsome] to the Lord, the work of the craftsman’s hand—and sets it up secretly [to worship it]. DEUTERONOMY 27
Why is our nation going through a lot of poverty, reversals and pain?
Because the nation is cursed! God blesses everybody but the cursed is blessed less and made to suffer more.
Why is the nation cursed?
Because God has spoken against idolatry and yet religious images not of God continue to adorn our homes, workplaces, schools, churches, stores, hospitals and government offices. People are enticed to light candles to them and offer flowers and garlands to them. People make the sign of the cross and bow before them. People embrace them, wipe them with their handkerchiefs, make supplications to them, and shed tears before them.
Our people are pursuing an ungodly tradition blindly, without question. Lucifer loves it!
22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. ROMANS 1
An estimated 1.3 million devotees joined in the Jan. 9, 2008-procession of the Black Nazarene in Quiapo, Manila. Did it please God? If yes, why is it that two people died and 46 were wounded during the procession? The following year, in another procession, the life-size icon of the Virgin Mary tumbled and fell on a young girl in Tondo, Manila. The girl died. Her mother was seen on TV asking why the tragic accident should happen to them. In 2010, two male devotees died and 400 people were injured at the Black Nazarene-procession in Quiapo.
The sooner we get the message, the better for the nation. God is not pleased with the idolatry. It does not benefit us to stay under the curse. This explains why the destruction of graven images and the churches that shelter them has been decreed (Numbers 33:52).
10 If you keep My commands, you shall abide in My love. JOHN 15
God’s True Form
Idolatry of graven images projects a distorted notion of God. Let us have a clear idea of how God really looks like:
§  The vision of the prophet Ezekiel
26 Above the expanse over [the heads of the four living creatures] was what looked like a throne of sapphire, and high above on the throne was a figure like that of a man. 27 I saw that from what appeared to be His waist up He looked like glowing metal, as if full of fire, and that from there [what appeared to be His waist] down He looked like fire; and brilliant light surrounded Him. 28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the radiance around Him. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. EZEKIEL 1
§  The vision at the Exodus
9 Moses and Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, and the seventy elders of Isra’el went up 10 and saw the God of Isra’el. Under His feet was something like a pavement made of sapphire, clear as the sky itself… 17 To the Israelites the glory of the Lord looked like a consuming fire on top of the mountain. EXODUS 24
21 By day the Lord went ahead of the Israelites in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light; so they could travel by day or night. EXODUS 13
§  The vision of the apostle John who had an out-of-body experience and met with God in His heavenly kingdom.
13 ...and among the lampstands was someone like a Son of Man, dressed in a robe reaching down to His feet, and with a golden sash around His chest. 14 His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes were like blazing fire. 15 His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and His voice was like the sound of rushing waters. 16 In His right hand He held seven stars, and out of His mouth came a sharp double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance. REVELATION 1
More or less this is the picture: God is a spirit with a form like that of a man. The form has no tangible body. In lieu of a physical body is an intangible body “full of fire” (Ezekiel 1:27, Exodus 24:19). The fire is not of color yellow or blue but white. The body emits an aura of light whose radiance contains “all the colors of the rainbow” (Ezekiel 1:28).
The prophet Daniel, who had a vision of God, described God’s clothing “as white as snow; the hair of His head was white like wool” (Daniel 7:9). A river of fire pours out, flowing from His presence (Daniel 7:10 nlt).
5 God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all. 1 JOHN 1
2 He wraps Himself in light as with a garment. PSALM 104 
11 The Lord God is a sun. PSALM 84
19 The eyes of the Lord are 10,000 times brighter than the sun. ECCLESIASTICUS 23
17 God [is the] Creator of all light, and He shines forever without change or shadow. JAMES 1 tlb
God has a throne of sapphire (Ezekiel 1:26). It sits on a “pavement made of sapphire, clear as the sky itself” (Exodus 24:9). A rainbow, resembling an emerald, encircled the throne (Revelation 4:3). God and His throne and the pavement of sapphire all seem to be carried by a fog or cloud. 
9 The Lord said to Moses, “I am going to come to you in a dense cloud.” EXODUS 19
Scripture’s depiction of God is no different to what the apostles saw of Y’shua at the transfiguration. His face shone like the sun and His clothes became white as the light (Matthew 17:2)—bright as a flash of lightning (Luke 9:29).
“I am the Light” said Y’shua in John 9:5. Saul of Tarsus had a glimpse of the light and it made him blind (Acts 9:9).
16 (God) lives in an unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. 1 TIMOTHY 6
What are we saying all along? We are saying the likeness of God as biblically described does not resemble the idols being peddled to man.





Friday, July 8, 2011

THE LOSER IN US WHO RELIES ON SORCERY






 Achieving our goals by relying on demonic power is sorcery. It is idolatry.
Fortune-telling, divination, love potions (charmers), amulets, Twilight, Harry Potter, Halloween, lucky charms, feng shui, sun and moon worship—these things look harmless yet they are some of Lucifer’s tools in attracting people into sorcery.
Love potions promise instant LOVE-relationships, that whoever gets a taste of it will be strongly attracted and submissive to the giver.
Amulets promise lightning-speed agility, invisibility, and invincibility to bullets and knives.
Fortune-telling (astrology, horoscopes, card-reading, palmistry, ouija board) promises instant answers to questions—even of events yet to come.
Feng shui and lucky charms promise instant good luck.
Harry Potter opens our eyes to the occult world. It romanticizes witchcraft, voodoo and black magic, and gives them an aura of gentle fun. It makes us crave to have extrasensory powers; to learn about witchcraft and give it a try.
The promises of sorcery will likely not come true at all and will likely disappoint those who put their faith in them, but Lucifer’s purpose—which is, to defile them and to make their minds receptive to demonic power—will be achieved. Condition the mind and control the person: this is his ploy. This explains why we are called to stir away from using Lucifer’s tools.  






            26 You must not use… fortune-telling or witchcraft. LEVITICUS 19 tlb

10 Let no one be found among you who… practices sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, 11 or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or [a necromancer] who consults the dead. 12 Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord. DEUTERONOMY 18
9 Do not listen to your [false] prophets or to those who claim they can predict the future, either by dreams or by calling up the spirits of the dead or by magic. JEREMIAH 27 tev
5 Dreams, divinations, and omens are all nonsense. You see in them only what you want to see. 6 Unless the Most High has sent you the dream, pay no attention to it. 7 Dreams have misled many people; they put their faith in them only to be disappointed. SIRACH 34
31 Do not turn to mediums or seek out spiritists, for you will be defiled by them. LEVITICUS 19
6 I will set My face against the person who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute himself by following them, and I will cut him off from his people. LEVITICUS 20
1 Do not cut yourselves or shave the front of your heads for the dead, 2 for you are a holy people to the Lord your God. DEUTERONOMY 14 
28 Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo on yourselves. LEVITICUS 19
19 And when you look up to the sky and see the sun, the moon and the stars—all the heavenly array—do not be tempted into bowing down to them and worshiping things the Lord has apportioned to all the nations under heaven. DEUTERONOMY 4
2 Things that cause people to sin are bound to come, but woe [curse] to that person through whom they come. It would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a millstone tied around his neck than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin. LUKE 17




Friday, July 1, 2011

THE LOSER IN US CALLED OBSESSED



Fanaticism
Obsession is idolatry and fanaticism is one of its forms. Fanaticism is excessive devotion to and or involvement in a person or group (eg. political, business, religious, sports or musical group). 
In Japan it is said that when the sacho (corporate head) says a thing is white, everyone in the corporate downline would say it’s white, even if the thing is black. Japanese custom calls it corporate loyalty, but our book calls it corporate fanaticism. It is no different to the fable of an emperor who had believed he was clothed well, and his constituency had affirmed it, until a child shouted, “But the emperor was naked!”  
Fanaticism is bad because it teaches us to pursue and promote an activity or cause independent of God. “Do not commit murder” says God for example, yet war fanatics go out to kill and be killed not because of self-defense. Spies and commanders commit suicide to avoid torture and revealing secrets under interrogation. Japanese warrior-pilots launched suicidal kamikaze attacks on the American navy fleet in the Pacific rather than accept defeat and go home to their families. What many consider heroism can be plain old fanaticism.
The fanatic displays very strict standards and little tolerance for contrary ideas or opinions. Merriam-Webster described him as extravagant in opinions; ultra; unreasonable; excessively enthusiastic; often uncritical devotion. Harriet Stowe said the fanatic is governed rather by imagination than by judgment. George Santayana defines fanaticism as "redoubling your effort when you have forgotten your aim." Winston Churchill said, "A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject." The fanatic’s behavior violates prevailing social norms. The subject of his obsession may be "normal", such as an interest in religion or politics, but the scale of his involvement, devotion, or obsession with the activity or cause is abnormal or disproportionate. (Wikipedia)
Its Roots. How do fanatics come to be? The answer is, through deception combined with their reckless approval of, and participation in, an activity or cause. They gravitate to it because its truths and or evangelists are charismatic, or because someone they idolized endorsed it to them. Either that or they gravitate to it without checking the character of its evangelists or validating its “truths.”
Next, they are assigned to small circles and indoctrinated by cell leaders of acceptable leadership qualities. Bonding ensues and affiliation with the movement firmed up. Then they are introduced to bigger circles and given “trust” responsibilities. Intra-organizational competition and peer pressure are applied for them to deliver. Those who deliver are publicly esteemed and rewarded.
Finally, the core leadership welcomes them to its elite circle and turns them into its hardliners and apologists. They are given higher responsibilities, with prayer that they “would not fail.”
Religious Fanaticism. Because of religious fanaticism, the world witnessed large-scale punishment, violence and death (eg. the Crusades, the Inquisition, the anti-Semitic movements, mass murder-suicides). The Sept. 11, 2001-suicide attack of al-Qaeda (Muslim jihad extremists) brought down the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City and the loss of no less than 2,000 lives. Over 900 Peoples Temple members of Jim Jones committed mass murder-suicides on Nov. 18, 1978 in Jonestown, Guyana. And there was the case of the Ordre du Temple Solaire.
Still another case was the mass suicide of 39 members of Heaven’s Gate in a hilltop mansion near San Diego, California, in 1997. As with other New Age faiths, the cult leaders, Marshall Applewhite and Bonnie Nettles, combined Christian doctrine (particularly the ideas of salvation and apocalypse) with the concept of evolutionary advancement and travel to other worlds and dimensions. The members believed that the planet was about to be recycled (wiped clean, refurbished and rejuvenated), and that the only chance to survive was to leave it immediately. The group's end coincided with the appearance of Comet Hale-Bopp in 1997. They believed that an alien spaceship was following in the tail of the comet. Killing themselves was necessary so their souls could exit their human vessels and go on a journey aboard the spaceship. (Wikipedia)
There was the case of 778 deaths of members of the Ugandan group Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments of God, on March 17, 2000. The movement was a breakaway sect from the Roman Catholic Church. Its founders, Credonia Mwerinde and Joseph Kibweteere, claimed that they had visions of the Virgin Mary. Again, the community was knitted through false religious teachings. The leaders declared that the apocalypse would occur in the year 2000. The cult members were also taught that the Virgin Mary had a special role in the end, and that she communicated with their leadership. They held themselves akin to Noah's Ark, a ship of righteousness in a sea of depravity. The movement developed a hierarchy of visionaries, topped by Mwerinde. They had Catholic graven images placed prominently and defrocked Catholic Church priests and nuns in its leadership. The members perished in a devastating fire, and a series of poisonings and killings, that were either a cult suicide or mass murder orchestrated by leaders of the group after their predictions of the apocalypse failed to pass. (Wikipedia)







Materialism
Materialism is another form of obsession. Encarta defines it as
1.       PHILOSOPHY theory of the physical: the theory that physical matter is the only reality and that psychological states such as emotions, reason, thought, and desire will eventually be explained as physical functions  
2.       focus on possessions: devotion to material wealth and possessions at the expense of spiritual or intellectual values
Materialism is the desire (Webster says “immoderate desire”) to have or keep something or someone so badly.     
“Many people are driven by it. The desire to acquire becomes the whole goal of their lives. This drive to always want more is based on the misconceptions that having more will make them more happy, more important, and more secure, but all three ideas are untrue,” said Rick Warren. (Purpose-Driven Life, p. 29)
Materialism coupled with insecurity makes men greedy and avaricious, lacking in contentment. Insecurity is lack of trust that God could and would satisfy their need or desire.
Materialism makes us forget of our need to be righteous. It eggs us to covet, lie, steal, quarrel, kill… to compromise with the devil… to deceive and be deceived… to prioritize material gain over soul health and growth.
A local politician observed that Filipinos are generally intelligent but materialism is making them go loco. Materialism is the cause for the infamous Abu Sayyaf kidnappings, why corruption is rampant in Business and Government, why gambling and drug-pushing thrive into multibillion-peso trades, why men and women (even boys and girls) prostitute themselves, why many are enticed by the material rewards of converting into Islam instead of its highly commendable principles.
Materialism teaches us to value the creation (the visible) above the Creator (the Invisible).  It makes us see the woman, but not her Creator; the gift, not the Giver. It makes us spend more time in fixing and dressing our houses and cars— finding more pleasure, fulfillment and security in them—than with God. It makes us believe that success in life should be measured in terms of the number of cars and houses one has owned; the number and quality of lovers, kissed and embraced; the number of foreign places, visited; the luxuries and comforts, enjoyed; the fine food and drinks, savored; and the amount of money and jewelry, kept.    
One face of materialism is love of money.
5 Keep your lives free from the love of money, and be contented with what you have, because God said, Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you. HEBREWS 13
5 No one who loves money can be judged innocent [sin-free]. SIRACH 31
9 People who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows. 1 TIMOTHY 6 nlt
Who among us has mastered money? It is he who walks away from money every time it threatens to compromise his love-relationship with God.
Who is mastered by love of money? It is he who walks away from God (as the rich man did in Matthew 19:16-24) when his wealth or source of income is threatened. It is he whose heart is plagued with fear of loss and fear of less. 
23 Y’shua looked around and said to His disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God.” 24 The disciples were amazed at His words. But Y’shua said again, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a gamla [hawser] to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” MARK 10
Because of materialism, we go for gains which we will eventually lose, not for gains which we will permanently keep. We are rising to be a “something-for-nothing generation.” (Find Real Happiness, p. 44)
Because of materialism, we want to be happy animals rather than be blessed children of God. (The Bondage Breaker, p. 41)
11 But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of eternal life to which you were called… 17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life. 1 TIMOTHY 6
Say No to Obsession
Y’shua after withdrawing into a desert cave of Tiro, near Jordan, called His disciples—the Seventy-Two and the Twelve—and He said to them, “If a part of a house other than its foundation gives way, the house will need only minor repair. But if its foundation gives way, the whole house falls down in ruin. Those who put their faith in God are like to a house with solid foundation. But those who put their faith in a false god are like to a house that will fall down in ruin, for its weak foundation will give way. This explains why idolatry, which deprives man of his true God, is the greatest sin.
“That which a man loves so much, enough to forsake God and everything else, is his god. For a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him.
“The drunkard is guilty of idolatry for wine is his god. The fornicator and the adulterer are guilty of idolatry for the flesh is their god. The glutton is guilty of idolatry for food is his god. Anyone who makes god of his personal talent or material possession is guilty of idolatry of earthly riches. Anyone who loves flesh and blood more than he loves God is an idolater. I tell you the truth, whoever puts his love and hope in a false god will suffer for it.    
“In the time of (the prophet) Jeremiah, the people had forgotten God and boasted of their temple, for there was nothing like it in the world. So God stirred the anger of (the Babylonian king) Nebuchadnezzar, caused him to seize Jerusalem and burn it, along with it the temple, so that things held sacred were trodden by infidels.
“Abraham had loved his son Isaac a little more than what was right and so to take away this wrong out of his heart, God commanded him to slay his son.
“David had loved his son Absalom more than what was right so God permitted Absalom to rebel against him and to be slain by Joab. Absalom had loved his hair above all things and so it was used as a rope to hang him.
“(The prophet) Job had loved his seven sons and three daughters more than what was right. One day he lost them all, along with his earthly riches.
“(The patriarch) Jacob had loved his son Joseph more than his other sons so God caused Joseph to be sold. His sons even deceived him, making him believe that the beasts had devoured Joseph.
“He who loves a person more than his heavenly Father loves the provision more than the Provider.
26 If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters—yes, even his own life—he cannot be My disciple. LUKE 14
“I tell you, love God above all. Detach yourselves from every attachment that hinders love of God. Your Father’s gifts are not meant to be gods; they are given to further your soul growth on earth.
“Which is greater: the Giver or the gift? I tell you, treasure the Giver. Do not yield to the illusion that you will stay in this world forever and keep your gifts with you. You are pilgrims, born naked, and naked shall you depart from this world.” (cf. Gospel of Barnabas, chapters 33 and 99)
St. Theresa of Avila wrote, “It will be of great help towards perfection if we constantly keep in our thoughts the vanity of all things and the rapidity with which they pass away, so that we may withdraw our affections from things which are so trivial and fix them upon that which will never come to an end. It will have the effect of greatly fortifying the soul.” (The Way to Perfection)
Say Yes to LOVE
Obsession is often mistaken for LOVE. What is the difference between them? Obsession forces its way to have its object and pays whatever the price just so it can keep, protect and “love” its object, even for a brief moment. On the other hand, LOVE honors and respects the human freewill. It does not demand its own way (1 Corinthians 13:4) but waits to be accepted—and accepts it when its offering is not reciprocated.