A Royal & Holy Unification

12004112_939608079428713_5356839840401561566_n

Dedicated to Cassandra J.H.

 

A King only becomes a King when he loves his Queen.

A Queen becomes Queen when she knows the King of all Kings.

So establish her that throne and she will make it a home.

Let her uniqueness standout and watch the Lord give her wings.

Real love isn’t found, it’s built on a real foundation.

Don’t hold her down, but elevate her coronation.

She needs to be embraced but she also needs to fly.

So don’t hold her back but paint her a beautiful sky.

There’s eagles, there’s butterflies, and even honey bees.

But there’s no limits to a daughter’s eternity.

Liberation, transformation, and dedication.

But there’s no limits to a daughter’s glorification.

Written this short awe powerful poem of a twofold picture reflecting one another.

  1. Christ and the Church.
  2. A King and a Queen.

Buy You’re Copy of (A Royal & Holy Unification)

Purchase's of this poem helps support my website and raises money for charitable events.

$3.00

Enriching Friendships

Strong friendships are one of the greatest joys of life. However, some people are overly self-conscious and shy away from those who could be their friends. Some open themselves up to only a small circle of friends. Some put their friends through a lot of difficulty and pain. And some are outgoing toward everyone, but never cultivate any close relationships.

 

How can you learn to develop strong, healthy friendships? God’s Word has particularly deep insight concerning human relationships. And it is full of advice on building a high-quality social life.

 

Loving Friendships

 

  1. How early in human history did God recognize the need for companionship? Genesis 2:18.

 

Our Creator made us to need relationships. God created specific relationships in the family. But He also designed us to need relationships outside of our families. These relationships help us become better human beings, stronger in character and more like the loving God in His thinking. Unlike family connections, which we cannot choose, we can choose our friends.

 

  1. What biblical principle explains how we should treat others? Galatians 5:14; Matthew 22:37-40. Does this include our enemies? Matthew 5:43-47.

 

Loving another person in the same way that you love yourself is a huge challenge. But this command governs our treatment of all other human beings. If you lack solid friendships, examine yourself. How good are you at putting others’ needs ahead of your own?

 

It is natural to have some friendships that are deeper than others. Though there are levels of friendship, they all must be based on love: unselfish, outgoing concern.

 

Proverbs 18:24 states, “A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly ….” The King James Version contains a mistranslation of this portion of the verse. The Revised Standard Version reads: “There are friends who pretend to be friends ….” It takes more than just putting on a show of friendship to develop strong relationships. It takes being a person who shows others that their opinions, needs, and desires matter to you; that you value their companionship. It takes a desire to love them the way you love yourself. This attracts others to you.

 

  1. Did Christ say there was an even greater love in a friendship than loving as you love yourself? John 15:13.

 

 

This kind of love goes beyond the love you have for yourself. It means even dying for your friend if necessary. In everyday application, it refers to putting your friend’s needs above your own. Do you have friends like that? Are you a friend like that?

 

Other Qualities of Good Friendships

 

  1. What else builds friendships? Proverbs 14:20; 19:4.

Superficial things draw people to us. But these proverbs aren’t saying we should seek material wealth to draw more friends to us. The word for wealth in Proverbs 19:4 can mean anything from material possessions to (My Favorite) wealth of mind and/or character. This Hebrew word is also used in Proverbs 13:7, which states that even those with nothing physically can have “riches.”

 

If you are rich in character, your personality will attract others. Proverbs 19:6 states that “every man is a friend to him that giveth gifts.” Examine what your personality offers your friends. The richer your character and the more giving your personality, the stronger those friendships will be.

 

  1. What kind of friendships should we seek? Proverbs 27:6, 17.

Rubbing a knife against a sharpening iron makes the edge of the blade razor-sharp by friction. True friendship goes beyond common interests. Seek friendships that enrich your character and the character of others. Friends should have a positive influence on each other. Showing tough love to help someone through a problem is true friendship.

Not only can your close friends enhance your moral development and character growth, they can also accept you despite your shortcomings.

 

  1. What is a related quality of good friendships? Proverbs 17:17.

The Moffatt version translates this verse, “A friend is always a friend, he is a born brother for adversity.” Struggles and tough times reveal what friendships are made of: They even deepen relationships. They distinguish real friends from fair-weather friends. True friends will not desert you when things get rough or when they discover a weakness in you. They will see you through the adversity and help you overcome.

 

These proverbs say a lot about the kind of friend you should be, not just the kind of friends you should seek. Show your friends this unconditional love “at all times.” Be sure you demonstrate “wealthy” character around them, that your influence on them enhances their already strong character.

 

  1. What warnings do the Proverbs give about sure ways to ruin friendships? Proverbs 16:28; 17:9; 18:19.

These verses can refer to gossip that separates other people’s friendships. But gossip can also separate our own relationships if we spread rumors about our friends or share something with others that was told to us in confidence.

 

If you show yourself trustworthy; able perhaps to be blunt with your friends to their face in private, yet stick up for them around others and in the face of rumors, people will value your friendship.

 

We all make mistakes, though. A selfish act, an instance of stubborn pride, a hurtful comment; these can test the stability of a friendship. We should be able to apologize, and to forgive our friends when they slip up, to be a friend “at all times.”

 

Friendships to Avoid

 

  1. Does the Bible ever encourage two people not to be friends? Amos 3:3. Are there specific people we should not associate with? Proverbs 13:20.

 

Since we can choose our friends, God tells us to consider those choices carefully.

 

  1. Did Paul exhort Christians to avoid close company with nonbelievers? 2 Corinthians 6:14, 16-17.

 

These verses do not contradict the biblical law of “love thy neighbour as thyself.” Christians should hate the evil that people get involved in, but they should not hate the people. We can and should be friendly, help them if necessary, and even pray for them (Matthew 5:43-44). But do not associate with them or seek out their companionship.

 

There are also many nonbelievers that true Christians can become acquaintances with: people we work with or go to school with that we would not necessarily associate with beyond those situations. You can probably think of several acquaintances you have whose choices conflict with your values or morals in certain ways, but such a conflict does not typically arise in a work environment.

 

Use caution, however. Once those acquaintances move outside those boundaries, you could be dragged down by the lifestyle they lead. You may think you can be a good influence on them, but that is not what the Bible says. People who are bad influences will pull you down, often times you will not pull them up.

 

Close Friendships

 

  1. Are there some friendships that should be especially close? Proverbs 18:24 (last half).

 

Most of us have several good friends, maybe a few close friends, and maybe even one special, best friend. As you grow older, you will probably only be able to count your strongest, closest friendships on one hand. This is normal.

  1. As a human being, did Jesus Christ connect more with one disciple than the others? John 13:23; 21:20.

 

Instead of referring to himself by name in his own writings, the Apostle John refers to himself as “the disciple whom Jesus loved.” Because Jesus was the great God in human form, the one who epitomized perfect love and friendship. His friendship with the other disciples did not suffer from the special bond He had with John. Jesus loved all men to the point of dying for every man. Still, Jesus referred to all of His disciples as His friends (John 15:14-15) and had a best-friend type relationship with John. In fact, Jesus, just before dying, told John to take care of His mother, Mary (John 19:25-27).

 

  1. Did David have a special closeness with a certain friend in his life? 2 Samuel 1:26.
  2. To what level did Jonathan love his best friend David? 1 Samuel 18:1, 3; 20:17.

 

Here is an example of outstanding love on the human level. Jonathan loved David “as his own soul.” Jonathan’s loyalty went to the point where he told David, “Whatsoever thy soul desireth, I will even do it for thee” (1 Samuel 20:4). 

 

This relationship transcended even politics. Jonathan, son of King Saul (who was trying to kill David at this time), was the heir to Israel’s throne. But Jonathan had the courage to serve his friend, knowing that God had chosen David to be king, rather than cling selfishly to his position. It was a marvelous example of loyalty, mutual respect and admiration. It was unselfish love and up building of character in the other.

 

Treasure your friendships. Take time to learn who your real friends are. Choose your friends wisely. Then work at building those friendships. Examine the kind of friend you are and what you have to offer Spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically. If you do these things, your life can be enriched and your own character strengthened!

A.M. & P.M.

mothers-day
Dedicated to a Virtuous Woman of God.
All throughout the A.M. and the P.M. your unique and yet to the world, your like a beautiful parable.
But to me: sweet love, you’re an Amazing Mother and even yourself: a Precious Miracle!
If earth were just a rug then you’d be just the diamond that I’ve found among the human race.
But this world isn’t a carpet and just so everyone knows, you’re more precious then all the rubies. (Proverbs 3:15)
You fulfill everyone’s day with love, peace, happiness, hope, and faith. I’m here to give you praise.
You’re an Amazing Mother, a Precious Miracle from God, and you make everyone’s day! 
Just as the All Mighty and your two Phenomenal Miracles (Patrick & Myles) whom make your entire day, all day; every way.
You’re far more then just My Diamond of Destiny and way more valuable then all the rubies combined.
Happy Mothers day Cassandra, all day; Everyday!
You’re pretty Special

Fight the Spirit of this Age

This world constantly encourages self-indulgence: Isn’t it time you take care of yourself? Take a break! You’ve worked hard. You deserve this! It’s in the commercials, it’s in our entertainment, it’s in our diets, it’s in our workplaces, it’s in our schools, it’s in this worlds leaders, and it’s in the air! It is a powerful and influential attitude that Satan broadcasts through the atmosphere around us: self-importance, self-promotion, self-serving, and self-righteousness: selfishness!

 

The Western world is full of the spirit of contributing nothing. Rare are the men who make good things happen. Rare are the men who drive themselves to make a positive difference in the lives of others. We are surrounded by men who, at best, may be wealthy or intellectual, but who are spiritually wretched, miserable, impoverished, blind, and naked!

 

Even we who are striving to be obedient to God all tend to shrink back every now and then, to become complacent, to slip into ruts from time to time. We are tempted by the desire for “me” time, the allure of checking out of our responsibilities for a while.

 

If you are not fighting this spirit of corrupted manhood, you will succumb to it!

 

What counsel does God give the person afflicted by the attitude of rich, luxurious, and spiritually destitute Laodicea? “Anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see” (Revelation 3:18).

 

We need to open our eyes to the gaping needs that are all around us, needs that have opened up because of the myriad voids of Godly manhood.

 

Those shortcomings must be met by Godly men who see them and charge forward to fill them. Men who see the vision of what God created them to be. Men who recognize their own deficiencies, rely on His Spirit to fill the gap, then act to help others.

 

We need to see where our families need more of our presence and attention. We need to see where our congregations need more Christian manliness.

 

God says in Revelation 3:19 that if He loves us, He rebukes and chastens us. Many men wilt under even gentle correction or promptly begin justifying themselves and deflecting blame onto others. The Godly man embraces correction and zealously repents.

Anoint Your Eyes

Ours is a world of you do your thing, I’ll do mine. It has grown comfortable with accommodating and excusing evils like immorality and perversion that was scarcely imaginable just a few generations ago. Yet people feel smug and self-satisfied, convinced that such tolerance is a virtue.

 

God’s assessment of this age is evident in the personal message Jesus Christ sends to “the church of the Laodiceans” (Revelation 3:14-3:22). This is the end times and the final era of God’s Church, which exists right before Christ’s Second Coming. This is a time when truth has been cast to the ground (Daniel 8:12). Laodiceanism is the spirit of the age, it’s a spiritual disease that permeates not only the majority of God’s people (all those who profess to be his), but also society as a whole.

 

I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot,” Christ says. “I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked” (Revelation 3:15-3:17).

 

This spiritual wretchedness, accompanied by complacency and self-righteousness, deeply affects modern manhood. Many men are weak, effeminate, indeterminate, numbed by materialistic luxury and idleness, blanketed in a spirit of lukewarmness.

 

God wants men to be strong, masculine, and on fire for the truth! God needs men who are burning with zeal. His Work needs men who are ardently devoted to God’s purpose. Children need fathers and wives need husbands who are keenly engaged in their daily lives, leading the way God ordained.

 

Be honest: To what degree have you allowed yourself to get weighed down by Satan’s world? To take comfort in complacency, to shrink back into unmanliness? To feed your own laziness, selfishness, smallness? Is the trajectory of your life really leading you to where God wants you to be? 

Lif

A Key Approach to Lasting Joy

Do you know how to apply what the Bible teaches? Do you know where to find the help to bring joy and happiness into your life and that of those around you? If you do, your life will be filled with radiant and lasting joy.

 

Is true joy and love absent from your life? Do you struggle to face or overcome problems? Most people repeatedly do. It is easy to become discouraged, even depressed when we are bombarded with trials and problems and we fail to conquer them.

 

It is easy to be down when our efforts do not yield results. Could it be that our efforts are misdirected? Could it be our attempts are purely physical? The Bible calls such an approach “the works of the flesh.” While our intentions may be right, this approach lacks the power to really triumph.

 

At times, even true Christians struggle to find real joy. Some can put on a great face at Church services while at home problems are boiling! Some homes are divided: A young persons turns 18 and wants to get out because he has seen hypocrisy within the home; a husband and wife are so divided they contemplate breaking the vows they made to God and to one another; a family has employment or financial problems leading to undue stress between family members. At times, the tension produced by these problems can get so thick you can cut it with a knife.

 

A common cause may be that some people’s religion is a purely intellectual exercise; they are not truly living it. The Christian life is not merely knowing, but doing (James 1:22; Romans 2:13). Someone convinced only of the arguments of God’s truth will not change.

 

Most people are not successful because they don’t know the way. Do you know the way? If not, how can you be prepared to help teach all mankind?

 

If you are in God’s Church, remember that judgment is now on you (1 Peter 4:17). Note that this verse speaks in terms of obeying the gospel. God considers, or analyzes, all our works (Psalms 33:15). Does God see harmony or division? Does He see His people struggling and giving up or does He see them going to Him relying on Him for help?

 

God’s ministers see all sorts of personal and interpersonal problems people face. They can also see the purpose for these trials as God is perfecting and purifying His people. God’s ministers are called to be helpers of your joy (2 Corinthians 1:24). Godly counsel can go a long way in providing vision, staying power, and drive to tackle the issues at hand. To help your joy, true ministers of Jesus Christ have to show, teach, and expound on the laws of God. Keeping those laws is what makes people happy!

 

Do you practice the way to peace in your own family? Are you able to fight against, and overcome the works of the flesh? How skilled are you in educating people in the way of peace in your own home?

 

CAUSE AND SOLUTION FOR DIVISION.

 

It is natural and easy for human beings to rely on the flesh. When we have a problem, we tend to rely on our own abilities to work out physical solutions.

 

Thinking of all those who have lived and died before the first coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, lets point out the ancient Israelites here momentarily. To the ancient Israelites, God gave His Spiritual Law, as well as civil laws, statutes, and judgments. Before the sacrifice of Christ He also gave “a sacrificial law to remind them of sin and He gave a ceremonial law of physical works; rituals and things to do morning, noon, and night as a previous and temporary substitute for the Holy Spirit. The rituals and ceremonies of ancient Israel were there as a temporary substitute. But the ancient Israelites did not rely on God, even in obeying those physical laws. The physical rituals God instituted would have reminded them continually of the need for their Creator. They ended up rebelling.

 

How often do you solely depend on physical efforts of your own, not drawing on the power of God’s Holy Spirit? When you do not rely on God and the power of His Holy Spirit, It is impossible to overcome your problems. This is particularly true for relational problems within a family. Look at what happened in the Laodicean era (the sixth era) of the Church after one of God’s true servants died: Soon after, the people were not using the Holy Spirit, and family division ensued (Malachi 1:2-1:3). “God is telling us that the main problem is FAMILY DIVISION. This is the main problem Malachi is attacking. HIS MESSAGE IS NOT FOR THE WORLD. IT’S FOR GOD’S DIVIDED CHURCH TODAY, WHICH IS RAPIDLY BECOMING MORE DIVIDED.

 

People might see the Spiritual application of this principle in the Church but fail to see that the Kingdom of God must start in our homes! A family is a miniature type of the Kingdom of God and is the building block of that new civilization.

 

Any time a family fails to apply God’s Law by using God’s power, division becomes the result. The government in our homes must be right (Malachi 4:4-4:6). The husband must be the head of his wife, and Christ must be the Head of the husband (1 Corinthians 11:3). If we don’t honor our head, there will be deep Spiritual division.

 

God hates division! If our personal lives are full of strife and division, we are apart of the majority that is rebelling against God!

 

Some members are unwilling to talk with each other at services. Some seem not to understand that this is even a problem! Oftentimes such division exists between members of a physical family. How can that be in a united body of believers?

 

The Church produces a lot of material: the knowledge is available, but not everyone reads it. Some claim they don’t know where to find it. Others may have God’s Word but fail to apply it. This is where God’s ministers can be of special help. A minister who helps you understand and apply God’s law is a true gift from God.

 

God’s true ministers have to lead the brethren in following God. They must show them more and more how to put God’s knowledge into action, step by step. Real love faces problems and difficulties head on. We must not sweep our problems under the rug. We must address the causes.

 

Family division is a result of a lack of Christ in us. God wants deep unity within His Family! He wants His people to be as unified as He and Christ are (John 17:11). Only through using the Holy Spirit can we have the unity and joy we need. We cannot produce Spiritual fruit on our own: We need God’s help (John 15:4-15:5). The closer we are to God, the more Spiritual fruit we will bear. The more we obey God’s commandments, the more of His love we will receive and exhibit (John 15:7-15:12).

 

In Matthew 25, we see the example of foolish virgins who were kept out of the Kingdom of God because they didn’t have enough oil. Oil here is a symbol of God’s Spirit. We must monitor and ask God to replenish the Holy Spirit we receive from Him, and we must do it every day. Romans 8:14 and 16 say that to be children of God, we must use God’s Spirit.

 

WORKS OF THE FLESH.

 

The Apostle Paul was dealing with Jews in Galatia who insisted that people had to be circumcised. He wrote, “For you were called to freedom, brethren: only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh {anything carnally motivated}, but through love be servants of one another” (Galatians 5:13 Revised Standard Version).

 

The Greek word translated opportunity means a base of operation. When our base of operation is purely carnal instead of purely Spiritual, it always leads to sin. True liberty is freedom from sin. We have been called unto freedom from the curses that come from disobedience.

 

“For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another (Galatians 5:14-5:15) because hate is a curse and fruit of vanity that fulfills nobody and it divides, conquers, and devours those who hate. When members of a family or congregation are attacking one another even passively, it affects the entire congregation and the whole body of Christ!

 

Any action that is solely a human effort lacks real love. Paul lists the “works of the flesh” in Galatians 5:19-5:21 referring to physical action, as the Greek word ergon implies; work that is produced through human effort: “Adultery, fornication (sexual vice, impurity-adultery committed by a married person, fornication by a single person), uncleanness (lustful living), lasciviousness (unbridled lust, excess),Idolatry (worship of any false god, even wealth, status, etc), witchcraft (magic, sorcery, dabbling in the occult; the Creek word “pharmacaia” can even mean the use of drugs to try to escape reality), hatred (quarreling, picking fights), variance (strife, seeking to debate and argue), emulations (envious and contentious rivalry, jealousy), wrath (a quick temper, anger that boils up, emotional immaturity), strife (electioneering; putting oneself forward: This is the opposite of God. It’s Satan-inspired. God wants unity! We have to handle divisions His way), seditions (dissentions, divisions, disunion, party spirit), heresies (a body of people following their own way), Envyings (spiteful jealousy, ill will), murders, drunkenness (drinking bouts, intoxication), revellings (carousal), and such like (there are more ways the flesh manifests itself!): of the which i tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things SHALL NOT INHERIT THE KINGDOM OF GOD.”

 

These works of the flesh are manifest, because this is the way of human nature. This is the way the world is going, the way on which modern society (man’s entire civilization) is built. Can you see you are harming yourself and others if you practice these things?

 

We all struggle against the works of the flesh to one degree or another, because we are physical. These are the actions we naturally default to if we are not using the Spirit of God. Christians are called to OVERCOME these disqualifying works of the flesh.

 

Society is drunk on these works. Sadly, society can rub off on God’s people if they allow it. People struggle and fail to make any significant Spiritual progress. In some cases, we have two, three or four generations caught in a trap. If you are reaping such curses, challenge yourself to let it stop with you!

 

True Christians must not love the world, because that way is incompatible with the love of God (1 John 2:15). The person who is fulfilling the lust of the flesh is not of God (1 John 2:16). “That is, desires of the flesh, to have things to please the different senses. The sense of sight; the sense of touch and feel, sex; the sense of the exhilaration that you get from alcohol and or drugs.” Lust of the flesh, what is it? Even the taste of food; Many foods that taste good are bad for your health, and people wonder why their health is not good. They don’t think about eating food that’s good for their health and will keep their minds clear and their bodies in good shape. They only think of what tastes good to the palate, lust of the flesh. Brethren, I tell you, were just simply loaded with that and we don’t realize it.

 

That is, desires. Just selfish, self-centered desires of your own flesh, of the five senses. The sense of hearing. Now there’s good music and bad music. And Satan has got bad music going and got so many and especially all of the younger generation today on bad music and its having a very bad effect on their mind and spirit.”

 

WALK AFTER THE SPIRIT

 

Commandment keeping is for our own protection. It is a common sense matter of self preservation. We are not to walk after the flesh, but after the Spirit (Romans 8:1). As we do so, the righteousness of the law is fulfilled in us (Romans 8:4). “For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God” (Romans 8:5-8:8).

 

To be carnally minded is DEATH!

 

All humans struggle with the works of the flesh to some degree or another. It is important to deeply understand that “works of the flesh” just refers to any physical action. In other words, people may not want to sin deliberately but this is how they naturally act. If we don’t employ the power of God’s Holy Spirit, THESE ARE THE ACTIONS WE DEFAULT TO.

 

We MUST USE GOD’S HOLY SPIRIT TO OVERCOME OUR PROBLEMS! If we don’t, we will always struggle. Anyone who is not growing spiritually should truly ask themselves whether they are drawing on God’s help as they can and should. So many of the problems people face are being battled only with human will and human effort. If a person has been struggling with something for years, they should question their approach.

 

There is a war on wills and a lack of progress indicates a lack of depth in one’s Spiritual understanding.  The person in a health trial may try diligently juicing and dieting, but is he or she more importantly really looking to God for healing? How about you? Do you put your trust in the works of the flesh (anything you can humanly do)? You should do what lies within your power, but put your faith in God! Let your attack of your problems be of the Spirit. When we are motivated by God’s mind of love, our efforts are driven by God’s Spirit, not just our human will. That mindset will see real results.

 

God promises to strengthen, uphold, and help His people (Isaiah 41:10, 13). Don’t have a mere desire for help from God: (I HOPE GOD will help me with this.” Have faith: I KNOW GOD will help me). “This i say then, Walk in the Spirit, AND YE SHALL NOT FULFIL THE LUST OF THE FLESH. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would” (Galatians 5:16-5:17).

 

These verses are both a command and a promise. Walk in the Spirit, being deeply focused on God’s perfect law of liberty and then you won’t be preoccupied with thoughts and works of the flesh. How awesome is that? You will not fulfill the lust, or longing, of the flesh. Why? Because you are overcoming spiritually and are not defaulting back to letting your human nature guild you. The liberty God’s law offers prods us toward perfection.

 

“It Gets down to doing, but IT STARTS WITH AN ATTITUDE OF MIND THAT INSPIRES THE DOING: and then you act on it.” We have to think, and we have to act accordingly to the thinking. And the mind must direct what we do, our actions. And sin is when that action, that thought, conceives into a WRONG action. I’m trying to get down to the biblical definition of sin and just what is sin. It is a spiritual thing.

 

God explains the standards and wants us to live up to them. We don’t have to guess but we do have to act! Even if we only do what is commanded merely on a letter of the law level (a Chapter covered in my book “The Tree of Life, You’re Journey – My Mind”), God considers US UNPROFITABLE servants, whose fate is outer darkness (Luke 17:10; Matthew 25:30).

 

HARVEST OF THE SPIRIT

 

Know that every day you must fight and battle to spiritually grow. Every day presents opportunities for growth. Seek God’s direction in your life, through the Holy Spirit, every day. Heed that direction and be an individual of righteous action!

 

Moffatt’s version translates Galatians 5:22-5:23, which lists the fruit of the Spirit, as “the harvest of the Spirit” and say, “There is no law against those who practise such things.” A harvest is a crop you collect after the seeds have grown over a period of time. We must be sowing and practicing these seeds and fruits of Godliness now! They will not spring into action without first planting them.

 

The world loves the works of the flesh and is miserable because of them. But “they that are Christ’s have crucified the (self) flesh full of it’s affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit” (Galatians 5:24-525). How can we live and walk in the Spirit?

 

“The human will and the human effort is what you use to follow the Holy Spirit, and then use it! But it is the power of God, The Holy Spirit of God, that does the good deeds.” True freedom, peace, and fulfillment come through harvesting the fruits of God’s Spirit through Jesus Christ living in us.

 

Resist the temptation to employ mere human efforts and solutions. Learn to follow and use the Spirit, and you will walk in the Spirit instead of giving into the lust of the flesh!

 

Jesus Christ is Exemplar of Masculinity

Artists and theologians have portrayed Christ as a skinny, soft-spoken, long-haired, effeminate wimp who died of a broken heart. This is not who He was. The Bible says it is shameful for a man to have long hair and that effeminate men won’t even be in God’s Kingdom (1 Corinthians 11:14; 6:9).

 

Jesus was a real man.

 

The real Jesus was nothing like what most people imagine! The Bible says Jesus was a muscular man of perfect health and enduring strength. He kept all the physical laws of good health (Hebrews 4:15). Before His ministry began at age 30, He worked with stone and timber as a carpenter (Mark 6:3). He had well-developed, hardened muscles and tanned skin from laboring outdoors throughout His life. During His ministry, He walked from city to city through mountainous terrain, sometimes traveling many miles in one day.

 

Artists who paint Jesus as effeminate must not have read John 2, where Christ confronted money changers in the temple. When He saw shady business transacting inside God’s house, He took a handful of ropes and whipped the livestock to drive them out. He kicked over tables and chairs and threw money all over the floor. His deep voice bellowed through the halls: “Get out of God’s house, and take your things with you!” This was at the beginning of His ministry, when few even knew who this man was (John 2:18). Yet these Jews were too fearful to challenge this strapping, righteously indignant young man.

 

Before being tempted of the devil, Jesus went without food and water for 40 days; something no frail weakling could ever endure. Before His crucifixion, Jesus was brutally beaten (John 19:1), then nailed to a stake with iron spikes. Yet his health was so robust that He lived through what would have easily killed the average man. He survived until a Roman soldier finally thrust a spear into His side.

 

Physical fitness is only a fraction of Godly masculinity, though. Jesus was a learned man who took His education seriously even as a child of his youth. Though little is recorded about His younger years, there is enough for us to know that, as a boy, Jesus obeyed His parents, Joseph and Mary, and developed an intimate relationship with His Spiritual Father in heaven (Luke 2:51-2:52).

 

At 12 years old, He entered the temple at Jerusalem and discussed the truth of God with the most educated theologians. Luke 2:47 says those who heard Him were “astonished at his understanding and answers.” They were amazed by how much He understood and He was 12! As Jesus grew up, He “increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man” (verse 52).

 

The mere fact that Christ began His ministry at the relatively young age of 30 reveals what kind of character He had as a boy, a teenager, and a young adult. By the time His ministry began, Jesus had developed into a powerful, persuasive speaker. Those who heard Him were astounded, and those who hadn’t heard Him traveled a long way so they could. People who knew Him as a child couldn’t believe how eloquently this Jewish carpenter could speak. When He finished speaking, He often tried to withdraw for a quiet moment, yet throngs of people would sometimes track Him down (Luke 4:42).

 

Jesus also had a commanding presence. His doctrine astonished the masses, because He “taught them as one having authority” (Matthew 7:29). He boldly castigated the self-righteous religious leaders of the day: “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!” He cried. “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?” (Matthew 23:29, 33). Yet Jewish authorities coveted His popularity. Even Pontius Pilate, who oversaw Christ’s execution, acknowledged that Jesus was a just man who spoke the truth (Matthew 27:24).

 

Together with steel-like traits of vibrant health, intelligence, decisive leadership, righteous indignation, and powerful persuasiveness, Jesus also exhibited many velvet qualities. Above all, He was humble. Publicans and Pharisees criticized Him for spending time with sinners, but He knew that the sick are the ones who need the physician (Luke 5:31-32). The Lord and Master of the disciples instituted an ordinance of humility at His final Passover, and He washed their feet (John 13:13-14). Though He was their Lord and Master, that merely meant He served them all the more. He taught that those who serve most will receive the highest positions in God’s Kingdom. You can see why Jesus, the most humble servant ever, qualified to be King in God’s Kingdom.

 

Jesus was also a compassionate man. No matter how busy He was or how crowded the scene, He made time for the disadvantaged. Christ once left Jericho with a great multitude, and two blind men cried out to Him for mercy. The multitude rebuked them, but Jesus stopped to help. “So Jesus had compassion on them, and touched their eyes: and immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed him” (Matthew 20:34).

 

This genuine compassion for others even caused Christ to weep on occasion. In the case of Lazarus, Jesus cried because of the people’s lack of faith (John 11:32-43).

 

The gentleness of Jesus is reflected in how He treated children. In Mark 10, after some adults pressed to have Him lay hands on their little ones, His own disciples rebuked the parents. But He reprimanded the disciples, saying we must all become as little children to enter God’s Kingdom. He then took these children up in His arms and blessed them.

 

This same kindness drew many women to Christ. Some even wept at His feet. At Jacob’s well, Jesus asked a Samaritan woman for water. She was taken aback, since other Jews wouldn’t even speak to Samaritans. Christ discerned that this woman was involved in an adulterous relationship; the way He dealt with her evidently prompted her to repent of that wickedness and to support Christ’s work (John 4:28-30).

 

This is how quickly Jesus forgave people who showed fruits of repentance. Another time, scribes and Pharisees were about to stone a woman caught in the act of adultery. But Jesus intervened to prick everyone’s conscience: “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her” (John 8:7). After everyone left, He told the woman to go and sin no more.

 

Jesus Christ was the epitome of true masculinity. He wasn’t all steel, lording His authority over people. Neither was He all velvet. weak and effeminate standing for nothing. He possessed the perfect balance of virtues both powerful and tender, uncompromising and compassionate, blameless and merciful. He was both steel and velvet: strong, bold, courageous, gentle, patient and meek. This Godly form of masculinity drew many men, women, and children to Him.

 

The Bible paints the portrait of a real man; the kind of man all men should strive to become.

 

Manhood is a Weapon of Righteousness

Godly manhood is a weapon to destroy selfishness and to eradicate the wrong thinking, the wishy-washy perspectives, and the inward focus of modern manhood.

 

The office of a Godly man shapes you. You can’t shy away from it: You were born for it! God wants to use it to help you grow, not just into a Christian leader, but into a born Son of God! You must strive together with God, allowing Him to forge you into the man He needs you to be.

 

This is the path to manliness, to nobility, to accomplishment, and to genuine satisfaction. This is the road that leads your family from disorder to harmony, and from darkness into light. It gives your significant other security, stability, contentment, and peace of mind. It gives your children a window into Godliness, a blueprint for achievement and success. This is the route that leads to a shining place of honor in the eternal Family of God and within your household.

 

So embrace your God-given destiny!