Monday, August 17, 2015

Simplicity of SALVATION - Adrian Rogers

The longing of my heart and my prayer to GOD is for people to be saved -- EACH and EVERY person whom GOD has put in my life! This is my GREATEST desire for my family (Filipino and Fijian alike) -- SALVATION -- man's GREATEST need.

Using Pastor Adrian Rogers' message, The Simplicity of Salvation, i pray the Holy SPIRIT of CHRIST will illuminate the reader's mind, open up the eyes of his heart and touch the very depths of his soul -- revealing to him his GREATEST need: SALVATION... GOD's forgiveness for his sins.

CHRIST JESUS has done ALL that is required to fulfill GOD's Law -- His judgment against sin: death. CHRIST fully paid the penalty that is required for our own sins by shedding His blood on the cross; and GOD approved His sacrificial payment by raising Him from the dead by the supernatural POWER of the Holy SPIRIT. (1 Corinthians 15:3-6; Romans 5)

A person is made right with GOD by faith in JESUS CHRIST, not by obeying the Law. And we have believed in CHRIST JESUS, so that we might be made right with GOD because of our faith in CHRIST, not because we have obeyed the Law. For NO ONE will EVER be made right with GOD by obeying the Law. (Galatians 2:16, NLT)

If you confess with your mouth that JESUS is LORD and believe in your heart that GOD raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by BELIEVING in your HEART that you are made right with GOD, and it is by CONFESSING with your MOUTH that you are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)

The Simplicity of SALVATION (1/4) - by Adrian Rogers
The Simplicity of SALVATION (2/4) - by Adrian Rogers
The Simplicity of SALVATION (3/4) - by Adrian Rogers
The Simplicity of SALVATION (4/4) - by Adrian Rogers
JESUS' invitation: "Listen! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and have dinner with him, and he with Me." (Revelation 3:20)

And yet this is also written in the Holy Scriptures: GOD gave them up... GOD gave them up... GOD gave them over... (Romans 1:24,26,28) GOD will cause them to be greatly deceived, and they will believe these lies. Then they will be condemned for enjoying evil rather than believing the truth. (2 Thessalonians 2:11-12) If GOD is for us, who can be against us? But if GOD is against us...WHO CAN STAND?

May you hear JESUS knocking at the door of your heart -- and open the door to Him. May you receive His gift of repentance unto SALVATION -- PEACE with GOD -- today and forEVERmore.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

i'm DYING!

What IF one of your family members, diagnosed with a deadly disease, personally wrote this letter out of LOVE for you?

"i'm dying! What if i don't make it through today? What IF tonight GOD says, 'That was your last breath -- your time on earth is over -- come UP to your real home!'

The IFs in life is the WHY to this letter -- because IF (by GOD's design) i don't make it through tonight, i want you to know that i love you. i don't want any loose strings left untied, any words that need to be said, left UNsaid. IF i were to leave this physical world because GOD has called me to the REAL world where He is -- then i must say what is MOST important in my heart.

Forgive me for trying to make you into a person other than who you are; for not being more forbearing and more accepting of our differences as potential gifts for each other; for not praying more often and more fervently for you... i do LOVE you!

Forgive me for not being more tenderhearted and more understanding towards you; for my lack of patience with the small stuff; for my selfishness... i LOVE you SO much!

Forgive me for putting on you my personal expectations of how a CHRISTian ought to act; for not being more easy-going and lighthearted with you; for being SO "wordy" rather than just being a listener... i SO LOVE you!

Forgive me for not acting more on the deep concern i felt for you; for not making the time to just be with you -- to just listen with the ears of my heart to your unspoken words... i LOVE you very much!

Forgive me for not having the answers to your doubts; for not being more empathetic... i LOVE you SO!

i am dying! And so are you. Who will leave this earthly life first, only GOD knows. But i have been impacted by this sense of urgency because of the deaths of dear friends -- and of my own impending one. DEATH is ALL the time stalking ALL of us, 24/7 -- whether we know the exact time or circumstance... each day is a gift -- or NOT.

Are you prepared? Is your "house" in order? Is your conscience clear? Are you prepared to meet the Righteous and Holy JUDGE -- our ALLmighty Maker -- face to face?

i know you believe different -- for our lifestyles demonstrate what we truly believe in our innermost hearts. But i hope you'll keep an open mind that you could be wrong in your beliefs. i hope that you will be transparently honest as your inner heart is laid bare as you examine these words...

TRULY, we've ALL sinned. We have ALL done something our conscience plainly told us was wrong. Whatever that wrong may be -- don't whitewash it by calling it a "mistake" or "character defect" or "weakness" or "he/she/devil made me do it" -- call IT what "it" IS -- SIN: doing what is not right according to GOD.

IF you've taken ANYthing that's not yours -- that is stealing... which makes you a thief. (Exodus 20)
IF you've told lies -- even "white" lies -- that makes you a liar. (Exodus 20)
JESUS said, "whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart." (Matthew 5:28)

ALL the above are sins against a thrice-holy GOD; and whether we've just broken one or ten of GOD's 613 commandments -- we are guilty and deserve punishment: eternal separation from GOD forever...which is hell.

But it really is "easy" to escape punishment and enter into heaven -- ONLY because it cost GOD SO very much to be LOVE and yet still be the JUST and holy GOD that He is... so GOD the Creator Himself, died for His creation... for sinners like you... for sinners like me.

GOD gave GOD -- so that we may be saved from paying the penalty of our sin-debts -- which is HELL: eternal separation from GOD... forever separated from His love, His goodness, His mercy, His light, His blessings, His joy, His glory, His paradise, His heaven!

And if we think our own merits or good works are enough to enter into GOD's Kingdom -- consider Mother Teresa who did so much or the virgin Mary, the mother GOD chose for JESUS -- even they needed to be delivered from eternal death by the blood of the SON of GOD. And consider this -- if we even have one unforgiven sin -- even that one sin will shut the gates of heaven, but will open wide the mouth of hell to swallow up the unforgiven sinner into everlasting death.

But consider GOD's incomprehensible mercy and amazing grace -- even if you (or i) were the ONLY sinner in the whole universe, GOD would STILL give GOD -- His Son CHRIST JESUS -- to save you (or me) from hell. And it's not at all because of any "good" in us or in any "good" works we've done. It's because GOD SO LOVED His creation and SO HATES sin that HE died to make things right!

GOD in His righteous wisdom gave us the freedom to choose our destiny -- heaven with Him... or hell with satan and all his demons; and 'the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.' (Rev 21:8)

i've bared my heart to you because of the UNpayable amount of debt that JESUS paid for to set me free! And because i want to share with you the experience of having eternal life NOW -- and the REALITY of the JOY of my hope in CHRIST, the incredible PEACE He brings, the SUPERnatural confidence that bolsters me during difficult times.

You may or may not know of my personal sins -- but believe me when i say, "i've been made NEW!" But i am a changed person today only because CHRIST JESUS is the LORD of my life. i was as black as black can be! Yet it was the LORD JESUS who made me CLEAN on the inside and who is continually giving me the SUPERnatural POWER to live clean on the outside -- as i press on, one day at a time, to be-ing the person He has already destined me to be.

Don't we all want PEACE and JOY -- happily (blessed) ever after... in REALITY? The "happily ever after" will NEVER -- no, never ever -- NEVER happen on earth in anyone's lifetime. BUT when we receive JESUS as our Savior (Redeemer of all our sin-debts), as our LORD (Master, Ruler, King of our lives) -- He gives us eternal life (knowing GOD the Father and the GOD the Son -- CHRIST JESUS -- now... right NOW and forever). We are made new -- born again -- by the Holy SPIRIT of GOD... made children of GOD, so that NOW and forEVER we may call GOD  -- ALLmighty Creator of the Universe -- our Father in TRUTH... in REALITY!

"FIVE MINUTES AFTER DEATH" -- by Pastor Adrian Rogers

Dear one -- CHOOSE today -- for tomorrow is not guaranteed. Ask GOD in all sincerity: 'GOD in Heaven -- have mercy on me! i am a sinner, too. i believe Your Son JESUS died for all my sins. Thank you, JESUS, for dying on the cross for me. i believe in Your resurrection -- You defeated death! Save me from the penalty of my sins. Cleanse my heart; renew my mind; change me from the inside -- be the LORD of my life -- today and forEVERmore! Amen.'

Heavenly FATHER -- in the faithful Name of Your Son, CHRIST JESUS -- AMEN!" \o/

Monday, June 1, 2015

Solution to the SIN Problem

REALITY: "For EVERYone has sinned; we ALL fall short of GOD's glorious standard." (Romans 3:23)

DO ALL ROADS REALLY LEAD TO HEAVEN? EVERY major religion claims to be the ONLY way to heaven. Each of these religions has a different kind of God and a vastly different means of reaching Him. Because they're ALL DIFFERENT, they could ALL be WRONG, BUT THEY CAN'T ALL BE RIGHT.

Hal Seed (in "The GOD Questions -- Exploring Life's Great Questions About GOD") presents these religions' basic solutions to the realities of SIN and JUSTICE.

This religion teaches, "Those who love a hundred have a hundred woes. Those who love ten have ten woes. Those who love one have one woe. Those who love none have no woes." Craving is the root cause of suffering. Therefore, eliminate suffering by eliminating craving by following the EIGHT-FOLD PATH.

The ultimate goal is to become a pure spirit by living a life that merits GOOD KARMA. The problem with this solution is that no matter how many chances (REINCARNATIONS) we get, we're still flawed and finite people, so we continue to make mistakes. And because GOD is INFINITE, how does FINITE man gain that INFINITE amount of GOOD KARMA, good enough to gain NIRVANA?

This is by far the most common response to the problem of SIN -- eternal separation from GOD. Almost all world religions have adopted strategies for EARNING their way to GOD -- their plan is to WORK hard enough, long enough to EARN their way to heaven. IF they will faithfully perform these FIVE works, or these TEN -- or these 613...they will gain entrance into heaven. But what IF (or more realistically, WHEN) one day, you FAIL to perfectly perform these works?

GOD is LOVE...but GOD is also HOLY. GOD is JUST...but GOD is also MERCIFUL. A HOLY, JUST, LOVING and MERCIFUL GOD canNOT allow SIN to go unpunished. So GOD enforced JUSTICE by taking a Life (as Substitute blood-PAYMENT for the PENALTY of SIN -- yours and mine), but the Life He took was the life of His Son, CHRIST JESUS. GOD grants FORGIVENESS based ONLY on the PERFECT merits of Another.

This SELF-centered religion believes that this world is all there is. "So I concluded that there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor..." (Ecclesiastes 3:12-13) This "religion" believes there is NO GOD, therefore making him/herSELF god.

WHICH RELIGION IS RIGHT? They're all different. They could ALL be wrong -- BUT THEY CAN'T ALL BE RIGHT. "The way to heaven has many roads" -- does it matter which way we take as long as we are SINCERELY seeking "God"?

IMAGINE a skydiver mistakenly reaching for his BACKPACK instead of his PARACHUTE just before jumping out of a plane. His well-intentioned ERROR won't save him from CERTAIN catastrophe. It is possible to be SINCERE, but SINCERELY WRONG.

Which of the above solutions matches what your CONSCIENCE -- your heart of hearts -- tells you is TRUE? Choosing the FAITH that TRULY saves is this lifetime's MOST important free-will decision.

The true MESSIAH taught that GOD loved us enough to make The Way for us. He taught that GOD forgives EVERYone based on His grace, and that He opens His arms to us NOT because of how good we are or how much we do. It's not about GOD asking us to make the effort -- it's about GOD having already made the effort for us. It's not about reaching up to get to GOD -- it's about GOD reaching down to us to rescue us. It's not about DOing rules and behaviors -- it's about GOD having already DONE ALL that is necessary to end the separation between sinful man and a thrice-Holy GOD. The MESSIAH is the thrice-Holy GOD -- His Name is YESHUA...JESUS. (read John 3)

JESUS, on the Cross -- having perfectly completed His work which GOD has sent Him to accomplish -- said, "It is finished!" JESUS, in Heaven -- seated on the throne at the right hand of GOD -- said, "It is finished! I AM the Alpha and the Omega - the Beginning and the End. To ALL who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life." (John 19:30; Revelation 21:6)

Every person in the world is only a prayer away from heaven. This prayer is a simple request from the sincere heart: "LORD, thank You for what Messiah JESUS did for me on the Cross. Please accept His sin payment on my behalf and be my LORD."

Saturday, May 30, 2015

IF and SO -- Two GREAT, Two-Letter Words

IF my LORD GOD had not timed it JUST-so, SO that the stoplights would be green or red, SO that i would arrive at Palm and Dennery on a red light, SO that i can look around as i caught my breath (early Thursday morning, as i biked to work)... (Luke 1:37)

IF the alive-within SPIRIT had not caused my eyes to focus and alight on the sight of a crumpled piece of green, while at the same time causing all traffic to be properly stopped or turning away from my direction, SO that i can pick up the recognizable greenback in safety... (Romans 8:14)

THEN i wouldn't have felt that boost of JOY, which energized my body to tackle the rest of the uphill ride with hallelujah praises singing in my heart and bursting forth out of my lips. (Nehemiah 8:10)

JESUS my Beloved LORD knew my spirit wasn't light that morning, which caused my body to feel heavy as i pedaled up Palm -- lacking energy because i was lacking His JOY, which is my day-to-day source of strength in ALL things, in ALL circumstances. (Philippians 4:13)

SO my ever-compassionate LORD JESUS gave me a perk in the form of a one-dollar bill, which perked me up in my spirit, which sparked the waiting storehouse of JOY within, which infused the cells of my body with palpable, energetic happiness because of the IN-sight that GOD was speaking to me in my real-time circumstance. (Hebrews 13:8)

The LORD SPIRIT spoke into my heart -- "See, rln, how money has such power over people, even you? See how highly energized you got from just a mere dollar? Can you understand more clearly then, the literal "high" of someone whose god is money?" (Matthew 6:24)

"Yes, LORD." (Romans 10:10)

i also knew (that GOD knew that i knew that He knew! -- for He knows at ALL times, ALL the WHATevers within my heart and mind and body) that it was a "GOD-speak" event in the momentary circumstance. i knew without a shadow of doubt that it was a GOD-given gift of serendipity, a GOD-governed provision, a GOD-gladdened lesson. (Psalm 139)

What else was there for me to do, but to sing aloud thankful praises for my heavenly Father -- for His higher-than-the-heavens wisdom, His tenderhearted ways, His compassion-in-action LOVE...His ALL-mightiness in ALL things, in ALL circumstances, in ALL ways...always! (Philippians 4:4)

Thank You, my LORD GOD, for cleansing my heart more and more and more with your Light -- The TRUTH of The Word -- SO that i may see Your glorious holy beauty more and more and more with the eyes of my heart in these unexpectedly delightful moments that abound in Your creation! (Matthew 5:8)

Hallelu-JAH for the greatest "SO"! \o/ For GOD SO loved the world that He gave His one and only Son JESUS, that IF anyone trusts in Him -- he or she will not perish into eternal hell, but will have eternal Life! The SO has been demonstrated in HIStory -- the IF is your chosen story... (John 3:16-18)

Dear reader: may the SPIRIT of GOD blaze the TRUTH of the Good News into your heart, SO that you may choose for your self TOday to receive in all humility and genuine repentance, the utterly AMAZING GOD-given gift of GRACE -- your REDEMPTION through CHRIST JESUS -- SO that you may enJOY a GOD-governed life with GOD-gladdened days forEVERmore as your greatest SO in answer to your IF.

AMEN -- in the ALL-mighty Name of the LORD GOD JESUS CHRIST!

Monday, May 25, 2015

Personal PEACEmaking - Pastor Steve Boschen

"Bless this Home" is a much-desired longing in the hearts of everyone, as seen in the many artistic display of signs hung on doors and walls of many homes all over the world. But what does the word "BLESS" really mean? From a Google search, i got: "to confer or invoke divine favor upon; to express a wish or desire of happiness; to make happy; to make successful; to prosper in temporal concerns," etc.

But what does GOD say about being "GOD-blessed" -- as defined from the Sermon on the Mount? (Matthew 5-7)

And what does it mean to have a GOD-blessed home?

Pastor Steve Boschen (Ocean View Church) -- in his sermon-series "Bless this Home" -- focuses on The Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-12) as the GOD-given way to have a blessed home. In The Beatitudes, the LORD JESUS Himself defines what is eternally "blessed."

Pastor Boschen: "We at Ocean View Church as the "Family Place" in the South Bay seek to be more than simply CHRISTian homes by name. We seek to be CHRIST-centered homes in practice... JESUS isn't just a part of our life, He IS our life! We are fully devoted, following and serving and knowing, and bringing glory to Him." (excerpts from Pastor Steve's Welcome)

At OVC, "our family is committed to being a CHRIST-centered home. We are committed to building a "culture of peace" that reflects GOD's peace and the power of the Gospel of CHRIST in our lives. JESUS isn't just a part of our lives -- He IS our life.

"We look to the Scriptures and the Holy SPIRIT for guidance on how we can respond to conflict in a way that will honor GOD, promote justice, reconcile relationships and preserve our witness for CHRIST. As GOD gives us His wisdom and grace, we are committed to actively teaching and encouraging one another to live out the principles of peacemaking and reconciliation." (excerpts from Bless this Home)

PERSONAL PEACEMAKING prayers of Ocean View Church

Be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as GOD through CHRIST has forgiven you.
 Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of GOD.
JESUS: "Why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye."
Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing. Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.  If another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.
DAVID: "Let the godly strike me! It will be a kindness! If they correct me, it is soothing medicine. Don’t let me refuse it." If you reject discipline, you only harm yourself; but if you listen to correction, you grow in understanding.
Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs. JESUS: “So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to GOD...If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offense. If the other person listens and confesses it, you have won that person back."
Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.
LOVE never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
Pastor Boschen: "As we stand in the light of the cross, we realize that bitterness, unforgiveness and broken relationships are not pleasing to the LORD who has reconciled us to Himself through the sacrifice of His only Son." (John 13:34-35; Ephesians 4:29-32; Colossians 3:12-14)

The ultimate personal peacekeeping is making peace with GOD through putting our faith in CHRIST JESUS as LORD of our lives, so that we can also receive the peace of GOD that surpasses all human understanding. For GOD loved the world SO much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free. (John 3:16; 8:36 NLT)

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

PRAYER For Our Husbands -- Christa Boschen

Psalm 19...

Philippians 4...

Jeremiah 29:11...

Philippians 2; 2 Corinthians 10:5...

Romans 12...

Proverbs 3:5-6...

Psalm 90:17...

Ephesians 3...

Revelation 5:12-14...

Marriage MATTERS at Ocean View Church because marriage MATTERS to GOD.

NOTES from seminar (Craig Groeschel video) --
Seek GOD together in PRAYER;
Fight FAIR -- healthy couples fight for RESOLUTION;

UNhealthy couples fight for victory;
Have FUN -- face to face, side by side, belly button to belly button;
Stay PURE -- because IMpurity in marriage is like "cat diarrhea!"
NEVER Give Up -- ALL things are POSSIBLE for GOD...

seek HIM, no matter WHAT.

Marriage is a COVENANT -- not a contract!

“For I hate divorce!” says the LORD, the GOD of Israel. “To divorce your wife is to overwhelm her with cruelty," says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies. “So guard your heart; do not be unfaithful to your wife.” (Malachi 2:16)

Monday, February 2, 2015

IN EVERYthing -- Make a Beeline to JESUS! (C. H. Spurgeon)

Historians call Charles Haddon Spurgeon the "Prince of Preachers" and his guiding motto in life is...
"In EVERYthing -- make a beeline to JESUS!"

Here's the well-known story that explains Spurgeon's motto...

Much later in Spurgeon's ministry, a young pastor asked him to listen to him preach and give him a critique -- a common request since Spurgeon was revered by other preachers. After he listened to the young man's impassioned sermon, Spurgeon was honest -- he thought it was well prepared and well delivered, but it nevertheless...STUNK.

"Will you tell me why you think it a poor sermon?" asked the young pastor.

"Because," said Spurgeon, "There was NO CHRIST in it."

The young man said, "Well, CHRIST was not in the text; we are not to be preaching CHRIST always, we must preach what is in the text."

The old man responded, "Don't you know, young man, that from every town, and every village, and every little hamlet in England, wherever it may be, there is a road to London?"

"Yes," said the young man.

"Ah! said the old preacher, "and so from every text in Scripture there is a road to the metropolis of the Scriptures, that is CHRIST. Dear brother, when you get to a text, say, 'Now, what is the road to CHRIST?' and then preach a sermon, running along the road towards the great metropolis -- CHRIST." (Sermon 242, CHRIST -- Precious to Believers, preached by C.H. Spurgeon, March 13, 1859)

(Ephesians 3:20)

CHRIST JESUS was in the beginning with GOD; ALL things were made through Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made. In Him was LIFE, and the LIFE was the LIGHT of men. The LIGHT shines in the darkness, and the darkness has NOT overcome it. (John 1:1-5, RSV)