The Reality of Hell

The concept of an eternal destination reserved for wicked souls that is filled with the wrath of God and torment is too terrible an idea for many people to tolerate. And I would even submit here that the idea of Hell should be too terrible to tolerate; I do not believe God gave us the revelation of Hell to be tolerated.

We need a revelation of hell that will drop us to our knees!

Unfortunately, the academic tendency of today’s theology is to sterilize Biblical concepts with finely articulated and well rounded presentations. I am not going to offer such an apologetic here. Hell is holy to God because Christ satisfied hell on the cross (Romans 5:8-9).

Hell is the most abhorrent, appalling, disturbing, ghastly, gruesome, terrifying and terrifyingly misunderstood thought one can entertain. It’s a place God created for Satan, the murderer and father of all lies, and his demons (Matthew 25:41) where His wrath will burn with everlasting punishment (Matthew 25:46)! I believe that because God created the human soul to be in holy, eternal, fellowship with Him, the thought of everlasting separation from God in burning wrath is fundamentally the most repulsive thought imaginable for our hearts to entertain. The tendency, then, is to veil the reality of hell in layers upon layers of questions, doubts, and theories, thus dulling this terrible thought until it no longer pierces our soul through with anguish. But we must never allow our hearts to become dull towards the reality of Hell. It is holy to God and was central to Christ’s finished work on the cross!

People have not changed so much in 2,000 years that the doctrine of Hell we find so repulsive today was somehow so acceptable to them then. No one relishes the idea that they will be strictly held accountable for every wicked deed they do; and every soul finds the idea of everlasting punishment unbearable! The world was converted to God 2,000 years ago because it witnessed the love and power of God, and in light of God’s great love and power, the reality of hell makes sense. God did not give us the revelation of Hell to win popularity contests and delight our fancies; “hell” only makes sense after someone has witnessed the “power” and “love” of Jesus on the cross and in the resurrection! The reality of Hell can only be rightly understood in light of God’s revelation of sin, love, and justice.


The agony of death is separation from God (Matthew 7:23), and sin is the mechanism by which God’s creation is separated from Him (1 Cor. 15:56). Our Creator-God has told us that we are more than mere flesh, but that we also have a soul and a spirit (1 Thess. 5:23). Even our body is more than mere material value (Luke 12:23). This means that death is not simply the end of our mortal body, but instead, that the reality of death is sin-induced separation from our Creator (Genesis 2:17 and 3:24).

I’ve heard it said that “Heaven is for those who humbly bow their knees before God and say ‘not my will but Thine be done’; Hell is for those who hold up their fists to God until He finally says to them ‘not My will but thine be done’.” Hell is not God’s will for His creation; Hell is the will of those who obstinately choose separation from God.

God did not mince words when He said “wrath is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18); wrath is the result of deliberate defiance and rebellion against the truth. When we choose the things that God will have no part of, we choose separation from the One who gives life!

We see the reality of separation from God in death portrayed in the revelation of the judgment: “And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. THIS IS THE SECOND DEATH. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:11:-15)

What we understand as death now is the first separation from God, but Hell is the final separation from God where those who persistently denied God and choose separation from Him in this life by their works will receive the reality of their choices.

The more we suppress the truth with our lies about God the tighter grip death gains on the world! Like a chain smoker who tries to ignore the signs of his cancer, or the drug addict who reassures himself that he can keep it together, our lies do not change the reality of our separation from God, they only ensure its finality!


“Hell” was eternally satisfied with Jesus when God did the unthinkable by putting on flesh and emptying Himself of all privilege; taking the sins and infirmities of the world upon Himself, in the body of Jesus God provided the ultimate sacrifice on the cross and proved His love to the world with power to deliver the human race from their sin and guilt! In the face of Christ we see God’s will for mankind and the love that He demonstrated towards us even while we were still sinners as we peer into the face of Him by whose blood we were saved from wrath (Romans 5:8-9).

The few times in human history when someone of great privilege has sacrificed everything and lowered themselves to the desperate and destitute around them, they have received praise and acclamation from everyone for their noble sacrifice. Yet all of these noble souls were guilty of sin at some point in their life. Only Jesus was wholly innocent of all guilt; for all of mankind’s time on this earth, God was lavishly pouring out His grace on the human race and giving life and joy to all who lived on earth, regardless of whether or not they returned any thanksgiving or worship to Him. As the human race stubbornly pressed on in sin, reaping death for the transgressions that separated them from the author and giver of life, God’s love and mercy was proved upon the earth with every new sunrise. From such a place of perfection did God empty Himself of privilege and took upon Himself flesh- and unimaginable denigration for the Creator of all things- and subjected Himself to mortal weakness because of His perfect love!

To the apostate and the skeptic who cast blame on God, saying “for all the injustices we suffer here, living on earth is hell enough”, what will you say to the love of God who left heaven with the resolve to pay for your sins and surrendered His hands and feet to be nailed to the cross by sinners just like you and I?


The lies we tell ourselves can sometimes suppress the insatiable human desire for justice when “justice” becomes personal, however, we cannot escape the reality that every human soul craves justice.

Political philosophers ( have long agreed that the single most important pillar of stable governance is “justice”. Families stand strong when there is a clear sense of justice, and they crumble when there is oppression and chaos. Businesses thrive with equitable business practices, but unfair business practices can poison entire business cultures. No part of the human experience of life can long survive when justice is robbed! We need justice.

Justice necessitates both “moral law” and “impartial fairness”. One of the lies we tell ourselves today is that there is no moral standard to which we are accountable, yet we loudly protest when we are not treated fairly. We rob ourselves of the justice we crave when we separate ourselves from the moral law of our Creator to pursue our own lusts. This suppression of the virtues of truth in favor of ungodliness eventually leads to the “hell-on-earth” of an utterly unjust society, courteously of our own making! Whether here on earth or in eternity to come, we cannot escape hell when we choose separation from God!

Justice belongs to God. He wrote His moral law on our hearts in our consciences (Romans 2:15), and He will execute an impartial and fair judgment upon all mankind (Romans 2:5-11). The Judge of all mankind has said that “indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, according to each one’s deeds” are the inheritance of every soul who does evil (Romans 2:6, 8-9). He is impartial and fair in His judgments; there will be no favoritism towards the Jew, nor prejudice against the Gentile. We will all be judged according to what we have received from God.

There are many questions regarding how God will apportion His wrath on sinners when the Day of Judgment arrives; such questions as “is hell eternal?” “Is hell a conscious torment?” “Will those who never heard or rejected the gospel suffer in hell?” These questions are valid but not necessary in order for God to be a just judge. A prior understanding of the precise proportion of punishment that will be received for a transgression is not necessary in order for justice to exist. I may not know what the penalty is for Grand Theft Auto, but I know that it is wrong and that I will be punished accordingly. Justice only necessitates the existence of a moral law and an impartial and fair application of punishment.

The aforementioned questions are valid subjects for another time- subjects to which many scriptures speak- but it is a foolish and disastrous distraction to worry about how God will apportion His wrath on sinners when the Lamb of God is offering the love of God to the world on God’s holy altar!


I believe there is a reason why God said that He will “judge the secrets of all mankind by Jesus Christ according to the gospel” (Romans 2:16). I believe the reason why we will be judged by Jesus Christ is because when those of us who rejected Christ look at Him, all our lies will evaporate like the dew in the morning heat and we will see in Christ Jesus the perfect and irrefutable logic of God! We are told that “at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, in heaven and on earth, and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:10-11); I do not believe this confession will be made under duress, but that when the world looks at Jesus Christ on the Judgment Day, we will see the love of God that we rejected, and we will find no shelter from the terrible reality that we have chosen for ourselves!

I said above that we must never let our hearts become dull towards the reality of hell. I believe there is only one thing on earth worse than a Church that denies the existence of hell, and that is a Church, knowing the existence of hell, that says nothing about it to the lost world! The Christian whose knee is bent before God in prayer because of hell will rise with the fire of the Holy Spirit to save souls from hell by the good news of Jesus Christ!

Unity: Wisdom is Justified by her Children

Unity in the body burns in Christ’s heart so much so that it consumed His last prayer before His crucifixion (John 17:20-23) and by the Holy Spirit who speaks only what He receives from Christ instructed the Church to reject a divisive man (Titus 3:10). For my part, through the communion of the Holy Spirit, my heart has been broken over the disunity that plagues the Church today. The Scripture certainly hit the nail on the head, saying, “know that the divisive man is warped and sinning” (Titus 3:10).

But I am not without hope! The very nature of “love” always hopes, and I believe that those who love Jesus will be broken over the state of disrepair the Church’s love for one another has fallen into, and we will all be compelled together again someday; even that one day tears will run over the time and fellowship that we needlessly lost!

Does this make me ecumenical? By no means! I believe the Church will unite in sanctification and honor. I believe that in humility and meekness we will one day endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Perhaps it will be through trial and tribulation that we will have our pride and arrogance purged from us and learn to walk in the grace of God, rather than just being content to talk about the grace of God. But I am certain that through the work of God love with be revived in the Church again and unity restored to our Body!

The difference between the move of God towards unity and the apostate ecumenical movement is that the latter is made on man’s terms, on man’s timetable, but the former is according to the infinite wisdom of God who works all things together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose; one is made in the peace of Christ, and the other is made in the peace of the world.

Ephesians 4:11-16 (MEV) He gave some to be apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers, for the equipping of the saints, for the work of service, and for the building up of the body of Christ, until we all come into the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, into a complete man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so we may no longer be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about with every wind of doctrine by the trickery of men, by craftiness with deceitful scheming. But, speaking the truth in love, we may grow up in all things into Him, who is the head, Christ Himself, from whom the whole body is joined together and connected by every joint and ligament, as every part effectively does its work and grows, building itself up in love.

“Teachers” were given, in part, for the purpose of building up the body until we all come into the unity of “faith” and “knowledge of the Son of God”. Though teachers today are more known for accomplishing division rather than unity, it is my hope here to offer something by which the body may be strengthened according to the timely work of God for the “unity of the faith and the knowledge of His Son”.


Matthew 11:18-19 “For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon. The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look, a glutton and a wine bobber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ But wisdom is justified by her children.”

Luke 6:43-45 “A good tree does not bear corrupt fruit, nor does a corrupt tree bear good fruit. Each tree is known by its own fruit. Men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they gather grapes from a wild bush. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bears what is good, and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bears what is evil. For of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. ”

Perhaps one of the greatest stumbling blocks to Christian unity has been in knowing how to exercise unity in light of faithfulness to God. There can be no doubt that many of the “divisions” that have occurred in Church history have followed great moves of the Holy Spirit to separate His children from various apostasies (1 Cor. 11:19 & 1 John 2:19). But the vast majority of divisions within the brotherhood throughout our history have come from contentions over the appearance of godliness, but which in substance had nothing to do with godliness.

If we will humble ourselves and wait to observe the fruits of a matter, perhaps we will not be so easily divided against one another. In waiting- and praying- for the fruits of a matter to be revealed we will more clearly see the hand of God at work in our midst, and we will be slow to form harmful and unrighteous judgments against one another. But one thing may be said of this that I can see no way for the boastful, the proud, or the mighty who are puffed up with knowledge to practice this kind of patience; I believe this practice will only bear fruit worthy of the Holy Spirit when it is received with the meekness of wisdom, then we will see the fruits of righteousness that are sown in peace by peacemakers in the church of Christ again.

Perhaps the Lord will create the platform and provide the environment for the Church to be strengthened by what every joint and ligament supplies for the unity of faith and knowledge of the Son of God; perhaps we will again see the love of God awakened and rekindled to a fervent pitch in the heart of the Church until we can no longer stand to walk in the darkness and be divided against one another like we were enemies (1 John 2:11).

Culture Slaves: In Bondage to the Culture

Today while on the bus I was communing with the Lord regarding evangelism and discipleship; “where do you take new disciples for evangelism?”, “is it culturally accepted here to talk with strangers about deep subjects?”, “what size group would be best?”

Then the Spirit spoke a word to me and said “Don’t be put in bondage to the culture.”

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” ~Romans 12:2

When the world begins to shape the way the Church thinks about serving God it causes us to become slaves to the culture and stagnation shortly follows. The Church is called to do many things that go against the dictates of culture; we’re called to “love”, to be “a voice of truth”, to live “holy” (separate unto God) in ways that defy the culture. How can we love the poor as Christ calls us to when we allow “culture”- which has already relegated them into obscurity- to define how we act towards them? As children of God, how can we love our enemies if we conform ourselves to the culture of the world, which teaches us to defend against our enemies? Indeed, how can we love our brethren as Christ loved them if we listen to the culture which says to place “self” above others?

Cultural bondage may promise “effectiveness”, but it only delivers the fruits of compromise. Consider those fruits for a moment: is the truth silenced? Is love hot, cold, or lukewarm? Is the Church pure? Is the world converted through genuine repentance? Is grace perverted?

“Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.” ~1 Peter 2:17

Perhaps our bondage to “culture” can be seen clearly in how we understand the first command of this passage. When we think about “honoring all people”, to who do we look to first to understand how we should go about this, to God or to culture?

If we look first to the dictates of culture for this we may honor people before people while dishonoring them before God. We must look to our Creator to understand how to honor His creation.

It bears repeating that when we allow the world to shape the way we think about serving God we become slaves to the culture and stagnation will follow shortly. This is one of the reasons why the Western Church is so dead, because she allowed cultural “do’s” and “don’ts” to quench her fire!

“Trust in Jehovah with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. Acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will direct your path” ~Proverbs 3:5-6

May we trust in Jehovah with all our hearts and lean not on our own understanding; let Him be the One we look to in all our ways that He may direct our paths! Amen!

Defending Your Faith: Is Jesus Yahweh?

There is nothing more important, more central, and so hotly disputed than the deity of Christ. Muslim’s believe that Jesus was a prophet, but not God; Mormons believe that Jesus became god distinct from the Father; Mahatma Gandhi believed Jesus to be a “great man”; atheists believe him to be anything from a great man, to a raving lunatic; and Christians believe Jesus to be Jehovah God incarnate.

So what did Jesus claim?

Jesus said “you are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I AM [He], you will die in your sins” (John 8:23-24). Jesus used Jehovah’s “I AM” covenant name, making His meaning explicitly clear: unless we believe that He is Jehovah God, we will die in our sins.  Because of this the Jews picked up stones to kill Him for what they saw as blasphemy

The claim today is that either Jesus never claimed to be God, and/or, that the prophets never gave the Messiah deity.  Indeed, if Jesus came claiming to be God but the Scriptures never said the Messiah would be God, then Jesus would have been a imposter and a fraud; He would not have been the promised Messiah if His claims about Himself were found to contradict the prophecies concerning the coming Messiah. 

So, as the Bereans were considered “more noble” because they tested daily everything that was preached to them according to the Word to find out whether or not it was from God, we must give a defense for our belief that Jesus is Yahweh incarnate.  And we must remember that giving a defense for the faith we have in Christ is one of the chief tasks given to the Church (1 Timothy 3:15; Matthew 28:19-20; 1 Peter 3:15), but to do so we must “study to show ourselves approved” (2 Timothy 2:15[NKJV]). Lazy answers and cliche’s are damaging to the Church because they show through. Clever debate tactics and mudslinging may win arguments, but they will not win souls. We must be able to reason from the wisdom and word of God with those we encounter so that they may receive the faith that is delivered to us by Jesus Christ through the Word of God.

Prefatory Note: if we answer this question only with an experience-based answer (i.e. “I know because He lives within me”), then we haven’t given a defense of Jesus as the promised Savior and Messiah; we have only stated that we have had some kind of mystical encounter, but that says nothing of Jesus Christ. Neither have we given a defense of the faith that will make “faith” possible in the ears of the hearer, for “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17).

Thus, I put forth this question to answer: “Is Jesus Jehovah GOD?”

Herein is my defense for why I believe from the Word of God that Jesus is Jehovah God (this is my answer to questions like “did Jesus really claim to be God”, “why not call Jesus a prophet/great man”, “the Messiah was never prophesied to be God”, “there is only one God, so Jesus and the Father can’t both be God”):

Firstly, Old Testament prophecies demonstrate that the Messiah bears the names and titles of God:

  • “God”: Deuteronomy 4:35 and 6:4 make it known that Jehovah alone is God; in Isaiah 9:6-7 the Messiah is given 5 names; “Wonderful”, “Counselor”, “Mighty God”, “Everlasting Father”, and “Prince of Peace”. See also John 1:1 and Romans 9:5.
  • “Savior” & “Redeemer”: Isaiah 43:10-11 says that God alone is “savior”. Again in Isaiah 49:26, Jehovah reveals that by His judgment all living things will know that He alone is “savior” and “redeemer”. See Hosea 13:14, Luke 2:11, John 4:42, and Acts 5:31for further details.
  • “Jehovah” (YHWH): Jeremiah 23:5-6 foretells the coming “Branch of Righteousness” and says “Now this is the name by which He will be called: Yahweh our Righteousness”. In the New Testament, Hebrews 1:8-12 also ascribes to Jesus Psalms 102:25-27.
  • “I AM”: Exodus 3:14-15 ascribes this title to God. In John 8:23-24, Jesus said that unless you believe He is the “I AM”, you will die in your sins (see also John 8:58-59; 13:19; 18:5-8).
  • “Alpha and Omega”: Isaiah 44:6 God takes upon Himself the Hebrew version of the Alpha and Omega, and in Revelation 1:8, 17-18; 2:8; 22:12-13, it is Jesus communicating that He is the Father by bearing the title Alpha and Omega in Himself.
  • “King of kings and Lord of lords”: In Deuteronomy 10:17 God takes this title as God of gods and Lord of lords, furthering His message that there is only One God, and in Revelation 17:14 and 19:11-16, Jesus receives this title Himself.

The Scripture then witnesses that Jesus also receives the prerogatives of Deity:

  • “Glory”: Isaiah 42:8-11 foretells the glory of God that rests upon the Messiah. We see this reflected in Jesus in John 17:5 and 17:24.
  • “Worship”: Exodus 34:14 forbids giving worship to anyone else but God; Jesus refuted Satan in Matthew 4:10 with this commandment. But Jesus received worship at His birth (Matthew 2:2-11), after calming the storm (Matthew 14:31-33, and after His resurrection (Matthew 28:9-10).
  • “Saving name”: in Joel 2:32 it was promised regarding the Messiah that “whoever calls on the name of Jehovah shall be saved”. Jesus was given the name by which men may be saved (Acts 2:21; Romans 10:13); recall Isaiah 43:10-11 in which we’re told that only Jehovah is “Savior”.
  • “Prayer”: Jesus is prayed to and through (John 14:13-14).
  • “Faith”: Jesus is also believed on for salvation (John 3:16, 36; Acts 16:31).
  • “Forgiveness of Sins”: in Isaiah 53:4-5, 10, and 12, it was foretold that atonement for sin would be made by the Messiah. Psalms 99:8 calls God by the name “God-Who-Forgives”.

Scriptures also demonstrates that Jesus possesses the incommunicable attributes of God:

  • “Independence”: only God is all self-sufficient, therefore “aseity” belongs only to God (Ex. 3:14-15); but Jesus possesses aseity in Himself (John 5:26).
  • “Eternity”: Micah 5:2 prophesies of the coming Messiah to arise out of Bethlehem and says that He is “from everlasting”. See also Isaiah 9:6, John 1:1-2, and Hebrews 7:3.
  • “Immutability” (unchangeableness): Hebrews 13:8 ascribes to Jesus this immutability that is ascribed to Jehovah in Malachi 3:6.

Lastly we must consider Scripture’s witness showing that Jesus performed the works of God:

  • “Creation”: Proverbs 8:27-31 uses the archetype of wisdom to illustrate the Christ and says that “When God prepared the heavens, I was there”. In Isaiah 44:24-28 “the Redeemer” is the one who stretched out the heavens “alone” and spreads abroad the earth below. See Job 9:8; John 1:3, 10; 1 Co. 8:6; Hebrews 1:2, 3:3-4 for further study on Christ as the Creator.
  • “Judgment”: God alone may sit as the Judge to whom all things are accountable: Zechariah 14 foretells of the coming day of wrath and judgment that God will execute by “His right arm”. In Romans 14:10; 2 Cor. 5:10; and John 5:22, judgment is shown to be by Christ.

God’s word says in Romans 14:10 that we are all going to appear before the judgment seat of Christ to give an account of ourselves to Jehovah God, who alone is God. Every soul will witness to God without excuse having His varied testimony to mankind according to His perfect wisdom. When you stand before God, if you have not acknowledged that Jesus is the “I AM”, you will die in your sins (John 8:24).

For further consideration, please see these videos:


“Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” ~Isaiah 5:20


The Church has a responsibility to raise the voice of Truth in the midst of darkness; to warn and exhort against falsehood and deception even when the people seem hungry for it! Our responsibility to be the voice of Truth in our generation doesn’t diminish simply because the truth is not appreciated. Nor does this call contradict our responsibility to be peacemakers and healers; it is possible- indeed, even necessary- to speak the Truth in love and peace. But to raise the voice of truth requires an accurate conviction of the truth and the virtue necessary to stand immovable on the truth even when it is opposed by the majority.

As a result of prayer and a great deal of time studying how one must answer the challenges we face, I feel an obligation to offer my voice as one entreating the Church with warnings and exhortations against the deceptions being welcomed into our ranks; what little platform I have here, I will use to lift up the voice of Truth.


“Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.” ~Romans 13:1

Whether it is Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton that is elected, we can be sure that it is God who appointed them to office. All authority is God’s.

As Christians, we are called upon to live with this wisdom in mind. We are to let this wisdom guide us and direct our hearts; we are to submit to it by faith, and attend our ear to it for counsel.

There is, therefore, no doubt in my mind that God will have His way in November. My concern is for the way in which we are walking upon this earth as followers of Christ! I fear that the Church is being deceived about the nature of Donald Trump. We must not allow ourselves to be fooled.


Some have said we must vote for Donald Trump in order to prevent Hillary Clinton from getting into office.  They say “all that is necessary for an evil man to come to power is for good men to do nothing”; but might we not also say that “all that’s necessary for an evil person to come to power is for good people to pick between two evils”?

I believe our current events demand an alternative response from “good men and women”: I believe it is time for the Church to take an account of itself and repent for the sins that have caused breaches in our walls by which the enemy has flooded in!  We are flooded by carnal sins and apostasy; it is impossible to expect that we can fight any good fight in the political arena with such strangle-holds on the Church!

We need to acknowledge that God gave us a selection of fine men this year, and our nation abandoned them in favor of Donald Trump; we cannot blind ourselves to the fact that God is raising up judgment upon this nation either way we go.

I believe our only way forward is to specifically acknowledge our sins and repent; we must repair the breaches in our walls and drive out by the weapons of our warfare the enemy that has invaded our midst!

Then let us look to our State and local elections. But rest assured that if we do not repent and repair the breaches that are in our own walls, the corruption that has culminated in this years Presidential election will take over our State and local offices as well!


“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.” ~Galatians 6:7

The great deception that is blinding the Church is that we believe we can elect a wicked man or woman and reap a good harvest! Wicked leaders advance Satan’s cause; one leader might make the world more comfortable along the way than another, but both lead to the gates of Hell!  We’re placing our hope and trust in a wicked man, and that is folly!

Is Donald Trump a wicked man by God’s word?

Yes, by God’s word, he is a wicked man. Donald Trump has been unfaithfully divorced and remarried three times; God says that He hates divorce (Malachi 2:16) and it is adultery (Mark 10:11 cf 1 Corinthians 6:9). Trump has a very crude, profane, and filthy mouth. God’s word says “because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience” (Colossians 3:5-9). Trump is a pathological liar on the scale that even the media cannot keep up with him on it. Trump has openly supported murdering unborn children until very recently. By Trump’s lifestyle he has consistently denied Christ (Titus 1:16).

This is why I am deeply troubled when I hear Christians trying to say that Donald Trump is “a good man”; even comparing him to Cyrus or even Elijah! We must heed God’s warning from my opening verse from Isaiah 5:20. We must not call “evil” “good”. If we do we will find only destruction at the end.

The “Devil” is the “Devil” no matter whose mask he wears. I hope I’m clear in my meaning; not that either candidate is “the Devil”, but simply that they are both evil, regardless how they attempt to appear.

The Church must remember that we still have not seen any widespread repentance in this nation, neither by the unbelievers, nor by the Church. We simply are not going to incur blessing from God for this; rather, we will incur judgment!


My earnest prayer is for Donald Trump’s sincere repentance. I eagerly desire that Donald Trump would come to a true revelation of Jesus Christ and repent in His name for the salvation of his soul. But I will not buy into publicity shows and turn a blind eye to the fact that there has still been no manifest evidence of his repentance.

Let Donald Trump bear the fruits of repentance first, then our consciences can be confident in giving him our votes. But where is the fruit of his repentance? God does not diminish His standards just because of the high office someone holds.

I cringe when I hear the Church say “well he has publicly confessed Christ now”. This is one of the breaches that we must repair! We have diminished what it means to confess Christ to allow anyone that serves our own cause into the Church!


I believe there is a big difference between walking in the understanding that a President has been appointed by God- especially understanding that his appointment may be for judgment- and casting a vote of approval for him.  The Church must raise its voice for Truth, we cannot compromise our voice by promoting and supporting candidates who are wicked.  While we support every candidate in prayer, lawful obedience, and beneficial service wherever possible, we must not strengthen the hands of the wicked to do wickedly!

I have no hatred in my heart towards either candidate; I pray earnestly for both to uphold justice, equity, and truth. I pray that whoever is appointed to the Presidency by God may lead this nation in peace for the furtherance of the gospel world-wide. And I pray that both would come to a saving faith in Jesus Christ.

But I believe our first response must be inward; to acknowledge where we have allowed sin to breach our walls and repent so that we can repair these breaches that the Church may once again be a pillar of “truth” and “justice” in the world. Then I believe we must prove ourselves faithful with the local and State offices. We must demonstrate the moral fortitude and virtue necessary to successfully stand against the popular tides of sin in this nation. But more important than our involvement in the political arena- an area that I believe Christians should be involved in- is our involvement in our local communities as ambassadors for Christ!

This world has been “secularized” under the watch of the Church. What we are seeing today is the result of our decisions from yesterday. Unless we repent of yesterday’s sins, tomorrow will only be worse than today.

The Glory of Christ

I am yet again arrested in my study by the splendid contemplation of the glory of Christ!  And surely it is by the Spirit of Christ who dwells within me that I can sense Christ’s own zeal to reveal His glory to me! 

“Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with me where I am”, Jesus prayed, “that they may behold My glory…” (John 17:24)

I must wonder, do I know how strongly Christ desires to reveal His glory to me?  For surely if I knew, if I was really convinced and convicted that Christ longs for me to see His glory, I would be renewed in my faith daily and my love would not grow weary! 

But there is a terrifying thought that plagues my mind; it is more frightening than any other nightmare I have ever had: it is the thought that the human mind and human spirit might become altogether inhospitable to the glory of Christ!  What I mean by that is that the mind might become so inhospitable to the glory of Christ that it simply cannot endure the contemplation of His glory by faith anymore; that the human spirit might become altogether adverse towards the glory of Christ and could no longer abide before the face of Jesus Christ!  Oh God what a frightful thought! 

A second frightful thought to me is this; that some poor soul could hear what I’ve just said and be so unmoved as to say within themselves, “well I never think on the glory of Christ and I’m ok, so what’s the deal?”  That someone could come to the point of realization where they perceive that they do not think much on the glory of Christ and have such darkness in their mind so as to reassure themselves in this condition that they are still ok is a truly terrifying thought to me! 

What’s the big deal?”!  I’m not embellishing my speech right now; I really do have to ask myself how “carnal” and how “dark” have our minds become today that we are not struck by how little Jesus Christ is glorified in the Church. 

What’s the big deal?” is that God has divinely and extraordinarily shone in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of His glory in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 4:6); to glorify Jesus Christ is the great work of the Holy Spirit (John 16:14)!  And sometimes it seems like we don’t at all seem disturbed that Jesus is not being exalted and glorified among us!

I am not talking about the emotional experiences, exuberant demonstrations, or the magnificent performances that have become the cheap external substitutes for the glory of Christ in our day.  I am talking about the heart-bending, faith-building, strength-giving, hope-rising, love-purifying glory of Christ that captivates the soul with the beauty of His holiness!

John Owen wrote the following:

Let us live in the constant contemplation of the glory of Christ, and virtue will proceed from him to repair all our decays, to renew a right spirit within us, and to cause us to abound in all duties of obedience.

It will fix the soul unto that object which is suited to give it delight, complacency, and satisfaction… when the mind is filled with thoughts of Christ and his glory, when the soul thereon cleaves unto him with intense affections, they will cast out, or not give admittance unto, those causes of spiritual weakness and indisposition.

And nothing will so much excite and encourage our souls hereunto as a constant view of Christ and his glory. 1

1. The Glory of Christ, The Works of John Owen, ed. William H. Goold, 1850-53, (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth Trust, 1965), I, 460-461

I came across this quote from something John Piper wrote on the glory of Christ, and I cannot raise any more apt response from my heart than  “amen!”

The soul that is fixated on the glory of Christ is not so easily rattled!  Such a bond with Christ will, as Owen wrote, cast away or give no place to our spiritual weaknesses and indispositions.  But such a bond with Christ will also draw in and give sanctuary to those divine attributes of God that give us great spiritual strength and inclination that we find utterly lacking in our flesh!

Why, when such a delight awaits us in Christ, might we feel so burdened by deep contemplation of the glory of Christ? 

It may be that we are driving the Holy Spirit from His sanctuary in our heart.  Consider carefully Ezekiel 8:6 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-11,19 & 20.  If we drive the Spirit from the sanctuary of our heart by sin, we drive away Him who is appointed to glorify Christ from the very place in this fallen world where Christ’s glory is revealed! 

It may also be that we have not exalted God to glory in our own lives, nor have regarded Him as holy.  Consider carefully Leviticus 10:3.

Whatever we find that drives the glory of God from our minds so that His glory cannot abide long in our hearts and in our minds, my heart is stirred today to call on the Lord and ask for the grace of the Spirit to reveal Christ in glory to me!

“Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts…” (1 Peter 3:15)

Faithfulness v. Fruitfulness

I’ve been considering the question of “faithfulness” versus “fruitfulness” lately: specifically, whether it is more important to remain faithful to God’s Word or reap a fruitful harvest?

Now I’ll admit at the outset that I think this question presents a false dichotomy by forcing the mind to choose one or the other when I think it may well be that it is impossible to have either one without the other, but I believe this question should be thoroughly considered.

This question has become the center of a conversation that I’ve been engaging in with a pentecostal pastor friend of mine as we’ve been discussing it in light of two pastor friends of his that accentuate this concern for “fruitfulness” (defined as either “a harvest of believers”, or, “the increase given by God through the Holy Spirit”) over “faithfulness” (defined as “love for God as expressed in obedience and fidelity to His Word”).


One pastor who’s known as a man exhibiting great fruits of the Spirit in his life, recently came out in affirmation of gay marriage.

Although his decision has invoked the ire of many established Christians, it has also resulted in more opportunities to connect with people who are not typically touched by “the Church”.  For this pastor, affirming homosexuality has given his church the ability to reach a demographic that would otherwise never even affiliate with Christians who hold to what they see as an antiquated view of sexuality and marriage.


Another pastor, was preaching a sermon that included a note that homosexuality is wrong.  Through a series of events, a legal complaint was lodged and the pastor was warned that if he continued to preach hate speech he would be faced with potentially shutting down.

The pastor says he has temporarily decided to stop preaching on the matter and offered the justification that there are no gay members attending his church and it would be foolish to stop the work of God being done in this church.

The pastor went on to say that they baptized 100 people the previous month and he could not allow Satan to put a pad-lock on the door and shut the church down where they would not be able to reach the community.

I believe these realities are only going to get more onerous as time goes on. But what do they say about the topic of “fruitfulness” v. “faithfulness”?  Is fruitfulness apart from faithfulness ever warranted?  Or is faithfulness apart from fruitfulness ever possible?  These questions may often times appear more “behind the scenes” than most, but I believe they have great weight to them and need to be answered.


In both these true stories we see pastors pursuing “fruitfulness” above “faithfulness”, one by affirmation and the other by conformation.  But were these compromises acceptable?  And will they produce the desired results these pastors hoped for- namely, a greater harvest of souls?

A couple passages come to mind that I would like to examine:


Don’t be afraid of the things which you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested; and you will have oppression for ten days. Be faithful to death, and I will give you the crown of life.

I believe the seven churches of Revelation merit close examination by the Church today.  Regardless of your eschatological position on these seven churches, you will find great blessing in reading what Jesus has to say to these churches.

To the persecuted Church in Smyrna Jesus admonished them not to be afraid and forewarned them of the coming trials they would face; in light of these trials, Jesus promised “the crown of life” to the faithful.  The full weight of Jesus’ promised “crown of life” was placed on being faithful.

Jesus’ words to the churches in Ephesus, Pergamos, and Thyatira, show that Jesus does weigh our faithfulness to His doctrine; the Ephesians, despite all their hard work (2:3), had left their first love and were required to repent (2:4-5), and the Church in Pergamos needed to repent for embracing the doctrines of Balaam and the Nicolaitans (2:14-16); likewise the Church in Thyatira was admonished to repent for tolerating the false prophets who taught Christ’s people to commit sexual immorality (2:20-25).  In each case Jesus was concerned with faithfulness as demonstrated through love, doctrine, and prophesying.

Another passage that stirs my mind regarding this subject is as follows:

1st CORINTHIANS 3:11-15

For no one can lay any other foundation than that which has been laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 But if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay, or stubble; 13 each man’s work will be revealed. For the Day will declare it, because it is revealed in fire; and the fire itself will test what sort of work each man’s work is. 14 If any man’s work remains which he built on it, he will receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work is burned, he will suffer loss, but he himself will be saved, but as through fire.

We can build on Christ in such a way that will not endure the fire.  Though the craftsman suffers loss of reward because his work did not remain, the craftsman may still expect his salvation.  Through folly the craftsman selected wood, hay, or stubble over gold, silver, or precious stones- for whatever reason, the more easily obtainable former materials were more attractive than the more costly latter materials- and therefore the craftsman suffered the loss of all his work and the reward he so earnestly expected.

Make no mistake that I believe teachers can bring themselves under the wrath of God through their teachings- such as occurred in the Book of Revelation when the doctrine of Balaam was taught- but Christians may err in less serious ways that can still ruin their work without endangering their souls, especially those Christians who build on Christ but who do not hold teaching positions (which are judged more severely: James 3:1).  Excuse my run-on sentence there, but I’m just going to go with it.

My belief is that we must not abandon fidelity to God for perceived fruitfulness, which can only end in tears and great weeping.


I do not believe that it is possible for faithfulness to be without fruit.  It is possible for the faithfulness of “charity” not to produce the fruit of “evangelism”, and therefore to disappoint the expectations of the one who has such a narrow view of “fruit”, but faithfulness in “charity” will always bear the fruit of “charity”. 

There may, therefore, be a weight of burden on our expectation of “fruitfulness” that is inconsistent with the promise of Scripture, but, I believe it is impossible to divorce “faithfulness” from God’s promise of “fruitfulness”. 

We must heed the following Words of Christ:

JOHN 15:7-8 WEB

If you remain in me, and my words remain in you, you will ask whatever you desire, and it will be done for you.  In this is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit; and so you will be my disciples.

Fruitfulness requires faithfulness, and faithfulness is proved by fruitfulness.

A “morally pure church” may ask, “why, then, is there no increase in our body”, to which we should ask “did you abide in Christ’s word to ‘go out and make disciples’?”

A numerically “large church” may ask “why, then, are we so fruitful even though we do not keep His word”, to which we should ask, “what makes you so sure your fruitfulness will survive the fire?”

Fruitfulness is dependent on abiding faithfully in Jesus’ word; a church may not see the fruit of harvest because it does not go out, or, when it goes out and increases, it may not see the fruit of righteousness because it does not abide in the truth; but no church will be barren that faithfully abides in the Word. 

What we see being tested here are two things: firstly, our perception of fruit, and secondly, our faith that God will be faithful to honor faithfulness.  We so easily get confused and discouraged when we do not see the fruit of other parts of the body in our own life, and we wrestle with the faith to believe that God is faithful towards our faithfulness because we have usurped God as “lords of the harvest” and attempted to bear the weight of “fruitfulness” all on our own.

We need to know that it is “God who adds those who are being saved” (Acts 2:47); though one may sow and another waters, “it is God who gives the increase” (1 Corinthians 3:6)!  Rather than trying to control the outcome of the harvest, we desperately need to cry out to the LORD of the harvest (Matthew 9:38)- let us pray to Him concerning the harvest, knowing that He is faithful over it (1 Corinthians 1:9).


Something that I cannot get over is how many pastors I have met and held long conversations with who are beaten down and discouraged.  They are discouraged by their lack of growth, sometimes in both the harvest and in spiritual fruit, and they feel like they are utterly defeated; but I cannot escape the reality that without exception they are not abiding in Christ’s word to go out, nor are they calling on the Lord of the Harvest for help! 

Brethren, if we find our churches lay in spiritual desolation; arise!  Return to the truths from which you have wandered, and do them.  Bear the fruits of repentance and offer again the sacrifice of praise by the fruit of holy lips. 

And if we see that we have brought in no fruit of the harvest; arise!  Go out into the fields and labor.  Sow, water, and tend to the fields in which you live, and pray to the Lord of the Harvest, who will grant your increase that He may be glorified and that you may be His disciples! 

Persecution in Russia

This report came from Charisma News and was written by Jessilyn Jusitice. It details new legislation in Russia that will sweep Christian faith practices into “anti-terrorism” efforts. The Churches in Russia are calling for prayer and fasting- which, incidentally, will soon be illegal once this legislation goes into effect- and I want to encourage my brethren to share in prayer and fasting with them.


News Link:


Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an anti-terrorism law, but for the country’s many churches, the signature sparked a demand for prayer and fasting.

The bill toughens punishment for acts deemed to be terrorism and for the organization of “mass unrest,” according to the Los Angeles Times. It would also introduce prison sentences of up to a year for those who fail to report such crimes.

Furthermore, Great Commission Ministries Chairman Hanny Haukka tells Charisma News the law entails:

Foreign guests are not permitted to speak in churches unless they have a “work permit” from Russian authorities.

If a friend or relative from outside Russia wishes to share his/her faith in your home, the guest will be fined and expelled from Russia.

Any discussion of God with non-believers is considered missionary activity and will be punishable.

Missionary activity will be permitted by special government permission. Example: If one traveling on a train shares his faith without written permission the offender will be taken into police custody for the duration of the journey and will be fined 50,000 rubles ($1000).

Offenders from the age of 14 will be subject to prosecution.

Religious activity is no longer permitted in private homes. Most churches in Russia meet in homes.
Every citizen is obligated to report religious activity (of neighbors) to the authorities. Failure to be an informant is punishable by law.

One may pray, read the Bible at home but not in the presence of a non-believing person. You will be breaking the law and be punished.

If the church has purchased property it cannot be converted into a place of worship.

In church buildings it is not permitted to invite people to turn to God. Worship services are permitted but making a non-believer a follower of Christ is against the law.

In response, thousands of churches across the country have come together to cry out to God.

“The church is appalled at the news of the new law. About 7,000 evangelical/protestant churches are in fasting and prayer at the moment over the news,” Haukka tells Charisma News via email.

Churches aren’t the only residents enraged by the law.

American refugee Edward Snowden tweeted: “#Putin has signed a repressive new law that violates not only human rights, but common sense. Dark day for #Russia.”

What’s more, critics are now declaring the Yarovaya laws, aka the “Big Brother,” laws as a sign of the end times:

If these amendments come into force, prison sentences for certain non-violent “extremist” crimes will potentially be twice as long as, for example, murder committed in the heat of passion, which carries a maximum sentence of three years.
Despite receiving nearly unanimous support in parliament, the Yarovaya laws have triggered a flood of apocalyptic commentary. Many wonder why Russia’s already excessively harsh criminal laws are being made harsher.

The only official criticism of the legislation, however, has come from the Presidential Human Rights Council, which has highlighted ways in which the proposed amendments directly contradict the Constitution and existing laws. This criticism has been almost entirely ignored.

The Duma has already passed a number of laws that have harshened Russian law in the name of fighting terrorism and extremism. It criminalized “public calls for the violation of territorial integrity” and “rehabilitation of Nazism,” a direct affront to the freedom of speech. In 2013, it passed a law that allowed the state to confiscate property from individuals affiliated with terrorists, including their relatives.

The government has long used the “fight against terrorism and extremism” to justify repressive laws, no matter how obviously senseless they may be. As a result, Russia’s statutory framework can now be effectively used to target not only credible extremist threats, but also political opponents of the state. A large group of prominent Russian lawyers decried this problem in an open letter in 2013, saying that the “parliament’s legislative work has acquired a distinctly prohibitive and repressive character.”

In response, Haukka pleads with believers around the world to join with Russian churches in prayer and fasting.

“Russia is closing down in an awful way. The new law is in total conflict with the purpose and the task given to the church by the Lord. The law will send the church back into Soviet-era Communist persecution,” he says.

From The Evil One

“But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes’, and your ‘No’ be ‘No’.  For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.” ~Matthew 5:37

Jesus said empty and meaningless words are from the evil one.  They lend themselves to his purposes; to hypocrisy, lying, deceit, and an unstable mind. But our society is very comfortable with empty and meaningless words.  In fact, many of our social customs are built on them! 

Once we become accustomed to speaking meaningless words, and we get comfortable with the idea that our word is empty, we pave the way for all kinds of evil; we can “let slip” all kinds of malicious, slanderous, and evil speech against our neighbors and our brethren, and we allow Deceit to plot a course straight through our heart because we believe that we can speak one thing, and do another! 

I believe one day on the day of judgment that all these “little commandments” that we ignored will be revealed in glory as the pure wisdom of God!  Yes, I believe every Word of God will be exalted in its due glory, and we will look at these “little commandments” and lament for what we have lost because we did not give them a proper ear!

Moses was a man “slow of speech” (Ex. 4:10), yet the heavens listened when he spoke because he proclaimed the name of the LORD (Deut. 32:1, 3); so also ought it to be with the Church who are charged by the intent of God that His manifold wisdom might be made known to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places (Eph. 3:10)!

It may be that the reason we the Church often ignore this commandment is because we do not know that the altar of our lips are holy to God.  Perhaps we have not yet consecrated our lips unto the Lord, nor understood the power of our words.  Indeed, what is so grievous about the “Word Faith” movement is that they have so defiled the teaching that our words are holy, that many in the Church cannot receive God’s Word on the subject!  Their judgment is just.

“Then those who feared the LORD spoke to one another, and the LORD listened and heard them; so a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the LORD and who meditate on His name.” ~Malachi 3:16

Much of God’s message has been lost because the Church no longer understands the beauty of holiness!  We do not get what it means that we have been purchased by the blood; that we are not our own, but His (1 Cor. 6:20).  Therefore, our words are common, and our praise profane (James 3:10).

May I exhort the brethren, then, to consecrate the altar of worship as holy unto God.  Let your words be pure and full, that you may proclaim the name of the Lord, amen!


“But above all, my brethren, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or with any other oath.  But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes’, and your ‘No’ be ‘No’, lest you fall into judgment.” ~James 5:12

The Preacher

What is a preacher?  What’s the function of a preacher?

I think it’s helpful when discussing different parts of the body to reiterate that the Body is healthiest when every part works together with the whole towards faithfulness to Christ (Ephesians 4:16). Every member is vital to the healthy functioning of the Body as a whole.  But what happens when the multiplicity of Body parts stops working in unison and the Body begins to be deceived and led astray?

God sends His preachers to call the Body back into the way.

“Preachers” come in many different forms- they are not a stagnant office.  Preachers are those God entrusts to deliver His message to His people; there have been many preachers in scripture called to be deliver God’s word; Solomon (Ecc. 1:1, 12); Noah (2 Peter 2:5); Jonah (3:1-2); John the Baptist (Mark 1:4); and Jesus (Mark 4:17). The apostle Paul wrote, “for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle—I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying—a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth” (1 Timothy 2:7 and 2 Timothy 1:11).

Anyone can be called by God to be a preacher because “preaching” is simply “the act of exhorting, prophesying, reproving, or teaching”. That’s why we have Solomon, who was a king, but also a preacher. Noah, who was a patriarch (essentially an elder), but was also a preacher. Jonah was a prophet, but also a preacher. Paul, who was an apostle as well as a teacher, also identified himself as one “appointed as a preacher”.

The preacher is a functional position, not a stagnant office.  The preacher is known for his message, not his presentation or charisma. For the preacher, nothing is more important than what he has to say from God.  He never speaks for himself.  He is God’s messenger, and God’s messenger alone.

I believe the Church needs God-sent preachers today.  But where are these voices calling us back to God through repentance?

In view of the great evil’s in our society today, the lack of such voices crying out should be cause of grave concern and trembling!  It should drive every one of us to our knees daily, begging God to send out His servants to give us another chance to repent!

A ministry of faith