Follow me? Meme’s and Me Me

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facebook

A few months ago, I took the first steps, like a crack addict or an alcoholic breathing in a bag, I admitted I was addicted to Facebook. A couple days ago I hit delete and let the DT’s begin.

I started realizing that I was carrying my phone with me like I would a 3-month-old baby and not getting much accomplished with my writing.

I’d scroll through Facebook while I drank my coffee in the morning. I’d scroll while my husband drove me to my doctor appointment. No need to look out the window, that’s too boring, right? If the conversation at dinner or even an outing was too boring I’d see what the latest update was.

I read blogs, researched doctrines, studied history, and opened Wikipedia. I learned about racial tension, global warming, corrupt politicians, digestion tips, natural medicine, and church decline in America. I had a wealth of information at my fingertips and yes my brain was rapidly eating and absorbing, but what about my spirit man?

So the other day, while I was fed-up with yet another political rant and even more so with my addictive behavior, I disconnected my Facebook.  It felt so liberating, that I swiftly went to work removing over 500 people from my Twitter account. My husband shook his head. “Why would you do that honey, aren’t you supposed to be getting people to follow you, by following them? Don’t you want to sell books? ”

But you see, I don’t care anymore if they follow me or I follow them. What does “follow” mean? It’s when one has a body of supporters or admirers. If the whole world admires me and yet, the Lord Adonai does not know me, what have I gained?

If I follow HIM, the One who Created it all, He will lead me and guide me where I am supposed to be. He created men and gave them gifts. How do I know this?

“See, I have called by name Bezalel, the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah. “I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds of craftsmanship, to make artistic designs for work in gold, in silver, and in bronze, and in the cutting of stones for settings, and in the carving of wood, that he may work in all kinds of craftsmanship. Exodus 31:3-5.

These men did not have to get a few thousand Twitter followers or Facebook friends to do what they were BORN to do. No. All they had to do was wait for their gift to make room for them.

Why would over fifty people in one day, take the time to copy and send me a letter they’ve drawn up and ask me to “Please follow them on Twitter?” Like them on Facebook, follow their blog, follow their podcast, and follow their book, film, movie, brand, product, politician, and ministry? Why? Because of our obsession with becoming known, famous, liked, wealthy, understood, and so forth. Jesus-Yeshua healed a man who didn’t even know his name or who he was.   “But the man who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had slipped away while there was a crowd in that place.” John 5:13.

 

I want to slip away and work on my spirit man, not my flesh man. My spirit man needs meditation, drinking in the earth and the beauty of the Creators artwork. My Spirit needs to help make things better without having to advertise who I helped or how I helped or what I did. My Spirit needs to take the time to connect with my sons, my family, and my community instead of a Meme, an empty text stating my political or religious belief. My spirit needs to talk to my Maker and actually LISTEN and wait for Him to speak back. My spirit needs rain and humbleness and joy. Becoming the next famous author could be the biggest curse to ever fall on me or my seed.

The things and people we spend our time on tell us a lot about who we are and who we want to impress. Yes, your gift may be your voice, your words, the creative shark brand you’re selling, but could it transpire behind the scenes?

I once had a dream that someone very important was coming to one of my book events. The dream was so real I told my husband about it. I even asked him if he thought the dream was prophetic. I pondered the possibility that there would be an agent there, or a publisher or even my all-time dream of meeting a producer who wanted to make my novel into a movie! I remember waiting and watching the people who showed up. I secretly told a friend about my dream, as she and her husband have a similar desire to see their novel on the big screen.

I had surgery a week or so prior to the book signing. During the event, I was in my motorized scooter, weak, fatigued and feeling like death. That evening at the restaurant /lounge area, I met a broken soul who was ready and prepared to take his life the next day. Only thing was I had no idea. I was able to listen to him and his stories, pray with him and share a laugh or two. I was able to learn from him and he was able to learn from me. We both cried tears. We prayed aloud at a bar table. I held his hand and he held mine, my husband’s hands placed over the top of ours. The next day I was sent a long email about the plans he had for the day…plans to take his own life. He said he felt better now. He felt ready to tackle some things, change some things, and move forward. He said he felt something as we prayed that he couldn’t describe with words.

I cried reading his letter because it gave me hope. My physical body was broken but my spirit met his spirit and we made a connection and The Father’s Holy breath blew through the room. His Spirit. I shared the experience with the same friend I mentioned above. She said, “But you knew someone important was coming!” YES, Someone IMPORTANT had shown up at my event and I’ll take that over fame and fortune every day of the week!

This is what matters. It’s not how many likes we get or how many times a week we sit on a church pew or whether we know the difference in Easter and Ishtar, Tammuz and First Fruits. Yes, it helps to be taught right truths, but it helps more to be a person who does Torah, not just knows what it is. James said, “But prove yourselves doers of the word and not merely hearers who delude themselves.” 1:22. Our self-importance can delude us into thinking we are important, intelligent, right, biblically sound, politically correct, and need to help people who are not quite as smart as us by posting our meme’s, our views, and our truths. Our self-importance can delude us into thinking that our relationship with Him is just fine.

Is it easier for a person like me, who has autoimmune disorders to minister from my phone or my PC? Yes, but there is something called sunlight, human touch, nature, ministering unto Elohim, our Abba Father and balance.  Yeshua told Martha that she was busy doing many things, but that Mary had chosen something better. What was that? She was sitting at His feet, drinking in His wisdom and restoring her soul. Good Shepherds lead their sheep to water and feed them good food. Follow Him and His voice for it will surely drown out the silence and bring more joy than any meme ever could. Because meme is sort of like “I” phone, it’s about “me” “Me”…Yes, and you and I can still have an online presence and be in His presence. Balance my friends, balance.

Angry Young Man

angry young

Oh angry young man with your feet in your shoes

And your fist in your HANDS…

Won’t you tell me,

Where are you going, angry young man?

 

You walk with a sting of rebellion and rage

As the asphalt slaps the stride of your gait.

 

And the nape of your nose bores into the sun

As you wrinkle your scowl at what they’ve become,

It’s everything you’re not…

And the festering boils from the stench of your past

Waltz up to enchant you and offer a dance.

Why can’t you move forward?

Your pride will not bend.

And now you have pissed all your prizes to the wind.

With a chest puffed out wide and shoulders, you’ve chipped

Oh, angry young man your sail has a ship.

And a baggage claim tag too large to behold

Is weighing you down

As your hands fold.

 

If you would only look at creation and notice that it breathes

Swaying colors of green with a sprinkle of gold,

A teardrop of amber and a breeze blowing bold…

All God’s creation sings, yes it shouts!

If only you knew what the world was about.

 

Take away your titles, your money, and all your earthly dreams…

Then gaze into the mirror and grasp

What you are without your material clout.

 

Not what they tell you

The world that is…

But HE who formed you, the one who says, “Be still.”

Splash the Word on your numb and wake up the sleepy man.

Shake off the chip on your shoulder,

Shake off the blood from your hands.

 

Take away the swine flesh that you eat

And bow lowly before the feet…

Of the one, the whole world will bow to.

Take off the unholy, take off your shoes.

 

For the ground you are on is Sanctified…

And the pride will become liquefied,

Run down into the ground and dissipate.

Take off the unholy son before it’s too late.

Part #2 Free chapter on Hell

 

fire-10-620x330

Part # 2

Yes, we must look at this topic of hell thoroughly.  I believe you and I should dig in and rip through verse after verse because after all we or a loved one may be going there to dwell in torment. If indeed our sister, brother, son or daughter are headed to a place of torment, shouldn’t we do more to prevent this?  I want to start out with a study of our first word “hell”. Below is a graph that list the year, version and the totality of times hell is mentioned in each version.

Year AD BIBLE VERSION OT NT Total
400 The Latin Vulgate 87 24 111
1611 King James Version 31 23 54
1884 Hanson’s New Covenant n/a 0 0
1891 Young’s Literal Translation 0 0 0
1900 Twentieth Century New Testament n/a 0 0
1901 American Standard Version 0 13 13
1902 Rotherham’s Emphasized Bible 0 0 0
1903 Weymouth’s New Testament n/a 0 0
1917 Jewish Publication Society Bible OT 0 n/a 0
1942 Emphatic Diaglott Greek/English-Int. n/a 0 0
1952 Revised Standard Version 0 17 17
1976 Restoration of Original Sacred Name 0 0 0
1978 New International Version 0 14 14
1982 New King James Version 19 13 32
1983 Concordant Literal NT n/a 0 0
1998 Tanakh/The Complete Jewish Bible 0 n/a 0
2004 Holman Christian Standard Bible 0 12 12

 

Now, we know that there must be a reason why some bibles have more passages that say hell and others that don’t. If you think this is a ploy from Satan himself, bear with me as we muddle through this with are BRAIN CAPS on tight. If you look at the graph above you will notice something rather interesting. The King James Version and the Latin vulgate are the only versions that have the word hell listed in the Old Testament. The original Hebrew Bible does not list the word hell one time. I repeat, do the research, HELL IS NOT FOUND in the entirety of the Old Testament, but neither is everlasting. I did not say hell does not exist, I merely stated it’s not in the original Old Testament text. Remember, I am not talking about the lake of fire but a word study.

In order to take you through the Old Testament and The King James references, first, we need to go over the word “hell”.

The word Sheol was translated as hell by the King James translators. According to the dictionary, sheol means “the place of the dead” or “the place of departed souls/ spirits. The word sheol is really a word that stands for the STATE of the dead. The New Testament Greek word for hell is the word hades which also is referring to the PLACE of the DEAD. In the New Testament the Greek word Gehenna is used for “hell” and comes from the Hebrew word Hinnom.

I don’t want you to take my word for anything so I am going to go over a portion of these verses with you and you will see that to replace the word with “a Lake of fire” will not make sense but when we replace it with “the grave or Sheol” it does.

There are 31 texts where Sheol is translated as hell. Anytime you see the word hell in the Old Testament it is talking about sheol or hades. Both these words are interchangeable and mean the same thing, a place of the dead.

“The sorrows of hell compassed me about; the snares of death prevented me;” 2nd Samuel 22:6. This scripture is one where David is telling of all the battles The Lord brought him through. Verse one says, “David sang to the Lord the words of this song when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul” NIV.   In order to understand that David is just talking about the grave, and how Saul wanted to kill him, we have to look at the whole passage. Let’s start with chapter 22:4-7.

“I called to the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and have been saved from my enemies.

The waves of death swirled about me; the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me. The cords of the grave (translated Hell in KJV) coiled around me; the snares of death confronted me. “In my distress I called to the Lord; I called out to my God. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came to his ears”.

We know, logically that Saul could not place David in the lake of fire, for Saul is not God and further the passage doesn’t make sense when rendered as hell (lake of fire). I am NOT SAYING HELL DOESN’T EXIST, I’m just trying to bring understanding to this type of doctrine and what the word hell means in the text.  Again, I am not talking about a lake of fire or a baptism of fire, but a sheol.

The next verse I want you to look at is Psalm 16:10, “For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption” KJV. This passage is referring to the one and only Yeshua/ Jesus and how His Father would not let his body decay but would raise Him from the dead. A better and closer interpretation is rendered in the NAS version which says, “For You will not abandon MY SOUL TO SHEOL; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo DECAY”…

In the book of proverbs, several chapters deal with a man and a harlot or wayward women. These verses I will post from each chapter below with the King James Version depicting hell.

“Her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell” Proverbs 5:5.

“Her house is the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death” Proverbs 7:27.

“But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell” Proverbs 9:18.

When you read about this adulterous woman in Proverbs chapter two, she has forsaken the covenant she made in her youth to her husband and her path leads down to the dead. If hell is death then the verse above from Proverbs 7:7 explains perfectly. Let’s reread that one, ““Her house is the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death”… Does hell go down to the chambers of death? Yes, it does, because sheol from where this word originated is talking about the abode of the dead. Most of these scriptures have been twisted to fit properly. It’s like quoting from proverbs, “Wine is a mocker” Proverbs 20:1… Does wine actually mock people in a literal sense or is the bible often using symbolisms? Exactly, put the thinking caps on tighter! The Bible uses white hair as a symbol of wisdom. It uses the wind, fire and a dove as symbols for the Holy Spirit. Most of the time the Bible will give us the interpretation of the symbols, like it does here in Revelations, “As for the mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand, and the seven golden lampstands, the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches” 1:20 ESV.  So lampstands represent churches but what do lakes of fire represent? We will get there in a bit.

Take out a concordance and carefully read each verse from The Old Testament that uses the word “hell” and you will see this is talking about something different than a lake of fire and a lot of times it is a symbol to express something else. I will give one more example taken from Jonah.  “Then Jonah prayed unto the LORD his God out of the fish’s belly, And said, I cried by reason of mine affliction unto the LORD, and he heard me; OUT OF THE BELLY OF HELL cried I, and thou heardest my voice” Jonah 2:1-2 KJV.   Jonah was not in hell but in the belly of a fish. He thought his life was ending and cried out to God to save him.  Let’s look at a few more verses from Jonah. “The engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; SEAWEED was wrapped around my head. To the roots of the mountains, I sank down; THE EARTH beneath barred me in forever. But you, Lord my God, brought my life up from the pit” 2:5-6 NIV. Jubilee Bible says, “…Yet thou hast brought up my life out of the grave, O LORD my God” 2:6. Jonah was in the ocean with seaweed and the ocean enclosed him. He even described it as a pit but this is not hell.

The pit, hell, and the lake of fire are not one in the same. Many words are used over and over again in the Bible to describe things. Let me give you another example: Most Christians who have been studying their bibles for any length of time have heard the verse from Hebrews 4:12, which I am going to partially post here. It says, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword…” KJV. Something interesting you may have overlooked is the Bible also describes the end of a harlot with the same metaphors. Proverbs 5:3-4 says, “For the lips of a strange woman drop as a honeycomb, and her mouth is smoother than oil: But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword” KJV.  Symbols and metaphors are very common in this book.

There are about 31 texts where the word Sheol is translated as grave.  Let’s look at something else interesting about this abode of the dead. This next passage will require a tad more reading but I think it will be worth it. Job begins to wish he were dead because his pain is so great and as he wishes for death he gives us a great description of who are found in sheol, hades and this mistranslated place called hell…

“Why did I not perish at birth, and die as I came from the womb? Why were there knees to receive me and breasts that I might be nursed? For now, I would be lying down in peace;

I would BE ASLEEP and at rest with KINGS and rulers of the earth, who built for themselves places now lying in ruins, with PRINCES who had gold, who filled their houses with silver. Or why was I not hidden away in the ground like a stillborn CHILD, like an infant who never saw the light of day? There the WICKED CEASE FROM TURMOIL, and there the WEARY ARE AT REST. CAPTIVES also enjoy their ease; they no longer hear the slave driver’s shout. The small and the great are there, and the slaves are freed from their owners” Job 3:11-17 NIV.

If you noticed in the text above, we see the Kings and Rulers, Slaves, the innocent stillborn child beside the wicked RESTING and obviously, they are at peace because it said, “the weary are at rest”.  Yes, they all are laying in rest until THAT DAY, AT THE LAST TRUMP, which I went over in the chapter on heaven. These scriptures in Job about hell are actually talking about the grave and as you can see no one was burning in flames back then, not the slave driver or the wicked who have ceased from chaos. The wicked were said to be resting and not burning.

In the next portion, we will look at the origins of the word “hell” and also a place called Tartarus.

 

 

 

 

Free Introductory Chapter on Hell

doc of demons pt 3

 

Many are not aware that the apostle Paul wrote around 1/3rd of the New Testament, but not once did he mention hell. Are the lost ones who died last year burning right now? Many theologians say yes they are. They even teach that someone who died in the year, say, 346 A.D have been burning ever since. It’s 2016 folks. That’s a lot of torment! If that is truly what happens shouldn’t we be snatching people with dire warnings? In part 3 of Doctrines of Demons I expound on two topics that many know little about, heaven and hell.

HERE’S A FREE INTRODUCTORY CHAPTER ON HELL AND IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN READING DOCTRINES OF DEMONS PART 1 OR 2 YOU CAN FIND THEM HERE AND HERE.

Hell and Fire

Chapter # 8

 

 

Hell is a fascinating topic and one in my opinion that has been misconstrued more than any other biblical doctrine. It is my hope that after reading these chapters you acquire revelation and discernment about a place that many of us have envisioned as a lake robust with flames licking and sweltering the most hideous humans to ever walk the earth. Yes, it often has given men comfort to envision the likes of Hitler, Nero, Osama Bin Laden, and every other evil dictator engulfed in fiery torment. Most all of us have seen a child molester or an evil murderer, animal torturer, or rapist, and longed secretly in our hearts that they burn in hell forever and EVER. Yet, when it comes to envisioning ourselves do we gage the meter in our favor? What about our stubborn uncle whose been known to drink too much and at times curses like a sailor? Or perhaps we have a son or daughter who is an all-around good person. They are caring, loving, and take in strays for pets, but they’re just not sure God exist?  Will they too burn forever in this lake of fire and brimstone? Are the lost ones who died last year burning right now? Many theologians say “yes, they are.” They even teach that someone who died in the year 346 A.D has been burning ever since. Its 2017 folks! That’s a lot of torment. If that is truly what happens shouldn’t we be snatching people with dire warnings? I think most of you have seen from our prior teaching on heaven, that more than likely no one is burning yet.

 

Will The Body of Yeshua be cleaned up during the Tribulation? Think about the person you met at your job that you loved and became friends with—one who never understood the Bible, was raised Hindu, Buddhist, or in bondage like certain denominations. Perhaps, they just had a mixed opinion about religions. Now picture them dying in a car crash. Were they instantly burning in flames and torment? Most teach they will go to hell forever because they have been given free will. The message I heard repeatedly was one that insinuated that God does not want any to suffer burning in hell, and that is why He sent His Son to die. When people reject His Son they willfully are making a choice and choosing to not accept Him.

There are over 7 billion people on this planet and every day over 150,000 deaths occur. Statistics show one child every 5 seconds dies of hunger. What’s that have to do with hell? A hell of a lot. Pun intended.  Yeshua tells a story about sheep and goats in Mathew chapter twenty-five.  This next parable explains something that should cause us all to look deeper at our pocket books and our hearts. The passage is over ten verses but they hold much truth about who is going to get a ticket into the gates of the city and who is not.

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. for I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

“They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

“He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”  Matthew 25:34-46 NIV.

 

This whole passage says nothing about asking Jesus into our heart or going to ‘church’ every week. It says He is going to judge a people by their actions. Yes, no one can boast about salvation or earn it—it’s a free gift by faith through grace so that no single one of us can boast, but we need to look at other verses like the one above.

Many people think that everyone in the world has heard and knows about Yeshua/ Jesus by now. I mean most people have a computer right? Wrong, and only about 35 % of the world has internet access.  The numbers are staggering when it comes to statistics of people reached with the Gospel. One sights statistics said that 86 % of Muslims, Buddhist, and Hindus do not know a Christian–not even one. Not even one! The numbers also suggest that there may be as many as 2 billion people who have never heard about Jesus/ Yeshua and His Words that brings life more abundantly.  Will those ignorant people be held accountable? Will they burn in hell forever or until the ages? Even the most famous Scripture on salvation says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” John 3:16 NASB.  Perish is Strong’s 7 abad for destroy—perish. Further details give way to more hidden meanings. A primitive root; properly, to wander away, i.e. Lose oneself; by implication to perish (causative, destroy) — break, destroy(- uction), + not escape, fail, lose, (cause to, make) perish, spend, X and surely, take, be undone, X utterly, be void of, have no way to flee.”

 

Let’s look at the definition of “perish,” according to Merriam Webster, “Perish means to die or be killed–to disappear or be destroyed–to cease to exist.”  So which one is it? Is it death or everlasting torment?  “”He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” John 3:36 NASB.

 

Indeed, what will happen to the people in other countries who know nothing about the Messiah, Jesus/ Yeshua, but instead are taught Islam, Hindu, and other religions of this world from birth? What about a faithful Rabbi who loves God’s word but has not been awakened yet to Yeshua/ Jesus as the Messiah? Will he too be tormented forever even though Yeshua said He was the Word made flesh and many devout Jews are upholding each Commandment with all their might?

When Jesus was beaten unrecognizable and crucified with common thieves did He say, “Father may these people burn forever in flames for what they have done to me?”  Or did He say, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.?” Luke 23:34” KJV.  I saw a man on television a couple years ago who had been run out of his home with his family and fled to the mountains with nothing due to the Terrorist group known as ISIS. He was in tears. Looking into the camera lens in the words of Yeshua, he said, “Forgive them for they know not what they do.” Humbleness. Yet many things taught on hell have made me shudder. The most recent was a video made by a young girl who says Jesus/ Yeshua took her to hell and that she had seen demons cutting and stabbing people and tormenting them. She painted pictures of all the sights she experienced in this place called hell. She claims she saw men on crucifixion stakes with vices griping their private parts, and she had painted blood coming from this area in her drawings. These were men who had committed adultery or had lustful sins of the flesh. She explained they would be tormented forever. What many have described as hell is so fascinating to me because much of it cannot be found in Scripture. Not only that, but I hear people proclaiming hell and how others are going to burn if they don’t accept Jesus/ Yeshua, and yet they never seem worried that they might go there. No, it never pertains to their condition, as if they were Mother Teresa–who by the way was also flesh.  Have you ever sat and pondered just what a person burning forever would look like let alone feel like? Whenever I brought this topic up in the past I was met with a shrug of the shoulders and a proclamation of, “It’s their fault, they should get saved!”

My husband, a retired police officer, was off duty in his police car, headed to the gym one evening, when he came upon an accident. A semi-tractor trailer had rear ended a vehicle on the expressway and the car was engulfed in flames. My husband got out of his car and the truck driver was in a panic. His fire extinguisher had done nothing to save the man in the car.  He had rear ended a corrections officer and rounds of ammo had started going off in what was left of the trunk, even though the trunk was literally gone. The reason the man was hysterical was he had watched this man burn to a char, screaming in agony and could do nothing to get him out of the car. By the time my husband got there, he was long gone. “That horrific torture is just part of the package when you don’t accept Christ,” many evangelist will tell you with a grin on their face. They even proclaim a person doesn’t burn up to ashes but just continues baking over an open flame. They declare the prayer of salvation is the key out of this hot house. Still, Jesus/ Yeshua’s said that many did not feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and so forth and that was the reason he did not know them.  Sadly, many Pastors and teachers explain that a young boy in Asia just didn’t get lucky enough to be born into a Christian nation. Or their cousin Tom is just too hard hearted and deserves such hell. Yes, they deserve to burn in flames forever they exclaim, never really considering what that might look like.  Hopefully, you dear reader have already completed part #2 of this series and have a better understanding on salvation.

In our next portion, we will look at some extremely popular writers who have envisioned heaven and hell and influenced our thinking in ways most would have never dreamed possible. Inferno is the first portion of a poem written by Dante Alighieri’s in the 14th century. The poem, an epic creation of thoughts and grand design to arouse audiences of all ages has given most of us a visual of what we perceive heaven and hell to be. It was given the title Divine Comedy for those of you who want to read or research it. This was followed by Purgatorio and Paradiso–meaning purgatory and Paradise. Dante’s poetry was so powerful the church took it and ran with it. Let’s see if we can unravel a little more of the doctrines of man that have crept in and get back to the truth of Yeshua!

 

 

Sources:

Life and death http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/

 

http://www.mutualresponsibility.org/science/the-world-weve-made-every-5-seconds-a-child-dies-from-malnutrition-and-hunger

 

Starvation rates Unicef.org

 

Statistics for the number of Muslims and Buddhist never hearing of Yeshua

https://joshuaproject.net/resources/articles/has_everyone_heard

The Joshua Project.

 

Weakness is a Blessing

By: Tekoa Manning

Can I ask you to think about your greatest weakness for a moment? Now, can I invite you to look at some things Jesus, Yeshua, did that I find mesmerizing, that might be encouraging to you?

There was a man in the book of John, who was born blind. He sat and begged daily for money. As Jesus and some of his men passed by they had a question: “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he would be born blind?” Awe yes, men seem to affiliate sin with sickness. Everything bad seems to be blamed on the person with the ailment, or the adversary, but what if the person with the affliction is special, set apart even, and called to do a manner of work?

Jesus answered his men in this manner, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him,” John 9:3. Troubling, that we think we know God’s ways by what man has taught us. Even Moses who had issues speaking well was told something very interesting when he complained about the assignment God had given him.

Let’s look at that. “Then Moses said to the LORD, ‘Please, Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither recently nor in time past, nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.’ The LORD said to him, ‘Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes him mute or deaf, or seeing or blind? Is it not I, the LORD?’” Exodus 4:10-11 NASB.

Many well-meaning Christians blame blindness on Satan, both in the natural and the spiritual, but I believe our afflictions may be trying to tell us something greater. Could The Lord Adonai take all our frailty and use it for His glory? Of course! He could and He does.

Now what I find mesmerizing in the story of Jesus healing the blind man is when the text says He spat on the ground. His saliva and dirt made magic, but then again His Father created man out of the same dirt. Not only did Jesus form mud and apply it to the blind man’s eyes, but also He commanded him to go wash in a pool of water named Siloam. This water was where the Priest filled their golden pitchers and on the Feast of Tabernacles, they poured this water out over the altar.

Now, we see God using a man that lived his whole life in total darkness, on a side street, with a cup, begging, suddenly become whole, in such an astonishing way that all the people in the community see! When the religious leaders questioned and tried to find excuses, the once blind man answers them in this manner, “Since the beginning of time it has never been heard that anyone opened the eyes of a person born blind.” John 9:32.

With Moses, God took a man with problems speaking and used his voice to lead a nation. With the blind man, God used him to confound the wise and show the works of God… and our God is a God of works!

I want to tell you today that whatever your weakness, or what looks like a curse to others, is exactly what Jesus will use for His Glory, and rightly so. He has never used prideful, puffed up folks. Actually, Paul was given a thorn in his flesh, to keep him humble! The important thing we must remember is- our curse may indeed be a blessing and our greatest strength!

“For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God.” 1 Corinthians 1:26-29 NASB.

 

Photo Cred: Lukas Budamaier

about the authorTekoa Manning is the author of two fiction works, Polishing Jade & Walter the Homeless Man. After a neurological illness left her disabled and eventually homeless, Tekoa began to channel her creativity into writing and devouring the Word of Yahweh. She is the wife of a retired police chief and the mother of three sons. Tekoa and her husband reside in a small town in KY. The pen name Tekoa means Trumpet, the instrument that unites people at a sudden impulse.

You can find out more about Tekoa and her writing endeavors at tekoamanning.com