Reaching the unseen

REACHING THE UNSEEN IN 2016

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REACHING THE WORLD FOR JESUS

May God bless the Pastors and Bible Teachers all over the world, we thank God that Sermons to the World is now reaching 148 countries and all 50 States and The District of Columbia in the U.S.

MISSION

Mission: To be a resource to Pastors and Bible teachers in spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world. – Sermons to the World

VISION STATEMENT

Vision: To reach the world on the internet to fulfill the command of Jesus in Matthew 28:19-20 – “to go into all the world and teach all nations”.

Welcome to our New Site

We welcome you to see our New Website http://sermonstotheworld.org.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

GOD WILL SHOW YOU THE WAY


“GOD WILL SHOW YOU THE WAY”
by Pastor Mark Taylor

“And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, This is the way, walk in it, when you turn to the right hand and when you turn to the left” (Isaiah 30:21).

The God we serve is not someone who has left us to guess about important decisions in our lives.  All through the Bible He has given us examples of how he led both individuals and nations in specific directions.   “Truly I see that God is no respecter of persons” (Acts 10:34).  These examples can give us the confidence that He is still leading those who wish to receive His help and guidance.

In the New Testament Jesus reminded His disciples that He could make a way for them also: “Thomas said to Him, Lord, we do not know where You go, and how can we know the way? Jesus said to him, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father but by Me” (John 14:5-6).  


You and I face many important decisions in our lives.  Sometimes we are not sure which way to turn.  Sometimes we face roadblocks to our dreams and goals.  
I would like to encourage you today to trust the Lord in helping you make a way to accomplish God’s will in your life.

I usually pray this prayer when I am trying to “find the way”:  “Lord if this (thing, goal, desire) is your will for me, open the door and allowed me to go through it.  Give me the wisdom and confidence from the Holy Spirit to know that my desires are in line with your will for my life.  Lord, if this desire is not your will, please lock the door so that I cannot go through it.  Keep me from making a wrong decision that will cause me problems.”  

Sometimes we find ourselves in difficulty because of making wrong decisions.
Then I pray as our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ did: “If you would be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but yours, be done.” (Luke 22:42).  

Sometimes the Lord removes it from me, and sometimes He reminds me of what He told Paul when he prayed for healing: “For this thing I besought the Lord three times, that it might depart from me. And He said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore I will rather glory in my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may overshadow me” 
(2 Corinthians 12:8-9).

As one song put it: “Sometimes He calms the storm, and sometimes He calms me.”

One thing we can count on is that God is with us and wants to lead us and make a way for us to become victorious even in difficult times.  Even if you are suffering from bad relationships, poor financial decisions, or health problems remember God’s words of encouragement to us: “No temptation has taken you but what is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted above what you are able, but with the temptation also will make a way to escape, so that you may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).  Go to God in prayer.  Ask Him to give you the faith to endure your hardship until He makes the way.

Jesus said this about our life on earth: “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).  And we are reminded by God’s Word that even when things are going bad for us God will make a way for it to become good: “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).

God has not only made a way for us to make it through this lifetime, but has made a way for us to go to Heaven. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).  If you will give your life to Christ, He will make a way for you to go to a real place, with real people, and experience the real presence of God: “But as it is written, Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor has it entered into the heart of man, "the things which God has prepared for those who love Him" (1 Corinthians 2:9).


God also wants to use you to make a way for others.  You have been given gifts and abilities you can use in service for God.  “Give, and it shall be given to you, good measure pressed down and shaken together and running over, they shall give into your bosom. For with the same measure that you measure, it shall be measured to you again” (Luke 6:38).  Every time you do something for someone else they receive a blessing and so do you.  There are people today that need you today.  It may be something as simple as a kind word or an act of kindness. It may be something that requires your time, money, and talents.  If God lays something on your heart, He is expecting you to do it.  And in many cases, if you don’t do it, it want get done.  

God is going to make a way for you today.  “He gives power to the weary; and to him with no vigor; He increases strength. Even the young shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall; but those who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint” (Isaiah 40:29-31).



Tuesday, June 13, 2017

FATHER'S DAY MESSAGE

“Our Father Who Is In Heaven”
By Pastor Mark Taylor

“After this manner pray: Our Father Who is in Heaven. Holy and Honored shall be Your Name.  Your Kingdom come, Your will be done in Earth, as it is in Heaven.”.
(Matthew 6:8-10)

Today, (June 18, 2017), in the United States, we celebrate Father’s Day.  The first observance of Father's Day is believed to have been held on June 19, 1910.  It is sad that today one out of three children do not have a father living with them in their homes. 

Notice that when Jesus taught His disciples to pray, He counseled them to relate to God as "Father."  By now, we all understand that prayer is simply the practice of talking with God - it's the vehicle by which fellowship with God can take place in this life. The first lesson from the Lord's Prayer then is simply that God, our Father, wants us to talk to Him. He is a conversationalist; He wants to have that kind of relationship with His children, one where the children take the initiative to discuss the events of their lives, and He wants to be the One who is available to listen and meet their needs.
As human beings we are designed to know God as our Good, Loving, Heavenly Father.  The trouble is we do not see Him clearly... partly because the lenses we wear to look at Him are provided by the experiences of our earthly fathers (and other male authority figures).  If we had or have, a physically absent or emotionally absent father, then at a heart level we may well fear that God will not be close to us... and therefore we find it hard to believe that He wants to draw near and is near!   If you do not have an earthly father present with you today, or if your father does not show you the love you desire, God wants to be your Father.  “When my father and my mother forsake me, Then the LORD will take care of me.” (Psalms 27:10).  
Our Father is our protector.  “A father of the fatherless, a defender of widows, Is God in His holy habitation.” (Psalms 68:5).

Our FATHER is full of forgiveness: “As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us” (Psalms 103:12).

Our FATHER is Love:  “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love”  (1 John 4:7-8).

Our FATHER is all powerful (omnipotent).  There is no limit to what HE can do.  “Great is our Lord, and mighty in power; His understanding is infinite.” (Psalms 147:5). 

Our FATHER is all knowing (omniscient).   He knows your thoughts: “The LORD knows the thoughts of man, That they are futile” (Psalms 94:11).  “You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off” (Psalms 139:2).

Our FATHER is present everywhere (omnipresent).  Our FATHER is not limited by time or space. “Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there” (Psalms 139:7-8).

A good Earthly Father should be someone we can go to when we are in trouble or when we are discouraged.  Sometimes all we need is a word of encouragement from him to give us the courage to keep on going when we feel like giving up. Someone to tell us he is for us and on our side.  “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.”  (Jeremiah 29:11-12).   

Your Heavenly Father can meet that need and give you the resources to get back on your feet when you have been knocked down by this world.  “As a father pities his children, So the LORD pities those who fear Him. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust.” (Psalms 103:13-14).  Do you need a Father today who can just take you in His arms and tell you everything is going to be ok?  Your Heavenly Father wants to do just that.  “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”  (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)

Fathers and mothers, grandfathers and grandmothers, there is no greater gift that you can give to your children and grandchildren, than your time.  There are times when they just need someone to listen to them and spend some time with them.  This is something our Heavenly Father wants to give to His children.  He is a good listener and never too busy to take time for you.

“Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.” (1 John 5:14-15).
'Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” (Jeremiah 33:2-3).

Our FATHER is full of pity and mercy: “The LORD is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him” (Psalms 103:8-11).

On this Father's Day, we will honor our fathers with a gift, a card, a call, a word of appreciation or a hug. Let us also remember to honor our Heavenly Father. We can honor our fathers who have gone to Heaven by transferring that love into an act of kindness to someone else.

We will honor Him by taking time to talk with Him, worshipping Him in Spirit and thanking Him for His faithful provision. We will seek to correct any broken relationships we may have with Him or with others of His children. We will follow His leadership into ways of righteousness and accept His protection from the evil one. We will give Him all the praise and glory due His name.  Make this a Happy Father’s Day for your Heavenly Father.
I hope the God of the Bible is your FATHER. I hope that you have seen the FATHER today.  He wants to be your FATHER.   It is His will that everyone go to Heaven and live with Him forever.   "Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven." The Father is a king, but a king who does not always get what He wants.  What we need to understand is that He values the free choice of His children - He wants you to come to Him out of love, not coercion or fear.  Let His will be done in you.


Saturday, May 13, 2017

THE TWENTY THIRD PSALM - VERSE 4

PSALM 23 – VERSE 4 
by Pastor Mark Taylor


“Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death”

In the first three verses the sheep has been bragging about the Shepherd.  Now the sheep begins to talk to the Shepherd.  During the hot summers the most efficient Shepherds take their flocks up the mountains where they can find fresh water and the best grazing.  As the Shepherd and the sheep go up the mountains, they walk through deep valleys that have deep ravines, rock slides, mud or snow avalanches, and predators like coyotes, bears, wolves, or cougars.  So the walk through the valley is not without risk.  But, the sheep “fear no evil, for you are with me”.

The Shepherd has been through these valleys many times.  He knows this wild but wonderful country like the palm of his own strong hand.  Never would he take His flock where He had not already been.  Like sheep, we can never reach the best water and fields if we don’t go through the valleys to get to the mountains.  Every mountain has its valleys, but the sheep say “I will fear no evil”.

It should be notice that this verse states “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death.”  It does not say I die there or stop there – but rather “I walk through”.  This is not talking about dying.  But even here, for the child of God, death is not an end but merely the door into a higher and more exalted life of intimate contact with God.  In living we pass through the valley of death on our way to higher ground.  There is no need to “fear” in living or dying, for He is with us.

When we move to higher ground with God, we learn to know Him in a new and intimate manner.  As Christians we will sooner or later discover that it is in the valleys of our lives that we find refreshment from God Himself.  It is not until we have walked with Him through some very deep troubles that we discover He can lead us to find help and comfort right there in the midst of our difficulty.

Only those who have been through such dark valleys can console, comfort or encourage others in similar situations.  The one who can best minister to a broken heart is one who has known a broken heart.  There are going to be some valleys in life for all of us.  The Good Shepherd Himself assured us that “In this world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).

Will you allow the Good Shepherd to lead you up to higher ground and “through” the valleys of life?  He has taken many sheep safely up there before.  Jesus wants to be your Shepherd today.

“I will fear no evil: for you are with me”

Jesus has reminded us that we are to pray to keep evil away from us.  
“And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.” (Matthew 6:13).
The Shepherd takes special care to keep His sheep from danger.  When he hears their voice of distress, He will come to their aid.  “This poor man cried out, and the LORD heard him, And saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the LORD encamps all around those who fear Him, And delivers them.” (Psalms 34:6-7).

We do not have to live in fear because He is with us.  “For He Himself has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you." (Hebrews 13:5).  He loves us and we can depend upon His presence and protection. “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear”. (1 John 4:18).

“Thy Rod (Word) and Thy Staff (Holy Spirit), They Comfort Me”

The first use of the shepherd’s rod was as an instrument of protection both for himself and his sheep when they were in danger. The rod was an extension of the shepherd’s own right arm.  It stood as a symbol of his strength, his power, and his authority in any serious situation.  It was something that brought comfort to the sheep, because they knew the strength and security of being with their shepherd. “Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me; You will stretch out Your hand Against the wrath of my enemies, And Your right hand will save me.” (Psalms 138:7)

The Scriptures today are God’s Rod.  They are the extension of His mind, will, and intentions.  It is reassuring to the child of God to turn to the Word of God and know it to be His Shepherd’s hand of authority.  It was the rod of God’s Word that Christ, our Good Shepherd, used in His own encounter with Satan during His desert temptation.  It is the same Word of God which we can count on again and again to counter the assaults and attacks of Satan.
“And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;” (Ephesians 6:17)

The second use for the shepherd’s rod was that of discipline.  The scriptures are God’s way to keep us from sin.  It is the Word of God that comes swiftly to our hearts and comes to correct and reprove us.  “Your word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against You” (Psalm 119:11).

The third use for the shepherd’s rod was that of comfort and examination.  In caring for his sheep, the good shepherd would from time to time make a careful examination of each individual sheep. He opens the fleece with the rod and feels the body for any sign of trouble.  “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try m, and know my thoughts: and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139: 23-24).

The shepherd’s staff identifies the shepherd as a shepherd.  No one in any other profession carries a shepherd’s staff.  It is uniquely an instrument used for the care of sheep and only sheep.  Whereas the rod conveys the concept of authority, of power, of discipline, of defense against danger, the word “staff” speaks of all that is long-suffering and kind.

Just as the rod of God is symbolic of the Word of God, so the staff of God is symbolic of the Spirit of God.  In Christ’s dealing with us as individuals there is sweetness, comfort, and consolation with the gentle correction brought about by the work of His gracious Spirit.

The first use of the staff lies in drawing sheep together into an intimate relationship.  The shepherd will use his staff to gently life a newborn lamb and bring it to its mother if they become separated.  In the same way the staff is used by the shepherd to reach out and catch individual sheep, young  or old, and draw them close to himself for intimate examination.  In the Christian life we find the gracious Holy Spirit “The Comforter” drawing folks together into a warm, personal fellowship with one another.

The staff is also used for guiding the sheep.  Sometimes the shepherd will actually hold his staff against the side of some sheep simply so that they feel his touch.  The sheep obviously enjoys this special attention from the shepherd. In our walk with God we are told that Christ, Himself, would by his Holy Spirit “guide us and lead us into all truth” (John 16:13).

There is for the true child of God that intimate experience of sensing the Comforter at his side.  He can be relied on to assist us in every decision and in this there lies tremendous comfort for the Christian.  He actually conveys the mind of Christ in the matter to your mind.

The staff is also used for getting the sheep out of jams and dilemmas.  The staff was used to lift them out of the jams and put them back on solid ground.  Many of our problems are of our own making.  But the tenderness, compassion, and care of our Shepherd comes to us and lifts us by His Spirit out of the difficulties we get into.  What patience God has with us.  He is longsuffering and compassionate, and forgiving. “This poor man cried out, and the LORD heard him, And saved him out of all his troubles.” (Psalms 34:6).



Sunday, March 19, 2017

THE TWENTY THIRD PSALMS - VERSES 1-3

THE TWENTY THIRD PSALMS
by Pastor Mark Taylor

TWENTY THIRD PSALMS – VERSES 1-2
“THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD”

When a shepherd bought a sheep, he was given a distinctive earmark which he cuts into one or other of the ears of his sheep.  The sheep always would bear the mark of the shepherd.  "I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. "But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them.” (John 10:9-12)The shepherd knows his sheep and the sheep know their shepherd.  You have a great Shepherd.  "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. "And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. "My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father's hand. "I and My Father are one." (John 10:27-30)

“I SHALL NOT WANT”

Contentment should be the hallmark of the man or woman who has put his or her affairs in the hands of God.  Jesus is the owner who delights in His flock.  For Him, there is no greater reward, no deeper satisfaction, than that of seeing His sheep contented, well fed, safe, and flourishing under His care. “I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd gives his life for the sheep” (John 10:11).  “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).  “Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.” (1 Timothy 6:6-8)



“HE MAKETH ME TO LIE DOWN IN GREEN PASTURES”

The only time sheep will lie down is if four requirements are met.  They will not lie down unless they are free from all fear, they are free from friction with others of their kind, they are free from flies or other pests; and free from hunger.  Christ can meet all of these requirements in our lives.  “For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7).  Sheep like people are constantly in conflict, and jealousy within the flock can be a detrimental thing.  But when the shepherd is present, the sheep quickly forget their rivalries and stop fighting.  When your eyes are on the Master, they are not on those around you.  “"But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. (Luke 12:7 )
The shepherd gives his sheep freedom from fear from the torment of parasites.  He applies various types of insect repellents to his sheep mixed with oil.  This is one of the main functions of the gracious Holy Spirit.  He is often symbolized by oil. It brings healing, comfort, and relief from the harsh and abrasive aspects of life.  “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” (1 John 4:18)

The shepherd plants the green pastures with much toil and skill.  The Good Shepherd has supplied green pastures for those who care to move in onto them and there find peace and plenty. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:8-10 NKJV)  “Follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. (1 Timothy 6:11).

PSALM 23 – VERSE 3
“HE RESTORETH MY SOUL”

In studying this Psalm it must always be remembered that it is a sheep in the Good Shepherd’s care who is speaking.  It could be assumed that anyone in the Good Shepherd’s care could never become so distressed in their soul as to need restoration, but it does happen.  In Psalm 42:11 David cries out, “Why are you cast down, O my soul?  And why are you disquieted within me?  Hope thou in God”.

Cast down is an old English shepherd’s term for a sheep that has turned over on its back and cannot get up again by itself.  A “cast” sheep is a very pathetic sight.  Lying on its back, its feet in the air, struggling to stand up without success.  If the owner does not arrive on the scene within a reasonably short time, the sheep will die.  In the Christian life there is an exciting and comforting parallel here.  Many people have the idea that when a child of God falls, when he is frustrated and helpless in a spiritual dilemma, God becomes disgusted, fed up and even furious with him.  This simply is not so.  In examining our Lord Jesus Christ we see Him again and again as the Good Shepherd picking up “cast” sheep.  The tenderness, the love, the patience that He used to restore Peter’s soul after the terrible tragedy of his temptation and denial is a classic picture of Christ coming to restore one of His own.Christians, like sheep, can become cast down when we think “we have it made”, and walk away from the sheep fold.  Sometimes it is because of self-indulgence and moving away from the pasture where the Good Shepherd is protecting us.  Sometimes it is because, like sheep, we simply have too much wool.  Wool in Scripture depicts the old self-life in the Christian.  It is the outward expression of an inner attitude, the assertion of my own desire and hopes and aspirations.  Sometimes it is the clinging on of accumulation of things, of possessions, of worldly ideas that begin to weigh us down, drag us down, and hold us down.

Remember, it is the Good Shepherd that comes and finds us and restores us.  But he also gives us this command:  “Brethren, If a person be overtaken in a fault, you which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering yourself, lest you also be tempted.  Bear you one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:1-2).
“He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake”

Sheep are notorious creatures of habit.  If left to themselves they will follow the same trails until they become ruts; graze the same hills until they turn to desert wastes, pollute their own ground until it is corrupt with disease and parasites. King David wrote this Psalm because he knew through firsthand experience, that if the flock was to flourish and the owner’s reputation was to be held in high esteem, the sheep had to be kept on the move.  They must be shifted from pasture to pasture periodically.  A pattern of grazing is worked out carefully in advance so that the sheep do not feed over the same ground too long or too frequently.

“All we like sheep have gone astray” (Isaiah 53:6).  We prefer to follow our own desires and turn to our own ways.  And this we do deliberately, repeatedly even to our own hurt.  We insist we know what is best for us even though the disastrous results may be self-evident.  Just as sheep will blindly and habitually follow one another along the same little trails, so we humans cling to the same habits that we have seen ruin other lives.  “There is a way that seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death” (Proverbs 16:25).  The point is that many of us do not want to be led in the paths of righteousness, we actually prefer to turn to our own way even though it may take us straight into trouble.
Jesus said: “Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Mark 8:34).  This is the pivot point on which a Christian either “goes on” with God or at which point he “goes back” from following on.

New attitudes have to be acquired to be led “in the path of righteousness”.  Instead of loving myself most I am willing to love Christ best and others more than myself.  Instead of insisting on my rights, I am willing to forego them in favor of others.  Instead of finding fault with life and always asking “Why?”, I am wiling to accept every circumstance of life in an attitude of gratitude.



Friday, March 10, 2017

RULES AND BOUNDARIES

RULES AND BOUNDARIES
by Pastor Mark Taylor
Matthew 7:21-27



Matthew 7:24-27 Jesus gives a parable of two men, one wise and one foolish that built their house. One built on solid rock and the other built on sand. 

The man who built on solid rock lived with security. Security is closely related to freedom. Each man had the freedom to build on whatever foundation he desired. 

When you build your life on Jesus you have a rock solid foundation to construct the rest of your life. Only the person who builds his life on Christ is secure, all other ground is sinking sand. The life build on Christ is delivered from fear. The life grounded in Jesus has no need to fear the present or the future.

It is the rules and boundaries that make sports an exciting game. Take away the rules and boundaries and you have no game. Even so in the Christian life God’s commandments are given for our own good. God gave us boundaries to keep us safe and remove confusion from our lives. Without rules and boundaries your life would be in constant chaos and all relationships would implode. 

God has set boundaries for your own good. When you know the boundaries and practice them you enjoy a fun filled life. When you know and practice boundaries you enjoy freedom and security.

God has given everyone the freedom to choose. You can choose to stay within His boundaries or go outside His boundaries. It is in that true freedom to choose that you find authentic love.  Whether it is your relationship to God or to others if you take away freedom you take away love. It is only when you are free to chose and disagree that you are free to love.  God designed the entire creation for freedom. We were not created to control each other we were created to love each other freely.  Where there is extreme control and abuse there is not love. Boundaries are not something you set on another person. They are something you set on yourself.

It is possible to live without boundaries. The devil will try to fool you into thinking that living without boundaries is the way to freedom.  Breaking outside of boundaries can be dangerous.  One word gives the key to “freedom.” That one word is obedience. You can know about the commandments and boundaries God has given. You can brag on how much you know about spiritual truths, but the important thing to Jesus: “Are you walking the talk.” 

Jesus is speaking of the absolute necessity of building your life on the right kind of foundation. Because the foundation is what holds everything up; it’s what holds everything together. No matter what quality of materials you use; no matter how carefully you join the frame together; no matter how skilled your craftsmen may be – if the foundation isn’t solid and stable, your “house” will lack integrity. Over time, cracks will develop in the walls. The windows will stick. The roof will leak. And sooner or later, the storms of life will bring it crashing down, and everything you’ve worked so hard to build will be lost.

Both the wise man and the foolish man build a great house. Both worked hard. One was wise and the other foolish. Why? The wise man build on a solid foundation and the foolish man build on sand.

Jesus gives you the choice where you will build your life. You can build on temporary sand. You can disregard His teachings. Or you can choose to build your life on Christ the solid rock. You build on a solid foundation by -Obeying the teachings of Christ
-Paying attention to the building codes – regular pray,  Bible study, worship, small group fellowship and by  Making choices that honor and please the Lord.

People who live without boundaries often lack self-control. Paul wrote to Timothy, "Discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness. For godliness is profitable not only in the this life but also in the age to come." (I Tim. 4:7,8) The Bible teaches us, "When to say Yes, when to say No and when to take control of your life." 

Limits and boundaries are good for everyone, know your limits, know how far you can go.  This is true in how you treat yourself and how you allow others to treat you.  This is true about the way you treat your health and it is true about moral decisions you make.

There is a spiritual law of sowing and reaping.  When you set boundaries in your life and build it on a good foundation, you will reap good things  When you do not follow the boundaries God has set for you because He loves you, you will reap the natural consequences of your decisions.


Start today planting good seed so that you will have a good harvest.  Reinforce your foundation so that your life will be able to withstand the storms of life.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

ONE MORE NIGHT WITH THE FROGS

ONE MORE NIGHT WITH THE FROGS
By Pastor Mark Taylor




“And Moses said unto Pharaoh.. When shall I ask God for you, and for your servants, and for your people, to destroy the frogs from you and your houses...And he said Tomorrow” (Exodus 8:9-10)

How many people know in their heart what they should do, and have good intentions but they keep putting it off? One of the greatest challenges we face is procrastination. The interesting thing about procrastination is that it is so easy to justify. We may say:  One day… 

 I’ll get serious about my relationship with God.
 I’m going to forgive that person who hurt me.
 I’m going to get back in shape.
 I’m going to get my finances in order.
 I’ll find a ministry and start serving God.
What is your…
“One day I’ll __________________”? 

“Tomorrow”- Are you serious? When given the opportunity to get rid of millions of nasty, stinky, diseased ridden frogs at any moment,  Pharaoh said, “Tomorrow”.  He could have gotten rid of them at that very moment. When given the opportunity to rid yourselves of all of the nasty, stinky, diseased things within your life; why do you tell God, “Later”?

Pharaoh’s procrastination not only affected him, but his family, servants, and the whole nation of Egypt with the exception of where God’s people were living.  When we delay “getting right with God”, it affects everyone that is in our sphere of influence.

Procrastination is dangerous because it robs us of that which can never be regained.  An opportunity unused is indeed an opportunity lost. Let us resolve to take advantage of the opportunities presented unto us. “Redeem your time, because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:16)
It is a bad decision to put off obeying the gospel and spend one more night with the frogs.  It is true that God is very patient.  The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering towards us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.  But the day could come when God would give up 
on you.  “And the Lord said, My Spirit shall not always strive with man...” (Genesis 6:3).

The people of Noah’s time lived lives in which the thoughts of men were continually evil.  God gave them 120 years to turn to Him, and then he sealed the door of the ark and no man could open it.   They had spent one night too many with the frogs and lost the opportunity to have a relationship with God. 

It is a bad decision to spend one more night with the frogs because the conscience may become hardened.  “Today, if you will heart His voice, harden not your hearts.” (Hebrews 3:15).  

God does not easily give up on people.  He is a God of mercy and love.  But there are times when people choose to give up on God and reject the Holy Spirit speaking to them.  When their hearts becomes so depraved by repeated rebellion to God that their conscience is no longer open to the Word of God, they are risking the salvation and forgiveness He offers.  “And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not right.  Became filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness, full of envy murder, debate, deceit,   malignity (malice, meanness, nastiness, spitefulness), whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable (hardheaded, hard-nosed, headstrong, immovable, obstinate), unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.”  (Romans 1:28-32).

It is a bad decision to spend one more night with the frogs because of the uncertainty of death.  “You do not know what shall happen tomorrow.  For what is your life?  It is even as a vapor, that appears for a little time, and then vanishes away...Therefore to him that knows to do good, and does it not, to him it is sin.”  (James 4: 14, 17).  What is is that God is telling you today?  God is the Creator of time. God’s great gift to you is #1-Jesus and #2-Time. The Lord has given us time to work, time to play, time to laugh, time to labor, etc... We need to learn to see that every day is a gift from God. Did you know that every morning a gracious God, who loves you, deposits into your bank of time 1,440 minutes?

Identify the priorities of your day.  Motivate yourself to do it now.  Energize yourself with God’s power, not your own.  “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Psalm 90:12.   Wisdom is the art of spending time wisely. 

What frogs are you letting stay in your life until later? Will you spend one more day or night with the frogs and risk your heart becoming harden?  Recognize that God wants to deliver you today from the sins that are keeping you from another day of peace and happiness that He has to offer you.

“Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.”        (James 4:17)

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

GOD IS ON YOUR SIDE

GOD IS ON YOUR SIDE
By Pastor Mark Taylor

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.  For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.  Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.
What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?  He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?  Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.” (Romans 8:28-33)
If you’re a child of God, God is for you! He’s on your side. God is for us, not against us!
He loves you very much .  Since God is for us, who can be against us. The passage  above implies that only those who continually love God are the ones for whom this promise is for.   “Whoever knows and obeys my commandments is the person who loves me. Those who love me will have my Father’s love, and I, too, will love them and show myself to them.” (John 14:21)

Salvation is about accepting God’s invitation to let Him love you. Salvation is the ultimate expression of love.  You might feel rejected by the world, but that’s okay, you’ve got a heavenly cheering section that’s rooting you on.  If something isn’t working right in your relationship with God, then you better check your side because nothing’s wrong with His side. 

One of the purposes behind God’s plan was to see those who love Him be conformed to the image of Jesus.

“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do, and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect His will really is.”  Romans 12:2 

God is bigger than our problems. His plans are bigger than our problems.  When we are suffering through difficult times, we can know that God will cause the bad situation to work together for good.

Satan can be Against Us.  Have you ever felt like nothing good ever happens to you?  That somebody else is getting the blessing you need.  Have you ever said to yourself, why can’t God bless me?

There’s a covenant between you and your God that is in force and there’s no devil big enough to break the blood covenant between you and God.   The feelings of isolation, loneliness, and abandonment that you have faced are nothing more than the enemy trying to bring you down. God is own your side.

Life situations can be against us.  You know life can be awfully hard and bad at times.
There are diseases, distresses, sorrows & sadnesses.  Mix in a few sinful mistakes, and life can seem heavy.  But God is on your side.  He is for you and help you overcome what ever is against you. “The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?  When the wicked came against me To eat up my flesh, My enemies and foes, They stumbled and fell. Though an army may encamp against me, My heart shall not fear; Though war may rise against me, In this I will be confident.”  Psalm 27:1-3

We can be against ourselves.  It’s a constant tug of war between the Spirit and the flesh.   “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:41

Since God is for us, who can be against us. Since He’s given His own precious dear son, “how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things”. Remember, this isn’t a blanket of selfish ambition for us, but the desire to have what God wants us to have - Peace, patience, kindness, goodness… help, hope, encouragement!  “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold From those who walk uprightly.”  Psalm 84:11

Jesus said “And whatsoever you shall ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you shall ask any thing in My name, I will do it” 
John 14:13-13

God is ready to help you when you call upon Him.   “casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7