Is God’s Love Unconditional?

If you believe God’s love is unconditional, and by that you mean that God loves regardless if anyone accepts or appreciates His love then the answer would be yes. God does not need anyone to accept or appreciate Him, or His love. God is love and God is not a needy, ego driven Person. He is totally confident in who He is. God is eternally self-sufficient!

But if you are referring to God’s love being unconditional as it pertains to Him relating to people, then His love is not unconditional. It is in fact, uber-conditional!

If God has no conditions on His love does that mean He also has no expectations for His love? By that I mean, does God send His love out into a vacuum, or is it purposely directed toward a desired human target?

If God’s love has a desired human target does God not have conditions and expectations for that human target to be in a relationship of love with Him? Can God have no conditions and still have expectations?

How do you measure love that has no conditions or expectations? Who defines that kind of love? If there are no conditions or expectations how can anyone feel successful in loving God, or the people in their life?

The Psalmist said, “Your lovingkindness, O Lord, extends to the heavens,” [36:5a]. To me this means God is the Author and Definer of His love.

Paul wrote to the Ephesians, “14 For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, 15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, 16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God” [Ephesians 3].

The psalmist said God’s love reaches to the heavens and Paul says he prayed we would comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth, length, height and depth of God’s love as expressed in Christ. His prayer was so “that you [we] may be filled up to all the fullness of God.”

In other words, Paul is revealing that God’s love can be measured which means there are definable boundaries for us to understand how we are to relate to God and His love.

If God’s love is unconditional, then what about Jesus? He is God who came as a human being who lived within the limits of humanity even though He remained fully God? Did the perfect personification of God and His love love unconditionally and without any expectations?

Paul, the most revelatory teacher of God’s truth except for Jesus, wrote a basic but vitally important truth about how to obtain revelation into spiritual things.

1 Corinthians 15:46 – “However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural; then the spiritual.”

Obviously, the spirit world preceded the natural world as God is Spirit and He is the One who spoke all things natural into existence, and personally hand made the original man in the beginning. So, what is Paul revealing in this verse? Paul is revealing that we can learn spiritual truths from natural things.

When you take a look at how God, in His infinite wisdom, made mankind physically so that the heart would have maximum protection, you can receive insight into the spiritual dynamic of God, His love, His love of relationship, His love for people in relationship to Him and others, as well as the prescribed rules He set out to be in relationship with Him and in representing Him.

God positioned the heart in the human body in such a way that it would take great effort and or great force to physically damage it. By this we can see that God was communicating that protecting our heart was of special importance to Him. If God made that kind of decision to protect the heart of His crown jewel of creation then what do we learn about God, His love, and how He protects His heart? We are made in His likeness and image!

It is absolutely dangerous for preachers, or any person for that matter, to say God loves unconditionally. God loves eternally! God loves perfectly! But there are ZERO verses that say God loves unconditionally. In fact, the word ‘unconditional’ is not found in any of the major translations that are considered the most accurate to the original texts.

If God loves unconditionally then Jesus must have loved unconditionally, since He was God in the flesh. Additionally, God must expect you and me to love unconditionally. If that is true would that not mean that He expects us to remain in genuinely abusive and unsafe relationships.

For instance, if Jesus loved unconditionally then why did he question those who struck Him in the face at His mockery of a trial. “If I have spoken wrongly, testify of the wrong; but if rightly, why do you strike Me?” [John 18:23]

You do realize that God divorced natural Israel, don’t you?

Two times in the Old Testament [Isaiah 50:1; Jeremiah 3:8] it is recorded that God divorced Israel. And Jesus, in the New Testament [Matthew 23:38] put the final nail in their coffin when He wept over Jerusalem declaring He was leaving their house desolate [divorced and abandoned]. Why would God divorce Israel if He loved them without conditions?

For love to be real love there must be real, and definable parameters to define what love is.

There is not 1 [ONE] verse in the Bible that says – “unconditional love,” or “love unconditionally” as it pertains to God and His love. In fact, you cannot find one verse with the words “God”, “love”, and “unconditional” in it.

There are only two Bibles that have the word “unconditional” in them.

They are:

Good News Translation – Has 4 verses with “unconditional” in them

Leviticus 27:28,29 – “None of you may sell or buy back what you have unconditionally dedicated to the Lord, whether it is a human being, an animal, or land. It belongs permanently to the Lord. Not even human beings who have been unconditionally dedicated may be bought back; they must be put to death.”

  • These verses have to do with what someone dedicates unconditionally to the Lord!

Numbers 18:14 – “Everything in Israel that has been unconditionally dedicated to me belongs to you.”

  • This verse has to do with the Levites getting what God’s people unconditionally dedictated to Him.

Numbers 21:2 – “Then the Israelites made a vow to the Lord: “If you will let us conquer these people, we will unconditionally dedicate them and their cities to you and will destroy them.”

  • This verse has to do with God’s people making a vow to the Lord of unconditionally dedicating the people and their cities God defeated to God.

The Message Bible – Has just two verses with “unconditional” in them

Daniel 6:8 – “Issue this decree, O king, and make it unconditional, as if written in stone like all the laws of the Medes and the Persians.”

  • This verse speaks of a decree Darius made at the behest of his advisors so they could entrap Daniel, who was a covenant keeping praying man, in a plot born out of their jealousy of him.

Matthew 18:35 – “And that’s exactly what my Father in heaven is going to do to each one of you who doesn’t forgive unconditionally anyone who asks for mercy.”

  • This verse is in reference to forgiveness and unforgiveness. It is similar to what Jesus said in Matthew 6 about our being forgiven by God is directly connected to our willingness to forgive those who have wronged us.

I have searched the King James, New King James, New American Standard, New International Version, English Standard Version, J.P. Greene’s Literal Version, Young’s Literal Translation, as well as the Weymouth New Testament Translation and the International Standard Version of the New Testament, and have not found one [1] verse that says the words “unconditional love”, or “love unconditionally” in them. As stated above, there are no verses with “God”, “love”, and “unconditional” in them.

In fact, Jesus, who is God who came as a human being said:

“46 While He was still speaking to the crowds, behold, His mother and brothers were standing outside, seeking to speak to Him. 47 Someone said to Him, ‘Behold, Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside seeking to speak to You.’ 48 But Jesus answered the one who was telling Him and said, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?’ 49 And stretching out His hand toward His disciples, He said, ‘Behold My mother and My brothers! 50 For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother.'” [Matthew 12]

  • If love is not conditional why would Jesus put conditions on who He regarded His family to be?

“Why do you call Me Lord, Lord and do not do what I say.” Luke 6:46

  • If love is not conditional then why would Jesus question the confession of those calling Him Lord, Lord?

“16 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. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.“[ John 3]

  • If love is not conditional then why did Jesus say people must believe in Him [who He says He is, what He came to do, etc] in order to be saved and not condemned?

“So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, ‘If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine.'” John 8:31

  • If love is not conditional why would Jesus tell the Jews who believed Him they must continue in His word to be genuine disciples?

“If you love Me you will keep My commandments.” John 14:15

Or, “Because you love Me you will keep [obey] My commandments [word].”

  • If love is unconditional then why did Jesus attach obedience to being in relationship with Him?

“So that the world may know that I love the Father I do exactly as the Father commands Me.” John 14:31

  • If love is not conditional then why would Jesus feel the need to demonstrate His love to the Father with His complete obedience to His Father?

“You are My friends if you do what I command you.” John 15:14

Or, “You are My friends because you do what I command you.”

  • If love is not conditional why would Jesus place a condition on friendship?

There are many other texts that clearly communicate that God has requirements to His love, and that there are requirements to receive His love and to maintain a right [righteous] relationship with Him.

One of the great texts that is normally the “proof text” for the unconditional lover is 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. “4 Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, 5 does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, 6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails.”

The word ‘unconditional’ is not found or assumed in that text.

I repeat my opening statement: “It is absolutely dangerous for preachers to say God loves unconditionally. ”

Here is just one of many Old Testament texts that established early on what the will of God is as it pertains to His love for His covenant people in the Old Testament.

“Know therefore that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God, who keeps His covenant and His lovingkindness to a thousandth generation with those who love Him and keep His commandments.” [Deuteronomy 7:9]

The Lord is God and God is faithful to keep His covenant and His love and kindness to a thousandth generation. But the condition is – with those who love Him and prove they love Him by valuing what He values with the value He places on it. God never stops loving but God certainly will stop relating to people who abuse Him and His love.

I feel like I am being a fool for focusing on this, but it is imperative that someone focus on it. There is zero, zip, nil, nada, none, nyet, NOT ONE verse that says God loves unconditionally!

Please, for the sake of your eternal state before, and with, God Almighty, do NOT believe those who tell you you can behave however you want and God is okay with you or your unhealthy and or unholy behavior. It is NOT true and it IS dangerous!

Please!

As a form of literary exclamation point I want to leave you with this text and thoughts.

Romans 2:4-8 – “4 Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? 5 But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, 6 who will render to each person according to his deeds: 7 to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; 8 but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation.”

If God loves unconditionally then why does God –

  • Give kindness that leads people to repent?
  • Care about people remaining stubborn and unrepentant?
  • Have a day of wrath where there is a revelation of His righteous judgment?
  • Render to each person according to their deeds?
  • Deliniate between those who do good and those who don’t?
    • To those who persevere in doing good they receive glory, honor, immortality and eternal life
  • Care that people are selfishly ambitious, disobedient to Him but obedient to unrighteousness?
    • To those who do not do good they receive wrath and indignation

Receive and steward God’s passion, power, presence, priority, process, promises, protection, provision, pruning, purging, purity and purpose!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin
His Hisstorymaker

Jesus Versus the Jerusalem Jews!

Luke writes that Jesus, while in Jerusalem, said this before He ascended into the dimension called heaven.

Luke 24

“46 Thus it is written, that the Christ would suffer and rise again from the dead the third day, 47 and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.”

How could “all the nations”, not just the Jewish nation, hear the message of repentance if the people empowered to preach it refused to leave home and preach it? And why did they disobey Jesus who would die to secure the forgiveness every nation was supposed to receive?

The Jewish men who heard Jesus say these words didn’t leave Jerusalem until they were forced out by persecution perpetrated by the Pharisees’ angry hit man, Saul of Tarsus. They planted themselves in Palestine instead of going throughout the planet!

Acts 8:1

“And on that day a great persecution began against the church in Jerusalem, and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles.”

It was only after the gospel was being preached by members of the Church did the leaders [apostles] of the church begin venturing out of “their house”. Leaders are supposed to lead but these leaders became followers. They only provided “leadership” after the Holy Spirit circumvented their leadership and worked His work outside Jerusalem through those appointed by the “leaders” to serve tables and those fleeing for their lives. Those fleeing for their lives shared the faith that would save other’s lives.

It was almost a decade after Jesus told His apostles to leave Jerusalem and go into Judea, Samaria and then to the ends of the earth [into all the nations] before they obeyed His command.

I believe the answer to their disobedience lies in the lie they believed about the restoration of the kingdom to natural Israel. “Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?” [Acts 1:6]

It is interesting to me a decade passed and a decade is 10 years. The Law is made up of 10 Commandments. The Law reveals sin and brings death in disobedience to it. So, Jesus sent death into the house [Jerusalem] and His house [Church] because the apostles disobeyed His “command” to go into ALL the world and preach forgiveness of sin.

This is an Adamic [carnal, fleshly] mistake!

The first man Adam, the original apostle of Christ, failed to take Paradise to the planet and in doing so sucked the serpent into the Garden. The serpent sucked the Life out of God’s leaders when they were seduced by his schemes!

The 1st century Jewish apostles were more concerned with when God was going to restore His kingdom to natural Israel than in discipling to Christ the nations of the world Christ told them to invade. That command and commission is to fulfill the promise to Abraham in the gospel of Christ, “I will bless those who bless you [Abram], and I will curse those who curse you [Abram], and in you [Abram] all the nations of the earth will be blessed” [Genesis 12:3]

Galatians 3

“8 The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying,All the nations will be blessed in you.” 9 So then those who are of faith are blessed with Abraham, the believer.”

The blessing of Abraham is salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. Or as Jesus said, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe the gospel.” [Mark 1:15]

Today, what God said to Abram has been hijacked by those who still believe God is going to restore natural Israel to a place of prominence! They say God said, “I will bless those who bless Israel and I will curse those who curse Israel.” Whether out of ignorance, naiveté or deception this belief is damaging to those it infects.

The blessing and cursing have everything to do with the acceptance or rejection of Jesus, who is the Son of God and Son of Man! It involves natural Israel or the natural descendants of Abraham, the Jews, but it is not just about them. “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]. That applies to every person regardless of ethnicity, gender or socio-economic status.

And once the “He who believes” believes, he, along with everyone else who believes is one with Christ Jesus, and are Abraham’s descendants, his heirs according to the promise made to him in Genesis 12:3.

Galatians 3

“28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise..”

John, the Jewish disciple Jesus loved, said this:

John 3

“16 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. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. 18 He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 21 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

  • God so loved [loves] the world, not just Israel
  • God sent His Son into the world, not just Israel
  • God wants to save the world, not just Israel
  • God sent the light into the world, not just Israel
  • God does not want the world condemned, not just Israel

In fact, the entire New Testament revelation reveals that truth!

Palestine is not the prize. The planet is!

Romans 4:13

“For the promise to Abraham or to his descendants that he would be heir of the world was not through the Law, but through the righteousness of faith.”

That is why the meek will inherit the earth!

God had to convert a Jewish religious terrorist [Saul/Paul] before the Jerusalem Church got serious about the Great Commission! It got so bad that God moved the center of world evangelism from Jerusalem to Antioch of Phrygia in the region of Galatia!

The church in Antioch was not formed by the forging apostolic force from Jerusalem. No, it was formed by believers who came from various places due to the persecution related to Stephen’s martyrdom, and preached to the Jews in Antioch. After that men from Cyprus and Cyrene came and preached the gospel to the Greeks!

Finally, the Jerusalem Church sent Barnabas to Antioch to encourage the Jewish and Greek believers there to remain faithful to Jesus. Barnabas was not one of the original apostles!

And by the way, it was the Antioch church that Paul was a leader in and was sent out to evangelize the world from. And it is the place the believers [Jews and Greeks] were first called Christians.

The Jerusalem Church produced the Judaizers who followed Paul around harassing the converts to Christ in his ministry. These Law based believers tried their best to pull the saints back under the Law of Moses.

There are contemporary Judaizers still trying to trick saints into slavery!

There are those today who have read Jesus’ words found in Luke 24 and still will not leave Jerusalem! If they do venture out beyond Jerusalem they attempt to persuade the gullible to come back under their control. Using the “Jewish root” lie they lie in wait for those who do not know their Bible.

The root of Christianity is Jesus, not Judaism!

Jerusalem and Judaism have never been Jesus’ focus. The nations are Jesus’ focus! Jesus is called, “Desire of the nations,” but some believers only see Jesus as the Savior of the Jews, or the Jewish Savior! Jesus came into the world He created as a Jewish person but let’s not go overboard with that truth.

First, God chose the Hebrew people out of all of the ethnic groups on the planet because He chose them, not because they earned that choice.

Deuteronomy 7:7,8

“7 The Lord did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any of the peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples, 8 but because the Lord loved you and kept the oath which He swore to your forefathers.”

God made a decision and honored His covenant commitment to the forefathers [Abraham, Isaac and Jacob], who were all men of faith in God and faithfulness to God.

Second, God divorced Israel in the Old Testament because of their constant adulteries with other gods, who are not God.

Isaiah 50:1

“Thus says the LORD, “Where is the certificate of divorce By which I have sent your mother away? Or to whom of My creditors did I sell you? Behold, you were sold for your iniquities, And for your transgressions your mother was sent away.”

Jeremiah 3:8

“And I saw that for all the adulteries of faithless Israel, I had sent her away and given her a writ of divorce, yet her treacherous sister Judah did not fear; but she went and was a harlot also.”

Third, Jesus abandoned them [Jerusalem] to seal their fate with God. Fourth, Peter and Stephen, two highly visible Jewish men of God laid the blame of Christ’s murder at the door of natural Israel’s house.

Matthew 23:38

Behold, your house is being left to you desolate!”

And lastly, Paul said not to view Jesus, or anyone according to the flesh [ethnicity, gender, or any other natural status symbol].

2 Corinthians 5:16

“Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer.”

On the day of Pentecost Peter preached a scathing sermon in Jerusalem. It was so effective it pierced many Jewish hearts and 3,000 repented and received Christ.

Acts 2

“22 Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know — 23 this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and [you] put Him to death. 36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ —this Jesus whom you crucified.”

Peter said it was God’s predetermined plan and foreknowledge that the Jews would hand Jesus over to the Romans to be murdered. God chose the Jews to bring Jesus physically into the world and He chose them to physically take Him out of this world. So much for celebrating an elitist attitude.

Now, for all the idiots out there are looking for a reason to mistreat Jewish people because of their complicity in Jesus’ death, you need to check your heart and loyalty to the God you say you are defending. God orchestrated the entire plan!

Stephen, in front of the Sanhedrin who were after more blood from those who believed in this Jesus, released his own scathing sermon.

Acts 7

“51 You men who are stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears are always resisting the Holy Spirit; you are doing just as your fathers did. 52 Which one of the prophets did your fathers not persecute? They killed those who had previously announced the coming of the Righteous One, whose betrayers and murderers you have now become; 53 you who received the law as ordained by angels, and yet did not keep it.”

This is painful to face, but it is more painful to listen to and or watch as these Jerusalem loving [preferring] and Christ hating [not preferring] Judaizers to this day defend the natural Jewish people, putting their interests above the Lord they say they love and serve.

And do not point to your “supernatural showmanship” to qualify you as a a genuine spokesman for Christ. Jesus said to watch out for those who over exaggerate their relationship to Christ by pointing to the supernatural. He called them false [misleading] prophets [spokesman] who are ravenous wolves [serve for what they can take from the saints not what they can give to the saints]. They destroy through their deception not even realizing they are deceived.

There is still an elitist spirit that permeates Jewish believers in Christ and that elitism manifests in several ways:

1.They won’t call themselves Christians

  • Are they anti-Christ?

2.They see Jewishness as the pinnacle of being the people of God

  • Paul teaches being naturally Jewish is irrelevant!

3.They label people antisemites who don’t bow at the feet of Zionism

  • Should they be labeled anti-Christ?

See how easy it is to malign someone’s integrity and character?

Forgetting that the gospel was preached to Abraham [Abram] in God’s statement about the nations being blessed, they reduce that revelation to fit their narrow narrative. And by the way, the Hebrews [Jews] are not the only semitic people on the planet. Jesus is the Savior of the Arab people too. The Arabs are semites, but you rarely if ever see them defend the Arabs.

They will not defend the non Hebrew semitic peoples, so – are they antisemites too?

Throwing that label out is indefensible and has no place in the Christian community, unless you are absolutely pure in you antisemitic and anti-Christ positions!

God promised Abraham that Ishmael would be blessed and the blessing of Abraham includes the salvation of all people, even the descendants of Ishmael!

These present day puritans are quick to label nonconformists to political Zionism antisemites. Memo to those people – we are not antisemites. We are pro Savior of the world! We are not anti Jewish or anti Jerusalem. We are pro Jesus the Christ!

Your immaturity and irresponsibility is showing and it is not pretty!

Jesus and the New Testament writers clearly revealed the world is God’s focus and the focus of His work, not just Jerusalem and the Jewish people! Jerusalem and the Jewish people were the starting line, not the finish line.

“Beginning from Jerusalem” is what Jesus said!

The word beginning denotes the first place, not the only place. It also means to rule over. Jesus never intends to rule from Jerusalem. In fact He is forbidden to be a priest or King in Jerusalem or any other city in the world.

“My kingdom is not of this world” is what He told Pilate! It is still not of this world and it will never be of this world. It is in this world! It has always been in this world! And it will always be in this world! But it is NOT of this world!

His rule from Jerusalem is based on that is where He lived, died, was buried, was resurrected and ascended, as a Man. When He returns He will hand the kingdom of heaven back to Father God, and then the end will come! The end will come, not the millennium!

Maturity in the things of God requires the people of God to leave where they began with God, and go to where God is leading them. Even Paul, the writer of Hebrews, makes this truth clear.

Hebrews 6

“1 Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God [See Luke 24:46,47 above], 2 of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment. 3 And this we will do, if God permits.”

Paul explains what maturity looks like in chapter 5. Keep this in mind and go back and read these 2 verses in chapter 6 again, with the context in view.

“8 Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation, 10 being designated by God as a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek. 11 Concerning him we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. 12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. 13 For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. 14 But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.”

Paul is saying these Hebrews should have matured and become teachers, but they were still carnal Christians [infants] in need of other people to supply them milk. He is saying they should have moved on from elementary school [pre-school] to graduate school! These carnal Christians [Hebrew believers] were not even getting their own milk. They drank milk from the breasts of those who were more than happy to keep them unhealthy and immature.

The saints have got to grow up!

The saints have got to get their own milk so that one day they can eat their own meat!

Meet me oh Lord, let’s eat!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin

A Hisstorymaker!

Context Is Crucial To Understanding

You will never understand me if you do not understand this blog. There are so many Christians that do not have the stomach for warfare. They have no situational awareness of spiritual dynamics or demonstrative tough love.

What I mean by what I just said is this, modern Christianity has been infiltrated by a political spirit which says we must “reach across the aisle” in order to come to an agreement we can all live with. Friends, that is not why Jesus came and it is most certainly not how Jesus lived His life. Jesus came to take over!

Jesus came for conviction, not consensus! So repent!

Everyone who does not surrender surrenders their right to represent Him in the world!

To the Christians wanting to “reach across the aisle”, doing good equals being nice, and being kind means never speaking into the spiritual malaise and compromise in a region.

By the way, there is only one verse in the Bible with the word ‘nice’ in it and it is not a nice verse.

Jeremiah 12:6 NAS

“For even your brothers and the household of your father, even they have dealt treacherously with you, even they have cried aloud after you. Do not believe them, although they may say nice things to you.”

There are prophetic voices today that are called to speak into the spiritual superficiality of the saints in their sphere of influence. People not in tune with the Voice the prophetic voices are proclaiming find it easy to sit in judgement, all the while railing against the judgment prophetic voices are adjudicating.

Can’t we all get along is not a Biblical or Christian core value. It is a seeker sensitive superficial substitute for kingdom love and confrontation. It is powerless to change a life for it only holds a form of godliness while denying God’s power. Paul said to have nothing to do with people holding on to that subversion of kingdom life. I choose not to hang around with or listen to anyone who has a form of being godly without really representing God.

Too many Christians and their leaders are more concerned with advancing their kingdom and padding their pocket book than advancing God’s kingdom and reproducing Him in His people. Convenience is their core value and making sure they have their supplies stock piled controls their ability to speak truth when truth is not in vogue.

There is a gross misunderstanding on what “doing good” means. Jesus went about “doing good” but He also healed all those “oppressed with the devil.” This means so much more than casting devils out of people. I believe it includes that but advances to the place of casting people out of the devil.

Kevin, what do you mean? What I mean is Jesus functioned in full deliverance mode. He delivered people oppressed by the devil but He told people to stop playing around with the devil.

Here is a verse that is quoted often but misunderstood, misdiagnosed and misapplied.

Galatians 6:10

“So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household  of the  faith.”

What does doing good mean? And do you see how the good that is done is done for the good of everyone?

First of all, doing good Biblically has everything to do with setting and upholding a righteous standard. It involves doing the honorable thing that brings forth excellence and accomplishes the greatest benefit for everyone involved! Sometimes ‘doing good’ means someone gets their feelings hurt. Like those folks in the Temple who watched as Jesus tossed them and all their stuff out of His House!

For those who are not getting it yet, our standard is the life and ministry of Jesus, and the Word of God.

Secondly, the word kindness in the New Testament has everything to do with being fit for service, being useful and making the most of God using us to represent Him in the world. It also means ensuring those in your sphere of influence are fit for service and useful to God. There is no room for the unfit or useless in the fight of faith, or the fight for faith!

Jude 1 Weymouth

“33 Dear friends, although I was eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I found it necessary to write to you and urge you to continue your vigorous defense of the faith that was passed down to the saints once and for all. 4 For some people have slipped in among you unnoticed. They were written about long ago as being deserving of this condemnation because they are ungodly. They turn the grace of our God into uncontrollable lust and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.”

The greatest danger to Christianity are Christians who “slipped in unnoticed.” To slip in unnoticed one would have to have an appearance that creates a sense of security, all the while carry dangerous core values of compromise.

These slippery pretenders turn the grace of God into uncontrollable lust and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. By the way, Jude was writing to “believers”. These false believers believe that because God has already forgiven every sin of every person in Christ they can continue living like they have never personally met Jesus, much less gotten saved.

Lust does not necessarily have to do with illicit sexual behavior, although it can include it. Lust is a heart matter than drives a person to pursue that which is not theirs, or those who are not theirs. A person can lust for happiness and pursue relationships with people who will meet their felt needs but turn them away from the Lordship of Jesus.

They also “deny” our only Master and Lord. They don’t deny His existence for that would immediately give them away as pretenders. No, these smooth talkers look like saints but live like devils, in the church.

Jude says they are “deserving of condemnation because they are ungodly.” In other words, they are not like God nor are they really God’s. Only those who are “in Christ” are free from condemnation. When someone says, “I am a Christian” but are living like a sinner then condemnation is their reward.

Paul writes stating these type of people “dilute” the message of the Cross. Reducing the powerful effect of the Cross of Christ can manifest in many ways. One of those is to lower love to a level less than how Jesus demonstrated love. Some of his “love” was very confrontational and emotional! God’s love is not benign, wimpy or without an expected end.

God’s love manifested in the Man Christ Jesus so God could redeem fallen man! God did not send Love for the sake of running a pointless errand. Some Christians have reduced Love to something without real meaning, or purpose. As I have said many times before, there are way too many Christians who have created a Jesus made in their image.

Love came for the purpose of redemption, reconciliation, restoration, reformation and especially revolution. If your love does not include those things then your love is pointless, and redemptively powerless!

Jude writes, “to continue your vigorous defense of THE faith that was passed down once for all.”

To “defend vigorously” literally means to enter into the struggle for the integrity of THE faith. If you are not willing to enter that battle then it is better for you to stay out of the struggle. It comes from two Greek words – 1] to endeavor with strenuous zeal, to contend with all adversaries, and to compete against all opponents; and 2] to position yourself in, on, near, above, against, across and before that which is being contended against.

This word literally means to engage in close hand combat! Are you up for that? If not, stay out of the way! Everything and everyone that resists THE faith and the faithful is to be exposed, uprooted and removed. It may take until harvest time but it will happen.

If you cannot believe it just read how Jesus and the apostles dealt with those who were in their way! You will have to read without all your religiously biased opinions.

This ‘the faith’ is the one Jesus lived, modeled, died to defend, rose from the dead for, ascended into heaven in order to pour the Holy Spirit out on saints who are called to go and represent Him to a world He loves.

There are a lot of “faiths” preached but they are not congruent with THE faith Jesus handed off to the saints.

For instance, Paul  exhorts Timothy, the apostle in Ephesus with this,

1 Timothy 1

“18 This command I entrust to you, Timothy, my son, in accordance with the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you fight the good fight, 19 keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their  faith. 20 Among  these are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan, so that they will be taught not to blaspheme.”

Paul felt the need to “command” his spiritual son Timothy to do some very specific things.

  • Use the prophecies spoken to him to fight the good fight
  • Keep faith and a good conscience

But then he tells Timothy something so “not Christian”, at least to the “contemporary”, “relevant”, and “seeker” Christian. Paul handed Hymenaeus and Alexander over to Satan so they would stop blaspheming. To blaspheme means they were saying things that were not true. Misrepresenting truth can begin benignly but end up being a malignancy! Today we would call these men fake news reporters.

Hymenaeus’ name means belonging to marriage. He was a heretic because he presented himself as being a legitimate part of the Bride of Christ. He misrepresented Christ to people in the Body and misrepresented himself to the Body. He was a Christian in name only.

Alexander’s name means man defender. His sin must have been siding with Hymenaeus instead of upholding God’s honor and the honor of God’s man, Paul. Alexander was a man pleaser so he lived his life defending men who did not defend God.

Paul “handed” them over to Satan. Paul simply removed his apostolic covering from their lives and Satan had free reign to mistreat them. Paul had already turned a non repentant believer in Corinth over to Satan for not repenting of his grievous sin.

To “hand over” means to put into the use of another. In essence what this means is Paul’s feeling was – “If you want to behave like the devil then I take my hands off of you and place you in the hands of the one you are truly serving.”

How is that for seeker sensitive Christian love? The problem with this kind of loving discipline is in our day there are hundreds of churches a “Christian” can run to to escape the discipline of the Lord.

There are churches in every town that would love to have another body to count as they count the number of people attending their “worship” services. In the first century this type of behavior was not possible. There was one church in every city so it was very easy to pastor the population.

The writer of Hebrews details which faith Jude is writing about:

Hebrews 2 Amplified

“1 SINCE ALL this is true, we ought to pay much closer attention than ever to the truths that we have heard, lest in any way we drift past [them] and slip away. 2 For if the message given through angels [the Law spoken by them to Moses] was authentic and proved sure, and every violation and disobedience received an appropriate (just and adequate) penalty, 3 How shall we escape [appropriate retribution] if we neglect and refuse to pay attention to such a great salvation [as is now offered to us, letting it drift past us forever]? For it was declared at first by the Lord [Himself], and it was confirmed to us and proved to be real and genuine by those who personally heard [Him speak]. 4 [Besides this evidence] it was also established and plainly endorsed by God, Who showed His approval of it by signs and wonders and various miraculous manifestations of [His] power and by imparting the gifts of the Holy Spirit [to the believers] according to His own will.”

Look at the warnings and the instructions on the faith!

Warnings: About the great gift of salvation [THE faith]

  • We must pay much closer attention
  • We must not drift past
  • We must not slip away
  • How shall we escape
  • If we neglect
  • If we refuse to pay attention

Instructions: About the great salvation [THE faith]

  • It [message of salvation / message of THE faith]
  • Was declare at first by the Lord Himself – Originator of THE faith
  • It was continued by those who heard Him – 2nd generation of the keepers of THE faith
  • It was confirmed to us – 3rd generation of the keepers of THE faith
  • It was established and endorsed by God
  • God approved of it
  • By signs, wonders, various miraculous manifestations of His power
  • By imparting the gifts of the Holy Spirit to the believers according to His own will

My friends, that is THE ONLY Faith that is relevant! It was the only relevant faith in the 1st century and it is the only relevant faith in the 21st century.

Is that the faith that you profess?

Is that the faith that you defend?

If not, then you did not get the THE faith Jesus started or you are too compromised to defend God’s honor!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin

A Hisstorymaker

 

 

Mistreatment From Misdiagnosis

This is a follow up blog to my last one titled, The Shemitah, Blood Moons, The Pope And The Real People Of God. Since I wrote and published that blog “the windows of heaven were opened” and the State and people of South Carolina were introduced to challenges to their well-being that have not been seen in their State since the 1800’s. It has been reported that they [the citizens in the 1800’s] were inundated with large amounts of rain in a very short period of time. So, instead of a 1000 year event, as Governor Nikki Haley pronounced, it is really more like a 100 – 200 year event.

Back then there was not the amount of people, structures or infrastructure to be confronted with the severity of the situation!

I titled this blog Mistreatment From Misdiagnosis because there are those who want to believe that God Himself is responsible for this horrendous “heavenly” release of devastation. When doctors misdiagnose one of their patient’s problems they can prescribe a “cure” that produces the wrong prognosis.

Prognosis comes from two words that means, “to know before.” When what we “know before” is not what really is then the results can be disastrous. That is what is happening when people who say they know what God is up to, attribute what is happening in the world to Him, when He is not the source of the current events.

Their error is in what they believe they already know. These false prognosticators read into the Scripture current events instead of allowing Scripture to interpret Scripture. When Scripture is allowed to interpret Scripture we will discover that a lot of what is “supposed to happen” has already happened.

Let’s take a look at some very important truths that are hidden in plain sight. Those who have not already made up their mind as to the real culprit in this catastrophic circumstance will be presented with an very different picture of who is to blame for the plight of the people.

Psalm 24:1

“The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it. The world and all who dwell in it.”

The earth has always been, and will always be the Lords. One of the first mistreatments of Scripture is the belief that when Adam and Eve sinned against God they gave the serpent [devil] the title deed to the planet. They did not give him the title to the planet. They gave him their right to rule as ambassadors for God.

Matthew 5:5

“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”

Jesus unequivocally states in the Beatitudes that God has reserved the earth as part of His children’s inheritance.

Matthew 5:43-48

It’s Time To Act Up! Part 4 – Our Race

This is the fourth segment in the series It’s Time To Act Up! This series is designed to call Christian’s up [To Act UP] to their rightful place in God’s purposes in the earth.

Our race is our assignment on the planet!

 Luke 14:26,27,33

“If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.”

This is the same Jesus who when told His mother, sisters and brothers were wanting to see Him said, “Who is My mother, My sisters and My brothers?”

Jesus did not wait for the question to sink in nor did He wait to see what someone would answer. He immediately said, “I will tell you who My mother, sisters and brothers are. They are the ones who do the will of My Father.”

This is the same God who said, “Jacob I loved and Esau I hated.”

Jesus is saying that no relationship can come in between ours and His. When we place someone, anyone, in between ourselves and God we have replaced the Creator we worship and worship who He created.

Jesus is saying that we cannot love our life more than we love Him. He bought us! We are no longer our own!

“Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.”

Jesus did not say we must carry His cross. Nor does He expect us to carry His cross. His cross was His unique purpose for why He was on the planet. It was His mission and the fulfillment of the essence of His message.

Our cross is our unique purpose for being on the planet. It is unique to us. No one else can carry it just like we cannot carry someone else’s cross. Now, there are times when God will send someone to help us carry our cross just like He provided two men to carry Jesus’. That was a very short, very important, but very short moment in time.

 “So then, none of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions.”

Jesus said in another place, “A man’s life does not consist in the things he possesses.” God is not opposed to us having things. He is opposed to things possessing us. We must be free from believing we are owners of what we have. We and all we have are owned by God. If we choose not to relinquish control of our possessions we have replaced the Creator we worship with the worship of material things.

Our purpose is in Him, not our possessions.

Our identity is in Him, not in our stuff.

Jesus said, “Go and MAKE disciples …. teaching them to obey all that I commanded you.”

Disciple comes from the same root word as discipline. Even Jesus cannot discipline someone who is not a disciple!

Jesus did not say go and collect converts

He did not say, “Start a church to have a congregation!”  Or, “Start a ministry to have a platform so you can perform!

Conversion is the doorway into discipleship!

Salvation is free! Discipleship costs us everything!

The purpose of conversion is discipleship!

The purpose of discipleship is to reproduce and re-present the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ – on earth!

Every person who disciples people should be discipling converts to Jesus, not accumulating a crowd!

A convert’s main focus is getting to heaven.

“Get saved so you can go to heaven when you die” is the typical sales pitch used to convert sinners. “You don’t want to miss heaven” is another ploy used by those who don’t realize that those converts will miss a whole lot of heaven before they die.

A disciple’s main focus is getting heaven to earth!

A convert’s main focus is what can I get from you that will help me.

They are babes and babies are totally dependent on others for their survival

A disciple’s main focus is what can I give to you that will help you!

Our success is not measured in how many people we can attract, or how many people grow up!

Even Jesus could not get 100% participation! Even Jesus had close followers desert Him!

Our success is measured in – Did we follow Jesus where He led us? Have we been obedient?

 “Walk in a manner worthy of our calling” [Ephesians 4:1].

Our assignment carries specific and serious responsibilities!

Our assignment requires us to carry ourselves and those we are assigned to into a conflict with the conventional and contemporary culture of our day. Be they secular and or religious!

Jesus sent His disciples as sheep among wolves into the secular Roman world of fear and intimidation, and into the religious world of heathenism [you can do anything because anything goes, and Judaism [you can’t do much or you will get into trouble]!

Transformation [conversion to mature disciple] is not just for an individual to experience.

Personal transformation is to have an eternal affect on individuals, regions and the planet.

 Finishing our race means so much more than getting to the end of our life or our life’s work!

Completing our race means leaving something lasting [a significant legacy] that will have a righteous effect on the earth long after we depart, so that generations that follow can build on what we deposited, and expand what we started!

Discipleship is about pioneering, building and settling, not about squatting!

Pioneer

 Is a person who goes before others to see what is out there that is worth fighting for and mapping out a strategy to possess it. Pioneers expand our territory!

Builder

Is a person that sees what should be built to stabilize the area and to create an economy that will offer those who settle there an opportunity to be successful. Builders build on the territory pioneers find and expand!

Settler

Is a person who establishes healthy root systems to create a culture where the citizens can be creative and successfully pass on to future generations what they and others have worked to possess.  Settlers grow what has been possessed and build on the territory won in battle!

 Squatter

Is a person who just takes up space on what others have fought to obtain without improving it. Squatters are consumers, not producers!

Completing our race means we must complete our assignment!   Our race IS Our Assignment!

Ecclesiastes 9:10,11

 “10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work or device or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going. 11 I returned and saw under the sun that – The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor bread to the wise, nor riches to men of understanding, nor favor to men of skill; But time and chance happen to them all.”

In these two verses Solomon is revealing that there are certain strategies for success that may take creativity, thoughtfulness, a greater commitment to continue on, endurance and also a spirit of excellence.

Solomon is saying stop with the excuses such as, “I am not the fastest”, “I am not the strongest”, “I am not the wisest”, “I am not the most talented”.

Stop focusing on what you are not, and on what you don’t have, and on what you can’t do!

Solomon is saying everyone has time and opportunity so take full advantage of what you do have!

An excellent spirit enabled Joshua and Caleb to enter, experience, embrace, enjoy, expand and export the Promised Land, when their contemporaries compromised and were cut off.

Joshua and Caleb said, “God can, God will, so we can and we will.”

Solomon says we should find something to do and do it with all our might because we only have  a certain amount of time to accomplish it, and once we die our opportunity dies with us.

V10 – Might ~~ human strength – give it all you have to give

Root word ~~ to be firm

To be consistent and committed

Solomon is not insinuating we should do what we do alone [without God or without other people].

He is saying we should be totally committed to our purpose, and purposefully committed to God and all those who are affected by our purpose.

Spirit Led Decrees

  • I will give my all ALL the time!
  • I will not cheat myself, My God, nor the people God has put in my life!
  • I will not cheat the world around me of their opportunity to encounter the God who encountered Me, and gave my life purpose!

In verse 11 Solomon says,

“The race is not to the swift.”

“Nor the battle to the strong.”

“Nor bread to the wise.”

“Nor riches to the men of understanding.”

“Nor favor to men of skill.”

“But time and chance happen to them all.”

‘All’ being the swift and the not so swift, the strong and the not so strong, the wise and the not so wise, the understanding and those who do not understand, and the skillful and those who are not so skillful.

Solomon finishes verse 11 with words that can be misunderstood by those who do not take the time to dig down into the meat to find the structure [support].

V11 – Time ~~ to continue into the future; to move on, continue on and to advance. The Steve Miller Band sang a song called FLY LIKE AN EAGLE and it contained a lyric that said, “Time keeps on slippin, slippin, slippin. into the future.” Time moves on! Have we? Or are we stuck somewhere in our past?

24H x 60M = 1,440 minutes in a day OR 1,440 x 360 seconds = 518,400 seconds in a day

7D x 24H = 168 hours OR 7D x 1,440M = 10,800 minutes in a week OR 10,800 x 518,400 = 5.6 billion seconds in a week

52W x 168H = 8,736 hours OR 52W x 10,800M = 561,600 minutes in a year or 561,000 minutes x 5.6 billion seconds = A LOT

V11 – Chance ~~ to encounter, meet, and to reach the mark, or touch the boundary [goal].

Our English word ‘chance’ means something entirely different.

Among other things it denotes luck instead of focused hard work.

V11 – Happen ~~ to encounter, to meet, to meet without a prearrangement

Solomon is not saying don’t work hard, or try to improve because unless you are one of the lucky ones it will all be in vain!

Solomon is saying that everyone has an opportunity to move into their future, to reach the goal and finish their race – successfully!

The Bible, especially the apostle Paul, has much to say about our race.

Our race is not a sprint!

Our race is more than a marathon!

Our race is more of a cross country race that has elements associated with a decathlon and a steeplechase where we must traverse various types of terrains and obstacles that create various challenges.

The challenge produces character!

1 Corinthians 9:24-27

“24 Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. 25 And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. 26 Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. 27 But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.”

Paul says every believer is running their race but not every believer will receive the prize. We must remember that God does not give prizes to every participant like we do in our modern worldly method of  doing everything possible to make everyone feel good about themselves.

In other words, God has not created a culture where no one can be disappointed or get their feelings hurt.

Paul describes for us what he did to ensure success when he got to the end of his race. He paid a huge price by developing disciplines that carried him forward along the path God laid out for him.

Then Paul makes a statement that potentially can offend our modern mindset. He said, “Lest . . . I myself should become disqualified.”

WHAT?

There is NO way God would disqualify anyone!

That is a very true statement!

God does not disqualify people!

People disqualify themselves!

Warning! Warning! Warning! Those are the words of the most effective disciple of Jesus the Christ. That is the theology of the most thought of, compelling, culture revolutionizing, committed Christian other than Jesus the first Christian.

 2 Timothy 4:7

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

Here this same revolutionary visionary said three very important things.

There is a fight and it is a “good fight”.

There is a race and it is “the race”.

There is a faith and it is “the faith”.

Paul said that he entered the good [worthwhile] fight and he fought it!

Paul said that he entered the race [his potential, God’s purpose, and God’s promise] and he finished it!

Paul said that he entered the faith [the faith Jesus the Christ authored and handed off to His disciples] and he kept it!

And all of this from a man who laid his life down for the world and the church, for local churches and for those who were a part of his apostolic team.

By the way, Paul suffered from the hands of Judaizers, unsaved Jews, hostile Gentiles and even those on his team. Paul saw members of his team desert him and there were times he “despaired of life.”

The behavior of others should not deter, our cause us to detour from our race.

Hebrews 12:1-3

“1 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.”

Paul says that there are witnesses! Who are these witnesses? You can find them in Chapter 11. In chapter 11 we find witnesses that experienced great trials, breakthroughs, victories, answered prayers, deliverances, etc.

And then there were “the others”. At the end of chapter 11 we read about those who kept the faith to their death without experiencing breakthroughs, victories, answered prayers, deliverances, etc.

They all ran their race to win and they all won. Their outcomes may have differed but the one constant was they continued steadfast until the very end!

Paul says we must –

  • “Lay aside [get rid of] every weight” that weighs [slows] us down
    • Weights can be good things but don’t qualify as God things
    • They can be human relationships with friends, family, mates and even potential mates
    • They can be job opportunities like promotions or relocations
    • They can be ministry opportunities with ministries that come close to having your same core values but differ nonetheless in areas of personal experiences and revelation in God’s Word.
    • Weights can be relationships with people who are not contributing to our success
      • We must tread lightly here
      • We can grow when we are mistreated
      • People who mistreat us are not our enemy, for our warfare is not against flesh and blood
      • We are to bless those who curse us and do good to them who use us
      • This does NOT mean we have to remain in relationship with them
        • If the person is a family member such as a spouse we cannot cut them out of our life but we must realize they are not our Lord
        • If relating to them is dangerous then we can create boundaries, safe distances that will ensure we can be our true selves in God
        • We are ultimately responsible to obey God when man is wanting us to do things that are a violation of God’s will for our lives
        • Jesus is the only Person who publicly hung naked for us and He is the only one who called us in our respective holy calling as a Christian
        • We see this a lot when it comes to husbands and wives trying to show honor to their unbelieving, unspiritual or uninterested spouse
  • “Lay aside [get rid of] THE sin that so easily ensnares [entangles, trips us up, side tracks, derails, ship wrecks] us.”
    • We all have a “The sin” that so easily ensnares us

So that we can –

  • “Run with endurance” [steadfastness, consistency – in the NT endurance is the characteristic of a person who will not swerve from their deliberate purpose and loyalty to the faith by even the greatest trials and sufferings]
  • “The race” is our particular purpose for being on the planet

Paul then describes how to manage our life so that we will be successful. He says,

  • “Looking to Jesus” [Maintaining eye contact with Jesus which is a description of deep intimacy]

In human relationships the greatest intimacy, whether it is conversational or sexual intercourse, is experienced when we look into each other’s eyes.

Sex was first connected to intercourse in 1798 according Dictionary.com.

It is very difficult to have intimacy on any level with abusive people [people who abuse our kindness, our acceptance and our hospitality].

Jesus said, “If someone slaps you on the cheek offer them the other cheek.” But when He got slapped during His mock trial He did not offer the other cheek. He said, “If I have done nothing wrong why did you slap Me?”

Maybe what we thought Jesus meant is NOT what Jesus meant. Just saying!

Because Jesus IS [always present tense] –

  • “The author of our faith”
  • “Our” is in italics because it is not in the Greek

We have no other faith other than the faith Jesus authored.

  • “The finisher of our faith”

Jesus is not only the author, the One who scripted what faith is, but Jesus is the One who gives fulfillment to all that faith is and what faith does.

Our only role-model for life and ministry whose example is ~

  • Endurance

Steadfastness, consistency, unswerving from His deliberate purpose in life and loyalty to the faith, and the Father who sent Him to model for all mankind in the face of the greatest trials and sufferings.

  • He endured the Cross
  • He endured the shame
  • He was humiliated by being publicly identified as a criminal [sinner]

He WAS NAKED

  • He was stripped of all human dignity and modesty
  • He endured the hostility from sinners [all those who do not appreciate and do not accept what He did for them]

What is your race?

What is your assignment?

Where is your assignment?

Are the people you are relating to relating to your assignment?

Are they helping you grow in God?

What are you doing in preparation to run your race and stay in the race to the end?

Who or what have you allowed in your life that is impeding you running your race?

What weights are you carrying that are not assisting you in your race?

Are you willing to lay aside every weight that is keeping you from being you in God?

If not, why not?

Who is your daddy?

What does fatherhood look like to you?

Who called you?

Who affirms you?

Who holds you accountable?

Can you be held accountable?

Keep THE Faith! Keep THE Passion!

Our hunger and thirst FOR God escorts us into deep satisfaction IN God!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin
A Hisstorymaker!
Web: bethelbythesea.org / drkevinmdrury.wordpress.com
Facebook: Kevin Drury Ministries / kevin.drury.35
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Worship Is An Act Of Love And War #8 – Overcoming Our Personal Goliath

“Blessed be the LORD my Rock, Who trains my hands for war, And my fingers for battle.” Psalm 144:1

David worshiped God for many reasons but in this verse he stated he worshiped because God had enabled him to effectively use his hands in warfare.

David was a mighty worshiping warrior!
He was a mighty worshiping intercessor!
He was a mighty prophetic worshiper!
He was a mighty worshiping protector of God’s purposes on the earth!

David was skilled with his hands in warfare. He seized a lion and a bear with his bare hands and killed them so that his father’s sheep would be protected.

He used a sling to launch a rock into the forehead of Goliath.

Do you know Goliath? He was the giant that stood at a distance and taunted God and His people. Please notice Goliath never attacked by approaching the army of Israel. He simply launched words of accusation from a distance.

Goliath is a contradiction. Usually things look bigger the closer you get to them. In his case, Goliath was in reality only a giant at a distance.

David is the one who attacked. He ran toward Goliath. And before he launched the rock from his sling he launched his confidence through his words. As David approached Goliath he found him to be weak and vulnerable to God’s truth.

Once he killed Goliath he then took Goliath’s sword and cut off Goliath’s head. Swords in Scripture speak of words. The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. When our enemy speaks to us he is attempting to cut us down with his sword.

Instead of empowering your Goliath’s by viewing them at a distance run toward them declaring the truth of who you are in Christ and watch them fall to the ground and die. Then cut off their head with their own sword, as David did.

David continued to use Goliath’s sword in battle to defeat the enemies of His Lord.

I do not believe that is why David praised God in this instance.

I believe David praised God because when David worshiped the powers of darkness were neutralized and even retreated. I believe David learned this valuable bit of intel when he was a servant in King Saul’s house, and in those far fields of isolated faithful service for his father.

“So it came about whenever the evil spirit from God came to Saul, David would take the harp and play it with his hand; and Saul would be refreshed and be well, and the evil spirit would depart from him.” 1 Sam 16:23

The Bible does not say what I am about to write but I believe it is very possible that David’s private worship in the far fields of his father’s property, and his public worship in the courts of the King, created an atmosphere where the giant was not able to cross into the personal space of God’s people. It also created a great confidence in David’s heart that God was in control, not the enemy.

Worship is an act of love and war and when we worship we connect with the heart of God and God’s heart is displayed through us in great courage to face our personal giants.

If we cannot face and conquer our personal giants then we will never be effective in defeating the giants that have paralyzed and are destroying our society.

David never let his personal giant, the need and hunt for personal and physical intimacy, get in the way of his personal and spiritual hunt for intimacy with God.

David spent time with God and because he spent time with God even during his personal struggles he was able to overcome them. From his place of personal victory he was able to carry his victory into the greater battle for the souls of people, the soul of a region and the soul of the world.

From his loins, the place of his greatest personal battle, came the Messiah, the Savior of all mankind. While not every person will receive salvation they have been provided that wonderful gift.

Do not allow your personal struggles to keep you from the presence of the only Person that can give you victory.

Winning your personal victories will create confidence and courage so you can bring victory to a multitude of other people.

Personal obedience releases corporate blessing! Exponential effect is one way to see greater results in advancing God’s kingdom in the earth.

Staying Hungry And Thirsty For God!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin
A Hisstorymaker