Thursday, April 30, 2009

Building Safe Homes

Every Home Needs Some Strong Walls
Pr 25:28 He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls.
The devil hates rules – He hates walls that keep him out. He loves to be able to just walk into a home and do as he pleases! The best thing to do is make sure he can’t get in (Eph 4:27 Neither give place to the devil.). And the only way to do that is by having some protective walls of separation between you and the devil – let’s call it insulation! The Bible calls it separation, and to have it, you have to put on “the whole armour of God!”

Rules, control, structure – they all are compared to protective walls around a city. Without rules, without control, a person’s life is under constant attack and ultimately crumbles under the pressures of life! Most of the 60’s and 70’s generation grew up throwing off every rule and moral obligation as fast as possible – they tore down the walls that protected them from destruction! And thus explains the high divorce rate, high suicide rate, the high domestic violence rate, the high crime rate, the high rate of drug-use – and on and on it gos?

All of that has always been out there
1. Divorce did not start in the 1960’s
2. Crime wasn’t invented with the Beatles
3. Sex outside of marriage didn’t start at Woodstock in 1969
4. Alcoholic drink didn’t begin with Dean Martin in the 1950’s – even though he drank enough for a hundred people!

No! Those things were always there – but they weren’t wide-spread. Why? What happened? Simply, Family, and Society walls were pulled-down. Protective walls of separation were slowly, methodically weakened, and then torn down. And anyone who tried to stop or slow the decay was rejected as part of the fringe element – labelled fundamentalists, and party-poopers, and square, and legalists, and joy-killers, and dictators But they were really, only wall-builders! Lovers of their homes, and communities. People who knew what life would be like without certain, specific walls

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Blessed Beyond All Measure

Yesterday was Levi's birthday and we had a great time. It was "his day". After we took his brother to school we all on post for groceries then home to ride his bike until 3:00. I took him with me to get Titus from school. We had to have a snack, so we went to Casey's for a drumstick for each of us. We then went to the park for about 30 minutes. He decided he wanted to go to a different park so we got back in Papa's truck and went to the big park (playground) across town, they had a ball. We came back home to find that when we were gone Mommy and Grannie had fixed his favorite supper, tattor casserole. His friend Eric (kid from up the street) came and ate with us. Then we had cake that he helped Grannie bake and decorated himself.

I am so blessed to have 6 healthy, beautiful grandchildren. God gave Jane and me two daughters that we messed up a lot with when they were growing up. But somehow they both married boys who have taken good care of them. Both of their families are faithful and active in their church. The grandchildren are in the best possible place for them to grow up with a love for the Lord, just as we tried to instill in their mothers.

I thank God for my family. I am blessed beyond all measure. If I could wish only one thing for you it would be that you too could have a family that loves the Lord and each other with all their heart. I feel so sorry for the families that don't know what it's like to have what we have. I feel sometimes that God picked out our family to bless in a special way as an example for those around us. What an awesome responsibility we have to model a Godly family for all who come in contact with us. Weather here in Kansas, or in North Carolina where Bill and Nikki live, or in New York where Kevin and Holly live, we all carry this same responsibility.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Money and Church. Oh No!

I have found that the area of "church finances" above all others has caused more trouble for the pastor in a small town church. Often there is one person that has the absolute control of this area and will have to be forced to relinquish that control.

Most small town churches don't have a budget, so they have to vote on everything that is needed (of course this causes fights). A good budget will help to eliminate the fussing about what the money is spent on. If it was approved in the budget then it is not necessary to vote on it.

The easiest way to start a church budget is by dividing things in thirds: 33% staff (salaries and benefits), 33% ministries, and 33% buildings and capitol growth. One really good idea is that of separating the missions from the regular church account this is something that can be a great benefit. Then divide the missions just like you did the regular offerings into thirds: 33% foreign missions, 33% home based missions, and 33% projects (conferences, missionary helps, guest speakers). I have found that when I separate the two both will increase. These percentages can be adjusted depending on the particular situations.

In rural areas the Church income is very cyclical. They often have an aversion to church debt – although they think nothing of personal or farm debt. Since their resources are limited, the often have a “make do” mentality. I call it the duct tape syndrome. We will just patch it up and see how much longer we can make it last. If they become passionate about something – they will support it. Somehow, they come up with the money – but only if they feel passionate about it. Some people use money as way of influencing decisions in small churches.

It is amazing how many small town churches exist because 2 or 3 families are paying all the bills to keep the doors open. So often money is used to keep the pastors hands tied. This is "responsibility without control" a recipe for disaster. The pastor is held responsible for how the church operates but is not given control. I think it is very dangerous for the pastor to have access to the monies. The budget will give him the control he needs to run the day to day affairs of the church. I don't think the pastor should be on the accounts "carry the checkbook".

It is my opinion that the area of "Church Finance" will stagnate the growth of the church about as much as any other one thing. I also believe it can be easily taken care of if the parties are will to cooperate and get some guidance.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Get Back in the Game

I found this piece somewhere I know I did not write it but it was in my outlines. I t is good and very helpful so I thought I would post it to see if it might help one of you.
Sometimes life throws curves at us that take the wind from our sail. If we aren’t careful we can allow the injury to haunt us for life; never regaining what we have lost. Have you lost a job recently? Have you had a business failure? Did you suffer from divorce? Has the person you trusted the most hurt you the deepest? What steps should you take to get back on track and succeed again? Here are a few suggestions to consider during the recovery process:
1. Reconnect with God. This is always a wise idea, but it becomes necessity at times like this.
2. Evaluate your life. Use this time to reevaluate the decisions you have made in life and what got you in the situation you are in today. Are there changes that you need to make? If so, be willing to change. If you did nothing wrong in this case, release yourself from responsibility.
3. Create some new dreams. Don’t allow past mistakes to keep you from discovering your passions in life. Keep those creative forces going in your mind so you’ll be ready when the next big opportunity comes along.
4. Call in the advisors. Others can usually see things we cannot see. They approach our life from a different perspective. Give someone you trust, who has your best interest at heart, access to the painful part of your life.
5. Don’t take your pain and anger out on others. It doesn’t make things better (usually worse) and it hurts people who did nothing to deserve it.
6. Take a break. Don’t expect to recover immediately. Your struggles probably didn’t start overnight and they will not end overnight. Give yourself time to heal.
7. When it’s time, be willing to risk again. Yes, you may get hurt again, but just as life is full of disappointments, it’s also full of joy and discovery. Remember that everyone is not the same and every situation is different. Don’t hold your past experiences against others who weren’t even there.
8. Don’t let failure or disappointment in life to define you. Be defined by God’s love for you and His plan for your life.
9. Do something. Rest yes, but at some point, just do something to stay busy and occupy your mind. It’s true that the “idle mind is the devil’s workshop”. If you lost your job, find somewhere to volunteer until you find another job. If you lost a relationship, find friends through your church to keep from being alone.
10. Get back in the game. Choose your next steps carefully and don’t keep repeating the same mistakes, but at some point it will be time to enjoy life again. Life was not meant to be lived on the sidelines.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

These are some statements that I have heard great pastors say. I write down and try to use things other pastors say and I thought I would list some of them here for you.

· Leadership is not a position – Leadership is a function
· The first function of a leader is to make the purpose of the organization known.
· The purpose of the organization should be seen in the vision
· The leader should personify the purpose
· The purpose of Northwest Baptist Church is “to know Christ and to make Christ known to a world who knows Him not”.
· Leaders who stop growing don't last – Leaders continue to stretch themselves.
· Maturity is balanced growth
· You grow by nutrition not addition
· Addition is the result of nutrition
. Get the proper nutrition (Bible, Prayer) and exercise (church, giving, witnessing) growth is automatic
· Surround yourself with good people
· Don’t be afraid of disagreement
· Meet your troubles head on
· Don’t be afraid to scrap your ideas
· Leaders must see farther down the road than those he leads
· Avoid unclear communication
· Obey every spiritual impulse
· Three leaders that people want to follow
1. They know someone others do not know
2. They do something others have not done
3. They know something others do not know
· People will only follow you nowhere once or twice; they will then look for someone else to follow.
· Leadership is the ability to influence
· People follow who we are more than what we say
· Followers look for places to lay the blame for failures – Leaders look for ways to make improvement
· Leaders produce leaders – Dictators produce followers
· The cream always rises to the top
· Everything we do in life should be working toward a goal.

If these are a help let me know and I will post more later

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Valleys After the Mountians

JOHN 6:16-21

All of us like to live on the mountaintop. We want to feel the blessings of God. We want to feel His power and the warmness of His smile upon us. We love to ex­perience the joy of being a Christian! But what happens when we come down from the mountain? It is an inescapable truth that after every mountain comes a valley! We cannot remain on the mountaintop forever! Jesus said, "...In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." (John 16:33b).

The disciples had been on the mountain with Jesus. They had just witnessed one of His greatest miracles—The Feed­ing Of The Five Thousand. They experienced, if you will, a mountaintop experience! They had witnessed the great power and provision of the Son of God! But this was fol­lowed by darkness at the midnight hour, tempest tossed, in the midst of the Sea of Galilee. What was the disciples reaction to what they were facing? V19 says, "…and they were afraid."

We, as Christians, enjoy the miracle of the new birth. We rejoice in becoming possessors of the Holy Spirit. We shout in being made a new creature in Christ Jesus; and we rejoice in our first love, but then suddenly the storm clouds arise, temptations begin to fall upon us, trials seem to be on every hand. What is our reaction? Many times, it is just as the disciples-FEAR instead of FAITH!

We all love the mountaintops, but we must acknowledge that there will be valleys also! In these valleys, we will suffer storms, sorrows, trials, and tribulations! How do we respond when we come to our valley? : FEAR or FAITH?

Let us ask God to give us the faith to face our valleys which lie ahead! Friend, you may be walking through the darkest valley of all—the valley of sin. You may have forsaken God and His will for your life but don’t let the fear you are facing keep you from turning to God. Simply repent and ask His forgiveness and He will lead in the way He wants you to go!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Well Done

Mt 25:21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
People seek approval. (Teens want the approval of their friends. Employees seek the approval of their boss.)
We should all seek GOD’S APPROVAL! Does God approve of what I’m doing?

I. “WELL” —Approval of the CALIBER of our work (Excellence)
Anything worth doing, is worth doing “well.” The Bible says Jesus “hath done all things well…” (Mk. 7:37). HE IS OUR EXAMPLE. Too many do things halfheartedly. Mediocre ministries. Col 3:23 “Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.” Who are you doing it for? Ecc 9:10— “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might…” Jesus deserves our BEST.
II. “DONE”— Approval of the COMPLETION of our work (Achievement).
Our job is not done yet! It is no time to quit now. Finish what you start. God’s never commends quitters. What have you ever accomplished for the Lord’s sake? The desire accomplished is sweet to the soul (Prov. 13:18).
III. “THOU GOOD” — Approval of the CHARACTER of the worker (Integrity).
Notice, this is an individual commendation (“THOU…”). We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ. Jesus went about “doing good.” God does not commend just any kind of doing, but doing the GOOD THING. Goodness is part of the fruit of the spirit (Gal. 5:22). IV. “FAITHFUL” — Approval of the CONSISTENCY of the worker (Determination)
And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. (Gal. 6:9). The one thing God requires of us is FAITHFULNESS (1 Cor. 4:2). Are you faithful? Are you consistent?
V. “SERVANT” — Approval of the COMPLIANCE of the worker (Self-denial).
A servant has no plan of his own. A servant has no property of his own. A servant has no problems of his own.

CON: These are characteristics of one who is approved of God—All five are ESSENTIAL for God’s approval.
1. Your CALIBER of your work
2. Your COMPLETION of your task.
3. Your CHARACTER in your work
4. Your CONSISTENCY at your work
5. Your COMPLIANCE to God’s direction.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Pastoring is like Parenting

Often the pastor’s role is one of a parent, a coach or a Chaplin. A CEO style leadership is the death of a small church ministry. They want to be loved and cared for, not commanded. Decision making is often informal and tribal. Things like Roberts Rules of Order frustrate them and they will often use that against you if you insist on doing it “by the book”.

They view the relationship of a Pastor to the church much like a marriage. Once they decide you are “in”, they get nervous when you start talking about other ministries. In their minds it would be like a husband talking positively about other women. Most of them take great pride in having a “Full Time” pastor. In some declining rural areas it is seen as a status symbol.

In rural ministry you cannot lead people until they know that you love them and are committed to them. Until you have formed relationship, you have not earned the right to lead. Too many pastors make changes without understanding the need for relationships first. When the people know you love them and are committed to them – they will follow you. In fact – they will often overlook your faults and mistakes when they never have to question your love or commitment.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Major Changes

There are many issues that must be overcome when taking the pastorate of any church. Most Bible college Pastoral Leadership courses teach the students not to make any "Major" changes in the 1st year. Sometimes it is very hard to not make these needed changes right away. A lot of Pastors make the mistake of moving to quickly because of the desire to get started on their programs. I have found that if I just start reaching into the community by door knocking and visiting dilinquint members. I can, over a period of a few months, gain the confidence of the people.

Dr Russell Rice taught us that it takes about two years for you to learn to love the people of the new church as a pastor, but it takes about four to five years for the people to learn to love you as a pastor. I have certainly found this to be true. You need to be there long enough to marry some of their children and bury some of their loved ones. This will endear you to them as a pastor. I have also found that in smaller towns its is even more true because you are a "foreigner" to them. It takes a lot of time for them to accept you into their community.

The history of a church is something they take great pride in. They are the ones who have managed to keep the doors open in spite of everything through the years. You need to know the entire history of the church. Read the notes from business meetings (if they have some). Talk to the older people, become a student of their church's history. You will find that by honoring their heritage, they will listen to you because you understand them.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

See Your Calling

One weakness of the small town church is pastoral discouragement. In many small town churches the pastor is the outsider, a fact often headlined by the common phrase, "We've seen pastors come and go here." Pastoral tenure is generally very short in North American churches -- a fact which complicates ministry in a small town church, especially when mixed with inadequate resources and the control of a few strong families in an exclusionary atmosphere. Sometimes discouragement comes simply from inappropriate comparison. The key issue is meeting needs through the Word of God, not a sense of self-actualization through successful involvement in the numbers game. "Churches grow by nutrition not addition"

Then too, few things are private in a small community. Everyone knows the pastor's family, his finances, and his faults. Some men find this transparency difficult to handle and therefore view the small town church only as a stepping-stone to a "stronger ministry." Inadequate congregational identity may lead to inadequate ministerial identity, an uncertain road to discouragement. Pastors of small town churches should memorize and frequently recite 1 Cor 1:26-30.

Brothers, think of what you were when you were called.
1Co 1:26-30 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


The message of the Bible is really very simple. God has only given us two basic themes in His word. The first message is God's message to sinners, " Here's How to Go to Heaven ". The second message is, " Here's How to be Happy While You Are waiting to get there." This is a message to Christians.

There are numerous places in God's Word that bear this out. Jesus said, " I am come that ye might have life and that ye might have it more abundantly." (John 10:10b) He is speaking of two different things here. Notice that first He wants us to have "life". "Life" here is "Eternal Life" or salvation. He came to give eternal salvation to every person who would receive it. Notice also that He came to give "Abundant Life". Now, that is something else. "Abundant life" is speaking of happiness. Life is birth. Abundant life is growth and maturity. This is just one of dozens of verses that refer to both "Heaven" and "Happiness"

John 10:9 says, " I am the door, by me if any enter in he shall be saved", that is talking about being saved. That has to do with going to heaven. The next part of the verse says "he shall go in and out and find pasture". This part of the verse is talking about feeding and growth. That has to do with happiness. This is another "Heaven and Happiness" verse.

In I John 3:23 John writes "And this is His commandment, that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ".(23a) Now if a person does what this part of the verse says, he will be saved and will go to heaven when he dies. The rest of the verse says "and love one another, as He gave us commandment" (23b). If we practice what this part of the verse says, the result will be happiness. there it is again "Heaven and Happiness".

The first part of all three of these verses relate to God and have to do with going to heaven. The last part of these verses relate to people or surroundings and have to do with adjustment, growth, maturity, or development, and result in happiness.

I know I am going to Heaven and that's wonderful, but God also wants us to be Happy while we are on our way.

Saturday, April 18, 2009


The scholarly Bible preacher, Dr. Kenny McComas, tells of a weed in South America that compares to the tumble weed in the prairie lands of North America.
When the ground becomes too dry to support life it loosens its roots and frees itself to roll wherever the wind may take it. If it finds a little moisture it hesitates there and puts down its roots and absorbs what it can. When that spots becomes dry it again pulls up its roots and rolls on.
Most of its lifetime is spent searching for life giving water and seldom comes upon an area that will give permanent satisfaction of its need.
The rocky dry surface of the world system is like that. People go from experience to experience, job to job, from one mate to another trying to find what they are looking for. Many try alcohol, drugs, sex, pleasure and such, but never seem to find happiness.

Paul speaks of being carried about by every wind of doctrine. The various religions of the world and humanistic philosophies of self seeking people never provide peace and satisfaction.
Paul also said, Php 4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. Paul tried to find what he was searching for in the office of the Pharisee in the political arena and intellectual pursuit and in striving for financial success but to no avail.
He found what he was looking for in Christ on the Damascus road. His values were changed and he put down his roots in a Biblical relationship with the Lord.
He gives some unique advice to those who are searching and seeking. Php 4:6-7 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Friday, April 17, 2009


PSA. 42:5,11 43:5 “ Why Art Thou Cast Down, O My Soul, Hope Thou In God.”

INTRO: The Bible is filled with situations where there was no hope from the human standpoint, then God comes on the scene and everything changes.

1. ISRAEL GROANING IN EGYPTIAN BONDAGE. (Exo. 2:23 - 25; 3:7 - 9)
A. God saw their circumstance.
B. God heard their cry.
C. God knew condition.
A. The Sin And Disobedience of Aachan. 7:1
B. The Suffering And Defeat At Ai. 7:5
C. The Supplication of Joshua And Direction From The Almighty. 7:6,7
A. He was Bound, Beaten, & Blinded. V.21
B. They Boasted, Blasphemed, & Belittled him. V23-25
C. His Plan, His Prayer, & His Power. V.26,28,30
A. He Feared For His Life. V.2
B. He Fled For His Life. V.3
C. His Foolish Request. V.4
A. Running Away From Responsibility. 1:3
B. Rebel Brought Retribution. 1:17
C. Revival Came To Ninevah. 2:5
A. Crisis & Shipwreck. V.14
B. Challenge & Encouragement. V.25
C. Courage & Deliverance. V.44
A. Exiled From Family & Friends. V.9
B. Experienced God’s Presence & Plan. V.10,11
C. Excitement of Future Happenings. V.19

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Don't Worry

MATTHEW 6:25-34
"Don t worry about it" Have you ever had those words said to you? Did it work? Probably not! Easy words to say, but hard to put into practice. In essence that is what the Scripture says in verse 25: "Don t worry about it!" But it goes on to tell us how not to worry. It is one thing to tell someone "Just don t worry about it" But it is another thing to tell them how they are suppose to keep from worrying about it!
Quotes about Worrying:
"Blessed is the man who is too busy to worry in the daytime and too sleepy to worry at night"
"A problem not worth praying about is not worth worrying about"
"Why pray when you can worry"
"Today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday"
"The only place perpetual worry will get you ahead of time is the cemetery."
Worry effects our total being! Therefore, “The Ways Not To Worry” involves our total being: mind, spirit, and body. We must get our mind, spirit, and body involved in certain things in order not to worry. Now let s look at The Ways To Stop Worrying! How can we Stop Worrying?
1. "Behold the fowls" Look searchingly! Behold their bounty and their plenty! Birds are always singing in thanksgiving
2. "Consider the lilies" Learn and observe thoroughly! Observe their Beauty and their Prosperity!
1."Much better than they" To a greater extent more valuable/superior than they!
2. If God does all this for plants and animals, what will He do for us!
3. When we are worrying our Thinking isn’t right,
4. We are Superior to plants and animals
5. If they are the Glory of His creation, have much more should we be!
1. He clothes the grass of the field today is and tomorrow cast into oven
2. It is gone after one season, a short time then never to return- We are eternal!
3. If If He does all that for the grass, how much more will He do for us in magnitude and quantity!
4. It is a sign of little faith to worry about these things - Trust in the work of His Grace!
I. Life of Gentile was consumed in pursuit of materialism! (v21,24)
2. He says:"Don t worry!" Because your "Heavenly Father Knows" you need all these things.
3. "Your Father" or "Heavenly Father" is repeated 12 times in this chapter!
4. Trust in His Graciousness, Recognize the Wisdom of His Grace - He knows!
1. Don t worry, "Seek" Search after, Pursue, Desire, Strive for, Endeavor!
2. "The Kingdom of God" God s rule, His Will done on earth as in Heaven!
3. "His Righteousness" When God rules there is Perfect Righteousness!
4. Seek, Strive for, Thrust yourself into the Goodness of His Rule or Will!
I. We have a Divine Warranty - "All these things shall be added unto you"
2. Warranty backed by His Reputation and Riches!
3. "Shall be added" Future Passive - Warranty only good after we Seek First His Kingdom!
4. We must Thrust ourselves into His Goodness, into His service, and He will add these things!

"Don t Worry about it!" How do you do this? Think about His Greatness. Trust in His Graciousness, and Thrust into His Goodness! This includes your Thoughts, Faith, and Actions. If we will renew our minds in the Word, this will build our Faith in Him, which will result in Actions. The greatest substitute for Worry is His Will and Work! Are you in them both today? Will you Seek first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

How Teacher Respond

Blow up
Get Angry
Lose control
Grit teeth, fume.
Yep - Un-Huh
Laziest man in the world.
Missionary, A man eating lion in chewing up your mother-in-law.
Patience Power.
Haste makes waste.
Get the mind of God.
Look before you leap.
Be not like the Horse or the Mule.
Many problems work themselves out.
Longfellow - “After all the best thing to do when it’s raining is let it rain.
Ignor it, maybe it will go away.
Turn the other cheek.
Compliment not Complain.
Laugh when you ought to cry.
Praise the Lord in time of trouble.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


In Matt. 18 there are 7 graces of Greatness
Humility, 1-4
Responsibility, 5-9
Christ-Likeness, 10-11
Genuine Concern, 12-14
Discipline, 15-17
Fellowship, 18-22
Forgiveness, 23-35

Mt 18:23-35 Mt 18:23 Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants. And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents. But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt. But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest. And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt. So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done. Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.

Key thought in last grace – verse 34 “delivered him to the tormentors” & verse 35 “likewise…. unto you”

Eph. 4. – Rules of Communication
#1 – Be Honest v 25
#2 – Be Forgiving v26-27
#3 – Be Graceful v 29
#4 – Be Kind v 32

Note in Rule #2 - be forgiving & don’t give place to the devil
2 Cor. 2.10-11 – be forgiving or you will let Satan get an advantage “We are not ignorant of his devices
Satan’s Devices
But, his doom is sealed – Rev. 20.10
And, remember “greater is He…” 1 Jn. 4.4
And also, “we are more than conquerors” Ro. 8.37

Who is it that you need to forgive today in order that you won’t give Satan room to work in your life?

Monday, April 13, 2009

I Am Not A Power Hitter

Before I preached yesterday I talked to our church about my preaching. This is what I said:
When I was in high school I played baseball. I was not a power hitter I was the lead off batter. For three of the four years in high school I was the lead off hitter. I had the best on base percentage of everyone on the team. It was not my job to hit a home run. My job was to get on base anyway I could; a base hit, a walk or even hit-by-a-pitch, as long as I got on first base I had done my job. I only hit 2 home runs the whole four years of high school ball and one was at our home field which did not have a fence. I hit it between the out fielders and it kept on rolling (a gapper).
My preaching is a lot like my hitting was. I am not a great preacher I don't have many "home-run" messages but most of mine are singles. Mt desire is not to preach the greatest massage you have ever heard on the resurrection. I just want to help you, all of you "hit a single".
I learned a long time ago that if my message comes from my head it will only reach your head, but if my message comes from my heart it will reach their heart. That is the kind of preacher I am. I want to make a impact on my town and I believe we can, not by some big thing but buy hitting singles after single after single. The multitude (Leavenworth) will be reached one at a time. I think it would be nice to hit a home-run every once in a while but I am not a power hitter.
If the Lord will let me hit lead off for the rest of my ministry that's ok with me.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


Ac 1:3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God:
Some of the many "infallible proofs" of Scripture concerning the resurrection of Christ:
He was dead
Medical evidence of John 19.31-35
Centurion witness - Matt. 27.54; Mark 15.39; Luke 23.47
Roman authorities announced Him dead - John 19.32-33
No one questioned then or during lifetime of original witnesses
He was buried in a sealed, guarded tomb
The tomb was made sure - Matt. 27-62-66
The tomb was secured by a large stone, a seal, and a Roman guard detail
On the 3rd day His body was no longer in the tomb
All 4 gospels say the tomb was empty
The Roman guards say it was empty
The Jewish leaders made up stories to explain why it was empty
On Pentecost, no one in Jerusalem contradicted the fact when Peter declared that Jesus had risen from the grave
Over 500 witnesses saw Him alive
The New Testament records 11 separate appearances over 40 days to more that 500 people
The witnesses had hard evidence that they had seen Jesus (Luke, "many infallible proofs")
Jesus ate with several witnesses and gave other physical evidence that He was alive.
His disciples were radically changed
Thomas was changed from a doubter to a believer
Peter was changed from a fearful denier to a bold proclaimer of the gospel
James, the Lord's half brother, was changed from a despiser to an apostleEven Saul, an enemy of the church, was changed from a zealous persecutor to a powerful apostle


I COR. 15:14 And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.

A. “ By which ye are saved.” ( 1 Cor. 15:2)
B. “ thou shall be saved.” (Rom. 10:8,9)
A. Matt. 12:39,40 “the sign of the prophet Jonah”
B. Rom. 1:3,4 “ by the power of the Resurrection”
A. Psa. 16:9,10 “ Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell “
B. Illustration of Jonah.
A. Mt. 20:18,19 “ And the third day rise again “
B. Mt. 17:9 “ until the son of man be risen again from the dead “
C. Lu. 9:22 “ be slain and raised again the third day”
D. Jn. 10:17,18 “ I lay down my life that I might take it up again”
Acts 1:21,22; 3:14,15,26 4:1,2,10,31 5:29,30 13:29,30,37 17:18,30,31 26:22,23
A. Essential to the doctrine of Justification. (Rom. 4:3,22,24,25)
B. Essential to the doctrine of Intercession. (Heb.7:23,25)
C. Essential to the doctrine of the 2nd Coming. (Jn.14:3)
D. Essential to the doctrine of the Millenium. (Acts 2:30)
E. Essential to the doctrine of Glorification. (! Cor. 15:7)
A. Rom 6:4,5 “ like as Christ was raised up from the dead “
B. Col. 2:12,13 “buried with Him in baptism, wherein ye are also risen with Him through faith”

Friday, April 10, 2009


LUKE 23:32-46
Though there are many means by which one might experience death, there are only two possible conditions in which one might meet the hour of death. We see each of those two conditions in the text for today.
THE FIRST MAN DIED IN SIN: V39: And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. The thief, though in a perilous position himself, joined the other mockers railing and abusing Jesus verbally. His heart was not softened by the certainty of his impending death. He died in sin.
THE SECOND MAN DIED TO SIN: VV40-42: But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. Not long before this man, too, had hurled verbal venom at Jesus. But eternity dawned on him. Death's cold hand touched him. Judgment came to mind. And he repented. He died to sin.Paul reminds all who have been baptized into Christ that they have died to sin, Romans 6:1-4.
THE THIRD MAN DIED FOR SIN: V46: And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost. Jesus was not the victim of circumstances, a helpless martyr caught up in a plan gone awry! He was a willing participant and was in charge of His own destiny!

Thursday, April 9, 2009


PRO 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Never before in the history of our country have our kids been in more trouble than they are now. We have an alarming teen-age pregnancy rate; a high drop out rate from school; increased gang-activity; kids carrying & using weapons on a daily basis.
The Q: What went wrong? We have removed the Bible from our children's basic education. No education is complete without studying the Scriptures. Yet, this country has removed the Bible from the public schools. It is no longer taught; it is no longer believed; it is no longer legal.
How many of our problems in society can be traced back to the lack of Bible in education? Look at our youth today...their lives are not built on a solid foundation of the Scriptures, and we can clearly see the result: our entire society is affected by their actions: violence, ungodly behaviour.
We are seeing entire generations of young adults who were not raised on the Bible, and we are reaping the consequences as a country: moving farther & farther away from God...
How do we "Train up a child in the way he should go"? Train up = to train, with a purpose, systematically; To dedicate, through special instruction...
Does the Church actually "train up" our youth or merely entertain them today? Many youth programs are glorified baby-sitting services; some are based purely on having fun...what should be the happy medium between fun & learning? This command is an imperative in the Hebrew: which stresses it's importance: teaching our youth is extremely important, and is something that God expects us to do...Is the end result of our bible teaching designed to "dedicate" our youth to the Lord & His service? If a child is not taught the Bible in his youth, is it surprising that he joins a society that doesn't know God?
Is it possible to be a moral person without being a Christian? "I am moral, but not a Christian."
Isn't that a self-pronouncement? By what standard can one make such a judgment? There must be a standard! And this standard must be apart from the person...The statement: "I am moral" means nothing unless it can be compared to a standard...this is the problem standard.
Where does morality come from - and what is it? Morality is a code of conduct that comes from God.
One is moral, not because he follows this code, but only if he know and follows the One who gave the code.
The verse stresses the importance of Bible study & Bible teaching. Are you a student?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


ROMANS 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
INTRO: Faith is essential to all life. Without faith it is impossible to please God. The answer to the Christian’s problem in life is “FAITH.” When a person receives Christ as their personal Savior, God takes that person’s faith and counts it for righteousness. The whole life of the Christian is to be a life of faith, from beginning faith to ending faith, from faith to faith.
This text shows that faith is the source, the support and the success of life.
A. Only by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ can one attain eternal life.
1. It is to believe and live. (Romans 10:13)
2. Eternal life is possible only by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. (Eph. 2:8-9)
3. The gospel, “Good News” is summed up in believing in Christ. (1 Cor. 15:1-4)
B. Real life begins with faith in Christ. (John 3:36; John 4; 5:24)
FAITH IS THE SUPPORT OF LIFE “ Shall live by faith”
A. Faith in Christ allows His power to support our life. (1 John 5:1-5)
B. Faith is the force that supports life and sustains life unto the end.
1. Faith enriches our life.
a. Gives us hope (Rom. 5:2)
b. Gives us joy (Acts 16:34; 1 Peter 1:8)
c. Gives us peace (Rom. 15:13)
d. Gives us confidence (Isa. 28:16 cf 1 Pet. 2:6)
2. Faith enlarges our life. (Gal. 2:20)
3. Faith enables our life. (Rom. 4:12; 2 Cor. 5:7)
4. Faith increases our life. (Heb. 11:1-2)
FAITH IS THE SUCCESS OF LIFE “The Just shall live by faith”
A. Faith leads to the power that will appropriate the righteousness of Christ for the life
of the believer.
B. Faith is the force that leads to the righteousness of Christ. It allows the Christian to live a
righteous life.
C. Living a life of faith is the only way to succeed in the Christian life.
CON: Without faith it is impossible to please God. The Christian life should be summed up in “ PLEASING GOD.” (Hebrews 11:6)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Leave a Good Church for a Bad One

Heb 12:15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;

I know a pastor who changed the mid-week service from Wednesday to Thursday night in order to schedule some good men for our mid-week service that ordinarily would not be able to come and speak at his church. These meetings continued for the entire summer.

One of his good men decided that he would visit several of the like minded churches in the area for their regular Wednesday night service and observe how they conducted their meetings. In each of these churches he found former members of his church who had joined these other churches for one reason or another. He said without exception when the service was over he left saying to himself, “These people left our Church for this?”

That raises a good question. Why would a person leave a good church that is getting more done for the Lord than any other church in the area and join one that does not come near the church they leave?

There may be a number of reasons and space does not permit me to deal at length with them, but one reason seems to be more prevalent than all the others. I have noticed in my years of pastoring that people get into conflict with other people and never a doctrinal issue. Sometimes it is a problem between children, sometimes it is disagreement over music type, sometimes it is because of something said about or to a person that is eaken wrong or offensive. Feelings get hurt and barriers are built.

The incident becomes a “root of bitterness” or a “seed of discontent”. Because the wound or hurt is not dealt with scripturally and Spiritually it grows and spreads and then causes blindness to spiritually truth and becomes a barrier to the working of the Holy Spirit in the person’s life. When decisions are made in that frame of mind, very seldom does a person act in the leading of the Lord and according to His will. Of course the person and their families will loose God’s blessings and step outside the Will of God. Multitudes of God’s children are dormant and rusting in churches where they have fled to get away from someone or some situation rather than act as Christians and resolve the problems.

In all these situations the work of the Lord is hindered, the Lord is grieved and the devil rejoices. How sad!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Where is Zebedee?

Mat 4:21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them.

We wouldn’t know who Zebedee is or anything about him if it weren’t for his sons James Zebedee and John Zebedee and Mrs. Zebedee who pleaded for Jesus to allow her two boys to sit on the right and left side of His throne. James Zebedee became the pastor of the Church at Jerusalem and was the first martyr. John Zebedee was chosen to write 50 chapters of the Bible. These two fellows were insiders with Jesus. They were on the Mount of Transfiguration with Him, they were in the Garden of Gethsemane, they were at Calvary. John was at the grave of the Lord and I am sure they are both in Heaven with the Lord right now, but where was Zebedee? He was too busy mending his nets!

There is nothing wrong with mending nets. There is nothing wrong with owning a boat. There is nothing wrong with going fishing or a dozen other similar things, but these things kept Zebedee from meeting Jesus. Zebedee never got to see Jesus work miracles. He never got to hear Him preach. He was not there when Jesus hung on the cross. He never looked into the empty tomb. He missed all that because he was too busy mending his nets. Where is Zebedee. I am afraid he might be suffering in torment at this very moment because he was too occupied with his nets.

I hope my readers won’t let this happen to them!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Soul Winning

Prov. 11:30 “The fruit of the righteous is the tree of life and he that winneth Souls is wise”

1. There is no mention of the root, the trunk, the bark, the limb, the Branches, the leaves, the blossoms, the sap, the bees, or any of the other things vitally essential to getting fruit from this tree. The most important thing in this passage is the fruit. The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.

2. The pews, the songbooks, the choir, the music, the buses, the PA system, the Sunday School , the buildings, the radio ministry, the missionary program, the school, the church bulletin, and a dozen other things are only a means to an end.

In Psalms 126:6 We are after sheaves. (Harvest)
In Proverbs.11:30 We are after the fruit. (Harvest)
In Joel 3:13 The Harvest is ripe.
In Matt. 9:36 The Harvest is plenteous.
In Mark 4:26 The Harvest is Come.
In Luke 10:1 The Harvest is great.
In John 4:35 The Harvest is white.
We are not fishing for the fun but for the fish.

I. PROSPECTS ARE PLENTIFUL (The harvest is plenteous) People everywhere would like to be saved. We must find them.

II. MANY OF THESE ARE READY (The harvest is ripe) The Philippian Jailer asked, “What must I do to be saved.”

III. IT DOESN’T TAKE A PROFESSIONAL. (Psa.126:5) It doesn’t say “they that sow…who have a degree or have taken A Soulwinning course.”




Friday, April 3, 2009


1Tim 4:10-12 For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe. These things command and teach. Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
A defendant was on trial for murder. There was strong evidence indicating guilt, but there was no corpse. In the defense's closing statement the lawyer, knowing that his client would probably be convicted, resorted to a trick: "Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I have a surprise for you all," the lawyer said as he looked at his watch. "Within one minute, the person presumed dead in this case will walk into this courtroom."
He looked toward the courtroom door. The jurors, somewhat stunned, all looked on eagerly. A minute passed. Nothing happened.
Finally the lawyer said, "Actually, I made up the previous statement. But you all looked on with anticipation. I therefore put it to you that there is reasonable doubt in this case as to whether anyone was killed and insist that you return a verdict of not guilty."
The jury, clearly confused, retired to deliberate. A few minutes later, the jury returned and pronounced a verdict of guilty.
"But how?" inquired the lawyer. "You must have had some doubt; I saw all of you stare at the door."
The jury foreman replied: "Oh, we did look, but your client didn't."
Oops! It was evident from the way he acted that the defendant didn't really believe the victim was still alive.

Let me ask you a question: As the world looks at our lives, is it evident to them that we believe in THE LIVING GOD? Oh, I know we've made the case, we've argued the evidence, we've proclaimed the truth that "Our God, He is Alive!" But the world may be looking not so much at the evidence we present, as our demeanor, to see if it matches what we say we believe.

May it be evident to the people around us by the way we act that we serve THE LIVING God!

Thursday, April 2, 2009


Ps 107:8 Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! V.9 For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.

Intro: Dr. Bob Jones Sr. Said “ I would rather sit at the feet of a woman who lives in a cabin and who can scarcely write her name but who knows Jesus than to than to sit at the feet of the greatest scholar the world ever saw, if the scholar does not know the Lord.”

A. Zacchaeus received the Lord Joyfully. (Luke 19:6)
B. The Ethopian Eunuch went away joyfully. (Acts 8:39)
C. The Philippian jailer rejoiced with his house. (Acts 16:34)

A. The Person and work of Jesus Christ. (I Cor. 3:10,11)
B. Our Foundation has been tested and proven. ( Matt.4:1-11)
C. Our Foundation enables us to withstand the storms of life. (Mt.7:24)

A. Our testimony reveals the indwelling Christ. (Gal 2:20)
B. Our testimony is evidence of a spiritual relationship. (II Tim1:12)
C. Our testimony is to a life-changing gospel. (Rom. 1:16)

A. It will be incorruptible. ( I Pet. 1:4)
B. It will be give on the basis of the work done by the believer. (II Cor. 5:10)
C. It will be given by the Lord himself. (Rev. 22:12)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

What's Wrong With It

1Co 6:12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.
1Co 10:23 All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.

The difference between what some practice as Christianity and what the Bible teaches true Christianity is right at that point. Some look at life and say, "Everything is wrong unless you can prove from a verse of scripture that it is right." That is a negative approach to life; it clamps a prohibitive hand upon everything that is fun and says it is all either illegal, immoral or fattening.
But New Testament Christianity comes at it differently. It says everything is right: God made the earth and everything in it and everything is right except what the Word of God labels is wrong. That is an entirely different point of view, opening the whole world to exploration and discovery and enjoyment, except for a very limited part that scripture clearly labels wrong.

Eph 5:15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

Balancing truth is like walking along the top of a fence. When I was a boy I used to enjoy walking the fence in the horse lot around the barn. I could go all the way around the barn. I enjoyed doing it, but it was a very narrow path. And Jesus said that was what the Christian life would be like. He called it a "narrow way." The problem is to keep from falling off, and the interesting thing about that is you can fall off on either side. It does not make any difference---either side is equally dangerous, it is the same distance down.

Therefore, Christians ought to constantly remember that the pathway of liberty is always narrow. It is a wonderful path; it is a freeing and exhilarating walk, but it is not very wide, and you can easily fall off into one error or the other.