Friday, June 5, 2015

A Warrior of Faith - Ephesians 6:16


As each fiery dart, tipped with the flames of hellish hate, comes speeding to the soldier of the cross, deafened by the din and blinded by the smoke of battle, he must catch and quench it on the golden shield of faith, that it reach not his head or heart.

Sometimes a slander will be circulated, for which you have given no occasion; or a venomous speech or article will be hurled at you; or some horrible suggestion win be thrust between the joints of the armor; or some deadly reminder of the sins of the past, which you can never recall without burning remorse. At such times we are tempted to give back, to renounce our work, to withdraw from the battle. And those will certainly yield to the temptation, who are not inspired by the faith that can hand these things over to the compassionate and mighty Savior, who knows all, but loves better than He knows, and who interposes to cover our heads in the day of battle.

But faith like this is only possible to him whose hands are clean, and his heart pure; who is living in daily fellowship with Jesus, and whose soul is nurtured by daily feeding on the Word of God.    -F.B. Meyer

Saturday, March 16, 2013

CC Hatteras Island Leaders Conference

Ptom and ptom of CC Richmond with pastor Ivan who pastors in Okracole in North Carolina.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Administration vs "Ministration"

As looking at Romans 16....i'm really reminded of how people are the most important and still at times they feel the least they are to the body of Christ!   Paul's entire letter is written to the Roman gentile reader and sends a message to those reading of the blessing and usefulness of those in the body of Christ!

From Phoebe to Priscilla and Aquila to Amplias and others, they are well commended for their gifting and use in and for the body of Christ.  It's evident that those in the church at that time surely knew how to administer their gifts to others and use their gifts for ministering!  It's important I believe that we not get all caught up with the methods and systems of our churches...the administration over the "ministration" (if that's even a word), and continue to focus on how in the middle of administration...Jesus still ministered.

This then is not just a listing of people who all of a sudden love Jesus and minister to others...because they didn't begin that way.  Every person named in Chapter 16 of Romans is a person who was discipled and trained in the Gospel of Grace!  Without people discipling others...we will never encounter the Urbanus' or Apellas' or Rufus' of our own churches!  

We must take an interest in the people who come to our churches and really, really look at where the Lord wants them to be!  The Lord doesn't see us where we are so much as where we will be!

So let me encourage you with this...keep focused on the people and not the system or method...pray for your people by name and ask God to use YOU in making disciples of the men and women we love...because so many of our people get lost over the "mission" and need guidance.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Thoughts about Halloween...

I find during this time of year, I get asked a lot of questions about whether Halloween is "really" a demonic day and if it's so bad, then why do Christians participate in it?  This is a really good question that deserves some explanation and exhortation when God's children "dabble" in the things of the occult.

Remember, if whatever you do does not glorify God...then you and I are not to do it!

As an alternative to "All Hallows Eve", attend a local church that night and "shine the Light of Jesus" to a very dark world.  The darkness is only present when there is an absence of Light!  Be Light and Shine the Light of Christ that is in You!  

beBlessed and seek always to glorify God in all you do!

Pastor Tom

"The word “wicked” is translated from the Greek term poneros. This word means, vicious, evil, hurtful, calamitous, malicious, morally corrupt, and lewd. Poneros is connected to the word ponos which means “labor.” The idea of pŏnērŏs is laboring to do evil. We could say the wicked campaign for evil. We also get the English word pornography from this word. All the filth and falsehood permeating and pouring out into the world today can be traced to the work of the wicked one. He is campaigning for evil.

People are not only dabbling in sin, but living in it, enjoying it, promoting it, intoxicated with it. It’s all part of the sway of the devil. Like a tasty morsel temptingly placed in the center of a trap. Sinful practices promise pleasure. But any pleasure sin promises is temporary and leads to death (Heb. 11:25).

Halloween is a dangerous time of deception. Ghouls, goblins, ghosts, skeletons, black cats, witches, tricks and treats are some of the “fun” indulgences we are tempted to partake in. But remember, they all have dark origins. None are a product of God’s light. That should be enough to sway us away. But still some will give in to temptation. And when someone succumbs to indulge it subtly lowers the sensitivity to discerning darkness and light. It blurs truth from error.

It whispers assuringly, See, there’s nothing wrong with this. Over time what is viewed as slight deviations from the word of God start to add up. One day, SCLAP! The trap slams shut. You’re caught in the sway of the wicked one. That which is presented as harmless isn’t as harmless as it seems. That is the nature of deception. And that is the sway of the wicked one!"   
Taken  from  Pastor  John Brown of Calvary Central

Thursday, September 22, 2011

What's in a Name?

 Last night in my church, we began teaching in Judges 14 and the beginning of Samson' life of disobedience.  I don't want to focus here on his disobedience, but on his name.  The name Samson means "Sunny" or "Brightness."   This name given by the Lord to Manoah and his wife was while the unborn child was still in the womb of his mother, and was given to be a "hope" and "light" in a dark and hopeless time.  You see, the Isrealites had been in captivity by the Philistines, and their captivity was to be the longest for them of 40 years!   Be that as it may...let's get back to the "name" given by the Lord to Samson. 

I look at his name and the characteristic he was to fulfill by and in that name..."Brightness....Sunny" that brings light to that brings hope to hopelessness.  We all know what "light" is...the absence of in that; Samson was separated for a purpose to be that "light" and that "Brightness" to a very dark place.  So what's in a name?  Alot!  

What about your name?  Not the name your parents gave you..but the Name you have in Jesus.  The name you/we consider ourselves to be...a Christian.  In that name is assembled the most of accountability and responsibility for anyone who says they are a Christian.  In this name is the characteristic of being "Christ-like" in all we do and who we are!  Here's some of the words (characteristics) of the name Christian: Holy, Righteous, Good, Faithful, True, Just, Peaceable, Spotless, innocent, Harmless, Resisting Temptation, Obedient to the Father, Zealous, Meek, Lowly in Heart, Merciful, Patient, Long-Suffering, Compassionate, Giving, Loving, Self-Denying, Humble, Submitted, Forgiving, Conformed, Transformed...and there's more!

The issue is that when you and I receive the "Name" of Christian and place it upon ourselves as an "ID" to the World, then we are to also take on the characteristics associated with it.  This is why I say it's a "way of life" that is to be demonstrated in you and thru you...and pouring out of you and into the lives of those around you!

It's important to know that if you have accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and Messiah, and you have accepted the name Christian to be your identification "from" the World (like Samson), then you/we/I must begin to demonstrate the characteristics of that name!  We are not to say we are Christians and then "act" and "do" as the World does!  It's an offense to the One who saved you!  

What's in a name??  Ask yourself this question about your own life. 
If you call yourself a Christian...are you living it out in your life?  Are you showing others you are a Christ-Follower not just in name only?  Are you willing to "deny self" and "pick up your cross" and "follow Jesus" not just in name...but in life? 

What's in a name?  Alot!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Choices, Choices, Choices

We (as a church) are currently studying through the Book of Judges.  And since beginning this book, it really speaks to me about the issue of "choice."   The choice to follow God and the choice not to follow God.  I don't mean as in believing in God or Salvation...but in that Sanctification process.  It's during this time where we as Children of God are tested by the Lord in various ways.  It really struck me as the Lord, due to the willful disobedient choices of the Children of Israel, actually left the Canaanites in the land (Judges 2:20-3:1) to "test" them.  This is a very scary thing to think about I think.  Because this means that when the Lord has given us all ample opportunity to repent, and we don't, well; He'll leave those "Canaanites" in our land!

The testing comes by the Lord due to our hardened hearts and lack of desire to be obedient to His will for our lives.  So, He'll leave them in our land.  In a way I believe to "prove" our obedience thru the testing.  To prove our love for Him thru the testing. 

I believe that when choices come our way, we need to choose the "narrow and difficult" path.  It may the the narrow and difficult path, but it's the "better" path to be on!

It's the path that leads us and takes us along His will for our lives. 

So, as choices come your way...choose the better path...His path,...His road

Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday - A Time of Remembrance

Good Friday (22 April 2011)

In the early hours before sunup, Jesus is betrayed by the “Judas Kiss” and arrested. At sunrise, he is disowned by Peter. When brought before Caiaphas, the Jewish High Priest, and his Council, he is condemned. He says that he will rise from death after three days.

They hand him over to the Roman authority, Pontius Pilate, who sends him to Herod (Antipas, the son of Herod the Great). Then Pilate asks the crowd who he is to pardon: a murderer, or Jesus? The crowd betrays Jesus and he is sentenced to death.

Jesus is brought to Calvary, where on the “third hour” (9 am) he is crucified. He is mocked as he hangs between the Bad Thief and the Good Thief, whom he blesses. On the “sixth hour” (noon), darkness covers the land. Jesus cries out “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”

After drinking sour wine, he commits his spirit to his Father and dies. Matthew (27:51-52) reports an earthquake that destroys the Temple. Many understand now that Jesus was the Son of God. His body is taken down and anointed. He is buried in a cave. This is the first day of death.