Month: March 2018

The Devil Deceives

The Devil Deceives

The devil deceives by Michael Robinson
March 22, 2018

The devil uses the same tricks over and over. He really has nothing new. But the problem is people keep falling for it over and over. The devil wants us to embrace sin and reject righteousness. He sells us the theory that sin is good and God is trying to keep us from this “goodness”. The devil reframes the issues so it appeals to our rebellious flesh. Look at what he did to Eve.

First the devil gets us to question God’s word. He wants us to doubt the truthfulness of God, that way we have valid reason to reject the Word of God.

Genesis 3:1-5 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

Second the devil wants you to believe the consequences of rejecting God’s Word are not real or true.

2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” 4 “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman.

Third the devil tells you the truth but lies about results. If you do the thing the devil wants you will get something “good”. It is not really good, but he frames in a way that sound enticing and pleasing to you.

5 “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

In our culture and churches today we are falling for the devil’s lies and half-truths all over again.
1. Abortion is a choice – “It’s woman’s body”. Translation = Murder is good, God says no. Devil says yes.
2. Divorce is ok – “God wants me to be happy”. Translation = Divorce is ok if you are not happy. God says no. Devil says yes.
3. Breaking the rules is cool – “My parents are old fashioned, they just don’t understand”. Translation = You can dishonor/disobey your parents. God says no. Devil says yes.
4. It is just an alternative lifestyle – “I was born this way (gay), God made me this way.” Translation = Homosexuality is normal and godly. God say no. Devil says yes.
5. It is about equality – “Gay people should be able to marry just like non-Gay people.” Translation = Marriage (One Man and One Woman) was not established by God. God says yes it was. Devil says no it wasn’t.
6. There are more than two genders – “We want to give our child the freedom to choose their gender without the constraints of societal influence.” Translation = God did not just make two genders (male and female). God says yes I only made two genders. Devils says no there are many genders.
7. The Bible was written by men – “The Bible is not relevant today, it does not take into account the changes in cultures.” Translation = God’s Word cannot be trusted. God says yes it can be trusted. The devil says no it can not be trusted.
8. You need to experiment – “I need to have sex before marriage, so I have experience and find someone sexually compatible.” Translation = Sex before marriage is necessary for a successful marriage. God says no. Devil says yes.

Who are you listening too?

The devil appeals to our rebellious nature and we make excuses for our behavior so we can enjoy the fruit of sin. But we will pay for our rebellion if we continue in it. God wants to save us from ourselves but we have to be willing to trust and obey Him and His Word.

Recap: the devil uses three tricks to deceive you.
A. Question God’s Word (do not trust it)
B. God lied to you about the consequences of sin.
C. If you satisfy your pleasures you will be rewarded with something awesome.

God loves you and only wants the best for you. Do not listen to the devil listen to God.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
John 3:16-21 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.

The Middle Road

The Middle Road

The Middle Road by Michael Robinson
March 20, 2018

Are we disciples of Jesus or just really enthused fans? Jesus told the disciples to go and make disciples. What does that look like? There is a teacher and a student. The student submits and learns from the teacher. It is not about a sermon on Sunday, it is about a training program teaching followers of Christ how to be followers of Christ. How can you know how to follow Jesus without being trained?

We believe we can read a devotional, say a morning prayer and attend occasional Sunday services. But God is looking for all of us, not just the occasional interaction.

Are we trying to live our Christianity going down the middle road? Not really committed to following Jesus all the way, just kinda following when we feel like it. Using the grace of God as an license to disrespect Him. Another word for the middle road many people live on is really just another way of saying lukewarm.

Jesus says: “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it…”I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.”

Do you want to be a disciple of Jesus? Jesus says you must be one to be part of His kingdom. How can you know you are a follower of Christ, if you are not being discipled by the leaders He has placed over you? Do you know better than Jesus?

Let us repent and do what Jesus said do? The Middle road is another word for the Wide Road and it does not lead to anywhere good.

Sin is Sin

Sin is Sin

Sin is Sin, No Matter Where it Lives
by Michael Robinson
March 19, 2018

Matthew 22:36-40 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Do you love God with everything or do you keep something for yourself? Many people who call themselves Christians believe that as long as they are not physically committing sin they are ok with God. Is that what Jesus teaches? God is not looking for people who live SELF RIGHTEOUS. He is looking for people who are RIGHTEOUS according to His guidelines.

Matthew 23:27-28 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you APPEAR to people as RIGHTEOUS but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.

Jesus is looking for disciples who worship Him with all of their heart, mind, soul, and body. We can not fool God and we should not try to fool ourselves. God says we are to examine ourselves to see if we are really followers of Christ. Many of us do righteous looking works on the outside, but inside we are sinning against God.

Philippians 3:8-9 I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith.

So what does Jesus teach about sin? Matthew 5:21-32 “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder,…But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift. “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman (or a man) lustfully has already committed adultery with her (him) in their heart. “It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife (husband), except for sexual immorality, makes her (him) the victim of adultery, and anyone who marries a divorced woman (man) commits adultery.

Are you an unmarried person having sexual thoughts about a man or woman? Are you carrying a grudge in your heart toward a brother or sister, while acting on the outside like everything is alright? Are you sexually lusting after someone even though you are married?

This is sin to God too and we must repent and stop doing it. Some of us think that our thought life is just a fantasy and God does not care. But we are judged for what we think and what we do. Jesus is not letting us get away with a sinful mind and heart just because we do not physically sin.

Jesus’ message is repentance of the heart and that repentance should materialize in our minds, souls, and bodies. Anything less is living a life of a Pharisee. Do you want to be a Pharisee? This is what Jesus says about the Pharisees: “do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach…These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” Is your heart far from Jesus?

2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test?

Matthew 7:21-23 True and False Disciples: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

God loves us, but His love will not cover up our unwillingness to obey Him. Only true repentance is acceptable to Him.

Just because you are not fornicating with your body, does not excuse fornicating with your heart. That applies to the spiritual and carnal.

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