Posts by Robert


Rejoicing, While Suffering For Jesus Christ! “So they went on their way from the presence of the Council, rejoicing that they had been considered worthy to suffer shame for His name.”  Acts 5:41 Many times preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ will result in suffering and that suffering will occur in various ways.  In fact, all Christians ought to expect this type of suffering (2 Tim. 3:12, 1 Pet. 4:12-19).  For powerful examples of suffering, I refer to the book of Acts.  Which brings a sense of awe of the Apostle’s courageousness, tenaciousness, and fortitude.  They endured horrendous persecution for sake of the Gospel, yet continued to press on.  Obeying God, regardless of the numerous perilous situations they encountered at the hands of the Jewish leaders or others.  Suffering came in many forms; they were maligned, falsely accused, threatened, arrested, severely beaten, imprisoned, etc (Acts 4:3, 17-8, 5:18, 40, 16:22-23). Peter and John were illegally jailed for preaching Jesus’ resurrection from the dead and were ordered by the Jewish leaders to refrain from preaching about Jesus Christ.  Realizing to whom Peter and John ultimately held allegiance to, they disregarded the command and continued to proclaim Jesus.  When arrested a second, they were brought to testify before the ruling body of the temple, the Sanhedrin; where they declared; “…We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).  They knew disobedience to those men would result in severe punishments, but faithfully believed obedience to God transcended obedience to men.  So as a result their choice for God, they suffered tremendous persecution   Amazingly, all their suffering was because of righteousness! Moreover, Peter asseverates that faithful believers must not only expect to suffer for Christ’s sake, but to also “rejoice” in that suffering (1 Pet. 2:21, 4:13, Acts 5:41).  An example of this can be found in the fifth chapter of Acts; “…they flogged them (the Apostles) and ordered them to speak no more in the name of Jesus, and then released them.  So they went on their way from the presence of the Council, rejoicing that they had been considered worthy to suffer shame for His name.  And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they kept right on teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ” (Acts 5:40-42-emphasis added).  Also, when Paul and Silas were severely beaten with rods and imprisoned for proclaiming Christ, they sang hymns of praise to God! (Acts 16:22-25)   Can you imagine enduring a painful, blood-spattering beating for preaching that salvation is only through Jesus Christ?  But, what is even more mind-boggling, is rejoicing afterwards!  This is encouraging to read, knowing there are many in...

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Paul, Stoned! But encouraged the brethren! “…they stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing him to be dead.” Acts 14:19b Paul, having just healed a lame man, so captivated the people of Lystra, that they extolled him and Barnabas as incarnate gods (Acts 14:8-11). But, envious and disbelieving Jews came from Iconium and Antioch and persuaded the multitude to rebel against them. Erroneously convinced, they stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing him to be dead (Acts 14:19). But, miraculously, he arose that same day and entered into the city with his other disciples. The very next day, he and Barnabas traveled approximately fifty miles to the city of Derbe v. 20. This amazing feat was accomplished because the Lord performed a supernatural divine healing.  For Paul was violently and brutally “stoned” and most likely a bloody pulp. And obviously death by stoning was extremely harsh, agonizing way to be murdered, let alone surviving such an ordeal.  But, what is even more amazing then Paul’s miraculous survival, is the fact that he devotedly proclaimed the Gospel immediately upon arriving in Derbe and made many disciples there. From Derbe, they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch; the very cities responsible for nearly killing Paul! v. 21. One could appropriately speculate, the Jews unsuccessful at murdering Paul the first time, were exceedingly furious and desirous for the opportunity of having a second chance at murdering him. So, why did Paul return to these hostile and pernicious venues? Most believers, if not all, would have probably fled fast and far from such perilous environments, opting not to go near them ever again. But Paul didn’t, he courageously chose to venture back, dangerously placing his life at risk. Perhaps to encourage the brethren in each city, who might have witnessed or heard of the pandemonium which culminated in Paul’s stoning.  Also Paul’s devotion and desire to proclaim the Gospel.  Paul abided in the faith, declared; “Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.” v. 22b. We can glean from these passages that Paul’s courageous return, demonstrated an unwavering trust in God and belief in God’s power to perform miracles. Paul was a literal paradigm of encouragement for those disciples to witness, and to exude that same trust in God themselves. Furthermore, his return would have served to encourage the brethren, who became discouraged from Paul’s violent rejection; contemplating, in that situation, darkness overcame light.  So, in essence, Paul demonstrated the fortitude and unrelenting amelioration of the church (Matt. 11:12); that it cannot not be thwarted by evil unbelief! Even under severe persecution, the Lord Jesus Christ earnestly declared, evil shall not...

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  Be “Salt” And “Light” amidst persecution!    “Rejoice, and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great…” Matt. 5:12a               The glorious promises of God that come through belief in Jesus Christ, may indeed be costly for the children of God; a cost that could entail severe persecution.  The Apostle Paul wrote that persecution of Christians is inevitable (2 Tim. 3:12) and can manifest itself in various forms. Such as: mockery, ridicule, slander, false accusations, ostracization from family or friends; reviling, scorn, resentment, hatred.  Being fined, imprisoned, abused, castigated, tortured, and even martyrdom.  No matter what the cost, we should be willing to pay the price.  In order to pay that hefty price, we must learn to cultivate: love, patience, long-suffering, forgiveness, diligence, tenacity, fortitude; or in other words, a Christ-like heart and mind.  These disciplines do not result from a superficial understanding of God’s word and an attitude of indifference toward holiness and obedience.   In most of today’s American churches, the fabricated atmosphere encourages congregants to relax and enjoy comfort while being “entertained”.  During worship services, if I may call it that, all solemnity and fear of God is eviscerated and superficiality is promoted as the norm.  Congregants are accustomed to undergoing insignificant amounts of persecution, if any at all, in their lives and therefore are incapable of comprehending the concept of true persecution.  That is why it is essential to saturate one’s mind with Scripture and to spend ample time studying it (Rom. 12:2).  I cannot emphasize enough, the importance of being in constant commune with God!   Additionally, one must always keep in mind Jesus’ instruction in the Sermon on the Mount: “Blessed are you when men cast insults at you, and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely, on account of Me.  “Rejoice, and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.  “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how will it be made salty again? It is good for nothing anymore, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men.   “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden…”Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”  (Matt. 5:11-16).    Therefore, when persecution arises we must not cower or become timid recluses, but rather be strong and bold witnesses of Jesus Christ (2 Tim. 1:7).  This, mind you, gives evidence of a mature Christian firmly rooted...

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The Peril of Omission!

The Peril of Omission!


Posted By on Feb 1, 2015

The Peril of Omission!  During my recent reading of Proverbs 6:16-19; the seven sins that are abominable to God, the sins which stood out from the rest of the text were the sins of “lying” and “false witnessing” (vv. 17,19). As I contemplated heavily on these particular sins, I then realized just how easily they flow out of our mouths.  Lies or to proclaim false witness is when a person openly declares a falsehood or presents false testimony.  But, as I ruminated on these iniquities, what struck me as equally evil, is the “omission” of a truth, particularly biblical truth and especially when proclaiming the Gospel. “Omission” is when a person deliberately and purposely conceals the whole truth and presents only part of it.  An unidentified Puritan wrote: “You can recognize a false teacher, not by what they say; but rather, what they don’t say”. And Pastor John MacArthur stated: “A half-truth presented as a whole-truth, is not a truth at all; it’s a lie”. In other words, someone who willfully withholds proclaiming God’s full truth; this is omission and a form of lying.   Many of today’s evangelical preacher’s teach solely on God’s loving attributes, while intentionally omitting other attributes of God such as; wrath, justice, holiness, especially when they present the Gospel.  Some preachers commit this sin because they fear men, desiring approval rather than fearing God- enough.  Therefore, they craft powerless, ineffectual, and crippled sermons, designed to “tickle” the ears of the hearer, condemning them to hell.  In other words, they preach what their congregations desire to hear, rather than what they need to hear (1Tim. 4:16).  In fact, Scripture prophesies that people will have an ever-increasing penchant for a water-downed message, and will ardently seek molly-coddling preaching and surround themselves with compromising preachers. (2 Timothy 4:3-4).   Furthermore, some teachers omit saying the word “Hell” in a sermon while only declaring “Heaven”. Please don’t misunderstand me, preaching about God’s love and the glories of heaven are definitely important aspects of total Gospel message. But, equally imperative is teaching people about being born into sin, God’s just wrath against sin, His divine justice, yet providing mercy and grace by sending His Son, our Savior Jesus Christ to save those who are called and will receive eternal life. Others who have not heard the full Gospel will die with un-forgiven sins, condemned to hell.  Incidentally, the word “Gospel” means “good news”.  I ask; if pastors preach merely God’s love and the glories of heaven, then why would anyone need “good news” presented to them? Might people deem Jesus’ death on the cross insignificant? Might they ignorantly inquire...

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Love, A More Excellent Way!

Love, A More Excellent Way!


Posted By on Jan 20, 2015

Love, A More Excellent Way! Interestingly, the Apostle Paul concludes chapter twelve of his first letter to the Corinthians, by exhorting them to desire earnestly “the greater gifts” and how he will show them a more “excellent way.” (1 Cor. 12:31).   Paul, then proceeds into what is perhaps the most definitive chapter on “love” in the entire Bible; it is definitely the most known by Christians.   He urges the Corinthians earnestly to pursue love.  Interestingly, love is not even a spiritual gift, but rather a “fruit” of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22).  In John MacArthur’s Commentary on 1 Cor. 13 he states: “The truly spiritual life is the only life in which the gifts of the Spirit operate.  The health of spiritual living is not reflected in spiritual gifts but in spiritual fruit, the first and chief of which is love. (Gal. 5:22).  Without the fruit of the Spirit the gifts of the Spirit cannot operate except in the flesh, in which they become counterfeit and counterproductive.  Through the fruit of the Spirit God gives the motivation and power to minister the gifts of the Spirit…Walking by the Spirit is Paul’s way of defining day-to-day obedience to the Word of God and submission to the Lord. (Col. 3:16).” To possess love is tantamount to faith in Jesus Christ; examples of this are taught with inculcation throughout the New Testament.  Peter exhorts Christians to love one another fervently and states how “agape” love (sacrificial; selfless) covers a multitude of sins.  Only two verses prior, he wrote instructing believers to use their spiritual gifts for the edification of one another.  (1 Pet. 4:8-10).  But perhaps the greatest exhibition of love recorded in Scripture, occurred in the Upper Room, where Jesus washed His disciples’ feet on the eve of His crucifixion.  (John 13:3-12).  Here was God, Creator of the universe; condescending to the level of an insignificant galley slave and washing the feet of sinful men.  Who, He omnisciently knew, very shortly, would all abandon Him at the time when His arrest and crucifixion had arrived!   Incidentally, Jesus even washed Judas Iscariot’s feet, the disciple who would betray Him.  This was the ultimate act of “loving your enemies”, as He had commanded during the Sermon on the Mount (Matt. 5:44).  When Jesus had finished washing their feet, He commanded His disciples: “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35).   This was a new commandment Jesus had given...

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We Must Speak God’s Word’s!

We Must Speak God’s Word’s!


Posted By on Jan 1, 2015

  We Must Speak God’s Words! Evangelism must contain the proclamation of the Gospel; God commands it!   “…how shall they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher”? Rom. 10:14    A sign posted outside of a Christian church read; “You can preach a better sermon with your actions, rather than your words.”   Another sign of a local church ominously read; “Preach the Gospel by how you live, and if necessary, use words.”  In other words, both signs insinuated that you can have a successful Gospel outreach and “attract” those to Christianity, by just living a godly life without proclaiming the Gospel.   Although, there is truth to that statement, we ought to live a sanctified life, always demonstrating the Gospel and Christ-likeness.  But, it is perilous to eliminate the essential vehicle the Holy Spirit employs to grant souls unto salvation.  In fact, the use of words is God’s chosen method to convey His truth, the Gospel message; a message vitally necessary for everyone to hear.  Scripture commands us to proclaim God’s truth in many verses and obviously this command includes the use of words (Matt. 28:19-20, Luke 24:47, John 20:21, Acts 1:8, 5:20, 10:33, 42, Rom. 10:14-15); as well as in numerous other places in the Bible.  Both, in the Old Testament and the New Testament God’s servants, prophets, or Apostles, were commanded to declare His unadulterated truth especially to recalcitrant and  stony-heart people.    The Old Testament prophets were commanded by God to proclaim words of repentance, judgment, wrath, or destruction to His people.  God did not simply “suggest” to His servants, that they live in a godly way, with the hopes of others responding positively to their examples.  But rather, He commanded them to proclaim with words exactly what He desired them to “speak”.  For example, the prophet Isaiah was commanded to preach a message of imminent destruction and captivity to the city of Judah.  Furthermore, God declared to Isaiah that nobody would listen to his warnings.  When Isaiah beseeches God how long he was to proclaim that impending judgment on Judah, God replied,  “…Until cities are devastated and without inhabitant, Houses are without people, And the land is utterly desolate.” (Isa. 6:10).  That was an extremely difficult command for Isaiah to obey.  Just think, if you were commanded by God to proclaim ineluctable judgment on a very hostile nation, and had no good news to tell them; no light at the end of the tunnel.   Yet Isaiah unwavering obeyed God! Jeremiah faced similar circumstances, but even harsher.  Throughout the book of Jeremiah, the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah and commanded that...

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Witnessing A Missionary’s Heart!

Witnessing A Missionary’s Heart!


Posted By on Dec 8, 2014

Witnessing A Missionary’s Heart! “…How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings of good things!” Isa. 52:7, Rom. 10:15   We crossed the border and entered Gallup, New Mexico at 3:30 pm, approximately thirty-five miles from our destination, the Zuni Indian Reservation. Fatigued and famished from the long commute, our missionary suggested that we dine and proceed to sleep; for we needed to wake very early the next morning.  Our spiritual brother, close friend, professional linguist, and Zuni missionary, Curtis D. Cook, had a full itinerary planned for us to accomplish the very next day. Once in our hotel room, we prayed for Curtis and the Zuni people; asking for the Lord’s blessing upon this very brief, yet extremely important missionary trip.  Curtis was eager to distribute his recently completed and self-published; “A Practical Zuni Dictionary.”  For us, it was indeed a privilege and honor just to hold his “landmark” Zuni dictionary in our hands, a work designed to accompany the Zuni “Gospel of John”, which he began to disseminate on a previous trip.  Ingeniously, Curtis intends for the dictionary to serve as adjunct to John’s Gospel, by further aiding the Zuni reader to understand many of the terms that occur in the Gospel.  We observed Curtis’ masterful work contained many years of effort, diligence, and sacrificial love to produce. In essence, Curtis selflessly utilized his God-given gift of language translation by melding it with a passion for the Zuni people’s salvation. Curtis Cook is a seventy-six year old Christian man who resided among the Zuni people for many years and has continuously ministered to the Zuni people for over fifty years.   On January 1, 1964, at a tender age of twenty-six, he moved to the Zuni reservation.  Once arriving, he immediately, with zeal began learning the Zuni language.  Remarkably, by 1967, a mere three years later, he completed and distributed a translation of the Gospel of Mark.  It is evident that God called and gifted Curtis at an early age to accomplish such significant work for the advancement of His kingdom.  It is also apparent that God has great accomplishments in store for him as He continues to open doors for his Zuni ministry to continue.  We have encouraged Curtis that, because of his unique ability, we believe God has entrusted him with five talents as in Matt. 25:15. As an example to all of us, Curtis rose to God’s high calling, acted as a responsible steward zealously performing tasks required of him.  It is evident to all who have witnessed his work that Curtis has a God-given deep compassion and love for the Zuni...

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There seems to be an obvious aversion to preaching and teaching the “Fear of God”, for fear of scaring away potential Christian prospects. But a healthy fear of God is an intrinsic characteristic that all Christians possess upon conversion. Not only is such a characteristic instilled upon a believer at reception of the Holy Spirit, but God repetitively commands the believer to “Fear Him”. For example; “And to man He said, ‘Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, And to depart from evil is understanding.’ ” (Job 28:28); “The LORD of hosts, Him you shall hallow; Let Him be your fear, And let Him be your dread.” (Isaiah. 8:13); “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:28). There are myriads of verses in the Bible, but for the sake of brevity, I’ve only referenced a few. However, I encourage you to do a Bible study on the word “fear”, and you will be amazed how often it is in Holy Scripture.   Therefore having a fear of God is germane and tantamount to living the Christian life (Ps. 25:14, Acts 9:31). Embracing God’s omniscience, omnipotence, and at times, His unpredictable chastisement should not only invoke terror within the soul of the believer, but captivate awe as well. This unique inimitability of God is a phenomenon which seems oxymoronic and paradoxical, yet is magnetic. Take careful note when you read through the book of Acts, and you will recognize how often great fear besieged the multitudes. Yet, amazingly that fear led to countless people joining the church; fear was a catalyst not a deterrent!   For church (Acts 5:11), yet three verses later many men and women joined the church, even though God’s judgment upon Ananias and Sapphira for example, after God struck down dead Ananias and Sapphira immediately after they had been caught lying to the Holy Spirit. Great fear gripped the whole ira was swift and severe. That extreme fear sparked multitudes to join the church! (Acts 5:14)   Another example was a Jewish exorcist priest named Sceva who, with his seven sons attempted to exorcise an evil spirit from a man in the name of Jesus, the same Jesus that was preached by the Apostles. Agitated, the evil spirit from within the man exclaimed; “…I recognize Jesus, and I know about Paul, but who are you?” (Acts 19:15). Then attacked Sceva and his sons, overpowering and injuring them; they fled battered and naked. But you’ll notice, even though the instance became known to both Jews and Greeks...

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Dear Friends of the New Creation in Christ! The apostle Paul was still a man after he was converted to Jesus Christ. He was still subject to the same kinds of fears, anxieties, frustrations, temptations, failures, and doubts that all men experience. But he was a “new creation”. What does this mean? In simple terms it means that when someone is born from above there is a spiritual change that affects every part of his/her being. There is a change in how we think, and how we feel, and how we know. The change was so dramatic for the apostle Paul that he could say that it was no longer he who lived (Galatians 2:20). His view of himself, Jesus Christ, the world around him, and the world within him was forever transformed. All who are in Christ have been altered from within and no longer view the world with the same eyes as before. There is a real re-ordering of understanding and conforming actions that take place in all who are born from above. There is a marked re-orientation and a progressive growth in spiritual maturity that is part and parcel of everyone’s salvation experience. The pace of maturity, expertise in navigating life in Christ, and the swiftness of bringing every thought obedient to Christ vary in each individual. But one thing that all Christians have in common is a changed life. Therefore, if anyone be in Christ, he is a new creation; the old is gone the new has come (2Corinthians 5:17). The obvious question that arises in light of the above is, “how does one get in Christ?” It is surely by God’s doing that we are in Christ. But by what means? The means from heaven is grace. The means from earth is faith alone. We are seated in the heavenly realms in Christ by grace through faith alone. To be in Christ is eternal life. To get in Christ is by the grace of God. The response to efficacious grace is faith alone. Hence even our faith is a gift of God. Faith alone in Christ alone puts us in Christ. In Christ we live, we move, and we have our being (Acts 17:28)! With this said it becomes apparent that any kind of gospel that suggests a different means to be in Christ, or a different outcome in the life of anyone who claims to be in Christ, is illegitimate. This month I am on my way to Austin, Texas to do two more videos. One will be on those who deny that good deeds flow from true faith. The other two videos...

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It is a church leader’s obligation and responsibility to accurately identify the context of a passage, properly exegete it, and then convey it to his congregation. Also, they must disregard the many requests and temptation to preach ear-tickling sermons catering to felt needs or emotions. (2 Tim. 4:2-5).   Furthermore, they must refrain from caving-in to the ever-increasing pressure applied by an amoral government and culture; this could prove to be most difficult.  Our government, and sadly now our society is focused on squelching true churches from preaching the whole counsel of God, thus keeping all people ignorant. The implications are devastating to Christ’s church which is already practicing flagrant sin.  In fact, liberal groups who hate God’s commands, strive to legalize sin, empowering them to apply serious repercussions to orthodox churches.  Recognizing our modern-day culture helps us to realize that it is not only our church leaders responsibility to teach ALL of God’s Word soundly, and it is also every Christians’ duty to study and spread the Gospel as well; it is biblically mandated.   By contrast, preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ is not similar to political campaigns.  For instance, in politics, incumbents strategize to gain voter popularity. In fact, everything politicians do or say is predicated upon catering to the majority of voter’s desires and then promising to fulfill those desires.  They do this in order to gain support and ultimately votes. Unfortunately, this usually encompasses mitigating or eradicating truth, (humanly speaking) and promising whatever is necessary to lure voters. In essence, it’s all about popularity, with no intention to fulfill those promises.  Aren’t we blessed to know the Gospel of Jesus Christ does not work this way?! All of God’s promises which are written in the Bible have been fulfilled or will be; one-hundred percent of the time!  So, in reality, the Word of God is diametrically opposed to all political strategies. Thus, all ordained and faithful men of God, considers not the desires of the people, remaining solely focused on glorifying Jesus Christ, while reaching the lost and encouraging saints to live holier lives.   Unfortunately, many church leaders are making theological errors, by incorporating philosophically based worldly traditions and flesh-pleasing events, meanwhile treating their congregants similar to a politicians voter. They attempt to appease their congregation, while appealing to non-believers, and to do so, they mitigate the perspicuity of Scripture and water down the Gospel message.  If  pastors held strictly to following biblical guidelines, people’s fleshly desires would be of no relevance, while proclaiming the Truth. The Bible contains the perfect anthropological diagnosis and prognosis of man’s natural state. Therefore, we must speak God’s...

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