Why is our nation in such an uproar over Christianity? (Daniel7)- Kay Arthur

PRECEPTS FOR LIFE

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Precept Ministries International

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The following is an actual transcript of the PRECEPTS FOR LIFE Broadcast. For the purpose of filling transcript requests quickly, they have received only light editing. If you have questions concerning the material covered in this broadcast, Kay has published a number of books explaining the Scripture in depth. These books may be ordered by contacting the telephone number or address printed above.

 

          

OPEN 

Why is our nation in such an uproar over Christianity? Why are they so adamantly, adamantly opposed to anything that is Christian? Why do they forbid us to have the Ten Commandments in courts of law? Why do they forbid crèches, ah, manger scenes in public places? Why are the nations in an uproar? We’ll talk about it today. 

 

PART ONE

I left you hanging in that last program, didn’t I? And I want us to go immediately to Daniel, chapter 2, because what I want us to do is to go back and understand and get all the details of this dream that Nebuchadnezzar dreamed, because it has to do with the end of the days. It has to do with time that is yet to come. You say, well how do you know that? Well, has the God of heaven set up a kingdom and has He removed every other kingdom on the face of this earth? No He hasn’t. And that’s what that dream says will happen. So because that hasn’t literally happened then we know that it either ain’t going to happen or it’s future.

And because it’s in God’s Word, I can tell you this: it is going to happen it, believe it or not. You say I don’t believe it and I don’t see how it can come to pass. Whether you think it’s going to happen or not, whether you believe it or not, it is going to happen because it’s the Word of God, because so many prophesies, 333 prophesies about the first coming of Jesus Christ came to pass. I mean, in detail, where He would be born, when He would be born, and Daniel has something to say about His coming. And we’re going to look at it. But you and I need to understand these details. This is so that we are not tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine.

So let’s go to the book of Daniel. And let’s go to Daniel, chapter 2. Now we’re looking at the interpretation of this dream that Nebuchadnezzar had of a huge statue that stood before him with a head of gold, a chest of silver. That’s right: a belly and thighs of, bronze, right, and legs of iron and feet of iron and clay. All right and it talks about the toes on the feet. How many toes are on feet, normally? It’s five on each foot, so there’s ten toes. So we saw this.

All right, now this is what I want you to do if you haven’t done it already: In your study guide you have, you’ve either downloaded that study guide or you’ve picked up the phone. You’ve called our 800-number and you’ve gotten it. You have a picture of that statue. All right and out to the right hand side as you look at it, there’s a place for you to write what you learn about the statue.

All right, so you have learned that the head of gold is Nebuchadnezzar who is the king of Babylon. So you want to put Babylon there. So the head of gold is king Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. All right, does it tell you what the chest of silver is? No. All it tells you is that this chest of silver is inferior to the gold. All right and that’s all it tells you. Now when you look at that chest, you’ve got two arms, you know, attached to the chest. That’s where our two arms are attached. All right, then you come down to the belly. So below the belt, down to the thighs you have bronze.

Now, let’s see what he says about this because I want you to do it on your chart. And this is important for you to do it, not just listen, because the doing of it is part of the process of learning. The minute that you act on something, the minute that you say something, do something, write something, it helps you retain it. Just hearing normally, apart from the work of the Holy Spirit, when we hear something we lose 90% of what we simply hear. But the minute we see it, the minute that we interact with it in some way, draw it, write it or whatever, then our retention goes up tremendously.

All right, so this is what it says in verse 39: After you, speaking to Nebuchadnezzar, there will arise another kingdom inferior to you, then, and you want to mark the after and the then with a time clock, then another third kingdom of bronze, which will rule over all the earth. All right, so the head of gold, we know that’s Babylon. We know now that that’s number one. We know that it’s number one because he’s just told us that there’s a number three. So go back and next to that line where you have Babylon, put number one. Next to silver put number two.

Next to bronze put number three. Okay, because he has started numbering them. All right, next to the bronze, underneath it we know that the bonze kingdom will rule over all the earth. Okay, that’s all we know about it. All right, and then it says verse 4, there will be a fourth kingdom. The then implies a sequence of time and there’s a fourth kingdom. So this is by the legs and by the feet. All right, as strong as iron, as iron crushes and shatters all things so that like iron that breaks in pieces, it will crush and break all these in pieces. These what? These other three. All right, so you want to put fourth kingdom next to the iron.

You want to put iron because he hasn’t told us who it is. All right, so we just know it’s Babylon, silver, bronze and iron. And then underneath that you want to put down that it is going to crush and shatter all these. It’s going to crush and shatter number one, two and three. All right, now, let’s go on and see what it says, verse 41: In that you saw the feet and toes, which are part of this fourth kingdom, partly of potter’s clay and partly of iron, it will be a divided kingdom. Okay, so what you want to put down under this fourth kingdom of the stats that you’re putting down so that you eventually will understand what this is; it’s a divided kingdom.

Now stop and think. It’s a statue we’re looking at, not the head of the statue, which is one head. We’re not looking at the chest of the statue, which is one chest with two arms attached to it. We’re not looking at the belly and the thighs of the statue. We’re looking at the legs of the statue. So there it’s divided into two, but then the toes divide it even more. It’s, so it’s a divided kingdom. It ends up being a divided kingdom of ten toes.

All right, so it is a divided kingdom and you know that it’s a divided kingdom at that point because he’s talking about the toes, the toes that are partly clay and partly iron. It will be a divided kingdom. But will, it will have in it the toughness of iron in as much as you saw the iron mixed with common clay. So it’s a divided kingdom; it’s partly clay and it’s partly iron, but it is still tough. It is still tough because it has the iron in the toes.

All right, now he’s going to give us another detail. It says and as the toes of the feet were partly iron and partly of pottery, so some of the kingdom will be strong and part of it will be brittle. So here is a kingdom that is divided into ten segments. Part of it is strong and part of it is brittle. It goes on to say, and in that you saw the iron mixed with common clay, they will combine with one another in the seed of men.

All right now, what does it mean that they will be combined together in the seed of men? We know that it’s ten. It’s part of a kingdom, so there’s going to be some sort of a federation here. That federation will be in the seed of men, so all we know is that it is going to come between men or with men. And so you’ve got human people behind these kingdoms obviously. You always do. And it’s combining together in the seed of men. But they will not adhere to one another, one another.

Now if you can just imagine taking your hands and spreading out your fingers so that you’ve got ten fingers in front of you, and imagine them to be toes. All right here they are, part iron, part clay, but they’re not combining with one another. It’s not as if you closed all your fingers and hooked your two hands together so that it’s, it’s like one unit. He’s saying that this is a federation. Part of it’s strong. Part of it is brittle or weak and they’ve combined together in the seed of men, they’ve, they’ve united together and yet they are not going to adhere to one another. In other words they’re going to be independent. They’ve united themselves in this fourth kingdom and yet they’re retaining their independence. It says even as iron does not combine with pottery.

Okay, now verse 44: And in the days of those kings. So when he’s talking about these ten toes he’s talking about these kings, these ten kings, these ten kings that are in the seed of men, these ten kings that are in a federation, these ten that make up a fourth kingdom, but are not really adhering to one another, but they’re in this federation. In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom, which will never be destroyed. Do you realize what you have just read? You may not understand it. You may wonder what is the second and the third and the fourth kingdom. And I will tell you this: Daniel’s going to let you know.

Daniel’s going to let you know. I’m not going to tell you and you may have heard, as I said before, you may have heard what it is, but let’s just wait and see. Let’s just take what God gives us. Let’s take the things that He gives us, the things that He makes clear and go with those until He makes more, makes it clearer and clearer to us. But this is what you know: You know one fact, absolute fact for certain and what is it? I’m going to tell you after this announcement. 

 

PART TWO

Daniel, chapter 2:44 to me is one of the most incredible verses because it tells you what it’s going to be like in the world when the God of heaven sets up His kingdom, which will never be destroyed. In the days of those kings the God of heaven, and you would want to mark all these references to God.

The God of heaven will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed, and that kingdom will not be left for another people; it, God’s kingdom will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, but it, God’s kingdom will itself endure forever. Inasmuch as you saw that a stone was cut out of the mountain without hands and that it crushed the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold, the great God has made known to the king what will take place in the future; so the dream is true and its interpretation is trustworthy.

He says I’ve told you the dream; I’ve told you the interpretation and it’s trustworthy. It is going to come to pass. It won’t come to pass tomorrow, obviously, but it is going to come to pass. He has told you how many major kingdoms there will be.

And he has told you what’s going to happen to all those kingdoms when the God of heaven sets up His kingdom. He has told you that that stone which is cut without hands out of a mountain and crushes the statue. And where does it crush the statue? That’s important. Does it crush it in its side? No, it doesn’t say that. Does it crush it in its head? No, it doesn’t say that. It crushes it in its feet because that’s when the God of heaven is going to set up His kingdom, in the days of those kings, in the days of those ten toes. And you’re going to have to think about this. And you’re going to have to read it.

And you read it and you don’t add anything to it. You let the text say what it says. And you can know this that what Daniel told was true and the interpretation was trustworthy and it is God that is doing it. It says then King Nebuchadnezzar fell on his face and did homage to Daniel, and gave orders to present to him an offering and fragrant incense. And the king answered Daniel and said, surely your God is a God of gods and a Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries, since you have been able to reveal this mystery. Now listen to what Nebuchadnezzar is now saying about God. Look at how God is working in Nebuchadnezzar’s life.

And you’re going to see it more and more as we progress through the book of Daniel. It’s awesome. God takes this king, uses him as a rod of judgment and this is what Jeremiah says, to judge God’s holy people, to judge God’s holy nation because they did not obey God, and so God is bringing the fruit of their ways on them just like He said in the end of Deuteronomy, I will bless you if you will obey Me; I will curse you if you disobey Me.

If you disobey Me I will bring someone down from the north; I will take you captive, and this exactly what happened. But in that captivity you see the grace of God because there was a young man by the name of Daniel, a young man who had God’s hand on him, a young man who knew his God, a young man who is now being used of God and not instantly, but in a progress of time to bring Nebuchadnezzar to a deeper knowledge and understanding of who God is. And he says surely your God is a God of gods and a king, a Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries since you have been able to reveal this mystery. Then the king promoted Daniel and gave him many gifts, and he made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon and chief prefect over all the wise men of Babylon.

And Daniel made request of the king, and he appointed Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego over the administration of the province of Babylon, while Daniel was at the king’s court. In other words Daniel did not forget these three faithful Jewish friends. And he brought them in under him to rule over the province of Babylon.

So Daniel stayed at the king’s court and Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego were out there ruling over the province of Babylon. Now if you read the history books you know that, that our nation just turned against God. You know that from the 1970’s on nothing was the same in the United States of America because we began to believe that this Bible was not the Word of God. It only contained the Word of God.

And the seminaries began to preach that instead of preaching it as absolute truth. You remember that we had the feminist movement. You remember that this was a time of great change. And from that period of our history we began to go downhill morally. We were prosperous and we thought we were fine and in our prosperity we became more and more decadent in our morals. Why are the nations roaring?

Well, in Psalm 2 God tells us what’s going to happen. And in Psalm 2 He gives us an awesome prophetic psalm. Why are the nations in an uproar, and the people devising a vain thing? The kings of the earth take their stand, and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and against His Anointed. His Anointed is His Son. Let us tear their fetters apart, and cast away their cords from us! Listen, they are binding us up with these Ten Commandments.

They are binding us up with this talk about Jesus and that, and we don’t’ want these things around us. Get rid of those fetters. Get rid of those cords. He who sits in the heavens laughs, the Lord scoffs at them.

Then He will speak to them in His anger and terrify them in His fury: But as for Me, listen, God says I have installed My King upon Zion, My holy mountain. The King is coming. He says I will surely tell the decree of the Lord: He said to Me, Thou art My Son, today have I begotten Thee. Ask of Me, and I will surely give You the nations as Your inheritance. This is the Father speaking to the Son.

The Son is Jesus. The Son is the coming King, and the very ends of the earth as Thy possession. Thou shall break them with a rod of iron and Thou shall shatter them like earthenware. What’s that last kingdom like? Iron and earthenware.

And He is going to break them with His rod of iron and shatter them like earthenware. Now therefore, O kings, show discernment; shape up, you rulers of these nations.

Take warning O judges of the earth that are making decisions that are not of God, not of justice, but according to, to the way you view life, according to your philosophy. Take warning O judges of the earth when you cast decisions because there is a judge over you and that judge over you will hold you accountable. Worship the Lord with reverence and rejoice with trembling. Do homage to the Son, lest He become angry, and you perish in the way, for His wrath will soon be kindled.

How blessed are those who take refuge in Him. He is coming. Jesus is coming. And He is coming as the God Man. God, one with the Father and man, the Son of Man. So what are you and I to do now? You and I are to kiss the Son; we are to bow before Him. We are to give Him the reverence due Him. We are to live for Him and we are to remember that the nations may roar, but the day is coming when they will be crushed and shattered and only One will reign and that is the one and true living God.

Oh beloved, kiss the Son; He’s the King.

Michael James Stone

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In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, any copyrighted work herein is archived under fair use without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in reviewing the included information for personal use, non-profit research and educational purposes only.

Last Call

‘Your Devotion with Emotion’

This material was brought to you by Broadcast(B.C.)Christianity. Last Call Digest, is a ministry of Michael James Stone, volunteers, and people dedicated to the Love of God and Salvation of Souls. It is an aggragate of Christian Material selected to Bless you and Prepare you for each and every day you read them. May God Bless You as You Do!! Reading these Devotions will help you to prepare daily for life, living, and your Lord. You will hear God Speak To You thru them.  Jesus  is Coming Very Soon.

Last Call Digest

“the simple format”

Broadcast(B.C.)Christianity, operates by you, with you, and for you. “Freely you have received, freely give”  Pass this on, everywhere you can, anytime you can, anyway you can. You will be blessed if you do.LastCallDigest@michaeljamesstone.com

Last Days of the Last Generation                                                           “Last Generation”

                                      The simple format                                                                                      “the prophecy site just about prophecy”

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner.

The material is being made available in an effort to understand scripture, news, technology and society especially as it relates to God and Jesus. It is specifically for non-profit research and educational purposes only. I believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. If you wish to use this copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use,' you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. This is a completely non-commercial site for private personal use. No fee is charged, and no money is made off of the operation of this site. Nor is any implied reciprocal gratuities implied or construed.

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LastCall: How is your influence impacting future leaders? (106-3) -Barry Werner

How is your influence impacting future leaders? (106-3)

Leaders can set dynamics in motion, both positive and negative, that continue to influence the world long after they are gone.

Read 2 Kings 21:1-9.

Hezekiah prayed to God while he was on his death bed and received an extra 15 years of life. Prior to this life extension the Bible gives only a glowing report of Hezekiah’s actions. It was during these 15 years that Hezekiah became prideful and had to be rebuked by God through the prophet Isaiah. It was also during those 15 years a son named Manasseh was born. At Hezekiah’s death, Manasseh became king of Judah. Manasseh was 12 years old when he became king and he ruled in Jerusalem over the nation of Judah for 55 years.

Manasseh grew up in the home of a different Hezekiah than if he had been born in Hezekiah’s early God-honoring years. Hezekiah’s less than God-honoring influence, or at least the lack of zeal to be aggressively obedient to God’s laws, shows up in his son Manasseh’s life and rule after Hezekiah’s death. The following are just a few statements found in chapter 21 concerning Manasseh:

·        He did evil in the eyes of the Lord following the detestable practices of the nations the Lord had driven out before the Israelites (v. 2).

·        He rebuilt the high places his father Hezekiah had destroyed (v. 3).

·        He also erected altars to Baal and made an Asherah pole, as Ahab king of Israel had done (v. 3).

·        He bowed down to all the starry hosts and worshiped them (v. 3).

·        He built altars to worship the starry hosts right in the temple of the Lord (v. 4-5).

·        He sacrificed his own son in the fire of a false god, practiced sorcery, and consulted with mediums and spiritists rather than the God of Israel (v. 6).

·        He led the people astray so that they did more evil than the nations the Lord had destroyed before the Israelites were given the land (v. 9).

Manasseh misused his divinely-bestowed power by abandoning the reforms his father Hezekiah had instituted and corrupted the entire nation of Judah. Under his misguided leadership, Judah suffered an irreversible spiritual decline. Even the later reforms under his grandson Josiah were insufficient to turn the tide of national deterioration. And, all this was set in motion during the last 15 years of Hezekiah’s reign when he did not demonstrate spiritual zeal to stay true to God’s principles.

Manasseh’s actions so angered God that He spoke the following words: “Therefore this is what the Lord, the God of Israel says: ‘I am going to bring such disaster on Jerusalem and Judah that the ears of everyone who hears of it will tingle. I will stretch out over Jerusalem the measuring line used against Samaria and the plumb line used against the house of Ahab. I will wipe out Jerusalem as one wipes a dish, wiping it and turning it upside down. I will forsake the remnant of my inheritance and hand them over to their enemies’” (2 Kings 21:12-13).

Leaders by definition are people who have influence. If you were gone tomorrow and your influence was demonstrated through your team’s future actions, would the results of your influence please and honor God? Wise, godly leaders regularly evaluate their attitude and actions and make changes when necessary to consistently honor God; striving to insure their continuing influence through their team has a chance to carry God-honoring values into the future.

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« Does your leadership include confrontation when needed? (106-2)

Are you humble and teachable? (106-4) »

Michael James Stone

Fair Use Notice

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, any copyrighted work herein is archived under fair use without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in reviewing the included information for personal use, non-profit research and educational purposes only.

Last Call

‘Your Devotion with Emotion’

This material was brought to you by Broadcast(B.C.)Christianity. Last Call Digest, is a ministry of Michael James Stone, volunteers, and people dedicated to the Love of God and Salvation of Souls. It is an aggragate of Christian Material selected to Bless you and Prepare you for each and every day you read them. May God Bless You as You Do!! Reading these Devotions will help you to prepare daily for life, living, and your Lord. You will hear God Speak To You thru them.  Jesus  is Coming Very Soon.

Last Call Digest

“the simple format”

Broadcast(B.C.)Christianity, operates by you, with you, and for you. “Freely you have received, freely give”  Pass this on, everywhere you can, anytime you can, anyway you can. You will be blessed if you do.LastCallDigest@michaeljamesstone.com

Last Days of the Last Generation                                                           “Last Generation”

                                      The simple format                                                                                      “the prophecy site just about prophecy”

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner.

The material is being made available in an effort to understand scripture, news, technology and society especially as it relates to God and Jesus. It is specifically for non-profit research and educational purposes only. I believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. If you wish to use this copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use,' you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. This is a completely non-commercial site for private personal use. No fee is charged, and no money is made off of the operation of this site. Nor is any implied reciprocal gratuities implied or construed.

Posted via email from The Last Call Digest

Bob Coy on What Kids Pray (Video)

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Michael James Stone

Fair Use Notice

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, any copyrighted work herein is archived under fair use without profit or payment to those who have expressed a prior interest in reviewing the included information for personal use, non-profit research and educational purposes only.

Last Call

‘Your Devotion with Emotion’

This material was brought to you by Broadcast(B.C.)Christianity. Last Call Digest, is a ministry of Michael James Stone, volunteers, and people dedicated to the Love of God and Salvation of Souls. It is an aggragate of Christian Material selected to Bless you and Prepare you for each and every day you read them. May God Bless You as You Do!! Reading these Devotions will help you to prepare daily for life, living, and your Lord. You will hear God Speak To You thru them.  Jesus  is Coming Very Soon.

Last Call Digest

“the simple format”

Broadcast(B.C.)Christianity, operates by you, with you, and for you. “Freely you have received, freely give”  Pass this on, everywhere you can, anytime you can, anyway you can. You will be blessed if you do.LastCallDigest@michaeljamesstone.com

Last Days of the Last Generation                                                           “Last Generation”

                                      The simple format                                                                                      “the prophecy site just about prophecy”

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner.

The material is being made available in an effort to understand scripture, news, technology and society especially as it relates to God and Jesus. It is specifically for non-profit research and educational purposes only. I believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. If you wish to use this copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use,' you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. This is a completely non-commercial site for private personal use. No fee is charged, and no money is made off of the operation of this site. Nor is any implied reciprocal gratuities implied or construed.

Posted via email from The Last Call Digest

LastCall: Our bodies are precious; they are a gift from God. -Melody Green

"Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves withproper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments; but rather by means of good works, as befits womenmaking a claim to godliness." (I Tim 2:940) 

This simple little Scripture certainly covers a lot of ground if we look at it closely. It especially becomes more clear when we consider the dictionary definitions of some of the key words (see box) that Paul uses. How many of us can say we are really living up to the light of this passage in I Timothy? The purpose of this article is to put a searchlight on our hearts and on our motives for the way that we choose to dress - and why. This is a subject that gets whispered or giggled about a lot, but rarely is someone directly confronted about their lack of modesty. It is a very delicate subject. . . but that's all the more reason to talk about it openly and honestly. 

Are You Making A Claim To Godliness?

Essentially, the Scripture in I Timothy says that it's all right to dress however you want to, unless you aremaking a claim to godliness. In that case, the way that you dress (along with the rest of your life) must be subject to the guidelines and control of the Holy Spirit. 

Our bodies are precious because they are a gift from God. They are attractive because God made us in His image for His pleasure (and if we are married, to please our mates as well). But God never intended us to flaunt ourselves or exhibit our bodies in an immodest way. He wants our bodies consecrated to him. "I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship." (Rom. 12:1) It surely must grieve the Lord to see the thoughtless way so many "modern" Christians dress. It's true that their bodies may be a living sacrifice-but to which god?

Modest-Having a regard for decencies of behavior or dress; quiet and humble in appearance, style, etc.; not displaying one's body; not boastful or vain; unassuming; virtuous; shy or reserved; chaste.

Proper-Specially adapted or suitable; appropriate; conforming to an accepted standard; correct; fitting; right; decent.

Discreet-Lacking ostentation or pretension; "showing good judgment"; prudent; cautious; careful about what one says or does.

TRANSFORMED NOT CONFORMED

It might seem to many of us that modesty is a thing of the past. I know before I became a Christian I didn't have the slightest idea of what it meant to dress properly. Looking back, it's hard to believe I even left the house in some of the things I used to wear (and not wear!), let alone that I wore them without even a blush!(Jer. 6:15) 

The Bible in very clear terms tells us not to be conformed to the world, but instead, to be transformed.(Rom. 12:2) Webster's Dictionary tells us that to be transformed means a change of outward appearance or inner nature. I guess that's why it amazes me to see young Christian girls (and even more mature women) in church or at outdoor gatherings, hands uplifted in praise to God, while dressed in clothes that definitely do not give Him the glory. 

In the summertime especially, we have our biggest opportunity to test our consecration to Jesus. Sheer blouses, halter-tops, "short" shorts, and skimpy bathing-suits are the norm for many careless Christian women. They use the rationalization that "it's hot" or "I'm swimming" to excuse their lack of modesty. Clothes that fit too tightly, tops that are cut too low, and skirts that are cut too short are not only a distraction to those around us-but the wearers show an unloving lack of concern for their responsibility as a representative of Jesus. 

Unfortunately, it seems that many Christians are lost in their own selfish little world-either oblivious or uncaring about the affect they have on others. They may even appear to have a real excitement and love for the Lord-however, their body is sending out a totally different message. I know, because as I said before, I have done it-partly in ignorance, but mostly in rebellion. I can remember thinking, "Well, it's not my fault if they can't keep their eyes off of me and on the Lord. They just aren't spiritual enough. Why should I have to change just because they are weak?" 

But the Lord showed me that it was my fault. I was responsible for causing my brother to stumble and it had to change. Once I really saw the damage my selfishness was doing to others and to the Lord, I was really ashamed of myself and embarrassed that I had been representing Jesus in such an unbecoming way. "It is inevitable that stumbling blocks should come, but woe to him through whom they come! It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea, than that he should cause one of these little ones to stumble." (Luke 17:1-2) 

The Fashion Queen

Worldly dress is quite revealing. First and foremost it reveals a worldly heart It also reveals wrong priorities and areas that are not yielded to God. Being dressed in a worldly manner does not always mean that you are dressed immodestly. It may simply mean that your style is flashy or overdone-generally speaking, just "too much. " If your perfume arrives at church five minutes before you do, who are you trying to kid? Did you put it on for Jesus? If you are drawing attention to yourself, then you are drawing attention away from God and stealing His glory. 

Here are some simple questions. Are you considered a trendsetter-usually the first to buy the latest style? Do you spend a lot of time and money shopping for new clothes? Are you always thinking about what you're going to wear? Do heads turn to see your newest outfit-and do you enjoy turning heads? If you can answer yes to even one of those questions, it's quite possible that you are seeking man's attention instead of God's. As a famous evangelist once said, "Be honest about it, would you take all this pain about your looks if every person were blind?" 

Pretty...Not Painted

I believe that too many Christian women overdo it when it comes to putting on their make-up. They arrive to fellowship with the world's "come and get me" look painted on their face. They look like showgirls on their way to a nightclub, instead of someone coming in meekness and humility to meet their Lord. Their faces are prepared, but their hearts aren't! And if the Lord should really move in the meeting so as to bring some to tears of joy or repentance, they would have to fight back the tears for fear they would "ruin their face." How can you be open to a touch from God when you're so concerned about your outward appearance? It's very simple . . . you can't be! 

"Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, but the woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised." (Proverbs 31:30) 

Sheep In Wolves Clothing

I would also like to include a brief word to the fellows in this article, for you are not always exempt from the sin of vanity and the desire to be noticed. Sadly enough, I have seen many of my Christian brothers drawing attention to themselves by wearing immodestly tight clothing and looking "just like the world." Many thoughtless Christian men unbutton their shirts halfway down their chest, surround themselves in a potent cloud of after shave-and don't really care that they may be causing others to take their eyes off of Jesus. You too must be sensitive to others and give the Holy Spirit control of your life. You are responsible to surrender this whole area to Jesus and make sure that you are not causing those around you to stumble and fall. 

Acting the Harlot?

God does not think beauty is evil-how could He, He invented it in the first place! But beauty corrupted becomes harlotry. In Ezekiel 16:14-15, God says, "Then your fame went forth among the nations on account of your beauty, for it was perfect because of My splendor which I bestowed on you. But you trusted in your beauty and played the harlot because of your fame, and you poured out your harlotries on every passerby who might be willing." Here God is speaking to Jerusalem about her abominations. He compares her to a harlot to make His point, since everyone is familiar with how a harlot acts. How many of you are acting like harlots-parading yourselves, seducing with your eyes and trusting in your looks to bring you love and acceptance instead of trusting in God and putting your confidence in Him? You have heard it said that "beauty is only skin deep"-and it's true. But God can see through to the inside, and the things that are beautiful to Him are not always apparent to the common eye. 

Perfume, Powder, And Prayer (A Challenge)

The world teaches us that in order to be loved we must be beautiful, sensual, and alluring. We are assaulted daily by billboards, books, television programs, movies, and magazines that teach us "a different gospel." Sure, everyone wants to be loved . . . but why and by whom? All that is supposed to change when we meet Jesus. 

I think we will all agree that God is most concerned with the Inner man . . . the heart. But I don't think we can say, "Well, I may look worldly, but Jesus knows that in my heart I'm not." It is true that Jesus knows our heart, but I believe in most instances our outward appearance reflects our inward condition.Remember, He called the Pharisees "white-washed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead mens bones and all uncleanness." (Matt. 23:27) 

God tells us to redeem the time because the days are evil (Eph. 5:16), but many will spend more time in the morning preparing their "outward selves" than they do preparing themselves inwardly for the warfare of the day by seeking God in prayer and His Word. Sometimes we can spend so much time fixing up the outer man that the Spirit inside shrivels up and dies. 

I want to present my brothers and sisters in the Lord with a challenge. Measure the time you spend "fixing yourself up" on a daily basis. Then give at least equal time to God in prayer and Bible reading every day. We all know He deserves so much more, but if you just start there, you can let it grow as you do. 

The Other Extreme

I think it is important to make it clear that I don't think pretty clothes or a little bit of make-up is wrong. In fact, I don't necessarily think that the most godly way to dress is in a bland and unattractive manner. To be quite honest with you, I have seen many people go to the other extreme and try to draw attention to themselves by being untidy, unclean, and uncaring about themselves. They try to prove to others that they are spiritual because of their lack of concern about the way that they look This too can be another form of pride and self-righteousness-and I believe it is all equally grievous to the Lord. He wants us to find a balance and seek to glorify Him in everything we do. Humility and moderation are principles that the Bible clearly teaches. 

Marriage Is No Excuse!

There are many husbands and wives who encourage (and sometimes even demand) their mates to "look sexy." They feel that since they're already married, it won't really hurt to "turn each other on" in the way that they look and dress. I don't think there is anything wrong with dressing to please your husband or wife, in fact I think it's important that you do, but not at the expense of others. We must stay within the boundaries of the Holy Spirit, putting Jesus and His pleasure first in all we do. 

One newlywed in our ministry held up a bare little summer dress to her husband, and shaking her head said, "This has got to go." He said, "But . . that's one of my favorite dresses!" She said, "Yes, but why do you like it so much?" He slowly smiled and agreed-and out it went! 

Closet Cleaning

Many of you may really feel convicted to change and wonder what you should do now, so I would like to give you a few words of simple advice before I close. First of all, go through your closets and drawers and pull out all of the clothing that obviously has to go-and get rid of it! Next, get in front of a full-length mirror, and try on the things that are questionable. Look at yourself from all angles using a hand-held mirror. Look at yourself close up and from far away and see what you "really look like" in the clothes you have been wearing. View yourself objectively, as if you were looking at someone else-and note what your first impressions are of "this person." Check for fit and transparency and get rid of anything that doesn't pass the test-this is no time to be sentimental! Finally, each day before you leave the house, do the "mirror check" on anything that hasn't previously been checked or if you have gained weight since last taking a look. You will be surprised to find that some of the things you were sure about won't pass the test. This will help you weed out your wardrobe as you go. Some of you may be afraid that if you do this, you'll end up with nothing left to wear! But just remember that the most important thing is to be obedient to God, even if it means having a very limited wardrobe. Besides, when you are all done with this project, you will become a much more careful shopper and end up being a better steward over God's money than you ever were before! 

True Beauty

True beauty is Jesus and Him alone. Letting that love flow through us to others is the beauty that is pleasing to God. Paul says we are to adorn ourselves with good works. . . as servants of the Lord, vessels through which others can feel His touch on their lives. Why would we want to substitute the world's counterfeit for the real thing? 

True beauty radiates from the face of a godly man or woman. You won't notice much what they really look like because you are too busy noticing Jesus in them. Shouldn't that be our goal? Let's allow Jesus to so fully indwell us that we would never do or say anything that would bring shame to His name . . . yielding our whole lives to Him and serving Him in the inner courts of His holiness. Let's not forget that we are His Bride-and so dress accordingly as we fully divorce ourselves from the world and clothe ourselves with the righteousness of God! (Isaiah 61:10) 

May God bless you as you seek Him about what all this might mean to you personally. Please take the whole matter to heart (and prayer) and then be obedient to change the things in your life that you find are displeasing to God. 

"Give unto the Lord the glory due His name; bring an offering, and come before Him; worship the Lord in thebeauty of holiness." (I Chron. 16:29) 

Michael James Stone

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One Thousand Years: Genesage "a still small thought" (Chp3:8)

One Thousand Years

Genesage

"a still small thought"

(Chp3:8)

Ezra-Vivor nudged him slightly from his revelry.

Eben smiled as he turned his attention to the present.  Meanwhile on his other side Nehe-Vivor coughed loudly. The rest of the room had been talking quietly to each other or shuffling into seating.

It was still early in the day. Everyone was used to “ole Eben” with his morning routine. No one minded the casual style. No one was in a hurry. The ease of which these daily meetings or conferences met; it added a routine to a pretty sedate lifestyle.

Some had been feeling like that would change soon; there was something in the air. No one had said anything nor had there been any drastic changes recently, in fact, if anything, one day was just as the another day. Seemingly little changed from day to day.

The OT’s ;“the Oties” as they were often called, Old Timers felt a growing angst to move on. Of course the Oties (OT’s) always were in an angst about something, or so it seemed.

Yet.., You could sense a change coming if you looked close enough.

The cloud cover had been getting slightly brighter; the world had grown phenomenally in the land and the World, at least here, looked lush and plush rather than dead and grey.

Survivors were branching out and meeting each other from other communities on a regular basis, “the times they were a changin.”

The children who had grown up into this way of life; they simply thought everyday they lived it was norm to their living.

They had done it so long, they didn't think about any other way of living.

But the parents were always talking of how much better it was before the Kingdom. All that they had, all that they did, all that they accomplished. Maybe not all the parents thought it was better before, but certainly quite a few. Mumbling was not yet grumbling but for some it was hard to tell the difference.

Change was about to happen.

Looking around the table Eben caught the eye of several of the community members. Genuinely smiling to everyone either nodding or speaking a greeting to each as they were wont to receive it. He liked to make “eye contact”. Often he saw more than they said, and more than that, he had grown fond of each one.

The "children" of the Kingdom who were in community had grown.

They were easily in their twenty's and thirty's since the year was really 69KA or the sixty ninth year since Jesus had set up the Kingdom on Earth. This “Age of Mankind” was called the kingdom age, so the time reference was not BC or AD being before Christ or after, nor BCE or CE, being before Common Era or Common Era. This was The Kingdom of God Age.

The Kingdom Age.

When God had come from Heaven to Earth to rule and reign one thousand years. So (KA), Kingdom Age Sixty-nine with the Kids of the Kingdom full grown, more or less. Of course maturity was where you found it.

  Each kid of the kingdom was a special delight to "ole Eben" for they seemed so full of life and zeal.

Eben really wasn't that old, but like many who had already been here waiting for those Survivors who had lived through the Tribulation, he seemed to age less. Old in knowledge certainly which added an air of respectability; but almost young appearing at times when he smiled. Which he did frequently.

No one could put a finger on just what was different but those who had been raptured were now called” God kind” instead of “Man kind.”

Yet like Eben, they seemed normal enough.

Whenever discussions would begin to broach that subject in the conferences/classes, Eben would ask everyone to close their eyes, hold them tight shut, then open them.

"See a halo over my head?"

The answer was always no.

He would say, “ok, bow your heads, close your eyes, say amen out loud”, only a few would do it with the others laughing.

"See any wings on me?"

As much as Eben enjoyed the younger set, he appeared to really understand the Older Generation more.

He had an equal yet different joy over the Old Timers who had survived the World Wide Holocaust.

He could relate to the World they had lost. Now the world around them they no longer knew or understand. It looked the same, vaguely, but there were differences in everything they thought they knew.

For them, this was a foreign land with them being the strangers.

They felt displaced. Aliens; out of sorts and really needing someone who could bridge the gap between what was new in the Kingdom and all that they had left behind. An interpreter at times, an ear at others, someone to talk to them about all the differences.

While Eben felt compassion for them, he did not miss the Old World.

Many of the Survivors did.

At times He was challenged by those who really thought they had it better back then. How they thought that really was beyond comprehension to Eben. He would like to say there was one thing he missed about the Old World; the only problem was he didn't know what that was so if he ever noticed missing it, he would let them know.

That is how I feel,

Again that familiar "voice", a still small voice or thought not his own crept in.

Often in the midst of his thinking to himself, God would speak to him gently and console and comfort his ideas as he let them fly inside his soul.   

Chuckling Eben said stroking his beard, 

"Okay okay,"

And thought privately,                       

"I am glad only half the community is survivors."

  The children of the Kingdom were a lot easier to deal with than those who looked back at before Immanuel, God with us.

The very idea of looking back meant you weren't watching where you were going so you were bound to trip sooner or later.

Somehow He could never tell his students that in ways they seemed to understand.

If only they knew what God with us really means,

sighed Eben,  and looked again around the room.

Warmth from the presence he knew would never leave him filled his heart and he felt content again at wanting others to know the Lord as he did.

They will, give them time,

give me time,

So gentle it would have been easy to ignore if not acutely attuned or "listening" for it, for him, to speak.

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