Discernment: The Road of Death v. Life

The RoadQuestion: Does my belief in Jesus mean I have eternal life?

Recently a friend recommended a summer read that I have found to be tremendously insightful in this current age. It looks at common deceptions amongst “Believers” about eternal life. I have been reminded again of the shortness of this life and the transition each of us will make from this life into the next one. I want to urge each of you to examine the course you are taking on this life before your calling to the next one. You may be comfortable and happy in your present life, but God is asking us to closely examine if our present life is consistent with what God promises on eternal life. As parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents, or friends of small children you know what it is like to keep watchful eyes on children, especially in the 0-2 age, playing outside. Though they are aware of many things, they are not aware like we are that running into a busily trafficked road at any age but especially 0-2 will certainly result in death. The same is true for Believers journeying on this side of eternity. Abba is keeping watchful eyes on each of us along with His watchmen/watchwomen. He sees some of us running towards the busily trafficked road of the flesh life that will result in certain eternal death and He is asking some of His “Believers” to step in and bring you away from The Road.

1. “Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?” – Matthew 7:22.

Here Jesus issues a warning to “Believers” that we will notice comes up many more times about the time coming when MANY not few “Believers” in Christ Jesus will be disappointed and turned away from eternal life. These individuals participated on hospitality team, the prayer team, the prophetic team, and all sorts of good works ministries but they still will not receive eternal life. What?!

2. “Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” – 1 Corinthians 6:10.

The Lord explains why “Believers” in Christ Jesus will be turned away from eternal life: unrepentant. Jesus has clearly repeated the above are a one way ticket away from His Kingdom. Jesus warns us we CANNOT have eternal life and actively practice the above. For many of this current age, sexual sin is your busy road. Magazines, movies, and even family condone or tolerate what God does not. If you are not married in Christ Jesus and continue to have a sexual relationship you will be excluded from the Kingdom of God. Common law marriage is not marriage in Christ Jesus. God will not honor it. Please reconsider. The time is short. Yeshua will accept no excuses. It is a choice.

3. “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’ “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’ “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.” Matthew 25:41-46.

Jesus issues a very specific warning to “Believers” about yet another deception. You CANNOT expect to receive eternal life if you persist in ignoring the poor. Each of you have opportunities to serve the poor and many of you persist in ignoring the call by God to serve them. Churches and faith based non-profits seem to always be short on volunteers yet “Christian” dinner parties don’t. Why? God tells us this is a heart matter and though we may think “that community or person is not my problem”, they are. Each time you say no or ignore an opportunity to help feed the poor, invite the homeless in, cloth those who need clothing, visit the imprisoned and the sick, you tell Jesus no. Jesus is telling you that He is a part of each of these individuals. When you persist in rejecting those God commands you to serve, you persist in rejecting Him and HE will reject you when you leave this side of eternity.

Sobering?

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples. Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. 11 These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.” – John 15:1-11

AMEN

Related Posts: Confession ; 8 Questions to Ask Before Complaining God’s Ignoring Me ; I Never Knew You
Photo Credit: The Truth Won

Discernment: Does family heritage matter in the Kingdom? Maybe

HeritageQuestion: Does my family heritage matter if I am a Believer who’s heritage is the Kingdom of heaven?

Answer: No and Yes.

No: The moment we become Believers in Christ Jesus we are immediately adopted into the eternal Kingdom (Ephesians 1:5). We no longer belong to the human heritage but to the Creator of the universe. Essentially, the human methods of separating individuals by race, ethnicity, and tribe are moot. We either belong to the Creator of the universe or we belong to Prince of the Power of the Air (see Ephesians 2) aka the Father of Lies (John 8:44).

Yes: There are some communities that seem to have persistent troubles that seem woven into the fabric of the culture. In Christian outreach, one must consider the following when trying to reach communities who are not Believers. If there is any cultural history of tribalism, alcoholism, ethnic cleansing, sexual slavery, child soldiers, black on black crime, multiculturalism (forced secondary to slavery), etc. these persistent issues have a spiritual root deeper than the person or immediate family.

Exodus addresses this issue of generational/bloodline spiritual roots.

“You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.” – Exodus 20:5-6

Often in communities where there is hardness towards each other and God, there are unresolved ancestry spiritual roots. One of the first things outreach workers should ask when one meets unbelieving individual(s) is “What is your heritage?”. This will give one a greater picture of the person’s potential spiritual baggage. If the unbelieving individual(s) have no idea of their heritage, this does not mean there are no spiritual roots. It may mean the individual(s) or community may be dealing with “orphan”, “abandonment”, or “trauma” spiritual blocks in addition to spiritual roots of “war” and “oppression”. Now think of communities where this might apply such as communities where there is no knowledge of where they derive or communities where there was trauma such as descendants of slaves or indigenous people who were pushed off their land into camps so new settlers could have a place to call home. Might these communities have some massive blood line spiritual roots to address before they will receive anything about God? These communities often state they would much rather give honor to their ancestors who were oppressed than give honor to a God who they believe was the source of turmoil in their communities (i.e. colonial “Christian” missionaries participating in slavery or land stealing practices).

Question: How does one in outreach begin to help individuals and communities with bloodline roots to become free and receive Christ Jesus?

Prayer.

PRAYER FOR HEALING THE FAMILY TREE

“Heavenly Father, I come before you as your child, in great need of your help; I have physical health needs, emotional needs, spiritual needs, and interpersonal needs. Many of my problems have been caused by my own failures, neglect and sinfulness, for which I humbly beg your forgiveness, Lord. But I also ask you to forgive the sins of my ancestors whose failures have left their effects on me in the form of unwanted tendencies, behavior patterns and defects in body, mind and spirit. Heal me, Lord, of all these disorders.

With your help I sincerely forgive everyone, especially living or dead members of my family tree, who have directly offended me or my loved ones in any way, or those whose sins have resulted in our present sufferings and disorders. In the name of your divine Son, Jesus, and in the power of his Holy Spirit, I ask you, Father, to deliver me and my entire family tree from the influence of the evil one. Free all living and dead members of my family tree, including those in adoptive relationships, and those in extended family relationships, from every contaminating form of bondage. By your loving concern for us, heavenly Father, and by the shed blood of your precious Son, Jesus, I beg you to extend your blessing to me and to all my living and deceased relatives. Heal every negative effect transmitted through all past generations, and prevent such negative effects in future generations of my family tree.

I symbolically place the cross of Jesus over the head of each person in my family tree, and between each generation; I ask you to let the cleansing blood of Jesus purify the bloodlines in my family lineage. Set your protective angels to encamp around us, and permit Archangel Raphael, the patron of healing, to administer your divine healing power to all of us, even in areas of genetic disability. Give special power to our family members’ guardian angels to heal, protect, guide and encourage each of us in all our needs. Let your healing power be released at this very moment, and let it continue as long as your sovereignty permits.

In our family tree, Lord, replace all bondage with a holy bonding in family love. And let there be an ever-deeper bonding with you, Lord, by the Holy Spirit, to your Son, Jesus. Let the family of the Holy Trinity pervade our family with its tender, warm, loving presence, so that our family may recognize and manifest that love in all our relationships. All of our unknown needs we include with this petition that we pray in Jesus’ precious Name. Amen.”

One of the first questions an outreach worker may be asked if they are a person of color who is ethnically ambiguous is “Where are you from?”. This simple question is an easy way to open the door to discuss family heritage and assess spiritual roots. You do not need to be a person of color to ask the outreach community the same question “Where are you from?”. Moreover, you do not have to pray the exact prayer above to free the outreach communities from spiritual blocks. But it is important that you do pray a prayer like it in order to release the individual and community from generational blocks in their home, culture, and community that blocks them from receiving Christ Jesus. – AMEN

Related Post: Heritage and Healing
Prayer: Saint Joseph, Patron Saint of Family Life
Photo Credit: Native American Lost Souls Geneaology

Discernment: Heritage and Healing during the Holidays

trailoftearsI don’t know about you but my earthly culture of origin loves its identity.  I’ve always known my heritage from an early age and placed high value on it.  As I’ve grown into adulthood and in my faith I have come to know my heritage as a daughter of Eternal Papa.  I am one of the many daughters adopted into the eternal family of Christ.  My prayer is that we all would vest our heritage in our heavenly eternal family.

I don’t know about you but almost every month I get asked, “Where are you from ?”, “Did you grow up in the states?”, “Where are your parents/grandparents from…originally?”.  I never really identified myself as ethnically ambiguous but I guess in a country of many Nations and with a mixed heritage of many African nations, I guess it might be a bit confusing for someone trying to figure out my heritage.  I suppose I would rather have someone ask my heritage than stare and not ask.  Well earlier this year I was asked one of these questions by an older Somali man.  I gave him my usual “I am from America.”  He persisted in asking the nation of origin of my parents and I persisted with “America”.  He then persisted in asking the nation of origin of my grandparents/great grandparents and I persisted with “America”.  Then he flatly asked “Where in Africa is your family originally from?”  He was certain my family was from or near Somali.  I then shared that my family is from America and we don’t know where in Africa we are from actually.  He like many who have asked me this question persisted that I should find out.

Well minus one story of thousands of Africans non-willfully being brought to the Americas and mixed amongst each other, it’d be pretty hard to pinpoint exactly my true ethnic nation of origin.  There are some rare times when I am curious but that curiosity passes as my joy in my eternal heritage takes over.  Who can beat the eternal and royal heritage of the King of King, Lord of Lords?!  So the following story is about the Heritage of Americans and the Believer.

I agree that some of this country’s original immigrants (i.e. forefathers) were Believers.  Many worked tirelessly to get my forefathers freed from slavery.  But I also know that some of this country’s original immigrants (i.e. forefathers) were not Believers.  One that kills, steals, and destroys in the name of religion does not understand the Faith and is not my forefather.  Forefather is a powerful word that assumes the heritage and inherited “stuff” (good and bad including generational sins) to you.  One observation about this country is the varied views of how it was founded.  There are some of us who believe it was founded by Christians.  There are some of us who believe it was founded by European Explorers (sans the Christian faith).  Ask a Native American about who they believe founded the U.S.A and your answer might be different?  Ask a descendant of the American slaves (African American) about who they believe founded the U.S.A. and your answer might be different?  I think the view of the heritage of America will depend on your heritage and forefathers.  If your forefathers were Native Americans, you would likely claim the founders of this country came thousands of years ago from Asia to the American continent.  If your forefathers were African slaves, you would likely claim the forefathers of this country were also Native Americans who were pushed out by European explorers seeking a new land.

Why might there be so much unresolved racial division in the U.S.A.?  I would propose because we have not healed the wounds and generational sins of the forefathers of the U.S.A.  I am reading an interesting book by John and Mark Sandford on Deliverance and Inner Healing.  They presents some really good insights into strongholds that affect larger groups of people including countries.  Their example is Nazi Germany.  There was a concept of an empire spirit that seeks to take over and conquer other Nations.  It seems one root of it could be greed.  Nonetheless, this empire stronghold and generational sins of the forefathers of one group of Nations against others forefathers of other groups of Nations remain unresolved in the land of the U.S.A.  Great wickedness and bloodshed occurred in this land and often in the name of religion.  Great sins were committed against the original inhabitants of this land and other immigrants brought to this land.  I challenge the belief that this country was founded on the Faith.  Telling falsehoods or just occupying land that is inhabited by others is stealing.  Sending blankets filled with small pox to families of Natives with the intention they would get sick and die so one could inhabit the land is murder.  Purposefully taking women from their people in order to obliterate any future ethnic heritage (also known as white washing – done in both the Americas and Australia) is not pure in motives.  Stealing and taking other Nations of people as livestock to build a new Nation that they were told they could not enjoy because they were not human was not Godly and was not Christian.  Raping the same livestock that was also told was not human is not Godly or Christian, and violates Abba’s principles on sexual morality and love.

Yes my friends, this is part of the heritage and foundation of our nation.  There is much healing that needs to take place for our country.  One of the things you learn in the ministry of healing prayer is that before you petition God you clear things up that are broken.  You repent, you cancel Satan’s authority, ask for healing, and then petition/talk with God.  One profound area I learned is the need for us as Believers is to repent and cancel Satan’s authority over us in generational sins, word curses, and inner vows.  Often as Believers we are bound to things that we cannot explain and much of it has to do with bloodline sins.  Sometimes the sins is in the environment or in the land we inhabit.  The prince of the air has reign of this earth and he has no intention of letting this nation be a nation of Beliver’s heritage.  I think our call as Believers is to go back and heal the land, and heal the wounds of the descendants before us.  The descendant victims of the thievery and slavery in the U.S.A. have corporately not healed from the generational sins committed against their forefathers.

Have you heard someone say “Why are Black people so angry?” or “Why do the Natives drink so much or commit suicide so much?”  I’ve heard these statements and maybe the answer is spiritual (generational sin and unhealed land).  Might we consider that the Native peoples are still grieving spiritually the massive thievery committed against their forefathers and their land and culture. Might we consider the descendants of African slaves including my ancestors (African Americans) are still grieving spiritually the massive sins of abuse and thievery of the identity of their forefathers.  Two Nations of God’s people in the Americas have not healed completely from the sins committed against their forefathers.  There is a spiritual bondage and not letting go of the past.  We need to pray for the healing of the generational sins of our forefathers both the offenders and victims.  You may be like my husbands’ family who did not arrive to this land until the early 1900s and have no knowledge or generational linkage to the forefathers of the Native Americans, African slaves, or European explorers but your prayer to heal the land is still needed.  We need to welcome these Nations of the Native Americans and African slaves into the adopted family of Christ.  Though their earthly identity was stolen and great sins were committed against their forefathers (including my forefathers), help them to know that God is the ultimate healer and he is just.  As one of the descendants of the wounded Nations, I can live freely in knowing that my identity is no longer in the sins committed against or by my forefathers but my identity is in an eternal heritage with God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit.  Please consider this on our American Holidays (Columbus Day, Thanksgiving).

Lord we ask that you would Bind up the wounds and generational sins of our forefathers and loose healing/freedom to each of us, securing our identity in your eternal family.  Thank you Abba.  – Amen

Related Stories: Does Heritage Matter? ; American History
Photo Credit: USG.edu
Resources: The Harbinger