Thursday, December 11, 2008

Where Is He?

Matthew 2:2 – “…Where is he that is born king of the Jews …?”

This is a question that is real in today’s world. Satan is continuing to launch insidious attacks against the Christ of Christmas. Oh, some say that the date of December isn’t really even the actual birthdate of Jesus – we don’t know when His birthdate really was – some say spring – some say fall. And that is true – we don’t know the date. But in reality, we don’t celebrate His actual birthdate – we celebrate His birth. And we just use the traditional date that the Catholic church established. What’s important is not the date, but the event – He actually came into this race of men to provide for us the free gift of salvation.

And back to our original thought, if Satan can fuzzy that up in our thinking – if he can direct our thoughts to Santa (that’s Satan with the letters a little mixed up) – if he can get us to accept the commercialization of the season – if he can even distract us with arguing over the date, etc – then he has won the battle. A national news network has reported about the war on Christmas, and it is a war. But it’s only a distraction. The real issue is leading men to Calvary – and it’s that issue that should be getting all our attention. The devil is not going to win – I’ve read the end of the book. He’ll lose – but let us not let him take men and women with him. Let’s work to snatch brands from the burning.

We’ve Taken Christ Out Of Christmas

Why have we forgotten Jesus
When we should remember Him most?
Why do we live without Him?
Why in our own selves boast?

He gave up the splendors of Heaven
To be born into our worthless race.
For we who were sinners by nature
He was humbled for our sins to erase.

We’ve established a date in December
To celebrate the dear Saviour’s birth.
Yet, we now leave Christ out of Christmas –
We’ve made it a time of fleshly mirth.

We’ve made it a season of snowmen,
And Santa Claus, elves, and reindeer.
We’ve now taken Christ out of Christmas –
We now call it X-mas each year.

We no longer remember His coming –
We now look for Santa instead.
The babe in the manger’s forgotten,
But now a jolly man clad in red.

We need to put in Christ back in Christmas
To get our priorities right,
To give proper worship to Jesus,
And guide others into the light.
© 2006 Paul Stultz

Quote – “Ah, Christians, ring the bells of your hearts, tire the salute of your most joyous songs, ‘For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given.’” C. H. Spurgeon

Monday, December 8, 2008

Your Love is Better Than Life

Psalm 63:1-3 – “O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is; …because thy lovingkindness is better than life.”

One hot Sunday evening in the middle of the summer I heard Bryan Galloway of the Galloway Family give this testimony: “Thank God there’s a heaven someday. It’ll be sooner than we think, that’s for sure. If Jesus came back right now, I wouldn’t have to go back to North Carolina for a thing. That’s right. I wouldn’t have to go back for a thing. As a matter of fact, I’d as soon go to heaven from right here as anywhere I know of. But the glory that God’s got in store for his young’ns – hey it’s not even entered into our minds. It’s so big and vast it’ll take a glorified body to take it in. But I’m persuaded that God doesn’t just want us to experience heaven someday – I believe God wants us to experience heaven today. Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven.

They’re in an uproar over there – they’re in absolute, complete, unhindered worship. The weighty presence of God is just so thick and so manifested – Holy, Holy, Holy – and they don’t get familiar with it. Y’know sometimes I’m afraid we get familiar with worship, in a sense. But they don’t get familiar with it, and man what an awesome time it’s going to be. But God wants that in our lives now. Honestly I’ve been in some great services. I was thinking of one service when the power of God hit a church and simultaneously – without any announcement or anybody standing up and saying I want you to do this – everybody in that building hit the floor on their face. I mean the presence of God just came in so thick, you couldn’t help but do it. It was like God just pressed us all down in the dirt and I just cried and squawled, and everybody was crying and squawling.

You say you don’t believe that. Honest before God, that never strained God one bit. There’s more of that – my heart needs it. I don’t know about you, but I’m a square peg driven in a round hole. I don’t fit down here. I’m a misfit down here. I need heaven now in my body and in my soul. That’s what David was crying out for – is for heaven right now and to see God’s glory, that manifested presence as he’d seen it in the past. Hey, I don’t believe God’s done – I don’t believe God’s through – I really don’t. Sometimes I think we think He’s through – we act like He is.” The Galloway Family then sang this song,

Better than Life

In a dry and weary land where is no water, My soul is thirsting for you.
I have seen you in the sanctuary, beheld your power and glory.
My lips will glorify you.
I will praise you as long as I live – In your name I will lift up my hands.
Your love is better than life. Your love is better than life.
Earnestly I seek you, my soul is thirsting for you.
Cause your love is better than life.

Because you are my help I will be singing in the shadow of your wing.
I’m staying close beside you. Your right hand upholds me.
I think of you through the night.
With singing lips I will praise. My soul will be satisfied
Your love is better than life. Your love is better than life.
Earnestly I seek you, my soul is thirsting for you.
Cause your love is better than life

O God, you are my God. Earnestly I seek you. I’m longing for you.
O God, you are my God. Earnestly I seek you I’m longing for you.
Your love is better than life. Your love is better than life.
Keith Lancaster

Quote –How frequently have believers traversed in their experience this dry and thirsty land, where spiritual joys are things forgotten, and how truly can they testify that the only true necessity of that country is the near presence of their God!”C.H. Spurgeon

"He Knows My Name" - MVBC Young Ladies Trio

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