7 Sep 2014
He is not here. He is risen!
Church of the Holy Spirit
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Who We Are
The Church of the Holy Spirit is a Christian church.
We believe in God the Father....our Father, Creator
In Jesus, the Messiah....our Savior and Lord
Holy Spirit, our Comforter, Teacher, and Guide.
We believe that God made the heavens, the earth, and all creatures therein.
And that He forgives us of our sins.
God has given all creatures His son, Jesus, who died on a cross and arose from the dead.
We believe Jesus went to heaven and is now seated at God’s right hand.
Jesus' death and resurrection has given us the opportunity to receive the gift of eternal life.
God has given us Holy Spirit to teach, comfort, and guide us.
We believe the Bible is the inspired word of God.
Jesus Christ from Nazareth, the man who was crucified, was raised from the dead by God!
Jesus has now become the cornerstone.
"There is salvation in no one else! There is no other name in all of heaven for people to call on to save them."
Acts 4: 10 - 12
Holy Bible New Living Translation
Who are God, Jesus and Holy Spirit?
God is our heavenly Father who created the heavens and the earth. He lovingly forgives our sins. God gave us His Son, Jesus, who died on a cross, and arose from the dead. Jesus now sits at the right hand of God. He is the Messiah, our Savior. He can be our Lord, if we believe in him and accept him. He gave us the opportunity to receive eternal life. When Jesus went to heaven, Holy Spirit was made available to us to comfort, teach, and guide us.
God in the beginning: Genesis 1 & 2
Jesus: Matthew 1, 2 & 3
Holy Spirit: John 15:26, 16:5-15
Are you one with God, Jesus and Holy Spirit?
If you have not accepted the Trinity (God, Jesus, Holy Spirit) into your life to receive all they have to give you, and you would like to, pray this prayer or use your own words from your heart:
“Dear Heavenly Father God, please forgive me of my sins known and unknown. Jesus, please come into my life, heal me, and make me whole. Give me a new life in and with you. I wish to receive all that you have to give. Baptize me in the fullness of your Holy Spirit, so that I can learn all I can about you, to love you as you love me, so I can love others, and, so I can love myself. Holy Spirit, please fill me to overflowing with all the fruits and the gifts you have to give me to help me grow in Christ Jesus and be able to share the Trinity with others. Thank you for giving me this new life. Please send other Christians to surround me to help me grow and be strong to defeat Satan and the things of the world. Help me to be worthy of your love. Thank you God, Jesus and Holy Spirit. In Jesus' name I pray, by and with the power of the Holy Spirit, to dear Heavenly Father God. Amen.”
If you have prayed this prayer, or one from your heart, please email us at TrinityMissions@msn.com, so we can agree with you in prayer, praise God, and uplift you with prayer support. We are thrilled to welcome you into the family of believers and encourage you to find a church home nearby where you can study, grow, and fellowship with others. Someone may need your support as much as you need them. We are commanded to come together in fellowship to worship His majesty.
If you choose to fellowship with us via the web, we are honored to welcome you to the Church of the Holy Spirit. We pray you will be enriched and uplifted in the fullness of the Trinity to their glory. Stay in touch and let us know how you are doing from time to time. We hope to have a special page for this purpose. We now have a page where you will be able to list prayers for all to see, so that we may come together praying as a body of believers, for Jesus said, ‘wherever two or more shall gather, there will I be.’ Don’t forget to send prayers of thanksgiving, as well as petitions of tears.
You are who God calls ‘The Promise Children’, as in Romans 9:25-26 NLT:
“Those who were not my people, I will now call my people. And I will love those whom I did not love before. And, once they were told, ‘You are not my people.’ But now he will say, ‘You are children of the living God.”
“The Kingdom of God is near you now.”
The Apostle Paul gave us this “Prayer for Spiritual Empowerment” in Ephesians 3:14-21 NLT. It reads
“When I think of the wisdom and scope of God’s plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
Now glory be to God! By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope. May he be given glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever through endless ages. Amen.”
Jesus told us to remain in his love in John 15:9-13 NLT:
“I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. When you obey me, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father and remain in his love. I have told you this so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! I command you to love each other in the same way that I love you. And here is how to measure it - the greatest love is shown when people lay down their lives for their friends."
September 7, 2014
Doors And Fences
Acts 9: 22-25
Saul's preaching became more and more powerful, and the Jews in Damascus couldn't refute his proofs that Jesus was indeed the Messiah. After a while the Jewish leaders decided to kill him. But Saul was told about their plot, and that they were watching for him day and night at the city gate so they could murder him. So during the night, some of the other believers let him down in a large basket through an opening in the city wall.
There are going to be people in the world who, tho' they are religious (defined as: they believe in God, study his life, his sayings, and seek to follow his path), 'have a touch of the devil in them', as an Irishman might say. I'm Irish, I can say that. Whereby Jesus sought to have all who believe in God believe also in him, obviously, based on documented history in todays lesson, and history since, that hasn't always happened. There are also those who may go to church believing in 'something', but that something might make their higher power no different than the door knob they look up to with their lowered self-esteem. And we all know there are many who plain don't 'subscribe', so to speak, or go to church at all.
So we have, 'those from column A, those from column B, and some from column C, with quite a few in between, because nothing seems to be clearly black or white, there are definitely shades of gray. However, Jesus clearly indicated he wished we were either hot or cold. Being 'on the fence' does not help us in our journey to the pearly gates....heaven. Let's see what he said in Revelations 3:15-16:
Jesus said, "I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish you were one or the other! [Note the exclamation point.] "But since you are lukewarm water, I will spit you out of my mouth!"
He goes on to say in verses 20-22, still in Revelation 3:
"Look! Here I stand at the door and knock. If you hear me calling and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal as friends. I invite everyone who is victorious to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat with my Father on his throne. And anyone who is willing to hear should listen to the Spirit and understand what the Spirit is saying to the churches."
But did you know, Satan stands at the door, too?! Both Matthew and Luke record Satan knocking at Jesus' door (metaphorically) in chapters 4 of each. Satan came at Jesus full force after he was baptized in water for forgiveness of his sins, and received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Remember that Jesus went into the desert for 40 days to be strengthened, taught, given direction, and nourished by God? Well....there was old Satan....ready to tromp on him, twist what he'd learned, take him away from the right path of life, lead him into the depths of hell, tempt and test him hoping he'd have doubts and stray to his (Satan's) side of life, rather than into right living, Heavenly God-liness, and the forward path to insure he did what he was supposed to do, be with God in heaven one day, and save the world. Like Mighty Mouse would say in the cartoons, "Here I come to save the day!", Jesus' whole life and resurrection was about exactly the same thing, to include the people in that day....this day, the days before, and the days after!
Consider ways that you may be tempted by Satan at the door of eternal life. We learn about some of them in Mark 7 as Jesus speaks about what was recorded in Isaiah 29:13 as God's ideal: 'These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far away. Their worship is a farce, for they replace God's commands with their own man-made teachings.' Although this was in reference to eating, Jesus clearly saw there was a bigger picture to address. He goes on to tell the people...and us today....that folks reject the laws of God in order to protect personal traditions. He gives the example of folks not honoring their parents. (Read Mark 7:1-13.) Let's see what else he said. In verse 14 he called to the crowd to come and hear. "All of you listen," he said, "and try to understand. You are not defiled by what you eat; you are defiled by what you say and do!"
Do you see a door here yet?
Following in verses 17 - 23 we learn, 'Then Jesus went into a house to get away from the crowds, and his disciples asked him what he meant by the statement he had made. "Don't you understand either?" he asked. "Can't you see that what you eat won't defile you? Food doesn't come in contact with your heart, but only passes through the stomach and then comes out again." And then he added, "It is the thought life that defiles you. For from within, out of a person's heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, eagerness for lustful pleasure, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you and make you unacceptable to God."
I'm guessing you might see a door here now.
Jesus said, as recorded in Matthew 7
Paul addressed the (metaphorical) door also in Galatians 5:4-6:
"If you are trying to make yourselves right with God by keeping the law, you have been cut off from Christ! You have fallen away from God's grace. But we who live by the Spirit eagerly wait to receive everything promised to us who are right with God through faith. For when we place our faith in Christ Jesus [rather than Satan], it makes no difference to God whether we are circumcised or not [Jew or Gentile....Catholic or Protestant] what is [BIG IS] important is faith expressing itself in love." He's saying, in plain language, just go through the door that God, Jesus, Holy Spirit open to eternal life.
Paul goes on to say the following in verse 7-10, for those who were hot, but are now on the wrong [Satan's non-Heavenly Eternal life giving] side of the fence....NOT the side with God, Jesus, Holy Spirit: "You were getting along so well. Who has interfered with you to hold you back from following the truth? It certainly isn't God, for he is the one who called you to freedom. But it takes only one wrong person among you to infect all the others - a little yeast spreads quickly through the whole batch of dough! I am trusting the Lord to bring you back to believing as I do about these things. God will [BIG WILL] judge that person, whoever it is, who has been troubling and confusing you."
Paul also tells us continuing in verses 13-15, "For you have been called to live in freedom - not freedom to satisfy your sinful nature, but freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: "Love your neighbor as yourself."
How does he define sinful nature? Just like Jesus. He says, "The old sinful nature loves to do evil, which is just opposite from what the Holy Spirit wants." And right now you are probably thinking that you do not do anything 'evil'. Read on. He goes on to say that "the Spirit gives us desires that are opposite from what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, and your choices are never free from this conflict. But when you are directed by the Holy Spirit, you are no longer subject to the law." Galatians 5:16-18.
So if this seems confusing, Paul makes it clear. He said "When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, your lives will produce these evil results: [Hang on....you won't like this....it will....BIG WILL....hit close to home.] sexual immorality, impure thoughts, eagerness for lustful pleasure, idolatry, participation in demonic activities, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, division, the feeling that everyone is wrong except those in your own little group, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other kinds of sin." Yah....so....he left THAT door open, since there are TONS of words to describe numerous sinful acts, thoughts, words, deeds, etc. Think you do not fall under this list? Think again.
Then he said, "Let me tell you again [nice guy to remind] as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not [SAY NOT] inherit the Kingdom of God. [Inherit the Kingdom of God means: Be a Christian. Just because someone says they are a Christian does not make one so. We must obey and show God, Jesus, Holy Spirit that we obey....THEM. Learn more by reading John 15, Matthew 3:11-12, Matthew 13:33-43, Hebrews 6:4-6, Hebrews 10:26-27, James 2, 2 Peter 2:20-26, Jude verses 5-6.]
But there is hope on the other side of the fence and the door. Paul said, "But when the Holy Spirit controls our lives, he will [SAY WILL] produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Here there is not conflict with the law."
"Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. If [BIG....really BIG IF] we are living now by the Holy Spirit, let us follow the Holy Spirit's leading in every [SAY EVERY] part of our lives. Let us not become conceited, or irritate one another, or be jealous of one another."
Ahem....as I was saying....this list, too, will hit close to home.
Jesus said in Matthew 7:13-14, "You can enter God's Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell [where Satan and his buddies live] is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose the easy way. But the gateway to life [eternal life in God's Kingdom] is small, and the road is narrow, and only a few ever find it."
So, "Stop judging others, and you will not be judged. For others will treat you as you treat them. Whatever measure you use in judging others, it will be used to measure how you are judged. And why worry about a speck in your friend's eye, when you can't see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log from your own eye; then perhaps you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend's eye. Don't give what is holy to unholy people. Don't give pearls to swine! [We, as Christians, have the pearls within, which are God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, and their teachings, to include our graces/gifts of goodness, love, peace, etc. Satan, and his gang, belong to the swine category.] They will trample the pearls, then turn and attack you." Matthew 7:1-6
So, what is a person to do? According to Jesus as noted in Matthew 7:7-11, "Keep on asking, and you will be given what you ask for. Keep on looking, and you will find. Keep on knocking and the door will be opened. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And the door is opened to everyone who knocks. You parents - if your children ask for a oaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead? Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not! If you sinful people know ho to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him?"
Folks, what all this means is that you can go to Heavenly Father God and ask him to forgive you of your sins. You can go to Jesus and ask him into your heart to become fully one with him. You can ask Jesus to baptize you with his Holy Spirit, that you might know how to live your new life, what you are to say, do, how to act....know best how to obey and go forth. It also means you need to get on the right side of the fence and knock on the door to life....to inherit the Kingdom of God and receive eternal life.
Jesus said "I know all the things you do, and I have opened a door for you that on one can shut." Revelations 3:8.
Jesus also said, "Look! Here I stand at the door and knock. If you hear me calling and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal as friends. I will invite everyone who is victorious to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat with my Father on his throne. Anyone who is willing to hear should listen to the Sprit and understand what the Sprit is saying to theh churches." Rev 3:20
Will you listen? Will you seek? Will you knock? You WILL find. Listen closely.
Then Jesus may say, "Because you have obeyed my command to persevere, I will protect you from the great time of testing that will come upon the whole world to test those who belong to this world. Look, I am coming quickly. Hold on to what you have so that on one will take away your crown. All who are victorious will become pillars in the Temple of my God, and they will never have to leave it. And I will write my God's name on them, and they will be citizens in the new city of my God - the new Jerusalem that comes down from heaven from my God. And they will have my new name inscribed upon them. Anyone who is willing to hear should listen to the Spirit and understand what the Spirit is saying to the churches [that's all of us]. Revelations 3:10-13
"Go back to what you heard and believed at first; hold to it firmly and turn to me again." Those who do "will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. All who are victorious will be clothed in white. I will never erase their names from the Book of Life, but I will announce before my Father and his angels that they are mine. Anyone who is willing to hear should listen to the Spirit and understand what the Spirit is saying to the churches." Rev 3: 3a, 4-6.
Which side of the fence are you on? Have you knocked on the door that leads to life...eternal life? I pray so for you.
Let Us Pray
LORD, God, you take away the sins of the world. Lamb of God, Jesus, your death and resurrection gave everyone the opportunity to receive eternal life. Holy Spirit, Comforter, Teacher, Guide, you lead us onward to reach the mark for the prize of the high calling of God....Heaven. May everyone get off the fence, get on the right side of the fence....the victorious side with you, God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, and knock on the door that leads to eternal life....and your heart, your life. Let us all pick up the cross and follow your walk.... your way....obeying you. Father God, Jesus, Holy Spirit I ask you to forgive me of my sins, come into my heart and life, and lead me onward to make me whole, and help me obey you, that I might receive eternal life by showing you through my actions, words, thoughts, deeds, etc, that I am worthy. And show others how great thou art. I pray that all in the world will follow your lead....that they 'follow you more nearly', while they 'love you more dearly'....'day by day.' I praise you and thank you and love you! Amen.
Grateful for God's lesson today?
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Let us hear from Paul as he prays:
When I think of the wisdom and scope of God's plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God's marvelous love. And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
Now glory be to God! By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope. May he be given glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever through endless ages. Amen. Ephesians 3:14-21 NLT
Scroll down to read Jesus' Prayer of Thanksgiving...'The Unforced Rhythms of Grace'.
Definition of a Christian: Anyone who believes in God, Jesus and Holy Spirit, and accepts Jesus as Lord and Savior. Regardless of church name or religious affiliation.
'All who have been united with Christ in baptism have been made like him. There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female. For you are all Christians - you are ONE in Christ Jesus.' Galatians 3: 27
It is not how we worship, but that we worship....the Trinity!
Teach tolerance....reach in acceptance....worship as one!
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"Go and make disciples out of all the nations
baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this:
I am with you always, even to the end of the age."
There is no better time than now to let God, Jesus, and Holy Spirit know how grateful you are for them being there for you, all they have done for you and will do, and, show thankfulness for being fed the Word of God, so you can know and obey him.
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It is time to reach into the community and the world around you to see wherein lies the greatest need. As you choose to focus on these areas, do so with a servant's heart. Whether the need is for children, adults, or animals, or any cause in between that will help those in need, ask God how you can best serve his needs, what path you must take, and how long you should persevere. Sometimes we are to be in the lives of others merely as stepping stones. Sometimes we are to touch those lives forever. Whatever journey you are called to take, whatever team you will be a member, know this: God is with you always...even til the end of time. He loves you, is grateful for you, and will help you along life's way, especially if you are helping others along theirs, persevering with a servant's heart.
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One last thing....
Jesus' Prayer of Thanksgiving
'The Unforced Rhythms of Grace'
"Abruptly Jesus broke into prayer: "Thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth. You've concealed your ways from sophisticates and know-it-alls, but spelled them out clearly to ordinary people. Yes, Father, that's the way you like to work."
Jesus resumed talking to the people, but now tenderly. "The Father has given me all these things to do and say. This is a unique Father - Son operation, coming out of Father and Son intimacies and knowledge. No one knows the Son the way the Father does, nor the Father the way the Son does. But I'm not keeping it to myself; I'm ready to go over it line by line with anyone willing to listen."
"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me - watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn how to live freely and lightly.
Matthew 11: 25-30
And the people said,
I now write most prayers in the position of ' I ' (first person) because most people are sitting at their computer alone, not in groups, and it allows those reading and praying to personalize the prayer as coming from them going to God. Variations may appear on holidays when families may wish to use the prayer provided. I encourage you to pray your own prayers as well.
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.
NOTE: I said it long ago, but let me say it again. If you are wanting to lead a group, start a church, or are confined in an institution, or live in a country where the Gospel is not preached, and you don't know what to say or how to say it, and yet feel led to share, teach, or preach, besides just reading straight out of the Bible and sharing what God puts on your heart, please feel free to share any or all of what I've written, if it will help you, as long as you include where it comes from, due to copyright laws. Jesus gave God's love and healing freely, as well as his message. Our responsibility is to get the Word out to those who need to hear it. If what I've written....by the power and direction of the Holy Spirit....or what he has said through me....has helped you, it may help others that you know. You are welcome to share it. God calls all of us to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the world. Please share it with the fullness of love that God, Jesus, Holy Spirit....and I....have given it. Amen!
Bible Authors and Minister