Profound Disciples Ministries
|Posted on April 11, 2016 at 5:20 PM||comments (40084)|
Good morning family and friends. I hope that everyone had a blessed and enjoyable weekend. For anyone who is struggling and unsure of where your life is heading, here are some words of encouragement if you trust in The Lord! Shalom and have a blessed week!
Isaiah 43:19 (King James Bible)
Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness,and rivers in the desert.
|Posted on March 27, 2016 at 3:50 PM||comments (11673)|
I'm wishing everyone a happy Resurrection Sunday!
I don't use Easter as it is a pagan traditional holiday that was incorporated with Christianity to make it more palatable to the early Romans, although the early Europeans and Catholics have an "unsubstantiated? " story of Mary Magdalene presenting an egg to Roman Emperor Tiberius Caesar that turned Red before his eyes.
Anyway, Hallelujah! He is risen! Give Him praise and thanks today for what He, The Christ has done. If the Resurrection did not happen, we would be lost and the basis of our Christian faith would be null and void. This bears repeating with emphasis: If the Resurrection did not occur, than the basis for our faith in our hope for redemption is insignificant! Meditate on this as you enjoy your Resurrection Sunday! Shalom and be blessed everyone!
Minister E. Lionel Perry
|Posted on March 25, 2016 at 8:10 AM||comments (8469)|
Food for thought on this Friday morning.
When it seems that you are under a fast and furious attack from the enemy; remember that we are redeemed and if we acknowledge this and truly understand the power of God, we may stumble sometimes but we will not be defeated but rather, be delivered. Shalom!
Min. E. Lionel Perry
Psalm 107:2 Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy.
|Posted on March 25, 2016 at 8:05 AM||comments (6761)|
Food for thought;
The Bible makes it clear that there are multiple spiritual beings around and that all are not working for our good (Daniel 10:13 and Revelation 12:4 are a few examples). Anything and anybody can be your god (idols, money, celebrities etc.) and who you commit your eternal soul to is your choice, but realize that there is a Most High God (YAHWEH in Hebrew) who is for us, loves us, and want us to be with Him when our earthly lives are over. That is why He sent His only begotten son down to Earth to show us the way. Trust in Him and His glory and commit your soul to the one who truly cares for us. Shalom!
Min.E. Lionel Perry
|Posted on February 15, 2016 at 8:20 PM||comments (4142)|
Food for thought from a God fearing, thinking, conscious brother (Yes, I'm making trouble again for some).
My spirit has been troubled by these FB posts showing stacks of money asking people to type "Amen" if you want this, or that God is going to bless you with it for "naming it and claiming it". While The Most High indeed wants to bless us, these posts make it appear that God owes us something, and that He is nothing more than a piggy bank who only exists to do our bidding; especially when we are desiring things of the world. Maybe that’s why after typing "Amen", days, months, years later, some of you are still in that that same mode. If you only pray for worldly things, you may only get corrupted worldly things which results in a reflection of the corrupted world; (greed, corruption, wickedness, selfishness, perversion, lust etc.). God (YAHWEH) is the creator of everything, but some of us treat Him like He is stupid. Everything in our prayers should revolve around if it is God's will to allow us to have things as He is the creator of everything. If you truly read the Bible, you will know that God is faithful, but He is not mocked. For every blessing, there is a requirement that we open our "third eye", and commune with God on a supernatural level for supernatural blessings and healing, but once again, it is His will as to whether He thinks you deserve it or not. If He thinks you can’t handle it, you won't get it despite what some FB post says. Jesus (Yeshua) made it plain several times that He was among us to do the will of The Father for those who would believe. So now, do you truly believe, or are you running around doing everything that’s popular with the world, (foul mouth, corrupt speech, hateful, spiteful, along with other things mentioned earlier)? or are you seeking to connect with God on a higher level for your blessings.
Minister E. Lionel Perry
|Posted on February 15, 2016 at 8:10 PM||comments (2725)|
If You Are a Christian, Please Stop Doing These 5 Things
By Jarrid Wilson
“There is nothing wrong with trying to be relevant, but there is a line between being trendy and completely disfiguring the message of Jesus.”
Here is some stuff Christians should stop doing.
1. Telling people “I’ll pray for you” without actually praying for them.
Guilty as charged. I can’t think of anybody who hasn’t done this at one time or another. And while most of us don’t actually mean to forget, it’s probably best that we just set aside time on the spot to pray for people. Are we really so busy that we can’t stop and pray for someone’s needs? We need to make sure we are fulfilling our duties as Christians and actually follow through with them. One prayer could be the tipping point to someone coming to know the love of God. Don’t miss the opportunity to speak life into someone because you don’t think you have time.
2. Attending Church on Sunday, but ignoring God’s voice the rest of the week.
Ouch! This one stings a little. Many of us get in the habit of making God just another addition to our weekly check-list, but the reality is that our entire lives should revolve around him. God deserves #1 priority in each of our lives, and to treat him any differently would go against the foundations of the Christian faith. Evaluate the way you are spending your time, money and energy. If you want to see a change in your life then you need to begin giving God the place of honor he deserves. Stop treating God like the last kid picked in doge-ball.
3. Praying for God’s provision when we have yet to use what he has already provided.
Way too many of us tend to treat God like a personal genie. Prayer was given to us as an open line of communication between us and God, but the harsh reality is that way too many of try to use it like a drive-thru at a fast-food restaurant. You don’t get to pick and choose the way God provides, but you do get the opportunity to trust his plan and have faith in his promises. I can’t begin to explain how many times I’ve ignored God’s provision because it wasn’t wrapped the way I intended it to be. Every time we purposely ignore God’s provision, we are indirectly telling him, “I don’t trust your plan.”
4. Trying to be so relevant that we actually hurt the message of Jesus.
There is nothing wrong with trying to be relevant, but we need to understand that there is a BOLD line between being trendy, and then completely disfiguring the message of Jesus. We can’t expect to bring any change to the world when we don’t look any different from it. I’m a firm believer that Jesus came to reclaim culture and not abolish it, but this doesn’t mean we need to water down His message so that it’s easier to swallow.
5. Telling people that “God will never give you anything you can’t handle.”
Why should we stop saying this? Because it’s a lie. … We’ve completely twisted 1 Corinthians 10:13, as this verse is pointing toward temptation, and even then it states God will be there if things get too tough. The reality is that God just might give us things we can’t handle so that we will gaze toward him for the extra help. Mind blowing right? Realize that not everything is going to go the way you plan, think or hope. Sometimes stuff is going to hit the fan, and in order for you to get through it, you are going to NEED to rely on God’s comfort, peace and understanding. We weren’t meant to do life alone.
|Posted on February 15, 2016 at 8:00 PM||comments (5011)|
5 Things We Do Today Instead of Preaching the Word
By James MacDonald
James MacDonald: I wish I could tell you that most pastors are preaching the Word, but I can’t.
Excerpted from his talk given at the Acts 29 Lead Pastors’ Retreat in June 2011:
I wish I could tell you that most pastors are preaching the Word. I can’t—some are not preaching the Word. So here are five things we may choose to do instead of preaching the Word.
“Music, drama and video, felt needs, topics, more stories”
None of those things are wrong—unless they displace the preaching of the Word of God. Some teachers will tell you that you need to tell stories in your sermons or you will bore people. I’m not bored. If you’re not bored, no one is going to be bored. Can you take hold of the Word of God and take hold of a group of people and make them listen because you have something to say?
Are you bored? The greatest sin in ministry is to bore people with the Bible. Martin Lloyd Jones said, “Preaching is theology coming through a man who is on fire. A man who can speak about these things dispassionately has no right whatsoever to be in a pulpit and should never be allowed to enter one.”
You have to get the Word of God, let it grip your heart by the power of the Holy Spirit, and drive over to church with something to say.
Now if a story fits in, I might tell you a story before I sit down, but don’t make that your thing. If people come up to you afterwards and say, “I love that story you told,” it should make you crazy. Really, that’s what I am? I’m a storyteller? The Gospel is the main story that you should be telling.
We hear a pastor say, “There are some things I just want to share with you today…”
Since when is the man of God some Dr. Phil and Oprah combo? You’re supposed to proclaim a message. If you’re not preaching, glory is not coming down. You have to preach the glory down—people have to hear a word from God.
“Careful, careful, don’t offend, always comfortable, never pressured, just a pinch of truth, when they’re ready to handle it.”
The preaching of the gospel has become so watered down that the non-elect can’t even reject it.
If you don’t have people walking away from your ministry saying, “This is a hard word, who can accept it?” then you don’t have a ministry like Jesus had.
I just hate this notion that we can be so clever and sophisticated that we can remove the offense from the gospel. It is foolishness to those who are perishing; it is the power of God to those who are being saved. It is the aroma of death to those who are perishing; it is the aroma of life to those who are being saved.
Listen, preacher: If you don’t want to be the aroma of death to those who are perishing, you can never be the aroma of life to those who are being saved. That’s why preaching is hard work.
“I’ve been thinking and researching this in the original languages…”
We’re supposed to love God with our heart, soul, mind and strength. And preaching that stops at the shoulders is defective preaching. It has to move me—it has to call me to action—mind, emotions and will. If you’re just preaching your theological construct, you’re blowing it.
Stop preaching the scaffolding around the Bible and preach the Word—what God actually says.
John Calvin said, “God deigns [considers it proper] to consecrate to himself the mouths and tongues of men in order that his voice may resound in them.” Your preaching is at its best when your people have forgotten that you’re even standing there, and God’s Spirit is moving through you. I am afraid that we’ve lost sight of this.
“Twenty minute sermons”
I don’t know how it works at your church, but for us it takes five minutes to set the rig up and another five or 10 minutes to take it down. If you’re only preaching for 20 minutes, that gives you five minutes to drill. You’re not going very deep, are you? It takes some time.
Romans 10:16: Jesus said, “He who hears you, hears me.”
“He who hears you,” Jesus said, “hears me.”
Yet there’s no pridefulness, is there? It’s so humbling. It’s a crushing weight, isn’t it? I tell people the weekly message preparation is the crucible of my sanctification. Never get in a habit of getting up in the pulpit when things aren’t square everywhere. That by itself will keep you going in the right direction. “He who hears you, hears me,” Jesus said. I love that challenge—to be that person.
|Posted on February 5, 2016 at 1:55 PM||comments (2442)|
Three Common Idols in Churches
By Eric Geiger
“God’s people still struggle with taking tools for transformation and making them objects of worship.”
Hezekiah is affirmed in Scripture as doing “what was right in the Lord’s sight” (2 Kings 18:3). The next verse details what Hezekiah did: “He removed the high places, shattered the sacred pillars and cut down the Asherah poles. He broke into pieces the bronze snake that Moses made, for the Israelites burned incense to it up to that time” (2 Kings 18:4).
Surely people understood a strong, spiritual leader removing the idols (the high places and the Asherah poles) that grabbed the hearts of the people and stole worship from the Lord. They would expect their spiritual leader to insist they stop worshiping other gods. But what Hezekiah did next must have been really unexpected and really controversial. He broke into pieces the bronze snake Moses made—intentionally. Not by accident. Not “I was carrying it and it fell.” To break bronze takes some effort.
Eliminating pagan idols is one thing, but “that was the snake Moses made!” It was the bronze snake God told Moses to make, the one people looked at to be delivered from their snakebites (Numbers 21).
Hezekiah broke the snake because the people were burning incense to it. They were worshiping a bronze snake. Tools for transformation can become objects of worship. In our sinfulness, we can make an idol of just about anything. In our sinfulness, we tend to make idols of things that are important to us. Thus, a bronze snake that God used to bring healing, held by the leader of God’s people during their liberation from slavery, became an object of worship.
Today is not altogether different. God’s people still struggle with taking tools for transformation and making them objects of worship. Here are three common idols in churches:
1. The Place
Because the Lord does a great work in the hearts of His people when they gather, the places of gathering can move from a tool for transformation to an object of worship. Thus, if a leader mentions “relocation,” the leader is essentially threatening to cut a bronze snake into pieces. We must remind people that the building is not the church, that His people are the church. God does not live in the place where we gather; He lives in the hearts of His people.
2. The Past
Because the Lord worked in amazing ways in the past, the past can become an idol where people long for the past more than they long for the Lord. Being grateful for the past is one thing, and worshiping it is quite another. If “former days” were great, they were only great because of the Lord.
3. The Programs
Because God changed lives through a program or event, people can elevate a program to an unhealthy place. Programs can become ends in themselves and not tools used in a church’s discipleship process. When this happens, they exist as modern-day bronze snakes.
How can leaders be like Hezekiah? How can modern-day bronze snakes be removed?
Leaders must constantly point people to the person of Jesus. Only He is worthy of our worship and only He can transform hearts. When we help people see the greatness of Jesus, idols look less attractive. As we turn our eyes on Jesus and look full in His wonderful face, the things of this world (place, past and programs included) grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.
Leaders must also continually remind people of the purpose of the church. (Yes, I know it is another “p,” but it fits.) A church exists to make disciples. When a church embraces the mission of making disciples, programs are viewed as tools and not as ends in themselves. When making disciples is what a church is all about, the place is rightly seen as merely a place to help make disciples.
Though the Lord instructed the snake to be made, the Lord affirmed its destruction. And of Hezekiah, the Scripture says:
Hezekiah trusted in the Lord God of Israel; not one of the kings of Judah was like him, either before him or after him (2 Kings 18:5).
|Posted on February 5, 2016 at 1:35 PM||comments (2537)|
Don't Forget the Other Half of the Verse!,Bible Study, Christian Living
Don't Forget the Other Half of the Verse!
Most Christians (even non-Christians, for that matter) are familiar with James 4:7: "Resist the devil, and he will flee." We've all heard it somewhere, and it was most likely spoken out of context. Just like the cartoon image of the devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other, this concept is right up there with the non-biblical concept that "God helps those who help themselves."
Both are simply wrong.
How can a scriptural requirement to resist the devil be wrong? Clearly there is no problem with the advice that we should resist the devil. In fact it is very good advice! The problem here is that it is only half of the advice.
Look at all of James 4:7. With both halves attached, we find there is something that must be done before any attempt is made to resist the devil:
“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
The all-important prerequisite James gives before calling believers to resist the devil is to first submit to God. If that verse is not taken in full context, in the order it is written, it will fail to hold any true effective meaning.
Below are some examples of other passages that we tend to cut in half.
Ephesians 6:4: "Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord."
Judges 6:25-26: "Now on the same night the LORD said to him (Gideon), “Take your father’s bull and a second bull seven years old, and pull down the altar of Baal which belongs to your father, and cut down the Asherah that is beside it; and build an altar to the LORD your God on the top of this stronghold in an orderly manner, and take a second bull and offer a burnt offering with the wood of the Asherah which you shall cut down."
Acts 1:8: "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth."
What is the common denominator?
The half we typically forget about tends to be the most important half.
Think about it; Christians tend to be familiar with the parts that require avoiding negative behavior in our own strength. We latch onto this "don't do bad stuff" mentality because it allows us to check the box and feel like we are trying our best...
• Resist the devil...
• Stop being mean to your kids...
• Tear down your idols...
• Talk more about Jesus...
However, the reason we often find ourselves going back to every idol, addiction, bad habit and negative behavior that has haunted and shamed us in the past is because we don't replace it with that which is of God. We become legalistic and proud about what we aren't doing, while quietly struggling along, trying to do the things of God without the power of God.
Which, by definition, can't be done.
Essentially, we have forgotten the most important half of the verse.
We forget the part about leading our family in the instruction and discipline of the Lord, and instead just try really hard not to yell at the kids as often.
We forget the part about submitting to God, and instead just try really hard to resist the devil on our own because that's what good boys and girls are supposed to do, right?
We forget the part about Gideon completely destroying the old altar of idolatry and replacing it with the new one to God, and instead just try really hard to keep that empty altar-shaped hole in our heart empty for as long as is humanly possible, which usually ends up not being very long.
We forget the part about witnessing in the power of the Holy Spirit, and instead just try really hard to proclaim Christ out of our own strength and intellect.
And it leaves us wondering what is going wrong, because we are honestly trying. And honestly failing.
We so often find ourselves missing out because the truth and the strength we need are found in the other half of the verse that tells us to stop trying. The other half of the verse tells us to submit ourselves to God, to tear down every idol and immediately replace them with the discipline and instruction of the Lord, and then watch what happens when we live as witnesses through the power of the Holy Spirit within us.
It is time for believers to stop reading our self-created "glass-half-empty" version of the Bible, with the list of half-verses and well-meaning rules that Christians have been trying really hard to live out, and trading it in for the "my cup runs over" version that places hope, strength and trust in Almighty God above what we can do in our own strength.
As a writer and musician, Jason Soroski strives to communicate in a way that is insightful, meaningful, relevant, and mindful of the small things that we may otherwise overlook in our everyday lives. He effectively taps into his experiences as a worship pastor, classroom teacher, husband, and homeschooling father of five to relate poignant stories from real-life experiences. Jason holds an M.Ed. from Missouri Baptist University, has been featured in various print and web publications, and currently resides in Houston, TX. Read more from Jason at his blog The Way I See It.
|Posted on January 31, 2016 at 2:55 AM||comments (3286)|
There are more things in Heaven and Earth Horatio, then are dreamt of in your philosophy (Shakespeare's Hamlet [1.5.167-8]).
Min. E. Lionel Perry