Sunday, March 25, 2012



Number two of a four part series

Respect for one another is tantamount to a good relationship. Although people have probably said it a number of times about separated and divorced people that they fell out of love, it is my contention that we don’t fall out of love, but we fall out of respect. There are reasons for falling out of love but buried at the root of this is the lack of respect for the other. Granted, woman fall out of respect and men might fall out of love, but there is a respect issue with both. Otherwise, why does the man fall out of love?

When your significant other says that he/she isn’t in love with you any more, look for a respect issue. They have lost respect somewhere along the line. It is up to us, through our conversation, to find the issue and rectify it, or we are heading for divorce court. To have and gain respect, we have to be respect-able. For starters, the big four come to mind.

When my wife told me one day that she didn’t love me anymore and was leaving, I searched my soul for an answer. The last few months of our marriage had been ugly for us, spiritually, financially, emotionally, and physically. I am not proud to say but it was more than I could handle. I was not a good leader at the time and fell into a deep depression. That was more than she could handle and gave me the awful news one morning in the kitchen.

I loved her deeply but the depression was more than I could come out of then. I did finally pull myself together and God healed me of the depression but it was too late for our marriage. I tried for an entire year to win back her heart but could not do so. She had lost respect for me and I could not regain it. Gaining back respect is a long and hard process and to her, I was not worth it.

I can speak from experience brothers and sisters that being respectable in the eyes of your spouse is a key principle. When things are dire and you feel yourself slipping away from God, fight it with everything that you have. I was not strong enough at the time but since then I have developed such closeness to God that it cannot be broken. I will never allow myself to be in that predicament again. It cost me too much the first time.

V12 And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken [Ecclesiastes 4:12].

We will never lose the love that God has for us but there is no doubt a time when He is disappointed in us. Our vertical relationship with God is a key to our horizontal relationships with each other.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Big Four



Truth, respect, submission, and humility are what I like to call, “The Big Four.” Without these four, we cannot hope to live in oneness and harmony with each other or with God. Until we can accept God’s unconditional love for us, live in His truth, respect each other, and submit to one another in a spirit of humbleness, then we are heading for divorce court or a busted up relationship. We'll look at each one of these a little closer in the coming three weeks.

Let’s just cut to the chase, nobody likes a liar [1]. If we want to overcome before the judgment, then we need to be justified in our sayings, to which Romans 3:4 attests. Solidifying ourselves in the truth can only help to transform us into His image. The Lord gave us the Word so we could learn and manifest the truth [2] but sometimes this can present a problem as well.

Sometimes there are differences doctrinally and we argue the truth amongst ourselves. The Bible tells us to give the truth [3], not to argue the truth [4]. Yet, some get very protective of their interpretation of Scripture. However, there are only five essential doctrines to which there are no compromises:

1. The deity of Christ (John 1:1; John 8:58; 1 John 4:2, 3)

2. Salvation by grace (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Galatians 5:4)

3. Resurrection of Christ (1 Corinthians 15:14, 17)

4. Gospel of Christ (1 Corinthians 15:1-4)

5. Monotheism (1 Timothy 2:5)

Everything else is up for discussion and is not a deal breaker in terms of the Kingdom and in the scheme of things.

There is unity [5] in essential doctrine and liberty in non-essential doctrine [6], but we should not let our liberty be a stumbling block for others, for in all things there is charity [7]. The truth starts at the Cross and before we can live in oneness and harmony with each other, we first need to learn from God how to do this [8]. Given what we just learned about essential and non-essential doctrine we can see what the truth is and what the truth may or may not be.

Everybody has their own facts but there is only one truth, Jesus Christ is God, is the son of God, who died for us, was crucified, who saves us by His grace, and who arose from the dead. This is the simple Gospel of Jesus Christ [9]. However, we are to give the truth in a loving manner [10].

It doesn’t matter if you believe in pre, mid, or post tribulation, a Saturday or a Sunday Sabbath, or if you believe in eternal security or not. It doesn’t even matter if you believe in sprinkling or dunking. As long as you believe that Jesus Christ is God, that He was born of a virgin, died on the Cross for our sins, and arose from the dead, then you are my brother or sister-in-the-Lord.

Have a great day brothers and sisters. And to the rest, have a fantastic day as well and may the Lord richly bless each and every one of you.


[1] Romans 3:4

[2] 2 Corinthians 4:2

[3] 2 Corinthians 6:7 and many others too numerous to list.

[4] Could not find a Scripture that told us to argue the truth, and that’s my point.

[5] Romans 15:5-7

[6] Romans 14, 15

[7] 1 Corinthians 13:13

[8] Ecclesiastes 4:12

[9] 1 Corinthians 15:1-4

[10] Ephesians 4:15; 1 John 3:18


Monday, March 12, 2012



The Kingdom of God/heaven is in us―"In Christ." Isn't it strange that Christians today seldom discuss what Jesus talked about the most; the Kingdom of God (or the Kingdom of heaven, they are both the same thing). However, for our purposes, we will refer to it as the Kingdom of God.

The only thing that can transform us spiritually is by "following Christ." However, the action required in the "following" part, requires a clear understanding of the Kingdom of God, which is, acceptance by God’s grace "In Christ." By knowing who we are “In Christ” and living that concept, we will recapture our identity, be free from bondage, and save our marriages and relationships from destruction. Yes, it’s that simple.

Being more than a Sunday Christian allows us to live out our convictions. Our character and actions will bear witness to whether our belief and value system is either a conviction or a preference. They say if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.

Below is a mini-list for researching the Kingdom of God and Kingdom living. Prayerfully, you will find some answers for which you are looking.

Kingdom Living Scripture
• John the Baptist announced the Kingdom in Matthew 3:1, 2
• Jesus later came into Galilee proclaiming it in Mark 1:15
• Much of Christ's teaching dealt with the Kingdom of God in Matt 6:33; Matt 12:28; Matt 19:24; Luke 6:20; John 3:15; Rom 14:17; 1 Cor 4:20; Gal 5:21; Col 4:11 -- the list goes on and on. Luke is loaded as is Matthew and Mark.
• Most all of Jesus' parables pictured the Kingdom in Mark 4:30-33;
• The message of the Kingdom of God was still the message after Christ's resurrection. Acts 1:3
• It was the message of the early Apostles in Acts 8:12; 19:8
• In Matthew 24:14 Jesus makes plain that the Gospel of the Kingdom will be preached to the whole world at the end of the age.

The world today desperately needs the message of the kingdom! We live in a time when wicked spirits and earthly things rule millions of people and overcome them. Unfortunately, it seems that many of these people are Christians.