Showing posts with label Jeremiah. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jeremiah. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Full Disclosure vs. Being Vulnerable in a Healthy Way– Self-Deception Series 33 - Purity 1122

Full Disclosure vs. Being Vulnerable in a Healthy Way– Self-Deception Series 33 - Purity 1122

Purity 1122 08/16/2023 Purity 1122 Pocast

Purity 1122 on YouTube: 

Good morning,

Today’s photo of a mammoth “hump” of rock and sand looming over a dry desert like landscape under blue skies comes to us from Jodi Mussmacher-Osuch who shared this scene from her trip to Palisade Colorado yesterday on social media.  But don’t let the dry-looking grass fool you, Palisade is part of the Grand Junction Metropolitan Statistical area and is known for its wine vineyards and peach orchards and its 182-day growing season and average of 78 percent sunshine help make Palisade the Peach Capital of Colorado.  It may be dry in Palisade, but the farmers apparently know how to utilize their situation to prosper and unlike its Rocky Mountain high neighbors Palisades, only sees 14 inches of snow per year. From someone in upstate New York, who can sometimes expect to see 14 inches fall from the sky in one snowstorm, that doesn’t sound like a bad deal at all.  

Well, It’s Wednesday and I share today’s photo as a visual reminder that we have arrived at “hump day” once again and today I am looking forward to sharing a little bit of my story where the Lord looked at my broken condition and bondages and decided that He could make the best of my bad situation and turn things around to see the fruit of the Spirit grow in my life.   But God is patient, and He wasn’t just going to drag me kicking and screaming into His kingdom and the abundant life He wanted for me.  When the time was right and when I was ready, He showed me the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ that saved my soul, and later showed me that He had even more joy for me to experience by going into recovery and repentance on the path of Chrisitan discipleship.  

So the Celebrate Freedom Growth Group at Starpoint Church meets again tonight and after my 2 week vacation, I am looking forward to seeing some familiar faces and a few new ones as I joyfully received the reports that some newcomers joined our group while I was away.  God is doing something with our group. He is showing others what He has shown me. I’m not sure what the others are seeing of course but I know that when I went into recovery I was shown that my Christianity meant something.  It meant I was part of God’s kingdom and as a member of His royal family it meant I was one of “His people” and I was called to live and act like it.  I was called to follow Jesus and be conformed to His image – to leave my former darkness behind and walk in the Light as He is the Light of the world.   Perhaps most importantly God showed me that my hopes to be like Jesus wasn’t some vain aspiration, my freedom and victory was actually possible.  While I could never have done it on my own, I learned a little bit about what it meant when Jesus said, “All things are possible with God”. I never thought I could give up drugs and alcohol, and frankly I didn’t want to because I thought it was impossible, but God showed me that when I trusted in Him to help me He would be faithful to give me the strength and guidance to overcome and when I decided to walk with Him He showed me that He would never leave me or forsake me.  

So I took that step of faith into Christian recovery back in 2015 and I have been walking and talking with God into progressive freedom ever since and so I have made it my life’s purpose to tell others to put their faith in Jesus and to follow Him with the way they live their lives.  It has been an amazing adventure so far and I look forward to seeing how God will move in the lives of the people who come and keep coming to the Celebrate Freedom Growth Group at Starpoint Church.  

But I’m not going to lie to you. The path to freedom in Christ was never promised to be an easy one and it must be freely chosen and pursued. You have to love the Lord to follow Him and that is something that may not be clear to most Christians and so we try to encourage and instruct them to understand that they must “believe it to receive it” – our victory comes down to faith in God to help us – and that our relationship with God is a love relationship – we do His will because we love Him and don’t want any thing to get in way of the harmony of our relationship with Him.  In the final analysis, we choose God over the world, the flesh, and the devil. If I had to give one final instruction to encourage people in their faith walk, I might echo the words of Jesus in

Matthew 6:33 (NKJV) where He said:
33  But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Speaking of final instructions,  that brings us to our current series on Self-Deception, where we have decided to investigate some of the ways we deceive ourselves by walking through Step 2, Deception Vs. Truth, of the Steps to Freedom in Christ to see what ways we may have been deceived by “the world” and ourselves and in what ways we have wrongly defended ourselves. 

While we have reached the end of this series on Self-Deception by going through all 31  points of the ways we can be deceived by the world, ourselves, and the ways we have wrongly defended ourselves.  I have decided to conclude the series by sharing the closing instructions that immediately follow those three sections on the ways we can be deceived,  

After we have confessed all the ways we have been deceived and prayed to receive God’s forgiveness, Neil Anderson writes: 

“The wrong ways we have employed to shield ourselves from pain and rejection are often deeply ingrained in our lives. You may need additional discipling/counseling To learn how to allow Jesus to be your rock, fortress, deliverer, and refuge (see Psalm 18:1-2).”

Psalm 18:1-2 (NKJV) which says:
1  I will love You, O LORD, my strength.
2  The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

Anderson continues by writing:

“The more you learn how loving, powerful, and protective God is, the more you'll be likely to trust Him.

The more you realize how much God unconditionally loves and accepts you, the more you'll be released to be open, honest, and vulnerable (in a healthy way) before God and others.”

I love how Anderson stresses our relationship with the Lord and how our faith comes down to trusting God and being open, honest, and vulnerable before Him and others. 

Anderson instructs us to be open, honest, and vulnerable with others in a healthy way, mind you.  While God knows everything about us and accepts us completely knowing our whole story, others may not be able to handle the truth and while we are to be open, honest, and vulnerable before the Lord, we should be wise and discerning with what we share with others. 

Some people are not trustworthy, and it would be unwise and unnecessary to tell absolutely everything about us to absolutely everyone.

Even though I pride myself on providing “full disclosure” by speaking the truth in love and being as transparent as I can be, I understand that there are details about my past and present life that are nobody’s business but my own and while God knows about them I will only share the details of my life that I feel will be helpful to others, not cause others undue harm, pain, or embarrassment, and will be received with reverence and respect. 

Of course, I know that when I trust people with the details of my life I run the risk of someone wittingly or unwittingly divulging the things I have said in confidence, but if that happens, I’ll own it and do my best to explain how the things I did before coming to Christ and before I went into recovery were done by a person who no longer exists or who was woefully ignorant of the ways of living according to the word of God, and that while I do my best to follow Jesus, I am still a work in progress.   But I don’t take sin lightly, don’t believe in the need to relapse, and am progressively learning to fully surrender and conform my thoughts and lifestyle to that of a disciple of Jesus Christ. 

So as far as it concerns me, I try to be wise and vulnerable, in a healthy way, with the things I share about my life.  Jesus called us to be wise as serpents and innocent of doves and had his own inner circle of disciples (John, Peter, and James) that were afforded special access to the details of His life because of His trust in them, and we should be wise in the way we grant access to the details of our lives through our relationships. 

Some people won’t be walking with us for long. Some are tares among the wheat. Some are false converts, and the enemy would love to use them to cause strife and division in the body of Christ by openly telling sensitive things told in confidence.  So be wise and discerning in what you tell to whom.  You don’t have to share all the dirty details of your story to tell others how the Lord set you free and even though we want to be open, honest, and vulnerable before others we have to consider others too when we want to be transparent in a healthy way.     

I wrote more than I expected with my comments on Anderson’s final instructions of Step 2 of the Steps to Freedom in Christ.  Can you blame me?  The man’s instructions are based on the word of God and are “gold”.  So rather than pressing ahead and sharing the rest of these final instructions here today, we will share them tomorrow.  So our current series on self-deception will “continue to be concluded” tomorrow featuring Anderson’s comments on the twisting of the concept of faith and truth itself.     


For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple encouragements provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, .

Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The Quick Scripture Reference for Counseling” By John G. Kruis.

( While Bible verses on various topics of Counseling can be found with a quick google search, we encourage you to purchase this resource to support the late author’s work. ( )

This morning’s meditation verse comes from the section on Affliction, Discipline, Chastisement, & Trials.

2 Corinthians 1:8-9 (NIV2011)
8  We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself.
9  Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.

Today’s verse fall under the nineteenth point of our counseling reference guide resource’s section on Affliction, Discipline, Chastisement, & Trials

 19. Paul says that he suffered under great stress so that he might learn to rely on God more.

Today’s verse gives us a picture of a Christian giving “full disclosure” and realizing that his trials had the purpose of causing His faith to grow as His desperate situation caused the Apostle Paul to rely more on God.

When the going gets tough, the Christian relies on God.  

While there is a measure of truth to, English political theorist, Algernon Sidney’s sentiment that “God helps those who help themselves”, that phrase is not a Bible verse.  Although used by Benjamin Franklin in Poor Richard’s Almanack, that phrase is not in scripture.  

While man can do much and is expected to act on his own behalf in following the Lord’s will, scripture indicates that we are to rely on God. I am sharing a link Open’s “100 Bible verses about Rely on God” on the blog today (  in case you need to be reminded that it is the Lord we must trust in.  

From that list of verses I like: 

Jeremiah 17:5-6 (NKJV)
5  Thus says the LORD: "Cursed is the man who trusts in man And makes flesh his strength, Whose heart departs from the LORD.
6  For he shall be like a shrub in the desert, And shall not see when good comes, But shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, In a salt land which is not inhabited.

Thus says the Lord here guys – That’s God telling us this!  Trusting in man or making our flesh our strength is a departure from God and results in experiencing suffering.  

And in today’s verse, Paul was telling it like it is by admitting to his great suffering that caused him to despair of life itself. He thought he was dead, and it sounded like he wanted to die! But he survived, and he realized that suffering caused him to rely on the One who raises the dead, the Lord God Almighty.  


So do what you can to fix problems and help others, but never put your whole trust in your own strength, cunning, or abilities, we are to rely on the Lord and only when we trust and follow Him can we truly see what a good, good Father and mighty God He is.


As always, I invite all to go to where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we continue sharing from  The Holy Spirit By A.W. Pink.

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage you all to purchase A.W. Pink’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available online for $0.99 (

A.W. Pink’s The Holy Spirit

20 - The Spirit Cleansing

The Awful Warning

Our text, then, belongs to the Lord’s own people, who “are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh” (Rom. 8:12); rather are they “debtors” to Christ (who redeemed them) to live for His glory, “debtors” to the Holy Spirit (who regenerated them) to submit themselves to His absolute control. But if an apprehension of their high privilege (to please their Savior) and a sense of their bounded duty (to Him who has brought them from death unto life) fail to move them unto godly living, perhaps an apprehension of their awful danger may influence them thereto: “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die”—die spiritually, die eternally, for “life” and “death” in Romans always signifies far more than natural life and death. Moreover, to restrict “ye shall die” to physical dissolution would be quite pointless, for that experience is shared by sinners and saints alike.

It is to be noted that the Apostle did not say, “If ye have lived after the flesh ye shall die,” for everyone of God’s children did so before He delivered them from the power of darkness and translated them into the kingdom of His dear Son. No, it is, “If ye live after the flesh,” now. It is a continual course, a steady perseverance in the same, which is in view. To “live after the flesh” means to persistently follow the inclinations and solicitations of inward corruption, to be wholly under the dominion of the depravity of fallen human nature. To “live after the flesh” is to be in love with sin, to serve it contentedly, to make self-gratification the trade and business of life. It is by no means limited to the grosser forms of wickedness and crime, but includes as well the refinement, morality, and religiousness of the best of men, who yet give God no real place in their hearts and lives. And the wages of sin is death.

“For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die.” That is a rule to which there is no exception. No matter what your experience or profession, no matter how certain of your conversion or how orthodox your belief: “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting” (Gal. 6:7, 8). O the madness of men in courting eternal death rather than leave their sinful pleasures and live a holy life. O the folly of those who think to reconcile God and sin, who imagine they can please the flesh, and yet be happy in eternity notwithstanding. “How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her” (Rev. 18:7)—so much as the flesh is gratified, so much is the soul endangered. Will you, my reader, for a little temporal satisfaction run the hazard of God’s eternal wrath? Heed this solemn warning, fellow—Christian: God means what He says, “IF ye live after the flesh, ye shall die.”[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

( The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 You Tube Channel:

Email me at to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog ( ),  her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock ( ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (

For those who require the assistance of a Deeper Walk International Prayer Minister to experience healing or your freedom in Christ, I highly recommend Christy Edge’s Life on the Edge Freedom Prayer Ministry. You can schedule a session by going to :     

“The views, opinions, and commentary of this publication are those of the author, M.T. Clark, only, and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of any of the photographers, artists, ministries, or other authors of the other works that may be included in this publication, and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of any entities the author may represent.”

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship

[1] Arthur Walkington Pink, The Holy Spirit (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, n.d.).


Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Instant Liberation in Two Words: “I Quit!” - Purity 824

 Instant Liberation in Two Words: “I Quit!” - Purity 824

Purity 824 08/31/2022  Purity 824 Podcast

Good morning,

Today’s photo a of a the “hump” of a “rainbow in the hollers” comes from a friend who called West Liberty Kentucky home for a spell and shared this photo back on June 3, 2021.  But moss doesn’t grow on a rolling stone and the holler’s appeal didn’t last long and instead of staying put, our friend jettisoned his home in the holler and took to beaches of Florida for a spell and now has set his stakes in a new home in southwest North Carolina!  But that doesn’t mean he is done traveling because I just saw him share scenes from somewhere in Georgia just the other day that may be featured in a future post. 

Well, It’s hump day again, and as we seek to surmount the midpoint of another work week to move on into Labor Day weekend, I think we should all rejoice over the freedom that the Lord gives us to change our situations and the fact that He gives us our self-worth that is not dependent on where we are or what we are doing. Our changing circumstances don’t change who we are in Christ.   

In life we make our best decisions with the information we have at the time.  We may think a home in the hollers, a beach in Florida, or a place somewhere else may satisfy us at the time, only to discover that we want to try something else.  Moving can be an ordeal but I for one can attest to the sheer joy that comes from leaving your past behind and finding peace in a new home.  

Likewise professionally, we can decide to step out and try something new with the hopes of forging a prosperous future only to discover that the deal that seemed too good to be true was too good to be true and that the offers and promises that were made before we committed ourselves quickly changed almost as soon as we did.  

In a teaching on Jesus vs The Culture, Dr. Frank Turek asked if it was ethical for a business to change the conditions of someone’s employment after they were hired after they had committed themselves and turned down other offers. The people gathered for his class unanimously agreed that it was unethical to do that. 

But Turek’s question shows that things like this happen in the world of business, to lure people into filling a job unscrupulous employers will make promises that they have no intention of keeping and will eventually change the rules of the game after they hire someone and figure they now “own them”.   

Unfortunately, many people face this type of treatment and feel that they have no recourse but to stay because they need the money or the benefits or are told that the negative circumstances are only temporary.   

However, the Lord has given us free will and if we walk with Him we can be assured that He will be with us whether we decide to endure in our “raw deal”  or if we choose to utter the two word phrase that leads to instant liberation: I quit!

I think we all know people who have suffered in negative work circumstances at some point in their work histories and we listen to their complaints and laments with compassion but are puzzled at why they continue to stay.  Don’t they know they can quit?

There is no shame in quitting, regardless of reasons, but if we were lied to or if we are being abused or micromanaged, we have the right to set ourselves free.  

Unfortunately, this issue is close to home for me because my wife TammyLyn recently took a chance at a new career only to discover that her employers were dishonest about their expectations of her work hours and the level of authority she would have as the general  manager of their restaurant.

They expected her to turn Hell’s kitchen into heaven but didn’t give her the power to do it as they almost immediately undermined her authority, arbitrarily changed policies, gave preferential treatment to certain employees, allowed a hostile work environment to fester, made insulting abusive personal comments to employees, allowed rank insubordination to go without consequence, and tried to make her personally responsible for each and every aspect of the business, even when she wasn’t there! 

My wife was the general manager for less than a month and last night I fully supported her decision to resign immediately.  

I, of course, sought to support my wife in her new venture by becoming a delivery driver for the restaurant. I figured if she was there that was where I wanted to be.  But she isn’t there anymore, so I quit too!

No matter how bad things get in life we have the option of quitting. He have the option of leaving.  If we have been lied to, or abused, or disrespected and hurt,  the Lord doesn’t necessarily want us to stay in that.  

Christ came to give us life and life more abundantly and if people are making our lives hell on earth we can shake the dust off our feet and leave.  

Frank Turek’s point in asking that question about a business changing the terms of a contract after someone was hired was to ask about the changes in personal relationships: in marriages.  That if someone promises to love, honor and obey someone for life and abuses the promises of the relationship, and the abuse continues or the commitment is betrayed, we can try to work on the problems with counseling but if the other party refuses to repent, we can leave.  Ask me how I know.    

When we decide to follow the Lord with our lives, we make the decision to live in righteousness and the world may not always like that.  People will hate us for it or they may see our Christian character as something they can use for their own purposes.   

While we are to love our enemies and to endure through suffering at times, we are not expected to propagate or allow someone else’s sin to continue unchecked or without consequence.  If you lie to me or are sinning against me, I can forgive you, but it doesn’t mean I have to stay in relationship with you.  

So if that’s you, quit. Walk away.  Forgive them for they know not what they do, but shake the dust off your feet and surrender them to the Lord, as He says you are worthy of love, dignity, and respect, and no matter what the Lord will be with you where ever you go. 

So keep walking and talking with God.  When we trust the wrong people or suffer abuse, He will help us to recover and to find a new place where we will be provided for and where we can find our purpose in Him.  



Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.

This morning’s meditation verse is:

Jeremiah 29:12-13 (NKJV)
12  Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.
13  And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Today’s verses encourage us to call upon the Lord, to pray, and to seek the Lord with the assurance that He will hear us and we will find Him.  

In life we can learn from our mistakes. When things go south we can really beat ourselves up for the mistakes we make.  But the Lord is with us and the book of Jerimiah is a rough portion of scripture in which the prophet delivers searing messages to the nation of Israel about impending judgement that will come because of their disobedience.  But even in this book of the Bible where there is so much “bad news” ,  the Lord reminds the faithful that even in their struggles that He is still with them and that His strength and guidance can still be found when they call upon Him, pray to Him and seek Him.  

So maybe things have gone wrong.  Things didn’t work out the way we hoped.  

So what do we do now that our dreams have gone up in smoke? 

We do what we always to as followers of Christ.  Just like Jesus, we go to the Father, We pray and we gather strength and wisdom from Him, knowing that He is the one who defines us and He is the one who determines our worth.  No matter what we do or how we may fail or suffer, God has accepted us as His children because of our faith in Jesus and He is with us.  

So call on the Lord, pray to Him, and seek your will for your life. He hears you and He will help you to find Him when you search for Him with all your heart.



As always, I invite all to go to where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we continue sharing from Clinton E. Arnold’s “Powers of Darkness”

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase Clinton Arnold’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available on many websites for less than $20.00.

Reasserting the Pauline Emphasis

I am thus hesitant to use the Pauline references to the “principalities and powers” as the fundamental basis for developing a theology of society. On the one hand, a different foundation to social ethics is needed than that which is provided by those who take a structural interpretation of the powers. On the other hand, I believe it is essential to take the principalities and powers into careful consideration when discussing social evil. Robert Webber is correct when he notes, “A theology of society needs to deal with the problem of the demonic.”

There is no doubt Paul envisioned the work of evil spirits to extend beyond their hostile influence on individuals and the church. In Paul’s letters, however, the emphasis is clearly on their malevolent activity in preventing people from becoming Christians and hindering their growth in Christian virtue. The major issue of concern for Paul, therefore, is not so much the relevance of the powers with regard to social justice, but their implications on salvation history and Christian behavior.

In Paul’s eyes the powers unleash their greatest hostility when they hinder the proclamation of the gospel. They use the flesh and, indeed, the structures of the world to blind people from discovering the truth about God’s redemptive work in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Paul’s concept of ministry included no injunction for Christians to work toward reforming the social or political order. As E. Earle Ellis explains it, “As a reality of the resurrection age Christian ministry has for Paul an evangelical, Christ-imparting relationship to the community of the dying.” The proclamation of the gospel takes on decisive importance because it has other-worldly, eternal implications. Those who affirm faith in Christ are rescued from the deadly clutches of Satan’s kingdom and delivered from the community of Adam, which is moving toward its death.

This consideration does not mean that Christians are released from any obligation to society at large. Second to Jesus’ command to love God with full devotion is his command to love our neighbors. Paul reiterated this command when he called Christians to love their neighbors (Rom 13:8–10) and to do good to all people (Gal 6:10).

The Influence of the Powers on the World

The question we now ask is specifically how do the powers influence the world system with its manifold structures? I suggest two ways of describing the evil work of the powers on the social order.

First, it is essential to return to Paul’s emphasis on the direct work of the powers in the lives of individuals. According to Paul, spiritual warfare involves direct demonic enticement to individuals to violate God’s standards of holiness and act in ways contrary to his revealed will. Extrapolating from this explicit principle of operation to a larger scale, we must remember that people control governments, corporations, media and various other structures of our existence. If the powers of darkness can gain significant influence over the lives of key people, through them they can create oppressive dictatorships, evil drug rings, exploitative multinational corporations and all kinds of horrific, destructive mechanisms bent on destruction and terror.

The powers are not merely “up there” in the heavens waging war among themselves. They are here, very close to us, trying to influence our affections and our decisions.

Paul’s Jewish predecessors and contemporaries thought in these terms. For example, the first-century A.D. section of a Jewish document, entitled Ascension of Isaiah, reflects on why one of the kings of Judah was able to lead the whole city into apostasy:

And Manasseh abandoned the service of the Lord of his father [Hezekiah], and he served Satan and his angels, and his powers.… And he rejoiced over Jerusalem because of Manasseh, and he strengthened him in causing apostasy, and in the iniquity which was disseminated in Jerusalem. And sorcery and magic, augury and divination, fornication and adultery, and the persecution of the righteous increased through Manasseh. (Ascension of Isaiah 2:2–5)

In this text it is clear that the powers of darkness are viewed as independent agents who worked directly on the leader of a country to create a regime of terror and evil. Many similar references could be cited, but this is adequate to illustrate the simple concept of an evil spirit working through an individual who wields significant civil authority. The same principle could be applied to many different spheres and social/political structures.

In the twentieth century we have witnessed the extensive repression and exploitation that corrupt rulers can wield over millions of people. Mention the names of Adolf Hitler, Nicolae Ceausescu, Idi Amin, Manuel Noriega and Saddam Hussein, and one easily sees images of untold atrocities. Certainly, Satan and his forces make people of such power the objects of particular attack because of their political authority. Could it be more than coincidental that reports of these leaders’ involvement in the occult so often surface after they have fallen from power? Certainly, Satan has only to exploit the desires of their depraved natures to bring about his destructive aims. More direct Satanic influence, however, can sometimes be observed.

Second, I suggest that Paul’s concepts of “world” (kosmos) and “this age” (aiōn) correspond most closely with what many modern interpreters describe as structural evil. Paul described unredeemed humanity as trapped in a pattern of transgression and sin against God because “the age (aiōn) of this world (kosmos)” so heavily influences them (Eph 2:2). Becoming a Christian involves being crucified to the world (Gal 6:14) and being rescued from the present evil age (Gal 1:4). When Paul spoke of “the world” in a moral sense, he was thinking of the totality of people, social systems, values and traditions in terms of its opposition to God and his redemptive purposes. The structures of our existence, to a large extent, represent the composite result of human ideas, affections and activity. Both people and their ideas can have an evil bent. Yet they are also capable of redemption and purification. In his insightful book on social ethics Stephen Mott draws the correct distinction between the powers and the world. He notes, “The kosmos, a more pervasive theme in the New Testament than the powers, represents the social structuring of evil without necessitating recourse to the symbolism of supernatural personages.”28 He draws attention to the fact that the principle of sin has a serious impact on our social order: “If sin is as pervasive as we say that it is, … then it will affect not only our personal motivations, decisions, and acts, but also our social life. It will powerfully influence our customs, traditions, thinking, and institutions. It will pervert our kosmos.”

Not only does sin have a degenerative effect on the social order, but so also do the powers of darkness. The powers exert their influence to corrupt the various social orders of the world as a further means of drawing humanity away from God. Working through people, the powers can pollute a society’s traditions and values. They can influence authors, television producers, political thinkers and analysts, pastors, university professors, composers, artists, screenplay writers, economic policy makers, architects of defense strategies and journalists. Through a unified networking influence, it is not difficult to imagine how the powers can influence the direction of an entire culture. In one decade something may be considered morally outrageous and in the next morally acceptable through a changed public opinion.

The powers themselves, however, are not the structures. Although the powers do their best to influence the structures, evil still resides in the structures only insofar as the people involved are evil. Just as a glove has no ability on its own to carry out a task, ideologies, economic systems and the like have no power apart from the people who subscribe to them and enforce them. A tradition ceases to be a tradition when people no longer pass it on.

It is with good reason that Paul calls Satan “the god of this age (aiōn)” who “has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel” (2 Cor 4:4). We could legitimately say “Satan is the god of many of the structures that order our existence.” Through coordinating the activity of his innumerable powers of darkness, Satan attempts to permeate every aspect of life in his indefatigable attempts to oppose God and his kingdom. The work of the evil one moves far beyond the simple notion of tempting an individual to sin. Satan appears to have a well-organized strategy. He aims strongly at the people with power and influence. The moral lapse of one pastor can send one church reeling. Inciting the moral lapse of numerous prominent ministers devastates Christians all over the country and makes society perceive the fragrant aroma of the gospel as a stench to be avoided.

The powers do indeed influence society and its institutions. We must be careful not to assume, however, that the demonic has polluted all institutions, social structures, traditions and philosophies. As Stephen Mott points out, there is a battle for the control of God’s creation. Institutions are integral to human life. “Institutions function both to enslave and to liberate human existence. The powers are always present along with enslavement and death in small or large degree; but their real existence is behind the scenes in a system of hostile values vying for control of the life of the world.”

According to Paul, God calls Christians to be rescuing agents. The evil-infected institutions of this present age have trapped people, who are blinded from seeing Christ’s redeeming love. Since the institutions of this world (kosmos) and the structures of the present age (aiōn) are destined to perish, our highest priority is to help people find ultimate freedom from the deadly constraints and terror of the present age and experience the untold blessings of the age to come, and to be liberated from the world and its hellish prince and be inundated with the love, joy and peace of God’s kingdom.

By no means is this an encouragement for Christians to escape completely from the present world and withdraw from involvement in the social order and the structures of our existence. Jesus called us to be salt and light, to show the same loving compassion for our neighbors that led him to lay down his life for the lost. God demands that Christians engage in social action based on their love for humanity, their call to be salt and light, and their responsibility to be careful stewards of the creation.

Christians still live in the present evil age—in fact, they live in two ages. The kingdom of God and the blessings of the age to come have broken into the present age in the Lord Jesus Christ. The Spirit and the gifts, the grace of God and the power of the age to come are bestowed on us through relationship with the Lord Jesus. We are called to carry on the redemptive mission that Christ called us to and that Paul modelled for us by his own life and ministry. We are called to demonstrate Christ’s love.[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

( The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 You Tube Channel:

Email me at to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock ( ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship

[1] Clinton E. Arnold, Powers of Darkness: Principalities & Powers in Paul’s Letters (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic: An Imprint of InterVarsity Press, 1992), 201–205.


Monday, December 27, 2021

Legislating Immortality – Fearful New World – Purity 612

Legislating Immortality – Fearful New World  – Purity 612

Purity 612 12/27/2021  Purity 612 Podcast

Good morning,

Today’s photo of the sun blazing through an ice covered forest comes to us from yours truly as I took a canine friend for a walk down Waite Road in Easton NY yesterday afternoon and had the presence of mind to bring my phone to capture some scenes along the way on what was a sunny and pleasant Boxing Day.

It's Monday again. So it’s back to life and back to reality for most of us as the Christmas holiday is over and it’s time to make the donuts again as we return to work today.  For many of us that will mean having to secure our face coverings as we will be subtly forced to comply with mask mandates that are designed to stop the spread of the flu and common cold… I mean the deadly viruses Covid-19, and its hosts of variants. I know there was a Delta variant that the news tried to terrify us with a few months ago and now we apparently on Omnicron. 

Assuming Covid 19 was Alpha, I guess Beta, and Gamma must have been pretty lame and likewise Epsilon, Zeta, Eta, Theta, Iota, Kappa, Mu, Nu and Xi  must have been relatively harmless as they didn’t make the news.  To be honest, I don’t watch the news so they could have.  I would apologize for my ignorance in regards to current events but there doesn’t seem to be a very large concern with the truth in general so I choose to not subscribe to a media stream that may knowingly or unknowingly be propagating a fraud or a false narrative.   

The idea of mandatory vaccines that don’t prevent the disease they are designed to prevent and the wearing of masks that likewise will not prevent the spread of the same disease shows us that we are not content with the truth as we are with feeding the culture of fear as the objects of concern shift to a new supposed menace every few weeks to keep the measures of control in place and to keep a steady stream of income into the pockets of the pharmaceutical companies and the industries that profit on keeping the pandemic alive. 

With the abandonment of Afghanistan the war on global terrorism was lost or is over, instead those in charge are declaring a war on disease as cold and flu season has begun and the response is to reinstitute mask mandates and to demand that a round of “vaccine booster” shots be given.  

New Hampshire’s state motto is “live free or die” and I think I choose that option rather than to get a “booster” of a shot with questionable ingredients and limited effectiveness.  And as for the masks, unless you are in a Hazmat suit we are all vulnerable to  the spread of diseases. 

So I will take every opportunity to gain permission to remove my mask, as the vast majority of us – either don’t believe the hype, feel secure with our own immunity systems, or know that there is a sovereign God who chooses when each one of us will be called into eternity in spite our personal efforts to stay alive at all costs.  

The inconsistencies of our attitudes regarding society’s concerns over the sanctity of life and compassion highlight the madness of our age and the heights of hypocrisy that would have even the most carnal of sinners in a Christian house of prayer balk and point a retaliatory finger of accusation towards all the hypocrites outside of the church.

The lifestyles and attitudes that are perverse and contribute to the spread STD’s, the continuation of addiction, and encourage the termination of life in the womb as well as the elderly are “deemed” an expression of our liberty and are beyond reproach.  But the decision to refuse medical treatments and forced codes of dress, because that’s all it is, are villainized as ignorant, uncompassionate, and dangerous. 

The powers that be have stirred the pot of fear and enough of the populace is scarred enough to agree with just about anything to avoid death, or chastisement.    

I fear the opinion of God more men and I know my life is secured in Christ so I don’t fear death.  My assurance is as absolute as you can get. I know God has purposes for us that go beyond eternity and I know that God will be faithful to those who put their faith in His Son.

We don’t know when we are going to die but those who put their faith in Jesus don’t have to worry about a disease or some other sudden calamity that will usher us into eternity.  The grim reaper isn’t so grim for the Christian.  We have the assurance of everlasting life. 

When Covid-19 dropped in 2020 and the uncertainty and fear was at its zenith, essential workers had to make the decision to stay at home with the masses or to just go on and live. In the early days, there was no PPE to be found and as we know, the vast majority of it is less than 100% effective, proving that the proliferation of a “hope so” faith, that something was better than nothing, would be the soup du jour for all of 2020. And that dish of “hope so faith” that was more superstition than science is still being served up and forced fed to us in 2021.  Essential workers were, and still are at risk and vast majority of them lived and still live.  

But a new season for the flu is upon us and we now supposedly can track every new variant of disease and will demand that people keep their “hope so faith” alive, creating new fear evangelists that push a new “booster gospel” as the original vaccines weren’t the scientific messiah that we were hoping for.  

Don’t get me wrong.  I don’t want anyone to get sick and die.  Life is precious and we should take measures to protect it and let it thrive by making good choices.  

But regardless of boosters, your disinfectants, and your governmental pressures to comply, death will not be stopped.

Death is God’s means for taking people into eternity.  No one dies early according the God’s timetable.  Regardless of what the coroner puts down as the cause of death, the ultimate truth is that God reclaimed the life that he created and the only hope for our lives is to make peace with the God who made us.  

We can’t prevent physical death. But we can experience a thriving life of peace, love, and joy will on earth and prevent spiritual death by putting our faith in Jesus Christ.  

I would love to put laws in effect to make Christianity the state religion and have everyone pledge allegiance and their souls to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.  But God doesn’t want forced love and obedience.  He invites us all to choose life and life everlasting through faith in Jesus Christ but that is an invitation that we all must individually choose to accept and reject.

You can’t legislate immortality. But I can “hope so” that more people will seek the Lord and find life everlasting in Jesus and have the assurance of a “know so” faith in the One sent to save us.      

So as we go towards the end of this year, I encourage us to be compassionate with one another and obey the mandates, when necessary.

As much as our freedom is being restricted we still have the freedom to speak and instead of proliferating the “hope so” gospel of masks and vaccines, let’s remind people of the “know so” faith and assurance of life everlasting that comes through the gospel of Jesus Christ and the kingdom of God.   

If we are living separated from God, we really should expect his protection.

The harsh lesson of life that the world teaches us is that we will all die one day and nothing will prevent that. 

But God tells us of life beyond this world, and His word repeatedly tells us that He is sovereign and that we are to not fear. 

So fight power of fear and take responsibility for the life you have.  Putting your trust in man and science is a “hope so” faith that offers nothing but a steady stream of fear and panic. 

Putting your faith in Jesus Christ gives you the assurance of eternal life and the fruit of the Spirit of love, joy, peace, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, patience, and self-control . 

So as you head out for work today put on the protection that will save you: faith in Jesus Christ. This world needs to know that God is real and cares about us. This world needs the hope of the light that outshines the darkness and the fear. This world needs Jesus and it needs someone to deliver the message of His truth.  

So keep walking and talking with God. Walk in the Spirit of peace and love and assure those who are afraid that there is safety in Christ alone.  

Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.

This morning’s meditation verse is:

Jeremiah 31:35 (NLT2)
35  It is the LORD who provides the sun to light the day and the moon and stars to light the night, and who stirs the sea into roaring waves. His name is the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, and this is what he says:

Today’s verse is as provided by “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men” as an answer for the contemplation for “When you wish you could see Jesus at work in the world today”.

The idea from the authors of The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men is that “Jesus’ work in the world today is evidenced by the continuous miracle of God’s creation.  God provides the sun to light the day and the moon and stars to light the night every day, and He also is the one who stirs the seas. 

In my short stint as teacher in jail ministry, I developed a quick apologetic for the existence of God in which I presented the three evidence for God as:

1.    God’s creation – Existence itself points to the God who made all things.

2.    Our Consciences – God wrote His law upon our hearts – we all know when we have done wrong

3.    Transformed Lives – Some people who have made Jesus their Lord and Savior were one way before coming to Christ and afterwards were set free of the former lives that were defined by sin.  Their changed lives are evidence of His power and His reality. 

So the evidence for God is all around us.  And the really great news about that is we as Christians are a part of that evidence and we get to present ourselves to the unbelieving world to prove that God is real and active in this world.  

Yes, we can point to the rising sun each day as proof that God is at work in the world today but if we are growing in our relationship with God, we can also point to ourselves and reflect on the work that He has done and is continuing to do in us.

So open your eyes to see the goodness of God and Him actively working but also know that your contemplation of Him and the things of God are evidence that He is already working in you.

As always, I invite all to go to where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk. 


Today we continue to share from Dr. Neil Anderson’s . “Restored: Experience Life with Jesus”. Today, we begin sharing from Chapter 1.    


As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase Dr. Neil Anderson’s books for your own private study and to support his work.



We have learned from history that most people haven’t learned much from history. Those who don’t learn are doomed to repeat the same failures over and over again. Those who have learned the truth from their forefathers know that history is His-story of unfolding grace and love for all humanity. In order to understand what His plan is for you, we need to start at the beginning of human history.


“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth,”5 are the first words in the Bible. God is a Spirit and is infinite, eternal, and unchangeable in His wisdom, power and holiness. He existed when the physical world was just an idea. There was a beginning in time when He  created all physical matter and all living creatures. Then God created Adam in His image, and together with Eve they were to rule over the birds of the sky, the beasts of the field, and the fish of the sea.6 They had dominion over the rest of creation and were to be fruitful in order to multiply and fill the earth. They were physically alive, which means their souls were in union with their bodies. They were spiritually alive; therefore their souls were in union with God. Because they were created in the image of God, they could think, feel, and make choices, unlike all the other creatures that are physically alive, which function by divine instinct.

Adam and Eve were safe, secure, and significant. They had a sense of belonging to God and to each other. They were naked and unashamed because they had nothing to hide and therefore no need to cover up. Adam and Eve were welcomed to eat from the Tree of Life and live forever by remaining in union with God.

Prior to the creation of humanity, a magnificent angel named Lucifer  rebelled against the Creator God and fell from heaven, taking a third of the angels with him. Lucifer means light bearer, but he no longer reflected the glory of God. He became Satan, or the devil, and ruled over his brood of fallen angels, known in the Bible as demons. Jealous for the significant position Adam and Eve were given, Satan tempted Eve to eat the forbidden fruit. She in turn persuaded Adam to do so, and together they sinned by rebelling against God.


The consequences were immediate. Adam and Eve died spiritually. Sin had separated them from God. Their souls were no longer in union with their Heavenly Father. They remained physically alive, but physical death would be a consequence of their sin as well.

Adam and Eve were left to make a name for themselves and to find their purpose and meaning in life independent of their Heavenly Father. They had to rely on their own strength and resources because the life of God was no longer within them. They were like cars without gas and struggled to find purpose and meaning in life in their natural state, which is still true to this day for those who don’t have a relationship with God.

Every car has a battery that provides a spark of life, so the natural person tries to find their purpose in the beauty of the car, or the comfort of the seats, or the sound of the stereo, or the lights, or the noise of the horn, but that is not what the car was created for. The purpose of automobiles is to supply transportation. Without gas they may look, sound, smell, and feel good, but they cannot fulfill their purpose for which they were created, and neither can we unless we have the life of Christ within us.

As a consequence of the fall, every natural descendant of Adam and Eve is born physically alive, but spiritually dead.7 In addition, the whole world was affected by their rebellion, and all creation is groaning and looking forward to a day of redemption.8 That day is coming because God immediately cursed the devil and promised that a descendent of Eve would bring forth a Savior that would crush the head of Satan.9

God’s plan was to first show all humanity their need for a Savior. He revealed our need by instituting a sacrificial system to show us that somebody had to pay the penalty for our sins, and through Moses God gave us a moral law to govern our behavior. However, no animal sacrifice could give us spiritual life, and nobody could live according to the law. So He sent prophets encouraging His people to live righteously according to the laws of God. These prophets also revealed God’s word to us and recorded the history of God’s redemptive plan. There are 39 books in the Old Testament that record the history of creation and the fall of Adam and Eve. They reveal humanity’s futile attempts to find purpose and meaning in life and live independently of God.

God called Abraham out of the Land of Ur, which is the land of present day Iraq, and into the promised land of Israel. With Abraham, God made an unconditional covenant, promising that through him and his descendants all the nations of the earth would be blessed. The Messiah would come from one of His descendants. Through the prophet Moses, God made a conditional covenant of law, promising to bless those who kept it, but none could. For centuries God’s chosen people tried unsuccessfully to live under the law, which proved to be a taskmaster that was intended by God to lead us to Christ,10 the promised Messiah.


When it looked like there was no hope for humanity, and when the time was just right, God sent Jesus His Son. Jesus was supernaturally born of the Virgin Mary and, like Adam, was born both physically and spiritually alive. Jesus is the pre-existent Word of God who became flesh and dwelt amongst us. Jesus is co-equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit, and together they make up the One true God. While on this earth Jesus remained fully God, but He was also fully human. No person can become God, but God can and did manifest Himself in human form. Jesus came for three primary reasons.

First, He came to give us an example to follow in His steps. Jesus showed us how a spiritually alive person could live a righteous life. He did so by demonstrating a life totally dependent upon His Heavenly Father.11 All temptation is an attempt to get us to live our lives independently of God. Jesus was tempted in all ways, but unlike Adam, He never sinned. His sinless perfection was what made Jesus the only possible sacrifice for our sins. No other animal or human sacrifice could accomplish that.

Sin had separated all humanity from God, and the wages of sin is death.12 So Jesus went to the cross to die for our sins in order that we may be forgiven. According to the Old Testament Law, there is no forgiveness without the shedding of blood.13  In dying and shedding His blood, Jesus removed the enmity that existed between God and all humanity. “He [God the Father] made Him [Jesus] who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God.”14 However, knowing that our sins are forgiven is not enough.

Second, Jesus came not only to die on the cross for  our sins, but also to be resurrected in order that we may  have new eternal, i.e. spiritual, life in Christ. That means  our souls are again in union with God. What Adam and `Eve lost in the fall was life, and what Jesus came to give  us was life.15 “Jesus is the bread of life.”16 He is “the way, the truth and the life.”17 He is the only path back to God. “And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.18 “Jesus is the truth and if you know the truth, the truth will set you free.”19 Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live [spiritually] even if he dies [physically], and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die [spiritually]. 20


---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------


Join our “Victory over the Darkness” or “The Bondage Breaker” series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

( The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and 

Email me at to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.


Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship