No beating around the bush and no soft-pedaling. Let me give it to you straight. The sin that makes God cry is being committed daily - not by pagan workers of iniquity, but by multitudes of Christians! It is the sin of doubting God's love for His children.
Three months after Israel left Egypt, they arrived at the base of Mount Sinai and set up camp. Moses climbed that rugged mountain to commune with the Lord. God called to him and said:
"I am going to come to you in the form of a dark cloud so that the people themselves can hear me when I talk to you, and then they will always believe you. Go down and get the people ready for my visit…Sanctify them…
In one way or another, we are all hurting. Everybody is in the same boat. Even the laughing, happy–go–lucky crowd is hurting. They try to hide their hurt by drinking and joking — but it won't go away.
Who hurts? The parents of a prodigal son or daughter. Millions of parents have been deeply wounded by a child who has rejected their counsel. Those loving parents grieve over the deception and delinquency of a child who was once tender and good.
"These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God" (Revelation 14:4-5).
My wife and I were having dinner with a family friend not long ago, a woman we've known for some time. Suddenly, in the middle of our meal, our friend began to voice the kinds of thoughts I've been hearing from Christians all across the country.
She said to us:
Accepting Our High Calling to Share the Joy of the Lord
There are two elements of Jesus’ life that are meant to be part of our lives too. That is, we’re called to be holy and anointed. Some Christians might be intimidated when they hear this. “Sure, I live a moral life, and I do my best to be godly—but holy? And anointed? How could that happen with all my failures?”
Yet here it is, straight from Peter’s pen: “It is written, ‘You shall be holy, for I am holy’” (1 Peter 1:16, ESV).
My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips” (Psalm 89:34). The term “covenant” plays an integral part in the Christian faith. Yet in all my years I have never heard a preacher or teacher adequately describe the significance of “covenant” in a Christian’s life. The Bible itself is divided into two Covenants (or Testaments), Old and New. Throughout the Old Testament, God makes one covenant after another with humankind. What are all these covenants about? More importantly, what do they have to do with us today?
In his letter to the Philippians, Paul opened up his heart and soul to the church. Throughout Chapter 1 the apostle’s spirit overflows with joy and peace. He speaks of abundant rejoicing and urges his readers to bring their requests to God with joy, “in nothing terrified by your adversaries” (Philippians 1:28). Meanwhile, Paul himself rejoiced in “the peace of God, which passeth all understanding” (4:7). And he wrote to the church to do likewise: “My brethren, rejoice in the Lord” (3:1).
Are you finding your temptations stronger, your resistance weaker, your affections for Christ strangely dimming? Are you in a season when God's Word seems uninspiring and your prayer life is weak and anemic? Are you ever afraid you've slowly become lukewarm?
If so, this message is for you. There is hope for believers who are falling into a spiritual lukewarmness. There is a power available to you — and there is a Savior working on your behalf to pluck you from dullness of spirit and bring a revival fire.
When the world seems to be shaking, there will arise a people who know how to maintain their strength in the midst of it all. These are people who draw near to the Lord in times of crisis.
According to Scripture, it won’t matter to these people if the moon and stars fall from the sky, or if the mountains quake and fall into the sea. They will still have faith in the Lord to save them, and they will not have their faith shaken by anything that comes.
In Psalm 31, David introduces a phrase to God’s people: “the secret of thy presence.” David writes:
A dear Christian woman in Lousiana wrote to our ministry: “Last Sunday, our pastor asked for testimonies of what God had been doing during the week. His own five-year-old son stood up and said, ‘I had a dream last night. Jesus told me he was coming soon.’” The Holy Spirit used that child to remind God’s people of a glorious truth.
Sadly, the present generation knows less about the return of Christ than any generation in the past. Jesus’ coming is seldom preached in churches anymore. Indeed, multitudes who call themselves Christians don’t want to hear about the subject. Why?