A Sermon to Remember

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Mars Hill

A Sermon to Remember

Our journey to Athens Greece is one of the most memorable places we have ever traveled.  Perched high is MARS HILL; THE AREOPAGUS.  It overlooks this vivacious metropolis.  We were in awe of the very realization of the distinct historical ground that we stood upon. Here we were greatly humbled. Here we together praised, thanked and worshipped GOD for HIS marvelous creation.  Right in the midst of a plethora of people from all over the world.

Mars Hill is in Athens Greece.  It is here you will find the seat of the Ancient Athenian Court.  Today there are significant remnants of it that still remain.  It is currently being refurbished and fortified to preserve its historical relevancy.   Here is where most of the religious problems as well as crimes were judged in the New Testament Era. 

Two of the major leading schools of thought were that of the Epicureans and the Stoics.   They believed that there were many gods…  They in their spiritual blindness and ignorance worshipped idols.  They were both thought to be in possession of some of the first and foremost intelligent Greek philosophies of this era.  They differed in their beliefs somewhat. However; They both thought agreed and perceived that the Apostle Paul was a babbler.   They thought Paul to be strange because he preached to them about JESUS CHRIST and the RESURRECTION.

The Apostle Paul in turn thought them to be too superstitious. He had absolutely no doubt as to who GOD was.  He was led by the Spirit of God to give them the WORD! To enlighten them to the one and only true GOD he served, worshipped and lived for.

Here in the Book of Acts is a marvelous unforgettable sermon preached by the Apostle Paul that was proclaimed and spoken in order to bring attention to “The UNKNOWN GOD” they ignorantly spoke of.  The God whom they did not fully comprehend.  Yes, they referred to HIM, but they did not know that HE IS THE OMNIPOTENT ALMIGHTY HOLY GOD!  

It is emphatically clear here on Mars Hill the Apostle Paul undeniably speaks the profound life altering philosophical TRUTH!  One must take time to digest and embrace the majestic infallible Word that is revealed here.  

GOD does not live in Temples made by human hands.  Nor should we serve Him as though He needed anything.   IN FACT, IT IS ALL OF US WHO NEED HIM!

May we continue to meditate and ponder upon these enlightening passages of GOD’S infallible WORD! This is what Paul pronounces and brilliantly decrees and preaches to them.

THE APOSTLE PAUL ON MARS HILL; THE AREOPAGUS

“Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars Hill, and said. Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.

For as I passed by and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship HIM I declare unto you,

GOD that made the world and all the things therein, seeing that HE is LORD of Heaven and earth, dwelleth not in Temples made by hands;

Neither is worshipped with men’s (women’s) hands as though HE needed anything, seeing HE giveth to all life, and breath and all things:

And hath made of one blood all nations of men (women) for to dwell on the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;

That they should seek the LORD, if haply they might feel after Him, and find Him, though HE be not far from any of us;

For it is in HIM we live and move and have our being; as certain also our own poets have said. For we are also HIS offspring

Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of GOD, we ought to not think that the GODHEAD is like gold, or silver, or stone, or graven art, and man’s device.  And the times of his ignorance GOD WINKED AT, BUT NOW COMMANDETH ALL Men (Women) EVERYWHERE TO REPENT…”

Acts 17

Here in this PROFOUND MESSAGE it is clear that GOD does not need any of us. Nor does HE need anything from us.   For it is HE that has given us all things including life and breath.  We all; men, women, boys or girls of every nation on the earth have one blood.   We ALL NEED THE LORD!  Each and every one of us are accountable to HIM!

WE ALL ARE TO SEEK THE LORD DAILY

The beauty of GOD’S WORD is it is living quick powerful and it IS THE TRUTH!  It is important to know GOD and HIS WORD for yourself.  GOD IS OUR MAKER & CREATOR!   Be ye always ready to give an answer for the hope that lies within you.   “Study to shew thyself approved unto GOD, a workman that needed NOT be ashamed, rightly dividing the WORD of TRUTH…  II Timothy 2

If you really want to be BLESSED; spend some quality time with the Lord in His Word! Being blessed really goes far beyond the material blessings… BLESSED BE THE GOD & FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, WHO HATH BLESSED US WITH ALL SPIRITUAL BLESSINGS IN HEAVENLY PLACES IN CHRIST.” Ephesians 6 God continuously disburses His blessings as He sees fit or deems appropriate.

Wherever we are we can call upon the Lord in prayer 24/7. “Praying without ceasing” is a state of mind. How about denying yourself some time in the world… And set aside some time to listen intently to the Lord as He speaks to your heart in His Word. Allow Him to grow you in His grace, wisdom & understanding. Truly; HE CAN SET YOU FRE! Learn how to “BE STILL & KNOW!”

Today in this 21st century GOD IS SPEAKING VOCIFEROUSLY to HIS CHURCH, this world and all men, women boys and girls all around the world in many ways.   HIS MESSAGE IS STILL:  REPENT!!!

See what is happening all around us!

The plague and pestilence that has persisted throughout the world continues to take its casualties.   Each day the numbers escalate.  Across the globe.  “THIS Coronavirus pandemic DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE!”   The political divisions throughout the world continues to persist as well. The in-climate weather irregularities persist. The tension between the governing political parties at times have been somewhat disturbing. An uprising of racial discrimination continues to resurface. Nothing is new under the sun. 

GOD is never far from any of us. FOR HE IS OMNIPRESENT!  There is absolutely nothing that He is not aware of past, present or future.  Remember; Each day is a day to grow in His grace, wisdom and understanding.  As we actually embrace HIS WORD and implement it within our daily lives the FRUIT of HIS SPIRIT manifests and multiplies within us. We CAN and MUST STAND upon HIS WORD!  HOLY FATHER, WE THANK & PRAISE YOU AS YOU POUR OUT YOUR HOLY SPIRIT UPON US LORD GOD!

There is much going on in, around and about this world Christ Jesus spoke into existence.  Many are bypassing and overlooking GOD’S WORD and embracing the ways of the world.  Truly the Lord knows; Many of the ways of the world have also nested themselves in the midst of GOD’S CHURCH! LORD HAVE MERCY!    

Nothing is no longer sacred to many…  You can expect some of everything…  The WORD of GOD is being fulfilled.  No doubt the “Perilous Days” are upon us.  As believers we are to daily live as though we are really expecting CHRIST JESUS to return. 

This Message on Mars Hills reminds us of the importance of knowing GOD for ourselves.   This was true then, Now and will be so throughout eternity.

GOD Speaks to HIS CHURCH in Revelation

In Revelation GOD speaks to HIS CHURCH about what is happening and what is to COME! In all of the (7) seven Churches there was a need for improvement. The Church is the Bride of Christ! Each of them was told; “He that hath an ear, let Him hear what the SPIRIT saith unto the Churches.”  Revelation 1,2 & 3

“I JESUS have sent my Angel to testify unto you these things in the Churches, I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.  And the SPIRIT and the BRIDE say, COME. And let HIM that heareth say, COME.  And whosoever will let His/her take the water of life freely…” Revelation 22  

GOD is a just GOD! We can be sure at His appointed time He will bring to light what has been done in the dark.  He will right every wrong…

BECAUSE HE HATH APPOINTED A DAY, IN WHICH HE WILL JUDGE THE world in RIGHTEOUSNESS by that MAN whom HE hath ordained: whereof He hath given assurance unto all men/women that HE has raised HIM from the dead…”  Acts 17 

We can live and be confident every day knowing that in GOD’S time He will deal with everyone and everything justly.

“AND IT SHALL COME TO PASS IN THE LAST DAYS, SAITH THE GOD, I WILL POUR OUT MY SPIRIT; UPON ALL FLESH; AND YOUR SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS SHALL PROPHESY, AND OUR YOUNG MEN SHALL SEE VISIONS, AND YOUR OLD MEN SHALL DREAM DREAMS; 

AND ON MY SERVANTS AND MY HANDMAIDENS I WILL POUR OUT IN THOSE DAYS OF MY SPIRIT, AND THEY SHALL PROPHESY.  AND I WILL SHOW WONDERS IN HEAVEN ABOVE, AND SIGNS IN THE EARTH BENEATH, BLOOD AND FIRE AND VAPOR AND SMOKE.

THE SUN SHALL BE TURNED INTO DARKNESS, AND THE MOON INTO BLOOD, BEFORE THAT GREAT NOTABLE DAY OF   THE LORD COME; AND IT SHALL COME TO PASS THAT WHOSOEVER SHALL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED.”  Acts 2

So, let us not take time for granted. Let us live each day expecting our Lord Jesus Christ to return. For without notice; “in a twinkling of an eye” HE IS coming back for HIS CHURCH without spot or wrinkle.

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Dressing up for Prom and dressing down for Worship Part 1

Dressing up for Prom and dressing down for Worship!  Bride

Part 1

This 21st century is becoming progressively more interesting in a very bizarre manner. We are living in a time when just about anything goes! We can go almost anywhere and expect to see some of everything. You can see multiple piercings on the ears, lips, forehead, eyebrows, cheeks, neck, and head or just about anywhere on the body. Let’s not even discuss the places that we don’t see.

Oh my! It makes you wonder why so many want to inflict themselves with so much pain…

You can see glitter glam clothes or faces. Pink, royal blue, purple, burgundy, yellow and even green bold hair colors on both male and females. It has become acceptable for many to even walk around with their pants sagging below the buttocks! You can go to the shopping mall and see many clad in pajamas and slippers and guess what they are just out shopping; so what does it matter?  Let’s not forget the jeans with holes in them.  The old shorter than short “Daisy Duke” jean shorts are even trying to make their way to the forefront. WOW!

I know everyone wants to be comfortable or they just want to as the ole song says “Express Yourself!” So it has become socially tolerable to just dress down whenever or wherever. After all we are not hurting anyone.

But what does this all say? No matter why our youth are so confused. Too many mixed messages.

Think about this for a moment or two!

Who gets the right to determine what is right? If so what are the guidelines?

What is the most important event or occasion that you will attend? Is it a wedding, red carpet affair, birthday party, concert, funeral, job interview or perhaps a prom? How do you dress for the occasion? If it is a wedding, you probably want to wear your best? Or maybe not? Why is that; because it has become acceptable to dress just any kind of way; right?

Well, what about going to worship? You should just “come as you are.” If you have not been a part of God’s Church it is understandable. But if you have been a part of the Church for a while you might want to ask yourself; to whom or where do you present your best other than at worship?

Did you know that the Church is the Bride of Christ? We the people are His Church. The Church has begun to blend right in with the world.

It is becoming harder and harder to distinguish the difference unless it is a special occasion. But should not every time we come together  for worship be a special occasion?

It’s okay if you wear a suit and tie or business casual pantsuit, dress or blouse and slacks to the office if you are a manager or a CEO or CIO! But if I want to wear flip flops and cut offs it should not matter especially since I still get my work done. I just want to be comfortable and I don’t want to wait until casual Friday. What happened to the basic dress code? It really does matter how you present yourself!

Hmm I guess God is not interested in how we dress? “Therefore, I urge you, brothers in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…” Romans 12. What does this have to do with how I am dressed? A lot!

It’s clear here that we are not supposed to conform to the ways of the world. Notice how The Church has begun to pattern its dress after the standards of the world. This has even filtered over into going to worship! I guess we should really just want to hang out and sip a cup of coffee, eat doughnuts and be comfortable here too?

Perhaps this is why so many more are comfortable in sinful lifestyles. God is Love! Therefore we need to have more compassion right? What is so interesting during our travels we have been in countries where they would not let certain people come into the Sanctuary if you did not have on proper attire. There was an attendant at the door to determine if you were presentable. There compassion was because of their respect for the Lord they had a standard.

There is nothing wrong with freedom of expression. But what is proper and improper and who determines when or where? Does it matter that I go to worship looking like I’m on my way to the beach? Or if I look like I just woke up and threw on my most comfortable outfit? Or perhaps I was going to mow the lawn and decided to come to worship first. Or just perhaps I am going bowling after service and don’t want to make a change? Or perhaps I want to dress like I am going  to a  dance recital and wear a tutu?

But it’s okay to wear a suit and tie or robe sometimes if you are a pastor, minister, priest, bishop, elder or part of the praise team. Well maybe not because since its “March Madness” everyone can just come in their football jersey’s representing their favorite team. By the way ladies it’s okay to just pull on a pair of leggings because the jersey’s are as long as some of the dresses and tops you wear? It does not really matter how tight your dress is if you are small, medium,  large or… Oh my! I have just stepped on some toes! What’s wrong with wearing jerseys?

Hmmm tell me when did going to worship have anything to do with your favorite football or basketball team? I am all for team JESUS!!!  But  do not penalize me because I do not wear jerseys or T-shirts! Hmmm watch what happens if I show up in casual dress when everyone else is dressed up for a special occasion or program? Let’s see who is now exercising; “form and fashion?”  Be prepared to get frowns from;  the what you should be wearing today committee.  Well I’m not looking for approval. Therefore I am going to be led by the Spirit and  dress depending on what season it is and what’s the weather like.  Or dress how I deem is appropriate for the occasion.  I know I am just too ole fashion or just plain judgmental? Maybe so!

The point is you  need to be aware of who or what  you are following and why?

Worship is supposed to be about GOD! Worship is supposed to be about us being thankful and grateful that CHRIST JESUS died on the cross for us! He overcame sin in the flesh, lived a sinless life, died, was buried and arose from the dead with all power and authority! We are to give HIM   the GLORY! What is so casual about that?

It’s okay to pray at the altar and ask for healing, restoration and or some of your physical, emotional, mental or material needs. But before you go to pray for someone  don’t snicker and talk  all throughout  worship  and laugh and look me up and down  and think I am going to take you seriously…   But the moment altar call happens you flip the script.  You now become a prayer warrior… This is not a game, not is it a role to play .  Its  okay to  sit in  your  seat  or stand and pray  if you  prefer. It is also okay to shout, scream, laugh with joy and thankfulness, run around or do whatever? Please make sure you are sincere. “God is not the Author of confusion.”  Worship  is not “Showtime!”

The  point is the Lord always deserves our respect. We are to give Him honor!  It is the posture of our hearts that GOD is looking at… GOD can and will supply in HIS time whatever is in HIS Will for us! But worship really should not be about us always asking Him for something all the time. When you leave you should know more about the Lord and His Word than the people. Worship should be more about GOD and us thanking HIM. Worship is actually devotional time set aside to praise and adore the Lord; for all that He has done, is doing and will do! God deserves the PREEMINENCE!

Now how should we present ourselves? Look to the Lord and let Him direct you and not to the masses. I know we ought to be comfortable. We want to make everyone else comfortable too. We don’t want anyone to feel like they are being judged or unworthy, or that we are looking down on them? The truth is we all are unworthy. Jesus sacrificed His life on the cross for us all and at least we should make and attempt to put our best foot forward!

The women even went to the tomb to prepare Christ to see the Father. GOD IS A HOLY GOD! WORSHIP IS TO BE ALL ABOUT GOD!!!

HIS BLOOD  has  precious priceless cleansing POWER!

Dress like you have been redeemed. What if Jesus returned today? Would you want to run home and change?

What if I do not have anything to wear? Well what did you wear to that dance you went to, or to that wedding, or the ballet, or that sorority or fraternity dinner, to that job interview or to the prom or any other dress up event? Right; that’s different. Think about this for a moment. But you want to “dress down” when you come to worship God!

Ponder of this for a moment;

The Old Testament gives us a vivid description of the Temple and the clothing that the priest were adorned in. It is clear that they put their best foot forward. They prepared themselves and consecrated themselves for worship.  Many went through purification rituals in order to prepare for worship.  Don’t wait until you are at worship to pray. Pray before during and after. Leviticus has a plethora of laws, guidelines  and regulations that had to be adhered to prior to worship. We are not under the law but we need to exercise more discipline.

There has been a gradual shifting down of the dress code as well as the moral behavior… No wonder sin is abounding and “anything goes!” Just perhaps all this dressing down has put the Church in such a relaxed mode that it’s made many feel that there is no need to change because we are to just “come as you are!” Yes indeed come as you are! But you  are not to stay as you are! God is all about transforming our lives from the inside out!

See Part 2


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“The Bride/The Church” – Premarital Conflict

The Bride

The Church is currently experiencing premarital conflict! The Lamb of the marriage supper is being overlooked. A few of the invited guests are parading themselves as the Groom. The fruits of the flesh are attempting to join the banquet. The bride should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white. The fine linen is the righteousness of the saints according to the Book of Revelations. The Church is the bride of Christ. Jesus will return for His Church of this we can be assured. But how close to being ready are we? Collectively as well as independently? The signs of the time are quite apparent. We are encountering a multiplicity of phenomenal events. Earthquakes in divers places, heinous crimes, escalating multiple shooting incidents in schools, places of worship, same sex relationships, blatant adultery, questionable political elections but what does it all mean? Time is winding down.

In earlier times a marriage betrothal represented a respected covenant. A covenant is something you keep not something you merely repeat. The Church’s responsibility has not changed in spite of what’s going on. The Bride should be in preparation for a wedding celebration. Everyday should be lived in anticipation of our Lord’s arrival.

God has placed His heirs in various places to prepare for this great event. Man can not number the guest list. It is so vast and contains such an array of guests that He has elected an international, interracial, multi cultural, conglomeration of folks. Their level of responsibilities differ greatly. Yet the overall objective should not take any attention away from this glorious blessed event. Peter tells us “but you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to GOD, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day He visits us.” I Peter 2: 9-12 NIV. How prepared are you for His coming?

Preparing for a wedding involves much joy as well as fear and trepidation. But we can be assured that this wedding is in the will of God. The bridesmaids and groomsmen should not become confused. Their objective should be to assist in fostering a healthy spiritual environment for the ultimate feast. The instructions to prepare for this event have been given to us by GOD. He has even left His Holy Spirit to guide us and direct us to all truth. The truth is the bridal path. The CHURCH has only one Groom. No one can take the place of Jesus.

The participants of the bridal party have the obligation to come together. Not to distinguish who has more authority, but to work towards an effective Spirit-filled occasion. There are so many details involved that no one should worry about the significance of their participation. Staying focused will really help everyone from getting off track. Just remember we are all invited. Those who RSVP and plan on attending have one requirement – YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN!

The mind of Christ dwells in the hearts of each of His children. When we begin each day living in His presence we will not become sidetracked so easily. God has at His disposal everything we might possibly need. He knows what, when and who we need to fulfill our duties. Man does not live by bread alone but by what? THE WORD OF GOD.

Our Sunday, daily, weekly, monthly and annual rehearsal celebrations should consist of a delicacy of sacrifices of praise and spiritual food. The Holy Spirit stands invisibly positioned to confirm the Groom’s approval. We must truly desire to worship and respect God with our worship. To effectively do this, we must not allow personal agendas to permeate the worship. Praise is not always jumping up and down and running around. It is a combination of still quiet moments as well as hand clapping, dancing, shouting and praying without ceasing. The true worshipers must worship Him in spirit and in truth. Rebuke the things you know are not of God! Absolutely no junk food allowed! The main entrée is His Word whether it be in praise, song, sign language or the spoken word. The one thing we must keep in mind is WHO THE BRIDE BELONGS TO!

It is interesting to see how so many seem to think that their place of worship is the best place to be. You cannot limit God to your local place of worship. It is not always about being where you necessarily want to be. Sometimes He has you there to show a contrast. Jesus nor His disciples were not always welcomed where they were. For however long or short season He may have us in a particular place our focus must be upon Him. Don’t try to limit God to where you are. His world is vast. He is omnipresent! Your body is the temple where the Lord resides. Everywhere you are He is there.

Ask yourself if you’re ready for Him to return today? Have you been preparing? Is He abiding in your heart? Is He really welcomed in your home? Do you really worship Him in Spirit and in truth? Are you where He wants you to be or are you where you want to be? It is God’s will that is the desired avenue to the bridal path.

“Now as the church submits to Christ so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave Himself. As a radiant church without stain or wrinkle or any blemish but holy and blameless. In this way should husbands love their wives as their own body…” Ephesians 5:22-28 NIV. Have you truly submitted to His will in your life?

We must get our lives in order. God is a God of order. He does have a plan for each of His children. We are to live out the principles in the scriptures and make them the blueprint for our lives. When two or three are gathered together in one accord IN HIS NAME God has promised to be in the midst. Jesus has already been lifted up on the cross. His Word will draw all of the bridal participants. He has made the ultimate sacrifice for us. He has redeemed us by His precious blood! BLESS HIS HOLY NAME! Know and Trust and never doubt that you are SAVED by HIS GRACE and Heaven is your Eternal destination. We must relinquish control of His Bride to the Holy Spirit! CHRIST is coming back for HIS CHURCH. A Church without spot or wrinkle. Get ready! LIVE EVERYDAY “To God Be The Glory!” COME LORD!

P4CM Presents Ready or Not by Featured RHETORIC Poets Ezekiel & Janette..ikz




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