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Pastor's Message

Knowing Where We Belong

June 08

Dear Friends,

I was listening to the weather this morning and it was stated that, in the month of February, 138 tornadoes were reported in various parts of the country. In the month of May, 461 were reported. I know this is a big country, but the numbers seem to be on the rise. It seems like storms are brewing all around, winds are blowing, twisters are bringing devastation, earthquakes are taking lives. On top of this is the rise of fuel prices, cost of living is increasing, and economic recession is being reported. The Word of God says, 'In ALL these things we are more than conquerors.."

Hebrews 12:26-29 "And His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, "Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heaven." This expression, "Yet once more," denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire."The Spirit of God spoke to us in the New Year's Eve service that there was going to be a shaking going on this year.

There is certainly a shaking going on all around us. It is in the weather, the economy, in marriages, families, churches, business, our personal lives. In these days we must be sure to be holding to the things that cannot be shaken. The Kingdom of God is that which cannot be shaken

Being in the Kingdom is being born again, but it is also about growing. When we are first born again, our minds were not renewed and our emotions were not under the control of the Holy Spirit. Since it is the seen, temporal realm that is being shaken, then we must have the temporal part of our being holding tight to the unshaken Kingdom. Our minds need to be renewed, our emotions under control, our will set on the will of God, and our bodies made to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord. Our service offered to God, with gratitude, is the offering up of our bodies as a living sacrifice which is our spiritual service of worship.

Being in the Body is about being where God wants you to be. Deuteronomy 12:5-14 says, "But you shall seek the Lord at the place which the Lord your God will choose from all your tribes, to establish His name there for His dwelling, and there you shall come. There you shall bring your burnt offerings, your sacrifices, your tithes, the contribution of your hand, your votive offerings, your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herd and of your flock. There also you and your households shall eat before the Lord your God, and rejoice in all your undertakings in which the Lord your God has blessed you. "When you cross the Jordan and live in the land which the Lord your God is giving you to inherit, and He gives you rest from all your enemies around you so that you live in security, then it shall come about that the place in which the Lord your God will choose for His name to dwell, there you shall bring all that I command you: your burnt offerings and your sacrifices, your tithes and the contribution of your hand, and all your choice votive offerings which you will vow to the Lord. And you shall rejoice before the Lord your God, you and your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, and the Levite who is within your gates, since he has no portion or inheritance with you. Be careful that you do not offer your burnt offerings in every place you see, but in the place which the Lord chooses in one of your tribes, there you shall offer your burnt offerings, and there you shall do all that I command you."

From these verses of scripture we see that God does not have a problem with tribes. In fact, they were His idea. Yet, He tells us that within all of the tribes, He picks a place that we go to worship and bring offerings. He says that there we will eat, rejoice, and be blessed. He specifically warns us against bringing offerings to just any religious place. The Lord chooses a place and He does not change. Our emotions change, but He does not.

I always think of Elisha and Elijah. In 2 Kings it tells us of the captain and his 50 that came to arrest Elijah, and Elijah called fire down and consumed them all. Elisha, sitting there watching, could have had some emotional reaction to these actions. Then it happened a second time. Then the third time another captain and his 50 approached Elijah. This captain's attitude was different, therefore the outcome was different. (2Kings 1:1-16)
Elisha could have let his emotions lead him and cause him to leave Elijah, and he would have missed the Lord's outcome to the situation. But we know, by this time of Elisha following Elijah, he was not a person led by emotion any longer.

As the two continued on together, the time came when they would part company. 2Kings 2:1-3 And it came about when the Lord was about to take up Elijah by a whirlwind to heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal. Elijah said to Elisha, "Stay here please, for the Lord has sent me as far as Bethel." But Elisha said, "As the Lord lives and as you yourself live, I will not leave you." So they went down to Bethel. Then the sons of the prophets who were at Bethel came out to Elisha and said to him, "Do you know that the Lord will take away your master from over you today?" And he said, "Yes, I know; be still.

Elisha would not be moved by what others said, he would not even allow them to keep speaking. He plainly told them, 'Be still'. He never asked for their opinion, and he didn't want to hear it. Elisha had made a decision in his heart; "As the Lord lives and as you, yourself, live, I will not leave you." Therefore, his emotions could not lead him, the voice of others could not persuade him. He was settled, secure, and steadfast, refusing to hear anything contrary to what he knew in his heart was the direction of the Lord. God had set Elisha with Elijah and that never changed according to the Word of the Lord.

2 Kings 2:9-10 When they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha, "Ask what I shall do for you before I am taken from you." And Elisha said, "Please, let a double portion of your spirit be upon me." He said, "You have asked a hard thing. Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so. If you see me, is an expression meaning to see face to face and eye to eye. This is not just hanging around someone, but seeing eye to eye on things, having a face to face relationship. We could read it this way; "If we are walking together face to face, seeing things eye to eye, and being in agreement, then it shall be so." As we read on in the account we see that it was so, because it was so with Elisha. The Lord put them together and Elisha stayed until the Lord, not his emotions, redirected the plan.

Friends, in these days, our physical house needs to be in order, and the house of our worship and giving needs to be in the order of where God sets us. These are important facts when it comes to holding to the things that cannot be shaken in these days. We want to be holding to the Kingdom of God in our lives and within ourselves, taught in the Word of God, that will bring development to grow in Christ, in the unshakable Kingdom.

We are no longer to be children (Ephesians 4:14), but the mature sons of God, manifesting His power in these shakable days. Romans 8:19 For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God.

Blessings to you all,

Pastor Bob