Adversary or Advocate?

Adversary or Advocate?

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen. 1 Peter 5:6-11 NIV

Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me. “All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. “You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. I have told you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe. I will not say much more to you, for the prince of this world is coming. He has no hold over me, but he comes so that the world may learn that I love the Father and do exactly what my Father has commanded me. “Come now; let us leave.                  John 14:23-31 NIV

I read an interesting article the other day, about why Christians should stop saying that Donald Trump is a Christian.  What the author of the article said was nothing new to me because I have said before, over and over again, but it was confirmation of what I have been saying. And it was refreshing to see what another real Christian had to say about their observations-the lack of any fruit of the Holy Spirit. In fact, the author said, the only fruit they have seen was “rotten fruit.” http://johnpavlovitz.com/2017/02/02/its-time-we-stopped-calling-donald-trump-a-christian/

Only those who have been “brainwashed” by the gaslighting strategy employed by the trump team or so blinded by their agenda of reversing Roe v Wade could believe that Trump has even acknowledged Christ. To be clear–a Christian is someone who follows the teachings of Christ–in all things and when filled with Holy Spirit–is reminded of everything He said and we see the fruit of that development in loving The Lord and loving others–unconditionally.

Again, and I will keep saying this–it is the Evangelical leaders who have set the stage for the mockery of our democratic process–maligned for all the world to see and then they wonder why others keep belittling Trump. Though those same leaders have said they prayed and “God told them Trump was His choice,” I see no evidence of any communication with the God of Heaven, the Creator of all things and without whom nothing was ever created. They communicated with each other and those in leadership positions to determine how they might effect a Republican win for the White House–just to make sure they could “control what women” do with their bodies. They can deny it all they want to, but the evidence is clear. They promoted an illiterate, cognitively impaired egotist to be president–just to have a say-so in the Supreme Court selection.

The god of this world–Satan–knows how to entrench himself in the minds of those who have not submitted to God and give them strong delusions–having them believe a lie because they did not want to know truth. It wasn’t just the Evangelical leaders; it was all those who were gullible enough to believe “anything” Trump said. But because they kept listening–they were gaslighted–not knowing they were being brainwashed to accept the lies and even now–they keep listening to the lies and the liars–choosing to ignore the truth that is displayed before them daily. That’s the effect of gaslighting–psychological manipulation.

We have an Advocate–His name is Jesus–who will plead our case before The Father and when we allow Holy Spirit who dwells within us to lead us–we can be assured the verdict will be, “Well done.”

But then there is the adversary–the prince of this world–who influences weak minds and spiritually weak people, into believing him and this can only happen when we refuse to submit to God and live according to His Word. For the Word tells us to, “Submit to God, resist the devil, and He will flee.” (James 4:7) We cannot “resist” the devil if we keep listening to the lies and more importantly, if we have not “submitted” our thoughts and ways to God, allowing Him to lead us–we place ourselves in jeopardy–giving the adversary room to work in our lives.

I have come to realize that perhaps, not many people reading my daily blog might believe I consult God in what I say, and that’s okay. God knows. For there is never a time that I don’t consult Him about any subject that I write. I honor His Word in the selection of passages used as a foundation for what I say and He honors “my choice” in what I say that aligns with His Word.

Here’s the thing–none of us have to “believe” anyone else, but I choose to acknowledge and support those who demonstrate their love of God by doing what God says–not people. God would not promote a pathological liar to represent Him–but mere mortals with an agenda did and do. And now–the Trump Team has developed a new way to present their lies–as “alternative facts” which are still lies.

So, everyone still has choices. We can be influenced negatively and publicly by the adversary, the devil; or we can live according to God’s Word and know our Advocate will always be by our side. It is “our choice” as to who we listen to and believe and God will honor our choices by allowing the consequences of our choices to overtake–for the good or the worse–we choose.

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Why Jesus Said, “The Spirit of Truth Will Remind You!”

“But when the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.” (John 16:13-15 NIV)

The promise of Holy Spirit, our Advocate, Comforter, and Counselor–to those who follow Christ was not just for the disciples of that day, but for all who believe Him because of them. At the time Jesus was telling them about the role of Holy Spirit, He did so because He knew His time here on earth was just about up, but He didn’t want His disciples to be discouraged in His physical absence. A number of things led up to this conversation, but what makes it worthwhile is knowing, we also have access to all Jesus promised through Holy Spirit. But this is why He said it.

John 16:7-12

v. 7 But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you.

v.8 When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment:

v.9 about sin, because people do not believe in me;

v.10 about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer;

v.11 and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.

v.12 I have much more to say to you, more than you can bear.”

The time was now at hand which the prophets predicted. Jesus was about to submit Himself for the ultimate sacrifice for sin and it was time for Him to return to heaven. But He wanted His disciples to know, they would not be left without benefit of His continued guidance in all things.

Everything He had told them about sin–Holy Spirit would bring back to their remembrance and they would see the results of sin because people did not believe Him. What most people do not understand about what Jesus said about sin was He included all sin, not the variations of sin. When the religious leaders brought the woman who was supposedly caught in the act of adultery, He told her to go and SIN no more. He did not make a distinction between fornication, or other sexual immorality or anything else. He did not say, don’t commit any more SINS, He said SIN no more. Don’t do anything that is a sin according to God’s Word! For those who know His purpose in being here, we know that’s what He meant. And that is why He said, there would be this continuous debate about sin, because people don’t believe Him. If we love Him, we’ll obey Him.

He said Holy Spirit would guide all who believe Him in righteousness–not self-righteousness-but leading all to be in right-standing with God. In order to be in right standing with God, one must know what God has said and be willing to stand on His Word for all times–no matter what current trends may abound. In fact, Paul tells us we are not to conform to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of our minds in Christ Jesus. Paul understood that the enemy first attacks and influences the minds of people and then behavior follows the thoughts of their minds. If we have the mind of Christ–through relationship with Him, then we stand on God’s Word and will not fall prey to the enemy’s deceptions.

Then, as for judgment–judgment has already made against the prince of this world–the god of this world, Satan, the prince of darkness (always influencing people to try to hide their wrong-doing), the devil–by whatever name he is known, the lake of fire has already been prepared for him and now he seeks to influence others so he won’t burn alone.

Because He understood that He had given His disciples much to think about and He knew they did not fully understand, He decided not to overwhelm them with more teachings, but assured them that Holy Spirit would continue to teach them and remind them of all they had been taught and show them things to come.

I can imagine that every person who has ever read the Bible in its entirety, more than once–has been overwhelmed by the abundance of information. And most people have their own method of reading and reading in order to get the most out of it the content and understanding the intent. All of the sins–as God gave them–are enumerated in Deuteronomy 28–which I refer to as the book of blessings and curses. Of course they are explained in detailed throughout Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers, as well as the rest of Deuteronomy. But as I said, there is much than can overwhelm and simplicity usually leaves its mark.

The bottom line is this–God has a blueprint for our living–designed to put us in a position to prosper, not harm us so we would have a future and our children’s children would have a great future as well. We were meant to have generational blessings, but for those who won’t obey, they have been destined for generational curses. It’s time to break the curses, but it can only be done out of obedience to God’s Word, not political correctness, or succumbing to Satan’s agenda.

Holy Spirit is here–to remind us, to guide us, to comfort us and to be our Advocate when we need Him.

More about what Jesus said and why, next time.