The Need of Esthers!

The Need of Esthers!

That same day King Xerxes gave Queen Esther the estate of Haman, the enemy of the Jews. And Mordecai came into the presence of the king, for Esther had told how he was related to her.The king took off his signet ring, which he had reclaimed from Haman, and presented it to Mordecai. And Esther appointed him over Haman’s estate.Esther again pleaded with the king, falling at his feet and weeping. She begged him to put an end to the evil plan of Haman the Agagite, which he had devised against the Jews.Then the king extended the gold scepter to Esther and she arose and stood before him. “If it pleases the king,” she said, “and if he regards me with favor and thinks it the right thing to do, and if he is pleased with me, let an order be written overruling the dispatches that Haman son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, devised and wrote to destroy the Jews in all the king’s provinces.For how can I bear to see disaster fall on my people? How can I bear to see the destruction of my family?” King Xerxes replied to Queen Esther and to Mordecai the Jew, “Because Haman attacked the Jews, I have given his estate to Esther, and they have impaled him on the pole he set up. Now write another decree in the king’s name in behalf of the Jews as seems best to you, and seal it with the king’s signet ring—for no document written in the king’s name and sealed with his ring can be revoked.”At once the royal secretaries were summoned—on the twenty-third day of the third month, the month of Sivan. They wrote out all Mordecai’s orders to the Jews, and to the satraps, governors and nobles of the 127 provinces stretching from India to Cush. These orders were written in the script of each province and the language of each people and also to the Jews in their own script and language.Mordecai wrote in the name of King Xerxes, sealed the dispatches with the king’s signet ring, and sent them by mounted couriers, who rode fast horses especially bred for the king.The king’s edict granted the Jews in every city the right to assemble and protect themselves; to destroy, kill and annihilate the armed men of any nationality or province who might attack them and their women and children, and to plunder the property of their enemies.The day appointed for the Jews to do this in all the provinces of King Xerxes was the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month of Adar. A copy of the text of the edict was to be issued as law in every province and made known to the people of every nationality so that the Jews would be ready on that day to avenge themselves on their enemies. The couriers, riding the royal horses, went out, spurred on by the king’s command, and the edict was issued in the citadel of Susa. When Mordecai left the king’s presence, he was wearing royal garments of blue and white, a large crown of gold and a purple robe of fine linen. And the city of Susa held a joyous celebration. For the Jews it was a time of happiness and joy, gladness and honor.In every province and in every city to which the edict of the king came, there was joy and gladness among the Jews, with feasting and celebrating. And many people of other nationalities became Jews because fear of the Jews had seized them. Esther 8 NIV

There is a spirit of Esther residing in the land–through the many who are boldly standing up and opposing injustices towards all and we need more–Esthers (whether male or female) to stand against the evil emanating from the White House.

In order for their to be true peace in the world, the world must stand together against evil where it finds it and that’s not just against North Korea, China or Russia or even ISIS. For the evil we must first fight starts in America–against those who plot evil against all Americans with their limited views and perspectives of life because of their hatred of others. “Blessings crown the head of the righteous, but violence overwhelms the mouth of the wicked.” Proverbs 10:6 NIV

When the head of anything is rotten or evil, only the stench of being rotten will flow downward which explains all the “rotten” we see and smell in the White House. And the one who could have been an “Esther” won’t even dwell in the presence of evil. Since there is so little respect for his wife, he probably wouldn’t pay attention to an appeal from her anyway.

Now it is up to all who know the story–or are least willing to read it in its entirety–to rise up and sound the alarm, making sure all know the drill to get ready to fight back and know victory in the Name of Jesus!

The edict has been written and promoted for all to see and a date has been set for the evil to strike at the hearts of all who know compassion and love and we are ready to fight back–and totally decimate the evil that dares to approach those who belong to God (in deed and not just words) so that our victory will be heard and felt around the globe–we #TheResistance and we will never give in or cave to the dictates of evil.

Once Jews–Converted Christians!

“The Apostles and the believers throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the Word of God. Now those who had been scattered in the persecution that broke out when Stephen was killed traveled as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus and Antioch, spreading the Word only among Jews. Some of them, however, men from Cyprus and Cyrene, went to Antioch and began to speak to Greeks also, telling them the good news about the Lord Jesus. The Lord’s hand was with them, and a great number of people believed and turned to The Lord. Then Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul and when he found him, he brought him to Antioch. So for a whole year Barnabas and Saul met with the church and taught great numbers of people. The disciples were called Christians first at Antioch.” (Acts 11:1, 19-21, 25, 26 NIV)

Let me say at the outset of this post that I know and understand that Christianity–a label for those who followed Christ then began with the conversion of Jews. This post takes nothing from the fact the Jews were and are God’s chosen people and the rest of us who choose to Believe–the work on the Cross, the resurrection, and Divinity of Jesus are adopted into the family as an act of faith.

That being said, if we pay attention to the verses before the 26th verse–where people called those Jews who followed the teachings of Jesus–Christians, we will see that at first–they were simply–Believers–those who believed those who had walked with Jesus and in His purpose for coming down to earth.

Generally, what happens when we allow others to decide a label for us–we err in the teaching of truth. As with the label–Christian–we have come so far from the truth in teaching God’s Word and His love that we have become an object of ridicule. One of the reasons we are ridiculed for our faith is the fact that there are too many divisions–too many denominations and sects–all promoting their own version of truth and veered so far off the mark that many are considered cults.

I recently read a blog, by Fred, who thought he was a Christian because he became involved with the Seventh Day Adventist, and because he was disillusioned by what occurred within the religious group, he has since converted to becoming a Jew, apparently not understanding that all original Christians were converted Jews.

We are not Christians because of the church we join or hold special religious beliefs. We are Believers because we Believe The Word of God and that includes following the teachings of Jesus. No matter how carefully one inspects The Word–no denominations will be found. Man–in his desire to control others–created denominations based upon micro-selection of Scriptures. In every religious group–their foundation is based upon one or two verses of Scripture because they did not understand how all the scriptures align and none to be ignored. And in some cases, the religious group is named after the person who chose to remove themselves from the fray of religiosity–only to perpetuate more.

This is how we come to have the Baptists–who misunderstood John’s role–and his role was not his title. The Church of God–so named because someone misunderstood what Paul was saying in Acts 20 and in his letters to the church at Corinth. The Church of God in Christ–so named because someone had the bright idea to make a distinction to who they were by separating from The Church of God, but adding “in Christ” to the banner. Jehovah Witnesses–so named because they misunderstood that everyone who promoted the Gospel of Jesus Christ is His witness and the founders chose to re-write the bible to suit their purposes. This is important since they originally denied the divinity of Jesus and have for years, denied the virgin birth and so many other truths. The Methodists–so named after a person because of the method or strategy used to promote religion. The Lutherans–so named after Martin Luther–promoting a doctrine with some basis of truth, but not totally. And of course–The Catholic Church–who claims that Peter is their foundation, but deny priests to be married when Peter was married–all in an attempt to control others. And of course we cannot deny the horrors inflicted upon millions because they misunderstood The Word and warned others not to try to read it because it would confuse them. Religious persecution (forced conversions and beheading) did not begin with those in this century who are misguided, but with those who thought they were better than everyone else and chose to force their beliefs on others and killed any who resisted. 

There are so many other groups that it would take a book to discuss them at length and to point out how they have erred in their foundational beliefs. The truth is very simply this–for most Believers–we Believe The Word of God. We believe that mankind was so far from fulfilling God’s purpose for us, that He decided to come down to earth in the person of Jesus Christ to demonstrate His love for us. He chose to be crucified, died, and rose again–redeeming us–giving us a chance to live with Him for all eternity, forgiving our sins and providing us with His presence at all times in the person of Holy Spirit. The inspired word of God, rightly interpreted and promoted by those in relationship with Him, is what Believers believe. Anything other than this is spawned by religious spirits that bear no truth and have no relationship with God.

I am yet a Believer with no religious hangups and my desire is to please God only. My choice–is made with information and relationship, and not coercion as some would have others think.

Letting Old Ways Go!

“But some of the sect of the Pharisees who had believed stood up, saying, “It is necessary to circumcise them and to direct them to observe the Law of Moses.” (Acts 15:5)

There are times when God has moved upon the heart of people–whoever is willing to hear and receive the Good News–and everyone is rejoicing over God’s goodness and someone comes along–thinking they are superior to all and try to take them backwards.

Let me put this into the proper context. There was much discussion about what policies and what should be done in the early church regarding the non-Jewish (Gentiles) believers. Those who were content with preaching the Gospel were overjoyed at the reception by the Gentiles and wanted nothing more for them other than to live by the dictates of the Holy Spirit, whom they had received with gladness. But because there were divisions regarding the teachings, primarily because those who had lived “according to The Law” felt they were superior to those just coming into the knowledge of Jesus Christ, and they wanted to regulate the new converts–according to the old ways and were demanding circumcision.

Peter steps up to the plate and reminds them all that God had used him specifically to share the Good News with the Gentiles and since they had received the message and the Holy Spirit, they should have not be bound by traditions that the Jews had not been able to keep.

How like some church leaders today? They were once bound by the dictates of tradition and even though they have seen the works of God moving upon the people without “strict regulations” they make policies that make no sense and have nothing to do with living a holy life. What many have forgotten is that God is not a respecter of people. What He has for one, He has for all who are willing to receive.

Therefore, God is not concerned about a dress code in a place of worship; He is concerned about the heart of the people. God is not concerned about who carries the message; He is concerned about the message that is carried and that it is a message from Him, not them. When people feel the need to bind others by laws and policies, they arbitrarily restrict (or grieve) the Holy Spirit who Himself becomes limited by those who cannot let go of the “old ways.”

Let us assume for a moment–that every person having heard the Gospel message has received it, repented and received Holy Spirit as the guiding force in their lives. Is there any need for rules? Not if we truly believe that Holy Spirit guides us into all truth. The rules come into play because people–usually men–feel the need to be superior and they want to establish rules by which they are not willing to follow. This sounds like the parenting method of many–you know–“do as I say, not as I do” mentality. They are hypocrites and make a mockery out of parenting like some make a mockery of church leadership.

If we want to see the “new thing” that God has promised He will do in our lives, we must be willing to let go of the old ways that would inhibit Him from acting on our behalves. When the rules or policies have nothing to do with salvation or living a holy life–leave them where they belong–behind us, not in front of us.

Father, in the name of Jesus, help us to realize that we need to let go of the old in order to make room for the new that You have prepared for us. Thank You for the direction and guidance we receive from Holy Spirit and remind us to always to ready to hear from You through Him.

A Gift For All!

“The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on Gentiles” (Acts 10:45).

After Peter preached to the crowd who had gathered about who Jesus is and what He came to do, the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out on all who received the message. But in this verse, we see that those who were “circumcised” (Jews by birth and faith, who were converted and became the first Christians) were astonished for they felt the “gift” was for them only.

There is a great deal that could said about the infilling/indwelling of the Holy Spirit, but it would take more room and time than I have. However, this point must be made. There are no superior groups of people in Christ Jesus. His gift is available for all who believe and receive. And those who operate with the guidance of Holy Spirit are not superior; they are gifted which is very different. All can be gifted if they would just believe and receive.

The point is that none of us should think we are more special in God’s sight than any other. If we belong to Him, we are all members of the same family, no matter what denominational banner we carry. If all Christians, Buddhists, Muslims, and anyone else believing in our Creator God, would ever get to this one truth, the world would be a better place in which to live.

Instead of thinking any of us are superior over another group, we should work on developing our relationship with God, understanding what it is He wants us to do that will bring honor and glory to Him, and then receive the gift of Holy Spirit, allowing Him to guide us in all truth.

Are you ready to receive the gift? Humbling yourself and acknowledging the need for guidance other than your own, is the first step. Believe in He who was sent to redeem us and receive the gift of promise–Holy Spirit–who will lead us and guide us in all things and empower us to do all things well, to the glory of God.