Are you Alone? 1/31/16

Are you alone? …Jesus cried….”Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani”…..

There was one cup Jesus accepted. There was one cup Jesus refused….
“Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” Luke 22:42.  Jesus accepted the cup from the Father as He prayed in the mid-night hour in Gethsemane which in Hebrew is interpreted to mean ‘oil press’.

Yet, while at Golgotha, Jesus was offered another ‘cup’ (a wetted sponge on a stick). The ‘cup’ was gall. It is said that vinegar was mixed with gall (gall, being a mixture of wine and poison). But this cup Jesus refused- which was offered by the hand of the world. “They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink.” Mat. 27:34.

This comparison reflects well, the expression Jesus cried on the cross just prior to His leaving this world….”And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”Mat. 27:46.

God offers a cup to you from which to drink. The cup He offers is His own blood- that you may be free.
The world offers a cup to you from which you may chose to drink…yes, there is wine…but it is seasoned with bitterness ( vinegar), and poison (meant to kill, steal and destroy your life)

One of the most bitter human experiences is being alone and isolated by your own kin and especially from the Lord. This human angst is with us all. We each were born for a hunger for God, Jesus the Christ. It’s embedded in the soul from the original fall. It’s allowed to be there because the Will and design of God were predestined. Why? Because He made us and knew us before the foundation. His plan for salvation was ready before Adam was formed (the first son). Often, Jesus claimed He was the “son of God and son of man.” His claim is often over looked. His claim stated that He was God in the flesh. His claim was two fold: “I AM God in the flesh,” and “I have subdued the fallen; and given My own sons a high place at my right side- eternally.”

How do the fallen deceive the Sons of God? …A whisper….The fallen attempt to convince the Sons of the same lies whispered to the first son. But a second son was spoken about by the prophets. Jesus.

He came as a man, “son of man.” He came as God in the flesh, the sacrifice for His Sons-that the fallen might remain nothing more than a shadow.  Alas, our long waiting since the time of the first son was accomplished – His total perfected and completed plan.

Isaiah 55:11King James Version (KJV)

11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.”
You and I were a word He called forth.

So, when the enemy of your soul tells you that you are alone or isolated,  when you or I cry,  we can be comforted by drinking of the blood of Jesus. Jesus didn’t cry on the cross, “Father, Father- why hast thou forsaken me,” for His own sake. God in the flesh cried as the ‘son of man’ to restore our identity. His willing life He laid down to bring us home to Him – that we may be perfected.

The world will always offer temptation (wine), vinegar (bitterness) and poison.  But Jesus offers eternal life with Him: peace in the spirit, life ever-lasting, and an unending abiding with Him; the I AM; the true maker and creator of your very being.

The story of Jesus did not end with the expression of man.  If so  He would not be who He said He was.. .”Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani”.

Instead He defied death. He ripped the keys from hell and the prince of the earth. He came back. He took His life back up. He showed His sons His power….and the power He shares with us, His Sons.

Be Blessed…. we are never alone. Jesus paid a precious price for you and I to know that we can know Him personally and walk with Him.
God bless you.

Daily Proselytizing – 1/23/16

Do you have to proselytize every day?

Yours is a good question and one that I am delighted to address. I appreciate your honesty and polite manner in which you post your question.

I think that the term “proselytizing” suggests some sort of covert, unwanted or unwarranted intentions. Indeed, I believe this was precisely the problem that the Jews had with Jesus. “Relativism” and “forbearance” were clearly the rule of his day. Otherwise Pilate would not have said to Jesus, “What is truth?” To the Jews he was an upstart, a nobody from the sticks, a know-it-all. Really now, who does he think he is?

Blasphemy was simply the legal loophole that they needed to crucify him. It would have been much easier to overlook his blasphemy and declare him insane. But they wanted him dead because he was “proselytizing” the masses and because of his lack of “forbearance” with those who did not share his point of view.

Paul said of Christ, “if the dead are not raised, let us eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die.” And again Paul says, “if in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.”

Under threat of criminal punishment for proselytizing, we might ask what compelled Peter and John to respond to threatening public officials, “We cannot help but speak those things which we have both seen and heard.” Peter was acutely aware of the accusations that suggested his truth was no better than anyone else’s. Hence, in his 2nd letter he writes “we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his Majesty.” So Peter was a believer not just because he saw miracles but because he witnessed Christ transfigured, Christ resurrected and Christ ascending. He was convinced of the truth because he had first-hand experience with the man who declared that he is the Truth, the Life and The Only Way.

I believe God does indeed reward those who follow blindly. But from the first 2 chapters in the book of Acts we understand that it is clearly God’s intention to reward believers with a confirmation of their faith known as the “gift of the Holy Ghost.” What Christians sometimes call a “blessed assurance” is, in my opinion, essential in this world to have the power to boldly and unabashedly declare truth regardless of how intolerant one might seem.

You see, “the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” In other words, one would have to have a “spiritual rebirth” so to speak, just to begin to see the value of this message, this good news, this gospel.

I’m sure you’re familiar with the response of Jesus to the well-known Rabbi Nicodemus, “Truly I say unto you, except a man be born again he cannot even see the kingdom of God.” I don’t enter into debates with people in an attempt to prove Christ. I don’t try to share Christ by disproving science, upholding Biblical archaeology, disqualifying so-called false Christians or engaging in other circus acts.

I believe people come to Christ when they are called by Him. And if you have been called – his silence is deafening until you repent of your sinful nature and cry out to him, asking him to reveal himself to you. I testify about Him because I know Him and I love Him.

I pray someday soon you also come to personally know this God in the flesh, this Jesus of Nazareth whose I am and whom I serve.

Discernment for Depression – 1/23/16


The psalmist was clearly exposed to feelings of desperation and depression. Jesus was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. God sometimes allows us to walk through the valley of the shadow of death so that we can comfort others with the same comfort that we have been comforted with.

It goes without saying that there shall be seasons of refreshing and of course, there is victory in Jesus. But sometimes we find ourselves deep in a valley and ask why. We are advised by James to “Let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.” But at other times sadness, loneliness or feelings of depression come in the form of a wilderness experience.

Both Moses and Jesus had well documented wilderness experiences that were later understood as preparation for ministry. Unfortunately, Christians sometimes jump to the conclusion that all who appear depressed simply need to be healed or delivered. With these assumptions the well-intended believer could come across shallow, and like Job’s comforters, simply add to the person’s sorrow.  There is of course a place for deliverance when somebody is repeatedly attacked, but discernment is essential when relief is sought or reasons for depression are asked.  Keep in mind depression is common to all of us. For example, we might say Elijah was a bit depressed when Jezebel sought his life, …and yet the Bible tells us he was a man of like passions as you and I.

So these feelings are universal. Indeed, without trials and tribulations we are unable to appreciate or even experience joy unspeakable and full of glory. It’s as though He creates a stark contrast so that we can desire more of Him. There’s nothing more blessed than one so depressed and desperate under the conviction of their sinful nature. It leads to true repentance, and from this despair comes a cry from the bottom of one’s heart. A cry that only God can fill with His saving grace. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death (2Cor.7:10).

My friends, allow me to share some wisdom from God. If you are called and annointed to minister to the depressed, seek Him also for discernment. God may indeed ask you to rebuke Satan and pray for deliverance. Or He may have you put your arms around the one in sorrow and cry with them as you pray for His comfort.

Jerry Turk's photo.

To Live is Christ, and to Die is Gain. Phil 1:21- 1/18/16

For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Mark 8:36

So many times, the temptation arrives to go for success in the way that the world defines it, money, status, power, fame, etc. The simple things of life are overlooking in favor of more money or a better position at work.

But what is the cost? Stress? High blood pressure? Always striving to have more at the loss of contentment? In the end, time has a value that money can’t buy.

To love and be loved is a great treasure. And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. Eph 3:19 is the greatest treasure of all. 

That Jesus loves us is easy to see that He died for us on the cross. May we show we love God by dying to our own desires and living a life of service to all those that God places in our path. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. Phil 1:21  

From John 15…. Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.  Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. These things I command you, that ye love one another.

The Latter Rain 1/16/16


Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month (Joel 2:23). Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth. (Hosea 6:3)

In the fall, the Israelites could anticipate and usually received a 2nd great rain just prior to harvest. This is the Latter Rain. This fall rain would greatly enhance their crops just before harvest. So, it will be just before the harvest. Those believers who have oil in their lamps (or remain filled with the Holy Ghost) will be set ablaze by the FIRE of the HOLY GHOST.

But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth (Acts 1:8). And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth ( Revelation 11:3).

Jesus said, “I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me” (John 8:18). The two witnesses are you and the Holy Ghost in you. Get ready for the LATTER RAIN.

Jerry Turk's photo.

Women in the Pulpit? 1/3/16

The attached picture reminds us that women were the first to preach the Gospel. But obviously, this is a highly contentious and provocative topic in most Christian circles. How does the Lord Jesus feel about all of this discussion and contention? The issue of gender is not as big an issue as many Christians make it out to be. Recall he says “I will pour out my Spirit on ALL flesh.” That means men and women. It’s rather redundant to talk about women in the pulpit when the New Testament doesn’t even talk about a “pulpit.”

The problem with so many Christians is that they believe there are sons and daughters of God. This is Old Testament theology. We read in Romans that “the whole creation is groaning and travailing in pain for the manifestation of the Sons of God.” So then all of creation will be set free not by the return of Jesus but by the Manifested Sons. “God shall shortly bruise Satan under your feet.” “Sons of God” is a term that means created directly by God. Hence in Job the angels are even referred to as Sons of God.

Recall, “we are being born again of an incorruptible [invincible, immortal] seed.” So then Sons of God is not gender related nor male exclusive. It refers to all those who are “being conformed to his image.” You too dear sisters, like your brothers in Christ, are called to be Sons of God. “As many as received Him, to them gave he the power to become the Sons of God.” This sort of wrangling and disputing over the role of women in the church, the mere discussion of it, the arguments for and against is of the flesh. This is an example of how Judiazed the church has become.

He seeks those “who worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.” He doesn’t seek to re-establish or reinforce a fleshly kingdom like the Old Testament nation of Israel. “The kingdom of God is not meat or drink but righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.” Jesus said, “My Kingdom is not of this world.” Why are you looking for a worldly order. This entire discussion of the role of women in the church is worldly. It is of the flesh. “In Christ Jesus there is neither Jew nor Greek, bond or free, male or female.” “Set your affections on things above and not on things of the earth where Christ sitteth at the right hand of God.”

And what is it like above where Christ sitteth? Jesus made it abundantly clear for us in Matthew 22:23-30. “The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him, saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother. Now there were with us seven brethren: and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and, having no issue, left his wife unto his brother: Likewise the second also, and the third, unto the seventh. And last of all the woman died also. Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her. Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven.” I pray you be blessed in Jesus name.

Jerry Turk's photo.