Thrown in the Furnace

Reading in our Bibles, we hear of the great tales of heroic people. Going to Sunday school when we were little, we remember things like David and Goliath; the fiery furnace; Jesus’ ministry, and His miracles. Yet, it was never emphasized that these were ordinary people like you and me. We grow up in church and are taught that our faith is personal. Thus, our struggles and temptations are personal too. We are inadvertently taught that the Christian walk is a lonely one, only between us and God. Don’t share your closet at church. But is this true? Reading in Acts this morning I can’t help but cry out to the church for its, willingly or unwillingly, ignorance. The book of Acts paints a picture of community, DAILY. Why do we not have this now? Because we have been lied to regarding the purpose and structure of the church. The church is the body of believers. It isn’t a building we go to every week to hear a man speak or see people who act differently than they do during the week. The CHURCH is a body of CHRISTIANS in COMMUNITY WITH EACH OTHER. This is why when I attend a Sunday service and hear a pastor say we need to reach the lost, I am despondent over the state of the American church. We preach salvation and the commission but do we go out as a community and reach them? NO! The brick-and-mortar building sends its congregants out to fend for themselves. Picture this: A shepherd has sheep in his fold. He nurtures them and feeds them. Then he sends them out into the surrounding area to be attacked by wolves and bears with a slight chance of seeing other sheep. Then, the sheep come back to the fold the next week, hungry, worn out, and confused with how life in the fold is so different than outside it. This is what the modern-day “church” (building) is doing. They send us out into the world with no COMMUNITY! In Acts, the apostles had the Holy Spirit. Why? Because, as Acts 5:32 says…

And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.

Acts 5:32

They obeyed Him. If you just read the first 4 chapters of Acts, you will see the greatest revivals in a DAY!? You see the phrases, “three thousand,” and “five thousand” were added daily. Today, we are lucky to get 5 a year! Why is that? In the books of Acts, they were persecuted, thrown in jail, and told to never preach Yeshuah’s name. What was their response?

  • And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ. ~ Acts 5:41-42
  •  For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard. Acts 4:20

They were rejoicing! It doesn’t get much better later either. Paul talks about counting his imprisonment as joy. You see, Christians were known for having something special called joy. People weren’t used to this weird happiness all the time. They were under Roman occupation. How did that spell joy? Yet, we as Americans are sad if our favorite brand of bacon is not in stock. We get upset over a church building’s choice of carpet color. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? And we wonder why America is going downhill.

Americans, my fellow believers, people, we need to wake up and see the times! We are headed for the showers of the holocaust. War is at our doorstep. Famine is looming across the Atlantic. Our cities are being trashed with filth and are running rampant with crimes. But, you know what, it’s ok because it will never happen here. We’ll just go into our little bunkers and survive the storm. We will succumb and bow down, take the bio-weapon to buy. We will allow our administration to tell us what to do, even though the power they have is from us.

PEOPLE! When will you wake up? The Germans never imagined Hitler would do what he did. The biggest supporters of that regime were the churches! I weep inside and mourn for what the body of believers has allowed to happen. Yes, you and I have allowed this to happen by sitting quietly on our pews day after day and singing hymns and songs about a loving God. That God… is a figment of the church’s mind. He is loving but He is also JUST. He punishes those who break His law. Fellow believers, my beloved, WAKE UP! Spread the Gospel of the Kingdom. A new King has come with an everlasting kingdom. Those who do not submit allegiance to Him will die.

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Romans 6:23

Whom will you serve? The Crowns of this world? or The Everlasting Crown Whose Kingdom shall never fail and whose reign is not limited by death and time as the human reigns are. A President won’t save you. A preacher won’t even save you. Your possessions will not save you. Climate change will not save you. Everything on earth has an expiration date.

Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:

Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.

But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,

Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Ephesians 2:2-9

This is my testimony. Will it be yours too? Follow the Lord Jesus, who is either LORD, Liar, or Lunatic. If He was a Liar, Christians are the most miserable people on earth. If He was a Lunatic, so am I. Yet, history, archaeology, and so much more prove His resurrection was true. If He can’t be a Liar, if He can’t be a lunatic, He must have been telling the truth. He IS LORD. Everything He said about death, the destruction that is coming, and the chance of eternal life through Him, is true! Repent and place Jesus in control of your life. Accept everything the Bible says about Him as truth!

He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

John 3:18

Condemnation means death FYI.

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