Hooray for President Obama

“Libya may not be in America’s vital interest, but it is in America’s values.”  Well spoken, Mr President.  All Americans should unite behind our president when he does what is right.

The president led us into Libya to prevent a bloodbath.  He claimed perhaps tens of thousands of innocent lives have been saved from cruel atrocities under his leadership.  (At this point I  am not addressing the president’s motives or the constitutional questions; only that he took decisive action.)

Now, Mr. President, do the same in America.  Tens of thousands of innocent civilians are being subjected to cruel atrocity and death by abortion every month.  You claimed it took only 31 days to bring together the coalition to bomb Libya.  In that same 31 days 93,000 babies were murdered in the US using medical procedures.

Your leadership proved instrumental in stopping a bloodbath in Africa.  Now lead the way to stop our bloodbath at home.

How Can We Know if We Love God?

Praying in tongues generally results in greater love for God.  If you doubt it, ask a tongues-speaker!

So how does anyone know if he loves God or not?   I used to question myself about this a lot.  Surprisingly, there is a non-subjective test to help us find out if we love God.   Jesus said in John 14:21, “If you love Me, you will keep My word.” That’s plain enough.  Yet to emphasize the matter, Jesus followed up, “He who does not love Me does not keep my words.” (John 14:24)

The matter seems important to Jesus.  He keeps on topic. “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” (John 14:15)

Since Jesus used the term “keep” in all 3 sentences, it’s worthwhile to check out the meaning.  The Greek word is tnreo in verb form.  It means to attend to carefully, to take care of; to guard, to observe, to watch over; to preserve.  It suggests a present possession or ownership of something. In other words, to keep God’s word means we are really doing what the Bible says, not just reading it.

This  raises the question, “Are we having a regular (daily) time with Jesus in God’s Word (the Bible)?  To keep his word means to guard our attitude toward the word and attend to it.  It means to store up the word and value or treasure it.  In earlier times, homes and shops had a “keep” or lock-box for valuables.  Are we “keeping” God’s word in our hearts, minds and mouths?

Speaking in tongues keeps us filled with the Holy Spirit.  Tongues release an inner warmth, an intimacy with God that feels good.   On the other hand, obedience to God’s instruction is outward and objective.  Both the Word and the Spirit help us to love God .  Knowing we love Him gives confidence.

OK, God lovers–Sound off!  How do you know that you love Him?

Nine Things the Bible Says about the Environment

The Bible speaks hundreds of times about the earth.  Those who understand the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the world’s greatest environmentalists.  Care for the environment is a Christian issue

1)      God created the earth and the heavens.  (Genesis 1:1)  The earth is His “baby” so to speak, and exists only because of His will and pleasure. (Revelation 4:11 KJV)

2)      The earth belongs to God.  The earth is the LORD’S, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.  ( Psalm 24:1)  All the rights of ownership belong to Him.

3)      God commands humans to take care of His earth.  (Genesis 1:28)  Dominion means “to take charge of, to rule over.”  Here He delegates His ownership to humans and makes us responsible to protect and care for the earth.  By this He mandates some of us to become chemists, biologists, geologists, agronomists, farmers, etc.

4)      God made a covenant with the animals.  (Genesis 9:8-17)  Among other things, the rainbow is a sign of God’s commitment to care for animals of the earth.

5)      The earth is vitally important to God and His purposes.  (Romans 1:19-20)  God values creation.  Visible creation reveals the invisible God.  Everyone who claims, “I see God in nature,” knows this.  But God’s purpose in nature is greater than a good feeling or general revelation.  His attributes, namely His “eternal power and divine nature” are “clearly seen” and “understood” through the created world.  As a result, nature has an evangelistic purpose: to reveal God Himself.  This environmental witness in nature is so strong that those who deny God’s self-revelation come under divine judgment:  “So they are without excuse.”

6)      God will destroy those who destroy the earth.  (Revelation 11:18)  No clearer statement of God’s care for the environment can be made.

7)      The Bible guards against environmental extremes.  Animal sacrifices and the eating of meat were enjoined.  The tabernacle was covered with animal skins.  Gold and precious stones will be part of the New Jerusalem.  Natural things are to be used, not avoided.  The myth of overpopulation is commonly based on “saving the environment.  But the God of the Bible commands, “Be fruitful and multiply; populate the earth abundantly and multiply in it.”  (Genesis 9:7)

8)      The earth will be destroyed.  This present earth is not eternal.  (2 Peter 3:10, Revelation 16:3)

9)      The earth will be redeemed.  God’s plan includes restoration of planet earth and all the heavens.  (Revelation 21:1 and 5; Romans 8:21)

What does the Bible tell us about environmentalism?  In short, color your Bible cover green–God is the Chief Environmentalist of the Universe.

Nine Things the Bible Says about the Environment

The Bible speaks hundreds of times about the earth and environmental issues.  This is a Christian issue and the church should own it.  Those who understand and obey the Old and New Testaments are the world’s greatest environmentalists.

1)      God created the earth and the heavens.  (Genesis 1:1)  The earth is His “baby” so to speak, and exists only because of His will and pleasure. (Revelation 4:11 KJV)

2)      The earth belongs to God.  The earth is the LORD’S, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.  ( Psalm 24:1)  All the rights of ownership belong to Him.

3)      God commands humans to take care of His earth.  (Genesis 1:28)  Dominion means “to take charge of, to rule over.”  Here He delegates His ownership to humans and makes us responsible to protect and care for the earth.  He mandates some of us to become chemists, biologists, geologists, agronomists, farmers, etc.

4)      God made a covenant with the animals.  (Genesis 9:8-17)  Among other things, the rainbow is a sign of God’s commitment to care for animals of the earth.

5)      The earth is vitally important to God and His purposes.  (Romans 1:19-20)  God values creation.  .  Everyone who claims, “I see God in nature,” knows visible creation reveals the invisible God.  But God’s purpose in nature is greater than a good feeling or general revelation.  His attributes, namely His “eternal power and divine nature” are “clearly seen” and “understood” through the created world.  As a result, nature has an evangelistic purpose: to reveal God Himself.  This environmental witness in nature is so strong that those who deny God’s self-revelation come under divine judgment:  “So they are without excuse.”

6)      God will destroy those who destroy the earth.  (Revelation 11:18)  No clearer statement of God’s care for the environment can be made.

7)      The Bible guards against environmental extremes.  Animal sacrifices and the eating of meat were enjoined.  The tabernacle was covered with animal skins.  Gold and precious stones will be part of the New Jerusalem.  Natural things are to be used, not avoided.

8)      The earth will be destroyed.  This present earth is not eternal.  (2 Peter 3:10, Revelation 16:3)

9)      The earth will be redeemed.  God’s plan includes restoration of planet earth and all the heavens.  (Revelation 21:1 and 5; Romans 8:21)

What does the Bible tell us about environmentalism?  In short, color your Bible cover green–God is the Chief Environmentalist of the Universe.

Glossolalia: Sue Cox’s Report of Praying in Tongues

Sue Cox’s Story in her own words (Used with permission)

Note: Sue Cox relates her experience with glossolalia (praying in tongues) and tells of the benefits in her life. She was born in Singapore and immigrated to the United States. Sue is a businesswoman in Muscatine, Iowa and serves as president of the local Aglow chapter. This report of glossolalia is in Sue’s own words with only minor editing.

I have been a Christian since 2005, my first encounter with “tongue” speaking was in February, 2007 at the Church of the Living Water. It was a very strange experience, it was like my mouth was no longer belongs to me but something so very powerful took control of it. The language that came out of my mouth was so foreign to me (yet I speak three different languages and several Asian dialects) I do not understand a word that came out of my mouth. It was totally supernatural!

Ever since that day, I have been growing tremendously in spirit and I have been praying in tongues all these years. I loved it!!

My experience with praying in tongue (glossolalia) has brought me to several supernatural encounters with the Lord Jesus. One particular experience I so remember was, I was in such a painful situation and that I needed strength, hope and help. The pain was so powerful that fear took over my spirit, I was struggling to stay calm and trying to pray in senses and I remember the story of Jesus calm the storm. But the fear was over powering me and I literally felt like a lump of marshmallow, my mouth was dry and I was trembling with fear. I couldn’t even speak a word not to mention praying in words.

I remember once my church brother told me “if you don’t know how to pray, just pray in tongues”. I began to pray in tongue and on and on I was praying in tongue and in spirit. Next thing I know, I was in the Garden of Gethsemane (in spirit). I saw Lord Jesus in His agony and pain. He was asking God to let the cup pass if possible. I felt His heart beat, I felt His pain, His fear, His agony. For a moment I was in Him and I felt it all. During this experience, I realized that I was communicating with God in tongue, a heavenly language. It was an actual communication except it was in tongue and I don’t understand a word that I said, I saw myself spoke through Lord Jesus and pleading for God’s mercy and grace. Then I heard the Lord said “Father, Thy will be done and not mine!” I said the same but this time in English, and then, in that very second, all my fear, pain, suffering and agony just lifted up and disappeared. Glossolalia set me free by the power of God!

I continue to pray in tongues today. I also came to recognize that there are many different ways of praying in tongues such as pleading, communicating, praising, warfare and I have also heard some people “chanting” in tongues.

But as for me, praying in tongue is a way I communicate with God the Father in Heavenly Language.
Nothing brought me closer to God then spends time with Him and communicate with Him in His Language.

I encourage all believers to do the same. It is simply Amazing!

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Tongues –Jesus’ Blood Paid the Price

Jesus gave a free gift— tongues. How much did it cost Him? The answer may surprise you.

Would you think about this with me? Tongues are a free gift (charisma) for us, yet what price did Jesus have to pay to send this gift? Far more than most of us have ever imagined. “But this He spoke about the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.” (John 7:37) Jesus had to be glorified before He could send the Spirit. Glory comes through suffering, as you probably know. Suffering produces glory (Romans 8:17).

It was with every blow of the whip master’s lash that Jesus paid for our gift. Each spit, each mock, each ridicule preceded the gift. Every criticism, every humiliation, every prick from the crown of thorns paved the way for our gift of the “unknown language”. The nails, the thirst, the scorn, the hate, the rejection were all a part of the pre-determined plan of the Father for the death, resurrection, glorification of Christ and His subsequent release of the Spirit on Pentecost.

Without the crucifixion, there would be no Pentecost. Jesus had to be glorified through suffering and death before the Father could release the long-awaited promise of the Spirit at Pentecost. What was the first recorded act of the glorified Christ in heaven? “Therefore having been exalted (glorified) to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He has poured forth this which you both see and hear (i.e., glossolalia).” (Acts 2:33)

In John 19:34 we read “there came out blood and water.” The blood was actual blood with X and Y-chromosomes. The water was literal water from the blood breaking down at death. The blood and the water also carry spiritual significance. The blood is the cutting of the blood covenant by which we overcome Satan. The water speaks of the Holy Spirit (John 7:37). Jesus paid the blood price for the outpouring of the Spirit and the gift of a prayer language.

May no one ever despise the price Jesus paid so He could pour out His chosen gift of tongues! May no one ever despise the cost to the Christ so we could enjoy His presence in this precious charisma!

Tongues –Jesus Paid the Price
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Insomnia? Try Praying in Tongues

Insomnia?  Will praying in tongues help?

Among the common reasons for sleeplessness are worry, lack of exercise, diet (think caffeine), sickness, overwork and troubled relationships.  There’s no one cure for all.

Recently I woke up in the night and couldn’t go back to sleep.  After awhile that Scripture about “tongues brings rest” crossed my mind.  “Why not try it?” I mused.  “Maybe praying in tongues will help me fall asleep.”  I started praying silently in my God-given tongue.  It took awhile, but pretty soon I woke up. . . it was morning!  It worked.

Isaiah the prophet wrote,”Indeed, He will speak to this people through stammering lips and a foreign tongue, He who said to them, ‘Here is rest, give rest to the weary,’ and ‘Here is repose'” ( Isaiah 28:11-12).  Then Isaiah added this kicker, “. . .but they would not listen.”

St Paul applied Isaiah’s words to speaking in tongues when he wrote his letter to the Corinthian church  (I Corinthians 14:21).

It’s all about relationship–relationship with the Lord of life, Jesus Christ.  Tongues connects the speaker with the Soother, the Calmer, the Giver of rest and repose.  There’s no magic in the tongue; rather, the soothing comes from the Giver of all good and perfect gifts in whom there is no shadow or inconsistency due to change.

Suppose you need to get groceries and you live a mile from the store.  You could get to the market by any number of ways.  You could walk, drive, take a bus, taxi or bicycle.  Some ways would be better than other ways depending on weather and circumstances.  The same with relief from insomnia.  Reading a book, ordinary prayer, drinking milk, changing socks might all help insomnia.  Praying in tongues, a form of Biblical meditation, is just one way.

Warning:  Don’t apply ideas about speaking in tongues mechanically.  We can’t always expect a simple cause and effect relationship as in the case of “tongues leads to sleep” or “tongues always bring rest.”  No, the Spirit can’t be reduced to mechanical predictability.  Sometimes tongues bring peace, sometimes energy.  Sometimes rest, sometimes an emotional stirring.

Most accurately we can say using the gift of tongues stirs the Spirit of God, and God gives us what we need.  If we need rest, God gives rest; if we need inspiration, inspiration is what we get.

Praying in Tongues is like Omega 3’s in the Diet

Praying in tongues is like omega 3 fatty acids because it affects every part of the user’s life.

For many years I raised grassfed lamb. The health benefits of grassfed lamb amaze the world. There’s something in the meat of grassfed lamb called omega 3 fatty acid. Omega 3 fatty acids help, prevent or cure a host of diseases known to man–diabetes, cancer, skin problems, depression, etc. How can one substance affect so many physical, mental and emotional symptoms? Because omega 3’s work at the cellular level. In other words, they affect every cell of the human body. No cell is not influenced by omega 3.

Tongues are like omega 3 fatty acids because their use affects every part of life. Healing, revelation of creative ideas, inspiration, motivation, you name it. Even the physical body is affected. Tongues are not limited to spiritual benefits; emotions and the immune system get their share of the results. Why? How does this work? Because tongues affects the spirit of a man. Healing, revelation, inspiration, etc. all begin in a man’s spirit. Affect the spirit and you influence the man. No part of man, no aspect of human life is left unaffected by use of the gift of tongues.

 

Meet Mark Anderson

Hi! I’m Mark. I’ve been pastoring the Church of the Living Water in Muscatine, Iowa since 1976. For the past years I’ve also been shepherding sheep–the four-legged kind.

Now the switch comes!

I’m changing some priorities. After about 15 years of direct marketing grassfed sheep, I’m closing out that aspect of my life.  (I  still raise sheep, but don’t  take the time to direct market them.)  I want to concentrate on eternal priorities. My calling is pastoring, writing and prophetically serving churches.

I’m moving from shepherding sheep to shepherding people and churches.