End-Time Ethics

The_End_Is_Near

1 Peter 4:7-11  “End-Time Ethics”

7 Now the end of all things is near; therefore, be serious and disciplined for prayer. 8 Above all, maintain an intense love for each other, since love covers a multitude of sins. 9 Be hospitable to one another without complaining. 10 Based on the gift each one has received, use it to serve others, as good managers of the varied grace of God. 11 If anyone speaks, it should be as one who speaks God’s words; if anyone serves, it should be from the strength God provides, so that God may be glorified through Jesus Christ in everything. To Him belong the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen

Devil_Prowls_Like_Lion

1 Peter 5:8-11 

8 Be serious! Be alert! Your adversary the Devil is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for anyone he can devour. 9 Resist him and be firm in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are being experienced by your fellow believers throughout the world. 10 Now the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will personally restore, establish, strengthen, and support you after you have suffered a little. 11 The dominion belongs to Him forever. Amen.

Unity_In_Body_Of_Christ

1 Corinthians 12:12-31  “Unity Yet Diversity In The Body Of Christ”

12 For as the body is one and has many parts, and all the parts of that body, though many, are one body—so also is Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit. 14 So the body is not one part but many. 15 If the foot should say, “Because I’m not a hand, I don’t belong to the body,” in spite of this it still belongs to the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I’m not an eye, I don’t belong to the body,” in spite of this it still belongs to the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But now God has placed each one of the parts in one body just as He wanted. 19 And if they were all the same part, where would the body be? 20 Now there are many parts, yet one body.  21 So the eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” Or again, the head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 But even more, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are necessary. 23 And those parts of the body that we think to be less honorable, we clothe these with greater honor, and our unpresentable parts have a better presentation. 24 But our presentable parts have no need of clothing. Instead, God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the less honorable, 25 so that there would be no division in the body, but that the members would have the same concern for each other. 26 So if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. 27 Now you are the body of Christ, and individual members of it. 28 And God has placed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, next miracles, then gifts of healing, helping, managing, various kinds of languages. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all do miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in other languages?
Do all interpret? 31 But desire the greater gifts. And I will show you an even better way.

Ephesians_ChurchHome_ChurchEphesians1_7Victory_In_Jesus

Ephesians 1: 20-23 “God’s Power In Christ”

20 He demonstrated this power in the Messiah by raising Him from the dead and seating Him at His right hand in the heavens— 21 far above every ruler and authority, power and dominion, and every title given, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 22 And He put everything under His feet and appointed Him as head over everything for the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of the One who fills all things in every way.

sin_defeated

Colossians 2:4-15 “Don’t Be Deceived”, “Die To Self”, “All Trespasses Forgiven”

4 I am saying this so that no one will deceive you with persuasive arguments. 5 For I may be absent in body, but I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see how well ordered you are and the strength of your faith in Christ.

6 Therefore, as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in Him, 7 rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, overflowing with gratitude.

8 Be careful that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit based on human tradition, based on the elemental forces of the world, and not based on Christ. 9 For the entire fullness of God’s nature dwells bodily in Christ, 10 and you have been filled by Him, who is the head over every ruler and authority. 11 You were also circumcised in Him with a circumcision not done with hands, by putting off the body of flesh, in the circumcision of the Messiah. 12 Having been buried with Him in baptism, you were also raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.

13 And when you were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive with Him and forgave us all our trespasses. 14 He erased the certificate of debt, with its obligations, that was against us and opposed to us, and has taken it out of the way by nailing it to the cross. 15 He disarmed the rulers and authorities and disgraced them publicly; He triumphed over them by Him.


” He Lives (I Serve A Risen Saviour)” — Blue Rock Mennonite Youth

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40 thoughts on “End-Time Ethics

  1. Well, J.C., I have no idea how you keep coming up with all the excellent posts, Scripture, and graphics. Congratulations on a job really well done!
    Great Scripture reminder, especially at the very top.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Peggy . . . It’s the leading of the Holy Spirit. I say the BEST revelation is from the written Word of God, the Bible. James is given a topic by the Holy Spirit, with Scriptural References to “back up” the topic.

      Hebrews 4:12-13 ~ “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it pierces even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight; everything is uncovered and exposed before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.”

      AND, there is NO “churchian doctrine” or goofy teaching, when one sticks to the Written Word of God. I have seen WAYYY too much of both, where it is starting to look like I need to change my phrase of “churchian” to “Cartoon Christians”. . . . Where goofy stuff is coming out that is so SKEWED, it looks like a goofy cartoon spoof on “church”. . . LORD HELP US ALL!!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Me too, Vicki . . AND NOTHING surprises the Heavenly Father. We are absolutely a MESS down here and can NOT make it in these final days without the LORD.

        ANY of us can be deceived. Think about it:
        Adam and Eve were SINLESS and walking in the Garden of Eden with the Heavenly Father, in a world that did NOT have sin. AND THEY WERE DECEIVED!!!
        Now look at where we are in the timeline of history. Again, without the LORD, we will NOT make it down here. LORD HELP US ALL!!

        Liked by 2 people

  2. It is probably that HS intuition that Bill referred to in the earlier post. And Bill eccentricity in my book is nothing to be ashamed of. The bible said the Lord would make his people peculiar, that is standing out from the rest.

    I always thought that if you/Me are labeled eccentric my get go default position is a thought curve. General populations thought curve is like a flatline from a cardiac monitor, very little movement.

    A person who exhibits traits or peculiarities found in the bible is a curve that moves below and above the flatline, depending on the situation.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Great word picture, Stig-ove.
      I, for one, certainly don’t want to register “flatline.” That would very possibly imply a propensity toward spiritual death/hell. NO THANKS!

      Also, agreed, J.C. is led by the Holy Spirit in his posts. Awesome.
      May we all be led by the Holy Spirit!!

      Liked by 2 people

    2. I like the flatline analogy. Flatline is like groupthink, which today is mostly delusion, spiritual and intellectual death. We want Spirit-think and Spirit-life!

      I also like this analogy from Jesus:

      “The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” – John 3:8

      Those led by the Spirit move and flow according to an unseen power, but it’s very real and you see its effects!

      God bless, Stig-Ove

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yep there is even deeper thought to Jesus description there. In Tom Beardens book Energy from Vacuum there is an very descriptive picture of a ship at sail. The crew only sees when the sail bulges they know they have wind that moves them forward. But looking at a larger picture later you see a whole armada and the surrounding, the wind is everywhere. But we humans just as Jesus said dont know where it comes from or where it goes!

        The book of Enoch says angels at the 4 corners of the earth manage the wind. Radical science like Beardens says its zero point energy stemming from longitudinal electro acoustic waves in the medium.

        And there is more, but Jesus is right! Always was always will be!

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  3. Are You Ready? Jul 20, 2016 12:35 pm | Glynda Linkous

    Some of the changes I am bringing into your lives will take you by surprise, My children, and at first you may find them difficult to understand, but bear with Me, for I have a purpose in this. It will turn out for your benefit if you will only trust Me.

    I have placed people in your path for you to minister to, for you to influence. The world is under the enemy’s influence, but My people are able to influence the world if they will only try. So many sit back and say, “Let someone else do it.” Do not be one of these if I speak to you to go to the streets.

    Your reward is in My Hand and I will release it when I see you are ready. Are you ready?

    Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

    Isaiah 6:8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.

    1 John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Peggy, this confirms what someone (sorry forgot) said would happen……I believe about 2 years ago. Much prayer over this area

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  4. Daily Devotional — 07/21/16 — This is a continuation on the Topic of Salt, which they started on 07/20/16:

    THE VALUE OF SALT
    Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. Colossians 4:6

    At the end of His Beatitudes, Jesus stated that His followers were to be salt and light in the world. Salt was highly valued in the ancient world for four special qualities:

    Its purity – glistening white and coming from the sun and the sea, it was the most primitive of all offerings to the gods. If we are to be salt, we must be an example of purity. In the world, efforts to lower standards of honesty, diligence in work, conscientiousness and morality are going on all the time. The Christian must be the person who holds aloft the standard for purity of speech, conduct and thought. Words cannot be effective unless backed up by pure living.
    It was inexpensive but precious – Christians may seem few, insignificant and of no consequence to society. In 1 Corinthians 1:26-31, Paul addressed the early church with the concept that though few in numbers, lowly and unimportant, Christians are called to exercise godly influence over the whole of society.
    As a preservative to keep meat from going bad – salt rubbed into meat slowed the rotting process. Christians whose lives exhibit “blessedness” will have a preserving impact upon a society that, if left to itself, will rot and deteriorate. In Judges 9:45, Abimelech, after defeating the city of Shechem destroyed it and scattered salt all over it. Spiritually, this is what the Christian does when he takes his stand for God in society. He makes that society, be it his friends in school, his fellow students at college, his co-workers, or those with whom he plays sports, less fertile soil for other ungodly influences. We too can have a preserving witness, by being involved with this world gone wrong, if we will pay the price.
    To season food – salt brings out the distinctive flavor of food. The increase of God’s people should increase the flavor of life in many different ways. By His very presence, Jesus raised the spirits of people. There was a quality about His life that could not be explained in natural terms. As our verse for today says, our speech especially should be seasoned with salt. In this context Paul also talks about not grieving the Holy Spirit. Since speech is linked to a person’s spiritual state and has tremendous potential for building up or tearing down (James3:3-12), the constant reminder is to watch not only what is allowed to come forth but how it comes.
    By our presence, participation and penetration of society, in our daily contacts in our neighborhood and community, we are to bring the flavor of Christ to an unbelieving world.

    RESPONSE: Today I will check my conversation and be sure I season it with the salt of purity.

    PRAYER: Lord, forgive me when I grieve Your Holy Spirit by what I do and what I say and how I say it.

    Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Daily Devotional — 07/22/16:

    THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD
    “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.” Matthew 5:14-15

    Jesus is also the great light of the world (John 8:12). Those who believe in Him are brought out of darkness into His light (Colossians1:12-13) and in turn become lights also. In essence, they live the Beatitudes. What does light do?

    A. It exposes dirt – If Christians live holy and righteous lives, it will show up the unrighteous deeds of others (Ephesians 5:8-14). An example is that people who take bribes feel very vulnerable if there are others that don’t. Christians who work in government offices can, by their uprightness and integrity, diminish the amount of corruption just by their very presence and principles.

    B. It lights up the way so that we do not stumble – If Christians walk by the principles of the Word of God, their lives take on a higher purpose and direction than that of self. This will not fail to attract the attention of a watching world. The world then is faced with a choice—to accept or reject such a model. To those who reject, that light becomes darkness. But for those who accept, that light illumines their lives and they will not make wrong choices.

    C. It discourages works of darkness – More crimes are committed at night than in the daytime.

    D. It dispels fear – When light shines, the phantoms of the night just fade away. People who are afraid of the dark prefer to sleep with the light on.

    Light even enables discernment to be made—between friend and foe and between truth and counterfeit. It enables work to be done. Light enables plants to grow. Used in modern technology, it aids in telecommunications (fiber optics), helps to heal (lasers), and aids in publishing books.

    The light of the gospel also blesses in so many ways. And Christians who walk in it can in turn help others by sharing the knowledge they have concerning life, death, sin, salvation, God, the devil, heaven and hell. For these are the issues that plague man on a wide scale and for which they are striving to find adequate answers. The light will be recognized, not just in words, but in “good deeds” which lead others to praise our Father in heaven.

    In Kumasi, Ghana, African Enterprise has been organizing city-cleaning teams. Before an evangelistic campaign, Christians often ask government leaders if they can clean it up. Then they send out teams of people with makeshift straw brooms and pails of soapy water to scrub the city. Christian workers have cleaned hospitals, city parks, and government grounds before major outreaches to exemplify practical love.

    RESPONSE: Today I am determined to shine for Jesus—the true light of the world!

    PRAYER: Lord, I want my life to count for You and Your kingdom. Help me be a lighthouse for You.

    Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. A Watchman on the Wall — Posted: 21 Jul 2016 08:24 PM PDT

    “My redemption is a gift, a gift to and for all who will come empty handed to My cross to acknowledge their sinfulness and need of a Saviour, knowing that apart from Me there is no hope. Do not be unequally yoked with those whose hearts and mind care not for the things of God. False christ’ false gospels spreading like wildfire across this nation.

    Unity brings confusion – when unity has its root in paganism and false religions. Children of redemption must be wise as serpents, harmless as doves, doing what is good and right regardless of the cost. Soon the cost will become higher but you must count the cost now while there is still time.

    Quieten your spirit that you may hear the voice of the LORD. Remove all distractions. Listen for My still small voice, learn to discern truth from lie. Quickly will come the necessity to have great skill in discernment. My children have too long drifted aimlessly, following where they were led. Now is the time for you to listen and be obedient to My Words for they will be life to the hearer.”

    “America will soon erupt. Forces of evil ban together against My children. Do not be surprised nor confused. Be rooted and grounded in My Word so that when that time comes you can help the many who struggle for peace.

    Great will be the peace of those who belong to Me.”
    *****************************************************************
    “They will plunder your riches and loot your merchandise. They will break down your walls and destroy your pleasant houses. Your stones and timber and soil they will cast into the midst of the waters.” Ezekiel 26:12

    “And all thy children shall be taught of the LORD; and great shall be the peace of thy children.” Isaiah 54:13

    “Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.” 2 Thessalonians 3:16

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Hi Stig, Rabbi Glazerson may be a Mekubbal, meaning one who incorporates Kabbalistic teachings into Torah teachings. (The first five books of the bible) He teaches Gematria as well as the Torah. The mystical form of Gematria is a Kabbalistic practice as well as Talmudic , both being satanic worship sources exclusively….In other words, No Torah and vehemently rejecting all Torah. JCs posting of Colossians 2:8 may very well apply here. Gematria is numerology. Synonymous word terms. (calculating the numerical equivalence of letters, words and phrases) In general, numerology is a satanic application of mystical Satanism. Janet Yellen , the president of the federal reserve system uses numerology. She is a ZIONIST Jew, (Satanist and feminist) Janet is the 5th consecutive Zionist to chair the fed. She is a member of the society of numerology. Zionist jews are not jews whatsoever. They are the ones Jesus refers to as claiming to be Jews but are not. (The synagogue of satan) Jesus calls them. The religion of the state of Israel is Zionism. I think Rabbi Glazerson is in error incorporating the Zionist practice of gematria into Torah teaching. I want to be clear that I am not an expert in this field, and that I may be out of my element here. Thanks for reading this Stig. Bro Bill

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    1. Im thankful for that, L.A Marzulli is big on this bible code with his associate(Dont remember his name). Its good to have opinions and knowledge by others too. These guys are very smart but there is something missing in their countenance. Call it a hunch by yours truly. But when meeting christians in general i seem to resonate with people who has this kind of joy of being incorporated into them and flowing out to the rest around them.

      I would say a person exhibiting a real spark of life who freely admits he is a born again believer in Jesus is in most cases the real deal. Of course the devil can look like an angel of light so nothing is 100% sure.

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  8. Set Your Mind
    Jul 22, 2016 01:21 pm | Glynda Linkous

    Some of My children are not ready for the changes about to happen in their lives, though they think they are. My children, you must remember that the changes you see as negative may actually be what is best for you in My eyes. I know what is coming to your world, and how it will affect each one of you and I am making changes that are best for you so you can be most effective.

    Set your minds to obey Me in all things. Set your hearts to be humble under My hand, no matter what these changes bring, and you will do well in them. If you resist the changes, it will not stop them from coming, it will only make them harder for you to bear. If you resist Me, I will in turn resist you in your pridefulness.

    Set yourself to obey, and follow Me.

    Luke 9:51 And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem,

    1 Peter 5:6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

    2 Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

    Proverbs 3:5-7

    5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

    6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

    7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil.

    James 4:6 But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.

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  9. Daily Devotional — 07/23/16:

    PURIFIED BY THE REFINER’S FIRE
    He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the LORD will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness… Malachi 3:3

    It sounds easy to say we will always forgive others but what happens in your heart when your own son is brutally murdered. How can God make good come from that terrible event?

    For answers, we go (in two parts) to the southern Philippines where a decade ago Severino (Junie) Bagtasos, a young pastor, was sitting in the front row of his church in Alat listening to his sister conclude her Sunday message about heaven. Suddenly a man barged into the chapel. Two loud bangs were heard. Before anyone could make sense of what happened, Severino lay lifeless in a pool of blood. The killer made his escape as the distraught church members gathered around their pastor, killed instantly by gunshots to his chest and cheek.

    His mother, Purificacion, says, “I miss my son. Junie was the most caring of all my children. He would always offer help when I was cooking. He would often ask me and his father advice whenever he was beset with difficulties in the ministry because his church members were older than him. I was blessed by Junie’s sincerity and faithfulness in the ministry. Nothing could hinder him from going to his Bible studies. Heavy downpours and floods could not keep him from bringing the Word of God to those who needed to hear it. Death threats did not stop him.”

    There is not even a hint of bitterness as Purificacion speaks of that painful time. “During one of the services held at the wake of my son, my husband told the congregation, ‘We forgive the person who killed our son. If that person is here, I want you to know that we forgive you. If he is not here, and if anyone of you knows him, please tell him that we forgive him. The God we serve is the God of love and we want to show that love to you.’”

    But there were those who didn’t share these convictions. She adds, “Some of my husband’s relatives who were also Muslims got angry at him for saying this. They were eager to avenge Junie’s death. It’s part of their culture. But my husband restrained them and told them that our God is a God who also forgives. We chose to forgive our son’s murderer.”

    Purificacion shares what she thinks now was one of God’s reasons for her losing Junie. “After my son’s death, many Christians whose faith had grown cold were ushered back to the Lord.” Now after a decade has passed, she continues to see God’s hand in it all. She adds, “I believe Junie’s death was part of God’s plan. It was His way of opening the doors that have long been shut. You see, before the death of my son, Chinese-Tausug believers were scattered all over Jolo [their island in southern Philippines]. Many of them stopped attending the worship services.

    When my son began the work in Alat [a predominantly Muslim town], little by little these believers started to gather again. Junie, their pastor, loved them dearly and was truly passionate for the ministry. One by one they started coming to church again. Before long, these believers were on fire once more and got involved in the work of God.” God’s refining at work!

    RESPONSE: Today I will live in the awareness of God’s refining plan for His Kingdom’s expansion.

    PRAYER: Lord, purify Your Church and help me to accept whatever consequences this will have.

    Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Another Daily Devotional — 07/23/16:

    Spiritual Influence

    Near the end of every year they begin to surface, splashed on the covers of magazines and as lead stories on TV news and entertainment programs. You have seen them and so have I: the top-ten and top-hundred lists that tell us about the world’s richest, most beautiful, most powerful, and most influential people, spanning the worlds of business, sports, entertainment, politics, and media. Updated annually, some of these collections actually give last year’s ranking right next to this year’s just to let us know who has climbed the ladder or fallen from grace. Have you ever found yourself feeling bad for some celebrity or politician on the list who has tumbled from number twenty-five last year to number eighty-seven this year?

    Fashion police have a huge influence over style. They can make a declaration that bell-bottoms are back, and much of the population will head to the malls or dig in the back of their closets to find clothes they have not worn for years. In the same way, they can announce that square-rimmed glasses are out of style and countless people who loved their glasses a month ago will refuse to wear their suddenly “old-fashioned” eyewear.

    Sadly, the most important influence of all never seems to end up on the cover of magazines or featured on popular TV shows. It is spiritual influence — the ability of one person to impact another human being’s character, relationship with God, and even their immortal soul. Every follower of Jesus has been blessed with people in their life who have exercised positive spiritual influence. And, likewise, every Christian should also be using their God-given spiritual influence to impact the lives of others.

    This kind of influence is utterly unrelated to titles, positions, human status, or worldly achievements. It is based on how closely we are connected to the heart of God, how passionately we follow Jesus, and how openly we are letting the Holy Spirit control our words and actions. Spiritual influence is the primary way that Christian community grows; it is the pathway to spiritual formation.

    As we model spiritual maturity, teach each other, pray for one another, love, rebuke, and encourage, God will use us to leave his fingerprints all over what matters most to him — people. This influence, at the end of the day, is not so much about us as it is about the presence and work of the Holy Spirit.

    Spiritual influence weaves through friendships, family, the church, the world — every relationship we have. Pray for eyes to see those who have exercised spiritual influence on you, and remember with a grateful heart all they have done. Invite the Spirit of God to move within you in fresh, new ways so that you might be a positive spiritual influence on the people God has placed around you.

    © 2014 by Zondervan. Used with permission. All rights reserved. Visit JohnOrtberg.com for more about John Ortberg’s work and ministry.

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  11. Hi Friends, Our normalcy bias and cognitive dissonance are problematic to our Spiritual growth and our inability to comprehend truth. We all suffer from these two conditions…..and become victims of deception. Colossians 2:8 applies once again here. Man’s last days ethics differ greatly from God’s never changing ethics. Ethics-(moral principals) Morals- (a person’s standards of right and wrong.) Morals define a person’s character, while ethics stress a social system in which those morals are applied.

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  12. Daily Devotional — 07/24/16:

    THE OVERFLOW OF THE SPIRIT
    May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

    Yesterday we looked at the martyrdom of Severino (Junie) Bagtasos in the southern Philippines and we are listening to his mother, after ten years’ time, explain what she has learned about the good that God’s Spirit has brought from the painful loss of her dear son. Purificacion Bagtasos exudes the warmth of a mother and the spirituality of a woman of God. One would not think she’d experienced every mother’s nightmare. She overflows with peace, courage and hope.

    She says, “Through this tragedy, God paved the way for the distribution of the Kitab Injil [New Testament] in Jolo. A year after Junie’s death, I heard over the radio an Imam [Muslim religious leader] preaching using the Kitab Injil! What’s more amazing is that it is the Muslims themselves asking and distributing copies of the Kitab Injil, not the Christians!”

    In 1986, thousands of Gideon Bibles were burned to ashes in Jolo. Ten years later and after Severino’s death, a revived interest in the Bible grew among the Muslims in the whole island.

    She adds, “I remember during the wake of our son, the church was filled with Muslims for the first time. We even had to put in additional benches to accommodate those who were still coming. We took that opportunity to preach and declare Christ to them. One way or another the seed of the Gospel was planted in the hearts of all the Muslims gathered there. It will not return to the Lord void.”

    And so it was that Severino accomplished in death what he may not have accomplished in life—to preach Jesus Christ to as many Muslims in Jolo as possible.

    Secondly, Purificacion talks about vengeance. “We never filed a case because we know God will avenge us and that is where we stand. It also spared us from the long process and uncertainty of obtaining justice. God has seen what had happened and He knows my son’s murderer. I believe He will give us proper justice in His time.

    “I feel compassion for them,” Purificacion adds as she turns her thoughts to the Muslims they are reaching. Muslims believe that if you kill an enemy of Allah on the first day of Ramadan, the act will ensure your passage to paradise. Perhaps blinded by this belief, Junie’s killer chose to commit the crime on the very day Ramadan started that year.

    Purificacion never thought she’d outlive any of her children. She experienced dark and painful days. But she says, “The prayers and the letters of comfort sent by Christians around the world helped me and my family as we battled loneliness and depression over the loss of my son…We felt all the more encouraged to continue in the ministry God has entrusted to us.”

    Purificacion and her husband expanded their ministry after their son’s death. They took over the Bible studies Severino used to teach. They felt empowered. She concludes, “I don’t remember feeling fear. Instead of fear, we were filled with courage.”

    RESPONSE: Today I want my life to be so filled with God’s joy and peace that it will overflow to others.

    PRAYER: Remember to pray for ongoing strength and courage for Purificacion and her family.

    Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

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  13. I heard from a songbird today that B2 blog will be updated august 1.

    I promised the Red claysinger bird to be silent about. And since im so far away nobody will read this 🙂

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