Tag Archives: American Government

The Real Meaning Behind the Jewish Feasts

September 2015

There has been a lot of interest lately in the coming harvest feasts celebrated by the Jews and whether or not it has any implications for us as Christians and Americans. There have been many attempts to answer and decipher its meaning. America has seen tragedy during this time of year and some people have determined it was judgment from God. Because we as Christians have not come into a clear understanding of God’s ways, His movements have often eluded us.

It was during these seasons that I received salvation and pursued a deeper understanding of God and events that occurred during these seasons. The untimely death of a loved one got my attention as I wondered why. I became angry with a God I did not know. God did not have to vindicate Himself to me but He did because He is just that kind of God. He wants us to know that He is always righteous and good. With God’s help I was able understand death and work through the grief process. I began to observe a pattern in deaths around the end and beginning of a year. As a new Christian, the Jewish feasts were unfamiliar to me until much later so it was attributed to some phenomenal related to the end of the year. For years I observed these times of unusual blessings and loss and sought to understand. This mystery was opened up further and further as I grew in Christian knowledge and searched out the ways of God.

God is the same yesterday, today and forever. He established patterns in the earth and patterns for His interactions with mankind. God’s laws are universal but His ways are to be understood by His people. There are those that can break down the Jewish feasts in ways that I would not even attempt. My intent is only to understand what God wants from us and how we are to give it. Recently I wrote out a paper of my own research in this area entitled “The Offering God Wants When He Comes to Meet With Us.” Through this research I found my answer and maybe my summary will suffice others as well.

The History of the Feast Times

To understand God, we always have to go back to what He originally instructed us and see the progression of this truth through the scripture. Because God does not change. What He originally wanted, He still wants. It is our sin that has changed the equation. God originally came to meet with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden on a regular basis (Gen 3:8). We saw in Genesis where the sons, Cain and Abel, prepared offerings for God (Gen 4:3). We are not told how these offerings began, just that they occurred. God was pleased with one offering and rejected the other. This story reveals that God expects to meet with His people at set times and that He wants us to offer up something of value to Him at His coming.

In the wilderness, we saw that Moses instructed the Children of Israel in the ways of God and how to please Him. The Israelites were told that several specific times during the year God would meet with them, how they would present their offerings, and that these would be times of a great celebration.

Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the LORD empty: Deu16:16

The Israelites worked the land and were shepherds so their offerings to God were related to their labor during the year. God expected His people to recognize and bless Him at the end of their season of work where He had prospered them to have success. The combination of their work and God’s favor produced a crop or blessing of which God expected His credit, respect and reverence.

Man’s response to God’s expectation to be remembered at this time would show man’s appreciation and thankfulness for a good and gracious God. Cain, of course, did not show proper respect or appreciation and God was not pleased. What about us? Are we thankful? God has blessed America greatly. Are we showing thankfulness? God no longer expects animal sacrifice, but He does expect from His children thankfulness and reverence.

This coming season is about a tradition of God coming to meet with His children and bringing and receiving something of value in a time of thankfulness for all He has done for us. Will we have an acceptable offering? Certainly there will be praises and worship going up to God as we carry on church services but let us not forget other behavior.

America has recently thumbed its nose to God. The White House was lit up in rainbow colors to celebrate a practice that God hates. Our legislative branch is at war with each other. The Supreme Court has validated and made legal a homosexual life style that God specifically forbade. The nation has removed prayer and the Ten Commandments from public arenas, shunned the stranger, murdered millions of babies while the rich have decried the portion for the poor and many churches have rejected God’s truth and deceived believers. America that loves money and that has made money its god is now poised to elect a new president who appears to worship money. Shall God be pleased with what America has to offer Him when He comes to be celebrated in this season? I think not. America’s present state can be found in the book of Judges where the people were willing to say to anyone: “Come and be lord over us and take this mess under your hand.”

“Then the men of Israel said unto Gideon, Rule thou over us, both thou, and thy son, and thy son’s son also: for thou hast delivered us from the hand of Midian. And Gideon said unto them, I will not rule over you, neither shall my son rule over you: the LORD shall rule over you – Jdg 8:22-23.” (Read the rest of this chapter.)

“When a man shall take hold of his brother of the house of his father, saying, Thou hast clothing, be thou our ruler, and let this ruin be under thy hand…” Isa 3:6.

Perversion of the Season

Many false religious leaders have made a mockery of this time and required of God’s people a substantial money offering during these feasts. People looking for a blessing from God have been taken advantage of and some fallen into unbelief because of it. While God does expect us to give finances to the church that upholds His name and does His work, it is in the normal process of church obedience, not in a lottery to get future blessings. We must remember too, that there were some offering as mentioned by Isaiah that God did not want.

“To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the LORD: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting. Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them.” Isa 1:11-14  

These verses were followed up with the truth of what God really wanted: Isa 1:17 – “Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.” God is more concerned about our heart and right behavior (New Testament Commandments) than our offering up vain offerings in an attempt to appease Him. So, like with Cain, an offering from impure or insincere hearts will not be acceptable to God. Malachi 3 helps us to see also that God will not be pleased with our refusal to give godly pastors the portion that is rightly due for the work of the Lord. The New Commandments that Jesus gave us refer to a changed heart. A right heart leads us to do right with our money.

The Expectation of God’s Coming

This upcoming season is about God coming to see what we have prepared as an offering for Him. Will it be good works, a heart of love, fellowship with Him and our brethren, an appreciation and thanks for His truth and blessings or will it be our disrespect? God will come to some in blessings for their good done toward His name but He will appear as a judge to others for their disrespect of His Word and Person. How will we meet our God?

Jewish Traditions Applied to Christians

The Jewish feast of Rosh HaShanah is September 13-15, 2015. It is the Jewish New Year and marks the beginning of a ten-day period of prayer, self examination and repentance. Jewish tradition teaches that during the High Holy Days God decides who will live and who will die during the coming year. It is a time of judgment for mankind and reconciliation with God.

The next significant feast is Yom Kippur – Atonement celebrated on September 22-23, 2015. This feast begins at sunset of one day and ends at nightfall of the next. During Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur and in the days leading up to them, the Jews begin to examine their lives and repent for any wrong doings committed the previous year. This repentance is called teshuvah. Yom Kippur is when the high priest went into the Holy of Holies each year to make an offering for the sins of Israel. The Jews during this time would make amends with those they have wronged and make plans for improving their lives during the upcoming year. Many Americans follow this custom but observe it at our New Year’s Day which starts in January. Where our calendar has gone through worldly changes the Jewish calendar is more exact. Yom Kippur is the deadline for making things right and by its end, God’s “Book of Life” is said to be closed until the next year. It is a time of fasting, repenting and cleansing to renew our relationship with God.

Even though some Christians may have difficulty with these holidays because they represent Jewish traditions, we must realize that our Savior and Christian blessings come through the lineage of Jews and that we must understand both the past and the present to get a full understanding of our God. These practices that we saw exercised in the Garden of Eden were evidently established long before Abraham. Though we do not follow the laws of the Jews, we do obey the spirit of the law and some principles are timeless as are some commands God gave to the Jews, i.e. honoring God and putting Him first. We are admonished through the word:

“Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.” Pro 4:7

“But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.” 1Jn 2:20

“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Joh 8:32

God can move at any time in the life of a person but we are told specifically about His expectations at this time.  Whether for blessing or judging, we would do well to be ready for God’s presence in love and preparedness. Christians are not Jews but we serve the same God and we have been brought into a better relationship with Him through our faith in Jesus Christ. Christ actually taught His disciples about divine visitations and how to be ready for them (Mt 24-44). This is a time when we should reach out to and pray for all souls. While God comes to bless and fellowship with the obedient, the ungodly will find His judgment of sin. There are yet deeper meanings to the season for the believer in fellowship with the Lord and they should diligently seek God for His purposes. We have a standing appointment with the Righteous God over the earth and it is always a good idea to take some time to examine our lives and prepare it to be a time of celebration.

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Indictment of Caucasian Christianity

January 2015

For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more. Lk 12:48

We live in a world where there has been an abundant supply of everything needed for survival and comfort though power over resources has often fallen into the hands of the wicked. God ordained that the righteous would prevail in the earth and has had to overthrow the destructive forces of organized corruption time and time again. He placed the earth under the rule of the righteous with the intention that they would prevail against the wicked using His authority and power. If God is to prevail and He will, then righteousness must also prevail. Jesus Christ was sent into the earth to restore the knowledge of God’s righteous way for life on earth. That knowledge has come but men are still excelling in wickedness; and it is time for the righteous to make their voices heard.

At a time when technology and modes of communication dominate our society, one would not expect much hindrance in spreading the gospel to all parts of the world as Jesus commissioned His disciples. However, during this time of ingenious inventions and social ease, there seems to be little interest in propagating the true gospel to all men. There is an explosion of religions, many with man-lead organizations that suppress the Spirit of God and lead believers in a fruitless practice of religion. There is too little guidance that emphasizes the truth that Jesus Himself proclaimed and the gospel message has often been perverted to something that soothes rather than bring soul conviction. Nevertheless, Jesus proclaimed His church and the truth would prevail.

Christianity went into the nations after Christ’s crucifixion and has gone worldwide during the last millennium primarily by Caucasian Christians, who advanced exploration and exploitation of lands from Europe to China, to Africa and the Americas. The Caucasian people that made up the European continent, informally called white people, settled in lands around the globe. We have seen their Christian advancement of the gospel that started before the Christian crusades and that continues to the present day Sunday worship services.

It would be helpful here to study the term “Caucasian,” to understand where it originated and to whom it pertains.

The German philosopher Christoph Meiners (1747-1810) coined the term “Caucasian race” in his The Outline of History of Mankind (1875). The term “Caucasians” was used to relate to Meiners’ theory of only two races: Caucasians and Mongolians of which the Caucasians were considered more physically attractive than Mongolians because they had paler skin, were also more sensitive and more morally virtuous than Mongolians. Later he would make similar distinctions within the Caucasian group, concluding that the Germans were the most attractive and virtuous people on earth. (Writer’s note: And we know how this belief went terribly wrong through Hitler’s Holocaust that incinerated Jews.) Meiners put forth that Caucasians had the “whitest, most blooming and most delicate skin”. Europeans with darker skin he considered “dirty whites”, admixed, with Mongolian. Such views were regarded as the main difference between races. This view was shared by the French naturalist Julien-Joseph Virey, who believed that the Caucasians were only the palest-skinned Europeans.

Johann Friedrich Blumenbach (1752 –1840), a German professor of medicine and member of the British Royal Society, who is considered one of the founders of the discipline of anthropology expanded on Meiners’ popular idea and defined five human races based on color,…Caucasian as the “white race,” as well as Mongoloid as the “yellow race,” Malayan/”brown race,” Ethiopian/”black race,” American/”red race. In the 3rd edition of his On the Natural Variety of Mankind, Blumenbach moved skin tone to second tier importance after noticing that poorer European people (such as peasants) whom he observed generally worked outside, often became darker skinned (“browner”) through sun exposure. He also noticed that darker skin of an “olive-tinge” was a natural feature of some European populations closer to the Mediterranean Sea. Alongside the anthropologist Georges Cuvier, Blumenbach classified the Caucasian race by cranial measurements and bone morphology in addition to skin pigmentation, and thus considered more than just palest Europeans (“white, checks rosy”) as archetypes for the Caucasian race.

Meiners’ classification was not grounded on any scientific criteria and it was Blumenbach who gave it scientific credibility and a wider audience, by grounding it in the new quantitative method of craniology. (Source: http://www.ask.com/wiki/caucasian)

“Wait, do white people really come from the Caucasus? It’s highly unlikely. There are scholarly disagreements about how and when some of our dark-skinned ancestors developed lighter skin, but research suggests humans moved across the Asian and European continents about 50,000 years ago. Some anthropologists think that natural selection would have favored lightening mutations as humans moved away from the equator and faced a diminished threat from ultraviolet exposure. In this case, it’s possible that light skin would have evolved in many places independently.”
(Source: Do White People Really Come From the Caucasus?; How Caucasians Got Their Name, Derek Thompson, Aug. 2008, http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2008/08/do_white_people_really_come_from_the_caucasus.html)

The study of the term “Caucasian” helps us to identify the cause of so much racial tension, even in Christianity. So contrary to the sound, Caucasians do not originate from Caucasus, a land that exists between the Black and Caspian Seas. When we learn that this term was begun by some misguided individual who made up a race category using unchristian and unscientific reasoning in a prejudicial way, it should help us to overcome racial bias that originated from it and find a way to love all people. The Christian faith is intended to reveal the truth and destroy the lies of Satan, from whom dissension and division was birthed, and bring mankind back into the family of God. Whereas the Puritans sought to purify their religion and church, some men both past and present have sought to purify a race based on what they define as outward beauty. The Christian white church must come out of the closet, stand up and denounce this error and pattern that is destroying the unity of Christian believers.

The present day gospel is the story of promises God made to Abraham, the father of the Jews, and its fulfillment through the Immaculate Conception and birth of Jesus Christ, the Messiah. Both believing and non-believing Jews were scattered around the globe after the destruction of the Jewish Temple and this aided dissemination of the gospel message to the nations by the preaching of the early Disciples of Christ. Apostle Paul, a Jewish believer, was commissioned to take the gospel to gentile (non-Jew) nations where it was advanced through verbal and written forms to the masses.

Not only is the history of nations riddled with violence and bloody battles as people sought to gain controlling power over territory but the gospel stories are also riddled with violence as people used the bible to promote their own causes. King James I of England sponsored translation of the bible into a form suitable for people’s personal use on the newly invented printing press. European nations had embraced the gospel but there existed a hierarchical order that denied commoners access to the bible or equal rights and privileges. The Christian Church of England also practiced selling indulgences or receiving money from believers to escape the punishment of God for sin. This practice was protested by the German Catholic priest, Martin Luther, who launched the present day Protestant churches.

The Christian message in Europe migrated to America where there was to be liberty and freedom to worship God without fear of church or government retribution. History records the variety of beliefs and how they overcame these differences to become a unified people. Even those who did not confess Christ (Deists), nevertheless, believed God ruled over the natural elements. United across ancestral and faith lines, the colonists worked for the common good of the nation of America. They were no longer identified by their ancestral heritage but were called Americans and generally referred to as whites, in opposition to those identified by dark skin: Africans, Mexicans, Indian, etc.

It took thousands of years for the Caucasian race to arrive at the unity of government, religion and social life now enjoyed as one society in America. They overcame the inherited disagreements of their native lands and settled into a civility that allowed for the nation to prosper as one people. But unlike the sharing and commonality realized by the European immigrants to America; the dark-skinned American inhabitants from Africa, Mexico, Indigenous People of Native America, and the Islands were not received into this commonality. This latter group of people were considered as outsiders and unworthy of equal enjoyment of the great freedom and privileges of America’s white population. America’s white populations ostracized their own race that were considered poor, ignorant or trash. The Europeans immigrants from across the waters still have not escaped their desire for elitism, privilege or class. Once the height of pride is reached, only the intervention of God can correct it.

Christ died to start a kingdom that would promote a sharing of wealth and resources among Christian believers. Contrary to the European kingdoms, it specifically rejects the discrimination of God’s benefits to people based on any physical attributes. Christ was crucified so that all people could be welcomed into God’s kingdom and share blessings based on faith in Christ alone. This was Christ’s message to the world. The Day of Pentecost saw people of various race, tongues and ethnicity enjoy the outpouring of Christ’s Spirit and birthing into the commonality that is Christ’s kingdom and true Christianity.

This commonality of faith in Christ and acceptance of people without regard to their European heritage is the spirit that started the nation of America. These ideals are why so many lives were lost to free America from Europe’s control. Issues of slavery had already been settled by the Europeans before the colonization of America. Slavery had been found to be ungodly, inhumane and illegal in Europe as Christian evangelists sought to deliver the conscious of the people from the prejudice and elitist spirit of that day. European preachers brought their evangelism against slavery to the American colonies. It took many years and even war to break the practice of slavery in America but it was abolished. Abolition of slavery came by force of war but it was not a total victory for the conscience of Americans as the prejudice of class, religion and color continued to separate its citizens.

American churchgoers today enjoy a great outpouring of God’s power and spirit. The worship of God has grown from solemn ecumenical services to high praise and worship of Christ with joyful singing and dancing like never before. But this nation recently expanded the definition of equality to include all familial situations and sexual orientations that jeopardizes modern Christianity. The religion of Christianity has reached a zenith in America where one can find a Christian church on most any block and yet it barely resembles the faith of the early Christians. Democracy has replaced the priority of Christian practices in America. It is amazing that after more than a millennium of Christian history and the revelation of God that the European immigrants would slide back into the prejudice of pre-American days. The European immigrants fought to abolish slavery; but after their more than 200 years of independence are courting a desire to disregard the Constitution and return to a cast system. What a mockery to its inception and original commitment!

The Christian message of love that should have propelled the European immigrants from abolition of slavery to true American liberty for all has reached a roadblock and rapid decline in the United States. Truly the saying that one-who-does-not-learn-from-his-past-is-bound-to-repeat-it has proven itself true. The Caucasian people set free from past European bondage now seek to return to days of darkness. The Christian message did not deliver their souls. Can one have this darkness of soul and yet obtain heaven? The Commandment of God in the New Testament is summed up in loving God and loving one’s neighbor. Hating a whole race or several races based on outward appearance or other attributes is not the love God commanded. Many souls that left this life with battered, bruised or mutilated bodies will meet those yet to arrive.

Where there were great men of faith (who stood up against the racial bias of the past, there seem to be little representation of that bold faith today. We have seen in America religious men possessing great revelatory knowledge, wealth, technology, hi-tech means of communication and transportation who fail to champion the charge to share Christ’s heart to all people. America has had great revivals that cleansed it of poor judgments, prejudice and habits as it swept the nation. We have even seen a great renewal and revival being birthed through a black man named William J. Seymour in the Azusa Street Revival that brought together blacks and whites from near and far to worship Christ in Spirit and truth. Great church organizations and movements still exist today that were birthed through that revival even though they have settled back into denominations divided by color. A pursuit of wealth and comfort on earth has silenced the tongue and conscience of many charged with representing Christ to the multitudes. Early Christian evangelists traveling from Europe to America kept their charge to reach the lost even under threat of death. Some early evangelists died from sheer exhaustion or bad weather as they traveled exalting the message of Christ. But many of today’s mega churches with cushioned chairs, hi-tech PA systems, and air conditioning will not herald the truth of God’s word.

It takes the naked truth to break the stronghold of lies the devil wants the church to believe. Too few ministers are teaching the unadulterated truth of the Word. Christ taught that you will know the truth and the truth would make you free. But the truth has to be heard for one to choose it over the lie. Perverted messages given to churches cannot deliver the soul from the grips of lies, prejudice and deception so widely accepted in society. There is an army arising against our faith at this hour that is not afraid to die for what they consider to be truth. But many people seeking the real truth have not heard it in these churches. If you wonder why America does not repent of her many sins, consider what the bible asks:

“… and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! (Rom 10:14-15)

Christ spoke boldly as did Paul that not everyone proclaiming to be a preacher speaks truth. Paul called it another gospel. The bible has been distributed worldwide and Caucasian descendants of many nations, especially America, have been given greater liberty than any previous people to impact the world. This advantage can be used for good or evil. But to whom much is given, much will be required. Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin (Jas 4:17). We saw in history how white Christians sat back as Hitler, seeking a pure race of whites, prepared to wipe out the Jews in Germany. They felt no responsibility to intervene in the problem until it came to their own doorstep. The white Christian church in America is similarly ignoring problems of race, immigration, morality and social issues while focusing on a perverted gospel of compiling wealth. The urgency of Christ’s message has taken a back seat to the promotion of riches. But Christ did not come to preach wealth. His message was salvation, healing and deliverance from captivity of sin and an open door for all people to be birthed into God’s kingdom. Where Christ’s message promised prosperity, it was through obedience to God’s voice. It was never to put the goal of wealth ahead of the other requirements of Christ. Believers are called to first receive Christ’s empowerment to love their fellow man. God’s power of love can dissolve divisive problems as it did after the outpouring of the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost. Christ was sent into the earth to teach us the way of love. Remember God created a plentiful supply on earth, so Christ’s Sermon on the Mount did not focus on wealth but instead on man’s crucial need of salvation:

Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Mat 6:31-33

The congregants of the Church of England had many barriers to the truth that today’s church does not:

• The gospel was written in Latin and access restricted to leaders
• Many laypersons were not able to read and write.
• Personal bibles were not available for everyone to read.
• Many did not have the Holy Spirit.
• There was a lack of spirit-filled preachers.
• They were compelled by law to accept the state-run religion.
• They did not have liberty to protest their leaders.

Americans have liberty and a multitude of methods to understand Jesus’ teachings and escape religious lies. The information age has been very revealing of past and present inequalities. Once our sin is revealed to us, it is time to repent. God, the Father, nor Jesus ever told any people to seek things first and then try to love people but that is what is being practiced as Christianity. It is a lie straight from the pits of hell and Christians should know better.

America is not repenting because there are too few preachers preaching the real truth. It is the truth that sets people free not a white-washed gospel or inspirational messages of self promotion and well being. Christ never spoke to his disciples of promoting themselves above others or of compiling wealth for days of ease. That is a perverted gospel being preached to churchgoers in America. Everyone desires more wealth and churches are feeding people a message of prosperity rather than seeking the Savior. God demands to be first and will not take second place to any idol or money. So there are many people who have missed Christ while seeking wealth. Some of these churches may be mega but they are also poor. Its people are even poorer still while the truly poor in spirit are not helped and the unbeliever and world are still lost.

The Republican Party that fought to free the slaves through American laws are now turning to re-enslave them through enacting laws that restrict voter rights, employment crisis, black imprisonment, poor housing, abuse in policing, inadequate education, etc. The south that fought to keep Africans in slavery by force through war has now found a way to re-enslave African descendants by commandeering the legal system that once overruled them. And the irony of the whole matter is that African descendants, now physically free to choose, are insistent they have no home but America. Many have forgotten the lessons of history and are making foolish new commitments that are destructive. The threats against the nation today are leading the nation frighteningly close to the one world government that is prophesied for the end times.

The European immigrants that came to America to save their souls are now willing to give their souls to save a new version of America that has little resemblance to the past ideals of virtue and integrity. So what is the state of the souls of whites who practice racial hatred? God’s commandment is love and many whites are not showing that divine love for their neighbors who are black, brown, red or yellow.

A house is only as good as its foundation and America’s foundation has not only been weakened, but it has been ripped up and cast aside for a new virtual foundation based on the virtual American dollar. There is nothing new under the sun and God has already prepared His message for our current dilemma:

Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the LORD; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown. Jer 2:1- 2.

And I brought you into a plentiful country, to eat the fruit thereof and the goodness thereof; but when ye entered, ye defiled my land, and made mine heritage an abomination. Jer 2:7)

Thus saith the LORD, What iniquity have your fathers found in me, that they are gone far from me, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain? Jer 2:5

Yet I had planted thee a noble vine, wholly a right seed: how then art thou turned into the degenerate plant of a strange vine unto me? (Jer 2:21)

The leading scripture above was taken from Luke Chapter 12 where Christ warned his disciples: “Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees which is hypocrisy.” Today we would probably say, “Don’t drink the Kool-Aid.” But many have drunk the Kool-Aid of deception and refuse to deny the poison. Christ, Himself, warned His disciples of the deception of the religious leaders. No one is limited to the teaching of religious leaders today because every person can get the Word through the bible and God will give clarity. Jesus scolded the scribes and Pharisees for hypocritical leadership. Would He do any different to our leaders today? Jesus said,

“But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in (Mat 23:13 )”.

True Christians are those that follow Christ and His teachings. Everything outside of Christ is a lie and will not prosper in the end. Everyone will stand before God in judgment for the deeds done in their body, but greater punishment will go to those given the most as stated in Luke 12. Caucasians that came to America as European immigrants have risen to great privilege and wealth and they have come to realize together what they could not realize separately. But God has already spoken of people coming together as one people and setting out to do that which was evil and perhaps some remember the results.

And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: Gen 11:6

The nation of American must realize that the richness it has been privileged to obtain was for the purpose of doing good, not evil. This nation and Caucasians have been given every advantage and blessing and they will find no excuse before a righteous God. When it seems that God is no longer watching and there is liberty to do anything one chooses, consider: God removes His hand before allowing one to self-destruct (Rom 1:18, 24).

America derived its success through the transformation of various nations, people and beliefs but now pays no homage to any nation, people or god but itself. Everyone who graduates bestows honor on those that assisted the accomplishment. To credit no one, not even God, is the height of pride but God will not be denied His glory.

God said through Prophet Hosea:

Break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the Lord, till he come and rain righteous upon you (Hos 10:12).”

Jesus proclaimed:

“The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand, repent ye and believe the gospel (Mk 1:15).”

Repentance requires knowing you have sinned and changing the mind to turn from the wrong to the right.Truth can be difficult to receive because no one wants to admit error. The Holy Spirit said through Paul:

“All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God (Rom 3:23).” Jesus said: “There is none good but one, that is God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments (Mt 19:17).”

The indictment against the wicked of every nation, color, ethnicity or belief comes from God, Himself:

Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the LORD, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward. Isa 1:4

God shows us our sin out of love so we can correct it and walk in truth with Him.  The intercession of Christ through His death was atonement  to save all people. His blood was shed to atone (offer forgiveness) for every sin of every person who accepts it. Christ alone is the way out of the wrath to come. Jesus said, “Surely I come quickly;” therefore every believing soul should cry, Come Lord Jesus.

Note to my white brothers and sisters in the faith:  Efforts to always excel (even to the point of absorbing, assimilating and acquiring what belonged to others), may be evidence of a pride that will cause one to miss God’s ultimate calling for him. “And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all. (Mk 10:44). God promises to send His followers a prophet from among their own people.  One of your own prophets spoke truths that some thought to be foolishness.  I was blessed to receive of his impartations before he deceased. The biblical Jews missed their Prophet and Deliverer because of looking high when God often chooses to come through things that are low. May the hearts of the people become one in Christ as Jesus prayed to the Father and may we be ready at His coming.  (Jn 17:11).

The writer is first and foremost called of God as a prophet to the church and is the author of the book, “Elephant in the Room: The Economy and Whose Job It Is To Fix It?” As an African American of more than 50 years and 30 years as a Spirit-filled Christian, she is prepared by God to speak to today’s dilemma without the hindrances of church dogmas that conflict with the Word of God. For further information, go to: joycerebapayneministries.com, joycerebapayneministries.wordpress.com or livingit4real@hubpages.com. The book is available at: http://www.amazon.com, http://www.lulu.com or the author at: PO Box 3325, Durham, NC 27702, jrpmail2003@yahoo.com

Thanksgiving

The Thanksgiving holiday is a time for all Americans to give thanks to God. Most Americans will celebrate it with their own traditions. It is a day when people gather with their loved ones and reflect on how thankful they are for their good fortune over the past year. Thanksgiving Day traditions have departed from some of its true meanings in a similar manner to some other holidays that have given over to popular practices of celebrations like Black Friday shopping sprees, consumption of foods, parades and of course, football games with beer. Sunday church sermons, no doubt, still remind all of us to be thankful for our blessings.

The original meaning of the Thanksgiving holiday was a time to be thank God and remember with gratitude the kindness of the Indians that saved the first pilgrims from starvation as they sought to occupy the new land discovered by Christopher Columbus. The pilgrims were dying of disease and starvation but the Native American Indians that occupied the land showed them how to plant food for survival. The pilgrims and the Indians celebrated the success of their collaboration with a festive dinner together that is remembered centuries later in our present day Thanksgiving Holiday. As this holiday has progressed through the centuries, the part that is seldom mentioned in public is the role of the Indians. It was the generosity of the Indians that saved the pilgrims who survived to start this powerful nation.

“All the summer there was no want; and now began to come in store of fowl, as winter approached, of which is place did abound when they came first (but afterward decreased by degrees). And besides waterfowl there was great store of wild turkeys, of which they took many, besides venison, etc. Besides, they had about a peck a meal a week to a person, or now since harvest, Indian corn to that proportion. Which made many afterwards write so largely of their plenty here to their friends in England, which were not feigned but true reports. (William Bradford, Of Plymouth Plantation: S.E. Morison, ed. Knopf. N.Y., 1952. p 90)

Forgotten also is the fact that the generosity of the Indians was repaid by being pushed off their land and onto reservations where many died of starvation and disease. It is amazing how our nation has selective memories of it history and promotes only that which reflect well on it. Does anyone care how the Indians feel about this day of celebration?

“Not everyone sees Thanksgiving Day as a cause for celebration. Each year since 1970, a group of Native Americans and their supporters have staged a protest for a National Day of Mourning at Plymouth Rock in Plymouth, Massachusetts on Thanksgiving Day. American Indian Heritage Day is also observed at this time of the year.” (http://www.timeanddate.com/holidays/us/thanksgiving-day)
America has much to be thankful for and should rightly thank God for its success in the world. God, however, “…desirest truth in the inward parts (Ps 51:6).” Not only has America downgraded thankfulness owed to God in the Thanksgiving holiday but the nation seems to have also forgotten that there were many others that played a major role in the development of the nation. It is ironic that this nation, which was settled by European immigrants, has frown on Native American Indians, immigrants from other nations as well as the rights of other non-Caucasian people in America and particularly those of African descent that were brought here, not by choice but by force. Many groups of people that were oppressed during these first centuries also celebrate Thanksgiving as an American tradition. It is well to celebrate one’s good fortune but it is a shame to be so disingenuous as to sanitize history with only selective facts.

There have been many nations that rose to great success in the world but there is a Great Eternal Force that has seen nations come and nations go. There is a Sovereign God who promotes nations for His glory. Those nations that are true to God are blessed of Him to enjoy longevity and success.

Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance. Psa 33:12

The LORD executeth righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed. Psa 103:6

God, however, remembers the past and works on behalf of the downcasts that have been overlooked or pushed aside by the mighty, as He did in assisting the first American settlers that were the outcasts of Europe. God is a God of truth who reveals hidden things and brings them to the light. God’s purpose in having the Israelites set up monuments and holy days was that they would not forget their history or indebtedness to God and others that help them gain victory. God has a way of bringing us back to remembrance of those things that have been covered over, hidden or pushed aside.

Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God. Co 4:5

The nation of America is now experiencing a time when it is being brought back into remembrance of past sins and wounds that have not healed. America loves it present success and does not want to be brought into remembrance of darker days. But God does remember those dark days and those oppressed by the strong. He has planned for all people to be brought into the His bountiful blessings. The powerful never want to relinquish its power but the oppressed have a right to turn to and make a demand on God for restitution and restoration. Being a just God sitting in judgment over all people, He will always bring forth righteousness.

It is at times like the Thanksgiving holiday that people should be brought into remembrance of history and the true meaning of a holiday or holy day. Thankfulness is a natural outcome of performing labor and receiving its benefits. But unrighteous rewards never give peace. Those that choose to forget the history behind holidays need to be reminded of their true meaning. It was God that set aside times and monuments to bring people back into remembrance of past events so that we could walk in truth rather than hypocrisy.

Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation. Joe 1:3

And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you, What mean ye by this service? That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the LORD’S passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshipped. Ex 12:26 -27

It is important to have a day where we reflect back and are thankful for our good fortune, but let’s not forget the God who made it possible and to do it in truth and sincerity. Part of America’s Thanksgiving celebration is the practice of providing for the poor and needy on this day. But God will greatly bless America is she reflects on the truth of why America enjoys its good fortune and recognize all those who helped make it possible.

Father God, help us to be truly thankful for all your goodness towards us. Remind us to show our thankfulness through the deeds we do for others. Preserve and keep us in health, provisions and peace for the days to come. These blessings we ask the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.