Tag Archives: testimony

We Are His House

Hebrews 3:1-6

Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;

Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.

For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the house.

For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God.

And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;

But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.

What things do you consider when making decisions about your readings in the Bible? 

Some consider the Greek and Hebrew original words and how they are used, or what the inside of the meaning is.  I always find this fascinating.  They are such colorful languages, and so intricate.  One word can have a very specific meaning, and it can be quite different than we think it would be.  A word that comes to mind as I type is comely.  Looking at that word makes me think not much to look at.  But in reality, it means lovely, and is often translated that way.  Word studies are good for in depth knowledge.

Others look at the times and settings of the things that are taking place.  What was lkife like back then?  How were woman treated?  What did the lay of the land teach about the subject matter being shared in the parables of Jesus?  How as society different then than it is today?  These are all questions that can be asked, and there are plenty of resources that can teach us the answer, adding to our knowledge of the intent of the scripture in certain places.

Others delve into prophecy.  They go through the Bible with a fine-tooth comb, trying to figure out what it’s going to be like in the last days, and what heaven will be like.  What prophecies are coming true today?  What are they leading up to?  How can we know these are the last days?  The books of Daniel, Ezekiel and Revelations are woven like a fabric by these studiers of eschatology.  An interesting tapestry it is, too!

I imagine people were caught up with these things in the days this passage was written.  The writer directs them to one place, to one thing to consider, and that I Jesus.  The important thing for us, if we venture off into any of these studies to gain knowledge, is to keep our eyes set on Jesus.  After all, it is through Him we became partakers of this heavenly calling.  Without His sacrifice, we would be lost and bound for the devil’s hell.  Without His mercy and grave, our lives would be a total mess and we would lose the salvation we gained.

The writer points out that Jesus was more important the Moses.  The Jews revered Moses.  He led them out of Egypt and slavery, help them endure the wilderness and all it’s struggles, became the spokesman for God to the people and gave them the law.  He was a leader like to other throughout the history of the nation.  It is right that they held him in high regard.  For the writer to say Jesus was more important than Moses was a statement that was hard for them to understand!  If not for Moses, they would still be in Egypt’s strong grasp.

But Jesus had a higher calling.  He does not lead us out of a country, but out of our former lives as slaves to sin.  He does not write the words of the law in tables of stone, but writes them in our hearts with parables and sermons bringing God’s love into our lives.  He does not lead them through a physical wilderness, but through the trials and tests of our lives.  He does not take us to a physical promised land, but he opened the doors of heaven for us.  Jesus was so similar to Moses in so many ways.  He is the one we should look to at all times!

Moses’ house was on this earth.  The house he built was the nation of Israel, free and in their own land.  He brought them out of a house of bondage and brought them into a house flowing with milk and honey.  He stood up to the enemy and proclaimed curses that eventually made the enemy release them.  He took Abraham’s children and made them Israel’s nation!  The house he built was on this earth.  Their welling place was of the flesh.

Jesus builds a spiritual house within us.  He crafts it with his own hands, because he made all things to begin with.  He is the master potter and we are his clay.  He molds us and shapes us into the vessel he desires us to be, if we allow Him to.  He uses every trial, every test, every lesson to help us see our path and walk in it.  He defeats the enemy at every turn, and works in the quiet of the day to bring us closer to Him.

We must gold on to the promises of God and Jesus.  We must hold on to the teachings that give us hope and help us to see what righteousness really looks like.  Moses was a great example, and built a strong nation, but what Jesus is building is far greater.  He is building me.  I am His abode.  He abides in me and I in Him.  Every day He will furnish this house with love, joy, peace, and all those other fruits of the Spirit. He will give me the words to say and the direction to walk.  Because He lives in me, in this house, I must honor this house and keep it holy.  When I do that, He will always keep me, pick me up when I fall, and show me the way to get back on the path.  I am so glad He loves me!

Make Full Proof of Your Ministry

2 Timothy 4:5

 

But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry

What good is our ministry if there is no evidence, no proof, that other people see in us? Everything we do and say should reflect the ministry that God has placed within us.  And all of us have a ministry! Don’t for one minute think that you are exempt.  If God has saved you. He has called you.  And if he calls you, He places within you talents to reach other people.  Paul puts in this way in Romans 8:30:

30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

Whom he calls he justifies and glorifies.  What that means to me is that God will place within us a form of glory that can’t help but touch other people.  The glory of the Lord can be seen by the unbeliever as much as the believer.  When we walk in this glory, it reaches beyond our human flesh to minister to others.  There is a caution I want to give, though.  We must be very careful not to raise up in pride because we carry this little bit of glory within us.  It would be easy to give in to that pride, but we must not. That will destroy the ministry He has given us.

Let’s take a closer look at the four things Paul tells Timothy to do in this powerful verse.

  • Watch in all things.  This word watch is an interesting one.  The Greek word is nepho, which in most cases is translated “Be sober,” meaning not intoxicated.  But the deeper meaning is to have presence of mind, to always keep your mind clear of things that would distract one form the ministry.  The enemy of our souls can use anything to distract us and keep us from being the light we are supposed to be.  In my opinion, 2020 was a year he used science and politics to distract many Christians from the ministry of saving souls.  The Coronavirus brought fear to the hearts of billions of people and caused many a preacher to change their message from salvation to end times theology.  There were more people preaching about the last days than I have ever seen in my 69 years on this earth.  We do not, nor never will, know the time or day when Jesus will return.  We can look at the signs, and warn people He is coming, but that is not the important thing.  The important thing is that people get saved.  That they trust their lives to Jesus. But instead of preaching the love of God, many preached the wrath of God.  It is by His love that people get saved.                                                                       The political arena was also quite disturbing.  So many jumped on the bandwagon of a rigged election and fake news that it was confusing.  But God is not the author of confusion.  Our job, our mission, in times of uncertainty is simple.  Be a tree beside still waters that will not be moved.  Stay in the word and out of the jungle of political rhetoric.  God needs us to stay sober minded, cautious of the ways of the world, but temperate in what we say and do. The church in many ways lost it’s bearing in 2020, and we need to get back to the place where we are watchful and wise.  Adding emphasis, Paul says in ALL things.  I could preach for a long time on all, but let’s just say there should be nothing we are confused or conflicted about.
  •  Endure afflictions – This is actually one word in the Greek and it means exactly what it says.  It is translated this way and also endure sufferings.   The Greek seems to point not only to those things that come against us to set back our ministry, but also things of malicious intent that may never harm us personally, but will have a negative affect on our ministry.  Things like gossip and backbiting people would fall into this category.  We must not let our anger rise up, or try to get revenge or engage in any activity to get back at those who would commit such acts.  The Gospel is all about Christ’s love.  We must always show that love, even if a storm is raging against us.  This dedication to endure to the end will show others we live in real faith and that will bring people to Christ.  The fruit of longsuffering as aptly worded in the KJV.  Suffering long with wrong is a hallmark of the best of saints. On to of that, nothing, and I mean nothing, should offend us.  It is only pride that can get offended.  Only pride can get steamed up over something someone says or does against us.  When I was at Pure Life Ministries back in 2008, there was a saying on the wall that I wall always remember.  It said “If I get offended, what miserable piece of flesh is still in me that I can get offended.”  We must guard against allowing people to get under our skin and make our love not as effective.  Endure. or work through, and type of affliction without getting offended.  Your testimony will be greatly enhanced when you do this effectively.
  • Do the work of an evangelist. – This word means exactly what we think it means.  Timothy had a calling to be a bearer of Good News to all he met.  That is what an evangelist does.  We are all called to bring the Good News to those we come in contact with and we can do that in many ways.  The first way is to actually preach the Gospel, to vocally proclaim the Good News that Jesus Christ died for our sins and rose again to give us eternal life.  But there are more ways to actually preach the good news, and the most important one is by our conduct and character.  In the Bible it is often called our conversation.
    • Philippians 1:27 says “Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;”
    • Hebrews 13:15 “ Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
    •  James 3:13 “Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.”  
    • And 1 Peter 1:15 “ But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;” 
    • All of these verses point to a lifestyle that is above contempt and that visibly shows to other people  the work that Christ has done in us.  We can have all the flowery words we want, but if we do not have the conversation to go along with it, they are vain words and will lead people astray.  Make sure your lifestyle is where your mouth is!

Make full proof of your ministry – carry out completely what God ahs called you to do!  What a strong challenge Paul gives to Timothy and to all of us.  Do you know what God ahs called you to do?  Does God every stop calling us deeper, or to do more?  Our ministry is always evolving, always changing.  He has great things for every one of us to do, and if we listen closely, He will tell us what the next step is.  We have to be careful not to get off track, but to follow the path he has laid out for us.  This world is dying to hear the Good News.  How is God calling you to share it?  What is your ministry?  Whatever it is, whether washing the walls, preaching the gospel, teaching Sunday School, being a greeter or maybe a prayer warrior, do it with all your might and God just might call you deeper.  Be ready!

Sparrow Song Ministries Interview

Below is a video I taped with a dear friend of mine, Karla Akins. She has an online ministry called Sparrow Song Ministries and she wanted to interview me about my book, The A.S.K. Principle. Many of you may remember the post series I did on this book back in the early part of 2018. We got together after several tries and this is the result. It was posted on her web site just last week. Enjoy!

New Web Site coming online

I would like your help, my friends.  I am developing a new web site that will be a hub for all the various things God has me doing these days, and there are a lot.  This site link to the following online tools that I have been using:

This blog – Bible teachings will continue (Currently the Sermon on the Mount)

“The Psalmist” (God inspired poetry)

“The A.S.K.Principle” web site – https://theaskprinciple.com – my new book web site where the book can be purchased from me

My YouTube channel – Containing many VERY rough clips of choruses and songs I have written plus my cancer testimony video.  I am also hoping to do some teaching on this channel as well.

My Facebook page – also called the Psalmist – this is  basically a mirror site to The Psalmist on WordPress.

This new site is petegardner.net

This site will carry reblogs from my current online presence plus much original content you will not see anywhere else from me.  God is moving me further into this writing world.  This is not intended to be another WordPress site that you will follow.  This is more a pure web site. You will be able to comment and like things posted here. My hope is you will visit, leave comments as you do, and give me feedback as the site is developing.  We have some things in place and a lot more to do.  Please stop by!

Thank you.  You have no idea how much I appreciate all of you!

Pete

Go Tell it on the Mountain

Shout it from the rooftops
Declare the joyous news
Christ is born this day
Christ is come this day

Let the mountains ring
Let the trees proclaim
Lift your voice in praise
Lift your hands in praise

Jesus Christ has come
A baby in the hay
Come to save the world
Come to save us from our sin

Rejoice with ardent praise
Lift up your voice
Tell the world He’s come
Tell the world He saves