God is Good

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” Luke 2:14 This proclamation was not made at the birth of Christ by a multitude of angels just to engender warm fuzzy feelings for Christmas seasons of the future.  God was saying from the smallest, loneliest most insignificant individual to the largest collective mass of humanity, “Hey everybody, I’m in a good mood and want good for you”.  God desires good for us so much He became flesh to make a way for us to enjoy His limitless goodness.  They shall be My people, and I will be their God; then I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me forever, for the good of them and their children after them. And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from doing them good – Jeremiah 32:38-40. It’s time to settle once and for all the central issue to trusting God; that He is good all the time and desires good for us.  Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning – James 1:16-17.



What is Truth, Pastor David Hertel

Truth not only originates with God, it always leads to God’s conclusions.  Scripture is full of “truths” but if any conclusions drawn from it disagrees with the revelation of the Father by the Son, they need to be reconsidered.  For instance any assumptions we arrive at through studying the mystery of Paul’s thorn should not trump the clear revelation that came through the ministry, miracles and messages of Jesus.  Jesus perfectly revealed God’s attitude and desire concerning all the works of the devil; sickness included.  For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. 1John 3:8 When people are taught that sickness may be the will of God they are at a disadvantage in contending for their healing.  When people are taught that only Jesus’ immediate disciples were commissioned to carry out the eradication of the destructive works of the devil the devil wins.  The impotence and powerlessness of most of the church is not confirmation that these doctrines are true, it is an indictment that they are wrong headed and anything but truth.  


Set Yourself Up by David Hertel

 

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, Ephesians 1:3

In Christ spiritual blessings are freely ours now. We don’t have to wait until we get to heaven; we just have to get in the heavenly places. King David said in Psalm 16:11, “In Your presence is fullness of joy and at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore”. He was convinced that the Lord’s manifest presence was the place where spiritual blessings abound. No wonder then that he derived a way to sensitize himself to God’s presence. He gave us a key to his strategy in verse 8 of the same Psalm when he said, “I have set the LORD always before me; because He is at my right hand I shall not be shaken”. We too can set the Lord before us by predetermining that certain things we encounter in our daily lives will be triggers to make us aware of God. A trigger could be something like finding a penny, or noticing a particular sequence of numbers or experiencing a coincidence. Try it – set yourself up.  See if you’re not amazed at how often God will use these kinds of opportunities to get your attention.


It’s Christmas Time

 
The original intent of celebrating Christmas revolves around the event the Apostle Paul described so succinctly in Galatians 4:4-5. But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. This time of all times, the arrival on earth of God in the flesh is rivaled only by the time of His crucifixion and resurrection 33 ½ years later. Our watches and calendars measure Chronos time which is sequential and quantitative; telling us when things happen but the incarnation was a Kairos moment. Though prophesied 700 years before it was still an unexpected, underestimated qualitative time when heaven invaded earth and human destiny intersected history.  Let’s celebrate Christmas time with that in mind.


Becoming a Gapstander

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I received an e-mail several years ago that ended with this statement; “Life is not the way it’s supposed to be; it’s the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.” At the time I thought Jesus didn’t make the ultimate sacrifice to provide a way for us to just cope as life spirals out of God’s will. Israel often had seasons where life was not the way it was supposed to be either.

Ezekiel 22 tells us that the priests were profaning the law and the Lord, the princes were preying on the people, the prophets were prophesying false visions and lies and the people were oppressing the poor. All of society from the top to the bottom was ripe for judgment but God’s first response was to look for a “gapstander”. So I sought for a man 

The Lord desires to show mercy and He looks for us to stand in the gap between the way things are and the way things should be. Instead of agreeing with the naysayers and faithslayers let’s be gapstanders for America’s future, that it would yet fulfill the purpose in the earth that God intended.

 



Courage Required

 

 

Now they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was going before them; and they were amazed. And as they followed they were afraid.  Mark 10:32

 If you are a Christian and you are bored you may want to check the distance between you and Jesus. His disciples were simultaneously amazed and afraid, but never bored. Amazing things await those who have the courage to follow closely. Learn what you need to, prayerfully make the necessary plan of action then take the next step with the attitude of boldness. Knowledge unapplied is no more effective than ignorance. Your courage to risk it, step out of your comfort zone into the unknown, and trust God alone is the dynamic, moment-by-moment, wonderful adventure you were born again for. Like the Promised Land, the land of promises fulfilled belongs only to the courageous.  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.  Joshua 1:9


Thanksgiving & Praise

 The late Derek Prince once said, “If you only have ten minutes to pray make eight of them praise”. Faith never probates praise and thanksgiving. Faith is “fully persuaded that He who promised is well able to perform” and thanks God in advance.   I’ll bet “thanks Father” garners more attention in heaven than “please God” any day. Let’s determine to maintain an attitude of gratitude and be in that company of believers who “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise”. Pray for peace, prosperity, power and protection for the body of believers called Hope Fellowship Church, our leaders, our community and country.   And however long you pray, praise and give thanks at least as long, “for He is good and His mercy endures forever”.


The Increasing Kingdom

 

Wherever Jesus went He effectively brought kingdom impact & influence with messages & ministry that demonstrated the supernatural; and He commissioned His disciples to do the same. But in Acts 4, they were threatened with horrible things if they continued to teach and minister in Jesus name. Faced with dark, demonic religious resistance they knew the key to kingdom increase would require more than just greater effort on their part so they gathered together & prayed this way; Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus. Rather than backing down they made healing, signs and wonders central to their gospel message and turned the world upside down. The world is waiting for the church to do the same today.