“But the greatest of these is love.”

How great is love to God? The title of this post is from the the last verse of 1 Corinthians 13, sometimes called the love chapter.  What does God think of spiritual gifts, or knowledge, or good works without love? Here’s what the Apostle Paul says about that.

1 Corinthians 13:1-3 (NIV)

13 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. 

In other words, without love all these things mean nothing to God. In the next few verses Paul gives a description of love. As your reading those verses, think if that description fits someone you know (hint, it’s not a human).

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (NIV)

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

 

These verses describe God’s (Father, Son and Spirit) personality and character.  If you replace the words love or it with God, the verses are just as true. Love is the greatest because that’s an important part of who God is. If you only think of God as being holy, and don’t think of Him being love as well, then you will never understand Him. Living a life of not sinning, and having no love will never get you into God’s kingdom.

 

Please pray with me. Father God, I come before your throne in Jesus name, with the Spirit. I’m asking you to change my personality and character to be more like yours. I want to have more of Your love in me, and I want to be able to give more of Your love to others. Only You can make that change in me, I can’t do it myself. In Jesus name, amen.

 

Pastor George

copyright Christ’s Disciples Ministry 2019, All Rights Reserved

 

 

 

 

 

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There is no Christ in Halloween

 

Image result for images of god's wrath against sin                Image result for images of god's wrath against sin

 

Do you observe Halloween in some way, perhaps to dress up or give out candy?  Do you encourage your kids and grandkids to “have fun” in death, devil or other costume?  Do you understand that you are honoring ungodly practices like witchcraft, the occult, seances, mediums and the kingdom of darkness in its evil practices? Stop doing that right now and apologize to God for not putting Him first and honoring Him and Him alone.

God wants all believers to repent and not be part of customs of this world that have nothing to do with Him.  Will you hear Him and make needed changes in your lives?

 

Revelation 18:4  (NIV)

Warning to Escape Babylon’s Judgment

Then I heard another voice from heaven say:

“‘Come out of her, my people,’
so that you will not share in her sins,
so that you will not receive any of her plagues;

 

Matthew 22:37  (NIV)

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.

 

 

copyright 2019, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reserved

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Say no to Halloween and its festivities

Image result for image of a witch

 

Spiritual family, do you celebrate Halloween in any way?  What about your kids and grandkids?

Brothers and sisters in Christ, if you do celebrate Halloween in any way, you need to stop.  The devil loves it when you celebrate him and his kingdom.  If you dress up as a witch, something regarding death, something occult or anything that dishonors God and His kingdom, stop right now!  If you encourage your kids or grandkids to don unholy costumes, stop that!  There is nothing fun about Halloween, and there is nothing fun about its festivities that honor satan and the demons.

You cannot blend God’s way with the ways of this world and think you are God’s kids.  It’s your choice. Do you serve God within His parameters or do you serve the kingdom of darkness?

 

copyright 2019, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reserved

Posted in Being Christlike, celebrate Jesus, Christian Coping and Living, Christian Meditation, Christian Obedience, Halloween | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Are your prayers kingdom-focused?

Jesus’ were. We all say we want to be like Jesus, and here’s one important way that can happen.  Have you ever noticed how Jesus taught the disciples to pray?  How they must have seen the difference between the way they prayed and Jesus’ style and words.  Here are the words of the Lord’s prayer for you to see as perhaps you’ve never seen them before:

Matthew 6:9-13  (NIV)

“This, then, is how you should pray:

“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
    as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from the evil one.’

 

Note verse 9 says we need to begin by praising God as holy.    He is precious and awesome to us and needs to be addressed in this manner.  Verse 10 begins by asking that His kingdom come.  Not only that, but we ask for His will to be done not only on planet earth but in heaven.  Remeber Jesus’ prayer to be released for His death sentence?  He put away His own desire to keep moving forward in this physical life and ministry and yielded to God’s will and plan not only for Him but for mankind.

Verse 11 shows that we are to rely upon God for our physical need for food.    Verse 12 asks for forgiveness for ourselves so that we can forgive others.  Only God can forgive our sin, and only He can empower that sort of forgiveness in us.   Verse 13 implores God not to allow us to be tempted by the kingdom of darkness but to deliver us from the snares of the devil.

Matthew 4 shows that Jesus Himself was tempted before His earthly ministry began.  His mind was so filled with God and His ways that there was no point in the temptation other than to show how focused Jesus was on God, His word and the kingdom.    Jesus quoted scripture when the devil attempted to distract Him.  That’s what we need to do, too.  How kingdom-focused are your thoughts?

 

Pray with me, please.  Precious Father God, please be with all who read this post and help us to practice kingdom-focused prayer and live kingdom-focused lives.  Fill us with Holy Spirit love and power as only You can.  Shake the places where we pray so that our prayers can impact all believers. May we come to think like You do and to act like You do.  In Jesus’ name, amen.

 

copyright 2019, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reserved

Posted in Being Christlike, Bible Study, Christian Coping and Living, Christian Meditation, Christian Teaching, Following Jesus, prayer | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

How the Holy Spirit(the helper) helps the believer to be in God’s image.

He, (the Holy Spirit), is in us to change us. He’s there because we can’t change ourselves. He wants us to change from our carnal (fleshly) selfish self. In other words, a way of thinking and feeling.

Galatians 5:19-21 (NIV)

19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

What does the He (and Jesus and the Father) want us to change to? A loving self. In other words, God’s way of thinking and feeling.

Galatians 5:22-23 (NIV)

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

God wants to change us into His image, so we think and feel the way He does. To change our selfish self to a loving self so we can be with Him forever.

 

 

In His love and service;

Pastor George

Copyright 2019, Pastors George and Sharon Billington,  All Rights Reserved.

 

 

 

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God hears and answers prayers

Yesterday, God provided an answer to our prayer for deliverance from an abusive manager.  Pastor G works outside the ministry to provide for our household and ministry needs.  He performs various duties as a clerk in a local supermarket, and he interacts with management on a regular basis.  One manager kept verbally abusing him to the point that we brought the matter to God for Him to resolve as He sees fit.  That was a few days ago.  Pastor G returned to work yesterday afternoon to find out that the woman has been working in a branch in another town.  We don’t know whether she has been transferred permanently or temporarily, but she is not there to make my husband’s day more stressful and difficult.  Since this woman is also a believer, we didn’t want God to hurt her because of her lack of self control towards him and others.  She has challenges she lives with like a special needs kid and a husband who has difficulty doing his part in supporting and providing for his household.

 

So, I felt led to share our experience with you to show you that God does answer prayer, in this case pretty immediately.  His will and timing be done.  Praise Him!

 

Whatever your need is, be it spiritual or physical, bring it before His throne and wait for His answer.  He always answers prayer.  Sometimes, He says “no”.  Other times He says “yes” immediately.  Still other times, He says “wait”.  May God help you experience His hand in your life so you can follow His lead and will.

 

Psalm 37:4  (NIV)

Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.

 

Matthew 26:42  (NIV)

42 He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.”

 

copyright 2019, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reseved

Posted in Abuse, Being Christlike, Bible Study, Christian Choices, Christian Coping and Living, Christian Meditation, Christian Obedience, God the Holy Spirit, prayer | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

How does God feel when you observe Halloween?

Does God like it when you celebrate a day that honors witchcraft, death, demons, witches and the occult?  Does He like it when you dress up and participate in activities that honor that day?  How do think that He feels when you say you do this for the kids and for their enjoyment?  Do you really think He approves of your setting wrong examples of how to live to them and others?

It’s time to examine yourselves, spiritual family. Are you living the way God wants you to live?  Scripture is His written word and instructions how to live and love.  He waits for you to repent of ways you have lived and what you have participated in.  He loves it when you make changes for the spiritual best and waits to extend His forgiveness and support.

Those of us who are His still make mistakes and follow the ways of this world that have nothing to do with honoring Him.  Praise God that we can change that, and praise God that we don’t have to make changes on our own power.  God the Holy Spirit works to transform and change us.  May we all be led by Him and filled with His power.

 

John 14:26  (NIV)

26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

 

 Corinthians 13:5  (NIV)

Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test?

 

James 4:7  (NIV)

Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 

 

copyright 2019, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reserved     

Posted in Being Christlike, Bible Study, celebrate Jesus, Christian Coping and Living, Christian Meditation, Christian Teaching, Following Jesus, Spirit Led | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment