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Where Does Our Soul Go When We Die? Will we go to heaven?

Here is a great article from Michael A. Milton, PhD (University of Wales; MPA, UNC Chapel Hill; MDiv, Knox Seminary), Dr. Milton is a retired seminary chancellor and currently serves as the James Ragsdale Chair of Missions at Erskine Theological Seminary. He is the President of Faith for Living and the D. James Kennedy Institute a long-time Presbyterian minister, and Chaplain (Colonel) USA-R. Dr. Milton is the author of more than thirty books and a musician with five albums released. Mike and his wife, Mae, reside in North Carolina.

I was a young pastor. I was on assignment as a pastoral care intern for a congregation not my own. I was a pastor “on loan,” one might say. My mission? I was dispatched by the church leadership to provide pastoral ministry to a family I didn’t know. I was told that the Henley family was gathered at a nearby nursing home and that they had requested a pastoral presence. The elder who telephoned me gave instructions that I would find Mr. Henley, a long-time member, in room 201. Mrs. Gladys Henley, his wife of sixty-some-odd years would be there to greet me. Mr. Henley’s forty-something-year-old son and his wife would also be there. They had flown in from the West Coast to be with the matriarch and patriarch in this difficult time.

I rehearsed the coming pastoral visit in my mind as I pulled into the covered parking garage. I guided my trusty old Buick sedan into that most appreciated of privileges — clergy parking. I put her in park. I killed the engine. I drew in a breath of hope as I exhaled a prayer for help: “Lord, guide me.”

Before departing for the brief stroll to the nursing home, I opened my Bible. I needed a passage that would serve as my “pastoral prescription” for the spiritual cure to the anticipated spiritual condition of this family. I keep a list of familiar Bible chapters and verses for hospital visits. The passages are arranged, in smeared fountain ink from my own hand, according to spiritual cure of common conditions — aging, bereavement, conflict, and so forth. I came to “vigil.” The family vigil is the gathering of family members (and close friends) in anticipation of a loved one’s passing. My eyes found the words of Luke’s Acts of the Apostles and Saint Peter’s quotation of Psalm 16:10:

“For you will not abandon my soul to Hades or let your Holy One see corruption. You have made known to me the paths of life; you will make me full of gladness with your presence” (Acts 2:27, 28 ESV).

Read the rest here:

Where Does Our Soul Go When We Die? – Topical Studies



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

How much time do I spend jockeying for position with others?

This is how competing looks to God

This is how competing looks to God

Jesus challenges us to stop being competitive. We are always comparing ourselves with others. It is a serious problem. It makes us feel better that we are better off than someone else.

We have all fallen short of what God has in mind for us. We miss the mark.

Worrying about how we compare to others has us ignoring God.

God’s goal for us is that we spend time on the right things.

The first thing is to love God. All else pales with this goal from God.

The second thing is to love everyone. This is a full time job. This will consume our day. This is the only direction we need from Jesus.

These tow things will get us somewhere with God. Jesus knew this.

We can’t ignore God.

“I’m not interested in crowd approval. And do you know why? Because I know you and your crowds. I know that love, especially God’s love, is not on your working agenda. I came with the authority of my Father, and you either dismiss me or avoid me. If another came, acting self-important, you would welcome him with open arms. How do you expect to get anywhere with God when you spend all your time jockeying for position with each other, ranking your rivals and ignoring God? ~Jesus  | John 5:41-42 (The Message Bible)



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

The Vision of the Christian Training Center International

Our staff and interns share their story of how Christian Training Center International has impacted and changed their lives.

The Christian Training Center International was founded in the early 1970’s as The Inn of the Last Resort. It is now known throughout the world for its outreach to families, Christian leaders, and young people. Our focus is to enable individuals – especially young men and women – to face and overcome the mounting issues and pressures in their daily lives.

The most effective way to learn a foreign language is through immersion.  In complete immersion, students spend all of their time hearing and speaking a new language in a sequential and cumulative format.  The goal is to become not only a proficient speaker, but to acquire an appreciation and understanding of a new culture.  This approach describes the training process at CTCI.

Our programs are an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Christ.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Christ.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Christ leads to insight and results in vision.​

Do we find peace through the Father’s provision for the believer?

Image result for peace with God

Peace of God

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” | Galatians 5:22

God’s ultimate provision of peace is discovered in the person and work of Jesus the Messiah. It is only through the Messiah that peace with God can be achieved and maintained.

There are times I am clearly not at peace. I am not at peace with myself and I am not at peace with God or Jesus. Something is wrong. I may or may not know it but it becomes evident in my anxiety and worry. I am not convinced, at that point in time, that God is good and has my best interest at heart.

Of course it could be better. What are you going to do about it?

Question

Here is a good take on asking the right question from Seth Godin. Seth Godin is an Author, Entrepreneur and Most of All, A teacherSeth is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, and speaker. In addition to launching one of the most popular blogs in the world, he has written 18 best-selling books, including The Dip, Linchpin, Purple Cow, Tribes, and What To Do When It’s Your Turn (And It’s Always Your Turn). Though renowned for his writing and speaking, Seth also founded two companies, Squidoo and Yoyodyne (acquired by Yahoo!).

Of course it could be better. That’s not the question, not really.

The question is, “what are you going to do about it?”

And, to follow up, “what effort are you willing to put in to make it better?”

If you’re not willing to make it better, it’s probably going to stay the way it is.

The first day of summer is right around the corner (or winter, if you live in the other hemisphere).

The changing of seasons is as good a time as any to say, “now, I’m going to make it better.”

The key word isn’t ‘better’. The key words are now and I.

Source: Of course it could be better | Seth’s Blog



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

What does God mostly do?

Love

Love

Well here we go. When I keep company with God, hang out with Him, I will learn a life of love.

God is so extravagant in His love as well. He just showers it down on me. Overwhelms me with it. Slathers it on me.

God’s goal for me is love and be extravagant about it. Love can be cautious or exuberant. We should be wildly enthusiastic about how we love.

God doesn’t want us to hold back. God wants us to go all out in our love.

He is good to me all the time. So if I just hang out with him, it rubs off on me.

Mostly what He does is love me. Woo Hoo!! That is good stuff.

Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how the Messiah loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that. | Ephesians 5:1-2 (The Message Bible)



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

How do we hear God?

Bill Eubank is President of the Christian Training Center International. Bill provides us with great insight on how to hear God.

Key points are:

  • God’s voice in our hearts sounds like a flow of spontaneous thoughts. Therefore, when I tune into God, I tune into spontaneity.
  • I must learn to still my own thoughts and emotions, so that I can sense God’s flow of thoughts and emotions within me.
  • As I pray, I fix the eyes of my heart upon Jesus, seeing in the spirit the dreams and visions of Almighty God.
  • Journaling, the writing of our prayers and God’s answers, provides a great new freedom in hearing God’s voice.


If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Do we have contempt for issues of doctrinal differences of opinion? Where do we draw the line?

Image result for theology doctrine policeAm I a member of the “doctrine police” constantly issuing heretic alerts? That is a good question to ask. Why? It might be more about contempt for the opinions of others than heresy. Please read on!

Do I hold fellow followers of Jesus in contempt because of what they believe? What if my contempt is around something that is a weakness of faith and not heresy of doctrine?

It could be that some of our doctrinal disputes are really about theological opinions that aren’t offered by false prophets and heretics. This may seem like a fine line but maybe it isn’t sometimes. There were many old ways of thinking that Jesus and the new covenant leave behind. Like what, you say? How about circumcision? How about what Paul is referencing here in terms of what can and can’t be eaten?

3 Powerful Biblical Weapons to Banish Your Worry and Fear

This article is based on material from Dr. Jeremiah’s book Slaying the Giants in Your Life.

When advice columnist Ann Landers was asked if there was a common denominator among the thousands of letters she received, she replied that their great overriding theme was fear—fear of nearly everything imaginable until the problem grew, for countless readers, into a fear of life itself.

Yet Proverbs 3:25-26 commands, “Do not be afraid of sudden terror, nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes; for the Lord will be your confidence.”  It seems two of the most terrible criminals live within our own hearts—the diabolical duo of worry and fear.

Worry and fear stalk us whenever we board an airplane, open a bill, visit a doctor, walk down a darkened sidewalk, or glance at the clock when our child is late for curfew. Christians aren’t exempt from worry and fear.

Read More Here:

3 Powerful Biblical Weapons to Banish Your Worry and Fear



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Will we wait for Jesus?

Wait for Jesus

God’s Best Work

It is Holy Saturday. Jesus is in the tomb.

What do we do?

We wait.

We have remember the passion of our Master Jesus, the Messiah. We remember His suffering to pay the price for our missing God’s goal. And we wait some more. Joy will come from our waiting.

We don’t like to wait. We aren’t patient.

How Immense Is God’s Love? 

Summer Intern Hope Mortan shares what she learned in John 17.



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Scripture

John 17 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

Jesus Prays for Himself

17 Jesus spoke these things, looked up to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son so that the Son may glorify you,since you gave him authority over all flesh, so that he may give eternal life to everyone you have given him. This is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and the one you have sent —Jesus Christ.I have glorified you on the earth by completing the work you gave me to do. Now, Father, glorify me in your presence with that glory I had with you before the world existed.

Jesus Prays for His Disciples

“I have revealed your name to the people you gave me from the world.They were yours, you gave them to me, and they have kept your word.Now they know that everything you have given me is from you,because I have given them the words you gave me. They have received them and have known for certain that I came from you. They have believed that you sent me.

“I pray for them. I am not praying for the world but for those you have given me, because they are yours. 10 Everything I have is yours, and everything you have is mine, and I am glorified in them. 11 I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you.Holy Father, protect them by your name that you have given me, so that they may be one as we are one. 12 While I was with them, I was protecting them by your name that you have given me. I guarded them and not one of them is lost, except the son of destruction, so that the Scripture may be fulfilled. 13 Now I am coming to you, and I speak these things in the world so that they may have my joy completed in them. 14 I have given them your word. The world hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 15 I am not praying that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.16 They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctifythem by the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. 19 I sanctify myself for them, so that they also may be sanctified by the truth.

Jesus Prays for All Believers

20 “I pray not only for these, but also for those who believe in me through their word. 21 May they all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us, so that the world may believe you sent me. 22 I have given them the glory you have given me, so that they may be one as we are one. 23 I am in them and you are in me, so that they may be made completely one, that the world may know you have sent me and have loved them as you have loved me.

24 “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, so that they will see my glory, which you have given me because you loved me before the world’s foundation. 25 Righteous Father, the world has not known you. However, I have known you, and they have known that you sent me. 26 I made your name known to them and will continue to make it known, so that the love you have loved me with may be in them and I may be in them.”

Christian Standard Bible (CSB) The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

Miracles of Jesus raising the dead!

Image result for resurrection lazarus quotesThere are a number of examples of this stunning miracle in the Bible. Notably, 3 are attributed to Jesus. This is the pinnacle of the miracles Jesus would perform under the power of the Holy Spirit as the Son of God. They culminated in the resurrection of Lazarus who had been dead for 4 days.

In John 12 we learn the effect this had on those who knew Lazarus. The large crowd of the Jews then learned that Jesus was there; and they came, not for Jesus’ sake only, but that they might also see Lazarus, whom He raised from the dead. But the chief priests planned to put Lazarus to death also; because on account of him many of the Jews were going away and were believing in Jesus.”

The Entire Anti-Family Narrative Just Crumbled 

Sexuality and Gender: Findings from the Biological, Psychological, and Social Sciences

This study, conducted by world renowned Johns Hopkins University scientists Dr. Lawrence S. Mayer and Dr. Paul R. McHugh, is a meta-analysis of data from over 200 peer-reviewed studies regarding “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” It was published in the fall 2016 edition of The New Atlantis journal and is, far and away, the most objective, exhaustive and comprehensive study on the topic to date.

The research established, among other things:

    • “The understanding of sexual orientation as an innate, biologically fixed property of human beings — the idea that people are ‘born that way’ — is not supported by scientific evidence.”
    • “Sexual orientation” in adolescents is “fluid over the life course for some people, with one study estimating that as many as 80 percent of male adolescents who report same-sex attractions no longer do so as adults.”
    • “Compared to heterosexuals, non-heterosexuals are about two to three times as likely to have experienced childhood sexual abuse.”
    • “Gay”-identified people are “at an elevated risk for a variety of adverse health and mental health outcomes.”
    • “Gay”-identified people experience “nearly 2.5 times the risk of suicide.”
    • “The hypothesis that gender identity is an innate, fixed property of human beings that is independent of biological sex — that a person might be ‘a man trapped in a woman’s body’ or ‘a woman trapped in a man’s body’ — is not supported by scientific evidence.”
    • “Studies comparing the brain structures of transgender and non-transgender individuals … do not provide any evidence for a neurobiological basis for cross-gender identification.”
    • “[S]ex-reassigned individuals [are] about five times more likely to attempt suicide and about 19 times more likely to die by suicide.”
    • “[T]he rate of lifetime suicide attempts across all ages of transgender individuals is estimated at 41 percent, compared to under 5 percent in the overall U.S. population.”
    • “Only a minority of children who experience cross-gender identification will continue to do so into adolescence or adulthood.”

Lest you buy the left wing talking point that so-called “homophobia” leads to high rates of suicide and other devastating consequences of the “LGBT” lifestyle, a recent study from “gay”-affirming Sweden dispels this myth. The research, published in the May issue of the European Journal of Epidemiology, found that people entering into a “gay marriage” were, as mirrored above, nearly three times as likely to commit suicide than their heterosexual counterparts.

“Even in a country with a comparatively tolerant climate regarding homosexuality such as Sweden,” observed the researchers, “same-sex married individuals evidence a higher risk for suicide than other married individuals.”

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Meanwhile, the CDC, no bastion of conservatism, just released this month a report establishing and detailing the devastating effects of “LGBT” identity and behaviors on teens “grades 9-12.”

Writing at WND, child advocate Linda Harvey expressed frustration that, despite its solid conclusions, the CDC yet insists upon using such propagandist terms as “sexual minorities” to describe same-sex-attracted teens. She notes that “these adolescents no more qualify as ‘minorities’ than kids who eat junk food,” and cuts through the smokescreen to summarize the report’s findings:

“Self-labeled homosexual and bisexual teens were twice as likely as heterosexual teens to have been victims of sexual or physical dating violence, to be regular cigarette smokers, to have tried marijuana before age 13, to ever have used cocaine, hallucinogenic drugs, ecstasy, taken prescription drugs without a doctor’s prescription, or to have felt sad or hopeless.

“They were more likely to be current marijuana users than heterosexual students, more likely to drink alcohol, and over four times as likely to have used methamphetamines or heroin.

“They were four times as likely to actually attempt suicide.

“Homosexual and bisexual students were about 25 percent more likely to have had sexual intercourse, and more likely to be currently sexually active and to have had four or more partners.

“They are more than twice as likely to have had sexual intercourse before age 13.” Can we just have a heart and ask: with whom? Were these adult ‘partners’ (aka molesters)?

It’s notable here that, in past studies, researchers with the CDC have indeed discovered that “gay” men are “at least three times more likely to report CSA (childhood sexual abuse),” while the left-leaning Archives of Sexual Behavior similarly determined in a 2001 study that nearly half of all “gay”-identified men were, as children, molested by a homosexual predator: “46 percent of homosexual men and 22 percent of homosexual women reported having been molested by a person of the same gender. This contrasts to only 7 percent of heterosexual men and 1 percent of heterosexual women reporting having been molested by a person of the same gender.”

Considering the above non-biased, replicated scientific facts, it’s little wonder that an earlier study in the International Journal of Epidemiology (IJE) determined the “life expectancy at age 20 years for gay and bisexual men is 8 to 20 years less than for all men.”

You think me callous. You think I hate. I’m not and I do not. Truth is hate to those who hate truth. I love self-identified “LGBT” individuals with a love beyond my own power to summon. I love them because Christ first loved me. I love them because, like them, I am a sinner in need of a Savior. They are under deception. The enemy of man is the father of lies, and he prowls like a lion seeking to both deceive and devour us all.

I know what it’s like to have someone close to me struggle with same-sex attraction and adopt an aberrant sexual identity. I have a dear family member wasting away with AIDS at this very moment. While I love him, I also understand that if I were to affirm his lifestyle and offer well-intentioned yet dangerously misguided “compassion,” I would be hurting him, not helping him.

I offer true compassion. I offer truth, in love.

If you truly love someone, you should never, ever encourage that person in a demonstrably destructive and subjective “gay,” “lesbian,” “bisexual” or “transgender” identity. Love them unconditionally, but encourage them to find freedom from it.

Because, whether spiritual, physical, or both, it may be the difference between life and death.

Source: The Entire ‘LGBT’ Narrative Just Crumbled | The Stream



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

All I need to do is love others as if my life depends on it.

Love One Another

Love One Another

Oh yes. There are times I felt my life depended on many things. Things don’t love. Things are immaterial to eternal life found in Jesus. Jesus has a goal for us.

This good word from the Apostle Peter sets a wonderful standard for me. All I need to do is love others as if my life depends on it.

AND, my life does depend on it. I can’t have the life God intends for me without love.

Life in God = Love

God has a goal in mind for me. I should be cheerful. I should be generous. If I am, He will get all the credit.

May I love in such a way that it makes up for practically anything. Wouldn’t that be an amazing thing. That is the way of Jesus. That is God’s goal for all of us.

Jesus does it. Here is the deal.

Love more, worry less.

Most of all, love each other as if your life depended on it. Love makes up for practically anything. Be quick to give a meal to the hungry, a bed to the homeless—cheerfully. Be generous with the different things God gave you, passing them around so all get in on it: if words, let it be God’s words; if help, let it be God’s hearty help. That way, God’s bright presence will be evident in everything through Jesus, and he’ll get all the credit as the One mighty in everything—encores to the end of time. Oh, yes!”

1 Peter 4:8-11



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Who Is Our Helper? 

Jedidiah Wright, summer intern, shares about what it means to listen to the holy spirit in your life.

If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus.  The goal is fluency in the language of relationships.  Programs share a sequential vision, building an understanding of relationships and family culture.  The foundation is an encounter with Jesus.  This encounter is the means for both insight and vision.  Encountering Jesus leads a radical change in living and relationships.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Scripture

John 16 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

“I have told you these things to keep you from stumbling. They will ban you from the synagogues. In fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering service to God. They will do these things because they haven’t known the Father or me. But I have told you these things so that when their time comes you will remember I told them to you. I didn’t tell you these things from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going away to him who sent me, and not one of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Yet, because I have spoken these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I am telling you the truth. It is for your benefit that I go away, because if I don’t go away the Counselor will not come to you. If I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world about sin, righteousness, and judgment: About sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; 11 and about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.

How does God demonstrate His goodness in His actions?

Image result for god acts goodGod not only is good but more importantly, God does good. God acts on His goodness and demonstrates it to me every day. I may not see it because that is because I am not looking. Jesus has a goal for me. The goal is to see how good God is to me.

Jesus came to bring good news through what He does. That was His mission from His Father. I’ve seen Jesus. He was smiling a lot. I have not always seen Him that way. I think I’ve always confused His directness, particularly with the religious leaders of His day, with grimness and anger.

Jesus demonstrated how good God is by tirelessly healing the sick. Consider this. Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people. News about him spread all over Syria, and people brought to him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures,and the paralyzed; and he healed them.” (Matthew 4:22-24) Jesus showed God’s goodness every time He could.

Why the Generations Approach Generosity Differently 

Below is some great insight from Barna on Why the Generations Approach Generosity Differently.  Barna is a private, non-partisan, for-profit organization under the umbrella of the Issachar Companies. Located in Ventura, California, Barna Group has been conducting and analyzing primary research to understand cultural trends related to values, beliefs, attitudes and behaviors since 1984.

What was the most important thing to Jesus?

Luke 23 46Everything was complete. The last thing Jesus says is so profound. This is the way it has always been with Jesus. Jesus is all about doing what God wants Him to do. That is it. Finished.

Jesus only did what he saw his Father doing. He only said what he heard his Father saying. He placed his life in God’s hand. Always.

Jesus never missed God’s goal for one single minute. Always on track. Always seeking God. Always placing his life in God’s hands.

From the beginning to the end. It is the last thing he said. The he died.

Having finished it all, Jesus puts His life in the hands of God who sent Him.

“Father, I place my life in your hands!” ~Jesus | Luke 23:46



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

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Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Synchronized Swimming – Our Talent Show Winners 

Our fun family talent show. This is a short clip of the winners.

Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack.

Throughout the year, we welcome individuals, couples, and families from around the world who are seeking to strengthen their relationships – with God, within their own families, and with their fellow believers.

Every session, individuals, couples, and families from around the world are transformed, healed, and renewed. Barriers to forgiveness, personal growth, and hope are overcome in a supportive and intimate environment. Join us in this safe and holy place where painful and complex situations can be worked through – a place of hope and healing.

Learn more and register

​Teaching topics include:

  • The Plan of God for Family
  • Duty vs Intimacy
  • Fatherhood
  • Communication
  • Covering
  • Resolving Conflict
  • Defeating Parenting Fears
  • Discipline
  • …and more!

If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

 

 

Where does hypocrisy come from?

Image result for hypocrite

Jesus is clear. Jesus hates hypocrites. Jesus calls it out all the time. My contempt allows me to ignore its reality in my life. I must change my mind (aka repent). This is imperative!

Hypocrisy is an outward pretense masking an inner reality. Jesus condemns hypocrisy, especially in matters of faith. Followers of Jesus are to express our commitment to God in our words and our deeds, as well as in our inner motivation. There should always be alignment of the heart, the mind and my actions.

33 States Have Passed 479 Pro-Life Laws in the Last 10 Years Protecting Babies From premature death

We stand for life. All lives are so precious. Here is some good news on progress to protect the lives of the most vulnerable.

A new report from the Guttmacher Institute shows how pro-life advocates can make a difference when they elect pro-life leaders to office.

Since 2011, state lawmakers have passed a record 479 restrictions in 33 states, according to Guttmacher, the former research arm of Planned Parenthood. To put that number into perspective, states have passed 1,271 pro-life laws since 1973 when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Roe v. Wade, the report states. This means more than one third of all pro-life laws in the U.S. have been approved in the past decade.

Of those 479 laws, 40 percent directly protect life in some way, whether at a gestational age or as a means of protecting unborn babies from discrimination based on a disability or their sex, the report found.

That number includes 17 pro-life laws that states passed this year. Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Ohio all passed laws banning deaths after an unborn baby’s heartbeat is detectable, about six to eight weeks; and Alabama passed a law banning deaths almost completely. Arkansas and Utah also passed laws banning deaths after 18 weeks, a point by which most European countries also ban premature deaths.

Read More Here:

33 States Have Passed 479 Pro-Life Laws in the Last 10 Years Protecting Babies From death   LifeNews.com

Why we believe in life?

We believe that LIFE is sacred, both in the womb and outside the womb. There are numerous teachings in Scripture that make it abundantly clear what God’s view of life is. Jeremiah 1:5 tells us that God knows us before He forms us in the womb.

The word of the Lord came to me: I chose you before I formed you in the womb; I set you apart before you were born. I appointed you a prophet to the nations.

Psalm 139:13-16 speaks of God’s active role in our creation and formation in the womb.

For it was you who created my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will praise you because I have been remarkably and wondrously made. Your works are wondrous, and I know this very well. My bones were not hidden from you when I was made in secret, when I was formed in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all my days were written in your book and planned before a single one of them began.

Exodus 21:22-25 prescribes the same penalty — death — for someone who causes the death of a baby in the womb as for someone who commits murder. This clearly indicates that God considers a baby in the womb to be as human as a full-grown adult.

For the disciple of Jesus, life is not a matter of a woman’s right to choose. It is a matter of the life or death of a human being made in God’s image (Genesis 1:26-27; 9:6).

  • God said “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.” (Jeremiah 1:5)
  • David said “For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth.”(Psalm 139:13-16)
  • Luke said “When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.” (Luke 1:41)
  • God said “You shall not murder.” (Deuteronomy 5:17)
  • King Solomon said “There are six things which the LORD hates, Yes, seven which are an abomination to Him: Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, And hands that shed innocent blood.”  (Proverbs 6:16)
  • Biblical authors unanimously refer to the preborn as people.
    • Job describes miscarried babies as “infants who never saw the light” (Job 3:16).
    • Pregnant mothers are referred to throughout the New Testament as being “with child(Matthew 1:18, Luke 2:5).
    • Of Rebekah and Abraham’s twin sons, Moses records “the children struggled together within her” (Genesis 25:22).
    • Luke refers to Elizabeth’s baby with the exact same word, υἱὸν (Greek for “son”), both before and after his birth (Luke 1:36, 57).
    • They’re not ambiguous “blobs of cells” or “scrambled eggs” but sons, daughters, children, infants.


If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Does False Doctrine contradict the good news of Jesus the Messiah?

Image result for false prophets

False prophets

Jesus, the Son of God, is the Messiah. God sent him to live among us, die for our missing God’s goal (aka sin), be resurrected from the dead into an incorruptible body and ascend to heaven to be seated at the right hand of God as King. Now that is a very big deal!

We have 4 books that tell the good news (aka gospel) of Jesus. We have his words. We know the truth about why He came and where He now resides. This is not about acceptable theology or opinions of those who are weak in faith. This is about those who are deceived themselves and would deceive us as well about Jesus.

How innovative ministries are bringing millennials back to church  

Here is a great article about faith among young adults. For many teens and young adults,  they only have a limited amount of experience in their walk with Jesus. The article points out that young adults are in need of mentorship from those in their congregation who have decades of experience as devout Christians.

The Christian Training Center’s young adult program is focused on personal and spiritual development for young adults. While immersed in a way of life that emphasizes the Word of God, prayer, relationships, family, servanthood and personal discipline, you will be renewed, trained, and challenged to walk with God in a deeper way. Learn More and Register.

Despite belonging to a church-attending family, 24-year-old Danielle De Guzman is among the many American millennials who struggled throughout adolescence to find relevance and trust in the church or Christianity.

After high school, she would at times still attend her parents’ large church in Collin County, Texas, but admits that she would just sit in the lobby and wait for the service to end because she just didn’t see the point of going into the service.

Although she spent years going to the church, she struggled to get plugged in or even develop personal relationships with others in her congregation.

Eventually, she began telling her parents that she had to work on Sundays so she could get out of going to church. Her parents respected her freedom and De Guzman stopped going to church for a period of time. Going to college locally, she spent a lot of time — like many other college students — partying.

The experience had by De Guzman is not unique among millennial adults who grew up in the church.

Read More Here:

How innovative ministries are bringing millennials back to church   – The Christian Post



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Am I a student of good?

Seek good and find delight

Seek good and find delight

There are many things we can be students of. Seeking good is God’s goal for us.

God wants us to go after wisdom and good like there is no tomorrow. This is the main thing about the main thing.

How do we spend our time? What kind of TV do we watch? What are we searching for on the internet?

Are we seeking good and God?

Of course, there is a consequence to being a student of evil. It is sad but God warns us that if we seek evil we will become evil.  We will find what we seek.

It is our choice.  Jesus alerts us that there is a way that leads to life. That way is Jesus.

May we seek good. May we find delight. So be it.

“The one who seeks good finds delight; the student of evil becomes evil.” ~King Solomon (Proverbs 11:27)



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Our morning Pledge of Allegiance to the United States Flag 

Our mornings at the Christian Training Center start out right. We have our devotion time (together). Before breakfast, we gather to say the Lord’s prayer, the pledge of allegiance to the flag, and pray for our country..

If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

 

What are some examples of meekness in the life of Jesus?

Image result for meekness is not weaknessJesus is clear that I will be more than happy if I am meek and gentle. I will in fact inherit the earth according to the “Jesus Manifesto”.

According to our dictionary, to be meek means you are “showing patience and humility, gentleness … easily imposed upon, submissive”. The meek one doesn’t throw fits or fly off the handle under pressure. A good synonym is “gentle”. A meek person is under control.

Jesus challenges me to learn from Him. Jesus is gentle. Jesus is humble. Jesus shows me how to have compassion and love.

Matthew 11:29  — “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”

4 Things the Bible Says About Freedom

Here is a great article from the Billy Graham Evangelical Association on liberty and freedom found in our relationship with Jesus.

God created human beings to be free. The Declaration of Independence states that people “are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

But what is “liberty,” exactly? Is freedom based upon the country where you live, or can it have a deeper meaning?

Here are some key ideas from the Bible about freedom—including how to find true freedom in your life.

Read More Here:

4 Things the Bible Says About Freedom



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Is the resurrection of Jesus evidence of God?

Good news of God

Good news of God

Jesus rose from the dead. That is amazing and represents the good news of God.

God is not dead. We stand against the notion because we know the power of God. We have great evidence that Jesus rose from the dead into an incorruptible body.

We are a people of good news. People are confused. They are looking to find the way. Jesus is the WAY, the TRUTH and the LIFE! That is amazing.

Jesus calls on us to be a witness to the goodness of God. I can do that!

“The urgency to preach the Good News is as true today as it was two thousand years ago, even if some scholars have naively declared God to be dead, forgetting that they are dealing with a God who found His way out of the grave…”

~ Roman Catholic Cardinal Ivan Dias implores Anglican Bishops at the Lambeth Conference to stand against “moral confusion.”



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

Check out our upcoming ministry programs for young adults and families. Please click here.

Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Christians are being silenced: Pastor arrested after preaching love in a Toronto neighborhood 

Pastor David Lynn of Christ Forgiveness Ministries was arrested on June 4, 2019 for preaching the Gospel publicly in Toronto, Canada.

The neighborhood he was preaching in was Church-Wellesley Village. This neighborhood is known to be a place where many of the LGBTQ community in Toronto reside. His ministry is currently on an outdoor preaching tour throughout the 22 districts of Toronto. June 4, happened to be the day they scheduled for that district.

It is not uncommon for someone to think “open-air preaching” and “LGBTQ neighborhood” and immediately jump to thoughts of preachers condemning homosexuals to hell. However, Pastor Lynn’s preaching was some of the most loving and gracious preaching I have ever seen and heard. Which is why it is outrageous that he was arrested.

The entire time of preaching was live streamed via Facebook and can be found on YouTube. Throughout the video, it is surprising to see the reaction of those who were listening to Lynn’s preaching. The more love he poured out, the more hate and resistance he received. As anyone can see if they view the video, Pastor Lynn was respectful and kind throughout all of his time preaching. As he shared the Gospel, he also made statements like “We are here to tell you that we hate nobody.” He emphasized God’s love again and again.

He proceeded to ask those protesting him if they would be willing to tolerate him as a Christian. But those listening were unwilling to dialogue, and many asked him to leave the street corner.

Throughout the encounter he was very calm and collected, not entering into any disrespectful or condemnatory dialogue.

Read More Here:

Christians are being silenced: Pastor arrested after preaching love in LGBT neighborhood – The Christian Post



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

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Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Is my heart in it?

Heart, dedicated, caring and committed

Heart, dedicated, caring and committed

Jesus challenges us to have our heart in the right place with God and everyone else. It is all about our relationships.

Just saying the right thing will not make a difference. Jesus demands that our heart be in it. Jesus knows that if our heart is in it, the results will come.

It isn’t the “big show” we make of saying things. Do we do the right God-things? Is our heart in it even if no one knows about what we do?

Another challenge is just going through the motions. We pray but is rote and meaningless. We’re just saying the words. We read the scripture but it doesn’t speak to us. We go to church and stand at the right times but are emotionally detached from our brothers and sisters in Jesus.

Emotion flows from the heart. Joy is a big deal. Jesus brings joy into our lives. Joy is a fruit of the Holy Spirit.

God’s goal for us is for us to guard our heart. Everything starts with our heart. God wants men and women of God who have a heart for Jesus.

May my heart be in it every day!!

“These people make a big show of saying the right thing, but their heart isn’t in it.” ~Jesus | Mark 7:6



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

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Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

 

Why should we be praying for Israel? 

Larry Pons is the Chief Executive for the Christian Training Center International.

Why should we be praying for Israel?



If you would like to donate to the Christian Training Center, please click here.

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Heroes Semester is a 10-week residential, “family style” living experience like no other! | — Sept 2 – Nov 9, 2019 | Participants ages 18-26 come with one purpose – to go deeper with the Lord. ow.ly/Nhag30oRYRK

Strengthening & Restoring Family Relationships — Train to Reign Program — Oct 20 – Nov 2 | Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack. Come strengthen your family in a strong relationship with God. http://ow.ly/l5SU30oS5pQ

Is faithfulness encouragement to be trustworthy?

Faithfulness

I am called to be faithful and trustworthy. I am challenged by this some days. When I think about it and focus on it, I execute God’s goal. Some days, like a sheep, I wander off.

I am thankful for the good Shepherd who finds me and brings me back home.

The good news is that God is always faithful. That is just the way He is. He has always been patient, waiting for me to come back to Jesus and follow Him.

God is good! God is in a good mood. God will see me through to the end.

Faithfulness is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. [Galatians 5:22 – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.]

What Does the Bible Say about Abortion? 

Here is a great article from Tamela Turbeville. She has a desire for every woman with a difficult past to know God loves them. She is wife to Richard, and mother to three grown sons and two beautiful daughters-in-law. When doing what she loves most – studying God’s Word, reading and writing – she is surrounded by her six rescue dogs in her small office in south Arkansas.

There is no question the subject of abortion is a controversial topic. Nearly every day, news reports cover the fast-changing laws and the heated clashes between pro-life and pro-choice proponents. Both sides of the issue stand firm on their beliefs and rights.

Often if you are not on the side of the loudest advocates, you may feel as if you are under attack by both the world and the enemy. The world calls the choice of abortion a right, but what is the position of Christ-followers on the subject?

As followers of Jesus, our stance should align with God’s. Now, more than ever, our voice should speak truth against the enemy, and the best defense against the world and the enemy is knowing the truth found in the Word of God.

The Bible is clear that God is the Creator of life and all life is precious, born and unborn. So, what does the Bible say about abortion?

Read more here:

What Does the Bible Say about Abortion? – Topical Studies

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Why don’t our faithless solutions allow God to shine through?

Jesus feeds 5,000

Jesus feeds 5,000

Jesus challenges us. It had been a long day. It was beginning to get late.

His disciples came to him and said to Jesus, “Dismiss the crowd so they can go to the farms or villages around here and get a room for the night and a bite to eat. We’re out in the middle of nowhere.”

You feed them, he challenged them.

They came to him with a problem and a simple solution. They knew they couldn’t feed them because there were close to 5,000 men and there was no food. No one was prepared to be there so long with Jesus.

They also should have known that God can provide food when there is none. They had been around Jesus long enough to know this. Our faithless solutions don’t allow God to shine through.

And so … Jesus challenges us to seek God first, don’t depend on our own solutions even when we have one and let Him shine through.

God has a goal for us. It is to trust Him and not ourselves.

“You feed them,” Jesus said. (Luke 9:13)



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The Ancient Enemies of Israel Have Entered Our Land

Image result for enemies of israelites

Thank you for joining us as we seek to better understand some of the things going on in our lives and nation today. This is an in-depth study written by Susan Pons. As you read, please ask the Holy Spirit to give you ears to truly hear and understand this important message.

“Behold, I will send you Eli′jah the prophet before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes. And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse.” (Malachi 4:5-6 RSV)

This is the perfect Scripture to begin with in order for each of us to perhaps face the happening that a curse has been released across our land and the reasons for its release.As a culture, the hearts of the fathers are not being turned toward their children.This makes it almost impossible for the hearts of the children to be turned to their fathers. Malachi declares the consequence of the sinful divide between fathers and children… ‘lest I come and smite the land with a curse’. Amazing as it is, this is the final warning of the Old Testament.

When a curse comes upon a nation, it covers the nation except for those people who recognize its debilitating force.

What happens when enemies enter our land?

Exodus 34:10 (The Message) says“And God said, As of right now, I’m making a covenant with you: In full sight of your people I will work wonders that have never been created in all the Earth, in any nation. Then all the people with whom you’re living will see how tremendous God’s work is, the work I’ll do for you. Take careful note of all I command you today. I’m clearing your way by driving out Amorites, Canaanites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. Stay vigilant. Don’t let down your guard lest you make covenant with the people who live in the land that you are entering and they trip you up”.

Who were these enemies that had entered the land of Israel? Let’s define them and compare them to our America in today’s world.

  1. Hittites – literally translated means, sons of terror”; and as we know the word terror refers to an extreme manifestation of fear. The Hittite spirit will bring intimidation and fear and discouragement. In Numbers 21:1-4, King Arad heard that Israel was coming. He fought against Israel and took captives. Israel made a vow to God and asked for His help. God accepted the vow, and Israel with God’s help, won the battle… but the Hittite spirit did its damage.

“And the soul of the people was much discouraged because of the way” (Num 21:4 KJV).

The Hittite spirit had done its job causing Israel to become fearful.

In America today, it may do us well to recognize the Hittite spirit operating in our nation to bring fear to those who disagree with their agenda that goes against the peace and safety of our nation and citizens. School, church, and synagogue shootings; violent shows over our television and movie screens; violent video games; in Chicago 75% of Black homes are fatherless…thus the Hittite spirit is free to operate.

2.  Ammorite – the word for Ammonite in Hebrew comes from another Hebrew word, amor,which means to utter, to say (gossip, slander, and evil speaking). This implies that people with Ammonite spirits are people who want their name uttered or mentioned. Ammonites are haughty fame-seekers; seekers of human glory and greatness. Practically all dictators in history are Ammorites. These are people like Saddam Hussein, Fidel Castro, Adolph Hitler, and Joseph Stalin, who like to dominate and control others. Ammorites are again mentioned as people who followed false gods. Cherish was the name of a god they worshipped whose whose name means “destroyer”. The aim of the Ammonite spirit is to stir up discord and division in our mind as it beats us down in spirit.It is aimed at the Christian faith that preaches liberty to the human soul.

Perhaps we can place much of the media into the tribe of the Ammorites.

3. Canaanite – the name Canaanite means trafficker. This is the exact same description given to Satan in Ezekiel 28:13-18. This spirit is behind addictions and sexual impurity. This is why in the Scriptures, Sodom and Gomorrah were said to be Canaanite cities (Genesis 10:19). Jezebel was the daughter of Ethbaal king of Sidon, which means she was Phoenician, who were Canaanites. The Canaanite spirit uses wealth and material gain to bring God’s people into compromise and backsliding.

Sexual trafficking, labor trafficking, and drug trafficking, are all start examples of the Canaanite spirit that has invaded our land.

4. Philistine – The name Philistine means strangers, emigrants, foreigners, forces foreign to the Spirit of God.

A person who is guided by a Philistine agenda is usually disdainful of intellectual or artistic values. Philistine also means a people who are contentedly commonplace in ideas and tastes. They are called Allophyli, (foreigners in the Septuagint). They are spoken of as uncircumcised in the Books of Samuel. Philistines are a people who are lacking in, or hostile, or smugly indifferent to cultural values such as art work, theatre, manners, respect, homes in God’s order, etc. Christian and Godly cultural values are taught and learned in the home. Uncleanness can enter our homes in what we view, read, and the way we speak to each other.

The giant Philistine spirit operating in our nation today is tolerance of the Muslim faith but persecution of the Christian faith.

5. Hivite – Hivite means dwellers in the land.The first time they play an active roll in the Bible is when Shechem the Hivite raped Dinah. The Hivite spirit’s goal is to lure us using illusions, delusions, and sensual pleasures that place the mind and imaginations into a snare.

The word Hivite can mean tent dweller, living a lifestyle that is lived out in the confines of the systems of the world and in conflict with the Kingdom of God. The Hives speak of our conflict with the world and its lifestyles. The prodigal son operated under the Hivite spirit.

Movies, television, the internet, pornography, and sexual abuse (especially with children) are ensconced with the Hivite spirit.

6. Jebusites – Jebusite means thresher. From this we can infer that Jebusite spirits, being threshers, are spirits that tread or stomp on others. People whose hearts are infected by Jebusite spirits tend to be people who do not hesitate to put down and humiliate others. By stomping on people, Jebusites make a concerted effort to prevent them from growing taller. They like to make people feel small, and deliberately put them down anytime they see them trying to establish spiritual authority.

Here again, arrogant politicians, media, Hollywood, and government systems are rampant with the Jebusite spirit.

In our homes we need to make certain that we are not bullies and our children are not growing up to become bullies. We need to learn how to confront this arrogant spirit.

7. Perizzite – Perizzite means unwalled town, city, or village. Ezekiel 38:10-11 says, “This is what the Sovereign LORD says: On that day thoughts will come into your mind and you will devise an evil scheme. You [the evil army] will say, ‘I will invade a land of unwalled villages; I will attack a peaceful and unsuspecting people – all of them living without walls and without gates and bars’.”

A nation without borders loses its identity. A home without boundaries is a home without an identity. Illegal immigrants and foreign enemies easily enter into our unwalled cities and towns. Many cause violence, harm, and aid in the cultural collapse of America. This is the Perizzite spirit invading our unwalled nation, cities, and our citizens.

This Perizzite spirit can operate in our homes that have become unwalled…homes without fathers…homes that do not give their marriages or children a holy identity to carry with them throughout life.

“Joshua marched up from Gilgal with his entire army, including the best fighting men. The Lord said to Joshua, “Do not be afraid of them; I have given them into your hand. Not one of them will be able to withstand you”. The Lord threw them into confusion before Israel, so Joshua and the Israelites defeated them completely at Gibeon” (Joshua 10:7-8).

Perhaps each of us should embrace the challenge that we are included in the fight for our nation. Some examples of ways we can make a difference are calling our representatives, writing letters, posting facts and articles, teaching our children truths about the history of our country, sending funds to those organizations that stand for true American values, or writing editorials to our local newspapers, etc…

“Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you!”(Ephesians 5:14).

There are so many ways that we can truly get involved in the way our nation is run. Even a small effort (which may seem insignificant) will be blessed by our Father who is always looking for righteous people that honor Him. These people are a blessing to Him.

Here at CTCI, we pray for our nation and government daily, weekly and sometimes more often. It’s that important! We believe Godly character is taught and begins in the family. We offer “Train to Reign” programs throughout the year to guide and teach (and many times restore) families, experientially, to know how to honor God and fulfill their God-given role in the family – with love. Everything we teach is based on God’s Truth found in His Holy Word.

If you would like information about our Train to Reign program, or other programs and events we offer throughout the year, please click  here, or fill out the form below and we will get back to you promptly. We thank you for your interest in this ministry for our Lord Jesus.

 

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Does God command that we have hope?

Image result for hope in godDante passes through the gate of Hell, which bears an inscription ending with the famous phrase “Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch’intrate“, most frequently translated as “Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.”

Somewhere between where I am today and Dante’s description, I need to find more hope. God is good and in a good mood. Justice, while lacking here some days, will be done. Beyond faith, I need hope.

It is right for me to hope. Hope is the total grounding of my confidence and expectation in God’s goodness and providential care even in the face of trouble.

The mere sound of the name of Jesus causes me to remember to hope. I need to focus, with confidence, that what Jesus has promised will happen. Jesus is faithful. Justice will triumph!

Before you know it, his justice will triumph;  the mere sound of his name will signal hope, even  among far-off unbelievers. | Matthew 12:21

What is a Disciples Life Like From a Christian Perspective? 

Here is a great perspective on a disciples life in Jesus. Lisa Brown is an aspiring writer and owner of The Family Roadmap Blog and a Parent Coach at the National Center Of Biblical Parenting. She has a 10-year-old son, a 9-year-old daughter, and has been married to her husband for 13 years. Prior to marriage, she worked over 20 years enriching the lives of hundreds of children and families. Lisa has a Bachelors in Social Work and Early Childhood Education.

Is life the air that we breathe? Or is life pure energy? From a Christian perspective one would say that life is action, faith, belief, and relationships. Life is full of emotion, miracles and facts. Life is growth, change, and experience. Life is intelligent, sorrowful, and full of regrets. Life is a story filled with forgiveness, hate, love, disappointment, discouragement, and questions.

The word of God reminds us what life is! In sad moments of despair, confusion, and fear, God’s word comes alive and Jesus is the one who turns our mourning into dancing.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)

Jesus is the air that we breathe and it’s Jesus who gives us our daily dose of energy.

We live in a culture that sells us happiness and advertises good life to those who can afford it.  Money and things are for those who deserve it. Culture defines life as a time and place to get the best of everything.

A Christian’s perspective about life is very different from our culture.  We see life as an opportunity to love others and to serve God faithfully. Jesus is our life. Following are seven ways to view life from a Christian perspective.

Read More Here:

What is Life From a Christian Perspective? – Topical Studies



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Do I know beyond a shadow of a doubt?

Just the Facts - Luke 1

Just the Facts – Luke 1:1-4

Luke got it right. Knowing and having supernatural courage (faith) about Jesus is what it is all about. He made it his mission to present “the facts”. He investigated it down to the last detail.

Imagine having been there and seen and known so many who experience Jesus. Imagine getting it right and writing about it. It is ours and we can know too. What a story. Thanks for men like Luke.

The Uniqueness In You 

Brittney shares in John Chapter 9 about the uniqueness we have in Jesus.



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Scripture

John 9 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Sixth Sign: Healing a Man Born Blind

As he was passing by, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him: “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”

“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” Jesus answered. “This came about so that God’s works might be displayed in him. We must do the works of him who sent me while it is day. Night is coming when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”

After he said these things he spit on the ground, made some mud from the saliva, and spread the mud on his eyes. “Go,” he told him, “wash in the pool of Siloam” (which means “Sent”). So he left, washed, and came back seeing.

His neighbors and those who had seen him before as a beggar said, “Isn’t this the one who used to sit begging?” Some said, “He’s the one.” Others were saying, “No, but he looks like him.”

He kept saying, “I’m the one.”

10 So they asked him, “Then how were your eyes opened?”

11 He answered, “The man called Jesus made mud, spread it on my eyes, and told me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash.’ So when I went and washed I received my sight.”

12 “Where is he?” they asked.

“I don’t know,” he said.

The Healed Man’s Testimony

13 They brought the man who used to be blind to the Pharisees. 14 The day that Jesus made the mud and opened his eyes was a Sabbath.15 Then the Pharisees asked him again how he received his sight.

“He put mud on my eyes,” he told them. “I washed and I can see.”

16 Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, because he doesn’t keep the Sabbath.” But others were saying, “How can a sinful man perform such signs?” And there was a division among them.

17 Again they asked the blind man, “What do you say about him, since he opened your eyes?”

“He’s a prophet,” he said.

18 The Jews did not believe this about him—that he was blind and received sight—until they summoned the parents of the one who had received his sight.

19 They asked them, “Is this your son, the one you say was born blind? How then does he now see?”

20 “We know this is our son and that he was born blind,” his parents answered. 21 “But we don’t know how he now sees, and we don’t know who opened his eyes. Ask him; he’s of age. He will speak for himself.” 22 His parents said these things because they were afraid of the Jews, since the Jews had already agreed that if anyone confessed him as the Messiah, he would be banned from the synagogue. 23 This is why his parents said, “He’s of age; ask him.”

24 So a second time they summoned the man who had been blind and told him, “Give glory to God. We know that this man is a sinner.”

25 He answered, “Whether or not he’s a sinner, I don’t know. One thing I do know: I was blind, and now I can see!”

26 Then they asked him, “What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?”

27 “I already told you,” he said, “and you didn’t listen. Why do you want to hear it again? You don’t want to become his disciples too, do you?”

28 They ridiculed him: “You’re that man’s disciple, but we’re Moses’s disciples. 29 We know that God has spoken to Moses. But this man—we don’t know where he’s from.”

30 “This is an amazing thing!” the man told them. “You don’t know where he is from, and yet he opened my eyes. 31 We know that God doesn’t listen to sinners, but if anyone is God-fearing and does his will, he listens to him. 32 Throughout history no one has ever heard of someone opening the eyes of a person born blind. 33 If this man were not from God, he wouldn’t be able to do anything.”

34 “You were born entirely in sin,” they replied, “and are you trying to teach us?” Then they threw him out.

Spiritual Blindness

35 Jesus heard that they had thrown the man out, and when he found him, he asked, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?”

36 “Who is he, Sir, that I may believe in him?” he asked.

37 Jesus answered, “You have seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you.”

38 “I believe, Lord!” he said, and he worshiped him.

39 Jesus said, “I came into this world for judgment, in order that those who do not see will see and those who do see will become blind.”

40 Some of the Pharisees who were with him heard these things and asked him, “We aren’t blind too, are we?”

41 “If you were blind,” Jesus told them, “you wouldn’t have sin. But now that you say, ‘We see,’ your sin remains.

Christian Standard Bible (CSB)  The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

 

Is self-control a discipline that is hiding along with the other fruits of the Spirit of God?

Self-control is a fruit of the Spirit. It is physical and emotional self-mastery, particularly in situations of intense provocation or temptation. It isn’t talked about alot and I surely can use more of it in my life. I can use a ton of it. Paul reminds me “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22

Before I go too much further, it is worth pointing out while it is called “self-control”, it comes from the Holy Spirit. It is not something I can just will, on my own, to happen. But it is still self-control. I have to make choices.

Beware of Criticizing Others 

Judge not, that you be not judged. —Matthew 7:1

Jesus’ instructions with regard to judging others is very simply put; He says, “Don’t.” The average Christian is the most piercingly critical individual known. Criticism is one of the ordinary activities of people, but in the spiritual realm nothing is accomplished by it. The effect of criticism is the dividing up of the strengths of the one being criticized. The Holy Spirit is the only one in the proper position to criticize, and He alone is able to show what is wrong without hurting and wounding.

It is impossible to enter into fellowship with God when you are in a critical mood.Criticism serves to make you harsh, vindictive, and cruel, and leaves you with the soothing and flattering idea that you are somehow superior to others.Jesus says that as His disciple you should cultivate a temperament that is never critical.

This will not happen quickly but must be developed over a span of time. You must constantly beware of anything that causes you to think of yourself as a superior person.There is no escaping the penetrating search of my life by Jesus. If I see the little speck in your eye, it means that I have a plank of timber in my own (see Matthew 7:3-5).

Every wrong thing that I see in you, God finds in me. Every time I judge, I condemn myself (see Romans 2:17-24). Stop having a measuring stick for other people. There is always at least one more fact, which we know nothing about, in every person’s situation.

The first thing God does is to give us a thorough spiritual cleaning. After that, there is no possibility of pride remaining in us. I have never met a person I could despair of, or lose all hope for, after discerning what lies in me apart from the grace of God.

Source: Beware of Criticizing Others | My Utmost For His Highest

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Am I caught up in the wrong priorities?

Right standing with God

Right standing with God

We get caught up in the wrong things. We don’t have the right priorities.

What church do we go to or what denomination do we belong to? How good is the worship team or choir? What school did we graduate from? What neighborhood do we live in?

What is my title at work? How much money do we earn? What kind of car do we drive?

The list goes on and on.

Jesus challenges us down to our core. Here are some important things that count with Jesus.

  • What is my relationship with our loving God and Father?
  • Do I love God and Him only?
  • Do I seek with all my heart to please Him every day?
  • Do I love the people in my life the way He loves me?

That is all that is important. Jesus challenges us to live that way.

God has a goal in mind for us. He wants us to live in right standing before Him. Jesus is the way to that right standing.

“It’s who you are and the way you live that count before God.” ~Jesus (John 4:24 The Message)

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Fun at family night with wholesome dancing! We train families to reign!

We know how to have some fun at our family oriented Train to Reign program.

Family is the most vital relationship and the one under the most pressure and attack.

Throughout the year, we welcome individuals, couples, and families from around the world who are seeking to strengthen their relationships – with God, within their own families, and with their fellow believers.

Every session, individuals, couples, and families from around the world are transformed, healed, and renewed. Barriers to forgiveness, personal growth, and hope are overcome in a supportive and intimate environment. Join us in this safe and holy place where painful and complex situations can be worked through – a place of hope and healing.

Learn more and register

Teaching topics include:

  • The Plan of God for Family
  • Duty vs Intimacy
  • Fatherhood
  • Communication
  • Covering
  • Resolving Conflict
  • Defeating Parenting Fears
  • Discipline
  • …and more!


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What does Jesus ask us to do about being kind?

I desperately need more kindness and compassion in my life. I need to judge less and love more. That is the way of Jesus. That is what Jesus calls me to do. I know I want others to be kind to me. I need to be kind and compassionate no matter what.

Kindness is the quality of compassion and generosity, characteristic of God’s dealings towards the weak and poor, and demanded of believers. The kindness is also shown in the words and deeds of Jesus the Messiah.

“Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd.” ~Jesus | Matthew 9:36 (NASB)

Do We Become Angels When We Die?

There are always lots of questions about angels. One common one is, do we become angels when we die? Danielle Bernock tackles this question. She is an international award-winning author. Her works include: Emerging With Wings: A True Story of Lies, Pain, And The LOVE that HealsA Bird Named Payn, and Love’s Manifesto. Her new book Because You Matter: How to Take Ownership of Your Life so You Can Really Live will be released fall 2019.

People believe all kinds of things about what happens when we die. One is that people become angels. Another is that we become flowers in God’s garden. But are these things true? Some may genuinely believe these things. Others may just be holding onto a nice idea while dealing with their grief.

Let’s dig into the subject about angels. Do we become angels when we die or not? How do we know? Where would anyone get the idea in the first place?

Do we become angels when we die? No. We do not become angels when we die. Humans are one kind of God’s creation, and angels are another. To say we become angels is to say we stop being humans.

Read more here:

Do We Become Angels When We Die?



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You don’t expect to bury your children.

Grief and Horror

Grief and Horror

She is 12 years old. She got sick. She died.

Everyone is beside themselves in grief and horror. You don’t expect to bury your children. It’s just not right. What kind of God allows that to happen?

Jesus arrives on the scene at the request of the father. The father believed in Jesus.

When he goes in to the room where her dead body is lying, Jesus says very little other than “Little girl, get up”. At that, she was up and walking around! They were all beside themselves with joy. Amazed. Stunned. Ecstatic.

This is stunning.

This is the power of God in Jesus.

We have the same Holy Spirit in us.

May I live my life knowing of this stunning power.

“Little girl, get up.” ~Jesus to a dead 12 year old girl (Mark 5:40-43 The Message Bible)

Another time Lazarus passed away. Jesus knew what was going to happen. He was going to raise Lazarus from the dead.

Yet Jesus shared the grief of those who were morning. What did Jesus do?

Jesus wept. Jesus was deeply moved by the emotions of those who were grieving.



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What Will God Use Your Situation For? Can we be happy and joyous in our trials?

Zoe shares on what it means to keep a positive attitude when God as you walk through trials.

Scripture

James 1:11-13 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

For the sun rises and, together with the scorching wind, dries up the grass; its flower falls off, and its beautiful appearance perishes. In the same way, the rich person will wither away while pursuing his activities.

Happy is the one who endures trials, because when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.

No one undergoing a trial should say, “I am being tempted by God,” since God is not tempted by evil, and he himself doesn’t tempt anyone.

James 1:2 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

Consider it a great joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you experience various trials,

Christian Standard Bible (CSB) The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

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