Author: Andrew Minion

When You Don’t Know What to Do

O our God, wilt thou not judge them? For we have no might against this great company that cometh against us; neither know we what to do: but our eyes are upon thee” 2nd Chronicles 20:12. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve been in situations I thought were hopeless. Situations where there just was no way I could do anything to dig out of the hole. In our text three armies were united against Israel [vs 10] and Israel was utterly helpless against them. So they called out to God and prayed these words of verse 12. I like this prayer a lot ‘neither know we what to do: but our eyes are upon thee’.  In the margin of my Bible here beside this verse I’ve added several additional verses that are a comfort and a help to me in such dark times. I hope you’ll make them your own as I have: Isaiah 41:10 Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. What a help that has been to untold millions over the centuries. You should memorize it. #2 Jeremiah 33:3 Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not. #3 Joshua 1:9 Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.  Job 13:15, Psalm 138:3 are great too and I always include Psalm 27:13-14 “I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. 14 Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.

For some these great scriptures are mere strangers passing on the street. For the sincere earnest believer these words are like the very hand of God wiping the tears from our face. It is like that miraculous day where our Lord was heading to a man’s house to heal his daughter. As he went through that crowded city street [Luke 8:40-56] many people bumped into him unawares and yet none were healed, none were changed, none even noticed they had just touched the very son of God. But one desperate woman had been following him. In her desperate need of help she drew closer and closer in this crowd and finally came up behind him and took hold of the hem of his garment. Immediately she healed of her infirmity! Why? Why was she healed while others were completely unaffected? Why do the very words of God walk among us all over the globe and millions hear them but are untouched by them? They are powerful words, miraculous words uttered from the very mouth of God. When an unbeliever ‘bumps into these words’, not mingling them with faith, they touch his tongue as if a stranger bumped into a stranger. Oh but add faith and these words turn in the heart and speak “who touched me”. They become a gentle hand of help in time of need.

 

 

The Burglar That Escapes Undetected

Back many years ago I took the entrance exam for a large Police Department in Florida (and was later hired). I had to spend the night to be there for the long day of tests & exams so I had driven in the night before and gotten a hotel room. The next morning early I discovered that my truck had been burglarized! My truck was ransacked and tools, stereo and other odds and ends were stolen. The thief had broken in through my camper’s sliding window and breaking the latch. It was clearly the work of an amateur. The really good burglars pride themselves on getting in & out undetected. They leave no evidence, no prints, nothing out of place. They sneak in, steal one or two things that often go unmissed and sneak out with the doors locked just as they found them. Their goal is that the crime will not even be discovered. Have you been burglarized? Let’s put it to the test and see if something monumentally important has been stolen from you that you didn’t even notice was missing! Turn in your Bible to 1st John 5:7 and lets check to see if any of the words that God gave you have been stolen. Your Bible should read “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” If it doesn’t…the words of God have been stolen from your Bible. Some thieves try to tell you those words were ‘made up by men’ in 323 AD and don’t really belong in the Bible, but the fact is this verse was being quoted in writings by students of the Apostles as early as 70 A.D. Let’s look at another one: In Acts 8 the Lord sent the apostle Philip to go meet and teach a fella who wanted to know about Jesus. The fella was completely confused and so Philip met him and told him all about Jesus and showed him some scriptures to prove it. Afterwards the man wanted to be baptized and Philip said something vitally important to him in verse 8:37 “And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God”. WOW! Talk about a major league important piece of Scripture!! It isn’t at all a surprise to me to see Bibles that have removed this verse completely or cut out the most important part. If I were the great thief and liar called Lucifer I would use every resource at my disposal to create Bibles from which I’ve removed some words here and there…like a good burglar. There are many hundreds of stolen words, words of the Living God, which sneaky burglars & thieves have stolen from all newer versions of the Bible since 1881. However if you want a Bible that has ALL the words God gave get yourself a 1611 King James Bible.

 

 

 

If You’re Looking for a Ship You’ll Find One

The book of Jonah has always been one of my favorite Old Testament books. It is full of ‘life lessons’ from start to finish. Chapter 1:2 tells us that God told Jonah “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me” and verse 3 sais “But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD”. It would help you tremendously to read the whole book of Jonah, it is only a few chapters. In our text though, Jonah has been shown the will of the Lord. If that wasn’t enough, God told him plainly what He wanted Jonah to do. No doubt many reading this column are thinking “I sure wish God would show me His will for my life” or perhaps “I sure wish God would tell me plainly what He wants me to do”. Well there is good news, HE HAS! If you look closely at the Bible God has plainly told us all exactly what He wants from us and what His will is for us. Let me illustrate: We’ve all had someone hold a flashlight for us while we search for something and half the time it seemed like they were pointing that light at everywhere but where we needed it pointed. In much the same way God’s will is like a beam from a flashlight. He points it where you are supposed to look! Until you look where He’s pointing his words and His will you won’t see what his will is for you. So God told Jonah what to do but Jonah flatly refused to do what God wanted. He decided he absolutely wasn’t going to go where God directed him. So in verse 3 we read that Jonah went looking for a ship to take him anywhere but Nineveh. We pastors see this all the time. When someone is looking for a ship to escape God’s will, you can bet they’ll find one. It doesn’t matter which ship, any old clunker boat will do. Many rebels like Jonah have we pastors seen. Those who refuse to submit their will to God. Those who refuse to submit their heart to God. Those who refuse to surrender the throne of their life to God. Mark this down in your bible. If someone is looking for a ship to get them out of God’s will, they’ll find one. The S.S. DO-AS-I-PLEASE is just waiting for them to pay the fare. It is heartbreaking to see the high price some people have paid for a trip out of God’s will. I’ve seen many pay a fare for a trip they regretted with all their heart.

 

An Unmatched Horror Story

In the Bible in Acts chapter 26 the Apostle Paul is standing before king Agrippa and here he gives an account of himself unto Agrippa. I encourage you to read the chapter, especially verses 1-29 before continuing in this article. Paul’s telling of his story was so plainly honest and stirring that when he finished even king Agrippa exclaimed “…Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian”. “ALMOST”; such a sad word in this case. Several of the men in our church are skilled at hunting and fishing. They have amazingly real-looking bass and deer decorating their walls to commemorate their skills. One in particular has zebra, gazelle, kudu, alligator, buffalo, elk and moose on his walls. Each one looks so real you ‘almost’ expect them to take off running any moment. They look ALMOST alive; as if frozen in time, ready to break free of that stillness and dash away any second. But then reality settles in and you realize ‘no, they will not dash away’. The fantastically real looking ducks won’t explode skyward ever again. The Bass on the wall plaque wouldn’t notice if you put a whole cup of ‘red wiggler worms’ right in his plastic mouth. Why not? Because ALMOST alive is totally dead. ALMOST real is the same as completely fake. When a Doctor tells a waiting family “we ALMOST saved his life”, what he just said is “we completely failed to save his life…he’s dead”. {By the way I know a Doctor who has never yet lost a single patient who came to him}! You’ve heard the old saying “close counts in horseshoe’s and hand-grenades”; let me add that when it comes to being “SAVED” by grace through faith [Ephesians 2:8-9] you either ARE or you’re not. There IS NO ALMOST saved. Imagine if you and I took that trophy bass mount down from the wall in my friend’s house and we took it to a pond and laid it there in the water. If we get a few lawn chairs and watch it all day, will it swim away? Will it slowly revive and start flailing? No, of course not. If I tapped your hand and said “hey look…its ALMOST moving”; wouldn’t you put your hand to my forehead to check my temperature? NO!! It isn’t ALMOST moving. It will never do so again short of a complete miracle from God to make it alive again. IF you are wondering what salvation is like – THAT’S IT! It is like the dead being made ALIVE again! It is as if the Lord Jesus Christ told them to roll away the stone from your tomb and called your name and said “COME FORTH” [John 11:43]. Tell me ma’am, are you tired of being ‘almost’ a Christian? Tell me Sir, are you tired of ‘almost’ having a relationship with God? Calvary Baptist Church has the real thing for real people who want a real Christianity. Bring your family and come see what it’s like!

A Happy Face and A Smiling Heart

In recent years scientific studies have confirmed several things that Bible believers have known for thousands of years. That is not to say that such discoveries lend any weight to the inherent truths of Scripture; nor is it surprising to us when science finally discovers something the Bible revealed thousands of years ago. For example, in JAMA International Medicine in 2016 it was ‘presented’ that women who attended any kind of ‘religious’ service more than once a week had a 33% lower death rate than non-religious counterparts of equal circumstance over a 16 year period. Another study found that those who held a religious view and who attended services regularly had a 55% lower death rate than atheists over the 18 year review period. Anyone with a King James Bible could’ve easily predicted those findings based on numerous Scriptures. For example Proverbs 15:15 says “All the days of the afflicted are evil: but he that is of a merry heart hath a continual feast.” Verse 15:13 there says “A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.” One that is more widely known even among unbelievers is Proverbs 17:22 “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.” Recently I saw a young man in a video playing a piano so beautifully that I was moved in my heart. Then I noticed that on his left arm, which was much shorter than a normal arm, he had just one little finger type growth. On the right hand I saw that there were missing fingers as well, but despite these massive limitations he played more beautifully with what he had than many who have no such limits. In fact he played wondrously and Proverbs 18:14 came to my mind. “Over in Ecclesiastes 7:3 the great king Solomon said that “sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better” and the wise find this to be true. Yet clearly we all know someone who has a happy cheerful and uplifting demeanor. That ‘happy face and outlook’ is as good as the best medicine! It is good to be around those who have it and conversely, it is discouraging to be around those who don’t. It is told that “a preacher driving along at night saw a fellow about to jump from a high bridge stopped his car and jumped out and ran to the fellow shouting wait don’t jump, tell me what the problem is” and after the fellow finished his sad story they both jumped. That’s the way it is! What is my point? Turn things that are out of your control over to the Lord and let him be God. Then brush yourself off, find some verses of comfort in God’s word and pick a hymn to sing!