citionahill

God’s trees bear good Fruits!

One of the important stages in our lives as believers is the growing up stage and moving on to the next step in maturing in the faith and catching up with the learnings that we have long since been blinded to while we were yet sinners. This begs the question: so what do I do after this wonderful gift of a new life in Christ? Whats next?

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If you only dare to look for the word “fruit” in the Bible, the KJV will lead you to a couple of passages, here’s a few of them:

John the Baptiser says in Luke 3:8-9

8 Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to [our] father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

9 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

in Luke 13:9 Jesus tells of a parable that alludes to this “bearing fruit” concept which also reiterates…

And if it bear fruit, [well]: and if not, [then] after that thou shalt cut it down.

Yes, its pretty clear that Christians who proclaim they are, should bear fruit in their being. It seems quite obvious what the outcome be if they didn’t.

What type of fruits are we talking about here? Its not anything we can really muster on our own without sensing we’re only trying to be someone we’re not or for other people who knows the real life we live to say its mere showing off, or temporal that the effects are fleeting. They really can tell cant they. We’re talking about fruits that can only come from the root of everything we believe in – Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour.

in John 15:4-5, Jesus says:

4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.

5 I am the vine, ye [are] the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

In Galatians we are taught of several fruits that are essential for believers to have. Its time we reflected on our own lives about these things, not to say we have this and that and so we finally got it, definitely not, but to see if we have followed Christ’s example about all of them in spirit and in truth.

Galatians 5:22,23:

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

  • Love – The greatest of all; unconditional even unto death for those that don’t deserve it
  • Joy – true gladness of heart coming from the hope in the Lord for everything
  • Peace – True security and calmness in the Lord in any situation
  • Longsuffering – Patience and endurance while in the world, undergoing temptations, persecutions, handling afflictions
  • Gentleness – true gentleness in character and demeanor, integrity. Top notch moral values
  • Goodness – Kindness of heart for others in need and lost, not only ones close to you which should have been your first priority anyway.
  • Faith – One that doesn’t rely on sight, knowledge or on oneself or others but only in God. Faith that can move mountains.
  • Meekness – true Humility. Accepting mistakes. Not wanting recognition for ones’ achievements, letting the person have the glory understanding that your Father in heaven knows everything. Knowing that everything on earth is temporal and seeking the heavenly treasures of God instead.
  • Temperance – Self Control: in arguments, in getting angry, at a time of testing/ temptation, following that still small voice reminding you what you ought to do instead of satisfying that urge, always resisting the devil (see James 4:7)

Jesus wanted us to glorify the Father by bearing much fruit, lets do so by following how He spoke, responded, acted and thought.

John 15:8 says-

Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.

 

The next season

Observe the pigs, in their lifetime, they don’t do much but eat, make a mess, sleep and wait for the day of the butcher. They serve their purpose in life feeding the guests. Compare these to the cows that give milk, do some work, then provide its meat, it goes a long way serving the farmer. So does sheep that gives its coat and grows a new one before it also is required later for the slaughter. Mind you farmers treat cows and sheep better than them filthy pigs.

Did you ever noticed that grain crops need to be sown only once, later harvested then much later the waste thrown to the fire? After all this you see the farmer in the next season doing the same thing but with new seeds to grow fresh stalks of wheat, rice or corn…

Spring time breakout

Spring time breakout

Id really rather be a fruit tree that one can expect to pick fruits from in season never having to plant all over again. Of course it takes a few years to grow from seeds to a mature tree, but to the gardener that prunes and cultivates it, its worth the wait. He knows this tree will bear much fruit in the next season.

You have a God that loves you more than these. He treats you as His own child, He wants you to grow and be fruitful now and in the next season. Our wisdom is so negligible compared to His. Were so content just to get by in this world, spoiling in the gifts we get from Him, that we’re alive and were happy and free to do what we like. We hate and curse Him in our pain, forgetting our own mistakes and the much discipline that we need. Instead of enduring the hurt and learning from our failures and allowing Him to heal us, we respond in arrogance and rebellion.

Consider this, after doing your best to recover them, what would you finally do with a helplessly dying pig or the disease stricken milk-less cow or a field of dead wheat stalks or a crooked, fruitless tree in the middle of your yard?

In a separate season, the season of cleaning up, all these will be destroyed and burned up.

Would you soon bear fruit and make it to the next season?

The Battle for Truth

No matter how much we strive, the truth remains.

We are told not to get fooled by the subtlety of the world…

2 Corinthians 11:3

But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.

There are people who “subtly creep” in, whose intentions are wicked since the beginning…

Jude 1:4

For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

In the last days its been said  about scoffers and/or mockers.

2Peter 3:3

Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts,

We are also warned of false teachers.

2Peter2:1

But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.

 

We heard about men avoiding the Word and taking teachers for themselves to send a “tickling” message to their ears. Messages that they want to hear.

2Timothy 4:3

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

Were told these people want to avoid the truth as it doesn’t fit their desire.
The wicked will be wicked and they are “driven by their own lusts”.
God has given them over to their own delusions so much as believe the lie they tell themselves.

2Thessalonians 2:11,12

11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:

12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

By grace you are here today, being given the discernment to hear the truth and thus know the lies and half-truths when you hear them. The liars and their lies wont endure long.
Remember the passage about the enemy scattering seeds of weeds (tares) among the good ones?

This is how the enemy works. Matthew 13:24-30

24  Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:

25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.

26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.

27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?

28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?

29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.

30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

There can only be one truth and one source. He gave us His Spirit to direct us and give us wisdom and discernment and bringing to remembrance the things which Jesus said and taught.

In John 14:26, Jesus Christ says-

But the Comforter, [which is] the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

It should be our practice to spend our time reading the word of God not only for encouraging ourselves in the Lord as David did on 1 Samuel 30:6…

And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God.

 

but also to feed our mind with the words of God.

Matthew 4:4 says…

But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

 

His Word is alive and powerful it is also  “profitable for reproof and correction”. It separates the soulish portion of our being from what is spiritual.

 

Hebrews 4:12

For the word of God [is] quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and [is] a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

To be able to discern according to God’s will, one will have to ask God to set his mind to the desires of God’s Spirit rather than the fleshly desires that connects to this world. Normally when I’m in one of life’s crossroads, I try to take the way that least feeds my pride. It ends up better.

Romans 8:5-6-

5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.

6 For to be carnally minded [is] death; but to be spiritually minded [is] life and peace.

 

Secondly, praying will enable us to avoid temptation.

Matthew 26:41

Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed [is] willing, but the flesh [is] weak.

 

It shouldn’t be different the way we talk to the Lord in our quiet time from the way we pray when confronted in a bus crowd by a foul mouthed teenager asking for money or at home when praying to the Lord for guidance as to how and what to say to the person knocking at the door trying to preach a strange doctrine or on the driveway as we notice an old neighbor we don’t get to talk to so often.

 

Note this phrase: “subtly creeping in”. Remember, there’s only one Truth. The other one is a lie. If what you know is not a lie according to God’s Spirit telling you through His word, then you know which one to believe.

Jesus said in John 15:26…

But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, [even] the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

Therefore test the spirits:

1John 4:1

1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:

 

God bless you with more discernment and maturity in your faith.

Where’s your wedding clothes?

Did you know that you are invited to a big celebration after this life? Jesus tells an eye opener story that really concerns the future and what difference today’s decision can make.

In the parable of the wedding banquet in Matthew 22:1 – 14;

1 . And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said,

2 The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,

3 And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.

4 Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and [my] fatlings [are] killed, and all things [are] ready: come unto the marriage.

5 But they made light of [it], and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise:

6 And the remnant took his servants, and entreated [them] spitefully, and slew [them].

7 But when the king heard [thereof], he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.

8 Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.

9 Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.

10 So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests.

11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:

12 And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.

13 Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast [him] into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

14 For many are called, but few [are] chosen.

 

What a tragic end for that person. The king was obviously insulted. Despite the fact that the wedding feast was now open to everyone, it doesn’t mean anyone can just barge in not in the proper dress code. This guy was considered a gatecrasher. Great was his punishment – unexpected and terrible!

There’s a great multitude of people who don’t care what happens in their life as long as they enjoy it, they either don’t believe in hell or heaven or does it matter to them at all. They have “other things to do”. Living the Busy Life. And since the practice of living a “religious” life is ‘too difficult’ and ‘too serious”, it really doesn’t fit their lifestyle. They’ll have their king’s calling soon.

Its bad enough to know that some people are careless as they are godless, but there’s many people out there who also think they’re good and ready to go. Confident they’ve done a lot of good things already, they have nothing to worry about as they will definitely “go to heaven” when they die. They keep doing good things while they can. Even others say they believe in ‘god’ , they go to church ‘religiously’ 3 times a week and do godly duties – doing things for the ‘lord’. This leads them to think they are better off than others and consider themselves godly and saved. I pray that this message may open our eyes and ears to the Truth.

To enter His presence, we need to be clothed properly, we need to be right with God. God Himself desires us to be right with Him. And the way to true Salvation is not a secret.

The Holy Bible is the Word of God (yes, He can use any translation to bring you to Him, I had the NIV when I got saved, at one point, He gave me the Hebrew and Greek text translations to help me study but eventually settled me in the KJV, His true innerrant word, incorruptible forever), it is truth and it is trustworthy, in a sense gravity! – from which I summarized below the basic and fundamental points to know in getting saved and it is applicable RIGHT NOW to YOU – whoever you are, wherever you came from and however sinful (or how good-already) you think you are…

  1. We are God’s masterpiece creation being the only ones formed in His image. God loves us so much, He even gave us authority over all the other earth creatures created before we were. see Genesis 1:26-30.
  2. Adam being the first man wasn’t a robot, he had the freedom to choose as a gift from GOD. He wasn’t compelled to sin in the garden, he chose not to obey God’s instruction, so sin entered the world through him. see Romans 5:12.
  3. Sin separates us from God and the punishment for it is death (both earthly and eternally-in Hell) see Romans 6:23.
  4. Being all descendants of Adam, we are ALL guilty of this sin and deserve death. see Romans 5:12. No one is excluded, even though you do a lot of good and godly things and be spiritual and minding your own business, etc… see Romans 3:23
  5. God wants us back to Himself. It is His desire and will. see 1 John 3:1
  6. But He is pure, holy, just and righteous – no darkness or wickedness can stand in His presence. see Leviticus 11:44. also see an example of the power in the holiness of God in the passages of 1 Samuel.
  7. The only way to restore us and be reconciled to a pure and holy God is by an acceptable pure and unblemished sacrifice being given for us. see Romans 5:10. God taught us this concept of sacrifice as early as Adam’s time. see Genesis 4.
  8. So by His mercy and grace, He sent His Son from Himself (begotten) to take our place. see Romans 5:15. Being God’s only begotten Son, He is the only acceptable sacrifice – the Lamb of God. Hebrews 9:14 also 1 Peter 1:19.
  9. He took the form of a man and He is Jesus Christ. Hebrews 2:14 – 18. He taught us the mind of the Father while He lived on earth (study the gospels in Matthew to John and the testimonies in the New Testament scriptures). He is God’s example for us of an obedient child. When it was time for Him to do His Father’s purpose, He went through suffering, shedding His blood and ultimately died on the cross for us.
  10. He died in order that the Will and testament of God can be put into effect. As it is that any Will and Testament can only take effect when the person dies. see whole of Hebrews 9.Willingly, Jesus our Savior did all this and shed His blood to reconcile us to the Father. see Romans 5:19 and 2 Corinthians 5:18.
  11. The next move is to humble ourselves and accept that we have sinned. With God’s grace and discipline, having heard His calling, we are able to see our own wickedness and faults, our hearts, filled with true sorrow for the self-centered life we lived and the desire to depart from that path of evil and turn to God. The Lord led you here for a reason, its time to turn to Him. see Peter 3:9 ~ “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance”.
  12. Finally, be sprinkled with the blood of Jesus Christ (to cover, smear, put a mark on the defiled objects that need to be purified) and be made holy to God. Since we are defiled by our sin, we need cleansing. This explains why the shed blood of Jesus Christ is necessary. We need it so as to make us holy to enter His presence. see Hebrews 9 again.

We can be clothed and confident to enter God’s presence (Isaiah 61:10). To be able to enter His Kingdom, and not to be kicked out into the darkness. Let’s not remain ignorant! – Its not about doing or feeling good, its about being truly saved. The gift of Eternal Life is waiting for you.

Romans 10:9 – 10

9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

If you can pray this simple prayer, and sincerely:

  • Lord Father, Great and awesome God.
  • Thank you for calling me today.
  • Save me by your name and hear my prayer.
  • I confess my sin and I detest it and I turn away from it.
  • See my heart’s desire and Forgive me Oh Lord .
  • I thankfully receive Jesus Christ your Son as my Savior and Lord
  • who died on the cross for me and shed His blood to cleanse my sin.
  • Work in me dear God and use me for your purposes from this day on.
  • In Jesus Christ’s name I pray, Amen.

The grace of God is on you for we serve a risen Savior! On the third day after His death on the cross, Jesus rose from the grave. This is the power of His promise for you, a life everlasting with the Father! What a wonderful God! Praise Him!

John 5:24 says:

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

Understand that this is the first step. Having accepted Jesus Christ, you have been saved by the ‘washing of restoration’ (which is by His shed blood – you are now reconciled to the Father) but that’s not all – also by the renewing by the Holy Spirit, changes will happen in your life, the Holy Spirit does it, work with Him.

Titus 3:5 says:

Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

Being restored to God and also renewed by the Holy Spirit, we are able to do all things. This includes being changed in our ways, our responses and our mindset in this “perfecting” work that God brings about in our lives. I pray that you will grow in faith and avoid becoming stubborn or hard-hearted along the way. as Hebrews 3:7 – 8 says:

7 Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice,

8 Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness:

 

The next step is to bear fruit in your walk.

  • Share to others what God just did or is doing right now in your life.
  • Read the Holy Bible (KJV) and fill yourself with the food of the Spirit – His Word, the life of Jesus Christ and what He taught. All the Bible talks about Jesus Christ and how God loves us, and wants whats good for us. He has an inheritance prepared for us (see 1 Peter 1:4) unless we allow the enemy to trick us and miss it (see Colossians 2).
  • Grow deeper your roots in God’s word. see the parable of the sower passages on Mark 4. Follow God’s commands as He reveals it to you. Ask and He will show you.
  • Avoid the worldly things that choke the message of God and put all things full surrender to Him. see the “My 3 enemies” message.
  • Distractions, discouragements and temptations are sure to be in the way of perfection for the children of God (who follows his words), but remain in Him and flee from evil: avoid your usual hang-outs, don’t listen to your worldly friends or strangers, avoid the worldly things you used to love, they are a trap and a stumbling block to your growth, instead go closer to God, He is faithful and will carry you through and will rescue you in times of difficulties. Putting your trust in man (that includes yourself) is useless. A lot of true Christians know this and we advise you to endure and overcome in the name of Jesus Christ.
  • Learn how to sing Psalm 23 in your heart to flee from trouble.

You are now living the life that belongs to God, treat it how God wants you to treat it.

God bless your heart with this message as it did mine.

The Peace of God be with you.

My 3 enemies

In my study about the word ‘offended’ and its contexts in the scriptures, I came upon this parable of the sower beginning with Mark 4:3.

 3 Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow:

4 And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up.

5 And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth:

6 But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away.

7 And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit.

8 And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred.

9 And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

Later, Jesus explains the meaning of the parable to the disciples on Mark 4:

14 The sower soweth the word.

15 And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.

16 And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness;

17 And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended.

18 And these are they which are sown among thorns; such as hear the word,

19 And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.

20 And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive [it], and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred.

One of the two learnings I got from the passage:

That there are 3 enemies as long as you’re alive; the other one is that your heart can be in 3 conditions while the word of God is being revealed to all. I will post the other one later, for now, notice we got 3 enemies in life as we speak…

a.) The devil – when seeds fall in the wayside and not the heart of the garden, this enemy is quick to snatch the message up and its gone. Hearing the sermon in church dont sink in, reading a verse printed on paper or a verse posted on facebook dont seem to mean anything after being distracted by the next person next to you. Your life goes on for the worse. The result is prolonged bondage to sin and it continues as usual in your life. Be reminded of this and know that the enemy always finds something to throw in our way, to divert us from knowing the truth. False teachings and half truths are all over, waves and waves of doctrine, lies dressing themselves up as “traditions”. Not reading the Word of God or understanding it spells the difference between ‘true’ (Bible -believing) and “plain” Christians. Ask the Lord to reveal the Truth to you and He will freely give it see James 1:5.

b.) The world and its ways – when seeds fall among thorns or weeds. These are the cares that gets us anxious, excited, emotional; the deception of having the ability to have anything; and the desires we have for “stuff” that keeps us feeling “OK” and “fulfilled”. They choke the word and leave us empty, dissatisfied and miserable. Though we were “touched” by the spiritual lesson or encounter we just had, these “distractions” are always in the way and we notice we have a very short endurance span and forget to strengthen ourselves in the one true source of Peace, the Lord God. The result is: we bear no fruit – complacent Christians, “no changes” (same old-same old) stagnant for years just like the servant who buried his master’s money on the ground for fear see Mathew 25:14-25. Fruit-less Christians – this type of Christianity or ‘godliness’ will be ‘cut off’ (John 15:2).

c.) The flesh (within you) – when seeds fall on stoney ground. Notice how the emphasis on the stone. It shows hardness and though its got soil or ground, its shallow and doesn’t  promote real growth. We are so engrossed upon receiving God’s message, but since we rely on emotions and self will, we don’t ask God to soften our hearts and put His message deep within it, our roots don’t grow. Later when difficulties in life or persecution arise, when we are challenged in our faith we get offended, we get upset and even give up. Imagine yourself as a wilted plant whose roots didn’t have enough soil to grow into. The result is: discouragement and falling back to sin, as evident from the historical cycles that persist in our life be it in our relationships  with parents, husband, wife, kids, friends, your boss or people in authority over you, co-workers and customers; in your choices; finances; careers; businesses; even health, injuries, driving habits, bad decisions here and there and the like…

Lastly, the passage says in verse 9 – ‘to him who has ears to hear, let him hear’. Please dont have this lesson land on the wayside. God bless your heart and may He cultivate this seed for growth.

 

We’re Breaking Ground!

hello

 

Praise the Lord God Almighty, the True and Ever Living God for His mercy, providence and grace for who He is and for all the things He has done. And that finally a new dawn is breaking in my life. Its been a dream to be doing this for Him and truly a great pleasure and honor to be serving God in this ministry reaching people from across the globe at realtime, at long last it’s here! May the Lord’s Kingdom come and bless all His people in this His Glorious day!

To God be the Glory, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen!

Don B.