IN THIS ISSUE:
Overcoming Life Digest Past Archive Menu
Life After Death — Betty Miller
Origin of Covenants — R.S. “Bud” Miller
Share and Tell — Testimonies
Spiritual Warfare — Avoid Worldly Entanglements
Exposing Satan’s Devices — The Snare of Pride and Beauty
End Times — War On The Saints
Prophetic Voice To The Church — The Wind of God
Little Foxes (Little Compromises) — Overcoming Procrastination
Lessons from the Titanic — Special Guest, Rick Joyner
Book Review — The Coming Revival
Poetry Corner — He Is Risen
Purpose and Vision — Subscription and Publication Information
by Betty Miller
All over the world during the Easter season, multitudes will gather in churches to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ and hear about life after death. Many will suppress a yawn and attend their “yearly church service” to please their spouse. Others will attend out of curiosity; still others, because it makes them “feel good” to think about the cycle of life and new things growing out of death.
Pastors will wax eloquent before large crowds, families will don their finest clothes and the children will gather Easter eggs. Easter is a time of joy and promise as the first blades of grass begin to peek through the shroud of winter. In the pastel climate of spring, eternal life is a popular subject. Yet, how many people will really stop to think about how they can obtain eternal life? How many people will actually know the truth about how to receive it? How many will give their heart and lives to God so they may understand who Jesus Christ really was and who He still is? What does His death and resurrection actually mean to mankind?
A remnant of believers will celebrate Resurrection Day, knowing the real meaning of this season, but many more will simply be going through the tradition of a religious service. Religion cannot save anyone. Only a personal relationship with Jesus Christ the Son of God can give us life after death.
In today’s world, most people do not have a problem believing in the fact that the spirit is eternal. Even those who do not consider themselves “religious” often believe in some form of life after the grave. They just aren’t sure what it is, and many do not want to know. Hell is an unfashionable topic. New Age teachings have settled in almost every facet of our society with vague, cozy feelings of the “afterlife.”
We have read many documented accounts of people who have died in their physical bodies and have given testimony that they entered into a spiritual dimension beyond this life. Life did not cease for them. They then returned to their bodies to tell of their experiences. Some tell of seeing a “white light,” others give descriptions of hell; still others see Jesus or angels. What awaits us on the other side? This will be determined by what we did in this life. Just because people report they saw a “white light” does not mean they will go to heaven when they die. Proverbs 14:12: “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” There is only one way any of us will go to heaven and it is through accepting Christ as our savior. This is the message of the cross. Jesus died so that we could live and have eternal life. It is not our works that will save us. We must repent of our sins and ask Jesus to come into our heart and change us. Then we shall live and not die. John 14:6: “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
Spirit, Soul and Body
In Daniel 12:1-4, Daniel talks of the end of the age where it says, “Many that sleep in the dust shall awake to everlasting life.” This “sleep” is referring to the physical body sleeping, not the soul or spirit. Our spirit is the “real us.” We are a spirit and have a soul (mind, will and emotions) that lives in a body. There is a cultic teaching that talks about “soul sleep” which is not scriptural. When people die, they do not enter into a state of eternal sleep, neither do they cease to exist. When we die, our body will go into the ground to decay and return to dust, but our body is not who we really are (Genesis 3:19). Our spirit, when we die, goes either to hell or to be with the Father in heaven. There is no in-between place, heavenly sleep or state of non-existence.
Many young people in our society have become morbidly preoccupied with the subject of death. “Punk” rockers are sending forth messages in their rock music that can cause some of them to receive demon spirits that drive these young people to commit suicide. They think by committing suicide they will escape living, believing that everything will end; but the Word of God clearly teaches that some go to everlasting life (heaven) or others to everlasting shame (hell). The body dies, but men’s spirits live on in one of two states: with God or with the devil. Some evil rock music even encourages suicide as a “ticket to hell.” These musicians don’t even try to deceive the people as to where they will end up. The deception is, they believe the devil will reward them. The truth is that Satan will not reward anyone with anything good for serving him. These deluded people will suffer eternal torment in hell with the devil and his demons, forever separated from God and His goodness.
Yet the troublesome question still remains — why must we die in the first place? The truth is, God never made us to die. Death of the body was not God’s original plan. It is the result of sin. When Adam and Eve committed the first sin (disobedience to God), sin entered into this world; as a result of it, every single one of us will face death at sometime. When we die, we will also face judgment before God. “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). The Bible speaks of death as an enemy. 1 Corinthians 15:26 says, “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.” In this world we are seeing death all around us: death by old age, disease, murder, suicide, accidents, disasters, famine and war. All of these have been brought on mankind because of sin and a fallen race. Death is an evil that produces torment, fear, hatred, suffering, agony, pain, grief and heartache. There is only one way that we can overcome both death and the fear of it; that is through the One who conquered death and the grave. The death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, God’s Son, has now made a way for us to also conquer death. Romans 8:37: “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.”
And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Matthew 10:28
Aside from death in the body, the Bible also speaks of another death — spiritual death (the second death). This is the death Jesus is referring to in the above verse, and it is ultimately the death that He came to deliver us from. This death is eternal separation from God. It extends beyond our mortal bodies. It does not mean ceasing to exist, rather it means that we will exist forever in our sinful state. Though hell is a literal place of torment, the main source of its torment is the eternal separation from God. This is far more ghastly than anything we can imagine, just as heaven is more wonderful than anything we can conceive. God never created hell for mankind. It was created as a fiery prison for Satan and the fallen angels (demons). Men are going there because they have chosen to follow the devil and have rejected Christ. Matthew 25:41: “Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.”
From the time we are born to when we die, we are given the chance to choose our own destiny. No one can choose it for us, least of all God. He created man with a free will that He will not violate. All He can do is set before us life (which is only found in the provision of Jesus’ death on the cross), or death (which is found in rejection of Jesus). To choose the latter will in no uncertain terms lead to the second death.
The emblem of the cross is seen all over the world in the display of church steeples and crucifixes worn around people’s necks. However, many people do not know the real meaning of the symbolism of the cross and what it means to those who look to the event of Christ’s death on the cross and His resurrection for their salvation. The cross is the greatest symbol of love that was ever shown to this world. It speaks of a perfectly innocent man, who was brutally tortured in the most scandalous of deaths, for a world that spit in His face. We are just as guilty of crucifying our Lord as the people who actually did it because we have sinned and it was for sin He was crucified.
Anyone who would call God unloving for “sending” people to hell, has never really understood the cross. We are the ones who chose to sin! Yet, God in His great mercy, made a glorious way out of the inevitable result of our sin for us. He took it upon Himself, and it cost Him more than we can imagine – His Beloved Son. God put all of the sins of the whole world upon Him and punished Him in our place. This is a profound mystery, but it is the central message of the gospel – that God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son that whosoever would believe in Him wouldn’t die in their sins, but could inherit eternal life through faith in Him (John 3:16). 1 Peter 2:24 says Jesus bore our sins in His body, not in His spirit. He is the eternal and sinless Holy Spirit. (Jesus did not die spiritually. The Scripture in 2 Corinthians 5:21 which says, “For he hath made Him to be sin for us who knew no sin…” means He was made to be a “sin offering” for us, not that He literally became sin.)
However, if that was all that took place, the story would have a very bitter ring to it indeed. Preaching just the death of Jesus is only half the message. The gospel (good news) is that Jesus is alive today!
What is the Significance of Jesus’ Resurrection?
Jesus is the only man that ever came back to life from the grave. Every religion in the world outside of Christianity has a grave or tomb where their leader is buried. Only in the Bible is recorded the tomb that was found empty because Christ rose from the dead and is alive today!
Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre. And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus. And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments: And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen: Luke 24:1-7
We often think of the cross as the end, but without the resurrection, we have no Christianity. It is the resurrection that makes the Christian religion different from any other religion. Some portray Jesus still on the cross, but He’s not there any more; He’s alive in His resurrected body! Hallelujah!
For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 1 Corinthians 15:16-23
The Resurrection of Christ Declared Four Things:
- Acts 2:32-36 says Jesus is Lord and Christ because of the resurrection.
- Romans 1:1-4 declared Him to be the Son of God with power.
- Ephesians 1:19-23 says Jesus is the Head of the Church.
- John 11:25 says He is the Resurrection and the Life.
Only one has ever been resurrected thus far, Jesus Christ. Because Jesus overcame the grave, this resurrection is now available to every one of His followers. It is not the same thing as being raised from the dead. This is an eternal resurrection. Some people, such as Lazarus (John 11), were raised from the dead but not resurrected (as they eventually died again). There have been many documented cases of people dying and coming back to life. Though this is glorious, the resurrection to eternal life with Christ is different; it is the final state of those who have trusted in Christ. Revelation 1:18 says, “I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.”
Jesus spoke these words also in John 5:24, “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.” Death of the body is not anything that the Christian should ever fear. If we are in Christ when our body dies, we will face an existence that will make our time on earth seem pale and shadowy. Some Christians will even escape death if they are alive at the second coming of Jesus to the earth. In that day, those that are alive will receive their glorified bodies right after the dead in Christ are raised and receive theirs. That day is approaching quickly and that is why the Lord is warning all of us to be ready. The hope of the church is the resurrection.
Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed…and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, ‘Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?…’ But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:51-57
What are some of the things that those who have been redeemed can expect to find in our next life?
Philippians 3:20-21 says Jesus will change our “vile” bodies. What will our glorified bodies look like when we get to heaven? We have some clues by noting the characteristics that Jesus’ body had when He rose from the grave. Our glorified bodies will appear different. We will therefore recognize each other by the spirit. What we really look like on the inside will be apparent to all. Jesus’ body could go through walls (John 20:26). It felt like ours; Thomas touched it (Luke 24:39-40). On the road to Emmaus, the disciples didn’t recognize His new body and He vanished in front of them (Luke 24:13-32). Jesus even ate with His disciples. In our glorified bodies, we don’t have to eat for sustenance, but we will be able to eat for pleasure (Luke 24:39-43, Matthew 26:29). It will have no pain, no sickness, no aging, no restrictions (with the power of translation), and be able to appear in different forms.
All of this is just the tip of the iceberg, of what God has prepared for those He loves. Surely there is nothing in this life that can hold a candle to the surpassing greatness of living in Christ – living in the very One who is the source of all life! How foolish we are to let the cares of this life, the god of unbelief, and the temporary pleasures of sin keep us from knowing Him.
Our Victory in the Cross
When we celebrate Resurrection Day (Easter), we acknowledge that we are sinners, saved by grace. The greatest truth of the cross is that when we accept Christ as our savior, a wonderful exchange takes place. Jesus died so we could live. We can now live in victory in this earth. As we identify with His death, we also identify with His life. Jesus became poor so we could become rich in His blessings. 2 Corinthians 8:9 says,“For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.” He took our sickness and infirmities so we could receive health. He took our curses so we might receive His blessings. He gave us peace for anxiety; love for hate; joy for sorrow; faith for fear; goodness for evil; temperance for lust and the list could go on. He took our hell and gave us heaven. We didn’t deserve it but He did it for us because of His love for each of us!!
The Easter holiday is the most triumphant celebration of grace and life that we will ever experience on this earth! It is a celebration of God’s goodness, love, and His awesome power. It holds the promise of not only eternal life to all who are willing to humbly receive it from Him; but also for a victorious life in this earth through the power of His Holy Spirit. We can spend eternity in our heavenly home with Jesus and all the saints of all the ages if we receive this wonderful gift of love!
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. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. Romans 10:9-13
In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death. Proverbs 12:28
by R.S. “Bud” Miller
Note: This teaching is continued from last month’s Overcoming Life Digest – Volume 6
ORIGIN OF COVENANTS
Ancient Patterns of Blood Covenants
The concept of covenant is often difficult for modern and western peoples to understand. Many of us live in societies where covenants are made and broken on a daily basis, and no one seems to be shocked or alarmed. It is becoming increasingly easier to end relationships, leave jobs, break business deals, and “walk out” of any situation that becomes uncomfortable to us. Because of this warped view of commitment, we often have a warped view of what it means to enter into a covenant with God. Explaining where the tradition of covenant came from, will help us understand the nature of God’s covenant with us.
There are various forms of cutting a covenant, or contract, which have been practiced since ancient times. In some parts of the world, these kinds of contracts were honored in Middle East countries until after World War II — and may still be in some remote areas.
They came into being because there were no law courts, no federal or local depositories for legal documents, and no lawyers to act as mediators in those days. In fact, until a few hundred years before Jesus, apparently there was no paper on which to write. Written languages have been around much longer than the secular world wants to believe; however, in ancient times, the writing was on “tablets” of stone, tablets of clay, or on animal skins.
Blood covenants date as far back as we have records. Men honored them as much legally as we do today with our “deeds” and legal papers filed in court houses. In fact, the honor of keeping one’s word was more binding in ancient Bible times than it is now. It did not matter if anyone but you knew that you had made a promise or a contract. You kept it to your own hurt — if you were an honorable man and not a thief. One who did not keep his word would soon find himself shunned. As Christians, we should keep our covenants and words to others as the Bible admonishes us to do, even when it is not convenient and it hurts. Psalm 15:4b: “….He that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not.”
These contracts between men and other men, followed by God in His blood covenants with man, essentially contained the following elements:
- A statement of the terms and promises of the agreement
- An oath by each party to observe these terms
- A curse by each upon himself should he break the agreement
- The sealing of the covenant by some external act — such as a blood sacrifice, the sprinkling of blood upon the two parties involved, or a sacrificial meal (which involved the shedding of blood in its preparation)
- The exchange of robes or cloaks, representing the authority of each party
- The exchange of weapons and weapons’ belts
- The exchange of names, or the addition of the other’s name to each
- The mingling of personal blood through cuts on each party
Blood covenanting also was practiced between two families or two tribes. A family or tribe weak in a certain area and strong in another would enter into a blood covenant with another family or tribe that had strength in the first family’s areas of weakness. The family proposing the contract would be sure their strengths were in the area of the second family’s weaknesses, so it would be a “fair trade.”
These covenants were discussed at great length until the terms were agreed upon. Then each party chose a representative and met at a place decided upon by both parties. At this site, the members of both families or tribes would gather to witness the “sealing” of the covenant.
An animal, as close to perfect as possible, was selected, and the “covenant” cut was made down the spine of that animal. The two halves were laid opposite each other creating a walkway of blood between the two.
In full view of all witnesses, each representative took off his coat (cloak, or outer robe) and exchanged it with the other. With this exchange, each was saying, “I am giving you all that I am in my authority.” Then they exchanged weapons and belts, saying thereby, “I am giving you my strength. Your enemies are now mine. I will stand with you, even if it means my death.”
At this point in the ceremony, each representative walked through the blood twice and back, stopping together in the middle and saying out loud: “As this animal has died, I will stand with you even in the midst of death.” All of the terms previously agreed upon were spoken out loud and solemnly promised to be kept.
After this, a cut was sometimes made in the wrist of each party or representative. Then the two wrists were joined together with a cord so that their blood would be mingled together. The two held up their arms so that the blood would run down them to be seen. They would swear by God to keep this covenant generation after generation, even to the eighth generation. And each party then took the name of the other. Today, there are many “dual” names around which might date back to this kind of compact.
Names until fairly recent times were not just “labels” but made a statement. Either you were named the son of someone (Robert-son, Ander-son) or you were named according to your occupation. Possibly you might be named after a place, an outstanding characteristic of your personality, or one that your parents hoped would be your characteristic. In other words, names used to hold more of people’s identities than our names do now.
After the exchange of names, the two parties in covenant, or the two representatives, would feed one another bread and wine, saying, in essence: “We (or those we represent) are covenant brothers. (The bread represented to them that they would let their bodies die before they would betray each other or let one another starve. The drinking of the wine was symbolic of giving their “life blood” for each other, pledging that they were forever dedicated to each other.)”
This type of covenant was more lasting than being born into the same family. It was stronger than natural blood ties. The ancient peoples of the world took these covenants very seriously, as you can see. Then, if God used blood covenants to make His reconciliation with mankind (Hebrews 2:17), it seems clear that God takes His covenants even more seriously than the ancients did theirs. Earthly blood covenants usually were to the eighth generation; God’s covenants are eternal.
(To be continued next month)
(Excerpt from the book entitled COVENANT: God’s Guarantee for Victorious Living)
Psalm 105:1: “O Give thanks unto the Lord; call on his name: make known his deeds among the people.”
We thought our readers might be blessed by some of the testimonies, requests, and input that we receive on a daily basis. They have blessed us so we know they will bless you too. Please read them and be encouraged!
“I would like to thank everyone at Christ Unlimited for the wonderful work that you are doing and will hope that the good Lord will give you the courage and strength to continue with his ministry. I was fortunate enough to access the Internet for a week or so and quickly discovered your website which was of interest to me, however, I do have access to an e-mail and was wondering whether you could send me more of your materials which you distribute freely…”
From SOUTH AFRICA:
“What a wonderful site to stumble upon…why do you not advertise more extensively? I would welcome any contact with you… do you have a subscription magazine of sorts? Isn’t it great that Christianity is becoming a global village in contact internationally with what Gods wider movement!! So exciting! God bless you all.”
“I am an Indian student in the department of computer science in Stuttgart University, Germany doing research in Mobile robotic vision. In Stuttgart, there is a Sri Lankan Christian Tamils group known to me. They assemble every week for prayer, worship and bible studies. But the major problem, they encounter is the lack of number of Bibles as most of them are refugees living with the care of German aid. They don’t want a single dollar from you. All that they need is Bible. Please help them.”
“I WAS VERY HAPPY TO FIND A SITE LIKE THIS, BECAUSE I LOVE JESUS SO MUCH , PLEASE I WILL BE HAPPY IF YOU EMAIL ME . THANK YOU VERY MUCH.”
From a High School Student in the UNITED STATES:
“I have read the prayer and meant it. I believe in Jesus and love him. I am a Baptist and have been Baptized. Please send me more information on how to be a Christian.”
“I TRULY APPRECIATE YOUR WHOLE SERVICE AND WOULD LIKE YOU TO STAY IN-TUNED WITH ME TILL I AM DONE WITH ALL SORT OF SINS IN MY LIFE. I AM DESPERATE FOR HELP. PLEASE HELP ME NOW BEFORE JESUS COMES! I AM SHARING TEARS AS I WRITE THIS.”
“I have been a Christian for one day now! Yesterday My net friend, grandma Mellie helped me to join. I am very happy because I can talk to God now, I do want to be a good Christian and follow God. But I haven’t got a Bible, could you send me one?”
From the UNITED STATES:
“I am so glad to have found your website. I am raising two Christian boys and they are Internet active. My biggest concern is the lack of “wholesome” sites for them to visit. Yours will assist them in their quest for knowledge of the Lord and in discovering who they are and their mission in life through the Bible.”
From a US Serviceman, OVERSEAS:
“Your web site has so much meat it’s going to take me some days to get though it all. I spent a lot of time coping your web site and I for one am looking forward to what the Lord will be doing in my life because of your ministries. God Bless you and Keep you in his care.”
From EASTERN EUROPE:
“I would like to share with you my deepest surprise, regarding the quality and contents of the web site.I find the opportunity to study the Bible through your course very attractive. That is the reason why, I would kindly ask you to inform me about the possibilities for me to join the course. I would very much like to receive any information regarding the course.”
Howdi, “My name is Tim, I am 12 years old now, I live in Ontario Canada. I don’t have any perticuler reson to be tipeing this, I just enjoyed looking at your page. Well, I have got to go now I’m tiping this at around 1:00 in the morning, so I am pretty tired rigt now. I would like it if you write me back.”
“Congratulations it is very good! I´d to know if you have Portuguese bible answers in this site please. It would be a great help to us.”
From a LUTHERAN CHURCH secretary:
“Your site is Awesome. I Hope that More people, Both Christian & Non find their way to Christ through your site.”
“This is an unbelievable site and the wealth of information that’s on there is priceless. You have no idea how much this site means to me and the tuition I gain from using it. May God bless you a double portion for all the time effort and money have invested and continue to invest.”
From a COLLEGE STUDENT:
“Thank you so much for getting back to me. I appreciate it that you took the time to answer my questions. I am so glad that there are people in the world like you. Bringing the gospel to others in every way they can. May the Lord bless you and continue to keep His hand in your ministry. If you can, try to keep me updated at to your progress. Do you have some sort of e-mail newsletter? If so please tell me about how I can get it. Again thanks for the information.”
From SOUTH AFRICA:
“I have prayed this prayer (salvation) in all sincerity. I need all the help I can get to persevere in my efforts to walk with God and to turn away from evil. God bless you in your work .”
From a young MINISTER:
“I was truly inspired and blessed by coming across your ministry on the net. There are so many carnal things available it’s extremely good to see that Christ is also being magnified through this mean. I felt the anointing as I read through your web page and so I submit a request. I know better than to have just anyone pray for me. I believe by the Spirit of God that you are truly anointed and doing what you should be at this hour.”
From NEW JERSEY:
“It is so refreshing to go into your website after a long and often times depressing day and read about Christ’s love. Your bible studies often feed me when I cannot make it to class. As a social worker, I find that my faith in the Lord helps me be the best I can be for all my clients and with your words and thoughts it gives me the extra strength I need to get through. Thank you for your ministry…”
“I have looked at dozens of Christian sites and none until now said anything of value. Yours is the first. The cults and Satanists are in the electronic highways and byways. We need to do the same. You are on the right track. Now take it further. God Bless your efforts.”
From BROOKLYN, NY:
“I THANK GOD FOR THIS WEB SITE! KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK! THIS IS A WELL ROUNDED, BIBLICALLY SOUND MINISTRY AND I LOVE YOUR STRAIGHT FORWARD MESSAGE! NO COMPROMISE! I WAS CONVICTED WHEN I READ YOUR MESSAGE ON LYING! I HAD TO REPENT! THANK YOU JESUS FOR FORGIVENESS WELL I PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE THIS MINISTRY FOR HIS GLORY AND KEEP YOU IN THE LOVE OF CHRIST!”
“My name is Justin and I am addicted to a drug called Nubain (Nalbuphine HCl). I need your prayers to release me from my addiction, please, and I am praying for you guys also. Today because of your web site, I invited God and Jesus into me heart! Thank You!”
“I really enjoyed this site. It has a ton of excellent resources and I plan on visiting many times more. My good friend and former pastor told me of this grand site.”
“I work for the School of Environmental Studies at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland. I was informed of your website via a friend. It is superb!”
“I think that this is a very beneficial site to the people of the world. I had been looking for a way to get saved and thanks to this site I found it. Thanks!!!!!”
From NORTH CAROLINA:
“I enjoyed very much,finding that I could feast on manna on the internet. The Holy Spirit is obviously guiding your ministry. I will keep you both in my prayers. These are topics that truly need to be brought to light to the world. May our Savior richly bless you!”
“I found it very helpful. It is very good to provide material on required topics specially to laymen.”
“thank God I found you! praise the lord.”
“Well, I’m very happy to know that I have friends and brothers all around the world, we (my family and I) are Christian,we go to a church and its name is Shalom and all of us we pray for you every day, well as you can see I really don’t know a lot of English but I’m trying } to tell you that we love you very much as the family that we are. ”
“Praise the Lord for sites such as this one to be a light in this dark world! I thank my Heavenly Father for allowing me to find this site. I have gained insight in different areas, and have even sent some of your bible studies/bible answers to a friend of mine in the Marines who was struggling with his faith! Keep up the great work!”
“It is all that I could have asked for and I believe God definitely had a plan for me when he blessed me through the Netscape. I would definitely like to attend the Bible Study. Please sign me in and I would be obliged if you keep me in your mailing-list.”
We appreciate all the encouraging words from around the world. May God receive ALL the glory! All of this is just a sample of what God is doing through the site He gave us stewardship over. Thank you again for your prayers and support. They are literally helping to change the world!
By Betty Miller
Note: This teaching is continued from last month’s Overcoming Life Digest – Volume 7
AVOID WORLDLY ENTANGLEMENTS
After Paul wrote in the Bible, “endure hardness,” he added, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier” (2 Timothy 2:4). If we’re going to walk in victory, we cannot be caught up in the things of this world. There are so many things that could take us away from our true mission of serving the Lord Jesus Christ. Some of these things are not sinful in themselves, but if they detract from that which spiritually strengthens us, then we could lose the battle.
Take a sport for example. Bowling is not sinful, but what if our involvement is such that we’re missing out on a needed prayer or Bible study time. Missing that time of spiritual strengthening could result in our losing a spiritual battle. There are times for our involvement in non-spiritual activities. God may have us go bowling in order to witness to someone. Wherever we go, we’re to be a light. The Lord sends us out as lights to a world that would otherwise not be reached.
Avoiding entanglement with the world doesn’t mean we only read the Word and stay in prayer. We can certainly do other things, but let’s make sure it’s not the enemy diverting us from spiritual priorities. He’s out to spiritually drain us. If we’re in a war, we cannot be wrapped up in non-priority activities. We need to stay in an attitude of spiritual warfare, led of the Lord in all areas.
God may call us to sacrifice hobbies for the sake of His kingdom. We must be sure what we’re doing fits God’s plan for our time. Then too, after a season of warfare God may provide a hobby for a season of rest. Our God is not a hard taskmaster. Some ministries have been overcome because they never rested. They kept firing cannons, constantly on the go, always in an attitude of warfare, warfare, and more warfare. They would have been more effective if they had also included the strengthening season of rest. Even soldiers in the world are given “leave” or “R & R” for a sabbatical.
Some do all the battling and refuse to rest; others do all the resting and refuse to battle. Both battling and resting are needed to walk in balance with God. As we are led by the Spirit, we’ll know what season it is. If it is a season of battle, we certainly cannot entangle ourselves with worldly affairs. We have to avoid distractions and focus on the things of God.
(Excerpt from the book entitled Personal Spiritual Warfare)
Note: This teaching is continued from last month’s Overcoming Life Digest – Volume 7
THE SNARE OF PRIDE AND BEAUTY
Pride is one of Satan’s main attributes. This pride is directed towards his own beauty and accomplishments; Ezekiel 28:17 points this out: “Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.” Many today are afflicted with this same pride. Those in the world are seeking beauty today as never before. Beauty aids, make-up, glamorous clothes, beautiful homes and plush automobiles are only a few of the things the world is seeking today. These things in themselves are not evil, but the lust for them is. (1 John 2:16, “For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.”) Satan’s unusual beauty was one of the causes of his destruction. It contributed to the excessive development of his pride.
Spiritual beauty is also a deadly trap. God blesses many with His gifts and graces, but then those same gifts become a source of pride when the people cease to be able to handle them with humility. They begin seeing themselves as better than others and soon take credit for their holiness and spirituality instead of glorifying God. This ultimately leads to their fall. (Proverbs 16:18, “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.”)
Many refuse to give their gifts back to God because they love to be seen exhibiting them and using them to manipulate others. If they persist in refusing to surrender them, the Holy Spirit will eventually depart, and Satan will gladly replace God’s gifts with his false gifts. The change can be so subtle that the person does not even recognize Satan’s take over. In fact, many think they have received greater gifts. The big difference from this point on, however, is that their gifts no longer stress fellowship with the Lord, nor cause souls to repent, nor stimulate joy and peace in the Lord. The false gifts that have been substituted will only excite the flesh.
Examples of this would be prophecies that promote pride in others, words of knowledge that deal with only the things of this world (houses, cars, lands, business deals, etc.), or words that promote giving to their ministries. Even casting out devils and doing wonderful works can be done by those whose hearts are not right with God. Matthew 7:22-23 says, “…Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”
(Excerpt from the book entitled Exposing Satan’s Devices)
MARK OF GOD OR MARK OF THE BEAST
Note: This teaching is continued from last month’s Overcoming Life Digest – Volume 7
Much has been said on this subject of the mark of the beast, but little said about the mark of God. Will there be a literal mark tattooed on people’s foreheads and/or their hands in these end times to make it possible to buy and sell in a one-world monetary system that is being set up by an antichrist?
We can certainly see the possibilities of this becoming a literal reality in our day with the technology of laser beam tattoos and our president speaking of a “new world order.” Even now, pets can be tracked by tiny computer chips about the size of a grain of rice which have an identification number programmed into it that can be injected under the skin with a hypodermic needle. A special scanner generates a radio signal that reads the number through the skin of the animal when it is found.
This book is not disputing the possibilities of a literal tattoo, but rather exposing the spiritual implications behind that plan of Satan. How will this come about? Will it be one of the above new technologies or something yet to come? We don’t believe men are going to be tattooed or branded with a literal set of three sixes on their foreheads or hands, any more than we believe the letters J-E-S-U-S will be on the foreheads of God’s servants as spoken of in Revelation 22: 3-4: “And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads.”
How will the beast mark those who follow him, and what is the mark of God set upon those who follow Christ? Let us begin with the mark of the beast, then look at how we are to receive God’s mark which protects us from destruction in these end times.
Throughout the Scriptures, the word beast refers to a system, and not to a man. The beast is a system that rules the world; it’s an antichrist system. Daniel 7 speaks of beasts and identifies them as earthly kingdoms. So the beast in Revelation is a beastly system that’s ruling the world (it’s a dictator beast). This beast is not just one human being, rather it is a system that has infiltrated every area whether it be politics, medicine, art or science; the beastly system is everywhere. This system is typically overseen by a powerful government with those in power making decisions that perpetrate the worldly system throughout mankind. When Revelation 13:1 speaks of the beast rising up out of the sea, what is meant by the sea? The Scriptures speak of the sea as “masses of humanity.” This beastly system is rising up out of humanity, out of all the people on the earth. When John, the author of Revelation, stood upon the sand of the sea, he was standing upon that which could not be numbered, among all the people of the earth.
WAR ON THE SAINTS
“And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God” (Revelation 13:6a). Who’s speaking in blasphemy against God? It is those who are influenced by the beastly system. It’s not just one person opening his mouth. There are people blaspheming God all over this world from different segments of society and spheres of influence. Already they are blaspheming and doing blasphemous things against the church. “In blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven” (Revelation 13:6b). Through those who belong to the beastly system, the devil is cursing God; he is also cursing us since we’re the tabernacle spiritually, and he is cursing those who dwell in heaven.
“And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations” (Revelation 13:7). During the Dark Ages, the saints as a whole were not making an impact in the world. The light of Christ; Christianity, burned very low during that historical period. The devil didn’t overcome every saint, but the corporate body of Christ; the church as a whole, was overcome in its public witness. But the spirit of Christ in His people can never be totally overcome; there’s always a remnant that carries His light.
Satan overcoming the saints is also futuristic as I believe at some point the church’s public witness will be stopped in these end times. Matthew 24: 9 says, “Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.” In this verse it says all nations shall hate us; that includes our so-called Christian nation, the United States. Look at the antichrist things we are doing in our nation, such as divorce, drugs, abortion, pornography, greed, materialism, etc. Already we see a segment in our society rising up against Christians for taking a stand against abortion, homosexuality, etc. The hatred against Christians has grown in the past decade in our nation in all spheres of our society.
We should not be against our nation, but love and pray for her. God instructs us as Christians to submit to the government authorities over us as long as they are not requiring us to go against the Word of God. We are to pray for these earthly organizations so we might live quiet and peaceable lives in godliness and honesty. “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty” (1 Timothy 2: 1-2). All nations will come against the public witness of Christians to kill the witness of the church. However, nothing can kill or destroy the church; she may be attacked by political power, apostate religion, temptation from the world, and disruption within from false prophets and false brethren — in spite of all this, the church shall be victorious!
(To be continued next month)
(Excerpt from the book entitled The Mark of God or The Mark of the Beast)
As some may not be familiar with prophecy in the church. We want to share this short explanation of Biblical prophecy before we share an actual prophecy from God.
First, what is Godly prophecy? It can be summed up as words that are spoken on behalf of God. A prophet or prophetess is one who is a spokesman for God. It is a divine utterance that comes from the Holy Spirit. (Note: Just as there are prophetic words from God, there are also false prophecies that the Lord warned us about in the Bible. In Matthew 7:15-16a, Jesus said, “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruit….” We must prove the source of prophecy before accepting it as coming from the Lord.)
God is raising up many prophetic voices in the earth today. His gifts of prophecy are basically of two types. One is the “simple gift of prophecy” which every believer can express under the unction or direction of the Holy Spirit after they have been filled with the Holy Ghost.
The other is the “office gift” of the spirit which is given to a prophet or prophetess who is called to the “five-fold” ministry office as outlined in 1 Corinthians 12:28 which says “And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.” Also Ephesians 4:11-12 which says “And he gave some, apostles; and some prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers. For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.”
The basic difference between these two types is, the simple gift of prophecy is given to all spirit filled believers as spoken of in 1 Corinthians 14:31: “For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted.”
It is for the purpose of edification, exhortation and comfort as spoken of in 1 Corinthians 14:3: “But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.”
The “office gift” of a prophet or prophetess is given to speak to the body of Christ at large. The ministers who are called to the office of a prophet or prophetess will deliver messages also which include edification, exhortation and comfort but their messages can also be directive in nature and futuristic in content as well (Ephesians 4:11-15).
Presently, God is leading His people with prophetic preaching and teaching. A prophetic movement is taking place in the world.
PROPHECY FOR THE 1990’S AND BEYOND
The following prophetic words were given to Betty Miller by the Holy Spirit on December 23, 1989 which was shared with the local church. It was also printed in tract form and has been distributed for a number of years. We want our newsletter to be a ministry to God’s people so we are including this word to help prepare for the remaining days ahead. This message will be printed here in a series form to be continued in future Digests.
THE WIND OF GOD
STRAW NESTS OF PARITY*
AND STRONGHOLDS OF TRADITION TO BE BLOWN AWAY
*Webster’s Definition of “Parity”: (1) Condition of being equal or equivalent, (2) Like state or degree, (3) Equality, close correspondence
The Spirit of the Lord says, My wind is beginning to blow upon the body of Christ. These are the winds of judgement that will blow the “straw nests of men’s parity” away. As the wind of my Spirit increases even the strongholds of men’s tradition and doctrine will collapse. I will build a new house with walls of truth and I will place my chosen leadership to be servants as stewards over my household. The ideas of equality that men have embraced are not the same as Mine.
Position or offices in God’s kingdom are given for the purpose of order and service. Those who have assumed positions that I have not called them to occupy will be removed. Also those that have been appointed by men will also be dealt with and removed or relocated. My faithful servants who have continued to follow me will remain.
I am setting up my kingdom with my wisdom and order. I look on men’s hearts which are hidden from the world and I set one man up and take another down even as Saul was removed and David enthroned in the Old Testament.
The “straw nests of parity” are man-made. The equality man seeks is sought by demanding their own rights; however, those who seek their own ways will be as straw nests in the wind. The wind of my Holy Spirit will blow away all of men’s self-centeredness and what they considered to be equality. What is equality? Am I not the God of true equality?
Ezekiel 18:25-31: “Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal? When a righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and dieth in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die. Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die. Yet saith the house of Israel, The way of the Lord is not equal. O house of Israel, are not my ways equal? are not your ways unequal? Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel?”
In my scheme of authority and order, I place men whom I have called and trained to positions of leadership for the good of all my people. I am going to do a new thing as I authorize my five-fold ministry servants to begin leading in a new direction. I will simultaneously direct My body to follow their guidance and leadership. Rebellion will not remain in my house. I’m sending the fire of the Holy Spirit to first uncover and expose the carnal and rebellious ones, then I’m going to give my true servants a new anointing of love and wisdom to deal with this problem in my people. I am no respecter of persons. All who have rebellion will be dealt with. Pray that you might be delivered from this evil as well as the pride that promotes it.
I am a respecter of one thing – that is my Word. Although I love everyone equally and my offer of salvation is to “whosoever will may come,” my favor rests on those who do my will. If a man keeps My words, he will find favor with me, if he rejects or breaks my Word he will suffer for his own sin unless he comes to Me for forgiveness and cleansing.
Some are suffering because they are ignorant of My word, because My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6). Others are rejecting My Word because they desire their own way over my way. What a man sows he shall reap (Galatians 6:7).
There is an evil in the church that has come from the influence of the world; that evil is man’s cry for his own rights. Unless men yield to the rights that I have established for them, they are destroyed seeking their own way. Proverbs 16:25 says,“There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” You are seeing much death and destruction because men are demanding their own way.
The strongholds of tradition must also be broken over my people if my work is to progress. Matthew 15:6-9,”….Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoreth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.”
Your doctrines and traditions must be submitted unto Me for cleansing. All traditions are not wrong, but some man-made ones are. My church must be willing to change. They must yield to the changes I desire of them. They are entrenched in the depths of preconceived ideas of what they believe to be My ways. The methodology and things I did and allowed yesterday will not suffice for the day you now live in. Many of My people have become very rebellious in this day and their rebellion is producing a curse upon them.
When the Israelites spoke in rebellion against Moses, it caused the curse of fiery serpents to bite the people. I instructed Moses to make a fiery serpent of brass and set it on a pole. I commanded everyone who had been bitten to look upon it so they would live. (Numbers 21:7-9) Later, however; this very method I used for deliverence became an idol to the people. Before long, they began to look to it, instead of Me, as their source of deliverance. They burned incense to it and called it Nehustan. (2 Kings 18:4)
Today My people are doing the same thing with the methods I used in the past to bring deliverance to them. I now am instructing my leadership to tear down “Nehustan” as it has replaced Me as the source of blessing. I am calling my people to a new and living way.
I now call my people to search the “straw nests of parity” (men’s ideas of equality). They will be scattered,along with the strongholds of men’s traditions. My Holy Spirit is searching out and uncovering the hindrances to My work. The Wind of God is blowing away that which is not built on My Word (Hebrews 12:26-29).
–Prophetic Word given to Betty Miller in March of 1993
(Little compromises that cause big problems)
Song of Solomon 2:15 says, “Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes.” Foxes sometime in search of food would enter into the grape orchards and devour the grapes and spoil the crop. However, the little foxes were too small to reach the grape bunches so they would chew on the vines and it would kill the whole vine. Instead of the farmer just losing his crop, he would lose his vine which was more disastrous. Spiritually some things we do or allow that we might think is little or insignificant can also be disastrous for us.
He that observeth the wind shall not sow; and he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap. Ecclesiastes 11:4
Procrastination means we put off until tomorrow what we should do today. In fact, the dictionary definition is “to put off doing something (unpleasant or burdensome) until a future time; especially to postpone such actions habitually.” Being human, we all face the temptation to procrastinate. This disposition may not seem so bad at first glance but it is a “little fox” that will spoil our vines.
In the Christian life, this habit in regard to spiritual things will rob of us our devotion to Christ. The devil knows that if we pray and read our Bibles and meet for fellowship with other Christians, we will become strong Christians that can defeat him. This is the reason he tries to stop us from doing these things. One of his most successful devices is to delay people from praying, reading the Word of God and going to church. He doesn’t tempt them with the suggestion that they shouldn’t do these things; he just tries to get them to “put off” doing them until a later time. This strategy becomes very successful as he knows that “tomorrow never comes” for most people.
He uses the same strategy to get people to wait about making a decision to give their lives to the Lord. The devil knows if he can just get them to wait until a later time, perhaps they will never make the decision and end up in hell. There is an old adage that says, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.” People mean to get things right with the Lord, but the enemy will furnish them with a thousand reasons why they can wait until later. Time is running out for all people as the return of the Lord is very near. Bible prophecies indicate that the Lord Jesus Christ will be returning to this earth to judge all mankind in the near future. Most Bible students predict this event sometime around the year 2000. No man knows the exact day or hour but we can know the season of the Lord’s return by observing the things that He said would come to pass at that time (Read Matthew 24 in the Bible).
Now is the time that we must take action and do the things that we know the Lord wants us to do. James 1:22 says, “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” We must be obedient to the Word of God if we do not want to be deceived in this hour. Many Christians have heard the Word of God over and over. Now is the time to apply it and do it. That is the only way we will be able to overcome the things that the devil tries to destroy us with. We must conquer the tendency to procrastinate as it is an evil “little fox” that will defeat us. We can do this by the power of the Holy Spirit. If we will pray and ask the Lord to help us, He will not fail us. He will give us the desire and the resolve to live the overcoming life in Him. He will send help and make a way for us to do all that He requires of us. He is faithful and we can be faithful too, through Him!
Lessons From The Titanic
THREE KINDS OF LEADERSHIP by Rick Joyner
(The following article is an exerpt taken from Rick Joyner’s book, The Harvest)
The tragedy of the Titanic brought to light a striking revelation of three kinds of leadership—all three of which can be seen in the world and the church today.
The first type can be seen in Captain Smith and the crew of the Titanic. They were the best from the British merchant fleet. They believed that there was not a more intelligent, experienced or knowledgeable sea captain in the Empire than Smith. Combine that with his record of never having had a single accident at sea and we have what appeared to be an unsinkable crew with an unsinkable ship. Actually, these characteristics are probably a significant contributing factor to the doom of this ship. These all fed the pride which feeds carelessness, which sooner or later usually leads to tragedy.
The Titanic’s crew had never held a proper lifeboat drill. They did not have a plan for the orderly movement of passengers to the boats, and the crew did not even know how to lower them. Everything had to be planned and learned while the ship was sinking under their feet. This obviously contributed to a much greater loss of life than was necessary. Many boats were lowered only partially full, one with only twelve people, while hundreds of passengers were held below decks by the crew. The entire ship had been caught off guard by the events of that fateful night and they paid dearly for it. Will we be caught in the same position? If we are we will pay just as dearly. But we don’t have to be surprised. The Lord exhorted us to know the signs of the times and not to sleep on our watch. Prophets throughout the land are now calling for preparation; the Lord is giving us signs in the heavens and on the earth. He is sounding His trumpet to wake us up and we must hear it.
Almost every great man of God in Scripture and history was only successful after passing through the fires of failure and defeat. Many of the elders and fathers of the faith would not trust a man until he had his “limp” (a major failure or defeat). As Alexander Solzhenitsyn declared, “Does not even biology itself teach us that perpetual well being is not good for any living thing?” Perpetual well being can open doors to a most dangerous enemy— complacency. What else can explain how the Titanic crew could receive six warnings that there were deadly icebergs directly in their path and yet they did not even slow down!
The Danger of Overconfidence
The Bible is most candid about the failures and mistakes of even its greatest heroes. This is a message in itself. We must take heed when we think we stand, lest we fall. Even the greatest men and women of faith had defeats and failures. Even the apostle Paul could be “foiled by Satan.” When we hear the testimonies of individuals and churches which claim to have never been deceived or made great mistakes, if this is declared as a boast they will be doomed to a great fall. Those who have not been wounded probably have not yet been in the fight. Such are in danger of not only getting wounded, but getting killed.
There were two other ships which played a significant role in the drama of the Titanic disaster: the Californian and the Carpathia. The captains of these ships remarkably parallel the two other prevailing types of leadership found today.
The Danger of Being Overly Cautious
The Californian had a captain who had obviously learned something from his years of successes and failures. He was reserved and cautious, but overly cautious. The realities of life may cause us to react this way if we allow the fear of more failure to sow in us a perpetual hesitancy. Becoming overly cautious can be just as deadly as being overly confident as it proved to be in this case. When Captain Lord of the Californian heard about the ice in his path he slowed down. When he saw the ice he ordered the ship stopped and he waited for daylight. His wireless (radio) operator began warning the other ships in the area of the danger. At 7:30 p.m. her warning was received and logged by the Titanic.
The usually stormy North Atlantic was amazingly calm that night. More than one officer remarked that they had never seen the sea so tranquil. First officer Lightoller of the Titanic made this observation at the inquiry when he declared that “everything was against us.” This seems to have been a resounding confirmation of the Biblical exhortation that when men cry “Peace and safety, sudden destruction will come.”
This tranquility must have overcome the crew of the Californian as well. Her bridge watch saw the Titanic approaching just a few miles away and then saw her stop dead in the water. At first they thought she was taking the same precautions for the ice which they had taken. Then she started firing rockets into the air every few minutes, which is always a distress signal at sea. The crew of the California rationalized this, remarking that it must be a signal meant for another company ship which they could not see! They did not even bother to wake the wireless operator to see if he could contact the ship. Then they watched her disappear beneath the sea while telling each other as the lights dimmed that she was sailing away! Had they responded to the first distress signal the Californian may well have been able to save all of the lives that were lost.
The incredible attitude of the Californian crew is matched by much of the church today. When the final inquiry comes and the final story is told we are going to marvel at how many were in a position to save life but instead slept right through the night like Captain Lord of the Californian when he could have done so much. Rationalization is a popular shield for cowards. Were they so afraid of the ice that they decided to humor each other with unbelievable reasons for not responding to the obvious emergency? Are we going to have to ask ourselves a similar question? As our world sinks into the deep are we going to sleep when we could be saving many, or are we going to rise up and take action?
Revelation 21:8 says, “the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” Here cowards are lumped together with the murderers because their actions often lead to the death of others. When we can help and we don’t we will be held accountable before the Lord. The Lord Jesus came to give His life for others and He has called us to follow Him with this same devotion. We may hide and save our lives during times of trouble, but we may very well by this action be putting ourselves in the most terrible jeopardy for all eternity. If we cower and seek to save our lives we will ultimately lose them just like the Lord warned. It is only by losing our own lives that we will find them. Cowards have no place in the kingdom of God. “Those who know their God will display strength and take action” (Daniel 11:32). If we do not display strength and take action it is obviously because we do not know Him.
The Resolve of True Leadership
The third ship in the fateful drama of that night was the Carpathia, captained by Arthur H. Rostron. He was known for the ability to make quick decisions and to energize those who served under him. He is a wonderful example of the leadership the Lord is preparing for this day. Rostron was a pious man devoted to prayer. At 12:35 a.m. the Carpathia’s wireless operator burst into his quarters to report that the Titanic had struck an iceberg. Rostron reacted in character; he immediately ordered the Carpathia turned around and full speed ahead, later asking the operator if he was sure about the report—a striking contrast to the reaction on the Californian.
Rostron then gave an masterful display of a truly prepared mind; he thought of everything and took care of every detail. He ordered the English doctor to the first class dining room, the Italian doctor to second class, the Hungarian to third class, along with every possible piece of equipment or supplies needed for the sick and wounded. He ordered different officers to different gangways instructing them to get the names of survivors to send by wireless. They prepared block and lines with chair slings for the wounded. Bowlines were secured along the ship’s sides along with boat ropes and heaving lines for lifting people in chairs. All gangway doors were opened. He then directed specific officers to take charge of his present passengers and to see to their needs. All hands were to prepare coffee, soup and provisions. He then designated all officers cabin’s, smoke rooms, library, etc., as accommodations for the survivors. Stewards were sent to reassure and explain to their own passengers the reason for the activity to help keep them calm.
Then Rostron turned to face the biggest problem of all—the ice. He was heading at full speed into the same field that had sunk the Titanic. To this courageous man reducing speed was out of the question, but he took every measure to reduce the risk to his own ship and passengers. He added a man to the crow’s nest, put two more on the bow, one on each wing of the bridge, and he stayed there himself. His second officer, James Bisset, then noticed his captain taking one last measure which he considered the most important of all—He prayed.
At 2:45 a.m. Bisset saw the first iceberg. They steered around it and kept going. The next hour they dodged five more. At 4:00 a.m. they reached the Titanic’s last called position and began picking up lifeboats. As the sun rose it revealed an astonishing sight; the sea was full of icebergs for as far as the eye could see in all directions. Even with all the lookouts the Carpathia had passed numerous icebergs which they had not even seen. No one could imagine how they missed them all except their pious captain. He knew that he had done all that he could, but he still needed the Lord’s help.
The difficult rescue of the survivors was carried out with such order and discipline that peace reigned over all. The Carpathia’s passengers caught the spirit of self-sacrifice from her crew. Her first class passengers gave their own quarters to survivors; others were pitching in to do all they could. On one of the darkest nights of tragedy ever experienced on the high seas the Carpathia’s captain, crew and passengers stand out as bright lights of courage and heroism. They are a demonstration of what the Lord has called us to be in the night of tragedy and loss that is now falling upon the earth. Let us not sleep as some did, or be fooled by the calmness of the sea. Let us be prepared!
The above article was taken from Rick Joyner’s book The Harvest. This book details a vision that Rick had concerning the end times. A brief summary of this vision was first circulated in 1987. It quickly found its way into major periodicals and countless newsletters, reaching millions in just a little over a year. It has been called “a prophetic word for the nineties” by major Christian leaders. You may order this book from our MINISTRY BOOKSTORE, your local Christian bookstore or directly from MorningStar Ministries.
Rick Joyner is the founder of MorningStar Ministries located in Charlotte, North Carolina and the author of several books, including: The Journey Begins, The Final Quest and Leadership, Management and the Five Essentials for Success. His prophetic articles have been widely distributed throughout the body of Christ. Rick also travels throughout the US and abroad as a conference speaker with a message of devotion to Christ and preparation for the coming harvest.
You may write to the address below for a catalog of Rick Joyner’s latest books and tapes or use his toll free order line (this is for orders only):
375 Star Light Dr
Fort Mill, SC 29715
The Coming Revival
America’s Call to Fast, Pray, and “Seek God’s Face” by Dr. Bill Bright
The message of this book, written in 1995, grows increasingly timely each year. Quoting Bill Bright, “In this critical hour, nothing is more important than fasting, praying, repenting, and seeking God’s face. Our nation is in a moral free-fall and desperately needs God’s intervention; the Great Commission is near fulfillment; the greatest spiritual harvest in history is within our grasp. We are asking God to send revival to our nation and the world to enable us to fulfill the Great Commission.”
In this powerful book by Dr. Bill Bright, founder of Campus Crusade for Christ, he shares his personal testimony of how God led him to fast for 40 days, and the resulting passion for revival and intimacy with the Holy Spirit that has been awakened in him. He candidly shares inspiring stories of his own doubts and fears, as well as practical medically sound advice, and encouragement in how to begin a fast for a day or a month. This book offers complete coverage of any issue or question that one may have about fasting, as well as a history of revival movements.
This is highly recommended reading for anyone who is interested in revival, on a personal as well as worldwide level. Anyone who plans on participating in the 40-day nationwide fast will find this book to be an invaluable resource. —Mercy Aiken
Dr. Bill Bright is founder of Campus Crusade for Christ. Dr. Bright is also a prolific author and a well known and respected minister throughout the world. You may contact Dr. Bright at:
Campus Crusade for Christ International
100 Sunport Lane
Orlando, Florida 32809
Website Addresse: https://www.ccci.org
The book, The Coming Revival, is available in paperback priced at $9.99 in our Ministry Bookstore or from your local Christian bookstore.
HE IS RISEN
by Margie M. Baker
The mournful Sabbath day was past
When all had been at rest;
Then in the dawn, three women came
To Him whom they loved best.
The morn was bright, but, oh, the gloom
In tender, loving hearts
No joy for them, but anguish keen
To pierce like fiery darts.
Three crosses stood upon a hill,
And on one He had died;
No wonder then the awful grief
Not one of them could hide.
The sweet aroma of the spice
They carried for the task
Of anointing His dear body
Caused one of them to ask:
“Who shall roll away the stone
That we may enter in
To anoint the One who gave His life
To free us from all sin?”
When they looked, they saw the stone
Was already rolled away,
And an angel clothed in raiment white
Began to softly say:
“Be not afraid, the One you seek for,
The whole world crucified,
Is not here among the dead
‘Though on a cross He died.
Behold, the place where He was laid,
Then go your way and tell
All who love Him, that some day
In heaven they will dwell.”
“For He is risen, and He lives
To walk among His own.
No grave could hold Him, even tho’
His enemies sealed the stone.”
The women did as they were bid
And quickly spread the word,
“He is risen, He is risen,
JESUS CHRIST, OUR LORD!”
THE OVERCOMING LIFE DIGEST is published for the purpose of strengthening the Body of Christ by furnishing teaching literature and a prophetic voice to the church in these last days. CHRIST UNLIMITED is helping and working with all Bible-believing Christians regardless of their church or denominational affiliations in promoting the Gospel of Jesus Christ. CHRIST UNLIMITED believes the hour is late and we must fulfill the great commission. We, as Christians, desire to cooperate with the Lord in breaking down denominational walls, for a united front line against the kingdom of darkness and setting up the Kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit.
CHRIST UNLIMITED MINISTRIES, INC. and CHRIST UNLIMITED PUBLISHING provide such tools through literature as to enable the saints of God to take the Kingdom and walk in the overcoming life as promised us in John 10:10 and Revelation 21:7.
CHRIST UNLIMITED PUBLISHING
President: R.S. “Bud” Miller
Editor: Betty Miller
Electronic Editor: Courtney Gould
At the present this magazine is NOT available in hardcopy nor do we email individual copies. However, copies of all publications are available online at https://bibleresources.org/overcomig-life/. Don’t forget to check back frequently to view new volumes as they are posted.
THE OVERCOMING LIFE DIGEST is a publication of:
CHRIST UNLIMITED MINISTRIES, INC.
P.O. BOX 850
DEWEY, ARIZONA, 86327 USA
Your designated contribution of any amount will be used to send literature and Bibles to foreign ministers, prisoners and other needy Christians. Contributions to CHRIST UNLIMITED MINISTRIES, INC. are tax deductible under 501(c) (3) of the IRS Tax Code.
All scripture quotations are from the King James Version of the Bible unless otherwise noted.
COPYRIGHT NOTICE/REPRODUCTION LIMITATIONS: The data in this file is the sole property of Christ Unlimited Publishing. It may not be altered or edited in any way. It may be reproduced only in its entirety for circulation as “freeware,” without charge. All reproductions of this data file must contain the copyright notice [i.e., “Copyright (C) by Christ Unlimited Publishing”]. This data file may not be used without the permission of Christ Unlimited Publishing for resale or the enhancement of any other product sold. This includes all of its content with the exception of a few brief quotations. Please give the following source credit: “Copyright © by Christ Unlimited Publishing, Dewey, Arizona. All rights reserved.”
PRINTING: Any part of this periodical may be copied freely (if not intended for sale) simply by touching the print button on your browser. However, to republish any portion for publication, permission must be obtained in writing from Christ Unlimited Publishing.
We encourage you to distribute this material to anyone that you think it would bless. The pages are free but they are copyrighted. You have permission to download copies of any page and to reproduce them for non-commercial, educational purposes, provided:
- It is used without alteration, other than sectioning it into smaller pieces. Also, it must always include the author’s name and website (www.bibleresources.org) at the beginning of the file if it is a paper or outline. All reproductions of this data file must contain the copyright notice [i.e., “Copyright © by Christ Unlimited Publishing“].
- If it is a printed file, the author’s name should appear on each page along with the website (www.bibleresources.org).
- If it is a downloaded file, article, bulletin, etc. in HTML format that is used on a website, you must include a hypertext link to the CHRIST UNLIMITED website at https://www.bibleresources.org.
We hope you are blessed by the OVERCOMING LIFE DIGEST and that you find the material beneficial.