A Song by The Barn Again Gang


See the perspectives of Jesus ON His mother's side


Thursday, February 11, 2016

What Is The Best Way To Protect Yourself Against False Teaching?

Christianity.com Daily Update

What is the Best Way to Protect Yourself against False Teaching?

Liz Kanoy

Some Christians can easily come up with a list of dangerous pastors, speakers, or books…but there are others who are not able to tell the difference as easily. Aaron Armstrong, blogger and speaker, has written a blog piece titled How do we protect ourselves against false teaching? on his website, Blogging Theologically. He relays,
As a new Christian—and worse, a new Christian developing doctrinal convictions—I tended to wield my lofty opinions (some of which were even right) as a mighty hammer with which to smash my perceived foes. So I would do stupid things like blurt out, “Why would you read that—don’t you know it’s heretical nonsense?” And let me tell you, that does not win friends or influence people.”
Armstrong expresses that sometimes our “mighty theological hammer of justice” does not always have the effect we intend. Instead we should be asking, why are so many Christians prey to these false teachers? How can we address the real problem? Armstrong says the root of the problem is biblical illiteracy among many Christians today. If Christians don’t know that what they’re hearing is wrong, they won’t question it. So how do we protect ourselves from false teaching and encourage others to do the same? Armstrong writes,
I’ve really come to appreciate the simple truth that the best way to protect ourselves against false teaching (and protect others from it as well) is not always with lofty arguments, but with the consistent study of Scripture.”
I once heard a pastor ask his congregation, what’s the best way to spot counterfeits—do you study as many counterfeits as you can or do you study the real thing? The answer is the real thing…there will always be counterfeits, and new ones will pop up every day. But while counterfeits may change, Scripture stays the same.
The solution is to know what Scriptures says and compare everything else against it. If you’re not sure ask yourself, “What do the Scriptures say?” Then seek it out. God gifted us with his Spirit for a reason; He's ready and willing to help us with our understanding. Armstrong explains,
When we read a book, even by a generally trustworthy source, we need to ask this. When we listen to our pastors’ sermons, we ought to do likewise. When we read blogs and tweets and other such things, we must always ask this question. When we do this, when we are committed to, with the help of the Holy Spirit, seeking to understand the Scriptures to the best of our ability, and when we hold all teaching—even good teaching—up to its light, there is no place for false teaching to hide.”
To read Aaron Armstrong's full article please visit BloggingTheologically.com.
In 3 Ways to Handle False Teaching and False Teachers Crosswalk.com Contributor Matthew Harmon states, “… every believer is responsible for being so familiar with the true gospel that false teaching is immediately obvious. The gospel is the only way that we can be made pure, because it points us to the only one who is truly pure-Jesus Christ.
For Christians it is important to spend time in the Word each day because the more we know Scripture the easier it will be to spot false truths. Not only will we be able to spot false teaching, but our relationship with God will be so much richer. We have nothing to lose when it comes to spending time in God's Word!   

Count Your Blessings

                                      COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS

Most people dwell on what's negative and whatever they lack in life. They always compare themselves with people who have accomplished more in life. They want the very best that life can offer but they end up frustrated and stressed. Why? Because no man has the monopoly of the very best in life. Each man has his own limitations in life and life on earth is never perfect. To be happy and contented in life, why not try the opposite approach. Why not count our blessings instead of what's lacking in us. Why not be thankful to God for whatever blessings He has bestowed on us. Then we will see that this is a wonderful world bestowed with so many blessings that we would lose count  on them. Surely there's the fresh air that we breathe every day. And there's that warm sunshine that dispels all gloominess in this world. And who is not thrilled when they see a rainbow up in the sky. Even the myriads of birds and insects that fly in the air remind us of how blessed we are to be alive. The waves of the sea that constantly traverse the seashore gives us a tingling feeling when they embrace our feet. And who would forget the wonderful sounds of nature at night when the night creatures begin to sing their lullaby. And we will have peace and joy in our hearts if we know that we are walking in the will of God and have accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and savior. Then we can really anticipate that blissful reunion with the Lord in heaven and enjoy life eternal. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Vignettes From The Pearly Gates (Additional posts)

                                          VIGNETTES FROM THE PEARLY GATES

If you have already accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and savior, and if you remain faithful to God's will in your life, nothing can snatch you away from the Lord. Hear His promise. "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish, and no one shall them out of My hand." (John 10: 27-28)

                                           VIGNETTES FROM THE PEARLY GATES

If you have not yet accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and savior, please do so now before it is already too late. "Seek the Lord while you can find Him. Call on Him now while He is near. Let the wicked change their ways and banish the very thoughts of doing wrong. Let them turn to the Lord that He may have mercy on them. Yes, turn to our God, for He will forgive generously." (Isaiah 55: 6-7)

                                       VIGNETTES FROM THE PEARLY GATES

"If any of you needs wisdom to know what you should do, you should ask God, and He will give it to you. God is generous to everyone and He does not find fault with them. When you ask for something, do not have any doubts. A person who has doubts is like a wave that is blown by the wind, and tossed by the sea. A person who has doubts is thinking about two different things at the same time and can't make up his mind about anything." (James 1: 5-8)

                                      VIGNETTES FROM THE PEARLY GATES

Anxious`about something dreadful that might happen to you? Losing sleep on a frightful possibility that might happen to you? Here's the solution to your problem. "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4: 6-7)

                                  VIGNETTES FROM THE PEARLY GATES

PSALM 23 (Chapters 1 - 6)
"The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me towards paths of righteousness for His name's sake. Even though I walk in the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows. Surely, goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life. And I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever."

                                  VIGNETTES FROM THE PEARLY GATES

Love conquers all. Hear what Paul says about love. "If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, if I have faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing." (1Corinthians 13: 1-3)

                                  VIGNETTES FROM THE PEARLY GATES

Be vigilant and careful in what you believe in so that you may not be deceived. "Be careful not to allow anyone to captive you through an empty deceitful philosophy that is according to human traditions and the elemental spirits to the world and not according to Christ. For in Him all the fullness of deity lives in bodily form and you have been filled in Him, who is the head over every ruler and authority." (Colossians 2: 8-10)

                               VIGNETTES FROM THE PEARLY GATES

As much as possible, be at peace with everyone you know, forgiving their offenses as much as God has forgiven yours. "Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other's faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace." (Ephesians 4: 2-3)  

Tuesday, February 9, 2016


                               OUR WILL VS GOD'S WILL

We were taught that we must exercise our will in order to survive and achieve success in life. The stronger our will, the better for us. But in the spiritual realm, the opposite is true. We must discern God's will and do it in our lives in order for us to advance in God's kingdom. It boils down to a clash between the two- God's will versus our will. The more we exercise our will and become successful in life, the more will we become independent of God. And the more we become independent of God, the more we rely on our own strengths and resources instead of being dependent on God. We may never notice it but we will slowly and surely drift away from God. And before we realize it, we are already building up our own monuments of success. This will start our downfall in life. We may become financially successful and powerful in life but we become bereft of the true riches of heaven. We become king of the earth but a miserable pauper in God's kingdom. But what is worst is that, we lose our passport to God's kingdom and eternal life with God.  

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Responding To Opposition And Persecution

Responding to Opposition and Persecution

Founders Ministries exists to work for the recovery of the gospel and the biblical re-formation of local churches. They have a myriad of ministries that are given to that two-pronged effort, including a
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It is impossible to live a faithful Christian life without experiencing opposition and persecution. Jesus promises his disciples that in this world we “will have tribulation” (John 16:33), and Paul warns Timothy that “all who desire to live a godly live in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Timothy 3:12). Given this inevitable reality, how then are followers of Jesus to respond to such treatment?
Jesus clearly answers that question when he says, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44) and “bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you” (Luke 6:28). This is what apostles teach, as well. “Bless those who persecute you, bless and do not curse” (Romans 12:14); “Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing” (1 Peter 3:9).
It is natural to become defensive or combative when mistreated, but the way of Christ calls us to respond with humility and love. As we remember our sin and what we actually deserve, we are humbled. As we remember our opponents and what they actually need, we desire to see them blessed.
Two examples stand out in my mind as illustrating this kind of grace at work. The first comes from a fascinating scene in the life of King David. When his son Absalom usurped his throne, David was forced to flee Jerusalem. Early in his journey Shimei confronted him and his entourage by throwing stones at them and cursing David, “Get out, get out, you man of blood, you worthless man! The LORD has avenged on you all the blood of the house of Saul, in whose place you have reigned, and theLORD has given the kingdom into the hand of your son Absalom. See, your evil is on you, for you are a man of blood” (2 Samuel 16:7–8).
Those words had enough truth in them to pierce David’s conscience. One of his mighty men, Abishai, wanted to decapitate that “dead dog” Shimei, but David, reminded of his own sin and God’s sovereignty over even these events, refused to allow any vengeful response and to leave the matter with God.
The second example comes from the life of George Whitefield, the 18th century evangelist who was greatly used in the Great Awakening. He was often abused by opponents, even having rotten fruit and dead cats thrown at him on occasion. Perhaps nothing wounded him more deeply than to be vilified in the name of Christ by fellow ministers of the gospel. He describes one such occasion that took place on a Sunday morning in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1740.
In the morning, I went to church, and heard the Commissary [representative of the Bishop of London] preach. Had some infernal spirit been sent to draw my picture, I think it scarcely possible that he could have painted me in more horrid colours. I think, if ever, then was the time that all manner of evil was spoken against me falsely for Christ’s sake. The Commissary seemed to ransack church history for instances of enthusiasm and abused grace. He drew a parallel between me and all the Oliverians, Ranters, Quakers, French Prophets, till he came down to a family of the Dutarts, who lived, not many years ago, in South Carolina, and were guilty of the most notorious incests and murder.
How would you have responded to being singled out, lied about, and scorned in such a way in a Sunday morning sermon? Whitefield’s response shows us the way of Christ.
To the honour of God’s free grace be it spoken, whilst the Commissary was representing me thus, I felt the Blessed Spirit strengthening and refreshing my soul. God, at the same time, gave me to see what I was by nature, and how I had deserved His eternal wrath; and, therefore, I did not feel the least resentment against the preacher. No; I pitied, I prayed for him; and wished, from my soul, that the Lord would convert him, as he once did the persecutor Saul, and let him know that it is Jesus Whom he persecutes. In the evening, many came, I was informed, to hear what I would say; but as the Commissary hinted, that his sermons should be printed, and as they were full of invidious falsehood, I held my tongue, and made little or no reply.
This is precisely the way that our Lord responded when he suffered to accomplish our salvation. In doing so he has provide us with an example of how we who follow him are to respond. “When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly” (1 Peter 2:23).
Christians must remember that our Master secured our salvation through suffering and crucifixion. The path that we are called to walk as we work out that salvation in our own lives is no different. As servants, we are not above our Master. By the grace that comes from our Lord, we can learn to live by faith in him so that we do not respond to opposition and persecution in the same way as those who do not know his grace. As we do so, we demonstrate that there is a power greater than our own strength at work in our lives and provide a platform for the source of this power to be proclaimed with persuasive credibility.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Now I Know.....Now I Understand

                                      NOW I KNOW.......NOW I UNDERSTAND

I consider myself the biggest underachiever in the world. Although we were not actually well off but struggling, I started out in life with a lot of promise. I was very serious in my studies and my family looked at me as a great deliverer. After school, I landed a good job at the biggest company in the Philippines where everybody looked at me as a trailblazer. But somewhere along the way, controversy hit me and I found myself resigning because I stepped on somebody's toes and those toes belonged to a company bigwig. I drifted from one company to another hoping to land a bigger and more prestigious job than my previous employment. But alas, fate must have conspired to bring me down. I was saddled by life threatening sicknesses right and left which rendered me ineffectual in my job and was forced to retire early in life. My life made a turnaround in 2000 when I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and savior and became born again. Although I became stronger and more resilient in life, the spiral downward dip in my life continued until I was left with nothing in life. I was confounded and asked the Lord the reason for it. Later on I found the answer to my questions. The Lord brought me down to the lowest level because He wanted me to serve Him. I know my vocation in the Christian ministry is to teach. And that's what I am doing now. I now look for the welfare of others disregarding my own. I remember the words I told my audience in a Bible study in a very depressed area before. How miserable will you be if you are living a miserable life now and later on become more miserable in the afterlife because you failed to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and savior. We have to make every effort to achieve the condition that "none should perish." Every soul is valuable and people who live wanton lives never knew what awaits them. Now I know....now I understand.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

6 Critical Truths To Understand About Anger

6 Critical Truths to Understand about Anger

Mark Altrogge
Mark Altrogge has been senior pastor of Saving Grace Church of Indiana, Pennsylvania, since 1982. He has written hundreds of songs for worship, including “I Stand in Awe” and “I’m Forever Grateful.” Mark an
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The Bible has a lot to say about anger.
I don’t mean righteous anger, the kind of anger we can experience toward injustice or evil but sinful anger. Many times we may feel we are “righteous” in our anger because someone wronged us. Anger often involves our sense of justice. But it’s very easy to slide into sinful anger, hatred, and bitterness. Here are some Biblical truths and principles that God has used to help me make progress in conquering my own sinful anger.
Anger is not caused by other people or our circumstances. It comes out of our own hearts.
For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. MT 15:19
No one else can make you angry. Circumstances don’t cause your anger. Anger is your own sin. David Powlison says our hearts are like sponges. If I squeeze a sponge and black ink comes out, it might seem that the squeezing caused black ink to come out. Yet I might squeeze another sponge and have clear water come out. So, it was not the squeeze that caused the ink to come out, but ink came out because that was what was in the sponge. The squeeze merely revealed what was there in the first place. Other people and circumstances can “squeeze” our hearts and if anger comes out, it is because that’s what was in our heart.
Anger is caused by our own unfulfilled desires.
What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. JA 4:1–2
James says our own “passions”—cravings and desires—cause all our quarrels and fights. We desire and do not have; so, we murder, fight, and quarrel. In other words, we want something and we don’t get it; so, we get angry. Whenever you are angry ask yourself, “What is it that I want right now that I’m not getting?” Once I told my kids to go to bed and heard them wrestling and throwing things upstairs. When I went up I said, “You’re making me mad,” to which one replied, “But you have said no one else can make you mad.” I said, “You’re right. You are disobeying me, which tempts me (squeezes me), and it is my anger, my sin.” When I went downstairs I asked myself, “What do I want that I’m not getting?” My answer: I wanted to relax. I wanted kids who always perfectly and immediately obeyed. I wanted to watch TV, not oversee bedtime.
Anger won’t make anyone do the right thing. 
Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. JA 1:19–20
Many times we think anger will motivate others to do the “right” thing. Parents think anger will make their kids do the right thing, or act “righteously.” But anger won’t produce the righteousness of God. Anger might make kids outwardly obey, like little Pharisees, but it won’t change their hearts. Anger won’t produce inward righteousness in our spouse or coworkers. Anger does no good.
Anger toward another person is murder of the heart.
“You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brotherc will be liable to judgment; whoever insultsd his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.” MT 5:21–22
We tend to downplay the seriousness of anger. “I was just venting” or “letting off steam.” But Jesus said anger is murder of the heart and a violation of one of the 10 commandments. It can make us subject to the very hell of fire.
Anger makes things worse. 
A harsh word stirs up anger. PR 15:1
A hot-tempered man stirs up strife. PR 15:18
Not only does anger fail to produce righteousness, it makes things worse. It stirs up anger in others. It stirs up strife. It has the opposite effect to what we are desiring.
Anger opens the door for Satan
Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil. EPH 4:26–27
When we “let the sun go down on our anger” or fail to deal with it in a timely fashion, either by asking forgiveness, forgiving others, or working things out with them, it opens the door for Satan to tempt us to bitterness, revenge, slander, and a host of other sins. Cain’s anger at Abel led him to kill his brother. Anger is serious. We must deal with it quickly.
These truths have helped me numerous times when I’ve been tempted to anger.  I’m not saying I’ve conquered it and I never sin in anger. But by God’s grace, understanding these things has helped me make progress. I hope you, too, will find God’s Word and Spirit help you make progress in overcoming anger.

Mark Altrogge has been senior pastor of Sovereign Grace Church of Indiana, Pennsylvania, since 1982. He has written hundreds of songs for worship, including “I Stand in Awe” and “I’m Forever Grateful.” Mark and his wife, Kristi, have four sons and one daughter. Find out more on his blog, The Blazing Center.