Tag Archives: christian faith

Is Every Person Convicted By The Holy Spirit?

The immediate answer that came to my mind was, “No. Because how can someone be convicted by what they don’t believe in?”. I had what felt like a heavy handed conversation last week, not in the way that you might interpret. We were talking about this question and I was explaining the experience of my conviction… Burdened—is probably a more appropriate word—I think is the term my friend used as he understood my position as perfect as a therapist would. I’ve had several conversations with this brother previous to this specific one. Diversity couldn’t be defined better upon learning about our relationship. And he was actually a prayer request to understand our present issues from a different perspective, and it was specific. My friend is a black gay conservative Christian.

My friend asked a good question about my conviction which was whether I believed I could lose my salvation. To which I referred to Hebrews and Romans for insight and pondered about how to answer considering my lifestyle compared to his belief; because he believed that a person can be saved while holding onto a homosexual lifestyle, whereas I believed that a person who has chosen that lifestyle has yet to become saved. I felt heavily burdened by communicating that because of how it might be perceived. The fact that it was a very delicate issue didn’t help and the last thing I wanted to communicate is myself to be the determining factor of salvation, but rather that the meaning of salvation is being communicated effectively through the conviction of the Holy Spirit. If what I am speaking is true, then the matter is turned to the person listening and contending with the Word of God for themselves. Jesus is the One Who determines their salvation by knowing the heart of that person processing the information of salvation.

What is biblical conviction? (see video)

What is the outcome for biblical conviction? (see video)


What Is The Chosen

And they prayed and said, “You, Lord, who know the hearts of all men, show which one of these two You have chosen to occupy this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place.”

Acts 1:24-26


The chosen are the apostles of Jesus the Nazarene. Jesus called these 12 chosen to follow Him personally during His ministry of the kingdom of His Father our God to His excruciating death on the cross. Notice that these people responded by accepting their call to follow and went, not that they chose Jesus, but are chosen by Jesus. However, one of these apostles who also went and shared in Jesus’ ministry as (our verse above describes) took his portion of that ministry and went to his own place. But what place was that? A place called Hakeldama, that is, Field of Blood (Act 1:19). Earlier in the chapter of Acts, the chosen apostles tell about 120 followers of Jesus that Judas was a personification of scripture fulfilled—“For it is written in the book of Psalms, ‘LET HIS HOMESTEAD BE MADE DESOLATE, AND LET NO ONE DWELL IN IT’; and, ‘LET ANOTHER MAN TAKE HIS OFFICE.’ (Act 1, Psa 69, 109, Zec 5). So it was time to fill that office and the qualifications were men that accompanied Christ from His baptism to Him being taken up to the right hand of God after His resurrection from the dead (Acts 1:21-22, 2:32-33).

The chosen is a land and a people of Israel for the Kingdom of God that was taken from the hardened hearts of the chief priests and Pharisees in their office of the old covenant (Genesis 18:18-20, Matt 21:33-46, Roman 11). And that Kingdom was given to the apostles that share in our present ministry of the new covenant through the blood of Jesus Christ (Luke 22:20). The Kingdom of God today is a ministry of reconciliation (2 Cor 5:17-21) through the power and glory of God with the promise of the Holy Spirit. And it might be that you are wondering whether you are reconciled to God? If so, don’t worry, because every single one of the apostles wondered whether they were the one to betray Jesus saying, “Surely it is not I…?(John 13:21-25, Mark 14:18-21 Matt 26:21-25, Luke 22:14-23). There was a time when I asked that question for myself, only a little differently. Let’s look at what sets the 11 Christians apart from Judas and the reason the lot fell to Matthais to fill his office .

It looks plausible that Judas was stealing enough money throughout his life including the course of their ministry to acquire a field before his betrayal (Acts 1:18). He had thrown the 30 pieces of silver back to the chief priests (Matt 26:15, 27:3-9, Zech 11:12-13), which indicates to me that he’d already acquired the field by his wickedness. The betrayal of Judas reminds me of the rogue angel (Eze 28:12-17) guised in the eyes of a woman to be a serpent trusted by what God said to be very good (Gen 1:31), but was actually an act of betrayal. Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field that the Lord God had made(Gen 3:1). The consequential program of the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is genius, because in it is the capacity for what is created to be good capable of evil (Gen 2:9, Isa 5:20, 41:23, Eze 28:12-17 ). We are not forced to be evil, all of creation is given life to share with God our Father in the program He wrote with the blood ink of His only Son, The Word of God (Rev 12:13, John 3:16, Acts 4:12).

The Lord knows the hearts of all men. If you are honest about your heart, what would the Lord know about it? We are all thieves on the cross, but are you the thief saying… “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong. Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” (Luke 23:39-43)?

What Is Discipline

We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

1 John 4:16


You might have noticed a theme to these “What Is…” devotionals. I’ve stayed around the subject of Judas Iscariot because the relationship between Judas and Jesus reveals the love of God for His enemies; that’s paramount. But it also reveals the authority that is given the Son of Man to remove the restrainer that protects against the lawlessness of Satan (2 Thes 2:7).

God loves us as a Father that disciplines His children (Heb 12:7-11). We can see that happening as Judas exercises miracles, authority over demons, preaches the kingdom at hand (Mat 10:5-8) and even eats the morsel received from Jesus at the passover (Jhn 13:26). So if God loved Judas, why would Satan be permitted to enter into him? Let’s look at this from another angle. Remember when Jesus calls out Peter saying, “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded permission to sift you like wheat; but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail; and you, when once you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.” (Luk 22:31-32). What was going on with Peter that Jesus would say this to him? My observation (and Peter please forgive me for where I might be wrong) is his desire to lead by acting on Christ’s behalf, his ambition manifests through insecurities wanting to prove himself. And it looks like Satan was eating that up inside Peter because it wasn’t that Peter wanted to deny Christ, but his zeal was clouding his judgment about what Christ meant regarding thrones to judge the twelve tribes of Israel (Luk 22:30); possibly felt an erratic jolt of emotions for such a position, not to mention what came next, and didn’t know how to react or respond other than to get ampt. Next thing you know he cuts off a dudes ear and starts cursing… can you relate?! Shoot, I feel like I can!

But what do we make of Satan? This issue of sin dates back to the seed of Adam and is written in our DNA because Adam was not deceived when eating that fruit (1 Tim 2:14, Gen 3:6). And so we were living in the lie of evil because we are of our father the devil (Jhn 8:44) choosing to believe in ourselves rather than the truth of the Word of God (Gen 3:7), which is what Peter was doing by cutting off the right ear of a chief priests’ slave at the arrest of Jesus (Luk 18:10) and then denying Jesus for fear of his own life because it was time for the hour of darkness (Luk 22:53) in fulfillment of scripture. Notice what Jesus said to Simon (Peter),but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail; …” Jesus said that He prayed for Peter. And why if Peter has no choice to his faith? After all, God is the one that hardens the heart, and Judas is the one to betray Jesus. So what glory is there to marvel at if God creates His vessels to do what they have no power over? We would be robotic in nature, without option but to marvel. Jesus prayed to His Father who gives us our faith that will either condemn or save us based on the condition of our hearts. And we are either using the faith of God to become hardened like Judas to an illegitimate father (Satan 1 Cor 5:5, 2 Thess 1:9)); or receiving salvation as promised like Peter through a relationship with the love of our heavenly Father (Jesus (Mat 18:14, 1 Tim 2)). Because faith is obeying by believing that Jesus did come in the flesh, and is Son of God, that grants us our promise into the kingdom of God (Jhn 14:6).

The last significant detail about these words of Jesus to Simon is,and you, when once you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.” . There is an obvious mediation going on here by the data revealed about Simon’s heart. Jesus is confident that Simon will be turned again to Peter (Mat 16:18) for the responsibility of His office. But it’s through his portion of faith (Rom 12:3-6) to trust in the seal of the Holy Spirit (Jhn 3:33-36, 2 Tim 2:19-26).

What Is Justice?

“Truly I say to you, wherever this gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be spoken of in memory of her.”

Matthew 26:13


Indeed… This gospel is being preached in the whole world! But why is it that this woman will be remembered for what she did? This devotional is something special to me because of what this woman did, and I hope it will prove the same for you. Because it might be that you are troubled by this idea of value; value as—your faith in Jesus Christ to be your personal Lord, and Savior, who took away your sin—wondering whether you are worthy of such an anointing of salvation (1 Jo 2:27) by thoughts and feelings of past issues and present sins? How value is weighed and measured from a human or carnal perspective is costly because it’s deceptive. God is patient toward the activity of sin in this world for you, right now, reading this, because even the most unworthy can hear and believe this good news if their willing to receive it. But put this memory of the woman in your heart and mind as we learn just how worthy you are to God through what Jesus Christ did.

When Jesus was in Bethany, at the home of Simon the leper, a woman came to Him with an alabaster vial of very costly perfume, and she poured it on His head as He reclined at the table. But the disciples were indignant when they saw this, and said, “Why this waste? “For this perfume might have been sold for a high price and the money given to the poor.” But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why do you bother the woman? For she has done a good deed to Me. “For you always have the poor with you; but you do not always have Me. “For when she poured this perfume on My body, she did it to prepare Me for burial. Notice how all the disciples became indignant or angrily suspicious at this treatment because their focus was in the value of the perfume, instead of Jesus. And one disciple in particular became so twisted in the heart giving root to that emotion of indignation sought the opportunity to betray Jesus (Matt 26:14-16) through the temple priests already conspiring how to kill Jesus (Matt 26:1-5); Judas Iscariot became the how to for the priests already under the influence of evil; the invisible work of the devil uses the justice and love of God to manipulate the human perception, in this case, the minds of the temple priests and the heart of Judas Iscariot.

Justice is the law of God that Jesus Christ fulfilled and still proclaims today (Mat 5:17, Mat 12:18); which means the continued sacrifice of lambs, the temple building and priests, have no longer been necessary for the forgiveness of sins; the death and burial of Jesus Christ is the passing of the old covenant, while the new covenant is born in His bodily resurrection (a new body). And the reason this woman anointed Jesus with the costly perfume is because she perceived the significance of the burial. The perfume represents you and the fragrance of you is a soothing aroma to God. Your faith is that fragrance of Jesus Christ to God that produces salvation in you as your sin dies and is buried forever by believing that your sin was taken away to the cross of Jesus Christ. It is buried in history. You are free! Now that we believe with confidence that Jesus was raised from the dead, we too are raised from the dead by grace through faith, having a clean conscience before the throne of God (a new body). Your sin has no power over you. So turn from your sin, and have eternal life in Jesus Christ (the Son of Man).


The featured image is from The CHOSEN season 1 episode 8 and it turns out that this series is reaching the world with the gospel just as this verse with words in red indicate would happen. And no, this is not a paid mention for The Chosen or any favor. This is just information, and hope, for reaching the world with the gospel that preaches Jesus Christ.

What Is Truth?

Pilate *said to Him, “What is truth?” And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews and *said to them, “I find no guilt in Him.

John 18:38


Can you feel that question… “What is truth?…” If I may, please let me challenge you to ask that question for yourself without bias, don’t assume to know. Ask yourself, “What is truth?” For me that question causes thoughts about how I’ve come to know my truth. Questions immediately stir about my birth into this world (born into the Dooley family, Warrensburg Missouri—USA 1988, brought up in the Christian faith), but also… “How was it that I could comprehend two plus two equals four and why?” That question did actually come to mind, but more than that though, “…what does the value of truth mean and my relationship to that value?” This is quite the labor that will take some serious work to peel away the layers of life and indoctrination to discover what is truth. But when we do, it’s sooo worth it!

Pilate was in a position to crucify our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. And if he knew the truth of what he was doing, do you think that he would have crucified Jesus? Pilate thought that he had the power to release Jesus (Jhn 19:10), but what did Jesus say? “You would have no authority over Me, unless it had been given you from above; for this reason he who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.” So who then delivered Jesus to Pilate? Jesus then *answered, “That is the one for whom I shall dip the morsel and give it to him.” So when He had dipped the morsel, He *took and *gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot. After the morsel, Satan then entered into him. Therefore Jesus *said to him, “What you do, do quickly.” (Jhn 13:26-27). When Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me (Jhn 14:6)—Jesus answered our question to this devotional.

Truth is not determined by angels or people because the authority to determine what truth is, belongs to the Son of God—the Word of God through Jesus Christ. Notice what command Jesus gave to Judas after Satan had entered him, Jesus told the fallen angel that we know as Satan to follow through the desire of Judas’ heart. And the truth about the heart of Judas was to betray Jesus for money (Mat 26:14-16). And so this is why it is so unwise to act as though you believe in Jesus while yet holding onto the idea of disbelief for the sake of gain. Do not wait for the opportunity to sell your confidence in Jesus for “money” and Satan to possess your heart. Check yourself before you enter into your future. Don’t feel ashamed to wonder about the condition of your heart, trust in Jesus Christ.

How Faith Makes One Perfected In Love

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

1 John 4:18


Don’t confuse the language of fear in this verse with the language of fear in the Lord, because the meaning of fear in this verse is very different than having the fear of the Lord (Pro 14:26). If you believe in Jesus Christ as the living Son of God that has come in the flesh (1Jo 4:2) then you have no reason to fear as described because our faith produces confidence in love that fills the place of fear (Heb 4:16) through conversion. God is love (1Jo 4:16)!

  • But you might be struggling with doubt or disbelief that God is love?
  • Or it might be that your belief is secure, but your faith is in question?

I pray this devotional will encompass you with perfect love. We need to establish the experience of faith to understand how love is perfected as the previous devotional incited. To do that, lets distinguish the difference between belief and faith because the relationship between the two reveals the invisible power of God for salvation to glorification. If you’re not a Christian, please consider following along our devotionals.


THE TREASURE OF FAITH

If you are a Christian, then you know who Jesus Christ is because you’ve heard and believed in the good news of the gospel; God sent His only Son (Jesus Christ) to be that Person who took away the sin of the world (Jhn 1:29, Heb 9:26). That means every repentant believer—although experiencing the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the boastful pride of life—is born again to salvation through the baptism of Jesus Christ (Mat 3:13-17, 1Jo 2:16, Rom 10:8-13, Mark 16:16, Act 2:38). When our Lord was baptized, the heavens opened and our heavenly Father said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.”(Mat 3:17). Why was our heavenly Father well-pleased?

Justice for sin is the death of this world unless it passes over somehow for life to exist eternally. To be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect means to have faith in the love of God—For God so loved the world—that He gave us the example of faith (Jhn 3:16-21). So to believe in Jesus means we’ve experienced salvation from our sin by the transfer of our account, that’s right, money and all—the sin of our souls—onto the cross of Jesus Christ. That requires faith! We no longer fear death because our lives are covered by the blood of Jesus Christ who still lives (Act 2:33)! And that is how death passes over those who believe. So to have faith in Jesus means our future is established in heaven where He is right now (Rom 8:35-39)!

The relationship between belief and faith is a declaration of trust in the invisible work of God. The aim of our faith is what casts out fear because we look to Jesus Christ!

The two most difficult tasks of faith conversion:

(1)Dying to the idol worship of yourself (because when your faith is in sin—rejection of the truth—your belief remains in the evil one of this world Jhn 8:44). The other is (2)loving your enemy to the extent Jesus loves you (because it’s only natural to gravitate toward the comfort of your environment (Gal 2:11-13) and harbor animosity against your abusers — to not care for the life of your enemies Mat 5:43-48). But when your belief is united by faith in Jesus (Heb 4:2), you’ve overcome the evil one (1Jo 2:12-14) and have the power to love your enemy even to death; your life is converted by the aim of your faith because your belief rests where Jesus is now (Heb 4:3). And so you are converted from a lifestyle of condemnation to a lifestyle of freedom; that is the promise of God and work of the Holy Spirit (Jhn 3:36). Our mission is clear, tell the world, and hope they hear (Luk 2:10-11).


How To Be Perfect

When We Sin By Our Vote For Biden Or Trump In 2020

The question is not a matter of *if* we sin, but when? for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Rom 3:23). If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us (1 Jn 1:10). Not one person of sound mind is ignorant of sin. Have you watched the conventions? We’ve nominated sinners up in this House! The heck is going on! Who do you think is going to rule the land for the next four years?

POWER OF SIN

Who’s it going to be?! Biden or Trump for 2020?! We’ll soon find out in a couple months. Oh yes, you’re right, I thought the same… “This ought to be interesting!”. It’s quite a choice deciding between the lesser of two evils; that idea should not be perceived as a slight against the character of Biden or Trump—because all of America’s citizens are on trial (myself included). Or… does the Voter not know that their vote is a portal to their identity? And so when the ‘lot’ falls on either the Democratic Party or the Republican Party, it will be due at the hand of your endorsement; we the people is more like we the demon possessing the condition of our White House or “home” to our governing administration. Or… perhaps you are an American citizen who has already voted due the immediately present media harbingers of power? If so… you’ve handed over the birthright of your soul long before there was even a choice you thought otherwise to consider.

Can you perceive the “call to arms”? Peoples defenses conjuring like it’s time for war! You’ve seen the riots lootings and shootings; that at the very least should cause pause, rampant emotions are the reason our country is in the face of civil war. And for radical change to happen we need to talk about the sin of our decisions, specifically—the decision to vote.

If you’re a Christian then your vote was cast at your conversion because we don’t serve two masters (Mat 6:24, Luk 16:13)! I believe the Christians in America that vote are actually voting for a prayer, the coming of Jesus Christ (Rev 22:20); because when a Christian wakes up to reality of His return, it shakes you to the core because only your faith remains intact when He does (1Jo 5:4). The people of God are born again to the purpose of serving the ministry of reconciliation (2Co 5:19), not to vote for Roman whoops—I mean the United States of America’s agenda into power. We the Christian people all throughout the continents, although divided, know the teaching of Christ and it’s time to wake up! The American dream for liberty means well, but does not deliver anyone from their sin because it’s to busy endorsing it… The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; (1 Co 15:56). Do we not fear God?

God our Father has disciplined us to understand the Word of God all the while we trample it underfoot by our allegiance to a government that does not teach true liberty in Jesus Christ (Heb 10:29). Sin is not the law governed by America nor of any other nation than that of Israel, until Christ in the flesh on the cross that gave us the power of deliverance made available to all the world (Jhn 3:16). but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Co 15:57).

RIGHT TO FREEDOM

Did you read that verse closely? but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Co 15:57). So who gives us the victory over the sting of death? God does! How does God give us the victory? but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Co 15:57). What does”…through our Lord…” mean? The Holy Spirit of God is given through your believing by taking part in eating the flesh and drinking the blood of Jesus Christ! That is your right to vote—your right to freedom! The old covenant of the old testament did not deliver anyone from their sin, meaning that no one can earn salvation by voting Biden or Trump! If any christian in their right mind is a true patriot of their Kingdom then they should live as an alien to this country because they’re free indeed. We don’t live as slaves to the misguided nature and condition of this world. We live as ambassadors sent from the Kingdom of God for Jesus Christ!

Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.—(2Co 5:17-21)

So why not choose rather, not to vote? Or is it that we’ve placed our faith in this worldly government for the provision of our soul? Why would us Christians expect anything different from a people so desperate for their rights; to chase their sexual appetites, to decide their gender, to fight for their color, to kill for their pride, to steal for their pleasure, to lie for their lust, and to what end when the self-proclaiming “christians” are in a relationship with the devil that confuses the truth for a lie? Why expect… Is it because of what I wrote at the start of this post? Not one person of sound mind is ignorant of sin. So then that excuses the timidity of our christian military, does it? Like when king Saul was in the face of the philistine giant (1Sa 17:11)? Do we not have the same Spirit of king David (1 Sa 17:26)? Don’t tell me the church still needs to be trained on how to be a shepherd in the face of a lion when we’ve already been anointed as king to meet the face of Goliath. We are the rock in the sling, so ummm… let’s fly! Let’s go! Come on Church! What do you want from me?—no but seriously… It’s time.

Weigh The Meaning Of Value In The Balance

QUESTIONING VALUE

I’ve been thinking A LOT about the significance of “value” for a few weeks now… “what does it mean? How is it defined? When I wake up and decide to drink some water, take in sustenance; I don’t naturally think to myself… “why am I doing this?”. I just do it. But thinking about it now, it feels as though I’m a slave to this…“value system. Things just don’t add up. “Is this our purpose in life?” Wake up and use the restroom, drink water, eat food, calculate your contribution to life and go to work. “Where is the value?”, I wonder. I’ve decided to detach myself from what I think the meaning of value is in the world and take on a different approach. “What if I choose to go to work without earning money?” The idea is to work as though I wasn’t going to receive a paycheck, that may sound stupid but in principle, it’s not. Money is not God, it is a necessary tool of prerogative for not offending the world governed by such a value system (as though it is God). Let me explain.

In the gospel according to Matthew 17:24-27; my understanding from research is that the temple tax collectors came to Capernaum and confronted Peter about Jesus paying the temple tax (that apart from the priests every Jew 20 years and above was required to pay) which is basically contributing to the upkeep of the temple (where God dwells). And seeing how Jesus and the apostles were not considered priests of the temple, they too were required to pay this tax according to the custom of old testament law. However, let’s investigate what Jesus says and does about this temple tax collection considering how Jesus is actually, the ultimate Priest. The power of the priest is found in virtue, not money. Observe…

24 When they came to Capernaum, those who collected the two-drachma tax came to Peter and said, “Does your teacher not pay the two-drachma tax?” 25 He *said, “Yes.” And when he came into the house, Jesus spoke to him first, saying, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do the kings of the earth collect customs or poll-tax, from their sons or from strangers?” 26 When Peter said, “From strangers,” Jesus said to him, “Then the sons are exempt. 27 However, so that we do not offend them, go to the sea and throw in a hook, and take the first fish that comes up; and when you open its mouth, you will find a shekel. Take that and give it to them for you and Me.”

Now according to google and the coinmill converter, a shekel today is worth 0.29 cents of the United States Dollar. There is so much I want to dive into with this idea of currency, but what fascinates me presently is the measure of value exchange between the Israelite’s and their temple priests collecting this two-drachma tax at that time. According to my research—specifically amazing discoveries—in Exodus 30 and Numbers 3 we find the reason for this contribution to the temple.

11 The LORD also spoke to Moses, saying, 12 “When you take a census of the sons of Israel to number them, then each one of them shall give a ransom for himself to the LORD, when you number them, so that there will be no plague among them when you number them. 13 This is what everyone who is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a contribution to the LORD. 14 Everyone who is numbered, from twenty years old and over, shall give the contribution to the LORD.(Exodus 30:11-14)

44 Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 45 “Take the Levites instead of all the firstborn among the sons of Israel and the cattle of the Levites. And the Levites shall be Mine; I am the LORD. 46 For the ransom of the 273 of the firstborn of the sons of Israel who are in excess beyond the Levites, 47 you shall take five shekels apiece, per head; you shall take them in terms of the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), 48 and give the money, the ransom of those who are in excess among them, to Aaron and to his sons.” (Numbers 3:44-48)

But why did Jesus make a point to question Peter about the collection of customs? Who are the kings of the earth? And why did Jesus say that the sons are exempt? It sounds to me like Jesus is clarifying a point for Peter to recall later. Are all Israelites exempt from such customs? The answer is yes, but it was not time for that answer to come into fruition yet. The next phrase from Jesus is of most importance because it gives revelation to the meaning of value. “However, so that we do not offend them…“, but why? Why not offend these collectors with the truth about the pointlessness of this contribution?

Can This Post Feed 5,000?

Featured photo: The Chosen  (Season 1 Episode 3)

Has there ever been a time in your life where you had food prepared and ready to go for work but woke up late? You just left it thinking by some hope of providence, you’ll get fed. And it just so happened the boss brought donuts just for you to have an excuse to break that diet and get through the work day!

Or perhaps there was a time in your life where food was expected, but not given? Your friends invite you over for steak, you get there… no steak. What the heck! Turns out no one really cared about your appetite, and the lack of consideration is quite discouraging so you plot to kill em all.

Not really. But still! Not only is that plot idea relevant to this post, It’s time for some new friends, don’t you think? because true friends will treat you like a king or queen. And this post is about to become your friend.

BECAUSE YOU ARE A KING QUEEN!

Alright friend, let me take you back in time! lets hit the rewind from A.D. 2020 to peer into the time of A.D. 27 through A.D. 34! Who and what are you thinking about when this history comes to mind? For me… it’s about Jesus and what he did!

There was a time in history that maybe you’ve heard of? An event where 5,000 people went hungry for food after watching and following a man capable of doing miraculous signs. They of course knew this man as Jesus of Nazareth, until this event nearly changed everything!

They didn’t have vehicles back then so Jesus walked to the other side of the Sea of Galilee (or Tiberias) up on this mountain, and there He sat down with His disciples. See now… Jesus knew these people needed to eat and had a plan to feed them, but how in the world was he about to feed 5,000?

Even his disciple Philip was like, yo, “Two hundred denarii worth of bread is not sufficient for them” to even receive a little. But the point of all this was to concern themselves for the people, to feel and have compassion for these people traveling to see and experience these miraculous signs that Jesus is doing.

The reason for these signs is much more than just proof that Jesus is the Messiah, but an expectation for the King of the Jews.

Now that the hearts of the disciples were focused on compassion for these people in response to Jesus’s’ prompting question, “Where are we to buy bread, so that these may eat?”. Thankfully one of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, *said to Him,  “There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are these for so many people?” That’s like me asking…

What is this post for so many people?

Jesus knew what he was about to do and how it was going to reveal to compel their idea to make Jesus the King of the Jews, but not for the reason the Jews anticipated… which was to deliver them from the oppression of Roman governance.

So as you can see, this “lad”… had a significant role to play in bringing the 5 loaves and 2 fish because it is through this selfless act of provision that the miracle of feeding 5,000 persuades the crowd to force Jesus into becoming the King that delivers them. But that is not the reason Jesus was to become King, do you know what that reason was?

You might want to sit down for this… considering that was the instruction of Jesus at that time for all these people, “Have the people sit down.”. Gaw… I love this, because in it we can recognizing the work of God! This act of communion bears so much meaning and symbolism to the body of Jesus being broken on the cross… but we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

Jesus is already the King, but desires these people, his inheritance, the chosen of God to share in His Kingship. Behold Israel! For salvation is from the Jews! But because these chosen people so strongly desired deliverance from Roman oppression, missed the reality of their own sin.

And so this Prophet who is to come into the world withdrew himself from these people to be alone on this mountain. He was like, “yo Pops, I need some new friends up in this house, these people aren’t cuttin-it”. No… of course he didn’t say that, it was more like, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.”

So now here comes the question, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?”! Can you imagine eating your favorite donut without the side affects forever free, or how about a nice juicy steak for free whenever your appetite calls for it? I think that’s what these people had in mind, like yo…

FREE FOOD FOREVER!

But that wasn’t what Jesus was communicating and to their defense, they didn’t have a personal relationship with God through the seal of the Holy Spirit at that time to understand God intimately. That is what it meant to follow and believe in Jesus, to understand the heart and mind of God. But they just wanted the ability to have free food.

So then what is the answer to that question, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” Well… it’s this, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.” It’s quite simple really, believe in Jesus Christ. If you do believe, you’ll find that breaking open your Bible to John chapter 6 is where your spiritual meal is waiting.

LET’S EAT! I’M FAMISHED!

labelled by “labellers”

Encouragement to believers labelled by “Labellers”


As I travel through the land of the internet in the work of an Evangelist… I’ve come across some very disturbing insights. There are certain believers within group discussions on Facebook regarding soteriology (“doctrine of salvation”) such as Calvinism and Arminianism which quickly become destructive in nature because of a spiritual condition known as “ego”.

Now… I’m picking on “Calvi’s” and “Armini’s” for the sake of exposing the spiritual issue (ego), if you’re reading this and happen to identify with either of these please know that I’m not telling you ‘it’s wrong to identify as a calvinist or arminianist’. I believe there to be a spiritual discourse between predestination and freewill out of genuine concern for correct teaching on the doctrine of God—based on my observations.

However, it’s come to my attention by associating myself in these two groups—


  • Soteriology 101 Discussion

  • Soteriology 201


—That there is also a “label calling” issue. I’m guilty of this as well, but am learning more and more the sin that is involved. An example would be something like this …

Nathan: Richard, that view of scripture classifies you under  __________ and that is where you’re in error, because  __________ is false doctrine and if you continue in that view you’re continuing in unrepentant sin.

Richard: Nathan, that’s unfair for you to “classify” or label me as __________ when I didn’t claim such and such _________. Just because you hold to  __________ and _________ view does not mean that view is superior to my understanding which according to you is a continuation of “unrepentant sin”… (meaning….not truly saved?).

And let the arguing begin. This arguing did not occur because of the creation of the group, it’s an issue of the heart… a condition of sin that needs looking into because it’s a cancer that influences the mind, “ego”. We need to stop doing this, there is a wise and constructive way to handle our language to edify the Body of Christ (individual members of the same faith in Jesus).

I pray this message finds you well and with peace. If you happen to be a part of the two group discussions listed above (on Facebook), please don’t leave the group… on the contrary, join the group and love on people with the example of Jesus Christ. And if you’re just learning about these groups, I encourage you to join in on the discussions.

If the environment to the discussion groups you’re part of is too toxic, then I encourage you to join this group Soteriology | Salvational Engineering! And if you’re young or old in the christian faith, even of a different faith, or don’t have a faith , you’re invited to that group! Let’s discuss and debate our belief systems in a healthy constructive manner.

In love,

Nathan Dooley


When I First Read The Gospel | 2

You know, thinking back on it, I think I was baptized 4 times. But the point is I’d gone through the appropriate steps to be certified “Christian”. I remember making enough sense of the gospel to wonder “what’s the point of my education” if this life is meant to end for another to begin; it was more important for me to understand life after death than high school, but the reality of this life hits pretty hard when gravity throws a hook to the face a few times.

Next thing I know I’m well on my way in life with a good job working to get a “B” license at a waste water treatment plant in Wichita Fall Tx hoping to have a family of my own. I was ready baby, lets do it! At least, that was the appearance. The truth was, I wasn’t well on my way, issues within my personal life dealing with family consumed me. I was really ready for two things, death and taxes, okay not taxes, but was definitely ready to bounce up out of this life because no miracle of salvation happens for me. I didn’t experience the gift of power that would liberate me from sin and transform my life. I just got confused by what was expected of me by people who weren’t even practicing what they preached!

One thing did not change…my curiosity about the gospel of Jesus Christ. Somehow I knew it wasn’t this book’s fault for all the bad that’s happened, so one day in my early 20ies living in a duplex apartment with my step-brother, read through the gospels for myself and won’t forget the “ahhhh” moments as I read. But here is the thing, I’d already gone through what technically makes me “Christian”. Why was I now experiencing these “ahhhh” moments?

Oh just wait, this gets good!

These “ahhhh” moments reflected my heart ready to receive revelations for life change like seeds planted in fertile soil ready to germinate. But guess what, the testing of my faith began and it was ugly. There was opportunity after opportunity to experience so many different kinds of pleasures in the name of christianity because I didn’t understand the birth of my faith. It’s like, like a baby not understanding why he or she is screaming until milk shuts em the hell up [don’t tell me you hadn’t thought it you sinner] (humor recalibrated). But I didn’t have anyone to give me milk, so due to misunderstanding am ready to exit this life time and time again. Malnourished faith left me vulnerable to sin and desire for exiting life questioning my salvation.

While the testing of my faith is not over and am eating meat with my milk now, have the environment needed to grow and understand my service in this life. My service is you. You need to understand your salvation in Jesus Christ because if you don’t believe in God’s plan for salvation, you’ll find yourself ashamed that you didn’t listen nor seek after your own salvation given in believing the gospel of Jesus Christ. Do you believe in a life guards ability to save a person drowning? Do you have respect for life guards on duty prepared to save everyone willing to be saved? Then have respect for God by giving Him your full attention in reading the gospel of Jesus Christ  because He has saved you already if you’ll believe with faith.

When I First Read The Gospel | 1

I’d grown up in church and heard the gospel. I would say that a fearful understanding of hell occurred around the age of 8 and desired salvation every night asking Jesus into my heart just to make sure I was accounted for, because the sensation of burning alive felt real as the enlightenment of truth met my soul.

But was I saved?

I’ve been baptized 3 times just to make sure the appropriate steps were made for receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit. I was baptized by two pastors one being my stepdad; to publicize my proclamation of faith, and last exclusively by my wife in the bathtub; turned out she was just trying to kill me, talk about literal death to resurrection (totally kidding).

But do I have the gift?


to be continued…