I put Satan on notice a long, long time ago that he might knock me flat on my face a thousand times, but that I would get back up. And I have ALWAYS gotten back up. Actually, I should have said, “I’ll bow down again,” meaning I would again bow before the throne of the Most High, my Creator, and re-commit my way unto Him. I have kept that promise.
I revel in the fact that I am now 74 years old. I have attained that stated threescore and ten spoken of by Moses in Psalm 90:10, one of the few Psalms penned by Moses. That, of course, would mean I passed the halfway point a long time ago. Most of the grains of sand are in the bottom of the hourglass now. But the glass is fogged and the grains are so small, it is impossible to tell the number that remain in the top of the hourglass. But the Spirit of my Master in many ways and circumstances assures me that there are, indeed, several grains still remaining.
I have never had a vision, nor have I ever heard an “otherworldly” voice, but my Creator has spoken to me through His sacred Word ten thousand times. I have had several dreams that I am content and sure were of divine origin, prompted by the Lord or one of His messengers. I have had countless answers to specific prayers, often within minutes or hours of uttering the prayer. My life has been undeniably preserved on many occasions. I have been divinely healed on many occasions down through the years. (In May of 2016 I was diagnosed with prostate cancer). I have been rescued from drowning in the Kentucky River. I have survived an automobile wreck that the difference of one split second, or one or two miles per hour vehicle speed would have resulted in my instant death. I have been rushed to the hospital in the back of a speeding ambulance in respiratory distress. And I could go on and on and on, relating similar instances.
“Why me, Lord?” I have often asked. Why preserve my life with a divine hand of deliverance via angel or some other inscrutable method. I can’t sing. I play the keyboard in a mediocre fashion. I have brought horrible reproach upon your name and cause dozens of times. I have no family depending upon me for their continued well-being or survival. Why me, Lord? Why me? You have no idea the umbrella of protection that has been over me for many decades. It is as if God had said long ago regarding yours truly, “I’ll let you stray, yes, time and again. But I will suffer no man to do you harm. Your life I give to you as a prey. You are bought with a price. You are mine!”
I would say I look forward to tomorrow with eager anticipation, but I have had too many dreams – some I would call nightmares – wherein I have been shown this great nation’s days of peace and prosperity are numbered. I fear that someday all too soon we will look back on 2016 as one of the most peaceful, uneventful years this nation ever experienced, for we have been weighed In the balances of the Most High and found wanting.
I am merely one of many objects of God’s grace. Grace is not merited. It is not deserved. It is poured out on one whose sins are as scarlet, whose iniquities are red like crimson. To such human objects of His grace, God says: “You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you…..”
The process of sanctification has been a very slow process in my life. But I have found that with each passing decade there have been strides. Progress has been made. But, as the poet once put it, “I have many promises to keep, and many miles to go before I sleep.”
The PURPOSE of my existence is no different from your own, whomever my reader might be. We are all created to be conformed to the image of our Elder Brother and Lord and Savior Jesus Christ IN THIS LIFE!!! That’s WHY you were born. It is why I was born. It is the reason time and matter were brought into being by the Most High. Those two properties (time and matter) have afforded our Creator with what He deemed He needed in order to fulfill His desire when He said long ago, “Let us make man in OUR image and after OUR likeness!” Creation is a two-step, or two-fold process. First the physical, then the spiritual. Physical creation of the individual takes roughly nine months. Spiritual creation, bringing forth the new personality in Jesus Christ takes a lifetime. To live long enough to discern this eternal truth is to live long enough to be of real service to the Most High.
Although the Lord might not have had control of my early years, even the first few decades of my life, He DOES have full and final control of my seventies and beyond should He be so gracious as to allow me to attain to great age as He has so blessed some members of my extended family. (I have an aunt who is ninety-nine years old. Her sister, another one of my aunts died very recently at age ninety-six!)
Although I live alone, I am never lonely as the Spirit of the Lord communes with me daily – almost on a continual basis. Several times a day I feel His promptings to turn off the television, or cease whatever pursuit I might be on at the time, and to listen to His voice. That voice comes to me through the Holy Scriptures. I ever have a Bible close at hand that I can open up and allow His Spirit to guide me to the passage or passages through which He desires to speak with me. Oftentimes what He gives me is for another, and I find myself sitting at the keyboard of this computer typing the words that His Spirit pours into my mind.
No, I have never HEARD a voice other than the voices of fellow human beings. Nor have I ever been given a vision. Such communication I believe is reserved for God’s prophets. I do believe such exists, though. Occasionally He speaks to me through a dream, but most always, I would say 99% of the time, He speaks to me through His Word, and when I hear that “voice” it is as clear as a bell and unmistakably the voice of the Lord. Generally, He does this by bringing to my mind a passage of scripture, and then another, and another, and another, tying them together in such a way that full and complete understanding comes just as though all of the passages of scripture to which I have turned were joined together in one great paragraph!
As scripture so clearly affirms, our Lord is “a revealer of secrets.” “He reveals the deep and secret things: He knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with Him.” This is the God Daniel knew, and this is the God I have thankfully come to know. (See Daniel 2:22, 28-29 and 47).
I have written many many articles over the years, many of them dealing with what some would call “problem” scriptures. The Lord has graciously given me understanding in many passages that others seem to have difficulty understanding. This understanding came only after the Holy Spirit inspired me to read the entirety of God’s Word, Genesis 1:1 to Revelation 22:21 many, many times, including all the census chapters and begats. (When I say many, many times I mean literally dozens and dozens of times. No speed reading, but careful reading and contemplation of verse after verse, often referring to various lexicons, a Jewish Bible and a couple of Greek-English interlinear New Testaments).
If the Lord continues my life, I will be seventy-five this coming November. I still work six days a week, doing janitorial work for a couple of companies in the Troy-Dayton area. I use the pay therefrom, plus a small social security pension, to pay for the ink cartridges, paper, envelopes, stamps, etc. to support this tiny ministry of the printed word, sending my articles to well over two hundred pastors and Bible teachers throughout the United States and three foreign countries (Peru, Chile and England). I also send out mini-articles via Email and blog the same on my Internet website, www.thebiblicalprophets.com.
This God of glory declares: “I change not!” He is, indeed, the same yesterday, today and forever! And He declares, “You will seek me and you will find me when you search for me with all your heart.” But the sad truth is that few do so. They might give Him lip service and sometimes turn a thought or two toward God and His counsel from time to time and, therefore, find Him quite distant, quite intangible, a mysterious being that seems to have little if no real interaction with His creation. Yet He cries out, “Behold me, behold me,” to those whom He has chosen. (See Malachi 3:6; Hebrews 13:8; Jeremiah 29:13 and Isaiah 65:1).
I have already mentioned how my Creator – our Creator, the Creator of all that exists – had intervened on several occasions, sparing my life. It was only after several such astounding incidents that it dawned on me that these were not coincidences as a coincidence happens infrequently, not time and again. That is what makes the event a coincidence. I could go on and on recounting experiences wherein in reflection I realized that the Most High had moved in order to preserve my life. I now relate a few more:
Years ago, while driving in Tennessee late at night, I took an entry ramp onto an interstate highway and drove on that highway for a mile, or two when it dawned on me that I had not seen any traffic ahead of me, nor, as I looked in my rearview mirror, could I see any traffic behind me. I then realized that I had not seen a single vehicle in the opposite lanes of traffic. I thought this was odd as I was near a major Tennessee city at the time and was certain, even though the hour was late, that there should indeed be other vehicles on the roadway. Something (I believe an angel or God’s Spirit, though I do not know this) impressed upon me to stop the car immediately. I did so, bringing the car to a rather sudden halt. As I said, there was no traffic In front of or behind me, so no one was endangered by my stopping so suddenly in the middle of an interstate highway. As I gazed out my front windshield, I was staggered to realize that the highway ended but 20 to 30 yards in front of my car. An overpass had not yet been constructed. Had I driven one minute longer I would have sailed off into space, crashing on to a completed highway below. I immediately turned the car around, driving back in the same lanes as there was no traffic on this unfinished roadway. As I got back to the entry ramp I had used I noticed that vandals, or the wind perhaps, had removed the orange barrels blocking the entryway. I then drove away on another road. (I cannot now recall whether I stopped and replaced a barrel or two. I hope I did).
Those who know my personal history know that for many years I lived outside the law and that I abused drugs, including marijuana, cocaine, LSD and various barbiturates. On one occasion, while being injected with a liquid barbiturate, too much was given and I immediately lost consciousness and would certainly have died had not the “friend” removed the needle from my arm and had another “friend” assist him in pulling me up out of the chair I was sitting in and walked, dragged, pulled me about until the circulating blood brought me back to consciousness. And, as I stated in my previous letter, I could go on and on detailing time and again when I now have no doubt my Creator moved to preserve my life. And, whenever I think of the many instances wherein it is apparent my life was quite obviously spared and spared miraculously, this scripture comes to my mind: “For you see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called (called into a relationship with the Most High through a relationship with His Son Jesus Christ). But God has chosen THE FOOLISH THINGS (describes me to a tee) of the world to confound the wise and God has chosen the weak things of the world (me again) to confound the things which are mighty. And base things of the world (yours truly once more), and things which are despised (yep, ditto), has God chosen, yes, and things which are not (are of no reputation, just big zeros – me again), to bring to nought things that are (of reputation, honor, etc.)” (See I Corinthians 1:26-28).
When we make contact with the Eternal God of this universe, and I mean real valid contact where we enter in to a living, valid, tangible relationship with Him, He then commits Himself to our eventual spiritual perfection. It is what is uppermost on His mind, driving Him on at white hot heat, at least as far as we, as individuals, are concerned. The apostle Paul speaks of this eloquently in his letter to the Ephesian brethren, “Unto EVERY ONE OF US is given grace (unmerited favor) according to the measure of the gift of Christ…for the perfecting of the saints…Till we ALL come…unto a perfect man, UNTO THE MEASURE OF THE STATURE OF THE FULLNESS OF CHRIST” (See Ephesians4:7-13).
With some of us, the Most High goes a step further not only forgiving us of our depravity and rebellion but then choosing to USE us in the here and now to further His kingdom always and ever respecting our free will – NEVER forcing us to go His way, or making us choose the righteous course over the way of the flesh. Therefore, some of us so forgiven and in the family of God, can find ourselves slipping back into sin! God must then discipline or chasten us in order to bring us back into submission to Him and His cause. Upon full submission and surrender to Him once again, He then begins to use us as He sees fit “as the gifts and calling of God are without repentance” (See Romans 11:29), that is, He doesn’t change His mind and write us off as sons and servants. The stupendous merits of our Savior’s shed blood is even applied to those sins committed after conversion once we have truly repented and turned back to God and His way.
God’s hand is still upon my life. He communicates with me quite continuously through His holy Word and, from time to time, in dreams. I have not the slightest fears regarding the end of my life, the process of death, and an eventual face-to-face meeting with our Lord. Indeed, I look forward to that hour with eager anticipation. It is WHY I was born! It is why YOU were born. You were NOT born to merely live a few decades, even nine or ten, and then pass into oblivion as the continuing circle of life proceeded without you. You were born to bear the image of your earthly parents temporarily as the image of your Creator was formed and fashioned in you through process of time – an image we are to bear throughout all eternity, yes, throughout all the ages to come.
The Spirit of the Living God impresses upon me daily that the Most High is definitely not through with me yet. Although some would call it wicked presumption, I am certain my earthly pilgrimage has not yet run its course. My service to the Most High is not complete. There is a door ahead of me I have yet to walk through. He will open the same at the proper moment and I will serve Him even further then.
I would again caution my reader: “It is written, ‘As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God, so that EVERY ONE OF US shall give account of himself to God’” (see Romans 14:12). Thank God, for those of us who have been forgiven our sins will be remembered no more. They have been removed from us as far as the east is from the west. Yes, even though those sins were red like crimson, though they were scarlet, now, through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are as white as snow. (See Isaiah 1:18; Psalm 103:12 and Hebrews 10:17).
This modern, neon-lit, technologically saturated world can be overpowering in its swift ability to overshadow and suppress the reality of the spirit world and the spiritual life. The physical is just that – physical. One can see it, hear it, feel it, sometimes even smell and taste it. Not so with the spiritual world. It comprises another dimension that can only be appreciated, or experienced, as one fully surrenders themselves to their Creator through surrender to the LORDship of Jesus Christ as it is by and through and for Him that all things were created! Those who fail to so surrender themselves are, as it were, on the outside looking in. The spirit world remains a nebulous, wispy, ethereal, intangible something that one must just accept by faith and hope for the best. Therefore, to them at least, death remains a scary matter. Of course, it is only natural to be a bit reticent concerning the unknown. I must admit I have never died before. I have come close on several occasions. But that’s just it! Much CAN be known about death and the spirit world if one is in fellowship with the Most High and will allow that Eternal Being to communicate to them through His Word.
Well, I didn’t intend that this become a teaching article. The Spirit prompted me to sit down at this keyboard and write, so I did. May I evermore move when the Spirit bids me do so. It’s about time that became my continuous mindset.
Keep your eyes and ears open regarding the Islamic world. Times, events and people are even now being jockeyed about so as to bring to pass many unfulfilled prophecies that MUST find fulfillment before the kingdoms of this world become the kingdoms of our God and His Christ. And before that moment arrives this world and its inhabitants are in for a very rough ride, and, believe me, that is a gross understatement. And, I assure you, the United States of America is not exempted from what lies ahead.
“The righteous perish, and no man lays it to heart, and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous are taken away from the evil to come” (See Isaiah 57:1).
May the God of all grace grant you that peace that surpasses all human comprehension is my prayer.
Christ’s servant (Galatians 1:10),