Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Myth of a Maintenance-Free Salvation




Hebrews 2:3

How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him;


The Myth of a “Maintenance Free” Salvation

People today are so careless with their salvation.  They neglect their salvation and expect it to be in perfect working order.   You must maintain your salvation for it to benefit you.  The “cares of life” are greater to some people than the “care of their salvation.”

Contrary to what “Once-Saved-Always-Saved” (OSAS) and Calvinist advocates teach, you can forfeit your salvation due to neglect.  There is great danger in telling people otherwise.  It is vastly important that we warn people of the dangers of neglect.  If you do not maintain your walk with God then you can be sure that you will find yourself lost in the end.

I spoke to a man some years back that I grew up with and attended church with when I was a youth.  I asked him about several of his brothers and he replied, “One does not go to church at all, and one goes sometimes.  Another one attends church with me when he does go.”  He seemed not bothered in the least by their flippant attitude about Church attendance and seemed to suggest to me that it was normal for Christians be that haphazard in service to God.  This is the way it is all over today!  People do not maintain a relationship with the Lord.  They attend Church meetings, read their Bible, and pray whenever, however, or if ever they want to.

Some years ago a couple purchased a spa (hot tub) at a business that I was working at.  They had the spa for one whole year and we never heard one word from them in that time.    Then they called said they needed a technician because the spa would not work anymore.  The spa was still under warranty so I was dispatched to determine what the problem was.  When I arrived I lifted the cover and was almost overwhelmed with the stench.  It was nasty and smelled like a sewer.  The only service this spa needed to get it back in good working order was a good cleaning.  During that year they had not cleaned the filters, had put no chemicals in it, did not run the clean cycle or perform any other maintenance on the spa.  The customer told me, “The only reason we bought this spa was because the salesman told us that it was ‘Maintenance Free’”.  These people had bought into the myth of something being “Maintenance Free”. 

Nothing in life, natural or spiritual, is Maintenance Free!  Everything must have attention.  If you neglect things they will breakdown and begin to fail.

1.                 Your relationship with God requires maintenance.

2.                 Your marriage requires maintenance.

3.                 Your friendships require maintenance.

4.                 Your home requires maintenance.

5.                 Your car requires maintenance.

6.                 Your pets require maintenance.

7.                 Your yard requires maintenance.

People today want the benefits of salvation without the bother of salvation.  They want the blessings, they want to go to Heaven, but they do not want to obey the Lord.  They do not want to pray.  They do not want to bother with going to Church and reading their Bible.  They have bought into the lie of the maintenance free salvation!

People today in the marketplace are looking for products that are either “No Maintenance” or “Low Maintenance.”  This will not work in the Spiritual realm!  Your salvation will cost you something to maintain!  It cost Jesus everything to purchase for us this great salvation – it cost His life.  If we are going to walk with Him then it will also cost us our lives.  We are instructed in scripture to, “Present your body unto me a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto me which is your reasonable service”.

Salesmen use the “No Maintenance” tactic as a selling feature.  Most of the preachers today are no better than a “Used Car Salesmen” making untrue and false claims to sell cars.  They fail to tell people that they are going to have to pray, read their Bible, go to Church meetings, give, sacrifice, fast, and walk in Holiness.  They do not tell the whole truth!  Half-truths are as bad as whole lies!  People buy into this false gospel and are soon disillusioned when they encounter their first bump in the road.  Their minds are filled with doubt and guilt and they cry out in frustration.  Instead of getting sound Biblical advice from a Godly minister they are further instructed in this myth that “sin is really not sin” to them anymore and they just need more greasy grace to carry them through. This is the kind of salvation that Joel Osteen is selling, and like a used car salesman he makes the claim to his followers that it is “Maintenance Free”> 

If people today treated their natural workplace like they did the things of God they would have been fired long ago!  They would not dare miss work without calling in to their boss but they will miss Church meetings anytime they want to.  They are never late to punch in at the time clock but they see no problem whatsoever in dragging into Church fifteen minutes late.  They go to their jobs and give 100% but when it comes to God they give as little as possible.

A maintenance free salvation is a myth!  If you are going to live for God then you are going to have to give your all to God!  If He is not God of all then He is not God at all!  If Jesus is not everything to you then He is nothing to you!

Preventative Maintenance

Preventative Maintenance is checking and caring for something of value so that it is always in good order.  Why is it that people understand this principle when it comes to their car or lawn mower but are completely clueless when it comes to their soul?  Spiritual Breakdowns occur when we neglect proper maintenance.  The cost of breakdowns (Hell) is much higher than the cost of Preventative Maintenance.  It is cheaper to change the oil than it is to change the motor (about $30 dollars for an oil change as opposed to $3,000 for a new motor)!

Every person that has ever backslid did so because they failed to maintain their salvation.  They may point their fingers at others and say, “I got out of Church because so-in-so hurt me” but that is a cop out!  The Bible tells us in James 1:14, “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.” 

Backsliding occurs more from what we do not do than from what we do.

James 4:17

Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.

The maintenance is in the doing!  The maintenance is in obeying.  The maintenance is in keeping His commandments and doing his will!

John 14:15

If ye love me, keep my commandments.

Neglect is failing to maintain.  Neglect is our fault, not God’s!  If we are lacking anything in our walk with the Lord then it is our fault and not God’s.     

High Maintenance Salvation

We have been given a “High Maintenance Salvation”.  I have heard people refer to their wife or girlfriend as being “High Maintenance”!  This simply means that in order to maintain a good relationship with her the man had to do a lot of extra things or spend a lot of extra money.  Folks, if you are going to have a good relationship with God then you are going to have to give Him your all!  That, my friend, is High Maintenance!

I thank the Lord for my wife and daughter!  When they go shopping they head for the markdown rack.  They are just at home in a Goodwill Store as they are in J. C. Penny.  While these traits are admirable in the natural, we have to know that in the spiritual our God will not take any cast offs!  He wants the best!  In the Old Testament when a lamb was brought to God for sacrifice it had to be the best – if it was inferior then God would reject it.  That is high maintenance!

How are we going to escape God’s wrath and judgment if we neglect this great salvation?

Jesus pardoned the Adulterous woman and then gave her the maintenance program: “Go and sin no more.”  This was her responsibility!  She had to maintain what the Lord did for her that day.

Jesus healed a man that was sick for 38 years then later He saw him and told him this in John 5:14 “Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.”

Jesus gave him the maintenance program, “Sin no more” and if he failed to maintain what Jesus has done for him then Jesus told him the results Wouldl be, “lest a worse thing come unto thee.”

Matthew 12:43-45

43When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none.

44Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.

45Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.

Jesus cleaned the House, but the owner did not perform the needed Maintenance and left it empty and now the devil and seven others have moved back in.  If we fail to do the maintenance required then we open ourselves up to a breakdown.  It is not enough to start on this journey – you must pick up your feet and keep on walking.  No one will make it if they do not fulfill their part.  “How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation?”  Not, “Reject so great a salvation” but “Neglect”!  Neglect will lead you to destruction just as surely as rejection will.

This great salvation that we enjoy cost Jesus everything to secure and is going to cost us everything to maintain!  There is no such thing as a maintenance-free salvation!  If you make it in the end it will be because you walked according to God’s Word.

Matthew 24:13

But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

Jesus gives all kinds of promises to the Overcomers.  Do you know who the Overcomers are?  They are people that keep up the maintenance on their salvation!

Revelation 2:7

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

Revelation 2:11

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.

Revelation 2:17

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.

Revelation 2:26

And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:

Revelation 3:5

He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.

Revelation 3:12

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

Revelation 3:21

To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

Revelation 21:7

He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

Needed Maintenance

Prayer- This is like breathing to the Believer!  If you stop breathing in only a few minutes you will die.  Prayer is ours to do.  God will not make us pray but He does bid us to the altar to pray.

Bible Study- This is our food and water!  A man can live without food for two to six weeks depending on his health, but can only live without water for three or four days.

Fellowship- We must be faithful to the assembling of the saints together.  Every Christian needs to be a part of a local Body of believers if at all possible.  This is where we fellowship with God’s people and are taught the Word of God.

Baptism in the Holy Ghost- Not only must we be filled with the Spirit but we must also be refilled with the Spirit.  The oil must be replenished as it is burned up.  The Baptism in the Holy Ghost is the plan of God for every Born Again Believer.

Giving- We must be givers.  We may not have a lot to give but we must give from the little that we do have.  If we can learn to give now with our little then God may entrust us with more.

Witnessing- The Bible teaches us to let our “light so shine before men”.  This is part of walking with God.

Holy Living- It is our responsibility to live holy lives before the world all around us.  It is our part to do. 

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Church in Peril


Lamentations 5:9

We gat our bread with the peril of our lives because of the sword of the wilderness.

2 Timothy 3:1

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

2 Corinthians 11:22-27

22 Are they Hebrews? so am I. Are they Israelites? so am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? so am I.

23 Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft.

24 Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.

25 Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;

26 In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;

27 In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

Definition of the Word “Peril”

Most standard dictionaries will give you these definitions of the word “Peril” as 1) A chance of harm, 2) Imminent danger, 3) Dangerous, 4) Deadly, and 5) To be in jeopardy. 

The definition of “Peril” certainly fits the world that we live in today.  Today there is much peril all around us.  The Bible makes it clear that the Church has always been in peril.

Examination of Our Texts

Jeremiah wrote the Book of Lamentations.  Lamentations is a poem of the hardships of the people of Israel.  In this poem Jeremiah reminds us that the nation of Israel had to search for food, “with the peril of our lives” while they traveled through the wilderness to the Promised Land.  The time of the Sojourn was a “Perilous Time”, it was a very dangerous time, where the lives of the people were constantly being threatened.

The Apostle Paul reminds us in his letter to Timothy that the Last Days would be “Perilous Times”.  The Last Days certainly have proven to be a dangerous time, and as time goes by it will only get more dangerous.

The Church is “A Damsel in Distress”

Literature, both past and present, is filled with many examples of the “Damsel in Distress”.  The Church is the “Damsel” of Christ.  We are His Bride. 

If we could see the “Peril” that the Church is in by comparing it to the literary references of modern times, we would see the Church tied up on a railroad track with a train barreling down the track.

Like Penelope of literature, we are in peril!  Our life is in jeopardy!  We are facing imminent danger! 

The train is racing toward us down the track!  We are being pushed towards the edge of the cliff!  The stalker is sneaking up behind us with a knife!  The finger is pulling the trigger!  The snake is slithering toward us!  The dog is about to bite!  We are being chased and a root is up ahead for us to trip on!  The sun is setting and it is getting dark!  The music is reaching a crescendo!  We are in peril!

What will we do?  We need to recognize the foremost perils that we face. We are in constant peril!  We are in danger!  At no time are we safe!  At all times we are in peril!

Our Foremost Perils

The Peril of Apostasy- We are facing the great danger of the false gospel.  False teachers, preachers, prophets, doctrines, bibles, churches, and even Christs abound.  There is much confusion over what to believe and where to go to church.  This is our single greatest threat.  There have been many that were once true that have been caught up in apostasy.  Apostasy is peeking into the windows of our churches!  Apostasy is stalking us!

Matthew 7:15

Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

The train is racing toward us down the track!  We are being pushed towards the edge of the cliff!  The stalker is sneaking up behind us with a knife!  The finger is pulling the trigger!  The snake is slithering toward us!  The dog is about to bite!  We are being chased and a root is up ahead for us to trip on!  The sun is setting and it is getting dark!  The music is reaching a crescendo!  We are in peril!

The Peril of Lukewarmness- This is another great peril.  People are losing their burning heart for God.  They are growing lukewarm and some are even cold.  You and I are facing this peril.  Lukewarmness is sneaking up on us!  Lukewarmness is creeping up on us!  Lukewarmness is lurking around the corner!


Matthew 24:12

And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

Revelation 3:16

So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

The train is racing toward us down the track!  We are being pushed towards the edge of the cliff!  The stalker is sneaking up behind us with a knife!  The finger is pulling the trigger!  The snake is slithering toward us!  The dog is about to bite!  We are being chased and a root is up ahead for us to trip on!  The sun is setting and it is getting dark!  The music is reaching a crescendo!  We are in peril!

The Peril of Selfishness- Selfishness is becoming caught up in what you want so much that you forget that there are others that have needs and feelings.  This is the ultimate expression of worldliness.  Selfishness is taking over when we do not care for the feelings of others, when we are not touched by compassion for those in need, when we lose our burden for the lost, and when we are not willing to give to help out others in need.  Selfishness is lurking in the dark and watching us!


Matthew 16:24

Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

The train is racing toward us down the track!  We are being pushed towards the edge of the cliff!  The stalker is sneaking up behind us with a knife!  The finger is pulling the trigger!  The snake is slithering toward us!  The dog is about to bite!  We are being chased and a root is up ahead for us to trip on!  The sun is setting and it is getting dark!  The music is reaching a crescendo!  We are in peril!

The Peril of Worldliness- Worldliness expresses itself in materialism, the love of money, fashion, music, sports, entertainment, and even our careers.  We must be careful because worldliness is stalking us.  When we become more concerned for the world than the Kingdom of God then we are worldly.  Worldliness is stalking us!


1 John 2:15

Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

The train is racing toward us down the track!  We are being pushed towards the edge of the cliff!  The stalker is sneaking up behind us with a knife!  The finger is pulling the trigger!  The snake is slithering toward us!  The dog is about to bite!  We are being chased and a root is up ahead for us to trip on!  The sun is setting and it is getting dark!  The music is reaching a crescendo!  We are in peril!

The Peril of Character- When I say character, I am referring to a crisis of character that we are facing today.  People today do not feel the need to be honest, to tell the truth, to treat others fairly, to be faithful to their marriages and families, and to be polite and respectful.  This crisis of character is stalking the Church as well!  We must be on guard!


Colossians 3:12-15

12 Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering;

13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.

14 And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.

15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.

The train is racing toward us down the track!  We are being pushed towards the edge of the cliff!  The stalker is sneaking up behind us with a knife!  The finger is pulling the trigger!  The snake is slithering toward us!  The dog is about to bite!  We are being chased and a root is up ahead for us to trip on!  The sun is setting and it is getting dark!  The music is reaching a crescendo!  We are in peril!

Our Hero Will Rescue Us from Peril

In all of the stories of peril there is always a hero that comes to the rescue the damsel right at the last minute.  We also have a hero!  Our hero will come to our rescue right on time!


Romans 8:35

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Jesus is our Hero!  He rescues us from the train!  He catches us when we fall from the cliff!  He apprehends the stalker with the knife!  He takes the bullet for us!  He puts his heel on the head of the snake!  He chases the dog away!  He is our hero!

Jesus is our Knight in Shinning Armor!  Jesus is our Super Hero!  We don’t need a Superman or a Batman!  We have Jesus!  He is our Super Hero!

In all of these Cliffhangers there is always a hero that comes swooping in at the last second and rescues the Damsel!

Penelope Pittstop will always be rescued by her hero.

Nell had her Dudley Do Right!

Lois Lane had her Superman!

Jane had her Tarzan.

Olive Oil was always rescued by Popeye.

Princess Aurora will be rescued by Prince Phillip.

Mary Jane is always rescued by Spider Man.

Walker Texas Ranger always rescued Alex at the last minute!

Our enemy may have that sinister laugh, but we will always get the last laugh!

We are in peril!  But we also have a Hero!  The Bible is the story of the triumph of Good over Evil!  Good conquers evil in the end!  Our hero will show up in time to rescue us!  “Someday our Prince will come!”  He will swoop down on a cloud to gather His Church.  In the Second Coming He will ride a White Horse!  He is our Knight in Shinning Armor!

Pentecostal Landmarks

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Dying Embers of an Undisciplined Life


Numbers 4:13

 And they shall take away the ashes from the altar, and spread a purple cloth thereon:

Numbers 19:10

And he that gathereth the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until the even: and it shall be unto the children of Israel, and unto the stranger that sojourneth among them, for a statute for ever.

Unclean Ashes on the Altar

Ashes are an unfortunate side effect of a fire.  Wherever there is a fire there will be ashes.  The fire burns the fuel and turns it into embers.  The embers are then reduced to ashes.  The ashes have no value!  They are useless as a fuel.  They do not warm anybody.  They are messy and hard to clean up.  They are unsightly.

When we lose our fire for God then we have no value to the Kingdom of God.  No one benefits from a Christian who “once” had the fire in their life.  Our benefit to others is provided by the fire!

Ashes are the “Memory of Fire” – they are the memories of a fire that once was.  In so many churches today the fire of revival, the fire of Pentecost, the fire of evangelism went our long ago and all that remains are ashes.  Today’s ashes were yesterday’s fire!

Made Unclean by the Ashes

God ordained that His offerings were to be burnt with fire.  Because of this ashes would soon collect on the altar.  God also ordained certain individuals to clean up this mess.  God said, “Take away the ashes from the altar.”  The person responsible for removing the ashes would then have to go through a purifying process.  He had to wash himself and his clothes and remain separated from others till the sun would go down.

In our churches we have to deal with these unclean ashes.  These ashes are people that contribute nothing to the fire of the Church.  They are present but they add nothing.  They are on the altar but they put out no heat.

It is impossible to deal with the unclean ashes without getting some of it upon you.  I have had to deal with the flesh!  If you are not careful it can stain your garments!  But deal with the flesh we must!  To fail to do so will bring nothing but cold deadness to our churches!

Growing up as a child we had a wood stove.  This is how we heated our home.  The process of keeping that fire going involved these steps:

1.                 Chopping & gathering firewood.

2.                 Splitting the large sections of wood into smaller sections.

3.                 Stacking for later use.

4.                 Stoking the fire with more fuel.

5.                 Emptying the ashes from the stove.

My brother and I never liked carrying out those ashes.  No matter how hard you tried the ashes always seemed to mark you, they left their stain.  It was an unpleasant task but a necessary task.  Once the ashes were removed from the wood stove then the fire would burn brighter, hotter, and give out more light.  If the ashes remained they would eventually smother the fire.

If you neglect to remove the ashes in our churches then eventually they smother the fire!  The fire in many churches has been smothered by fleshly, carnal, prideful, self-willed people.  Our refusal to deal with the carnality in the modern church has produced cold churches with little or no fire. 

Are You Embers, Ashes, or a Flame for God?

It takes discipline to keep a fire burning.  If we are going to keep a fire burning in our life then we must discipline ourselves.

I read a story about a man that had previously been attending services faithfully that stopped going to Church.  After a few weeks, the Pastor decided to visit the absent member.  It was cold evening, and the minister found the man home alone, sitting before a blazing fire.  Guessing the reason for his Pastor’s visit, the man welcomed him and led him to a big chair by the fireplace, and waited.  The minister made himself comfortable but said nothing.  In grave silence, he contemplated the play of the flames around the burning logs.  After a few minutes, he took the fire tongs, carefully picked up a brightly burning ember and placed it to one side of the hearth.  Then sat back in his chair, still silent.  The host watched all this in quiet fascination.  As the lone ember’s flamed diminished, there was a momentary glow, but then its fire was no more and it was cold and dead.  Not a word was spoken since the initial greetings.  But as the minister rose to leave, the host said, “Thank you so much for your visit – and especially for your fiery sermon.  I shall be in Church next Sunday.”  The man knew that he was that cold ember and repented.

Has your fire gone out?  Have you lost your burning desire for God’s Word?  Do you still burn to spend time with God in prayer?  Does the flame of love for your brothers and sisters still burn brightly?  Do you still burn to reach the lost in this world today?  Do you feel like David, “I was glad, very glad, when they said to me let us go to the house of the Lord today”?

The Dying Embers of an Undisciplined Life

Revival comes to ignite us again!  In order to get the fire to burn brightly God is going to have to remove the ashes of the flesh life that smothers the fire!  Paul wrote to Timothy and told him these words:

2 Timothy 1:6

Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands.

The Greek word for “stir up” is “anazopureo” which means “to rekindle”.  We must rekindle the fire in our lives!

Paul told Timothy that it could be accomplished “by the putting on of my hands.  Laying on of hands is an integral part of the Bible.  Throughout the Bible we see examples of hands being laid upon others and prayer being made.  God has not changed!  This is still God’s preferred method of impartation! 

Three are involved in this process: God, the intermediary vessel, and the receiving vessel.  The intermediary stands between God and the receiving vessel as God pours through to fill with his presence.

The reason the fire has went out in so many churches and in the lives of so many individual believers is a lack of discipline.  Discipline will get you up early in the morning to seek the face of God in prayer.  Discipline will drive you to study the Word of God.  Discipline will task us to assemble together with God’s people for “reproof, rebuke, and exhortation”. 

Undisciplined churches will eventually fill up with ashes!  Undisciplined lives will see the fire choked out of their relationship with God!  If we plan to keep the “Home fires burning” then we must take on the “Discipline of the Fire”!

Pastor-Revivalist Mark E. Herridge, Sr.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

My Testimony Briefly Stated

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Ecclesiastes 4:1

1 So I returned, and considered all the oppressions that are done under the sun: and behold the tears of such as were oppressed, and they had no comforter; and on the side of their oppressors there was power; but they had no comforter.

Lamentations 1:9

Her filthiness is in her skirts; she remembereth not her last end; therefore she came down wonderfully: she had no comforter. O LORD, behold my affliction: for the enemy hath magnified himself.

Lamentations 1:16

For these things I weep; mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water, because the comforter that should relieve my soul is far from me: my children are desolate, because the enemy prevailed. 

John 14:16

And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

John 14:26

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

John 15:26

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

John 16:7

Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

Uncomfortable Defined

God spoke this one word to me on March 13, 2010: “Uncomfortable”.  I began to think about this word and I thought of the “Comforter”  When we think of comfort we think of relaxing, resting, sleeping, napping, and ease.  All of these words lead us to PEACE.  We can be at peace because of the abiding presence of the Comforter.  The Holy Ghost will bring peace to the heart of the Believer.

Today there are many people that have rejected God and because of their rejection of God they by default have rejected the Holy Ghost, the Comforter.  They are Uncomfortable!  They are without a comforter!

To be “Uncomfortable” means this:

1.                 To be in pain.

2.                 To be in distress.

3.                 To be irritated.

4.                 To be ill at ease.

5.                 Stressful.

6.                 Uneasy.

7.                 Nervous.

8.                 Anxious.

When I read the definition of “Uncomfortable” it sounded like I was reading today’s headlines.  People today are anxious, nervous, distressed, irritated, agitated, stressed out, uneasy, and ill at ease.    Our society is Uncomfortable!

I opened up the Yahoo page and looked at the top headlines.  This is what they were on Sunday, March 14, 2010:

1.                 Pakistani jets pound Taliban hideouts on the Afghan border.

2.                 Officials: Pentagon shooter’s gun was from Memphis police.

3.                 Earthquake rattles buildings in Japan.

4.                 Storm leaves northeast soggy, windblown, and dark.

5.                 Probe questions credibility of runaway Prius story.

6.                 Tips to ease into daylight savings time – I read this article and it says “75 percent of Americans cite sleeping problems”.

Our society is Uncomfortable!  This world is Uncomfortable!

Look at all of the things that are manufactured to make people comfortable:

1.                 Sealy Posturpedic mattress advertises that they can make you comfortable.

2.                 Tempur Pedic mattress to help those that cannot get comfortable.

3.                 Sleep Number Bed to help the uncomfortable.

4.                 Chiropractor for all of the aches and pains of discomfort.

5.                 Now at many malls you will find Massage Therapists.  Why?  Because people are stressed out!

6.                 I saw a Massage chair at the mall so I put my money in the slot and sat down.  Believe me it did not make me comfortable!

People are “Uncomfortable” because they are out of fellowship with God!  There are no mattresses that can soothe them.  There are not enough chiropractors, doctors, psychologists, or sleep therapists to help us with our problem.  The solution is not natural but supernatural.  We must come back to the “Comforter”!  He will bring us comfort in this uncomfortable world.

Who is the Holy Ghost?

He is the Holy Ghost.

He is the Holy Spirit.

He is the Spirit of God.

The Spirit of Truth.

The Spirit of the Father.

The Spirit of Christ.

The Spirit of Jesus.

The Spirit of the Lord.

The Spirit of the Living God.

The Spirit of Life.

The Spirit of Holiness.

The Spirit of Fire.

The Spirit of Wisdom.

The Spirit of Understanding.

The Spirit of Power.

The Spirit of Knowledge.

The Spirit of Grace.

The Spirit of Glory.

The Spirit of Adoption.

The Spirit of Promise.

The Spirit of Faith.

The Oil of Joy for mourning.

The Comforter.

The Baptizer.

The Advocate.

The Paraclete.

The Breath of God.

The Eternal Spirit.

The Seal of the Believer.

The Gift of God.

The Anointing.

The Mind of Christ.

The Spirit of the Sound Mind.

The Comforter

In John 14:16 Jesus promised the Church before he went away that he would send “Another Comforter” and that he would abide with us forever.

We, in the Pentecostal Church, know exactly what Jesus means when he promised this.  We know that this is the Holy Ghost that we received initially in Baptism – He abides in us!  The Holy Ghost is our Comforter.

The word “Comforter” used here in the Bible is the Greek word, “Parakletos” (Strong’s 3875) and it means “Intercessor, Consoler, Advocate, and Comforter”.  One interpretation of this word is “One who walks alongside”.  We know that the Holy Ghost is our “Intercessor”.  He walks alongside us, He lives inside of us, and he comforts us, he consoles us, he leads us into all truth.  The Holy Ghost is our Paraclete!

Jesus promised the coming of the Holy Ghost to His disciples and to each generation of believers to follow.  The disciples at that time were sorrowful every time Jesus told them he would be leaving.  Jesus made it clear to them that he was leaving but he was not going to leave them without a comforter.  He promised that the Holy Ghost would come to fill His place on this earth.  This is exactly what has happened!  The Holy Ghost has essentially filled in for Christ until his return.

What does the Holy Ghost do?  

He fills us.  

He thrills us.  

He baptizes us.  

He abides with us and in us.  

He leads us into all truth.  

He takes the things of Christ and reveals them to us.

He reveals things to come

He shows us our weakness

He endues us with POWER

He comforts us

He delivers us from temptation

He gives us a victorious walk

He develops the fruit of the Spirit in our lives

He gives us the gifts of the Spirit

He teaches us to worship Christ

He leads our worship

He calls men and women to the ministry

He anoints men and women to preach & teach

He blesses us

He gives us boldness to witness for Christ

He helps us to overcome sin

He gives us the victory over the Devil

He supernaturally charges our faith

He builds up the Body of Christ

He prays through us

He helpeth our infirmities

He leads us to travail

He gives us a burden for those around us

He teaches us all things

He speaks through us

He gives us dreams and visions

He abides with us

He sheds the love of God abroad in our hearts

He builds up my faith

He touches us with fire

He adds feelings to our faith

He calls us to the House of God

He moves me to prayer

He opens up my understanding to the Word of God

He helps me to crucify the flesh

He makes me long for Heaven

The Solution to Being “Uncomfortable”

I cannot leave you without an answer.  People do not have to be uncomfortable.  The Comforter has come!  The Holy Ghost from Heaven is the Father’s promise given.  We must “spread the tidings round wherever men are found” that the Comforter has come.

The Holy Ghost will take that anxious, nervous, agitated, stressed-out, train-wreck of a person and bring PEACE to their life!  

We live in a stressful world but we are walking with the COMFORTER on the inside of us and we do not have to be stressed out!  I have peace in the midst of the storm!  Why?  Because, “He abides, He abides, the Comforter abides with me.  I’m rejoicing night and day as I walk the narrow way.  The comforter abides with me.”

Today, if you are anxious you need a good refilling of the Holy Ghost.  Today, if you are stressed out you need a good filling of the Holy Ghost.  Today, if you are irritated you need a good refilling of the Holy Ghost!  If things are bothering you, if people are bothering you then you need a good Baptism in the Holy Ghost!

The Holy Spirit will change the uncomfortable to the comfortable for He is the Comforter.  The Comforter has come!

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