Cloaked  

“…The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.” ~ 1 John 1:7 (KJV) However, that does not mean putting the Lord’s name on profane things will make them holy. The Pharisees wearing a tallit (prayer shawl) did not make them righteous in the Lord’s sight; they were still a brood of vipers (Matthew 23). Similarly, there are many Gentiles who have adopted the use of a tallit in today’s age, yet they are like whitewashed tombs that are full of uncleanliness. There is no substitute for true repentance and holiness; God sees beneath every cloak. Now, with regard to mixing the holy and the profane, let no one deceive you, there is no such thing as:

  • “Christian yoga”
  • Making an adult film or “twerking” for the glorification of Christ
  • Telling lies in the name of Jesus
  • Practicing Christian magic or witchcraft

Lest not forget:

  • ‘No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.’ ~ Jesus (Matthew 6:24 KJV)

 

  • Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils. Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than He? All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.” ~ 1 Corinthians 10:21-23 (KJV)

 

  • “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness?And what concord hath Christ with Belial? Or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, ‘I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate’, saith the Lord, ‘and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and daughters’, saith the Lord Almighty.” ~ 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 (KJV)

 

  • ‘I AM theLord: that is My name: and My glory will I not give to another, neither My praise to graven images.’ ~ Isaiah 42:8 (KJV)

 

  • “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.” ~ Ephesians 5:11 (KJV)

 

 

Holy Spirit Led
The gifts and fruit of the Holy Spirit IAW 1 Corinthians 12 and Galatians 5:22-23.
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You Are More Than Enough, When…  

You will be more than enough when you are with the right person, but you will never be enough when you are with the wrong person. When there is unrequited love, you can have a lot to offer and it still won’t be enough. Conversely, when the love is reciprocated, you can seemingly not have enough to offer and it will be more than enough for your beloved. Keep the following in mind about Elkanah, and which of his two wives he loved more:

“Now there was a certain man of Ramathaimzophim, of mount Ephraim, and his name was Elkanah, the son of Jeroham, the son of Elihu, the son of Tohu, the son of Zuph, an Ephrathite: and he had two wives; the name of the one was Hannah, and the name of the other Peninnah: and Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children. And this man went up out of his city yearly to worship and to sacrifice unto the Lord of hosts in Shiloh. And the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, the priests of the Lord, were there. And when the time was that Elkanah offered, he gave to Peninnah his wife, and to all her sons and her daughters, portions: But unto Hannah he gave a worthy portion; for he loved Hannah: but the Lord had shut up her womb. And her adversary also provoked her sore, for to make her fret, because the Lord had shut up her womb. And as he did so year by year, when she went up to the house of the Lord, so she provoked her; therefore she wept, and did not eat. Then said Elkanah her husband to her, ‘Hannah, why weepest thou? And why eatest thou not? And why is thy heart grieved? Am not I better to thee than ten sons?’” ~ 1 Samuel 1:1-8 (KJV)

You may already know that despite Hannah’s setback, the Lord was gracious to her and blessed her with five children. Hannah is the mother of Samuel the seer (1 Samuel 2:21). Conversely, there is another story with a similar theme, but it demonstrates the misery trying to pursue a relationship when there is unrequited love (see Genesis 29-30).

God, The Love of My Life (2)

 

 

The Jokes Are Over

Ironically, some comedians make people laugh yet they secretly struggle with depression that is masked by their smiles, sense of humor, and charisma. Similarly, many ministers who preach about being holy unto the Lord, struggle with “secret” sins that are masked by their titles, eloquence, and liturgical attire. Ministers are not immune to the devil’s fiery darts. In fact, they are frequently targeted because when a devil smites the shepherd it expects the sheep to scatter (Zechariah 13:7).

By the way, the terms shepherd and sheep are symbolic of the type of relationship. However, we are people and we need to look out for each other, and that includes the congregation looking out for the shepherd. Don’t hug your pastor on the way in or out of church without doctrinally confronting him about the smell of alcohol coming from his pores. In addition, do not remain silent or excuse any other verifiable bad behavior from the clergy (or fellow congregants). If you won’t confront the issues, at least stop partaking in them and get out of that environment (ministry). Would you drink water from a toilet bowl? If you answered no, which I hope you did, I hope you will not drink living waters from a known contaminated vessel (minister) either.

When the Lord asks a question, make no mistake about it, He already knows the answer. The Lord had warned Cain that sin was crouching at his door but he must rule over it, yet he killed his brother Abel. When the Lord asked Cain where his brother was, he retorted, ‘I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?’ ~ Genesis 4:9 (KJV) Cain soon found out that was the wrong answer. So please, look out for your brothers and sisters in Christ.

In closing, when confronting issues in the church, please keep the following in mind:

  • “Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses. Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.” ~ 1 Timothy 5:19-20 (KJV)

 

  • Jesus said,Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.’ ~ Matthew 18:15-17 (KJV)

Be your brother’s keeper because many Christians are fighting tremendous battles, alone. “For WE wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” ~ Ephesians 6:12 (KJV) Elijah, a prophet who could call down fire from heaven, was wrestling with the enemy and he felt so alone in the fight that he wanted to give up and die (1 Kings 19). Let US wrestle the enemy, together. As the saying goes, “united we stand, divided we fall” so please do not allow the enemy to “divide and conquer” your brothers and sisters in Christ.

Confrontation

Social Aloe Ministries: “Glorifying God. Exposing the devil.”

Minister to the People

Masculinity  

Ladies,

Do not allow ministry to cause you to lose your femininity, which is in part due to the acquisition of spiritual pride.

There are many women in various forms of ministry today. That is in part because many men have not fulfilled their calling and responsibilities, to include being the spiritual head of the household (Ephesians 5:22-24). Similarly, Jesus’s initial disciples were sent to preach the gospel to the Jews, but because of rejection, many were sent to the Gentiles instead (Acts 13:46). Many women have had to pick up the slack because men have slacked off.

Don’t get me wrong because I am not saying that women have no business being ministers. The Lord has used women as His ministers throughout the ages. Deborah was a prophetess and judge over Israel (Judges 4), Huldah was a prophetess (2 Kings 22), as was Isaiah’s wife (Isaiah 8:3) and Anna (Luke 2:36). Moses’s sister, Miriam, was also a prophetess (Exodus 15:20). But we see how the Lord disciplined her when she and their brother Aaron, the high priest and a prophet, rose up against Moses because of his interracial marriage (Numbers 12). Miriam was a prophetess but she made the mistake of trying to usurp Moses’s God-given authority, which was greater than hers. Miriam had exceeded the boundaries of her ministry by trying to incite a rebellion against Moses, a humble man whose walk was upright in the sight of the Lord, despite Miriam’s opinions.

A part of apostleship is establishing and enforcing doctrine within Christianity. The Lord used Paul, an apostle and Pharisee (student of the Law), mightily in this manner. The apostle Paul made some comments that can be viewed as sexist in today’s environment (1 Timothy 2:12). But the failure to adhere to those standards has contributed to some women ministers losing their femininity. Quite frankly, some have lost their minds because the power has gone to their heads, oftentimes because of immaturity, and like Miriam, the refusal to submit to authority. The following warning applies to male and female ministers: “Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.” ~ 1 Timothy 3:6 (KJV)

I know of some strong women ministers who have not lost their femininity. Consequently, they have not lost my respect, which means I listen to what they have to say and support their ministries. Sadly, and conversely, I have seen too many women who are conducting themselves as men, in a manner reminiscent of Jezebel (1 Kings 21). Deborah and Huldah were prophetesses who were married, but they had to be wives to their husbands instead of their masters. They had to balance delivering the Word of the Lord with authority yet submitting to their husbands, thereby treating them with respect and dignity.

love-marriage

One of the repercussions of women who lose their femininity, as a result of ministry, is they oftentimes lose their ability to enter into or stay in a relationship with a man. They may be able to find and keep a man like king Ahab, one who will tolerate the ungodly role reversal, but they will rebel against someone like a Jehu who wants to maintain the Lord’s order. One of the reasons men will avoid masculine women is because it will be like being in a relationship with another man. A Godly man will seek a Godly woman but he will avoid and reject the ones who are simply too masculine. One of the signs of a masculine woman is one who refuses to tone things downs and believes a man has to be strong to “handle her”. Men are not interested in being in a power struggle with a woman in a relationship. Men value being respected and certain actions from women will come across as a challenge to their authority, as if it were coming from another man. Ladies, you do not want a man to treat you like a man, or at least I hope you don’t.

Since I have stirred up the proverbial hornets’ nest, let me also address another aspect of women in ministry, and that is them serving in positions the Bible clearly states is reserved for men. Is there a shortage of male ministers in the church why women are appointed as bishops (the senior pastor or overseer)? My Bible says:

“This is a true saying, if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) …And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless. Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things. Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.” ~ 1 Timothy 3:1-5, 10-12 (KJV)

By the way, I am also going to state the obvious, because based on those standards, and the others I excluded from that chapter, many men are not qualified to be bishops or deacons either. Note how the apostle Paul was inspired to stress the importance of men maintaining headship of their homes. If the men cannot maintain headship of their homes, things do not bode well for the churches they will be entrusted to oversee. That is one of the reasons why men, especially those who are on track for those positions, will reject masculine women who will sabotage their ministry unto the Lord.

Humble Pie
The Lord exalts the humble.

Social Aloe Ministries: “Glorifying God. Exposing the devil.”

Are you a prophet in the cave/wilderness?

“One-Strike Rule”    

Please, study the Scriptures to ensure no one deceives you, especially with blatant false prophecies, such as those who predict “the rapture” date. Many have tried and all have failed; yet people still keep believing and trusting in those false prophets, to include after their “prophecies” fail to come to pass.

Many prophets are deceived, which means they will deceive others because it is a case of the blind leading the blind. Some “prophets” are deceived because the Lord never called them, they don’t know the Word of God, or they know the Bible but they don’t know Jesus. Some prophets are outright liars who make things up for selfish reasons, without even being seduced by demons. Others fall prey to seducing spirits and they do not test the spirit (1 John 4:1) before making a proclamation in the name of the Lord. I have a “one-strike rule” when it comes to prophets, you miss it once or you intentionally try to mislead me and you are done. Some “prophets” won’t even get a chance with me, especially when the Holy Spirit exposes them beforehand. By the way, the devil has tried testing me on this, as if I am joking. But I don’t play games with prophetic ministry.

When it comes to rapture dates, it contradicts when Jesus said, ‘Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.’ ~ Matthew 25:13 (KJV) In addition, the following significant event is a precursor to the rapture:

“That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition [the antichrist]; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.” ~ 2 Thessalonians 2:2-4 (KJV)

While there are many antichrists, the antichrist has not been revealed yet, at least not to the public. As a result, especially until then, let no one deceive you. Many people who are boldly contradicting the Word of God by making predictions about the rapture are under the following delusion:

“And then shall that wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the Spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” ~ 2 Thessalonians 2:8-12 (KJV)

There are some false prophets who are working with demonic powers, but most are simply phonies seeking attention. I have had to wrestle with many demons, to include in people, who tried to get me to do things that may have initially sounded good, but soon became apparent that I would have gone out of the Lord’s will. As a result, one of the things I have learned to do is keep my mouth shut, especially because I know how a false prophecy can ruin a person’s life, and possibly his or her relationship with the Lord. So many people have had to deal with the disappointment of looking up for the Lord to rescue them on a certain date from this fallen world. Yes, do what Jesus said and watch. However, rather than looking up in the sky, watch for people who need your help, those who need to hear the gospel of Christ so they too may be saved. Rather than looking up in the sky, “Preach the Word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.” ~ 2 Timothy 4:2-5 (KJV)

In closing, rather than focusing so much on your escape plan, “do the work of an evangelist” and distance yourself from those false prophets, and rebuke them if necessary. Do not allow anyone to deceive you more than once or you go from being a victim to an accomplice.

Ravening Wolves

Social Aloe Ministries: “Glorifying God. Exposing the devil.”

 

 

Repent

Soul Searching

I feel convicted when I hear some messages, even to the point of inquiring of the Lord if and how the message applies to me. Most of the times it does not. Yet, I do not want to fall into the error of doing things that are displeasing to the Lord, or even worse, staying in the condition when confronted with that fact. If I get off course, I usually look for the very next off-ramp marked “Repentance” so I can get off the highway to hell. Moreover, it is important to note that there is a difference between sorrow and repentance. Many people claim they are sorry yet continue going down the highway to hell. They feel the Holy Spirit’s conviction as He tries to turn them away from sin, but they quench, and even grieve the Holy Spirit, and continue down the path to soothe their soul.

Let us take a look at what happened when Jesus said one of His disciples was going to betray Him to illustrate the difference between sorrow and repentance.

“And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the Passover. Now when the even was come, He sat down with the twelve. And as they did eat, He said, ‘Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray Me.’

And they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto him, ‘Lord, is it I?’

And He answered and said, ‘He that dippeth his hand with Me in the dish, the same shall betray Me. The Son of man goeth as it is written of Him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! It had been good for that man if he had not been born.’

[Note: They were sorrowful, but that was the time to transition to repentance.]

Then Judas, which betrayed Him, answered and said, ‘Master, is it I?’

He said unto him, ‘Thou hast said.’” ~ Matthew 26:19-25 (KJV)

By the way, Judas asked the Lord that question after he had consorted with the chief priests and was looking for an opportunity to betray Jesus (Matthew 26:14-16). Again, sorrow is not the same as repentance. Many people are sorry for things they have done and/or are doing but will end up in hell if they do not repent. Repentance is not simply being sorry, it means to stop and turn away from sin, to include making restitutions if necessary. Repentance requires making changes in an effort to draw closer to the Lord.

6, 3, 40, Forever

When Jesus told the “Parable of the Wedding Banquet” (Matthew 22:1-13), keep in mind what happened to the guest who was invited to the banquet but did not take the take to change into a wedding garment prior to showing up:

“And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: and he saith unto him, ‘Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness, there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few are chosen.’” ~ Matthew 22:11-14 (KJV)

The parable is not about showing up to church dressed a certain way, “your Sunday’s best”. Jesus never turned away lepers or refused to feed the hungry because of their appearance. But rather, it speaks to the condition of the heart. Don’t get cast into outer darkness, eternally separated from the Lord, because you showed up in His presence with an unrepentant heart.

Humble Pie
The Lord exalts the humble.

 

Eclipse of The Heart  

Prince Charming met Cinderella when she was looking her absolute best, stunning. But it was not her looks that left an indelible mark on him; it was her character. As a result, when he reconnected with her after an extensive search, he did not see the external image he had seen before. Yet, he was not disappointed or deterred because she had retained what mattered the most, her character. The prince confirmed her identity by having her try on the only reminder he had of the woman who had captivated him at the ball, the glass slipper. The glass slipper was another thing that set her apart from all the other women in the kingdom. It was custom made for her so it fit her feet perfectly and effortlessly. And such is love, it is transparent as glass and it does not hurt when it is the right fit. The glass slipper is also symbolic of how the prince could see the character of the woman he desired, despite her outward appearance. Love is clearly unwavering.

By the way, ladies, please take note of how the prince held on to the only remnant he had of the woman he had fallen for, and he searched for her. Ladies, you never have to spend time pursuing a man who has your “glass slipper”. If he has your number but never calls, your social media account(s) and never checks or comments… I hope you get the picture. If a man has your “glass slipper”, and he knows you are interested in him, yet he is not pursuing you, don’t ever pursue him. Never walk a mile for a man who would never walk across the street for you; Prince Charming scoured the kingdom in his search for Cinderella. When you read the Book of Ruth, take a look at how Boaz reacted after Ruth expressed an interest in being in a relationship with him; Ruth never pursued Boaz and she never had to (Ruth 2-3). After all, “The man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favor from the Lord.” ~ Proverbs 18:22 (NLT) A woman who pursues a man will find misery, in part because he won’t treasure her.

As a Christian, whether a man or woman, do not commit idolatry by pursuing a relationship with a person instead of the Lord. If you cannot let go of a person, surrender him or her to the Lord, that person has become an idol (a god) in your life. If a person permeates your thoughts more than the Lord, that person may be a god in your life. It is idolatry if getting into a relationship, to include marriage, is more important to you than being with the Lord. If you are trying to make someone be with you, especially when the person clearly has no interest in you, that person has become an idol in your life, the god you truly worship. That includes even if you believe the Lord told you the individual is going to be your spouse; I recommend that you read Genesis 24:1-9 and meditate on the eighth verse. The Lord is not going to violate anyone’s free will, so woe unto you if you do, or if you try. If you are trying to resurrect a relationship the Lord has allowed to die, not only is that person a god in your life, you have become the god of your life. I could provide more examples of idolatrous relationships, or attempts to be in such relationships, but I leave you with the following Words from the Lord:

‘You must not have any other god but Me. You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea. You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations of those who reject Me. But I lavish unfailing love for a thousand generations on those who love Me and obey My commands.’ ~ Exodus 20:3-6 (NLT)

 

Anatomy of a Heartbreak: When SAMson met Delilah
A narrative of recovering from heartbreak and reaching Jesus in the process.

Social Aloe Ministries: “Glorifying God. Exposing the devil.”