Monthly Archives: April 2018

Pride

prideThe same pride and self will which refuses help and causes injury to one’s physical body or possessions will also hinder and damage ones spiritual growth when help is rejected.  Pride is defined as the deep pleasure derived from one’s own achievement.  It is the lust of the flesh to which religion appeals because it involves an act that we must perform to gain some type of victory.

18 For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. 19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage.” 2 Peter 2:18-19

Religion will give us a method with great swelling words cloaked with Scripture to achieve or gain the victory which is already freely given by Christ Jesus by faith through grace.  The reality is, we have failed to maintain that which the Cross of Jesus afforded the Child of God because we have fallen from Grace through faith and believed a corrupted gospel; we believed the “great swelling words” proclaimed by the religious and have put ourselves under law.

But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead. For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.” Romans 7:8-9

These man made laws which bring the Believer back under bondage to perform an act in order to achieve that which ONLY the Holy Spirit can do in the heart and life of the Believer results in pride.  This is the leaven which leavens the whole lump.  Good intent and sincerity can not gain one liberty.  Mankind cannot superintend the work of God in the heart of mankind…that is the ministry of the Holy Spirit.

For the Law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.

For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:

That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.” Romans 8:3-5

When satan successfully moves the Believer’s faith from the Cross of Christ to maintain the victory freely given by Jesus’ finished work, which produces humility, and he deceitfully directs our faith to a man made law in order to gain the victory, which will always produce pride, we fall from grace and the Cross of Christ becomes of no effect. As we follow the lusts of our sinful flesh to gain victory by our intellect, abilities or self will, the Holy Spirit is not commissioned to free us from the law of sin and death and we remain bound; swept to and fro by every wind of doctrine.

If the power of sin is broken by something other than the Cross of Christ, then the Cross of Christ was in vain. God forbid no! If we must do something other than believe in the power of God, which is the Cross of Christ, to redeem mankind then the Cross of Christ was in vain.  Again I say, God forbid no!  Any work, method or philosophy given to break the power of sin in the Believer’s life or pay the penalty of sin in the sinner’s life other than Jesus Christ and Him crucified is another gospel and another Jesus which will always produce pride.

Jesus is the Source and His Cross the means by which we receive from God. Faith in Jesus, Who He is and what He has done for whosoever will believe cannot produce pride but a humble knowing that without Him, we are condemned to follow the things of the flesh; without Jesus we are condemned to the penalty of sin (death) and the power of sin.

16 For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

17 For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved.

18 He that believes on Him is not condemned: but he that believes not is condemned already, because he has not believed in the Name of the only begotten Son of God.” John 3:16-18

-Donna Clark Warren

 

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Behold The Lamb of God

John 1When the problem is ignored, the solution will also be ignored.  When the problem is called by another name, another solution will be presented.

Since the fall of Adam, sin is the problem in the world today.  The evil and wickedness found in the world, is due to sin.  Death is due to sin.  Sickness is due to sin.  The godliest man or woman in the world may get sick and die and the reason for this sickness and resulting death is sin…not necessarily their sin but sin due to the fall of man.

That being said, if sin is ignored from behind the pulpit than the solution to sin will also be ignored.  If sin is called a mental sickness another solution will be presented; namely, humanistic psychology.  If sin is called a bad habit, another solution will be presented with self as the source and self effort as the solution.  Sometimes Scriptural ordinances and practices are given to overcome “the problem” (sin) even though they were not given to overcome sin.  Praying was not given to overcome sin. Reading our Bible was not given to over come sin.  Both of these are absolutely necessary for the Believer but they were not given to overcome sin.

The next day John sees Jesus coming unto him, and says, Behold the Lamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world.”  John 1:29

Jesus Christ came to die on Calvary’s Cross to take away the sin of the world.  When the church calls sin what the world calls sin (sickness, bad habit, etc.), the church will present the solution the world presents cloaked with Scripture. By partaking in this solution (whatever it may be), the Believer deems the finished work of Jesus Christ insufficient to do that which He came to do in our life…break the power of sin (Romans 6:14) and the Cross of Christ becomes of no effect.

17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the Gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the Cross of Christ should be made of none effect.

18 For the preaching of the Cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.” 1 Cor. 1:17-18

The problem in the world is sin.  The only solution to sin is the Cross of Christ.  Jesus Christ and Him crucified…be determined to know nothing else.

-Donna Clark Warren

Simplicity in Christ

2Cor113But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat of it: for in the day that you eat thereof you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:17

Before the fall of man due to Adam’s original sin, mankind did not understand “good and evil”.  They fell from knowing God (God conscious) to knowing good and evil (self conscious). Adam and Eve were once spiritually alive unto God and knew only Him.  Eve being deceived by satan, ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil but Adam, being not deceived, willfully chose to disobey God (Genesis 3:4-6).

This knowledge of good which led to the spiritual death of mankind became the moral authority of mankind; a vain philosophy or religion given to reconcile man unto God yet God does not recognize.

Many recognize the knowledge of evil.  We can easily see the vice of satan which has authority over this worldly system.  It is the “good” that deceives. The philosophies cloaked in Scripture are equated with the Truth of the  Gospel of Jesus Christ and Him crucified, yet they are another gospel with another Jesus because they are leavened…puffed up with vain words.

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte (convert), and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.” Matthew 23:15

Vain philosophies, a search for truth in an attempt to convert or be converted to that which is “good” according to the knowledge of good and evil is NOT the simplicity of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” 2 Corinthians 11:3

Jesus Christ came to die on Calvary’s Cross to pay the penalty of sin for sinners and break the power of sin for Believers.  He is alive, sitting at the Right Hand of the Throne of God searching for hearts perfect toward Him…to show Him self strong on their behalf (2 Chronicles 16:9).  Yet we, His Children, unknowingly render His redeeming work as insufficient when we seek a philosophy instead of simple faith…faith in Jesus, Who He is and what He has done to provide all we need according to His riches in glory.

One cannot be born again and made spiritually alive through vain philosophies.  One cannot partake in God’s Divine Nature through humanistic psychology. There is but one Way, one Truth and one Source of Life and His Name is Jesus Christ…be determined to know nothing else among you.

Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these you might be partakers of the Divine Nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” 2 Peter 1:4

-Donna Clark Warren

 

Flesh vs. Spirit

romans-8-5-flesh-spiritAnd He said to them all, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” Luke 9:23.

It is an abomination to the worldly system to deny one’s intellect, talents and abilities to achieve that which is desired.  It is foolishness to the flesh to deny ourselves for that which we want.

For the preaching of the Cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.” 1 Corinthians 1:18.

To God’s System, His prescribed order of victory, it is an abomination to depend upon ourselves; our intellect, talent and abilities, to achieve that which is desired according to His Will.

But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6

Sadly, the majority of the modern church are applying the world’s prescribed order to obtain that which the Believer desires.  By their actions they have rendered the Cross of Christ insufficient to supply all of their needs according to His riches in glory and sought vain philosophies to engage their abilities, intellect, etc. to obtain that which God Will’s to freely give by faith through grace…faith in the Son of God.

20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me.

21 I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” Galatians 2:20-21

Fighting the good fight of faith, faith in the finished work of the Cross of Christ, is God’s Prescribed Order of victory over the world, the flesh and the devil…not us nor our efforts.  Fight the good fight.  We must recognize how we receive the preaching of the Cross of Christ.  If it seems foolish while the worldly system is readily accepted, we are walking after the flesh.

For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.

For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” Romans 8:5-6

-Donna Clark Warren

 

Following Christ

follower-of-christ-215 For though you have ten thousand instructers in Christ, yet have you not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I  have begotten you through the Gospel.

16 Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers (imitators) of me.

17 For this cause have I sent unto you Timothy, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach every where in every church.

18 Now some are puffed up, as though I would not come to you.

19 But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord will, and will know, not the speech of them which are puffed up, but the power.

20 For the Kingdom of God is not in Word, but in power.” 1 Corinthians 4:15-20

Follow those who follow Christ; those who preach Jesus Christ and Him crucified and who live Jesus Christ and Him crucified. Everyone is going to follow someone; some preacher, teacher, prophet or evangelist and if that someone is not looking unto the Cross of Christ for all that they receive from God, do not follow them.  If they look unto 40 days of purpose to receive from God, do not follow them.  If they look unto 21 days of fasting to receive from God, do not follow them.  If they look unto paradigms, harbingers, blood moons, penance, hail mary’s or Jewish feasts to receive from God…do not follow them.

Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” 1 Cor. 11:1

If they follow the Lord Jesus Christ according to His Word, not man’s methods, follow them as they follow Christ.

And He (Jesus) said to them all, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” Luke 9:23

If any man be a follower of Christ Jesus, they must deny themselves…deny their own intellect, their abilities, skills, efforts and self will in order to pick up the blessings afforded them by the Cross of Jesus and follow Jesus.  The Cross of Christ was a place of great suffering for our Lord Jesus but for us it is a place of great blessing.  Picking up our cross is not a particular burden we must bear but the blessings afforded us by the atoning death of Jesus Christ on Calvary’s Cross.

Again, in order to follow Jesus we must pick up our cross (that which Jesus afforded us at Calvary) and in order to pick up our cross, we must deny ourselves (our self will and self efforts).   Understanding this great truth and following Jesus Christ, others will see the Power of God in the lives of Jesus’ followers and not puffed up words.  Our loved ones, our family members, children, coworkers…the people in line at the grocery store will see the Power of God working in you that which is pleasing to HIM.  Precept upon precept and line upon line, the Believer overcomes adversity by the Blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony of the Cross of Christ.

15 And He (Jesus) said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.

16 He that believes and is baptized (baptized into Jesus’ death, not water baptism [Romans 6:3-4]) shall be saved; but he that believes not shall be damned.

17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In My Name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” Mark 16:15-18

Follow those who follow Christ.  You will know them by their fruit and not their words.  The Power of God (the Cross of Christ) is having It’s intended effect in their lives and sometimes it may be painful and unpleasing as the storms rage…but they continue following; precept upon precept and line upon line they will always end up on the banks of the promise land.

Always remember Brothers and Sisters, there are those who are following you…those who are looking unto you as you are looking unto the Cross of Christ and consider your testimony; NOT your social or economic status or your Facebook likes but your testimony of the Blood of the Lamb.  The devil will try to distract and hinder; he will come to kill, steal and destroy your testimony to those eyes who are watching you in the storms of life.  No matter the case, keep looking unto the Jesus, the Author and Finisher of your faith.  Stand still and see the Salvation of the Lord.

Consider your testimony. What has the Cross of Christ done in your heart and life? There are those following you as you follow Christ.

-Donna Clark Warren

Philosophical Strongholds

strongholds-960x250For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;” 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

Mankind receives nothing from God except it comes from Jesus by means of the Cross and the Holy Spirit superintends the work commissioned by God for the Believer to receive.  Anything…any vain philosophy, method of man or sanctimonious ceremony given to receive the blessings of God other than faith in the Cross of Christ is in fact exalting itself against the knowledge of God.

These vain imaginations are philosophical strongholds in the life of the religious. Seeing they see not.  Sadly they walk after the flesh and they war after they flesh with methods birthed from the minds of man and traditions of their fathers.

Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto you are also called, and have professed a good profession before many witnesses.” 1 Timothy 6:12

The good fight of faith that the Believer fights is faith in the redeeming work of Jesus Christ.  This fight is not a carnal fight but is a fight of faith that is determined to know nothing else except the Cross of Christ and casts down the vain imaginations of man that exalts itself against the knowledge of God so that these vanities won’t become philosophical strongholds in our lives.

18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me (Jesus), because He has anointed Me to preach the Gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, 19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” Luke 4:18-19

It is the preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and Him crucified that heals the brokenhearted because it points one’s faith to the Cross of Christ.  This faith in the Cross of Christ touches the Throne Room of God and the Holy Spirit is then commissioned to superintend God’s work in the Believer’s life. Any other method presented to the congregation directs their faith to that particular method,  to “their part”, and makes the Cross of Christ of no effect in the Believer’s life.

For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the Gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the Cross of Christ should be made of none effect.” 1 Corinthians 1:17

No matter how religious it may sound, if it’s not the Cross of Christ it’s another gospel and another Jesus. This preaching is not done intentionally but deceitfully.  It is a gospel believed by many sincere Christians who preach what they believe.  If they believe fasting 21 days is the method by which they receive from God then they are the source and their fasting is the means by which they receive from God.  If this was so, then the Cross of Christ was in vain. God forbid no!

God blesses our consecration to His Word and obedience to His Will but if our consecration doesn’t include the good fight of faith, the casting down of imaginations and determination to know nothing else except Jesus Christ and Him crucified then our consecration is in fact ambition and our faith is greed.

For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified.” 1 Corinthians 2:2

Beware of philosophical strongholds that take root in the Believer’s heart and exalts itself above the knowledge of God…Who HE is and what HE has done for whosoever will believe.

-Donna Clark Warren

 

Still Small Voice

Still small voiceAnd when He puts forth His own Sheep, He goes before them, and the Sheep follow Him: for they know His Voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.” John 10:4-5

There are many that hear that still small Voice of the Lord, give It a mental assent and otherwise ignore. This still small Voice is not ignored on theological grounds but our morality (or lack thereof) causes us to dismiss His Voice.  It hinders our comfort zone and stirs us into action…an action we don’t want to carry out so we give His Voice a nod and carry on with our daily living.

20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My Voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.

21 To him that overcomes 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 3:20-21

Some have heard His Voice, come out from among religion and opened wide the door of the Church…Jesus Christ.  Seeing, they now see.  Hearing, they now hear.  They understand because the now know WHO they didn’t know…Jesus Christ,  and daily they seek Him and HIS righteousness first (Matthew 13:13, Matthew 6:33).

” Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the Door of the Sheep. All that ever came before Me are thieves and robbers: but the Sheep did not hear them. I am the Door: by Me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.” John 10:7-9

Sadly there are many who have learned of a denominational Jesus, an intellectual Jesus, a miracle Jesus, philosophical Jesus, a feel good Jesus or even a preacher Jesus yet they have never known the Jesus of the Bible….Jesus Christ and Him crucified.  They have never heard that Jesus Christ came to die on Calvary’s Cross to pay the penalty of sin for the sinner AND break the power of sin for the Believer therefore they fight daily to overcome that which has already been freely given – dominion over sin (Romans 6:14).

28 Come unto Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My Yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and you shall find rest unto your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29

This IS the rest Jesus Christ afforded the Believer on Calvary’s Cross.  We don’t fight to overcome, we fight the good fight of faith…faith in the Cross of Christ for dominion over sin.  This is the ONLY faith that God recognizes.  When our faith is properly placed in the Cross of Christ, we give the Holy Spirit latitude to do that which He is commissioned to do in the life of every Believer…free us from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2) and work in us a good work that is born of the Spirit of God to be used in the Kingdom of God.  This is not found by some psychological questionnaire or vain philosophy presented by religion to corrupt the Truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and Him crucified but by the preaching of the Cross of Christ.  Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17).  If we’re not hearing the rightly divided Word of God, our faith is in the wrongly divided Word of God…it is corrupted and leads to destruction.

23 But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; 24 But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.” 1 Corinthians 1:23-24

Be determined to know nothing else among you.  The overcomers hear what the Spirit of the Lord is saying to the churches…

And they overcame him by the Blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.” Revelation 12:11

-Donna Clark Warren

 

The Source

18403154_1350699678356846_676078471744166346_nThe thief comes not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” John 10:10

When we are the source and our part, our works or what we must do the means by which receive from God we are in fact cursed (Galatians 1:8).  In other words, if we believe our consecration to the religious method gains us righteousness, we are sitting under another gospel and learning of another Jesus…not the Jesus of the Bible.

Life and life more abundantly comes by and through the Cross of Christ.  When Jesus is the Source and His Cross the means, our faith is built upon a solid foundation…a foundation authored and finished by Jesus.  The Holy Spirit is given latitude to superintend the work of God in our lives when Jesus Christ and Him crucified is the Source and the means of our righteousness and we are blessed beyond measure.  We are freely given dominion over sin when our faith is placed solely and exclusively in the Cross of Christ (Romans 6:14) and not our self will and self efforts to overcome.

Looking unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the Cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the Right Hand of the Throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2

The Cross of Christ is not a theory, philosophy or a method…the Cross of Christ is Truth for whosoever will believe; It is the power of God to those who are saved.  For others, the Cross of Christ is foolishness.  Recognizing how we react to the preaching of the Cross of Christ shows us the condition of our heart.

-Donna Clark Warren

* Picture credit http://www.sonlifetv.com *

Vain Religions

James 1 26But God forbid that I should glory, save in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by Whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.” Galatians 6:14

Sadly, the preaching of the Cross of Christ for victory over the world, the flesh and the devil is too often rejected by the Believer or simply intellectually dismissed by the religious as foolishness. At the same time 40 days of purpose, paradigm shifts and humanistic psychology are warmly embraced.  No longer do the seeker sensitive preachers seek God for what HE wants the people to hear on Sunday morning but a series is handed down from the denominational headquarters or a sermon picked from the internet presented to the people so the congregation will erupt with an emphatic response which denominational rules determine.  For some denominations, jumping up and down screaming “Hallelujah!”, “Glory to God!” or “Amen!” is out of order.  While others deem one spiritually dead if you’re not moved to a response.

Religion is pleasing until it is confronted with Biblical Christianity which lays waste the traditions of man.  The hindrances which arise from denominations are revealed when the Word of God is the plumb line. What was once deemed foolishness for overcoming the world, the flesh and the devil in our daily lives is exalted on high when the revelation of the Cross of Christ is given to those who have believed.

When a born again Child of God understands we have deemed the Cross of Christ as insufficient for victory over sin by running after 40 days of purpose or some other vain philosophy to gain dominion over sin (Romans 6:14) we are either humbled or rebellious.  Our reaction is dependent on the condition of our heart.  The true condition of our heart is often revealed in our reactions.  Religion focuses on our actions when the Lord will use our reaction to show us the true intent of our heart.

25 But whoso looks into the perfect law of liberty, and continues therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.

26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridles not his tongue, but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.” James 1:25-26

Man’s vain religions deem the Cross of Christ as foolishness for daily living but for those who are saved, the Cross of Christ is the power of God.  The Cross of Christ is sufficient for our every need.  Jesus is the Source and His Cross the means by which we receive from God.  We receive Salvation and Sanctification through the Cross of Christ.  Who Jesus is and what He has done on Calvary’s Cross IS the power of God…be determined to know nothing else among you.

-Donna Clark Warren