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Being Deceived

The Power of Humility

Choosing the Right Mate

by Pam Clark

Deceit can come in many different ways. In the beginning it came in the form of a serpent, and a lie was told that caused sin to enter in and death to occur for all mankind. This type of deceit came from an outside source and there are still outside forces working on mankind to deceive us.

There are also things that we just want to believe and we can get so caught up into our wishes that we can begin to believe a lie and this is called being self deceived. It destroys communication with others.

Sometimes people lie to us to either get their way or to take advantage of us. Those persons purposed in their hearts to be deceitful and the devil gets the glory because it was not motivated by Spirit of God, for God is Truth. God will not only judge the original source of sin, but also all those who line up with it /or him, being Satan.

The truth works but when people become greedy or self-deceived, then we have problems. The Living Bible says in Romans 1:25: “Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about God, they deliberately chose to believe lies. So they prayed to the things God made, but wouldn't obey the blessed God who made these things.”

It goes on to say (in the NKJV/KJV versions) that even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate or a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting or right, being filled with all unrighteousness. In other words, the more they chose to believe the lie, the more the lies came to them until they were filled with lying spirits!

Therefore, the Bible says, they became full of perversion and wickedness and enemies of God. Telling a lie can be a dangerous thing, because the enemy fights hard to get a stronghold in the open door of that life.

Our emotions are very fragile at times. Stress, heartache, even medications can affect the way we look at things. We must be so careful that we don’t get set up in a trap.

The Bible says that in a multitude of counselors there is safety, and that we should not forsake the assembling of ourselves together with other believers. During the stresses and challenges of life, we need people who can keep us on the right track!

God has set ministers in the Church to help us learn to rightly divide the Word of Truth (His Word). Those who are self deceived will often use Bible verses to justify their lies.

After Jesus was baptized, the Holy Spirit led Him into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. God knew that Jesus (as the Son of Man) had to stand firm against the attacks of the enemy. Satan used the Bible to try to trick and deceive Jesus to His destruction, but Jesus just came right back again with the verses that set it straight, the Word rightly divided.

Jesus said that Satan was a murderer from the beginning and the father of all lies. He also said that those who were like him would end up in the Lake of Fire if they did not repent. God is not playing games! It can seem that you are getting away with something for a little while, but it is only the pleasure of sin for a season. After that comes judgment. You can never outsmart God.

And if you want to enter into Heaven for eternal life, you will have to forsake all lying. No liar will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. It will just not be allowed.

We may suffer for a while because of the evils in this world, but when God separates those who love Him from those who don’t, it will be a glorious time because He will allow no evil to enter into Heaven. Hallelujah! There is no such thing as a good time in hell. Jesus described it as a place where the fire is not quenched and their worm does not die.

Pretty scary! I burned myself with a hot curling iron the other day and that was enough to make me want to get it right! Living life God’s way brings peace of mind and favor to the land.

Jesus will come and set all things in order, but until He comes, it is up to us to set the standard to the best of our abilities. His Holy Spirit is with us to help us and to give us the discerning of spirits that we need, but we must pray for it!

With God, good things are ahead, and many things are being restored. He can replace what we didn’t think could be replaced and as one person said, “God can unscramble eggs!” That means He can make what seems to be an impossible situation work out.

His Kingdom is a Kingdom of Love. So, is there really a choice? Not for me! How about you? He is for you, not against you, even if you have sinned. Repent today and He will receive you into His everlasting arms of love.

of me!

by Pam Clark

One of the best lessons I ever got in life was to find out how despicable I was. I was raised by decent folks--not perfect, but they loved me and they meant well and I knew it. I always seemed to have a mind of my own, but came to find out that was not bad.

My mother, who was a great influence on my life, was the opposite of me by contrast, in that she loved routine. She liked things to be put in a place and to stay there. Not me. I forever move the furniture around, I’m not afraid of new ideas or adventures and I like things to be different or varied. My mother always liked a few well made expensive clothes, while I liked a big variety of the less expensive. We were opposites in many ways!

What was practical to me was not practical to her, so you can imagine some of our conversations, especially in my teen years. But there was love there. Not always agreement--but love.

Even my mother’s religion was conservative. It worked for her. She was consistent and stable. Well, you can imagine what happened when I found “the Holy Ghost,” or the “Spirit filled” life! Yep--I was a wild woman for Jesus, and still am in many respects. (I think I tested her, ha ha.)

She was definitely praying while I was swinging from the chandeliers. (I still do that on occasion.) It was “destiny” --or life-- for me to grow up and go out on my own. Some of Mom’s ways began looking more attractive.

But as I was maturing and entering into the joys and waters of God’s way of life, I found out that there were many things that the only way I could get them, was on my own--with faith in God. It was a “revelation” to me to find out that I was not a “bad person” just because I was not just like somebody else.

People do have different temperaments, but that doesn’t change the will of God’s Words! But He does work with people in the places where they are. That truth was a great comfort to me.

I love God and His Word, and wanted to go deeper. He will always let you! So I began to put my faith to the test on many things. I would take Scriptures, in the best context I could understand, and test them as they applied to me.

Many proved wonderful resources and Spiritual sustenance and strength. Some took painful experiences to understand. But God gives wisdom without upbraiding (or fussing at you--see James 1:5) and He knows when you are trying and believing, and when you are resisting and rebelling.

You can’t hide from God! He knows our hearts better than we do. Have you ever cared for children? Have you ever known what they were going to do before they did it? God knows us the same way!

As I cried out to God to love Him more and be used by Him, He allowed me to go through some very difficult places. He allowed me to make some really big mistakes. He has even allowed me to look like a fool! (I couldn’t believe it, but He did!)

There were two things He wanted me to gain from all of that. One, He wanted me to have the understanding that there was no good thing in me--no good idea, no good intention, and no good works. Any thing good that came through me came because of His Spirit in me. He let me plainly know that “He is the Vine and we are the branches--without Him, we can do nothing!” Is there an easy way to learn that? I don’t think so.

And then next He wanted me to understand that His way is right. His Spirit and His Truth rules. He allowed me to know that I could take great comfort in His Word. His Word always proves true in spite of adverse people and circumstances.

My humiliations were the best thing that happened to me because they gave me a greater reliance upon Him. I can’t take credit for anything--even my good works, but He can use me more if I give Him all the honor and the glory and the praise.

My humiliations also caused me to have a greater understanding of His grace. When His Blood that was shed covers something--it is covered! When it removes our sin, it is removed! Oh, the enemies of God will still try to get you and they are not beneath lying if they think it will help their cause, but God will remain true. The enemies of God will have to contend with Him!

When I get past my self, I can hear Him more clearly. When I don’t have my righteousness but His, I have greater boldness to come before Him. And Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” When I have His purity, I can see Him better and am abundantly blessed.

The world can’t see this because they can only see the temporal. Born again Christians have eternal eyes. When Christians have things working right, the world admires them and many try to imitate them and will even call themselves Christians because they want the blessings.

But when the judging and the shaking occurs, the true will be sifted from the false, because only things which are eternal will last. Yes, it may cause you some humiliation to see the things of God, but the rewards are everlasting. God bless you in your journey!

and Jesus loves you, 2!!!

by Pam Clark

I heard one of my favorite ministers say: “Commitment is the stuff life is made of.” And the more I thought about that, the more I realized it was true! It takes commitment for anything to function or live.

If you want groceries, it is nice to know the store is open. When you are driving, it is nice to know the traffic signals are working! A favorite story of mine is one where the mother is telling her son, he needs to get up and go to church.

He doesn’t want to and complains loudly. She persists and finally he says, “Give me three good reasons!” The mother replies, “One it’s Sunday, two, you should, and three, you are the pastor!”

When you go to church, it’s nice to know the pastor is there, whether he wants to be or not. We take up the cause of the fatherless and poor because someone who needs to be making a commitment is not coming through for whatever reason. Excuses will not work! The Bible says that a man who won’t care for his family is worse than an infidel (or unbeliever).

What is marriage? Marriage is two people coming together in an agreement to serve God and each other. A three fold cord is not easily broken.

There is a Third Person at work in the committed Christian’s marriage. But don’t think that you can manipulate God! Many miss it by thinking they can “force God” on issues. They think if they can just get that cute attractive thing to marry them, then God is committed to them to make it work! Not so! What you put in--in integrity or dishonesty--is what you will reap.

What should we look for in a mate? A Christian should first of all pray and ask for God’s will and help in selecting a mate. God will not force anyone to marry someone. God honors choice. We need to know what we can live with, since we all have our flaws, too.

The whole point of having choice in the Garden of Eden was to test if love for God was genuine or not. While they may have been lied to, God still gave the opportunity for the man and the woman to prove their love by withstanding Satan and being restored.

That is where we are today! We need to know somebody in a number of circumstances before we rush in on attraction alone. Can your mate-to-be resist evil? Some things seem great--for a season.

Life offers a number of tests. Will you respond TOGETHER on major issues enough to want to stay together? Will both of you seek God’s will or just one of you??? Premarital counseling is good in that it explores your expectations in marriage. You could be disappointed for something that was plainly there all along!

What if you want five kids and your spouse doesn’t want any? Will your parents feel neglected if your spouse wants to spend every holiday with their parents? Will you understand if your wife doesn’t want you to go duck hunting on your vacation time? What if she wants to stay in business instead of giving up her job to serve you? Will you think less of your spouse if he or she does not want to raise your kids in your family church?

What if the other wants to spend the family money on one thing and you want to save it for emergencies? What if your mate refuses to give up that rotten friend or obnoxious pet or bad habit?

What if one of you feels called to ministry and the other does not? Issues less than these have led to divorce! Is your mate considerate of your feelings? Is your mate-to-be sensitive to the things you hold dear?

Remember, you are taking up residence with this person! Does this relationship count on your abilities to change them? Most of the time, once the catch is made, the old ways come back with a vengeance!

A marriage not in unity is a disaster. Take it from one who has been there--it is better to be single than in a rotten marriage. In my case, the unbeliever eventually departed but not without a toll on me. I recovered through the Word of God, but it was a difficult price to pay!

God takes marriage seriously. He likens it to Christ and the Church. It is important to the One who blesses it and died for it. God wants intimacy with His people and He hates strife.

One thing you can say about Annaias and Saphirra was that they were committed to the same cause. I have seen solid unGodly marriages like that. Commitment is not the same thing as purity before God. But children from unequally yoked parents suffer greatly. Too often the unbeliever gets tired of the believer’s beliefs and they feel no moral constraint to live right and not leave.

You must believe that God has a mate for you! But you may have to wait a long time. God may want you to go through many tests and trials so that you will come together in a unity that will keep you together. And Paul says that often, mates can distract you from the things of God and that can cheat you out of your eternal rewards. Do you want that?

All anyone can do is the best they can do. There is no condemnation for those who are IN Christ Jesus--or to say it another way--for those who are in the anointing of Jesus. (The word Christ means anointed.) It’s not just enough to believe in Jesus, are you IN His life or just observing it?

If you are obeying the First Commandment of God to love the Lord with all your heart, mind, soul and strength, you can count on God working out the details and trials of your life for good. But notice the word is “with ALL of your heart, mind, soul, and strength,” not just a portion of it.

How much of a blessing do you want? What a joy to serve God in unity!