Kenneth Dalessandro • September 21, 2022
“To receive the instruction of wisdom, Justice, judgment, and equity; 4To give prudence to the simple, To the young man knowledge and discretion 5A wise man will hear and increase learning, And a man of understanding will attain wise counsel, 6To understand a proverb and an enigma, The words of the wise and their riddles” Proverbs 1:3-6
The opening verses of the book of Proverbs give us a blueprint for what is to follow. In verse 3, we see the word “receive.” In Hebrew, it is the word “acquire.” It was an agricultural term that meant to harvest grapes for one’s own use. The Proverbs are meant to be for individual consumption. They will produce good things in our lives in a very practice way if we come into line with their teaching. The Psalmist wrote,
“The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage.”
Psalms 16:6 AMP
The next word we come across is the word prudence. The word prudence here means to have wisdom, discernment, or shrewdness in the management of affairs. It means to show a capacity for understanding a matter. It leads to a premediated course of action based upon an accurate assessment of the matter. To make correct decision is to know the truth of a matter. The problem is that many do not want to see the truth! Jesus told His disciples,
“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32 KJV
Following along those thoughts we come to the word discretion. Discretion is the result of prudence. It is the ability to make the proper decisions. This is particularly true in the realm of moral correctness. As we get to know God, we realize how far we really are from His perfection. I love the encounter between Jesus and Andrew,
When the two disciples heard him say this, they followed Jesus. 38Turning around, Jesus saw them following and asked, “What do you want? They said, “Rabbi” (which means “Teacher”), “where are you staying?” 39“Come,” he replied, “and you will see.” John 1:37- 39
Daily God invites us to “come and see.” What we do after that is our responsibility! We are called to be conformed to the image of Christ in our lives so that those who see us give glory to Him!
In verse 5 we see the key to the preceding words, “hear.” The word means not simple to receive auditory signals but rather to receiving the message. Many people today hear but do not receive the message of God. I love the fact the God told us that He is not a liar.
““God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do it? Or has He spoken and will He not make it good and fulfill it” Numbers 23:19 AMP
We can be sure that God is telling us the truth when we hear and read His Word. God described the prophet Ezekiel exactly the conditions we find ourselves in today,
“Son of man, you live among a rebellious house, who have eyes to see but do not see, who have ears to hear but do not hear; for they are a rebellious people. Ezekiel 12:2 AMP
Finally, the Proverbs helps us to understand the words of the wise! There is life in God’s Word if we chose to hear and follow. If you are a child of God, you have the Holy Spirit living inside. His job is to make clear to you the meaning of the Word. I would encourage you today to take time to listen to the still small voice of the Holy Spirt and allow Him to open God’s Word so that you may have life abundantly!
Have a blessed day, Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • September 19, 2022
““But whoever listens to me (Wisdom) will live securely and in confident trust and will be at ease, without fear or dread of evil.” Proverbs 1:33 AMP
The first chapter of the book of Proverbs clearly lays out the purpose. I think that everyone would agree that the goal of life is to live securely, walk in trust, and be at ease without the fear of evil! Well…here is the solution to the problem. If we want to reap the benefits of the book, we must follow the author’s instruction and guidance,
“The [reverent] fear of the LORD [that is, worshiping Him and regarding Him as truly awesome] is the beginning and the preeminent part of knowledge [its starting point and its essence]; But arrogant fools despise [skillful and godly] wisdom and instruction and self-discipline.” Proverbs 1:7 AMP
The world has rejected this axiom and is traveling headlong into the abyss. According to this verse, it is impossible to establish peace and security without a healthy respect and acknowledgement of the Lord. The Scriptures are “owner’s manual.” If I purchase a new vehicle, the first thing I do is read the owner’s manual! They tell me to change the oil at certain points or I will suffer the consequences. Whether I believe it or not, the engine will cease if I ignore this basic principle. So, it is the same with the Word of God! Ignore the directions and suffer the consequences.
If you notice in the above verse we see the mentioning of two things, knowledge, and wisdom. I would ask if they were the same? There are many today with many higher degrees and have vast knowledge, but they have no wisdom! Acquiring knowledge is simply a practice, knowing how to apply knowledge is wisdom! The Scriptures make that perfectly clear,
“For even though [d]they knew God [as the Creator], they did not [e]honor Him as God or give thanks [for His wondrous creation]. On the contrary, they became worthless in their thinking [godless, with pointless reasonings, and silly speculations], and their foolish heart was darkened. 22Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23and exchanged the glory and majesty and excellence of the immortal God for [f]an image [worthless idols] in the shape of mortal man and birds and four-footed animals and reptiles” Romans 1:20-23 AMP
Can you see the principle at work here? If we refuse to acknowledge God, then our thinking becomes worthless supported by pointless reasoning and silly speculations. WOW! That is clearly a description of what we see happening throughout the world today. The result of this practice is what follows,
“24Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their own hearts to [sexual] impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them [abandoning them to the degrading power of sin], 25because [by choice] they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. 26For this reason God gave them over to degrading and vile passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural [a function contrary to nature], 27and in the same way also the men turned away from the natural function of the woman and were consumed with their desire toward one another, men with men committing shameful acts and in return receiving in their own bodies the inevitable and appropriate penalty for their wrongdoing.” Romans 1:24-27 AMP
Now God did not put sexually transmitted diseases on man but warned that if they practiced such things there would be results! You can apply this principle to any area of sin. But even despite the reality of sinful behavior, man continues to raise his fist to God while adding more fuel to the fire of his own judgement! There is an answer however to this dilemma, Proverbs 1:7! The Apostle James said it best,
“21So get rid of all uncleanness and all that remains of wickedness, and with a humble spirit receive the word [of God] which is implanted [actually rooted in your heart], which is able to save your souls. 22But prove yourselves doers of the word [actively and continually obeying God’s precepts], and not merely listeners [who hear the word but fail to internalize its meaning], deluding yourselves [by unsound reasoning contrary to the truth].” James 1:21-22
Have a blessed day, Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • September 18, 2022
“These are the proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel, 2for gaining wisdom and discipline, for comprehending words of insight, 3and for receiving instruction in wise living and in Righteousness, Justice and Equity”
Proverbs 1:1-3 NIV
When we read the book of Psalms, we see the “songs” of the writer in worship to God. The book of Proverbs however is a manual to practical living. It is filled with moral maxims used to instruct young people and old alike with the mental skills that promote wise living. The word Proverbs is from the verb meaning “to be like.” A proverb is a form of communicating truth by using comparisons or figures of speech to crystalize or condense a moral axiom. The outcome of these proverbs is a clear undersetting of the moral and a reward for following it! What is amazing to me is that the whole “woke” movement is about those issues, yet they reject the very solution to their problem!
The theme of the book of Proverbs is the gaining of wisdom. The word wisdom in the Hebrew, hokmah, was a word used to describe the skill of craftsman, singers, sailors, and councilors gained from experience. It speaks of lessons learned to develop their skill. A person who possesses hokmah in his or her spiritual life and relationship to God is one who is both knowledgeable and experienced in following the godly art of living! Wise living requires the ability to reach sound decisions and to make the right choices. Those decisions are then based upon an understanding of what is right and what is wrong, wholesome, or damaging, important or unimportant, or wise or foolish! Solomon wrote in the first chapter,
“The [reverent] fear of the LORD [that is, worshiping Him and regarding Him as truly awesome] is the beginning and the preeminent part of knowledge [its starting point and its essence]; But arrogant fools despise [skillful and godly] wisdom and instruction and self-discipline.” Proverbs 1:7 AMP
The word “self-discipline” written there clearly points to the fact that one is personally responsible for the decisions they make. You can have all the understanding in the world, and it could make no difference in your life. One must put into action the principles and understanding of the Word to dee the fruit of it in action! It is important for us to understand why we should use Proverbs to guide our daily lives. The answer can be found in the Bible as always! When God asked Solomon what he wanted he answered,
“Then Solomon said to God, “You have shown great lovingkindness and mercy to my father David, and have made me king in his place. 9Now, O LORD God, Your promise to my father David is fulfilled, for You have made me king over a people as numerous as the dust of the earth. 10Give me wisdom and knowledge, so that I may go out and come in [performing my duties] before this people, for [otherwise] who can rule and administer justice to this great people of Yours?” 11God replied to Solomon, “Because this was in your heart and you did not ask for riches, possessions or honor and personal glory, or the life of those who hate you, nor have you even asked for long life, but you have asked for wisdom and knowledge for yourself so that you may rule and administer justice to My people over whom I have made you king, 12wisdom and knowledge have been granted you. I will also give you riches, possessions, and honor, such as none of the kings who were before you has possessed nor will those who will come after you.”
2 Chronicles 1:8-12 AMP
We also read in 1 Kings,
“Now God gave Solomon [exceptional] wisdom and very great discernment and breadth of mind, like the sand of the seashore.30Solomon’s wisdom surpassed the wisdom of all the sons of the east and all the wisdom of Egypt. 31For he was wiser than all [other] men, [wiser] than Ethan the Ezrahite, and Heman, Calcol, and Darda, the sons of Mahol. His fame was known in all the surrounding nations. 32He also spoke 3,000 proverbs, and his songs were 1,005. 33He spoke of trees, from the cedar which is in Lebanon to the hyssop [vine] that grows on the wall; he spoke also of animals, of birds, of creeping things, and fish. 34People came from all the peoples (nations) to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and from all the kings of the earth who had heard of his wisdom” 1 Kings 4:29-34 AMP
I want to encourage you to daily read from the book of Proverbs, But more than that, put into action that which it commands and you will see the blessings of God poured out in your life.
Have a blessed day, Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • September 14, 2022
“Do not let your heart be troubled (afraid, cowardly). Believe [confidently] in God and trust in Him, [have faith, hold on to it, rely on it, keep going and] believe also in Me. 2In My Father’s house are many dwelling places. If it were not so, I would have told you, because I am going there to prepare a place for you. 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and I will take you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also” John 14:1-3 AMP
Just as we discussed the reality of hell, we must look to the reality of heaven! Jesus Himself told His disciples that He was going to prepare a place for them. When the resurrection took place, Jesus was here in bodily form. And in Acts chapter 9:1 we see Him physically ascend into the heavens. In heaven, those saved by God will have new bodies without the curse of sin! There will be no one who is blind, deaf or lame in heaven.
“Be strong, fear not! Indeed, your God will come with vengeance [for the ungodly]; The retribution of God will come, But He will save you.”5Then the eyes of the blind will be opened And the ears of the deaf will be unstopped. 6Then the lame will leap like a deer, And the tongue of the mute will shout for joy. For waters will break forth in the wilderness And streams in the desert.” Isaiah 35:4-6 AMP
Isaiah goes on to tells us that we will be busy in heaven,
“They will build houses and live in them; They will plant vineyards and eat the fruit” Isaiah 65:21 AMP
The most amazing and almost unbelievable fact is that the way to heaven is not complicated. Our title to heaven is given freely to those who accept that God bore our wrongs against Himself when Jesus died on the cross. When we ask Him for forgiveness and a new heart to keep His commandments, He will freely give us both. Psalm 103:19 says tells us that heaven is a place of God’s home where He rules!
“The LORD has established His throne in the heavens, And His sovereignty rules over all [the universe]. Psalm 103:19 AMP
In recording the ascension of Jesus, the Apostle Luke reveals the reality of heaven,
“who said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This [same] Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will return in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven.” Acts 1:11 AMP
In heaven all things are made new. John records in the book of Revelation,
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband” Rev 21 :1-2 AMP
There will be no tears in heaven, “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes,’ and there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:4 AMP
There will be perfect peace,
“The wolf and the lamb will graze together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox [there will no longer be predator and prey]; and dust will be the serpent’s food. They will do no evil or harm in all My holy mountain (Zion),” says the LORD.”
Isaiah 65:25 AMP
There will be fruitful gardens in what are now wastelands,
“The wilderness and the wasteland shall be glad for them, And the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose” Isiah 35:1 NKJV
This is just a small taste of what the Lord has in store for us following this place of suffering. I have always said that Satan has convinced people that they are living here and going to die while in reality we are dying here and going to live! Truly we can rest in His word given through the Apostle Paul,
“O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR VICTORY? O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR STING?”
I will encourage you today to “fear not” for God is with us and will never leave us even as we walk through the valley of death! Have a blessed day, Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • September 13, 2022
September 13, 2022
“The Nightmare Begins”
“Then these [unbelieving people] will go away into eternal (unending) punishment, but those who are righteous and in right standing with God [will go, by His remarkable grace] into eternal (unending) life.”Matthew 25:46 AMP
Since time began, man has made light of the reality of the eternal judgement of God. We often hear a description of hell as an eternal place of partying and not being under the subjective hand of God. “Who wants to sit around on a cloud all day and play a harp, I want to party!” These are only vain attempts to sooth the conscience of the nagging voice telling us something is wrong! Matthew 25 is a sobering chapter that reminds us of the impending day of accountability. We read the following spoken by Jesus,
“For to everyone who has [and values his blessings and gifts from God, and has used them wisely], more will be given, and [he will be richly supplied so that] he will have an abundance; but from the one who does not have [because he has ignored or disregarded his blessings and gifts from God], even what he does have will be taken away. 30And throw out the worthless servant into the outer darkness; in that place [of grief and torment] there will be weeping [over sorrow and pain] and grinding of teeth [over distress and anger].” Matthew 25:29-30 AMP
Hell was a place originally created for Satan and his evil cohorts! It was never to be a place on the destiny of man’s existence, yet, that is exactly where the unrepentant person will be. The Apostle John tells us that, in the end,
“And the devil who had deceived them was hurled into the lake of fire and burning brimstone (sulfur), where the beast (Antichrist) and false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night, forever and ever.” Rev 20:10 AMP
We are told that a great day of judgement is coming for every person ever born, and what will be the end for those in rebellion to God.
“And I saw a great white throne and Him who was seated upon it, from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them [for this heaven and earth are passing away]. 12And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the Book of Life; and the dead were judged according to what they had done as written in the books [that is, everything done while on earth]. 13And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and death and Hades (the realm of the dead) surrendered the dead who were in them; and they were judged and sentenced, every one according to their deeds. 14Then death and Hades [the realm of the dead] were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire [the eternal separation from God]. 15And if anyone’s name was not found [f]written in the Book of Life, he was hurled into the lake of fire.” Rev 20:11-15 AMP
Hell is a real place! The word in the Greek is Gehenna. This was the place where the garbage was dumped including the corpses of criminals. Worms bred and fed in the filth while smoke filles the place due to continually burning fires. Hell is a place of complete darkness. Jesus told His disciples that,
“while the sons and heirs of the kingdom [the descendants of Abraham who will not recognize Me as Messiah] will be thrown out into the outer darkness; in that place [which is farthest removed from the kingdom] there will be weeping [in sorrow and pain] and grinding of teeth [in distress and anger].” Matthew 8:12 AMP
In Luke 16:19-31 we get an incredible glimpse into the invisible world.
“In Hades (the realm of the dead), being in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom (paradise). 24And he cried out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus so that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in severe agony in this flame.’” Luke 18:23-24 AMP
I am often asked “how can a God of love send anyone to such a place?” The answer is quite simple. God has done everything to be sure no one ends up there, but people must make their own decision! The Bible is clear on this point.
“The Lord does not delay [as though He were unable to act] and is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is [extraordinarily] patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9 AMP
Don’t be deceived by the lackadaisical attitude of men toward the reality of hell. The decision of where you will spend eternity is not in God’s hand, but yours! Choose wisely today and receive the forgiving grace of God! Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • September 12, 2022
September 12, 2022
“The Lawless One”
“Let no one in any way deceive or entrap you, for that day will not come unless the apostasy comes first [that is, the great rebellion, the abandonment of the faith by professed Christians], and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction [the Antichrist, the one who is destined to be destroyed], 4who opposes and exalts himself [so proudly and so insolently] above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he [actually enters and] takes his seat in the temple of God, publicly proclaiming that he himself is God.”
2 Thessalonians 2:3-4 AMP
Disney studios has just released a children’s cartoon about a woman who was impregnated by Satan and bears a daughter who is the antichrist. 13 years old, she is trying to live a normal life. Can I say HELLO! It is no laughing matter! This is an outright attempt to downplay the reality of a monster who is already in the process of destroying humanity. In the book of Revelation, we clearly see the ungodly structure of Satan’s plan in the last days. There is Satan (acting as God) controlling the beast, the antichrist, (acting as Jesus even with a fake resurrection) and who is in league with the false prophet (acting as the Holy Spirit forcing people to worship this unholy trinity). While the Holy Trinity is characterized by infinite truth, love, and goodness, the unholy trinity portrays the diametrically opposite traits of deception, hatred, and unadulterated evil.
Do not be deceived or dissuaded about the truth of Satan’s plan.
The word “antichrist” appears in the Bible five times, all in the writings of the Apostle John. It literally means “against Christ.” It can be used in a general sense of anyone who denies the reality of the true Christ. The Apostle wrote that,
“and every spirit that does not confess Jesus [acknowledging that He has come in the flesh, but would deny any of the Son’s true nature] is not of God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming, and is now already in the world.” 1 John 4:3 AMP
Notice that he connects denying the truth to the “spirit” of the antichrist. For sure we can see that spirit at work today in government, society, the educational system, and in the lives of people. There is a growing hatred toward the things and name of God in the world today. We as children of God will always bring light to the dark places around us showing things for what they really are. We are told that in the last days there would be a great delusion over people so as not to accept the things of God.
“For the mystery of lawlessness [rebellion against divine authority and the coming reign of lawlessness] is already at work; [but it is restrained] only until he who now restrains it is taken out of the way. 8Then the lawless one [the Antichrist] will be revealed and the Lord Jesus will slay him with the breath of His mouth and bring him to an end by the appearance of His coming.” 2 Thessalonians 2:7-8 AMP
The person that most people associate the antichrist with is the beast revealed in Revelation 13 and Daniel 7. The beast comes out of the sea, which typically in the Bible refers to the Gentile nations. He also has seven heads and ten horns, indicating his connection to and indwelling by Satan. The ten horns indicate ten seats of world government that will provide power to the Antichrist, three of which will be totally yielded to or taken over by the Antichrist (Daniel 7:8). The number ten also indicates completion or totality, in other words, a one-world government. The one-world government will be blasphemous, denying the true God.
The final kingdom will possess traits in common with the former “beast kingdoms” of Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and particularly Rome (rev 13:2; Daniel 7:7,23; Revelation 13:3 seems to indicate that the Antichrist will be mortally wounded about halfway through the Tribulation, but Satan will miraculously heal his wound (Rev 13:3; 17:8-14) After this wondrous false resurrection, the world will be totally enthralled by the Antichrist. They will worship Satan and the Antichrist himself. The Antichrist becomes emboldened, and, dispensing with all pretenses of being a peaceful ruler, he openly blasphemes God, breaks his peace treaty with the Jews, attacks believers and the Jews, and desecrates the rebuilt Jewish temple, setting himself up as the one to be worshiped (Rev 13:4-7; Matthew 24:15.) This event has been called the setting of the Abomination of Desolation.
Again, I warn you not to be deceived by the lies of the enemy! All of God’s Word is true and understandable when not confused with the worthless arguments of man. I encourage you as you see the sun setting on humanity trim your lamp and fill your oil for the Bridegroom is at hand!
Have a blessed and victorious day! Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • September 11, 2022
“By the word of the Lord, we declare to you that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who have fallen asleep. 16For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a loud command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will be the first to rise. 17After that, we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will always be with the Lord.” 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 AMP
There is much discussion about the intentions of the Holy Spirit as He peened these verses through the Apostle Paul. Chapter 4 of 1st Thessalonians deals heavily with the life of the believer. It opens with the exhortation,
“Finally, brothers, we ask and encourage you in the Lord Jesus to live in a way that is pleasing to God, just as you have received from us. This is how you already live, so you should do so all the more. 2For you know the instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 4:1-2 AMP
The Epistle goes on to list things that are relevant to the behavior and actions of the Christian in this life. Just like in today’s culture, many of the exhortations are counterculture to in its application. In a culture dictated by hedonistic, and humanistic trends, the focus is always on what “I get or deserve” that will give “me” pleasure. The exhortation of the Apostle is to look out for the other and not oneself! It is very clear that while we live by God’s grace, we are expected to reflect the One who saved us. Look at verse 3 and 7,
“For it is God’s will that you should be holy: You must abstain from sexual immorality”
1 Thessalonians 4:3 AMP
“For God has not called us to impurity, but to holiness. 8Anyone, then, who rejects this command does not reject man but God, the very One who gives you His Holy Spirit.” 1 Thessalonians 4:7 AMP
The chapter ends with a word of encouragement to the believer that their efforts at holiness will not be in vain! we are reminded that even though the surrounding culture is living in rebellion to God’s ways, there is a day coming when things will be made right! The issue of the rapture of the church is understood because of the reasons for the coming judgement. The book of Romans tells us that,
“For [God does not overlook sin and] the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who in their wickedness suppress and stifle the truth,” Romans 1:18 AMP
God’s wrath is poured out because unrighteousness and ungodliness as practiced by sinful man. Romans chapter 5 tells us that,
“But God clearly shows and proves His own love for us, by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9Therefore, since we have now been justified [declared free of the guilt of sin] by His blood, [how much more certain is it that] we will be saved from the wrath of God through Him.” Romans 5:8-9 AMP
Do you see it? Look at verse 9! We are now free from the guilt of sin through Jesus’ shed blood! That means that the wrath of God against our sin was placed on Christ, so our account is now balanced with God! Now, what is the reason for the coming judgment of the unbeliever? Look at John 3:36,
“He who believes and trusts in the Son and accepts Him [as Savior] has eternal life [that is, already possesses it]; but he who does not believe the Son and chooses to reject Him, [disobeying Him and denying Him as Savior] will not see [eternal] life, but [instead] the wrath of God hangs over him continually.” John 3:36 AMP
The great tribulation that will come upon the earth will be against those who have not received the reconciling blood of Christ. It doesn’t make sense that God would forgive us and then again pour out His wrath against us! That would make the effective, everlasting power of Jesus blood of no value!
Our great comfort is that we are forgiven and loved by God. There is no good reason for the believer to suffer through the judgement of the unbeliever. If that were the case, then we are adding to our salvation by our own suffering and that is contrary to the grace of God!
Have a blessed day, Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • August 25, 2022
“By faith Abraham, when he was called [by God], obeyed by going to a place which he was to receive as an inheritance; and he went, not knowing where he was going. 9By faith he lived as a foreigner in the promised land, as in a strange land, living in tents [as nomads] with Isaac and Jacob, who were fellow heirs of the same promise. 10For he was [waiting expectantly and confidently] looking forward to the city which has foundations, [an eternal, heavenly city] whose architect and builder is God.” Hebrews 11:8-10 AMP
We have all experienced the frustration of a long journey. It sems like the road goes on, and on, and on without end! But this is the perfect example of life! In the above mentioned verse the example of a life of faith and obedience is explained. Abraham simply believed God and trusted that there was something better in store. The Scripture tells more than once mentions that,
“For what does the Scripture say? “ABRAHAM BELIEVED IN (trusted, relied on) GOD, AND IT WAS CREDITED TO HIS ACCOUNT AS RIGHTEOUSNESS (right living, right standing with God).” Romans 4:3 AMP; Galatians 3:6; James 2:3
There is a promise that we are on a journey to a new homeland where things will be as they were originally created to be! This promise can be traced from the very beginning of creation. Once he creates Adam and Eve, he makes this purpose explicit to them, giving them four tasks. The first task is to “be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth” (Gen 1:26) Related to this first command, he also tells them, secondly, to “subdue [the earth]” and have dominion over it. (Gen 1:27). In chapter two, he gives them two further commands, to “work and keep” the garden and to obey his law (Gen 2:15). Already, then, before the Fall, God has a goal for his creation – to be filled with, ruled by, and cultivated by his obedient image bearers. It didn’t take long for the problems to start. Adam and Eve rebelled against God and lost the perfection and beauty that was theirs for the having.
As a result, the other two tasks, multiplying and cultivating, are detrimentally affected by sin. Women will now have pain in childbearing, and they will also be at odds with their husbands (making conception, much less childbirth, rather difficult; Gen 3:16). Adam, on the other hand, is told that he, along with his descendants, will only be able to draw thorns and thistles from the ground (Gen 3:18), not the green plants that were abundant in the garden and given to them for food (Gen 1:30). The ground is also “cursed” because of their sin (Gen 3:17), death enters the world (Gen 3:19), and Adam and Eve are removed from God’s presence (Gen 3:24). But hope was not lost! God promises to restore what was lost through the “seed of the woman.” In the book of Genesis, chapters 12, 15, 17, God Gives again the promise to Abraham.
As we watch the story of salvation unfold, we see God’s hand working. From the Exodus from Egypt, the entrance into the promised land, the establishing of the Davidic line, and a host of other numerous events, people and places, God is making a way for the restoration of man and creation to be recreated in His image once again. Jesus, God incarnate, begins this long-awaited kingdom in His first coming. What could not be done from Adam to Jesus, the forgiveness of the transgression, was about to be taken care of once and for all! Jesus obeys God where Adam failed, and He now give us the power to obey the Father through the Holy Spirit. His first coming gives us a small taste of that which is to come!
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away (vanished), and there is no longer any sea. 2And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, arrayed like a bride adorned for her husband; 3and then I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “See! The tabernacle of God is among men, and He will live among them, and they will be His people, and God Himself will be with them [as their God,] 4and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be death; there will no longer be sorrow and anguish, or crying, or pain; for the former order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:1-4 AMP
My friends, like Abraham we are just on a journey passing through this desert land called life! We are looking for the day when righteousness and justice will truly be restored! We should, Like Abraham, always remind ourselves that we are simply occupying this body, like a tent, until we reach that new land. There were many victories and failures along the journey for God’s people, but God has, and always will, remain faithful to His promise to bring us home!
Have a blessed journey today! Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • August 22, 2022
“Jesus said to him, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” Luke 22:43 AMP
Death can be a frightening prospect for those who are without an assurance of the promises of Christ. I am very thankful for the atoning blood of Christ that cleansed me from my sin and its hold over my life. I am also grateful that the work of Christ didn’t stop there! The resurrection of Jesus Christ proved without a shadow of a doubt that death had finally been defeated! The book of Revelation tells us,
“When I saw Him, I fell at His feet as though dead. And He placed His right hand on me and said, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last [absolute Deity, the Son of God], 18and the Ever-living One [living in and beyond all time and space]. I died, but see, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of [absolute control and victory over] death and of Hades (the realm of the dead).” Revelation 1:17-18 AMP
An important question always comes up as to what happens when the spirt departs this fleshly container? Well, as always, we go to the Word of God for the answer! A starting point is the cross. That day Jesus said to thief hanging beside him, “today you will be with me in paradise.” There are 2 camps generally that people fall into. The first is that of soul sleep or a holding area where someone goes until they pay for sins or someone else buys them out. The great reformist Martin Luther in his book “Here I stand,” quoted the “soul seller” mantra, “When a coin in the coffer rings, another soul from hell it springs!” It was one of the issues that caused him to look at the Scriptures and realize it did not support penance but rather repentance! If, we still need to pay for our sin, the blood of Christ then is ineffective and not sufficient! The Scripture is clear in this point,
“Every priest stands [at his altar of service] ministering daily, offering the same sacrifices over and over, which are never able [b]to strip away sins [that envelop and cover us]; 12whereas Christ, having offered the one sacrifice [the all-sufficient sacrifice of Himself] for sins for all time, SAT DOWN [signifying the completion of atonement for sin] AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD [the position of honor],
Hebrews 10:11-12 AMP
“For by the one offering He has perfected forever and completely cleansed those who are being sanctified [bringing each believer to spiritual completion and maturity]. 15And the Holy Spirit also adds His testimony to us [in confirmation of this]; for after having said, 16“THIS IS THE COVENANT THAT I WILL MAKE WITH THEM AFTER THOSE DAYS, SAYS THE LORD: I WILL IMPRINT MY LAWS UPON THEIR HEART, AND ON THEIR MIND I WILL INSCRIBE THEM [producing an inward change],” Hebrews 10:14-16 AMP
Look carefully at those verses. Nowhere does it imply that you or anyone else is able to deal with your sin other than Jesus Christ. It is a mockery of the cross to imply or teach anything else! And what is the guarantee we have that what we read is true? The witness of the Holy Spirit!
“For as many as are the promises of God, in Christ they are [all answered] “Yes.” So through Him we say our “Amen” to the glory of God. 21Now it is God who establishes and confirms us [in joint fellowship] with you in Christ, and who has anointed us [empowering us with the gifts of the Spirit]; 22it is He who has also put His seal on us [that is, He has appropriated us and certified us as His] and has given us the [Holy] Spirit in our hearts as a pledge [like a security deposit to guarantee the fulfillment of His promise of eternal life].” 2 Corinthians 1:20-22 AMP
There is need for the redeemed believer to fear the transition into the eternal realm! Remember the Psalms says, “yea though I WALK through the valley of death…!” I doesn’t say sleep through, hope someone pays or prays me through, or until I suffer enough to make it through! Allow the comforting hand of the Holy Spirit rest on your shoulder for we have not any idea of the great things in store for eye has not seen nor ear heard, and no human mind conceived the thing God has prepared for those who love Him!
Have a blessed day! Pastor Ken
Kenneth Dalessandro • August 21, 2022
“Now we do not want you to be uninformed, believers, about those who are asleep [in death], so that you will not grieve [for them] as the others do who have no hope [beyond this present life].” 1 Thessalonians 4:13 AMP
Al of humanity faces a universal dilemma – we will all some day die! Regardless of race, culture, social status or religion, every person knows the final outcome of this life. There is nothing we can do to delay avoid, or ignore it, the end of this life will come for each of us. The Scripture tell us that,
“And just as it is appointed and destined for all men to die once and after this [comes certain] judgment,” Hebrews 9:27 AMP
In the Scripture, human life and death is not synonyms for being and not being, but references two kinds of existence. Death is essentially the separation of the s[spirit from the physical body passing from this existence to another! Our individual consciousness continues, but in a new place and condition. Again, we read in the Word that there is a time after this life that we will “know fully!”
“For now [in this time of imperfection] we see in a mirror dimly [a blurred reflection, a riddle, an enigma], but then [when the time of perfection comes, we will see reality] face to face. Now I know in part [just in fragments], but then I will know fully, just as I have been fully known [by God].” 1 Corinthians 13:12 AMP
Man was not created to die but rather to be an eternal being. Death entered the stream of man when Adam and Eve sinned and fellowship with God was broken.
“Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, so death spread to all people [no one being able to stop it or escape its power], because they all sinned.” Romans 5:12 AMP
The good news is that Christ defeated death by returning to life. The book of Hebrews tells us in Chapter 2,
“Therefore, since [these His] children share in flesh and blood [the physical nature of mankind], He Himself in a similar manner also shared in the same [physical nature, but without sin], so that through [experiencing] death He might make powerless (ineffective, impotent) him who had the power of death--that is, the devil-- 15and [that He] might free all those who through [the haunting] fear of death were held in slavery throughout their lives.” Hebrews 2:14-15 AMP
Death was stocking us before we came to the cross! Jesus removed the sting of death so we can now live confidently and patiently serving Him! Paul reminded the church at Corinth,
“For this perishable [part of us] must put on the imperishable [nature], and this mortal [part of us that is capable of dying] must put on immortality [which is freedom from death]. 54And when this perishable puts on the imperishable, and this mortal puts on immortality, then the Scripture will be fulfilled that says, “DEATH IS SWALLOWED UP in victory (vanquished forever). 55O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR VICTORY? O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR STING?”
1 Corinthians 53-55 AMP
Because He conquered death and the devil, He now controls the power of death in His own hands! As a result, Christ can and does give us eternal life. Your eternal life doesn’t begin the moment that you leave the body but at the moment that you receive Jesus Christ as you Lord and Savior!
“I assure you and most solemnly say to you, the person who hears My word [the one who heeds My message], and believes and trusts in Him who sent Me, has (possesses now) eternal life [that is, eternal life actually begins—the believer is transformed], and does not come into judgment and condemnation, but has passed [over] from death into life.” John 5:24 AMP
Begin today to enter the eternal life that He purchased for you and enjoy the Kingdom of God among us! Have a blessed day, PK