If you could build a house for Jesus, if He asked you to build a house for Him, what would it look like? How big would it be? What would the floor plan be like? How would you furnish and decorate it? How much would it cost you? Or how much money would you spend on His house? For us who really love our Lord, we doubtless would spare no expense to build Jesus as lavish a mansion as we could possibly afford. If money wasn’t an issue or a limitation with us, we would build Him the best and the nicest mansion that money can buy. And we’d put it on a huge estate like the ones that kings and royalties have.

What if, instead of building Him a house, Jesus wanted to come and live with us in our house. What would we do to our house to make it truly fit for a King? You’d probably spend a lot of time cleaning the place up, maybe even remodeling it, so that Jesus would have a nice, clean, house to live in. You’d make sure that Jesus had the nicest room in the house.

On somewhat of a related note, I’m one who likes to drop by unannounced to pay you a visit. I know it’s a courteous thing to call in advance and see if it’s alright to drop by. But I wasn’t brought up that way. Everybody on the island was like me: you visited family and friends without an invitation or advance notice. We valued your presence and visit! And it didn’t matter to us, or them, what our house happened to look like at the moment. We were just glad you dropped by for a visit.

Now that I’m stateside and married to a Caucasian, I’ve learned that dropping by unexpectedly just isn’t nice: it doesn’t give the woman of the house a chance to clean the place up. A woman wants to make sure her house is nice and clean when company comes. A clean house gives people a good impression of a woman as being a good housekeeper.

The point is, we want our house to be nice, clean, and presentable for company. When that company happens to be someone who’s important, powerful, famous, or rich (like a politician, entertainer, or professional athlete), we work extra hard and long to make sure our place is as immaculate as possible.

I understand that God might not be as consumed about the presentability of our house as we are. He was, after all, born in a stable. A feeding trough was His crib. In this way, He really wasn’t picky about where He was born or lived.

But I’m sure Joseph and Mary took whatever time they had to clean the stable and trough. There was no way there were going to let their newborn Baby lie in a filthy bed!

The point is, we want to make sure that Jesus lives in as nice and as clean a house as possible. No way are we going to let Him stay in a pig sty of a home!

Some of you, perhaps many of us, can breathe a sigh of relief that Jesus Himself isn’t dropping by for a visit. Some aren’t comfortable with the idea of Jesus coming to see where we live and how we live. We wouldn’t want Jesus staying too long, much less living with us, because, well, we just can’t be on our best behavior for that long a period of time! We can’t do some of the things we normally do (like watch a smutty TV show) as long as we know Jesus is around. We’d have to watch our language and cut out the profanity that comes so easily to a lot of professing Christians.

Would it trouble or alarm you if I told you that, while Jesus isn’t here bodily to pay us a visit, He nevertheless is here in Spirit to pay us a visit? He’s here not just to visit us, but to actually live and stay with us! He said in John 14:23, All who love Me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and We will come and make Our home with each of them.

The word home is an interesting one. It literally means what it means: a place to live, a home. There’s nothing cryptic about the word. What’s so interesting about it to me is it’s the same word Jesus used in John 14:2. A lot of translations say, In my Father’s house are many rooms. For those of you who grew up with the King James Version, In my Father’s house are many mansions. The words rooms, mansions, and home are all one and same word in the original Greek text of Scripture.

Let me put it together for you. In John 14:2, Jesus is going home to the Father in Heaven so that He can prepare a room, a home, or a mansion, for us. Wow! Jesus is building a place for us! Can you possibly imagine what our house or room will look like after Jesus is done getting it ready? The streets of Heaven are made of gold. The gates of the City are made of pearl. The foundations are made with all sorts of precious gems or stones. The richest people on Earth can’t hold a stick to Jesus when it comes to building the best!

While Jesus is busy getting our homes ready, through His Holy Spirit, both He and the Father are dwelling inside us. Our body is Their room, home, or mansion! Yikes! Jesus really is living with us! He’s staying in our house!

Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 6:19 that our bodies are the Temple of the Holy Spirit. Like a mansion, house, or Temple, our body is where the Father and Son live in Spirit.

So what does our house look like? I’m talking about our body. But not just our body, but our mind, our heart, our thoughts, desires, and passions. We said all along that, if Jesus wanted to come visit us, or live with us, we would clean house and make sure our house is so totally clean, immaculate, and nice for Jesus. Well, Jesus is living with us in Spirit. He’s living in our body. Our body is His house. It’s His mansion. We wouldn’t think of letting Jesus live in a pig sty of a house. Let’s not have Him live in a dirty, filthy body!

How does our house become dirty? We don’t clean it. We make a mess without cleaning up after ourselves. We’re not organized: we leave things wherever we want to without putting them in their proper place. We don’t wash what needs washed. We don’t take the time, some of us are just too tired or lazy, to keep our house looking nice and clean all the time. We don’t pick up, or take out, the trash. We don’t fix what’s broken. We pretty much  don’t do anything to the house except mess it up. Mostly, we don’t care what our house looks like.

It’s the same way with our body. Some people don’t care what they body looks like. They let their appetites go uncontrolled, eating a lot, eating what’s not healthy or good for the body; drinking and ingesting stuff that, over time and repeated intake, become poison. The unhealthy stuff that we eat and drink, after years of not caring or not being temperate, makes our body sick and diseased. We don’t exercise, lose weight, or eat healthy. We’re too lazy to take good care of our body. All we do is mess it up. A lot of us don’t care about what we’re doing to our body.

Then there’s the spiritual side of our body. We allow all sorts of bad, dirty, wicked thoughts and desires to enter and stay in our mind. We adopt a way of thinking that really is perverse and abominable in God’s sight. Like pigs frolicking in the mud, we like being human—that is being carnal, selfish, and sinful—that the thought of cleaning up our heart and mind, being righteous, and living a holy Christian life, just has no desire or appeal to us. We say we’re Christians. But, like our house and body, we’re too lazy to be a good Christian.

So let me ask you in closing. Since Jesus is living inside you, in your body, how are you taking care of your body? What are you doing to your body? Are you cleaning it up? Are you content to let Jesus live in the pig sty that you’ve made for yourself?

I hope not. Jesus is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He’s fit to live in the nicest, cleanest, most beautiful house that money can buy and that men can build. Take a good, long look at your body, your appetites, the way you treat, or mistreat and abuse, your body. Look at how you’ve furnished your body—all the thoughts, desires, and ambitions that you’ve put in your heart and mind. Don’t you think it’s time, in a manner of speaking, to clean the place up, maybe even build Jesus a mansion that’s worthy of Him? Like Paul said in Romans 12:2, And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him.

Does God find your house, your body, acceptable? See your body as Jesus’ mansion. If you want Jesus living in the mansion you’ve got, fine. But, in your heart of hearts, if you haven’t taken the time to clean the place up, make it beautiful, and appealing to Him; then start right now with the demolition and remodel. Build Him a home that He’d love to stay in. Build Him the best because He’s worthy of the best. Besides that,  He’s building the best for you.


You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.  (6)  Though He was God, He did not think of equality with God as something to cling to.  (7)  Instead, He gave up His divine privileges; He took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When He appeared in human form,  (8)  He humbled Himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross, Philippians 2:5-8.

Most of you who know me well know that I don’t believe Jesus was born on Christmas. That doesn’t make me a heretic or a radical. And, just so you know that I’m so totally fair and honest with the facts, let me hasten to say that no one, but no one, ‘cept God Himself, knows exactly when Jesus was born. Having said that, however, the preponderance of Biblical testimony points to Jesus’ birth in the fall, sometime in late September thru October. But definitely not anywhere near December 25. It isn’t a big deal to me and it’s not worth fighting over. But I just happen to believe that if we Christians are gonna stand for the truth and insist that our beliefs, actions, and lifestyle be in accordance with the truth; then we’d be a lot closer to the truth if we celebrated Christ’s birth in the fall.

Having said that, today is Christmas 2013 and I started thinking about what ran through Jesus’ mind when the Father came to Him one day in Heaven’s glory and said, Son, I’ve got a plan to save mankind. But in order to do that you’re gonna have to go down to Earth, become a human being, and eventually die a very painful and humiliating death on a Roman cross. It’s a lot to ask, I know. But think about it and get back with me, okay?

Jesus was God. And, being God, He knew the end from the beginning. He knew what His life on Earth would be like before He even took His first breath as a human being. Think of the incomparable grandeur of Heaven’s palace. Now think of a stable with smelly animals; the poo and filth that’s typical of a stable. Think about rags for a robe. Then think about having to obey a very imperfect mom and dad. The Father’s the only Person He’s ever obeyed and had to obey. Think about being made fun of, being ridiculed, rejected, and called a deceiver. People even called Him the devil! Think of being pushed around, slapped, whipped, tortured, and made a public spectacle as He was nailed to the cross. I can imagine the pain and humiliation He must have felt. But the thing that I can’t imagine is Him bearing our sins, taking the punishment for them, and suffering the abandonment of His Father while He hung on the cross. The Father had never done that before. I know what it’s like having God feel so distant, so silent, so absent, from my life. I’m sure you too know the feeling. And you know it’s just plain dreadful not having God anywhere near. I would dread that so much that, if God ever abandoned me, I’d rather die right there on the spot than live a second more without His presence and love.

Anyhow, I think about all this and I know that Jesus knew full well what He’d be getting into if He consented to the Father’s plan. But, wonders of all wonders, He agreed to it and became one of us. Why? Because that’s how much He loved us and wanted to save us. But, love aside, Jesus was so totally submitted and obedient to the Father that even if it meant being humiliated and killed at the hands of sinful men, He was gonna obey the Father no matter what. He was gonna obey even if it killed Him.

Each one of us is at a level or a point of obedience. There are some things that we would obey God in. And truthfully, there are some things that we just won’t do for God. There’s no way we would obey God. Some would rather die than obey God in a certain matter or area of life.

I look at Christ. He was so totally willing to obey.  Psalms 40:6-8 puts it this way: You take no delight in sacrifices or offerings. Now that You have made me listen, I finally understand—You don’t require burnt offerings or sin offerings.  (7)  Then I said, “Look, I have come. As is written about me in the Scriptures:  (8)  I take joy in doing Your will, my God, for Your instructions are written on my heart.”

Back in the youthful days of my generation Andrae Crouch was the biggest name in Gospel music. One of the songs he sang was entitled Yes, Lord, yes. The lyrics go like this: I’ll say Yes, Lord, yes; To your will and to your way; I’ll say yes, Lord, yes; I will trust you and obey; When your Spirit speaks to me; With my whole heart I’ll agree; And my answer will be yes, Lord, yes.

How about you, dear friend? How far along are you in your obedience to God? Are you willing to obey God even if it kills you? Are you ready to live for God? Ready to live in obedience to God in everything He asks and requires of you? If your answer, like mine, is Yes, Lord, yes, can you prove it? Like Christ, when you make obeying and pleasing God your life’s desire and ambition, you’ll find that obedience really isn’t as hard as we’ve made it out to be. God gives grace to enable obedience. I pray that for the rest of this year and the coming year God will shower you with His grace and that you’ll experience His love, His presence, and His favor.


If you’re anything like me, I know you like to be sure about things. We like to be confident, knowledgeable, and self-assured. We like being right about things. And when we know we’re right a lot of us savor a fight, a show-down, to prove we’re right.

I just hate it when I’m not sure! Worse yet, I hate it when I work hard to make sure I’m sure and, after all the time and effort trying, I still end up not being sure at all.

Like I said, we like being confident about things. We don’t like the unknown. We want to know what’s real and true. We want to be right. Believing we’re right is nice. But it’s not enough. We want to know beyond all shadow of a doubt that we’re right.

But as commendable as that desire may be, the down side of being sure is this. Being sure isn’t necessarily the same thing as being right. It’s nice to be sure. But just because we’re sure doesn’t automatically mean we’re right.

That sounds oxymoronic, doesn’t it? After all, we equate being sure with being right. We like being sure! And when we’re sure about something we automatically assume we’re right.

But are we really? Not necessarily. Not always. Think about it. Dig into the vast hard drive of your memory and see if you can recall a time when you thought you were right, but weren’t. While you ponder on your own life’s experiences I’ll like for us to look at a life experience of a mortal such as ourselves. His name is Hananiah.

Now Hananiah was a prophet in Judah. He lived during a very tumultuous time in Jewish history. The  Babylonians have attacked and subjugated the Jews.  Jerusalem has been plundered. The rich and the noble, along with tens of thousands of Jews, have been carried away captive to Babylonia. Only a few were left behind in Jerusalem. Through the Babylonian King’s good grace, a Jewish King was installed and allowed to rule in Jerusalem. There were three such kings and the last of these was King Zedekiah.

Anyways, throughout this whole ordeal—even before the Babylonians descended on Jerusalem—the prophet Jeremiah, among other faithful prophets of the Lord, advised the King to surrender to the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar and avoid needless bloodshed. Judah’s fall and captivity was ordained of the Lord and any resistance to Nebuchadnezzar would be futile.

Naturally, the prophet’s advice didn’t go over well. It was treasonous and unpatriotic, to say the least. And besides, there were prophets aplenty who advised the King to disregard Jeremiah’s doom-and-gloom approach to life.

Hananiah was one of these prophets. Four years into Zedekiah’s eleven-year reign, Hananiah stood up in the Temple and prophesied aloud, Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: I have broken the yoke of the king of Babylon.  (3)  Within two years I will bring back to this place all the vessels of the Lord’s house, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took away from this place and carried to Babylon.  (4)  I will also bring back to this place Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and all the exiles from Judah who went to Babylon, declares the Lord, for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon (Jeremiah 28:2-4).

Wow! This was great news! It was exactly what the nation needed to hear in such dismal, depressing times. Even Jeremiah jumped with elation and declared, Amen, Hananiah! May your words come true indeed!

But Jeremiah knew better. He’d heard from the Lord and what the Lord told him stood in stark contrast to Hananiah’s uplifting prophecy of hope. Yet hear now this word that I speak in your hearing and in the hearing of all the people.  (8)  The prophets who preceded you and me from ancient times prophesied war, famine, and pestilence against many countries and great kingdoms.  (9)  As for the prophet who prophesies peace, when the word of that prophet comes to pass, then it will be known that the Lord has truly sent the prophet (Jeremiah 28:7-9).

Here were two men of God with two very different, conflicting, prophecies. Both prophets claimed to speak for the Lord. Both preceded their prophecies with a thus saith the Lord. And both men were utterly sure of themselves!

In fact, Hananiah was so sure that he was right that he took the yoke that Jeremiah wore around his neck and he broke it and said, Thus says the Lord: Even so will I break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all the nations within two years (Jeremiah 28:11).

How did Hananiah get to this point of confidence and assurance? He was so sure of himself!

Yet, we know in hindsight, he was miserably, tragically, wrong.

Sometime after the prophet Hananiah had broken the yoke-bars from off the neck of Jeremiah the prophet, the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah:  (13)  “Go, tell Hananiah, ‘Thus says the Lord: You have broken wooden bars, but you have made in their place bars of iron.  (14)  For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: I have put upon the neck of all these nations an iron yoke to serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and they shall serve him, for I have given to him even the beasts of the field.'”  (15)  And Jeremiah the prophet said to the prophet Hananiah, “Listen, Hananiah, the Lord has not sent you, and you have made this people trust in a lie.  (16)  Therefore thus says the Lord: ‘Behold, I will remove you from the face of the earth. This year you shall die, because you have uttered rebellion against the Lord’ (Jeremiah 28:12-16).

In two months’ time, Hananiah was dead (Jeremiah 28:1, 17).

Hananiah was so sure of himself! But he was wrong in spite of the fact that he was sure! Which is to say, it’s possible to be wrong about something that you’re sure about.

Don’t get me wrong here because I’m not knocking being sure. I think we all should be sure, if not absolutely sure and confident, about the things we believe, the decisions we make, and the actions we take.

What I’m asking is, What makes us so sure about the things we’re sure about? How do we get to this point of surety, confidence, and certainty?

  • We can have the facts to back us up. The evidence. The proof. But the facts, evidence, and proof can be misleading. They can be mis-interpreted. Tampered with. The people who supply us with the facts, the evidence, and the proof can distort and manipulate the truth. People lie in order to conceal the truth.
  • Circumstances can be so convincing and fool us into faith and surety.
  • A person with charisma inspires confidence. But charisma is a poor determinant of the truth. Ever heard of Jim (James Warren) Jones?
  • Majority opinion or the unanimous voice of others can fill us with confidence and boldness. But people can be wrong and the majority likewise. The majority and unanimity of the masses are not a reliable gauge of truth or right.
  • Many of us go by logic. If it makes sense, then it’s right and true.
  • If it’s scientific or if it can be scientifically proven, then it’s right and true.
  • Sometimes, wealth and power imbue us with confidence.

If you do what I just did, that is, stop and think about all the ways you get confident and become sure of yourself; I think you’ll understand the basis, source, or reason for your confidence. And you can gauge the real strength or weakness of your confidence.

So let’s look at the diversity of opinions and beliefs that we’re confronted with. The atheist mocks and decries the existence of God. The Satanist insists Satan is God. The evolutionist has a scientific explanation for the origin and diversity of life. The rationalist has an air-tight logical argument against faith. The secularist disproves the Bible. The skeptic insists there’s no heaven or hell or judgment. The ecumenicalist claims all roads, all religions, lead to God. Each religionist adamantly insists that his religion is the only true, right religion. The Christian sticks by the Bible and decries everyone else to be wrong, deceived, and damned.

Each one, like Hananiah, is so sure of himself. There is no entertaining the possibility of being wrong. No matter what each one of us believes, we’re sure about what we believe. And because we’re sure, then we’re right.

But, as in the contrast between Jeremiah and Hananiah, two persons with two very divergent and contradictory views can’t both be equally true or right. One is true and one is false. One is right and one is wrong.

So how do we tell who’s right or wrong? Jeremiah said, As for the prophet who prophesies peace, when the word of that prophet comes to pass, then it will be known that the Lord has truly sent the prophet (Jeremiah 28:9). In other words, when what we believe or say comes to pass—or doesn’t—then we’ll know who’s right and who’s wrong.

You’ve heard of the adage, you’ll just have to wait and see. In other words, we won’t really know for sure until it happens. Or doesn’t. It’s like God’s saying, Okay. If you won’t believe Me or the Bible, I guess you’ll just have to wait and see who’s right and who’s wrong.

How long must we wait? Well, when it comes to proving the existence of God, of heaven, and hell; or disproving it; when it comes to proving the truthfulness of the Bible, or disproving it; we’ll all have to wait till we die to know for sure. If perchance we awake after death and find ourselves face to face with God, then we’ll know that Christians got it right after all. If we live on after death and find ourselves standing before Buddha, then we’ll know that all the world should have listened to Buddha and none other. If we don’t awake after death and aren’t conscious in some other world or kind of existence, then we’ll all know that the atheists were right after all.

But, until history or reality proves us right or wrong, we nevertheless press on with a remarkable confidence that we’re right. How can we be confident in something that hasn’t yet been proven right or hasn’t yet come to pass?  Say what you will, but I say this. Until we’re proven right or wrong, we only believe we right. All confidence and surety is a matter of faith. The Christian, the atheist, the evolutionist, the rationalist, and all the others—whether they will admit it or not—only believe they’re right. They can’t prove it until history or reality proves them right or wrong.

I’m a Christian. I believe unfailingly in the Divine inspiration and inerrancy of the Bible. And I believe the Bible is always right. I would like to say I believe I’m right. I’m not gonna say I’m right because I’m honest enough to say that there’s been times when I’ve been wrong. Even when it comes to the Scriptures, there have been times when I believed I was right, I was Biblical; but was later shown to be unscriptural and wrong. So the most I will say at this time is, I believe I’m right.

The point is, our confidence or assurance, that state of being absolutely sure and adamantly convinced, is a matter of faith.

You can believe in your logic, your science, your religion, or whatever it is you firmly believe. I’ll stick to my faith in God and the Bible. We are all persons of faith. We’re all alike in this one respect. But, unfortunately, we’re not all right. You may think otherwise and be absolutely convinced you’re right. Hananiah was similarly convinced. And if I’ve succeeded in showing you anything, I hope you’ll see in all honesty—both from the Scriptures and from your very own life’s experiences—that  it’s possible to be sure and still not be right. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.



Matthew 12:43-45,  When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none.  (44)  Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.  (45)  Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.


In the post-modern world in which we live, a lot of people, including Christians, deny the reality and existence of demons. They allege that demon possession is a myth and fairy tale that people in an unenlightened age invented to explain abnormal human behavior.

But the fact that (1) Jesus taught on demonic possession; (2) Jesus spent a huge portion of His time casting demons out of demon possessed people; (3) Jesus commissioned us to cast demons out of people (Matthew 10:8, Mark 16:17); and (4) the early church cast demons out of people (Acts 5:16, 16:16-18); all tell us that demonic possession is very real. It happens. And I’ve got news for you: it’s still happening to this very day. I’ve cast demons out of Christians and these Christians will be the first to tell you that it’s possible for people today to be possessed.

Anyways, when a demon is cast out of a person it goes thru dry, arid, waterless places looking for rest. In ancient history, deserts were known to be habitations of demons.

Anyways, this cast out demon goes thru waterless places looking for rest. Now you’d think that out in the desert where there’s nothing to do there’ll be lots of time for a demon to kick back and relax. We equate rest with sleep or leisure, taking a break from working. But for a demon, rest is not inactivity or not working. In fact, it’s the complete opposite. Rest, for a demon, is to be busy possessing and afflicting a human being. Demons don’t like it when they’re not living inside people and oppressing them.

So this demon decides to return to the person that he was cast out of. You see, when a demon is cast out of you, you need to know that this demon is going to want you back. He’s not going off to possess someone else–not if he can help it. This demon wants you because he knows you pretty well. He knows your weakness. He knows which of your buttons to push to get you to do some pretty shameful, wicked stuff. This demon knows you, he loves you, he wants you, and he’s coming back for you.

Now when the demon comes back, he finds you empty, swept, and garnished (verse 44). You know how a lot of renters will totally trash a house out. When they leave, you go in there and look dishearteningly at the mess that you’ve got to clean up and what it’s going to cost you to get that house back in a livable condition. You get right to work and get rid of the mess, repair and paint the walls, lay new carpet down, get new appliances, hang up a few paintings, and, wow, that house really looks nice now! That’s what Jesus means when a house is empty, swept, and garnished.

When a demon has been cast out of you, you do some house cleaning. You get rid of the stuff that got you possessed in the first place: you get rid of the booze, drugs, porn, anger, lying, and stealing. You clean up your act and your life. You go to church, read your Bible, and pray. You hang out with Christian friends and live life differently. You bear the fruit of the Spirit. You’re all nice and clean. And do you know what? You feel really good about yourself! You’re happy and you haven’t felt this good in a long time!

Guess what. This demon isn’t done with you. He wants you back. But he isn’t going to live in a clean house. HE CAN’T GET BACK INSIDE YOU IF YOU KEEP YOURSELF CLEAN AND WALK CLOSE WITH THE LORD.

That demon doesn’t give up easy. He wants back inside you and he’s going to keep on trying. So what this restless demon does is he goes and finds seven other demons who are a lot worse and more wicked than himself.

There are varying degrees of wickedness among demons. Some demons are not as bad as others. This explains why there are varying degrees of wickedness among men. Some murderers will kill only once or twice, while others will keep on killing until they’re dead. Some alcoholics will drink occasionally, while others drink on a daily basis, while still others drink on an hourly basis.

So now you’ve got 8 demons after you and 7 of these demons are a lot worse, a lot more wicked, a lot more alcoholic, a lot more drug addicted, a lot more rich, a lot more sexual and perverse, a lot more tempting, appealing, and irresistible.

They can’t come inside you unless you open the door of your soul to them. If you don’t do the right thing and resist these temptations, if you decide you want to enjoy these sins again, you’re opening your house back up to these demons. They come in and you’re 7 times worse than before. You thought you were really messed up before when you had 1 demon. Now you’re really really messed up, you’re more hooked, you get yourself more booze, more drugs, more guns; you watch more violent movies, you learn the ways of mass murderers, then you go out there and do what these demons have taught you to do.

Jesus closes this lesson by saying in verse 45, Even so will it be to this wicked generation. In other words, this generation of Jews were possessed by one demon, as it were. Jesus came along, cast these demons out, and helped them clean their lives up. But now, because of their religious leaders, they’re starting to turn away from the Lord. The furnishings are coming down. The house is getting dirtier. And in turning away from the Lord they’ve become like the repossessed demoniac: they’re a lot worse off than before.


Jesus declared that generation of Jews to be wicked, evil, and adulterous; possessed like a guy with 8 demons. That was before they had TV, movies, porn magazines, and the internet that made sexual sin so easily and readily available.

That was a time when everybody was pretty well covered up and there wasn’t a lot of skin exposed. Now we’ve got so much skin showing that there’s little left for the imagination.

That was an evil generation before they had gobs of factories churning out beer, meth, cocaine, and sex slaves. How much more evil are we today?

This generation of Jews in Jesus’ day were evil at a time when sodomites stayed hidden in the closet for fear of being stoned. Now the gays have come out of the closet with a vengeance, brazenly advocating for equal rights and legitimacy. Marriage is being redefined and the gay lifestyle is being legitimized and legalized. I don’t hate homosexuals. I just don’t like the fact that they’re contradicting God, twisting the Scriptures, and trying to convince everybody that God and Heaven are cool with their lifestyle. God destroyed the sodomites of Sodom and Gomorrah. And I just don’t think that He’s changed His mind about sodomites. All I’m saying is, if that generation of Jews was really wicked to Jesus, how much more today!


During that wicked and evil generation in Jesus’ day, the Old Testament was the only thing they taught in their schools. Today we’ve kicked God, the Bible, and prayer out of school. And look at what has happened to our schools and children since then.

I ask you, what harm was there in having God and the Bible taught in our schools  Who did God hurt that He was expelled from school? What did He do wrong that we sent Him home? What was so wrong with teaching our children to pray? For generations of time God, the Bible, and prayer were taught and encouraged. Society turned out alright when God was in school. The older folks that went through that education turned out okay. They weren’t all saints. But they weren’t monsters eithers.

Now look at what’s happened since God has left our schools. Look at the state of our schools, our communities, our nation. Most of all, look at the state of our kids and ourselves. I believe we will see in all fairness and honesty that we’re never better off when we kick God out of our lives, our schools, our communities, our nation. Like a demon repossessed person, we’re gobs worse off when we turn our backs on God. And, sadly, the school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School is a sad and tragic lesson of what happens when we kick God out and let the devils in.


We see very graphically what happens when we kick God out of school. We see where this nation is headed as we begin to kick God out of our nation and our social consciousness.

But let’s bring the tragedy closer to us and ask, Are we kicking God out of our homes? Oh, we’re not doing it blatantly and brazenly. But when we don’t teach our children the Bible, when we don’t take them to church, when we don’t have a spiritual, godly mindset and atmosphere in the home, when we teach our children by example that life is all about working hard and making good money so that we can buy the fine things of life and enjoy life to the hilt—with no mention of God, no time for God—haven’t we kicked God out of our homes? And if that evil, wicked and adulterous generation was 7 times more wicked and demon possessed than before, how in the world do we expect our homes and our families to be anything less than 7 times more wicked and possessed without God?


Let me bring it even closer yet. Let’s not talk about our children and family. Let’s talk about ourselves. Are we kicking God out of our life? No way! We’re Christians, you say. Yes, thank God for that. That’s what we say.

But what do our actions say? Do we talk to God much during the day or the week? Do we read our Bibles? Do we think about God? Do we think about what we heard in church? Are we spiritual? Do we talk about God and spiritual matters in the home? Do we sing Christian songs of worship to Him? What kind of music are we listening to? What kind of books are we reading? What kind of movies are we watching? How do we spend our leisure time? We have time to study or pray, but what do we do instead? Watch a movie. Surf the channels. Go shopping. Hang out with friends. Browse the net. Facebook. And before you know it, gasp, the night is done and it’s time to go to bed. No talk of God. No thoughts of God. No time with God. And we say we’re not kicking God out of our life? Who are we kidding? Certainly not God.


Brethren, if we don’t bring God into our life we’re going to be spiritually dead, wicked, evil, and adulterous as a demonically repossessed person. We’re not going to fare better than our schools, our communities, our nations, or the demon-possessed people living all around us. The evil that visited Sandy Hook can visit us at any time.

Do you know who I want to visit us? The Spirit of God in a fresh outpouring of repentance and revival! Do the research. Read the history books. Whenever revival swept a community or nation the crime rates went down, social conditions improved, families were strengthened, and people were a lot nicer to one another. Saints didn’t kill sinners. Sinners were saved, not killed. Isn’t this what we want? Isn’t this what America needs today?

This is Christmas time. Over two thousand years ago there wasn’t much of any room for Jesus in Bethlehem. It was as if the little town was kicking Jesus out. Thankfully, a stable was found where Jesus could be born.

In the Bethlehem that we call our homes, our churches, our communities, our nation, our world; can we let Jesus back in? Jesus is the answer for a sin-sick world. That’s why God gave us Jesus. Jesus is the Savior that can kick the devils out of our life, clean us up, and make us look good, feel good, and live right again.

We’ve seen what happens when we kick God out. Brethren, it’s time to kick the murdering devils out. Today, let’s bring God in. Let’s clean house. Let’s begin right here. Right now. Let it begin with me.


Not too long ago I was thinking about the many things Jesus did and the many things He could have done with the power that was His as the Son of God. But the one thing He couldn’t do was raise Himself back to life. A dead man has no power to come back to life. If the dead are to live again it will have to be by the life-giving power of the Holy Spirit of God. It was the Spirit, you see, that brought Jesus back to life, Romans 8:11. Christ was dependent on the Spirit to make Him live again. How we need the Spirit in our life to give us life and keep us in the path of life. Don’t fight, reject, quench, or resist the Holy Spirit. Your life is in His hands and you need Him to live. To reject Him and live for Self is spiritual suicide and death, Romans 8:13.


1 Peter 1:12 talks about the gospel and the plan of salvation that’s been revealed to men by the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into. Angels want to know more about the plan of salvation. They don’t know about it because it doesn’t apply to them. The plan of salvation applies to men, not angels. To them, salvation is a wonderful thing. It arrests their attention; it arouses their interest; it piques their curiosity. So they live with the longing to know more, to investigate and look into, this wonderful gospel of salvation.

Why did God choose to save sinful men, but not sinful angels? Both men and angels are rational beings with a mind to think freely. They both have free will to choose to obey God or disobey Him; free will to follow Lucifer, or stay true to God (Isaiah 14:12-14, 2 Peter 2:4, Jude 6).

Both have bodies, though of a different sort or composition. If Adam had not sinned, death would not have entered the world. Adam and Eve, and their posterity, would have lived endlessly without suffering, sickness, or death. Because of sin, their bodies became subject to death. Angels live endlessly. When many of them sinned against God and followed Lucifer in his rebellion against God, their bodies, I’m sure, underwent change. For those of us who’ve seen demons and angels, demons don’t look anywhere near as nice or angelic as angels. They’re rather ugly, frightful creatures (Revelation 9:1-10). And it’s certain that God did not make them this way. They became what they are now because of their rebellion. So their bodies changed appearance, but, unlike men, they didn’t become subject to death. They live endlessly in a tormented existence.

Good angels are ministering beings that assist believers (Psalm 91:11, Hebrews 1:14). They’re with us here on Earth, though, for the most part, they’re unseen by us. They have free will and a mind. They see things. When they see a man and woman kiss, do they long to know this sort of love? When they see a man and woman consummate their love, do they long to feel such oneness, and wonder, and ecstasy? When they see a family playing together and having gobs of fun, when they hear the laughter of children, when they see the tight hugs of parents and children; do the angels long to experience such happiness and joy? These God-sent angels see countless things, both good and bad. Do they ever wonder what it would be like to be human? Do they ever covet, or envy, being human? Can these good angels sin at any time, being tempted by all the enticements of humanity? Are good angels sinning right now and becoming damned demons?

I don’t know the answer to these questions. I just know that, for whatever reasons, God—in His sovereignty—decided not to save sinful angels or demons. He chose to provide salvation for sinful men, conditioned on their faith and repentance. But He made no such provision for demons. He extended no such offer to fallen angels. Demons live without the hope of redemption and salvation from hell. Fallen, sinful angels live tormented with the fact that they’ll never know the heavenly bliss they once knew many eons ago. They live eternally damned without hope.

That’s why I’m glad I’m not an angel. If I was, would I have followed Lucifer or God? If, as an angel, I see all the things humans do, would I follow suit and sin in the process? I don’t know. Do you? What would you have done if you were an angel? I look at myself today and ask, Do you know how temptable I am? You ought to know because I’m just as human as you are. We’ll all temptable. We’ve all fallen at some time or another. As humans, we at least have a chance at repentance, forgiveness, and salvation. We have a shot at Heaven. But for angels that sin even once, they have no such chance. They had their chance and they blew it. Now they live tormented for all eternity without the hope of redemption or reconciliation. Frankly, I wouldn’t want to be in their shoes. I wouldn’t want to take that chance. Yeah, I’m thankful I wasn’t created an angel. Infinitely more, I’m thankful for a God who loves me immeasurably. He made a way for me—and countless others—to be saved. Because of Him and the Christ who died for our redemption, we can spend eternity with Him. Yes, the human experience is filled with tears and troubles. Heartaches and pain. But as long as I have hope of Heaven, I’ll always be thankful I’m human and not an angel.

dummer den devils

I was reading some of James the other morning when my entire being was transfixed by the familiar verse, Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble (James 2:19).

The word tremble literally means what it means: to tremble, to shudder with fear, to be really really afraid that it shakes you up good.

I got to thinking about why the devils would tremble. They not only believe—they know for a fact—that there’s only one true God. They know that the Devil they follow is not the one true God. They know the vast extent and power of God. They know His great wrath. They know their ultimate end in the Bottomless Pit and Lake of Fire. They know where they’re going and they know they’ll be spending eternity locked away in torment without any hope of escape, redemption, or relief. They know what’s coming. They know what’s ahead. And they shudder in fear.

Sadly, a lot of people have no such faith, knowledge, or fear. They don’t fear God because they don’t believe He exists. For them, there’s no Hell. Death ends it all. There is literally nothing to be afraid of. So we’re told. Regrettably, and tragically, they’re wrong. And in this way, they show themselves to be dumber than devils. God have mercy. Help us not to be this dumb.


Recently, in preparation for a  forthcoming blog on Free Will and Christian Liberty or Freedom, I was thinking about how God created us as free moral creatures. We are created with the freedom to make our own decisions. With the capacity to choose what we will. Since we are created in the image of God, then, in a single moment of time and Divine illumination, I saw that God Himself is a free moral Being. He has free will. And He has the freedom or capacity to choose evil and sin if He wanted to. Of course, we’re trained to think that God can’t do that, it’s impossible for Him to do that, because He’s God. He’s totally righteous. And He would never choose to sin. Therein is the point. He would never choose to sin—not because He can’t. The fact of the matter is, He can if He wanted to because He has free will. No one’s forcing Him to be sinless. No one’s stopping Him from sinning. God wouldn’t, He doesn’t, choose to sin because He chooses to be—and remain—absolutely righteous, pure, and free from sin. He’s sinless by an act of His will, by a choice He makes.

Just think how profoundly human life and history would be changed if God, like Satan, chose to sin. We wouldn’t have a just, righteous God. We wouldn’t have a true, infallible Word on which to base our faith and hope. We wouldn’t have a Savior. We wouldn’t have salvation. We would be doomed to an endless eternity in Hell. Why? Because a sinful God cannot save anyone, including Himself. As the Biblical story of Christ teaches us, IT TOOK A SINLESS SAVIOR TO SAVE US FROM SIN. IF GOD CHOSE TO SIN AT ANY TIME–IN THE INFINITE SPAN OF TIME THAT ETERNITY IS–WE WOULD ALL BE DOOMED!

Our present quality of life and future eternal well-being hinge on God choosing not to sin. Thank you, God, for not ever choosing to sin. We’re saved and we have a hope because You always choose to be holy, sinless, and right. Help us, O God, to be like You. Help us choose not to sin.


Hell is no picnic. I always marvel at how many people don’t care that that’s where they’re going when their life is over. They act like Hell doesn’t exist. If they say it doesn’t, then it doesn’t. It’s as simple as that to them. I wish it were that simple. But God is true. And everything He’s said about Hell is true. It doesn’t matter that I’ve never been there. I’ve never seen it. I can’t prove it exists. But, then, no one can prove it doesn’t. So I guess it’s either your word or mine. I say it exists because God says it does and I believe God. I guess we’ll all find out for sure once we die. But I sure hate to find out the hard way. That’s why I choose to live my life doing everything I can to stay out of Hell.

I don’t like pain. And Hell is pain like you’ve never known. Like you’ve never imagined. It’s so painful that you don’t even know what pain is till you get there. I can’t believe you want to go there.

Here on Earth you hurt a little. So what do you do? You take a pain killer. You run to the doctor to take the pain away. You want to feel better. Right away! Come on. Be honest with me. You don’t want pain. You don’t like pain. Well, Hell is pain. And there ain’t no pain killers in Hell. It’s one excruciating pain like you’ve never known before. And it never goes away, it never gets better, it never never ends.

If you’re smart, like you say you are, you’ll do everything you can to stay clear of that damnable place. It starts with receiving Jesus as your Savior. He died to save you from Hell, so that you won’t have to go there, but go to Heaven instead. Now that’s where you really want to be!

Anyways, getting back to Hell, there are different places where the damned go after they die. Hell as we know it is the same as Hades or Sheol. It’s a place of torment where wicked men go right after they die. Jesus gives us a graphic picture of what it’s like in Luke 16:23-26,  And in hell the rich man lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.  (24)  And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.  (25)  But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.  (26)  And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence. So there’s fire, flame, and heat in Hell. What’s more, you’re going to be conscious and alive in Hell. You’re going to be able to feel. And think. And talk. Just like you do right now. So if you think you’re going to sleep forever and not feel a thing after you die, you’d better think again. God says you will. Hell is a place of torment where you’re not going to get any kind of relief whatsoever.

Besides Hell, there’s a place called Gehenna or the Lake of Fire. Hell, you might say, is temporary in a sense. There’s a time coming when the damned and wicked are going to get resurrected and stand in judgment before God. This judgment hasn’t yet occurred. The dead in Hell haven’t yet been judged. Revelation 20:11-15 tells us this. Anyways, when the wicked are finally judged by God, they, of course, will be found guilty. And they’ll be sent to their final place of punishment which will be forever. That’s where the wicked are going to spend eternity. In the Lake of Fire. If you can imagine a huge fire burning with flames reaching as high as the eye can see, if you can imagine being in the middle of this fire and not ever get burned up or die, you’ll live forever in the fire, feel it, and not ever get a nanosecond of reprieve or relief; you’ll get a small idea of what this fearful, gruesome Lake of Fire  is going to be like. It’s going to hurt bad—so bad that Hell is going look like a picnic in comparison.  

Besides Hell and the Lake of Fire, there’s a place call Tartarus. There’s only one place where it’s mentioned in the New Testament, in 2 Peter 2:4 where the word is translated ‘Hell’. Tartarus is where the angels who sinned before Earth was created are locked up. It’s a prison. And it’s a place of total darkness, Jude 6 & 13.  One of these days, they too, just like men, are going to be judged by God and sent to their eternal place of punishment which will be the Lake of Fire.

The Bible also talks about a place of outer darkness. I’m not sure where this place is. It may be Tartarus. Or it may be a compartment of Hell where darkness—not fire and heat—is the main instrument of punishment and torture. Maybe it’s the Abyss that we’ll be looking at next. Anyways, Jesus talked about this place in Matthew 8:12, 22:13 and 25:30. Do you have any idea what it’s like to be in total darkness? Where you can’t see a single thing? That’s scary for a lot of people. In this place of darkness, Jesus says, people are going to cry, scream, and gnash their teeth. It’s pure misery and torment.

Lastly, there’s a place called the Abyss or the Bottomless Pit. Revelation 9 and 20 talks about this place. It may be the same place as Tartarus, but I’m not sure. All I know is what the Bible says about it. It’s a bottomless hole where bad angels are confined. It’s a prison. They can’t get out. There’s a door, or a gateway, that can be opened from the outside. And Jesus has the Key. During Tribulation, the prison door of the Abyss is going to be opened and a whole host of these bad boys are going to be let loosed on the Earth to really mess men up bad. But until that time comes, they’re locked away in this place of darkness and torment. Now, for some people, darkness isn’t that big a deal. It’s not pain, torment, or suffering, like Hell and the Lake of Fire are to people. But for these fallen angels, being confined in darkness and not having any place to go is their Hell. They absolutely hate it and dread it.

All the demons know about the Abyss. Let me back track for just a moment here and say that not every bad angel is in Tartarus or the Abyss right now. Some bad angels, by God’s permission, were not sent to their prison hole, but were allowed to roam throughout the Earth and the universe to do their thing—which is make trouble for men. These bad angels are demons. And there are an awful lot of them on Earth today, possessing people and making people do all sorts of really bad things.

Anyways, back to the Abyss. Every demon that’s roaming loose outside the Abyss know about the Abyss. They know it exists. They know what it’s like there. And they don’t want to go there. Luke 8:26-31 tells us this. And they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against Galilee.  (27)  And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs.  (28)  When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not.  (29)  (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.)  (30)  And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him.  (31)  And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep.

Now this word deep in verse 31 is the Abyss. The demons weren’t talking about the deepest part of the Sea. They were talking about the Abyss. So with this in mind, let’s read the verse again: And the demons besought Jesus that He would not command them to go out into the Abyss. You see, the Abyss, the demons’ Hell, is so bad that even demons don’t want to go there! They know the Abyss is real. They know what it’s like there. And they don’t want to go there.

It seems to me that an awful lot of people just aren’t as smart as demons. They just don’t care about going to Hell. They will. Believe me. They will once they get there. Folks, don’t join the crowds that are rushing to get into Hell. You won’t like it there. Believe me. You won’t. Get saved. Give your life to Jesus. Serve Him. You’ll agree. Heaven’s a lot better place to spend forever.


While studying through the Book of Acts recently, an old, familiar question came to mind: Did Saul ever meet the Lord personally prior to his conversion? He says nothing of it, so, as a matter of conjecture, I don’t think he did. However, because Saul was a self-proclaimed defender of the Jewish faith and defended it zealously to the death, I think it’s highly likely that Saul saw the Lord and heard Him speak on occasion in Jerusalem prior to His crucifixion. As adamantly opposed as Saul was to the followers of Jesus, I personally think, again as a matter of conjecture, that Saul was present at Jesus’ trial and was numbered among those who called for His death and crucifixion. It is inconceivable for me to think otherwise.

Be that as it may, Saul was so totally convinced that he was right: Jesus of Nazareth was definitely not the promised Messiah; He was a deceiver who threatened to lead the entire Jewish nation away from the teachings and traditions of Israel’s esteemed rabbis; Jesus, His teachings, and His followers needed to be eradicated and stamped out!

But all this changed one day on the road to Damascus (Acts 9). Saul “met” the Lord personally, believed in Him, and went on to become the leading evangelist and apologist of the very Church that he once sought to kill and destroy. Meeting the Lord personally changed his entire belief system. It changed his vocation from devoted Pharisee to devoted Christian. It changed his life forever.

Meeting the Lord personally has this drastic, life-changing impact as many of us can testify. Let me hasten to say that not every one who meets the Lord personally believes in Him. The religious leaders of Jesus’ day is ample proof of this tragic fact. But for those of us who are ordained unto eternal life, an encounter with the living Christ changed us forever. And it’s still changing us to this day. The point I’m trying to make, based on Saul’s conversion, is this. (Remember that I’m only talking about those who are preordained by God to eternal life.) WHEN YOU MEET THE LORD YOU BECOME A CHANGED PERSON. YOU BECOME A BELIEVER. You espouse the Person, doctrines, and lifestyle that you once hated, rejected, and opposed. Your Damascus Road becomes the beginning of a changed life.

In a sort of way, EVERYONE WHO MEETS THE LORD BECOMES A BELIEVER. Hear me out because I’m not being contradictory or heretical here. James 2:16 reads, Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. The Devil and his demons believe many truths that countless humans reject. They believe in God. They believe Jesus is the Son of God. They know that salvation is found only in Christ. They know the Bible’s true. And more. But for all their knowing and believing, the Devil and his demons aren’t saved because they’ve chosen to reject the very Person they believe. So, in a manner of speaking, the Devil and his demons are believers, but damned believers because of their rejection of Christ.

Like the Devil and his demons, every human being at the moment of death and continuing endlessly to the Day of Judgment and Eternal Punishment, becomes a believer. They finally meet the Lord face to face and realize, all too late, that what the Bible says is true after all. There is only one true God and one true, saving religion. Jesus is the Son of God. He is the only way to God and Heaven. There is a Heaven and there is a Hell. There is life after death. There is eternal torment and suffering in store for all those who refuse to believe in Jesus and who live defiantly and disobediently to the moral precepts of God’s Word. In a word, AT THE MOMENT OF DEATH AND ETERNALLY THEREAFTER, THE LOST AND THE UNSAVED BECOME BELIEVERS…BUT BELIEVERS TOO LATE. They refused to become believers while alive on the Earth. And so, as a Divine consequence, they become damned believers for all eternity in Hell and the Lake of Fire.

Jesus’ parable of the rich man and Lazarus is sobering proof of this sad and profound truth. The parable is found in Luke 16:19-31 if you’d like to read it. I encourage you to read it. It’s convincing proof of my contention that all men will eventually become believers. Some believe before they die and henceforth live forever with the Lord, even after death. And some believe after they die and henceforth live damned and tormented forever after. But this one thing is sure: THERE ARE NO ATHEISTS OR AGNOSTICS IN HELL. FORMER ATHEISTS AND AGNOSTICS, YES. BUT IN HELL THEY ARE NOW BELIEVERS. BUT BELIEVERS TOO LATE.

Seeing therefore that all of us will, sooner or later, eventually, become believers; the goal is to become believers now—while we’re alive—lest we die in unbelief and become believers too late. Hell is a million times more hellish than you can imagine. It is your absolute worst nightmare, only a million times multiplied. Take the worst pain you’ve ever felt, multiply it a million times, and you’ll have just a faint notion of what the suffering in  Hell is like. It’ll definitely be worse than that once you get there. Hell is irreversible. There is no way out. I do not wish this fate for anyone. If you don’t believe in Jesus right now, please reverse course and give your life to Him while you have a chance to do so. Mark my word. You’ll end up believing Him anyway. But if you wait too long to believe, then, after you die, you will be a believer too late. A damned believer. Friend, don’t let this tragic fate be yours.