“Taking up serpents…”

First off, I must admit that I have about three posts I need to write to explain my six-week hiatus and my name change ‘Splaining the name thing…. But I really have to do this today because I think it may be “on time” for some and I definitely don’t want to wait until it is too late to give maybe a little different prospective on a probably quite taboo and deadly subject ( in more ways than one) but nevertheless  a very real subject  inside some denominations of the Christian faith.

“Snake handling” or “taking up serpents” mainly associated with Pentecostal and Holiness churches, but I do want to STRESS the majority of churches in these groups do NOT practice this.

I have glimpsed television shows dealing with this and I stay far away from those shows and now there is a new video on social media that was filmed during just such a service in a neighboring state.

It worries me, it worries me for several reasons.

The clip I watched showed multiple people filming this so it is really hard to know just how broad an audience it will hit. I truly do not understand the need to film this because the subject is so hard for many to understand and I personally believe it would be far more beneficial filming and sharing a service of healing and miracles.

And seriously if one has the kind of faith to lift up a Copperhead or rattlesnake and not be bitten and die, they should have the kind of faith to believe the lame will walk, the deaf will hear, because the miraculous and the signs and wonders are for those who DO NOT BELIEVE, so that they will see and know that no power other than the power of a sovereign God could have brought forth these truly supernatural occurrences.

I fear most the door which is opened for those who do not understand to mock and ridicule and unknowingly endanger their souls in doing so, usually others will be dancing in the Spirit, or speaking in tongues and contrary to denominational arguments as to whether these manifestation are still active in our present day, the real danger lies in the fact that if those who have never read the book of Acts or know anything at all of the Bible or Jesus, and are not even laughing about the snakes, decides to mock the dancing, or some other aspect of a service, it endangers their souls, through something that they should have never viewed unless the were present.

Because we can be forgiven for ANYTHING EXCEPT mocking the Holy Spirit.

When we do not understand we have no way to gauge exactly what we are seeing other than our OWN human mind and for those who do not know Christ, this can be even more dangerous.

I for one believe in the sanctity of ALL life, and do not believe in hitting or killing and I know Jesus to be a beautiful GENTLE creator and I really feel sorry for the snakes which have to be terrified but I also know better than to bash their beliefs because they are worshiping God they way they understand it to be and they do this as an exercise in faith.

Just as a boxer might push themselves to new limits everyday while preparing for an upcoming match.

This is how they build their faith that God will protect them.

So for those who may not know, we’ll look at the verses and origins of this and I’ll give you my take on my personal thoughts,again those are mine, EVERYONE has their own relationship with the Lord, and that IS what we MUST be mindful of. Okay, where does this practice come from?

Have to get back to the garden for that one, most know the story of Adam, Eve, and the serpent that seduced her through her own desires for supposed “knowledge” right into absolute disobedience to God. And as God gave divine judgments against ALL three of them.

Genesis 3:14,15: “And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because THOU hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beats of the field; upon thy belly thou shalt go, and dust shall be thou eat all the days of thy life.

And I WILL PUT ENMITY (hostility) BETWEEN THEE AND THE WOMAN, AND BETWEEN THY SEED AND HER SEED; AND IT (he) SHALL BRUISE THY HEAD, AND THOU SHALT BRUISE HIS HEEL.”  

So the long-held hatred between humans and snakes can be easily explained and symbolically many older demonstrations hold this to a more drastic level than many of us do today, because as we understand it, all females suffer terribly during childbirth and I personally believe the serpent had legs at this time, but nevertheless we know snakes now can only move on their bellies, and are absolutely the most dreaded and hated among all creation.

This gives us the reason behind the symbolism of power to subdue them. Many other scriptures deal with the subject, but we’ll try to stick with the subject at hand.

So further proof of this, can be found in the fact that power over the serpent was one of the signs God gave Moses to show that his commission was truly divine.

 Exodus 4:1-5: “And Moses answered and said, But behold, they will NOT believe me, NOR hearken unto my voice: for they will say, The Lord hath NOT appeared unto thee.

And the Lord said unto him, What is in thine hand? And he said, A rod. And he (the Lord) said, Cast (throw) it down on the ground, and he cast it down it on the ground, AND IT BECAME A SERPENT: and Moses fled from before it. 

And the Lord said unto Moses, Put forth thine hand, and take it by the tail ( reach down and pick it up by the tail) And he put forth his hand, and caught it, and IT BECAME A ROD IN HIS HAND:

THAT THEY MAY BELIEVE THAT THE LORD GOD OF OUR FATHERS, THE GOD OF ABRAHAM, THE GOD OF ISAAC, AND THE GOD OF JACOB, HATH APPEARED UNTO THEE..” 

Exodus chapter seven also tells us of this same rod being turned again to the serpent which consumed the serpents of Pharaoh’s magicians. God sent mighty wonders through Moses that the Egyptians AND the Hebrews would know, see, and BELIEVE in the power of Jehovah God.

Again, Numbers chapter twenty-one tells us of people speaking AGAINST God and His servant, prompting God’s anger which he displayed by sending fiery serpents upon the people, when the people repented and came to Moses, God instructed to make a brass serpent and those bitten who be healed when the gazed upon it. 

We understand that to be the forerunner verse to John 3:14,15:“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.”

Now to bring it New Testament, when Jesus gave the great commission, he spoke also of the signs and wonders, those unexplained events that could only be explained by a very real belief in the power and glory of Almighty God.

Mark 16:15-18: “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be damned (condemned).

And THESE SIGNS shall follow them that believe; IN MY NAME shall thy cast out devils (demons) ; they shall speak with new tongues;

THEY SHALL TAKE UP SERPENTS: AND IF THEY DRINK ANY DEADLY THING, IT SHALL NOT HURT THEM; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” 

I personally believe in miracles, I have seen miracles and there have been times I could not understand why something didn’t end with a miracle and then I remembered something, miracles ARE for a sign and only God dictates when that is required, as believers we are already told to “walk by faith” and that is His requirement.

The miracles, He sends as He wishes, not necessarily as we desire. although I believe in asking and asking!

So this is how I interrupt this, not saying I am right, not saying you have to agree, but saying PLEASE do not encourage others in something they do not understand because Paul also told us that we are babes we must have milk, not solid food.

Of course I paraphrased that, but it translates to this, we grow little by little in the things of God and trying to chew meat when we haven’t teeth will only choke us to death.  so taking up serpents, we are told we will tread upon them, in the sense of the demonic forces we deal with that are constantly  striking at our heels in hopes of making us stumble. Jesus gave us power through His name over those.

Now what if the enemy tries to kill you BEFORE your time and others are just knowing that you have done something to “deserve” it?

Acts 28:3-6: “And when Paul had gathered  a bundle of sticks, and laid them on the fire, THERE CAME A VIPER OUT OF THE HEAT, AND FASTENED ON (sunk in his fangs and held onto) HIS HAND. 

And when the barbarians SAW the VENOMOUS BEAST HANG ONTO HIS HAND, they said among themselves, No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he escaped the sea, yet vengeance suffereth him not to live. 

And HE SHOOK OFF THE BEAST (creature) INTO THE FIRE, AND FELT NO HARM.

Howbeit, thy looked (expected) WHEN HE SHOULD HAVE BEEN SWOLLEN, OR FALLEN DEAD SUDDENLY: but  AFTER THEY HAD LOOKED A GREAT WHILE, AND SAW NO HARM COME TO HIM, THEY CHANGED THEIR MINDS…..”  

Deadly “poison” by accident, or by the devils assault, or by simple basic necessity:

Exodus 15:23-25: ” And when they came to Marah, they COULD NOT DRINK of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter: therefore the name of it was called Marah.

And the people murmured against Moses, saying, WHAT SHALL WE DRINK? And he cried unto the Lord; and the Lord shewed (showed) him a tree, which he was to cast into the waters, AND THE WATERS WERE MADE SWEET…”   

2 Kings 2:19-22: “And the men of the city said unto Elisha, Behold, I pray thee, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord seeth ( it is a nice place as you see) but THE WATER IS NAUGHT (bad), and the ground is barren.

And he said, Bring me a new cruse, and put salt therein. And they brought it to him.

And he went forth unto the spring of the waters, and cast the salt therein, and said, THUS SAITH THE LORD, I HAVE HEALED THESE WATERS; THERE SHALL NOT BE FROM THENCE ANY MORE DEATH OR BARREN LAND.

SO THE WATERS WERE HEALED UNTO THIS DAY, according to the saying of Elisha which he spake.”

2 Kings 4:38-41: “And Elisha came again to Gilgal: and there was a dearth (famine) in the land; and the sons of the prophets were sitting before him: and he said unto his servant, set on a great pot, and seethe pottage (soup) for the sons of the prophets.

And one went out into the field to gather herbs, and found a wild vine, and gathered wild gourds, his lap full, ( as many as he could carry), and came and shred them INTO the pot of pottage: for they knew them not. So they poured out for the men to eat.

And it came to pass, AS THEY WERE EATING OF THE POTTAGE, THAT THEY CRIED OUT, AND SAID, O THOU MAN OF GOD, THERE IS DEATH IN THIS POT. And they could NOT eat thereof. 

But he (Elisha) said, THEN BRING MEAL. And he cats it into the pot: and he said, Pour out for the people, that they may eat. AND THERE WAS NO HARM (nothing harmful) IN THE POT.”

I hope this may have helped understand these traditions and the importance of whether we ourselves embrace them or not, we should be truly careful of what we say about them.

Thanks for reading!

Love & Peace, GOOD TO BE BACK!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NB 2018

 

Laughing their way RIGHT INTO HELL….

“Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: FEAR GOD, and keep his commandments: for this IS the whole duty of man. For God shall bring EVERY work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good , or whether it be evil.” Ecclesiastes 12: 13,14

I am forever amazed at the entertainment industry and how far they will go for ratings and to make the almighty dollar, and the willingness to sell out anything and everything to further their careers, including THEIR OWN SOULS.

When I think I have seen it all, I discover that i was quite wrong.. I do not watch very many shows because most now are absolute filth and even if someone else is watching and there is “something” there it will present “itself”, I truly believe God allows this so it can “warned” of and I have even had people comment to me that had watched so & so and had NEVER heard anything like that before or noticed certain references mocking Christians and God.

There is list and no one needs them pointed out but I will and if you ARE watching any of these shows, you’d better think again. Of course SNL, South Park, and anything Bill Maher, Bill Nye, and the late George Carlin has touched is polluted filth, PERIOD.

The list could go and on and what is even more horrific is the cartoons and “teen” programs which are weaving in anti-God “jokes” and even point-blank blasphemy such as SEVERAL different references to “tongues” and actually mimicking and mocking that characters are “Christians” and I caught one that even had the audience chanting “HG” they were saying the name , I will NOT use it here for fear, but it is reference to ONE of the members of the HOLY TRINITY, chanting this while a skit member who was supposed to be an “old Christian” man RAN the aisle of the audience. The most horrify thought with this, the person who did that skit PROFESSES Christ.

Al Sharpton (whom I’m NOT even getting into!) doing a skit years ago, also on SNL as a “wise man” from the Nativity story and here is the deal, NO ONE mocks God and when all the “curse” started following the “Batman” trilogy, you know, Heath Ledger dying while doing the joker, ( I know the world argues that but I don’t write for the world, so…) and then as we know the horrific theater shootings related to the SAME character.

Just a case of mental illnesses? Think not, you can trace the beginning of this back to the first in the Trilogy when the “Batman” character mocks God. And it is in movie after movie, after movie.

These shows are fiction, the character are fictitious but GOD IS VERY REAL and He will not be mocked period and no one is going to tell him it is a joke or it is a job and when you have shows geared toward kids, they grow up thinking it is okay to mock God and Christians and WHEN CHRISTIANS LAUGH RIGHT ALONG SIDE THEM who is telling them otherwise?

HOW serious is this? How about serious enough to NEVER be forgiven? To speak against the Holy Ghost is UNFORGIVABLE. Jesus will FORGIVE us for ANYTHING, murder, stealing, adultery, ANY sin you can name BUT NOT SPEAKING AGAINST HIS SPIRIT.

 “He that is NOT with me IS AGAINST ME; and he that GATHERETH NOT with me; SCATTERETH abroad. Wherefore I SAY unto you, ALL MANNER OF SIN AND BLASPHEMY SHALL BE FORGIVEN UNTO MEN: BUT (except) THE BLASPHEMY AGAINST THE HOLY GHOST SHALL NOT BE FORGIVEN MEN.

And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of Man, IT SHALL BE FORGIVEN HIM: BUT WHOSOEVER SPEAKETH AGAINST THE HOLY GHOST, IT SHALL NOT BE FORGIVEN HIM, NEITHER IN THIS WORLD, NEITHER IN THE WORLD TO COME.”  Matthew 12:30-33

Jesus HIMSELF is telling us that if we are not gathering with Him we ARE SCATTERING, to hear these things and be aware of them and sit idly by while our God is being mocked and us either laughing or NOT saying anything and NOT letting others KNOW that this is wrong and not only is it wrong, IT CAN COST THEM THEIR VERY SOUL, makes us the worst kind of “scatterers” and He also tells us that a person may speak a word AGAINST Him and BE FORGIVEN but to speak AGAINST HIS HOLY GHOST WILL NEVER BE FORGIVEN NOT IN THIS WORLD OR THE NEXT.

So if you have NEVER thought about this or if you have NEVER been taught that it is wrong, I AM HERE TO TELL YOU, IT IS WRONG.

God IS HOLY, God WANTS us to have joy and laughter IS merry medicine but IN context. THERE IS NEVER, EVER AN EXCUSABLE REASON TO MAKE JOKES ABOUT GOD OR ANYTHING PERTAINING TO HIM OR HIS KINGDOM, OR HIS FOLLOWERS, EVER!

I am also shocked at the amount of “memes” that flood social media and most are supposed to be “Pentecostal” humor, and TRUE Pentecostal or any other denominations of God’s children could tell people sending these things out that is the devil and the devil only that finds this stuff humorous and ones who share it are LETTING satan use them to mock and ridicule their fellow-servants and it further SCATTERS the flock.

But DON’T take my word for it. TAKE THE WORD: ” HEAR THE WORD OF THE LORD, ye children of Israel: for the Lord hath a controversy with the inhabitants of the land, because there is no truth, nor mercy, NOR THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD IN THE LAND. By swearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery, they break out (BREAK ALL RESTRAINTS), and blood toucheth blood.

Therefore shall the land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein shall languish, with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven;yea, the fishes of the sea shall also be taken away. YET NO MAN STRIVE (CONTEND), NOR REPROVE (reprimand) ANOTHER: for thy people are as they that strive with the priest. 

Therefore shalt thou fall in the day, and THE PROPHET ALSO SHALL FALL (stumble) WITH THEE IN THE NIGHT,And I will destroy thy mother. MY PEOPLE ARE DESTROYED FOR LACK OF KNOWLEDGE: because thou hast REJECTED knowledge, I WILL ALSO REJECT THEE, that thou shalt be no priest to me:….” Hosea 4:1-6(a)  

His people ARE being destroyed because of a lack of knowledge and we see quite clearly whose feet the blame for this will be laid at.

“The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth (takes) it to heart: and merciful men are taken away. none considering that the righteous are is taken away from the evil to come: He shall enter into peace, they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his uprightness (having God’s righteousness and salvation).

BUT DRAW HITHER (come close), ye sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the whore (harlot). Against WHOM do ye sport (RIDICULE) yourselves? Against WHOM make ye a wide mouth, and draw out the tongue? are ye not children of transgression , a seed of falsehood.” Isaiah 57:1-4

We KNOW who they speak against and we also KNOW their end:

“But these SPEAK EVIL of THOSE THINGS WHICH THEY KNOW NOT: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in THOSE things THEY CORRUPT THEMSELVES.

WOE UNTO THEM! for they have gone the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam FOR REWARD (profit), and PERISHED IN THE GAINSAYING (rebellion) of Core.

These ARE spots (stains) in your feasts of charity, when the feast with YOU, feeding themselves WITHOUT FEAR: clouds they are WITHOUT WATER, carried about of winds; Trees WHOSE FRUIT WITHERETH (dries up) WITHOUT FRUIT, TWICE DEAD, plucked up by the roots;

RAGING waves of the sea, FOAMING OUT OF THEIR OWN SHAME; wandering stars, TO WHOM IS RESERVED THE BLACKNESS OF DARKNESS FOR EVER.

 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord COMETH with ten thousand of his saints. TO EXECUTE JUDGMENT ON ALL, and to convince (convict) ALL that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, AND OF ALL THEIR HARD SPEECHES (HARSH THINGS) WHICH UNGODLY SINNERS HAVE SPOKEN AGAINST HIM.

These are murmurers, complainers, WALKING AFTER THEIR OWN LUSTS; and THEIR MOUTHS SPEAKETH GREAT SWELLING WORDS, HAVING MEN’S ADMIRATION BECAUSE OF ADVANTAGE. 

But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; How they told you there should be (would be) MOCKERS IN THE LAST TIME (last days), who should (would) walk after their own ungodly lusts. These be they who separate themselves (cause divisions), sensual (worldly) having NOT the Spirit.

But ye, beloved, building up yourselves, on your most holy faith, PRAYING IN THE HOLY GHOST. Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

And of some HAVE COMPASSION making a difference (distinction). And others SAVE WITH FEAR, pulling them out of the fire: HATING EVEN THE GARMENT SPOTTED (DEFILED) BY THE FLESH.” Jude verses 10-23

Not going to be quit so funny… do your part and speak up every opportunity you are presented with, God will not be mocked and in hell the laughter will cease, your voice against this “entertainment” may be the voice that prevents someone from going there.

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2017