Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Letter 2011




Dear Friends & Family,
  As Christmas gets closer I begin to realize 2011 is almost over, 2012 is almost here, so I thought that before I get really busy with cleaning, fixing meals and fellowshipping with family and friends that I had better write my "year end" letter.
  For me this year has been a year full of changes, growing, and maturing. God has used this year to really cultivate my relationship with Him and my family. I feel like that I have grown so much closer to the LORD lately, although I know I can never be as close as I want to be until the day I meet Him in Glory (oh what a day that will be).
 This year instead of going through everything that has gone on in my life in "short form" , I just want to give you what's on my heart, and that is the Gospel...Jesus Christ My LORD and Savior...
 This time of year comes with certain expectations: gifts, magic, love, peace, light, life, believing in the unseen, dreaming, wishing, etc. and I would like to address those things through the eyes of the WORD...

The World's Gifts VS God's Gift
 The World gives to satisfy their own needs, they find ways to try to satisfy and fill the need they feel for Christ...but they will never attain that fulfillment because only Abba Father can fill it with the Greatest Gift He gave over 2,000 years ago.
Scriptural Examples:
The woman of Samaria reminds me of how others try to fill their needs, this woman tried to satisfy her need for a Saviour by having several different husbands, but it wasn't until Jesus showed her that He was all she needed that she was able to repent and accept Him as the only fulfillment to her needs. See John 4
"Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again:But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw." ~ John 4:13-15~

"That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:15-16
Magic VS The Miracle
 Magic is often associated with Christmas because of "Santa", his elves and reindeer. But God associates magic of any kind with demons, the devil & hell.
 The miracle is that God sent His only son to earth, born of a virgin, sinless and perfect to die for our sins...fulfilling every prophecy ever made....and all of that was a MIRACLE in and of itself.
Scriptural Examples:
Our dependency on something other than God reminds me of Saul and Samuel, Samuel told Saul to wait to do the sacrifice, but he got impatient and did not believe that God would send Samuel in time to make the sacrifice. For this Saul's kingdom was not passed down to his son's but instead a shepherd boy named David.
 Prophecy after prophecy was fulfilled, in fact there are over 300 references about the coming of the messiah. I will only mention a few.

"But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, Though you are little among the thousands of Judah, Yet out of you shall come forth to Me, The One to be Ruler in Israel, Whose goings forth are from of old, From everlasting.” " ~ Micah 5:2 ~
"Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David,  to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife,[a] who was with child. So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered.  And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn." ~ Luke 2:4-7 ~
"Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel." ~ Isaiah 7:14
"Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit.  Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not wanting to make her a public example, was minded to put her away secretly.  But while he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.  And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.”  So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying: “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,”which is translated, “God with us.” Then Joseph, being aroused from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord commanded him and took to him his wife, and did not know her till she had brought forth her firstborn Son.And he called His name JESUS." Matthew 1:19-25 (See also Luke 1)
Worldly Love VS Perfect Love
 Most people associate love with a feeling, and though love is a feeling it is more of a doing word than a "feeling" word. Hollywood has distorted our view of "true love" and most of the time what they portray is none other than lust. God's love is perfect love, and if we repent of our sins,  love Him and accept His gift HE will perfect love in us.

"For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works." 2 Corinthians 11:13-15

"Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour." 1 Peter 5:8

"Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. " John 8:12

"Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house." Matthew 5:13-15

"And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen." Matthew 28:18-20

"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service." Romans 12:1

Santa VS Jesus
 Santa offers gifts, Jesus is the perfect gift. Santa offers material things, Jesus offers Salvation and Heavenly riches. Santa offers a season of happiness, Jesus offers eternal Joy. Santa wants you to be good so you can receive (deserve) his gifts, Jesus gave you His Gift Freely (all you have to do is take it). Santa offers glitter and magic, Jesus offers you eternal life, crowns of gold to lay at His feet, a mansion in Heaven and to eternally look upon His face and sing His praises. Santa is a lie, Jesus is The Truth.
Christmas has become a festivity surrounded by gluttony, lust, covetousness, greediness, and fantasizing. Many of these things surround the man in the red suit. I love that St. Nicholas was a good man and hopefully a Christian (I have not read very much about him, but do know he was a Catholic and therefore may not have been a true Christian). But what I do not like is that he has been turned into a magical creature with powers that seem to be almost "christ-like" and this is wrong (see verse above 2 Corinthians 11:13-15). Jesus is the only person that can give perfect love, hope, peace, light, and so much more...all "Santa" has to offer is disappointment.

"I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep." John 10:9-11

"But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name." John 20:31

"Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." John 14:1-6

"For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 6:23

"But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God" may be purchased with money. Acts 8:20

"Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 5:14-21

"But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;" Titus 3:4-6

"But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away." Isaiah 64:6
Now I have offered you the Greatest Gift that I could ever give you, I have given you the knowledge of God's Greatest Gift...but that is as far as I can go. ONLY YOU can make the decision to take The Gift, I pray that you will. 
 For those of you who have already repented of your sins and received the LORD Jesus Christ, I ask that you please make sure you also give the gift that you have been asked to give by our LORD. 
SHINE THE TRUE LIGHT!!!!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Blessings,

Elisha <3 (2 Cor. 12:9-10)


"Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. " John 14:23

"They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them. We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error. Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us. Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love him, because he first loved us" 1 John 4:5-19
False Peace VS True Peace
 I hear about "peace" all the time, I see the supposed signs of worldly peace, a broken cross in a circle (which by the way is VERY demonic and has nothing to do with peace), The UN, people crying save the earth, make peace, save the animal, etc. But the WORD (which is my final authority) tells me that there will never be earthly peace.
 Jesus is the Prince of Peace, the only time the world will ever be in perfect peace is when Christ makes a new heaven and new earth. We as Christians can have peace within our souls, because we know that the Prince of Peace lives in our hearts and He rules over us. Jesus is the balm of Gilead,

"For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6

"Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee." Isaiah 26:3

"How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of the LORD is with us? Lo, certainly in vain made he it; the pen of the scribes is in vain. The wise men are ashamed, they are dismayed and taken: lo, they have rejected the word of the LORD; and what wisdom is in them? Therefore will I give their wives unto others, and their fields to them that shall inherit them: for every one from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness, from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. For they have healed the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among them that fall: in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith the LORD. I will surely consume them, saith the LORD: there shall be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the fig tree, and the leaf shall fade; and the things that I have given them shall pass away from them. Why do we sit still? assemble yourselves, and let us enter into the defenced cities, and let us be silent there: for the LORD our God hath put us to silence, and given us water of gall to drink, because we have sinned against the LORD. We looked for peace, but no good came; and for a time of health, and behold trouble! The snorting of his horses was heard from Dan: the whole land trembled at the sound of the neighing of his strong ones; for they are come, and have devoured the land, and all that is in it; the city, and those that dwell therein. For, behold, I will send serpents, cockatrices, among you, which will not be charmed, and they shall bite you, saith the LORD. When I would comfort myself against sorrow, my heart is faint in me. Behold the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people because of them that dwell in a far country: Is not the LORD in Zion? is not her king in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with strange vanities? The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment hath taken hold on me. Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?" Jeremiah 8:8-22

"But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." John 14:26-27

"Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes." Romans 3:16-18
The Angel of Light VS The Light of the World
The devil is the great deceiver and knows how to disguise himself, he wants us to fall into sin or if we are not Christians he wants to keep us from salvation. If we are Christians we should be able to sense if something is not right. If we are walking towards the Light of the World, then no other "light" can distract us.

Remember Jesus commands us to be the salt of the earth, and a light as well. Although we are not "The Light", His light is within us (if we have com to repentance and asked Him to be our LORD and Saviour) and therefore we are commanded NOT to cover that light. If you claim to be a Christian and are not giving the Gospel, then you are in sin (yes, I said sin) and you need to repent.