JREnsey blog for August 2021

Welcome…thanks for visiting!

The First Word

Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, 20 for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body” (I Corinthians 6:29,20 NLT).

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Some good stuff

Good thought: Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery and today is a gift—that is why they call it “present.”

Good observation: It is easier to preach ten sermons than it is to live one.

Good thing to remember: Forbidden fruits create many jams.

Good source of credibility: We are giving extreme credibility to some solely because they sat at the feet of fools for three or four years and got a piece of paper confirming that they did so. We are bowing before the wrong entity. Rather than worshipping at the altar of humanism, shouldn’t we be honoring God with worship and obeisance at the altar of absolute truth? Education including that perspective provides true credibility.

Good fact to keep in mind: He who angers you, controls you!

Good insight: God doesn’t always call the qualified; He qualifies the called.

Good Word: “In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs” (Hebrews 1:1-4).

Good suggestion:  “If you love wealth more than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, depart from us in peace. We ask not your counsel nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you. May your chains rest lightly upon you and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen.” – Samuel Adams (1722-1803)

Good news: God hasn’t gone anywhere. He is still on the throne observing all that is going on. He hasn’t forgotten any of us. His people are the apple of His eye and are engraved on the palm of His hand (Isaiah 49:15,16).

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Things I don’t understand

That list could get a little long for this blog! I will start by joining with Agur when he wrote:

“There be three things which are too wonderful for me, yea, four which I know not: The way of an eagle in the air; the way of a serpent upon a rock; the way of a ship in the midst of the sea; and the way of a man with a maid” (Proverbs 30:18,19 KJV).

• Why brilliant thinkers who become theologians cannot see the Oneness of God when it is so clear in the Scriptures.

• When it is even less difficult to see baptism in the name of Jesus, why do the most revered Bible commentators in Christianity insist on using a trinitarian-sounding formula that even many of them believe may have been a later insertion into the Gospel of Matthew (28:19)?

• Why do some intelligent-seeming men will forsake the clear pronouncements on holiness in the NT epistles, while claiming to be committed Christians? What in the apostles’ writings is dispensable and immaterial?

• Why do some very smart people dismiss the clear Bible teaching about the roles of men and women relative to functional authority in the home and church when the fruit of such a position is on constant display in religion and culture?

• Why we forget so quickly. The “Gipper” knew: “One of the traditional methods of imposing statism, or socialism, on a people has been by way of medicine. It’s very easy to disguise a medical program as a humanitarian project.” – Ronald Reagan

• These seem to be on a par with the mystery of why the President, in response to the gun violence in the cities like Chicago, Baltimore, NYC, etc., wants to remove the long guns from the homes of law-abiding citizens in Wyoming and Tennessee instead of going after the criminal elements using handguns for killing each in the inner cities.

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Are you into cisheteropatriarchialism?

Did you know that you might be guilty of cisheteropatriarchialism? The National Teachers Association (NEA) thinks so. And if so, your children will be taught that you are a bad person. What else might your kids hear you called this fall?

The NEA has released their plans to right all of America’s wrongs, beginning this fall, by indoctrinating your children with a mandatory K-12, race-based curriculum that assumes “white supremacy, anti-Blackness, racism, patriarchy, cisheteropatriarchy, capitalism, ableism, and anthropocentrism” are embedded in every aspect of American society.” All this, they say, “is reasonable and appropriate for kids.” Math, Language, Science, History, Geography and Technology be d—-d. If they do teach any course with one of those titles it will be laced with critical race theory and similar hogwash.

Cisheteropatriarchy is a system of male, heterosexual (straight), conforming-to-assigned sex system of power. Its primary expression is a husband’s authority over women and children in the family. In feminist theory, it is “a socio-political system where (primarily) cisgender males (males conforming to birth gender) and heterosexuals have authority over cisgender females and over other sexual orientations and gender identities. It is a term that emphasizes that discrimination of women and LGBTQ people has the same sexist social principle.”

Ableism is a set of beliefs or practices that devalue and discriminate against people with physical, intellectual, or psychiatric disabilities and often rests on the assumption that disabled people need to be ‘fixed’ in one form or the other,” writes Leah Smith in her blog for the Center for Disability Rights. For instance, schools must have elevators installed for those who use walkers or wheelchairs. Who would deny the equitableness of that? But notice “intellectual or psychiatric disabilities.” How will those people be “fixed”? You guessed it—indoctrination, re-education and re-orientation, you know, like the wonderful programs the communists set up in each of the countries they take over. Either get re-worked or go to the labor camps or the wall.

Anthropocentrism refers to a human-centered, or “anthropocentric,” point of view. This term can refer to the point of view that humans are the only, or primary, holders of moral standing, allowing animals, plants, mineral resources, etc., to be justifiably exploited—hunted, eaten, or utilized in other ways like tree-harvesting, plowing with animals, and burning oil to stay warm. Such utilization falls into their definition of “violence.”

Another word they are throwing around is “indigeneity.” What does it mean? It refers to various peoples who have moral claims on nation-states and on international society, often because of inhumane, unequal, and exclusionary treatment. For example, the Indians of North America. California teachers’ union casts the U.S. as “a parasitic system based on the invasion of white settlers.” A convenient historical twist to fit their narrative.

Speaking of a “parasitic system,” just take a stroll down the street past a Walgreen’s or a TJMaxx store while a bold, daylight shoplift is going on and watch them fill bags full of whatever they want and calmly walk out the door with it. No one stops them. That is what we are seeing today. Big city prosecutors and justice officials are in the pocket of BLM, so the perps know they will not be prosecuted. What a new world we live in.

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His commitment was “in the bag”

When the regular weekly Bible study teacher was unavailable for the study being conducted at the Shepherd AFB near Wichita Falls, TX in 1979, as pastor of the First UPC (now the Life Church), I substituted. Several airmen attended the study, one of whom was Willie Thornton. It was his first Bible study. He took it all in. He was back the next week and soon started attending our church on Sundays. One Sunday evening, I was preaching and kind of got excited so I jumped up on the altar bench as I preached. Things were moooooving in that service! Suddenly, Willie got up and walked slowly up the aisle to the end of the altar on which I was standing. What was he doing? He had a large bag in his hand which he placed on the end of altar and stood there. I continued preaching while also trying to figure out what Willie was doing down there. What was in that cloth bag? Was it drug paraphernalia? Some other symbol of his repentance? I came to a place in my preaching where I stopped and shouted: “Willie, what’s in the bag?”

In his slow southern drawl, he answered, “It’s my clothes, Brother Ensey. I want to be baptized in Jesus’ name!” After our little jubilee shout-down during which several were filled with the Spirit, I baptized Willie. Willie worshipped with us while at Shepherd AFB, acknowledging his call to ministry. He and his wife, who also prayed through, assisted Bro. Allan Abbey in California for several years. He then moved to Pine Bluff, AR to plant a much needed church in that city, where he still pastors the Calvary Evangelism Center. What a great team they have made for the Lord. Willie was among 23 others at SAFB who were converted that year. He and three others became ministers.

A few months ago, I visited them to personally honor Pastor Willie Thornton and his wife for the great work they have done and are doing in Pine Bluff and for his military service to our country. May God give us many more soldiers of the cross like them.

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None of your business?

“It is nobody’s business if a person chooses to take mind-bending drugs, or if there are countless drug users in our schools and on our streets. What they ingest is no one else’s business.”

Really? Wait until one of them steals your wife’s purse or car to pay for their habit. Or steals your daughter’s virginity then pleads before the judge: “I was under the influence of —— and didn’t know what I was doing. I’m sure sorry,” and soon walks free. Then say it was none of your business what drug addicts do to their own bodies. It is absolutely our business that drugs are readily available in our schools and streets. It is why your auto insurance is so high, and why the danger for women being out alone has increased exponentially.

This is why it is also our business what is going on at our southern border. The flow of immigrants is allowing a free flow of drugs into our country. The government is not stopping either of them.

The seeming aim of today’s liberals and socialists is to lead our youth and millennials into immorality, homelessness, theft, drug addiction, crimes of all categories, and other activities that are negative within our culture. Most police actions are the results of drugs or alcohol. The movie stars, sports icons, and celebrities of every stripe seem to be users, and by example are pushers. Big pharma, coupled with porous borders, are rapidly erasing the American dream. We must maintain the will to support the minority of leaders who uphold the laws of our society.

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Apostolic diversity

Multicultural pluralism, painted by liberals as “diversity,” is not an antidote for either real or perceived racism. It is a prescription for the collapse of the American experiment. The more pluralism is imposed on the culture, the closer we are to reverting to just another third world country.

Diversity of immigrants has always been part and parcel of the American experiment. That is how America climbed to the top of the world’s nations during the industrial revolution. Those coming here from many nations to participate in our freedoms, to adopt our work ethic and form of government, were vetted and welcomed.

Although America is not a theocracy, we should never be moved from the certitude that God was somehow involved in the planting of this nation, notwithstanding its shortcoming of some of its citizen/leaders. It has been the primary benefactor of missionary endeavors fanning the flames of worldwide endtime revival. The concept of adding more stand alone cultures rather than assimilating immigrants into the American system may well speed the demise of the nation and thus its evangelistic and missionary activities.

The NT mentions men and women of various nations who found salvation through Christ and the Apostolic gospel. But I find no example of any congregation in Scripture counting heads, shades of skin colors, or shapes of eyes in their audience with the objective, “We must find a balance here.” No NT olive-skinned Jew is on record saying, “We need more Asians, Africans, or white Europeans in our congregations.” All were welcomed without those considerations. Evangelism was practiced without such a divisive, discriminating approach. Salvation was presented with a “whosoever will” appeal.

A prophecy: Conceptual diversity approved at higher levels of authority is apt to become expanded and distorted as it is applied at lower levels. Pressures at the point of activation will virtually guarantee that. Consider this scenario: “Pastor, your approach to biblical interpretation/holiness/community involvement/politics do not align with our cultural feelings. You should be more sensitive to our way of thinking. Let us practice Christian living as we view it.” I doubt any committed pastor would say, “Oh, sure, y’all do it any way that is comfortable for you. No problem. We will work on our cultural sensitivity with some classes on how to accommodate your feelings. Please forgive us while we grovel in humility and repentance.” That’s the approach being taken by our secular culture and some major elements of Christianity.

Diversity in the sense expressed by some Christian leaders, college professors and millennials is NOT our strength. It is a short-sighted approach that undercuts what the founders of this republic had in mind and is helping to obliterate the American blessing of individual freedoms.

PS: Just so you know—although we are not bean counters, there is just about every eye shape and skin shade, as well as those of several national origins, in our local congregation.

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“…and perils among college professors…”

Consider the perils facing college students:

67% of college professors approve of homosexuality;
84% of professors approve of abortion;
65% embrace socialist and communist ideals;
88% of students from “Christian” homes depart from the teaching of their faith before they graduate from college (Pentecostals about 78-80%);
91% of students from evangelical churches do not believe in absolute moral truth.

We must teach our constituents biblical discernment and critical thinking. Instead of accepting the postulates of a godless society without examination, they should be able to analyze such ideas from a biblical worldview mindset.

The Apostle Paul advised: “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (Romans 12:2).

– Source: Those stats were published several years ago by Worldview Weekend; submitted by G. Jorge Medina. What would the percentages be today?

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Slavery in America

Why is it that research seems to show that slavery exists only in countries having a majority of people of color, particularly Islamic nations? The Muslim immigrants of Minneapolis who now run the city and the state’s Department of Justice, including the Attorney General, should attack slavery where it actually exists. Where is it active among any nation that is predominantly white? What is the skin color and the condoning religions of those nations where it still openly exists? They should consider this before assuming every white person in America is a white supremacist and equal to a slave owner. Or is the plan to eventually make every white person a slave to some degree?

Slavery in the “new world,” including America, was a British (or other colonizing nations active here) practice. As a colonial extension of the British Empire, some large landowners in America’s southern region used slaves which had been captured in Africa by their own tribal leaders and sold to traders and ship owners who brought them here. The British saw the handwriting on the wall and in 1772 banished slavery from the homeland. We finally freed ourselves from the British in 1783 (Treaty of Paris).

Subsequently, American leaders began systematic campaigns to eliminate the practice, renouncing it in most states soon thereafter. For the sake of national unity and to avoid endless wars plaguing most European nations, the original Constitution made no immediate room for sweeping laws to stop the practice. Most present at the Constitutional Convention believed slavery was on its way to extinction in the country. However, the invention of the cotton gin in 1794 revolutionized farming in the south that slowed the process. However, in 1808 the nation disallowed the importation of slaves to the U.S. Slaveholding was repudiated and abolished entirely in 1863 under President Lincoln. Those who continue to clamor about slavery in America are beating a dead horse. We put an end to it in all sections of the country 158 years ago and gradually gave full rights and benefits to all whose forebears had been slaves. No one in America would favor a return to the practice. So back off. The poorest or most uneducated among descendants of former slaves has the same voting right and voice in elections as the wealthiest and most powerful persons in America.

Even the sordid elements within America that force or pay people to come here to be used as “sexual slaves” (human trafficking) seem to be people of color (48% are Hispanic) or non-citizens. Why aren’t they being condemned by the radical left? U.S. government agents and police have traditionally fought human trafficking with gusto. Our Constitution states that all people are created equal and all citizens enjoy equal justice under the law. However, that does not guarantee that all men are equal in morals, equal in ability, equal in motivation, equal in vision, or equal in any personal measure, regardless of skin color. To bring that closer to reality, America built a society that encourages people of all backgrounds to be educated, informed, and motivated to become unswerving advocates of both corporate and personal freedom. That society should not be dismantled lest all Americans become slaves to a government fueled by oligarchs.

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Why not?

Over a decade ago, the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles joined seven other dioceses in passing a resolution advocating lesbians as well as homosexual men as bishops. That was the agenda all along among the activists. The “big umbrella” just kept getting bigger. Do this and then it will be simple to demand this. When we then get that, we will be in position to take an even bigger prize. One step at a time. Apostolics must remember there are no easy exits on the freeway to compromise.

Archbishop John Chrysostom (c. 347-407) of Constantinople is often referred to by feminists as an advocate for women in Christian leadership because of his use of them as deaconesses. But when the matter of leadership arose, he wrote, “When one is required to preside over the Church, and be entrusted with the care of so many souls, the whole female sex must retire before the magnitude of the task, and the majority of men also.” – Quoted by Alice C. Linsley, a former Episcopal priest, at https://virtueonline.org/ten-objections-women-priests in her article “Ten Objections to Women Priests.”

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Why…?

by J. R. Ensey

Some younger men have called for reasons that specific holiness standards appear in the UPCI Manual. They were not around when the issues were debated and passed in conferences. It is easier in today’s cultural climate to give up the fight than to take the time to find out why Pentecostals believe what we do. Here are 224 pages of some common sense, Word-based answers for our apostolic positions.
Chapters:

• Why do Apostolics embrace the Bible as the Word of God?

• Why do Apostolics teach monotheism?

• Why do Apostolics receive the Holy Spirit and speak in tongues?

• Why do Apostolics disengage from a worldly lifestyle?

• Why do Apostolics abandon or avoid harmful personal practices?

• Why do Apostolics choose modest apparel and shun ornamental
jewelry?

• Why do Apostolic ladies refrain from cutting their hair and wearing
cosmetics?

• Why do Apostolics live with a blessed hope?

“Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander” (I Peter 3:15,16).

AM Price $12.95

Evidential Tongues

by J. R. Ensey
Here is some vital research on a doctrine and practice we hold as foundational—speaking in tongues when one receives the Holy Spirit.

The fact that many in the classical Pentecostal movement have ceased to stress this aspect of the new birth experience  disturbes us. It behooves us to occasionally take a harder look at our fundamental doctrines—not to try to disprove them but to make sure that the girders of truth are still bearing the load of centuries of attacks. To shore up our principal doctrines for each new generation is imperative.

The book walks through the Acts of the Apostles to verify the consistency of the doctrine in the early church. But what happened to it after the first century? Research was done to highlight glossolalia (speaking in tongues) throughout the Dark Ages, into the Reformation period, during the development of various Protestant denominations, and on to Topeka and Azusa St. How it became a tenet of faith in the burgeoning Pentecostal movement is covered. Current views climax the study.

This is a historical odyssey that will strengthen your faith.

AM Price $7.95

To order books go to https://www.advanceministries.org/zencart

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Canst thou believe…?

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The Last Word (for pastors’ wives only):

“Jesus wept” (John 11:35) is the shortest verse in the Bible.

The story is told that Jesus made a quick return to earth for a visit. He came upon a lame man, had compassion on him and healed his leg. Further down the road, Our Lord came upon a blind man, had compassion on him, and healed him.

A little further, Jesus came upon a woman sitting on the curb sobbing her heart out. Jesus asked her what was wrong. The woman cried out in tearful agony, “I’m a pastor’s wife!”

Jesus sat down beside her, put His arm around her…and wept with her.

-Anonymous

Have the best growth in your church ever…in August! And send the link to this blog to a friend.

JREnsey

Published in: on August 1, 2021 at 12:17 AM  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Again, GOOD STUFF!!!
    Thanks much for compiling and publishing this!!! I do enjoy reading this every month!!!
    Buddy Casto


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