When Jesus came to the Earth and selected a few men to follow Him as He ministered to the masses, even those closest to Jesus expected Him to set up an earthly, political kingdom. So, when Jesus began to talk with His disciples about “going away” to a place they could not come, they were understandably confused. They were ready to crown Jesus as King of Jerusalem, not realizing that the crown of thorns placed Jesus’ head at His crucifixion would be the moment He would be crowned as King of Kings. Yet Jesus, full of love and compassion, gently reassured their unsettled hearts by telling them that, though He was going away, He would send another Comforter.
While Jesus was on the Earth, the enemy was seeking to extinguish Jesus’ life and purpose, but Jesus knew that after His death, the enemy would seek the life and purpose of His disciples (John 10:10). Jesus desired to no longer dwell with them, but in them, thereby becoming their defense against the powers of darkness. Jesus instructed His disciples to wait in Jerusalem for the gift the Father had promised, and “they shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now (Acts 1:5).” Fifty days after the resurrection, as they sat in one place in one accord, they heard a sound like a rushing mighty wind. The Holy Spirit filled each one of them and they spoke in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance (Acts 2:1-4).
Though the Scriptures reference both the Holy Ghost and the Holy Spirit, we should be careful to not get caught up in semantics. A ghost or a spirit is the presence of a “departed one”, and while Jesus, in a physical form, is no longer here on the Earth, His Spirit is with us and in us. The Holy Spirit operating in our lives gives us power (Acts 1:8) to defeat Satan and his devices warring against us. We must remember that the Holy Spirit is not an “it” but is the third person of the Godhead functioning with a purpose and personality.
The Bible cautions us on specific ways in which we should treat the Holy Spirit. First, we should never quench or resist the Spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:19). The Holy Spirit serves as a gauge in our lives often leading us in the way we should go. When we sense His presence and feel His pull, we must be quick to yield to Him. Secondly, we should not grieve the Spirit (Ephesians 4:30). Engaging in sinful activity that is contrary to God’s Word can leave us feeling a deep sense of our wrongdoing. From bitterness to fits of rage, we often immediately feel the conviction of the Holy Spirit telling us that we have done something that isn’t pleasing to Him. While grieving the Holy Spirit is nearly inevitable because of our humanity, remember that when we confess our sins, God is faithful to forgive us and cleanse us of offense (1 John 1:9). Lastly, we must never blaspheme the Holy Spirit (Mark 3:29). This word blaspheme means that, once we know the Holy Spirit and His power, we must never curse, insult, slander, or speak against the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is a wonderful gift to us as believers. Whether you need comfort, power, or direction, He is in you to help you live victoriously! Join us Sundays at 3 pm online or in person at Regeneration Nashville as we worship God in Spirit and truth! Until then, may God bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you. Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
When we open our Bibles to page one and begin to read the first few words, we find a startling picture. The green, lush Earth in which we live and are most familiar was empty and covered in water. It had no shape, no purpose, no plan. Darkness consumed every square inch of the surface, drowning all possibility of hope, goodness, and life. It seems that it was the end before the beginning even began. But then the writer gives us the one sentence that changes everything, “the Spirit of God was hovering.” Instantly, death is swallowed up in victory before a word is even spoken. When the Spirit of God is present, life, in its fullness, is bulging at the seams awaiting its invitation to burst onto a limitless canvas. While the darkness and chaos were wreaking their havoc, they could only penetrate the surface but never reach the foundation. 2 Timothy 2:19 reminds us that “God’s firm foundation stands,” and again in 1 Corinthians 3:11, “For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.”
From the creation story onward, we see that God loves cycles and patterns. From simple experiences like sunrise and sunset to the more complex cycles of the four seasons, we find the saying generally true, “what goes around, comes around.” This idea seems to be carried through even in historical and socioeconomic patterns encountered by each generation. I’ve heard people balk at bringing children into such an unstable and evil world and witnessed many concerned that an apocalypse is nearly at hand, all because they recognize the chaos and evil that cycles around us. However, the truth to which we must cling is that God’s Spirit is hovering over the Earth, and this darkness and turmoil are only surface deep. The foundation has been laid and is impenetrable, Jesus Christ, the Righteous!
Fortunately for us, this is a truth that our enemy and his cohorts never seem to learn. The Gospel writer, Luke, paints a vivid portrait of Jesus, tortured, mocked, and nailed to a wooden cross, drawing His last breath and dying. As the Light of the World seemed to be extinguished by hell and its devices, the sky again turned black, and darkness consumed the Earth. The same chaos and evil that God conquered in Genesis seized its opportunity to overtake the world again, and it seemed as though it had won. But, oh friend, God’s Spirit was hovering. Though they laid Jesus’ lifeless body in a tomb, the Spirit of resurrection life did the miraculous, the impossible, the unthinkable. Jesus rose from the dead, conquering death, hell, and the grave, and the powers of darkness were rendered ineffective! For death was only on the surface, and the foundation which was laid could not be penetrated.
The Apostle Paul reminds us in Romans 8:11, “But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.” How marvelous to know that the same Spirit that hovered over the waters in Genesis 1 and that raised Jesus from the dead lives in you and me! While we may look at the darkness within the world or even the chaos within our hearts, we must remember that we are not without hope. I feel the Spirit of God hovering today, and I’m filled with anticipation! Resurrection life is on the way, and God is moving in His church and His people!
Join us Sundays at 3 pm online or in person at Regeneration Nashville and come anticipating what God will do! Until then, may God bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you. Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
The first century AD seems about as foreign to us as a man on Mars, but most often, we find that spanning the centuries, people are just people. Judas was a popular name given to most little boys coming from the Hebrew word “Judah,” meaning praise. And as the Jewish boys ran in the streets, having foot races and throwing rocks, Roman soldiers marched through the village, imposing their Roman ways. The people of Israel wrestled with their Jewish identity in a Roman world. They desperately hoped that their Messiah would come quickly to restore a government no longer under Roman control. Suddenly, a man appeared on the scene claiming to be the fulfillment of all for which the Jews were praying, and while young Judas didn’t know exactly what was going on, He looked at this man, Jesus, and dropped everything to follow him.
When Jesus began His ministry, He chose twelve young men to follow Him as He taught the people and performed miracles. While the Bible isn’t clear on “why” Jesus chose each disciple, it is possible that He looked for men that had the potential to one day further the Kingdom of God. Peter would one day preach a sermon on the day of Pentecost bringing thousands to Christ. Thomas would carry the Gospel to India one day, while Thaddeus and Bartholomew would evangelize Armenia. But what would Judas do? His possibilities were endless, and Jesus allowed him to stay close and watch over the finances because Jesus saw Judas’ potential. But as the old saying goes, “familiarity breeds contempt.” After a woman poured oil on Jesus’ feet, which Judas felt should have been sold for a profit and donated to the poor, the initial enthusiasm of a young Jewish boy who left it all to follow the up-and-comer had now faded to frustration and disdain. Unfortunately, we know the outcome of the story. Judas betrayed Jesus for some money, the source of his initial offense, and eventually took his own life.
This story of human frailty is relatable to many of us who may have known Jesus as a youth. Maybe it was one night at a youth camp that Jesus became real to you, and through tears, you surrendered your life to Him. Perhaps you had a private encounter where Jesus spoke to your heart so plainly, and His power and love radically changed you. But as the years have passed, through disappointing circumstances, church hurt, and the busyness of life, you find that the initial passion and zeal with which you first found Jesus has diminished into indifference and casualness. While waxing and waning cycles are natural to life, they can be treacherous territory for our walk with Jesus. In Revelation 2, Jesus says to the church at Ephesus, “I know your works, your labor, your patience…but you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first work.”
Oh, friend, I hear a clarion call from Heaven today urging us to look again within our hearts. Have we left our first love? Have we allowed our love for the Lord to grow cold and our devotion for Him to fade into the background of our life? Remember that His arms are always open wide, and He is “slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love” (Exodus 34:6). If we confess our wrongdoing, He is faithful to forgive us and wash us clean again (1 John 1:9). Let us not go another day, another moment without making sure that we are in right standing with Jesus. As the lyrics of an old hymn remind us, “Softly and tenderly Jesus is calling, calling for you and for me.”
Join us Sundays at 3 pm online or in person at Regeneration Nashville as we worship the Lord together in spirit and in truth. Until then, may God bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you. Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
The word “holy” is one of those churchy words we hear from time to time. We might use the term to refer to the sacraments like “Holy Communion” or even to talk about the “Holy Bible.” But what does it mean exactly to be holy? How does holiness translate into everyday living when God says, “Be holy for I am holy” (Leviticus 11:44-45, 1 Peter 1:16)?
It doesn’t take long to stumble upon the word holy when reading the scriptures. In Genesis 2:3, God calls the seventh day of creation “holy” and differentiates it by resting instead of creating as He did on the other six days. Later in Exodus 3:5, we read the famous story of Moses standing at the burning bush and hearing God say, “Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground.” God told Moses that where He dwells becomes a holy place, different from other ordinary and mundane places. Holiness means to be separate, pure, and other-than. We see that it isn’t necessarily a time (Sabbath) or a space (particular ground) that makes God holy, but God, Himself, is holy, making the time and space in which He dwells holy.
In Leviticus, we read quite a bit about being “clean” or “pure.” Because God is pure and separate from sin and death, those who come into His presence must also be pure and separate from sin and death. But God also knows that humans make mistakes, so He gave the Israelites 603 laws, including animal sacrifices. Humans could then become clean and “holy” after failing and again enter into His presence. But we know that those ways of becoming holy could never last, so God sent His Son, Jesus, as the ultimate sacrifice to take away our sins and make us a holy people. This process is referred to as another long, churchy word called “sanctification” or “the action of making or declaring something holy.”
So, is that it? Once we are saved, are we permanently holy? Remember that once we are saved, we become God’s people, and we are set free from our sins and the shame and guilt that sin brings, but we must also continue to try and live a life as Jesus lived. In John 14:15, Jesus said, “If you love Me, keep My commandments.” It’s vitally important that we never think this scripture says God will love us if we keep His commandments. Romans 5:8 tells us, “But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” But to show our love for God, we keep His commandments to be holy and set apart from the rest of the world as God’s children. Some of the ways we do this are by staying morally pure (1 Corinthians 6:9-19), not using inappropriate language (1 Peter 3:10), attending church (Hebrews 10:25), and loving one another (John 13:34).
Keeping God’s commandments seems similar to the impossible task of the Israelites trying to keep the 603 laws. But don’t let your heart faint, friend! God sent us the Holy Spirit as our Helper and Counselor who will teach us what we should do and remind us of what God has said (John 14:26). Being led by the Holy Spirit is our key to holiness, and all it takes is to trust Him and yield to Him as He prompts us to make adjustments. Remember that God loves you, is for you, and has a beautiful plan for your life (Jeremiah 29:11). Join us Sundays at 3 pm online or in person at Regeneration Nashville as we worship God together and see Him move by the power of the Holy Spirit! Until then, may God bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you. Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
Have you ever struggled to keep the faith? Have you ever felt the tug of war between the natural circumstances you see with your eyes and the faith you feel inside your heart? Have you ever wanted to cry out the words of Mark 9:24, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” All too often, it seems that unbelief tries to cast a gloomy shadow over the miraculous things that God wants to do in us and through us. But take heart, friend, because God has given us all the measure of faith (Romans 12:3, KJV), and we can believe!
In Luke 5, the disciples came to Jesus and asked that He increase their faith. Jesus responded that if they had faith the size of a mustard seed, they could move a mountain. In essence, Jesus didn’t need to increase their faith, but they needed to exercise the faith that they already had inside of them. But how do we tap into the faith we already have? Faith is dependent mainly on who’s voice to which we are listening. Romans 10:17 says that “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” When we listen to what God is saying, our faith is stirred up to believe and allow God to do all that He has purposed.
Unbelief is the opposite of faith and is defined as “faithless, unbeliever, and weakness of faith.” So, if faith comes by hearing, then unbelief also comes by hearing. Unbelief will always challenge the Word of God and creeps into our hearts when we listen to other voices other than the Holy Spirit. This is why we must “crucify our flesh” daily, or in other words, deny the passions and desires we felt before we were saved. When we allow our senses to become our voice of reason instead of the Holy Spirit, we will continuously operate in unbelief and never fully grasp all God has for us. But when we allow the Holy Spirit to speak to our hearts and we act in faith, the possibilities are endless!
Acting in faith requires risk. In Matthew 14, we find the famous story of Peter walking on water. He believed that it was the Lord calling to Him from the sea, and he took a risk, climbed over the side of the boat, and walked on the water. Mark 5 reminds us of the story of the woman with the issue of blood that touched Jesus’ robe. Although the doctors could not help her and she had spent all she had, she believed Jesus could heal her and pressed through the crowd. She risked being trampled and humiliated but acted in faith and received her healing.
In John 14:12, we read the familiar words of Jesus when He said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in Me will also do the works that I do, and greater works than these will he do because I am going to the Father.” Jesus tells us that if we believe in Him, we will do the same miraculous works He did and even more, but remember, we must believe! Although at times, we may waver because we are humans, all we must do is cry out like the man in Mark 9:24, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” and God promises to be an ever-present help (Psalm 46:1).
Join us Sundays at 3 pm online or in person at Regeneration Nashville as we unite in faith together and see God do the miraculous! Until then, may God bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you. Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
Light of the World
Many of us who have grown up in church might think back to the little songs we sang that taught us wonderful scriptural principles. I think of songs like “Deep & Wide,” “I’m In the Lord’s Army,” or my personal favorite, “This Little Light of Mine .”As I reflect on Matthew 5:14-16, I wonder what Jesus meant by telling us that we are the “light of the world” and what it truly means to let our light shine. For most biblical questions, we should start at the beginning of our Bible and trace the theme all the way through. So, let’s flip to the first page.
The first chapter of Genesis is one of the most explosive chapters in our Bible. We learn that the Earth was covered entirely in water, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface. Then, God shatters the silence and thunders out of the darkness, “Let there be light,” and there was light! It is so incredible that it wasn’t until the fourth day of creation that God created the sun, moon, and stars. So, we find ourselves asking, “Where did the light come from”? The light was none other than the manifestation of the glory of God, Himself! He is the Light!
In the second book of our Bible, Exodus, we are introduced to Moses, who is a type of the Messiah to come. While Moses didn’t always do everything right, he is portrayed as the righteous intercessor who intercedes for the people as Jesus intercedes for us (Romans 8:34). He also stands on a mountain and gives the people of God the law as Jesus will stand on a mountain and give the law (Matthew 5). And Moses performs many miracles foreshadowing the miraculous ministry of Jesus. Exodus 34 tells a compelling story of Moses climbing Mt. Sinai to receive the commandments from God, but when he comes back down to the people, his face is shining like a light! After being in the manifestation of the glory of God, Moses cannot help but beam with radiance to the people around him! Daniel 12:3 (ESV) allows us to understand a bit further by saying, “And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.”
Since Moses is a type of Christ, and we know the Biblical writers love to carry out themes, we now will most likely find Jesus shining too. The transfiguration of Jesus is a fascinating story found in Matthew 17. Matthew tells us that Jesus climbed a mountain, like Moses, and was wholly transformed before His disciple’s eyes! His clothes became bright like light, and His face shone like the sun! In this moment of transfiguration, Jesus is seen glowing and talking to two figures, one of which is Moses. Suddenly, we hear God’s voice thunder from Heaven saying, “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased; listen to Him” (Matthew 17:5). Jesus tells us in John 5:9 that as long as He is in the world, He is the light of the world. Jesus then goes on to say in John 8:12 that if we follow Him, we won’t walk in darkness but will have the light of life.
These ideas bring us back to our start of Matthew 5:14-16, where Jesus tells us that we are the light of the world and a city on a hill that cannot be hidden. When we accept Jesus into our hearts, we are filled with His light shining through us into this dark world. And as we travel our journey up to Zion’s Holy Mountain, we become a beacon of hope for the world to see, bringing the light of His glory to the nations. Oh, friend, it is marvelous to know that we aren’t doomed to a life of darkness, but we can walk in the light as He is in the light, have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all our sins (1 John 1:7)! Join us Sundays at Regeneration Nashville online or in-person as we celebrate the Light of the World, Jesus Christ! Until then, may God bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you. Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
When we read the Old Testament, we find a powerful foreshadowing of things to come in the New Testament. The Bible specializes in patterns and culminates in beautifully rich, full-circle moments where types and shadows are realized. Jesus said in Matthew 5:17 that He came to fulfill the law, referring to much of the first five books of the Bible (the Torah or Law Books).
One of the major themes we see in the Old Testament is the sacrifice of animals to atone (or make amends) for man's sin. Because Yahweh God is holy, He cannot be with those unholy, so to have fellowship with God, there must be payment for our sins. Each year, the high priest in Israel would go into the Temple on the Day of Atonement to shed the blood of an animal and place that blood on the mercy seat, located on the lid of the Ark of the Covenant between two angelic figures. This act would not pay for Israel's sins but would push their sins forward until the following year. In Exodus 25:9, Yahweh tells Moses to model the Tabernacle precisely like the one in Heaven that Yahweh will show him. By this, we know that the high priest's sacrifices must foreshadow an event to come where the blood of a pure sacrifice will be placed on the mercy seat in Heaven.
In the New Testament, the Gospels tell the glorious redemptive story of Jesus's death, burial, resurrection, and ascension. John 1 begins by showing us that "The Word" was in the beginning, was with God, and was God. Then the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. This same Word is Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, Emmanuel- God with us. Jesus is sinless and the only one who could make a pure and final sacrifice to atone for our sins and give us fellowship again with the Father. John believes that Jesus is the ultimate sacrifice because he paints a beautiful portrait at the end of his Gospel where Mary is looking for Jesus but only sees where He was laid. Jesus' grave clothes are in the center, with angelic figures on each side, just like the mercy seat on the Ark of the Covenant (John 20)! In that same chapter, Mary finds Jesus, and Jesus responds by saying, "Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father." Yet, later that evening, we find Jesus meeting with His disciples and telling them, "See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me and see" (Luke 24:39). So, what occurred between that morning and that evening that allowed Jesus to be handled by his followers?
In Luke 16:19-31, we find the captivating story of the rich man and Lazarus. This passage shows that, before Christ's resurrection, Hades was divided into two realms: a place of comfort where Lazarus was held (Abraham's bosom) and a place of torment where the rich man was held (hell or "Gehenna" in the Greek in Mark 9:45). Lazarus's place of comfort is called "paradise" (Luke 23:43). Between paradise and hell (the two districts of Hades/Sheol), there was "a great chasm" (Luke 16:26). Ephesians 4:8-9 goes on to tell us that Jesus descended into the lower parts of the Earth to lead captivity captive, or in other words, to bring resurrection to the saints held in Abraham's bosom. In Matthew 27:52-53, we see these resurrected saints walking the streets of Jerusalem after Jesus was resurrected. Meanwhile, Ephesians 4:8-9 then says that Jesus ascended far above the heavens to fulfill all things. Paul, in Hebrews 9:11-12, sums up the event perfectly by saying, "But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect Tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption."
It is truly a life-changing revelation to know that Jesus paid the price for our sins, once and for all! When our accuser comes to remind us of our failures and past sins, we can claim the blood of Jesus shed for us at Calvary and placed on Heaven's mercy seat! Then our Father will look at Jesus' sacrifice and declare us, "Not guilty!" Oh, friend, we are free from our guilt and shame! We are a new creation in Christ Jesus! Join us on Sundays at 3 pm, in person or online, as we celebrate the Son who has set us free indeed! May the Lord bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you. Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
In Matthew 16:18, we read Jesus' famous words that He boldly declared to His disciples, "On this rock, I will build My church." When we break down these five words, we find each word has a Divine purpose; "I": The Divine Builder; "Will": The Divine Decree; "Build": The Divine Method; "My": The Divine Title Deed; and "Church": The Divine Structure. Let's look together at a few of these powerful words and what Jesus was announcing as His Kingdom.
"I": The Divine Builder
The church that Jesus proposes is built on His deity, emphasizing the word "I." Moses asked who he should say sent him and Yahweh replied, "I AM THAT I AM" (Exodus 3:14). In John 6:35, Jesus says, "I AM the Bread of Life," and in John 8:58, Jesus says, "Before Abraham was, I AM." In Revelation 1:8, Jesus says, "I AM the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End." Does He have credentials to build a church? He is the same I AM who turned 70 souls into 3.5 million people called Israel, turned a rock into a river, turned a sea into a highway, and conquered death, hell, and the grave by the Easter tomb! Can He build a church in 2022? The church in the wilderness, the church in the upper room, the church in the dark ages, and the church today answers with a thundering, "YES, HE CAN!"
"I Will": The Divine Decree
Jesus decrees with His message from the beginning: I will lay down my glory and robe Myself in ordinary flesh. I will enter the world through the womb of a young virgin, and I will grow into a man. I will lay down My life, and I will let My blood be shed for My people. I will ascend to My Father, and I will put My blood on the mercy seat. I will fill my church with My nature and empower them, excite them, and defend them. I will activate them with the baptism of the Holy Ghost and turn them loose on the Earth. I will say preach the Gospel of the great I AM!
"I Will Build": The Divine Method
Jesus knew the time would come when men would not be able to endure sound doctrine, but the command to preach the Gospel was never rescinded. Before Jesus can come back for the church, He says the Gospel must be preached in all the world, and then the end shall be (Matthew 24:14). Nothing will ever replace the preaching of the Gospel, for it is like a hammer that breaks rocks into little pieces (Jeremiah 23:29) and pulls down the stone walls of the prisons. 1 Corinthians 1:21 says, "It pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe." The preaching of the Gospel can do what man can never do and is the Divine Method God has chosen in these last days. PREACH THE WORD!
His Church: The Divine Materials
When one builds a home, one chooses the best materials one can afford. But Jesus chose us as lively stones to use for His materials. Instead of perfection, He has chosen the twisted, the rotten, the broken, and the bruised. He has rescued us from the ashes. He's buried us in baptism and changed our nature. Then He declares, "This is my glorious church that the gates of Hell shall not prevail against." In our cesspool of sin, in our unusable condition, the Master Carpenter saw His purpose for us, washed us in His blood, and made us whole, beautiful, delivered, and radiating the glory of God!
In 1 Corinthians 1:27, we learn that God has chosen the foolish things to put to shame the wise. The way God brings about His plan will never be the world's way, and the people He chooses will never be the people the world would choose. But oh friend, aren't we grateful that God has chosen US! We are the people of God! We are His Glorious Church! Join us on Sundays online or in person at Regeneration Nashville as we gather as part of the global church to worship our Savior, Jesus Christ. May God bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you until next week. Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
Inheritance is a word that fills our imagination with possibilities. Scammers love to tell us that a distant relative or a wealthy benefactor has left us a fortune to which we are legally entitled if we only give them our personal information to make the exchange. Receiving something extraordinary just because of who we are and not because of what we’ve done seems too good to be true but remember, “With God all things are possible (Matthew 19:26)”.
In Numbers 13, we read that Moses sent twelve men to spy out the land God had promised to give to Israel as an inheritance. While there were giants in Canaan, Joshua and Caleb were the only two spies who brought back a faith-filled report to Moses declaring that God would surely give Israel their inheritance. Forty years later, in Joshua 14, Caleb is now 85 years old and is still believing for the inheritance God promised him. He asked Joshua for Hebron, which means fellowship, and the Bible says it was given to Caleb “Because he wholly followed the Lord God of Israel (v.14)”. When we wholly follow the Lord, one of the benefits we will receive is fellowship with God our Father, and in our secret place with Him, He will sustain us with strength, truth, and joy.
When the twelve spies went secretly to see the Promise Land, Israel saw that their enemy had already possessed what God had given them. Our enemy will always want to live in our inheritance, but “You and I have an inheritance that the enemy cannot touch.” Just as God drove out Israel’s adversary and gave them the land, God will also go before us and drive out obstacles and circumstances that seem impossible. Don’t give up your inheritance for temporary peace! “If God be for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31).
Throughout the Scriptures, we find that God the Father has given all things to His son, Jesus (Luke 10:22, John 3:35, Matthew 28:18). Jesus has all power and authority, and everything is in submission to Him. Romans 8:29 goes on to say that Jesus is the firstborn among many brothers. Since we are in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17), and all things have been given to Him, then friend, all things have been given to us! We have authority and power over our enemy and have obtained an inheritance in Christ Jesus!
So, what is our inheritance? First and foremost, God gives us Eternal Life (John 10:28). When we confess Jesus with our mouths and believe in our hearts that God raised Him from the dead, then we are saved, and sin no longer has power over us (Romans 10:9). God also gives us Divine Authority over the enemy (Luke 10:19) and tells us that “No weapon formed against us shall prosper” (Isaiah 54:17). Divine Healing is the right of every believer, and Mark 16:18 tells us that we will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover. While there are many aspects to the inheritance God has promised us, we must never forget that God has given us the nations (Psalm 2:8). More than ever, it is imperative that we tell others about Jesus. We must tell our neighbors, our friends, and those that God puts in our path that there is hope, peace, and life in Jesus!
I want to invite you to join Regeneration Nashville, in person or online, as we worship our Savior together and share His Good News around the world! Come be a part of what God is doing and be Renewed, Restored, Revived! Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
Have you ever felt like you’re in a wilderness? Maybe you feel hidden away, and if someone would only see your potential, you could finally fulfill your purpose. Pastor Kent Christmas preached a life-changing message on Sunday and shared with us that sometimes God hides us to protect us, develop us, or hold us until He is ready to reveal us for His glory. In Romans 8:18-22, Paul tells us that our current sufferings will pale in comparison with the glory that will be revealed in us!
God speaks about hiding us and protecting us throughout Scripture (Psalm 32:7, Psalm 27:5, Psalm 91). In the book of Exodus, the children of Israel were enslaved in bondage by Pharoah and desperately cried out to God for a deliverer. Because Satan knew God was preparing a man to bring freedom to God’s people, Pharoah issued orders to kill all newborn Hebrew boys. But Moses’s mother saw that God’s favor was upon Moses, and she hid him to protect him from the evil laws emplaced to kill him. In God’s divine providence, He had Pharoah raise up a deliverer in his own house, never knowing that his little grandson, Moses, would defeat Pharoah and the powers of darkness to bring freedom to an entire nation. God’s ways are not our ways, and although we can’t always understand what He is doing, He strategically places us within the enemy’s camp to bring victory to God’s people!
As a young man, Moses fled from Pharoah in fear after Moses killed another man, but God led Moses until the wilderness, not only for his protection but also for his development. In the wilderness, God showed Moses he would deliver the Israelites from Pharoah, yet Moses remained for forty years in the process. Sometimes when God hides you, it’s because He is adding to your arsenal. The Lord will create gifts in you that you’ve never had and increase your anointing. Moses ran from Pharoah in fear, but he returned with a new spirit of authority when God uncovered him. Our Pastor so beautifully reminded us that “God does His best work in you when He has you hidden.”
Isaiah 49:2 says, “And He has made my mouth like a sharp sword; in the shadow of His hand, He has hidden me, and made me a polished shaft; in His quiver He has hidden me.” Although we may endure years of God shaping us and feel ready to be used for His purpose, we still find ourselves hidden in His quiver. Arrows are always made before the battle because there isn’t time for arrows to be produced when the target is revealed. God has carefully crafted each one of us for His purpose and hides until the target comes into view. Then suddenly, when the enemy appears, He has just the right arrow to destroy the powers of darkness.
Often in hiding, discouragement will weigh us down and make us question God’s love and plan for us. Discouragement will keep us from prayer, from God’s Word, and from hearing the Voice of the Lord. Remember that praise is a weapon! When we begin to trade “the spirit of heaviness for the garment of praise (Isaiah 61:3),” the atmosphere changes, and victory is loosed! Don’t let the enemy sidetrack you from the process and purpose of God! What God protects, He sustains!
Be encouraged this week that, while God may have you hidden, He sees you and holds you in the palm of His hand. You are loved, you are called, you are chosen. God only hides us for a season, but oh believer, the glory that He will reveal! Join us next week, online or in-person, at Regeneration Nashville for another inspiring message from Pastor Kent and a powerful time in the presence of the Lord! Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
What a powerful word Pastor Kent released to our church this past Sunday, March 13, 2022. I encourage you to go back and listen to this rich teaching again and allow the Holy Spirit to reveal new things to you as He has to me. You can find Pastor Kent’s message on our Facebook page and through Livestream on our website.
Pastor Kent began by sharing Hebrews 10:5, “Therefore, when Christ came into the world, He said: ‘Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me.’” At that time in history, God the Father honored the blood of animals as an atonement for the sins of Israel, but the Father desired a more perfect sacrifice. God came to Earth as flesh to atone for our sins once and for all in Jesus. But the moment Jesus was born, Hell tried to kill Him because He was the manifested presence of God in the Earth (Colossians 2:9). Satan did not want Jesus on the Earth because He has all power and authority over the Kingdom of darkness.
We remember that when God created the first Adam in the garden, He said it wasn’t good for Adam to be alone (Genesis 2:18). God caused Adam to go to sleep, and in the position of rest, and out of Adam’s side, God created a companion for him. It was not God’s intention for Adam to accomplish the will of God without a wife. God also desired a wife for Jesus, or as 1 Corinthians 15:45 calls Him, the Last Adam. When God created a wife for Jesus at Calvary, the Father allowed Christ to “sleep” in the grave and birthed the church from Jesus’s pierced side. In victory, Jesus arose from the grave because He did not rise alone but rose with a companion called the church.
When Jesus was on the Earth, there was no greater power on the Earth than Him. He has authority over demon spirits and gives us that same power. His Name is all-powerful, and when we speak the Name of Jesus, whether, in praise or cursing, we invoke His authority. Ephesians 2:10-11 says, “That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Jesus resurrected at the Feast of First Fruits because He is the “first fruit of many brethren (Romans 8:29)” and then walked with his disciples for forty days. Ten days later, after Jesus’s ascension, on the Day of Pentecost, God loosed the Holy Spirit on the church, empowering her with the nature of her husband. A marriage took place in the Spirit, and Jesus became one with the church. Jesus gave the church everything that He operated in when He was on the Earth. We read in John 14:12, “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do because I go to My Father.”
God honors the church because she was purchased by the blood of Jesus Christ and not by bulls and goats. The church is under siege today because Satan knows that we carry the same anointing, power, and authority in us that Christ carried while on the Earth. The Devil should not intimidate us “because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world (1 John 4:4).” Pastor Kent passionately reminds us, “The church is going to destroy the powers of darkness.” Remember that the enemy will always desire to silence you and make you feel hopeless, but God hears the cry of His people! He will not allow us to be overcome by the enemy, for He has overcome the world (John 16:33)! Pastor Kent encourages us by saying, “If you want to be strong in the Lord, find a church, sell out, get involved, pray, shake the nations!”
If you do not have a church body, we invite you today to become an online or in-person member of Regeneration Nashville. We are the Body of Christ, and we are stronger together! We want to pray with you, believe with you, and see God accomplish His purpose in and through you! Be sure to subscribe below to our weekly sermon recap blog and join us next Sunday for another powerful message from Pastor Kent Christmas! Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,
We hope you could join us on Sunday for Pastor Kent’s powerful message on Foundations. Being built on a firm foundation is imperative to weathering the storms we face. Pastor reminded us that God loves foundations and that He, Himself, laid the foundation of the earth (Psalms 102:25, Hebrews 1:10, Isaiah 28:16). There are three aspects of a Biblical foundation laid out in Ephesians 2:19-20, which are apostles, prophets, and Jesus Christ as the Chief Cornerstone. “Everything about the church should point to one thing…Jesus”, says Pastor.
The main text of the message was 2 Timothy 2:19a, “Nevertheless, the foundation of God standeth sure.” Our Pastor boldly encouraged us that “When we see the failure of people that are supposed to be our protectors… educators, ministers, politicians… ‘Nevertheless, the foundation of God standeth sure. When all hell breaks loose, when elections are upside down, when politicians become traitors, when cancer and Covid are out of control… ‘Nevertheless, the foundation of God standeth sure.” When our lives are built on the foundation of Jesus Christ, we can have confidence knowing that, while everything may fail around us, we are built on a foundation that will last!
We must remember that our nation, the United States of America, was founded on the Lord Jesus Christ. Pastor Kent powerfully stated, “Jesus Christ, the church, and the family have been the strength, the power, and the success of America. That’s why Jesus Christ, the church, and the family are under attack.” As Christians in this hour, it is time to stand boldly for Biblical principles and not bow to the tactics of the enemy. There is an answer to the world’s questions, and it is Jesus!
1 Corinthians 3:11 (NLT) says, “For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have—Jesus Christ.” When Jesus laid on a wooden cross, and they picked the cross up and dropped it down into the earth, He was laying a sure and costly foundation with His own life. When our foundation is Jesus, “the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it.” With conviction and zeal, Pastor Kent preached, “You can pass every law you want in America, you can put believers in jail, but when the day is done, the very power of the Word is that we triumph, we prevail! Why? Because the foundation of God standeth sure”.
You and I must make up in our minds that there is no price too high to pay for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Remember that nobody loves you like Jesus. Nobody stands by you like Jesus saying, “hold on!”. Pastor Kent invites us all to renew our passion for Jesus and said, “Til the very last breath in your body you stand on the foundation of the Lord Jesus Christ and declare, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
Please join us next week in person or online as we continue to hear life-changing messages from the Word of God. Also, feel free to like and share our new message recap blog to stay fully engaged in what God is saying to Regeneration Nashville. God is moving! Be Regenerated!
Your friend in Christ,