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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Dream

As promised yesterday, the following is a dream I had the night of October 29Th. It is essentially a transcript of what will be going in the next newsletter.

I had a dream last night, and if not for the specific instruction to share what I saw, I would have preferred to keep it to myself. I had gone to bed late, having waited for my wife to get home from work. After seeing that she had arrived home safely, and saying my prayers, I fell into a restful sleep.
I dreamt that I was sleeping, when a hand touched my shoulder, and a voice I recognized said, 'wake up.'
In my dream I opened my eyes, and my breath caught in my throat as I saw who had awakened me. It was the same messenger, the angel I had seen on previous occasions, dressed in full battle armor, standing by the side of my bed.
'Take my hand' he said, 'I have been sent to show you something.'
I barely touched the hand that was extended toward me when my bed and my bedroom evaporated, and I found myself standing before a white, oblong building, that looked allot like a barn or a horse stable. Two large doors made up the front of the structure, and as I looked they began to swing open.
I knew wherever I was, it was not of this earth, because everything shone, everything was white, pristine, immaculate.
I also knew that whatever the reason for being shown this, was about to be revealed, so I stood in silence, holding the messenger's hand.
As soon as the doors were fully open, I saw an angel that looked very much like the one standing beside me, except without the armor, leading a white horse by its reins. The horse was large and muscular, but he followed the angel obediently with its head bent low. The angel's countenance was somber as he led the horse away, and for some reason this registered with great clarity.
I looked up to the messenger whose hand I was still holding, but he merely nodded toward the white building and the open doors, and said, 'witness.'
Another angel soon appeared in the doorway, holding the reins of a red horse, following after the first. I began to realize what I was seeing, and in silence watched as two more angels appeared, each holding the reins of a horse, one black, one of no discernible color, just pale. All four angels were dressed alike, and had the same somber, sorrowful countenance.
I stood and watched as all four horses were led out of my sight, and finally when they had disappeared from view, the messenger turned to me and said: 'Go and tell what you have seen. The riders prepare, the horses are ready, and soon they will descend, soon they will be loosed. Remember what you have witnessed, and do not hold back a single word. Soon they descend on wings of fury; soon turmoil will shake earth's very foundation.
Prepare yourself, for many will fall and few will stand. Fulfillment is at hand, go and speak what you have seen, and what you have heard. The Kingdom awaits the righteous, the holy will soon see the Lord.'
I only realized I was still holding his hand when he let go of mine, and suddenly I was back in my bed, sitting up, fully awake. I am still unsure whether or not it was a dream, or if 'dream' is the right word for it, but for simplicity's sake I will call it a dream.
I tried to go back to sleep but could not, vividly remembering the sorrowful look on the faces of the angels who were leading the horses out of the stables.
It seems the world is seeing, what the church is refusing to acknowledge, the fact that we are on the cusp of great upheaval not only in this nation, but also throughout the world.
These are the days of which the prophets spoke, the days of which Christ warned, the time of distress, of sifting and of separation.
My prayer is that we remember always, our hope is in the Lord, and He is faithful to those who are faithful to Him. If one word stands out from this entire dream, it is the word 'prepare' and we mus do so with diligence. The children of God must steel themselves for what is coming, prepare their hears and settle within their soul that the day in which we will have to stand for truth is soon approaching.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Random Thoughts and Passing Observations

This will not be a long post, at least it is not intended as such. After spending most of the night somewhere between a dream and a waking vision with vividly apocalyptic nuances, around 5:30 AM I found myself in a twenty four hour pharmacy looking for Midol. (Yes the dream will be in next month's newsletter, and yes I will post it on this web log sometime tomorrow.) As I passed through the aisles there was a big cardboard cutout of yet another smiling face, encouraging me to enjoy every day life, and I had to laugh. Yes, I laughed out loud, because let's face it every day life for those of us who don't have chauffeurs and gardeners, servants and cooks, private jets waiting on landing strips, and personal secretaries, looks more like a triage center on a battlefield, than a walk through the rose garden with acquaintances named Biff, and Bunny, Chester and Kitty.
Every day life consists of trying to make time for the important things, the worthwhile things, while cutting out those things which are dead and dying, those things that have no value to our spiritual growth or our ongoing relationships with wives, husbands, brothers, fathers and children.
Every day life consists of the wife waking you at five in the morning telling you she has cramps, of driving your brother to an airport three hours away, and in between the duties of the daily grind, find those few rare, uninterrupted moments of bliss where you can be alone with God, where you call Him Father, and He calls you son or daughter. This life, is anything but a walk in a rose garden.
After a hearty laugh I continued my trek through the pharmacy, seeing more cardboard cutouts of Christian superstars, all vying for my attention, all promising happiness, ease, bliss, money, and fulfillment.
I started thinking about what the average Christian, the babe in Christ must be going through, seeing all these smiling faces, and empty promises, and I likened it to a child whose parents have had a falling out, but still get together once in awhile only to disagree with each other.
In my mind I flashed to an image of a five or six year old, one parent on each side, walking through a park, when they happen upon a puppy. The child smiles, pointing out the puppy, and the father says 'yes, that is a beautiful brown puppy', while the mother says, 'actually son, it's mocha colored.'
They both agree on the puppy being there, but disagree on every other detail. The child, being unable to draw conclusions for itself, first listens to his father and says, 'yes daddy', then after the mother is done with her observation, turns to her and says, 'yes mommy.'
Many of today's hirelings are not vying for something as innocent as your affections, or attention. Many are like professional Gypsies, giving you a big warm hug while they try to lift your wallet, the resounding chorus, the one thing they can all agree on, is that you've got to give them your money, and some out of innocence or ignorance, simply say 'okay.'
Due to the disturbing lack of spiritual maturity, many Christians today are like small children who will agree with anyone and everyone, concerning anything, and everything. Since they have not as yet, ventured out to feed themselves, study for themselves, and draw conclusions based on what they learned, they will simply believe what they hear, only to later discover that another well respected scholar has the opposite opinion, and the cycle begins anew.
If there is a point to my ramblings this morning, it is this: There will always be many voices, faces teachings and doctrines vying for your attention, affections, and financial support, but there is only one Truth! My prayer this morning is that the children of God grow in Him, that they learn to feed themselves, and only let the good Shepherd lead them to green pastures.
More could be said, but I have to get my brother to the airport so he doesn't miss his flight.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Lessons From Exodus

The memory of what Joseph had done, had faded from the minds and hearts of the Egyptians. Long forgotten was the fact that through his gifting, the nation had been spared starvation, that he had once been sanctioned by Pharaoh himself to be in charge of not only his house, but his people as well.
No one did scrap booking back then, no one clipped newspaper articles, no photo albums or digital cameras were available, and the human heart as well as the collective consciousness of an entire nation is so quick to forget the good, the blessing, and the wisdom bestowed upon them.
Yes, the deeds of Joseph were long forgotten, and the people of Israel were made to serve with harshness. The crack of whips upon sun scorched backs echoed throughout the land, more and more pronounced as one journeyed toward the valley of the kings. Israel labored, and wept, and bled, making bricks and mortar to satisfy the whims of a soulless king.
Little did the people know that God was preparing a man, a man who would lead the out of Egypt, out of captivity, and guide them to the promised land.
After plagues of blood and frogs, of flies and boils, of locusts and darkness and death, the day finally arrived, and after receiving retroactive pay for their years of servitude in the form of gold, silver and articles of clothing from the Egyptians, they were well on their way.
The journey began, with God leading them and the people followed in orderly ranks, making their way through the wilderness of the red sea. A pillar of cloud led them by day, a pillar of fire by night, the presence of God always before His people.
Though they had seen His presence throughout, rebellion ensued as they saw the armies of Egypt closing in. Their backs to the sea, all eyes on the ever closer dust cloud caused by chariots and men bent on destroying them, the people lost faith, and began to murmur.
In spite of their rebellion, God still proved He was God, by parting the red sea, and over half a million people, actually closer to six hundred thousand, crossed as if on dry land.
Their praise soon turned to murmuring once more, an the children of Israel said to Moses, 'Oh that we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat and when we ate bread to the full! For you have brought us out into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger."
Lesson 1. Once the pain ebbs, though some scars may still remain, we soon forget the horrors of Egypt, and remember only those fleeting moments of earthly contentment, like a full stomach, once in a great while.
Lesson 2. Nothing you bring out of Egypt will aid you in surviving your journey through the desert of this life.
Lesson 3. When difficulties appear throughout your journey, rather than reminisce about Egypt, remember the miracles God performed to bring you out of Egypt in the first place.
Yes, Israel had plundered the Egyptians, as per Moses's counsel, but now they were in the desert, and you can't eat gold, and you can't drink hundred dollar bills.
It only takes something as insignificant as a water shortage in this nation, to realize that if we've placed our trust in ourselves, in our security bonds, and retirement accounts, our trust is sorely misplaced.
Only God can give food in the desert, even if it has to rain down from the sky, and only He can give you water from the rock when the rivers have run dry, the aquifers have turned to dust, and no matter how much silver or gold you may have stashed away, there isn't a drop of water to be had.
The story of Israel's exodus is a fascinating one, and many parallels can be drawn, and lessons learned by studying it. Whether God's providence or man's murmuring, God's faithfulness or man's absence of faith, we can learn, and grow, and believe, so that our journey would not take forty years, but that we would reach the promised land in due season, with God continually leading us, and His miraculous works continually encouraging us to press onward.
The treasures we can find, if only we would seek with diligence, the wisdom we might attain if we allow the Word to be our light, is truly limitless.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Playing The Blame Game

Well you've finally gone and done it, you took the plunge, you walked into your local bookstore intent on becoming a better you, and having your best life now. When you see the 30% off sticker on the book jacket you think to yourself, 'surely this must be a sign from the heavens', only to discover that the discount was limited to book club members, and the membership costs forty dollars.
That's okay you figure you're willing to pay top dollar for a shot at becoming a better you, and living your best life now, pulling three crisp twenty dollar bills from your wallet, and getting eight dollars and change back. You've just made an investment in your future, you reason, a small price to pay for all the return on the initial investment you've been promised. You barely hear the monotonous 'have a nice day' from the sales clerk as you rush out into the bright midday sun, anxious to get home and devour the material. "Oh what glorious days await", you think to yourself, "in fact today might just be the low point of my existence on earth. Only sunny days from here on out, big smiles, a full wallet, and happy times."
So you get home, start reading, overlooking the cliches and the oddly familiar undertone of a bygone self help guru, and as soon as you're done, you start working the steps.
You work the program like an alcoholic works the twelve steps in between sips of his flask, you stay positive, you smile at yourself in the mirror, you smile at others until your facial muscles start to spasm, you're even nice to the waiter who sneezes in your eggs Florentine.
Yep, you're a better you already, and your best life is just around the corner!
A week passes, then a month, the initial enthusiasm wears off, and now you're waiting for that breakthrough, that blessing, that old prosperity gravy train, that should pull into your station any day now. Why you even bought a hard hat just in case a big bag of money falls out of the sky.
So much for that eating bread in the sweat of your face and toil and stuff, the next lotto drawing is only days away. Fingers crossed, positive thoughts, two days from now you just might wake up a millionaire.
More weeks roll by, life continues its course, for the past three straight drawings in a row you've only hit one out of six numbers, and you start getting discouraged, disheartened, deflated, then angry, and start blaming God.
It's not the guy who just sold you three hundred pages worth of illusions and unbliblical teachings, not yourself for not remembering the old adage 'if it's too good to be true, it probably is', you blame God for not following through on His end, after you completed the seven steps.
If you don't begin a journey with God, then check with Him halfway to see if you're on the right path, why do you blame God when your destination isn't what you imagined it to be?
God only authored one Book, yes that Book, that's been gathering dust on the bookshelf in the basement for the past three years while you've been chasing after snake oil salesmen who promise to tell you how to get rich and have everything you ever wanted, how to obtain prosperity thinking, how to see the beautiful you, and how to obtain the wisdom keys to prosperity.
So don't blame God that once again you fell for the empty promises of the wolfish grin on the cover of a book, because it wasn't His wolfish grin!
If we are going to play the blame game, and be honest in our assessment of who's to blame the answer will always be, us! Me, you, we are to blame, yes completely and crushingly the blame lies with us, because it is we who have chosen to circumvent the truth and the life, it is we who have chosen to bypass the Bible, because as one such preacher so famously put it, 'heaven can wait, I'm havin' a good time here.'
Their job is to sell you a product, package it just so to get your attention, and promise you the wealth of kings so you shell out the twenty five odd bucks in order to find the secret to this much lauded wealth and happiness. You can still walk away from the book store empty handed, you can still turn off the television, you can still open your Bible and see what it has to say concerning these things. I know it's a painful subject, but sooner or later we must face the fact that there needs to be personal accountability on our part for the things we believe, and the men we follow!
So if you really want to have your best life now, it doesn't take seven steps, or six, or even three, nor do you have to spend twenty five dollars in order to discover the secret. It takes one step, but it will be the most important step of your life. Surrender your heart, your body, your soul, your all to Jesus Christ the Son of the living God, and let Him take you by the hand, guide you, cleanse you, lead you to green pastures, and make you a better you.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

The Current Controversy

As I sit here staring at the blank screen before me, scratching at five day's worth of beard stubble, which incidentally I noticed this morning is going grey, I wonder how I get myself in these kinds of situations. It isn't that I fear offending anyone with the words I am about to write, the inevitability of offense is something I came to terms with a long time ago. What I fear is that some of you will offended for the wrong reasons, or because I was not adequately able to get my point across with my limited vocabulary.
I think to myself there are easier things I could be doing right now, perhaps go down to the local grocery store, buy an industrial size bottle of Grecian formula, and have at my grey hairs, but vanity was never something I saw any value in, plus the stuff costs an arm an a leg.
Well, I guess it's rip off the band aid time, one quick tug, one brilliant flash of searing pain, then on to less painful endeavors like borrowing my wife's tweezers and yanking the grey hairs out individually, one by one, until I pass out.
In recent days a great controversy has been brewing within Christendom, one which has as yet, unfortunately, not reached its zenith. It will continue to grow, and draw the attention of the saved and unsaved alike, everyone likes a good controversy, each throwing in their respective two cents never really bothering to go to the Scripture for answers.
It has to do with a recently published book, by a well known American evangelist, which asserts that 'Jesus did not come to earth to be the Messiah and that Jesus refused by word and deed to claim to be the Messiah'. He further asserts in his writings that 'the Jews cannot be blamed for not accepting what was never offered'.
I will not mention the man, or the title of his book in this post, but if you seek you will find it, since cyberspace is all abuzz about it.
Let me begin by saying I consider Israel to be God's chosen people. I also believe that due to our defense of Israel, God has spared this nation for longer than its many transgressions should have allowed. However, we cannot deny their culpability in rejecting the Christ, just as we cannot deny that the Pharisees and Sadducees of that time had a hand in His crucifixion. I will be the first to say that I am all for being in defense of Israel, as long as we heed the Word, and not gloss over what is written therein, in an attempt to expunge the notion of accountability on behalf of those long returned to the earth.
There are many avenues we can pursue here, but I would like to answer the question at the heart of this particular controversy: "Did the Pharisees know they were rejecting the Messiah?"
Since I have a bad back, I often refrain from throwing around big words, but this is a delicate and important matter, so I will make an exception in this case.
The answer to the all important question, can be found in Matthew the twenty second chapter, a chapter that has been dubbed by many 'the chapter of controversies'.
Here they were, the most brilliant religious minds of the time, Pharisees and Sadducees, teachers of the law, and priests of the highest order, trying desperately to silence and destroy the ministry of one called Jesus of Nazareth. All had come together under a singular banner, that of discrediting Jesus, and proving that He in fact was not that which He claimed to be.
Jesus never had a polemical, contentious, or argumentative spirit about Him, yet here He was rising to the challenge, embroiling himself in the controversy, and provoking the Pharisees and Sadducees to answer Him one question.
Before I quote the Scripture passage, I would like to make a point. Jesus always spoke to His audience on their level. To fishermen He spoke of fishing, to farmers He spoke of farming, so to those that were now gathered before him, the religious, the educated, the Pharisee, and the Sadducee, He spoke of the Old Testament, the law, referencing topics, and in terms they should have understood.
Matthew 22:41-45, "While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying, 'What do you think about the Christ? Whose Son is He?' They said to Him, 'the Son of David.' He said to them, 'How then does David in the Spirit call Him 'Lord', saying: 'The Lord said to My Lord, sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool'? If David then calls Him 'Lord,' how is He his Son?"
All those present, witnessing this exchange, including the apostles believed that Jesus was asking this question in the hopes of silencing His adversaries, and causing them to shrink away from Him.
The reason Jesus asked the question, was not to silence the theologians of Jerusalem, but rather it was His final attempt to open their eyes to who He was, that they would believe, His final attempt at their salvation.
Those opposed to Christ did not have a clear answer, as Jesus knew they wouldn't. If however they would have at least tried to give an answer that was not mechanical and cold, but would have asked for time to study, to search, to compare His life to the prophecies of old, they would have reasoned very differently.
Christ spoke to these men on their level, in a riddle that He knew they could understand, if they so desired. Jesus knew that if He simply would have said, "I am the Messiah, the one the prophets of old foresaw", the hearts of the Pharisees, and Sadduccees would have been all the more hardened. He gave them enough information, to reach the conclusion themselves, to see the truth for what it was, if only their heart had been to know the truth.
If anyone should have known, it was the Pharisees that the Anointed One, the Messiah was to be a descendant of the Davidic lineage. It had been prophesied. Even though there were different interpretations concerning the place, and the role of the Messiah, no one doubted that He would be of the family of David, David's son.
At this point we can go deeper, and see the mystery and beauty that is Christ telling David to sit at his right hand, denoting the fact that indeed He was, and is, and forever shall be co-regent with God, sitting on the throne, but the post is already a lengthy one, and if I added all the notes I've made in the last two days, it would end up being a small booklet, so we will just focus on Christ's final words to those listening.
Then Jesus asked His final question, one that would either open the eyes of those listening to who He was, or end the debate. "If David then calls Him 'Lord', how is He his Son?"
If we looked upon these words in the context of the times, we would realize that it was largely a patriarchal society. It was inconceivable for a son to ask his father to call him 'Lord'. On the contrary it was the children who often used punctilious terms with their parents. Respect for ancestry was deeply rooted in all the peoples of antiquity, and the Jewish people, although they never had a cult of the dead like other nations, had a veneration, and respect for those who came before them. They often spoke of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David, in words heavy with religious sentiment. I would even go so far as saying that there was a greater respect in how they spoke of their ancestors, than there was in the way in which they spoke about angels. It was then inconceivable for someone to say they were the 'Lord of David, Abraham and Jacob', and yet David calls the Messiah 'my Lord'.
Why would Jesus speak these words if he had not intended for the Jewish people to know that He was Messiah? Truthfully, he wouldn't have. He was about to leave this earth, and His people, the Jewish people had as yet not understood His purpose or ministry, nor had they recognized Him for who He was. It was a final attempt, and Jesus was inviting those wholly capable of unraveling the mystery, to follow it to its rightful conclusion and acknowledge Him as Messiah!
Did Jesus give them enough information to reach the right conclusion? Yes. Did those listening to Jesus have the aptitude and education to follow the thread, and see where it inevitably led? Yes. Did they choose instead to ignore the truth that stood before them, plug up their ears and harden their hearts? Yes.
John 1:10-13, "He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God."
Isaiah 53:2-7, "For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root out of dry ground. He has no form or comeliness; and when we see Hm, there is no beauty that we should desire Him. He is despised and rejected by men, a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. Surely He has borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so He opened not his mouth."
Thank God for Jesus! Thank Jesus for the cross!

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

The Stench Of Corruption

If you're enjoying a delicious sandwich while surfing the net, and have come upon this particular post, I suggest you either put down the sandwich, or revisit this article after you've finished your meal and it is well on its way down your digestive tract. Fair warning, I don't want anyone thinking to themselves, with a mouthful of half masticated sandwich, 'ewe that's gross.'
In the late nineties while living in Romania full time, I befriended a young man who became my workout partner at the local gym. He was preparing for a bodybuilding competition, and he seemed like the right guy to persuade me in pushing beyond my pain threshold. Yes, I know this is workout jargon some might not be familiar with, but please bear with me. The gym itself was nothing sophisticated, no blinking lights, no treadmills, no air conditioning, just a basement, with a few barbells and dumbbells, a guy's gym in every sense of the word.
In order to achieve his desired result, this young man had to consume copious amounts of food. Needless to say, whenever he wasn't raining, he was eating. His mother would cook him potatoes, strips of meat, and whatever else she could afford in order to get him to competition weight. One day he visited my home, and unbeknown to me, forgot a bag which held a few pieces of strip steak somewhere in my home.
A few days later I started to notice an odd smell in my home, but couldn't quite put my finger on where it was coming from. As the days went by, the smell got stronger and stronger, until I finally decided to look for the source of said smell, and not give up until I found it.
After looking though most of he house I finally discovered the plastic bag, unfortunately it wasn't a Ziploc bag wedged between my sofa and my radiator, with the pieces of meat in an advanced state of decomposition. I will spare you the ugly details, but it wasn't pretty. He had placed the bag on the windowsill and it had fallen, being obscured from view.
In case you were wondering if the preceding story was just to gross you out, it wasn't. There is a spiritual application, and one that is very relevant o the condition of today's church.
The stench of corruption is ever growing, becoming more obvious, and more pungent with the passage of time. If it stinks a little now, it will stink allot worse a few days from now, because corruption doesn't have an off switch, and as the decay continues to spread, it will become more pronounced.
Though today some simply wrinkle their noses at the aberrant teachings and doctrines floating around, the time will soon come when the smell will be overpowering.
The stench of corruption can only be masked for so long with entertainment, christian humor, blinking lights, big screen televisions and Dolby surround sound.
Eventually one must either find the source of the stench and remove it personally, or abandon his or her own home and leave it to the corruption.
With the passage of time, more and more people are beginning to see the grievous lengths to which some churches will go in order to fill the seats, and the stench that comes with willful compromise, with the salt having lost its flavor, and thereby it's power to preserve from corruption is becoming undeniable. Try as they might to be polite, to ignore the smell, to turn their heads, to attempt breathing through a handkerchief, some just can't stand it anymore.
In our attempt to remove Christ from the congregation and replace Him with self serving, self centered, and outright selfish messages, we've lost sight of the fact that a church absent of Christ is a church in name only. It is only through Him, and in Him, that we are kept from the corruption of this age, and from the decay of sin. Without Christ we rot away like the rest of the world the smell of our corruption growing worse every day, just in a cathedral like setting and plush seating.
Since God has a sensitive nose, the stench of corruption reached his nostrils long before the sheep were aware of it and judgment upon His house has already been pronounced, and is well on its way to being carried out. Yes, God is about to clean house, and lest anyone forget, judgment begins in His house first.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Post Script: Since I have the day off tomorrow, something that is very rare in and of itself, after much prayerful consideration, I've decided to tackle the current controversy that most of the Christian websites have been abuzz about, namely whether Jesus came to earth to be the Messiah, and whether or not Jesus refused by word and deed to claim to be said Messiah.
As always, the answers are found in the Bible, and in the end, if we hope to be guided in truth, wisdom, knowledge and understanding, the Bible must be our final authority. Until tomorrow, be blessed of the Lord.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Dangers Of The Pan Theory

Warning: The following post may dispel some previously held views and beliefs. It may in fact awaken some from the endless slumber wrought upon the house of God by the theory of escapism. If you are fond of ignorance, or are otherwise averse to facing reality, please read no further!
We live in an age where there is no shortage of theories, or for that matter theorists. Everyone nowadays seems to be an authority on one form of end time teaching or another. Some seem harmless enough, so grand in their absurdity that one just shakes it off laughing, while others are more subtle in their purpose disguising themselves in Scripture, attempting to justify the unjustifiable.
In recent years there has been great controversy among the theorists concerning one subject in particular, that of the timeline of Christ's imminent return, wherein we will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. This is a real event, it is Biblical, and although the word 'rapture' is never once mentioned in the Word, there will one day be a 'catching up, or catching away' wherein we will meet the Lord in the air. This post however, is not about splitting hairs, so whether you call it 'rapture', or 'catching up', let us agree that it is a real and imminent event.
There are those who hold vehemently to the belief that this event will take place pre-tribulation, others affirm that it will be sometime mid-tribulation, others post-tribulation, then there are those too cowardly to take a stand for fear of offending the sensibilities of others, calling themselves pan-theorists.
Now I know many of you are skipping down this post, wanting to see where I stand on the issue, but as is alluded to by the title this is not the reason for this article. Suffice it to say, I believe that allot of Christians have already packed their bags, sleeping with one eye open, not wanting to miss something that is quite a ways off, from a scriptural standpoint at least. My advice, unpack, put your clothes back in your closets, because we'll be here for awhile.
In order to prove in a Biblical manner, the 'when' of our departure from this earth, a long and scripture heavy article is required, and if I ever feel compelled to write it, it will most likely be on the hand of help website. Keep in mind however, that the Bible was written for the children of God, and to those of the world, and still in the world it is foolishness. If this is the case, then every word in the Book pertains to believers, and the book does speak of tribulation, of great upheaval, and many other issues which many Christians believe they will not be here for.
With that having been said, we return our focus back to the pan theorists. In layman's terms a pan theorist is one who believes that it will all pan out in the end. It doesn't really matter, the 'when' of it is none of our concern. 'It will happen when it happens', they whisper suppressing a yawn.
As noble as the pan theory might seem on the surface, there are hidden dangers that the wise must address lest he become a fool.
On this issue, I fear that neither ignorance or indifference is the best course of action. If the enemy can't get God's children to fall into the temptations and snares he puts out, his next best hope is that he find said children unprepared for battle when they are confronted with it. The enemy's hope, is that the children never mature into soldiers, but remain in a permanent state of spiritual infancy, wherein they are dependent on others for their nourishment, their wardrobe, and their very lives.
The pan theory encourages indifference, it promotes slumber, and does not compel the church to grow from grace to grace, from glory to glory, and from strength to strength. It allows for a static existence, wherein it was enough that one just raised their hand in a service. From that point forward, smooth sailing, blue skies, and the eventual blessing from on high.
A soldier is only deemed a soldier after he has successfully completed basic training, after he has been entrusted with the weapons of his warfare, and taught to use the weapons in his arsenal. Just because someone buys army fatigues at a surplus store, it does not make them a soldier, just as showing up in church twice a year does not make one a warrior for Christ.
Living without the expectation of confrontation, not being aware that some day, perhaps some day soon you will have to do battle against the darkness, gives many a false sense of security, and as the heart is want to do, allows them to justify their absence of maturity and growth in Christ.
I've said this in my sermons, but it is worth repeating here, God is not looking to run a day care center, He is looking to lead an army.
Lack of spiritual preparation, and spiritual maturity will be the downfall of many nominal Christians once the dark days, the evil days are upon us, and some will even turn their backs on God, shaking their fists at the heavens because in their hearts they did not believe they would see those days with their own eyes.
One cannot justify indifference by calling it trust, just as one cannot justify spiritual atrophy by saying they never saw the need for maturity, since they believed they would never have to stand, to fight, and to overcome.
I could go on, much can be said, in fact volumes can be written as to why we need to be aware of the times we are living in, why we need to prepare spiritually, why we need to put on our armor, and purpose in our hearts that we will not defile ourselves, that we will stand, and fight, but attention spans being what they are nowadays, I will leave you with a few notable and timely scriptures.
2 Timothy 3:12, "Yes and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution."
Ephesians 6:10-14, "Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all to stand."

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Seven Truths

I realize most hearts are all aflutter at the thought of God being their new found automated teller machine, an endless source of crisp hundred dollar bills, requiring only an upward glance and an enthusiastic 'money come to me now.'
Dreams of Italian cars with leather interiors, German really isn't up to snuff anymore, indoor and outdoor pools, and homes one can get lost in, are the stuff of many Christian's daydreams, holding tight to the promises of prosperity, sowing those faith seeds, and waiting.
I realize also that the hirelings are all too happy to continue preaching Christ less sermons, and a great majority of the sheep having itching ears love to have it so. Even when a shepherd's conscience gets the better of him, rare but it happens, he is quickly reminded of who signs his paychecks, and that the committee is meeting next month to vote on whether or not to extend his contract one more year, so he'd better scrap the sermon series on repentance, and stop talking about uncomfortable topics that make the newcomers squirm in their seats.
There is however a counterbalance to these teachings, a certain Book that is as a thorn in the side of many who hold it up to the cameras every Sunday, and within its pages we find certain truths, that try as one might cannot be expunged.
I'm sure some of you can think of more, but in a manner of minutes I found seven truths that are as relevant and important today, as the day they were penned by men inspired by the Holy Spirit. Truth has no expiration date, and even though the very bones of those who penned these words have long turned to dust, the truth remains, able to transform anyone who is willing to receive it.

1. Without shedding of blood there is no remission of sin.
Hebrews 9:22, "And according to the law almost all things are purged with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission."
Hebrews 9:27-28, "And as it is appointed for all men to die once, but after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation."

2. Without faith, it is impossible to please God.
Hebrews 11:6, "But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him."

3. Without holiness, there can be no communion with God. Without holiness no one will see the Lord.
Hebrews 12:14, "Pursue peace with all men, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord."

4. Without chastening no one can be a son of God.
Hebrews 12:8, "But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons."

5. There is no faith without works.
James 2:26, "For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also."

6. Without love, there is no reward.
1 Corinthians 13:1-3, "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become as sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing."

7. Without Christ we are barren and can bear no fruit.
John 15:4-5, "Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without me you can do nothing."

Any one of these scriptures, and these truths can be fleshed out, can be made into a sermon, or a sermon series, but since I have never enjoyed being superfluous, I will end this post with the following thought.
Truth is neither subjective or relative, it simply is. No matter how much men attempt to alter it, to twist it that it may fit their agendas, it always reverts back to its original form, being a witness and a testimony against those who attempted to pervert it on the day of judgment.
I would rather preach the truth to an audience of one, than preach a lie to an audience of ten thousand.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Needing A Time Out

As most of you know, I was born in Romania. I could tell you that it is a beautiful, lush, mountainous country, which it is, but while living there as a child it was also a country that encouraged child discipline. Until the age of nine, before our entire family was uprooted and deported, I'd gotten my fair share of spankings, the worst of which was for almost poking my little brother's eye out with a 'wooden sword'. It was actually a stick that I was waving around at pretend adversaries, and he walked right into it, but no one listened to my explanation back then, so why should I expect anyone to listen now?
My mother was the family disciplinarian, unofficially elected by the rest of the adults, with my grandmother acting as her second in command whenever the situation called for it.
Two days after arriving in America, still shell shocked from all the change, I discovered parents couldn't spank you anymore. I found this out by way of another Romanian child, who had been here longer, that lived in the same ghetto we ended up living in. It was up until that time the best news I'd heard in my young life, and smiling I walked into our apartment, sidestepping the suitcases we used as ad hock mattresses, and said to my mother, 'you can't spank me anymore, this is America. The neighbor said I can call the police, and you'll be in big trouble.'
Never mind the fact that I did not speak a word of English, or that we didn't have a telephone, I simply repeated the foolish words, of a foolish neighbor without thought for consequence.
I soon discovered that in fact my mother could spank me, even in America, as she asked to borrow my dad's belt and proceeded to do just that. After a few well placed swats to my bottom, she bent over to look me in the eye, and said, 'go call the police now.'
Of course I didn't, nor did I ever again bring up the topic of her not being able to spank me in America.
No this article is not about child discipline, and how the lack thereof has made it impossible for parents to bring a semblance of order in their homes. It is in fact about our reaction to Iran after their persistent and continual defiance.
I liken the current situation, not to a child, but to a full grown adult who is threatening to come into your home, give you a black eye, set the neighborhood on fire, and the best we can do as a comeback, is 'you need a time out.'
A time out is exactly what new sanctions amount to, as pertains to Iran, sending a child to his room, where he wants to be in the first place, since it's full of video games, DVDS and a plasma screen television.
When will this nation realize that Iran is not afraid of sanctions? They already have the leading nations of the world courting them, hoping to find a spot at the petrol bar. When will we realize that they're just pulling for time, to bring their plans to fruition, like a basketball team who's two points ahead and decides to run out the clock so their victory is secured? One cannot reason with the unreasonable, or attempt to employ logic with the illogical.
If not for the scriptures which tell us that God will blind the eyes of the kings of the world, one would wonder if madness had overtaken them. Every decision, every action, or lack thereof, seems to bring us one step closer to the inevitable conclusion that was foreseen so long ago.
If we've learned one thing from this age of political correctness, it's that time outs don't work. Children don't fear being sent to their rooms, they fear their bottoms feeling as though they have been set on fire.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

A Vivid Reminder

I have been busy of late, so for the first time in some time, I clicked on some of the major news sites this evening, and was stunned to see California burning. Allot could be said, but this is not the time. If anything, what is happening in California at this hour, should serve as a vivid reminder to all of us how quickly the things we tend to trust in can become nothing more than ash, scattered by the wind.
If our hearts are tethered to things, if our hope is rooted in this earth, when the things are gone, and the earth is aflame, all that will remain is emptiness, an emptiness that will suffocate us like so much smoke, and bring us to our knees crying out in desperation.
Oh, that our hope would be rooted in eternity, and our hearts tethered to Christ! Oh, that we would stand on the sure foundation of His promises, nothing will shake us, and come what may we will rest in the knowledge that by His strength we will overcome.
Remember the people of California in your prayers tonight, during your time of devotion, as you hope they would remember you if it were your home that was destroyed, and your possessions turned to soot.
Now is not the time to cry out 'we told you so', for what is happening now is merely a preview of what is to come, for the repentance that was perpetually offered was continually rejected, and the grace that was freely given was so shamefully abused.
Now is the time to pray, to feel, to hurt, to weep with those who weep, to empathise, and to be thankful to our heavenly Father that He has seen fit to spare us these tragedies, that we have seen the depth of His mercies, and have felt the touch of His love.
The years of plenty are well behind us dear friends, the years of feasting and reveling, of pushing the boundaries of excess and opulence, of living only for ourselves, only for the flesh, only for the now. Dark days are on the horizon, when reality will shatter the imaginary world, and the imaginary gods so many have fashioned for themselves, and we will know His righteous judgment, and see with our own eyes that He is a consuming fire.
Tonight I weep with those who weep, tomorrow we resume the battle for truth and righteousness, for godliness and sanctification, but tonight, if only tonight, I weep.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Doctrinal Buffets

My grandfather was a fisherman, so naturally he loved fish. While we were still living in Romania, at least four meals per week included fish, and whether it was pike, catfish, carp or sardines, grandpa always made it taste good.
It was only upon our arrival to America however, that my grandfather discovered shrimp. To say that he loved shrimp, would be an understatement. He found a restaurant that had a shrimp buffet twice a week, and whenever we were not on the road, it was inevitable that he would take us boys, myself and my two little brothers, and treat us to the shrimp buffet. It wasn't by any stretch of the imagination a high end place, the shrimp wasn't even de-veined, but what could one expect from a buffet dinner that cost under seven dollars? We didn't know any different anyhow, and we got to spend some time with grandpa, which was always a highlight.
A few years later, after I had learned a little something about this new place we now called home, after buying my first car at auction, fixing it up, and selling it for a nice profit, I decided to treat my grandfather to a real shrimp dinner, at a real restaurant.
Needless to say, he enjoyed the experience immensely, amazed at the fact that the shrimp came to the table already de-veined. He noticed that it tasted fresher, better and more appetizing, even though it wasn't all you can eat.
If the old adage, 'you get what you pay for', is true of the restaurant business, it is also true of most of the doctrines floating around the grand doctrinal buffet, sitting under the heat lamps, having been sneezed upon, prodded, reheated and passed over, until some unwitting soul thinks, 'hey, that looks good enough to eat.'
Too often, men find only after they've consumed large quantities from the doctrinal buffet, that it only satiates their hunger for a short while, an from time to time they get stomach aches, and break out into cold sweats just as an added bonus.
Now don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking buffets, in fact, especially when I'm traveling I tend to hit the trucks top buffets quite often, in large part due to the speed with which I can eat something, then be on my way. I do not walk in expecting to savor a gourmet meal, nor am I expecting something extraordinarily tasty, in fact I'm quite content simply if I don't get sick after. So why do I still go to the buffets? It's all about getting in and out as fast as possible.
Today men seem to view doctrine in much the same fashion I view buffets in general, as something to fill their soul as quickly as possible, so they can get back to the business of life. Because they pay so little attention to what they are allowing into their hearts, its only when the lack of substance is made evident, either by trials, hardships or lack of relationship with Christ, that they realize they may have consumed something that wasn't good for them, and in fact did them harm.
Empty doctrine will fill you temporarily, but it will not sustain you. No matter how much you ingest, no matter how much you consume, there will always be that perpetual emptiness that can only be filled by the truth of God's holy word.
What we must remember, is that every morsel of doctrine we ingest, must be filtered through our system, and no matter how good your system is working, or how healthy it may be, the doctrine always leaves something of itself behind. Soon, we discover that we have grown spiritually heavy, we are burdened and weighed down, and don't know how this happened.
Eat enough junk, and you will inevitably do damage to yourself, and given enough gluttonous consumption of false doctrine, perhaps irreparable damage.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

A Passing Observation

I was reading through the day's top headlines, headlines which by no stretch of the imagination seem to read like some passages from the book of Revelation, when I happened upon a nugget, that would be funny if it wasn't so sad.
For those of you who don't think I have a sense of humor, prepare to be dazzled. Apparently one of America's most prominent Christian Television Ministries has recently bought out Orlando's Holy Land Park, and as a show of Christian love and charity they proceeded to fire a quarter of the work force.
There is however an upside to all this, you can now take a break from the circus that is televangelism, and go to a theme park instead. While you're there, you can purchase the limited edition, leather bound prosperity Bible, some thirteen hundred pages with 1 Kings 17:10-16, repeated over, and over, and over again.
Just when you start wondering what they'll think of next, they exceed your wildest imagination.
One would surely laugh but for the tears welling up in their eyes.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Through His Eyes

Very few people in this world have the wherewithal to offer an unbiased opinion of themselves, to be brutally honest concerning either their appearance, or their spiritual condition, to the point of tears. On the contrary most often we tend to overestimate every aspect of our lives, at least in our own minds, whether the topic is spirituality, looks, aptitude or intelligence.
Even I find myself sometimes, especially after a long winter, looking in the mirror, sucking in my gut, and thinking to myself, 'it's not that bad, I haven't gained that much weight this winter.'
It takes someone with the aptitude for brutal honesty to bring the truth home, in this case the vehicle for that brutal honesty being my little brother, who looked at me one morning while he was visiting, and through bites of his breakfast cereal said, 'you're getting fat, you should start hitting the gym.'
This is why the better yourself, and self esteem doctrines have such a huge following, because in essence they teach you to look in the mirror, and lie to yourself every time you do so. Believe me, lying to yourself is easy, especially when you don't really want to confront the truth. It's much easier for me to look in the mirror, while sucking in my gut, telling myself that I'm OK, or the old cliche, I'm beautiful on the inside, rather than start jogging again every morning, or cut down on the fun foods I enjoy eating. I know this post seems like I'm talking about my weight issues, but bear with me, it does have a spiritual application.
Unless we begin to see ourselves through God's eyes, we will always be able to justify ourselves, to ourselves, finding an excuse not to draw closer, and get deeper in Him. Whether it's looking at our neighbor, who attends the same church, but who we know is a much bigger sinner than we are, or at disgraced pastors who were found guilty of more vile sins than we've even thought of committing, it is easy for the human heart to justify compromise.
Only when we see what God sees, the God who's expectation is that His bride be without spot or wrinkle, do we begin to realize the depth of our depravity, the necessity of being washed in the blood of His Son, and clothed in His righteousness.
Whenever I hear yet another self betterment, or self empowerment speech, dressed up as a sermon, I go back to the words of Paul, and realize just how full of error these teachings are.
Here was a man who could have boasted, who by all rights should have had confidence in the flesh, who out shined most of his contemporaries due to his upbringing, his heritage, and his education, yet who was humble enough to see himself through God's eyes, and realize the nothingness of all that came before he knew Christ.
Philippians 3:4-11, "If anyone else thinks he may have confidence in the flesh, I more so: circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews; concerning the law, a Pharisee; concerning zeal, persecuting the church; concerning the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. But what things were gain to me these I have counted loss for Christ. But indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ, and be found in Him not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings being conformed to His death, if by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead."
So here was a man, who didn't just look in the mirror and spew out some worthless mantra about how he'll try better tomorrow, or how he tried his best, so the fact that he fell back into sin was OK, but one who was blameless concerning the righteousness which was in the law. Having seen however, the beauty of the righteousness which comes through faith in Christ, the selfsame righteousness that is from God by faith, he counted his own righteousness as nothing more than rubbish. Can most even say as Paul said that they were blameless concerning the righteousness which is in the law? Then how can so many persist in their folly, believing they can achieve only what Christ can freely give?
If only for an instant God would give those who call themselves His children eyes to see, they would perhaps realize that God will accept nothing less than seeing His Son in their hearts, their past washed clean by His blood, born again to a new life in Him, and that without the presence of Christ, no quirky mantra, no self empowerment book, or self esteem tape series will keep them from spending an eternity in hell. The cross, the blood, the Christ, no man can come to the Father, but through these.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Why A Blog?

My brother Daniel is what I refer to as a 'people person'. He can meet someone in passing, just once, then a few months later call them up and say he'll be in town for a night, and was wondering if he can sleep over. I on the other hand, have always been weary of putting undue burden on anyone, and for this reason I would rather sleep in a car than call someone and say, 'make me a snack I'm coming over.'
Some of you have written me, 'privately', wondering if there was any particular reason I started this blog, rather than continue posting on the Hand of Help website. There is one reason, and it has nothing to do with the ministry, in fact I still plan on posting the longer more in depth studies on the Hand of Help website, as well as the longer articles that I feel are too voluminous to post on here.
The one reason I decided to start this blog is primarily due to the fact that I don't want to put any undue burden on others, when I can carry the weight myself. All the articles that are posted on the Hand of Help website, go through a brother by the name of Scott, whom I've met, in whose home I've been and whose family I fellowshiped with. He is a good brother with a good heart, but I realized that he too has a family he must spend time with, and provide for, and if there was a way of lessening his workload, I would pursue that option. Hence this blog.
What I didn't figure into the equation was that these daily posts would be a source of nourishment for many of you, and a means by which you can stay connected with a community of like minded believers. In hindsight I believe God had it planned all along, and it came about at the opportune time.
Yes, for those of you who are wondering, I will continue to post on the Hand of Help website, in fact I am a few days away from completing another chapter in the continual study of the book of Revelation, the second volume on the Church of Thyatira, and an article entitled 'in spite of ourselves', having to do with God fulfilling His plan, sometimes, yes you guessed it, even in spite of ourselves.
For now I leave you with the grace and peace of God our Father, and hope I have answered some of your concerns.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

A Matter Of Choice

If the following post seems unsympathetic, it was not intended to be. If some will come away after reading this post with the question of 'where's the love?' I assure you, it is love that compels me to commit these thoughts to actual words on a screen. Too often men retreat to justifying certain sins in their lives, when confronted with them, by saying the person that pointed them out did so in an unloving fashion, and so they cannot receive the rebuke. I could, at this time throw out the tired cliche of 'love hurts', but in my defense, I have not resorted to calling anyone 'the offspring of a viper!', so I'm still ahead in the loving rebuke category.
For the past few weeks I have been counseling a young man who's had some trouble dealing with sin in his life, and as the Word admonishes us to do, I have pointed him to the Bible, to the words of Christ, and the apostles in the hope that he would resist the temptation laid before him, and pursue righteousness with zeal and commitment. Every couple days, I get a heartbreaking e-mail that, he has relapsed into his old life, and when I press him as to why he would do such a thing, his answer is always, in one variation or another 'the devil made me do it.'
So today I would like to dispel this myth, that the devil really does make us do it, and bring the focus back on yes, you guessed it, us, ourselves, and the individual accountability and responsibility we have before God of resisting temptation, of standing firm and resolute in the face of the enemy's snares.
Evil, or sin, as relates to man, is the result of a wrong choice while under the influence of temptation. Satan's offer, becomes sin for us, only when we choose it, and accept it as an alternative to walking with Christ in purity and righteousness. Temptation was invented by the enemy, and looking at all the victims it has left in its wake, at least from his point of view, temptation was a genius means of distracting the children of God from their primary goal. Once men give in to temptation, they open the door to deception, and the progression leads, if ever so slowly, down into the abyss, further and further away from light and truth.
Sin is always a matter of personal choice,the outcome of giving in to some external temptation, we knew all along we should avoid and resist. Lucifer chose to rebel against God, blinded by his pride and desire to be the greatest in the kingdom.
By continually choosing to give in to the temptations that the devil lays at our feet, given enough time we become his slaves. Man is a being with the freedom to choose, he can decide and perceive the difference between good and evil.
Animals have no conscience, they are not aware that they are committing evil, even when they cause pain or suffering. I saw the perfect example of this, when my father in law's dog, a dog he had had for over ten years, bit him on the hand for trying to take away a bone.
Progressively, man becomes a sure victim of the temptation to which he succumbs repeatedly. Temptation is by its very definition tempting, it beguiles us, and if we allow it to overcome us, it births sin in our hearts. Once sin is committed, once man has given in to temptation, or desire, absent of repentance, and yes I use repentance in its strictest definition (turning away from), he becomes ensnared.
The conscience of every man has been stamped with the knowledge of good and evil, and like a permanent watermark it remains there in spite of the ethical relativism, (the means by which men corrupt the definitions of morality), that is being promoted in the world today.
Evil multiplies quite easily and rapidly in the hearts of those who are open to it, all it needs is the right environment, and the right environment for evil is any soul which it was able to drag away from the light of truth, into the darkness of sin. Evil is the primary virus, which has infested the human race, and as any virus it continually changes its identity, morphing into new strains, to escape detection, but its essence always remains the same. Evil travels the same paths, knocks on the same doors, offers the same temptations, incognito as it were, and men continually allow themselves to be beguiled by its appearance, and choose it over the simplicity of a life in Christ.
Hidden under a variety of masks, evil always promises something that seems to good to be true, never there when the time comes to keep its end of the bargain, but always there to collect its pound of flesh in the form of the painful consequences that follow men's fall into temptation.
All the enemy offers, all he is able to offer, are poisonous, spoiled, bitter fruit, which he is able to make seem good, ripe and nourishing. It is only an illusion, and once the first bite is taken, many a tear is wept, for those who have fallen into the snare, those who have taken a bite of the devil's fruit realize that they have sold eternity, for a mouthful of wormy apple.
Sin is the centrifugal force that brings man further and further away from God, until finally man is no longer within God's gravitational field, lost and irredeemable, unable to return to the source of joy and peace. A man who continually chooses to give in to sin, is forever lost in the alternative universe, complicit in his own demise, all the while beguiled by the whispers, 'this is freedom, this is freedom.'
Good, is the ethical expression of truth, while evil being the alternative to good, is the moral expression of deception. When Lucifer realized the enormity of his misstep, he immediately attempted to hide it behind false affirmations, and attempted justifications, something all those who choose evil are want to do. The plain truth is this, the final consequence of choosing sin, of choosing evil, of betraying both the cross and the sacrifice Christ made, is death, a death that comes at the end of a lifetime of struggle, hate, suffering and frustration, then comes eternity.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Prophetic Pressure

I receive allot of encouraging e-mails and comments from many of you, as well as some from truly hurting people looking for some guidance, a little light, and perhaps some encouragement themselves. The response is not all positive, in fact I received an e-mail from a man who I will assume, at least from now is a brother in the Lord, that was, and I assume still is very angry with me.
Although his e-mail was a few pages long, and if it was a comment I doubt I would have posted it since he added nothing to the whole of the conversation, the highlights of his writings went something like this:
'You're the chairman of a prophetic ministry, so prophesy already! I trust the words God shows you, but every body's coming out with new messages, and you're being silent. Why aren't you at least pointing out the things you were right on about? If it were anybody else, they'd be up on a soapbox beating their chests, screaming look at me, look at me!'
Sometimes, the most difficult thing for a mouthpiece to do, is to be silent. If God has not spoken, or if He has given a message to be released at a later date, the mouthpiece is beholden to God, to be obedient.
Be silent when God is silent, speak when He says 'speak'. It should be simple. In theory it is. However, I have known many men who having grown impatient with God, and with waiting on God, took it upon themselves to speak on his behalf when He did not speak.
Putting words in God's mouth is a dangerous endeavor, as is speaking before you have been released to do so.
As far as getting on a soapbox is concerned, I don't like splinters, and I suffer from vertigo. To be perfectly honest, it doesn't take much inquiry to see the state of the world, just read the headlines of your local paper, or browse some of the news sites on the web. The culmination of what God has been speaking for the past twenty years is at hand, and we are seeing the pieces come together in faster and more pronounced ways than ever before.
As far as boasting about being right, they weren't my words to begin with, so how can I take credit for them?
I have known good men who have succumbed to prophetic pressure, and felt as though the owed the people a word, even though God remained silent.
Whether you are one step ahead of God, or one step behind Him, you're still not in His perfect will, and this is something I learned a long time ago.
This is the reason why so many men who profess to have a prophetic mantle, continue missing the mark with their words, because the words they spoke were their own.
I love the brethren, I appreciate those who feel led to help the ministry God has entrusted to me, but this does not mean that I would endanger my eternal soul, or feel such indebtedness, that I would go ahead of God, and speak words which He specifically instructed that I keep for an appointed time.
I am sorry some of you feel frustrated, but I do not apologize for the fact that I don't put out a vision or a dream every other week. I only speak when I know with certainty that God has not only spoken, but has released me to pass on the message.
To the wise, even silence speaks volumes, and one does not require weekly updates from the throne room to know that God is using our enemies, our greed, and even nature itself to bring our pride to its knees.
To my brother Albert, who wrote the angry and lengthy e-mail, perhaps your time would be better spent in solitude with God, praying, fasting, learning to hear His voice for yourself, than fishing for fresh words with ever increasing desperation. That which is necessary for your salvation, sanctification, and relationship with Jesus Christ, is already in the Word, and at the end of the day, that is the most important task of all, to make sure that we have an established relationship with our heavenly Father.
Yes God is still speaking, but for now He demands silence, and I, as an obedient servant must acquiesce.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Post Script: The trip to Baltimore was a blessing, at least for me. I got to meet a truly sincere soul, who is hungry for more of God, and if I mention his name he'll probably blush, so I'd better not. Thank you all for your prayers, and thank you to those who made the long drives to come and hear what God put on my heart, I hope your disappointment wasn't too great.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Ashamed and Offended

I don't follow trends, but I pick up on them. When I was younger, still in high school as a matter of fact, (in hindsight that seems so far off, I must be getting old), we had to come up with a fake stock portfolio, and track it for six months. If only I'd had real money in it, I could have retired before turning twenty one.
I fake invested in beginning trends, rather than existing markets, and I made a ton of imaginary money on a little thing known as the 'world wide web' back then, and as they are still known by some today the 'internets' as well as oddly enough, bottled iced tea.
As of late, I've noticed another trend, no, not an investment opportunity, but something truly sinister and vile. It appears it is no longer popular, or acceptable in the mainstream to call yourself a preacher, evangelist, pastor or disciple of Christ. These titles, have been replaced by such ambiguous ones as life coach, motivational speaker, spiritual advisor, or my personal favorite of the bunch, although a little wordy, authority on supernatural phenomenon and spirituality.
There are two passages in the Bible that in my more hopeful and optimistic youth never thought would come to pass during my lifetime.
Luke 7:23, "And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me."
Luke 9:26, "For whosoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father's, and of the holy angels."
It isn't the sheep that are ashamed of, and offended because of Christ, but the very men and women that we've propped up on pedestals, those whom the great majority have chosen to lead them, and to whom they've entrusted their spiritual nourishment.
So if you're in need of a life coach, a mentor, or a motivational speaker, keep listening, applauding, fawning, begging for autographs, and throwing your money down the bottomless pit they call their ministries. If however you are looking to be fed, nourished, if you are looking to be saved, to grow and mature in Christ, you might want to start by cracking the Bible open yourself, and following the instructions therein. Why not try Jesus as your life coach?
He might not tell you 'you're all that' (the title of the newest book by one of America's leading life coaches / evangelists / soon to be divorced pastors / motivational speaker / you get the point...
God's not in the business of making you feel good about yourself He's in the business of molding and transforming you until He feels good about you. Until He can look upon your countenance, peer into your heart and say as He did of Job, that truly you are His servant, blameless and upright, one who fears God and shuns evil.
What a frightfully tragic thing that men and women who would boast of knowing God, of having heard Him, spoken to Him, and one lady with pink hair having sat on His lap, would be ashamed of Christ and His words, words that give life, and meaning and substance to this life on earth.
Many are those who are offended because of Christ, seemingly even within the church, but blessed are those who are not offended because of Him. Be blessed.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

P.S. As the cool kids say, I will be out of pocket for the next three days. In fact I'm traveling to Baltimore tomorrow morning, and returning sometime Monday evening. God bless you all, and thank you for your prayers.

The Pursuit Of An Illusion

I happened to turn on one of the national christian networks the other day, and they were well into another marathon of empty promises, also known as a telethon. The same botox infused faces stared back at me, spouting the same tired stories, urging me to break the back of poverty in my life, with a mere pittance of an offering, namely one thousand dollars.
I was about to turn it off, since I'd heard the same uninspired story more times than I could count already, when a new wrinkle was added to it. The man looked into the camera, and unflinchingly said, 'if you don't think money makes you happy, then you've never had enough of it.'
Rather than hearing crickets through the silence that should have ensued at such an absurd comment, the auditorium burst into enthusiastic applause.
For some unexplained reason, the words money and happiness have become not only synonymous, but seemingly interchangeable within the house of God. If you've got money, then you're happy, and if you're happy than you must have money.
Now I know we can quote the Bible here, and say 'the love of money is the root of all manner of evil', but who pays any mind to what the Bible says anymore anyway? If by some miracle or divine intervention, the magnitude of the parting of the Red Sea, it registers that you've quoted scripture, they're quick to come back with the old standby, 'we're not preaching the love of money, we're just preaching gettin' money.'
We've replaced worshiping Jesus, with worshiping Benjamin Franklin, Ulysses S. Grant, Andrew Jackson and Alexander Hamilton. I could mention Abraham Lincoln and George Washington, but you can't do much with a five spot, or a one dollar bill nowadays.
I know there are at least fifty books, DVDs and teaching series out there, trying to teach the children of God how to get rich, acquire wealth, have everything they've ever wanted, and have fun doing it. Before you go and spend your hard earned money on one of these tutorials and instructional materials, ask yourselves the following question: Does money really bring happiness, or are you about to embark upon the pursuit of an illusion?
If your reason for pursuing money is to acquire happiness, you may want to take a second and gaze upon the human disasters walking about, with millions of dollars in the bank, yet with no sense of self worth, no dignity or self control.
Every time I'm standing in line at the supermarket there is another face staring back at me from the magazine racks, a face attached to a prominent name, attached to a bank account, attached to the deed of a palatial estate, who's just gotten out of rehab, or went into rehab, has developed an eating disorder, has admitted to being an alcoholic, a drug abuser, or has attempted suicide.
If money made you happy, and one's happiness was directly proportionate to the amount of money in your bank account, these people should be dancing down the street, skipping up the sidewalk, and smiling at every passerby.
Some years back there was a young musician, who having upwards of thirty million dollars in the bank, found this life to be so bleak, so pointless, so painful, so empty that he saw fit to take a shotgun blast to the face rather than live one more day. But hey, maybe thirty million wasn't enough to make him happy.
Remember now, if you don't think money makes you happy, you've never had enough of it!
I'm passed shock at this point, and am simply disgusted. I often catch myself thinking how long can this go on, then have to shake the thought out of my head, and replace it with the idea that one more day, may mean one more soul.
Since I'm feeling charitable today, I will give you the keys to true happiness, and it won't cost you a dime. You don't have to order a DVD, you don't have to buy my book, just read the following lines.
How to be happy: Keep your heart from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little from this life, give much, sing often, pray always, be selfless, be loving, be gentle, be godly. All these are made possible, by serving Christ, and Christ alone.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

My Apologies

You hear some people lament the fact that there aren't enough hours in a day, and depending on the busyness of your own schedule, you either nod your head in agreement, or shrug your shoulders, thinking to yourself, well I always seem to make time, or I seem to get everything done.
As cliched and overused a the term may be, there really aren't enough hours in a day. Between driving to Chicago and back yesterday to pick up my middle brother Sergiu, to playing chauffeur most of the day since he needed to find some clothes for his children, to preparing for the trip to Baltimore this weekend, to putting the October November newsletter to bed, to getting a chance to say hello to my wife and kiss her cheek, there really isn't much time left.
I know to some of you that's no excuse, and you shrug your shoulders, thinking to yourselves, well he could have made time to answer my comment, who does he think he is? I would've made time for him. Well, if you've felt slighted, my apologies. I promise I will get to commenting the comments, but please be mindful of the fact that this web blog has gotten more exposure than I expected, and while that's a good thing, I am trying my best to address every one's questions, and there are allot of questions.
To be honest, my plate was full before I started posting on this web blog, but I decided to do it because I knew there are some who would appreciate it and be nourished by it. I try to be a man of my word, to the best of my ability, so when I say I will address your questions, I will do just that, but it will require some patience.
Thank you for taking the time to read, to comment, to pray, and thank you for your understanding.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Failed Expectations

There are few verses in the Bible that scare me. Not because I don't understand them, but rather because I understand them all too well. The verses that scare me most, are not the words penned by mere mortals, but the words spoken by Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God. The church by and large seems to be on standby. We go through the motions every Sunday, sing along with the hymns, if the church we happen to be attending still sings hymns, or shake our heads to the rhythm of the drums, trying to understand the words the worship leader is screaming at us, hoping to make sense of it all, praying to hear the word 'Jesus' thrown in at some point, and waiting. We've gotten good at waiting.
For the past two decades or so, we've been waiting, and waiting, expecting anticipating, that great end time revival that's supposed to fill every church to the rafters, pack out the overflow rooms, and still have hundreds waiting in the parking lot, waving their hands in the air, euphoric with the thought of entering the hallowed halls of the sanctuary.
With hope in our hearts we wait, growing somewhat concerned at the lateness of the hour, at the eruption of sin even within the church, at the gathering darkness, but we're still hopeful. Why just last Sunday, the guest speaker mentioned the coming revival, and how we're supposed to help finance it. See, he said revival was coming too.
Some have waited for so long that they've fallen asleep, in fact a deep sleep, dreaming pleasant dreams, but unlike Euthychus, they sleep in plush recliners not in a window three stories above ground.
They sleep because they figure the noise of the coming revival will stir them from their slumber, and well, they're not the only ones catching a few winks, resting up for that glorious day when they'll have to perform the duty of usher to the unsaved.
Once in a great while their slumber is disturbed by the reality of the world around them, shattering the illusion they've meticulously built for themselves like a stone thrown forcefully through a window. Alas the spiritual anesthesia pumping through their hearts is too strong, unwilling to allow them to be brought to complete alertness, so somewhere between slumber and wakefulness they are dragged back into the deep, never having broken the surface of reason.
And so they slumber on, waiting for a revival that will never come, failing to save themselves from the flames while hoping to save multitudes.
Yes, there are verses that scare me in the Bible, because they contradict popular sentiment, and opinion. One of those verses is the reason I was burdened to write this article:
Luke 18:7-8, "And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him though He bears long with them? I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?"
Unanswered questions scare me, because they are either rhetorical, or the truth is so unnerving that they are better left unanswered.
Rather than live with our heads in the clouds, waiting for a revival that will never come, may we hold fast what we have, that we may overcome, and thus be made pillars in the Temple of God, and receive the crown of life.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Post Script: This is not the article I intended to write. Somewhere between my head and my fingers, there seems to have been a short circuit of sorts, and this is what came out. Lord willing, tomorrow I will post the article I intended to post tonight.

The Essence Of The Message

If one were to take even a passing glance at today's church, it would be obvious that preachers, evangelists and pastors are as caught up in the rat race of life as any other citizen of the world. The spirit of competition is alive and well within the house of God, and it is not a competition for something as noble as saving souls, or bringing people to Christ. It is a competition to see who can accumulate more stuff, then brag about it on national television, who can build the most lavish buildings, and who can come up with newer variations to an old, tired, and now cliched message that spirals in reverse, further and further away from what should be the essence of every message we preach.
Because many consider feeding the sheep a career choice, rather than a calling they attempt by their own wisdom, and relying on their own strengths to outdo the preacher across the street, or the one with the following time slot on christian television. Their hearts are not for the lost, since their hearts have never been circumcised, and so their desires and aspirations are purely human in that their only goal is to fill the seats of the mammoth tabernacle, unconcerned with the state of the souls that sit there for a few hours a month, taking in a watered down message, that does nothing to stir them to repentance.
Yes, I've used the word that is no longer edgy, hip, that has no place in the vernacular of the world we have become so accustomed to speaking, repentance.
I have often studied the sermons of both John the Baptist, and Christ, comparing them, seeing the similarities and the differences. Although John was a more straightforward sort of man, although he pulled no punches when speaking of the Kingdom, or the need for sanctification, and Jesus used parables and stories to enlighten those who would hear, the essence of the message remained the same throughout their ministries. The message was simple, realistic, the only message that had the power to change the world, so its essence was always the same, it was always repentance. Repentance from dead traditions, a turning away from the world and a turning of their faces toward God. It is not the change of denomination, or the change of religion, but a change of one's life, not a patching up of the old life, but a new birth, and a new life in Christ. Without repentance, all that remains is the axe buried deep in the root of the tree, and the heat emanating from he eternal fires of judgment.
It is truly amazing to realize that we can encapsulate the life and ministry of both men, every sermon that they ever spoke, into one word, 'repent'.
For some reason, many preachers today have chosen to dismiss this startling fact, and have guided their ministries and their sermons as far away from repentance as humanly possible. Yes, it is inevitable that some may leave the church, or no longer support your ministry if you start making the essence of your messages repentance, but then again, when you stand before the eternal judge of all that is, when you are face to face with the Creator of all that exists, you can show him your hands, absent of guilt, knowing there will be no blood.
The one message that is most necessary in today's church, is the one message that we rarely hear, namely that without repentance and a new life, birthed of said repentance, all that we've struggled toward, all that we've aspired to, all that we've been able to amass amounts to nothing. In the end, all the cars, boats, homes, and savings bonds will be nothing more than a fistful of ashes, and for many it will be too late, as they realize the error of their ways on that most blessed, and most vengeful day of the Lord.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Always Check The Contents

When we first arrived in America, life was difficult. My mother would work cleaning homes, my father got a job in a factory, but even two paychecks don't go far when there are seven mouths to feed, rent to pay, and clothes to buy. Besides the five of us, my two brothers, my mother and my father, my grandparents had also taken what in hindsight was a fateful journey to America.
Needless to say my mother tried to find new and inventive ways to save a dollar here, a few cents there, and one way she discovered she could save some money, was to make our clothes rather than buy them. (FYI going to school wearing home made clothes didn't make me the most popular guy in my class.)
One day a Romanian neighbor who had been in country a few months longer than ourselves told my mother of a place in downtown Los Angeles where she could find cheap fabric, and so every other week we would take the bus, three transfers later arriving at our destination.
Since I spoke better English than my mother, she always dragged me along, and since I enjoyed seeing something other than what amounted two the two bedroom cardboard box we were living in at the time, I went without complaint. (Even after starting the hand of help ministries, publishing my grandfather's books, and being what in the eyes of the world would be considered successful, we lived in that apartment for thirteen years.)
On one of our trips, I know i was in late January, because my father's birthday was a few days away we came across a street merchant who was selling 'designer men's cologne' at fire sale prices.
After haggling for a few minutes we finally agreed on $10 for a bottle of Polo cologne. my mother paid the man, never thinking to look inside that green box to see if the bottle was in there. She didn't take the time to check the contents, and see if she was really getting what she had paid for, or if she'd just dropped ten dollars on an empty box. If you can't trust a guy selling cologne out of a cardboard box on a street corner, who can you trust?
A few days later, my mother gave my father his birthday present, a smile on her face knowing she'd saved a bundle on his gift. He opened the box enthusiastically, only to find an empty glass bottle, with a 'tester' sticker on it.
Ever since that experience, I have learned to check the contents. Truth in advertising notwithstanding, I want to know that I'm getting what I paid for.
The same lesson can be applied to men and the titles they assign themselves. There are many street merchants roaming about, trying to sell you an empty box at a discounted rate.
This is why every time I hear a man's office before I hear his first name, when shaking his hand, my warning bells start jingling, and I become very weary. For instance, if I hear the words, 'I am prophet, or apostle', before I hear Bob or Larry, my thoughts instantly go back to that street merchant. When someone is trying just a little too hard to sell you, you should resist buying all the more.
When my grandfather passed away, there was a line of men and women, salivating at the thought of receiving his mantle, claiming it, or otherwise planning to take it by force.
When God called me to continue the work, to be honest I did not see it as a reason to rejoice, but rather felt the crushing weight of accountability and responsibility upon my shoulders.
This is why I have never claimed either a mantle or a title, and consider myself nothing more than a fellow soldier in God's army, a servant of Christ, who like the rest of you wakes up every morning, picks up his cross, and continues his journey. I know from whence I came, I know where I grew up, and I realize that there is anything noteworthy, or special in me, it is God, and I have no right to take upon myself the glory due Him.
I have had the humbling privilege of working with true men of God, men whose gifting eclipsed mine on my best day, and to the last they walked in humility and brokenness before God.
Since I've gotten some comments as to whom we should trust in these uncertain times, I've found an article on another site that gives an original description of a man of God. Though it should be established policy that we trust no man, it is sometimes beneficial to our spiritual growth to heed their advice, and their warnings as long as they are Biblical.
I urge you to cut and paste, I thin that's the right term, the following web address, and read the article if you are still in a quandary as to which of the many prophetic voices you should lend your ear to in this season of confusion: http://watchman.net/articles/savant.html

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

My Thanks

It's good to see comments of substance, from men of substance who see this world, and the church for what it is and not for the image that they are trying to portray. My thanks to all those that take the time to comment, and share their thoughts, and hearts, you make this web log all the better for it. I have been as nourished by your comments, as some of you have been by my posts. Onward Christian soldiers, onward.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

A Chilling Image

I woke up this morning, and as I have grown accustomed, after my morning prayer I turned on my laptop. After logging on, I went to a news sight I visit sometimes, just to see what's happening on this spinning rock we call home.
I was in the process of wiping sleep from my eyes, when an image popped up that did more to bring me to full alert status than a cold shower and a slap in the face combined. Grinning back at me, pixilated in high resolution, were the faces of Mahmoud Ahmadinajad and Vladimir Putin, the two men shaking hands, the bond of friendship evident on their faces.
For those of you that were still uncertain whom the democracy loving Vladimir would side with, well, you've gotten your answer.
I got the gnawing feeling, looking at that picture that I was witnessing the chess master and his unwitting pawn. You see, hate has a way of blinding you to other men's agendas, and as long as the man promises to 'have your back' to support you in your endeavor to exterminate, eradicate, or otherwise wipe off the face of the earth the object of your seething hatred, you don't question whether or not he has hidden motives, or what's in it for him.
I believe that in the eyes of Vladimir Putin, mad Mahmoud and his ilk, are a means to an end. The oil surplus is just a pleasant bonus, but his intentions are, what they have always been, to use third party nations, nations that harbor murderous hatred toward America to do his dirty work, to weaken us both financially, and militarily, so that when the opportune time comes, we would be too weak to put up a fight.
The pieces are falling into place with startling rapidity, I believe I talked about new alliances being forged against America on this very site, about a week ago, and now we are seeing it come to fruition.
If you're worried now, I have some bad news for you, this is only the beginning.
The number one rule in planning and executing such a monumental shift of power, is to consistently and without fail assess your enemy's resolve, to know his strengths and weaknesses, always prodding, always looking for the chink in the armor, that instant when due to either distraction or lack of concentration, he lets down his guard.
Let's be honest, there are more chinks in the armor than we can count, and anyone of them can be exploited in such a way that they would have disastrous ramifications.
With all these things taking place, it's good to know our refuge is certain, and our protection prepared. There are benefits to being a true servant of God, an though they may not be the yachts, private jets, and palaces some believe, in the coming months, I would take the peace of mind that God offers over those things any day of the week.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Self Inflicted Wounds

I've been learning how to surf the web of late, and have come across some interesting, and some not so interesting sites.
On many websites the opinion among a majority in Christendom is that because of the latest wave of embarrassing headlines concerning some of the more popular televangelists, the world has started persecuting us.
To say that this is persecution dear friends is to demean and diminish the definition of persecution, and disparage dare I say tarnish the memory and sacrifice of those who were truly persecuted.
One cannot shoot himself in the foot, then attempt to convince anyone within earshot that they were brutally attacked. In police jargon they call that a self inflicted wound, and after they establish accident or intent, they either send you to a specialist to determine whether or not you are suicidal, or they send you home with a bandage on your foot, and call you a fool behind your back. The church is doing this to itself, lukewarm living, and substance less faith, have bloomed, and now their fruit is heavy on the branches of men's countenance.
If some of you believe that exposing homosexuals in the pulpit, reporting on wife-beaters, (even if the couple claimed to be apostles, prophets, whatever the newest title they've afforded themselves was that day), if you think the fact that financial impropriety has finally boiled to the surface and is being exposed is grounds for calling it persecution, my friend, you are not ready for real persecution.
Persecution isn't when you get caught with your hand in the cookie jar, or exposed for not living what you are preaching, it is being beaten, tortured, maimed and killed for your faith, for the sake of Christ.
What is happening now, is men and women who would not submit to God, those who would not humble themselves and repent, are being exposed and shamed by the very devil that beguiled them in the first place.
God's desire is to humble, the devil's is to shame.
Personally I believe that for too long men who call themselves God's servants have lived absent of accountability, a law unto themselves, and slowly but surely their intentions were perverted, and they once more became slaves to the corruption they had left behind.
The only tragedy in all this drama, is the innocent sheep, the hungry Christian, who placed their trust in men, and are now left disillusioned and disappointed.
If per chance you happen to be one such sheep, I have some advice for you that will spare you further grief and heartache in the future: Put your trust in God, He will never fail you or forsake you.
Follow men long enough, and sooner or later you will realize that they are just that, men. I know, I know, they said they were the apple of God's eye, God's anointed, apostle to the nations, your own personal prophet, a Jesus substitute but how many of them need to turn out to be greedy merciless wretches, somewhat less than human, living only for the now, before you realize there is no substitute for Jesus?
One way, One truth, One life, all three encompassed in Christ, and what He did on the cross for you and for me.

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.