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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Reality Check

Jeremiah 22:21, “I spoke to you in your prosperity, but you said, ‘I will not hear.”
Eyes that do not see and ears that do not hear are everywhere nowadays. They are no longer isolated incidents, but an epidemic of global proportions. On every street corner, in every home, in every church, you will find those who have chosen of their own volition not to hear the voice of the eternal Father.
Our prosperity has made us dull and hard of hearing, and on those occasions when God’s voice penetrates the haze of opulence, we shut it out, chase it away like some unwanted and unwelcome vagabond intent on destroying our mood, and shattering the earthly contentment we’ve so meticulously fashioned for ourselves.
With our lips we say we want to hear God speak, we want to hear His voice, but in our hearts we know it is a lie. When God speaks, when it is His voice carried upon the winds to the four corners of the earth, trumpeted like booming thunder, it is offensive, and most, even those calling themselves His own, turn their heads in dismay.
We hear the voice, but the words trouble us. The words are not what we want to hear, they are not what we would like them to be, for they are not words of blessing and prosperity, of easy life and cheap salvation, but rather they are words of judgment and trial, of tribulation and heartache, of tested faith and spiritual endurance. We want God, but on our terms, we want Him to speak, but only the words that comfort the flesh, the words that tell us we’re okay, that we will thrive, that we will prosper, that we will be blessed and embraced by friend and foe alike. Truth shatters illusion every time, and the illusion is cracked and crumbling.
We desire God to speak, only if He will say what we want Him to say. If His words offend, then we turn to the peddlers, to the priests who teach for pay, and the prophets who divine for money, who ease our burdened conscience with the increasingly evident lies that no harm shall come upon us, for the Lord is still among us.
Today’s Christian does not want to hear the true voice of God. He only pretends he wants it. Most would rather hear the word peace, even if it were a lie, than hear the word judgment even if it were the truth.
God has been handed an eviction notice in regards to His own house, and yet we still have the temerity to say He is among us. We have told Him to His face that we will not hear, even though He speaks, for His words burn and convict and compel a decision on our part. The times wherein we choose to trust God are quickly coming to an end, and very soon we will be forced to trust God. For those who have not experienced trust in the heavenly Father during those days when they had a choice, having to do so, and having no other choice in the matter will be a frightening experience indeed. Trust in God is nurtured; it is grown organically, and cannot be practiced suddenly, like the flipping of a light switch.
We would rather experience raucous laughter than groaning and tears; we would rather spend our time doing one of a hundred futile and worthless things than bend our knee in prayer. We are a proud people, and the idea of humbling ourselves before the eternal God of all, of submitting to His will even if it were to the detriment of the flesh, is both foreign and offensive to our sensibilities.
We have become that which He despises, we practice that which He condemns, yet we don’t even blush when we puff our chests out proudly and say, ‘the Lord is with us.’
We chose not to hear His voice in our prosperity; we chose to reject the cross in lieu of the easy chair. We rejected and despised the messengers who preached repentance, transformation, regeneration, rebirth, and lovingly embraced those who with wolfish grins told us all that was needed was to wave a hand in the air and write a check.
As the old adage goes, the times they are changing. Our season of prosperity is swiftly coming to its end, like the last few minutes of dusk until the night covers all. We will not hear His voice in our prosperity. Will we perhaps hear his voice in our poverty?


With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

16 comments:

Ryan said...

True words, Michael.

God requires that we live a life of humility before Him and that we humble ourselves before Him daily so that He can give us all that we need--correction, wisdom, understanding, peace, discernment.

The Lord only chastens those who He loves. Who will die to themselves (to the will of their flesh), take up their cross (be obedient to all that God has spoken to you regardless of what your will is) and follow Him (He is the only way to the Father)?

Let Christ be fully formed in us all. Let our expectations flee that may we believe God and it be accounted unto us for righteousness.

God be glorified,
Ryan

Elm Street Chapel said...

Amen Michael!
I am so delighted that you are preaching to the 99 rather than looking for the one who wants to be hidden. Of the 99 that you just ministered to, you gave them the truth, yet only a portion will take it to heart and truly seek its full meaning. This post could have been written to Jerusalem before being overrun by Babylon, the army of God that brought judgment. They wanted approval for their ways not truly considering God's ways.

In this day, just as you described, people only want to hear, "your okay". Just as Israel at Mt Sinai, was scared to death to hear the voice of God on the mountain. The ground shook, the mountain burned with fire, thunder boomed so loud it frightened even the strongest of men. Then Israel said, "You talk to God" to Moses. Today’s "Christians" want to hear a prophet speak words of comfort, but there is none to give, not from a true prophet of God. The only comfort to be had is in hearing the voice of God yourself and being able to stand before Him. People want to be lead, none want to take responsibility for their own salvation. People want to be lead and wicked men are more than willing to do so. People do not want to believe that they will have to walk in their own righteousness as Job, Noah and Daniel. They are fearful of God, not truly knowing Him in spirit, or in truth.

Wrath is never pretty, wrath of God? Like never was before or will be again.

Draw close to God while He may be found, draw close to God while He is near. Today is the day to make up ours minds.

L,J,P&HG
Dave

Anonymous said...

Thanks Mike.

I was thinking the other day about how difficult it will be for those that have not prepared. I think it will still be somewhat of a shock for Christians that have been preparing spiritually; but nothing compared to those that are still wanting everything to return to "normal".

I watched the news this morning and a financial anaylist said; "Don't worry, all is well, nothing to be afraid of". I just smiled and went about my day.

God Bless,
Jeff

R.Leigh said...

Thank-you for speaking difficult truths that many are afraid to speak, or simply do not see. In many ways I was one of those you were describing, but in my arrogance I thought I was seeing and hearing clearly. God in His infinite love and mercy has brought me low, taking away my prosperity and my self-sufficiency, bringing painful discipline into every level of my life until I felt He had forsaken me. He did it to bring me to a place of seeing and hearing HIS truth, not all the counterfeits. Your ministry is one that is sharing HIS truth to a lost and dying land, full of people who in their arrogance think they are seeing and hearing clearly but are only stumbling blindly into eternal darkness. I have known all my life I would see this wonderful country brought low, our way of life forever changed. That day is growing closer, and when it does come about it will be His love and mercy that brings it to pass. One by one He is drawing many of us out of deadly ignorance and into His light and truth. May He continue to bless you and your ministry with His sight, His presence, and His strength to complete the task He has brought you forth to do for His glory.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Judgment has come. As in a rain, first a few drops and then a downpour. Faith, and TRUE Love of God our Father, and our precious Lord Jesus will see us through. Jesus always spoke of the lost as many. Jesus always spoke of the saved as few. Next Sunday as we sing "When we all get to Heaven", lets take a look around us, then deep inside us.Yes God is speaking, I hear him. He is also showing things soon to come. Only those willing to listen will have the guidance to make it through. He who endures to the end will be saved. God bless you, and all my dear brothers and sisters. May God have mercy.

Anonymous said...

It is heart breaking that AmeriKa refuses to heed the Word of the Lord, refuses to follow His written Word, refuses the warnings given her.

Surely her calamity will come SUDDENLY.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for speaking the truth about this Michael.

I have been trying to explain to my "prosperity-driven" friends that God has said: "enough is enough" our economy is crashing. Our money is rapidly becoming worthless and yet.... now the prosperity preachers are saying that it's the devil's fault that the prosperity isn't coming. Just give more [seed]money, increase your faith, declare to God His promises....blah...blah...blah...

Meanwhile, God had me in the Book of Jude and told me to flee that church as fast as I could. Thank God, He gave me eyes to see and a love of the truth.
Christa

A Seed Sower said...

You are so right, that is a true Word Young Bro Michael. I had a preacher tell me not to long ago, when pointing out the order within the church of the ministry of The Holy Spirit, quoting the Word in Corinthians, tell me after reading God's Word.."I guess we will have to agree to disagree."...Listen folks when we disagree with the Truth of the Word of God, we are past help are we not...have we not chosen our own way in our arrogance, are we not a law unto ourselves..each doing what seems right in their own eyes...God help the church, those that want help that is..God Bless you and welcome back state side Bro Michael & Monica.

Anonymous said...

Dear brother,
I had a class today, the teacher is a returned missionary from New Guinea,now his sons are there. He mentioned how those poor people in the tribe he served love Heaven, they are waiting for heaven, and comforted by the message of the hope Jesus promised to give us later.
Maybe a comfortable life here on earth is actually a snare to us, and we will end up in wasting all the time God allowed us to have here.
I was always discouraged each time when I know people welcome those who teach the prosperity gospel which is not a gospel. But, thank God, now I know "for His name's sake, He reserved seven thousand who had not bowed down to Baal and did not kiss him".
People told me there is no true Bible college in US now, but thank God I found this small one.
Freesia

Anonymous said...

Brother Michael,

The Lord has had me camping out in Jeremiah for awhile. The similarities of our day and his day are quite erie. Judah was enjoying a time of prosperity when Jeremiah first started prophesying about the coming destruction during the reign of King Josiah.

Jeremiah prophesied for almost 40 years before Judah saw a complete fulfillment of the promised destruction by Babylon. Jeremiah's words were despised and rejected. Even until the very end, there were pillow prophets that opposed him who were speaking peace and safety even though everyone could clearly see the handwriting on the wall by then.

I was just reading this morning in Jeremiah 28 when a prophet named Hananiah openly rebuked Jeremiah and promised that the yoke of Babylon would be broken off their necks within two years.

There are a couple things that I gleaned from reading this account that American Christians should take heed. First, we should be very cautious about listening to a so-called prophet who is promising peace and prosperity. In Jeremiah 28:8-9, it says, "The prophets that have been before me and before thee of old prophesied both against many countries, and against great kingdoms, of war, and of evil, and of pestilence. The prophet which prophesieth of peace, when the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known, that the Lord hath truly sent him."

The very nature of the calling of the prophet is to share the heart of God primarily by reproof and calling people to repentance and to warn of promised judgment if such repentance isn't found. The fact that many so-called prophets in today's church are promising prosperity and revival should be the first clue that they are probably false.

Second, we better be careful about claiming to be God's mouthpiece and giving the people a false sense of security when no such security is warranted. It actually cost Hananiah his life. Jeremiah 28:15-17 reads, "Then said the prophet Jeremiah unto Hananiah the prophet, hear now, Hananiah; the Lord hath not sent thee; but thou makest this people to trust a lie. Therefore, thus saith the Lord; behold, I will cast thee from off the face of the earth; this year thou shalt die, because thou hast taught rebellion against the Lord. So Hananiah the prophet died the same year in the seventh month."

Judgment is coming to the house of God and it will strike all of the pillow prophets who have taught rebellion against the Lord saying, 'Peace, peace' when there is no peace.

Even so, come Lord Jesus and cleanse your house just like you drove out the moneychanges of your day. Amen!

Watching and praying,

Brother Andrew

KsDanny said...

Brother Michael, that is truley a word inspired by the Spirit of the Living God. I wished that I could sit here and tell you that it doesn't apply to me, just everyone else. I wished that I could tell you that I don't share some of the tendancies you described, but I cannot. I am not as blind as I once was but I still feed my flesh more than a child of the living God aught to. I know that the times are coming and are even at our door where there will be no more luke warmness. Its a darn shame to say it but I'm not sure if I even know how to repent until it hurts worse not to than it does to stay in my sin. Is'nt it strange how most of us don't do what we know we should until we have to? It is pathetic I know but also probabley typical of those of us that have been "called out from amongst them" and are having the image of His Son perfected in us. I am grateful that in His mercy He has not allowed me or my wife to remain without eyes to see or ears to hear. My heart is increasingly sickened by the ways of the world and I pray that some day soon I will obey Him in love and not out of fear of retribution because I want to avoid His wrath. Brother Danny

Marcel said...

It's interesting that less than a week after the President return from Israel Our economy takes another deep cut.
The arrogance of America and her leader dividing up Israel/Jerusalem has only one cure.
Zechariah 12:3 The cutting in pieces has begun.
And the blessing has been replaced by the curse.
Geneis 12:3
Our wickedness has ripened for the final harvest and the bride has become a whore.
A small remnant will be save as before.

excerpts from :

When God Takes Down His House
http://www.borntowin.net/newsite/NewsLetter/index.aspx?ltwno=131
They all knew the story by heart. God himself actually entered this building and filled it with smoke. That had never happened before anywhere in the world, and it would never happen again.
This great Temple had hosted over 330 years of the Passover. For all those years, it had been the hub for millions of camping pilgrims at the Feast of Tabernacles. It had been the center of the worship of Yahweh for generation after generation. It stood there looking as permanent as the mountains around it. It was the very heart of their faith, the symbol of their God, the rock around which all Israel gathered. It was the very work of God, God’s own house.
And it was doomed.
The young man standing there to speak was no newcomer. He had been there many times before. He was a preacher of righteousness, one who condemned sin and corruption and warned of the anger of God for these things. Not the least of the things that concerned him was the corruption, not only of the worship at this place, but the corruption of the courts of justice that had become commonplace.
The young man’s name was Jeremiah. He had been preaching to the people who assembled there for some time. Day after day, Jeremiah had gone to the courthouse steps and preached against the sin and corruption of the religious leadership, and of the people. He had enumerated their sins, he had cited the laws broken, he had railed against the idolatry and the perversion of justice. But hardly anyone paid him any heed. The reason may surprise you. The people did not listen to Jeremiah because of the Temple standing there gleaming in the sunlight.
The Temple was the very symbol of God and his power. It was just not possible for Jeremiah to be right about this. "I worship God here," they thought. "I pray here, I offer sacrifice here, I’m okay. If I stay close to the Temple, I’ll be okay. I will be safe here. God will never allow anything to happen to his Temple."
The Temple conveyed a false sense of security to the people, and so God had Jeremiah explain it to them. "Stand in the gate of the Temple," he said, "and preach." The message God gave him was simple: "Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place" (Jeremiah 7:3). It was not enough to merely be in the place where the Temple stood, a change in their deeds was necessary.
"Don’t trust in lying words," Jeremiah said, with a sweep of his arm over the temple gate, "saying, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, are these." Now the buildings were indeed the Temple of the Lord. Why was it a lie to say that they were? The answer seems to be that there were other prophets preaching that it was enough to stand in the shadow of the Temple. That was the lie. Jeremiah repeated the call to repentance with specifics: "If ye thoroughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye thoroughly execute judgment between a man and his neighbour; If ye oppress not the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your hurt: Then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, for ever and ever" (vv. 5-7).
It is hard to imagine a simpler, cleaner sermon. It is a call to repentance, upright conduct, and an honest system of justice. How could a man not respond positively to this? But the sermon was not finished. Jeremiah had more to say about the lies that had been told in the very place he was standing.
"But look, you are trusting in deceptive words that are worthless. Will you steal and murder, commit adultery and perjury, burn incense to Baal and follow other gods you have not known, and then come and stand before me in this house, which bears my Name, and say, ‘We are safe’—safe to do all these detestable things?" (vv. 8-10 NIV).......................I’m not going to ask what you should do when you hear a preacher like Jeremiah say these things. Everyone knows you should repent when you hear a sermon like this. What I am asking is this: What do you do when the die is cast, when God has finally decided to take down his own house, his own work? For this is where Jeremiah found himself: "Don’t pray for these people," said God, "I will not listen to you." It was too late. So what should you do if you ever find yourself in that place, that moment, when it becomes clear that God is taking down his house?
There are several things to think about. First, you should not attempt to rebuild what God is taking down. That would be pointless. The first thing is to pray Daniel’s prayer of national and personal confession and repentance (see Daniel 9). Then, you keep on doing the right things. You keep the faith. You keep your head down and stay out from under God’s anger. You make the best you can of what God has given you. And you wait for God’s next move, realizing this: It may be a long wait........................
We know what happened to Daniel after the fall of Jerusalem, and what happened is instructive in some important ways. Daniel kept the faith in the face of all kinds of adverse pressures. Daniel acknowledged, in one of the truly great prayers of the Bible, that God was just in what he had done. Daniel rose to the very highest levels of government in Babylon. Mind you, this was the real and original Babylon, not a cheap imitation. This was the seat of every kind of paganism, and yet Daniel still participated in, practically ran, the government at one point. And at all times and in all circumstances, Daniel kept the faith.
There was another man, Nehemiah, who had not yet been born when the Temple fell. Born in exile, he still kept the faith. He was the wine steward of the Persian king, some 140 years after the fall of Jerusalem. There came a day when a kinsman of his arrived from Jerusalem, and he asked them about the Jews who remained there. He was crushed to learn that the people were in great affliction and reproach. The walls of the city were broken down and all the gates burned. He was heartbroken.
Nehemiah would eventually return, rebuild the walls, and secure Jerusalem, but there was nothing this great man could have done until it was God’s time to move. And he could easily have failed, had he been a lesser man.

A Seed Sower said...

Those who love the prosperity, are believing a lie, they don't believe that we are living in the last days, they work to change government believing that their prosperity will continue if only they can get a so called moral leader in power, we've had them...it doesnt change the hearts of men, it doesnt draw men to repentance, it just makes them covet more of this worlds goods. It doesnt draw men to God, to do His will...There is another false gospel out there that is called Kingdom now, that says most of the Bible has been fulfilled, there will be no antichrist, God is through with the Jews, the born again believers have replaced Israel...it is all lies folks..No political leader can save us, only God can save us, but He won't because we refuse to humble ourselves and be obedient to His Word...We are not to look to the hand of man to help us, we are not to trust in governments, we are to trust in The Most High Godthanks for letting me share Bro Michael..

Anonymous said...

Thank You for offering living water to a dying people/nation! I am saddened only in that so few choose to drink!

Anonymous said...

Michael
thank you for your family's commitment to the truth.I can identify with others commenting, like KsDanny, as I too have wandered off the Lord's path many times over the last 35 yr. Slowly, He has been working in me, to aright my direction in Him.I am trying to learn what I ahould have learned many years ago, ie how to seek His will and do it, how to give no quarter to the flesh, etc.I pray and ask your prayers in this regard, and for my family, as those who are Christians are complacent and blind to the type of thing you have shared, and there are others who are not serving God - thinking they have lots of time, to serve Him at a later point in life (the young adults in the famiily).Pray with me that He can penetrate the fog the enemy has envelopped them in and rescue the perishing as the old hymn called it.

simon said...

I expect that the prosperity in the west as we know it will come to an end, perhaps in the very near future...and yet, it seems that in those nations - in fact much of the world - where poverty, persecution and death are normal, the true Church flourishes and becomes strong, because believers have nowhere and nothing but Jesus. I remember once a preacher saying to me "No rights, no resources, no reputation but Jesus only" The false church will fall, but the Bride will be prepared in the secret place.