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Friday, December 27, 2013

Compromised!


Although you hate to do it, sometimes you have to admire the enemy’s battle tactics. It’s hard to do when you’re engaged in warfare with him, and you see that his plans are bearing fruit, but if you can muster the wherewithal to take a step back and objectively assess the situation from afar, you come to realize that the enemy’s long term strategy has worked brilliantly.

I’ve been mulling over the situation I addressed in my previous post for the past few days, looking at it from different angles, and wondering, sometimes out loud, why so many pastors are still silent on this matter, and why the supposed spiritual leaders of our day are pretending as though this is a nonissue, and not deserving of their time.

I did not come to the following conclusion lightly, I did not come upon it haphazardly, but the only thing that makes sense, the only answer to the question of why are the leaders silent, is because they themselves are compromised.

In light of recent events certain truths have become undeniable. Among them, the undeniable truth that Paul wasn’t just nitpicking when he said a bishop must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach, not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, not quarrelsome, not covetous, and the list goes on.

Paul didn’t just pull some virtues out of a hat with which he decided to burden the leadership of the congregation, he itemized the virtues a leader ought to have in order to be above reproach and have the ability to speak truth with authority.

The reason all these things are prerequisite for someone to be a bishop, or a leader in God’s house, is because if he is these things, then he is in no way compromised, and when he speaks against sin, it will not be from a position of hypocrisy, or ineffectualness because he is guilty of the selfsame things, but a position of authority and conviction.

The enemy’s master stroke was to convince the leaders of God’s house that we need to become like the world in order to attract the world, and once we became like the world, we lost our flavor, we became compromised, and the enemy had something he could always point to if ever we thought it necessary to speak against sin.

The mammoths, the gargantuan, the spiritual giants of our day, are pretty much all compromised in one way or another, some in more extreme ways than others, but all because they did not meet the requirements set forth by the Gospel, and also because when they did not meet these most basic of requirements the congregation just winked and shrugged their shoulders.

Now, because these men have so many skeletons in their closets that the doorframe is threatening to buckle, they are silent for fear of someone turning the door handle and peeking in.

Having studied up on this man from Louisiana a bit more, I believe the fact that he is the husband of one wife – his sweetheart from his early youth –  because he is a temperate  man, not given to wine, not greedy for money, and not covetous, the enemy had nothing on him, and nothing he could be shamed with.

Why the deafening silence? Because unqualified men have hijacked the positions of power in God’s house, and the sheep are so distracted and indifferent, that as long as there’s no video of the guy doing something tawdry, they’ll go along to get along, and sweep it all under the rug.

Sin has neutered the leaders of God’s house, and now they are as silent as church mice, because they would rather the spotlight be on anyone but themselves.

I don’t have to go through the list. You know the list already. You know the prominent names, you know the sins they fell into, you know they never stepped down, or removed themselves from ministry, and in knowing this, you likewise know why they are silent, and why they will continue to remain silent no matter how brutal the onslaught of the enemy, or how violent the campaign against the saints.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas!

May the love of King Jesus fill your hearts this Christmas season. May you be with those you love, and understand the beauty of what the birth of Jesus truly means for each one of us. 

You are my brothers, my sisters, my friends, and with a joyful heart I wish you all a Merry Christmas. 

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr. 

Friday, December 20, 2013

The Cowardly Lions


Recently, a man from Louisiana did something which in the eyes of many was vile, inflammatory, explosive, incendiary, unacceptable, and worthy of scorn….he quoted the Bible!

With simple words, in his simple way he called sin by name, and reminded all who had ears to hear that God is not mocked. Though some might insist that special dispensations are being handed out like foam fingers at a football game, the Word remains the Word, and  the dogs, the sorcerers, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters, and whoever loves and practices lies, are still found outside, not having entered through the gates into the city.

Since one of the worst offenses for a sinner is to be reminded of the consequences of their sin, the backlash was quick in coming, and this man was summarily let go from his job on a television show about the business he’d built from scratch making duck calls of all things.

What rubs me raw and infuriates me to no end, is that the selfsame ‘spiritual leaders’ who threatened to march on Washington because some senator attempted to have them audited, are thoroughly silent when it comes to standing with this man and echoing his sentiment, in that sin is still sin in the eyes of God.

Oh, you cowards. Oh, you spineless, gutless succubae whose only interest is the padding of your billfold and the maintaining of the lifestyle you’ve become accustomed to. Will you not defend the Gospel for fear of being labeled a zealot? Will you not defend the Gospel for fear of no longer being loved by the world?

I do not know this man from Louisiana, but I do know character when I see it, and right now, as things stand, he has more character than every televangelist put together.

Stop calling yourselves soldiers of the cross. Stop calling yourselves ambassadors for Christ, stop lying to people and insisting that you are transforming the world, you cowards!

It is the world that has transformed you, and now, when it counts you side with the world because you love the world so.

If your convictions will not compel you to take a stand, perhaps you can be shamed into it! Perhaps that’s what it will take, and even then you will find a way to soften the blow, to dilute the truth, to make those who would preach the Gospel seem fringe and unloving.

You may think yourselves lions, but at best you are cowardly lions. At worst, you are the tools of the devil, pretending to serve Jesus while leading people to hell because you don’t love them enough to tell them the truth.

Ezekiel 18:20-21, “The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself. But if a wicked man turns from all his sins which he has committed, keeps all My statutes, and does what is lawful and right, he shall surely live; he shall not die.”

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

An Answer to a Friend


Legend has it that after many years of paying tribute, a Wallachian lord had finally had enough and refused to pay any further levies to the Ottoman Empire. Shortly thereafter, the lord found himself surrounded on all sides by an Ottoman horde, something not wholly unexpected. For the moment the lord, his family, and his men at arms were safe behind the castle walls, and since the Ottomans could not penetrate the walls, they decided to lay siege to the castle.

From the first day of the siege, the lord, his generals, and his eldest son would wake at dawn, dress in the most resplendent armor they possessed, and walk the battlements of the castle until noonday.

One day turned into a week, a week turned into a month, until finally the lord’s son could take it no more and asked his father, ‘why do we do this? They will either wait us out, we will starve, and they will have won, or they will grow tired and move on sparing us. Why do we get up every morning, put on our armor, and march along the walls?’

The lord looked at his son, then met the eyes of every one of the men marching with him that morning and simply said, ‘because we must.’

I know it’s hard! I know it’s getting harder with each passing day. The sense that those who get it get it and those who don’t never will, is palatable. Many men I am honored to call friends and brothers in arms share this selfsame feeling, wondering, and often aloud, why they continue to do what they do when they seem to be oscillating between preaching to the choir, and preaching to those whom they sense will never hear.

The cold hard truth is that we are all human. Every one of us, to the last, no matter how well respected or esteemed, is in the end human. We are all frail creations with needs and heartaches and pains and setbacks.

The only difference is, those of us who are screaming into the void until our lungs give out drew the short straw and we were called to speak.

We do what we do because we must. We do not do it for glory, or fame, or recognition, we do it out of obedience and because we were commanded to.

In our frailty, in our weakness, in our hardships, we press on, we press in, and put on the armor and walk the wall, because we must.

This right here, this banging a few keys on a laptop and hitting ‘send’ is the easy part. The hard part is what none of us talk about because some might see it as boasting, while others might see it as whining.

The hard part is agonizing over the message time and again until you are certain it is what God wants to communicate. The hard part is praying for others who call or write in even when you know you need prayer just as much as they do. The hard part is being looked up to as something more than what we are, and seeing the flash of anger on people’s faces when you try to tell them they are wrong in thinking you are special.

We do the work because we are called to do the work. Not because it’s convenient, not because it’s easy, not because we have nothing else on the books, or we’re in perfect health, or all the bills are paid.

Jesus never qualified His sending forth of His disciples with, ‘if you want, if you can, if you’re up to it, if it’s not too much trouble, or if you can get a book deal out of it.’

Jesus just said go, and they went, and they turned the world upside down.

The person I’m writing this to knows it’s for her, but it’s not just for her. It’s for all of us, whether we are called to ministry in a greater or lesser capacity. We all make up the body, and no member is greater than the other because we are all dependent upon the head of the body which is Christ Jesus.

Pray for those still willing to walk the wall! Pray for those still willing to stand guard! Pray for those still willing to speak the truth, because they are a dying breed, and if they are done away with, then hope is truly lost.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

A Call To Arms Part 9


Another reason many believers suffer defeat at the hands of the enemy is their ignorance of the weapons they have at their disposal. You can have the most up to date gear, the most technologically advanced armaments, but if you don’t know how to use them, or what button to push, or which way to point it, chances are all that gear will only slow you down when you’re trying to run away.

Most individuals have a vague understanding of the weapons believers have access to, but as far as a deeper understanding of how they are used, or when they ought to be used, that is something beyond their grasp.

As previously mentioned there are weapons of defense, there are weapons of attack, and there weapons that can be used to both defend oneself, and attack the enemy if the need arises.

Romans 13:12, “The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.”

This armor of light Paul speaks of in Romans is also referred to as the armor of righteousness in Corinthians. It is something we, ourselves must put on, after we have cast off the works of darkness, and broken ties with all it entails.

God will not dress us when we can dress ourselves, just as any parent will not insist upon dressing their child once that child has learned to dress themselves. Our slothfulness and distraction prone mindset oftentimes steers us toward the conclusion that if the armor of light is not fastened upon us, it must somehow be God’s fault, and not our own.

The Word never insinuates we ought to let God dress us, it tells us to dress ourselves!

Another aspect we must take into account is that the works of darkness and the armor of light cannot overlap. We cannot continue to cling to the works of darkness while simultaneously putting on the armor of light, because they repel and reject each other, forever at odds, forever foes, forever mortal enemies.

The gray area of the spiritual man only exists in the duplicitous man’s imagination. God sees either darkness or light, good or evil, saved or lost. God does not work with shadows, with gray areas, nor does He approve of the barely getting in mindset so many find wholly acceptable in His sight.

When we put on the armor of light, we are of the light, we serve the light, we defend the light, and fight on behalf of the light. We cannot be divided in heart or mind and still claim to be of the light.

It is because of this inescapable truth that I am reticent in giving men and women who would twist the Gospel, and attempt to sidestep the Word of God a pass, or the benefit of the doubt. This is doubly true of those who have risen to prominence, and see themselves as spiritual leaders of authorities.

Each of us must measure every word, each of us must weigh every thought, each of us must compare every teaching to the Word and make sure it is in harmony with it, and this need is amplified tenfold when men stand before other men and attempt to teach them the mysteries of God.

When the Word of God speaks of armor, certain things are implied just by the word itself.

First, one needs armor only if he is expecting battle. Second, one needs armor only if he has an enemy who is skilled enough or equipped enough to hurt them, wound them, or maim them in some way. Third, one needs armor only if confrontation and battle are imminent, a given, and no means of a ceasefire or armistice exists.

You don’t see men walking around in armor during peacetime. Every soldier in the midst of battle, however, is fully equipped, having put on his armor with the expectation of what is to come.

Because we have foresight, and the Spirit of God has given us insight as to the reality of battle, we do not dawdle or delay, we do not put off or ignore, we put on the armor of light, and prepare ourselves for battle as a good and faithful soldier ought.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

A Call To Arms Part 8


When it comes to weapons, there are weapons of defense, weapons of attack, and weapons that in a pinch can pull double duty and be used both for attack as well as for defense. The believer’s arsenal of weapons is clearly itemized within God’s Word, and this is done so we can go through the checklist, inventory our gear, see if anything is missing, and if we are, in fact, ready for battle.

Although the notion of preparedness has fallen out of favor in recent times, like so many other practical and necessary virtues, one understands the true importance of preparedness only when it’s too late.

If I realize my shield is rusty and my blade is dull only as I take my stand on the battlefield, it is likely too late to do anything about it. In the event that we did not do our utmost to prepare for the eventuality of battle, even before the battle begins, the enemy has a distinct advantage because of our failure to assign the correct level of importance to the task of making sure our armor and our weapons are as they ought to be.

Nowadays Christians seem to be suffering defeat at the hands of the enemy more than at any other time in history not because the enemy has gotten better at what he does, but because the average believer has grown more slothful, more indifferent, and more concerned with the affairs of this life rather than the life to come.

The devil is still the devil, but the caliber of soldier has consistently decreased over the years to what is now a woeful, unacceptable level.

We play church, we play soldier, we play at being saved and at obeying God’s word, then wonder to ourselves why defeat seems to be a constant, like an ever present shadow, never far, and always in sight.

There was a time when believers were encouraged to spend time with God in prayer, when they were encouraged to read the Word of God and learn to hear His voice rather than buy the latest and greatest teaching series on how positivity can transform your life, or how you can spice up your love life the Christian way.

Incrementally but consistently we’ve made the Christian walk about ourselves rather than about servitude toward God, and every teaching seems to be focused on how we can better enjoy this present life, and exploit God’s love for us by continually demanding material excess.

It is a sad and tragic thing when an entire generation goes from knowing God on a personal and intimate level, to only knowing men who know God and speaking of them in hushed and reverent tones as though they were something more than mere men because they have a relationship with the Father.

It is in the fact that we see things such as prophecy, dreams, visions, revelation, gifts of healing, discernment, tongues or interpretation of tongues as special or rare that we can know just how off track the church has gotten, and how ill prepared we are when it comes to the spiritual aspect of our existence.

Such things ought not to be the exception within the house of God!

The power of the Holy Spirit, the gifts of the Holy Spirit, the leading and guidance of God, all these things ought to be a given for believers, for fellowships, for congregations, and for all who name the name of Christ.

If the biggest trick the devil ever pulled was to convince the world he didn’t exist, the second biggest trick he ever pulled was to convince the church that it is powerless, and absent of authority.

We have adopted and embraced this victim mentality, wherein ‘the devil made me do it’ becomes our go to motto, and rather than stand and do all to stand, we accept defeat as a given, as something we are meant to experience as sons and daughters of God.

It is a lie! We are not meant to suffer defeat at the hands of the enemy. We are no meant to be vanquished by the darkness. We are meant to overcome evil, we are meant to overcome the darkness, we are meant to fight against principalities and powers and the rulers of the darkness of this age.

We suffer defeat at the hands of the enemy because we’ve talked ourselves into believing that we can be defeated. Rather than stand, we justify cowardice by telling ourselves there’s nothing sinful in going along to get along, and rather than fight we do our utmost to be inoffensive to the enemy, being silent when we ought to speak, and being static when we ought to act.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

A Call To Arms Part 7


A soldier without weapons is a soldier at a disadvantage. Even though the movies insist that one man with a toothpick, a shoelace, and a compass can take on an entire army on foreign soil without knowing the terrain, between the guy with the knife and the guy with the gun the guy with the gun usually wins.

If two men of equal proficiency only differed in the weapons at their disposal, then logic would dictate the man who was better equipped, who had access to more weapons, would win out over the one who was not.

Meeting the enemy on the battlefield is a hard enough task when we are fully equipped, and have every weapon at our disposal in our arsenal. Even then the devil gets in a few blows, and even manages to fell some, men who we thought undefeatable, and beyond the enemy’s reach. This often happens if the individual in question is either distracted or not sufficiently equipped for the task at hand.

As I’ve said before, the easiest way to get one’s clock thoroughly cleaned is to underestimate one’s enemy, and go into battle unprepared, unfocused, and ill equipped.

We cannot take anything for granted in battle. No soldier ignores the fundamentals of making sure his gear is clean, and that everything is working as it ought, because he knows his life depends on whether his gun will fire, or his sword will cut.

We must make it a priority to not only make certain we have all the weapons we can get our hands on in our possession, we must also make certain they are ready for warfare when the time comes.

I have quite a few friends who are into guns, who own guns and enjoy shooting them at the range or to go hunting, and to the last every man is meticulous about cleaning his weapon after use, making sure everything is as it ought to be for the next time he goes out shooting or hunting.

This notion of always being ready, of always having sharpened swords and battle ready armor must be as second nature to us, an extension of who we are, and what we are.

A soldier never stops being a soldier, nor should a Christian ever stop being a Christian regardless of his surroundings, or the people he comes in contact with.

I see a man in uniform and I know he is Navy, Army, Marine, or Air Force based on the aforementioned uniform. Men should likewise be able to tell we are Christians by our countenance, our conduct, our speech, our decisions and our behavior.

No, it’s not about works, it’s about mirroring Jesus. It is not about earning our salvation, but rather about manifesting the fruit salvation ought to have wrought in us upon encountering the Christ.

Words without action are meaningless. I can tell my wife I love her, but if my every action contradicts my proclamation, she will realize something is amiss. She will see that all I am doing is saying some word which have no meaning because there is no action undergirding them.

Many today say they love Jesus, then never do a thing to show that love. They have no desire to spend time with Him, they have no desire to serve Him, they have no desire to obey Him, they have no desire to know Him, and yet, they proclaim, and vociferously so that they belong to Him. Many today say they are soldiers for the cause of Christ, and never follow through in defending the selfsame Christ for whom they said they were a soldier.

It is because they follow through with action that some men are counted to be men of their word, and not simply because they spoke the words.

I know men who are men of their word, and I know blowhards who talk a big game but never follow through with anything. I know men who say little and do much, and I also know men who say much and do little.

It’s not about the words, it’s about the action, it’s not the theory, it’s the practical application of faith and salvation that we must endeavor to live out daily.

The same is true for those who consider themselves soldiers for Christ. There is a marked difference between a man who says and a man who does, and the man who does usually doesn’t say so much. The man who does knows the hardships of battle, he knows the draining effects it has on one’s vitality, and he knows there is no glory in war but only in victory, and as such does all he can to stand victorious when the dust has settled and the departed have been counted.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankfulness


Thankfulness is a choice. We either choose to be thankful for the great many things we take for granted every day we are upon this earth, or we constantly feel entitled to more, thereby stirring disquiet in our hearts and never having peace.

Although we have much to be thankful for, thankfulness seems to be in short supply, and though we expect thanklessness from those of the world, it is a sad thing to see it among the children of God as well.

It is because many have fallen into the snare of the enemy, and have come to believe that coming to Jesus means never needing anything ever again, that so many believers are beside themselves when trials come their way, or unexpected things shatter the fantasy that Christians don’t suffer.

What being a believer means is that God the Father will be with us through our trials not that He will cause us to circumvent them. When we understand this simple truth, our lives will be forever changed, and the sporadic thankfulness we express will become a daily, ongoing practice.

Today I am thankful for many things. I am thankful for a loving wife, I am thankful for the healthy baby growing in her womb, (yep, I’m going to be a dad, scariest most wonderful news I’ve received in my entire life), I am thankful for my brothers and sisters in Christ, I am thankful for God’s faithfulness, I am thankful for God’s mercy, I am thankful for God’s love, I am thankful for God’s grace, and yes, I’m even thankful for the trials which serve to mold me and fashion me into that which God desires me to become.

Choose to be thankful. Choose to be thankful not only this day, but every day you are given to walk upon this earth, to see a sunrise, to hear a birdsong, to hug the person next to you, to read a bedtime story to your child, to hold the hand of your parent, to show kindness to a stranger, to extend mercy, to show grace, and to be like Jesus.

We have much to be thankful for.

Oh yeah, did I mention I’m going to be a dad?

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Radio Silent

As there always seems to be, I have a good reason for why I haven't posted anything in the past few days and the reason is my elbow. It's strange how little things, things that we take for granted and seem insignificant in the great scheme of things can stop us in our tracks,  and make it impossible for us to do anything productive.

A day after returning from Michigan my elbow started bothering me a bit. It was nothing major, pain I am used to, so I ignored it going about my daily routine. The next morning, however, I couldn't ignore it anymore because I couldn't bend it, and when I tried the pain was similar to the gout pain I used to have before cleaning up my diet.

It had also swollen overnight, and now, not only couldn't I bend my elbow, it even hurt trying to move my fingers. I was told icing it was the best thing I could do next to simply resting it and not doing the things I normally do.

It has finally subsided, although not all the way, but I'm hoping to get back to writing sometime this week as I miss it terribly.

And so, this is why I've been radio silent for the past few days.

Yes, we all go through trials. Even preachers, and evangelists, and whatever title men might go by nowadays,  we are all subject to the continual deterioration of our flesh. We're all human, we all hurt, but our Father carries us through. This above all else is the singular reason I am thankful, even though in my body I am in pain.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Monday, November 18, 2013

A Call to Arms Part 6


The life of a soldier is not an easy one. The Word of God forewarns us that if we desire to be soldiers of Jesus Christ, we will have to endure hardships, we will have to be molded, matured, refined, trained, and battle tested, because all these are necessary steps to making a true soldier.

Not only does a pretend soldier pose a danger to their own person, because they are untrained, ill equipped, and likely fearful of the enemy’s advances, the pretend solder is a danger to those around him as well. Much of the time a pretend soldier serves as a distraction for the true soldiers, because what they are doing is so out of step with what ought to be done, that even the most seasoned warrior is surprised by their actions.

Yes, I know, we like to tell each other God is doing something new all the time, so it’s perfectly fine if some knucklehead is kicking cancer patients in the stomach, but in reality, such individuals are a distraction, and often times a source of shame for the household of faith because of their actions.

 It’s one thing to suffer for righteousness’ sake, it’s quite another to suffer due to the actions of some conman which the world automatically associates with you because he calls himself a Christian just as you do.

The Bible tells us our God changes not. He remains the same in perpetuity, and if something worked perfectly well a thousand years, a hundred years, or a day ago, God is wise enough not to mess with it, or try to improve upon it. How can one improve upon perfection? How can one improve upon something God Himself created and put together?  

Yes, men take it upon themselves to try and help God, to improve the ways and means by which we reach out to the lost, or attract the world to the household of faith, but these are gimmicks God neither sanctioned nor approved. We do these things of our own volition, driven by our own vanity, unimpeded in our actions by the reality that God is not in it.

It is important to go through basic training, it is important to be taught war, it is important to know how to wield the weapons in your arsenal, so that when war does come, you are prepared, you are ready, and rather than flee from before the enemy, you will advance against him as a true warrior ought.

God even allowed certain enemies of Israel to remain in the olden days, simply so the children of Israel might be taught war.

Judges 3:1-3, “Now these are the nations which the Lord left, that He might test Israel by them, that is, all who had not known any of the wars in Canaan (this was only so that the generations of the children of Israel might be taught to know war, at least those who had not formerly known it), namely, five lords of the Philistines, all the Canaanites, the Sidonians, and the Hivites, who dwelt in Mount Lebanon, from Mount Ball Hermon to the entrance of Hamath.”

We cannot shy away from battle, nor can we shy away from the training implicit in every soldier’s life, so that he might be able to not only defend himself, but advance into enemy territory and vanquish him.

God did not want His people to forget what war was like, nor did he want them to forget what being a soldier implied, so He allowed certain nations to remain for this specific reason.

Nowadays we’ve come to believe that just because our fathers knew spiritual warfare, it is enough. Since they knew it, in our mind there is no need for us to know it, not realizing that every generation and every individual must stand on the battle field, and on that day all that will matter is whether or not you’ve learned warfare, or just pretended at it.

History is rife with individuals who counted on their pedigree to see them through, only to find themselves fleeing from before their enemy in fear.

By the same token history is also rife with individuals who overestimated their skills, who thought themselves superior soldiers to the point of disregarding the orders of their commanding officers.

Nowadays we are seeing untold numbers of believers disregarding the direct orders of their General, thinking themselves wiser, and more astute than He. Though they’ve never been in battle, though they’ve never seen a skirmish, though most have never even held a sword, or strapped on a breastplate, they are certain of their intellectual superiority only to become as fools when the consequences of their shortsightedness come to fruition.

Whenever we utter the words ‘I think’ and do so knowing full well that what we are thinking contradicts what the Bible clearly says, we are ourselves become the shortsighted fools I speak of.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Speaking in Michigan

This Sunday we will be in Reed City, Michigan for a morning and evening service. They are long time friends, so it should be a good time in the Lord.
The time and address are as follows:

Sunday Nov 17, 2013 at 10:00 am 6:00 pm 
Bethel Church
515 W Lincoln ST
Reed City, MI 49677 
For more information contact Pastor Ed Wanner: 231-510-4443 

With love in Christ, 
Michael Boldea Jr. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

A Call to Arms Part 5


It is only when we minimize what our enemy’s ultimate intent is, and how single minded he is about attaining his objective that we become indifferent and even flippant about his minions and what they are doing within the household of faith.

The devil isn’t out to bruise you, or skin your knee, or call you nasty names, the devil is out to kill you, and every single individual who does his bidding, every single one roaming about already marked for condemnation, has the selfsame objective in mind.

Men teach heresy for the singular purpose of destroying other men spiritually!

In the end that is the root of every false teaching, false doctrine, and false interpretation. The devil knows the battle he is in, but sadly much of the church does not. The devil knows the stakes of this battle, but sadly the church seems to have forgotten, thinking that somehow if they are trampled underfoot, if they are overcome rather than overcomers, they’ll just end up in a less glitzy part of heaven, but heaven nevertheless.

After outlining a pretty grim picture of the end times, speaking of wars, rumors of wars, and how we would be hated by all nations for His name’s sake, Jesus went on to speak some heavy, heavy words for every believer who thinks they can wing it, or somehow get through what’s coming without being fully equipped, fully trained, and fully sold out for Christ.

Matthew 24:13, “But he who endures to the end shall be saved.”

Jesus didn’t say ‘he who tries, attempts, or thinks they can endure to the end,’ Jesus said, ‘he who endures to the end!’

Valiant efforts won’t cut it, nor will halfhearted attempts at enduring. If we believe the words of Jesus – and we have no reason to doubt Him – then only he who endures to the end shall be saved!

The whole point of this teaching series is to prepare you spiritually so you may endure to the end.

As such, feelings, emotions, or opinions regarding myself are irrelevant to me, because the purpose of this teaching compels me to be less than gentle in my approach, and for those who are not yet ready, my words may seem downright offensive.

If you are offended, so be it! The stakes are too high, and the outcome of this battle too important for me to try and sugarcoat this in any way in an attempt to spare feelings.

Once we understand the truth of the battle we find ourselves in, once we understand we are facing an enemy who takes no prisoners, then we will realize just how irrelevant our feelings or bruised egos are.

God doesn’t coddle soldiers, and we’re too old to be infants!

The lateness of the hour is evident to one and all, perhaps with the exception of the church, which is still under the misconception that when the Word tells believers to put on the whole armor of God, somehow it doesn’t apply to them but to someone else.

As with any battle, there are rules and principles governing the battle we are currently engaged in, and the first of these has to do more with us as individuals, than it does with the battle itself.

It is a principle which governs both physical and spiritual warfare, and that is total commitment to the objective at hand.

If you plan on being a duplicitous soldier with a divided heart, you might as well just stay off the battlefield altogether. If you plan on obeying only those orders which suit you, then you might as well just walk away now.

There can be no half-hearted commitment when it comes to this battle, just as there cannot be half-hearted commitment when it comes to battles in the physical.

You begin a battle with the intent of winning, of overcoming, and vanquishing your enemy. You know that which you are fighting for. The purpose is clear, the mission is clear, and the enemy before you has made himself known.

We cannot possess divided loyalties and still hope to be victorious in battle. We cannot possess divided loyalties and still hope to overcome the enemy. I guarantee you, the enemy’s loyalties are not divided, his purposes are not blurred, and his intent is not swayed.

Nehemiah 4:14, “And I looked, and arose and said to the nobles, to the leaders, and to the rest of the people, ‘Do not be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, great and awesome, and fight for your brethren, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your houses.’”

Know what you’re fighting for! Know why you’re fighting the fight you are fighting! And know that the Lord is with you if you are with Him!

Do not be afraid, stand firm, and be committed to defending the truth and righteousness of God.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

A Call to Arms Part 4


1 Timothy 6:12, “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”

So what motivates you? What promise? What reward? What prize motivates you to the point of forfeiting this present life and all its baubles, for the reality of battle day in and day out?

This, in the end is what it must come down to. If we are soldiers of the cross, if we are warriors for Christ, if we are the army of God, then the only thing we must know, the only thing we can know is battle.

We’ve been lied to. Repeatedly, consistently, unashamedly, the household of faith has been lied to! We’ve been told by grinning fools that all one need do in order to obtain eternal life is be a good person, consider ourselves spiritual, try not to do bad things, don’t swear so much anymore, and of course, give ten percent of our money to the selfsame grinning men making these assertions.

As such, the notion of fighting the good fight has been lost from the collective hearts and minds of the church, and whenever the great majority hears of such a thing they are taken aback, because the notion of battle would actually mean that they exert themselves, break a sweat, put down the TV clicker, or do something out of their comfort zone.

The church has grown lazy, and we love to have it so. There is nothing required of us except for the few bucks we put in the offering basket, and we love the spiritual leaders who encourage our spiritual slothfulness, because they get us; they understand us, and as long as they don’t rock the boat, they’re alright by us.

The only problem with this scenario is that one need fight the good fight in order to lay hold of eternal life, and in the end that is the motivation, that is the driving force of why we choose to enroll in God’s army and do battle against the enemy.

Eternal life! The promise, the prize, the reward for your faithfulness, exertion, sweat, blood, tears, prayers, self-discipline, and everything else a life in Christ entails, is eternal life.

It is not an earthly reward, it is not some material thing that rusts and loses luster with time; it is eternal life with God, in His kingdom, forever.

Revelation 3:21, “To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.”

Not only does inheriting eternal life require we fight the good fight, it stipulates we must win the battle, we must overcome, for to him who overcomes will Christ grant to sit with Him on His throne.

Men can twist it however they want, they can give their spin, and put their personal interpretation on it insisting that Jesus didn’t really say what He in fact said, but the verse is there, plainly written so even the plainest of men can understand it. The honor to sit with Christ on His throne is reserved for those who overcome.

It is not our duty to get along with the devil, It is not our duty to make peace with the enemy, it is not our duty to try and explain away God’s righteousness and holiness, it is our duty to defend the Gospel, if need be with our lives, and stand for truth even if we happen to be the only one standing before a sea of men.

Jude 1:3, “Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.”

When we are told to contend, we are in fact told to struggle, and by doing so surmount any difficulty or danger. When we are told to contend earnestly, we are in fact told to contend with zeal, steadfastness, and unwavering commitment.

Speak of these things to some in the church and they’ll start screaming ‘works’ as though their hair was on fire, but it’s not me they must contend with, it is the Word of God.

It is our duty to fight, to contend, to do battle, every time a heresy arises, every time apostasy arises, every time false teachers emerge, and the truth of God is attacked.

Jude 1:4, “For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.”

So the next time we decide to give one of these men a pass, or give them the benefit of the doubt, or defend what they said because we like their bubbling personality, just so we’re clear, the Word calls them ungodly men, and men who were long ago marked out for this condemnation.

What is their primary characteristic? Well, turning the grace of God into licentiousness is a good indicator, as is denying the singularity of Jesus, the Divinity of Jesus, the Lordship of Jesus, and the Kingship of Jesus.

I’ll let you figure out who they are on your own!

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Speaking Schedule for This Week!


Hitting the ground running is something I’ve become accustomed to doing, so this weekend I travel to Indiana for one meeting, then back to Wisconsin for another meeting the following night.

If you can attend please do, if not, please keep us in your prayers as we travel.  

Friday Nov 8, 2013 at 7:00 pm
Church of Prophecy
404 N Pointe Blvd
Elkhart, Indiana 46514
for more information contact Gary Rogel: 574-536-5681
 

Saturday Nov 9, 2013 at 6:30 pm
Living Waters Assembly Of God Church
W5696 Schmidt Road
Elkhorn, WI 53121
for more information contact Pastor Kurt Verhoeven: 262-903-4568

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

A Call to Arms Part 3


It is because the household of faith has been infiltrated, and because we allowed the servants of darkness to teach that the war has been canceled and we are no longer in need of our weapons, that we now find ourselves outnumbered, with the enemy having successfully branched out and overtaken key positions.

We did not love the truth enough to defend it, we did not love the truth enough to fight for it, nor did we love the truth enough to lay our lives down as the Word tells us we ought. We reveled in mediocrity, washed our hands in doubt, and clothes ourselves in indifference thinking ourselves spiritually superior for even contemplating the notion of God.

The half measure gospel has become the doctrine of the land, and the high priests of this gospel are reaping their rewards both in possessions, positions, and accolades from the world.

Just as not every citizen of a country is necessarily a soldier of the selfsame, sadly, not every Christian is a soldier in the army of God, but make no mistake, there are still soldiers about.

Just as nations have traitors, so does the household of faith, but the difference between the nations and the church is that the nations prosecute their traitors while the church gives theirs a pass, siting the benefit of the doubt, because they just don’t want the hassle, or Lord forbid to be thought of as intolerant or legalistic.

We are in the mess we are in because we looked the other way while sin ran amok, justified spiritually withered and dried individuals just because they looked good on camera, and came to believe that we could widen the path all on our own without any consequence or negative aftereffect.

As far as being a soldier in the army of God is concerned, just as going to the army surplus store and buying a uniform and some medals doesn’t make someone a true soldier, neither does attending a two day workshop make one a spiritual warrior.

The sad reality is that many individuals attempt to enlist in the army of God for the benefits, but very few want to put in the time and energy to go through the requisite training and learn what it really means to be a warrior for Christ, one whom the enemy identifies as a real and present threat, rather than some caricatures kicking a dummy around the altar talking about how they have the devil under their feet.

The enemy is more than happy to leave ignorant believers to their ignorance, because as long as he can keep them lethargic and sleeping, as long as he can distract them and keep them focused on other things, they will not be of any threat to him or his plans.

I already know I’m going to get hate mail for this series, I already know I’m going to be called unloving, uncaring, unsympathetic, insensitive, intolerant, and a dozen other different names simply because I’m pointing to the elephant in the room that everyone else is seeing but no one is willing to acknowledge.

We can’t blame it all on the devil. The devil did what the devil does. He saw an opportunity, saw a chink in the armor, and saw a means by which to accelerate and achieve his plans and he took it.

It is the watchman that stopped watching, the preacher that stopped preaching, the evangelist that stopped evangelizing, because, like little children they got distracted by the baubles and the shiny things, or concluded that they loved the world more than the truth so why not pursue it with abandon.

Thankfully, I don’t have a reputation to protect, or a following to impress, or a demographic to win over to my side, so I can still tell you the truth whether it hurts or soothes. That is what soldiers do. They do the work, they run into the battle, they put on their armor, and they stand for what they know they ought to stand for, sometimes knowing full well that it’s only a matter of time before they are either injured or killed.

In order to be willing to lay your life down, in order to consciously make the choice to forfeit your dreams, aspirations, and expectations, you must know and vividly so, the driving force or motivation behind this decision.

We are either involved or committed. We are either aware of the reality that once we’ve enlisted in God’s army we are no longer our own and as such must obey Him without equivocation, or we pretend at soldiering until that fateful day when the enemy stands before us grinning and merciless, and we with no defense to speak of, staring at an end that was a foregone conclusion the instant we decided to treat the things of God lightly.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A Call to Arms Part 2


Battle presupposes many things, but certain ones are essential. Among the essentials of any conflict are armies, arms, tactics, strategy, and the knowledge of one’s enemies. If any of these essentials is missing, one’s loss of the battle is ensured even before the first blow is struck. Without having the right soldiers, the right arms, the right strategy and a fundamental understanding of one’s enemy, one is inhibited and stunted in their ability to fight the fight in such a manner that their victory is certain.

Brutal and coldhearted as it may seem, one need only give a passing glance to the current church to realize that though we might call ourselves an army, we are weaponless, absent of strategy, ignorant of tactics, and woefully unaware of our enemy, what he can do, and the lengths he will go to in any conflict.

A soldier’s ignorance of his weapons on the battlefield will almost always ensure his demise. If he stands face to face against his enemy and does not know how to wield his sword, raise his shield, or have a passing knowledge of all the weapons in his arsenal, that moment of hesitation, the fumbling with one’s scabbard, the overreach of one’s sword, the wrong placement of one’s shield, and the enemy will strike the mortal blow.

By the same token, a soldier who does not know the tactics of his enemy, or know how to defend against them is at a serious disadvantage on the battlefield. We are warned, and forthrightly so in God’s word not to be ignorant of the devil’s devices. The reason this warning is found within the pages of scripture is because once we are aware of the devil’s devices, we will naturally begin to take steps to protect ourselves against them, and guard our hearts against their influences.

Your weakness, whatever that might be, is the device the enemy most often employs to try to derail you and vanquish you spiritually. Knowing the fact that the enemy employs your weakness against you, and knowing yourself well enough to know your own weakness, you are especially sensitive to any situation or circumstance in which this weakness can be exploited.

If alcohol is your weakness, then perhaps bars are not the best place for you to hang out. If lust is your weakness, then perhaps watching movies with innuendo and gratuitous nudity in them is not the best way to pass your time. You know your weakness, guard against it and one of the enemy’s greatest weapons against you will have been neutralized.

As Paul so poetically puts it, we ought to be aware of the devil’s devices lest he get an advantage, or outwit us. Paul understood the battle and what it meant. He knew that it was not a battle for something as fleeting as statehood or nationality, but for one’s eternal soul and where it would spend eternity. Throughout the New Testament we are warned to be on guard, to be alert, to watch, to be aware, to prepare, to put on our armor, because the ramifications of this war we wage are greater than the ramifications of any physical war.

Not only are we repeatedly warned to prepare for battle, there are passages within God’s Word which describe it, informing us that in the unseen realm, the whole of the universe is at war.

Revelation 12:7-8, “And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon’ and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer.”

Revelation 13:7, “And it was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation.”

From what we read in God’s Word there are three distinct groupings in this ongoing war. First, there is the army of heaven, the heavenly host, or the army of the Lord, second, there the armies of darkness which include the devil, his angels, principalities, and powers, and third there is mankind, which is itself divided into two camps, the saints, the righteous, and the godless or unrighteous.

Throughout this study, one which thus far is proving to be somewhat ambitious, we will determine what the role of the saints is in this war, what the weapons of our warfare are, and how it is we can take the fight to the enemy, actually go on the offensive, and take back the ground we’ve lost over time.

As I see it, every believer must choose one of two options: they can either learn the weapons in their arsenal, and what it is to do battle, and to do spiritual warfare, or they can be fodder like so many clueless souls walking about vanquished, beaten, and imprisoned while ignorant of the fact they were at war to begin with.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

A Call to Arms Part 1


Men wage war for various reasons at various times. While some are compelled by patriotism or religious beliefs, others still are driven by ambition or lust for power. Whatever the underlying reason for war, it is powerful enough to cause an individual to risk their life for it.

In any battle, in any war, the possible loss of one’s life is implied. There has never been a war waged without casualties, and every individual who enlists does so with the full knowledge that it may very well mean their life.

Physical war is bloody, brutal, and taxing in every way possible. What believers seem to have forgotten over the years is that spiritual warfare is just as brutal, just as taxing, and just as ruthless as any war in the physical. Spiritual warfare also carries greater far reaching consequences than war in the natural does, because the consequences of spiritual warfare are eternal in their scope.

Wherever I happen to be on any given Sunday it seems I hear more about the victory party after the war, than I do about the war itself anymore. Preachers don’t like to preach on spiritual warfare, parishioners don’t like to hear about spiritual warfare, and so we focus on the hereafter, on that moment beyond time when the last sword has been swung and the last blow has been struck, utterly failing to prepare or even make the individual aware of the war they are currently embroiled in.

If you call yourself a son or daughter of God, then you are at war. Since the fact that you are already at war is a foregone reality and you have no say in the matter, would it not be wise and prudent to learn all you can about your enemy and about the weapons you have at your disposal?

Would it not be wisdom itself to learn how we can defend ourselves, and even go on the offensive against an enemy who has already made it perfectly clear that he will take no prisoners?

Even though the spectator stands are overflowing and the warriors on the field of battle are decreasing in number at an alarming rate, we who remain cannot give up the fight. We cannot lay down our arms, we cannot take off our armor, we cannot surrender to the enemy, for if we do we will be counted among the rebellious and disobedient, those who ought to have known what it is to stand, to fight, and to overcome an enemy who fears our General, and who has given us the privilege and right to walk in His authority.

Revelation 12:10-11, “Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, ‘Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.”

We read these words and somehow they sound hollow to our ears. We read these words and do not see ourselves in the role of those who did not love their lives to the death, those who overcame the devil by the blood of the Lamb and the power of their testimony. We always think it is referring to another, to someone else, to a different group of believers, a different generation, or a different continent perhaps.

We cannot fail to see the simple profundity of these verses. The only means by which this group of overcomers was identified is that they were brethren, and they knew the weapons of their warfare, they knew the power of the blood of the Lamb, and they, to the last, forfeited their lives for the great high calling of being a follower of Jesus.

If battle finds us unprepared, if the enemy finds us defenseless, if we find ourselves standing on the battlefield with no weapons of either defense or offense, know that our ill preparedness was not God’s fault but our own. We have been warned and repeatedly so to prepare, to put on our armor, to know how to wield the power granted to us by  the blood of the Lamb, and if we have failed to do these things, or believed that they somehow did not pertain to us, we have no one to blame but ourselves.

Ephesians 6:10-13, “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.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The State of Affairs


By the time I turned sixteen I had catapulted past three hundred and fifty pounds. It is not something I am proud of, nor is it something I am ashamed of, it’s just the way it was. Somewhere deep within myself, where the rational part of man’s intellect spends its waking hours, I knew I was getting bigger with each passing season, but for the longest time I was not ready to confront it, face it, and most difficult of all, acknowledge my own culpability in the matter.

At first I tried blaming my mother, accusing her of shrinking my clothes, then the mirror for being warped, and this went on for a while until finally I had the epiphany of all epiphanies on flight to Canada wherein I thought I was having a heart attack.

Sometimes we come to our senses of our own volition, we come to our senses willingly and without being prodded or influenced, and other times we have to be smacked across the face and awoken from our slumber. Whether willfully or by force, eventually we all have to come to terms with the reality in which we are living, and either choose to continue ignoring it, or do something about it.

Eventually I had to come to terms with the fact that I’d gotten too big. I knew it wasn’t my mother shrinking my clothes, or some insidious secret society exchanging my clothes for smaller sizes while I was at school, it was me. I was eating too much, not getting enough exercise, and if I continued down the road I was on I’d be another statistic, and nothing more. I had to acknowledge to myself, and come to terms with the reality that I was too heavy, and I needed to do something about it. That was just the first step.

Coming to terms with something is only half of the equation. It is simultaneously the hardest and easiest step one will have to go through in order to change their predicament, whatever that predicament might happen to be.

Upon coming to terms with the fact that I’d gotten too big, I then had to take the next step and decide to do something about it. I joined a gym, started eating less food that came out of boxes and more food that came from trees, or from the earth, and I dropped one hundred pounds in about five months.

Although I am by no means thin, I never plan on becoming a male model or wearing skinny jeans, so I don’t have to be. I am, however, much smaller than I used to be, and this would not have happened if first, I had not admitted I had a problem, and second, if I had not taken steps to remedying the problem I was confronted with.

The worst issues to acknowledge are the ones we are guilty of perpetrating upon ourselves. There is always that inference when it comes to such issues, that we are to blame for where we are due to the choices we made in getting there. Most individuals would rather just ignore the problem than be confronted with their own culpability in any given matter, especially if the matter in question is something as disastrous as the situation we currently find ourselves in as a nation.

Although I haven’t had my laptop during these handful of days, I have been doing allot of reading. It seems everyone is beginning to see we have a serious and immediate problem, but too few are willing to take the next step and actually do something to remedy it.

As long as we are unwilling to change anything, as long as we are unwilling to make any sacrifices, then nothing will change. We can wish it, hope it, think about it, talk about it, sing about it, but until we actively go about doing what is necessary to remedy a thing, that thing will always remain the same.

To continue discussing the current state of affairs would be tantamount to beating a dead horse, and so, my next post will be the beginning of a brand new, multi part teaching entitled ‘A Call to Arms’.

The sad reality is that even now, with all that’s been happening, with all the signs we are seeing, with all the steps we’ve taken as a nation toward the outright persecution of the saints, too few by far are willing to hear, listen, or receive the truth.

As yet we are still clinging to the childish notions of positive attitudes and inspirational affirmations, believing that wishful thinking and the embracing of depravity will deter the enemy from his ultimate goal.
 
How childish we have become in our thinking, and how harmless we believe our enemy to be.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.