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Do I Have to Attend Church to be a Christian?

My immediate answer to my title question is: NO!

I'm certain some pastors will not agree with my answer, but Biblical speaking I can find no New Testament (Epistles) admonition that clearly states that it is mandatory for a New Covenant Believer to attend a church service every Sunday morning at 10:00 a.m. 

However, the New Covenant instills the thought that those of us who are followers of Christ are the Church.  We do not attend church, we are the Church!  See the difference?

Yet, I find great joy in attending church every Sunday morning and ever Wednesday night.  I have to admit that attending our church, New Covenant Fellowship in Inverness, FL is not a difficult thing to do.  I feel that it is a value added to my week and I look forward to gathering with like minded Believers.  I actually gain strength from attending our church Sunday mornings!

Back in the day, I recall us praying every morning before school classes would begin.  Granted they were generic prayers, yet we prayed. We did this in conjunction with the Pledge of Allegiance.  I can recall my dad making certain his car was filled with gas every Saturday morning because you couldn't find a gas station open on Sundays.  The same thing goes with food, no store were open on Sundays.  Some eventually opened at noon, but prior to that good luck on buying a loaf of bread!  The local pastor's associations would meet with school administrators on planning the school schedules.  Never would a school schedule an event for a Wednesday night as it was prayer meeting night for churches all over town! I also remember my parents NEVER locking their car doors.  Matter of fact we never locked our house doors.  None of our family carried house keys because we didn't need them!  So, here is something to think about....Not only do we lock our homes today but we all have alarm systems!  You can say what you want, but life was much simpler 60 years ago and safer too!  Maybe all of the praying we did in school and attending church like we did had a positive effect on society, something that we are lacking today!

So, do we have to attend church to be a Christian?  No!  But....If we do, we will be far better off by it!  One caveat here would be...Do not attend a legalistic, religious church as the harm that will cause you far out weighs any good!  I would suggest that you find a church that totally understand and teaches New Covenant life!  And....If you live within an hours drive of Inverness, FL I could give you a suggestion on which church to attend!  lol

Grace and peace!


Now Its Time For America to Heal!

Last night, November 8, 2016, we Americans elected a new President of the United States.  The results of this morning are: 50% of us are thrilled and 50% of us are angry!  The question that might be asked is, "Is "it" over or has "it" just begun?" The "it" I'm speaking of is the huge divide that is strangling our nation.  To the winning side goes elation, however that elation most likely will be short lived because choosing a new POTUS does not put an end to the division that remains in the hearts of our citizens!

Several years ago I felt that I heard directly from the Lord to no longer speak of  politics.  That may sound like a simple request to some, but it was very difficult for me to do because I love politics.  I would have loved to run for Congress; I think I would have made a great Congressman or Senator!  I loved Political Science in school and I still follow politics very closely.  I certainly have my opinions and this year was no exception!  However, I choose to keep those opinions pretty much to myself, especially on social media and in my church.  I'm sure most of our church members know who I voted for but they never heard me say anything from the pulpit!  Why?  The Lord told me to not do that!  My goal throughout this difficult election process has been to lift up the King of kings and the Lord of lords, period!

So now we are faced with a new President that half of our country hates. Some commentators said last night that with a Congress and Senate and the President of the same party that gridlock will vanish.  I say it won't because that gridlock is still rock solid in the hearts of our citizens! 

Therefore I am encouraging the Church to minister grace like never before during these next four years!  This very well could be the Church's "Finest Hour!"  It will be so if we don't become hard, judgmental and legalistic!  But if we, the Church, share God's true grace with our neighbors, slowly but surely the gridlock will end!  The bottom line Church is to share Christ's love with those who do not see eye to eye with us, or we with them!  Love, God's true love, is the only hope for America!

Here is what Paul says about all of this:

2 Corinthians 5:19-21 (NLT)

19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. 20 So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” 21 For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.

Do you see that?  The message of the Church is one of "reconciliation!"  There can be no gridlock in a message like that!  Therefore my message to all Democrats and Republicans and even Independents is simple.  Based upon God's unending love for all mankind and the finished works of His Son I say to all, "Come back to God!"  Forget the politics!  Telling people this is a whole lot more fun and I no longer need to swallow anti-acid nightly before bed!

Grace and peace!


Are You Sick? Don't Be Condemned!

First, allow me to say that I DO believe in miracles and the healing power of God!  I have witnessed just too many of them over the years, both in those I have ministered to and myself, to deny them or to say that God no longer heals the sick!  I hope you understand this!

However, as a former charismatic I have witnessed much false teaching over the years that has brought those seeking a miracle for their body into a state of condemnation. Recently someone told a member of our church that the reason people are sick in our church is because there is not enough teaching on healing!  Of course I totally reject this as the message of our church, New Covenant Grace Fellowship in Inverness, FL is totally centered on Christ and His ministry to us; body, soul and spirit! Talk about a harvest field for miracles!  In our church just about anything can and does happen!  However, the one thing that we do reject is any teaching that can lead people into condemnation!  Please remember, anytime we try to apply a law to our lives, whether it is the Old Covenant Law of Moses or a law that we make up our selves that might make us think that we are pleasing God more by following it, the only thing that will eventually follow is condemnation!

Here is one of the most important verses found in the Bible, Romans 8: 1 (NLT): "So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.Here is how this verse applies to what I'm writing....If you are presently going through some physical, health issues and you are seeking God for your healing, that is a good thing!  However, if you are trying to fit some type of law into this healing venture then that is a bad thing!  Give up on that Bunkie as it will only lead you into condemnation! 

So you may not be quoting enough healing Bible verses, or you may not be praying enough, you may not have a totally positive confession and the list goes on and on and you still are not healed then ole Mr. Condemnation will soon knock on your door!  If only you were a better Christian then God would heal you!  This thinking and teaching is just pure trash and you must reject it!

You may or may not know of my recent bout of cancer and major surgery to correct it.  That's right, I didn't receive an instant miracle, I had to go the route of medicine.  However, there is not enough room to write of the miracles that I have received in this process.  Here is one: After 12 hours of major surgery I have experienced no pain!  I mean ZERO!  But here is the bottom line, I have not suffered even one minute with that old devil of condemnation!

You may not be the perfect Christian!  You may not be doing everything right in order to receive your healing, but the bottom line is that God does love you, 100% and it's not based on what you do or don't do!  He loves you because he is Love and He cannot do anything else!  So if you are sick and have not been healed yet, give up on the religious laws that some teachers would like to put you under and just embrace the love of God.  Watch and see what will happen!  Condemnation kills, Love heals and brings life.  That my friend is the Gospel of healing within the New Covenant!  It works every time!

One last point....so if you are never physically healed and you die as a result; wow!  Talk about the perfect healing!  More on this subject later!

Grace and peace!