4Jesus Outreach

Preaching and Teaching the Truth of God's Word.


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Simeon’s Prophecy of Messiah

In the video below, actor Doug Whitley portrays Simeon the prophet, who approached Mary and Joseph when Jesus was presented to the Lord for consecration in the Jerusalem temple. Here is Simeon’s prophecy recorded in Luke 2:22-35:

22When the time came for the purification rites required by the Law of Moses, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23(as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord”), 24and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.”c

25Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. 26It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.27Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:

29“Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss your servant in peace.

30For my eyes have seen your salvation,

31which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:

32a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel.”

33The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. 34Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”

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Portrayals of Biblical and historic figures by Doug Whitley. Doug travels the world in this full-time ministry. For bookings please contact him at: http: www.preachersofthepast.com


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God’s Healing Power

prayers-for-healingJesus once told His disciples, “Oh you of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Sometimes we can be so easily intimidated by certain illnesses and infirmities when we’re trusting that man’s opinion is the final word on the matter. The doctors may say, “This is an incurable disease,” and we think, “Oh, woe is me!”

But is anything too hard for the Lord?

Is He still the same all-powerful God who created the universe, and engineered the miraculous workings of our own human bodies? Shouldn’t we trust His word more than the incredulous opinions of others?

If you believe what cynical man has to say about divine healing you are certainly to be pitied. On the other hand, if you believe the Bible’s promises of a supernatural cure by a loving and compassionate God who can do exceeding abundantly above all we ask or think, you can be healed!

Romans 10:17 tells us that faith comes from hearing, and hearing from the word of Christ. Stop putting your faith in man and unbelieving doctors. Instead, believe in God’s healing power – for your own healing, your friends, and your family. God will never let you down if you put your trust in Him.

Below are some healing promises and affirmations that will encourage your faith. Read them every day, memorize them, and believe them with all your heart.

SEND US your prayer requests too, and let us pray and believe God together.

– Luis Josephus

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prayer 1HEALING SCRIPTURES & PRAYER AFFIRMATIONS

1 “But He [Jesus Christ] was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed [spiritually and physically].” – Isaiah 53:5

2. “Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us…” – Ephesians 3:20

3. “For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” – 2 Timothy 1:7

4. “Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” – James 5:14-16

5. “And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.” – Matthew 4:23

6. “Then Jesus said to the centurion, ‘Go your way; and as you have believed, so let it be done for you.’ And his servant was healed that same hour.” – Matthew 8:13

7. “When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick.” – Matthew 8:16

8. “O LORD [Jehova] my God, I cried out to You, And You healed me.” – Psalms 30:2

9. “Have mercy on me, O LORD, for I am weak; O LORD, heal me, for my bones are troubled.” – Psalms 6:2

10. “Bless the LORD, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies…” – Psalms 103:1-4

11. “Then one was brought to Him who was demon-possessed, blind and mute; and He healed him, so that the blind and mute man both spoke and saw.” – Matthew 12:22

12. “Then your light shall break forth like the morning, Your healing shall spring forth speedily, And your righteousness shall go before you; The glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard.” – Isaiah 58:8

13. “And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him [Jesus] and healed them all.” – Luke 6:19

14.”Come, and let us return to the LORD; For He has torn, but He will heal us; He has stricken, but He will bind us up.” – Hosea 6:1

15. “And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease.” – Hosea 6:1

16. “The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, Because the LORD has anointed Me To preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And the opening of the prison to those who are bound…” – Isaiah 61:1

17. “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.” – Matthew 14:14

18. “Heal me, O LORD, and I shall be healed; Save me, and I shall be saved, For You are my praise.” – Jeremiah 17:14

19. “For I will restore health to you And heal you of your wounds,’ says the LORD, ‘Because they called you an outcast saying: “This is Zion; No one seeks her.”‘ – Jeremiah 30:17

20. “Behold, I will bring it health and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth.” – Jeremiah 33:6

21. “Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.” – Matthew 9:35

22. “Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.” – Matthew 10:8

23. “So they departed and went through the towns, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.” – Luke 9:6

24. “Whatever city you enter, and they receive you, eat such things as are set before you. ‘And heal the sick there, and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.'” – Luke 10:8-9

25. “And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, returned, and with a loud voice glorified God.” – Luke 17:15

26. “In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.” – Revelation 22:2

27. “Now when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling; and falling down before Him [Jesus], she declared to Him in the presence of all the people the reason she had touched Him and how she was healed immediately.” – Luke 8:47

28. “And He said to her, “Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.” – Luke 8:48


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God Chooses Winners

winner

And the winner is… You!

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.  For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight. In love He predestined us for adoption to Sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will…” – Ephesians 1:3-6

Isn’t it reassuring to know that God personally chose us before He laid the foundations of this world – billions of years ago?

Most Christians will readily affirm that our salvation is by grace through faith in what Jesus the Messiah accomplished for us on the cross. They may even be able to quote Ephesians 2:8-9 from memory, and equally affirm that we are not saved by our own good works, lest anyone of us have opportunity to take credit for our own salvation. But what most believers fail to understand is the concept of God’s sovereignty in the matter of election. In theological terms it is called Predestination.

The fact is, none of us would be saved today if God Himself had not chosen us long ago to salvation. Jesus Himself validated this truth when He said, “For no one can come to me unless [God] the Father draws them to me…” (John 6:44). Both the Old and the New Testament teach that election and salvation is a sovereign work of God’s grace. God is the One who chooses us, God is the One who gives us faith to believe, God is the one who does the work of regeneration, and it is God who sustains us to the very end of our lives.

Because of my Armenian theological background, I used to have a problem with this.

I used to wrestle with the issue of salvation and man’s free will. I once believed that Free Will Theology and God’s election were incompatible. Then one day, I heard a well-known theologian explain it in a way I could understand and agree with. I realized that man could have a free will, and I could still believe in the sovereignty of God with regards to election and salvation. The answer lies in understanding God’s foreknowledge (1). The apostle Paul describes this concept in Romans 8:28-30:

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.  And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.”

Notice that Paul says that whom God foreknew He predestined and called to salvation. Since God is all knowing, He knew ahead of time who would choose to accept His free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. In other words, He could see into the future – from the foundation of this world, who would make the decision, out of their own free will, to be saved. He knew beforehand who the winners were, and who the losers were, so to speak.

Take the Lottery, for example. I don’t gamble, but I know many Christians who have a weakness for this vice. If you could know ahead of time which numbers would win and which would lose, why would you bet on the losing numbers? That’s how God’s foreknowledge works. He knew in advance that you and I would choose Jesus Christ and become His winners. And because we are the winners – and not the losers, He chose us and predestined us to justification and glorification. Our eternal security is assured, because God doesn’t pick losers, but winners.

The God of this universe chose us from the foundation of this world to be adopted into His family and become His beloved sons and daughters. He has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ Jesus! How wonderful is that?

– Luis Josephus

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1. In his omniscience and foreknowledge, God knows what the future holds both for individuals and for nations. He knows and sees everything in advance and his will is carried out in accord with his plans and purposes. In the Old Testament God’s foreknowledge is usually represented by the verb yada is the normal verb for “know.” In the New Testament the main verbs are proginosko, “to know in advance, ” and proorao, “to see what is ahead.” Foreknowledge is closely connected to election and predestination and to God’s sovereign rule of his universe. – Bakers Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology


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The Greatest Love Letter

johnny-cash-and-june-carterA letter Johnny Cash wrote to June Carter Cash in 1994 was voted the greatest love letter of all time. They were married from 1968 until June passed away in 2003. Johnny died 4 months later.

The letter reads as follows:

Happy birthday princess,

We get old and get used to each other. We think alike. We read each others minds. We know what the other wants without asking. Sometimes we irritate each other a little bit. Maybe sometimes take each other for granted.

But once in a while, like today, I meditate on it and I realize how lucky I am to share my life with the greatest woman I ever met. You still fascinate and inspire me. You influence me for the better. You’re the object of my desire, the #1 earthly reason for my existence. I love you very much. Happy birthday, princess.

Johnny

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George Müller – Man of Faith

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George Müller

In the video below, actor and preacher, Doug Whitley*, portrays George Müller (1805 -1898).

Before he received Jesus Christ who transformed his life, George Müller was a drunkard, a cheat and a most sinful man. God took him from the beer halls to the honored halls of men of great faith. Without a penny, he was able to build one of the largest and most successful childrens orphanages in Bristol, England.

During his life, he and his wife Susannah cared for over 10,024 orphans simply dependent upon God with childlike faith. – Luis Josephus

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* Doug Whitley travels the world in his ministry of portraying biblical and historical figures. For more information and bookings, visit his website at:  www.PreachersOfThePast.com


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No More Government Censorship of Our Churches

no-more-government-censorshipFree the Pulpits of America Up Again!

Since the beginning of this great nation, Americans have been committed to the First Amendment right to freedom of speech and religion. It requires that our government respect every individual’s legal right to practice their religious beliefs, speak freely of their moral convictions, operate schools and colleges, and live peacefully with others without government interference.

For over 60 years, however, the Johnson Amendment has been prohibiting free speech in our churches. Many pastors and other religious leaders have been afraid to speak biblical truth from their pulpits for fear of harassment and punishment by the government who can take away their 501(c)(3) tax exempt status.

Erik Stanley, Senior Counsel, Alliance Defending Freedom, recently remarked, “Americans don’t need a federal tax agency to be the speech police of churches or any other non-profit groups, who have a constitutionally protected freedom to decide for themselves what they want to say or not say.”

A new bill, The Free Speech Fairness Act, has been introduced by Representative Jody Hice and Senator James Lankford, that will restrict the enforcement of the Johnson Amendment and allow churches to speak freely of politics and other matters without intimidation by the IRS. Erik Stanley further commented, “By removing the threat of an IRS investigation and potential penalties based simply, for example, on what a pastor says from the pulpit, this bill brings the law into conformity with the First Amendment. This law that was enacted by Lyndon B. Johnson in 1954, and was never intended to affect churches and other non-profit groups but has been used to intimidate them ever since. The government can’t base any tax exemption on a requirement that a church or any other non-profit organization surrender a constitutionally protected freedom, including free speech.”

In recent years the Alliance Defending Freedom (http://www.adflegal.org/) has attempted to challenge the Johnson Amendment through the Pulpit Freedom Initiative, which urges church ministers to violate the statute in protest. The ADF contends that the amendment violates First Amendment rights.

During his 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump called for the repeal of the amendment. At the National Prayer Breakfast on February 2, 2017, President Trump, vowed to “totally destroy” the Johnson Amendment.

Please pray that the Free Speech Fairness Act will be approved, and the Johnson Amendment will eventually be overturned. Pray that pastors and other religious leaders will no longer be intimidated or harassed by the IRS for preaching political matters and be able to speak freely of biblical issues deemed “off limits” by the government.

– Luis Josephus

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Join the Pulpit Freedom Movement

For almost the first 200 years in America, pastors spoke freely and boldly from their pulpit about the issues of the day, including candidates running for office. But in 1954, the passage of one piece of legislation effectively overturned this freedom: The Johnson Amendment. A pastor’s pulpit should be accountable to God alone, and the future of religious freedom in America depends on it. The good of our society depends upon the ability of churches to speak freely. When the church is silent, the culture suffers.

It’s time to put an end to the Johnson Amendment. Go to:

https://www.adflegal.org/issues/religious-freedom/church/key-issues/pulpit-freedom-sunday
Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith. http://www.adflegal.org/