Are We in the Twilight Zone?

Just when you thought the world could get no crazier with the redefinition of marriage, now we are having a bathroom debate.

I firmly believe that common sense is enduring a slow and painful death. At first it sounded like a bad joke but the decision to protect clergy and businesses from the perversion of our culture laws are being debated.

My friend I have problems coming to grips with the idea of my granddaughter going to the restroom only to find a hairy man with a dress and a wig on in the next stall.  Hollywood, the NFL and other companies are all crying alarm to what they refer to as laws that discriminate against the homosexual community.  I believe it is time to draw the line in the sand, enough is enough!

Excuse me, but our identity is not in your feelings but your biology. I can’t believe there is actually a need to say this, but many on the Left are living in their own invented reality and they are demanding that we live in it too. The reason we’ve always had separate bathrooms is because of biological sexual differences, not because of feelings or “gender identity.”

How could this possibly be controversial? Are we to risk the safety of millions of women and children in public restrooms because an extremely small number of people are experiencing a mismatch between their psychology and their biology? Good public policy does not risk the physical safety of women and children so an extreme few have a preference for a different bathroom.

These new laws simply say that people will use public bathrooms that align with their biological sex as found on their birth certificate. During this upcoming election it’s time for Christians to truly vote their convictions and get us out of the Twilight Zone!

Is this what America is coming to – men fighting over their “right” to use the lady’s restroom, shower with girls, enter the female dressing room, and homosexuals insisting the government be used as a hammer to force a baker to bake a cake for a gay ceremony?  Preachers being jailed for preaching the gospel or refusing to perform marriage ceremonials that are contrary to Biblical principles or their belief’s?

As a former civil rights advocate in the 60’s I will not sit on the sidelines and allow liberal media and establishment politicians to distort matters of public policy. It’s time for the church to the stand for righteousness and the fight against progressive liberalism or be rolled over by LGBT agenda. Which will you choose?

This is the Voice of the Overseer!

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The Christian Code of Honor

One major thing that is missing from the church today is honor.  What happened to honor in our culture. We fail to realize today that the church has affected them church in the west in a negative manner. 

We are quick to follow orders and even obey but the term honor has been quickly forgot in today’s vernacular.  Just because one submits occasionally does not mean they possess a submissive spirit. 

 It is amazing that as we look at the Ten Commandments the first four deal with honoring God and the last six deal with honoring man. As a noun, honor in the Bible means “esteem, value, or great respect.” To honor someone is to value him highly or bestow value upon him. The Bible exhorts us to express honor and esteem toward certain people: our parents, the aged, and those in authority (Ephesians 6:2; Leviticus 19:32; Romans 13:1). But we must understand that all authority and honor belong to God alone (1 Chronicles 29:11; 1 Timothy 1:17; Revelation 5:13). Though He can delegate His authority to others, it still belongs to Him (Ephesians 4:11-12).

Peter tells us to “honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king” (1 Peter 2:17). The idea of honoring others, especially those in authority (the king), comes from the fact that they represent God’s ultimate authority. A classic example is the command to “submit to the governing authorities because they have been established by God” (Romans 13:1-6). Therefore, “he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves” (Romans 13:2). This means it is incumbent upon Christians to honor those whom God has placed over us through our obedience and demonstration of respect. To do otherwise is to dishonor God.

The Bible speaks of another noteworthy group of people who are deserving of “double honor,” the leadership of the church, called elders: “Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching” (1 Timothy 5:17). In the first-century church, some elders labored in word and doctrine by devoting their time to preaching and teaching, while others did so privately. However, all elders gave attention to the interests of the church and the welfare of its members. These men were entitled to double honor of both respect and deference for their position, as well as material or monetary support. This was especially significant because the New Testament was not yet available. We have a serious issue with regard to spiritual authority in western culture.

The Bible also gives us the command to honor one another in our employer/employee relationships (1 Timothy 3:17; 6:1; Ephesians 6:5-9), as well as in the marriage relationship with the husband and wife being in submission to and honoring one another (Hebrews 13:4; Ephesians 5:23-33). Interestingly enough, of all the commands to honor one another, the most oft-repeated pertains to that of honoring one’s father and mother (Exodus 20:12; Matthew 15:4). This command was so important to God that if anyone cursed or struck his parent, he was to be put to death (Exodus 21:7).

All true believers are to honor God and His Son, Jesus Christ, through our acknowledgement and confession that He is the one and only God (Exodus 20:3; John 14:6; Romans 10:9). We are to honor God in our recognition that the gift of life eternal and the very salvation of our souls come through Jesus Christ and Him alone (John 11:25; Acts 4:12; 1 Timothy 2:5). Knowing this, we give honor and obeisance to our Savior through our humble adoration and obedience to His will (John 14:23-24; 1 John 2:6). As such, He will honor us when He seats us on His throne in heaven (Revelation 3:21).

This is the Voice of the Overseer

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Forty Years and Counting

PASTORREID

In just a little over a week we will celebrate twelve years as a church at Victory Family Outreach Ministries, we will also commemorate 40 years of ministry service.

These are major milestones when you consider our plight and how God has proved himself faithful time after time. We will conduct this special celebration with an afternoon service Sunday October 11th at 3:00 p.m. with Bishop E.V. Reeves, Presiding Prelate of Eagle’s Rock Communion of Christian Leaders as our guest speaker and The Life, church family.

Our theme for this year’s event is “Enduring the race, with God’s grace.” Hebrews 13:7.

Ironically, the majority of our 40 years of ministry was spent in the service to others. I had very humble beginnings as a deacon, minister, evangelist, elder, pastor and now as a bishop.  I learned early that ministry and my calling was never about me but about serving.  It has been a long road where I have had the opportunity to view ministry from various aspects of church offices.

The church world has changed significantly during this time. I often say the church today bears little resemblance to the church I was raised up in.

During this period these are just a few things I have learned in this ministry journey.

  • If you love hard you will hurt hard.
  • Everyone that stands beside you are not standing with you.
  • Learn to trust God for truly he is your source and not the people.
  • You belong to the people but they belong to God.
  • You are married to your wife, not the church.
  • Just because someone is a member of your church don’t mean that you are their pastor.

We never could have made it this far without you, our faith, prayers and trust in God.  While some may mark this as a significant milestone I view as an honor and privilege to serve and just be a part of the Kingdom of God.

I will close this blog with what I quote at the end of every leadership training opportunity I provide to clergy.

“To serve is an honor, to teach is a privilege.”

This is the Voice of the Overseer

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Call of Duty

In a few months I will celebrate 40 years of ministry.  I accepted the call of God in my life in 1975 after serving as a deacon in the church.  It’s amazing that this has been a generation ago; moreover, how the world has changed.

Starting as a street preacher, working in tent meetings and conducting revivals seems so foreign now.  In such a short time span we have witnessed our culture move from a Biblical worldview to a totally secular paradigm.  The most difficult aspect of this has been the departure of the saints from their foundation.  This spirit has been very deliberate and if you have only been serving the Lord in the past twenty years you may not comprehend how it occurred.

We live in a very difficult time to serve in ministry let alone be a witness for Christ.  In all my years of ministry never have I witnessed such a spirit of weariness in the body of Christ.  The scripture says that in the last days the enemy would wear the saints out.

As an Overseer and now a Bishop I occasionally interact with many Pastors and Christian leaders.  On a regular basis I witnessed pastors and Christian leaders walking away from their calling, ministries and even their church. Their reasons for these actions are not found in the Word of God but are in many instances where they were seeking the approval of man or did not experience the results they expected.  In essence, this is offense, given this is defined by disappointment in an expectation from an individual or circumstance.

Don’t let discouragement over an apparent lack of results keep you from fulfilling the call of God in your life.  Don’t give up!

I Cor. 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

Do the good that you have opportunity to do, knowing your work will have eternal results!  Remember the Word God, “Endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.”  This is your true “Call of Duty.”

This is the Voice of the Overseer!

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Seven Things Christians Should Do Now!

In the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s decision on marriage, which effectively codifies Bible believers as bigots, the attack on conservative Christian values has reached fever pitch.  By now many of you have lost friends on Facebook and followers on Twitter and Instagram.

If you do not affirm homosexual “marriage,” homosexual relationships, and even homosexuality itself, you are a hate-filled, despicable, uneducated bigot, with the emphasis on that last word, bigot.

So how then do we respond when cornered with the name callers?

First, the uglier and more vile the attacks, the more we know we’re doing the right thing. The opposition is a sign of encouragement to us, and the more people try to silence us, the louder we shout but remember in love.

Second, we must remember that this is a spiritual battle and that Satan hates homosexuals and heterosexuals alike. Fervent prayer is one of our greatest resources.

Third, we must bless those who curse us and overcome evil with good, to use the words of Jesus and Paul.  Responding to hatred with hatred will hurt everyone, ourselves included and thus closes doors.

Fourth, we must continue to propagate the truth until the lies are dispelled, cutting through the emotional arguments and rhetorical attacks and doing our best to get people to think, sometimes by asking questions.  Civility wins, learn to disagree and not be disagreeable.

Fifth, we must remember that Jesus already warned us that the world would hate us for doing what is right, and so we must renew our resolve to stand firm with backbones of steel and hearts of compassion. Endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

Sixth, we must determine afresh to bring the good news of the gospel to everyone, knowing that our ultimate counterculture weapon is the message of the death and resurrection of the Son of God.  This is the real love the world is looking for.

Seventh, we must pray for a spiritual awaking in our nation, a revival in the church and visitation of the Holy Spirit, knowing that only a massive move of God can turn the tide.

Ultimately, whether America goes up or down, we will continue to live for the Lord, continue to do what is right, continue to reach out, and continue to stand strong.

This is the Voice of the Overseer

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The Charleston Church Massacre

Although I have a social media account I prefer to blog regarding such issues as what occurred in Charleston, SC earlier this week.

In the past months a number of significant church leaders from various denominations have come together to discuss the matter of race in America. This stigma on our society is like a cancer that seemingly will not go away.  In the sixties and seventies various levels of legislation were passed to force desegregation; however, no laws on the books can change the hearts of men.

In the midst of the mourning and so-called unity in SC the Confederate Battle flag yet flies high and proud. This is the flag of the rebels, the traitors, the states that stood their ground to ensure slavery as an institution would thrive and survive.  Many whites will say this is their heritage; however, such a past is more than a nightmare for anyone that was non-white.

You can blame the Dixiecrats for the racist implications of the Confederate flag. The Dixiecrats were a party made up of anti-integration college students who co-opted the flag as their standard.  These were the democrats of the south, yes, the democratic party. The image of Dixiecrats fighting the National Guard while waving Confederate flags became branded into the national psyche in the 50’s and 60’s. And so, the flag became tied to racism.  I remember seeing the flag everyday as I participated in the integration of schools in Macon, GA in 1965.

Today, this flag is handed out at rock concerts and is just as likely to be found in rural New York as sweet home Alabama. It’s no longer just a symbol of the South; it’s become part of the good old boy culture of guns, trucks, and country music.  As a black man I see this as a symbol of hate and tyranny.  While the Confederate flag may not be intrinsically racist, it represents the entirety of southern history, much of which was racist. There is a connection to racism and the confederate flag.

As people of color we must also look at eliminating use of the ‘N” word.  I painfully recall hearing this term every day at Willingham High school.  Unfortunately, many of our youth have embraced this term as a rite of passage in the world of rap and hip hop music.  People are taught to hate. In the 60’s I would watch little black and white kids play together until an adult came on the scene and would quickly separate them. Changing America and our world is not the responsibility of governments and laws.

As the thoughts of this American tragedy remain in our psyche let us not be so insensitive to move on until the next act of violence causes us to only pause briefly from our daily routine.  It starts with addressing this at home first.  As President Reagan stood before the Berlin wall and cried out “tear this wall down,” we must in tell South Carolina and other states to take this flag down!

This is the Voice of the Overseer

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The New god

The new god

You will notice I will use and spell the word god with small letters in this blog.

The scripture clears states in the Ten Commandments, Exodus 20:1 And God spake all these words, saying, 2 I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

As I have read this verse literally hundreds of times I finally get the full revelation of what the Lord is saying. Why was this commandment so important to be the first thing God tells the children of Israel?  Unfortunately, this commandment has been violated and destroyed in our culture.

The new god on the scene is no mystery.  The new god is us. Yes, we have declared and decreed that we are our own gods. There is no standard for our righteousness for it is based on what we think, feel and is culturally acceptable.

As parents we are told in the Word of God to train up our children in the way they should go and when they get old they would not depart from it.  However, we let our children be raised by the television as we went off to work and make a living.  Now those parents of that generation watch as their children are being trained and influenced by social media and the internet.  As a result we have seen social and culture change take place at a pace never witnessed in society or world history.  Moreover, it is frightening to realize where this will end.

In our latest move we seem to want to erase the idea of gender identity and reinforce it all at once. We don’t want to have to

The Voice of the Overseer

The Voice of the Overseer

absurdity and inconsistency of it all.

This is not the first time in history this has occurred. As Paul wrote to the church in Rome he cited this passage in his first chapter, Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 32 who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

If you read your history books you know how that story ended.

This is the Voice of the Overseer!

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The Church is the Problem and the Solution!

The Church is the Problem and the Solution!

If you have read a number of my blogs or listened intently to some of my messages you will know that I often cite the significant changes in our nation.  The shift in our culture has been breathtaking in its speed, spread, and virulence—impossible to miss, and increasingly dangerous to ignore.  We are truly living in a post-modern age.

I’m talking of course about the hostility in our culture and country to Christianity, the church, Christians, and Biblical morality. I heard it said over the weekend that right is now wrong and wrong is right.  If you are far to the right you’re basically a bigot in society’s eyes.

Christians in America are on a fast track to being a persecuted, despised minority in the very country established as a haven for those persecuted by an intolerant, secular majority. Amazingly, this is very similar to what has been happening to Israel in the decades.

But do you know why?

The answer is simple. Today, only 12% of the population is involved in church. 12%. I know this is shocking to learn. You don’t hear that number much—do you? What you hear is that over 60% of the country states that they have received Christ and are Christians.  Churches are closing and missions work is suffering do to a lack of financial support from one of the most affluent countries and societies in our history. Whatever else these statistics indicate, it is clear that the church is both the problem—and the solution.

The church is the problem because we’ve been inauthentic in our lifestyle, inattentive in our evangelism, fruitless in our prayer lives,  ineffective in our discipleship, inert in our leadership development, and we’ve burnt out far-too-many pastors and leaders by insisting on models and methods guaranteed to fail.

Yet the church is also the solution, not only because God ordained it and promised that the gates of hell won’t prevail against it, but also because Christians who are vitally involved in strong churches are the only ones God can truly use to re-Christianize America.  And to do that, the church and the Kingdom of God needs to develop leaders who will plant churches.

I have spent at least ten years understanding the causes behind the shift in our culture, and how to pivot people in our culture to Christ.  Given over 90% of Pastors and leaders work for a living we have to develop strategies to equip and empower bi-vocational church leaders. Research shows that bi-vocational leaders will dominate the future American church—yet these leaders never get the specialized training they need.

As we see our country literally ‘Hurtling’ toward Gomorrah, it’s time to draw the line in the sand.  Now is not to time to retreat.  We must train and develop the next level of church leadership to engage the culture in what truly is a culture war.

This is the Voice of the Overseer

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Peace and Islam?

If you didn’t check out my blog last week, I am reposting it today. Feel free to comment.

The Voice of the Overseer

It seems as if the public is no longer shocked by the barbaric acts of Islamic terrorists and extremists with the beheadings, kidnappings and people being burned alive. While the world is alarmed regarding what is happening in the Muslim world today but what are we doing; moreover, what are the so called moderate Muslims doing. Did you notice the words I’m using you such as terrorist, radical Muslims are no longer heard through the liberal media.
It appears that the world was caught totally caught off guard by what happened in Syria and Iraq, but we failed to heed the warnings of what would happen if we left Iraq with no bases or capable military strike force in place to support the so-called Iraqi Army. This is the same army that fled and ran as the forces of ISIS gained possession of the many Humvees, armored personnel carriers and…

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Peace and Islam?

It seems as if the public is no longer shocked by the barbaric acts of Islamic terrorists and extremists with the beheadings, kidnappings and people being burned alive. While the world is alarmed regarding what is happening in the Muslim world today but what are we doing; moreover, what are the so called moderate Muslims doing. Did you notice the words I’m using you such as terrorist, radical Muslims are no longer heard through the liberal media.
It appears that the world was caught totally caught off guard by what happened in Syria and Iraq, but we failed to heed the warnings of what would happen if we left Iraq with no bases or capable military strike force in place to support the so-called Iraqi Army. This is the same army that fled and ran as the forces of ISIS gained possession of the many Humvees, armored personnel carriers and tanks they left behind.
We are at war whether you chose to acknowledge it or not.
These are just some of the factions we are facing:
• Al-Qaeda
• Hamas
• Hezbollah
• Taliban
• The Muslim Brotherhood (already in our government)
• ISIS
• Boko Haram

What are their true plans? They want to conquer the entire world and set up an Islamic state here.
Our government and the media tells us that Islam is peace. Muslims are not at peace even with one another. They even blow up each others mosques during evening prayers. Sunni Muslims believe and confirm that Abu Bakr was chosen by the community and that this was the proper procedure. Sunnis further argue that a caliph should ideally be chosen by election or community consensus.
Shi’a Muslims believe that Ali, the son-in-law and cousin of Muhammad, was chosen by Muhammad as his spiritual and temporal successor as the Mawla (the Imam and the Caliph) of all Muslims at a place called al-Gadhir Khumm. Here Mohammad called upon the around 100,000 gathered returning pilgrims to give their bayah (oath of allegiance) to Ali in his very presence and thenceforth to proclaim the good news of Ali’s succession to his (Muhammad’s) leadership to all Muslims they should come across.
Jihad is the struggle to conquer the world with the United States and Israel as the ultimate targets. In Islam there is no difference in the political and the religious or religion. As the news media continue to tell the lies that Islam is peace I ponder to ask the following question. If Islam is peace why aren’t there any churches in most Muslim countries, why is it against the law to have a bible in many of these places, and why are non-believers beheaded merely because they refuse to convert.
Their beliefs are contrary to that of what the United States and western culture stands for. They intend to conquer the United States through Jihad. There goal is the establishment of an Islamic form of government or an Islamic state. The Caliph is the head of state in a Caliphate, and the title for the ruler of the Islamic, an Islamic community ruled by the Shari’ah law.
We are focusing on a completely liberal agenda which is a deception from the real threat. While western Christians are so inwardly focused and hopping from church to church they are winning the battle of education with our politicians and even members of the Christian clergy understanding very little about true Islam.
The Muslim jihadists do not believe what they are doing are terrorist acts. In Islam their peace is the absence of opposition. You see, the definition of a Muslim is one who submits. There will be no peace until you submit!!
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