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WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE…?

Posted by admin dated: May 28, 2016

 “WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE…?”

A Biblical View of Judging One Another

 

It’s been said that Christians can be some of the most judgmental people in the world.  Whether this is a true statement or not is up for debate, but the bigger issue is the fact that the statement is even associated with Christianity, the church and the people of God to begin with.  It is to a degree somewhat confusing because we serve a God who is infinite in wisdom, who has all power and authority in His hands and has been extremely gracious and merciful toward us, it would be safe to assume that in return we would be even the more gracious and merciful toward others.  However in most instances, this is unfortunately not the case.

 

The Apostle Paul, writing to the Roman believers, stresses certain matters with them that have caused division between Jewish and Gentile believers.  The basic premise of Romans Chapter 14 is that our freedom and liberties should not be causes of failure or stumbling in the lives of others.  There were certain Jewish believers who held fast to some of the customs as it pertains to what was permitted to eat, drink and the observance of certain days.  However, their customs did not pertain to those Gentile believers present in the church.  They each began to condemn one another for this and passed judgment based upon what they believed.  Paul writes this letter to them in order to bring order, balance and at the same time gives us clarity pertaining to judging someone else, of which I would like to highlight:

 

1). We are not all at the same place or level!  (Romans 14:1, 2) – Paul says in v. 1, that some of us are weak in the faith.  All of us are not strong or on some super Christian level that makes us impervious to certain challenges.  SOME OF US ARE WEAK…!  Paul says to, “accept other believers who are weak in faith…” (NLT).  How are we to accept and embrace those who are weak in the faith?  Paul says by not arguing with them about what is right or wrong.  Why does this matter?  Because the argument in and of itself becomes the bases for condemnation, because we’re going back and forth over an issue or matter that we have different opinions about, instead of allowing people to grow and come into the knowledge of certain matters that only God and the Holy Spirit can shed light upon.  Some matters that we consider right, maybe wrong to someone else, and some issues that are wrong maybe right to someone else.  Paul is saying don’t allow those differences to be the bases of argument which breeds condemnation.  Those who are weak in the faith, given the time and patience to mature, will eventually come to terms with those matters that are wrong, but it’s not our place to argue, which leads to some feeling condemned, and eventually those who are weak in the faith fall by the wayside!  The blood is on our hands.  Let’s learn how to gracious toward others and love them to growth!

We expect people who have used tobacco for over 20 years to surrender their lives to Christ and stop smoking simultaneously.  As soon as we smell smoke on another believers breathe, we’re ready to send them directly to hell, when in fact they are a little weak in the faith.  Be gracious and give them space to learn that their “bodies are the Temple of the Holy Spirit…!”   We must learn to stopping judging people based on our position of church polity.  Many times we judge on appearance, but not wearing what YOU DEFINE as “church clothes,” does not make someone a heathen!  Everybody is not on the same stage in the process of walking out God’s plan for their lives.  We shouldn’t judge those that are weak, and we shouldn’t judge those who are strong.

 

2). We can’t condemn what doesn’t belong to us…!  (Romans 14:4) - Paul says if we stand, we stand to our Master, and if we fall, we fall to our Master.  Either way it is to the Lord our Master, and not man.  Human judgment infringes upon God’s prerogative as Judge.  When we judge the failure or success of another, we are in essence taking God’s right or place to judge, and that’s not our place!  Rapper Tupac declared, “only God can judge me…”  The Apostle said, “who are you to judge somebody who doesn’t even belong to you…!” He goes on to say that if you observe certain days, observe them to the Lord.  And whatever you eat, eat it as unto the Lord.  If we live, (v.8) we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord, so whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s!  (v.12) Everybody shall give account of him/herself to God, NOT MAN…!  Why doesn’t God give us the right to judge others?  One reason is because we are not gracious, nor fair in our judgment!  You remember the story of The Prophet Nathan’s confrontation with David after his sin with Bathsheba and had her husband Uriah murdered (2 Samuel 12:1 – 8 NLT):

 

1So the lord sent Nathan the prophet to tell David this story: “There were two men in a certain town. One was rich, and one was poor. 2The rich man owned a great many sheep and cattle. 3The poor man owned nothing but one little lamb he had bought. He raised that little lamb, and it grew up with his children. It ate from the man’s own plate and drank from his cup. He cuddled it in his arms like a baby daughter. 4One day a guest arrived at the home of the rich man. But instead of killing an animal from his own flock or herd, he took the poor man’s lamb and killed it and prepared it for his guest.”5David was furious. “As surely as the lord lives,” he vowed, “any man who would do such a thing deserves to die! 6He must repay four lambs to the poor man for the one he stole and for having no pity.”7Then Nathan said to David, “You are that man! The lord, the God of Israel, says: I anointed you king of Israel and saved you from the power of Saul. 8I gave you your master’s house and his wives and the kingdoms of Israel and Judah. And if that had not been enough, I would have given you much, much more.

 

David was ready to kill the man, not realizing he had done the same thing and worse!  That’s one of the reasons we are not permitted to judge.  Some of us don’t know when enough is enough, and our judgment becomes abusive!  The mere fact that God was gracious, and we did not get what we deserve is reason enough not to judge others.

Another reason it’s good that we not judge others is found in Matthew 7:1, “Judge not, that you be not judged. 2 For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.”  In other words, the same severity at which we judge others, God will judge us…!  With that in mind, we should FLEE from positions of being judge!

 

3). Human judgment is primarily based on human conviction…! (Romans 14:10 – 14) – If what someone does distresses, offends, hurts or causes another to stumble, then LOVE says, “don’t do it!”  If eating meat offends my brother, I won’t do it.  The Gentiles eating pork offended the Jews, and Paul was saying that if you love your Jewish brother, and pork offends them, then don’t eat it…!  I don’t drink alcohol, although drinking alcohol is not sin, being drunk is.  I have quite a few Pastor friends who drink a glass of wine with their food and have an occasional beer.  They ask, “Ken, you don’t drink?”  No I don’t.  “Do you mind if we do?”  No I don’t mind at all.  Had I said yes I do mind and it bothers me, they would not have had it around me because they love me.  However, in the same regard, don’t judge a person for doing something that convicts you, but not them.  In other words, I can’t judge my friends based on my alcohol convictions!  Love says, I will embrace you with the strength of my convictions and not judge you…!  We specialize in pointing out the speck in our brother’s eye, while we have a plank in our own eye!

 

Listen at what Paul continues to say in Romans 14:17 – 23:

 

17 “For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18 If you serve Christ with this attitude, you will please God, and others will approve of you, too. 19 So then, let us aim for harmony in the church and try to build each other up. 20 Don’t tear apart the work of God over what you eat. Remember, all foods are acceptable, but it is wrong to eat something if it makes another person stumble. 21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything else if it might cause another believer to stumble. 22 You may believe there’s nothing wrong with what you are doing, but keep it between yourself and God. Blessed are those who don’t feel guilty for doing something they have decided is right. 23 But if you have doubts about whether or not you should eat something, you are sinning if you go ahead and do it. For you are not following your convictions. If you do anything you believe is not right, you are sinning.”

 

I pray this blog opens our understanding or at least challenges us to really think before we further offend others by judging their indiscretions.  It becomes very difficult for us as believers to “build each other up in the faith” if when we do fall short we are not gracious with one another.  We bring greater shame upon others which unfortunately causing some to drift away from God and the local church.  Let’s not damage our witness nor assist the kingdom of darkness by placing the fallen into the hands of the enemy, but rather embrace them reflecting the love of God who is ever merciful and compassionate toward us all.  Peace and love…!

 

Kenneth Yelverton is the servant leader of The Temple of Refuge Church in Charlotte, NC.  He is the author of “Sex and the Kingdom: A Biblical Portrait of Human Sexuality.”  He holds a Master of Divinity Degree from the Hood Theological Seminary and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Drew Theological School as a Donald Hilliard – Leonard Sweet Fellow.  Visit www.kennethyelverton.org for more information on the ministry of Kenneth Yelverton.

 

 

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So, Are YOU Ready For Love?

Posted by admin dated: February 19, 2014

Please welcome and be blessed by my Guest Blogger and Minister of the Gospel, Minister Michelle Cameron.

So, Are YOU Ready For Love?

I asked myself this question recently, so I thought I would ask you as well. Here are some of the ways to prepare for a meaningful relationship that will possibly lead to marriage.

Release Soul Ties & Emotional Baggage: The process of releasing connections with our past can be difficult. Soul ties refer to the connection with past partners that may result in emotional withdrawals and not feeling able to “let go”. Many times individuals who have a soul tie will separate and reconnect at least once, and most times the negative attributes of the relationship may be overlooked for the few “good times” they may have shared together. Soul ties do not require sexual interaction to be created. Emotional baggage typically refers to issues that may have resulted from past relationship experiences (for example, if sexual abuse was experienced, the emotional baggage of the fear of intimacy may be present). Because soul ties and emotional baggage are challenging to handle, connection with a caring Christian mentor of the same sex as well as a professional counselor will help to break these chains. Acknowledge that these issues exist. Get rid of gifts or other physical reminders of past relationships. Allow God to heal your heart and help you find the possibility to forgive those who hurt you.

Give Yourself the Gift of Time: Allow some time to pass between relationships before becoming involved with someone new. To avoid carrying over baggage from previous relationships into a new one, give your mind and heart an opportunity to clear itself of regrets and past disappointments. Use this time to reflect, pray, journal, read the Bible and other solid self-help books (such as Kenny Pugh’s “Can You Do It Standing Up: A Different Position on Relationships”), and spend time improving yourself instead. Do something new! Travel! Network! Go out and experience what life has to offer without becoming preoccupied in finding a new partner.

Learn Who You Are (and who you’re not): Spend as much time as you can alone with YOU. Learn your likes and dislikes. Figure out your non-negotiables and keep them in the forefront. Erect healthy boundaries in other areas of your life as self-discovery unfolds (e.g. in your finances, and in friendships and family relationships) – and stick to them. Knowing yourself helps you determine who deserves your time.

Build on your Self-Esteem: As you learn who you are and as you remove toxicity from your life, your self-esteem will increase. Be confident in who God created you to be! We were all created by God for a unique purpose. Our individuality is reflected in our fingerprints – even with identical twins! We are valuable to God and to emotionally healthy people.

As you take these courageous steps to move forward with your lives, be patient. Growth and healing take time. Remember, you are preparing for a love that will last a lifetime. Allow God to guide you during your moments of preparation and you will reap the desired fruit, in His time.

Biography:

Michelle Cameron is an avid writer since the age of 15 with recent features on the “Black and Married with Kids” website and Armed Magazine (online), and released her first book, “It’s My Life and I Live Here: One Woman’s Story” in 2011. As a former Toastmaster and soloist, Michelle is honing the art of public speaking and also using the vehicle of song to inspire and uplift women with her testimony. Michelle currently resides in New Jersey and is the mother of one son. Connect with Michelle’s official blog at “Life, Love and Other Topics: My Commentary.” www.michellegcameronwrites.com

What are your thoughts…? What would you add that would be helpful in preparation for love…? Share below:

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Church Hurt

Posted by admin dated: January 25, 2014

“There Are Two Sides To Every Story”

I often hear of horrific stories of persons who have experienced being hurt in some capacity or another in the church. By no means do I seek to minimize the reality of what many people have obviously had to endure through the church. I only seek to offer some advice and a few suggestions that may prove to be helpful in overcoming and avoiding this kind of pain.

1.The Church didn’t hurt you, people or a person did! – We have to be careful of taking a relationship that perhaps went sour within the church, and labeling it as church hurt. Yes, persons within the church ought to know better, but the reality is the church is comprised of people who are in “the process of being saved.” In other words, because we are all imperfect, you can expect that you will at some point be affected by someone’s imperfections. It’s really unfortunate for the Lord’s Church and the work of ministry to be counted as the villain and bearing the banner of “the church that hurt you.” People leave one church with the allegation, “that church isn’t right and they hurt me,” only to go to another church and run into the same or similar issue. Their only way to deal with their so-called “church hurt,” becomes not to get involved with the church nor seek to formulate any relationships with those of the church. Their final solution is to come, sit in the back, leave early, and rush out as soon as possible with little to no contact. By no means am I minimizing the fact that many people have been abused, broken and severely wounded, however, it should not be labeled as church hurt and the real culprit need be identified. I know first hand the pain of being hurt in church, but I did not hold the church liable for what people did to me, and my love and appreciation for that church remains to this present day.

2. Church Discipline Hurts…! – Every church and leader handles matters of church discipline differently; nonetheless, church discipline is needed and necessary. Every organization on some level has policy for disciplinary action. It just so happens that it seems that church discipline is the one place that people have problems with it. If there is a history of lateness to work, misuse of company time and benefits, low job performance and poor evaluations, there are measures in place to combat these matters with employees. However, the church is supposed to be “sympathetic” and “understanding” and should not say or do anything of a corrective type action or folks will cry foul! Churches must have a policy or method in place to apply church discipline because its part of the learning process as a disciple of Jesus Christ. We are dealing with an undisciplined generation that shuns correction, and has created a cultural of “do whatever you want to do” in the church. I will speak of this later in this post, but at times what people call church hurt, could very well be an unwillingness to receive correction (Hebrews 12:1 – 11). My mother use to tell me often after she spanked me, “I did that because I love you…!” I didn’t understand it as a child, but all I can say now is thank you momma for every spanking…!

3. Pulpits/Preaching Should NEVER Become Combative! – Now, I know that I may catch some “flack” over this one, but to take to the public forum of the “preaching moment” to handle personal matters is never wise. As Pastors and preachers, it is vital that we control our emotions relative to matters with those that may, or may not be, considered “problem church members.” What ends up happening is a great deal of preaching based on rumors, gossip, and hearsay that has come to the Pastors attention, or we do combative preaching based off of an assumption, instead of a private meeting with the person or party involved. A good rule of thumb to consider is, “public matters are handled publically, but private matters are handled privately.” Public matters should be addressed in a public meeting other than the Sunday morning worship time, and after failed attempts at private resolution. The very day the Pastor decides to give the people “a piece of his/her mind,” could be the very day that someone contemplating suicide walks through the door. Instead of preaching the Word God gave that may save a life, we give place to the enemy and flesh, and the “blood is on our hands.”

4. “Open Rebuke Will Cause Others To Fear” (1 Timothy 5:20). Yes, this would work in Paul’s day and in our forefather’s church, but “this is not your father’s Oldsmobile…!” Paul said, “first the natural, and then the spiritual” (1 Cor. 15:44-46). In other words whatever happens in the natural realm corresponds in the spiritual realm. There are certain things that have happened in the natural world that have had direct effect on the church over the last two to three decades. With cooperate prayer taken out of our schools, the paddle taken out of the teacher’s hands, the parental “rod of correction” labeled as child abuse and the lack of fathers in the homes, have all aided in creating a cultural that absolutely has a disdain for correction…! So now when church leadership must deal with matters of correction and church discipline, it is not received many times and tagged under the mantra, “if my natural father didn’t “spank me,” you can rest assured church leadership (fathers) better not try and spank me either.” After you’ve been sent to “time out” several times, grounded and lose certain privileges many times, and the same type of behavior continues, at what point do you utilize the “rod of correction?” As a result, we see people bouncing from one church to the next, or not going at all, choosing to be a “streaming visitor.” We have Pastors and churches moving from one covering to another one, until they finally resolve, “God told me to launch my own Reformation!” The lack of home training has carried over into the church and people are determined to do as they please or they will let everybody know “their version of events” and how they were hurt at church, but “there are two sides or more, to every story…!”

5. How To Avoid “Church Hurt” – There are many ways and much counsel to offer on avoiding “church hurt.” However, for your consideration I offer what I believe to be one of the best solutions. Take your focus off of the people of the church, and put it on the God of the Church…! As Pastors and leaders, there must be a level of transparency with the people that says, “I’m your Pastor/leader, but I’m flawed and prone to error, therefore take your eyes off of me, and place them where they should be; on God! There’s an old saying that some leaders still abide by, “follow me as I follow God.” How about we all join in and follow God together…? What happens in many instances is we place people in lofty positions and place emphasis on the position in church, and not the person of Christ. When that someone in a certain church position hurts us, we are devastated mainly because our connection to the church was and is that person. I inform the people of the ministry where I serve, “don’t be here because of me… be here for God because if I fall short, and I have the propensity to do just that, then your life, and church relationship is devastated and you’re left hurt.” Connect with ministry, fellowship and serve with others, foster and maintain healthy relationships with each other, but your commitment must remain to the one who suffered, died, was buried, and rose from the grave.

I hope in some small way, this post proves to be helpful in both avoiding and healing from “church hurt.” By no means do I have all the answers, and I’m certain some will agree and/or disagree. Either way, I would love to hear your comments below, and please Facebook it, tweet it, email it, and share it with your friends, family, and especially those who have experienced or presently dealing with any type of hurt through church relationships.

Kenneth Yelverton is the founding Pastor of The Temple of Refuge Church in Charlotte, NC., and is the author of “Sex and the Kingdom: A Biblical Portrait of Human Sexuality.” At present, he is a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree from Drew Theological School in Madison, NJ as a Donald Hilliard – Len Sweet Fellow. He is married, a father of three and a friend to many.

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The Struggle Is Real

Posted by admin dated: January 2, 2014

Over the next several post, Kenneth Yelverton Ministries will feature writings from guest bloggers, who will share their perspectives on love, relationships and human sexuality. Be blessed by the post and don’t forget to comment below, and share with your friends.

The Struggle Is Real
By Adrian L. Harper

 

I’ve been a Christian for as long as I can remember. I’ve been serving in ministry for almost eight years with three of those as a pastor. I’m single (never married) and have no children. I’ve dated some amazing men and take no pride in saying that I have engaged in premarital sex, more than once, since answering my call into this level of ministry. I’m not sharing this information as an advertisement for a potential mate or as an attempt to seek sympathy. I’m sharing it because I don’t want anyone who is reading this to think they’re alone. My hope is that it will serve as a reminder that when it comes to dealing with sex and the desire to act upon it…The Struggle Is Real! I’m also hoping that what I’m about to share with you will help you understand that overcoming it is just as real and it can be done.

First, let me start by saying that our desire to engage in sexual intimacy is normal. It’s not uncommon and it’s a natural part of who we are. It was never designed to be something ‘dirty’ or ‘shameful’. I can’t speak from experience but I hear sex is a beautiful thing when it’s done within the confines of marriage. But what does one do until they get married? How do we (the singles saints) remain successfully single until we say, “I do” to that special someone? I don’t claim to be an expert and I can honestly say, “IT’S NOT EASY!” but a couple of years ago, I came up with some ways that have helped me on this journey.

One night, while teaching bible study, we got on the topic of resisting temptation. I was led to read 1 Corinthians 10:13:

“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”

As I finished reading it, I looked up and I could literally see light bulbs going off. Some of you scholarly saints may say this is a no brainer but for some it really isn’t. So much focus is put on the sin itself that we forget that temptation is the precursor of sin. Overcoming the temptation to act on something is a whole lot easier than walking away from the sin itself.

That night, we came up with some practical ways of resisting the temptation that leads to sexual sin. Over time, I’ve added to the list. I understand that no two people are the same and situations may differ but I believe these can lay a healthy foundation for those who are struggling. I will share seven (7) things from my extensive list with you now.

1. Avoid watching movies or television shows that have sexual overtones. All it takes is for one thought to enter our minds and the next thing we know we are acting upon that thought or at least trying to.

2. Monitor the music you listen to. Keep it clean! Once upon a time we had to guess at what was being implied in musical lyrics but not today.

3. Going on a date? Accept invitations for lunch and a matinee ONLY!

4. Don’t have extensive conversations over text messages and email! Skype, Facetime or call them on the phone. You would be surprise at how creative a person can be with their words when they are not face to face with someone.

5. If you’re in a relationship, limit your hand holding and physical contact. An innocent hand on a knee can set off all kinds of hormonal reactions; and if they think you need a massage or your feet rubbed, ask for a gift certificate to a spa.

6. Know what you like. We all have a type that we’re weak for. People who say they have control over their hormones or they are happily single haven’t been presented with the right opportunity yet.

7. Lastly, let the Holy Spirit be your guide. Ask God daily to help you on this journey and be willing to let go of those things (people) who are not on the same page as you are.

I hope this helps and I look forward to your feedback. Until then…guard your heart and protect your mind because The Struggle Is Real!

Pastor Adrian L. Harper is the founding Pastor of New Season Christian Ministries in the city of Charlotte, NC. She is a native Charlottean and proud graduate of Johnson C. Smith University.

Contact Information:
Pastor Adrian Harper
New Seasons Christian Ministries
www.newseasoncharlotte.org
Office:980/321-7056
Email: pastoradrian@newseasoncharlotte.org
Twitter: @AdrianLHarper

 

Don’t forget to visit www.kennethyelverton.org for your copy of “Sex and the Kingdom,” as well as other products and information on the ministry of Kenneth Yelverton.

 

We welcome your comments below and don’t forget to share this with family, friends and on your social networks. Be Blessed…!

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Road Rules – Part II

Posted by admin dated: August 23, 2013

It’s been some time since writing Part I of “Road Rules,” but I have not forgot my thought process on the subject at hand. It is vitally important that a guest preacher, when invited to another church, be VISION FOCUSED! Pray that God gives you something to share to connect, push and enhance the vision and assignment that God has given to the Senior Leader of that church.

Because God’s vision is always larger than where we are and larger than the present means at our disposal, you always want to share a Word from the Lord that lifts and encourages the people and points them toward the fulfillment of God’s assignment. We place people and Pastors in vicarious situations when we preach something that is totally opposite of what the Lord has declared over that particular house, through the leader. For this cause, prayer is a premium lest the temptation to take your latest “hot” message supersedes the direction of God for the ministry moments. This is not about you preaching the people into a frenzy, but rather it is about building up the people to keep their “hands on the plow,” and the Pastor to “stand on the wall” in the midst of ministry weariness.

As a guest Evangelist, you must be very discernible in your prophecy and altar ministry. It may be a “Word from the Lord,” but it may not be the proper timing or season for that Word to be released over the people. Wisdom says “give that prophetic utterance to the Pastor so that he/she may share at their discretion. The desire to “wow” the people with the accuracy and splendor of your gift sometimes proves to be very damaging when we prematurely and unknowingly “validate” the “Korahs” and enemies of the leadership.

I trust that this short post was both enlightening and confirming. In the next installment of “Road Rules” I want to expand this discussion of excellence “under another man’s ministry.” #StayTuned Peace.

Don’t forget to visit www.kennethyelverton.org for products and updates on the ministry of Bishop Kenneth Yelverton

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Road Rules – Part 1

Posted by admin dated: July 1, 2013

One of the things that I am very much aware of is the “gulf” that exists between preachers who were “fathered” or mentored, versus those who really had no one to provide any “hands on” training, and many times do as they have seen others do.  As a result, many preachers are unaware of certain things as it pertains to ministry and how to conduct themselves properly.  This is especially true when it comes to invitations to serve as guest preachers.  I thought I would take the time to share a few blog post centered around this subject matter and hopefully provide some general guidelines based on things I received from my father and personal experience after preaching over 20 years.  By no means do I profess to know it all, nor does time permit me to share everything from a list that could become very extensive predicated on background and experience of others.  For this reason, I just want to share a few things that I pray prove helpful to those who not only hear this word, but will also strive to be doers so that ultimately pleasing God and representing His Kingdom be the end result.

 

The first and only objective of any guest preacher, in my opinion, should be to bless the church (the people) that invited you to serve!  The fact of the matter is they didn’t have to invite you.  Thank God that He opened that door for you, but conduct yourself like you have good sense and perhaps they will invite you to serve again!  As a guest preacher, you want to leave the church or ministry in a better position than when you came.  It’s nothing worse for the inviting church and Pastor than to have to come behind a guest preacher and “clean up,” correct, and in many cases run “damage control” because of the “mishandling” of the Word of God, and the inappropriate handling of the people in whom he or she is responsible for as Pastor.  Of course, it is the responsibility of the leadership to take prayerful consideration who they invite, and not allow that decision to be governed by anything other than God’s direction.  It’s very sad when a Pastor already knows about the reputation and conduct of a preacher, but then invite the preacher to be a guest anyway, exposing the people of God to foolishness for popularity and financial gain (that’s another post for later).

 

As a guest preacher, you must always remember, you are the INVITED, not the INVITEE…!  In other words, and I might emphasize, IT AIN’T ABOUT YOU, but it’s about the church or ministry that invited you to serve!  You are a depositor, not a rapist…!  You are there to serve and be a representation of God and the Pastor, Bishop and church that you are accountable to.  This will help the word about you to be a positive and very affirming word that enhances your reputation, and more importantly, pleases God as His representative.

 

In Part II of Road Rules, I will be sharing some other points for our consideration, but what are your thoughts thus far?  What would you like to see me address from this subject matter in future post?  Respond and please share with others.  Please visit kennethyelverton.org for more information on the ministry of Bishop Kenneth M. Yelverton

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Coming Out Of The Closet

Posted by admin dated: April 29, 2013

The Agenda For Casual Acceptance

 An NBA player recently “came out of the closet,” and openly confessed and shared being a gay man in a very popular sports magazine.  The article has been circulating through the Internet and become a popular point of discussion on social media.  Several post that I observed on Facebook and Twitter addressed the subject matter with a very nonchalant approach and the response of “who cares.”  Although I know the point of the response is a persons right to do whatever they want, there is, at the same time, another point of emphasis that needs to be addressed, and that is the agenda of the spirit of the world to promote a “casual acceptance” of sin.

 

Although homosexuality is sin, like lying, stealing, fornication, hatred, and many other sins, it stands in direct opposition to the God ordained one man, one-woman biblical definition of marriage.  The more people take the approach of “who cares,” and the more the Church is silent, sits by idle, and doesn’t speak up about homosexuality, the louder and more forceful the “affirming voice” for homosexuality is heard.  While some may say, “it’s none of my business because people can do whatever they want to do,” you must understand you are right where those who promote this agenda want you to be!  The more people “come out of the closet,” the more accepting homosexuality becomes as a viable lifestyle!  However, the Body of Christ must stand united and declare the truth of God’s Word.

 

One of the points the homosexual community declares is that they were “born homosexual.”  The truth of the matter is all of us, regardless of sexual orientation, were “born in sin, and shaped in iniquity (see Psalm 51:4, 5; Romans 3:23).  It is the assignment of the Body of Christ to declare, without wavering, “be born again” (see John 3:3-7).  Homosexuality is creating a very casual environment of acceptance on the grounds of love for all mankind.  Any positive affirmation that you have for the biblical definition of marriage is, all of a sudden, interpreted as hatred, as this blog post will probably be labeled, and that you are “homophobic.”  You cannot say anything about homosexuality or gay marriage, nor can you stand up and declare that you are a person that believes in marriage God’s way or your words will be twisted and turned around that you are spewing hate.

The more people “come out of the closet,” the more Hollywood celebrities and those in high political offices validate homosexuality, the more accepting and affirming the lifestyle becomes.  The Body of Christ must stand boldly and declare just as loud, the principles of God’s Word:

“For this reason God gave them up to vile passions.  For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature.  Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the women, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.”  – Romans 1:26, 27

God has given all of us freewill, and the individual right to do whatever we want to do.  It is my prayer that we all, regardless of what sin you are involved in, would make the freewill decision to accept the gift of eternal life granted and available to us, through the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ.  Peace

Want to read more? “Sex and the Kingdom” – kennethyelverton.org

Sexual Frustration

Posted by admin dated: April 3, 2013

Since the end of January I have been on book tour, traveling to promote the message of “Sex and the Kingdom.” I have been reaching out to a lot of ministry friends, associates and connections, in order to have an opportunity to share the message of this book, and hopefully raise our understanding of human sexuality from a biblical perspective. What I am being confronted with in my travels and in seeking to secure additional tour dates is a great deal of “sexual frustration.” This is not the sexual frustration that is experienced by a lot of couples as it pertains to the quality of their sex life, or lack thereof. This sexual frustration is a result of the difficulty that I have encountered in trying to relay the message of biblical sexuality.

I find it frustrating that in the critical times in which we live, the church by and large continues to take a “mum is the word,” “taboo” approach to sex and sexual matters. As I write, legislation is being challenged in our county’s highest courts as to the definition of marriage. Meanwhile, the Body of Christ’s definition of marriage has been what it has always been; a biblical definition as defined by God our creator. Man can change the laws to accommodate their agenda, but God’s Law and Word remain the same. Once again, at a time when we should stand on the grounds of the Word of God and seek to train and educate ourselves further on the scriptures pertaining to human sexuality and the like, the Church is not just silent, but in many cases even unwilling to entertain the conversation of sex.

I find it frustrating when there’s an inquiry about more information pertaining to the book tour and teachings that I give on “biblical sexuality,” I’m bombarded with questions about what do I exactly say and whether or not it’s a “clean discussion,” or do I use any wording, examples or gestures that could possibly be offensive. Meanwhile we are exposed to a never-ending stream of vulgar, tasteless and “ratchet” sexual imagery on the television, Internet, and in many other aspects of everyday living. Our children and young people are being introduced to sex and sexual matters from there misguided and misinformed peers. I’m experiencing “sexual frustration” because “believers” don’t have a problem watching “R” rated television programming that literally promotes promiscuity, fornication, adultery and the like, but they take issue with the wholesome teachings of “Sex and the Kingdom” and the biblical teaching of sex…? Something is wrong with this picture… I’m ever determined to stay the course and face the uphill challenge, but somebody weigh in, comment below and help me understand…

Signed,

“Sexually Frustrated…”

Order your copy of “Sex and the Kingdom” at www.kennethyelverton.org

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Just Passing By

Posted by admin dated: March 30, 2013

 While Jesus is hanging on the cross, no doubt in excruciating pain, Matthew 27:32 – 44 records three distinctive groups of people that begin to mock Him.

(1) Those that “pass by” and see Him hanging.  (2) The Chief priest, scribes, and Elders (leaders of the people).  And (3) the criminals that He was numbered to die with, one on the left and the other on the right.

      This first group in verses 39 & 40, Matthew labels as those who “pass by.”  This group is comprised of people who had no stake in Jesus death, and perhaps couldn’t care one way or the other.  Like many people today, they were caught up in the theatrics of Jesus’ crowd, and were drawn in by the crowd’s emotions.  Everybody else was shouting, “crucify Him,” so this group just joined in.  They passed judgment on Jesus based on the crowd, the actual scene of the crucifixion, and on what they had apparently heard about Him; they are “just passing by.”  At some point of your life, everybody has to come in contact with those who “just “pass by.” Those who don’t know your whole story, but will “pass by,” and based on their view of your crucifixion, will make a judgment call about you.  They weren’t there when blinded eyes were opened, deaf ears unstopped, or folk brought back from the dead, but they will “pass by,” see you suffering and then make a judgmental comment.

 *Although Jesus says not a word during this time of agony on the cross, we learn a few things through those that pass by along the road.

 (1). Those who pass by and observe your suffering will always challenge your gifts and ability.  It was within Jesus ability and power to come off of the cross, but He chose not to.  They revile Him and challenge His right of authority to come down.  Jesus declared on several occasions, “no man takes my life, I willingly lay it down…” He could have, but He didn’t!  Just because you can, doesn’t mean that it should be done…  Jesus could save Himself, and those who pass by interpret His decision to stay on the cross, as He couldn’t!  We should never allow suffering to limit Christ ability! (Mary and Martha did the very same thing – see John 11:21-27).

 (2). Those who pass by and observe your suffering will make a mockery out of your assignment.  They threw in Jesus face the fact that He said, “destroy this temple, and in 3 days I’ll raise it back up…” They didn’t understand that Jesus was speaking of His death, burial and resurrection (His assignment).  Even today, folk will pass by your life, see what you are going through, and will then belittle your assignment!  “Surely because of the struggle, you missed God, because if it’s God, it shouldn’t be this hard…”  This also speaks of the destruction of a way of thinking, or a way of life without God, and the building of a new life in Christ.  ”If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away…”  When we seek to save ourselves, we inadvertently prevent the destruction of the things that God wants to rebuild!  In fact, if you save yourself, you get to stay like you.  But if you sacrifice yourself, you get to experience something new!

 (3). Folk who pass by your life and observe your suffering will try and make you justify yourself, by proving yourself.  Those that passed by said, “if He is the King of Israel, let Him come down from the cross.”  They said ”IF” just as satan did in the temptation of Jesus at the onset of His ministry.  ”If you are the Son of God…” Prove it by saving yourself…!  However, the real proof is not in saving self, but sacrificing self to save everybody else!  In the wilderness satan tried to tempt Jesus to prove He was the Son of God by turning “turning stones into bread.”  When you know who you are, and whose hand is on your life, you don’t have to validate yourself.  Jesus understood, that if I make bread, I get to feed myself, but if I “BE” bread, I get to feed everybody else!

 Let your critics and naysayers pass by and observe your life, but like Jesus, chose to stay and see the will of the Father all the way through.  Peace and Blessings!

 

Comments: 3

Cold Showers

Posted by admin dated: January 16, 2013

“I’M SINGLE, I LOVE GOD, BUT THIS COLD SHOWER NOT WORKING…!

 WHAT AM I TO DO…?”

The above title comes from a question that was posed to me recently during one of my book tour stops for “Sex and the Kingdom.”  After I dealt with the initial, “caught off guard” look on my face, I proceeding to answer this young lady’s question to the best of my ability.  Of course, one of the things I’m confronted with is the proverbial “you’re married and wouldn’t understand” position that many single people take when questions like this arise.  However, the reality is I have not been married all my life and have not forgotten the difficulty of being a single man trying to please God by “presenting my body a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to Him.”  There were many things I wanted to share with her, but time would not allow me, as is the case in this blog.  In my book, I offer what I feel is wise counsel in the “Five Be-Attitudes of Self Control,” and from that I shared this with her that I believed would help her the most.

Single people must stay focused primarily on two things if they are going to be successful in maintaining themselves until marriage.  (1) Worship must be primary in the life of the single believer.  Without worship as a primary component of your everyday life, the ability to maintain sexual purity is greatly weakened.  You will not be able to maintain self control with a “Sunday only church worship” experience with God.  Everyday you must spend time building your personal relationship with Him.  Everyday you pray, everyday you read the Word of God and spend some quality time with Him.  The more daily worship becomes a part of your life, the greater your chances of maintaining sexual purity.

Not only is worship primary, but (2) work must also be at the forefront of your life as a single person.  What is your “garden responsibility?”  What is the thing that God has graced and gifted you for, and given you an assignment to fulfill?  We have a tendency to forget that before Eve came on the scene, Adam was in essence, a single man.  Before God declared, “it is not good that man should be alone,” He planted a garden in Eden and placed Adam there “to tend and keep it.”  The priority for Adam was to tend, keep or manage the Garden of Eden, which was his assignment before he was instructed, with Eve, to be fruitful and multiply!  As a single person desiring to honor God in the area of sexual integrity, it’s going to be imperative that you stay focused on worship and work!  Someone once said, and I agree, “the idle mind is the devil’s workshop!”  When you don’t have daily worship as a primary part of your life, and when your time, energy and efforts are not work oriented, you place yourself directly in the crosshairs of the enemy to make a presentation to your flesh that no “cold shower” can deter.

Of course there is more I could have shared, but what additional counsel and advice would you give to her and others with similar questions?  Share your thoughts below…

Go to http://www.kennethyelverton.org to order your copy of “Sex and the Kingdom: A Biblical Portrait of Human Sexuality.”

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