Wagging Tail, 1 Thessalonians 5:16

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I intended to write on another topic tonight, but when I was in the bathroom this morning, Buddy joyously greeted me with a wagging tail because I had returned from attending church. He was happy just to see me and be in my company. And it made me feel good because my dog cares about me and wants me around.

It got me thinking, “Am I happy just be in God’s company? Am I rejoicing because I’m  a child of God and know that, through my relationship with Jesus Christ, I will be “rescued from the wrath to come” (1 Thessalonians 1:10)? Am I enjoying God for Who He is and not just what He can give me and those I pray for? Or do in this world?

Jude says that one day I will stand before Him in the Afterlife, “blameless with great joy. (Jude 1:24).” Apostle Paul also echoes this in Colossians 1:22, “He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach.”

Because Jesus died for my sin, I don’t have to fear approaching God. He now sees me clothed in the “righteousness of Christ” and “as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us (Psalm 103: 12).” Jesus encouraged prayer and making requests of God. To see Him as our Father, our encourager and our comforter. King David often poured his heart out to God to find comfort and strength in his suffering and travails, as written down in the Psalms. Apostle John frequently emphasized in his letters that God is love and loves us: “See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God (1 John 3:1).”

Apostle Peter also encouraged us to open our hearts in prayer to God, “casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).”

After the walls of Jerusalem were rebuilt, the Jewish people wept because of their nation’s sin which had caused God to allow the destruction of their city by the Babylonians in 586 BC. But God admonished them, telling them to rejoice instead. “Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”–Nehemiah 8:10

I know Psalm 100 by heart. But it’s time that I try harder to apply, with God’s guidance, this great Psalm’s encouragement to enjoy God:

“Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth. Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing…Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. For the Lord is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations.”

Because God is good and loves me, I can enjoy His presence: through prayer and giving thanks, rejoicing in my blessings, in this beautiful world and family and friends and living in a wonderful country. Instead of focusing on the hurt and trouble and evil in the world.

Or as the shorter version of the Westminster Catechism teaches:

“Man’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy him forever.”

Have a blessed week.

***

God loves you and sent Jesus to die for your sins. You can become a child of God and enjoy His presence by admitting you are a sinner. Why must you do that? Because, when Adam and Eve ate the apple, they were telling God that they didn’t need His advice on how to live, they were going to decide it for themselves. As a result of rejecting Him, God’s Holy Spirit left the human race and so every generation has been born separated from God since. When you ask God to forgive your sin, you’re admitting to Him that you don’t have all the answers and want His guidance and presence in your life, that you want Him to be your great Shepherd and leader. Please ask Him to forgive your sins and ask Him to fill you with the Holy Spirit, to guide your through His Word, the Bible, on how to live this life. He’s waiting for your invitation to let Him enter into your life and heart.

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to Him, and will dine with him, and he with Me.”–Revelation 3:20

Please open your heart to Him for “God is love” (1 John 4:16).

 

 

 

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The Danger of Pursuing Evil, Proverbs 11:27b

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It doesn’t help to have the most uncooperative dog to feature in a blog. Buddy hates getting his picture taken and refuses to look at me when I am holding the camera. I have to trick him into looking at me and, as you can see above, he didn’t take the bait.

Since it is October a friend and I watched a DVD of “The Wolfman” featuring Benicio Del Toro. Apparently it bombed at the box office when it came out in the theaters in 2010, but it’s one of my favorite horror movies. It has no sex and swearing, although there is some gore. I enjoy a good monster movie if it isn’t overly scary, because I don’t believe in vampires, werewolves or other monsters. But I generally avoid movies about ghosts, demons and witches because I believe there are real forces of evil in this world that should not be taken lightly.

Proverbs 11:27b warns: “he who seeks evil, evil will come to him.”

In my opinion, the movie “The Wolfman” is a cautionary tale against seeking out evil. And the conquering power of love over evil. (Spoiler alert: If you haven’t seen the movie and want to, you might want to stop reading.)

Sir John Talbot is on a hunting expedition with his friends in India when the natives tell him about a “strange creature” that lives in the mountains. He spends several days hunting down this legendary creature until he comes upon a feral boy in a cave, stricken with the disease of lycanthropy. After being bitten by the “creature”, Sir John believes he’s the “butt of a joke” until, after returning to England, he transforms into a werewolf and murders his wife.

Sir John considered suicide to escape his monstrous existence, but life was “too glorious, especially to the curse and the damned”. Not once is forgiveness and deliverance in Jesus Christ considered; instead, he ultimately embraces his wickedness. Because Sir John didn’t take evil seriously, many other people are killed, including both his sons, ending his hereditary lineage. “But transgressors will be altogether destroyed; The posterity of the wicked will be cut off.”–Psalm 37:38

Sir John attacks his son, Lawrence, infecting him with lycanthropy, also. Although earlier in the movie, Lawrence states that a person can get used to any lifestyle, including his debauched stage actor life, he never embraces the evil lifestyle of a werewolf with its great sense of power and strength. He escapes his fate by being shot with a silver bullet by Gwen Conliffe, a woman who loves him. As he dies, Lawrence thanks Gwen for having the courage to rescue him. Only love delivers him from his wretched Satanic curse.

The best horror movies are cautionary tales about good and evil. And it’s my humble opinion that the best movies are ones which demonstrate the triumph of good over evil. I really dislike movies in which a person’s good deed is rewarded by being murdered by the monster (“Jeepers Creepers”, for instance).

God warns us in Deuteronomy 18:10-11 to stay away from the occult:

“There shall not be found among you anyone…who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.”

Far too many people ignore these warnings and get involved in tarot card reading, horoscopes, Ouija boards, palm reading, seances, drug use, and the like. God warns us not to get involved with such things, not because He doesn’t want us to have fun, but because it can invite Satanic powers into our lives. And He doesn’t want us to be in bondage to evil. Sir John Talbot thought hunting down the creature in the mountains was just a lark; he didn’t take evil seriously, even after he was bitten. As a result, his and many other lives were destroyed.

Some authors, I believe, are morally confused because they don’t know Jesus Christ.

The problem is: Only the word of God can help us to discern good from evil. When Adam and Eve rejected God’s authority in their lives by disobeying Him, their offspring, divorced from the indwelling presence of their Creator, lost the ability to truly know good from evil. When ancient Israel, living in the Promised Land, rejected the God of the Bible, they turned to human sacrifice and other abominations, shedding innocent blood. (Psalm 106:35-38)

Humanity became cursed and under the dominion of Satan, by rejecting the Creator. But God brought humanity back into a relationship with Himself by sending Christ to take the punishment for our sin, conquering Satan and the fear of death on the Cross.

“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom have have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God..And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach…”

This Halloween, please claim the victory that Jesus Christ and His love gives us over the power of evil–evil within ourselves and the evil in the world.

God bless you from Dawn and Buddy

***

If you want to know Jesus Christ, please pray: Dear Father, I acknowledge that I cannot earn my way to Heaven because no one is good enough to meet your perfect standard. I’ll never be good enough. Only Jesus lived the perfect life; He alone was sufficient to take the penalty for my sin. I ask that you forgive my sin. I believe that Jesus is Immanuel, God in the flesh, and took the punishment for my sin. Please grant me the gift of the Holy Spirit; help me to discern good from evil. Be my Good Shepherd; guide me into all righteousness. In Jesus’ holy name, amen.

If you prayed this prayer, please find a Bible-based church to grow in the knowledge of Jesus and to find fellowship with other Christians. Also, please get a Bible and start reading. I suggest starting in the New Testament with Matthew and reading your way through to the end. Then try the Psalms and then Proverbs. Then start back at the beginning with Genesis. There are some boring passages in the Old Testament, so I don’t recommend starting your Christian life at the beginning of the Bible.

Ghosts, Luke 16:26

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When Buddy turned 10 years old this past August, it was rather traumatic to me. It was a reminder that I won’t always have my little pal living with me, as he is in his second decade now.

I believe that there are three main reasons that people want to believe in ghosts: a morbid fascination with the occult/supernatural, a desire for proof of life after death and missing loved ones.

Before the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, when the apostles were being trained by Jesus, they demonstrated a belief in ghosts. In one of the most famous stories in the New Testament, Jesus goes to the mountain to pray and leaves the apostles, so they begin to row across the sea to Bethsaida without Him. Later, during that windy night, Jesus walks toward them on the water, frightening them greatly as they believe they are seeing a ghost (Matthew 14:22-26, Mark 6:47-50). Jesus tells them they don’t need to be afraid and gets into the boat; immediately the wind stops. Yet the apostles don’t get it, that Jesus is God Who can do anything, even walk on the water. (Jesus had just earlier fed 5,000 men plus women and children with five loaves of bread and two fish.)

Jesus did NOT censure them for believing in ghosts.

True confession: I believe ghosts are real.

But they aren’t what is typically depicted in movies.

Over the years, dramatized in movies and television shows, there have been cute and friendly ghosts–“Topper”–or romantic, handsome ghosts–“The Ghost And Mrs. Muir”–and downright nasty and frightening ghosts–“The Amityville Horror”.

I love my beloved Buster, the Silky terrier who preceded Buddy, in 2009. I wish he could come visit, but he cannot. Neither can my grandmother Vera, with whom I was very close my entire life till her death in 2010.

Jesus tells the story in Luke 16:19-31 about a rich man and a poor man named Lazarus (not the one He resurrected out of the tomb). The rich man lived luxuriously while poor, suffering Lazarus lay at his gate, starving and longing for some crumbs from the rich man’s table. Lazarus was in such a wretched state that even dogs licked at his wounds.

Both men die. The rich man goes into the eternal torment of Hades while the poor man finds comfort with Abraham, the patriarch of the Jewish people. (Note that the rich man may have made a great name for himself on earth but isn’t remembered by name for posterity; his efforts to be remembered didn’t last past his death.)

In the afterlife there exists a great chasm between the place of torment and the heavenly place of comfort, yet the inhabitants of both locations are capable of not only seeing one another but also communicating with each other. (I believe this changes after Judgment Day, however.) “In Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom (verse 23).” Although he did nothing to ease Lazarus’s suffering on earth, he dares to ask Abraham to allow Lazarus to venture down to Hades “that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool off my tongue, for I am in agony in this flame (verse 24)”. Abraham admonishes him, saying that he had lived his good life and shouldn’t expect Lazarus to come down and help him out.

But Abraham also states that it was not possible for Lazarus to come relieve the rich man’s suffering in Hades, even if he wanted to.

“Between us and you there is a great chasm fixed, so that those who wish to come over from here to you will not be able, and that none may cross over from there to us (verse 26).”

There is no possibility for people, after they have died, to leave their appointed destination.

Now apparently the rich man, though totally inconsiderate of the woeful state of the poor man suffering outside his magnificent villa, must not have been totally depraved as he longed for Abraham to return to earth and warn his five brothers so that “they will not also come to this place of torment (verse 28).” Although he was suffering greatly, he still thought about the welfare of his family.

What I believe is that ghosts are demonic spirits. They will appear to be anything that a person will accept in order to enter into a person’s life to cause them harm. Satan himself will “disguise himself as an angel of light” to deceive people (2 Corinthians 11:14). If you believe in ghosts, they will appear as ghosts. If you believe in fairies, elves or genies (jinns), they will come to you in the guise of fairies, elves and genies.  If you believe in aliens, they will appear as aliens. Author and novelist Whitney Strieber, famous for his nonfiction novel, “Communion” and accompanying follow-up series of books, finally came to the conclusion, as do many paranormal investigators, that the alien phenomenon was likely the manifestation of the paranormal.

Satan enters into a person’s life “to kill, steal and destroy”, but that Jesus comes into a person’s life so that “they may have life, and have it abundantly.”–John 10:10. Apostle John warns in 1 John 4:1 not to “believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God.” Satan is a deceiver, and so are his demonic followers. Apparently there are differing levels of evil in the demons, as the most dangerous are being kept bound till they are released in the End Times to wreak havoc on earth.

People who reject Jesus become fascinated with the supernatural. They “resort to idols and ghosts of the dead and to mediums and spiritists” (Isaiah 19:3); in this verse, preoccupation with occultism is a curse from God.

God wants us to be preoccupied with Him, the source of “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Galatians 6:22).

Be preoccupied with the source of life, Jesus Christ, the “author and finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2)” who sits “in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And He put all things in subjection under His feet…” (Ephesians 1:20-22).

God bless. And if you miss a loved one who has departed from this life, may He comfort you.

Love from Dawn and Buddy

***

Jesus showed that He loves you by taking the punishment for your sin. You see, God understands that you can never measure up to His perfect standard for entering Heaven into His presence, 100% holiness, so He sent His Son to pay the penalty for what you could never pay. Please ask Jesus to be your Lord and enter into your life. Confess that you fall short and need His resurrection life. Ask Him to give you the abundant life and meaning and purpose you seek.

Why The Flood Still Matters, 2 Peter 3:9

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As I detailed in an earlier posting, Buddy was so proud of himself when he grabbed my donut that I had left on my bed one morning instead of eating for breakfast. When I returned from work, he proudly greeted me with his prize. I laughed; after all, it was my fault. Buddy didn’t deserve punishment for only retrieving what I’d forgotten.

God is the same way with us. He is not eager to punish humanity for its sin. “For God sent His Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but the save the world” (John 3:17). God loves us, yet He hates sin. So He sent Jesus to take our punishment for His anger at our wickedness.

Apostle Peter echoes Apostle John’s words in his second letter to the church. He warns them that in the last days before Christ’s return, people will mock God, saying that because Christ has not yet returned, there is no coming Judgment. History flows along as it always has, with humanity in charge.

“But when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that…the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water.”–2 Peter 3:5

I wasn’t raised Christian and struggled with the concept that an all powerful God could come down as a man and live amongst us. I read the “Origin of the Species” by Charles Darwin and a biography on Darwin, in an attempt to embrace atheism after some negative experiences with Christians I’d met who were a little too eager to convert me. But I’d had two years of biology in high school, plus a math teacher who emphasized logic, and noticed there was quite a lot that was unscientific about Darwin’s book and a lot of unverified fact that was assumed and mere conjecture.

When I took a course in Mythology at the University of Washington, I expected to learn about Greek and Roman mythology. Instead, I had a professor who seemed hellbent on discrediting Christianity. She mentioned that every culture in the world had a flood myth.

“Wait a second,” I thought. “If there really was a flood, wouldn’t every culture in the world have a remnant memory of it, passed down through the generations? If there wasn’t a flood, I’d expect many cultures NOT to have a flood myth. Yet my professor just said every culture had one.”

My now deceased uncle was a college professor, so I knew better than to believe unquestionably everything my instructors told me at the University of Washington. I maintained my intellectual discernment when listening to lectures–thinking critically, not just swallowing everything I was told without mulling it over first.

This incident was the turning point in my life on a path toward coming into a relationship with the true and living God about 5 years later.

I believe so many unbelievers are insistent on discrediting the existence of the flood–and to discredit the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah–because they want to deny that there is a judgment after death and that they’re accountable for how they live their lives. Despite the fact that there are fossils of sea life in unlikely places, like mountain tops, and that dinosaur remains are discovered in piles in alluvial sediment, as if swept away by a vast push of water and deposited.

Yet, the Bible tells us:

“it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment,”–Hebrews 9:27

“Then I saw a great throne (in heaven) and Him who sat upon it…And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds…And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.”–Revelation 20:11-15

God delays judgment, however, because He loves each one of us and wants us to repent and reconnect with Him. I believe this is why we sometimes feel frustrated, wondering why evil people continue to act wickedly and don’t seem to be punished: God is giving them a chance to turn their lives around. He isn’t eager to discipline anyone.

“For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies,” declares the Lord. “Therefore, repent and live.”–Ezekiel 18:32

It’s really easy to escape this judgment.

“And it shall be that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”–Apostle Peter, Acts 2:21

“Unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”–Jesus, John 8:24

When you recognize that you’re a sinner who cannot earn your way to Heaven, because you’re not able to meet God’s perfect standard, and call upon the name of Jesus, believing that He is God in the flesh, Who took the punishment for God’s wrath at sin, you’re saved.

“We maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law.”–Apostle Paul, Romans 3:28

“For by grace you have been saved though faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that n one can boast.”–Ephesians 2:8-9

To illustrate:

God, 100% perfection, is on one side of a cliff and flawed humanity is on the other side, two miles apart. Between us is a deep gorge, the bottom so far down that even Wile E. Coyote would be afraid to tie an Acme rocket to his back. Some people, because they are really good people, try to jump across and make it maybe twelve feet, then plunge to the bottom. Some people, because they are sorta good and sorta bad, are able to jump eight feet and then plunge to the bottom. Some people are so bad and nasty, they cannot jump at all and just trip and fall to the bottom.

The point is, no matter how good you are, you cannot jump far enough because the only way to get across to stand before a 100% loving and holy God is to be 100% good. For example, you blew it the first time you yelled, “No!” at your mother when she asked you to do something (or your guardian, if you weren’t raised by your mother).

But Jesus stands in the gap, his arms stretching out toward both sides, connecting the two cliff faces. You can walk toward Heaven across His holy arms.

If you have trouble believing, just start on that road by asking Him to give you the faith to believe. He loves that prayer and will answer.

God bless you.

From Dawn and Buddy

***

PS. Many thanks to WordPress for allowing us freedom of speech. There are a lot of issues with social media platforms discriminating against speech their founders don’t approve of. Thankfully there is still someplace people can still blog freely. If you don’t like my blog posts, just don’t read them or don’t follow me. I won’t be offended. I believe in freedom.

Why Adam and Eve Still Matter, Genesis 3:1

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Sometimes Buddy is reluctant to obey when I call him into the house. He loves snooping around the backyard, investigating whether some doggoned possum, cat, mouse or rat has been intruding upon his territory. But, when I’m insistent, he listens to me and comes through the back door. I make sure that I praise him profusely to encourage him to continue to obey me. He obeys me because he loves and trusts me.

Why is Adam and Eve still relevant today?

The main point of the story about the Temptation and Fall of Humanity when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil is: They stopped trusting God and wanted to determine for themselves what was right and wrong, instead of listening to what the God of Love (1 John 4:16) defined what was right and wrong.

Satan began his temptation with the statement, “Indeed, has God said,…?”–Genesis 3:1

Lucifer tempted Adam and Eve to distrust that God was truthful and knew what was best for them, that He was a good God Who should be obeyed.

I think our society is in chaos right now because too many people no longer believe that the Bible is the standard for defining what is right and wrong. They have become their own gods, defining morality for themselves.

“Thou shalt not bear false witness”  —Indeed, has God said? (Exodus 20:16)

“You should not slander.”–Indeed, has God said? (Leviticus 19:16)

“You shall not hate your fellow countryman in your heart;”–Indeed, has God said? (Leviticus 19:17)

Justice is to be impartial, not favoring the poor nor deferring to the great.–Indeed, has God said? (Leviticus 19:15)

Humankind, male and female, are made by God in His image.–Indeed, has God said? (Genesis 1:27)

“Every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment.”–Indeed, has God said? (Jesus, Matthew 12:36)

There will be a great Judgment of everyone after death, “everyone was judged according to their deeds.”–Indeed, has God said? (Revelation 20:12-16)

Jesus is God in the flesh.–Indeed, has God said? (Matthew 1:23)

Judgment can be escaped through faith in Jesus Christ, which is not earned, but a gift from God.–INDEED, HAS GOD SAID? Satan screams. (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Jesus took upon Himself the punishment for our sins on the Cross and was resurrected to give us eternal life.–INDEED, HAS GOD SAID??? (John 3:16)

God is love. We don’t need to be afraid of Him.–I HATE GOD!! Satan screams. (Luke 1:74)

God bless you from Dawn and Buddy

***

Truly, my life was transformed after I gave my heart to Jesus March 7th, 1989. I’m far from perfect, but when I obey what is right as defined in the Bible, the greatest book of Wisdom ever written, rather than follow my selfish desires, my life’s path is less rocky than it would be otherwise. Please consider asking Jesus into your life right now, to be your Lord and forgive your sins. Becoming a born-again Christian won’t guarantee you an easy life, but it’s a decision you will never regret making.

 

Dogs Go To Heaven, Revelation 5:13

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The day that Buddy dies will be an awful day for me and my family as, the longer he lives with us, the more personality he exhibits as he increasingly relaxes around us. He is the most vocal dog we’ve ever had and is quite clear when he wants something. Naturally, I love the ecstatic joy of greeting Buddy gives me when I return home, even from a short trip.

This wasn’t what I originally planned to write about tonight, but close friends lost their dog unexpectedly last Friday. Poppy, an adopted dog, was older than they had been told by the dog pound and had to be put to sleep for liver cancer. I grieve for them as I understand how much they cared for Poppy. She was a very friendly and loving dog.

Although I will greatly miss Buddy one day, if I don’t precede him in death, I truly believe that he will go to Heaven and join my greatly missed grandmother Vera and beloved Buster (my other Silky terrier pal).

What I can never understand are Christians who delight in telling others that animals absolutely do not go to Heaven. Firstly, I don’t understand why they get pleasure out of discouraging grieving people instead of being silent and keeping it to themselves. But, secondly, why they believe so emphatically that God doesn’t care about animals or love them. So many Christians seem to believe that you can care about people or animals, but not both.

Odd, as God created all animal life and called it “good” (Genesis 1:20-25).

When God flooded the earth, He saved not just Noah and his family, but also “every living thing of all flesh, you shall bring two of every kind into the ark, to keep them alive with you…” (Genesis 6:19). God filled the earth, not just once, but twice with animals. He also made his rainbow covenant promise not to destroy the earth again with a flood not only with humanity, but also with animals too (Genesis 9:11-16).

The prophet Isaiah pictures animals in harmony with humankind and each other in the Millenniel Kingdom. In fact, animals are a key feature of this thousand year reign of Jesus after Armageddon.

“And the wolf will dwell with the lamb, And the leopard will lie down with the young goat, And the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; And a little boy will lead them. Also the cow and the bear will graze, Their young will lie down together. And the lion will eat straw like the ox. The nursing child will play by the hole of the cobra…They will not hurt or destroy in all My holy mountain, For the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord, As the waters cover the sea.”–Isaiah 11:6-9

When Jesus is pictured in Heaven he sits on “a white horse” (Revelation 19:11). He also enters Jerusalem upon a donkey’s colt on His final journey toward the Crucifixion (John 12:15).

Authors Gary Kurz and Niki Behrikis Shanahan have ministries from a Biblical perspective comforting people who have lost their pets. I consulted their books in 2009 when my best pal Buster died. They point out that when Jesus went into the wilderness to fast for forty days before his temptation by Satan, “He was with the wild beasts…” This was mentioned only in the book of Mark, but this apostle liked to point out how powerful Jesus was, so he might naturally be thinking about the company the Lord kept while he shunned human companionship.

Just a few examples, but clearly our Lord and Savior has no aversion to animals.

There are quite a few new books on pets and Heaven listed online with far more detail than what I’ve covered above, but the below verse is one I treasure. It shows animals in Heaven praising God:

“And EVERY created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, “To Him Who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.”–Apostle John, vision of Heaven, Revelation 5:13 (Emphasis on EVERY is mine.)

If this verse only applied to humans, it would say “every man and woman” or “humanity”, not “every created thing.”

I can just picture oinks and meows and chirps and quacks and heehaws and roars and…a myriad creatures singing in perfect harmony with their diverse voices, just like a symphony with brass horns and violins and drums and harps, creating one lovely melody in praise of God.

And the barks of dogs, of course.

Love from Dawn and Buddy

PS. I miss you Buster. You were my soulmate dog. I’ll see you again one day. For now, you’re keeping Grandma and her beloved pets company, along with my other past pals (Louie and Penny and Peaches and Rambo and Gumby and Pokie and Spunky and Skippy and Squeaky and…)

***

God loves animals–and He loves you and wants a relationship with you. He wants to be Your Heavenly Father, advising you on the best way to live. But as long as you insist on deciding what is right and wrong for yourself, you cannot fellowship with Him. He wants to be your Lord. Are you ready to give your life and commit to Him so that you can stand in Heaven one day, listening to the symphony of animals praising God, “blameless with great joy” (Jude 1:24)? If so, please pray the following:

Lord Father, I acknowledge that I’ve offended You by my sin. I want to change. I confess that Jesus is the Lord, God in the flesh, who died for the punishment of my sin in my place and was resurrected to give me eternal life. Please forgive my sin and enter into my life. Be my Lord and Great Shepherd. I want to follow You. Make me a new creation through the power of the Holy Spirit. Help me to understand how much You love me and care about me. Be my life, my Helper, and my strength. In the mighty name of Jesus, the name above all names. Amen.

If you said this prayer, congratulations for entering God’s kingdom. Please find a Bible believing church and an accurate translation of the Bible so that you can grow in an understanding of your salvation and who God is, not what the mainstream media or Hollywood says He is. See you upstairs.

Seeking Only Treats, John 6:26-27

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Buddy enjoys USA made turkey jerky dog treats. I am very careful about the quality of treats I feed him because I love Buddy and want him to be healthy and long lived. However, it would grieve me if, the only time I ever saw him, was when I opened up a bag of treats. I want Buddy to love spending time with me and like me for who I am.

Dogs are great in that they accept you for who you are, despite your physical appearance or personality. They love unconditionally.

After Jesus miraculously fed 5,000 people and their families by multiplying the 2 fish and five barley loaves a boy offered to Him, He and His disciples took a boat across the sea to Capernaum.  The next morning the crowd noticed that Jesus was gone and followed Him across the sea.

“Jesus answered them and said, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endues to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.'”–John 6:26-27

Jesus was admonishing the crowd that they followed Him across the sea, not because they recognized who He was–God in flesh come to visit them–but because He fed them.

God often tests us to see if we are following Him for the treats or because we recognize Who He is–God, our Creator, our Shepherd, our Lord. I believe that is why He often delays answering our prayers: to test whether we are following Him because we love and acknowledge He is Lord, or because we just want treats from Him. If He withholds our treats, will we continue to follow Him or walk away?

By continuing to follow Him even though we don’t see some of our prayers being answered, we are acknowledging He is the boss and not us, that He is worthy of our worship and praise and love for who He is, not just for being a great treat dispenser.

It seems that there is a lot of emphasis in some mainline churches on getting rich or prosperous by following God, rather than becoming more loving people and loving God. Seems to me that they would quickly fall away in times of trial or hardship, or any mild persecution. Sad as we approach the time of the dominion of the AntiChrist, many will likely fall away when following Christ becomes a matter of choosing life or death. I’m reminded of the many Christians in the Middle East and Nigeria who have lost their lives, not because they are bad people, but only because they are Christians.

It grieves me deeply and I encourage you to pray for them to be delivered from their persecutors.

But treats are nice. I love treats.

I’m still waiting for my big prayers to be answered, but He does toss me a few little treats every day to keep me encouraged that He is listening to me.

Right now Buddy is keeping me company, sans treats, because he seems to like being around me.

God bless you.

From Dawn and Buddy

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I don’t compose my blogs because I think I’m holier than anyone else and am especially qualified to give advice. I fall short every day of God’s high standards and need His gracious kindness extended to me continually. I just love God and want to share my thoughts about Who He is and how He works in our lives. And encourage you to join me in fellowship with Him. He loves you and wants to shine His light into the darkness in your life.