A daily Christian thought from:
ACP, The Church for the American Christian who is a Patriot
Pro-Christ, Pro-Life, Pro-Constitution.

Pastor Robert M. Celeste MCAC
Today's Christian thought: Wednesday May 19th, 2004

No prophet is accepted in his own country

There is probably no tougher form of evangelism than that in which you try to reach your own immediate family, brothers, sisters, dad, mom, uncles, aunts, cousins, etc with the Gospel of Christ. There are a number of things we shall learn in Luke Chapter Four, but two of the most important are: As Jesus knew and demonstrated for us, family is very hard to preach to. And second, there comes a time when we must let them go and focus on the commission and the mission field the Lord has assigned us. I want to say this to you again, for it is good for you to understand and search for yourselves. There is not one verse in the Bible that indicates that any of Jesus's earthly blood relatives, other than His half brothers James and Jude, ever were Saved or will be in heaven. There is not one verse in the entire Bible that suggest that Jesus's earthly mother Mary is in heaven. I don't object to many of you referring to Mary as the queen of heaven I just cannot help but wonder what Scripture you base it on.

We will see in verse 24 the Lord saying "No prophet is accepted in his own country." And in verse 44 saying "I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also: for therefore am I sent." Jesus could have spent His entire 3.5 years of earthly preaching trying to convince Mary, Joseph and His half brothers and sisters that He is indeed the Messiah, but He didn't and if He had, were would we be? And if you limit yourself to trying to reach your brothers, sisters, dad and mom, where will those be who God has assigned you to reach?

Where would I be if Chicky Nolan, back when I was 10, had kept his 10 year old preaching to himself? Chicky planted the seed. Where would I be if Abraham Murray Cohen had kept his peace and his preaching to his own family back in 1972? Abe dunged the seed that Chicky had planted. Where would I be if Ernie Lowell had kept his preaching to his own and put profit above evangelizing me back in 1988? Ernie watered that seed that Chicky had planted and Abe had dunged. Maybe I would have found salvation on my own, but then again maybe I wouldn't have. And if I hadn't, were would many of you be?

I know it's hard to turn your evangelical attention away from family and focus on strangers, Jesus knew it was hard as well, but He did it, so, should not we? Yesterday I spent and hour or so with Marcel, I don't know if Marcel is Saved or not yet, but this I do know, he listens, he is seeking the truth, my brother Rick on the other hand will neither listen nor seek. So who is my real brother? Is it not Marcel who seeks to serve Him who I serve? I have spent hundreds of hours with Timmy, I don't know if Timmy has accepted the Lord yet, but this I do know, he listens, even when my words hurt him, he listens. My cousins Ken and John whom I love as brothers, don't listen nor will they give me a chance to reach out to them.

I have spent hours trying to reach a young waitress in a restaurant near the tracks on Route 26 in South Paris, Maine. She is young, she is pretty, she wants to be popular, yet she does not turn away from my mini sermons to her. But my own sister, Jean, says "Oh Bobby,..."

Will I rejoice when Marcel, Timmy or the young waitress surrender their lives to the Lord and truly become Born Again Washed in the Blood of the Lamb Christians? You can bet your life I will, but how much more I would rejoice if Rick, Jean, Ken or John did. And just as the Lord left His home and reached out to others, Chicky reached out to me, as Abe left synagogue and family and preached to me, as Ernie found the time to spend hours with me at the expense of spending time with his own family and attending to his business, so must you do as the Lord commands and reach out to strangers.

Let us go to Luke Chapter Four

1 And Jesus, being full of the Holy Ghost, returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, 2 being forty days tempted of(by) the devil. And in those (40) days He did eat nothing: and when they were ended, He afterward hungered.

3 And the devil said unto Him, "If thou be the Son of God, command this stone that it be made bread." 4 And Jesus answered him, saying, It is written, That man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.

5 And the devil, taking Him up into an high mountain, shewed unto Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. 6&7 And the devil said unto Him, "All this power will I give Thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it. If Thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be Thine." 8 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind Me, satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve. How can you follow if you don't listen and how can you listen if you don't go to the Lord in prayers saying "Lord here am I , what would You have me to do?"

9 And he brought Him to Jerusalem, and set Him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said unto Him, "If Thou be the Son of God, cast Thyself down from hence: 10 For it is written, He shall give His angels charge over Thee, to keep Thee: 11 And in their hands they shall bear Thee up, lest at any time Thou dash Thy foot against a stone." 12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. You neither want to tempt nor disobey the Lord your God. And how will you know if you are doing either if you don't go to the Lord your God in prayer listening for that still small voice that is His?

13 And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from Him for a season (awhile). 14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of Him through all the region round about. 15 And He taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all. Have you ever wondered why God uses the term "a season" instead of saying 3 months 4 days and 23 minutes? Or some other time frame? It is so that we keep looking for Him and certain signs of the times. Had He said, instead of "a season" 3 years and 3 months, satan would have known when the Lord was going to allow His crucifixion as prophesied starting back in Genesis chapter three. And that is probably all His disciples would have focused on.

16 And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up: and, as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. 17 And there was delivered unto Him the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written, 18 THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME, BECAUSE HE HATH ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR; HE HATH SENT ME TO HEAL THE BROKENHEARTED, TO PREACH DELIVERANCE TO THE CAPTIVES, AND RECOVERING OF SIGHT TO THE BLIND, TO SET AT LIBERTY THEM THAT ARE BRUISED, 19 TO PREACH THE ACCEPTABLE YEAR OF THE LORD. (Isaiah 61:1&part of 2) 20 And He closed the book, and He gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on Him. 21 And He began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears. Those that heard the Lord that day must have been absolutely amazed, here they were hearing a Man whom they knew as an unlearned, unstudied, son of a carpenter, preaching God's word in a way that they had never heard it preached, preached as the Author and not just a reader. And it scared them to no end. For here was preaching, for the first time, that focused on the word of God, not some rabbinical commentary. They had been used to the politically correct garbage handed down from high priest to minion to lower minion to lower minion. And here this day they were hearing the truth of the Scriptures with no "well this is what God really meant to say" commentary. And it was coming from a carpenters apprentice.

22 And all bare Him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth. And they said, Is not this Joseph's son? 23 And He said unto them, Ye will surely say unto Me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in Thy country.

24 And He said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country. 25 But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land; 26 But unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow. 27 And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian. Starting in verse 26, we see, leaving family and friends and going out and preaching where God send you.

28 And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath, 29 and rose up, and thrust Him out of the city, and led Him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong. 30 But He passing through the midst of them went His way, 31 And came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee, and taught them on the sabbath days. Sometimes I cannot help but wonder who the bigger fools are, those back in 30AD who heard and saw Jesus, or the liberal preachers and their congregations today who while calling themselves Christians, deny the very principals of Christ.

32 And they were astonished at His doctrine: for His word was with power. 33 And in the synagogue there was a man, which had a spirit of an unclean devil, and cried out with a loud voice, 34 saying, "Let us alone; what have we to do with Thee, Thou Jesus of Nazareth? art Thou come to destroy us? I know Thee who Thou art; the Holy One of God." 35 And Jesus rebuked Him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him! And when the devil had thrown him in the midst, he came out of him, and hurt him not. 36 And they were all amazed, and spake among themselves, saying, "What a word is this! for with authority and power He commandeth the unclean spirits, and they come out." 37 And the fame of Him went out into every place of the country round about. Now go back and read verse 32 to 37 again, for I want to tell you a story, but for you to truly grasp it, you need to re read 32-37 again. Ready? Ok, here we go:

Yesterday I went for my somewhat annual physical. My doctor, as is most if not all of his office, are unsaved heathens. Oh they are nice folks but lost as all get out. What is amazing about that is that God, has shown this medical group and their staff, miracle after miracle after miracle through my wife and myself. For any doctor to have our medical records and not see the power of God is not only amazing, but borders on insanity. Without getting into to much detail, let me just give you and example. Back on July 10th, 1995 I had what is called a perforated ulcer. This happened in rural Maine, it took over an hour to get me to the hospital, and once there, they had no idea what was wrong with me. After a few hours of pain and tests, they decided that I had a perforated ulcer, they also decided that it was too dangerous to move me. But, unfortunately there was no doctor around who had ever treated, never mind operated on a perforated ulcer.

So, Doctor Andalkar operated, book in hand, he operated. Now once they discovered what was wrong they really moved fast, in doing so they broke one of my vocal cords. That's ok, for after all, God in His wonder made vocal cords redundant by giving us two of them. But, my stomach acids had eaten up the other one. Now that isn't good, for now I had both vocal cords damaged beyond repair. That means no talking. By the way did I mention that during the six or so hours that I was laying around waiting to be operated on, in addition to having a very long and real conversation with the Lord that centered around my confessing and repenting and oh ya, a little begging, the nerve that controls my voice and ability to speak also burnt up thanks to the stomach acids running rampart throughout my interior.

Got the picture? There is no way I am ever going to talk again, the chances are very real that I am not even going to make it through the operation. Yet, six months later God restored my voice.

The Sunday before Christmas in 1999, I was brought into the same hospital with the same identical problem, this time, in front of the surgeon, I and Rev. Lester Kringle prayed, we prayed for no pain and healing. The surgeon took me down to the operating room, and an hour later I woke up in my room, God had healed my stomach. The doctors comments: "those things happen".

So, as you reread 32 to 37, think to yourself of the times God has used you to open the eyes of others, sometimes their eyes are opened, others, tragically, they are not. Just as some stood around and were nothing more than amazed and entertained back in 30AD, so it is today. Just keep praying for them. Yesterday I put my hand on Bill's, that's my doctors name, shoulder. I did it so that today I could ask the Lord to touch Bill's heart as I touched his shoulder, to open this pig headed blinded doctor's eyes, but not his only, his and Dr. Bob Beans, Dr. Andalkars and the others as well and their staffs. And my cousin David's for David is a doctor and he has the medical records and knows the whole story as well, but continues to insist on serving the pope.

38 And He arose out of the synagogue, and entered into Simon's house. And Simon's wife's mother was taken with a great fever; and they besought Him for her. 39 And He stood over her, and rebuked the fever; and it left her: and immediately she arose and ministered unto them.

40 Now when the sun was setting, all they that had any sick with divers diseases brought them unto Him; and He laid his hands on every one of them, and healed them. 41 And devils also came out of many, crying out, and saying, "Thou art Christ the Son of God." And He rebuking them suffered them not to speak: for they knew that He was Christ. Notice how some say "Thou are the Christ" and are Saved, others say it and are damned. Not all preachers that profess to be Christians are my brothers and sisters, it is up to you to go to the Lord to find out who is who. Remember, your salvation is your responsibility.

42 And when it was day, He departed and went into a desert place: and the people sought Him, and came unto Him, and stayed Him, that He should not depart from them. 43 And He said unto them, I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also: for therefore am I sent. 44 And He preached in the synagogues of Galilee. (Luke 4:1-44 ACP/KJV)

Let me ask you to pray and ask the Lord to, one, open the eyes of those I have mentioned above. Two, to give me the understanding and power to do the two things I want to do, He knows what they are, I just need the strength. And three that He would likewise give you the strength to go forward and do what it is that He has created you to do for Him. For God not only created you in His image, He created you for His pleasure and as His obedient son or daughter. Can you be considered obedient if you continue to refuse to do that which He created you to do?

The Lord God of Creation, Christ Jesus, be with you all. Amen.

The difference between a true preacher and a false preacher comes down to this. The true preacher uses God's word to convict of sin, the false preacher twist God's word to justify sin. The Lord our God, Christ Jesus be with you always, amen.

I would also like to thank the Lord that Dorothy has a large print Bible, while I am not to happy about the way she got it, I am pleased that she has it. And now my prayer is that she will read it and the Lord will let the Holy Spirit guide her to understanding it. Amen.

The Lord be with you all and please keep me in your prayers. I have some very important decision to make over the next few weeks or months, I need your prayers. Amen.

The Lord our God, Christ Jesus, be with you all and please keep your pastor and me in your prayers. Amen. My prayer daily is "Lord please bless those tenfold who bless me."

Pray for the daughters of Will, for Will, and his mom. Pray that the Lord will put the girls back under the control of Steve.

Pray for my friend Mac, pray for Rush and Michael Savage. While the Lord does not need the platforms and audiences that Rush and Michael have, they, Rush, Michael and their audiences need the Lord.

Pray for the President, pray for Attorney General John Ashcroft, pray for me, pray for all those who open their mouths or take pen in hand in an effort to sway public opinion.

The Lord God of the Universe, Messiah Y'shua be with you all, amen.

It is better to be a horse fly in the stables of the Lord Jesus than the CEO of hell.

All Scripture quoted, in both sermons and daily thoughts, except when done by a guest, is from the ACP/authorized 1611 King James Version. The words in red are those quotes of God the Son, the Lord Jesus and the words in purple are those qoutes spoken directly by God the Father and the words in this sickly greenish color are of satan. But all of the Bible is spoken by God and should be viewed as God's handbook for us to run our lives by 2 Timothy 3:16.

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