I am come that they might have life...Abundant Life


Fight Fire With Fire (3/14/14)

Luke 24:13 And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs.14 And they talked together of all these things which had happened.15 And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them.16 But their eyes were holden that they should not know him.17 And he said unto them, What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another, as ye walk, and are sad?

18 And the one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said unto him, Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem, and hast not known the things which are come to pass therein these days?19 And he said unto them, What things? And they said unto him, Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people:20 And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have crucified him.21 But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done.22 Yea, and certain women also of our company made us astonished, which were early at the sepulchre;23 And when they found not his body, they came, saying, that they had also seen a vision of angels, which said that he was alive.24 And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulchre, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.25 Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:26 Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?27 And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.28 And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and he made as though he would have gone further.29 But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them.30 And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them.31 And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight.32 And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?   KJV

Just as for Cleopas and his traveling companion, when a hungry heart is in the presence of the Lord, the heart burns within…

Fire is a powerful force of nature. As an element, fire can be used to build and construct, as in the making of steel for a structure…but it can also bring destruction to things in it’s path, as in a devastating forest fire. The Lords fire can build up or construct, as well as it can destroy in judgment.  Today the fire he wants to light within us is to build us up in the realm of the Spirit.  He wants that fire to be burning hot, because his desire is that His church would be hot, not lukewarm.

In Luke 24:13-35, The Scriptures talk about these two who walk the road to Emmaus…encounterring the recently resurrected Christ, and yet did not recognize it to be Him. Jesus saw that they were downcast over the events of the past few days, heard their anguish, and then began to talk to them and open their eyes to the scriptures from Moses and on, revealing the teachings that were actually about Himself.

As they walked that dusty road, their fire was in danger of going out. But Jesus desire was to keep that fire burning within them.  It is for that reason that he opened their hearts and their eyes to who he was and how he loved them.

There is in the field of firefighting a way in which fire is actually used to fight a fire itself…The firefighters will light a controlled fire in the path of the oncoming flames so when the raging inferno arrives, there is nothing left for it to burn as fuel.

The Bible tells us of a Holy Ghost fire that will do much the same for us in the spirit…

Acts 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. KJV

The Lord brings that certain fire into our lives just as he did on the day of Pentecost…when we receive the Holy Ghost…

On April 14, 1912, signals of distress pierced the dark night of the North Atlantic in all directions from the magnificent but ill-fated ship, the Titanic. I did learn however that there was a ship that could have reached the Titanic…

The S.S. Californian was the nearest ship to the scene. It would have required only about one and a half hours for the Californian to have reached the Titanic as it sank. This was later acknowledged by the commanding officer of the Californian. Still the Californian never reached the place where the Titanic sank.

At the investigation of the sinking of the Titanic in Washington, D.C. Senator William Smith of Michigan asked the commanding officer of the S.S. Californian why she didn’t sail immediately to the scene of the accident when the transmission reached her. The officer shifted uncomfortably in the witness chair. Then he explained that they had feared icebergs. So they were lying motionless in the water. Even more importantly, he explained, they had extinguished their fires and had no steam up.

“Such was the explanation given as to why the Californian, which could have reached the Titanic before it sank, never got there and never rescued a single soul. No fire, no power, not one soul rescued!”

Let that never be said of us… that we have a form of godliness, but not its power? That we bear the name of Christ, but we lack the power the fire and the zeal to be his people in the world today… Let the fire of God ignite in your soul today by the power of the Holy Ghost fire…

Synopsis of message from 3/14/14 By Sue Keller and Pastor John Soshea

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The Real Solution to Racism!

Pastor John Soshea

So here it is right? Wrong! This is the most recent attempt by our well meaning city to try to staunch the stench of racism, bigotry, and discrimination in our world! The city that I live in – Duluth, Minnesota, is a mid-sized city in the upper midwest that is, how shall I say, not the most culturally diverse city in the land. Add to that fact that I am a fair skinned, blue eyed, slightly above middle aged male, you may be tempted to say…”He just doesn’t get it.” But, before you are so quick to judge, please hear me out.

Some might ask, “So what are you saying preacher, that there is no racism, or that it doesn’t matter, or there is no use in trying to fight against it?” Absolutely not. I applaud the efforts, and the ideal that desires to rid our world of the awful effects of this evil that has plagued ours and so many societies since the fall of mankind. But truthfully, it falls short. You see, any time we try to appeal to the heart of man, it falls short.

The scriptures tell us in Jeremiah 17:9 “The heart is deceitful above all things, And is desperately wicked…” A pretty grim synopsis for the prospects of touching our hearts and heads and bringing about meaningful change with a billboard.

I however can only really speak with authority from one perspective, and that is mine.

So here is where I am coming from. I have many friends, colleagues, and acquaintances who are of other ethnicities than I, that I genuinely believe do not simply view me as a blue eyed white guy, but see me as a friend, a mentor, a pastor, or just a man that loves them no matter what color they are. The truth is that I do not want to define them by the arbitrary characteristic of color, any more than I feel that I should be judged to be judging them negatively because of my color. I genuinely desire to be color blind as I relate to others.

I so love the quote from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s speech which says… “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

So let me close with this. As well meaning, as wonderfully intended, as deeply desiring to rid our world of this scourge of evil, I believe we fail, until we allow the Spirit of the Lord to have His way.

What we really need is not a change in the way that we think, but a change of our hearts. The scriptures tell us that if we enter into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ he will take this stony, hard hearted nature and change us at the deepest level of our being.

In 2 Corinthians 5:17 we are told of just how profound the change is. Paul writes, “…old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

When we begin our life in Christ, the words of the great apostle empower us to destroy the very roots of racism where it still abides, deep within the fertile soil of the heart…Paul had it right when he wrote…

Col 3:11 Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

13 Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.   NIV

When we learn to love one another with a pure heart that has been changed by His Spirit; racism, bigotry, and discrimination will no longer have a place to grow.

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A Soldier in the Army of God

Soldiers_Memorial_Day_wide_cb jpgA Soldier in the Army of Go

I am a soldier in the army of my God,

The Lord Jesus Christ is my commanding officer,

The Holy Bible is my code of conduct,

Faith, prayer and the Word are weapons of my warfare,

I have been taught by the Holy Spirit, trained by experience, tried by adversity and tested by fire,

I am a volunteer in this army, and I am enlisted for eternity,

I will either retire in this army at the rapture or die in this army; but I will not get out, sell out, be talked out or be pushed out,

I am faithful, reliable, capable and dependable,

If my God needs me, I am there,

If He needs me in Sunday School, to teach children, work with youth, help adults or just sit and learn,

He can use me because I am there,

I am a soldier, I am not a baby,

I do not need to be pampered, petted, primed up, pumped up, picked up, or pepped up,

I am a soldier, no one has to call me, remind me, write me, visit me, entice me or lure me,

I am a soldier, I am not a wimp, I am in place, saluting my King, obeying His orders, praising His name and building his kingdom,

No one has to send me flowers, gifts, food, cards, candy or give me handouts,

I do not need to be cuddled, cradled, cared for or catered to,

I am committed, I cannot have my feeling hurt bad enough to turn me around,

I cannot be discouraged enough to turn me aside, I cannot lose enough to cause me to quit,

When Jesus called me into this army, I had nothing, If I end up with nothing I will still come out even.

I will win, my God will supply all my needs,

I am more than a conqueror, I will always triumph, I can do all things through Christ,

Devils cannot defeat me, people cannot disillusion me, weather cannot weary me, sickness cannot stop me,

Battles cannot beat me, money cannot buy me, governments cannot silence me and hell cannot handle me.

I am a soldier, even death cannot destroy me, for when my Commander calls me from this battlefield,

He will promote me to a captain and then bring me back to rule this world with Him.

You see, I’m a good man – not because of my goodness, but because of His goodness!

AND, YOU CAN’T KEEP A GOOD MAN DOWN!

Written by: B.J.Morbitzer


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“Is Today the Day”

the rapture_wide_cb jpgSo today is supposed to be the day that Christ calls the church home?

Predictions of the end are certainly nothing new, however to think that you can set a date and time is certainly bold and unfortunately gives all of us who believe that Christ will one day take his people out of the world by the means of the “Rapture” or as the Bible calls it the “Catching Away”, a bad name.  Just so you know…As of 6 pm today (Harold Camping’s predicted Rapture time) I believe events will once again place Harold in the annuls of dubious distinctions.  Namely that of false prophets.  He has been there before, as he predicted the Rapture  of the church back in 1994.

You think the guy would have learned…but anyway for those of you who may need a little reinforcement from the Bible, here it is…

2 Thessalonians 2:1-5 (KJV)
Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, [2] That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. [3] Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come , except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; [4] Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. [5] Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?

My Philosophy is this…If the scripture didn’t say it, then neither should I.  So, with that said, I might add that there will be a rapture one day and as Christians we ought to seek to be ready whenever that day comes.

God Bless…

Pastor John Soshea

 

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Welcome

Welcome to the new home of Abundant Life of Duluth, MN – formerly Abundant Life Tabernacle. We are still in the midst of this transition, so please bear with us as this site changes.

Please feel free to explore the site, and come back to see what changes we make. We have lots of changes in store as this site and our church grows!

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