Hope is a Dangerous Place by Jim Baton

 

About the Book

In the HOPE Trilogy, teenagers Kelsey and Harmonie solve mysteries, fight for justice, experience the supernatural, and find their place in God’s destiny for their town of Hope, Colorado.

From the back cover of the book:

Seventy-five years ago, fifteen-year-old Hope McCormick disappeared. To remember her, the newly incorporated town was named “Hope.” When high school friends Kelsey and Harmonie begin looking into this unsolved mystery, they discover that someone will do anything to make sure the town’s secrets never come to light. Which neighbors are allies, and which face masks a violent enemy? And what will it take for their struggling town to fulfill its original destiny of hope? The Hope Trilogy is written for those who are hungry for God’s revival and transformation of their communities. Learn more at http://www.jimbaton.com.

“All over the world radical lovers of God are rising up to reform their communities. We’re about to see entire cities and nations experience supernatural kingdom transformation. Jim Baton’s HOPE Trilogy captures in riveting narrative what it could look like.”

–Johnny Enlow, founder of RISE, author of The Seven Mountain Renaissance: Vision and Strategy through 2050 and Rainbow God: The Seven Colors of Love

 

Book Excerpt

PROLOGUE
New York City, 2040

Jasper Pritz flashed his holographic government ID to the security guard in the UNICEF lobby, and after a brief phone call, the guard pointed him to the elevators. At the eleventh floor he located the Child Survival and Development office, and showed his ID once again.

“Please take a seat, Mr. Pritz. Our Assistant Director will be with you in a moment.”

Jasper surveyed the plush waiting room and chose an armchair with a good view of the digital wall. Fifteen screens detailed the work of the CSD office in various parts of the world. His eyes were drawn to a fireworks display in central Africa celebrating the eradication of malaria. The adjacent screen reported the distribution of five billion vaccines to children under five last year, and a record low for infant and early childhood mortality rates.

Terrific news, but not why Jasper was here.

A door opened and Jasper stood to his feet. The woman who approached him was no more than 5’8” even with her heels. Her brown hair was shaved on one side, where several piercings adorned her ear, long and straight on the other side. The silver sash from her right shoulder to her left hip contrasted with her black pantsuit. She was probably mid-30s. Her eyes were a glittery silver today—but he guessed that underneath the color contacts her pupils were probably brown. She smiled warmly and extended her hand. He took her hand in both of his. “Jasper Pritz, Revitalization Commission. Thanks for making time to meet with me.”

“Just call me Kelsey,” she answered. “I’ve got about an hour before I have to join a meeting at the UN.” She waved him toward the open office door. “Anything to drink?”

“Just water, thanks.”

As Jasper and Kelsey sat on the rounded sofa in her office, the secretary placed a bottle of sparkling water and a cup of coffee on the circular coffee table before them.

The view through the green reflecting glass was breathtaking—from the majestic new United Nations building to the sparkling blue East River and the skyline of Long Island beyond.

But the assistant director’s time was precious, he reminded himself. He tapped the holoband on his wrist.

“Do you mind if I record this?”

“Not at all.” Kelsey smiled again. She looked relaxed. He had expected someone with the weight of the world’s children on her shoulders to look more . . . agitated or worried.

“Tell me about the Revitalization Commission. I’ve never heard of it,” she began. He quoted their promo materials from memory: “

’Our task is to document cases of urban revitalization, discern common factors, and recommend policies that will support the revitalization process.’

“Basically, the White House has become aware that across America, while the overall statistics show only slight improvements in health, income, public safety, education, tolerance, etcetera, there are certain cities or towns that have seen such dramatic improvement in all these areas that we can label them “transformed” or “revitalized” urban centers. Our taskforce is analyzing seventy cities that have achieved that distinction in just the last twenty years. Once our research is complete, we will be able to suggest policies that will hopefully enable other struggling urban centers to turn their situations around.”

“How fascinating! May I ask why you’re focused only on the last twenty years?”

“It’s true that there are case studies of transformed cities farther back in history. Perhaps the first modern researcher to analyze these studies trying to discern replicable trends was George Otis Jr. about fifty years ago. But the cases he studied were mostly outside the United States. Starting in the year 2020, there was a real surge of revitalization cases in the U.S., to the point that the media, the business community, and finally the politicians have been forced to take notice.

“We’re still analyzing the data, but the raw numbers point to these seventy cities boasting a median income on average more than fifty percent higher than other cities their size; negative health issues such as obesity, addiction, even cancer are all well below average; their crime rates are dramatically lower, and in some cases the murder rate has remained at zero for an entire decade; hate crimes are almost non-existent, while racial and religious harmony is one of the hallmarks of such cities.

“Well, I could go on and on about what is happening across our nation, but I came here today to listen to you. One of the very first towns to exhibit these transformational traits is Hope, Colorado. So far in my research, everyone I’ve spoken with tells me the town’s turnaround started with you.”

Kelsey’s eyebrows shot up. “Me? I was only there a few years, and my role was so small.”

“Your role must have been significant,” Jasper argued. “One person claimed you were the ‘catalyst,’ while another called you the ‘driving force.’”

“Ha! Anything I did I stumbled into accidentally,” Kelsey replied. She took a sip of coffee. “To get the full story you’ll need to interview several people: my father, my friend Harmonie, my high school journalism teacher, the editor of our local newspaper, and probably several more—I’ll make a list for you.”

“That would be very helpful. But as long as I’ve got you here, can you please tell me your side of the story? What was the town like when you were seventeen, and how did you turn things around?” Kelsey glanced at the time on the digital screen on her wall. “Sure, I’d be happy to tell what I know of the story. And if we can’t finish it before my meeting, I’ll be happy to schedule a follow-up time. It really is a good story. Looking back, it’s hard to imagine now what a dying town Hope was when I first moved there. Now where do I start?”

“Was there some kind of a spark, some event out of the ordinary? One person I’ve interviewed suggested it began with an art mural.”

Kelsey ran her hand over her hair and neck. “Honestly, our town’s transformation was probably birthed in a prayer meeting before I was even born. But from where I entered the story, I’d say the beginning was the day the tornado hit in August, 2020. Not because of anything I did that day, but because of something Sylvia Seymour said that day; or should I say, predicted on that day.

“Yes, I think the story really begins with my best friend Harmonie and her praying grandmother, Sylvia Seymour.”

 

About the Author

Award-winning author Jim Baton (pen name) has spent the last 20+ years living in the Muslim world, where he’s been involved in a variety of peace and reconciliation activities including interfaith dialogue, training elementary through university students in peace principles, and bringing Christians and Muslims together to pray. His real name and photo won’t appear on this site to protect his identity from radical groups where he lives out his faith.

Jim also has been on a lifelong pursuit of personal and societal revival and transformation. His newest series of novels, the Hope Trilogy, encapsulates all he’s learned along this journey, with faith that God will visit us again in our day.

 

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Something I Am Not by Cher Gatto

About the Book

A father who never loved him…

A woman who stole his worth…

And a brother he couldn’t protect.

Where does someone run in the face of his deepest shame?

Billy McQueen works hard to keep his life together … and concealed. At seventeen, he dreams of an escape from the barroom, his father’s manipulation, and the advances of his father’s girlfriend. However, on his eighteenth birthday, Billy is introduced to a younger brother he never knew he had. An eight-year-old who is barely capable of navigating the corrupt world of his father’s boxing club.

In order to secure his freedom, Billy must fight for it. To save his little brother who is next in line for the slave trade … he must die for it.

 

Book Excerpt

I blamed my father for it. For the mounting rage within me. That unrelenting surge that sought to consume. That turned me into something I was not. And I knew I was not. For there was something else. Something I could not get a hold of. Something that was not my father.

 

About the Author

I never meant to be a writer. It’s something that happened to me when I wasn’t looking. Our family served in Mexico ten years developing a horse ranch for kids with difficult backgrounds. In the corral one day, Billy’s story got a hold of my heart. I hid myself away for months and wrote furiously. Four hundred and fifty pages later, I had his story.

Ashes to gold. Brokenness to redemption. I realized afterward, for I didn’t see it at first, that Billy’s journey gave me the key to heal from things I encountered but couldn’t change. Things that broke my heart.

BILLY became SOMETHING I AM NOT and went on to win the Genesis Award for contemporary fiction at American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW). A great honor for a debut novel.

 

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From Dreams To Deliverance by Ademola Borode

About the Book

Introducing my New Book “FROM DREAMS TO DELIVERANCE” available Now in both Paperback and On Amazon Kindle. This Book exposes this special area of communication between the Spiritual and The physical and How to block Satanic manipulation of the lives of a Christian via their subconscious. Also speaks extensively on Dreams, interpretations, the specific Psalms to use when praying and around 550 acidic prayer points targeted at breaking the chains of demonic invasion and manipulation of people’s lives through dreams. I sincerely believe this book would be a blessing to someone out there and would also be a very good GIFT to purchase and give to a friend.

 

Book Excerpt

PREFACE

Dreams are essential to the completeness of the human existence and it is a bridge between the supernatural and the natural realm. It is a way by which the spiritual realm most times communicates with the physical and gives man instructions concerning the present and what lies ahead.

Therefore, it is very essential for someone to dream in order to be able to receive instructions/information from the spiritual realm. Some people say they don’t dream, or some say I dream but as soon as I wake up, I don’t remember the dreams I had again. Whichever way it happens, either you don’t dream, or you forget as soon as you wake up, it is very dangerous. What this means is that the enemy has tampered with your spiritual monitoring system just the way it happens when your TV cable signal or receiver breaks down and you don’t have any reception again on your screen. I pray as you read this book that your dream life would receive the fire of deliverance today in the name of Jesus.

When we dream, it is very important also to be able to interpret those dreams because sometimes, dreams come in the form of parables that it becomes necessary to decode the dreams in order for the message being passed across to be clearer. Now once we are able to decode the message in that dream, then the next thing is to find solutions because in every dream there’s an information that the spiritual realm is trying to pass across to us.
This book is divided into 5 chapters and in these chapters, we would find out what dreams are and the reasons why God or the spiritual realm gives us dreams. We would also find out in details why we need to interpret those dreams and also why we need to do something about them. The 4th Chapter tells us in utmost details based on the word of God those steps we need to take in order to prevent recurrences of strange and satanic dreams in our lives. In the last Chapter, we’ll be taking a look at 105 strange dreams that people commonly have, and how they are broken down in details based on life experiences and the word of God and we also be seeing the various specific psalms that are specifically targeted at dealing with those dreams and countering their intended evil effects and also seriously acidic prayer points specifically targeted at dealing with those strange dreams and bringing you solutions.

Majority of the dreams outlined in this book are dreams that I personally as a Christian have had earlier in the course of my life’s journey when the battles of life came calling and the devil decided to make it his business to wage war against my life and how I dealt with them spiritually to prevent their intended negative effects from coming to pass, while some of the dreams outlined are those that I came across during course of my years of counselling people in ministry as a Pastor.

I have taken the time to provide detailed and clearer interpretations to each of them as inspired by the Holy Spirit of God. I have also provided targeted spiritual remedies using the book of psalms and holy ghost inspired acidic prayer points spiritually engineered to bring deliverance and lasting solutions, so that people who are already caught within the negative manifestations of such dreams could find a way out. The book of psalms is a very effective weapon in the word of God to deal fatal blows to the enemy especially for those who have discovered the secret of how to put them to effective use.

It is my utmost prayer and desire that as you read this book, you’ll gain a better understanding of your dreams and be delivered from the shackles of the enemy and ultimately be free from satanic and strange dreams in
the name of Jesus.

About the Author

Dr Ademola Borode is a Nigerian born clergy and former scientist and academic. He bagged his Doctorate degree in Fish breeding and aquaculture technology from the Prestigious Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo State in South west Nigeria in the year 2000. He spent over 18 years in the academia and research world with several peer reviewed research publications in both international and local journals to his name before he was called into the ministerial field first as an Evangelist and later as a Pastor.

He went through Pastoral Training in The Christ Apostolic Church, North America Bible School. He runs a private business in the United States and he is also an ordained Pastor in the Christ Apostolic Church Worldwide where he Pastors a fast-growing branch of the Christ Apostolic Church in the United States of America. He has several years of counselling and ministerial experience and the lord has given him a ministry of Evangelism and Deliverance with several Testimonies of what the lord has done in the live’s of people through his ministry.
Dr Ademola Borode is Married and he is blessed with Children.

 

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The Ring Does Not Fit by Sunshine Rodgers

About the Book

Alena is stuck in a mundane marriage and longing for something different. New clothes. Bigger bling. Flashy cars. Miraculously and inexplicably, it all happens in a flash and she is finally married to the man of her dreams, but something still seems to be missing. In all her excitement, the one thing she’s looking for is the one thing she can’t seem to keep.

 

Book Excerpt

I settled…

The Honky Tonk song starts playing.

“Let’s get out there! It’s our song!” Steven now screams hysterically, jumping wildly around me.

My whole body feels like lead. I honestly can’t move.

“You go,” I say, still in a daze. “I don’t feel much like dancing.”

“Suit yourself!” He waves over his comrades from earlier and they all get out on the dance floor. Steven is all smiles surrounded by his posse. The blonde guy from earlier seems to be dancing pretty close to Steven.

My girls apparently forgot all about me! They moved on, taking off about half their clothes, throwing their shoes and extra shirts all around the dance floor as if the stage is their own personal bedroom.

They seem more interested in flirting with the nearby cowboys to realize that I am nowhere near their group.

“Looks like Steven’s having fun!” A strong voice whispers in my ear.

My body naturally swoons to the sound.

When I turn to look, it was Lee! He has returned with a hot plate of wings and some coffee.

“Um…yeah.” I keep staring into his eyes. Lee’s always had such beautiful big blue eyes, one of the many traits that first attracted me to him.

The pain of my new reality stings me to the core and I start to get emotional.

“Alena, are you okay?” Lee asks sincerely.

“Yes. Yes, I’ll be fine.” I choke on my words.

“Well, Happy Anniversary. I know this is a big day for you and Steven.”

I look down at my wedding ring, the silver band I am tempted to just leave at the table and this new life I desperately want to walk away from.

“I’m just thinking about marriage,” I admit.

“Oh?” Lee sits down at the seat next to me, putting his tray on the table.

The music is loud so I inch in closer to Lee so he can hear me better, his Calvin Klein cologne starts to waft into my nose. “How do you know when you’ve found the right person?”

Lee looks up, as if thinking very seriously about my question. He finally faces me square in the eye to answer. “I always felt that the right one will be an extension of you. What you like, they like. What you respect, they will respect. What you value, they will value. I always envisioned marriage to be a true partnership, where one lifts up the other so that everyone wins.”

I smile.

A typical Lee answer.

“Thanks. I think you’re exactly right.”

“Lee!” his co-worker at Chickadee’s Tavern yells out, motioning him to come back to the bar.

“I should go,” Lee shrugs. “It is great seeing you. I hope you are the designated driver. If Steven doesn’t get some food in his system, he might not be able to drive.”

I smile and gently nod.

 

 

 

About the Author

Sunshine Rodgers is an International Best-Selling author, speaker and motivator who excels in sharing the hope and light of the gospel in her books. Sunshine hopes her pages will get you passionate about your faith. Her books have been made into audio books and translated in different languages. Her social media sites and personal blog reach thousands of readers a week. Sunshine has appeared in magazines, newspapers and live media interviews and is working on her merchandise line (available on her website!). Sunshine now enjoys her days traveling for signings, author events, speaking engagements and book tours.

 

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DISCLOSURE: SOME OF THE LINKS IN THE PAGE ABOVE MAY BE “AFFILIATE LINKS.” THIS MEANS IF YOU CLICK ON THE LINK AND PURCHASE THE ITEM, WE WILL RECEIVE AN AFFILIATE COMMISSION. WE ARE DISCLOSING THIS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION’S 16 CFR, PART 255: “GUIDES CONCERNING THE USE OF ENDORSEMENTS AND TESTIMONIALS IN ADVERTISING.”

When the Stars Align by Michelle Dykman

About the Book

A #1 New Release on Amazon
A hapless girl, a remarkable boy and a….baby?

Candice Hillman’s senior year is thrown into turmoil when she is faced with an impossible choice. One night with Brad has an unexpected consequence and her world is caving in on itself. Brad leaves her for Willow and suddenly she’s alone.

Enter Jack Anson.

Jack Anson lives the words he speaks. He is kind, generous and friendly. The kind of boy any mother would love for her daughter but when Jack is faced with Candice’s problem he finds himself having to make difficult decisions of his own.

Can Candice find her way to Jack or will everything conspire to keep them apart?

 

Book Excerpt

 

Chapter 1:

Candice Hillman pulled her red hair over her shoulder as she yanked her backpack out of her truck. She tugged her shirt so that it swept just right over the edge of her jeans. Her brown eyes flashed with annoyance at the kids standing around the school parking lot pointing and whispering about her.

Figures, Brad is already here!

The stories had already begun circulating through the school. Yeah, Brad Thorn had done it!

Brad had achieved the impossible. He had hooked up Willow Rysen.

She shook her head in disgust. She had no clue what had come over her that Saturday night a month ago. She liked Brad. Liked him enough to spend the last few months being his adoring fan and girlfriend. However, as soon as Willow Rysen had shown an interest in Brad, he dropped Candice like a hot potato! She was yesterday’s news, and Willow had Brad right where she wanted him.

There had always been a chance that Brad would be less than honorable, but she’d trusted him. That mistake had shown her to be the stupid naïve chicken her mother always thought she was. Brad was so charismatic and handsome that Candice was quickly charmed into dating him. She now wished she hadn’t been so blind. Since coming to Bethel Private School a year ago, Candice had thought she was in the “it” crowd. Now, she knew better
With a determined sigh, she forced open the door of A block, pushing her way through the ever-present crowd. She flinched as she saw Willow pulling an eager Brad into the dark gym. She had a good idea of what would be going on there. She noticed two boys to the left who also watched the spectacle. One with dark hair and glasses, and another boy with sandy brown hair and green eyes. The boy with the green eyes had a nice athletic body that moved and stretched in all the right places. His looked delighted with the actions of Willow and Brad.

Candice’s eyes widened. Were there any boys in Bethel that didn’t worship the ground Willow walked on?

Enough!

She’d had enough of the pretense, the lies, the drama. Spinning on her heel, she hurried back to her car. A voice reached her as she flung her backpack into the bed of her truck.

“Candice, wait up. Where are you going?”

Candice paused as she turned to Felicia Wren, Willow’s best friend.

Just great!

“I’m out, Felicia. Willow can have Brad. I need the day away from this,” she said, waving her hand in the direction of the school. Felicia nodded, her face filled with sympathy. She was Willow’s best friend, but despite this, she seemed to understand the feeling of being upstaged by Willow again and again. Candice had to wonder why she put up with it.

“Okay. I’ll call you later. Be safe,” Felicia said. She ran back toward the school as the bell rang.
Candice flung open the door of her truck. Her mom would call later when the school phoned her. Candice knew Mom wouldn’t care as long as she didn’t have to come and fetch her. No, she would leave everything involving Candice to Mrs. Potter.

That was the way things were with them since her parents divorced four years ago. Mom worked herself to death at her publishing company while Candice raised herself. She didn’t mind it. It made dating and a few other things that much easier to do. Candice missed her dad, and she wished he still lived with them.
Mrs. Potter kept an eye on her when she was there, but most nights, Candice was alone. Her thoughts shifted back to Brad and she shivered with disgust.

What was I thinking?

She hadn’t been.

One kiss had led to another, and then one thing led to another. Before she knew it, it was over, and Brad was on his way out the door. Brad was sweet after, loving even. Murmuring kind words as he collected his things. She couldn’t believe that they…did it. She remembered sitting in the shower, reliving each moment, sadness, and guilt dragging her down.

She’d given it away, and now she’d never get it back. It was lost now. The only thing she could do was deal with the shame and move forward. At least she hoped she could. Candice knew she didn’t have a sign painted on her that showed what she had done, but it sure felt like it that first Monday back. Brad was different after that first time. He pressured her to do it again each time they were together. Candice didn’t want to, just the idea of being touched by him made her skin crawl. That one night had made it glaringly obvious to her that she was not ready for a relationship like that. They had drifted apart when it became apparent to Brad that Candice wouldn’t give in to his persuasion. So, as soon as Willow made a play for him, he was out of there. He knew Willow was a sure thing.

 

About the Author

Michelle is a busy working Mom who married her best friend many years ago and has two busy boys who always keep her on her toes. She is a Special Education teacher and loves to read and write books about romance, compassion and love. She was born in South Africa and currently lives in Canada. When she not writing you can find her running on the road or settled in with a good book. You can learn more about her and her books or sign up for her newsletter on her website or on her Facebook page: Michelle Dykman’s books.

 

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Cracking the Happy Weight Code by Allistar Banks

About the Book

My book is inspired by the fact that I made the decision to lose fifty plus pounds fourteen years ago and have kept it off since then. As I lost weight, I started to learn proper nutrition, exercise, how the Bible can guide and encourage me to have a healthy lifestyle, and much more. Now I want to share with young women my journey I went through to lose the weight and how I have kept it off.

Let’s dive more into my book below!

It has been a long road for Alli to finally figure out how to be happy with her body image and weight. And now she gets to open up and share her story about how she struggled and overcame issues with weight, the proper amount of exercise, and eating healthy. With that said, she wants to crack the happy weight code to help women feel great about their body image and weight-based upon biblical principals and sharing some of her favorite meals and snacks that have helped her keep off fifty plus pounds!

 

Book Excerpt

Design your life by avoiding false images.

 

About the Author

Allistar Banks is a prolific author, having published five books in the last two years. She was born and raised in McCormick, South Carolina. Ms. Banks is a graduate of Lander University in Greenwood, SC and received her Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications in 2013. She has been featured in the Index-Journal, The Press and Banner, McCormick Messenger, Lander University’s magazine, and interviewed on WZLA 92.9FM. She is best known for children’s books that teach new concepts and emotional development. She is now honored to be on a future broadcast with the CBS Sunday Morning Show for her children’s book called A Colorful Balloon Ride, which teaches one to five-year-old’s their colors by using objects of carnival food and nature on Mary and Emily’s hot air balloon ride around the County Fair with Mr. John. Besides spending her time writing, she enjoys hiking, reading, seeing local bands play, Pilates, pet sitting, and seeing plays.

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It’s Not Easy, But It’s Simple by Tiwayi Mushambi

 

About the Book

Throughout His ministry, Jesus not only fulfilled the law and the prophets but simplified our understanding of them and gave us unique perspectives on the nature of God’s Kingdom. Jesus Christ is not a complex entity, and the truth He spoke is very simple. Author Tiwayi Mushambi takes a thought-provoking look at the teachings of Christ, drawing from the gospels, as he explores Jesus’ message to unlock new insights for new believers and seasoned Christians returning to their first love.

 

Book Excerpt

SIMPLICITY IN CHRIST – GETTING BACK TO BASICS

“I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity (the utter exclusiveness) that is in Christ” (2 Corinthians 11:3).

The World Christian Encyclopedia estimates the number of Christian “denominations” at 33,000. However, by “denominations”, they mean various church organizations that are not necessarily different in their set of doctrines. The number of different Christian belief systems currently resides in the low 50s. Still, that is an incredibly high number for a religion that is supposed to be “one body” with “one faith” in one God.
Paul warns us not to be led astray from “the simplicity that is in Christ.” The Greek word for “simplicity” in this verse means singleness, exclusiveness. In other words, Jesus is not a complex entity. The truth about Christ is very simple: He is God. He is divine, born of a virgin, crucified and raised from the dead. Paul was afraid that they were being corrupted away from that single, exclusive truth. It is the one truth that binds us all, despite all our differences.

Paul also warns of ministers who preach a different Jesus:
” For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the Spirit you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.” (2 Corinthians 11:4).
Paul was telling the Corinthians that they were listening to another gospel, not to the gospel of Christ. They heard about another Jesus, different from the One who saved them. The message here boils down to this single verse:
“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).

Jesus’ statement here is absolutely exclusive. No Catholic, no Protestant, no Lutheran, no Pentecostal, nobody can come to the Father by any way except Christ. Just as Jesus asked His twelve disciples, He asks us today: “Who do men say that I am?” (Mark 8:27). The disciples answered, “John the Baptist: but some say, Elias (Elijah); and others, One of the prophets” (8:28). But Jesus’ real question to His followers came next: He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” (8:29). Our answer must be the same as Peter’s: “You are the Christ” (8:29). This must be our confession before the whole world, now and forever.

The main thing about being a Christian is to see that the main thing (Jesus) remains the main thing. That is what Paul is saying. What is supposed to be at the heart and center of your life is the exclusivity that is in Christ, a simple truth. I have noticed over many years of observation that when religion becomes complicated and divisions occur, it is always a sign that it is drifting away from the realities and centralities of the faith.
The world around us is getting increasingly complex, and it is because it is drifting farther and farther from God. Male and female become over 64 genders. Right and wrong become relativistic ethics and “personal truths”. The order that was established in the kingdom of God is flipped on its head, and it is increasingly difficult to proclaim Jesus as the Christ, especially in the West and Middle East.

That is what Paul is concerned about here. We often say, and rightly so, that Christianity is not a creed, it is a relationship; it is living with a Person. That is the simplicity that is in Christ. The danger that we constantly face is that we get involved in the things about Christ and fail to live in a relationship with Christ. Going through the motions, as it were.
You can lose it in the midst of Christian activity. You can lose it when you get so involved in some of the fascinating aspects of Scripture that you lose the simplicity that is in Christ. You can lose it in the pressures of everyday living. You can get so busy and so distracted and so anxious about yourself and the things that are happening to you that you lose the sense that Christ is with you, and that He is adequate. The beautiful simplicity that is in Jesus can un-complicate our lives.

The Corinthian believers were seduced by teachers who were exposing them to falsehoods that caught their attention, but they were drifting from that central point. Much like some believers today, they were involved with misguided philosophies that were based on the Word of God but followed wrong trains of thought.
We cannot allow ourselves to be bogged down by religious politics and inflated egos. Jesus is the center of it all, and we must look to Him.

 

 

About the Author

Tiwayi Mushambi is the author of The First Victory: The Power of Self-Discipline and a motivational speaker. He lives Harare, Zimbabwe with his wife. Tiwayi loves educating and inspiring other authors, believers and entrepreneurs to succeed and live the life of their dreams.

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