Thoughts on Good Friday

Hey all,

I wanted to write this post as a letter to you guys because it feels more natural to me. Recently (a.k.a. today) I was talking to some friends at Lunch and many topics arose that I started feeling uncomfortable with. Most of these topics were on Politics and America needing some help, which I’ll admit, I agreed on some things. But then, something came across my mind, no one was talking about today and its symbol. Good Friday is the day we talk about Jesus’ death on the cross for our sins, a day we really all mourn due to the fact that our Savior had just said ‘It is Finished’. I wanted to put this out there because I’ve realized that many people of my own generation don’t stop and reflect on the significance of what happened before Jesus Rose from the Grave on Resurrection Sunday.

‘It Is Finished’ 3 words that signify the Death of Jesus. But, not only does it signify His Death, it also signifies that our sins have now been washed white as snow. We are cleansed of all our sins because Gods only son gave His life for our own.

Many people will probably say, ‘we weren’t saved until after Jesus rose’, but for me, The moment my Jesus died and the temple curtain was torn in two was when my sins were cleansed. His last breath opened the door for our restored relationship with God.

My friends, we are still naive and vulnerable to different views and beliefs, no matter our age. One of the most important things we all have to remember is the sacrifice of the son of God.

The Veil Was Torn and We are Still Broken

On the day Jesus was crucified a prophesy was unfolding. When Jesus breathed His last and was pierced for our transgressions, the veil separating the Holy of Holies was torn and God was open to all the people. For many hundreds of years, the priests were the only ones allowed near the Ark of the Covenant. When the life and the blood of the Living Word was spilt on the Earth, the world shook in praise and as it worshipped the truth, it opened up to fulfill Jesus, prophecy of destroying the physical man-made Temple and caused the heart of mankind to become what it was meant to be.

This opened the way for the Holy Spirit to enter in so God could live within us. The 3 day prophesy was not complete until Mary and the Apostles saw and communed with Jesus in His resurrected body. If you recall, Mary was not allowed to touch Jesus at first meeting because He was not complete. The women went and reported all these things and were doubted till the two saw the empty tomb themselves. We were still broken.

The traditions and laws of man still govern over us and have taken the place of God. Things that Jesus discussed and made possible have been corrupted by the devil and entered into the community of believers when those in human authority became greedy and placed the rich in positions that they had no business being in.

We are broken
We are broken by the dependency on technology. Satan has found many ways to keep us from the Mark of God (His Word on our hearts, head, and hands), and replaced it with needs and desires for material things. The products of these advances have left us wanting and not being filled with what is truly needed.

Remember what Jesus said about not worrying? We have become so dependent on the dollar to purchase our basic needs that most have become lazy, stressed, and anxious. We are forced to work in jobs that do not use all our skills. God has given us each a gift to work together as a community trading and bartering goods and services, doing everything for His glory.

Jesus did all He could to get everyone in Judea back on track. He set up everything He needed to do for all to get right with God. Jesus even gave us Paul and Silas. Jesus died for our sins. He gave it all for us. God’s Grace is freely given, Jesus Mercy is on those who put their faith in Him.
But, we are still broken.

Holy Thursday (Maundy Thursday) A Night of Joy and Sadness

This is the night that Christians celebrate the installing of the Sacrament of the Last Supper. There are some complications that arise from the actual dating of things since three of the four gospels are in agreement that it was held the first night of the Seder Feast while John states it was on the evening prior to the Seder. Either way, this year Passover begins with the first Seder Feast on Friday the 30th.
Now this was no ordinary meal as Jesus had designed the provisions of the New Covenant with installing the bread and wine. Jesus also had a final lesson for the disciples as He gave them the ultimate example of servant leadership by the washing of the feet which was normally reserved for the servants or head of house to do for the guests.
When the actual meal was over and He took the bread and the cup, Jesus mentioned His coming final act in the flesh and how it would come to pass what they would do. There will be a betrayal, a disownment, and His death. It was after this that Judas leaves to get the Sanhedrin and the guards which was no easy task.
Instead of dwelling on who would betray, Luke says the Disciples argued about something different:
A dispute also arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest. Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves. You are those who have stood by me in my trials. And I confer on you a kingdom, just as my Father conferred one on me, so that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. Luke 22:24-30
Wow what a divine message on being a true servant.
Jesus Points Out Simon Peter’s Betrayal
It was right after this that Peter told Jesus that he would not forsake Him. Jesus knows this to be false so He tells Peter that he will deny Him. Can you imagine what was going through Peter’s head after he heard that? The master tells the student that he will disown Him to save his own skin. How does one recover from that? Peter would later take up a sword and use it in an attempt to save Jesus. Attempt failed so the best course, try again then run to save one’s own skin. Now Peter would be forgiven and given the task of spreading the gospel to the world but it wasn’t until being filled with the fire of the Holy Spirit that he would fully understand.
The evening ended with the prayer in the garden, the betrayal of Judas, the scattering of the Disciples, and the Arrest and first trial of the Messiah. What we need to remember is that He instituted the bread and cup to be done at ALL gatherings not just one time a year or once a quarter as most Protestant churches do. Tonight Jesus will be mocked constantly and treated like a hardened criminal all for the sake of our lives. Would you take someone’s place to save him or her?

Welcome In The Name Of The Lord: Didache 12

Everyone has something that makes them special. No I am not going all Veggie Tales on you. When a person comes into the community we should welcome then in the name of the Lord but then what do we do??

Welcome anyone coming in the name of the Lord. Receive everyone who comes in the name of the Lord, but then, test them and use your discretion.
If he who comes is a transient, assist him as far as you are able; but he should not remain with you more than two or three days, if need be. If he wants to stay with you, and is a craftsman, let him work for his living. But if he has no trade, use your judgment in providing for him; for a Christian should not live idle in your midst. If he is dissatisfied with this sort of an arrangement, he is a Christ peddler. Watch that you keep away from such people.

Test them???? Come up with a series of questions that a believer would know and if they are found to be truthful, let them stay if not send them on their way. Transients are travelers, nomads, persons with no real place to call home. Feed them, cloth them, let them rest then send them on their way. If the person can be useful because of the spiritual gifts or trades, let the person stay and earn his/her keep. Then if they choose to stay and are acceptable, let them stay. The idle one should be let go as the Scriptures warn against an IDLE Heart:
A worthless [Idle] person digs up evil [gossip] — it is like scorching fire on his lips. Proverbs 16:27 (CJB)
We hear that some of you are leading a life of idleness — not busy working, just busybodies! We command such people — and in union with the Lord Yeshua the Messiah we urge them — to settle down, get to work, and earn their own living. And you brothers who are doing what is good, don’t slack off! 2 Thessalonians 3:11-13 (CJB)

Speaking of IDLE HEARTS, how many additional people showed up in church today? What is the expected number on Easter Sunday? Are there other Holy Week Services such as Maundy Thursday, or Good Friday? How many that show up for those will not be seen again until Christmas? Do you not think that maybe we can do something about that? We can, in fact we have to.

This is the most important time for the Christian calendar, yes even more important than Christmas. How many people do you know that can be considered like the thief that asked Jesus forgiveness while hanging on the Cross? You know the type, Christian when convenient for them. Should we not be working on them year round to get them to turn their backs on the evils of this world and face God. Would you rather them know that God is there for them now and not just when they think they need Him. We have an old Hymn that the chorus goes:
I need thee oh I need thee
every hour I need thee
Oh bless me every hour
I come to thee.

Not only do we need God, He needs us. We are His inheritance. Yes that sounds weird that our creator has us as His inheritance but it is true. Every time we lose a soul to the world, part of God’s inheritance slips from His fingers. He even made it easy for us to stay in His arms thanks to the reason for this season. Without the Sacrifice, Death, Resurrection, and Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ, we are completely and utterly lost.

There is nothing greater than to know that Jesus, Yeshua, Iesha, Immanuel, is the King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Son of the Living God who gave up His very existence as the Word Incarnate in order for us to reconnect with God in a personal relationship. He walks and talks with us if we listen. We do not have to tune everything out to hear Him because He will make the rocks, trees, grass, and leaves sing of His Glory. Why would someone not want this??? It baffles me.

Why do people believe the lie that says, I got Jesus, I am good and can wait on the Lord. Yes His grace is enough but we cannot just sit idly by waiting for our meeting. If you believe that lie, you will miss the call over the intercom saying you are next and when you are informed you will be just like that thief who heard about him but still committed sin.

Palm Sunday and Holy Week

We are entering what is called Holy Week. It starts with Jesus finishing His travel to Jerusalem and becomes more and more interesting from there. Jesus had two of the Disciples go to get a young burro for Him to ride on when entering the gates of Jerusalem. This is the time where Jesus will cautiously reveal His true self to all whose eyes are opened. Jesus will heal, convict the money changers in the Temple, cry out in rage to the Sanhedrin, eat a final meal, get betrayed by all but one Disciple, be comforted, beaten near death, and die on the cross.

Some interesting things about this week. The Christian Holy Week occurs at the same time as the Jewish Passover. God told Moses to get the people to cover their doors with lamb’s blood so the Angel of Death will pass by their homes and thereby saving the first born sons of Israel. Jesus made the sacrifice of His life, His Blood that would cover and cleanse our hearts to the point where God could fill it full of Himself.

This week we will see Jesus in a whole new light (well, if you were around back then and watching these occurrences as they took place). Jesus is heavily ridiculed and praised all at the same time. He is seen as a king entering his kingdom after winning a battle. He is worshipped and abused, questioned and mocked, ruined and restored.

Judas betrays Jesus for the price of a slave. Jesus was given into slavery so that we could be freed from the slavery of sin.

Jesus shows the example of true exhaustive, passionate, prayer that is the example of need to understand that our will only carries us so far. God is ultimately in control.
True devotion and friendship is tested this week when Peter denies Christ and runs while John stays nearby risking everything to provide a comforting shoulder for Jesus mother.

It is said, according to some deep rooted Catholic tradition, that Pilate offered to put his own son in Jesus place on the cross yet Jesus said no. Pilate’s Wife had a prophetic dream about Jesus and what would become of the world. She supposedly turned to God after that. I do not know the truth of these things yet it would be interesting if they were true.

The actual timing of everything really relies on the Jewish lunar calendar and Passover Seder (Sorry Emperor Constantine you cannot change this one). That is why Resurrection Day rarely on the same day in a twenty year span.

This week, pray for and with someone in desperate need for Jesus. Do as He commissioned us to do. Share what your Savior has done in your life so that others may know who Jesus is to you. Then share how they can have Jesus in their lives. It really is not that hard to do. Instead of inviting someone for Easter service, invite to come for all services.

It is past time to act, we should be in follow up mode. It is not too late at this point to act, Jesus has not invited the thief yet. Be of good faith and not idle. Be blessed today and always with the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Prodigal Son P3: The Loving Father

The Prodigal Son p3

The Father pleas with the Eldest Son and exclaims:
 ‘Son, you are always with me,’ said the father, ‘and everything I have is yours. We had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead but has come back to life — he was lost but has been found.’” Luke 15:31-32
The steadfast and loyal son had his faith shaken because there has never been a celebration like this for him. But the father, full of grace, mercy, love, and full compassion helps him understand why the celebration is taking place. Jesus is now showing the attributes of God to both the lost and the believer.

So the father in this story represents God. You see, this father waited patiently for his son to return. In the same manner the father reacted, God waits for the repentant sinner. He has compassion for the one who comes on his own accord. The father had apparently heard about the state of affairs the son found himself in and waited expectantly for the son to return. This is revealing that God knows our hearts and grants us the opportunity to return to Him. The great celebration shows how God is a forgiving, compassionate God who will shower His love on us and restores to our place in the Father’s arms.

What a joy it will be but let’s look at the parable again for a second. When the father saw the boy from a distance, he lunged towards him not in a scornful manner, but loving. The father did not even let his son finish the practiced confession but unconditionally lavished mercy and grace upon him returning him to status of fellowship within the family. The father running to his son, greeting him with a kiss and ordering the celebration to begin is a picture of how our Heavenly Father feels towards sinners who repent.

God greatly loves us, patiently waits for us to repent so he can show us His great mercy, because he does not want any to perish nor escape as though by the fire. It is our understanding of God’s compassion for us that enables us to show concern for the lost and celebrate when they are found so He prepared a mediator for us. Just as the father is the mediator between the sons Jesus is the mediator who ultimately took our place to change our fate of being lost in the darkness without God.

Jesus in this parable tells us that we are forgiven but must take the first step by realizing and confessing our sins to the Father. He also says that God is waiting patiently for us to do just that. He is merciful and wants us to come home. We as Christians seek out others to bring home but I tell you this, “No one comes to the father but through Jesus Christ”. We are His vessels and our work is His. Those who seek forgiveness come to Father on their own accord but sometimes a seed must be planted. We are the sower of that seed as we are commissioned by Jesus to spread His Word.

The picture of the father receiving the son back into relationship is a picture of how we should respond to repentant sinners as well:
So watch yourselves. “If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. Luke 17:3;

Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:1-2;

My brothers and sisters, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring that person back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of their way will save them from death and cover over a multitude of sins. James 5:19-20.

What is the core message of the Parable of the Prodigal Son that we have spent the last three Saturdays trying to get to? It boils down to this: It is only by God’s grace that we are saved, not by works that we may boast of some goodness that we perceive to be our own.

 

A Matter of the Heart

There is something about calling out the name of the Messiah that shows where the heart is. 

As they were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed Jesus. Two blind men sitting by the side of the road heard that he was passing by and shouted, “Son of David! Have pity on us!” The crowd scolded them and told them to be quiet, but they shouted all the louder, “Lord! Son of David! Have pity on us!” Jesus stopped, called them and said, “What do you want me to do for you?” They said to him, “Lord, open our eyes.” Filled with tenderness, Jesus touched their eyes; and instantly they received their sight and followed him. Matthew 20:29-34

Did these two blind men really understand who they were hearing was passing by them? Why would they call out except to receive the free gift of God’s Mercy and Grace both physically and Spiritually. How serious were these men about Jesus or were they just trying to stump Him to call Him a fraud. 

The Gospel does not tell us if He went over to them right away but Jesus stopped, and sought them out. They felt the Hand of God touch their flesh and like the potter that He is, remade them on the spot. Even better He touched their hearts and renewed their spirit. Of  course some will say, “Well yeah they followed Jesus because He just healed them”. Others may say, “They were players in Jesus scheme to manipulate the masses”. I would think more along the lines of this: When God touches a person physically and spiritually, their entire outlook on life changes. There is something about knowing the Word has reentered the heart and took away the pain and sadness that once was and filled it with God’s Love. Jesus opened their flesh eyes so they could see the Master’s face, and opened the heart’s eyes to see the Majestic Unrequited and full Love of God. They were two blind men who heard that the worker of miracles, teacher, healer, was coming for them.

What was the crowd trying to do? Did they want Jesus all to themselves and bring no more in? Where they fearful of someone else’s faith that it would be stronger and more acceptable in God’s sight? Or were they just wanting to get away from Jericho? All we know is that they tried to stifle the two so that Jesus would just continue on. That whole crowd saw a miracle that they tried to stop. Jesus loves everyone but the heart tells the truth.  

If they did not cry out to Him would Jesus have maybe just walked on by? Well, yes and no. Remember, Jesus wants us to come to Him with our burdens but we have to believe and ask for His help. Yes He would have probably healed them without a word because He sees what is on our hearts, but that would have been too easy. 

Where is your Heart? Will you stifle those who want to see Jesus or will you welcome them in to be saved. Is the church so full that the doors need to be shut to keep people in or is it so empty that the Spirit passes by. If your heart is filled even the smallest bit with Jesus, open it up all to Him so He can clean it. Do not judge another when you yourself will be judged. The matter of the heart relies on the head and the hand. Will you accomplish what God wants or what man desires?

The Choice is Yours but I would recommend the way to life.

 

 

 

 

   

How To Tell False From True-Didache 11

Didache 11Everyone likes a guest speaker every once in a while. Some are very good, some are confusing, and sometimes the message really does not make sense. There are genuine prophets and false prophets as Jesus had warned us. How are we to recognize the false from the real, the evil intentions from the good? We have been inundated with false prophets especially in the media for the last 60 years. The true and false prophets/preachers of today still can be recognized by this teaching.

Here in this next instruction we see the blessings and warnings when it comes to the traveling prophets.

Welcome the teacher when he comes to instruct you in all that has been said. But if he turns and trains you in another tradition to the destruction of this teaching, do not listen. If he teaches so as to increase righteousness and the knowledge of the Lord, receive him as the Lord. Act according to the precepts of the gospel concerning all apostles and prophets: Let every apostle who comes to you be received as the Lord. But he must not remain more than one day, or two, if there’s a need. If he stays three days, he is a false prophet. And when the apostle goes away, let him take nothing but bread to last him until his next night of lodging. If he asks for money, he is a false prophet. In addition, if any prophet speaks in the Spirit, you shall not try or judge him; for every sin will be forgiven, but this sin cannot be forgiven. But not everyone who speaks in the Spirit is a prophet; only he is a prophet who has the ways of the Lord about him. By their ways will the false prophet and the prophet be known. Any prophet who orders a meal in the Spirit does not eat it; if he does, he is indeed a false prophet. And any prophet who teaches the truth, but does not do what he teaches, is a false prophet. When a prophet, proved true, works for the mystery of the church in the world but does not teach others to do what he himself does, he will not be judged among you, for his judgment is already before God. The ancient prophets acted in this way, also. But whoever says in the Spirit, “Give me money,” or something else like this, you must not listen to him. But if he tells you to give for the sake of others who are in need, let no one judge him.

There are many ways to recognize a false prophet. The examples given here are: teaching in a way that is against or a perversion of the Gospel, preaching a false doctrine, overstaying the welcome, asking for compensation (particularly monetary) , non-spiritual actions, does not do as preached, these are things to watch out for. Do those not sound familiar these days especially?

When Jesus sent out the 70 this is what He said: “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not greet anyone on the road. “When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house. “When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is offered to you. Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’

So What Does This All Mean

First things, Jesus sent by 2 x 2. When you go it alone into an unknown territory you risk many things and even though God has your back, it is best to go with another. He sent them out without the material things of the world to weigh them down. He was teaching them to be reliant on God alone.

If a person overstays his/her welcome in a home (unless a parsonage is being built because believers want the individual to stay on the long term) then that person is not truly a prophet of God. Up until about the 1940s preachers sometimes went around to three or more communities preaching on Sundays and Wednesdays. They had one place where they hung their hat which was usually a small place central to the communities where he preached. Some did not even have vehicles and either walked or rode a horse to the different locations. And they did not ask for extra pay for traveling.

God’s Teachings are not about wealth in the physical sense, it is Spiritual

Speaking of pay, Prophets of old were hardly, if ever paid with money. It was goods and services which the community of believers provided for the Man of God. Once the Roman Catholics took over and the Pontiffs desired money over goods, corruption set in.

There are many who say they are people of God, but their god is the almighty dollar without which they could not survive. Money is a necessary evil to make certain things happen but it is how it is used, not for personal gain but for the good of mankind in the simplest form (food, clothing, shelter). Of the tithes and offerings that are asked for in the church, find out how much goes into the pocket of the preacher and the staff. If they make more than you (or more than $35,000) then give of yourself. In other words, give of yourself and your gifts. Give of food and other services offerings for that is what should be given. There is, however, a reason to give monetarily and that is for assistance in purchasing things for the missions and ministries of the church as well as building maintenance. Just make sure you designate it as such.

Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, Give to God what is God’s

Any prophet who orders a meal in the Spirit does not eat it; if he does, he is indeed a false prophet. This one is tricky When a preacher sits with others and is speaking on spiritual matters he must not eat, if he does then he is not in the spirit and is a false.
And any prophet who teaches the truth, but does not do what he teaches, is a false prophet. Remember the saying do as I say not as I do??? Pharisee and Sadducee anyone.
When a prophet, proved true, works for the mystery of the church in the world but does not teach others to do what he himself does, he will not be judged among you, for his judgment is already before God. Do not judge self-desiring prophet (One who cares for his own salvation and not others) for the judgement is already upon him. Remember, “do not judge lest ye be judged”.

Final thoughts

A Prophet (Preacher) of God is not to be found wanting of material things nor is the person to fend for self. This person should be living in humility not lavished in luxury. Also, if the pastor is found not following the Scripture and does not ask to be forgiven, makes excuses (i.e. we are all human or he/she made me do it) yet continues in the sin, it is time to get a new pastor. Just be aware of the wolf in sheep’s clothing.

Next Week: Teachings on Beggars, Wanderers, Peddlers

Prodigal Son P2: The Steadfast Son

 

The Prodigal Son p2

Jesus was about to expose the hearts of the Sanhedrin and others who cared more about their own spiritual well-being rather than others. Let us continue from where we left off from part one: After the younger son went inside with his father, the older son was coming in from his duties in the field.

The Hard Hearted Cannot Forgive

25 “Now his older son was in the field. As he came close to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 So he called one of the servants and asked, ‘What’s going on?’ 27 The servant told him, ‘Your brother has come back, and your father has slaughtered the calf that was fattened up, because he has gotten him back safe and sound.’ 28 But the older son became angry and refused to go inside.

The brother who went off and tried life has come home which makes the father very happy. I am guessing it had been quite a while so the elder more obedient son was fully set in his ways and had taken on some of the younger son’s tasks. I would probably be happy to see him return so he can resume his duties but that is not the point here. The elder son is disappointed because there was never a celebration in his honor. But why would there be. He has done exactly as he should have, or so he thinks. His refusal to accept and be happy that the younger is similar to the distaste certain faithful people have when a person who was a known sinner returns in repentance. It is hard to accept someone back when your heart is hard and does not truly remember or understand God’s Love, Compassion, and Forgiveness.

“So his father came out and pleaded with him. 29 ‘Look,’ the son answered, ‘I have worked for you all these years, and I have never disobeyed your orders. But you have never even given me a young goat, so that I could celebrate with my friends. 30 Yet this son of yours comes, who squandered your property with prostitutes, and for him you slaughter the fattened calf!’ 31 ‘Son, you are always with me,’ said the father, ‘and everything I have is yours. 32 We had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead but has come back to life — he was lost but has been found.’”

So, is the “obedient son” really obedient? He is the faithful son or so we are led to believe at first. This man stayed by his father’s side all those years working for the father in preparation for the day when he would receive the blessings that are rightly his. The eldest son represents the self-righteous who hear but do not really understand.

Anyone who claims to be in this light while hating his brother is still in the dark. The person who keeps loving his brother remains in the light, and there is nothing in him that could make him trip. But the person who hates his brother is in the dark — yes, he is walking in the dark, and he doesn’t know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes. 1 John 2:9-11

Forgiven?

The Pharisees of the day paid lip service to God and the people but secretly sinned and thought that their outward appearance and works guaranteed a spot at the heavenly banquet. These are the ones who let man’s law and traditions interfere with the truth even though they thought they were doing what God asked of them. Forward to modern times, he represents zealous believer who cannot accept the penitent sinner as brother in Christ. But God has compassion on them as the father showed compassion on his elder son. If we believe and are unable to love our neighbor as ourselves then we are being like the brother who did not accept the younger. In fact he saw the younger brother as a threat and would not forgive. He chose suffering and isolation over restoration and reconciliation.

For if you forgive others their offenses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; but if you do not forgive others their offenses, your heavenly Father will not forgive yours. Matthew 6:14-15

He allowed anger to take root in his heart to the point that he was unable to forgive or show compassion towards his brother, and for that matter the perceived sin of his father against him.

But for Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his face fell. The Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen? If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is contrary to you, but you must rule over it.” Genesis 4:5-7

Let’s recap for a moment what we learned here:
1. In order to be accepted into the house, we must accept the poor sinner who desires His mercy.
2. Do not be hard hearted towards a new believer but welcoming. Do not shut a door
3. God’s Love is the same for all believers so when a new believer comes to the fold, rejoice do not be jealous of his/her acceptance no matter the past if the person is known to you.
4. Suffering and isolation keeps you away from the joys of heaven. Being in a relationship with other believers, sharing stories of God’s Grace, Love, and Mercy with believers and the lost, and welcoming those who come home is what God desires of us.