lies

God Has No Opposite: Why We Can Live Unafraid

The Bible tells us that Satan prowls around like a roaring lion; it sounds scary but should we be afraid of him? What weapons does Satan have to use against us? In today’s short clip, Frank challenges us to consider the possibility that we just might be giving Satan too much credit. 


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God Has No Opposite: Why We Can Live Unafraid

God Has No Opposite- Why You Can Live Unafraid .jpeg

I’m concerned that the community of faith has given Satan far too much credit for what he accomplishes. There are seminars, books and conferences that try to teach you how to deal with Satan. 

Let’s look together at two verses of Scripture to see what God wants us to know about our enemy. 

  1. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” 

    Ephesians 6:12 (KJV)

    I want you to note that the key word in this verse from Ephesians, is “wrestle.” 

  2. “Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.”

1 Peter 2:11 (ESV)

I want you to note that the key word in this verse from 1 Peter, is “war.” 

Now tell me friend, which is the bigger issue, to “wrestle” or to go to “war”? You see, there are a limited amount of demons, and not only that, they are defeated enemies. They have been defanged, just as Satan who goes around roaring like a lion, has no teeth! 

The only real weapons Satan has are lies and deception. 

The flesh, however, goes with us twenty-four hours a day. Everywhere we go it wars against the Spirit and it constantly beckons us to choose the flesh instead of the Holy Spirit to meet our needs. 

So let's define the flesh. Flesh is seeking to meet legitimate needs in an illegitimate way, using our own resources to manipulate and control our environment to get our needs met, independent of God. And we all have graduate degrees in the flesh, don’t we? 

Beloved, let's stop giving credit to Satan. I think he's getting a lot of credit for what we do in the flesh. Let's not deify him. 

Satan is not the opposite of God, 

God has no opposite!

Trust the Holy Spirit, my friend, and walk in the power of the Spirit and you will accomplish the fruit of the Spirit instead of the lust of the flesh.


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The Second Worst Lie Ever Told

Words have the power to devastate another human being. We must take great care that when we speak, we are speaking Life into others and not death.

Words have the power to devastate another human being. We must take great care that when we speak, we are speaking Life into others and not death.

The second worst lie ever told. As you hear that I am sure that your brain is working feverishly to determine what that lie is. You know it; “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will “never” hurt me.” Of course, you knew it. It is a universal mantra on playgrounds and in homes around the world. More children know “sticks and stones” than they know John 3:16!

Students, teachers, and parents herald it as a truth that is supposed to heal and protect the heart of a child by minimizing the painful words that they hear; but it fails to accomplish that stated agenda because it is a lie! In my opinion, it is second only to the “WHOPPER” that Satan told in Genesis 3, when he told Adam and Eve, “You shall surely not die, you shall be as God!”

Now there are so many lies told on this planet, so many that could have made the “Top Two” that you might be wondering why these two lies are at the top of the list? What makes them so much worse than other lies? The one is obviously the worst lie ever told because it plunged the entire world into sin and death! I don’t believe anyone would dispute that. The second lie is second because it ministers the same end result of death – only on an individual basis as each destructive word is spoken and heard relationally.

Listen to Proverbs 18:21, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” Have you ever asked yourself, why that is so? Let’s ponder it together. Think back with me to Genesis 1 and 2. There we learn that God created the world and all that is in it. And how did He create? He spoke things into existence. The Creator spoke, and it was so! In a very similar, but much smaller way, that is how it is with us. We are made in the image of God – we are little creators who create in the same way He did, by speaking. Every time we speak, we are either creating Life or death in the ones we are speaking to! OUCH! Ouch indeed!

We have an awe-full (spelled purposely) responsibility. Every time we open our mouths we are either speaking Life or death into someone. When it is death, it hurts, and it hurts bad. I would put it this way – there is murder in our mouths. Proverbs 18:8 says, "Words go down deep into the heart." Words have the power to devastate another human being. That is why “sticks and stones” is a lie… words hurt and they hurt bad. We must take great care that when we speak, we are speaking Life into others and not death. I once heard a sociologist say that negative words are so powerful that we need ten positive affirmations to overcome one negative slander made against us. The tongue has so much potential for ministry but also the potential for murder. Which one will you be choosing to minister? Life or death? The choice is yours!

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Recovering God Wannabe

The desire to control is deeply rooted in the lie that each of us were birthed into: "we shall be as God".

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Pursuing the Truth Giver

Doctrine was NEVER intended to be an end in itself, but a means to lead us to the Person of Jesus!

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Suicide as a Counterfeit Gospel.

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Suicide is the counterfeit gospel: Die! Kill yourself and you will be free!

The true Gospel is "Die and you will be free". This refers of course to how we have been crucified and resurrected with Jesus.

Satan's message is similar, but destructive - and must be rejected. Further, know that those thoughts DO NOT COME FROM YOU! I Corinthians 2:16 says we have the mind of Christ".

The mind of Christ does not say 'kill yourself'. Those thoughts are the enemy's, put into your mind to destroy you. 

Sadness is understandable. Jesus was described as a man of sorrows... this is a sad world! It is ok to be sad, but as we look to Christ in the midst of our sadness, we will discover Joy that operates AT THE SAME TIME as our sorrow.  Christians are the only ones in the world who can have tears of sorrow streaming down their cheeks while singing praise with joy at the same time.

When we fix our eyes on our sorrow, we stay focused on the horizontal. Don't do that. Rather, go vertical: fix your eyes on Father, and discover how well He meets you in your sorrow with His peace and joy.

I know this from personal experience.

You are loved,

Frank.

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The Lies

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We live in a world filled with LIES! All of us have been influenced by these lies, there is no one who stands immune. That is because we have an adversary who is a liar from the beginning and the author of lies. Please understand, he wants to destroy us with His lies.

Our heavenly Father wrote us a book, but its so much more than a book! It is a love letter - to counteract those lies and teach us the truth. The truth will set us free from those lies and the subsequent bondage that those lies produce. That is why we need to understand how to read this love letter.

We must be very careful when reading the Bible and especially when teaching it, to let the scriptures "speak out" (exegesis) instead of us "speaking in" to them (eisegesis).  It is very important to let God say what He says instead of us speaking for Him. He tells it like it is, even if it makes us uncomfortable.

The reality is that for most of us what we need to hear is going to make us uncomfortable because we have become so accustomed to the lies that have been sown into our lives.

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Words Matter

What we really want is “the Christ Life” which has been placed in us  fully  and  completely  to be released through us as we abide in Him by faith.

What we really want is “the Christ Life” which has been placed in us fully and completely to be released through us as we abide in Him by faith.

Words are so important because they communicate meaning. Because this is true we must take great care in the use of our words, so as not to communicate what we really don’t mean.

That is why Proverbs says, “The wise man ponders how to answer.”

This is especially true when we speak words about God because there is the ever-present danger that we will speak what is not really true, even though what we say may sound really good or may even be laced with enough truth that the subtle error we have just added is not easily recognized. 

Recently, I was speaking at a conference and I heard repeatedly the thought of our being “Christ-like.” I am going to be picky here, but it is out of necessity. Listen closely to the language that was being spoken. “I want to be more “Christ-like.” “I am becoming more “Christ-like.” I understand what they are trying to say, but stop for a minute and ponder those words. Do we really want to use such language? Think about it. Who is Christ? He is God, the Son. So when we say, “I want to be Christ-like” – we could be mistakenly communicating that we want to be “like God”… Have you heard those words before? Of course, you have, that is the language the enemy used to seduce Adam and Eve. It is the language of "The Fall.” “In the day that you eat, you will be like God! 

I don’t want to try to be like God and neither do you because all we can ever offer in such an attempt is a cheap and very poor imitation of God. What we really want is “the Christ Life” which has been placed in us fully and completely to be released through us as we abide in Him by faith. What we really want to say is that we are experiencing and expressing that Life, His Life, which has been placed into us in the glory of the New Covenant – as Colossians says, it is “Christ in us, the hope of glory.”

One more thought, there is a sense in which I do want to be “Christ-like” – but that is NOT in terms of trying to be like Him in behavior, but like Him in His method.

He lived a life of faith, a life of complete and utter dependence on His Father.

He said in John 5, “I can do nothing without My Father.” And that is exactly what He called us to as well. “He told us in John 15, “Without Me, you can do nothing.” In John 6:57 He declared, “I live ‘out of’ the Father, now you live ‘out of‘ Me.” 

DO NOT try to act like Christ, or seek to be “Christ-like” in your behavior. But do indeed be like Him in His method --- trusting Him to be all that He is to all that we need.

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We All Have Control Issues

God is all those things. He knows all things, He is everywhere, He is all things to people, He is strong, and HE IS IN CONTROL!

God is all those things. He knows all things, He is everywhere, He is all things to people, He is strong, and HE IS IN CONTROL!

I once had a "not so happy" woman come up to me and declare with no small amount of intensity, "Frank Friedmann! You are a controller!"

To which I replied, "Yes maam, but you know what the difference is between us? I am willing to admit it!"

We ALL struggle with control issues.

We want to control our circumstances, control our kids, control our spouse, control our congregation, and control the pastor. Control! Control! Control!... but dig deeper!

Why? Why do we want to control?

Because the desire (need) to control is deeply rooted in the lie that ALL of us were birthed into with the help of our brother Adam, that "we shall be as God". By the way, that is why we struggle with wanting to know it all, cannot admit that we do not know all, find it difficult to admit we are wrong, feel the need to be strong, and have this crazy thought that we are supposed to be the source of life for others.

God is all those things. He knows all things, He is everywhere,
He is all things to people, He is strong, and HE IS IN CONTROL!

We are not because we are not God.

Herein lies the glory... we were never designed to be strong, or have it all together, or know all things, or be in control.  We were created to be dependent on the One Who is all those things and offers to be all that He is to us in the moment of faith!

I do not believe there is a man alive who really comprehends how "BLITZED" we were by the lie of the garden and how it continues to effect all of us as we "labor to rest" in the finished work of Christ.

So, let's move further on in the journey and begin admitting the truth...
... that all of us are "recovering god's"
... that all of us struggle with control issues
... that all of us think we know more than we know
... that all of us find it hard to embrace and live in our weakness
... that ours is really a "vision problem"
... that we see ourselves as bigger than we really are
... that we see God as a lot smaller than He really is

Let's start running the church like an A.A. meeting!!!

"Hello, I am Frank and I am a recovering god wannabe"

And all the other "recovering god's" say: "Hello Frank"

AWESOME!!! Now we can take off the fig leaves, that were never designed for us in the first place, put on the righteousness of Christ, and start being who we really are... weak and frail people who have an opportunity to live FROM a REALLY BIG GOD WHO is crazy in love with them. WOW!!!

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Truly Let Go

Just “let go and let God!”   Oh   my friend, to do that is  no  easy thing at all.

Just “let go and let God!” Oh my friend, to do that is no easy thing at all.

One of the main accusations we in the economy of grace receive from the religious world is that we are a camp of “easy believism” and passivity. Some of that ridicule has been earned as people within our camp have heralded the words “let go and let God” as a trite formula for which to tackle all of life. Though this is in actuality a true statement, that method of employing those words can very easily sound like passivity.

Just “let go and let God!” Oh my friend, to do that is no “easy” thing at all.

Remember that we were all birthed into the lie that we shall be as God. We all have a built-in belief system that we are strong, have the knowledge, are in control, and we can tackle anything that comes our way. This must be repented of; the truth is we were never designed to be strong, know all things, or be in control, but we were created to be dependent on the One Who is all those things.

Further, we are as Psalm 139 says, “fearfully and wonderfully made.” We are so fantastically created that we can accomplish so much in any given day without even giving a thought about God. Our very assets with which we were created can enable us to function so well in sight, that we do not see the need to live by faith.

I would put it this way, if our assets hinder us from trusting God,
then we must see them as liabilities.

To “let go” of those assets which we can so easily see and trust, and choose instead to trust a God we cannot see, requires great effort and will. No, my friend, there is nothing “easy” or “passive” about living by faith. It is in fact hard work! I think of the words of Hebrews, “Let us labor to enter into rest!”

Let us STRIVE to truly let go and let us STRIVE to truly let God!

Lies and Truth

Truth sets us free from the bondage of those lies!

Truth sets us free from the bondage of those lies!

LIES! LIES! LIES!
They are everywhere! In the workplace, in our families, IN OUR GOVERNMENT, and especially and sadly in our churches!

That is why Truth, when it is revealed, is so very precious to us. Truth sets us free from the bondage of those lies! There is however, a sneaky and grave danger in our reception of the truth or revelation that we receive.

We can become enamored with the truth, instead of the TRUTH GIVER! We can glory in "the revelation" instead of the Revealer!

When we do that we become "men with a message" or "women with a word" instead of sons/daughters of God boasting in their Father (Son and Spirit). And instantly following on our heels is the PRIDE of being RIGHT over and against all those others who are WRONG! Oh how sneaky!

Remember the words of Jesus in John 5:39... "you search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life, but it is these that bear witness of ME!...

(and then the sad conclusion)

"... but you are unwilling to come to ME that you might have LIFE!"

Doctrine was NEVER intended to be an end in itself, but a means to lead us to the Person of Jesus!

He came to have a relationship with you...

He came to have a relationship with you...

Perhaps I should say it this way:
Jesus did not come to this planet for the express purpose of dying for your sins... He came to have a relationship with you and dying for your sins was the only way He could get that relationship.

This is the great glory that we have through faith in the Person and work of Christ --- THAT WE KNOW HIM, THE POWER OF HIS RESURRECTION, AND THE FELLOWSHIP OF HIS SUFFERINGS (don't forget that one)...

Glory in the awe and wonder that through receiving HIM, we have the authority to be called a child of God!