About Tim Burt

Saturday, March 30, 2013

An Easter Message

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

One night Renee and I went to an event that we had been invited to. We had no idea how to dress for it. There was nothing in the invitation to give us direction in how to dress. I was unable to get a hold of the people that had invited us to ask them. We decided to dress nice casual. When we got there, what Renee had been wearing seemed to fit fine with what everyone else was wearing. For me it was a problem. Most every man had on a tie and jacket or suit coat and I had neither. I felt woefully under-dressed and felt self-conscience about it. I apologized repeatedly that night for my dress and never felt comfortable. Feeling uncomfortable is never good and especially when you feel that way with God.

Prior to my receiving Jesus personally as my Lord and my Savior, I ignorantly believed that Almighty God - the God of the universe - the God over all mankind, was high in Heaven on His throne having to respond to billions of people and couldn't possibly think about or care about all that I was concerned about in my life. Again, in my ignorant thinking, He was up there. I was down here. He was busy. I was insignificant. My thinking was, bother Him only in extreme emergencies and even then, don't get your hopes up too high. That was ignorant and blind thinking and has nothing to do with the reality of whom and how God is. That kind of ignorance can hurt us and keep us from God's love and help. Hosea 4:6 says, "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge..."



The Bible teaches us about the Holy of Holies. It was ad interior portion of the tabernacle. There was a huge veil - a type of ornate curtain that hung down separating the Holy of Holies from the first tabernacle. No one was permitted to enter it except the high priest. When Jesus died upon the cross, an earthquake happened. Powerful spiritual forces were in operation. We read about them in Matthew 27:49-54. "Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up His spirit. And, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks were split; and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints that slept arose, and came out of the graves after His resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many. Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, truly this was the Son of God."

In this event we just read, it said, “the veil of the temple was torn in two from the top to the bottom..." The significance of this to us is powerful. Jesus had given His life as a sacrifice for our sins. That sacrifice destroyed the veil. that separation between us and God. Man previously had to go to a priest to ask and get forgiveness of sin. Now that was abolished through Jesus. Jesus became the priest who offered Himself - the perfect and final sacrifice for all. That is what makes this Hebrews 4:16 so powerful and such a grace to our life: "So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it."
When I come boldly before Him, I live by faith in the fact that Jesus has washed my sins away. That is what allows me to come boldly. The Bible says He has washed me and put His robe of righteousness on me and that is His doing. Yet, when I come before Him - in the presence of His Holiness, I feel woefully unclean and woefully inadequate. I feel this way because I know the thoughts that run through my head. I know the inappropriate conversations I enter into. I know actions that fall short in my life. I am humbled within His presence. That makes me desire always to love Him more for loving me despite my shortcomings and for cleansing me from this unrighteousness. My love for Him grows knowing that He desires to help me, love me, and allow me to partake of His grace - His supernatural help of wisdom, resource, and ability where I would otherwise be bankrupt and without hope.

We don't need an appointment with God. He is not too busy. He does not want us to be uncomfortable around Him. We won’t be under-dressed or unacceptable. God is able to love, cherish, nurture and help countless billions of people - each one personally and with great affection all at the same time. That is what makes Him God. We all receive His attention if we understand that and believe it by faith.

He has removed the veil - the force of sin that had previously separated us from God. Jesus' death accomplished that. He calls out to us. He will help us on every level. That is the Easter message. Isa 55:1-7 says it wonderfully. "Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare. Give ear and come to me; hear me, that your soul may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you... Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.”

God bless you and have a blessed Easter!

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2013 All rights reserved
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Homosexuality and Easter

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


It is interesting how the subject of homosexuality is so prevalent in the news as we come up on Easter Weekend. Last weekend, a man struck a conversation with me after seeing a book I was reading. He told me how distraught he and his college age daughter were at being attacked and called a “bigot” and “hater” just because they felt homosexuality was wrong. They wanted to know what I thought about homosexuality.

I will share a condensed version with you of what I shared with him. Homosexuality is sin. So is gluttony, fornication, lying, stealing, adultery, lust, and on and on. The Bible says so! People can belittle and berate the Bible, but those that do, do so ignorantly. It is the most read book in History. It is historically accurate over the ages. It is declared as the "inspired word of God," and the word of God by Jesus. Jesus is either the greatest hoax, liar, deceiver, and fraud ever injected into society, or He is exactly who He said He was, the Son of God sent to be the Savior of the world. Even secular historians like Josephus recorded Jesus, His life, and miracles. Jesus is who He said He is. He came to save you and I from our sins by taking the punishment we deserve for them, upon Himself – this as an act of love and offer of reconciliation through our faith in Him as our personal Savior.

Jesus continually referred to the scriptures as sacred. They were His constant and only reference for all of God’s ways. To those that didn’t understand them, He said, “Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God. (Matthew 22:29 (NLT)) Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words (scripture) will never pass away.“ (Matthew 24:35 (NIV))

When we become a Christian, the Holy Spirit takes up residence within us and opens our eyes to understanding the scriptures. That is why non-believers cannot understand them. They do not have the Holy Spirit until they believe! Jesus forgives our sins but in our new life in Him, wants us to learn what sin is and restrain ourselves from sin. The Christian life is a life of restraint as well as a life of reaching out to others with the love of Christ. The restraint of sin and evil is what leads to a more beautiful and peaceful world. All religions believe that! I explained to this man that homosexuality is wrong and sin. It doesn’t make any difference what the rhetoric is. People will always try to justify or create excuse for what they want to do to fulfill the lusts of their flesh. God does not excuse it.

Romans 1:25-28 (NIV) says, “They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator--who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion. Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done.”

The homosexual says, "I was created this way” but the truth is, with the exception of someone born with a physical genetic defect, there is no agreed upon scientific proof to this by science and researches overall! None! They may have desired a wrong fleshly desire, but that is why God wants us to learn restraint! The homosexual says “I was born this way.” Men and women may be born with a more masculine or feminine bent as perceived and accepted by society – from sports to arts, but that does not make one a homosexual.

Men, if left abandoned to sexual desires could say, “Well I am born highly sexual and can’t help but look at women, masturbate, fornicate, read porn, and think about sex non-stop. I am wired this way!” (Most men won’t say this because their wife would throw them out or their girlfriends dump them.) The majority of men could say that but their wife or girlfriend and God’s Word teaches us restraint, how to think, and how to love. Men either learn to live a restrained life, or they lead a secret life, or they live like a dog in heat – giving over constantly to sexual desires of all kind. But God’s word teaches restraint as a part of life. So, all people have to show sexual restraint. None of us get to have a sexual free-for-all. It’s contrary to how God wants us to live and it would destruct society because God did not make it this way.

I am not a hater of anyone. I am not a homophobic. I am not a bigot. I have had a number of homosexual friends whom I treat with great respect, love, and kindness, yet we agree to disagree. They will have to decide their spiritual destiny. Marriage from the beginning was God’s plan for a man and a woman. It is more than a legal union. It is a spiritual union blessed of God that began with Adam and Eve – his wife, in the garden. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife.” (Mark 10:7 (NIV)) God created the male and female version of man and animals to be “fruitful and multiply.” Homosexuals cannot naturally procreate and were not created to do so. For anyone to ignore this basic obvious truth in order to make someone feel more “accepted” is to make sin feel more acceptable. This doesn’t help you, them, or society. Yet to treat a homosexual with name calling or disrespect is also wrong. Marriage belongs between one man and one woman only!  

The religious homosexual community twists the meaning of scriptures, do away with scripture, or make their own version of God to their liking – a true form of idolatry. As Christians, if we don’t fight for a more moral society based on scripture with love and redemption from sin as it’s goal, we will end up with a godless, immoral society that yes, will end up like a Sodom and Gomorrah and will eventually end up with the judgment of God upon it.

The homosexual communities’ name calling of Christians who do not agree with homosexuality as “haters and bigots,” is really who they are if they say it. Christians that do act like haters and bigots are not Christians at all! People disagree about many things and fight for legislation based on their beliefs.  Christians simply need to take the time to continue to let their core beliefs be formed on God's Word, not on feelings of pressure and intimidation, or a wrong perception of what love it. God knows what love is and tells us all that a part of love is to restrain from sinful activity, no matter what it is. Parents teach their children to restrain their wrong activities every day.

We are all imperfect and miss it and need to repent and get it right. God’s grace and mercy is great and reaches out to us all as we work to conform to God’s ways. He is there to help us, not condemn or beat us up. But, the Lord does want us to change! Restraint is a part of the Christian life! Rom 6:12 (NLT) "Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires" As a Christian, we are to hate sin and evil. Psalms 97:10 (NIV)” Let those who love the LORD hate evil, for He guards the lives of his faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked.” Hating sin is not hating the sinner. Like Jesus, we reach out in love with the redemptive good news of Jesus' love – the Easter and daily message of Christ, but hate sin – first in our own life and then in overall in society. Use your influence to prevent it as this is what God would have you do!

For more reading: More Research on Marriage and the Family

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt

Copyright© 2013 All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Monday, March 18, 2013

We Pray For You Constantly!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Hi all,

I will not be writing and posting again until Tuesday April 2nd because Renee and I will be on a two week sabbatical. Very seldom do I ever take time of from writing and thank you in advance for your understanding and grace in this.

There are hundreds of posts in the blog archives to go back through so have at it! God will speak to your heart through them. We covet your prayers and promise that we will be praying for you!  Again, I'll be back to writing on Tuesday, April 2, 2013.

1 Thessalonians 1:2 (NLT) "We always thank God for all of you and pray for you constantly"

God bless you richly,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt

Copyright© 2013 All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Friday, March 08, 2013

Instruct me Oh Lord!

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Hebrews 12:5-6 “And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: "My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; For whom the Lord loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives."

Sometimes when we hear the word chastening, we think of a spanking or beating. This has wrongly been interpreted over the years by many religions teachers as “God makes bad things happen to us as a form of chastening when we sin and do bad things.” This couldn’t be further from the truth. God sees you as washed in the blood of Jesus. He sees you as spotless. He loves you and wants to help you. Your sins have been forgiven. He wants to help you.

God’s method of disciplining us is through His Word. Since He is a Spirit and we must worship Him in Spirit and in truth, He speaks to us through His Word. Because we are physically adults and He leads us by His Spirit, God will lead us to His Word to speak to us. Romans 8:14 “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” God will not force us to do anything. If we refuse to let God speak to, correct, instruct, and discipline us through the Word, that’s our choice and frankly – our loss. But we will miss out on the very thing that helps us transform into His image and produce better fruit within our lives. But, His intent is not to hurt us or condemn us or make us feel guilty. His Word is to cleanse us, wash us, bring forgiveness and help us live out lives that represent the Christ life. As you grow and mature, you can move from the place where you feel condemned by it even though He is not condemning you, to a place where you embrace God’s correction knowing that it is refining you into a better person. God calls His words of chastisement and discipline words of exhortation!

The Greek definition of the words rebuke and chastening imply “to point on what is false or untrue with the intent to correct.” It also means to “prick your heart showing you are wrong with the intention of helping you get it right.” Chastening helps us recognize and learn godly behavior from ungodly behavior and teaches and instructs us how to walk godly. Even if we fail over and over – which we do, God’s grace will be there to help us work to get it right. God isn’t interested in beating us up nor is He trying to lay guilt trips on us. He is interested in helping us learn how to cooperate with His will because that cooperation transforms us and helps draw the very blessing Jesus provided into our lives.
I remember when I was a three month old Christian. I had given my life to the Lord but knew little to nothing about the Bible. I had many behaviors that were absolutely wrong according to God’s Word. The problem was, I didn’t know God’s Word. As I was sitting in church one Sunday, the Pastor was preaching a sermon taking us through the Word that touched on all these behaviors. It convicted my heart. I learned right there and then what I should change. The Word of God chastened me. I was happy to make the changes. Some came easily and some I had to work harder at. God wasn’t mad at me. He just wanted to help me. A short time after that, a guy at work said, “Hey Burt, How come I never hear you swear or see you drink anymore? You used to swear and get drunk all the time. What’s going on with you?

I had changed. Some weren’t comfortable with it and others – especially my bosses, liked it. I suddenly began to be looked at for promotion in my job.

Chastening hurt when I first realized that I had sinful or negative behaviors, but over the years, I have grown to appreciate God’s Word showing me His better way! As Psalm 94:12 says, “Blessed is the man that you chastise and instruct from your law O Lord.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt

Copyright© 2013 All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

God's Plan to Manage Anger

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt


Do you ever get angry feelings that stir in you and grow and eventually come out like a volcano?

There were times as a young adult that I would occasionally erupt like a volcano. I am ashamed of those days. I have not let that happen in my life in a great many years.

Anger is a valid emotion but one that has a boundary and whose line can too easily be crossed. We are instructed in Eph 4:26-27, “In your anger do not sin…” This verse is instructional and insightful. God clearly teaches us that anger in itself is not sin, that it can be carried to the point of sin, and that it can give the devil a foothold. That literally means “giving the devil occupancy – a place to dwell.”

For some people, their anger not only crosses the line of inappropriateness  resulting in sin, but they practically invite the devil to sit down at their table and sign a long term lease to live with them. How does that happen?

Anger unrestrained will lead to all kinds of outbursts that will most likely cause regret. People that sin in their anger seldom stay on the issue they are angry over. They often draw past offenses and hurts to the scene. This causes anger to swell. That can become the early stage of rage which always leads to irrational thinking. Eruption is now brewing below the surface. Unbridled anger or rage leads to irrational thoughts that then lead to thoughts of every kind of evil. James 3:16 says it like this, “For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.”

As words begin to erupt from this anger, they begin to flow like lava and the devil now has a foothold. The words will be destructive and do damage to anyone in its path. In many cases, those words do long term damage that is difficult for people to recover from. Some never do! 

God’s wisdom tells us the danger in letting our anger ever cross the boundaries of inappropriateness.

Proverbs 27:4 says, “Anger is cruel and fury overwhelming…”

Prov 14:17 says, “A quick-tempered man does foolish things….”

Prov 21:19 “It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.”

Prov 29:22 “An angry man stirs up dissension (strife), and a hot-tempered one commits many sins.”

Proverbs 22:24 reveals that anger can affect others, even becoming like an infectious disease. It says, “Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, and do not associate with one easily angered.”

Proverbs 25:23 says, “As the north wind brings rain: so does an angry countenance bring a backbiting tongue.” The word angry here literally means “foam at the mouth” and is referring to the evil look of unbridled anger. The term “backbiting tongue” refers to the abundance of evil words spoken that absolutely cover their target with a blanket of ill spoken and hurtful words.

If you are a person that gets mad all the time, you – not those around you are the problem. You are selfish and have made everything in life about yourself and those violating you. Your demand for perfection is born out of a need to personally control that is sinful and wrong. You need to switch your focus from others to getting your own attitude right. People are not perfect and you have a view of yourself that is far too high. You are too forgiving of your own faults and too critical of others. You need to take on God’s temperament.

Psalms 103:8 reveals, “The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.” God isn’t expecting people to meet His perfection. He had Jesus come and do that. Jesus was the only one who could. God is driven by love to help people make progress with great patience. He sees the best in us, not the worst. He dwells on what we can become, and not simply what we are at the moment. He dwells on building us up and not tearing us down. 

If anger is a problem for you, here are some steps of wisdom that can help break that in you.

When angry – stick with the issue you are dealing with. Keep grievances from the past out! Ask yourself, how big of an issue is this in the scope of the big picture of life? Is the fact that Billy left his room a mess today (even if you’ve told him a hundred times before) going to be the first step to the end of the world or to his personal demise? Think solution, not problem. Just keep patiently working with him. Ask yourself if you have ever violated what you are angry about or something similar? Would you have liked it if your dad or boss screamed at you? How would you have liked them to help you work through needed change? Can you be merciful and help instruct them in a calm way how to make changes? Can you be patient while they make those changes? Is there anything you’ve apologized to the Lord for violating umpteen times? Would you rather be known for being merciful, kind, and helpful or angry, tough, and ruthless? Which more represents God?

To keep anger from turning to rage, limit yourself to how much you think about or mull it over. Speak few words about it as words cause anger to grow. Pray to ask God to help you forgive – seek forgiveness for your own personal faults at the time of your anger toward someone else. Finally, pray for that person from a spirit of love and faith with the sincere desire to help them.

Break this into a plan and you will have a plan to reduce rage to anger and anger to appropriate anger.

Eph 4:26-27, “In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt

Published by Pastor Tim Burt

Copyright© 2013 All rights reserved

http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/