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Authentic New Testament Solutions

Healing Devotions: Day 3

Today’s Scripture: Yes, I (Jesus) am the vine; you are the branches . . . if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted (John 15:5a, 7)!

Confession: I have been born-again and am being continually filled with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit teaches me God’s Word, and God’s Word teaches me about the Holy Spirit. We abide together. My life is empowered by Christ, and is directed by God’s Word. As a result, as my life is in harmony with God, I pray God’s will. And when I pray God’s will, my prayers are always answered.

The Lord’s Prayer: Our Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

Healing Scriptures

Uncertainty Corrected

We need not pray “if it be your will” when praying for the sick, because the Bible makes it clear that God wants us well. Mark 1:41 records Jesus setting the record straight, it was his will to heal, which is why Christians world-wide devote themselves to people being well, whether through nutrition, exercise, supernatual intervention, medical science, or simply loving care. Everyone who effectively works for us to be as healthy as possible is aligned with God’s overall purpose.

. . . Jesus reached out and touched him. ‘I am willing,’ he said. ‘Be healed’ (Mark 1:41b)!

The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake.He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent (2 Peter 3:9).

Are any of you sick? You should call for the elders of the church to come and pray over you, anointing you with oil in the name of the Lord. Such a prayer offered in faith will heal the sick, and the Lord will make you well. And if you have committed any sins, you will be forgiven (James 5:14-15).

Numbers 20 tells us about the children of Israel becoming impatient. They began to complain against their leaders. As a result, poisonous snakes began biting people, killing them. After asking God for help, God instructed Moses to make a replica of a poisonous snake and attach it to a pole. Everyone who was bitten could simply look at the replica of the snake on the pole lived. The Bible says in vs. 9,

So Moses made a snake out of bronze and attached it to a pole. Then anyone who was bitten by a snake could look at the bronze snake and be healed.

The bronze snake on the pole is a type of Christ. When we have poison in our lives, we can repent and look to Christ and be healed.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

. . . and many people followed him. He healed all the sick among them (Matthew 12:15b).

They begged him to let the sick touch at lease the fringe of his robe, and all who touched him were healed (Matthew 14:36).

Everyone tried to touch him, because healing power went out from him, and he healed everyone (Luke 6:19).

That evening many demon-possessed people were brought to Jesus. He cast out the evil spirits with a simple command, and he healed all the sick (Matthew 8:16-17).

Christ is still healing the sick, in order to fulfill the prophet’s words from Isaiah 53:4-5 and referred to by Jesus in Matthew 8:16-17. When these verses use “our” or “we,” it includes YOU!

Yet it was our weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows that weighed him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God, a punishment for his own sins! But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed (Isaiah 53:4-5).

That evening many demon-possessed people were brought to Jesus. He cast out the evil spirits with a simple command, and he healed all the sick. This fulfilled the word of the Lord through the prophet Isaiah, who said, ‘He took our sickness and removed our diseases’ (Matthew 8:16-17).

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Pastor Ted Haggard, DD, CHBC, is a Bible teacher with an emphasis on New Testament solutions to the human condition. His Bible teaching is informed by biblical scholarship, Choice Theory (Glasser), Attachment Theory (Johnson), and Behavioral Studies using DISC (Rohm).

This and other blogs by Pastor Ted Haggard are available at http://www.tedhaggardblog.com as a ministry of St. James Church. If you would like to strengthen the ministry of St. James Church and Pastor Ted Haggard by giving, please use the “give” tab at http://www.saintjameschurch.com.

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Authentic New Testament Solutions

Healing Devotions: Day 2

Today’s Scripture: For in him we live and move and exist. As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ (Acts 17:28).

Confession: In him I live . . . and move . . . and exist in power. In him I live a rich and satisfying life! I am his child. I am God’s property. I am his representative. What a vast storehouse of power he placed in me! In Christ my Savior and Lord I have life . . . energy . . . healing . . . and strength for impossible tasks!

The Lord’s Prayer: Our Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

COVID-19: In the world today, disease and sickness are claiming a terrible toll on human lives. In spite of the fact that medical science is demonstrating its greatest achievements, disease persists to ravage human lives all over the world.

The tragedy is that these sicknesses and diseases affect the bodies of thousands of people, while too many stand by with little more than words of sympanthy and pity, assuring the sufferer that it must be God’s will; that it will work out for the best; that God is teaching us some lessson in humity; that possibly it is God’s chastisement; or that by it, we are being drawn closer to him who often works his will in our lives through sickness. These are lies.

We Christians do not have to be sick, any more than we need to be sinful. It is always God’s desire to heal us, which is why we stand with our doctors, nurses, and anyone else who is fighting sickness and disease. God wants us well, and he uses a variety of tools to help us be better off. In Heaven, there is no sickness or disease, so when we pray, Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven, we could use my paraphrase, Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, in our earthen vessels as it is in Heaven.
Scriptures on Healing

Just think how much more the blood of Christ will purify our consciences from sinful deeds so that we can worship the living God. For by the power of the eternal Spirit, Christ offered himself to God as a perfect sacrifice for our sins. That is why he is the one who mediates a new covenant between God and people, so that all who are called can receive the eternal inheritance God has promised them. For Christ died to set them free from the penalty of the sins they had committed under that first covenant (Hebrews 9:14-15).

My dear children, I am writing this to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate who pleads our case before the Father. He is Jesus Christ, the one who is truly righteous. He himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins – and not only our sins but the sins fo all the world (1 John 1-2).

Note: There is no better way to know the will of God than by reading the gospels, which record the teachings and the works of Christ. Jesus was the physical expression of the Father’s will. His life was both a revelation and a manifestation of the unchanging love and will of God. He acted out the will of God for all of us to see.

Then I (Jesus) said, ‘Look, I have come to do your will, O God – as is written about me in the Scriptures (Hebrews 10:7).

For I (Jesus) have come down from Heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will (John 6:38).

Note: After a three year study by a commission appointed by the Episcopalian Church, they reported:

“The healing of Jesus was done as a revelation of God’s will for humanity. . . No longer can the church pray for the sick with that faith-destroying phrase, If it be your will.”

Only one place in the Bible was Jesus ever asked if it was his will to heal. In Mark 1:40-41 the Bible says,

A man with leprosy came and knelt in front of Jesus, begging to be healed. ‘If you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean,’ he said. Moved with compassion, Jesus reached out and touched him. ‘I am willing,’ he said, ‘Be healed!

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Pastor Ted Haggard, DD, CHBC, is a Bible teacher with an emphasis on New Testament solutions to the human condition. His Bible teaching is informed by biblical scholarship, Choice Theory (Glasser), Attachment Theory (Johnson), and Behavioral Studies using DISC (Rohm).

This and other blogs by Pastor Ted Haggard are available at http://www.tedhaggardblog.com as a ministry of St. James Church. If you would like to strengthen the ministry of St. James Church and Pastor Ted Haggard by giving, please use the “give” tab at http://www.saintjameschurch.com.

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Authentic New Testament Solutions

Healing Devotions: Day 1

Today’s Scripture: “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved” (Romans 10:9-10).

Confession: I believe in my heart Jesus Christ is the Son of God. I believe he was raised from the dead for my justification. I confess him as my Lord and Savior. Jesus is my Lord. He is dominating my life. He is guiding me. He is leading me.

The Lord’s Prayer: Our Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever and ever. Amen.

Scriptures on Healing:

He sent out his word and healed them, snatching them from the door of death (Psalm 107:20).

For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believers – the Jew first and also the Gentile (Romans 1:16).

My child, pay attention to what I say. Listen carefully to my words. Don’t lose sight of them. Let them penetrate deep into your heart, for they bring life to those who find them, and healing to their whole body (Proverbs 4: 20-22).

God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs (Matthew 5:3).

You must serve only the Lord your God. If you do, I will bless you with food and water, and I will protect you from illness. There will be no miscarriages or infertility in your land, and I will give you long, full lives (Exodus 23:25-26).

If you will listen carefully to the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in his sight, obeying his commands and keeping all his decrees, then I will not make you suffer any of the diseases I sent on the Egyptiuans; for I am the Lord who heals you (Exodus 15:26).

. . . it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him (Hebrews 11:6).

But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord (James 1:6-7).

God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised and not carried it through (Numbers 23:19)?

Praise the Lord who has given rest to his people Israel, just as he promised. Not one word has failed of all the wonderful promises he gave through his servant Moses (1 Kings 8:56).

Your eternal word, O Lord, stands firm in heaven (Psalm 119:89).

I (God) will certainly carry out all my plans (Jeremiah 1:12b).

I am the Lord who heals you (Exodus 15:26b).

When God brought his people out of Egypt, there were approximately 3,000,000 of them. None of them were weak because of God’s Word being strong among them. Note the two Scriptures below and let them strengthen your confidence in God:

That night the people of Israel left Rameses and started for Succoth. There were about 600,000 men plus all the women and children (Exodus 12:37).

The Lord brought his people out of Egypt, loaded with silver and gold; and not one among the tribes of Israel even stumbled (Psalm 105:37).

. . . I see very clearly that God shows no favoritism (Acts 10:34).

So if God has done it for anyone, he’s willing to do it for you!

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Pastor Ted Haggard, DD, CHBC, is a Bible teacher with an emphasis on New Testament solutions to the human condition. His Bible teaching is informed by biblical scholarship, Choice Theory (Glasser), Attachment Theory (Johnson), and Behavioral Studies using DISC (Rohm).

This and other blogs by Pastor Ted Haggard are available at http://www.tedhaggardblog.com as a ministry of St. James Church. If you would like to strengthen the ministry of St. James Church and Pastor Ted Haggard by giving, please use the “give” tab at http://www.saintjameschurch.com.

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The Series for Healthy Relationships

Who Am I and Who Are These People I’m Living With?

Today I will start a series of blogs for you who are quarantined in your homes with your family and/or friends. I’ve compiled and adapted this material taken from Personality Insights written by Dr. Robert Rohm, along with some of my own insights for families to enjoy a little fun exercise every day. Today, being the first of the series, is about you meeting you and the people you are quarantined with. Let’s begin.

Most people have predictable patterns of behavior – specific personality styles. There are four basic personality types, also known as temperaments. They blend together to create your unique personality. To help you understand why you often feel, think, and act the way you do, I’ll describe for you the Four Temperament Models of Human Behavior. As you read this, think about yourself and, if you want to have some fun, get your family together and each of you talk about which of the four styles is dominant in each of you. Each of us has a dominant style that is then blended with the other subordinate styles that give all of us a unique blend. That unique blend is what makes you, you.

Let me begin by saying that God created each of you with a unique personality that is perfectly suited to fulfill God’s perfect plan for your life. And once you identify your dominant personality type, you can talk with your family and pray about how to use the personality God has given you for the good of yourself, your family, and others. Personalities can be used for either good or bad, so in this series, I’ll coach you on the value of the personality God has given you and how to use it as a Spirit-filled Christian. Your same personality can become out-of-control and be used in ways that may be self-destructive, hurtful to those who love you, and harmful to others. How you use your personality is your choice. Your personality, though, is given to you by God. You have the power to choose its effect.

Let’s talk about you.

 You have an internal motor that drives you. It has a fast pace that makes you generally more outgoing, or it has a slow pace that makes you generally more reserved. Everyone is wired differently. If you are an outgoing person, you may tend to speak and move with higher levels of energy. Even your gestures and facial expressions may have more passion then a more reserved individual has. If you are a reserved person you may tend to speak more quietly, less forcefully. Your gestures and facial expressions may seem more guarded than the expressions of a more outgoing individual.

In addition to having a motor that drives you, you also have a compass that determines your activities, which is whether or not you are primarily task-oriented or people-oriented. If you are a task-oriented person, you will tend to focus more on the job to be done or the goal to be accomplished. You will not be highly influenced by the opinions of others. You will be more influenced by logic unless you are more people-oriented. If you are, you will tend to enjoy the company of others and seem to focus on people as being the priority rather than the project-at-hand. You will tend to be more influenced by the opinions of others and more sensitive to the emotions of those around you.

So to understand yourself better, ask yourself and discuss with your family these two questions:

  1. Am I more outgoing or am I more reserved? If you are more outgoing (or more active), you will be focused on talking things out more than thinking things through. Outgoing people tend to be more fast-paced, involved with others, energetic, optimistic, positive, and enthusiastic. Some outgoing people have more intensity with these characteristics than others, and as a matter of fact, some outgoing people are just barely outgoing while others are the only ones in the room when they are in a crowd. The intensity level varies with reserved (or more passive) people as well. Reserved people are slower-paced, cautious, concerned, patient, steady, and discerning.
  2. Am I more task-oriented or people-oriented? If you are more task-oriented, your focus will be more on getting things done than the people working with you and how they feel. You will be more interested in how the task will be accomplished, the systems needed to complete the project, the plans and programs need to perform the task, and that any processes involved are efficient and will actually work. If you are people oriented, you will pay more attention to the relationships with those involved, and care more about their emotions, feeling, and the potential friendships. Relationships will matter to you, sometimes more than the task at hand.

Once you answer these two questions for yourself and for your other family members, Make a note of who is outgoing and task oriented, who is outgoing and people oriented, who is reserved and people oriented, and who is reserved and task oriented. Then tomorrow, I’ll have #2 of the Quarantined Family Series.

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Pastor Ted Haggard, DD, CHBC, is a Bible teacher with an emphasis on New Testament solutions to the human condition. His Bible teaching is informed by biblical scholarship, Choice Theory (Glasser), Attachment Theory (Johnson), and Behavioral Studies using DISC (Rohm).

This and other blogs by Pastor Ted Haggard are available at http://www.tedhaggardblog.com as a ministry of St. James Church. If you would like to strengthen the ministry of St. James Church and Pastor Ted Haggard by giving, please use the “give” tab at http://www.saintjameschurch.com.

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Q and A

COVID-19: Where is God?

This morning I received a tweet from Christopher Henrikse@FirstChesthole asking me:

Where is your god? Look around at what is happening right now. If he was who you say he is he would end this right now. Why is he letting you all die? Why is he keeping you out of work? Why is he making your kids miss school and be afraid of what is going on?

Here is my answer:

God is the Creator of the whole universe, and he is everywhere. He is sovereign, and he has chosen to limit the expression of his sovereignty here on Earth so we human beings would have a variety of choices to make.

In Heaven, which is a kingdom under his sovereign rule, there is no suffering, no death, no betrayal, no disappointment, hurt, or so many of the things that cause pain and suffering among us. In his Kingdom, which we refer to as the Kingdom of Heaven or the Kingdom of God, his goodness and kindness are absolute. But not here on Earth. Here, we only experience slices of God’s Kingdom (which are meant to reveal God to us), and when we do, it’s always good. Let me explain.

On Earth we are surrounded with evidence of God. Yet here on Earth, God has also granted us other influences which include human volition, natural law, the ability to create both good and bad ideas that influence our lives and behaviors, and negative spiritual influences which, according to the Scriptures, are the Devil and his demons.

In Heaven, only God’s perfect will exists. But here on the Earth, we also have these other influences. How we choose to respond to them is what shapes our world and our individual lives. As a result, many of the things that happen here on the Earth do not reflect God’s perfect will, but instead are influenced by other factors.

This is why Jesus taught us to pray:

Let thy Kingdom come, let thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven.

There are a few situations here on the Earth where God has set in motion certain events that cannot be adjusted by us. An example would be the way God used Pharaoh with the nation of Israel in the Old Testament. When we teach these Scriptures, we emphasize God’s sovereignty which may confuse people like Christopher, who asked the questions above, because they think God personally controls and causes everything that happens on the Earth. That’s not so.

Our choices are important, which explains the Bible’s thickness and why Jesus came to rescue us and sent the Holy Spirit to live within us to teach us and to guide us.  The stories, principles, commands, and ideas in the Scriptures help inform our ideas and adjust our decisions, while revealing our role in creation. That is why billions of people believe the Bible is God’s Word. The Bible reveals so much to us, and instructs us to become the people God created us to be, which will ultimately reflect him in all his wisdom and goodness. That’s why Christians give, serve, heal, love, and restore.

Here on the Earth, as I mentioned, we have natural law—which has led to the development of Covid-19. It’s not spiritual; it’s a product of natural law. The purpose of Science is to learn how God created our world and how to work with it so we’ll be better off. God has given us our intellects to enable us to do this. Thus, we appreciate medical science and the other schools of thought that use natural law to keep us safer when traveling, give us better diets, and help us live quality lives.

 Once in a while God will, however, override natural law, and when he does, we call it a miracle. When miracles happen they are always for our good and to serve his purposes. In other words, he let’s us experience a slice of heaven.

So let me specifically answer your questions:

Question: Where is your god?

Answer: All around us inspiring us with good ideas in order to help the human race, while using the intellects he has given to us.

Question: Look around at what is happening right now. If he was who you say he is he would end this right now. Why is he letting you all die?

Answer: This portion of your question reveals that you don’t know what I teach about this. I don’t believe Earth is Heaven, and I don’t believe that everything happening here on Earth is God’s will. God says that all things work together for the good for those who love him and are called according to his purposes. So we know that for those who love God and are called according to his purposes, the hand of God is involved and good will come out of it. Not necessarily so for those who don’t love God or who have rejected his calling. Those who have made those poor decisions might, in fact, be on their own.

But for our general population, God might just let these events unfold according to natural law, knowing it gives all of us an opportunity to learn more about his creation, how to be kind to one another, how to give to one another, and how to take care of one another. More importantly these events are forcing us to work together using tools God has given us to solve this problem. God is in the mind of the scientists giving them ideas. God is in the hand of the nurse giving comfort, and God has provided eternal life for all who believe who die (whether because of this virus or for any other reason). God is with us. He’s in the farmers, truck drivers, and the grocery store workers providing food. He works through the utility company providing water, and the mechanic making sure we can travel. God is with us.

 Question: Why is he keeping you out of work?

Answer: That answer is different for different people. As for me, I am not at the office so I can be with my family, rest, and write the answers to your questions.

Question: Why is he making your kids miss school and be afraid of what is going on?

Answer: They won’t be afraid if their parents use this opportunity to help them understand the realities of life on Earth. Many will seek the Lord and find him during this time, like you are doing. Others will have their parents teach them at home, which will create a wonderful life-long memory. And my guess is that many are cooking, playing, and reading together for the first time in a long time. Whether being home is good or bad is up to them. But in the midst of this trial, God is giving all of us a wonderful opportunity.

One final note: Prayer stimulates the Holy Spirit’s activity, and the Holy Spirit gives people good ideas that make our lives better. I would encourage all of you who believe and are reading this blog to pray for those in authority over us. It benefits all of us to have the Holy Spirit working more powerfully as we pray for his Kingdom to come, his will to be done, here on Earth as it is in Heaven.

I hope this answers your questions. Thank you for writing.

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Pastor Ted Haggard, DD, CHBC, is a Bible teacher with an emphasis on New Testament solutions to the human condition. His Bible teaching is informed by biblical scholarship, Choice Theory (Glasser), Attachment Theory (Johnson), and Behavioral Studies using DISC (Rohm).

This and other blogs by Pastor Ted Haggard are available at http://www.tedhaggardblog.com as a ministry of St. James Church. If you would like to strengthen the ministry of St. James Church and Pastor Ted Haggard by giving, please use the “give” tab at http://www.saintjameschurch.com.

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Responsible Citizens

Cleansing Hands and Hearts

Print out this prayer and post it above the restroom sink on the mirror with a note saying  that if anyone washes their hands with soap and water for the amount of time it takes to recite this prayer, it will cleans their hands just as if they had used a chemical sanitizer, refresh their hearts, and remind them of the truly important issues in life.

May the Lord Bless you and Keep You!

Pastor Ted

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Pastor Ted Haggard, DD, CHBC, is a Bible teacher with an emphasis on New Testament solutions to the human condition. His Bible teaching is informed by biblical scholarship, Choice Theory (Glasser), Attachment Theory (Johnson), and Behavioral Studies using DISC (Rohm).

This and other blogs by Pastor Ted Haggard are available at http://www.tedhaggardblog.com as a ministry of St. James Church. If you would like to strengthen the ministry of St. James Church and Pastor Ted Haggard by giving, please use the “give” tab at http://www.saintjameschurch.com.