One Thousand Years of Peace

I look at the headlines and violence abounds. Not only violence, but bloodshed in accidents, and natural disasters, intrigues, and power struggles. This is our lot until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. When that will be, not even Jesus knew while He was with His disciples. We know several facts about when the second coming of Christ is, when He comes in wrath and cleaves bone from marrow with just His breath. It is precisely 3.5 years from the breaking of the written agreement between the Antichrist and the Jews. It comes on the day of the abomination of desecration. It comes 45 days before the beginning of the Millennium of Peace.  I believe Jesus is eagerly anticipating when He can come retrieve His Bride... but, for now, we live in a world of sin because the prince of this world is Satan.

What about after Satan is bound? What happens during that one thousand years? I do believe the Bible is literal in prophecies, and is actually clear when the Holy Spirit is the guide to understanding.

I have run across a few things in Isaiah to chew on... 

We know that the outer courtyard of the Temple was the only place Gentiles could go. The inner courtyard all the way into the Holy of Holies was reserved for the Jews. This is one reason it was so horrific to the Jews at what Antiochus Epiphanes did and later in 70 AD what Titus of Rome did...
So, in Isaiah 56:6-7 "6 And foreigners who bind themselves to the LORD to serve him, to love the name of the LORD, and to worship him, all who keep the Sabbath without desecrating it and who hold fast to my covenant-- 7 these I will bring to my holy mountain and give them joy in my house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be accepted on my altar; for my house will be called a house of prayer for all nations." 

Isaiah is speaking about a time in the future when the Gentiles are welcomed into the Temple to worship Jehovah and to offer burnt offerings and sacrifices upon His altar. This, of course, means another Temple will be built. We get a beautiful picture of that Temple in Ezekiel chapters 40-48, as well as some clues to the millennial sacrifices.

In Isaiah 66:18-24 we get another clue. Jehovah will gather all nations and tongues (Not just Israel) these are Gentiles that haven't "seen" the Glory of Jehovah... and it looks like God is going to use the Gentiles as "carriers" to bring the Jews to Jerusalem. Verse 20 this is done as an "offering" to the Lord, just "as the children of Israel bring an offering in a clean vessel into the house of the LORD." 

Since Jesus is our Sacrifice, and His blood covers our sins, and all our sins are paid for, then why sacrifices? What purpose do they serve? Can we even make sense of them if, perhaps, the sacrifices God requires are sacrifices of praise and prayer in His house of prayer? What is God talking about in Ezekiel? Isaiah?

Could this be speaking about a time when Jews and Christians will be like-minded and worship and pray together? -- maybe like the Jews who come to accept Christ? Hopefully those Christians will not denounce Christ as the Messiah and adopt Judaism, but is that really what is happening when sacrifices are made? 

I would welcome any insight you guys have. Hopefully over the next few days we can make some kind of sense from this muddle.

Obama's first 9 months. Joe Biden right beside him

Remember this? Hiden'Biden was standing beside Obama when these things happened!

If you even half way watch the news, you will recognize every one of these below which came to me via email from a friend in Texas. What is not on the list are these:

Appointed Czars that are advisors who have direct access to him with no point/counterpoint who, for the most part, are militant liberals with diverse socialist and facist agendas in their backgrounds.

Antagonized the Press Pool (because of the White House ban of Fox News) to the point that the entire pool refused to attend a WH press conference. I never thought I'd see that.

I am wondering if your Congressmen know just how you feel about these things? Anyone who believes that just one voice can never make a difference, should remember just a few...

Martin Luther
Mother Theresa
Buddy Holly

Thank goodness, One voice rises above them all. Jesus. It doesn't matter how good or bad a message is, one voice can make a huge difference because there is one thing that lies within every one of these voices (and I'm sure you can think of many more): Passion. When you believe something passionately, then your voice gains a vibrance and resonance all its own and can shake the world. One voice added to many and you've got a movement much like a fully loaded freight train which once it is traveling 60 mph, it is extremely hard to stop.

Obama 's First Nine Months' Accomplishments:

1. Offended the Queen of England
2. Bowed to the King of Saudi Arabia
3. Praised the Marxist Daniel Ortega.
4. Kissed Socialist Hugo Chavez on the cheek.
5. Endorsed the Socialist Evo Morales of Bolivia 
6. Sided with Hugo Chavez and Communist Fidel Castro against Honduras' Constitution, Congress and Supreme Court.
7. Announced we would meet with Iranians with no pre-conditions while they're
building their nuclear weapons.
8. Gave away billions to AIG also without pre-conditions.
9. Expanded the bailouts.
10. Insulted everyone who has ever loved a Special Olympian.

11. Doubled our national debt.

12. Announced the termination of our new missile defense system the day after North Korea launched an ICBM.

13. Released information on U.S. Intelligence gathering despite urgings of his own CIA director and the prior four CIA directors.

14. Accepted without comment that five of his cabinet members cheated on their taxes and two other nominees withdrew after they couldn't take the heat.

15. Appointed a Home land Security Chief who identified military veterans and abortion opponents as "dangers to the nation."

16. Ordered that the word "terrorism" no longer be used and instead refers to such acts as "man made disasters."

17. Circled the globe to publicly apologize for America 's world leadership.

18. Told the Mexican president that the violence in their country was because of us.

19. Politicized the census by moving it into the White House from the Department of Commerce.

20. Appointed as Attorney General the man who orchestrated the forced removal and expulsion to Cuba of a 9-year-old whose mother died trying to bring him to freedom in the United States .

21. Salutes as heroes three Navy SEALS who took down three terrorists who threatened one American life and the next day announces members of the Bush administration may stand trial for "torturing" three 9/11 terrorists by pouring water up their noses.

22. Authorized low altitude photo shoot of Air Force One over New York City that frightened thousands of New Yorkers.

23. Sent his National Defense Advisor to Europe to assure them that the US will no longer treat Israel in a special manner and they might be on their own with the Muslims.

24. Praised Jimmy Carter's trip to Gaza where he sided with terrorist Hamas against Israel

25. Nationalized General Motors and Chrysler while turning shareholder control over to the unions and freezing out retired investors who owned their bonds. Committed unlimited taxpayer billions in the process.

26. Backed a huge energy tax in the House that will make American industry even less competitive while costing homeowners thousands per year.

27. Announced nationalized health care "reform" that will strip seniors of some Medicare benefits, cut pay of physicians, increase taxes by billions, and eventually put many if not most on rationed care with government bureaucrats deciding who gets care and who doesn't.

28. Floated the idea of military veterans being responsible for their own health care to save money for the country they sacrificed for and served.

29.Announced that the war in Afghanistan was "the war of necessity," then met with the general Obama appointed to be in charge of that theater only once in the first 70 days and dithered and delayed in following the general's recommendation for increased troops while American soldiers and civilians were dying there (yet had the time to flit around the globe making apologies for the US, going to plays and playing golf, and getting involved in very minor matters..Bloomberg: Daschle says, "Health care reform will not be pain free. Seniors should be more accepting of the conditions that come with age instead of treating them," while former Colorado Governor Dick Lamm says seniors have "a duty to die."

Then there is Clinton and an Obama advisor who said. "We're going to have to, if you're very old, we're not going to give you all that technology and all those drugs for the last couple of years of your life to keep you maybe going for another couple of months. It's too we're going to let you die."

If this does not sufficiently raise your ire, just remember that the President, Senators and Congressmen have their own special gold plated health care plan which is guaranteed the remainder of their lives and they will not subject to any new law passed by them. Please use the power of the Internet to get this message out. Talk it up at the grassroots level. We have elections coming up in one year and one month where we can reverse the dangerous direction of the Obama administration and its allies..

Crowns of the Believers

Book Cover jpeg

Study about the 
Crown of Protection... 
The Crown of Separation ... 
The Crown of Insolence ... 
The Crown of Lovingkindness and Crown of Tenderness ... 
and the other crowns of the believers.

It's finally here! It's available on Amazon, and other eStore book stores.

...and for Kindle, too.

Grab your copy

I did a lot more digging using the Hebrew and Greek lexicons. Then, I taught this study to my Thursday morning Bible study class. Wow! When I updated it with more in depth research you won't believe what I found. There are more than 7 crowns that we receive. Isn't that amazing? There's several crowns of the same type, but of different kinds. There is also a crown of insolence... and yes, Christians can wear this crown.

This has been such a popular post, I decided to use my updated notes and write a book.

It isn't long, and it isn't expensive.
Author Gina Burgess
I ask you to purchase the book, and let me know what you think! Give me your insights, discuss what you discover as you study the crowns. I hope to keep updating the book as time goes by so that many believers will know what, how, and why we have these rewards.


Paul was very fond of using The Race as an analogy for the Christian Lifestyle. To the Corinthians, he espoused this theme pointing to the victor in the race receives a crown of corruption. That was a wreath of leaves of laurel which soon withers. In fact the runner coveted the victory much more than the crown. Paul immediately points out that believers’ crowns are incorruptible, lasting forever, being the proof of victory in Christian living.

I have heard studies on “the five crowns” we receive, but there actually are more than five crowns. Believers have already received two of these crowns, which are worn daily.

Gina Burgess discusses in depth the facets and purposes of each crown. She gives you the tools to carry on your own study of other biblical subjects and issues that may intrigue you. Please invest in your understanding and wisdom concerning God's precious word.

Crown of Separation – find out what this crown means, had how to find it in Scripture. 

Crown of Protection - is found in Psalm 5:12 translated surround. The Bible tells us there are several different kinds of this crown type. Find out which ones they are, and how we receive this crown.

Crown of Insolence is first mentioned in  Isaiah 28:1. The derogatory term, Crown of Insolence, stems from how the Samaritans took great pride in the work of their own hands. Find out how Christians today acquire this type of crown. 

Crown of Incorruptibility – Of course Paul describes this crown. Find out how this crown applies to believers today.

Crown of Rejoicing -- Who actually will receive this crown? How does it apply to Christians, and are believers the only ones who wear it?

Crown of Righteousness -- Another crown that Paul describes. We think we know what this one means, but it goes a lot deeper than just being justified by the blood o Christ.

Crown of Life -- Both James and Christ speak of this crown. When do believers start wearing this one?

Crown of Glory -- Peter describes this crown. Does everyone receive this crown? Does anything about our gifts indicate who will receive this one?

Here is the exhortation: We should always be working, using our gifts toward the edification of the body. Setting on a pew hatching nothing restricts the work God has planned for His children to do on earth. Utilizing our gifts ensures we bring God glory and honor.

The Crowns of the Believers gives you precious insight into the real purpose of the crowns. It heightens your insight and opens the doors to in depth study of God's word. I urge you to invest in your copy of this book today. It is well worth the money and your time invested to study this beautiful facet of God's enduring grace and His glory.

Major Steve Long--honoring a 9/11 fallen hero

 Major Steve Long
A Memorial Day Tribute

Also a tribute to the victims of 9/11. On September 11, 2006, 2,996 volunteer bloggers joined together for a tribute to the victims of 9/11. Each person paid tribute to a single victim. I don't know how many blogs that were alive in 2006 which have since ceased to exist or have morphed into something else. As for me and my blog, we are here today to honor this fallen hero, Major Steve V. Long.

We honor the victims by remembering their lives, and not by remembering their murderers.

This post you will see every year to pay tribute and honor to Army Major Steve V. Long. I pray that others will come back and post comments each year so we can learn more about this dedicated Army officer, husband and father.

On September 11th, he was at his post at the Pentagon, doing his job, and he gave his life for his country. He was 39 years old; and he was from Georgia. Maj. Long was serving as Secretary of the General Staff, Office of the Commanding General, U.S. Total Army Command. He was married with two children. I have continued my search over the years about his life and work. As time goes by, I find out a little more as his family, friends, and soldiers he worked with leave comments.

The Pentagon lists his medals and awards and military training:
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
  (with Arrowhead and Oak Leaf Cluster)
Armed Forces Service Medal
Army Achievement Medal
Army Good Conduct Medal
Army Commendation Medal
  (with "V" Device and Two Oak Leaf Clusters)
Army Non-Commissioned Officers Development Medal
  (w/ Numeral "2")
Army Service Ribbon
Army Superior Unit Award
Combat Infantry Badge
Legion of Merit
Meritorious Service Award
National Defense Service Medal
Overseas Service Ribbon
Parachutist Badge
  (with Bronze Star)
Purple Heart
  (with Oak Leaf Cluster)
Ranger Tab
Southwest Asia Service Medal
  (with Bronze Star)
Valorous Unit Award
 Major Long’s military training includes Infantry One Station Unit Training, the Primary Leadership Development Course, the Basic Noncommissioned Officer Course, Jungle Warfare School, the United States Army Ranger Course, the United States Air Force Survival Training Course, the Quartermaster Officer Basic Course, Combined Logistics Officer Advanced Course, Combined Arms and Services Staff School, and the Petroleum Officer Course.
What kind of father he was, what kind of husband has slowly come to life with each post. I found the tears of a nephew... the tears of a sister, Nancy.

His mother, Sue Weaver, said he loved planting and gardening.

I did find this tribute:
I had the honor and pleasure of serving together with Steve back in 1997. Steve was a fellow officer in the 601st Aviation Support Battalion and he served as the headquarters and Headquarters Company Commander during a rotation to Bosnia. He epitomized the word dedication and duty. He was a loved husband and father to his family and he will be forever missed. My heart and prayers go out to him, his family, and to all others affected by this tragedy. I am proud to continue my service to my country. Special thanks go to all the men and women of the armed forces, past and present, for their contribution and daily sacrifices as well to their families who know pain and uncertainty on a daily basis. Sincerely, Ron Pacheco
And I found this tribute...

I first met Steve Long when he was a Captain, and I was a Second Lieutenant in my officer basic course at Fort Lee, Virginia. He gave an introductory brief on how we newly commissioned officers could "manage" our own military careers. I got in touch with him a year later, while I was stationed in Korea, on my next assignment back in the U.S.A. As a young 23-year-old officer, trying to balance the Army with a fiance who was also in the Army, I kept changing my mind. Over the course of a year and half, I asked Steve to amend my assignment THREE TIMES and he did! Branch managers like Steve get no credit for the unglamorous HR work they do, but for me it was a sterling introduction of what "taking care of Soldiers" meant. It was an example by DOING, not just TALKING about it. Years later, when I read his name in the Pentagon losses, I was so saddened to hear that the Army had lost such a great officer. I say a prayer for him on every September 11th.Melissa
*** Posted by Melissa on 2009-09-11 ***
In the comments section of this post are other tributes...

At the link on the title of this post, you can view the Arlington Cemetery resting place of Maj. Long, and see the tribute to him listed there. I have unashamedly copied part of that tribute below...

Floating down to the Caribbean island of Grenada, Specialist Steve Long pleaded with the enemy soldiers far below who were firing alarming numbers of bullets toward him and the other Army Rangers parachuting in during the 1983 U.S.-led invasion.
"I'm really a nice guy," Long kept muttering, according to his wife, Tina. "You wouldn't be shooting at me if you knew what a nice guy I am."
Long landed unharmed, but in a follow-up raid on a Cuban military camp, several Black Hawk helicopters carrying Long and other Rangers came under fire and crashed. "His roommate and best friend was killed," said Tina Long. "It hurt him greatly."
Long was injured in the crash but continued fighting and was awarded the Army Commendation Medal for Valor and the Purple Heart.
With the encouragement of his wife and commanders, he went to college and received a commission as an officer, and he later served with the 82nd Airborne Division during the Persian Gulf War. As a personnel officer, a job he took after injuries no longer allowed him to serve in combat, Long agonized over where to assign soldiers, knowing his decisions could harm careers or break up families. "Many a night he was losing sleep on where he was sending people," Tina Long said.
But he never regretted his service. "It was just his love of his country," she said. "I know it sounds simple, but that's the way he was."

I am so very proud to be able to honor one of our country's protectors. This man stood in the gap and took a hit from the bad guys. As for me, there are not enough words to honor him and the job he was doing. My grandchildren (when I have them) will be able to grow strong and sturdy without fear because of Maj. Long and others like him. My children will be able to sleep at night. And perhaps, one day I might get to shake his hand in heaven. Thank you, Steve, and I thank all the men and women who serve our great country so we can have the gift of freedom. Freedom is costly, but it is worthy.

Links for the whole Motivational Gifts Bible Study

One of the most popular post series on my blog is the Motivational Gifts. Here are the links to them.

7 Highly Effective Motivational Spiritual Gifts -

Ah Ha! moment -- Atonement

Since both Mom and I were down with incredible cases of sinusitis on Sunday, we did not get to worship with our church family, we curled up with our Kleenex and PJs and watched David Jeremiah, James Merritt, and Charles Stanley.

James Merritt pointed out something that I have always known, but had never put in exactly these words.

The story of Barabbas was put in the Bible to explain in a physical way the Spiritual truth of propitiation.

Barabbas was a robber, a murderer, a liar, a cheat, and profaner of God Himself. He broke every commandment and was sentenced to pay for his crimes. It was a just sentence from the Hebrew perspective of the Ten Commands. The sentence of death was just reward for breaking them as we all know. Here's a look at the commands and the consequences for breaking it.

1 Polytheism - Ex 20:3 - Death Ex 22:20 & Deut 6:13-15 & Acts 14:15
2 Graven images - Ex 20:4 - Death Deut. 27:15 & 1 John 5:21
3 Swearing (God's name in vain) - Ex 20:7 - Death Lev 24:15-16 & James 5:12
4 Not keeping Sabbath - Ex 20:8 - Death Num 15:32-36 & Col 2:16-20 nullifies death penalty for Sabbath
5 Honoring parents - Ex 20:12 - Death Ex 21:15-17 & Eph 6:1
6 Murder - Ex 20:13 - Death Ex 21:12 & 1 John 3:15
7 Adultery - Ex 20:14 - Death Lev 20:10 & 1 Cor 6:9-10
8 Theft - Ex 20:15 - Death Ex 21:16 & Eph 4:28
9 False Witness - Ex 20:16 - Death Deut 18:16-21 & Col 3:9-10
10 Coveting Ex 20:17 - Eph 5:3 (acting upon the thing coveted leads to all the other sins)

God did not take lightly the breaking of His commands, although He gave mercy in the lack of knowledge as Paul indicates in Romans 7:7. Jesus gave mercy by forgiving sins (such as the woman caught in adultery). However, Barabbas was Jewish and had knowledge of the Law, but he had rejected it and had wallowed in his own pleasure and pursuit of pleasure. He was justly sentenced to death.

The crowd was incited to scream for the release of Barabbas and the crucifixion of Jesus. This is a testimony of what man meant for evil, God turns to great good. Releasing of Barabbas was the physical illustration of the Spiritual Truth that only Jesus could make the atonement required by the Law.

Jesus was perfect in every way. The Passover lamb had to be perfect in every way to satisfy God for the Passover sacrifice. Only Jesus satisfied God's requirement through the Law. Isaiah 53:11  He shall see the labor of His soul, and be satisfied. By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, For He shall bear their iniquities.

Barabbas' death would not have served the greater purpose. It would have been according to the Law--justifiable consequence of sin--yet, God's greater purpose was to show beyond any reasonable doubt that our own physical death is not enough to atone for our own sin, much less any other person's sin. The reason is that we are not perfect as the Passover Lamb. Because we are filthy with our own sin we fall horribly short of the glory of God, and therefore we cannot atone for it with a victory over death and sin. Only Jesus could do that.

An astounding ah HA! moment.

Question: What other ah HA! revelations have you discovered this Easter?

Trees sing for joy!

Psa 96:9  Oh, worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness! Tremble before Him, all the earth. 
Psa 96:10  Say among the nations, "The LORD reigns; The world also is firmly established, It shall not be moved; He shall judge the peoples righteously." 
Psa 96:11  Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; Let the sea roar, and all its fullness; 
Psa 96:12  Let the field be joyful, and all that is in it. Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy 
Psa 96:13  For He is coming, for He is coming to judge the earth. He shall judge the world with righteousness, And the peoples with His truth. 

Probably one of the hardest things to do is to forgive yourself. Someone once pointed out to me that it was not a Biblical principle. I hunted and searched for hours trying to find something in the Bible about forgiving oneself. The closest I came was David’s Psalm 51 when he asked God to create in him a clean heart and to renew a right spirit within him. When you compare his Psalm 32 in verse 3 When I kept silence, then my bones became old, through my howling all day. We see the consequences of unconfessed sin. But that is different from forgiving one’s self for past transgressions which we have confessed and repented. Why do we groan in shame for them long after the deed? It is because somehow our standard of forgiveness is steeper and higher than God Almighty's forgiveness.

Satan capitalizes on that tendency and constantly bombards us with taunts of past wrongs hoping that our guilty feelings will draw us away from God, out from under His protective wings. That is something that Satan knows we as Christians are prone to do. We think our sin is too huge to be forgiven because we think from our own level of forgiveness. How could we forgive someone doing that to us? If we can’t forgive, then how can God forgive? That is another of Satan’s lies that we buy into.

That still didn’t quite fit the requirement for a Biblical basis of forgiving yourself. So I kept looking and found Isaiah 54:4 Do not fear, for you shall not be shamed, nor shall you be abashed, for you shall not be wounded, for you shall forget the shame of your youth, and you shall not remember the reproach of your widowhood any more.

Very interesting word, widowhood. The Hebrew word is the feminine form of H488 which is אלמן
'almân al-mawn' Prolonged from H481 in the sense of bereavementdiscarded (as a divorced person): - forsaken. (emphasis is mine) Isaiah is prophesying a time when Israel will be gathered to the LORD’s breast as a much beloved wife. In verses four through five, he is talking about the shame and guilt we feel when we are confronted with our sin and are convicted of it within our heart. Here are most beautiful words to any Christian who has had those moments of knee-bending, face-in-the-carpet shame: You will no longer remember your disgrace.

Why did God say that? Because we have a conscience and we are prone to dwell on the negative. That saying one bad apple spoils the whole barrel is true. Negativism breeds and multiplies faster and further than anything imaginable. Just look at the murmuring and rumbling of the Israelites in the wilderness. When you get that old Dragon, the Accuser firing guilt tipped darts at the chinks in our armor, you have a problem of unforgiveness of the self kind.

To forgive our self, we must reverse that process and remember that God is greater than our sin. Christ’s sacrifice was once and for all… that means every possible, conceivable sin was accounted for and covered by Jesus’ blood. That, my beloved siblings, is the greatest story of grace man ever attempted to understand.

Since our Kinsman Redeemer has already bought the sin, why do we insist on hanging on to it?

Unbelief and an overblown ego.

It isn’t hard to do, either. Even Moses, who was the conveyor of such miracles of God as the parting of the Red Sea, the providing of water for more than two million thirsty people, plus all the livestock (which is an astronomical amount of water every day), and forty year old shoes and garments never wearing out plus many other things, had a moment of unbelief which cost him the promised land. Numbers 20:10-12. He struck the rock twice instead of speaking to it. God said it was his unbelief that caused it.

We Christians do not believe that God can, in fact already has forgiven that horrendous sin that we keep hidden in our hearts. Holding on to the sin is tantamount to making Jesus go to the cross all over again. That is what unbelief does. Since we know He only went once, and that was enough, then we should know that those guilty feelings which Satan aims at us as fiery darts, are literally harmless breaths of hot wind. They have no teeth so to speak, it is merely baying at the moon.

What happens to our past moral and spiritual failures when we repent of our sins and claim God’s forgiveness? Have you ever had an itch right in the middle of your back? Ever try to scratch it with your hand? That is where God casts our sins when we confess and repent, never to be reached, touched or thought of again. Glory!

The LORD forgives the past. His great compassion is far beyond understanding. If we were to be asked to give our first and only beloved son to pay for the lives of the most wicked of people who had nothing worthy to give back, our hearts would be granite and our faces be flint. Yet, God has mercy for us because while we were yet sinners, Christ willingly died for us. Here’s the Biblical proof of it:

Hebrews 8:12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities I will remember no more."
Hebrews 10:17 also He adds, "their sins and their iniquities I will remember no more."

Jeremiah 31:34 And they shall no more teach each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, Know Jehovah; for they shall all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says Jehovah. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sins no more.

Isaiah 38:17 Behold, for peace was bitter to me, most bitter; but You loved my soul from the pit of destruction; You have cast all my sins behind Your back.

For the mountains shall depart, and the hills tremble; My loving kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall the covenant of My peace be shaken, says Jehovah who loves you. Isaiah 54:10