Saturday, October 10, 2009

Fall On The Rock!

Many times I have used the expression, “fall on the Rock!” It’s become something of a mantra for me when talking to other Christians. What I am doing is warning believers to embrace the cross and take initiative in humbling themselves. Lots of folks just look at me, kind of understanding but not really comprehending what I am saying to them.

Let’s make it clear:

And He looked at them and said, What then is this which is written, "The Stone which the builders rejected, the same has become the Head of the corner? Whoever shall fall on that Stone shall be broken, but on whomever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder." Luke 20:17,18

In context, the Lord was telling the story about the owner of a filed that rented out his field to vinedressers. When the Lord of the vineyard sent his servants for fruit, the vinedressers beat and sent them away. Ultimately the Lord sent His son to them and they killed Him. The climax of the story is the owner of the vineyard coming back to take possession of his own vineyard and killing the workers that He hired! The point of this story is simple: be a good steward, the King is coming BACK.

Then the Lord tells them something amazing, He says:

“Whoever shall fall on that Stone shall be broken, but on whomever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder." Luke 20:18

He tells them that He is the stone. More than that, He is making a statement that ultimately we will ALL be broken, regardless. It’s like we have no choice in the matter. God says that we can be broken big or broken small, but we WILL be broken! Of course, I would rather be broken in pieces than ground to powder and I don’t know anyone who is in their right mind that wants to be ground into powder. Big pieces are better.

So how do we fall on the rock?


There are two stories in the Bible of people that came to Jesus that illustrate this story very well. Both of them we are very familiar with, but did we understand the message? The first is the story of the rich young ruler:

“And behold, one came and said to Him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life? And He said to him, Why do you call Me good? There is none good but one, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments. He said to Him, Which? Jesus said, You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not bear false witness, honor your father and mother, and, you shall love your neighbor as yourself. The young man said to Him, I have kept all these things from my youth up; what do I lack yet?” Matthew 19:16-20

This young man came to Jesus seeking a good thing, eternal life. When Jesus gave him the answer, “keep the commandments” his response revealed his heart. Instead of humbly accepting the Word, he still sought to be justified and replied: “which commandment?” Jesus gave him a laundry list including don’t murder, don’t steal and don’t commit adultery. The young man tells Jesus that he has in fact kept ALL these commandments, yet still profoundly feels lack and Jesus’ response is extreme:

“Jesus said to him, If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in Heaven. And come, follow Me. But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful; for he had great possessions.” Matthew 19: 21,22

Jesus tells him, “Ok, if you want to be perfect (complete) go and sell EVERYTHING you have and give it to the poor, then come and follow me.” Jesus upped the ante and basically told the guy, “Give it all away”. The man went away sad, because he was rich and had many possessions. This story is a dramatic example of the cost of the cross and for years has inspired many folks to give everything they have away to pursue perfection. Now, that’s noble, but I think we are missing the point.

Let’s look at another rich man that came to Jesus, Zaccheus:

“And going in, He passed through Jericho. And behold, there was a man named Zaccheus, who was a chief tax-collector. And he was rich. And he sought to see Jesus, to see who He was. And he could not because of the press, because he was little in stature. And he ran in front and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see Him. For He was to pass through that way. And when Jesus came to the place, He looked up and saw him. And He said to him, Zaccheus! Hurry and come down, for today I must stay at your house. And hurrying he came down, and received Him joyfully.” Luke 19:1-6

We find the same basic story, a man of resource came to Jesus, but this story ends much differently than the last one. We know that Zaccheus had wealth because he was a tax collector and tax collectors became very wealthy extorting money from Jews as they gathered tax revenue for Rome. We also know that he was dishonest:

“And seeing, they all murmured, saying, He has gone in to stay with a sinful man.” Luke 19:7

The people were offended with Jesus because He was staying with a sinful man. Zaccheus was a known liar and thief. Yet this story ended so differently than the previous one with the “righteous” young ruler. In hearing the murmuring of the people that he was a wicked man, Zaccheus response was immediate:

“And Zaccheus stood and said to the Lord, Behold, Lord, I give half of my goods to the poor. And in anything I accused anyone falsely, I restore it fourfold.” Luke 19:8

Zaccheus stood and willingly gave HALF of his possessions to the poor and returned four-fold what he had stolen and defrauded. Jesus’ response was awesome:

“And Jesus said to him, This day salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham.” Luke 19:9

Jesus proclaimed over Zaccheus that salvation had come to him! How is that? The rich man was REQUIRED to give his ENTIRE house to experience the blessings of salvation and Zaccheus got off with only giving HALF! How does that work?

“And whoever shall exalt himself shall be abased, and he who shall humble himself shall be exalted.” Matthew 23:12

Simple. It’s a heart issue. God looks at the heart. The rich young ruler thought he was hot stuff, so the Lord raised the bar to a level that he couldn’t reach. Instead of humbling Himself, the Lord had to do it for him! The rock (Jesus) fell on the rich young ruler and he was reduced to powder. Trust me, we don’t want God humbling us, he does a much better job than we ever could. Zaccheus on the other hand humbled HIMSELF. He fell on the rock. His sacrifice and repentance was acceptable in the Lord’s sight because it was willingly offered.

The moral of this story?


Thursday, October 08, 2009

Miracles by Madden

For you guys that don’t know Madden, Madden is a young lady that went to our church for a couple of months before leaving for college. Before going to college, we hung out on the streets and “did the stuff”. She also went with us on the team to Indiana and we saw all sorts of cool stuff. Well, Madden has continued to take the reality of the Kingdom with her everywhere she goes, “As She Goes”. Here is a note that she posted on Facebook about her Adventures in God:

*edited for length.

Do You Believe In Miracles? I do.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Jesus is King.

If you are "religious" you won’t like what this is about, and I am okay with that. Every Tuesday & Thursday for the past few months I’ve been with people in downtown Atlanta. The people I enjoy being with do drugs, they drink, and some of them are even homeless. I do not hold that against them, in actuality it makes me love and care for them even more. A group of people from NorthGate ( go all over Atlanta and share about Jesus. Simply share what Jesus has TOLD us to do in Matthew 10:8.

"Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give."

To my “religious friends:” I have “stepped out of the box.” This box was put around me by the church. The chains of religion. Rules. Regulations. Fake Sunday smile. The typical “STANDARDS” of a church. Jesus didn’t have standards for the people who really wanted His heart. He never once said, “Get on your best clothes, shining shoes, newly cut hair, and come sing a hymn to me.”

I made this note to share with you the awesome things that Jesus is doing through me & my friends on a daily basis. He says ask and we will receive, so I am asking for supernatural experiences everywhere I go.


August 4, 2009

I prayed for a lady that has been unable to walk, [in a wheelchair] for 14 years, she walked.

August 6, 2009

- A few friends and I prayed for a lady with hip pain. It was an 10 on a scale of 1-10, and went to a zero. She could walk again without any pain.

- A friend and I prayed for a guy's headache. It left instantly.

- A friend and I prayed for a guy's knee, it was a 6 on a scale of 1-10, pain left and went to "less than a 1."

August 13, 2009

- I prayed for a lady's headache, gone instantly.

- A few friends and I prayed for people in ATL tonight. 3 of them claimed Jesus as their King. New brother and sisters, that's what's up!!

- I attempted praying for a limping lady at Waffle House, and she dominated me(not a good dominate either). hahaha (Matthew 5:11)

August 17, 2009

- I was in class today, started a conversation with a girl next to me. She told me she was Methodist, but is now agnostic. I became very interested and I asked her what happened? I answered some questions she had and told her it’s not about church/religion, but relationship. I told her that I love Jesus with all my heart and that His power proves to me that He is real. I explained to her about deaf ears opening and blind people seeing. She then went on to tell me she has a brain tumor and constant headaches. I prayed for her headache, (starting was an 7/8 on a scale of 1-10), afterwards it was a 0! Thank you Jesus. I am believing for NO TUMOR, SHE IS TOO!

August 31, 2009

- I was in my dorm room with a friend that lives down the hall and she said, "Madden! Do you have any medicine? My back is KILLING." I replied, "Well, I believe I do but I could always just pray for your back and you won't need medicine." From what I understand, she doesn't do the whole "church thing" but she gave me permission to pray for her back. She said it was a 6 on a scale of 1-10, I prayed and nothing happened. But, her shoulder then began to hurt. I prayed for her shoulder, all pain left. I made her stand up, and then I prayed for her back again, all the pain left. Jesus is so awesome and showing Himself on this campus! YES!!

September ??, 2009

- A friend of mine has back pain, went from a two to a zero. Jesus is King over small pain too!

September 16, 2009

- A random guy at Wesley (organization on campus) was wearing a ankle brace. He said he felt pain, I prayed, and IN JESUS NAME all the pain left him instantly.

September 17, 2009

- I prayed for a friends "KILLER HEADACHE" and in Jesus name all of the pain left him on the spot. It was awesome, and Jesus is King over EVERYTHING. (Even hangover headaches)

September 19, 2009

- The same friend and I were walking around Wal-Mart waiting for Jesus to show us someone else. A man names George stuck out to me, so we talked to him. At this point George has two hearing aides and a knee brace. His knee was hurting as a 12 on a scale of 1-10. We prayed and commanded the pain and deafness to leave his body and it did! The pain went from a 12 to a 8, then to a zero. He said that before he has no cartilage in knee, but we prayed and afterwards he felt more strength than he ever has felt before. He was planned to have double knee replacement, but not we are all believing for this to not happen!! We walked away for a while, then we went back to talk to George again. We asked him how his hearing was and he took his hearing aides out! My friend and I began to whisper to him and he was talking back and having a PERFECT conversation. He said, "I can hear! I can hear without these hearing aides!!" After our whispering conversation he put the hearing aides in his pocket and walked away!!!! As I was praying I prayed, "Fire of God, burn these hearing aides up NOW in Jesus name." When we were talking later he told me, "My hearing aides are being burnt up. If they are not used the battery burns them up!" Deafness and a knee replacement DESTROYED in Jesus name!!!!

September 29, 2009

- A few weeks ago a friend told me that she possibly has breast cancer. We had people from NorthGate pray over a hanky, then we sent it to her in the mail. Today she is cancer free! Jesus is King over all sickness and diseases.

- Last night a friend of mine had a migraine. We prayed for it, and nothing was happening. We kept praying for it and the migraine went from VERY painful to nothing at all! We're believing for no more migraines. Migraines die in Jesus name!!

October 7, 2009

- I prayed for a guy who was weighed down with depression, anger, confusion, and also a hand that was broken and never healed. I prayed for his emotional problems, and Jesus healed my brother in Christ of those. I then prayed for his hand, and the bone snapped back into place! He was wearing a hand brace, took it off, and showed me the literal difference! It was insane, and Jesus can do unbelievable things. We started a wall of medical equipment in the Wesley Chapel!!

- After praying for him, a girl came up to Lydia and I and asked us to pray for her knees. Apparently she was born with her femurs twisted, and as a result her knees were out of place and her feet were twisted to the side. She has never been able to run around, sad. Lydia, Heidi, and I prayed for her knees and commanded them to get BACK IN PLACE IN JESUS NAME and THEY DID! It was a supernatural miracle, and it was the coolest thing to witness, her knees literally snapped back into place and she was able to jump around. I loved it! Jesus is King, and ALL sickness WILL BOW!

- Neck pain healed in Jesus name, Jesus is KING over all pain and sickness!!!!

Madden Sandlin

Thursday, October 01, 2009

America’s ONLY Hope

Freedom and personal liberty are being stripped away at historic levels, our national debt is rising and the flood of immorality threatens the fabric of this land called America. Called to be both the salt and light of the world, more than I have ever seen, Christians are feeling the urge to “do something” to affect the situation. Many organizations both inside and outside the church are responding to the groundswell in the Christian community offering a/the “solution(s)” that, through some clever Biblical exegesis seems right, righteous and Biblical. From protesting to praying, Christians ARE mobilizing in record numbers for purposes, both political and moral.

Yet in all our fervor, it seems that we are neglecting the simple solution that Jesus gave us for all the ills of humanity:

Preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom.

Yeah, I know, just saying that seems so tired and worn. It’s not nearly as exciting as maybe protesting, picketing or a prayer vigil. But it’s what we have to work with. How did the Gospel become so unpopular among Christians? Why is preaching the Gospel with power something we never do? Why will we pray, fast and worship for years on end but neglect preaching to the lost? Why can we mobilize for a march but not for preaching the message? Why are we so free and bold to “tell is like we see it” in a political discussion online yet so scared to tell our neighbor about Jesus?

How did preaching the Gospel become the last resort?

I believe that most Christians don’t know what we have been given in the Gospel. If we did, we would be more vocal about Jesus and His Kingdom than we would be about voicing our opinion on the latest newsbyte. I am not saying that political action or commentary is bad, it’s not. I’m not saying that prayer vigils or fasting is bad, it isn’t. It’s just not what Jesus told us to do to save a lost and dying world, that’s all.

I get the feeling that we think our problems in this day and age are unique, new and different than the ones Jesus faced in his generation. Maybe they are of a different scope and magnitude, but Jesus’ words and His solutions to the problems of humanity are timeless! They will work, IF we use them.

Boldly and brazenly I will tell you exactly WHY we as a country have found ourselves in such a dire predicament: We don’t preach or live the Gospel.

If we did, there would be no abortion problem, no national debt, near 100% employment and no healthcare debate. There would be no reason to protest immorality, pray against corruption or fast for righteous judges.

Abortion is the termination of life inside the womb. In the vast majority (95%) of abortions performed in the US, the main factor is not the health of the mother or baby or an abortion of a child caused by rape or incest but rather a simple inconvenience on the part of the mother. That’s right; most babies are aborted because the presence of a child in the mother’s life does not suit her. Juniors’ presence isn’t convenient so let’s kill the baby! From 1973 through 2005, more than 45 million legal abortions occurred in the US.

It’s right that the church is outraged over such a holocaust of the unborn. But her chosen solution to end this siege on life is unbiblical and largely ineffective.

God’s solution to abortion is simple. Preach the Gospel to the lost that are having abortions, leading them into a relationship with the Lord of Life. No Christian, full of the Holy Spirit would or could ever consider abortion as an option. If you have, you are not saved. That means that every person you have ever led to the Lord eliminated one person from the pool of eligible abortion participants. It’s actually very simple. Instead of being reactive against the sins of lost people, why not bring in the lost? Seriously, if the church spent one tenth of the time she spends protesting, praying or fasting about abortion in actually preaching the Gospel to people that have abortions, abortion would be a non-issue in a matter of a few years. Let’s have a real life movement that takes all the research that’s been done, identifies the primary recipients of abortions and mobilize to preach the Gospel to that demographic!

Why don’t we stop trying to change the laws that sinners cower under to excuse their sin and just get down to the dirty business of winning the lost?. What about a life movement that is pro-active instead of reactive? Why are we acting surprised at what sinners do and the laws that they pass? And speaking of immoral laws, here is the solution to the problem of liberal activist judges that pass laws that corrupt the fabric of our society: Preach the Gospel to lawyers.

Fewer lost = less sin.

It’s so simple no one will do it.

A huge topic in the news now is the great Health care debate of 2009. Both sides generally agree that insurance premiums are skyrocketing and millions of people in America don’t have access to quality health care. Both sides are also proposing “solutions” that are extremely complicated and expensive.

What can the church do about this HUGE problem?

Look at the church in the book of Acts! When they prayed, people were healed. So many in fact that they brought in the sick from the surrounding towns and they were ALL healed! (Acts 5:16) Healing is as much in the Atonement that Jesus provided as the salvation of your soul and the forgiveness of your sins. The church has lost the conviction of this fact and has abdicated her responsibility to heal the sick to the government. Government is not responsible to heal or provide for the healing of those in our land, the church is! Jesus sent His disciples out in Luke to:

“And He sent them to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.” Luke 9:2

Preach the Gospel and heal the sick; two things that the church won’t do. We’ll protest and we’ll pray but we have been called to preach and heal! Maybe instead of supporting one side over the other in the healthcare debate we should open a new front in the debate! What if our city or our town was recognized in the news as being one of the healthiest cities in the nation? Say it’s not possible? It’s already happened! From 1915 – 1920 John G. Lake trained a small group of minister’s that prayed for the sick and ministered healing full time. In 5 years they had over 100,000 documented cases of healing and were declared to be the healthiest city in the US! If Christians got serious about healing the sick, maybe a third option would open in this great healthcare debate? Our Gospel is free, it works against any disease on any demographic (even illegal aliens) and the trained practitioners can reproduce rapidly!

“And He said to them, Go into all the world, proclaim the gospel to all the creation. He who believes and is baptized will be saved, but he who does not believe will be condemned. And miraculous signs will follow to those believing these things: in My name they will cast out demons; they will speak new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them. They will lay hands on the sick, and they will be well.” Mark 16:15-18