|IN THIS UPDATE:
- FREE MP3 download: "Hurt and Bitterness"
- Melody ministers in Shreveport, LA this week
- Americans Against Abortion (AAA) Today
- "Forgive, or Forget It!" by Keith Green
- SALE on "No Compromise" audiobook MP3
...Read by Melody, Packed with Music and More
Passover and Easter
Celebrations of Deliverance
This week, I’ve been thinking about Passover and how God delivered the Jewish people enslaved in Egypt so long ago. The Lord sent many plagues on Egypt to compel Pharaoh to release them from bondage, to no avail. In the final plague, God would strike the land of Egypt and bring death to every firstborn son in Egypt. (Exodus 12)
The Blood of a Lamb
As God prepared to pass judgment on the Egyptians, He also spoke clearly to the Jewish people. God told them to slaughter an unblemished lamb for each household and sprinkle its blood at the top and sides of their doors and to stay inside from twilight until dawn. The pattern of blood as God directed was in the shape of a cross.
"The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt." (Exodus 12:13)
God kept His promise to the Jewish people that anyone (Jew or Gentile) hidden inside a home with lamb’s blood on their door would be delivered from death and the death of their firstborn sons.
Passover is celebrated to this day
to thank God for deliverance from slavery and death.
The exact day Jesus shed His blood on the cross and died was also the day of Passover that year. The Jewish people in Jerusalem at that time were preparing to celebrate God's deliverance from Egypt many years before through the blood of the lamb.
Easter celebrates Jesus rising from the dead after three days in the tomb. His victory over death delivered us from eternal destruction. The blood Jesus shed on the cross on Passover released us from slavery to sin and bought our forgiveness. Jesus Himself is our Passover Lamb.
“For Christ, our Passover Lamb has been sacrificed.” (1 Cor. 5:7)
It’s no coincidence that Judaism and Christianity overlap in significant and meaningful ways. Both Passover and Easter share the same core truth -– that God in His mercy will deliver His people by the blood of the Lamb.
This year the Jewish and Christian calendars fall beautifully close to each other again. Passover begins at twilight on the anniversary of Jesus’ death.
Easter is celebrated to this day
to thank God for deliverance from slavery and death.
I encourage you to take time to ponder the miracle of God’s deliverance and His merciful forgiveness. God’s free gift to us paved the way for us to forgive others too. We must not only receive forgiveness, but also extend forgiveness to others.
“If you forgive those who sin against you,
your heavenly Father will forgive you.” (Matt 6:14)
Sometimes forgiving others is difficult. I’m always challenged by Keith’s article below. Thinking of the Jewish people in Egypt being protected by applying the blood of the lamb to their doorposts, let’s also remember God gave all of us this gift when we apply His blood to the doorposts our heart. And because He forgave us, we can forgive others.
This week I’ll celebrate Passover with friends who are also Jewish believers in Jesus. Then I’m celebrating Jesus’ resurrection and speaking at a church on Easter Sunday. May you have a wonderful celebration of God’s deliverance and His forgiveness.
Help LDM Reach America
And the Nations
Americans Against Abortion (AAA)
Every generation must find their moral compass. I have seen the urgency to bring God’s value of LIFE to the current culture. The lines are fuzzy and many are very confused.
Help Us Take our Pro-Life Ministry (AAA)
To a New Generation
“I find it hard to just ignore the murdered unborn children. Yes times have changed but still God warns, you shall not take a life. I want to save a life today. I want to keep one alive for my Father. Their lives are spilled out like water. Like lambs to the slaughter. And each one was handmade by Jesus.” (music/words: Keith and Melody Green)
* We want to distribute the powerful DVD of “Baby Choice” for FREE to everyone who wants it.
* Our materials on Pro-Life Issues are relevant and this generation needs to have them.
We have Great News!
Our Current Needs
- With your help we’ve redesigned a part of our site to highlight our FREE teachings.
- The letters of testimony coming to LDM are increasing.
- The transition of staff and location is close to being completed.
- We need to hire someone for our goal of networking the ministry of LDM and AAA.
- We need a skilled tech management person to fully accomplish our online vision.
- My workload unexpectedly doubled in the transition and an assistant needs to be hired.
- We need the funding to do the above and much more!
To keep moving forward, our goal is to raise $26,000 by the end of May. We've always been able to do a lot with just a little, and every dollar is used wisely. We want and need your support.
(When you click the donate button you can give directly through LDM’s secure site or use your PayPal account. Please send the best gift you can.)
Each and every gift will help LDM minister and AAA save lives.
Forgiveness - Forgive Or Forget It!
By Keith Green
There I was, seated in row 17, flying from Dallas to Los Angeles. I began to day-dream, thinking about a friend of mine who had once treated me (what I thought was) unfairly in a financial dealing we'd had. As I turned the whole incident over in my mind, I remembered how I had originally consoled my bruised feelings by thinking to myself, "Well, that's okay, it's God's money anyway - God'll deal with him."
But flying on that jet through the night, I started to get an uneasy feeling inside, almost like vengeance. All of a sudden, it wasn't enough to put the whole thing in God's hands. I found myself thinking, "I sure hope the Lord brings that whole thing up when so-and-so stands before Him on the day of judgment."
The Stupid Things I've Done
And then, immediately, the Lord broke into my thoughts and said to me, "I'll be glad to bring it up - as long as you don't mind Me bringing up all the stupid things you've done!"
I burst out laughing, right there in row 17. All at once I saw the sad hilarity of it all. I had never really forgiven him at all! Even with all my spiritualizing about the Judgment Seat, what I was really saying in my heart was, "He'll get his!" With one sentence, the Holy Spirit showed me gross unforgiveness in my heart - not only toward this brother, but toward many others who had hurt or offended me.
In an instant, I completely understood Jesus' words, "If you do not forgive men, then your [heavenly] Father will not forgive your transgressions." (Matt. 6:15)
The Unmerciful Slave
In the 18th chapter of Matthew (vs. 23-35), there's an incredible tale about this guy who owed the king a whole lot of money. "And... there was brought to him one who owed him 10,000 talents" (worth more than ten million dollars today). "But since he did not have the means to repay, his lord commanded him to be sold, along with his wife and children and all that he had, and repayment to be made.
"The slave therefore falling down, prostrated himself before him, saying, 'Have patience with me, and I will repay you everything.' And the lord of that slave felt compassion and released him and forgave him the debt."
I think the most beautiful part of this story is the fact that the king forgave him the debt... over ten million dollars worth!! The main reason he canceled it was that even though the slave promised to eventually repay it, it was obviously an impossible amount of debt to ever work off in one's lifetime. Therefore, in his compassion, showing that when the king released him from it forever... or did he?
Let's Read On...
It says immediately in the very next verse (vs. 28), "But that slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii; and he seized him and began to choke him, saying, 'Pay back what you owe.' So his fellow slave fell down and began to entreat him, saying, 'Have patience with me and I will repay you.' He was unwilling, however, (to forgive him) but went and threw him in prison until he should pay back what was owed."
Can you imagine the nerve? You've just been forgiven ten million dollars, and instead of going out and celebrating, you go and find some poor Joe who owes you 18 bucks! He's probably heard about your good fortune through the grapevine and thinks you're gonna invite him to the party, when all of a sudden you start strangling the daylights out of him. And when he asks you to be patient and give him a few days to repay you, you refuse and throw him in jail. It might not sound like something you'd do, but I bet you've done it before.
You see, if your sins have been forgiven by Jesus, you've had an incredible debt erased. Any bitterness or unforgiveness in your heart, after the total amnesty you've received, makes you as bad as the unmerciful slave. His unforgiveness was not only stupid, it also blew the whole deal with the king!
"When his fellow slaves saw what had happened, they were deeply grieved and came and reported to their lord... Then summoning him, his lord said to him, 'You wicked slave, I forgave you all that debt because you entreated me. Should you not also have had mercy on your fellow slave, even as I had mercy on you?'
'And his lord, moved with anger, handed him over to the torturers until he should repay all that was owed him." Then Jesus adds the stinger... "So shall My heavenly Father also do to you, if each of you does not forgive his brother from your heart."
(Continued in right-hand column, above...)
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HEAR MELODY SPEAK
THIS WEEK IN LOUISIANA
Wednesday, April 4th, 6 PM:
From Bondage To Freedom Church
Wednesday Evening Service
2020 Hollywood Ave., Shreveport LA
Saturday, April 7th, 11 AM:
Congregation Messiah Now!
Sabbath Service, held at:
First Evangelical Lutheran Church
2115 Line Ave., Shreveport LA
Sunday, April 8th, 10:30 AM:
Christian Center Shreveport
Easter Sunday Service
207 Idema, Shreveport LA
Reaching The Jewish People
Melody spoke in March to the annual gathering of the Lausanne Consultation on Jewish Evangelism. She saw old friends and made new ones among a group focused on reaching the Jewish people with their Messiah.
It was a privilege to share the story of her and Keith's Jewish heritage and their journeys to finding Jesus.
Melody with Marty and Jennifer Goetz, worship leaders
Read by Melody Green
Did you know Melody and Keith are both Jewish? You can listen in as she reads their testimony.
Joined by a host of friends, Melody narrates this audio documentation of Keith's and her life. Packed with music and personal reflections from those who impacted them!
Hurt and Bitterness:
Where Does It Start?
Where Does It End?
Free MP3 audio teaching
by Winkie Pratney
Use Voucher Code
FORGIVE at checkout
You'd be surprised at how many problems and habits have sprung out of forgotten and unforgiven hurts. In this study, Winkie uncovers the steps that lead a person into the depths of bitterness and shines a light on the practical ways out.
(For more by Winkie, go to:
by Keith Green
(Continued from left column)
Jesus certainly couldn't have made Himself any clearer about how upset our Father in heaven gets when, after forgiving us for an eternal debt of sin, we hold some little five-and-dime grudge against someone else "for whom Christ died."
I think it's also important to note that the debt the king had originally called off was now on again - and in full! This has many theological implications; but, since I'm no theologian (and the implicated subjects are perhaps some of the stickiest and most heavily debated in the Church today), I will safely say, "Whoever has ears, let him hear."
"If You Have Anything Against Your Brother..."
At any rate, all this goes to warn us that if we have anything in our hearts against anyone, we should go to that person quickly and get the whole thing totally cleared up. It might be our parents, or an employer, a teacher, or even a husband or wife. But in the light of this parable, we can see that however much anyone has hurt us, it doesn't even compare to the free gift of God's pardon for our sins. We must not put that forgiveness in danger of being made void by our refusal to "go and do likewise." For the Word of God says, "If possible. ..be at peace with all men... [for] these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ, and gave us the ministry of reconciliation." (Rom. 12:18; II Cor. 5:18)
A Root Of Bitterness
Bitterness is a deadly thing - a real cancer. In Hebrews 12:15, it says, "See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled." According to this Scripture, bitterness cannot only hurt you, but it can spread like gangrene to others!
When you trace the life-histories of men like Adolph Hitler, for example, you find that the great evils they engaged in later in life had their roots in deep-seated hurts from early in their childhood.
The mass-murders of the Charles Manson family stemmed from Manson's bitterness toward a record producer who didn't like his music. Outraged, Manson sent his "family" to the producer's house (not knowing that he had moved) and told them to kill anyone they found there. The appalling result was that all of the victims ended up to be people who Manson had never even met, showing that when bitterness runs unchecked in our hearts, it can spill over into other people's lives, and "by it, many be defiled."
Cults can even develop when the leaders get bitter towards the main-line churches or denominations. The life stories of such men as Joseph Smith, Moses David (Children of God), John Todd, and Jim Jones all have one thing in common - their hatred for hypocrisy in the Church. But when their hatred turned to self-righteousness and intense resentment, it ruined the faith of many others - destroying whole families and even lives.
"For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened." (Rom. 1:21)
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