30 December 2012

A Mediator Is No Longer Needed

Lately, I've been really impressed with the Christian church. Christian leaders everywhere have been responsible for bringing the Good News to millions of people all over the world. And, without their sacrifice, not many would know the God of the Bible.
People listening to God speak through their pastor.

For centuries, ministers have humbly shared God's love and forgiveness to people who are searching. These men and women of all denominations have gone to great lengths to lead people to the knowledge of Christ. And, because of them, countless lives have been changed.

However, I just have one small gripe.

No one knows Jesus.

They know all about Jesus. They've read his biography countless times. They've even memorized the words that he said to his disciples. Yet, they don't hear Jesus for themselves (John 10:27).

16 December 2012

Not Comfortable In Your Own Skin

One Saturday, I was over at a friend's house watching Alabama play football (bear with me Auburn fans). This was just like any other college game-day Saturday, except something crazy happened.
Adam and Eve "naked" in the garden.

I brought my laptop with me so I could work on my latest post. I know it's blasphemy to work instead of watching Bama, but I already knew the outcome. Why bother paying much attention when you already know who's gonna win?

I got to a point in my post that I had to think about some Old Testament stuff. I was trying to recall when the first animal sacrifice took place. However, I couldn't think clearly. Even though I knew my team was gonna win, I was back and forth between the TV and my laptop. So, the first sacrifice that came to mind was the ram that appeared in the bush with Abraham and Isaac. However, anyone who knows the Bible well enough would laugh because that's not even close to being right.

Finally, as I often do, I Google'd it. I saw something about Cain and Abel and I was like, "Duh" (Gen 4:1-8)! But, of course, that's not early enough, either. Again, I should have known better. After Adam and Eve ate of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, they realized they were naked (Gen 3:7). Later, we learn that God made garments of skin for them to wear.

09 December 2012

Yes, Gays Are Forgiven Too

Yeah, you heard me. Jesus said he took all sin and nailed it to the cross (Col 2:13-15).

But, the Bible also says that all gays, sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, thieves, greedy, drunkards, slanderers, swindlers will not inherit the Kingdom of God (1 Cor 6:9-10). Hmmm. We have a problem. So which one is it? Are homosexuals forgiven? Did he forgive all sin or not (1 Cor 6:11)?
This is how it's done.

1 Corinthians isn't the only place that specifically mentions who goes to hell. Let's use another popular verse that Law-abiding Christians like to quote. From Revelations we learn that all cowardly, unbelieving, vile, murderers, sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, idol worshipers, and liars will go to hell (Rev 21:8). Well, that just sucks! He pretty much said that the whole world is doomed.

So, what do we have here? Is this a contradiction? Paul says all sin is forgiven, but John says quite the opposite. Who's right?

But wait, that's not all. There's one more sin that Jesus says is unforgivable - blasphemy of the Holy Spirit (Mat 12:31-32). Very interesting. The same guy that took on "all" sin on the cross is somehow making an exception. So which one is it, Jesus? Did you die for all sin or not?

The confusion doesn't stop there. You better get the interpretation of the verses right too. And, if you don't go to the Greek and Hebrew, then you'll never truly understand what God's saying, right? So apparently you need to be a Biblical scholar to make any sense of the Bible. This is ridiculous and it's exactly what religious believers push.

02 December 2012

Hell Is Not What You Think It Is (Part 2)

In my last post, I explained what hell isn't. I described that there is no burning and torture for all eternity. Simply put, hell (or Gehenna) as we know it, is a valley in the Old Testament where people sacrificed their children by burning them alive. This idea of an eternal furnace originally came from religious leaders who took scripture out of context and tried to manipulate and scare people into believing in Jesus.
Hell is the grave.

However, in this post, I want to share some of what God has shown me about hell. What you read might be shocking and go against every single fiber of your religious body, but that's ok. It was shocking for me too. When people have become so accustom to a certain perception or belief, anything new that comes along will certainly be hard to swallow (Mat 6:33-34). There is much I still don't fully understand, but that's the beauty of it. I have all eternity to figure it out.

The first blasphemous thing I want to mention is that hell is on earth. That's right, what we know of hell actually resides on our own planet. As you know, hell is simply defined, in most of its forms, as "the grave" (Gehenna is the exception). When a person dies, they are typically buried in the ground or grave sight. They are completely finished in their present state of being and there is no more breath in them. They have perished and their body has been basically wiped out or "destroyed." The body returns to the dust in which it came (Psa 90:1-6).

18 November 2012

Hell Is Not What You Think It Is (Part 1)

All our lives we've been taught that hell is a horrible eternal punishment for sinners. It's full of pain, fire, darkness, demons, torture, and loneliness. It possesses every single unfathomable nightmare that a person can dream up. There's really nothing good about it and it's the last place anyone wants to end up. However, Christians are adamant about judging everyone to damnation if they don't choose Jesus and turn from their wicked ways. But, what is hell? What if I told you hell is not what you think it is? What if everything you've been taught about hell was only meant to scare you into choosing Jesus?
The road to hell is wide.

Fear tactics are prevalent in the Christian faith. Religious people who scare people to death have actually been around for quite a long time. I remember some of my required reading in school was a sermon by Jonathan Edward's called "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God." This is probably the most popular sermon of all time and has been discussed by theologians and educators all over the world. It was written in the mid 1700's (yes, before there was a United States). And, believe it or not, many have committed suicide after reading his powerful "loving" message.

I still hear preaching like this in churches, today. However, I want you to understand something. These pastors who preach using fear tactics really have no clue who God is. I'm being dead serious. And, I'm pretty sure the only Jesus that Jonathan Edwards knew was Satan himself. Any minister who has used a scare tactic or hell, fire, and brimstone to convict people of their sins, clearly has no idea what hell is...or Jesus for that matter (2 Tim 1:7).

For months now I've been sitting down with God on this subject about hell, but what he's telling me goes against every fiber of my religious being. Nothing he's spoken of has ever been taught from the pulpit in any Christian denomination anywhere. I still keep asking him lots of questions. Sometimes the answers make sense and sometimes they don't. Regardless, I just keep trusting him (Pro 3:5-6). Since I've started unlearning everything I was taught all my life, my world has come alive. I'm still unsure about many things, but I want to share some of what I know with you to get your wheels turning. However, no matter what I say, ask the Spirit what he thinks. Not only am I confident that he'll confirm much of what I tell you, but you'll be shocked at what else he has to say.

03 November 2012

35 Year Old Virgin

Can I just admit something? Being a 35 year old virgin sucks!! Who made up these rules about pre-marital sex? Oh yeah, never mind (Mat 15:18-20).  Well, I still don't like it. Recently, I've thought about all the pros about not having sex before marriage, but it's hard to come up with anything. You would think after all these years I'd have it figured out, but whatever.
Still trying to keep this in my wallet.

Why am I talking to you about this? Because I want more people to make fun of me. Actually, I want to squash any myths about how special being a virgin is. And, maybe my experience and struggles will help some poor dude out there who's trying to do the same.

It's been really difficult being a guy and staying "pure." Frankly, girls just don't get it. From what little I know, y'all just don't have the drive that men do. And, don't give me this, "We want sex just as much as guys...blah blah blah." Anyone who needs that much time and attention just to get sexually aroused doesn't have anywhere near the passion men have. And, it's not what females think about for 23 hours and 59 seconds in a day either (or something close to that).

The only real reason I haven't gone all the way is because I feared what would happen (1 Cor 6:9-11). Honestly, fearing bad results are the only reason I did anything "right." If I didn't have the fear of God, I had the fear of Mom. I just couldn't bear letting either one down.

22 October 2012

Atheists Have It Right

Much of my reader audience is Atheist. I actually like this. And, to be honest, part of the reason is because I've spent some time in a couple of Atheist forums. Ironically, I feel more welcome and at home there. If I do share my thoughts about Jesus in any Christian arena I'm usually shunned or ignored. I'm noticing more and more that most Christians aren't willing to step out of their comfort zones and don't like it when people challenge their ideas they've relied on for years. However, I don't mind being the bad guy.

Lately, I've learned a lot from Atheists and quite honestly, I agree with some of their views. So, I want to write this post for them so they can better understand why Christians say and do what they do.

For all the Atheists out there, it's important you know what's being taught in modern-day Christiandom. So much of what we learn is based solely on fear and performance. Most Christians understand that if you don't believe and do almost everything right, then you clearly don't have a good relationship with God (or you don't know him at all). This causes them to dramatize their beliefs and act in a constant defense mode. But, no matter how hard they try, no one seems to get it right (Rom 3:23-24).

The problem is much deeper than it seems and there's a couple of reasons for it. Most Christians don't view people equally. How can I say this without knowing them? Well, I've been in church long enough to know the difference. Christians claim that all men and women are God's children, but not all people are true family members unless they accept Christ as their Lord (Eph 2:11-22). Simply put, if you're not for them, you're against them (Mat 12:30-32). They see you as the enemy.

14 October 2012

Increase Your Capacity To Love

No one can possibly see another person from God's point of view without accepting the simple facts. It doesn't matter if you don't understand or can't wrap your mind around what God has done. All that's left to do is trust in God's love and forgiveness, then you'll be able to truly love the people around you.
You can never truly love someone until you see them without sin.

This one simple idea will be the new foundation of your Christian life. In the New Testament (and present-day circles) it's called "grace" (Rom 5:12-21). In the Old Testament it was called "unfailing love" (Gen 32:9-10). However, if you don't understand these two terms, nothing God has done will ever make much sense. If you don't accept unfailing love, then you'll never be able to see God's people the way Jesus sees you.

What is grace or unfailing love? It's the realization that Jesus died for all sin. It's the simple idea that God no longer counts sin against his people and that he loves you no matter what. It's that simple, but it's so misunderstood.

The problem is Christians don't believe anyone is forgiven until they accept forgiveness. So, in their human eyes, forgiveness is only made available to those that accept Jesus as their Lord. This elitist point of view says only people who believe in Jesus (Christians) are who Jesus died for; no one else. But, this isn't true. I thought Jesus died for everyone?? Didn't he take on all sin and nail it to the cross? Well, that's the real question, isn't it?

08 October 2012

The Difference Between The World And The Church

Honestly, I don't see much difference in how the world operates and what the church does. I'm not talking about guitars and drums, amps, cool videos, flashy lights, fog, or cool hair and jeans. This is not conforming to the world at all. This is simply culture. Our grandparents thought it was hard core to sing worship songs instead of hymns. I know. What has the church come to?
A church with good artists always has a cool stage.

When Paul was talking about not conforming to this world, he didn't mean don't have flashy lights and cool music in church services. He wasn't talking about exterior stuff. He was talking about being transformed internally. Allowing your mind to be changed. This scripture is one of the most abused texts in the Bible. Seeing this verse in any light other than having an internal change would be using it out of context (Rom 11:30-12:2).

Likewise, I want to focus on a serious problem I find in most churches. Sure, Christians are trying to change people for the good, but how they're going about it is wrong. The world uses fear to control and manipulate people. And, so does the church. There's really no difference.

Let me explain. We constantly see advertisements that use fear to persuade us to buy certain products. The problem is it's so subtle that we don't see it as a fear tactic. For example, everyone knows the recent Corona commercials that show a couple sitting on a private beach even though, in reality, they're on an airplane or working in an office. If we really look at the ad, it's trying to convince us that if we don't drink Corona, then we won't be able to relax and escape the real world.

30 September 2012

I Don't Go To Church Anymore

About 6 months ago, I decided I didn't want to go to church anymore. I've spent my whole life in religious institutions and the entire time they had me believing I had a great relationship with Jesus. But, the truth is, I never really knew him (Mat 7:21-23). I tried to do everything right, but the more I tried, the more I failed. Now, church means something completely different to me.

Growing up, church leaders did a great job of teaching me how to become a good Christian. They taught me how a believer acts, what kind of words to use, and how to live a Godly lifestyle. After so many years of practice and naturally being good at following the rules, I was the spitting image of what a Christian should look like. However, it was living hell.

I would literally lay on the floor in the fetal position begging God to help me not make so many mistakes. I would beg for his mercy for doing things wrong. However, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't be perfect (Jam 1:22-25). All the devil had to do was send some beautiful girl walking by and it was all over. Sure, I could get things right for awhile and I'd start feeling good about myself, but I could only do so much before I messed up again. Once I slipped up, the cycle of feeling horrible and beating myself up would start over.

Church is the place that told me that I had to be careful to follow all of God's commands or I wasn't really living for him. This is why I tried so hard to do the right thing. I saw what they did to people who sinned. I didn't want to be the person that everyone shunned or looked down upon.

25 September 2012

What Is Your Worth?

What are you worth? If you could put a price on your head, what value would you settle for? Let me put it this way, if someone kidnapped you, what do you think a fair price would be?
Jesus saved you from captivity.

I'm serious. Really think about a dollar figure...and try to be realistic.

Why am I asking you this? I think too many people under value themselves. We are always beating ourselves up over the dumbest stuff that doesn't even matter. We look in the mirror and see stupid, ugly, fat, zits, wrinkles, or disabilities and wish we weren't so undesirable. Half the time, married folks don't even believe their spouse when they tell them how wonderful or beautiful they are. The spouse just thinks they're bias or delusional.

Well, I want to paint a better picture of how amazing you are and how much God values you. But, this perception won't be like all the other images you've been given. What I'm about to tell you will stick with you for the rest of your life. This picture is straight from the Source (Rev 22:1).

16 September 2012

The Truth About Forgiveness

This simple Truth will change your entire world. If you don't get this, nothing Jesus did will make any sense.
It's time we see others (and ourselves) in pure Light.

Understand that my goal is to share with you how beautiful you already are and that you don't have to do anything else to make yourself more right with him. I want to open your eyes and show you a different perspective: God's perspective. When you know who you are in Christ, I'm confident that you'll start viewing yourself, and the people around you, in natural Light.

Honestly, Christians don't understand why the gospel they preach stinks. Why would anyone want anything to do with a God that would only forgive people of their wrongs until they accepted him as Lord? But, this is what almost every Christian believes and it's being preached in churches all over the world. However, this couldn't be further from the Truth (John 19:28-30).

Christians believe that Jesus died for only a select few - that his blood sacrifice was only good enough for those that actively call Christ their Savior.

02 September 2012

How To Hear God's Voice (Part 2)

In my last post, I described what the Spirit sounds like and explained my first experience hearing God's voice. Now, I want to share more details about what I've learned about the Spirit's character so that you too can hear directly from him.
The Spirit will be your guide.

I already know one of the first questions you're going to ask. I asked Jesus this very same thing, but his answer, as always, squashed my fears. The question was, "If the Spirit's voice sounds like mine, then how do I know when it's Jesus talking and not just me?" His reply was perfect (and made me laugh). He said, "Dathan, do you really think you could come up with this stuff on your own?" I replied, "You have a good point." This still makes me smile when I think about it. So, stop questioning what you hear and just go with it.

Most of the time when I hear him say something that doesn't make much sense, it's actually him talking. I can't even dream up the stuff he tells me (2 Cor 2:10-16). And, it doesn't matter where you are or what you're doing, he'll use anyone and anything to talk to you (1 John 2:27).

26 August 2012

How To Hear God's Voice (Part 1)

Ok, if any of you have been reading my posts, you know that I'm a big advocate of the Advocate (John 14:15-31). I think the Holy Spirit is the center of every person's world and without him, none of this Jesus stuff would make any sense. We are lost without him. This is why I want to share something that's been on my heart for awhile. I want to help you hear God's voice (John 10:25-32).
Jesus is not in some far off galaxy. He's inside you.

Initially, most of you will feel very uncomfortable with what I'm about to say. Why is that? Well, it's not being taught in any church around the world or by any Christian leaders (that I know of). Why? Well, one of two things is happening. Either pastors are clueless and don't hear the Spirit for themselves, or they are purposefully keeping you in the dark for personal gain. It's important that you understand what has been kept from you for so long. However, you'll soon see that hearing from God is easier and more natural than even reading his Word.

Honestly, if all you know is what the Bible says, then you only know what Jesus said to someone else. It's time that changed. One of my many goals is that you learn to hear him for yourself (Mat 17:5).

Next, I want to share with you something that doesn't make any sense (1 Cor 3:18-20). You've actually been hearing the Spirit your whole life, but probably never knew it. The problem is you were taught to either ignore what you heard, or were made to believe that the voice was wrong or evil. However, these are both lies caused by religion and those who live and operate in fear. Actually, there are many names for the Spirit's voice. A few of those familiar names are your "heart," "conscience," "gut feeling," or "a woman's intuition." Have you ever just known something and didn't know why? You just knew it was the right thing to do/say? This is called the Holy Spirit. He's the one that gave you this knowledge.

19 August 2012

Do You Have A Relationship With Jesus Or A Book?

It's time you realize what a real relationship with Jesus is. 99% of the Christian population claims they have a real relationship with Jesus, when in fact they don't (and it shows).
Too many only hear what they read in the Bible.

I've been in church all my life. During this time I was told by many pastors that in order to have a real relationship with Jesus I had to do a few things. First, I had to confess I wanted Jesus in my life. Next, I needed to repeat a prayer and ask Jesus to forgive my sins. After the "sinner's prayer," there were more steps to follow. For one, I was told to have a daily "quiet time." During this quiet time, I would need to set aside at least 30 minutes dedicated to the Lord. This was done to help me focus on praying and meditating on God's Word. Also, it was important that I showed up to church as often as I could (it was frowned upon if I couldn't at least appear on Sunday's). You have to understand that if you didn't regularly come to church, you were "forsaking the assembly" (Heb 10:23-25). On top of that, everyone knew you needed to be in the House of God in order to worship Jesus with any real significance (it helps to have a band or traditional organ to set the mood). Of course, every church is different and many have their own set of guidelines that save you from Hell.

12 August 2012

There Is No Sin, But One

Unquestionably, it's all about perspective. It's God's perspective that matters, not yours or mine (2 Cor 5:16). Know this.
Jesus made us white as snow.

When Jesus died for all sin, he wasn't joking or playing around. He was about his Father's business and on a mission to save the world. He didn't have time for people who didn't believe and most assuredly told them where they could go if they got in his way (Mat 16:23). He came to bring a sword (not peace) to set his people free from bondage and captivity (Mat 10:34-36). He was tired of so few not wanting a real relationship with his Father. Finally, he came to retire the old promise in order to put a New Testament in place. Ultimately, he purchased us as slaves to sin, then flipped the Universe upside down and made us rightful heirs to God's throne (Rom 8:15-17). Beautiful!

When Jesus took on all sin on the cross, he reached his goal of completely washing God's people by his shed blood (1 Pet 2:22-25). As my friend Beth puts it, water doesn't wash sin, blood does (Rev 1:4-6). You were not cleansed when you were baptized with water or when you decided to "receive" forgiveness (Heb 10:19-23). You were washed on the cross, period. You received forgiveness once for all time and you've ALWAYS had forgiveness (1 Pet 3:18). His sacrifice made us all white as snow.

05 August 2012

What If Jesus Actually Meant What He Said?

What I'm about to tell you will change how you view Jesus and what he did for you and me. Hopefully, we'll start viewing God's people from his perspective rather than our own.
Jesus died for all sin.

Not too long ago, I was chatting with a couple of friends about my favorite subject, Jesus. Thank God this wasn't like one of my Facebook rants! Those can get pretty ugly. After a few minutes, we started talking about each other's religious backgrounds. Then, I dropped the bomb on one of the guys that seemed to be a little more opinionated about his Christian faith than the rest of us. I asked, "What if Jesus forgave your sins on the cross?" He looked at me puzzled because everyone knows that Jesus died for all sin. I had to explain, "Everyone always tells you that you're not actually forgiven unless you receive God's forgiveness or ask for forgiveness. But, what if Jesus meant what he said? What if he, already, forgave everyone all their sins on the cross whether they accept it, or not?" He replied with eyes wide open and said, "Well, if I actually believed that, then that would be a fundamental difference...a HUGE difference. And, if I told anyone in my church what you said, they'd throw me out!"

All our lives, ministers have been instructing us that we must accept his gift of forgiveness in order to be forgiven. In other words, they say we are all scumbag sinners unless we believe Jesus died for us and accept his unfathomable gift. This "receiving" theology has been around for centuries, however, it's not what I read in the Bible or hear God saying.

29 July 2012

Show Your Church The Money!

I am convinced that the modern-day church is completely out of touch with God and simply following old religious traditions. So much of what they do is still operating under the Law of Moses and the Old Testament system that Jesus, already, completed (Jer 31:31-34).

As time goes on, I will slowly show you how bad it's gotten and how blind we've been for centuries. Although most Christian leaders have the best intentions, they don't have a clue who God is or how he operates. I don't care how gentle or loving they appear, good intentions mean nothing. God is building up real leaders who have real faith in their Father.

Now, let me ask you a question. What's the most uncomfortable moment in any church service? That's right! The tithes and offerings has to be the least experience to look forward to. I've grown up in church all my life and I've always felt uncomfortable about monetary sacrifices. However, I was instructed to suppress these "evil" feelings because a true Christian is always a cheerful giver (2 Cor 9). Yet, no matter how hard I tried to ignore my instincts, these uncomfortable feelings would eventually creep back in (Rom 2:14-15).

Honestly, there's just something extremely wrong about passing a collection around and expecting something in return. It doesn't matter if you pass a bucket or expect your congregation to walk to the front/back of the building to drop off their money, it still doesn't sit well with me.

22 July 2012

Oh Yes, Jesus Did Sin

God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God (2 Cor 5:21).
Scumbag Jesus.
The more I spend time with Jesus, the better I get to know his heart. He's shown me that he did, in fact, break the Law. He didn't do it through murder or any other serious offense. He did it in subtle ways. In ways that so many Christians overlook, choose to ignore, or are afraid to talk about. He did what he had to do through righteous judgment to set his people free (Luke 4:14-21).

Does what I'm about to tell you discount the Bible or Jesus? Of course not! In fact, it does quite the opposite. It validates him even more and helps you understand God's only Son. More than anything, I want you to understand who you are in Christ (Col 1:11-14). I want you to realize the freedom he purchased for you and me.

So what makes me dare to say that Jesus sinned? Here are some examples:

17 July 2012

I AM (Video)

A few months ago I realized something special about Moses and the burning bush - from Moses' perspective. So much of what we've been taught is wrong. Unlearn everything! http://www.youtube.com/user/dathanellisd

10 July 2012

What Does The Lamb's Book Of Life Look Like?

One night, I was laying in bed thinking about heavenly things (literally). Just before I was about to fall asleep, God put something on my heart that blindsided me. He reminded me of the Lamb's Book of Life and all the other books he uses to record everything we say and do (Rev 21:22-27). I said to myself "Oookay...where is this going, bro?"
God has a library.

You see, I've always wondered why God needed books. Or, why he felt the need to record everything I did or said (Rev 20:11-15). I hated this fact, honestly. I don't want anyone reading everything I've done. I also thought it was strange for God (who knows everything) to keep such a library of detail on me. Actually, I find it quite judgmental and uncomfortable. Why would my Father want to record this stuff? Does he just like big libraries? He must like to read, right? But, can't he just remember what I did, keep it to himself, and judge me according to what he knows (Ecc 12:13-14)? Why does everyone else in Heaven get to read what I've done? I've always wondered these things and it never sat well with me. I, especially, didn't like the fact that he kept records of all my wrong-doings.

Finally, he revealed it to me. Everything became so clear and it was right under my nose the whole time. I couldn't go to sleep. I was so excited!

06 July 2012

What Is A Good Witness? (Video)

What does it mean to be a good Christian witness? A good witness is not what you think it is. So much of what we've been taught is wrong. Unlearn everything!

26 June 2012

The Separation Of Church And...You

I want to show you a glimpse of how most modern-day churches are keeping you enslaved into their ministry system. My goal is to encourage you to have the life God has truly destined for you (John 10:10).

Working hard for Jesus.
I've been going to church my entire life. Since most of my life consisted of church, I was a part of every facet. Whatever role you can play, I've done it. And, I learned that none of it draws you closer to God. No amount of praise, work, or service is going to draw you into a real relationship with Jesus (Rom 4). Real change comes from Jesus alone (Rom 2:28-29).

Honestly, all this work just creates more church servants that volunteer their free labor (aka slaves) for another man's established religious vision. Church is not the answer. Jesus is the answer. Getting to know his heart should be your #1 objective (Acts 13:22). Service is an automatic response to knowing your Dad. Just because we feel like we're doing something that makes a difference doesn't mean we're actually changing anything.

So, how are most modern-day churches keeping God's people in captivity (Luke 4:18-20)? For one, most Christian leaders simply don't trust God enough to allow you the freedom to grow in the Spirit. This is why they want you to follow their format and rules for being a good church member. They're not teaching you to hear the Spirit's voice. They're not discipling you on how to heal the sick or how to perform miracles. They are not encouraging you to do anything, but become a member of their church and work in the nursery. They accept you with open arms as long as you're willing to give your all to their dream.

15 June 2012

What Pastors Aren't Telling You

Much of what we've been taught in church or from Christian books is either wrong or the Truth is simply being omitted. It's time we not lean on what church leaders say, but on Jesus. God has all the answers and he's given you all his wisdom and knowledge. Wisdom's name is the Holy Spirit (Pro 1:21-23).
Praying on your knees really doesn't mean much.

Let me give you a good example. We've been taught for far too long that in order to get God's attention, and get real answers to prayer, that we have to do something. For decades we've been told that we have to pray an hour a day, bow low before our King, fast, read our Bible, distance ourselves from the world, tithe, give additional offerings, go on a mission trip, serve the church, worship for 3 hours straight, and have next to no sin. And, then (and only then) God may "show up". This is what most of our faithful Christian leaders are teaching...and it's wrong. Honestly, this burns me up. They're still looking for a structured process or formula to get God to answer their prayers which is not how God operates. I think most pastors have good intentions, but good intentions mean nothing. They're still trying to get you closer to God by doing something from the outside-in. As if anything on the outside (like reading, singing, tithing, following commands etc) has anything to do with it (Rom 4).

Seriously, I dare to say that most pastors don't have a real relationship with Jesus and don't hear his voice on a regular basis. Sure, they know of him and I'm also positive they're some of Jesus' biggest fans, but a fan will never know the heart of the Star. They can only read facts and statistics, hoot and holler, and wear their team's colors.

08 June 2012

New Vlogs!

I'm trying something new. There's always so much more I want to say with every blog I write and I feel this is the best way to communicate how I feel and what I'm thinking. I tried recording this from my phone about 8457 times before I ended up with what you see. Thanks for checking it out!

See my YouTube channel for more: www.youtube.com/dathanellisd

03 June 2012

You Are Perfect

Let me ask you something. What's more true? What Jesus thinks of you, or what you think of yourself? Clearly, what he thinks is the real truth. So, why do you keep looking at your flaws and imperfections? Why do you keep beating yourself up over the dumb mistakes you've made? It's all about perspective and it's his perspective that counts, not yours or anyone else's.
Jesus doesn't see it that way.

Religious leaders that I know from popular ministries have told me that they felt "very very sorry" for me. They look down on me because I actually think I'm perfect and tell others their perfect too. They think I'm leading God's people astray for communicating this. They, sincerely, don't think anyone is perfect and we are all full of sin. However, this is not the Jesus I know nor is this what the Bible teaches. Most Christians want you to believe you're full of sin so you will run to the church to get saved and "get right" with God. Too bad most Christians don't believe all sin is forgiven (Eph 1:6-11).

You see, I love to encourage you and tell you how great and wonderful you are. I'm pretty good at it. Why do I do this? Because it's what I hear Jesus telling me. The encouraging words that come out of my mouth are not my own. People think I have this great gift of singing praises about people, but they've been fooled. I just repeat what I hear my Father saying. I love telling people how precious they are in his sight! Hang out with me long enough and you'll see what I mean.

14 May 2012

Your Fruit Looks Better Than Mine

For far too long Christians have been focusing too much on bearing good fruit. We're taking the wrong approach. We're spending most of our energy trying to follow commands and do the "right" thing (John 14:15). However, I want you to see things differently. I'm asking you to stop working to change your behavior.

We are so desperate to change how we think and act. We learn quickly that the Bible says we will know each other by the fruit we bear, but the fruit was never supposed to be the focus (Mat 12:33-37). Producing good fruit is not something we can achieve or conjure up on our own. It is simply a natural by-product of being connected to Jesus.

One of the biggest problems is the religious people that surround us. These people seem to have it altogether. They look so humble, trendy (or traditional), and so well established. They have the right smile, attitude, and say all the right things with the proper tone of voice. Church pastors and leaders are the worst at this. However, most of what we see is only a facade.

Most good Christians I come in contact with have done an incredible job of working to make their lives look good. This is easy for some people because they have a natural ability to follow rules. However, not everyone is built this way. Others have a harder time following structure or processes that people put in place. So, clearly, those with a natural gift to be obedient will always appear to have their acts together.

07 May 2012

Quit Asking Jesus To Forgive Your Sins

I've learned that I don't have to keep asking God to forgive me of my sins. One day, not too long ago, I was praying and asking for forgiveness of all these things I did wrong and Jesus said, "Dathan, why do you keep asking me that?" I was like, "Uhhhhh, because that's what I'm supposed to do." Then Jesus asked me, "Did I die on the cross for your sins?" And, I said so confidently (like I knew the answer to this test question), "Yes, of course you did." Then he said, "Do you believe this?" Again, I replied confidently, "Of course, I do!" I thought at this point he was testing my faith. However, he had a completely different motive I never saw coming. What he said next shocked me. He said, "So, why do you keep asking me to forgive you of your sins if I already forgave you?" I had no words to respond. I just sat there like a dummy. I waited minutes before saying anything else and finally answered, "I have no idea."

I started to think more about this, but my brain wanted to reject it. I couldn't wrap my mind around what he said. This went against everything I was ever taught. Even though my heart knew what he said was Truth, I still couldn't believe it (Pro 3:5-6).

Next, he reminded me about the woman who was found in the act of committing adultery (John 8:1-11). The religious leaders (people who were supposed to know God, but clearly didn't) were trying to stone her and Jesus asked for those without sin to throw the first stone. Each one of them had plenty of sin, so they slowly left the scene. Jesus, the only one without sin, asked her, "Where are your accusers? Do they still condemn you?" "No, they don't," she replied. He finally said, "And, neither do I. Go and sin no more." The only person good enough to throw a stone, did quite the opposite - he immediately forgave her. She never asked for forgiveness or even said she was sorry. She just turned around and left (in utter shock, I'm sure). Jesus forgave her before he had a chance to die on the cross. This is the kind of love God has for us.

01 May 2012

He Hung The Moon

Have you ever payed much attention to the moon? I mean, really looked at it. Its purpose and function is pretty amazing. You see, I'm a huge fan of Space. Anything to do with the Cosmos impresses me. It just blows my mind that there's more out there than we could possibly imagine (1 Cor 2:8-9). There's so much more to be discovered. However, we limit ourselves to only seeing what's directly in front of our face. The fact is, what we can't see is more real than what we can see (John 3:10-17). God's perfect example has been staring at us for centuries, but we never saw it. Recently, God has shed a whole new light on the moon's meaning.

For one, the whole purpose of the moon is to govern the night-time sky (Gen 1:14-19). God gave it the role of lighting up the night so we wouldn't remain in complete darkness when the sun goes down. Why is this important? We would be completely without hope that the Sun would return the next day if it wasn't for the moon. The moonlight assures us that the sun is still there. We are also assured that the Son will come back soon (1 Cor 1:4-9).

The moon also provides an accurate picture of how we view ourselves. If you were the moon, all you'd see is boring gray dust and a bunch of holes and craters covering your surface. Isn't this how we see our outward appearance? We simply think we're not that attractive. We only see our flaws. Don't we all look in the mirror and go, "Man, I'm fat," "Another zit?!" or, "Where is all this back hair coming from??" If the moon had a personality, it would probably be one depressed person. It jealously, stares at the Earth and all its majesty.

22 April 2012

You Are A Superhero!

Not too long ago, I was listening to some music while working out. The artist said something that stopped me in my tracks. I've played the song many times, but it was different this time. The verse said, "...transform yo mind like David Banner." I knew immediately he was referring to the Hulk. Then, as clear-as-day God said, "I want you to start viewing yourself as a superhero." I was like, "You want me to do what?!!"

The Hulk
Yeah, I thought it was crazy. But the more I absorbed it, he started making more sense. God reminded me who the mightiest superhero is of all time - Jesus (Rom 14:11). He's stronger and more powerful than any other heroes we read and watch movies about. He saved and transformed the entire world from sin in one fail swoop. He defeated the enemy and any hold the world had on us. And, the grave couldn't stop him (Matt 28:1-10).

After Jesus was seated on his throne, he sent us another savior. We call this guy the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God lives inside you and me. Jesus' blood is literally flowing through our veins (2 Tim 1:6-7). This has to mean that you have the ultimate Superhero living inside your body. Also, this means that we are capable of achieving much greater things than we perceive. If you have the Spirit of the Living God inside you, then anything is possible (Phi 4:12-13).

15 April 2012

There Are Two Types Of Christians

There are 2 types of believers in the world. The first type is a servant of God. These Christians genuinely have a desire to serve God in any capacity. It could be as a volunteer at their local church, on staff at a church or faith-based organization, on the mission field, writing a book or blog, or just setting a good example wherever they go. These people are genuine about their faith and really want to make a difference.

It's important that his people follow his commands and live a Christ-like lifestyle. By doing this, it proves that you truly love him and care about what he says (John 14:15-21). It shows that you walk in the Light and want to do the things that please him.

Being obedient and following his Word is the best thing you can do as a true Christian servant. Otherwise, if we fail at following his Word we can seriously end up hurting people and disappointing God. After all, we are very weak people that suffer trying to do everything right day after day, but we must keep persevering. If you really love him, you follow his commands.

Unfortunately, I believe most Christians are servants of God. In other words, if you are following the kind of Christian lifestyle I just explained (from this paragraph up), you're doing it wrong.

08 April 2012

How Is A Man The Bride of Christ?

Obviously, women understand what it means to be the bride of Christ much easier then men. So, until Jesus comes to get his spotless bride, how are we supposed to relate (2 Cor 11:1-4)?
Cool Aztec guy

You see, the more I study the Bible the more I realize how much of a love story it is (Matt 22:36-40). He's constantly showing and proving how much he loves his people. The more time I spend with him, the more I keep hearing him say mushy stuff like, "I love you. And, I will take care of you." Everything he does and says proves this over and over again in my life.

At first, all this love talk was weird. It was so uncomfortable to hear or even articulate back to him. However, at the time, I didn't have much love in me. Honestly, it wasn't until I had a revelation of God's love that I began to truly hear and see him. After awhile, I decided to Google God (ask him) what he thought about all this bride talk. I told him that it made little sense and it was impossible for me to relate since I wasn't a girl. However, it's starting to make more sense.

Men, deep down inside, we are much like a woman. We all were made in God's image (Gen 1:27). There's really not that much separation as the world (or church) makes it out to be; something I'm realizing more everyday.

01 April 2012

What Is It About A Woman...

Women, your purpose and worth are much more valuable than you probably know.

I'm a firm believer that a person's confidence and success in life is determined by how much they know about themselves and how much they know their worth. God's decision to create a woman was genius. I'd like to do my best at expressing a woman's value from where it all started - Adam and Eve.

There's a reason God does everything. Nothing is coincidence. God simply amazes me all the time. His ability to know what's going on and to make all things work for good is beyond me (Rom 8:28-30). The story of Adam and Eve is a perfect example and explains much of who we are (as men and women) and what we were created for (Gen 2). This one is for the ladies.

One of the main reasons God decided to create a woman was for her abilities. You see, God is able to create on a whim. He is powerful enough that he could just twitch his nose and out pop 14 living creatures of the sea. When he created Adam, he made him in his image. He looked much like Jesus. He also gave Adam similar roles as Jesus. Man was given a kingdom to reign over and land to call his own. He was given animals and livestock to fill his domain. But, there was one problem. He never gave Adam the ability to create.

Before God made Eve, he kept bringing man different wild animals and livestock to name. As Adam carefully named each one (because you name the things you love), God determined something wasn’t quite right. Adam did a good job naming the animals, but no names had much value. The names of the animals didn't seem to have as much meaning or depth.  However, as soon as Adam laid eyes on Eve, he knew what she was capable of. As God proudly surprised Adam with what he'd been missing, Adam leaped with excitement and called her "Life" (Eve). After seeing Eve, Adam knew his life was complete. He knew right away that she would help him create life much like he saw his Father doing. She had much more value than anything else. You bring life to a man's world. Adam wasn't given this gift; you were. However, man and woman, together, produce life - creations of our own.

25 March 2012

What A Girl Wants

This post is more for the fellas than it is for the ladies. However, if you girls want to read and chime in, that's quite alright with me. ~:-)


Why do women seem to find non-Christian men, who are jerks, more appealing? Because the men seem to exude confidence. Honestly, girls usually find us more attractive in our sin, then when we become Christians. Why? Because most Christian men are sissies.

Girls are looking for a man who is strong and confident. However, what they usually find is mostly fake. They know what they're searching for, but they haven't quite found it. They keep searching for something real, but they haven't seen many good examples. However, that's all about to change when they see the man you're about to become.

Not too long ago I went to a church at a Christian-based drug and alcohol rehab center for men (about 45 mins from my house). As soon as I stepped into the place, I knew it was where I needed to be. I learned so much about God's love and grace. I found the freedom to be myself and grow.

17 March 2012

Why Are You Here?

When I used to help with the girls and boys in Moldova they would always tell each other, "If you are born, God has a plan for you. You are not a mistake." They would tell each other this constantly. It was one of the first things they would tell the new girls and boys as they first stepped into their new safe home. And, they started to believe it. These kids literally had nothing and absolutely no one loved them, but now they know they are loved...by their real Father. They know they're no longer orphans. How is it that these orphan girls and boys from a third world country know better than we do that God has a real plan for us?

Do you know your purpose for being here? I know the answer and it's not what you think. So many churches tell you that your purpose is to spend your life praising God, doing good work for him, and/or doing your best to make a real difference. None of this is true. These are just by-products of your real purpose.

God designed you, just the way you are, because he was lonely. This God of yours is huge! He can do so many great things and we'll never see his full glory. It's limitless. If this is true, then why would someone so great want anything to do with little ole you or me? Honestly, he didn't want anyone else. He chose you. He has created you just the way you are and he thinks you're perfect. It's not what you or anyone else thinks. What he thinks is all that matters.

09 March 2012

Stop Telling People How Bad They Are

Example of how not to do it.

Why is it that people generally feel they're going to heaven even if they don't know Jesus? These people feel this way because they actually believe they're a good person in spite of all they've done wrong. Everyone makes mistakes all the time. Everyone sins. Everyone knows this already.

So, again, why do people feel they're good enough to make it to heaven even if they don't know how to get there? Because the Holy Spirit tells them so. He is constantly telling all of us how good we are in Jesus.

Jesus paid a high price for sin once and for all (Rom 3:19-31). Then, that must mean that he died for all people, everywhere. You're not forgiven just because you've accepted Christ. You were forgiven a long time ago and all your sins were washed away; even your present and future sins. He paid the price for your sin whether you accept this fact or not. He did this for all mankind and it's part of what Paul calls, the "Good News (Col 1:21-23)."

01 March 2012

Email From Hell

A friend of mine recently sent me this in an email and I wanted to share my response. I'm going to continue to share with you what Law looks like. What religion tries to teach you, not what Jesus teaches. What most churches preach is not the truth that's in the Bible you read. Like the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, it looks good to eat, but it only leads to death and more sin. Read the attachment below first:

Email attachment sent from a friend. Click article for larger size.

02 February 2012

It's Too Hard To Be A Christian

For awhile now I've had a hard time accepting what Jesus has been teaching me. I'm starting to finally discover the words to explain how I feel.

The Bible says this about the commandments:
“Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?”

Jesus replied, “‘You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” (Mat 22:36-40)

He said all the commandments (things you gotta do) hang on this: Love God and love your neighbor. That's it. There's nothing else to do. Here's an example: Say I have a shirt hanging in my closet. If I remove the hanger from the shirt, what happens? The shirt falls on the floor. If love is not your hanger, then you fail at following any other command. No one can follow all the commands of the Bible flawlessly.

22 January 2012

The Too Good To Be True News

"Jesus paid it all, all to him I owe.
Sin had left a crimson stain, he washed me white as snow."

Paul constantly references the Good News in the New Testament (2 Thes 2:14). What is Paul talking about? Is he just saying the Good News is all about Jesus dying on the cross for our sins, then, raising up again after 3 days to conquer death, hell and the grave? Is that what the Good News is all about? Well, yes it is. However, the problem is, it's only the beginning of the Good News.

Two thousand years ago Jesus was nailed to a cross for your sins (John 19). Before you were ever a thought. Before you even had a family tree or before there was such a thing as an America, you were being thought of on the cross. Jesus was like, "That Dathan. Man, I love him so much that I'm going to flip his world upside down. I can't wait to see his face when he realizes what I've done for him!!"

11 January 2012

I Believe In Santa Claus (True Life Story)

After I wrote my previous post I Believe In Santa Claus, my friend Lesley Langston sent me her Christmas story. I felt it was too good not to share. Here is what she wrote (unedited, as it should be):

"So, this Christmas I was really worried!! I mean, I quit my job to take care of a blood issue that Matthew had and shortly afterward, our financial life went straight to "hell in a handbasket." Then this Summer, I took my niece in because of my sister's drug addiction. In November, I started getting really scared that we wouldn't have a Christmas because we seriously had no extra money for anything. Then, as if that wasn't enough to worry about, my sister gave birth to another baby on Thanksgiving that they wouldn't let her take home, again because of her addiction issues. He couldn't go home so I took him too.

03 January 2012

I Believe In Santa Claus

You probably don't believe he's real, but I think you should reconsider. Let me explain:

First off, we know Santa Claus to be some big, jolly old guy that wears a red suit and has a big white beard. He delivers presents on Christmas Eve to all the girls and boys as they sleep. He also flies through the air with his sleigh pulled by 9 reindeer. And, he has many elves that spend all year making toys at the North Pole. So, what does this have to do with anything?

Well, it hit me the other day. You know all those fake Santa Claus' that appear in public places just before Christmas? They dress up like Santa, but they're not the real thing. They're just his helpers. They're just dressed up like Santa to help get the kids excited about Christmas. There's always a line of kids waiting patiently to see him as the parents sit back and take pictures of their cuteness and innocence. Ok, you already know this.

I started thinking about these "helper Santa's". They do a good job of portraying what the real Santa Claus looks and acts like. This is what Christians should be like too. This image of Santa Claus, is much like who our Father is. He's big, ancient and always full of love and laughter. Of course, many of us don't view God in this manner. Rather, we see him as an angry Zeus-like character. However, Santa is not a bad guy. He's a good guy that needs a break. He actually does a better job at showing God's love than you and I do.