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Won’t Heaven be Grand!?

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While reading about how God watched over and took care of Elijah the prophet in I Kings this morning, I had this overwhelming joy as I thought about how wonderful it will be to meet people like Elijah when we get to Heaven. Oh, the stories he and all of God’s great prophets can tell! But until then, we are so privileged to have God’s only true KJV Word:

I Kings 17:1-16 “1 And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead, said unto Ahab, As the LORD God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word. And the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward, and hide thyself by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook; and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there. So he went and did according unto the word of the LORD: for he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith, that is before Jordan. And the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening; and he drank of the brook. And it came to pass after a while, that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land. And the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee. So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, the widow woman was there gathering of sticks: and he called to her, and said, Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink. And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand. And she said, As the LORD thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die. And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son. For thus saith the LORD God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the LORD sendeth rain upon the earth. And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days. And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake by Elijah.” And they had to do absolutely nothing but trust in God!

Won’t it be grand to sit and listen to all the people in God’s Word who are now in Heaven share the glories of our Lord while they made their journeys through this finite human world?! There is not enough paper in this world to write it all down.

 
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Posted by on April 11, 2019 in God's Love

 

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We Must Take Care Not to Mislead

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If there is one thing that really makes me indignant it is when adults feel the need to share what “they” believe instead of what God’s Word says when a child asks a valid question. They need the truth, especially as they get older. I was instructed many years ago as a Sunday School teacher of what God’s Word tells us about taking care not to mislead these young ones in Matthew 18:6 “But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.” Yes, I take very seriously how I answer children’s questions. If I am not sure of an answer, I let them know I’m not sure, and I sit down with them and with God’s Word as we pray and seek His direction. I want them to know how to find answers for themselves.

Not long ago a youth very close to me asked me the question, “When our pets die, do they go to Heaven?” Now, no matter how much I wanted to tell him yes because that’s what we all want to believe, I felt that he trusted me to give him the truth. So I showed him what the Bible says about the spirits of humans and animals at the time of death: Death is the departure of the spirit from the body in humans and animals. Ecclesiastes 3:21 tells us “Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?” I used to think that my beloved pets went to Heaven when they died; as children need to believe, I guess. I even read as far as I could in a book a Christian wrote once on the subject. It did not take me long to see that the author had taken a lot of verses out of context to try and prove his point.

That author also neglected the truth that animals do not have souls. Death is also the departure of the soul from a human. There are two invisible beings inside of us: a spirit and a soul. When Jesus died on the Cross, His spirit went to Heaven (Luke 23:46), and His soul went into hell, or the heart of the earth, “Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.” (Acts 2:27, 31) Jesus went to get the Saints who had passed before Him, from Abraham’s bosom. The spirit and soul are distinctly different and both leave the body at death: 1 Kings 17:21-22, ” And he stretched himself upon the child three times, and cried unto the LORD, and said, O LORD my God, I pray thee, let this child’s soul come into him again. And the LORD heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived.” Animals do not have souls, only humans do. Animals have spirits. Animals also do not have the reasoning power in their brains to know about being a sinner and needing and accepting The Saviour is the only way to Heaven as humans do. Although there will be animals in Heaven, they will not be our dearly departed pets.

Later, this young man came back to me after visiting another adult in his life who said she did not agree with what I had told him. I asked him if she showed him in God’s Word where it says animals go to Heaven, or why she believes they do? He said, “No, she just said she did not agree with you.” I sensed his hurt and disappointment because she is someone he looks up to also, and I felt angry that this person, because of her ill feelings and envies toward me, would so nonchalantly let those feelings come across to an innocent child. Children are so very perceptive of these things, and it can be quite damaging to them. It’s just like when a couple gets divorced and the judge tells them not to demean each other in front of the children. What typically ends up happening is the children will grow to dislike or even hate the person who does this.

Since I would never speak ill of this person to this child, I prayed in my spirit for the Lord to help me lovingly reiterate what and why I had told him my answer to his question in the first place. I asked him if he wanted to pray with me that the Lord will show her the truth, because he was so concerned. We talked about how we can all have pre-conceived ideas about things and not know that we are wrong according to God’s Word, until someone shows us the truth. We also talked about how it is okay for people to disagree, but not to try and force our beliefs. I do not believe that this subject is a huge deal that needs debating or arguing about. Being wrong about this will not keep someone from going to Heaven. At God’s direction, we are to share God’s truth and leave it in His hands. I am still praying that the Lord will speak to that person and convict her of how she influences these young ones.

 
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Posted by on November 11, 2017 in God's Truth

 

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And the Earth Groans Under Mankind’s Sin

I have to chuckle at these fools like Al Gore who push a false agenda of so-called global warming so that he can profit from it. I believe what we witness today and see growing worse each year is the continued groaning of the earth. It is the groaning of the pain it experiences from the initial sin of mankind in the Garden that brought about the curse on all of God’s creation. It is that groaning that will continue to get worse as our sin grows worse. When God returns, He will make an end of our sin and an end of the groanings. He will make a New Heaven and a New Earth. Isaiah speaks of this in Chapter 24. (Matthew Henry’s Concise Comments added)

Isaiah 24

1 Behold, the LORD maketh the earth empty, and maketh it waste, and turneth it upside down, and scattereth abroad the inhabitants thereof.
2 And it shall be, as with the people, so with the priest; as with the servant, so with his master; as with the maid, so with her mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the lender, so with the borrower; as with the taker of usury, so with the giver of usury to him.
3 The land shall be utterly emptied, and utterly spoiled: for the LORD hath spoken this word.
4 The earth mourneth and fadeth away, the world languisheth and fadeth away, the haughty people of the earth do languish.
5 The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.
6 Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate: therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men left.
7 The new wine mourneth, the vine languisheth, all the merryhearted do sigh.
8 The mirth of tabrets ceaseth, the noise of them that rejoice endeth, the joy of the harp ceaseth.
9 They shall not drink wine with a song; strong drink shall be bitter to them that drink it.
10 The city of confusion is broken down: every house is shut up, that no man may come in.
11 There is a crying for wine in the streets; all joy is darkened, the mirth of the land is gone.
12 In the city is left desolation, and the gate is smitten with destruction. (All whose treasures and happiness are laid up on earth, will soon be brought to want and misery. It is good to apply to ourselves what the Scripture says of the vanity and vexation of spirit which attend all things here below. Sin has turned the earth upside down; the earth is become quite different to man, from what it was when God first made it to be his habitation. It is, at the best, like a flower, which withers in the hands of those that please themselves with it, and lay it in their bosoms. The world we live in is a world of disappointment, a vale of tears; the children of men in it are but of few days, and full of trouble, See the power of God’s curse, how it makes all empty, and lays waste all ranks and conditions. Sin brings these calamities upon the earth; it is polluted by the sins of men, therefore it is made desolate by God’s judgments. Carnal joy will soon be at end, and the end of it is heaviness. God has many ways to imbitter wine and strong drink to those who love them; distemper of body, anguish of mind, and the ruin of the estate, will make strong drink bitter, and the delights of sense tasteless. Let men learn to mourn for sin, and rejoice in God; then no man, no event, can take their joy from them.)

13 When thus it shall be in the midst of the land among the people, there shall be as the shaking of an olive tree, and as the gleaning grapes when the vintage is done.
14 They shall lift up their voice, they shall sing for the majesty of the LORD, they shall cry aloud from the sea.
15 Wherefore glorify ye the LORD in the fires, even the name of the LORD God of Israel in the isles of the sea. (There shall be a remnant preserved from the general ruin, and it shall be a devout and pious remnant. These few are dispersed; like the gleanings of the olive tree, hid under the leaves. The Lord knows those that are his; the world does not. When the mirth of carnal worldlings ceases, the joy of the saints is as lively as ever, because the covenant of grace, the fountain of their comforts, and the foundation of their hopes, never fails. Those who rejoice in the Lord can rejoice in tribulation, and by faith may triumph when all about them are in tears. They encourage their fellow-sufferers to do likewise, even those who are in the furnace of affliction. Or, in the valleys, low, dark, miry places. In every fire, even the hottest, in every place, even the remotest, let us keep up our good thoughts of God. If none of these trials move us, then we glorify the Lord in the fires.)

16 From the uttermost part of the earth have we heard songs, even glory to the righteous. But I said, My leanness, my leanness, woe unto me! the treacherous dealers have dealt treacherously; yea, the treacherous dealers have dealt very treacherously.
17 Fear, and the pit, and the snare, are upon thee, O inhabitant of the earth.
18 And it shall come to pass, that he who fleeth from the noise of the fear shall fall into the pit; and he that cometh up out of the midst of the pit shall be taken in the snare: for the windows from on high are open, and the foundations of the earth do shake.
19 The earth is utterly broken down, the earth is clean dissolved, the earth is moved exceedingly.
20 The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage; and the transgression thereof shall be heavy upon it; and it shall fall, and not rise again.
21 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the LORD shall punish the host of the high ones that are on high, and the kings of the earth upon the earth.
22 And they shall be gathered together, as prisoners are gathered in the pit, and shall be shut up in the prison, and after many days shall they be visited.
23 Then the moon shall be confounded, and the sun ashamed, when the LORD of hosts shall reign in mount Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before his ancients gloriously. (Believers may be driven into the uttermost parts of the earth; but they are singing, not sighing. Here is terror to sinners; the prophet laments the miseries he saw breaking in like a torrent; and the small number of believers. He foresees that sin would abound. The meaning is plain, that evil pursues sinners. Unsteady, uncertain are all these things. Worldly men think to dwell in the earth as in a palace, as in a castle; but it shall be removed like a cottage, like a lodge put up for the night. It shall fall and not rise again; but there shall be new heavens and a new earth, in which shall dwell nothing but righteousness. Sin is a burden to the whole creation; it is a heavy burden, under which it groans now, and will sink at last. The high ones, that are puffed up with their grandeur, that think themselves out of the reach of danger, God will visit for their pride and cruelty. Let us judge nothing before the time, though some shall be visited. None in this world should be secure, though their condition be ever so prosperous; nor need any despair, though their condition be ever so deplorable. God will be glorified in all this. But the mystery of Providence is not yet finished. The ruin of the Redeemer’s enemies must make way for his kingdom, and then the Sun of Righteousness will appear in full glory. Happy are those who take warning by the sentence against others; every impenitent sinner will sink under his transgression, and rise no more, while believers enjoy everlasting bliss.)

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Posted by on June 27, 2017 in God's Truth

 

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In the Hollow of Thy Hand

Many who know me know that my greatest gift from the Lord is His calling me to be the prayer warrior that I am today. To me it is a great honor and privilege to spend time in conversation with my Master, lifting others up to Him. That He would even consider a sinner such as I to come into His presence is a mystery to me, but while I am there those thoughts vanish as I attempt to lay my worries and concerns at His feet. I have learned from the storms God has allowed in my own life that the prayers of others have been a reason for the peace and comfort I have experienced in the hollow of His hands.

In that quiet, prayerful time this morning several dear sisters in the Lord came to mind, the first being my Pastor’s wife. She was paralyzed in a bad car accident 3 years ago yesterday. I can’t help but think about how hard it must be for her since this accident. Just a young woman in her 30’s with 4 young children. My heart aches for her at the thought of how very drastically every area of her life has changed since that horrible accident. Yet, she is a wonderful example to others as she gets up every day and continues on in her work for the Lord. I look at myself and wonder if I would be able to stay so strong in the Lord if I were faced with the trials she has faced and will face to the end of each day. I suppose it is true what they say that “We don’t really know how we would react in a certain situation unless it actually happened to us.” I believe that God places an empathy for others on our hearts when these things happen. I continue to pray and ask my Lord to heal this precious sister and let her walk again, but I can’t help but wonder how would I become if I were in her shoes. Would I keep on keeping on like she does, staying in church and serving our Lord when many of us would give in and say, “No, I can’t today. I just don’t feel like it.” Perhaps she knows that we truly do gain strength in times of trial when we choose to stay close to our brothers and sisters in Christ. We so need the Godly support that they have to offer. I wonder if she knows the huge difference her example has made to so many.

Another sweet sister who was laid on my heart this morning recently had her 30-year-old son go to be with Jesus through a tragic accident. I cannot even imagine what she faces each day as she awakes and realizes that she will not be hearing from her sweet boy, or by chance run into him in her travels around town. Yes, she must take some comfort in knowing that she will join him with Jesus one day, but until then, there is a great storm to get through here in our world. And again, here is a Godly woman who continues on sharing Jesus as she visits with others who have visited our church, encouraging them to know God and live for Him. I have a young son, and as I have tried to put myself in her shoes, the hurt in my heart just thinking about it is too great for me to stay there for any amount of time. I have a sweet momma and daddy in Heaven now, and of course several other family members, and two best friends over the past several years who have also went to be with Jesus. The thought that Heaven is indeed looking sweeter to me each year that God gives me on this earth comes to my mind more and more. So, I know that pain of losing a loved one, but there is something so very different about the thought of having to say good bye to a child I have raised and has been a part of my life for many years, unimaginable. That is just not the natural order of things. Oh well, I digress, as usual in these things, but my point is that I feel so very blessed to call this lady my dear friend. What a great example she is to me as I watch her stay close with God as she goes through this storm.

What a great example and encouragement these women and others like them are to so many of us, as we watch them trusting in God’s healing, in His time, as they lean on Him “Til the Storm Passes By.” They know that The Master is Nigh! None of us can get through this life’s storms without Him.

The song “Til the Storm Passes By” was the song for today in my morning devotion. How very fitting for each and every one of us.

 
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Posted by on July 6, 2016 in Godly Women

 

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Are We Preparing for our Service in Heaven?

I have to wonder, with the state of affairs in the U.S., how many of those who claim to be children of the one and only God Jehovah, truly understand that we will give account to Him for what we have or have not done for the cause of Christ after accepting Him as Lord, and that how we live our lives in this short time on earth is to prepare us for eternity in Heaven.

Matthew 25

1 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.
2 And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.
3 They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them:
4 But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.
5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.
6 And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.
7 Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
8 And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.
9 But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.
10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.
11 Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.
12 But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.
13 Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.
14 For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods.
15 And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey.
16 Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with the same, and made them other five talents.
17 And likewise he that had received two, he also gained other two.
18 But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord’s money.
19 After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them.
20 And so he that had received five talents came and brought other five talents, saying, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more.
21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
22 He also that had received two talents came and said, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents beside them.
23 His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
24 Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed:
25 And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.
26 His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed:
27 Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury.
28 Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents.
29 For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.
30 And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:
32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

 
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Posted by on April 7, 2016 in God's Truth

 

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“Fervent Heat”

Thank you Lord for this Baptist Bread Devotional! And thank you Pastor/Dr. Steve Harness for these great Godly words of wisdom!

II Peter 3:10 “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

Believers are looking for the return of Christ, the Blessed Hope, for the Rapture, when Christ takes His own out of this Jesus-rejecting world. Once the Rapture takes place, the world will follow antichrist, and the Lord will begin judging the earth in what is called the Tribulation.

When God’s plan for the world is complete, the earth will be destroyed. This is what is being referenced in this passage in II Peter. Not too long ago, I was able to visit two volcanoes. What a thrill to see this amazingly powerful natural phenomenon. The destructive force of volcanoes and the lava they spew are incredible. Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines erupted in 1991. The effects are still seen over twenty years later! When the Bible talks about fervent heat and the elements dissolving away, it is speaking of an event more powerful than the eruption of a volcano.

II Peter 3:12 also mentions the melting with fervent heat, then verse 13 says, “Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.” Verse 11 tells us that in the meantime, while waiting for Christ, and later the new Heaven and new earth, that we are to carefully live holy lives before the Lord. Check your life and check your motives today. –Steve Harness

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2016 in God's Truth

 

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Do You Know Him Today!?

Please Don’t Turn Him Away!

Recognize your condition – “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23 No one is good enough to go to Heaven on his own merit. No matter how much good we do, we still fall short.

Realize that there is a penalty for sin – “For the wages of sin is death…” Romans 6:23 Just as there are wages for good, there is punishment for wrong. The penalty for our sin is eternal death in a place called Hell.

Believe that Christ died for you – “But God commendeth His love for us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8 Christ’s great love for us was shown when He died on the cross to pay our debt to sin.

Trust Christ alone as your Saviour. “For the wages of sin is death; BUT THE GIFT OF GOD IS ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD.” Romans 6:23; and “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Romans 10:13 Everlasting life is a gift purchased by the blood of Jesus and offered freely to those who call upon Him by faith.

“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” Romans 10:9-10

If you do not remember a time in your life when you asked Jesus to be your Saviour and Lord, please do so now and let me know so I can pray for you.

Pray now and confess that you are a sinner, and ask God to save you, and believe that you will receive Christ as your Saviour!

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Posted by on September 23, 2015 in God's Love

 

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