Minister's blog

by Terry Cooper


a word from terry

about the lie

monday, september 20, 2021

If a lie is an untruth, then there must be a truth. There can’t be an untruth without a truth. To speak against or deny the truth is to be a liar. The Bible tells us that its impossible for God to lie because He is Truth, the source of all truth.


Hebrews 6:18-19 (NLT)

18 So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us.

19 This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary.


God’s promises are Truth and Believers (Christians) hold onto that truth with confidence and hope because we know that God cannot lie. God’s Word is Truth. Believing the Truth of God’s Word gives us a confident hope that anchors our soul in times of trouble and fear.


Jesus came to the earth and declared that He was God in the flesh. Jesus came from Heaven to reveal the Truth. Jesus said that He was the Truth and the only way to experience life with God (John 14:6). After revealing Himself to be the Truth, Jesus revealed the liar, the source of the untruth.


John 8:42-47 (NLT)

42 Jesus told them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, because I have come to you from God. I am not here on my own, but he sent me.

43 Why can’t you understand what I am saying? It’s because you can’t even hear me!

44 For you are the children of your father the devil, and you love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer from the beginning. He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies.

45 So when I tell the truth, you just naturally don’t believe me!

46 Which of you can truthfully accuse me of sin? And since I am telling you the truth, why don’t you believe me?

47 Anyone who belongs to God listens gladly to the words of God. But you don’t listen because you don’t belong to God.”


God the Father has revealed the Truth through Jesus Christ the Son. There is a liar that denies the Truth of God and speaks lies into those living on the earth. He is the devil or Satan. He was the serpent in Genesis. He is the other voice, the other word that spoke in the Garden of Eden. He is the liar. And what did the liar say to Even in his attempt to deny the Truth?


God told Adam and Eve that sin would bring certain death…an end to life. God cannot lie. It’s impossible for God to tell a lie. Sin would bring certain death to anyone who commits it. The serpent told Eve a lie, “You will not die”. It’s a lie! Eve died!


Sin brought death to the world. A lie from the liar brought death to the world. That’s why the Truth came. That’s why Jesus came…to reveal the Truth. Jesus came to tell the truth about the liar. Don’t listen to the lies of Satan. Sin will bring certain death. Sin separates us from God.


Jesus came to set us free from the lie by telling us the Truth about sin and death. Jesus’ death on the cross was God’s way, the only way to atone for the sins of all mankind. A way, the only way to overcome sin and death. Death would defeat death. Truth would defeat the lie. The death of Jesus would overcome the lie of Satan.


Now, we have a choice. Its our time to choose. Adam and Eve chose (truth vs. the lie). Now it’s our time to choose. Why do people die? What is the cause of death? Is it sin? Is there a cure for death? Can sin be forgiven? What would happen to death if our sin was forgiven? What is the Truth about sin and death?


1 John 1:8-10 (NLT)

8 If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth.

9 But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.

10 If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts.


Then you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free (John 8:32).


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about the sleepers

monday, september 13, 2021

The Bible refers to different kinds of sleep and different kinds of sleepers. God put Adam into a deep sleep and removed one of his ribs (Genesis 2:21). Abraham was placed in a deep sleep when God entered into His eternal blood covenant with him (Genesis 15:12). Jacob was in a deep sleep when he saw the stairway of heaven and realized that He had encountered God in that place (Genesis 28:16).


All of these men experienced God in the midst of their sleep. Their supernatural sleep event was both physical and spiritual. They all woke with the knowledge that they had encountered God in a special way. God gives a spiritual sleep and a physical sleep; both are from God.


God gives physical sleep to our natural human bodies so that we might find a time of rest and a time of refreshing during the night. Without physical sleep, our human bodies would grow weak and eventually die. However, too much sleep has a negative effect. There must be a balance of the right amount of physical sleep for the human body. Our physical bodies need physical sleep to maintain our physical health.


But what about our spiritual body? What about our spiritual health? Does the soul need rest and a time to be restored/refreshed and what would that look like? King David’s famous Psalm 23 says “He restores my soul”. But how? How does the soul get rest and what would revive/restore/refresh the soul of a sleeper?


Psalm 19:7 (NLT)

7 The instructions of the LORD are perfect, reviving the soul. The decrees of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple.


The physical body needs a time of rest and refreshing and that comes to us while we sleep. But too much sleep will have the opposite affect on the physical body. It will become even more tired and more sleepy as it grows weaker and weaker.


The same is true with the spiritual body, the soul of man. King David (Psalm 19) declares that the Word of the Lord revives the soul. The Word of the Lord awakens the soul of man. Without the Word of the Lord, the soul will grow weaker and weaker and eventually fall into a spiritual sleep that leads to spiritual death, eternal spiritual death.


The Apostle Paul wrote the church at Rome and gave them a warning about falling asleep spiritually. Paul said it was urgent for the church to wake up (spiritually) because their time was running out. Wake up, return to the Word of the Lord and let it revive your sleepy soul.


Romans 13:11-14 (NLT)

11 This is all the more urgent, for you know how late it is; time is running out. Wake up, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.

12 The night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. So remove your dark deeds like dirty clothes, and put on the shining armor of right living.

13 Because we belong to the day, we must live decent lives for all to see. Don’t participate in the darkness of wild parties and drunkenness, or in sexual promiscuity and immoral living, or in quarreling and jealousy.

14 Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires.


Can you see the connection between the spiritual and the physical in God’s Word? The Word of the Lord revives the soul. Wake up church! Jesus’ parable of the 10 virgins/bridesmaids (Matthew 25:1) declared that all 10 had fallen asleep, but 5 of them woke up from their spiritual sleep and trimmed their spiritual lamps and made themselves ready for the Bridegroom. Wake up church…the night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. Wake up sleepers!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry about

the feast of trumpets

tuesday, september 7, 2021

Today, the Jews around the world are celebrating the Feast of Trumpets or Rosh Hashanah. Today is the first day of the Jewish New Year 5782 (5782 years since God created the earth). It is customary for Jews to confess their sins and repent of those sins before God...before the New Year begins so they can begin the new year with a clean heart toward God.


I was watching a video recently of one of those Jewish gatherings at Jerusalem’s Western Wall where thousands and thousands of Jews were confessing and repenting of their sins (before Rosh Hashanah). I was moved by the scene of so many people crying out to God.


Ten days after today’s Feast of Trumpets comes the highest of all Jewish Holy days...the Day of Atonement...or Yom Kippur. In the time of Moses, the High Priest would enter the Most Holy Place of God’s presence (behind the veil) and offer a blood sacrifice to atone for the sins of the people of Israel. The ten days between the Feast of Trumpets and the Day of Atonement are called the Days of Awe. It is the time of spiritual preparation...when the people return to God through repentance. Repentance is the physical and spiritual act of returning to God.


Isaiah 30:15 (NLT)

15 This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: “Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved. In quietness and confidence is your strength. But you would have none of it.


These are called the Days of Awe because they will determine your position with God in relation to the Day of Atonement. Those who have confessed and repented of their sins will find peace with God on the Day of Atonement, but those who refuse to repent...will find His divine judgment instead of divine forgiveness and peace.


Jeremiah 3:21-22 (NLT)

21 Voices are heard high on the windswept mountains, the weeping and pleading of Israel’s people. For they have chosen crooked paths and have forgotten the LORD their God.

22 “My wayward children,” says the LORD, “come back to me, and I will heal your wayward hearts.” “Yes, we’re coming,” the people reply, “for you are the LORD our God.


Most of the Jews worshipping at the Western Wall in Jerusalem this week are still waiting for their Messiah. God is currently prophetically regathering them into the land of Israel from the four corners of the earth, but most of them still don’t believe in Jesus as Messiah/Christ. The Jewish population in Israel has increased from 700,000 in 1948 to over 7 million today.


We (Christians) believe the Jewish Messiah-Jesus has already come to the earth…to give His life as the atoning sacrifice for our sins on the cross and He is coming again soon. We believe Jesus was the Messiah/Christ and that He was and is our Day of Atonement. In fact, Jesus was the literal fulfillment of all the spring feasts/festivals of Israel that were revealed by God to Moses.


1. Jesus was crucified and died on the Jewish feast of Passover (John 18:28, 1 Cor. 5:7)

2. Jesus was buried on the Jewish feast of Unleavened Bread (John 6:47-51, Acts 2:29-32)

3. Jesus rose from the dead on the Jewish feast of First Fruits (1 Corinthians 15:20-23)

4. Jesus came to the earth in the form and person of the Holy Spirit on the Jewish Feast of Pentecost (Acts 1-2)


Those are the four spring feasts of Israel, and they are followed by three fall feasts that begin today with the Feast of Trumpets. There is a summertime “gap” in the center of the 7 Jewish Feasts. Will God use His Son, in some way, to fulfill these fall feasts? How will Jesus fulfill the next three Jewish feasts/festivals, and what about the summertime gap?


5. The Feast of Trumpets (Rosh Hashana)

6. The Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur)

7. The Feast of Tabernacles (Succot)


Nobody knows for sure, but I believe Jesus will literally fulfill these remaining three feasts/festivals in some way. I believe the summertime gap (between Pentecost and Trumpets) is the time of the Church, the time when God has opened up His salvation to the Gentile world. The Apostle Paul reveals this wonderful mystery to the Gentile Church in Rome and Colossae:


Romans 11:25 (NLT)

25 I want you to understand this mystery, dear brothers and sisters, so that you will not feel proud about yourselves. Some of the people of Israel have hard hearts, but this will last only until the full number of Gentiles comes to Christ.


Colossians 1:26-27 (NLT)

26 This message was kept secret for centuries and generations past, but now it has been revealed to God’s people. 27 For God wanted them to know that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory.


So, what does this all mean to the church in these last days? We should confess our sins before God and repent by turning or returning to Him. We don’t have to travel to the Western Wall of Jerusalem to do this. By God’s grace, we can do this anytime through genuine repentance and placing our faith in the name of Jesus Christ.


We live in the Days of Awe, and we await the last trumpet and that final Day of Atonement when Jesus will come and tabernacle with (dwell with) each of us who have received His atoning blood sacrifice through faith.


Today, I join with the Jewish people around the world to celebrate the Feast of Trumpets. I am NOT waiting for the first coming of the Jewish Messiah. I am waiting for Jesus’ second coming, and I am waiting for the sound of a trumpet.


1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 (NLT)

15 We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians who have died will rise from their graves.

17 Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.

18 So encourage each other with these words.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about the time of testing

monday, august 30, 2021

The New Living Translation uses a phrase, “barely saved”. That phrase troubles and convicts me. The NASB translates it with, “it is with difficulty”. The NIV uses, “it is hard”. We must examine the context of this troubling phrase to understand its meaning. The Apostle Peter is writing to the suffering and persecuted church. He is encouraging them to stay strong in their faith in the midst of great suffering and rejection by the worldly culture of that time.


1 Peter 4:16-19 (NLT)

16 But it is no shame to suffer for being a Christian. Praise God for the privilege of being called by his name!

17 For the time has come for judgment, and it must begin with God’s household. And if judgment begins with us, what terrible fate awaits those who have never obeyed God’s Good News?

18 And also, “If the righteous are barely saved, what will happen to godless sinners?”

19 So if you are suffering in a manner that pleases God, keep on doing what is right, and trust your lives to the God who created you, for he will never fail you.


Peter is revealing the time of God’s judgment and that this judgment would begin with God’s household, the church. That is the context of the “barely saved” statement. What does that reveal to you today about standing firm under the opposition and persecution from the unbelieving world?


It is clear throughout the Scriptures that suffering, and hardship is our time of testing. God allows testing and even initiates a time of testing. His purpose in testing us is to make us overcomers. Overcomers because we have passed the time of testing by remaining faithful during the test.


God tested Abraham when He told Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac on the altar. This test must have cause great suffering in the heart of Abraham. In that test, Abraham had to personally choose to believe God or deny God. Abraham passed that test and became the father of our faith. Abraham became God’s friend and our pattern of what it means to be an overcomer, through faith.


Peter is telling the suffering church that its an honor and privilege to suffer for the cause of Christ, to patiently endure the time of testing. Some may suffer from external sources, like the rejection of the unbelieving world. Others may suffer from within…with doubts and fears about the faithfulness of God and the truth of His Holy Word. In either case, the test is our opportunity to become overcomers and find victory by continuing in our steadfast faith in the promises of God through Jesus Christ, our Lord.


But what if you fail that test…does it matter? This is the context and warning of Peter to the church. Peter tells us that this judgment of God will begin in the church. It begins in our time of testing. God wants to use the time of testing to purify and strengthen our faith, but what if you fail that test? Does it matter?


“If the righteous are barely saved, what will happen to godless sinners?” It’s hard, it is with difficulty and opposition that we find this lifesaving righteousness of Christ. It is with great external opposition and from within our own self-centered hearts that we must demonstrate this righteous faith revealed through Abraham.


Jesus describes the testing as a time when we are required to stand up for His Name and His Word/Truth…no matter what it costs. Remember, the opposition will be external and also internal.


Matthew 10:32-34 (NLT)

32 “Everyone who acknowledges me publicly here on earth, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. 33 But everyone who denies me here on earth, I will also deny before my Father in heaven. 34 “Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword.


The battle of our time is for the Name and the Word, and by the way, they are the same person-Jesus! The Word became flesh (John 1:14). The name of Jesus and the message of Jesus will be rejected by the world and that becomes our time of testing. What will we do in our time of testing?


This is a spiritual war (I came not to bring peace, but a sword), and this war will intensify as we approach the return of Christ for His Church. Jesus gave a message to the Church at Philadelphia in the Revelation. There was a specific reward offered to the church that would overcome the time of testing by holding fast to the Name and the Word.


Revelation 3:8 (NIV)

8 I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name….10 Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test those who live on the earth.

11 I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown.


For the time has come for judgment, and it must begin with God’s household. And if judgment begins with us, what terrible fate awaits those who have never obeyed God’s Good News?

And also, “If the righteous are barely saved, what will happen to godless sinners?”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the burden of truth

monday, August 23, 2021

The Apostle Paul writes a timeless letter to the church at Corinth and to the church of today. We call that letter “2nd Corinthians”. In that letter Paul reveals the personal suffering and hardship that he experienced as a follower of Christ. Five verses that describe the incredible physical suffering in his calling to follow Jesus.


2 Corinthians 11:23-27 (NLT)

[I have] been put in prison more often, been whipped times without number, and faced death again and again.

24 Five different times the Jewish leaders gave me thirty-nine lashes.

25 Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea.

26 I have traveled on many long journeys. I have faced danger from rivers and from robbers. I have faced danger from my own people, the Jews, as well as from the Gentiles. I have faced danger in the cities, in the deserts, and on the seas. And I have faced danger from men who claim to be believers but are not.

27 I have worked hard and long, enduring many sleepless nights. I have been hungry and thirsty and have often gone without food. I have shivered in the cold, without enough clothing to keep me warm.


The physical suffering of Paul is difficult for most of us to comprehend. The modern American Church has never faced that type of physical suffering. I wonder how many of us would be able to continue our walk of faith in Christ if we were asked to endure such physical suffering.


But that’s not the point of my letter today. It’s the next verse that shakes me. It’s the next verse in Paul’s letter that causes me the greatest concern for the church today. The Burden of Truth.


2 Corinthians 11:28 (NLT)

28 Then, besides all this, I have the daily burden of my concern for all the churches.


Paul suffered physically for the cause of Christ, but he also carried another burden, a heavy burden. The Burden of Truth. The Church was called to carry the Burden of Truth into the world. Paul was uniquely aware that the unbelieving world would oppose the Truth of the Gospel, making it a burden that the church must carry. How many churches would survive the Burden of Truth?


The Burden of Truth doesn’t necessarily bring physical suffering or hardship. The Burden of Truth brings a different kind of suffering and hardship…the burden of rejection. The world that has rejected Jesus will also reject the Truth of Jesus’ message. This rejection will include Jesus’ church. The burden of being rejected by the world is also a heavy burden. Who can stand under this burden…to be rejected by the world?


1 Corinthians 1:18 (NLT)

18 The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.


I have this same burden for the church today. I’m watching many churches abandon the Burden of Truth so they might not suffer the burden of being rejected by the world. The American Church has not had to suffer physically as followers of Christ. At least, not yet. But the American Church is currently suffering from the Burden of Truth. The burden of being rejected by the culture because of weight of the Truth. The Truth is indeed heavy.


The Apostle Paul had encountered the risen Christ. He was told in advance that he would suffer much in this calling from Jesus. Paul knew that the unbelieving world’s opposition to the Truth would be real and powerful. Paul also knew that it would get harder and harder to carry the Burden of Truth into the unbelieving culture in the last days before the return of Christ. Paul writes an urgent letter to the church about this Burden of Truth…revealing the heavy burden for the Church in the last days.


2 Timothy 4:1-4 (NLT)

1 I solemnly urge you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus, who will someday judge the living and the dead when he appears to set up his Kingdom:

2 Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching.

3 For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear.

4 They will reject the truth and chase after myths.


I, like the Apostle Paul feel a great burden for all the churches in America. I worry that many are falling away from the Truth. Many are surrendering the Burden of Truth in their attempt to avoid the rejection of the culture. This is a great tragedy that will end in great disaster for the unfaithful church.


Let there be no doubt…this is a spiritual war, and the spirit of antichrist is working hard to stop the church from completing the calling of Christ. Our calling is to carry the Burden of Truth to the world…no matter how heavy this burden might become in these last days.


2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 (NLT)

9 This man [Antichrist] will come to do the work of Satan with counterfeit power and signs and miracles. 10 He will use every kind of evil deception to fool those on their way to destruction, because they refuse to love and accept the truth that would save them.

11 So God will cause them to be greatly deceived, and they will believe these lies.

12 Then they will be condemned for enjoying evil rather than believing the truth.


The time for the church to stand on the Truth is now. The Church is called by our King and Savior to be the Light of the World. We do not hide the light…we shine the light so that others might know the saving power of Jesus Christ. We must carry the Burden of Truth while there is still time. We must carry this Burden of Truth while it is still day, before the great darkness comes upon those who have rejected the Truth.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the wedding

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Have you ever noticed how many times the Bible uses “bride and bridegroom” to describe a believer’s relationship to God?


Isaiah 62:3-4 (NLT) A Future Prophesy to Israel

3 The LORD will hold you in his hand for all to see— a splendid crown in the hand of God.

4 Never again will you be called “The Forsaken City” or “The Desolate Land.” Your new name will be “The City of God’s Delight” and “The Bride of God,” for the LORD delights in you and will claim you as his bride.


2 Corinthians 11:2 (NLT) The Apostle Paul’s description of the church

2 For I am jealous for you with the jealousy of God himself. I promised you as a pure bride to one husband—Christ.


Matthew 25:1 (NLT) A Parable of Jesus

“The Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom.


There is one Scripture example I want to focus on today. This one is from Jesus and it describes a spiritual and physical reality for the church that is being made ready for the wedding feast of the Lamb in the Kingdom of Heaven.


John 14:1-3 (NLT)

1 “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. 2 There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? 3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.


Jesus is the Bridegroom in this scene and He is going away, to the Father’s house, to prepare a place for His bride, the church. In fact, the entire Gospel of Christ could be described by and compared to a traditional Jewish marriage event.


The Jewish man comes to the woman and proposes to her...an offer to become his bride. If she accepts the proposal, the offer to be wed...the groom returns to his home (his father’s house) to prepare a place for her and the engagement period begins. Jesus is the Bridegroom and He has made an offer to mankind, specifically the church, to become His bride. The church is those who have received this wedding invitation and prepared themselves to meet the Bridegroom. Jesus has gone away to His Father’s house to prepare a place for His future bride, the church.


Jesus said, “I am going to prepare a place for you”. We are living in the time of separation, between the proposal and the wedding. We are living under the promise of the Bridegroom...that He will indeed return for His bride when everything is ready. We are living in the “engagement” period...the time in which the bride and the Bridegroom must remain faithful to each other while they wait for the wedding day to arrive...and the Bridegroom is always faithful!


This is where it get’s interesting. We are the bride of Christ, but we must wait for the wedding day. We were born into our first house, this present earth. The second house is currently being prepared for the bride by the Bridegroom. The second house is a “new creation”, a “new and eternal home” and it will not be like the one we were originally born into. This new home will be permanent and the bride will never be separated from the Bridegroom in this new home. This eternal marriage is a mystery to unbelievers, but it’s not a mystery to those who have received and accepted the wedding invitation from the Bridegroom. Read how the Apostle Paul describes this revealed mystery...


1 Corinthians 2:6-9 (NLT)

6 Yet when I am among mature believers, I do speak with words of wisdom, but not the kind of wisdom that belongs to this world or to the rulers of this world, who are soon forgotten.

7 No, the wisdom we speak of is the mystery of God—his plan that was previously hidden, even though he made it for our ultimate glory before the world began.

8 But the rulers of this world have not understood it; if they had, they would not have crucified our glorious Lord.

9 That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”


So, what do you think this new house is going to be like, the one that Jesus has gone away to prepare for His bride? Where do you think the Apostle Paul is today, right now? Do you think Paul and other deceased believers are in the presence of the Bridegroom right now? Do you think the Bridegroom-Jesus is and will be faithful to His bride the church? Maybe the bigger question is this...will the church be faithful to the Bridegroom as she awaits the appointed day of the wedding?


Idolatry is unfaithfulness. Idolatry is to choose another lover, a substitute. Idolatry is spiritual adultery. Idolatry is to refuse the wedding offer from the Bridegroom or to cheat during the engagement period of waiting. I am moved by the letter that Jesus told John to write to the church (the bride) in Revelation.


Revelation 2:4-5 (NIV)

4 Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love.

5 Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.


The Bridegroom is coming...that’s the call of Matthew chapter 25...


Matthew 25:6 (NLT)

6 “At midnight they were roused by the shout, ‘Look, the bridegroom is coming! Come out and meet him!’


Will Jesus find His bride faithful? Will Jesus find His bride ready and waiting? Or will He find His bride distracted, and unfaithful, living in spiritual adultery? Yes, it’s been a very long engagement period and yes there are many offers of love from this present world, but only One has gone to the Father’s house to prepare a place for the bride. Only One!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the bible

monday, August 2, 2021

When I consider the level of chaos and despair in the world today, and yes, even inside church, I conclude that it could be summed up with one point. The world has abandoned the Bible as the Word of God. The world has rejected this independent source of truth and authority that once stood as the framework of many world cultures.


This departure from the Word of God is not new. It’s been the struggle of mankind since the Garden of Eden. There were two voices of authority in the Garden. One voice declared a warning, “Do this and you will die”. The other voice rejected that warning and produced an alternate truth that was actually a deadly lie, “You will not surely die…you can be your own god”.


Here we stand, some 6,000 years later and those two voices are still speaking. One proclaims the truth and offers life…the other perverts the truth and offers death. And how can we hear and know the voice of truth today? How does God reveal His Truth and The Way of Life to the world in these last days?


Hebrews 1:1-2 (NLT)

1 Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets.

2 And now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he created the universe.


Jesus, the Son of God is the Word of God. In these last days God, the Father is speaking to the world through Jesus, the Word. In the New Testament, the Bible reveals the teachings of Jesus, and the Bible records the way of truth and life as revealed to the Apostles by the Holy Spirit of Christ. The Words are inspired by God, not man.


The Bible offers truth that leads to life, but much of the world now mocks the Bible and its revealed truth. This is the battle of all mankind. Which voice will lead us to life and which voice will lead us into death?


The Prophet Isaiah reveals the outcome of a people that reject the Word of God. Woe and great sorrow await those who reject the Word of God and create their alternate truth, becoming gods unto themselves. This is the deadly lie leads to the rejection of the Royal Son of God.


Isaiah 5:20-21 (NLT)

20 What sorrow for those who say that evil is good and good is evil, that dark is light and light is dark, that bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter.

21 What sorrow for those who are wise in their own eyes and think themselves so clever.


You might ask…how is it possible to turn good into evil and light into darkness? By rejecting the truth about the very source of good and light as revealed through the Bible. The Bible, the Word, is not just language on a page. The Word of God is alive with the power of the Holy Spirit, and the Word of God is the Son of God through which the message of life and truth is revealed to mankind in these last days.


Isaiah revealed Israel’s struggle with this truth even before Jesus’ first appearing. The world still struggles today. Which voice will they follow? Whose word will they believe? Woe and great sorrow await the outcome of this eternal question.


Isaiah 5:24-25 (NLT)

24 Therefore, just as fire licks up stubble and dry grass shrivels in the flame, so their roots will rot and their flowers wither. For they have rejected the law of the LORD of Heaven’s Armies; they have despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.

25 That is why the LORD’s anger burns against his people, and why he has raised his fist to crush them. The mountains tremble, and the corpses of his people litter the streets like garbage. But even then the LORD’s anger is not satisfied. His fist is still poised to strike!


The Apostle Paul tells us that there will be a great falling away from the Word of God before Jesus returns for the church (2 Thessalonians 2:3). That prophesied truth, as revealed to the Apostle Paul is indeed unstoppable. Are we witnessing that great falling away now, in our generation?


Today, I challenge the church to hold tightly to the Word of God, the Bible. Write these words of life and truth on your heart and allow God to transform you by the power of the Word. And above all else know this…and now in these last days, God has spoken to us through His Son-Jesus. You must listen to Him, or you will surely die.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen.


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the apocalypse

monday, july 26, 2021

I’d like to begin today by asking you to read the following verse from the Book of Revelation.


Revelation 13:1 (NLT)

1 Then I saw a beast rising up out of the sea. It had seven heads and ten horns, with ten crowns on its horns. And written on each head were names that blasphemed God.


Does that verse scare you? Think of this verse as a literal event in the future...does this verse scare you? This verse and many like it are from the Book of Revelation. Do you know what the word “Revelation” means? The word “revelation” which is the translation of the Greek word “apokalypsis” or “apocalypse”. When we think of the word “apocalypse” we think of something awful or tragic...a cataclysmic end of the world event or something like that. However, the word simply means...the uncovering, the unveiling.


I’ve heard people use “apocalypse” to describe horrible things, but I’ve never heard anyone use the word “apocalypse” to describe something wonderful. So, let me ask again, does the Book of Revelation, the unveiling of God’s future plan scare you? The Book of Revelation is actually a lifting of the veil, an unveiling. This unveiling is not intended by God to scare people, but to uncover and reveal the truth about the future so that everyone can prepare for it.


I have no idea how many wedding ceremonies I have conducted over the years, but I can tell you the highlight of all of them. The highlight is when the bride walks through the door with a veil over her face and walks toward the groom. It’s at that point that I ask everyone to stand in expectation as the bride prepares to unveil and reveal herself to the groom.


The same Book of Revelation that describes the beast rising up out of the sea describes this...


Revelation 19:6-7 (NIV)

6 Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting: "Hallelujah! For our Lord God Almighty reigns.

7 Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.


The Bible is clear on this point. Jesus is the Bridegroom and the Church is the Bride of Christ. The Apocalypse (the Book of Revelation) reveals the unveiling of the bride as she meets the Bridegroom. There are shouts of “Hallelujah” in this scene, not screams of fear. So, let me ask again...Does this unveiling of the future scare you? It wouldn’t if you were the bride and Jesus was the groom.


The veil separates, and for now there is a separation between the Bride and the Bridegroom, but one day, maybe soon, that veil will be forever lifted, and we will see Him face to face.


Revelation 22:3-5 (NLT)

3 No longer will there be a curse upon anything. For the throne of God and of the Lamb will be there, and his servants will worship him.

4 And they will see his face, and his name will be written on their foreheads.

5 And there will be no night there—no need for lamps or sun—for the Lord God will shine on them. And they will reign forever and ever.


Who would be afraid of this apocalypse...this unveiling? The curse is gone. Death is gone forever and we will stand with Jesus before His glorious throne. We will see Jesus without the veil and the light of His glory will never again be affected by darkness.


Rejoice today...you Bride of Christ because the apocalypse is coming. Yes, the unveiling is coming and the bride has made herself ready for the wedding.


Revelation 19:6-7 (NLT)

“Praise the LORD! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.

7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and let us give honor to him. For the time has come for the wedding feast of the Lamb, and his bride has prepared herself.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen!


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the pardon

monday, july 12, 2021

I grew up hearing the statement “pardon me”, or “I beg your pardon”. I think this might be a specific term for people of the south, but it was very familiar to my youth. The word “pardon” is used in our southern vocabulary as a request for forgiveness for a fault, offense or discourtesy. “I beg your pardon” was our request to the other person to not hold our offense against us. It was an often used and polite term that showed humble respect to the offended party.


The Bible also uses the word “pardon”. The third Biblical application of the word “pardon” appears in the Book of Numbers when Moses and the children of Israel were positioned just outside the Promised Land. God had prepared everything. God had sent the enslaved people of Israel a deliverer named Moses and God used Moses to lead the people all the way up to the border of the Promised Land. Everything was ready. The people were finally free from Egyptian bondage and their homeland was right in front of them. That is, until their leaders took a vote.


Moses had sent 12 spies over into the Promised Land to see what God had in store for them. The 12 spies came back and took a vote. The vote was overwhelmingly against God and His promise to give them victory and possession of the Promised Land. The vote was 10 to 2. Democracy sounds like a great idea, until the majority turns away from the promises of God.


That event was the third time you will see the word “pardon” in the Bible…after the vote…after the majority voted to turn away from the promises of God. Do you know when the first time the word “pardon” was used? This is the important part of today’s story. The Lord warned the people in advance, before they voted, He warned them.


Exodus 23:20-22 (NASB)

20 "Behold, I am going to send an angel before you to guard you along the way and to bring you into the place which I have prepared.

21 "Be on your guard before him and obey his voice; do not be rebellious toward him, for he will not pardon your transgression, since My name is in him.

22 "But if you truly obey his voice and do all that I say, then I will be an enemy to your enemies and an adversary to your adversaries.


The children of Israel voted against God. Even after they were warned that He would not pardon their rebellion, they voted against God. The vote was 10 to 2. The majority had rejected God’s promises to personally deliver them into the land of milk and honey. So, what happened after the vote?


God became very angry with the vote and those who joined in this rebellion against His Word. God told Moses that He was going to destroy them all and raise up a new generation of people that would trust, obey and follow Him. It’s at this point that Moses, who is a preview or shadow of the Messiah-Jesus, stood between God and the people and asked God to “pardon” them.


Numbers 14:17-20 (NLT)

17 “Please, Lord, prove that your power is as great as you have claimed. For you said,

18 ‘The LORD is slow to anger and filled with unfailing love, forgiving every kind of sin and rebellion. But he does not excuse the guilty. He lays the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations.’

19 In keeping with your magnificent, unfailing love, please pardon the sins of this people, just as you have forgiven them ever since they left Egypt.”

20 Then the LORD said, “I will pardon them as you have requested.


The vote was overwhelming, 10 to 2. That’s 83% against God and 17% for God. Even with that vote, Moses had the audacity to ask God to pardon the people. God’s wonderful love and mercy gave a pardon to the people. He was not going to destroy all of them, even though the majority had voted against Him and rebelled against His Word.


This marvelous pardon of God was followed by another promise of God, but this one was not a pardon. This was the announcement of His divine judgment. This is the very next verse, after the pardon of God.


Numbers 14:21-23 (NLT)

21 But as surely as I live, and as surely as the earth is filled with the LORD’s glory,

22 not one of these people will ever enter that land. They have all seen my glorious presence and the miraculous signs I performed both in Egypt and in the wilderness, but again and again they have tested me by refusing to listen to my voice.

23 They will never even see the land I swore to give their ancestors. None of those who have treated me with contempt will ever see it.


Democracy is a wonderful thing until the majority turns its back on God. But even then…never forget about the two that voted with God. Joshua and Caleb refused to go along with the majority and they stood with Moses and Aaron to receive the pardon of God. Joshua and Caleb did take possession of the Promised Land.


Today, we stand just outside our Promised Land of God. Heaven’s Coming! Every promise of God belongs to those who will hear the Word of God and put their faith and trust in Jesus. He is the One that stands between man and God so that our sins might be pardoned by the shedding of His blood.


Today, no matter how powerful the majority might seem…look up to the cross of Christ and say, “I beg your pardon…pardon me!” Never forget that God always gets the last vote.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about bible prophecy

monday, july 5, 2021

There are many preachers today that are reluctant to preach and teach Bible prophecy. They say it’s too difficult to understand, controversial and some say it doesn’t even matter at all. The problem with that thinking is they are leaving out about one-third of the Bible. Let me give you an example from The Revelation of Jesus Christ, written down by the Apostle John.


The Lord has just revealed a future time (to John) when the church, the bride of Christ is going to experience the Wedding Supper of the Lamb. John records a great shout from the multitude of heavenly hosts saying, “Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting: "Hallelujah! For our Lord God Almighty reigns.” Revelation 19:6 (NIV)


It is in this moment that the Apostle John is told to write all this down. Why write it down? The “why” is answered in the next statement…right after John is told not to bow down to the angel that is showing him the future, but to God alone.


Revelation 19:9-10 (NLT)

9 And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding feast of the Lamb.” And he added, “These are true words that come from God.”

10 Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said, “No, don’t worship me. I am a servant of God, just like you and your brothers and sisters who testify about their faith in Jesus. Worship only God. For the essence of prophecy is to give a clear witness for Jesus.”


The essence or purpose of prophecy is to give a clear witness for Jesus. That is why John is told to write all this down, so that future generations will know about all that is coming for those who have placed their faith and trust in Jesus as Lord and Savior. Bible prophecy is Jesus’ clear witness!


Bible prophecy gives the believing church hope. Hope is an expectancy of that which is coming. That expectancy, that hope, is the fuel of our faith. To remove the details of our coming hope is to shut off the fuel of our faith…leaving us without purpose and passion in this current world.


Proverbs 29:18 (NIV)

18 Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; but blessed is he who keeps the law.


God planned for the church of every generation to live with hope in the revealed prophecies of Scripture and the expectancy of Jesus’ return. This is clear from the teachings of the Apostles. The Apostle Paul wrote this shortly before his death…there is a prize for those who are eagerly looking forward to the fulfillment of Bible prophecy…the return of Christ for His bride, the church.


2 Timothy 4:8 (NLT)

8 And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing.


We eagerly look forward to Jesus’ appearing because we have read and believed Bible prophecy. We know what’s coming and that advanced knowledge has made us long for our Lord’s return, and the Wedding Supper of the Lamb that will follow.


There are two things that will naturally occur in a believer’s life that has come to the knowledge and truth of Bible prophecy…the soon return of Christ. Number one, they will purify their lives of sin through confession and repentance. Number two, they will tell someone about the Gospel and that which is coming…that which has been revealed to them through Bible prophecy. If you think about it, this was always the mission of the church…to purify ourselves from sin and to share the Good News with those who do not know about Christ and His return.


When I grow weary in this battle against sin and death…I read the Bible and study the revealed prophecy of God…those Bible prophecies give a clear witness of Jesus and His soon return. That gives me hope and that hope fuels my faith. Faith that God is going to do everything He has promised.


I close today with one of the clearest Biblical Revelations of coming events. This Bible prophecy is coming, even though we do not know the day or the hour, it’s coming. Ready or not, He’s coming soon…and may these verses give you hope today and remove your fears and doubts though Jesus Christ our Lord.


1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 (NLT)

15 We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died.

16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians who have died will rise from their graves.

17 Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.

18 So encourage each other with these words.


Did it work? Are you encouraged and strengthened by this Bible Prophecy? If not, the problem is not with the prophecy. The problem is in your unbelieving heart.


For the essence of prophecy is to give a clear witness for Jesus.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the assembly of believers

monday, june 28, 2021

Do Christians need to assemble together? Is it necessary for the Body of Christ, the Church, to physically meet together on a regular basis? Is it ok to live the Christian life independently, without the assembly of believers? What about choosing to stay home and occasionally watch the services online? Is that enough?


I’m hearing more and more people tell me that they don’t really need to attend the assembly (church services) to follow Christ. They don’t really find it all that important or necessary in this issue of Christian faith. Church attendance is on the decline nationwide, so this must be a common theme today.


I read a recent Gallup poll that reflects this trend. In the 1950’s, 49% of Americans said they attended the weekly assembly of the church. That number now has declined to around 35%. Even those who say they regularly attend church services are now attending “less” than previously.

We’ve studied this at NCC and found that our average church attender attends around 50% of the time. That means the average NCC person attends around 26 of 52 worship services per year. Is that statistic important? Does it really matter?


Does the Bible reveal the answer to this question regarding the assembly of believers? What does this trend say about the ability for the modern American Church to endure hardship, suffering, opposition and persecution? Will this type of church thinking survive the great time of testing that Jesus said is coming upon the whole world?


Revelation 3:10-11 (NLT)

10 “Because you have obeyed my command to persevere, I will protect you from the great time of testing that will come upon the whole world to test those who belong to this world.

11 I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take away your crown.


Hebrews chapter 10 reveals a connection between an enduring and thriving church to their focus on regularly meeting together for strength and encouragement.


Hebrews 10:23-25 (NLT)

23 Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. 24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.

25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.


Is it reasonable for a Christian to accept verse 23 as absolute truth and reject verse 25? We readily accept our call of God to hold tightly to the faith and we believe God is faithful and trustworthy regarding His divine promises revealed through the Bible. But what about verse 25? Is that one important for the believers today?


Did you notice that verse 25 ends with this...“especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.” Jesus told us that things were going get very difficult for believers before His return. In fact, the Bible says that many would fall away from the true faith in the last days and follow after deceiving spirits.


1 Timothy 4:1-2 (NLT)

1 Now the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some will turn away from the true faith; they will follow deceptive spirits and teachings that come from demons.

2 These people are hypocrites and liars, and their consciences are dead.


The Bible is clear...there is strength, encouragement, and safety inside the assembly of the Body of Christ. We need the assembly, and the assembly needs us. God is the One that puts the different parts of the Body together and each part is necessary and important for the Body to be healthy and strong against the demonic forces of this fallen world.


Some Christians feel spiritually mature, confident and secure without being around other believers and maybe that’s true. But what about our calling to help those who are less mature by encouraging and strengthening them? We are called to minister and serve each other in the Body of Christ.


1 Corinthians 12:22-27 (NLT)

22 In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary.

23 And the parts we regard as less honorable are those we clothe with the greatest care. So we carefully protect those parts that should not be seen,

24 while the more honorable parts do not require this special care. So God has put the body together such that extra honor and care are given to those parts that have less dignity.

25 This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other.

26 If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad.

27 All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it.


We read the Bible and see that Moses was only a shadow or a preview (Deuteronomy 18:15) of the Ultimate Deliverer-Jesus...that was to come and set the people free from slavery and lead them to the Promised Land called Heaven. It’s interesting to me that God didn’t tell Moses to send the Children of Israel out into the wilderness one by one with a map to the Promised Land. He sent them out and commanded them to stay together until they crossed over Jordan. They would certainly need each other on their wilderness journey. That advice would still hold true today.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about cherubim

monday, June 21, 2021

Do you know about cherubim? Do you know what cherubim do in the Bible? Have you ever heard of a “guardian cherub”? What if I told you that the answer to those questions reveal a life changing truth of God and the entry into His divine presence?


Cherubim are angelic like creatures that serve as the guardians of paradise. Cherubim stand guard over the very presence of God. If fact it was cherubim that stood guard at the entry gate of the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve were forced to leave the presence of God because of sin.


Genesis 3:24 (NLT)

24 After sending them out, the LORD God stationed mighty cherubim to the east of the Garden of Eden. And he placed a flaming sword that flashed back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.


Adam and Eve had lost their ability to live and walk in the very presence of God. God placed cherubim between man and God. Man could no longer go directly into the presence of God because the cherubim kept guard (with flaming sword) over the holy presence of God. The Paradise of God’s Presence was lost.


Fast forward to the time of Moses when God has freed Israel from their 400 years of Egyptian bondage. God reveals His glory to Moses and instructs Moses to build a tabernacle, a house for God’s presence to come down into the camp of Israel. God was going to dwell in the midst of the camp of Israel. The glorious presence of God was going to come to dwell among the people and guess what would stand guard between the holiness of God and the un-holiness of Israel...yes...cherubim! Did you know that? There was a veil, a curtain that separated the presence of God, the Most Holy Place from the rest of the tabernacle. I want you to notice what is engraved onto that veil/curtain.


Exodus 26:31 (NLT)

31 “For the inside of the Tabernacle, make a special curtain of finely woven linen. Decorate it with blue, purple, and scarlet thread and with skillfully embroidered cherubim.


Adam and Eve couldn’t get past the guardian cherubs...paradise was lost. God’s mercy offered a very limited entry into His holy presence in the time of Moses, behind the veil, behind the guardian cherubs. The Jewish high priest could enter one time per year (Yum Kippur or Day of Atonement) and he must enter with a blood sacrifice or he himself would die when he encountered the absolute holiness of God. For 1500 years (Moses to Jesus) the cherubim stood guard over the presence of God behind the curtain.


Do you know what happened when Jesus died on the cross? The veil of the Jerusalem temple, engraved with cherubim, was torn into from top to bottom.


Mark 15:37-38 (NLT)

37 Then Jesus uttered another loud cry and breathed his last. 38 And the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom.


On that day, when Jesus breathed His final breath His blood poured out as payment for the sins of Adam and all of Adam’s seed. That day our Holy High Priest-Jesus entered the presence of God, behind the curtain to pay off our sin debt. The cherubim that guarded the very presence of God, the cherubim that guarded paradise were dismissed. The way to God was once again open. The paradise of God’s presence was once again available. The curtain was taken down and the cherubim would drop their flaming sword because of the sacrifice of the ultimate High Priest...JESUS CHRIST.


The way to God has been opened. Paradise is once again available for those who will receive this blood offering from our High Priest Jesus. We must receive this offering by faith. We must believe that Jesus’ death on the cross paid the price that was sufficient to remove the cherubim that stood guard with flaming sword between God and man.


Now that we know this amazing truth of God...we have a sword of our own. The Sword of the Spirit, the very Word of God. This Word from God reveals the way back to God, the way to the paradise of God’s presence. How wonderful is this Good News. How wonderful is the future that God has prepared for those who love Him and believe His Word.


Romans 8:31-32 (NLT)

31 What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? 32 Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else?


Overwhelming victory is ours through Jesus. The curtain is torn; the cherubim have dropped their swords for those who are covered by the blood of the Lamb. But I must tell you this truth today. Those cherubim still stand guard over the presence of God for all those who refuse to put their faith and trust in Jesus as Lord and Savior. No one will pass by their flaming sword without the blood of Christ.


The church bears the responsibility in these last days to not only receive this good news, but we must also share this good news as we await the return of our Lord Jesus.


Rejoice in this great salvation, but never forget that we have been called by God to share this glorious news with those who do not know that the gate to paradise, the gate to God’s glorious presence has been opened by the blood of Jesus Christ, our glorious High Priest.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen.


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the warning

monday, june 14, 2021

There is a verse in the Old Testament Book of Amos that I have always found revealing and convicting. God tells Amos that He never does anything without first revealing it to at least one of His prophets/messengers.


Amos 3:7 (NLT)

7 Indeed, the Sovereign LORD never does anything until he reveals his plans to his servants the prophets.


A search of the Holy Scriptures also reveals this way of God. Let me give you two examples. God gave Noah advanced warning of his plan to judge the world with a great flood. God’s justice required The Warning message to be given in advance...before the righteous judgment came.


2 Peter 2:5 (NLT)

5 And God did not spare the ancient world—except for Noah and the seven others in his family. Noah warned the world of God’s righteous judgment. So God protected Noah when he destroyed the world of ungodly people with a vast flood.


Noah warned the world because God had given him advanced knowledge of the coming judgment. Indeed, the Sovereign LORD never does anything until he reveals his plans to his servants and prophets.


Habakkuk is another Old Testament example of The Warning. Habakkuk appears on the scene around 600 years before Christ. Like in the days of Noah, God was planning to bring judgment, but this time God’s judgment was coming against the Nation of Judah, but the judgment would also impact the whole world.


Habakkuk 1:5-6 (NLT)

5 The LORD replied, “Look around at the nations; look and be amazed! For I am doing something in your own day, something you wouldn’t believe even if someone told you about it.

6 I am raising up the Babylonians, a cruel and violent people. They will march across the world and conquer other lands.


In both cases (Noah and Habakkuk), God gave His servants advanced knowledge. He gave them The Warning. God never brings judgment upon a people without first giving them The Warning. God’s mercy always gives time for repentance. The Warning is given in advance so that the Lord’s servants will have time to preach repentance to the people so they might be saved from the coming judgment.


Habakkuk preached and the prophets Jeremiah and Zephaniah also joined him to preach about The Warning...but the nation of Judah refused to repent during the time of The Warning. The people of ancient Judah mocked and scoffed at The Warning and their nation and Jerusalem was destroyed in the judgment.


Noah preached about The Warning but only 8 people entered the Ark. The people also mocked and scoffed The Warning of Noah. The Apostle Peter connects The Warning in the time of Noah to The Warning in the time of the church, our time.


2 Peter 3:3-7 (NLT)

3 Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires.

4 They will say, “What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again? From before the times of our ancestors, everything has remained the same since the world was first created.”

5 They deliberately forget that God made the heavens by the word of his command, and he brought the earth out from the water and surrounded it with water.

6 Then he used the water to destroy the ancient world with a mighty flood.

7 And by the same word, the present heavens and earth have been stored up for fire. They are being kept for the day of judgment, when ungodly people will be destroyed.


The Warning...by the same word...preachers have been preaching The Warning for some 2,000 years now. And yes, many have repented and turned to God for mercy by placing their faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. But most have mocked, scoffed, and rejected The Warning.


In fact, people today are becoming very angry at those who continue to preach The Warning. They don’t want to hear The Warning! Like in the days of Habakkuk, sin is everywhere. Listen to Habakkuk’s description of his ancient culture and see if it still apples today.


Habakkuk 1:1-4 (NLT)

1 This is the message that the prophet Habakkuk received in a vision. 2 How long, O LORD, must I call for help? But you do not listen! “Violence is everywhere!” I cry, but you do not come to save.

3 Must I forever see these evil deeds? Why must I watch all this misery? Wherever I look, I see destruction and violence. I am surrounded by people who love to argue and fight. 4 The law has become paralyzed, and there is no justice in the courts. The wicked far outnumber the righteous, so that justice has become perverted.


Here’s my question to the church, to those who have received advanced knowledge about The Warning of God. Do the people who have received The Warning have any responsibility to Warn Others? I’ll let the Book of Ezekiel answer that one...he also had advanced knowledge about The Warning.


Ezekiel 3:16-21 (NLT)

16 After seven days the LORD gave me a message. He said,

17 “Son of man, I have appointed you as a watchman for Israel. Whenever you receive a message from me, warn people immediately.

18 If I warn the wicked, saying, ‘You are under the penalty of death,’ but you fail to deliver the warning, they will die in their sins. And I will hold you responsible for their deaths.

19 If you warn them and they refuse to repent and keep on sinning, they will die in their sins. But you will have saved yourself because you obeyed me.

20 “If righteous people turn away from their righteous behavior and ignore the obstacles I put in their way, they will die. And if you do not warn them, they will die in their sins. None of their righteous acts will be remembered, and I will hold you responsible for their deaths.

21 But if you warn righteous people not to sin and they listen to you and do not sin, they will live, and you will have saved yourself, too.”


This is why the Church of Jesus Christ cannot and will not be silent. The Warning has been given to us.


He has made us a Kingdom of priests for God his Father. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen. 7 Look! He comes with the clouds of heaven. And everyone will see him— even those who pierced him. And all the nations of the world will mourn for him. Yes! Amen! Revelation 1:6-7 (NLT)


Indeed, the Sovereign LORD never does anything until he reveals his plans to his servants and prophets.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

What if....one hundred questions that will change your life?

monday, june 7, 2021

1.  What if some 6000 years ago darkness was over the face of the deep and God said, Let there be light and it was so and it was good...what if?


2.  What if 5 days later God created the first man, Adam, from the dust of this new earth and breathed into him the breath of life and that man actually became a living/eternal soul...what if?


3.  What if God looked at this first man “Adam” and saw his loneliness and caused him to fall into a deep sleep while removing his rib and formed from that rib a helper and companion called “woman”, named Eve...what if?


4.  What if they were forever creatures, living in a forever place, in forever wonder...what if?


5.  What if their Creator gave them free will and told them about one thing that was out of bounds, one thing that would make their free will, “free will”...what if?


6.  What if they disobeyed this Creator and did that one thing that He asked them not to do...what if?


7.  What if this righteous, holy, Creator God was so righteous and holy that He could not, would not dwell in the presence of un-holiness and He had to separate Himself from His new creation...what if?


8.  What if the separation from this holy, Creator God was more than distance, but also included time...forever time...what if?


9.  What if God’s perfect creation had been corrupted and polluted by an enemy of God...what if?


10.  What if that enemy, through the fall of man, had actually obtained dominion over God’s new creation...what if?


11.  What if God’s love for these men and women of earth was so great that He would not yield to this enemy, but make a plan for a future man, a future seed of woman, to crush this enemy’s head...what if?


12.  What if man was allowed to live, at least for a season with the corrupted seed of sin in his life...what if?


13.  What if they lived and had children and they lived and had children...what would those children be like...what if?


14.  What if the evil of Adam and the dominion of Satan actual became progressively worse in the heart of man...what if?


15.  What if 9 generations from Adam that Creator God said He was sorry and grieved that He had created man at all...what if?


16.  What if the Creator decided to start all over...to take the population of the earth down to 8 people...what if?


17.  What if the Creator planned a great flood, a flood that would destroy all life on earth outside the boat that His man Noah would build...what if?


18.  What if the promised seed of God was on that boat...a seed from Adam carefully protected and kept dry and safe through those 40 days and 40 nights of deadly rain...what if?


19.  What if one of those men on the boat was named Shem and the Creator had determined to raise a miracle seed from this man’s children...what if?


20.  What if 9 generations after Shem the Creator would raise up a righteous man of faith named Abram...what if?


21.  What if this man named Abram would become the father of many nations, not just any nation, but a nation of children that would be called “God’s Children”...what if?


22.  What if God initiated an everlasting covenant with this new friend called Abram...a covenant that would bless all the peoples of the earth...even to future generations...what if?


23.  What if this man, Abram, would have a son, named Isaac, through miraculous means when he was 100 and his wife was 90...what if?


24.  What if God came to Abraham one day and asked him to kill his son Isaac on an altar in a place called Moriah...what if?


25.  What if Abraham actually took his son there to Mt. Moriah and what if Abraham actually took his knife in his hand to slay the boy as an act of total submission and obedience to his Creator God...what if?


26.  What if this sacrifice called for by the Creator was actually a test to see if Abraham really loved God or just thought he did...what if?


27.  What if God stopped Abraham’s knife, at the last moment, and provided a substitute Lamb as a blood offering that day...what if?


28.  What if that boy Isaac grew up to be a fine young man like his daddy Abraham and followed in the faithful life of his father...what if?


29.  What if that boy, Isaac, had a son named Jacob...what if?


30.  What if the Creator came to Jacob one day and changed Jacob’s name to Israel...what if?


31.  What if Jacob had 12 sons and what if those 12 sons became the 12 tribes of Israel...what if?


32.  What if those 12 tribes grew from 12 to over 2 million...what if?


33.  What if those 12 tribes of Israel find themselves slaves to an evil Egyptian Pharaoh...what if?


34.  What if the Creator looks down from His glorious throne and sees the distress of His covenant children and decides to set them free...what if?


35.  What if the Creator reveals Himself through a burning bush to a man from the Tribe of Levi called Moses...what if?


36.  What if this man Moses had been born for this very purpose...A deliverer…to go to Egypt and set the Children of Israel free...what if?


37.  What if this man of God, Moses, had been given power from God to turn wooden sticks into snakes...what if?


38.  What if this man of God, Moses, was given power to call down plagues against Egypt to reveal the Creator to the people in Egypt...what if?


39.  What if this man Moses, would enter Egypt as one man, but leave Egypt with more than 2 million sons of Abraham following him toward the Promised Land...what if?


40.  What if Moses and the millions found themselves trapped at the edge of the Red Sea and what if the Creator of the Red Sea made the “wet”...”dry” that day...what if?


41.  What if Moses and the millions find themselves at the mountain of God and what if Moses went up on that mountain...entering into the very presence of God...what if?


42.  What if God made a new covenant and a new law with man that day...what if?


43.  What if this new law had the ability to make men holy in the sight of God, once again...what if?


44.  What if God used this law to create an environment and a people by which His Shekinah Glory would once again come and dwell in the presence of man...what if?


45.  What if God gave these people, these sons of Abraham, a piece of land, called the Promised Land (Canaan) as an eternal possession...what if?


46.  What if there were already people living in that land when they arrived...what if?


47.  What if God actually fought for these covenant people of Israel...I mean to actually fight on their behalf against their enemies...what if?


48.  What if these once enslaved people of Egypt now find themselves as possessors of a land that flows with milk and honey...what if?


49.  What if God gave them a king...a real king, named David, chosen by God, whose kingdom would be established forever...what if?


50.  What if this King David (14 generations from Abraham) was a shadow of the True King that would come crush the serpents head and regain the dominion of planet earth that Adam lost...what if?


51.  What if 14 generations after King David these set free Children of Israel would become so rebellious that God would raise up a foreign kingdom in Babylon to take away all that God had given them...what if?


52.  What if 14 generations from that exile, out of the seed of Shem, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah and David a man and a woman appear by the names of Mary and Joseph...what if?


53.  What if that woman, a virgin had a son...what if?


54.  What if that virgin, visited by the angel Gabriel, bore the seed of a King, an eternal King...what if?


55.  What if that King, was the One promised by the Father, which would reign with justice and righteousness in an eternal kingdom...what if?


56.  What if this King, born of David, is actually the sacrificial Lamb of God, the payment for the sins of the world...what if?


57.  What if this man child was born for the expressed purpose that He would die on a cross for the sins of all mankind...what if?


58.  What if this sacrifice was actually the physical image of the invisible God...Immanuel...what if?


59.  What if they, the sons of Abraham, didn’t believe Him and decided to kill Him instead of serving Him...what if?


60.  What if they, in their zeal for God, killed the very One sent by God to save them...what if?


61.  What if their crime was actually the fulfillment of God’s perfect plan of salvation all along...what if?


62.  What if this Jesus was the seed of woman destined to crush the serpents head from the very beginning...what if?


63.  What if He really died on that cross...what if?


64.  What if they really did put his dead body in a tomb one evening 2000 years ago...what if?


65.  What if Satan really did think he had won...what if?


66.  What if there really is an Easter...a resurrection from the dead...what if?


67.  What if Jesus really did rise from the tomb to walk among the living...what if?


68.  What if that grave couldn’t hold this man...what if?


69.  What if He really was of a new seed, a different seed, a seed not subject to the curse of death, but able to overcome the power of death...what if?


70.  What if He really did appear to some 500 people in those 40 days after the resurrection and what if He really did tell us to go into the entire world and tell them the good news...what if?


71.  What if He really has gone to heaven to prepare a place for us...what if?


72.  What if He really is coming back to get us and take us that place to spend forever...what if?


73.  What if we really will stand before Him and what if He really plans to judge us for what we have done with that which we have received...what if?


74.  What if the day of His return has been prophesied and what if those signs in the Holy Scriptures are there to make us ready...what if?


75.  What if Israel’s rebirth as a nation in 1948 was one of those signs...what if?


76.  What if earthquakes, hurricanes, wars, sexual immorality, and lawlessness are signs of His coming...what if?


77.  What if current world events, political unrest, riots and a pandemic are actually a warning signs of that which is coming...what if?


78.  What if the current rebellion against Biblical Truth is the prelude to a worldwide spiritual battle that is headed for Armageddon...what if?


79.  What if this looming worldwide economic crisis is a sign of His soon return...what if?


80.  What if this movement away from national sovereignty and toward a new world order is the prelude for the coming of the antichrist...what if?


81.  What if the rise in worldwide hatred of the Jewish people is a sign of His coming...what if?


82.  What if all this Middle East turmoil between Israel, Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah is actually a spiritual battle between the seed of the serpent and the seed of God...what if?


83.  What if there is a day, just like in the days of Noah when mankind will be eating, drinking and making merry and then the judgment of God comes suddenly...what if?


84.  What if the Bible is the absolute perfect Word of God, absolute truth...all of it...what if?


85.  What if there is really is going to be a rapture of the church...what if?


86.  What if there is a coming day when the Lord Himself will come down from heaven with voice of the archangel, a commanding shout, and a trumpet call from God for all who have been redeemed...what if?


87.  What if unbelievers really are left behind to endure a 7-year hell on earth...what if?


88.  What if there really is a single day during those 7 years, so awful that one third of the earths remaining population will die in the wrath of God...what if?


89.  What if there really is a wedding supper of the Lamb where believers will eat at the same table as Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and of course...King Jesus...what if?


90.  What if there really is a heaven...what if?


91.  What if it’s really true that the streets are like gold and there will be no death there...never...what if?


92.  What if Jesus really is the only way to have my old, dirty, sinful robe washed white as snow so that I may walk through the gates into the holy city and eat from the tree of life...what if?


93.  What if believers really do get a glorified immortal body there and that perfect, glorified, immortal body will allow us to see His face...really see His face...what if?


94.  What if there really is a place called hell...what if?


95.  What if hell is really a place of everlasting fire, weeping, gnashing of teeth and torment...what if?


96.  What if there are no second chances there...what if?


97.  What if you can’t die there (in hell), even if you want to...what if?


98.  What if Jesus really was right when He said that most people are headed there right now through a broad and wide road...what if?


99.  What if you just heard these questions by the providence and mercy of an eternally loving, 

gracious and Holy God...what if?


100. What now?


Acts 2:37-39 (NIV)

When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, "Brothers, what shall we do [NOW]?"

38Peter replied, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off--for all whom the Lord our God will call."


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about inevitable temptation

Tuesday, june 1, 2021

“Inevitable”...incapable of being avoided or evaded (Merriam-Webster). Jesus teaches us that temptations are inevitable and unable to be avoided as we live our lives in the flesh on this present earth. Everyone is tempted and all temptation finds its source in Satan. In fact, the Bible clearly defines Satan as the tempter (Matthew 4:3). With that truth and background, let’s focus on this teaching of Jesus.


Matthew 18:7 (NLT)

“What sorrow awaits the world, because it tempts people to sin. Temptations are inevitable, but what sorrow awaits the person who does the tempting.


Why would the world tempt people to sin? Why would any person tempt another person to sin against God? The answer is clear...they belong to the Tempter-Satan. Satan has the power to use people to tempt other people to join in his rebellions against God. Satan is the source of all sin.


Worldly temptations are inevitable because we all live in the world and Satan is the present ruler of this world. God does not tempt people to sin. Yes, God does test people, but His motive for testing people is to make them winners/overcomers, not sinners.


James 1:12 (NLT)

12 God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.


God’s testing has a pure and holy motive that produces overcomers by purifying their faith and their trust in the Word of God that reveals Jesus the Son. But Satan’s inevitable and unholy temptations are designed to produce and recruit losers...losers who will join in his rebellion against God. God’s testing actually strengthens the faithful and prepares them for the time of inevitable temptations.


James 1:13-15 (NLT)

13 And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else.

14 Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away.

15 These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.


And where did our “evil desires” come from? Why is temptation inevitable for every person on earth? Satan’s deception in the Garden of Eden has corrupted the human seed...we have all been corrupted by the seed of sin and rebellion.


Romans 5:12 (NLT)

12 When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned.


There is One who tests...God’s testing produces faith and holiness and leads to life eternal. There is also one who tempts...Satan’s inevitable temptations are a form of recruitment for all who will join him in his failed rebellion against God.


That brings me back to Jesus’ revelation about this topic of “inevitable temptation”. “What sorrow awaits the world, because it tempts people to sin. Temptations are inevitable, but what sorrow awaits the person who does the tempting”.


There is an old saying that must surely apply here, “Misery Loves Company”. Satan is a loser that is recruiting losers to keep losing...forever. There is a judgment day coming when sin will be brought out into the light of truth. Yes, we have all sinned and rebelled against God. God offers each of us a “Test of Faith”. This test is designed by God to saves us. But how? This test of faith saves us...if...we believe that trusting our lives to Jesus, placing our faith in Jesus, will actually cause God to forgive us and pardon us from our rebellion and sin against Him.


But there is another option...to fail God’s test of faith, join the rebellion and fall victim to the “inevitable temptation” of Satan. Did you notice how Jesus describes this fall? The recruited of Satan actually become recruiters themselves.


The world wants Christians today to join them in their rebellion against God’s Word and become like them. Abandon the Bible and join in the rebellion. Yield to the flesh and all its inevitable temptations. But that would lead us into a great and horrifying sorrow because Jesus told us, “What sorrow awaits the world, because it tempts people to sin”. The world wants us to depart from our pure faith and trust in Christ and join in the rebellion. This is the test, and this is the temptation for the church today. The Apostle Paul told us that this would be happen in the last days.


1 Timothy 4:1-2 (NLT)

1 Now the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some will turn away from the true faith; they will follow deceptive spirits and teachings that come from demons.

2 These people are hypocrites and liars, and their consciences are dead.


Yes, temptations are inevitable. Temptations come through Satan and those who have been recruited by Satan. Yes, your faith will also be tested...tested by God. God’s testing is to make you stronger...giving you a victory. Temptations are inevitable. This is the test, and this is the temptation for the church today.


James 1:2-4 (NLT)

2 Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.

4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

pentecost and the spirit

Monday, may 24, 2021

This past Sunday was the traditional date of Pentecost, the day the Holy Spirit descended upon the new church in Jerusalem, the supernatural birth of the church age. The breath of God came to the church that day in the form of wind and holy fire. The world would never be the same. Do you understand why?


Some 50 days earlier, on the Feast of Passover, Jesus, the sacrificial Lamb of God, had died on the cross in that same city, Jerusalem. The Jewish Feast of Pentecost follows the first day of Passover by 50 days. After the resurrection, Jesus gave specific instructions to his disciples to remain in Jerusalem and wait for the gift of God that was coming from heaven.


Acts 1:3-5 (NLT) 3 During the forty days after his crucifixion, he appeared to the apostles from time to time, and he proved to them in many ways that he was actually alive. And he talked to them about the Kingdom of God. 4 Once when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before.

5 John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”


40 days...Jesus revealed himself several times during those 40 days after the cross and Passover. At the end of those 40 days the disciples watched as Jesus ascended into heaven in front of them. Their Master, Teacher, Savior and King had taken his place at the right hand of the Father in Heaven. And then, they waited...for 10 days they waited in Jerusalem. They waited for the gift that would forever change the world. 50 days! 40 of them with Jesus’ physical presence still on the earth and 10 days without the physical presence of Jesus on the earth. They waited in Jerusalem for the gift to arrive. Do you understand the gift?


Can you imagine how hard the waiting was for those men? They had spent some 3 years in the physical presence of the very Son of God and now they are all alone and waiting. Waiting for what? Jesus had previously given them some insight about the gift that would soon arrive in Jerusalem on Pentecost.


John 14:15-19 (NLT) 15 “If you love me, obey my commandments.

16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you.

17 He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know him, because he lives with you now and later will be in you.

18 No, I will not abandon you as orphans—I will come to you.

19 Soon the world will no longer see me, but you will see me. Since I live, you also will live.


Yes, the physical person of Christ had ascended to the Father and left the earth, but Jesus is revealing the Gift. The Spirit of Christ was coming to the earth on Pentecost. The Spirit of Christ was not coming to live in a Jerusalem Temple, but to live inside the hearts of every believer. And yes, He came! He came in power! The breath of God came in the form of wind and fire. He (the Spirit of Christ) entered into the bodies of those disciples and the world would never be the same again.


It’s been some 2000 years since Pentecost when the Spirit of Christ came to the earth to dwell among the called-out children of God, the church. It’s been some 2000 years since Jesus ascended to the Father’s house in heaven from the Mount of Olives, just outside the Eastern Gate of Jerusalem. And still, we wait...the church waits...waits for what?


This Jesus story is not over. We still wait for Him. Believers all over the world are watching and waiting for Him. He lived on the earth for some 33 years in the flesh and now He has lived on the earth for some 2000 years in the Spirit, but what are His disciples waiting for now? What is the church waiting for today?


John 14:1-4 (NLT) 1 “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. 2 There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? 3 When  everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.”


When everything is ready, I will come and get you...that’s what we wait for today. We are not orphans in waiting...the Spirit of Christ lives inside our hearts today. The Spirit of Christ groans inside our waiting hearts. All creation is groaning and waiting...waiting for what? Much of the waiting world has rejected the Spirit of Christ, but the believers still wait. We watch and wait for His coming. We give thanks to God for Pentecost and the Gift of the Holy Spirit, but we realize this truth...the Holy Spirit is only a foretaste of the glory that is coming when Jesus comes for His bride, the church.


Romans 8:23 (NLT) And we believers also groan, even though we have the Holy Spirit within us as a foretaste of future glory, for we long for our bodies to be released from sin and suffering. We, too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as his adopted children, including the new bodies he has promised us.


We wait and we continue to preach the good news...Jesus was crucified on the Jewish Feast of Passover. He was buried on the Feast of Unleavened Bread. He was raised from the grave on the Feast of Firstfruits. He came to the earth in the form of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost. And now, we again wait for the Gift of God from Heaven.


Do you know what the next Jewish Feast is...Trumpets!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen!


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about law and order

monday, May 17, 2021

There is a particular Psalm of King David that has great application for us today, but first the background story. David was anointed by God to be the King of Israel when he was very young. But it was some 20 years later before he finally took the throne of Israel and ruled as their King in Jerusalem. During those 20 years, David suffered greatly under King Saul and his governing officials. The opposition to David’s coming kingdom was great and powerful, but God’s plan to place his chosen King on the throne in Jerusalem was unstoppable.


The Bible reveals the promise of God to one day put another Royal King on the throne in Jerusalem. This coming King will come from the lineage and offspring of King David. This future King and Kingdom will be permanent, the eternal Kingdom of Jesus Christ.


Isaiah 33:5-6 (NLT)

5 Though the LORD is very great and lives in heaven, he will make Jerusalem his home of justice and righteousness. 6 In that day he will be your sure foundation, providing a rich store of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge. The fear of the LORD will be your treasure.


These promises of God are very old and there has been, and is currently, much opposition to the coming Kingdom of Christ and His subsequent reign from Jerusalem. But like the ancient kingdom of David, God’s promises are unstoppable, the timing is the only question.


That background reveals the context of Psalm 11 and its application to our current time.


Psalm 11:1-3 (NLT)

1 I trust in the LORD for protection. So why do you say to me, “Fly like a bird to the mountains for safety! 2 The wicked are stringing their bows and fitting their arrows on the bowstrings. They shoot from the shadows at those whose hearts are right. 3 The foundations of law and order have collapsed. What can the righteous do?”


Can you see any modern-day application in that Psalm of David? It looks like our foundations of law and order have collapsed around us today. The justice and righteousness of God has been abandoned by the rulers of our land. That which is ordained of God is mocked, while evil and violence is allowed to move unabated in our city streets. We can all understand the natural response... “Fly like a bird to the mountains for safety!”. But where can we go when the foundations of law-and-order collapse around us... “I trust in the LORD for protection”. Notice the next verse in David’s Psalm and know that this is our present truth as well.


Psalm 11:4-7 (NLT)

4 But the LORD is in his holy Temple; the LORD still rules from heaven. He watches everyone closely, examining every person on earth. 5 The LORD examines both the righteous and the wicked. He hates those who love violence. 6 He will rain down blazing coals and burning sulfur on the wicked, punishing them with scorching winds. 7 For the righteous LORD loves justice. The virtuous will see his face.


Christians should be encouraged today...the LORD is in his holy Temple; the LORD still rules from heaven, even as we see our man-made foundations of law-and-order collapse around us. There is a King and a Kingdom coming to this earth. The LORD revealed this future Kingdom to the Prophet Daniel some 500 years after the time of King David, reminding Daniel, and us today, that His promises are unstoppable and eternal.


Daniel 7:13-14 (NLT)

13 As my vision continued that night, I saw someone like a son of man coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient One and was led into his presence.

14 He was given authority, honor, and sovereignty over all the nations of the world, so that people of every race and nation and language would obey him. His rule is eternal—it will never end. His kingdom will never be destroyed.


Yes, it seems that our world is falling apart. Lawlessness, pandemic, political unrest, rioting in the streets, racial tensions, and now some 3500 rockets have been fired into the Promised Land from the enemies of Israel. What do you think all this means? Where do you think all this is going? Most of you have heard these final verses read from the Old Testament Book of Isaiah at Christmas, but this prophecy of Isaiah announces a coming King and Kingdom to this present earth...justice and righteousness are coming soon...law and order will be restored.


Isaiah 9:6-7 (NIV)

6 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

7 Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.


Yes, the man-made foundations of law-and-order are collapsing, like in the days of King David, but what can the righteous do? The opposition to David’s approaching kingdom was great and powerful, but God’s plan to place his chosen King on the throne in Jerusalem was unstoppable. Know this truth today...David was only a shadow, a preview of the eternal Kingdom of Christ that is coming.


So, what do the righteous do? We put our faith and trust in our King Jesus and the promises of His approaching eternal Kingdom. May His Kingdom come and may His will be done...on earth as it is in heaven.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

 

a word from terry

about the new life people

monday, May 10, 2021

Truth and Encouragement...that’s what people need today. Any real encouragement must be based on truth. Truth is the only real encouragement. How could a person truly be encouraged by a lie or the absence of truth? Let’s begin with truth, the truth about the “new life” that believers have received through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Colossians 3:1-4 (NLT)

1 Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand.

2 Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth.

3 For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.

4 And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.

 

These “new life” people think about heaven a lot. That’s what the “new life” does to a believer. It places eternity and eternal thoughts in our hearts. We think about the realities of heaven and we think about the Savior that has given us this “new life” and what it will be like to actually see Him seated on the throne of heaven one day.


These “new life” people have experienced the death of their “old life” when they were been born again in Christ Jesus. These “new life” people know that their “real life” is now hidden in Christ, but one day the veil will be forever removed, and we will fully experience our “new life” in the very presence of God, sharing in the glory of the Father and the Son...forever.


This “new life” thinking always drowns out our temporary life worries and fears. After all, this “new life” will last forever and this current life goes by like a flash, like a fog on a summer morning.


“New life” people know that one day, maybe soon, Christ is going to be revealed to the whole world. On that day, everyone will see Him for who He really is. One day, everyone will see Him, even those who have rejected Him or mocked His Name and His Word.


And what is our response to those “old life people” who do not yet know the truth, those living in despair and without hope. First, we must realize that we were also without hope until someone revealed the Truth to us about the “new life” for those who belong to Christ. We think about the grace and mercy of God that has revealed this “new life” to us. That’s why we want desperately to share the good news about this “new life” with others.


Why? Why do we want to share this good news about the “new life” with others? It’s called the Truth. The same chapter in Colossians reveals the Truth...the wrath of God is coming for those who do not receive this “new life” that has been freely offered to all who will receive Jesus as Lord and Savior.


Colossians 3:5-7 (NLT)

5 So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires. Don’t be greedy, for a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world. 6 Because of these sins, the anger of God is coming.

7 You used to do these things when your life was still part of this world.


All of us used to do these things before we experienced this “new life” in Christ. But something happened. Light came into our darkness. Truth came and replaced the lie. TRUTH is a person, the person of Christ, and the TRUTH has set us free from our “old life” of sin and death, giving us a glorious and hope filled “new life”.


Encouragement and truth. How could anyone truly be encouraged knowing that one day soon they will stand before God to be judged guilty of sin? This is where Truth encounters the story of all mankind.


Romans 5:6 (NLT)

6 When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners.


Utterly helpless and hopeless...that was us before Jesus gave us our “new life”. Now we know the truth and now we must share this truth with those who still do not know about the “new life” of those who belong to Christ Jesus.


Yes, these “new life people” see the world very different than before. We can see past this one into the next one and it is indeed glorious.


1 Peter 1:23 (NLT)

23 For you have been born again, but not to a life that will quickly end. Your new life will last forever because it comes from the eternal, living word of God.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

billy graham and moses

monday, May 3, 2021

You might find today’s title interesting. I see a spiritual parallel between Billy Graham and Moses. Let’s begin with Moses. Moses was born a Hebrew, but he was raised as an Egyptian. Not just any Egyptian. Moses was raised as a prince in Egypt. All that Egyptian nobility and political influence seemed to disappear when he fled Egypt to live in Midian. Moses was approximately 40 years old when he fled Egypt and it was about 40 years later, at the age of 80, that Moses had his burning bush encounter with God. God called Moses to return to Egypt after his 40-year absence and deliver the Israelites from Egyptian bondage. Moses returned to Egypt, carrying the Message/Word of God. This is where the story gets interesting...the final plague, the death of the firstborn of Egypt was coming next. That’s the context of these next verses:


Exodus 11:1-3 (NLT)

1 Then the LORD said to Moses, “I will strike Pharaoh and the land of Egypt with one more blow. After that, Pharaoh will let you leave this country. In fact, he will be so eager to get rid of you that he will force you all to leave. 2 Tell all the Israelite men and women to ask their Egyptian neighbors for articles of silver and gold.” 3 (Now the LORD had caused the Egyptians to look favorably on the people of Israel. And Moses was considered a very great man in the land of Egypt, respected by Pharaoh’s officials and the Egyptian people alike.)


These slaves of Egypt, led by Moses, were about to plunder the wealth of Egypt and yet, “Moses was considered a very great man in the land of Egypt, respected by Pharaoh’s officials and the Egyptian people alike”. The Egyptians had suffered greatly from the 9 plagues that God had brought upon the land through Moses and the final plague of death to the firstborn was coming. Even with all that, the people of Egypt respected Moses! How is that possible? Moses was respected by the Egyptian political class and the general public, even though he was the leader of the opposition, even after the 9 plagues. How is that possible?


Now, you might wonder...what does this Moses story have to do with Billy Graham? According to Billygraham.org...Every U.S. President since World War II has met with and spoke favorably about Billy Graham. Both Johnson and Nixon, the two who probably sought him the most, offered him high positions in government — which he quickly and politely refused.


Billy Graham met with President’s Truman, Eisenhour, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush #1, Clinton, Bush #2, Obama and Trump before passing away on February 21, 2018. By my calculation, Billy Graham had a positive, personal relationship with 6 democrat presidents and 7 republicans.13 US presidents, and I believe every one of those presidents would have said about Billy Graham what the people of Egypt said about Moses...Billy was a very great man. He was respected and admired by US government officials and the American people alike.


Now, to my point. Yes, the Lord caused the Egyptians to look favorably upon Moses and yes, the Lord made our people to look favorably upon Billy Graham. There was a divine season for both of them. The Lord was behind them both. Political status didn’t matter. Social class didn’t matter. Moses and Billy Graham both commanded respect and admiration in their day and even those who disagreed with their position, or their mission of God, respected their person.


Can anyone see another Billy Graham rising up in America today? Is there a Christian leader that could rise up, hold up the Bible, preach the pure gospel of Jesus Christ and be respected by presidents, social media and the general population today? Has something changed?

Yes, something has changed, and it’s been changing for a while. Let me give you an example. Franklin Graham, the son of Billy Graham was asked by President Trump to speak at the inauguration in January 2017. This is an article (below) from “The Tribune” after the Franklin’s speech.


At the inauguration, which should be a time to unite Americans, he delivered a pointed message of religious intolerance: “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” With our country and the world watching, Graham deliberately antagonized anyone who does not believe in Christ.


Franklin Graham came to that inauguration carrying the Bible. He simply read aloud 1 Timothy 2:5. Franklin Graham didn’t write 1st Timothy. He was simply reading it aloud and he was accused of religious intolerance. Yes, something has changed. The wise man, King Solomon, wrote this...”For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven”.


I can’t be totally sure, but it looks like our season has passed. The season where Christian leaders can stand publicly, hold up the Bible and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to the masses and still be respected by those who disagree. That season has passed. That season has been cancelled. Now, anyone who dares to stand and declare the Word of God or salvation through the name of Jesus...will find themselves cancelled. All respect is gone and cancel time has come.


Will there ever be another voice, carrying a message of God, that commands the respect that was given to Moses and Billy Graham? No one knows for sure, but the Bible warns us that another voice will rise in the last days...and everyone will worship and adore him.


Revelation 13:4 (NLT)

4 They worshiped the dragon for giving the beast such power, and they also worshiped the beast. “Who is as great as the beast?” they exclaimed. “Who is able to fight against him?”


My conclusion...there is another parallel between Moses and Billy Graham. They both came in the power of God to deliver the message of God to the people. Yes, there was opposition and there was hardship. But they never gave up the mission. They refused to be cancelled. They followed God to the very end, and I look forward to meeting both of them one day, maybe soon.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about spirits

monday, april 26, 2021

What goes through your mind when you read this real-life event that took place in the King of Israel’s life, King Saul?


1 Samuel 16:14 (NIV)

14 Now the Spirit of the LORD had departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD tormented him.


Let’s begin with the truth...there are two spirits. One is the Spirit of God and the other is the spirit of Satan. One is good and the other is evil. One brings glory to God and comfort to man. The other blasphemes God and terrorized and torments man.


Can your mind imagine a spirit realm all around us right now? Can your mind imagine a spirit person moving inside of our human bodies, possessing us? Jesus told us that the Spirit of God is like the wind (John 3:7). You cannot see where the Spirit is coming from or where it is going, but you can experience the affect...when the Spirit/Wind blows. Can your mind imagine the realities of the spirit world? The Apostle Paul reveals the truth and gives us a glimpse inside the spirit world.


1 Corinthians 2:9-12 (NLT)

9 That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”

10 But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets.

11 No one can know a person’s thoughts except that person’s own spirit, and no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own Spirit.

12 And we have received God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us.


Verse 12 describes the reality of the two spirits. One is from God and the other is from the god of this world, Satan. These spirits can actually enter into people’s bodies. An evil spirit entered King Saul and he was tormented by that spirit. Notice that when the Spirit of God departed from King Saul, the evil spirit took its place. When the light departed, darkness came. When the Holy departed, the unholy came. The Bible tells us that an evil spirit, the spirit of Satan, entered into Judas as he betrayed Jesus.


Luke 22:3 (NLT)

3 Then Satan entered into Judas Iscariot, who was one of the twelve disciples,


Spirits are entering into people...do you believe this? Do you understand this? Maybe you don’t believe in spirits, good or evil. Jesus surely did...believe in the spirit realm. The Bible clearly states that the Spirit of God (Holy Spirit) descended from heaven and came upon and entered into Jesus when He was baptized in the Jordan River. Later, Jesus (full of the Holy Spirit) is confronted by an evil spirit and I want you to notice how the Holy Spirit of Jesus deals with the unholy spirit of Satan.


Mark 1:23-26 (NLT)

23 Suddenly, a man in the synagogue who was possessed by an evil spirit began shouting,

24 “Why are you interfering with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One sent from God!”

25 Jesus cut him short. “Be quiet! Come out of the man,” he ordered.

26 At that, the evil spirit screamed, threw the man into a convulsion, and then came out of him.


Which spirit do you want inside of your body? Maybe your answer is...neither. That would be impossible. We did not create ourselves. We do not live or die unto ourselves. We are under the authority and power of the spirit realm. Which spirit do you want inside your body? As for now, you have a choice.


The Apostle John calls the other spirit the “spirit of antichrist” (1 John 2). Notice the evil spirits statements from the above text. “Why are you interfering with us...Have you come to destroy us”. Holy and unholy spirits...they are opposing spirits, opposing powers and everyone will be under the possession and authority of one or the other. The Holy Spirit of Christ or the unholy spirit of antichrist.


Are you possessed by a spirit? Does a spirit own you? That’s what the word “possession” means...you are owned by, belong to someone. Which spirit owns you? Which spirit possesses you? Can your mind imagine such a thing? The world was against Jesus then, and they are against Jesus now. The world, at least for now belongs to the power and spirit of antichrist. Jesus proclaimed that He and His followers would not belong to or be possessed by the evil spirit of this world when He prayed to His Father before going to the cross.


John 17:14-16 (NLT)

14 I have given them your word. And the world hates them because they do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world.

15 I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one.

16 They do not belong to this world any more than I do.


Who do you belong to? Who possesses you? Can you be neutral? Does the thought of a spirit realm frighten you today? Can your mind comprehend these two spirit powers that are fighting with each other in the heavens and on the earth today?


Let me give you this peace and promise of God today. The Spirit of Christ that is inside you is so much greater than the spirit of Satan that is on the outside of you today. Satan never had the power to cast out the Holy Spirit, but Jesus always had the power to cast out the evil and unholy spirit of Satan. What does that tell you about the future?


1 John 4:4 (NLT)

4 But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about secular society

monday, april 19, 2021

I read a Los Angeles Times Op-Ed article recently by Phil Zuckerman, dated April 2, 2021 https://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2021-04-02/godlessness-america-religion-secularization The title of the article was, “Why America’s record godlessness is good news for the nation”. Mr. Zuckerman gives his opinion that declining religious belief, and the secularization of the American culture will actually bring a better standard of living for us all...it’s a good thing.


Yes, there is an obvious decline in religious belief in America today. Mr. Zuckerman’s article gives the following statistics that reveal this decline.

  • Gallup poll...Americans who are affiliated with a religious congregation have declined from 75% in 1945 to 47% today. For the first time in American history, those who belong to a religious congregation are in the minority.
  • In the 1970’s, one 1 in 20 Americans claimed “none” as their religion...today it is 1 in 3.
  • Weekly church attendance has decreased, and the percentage of Americans who never attend religious services has increased from 9% to 30% (comparing 1970’s to present).
  • In 1976, nearly 40% of Americans said they believed that the Bible was the actual Word of God, to be taken literally. Today, that number has decreased to 25%.
  • The percentage of Americans who confidently believe in God’s existence, without a doubt, has declined from 63% in 1990 to 53% today.

I don’t refute these statistics or trends. Yes, there is a great falling away taking place in America. But I do have a question...is this a good thing? Is America’s trend toward godlessness and secularization a good thing?


Mr. Zuckerman makes two points that I have a serious problem with. First, he claims that a national secularization that emerges organically will produce a prosperous nation where everyone, religious and secular, will live in harmony together. I find that statement to be “untrue”. This emerging secular society will only tolerate a religious group that goes along with the ruling secular society. This is where religious persecution always begins.


Secondly, Mr. Zuckerman makes this closing statement in his article. “The organic secularization we are experiencing in the United States is a progressive force for good, one that is associated with improved human rights, more protections for planet Earth and an increased sociocultural propensity to make this life as fair and just as we can-in the here and now-rather than in the heavenly reward that fewer and fewer of us believe in.”


Mr. Zuckerman reveals his true belief system in his final sentence. He only believes in the here and now. He doesn’t believe in anything beyond this life...so everything is based on the here and now. There is nothing in Mr. Zuckerman’s secular doctrine that deals with mankind’s greatest enemy...death.


Mr. Zuckerman wants us to believe that man is basically good, and that religious belief does nothing but hinder the goodness of mankind. In fact, he believes that religion is actually a drag on our evolving secular society into more and more utopian goodness.


Everything about Mr. Zuckerman’s utopian secular society is based on “here and now”. If you ask him, “what is the meaning of life”, his answer would surely be eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die. Will this secular doctrine produce a moral society...really? A hopeful society...really?


Luke 12:16-21 (NLT)

16 Then he [Jesus] told them a story: “A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops.

17 He said to himself, ‘What should I do? I don’t have room for all my crops.’

18 Then he said, ‘I know! I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll have room enough to store all my wheat and other goods.

19 And I’ll sit back and say to myself, “My friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry!”’

20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get everything you worked for?’

21 “Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.”


Mr. Zuckerman and those who seek to remove religious truth from society refuse to acknowledge mankind’s greatest enemy...sin and death, by keeping everyone focused only on the here and now. The enemy is real, and the enemy is deadly.


Sin...because we have all sinned against God and none of us are good, not even one (Romans 3:10). Death...is the result of our sin, and everyone will one day stand before God and given an account, and face God’s judgment.


Mr. Zuckerman’s utopian secular society marches hopelessly toward a grave and they have abandoned any hope of heaven and the resurrection of the dead through Jesus Christ our Lord. They have denied the very God that desires to save them. They mock the very God that could give them a resurrection into eternal life. God’s Word has predicted and prophesied this rebellion that would occur in the last days. This rebellion, apostasy or falling away events will usher in the time of the antichrist that will be followed by the return of Jesus Christ in glory and great power.


2 Thessalonians 2:3-8 (NLT)

3 Don’t be fooled by what they say. For that day will not come until there is a great rebellion against God and the man of lawlessness is revealed—the one who brings destruction.

4 He will exalt himself and defy everything that people call god and every object of worship. He will even sit in the temple of God, claiming that he himself is God.

5 Don’t you remember that I told you about all this when I was with you?

6 And you know what is holding him back, for he can be revealed only when his time comes.

7 For this lawlessness is already at work secretly, and it will remain secret until the one who is holding it back steps out of the way.

8 Then the man of lawlessness will be revealed, but the Lord Jesus will kill him with the breath of his mouth and destroy him by the splendor of his coming.


Today, it is the Truth that is holding back the Lawlessness. It is the Light that is holding back the darkness. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free...Jesus Christ (John 8:32)


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about fear and trembling

monday, April 12, 2021

When was the last time you heard a preacher talk about “fear and trembling”? Do these words no longer have any relevance in our day? I’ll admit that I don’t really like to preach about “fear and trembling”, but does that change their importance or application for our generation?


We believe the Bible is the Word of God and...we must pay careful attention to God’s message to mankind about the relevance “fear and trembling”. Why are these Biblical words of truth still relevant for us today? Why should people understand the “fear and trembling” reality of God and God’s Word? Can fear be a good thing? Can trembling with fear be a positive event in a person’s life?


Proverbs 1:7 (NLT)

7 Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.


True knowledge, true wisdom produces the fear of God. Do you believe this? When a person realizes the truth about our position and our accountability before the Almighty...we would be wise to tremble with fear before Him. This is the foundation of true knowledge and wisdom. Coming to know the reality and truth of God brings us to fear Him...why? When we come to the truth about God’s holiness and our sinful-unholiness...we tremble with fear before Him.


Romans 3:10-18 (NLT)

10 As the Scriptures say, “No one is righteous— not even one.

11 No one is truly wise; no one is seeking God.

12 All have turned away; all have become useless. No one does good, not a single one.”

13 “Their talk is foul, like the stench from an open grave. Their tongues are filled with lies.” “Snake venom drips from their lips.”

14 “Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.”

15 “They rush to commit murder.

16 Destruction and misery always follow them.

17 They don’t know where to find peace.”

18 “They have no fear of God at all.”


Without God’s mercy, none of us will ever know how to find true and lasting peace with Him. Without the Word of God, the Truth of God, and the Spirit of God, none of us would know how to find forgiveness of our sins. Leaving us to live our lives in fearful expectation of God’s coming judgment.


John 16:8-11 (NLT)

8 And when he [Holy Spirit] comes, he will convict the world of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment. 9 The world’s sin is that it refuses to believe in me.

10 Righteousness is available because I go to the Father, and you will see me no more.

11 Judgment will come because the ruler of this world has already been judged.


“Fear and trembling” brought Moses to the burning bush to find the perfect will of God in the Old Testament. “Fear and trembling” brought Peter to a place where he would encounter the Truth...giving Peter a Good News/Gospel message from God that would turn our “fear and trembling” into worship, forgiveness, peace and celebration.


Luke 5:8 (NLT)

8 When Simon Peter realized what had happened, he fell to his knees before Jesus and said, “Oh, Lord, please leave me—I’m too much of a sinner to be around you.”


When Peter saw his sinful self...next to the holiness of Jesus he experienced his “fear and trembling moment”. It was in that “fear and trembling moment” that Jesus changed Peter’s life. When people lose or refuse the fear of God, they will naturally lose their fear of sin and sin’s judgment before God. This creates a since of arrogance and rebellion before God instead of heart of repentance that seeks the mercy and grace of God through Jesus Christ the Son.


We come to Christ with “fear and trembling”, but we leave His presence with forgiveness, peace, grace and mercy. The “fear and trembling” is real and let us never forget who He is and the revelation of who we are without Him.


Philippians 2:12-13 (NIV)

12 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed--not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence--continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling,

13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.


I admit today that my heart experiences “fear and trembling” at the thought of standing before God without having made peace with Him in advance. I fear and tremble at the thought of encountering God while still in my sin, unforgiven. This is why we gladly receive God’s Word of Truth that tells us to confess our sins and repent of those sins so we might find peace with God. I tremble with fear and at the thought of hearing Him say to me or to anyone else, “Depart from Me, for I don’t know you”.


This is why we continue to preach the Good News of Jesus Christ, yes, even with “fear and trembling” today. This is why we come to God daily, with “fear and trembling”. Not only for ourselves but for those who do not yet know the Almighty and Holy God that we will all one day stand before.


Hebrews 4:1-2 (NLT)

1 God’s promise of entering his rest still stands, so we ought to tremble with fear that some of you might fail to experience it. 2 For this good news—that God has prepared this rest—has been announced to us just as it was to them. But it did them no good because they didn’t share the faith of those who listened to God.


I tremble in fear for those who have and will refuse to enter into God’s rest by making peace with God...by placing their faith and trust in Jesus Christ the Son. We tremble in fear, but this fear becomes our motivation to share this Good News. God did not send His Son-Jesus to condemn us and leave us in “fear and trembling”. God sent His Son to the world to save us and bring His fearful and trembling children into His glorious and eternal freedom and rest.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A Word from terry

about "what Now"

monday, april 5, 2021

The tomb is empty! What now? Christians are coming out of our biggest worship celebration of the year. But we are left with the question, “what now”? Yes, it is fitting that we stop and reflect on the events of Passion Week where Jesus suffered, was crucified, and rose from the dead, but what now? What did it all mean? “What now”?


Jesus told his followers what was going to happen in advance to help us deal with this “what now” question when the events of our time come. It’s important for us to understand that Jesus revealed coming events in advance so that we know that He was indeed who He claimed to be, the Son of God. For example, Jesus told his followers about Jerusalem’s cross long before He went to Jerusalem...so they might be prepared for “what now”.


Matthew 16:21 (NLT)

21 From then on Jesus began to tell his disciples plainly that it was necessary for him to go to Jerusalem, and that he would suffer many terrible things at the hands of the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but on the third day he would be raised from the dead.


He told them all of this in advance so His followers would be prepared when their “what now” moment came, even though they might be hard to comprehend at the time. All the things that Jesus told them about His suffering in Jerusalem came true, exactly as He had told them.


But “what now”? What about after the cross? What about after the resurrection from the dead? Jesus appeared to His followers several times during the 40 days following the crucifixion. During one of those post-resurrection meetings Jesus told them to wait. When Jesus’ disciples said “what now”...Jesus said wait...the Gift is coming.


Acts 1:4-5 (NLT)

4 Once when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before.

5 John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”


What now? Jesus has suffered, been crucified and raised from the dead...”what now”? The disciples were told to wait for the Holy Spirit to come. They would be unable to complete their “what now” mission of Christ without the Holy Spirit’s power and presence.


But what about us today? It’s been some 2000 years. What now? We believe in the sufferings of Christ. We believe in the resurrection of Jesus as the Son of God and Savior of the world. We waited for the Holy Spirit and the Spirit has come...calling us to Christ. We have placed our faith and trust in Him, and we have received the Holy Spirit of Christ by being born again of the water and the Spirit. But “what now”?


The final verses from the Gospels of Matthew and Mark reveal the answer to today’s question “what now”...from Jesus himself.


Matthew 28:18-20 (NLT)

Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.

19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”


These are our “what now” instructions from Jesus. Go and make disciples all over the earth. Baptize them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Teach them the Holy Scriptures and live your life in obedience to those Scriptures. Go in the power of Christ. These are our “what now” instructions from Jesus.


The celebrations of Passion Week were incredible. The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ has revealed our victory over mankind’s greatest enemy...sin and death. But this message of freedom must be shared with the world. This is our “what now” assignment from Jesus Christ. Yes, we believe in the events of passion week and yes, we have put our faith and trust in Jesus. But that is not the end of our mission, it is the beginning to our great adventure with Christ. We must now love our neighbor as ourselves by sharing this glorious, good news with anyone and everyone. But how? The Holy Spirit will show us how. We must understand that this message is urgent and the consequences of rejecting this message are more horrible than anyone can imagine.


Mark 16:15-16 (NLT)

15 And then he told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.

16 Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved. But anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned.


Jesus has told us this in advance so that we would live our “what now” moments by honoring Him and His Word. One last advance Word from Jesus today. This one is still to come...and when this day comes, you can ask Him “what now” personally.


John 14:3 (NLT)

When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the mercy seat and easter

monday, march 29, 2021

Let’s begin in the Old Testament and work our way up to the glorious resurrection of Easter Sunday. When God called Moses to build the Tabernacle in the wilderness, He was very specific about the furniture that would be inside the Tabernacle. There is something very interesting and revealing about the cover that would be placed over the Ark of the Covenant in the Most Holy Place. The Ark’s cover was called the Place of Atonement or the Mercy Seat. It is the place where God would come to meet with and speak to the people of Israel.


Exodus 25:17-22 (NLT)

17 “Then make the Ark’s cover—the place of atonement—from pure gold. It must be 45 inches long and 27 inches wide.

18 Then make two cherubim from hammered gold, and place them on the two ends of the atonement cover.

19 Mold the cherubim on each end of the atonement cover, making it all of one piece of gold.

20 The cherubim will face each other and look down on the atonement cover. With their wings spread above it, they will protect it.

21 Place inside the Ark the stone tablets inscribed with the terms of the covenant, which I will give to you. Then put the atonement cover on top of the Ark.

22 I will meet with you there and talk to you from above the atonement cover between the gold cherubim that hover over the Ark of the Covenant. From there I will give you my commands for the people of Israel.


The Ark contained the Word of God on stone tablets. The Ark of the Covenant...revealing the covenant that God had made with Abraham, Israel and the nations of the world. Above the Ark was the Place of Atonement, the Mercy Seat of God. The place where God would come and meet with His people and speak to them from the Mercy Seat. The Word of God was on the inside of the Ark and the Word of God would be spoken from the Atonement Cover above the Ark. This was God’s place of revelation and mercy.


The Atonement Cover (Mercy Seat) was made of pure gold and there were golden cherubim (angels), one on each end of the Mercy Seat. The angels faced each other and looked down at the place where God would meet with the people. God would be enthroned between the two angels. The angels would look down in wonder at the mercy of God that would be revealed to the people from the Mercy Seat of God’s presence.


You must understand that everything in the Old Testament is revealing or pointing to the Messiah-Jesus. Can you see Jesus in the Ark and the Atonement Cover? The Ark and the Tabernacle were built by Moses some 1500 years before the time of Christ, but can you see Jesus there?

Let’s fast forward to Resurrection Day...the Sunday morning when Jesus rose from the dead. Mary has gone to the tomb of Jesus to anoint the body, but instead, she finds the Mercy Seat of God, the place of our Atonement.


John 20:11-12 (NLT)

11 Mary was standing outside the tomb crying, and as she wept, she stooped and looked in.

12 She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying.


Can you see it? Two angels, one on each end, looking down at the place of our Atonement. Two angels revealing the Mercy Seat of God. These angels were not made of gold, but they revealed the same event. I will meet with you there and talk to you from above the atonement cover between the gold cherubim that hover over the Ark of the Covenant (Exodus 25:22).


Jesus is the Mercy Seat! Jesus is our Place of Atonement. Jesus is the only way for us to enter into and participate in the eternal Covenant that God made with Abraham. This is the covenant of life...the promise of God for the children of God. This is the promise of the resurrection into eternal life for all who will put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.


The tomb was empty. Today, we can approach God by way of this Mercy Seat called Jesus. He is our Atonement, the payment for our sin. He is our resurrection, and He is our life. His grave is empty and one day...ours will be as well.


John 11:25-26 (NLT)

25 Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying.

26 Everyone who lives in me and believes in me will never ever die.


How beautiful is this Mercy Seat of God! Jesus is still speaking to us from the empty tomb today...Follow Me, receive my Mercy and follow Me!


I pray that each of you will celebrate the wonderful mercy of God that has been freely offered to us by the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ our Lord. He is risen!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about palm branches

monday, march 22, 2021

This Sunday will be Palm Sunday, the day that we remember and celebrate Jesus’ final entry into Jerusalem on His way to the cross. Palm Sunday is named this way because the people of Jerusalem threw down palm branches in front of Jesus as He entered the city. This was how the Jewish people would celebrate a king’s entry into the holy city. Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem was that of the victorious King of Israel.


John 12:12-15 (NLT) The next day, the news that Jesus was on the way to Jerusalem swept through the city. A large crowd of Passover visitors

13 took palm branches and went down the road to meet him. They shouted, “Praise God! Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the LORD! Hail to the King of Israel!”

14 Jesus found a young donkey and rode on it, fulfilling the prophecy that said:

15 “Don’t be afraid, people of Jerusalem. Look, your King is coming, riding on a donkey’s colt.”


Hail to the King of Israel! In that moment, Jesus was fulfilling the 500-year-old prophecy of Zechariah. Rejoice, O people of Zion! Shout in triumph, O people of Jerusalem! Look, your king is coming to you. He is righteous and victorious, yet he is humble, riding on a donkey— riding on a donkey’s colt. Zechariah 9:9 (NLT)


A king on a donkey? A humble king on a donkey, yes, but still a King. The crowd that threw down palm branches and declared Jesus as their King would cry out “crucify him” some 5 days later.


All four gospels record that Jesus was revealed as King as He entered Jerusalem that day. But John is the only gospel that specifically refers to the branches as “Palm Branches”. Do you know there are only two specific records of palm branches in the New Testament? And Jesus is revealed as the King in both scenes! Both are in the writings of the Apostle John. The first one has already occurred and the second one is coming soon.


Revelation 7:9-10 (NLT) After this I saw a vast crowd, too great to count, from every nation and tribe and people and language, standing in front of the throne and before the Lamb. They were clothed in white robes and held palm branches in their hands.

10 And they were shouting with a mighty shout, “Salvation comes from our God who sits on the throne and from the Lamb!”


The Prophet Zechariah announced a time when a great King would come into Jerusalem on a donkey. You can check that one off the list. Prophecy fulfilled! The humble and great King Jesus came and willingly died on the cross of Calvary to save the world from sin, death and eternal separation from God.


And here we are today, some 2000 years later and the believers in Christ are anxiously waiting for the final fulfillment of these prophetic palm branches. Jesus won’t be on a donkey the next time he comes to Jerusalem. He won’t be coming as a servant to give up His life the next time. The same Apostle John says Jesus will come as a conquering King on a white horse the next time.


Revelation 19:11-12 (NLT) Then I saw heaven opened, and a white horse was standing there. Its rider was named Faithful and True, for he judges fairly and wages a righteous war.

12 His eyes were like flames of fire, and on his head were many crowns. A name was written on him that no one understood except himself.


When Jesus comes to Jerusalem this next time it will be to make war against all those who have refused to accept Him as their King. To refuse this coming King is to refuse His coming Kingdom. This next time...Jesus will be seated on the throne of David in Jerusalem as King of kings with all power, dominion and authority belonging to Him. The same Prophet Zechariah reveals that Jesus will return and stand upon the Mount of Olives, just outside the Eastern Gate of Jerusalem.


Zechariah 14:4 and 14:9 (NLT) On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem. And the Mount of Olives will split apart, making a wide valley running from east to west. Half the mountain will move toward the north and half toward the south....9 And the LORD will be king over all the earth. On that day there will be one LORD—his name alone will be worshiped.


This Sunday, Palm Sunday, will be our chance to remember and celebrate our King’s entry into Jerusalem some 2000 years ago. We plan to celebrate and worship not only the One that was...King in Jerusalem past... but we celebrate and worship the One that is to come...On that day there will be one LORD-his name alone will be worshipped. Our King Jesus.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about a weak reed

monday, March 15, 2021

If you’ve studied the Bible, you would come to the conclusion that John the Baptist was a controversial character. Yes, he was a holy man of God, sent to prepare the way for Jesus the Messiah. But that doesn’t change the fact that he was received by his culture with mixed emotions. Some loved John and accepted him and his teaching as from the Lord. But others despised John and were happy when King Herod had him beheaded. Jesus reveals this divide regarding John the Baptist and his authority.


Mark 11:29-33 (NLT)

29 “I’ll tell you by what authority I do these things if you answer one question,” Jesus replied.

30 “Did John’s authority to baptize come from heaven, or was it merely human? Answer me!”

31 They talked it over among themselves. “If we say it was from heaven, he will ask why we didn’t believe John.

32 But do we dare say it was merely human?” For they were afraid of what the people would do, because everyone believed that John was a prophet.

33 So they finally replied, “We don’t know.” And Jesus responded, “Then I won’t tell you by what authority I do these things.”


It’s a question of “authority”. Did John receive his authority from God? Does Jesus have the authority of God? It’s a question of authority, absolute authority. Some accepted John’s authority as from God, but others rejected John’s authority as merely human authority.


That brings me to my point for today. Jesus is the One that gives John authority and validates his authority by saying that John was greater than all that had been born on the earth (Matthew 11:11). That’s quite a statement coming from Jesus. Then Jesus reveals something that should be of great concern for the modern church of America. It’s a question of authority.


Matthew 11:7 (NLT)

7 As John’s disciples were leaving, Jesus began talking about him to the crowds. “What kind of man did you go into the wilderness to see? Was he a weak reed, swayed by every breath of wind?


It’s a question of authority. Great crowds of people went into the wilderness to seek a Word of Truth from God. It’s a question of authority. These great crowds would not travel into the wilderness to listen to a weak reed that was swayed by political or social pressure. No, they were in search for Truth. But that Truth came with at a great cost, with much opposition. There were many that would reject that Truth and its authority. There were many that preferred the “weak reed” version of the truth...one that could be swayed and manipulated by politics and social powers. But John was not a weak reed preacher.


Jesus said...the crowds didn’t go into the wilderness to be entertained by fancy people in fancy clothes. They were not seeking a word from man or a word of human authority! They were seeking a Word from God...a Word of Truth...not a weak reed that was constantly being bent by the pressures of their cultural elites.


But what is the cost of this truth? John found himself in prison for preaching the unbending Truth. Weak reeds never go to jail. The world is never threatened by the authority of the weak reeds dressed in their fancy clothes. But the world has always resisted God’s absolute authority...delivered by those whose message is not swayed by the winds of culture or politics.


Matthew 11:8-10 (NLT)

8 Or were you expecting to see a man dressed in expensive clothes? No, people with expensive clothes live in palaces.

9 Were you looking for a prophet? Yes, and he is more than a prophet.

10 John is the man to whom the Scriptures refer when they say, ‘Look, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, and he will prepare your way before you.’


You could never call John the Baptist a people pleasing preacher. John preached in the power of the Spirit and John preached with absolute power and authority...never apologizing for the Truth. Can you imagine how John’s message would go over in most churches today?


Matthew 3:7-10 (NLT)

7 But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming to watch him baptize, he denounced them. “You brood of snakes!” he exclaimed. “Who warned you to flee God’s coming wrath?

8 Prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins and turned to God.

9 Don’t just say to each other, ‘We’re safe, for we are descendants of Abraham.’ That means nothing, for I tell you, God can create children of Abraham from these very stones.

10 Even now the ax of God’s judgment is poised, ready to sever the roots of the trees. Yes, every tree that does not produce good fruit will be chopped down and thrown into the fire.


It’s a question of authority. Truth is not like a weak reed. Truth does not bend to political or social pressure. Truth remains true...regardless of the cost. Human authority always bends to human pressure, but heavenly authority never bends. The people of our time still need the Truth from heaven’s authority...not human authority and entertaining opinions. Weak reeds will never reveal the Truth that will save us. It’s a question of authority!


By the grace and mercy of God and by the authority and power of the Holy Spirit...God is still calling men to preach the Truth and they will not bend to human authority. Because weak reeds always break in the end.


Our mission today is clear. We, like John before us, were called to prepare the way for the coming of the Lord.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the curtain

monday, March 8, 2021

There are five verses at the very end of Exodus that intrigue me. The last five verses reveal something that can give great encouragement to each of us today. Before I show you the final 5 verses, let me give you the context. The craftsman of Israel had just finished all the furnishings for the Tabernacle of the Lord. God had given Moses specific instruction about building a mobile structure where God would come down and dwell among his people, the Tabernacle.


The blueprints of this Tabernacle were given to Moses in great detail. Exodus chapter 40 reveals the time when the Tabernacle furnishings were completed, and now it was time for Moses to set it up for the first time.


Exodus 40:1-3 (NLT)

1 Then the LORD said to Moses,

2 “Set up the Tabernacle on the first day of the new year.

3 Place the Ark of the Covenant inside, and install the inner curtain to enclose the Ark within the Most Holy Place.


Behind the curtain, inside the Most Holy Place was the Ark. The Ark of the Covenant, the Covenant Promise of God. The Ark represented the throne of God that was placed behind the curtain. The place where the glory of the Lord would descend from heaven and dwell among the people of Israel. Can you imagine the anticipation as they were setting up the Tabernacle this first time, on New Year’s Day? Now, I want you to read the last five verses of the Book of Exodus.


Exodus 40:34-38 (NLT)

34 Then the cloud covered the Tabernacle, and the glory of the LORD filled the Tabernacle.

35 Moses could no longer enter the Tabernacle because the cloud had settled down over it, and the glory of the LORD filled the Tabernacle.

36 Now whenever the cloud lifted from the Tabernacle, the people of Israel would set out on their journey, following it.

37 But if the cloud did not rise, they remained where they were until it lifted.

38 The cloud of the LORD hovered over the Tabernacle during the day, and at night fire glowed inside the cloud so the whole family of Israel could see it. This continued throughout all their journeys.


Everything was now set for the Israelites to begin their journey through the wilderness to find their home in the Promised Land. All they had to do was follow the Glory! God’s glory was dwelling among His people. The glory of the Lord revealed a time to move and a time to remain. The whole family of Israel could see it (the glory). This continued throughout all their journeys.


I have come to realize that everything in the Old Testament eventually reveals Jesus! They set up the Tabernacle on the first day of the new year...representing the first day of their new life in the glorious presence of God. Can you see Jesus in this scene from the end of Exodus? Yes, Moses was their deliverer, but he was only a preview of The True Deliverer that was to come. This scene with Moses and the Tabernacle is about 1500 years before the time of Christ, but I can see Jesus in this scene.


Moses was unable to enter the Tabernacle when the glory of the Lord came down into the Tabernacle, to occupy the Mercy Seat. Moses and the people must remain at a distance, unable to move out toward the Promised Land while the glory was inside the Tabernacle. So, how does this scene reveal Jesus?


What was behind the curtain in the Most Holy Place...the glorious presence of God, but no one could enter God’s presence. No one was worthy, not even Moses. Not until this:


Mark 15:37-38 (NLT)

37 Then Jesus uttered another loud cry and breathed his last.

38 And the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom.


Can you see it? The death of Jesus on the cross tore the curtain that separated us from the glorious presence of God. Now, through the sacrificial blood of Jesus, we can enter the Most Holy Place of God’s presence.


Hebrews 10:19-25 (NLT)

19 And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven’s Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus.

20 By his death, Jesus opened a new and life-giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place.

21 And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house,

22 let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water.

23 Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.

24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.

25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.


Through Christ, we now have everything we need to successfully navigate our wilderness journeys on our way to the Promised Land. Jesus’ death on the cross opened up a new and life-giving way into the Most Holy Place of God’s presence. The curtain is His Body...He is the only way to enter the glory of the Father.


The Promised Land is not so far from here...just on the other side of that Curtain.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the ruling class

monday, march 1, 2021

The Book of Acts describes the supernatural events that surrounded the birth of the Church that operated under the power and authority of the Holy Spirit. Chapter 5 reveals a series of events that can offer great instruction to the church today, in the midst of a pandemic and ever-increasing government restrictions.


The story begins with jealousy. The religious leaders and local governmental authorities (the ruling class) became jealous at all the attention that was being put on this new church movement in Jerusalem. Something was happening to cause the ruling class to become terribly jealous and envious. There was a new source of authority in town. Peter and the other apostles were revealing a new source of authority and power as they preached the gospel of Jesus Christ to the people. The people started to turn their attention away from the authority of the ruling class by placing their faith and trust in this new authority that was being revealed by Peter and the other apostles. Many were trusting in the name of Jesus Christ, as the source of this newly revealed power and authority.


This created a fierce jealousy from the ruling class, and they took action by jailing these preaching apostles. Well, at least they tried to put them in jail...


Acts 5:17-21 (NLT)

17 The high priest and his officials, who were Sadducees, were filled with jealousy.

18 They arrested the apostles and put them in the public jail.

19 But an angel of the Lord came at night, opened the gates of the jail, and brought them out. Then he told them,

20 “Go to the Temple and give the people this message of life!”

21 So at daybreak the apostles entered the Temple, as they were told, and immediately began teaching.


The Lord intervened in this jealous dispute between the ruling class and the preaching apostles. The Lord opened the jail and told the apostle to go back to preaching the gospel message of Christ. The Apostles obeyed God and returned to the Temple to continue their preaching.


Remember, this conflict was all based on the jealousy of the ruling class. There was a new power, a new authority being revealed in Jerusalem and that new power and authority was a big problem for the ruling class. The people were looking elsewhere for truth and meaning to their lives.


But the ruling class was still the ruling class. They had the apostles arrested again and this time they were called into their ruling class courtroom. The jealous ruling class demanded that the preaching apostles stop preaching about this other power named Jesus.


Acts 5:27-28 (NLT)

27 Then they brought the apostles before the high council, where the high priest confronted them.

28 “Didn’t we tell you never again to teach in this man’s name?” he demanded. “Instead, you have filled all Jerusalem with your teaching about him, and you want to make us responsible for his death!”


Jealousy is a powerful emotion. Peter and the other apostles were revealing a new power in Jerusalem and to the whole world. Peter and the others were actually operating under this new power and authority (Holy Spirit). The ruling class was losing their power over the people. The ruling class demanded that Peter and the others stop this preaching in the name of Jesus, but the apostles had personally experienced the power of Jesus’ name, in person and now in the Spirit. How could they now stop speaking about this great power?


Acts 5:29 (NLT)

29 But Peter and the apostles replied, “We must obey God rather than any human authority.


We can call this the moment of truth...when we must decide the limits of human authority when placed alongside God’s authority and calling. Remember, the apostles had already been put in jail once. How do you think the ruling class is going to deal with this refusal to bow to their authority?


Acts 5:33 (NLT)

33 When they heard this, the high council was furious and decided to kill them.


Can you see it? This is what happens when the ruling class is threatened by a power that is greater than any power on earth. A great power that has all dominion and authority in heaven and on earth. In their jealousy, the ruling class tries to silence the truth so they might remain the ruling class.


But they didn’t kill the apostles, not yet anyway. One of the ruling class, named Gamaliel stepped in and convinced the people to take a “wait and see” approach to this new teaching about Jesus.


Acts 5:38-39 (NLT)

38 “So my advice is, leave these men alone. Let them go. If they are planning and doing these things merely on their own, it will soon be overthrown.

39 But if it is from God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You may even find yourselves fighting against God!”


Did this stop their jealousy? No! They were still jealous because this Gospel message of Jesus Christ was revealing a power and authority beyond any man or governmental authority. So, they had the apostles flogged and then released them with this warning:


Acts 5:40 (NLT)

40 The others accepted his advice. They called in the apostles and had them flogged. Then they ordered them never again to speak in the name of Jesus, and they let them go.


This is the main reason for today’s letter...will the apostles submit to the ruling class after they’ve been jailed and beaten?


Acts 5:41-42 (NLT)

41 The apostles left the high council rejoicing that God had counted them worthy to suffer disgrace for the name of Jesus.

42 And every day, in the Temple and from house to house, they continued to teach and preach this message: “Jesus is the Messiah.”


They kept preaching! Yes, they were jailed, flogged and threatened, but they kept preaching. Why...because they had experienced a power that is greater than any human authority and they could no longer remain silent. They had encountered Jesus Christ, the very Son of God. How could anyone who knows the truth be silent about that? Jesus is the Messiah!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about love vs. perishing

monday, february 22, 2021

God is love. Everything about God is based on love. He is the definition of love. God invented love and He demonstrates love by His divine presence and His divine Word.


John 3:16 (NLT)

“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.


God’s great love was demonstrated when He gave His one and only Son-Jesus to keep us from perishing. Have you ever wondered what perishing really means? Love vs. Perishing. God’s love sent His Son...for one expressed purpose...to keep us from perishing.


I noticed that every major English translation uses the word “perish” in that verse. From God’s perspective...Jesus was God’s love that prevented and overcame human perishing. So, what is human perishing...DEATH! And what is DEATH? Death is the absence of God’s love. Death is the rejection of God’s love. Death is the rejection of God’s Son-Jesus. Rejecting God’s Son is to reject God’s love. This is what it means to perish.


Does perish mean that a person will cease to exist? Does this perishing death mean that we cease to exist, a fade to black unconsciousness? No! There is a second death, and it is worse than the first death. The second death is to perish, but it is not an unconsciousness. It is hell, a place of terror and great suffering. The graves (the first death) will give up their dead so they might experience the absence of God which is the second death in hell. This is what it means to perish. This is the unimaginable terror that awaits those who have rejected God’s love that was given through God’s Son-Jesus. They will perish.


Revelation 20:13-15 (NLT)

13 The sea gave up its dead, and death and the grave gave up their dead. And all were judged according to their deeds. 14 Then death and the grave were thrown into the lake of fire. This lake of fire is the second death. 15 And anyone whose name was not found recorded in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire.


The truth is this...we are all from the corrupted seed of Adam. Sin, death, and mortality entered the world through Adam. Our mortality means we are subject to death (we are all dying). This applies to everyone. We are all PERISHABLE, mortal and subject to death. God’s love made a way for us to become IMPERISHABLE, immortal and no longer subject to death (eternal life).


But how? God’s love and God’s substitutionary sacrifice of Jesus on the cross made a way for us to never be separated from God, the very source of life and immortality (eternal life). We have all sinned against God and the blood of Christ offers a sufficient payment for our sins and makes peace with God. By placing our faith in the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ we are born again. But this time, we are kept from perishing by the presence of Christ in our lives. The perishable has become imperishable. This is eternal life.


1 Peter 1:23 (NIV)

23 For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.


Love vs. Perishing. Wrath vs. Peace. Forgiven vs. Unforgiven. Born again vs. Second death. People might disagree on many things, but one thing is undeniable. We are all mortal. We are all perishing. The question is this...what happens after that?


Hebrews 9:27-28 (NLT)

27 And just as each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment,

28 so also Christ died once for all time as a sacrifice to take away the sins of many people. He will come again, not to deal with our sins, but to bring salvation to all who are eagerly waiting for him.


I suppose that’s why the Gospel of Jesus Christ is called “Good News”. Love vs Perishing. God is not willing that any of us would perish, but that we would all come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9) and place our faith in Jesus. The presence of Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit changes us from the inside out and prepares us to meet Him. We must continue in this faith even if we face great opposition or suffering. Knowing this...God’s judgment and wrath is coming for who refuse His love by denying the Son. They will perish!


Hebrews 10:26-31 (NLT)

26 Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice that will cover these sins.

27 There is only the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies.

28 For anyone who refused to obey the law of Moses was put to death without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.

29 Just think how much worse the punishment will be for those who have trampled on the Son of God, and have treated the blood of the covenant, which made us holy, as if it were common and unholy, and have insulted and disdained the Holy Spirit who brings God’s mercy to us.

30 For we know the one who said, “I will take revenge. I will pay them back.” He also said, “The LORD will judge his own people.”

31 It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about snow and ice

monday, february 15, 2021

It’s Monday morning and the snow has fallen overnight. Freezing rain was falling on my car as I was driving to church and I couldn’t keep my windshield cleaned off. Our family was without electricity two days this past week and I can’t help but wonder if it will happen again because of this next round of snow and ice from the heavens.


From the heavens...this stuff falling out of the sky has the power to stop our plans and redirect our thinking. Can anyone stop the snow? Can the government step in and call it off? Can anyone overpower the freezing rain that breaks the trees and stops the flow of electricity? What is this power from the heavens? Can mankind control the climate and direct the power of the heavens? Is it a random heavenly power or does it have a source and a designer?


The Book of Job talks a lot about snow and ice. Job’s friend, Elihu, used the power of snow and ice to remind Job about the source of power in the heavens and compares it to “the breath of God”.


Job 37:6-10 (NLT)

6 “He directs the snow to fall on the earth and tells the rain to pour down.

7 Then everyone stops working so they can watch his power.

8 The wild animals take cover and stay inside their dens.

9 The stormy wind comes from its chamber, and the driving winds bring the cold.

10 God’s breath sends the ice, freezing wide expanses of water.


God’s breath sends the ice...did you think of that when the ice storm came this past week? These ice storms surely have the power to humble us and our plans. We usually associate the breath of God with life, but the breath of God can also breathe ice and snow for He alone is the source and power of all creation.


From the heavens come sunlight and darkness, snow and rain, heat and cold. From the heavens come the breath of life and the breath of ice...all from the heavens. Do you think about that when it snows? Does the winter storm reveal the awesome and overwhelming power of God?


Do you think of this power in the heavens when things of life become difficult and heavy? God came to speak to Job when his life was difficult and heavy. God came to Job with questions...questions about the heavens...questions that would be good for us to examine in our day as well.


Job 38:19-21 (NLT)

19 “Where does light come from, and where does darkness go?

20 Can you take each to its home? Do you know how to get there?

21 But of course you know all this! For you were born before it was all created, and you are so very experienced!


Do you know the answers to these questions from the God of Heaven? As you can see, God is mocking the so-called wisdom and intelligence of man that refuses to acknowledge the eternal power of God. And then God brings up the snow to Job...with a question that could truly help us today.


Job 38:22-24 (NLT)

22 “Have you visited the storehouses of the snow or seen the storehouses of hail?

23 (I have reserved them as weapons for the time of trouble, for the day of battle and war.)

24 Where is the path to the source of light? Where is the home of the east wind?


The breath of God...the breath that can breathe life is also the breath that can breathe judgment. God is revealing this truth to Job because He loves Job. God wants to save Job and to bless Job by revealing the Truth to Job.


God is love and His Word is Truth and only the Truth can set us free...free from the judgment of God. Truth has a name-Jesus! God revealed this truth to Job in the form of a question and then God gave Job time to answer him. This is Job’s answer...


Job 40:1-5 (NLT)

1 Then the LORD said to Job,

2 “Do you still want to argue with the Almighty? You are God’s critic, but do you have the answers?”

3 Then Job replied to the LORD,

4 “I am nothing—how could I ever find the answers? I will cover my mouth with my hand.

5 I have said too much already. I have nothing more to say.”


This is the answer of a holy man of God that understands truth. Job covers his mouth and understands that the power of God in the heavens is overwhelming in the sight of man. Job was speechless...I have nothing more to say.


The words of man cannot compare to the Word of God when He speaks. We cannot stop the Word of God and its purpose and fulfillment any more than we can stop the snow from falling out of the heavens. We can only accept its truth and power. The Prophet Isaiah reveals the power of the Word


Isaiah 55:10-11 (NLT)

10 “The rain and snow come down from the heavens and stay on the ground to water the earth. They cause the grain to grow, producing seed for the farmer and bread for the hungry.

11 It is the same with my word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it.


Like Job, I have nothing more to say...except...Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about noah's siblings

tuesday, february 9, 2021

I was reading from the Book of Genesis a few days ago when something hit me. I have read this particular section many times, but this time something hit me. It hit me like a rock when I read this one verse.


Genesis 5:30 (NLT)

30 After the birth of Noah, Lamech lived another 595 years, and he had other sons and daughters.


Do you see it? Let me explain...Lamech was the father of Noah and Noah had several brothers and sisters. That’s what hit me. Noah had brothers and sisters and those brothers and sisters are not recorded with those who survived the judgment of God. They didn’t make it...when the judgment of God fell upon the earth, the brothers and sisters of Noah didn’t survive.


Some might suggest that the brothers and sisters of Noah might have died before the flood and that is possible, but not probable because it looks like Noah was probably the oldest of his siblings. According to the Answers in Genesis timeline, it looks like Noah’s father, Lamech, died some 5 years before the flood. But what about Noah’s siblings. This hit me like a rock!


Do you know why this one verse in Genesis affected me so? Because of this next verse from the Gospel of Matthew, the words of Jesus recorded thousands of years after the flood of Noah.


Matthew 24:37 (NLT)

37 “When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah’s day.


Do those two verses from the Bible hit you, convict you? There were members of Noah’s family that didn’t survive the judgment of God. Jesus said it will be like that again, when He comes. This is not the only time that Jesus brings up this horrible thought. Jesus told us the last days would also produce divisions inside the family.


Luke 12:51-53 (NLT)

51 Do you think I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I have come to divide people against each other! 52 From now on families will be split apart, three in favor of me, and two against—or two in favor and three against. 53 ‘Father will be divided against son and son against father; mother against daughter and daughter against mother; and mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.’”


Noah’s family is an example of the families that will be alive at the time of Jesus’ return. The One that came to bring peace to the earth has actually become the One that will divide the people of the earth into two camps...believers and unbelievers, the saved and the lost.


It's not like Noah’s siblings didn’t know...he must have told them about the coming judgment of God as he was building the ark that would have saved them. He warned them, but what happened? Did they refuse to listen to the warning? Did they refuse to believe that the rain was coming?


2 Peter 2:5 (NLT)

5 And God did not spare the ancient world—except for Noah and the seven others in his family. Noah warned the world of God’s righteous judgment. So God protected Noah when he destroyed the world of ungodly people with a vast flood.


Only 8 people were saved. That is a shocking statistic! Noah’s siblings are not recorded among the saved. That is a shocking revelation. And Jesus said His coming will be like it was in the days of Noah. That truth convicts my soul. I am convicted to tell as many people as possible about the judgment of God that is surely coming to the earth. No one knows the day or the hour, but God’s mercy gave a prophetic warning to the people of Noah’s day and the Bible has also given a prophetic warning to the people of our generation.


Mark 13:32-33 (NLT)

32 “However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows. 33 And since you don’t know when that time will come, be on guard! Stay alert!


I officiated the funeral service of my 83-year-old mother yesterday. All of our family was there at the service. We have a very large family and as I stood up front, I couldn’t help but think about Noah’s family and the words of Jesus. I can’t imagine the thought of one of my family members not making it to heaven. I can’t imagine the thought of one of my family members left behind when Jesus comes for the church. This thought is very heavy for me today as I mourn the passing of my mother.


So, what do we do in light of this Biblical revelation? We preach the Word of God and we proclaim the love and grace of God that is freely offered today for all who will put their faith in Jesus Christ. We warn people about the coming judgment and we stay alert and watch....because one day soon. It’s gonna rain!


Luke 21:34-36 (NLT)

34 “Watch out! Don’t let your hearts be dulled by carousing and drunkenness, and by the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware, 35 like a trap. For that day will come upon everyone living on the earth. 36 Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the time of the end

monday, february 1, 2021

The Prophet Daniel lived more than 500 years before the time of Christ and His first coming. God gave Daniel much understanding about The Time of the End that would find its fulfillment in Jesus’ second coming. The final chapter of Daniel reveals something that Jesus also brings up some 500 years later. I would like to compare Daniel’s wording in chapter 12 to Jesus’ wording in Matthew 24.


Daniel 12:1 (NLT)

“At that time Michael, the archangel who stands guard over your nation, will arise. Then there will be a time of anguish greater than any since nations first came into existence.


Matthew 24:21 (NLT)

For there will be greater anguish than at any time since the world began. And it will never be so great again.


Daniel and Jesus are both referring to the same time and events that will create worldwide anguish during The Time of the End. Daniel goes on to describe two groups of people that will be alive in The Time of the End. There will be those who are wise and those who are foolish. This wisdom will be from God, not man. God’s wisdom will reveal The Time of the End, but only to those who have received the wisdom and truth of God by placing their faith in Jesus Christ. This wisdom that is promised to those in The Time of the End will produce something that the foolish world will not understand. In fact, the foolish world will actually see this wisdom as utter foolishness.


Daniel 12:3-4 (NLT)

3 Those who are wise will shine as bright as the sky, and those who lead many to righteousness will shine like the stars forever.

4 But you, Daniel, keep this prophecy a secret; seal up the book until the time of the end, when many will rush here and there, and knowledge will increase.”

Did you notice that Daniel’s prophecy stated that knowledge and travel would increase in The Time of the End? But what about this wisdom that comes from God? There will be knowledge without wisdom in The Time of the End. Those who are wise will shine as bright as the sky because their wisdom is from God who is the very source of light. Those who have knowledge without the wisdom of God will reject this light and revel in the darkness...not knowing that The Time of the End has come.


This revelation of God to Daniel regarding The Time of the End seemed overwhelming and Daniel asked God for clarification.

 

Daniel 12:8-10 (NLT)

8 I heard what he said, but I did not understand what he meant. So I asked, “How will all this finally end, my lord?”

9 But he said, “Go now, Daniel, for what I have said is kept secret and sealed until the time of the end.

10 Many will be purified, cleansed, and refined by these trials. But the wicked will continue in their wickedness, and none of them will understand. Only those who are wise will know what it means.


That prophecy of Daniel was written down some 2500 years ago. Jesus came to this earth some 500 years after the time of Daniel and since that time many have been purified, cleansed and refined by placing their faith in Jesus as Messiah. But, what about the trials and anguish that will come at The Time of the End? Will the wicked be able to see the truth in The Time of the End? Will the wicked finally accept the wisdom and truth of God in The Time of the End?


Even now, many are living their lives like there will be no end of time. Even now, many still reject the wisdom of God that has been revealed through Jesus Christ the Son. Even now, as the light of God’s Truth shines brightly into the darkness and sin of all mankind...the wicked continue in their wickedness and none of them seem to understand. The Apostle Paul also revealed this truth during the time of the church.


1 Corinthians 1:18-21 (NLT)

18 The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.

19 As the Scriptures say, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and discard the intelligence of the intelligent.”

20 So where does this leave the philosophers, the scholars, and the world’s brilliant debaters? God has made the wisdom of this world look foolish.

21 Since God in his wisdom saw to it that the world would never know him through human wisdom, he has used our foolish preaching to save those who believe.


Foolish preaching...that’s what the unbelieving world calls it. This foolish preaching...the Gospel of Jesus Christ...offers the only hope for mankind as we approach The Time of the End, but only the wise will understand. Yes, there will be great anguish and suffering in The Time of the End, but even in this time of anguish the wise will understand and shine like the stars in the sky.


The last chapter in Daniel’s prophecy revealed the wise and the foolish in The Time of the End and the New Testament Book of Revelation confirms those same two groups in its final chapter as well. The Lord told Daniel to seal it up until The Time of the End...and the Lord told John to reveal it...The Revelation...and only the wise will know what it means.


Revelation 22:10-13 (NLT)

10 Then he instructed me, “Do not seal up the prophetic words in this book, for the time is near.

11 Let the one who is doing harm continue to do harm; let the one who is vile continue to be vile; let the one who is righteous continue to live righteously; let the one who is holy continue to be holy.”

12 “Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds.

13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about censorship

monday, january 25, 2021

We’ve seen the “cancel culture” and now we’re witnessing the “censorship culture”. This is what happens when the people in charge don’t like the message or ideology of others. The people in power begin to cancel or censor any opposing points of view. Maybe you think this is only a political issue and it really has no affect on your family or your faith. You would be wrong!


The truth is this...the cancel and censor culture has been around since the time of Christ and yes, it has a huge impact on Christians and the church. Jesus’ prayer to the Father before his death reveals the future cancel/censorship culture that would be driven by the “evil one”-Satan”.


“Now I am coming to you. I told them many things while I was with them in this world so they would be filled with my joy. 14 I have given them your word. And the world hates them because they do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. 15 I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. 16 They do not belong to this world any more than I do. 17 Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth. 18 Just as you sent me into the world, I am sending them into the world. John 17:13-18 (NLT)


Jesus came to the earth to reveal the Word of Truth that came from God the Father. Jesus has sent the church on a mission, “I am sending them into the world”. The church has been commissioned by Christ to carry the message of Christ, the message of Truth into the world.


Jesus reveals the core issue in this battle of censorship...The Word of Truth! Jesus revealed the Word of God to world, but the world refuses to accept this Word from God because they remain under the power of the evil one.


The world that has rejected Christ will also attempt to cancel and censor anyone that tries to live and proclaim the Word of Truth. Jesus warned us that we would be hated, canceled, and censored if we hold to the Word and the Name that delivered the Word of Truth to the earth.


The Word is the Light and that Light is Christ Jesus. The Light of Christ shines into the darkness of all mankind. The people who choose to remain in the darkness will always try to cancel and censor the Word of Truth. Jesus revealed this opposition to the church in advance.


And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. 20 All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. 21 But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.” John 3:19-21 (NLT)


So, how should the church respond to this cancel and censorship culture today? Maybe we should simply take the following advice from the first century church when their rulers tried to cancel and censor them. This was their prayer...


And now, O Lord, hear their threats, and give us, your servants, great boldness in preaching your word. 30 Stretch out your hand with healing power; may miraculous signs and wonders be done through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 31 After this prayer, the meeting place shook, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Then they preached the word of God with boldness. Acts 4:29-31 (NLT)


Today, I pray that God will once again shake and awaken His Church and give us the power of the Holy Spirit to preach the Word of God with great boldness in these last days.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about waiting

Monday, January 18, 2021

I’m going to make a confession as I open up today’s letter to the church. I don’t like waiting! I’m not exactly sure when this dislike for waiting began, but I blame it on the US Army, and yes that was a long time ago. I lived on the army base with thousands of other men and ate every meal in the army mess hall (cafeteria). That meant waiting. I waited in line for every meal during my entire time in the army. I saw waiting as a waste of my time even as a young man. I saw waiting as “idle time” that was accomplishing nothing, but because I needed to eat...I waited.


I still dislike waiting. I don’t like waiting in lines at restaurants or drive through windows. I don’t like waiting in line at the grocery. I’ll admit it...I don’t like waiting! It feels like a waste of my time because I feel idle while I wait. That brings me to my real point today.

Today, I’m watching many Christians become frustrated and anxious during our time of waiting. Yes, we are waiting on our blessed hope to come from heaven and hope is always connected to waiting.


For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. 12 It teaches us to say "No" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope--the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, (Titus 2:11-13 NIV)


Today, in the midst of worldwide chaos and much despair the church waits for our blessed hope-the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. We wait in hope, we wait patiently, and we wait with great expectancy...But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently (Romans 8:25 NIV). This type of waiting is not easy, and this waiting is not a waste of our time. God never intended our “blessed hope waiting” to be idle or wasted time.


The church must not become frustrated or anxious during our time of waiting. The Bible gives us clear instruction about our time of waiting. So, what are we to do while we wait for our blessed hope in this very dark world?


We shine! We allow the light of Christ to shine through us so that we might reveal this blessed hope to the dark and hopeless world. We shine! With fear and trembling before God, we shine! This is not idle time, and this is not supposed to be wasted time. This is the time when we are called to carry the light into the darkness...shining like stars in the universe with the light and truth of Christ.


Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed--not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence--continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling,

13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose. 14 Do everything without complaining or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe 16 as you hold out the word of life--in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing. Philippians 2:12-16 (NIV)


Don’t get caught up in all this dark world’s meaningless arguing and fighting while we wait for our blessed hope. Just shine! Continue to hold out the “words of life”. Just shine! Don’t get pulled into the darkness. Just shine! Jesus declared the church to be the light of the world and we do not hide this glorious light in our time of waiting...we shine!


The Apostle Peter gives us clear instruction as we wait for the arrival of our blessed hope from heaven...And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. 15 And remember, the Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved. This is what our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom God gave him— 2 Peter 3:14-15 (NLT)


Our waiting is not wasted or idle time. This can be the greatest time for the true church of Jesus Christ. The Lord’s patience in our time of waiting is giving more and more people the time to be saved. Yes, the world is growing darker and darker...so let the light of Christ shine brighter and brighter. Just shine! While we wait...just shine!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about our nation

monday, january 11, 2021

Today’s letter will be a review of the letter that I sent out to the church on October 12, 2020. That letter specifically referred to an event that happened during our Wednesday night Roots class on October 7th. We were in session #6 of Henry Blackaby’s Experiencing God study. The topic that night was “God Speaks”.


That Wednesday night Roots session and the letter that I sent out the following Monday was nearly a month before the presidential election. It was about 3 months before the riots and chaos occurred at our nation’s capital on January 6th. In light of our current political and national circumstance...we need to read that letter again and ask ourselves this question...Does God still speak to His people? Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. 2 And now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he created the universe. (Hebrews 1:1-2 NLT)


Today, I encourage you to read that letter again and then go back and watch that video so that you might see for yourself what happened during that class. There were 207 people in that class on October 7. The first event happens about 13 minutes into the video and the second event occurred about 24 ½ minutes into that same video. This link will take you to that video.  Experiencing God, Session 6, 10-7-20, Ninevah Christian Church, Terry Cooper - YouTube


Does God still speak to His people in these last days? Yes, He still speaks to those who have ears that will listen! Jesus makes this next statement to all seven churches in Revelation, and yes, it still applies to us today. “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches. (Revelation 2:7 NLT)


The following is my letter from October 12, 2020:


A Word from Terry abut Praying for our Nation (original letter dated 10/12/20)


A strange and significant thing happened about 13 minutes into this past Wednesday night’s Roots Class at NCC. We (the whole church) have been studying “Experiencing God” and we were in week #6 and the topic for that week was “God Speaks”.


I teach the large group session in the worship center while there are several other small group sessions meeting in the other parts of the campus. I was out walking around and talking to people before the session began when I struck up a conversation with one of our faithful members. We began talking about prayer and that conversation led into him having difficulty praying for our nation. I told him that I was also having that same problem. I was able to pray for the people of our nation to come to repentance. In fact, my wife and I attended the national call to prayer and repentance rally in Washington DC just a couple of weeks ago. But I have been unable to pray that God would restore our nation as a whole. We talked about how this same dilemma of prayer came to the Prophet Jeremiah right before God came to bring judgment on the Nation of Judah. God told Jeremiah to stop praying for the nation because it was too late. The nation had crossed the point of no return. Stop praying for them! That conversation was specifically based on the following Scripture.


Jeremiah 7:16-17 (NLT)

16 “Pray no more for these people, Jeremiah. Do not weep or pray for them, and don’t beg me to help them, for I will not listen to you. 17 Don’t you see what they are doing throughout the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem?


That was not a particularly unusual conversation to have with a brother in Christ. The Holy Spirit was showing us the same thing and we shared it openly with each other. I did not find that conversation strange at all. What happens next was strange and significant! Remember the topic for that week was “God Speaks”.


About 13 minutes into my teaching session (you can go online and view it at Experiencing God, Session 6, 10-7-20, Ninevah Christian Church, Terry Cooper - YouTube) God spoke through the Word and circumstances. I was making a random and unplanned illustration about listening expectantly for God to speak when you open the Bible to read it. At that moment I held out my Bible and randomly opened it up and randomly read the first verse that I saw. Guess what verse it was...Jeremiah 7:16. The same verse that we had talked about before I came up to speak. It didn’t just happen once, it happened twice (the second time was about the 24 ½ minute mark in that video). I’ll admit that I was stunned at how God had so powerfully and physically communicated something to me and to the church in that moment.


So, what does this mean? Yes, we should continue to pray for national repentance because there are some who will still come to Christ. Yes, we should continue to do everything we can to draw people across our nation back to faith in Jesus Christ our Lord. But I am firmly convinced, now more than ever, that our nation, like Judah of old, has crossed the point of no return. There is now no more remedy for the nation. There is no cure for the nation as a whole.


Jeremiah 30:12-13 (NIV)

12 "This is what the LORD says: "'Your wound is incurable, your injury beyond healing.

13 There is no one to plead your cause, no remedy for your sore, no healing for you.


I am almost certain that some people will read this today and become angry with me. Guess what? That’s exactly the same response they gave to Jeremiah when he delivered it some 2500 years ago to Judah. Anger, but why? They wanted Jeremiah to only preach good news. But Jeremiah was bound by God to preach the truth and the truth was this...the Judgment of God was coming upon the nation.


Today we live in an unprecedented time in American history. Our nation has crossed the point of no return and our nation is going to experience the judgment of God. Nobody knows the when, or the how, but God is clearly revealing that He will soon bring His judgment upon the nation that He established some 244 years ago.


This nation has been blessed beyond any nation that has ever existed on the earth. But this nation has now abandoned God. Sin is now applauded and celebrated and anyone who dares stand for truth is mocked and persecuted. Many churches have fallen into the darkness of sin, abandoned the Word and refuse to turn back to God. The blood of some 60 million aborted babies cries out to God while many, yes church people, openly support the right for a woman to kill their baby inside their womb. There is no remedy for this great national sin.


No election can remedy this. No supreme court can overcome this, and no president can stand against that which God has planned. Yes, this nation has crossed the point of no return. Yes, I will still vote. I will continue to pray and preach that many inside our nation will confess their sins, fall on their face and cry out to God for forgiveness and mercy through the blood of Jesus.


The political leaders of that day threw Jeremiah into a cistern to shut him up. They only wanted good news, but there was no good news...the judgment of God was coming, but they didn’t want to hear it. Today, many preachers have forsaken the truth and followed after the world, abandoning the spring of living water and building cracked cisterns that will never save anyone.


Jeremiah 2:11-13 (NLT)

11 Has any nation ever traded its gods for new ones, even though they are not gods at all? Yet my people have exchanged their glorious God for worthless idols!

12 The heavens are shocked at such a thing and shrink back in horror and dismay,” says the LORD. 13 “For my people have done two evil things: They have abandoned me— the fountain of living water. And they have dug for themselves cracked cisterns that can hold no water at all!


Do you know what happened after God told Jeremiah to stop praying for the nation? God sent an invading army into Jerusalem and overwhelmed it. Many died from the battle. Many died from starvation and sickness during the siege. Those who survived were carried off as slaves to a foreign land. The nation was utterly destroyed! There was no one to save them. They had abandoned the One that saves! Their punishment was the judgment of God. The New Testament Book of Hebrews gives us a warning today about the judgment of God that will come to those who turn their back on the blessed Savior, the Son of God.


Hebrews 10:29-31 (NLT)

29 Just think how much worse the punishment will be for those who have trampled on the Son of God, and have treated the blood of the covenant, which made us holy, as if it were common and unholy, and have insulted and disdained the Holy Spirit who brings God’s mercy to us.

30 For we know the one who said, “I will take revenge. I will pay them back.” He also said, “The LORD will judge his own people.” 31 It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God.


Some will read today’s word and become angry and call me unpatriotic. Some will read it and mock me as simple-minded fear monger. But some will read it, seek the truth and cry out to God in repentance. I cannot determine the outcome of this letter, but I am compelled by God’s Spirit to write it.


Only Jesus can save us!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about that big rock

monday, january 4, 2021

The new year is a good time to look ahead. We look forward in anticipation of that which lies ahead of us on this new road called 2021. Have you ever considered a new year as a new road to travel? Lord willing, this new year will be a new road that will be 365 days long. Today, I would like to look at this new year from a spiritual perspective. What will we experience on this new road called 2021?


For some this new year will be restricted by a Big Rock on the road. This Big Rock will become an obstacle that causes them to spend time and effort...attempting to move that Big Rock out of their way, or at least ignore its presence...so they can continue their journey into 2021.


Others will embrace the presence of this Big Rock on this new road of 2021. They will see that Big Rock as a guidepost that enables them to travel securely and confidently on this new road of 2021. How you see this Big Rock has great and eternal spiritual implications and consequences.


Do you know about this Big Rock on the road? Would you try to move it out of your way, or would you embrace it as a signpost...guiding you into the future? The Bible reveals the identity and purpose of this Big Rock on the road. The Big Rock is there to guide us to God. In fact, this Big Rock reveals the only way to God.


This Big Rock is there to block the road of man which always leads to death, while opening a new road to God, a detour from death to life. The ancient nation of Israel tried to find the road to God by attempting to keep the Law of Moses. But that road also led them to a dead end. They attempted to find God by doing. But on their road of doing, they abandoned the road of trusting and experiencing God through faith...and the Big Rock that was placed there to save them actually caused them to stumble and fall.


But the people of Israel, who tried so hard to get right with God by keeping the law, never succeeded. 32 Why not? Because they were trying to get right with God by keeping the law instead of by trusting in him. They stumbled over the great rock in their path. (Romans 9:31-32 NLT)


God’s mercy gave the nation of Israel a warning and that warning still applies to us on our 2021 road today. Do you know about this Big Rock on the road? Did you read the warning signs?

God warned them of this in the Scriptures when he said, “I am placing a stone in Jerusalem that makes people stumble, a rock that makes them fall. But anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced.” (Romans 9:33 NLT)


Today, some see this Big Rock on the road as an impediment to their future life. They will try to ignore the Big Rock or move the Big Rock out of their way so they might continue to find their future life on this road of 2021. To others, this Big Rock is their future life and they gladly put their faith and trust totally in Him.


The Big Rock has a name, Jesus! Today, He stands immovable in front of us on the road called 2021. He is the only way, the only road that leads to God and eternal life. Do you see and know the Big Rock on the road?


And, “He is the stone that makes people stumble, the rock that makes them fall.” They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them. (1 Peter 2:8 NLT)


Some are standing on, and some are stumbling over this Big Rock on the road. They stumble because they refuse to believe and accept God’s Word about the Big Rock. The Bible clearly describes a time when the Big Rock is going to come again and stand upon the whole earth as King, bringing an eternal kingdom to this earth. The prophet Daniel reveals the future return of the Big Rock some 500 years before Jesus’ first coming.


As you watched, a rock was cut from a mountain, but not by human hands. It struck the feet of iron and clay, smashing them to bits. 35 The whole statue was crushed into small pieces of iron, clay, bronze, silver, and gold. Then the wind blew them away without a trace, like chaff on a threshing floor. But the rock that knocked the statue down became a great mountain that covered the whole earth...“During the reigns of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed or conquered. It will crush all these kingdoms into nothingness, and it will stand forever. 45 That is the meaning of the rock cut from the mountain, though not by human hands, that crushed to pieces the statue of iron, bronze, clay, silver, and gold. The great God was showing the king what will happen in the future. The dream is true, and its meaning is certain.” Daniel 2: 34-35, 44-45 (NLT)


The meaning of the Rock is certain. God’s great mercy has placed a Great Big Immovable Eternal Rock in Jerusalem...and everything else is sinking sand.


Then Jesus asked them, “Didn’t you ever read this in the Scriptures? ‘The stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone. This is the LORD’s doing, and it is wonderful to see.’ 43 I tell you, the Kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation that will produce the proper fruit. 44 Anyone who stumbles over that stone will be broken to pieces, and it will crush anyone it falls on.” (Matthew 21:42-44 NLT)


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about new

monday, December 28, 2020

This Thursday night at midnight will be the beginning of a new year, 2021. Most people will be happy to say goodbye to 2020 and all this pandemic stuff. Today, on this final week of 2020, I’d like to focus on the word “new”. Have you ever considered the meaning and power of that word?


The Webster’s dictionary defines “new” as: “having recently come into existence”. Most of us like new things, new houses, new cars, new possessions, even new relationships. New almost always seems better than old, but there is a very large problem with new in this present world. New always becomes old. It was about this time last year that we were looking forward to a new year called 2020 and now it’s old and passing away.


That’s the problem with new...it doesn’t stay new very long. That new car get’s old pretty fast and eventually stops taking us places. That new house eventually becomes an old house and things start falling apart. I’ve noticed that everything on this present earth seems to be wearing down and wearing out, including me. Everything that was once called new has or is in the process of becoming old. And old wouldn’t necessarily be a problem if it were not for decay and death. New becomes old and old always leads to decay and death on this present earth.


I realize this part may not be very encouraging but hold on for a moment. What if there was something new coming soon? Something new that would never grow old. Something new that would never experience death or decay. That would be the best news of all as we enter this new year 2021.


The same God that created everything new in the beginning gave us a hint in the Old Testament Book of Isaiah...a hint of this future time when everything would be made new again.


“But forget all that— it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. 19 For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland. Isaiah 43:18-19 (NLT)


Can you see it? Can you see the promise of God that one day everything is going to be made new again? But what about death and decay? Won’t it all become old and die, just like the first time? This next Scripture from the New Testament Book of Romans answers the question about death and decay.


For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are. 20 Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope,

21 the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay. Romans 8:19-21 (NLT)


Everything in God’s creation is looking forward to this new thing that God has announced and revealed to those who will have ears to hear. God has made a way for the curse (sin, death & decay) to be lifted. There is a future day coming when God is going to reveal who His children really are. Those who have put their faith and trust in Jesus as the Son of God and Savior of the world have become the true children of God. They will be the recipients of this new thing that God has planned for those who believe and receive His blessed promises. They will be set free from sin, death and decay...forever free.


The curse of sin, death and decay will be lifted, and everything will be made new. This time...it will remain new forever. How incredible is this revelation from God? How wonderful is this good news from God? Can you imagine living in a world where nothing gets old, nothing decays, and nothing and no one dies? This is the world that God has offered to us through Jesus Christ our Lord.


And the one sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” And then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.”

6 And he also said, “It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life.

7 All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children. Revelation 21:5-7 (NLT)


I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy NEW year. I can’t help but wonder if 2021 will be the year that all creation has been waiting for. May this new year 2021 find all of us expectant and faithful to the promises of God through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about peace on earth

monday, december 21, 2020

This week people from every tribe and tongue and nation on earth will read the Christmas Story fulfilling this prophetic Word of God given through the angel Gabriel to Mary. “He will be very great and called the Son of the Most High” (Luke 1:32 NLT). Inside that glorious Christmas Story is another heavenly message. This one came at night, delivered by a multitude of heavenly hosts, to a bunch of frightened shepherds. This message was to all the inhabitants of planet earth...that is why the Christmas Story is still being read on planet earth today. "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests." (Luke 2:14 NIV)


On earth...there is now the possibility of peace. That was the message from God that night outside Bethlehem. There was a baby born that day, born of God to bring peace to planet earth.


Today, we must ask the question...did this baby named Jesus fail us? Where is this peace on earth today? If we look around us there is very little peace on earth. Has this mission of mercy from the Highest Heavens failed us?


Let’s fast forward some 30 years past the birth of Christ and search for this peace on earth. These are the words of the One sent from heaven offering this peace to planet earth.


“Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword. 35 ‘I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. 36 Your enemies will be right in your own household!’ 37 “If you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worthy of being mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than me, you are not worthy of being mine. 38 If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine.

39 If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it.(Matthew  10:34-39 NLT)


Does this statement of Jesus contradict the angelic announcement about peace on earth that came at His birth? No, there is no contradiction here. There is complete clarity here. Jesus became the dividing line of all humanity. Peace would come to those who would believe and call upon the name of the Lord Jesus. But Jesus also told us that this peace with God would bring many trials and sorrows for those living on this present earth. “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33 NLT)


Yes, there can be peace on earth to anyone and everyone who will receive this One who was born from Heaven’s Throne. Yes, there is peace on earth to all who receive this Jewish Messiah as Savior and Lord/Master. It’s called faith and peace has come to all who will put their faith and trust in the promises of God that are ours through Jesus Christ. Yes, many families will be and have been divided by this Truth from heaven (not peace, but a sword).


Yes, there can be peace on this present earth that is currently filled with death, sorrow and division. Peace, because we now have peace with God through Christ our Lord. Peace, because the blood of Christ has redeemed us from our life of sin and death. Peace, because we know about the resurrection of the dead into eternal life. Peace, because we know about the future kingdom of Christ that is coming soon to planet Earth.


For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ, 20 and through him God reconciled everything to himself. He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of Christ’s blood on the cross. (Colossians 1:19-20 NLT)


The Bible reveals the battle that still rages in the heavenly realms and on this earth today. There is a false king named Satan and he brings no peace to this planet earth. His presence and his kingdom is the absence of peace. That’s why Jesus was born to us that night in Bethlehem. A newborn King was born that night to overcome this kingdom of darkness that had taken control of planet earth. The battle to regain peace on earth would end in victory...with the death of the Messiah. This was God’s plan from the beginning. This would be the defeat of the false king and the chance to bring peace to the people of planet earth. Jesus reveals this plan in advance... “The time for judging this world has come, when Satan, the ruler of this world, will be cast out. 32 And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.” 33 He said this to indicate how he was going to die. (John 12:31-33 NLT)


It was His death that brought peace on earth. It was His death on the cross that crushed the serpent’s head. Today, Satan’s days are short, and he knows it. One day, hopefully soon, Jesus will come again, and Peace on Earth will finally be realized as this false king (Satan) is thrown into prison and Jesus begins to reign on Jerusalem’s throne fulfilling God’s prophetic announcement through the angel Gabriel to Mary. “The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. 33 And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!” (Luke 1:32-33 NLT)


Today, I pray for there to be peace on earth. And no, the baby born in Bethlehem some 2000 years ago has not failed us. He has given us victory over sin and death and eternal peace with God. That’s why we continue to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with all the people of earth. For it is only through Christ that anyone will know about this true and lasting peace. He is our peace on this present earth, and He is our Prince of Peace...escorting us into the eternal kingdom that will soon come to this earth.


And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful. (Colossians 3:15 NLT)


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A Word from terry

about terrifying angels

monday, december 14, 2020

How would you respond to the sudden appearance of an angel from heaven? I suppose the answer to that question would be based upon your perception of angels. Do you think angels are pleasant or terrifying, friendly or dangerous? Could they be both, depending you’re your circumstance?


There are many examples of angels appearing to people in the Bible. They sometimes carried a message or an encouragement from God.


2 Kings 1:15 (NLT) Then the angel of the LORD said to Elijah, “Go down with him, and don’t be afraid of him.” So Elijah got up and went with him to the king.


God would also send His angels to the earth to physically deliver people from danger and trouble.


Daniel 6:22 (NLT) My God sent his angel to shut the lions’ mouths so that they would not hurt me, for I have been found innocent in his sight. And I have not wronged you, Your Majesty.”


There are several examples in the Scripture where God uses angels to protect his people from their enemies.


Psalm 34:7 (NLT) For the angel of the LORD is a guard; he surrounds and defends all who fear him.


Angels bring a Word from God, an encouragement from God and protection from God. But what about Terrifying Angels? What would bring a terrifying angel to the kingdoms of men. The Book of Hebrews says that angels are “ministering spirits/servants”...those appointed by God to care for those who will inherit salvation.


Hebrews 1:14 (NLT) Therefore, angels are only servants—spirits sent to care for people who will inherit salvation.


But what about those who will not inherit salvation? What about those who reject this salvation of God? Does God have enemies and how will angels deal with the enemies of God. God sent the death angel to Egypt in the time of Moses, but the death angel knew the difference between those who belonged to God and those who were enemies of God.


Exodus 12:23 (NLT) For the LORD will pass through the land to strike down the Egyptians. But when he sees the blood on the top and sides of the doorframe, the LORD will pass over your home. He will not permit his death angel to enter your house and strike you down.


How did the death angel know the difference? The blood of the lamb was the difference between life and death. The blood of the lamb would mark those who belonged to God and those who were His enemies.


That brings me to my real point about angels today. We fast forward some 1500 years after the time of Moses and the death angel in Egypt and we find shepherds in a field outside Bethlehem, and yes, angels are coming. But this time they’re not coming to destroy or take away life. This time they are coming to announce a way into eternal life. They are coming to deliver a message of good news from God. Even so, the shepherds will be terrified at their appearing.


Luke 2:8-10 (NLT) That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. 9 Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, 10 but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people.


What is this “good news” that would overcome the shepherd’s terror? What message would be sufficient to bring great joy into the presence of terrifying angels? The angelic message of God is short and simple.


Luke 2:11 (NLT) The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!


He’s here! The Messiah has arrived in Bethlehem today! He’s finally here! Your Savior is here. He’s really here to save you! The terrifying angels delivered a message, and it was good news for all mankind.


The angels delivered the announcement to mankind that should bring joy to all people. But wait, what if people refuse to believe this message of God delivered through the angels? What if people reject this Savior, this Messiah of God? What if they reject Jesus-Messiah? What would happen then?


Can you recall the terrifying angel scene in Egypt during the time of Moses? Can you think about the Passover in a “Terrifying Angel” context? God knew the difference between those who belonged to Him and those who were His enemies. The Blood of the Lamb would be the difference in Egypt and God knows the difference today. The blood of the Lamb is the difference.


The Book of Revelations reveals the future of all mankind and that book has many terrifying angels. Do you know why they are terrifying? They will come to the earth one day to deal with those who have refused to believe that God has sent a Savior, the Messiah, the Lord-Jesus. Rejecting this Messiah of God is to reject the blood of the Lamb...becoming the enemy of God.


The Bible talks about a future day when a trumpet will be sounded. For those who have received (through faith) Jesus as Savior and Messiah, that trumpet will announce the resurrection into eternal life. The dead in Christ will be raised with eternal flesh. Those still alive at the trumpet will also receive eternal flesh as they rise to meet the Lord in the air. Jesus told us that angels escorted Lazarus’ soul into the Paradise, waiting for the trumpet, the resurrection of the last day.


But there is another trumpet, a terrifying trumpet...this one will be surrounded by terrifying angels and a time of unparalleled trouble upon the earth. This trumpet will call the angels to bring God’s judgment upon the earth, justice to those who have refused the blood of the Lamb, the Son of God, the Messiah of God.


Revelation 8:5-6 (NLT) Then the angel filled the incense burner with fire from the altar and threw it down upon the earth; and thunder crashed, lightning flashed, and there was a terrible earthquake.

6 Then the seven angels with the seven trumpets prepared to blow their mighty blasts.


I have two final comments today. First, for believers...Do not be afraid because a Savior, the Messiah has been born to you. There are no terrifying angels in your future.


Secondly, to the unbeliever today...Repent and turn to God while there is still time. By faith, receive the blood of the Lamb and find peace with God. Turn to God before the terrifying angels come.


Revelation 14:19 (NLT) So the angel swung his sickle over the earth and loaded the grapes into the great winepress of God’s wrath.


This good news of Christmas, delivered to shepherds by angels outside Bethlehem, is only good news if you believe it.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the shepherds

monday, december 7, 2020

Have you ever wondered why God chose shepherds to be the first to hear the angelic announcement that the promised Jewish Messiah had been born? Why shepherds? Why not the religious Pharisees or Sadducees in nearby Jerusalem? Why not the king or the royal family of Caesar whose army ruled Jerusalem at that time? Why shepherds?


I don’t pretend to know the real answer to that question, but I can use the Scripture to make a reasonable assumption in search for this answer. God’s ways and God’s thoughts are not like ours. God doesn’t see things on earth as we do. God revealed this spiritual truth about Himself to the Prophet Isaiah.


"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD.

9 "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9 (NIV)


God sent His earth changing announcement to perhaps the lowest social class of people on earth, shepherds. This proves that God doesn’t see things as we do. The Christ Child’s birth was announced to simple people who led a simple life. These shepherds didn’t have many distractions or burdens that would keep them from listening as the angelic light broke through the darkness that night. These lonely shepherds didn’t have to check their calendars to see if there was time to go to Bethlehem and see if this heavenly good news was true. They just left everything and walked to Bethlehem...no they hurried/rushed to Bethlehem.


When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. Luke 2:15-16 (NLT)


Why shepherds? They seem to be attentive listeners. They seem to be readily available to go and to respond to this good news from heaven’s throne. But there’s one more thing. One more piece of information that is often overlooked in our Christmas story. It’s four verses that are often left out of the modern-day pageantry of Christmas. Four convicting verses that perhaps reveal the true reason and the answer to our question...why shepherds? Four powerful and convicting verses.


After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child. 18 All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished,

19 but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often.

20 The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them. Luke 2:17-20 (NLT)


The shepherds were called by God’s marvelous grace to experience the Messiah of God, the Savior of the world. They weren’t too busy and there was nothing on their lowly calendar that could compete with this glorious event. They went, they hurried, and they saw. It was true! It was all true! This revealed truth of God changed their lives. They were compelled to share this good news with those who had not seen angels in the sky. They were compelled to share this glorious event with those who had not seen the Christ Child in a manger. The shepherds glorified God by sharing that which had been shared with them.


Yes, the sheep in that field would eventually require their return, but not until they had told everyone around them about the angels, the Message and the Messiah. These good shepherds had met the Good Shepherd and they would never be the same. The message from the angels that night was clear, and God could have chosen anyone to be the first to receive this glorious, good news.


But the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. 11 The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! 12 And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.” Luke 2:10-13 (NLT)


God chose shepherds to be the first to hear the Message and the first to see the Good Shepherd. This reveals the heart of God and this also reveals something about the those who have been called to follow the Good Shepherd Jesus today. They were open to receive and believe the good news (gospel) message from heaven. Not only to receive it, but to share it with the world as they praised God for the privilege and the calling.


“I am the good shepherd; I know my own sheep, and they know me, John 10:14 (NLT)


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about leftovers

monday, november 30, 2020

“Leftovers” is a common word around Thanksgiving in America. Yes, even during a pandemic when we’re not supposed to have anyone over to share a meal. This word (leftovers) is used to describe that which cannot be consumed at the time of the meal, the gathering. These leftovers are not thrown away, they are carefully put away so they can be consumed later. Leftovers means there was more than enough.


Have you ever thought about Jesus in the context of leftovers? Have you ever thought about Jesus being and providing more than be consumed at the time of the gathering...more than enough? The Gospel of Mark reveals such an event with many leftovers. Actually, there were two such events with many leftovers.


Jesus supernaturally multiplied the available supply of food and fed 5,000 and they picked up 12 baskets of leftovers (Mark 6:44). Later, Jesus supernaturally multiplied the available supply of food and fed 4,000 and they picked up 7 baskets of leftovers. These two miracles were not a miscalculation by Jesus. No, the leftovers were a revelation for those who would see and hear the truth that was being revealed.


It was after these two supernatural feeding events that Jesus and His disciples got into the boat to travel to the other side of the lake. In that moment, after they had all seen how Jesus was able to supply not just enough, but more than enough that this next scene happened.


Jesus’ disciples had boarded that boat with only one loaf of bread. One loaf would not be enough for this group of men and they began to argue among themselves in the presence of Jesus. In that moment Jesus turns their attention to “yeast”, the ingredient that is used to make bread rise. Yeast is also a spiritual reference to sin.


Mark 8:14-16 (NLT)

But the disciples had forgotten to bring any food. They had only one loaf of bread with them in the boat. 15 As they were crossing the lake, Jesus warned them, “Watch out! Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and of Herod.” 16 At this they began to argue with each other because they hadn’t brought any bread.


What is this yeast of the Pharisees and Herod? Do you know? They wanted a sign that would prove that Jesus was who He claimed to be. The signs were everywhere, but the religious and political leaders couldn’t see them. Jesus then warns His followers... “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and of Herod”.


Do you know about this dangerous yeast? Why did Jesus use this “yeast warning” while the disciples were arguing about only having one loaf of bread? Do you see it? Do you need a sign? Jesus uses this scene to reveal something that should strengthen all of us today.


Mark 8:17-21 (NLT)

Jesus knew what they were saying, so he said, “Why are you arguing about having no bread? Don’t you know or understand even yet? Are your hearts too hard to take it in?

18 ‘You have eyes—can’t you see? You have ears—can’t you hear?’ Don’t you remember anything at all?

19 When I fed the 5,000 with five loaves of bread, how many baskets of leftovers did you pick up afterward?” “Twelve,” they said.

20 “And when I fed the 4,000 with seven loaves, how many large baskets of leftovers did you pick up?” “Seven,” they said.

21 “Don’t you understand yet?” he asked them.


Can you see it today? Can you understand this event today? Do you need a sign? Jesus is revealing something to anyone and everyone who will see and understand. You don’t need another sign (the yeast of the Pharisees and Herod). The signs have already been given by Jesus and the testimonies have already been recorded. You are reading Mark’s testimony today. And what do they reveal?


Jesus is not just enough. No, Jesus is more than enough! Jesus is more than any of us could ever imagine and we don’t need Him to show us anything new to prove Himself to us today. The cross and the resurrection are all we need.


These guys are sitting in a boat with a man of unlimited supply and they are arguing because they only have one loaf of bread. These same guys saw Jesus feed the multitudes with a boy’s sack lunch... twice. How soon we forget about the leftovers. How soon we forget about the unlimited supply of our Lord.


Today, many are fearful because of this pandemic, the political chaos, and the potential for a coming economic collapse. Does Jesus need to give you a sign? Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and of Herod! Jesus is more than enough. He even makes leftovers!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

two becoming one

monday, November 23, 2020

Today is my 64th birthday. Sixty-four years ago, today, I exited my mother’s womb and breathed outside air for the very first time. That was my birth...day, but that was not the origin of me. The beginning of me occurred some 9 months before when two became one. The seed of my father and the egg of my mother became one...two became one. That one was me and my life began. God had orchestrated the whole thing, and this is the physical reality of mankind. When two become one...they produce another one and life begins. God announced this physical order in the Garden of Eden when there were only two.


Genesis 2:24 (NLT) This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.


This is the physical reality of all mankind. This is how life begins on planet earth. This is the reason there are some 7.8 billion people on the earth today. Parents (two) have children (one) and the children become one with the parents...it’s called family. This is how God has been adding life to planet earth for some 6000 years now. Two become one and life begins.


That’s the physical reality of how two (parents) become one and then the one (the child) joins the family of the two...becoming three. That’s the physical reality and that physical reality has a physical problem called death. All three (parents and child) come with an expiration date.


But that’s not the end of this two becoming one story. There is a higher and greater spiritual reality to two becoming one. The physical body of all mankind is subject to death, an expiration date. But what about the soul? Does the soul die? Does the soul expire when the physical body expires? Maybe the larger question is this...can the soul become one with another? Can the soul of man become one with the Spirit of God and what would that produce?


This is the greatest good news that has even come to the people of planet earth. The Creator has made a way for the souls of mankind to become one with God. Two can become one and this union doesn’t come with an expiration date. This union produces life, eternal life.


Sin broke the oneness and the union with God, but God has now made a way for the two to become one again. Mankind can become one with God and God is life without an expiration date. But how is this possible? His name is Jesus! Jesus came to make a way for mankind to become one with God...two become one and eternal life begins.


John 17:22-24 (NLT) “I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one. 23 I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.

24 Father, I want these whom you have given me to be with me where I am. Then they can see all the glory you gave me because you loved me even before the world began!


In the beginning...two became one and life began...it was called family. Sin brought death to the family and sin still brings death to the human family today. But what about the human soul? God’s mercy has made a way for us to become one with His Son by placing our faith in Him (two become one). This oneness with Christ the Son produces eternal life because it connects us to God the Father, the origin and Creator of life.


It's called faith. Faith in the One called Jesus. He came so that two could become one and this union would produce a family, God’s family. The children of God have become one with God through Jesus Christ the Son. All of this is recorded in a Book called the Bible. Some believe the Bible, and some don’t. That too is called faith.


John 20:30-31 (NLT) The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. 31 But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.


64 years and 9 months ago...two became one and my life began. By the power and mercy of God I became a living soul. There was a time in my life (years later) that I became aware of my own mortality and the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ was revealed to me through the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. By faith, on that day, I was born again, but this new birth was spiritual, not physical. This birth was the rebirth of my soul when Jesus and I became one. The two became one...and my forever life began.


Romans 8:10-11 (NLT) And Christ lives within you, so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives you life because you have been made right with God.

11 The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you.


Maranatha, Hosanna. Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about sodom and egypt

monday, november 16, 2020

God reveals many incredible future scenes in the Book of Revelation. Two of those future scenes appear in chapter 11. They are both particularly curious and interesting to me. The first one reveals “Two Witnesses” that will supernaturally appear and preach in Jerusalem during the Great Tribulation. There has been much debate regarding the identity of these “Two Witnesses”, but that’s not my real topic for today’s letter. The second curious and interesting scene in chapter 11 is when God compares (figuratively) Jerusalem to “Sodom and Egypt” during this time of the Two Witnesses and The Tribulation.


And their bodies [the two witnesses] will lie in the main street of Jerusalem, the city that is figuratively called “Sodom” and “Egypt,” the city where their Lord was crucified. (Revelation 11:8 NLT)


Jerusalem, Sodom and Egypt...what could these cities/cultures reveal to us today? What could this Revelation of God reveal to us today? Why does God connect last day’s Jerusalem to Sodom and Egypt?


Let’s begin with Sodom. Sodom is the epitome of sexual sin and idolatry. This figurative comparison of Sodom comes as God is pouring out his tribulation wrath and judgment upon the earth, yes even Jerusalem. God destroyed the wicked city of Sodom during the time of Abraham, but the sexual sin of Sodom (homosexuality) continues upon the earth.


Later, God condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah and turned them into heaps of ashes. He made them an example of what will happen to ungodly people. (2 Peter 2:6 NLT)


But what about Egypt? Why would God compare Jerusalem to Egypt during the Great Tribulation? Egypt represents those who hate and persecute God’s chosen people. Egypt was the world’s superpower during the time of Moses, but God destroyed the nation of Egypt for their harsh treatment of Israel...as He delivered Israel from their Egyptian bondage. 


So as the sun began to rise, Moses raised his hand over the sea, and the water rushed back into its usual place. The Egyptians tried to escape, but the LORD swept them into the sea.

28 Then the waters returned and covered all the chariots and charioteers—the entire army of Pharaoh. Of all the Egyptians who had chased the Israelites into the sea, not a single one survived. (Exodus 14:27-28 NLT)


Sodom represents the lust of the flesh (our human sin nature) that is revealed through sexual sin and idolatry. God’s wrath removed the wicked city of Sodom, but the lust of the flesh continues. Egypt represents the world’s hatred of God’s called-out people that has always led to their persecution. God destroyed the power of Egypt, but the hatred and persecution of God’s called-out people (the church) continues. 


But there is something else that connects Egypt and Sodom to the called-out people of God. There is something else that specifically connects Sodom and Egypt to Jerusalem and God’s coming judgment.


Do you know what it is? The desire to look back! Lot’s wife looked back to Sodom and she was destroyed along with the wicked people there. The children of Israel that God had delivered out of bondage looked back to Egypt and God destroyed that entire generation of men for refusing to follow Him into the Promised Land.


Let’s face it...our flesh is drawn to lustful pleasure, to sexual sin and idolatry. Let’s admit it today, our flesh sometimes wants to look back to Egypt, even though Egypt is a picture of spiritual bondage and suffering. Our flesh is not naturally drawn to God’s holy Jerusalem. Our flesh, our sin nature is drawn to Sodom and Egypt. That’s why we need a Deliverer! That’s why we need someone to set us free from sexual sin, idolatry and the bondage of sin and death that come from the flesh. The power of the Holy Spirit of Christ is the only power sufficient to overcome the destructive power of our sin nature and set us free from the life of sin and death.


And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. (Romans 7:18 NLT)


That’s why we need a Deliverer. We need a Moses...someone who can set us free from Sodom and Egypt. We need someone who can deliver us to God’s Holy Jerusalem...the very place of His divine presence. This Deliverer is Jesus, and we must follow Him into the Promised Land of God’s presence. Moses warned the people of his day about looking back to Egypt and that same warning is for us today. 


Moses continued, “The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him. (Deuteronomy 18:15 NLT)


Moses revealed the coming Messiah-Jesus...You must listen to Him! When He calls you...you must listen to Him. Don’t look back to Sodom and don’t turn your face toward Egypt. Sodom and Egypt are both pictures of God’s wrath and judgment that is coming. Set your face toward the New Jerusalem, the very presence of God and the Promised Land for God’s chosen and called-out people. 


Yes, the sexual sin and idolatry of Sodom is advancing today. Yes, there will be hatred and persecution for all the chosen of God who stand for the truth of God in these last days, but we must never look back. Never look back to Sodom or Egypt!


Think back on those early days when you first learned about Christ. Remember how you remained faithful even though it meant terrible suffering.

33 Sometimes you were exposed to public ridicule and were beaten, and sometimes you helped others who were suffering the same things.

34 You suffered along with those who were thrown into jail, and when all you owned was taken from you, you accepted it with joy. You knew there were better things waiting for you that will last forever.

35 So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you!

36 Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.

37 “For in just a little while, the Coming One will come and not delay.

38 And my righteous ones will live by faith. But I will take no pleasure in anyone who turns away.”

39 But we are not like those who turn away from God to their own destruction. We are the faithful ones, whose souls will be saved. (Hebrews 10:32-39 NLT)


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A Word from Terry about being Blinded by the Darkness


Monday, November 9, 2020


Physically blind people describe what they can see or perceive as darkness, absolute darkness. They cannot see or perceive any light. Is that also true for spiritual blindness? Is it possible that spiritual blindness is caused by the inability to see and perceive the light?


First, we must identify the light...that which spiritually blind people cannot see. What is light?


John 1:4-9 (NLT)
4 The Word gave life to everything that was created, and his life brought light to everyone.
5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.
6 God sent a man, John the Baptist,
7 to tell about the light so that everyone might believe because of his testimony.
8 John himself was not the light; he was simply a witness to tell about the light.
9 The one who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.

The Bible teaches us that there is a light that cannot be influenced by darkness. In fact, this light actually eliminates and overcomes the darkness. The Light has a name...Jesus...the Light of the World. The Light came into the world wrapped in human flesh some 2000 years ago. This Light is also connected to another name...The Word...the Living Word of God.  The Light and the Word cannot be influenced by the darkness.

The Light and the Word have the power to overcome and displace the darkness. But what would happen if someone rejected this Light and denied the Word that came into the world some 2000 years ago? Why would anyone reject the Light of the world and why would anyone reject the Word of God?

The Bible reveals a power of darkness that attempts to suppress the Light and deny the Word so that the people of earth would remain in spiritual blindness/darkness. The power of Satan is the power of darkness that leads to spiritual blindness. Satan represents the absence of God, the very absence of Light and Truth...those blinded by the darkness.


2 Corinthians 4:3-4 (NLT)
3 If the Good News [the Word] we preach is hidden behind a veil, it is hidden only from people who are perishing. 4 Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God.

This Light is the good news that opens the eyes of the blind by exposing them to the Light and the Word. This Word is the message of God that reveals Satan for who he really is...a thief and a liar. Satan wants to steal your Light by denying the Word which would leave you in the blinding darkness.

Do you know the ultimate message of Satan? Hate! Satan hates God and everything that is good and belongs to God. Satan hates the Light and Satan hates the Word. Satan is the adversary of God, the absence of Light and Truth (the Word). God is love and the gospel message of Christ is based on the love of God. The Light and the Word bring love into the world and the absence of the Word and the Light will leave the world in the blinding darkness of hate.


1 John 2:9-11 (NLT)
9 If anyone claims, “I am living in the light,” but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is still living in darkness.
10 Anyone who loves another brother or sister is living in the light and does not cause others to stumble.
11 But anyone who hates another brother or sister is still living and walking in darkness. Such a person does not know the way to go, having been blinded by the darkness.

Blinded by the darkness...the result is hate instead of love. The Light and the Word have a name and that name is Love. To reject this name and this love is to choose to live in the blinding darkness of Satan. Left unchanged, by the powerful Word and Light...this spiritual darkness will lead to an eternal darkness, a world without any Light and a world without the Word...because they had both been rejected.


Matthew 25:29-30 (NLT)
29 To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.
30 Now throw this useless servant into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.


Thank God today for the Light...thank God today for the Word. They have taken away our spiritual darkness and brought us into the glorious Light of Jesus Christ our Lord.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

saving the bride

monday, november 2, 2020

Revelation 21:9 describes this scene... “Then one of the seven angels who held the seven bowls containing the seven last plagues came and said to me, “Come with me! I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.”


The seven bowls and the seven last plagues represent the wrath and judgment of God that is coming upon the lost world, those who have rejected Jesus as Savior and King. But, in this scene, that horrible event has passed and now, the angel reveals “the bride, the wife of the Lamb”. The Spirit then takes the Apostle John to a high mountain and reveals the beautiful “New Jerusalem”.


The seven-last bowls of God’s wrath and judgment have been emptied out. The seven-last plagues of the great tribulation have completed their purpose upon the earth and then the angel reveals the bride, the wife of the Lamb and the New Jerusalem, descending down like a bride prepared for the Bridegroom.


The battle is finally over. The wrath of God was poured our full strength on the earth. Judgment day has come and in that blessed final scene the angel tells the Apostle John, “Come with me! I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb”.


Everything from that verse forward is glorious and wonderful. The angel describes and reveals the New Jerusalem where the Father and the Son will dwell among those whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.


The New Jerusalem reveals a new world order, under the absolute authority of God...where everything will be made new. “ Its gates will never be closed at the end of day because there is no night there. 26 And all the nations will bring their glory and honor into the city. 27 Nothing evil will be allowed to enter, nor anyone who practices shameful idolatry and dishonesty—but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.” (Revelation 21:25-27 NLT).


Can you see it...the wife, the bride of the Lamb is in the New Jerusalem...like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband-Jesus. This is our hope today! God has revealed the future of the bride, the wife of the Lamb. No matter what happens...the bride, the wife of the Lamb will find her place in the New Jerusalem when everything is made new.


Many are feeling anxious and insecure with this current pandemic and political unrest in our country. But know this today...He will save His bride, the church! Yes, there may be hardships, suffering and even death for some believers, but in the end, He will save His bride.


For God chose to save us through our Lord Jesus Christ, not to pour out his anger on us.

10 Christ died for us so that, whether we are dead or alive when he returns, we can live with him forever. 11 So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing. (1 Thessalonians 5:9-11 NLT)


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the new life

monday, October 26, 2020

Most Christians understand the idea that a “new life” awaits us in heaven, but what about today? What about this present life? Does God promise us a new life in this present world and what would that look like. What would it not look like? I’d like to address those questions today by looking at the Apostle Paul’s New Testament letter called “Colossians”.


Colossians 3:1-4 (NLT)

1 Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand.

2 Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth.

3 For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.

4 And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.


The new life of a believer no longer focuses totally on the things of this earth, but we fix our sights on the reality of our coming King and His coming Kingdom. Yes, we have to live on and in this present world that is filled with much trouble and sorrow, but that is not our primary focus. No, the primary focus of a new life believer is that which is to come. Christ has become our new life and that requires us to look forward to the coming glory.


This new life includes a new nature. The presence of the Holy Spirit will transform our sinful nature and give us a new life. There will be things in this new life that we can no longer participate in because our new life belongs to Christ. Those who have not experienced this new life will think us strange because their nature has not been transformed by the power of Christ.


Colossians 3:5 (NLT)

5 So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires. Don’t be greedy, for a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world.


This new life in Christ is salvation and life itself. We receive this new life by receiving the Holy Sprit of Christ into our hearts. Jesus actually enters into us...bringing new life by His divine presence. The only way to survive the coming judgment of God is by putting our faith and trust in Jesus Christ, our Lord. Let there be no doubt...the anger and judgment of God is coming upon this present world and all who have rejected this new life in Christ.


Colossians 3:6-10 (NLT)

6 Because of these sins, the anger of God is coming.

7 You used to do these things when your life was still part of this world.

8 But now is the time to get rid of anger, rage, malicious behavior, slander, and dirty language.

9 Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds. 10 Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him.


Yes, there will be new and amazing fruit produced by this new life in Christ, a fruitfulness and faithfulness that you could have never imagined before you found this new life. This new life is producing a new nature and this new nature is shaping you into the likeness of God...becoming like Him, taking on the likeness of His Son, as He receives us into His family.


Colossians 3:11 (NLT)

11 In this new life, it doesn’t matter if you are a Jew or a Gentile, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbaric, uncivilized, slave, or free. Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us.


All that matters in this new life is JESUS. Because without Jesus, there is no new life in this present world and without Jesus there is no eternal life in the next one.


Find joy today in this new life that belongs to us through Jesus Christ our Lord. Yes, we may face difficult times in this present world, but know this...we have already received our new life. We’re just waiting for the new world to live it in.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about foolishness

monday, october 19, 2020

Have you ever wondered why there is so much open animosity toward the Church and Christians these days? If you stop and think about it many of America’s hospitals and great universities were started by Christians. Today, the Church around our country feeds and shelters many of those forgotten and left behind by our society. There is so much good that comes from the Church in America. So, why the anger toward the Church, toward Christians?


It's the message, not the works! Behind the building of hospitals and universities was a message. Behind the plan to feed and shelter the homeless is a message. Let there be no doubt, all the works of the Church are based upon and motivated by the message.


Let me begin by summarizing the powerful message of Christ that promotes the works of the Church.


Matthew 28:18-20 (NIV)

18 Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.

19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."


Go and make disciples. Baptize and teach them about the message of Christ and I (Jesus) will join you in this mission. When the Church went to make disciples through the message of Jesus Christ, they found sick people. So, they built hospitals. They found people without knowledge, so they built schools. They found the homeless, the hungry and the forgotten, and they reached out in love to meet their most basic physical needs. All of this was based upon the message. The works always came from the message.


Who could be against a group of people who build hospitals, universities, feed and shelter the homeless? Who could possibly stand against these wonderful works of humanity? It’s not the works, it’s the message.


The Apostle Paul declared this many years ago and I think it would be important for the Church to come to grips with this truth once more.


1 Corinthians 1:18 (NIV)

18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.


The world would desire the works of the Church without the message of the Church and many Churches today have fallen for it. There are many Churches today attempting to carry out their mission by suppressing the message so that the world might finally accept us. Is this possible?


Let me put it another way. There can be no Church without the message of Christ. If we surrender the message, we surrender the Church into the world that it was sent to save. The message is the power of the Church. The message is our treasure, and we cannot surrender our treasure in order to make friends with the world. To surrender the message is to deny the One that gave us the message in the beginning. The works of the Church without the message of the Church will leave the dying world in the darkness and we have been called and commanded to share the light. The message reveals the light.


1 John 1:5-7 (NIV)

5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.

6 If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth.

7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.


Yes, this message will seem foolish to this dark world, but it is our treasure. We cannot advance the Kingdom of Christ while leaving the message of Christ behind. We must preach the gospel message of Jesus as we meet the physical needs of this world. But we must never compromise the message.


1 Timothy 2:5-6 (NLT)

5 For there is only one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus.

6 He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone. This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time.


The message of Christ is our greatest treasure, and it would be foolishness indeed to not share it.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

praying for our nation

tuesday, october 13, 2020

A strange and significant thing happened about 13 minutes into this past Wednesday night’s Roots Class at NCC. We (the whole church) have been studying “Experiencing God” and we were in week #6 and the topic for that week was “God Speaks”.


I teach the large group session in the worship center while there are several other small group sessions meeting in the other parts of the campus. I was out walking around and talking to people before the session began when I struck up a conversation with one of our faithful members. We began talking about prayer and that conversation led into him having difficulty praying for our nation. I told him that I was also having that same problem. I was able to pray for the people of our nation to come to repentance. In fact, my wife and I attended the national call to prayer and repentance rally in Washington DC just a couple of weeks ago. But I have been unable to pray that God would restore our nation as a whole. We talked about how this same dilemma of prayer came to the Prophet Jeremiah right before God came to bring judgment on the Nation of Judah. God told Jeremiah to stop praying for the nation because it was too late. The nation had crossed the point of no return. Stop praying for them! That conversation was specifically based on the following Scripture.


Jeremiah 7:16-17 (NLT)

16 “Pray no more for these people, Jeremiah. Do not weep or pray for them, and don’t beg me to help them, for I will not listen to you. 17 Don’t you see what they are doing throughout the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem?


That was not a particularly unusual conversation to have with a brother in Christ. The Holy Spirit was showing us the same thing and we shared it openly with each other. I did not find that conversation strange at all. What happens next was strange and significant! Remember the topic for that week was “God Speaks”.


About 13 minutes into my teaching session (you can go online and view it) God spoke through the Word and circumstances. I was making a random and unplanned illustration about listening expectantly for God to speak when you open the Bible to read it. At that moment I held out my Bible and randomly opened it up and randomly read the first verse that I saw. Guess what verse it was...Jeremiah 7:16. The same verse that we had talked about before I came up to speak. It didn’t just happen once, it happened twice. I’ll admit that I was stunned at how God had so powerfully and physically communicated something to me and to the church in that moment.


So, what does this mean? Yes, we should continue to pray for national repentance because there are some who will still come to Christ. Yes, we should continue to do everything we can to draw people across our nation back to faith in Jesus Christ our Lord. But I am firmly convinced, now more than ever, that our nation, like Judah of old, has crossed the point of no return. There is now no more remedy for the nation. There is no cure for the nation as a whole.


Jeremiah 30:12-13 (NIV)

12 "This is what the LORD says: "'Your wound is incurable, your injury beyond healing.

13 There is no one to plead your cause, no remedy for your sore, no healing for you.


I am almost certain that some people will read this today and become angry with me. Guess what? That’s exactly the same response they gave to Jeremiah when he delivered it some 2500 years ago to Judah. Anger, but why? They wanted Jeremiah to only preach good news. But Jeremiah was bound by God to preach the truth and the truth was this...the Judgment of God was coming upon the nation.


Today we live in an unprecedented time in American history. Our nation has crossed the point of no return and our nation is going to experience the judgment of God. Nobody knows the when, or the how, but God is clearly revealing that He will soon bring His judgment upon the nation that He established some 244 years ago.


This nation has been blessed beyond any nation that has ever existed on the earth. But this nation has now abandoned God. Sin is now applauded and celebrated and anyone who dares stand for truth is mocked and persecuted. Many churches have fallen into the darkness of sin, abandoned the Word and refuse to turn back to God. The blood of some 60 million aborted babies cries out to God while many, yes church people, openly support the right for a woman to kill their baby inside their womb. There is no remedy for this great national sin.


No election can remedy this. No supreme court can overcome this, and no president can stand against that which God has planned. Yes, this nation has crossed the point of no return. Yes, I will still vote. I will continue to pray and preach that many inside our nation will confess their sins, fall on their face and cry out to God for forgiveness and mercy through the blood of Jesus.


The political leaders of that day threw Jeremiah into a cistern to shut him up. They only wanted good news, but there was no good news...the judgment of God was coming, but they didn’t want to hear it. Today, many preachers have forsaken the truth and followed after the world, abandoning the spring of living water and building cracked cisterns that will never save anyone.


Jeremiah 2:11-13 (NLT)

11 Has any nation ever traded its gods for new ones, even though they are not gods at all? Yet my people have exchanged their glorious God for worthless idols!

12 The heavens are shocked at such a thing and shrink back in horror and dismay,” says the LORD. 13 “For my people have done two evil things: They have abandoned me— the fountain of living water. And they have dug for themselves cracked cisterns that can hold no water at all!


Do you know what happened after God told Jeremiah to stop praying for the nation? God sent an invading army into Jerusalem and overwhelmed it. Many died from the battle. Many died from starvation and sickness during the siege. Those who survived were carried off as slaves to a foreign land. The nation was utterly destroyed! There was no one to save them. They had abandoned the One that saves! Their punishment was the judgment of God. The New Testament Book of Hebrews gives us a warning today about the judgment of God that will come to those who turn their back on the blessed Savior, the Son of God.


Hebrews 10:29-31 (NLT)

29 Just think how much worse the punishment will be for those who have trampled on the Son of God, and have treated the blood of the covenant, which made us holy, as if it were common and unholy, and have insulted and disdained the Holy Spirit who brings God’s mercy to us.

30 For we know the one who said, “I will take revenge. I will pay them back.” He also said, “The LORD will judge his own people.” 31 It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God.


Some will read today’s word and become angry and call me unpatriotic. Some will read it and mock me as simple-minded fear monger. But some will read it, seek the truth and cry out to God in repentance. I cannot determine the outcome of this letter, but I am compelled by God’s Spirit to write it.


Only Jesus can save us!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

before and after

monday, october 5, 2020

I find it interesting that our human calendars are marked by the first coming of Jesus. The world uses Jesus’ first appearance to separate human history into two categories, “Before and After”. Before Christ (BC) and After Christ (AD-anno Domini).


There has been a move for many years to change these dating methods to Common Era (CE) to refer to the time after Jesus, and Before Common Era (BCE) the refer to the time period before Jesus. These efforts to change our calendar descriptions come from those who refuse to accept the reality of Jesus’ effect on time.


Did Jesus’ first coming have any effect on time? Is Jesus the dividing line for all humanity regarding time? Did everything regarding time change when the Son of God entered our world in the flesh? Can the unbelieving world’s attempt to change the calendar dating methods erase Jesus’ effect on time?


How foolish would it be for those who have such a limited lifespan of time to attempt to erase the One that is eternal and with no limit of time? Yes, Jesus’ first appearance became the marker that separated our time of human history into two categories, before and after Jesus. Those 33 years of Jesus’ life on this earth have forever marked a time that will determine the future time for all mankind.


Jesus came to determine our time. No human can change or erase this truth. Jesus came to determine our time and yes, He is the dividing line for all humanity regarding time itself. Jesus will determine how much time each of us will be given.


John 3:16 (NIV)

16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.


One verse that has stood the test of time. One verse, one announcement from the Creator of time itself. One verse that spells out an unmeasurable amount of time called “eternal life”. God gave His only Son to the people of earth so that us mortals would no longer have to live in the fear of running out of time.


Did you notice the word “mortals”? Jesus came into the world of mortals. Jesus came into a world of dying people. Everyone was dying when Jesus came to the earth. Everyone one earth was running out of time before Christ (BC). Mortals are subject to death and now some mortals are trying to erase Jesus from the way we measure time itself. Can mortal man erase the immortal God? How foolish!


Today, I suggest that all of us mortals read this message (below) delivered by the eternal Holy Spirit of God through the Apostle Paul. Don’t just read these words but meditate on them and write them deep inside your heart. These words describe why we would never erase Jesus from our time. And by the way, the next time Jesus comes...there will be no more need to measure time because it will be labeled “forever”.


1 Corinthians 15:50-58 (NLT)

50 What I am saying, dear brothers and sisters, is that our physical bodies cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. These dying bodies cannot inherit what will last forever.

51 But let me reveal to you a wonderful secret. We will not all die, but we will all be transformed!

52 It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed.

53 For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies.

54 Then, when our dying bodies have been transformed into bodies that will never die, this Scripture will be fulfilled: “Death is swallowed up in victory.

55 O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?”

56 For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power.

57 But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.

58 So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the day of atonement

monday, september 28, 2020

Today, the Jews around the world will celebrate the Day of Atonement or Yom Kippur even though many of them are under a Covid-19 lockdown. Yom Kippur falls 10 days after the Jewish New Year, celebrated by the Feast of Trumpets or Rosh Hashanah. Today is the 10th day of the new Jewish year 5781 (Tishrei 10). Today is the most holy day on the Jewish calendar, the Day of Atonement. God established this annual Day of Atonement as a time where the High Priest would purify himself and enter the Most Holy presence of God to seek forgiveness for the sins of the people of Israel.


In the time of Moses, the High Priest would enter the Most Holy Place of God’s presence (behind the veil of the Tabernacle) and offer a blood sacrifice to atone for the sins of the people of Israel. The ten days between the Feast of Trumpets and the Day of Atonement are called the Days of Awe. It is the time of spiritual preparation...when the people return to God through repentance. Repentance is the physical and spiritual act of returning to God.


Isaiah 30:15 (NLT)

15 This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: “Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved. In quietness and confidence is your strength. But you would have none of it.


These past 10 days are referred to as “The Days of Awe”. Ten days to repent and make peace with God before the Day of Atonement comes. These are the Days of Awe because they would determine your position with God in relation to the Day of Atonement. Those who have confessed and repented of their sins will find peace with God on the Day of Atonement, but those who refuse to return and repent...will find His divine judgment instead of His divine forgiveness and peace through Jesus Christ, our Lord.


Jeremiah 3:21-22 (NLT)

21 Voices are heard high on the windswept mountains, the weeping and pleading of Israel’s people. For they have chosen crooked paths and have forgotten the LORD their God.

22 “My wayward children,” says the LORD, “come back to me, and I will heal your wayward hearts.” “Yes, we’re coming,” the people reply, “for you are the LORD our God.


It is very interesting, yes providential to me that 54 people from NCC joined thousands and thousands in Washington DC this past Saturday for a time of repentance and prayer. We took this journey and participated in this time of national repentance and prayer during the Days of Awe.


This past Saturday, Franklin Graham called the church to national prayer and repentance while Jonathan Cahn spoke to the nation about “The Return”. The Return is the physical and spiritual act of Repentance. Both of these events took place in our nation’s capital during the Days of Awe. A time of preparation, prayer, and repentance before the Day of Atonement.


Today, I’m asking the believers who call NCC their home church, or anyone who receives this message to take the time to watch this prophetic word from Jonathan Cahn, given to the nation this past Saturday in Washington DC. Take time today, on the Day of Atonement to watch this 39-minute video and use this time to prepare, pray and repent before God. You can click this YouTube link to watch: https://youtu.be/uDSWBSSbIYA


Acts 3:19-23 (NIV)

19 Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord,

20 and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you--even Jesus.

21 He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets.

22 For Moses said, 'The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you.

23 Anyone who does not listen to him will be completely cut off from among his people.'


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about love and hate

monday, september 21, 2020

Have you ever wondered why or how people could have possibly hated Jesus? What was it about Jesus that had people plotting His murder? His teachings were always filled with love and mercy. Who could be against love and mercy? His teachings were about reaching out to the least of these. Who could be against that type of selfless generosity?


There are several occasions, even before the cross, that the crowd tried to kill Jesus, but were unable to do so. Jesus was in his hometown of Nazareth when He opened up the Isaiah scroll and read it out loud in the presence of the people. After reading it, Jesus announced that He was the One who had come from heaven, from God, to fulfill this prophecy of Isaiah.


Luke 4:17-18 (NLT)

18 “The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, 19 and that the time of the LORD’s favor has come.”


Good news for the poor. Who could be against that? The captives will be set free and the blind will see. Who would be against that? The oppressed will be finally free. Would any of that make you want to murder someone? Do you know what the people of Nazareth did after Jesus revealed His divine mission to them that day? They tried to push Jesus over a cliff. But why? Why the hate? Where does that come from?


The Gospel of John reveals two separate times that the people tried to stone Jesus to death (John 8:59 & John 10:31). But why? In these two scenes Jesus revealed that He personally knew Abraham (who would have lived some 2000 years before Jesus) and that He was the very Son of God (God in the flesh). But why stone him? Why murder Him? Why not just ignore Him if you don’t believe Him? What would make them hate Jesus so much that they would be willing to commit murder?


The answer to this question goes all the way back to the beginning of time itself. Yes, you can find the answer in Genesis, but you can also find it in one of the New Testament letters from the Apostle John. John actually quotes the Genesis story...to reveal the answer. Why do people hate Jesus and why do they also hate Jesus’ followers?


1 John 3:11-13 (NLT)

11 This is the message you have heard from the beginning: We should love one another.

12 We must not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and killed his brother. And why did he kill him? Because Cain had been doing what was evil, and his brother had been doing what was righteous. 13 So don’t be surprised, dear brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.


There you go...that’s the answer to that very old question. God has created us and called us to love one another but there is another force at work on the earth. There is another spirit that is leading people in another direction, with another purpose and it’s not love, but hate.


Cain belonged to the evil one, Satan. Cain is a picture of all those who hear the Word of God and then reject the light of truth...choosing to walk in the darkness of hate. Cain belonged to the evil one, a different spiritual father.


Abel belonged to God. Abel is a picture of those who hear the Word of God and walk in the light of that truth. Abel belonged to God, the true spiritual Father. Abel represents all those who love and are loved by God.


These two sons of Adam represent the two roads of life. One road walks with God and toward God. The other road walks in sinful rebellion against God and away from God.


Love comes from God, not man. Satan (the other spirit) has corrupted the heart of mankind and left us unable and unwilling to love. Love comes from God, not man. We will never know love, experience love or be able to give love without God’s transforming power in our lives through Jesus Christ the Son.


That’s why the world hated Jesus. The world doesn’t know love because the world doesn’t know Jesus. The world was and is under the power of Satan and Satan is a murderer who is without and unable to experience love. The absence of love is death and to deny love is to commit murder in our own heart. This is why we must love others with the love of Christ!


1 John 3:14-15 (NLT)

14 If we love our Christian brothers and sisters, it proves that we have passed from death to life. But a person who has no love is still dead. 15 Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.


If you are in Christ today know this...you have already crossed over from death to life. The love of God dwells inside you and this love will always be stronger than hate. But John also tells us, “Don’t be surprised, dear brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.” Jesus gave us the same revelation.


John 15:18-19 (NLT)

18 “If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. 19 The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you.


What part of the Gospel message of Christ could make people hate Jesus or His followers today? Our message is love and mercy. Our message is salvation, forgiveness and freedom. Who could possibly be against any of that? If you don’t believe it, just ignore it. But why all the hate? Where does it come from? Jesus revealed the source of hatred and lies...the other father, the other spirit.


John 8:44 (NLT)

44 For you are the children of your father the devil, and you love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer from the beginning. He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies.


Cain belonged to the evil one and followed the dark road of hate and murder. Abel belonged to God, walked in the light with God. Abel walked in the way of love, but Cain hated Abel! Why?


Cain murdered Abel because Abel chose that which was right. Yes, it sounds crazy, but it’s true. Cain hated his brother Abel because Abel chose a different way than his. Jesus is the way that the world has rejected. Today, Jesus is our different way and Jesus has commanded us to love even those who persecute and hate us because we follow Him. This love will prove that Jesus is who He says He is...and it will also prove that we belong to Him.


John 13:34-35 (NLT)

34 So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. 35 Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about tingling ears

monday, september 14, 2020

The NIV translation of the Bible uses the word “tingle” 3 different times. They are all found in the Old Testament. All three applications are connected to a revelation of warning and a time of coming judgment from God. This warning of God about the coming judgment will make the ears of those who hear it “tingle”.


The first Biblical application of “tingling ears” comes in the time of the Judges, before Israel had a king. The Priest of God at that time was Eli and there was a young apprentice working under Eli, named Samuel. This was a dark time in the nation of Israel. This next verse describes the reason for this dark time.


1 Samuel 3:1 (NIV)

1 The boy Samuel ministered before the LORD under Eli. In those days the word of the LORD was rare; there were not many visions.


The Word of the Lord was rare in those days. It is in that context that God calls young Samuel with a message that will make the ears of those who hear it “tingle”.


1 Samuel 3:11 (NIV)

11 And the LORD said to Samuel: "See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make the ears of everyone who hears of it tingle.


Remember, this word “tingle” is only used 3 times in the Bible. What is so big that will make their ears tingle? God was going to come in judgment against the Priest Eli. But why? Eli failed to take a stand against evil. That was one of the primary responsibilities of a priest of God. Eli’s sons had become evil and Eli refused to take a stand against their evil. So, God stepped in to bring judgment. The Lord reveals this ear tingling message to young Samuel.


1 Samuel 3:11-14 (NIV)

11 And the LORD said to Samuel: "See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make the ears of everyone who hears of it tingle.

12 At that time I will carry out against Eli everything I spoke against his family--from beginning to end.

13 For I told him that I would judge his family forever because of the sin he knew about; his sons made themselves contemptible, and he failed to restrain them.

14 Therefore, I swore to the house of Eli, 'The guilt of Eli's house will never be atoned for by sacrifice or offering.'"


The Lord brought His righteous judgment against the house of Eli because Eli, a priest of God, refused to take a stand against evil. Yes, even in his own family. The Word of God had become rare and Eli was complicit.


The second application of tingling ears comes in the time of the kings. The King of Judah at that time was Manasseh. King Manasseh was rotten to the core.


2 Kings 21:3-6 (NIV)

3 He rebuilt the high places his father Hezekiah had destroyed; he also erected altars to Baal and made an Asherah pole, as Ahab king of Israel had done. He bowed down to all the starry hosts and worshiped them.

4 He built altars in the temple of the LORD, of which the LORD had said, "In Jerusalem I will put my Name."

5 In both courts of the temple of the LORD, he built altars to all the starry hosts.

6 He sacrificed his own son in the fire, practiced sorcery and divination, and consulted mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the eyes of the LORD, provoking him to anger.


King Manasseh lived in open and rebellious idolatry and if that was not enough, he sacrificed his own son (innocent blood) to these false gods to try to gain their favor. God is about to make their ears tingle.


2 Kings 21:12-13 (NIV)

12 Therefore this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: I am going to bring such disaster on Jerusalem and Judah that the ears of everyone who hears of it will tingle.

13 I will stretch out over Jerusalem the measuring line used against Samaria and the plumb line used against the house of Ahab. I will wipe out Jerusalem as one wipes a dish, wiping it and turning it upside down.


This ear tingling announcement of God was the beginning of the end for the nation of Judah and Jerusalem. That brings up the final application for the word “tingle”. Just a few years after the time of evil King Manasseh the prophet Jeremiah comes on the scene in Jerusalem. Jerusalem and the Holy Temple will be totally destroyed during the time of Jeremiah.


Can you guess what sins were being committed against God in the time of Jeremiah that brought this final application of tingling ears? Idolatry and the shedding of innocent blood!


Jeremiah 19:3-5 (NIV)

3 and say, 'Hear the word of the LORD, O kings of Judah and people of Jerusalem. This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Listen! I am going to bring a disaster on this place that will make the ears of everyone who hears of it tingle.

4 For they have forsaken me and made this a place of foreign gods; they have burned sacrifices in it to gods that neither they nor their fathers nor the kings of Judah ever knew, and they have filled this place with the blood of the innocent.

5 They have built the high places of Baal to burn their sons in the fire as offerings to Baal--something I did not command or mention, nor did it enter my mind.


Some of you might wonder what this has to do with us today. Can you see it? Are your ears tingling right now? The Word of the Lord has become rare today. Many preachers refuse to take a stand against the evil of our day. We are called to be the Light that holds back the darkness. But many are silent, and the Word of the Lord has become rare. Can you see the idolatry (modern day materialism) and the shedding of innocent blood-abortion? Are your ears tingling?


Jeremiah took a public stand against idolatry and the shedding of innocent blood. The Word of the Lord was not rare in Jeremiah’s life. Jeremiah spoke the Word publicly and guess what happened to Jeremiah?


Jeremiah 20:1-2 (NIV)

1 When the priest Pashhur son of Immer, the chief officer in the temple of the LORD, heard Jeremiah prophesying these things,

2 he had Jeremiah the prophet beaten and put in the stocks at the Upper Gate of Benjamin at the LORD's temple.


The priest (Pashhur) had the prophet Jeremiah beaten and put in stocks. Why? Because Jeremiah’s ears were tingling while the rest of the people refused to listen. Are your ears tingling today?


There have been some 60 million children sacrificed to the altar of self in America since 1973. America has traded the One True God for idols that are crafted by their own hands (materialism) and the Word of the Lord has become rare. Many preachers have become silent and complicit. Are your ears tingling? How did you expect the Lord to respond?


Psalm 32:6-7 (NLT)

6 Therefore, let all the godly pray to you while there is still time, that they may not drown in the floodwaters of judgment.

7 For you are my hiding place; you protect me from trouble. You surround me with songs of victory.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry about a

strange and shocking event

tuesday, september 8, 2020

We are living in a time when “strange and shocking” seems to be a daily occurrence. There are strange and shocking things happening every day now. Unprecedented political chaos, lawlessness, injustice, pending economic collapse and all in the midst of a pandemic. In fact, people are getting so use to these strange and shocking events that they are no longer strange and shocking at all. This is when the trouble really comes...when strange and shocking becomes the new normal and the new normal blinds the people to the strange and shocking changes that are taking place all around them.


The Bible describes a strange and shocking event that has taken place in the past and is also occurring in our present day. The people of the past reached a point that the strange and shocking transformation of their society became the new normal and the people could no longer discern the truth about normal and abnormal.


This strange and shocking event happened when a people (Israel) that once knew and worshipped God turned their back on God and worshipped the works of their hands (idols) instead of the One that delivered them out of the bondage of Egypt.


These three verses below describe how Israel lived before this strange and shocking change came to their land.


Jeremiah 2:1-3 (NLT)

1 The LORD gave me another message. He said, 2 “Go and shout this message to Jerusalem. This is what the LORD says: “I remember how eager you were to please me as a young bride long ago, how you loved me and followed me even through the barren wilderness.

3 In those days Israel was holy to the LORD, the first of his children. All who harmed his people were declared guilty, and disaster fell on them. I, the LORD, have spoken!”


That’s how it used to be. That was normal, but something slowly began to change. The people seemed to forget about God while they lived in their success and prosperity. They stopped listening to God and started worshipping their stuff, instead of the One that gave them that stuff.


Jeremiah 2:4-6 (NLT)

4 Listen to the word of the LORD, people of Jacob—all you families of Israel! 5 This is what the LORD says: “What did your ancestors find wrong with me that led them to stray so far from me? They worshiped worthless idols, only to become worthless themselves. 6 They did not ask, ‘Where is the LORD who brought us safely out of Egypt and led us through the barren wilderness— a land of deserts and pits, a land of drought and death, where no one lives or even travels?’


This is when the Strange and Shocking event is realized. It isn’t realized or seen in Israel. No, it is realized and announced from heaven. Israel can’t see the strange and shocking change that has taken place in their land, but heaven sees it. Heaven declares this strange and shocking event.


Jeremiah 2:10-12 (NLT)

10 “Go west and look in the land of Cyprus; go east and search through the land of Kedar. Has anyone ever heard of anything as strange as this? 11 Has any nation ever traded its gods for new ones, even though they are not gods at all? Yet my people have exchanged their glorious God for worthless idols! 12 The heavens are shocked at such a thing and shrink back in horror and dismay,” says the LORD.


It takes a lot to shock the heavens! The heavens are appalled! This is indeed strange and shocking. The nation of Israel had traded in their Glorious and all-powerful God for a new one and this new one is worthless and powerless. This is a strange and shocking event.


Can you see it? I see our nation doing the exact same thing today. Many today are trading in their Glorious all-powerful God for worthless idols, cheap substitutes. This is a strange and shocking event. Can you see it? It’s not strange and shocking if you can’t see it, if you don’t even notice/realize it.


The result of this strange and shocking abandonment of God today will be the same as it was in the time of Israel. Two evils! Two strange and shocking evils will bring ruin to the people who have abandoned their God.


Jeremiah 2:13 (NLT)

13 “For my people have done two evil things: They have abandoned me— the fountain of living water. And they have dug for themselves cracked cisterns that can hold no water at all!


I find our current American cultural trends to be strange and shocking, but I don’t see them changing any time soon apart from a great spiritual awakening and revival. I’m afraid that this has become America’s new normal. The heavens are shocked, but America has settled into this new normal. But there is one giant problem inside this new normal. Cracked cisterns don’t hold water. We will die of thirst without this water.


John 4:10-14 (NLT)

10 Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.” 11 “But sir, you don’t have a rope or a bucket,” she said, “and this well is very deep. Where would you get this living water? 12 And besides, do you think you’re greater than our ancestor Jacob, who gave us this well? How can you offer better water than he and his sons and his animals enjoyed?”

13 Jesus replied, “Anyone who drinks this water will soon become thirsty again. 14 But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

anxiety and fear

monday, August 31, 2020

This Covid-19 pandemic has brought much anxiety and fear to mankind. Are we in the final hours of the last days referred to in the Bible? Many people are now asking questions about biblical prophecy, about the antichrist and the coming tribulation. Should Christians be fearful about the coming antichrist, the mark of the beast or the time of wrath that will come to the earth during the reign of the antichrist? I would like to address those anxious questions by revealing the truth from the Bible itself, our absolute source of truth.


The Bible clearly states that there is a supernatural force that is currently holding back the man of lawlessness (the antichrist). There is a Light that is currently holding back the darkness. Jesus refers to that “Light” as the “Light of the World—the Church” (Matthew 5:14). The Church is the body of Christ and His eternal light shines from within His Church (John 9:4-5, John 8:12). The Church is currently the temple or dwelling place of the Holy Spirit of Christ. The Holy Spirit filled Church is the only power sufficient to hold back the approaching darkness, the coming power of Satan that will be manifest in the antichrist, the man of lawlessness.


2 Thessalonians 2:5-6 (NLT)

5 Don’t you remember that I told you about all this when I was with you?

6 And you know what is holding him [man of lawlessness-the antichrist] back, for he can be revealed only when his time comes.


We see lawlessness breaking out in the streets of many American cities today. Our Kentucky Senator (Rand Paul) and his wife were threatened by a mob in the streets of Washington DC just this past week. Lawlessness seems to be breaking out everywhere!


There is currently a supernatural power on the earth that is restraining this lawlessness, preventing its unlimited expansion around the earth. That power is the true Holy Spirit filled Church of Jesus Christ...the Light holding back the darkness. But one day, the Lord is going to remove that restraining power from the earth by suddenly taking His Church into heaven. When the Light of the World departs, the darkness will take over the earth...bringing unrestrained evil, destruction and chaos called the great tribulation.


1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 (NLT)

16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians who have died will rise from their graves. 17 Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.


Yes, I believe this caught up (rapture) event of the Church will take place before the man of lawlessness is revealed and empowered by Satan. I base that statement on the Holy Scripture.


2 Thessalonians 2:7-10 (NLT)

7 For this lawlessness is already at work secretly, and it will remain secret until the one who is holding it back steps out of the way. 8 Then the man of lawlessness will be revealed, but the Lord Jesus will kill him with the breath of his mouth and destroy him by the splendor of his coming. 9 This man will come to do the work of Satan with counterfeit power and signs and miracles. 10 He will use every kind of evil deception to fool those on their way to destruction, because they refuse to love and accept the truth that would save them.


Yes, this pandemic is real and yes, the lawlessness is frightening and expanding. Yes, the Church may have to experience a time of great suffering and hardship before that trumpet sounds and the Lord comes for His bride. But I’ve got some really good news today. The Bible tells us that we are not destined for God’s anger and wrath. No, we are destined for His glorious salvation! Our eternal future has been secured through the blood of Christ, our Redeemer and Lord.


1 Thessalonians 5:9-11 (NLT)

9 For God chose to save us through our Lord Jesus Christ, not to pour out his anger on us.

10 Christ died for us so that, whether we are dead or alive when he returns, we can live with him forever. 11 So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.


I pray that you find encouragement in these promises of God today. We live in unprecedented times, but the Lord has told us in advance how all this is going to play out in the end. No man knows the day or the hour that Jesus will call the Church into His presence, but the true Church will have a sense that the time is drawing near. How will we know? We are the CHILDREN OF THE LIGHT, and the Light of Christ will reveal that we are getting very close.


1 Thessalonians 5:1-5 (NLT)

1 Now concerning how and when all this will happen, dear brothers and sisters, we don’t really need to write you. 2 For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night. 3 When people are saying, “Everything is peaceful and secure,” then disaster will fall on them as suddenly as a pregnant woman’s labor pains begin. And there will be no escape. 4 But you aren’t in the dark about these things, dear brothers and sisters, and you won’t be surprised when the day of the Lord comes like a thief.

5 For you are all children of the light and of the day; we don’t belong to darkness and night.


Be encouraged today. Allow the Light of Christ shine brightly in your lives during this time of approaching darkness. Be strong and very courageous because all of God’s promises belong to the children of the Light.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about the timing

monday, August 24, 2020

Do you think you are living in the time of the Covid-19 pandemic by accident? Do you think it’s just bad luck that you live in the time of political chaos, extreme lawlessness while churches seem to be abandoning the Word of God? Is it possible that we are living here on this earth at exactly the right time in human history and all of this is part of God’s marvelous plan?


Let’s face it, no one wants to live in a time of calamity or hardship. It breaks my heart to see kids walking around in masks. It sickens me to turn on the news and see riots and looting in the streets of American cities. But what about the timing? Why now and why us?


The Old Testament prophet Jeremiah was born into such a turbulent time. The nation of Judah was about to fall under the judgment of God. No one would want to be living during the time that this great judgment of God was coming to Judah. It is in that moment that God reveals something to Jeremiah that should help each of us to understand our place and time in the world today.


Jeremiah 1:4-5 (NLT2)

4 The LORD gave me this message:

5 “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.”


Jeremiah didn’t know it, but God had formed him, brought him into existence for this very moment in human history. God was going to use Jeremiah in a powerful way to reveal himself to the nations before and during the time of calamity. Was this calling or timing easy...NO! Was it important that Jeremiah understand this divine calling and timing...YES! The calling of Jeremiah and the time of calamity around Jeremiah became a very heavy burden, but it was all part of God’s divine and holy plan.


God didn’t just appoint and raise up Jeremiah for a certain time, God also supernaturally equipped Jeremiah for that appointed time of calamity.


Jeremiah 1:6-10 (NLT2)

6 “O Sovereign LORD,” I said, “I can’t speak for you! I’m too young!”

7 The LORD replied, “Don’t say, ‘I’m too young,’ for you must go wherever I send you and say whatever I tell you.

8 And don’t be afraid of the people, for I will be with you and will protect you. I, the LORD, have spoken!”

9 Then the LORD reached out and touched my mouth and said, “Look, I have put my words in your mouth!

10 Today I appoint you to stand up against nations and kingdoms. Some you must uproot and tear down, destroy and overthrow. Others you must build up and plant.”


The message of God to Jeremiah was not a message that the people wanted to hear, but God’s justice and mercy required the message to be spoken to the people. The message of God was heavy, but the Word of God was clear...VIOLENCE and DESTRUCTION were coming. It looks like Jeremiah tried to hold that heavy and dreadful message back, but the supernatural power of God was stronger than Jeremiah. Jeremiah was born for this time...God had raised him up for this very moment in human history.


Jeremiah 20:7-9 (NLT2)

7 O LORD, you misled me, and I allowed myself to be misled. You are stronger than I am, and you overpowered me. Now I am mocked every day; everyone laughs at me.

8 When I speak, the words burst out. Violence and destruction!” I shout. So these messages from the LORD have made me a household joke.

9 But if I say I’ll never mention the LORD or speak in his name, his word burns in my heart like a fire. It’s like a fire in my bones! I am worn out trying to hold it in! I can’t do it!


The people of Judah tried everything to stop the Word of God from coming out of Jeremiah’s mouth, but they couldn’t stop him. They threw him in a deep cistern to shut him up, but God delivered him out of the dark hole. Jeremiah lived through a great time of suffering and he watched VIOLENCE and DESTRUCTION fall upon Jerusalem. In the end, Jeremiah survived the fall of Jerusalem.


Some of you might wonder what this ancient story has to do with us today. God is still raising up people for such a time as this. You and I are not alive today by accident or coincidence. We are here as witnesses of God, for such a time as this. He has placed His Holy Spirit inside of us to reveal His Word to the world in this present time of political chaos, Covid-19, extreme lawlessness and to the church that is struggling to hold onto the Word of God. This is our time, and this is our mission. This should be and can be the finest hour of the true church of Jesus Christ. We are the Jeremiah’s of this generation. The Apostle Paul declares it to each of us today:


2 Timothy 1:8-10 (NLT2)

8 So never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. And don’t be ashamed of me, either, even though I’m in prison for him. With the strength God gives you, be ready to suffer with me for the sake of the Good News.

9 For God saved us and called us to live a holy life. He did this, not because we deserved it, but because that was his plan from before the beginning of time—to show us his grace through Christ Jesus.

10 And now he has made all of this plain to us by the appearing of Christ Jesus, our Savior. He broke the power of death and illuminated the way to life and immortality through the Good News.


My prayer for the church today is this...may the words of Jeremiah be our words today... “But if I say I’ll never mention the LORD or speak in his name, his word burns in my heart like a fire. It’s like a fire in my bones! I am worn out trying to hold it in! I can’t do it!”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the next time

monday, August 10, 2020

We live much of lives in a hopeful expectation of “the next time” or putting off important or urgent decisions that seem difficult or heavy in the present time. The next time I’ll get that promotion. The next time we’ll stop there and do that. We’ll take time for that issue the next time...we’ll deal with that the next time.


This next time comment is always based on the expectancy of having more time. That bring me to my question for today. Will there always be time for a next time, a chance to do what you could have or should have done this time? The Book of Hebrews talks about a next time event for Jesus that defines time itself.


Hebrews 9:27 (NLT)

And just as each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment,


It’s a truth that cannot be denied...each person is destined to die and after that comes judgment. It’s the next verse (vs. 28) in Hebrews that reveals the ultimate reality of the next time.


Hebrews 9:28 (NLT)

28 so also Christ died once for all time as a sacrifice to take away the sins of many people. He will come again, not to deal with our sins, but to bring salvation to all who are eagerly waiting for him.


Jesus left this planet some 2000 years ago to take his place at the right hand of the Father in heaven. As Jesus was leaving, rising into the clouds from the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, angels revealed the next time to his watching disciples.


Acts 1:9-11 (NLT)

After saying this, he was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see him. 10 As they strained to see him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them. 11 “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!”


These two angels described the next time Jesus will come to the earth. The Book of Hebrews says this next time will not be to deal with sin, but to bring salvation. Jesus dealt with our sin the first time. The next time will be to bring salvation...but salvation to whom? This is a really big point of truth...salvation to whom? To all who are eagerly waiting for him.


Do you know what separates these eagerly waiting people from the rest of the world? They are called believers...believers that believe that Jesus’ first time coming was to pay the ransom price of their sin. They are now forgiven and free...their sin debt has been paid in full by the blood of the Lamb. For believers, there will not be any need to deal with their sin the next time Jesus comes. The next time will be to bring salvation and reward for all those who are anxiously and eagerly waiting for the next time.


May these final words from the Apostle Paul (before he was executed) help us to understand the joy of the next time.


2 Timothy 4:6-8 (NLT)

6 As for me, my life has already been poured out as an offering to God. The time of my death is near. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful.

8 And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing.


That same Book of Hebrews warns all mankind about the fatal error of waiting too long for the next time.


Hebrews 3:12-15 (NLT)

12 Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters. Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God.

13 You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God.

14 For if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ.

15 Remember what it says: “Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the secret of contentment

Monday, july 27, 2020

Are you content in your current situation? Are you satisfied with your life right now? What about during a pandemic...are you content and satisfied? Is that even possible? The answer to these questions is found in the Bible. Let me explain.


The Apostle Paul wrote a letter to the Church at Philippi while he was in a Roman prison. How could anyone be content and satisfied in prison? Wrongly accused in prison, at that! How? That is the SECRET that I want to discuss today.


Philippians 4:12-13 (NLT)

12 I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.

13 For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.


Paul learned the secret of contentment. Contentment isn’t based on having plenty. Contentment is based on knowing the secret root and source of contentment. Do you know the secret and its source? Paul’s letter wasn’t written to keep the secret, but to reveal the secret to others. So, what is the secret of contentment and how does a person come to know this secret?


I can give you a hint...the secret wasn’t revealed in a time of ease and comfort. No, the secret was revealed in a time of suffering and hardship. Are you sure you want to know the secret of contentment? Listen to how Paul describes his life in Christ.


2 Corinthians 11:24-27 (NLT)

24 Five different times the Jewish leaders gave me thirty-nine lashes.

25 Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea.

26 I have traveled on many long journeys. I have faced danger from rivers and from robbers. I have faced danger from my own people, the Jews, as well as from the Gentiles. I have faced danger in the cities, in the deserts, and on the seas. And I have faced danger from men who claim to be believers but are not.

27 I have worked hard and long, enduring many sleepless nights. I have been hungry and thirsty and have often gone without food. I have shivered in the cold, without enough clothing to keep me warm.


How is it possible for suffering and hardship to reveal the secret of contentment? Do you know? Has the secret been revealed to you? The Apostle Paul was called by God to reveal this wonderful secret of contentment to the Gentile world (non-Jewish people).


Ephesians 3:8-9 (NLT)

8 Though I am the least deserving of all God’s people, he graciously gave me the privilege of telling the Gentiles about the endless treasures available to them in Christ.

9 I was chosen to explain to everyone this mysterious plan that God, the Creator of all things, had kept secret from the beginning.


What is the endless/eternal treasure that Paul was chosen to reveal to the world? What is this mysterious plan that was kept secret from the beginning and how does this secret bring contentment during a time of hardship and suffering? Do you know this secret? This secret is usually revealed in times of suffering and hardship...that’s when the secret is unlocked by glory.


Colossians 1:24-27 (NLT)

24 I am glad when I suffer for you in my body, for I am participating in the sufferings of Christ that continue for his body, the church.

25 God has given me the responsibility of serving his church by proclaiming his entire message to you.

26 This message was kept secret for centuries and generations past, but now it has been revealed to God’s people.

27 For God wanted them to know that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory.


There it is! That is the secret of contentment. Do you see it? “And this is the secret: Christ lives in you.” Yes, Christ and His message have always been opposed by the world and that has always brought some level of suffering and hardship to the followers of Christ. That is when the secret is truly revealed by glory. We do not suffer alone! This is the contentment, and this is the peace that passes human understanding. Yes, we share in the suffering of Christ, but we do not suffer alone.


1 Peter 4:12-14 (NLT)

12 Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you.

13 Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world.

14 So be happy when you are insulted for being a Christian, for then the glorious Spirit of God rests upon you.


“For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.” I have that Scripture hanging on my wall. That Scripture doesn’t mean I can do anything and everything I want to do? Some people has misinterpreted that verse. I can’t fly, I can’t dance, and I will never compete in the Olympics in gymnastics. That is not the meaning or context of that verse. That verse is given in the context of suffering and contentment. That verse describes what happens to a person when the secret is revealed by glory. We do not walk alone in times of suffering and hardship...Christ lives in us. Even in the valley of the shadow of death....Christ lives in us. This is the Secret and now, its not a secret anymore.


Romans 8:17 (NLT)

17 And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

surviving the plague

Monday, July 20, 2020

Yes, Covid-19 is a plague. Webster’s dictionary defines a plague as, “an epidemic disease causing a high rate of mortality...pestilence.” Covid-19 is called a pandemic, which means this plague has affected the entire world. As Christians, we believe that God is sovereign over the kingdoms of mankind...so we must then also believe that God has either initiated this plague Himself as a judgment, or He has allowed it to happen as a judgment. Either way, God is now and will always be in absolute control.


This is not the first time that God has used a plague to bring judgment and reveal his absolute authority to mankind. God brought 10 plagues upon Egypt in the time of Moses. Is there anything to be learned from those 10 Egyptian plagues today? Is there any spiritual application to our current pandemic?


As we study the Holy Scriptures, we find that the first 3 plagues (water to blood, frogs, gnats) seemed to affect everyone, the Egyptians and the Hebrews alike. But something supernatural was going to happen at the fourth plague of flies. God tells Moses to clearly announce His desire for the Hebrews to gather to worship Him...do not prevent my people from worshipping me or the fourth plague will come, but this time with a difference.


Exodus 8:20-21 (NLT)

20 Then the LORD told Moses, “Get up early in the morning and stand in Pharaoh’s way as he goes down to the river. Say to him, ‘This is what the LORD says: Let my people go, so they can worship me. 21 If you refuse, then I will send swarms of flies on you, your officials, your people, and all the houses. The Egyptian homes will be filled with flies, and the ground will be covered with them.


This 4th plague will be different than the other three, this plague will only come upon the Egyptians. The Israelites will be spared.


Exodus 8:22-23 (NLT)

22 But this time I will spare the region of Goshen, where my people live. No flies will be found there. Then you will know that I am the LORD and that I am present even in the heart of your land. 23 I will make a clear distinction between my people and your people. This miraculous sign will happen tomorrow.’”


The Lord, through Moses, told Pharaoh that the next plague would come if he refused to allow the children of God to go, gather and worship. Can anyone see a modern-day pandemic parallel here? Pharaoh refused to let the children of God go and worship and the plague of flies came...followed by the plague of dying livestock.


Exodus 9:1-5 (NLT)

1 “Go back to Pharaoh,” the LORD commanded Moses. “Tell him, ‘This is what the LORD, the God of the Hebrews, says: Let my people go, so they can worship me.

2 If you continue to hold them and refuse to let them go, 3 the hand of the LORD will strike all your livestock—your horses, donkeys, camels, cattle, sheep, and goats—with a deadly plague.

4 But the LORD will again make a distinction between the livestock of the Israelites and that of the Egyptians. Not a single one of Israel’s animals will die! 5 The LORD has already set the time for the plague to begin. He has declared that he will strike the land tomorrow.’”


God made a distinction between those who belonged to Him and those who refused to belong to Him. It looks like God totally protected the children of Israel from plagues 4-10, even though the Bible doesn’t specifically say He protected them from the plague of boils and locust (plagues #6 & #8).


Everyone in the land experienced the first three plagues of God, but then God’s mercy began to make a distinction between those who belonged to Him and those who refused to acknowledge Him. Could this possibly have any application to us today?


It has always been interesting to me that God’s final plague, before the Passover deliverance, was the plague of darkness. You’ve heard it said that it is always darkest before the dawn. When plague #9, the plague of darkness came, it was not dark in Goshen. They could see in Goshen. There was light in Goshen. Goshen is where the children of God lived, and they could see the light in Goshen.


Exodus 10:21-23 (NLT)

21 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Lift your hand toward heaven, and the land of Egypt will be covered with a darkness so thick you can feel it.” 22 So Moses lifted his hand to the sky, and a deep darkness covered the entire land of Egypt for three days. 23 During all that time the people could not see each other, and no one moved. But there was light as usual where the people of Israel lived.


Three days of absolute darkness followed by the blood of the Lamb...the 10th and final plague. Can you see the light today? After three days of darkness...the blood of the Lamb would conquer death....death would Passover the children of God.


Matthew 20:19 (NLT)

19 Then they will hand him over to the Romans to be mocked, flogged with a whip, and crucified. But on the third day he will be raised from the dead.”


Can you see the light in the midst of this great plague today?


1 Thessalonians 5:4-5 (NLT)

4 But you aren’t in the dark about these things, dear brothers and sisters, and you won’t be surprised when the day of the Lord comes like a thief. 5 For you are all children of the light and of the day; we don’t belong to darkness and night.


Yes, even the children of God (Israel) had to endure the first three plagues, but God made a distinction between those who belonged to Him and the light began to shine in Goshen. God’s desire today is much like His desire in ancient Egypt. This is what the LORD says: Let my people go, so they can worship me.


I’m not sure what and how much the church will have to endure before the Lord comes to take His children, the bride of Christ home. I don’t know how much of this plague and future plagues/sufferings the church will have to endure? But I do know this...God makes a distinction between those who are His children and those who are not. The Blood of the Lamb is that distinction!


Revelation 3:10-13 (NLT)

10 “Because you have obeyed my command to persevere, I will protect you from the great time of testing that will come upon the whole world to test those who belong to this world.

11 I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take away your crown.

12 All who are victorious will become pillars in the Temple of my God, and they will never have to leave it. And I will write on them the name of my God, and they will be citizens in the city of my God—the new Jerusalem that comes down from heaven from my God. And I will also write on them my new name. 13 “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches. JESUS CHRIST...THE LAMB OF GOD


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the mask

monday, July 13, 2020

Moses wore a mask! Well, I think they actually called it a veil, but it served as a mask. Not to protect him or others from a mysterious virus, but to protect others from the glory, the illumination. Do you know about the mask of Moses? The Bible tells us that Moses spent 40 days in the glorious presence of God on Mount Sinai. I ask you to read (below) what happened when Moses departed from the glorious presence of God and made his way back down to the people of Israel.


Exodus 34:29-35 (NLT)

29 When Moses came down Mount Sinai carrying the two stone tablets inscribed with the terms of the covenant, he wasn’t aware that his face had become radiant because he had spoken to the LORD. 30 So when Aaron and the people of Israel saw the radiance of Moses’ face, they were afraid to come near him. 31 But Moses called out to them and asked Aaron and all the leaders of the community to come over, and he talked with them. 32 Then all the people of Israel approached him, and Moses gave them all the instructions the LORD had given him on Mount Sinai. 33 When Moses finished speaking with them, he covered his face with a veil.

34 But whenever he went into the Tent of Meeting to speak with the LORD, he would remove the veil until he came out again. Then he would give the people whatever instructions the LORD had given him, 35 and the people of Israel would see the radiant glow of his face. So he would put the veil over his face until he returned to speak with the LORD.


Moses got the glory of God on him! Moses experienced God’s illumination. The glorious presence of God illuminated the face of Moses...so much so that it brought fear to the people that looked upon Moses’ radiant face. The people were afraid to come close to Moses...so Moses wore a mask to quiet the fears of the people.


Moses had encountered the glory of God and Moses carried the Word of God to the people, written on stone tablets. The result was illumination and that illumination was frightening to those who had not yet been illuminated. The same is true today. The New Testament reveals the new illumination of God. I ask you to read about this new illumination and notice the mask/veil is also mentioned here.


2 Corinthians 3:7-18 (NLT)

7 The old way, with laws etched in stone, led to death, though it began with such glory that the people of Israel could not bear to look at Moses’ face. For his face shone with the glory of God, even though the brightness was already fading away. 8 Shouldn’t we expect far greater glory under the new way, now that the Holy Spirit is giving life? 9 If the old way, which brings condemnation, was glorious, how much more glorious is the new way, which makes us right with God! 10 In fact, that first glory was not glorious at all compared with the overwhelming glory of the new way. 11 So if the old way, which has been replaced, was glorious, how much more glorious is the new, which remains forever! 12 Since this new way gives us such confidence, we can be very bold.

13 We are not like Moses, who put a veil over his face so the people of Israel would not see the glory, even though it was destined to fade away. 14 But the people’s minds were hardened, and to this day whenever the old covenant is being read, the same veil covers their minds so they cannot understand the truth. And this veil can be removed only by believing in Christ.

15 Yes, even today when they read Moses’ writings, their hearts are covered with that veil, and they do not understand. 16 But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.

17 For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

18 So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.


Moses wore a veil to protect the people from the glory. The illumination was frightening to those who had not yet experienced the illumination. The church now operates in the new way of the Spirit. We are not like Moses, who put a veil over his face so the people of Israel would not see the glory (vs.13). The Spirit of the Lord cannot be veiled! Jesus told us to let this light shine. The church is the light of the world and we don’t hide or veil this light...bold illumination!


Matthew 5:14-16 (NLT)

14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.

15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.


The Apostle Paul tells us that Satan is actively working against the illumination of God. Satan wants to keep the light hidden behind the veil, blinding people and keeping them in the darkness. Sometimes it looks safe in the darkness, but that darkness is the enemy and absence of light.


2 Corinthians 4:3-4 (NLT)

3 If the Good News we preach is hidden behind a veil, it is hidden only from people who are perishing. 4 Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God.


Today’s email is not a covert attempt to influence people to wear or not wear a mask during this Covid-19 pandemic. No, my message today is not covert at all. I’m warning everyone, everywhere to seek after and operate under the illumination of the Spirit while there is time, because the darkness is approaching at great speed. The darkness is Satan’s attempt to veil the illumination, but the Spirit of Christ cannot be veiled.


1 Peter 2:6-9 (NLT)

6 As the Scriptures say, “I am placing a cornerstone in Jerusalem, chosen for great honor, and anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced.” 7 Yes, you who trust him recognize the honor God has given him. But for those who reject him, “The stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.” 8 And, “He is the stone that makes people stumble, the rock that makes them fall.” They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them. 9 But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the ultimate murder mystery

monday, july 6, 2020

It may sound strange coming from a preacher, but I love a good murder mystery. Of course, I’m referring to the fictional ones. I think I’ve seen every “Columbo” that has ever been made and some of them more than once. Columbo always had a special “wisdom” that allowed him to solve the mystery. He saw things that others couldn’t see. There is something about unraveling a mystery that intrigues me. That brings me to today’s topic...the ultimate murder mystery revealed.


Let’s face it, from a human perspective Jesus was murdered. He was an innocent man who was put to death by some jealous Jews who convinced the Romans to go along. At least that’s the human perspective. But what really happened and what is this mystery behind the murder of Jesus?


1 Corinthians 2:7-8 (NLT)

7 No, the wisdom we speak of is the mystery of God—his plan that was previously hidden, even though he made it for our ultimate glory before the world began. 8 But the rulers of this world have not understood it; if they had, they would not have crucified our glorious Lord.


The Apostle Paul helps us unravel this spiritual mystery. This was a plan of God from the beginning, yes even before the world began. The rulers on earth didn’t understand the mystery...if they did...they wouldn’t have murdered the Son of God. So, what is the mystery and why did God plan the death of His Only Son?


Ephesians 1:9-11 (NLT)

9 God has now revealed to us his mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill his own good pleasure. 10 And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. 11 Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan.


That which seemed like murder, was actually the fulfillment and good pleasure of God’s mysterious and marvelous plan. The death of Jesus would be followed by a supernatural resurrection and ascension into glory. This was a mystery to everyone involved. But why? Why the murder and why the resurrection. Why was this God’s good pleasure? How was this murder going to unite us with God and how was this murder going to bring glory to Jesus? Do you know the mystery...has it been revealed to you?


Let’s begin to unravel the mystery of Jesus himself. Let’s start with glorious Jesus...does this help?


1 Timothy 3:16 (NLT)

16 Without question, this is the great mystery of our faith: Christ was revealed in a human body and vindicated by the Spirit. He was seen by angels and announced to the nations. He was believed in throughout the world and taken to heaven in glory.


Not enough? Do you need still more clues to understand this murder mystery? Is it possible to understand this murder mystery without God’s help?


Ephesians 3:3-5 (NLT)

3 As I briefly wrote earlier, God himself revealed his mysterious plan to me. 4 As you read what I have written, you will understand my insight into this plan regarding Christ. 5 God did not reveal it to previous generations, but now by his Spirit he has revealed it to his holy apostles and prophets.


God, through the Holy Spirit has revealed this ultimate murder mystery of Christ to the Apostles and prophets. Maybe their writings can reveal it to us today. Do you know this mystery? Can it be solved by humans today? Check out the next verse...


Ephesians 3:6 (NLT)

6 And this is God’s plan: Both Gentiles and Jews who believe the Good News share equally in the riches inherited by God’s children. Both are part of the same body, and both enjoy the promise of blessings because they belong to Christ Jesus.


“God’s plan-God’s children”...there’s the clue. Did that help? Have you had your Columbo moment yet...murder mystery solved? God’s children belong to Christ Jesus. Who are they? What did the murder of Jesus have to do with the promises of God to Abraham, to Israel? And how did Jesus’ death open up the covenant promises of God to the whole world?


Genesis 12:1-3 (NLT)

1 The LORD had said to Abram, “Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you. 2 I will make you into a great nation. I will bless you and make you famous, and you will be a blessing to others. 3 I will bless those who bless you and curse those who treat you with contempt. All the families on earth will be blessed through you.”


OK, enough clues. The real reason I like murder mysteries is they are always solved and revealed at the end of the show. I wouldn’t like any of them if the mystery was left unsolved. So here goes...this the ultimate murder mystery revealed.


Colossians 1:26-27 (NLT)

26 This message was kept secret for centuries and generations past, but now it has been revealed to God’s people. 27 For God wanted them to know that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory.


The death of Jesus Christ was not a murder at all. It was a sacrificial offering made by God the Father. The Lamb of God had come to take away the sins of the world. Jesus voluntarily laid down His life to redeem us from the grave, from the great power of sin and death. Opening a way for us to become the family of God, the children of God, who belong to Christ.


This great act of mysterious love has now made a way for anyone (Jew or Gentile) to be made right with God through faith. Faith is believing that all the mysteries of God have been revealed through the Son-Jesus. Faith in Jesus makes us the children of God. This is the ultimate murder mystery revealed.


John 1:10-13 (NLT)

10 He came into the very world he created, but the world didn’t recognize him. 11 He came to his own people, and even they rejected him. 12 But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. 13 They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.


Welcome to the family of God...mystery solved.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about encouragement

Monday, June 29, 2020

I remember someone asking Wayne Smith a question before he died. They asked Wayne what the church needed most in these difficult times. Wayne’s answer was “Encouragement”. Today, I would like to encourage you. But I want to set the standard for today’s encouraging word. Real encouragement must be based on truth. Don’t encourage me with a lie, a guess or your opinion...I want truth! Encouragement based on a lie will ultimately bring discouragement and disaster. Today, my encouragement will be based on Truth.


Do you know when a person has the greatest need for encouragement? When they are overwhelmed and afraid of the challenge that lies before them. Encouragement is to inspire someone with courage. The church today needs to be inspired with courage...to be encouraged.


I begin with the story of Moses and Joshua. How would you like to walk in the shadow of Moses? That was the story of Joshua for much of his young life...before God’s anger broke out against Moses and the people who were still in the wilderness. In that anger, God told Moses that he was not going to be allowed to enter or to lead the children of Israel into the Promised Land. Instead, Joshua was going lead them in. Can you imagine how overwhelming that call would be to Joshua? Then God tells Moses to do something very specific for Joshua...”ENCOURAGE HIM”...inspire him with courage.


Deuteronomy 1:37-38 (NLT)

37 “And the LORD was also angry with me because of you. He said to me, ‘Moses, not even you will enter the Promised Land! 38 Instead, your assistant, Joshua son of Nun, will lead the people into the land. Encourage him, for he will lead Israel as they take possession of it.


Moses carried out God’s instructions and encouraged Joshua. This encouragement was based on truth, not emotions or opinions. This encouragement was based on God’s will and God’s way...not Moses’. It looks like Moses tried to negotiate this transfer of power with the Lord, but finally accepted this command of God to encourage Joshua instead...inspiring Joshua with courage.


Deuteronomy 3:26-28 (NLT)

26 “But the LORD was angry with me because of you, and he would not listen to me. ‘That’s enough!’ he declared. ‘Speak of it no more. 27 But go up to Pisgah Peak, and look over the land in every direction. Take a good look, but you may not cross the Jordan River. 28 Instead, commission Joshua and encourage and strengthen him, for he will lead the people across the Jordan. He will give them all the land you now see before you as their possession.’


So, how can this background of truth from the Word of God encourage us today? Can you guess? First, we have history to help us see. Everything God promised to Moses and Joshua came true exactly as promised. Moses did encourage Joshua and Joshua did lead the children of Israel into the Promised Land. You might be reading this right now and say that you’re very happy for Moses and Joshua, but you don’t quite see how that encourages you in your present life circumstance.


Do you understand that God has made some very specific promises to you about entering the Promised Land through Christ? Do you know that God has specifically revealed an encouraging truth to Christians in these last days? The Gospel of Jesus Christ is also referred to as The Good News of Jesus Christ. Good News is always the antidote to discouragement! Good news about the very certain promises of God are the greatest cure of discouragement and despair.


1 Thessalonians 3:1-4 (NLT)

1 Finally, when we could stand it no longer, we decided to stay alone in Athens,

2 and we sent Timothy to visit you. He is our brother and God’s co-worker in proclaiming the Good News of Christ. We sent him to strengthen you, to encourage you in your faith,

3 and to keep you from being shaken by the troubles you were going through. But you know that we are destined for such troubles. 4 Even while we were with you, we warned you that troubles would soon come—and they did, as you well know.


Troubles have come to our land, our world (pandemic and lawlessness), and the Good News still stands firm. The promises of God regarding the Promised Land called Heaven still stand...just over the Jordan River. This encouraging Word of Truth comes directly from the Lord. This time delivered via the Apostle Paul instead of Moses.


1 Thessalonians 4:15-18 (NLT)

15 We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians who have died will rise from their graves. 17 Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. 18 So encourage each other with these words.


This particular encouragement of God about our coming Promised Land called Heaven is based on truth, but it only works on believers. This truth only encourages the believers who actually believe it. Did it work on you? Are you encouraged? Are you inspired with courage?


It was the powerful promise and presence of God that delivered Joshua and the children of Israel into the Promised Land. It’s called faith! Joshua believed God and was encouraged by the Truth of God’s Word. God promised and God delivered! The same still holds true today.


Joshua 1:7-9 (NLT)

7 Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do. 8 Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. 9 This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”


It is highly unlikely you will find this type of encouragement in isolation. That’s why this Truth from Hebrews 10:25 still applies today, even more today...as we see the day of His return drawing hear.


Hebrews 10:25 (NLT)

25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.


Be inspired with courage today!

Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about lawlessness

Monday, June 22, 2020

Lawlessness...not restrained or controlled by law...illegal. That’s how Webster’s dictionary defines the word. Every civilized society finds its origin in the establishment of laws by which the people must live. These laws define right and wrong, acceptable and unacceptable. These laws create an environment where people can live peaceful lives, in harmony with each other and the government that has been put in place to establish and enforce those laws.


Most of us have watched “Wild West” television movies that depict a time in American history when there was “lawlessness” in some remote western towns. The absence of law and law enforcement (a sheriff and a judge) brought chaos to the people of those western towns. Those TV programs usually revealed a brave sheriff that would come to town and bring law and order. That brave sheriff would run off the lawless rebels and bring peace to the struggling town. At least, that’s how it works on TV.


We are watching the emergence of a great lawlessness...not restrained or controlled by law. Some have now come to the conclusion that laws are the very thing that limit their freedoms. Some have concluded that they can and should form their own groups and establish their own laws...based on the consensus of their group. There is a group in Seattle that has taken over part of the city and established their own laws...running out anyone that refuses to submit to their new self-ordained authority. This is starting to look like an old western movie. Where is the sheriff, where is the judge? Where is the law and order? Can justice come from lawlessness?


Where does this lawlessness come from and where will this lawlessness take us as a nation/world? Can right come from lawlessness? Can justice come from lawlessness? Can you see it? Can you see the signs? Do you believe in signs? Do you think it’s a coincidence that this lawlessness comes while we are experiencing a worldwide plague? Do you think it’s a coincidence that this lawlessness comes while our nation/world, and even some churches, have abandoned the laws of God which determine right and wrong? Can you see it? Can you see the signs? Do you believe in signs?


The Apostle Paul reveals the events that lead up the return of Christ to this earth. Paul says the return of Jesus will be like a thief in the night. But then Paul announces something very curious and amazing. Can you see it?


1 Thessalonians 5:1-5 (NLT)

1 Now concerning how and when all this will happen, dear brothers and sisters, we don’t really need to write you. 2 For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night. 3 When people are saying, “Everything is peaceful and secure,” then disaster will fall on them as suddenly as a pregnant woman’s labor pains begin. And there will be no escape. 4 But you aren’t in the dark about these things, dear brothers and sisters, and you won’t be surprised when the day of the Lord comes like a thief.

5 For you are all children of the light and of the day; we don’t belong to darkness and night.


The above Scripture comes immediately after the Apostle Paul reveals how Jesus is going to come in the clouds to take His bride, the church (the rapture). Jesus will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night to some, but not to everyone. Some people will be able to see and know because they live and walk in the light of Truth, the light of Christ. They won’t know the exact day or hour, but they will know the season. They will see and understand the signs. This is how Jesus describes those who will have eyes to see...


Luke 21:28 (NLT)

28 So when all these things begin to happen, stand and look up, for your salvation is near!”


One of my spiritual heroes is Bob Russell. Bob has been a clear and consistent voice of truth in our generation. God has given him eyes to see and Bob has a unique way of communicating biblical truth. Bob published his weekly blog online last night and I would like to share it with you today. It is shown below exactly as it was published. As you read it, I ask you this question...can you see?


Satan’s Master Plan...by Bob Russell

Written on June 21, 2020


Most people underestimate the power of the devil. We imagine the prince of darkness tempting a grade school boy with pornography or enticing a high school girl to cheat on an exam. He does that…and does it well. But the Bible refers to Satan as “the prince of this world” and “the god of this age,” He offered Jesus “all the kingdoms of the world” if He would just bow down and worship him.


Satan’s ultimate goal is world dominion. Our adversary is a fallen archangel who has some supernatural power. He knows his time is short and is determined to kill, steal, and destroy as much of God’s creation as possible before he is thrown into the fiery pit prepared for him and his minions. In the meantime, the father of lies is making every effort to drag as many people into hell with him as he can.


The second chapter of 2 Thessalonians provides a glimpse into Satan’s master plan and helps make sense of recent events. The current world chaos is too well orchestrated to be mere coincidence. It speaks of an evil, sinister force working behind the scenes to counter God’s desire for peace and goodwill for all men. Not all students of Bible prophecy would agree with my interpretation. Yet the scripture warns, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12).


Second Thessalonians 2 prophecies that in the last days a villainous world-leader, whom Paul identifies as ‘the man of lawlessness,” will ascend to power out of nowhere. “He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God” (2 Thessalonians 2:4).


In my childhood, I heard preachers insist that someday a devious, charismatic leader would usher the world into a global economy and a universal religion. This Satan-inspired tyrant would promise peace and safety but lead the world into chaos and war. Anyone who resists him would be ineligible to buy or sell anything and be bullied into submission.


That idea is based on several Scriptures. The prophet Daniel wrote, “The people of the ruler who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end will come like a flood” (Dan. 9:26) The Apostle Paul calls him “the man of lawlessness” who is “doomed to destruction” (2 Thess. 2:3-4). The Apostle John predicted, “the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour”(1 John 2:18). In Revelation, he’s identified as “a beast coming out of the sea,” “… the dragon (Satan) gave the beast his power and his throne and great authority,” “the whole world was astonished and followed the beast” (Rev. 13: 2-7).


Commentator David Guzik explains, “The Antichrist will look wonderful, be charming and successful. He will be the ultimate winner and appear as an angel of light. In this sense, the Antichrist will be a satanic messiah instead of the true Messiah, Jesus Christ.”


So today, when I hear conversations about “A New World Order,” “Global initiatives,” “International law,” and “social revolution,” my spiritual antenna goes up. When the World Health Organization shuts down the entire planet for weeks with a warning of a pandemic, it’s evidence of how receptive the world is to universal oversight. It also demonstrates how vulnerable we are to embracing a charismatic leader who would promise assurance in a time of panic.


The Bible teaches the antichrist’s efforts to establish world peace will be as futile as the tower of Babel was in the days shortly after Noah’s flood. Since he’s opposed to the one true God, the man of lawlessness is “doomed to destruction,” and Jesus will overthrow him, “with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming” (2 Thess. 2:8).


I’m inclined to believe several current events are Satan’s preparations for the soon-to-surface man of lawlessness.


(1) The breakdown of law and order. “That day will not come until the rebellion occurs, and the man of lawlessness is revealed” (2 Thess. 2:3). Who would ever believe that a handful of anarchists could occupy six blocks of a major American city, including a police station, and the police vacate the premises and allow the subversives to take over? Or that city councils would seriously entertain defunding the police? There’s a widespread disrespect for civil authority.


(2) The inversion of truth and falsehood. “God sends them a powerful delusion so they will believe the lie” (2 Thess. 2:11). The Bible warns, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil.” Church gatherings are dangerous and unimportant; massive protests are exempt and essential. Immoral behavior is celebrated; Biblical commands are derided. The racism of Margaret Sanger, founder of Planned Parenthood, is ignored, while Christopher Columbus is trashed because of his racist beliefs. What inconsistency! Satan is the father of lies and the master of deceit. “So all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness” (2 Thess. 2:12).


(3) The elimination of nationalism. According to Acts 17:26-27, God established national boundaries for our good and our protection. Yet, for globalism to succeed, nationalistic pride must be eliminated. There seems to be a concerted effort to destroy America’s spiritual heritage, tear down heroes, and denigrate anyone who is patriotic. Revolutionaries are poised to welcome a new, more equitable system than the one offered in the land of the free and the home of the brave.


(4) The final prerequisite to a one-world government is the rapture of the church. “And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time” (2 Thess. 2:6). Jesus predicted in the last days, “many will depart from the faith” and “because of the increase of wickedness the love of most will grow cold.” Paul warned the time would come when preachers will not put up with sound doctrine but will just say what itching ears want to hear.


Early efforts at re-gathering the church following the pandemic shutdown have not been encouraging. It’s estimated an average of only 33% have returned to worship. In the last days, the church will be so weakened by compromise that most members won’t be able to distinguish between God’s truth and Satan’s lies. They will endorse Satan’s irreligious agenda and get sucked into the lie that humans can save themselves through international cooperation and social engineering.


In the end, the small remnant of believers who would offer strong resistance to the antichrist will be abruptly raptured by Christ and taken out of the world. “For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work, but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so until he is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed” (2 Thess. 2:7-8). When the Holy Spirit, living in the hearts of believers, is taken out of the world, the strongest resistance to Satan’s scheme will be removed, and the way paved for him take control.


But the good news is, “The Lord Jesus will overthrow (him) with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming.” After a brief and bloody reign, the antichrist is doomed to destruction, along with those who have worshipped the beast. Then every knee will bow to Jesus Christ as Lord. And “He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore” (Isaiah 2:4).


“Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming” (2 Peter 3:11-12).

 

“So then, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold fast to the teachings we passed on to you…” (2 Thess. 2:15).


END of Bob Russell’s blog

My sermon yesterday (“Right and Wrong”) and my planned sermon for this Sunday, (“No Hope”) June 28, both focus on the same thing that Bob Russell wrote about in his blog. Coincidence? Can you see?


But you aren’t in the dark about these things, dear brothers and sisters, and you won’t be surprised when the day of the Lord comes like a thief.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

a father's day legacy

monday, June 15, 2020

King David is the most revered king in the history of Israel. In fact, God declared David to be a man after His own heart. King David had a heart that closely represented the heart of God. Take a moment and think about that statement of God.


Acts 13:22 (NLT)

22 But God removed Saul and replaced him with David, a man about whom God said, ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart. He will do everything I want him to do.’


“A man after”...a man that lived in the pursuit of God’s heart. God saw in David a heart that leaned fully toward obedience. David did not rebel against the instructions of God as his predecessor Saul did. David was not a perfect man, but his heart was fully devoted to God for most of his life. David was a king, a man and a father...whose heart was fully devoted to seeking the will of God.


David had many children, specifically many sons. One of David’s sons was destined to replace him as the King of Israel. God had revealed to David that his successor would be his son Solomon.


1 Chronicles 28:5 (NLT)

5 And from among my sons—for the LORD has given me many—he chose Solomon to succeed me on the throne of Israel and to rule over the LORD’s kingdom.


This decision and announcement of Solomon replacing David as king came very late in David’s life...near his death. What instruction do you think King David would give to his son as David prepares to meet the Lord and Solomon prepares to take the throne? What can we learn today from a man after God’s own heart...as he gives his final instructions to his son Solomon?


I pray that all the fathers and grandfathers of the church would read and reflect on these 9 instructions that King David gave his son Solomon before he died.


1 Chronicles 28:8-10 (NLT)

8 “So now, with God as our witness, and in the sight of all Israel—the LORD’s assembly—I give you this charge. Be careful to obey all the commands of the LORD your God, so that you may continue to possess this good land and leave it to your children as a permanent inheritance.

9 “And Solomon, my son, learn to know the God of your ancestors intimately. Worship and serve him with your whole heart and a willing mind. For the LORD sees every heart and knows every plan and thought. If you seek him, you will find him. But if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.

10 So take this seriously. The LORD has chosen you to build a Temple as his sanctuary. Be strong, and do the work.”


1. Be careful to obey all the commands of the Lord your God.

2. This careful obedience to God’s Word will insure the legacy of your children and your grandchildren (a permanent inheritance before God).

3. Learn to know the God of your ancestors (Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) intimately.

4. Worship and serve your God with your whole heart and a willing mind.

5. Worship God...knowing that God sees every heart and knows every plan and thought.

6. Seek the Lord with all your heart and you will find Him.

7. But if you forsake Him, He will reject you forever.

8. Take this seriously!

9. Be strong and do the work that the Lord has assigned to you.


These are 9 specific instructions from King David, a man of God, to his son before he died. God had called Solomon to build the Jerusalem Temple and David’s final challenge (#9) to his son was to be strong and complete all the work that God has assigned to you. Be strong and do the work!


These 9 messages of truth are eternal, and we should be living and teaching them to our children today. Be strong and do the work!


Jesus is referred to as the son of David, though He follows David by some 1000 years. It was prophesied that the Messiah would come from the seed/lineage of King David. The Gospel of Matthew begins with this revelation of God.


Matthew 1:1 (NIV)

1 A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham:


Jesus, the son of David, also had a very serious Father/Son conversation before he died. In that conversation (prayer), Jesus revealed what it is to live perfectly after (in the pursuit of) God’s own heart. I want you to compare Jesus’ prayer to His Father before he dies to David’s instructions to his son Solomon before he dies...as you reflect on the legacy of your own family today. Can you see the connection? I’ll give you a hint...Be strong and do the work!


John 17:1-5 (NLT)

1 After saying all these things, Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son so he can give glory back to you.

2 For you have given him authority over everyone. He gives eternal life to each one you have given him.

3 And this is the way to have eternal life—to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the one you sent to earth.

4 I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you gave me to do.

5 Now, Father, bring me into the glory we shared before the world began.


King David brought glory to God by completing the work of God while pursuing the very heart of God. King David then shared this treasure with his son. Be strong and do the work! 


King Jesus brought glory to His Father by completing the work of the Father...THE CROSS! Be strong and do the work! 


And what is this work of God? To seek after the heart of God! To live a life that, above everything else, seeks God’s Will and God’s Way! Be strong and do the work!


May this be our legacy as we, like our Lord Jesus, seek after the Father’s good, perfect and pleasing will in our lives. May we be strong and complete the work!


9 specific instructions from a father to his son...may these 9 instructions of King David be our legacy today...they found these men to be men after God’s own heart! Be strong and complete the work!


Jeremiah 29:12-13 (NIV)

12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.

13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

 

a word from terry about

the great harvest

monday, june 8, 2020

I’ve talked the last two Sunday’s about Spiritual Farming and the coming Harvest (Advanced Farming). We live in a time when people are anxious about many things. The pandemic, the lawlessness and rioting in the streets of some American cities have left many people feeling confused and helpless. What’s coming next?


This may also be the time for an incredible harvest for the Lord. Many are looking for answers today and they can’t find those answers in government or self. Confused and helpless crowds of people...they are like sheep without a shepherd. Great crowds of people looking for someone to lead them to some form of justice and peace. Jesus connects these times of uncertainty to a great time of harvest.


Matthew 9:36-38 (NLT)

36 When he [Jesus] saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.”


Jesus saw the confused and helpless crowds then and He sees the confused and helpless crowds today. Jesus connects these “confused and helpless crowds” to the time of a “great harvest”. They are looking for someone to lead them out of their helpless confusion. This is the spiritual battle that rages in the heavenly realms. This confusion and helplessness is NOT about flesh and blood, brother and sister...it is an evil force that must be identified.


Ephesians 6:12 (NLT)

12 For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.


Evil spirits in heavenly places...there is a spirit of lawlessness that finds its origin in the heavenly realms...the spirit of Satan. This evil spirit tells the confused and helpless crowds that you can govern yourself without any outside authority. This evil spirit tells the confused and helpless crowds that you can be your own god, create your own authority and define your own truth. The fruit of this evil spirit is called “lawlessness”. This evil spirit wants to lead the crowd away from any form of absolute truth or authority. Will this spirit, this message set the confused and helpless crowd free, truly free? 


1 John 3:4-8 (NIV)

4 Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. 5 But you know that he [Jesus] appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. 6 No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him. 7 Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. He who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous.

8 He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil's work.


There are two spirits that operate in the heavenly realms. The spirit of lawlessness and the Spirit of Christ. The unholy spirit and the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of Truth and the spirit of deception. Everyone operates under the authority and leadership of one of these two spirits...yes everyone! In the end, at the harvest, only the Spirit of Christ will remain! 


1 John 4:4-6 (NLT)

4 But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.

5 Those people belong to this world, so they speak from the world’s viewpoint, and the world listens to them. 6 But we belong to God, and those who know God listen to us. If they do not belong to God, they do not listen to us. That is how we know if someone has the Spirit of truth or the spirit of deception.


The Spirit of Truth is Jesus Christ our Lord. He is the One who has compassion on the confused and helpless crowd. Jesus declares a great harvest over the confused and helpless crowd. So, what is needed for this great harvest that Jesus refers to?


Workers in the fields! Jesus tells us to pray for workers who will accept the calling and responsibility to help the confused and helpless sheep find the truth about the Good Shepherd.


But how, how do we communicate this message of truth with the confused and helpless crowd. We allow the Spirit of Truth to lead us. We never forget that the Lord is in charge of the harvest, not us!


“The harvest is great, but the workers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.”


Today, I ask you to join me in praying for more workers to take their proper place in the fields that are ripe and ready for the great harvest of our Lord. We enter this field under the absolute authority and power of Jesus, the Lord of the harvest.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

stopping the plague

monday, June 1, 2020

Psalms 106 talks about a plague...how it started and how it ended. It started with sin and it ended with righteousness. The plague began when people did that which was wrong in the eyes of God and the plague ended when one person stood up and did what was right in the eyes of God. This story might shock you today. Psalm 106 reveals a Jewish priest named Phinehas, regarded by God as a righteous and holy man for one reason. Phinehas was zealous for God...His Name and His Word.


Psalm 106:28-31 (NLT)

28 Then our ancestors joined in the worship of Baal at Peor; they even ate sacrifices offered to the dead! 29 They angered the LORD with all these things, so a plague broke out among them.

30 But Phinehas had the courage to intervene, and the plague was stopped.

31 So he has been regarded as a righteous man ever since that time.


This particular plague happened in the time of Moses. The plague began when Israel rebelled against the laws and Word of God by having sexual relations with the godless Moabite women. Sexual immorality with the Moabite women led to idolatry and Israel’s idolatry led to the wrath and judgment of God.


Numbers 25:1-3 (NLT)

1 While the Israelites were camped at Acacia Grove, some of the men defiled themselves by having sexual relations with local Moabite women.

2 These women invited them to attend sacrifices to their gods, so the Israelites feasted with them and worshiped the gods of Moab.

3 In this way, Israel joined in the worship of Baal of Peor, causing the LORD’s anger to blaze against his people.


Sin brings death and judgment. Is this shocking to you? Sin has always brought death and sin is to reject and rebel against the Word of God. Israel sinned against God...bringing God’s wrath and judgment...a plague of death broke out among the people of Israel.


Numbers 25:4-5 (NLT)

4 The LORD issued the following command to Moses: “Seize all the ringleaders and execute them before the LORD in broad daylight, so his fierce anger will turn away from the people of Israel.” 5 So Moses ordered Israel’s judges, “Each of you must put to death the men under your authority who have joined in worshiping Baal of Peor.”


In the middle of the plague, the grandson of Aaron (Moses’ brother), the priest stands with God. Death is everywhere and the people are weeping at the tabernacle. Sin and the plague are running through the camp. Does this scene shock you?


Numbers 25:6-9 (NLT)

6 Just then one of the Israelite men brought a Midianite woman into his tent, right before the eyes of Moses and all the people, as everyone was weeping at the entrance of the Tabernacle.

7 When Phinehas son of Eleazar and grandson of Aaron the priest saw this, he jumped up and left the assembly. He took a spear

8 and rushed after the man into his tent. Phinehas thrust the spear all the way through the man’s body and into the woman’s stomach. So the plague against the Israelites was stopped,

9 but not before 24,000 people had died.


It was not the spear of Phinehas that stopped the plague. Phinehas was zealous for the Word of God. Phinehas realized that which many still refuse to accept as truth today...sin is the plague of death. God regarded Phinehas as righteous...he did what was right in the eyes of God and the plague stopped.


Numbers 25:10-13 (NLT)

10 Then the LORD said to Moses,

11 “Phinehas son of Eleazar and grandson of Aaron the priest has turned my anger away from the Israelites by being as zealous among them as I was. So I stopped destroying all Israel as I had intended to do in my zealous anger.

12 Now tell him that I am making my special covenant of peace with him.

13 In this covenant, I give him and his descendants a permanent right to the priesthood, for in his zeal for me, his God, he purified the people of Israel, making them right with me.”


Does this Old Testament scene shock you? Does death shock you? Sin is the plague of death. Phinehas’ actions brought a covenant of peace with God. What can this Old Testament story reveal to us today as we live in the time of a worldwide plague (pandemic)?


God has made a way for the plague of death to be ended...permanently. But we must do it His way! Jesus is His way, the only way to deal with the plague of death. Yes, there will be a sword, but not the sword/spear of Phinehas. The sword that will stop today’s plague is to once again have zeal for the Word of God. The righteous still carry this sword!


Ephesians 6:16-17 (NLT)

16 In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.

17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.


We can estimate that Psalm 106 was written some 500 years after the time of Moses and Phinehas. Zeal for the Lord and His Word does not diminish over time. Doing what is right in the eyes of God does not change with time. Psalm 106 reveals that God’s view of righteousness doesn’t change with time either.


Psalm 106:30-31 (NLT)

30 But Phinehas had the courage to intervene, and the plague was stopped.

31 So he has been regarded as a righteous man ever since that time.


Are you zealous for God...His Name and His Word? There is a covenant of peace, through Jesus Christ our Lord that stops the plague of death. May our Lord find this same zeal in us today...and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the robbery

tuesday, May 26, 2020

I feel like I’ve been robbed! There was a secret enemy that robbed me and the church of our annual Resurrection Sunday (Easter Sunday) celebration. We had been planning to have 3 services and some 1500 people join us that Easter weekend to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection from the grave. But our worship center sat empty that weekend. There were no joyful worshippers singing and celebrating onsite that day. We were robbed! Something of great value was stolen from us.


Something precious was taken from us and the crazy thing is...we actually agreed to have it taken away. I’m not accusing anyone specifically. I told you it was a secret enemy. And we bear some responsibility as well. We were told that millions of people were going to die from this Coronavirus. We were told that if we didn’t act immediately and decisively our communities were going to filled with corpses, like the Bubonic plague that wiped about half of the European population centuries ago.


We based our decision to stop onsite services on the information we had at the time and that information seemed dire and urgent. We decided to go along with the prevailing wisdom of that day and close our onsite worship services, which eventually robbed us of Easter...8 weekend services in all. I feel like I’ve been robbed. Why?


None of those bubonic plague type predictions have come true. Don’t get me wrong. This Covid-19 Coronavirus is deadly serious, but it has not turned out to be what we were told in the beginning...when we agreed to go along. The Center for Disease Control reports 97,669 deaths in the United States from this Coronavirus. 391 of those deaths were in Kentucky and “one” from Anderson County. I don’t treat any of these deaths lightly. They were all important people/souls in the eyes of God. But I still feel like I’ve been robbed. Why?


According to the CDC, 2.5 million people die in the United States every year from various causes. About 32,000 of those deaths are from car crashes (90 auto related deaths per day avg). Should we shut down the automotive industry and lock people out of their cars? Life is a dangerous business and yes, people die every day. The big question is what happens to those people after they die. Is anyone thinking about that? Is anyone talking about what happens the day after you die? What about the human soul? Why close the one place that reveals the truth about that eternal question? That’s the real reason that I feel like I’ve been robbed, and many are still being robbed.


We cancelled our onsite Easter services...think about that for a moment. Easter is the celebration of our victory over death...the resurrection from the grave. Easter celebrates God’s vaccine that cures death--Jesus Christ our Lord. Why would we silence the message that gives hope, yes, even to people who are dying? And by the way, we are all dying!


John 11:25-26 (NIV)

25 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; 26 and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?"


I feel like I’ve been robbed! I went along for a while, but it didn’t take long before I could see the secret enemy for who he really is. The same government that deemed the church a non-essential service (cancelling our onsite services) was opening up an abortion clinic in Louisville to kill babies inside their mother’s womb. That’s when my eyes began to open up to see the secret enemy. It wasn’t the Coronavirus after all. Jesus tells us about this secret enemy.


John 10:6-10 (NLT)

6 Those who heard Jesus use this illustration didn’t understand what he meant,

7 so he explained it to them: “I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep.

8 All who came before me were thieves and robbers. But the true sheep did not listen to them. 9 Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. 10 The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.


Do you see the secret enemy? Jesus calls him a thief and a robber. “The thief’s purpose is to steal, kill and destroy”. The annual abortion rate in Kentucky is somewhere around 4,000 babies/year (detailed data is very difficult to get). Compare that number to Kentucky’s current Coronavirus deaths at 391. I wonder if our governor would be willing to release the daily abortion deaths alongside the state’s Coronavirus deaths each day in his briefings. I feel like we’re being robbed! “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy.”


We missed Easter! We were robbed! Yes, we celebrated Jesus’ resurrection individually, online and with our families, but our chance to do it publicly was stolen from us by a secret enemy. That secret enemy is not the Coronavirus! That enemy is Satan himself. Now the government is telling churches when we can open and how many people can sit in our buildings. What’s next?


The public celebration of Easter was stolen and yes, we went along with it. We based our decision on the best information we had at the time. But now, we have more information. Do you know what next Sunday, May 31, is? Pentecost...the day the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ, came and the church began. We will not participate in the robbery anymore.


This Sunday, Pentecost Sunday, the Ninevah Christian Church will celebrate publicly and onsite. Yes, we are careful, and we do not deny the seriousness of this Coronavirus, but we are not afraid. Why? Because we know the truth about the liar. We know the secret enemy’s name and his methods. We know that Jesus has defeated Satan on Calvary’s cross and the gates of hell will not prevail against the true church of Jesus Christ. We know the church was born, as the body of Christ, on Pentecost and the church is the current light of the world...holding back the darkness of the thieving liar. And yes, this LIGHT IS ESSENTIAL FOR LIFE!


Matthew 5:14-16 (NLT)

14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.

15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.

16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about a "serious error"

tuesday, may 19, 2020

The discussion was about the resurrection of the dead. Jesus was being confronted by a group of Jewish Sadducees regarding the resurrection, which they didn’t believe in. This is important. Jesus was being questioned about the resurrection by a group of religious people that had already decided that they didn’t believe in any resurrection of the dead, even though they supposedly believed in the Scriptures. So, were they really looking for the truth?


The resurrection discussion ended up with a question about a woman who had died having 7 different husbands. They asked Jesus, in the resurrection whose wife will she be (since she had been married to 7 different men)? Remember, this question is being asked by a group of religious people that had already determined through their interpretation of the Scriptures that there was no resurrection of the dead, no afterlife at all.


Jesus’ answer is remarkable, and His answer speaks loudly about a “Serious Error” that many are still experiencing today as well:


Mark 12:24-25 (NLT)

24 Jesus replied, “Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God.

25 For when the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage. In this respect they will be like the angels in heaven.


Remember, these are Jewish scholars, religious leaders and Jesus is going to identify their “Serious Error”. These two points of Jesus describe a very “Serious Error” that is common unto mankind. These Sadducees stood in front of the Son of God, God in human flesh, and two “Serious Errors” are revealed that kept them from seeing the Truth that was directly in front of them at the time.


#1: You don’t know or understand the Scriptures.

#2: You don’t know or understand the power of God


These men weren’t looking for the truth. They didn’t know the truth because they didn’t truly know and understand the Scriptures. It is through the Scriptures that God reveals His resurrection power. Maybe they were trying to determine their own truth and then convince Jesus that they were right. This was their “Serious Error”. This is a “Serious Error” today as well.


Those men knew the Old Testament Scriptures, or at least they thought they did. But they didn’t know the One that the Scriptures revealed. Many people today know the Bible, but they don’t know the One that the Bible reveals. Jesus reveals this “Serious Error” again in the Gospel of John.


John 5:39-40 (NLT)

39 “You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me! 40 Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life.


Do you see the “Serious Error”? These Sadducees has spent their lives studying the Scriptures but couldn’t see the One that all the Scriptures were revealing. Bible stories can’t save us. Knowing Bible history won’t save us. Those stories and that history are there to reveal the One that came with the power to save us by experiencing a physical death on the cross and the physical resurrection from the dead. Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life. This is a very “Serious Error”.


Jesus then reveals the powerful truth about the resurrection to these unbelieving Sadducees...a powerful truth that many people still struggle with today.


Mark 12:26-27 (NLT)

26 “But now, as to whether the dead will be raised—haven’t you ever read about this in the writings of Moses, in the story of the burning bush? Long after Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob had died, God said to Moses, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’

27 So he is the God of the living, not the dead. You have made a “Serious Error”.


Our God is not the God of the dead, although many are indeed dead. In fact, that is the very reason why they are dead, because they have rejected the truth about the God that is life itself. Our God is the God of the living because He is the source of life itself and those who are connected to God the Father through Jesus Christ the Son have His eternal life inside of them. To believe anything else is a “Serious Error”.


Let me ask each of you a crazy, but important question today. Are you afraid to die? If you truly believe in the resurrection of the dead, why would you be afraid to die? This too would be a “Serious Error”.


The Book of Revelation reveals three things given to the believers to exercise power over Satan and eternal death (eternal death is the absence of the resurrection power of Christ). Three things!


Revelation 12:11 (NLT)

11 And they have defeated him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and by their testimony. And they did not love their lives so much that they were afraid to die.


#1: The Blood of the Lamb is the proof of the Resurrection power of Christ (He died and was raised)

#2: The Testimony is our proclamation of faith in the power of Christ to save us...confessed publicly from our mouth and heart. Romans 10:9-10 If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.

#3: No fear of death...Because they believed in the resurrection power of Jesus...they weren’t afraid to die.


The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the God of the living. The Father of Jesus Christ is the God of the living. God the Father has given all power, dominion, and authority over to His Son-Jesus. Jesus is the God of the living because those who have been born again by the power of His name will never die. They have already died with Christ and they have already experienced the born-again resurrection of Christ. This is the resurrection!


Romans 6:5 (NLT)

5 Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was.

Anything less than this is a “Serious Error”.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about fast food

tuesday, May 12, 2020

Most of us know that too much fast food is unhealthy for the human body. Fast food is popular because it’s cheap and fits our fast, hurry-up lifestyle. We can eat it quick and it satisfies our temporary hunger...so we can move on to the next thing. Never considering the fact that too much fast food in our diet will actually shorten our life and rob us of our physical health.


But, what about “Spiritual Fast Food”? Give me something cheap and quick. Give me something that doesn’t take much time...something to satisfy my spiritual hunger so I can move onto the next thing! Can this be healthy?


I was reading from Mark chapter 8 yesterday and I saw something I had not noticed before. That chapter reveals a time when people from everywhere had gone out into the wilderness to hear Jesus speak. Some had come from great distances, to see, hear and experience Jesus personally. But that’s not what caught my eye yesterday. “Three days” caught my eye and that number shook me. Three days in the wilderness to see, hear and experience Jesus.


Mark 8:1-3 (NLT)

1 About this time another large crowd had gathered, and the people ran out of food again. Jesus called his disciples and told them,

2 “I feel sorry for these people. They have been here with me for three days, and they have nothing left to eat.

3 If I send them home hungry, they will faint along the way. For some of them have come a long distance.”


Three days in the wilderness in search for a spiritual food that would satisfy the human soul. This is not cheap fast food. This is the eternal Bread of Life. Three days in the wilderness seeking something to satisfy their spiritual hunger so they can find the meaning and purpose of life itself. Three days! This Bread of Life wasn’t cheap! It cost them three days! It required their investment of time. It wasn’t fast food.


There is a reason that “three days” shook me. Would the people in America go out into the wilderness for three days to see, hear and experience Jesus personally? Would the majority of the modern American Church give three days to see hear and experience Jesus personally? NO! We want cheap fast spiritual food today. Hey Preacher, give me a 20-minute cheap, fast spiritual meal that will satisfy our spiritual hunger so we can move onto the next thing because we’re very busy. We don’t have much time for this spiritual food that you want to go on and on about. We need to eat something quick and move on.


Move onto what? What is out there in front of all of us? Move onto what? What are we in such a hurry to get to? Jesus is not cheap, and Jesus is not fast food. The miracle in March chapter 8 was the result of a three-day investment of time. Time is not cheap, and we all have a limited amount of time. It’s undeniable, we are all running out of time. He is the only Bread of Life. He is the Creator of time and without Him we are all going to die of spiritual hunger...while running out of time.


Most people will read this story from Mark chapter 8 and focus on the miraculous feeding of the 4000 with 7 loaves of bread and a few small fish. Don’t get me wrong, this is a wonderful revelation of God’s supernatural power to provide for our physical hunger. Jesus had compassion on these “three-day people”, and He met their need for physical food.


Three days in the wilderness. Time is not cheap, it’s very expensive. 4000 people invested “three days” to search for the Bread of Life and guess what? They had 7 baskets of leftovers!


Isaiah 55:2-3 (NLT)

2 Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength? Why pay for food that does you no good? Listen to me, and you will eat what is good. You will enjoy the finest food.

3 “Come to me with your ears wide open. Listen, and you will find life. I will make an everlasting covenant with you. I will give you all the unfailing love I promised to David.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about american idols

Tuesday, may 5, 2020

The biblical story of Moses and the golden calf are what many people think of when you use the word “idolatry”. People think about some kind of a graven or formed image or a stature that people bow down to. Yes, God forbids his people to bow down to any image or statue. Idolatry is specifically called out in the first and second of the Ten Commandments.


Exodus 20:2-5 (NLT)

2 “I am the LORD your God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt, the place of your slavery.

3 “You must not have any other god but me.

4 “You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea.

5 You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods.


No other god but me...what does that mean today? What would an American Idol look like today? Idols can take many forms but ultimately all idols take the rightful place of God in the human heart. People begin to depend upon and trust in other things, substitutes, and those other things become idols. Maybe you don’t bend your knee to this idol, but you put your trust in it to keep you safe, secure and protected from danger. Is it possible to have an idol and not know it? It is possible to create a substitute for God and not realize it?


Let me give you a specific example today. I was watching the television this past weekend and I saw this 60 second Pfizer commercial https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xl0tEfLve1U.  Pfizer is one of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies and they are headquartered in New York. The Pfizer commercial begins with these words: 


“At a time when things are most uncertain, we turn to the most certain thing there is...Science! Science can overcome diseases, create cures and yes beat pandemics. It has before, it will again.”


The video then has multiple people holding up signs that say, “Science Wins”. The video closes with this statement... “When science wins, we all win”.


Let me begin by saying that I have nothing against Pfizer or any other pharmaceutical company. I’m sure there are a lot of great people working there. And yes, I hope they come up with a cure to this Coronavirus and any other disease that plagues this current world we live in. I am hopeful that modern science can overcome this current pandemic, BUT science cannot take the place of God. That would be idolatry. We must put our trust in God and in Him alone. Anything else is called idolatry. Yes, God uses medicine to heal and cure diseases, but we must never take our eyes off the real power and the real authority that belongs to God alone.


The Bible warns us of a time when people will be tempted to worship “created things” rather than the “Creator”. This is idolatry and this will lead to our great peril.


Romans 1:25 (NLT)

25 They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.


We cannot trade the truth of God for a lie. God alone can save us. Science will never be able to cure human death and death is our ultimate enemy. There is only One that has overcome death and He didn’t do it with science. He did it with the greatest display of love this world has ever known...the sacrificial death of His Son-Jesus.


In last week’s letter, I told you that God specifically connected the fall of ancient Judah and the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple to “Idolatry and the shedding of innocent blood”. We dare not ignore God’s warning in this current time of pandemic.


We need to turn our hearts to the truth of God’s Word and remove the substitutes from our lives because only God can save us from death. God has shown us a way to be saved. Idolatry only takes us farther and farther from God’s salvation. God has shown us the way.


1 John 1:8-10 (NLT)

8 If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth.

9 But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts.


I close today by respectfully rewording the Pfizer commercial’s opening statement into a statement of truth.


At a time when things are most uncertain, we turn to the most certain thing there is...GOD!


Romans 10:9-10 (NLT)

9 If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen.


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

innocent blood

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

I just finished a personal study of the Old Testament books of Jeremiah and Lamentations. I’ll admit it’s a pretty sobering study to undertake during a pandemic. The prophet Jeremiah is the writer of both books and Lamentations is the book that describes the horror and weeping as they watch the Nation of Judah fall and the Jerusalem Temple lies in ruins. The first two verses of Lamentations set the stage for the rest of the book...


Lamentations 1:1-2 (NLT)

1 Jerusalem, once so full of people, is now deserted. She who was once great among the nations now sits alone like a widow. Once the queen of all the earth, she is now a slave.

2 She sobs through the night; tears stream down her cheeks. Among all her lovers, there is no one left to comfort her. All her friends have betrayed her and become her enemies.


All is lost! It looks like all hope is gone! The super-powerful nation of Judah has been conquered and the Temple of the Living God has been totally destroyed. Lamenting is all that remains. Weeping over what has been lost. The siege was long, and the fear of the coming enemy and God’s judgment was overwhelming. These scenes are hard for me to imagine, but they are historical facts. Parents so overwhelmed with fear and hopelessness that they abandon their own children or even worse...they consumed them to stay alive during the siege. Can you imagine this horror?


Jeremiah 47:3 (NLT)

3 Hear the clatter of stallions’ hooves and the rumble of wheels as the chariots rush by. Terrified fathers run madly, without a backward glance at their helpless children.


Lamentations 4:9-10 (NLT)

9 Those killed by the sword are better off than those who die of hunger. Starving, they waste away for lack of food from the fields. 10 Tenderhearted women have cooked their own children. They have eaten them to survive the siege.


But why...why did God bring this horrible judgment upon His people. Why would God allow the Jerusalem Temple to be destroyed by foreigners? Why? Do you know the answer to this horrible question? Does the answer to this horrible question have any application in our current pandemic? Why would God allow such horror to come to this people that had once called upon His Name?


Idolatry and the shedding of innocent blood! Two things that God would no longer tolerate. Two things that brought a horrifying end to the people of Judah and Jerusalem. God’s righteous judgment finally came. After all the warnings...their day of judgment came. God’s righteousness was finally satisfied. His judgment came full strength, and this is how Jeremiah describes the end.


Lamentations 4:11-13 (NLT)

11 But now the anger of the LORD is satisfied. His fierce anger has been poured out. He started a fire in Jerusalem that burned the city to its foundations.

12 Not a king in all the earth— no one in all the world— would have believed that an enemy could march through the gates of Jerusalem.

13 Yet it happened because of the sins of her prophets and the sins of her priests, who defiled the city by shedding innocent blood.


Now, I must admit that verse 13 hit me like ton of bricks. The sins of the prophets and the sins of the priests brought this judgment upon the people and the nation. The religious leaders of Judah had lost their way. They refused to publicly deal with the sins of idolatry and the shedding of innocent blood.


God had established these prophets and priests to be the ambassadors of truth...there is only One God that can save. But they had sold the truth of God for a lie. They became people pleasers and they went along with the self-centered idolatrous culture instead of standing on the truth of God’s Word. Sound familiar?


I recently watched with horror as Kentucky’s governor opened abortion clinics during this pandemic as if they were essential services? Essential services? Essential for what? Our governor then refuses to sign a bill that would require life saving treatment for a baby born-alive from a failed abortion. His explanation was he didn’t want to be divisive during this pandemic. Divisive to whom? God told Cain that his brothers blood cried out from the ground. God is not absent when innocent blood is shed. He is watching!


Genesis 4:10 (NLT)

10 But the LORD said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground!


God will not be mocked. Idolatry and the shedding of innocent blood are an offense to God and these sins can bring down a nation. Yes, even a powerful nation. My mind cannot comprehend this total disregard for human life called abortion, especially while the world wages a war against this enemy virus.


Not a king in all the earth--no one in all the world— would have believed that an enemy could march through the gates of Jerusalem. But Jerusalem fell and judgment came, and you don’t even have to guess why. The prophets and the priests failed the people by becoming people pleasers instead of God’s messengers of truth.


I don’t want to see this Bible history repeated in our time and I certainly don’t want to be the cowardly prophets/priests through which the destruction comes. So today I call out this sin against God for what it truly is. God will not continue to bless a people that abandon him for idols and cheap substitutes. These man-made powers (idolatry) cannot save us from this plague, the grave or God’s final judgment. God will not continue to bless a people who shed the innocent blood of children at the altar of convenience and political correctness. Judgment day always comes. Eventually it comes. Either through the grave or the last trumpet, judgment day always comes.


2 Corinthians 5:10 (NLT)

10 For we must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the fear of surrender

Monday, April 20, 2020

Do you like to lose? I don’t! Does the idea of “surrender” sound like winning or losing to you? Let’s face it, surrender sounds like losing. Giving up sounds like defeat. Sometimes surrender is losing in order to win. The Japanese surrendered to the United States at the end of WW2. But that was a good thing, right? The nation of Japan is now our ally and their surrender avoided their national destruction by the US military. Japan’s surrender led to a win, not a loss.


I suppose the real question is not about “surrender’ but who you are surrendering to. It is entirely possible to surrender and win, but that would depend upon who you surrender to. That brings me to today’s encouraging Word of Truth.


There is an important story of surrender in the Old Testament Book of Jeremiah. Judah and Jerusalem were under God’s judgment and the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar was preparing a military siege of the city of Jerusalem. The king of Judah at that time was King Zedekiah. God sends a message to King Zedekiah through the prophet Jeremiah. God tells King Zedekiah that the only way to win was to surrender. Think about that for a moment. The only way to win is to give up, to surrender.


Jeremiah 38:17-18 (NLT)

17 Then Jeremiah said to Zedekiah, “This is what the LORD God of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: ‘If you surrender to the Babylonian officers, you and your family will live, and the city will not be burned down.

18 But if you refuse to surrender, you will not escape! This city will be handed over to the Babylonians, and they will burn it to the ground.’”


This is good news, right? God has opened a window of opportunity to turn a major loss into a win. Not just for King Zedekiah, but for his entire family and even the city of Jerusalem itself. This is good news, right? This is an easy choice, right? Wrong! King Zedekiah is afraid to surrender. Yes, the king has just received the Word of God through the prophet of God, but still he is afraid to surrender.


Jeremiah 38:19 (NLT)

19 “But I am afraid to surrender,” the king said, “for the Babylonians may hand me over to the Judeans who have defected to them. And who knows what they will do to me!”


King Zedekiah is afraid to surrender the control of his future into the Word of God, the promised deliverance of God. God has promised to protect the king’s life and his family’s life if he will surrender and follow the Word of God. This is a moment of truth for King Zedekiah. Will he believe the Word of God through Jeremiah to be absolute truth? Would he trust his life, his family’s life into the hands of God’s promised Word? Or will this fear of surrender cost the king his life? Jeremiah tries once again to persuade the king into believing God’s promise of deliverance by revealing the terrible alternative to surrendering to God’s offer of mercy.


Jeremiah 38:20-23 (NLT)

20 Jeremiah replied, “You won’t be handed over to them if you choose to obey the LORD. Your life will be spared, and all will go well for you.

21 But if you refuse to surrender, this is what the LORD has revealed to me:

22 All the women left in your palace will be brought out and given to the officers of the Babylonian army. Then the women will taunt you, saying, ‘What fine friends you have! They have betrayed and misled you. When your feet sank in the mud, they left you to your fate!’

23 All your wives and children will be led out to the Babylonians, and you will not escape. You will be seized by the king of Babylon, and this city will be burned down.”


King Zedekiah’s decision was going to affect a lot of people in Judah, not just himself. FEAR is always the enemy of FAITH. Fear makes this win look like a loss. Zedekiah had heard the Word of the Lord, but fear kept the king from believing that Word of Truth. King Zedekiah refused to obey the Word of God and King Zedekiah lost his chance to find life through surrender. The king rejected God’s offer of mercy.


When the Babylonian king finally broke through the walls of Jerusalem, this was Zedekiah’s ending. King Zedekiah tried to run, but you can’t run from the Word of God. This is what happened to the king who refused to surrender to God’s offer of mercy.


Jeremiah 52:8-11 (NLT)

8 But the Babylonian troops chased King Zedekiah and caught him on the plains of Jericho, for his men had all deserted him and scattered.

9 They took him to the king of Babylon at Riblah in the land of Hamath. There the king of Babylon pronounced judgment upon Zedekiah.

10 He made Zedekiah watch as they slaughtered his sons and all the other officials of Judah.

11 Then they gouged out Zedekiah’s eyes, bound him in bronze chains, and led him away to Babylon. Zedekiah remained there in prison until the day of his death.


There was a time when Zedekiah’s horrible ending could have been changed. This loss could have been changed to a win. Judgment could have been overcome by mercy. That moment was called surrender. Humble yourself, give up and surrender. Surrender to the Word of God and find life. Does that sound familiar or relevant for us today? Humble yourself, give up and surrender. The only way to win is to give up, to surrender. Has God given us a similar offer through Jesus Christ today?


Luke 9:24 (NLT)

If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.


Today, we live in an uncertain world. This pandemic is causing many to reevaluate their lives and their future. We don’t know what’s coming next or how all this is going to turn out in our generation. In the middle of this pandemic chaos there is still a voice of Truth. The only way to win is to humble yourself, give up and surrender. Surrender is the only way to turn this great loss into a great win.


Fear is still the enemy of faith. Are you afraid to give the control of your life over to Jesus Christ, through faith in His name? When we put our faith in Jesus, we are trusting our lives, forever into His hands. King Zedekiah didn’t want to die a horrible death, but his fear and rejection of God’s merciful offer of deliverance brought that horrible death upon himself.


This offer of God to surrender and live is an urgent offer for urgent times. Zedekiah’s fear closed his window of opportunity. You must accept this merciful offer of God by faith, when it is offered because there is no guarantee that this offer of mercy will be available tomorrow.


2 Corinthians 6:1-2 (NLT)

1 As God’s partners, we beg you not to accept this marvelous gift of God’s kindness and then ignore it.

2 For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation.


I encourage all of you today to cast off your fears and anxieties and hold onto the precious promises of God. Call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. He will deliver us. Jesus is our Deliverer and He always keeps His promises. His great love and power will never fail us.


1 Peter 5:6-7 (NLT)

6 So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. 7 Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about being overwhelmed

Tuesday, april 14, 2020

Most of you are aware of the Old Testament Prophet Jeremiah. Jeremiah was God’s prophet during the time of Jerusalem’s fall in 586 BC. Jeremiah was the one through which God delivered “mostly bad news” to the people of Judah. After all, who wants to hear bad news from God anyway? How would you like to be the man, called by God, to tell the people what they don’t want to hear...that was Jeremiah’s calling! Let me give you an example of those overwhelming Words of God to Jeremiah:


Jeremiah 14:11-12 (NLT)

11 Then the LORD said to me, “Do not pray for these people anymore.

12 When they fast, I will pay no attention. When they present their burnt offerings and grain offerings to me, I will not accept them. Instead, I will devour them with war, famine, and disease.”


How would you like to be the one in charge of delivering that message of God to the people? Can you imagine the overwhelming burden and responsibility of knowing the truth about a dreadful future and having to reveal that truth to the people? That was Jeremiah’s calling. This calling of God didn’t just impact Jeremiah. Jeremiah had a sidekick named Baruch. Baruch is the guy that wrote down much of the information that Jeremiah received from the Lord. In fact, Baruch was the one that had to read Jeremiah’s message (that Baruch had written on a scroll) to the people while Jeremiah was in prison. That leads me to my main point today. Jeremiah chapter 45 reveals a Word of God to Baruch about being overwhelmed with this burden and responsibility before the Lord and before the people.


Jeremiah 45:1-3 (NLT)

1 The prophet Jeremiah gave a message to Baruch son of Neriah in the fourth year of the reign of Jehoiakim son of Josiah, after Baruch had written down everything Jeremiah had dictated to him. He said,

2 “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says to you, Baruch:

3 You have said, ‘I am overwhelmed with trouble! Haven’t I had enough pain already? And now the LORD has added more! I am worn out from sighing and can find no rest.’


Can you see Baruch’s overwhelmed spirit in those verses? God is telling Baruch that HE KNOWS about the overwhelming responsibility that has been placed on him. GOD KNOWS! I think Jeremiah chapter 45 might be the shortest chapter of all the 52 chapters recorded under his name. But I love this wonderful short chapter, especially today.


God knows about the overwhelming burden of standing on the Word of God during a time of crisis. God knows that it is very difficult to be the bearer of bad news, even if that bad news is Truth. God knows the overwhelming responsibility to stand against the people and tell them what they absolutely don’t want to hear or believe to be true. God knows!


But God also knows how the story is going to end. God knows the end from the beginning. Jeremiah and Baruch don’t know the end, but God does. That’s when chapter 45 blesses me. God acknowledges Baruch’s overwhelmed condition and then He does something for Baruch. Read it for yourself:


Jeremiah 45:4-5 (NLT)

4 “Baruch, this is what the LORD says: ‘I will destroy this nation that I built. I will uproot what I planted. 5 Are you seeking great things for yourself? Don’t do it! I will bring great disaster upon all these people; but I will give you your life as a reward wherever you go. I, the LORD, have spoken!’”


That’s it...that’s the whole chapter 45 of Jeremiah. God knows! God knows how overwhelming the responsibility of following Him will be in a fallen world, especially when the end is near. But God also knows about the reward in the end. God knows. God told Baruch the TRUTH and sometimes the TRUTH can be a bit overwhelming. Jerusalem is going to be completely destroyed. That truth was overwhelming. Absolute disaster was coming upon the people of Judah. That truth was overwhelming. And then God asks and answers a question to overwhelmed Baruch...a great question for each of us today, while we are in a pandemic.


Are you seeking great things for yourself? Don’t do it!


Overwhelmed Baruch couldn’t see how any good was going to come from this Word of God that he and Jeremiah were delivering to the people of Judah. Baruch was overwhelmed because he was trying to determine the outcome (Are you seeking great things for yourself? Don’t do it!) himself, rather than trusting the outcome to God. God, in His mercy and faithfulness reveals Baruch’s future to help calm his overwhelmed condition.


I will give you your life as a reward wherever you go. I, the LORD, have spoken!’”


That’s good advice for all of us today. That message of God to overwhelmed Baruch can have a personal application to all of us today.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about forced social distancing

tuesday, april 7, 2020

There’s an interesting story of “forced social distancing” in the Old Testament Book of Jeremiah. Jeremiah was a prophet of God during the time when God was planning to bring judgment upon Judah and the city of Jerusalem. God was sending His messages and warnings to the people through the prophet Jeremiah and then something happened. Something that I call “forced social distancing”, but this wasn’t caused by some virus or plague. This form of social distancing was caused by the refusal to listen to the Word of God, through Jeremiah.


The Lord came to Jeremiah and told him to write on a scroll all the messages that he had received so that the Word of God could be read aloud to the people of Judah. These written on a scroll messages of God had a specific goal from the Lord and the Lord reveals that goal clearly to Jeremiah (notice vs. 3 below).


Jeremiah 36:1-3 (NLT)

1 During the fourth year that Jehoiakim son of Josiah was king in Judah, the LORD gave this message to Jeremiah:

2 “Get a scroll, and write down all my messages against Israel, Judah, and the other nations. Begin with the first message back in the days of Josiah, and write down every message, right up to the present time.

3 Perhaps the people of Judah will repent when they hear again all the terrible things I have planned for them. Then I will be able to forgive their sins and wrongdoings.”


The goal of these written message (past and up to the present) was to bring the people of Judah to repentance so that God could forgive their sins. The Word of warning was given to bring the people to repentance and repentance would bring the forgiveness of God. This was the goal and purpose of having Jeremiah write down the Words of God on a scroll.


Jeremiah obey God’s instruction and called a man named Baruch to write down for Jeremiah all of God’s messages on a scroll.


Jeremiah 36:4 (NLT)

4 So Jeremiah sent for Baruch son of Neriah, and as Jeremiah dictated all the prophecies that the LORD had given him, Baruch wrote them on a scroll.


But Jeremiah has one big problem. Jeremiah was a prisoner and he was unable to go to the temple and read the Word of God to the people there. The people were allowed to assemble at the Temple, but the preacher/prophet wasn’t allowed to come to the people (forced social distancing). God knew that Jeremiah was a prisoner, but God still ordered that the Word be written down, even though the prophet/preacher would not be allowed to personally go to the Temple himself.


Jeremiah 36:5-7 (NLT)

5 Then Jeremiah said to Baruch, “I am a prisoner here and unable to go to the Temple.

6 So you go to the Temple on the next day of fasting, and read the messages from the LORD that I have had you write on this scroll. Read them so the people who are there from all over Judah will hear them.

7 Perhaps even yet they will turn from their evil ways and ask the LORD’s forgiveness before it is too late. For the LORD has threatened them with his terrible anger.”


This biblical version of forced social distancing didn’t stop the Word of God from going out to the people. Baruch went and read the Word of God that had been delivered through the prophet Jeremiah even though Jeremiah was forced to be absent and in jail (forced social distancing).


Baruch followed Jeremiah’s instruction and read the Word of the Lord at the Temple services the following day. The people heard the Word and many of them believed it to be a legitimate warning of God and repented before the Lord. The Word of the Lord traveled quickly to the Jerusalem spiritual leaders and they called for Baruch to come and read it to them personally.


Jeremiah 36:14-18 (NLT)

... So Baruch took the scroll and went to them.

15 “Sit down and read the scroll to us,” the officials said, and Baruch did as they requested.

16 When they heard all the messages, they looked at one another in alarm. “We must tell the king what we have heard,” they said to Baruch.

17 “But first, tell us how you got these messages. Did they come directly from Jeremiah?”

18 So Baruch explained, “Jeremiah dictated them, and I wrote them down in ink, word for word, on this scroll.”


This is good news, right? The Word of the Lord has gone from the common people in the Temple to the leaders and now it’s headed for the King of Judah. This is good news, right? Jeremiah is in forced social distancing and yet the Word of God is still going out to the people, right? What will the King do when he hears the Word of God while Jeremiah is in prison?


They took the scroll, the Word of God through prisoner Jeremiah to King Jehoiakim to be read aloud and this is what happened.


Jeremiah 36:23-25 (NLT)

23 Each time Jehudi finished reading three or four columns, the king took a knife and cut off that section of the scroll. He then threw it into the fire, section by section, until the whole scroll was burned up.

24 Neither the king nor his attendants showed any signs of fear or repentance at what they heard.

25 Even when Elnathan, Delaiah, and Gemariah begged the king not to burn the scroll, he wouldn’t listen.


No sign of fear or repentance. How is it that some believed the Word and repented while others wanted to set it on fire? The Word of God was their last chance to repent and to turn back the judgment of God. The Word was God’s amazing “wait a minute moment in time” in which He would give time to receive the Word of Truth and Repent. Instead, the King set the Word on fire and issued orders to have Baruch and Jeremiah both arrested.


Jeremiah 36:26 (NLT)

26 Then the king commanded his son Jerahmeel, Seraiah son of Azriel, and Shelemiah son of Abdeel to arrest Baruch and Jeremiah. But the LORD had hidden them.


So, how did this story of forced social distancing end? Yes, some people heard the Word of the Lord and repented, and some people refused to listen and believe. What about King Jehoiakim?


First, let me say that God had Jeremiah and Baruch write it all down again...to make a new scroll to replace the one that King Jehoiakim burned. But this time...God gave a new message to Jeremiah that was to be specifically given to the Word burning King Jehoiakim.


Jeremiah 36:28-31 (NLT)

28 “Get another scroll, and write everything again just as you did on the scroll King Jehoiakim burned.

29 Then say to the king, ‘This is what the LORD says: You burned the scroll because it said the king of Babylon would destroy this land and empty it of people and animals.

30 Now this is what the LORD says about King Jehoiakim of Judah: He will have no heirs to sit on the throne of David. His dead body will be thrown out to lie unburied—exposed to the heat of the day and the frost of the night.

31 I will punish him and his family and his attendants for their sins. I will pour out on them and on all the people of Jerusalem and Judah all the disasters I promised, for they would not listen to my warnings.’”


Jeremiah was not able to preach in the Temple because of forced social distancing, but the Word of the Lord could not be bound. The Word went out and fire could not stop it. The Word of God is powerful and unstoppable, and that same Word has called us all to repentance.


2 Peter 3:9 (NLT)

9 The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.


Today, I proclaim a spiritual truth. The Word of God will not be stopped by social distancing, forced or free will. The Word of God is clear and ever present and God has called us all to come to the knowledge of Truth. Jesus’ first messages are still His current message today.


Matthew 4:17 (NLT)

17 From then on Jesus began to preach, “Repent of your sins and turn to God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

 

A word from terry

about enough bread

Tuesday, march 31, 2020

Do you have enough bread? What about milk and eggs? What about that blessed toilet paper? I’ve noticed that people are becoming increasingly concerned about having enough of everything in the midst of this pandemic. Yes, I think we should be prudent and wise planners at this time. Yes, I think we should do a careful evaluation of our upcoming family needs now that the president has extended the social distancing order to the end of April. But how can you be sure that you have enough?


No one in Washington knows what’s going to happen in the next few weeks and months. None of these government or medical officials can tell us with certainty about tomorrow or the next day. So, how can we be sure we have enough?


That brings me to my topic for today. There is One that knows everything about tomorrow. There is One that has already seen tomorrow and has absolute power and authority over time itself. There is One that saw this coming and has prepared “enough bread”. The One I’m referring to is Jesus.


There is a story in the Gospel of Mark that teaches us how to respond to times like this when “enough” is difficult to measure. Jesus has just finished feeding the 5000 and then the 4000 by His supernatural provision when the disciples get into a boat to cross over the lake. It’s at that moment that they realize that they don’t have “enough bread”. That bread shortage causes an argument to break out in the boat. Jesus was listening to His disciples argue about not having enough bread. Remember, they had all witnessed the miraculous and supernatural feeding of over 9000 people and now they’re freaking out about the idea that there’s not enough bread in their boat.


Mark 8:16-20 (NLT)

16 At this they began to argue with each other because they hadn’t brought any bread.

17 Jesus knew what they were saying, so he said, “Why are you arguing about having no bread? Don’t you know or understand even yet? Are your hearts too hard to take it in?

18 ‘You have eyes—can’t you see? You have ears—can’t you hear?’ Don’t you remember anything at all?

19 When I fed the 5,000 with five loaves of bread, how many baskets of leftovers did you pick up afterward?” “Twelve,” they said.

20 “And when I fed the 4,000 with seven loaves, how many large baskets of leftovers did you pick up?” “Seven,” they said. 

Can you see Jesus’ frustration with his friends in this scene? They were worried and arguing about “enough bread” after witnessing more than enough bread. 9000 people had eaten Jesus’ bread and they had 19 baskets of leftovers. Is that not enough to prove that Jesus is enough? What is it going to take to make these people believe that Jesus has more than enough bread? That story ends with this one verse question from Jesus.


Mark 8:21 (NLT)

21 “Don’t you understand yet?” he asked them.


That question from Jesus wasn’t just for His followers in the boat that day. That question is also for us today. Don’t you understand yet? Jesus is more than enough bread. He is the bread of life itself and He is more than enough bread. Don’t you understand yet? Some people are becoming fearful and beginning to panic during this time of trial because you’re afraid you’re not going to have enough bread. Jesus tells us to seek first the Kingdom and His righteousness and He will provide more than enough bread, even including leftovers. Don’t you understand yet?


Matthew 6:31-34 (NLT)

31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’

32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.

33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.


I challenge all of you during this difficult time to “SEEK THE KINGDOM OF GOD ABOVE ALL ELSE”. Put that first, and there will be more than enough bread in your house….forever!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper


a word from terry about

the shocking alternative

Monday, March 23, 2020

It seems like we’re doing everything different these days. So, I decided to do my weekly letter to the church a little different as well.


“Mere Christianity” was one of the first CS Lewis books I ever read, and I absolutely loved it. It opened my eyes to things I had not seen before. I originally read that book around 20 years ago and I can still remember some of those pages today.


I was looking at some YouTube Bible Teaching messages this past week and came across a marvelous 13-minute video to illustrate one of the chapters from “Mere Christianity”. That chapter is called “The Shocking Alternative”.


I want to encourage each of you to set aside 13 minutes inside your current and crazy Coronavirus world to watch this wonderful depiction of one of the chapters from CS Lewis’ wonderful book.


I hope this video gives you encouragement and truth today. It reveals what CS Lewis calls the “Shocking Alternative”.


Click the link below to watch:

The Shocking Alternative by C.S. Lewis Doodle (BBC Talk 8, Mere Christianity, Bk 2, Chapter 3) - YouTube

Notes: This is an illustration of C.S Lewis’ third talk of the third radio series called ‘What Christians Believe’. This became Chapter 3 of Book 2, in the book called ‘Mere Christianity ...

www.youtube.com


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the virus

Thursday, March 19, 2020

We live in unprecedented times. The Spanish flu pandemic was 100 years ago. The Great Depression was some 80 years ago. Most Americans can’t remember those very difficult days. That Great Depression lasted some 10 years and it affected everyone, yes everyone. Now, we are faced a modern-day event that is and will affect everyone of us. Yes, this is unprecedented in our generation, but not unprecedented in human history.


Let’s face it, most of us alive today have never really experienced a national emergency of this scale, much less a worldwide event. But here we are. There is a VIRUS among us. We can’t see it, but we know its there. The VIRUS is spreading, and we are currently practicing social distancing to try to contain the spread. It’s like fighting a deadly monster that we can’t even see, but we believe it to be real. This is causing many to panic and shrink in fear. Yes, it is a fearful thing and we have never experienced anything like this in our generation before.


Fear! This VIRUS makes some people very sick and yes, it even kills some within a relative short period of time. Fear! I don’t want to be sick and I certainly don’t want to die from this VIRUS. I don’t know anyone who wants to get sick and I don’t know anyone that wants to die from this VIRUS. That’s why we have all changed the way we live our lives, at least for the short term.


I could never have imagined us closing our NCC services and doing everything online. We did so because we didn’t want to make anyone sick or be a place where the sickness could spread. We have acknowledged the threat of this VIRUS and we have taken appropriate and reasonable steps to protect ourselves from it.


That brings me to my main point today. There is another VIRUS out there. This VIRUS is not new, it’s been around for some 6000 years. This VIRUS also makes people sick and this VIRUS will eventually kill everyone who does not seek treatment. Left untreated, this VIRUS is 100% fatal and this VIRUS has been in pandemic form since the beginning of mankind.


This VIRUS is SIN and we’ve all been infected. We didn’t have to do anything to get this VIRUS called SIN. We were born with it. Everyone was born with it and left untreated, this VIRUS eventually kills everyone. If the VIRUS of SIN is left untreated, the mortality rate is 100%. The graveyards of the world give testimony of this truth.


Romans 5:12 (NLT2)

12 When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned.


Today, it gives me great joy to proclaim and celebrate the fact that there is a MIRACLE CURE to this VIRUS. There is a blood that cures this VIRUS called SIN. This miracle blood comes from a single person that was not, and has not been infected with this VIRUS called SIN. The blood of this single person is unique because his father is not Adam. The blood of this man is unique among all mankind. The blood of this man cures the VIRUS of SIN 100% of the time. The blood of this man actually forgives and removes the SIN that brought the VIRUS into the kingdoms of men. The man’s name is Jesus! His blood completely cures the VIRUS and removes the SIN that has brought death to all mankind.


Can you imagine a news story in a few weeks or months where President Trump would stand in front of the world and announce that they have found a cure to the COVID-19 VIRUS? Can you imagine the celebrations? Can you imagine the joy that would go around the world? I hope that day comes soon, but I am left with this reality. If every person on earth was suddenly cured of the Coronavirus, we would all still die from the VIRUS of SIN.


We are approaching the Easter season, the Passover, where the Blood of a Lamb caused death to Passover the houses of children of Israel. This is when we celebrate the fact that death and the grave could not hold Jesus...death could not hold this man whose blood has the power to cure the sins of all mankind. The BLOOD and RESURRECTION of Jesus cures every VIRUS that has ever plagued mankind, yes even SIN. The Resurrection is the ultimate victory over death itself.


Today, we celebrate the cure to death itself. The Blood of the Lamb, Jesus Christ, has set us free from the fear of sickness and death. We are free, truly free because our SINS have been forgiven by the BLOOD of the LAMB. The VIRUS has a cure.


You can’t buy this cure, it’s free. There are no deductibles or co-pays. You don’t need the government to set up your appointment. All you need to receive this cure is right now, within your reach. It’s called faith. To believe that Jesus is the Son of God, the Savior of the world. To believe that He is able to forgive sins and set you free from the fear of sin and death. Forever Free! That’s what it means to be truly free.


John 8:32 (NLT2)

32 And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the change

tuesday, march 10, 2020

The Bible is filled with amazing Before and After stories. I would like to focus on one of those today and see if we can identify The Change. What is it that can change the Before-Life of a person into an incredible After-Life? My example today is a man named Simon Peter. He’s the guy that denied that he even knew who Jesus was when confronted by some servant girls on that Friday night. But that was the Before-Life Peter. Peter was afraid and that fear caused him to do something he never thought he would do...deny that he knew Jesus. Let’s look at the Before-Life of Peter.


Matthew 26:69-74 (NLT)

69 Meanwhile, Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant girl came over and said to him, “You were one of those with Jesus the Galilean.”

70 But Peter denied it in front of everyone. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said.

71 Later, out by the gate, another servant girl noticed him and said to those standing around, “This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.”

72 Again Peter denied it, this time with an oath. “I don’t even know the man,” he said.

73 A little later some of the other bystanders came over to Peter and said, “You must be one of them; we can tell by your Galilean accent.”

74 Peter swore, “A curse on me if I’m lying—I don’t know the man!” And immediately the rooster crowed.


Peter was a man’s man. Nothing about Peter was wimpy and yet these servant girls made him deny Christ. How was that even possible? Peter was afraid! Fear had captured Peter’s heart and caused him to do something unimaginable. Peter denied that he even knew who Jesus was. That was the Before-Life Peter. Now, let’s look at the After-Life of Peter.


This next scene is after the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. Peter is at the Jerusalem Temple and now stands before the same people that condemned Jesus to death on the cross. But this time, Peter is very different. Something about Peter has changed. The Before and After are remarkably different.


Acts 4:16-20 (NLT)

16 “What should we do with these men [Peter and John]?” they asked each other. “We can’t deny that they have performed a miraculous sign, and everybody in Jerusalem knows about it.

17 But to keep them from spreading their propaganda any further, we must warn them not to speak to anyone in Jesus’ name again.”

18 So they called the apostles back in and commanded them never again to speak or teach in the name of Jesus.

19 But Peter and John replied, “Do you think God wants us to obey you rather than him?

20 We cannot stop telling about everything we have seen and heard.”


The Before-Life Peter didn’t even want to admit he knew Jesus, but this After-Life Peter can’t stop talking about Jesus. What has changed in Peter’s life? It’s obvious that these Jerusalem leaders had the power and authority to put Peter to death, but Peter doesn’t seem to be afraid anymore. What has happened to Peter? Peter says these words to those threatening men... We cannot stop telling about everything we have seen and heard.


What had Peter seen and what had Peter heard that made this incredible change? What had Peter experienced since that night when he shrank back in fear in front of those servant girls? What has changed Peter’s fearful Before-Life to this powerful and unafraid After-Life?


Peter saw the power of The Resurrection. Peter saw a dead man become alive again. And if that was not enough to eliminate Peter’s fear of death...Jesus’ Spirit (Holy Spirit) has now taken up residence inside of Peter’s heart. This is The Change that removes the fear of death. The resurrection always overcomes death. Peter had become convinced that his After-Life was eternal. Peter could now see that his Before-Life could never compare to this Christ centered After-Life.


Jesus has promised the before and after change of Peter to anyone who would believe and call upon His Holy Name. The Holy Spirit belongs to those who have given up their Before-Life to the After-Life of Jesus. The Resurrection is promised to all who have given up their Before-Life to the After-Life of Jesus. There is something between these Before and the After lives of mankind. It’s called faith...to believe in the message of Jesus Christ.


John 5:24 (NLT)

24 “I tell you the truth, those who listen to my message and believe in God who sent me have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have already passed from death into life.


Already...passed from death to life. Peter knew about this already event. Peter knew that the Resurrection from the dead was already his through faith in Jesus Christ. And because of that, Peter was no longer afraid. Jesus still stands in the middle of the Before and the After. And yes, the Resurrection changes everything about the After-Life.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen.


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about priests

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Do you know where the original Jewish priests came from? The family line of priests came from a time of great rebellion in the days of Moses. God had just used Moses to deliver the Children of Israel out of Egypt and God was giving the Law to Moses on the mountain. While Moses was on the mountain, the people of Israel went into rebellion and created a golden calf to worship.


This is the question and point for today’s word. Did everyone participate in this pagan golden calf idolatry? Did everyone go along. Do you know where the Jewish priesthood originated, with whom?


Moses throws down the stone tablets of God (10 Commandments) and calls his brother Aaron to account for this idolatrous rebellion.


Exodus 32:19-24 (NLT)

19 When they came near the camp, Moses saw the calf and the dancing, and he burned with anger. He threw the stone tablets to the ground, smashing them at the foot of the mountain.

20 He took the calf they had made and burned it. Then he ground it into powder, threw it into the water, and forced the people to drink it.

21 Finally, he turned to Aaron and demanded, “What did these people do to you to make you bring such terrible sin upon them?”

22 “Don’t get so upset, my lord,” Aaron replied. “You yourself know how evil these people are.

23 They said to me, ‘Make us gods who will lead us. We don’t know what happened to this fellow Moses, who brought us here from the land of Egypt.’

24 So I told them, ‘Whoever has gold jewelry, take it off.’ When they brought it to me, I simply threw it into the fire—and out came this calf!”


Aaron doesn’t seem to understand how dangerous this rebellion is, but Moses reveals this to be an issue of life and death before God. People are going to die because of this event. Many people are going to die...this is serious.


Did everyone join in this pagan idolatry? Did everyone go along? Do you know where the Jewish priesthood originated, with whom?


Exodus 32:25-26 (NLT)

25 Moses saw that Aaron had let the people get completely out of control, much to the amusement of their enemies.

26 So he stood at the entrance to the camp and shouted, “All of you who are on the LORD’s side, come here and join me.” And all the Levites gathered around him.


Who was on the Lord’s side when the idolatry began...they will become my priests....and all the Levites gathered around him (Moses). These Levites had refused to go along with the crowd. These Levites had chosen to separate themselves from the sin and pagan partying of the crowd. And how did God respond to the Levites and to the crowd? I hope you’re ready for this because it’s heavy.


Exodus 32:27-28 (NLT)

27 Moses told them, “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: Each of you, take your swords and go back and forth from one end of the camp to the other. Kill everyone—even your brothers, friends, and neighbors.”

28 The Levites obeyed Moses’ command, and about 3,000 people died that day.


Whose side are you on...that was God’s question to the people. One side was life and the other side was death. This is heavy and this is truth. People that are not on the Lord’s side are going to die. That’s why this is such a serious issue. The next verse reveals the origin of the Jewish priesthood, those whom God would choose to serve in the Tabernacle that would house His glory. Who were they...the Levites that stood with God when the idolatry came to the camp of Israel!


Exodus 32:29 (NLT)

29 Then Moses told the Levites, “Today you have ordained yourselves for the service of the LORD, for you obeyed him even though it meant killing your own sons and brothers. Today you have earned a blessing.”


Some of you will read this today and understand. Some of you will read this and say that God is unfair or too harsh. Some of you will read this and wonder what this has to do with us today. That’s the real reason I write this word today...what does this have to do with us today? Do you know who the Lord’s priests are today? Our High Priest is Jesus, but do you know who the Lord’s priests are today? Do you know what qualifies a person to be a priest of God today? And yes, this too is about life and death.


1 Peter 2:4-9 (NLT)

4 You are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God’s temple. He was rejected by people, but he was chosen by God for great honor.

5 And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God.

6 As the Scriptures say, “I am placing a cornerstone in Jerusalem, chosen for great honor, and anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced.”

7 Yes, you who trust him recognize the honor God has given him. But for those who reject him, “The stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.”

8 And, “He is the stone that makes people stumble, the rock that makes them fall.” They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them.

9 But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.


The true church, these holy-royal priests are the ones that have come to Christ, the Living Cornerstone of God’s Temple. These priests (who serve under the High Priest-Jesus) will refuse to operate or participate in the darkness. They too will stand apart from the crowd, apart from the world that has rejected the Cornerstone that God has placed in Zion. Can you hear these words from our Lord Jesus today... All of you who are on the LORD’s side, come here and join me.”. These true priests of Christ will stand with God, no matter the cost, because these priests understand that this is a life and death issue. And the Second Death will be much worse than the first.


Revelation 20:6 (NLT)

6 Blessed and holy are those who share in the first resurrection. For them the second death holds no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him a thousand years.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about distractions

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

I’ve noticed an alarming trend in our culture. You go into a restaurant and sit down with your family for a nice meal. You look around and every person in the room is looking down at their cell phones instead of talking to each other. I’m seeing this everywhere I go now. People are sitting right next to each other but “not connecting”, not really. Texting is replacing true conversation. People are looking into everyone’s lives instead of the person they are sitting by. Shallow is replacing deep. So many distractions! What is going on anyway?


I don’t think this trend is healthy for our society. These shallow relationships are leaving people lonely and isolated from each other. Deep relationships require time and focus. Deep fellowship with others requires paying attention and a devotion of time. We don’t need more texting or social media type relationships. We need more deep relationships. Our soul cries out for true fellowship. That usually requires more focus and less distraction.


This cell phone culture has also revealed a deeper and even more troubling spiritual problem. Shallow (texting-like) relationships with God and with other believers. Jesus clearly outlines the first and second most important commandments and they both have to do with developing a deep and personal love relationship with God and then with others.


Matthew 22:37-40 (NLT)

37 Jesus replied, “‘You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’

38 This is the first and greatest commandment.

39 A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

40 The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”


This love relationship with God and with others requires a commitment of time and effort to develop. Distractions are the enemy of this type of relationship. Just being around God doesn’t mean you are personally connected with God any more than being friends with someone on social media makes them your real friend. Just being around church doesn’t mean you are personally connected with and loving others inside the body of Christ. It’s like sitting at a table with your loving family while being distracted with the social media app on your phone. You end up with many casual acquaintances, but no true fellowship.


This is not a new spiritual problem. Jesus reveals this in his conversation with the spiritual leaders of his day. They were searching for God and eternal life in the Holy Scriptures but missing the personal relationship and fellowship with Jesus that was right in front of them.


John 5:39-40 (NLT)

39 “You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me! 40 Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life.


Yes, Jesus and eternal life are both revealed by searching the Holy Scriptures, but these Scriptures point us to the real message of God...the love relationship with Christ. This relationship is not knowing about God but experiencing God through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

The Messiah, the very Son of God was standing right in front of those religious leaders and they didn’t recognize Him and refused to receive Him. They were so distracted with religion that they missed the relationship of knowing Christ. How is that possible? They knew the Scriptures, but they did not KNOW JESUS. The knew about the coming Messiah, but they were unable to experience Him personally. How is this possible?


John 17:3 (NLT)

3 And this is the way to have eternal life—to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the one you sent to earth.


We come to know God the Father by coming to know Christ the Son. Jesus is the only way to know God the Father. We come to know Christ the Son as the Holy Spirit reveals Him through the Word. The knowledge of the Bible does not replace our relationship with the Son. Notice the next 2 verses in this Jesus moment...verse 4-5...


John 17:4-5 (NLT)

4 I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you gave me to do.

5 Now, Father, bring me into the glory we shared before the world began.


Jesus revealed the glory of His Father by completing the work of the Father and we have been called to do the same thing. As believers, we are all parts of the Body of Christ (the church) and each of us must find our place and purpose in the Body by completing the work He has given us to do. This is what it means to KNOW GOD! This is what is means to EXPERIENCE GOD. We have FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD and with each other when we find our true place in Christ.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about brian

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

We said our farewells to our dear friend and brother, Brian Perry, yesterday at the church. It was a very difficult day, one of the most difficult days I’ve had in the past 20 years. Brian had only been on our church staff for about a year and a half, but wow did he make a huge impact.


When the time came for me to prepare his funeral message, I started looking back at our email conversations from 2015, when I first really got to know Brian. I came across the very first email letter that Brian sent to me on September 28, 2015. That letter was addressed to me personally and I had not shared that letter with anyone since. Brian described the events surrounding his baptism and calling of God into total obedience and surrender.


I read Brian’s 2015 letter at the opening of his funeral service yesterday and I thought it would be honoring to God and to Brian to share that same letter with the entire church today.


There is one part in Brian’s letter that I can’t get off my mind. One sentence that describes the core principle of becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ...the absolute surrender of everything to God’s will and purpose. This is that sentence that I can’t get out of my head today.


Finally, I was prepared to give almost all to Him on His command. I knew, though, that I had not completely given the self - my name and identity. And I knew that to be used fully by God, this would be a necessary step.


MY SELF, MY NAME and MY IDENTITY...that’s how Brian described his life changing journey into the fullness of Christ. Brian took that step of faith and God has since produced an eternal harvest that we will not fully understand until we meet again in the presence of our Lord, Jesus Christ.


This is Brian’s September 28, 2015 letter...


Terry,

I thank you, Will, Scott, Chad, and all the staff for your hard work over the last few months. After seeing the number of kids go through Vacation Bible School this summer, the additional tasks with the number of baptisms, and all the summer events that you guys are involved in, I'm sure it's a lot of work. I told Scott a few weeks ago that I could help with the children's services if needed (particularly since my kids go to the classes). Feel free to let me know if I can help you, Will or the staff - I need to do more service in the church.


I wanted to share with you a summary of my recent testimony, maybe the cliff's notes version, after my baptism yesterday. God began working in me a few months ago, and initially I wrestled with God for a few weeks. For two or three weeks, I cried most days driving into work as I prayed and listened to podcasts. At one point, I felt led to either be baptized again or ask for your counseling, but held back to study and pray for a period. I knew that at best I'd been a lukewarm Christian for much of my life, and God was calling me to completely surrender and put Jesus first and foremost, truly Master. God was patient with me over the summer, and I developed a closer relationship with Him than I had ever had. Finally, I was prepared to give almost all to Him on His command. I knew, though, that I had not completely given the self - my name and identity. And I knew that to be used fully by God, this would be a necessary step.


I left church on September 20th feeling fine and assured in my relationship with God. After reading and praying Monday morning, though, I felt compelled to be baptized again. I was an emotional wreck all week, praying, reading, and ultimately even trying to win God's favor by doing good and proving my salvation. Towards the end of the week, I knew that if the God wanted me to get baptized again, he'd lead me on Sunday morning and that I needed to drop the angst and questions in my own mind, and simply worship, read, and pray daily. Saturday night I read in Henry Blackaby's book about the crisis of belief. I was already at a pivotal moment, and that crystalized it. Knowing that God has a calling for each of us, I knew that if I were to take that calling 100%, this was the time to be obedient and completely surrender. Sunday morning, I continued reading through the Book of Mark, and read through the Garden of Gethsemane and Jesus' death and resurrection. Mark 14:36 has long been a verse that I reference and pray about. After reading early Sunday morning before church, I told God that I would leave the decision to be baptized to Him. If it was His will, I trusted that he would call or work through the Holy Spirit and I'd hear His voice.


Little did I know that your words and sermon a couple hours later would be spot-on what I'd been praying, studying, and struggling with. As you talked through the Garden of Gethsemane, there could be no clearer message that those words were directed towards me. I chocked back the tears in the pew while you spoke, but once the invitation was open and I took those first couple steps down the aisle, it was pure joy.


I thank you for all you've been doing, and am thankful for the work of the Holy Spirit through you and the church. While it was the Holy Spirit that pierced my heart a few months ago and began a radical change in my relationship with Jesus, He used a few books by A.W. Tozer as one of the tools to accomplish this. You had mentioned him in a couple sermons, so I picked up a few of his books. I thank you for that as well.


Brian


Please continue to remember Jennifer and the girls in your daily prayers.

Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

 

a word from terry about

the wilderness

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

A 40-year journey that should have taken 40 days. That’s the story of Moses and the children of Israel. They were going to the Promised Land. They were on their way, but the 40-day trip turned into a 40-year disaster. An entire generation would be lost in the wilderness. The Promised Land hadn’t moved. It was still there, waiting for their arrival. So, what about this wilderness? What about this dangerous journey through the wilderness?


This is question for today. Is the wilderness actually connected to the Promised Land? Does God make promises and fulfill promises in the wilderness...yes! God brought manna, the bread of heaven, to the people while they were in the wilderness. God brought water from a rock for the people to drink while they were in that barren wilderness. Yes, God was with them in the wilderness. God’s promises were not only for the Promised Land. God’s promises were available and ever present in the wilderness.


Today is our time in the wilderness. Yes, the Promised Land of God’s abiding presence lies ahead of us, but God’s blessed promises are with us right now, today. The wilderness is a time of testing, a time when we all decide whether or not we truly believe and accept the promises of God as truth. Can we trust God in the wilderness? Will God keep His promises in the wilderness?


God had clearly announced His promises to the children of Israel and God has clearly announced His promises to us today. All of those promises are recorded in the Holy Scriptures. And here we are in the wilderness. What happens in the wilderness is crucial and connected to what happens in the Promised Land. God records the names of His children in the wilderness. Do you believe that?


Hebrews 4:1-5 (NLT)

1 God’s promise of entering his rest still stands, so we ought to tremble with fear that some of you might fail to experience it.

2 For this good news—that God has prepared this rest—has been announced to us just as it was to them. But it did them no good because they didn’t share the faith of those who listened to God.

3 For only we who believe can enter his rest. As for the others, God said, “In my anger I took an oath: ‘They will never enter my place of rest,’” even though this rest has been ready since he made the world.

4 We know it is ready because of the place in the Scriptures where it mentions the seventh day: “On the seventh day God rested from all his work.”

5 But in the other passage God said, “They will never enter my place of rest.”


The promise of the Promised Land still stands in our generation. It’s called Heaven. The Promised Land is when we finally get to rest, away from the hardships and sufferings of the wilderness. The people then, and the people now knew about the promised rest of God in the Promised Land. But, it did them no good because they didn’t share the faith with those who listened to God.


It's called faith. Faith is being sure and certain that God will keep His promises in the wilderness and in the Promised Land called heaven. God records the names of His children in the wilderness. For it is in the wilderness that our faith is refined and purified like gold.


1 Peter 1:6-7 (NLT)

6 So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while.

7 These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.


I admit today that I don’t like the wilderness very much. I look forward to the Promised Land with great anticipation. But I also understand this truth today. God records the names of His children in the wilderness. The wilderness reveals the purity of our faith. Faith in the promises of God, revealed through the Word of God. This is the key that opens the gate into the Promised Land. Yes, the wilderness and the Promised Land are connected.


Every promise of God is revealed and fulfilled in Jesus Christ. By faith, we believe that He is with us in the wilderness and He will meet us all at the entrance to the Promised Land.


2 Corinthians 1:20 (NLT)

20 For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for his glory.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

A word from terry about

the sanctity of life

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

To:  NCC


This past Sunday was Sanctity of Life Sunday around America. The US Supreme court ruled on Roe vs. Wade on January 22, 1973 and that ruling legalized abortion in America for the first time. That was a dark day in American history. Could anyone have imagined then, that this Supreme Court decision would open the door for some 57 million babies to be murdered inside their mother’s womb over the next 46 years in our nation? We mourn the shedding of innocent blood that has brought guilt and shame upon our nation. I took the time to read a statement this past Sunday during our normal Communion time. I wanted to include that statement in my Word from Terry email to the Church today. I’m also attaching a link to the video of that statement that was given to the church during our communion time this past Sunday. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bbe0ahkeUME

  

Today is Sanctity of Human Life Sunday. 

We stop each Sunday and remember the Sanctified Life of Jesus Christ and what His life and death means to each of us.


The Cross of Christ displayed God’s view of life...God the Father was willing to do anything to save us from death and give us life...eternal life. Yes, even sacrificing His Only Son.

And how will the world respond to this great love of God...this gift of life, eternal life from God, the Father?


I received an email from Ken Ham last week that shook me and awakened me. Do you know what the number one cause of death IN THE WHOLE WORLD was in 2019?

Would you guess cancer, heart disease, aids, malaria or gun violence?

Do you know the number one cause of worldwide death is completely preventable?

The number one cause of death in 2019 was ABORTION. 42.4 million babies were murdered inside their mother’s wombs last year. 42.4 million babies died in what should have been the safest and most protected space on earth, the womb of their mother.

This next number is the one that shook me. That 42.4 million number of deaths is more than twice the number of all worldwide deaths caused by cancer, smoking, alcohol, traffic accidents, malaria and aids COMBINED.


We live in a world that is literally killing itself...willfully and deliberately killing itself at a rate that the rational human mind cannot comprehend.

  • That’s 116,164 babies per day worldwide
  • That’s 4860 babies per hour worldwide
  • That’s 81 babies murdered per minute (about 160 while I’ve been talking)

Where is the outrage? Where is the cry for justice for their deaths? Where’s the church? 

Instead of outrage, I see politicians lobbying for more and more power to kill at will, even after birth.

Jesus told us in advance that Satan’s agenda was to KILL, STEAL AND DESTROY and he’s become quite proficient at it.


What is the hope, why address this topic today, right now in our communion with Jesus time?

The Gospel of Jesus Christ is our only hope...The message of Christ is life itself.

Without Jesus there is no hope, no life, no truth...only death.


Today we proclaim that human life is sacred and we are all created in the image and likeness of God. Acknowledging that God’s greatest desire is to save us from sin and death and give us eternal life.

Think about this gift of eternal life as you take communion today and pray that God will save us from Satan’s great power of deception that leads many into death.

 

I encourage each of you to prayerfully consider this issue of life today. The church cannot and will not be neutral on this this issue of LIFE.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the 7th dip

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Our staff spent Monday and Tuesday at the Kentucky Minister’s Retreat at Lake Cumberland State Park. The speaker was great, and he gave a perspective that I had never thought about before. He asked this question:


Which of the 7 dips in the Jordan River was the most important to Commander Naaman? Let me refresh your memory so that you will understand the question.


2 Kings 5:1 (NLT)

1 The king of Aram had great admiration for Naaman, the commander of his army, because through him the LORD had given Aram great victories. But though Naaman was a mighty warrior, he suffered from leprosy.


Naaman ends up presenting himself to God’s prophet, Elisha. Elisha tells Commander Naaman to dip himself seven times in the Jordan River and his leprosy will be cured.


2 Kings 5:10 (NLT)

10 But Elisha sent a messenger out to him with this message: “Go and wash yourself seven times in the Jordan River. Then your skin will be restored, and you will be healed of your leprosy.”


Now, back to the question...which of the 7 dips in the Jordan River was the most important to Commander Naaman? Some people would say it was the 7th dip because that was the dip that cured him. Others would say it was the first dip because that was the dip that proved his faith in God of Elisha’s to heal him. Both answers have some truth, but there is another perspective available to us today. All of them were equally important!


If Naaman had not taken number one, he would have never been able to take number two. Had Naaman not taken number two, he would never have been able to take number three...and so on. Do you see it? The real answer is found in perseverance and faith...we never stop dipping until we reach that number seven. Each dip was important and necessary to take Naaman to the cure of his disease. Each dip had equal value in relation to the ultimate cure.


What is our lesson from this today? God has promised each of us the ultimate cure to our sickness of sin and death, the Resurrection into eternal life. That cure is sure and certain for all those who receive the promise of God by faith in Jesus Christ. Faith is what keeps us dipping! Faith is what keeps us in the race until that 7th dip of healing. Faith is believing Romans 8:28 to be God’s message to all of us today.


Romans 8:28 (NIV)

28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.


All Things, yes, all things in our lives can be compared to the dips one through six. We are each currently living in the dips one through six. They are all important parts of our journey toward God and our ultimate healing. We cannot give up and we cannot lose heart while we stand between dips one and six. I rejoice in this truth today. THE SEVENTH DIP IS COMING SOON! Keep Dipping church!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about fear

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Fear... an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.


If that is the definition of “fear” then there is much to be feared these days. Fear is a human emotion caused by a certain belief. If you believe someone is coming to harm you, your emotion generates fear. Fear is a powerful human emotion and this emotion can be very helpful and very harmful as well.


Fear keeps us from doing stupid stuff. Fear keeps us away from known danger. In this case fear is a useful emotion. Fear is based upon something...something you believe to be true and real. For example, I’m not afraid of flying elephants because I think they are true or real.


Fear can also become a destructive emotion, causing a person to be “fearful” to the point that they can no longer function in society or live a full life. This type of fear is based upon a belief that is not real and not true.


Fear is an emotion caused by a belief. A belief is what a person accepts as true and real. So, what you do you believe is true and real today? Is there anything that we should fear today? Yes, there is something that we should all legitimately fear today, and it is based on the ultimate source of truth. Some people accept and believe this ultimate source of truth (the Bible) and some reject this ultimate source of truth.


Hebrews 4:1-5 (NLT)

1 God’s promise of entering his rest still stands, so we ought to tremble with fear that some of you might fail to experience it.

2 For this good news—that God has prepared this rest—has been announced to us just as it was to them. But it did them no good because they didn’t share the faith of those who listened to God.

3 For only we who believe can enter his rest. As for the others, God said, “In my anger I took an oath: ‘They will never enter my place of rest,’” even though this rest has been ready since he made the world.

4 We know it is ready because of the place in the Scriptures where it mentions the seventh day: “On the seventh day God rested from all his work.”

5 But in the other passage God said, “They will never enter my place of rest.”


Christians accept the Bible as absolute truth and that truth becomes the foundation for our belief system. That belief system directly affects our fears or our lack of fear. Our fears are based on something that we believe are true and real. That fear then motivates us to adjust our lives appropriately and in response to that fear.


God has offered an eternal rest and peace in a place called Heaven for all who will believe in the Truth of Jesus Christ as the Son of God. As of today, the promised invitation to enter God’s rest still stands open for all to experience. God’s promise of entering his rest still stands, so we ought to tremble with fear that some of you might fail to experience it.


Yes, we live in a troubled and fearful world today. There are ballistic missiles crossing over international borders and people are dying in wars around the world. These events cause reasonable fears even in believers today. But know this truth today. This truth should be the ultimate source of our potential fears.


John 11:25-26 (NIV)

25 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; 26 and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?"


Today, in the midst of all the crazy world news we have The Rest and The Resurrection. The promises of God through Jesus Christ our Lord. God gave us His promise, His Word and He never breaks either. May this “belief” be the source of our fear or lack thereof.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about "new"

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Do you like NEW things? Are you looking forward to the NEW year? There is something about the word “NEW” that is favorable and desirable. Why do we look at something NEW as a favorable thing, vs. unfavorable? I like NEW, but NEW seems to always be temporary.


I’ve noticed that everything that was NEW at one time has now become not NEW or moving in the direction of old. Deterioration, decay and aging are the reality of our present world. Everything that was once considered NEW...will one day be old because of deterioration, decay and aging. Everything in creation falls under this absolute law of deterioration, decay and aging.


This is one reason that I’ve always thought Darwin’s idea of human evolution to be a silly notion. The concept of evolution assumes that everything is evolving, which means moving up to a higher and better state or condition. But reality says everything is devolving, moving down to a less desirable state or condition. Deterioration, decay and aging are not moving up words, and how do you make something NEW more NEW in our present world in which everything ages?


This is where my word of truth comes in today, on our NEW-Year’s Eve. What if the power that put all creation into deterioration, decay and aging would turn everything upside down? What if someone could stop all the deterioration. decay and aging and make everything NEW, but this time it would all stay NEW, forever?


Is there someone, some power that can do that...make everything NEW and stop all the deterioration, decay and aging? Do we have any information about such a plan? Yes, and we call it “Good News”. This future plan of God has been revealed and announced.


Revelation 21:5-7 (NLT)

5 And the one sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything NEW!” And then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.”

6 And he also said, “It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life.

7 All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children.


This is the future world for all the children of God. NEW, forever NEW! Can you imagine living in a place where nothing ever gets old? Nothing ever deteriorates, decays or ages. People don’t age! Nothing gets old...nothing!


We must understand that we are currently living in a fallen and cursed world. There is suffering everywhere because of this deterioration, decay and aging. All of creation is groaning and waiting for the day when God is going to make everything NEW...and this time it will stay NEW forever.


Romans 8:18-22 (NLT)

18 Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later.

19 For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are.

20 Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope,

21 the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay.

22 For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.


Glory is coming!

NEW is coming! 

Freedom from death and decay is coming! 

The day when God reveals the names of His forever children is coming! 

A NEW creation is coming. 

A NEW heaven and a NEW earth are coming. 


Can you imagine living in a world where nothing or no one ever gets old? This is what all creation, including the redeemed of the Lord are waiting for. NEW, forever NEW! 


The Apostle Peter must have caught a glimpse of this NEW.


2 Peter 3:11-13 (NLT)

11 Since everything around us is going to be destroyed like this, what holy and godly lives you should live,

12 looking forward to the day of God and hurrying it along. On that day, he will set the heavens on fire, and the elements will melt away in the flames.

13 But we are looking forward to the NEW heavens and NEW earth he has promised, a world filled with God’s righteousness.


The Apostle John saw this NEW creation and wrote it down for us to see.


Revelation 21:1-4 (NLT)

1 Then I saw a NEW heaven and a NEW earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone.

2 And I saw the holy city, the NEW Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.

3 I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them.

4 He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”


Rejoice today, on this NEW Year’s Eve...rejoice in the word “NEW”. For this word belongs to all who have been purchased and redeemed by the NEW COVENANT BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the book of truth

Tuesday, december 17, 2019

Jesus said, “I am the truth”. Pilate asked, “What is truth”? The Apostle Paul said, “Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth.” The Apostle Peter said, “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness.” The Hebrew writer said, “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.”


The word “truth” is used 224 times in the NIV Bible translation. The phrase, “I tell you the truth” is found 78 times in the NIV Bible and all except one is found inside the four gospels as a direct statement from Jesus. The only time you find this statement “I tell you the truth” (in the NIV) outside the gospels is one time, in the Book of Daniel (Daniel 11:2) and guess who reveals the truth there? His name is not mentioned specifically, but this is how Daniel describes the person who reveals the Book of Truth to him.


Daniel 10:4-6 (NIV)

4 On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I [Daniel] was standing on the bank of the great river, the Tigris, 5 I looked up and there before me was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of the finest gold around his waist. 6 His body was like chrysolite, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude.


This man, dressed in linen with a belt of finest gold reveals the future to Daniel from a book called “Truth”.


Daniel 10:21 (NIV)

21 but first I will tell you what is written in the Book of Truth.


I tell you the truth”! 77 times! All from Jesus, and all of them have been revealed to our generation through a Book of Truth called “The Bible”. Do you believe the Bible is a Book of Truth? Does it matter? The Apostle John thought it mattered when he wrote this down in the Book of Truth.


John 21:24-25 (NIV)

24 This is the disciple [John] who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. We know that his testimony is true. 25 Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.


I pray that each of you will rejoice in the knowledge of God from the Book of Truth this Christmas season. The Bible, the Book of Truth, has revealed the Truth of God for all mankind to see and know. And because of this revelation of Truth, we can live abundant lives of freedom and hope as we wait patiently for our Lord’s return. Notice the importance of this Truth in John’s letter to the church.


2 John 1:1-3 (NIV)

The elder [John], To the chosen lady and her children [the church], whom I love in the truth--and not I only, but also all who know the truth-- 2 because of the truth, which lives in us and will be with us forever: 3 Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father's Son, will be with us in truth and love.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the shepherds

Monday, december 9, 2019

It would be hard to go through a Christmas season without someone talking about the shepherds. For some 2000 years now, people have been talking about a group of nameless sheepherders outside Bethlehem. Nameless men, in the dark. Why would anyone care about nameless men in the dark? That’s the good news for today. There is someone who cared and cares about nameless people in the dark.


The Gospel of Luke reveals that these shepherds were the first people on earth to hear the heavenly announcement of Messiah’s birth. Why would God send his angel and a multitude of heavenly hosts to nameless men in the dark? Why not send the angels to the Jewish priests down the road in Jerusalem. Why shepherds and not princes? Why shepherds and not rabbi’s? Shepherds are such lowly people, even social outcasts.


The answer to these questions is very good news for us today. The first recipients of God’s greatest good news were ordinary people. Luke doesn’t even record their names, just nameless men in the dark. These shepherds represent the part of society that doesn’t get much attention. Nameless men in the dark. Shepherds were the underclass and undervalued people of that day.


Nameless men in the dark. But there is One that knows their names. There is One that doesn’t see the world’s social order as we see it. There is One that sees the value of each and every soul, regardless of their social status. God proved that He does not show social class favoritism by bringing the greatest good news of all time to nameless men in the dark.


Actually, there are shepherds all over this story of Jesus. David was the undervalued shepherd boy that wasn’t even allowed in the room when the prophet Samuel came to anoint the next King of Israel. Jesus himself would be called the Good Shepherd and the King of the Jews. But Jesus lived the life of a homeless man and the Jewish elites refused to accept Him as their King.


Shepherds have never been known to get a lot of respect in this world’s social order. But this is God’s great pleasure. God’s social order has never aligned itself with that of the world.


Luke 10:21 (NLT)

21 At that same time Jesus was filled with the joy of the Holy Spirit, and he said, “O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding these things from those who think themselves wise and clever, and for revealing them to the childlike. Yes, Father, it pleased you to do it this way.


This Christmas, thank God for those nameless shepherds. Thank him because He is the One that notices all the nameless people in the dark. He doesn’t just notice us. He has sent us the greatest of all good news. The Light has come, and He knows our names.


Matthew 4:15-16 (NLT)

15 “In the land of Zebulun and of Naphtali, beside the sea, beyond the Jordan River, in Galilee where so many Gentiles live,

16 the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light. And for those who lived in the land where death casts its shadow, a light has shined.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about the Grinch

Monday, December 2, 2019

I’m going to make a personal confession today. It’s about this time every year that I start to feel like the Grinch. Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas. But I truly despise the commercialism of Christmas. I was watching the football game last night when I felt the Grinch attack coming on. Everything was about “stuff”. Everything on the television was telling me that more stuff would make me more-happy. Every Christmas commercial was about stuff, stuff, stuff. Not one mention of Jesus, peace on earth or shepherds keeping watch over their flocks at night.


Even the ball game was filled with it, from the Chevrolet halftime report to the Geiko play of the game to some sort of beer drinking knight that I still haven’t figured out. I tried watching the football game with the sound muted, but I still felt the Grinch syndrome coming upon me.


This morning I opened up a random page in my Bible and guess what page I turned to? My Bible opened up to this passage and the Grinch spirit has been cast out.


Philippians 3:7-9 (NLT)

7 I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done.

8 Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ 9 and become one with him.


Today, my heart is filled with joy and hope because I have everything I need. Everything that is truly important has already been taken care of because of what happened on that first Christmas day. That’s when God became a man, the Word became flesh and blood human. God came down to our world to save us from our hopeless life of sin and death. I have received a Christmas gift of infinite and eternal value. Everything else (all the stuff) pales in comparison to the gift of knowing Christ. Valuable vs. Worthless. Eternal vs. Temporary. Our peace and contentment will be determined by being able to tell the difference between the two.


One last point...there is nothing wrong with having stuff, until that stuff begins to compete with that which has infinite value...knowing Christ.


And by the way...watch out for the Grinch!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

Thanksgiving

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

I am thankful for so many things on this Thanksgiving week. I’m thankful for my family, our health, to be a part of such a powerful church and to have so many wonderful friends around me. I’m thankful to live in a place that still believes in God and still respects the authority of the Holy Scriptures. I’m thankful for the promises of God that have been revealed to me from those Holy Scriptures since I was a small child. I’m thankful for the hope and the sense of anticipation that the Holy Spirit has placed in my heart at this stage of my life. There are so many things to be thankful for today, but there is one that stands out today, above all the rest.


I’m thankful for The Resurrection from the dead. God has done many miraculous things on this earth since the time of creation and He has done many miracles in and around His people in these past 6000 years, but The Resurrection stands as the basis of all our hope this Thanksgiving season. Let me explain.


When I say “The Resurrection” I am specifically referring to the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the grave. There are many bodily resurrections recorded in the Scriptures. I’ll give you some examples.


God heard the prophet Elijah’s prayer and raised the widow’s son in the Old Testament. God’s power, through the Apostle Peter, also raised Tabitha from the dead in the New Testament.


Acts 9:40 (NIV)

40 Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, "Tabitha, get up." She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up.

Jesus himself raised Lazarus from the dead some 4 days after his burial. Jesus also showed mercy to a widow that was preparing to bury her only son and raised him from the dead while he laid in the coffin.


Luke 7:14-16 (NIV)

14 Then he [Jesus] went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it stood still. He said, "Young man, I say to you, get up!"

15 The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.

16 They were all filled with awe and praised God. "A great prophet has appeared among us," they said. "God has come to help his people."


Can you imagine the rejoicing and thanksgiving that followed all these events? Look at the mother’s thanksgiving statement after Elijah raised her son from the dead:


1 Kings 17:22-24 (NIV)

22 The LORD heard Elijah's cry, and the boy's life returned to him, and he lived.

23 Elijah picked up the child and carried him down from the room into the house. He gave him to his mother and said, "Look, your son is alive!"

24 Then the woman said to Elijah, "Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the LORD from your mouth is the truth."


The woman’s thanksgiving statement was, "Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the LORD from your mouth is the truth." There was a common response to all these resurrections...there was great thanksgiving to God. There was death and now there is life. That in itself is cause for much thanksgiving.


But there is an even greater reason for our Thanksgiving today. Do you know what that is? In every one of these biblical resurrections...that resurrected person eventually died again. All except One! Jesus died and Jesus was resurrected from the dead and He will never die again. Do you see how big this is? This is the resurrection into eternal life, not a resurrection into another death scene somewhere down the road.


This is the greatest Thanksgiving message of all time. Jesus died and experienced a bodily resurrection and anyone who joins Him in his death (to be born again) will also experience a bodily resurrection into eternal life....you will never die again...never!


Romans 6:5-11 (NLT)

5 Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was.

6 We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin.

7 For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin.

8 And since we died with Christ, we know we will also live with him.

9 We are sure of this because Christ was raised from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him.

10 When he died, he died once to break the power of sin. But now that he lives, he lives for the glory of God.

11 So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus.


Jesus will never die again. Those who have been united with Jesus through faith will NEVER DIE AGAIN! We have eternal life! Yes, right now we already have eternal life. We’re just waiting for our new body that God will put our eternal life into. That will happen at the resurrection on the last day. The body we have now is only temporary, but the life within our body is now eternal, through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Today, on this Thanksgiving week, I proclaim this spiritual truth. We have been raised to eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord. We have experienced the resurrection of the dead. The grave cannot hold us because we have been made like Him. Do you believe this? That’s what Jesus asked Martha in the graveyard scene of her dead brother Lazarus. And that’s what Jesus is asking each of us today. Do you believe this? Are you sure you believe this?


John 11:25-27 (NIV)

25 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies;

26 and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?"

27 "Yes, Lord," she told him, "I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world." 


We receive this resurrection from the dead into eternal life through faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. We are born again, born again by the water and the Spirit. We have new life inside our mortal flesh...Christ in me...the hope of glory. Christ himself, the Spirit of Christ moves into these mortal bodies and brings his never-ending life into ours. The Spirit brings life because the Spirit is life, the very breath of life.


John 5:24-26 (NIV)

24 "I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.

25 I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live.

26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself.


Have you heard His voice? You must listen to Him. This is the resurrection. Yes, this physical body of ours might pass away soon. Yes, they might fold up our tent and put it away one day, but we are not tents. We are living souls, not tents. God has promised us a new body, one like His resurrected/eternal body. When Jesus appears...we will receive our eternal tent/body.


1 John 3:2 (NLT)

2 Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is.


We will be like Him and we will never die again. This is our ultimate Thanksgiving Story. God’s great love and mercy has sent His only Son to die and experience the resurrection into eternal life. This act of mercy and love has opened up a way for us to become children of God and share in the glorious inheritance of our Heavenly Father...forever!


Happy Thanksgiving...we will never die again!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the voice

Monday, November 18, 2019

I love reading and studying the Old Testament. Knowing the Old Testament makes the events revealed in the New Testament come alive. Let me give you an example of this by studying the prophet Isaiah’s announcement of “The Voice”.


The prophet Isaiah reveals more about the coming Messiah than any other Old Testament prophet. His writings are full of prophetic revelations of the future coming of Jesus. There is one that I find particularly revealing. Chapter 30 comes in a time of great suffering and hardship. The people of Israel have abandoned their God and turned to foolish substitutes...it’s called idolatry. This idolatry has brought suffering and hardship to the land. But God is full of mercy and longs for the day when Israel will turn from their idolatry and cry out to the Lord again.


Isaiah 30:18-20 (NLT)

18 So the LORD must wait for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion. For the LORD is a faithful God. Blessed are those who wait for his help.

19 O people of Zion, who live in Jerusalem, you will weep no more. He will be gracious if you ask for help. He will surely respond to the sound of your cries.

20 Though the Lord gave you adversity for food and suffering for drink, he will still be with you to teach you. You will see your teacher with your own eyes.


Can you see the hope for Israel in these words from the prophet Isaiah? Can you apply any of this to our land today?


The Lord waits for us to come to Him and cry out for his love and compassion...forgiveness.

The Lord is faithful, gracious and full of mercy...He blesses those who cry out to Him for help.

The Lord is still willing to hear and to teach those who will cry out to Him.

The Lord has not totally abandoned them or us...He is still here...waiting.


It’s this next verse that gets me. This next verse moves my soul. This next verse reveals “The Voice” that calls us to Him. Where would we be without “The Voice”?


Isaiah 30:21 (NLT)

21 Your own ears will hear him. Right behind you a voice will say, “This is the way you should go,” whether to the right or to the left.


The Voice of Truth...is right behind you. The Voice is telling you’re the right way to go. God has not abandoned us. The Voice is still here, calling us to Him, but you must listen to The Voice. Moses also reveals The Voice.


Deuteronomy 18:15 (NLT)

15 Moses continued, “The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him.


The Apostle Peter reveals The Voice again in the New Testament and tells what will happen to those who refuse to listen to The Voice.


Acts 3:22-23 (NLT)

22 Moses said, ‘The LORD your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from among your own people. Listen carefully to everything he tells you.’

23 Then Moses said, ‘Anyone who will not listen to that Prophet will be completely cut off from God’s people.’


We must listen to The Voice because we do not know the way on our own. The prophet Elijah revealed the voice to be a “whisper”. You must listen carefully; you must pay attention to hear the gentle whisper.


1 Kings 19:11-13 (NLT)

11 “Go out and stand before me on the mountain,” the LORD told him. And as Elijah stood there, the LORD passed by, and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake.

12 And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper.

13 When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And a voice said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?


The Voice...What are you doing here, Elijah? The Voice asks each of us today...what are you doing here? Can you answer His question today? Can you hear The Voice today? Your own ears will hear him. Right behind you a voice will say, “This is the way you should go,” whether to the right or to the left.


Can you hear Him? Are you listening to Him? This is what The Voice says to us today?


John 5:24-25 (NLT)

24 “I tell you the truth, those who listen to my message and believe in God who sent me have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have already passed from death into life.

25 “And I assure you that the time is coming, indeed it’s here now, when the dead will hear my voice—the voice of the Son of God. And those who listen will live.


The Voice is calling us to life. The Voice is calling us out of death and into eternal life. The Voice is calling us away from idols and substitutes and into the Way, the Truth and the Life. The Voice is Absolute Truth and The Voice is the revelation of God’s great mercy. Do not turn away from The Voice. Turn to The Voice and listen carefully. The Voice is God’s Spirit, the Spirit of Christ calling us out of the darkness and into God’s marvelous Light.


Everyone is going to hear The Voice one day. We will all answer to The Voice one day. But those who refuse to hear the voice in this life will lose their chance to know The Voice in eternity. I challenge each of you to read this next Scripture and ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you today. You must listen to The Voice!


John 5:28-30 (NLT)

28 Don’t be so surprised! Indeed, the time is coming when all the dead in their graves will hear the voice of God’s Son,

29 and they will rise again. Those who have done good will rise to experience eternal life, and those who have continued in evil will rise to experience judgment.

30 I can do nothing on my own. I judge as God tells me. Therefore, my judgment is just, because I carry out the will of the one who sent me, not my own will.


You must listen to “The Voice”!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about snow

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

I woke up this morning to a scene of white. The weatherman had predicted it and yes it came. The ground was covered with about 2 inches of this white stuff we call snow. It’s the first snow of this season in Kentucky and we tend to make a big deal out of it. The people in Colorado have been getting snow for some time now, but this is our first of the season. Today was my favorite kind of snowfall. It fell and stuck to everything except the roads. I like that kind of snow.


Does the Bible talk about snow? Where does it come from and who controls its timing and the locations to which it will fall on our planet earth? Can man make it snow? I’m not talking about that fake stuff at the ski slopes around here. Can any person make the skies produce snow? Can any person make the snow stop when we’ve had enough? Yes, there is such a person. Yes, there is a person and a power that controls the snow. Do you know Him?


This person is not just in charge of snow, but all weather. This person is not only in charge of the weather on planet earth, but He controls the entire universe, all creation. The crazy thing is this...He is also the One that is currently holding it all together, but how? Do you know this person? Can anyone know Him? Do you know his name?


Colossians 1:15-17 (NIV)

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

16 For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.

17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.


Everything means everything. The vast universe down to the depth of the snow this morning in Kentucky...everything.


Psalm 147:4-5 (NIV)

4 He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.

5 Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.


We can’t even count the stars, but there is One that has created them and placed them all in their proper place and given them names. Can you imagine the power necessary to do all that? How big would this person have to be to do all that? And yet, He also arranges and controls the smallest details of this vast creation, like snow. Some people get snow and some people don’t. Such detail! Can any man do this? Can any person create and control with such detail?


Psalm 147:8 (NIV)

8 He covers the sky with clouds; he supplies the earth with rain and makes grass grow on the hills.


So much power and so much detail. Everything working in perfect order. Not too much and not too little or we would all die. There is always enough, but not too much. Yes, even the snow? Who is powerful enough to control all this, all the time? How does He do it?


He does it all with His Word! Yes, He speaks, and it happens. Not too much and not too little, just enough.


Psalm 147:15-18 (NIV)

15 He sends his command to the earth; his word runs swiftly.

16 He spreads the snow like wool and scatters the frost like ashes.

17 He hurls down his hail like pebbles. Who can withstand his icy blast?

18 He sends his word and melts them; he stirs up his breezes, and the waters flow.


His Word does all that, yes, His Word. It was His Word that created it all and it is His Word that now sustains it all, yes, even the snow. The Word of God gave us snow today. Have you ever thought of snow like that before? It makes it very difficult to complain about the snow when you do. The Word of God gave us snow today. The Word of God gave us life today. The Word of God gave us this Truth today. The Word of God gives us hope today. Yes, God has given us His Word and that Word came as a person, a man...delivering a promise, a covenant promise.


John 1:14 (NIV)

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.


The Word that created and controls the universe and the snow became a human, a man, and moved into the very world that He created. He came with a Word from the Father, a Promise from the Father. He came to do something that no man could do on his own. Are you ready for this Word?


Isaiah 1:18 (NIV)

18 "Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.


Rejoice in the snow today. May it remind you that God has sent His Only Begotten Son to take away our scarlet sins so that we could be whiter than the snow outside today.


And by the way, the Word has a name...Jesus...and Yes, you can know Him.


John 17:3 (NIV)

3 Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper



a word from terry

about Good Days

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Have you ever heard the question, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” It’s a frequently asked question. We ask that question, usually to ourselves when we see nice people go through times of terrible suffering, sickness or loss. We have this sense of internal justice that feels like their current condition is a bit unfair, because they are “good people”.


Is this a reasonable question for believers to ask or wonder? If so, who are the good people that these bad things are happening to. Who are they? Who are these people that have the right to ask or expect no hardship, sickness, suffering or loss in this present life? Who are they?


Psalm 14:2-3 (NLT)

2 The LORD looks down from heaven on the entire human race; he looks to see if anyone is truly wise, if anyone seeks God.

3 But no, all have turned away; all have become corrupt. No one does good, not a single one!


Well, that was the Old Testament, right? Surely that changed in the New Testament, right? The Apostle Paul quotes this same Old Testament Scripture in the New Testament.


Romans 3:9-12 (NLT)

9 Well then, should we conclude that we Jews are better than others? No, not at all, for we have already shown that all people, whether Jews or Gentiles, are under the power of sin.

10 As the Scriptures say, “No one is righteous— not even one.

11 No one is truly wise; no one is seeking God.

12 All have turned away; all have become useless. No one does good, not a single one.”


Jews, Gentiles, we have all fallen under the power of sin. There is no one righteous, not even one. So, who are these good people that bad things are wrongly and unjustly happening to? Who are they?


Please don’t misunderstand my point today! Yes, we are made right (righteous) with God when we come to faith in Jesus Christ. Yes, we become brothers and sisters of Christ and sons and daughters of God by faith in the promises of God, through Christ the Son. Yes, God is a good Father and yes, He watches over and cares for His children. But does that mean that there will be no more suffering or hardship for those who come to Christ? Does this mean only “good days” and prosperity for believers as we await the return of our King Jesus?


I want to propose a different perspective today. I want to propose a different worldview, a different way to see life as a believer in this present fallen world. Here it comes. I’m amazed that we have “Good Days”. I’m amazed that today is a “Good Day”. If we have all sinned and we have all fallen short of God’s glory. If none of us are good, even those who have received Christ, then I’m amazed that we have “Good Days” at all.


Do you know why there are good days in this present fallen world? Do you know why there are good days for believers and unbelievers in this present fallen world? I do! I know the reason, the only reason there are any good days for anyone in this present fallen world. Do you want to know the reason?


The Holy Spirit, the Spirit and person of Christ is here on this present earth, right now, yes today. He is living inside believers and those believers are the light of the world. The Spirit of Christ is the light that is holding back the darkness. The Holy Spirit is restraining evil and holding back Satan’s dark power allowing “good days”, yes even in the midst of many “bad days”. The Church is the literal Body of Christ and we are the only light that currently stands against the darkness. That Light is Christ, not us, but Christ living inside us. Jesus declares himself to be the only light of the world and the only restraint to the coming darkness.


John 8:12 (NLT)

12 Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”


Jesus declares himself to be the light and then Jesus declares the Holy Spirit filled church to be the light of the world as we await His return to this present earth.


Matthew 5:14-16 (NLT)

14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.

15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.


What do you think will happen to the world when this Light of the world is suddenly turned off? Will there be any more “good days” after this light is turned off and removed? I’ve often wondered if the 7-year tribulation period will simply be the results of this light of Christ, (abiding in the Church) being removed from the earth. Jesus told us that if those tribulation days were not cut short, there would be no life remaining on the earth.


Today is a “good day”. Yes, there are some days that are not so good, but today is a “good day”. Yes, we are living in a fallen world and there are times of suffering and hardship for everyone. But that Light of Christ is still shining in the darkness today and we have seen this great Light. We have followed this great Light even though many around us deny or mock this great Light.


John 3:19-21 (NLT)

19 And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. 20 All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed.

21 But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.”


Rejoice in this great Light today. Come into this great Light, the Light of God through Christ the Son. Yes, we will still find times of suffering, hardship and bad days, but there will also be “good days” while we await the time when there will be no more bad days, forever.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,



Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the assembly

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Do you need the assembly? Do you need to attend the assembly, those times when the body of Christ gets together for fellowship, worship and teaching? Is it important? Does it really matter if a person attends the assembly of believers?


I’m hearing more and more people tell me that they don’t really need to attend the assembly to follow Christ. They don’t really find it all that important or necessary in this issue of faith. Church attendance is on the decline nationwide, so this must be a common theme these days.


I read a recent Gallup pole that reflects this trend. In the 1950’s, 49% of Americans said they attended the weekly assembly of the church. That number now has declined to around 35%. Even those who say they regularly attend church services are now attending “less” than previously. We’ve studied this at NCC and found that our average church attender attends around 50% of the time. That means the average NCC person attends around 26 of 52 worship services per year. Is that statistic important? Does it really matter?


Let me answer that previous question with a question? Why did church attendance experience an incredible spike after the terrorist attacks of 9/11 (locally and nationally)? If the assembly is not really that important...then why did the assembly drastically increase after the attacks?


It does matter and the reality is this...church attendance is actually a reflection of the human heart toward God. When things are going well, and peace and safety prevail...church attendance slides. When trouble and fear come...church attendance becomes important again.


Those trends seem to reflect the idea that we only need God when we’re in trouble. We don’t need him so much when things are going well. Let’s face it...the attendance at the assembly is a direct reflection of the human heart. When the heart is drawn away from God...the attendance at the assembly is drawn away. When the heart draws near to God...the assembly suddenly becomes very important.


The Bible specifically tells us to NOT forsake the assembly. That same Scripture also tells us that we will need the assembly even more as we see the day of our Lords return drawing near.


Hebrews 10:25 (NIV)

25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching.


Two facts! (#1) We need the Lord all the time, every second of every day, not just after a terrorist of tragic event. (#2) We don’t really know the day of our Lord’s will return, so we must live like it’s today.


This is a heart issue. A sickness inside the human heart and this heart issue is not new. Moses declared this dangerous heart condition some 1500 years before the first coming of Jesus.


Deuteronomy 30:17-18 (NIV)

17 But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them, 18 I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess.


We need the assembly because the assembly helps keep our heart from being drawn away. We need the time of worship. We need the time of teaching and fellowship. We need to sit with those who are suffering, and we need to give them comfort and encouragement because there will come a day that we will also need that same comfort and encouragement.


Moses revealed the danger of a wandering heart in the Old Testament and the Hebrew writer repeats it in the New Testament:


Hebrews 3:12-14 (NIV)

12 See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness.

14 We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first.


I hope to see you at the assembly this Sunday.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about nothing

Monday, October 21, 2019

You might find the title today a little bit confusing but stay with me. The idea today is actually based on two words, “Everything and Nothing. Let’s begin with the word “Everything”...everything is all that exists, the opposite of nothing. I’d like to ask 5 questions.


1.  Where did everything come from?

2.  Who does everything belong to?

3.  What is holding everything together?

4.  Where is everything going?

5.  What happens to everything in the end?


In many ways, how you answer these five questions determines how you view life itself, your worldview. I would like to disclose my worldview and what I consider to be the answer to these 5 questions.


1.  I believe everything came from God.

2.  I believe everything belongs to God.

3.  I believe everything is being held together by God.

4.  I believe everything is heading toward God.

5.  I believe everything will belong to God in the end.


I have come to this worldview by reading the Bible. I consider the Bible to be God’s Word and His revelation of everything we need to know about everything right now. Jesus told his followers that everything written in the Scriptures about Him was going to come true...everything! He said this before the cross and He said it again after the resurrection.


Luke 22:37 (NLT) BEFORE THE CROSS

37 For the time has come for this prophecy about me to be fulfilled: ‘He was counted among the rebels.’ Yes, everything written about me by the prophets will come true.”


Luke 24:44-48 (NLT) AFTER THE RESURRECTION

44 Then he said, “When I was with you before, I told you that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must be fulfilled.”

45 Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. 46 And he said, “Yes, it was written long ago that the Messiah would suffer and die and rise from the dead on the third day. 47 It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.’ 48 You are witnesses of all these things.


The same Holy Scriptures declare that faith in Jesus Christ as the only begotten Son of God makes us part of the family of God, actual children of God. And what do the children of God get in the end? Everything! These children of God, through faith in Jesus Christ will share in everything that belongs to the Father. And everything belongs to the Father.


Galatians 4:4-7 (NLT)

4 But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law.

5 God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. 6 And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.” 7 Now you are no longer a slave but God’s own child. And since you are his child, God has made you his heir.


So, now for the big questions. What if we don’t belong to Christ? What if we aren’t adopted as God’s children? What if we don’t have faith and what if we reject the Gospel Message of Christ? What happens to everything then? That’s where the opposite of everything comes in... “Nothing”. I’m NOT saying that nothing will happen to unbelievers, but unbelievers will end up with nothing. Those who reject Christ as Lord and Savior will get nothing, the opposite of everything. Nothing means nothing! Can you mind imagine an eternity of nothing? This eternal nothing is not unconsciousness, but it is an existence of nothingness and there is no peace or rest in that nothingness. Jesus refers to it as outer darkness, a place of great suffering. It’s a place apart from the light, absent of the light. A great and horrible place of nothing.


Matthew 22:13 (NLT)

13 Then the king said to his aides, ‘Bind his hands and feet and throw him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’


Nothing and everything. Everything and nothing. Everything belongs to God and to those who belong to God on the last day. Nothing will belong to Satan and those who belong to Satan on the last day. There will be a glorious celebration in the place of everything and there will be weeping and teeth grinding in that place of nothing.


One more question...then why doesn’t everyone accept Christ by faith? Who would exchange everything for nothing? There is a deceiver and he has convinced people that they can have everything without the One that made everything. He is a liar and those who reject the Truth of Christ will fall for the lie of Satan. The one you believe will be the one you belong to on the last day. And everyone has a last day!


1 John 4:4-6 (NLT2)

4 But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.

5 Those people belong to this world, so they speak from the world’s viewpoint, and the world listens to them. 6 But we belong to God, and those who know God listen to us. If they do not belong to God, they do not listen to us. That is how we know if someone has the Spirit of truth or the spirit of deception.


Everything and Nothing. God has promised everything to those who will believe in the Son-Jesus. Don’t be left with nothing when you could have had everything.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about  "the name"

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Have you ever given much thought to God’s Name? He has! God commands that His Name be glorified, protected and honored among the nations. Yes, even among those who refuse to accept His Name as Truth. God makes this command clear by including it in the Ten Commandments.


Exodus 20:7 (NLT)

7 “You must not misuse the name of the LORD your God. The LORD will not let you go unpunished if you misuse his name.


God gave this command to the people of Israel as He was leading them out of Egyptian bondage and toward the Promised Land. Don’t misuse my name! But what does that really mean? God told them that punishment would come to those who violated this command. God then declares the serious consequences of this command:


Leviticus 24:15-16 (NLT)

15 Say to the people of Israel: Those who curse their God will be punished for their sin.

16 Anyone who blasphemes the Name of the LORD must be stoned to death by the whole community of Israel. Any native-born Israelite or foreigner among you who blasphemes the Name of the LORD must be put to death.


God declared the treatment of His Name to be a holy issue. There is punishment with misuse, but there is also a power associated with the proper treatment of His name. Notice the power of The Name as young David approached the Philistine giant named Goliath.


1 Samuel 17:45 (NLT)

45 David replied to the Philistine, “You come to me with sword, spear, and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the LORD of Heaven’s Armies—the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.


David carried The Name of the Lord into battle and a miraculous victory was the result. Notice this spiritual truth...some will die because of The Name and some will have overwhelming victory because of The Name. But there is one more side of The Name that I want to look at today. This side is not about how people respond to or treat The Name, but about how God himself will treat His Name.


Fast forward to the time of the Prophet Ezekiel. The people of Israel had misused and defiled The Name of the Lord among the nations. God had hoped that Israel would declare and reveal His glorious Name to the nations, but they did not. Instead they defiled it. I want you to notice God’s response to this. If Israel refused to bring glory to His Name, God was going to do it Himself.


Ezekiel 36:22-24 (NLT)

22 “Therefore, give the people of Israel this message from the Sovereign LORD: I am bringing you back, but not because you deserve it. I am doing it to protect my holy name, on which you brought shame while you were scattered among the nations.

23 I will show how holy my great name is—the name on which you brought shame among the nations. And when I reveal my holiness through you before their very eyes, says the Sovereign LORD, then the nations will know that I am the LORD.

24 For I will gather you up from all the nations and bring you home again to your land.


God was promising to one day regather and restore the nation of Israel to world prominence, not because they deserved such a wonderful act of mercy and grace. God was going to do it to reveal the glory of His Name to the nations. I believe we are now watching the fulfillment of God’s prophesy to Ezekiel. One way or the other, with Him or without Him...His Name will be glorified.


And now, in these final days, the church has been called and commissioned by God to reveal The Name of God to the whole world. We cannot shrink back from this divine calling of God. We fulfill this calling by revealing The Name of His Son, Jesus, to the whole world. We bring honor and glory to The Name of The Father by declaring the glory and The Name of His only begotten Son-Jesus.


John 17:1-5 (NLT)

1 After saying all these things, Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son so he can give glory back to you.

2 For you have given him authority over everyone. He gives eternal life to each one you have given him. 3 And this is the way to have eternal life—to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the one you sent to earth. 4 I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. 5 Now, Father, bring me into the glory we shared before the world began.


I pray today that we all accept this divine calling of God to reveal the power and glory of The Name-Jesus. How could we be ashamed of The Name that has rescued us from sin and death? How could we be afraid to say The Name that is above all other names? How could we deny the Only Name under heaven that saves us from death and hell?


Mark 8:38 (NLT)

38 If anyone is ashamed of me and my message in these adulterous and sinful days, the Son of Man will be ashamed of that person when he returns in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”


Yes, it is a command and yes, there are consequences for those who refuse to bring honor to The Name. May The Name of the Lord be praised forever and ever.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about envy and the ending

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Have you ever wondered why? Why do the godless prosper? Why does evil continue to increase? Why does injustice seem to win over justice? Do you ever wonder why? Have you ever watched the rich and powerful mock God and His Holy Word and wonder...why? I admit that sometimes I wonder why. Why does God allow them to continue in evil? Why does God allow the proud and arrogant to blaspheme His name, His Word and His people? Yes, sometimes I wonder why.


I think this “wondering why” moment is common to all who call on the Name of the Lord. I think we’ve been wondering about this since the beginning of time. Wondering why, in itself, is not a problem. We are called by God to seek justice and we wonder why justice has not yet come for those who mock our God. Wondering why seems quite normal, but there is a danger in the midst of this “wondering why” moment. There is a slippery path in this “wondering why” time of life. The slippery path is when your “wondering why” turns to envy...envy of the success of the wicked.


I was reading Psalm 73 this morning and it became clear that this human condition is not a new one. The psalmist declares his “wondering why” moment and his conclusion. I want to encourage all of you to read carefully this short Psalm and reflect on the Truth of our “wondering why” moments and how they will all turn out. I’ve labeled this, “Envy and the Ending”.


Psalm 73:1-28 (NLT)

1 Truly God is good to Israel, to those whose hearts are pure.

2 But as for me, I almost lost my footing. My feet were slipping, and I was almost gone.

3 For I envied the proud when I saw them prosper despite their wickedness.

4 They seem to live such painless lives; their bodies are so healthy and strong.

5 They don’t have troubles like other people; they’re not plagued with problems like everyone else.

6 They wear pride like a jeweled necklace and clothe themselves with cruelty.

7 These fat cats have everything their hearts could ever wish for!

8 They scoff and speak only evil; in their pride they seek to crush others.

9 They boast against the very heavens, and their words strut throughout the earth.

10 And so the people are dismayed and confused, drinking in all their words.

11 “What does God know?” they ask. “Does the Most High even know what’s happening?”

12 Look at these wicked people— enjoying a life of ease while their riches multiply.

13 Did I keep my heart pure for nothing? Did I keep myself innocent for no reason?

14 I get nothing but trouble all day long; every morning brings me pain.

15 If I had really spoken this way to others, I would have been a traitor to your people.

16 So I tried to understand why the wicked prosper. But what a difficult task it is!

17 Then I went into your sanctuary, O God, and I finally understood the destiny of the wicked.

18 Truly, you put them on a slippery path and send them sliding over the cliff to destruction.

19 In an instant they are destroyed, completely swept away by terrors.

20 When you arise, O Lord, you will laugh at their silly ideas as a person laughs at dreams in the morning.

21 Then I realized that my heart was bitter, and I was all torn up inside.

22 I was so foolish and ignorant— I must have seemed like a senseless animal to you.

23 Yet I still belong to you; you hold my right hand.

24 You guide me with your counsel, leading me to a glorious destiny.

25 Whom have I in heaven but you? I desire you more than anything on earth.

26 My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever.

27 Those who desert him will perish, for you destroy those who abandon you.

28 But as for me, how good it is to be near God! I have made the Sovereign LORD my shelter, and I will tell everyone about the wonderful things you do.


Never forget about “The Last Day”, for everyone has a last day!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about encouraging evil

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

I’ve noticed an interesting spiritual phenomena recently...the idea that the church should play a neutral role in society. We get very uncomfortable when people call us haters and narrow minded. I’ve noticed that many church people don’t want to openly talk about the absolute truths of the Holy Scriptures for fear that it might offend unbelievers. Can the church be neutral? Is it even possible for a Holy Spirit follower of Jesus to be neutral? Think about that question for a moment? Let’s ask Jesus on this one?


Matthew 12:30 (NLT)

30 “Anyone who isn’t with me opposes me, and anyone who isn’t working with me is actually working against me.


The spiritual war between heaven and hell has no neutral! We are with Christ or we are against Christ. We are opposing evil, or we are encouraging evil. Yes, the idea of neutrality actually encourages evil. There is no neutral. God gave this charge to the Prophet Jeremiah in the Old Testament before He brought judgment upon the Israel and Judah. The prophets in Judah also had the idea they could be spiritually neutral, and God compared them to the wickedness of Sodom and Gomorrah.


Jeremiah 23:13-14 (NLT)

13 “I saw that the prophets of Samaria were terribly evil, for they prophesied in the name of Baal and led my people of Israel into sin.

14 But now I see that the prophets of Jerusalem are even worse! They commit adultery and love dishonesty. They encourage those who are doing evil so that no one turns away from their sins. These prophets are as wicked as the people of Sodom and Gomorrah once were.”


There is no neutrality in this spiritual war. To go along with evil is to encourage others to go along with evil as well. To be silent regarding evil is not neutral or loving...it is the same as encouraging others to join in the evil.


Jesus said the church was called to be the light of the world...we would stand in direct opposition to the evil darkness. There is no neutrality in our light of the world calling. The church is called to be the city on a hill that sends its light into the darkness....there is no neutrality in this city on the hill.


Matthew 5:14-16 (NLT)

14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.

15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.

16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.


Notice the charge of God through Jeremiah one more time...They encourage those who are doing evil so that no one turns away from their sins. These prophets are as wicked as the people of Sodom and Gomorrah once were.” Do we really need to clarify the wicked sin of Sodom and Gomorrah, really? If the church hides its light and truth under a basket...the people in the dark will never come to repentance and praise our heavenly Father. If the church dims down the truth and light of the city on the hill, so that the darkness doesn’t complain...they will never come to repentance and praise of our heavenly Father. It is that Light and Truth that separates us from the dark world. The Light and the Truth is Jesus Christ and He is not neutral.


There is no neutral in this spiritual war. Neutrality is a lie of Satan. Jesus is the Truth and He tells the truth about the lie of spiritual neutrality.


Luke 11:23 (NIV)

23 "He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me, scatters.


Everyone must choose sides in this spiritual war. We will all belong to someone on the last day...everyone chooses. There is a great gulf separating these two sides and no one is neutral. You will belong to the one you stand with and no one will stand neutral on the last day.


John 8:47 (NLT)

47 Anyone who belongs to God listens gladly to the words of God. But you don’t listen because you don’t belong to God.”


Today, I challenge the church to take your stand on the Word of God and don’t let go. We must call evil what it is...sin against the holiness of God. First, we must confess and repent of any evil/sin in our lives. Each of us must be in the pursuit of holiness day by day. Then and only then can we shine the Light and Truth onto the darkness around us.


If we treat sin as meaningless, we are actually encouraging evil. Yes, there will be opposition and maybe persecution, but God has promised that anyone who endures and stands “with Him” till the end will be saved. No one will be neutral on that last day.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about tolerance

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Something in the news caught my attentions this past week. One of my favorite NFL quarterbacks, Drew Brees, was being attacked for associating himself with the Christian organization, Focus on the Family. My wife and I both feel like James Dobson and Focus on the Family helped us raise our three children. We have been blessed by Dr. Dobson and his wonderful organization for many years. I knew that Drew Brees was a confessing Christian and I knew that Focus on the Family was a Christian organization...so how could this association possibly be controversial? I started reading the details and soon began to understand the real issue. The issue of “tolerance”.


Focus on the Family is a Bible based Christian organization and because they are Bible based, they submit to the authority of Scripture as the very Word of God. Drew Brees joined with Focus on the Family to promote an upcoming nation-wide event called “Bring your Bible to School Day”. Think about that for a moment...Bring your Bible to school day. Is that the controversy? No, that was not the attack issue. The attack issue was Drew Brees’ association with Focus on the Family. Why? Because Focus on the Family has taken a Biblical position against gay marriage and homosexuality as sinful in the eyes of God. This Biblical position has brought the outrage of the LBGTQ community against Focus on the Family and to anyone who would dare associate themselves with them.


Drew Brees’ promotional video for “Bring your Bible to School Day” never mentions a single LBGTQ issue. So why attack Drew Brees? Drew Brees was attacked because of his association with a group that believes the Bible to be the literal the Word of God and takes its stand based on that Word. There are millions of Americans that believe the Bible to be the literal Word of God. I’m one of those who believes the Bible to be the very Word of God. I’m one of those who lives, as much as possible, in submission to the authority of the Holy Scriptures as the standard of absolute truth and authority. Does that mean people can’t associate with me? What is tolerance anyway? Is tolerance directional (only flows one way)?


Now for the real issue of tolerance. Tolerance...the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with.


Tolerance does not mean you accept the other person’s opinion as truth. Tolerance simply means you will agree to disagree peacefully on a certain issue. Is tolerance directional? Tolerance doesn’t mean you have to go along with another person’s opinion, just that you will respect that person and their opinion and try to live in peace...even if we disagree on the issue of truth. Christians believe Scripture (the Bible) to be the revelation of God’s truth...for example:


1 Corinthians 6:9-11 (NIV)

9 Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders

10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.


What about Biblical tolerance? Is our society reaching a point where it will no longer tolerate the Bible and anyone who dares to accept it as truth? The Bible says that the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of God. The Bible then lists these unrighteous acts as sexual sin (fornication), idol worshipping, adulterers, male prostitutes, homosexuals, thieves, greedy people, drunkards, slanderers and cheaters/swindlers...none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-12). The Bible also teaches us that all confessing Christians should repent of these sins (all of them) and turn to God and seek forgiveness through the blood of Christ, our Lord. We are then commanded to go and spread the Truth, even if people don’t accept the it...we must share it.


Christians don’t force their beliefs on others, we share the truth of the Scriptures in love and with respect. We then allow others to believe as they choose to believe...tolerance. Either way, we tolerate their choice. Each person is free to choose to accept the truth of the Bible or to reject it. We leave the rest to God.


1 Peter 3:13-17 (NIV)

13 Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good?

14 But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. "Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened."

15 But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,

16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.

17 It is better, if it is God's will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.


Let’s say that millions of Christian young people actually take their Bibles to school on that given day and let’s say they actually open it up and read it out loud at school that day. What will happen if they open up their Bible to 1 Corinthians 6:9-12? What will happen to tolerance that day? Should people no longer associate themselves with that school? What is this new tolerance anyway? How much longer will this society tolerate the Bible and those who accept it as truth?


Is this issue really about Drew Brees? Is this issue really about Focus on the Family? Or is this issue really with the Bible and Biblical Tolerance? I’ve concluded the latter. If Focus on the Family would stop using the Bible, it would be OK for Drew Brees to associate himself with them. Well, wait a minute...that would do away with the whole “Bring your Bible to School Day” wouldn’t it?


Let’s face it, the day of the Lord’s return must be getting near. Jesus warned us that anyone who stands on the authority of the Word of God will face great opposition and even persecution. There will be no Biblical tolerance, only hatred. But I close today with these Words from Jesus Christ, the One who was and is and is to come. His Words are True and Trustworthy!


Luke 9:23-26 (NIV)

23 Then he [Jesus} said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.

24 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it.

25 What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?

26 If anyone is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A Word from terry

about spiritual growth

tuesday, September 2, 2019

I’ve noticed that all creation reveals a common thread...If you’re not growing, you’re dying. When things stop growing, they begin to decay and eventually die. We’ve seen this in the Ash trees in our area. The Ash trees are dying by drying out, because the borers (insect) cut off the vessels that carry moisture out to the branches. The trees look alive, for a while, but they are all slowly dying.


People are the same. If you’re not growing, you’re dying. I’ve read that our skin cells (epidermis) rejuvenate and replace themselves every two to four weeks. Our hair (natural fuzz) has a lifespan of 6 years for women and 3 years for men. This regeneration/growth of the human body might slow as we grow older, but this growth process doesn’t stop until we die.


This is also true for our spiritual life. If we’re not growing, we’re dying. Let’s begin with the truth...We are all dying until we are born again in Christ. We may look alive, just like an Ash tree with green leaves that has been infected by an insect, but decay has started, and death is coming.


1 Corinthians 15:22 (NLT)

22 Just as everyone dies because we all belong to Adam, everyone who belongs to Christ will be given new life.


New Life...Jesus calls it living water, life water. The Ash Bore cuts off the water of the tree and it slowly begins to die. Sin does the same thing, except we are born with this condition, yes everyone that is from Adam is born with this sickness that leads to certain death. The Gospel reveals that everyone who belongs to Christ is given a new life... “living water” will flow from Christ into our lives.


John 7:37-39 (NLT)

37 On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “Anyone who is thirsty may come to me!

38 Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’”

39 (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.)


The Holy Spirit is living water. The Holy Spirit is Christ in us! We will die without this living water. Why? Because you cannot grow...you have been severed, cut off, from the source of life itself. And if you cannot grow, you will die. We must be born again by the water and Spirit or we will certainly die.


John 3:5-6 (NLT)

5 Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. 6 Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life.


Now, to my main point...when should a Christian stop growing? What happens when a believer stops growing? What happens to a person who receives the Word of Truth, but never grows beyond that moment? I don’t have to guess; Jesus reveals the answer Himself.


Luke 8:14 (NLT)

14 The seeds that fell among the thorns represent those who hear the message, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the cares and riches and pleasures of this life. And so they never grow into maturity.


Jesus describes a people group that receives the Word of Truth, but the message/Word of God is crowded out by the desires of this world...they never grow to maturity. The seed is never allowed to mature and produce fruit. The seed is God’s Word and we must grow in the knowledge and understanding of that Word. Jesus describes the life that grows/matures (next verse), the life that grows in the born-again power and authority of the Holy Spirit.


Luke 8:15 (NLT)

15 And the seeds that fell on the good soil represent honest, good-hearted people who hear God’s word, cling to it, and patiently produce a huge harvest.


The seed is the Word and the Word is perfect. We are called to grow in maturity of the Word. That seed, when allowed to mature will produce a great harvest for our Lord. We must devote ourselves to spiritual growth. If we’re not growing, we’re dying.


NCC is starting our fall semester of Roots tomorrow night at 6:30. We will offer 12 weeks of multiple Bible study choices to help people grow in the knowledge of God’s perfect Word. I invite each of you to come and grow with us. Put down deep “Roots”. You can join a large group study of 1st and 2nd Timothy in the NCC Worship Center or one of the small groups meeting throughout the NCC campus on Wednesday nights. You can click on this link for more details and to register for a class.


https://www.ninevahchristian.org/connect/wednesday-night-studies


Remember, if you’re not growing, you’re dying.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the road with no more

off-ramps

monday, August 26, 2019

Have you ever driven a car through Kansas or one of those sparsely populated states out west? Those states post signs on their highways that tell you how far it is to the next exit, so that you don’t run out of gas waiting for the exit that never arrives.


I use that highway scene to describe a Word from our Lord in the Revelation. There is a passage in the final chapter of Revelation that has always concerned me. I find it to be a somewhat mysterious and troubling message. I briefly mentioned it in my message yesterday and today I would like to take it a little deeper. I call it the road with no more off ramps.


The angel has just told the Apostle John to NOT seal up these words, because the time is near. Then comes this mysterious, troubling word:


Revelation 22:11 (NIV)

11 Let him who does wrong continue to do wrong; let him who is vile continue to be vile; let him who does right continue to do right; and let him who is holy continue to be holy."


That verse looks like a description of a road with no more off-ramps. Some are traveling toward God and others are traveling away from God. This verse describes a time when things are seemingly locked into place and people will continue in the direction that they had previously chosen, without any further chance of turning around...taking an exit.


Is there a point of no return? Is there a time when it’s too late to turn around, too late to exit the path that had previously been chosen? How late is too late?


Jesus tells us that the Kingdom of Heaven will have very early risers, 9:00 AM people, noon people, 3:00 PM people and even 5:00 PM people. This describes people who join the work of God’s Kingdom at different stages of their life.


Matthew 20:1-7 (NLT)

1 “For the Kingdom of Heaven is like the landowner who went out early one morning to hire workers for his vineyard.

2 He agreed to pay the normal daily wage and sent them out to work.

3 “At nine o’clock in the morning he was passing through the marketplace and saw some people standing around doing nothing.

4 So he hired them, telling them he would pay them whatever was right at the end of the day.

5 So they went to work in the vineyard. At noon and again at three o’clock he did the same thing.

6 “At five o’clock that afternoon he was in town again and saw some more people standing around. He asked them, ‘Why haven’t you been working today?’

7 “They replied, ‘Because no one hired us.’ “The landowner told them, ‘Then go out and join the others in my vineyard.’


Some came to work in the vineyard early, and some quite late, but is it ever too late to go to work in the vineyard? Notice what happens at the end of that workday in Jesus’ story.


Matthew 20:8-15 (NLT)

8 “That evening he told the foreman to call the workers in and pay them, beginning with the last workers first.

9 When those hired at five o’clock were paid, each received a full day’s wage.

10 When those hired first came to get their pay, they assumed they would receive more. But they, too, were paid a day’s wage.

11 When they received their pay, they protested to the owner,

12 ‘Those people worked only one hour, and yet you’ve paid them just as much as you paid us who worked all day in the scorching heat.’

13 “He answered one of them, ‘Friend, I haven’t been unfair! Didn’t you agree to work all day for the usual wage?

14 Take your money and go. I wanted to pay this last worker the same as you.

15 Is it against the law for me to do what I want with my money? Should you be jealous because I am kind to others?’


Let’s assume that 6:00 PM was quitting time in Jesus’ kingdom story. The workers who worked one hour received the same paycheck as those who worked all day. The late comers were welcomed and well paid, even though they were late.


But that’s not my real question today. Is it ever too late? Is there a place on the road with no more off ramps? Is there a point on life’s road where it’s no longer possible to turn around and change directions regarding the kingdom?


The Apostle Paul describes a road with no more exits...no more chance to change course, turn around and face God. This road describes God’s abandonment and this road has no more off-ramps.


Romans 1:21-25 (NLT)

21 Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused.

22 Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools.

23 And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies.

25 They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.


I freely admit that I don’t know where this point of no return (abandonment) is, but God does. I don’t know when a person passes that last exit as they walk away from God, but God does. But I can tell you what I do know...Today is the day of salvation. Today, there is still time to turn around (repent) and face God. Stop walking away from Him and turn around and face Him. As of today, that off-ramp is still there. As of today, the ability to turn around and face God and believe Him is in your windshield, not your rearview mirror. God has posted this sign (see below Scripture) on our highway of life and I advise everyone, I beg everyone to read it carefully today.


2 Corinthians 6:1-2 (NLT)

1 As God’s partners, we beg you not to accept this marvelous gift of God’s kindness and then ignore it.

2 For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation.


Be very careful to not pass that last exit...the last chance to turn around and face God. Don’t run out of gas, waiting for the exit that never arrives.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the assembly

tuesday, august 13, 2019

Statistically speaking, the average American church goer attends services less than 50% of the time. That percentage has been steadily declining, and one might wonder why? At the same time, I keep hearing people tell me that they don’t really need to attend church services (the assembly of believers) because they are fully able to worship at home or on the lake or wherever. That brings up my question for today. Is the assembly of believers important? Does God look at the assembly differently than the lone worshipper?


What does the Bible say about the assembly of believers? Do we need to get together? Do we need each other? Can the body of Christ, the Church, operate just as well independently as it can as a group?


Hebrews 10:25 (NLT)

25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.


The Hebrew writer specifically tells the church to NOT neglect the assembly of believers. Do you know why? Do you know the context and the application of that one verse? That verse comes from Hebrews chapter 10 where the writer is describing how hard it will be to remain in Christ in the last days. People are going to need the encouragement and strength of fellow believers as we get closer and closer to the return of Christ. I want you to read the context and application of this particular verse that warns believers about skipping out on the assembly.


Hebrews 10:23-24 (NLT)

23 Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. 24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.


Do you think you can do verses 23-24 better alone or in a group? It’s really hard to motivate one another when there isn’t anyone around you, except you. The assembly has a way of taking a person’s attention off of self and onto others. One person in the assembly may be doing well, while the other person in the assembly is struggling to hang on. This is one of the important purposes of the assembly...to encourage and strengthen each other.


That first century church was struggling to hang onto their faith in the midst of great suffering. They needed each other! We too are going to need each other more and more as we see the day of our Lord’s return approaching. Notice the context again...same chapter:


Hebrews 10:32-34 (NLT)

32 Think back on those early days when you first learned about Christ. Remember how you remained faithful even though it meant terrible suffering.

33 Sometimes you were exposed to public ridicule and were beaten, and sometimes you helped others who were suffering the same things.

34 You suffered along with those who were thrown into jail, and when all you owned was taken from you, you accepted it with joy. You knew there were better things waiting for you that will last forever.


This is my point...you may not necessarily need anyone in the assembly right now, but one day you will. The assembly is important for many reasons. It gives us a chance to join in one voice and lift the praises of our Lord. There is power in corporate worship. The Holy Spirit operates in power when the Body of Christ assembles. The people are strengthened and encouraged when the church comes together to worship, study the Scriptures and pray. Don’t wait until you’re desperate for the assembly to attend the assembly. You need the assembly now, even if you don’t realize it now. And you will need the assembly more and more as we see The Day approaching.


And by the way, if you really don’t want to be around other believers, you’re going to hate heaven!


Hebrews 12:22-24 (NLT)

22 No, you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to countless thousands of angels in a joyful gathering.

23 You have come to the assembly of God’s firstborn children, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God himself, who is the judge over all things. You have come to the spirits of the righteous ones in heaven who have now been made perfect.

24 You have come to Jesus, the one who mediates the new covenant between God and people, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks of forgiveness instead of crying out for vengeance like the blood of Abel.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen



Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the raised-up people

Most Christians think of the resurrection as a “last day” event, and it is an event that is coming on “last day”. Jesus’s conversation with Martha, the sister of Lazarus also reveals that last day event.


John 11:23-24 (NIV) 

23 Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again."

24 Martha answered, "I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day."


Martha knew about the rising of the last day, but she didn’t fully understand the life of “The raised-up people”. Yes, there will be a last day rising when God will give eternal and immortal flesh to those who have been redeemed by the blood of Christ.


1 Corinthians 15:50-54 (NIV)

50 I declare to you, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.

51 Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed--

52 in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.

53 For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.

54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: "Death has been swallowed up in victory."


The last trumpet on the last day will bring a rising/resurrection into immortal and eternal flesh. This rising into eternal flesh will happen to the dead in Christ (those believers who have gone to the grave) and the alive in Christ (those who are still alive at His coming). I look forward to that last day rising, but there is another part to this story. What do we do while we wait for that last day rising?


The Word of God proclaims that all the redeemed of Christ have become a “Raised-Up People”. Do you know what that means? Yes, we will be a raised-up people on the last day, but what about until then? What about before that day? What about now?


The wonderful secret is this...you have already been raised with Christ when you were born again. You’re just waiting for the eternal body that will be given on the last day. Yes, you have already been “raised with Christ”. You already have eternal life living inside you, the Holy Spirit. You’re just waiting for the new body that God will put you in. The Apostle Paul tells us that we who have been redeemed by Christ are a “RAISED-UP PEOPLE”. This is not just a future event, but a present reality.


Colossians 3:1-4 (NIV)

1 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.

2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.

3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.

4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.


Notice what these “raised-up people” do. They don’t live their lives with their focus only on this world, but their focus, purpose and meaning are on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.


Rejoice today, you “raised up people”. You have already been raised with Christ. Don’t let the temporary things of this life take your mind off the eternal things that are yours through Christ our Lord.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

A word from terry

about my shepherd

I memorized the 23rd Psalm as a child, but I never realized the revealing and personal power of this Psalm until I was an adult. This Psalm was written by King David and it reveals an eternal spiritual truth that has application for all believers. David begins this Psalm with, “The Lord is my shepherd”. He doesn’t say the Lord is “a shepherd or the shepherd”. He is MY Shepherd. David isn’t writing this beautiful Psalm about someone else’s shepherd. This psalm is personal, and this psalm reveals the blessings of the Lord for His sheep. David’s wonderful Psalm reveals what happens when the Lord becomes MY Shepherd. Do you see it? When you become a follower of Christ, everything in this Psalm now has personal application.


1. I am a sheep that no longer experiences want or insufficiency.

2. I am a sheep that lives daily inside a green and fertile pasture.

3. I am a sheep that dwells near and drinks from still, clean waters.

4. I am a sheep with a quiet, peaceful and restored soul.

5. I am a sheep that walks on the right path because I follow a Righteous Shepherd.

6. I am a sheep that does not fear or panic in the valley of the shadows of uncertainty, even unto death.

7. I am a sheep that fears no evil person or power because my Shepherd is always near.

8. I am a sheep that rests quietly at the peace filled table of sufficiency even when there are enemies all around me.

9. I am a sheep that has been chosen and anointed...and my cup/life overflows with gladness.


King David reveals 9 personal blessings that belong to the sheep when the Shepherd becomes MY Shepherd. But there is one more word that seals the promise of the Good Shepherd to His faithful sheep. The word is “surely”. I love the ending of the 23rd Psalm...it begins with surely.


The proclamation at the beginning of the Psalm (The Lord is my shepherd) unlocks the promise of the ending of the Psalm (Surely goodness and mercy will follow me...). When this Psalm becomes personal, this Psalm becomes powerful!


Psalm 23:1-6 (NIV)

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.

2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters,

3 he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.

6 Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.


Today, I stand with King David and proclaim, by faith, this statement. THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD! Jesus is mine and because He is mine, I can proclaim every blessing of Jesus Christ, as mine as well. These blessings are not based on our circumstances or environment, but on the promises of God.


Surely, goodness, mercy and love will follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. This blessing is not just for the life to come, but all days, as we await the last one. Go ahead, try to top that one!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about "too Late"

I’m often discouraged and frustrated by the lack of spiritual urgency in our culture. Yes, even in the church. Most normal people see the deterioration of all biblical morality and yet there is still a lack of urgency regarding spiritual matters. Even the godless entertainment industry is portraying horrifying apocalyptic views regarding our current world, but still there is no spiritual urgency. I get the feeling that people have this idea that there will always be time to turn around and come back to God. Will there always be time to turn around? Is it ever too late to repent and turn to God? The Bible warns that “today” is the day of salvation. Now is the appropriate time to deal with our relationship with God, not later.


The Apostle Paul must have felt the same sense of frustration in the first century. Notice his urgent warning about this topic to the church at Corinth.


2 Corinthians 6:1-2 (NLT)

1 As God’s partners, we beg you not to accept this marvelous gift of God’s kindness and then ignore it. 2 For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation.


The right time to deal with God and sin and life and death is right now, today. Salvation should be our first priority, not our last cry. What is it that makes people think that I can deal with this salvation issue later? The clock is always ticking, and our time is always running out...so why wait? Our sins are an urgent issue before our Holy God. Our salvation is an urgent issue of life and death, heaven and hell. Yes, there is a time in which it will be too late to turn around.


Romans 13:11-12 (NLT)

11 This is all the more urgent, for you know how late it is; time is running out. Wake up, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.

12 The night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. So remove your dark deeds like dirty clothes, and put on the shining armor of right living.


The very last chapter of the Book of Revelations seems to give one last warning about being too late. Many see it (verse 11) as a mysterious verse, but I think it is simply a warning that each of us will face a time when it is too late to change course. I ask you to read these Revelation verses below and carefully consider your position before God. Are your sins forgiven? Have you been born again, born of the water and the Spirit? Have you made peace with God through the life changing power of Christ? Does the Holy Spirit reign in power and authority in your life today, right now?


Revelation 22:10-11 (NLT)

10 Then he instructed me, “Do not seal up the prophetic words in this book, for the time is near.

11 Let the one who is doing harm continue to do harm; let the one who is vile continue to be vile; let the one who is righteous continue to live righteously; let the one who is holy continue to be holy.”


There is a time when those who do harm will pass the point of no return. It will be too late to turn around. There is a time when the vile will be unable to turn around and face God to receive forgiveness of their sins. It will be too late.


But notice the other position. There is also a time when the righteous and the holy will be sealed and finalized at the point of no return. This Revelation Scripture describes two groups of people heading in two opposite directions. One group is walking away from God because they have chosen to turn their back on God and the Truth, which is Christ. The other group is walking toward God, facing Him and the Truth, living under the power and authority of the Holy Spirit. Both groups will one day experience a point of no return. A place in which it is too late to alter their eternal destination.


I pray that all of us would live our lives with this sense of urgency and purpose. First, we must make peace with God through the blood of Christ. Secondly, we must be the light of the world that Jesus talks about...a light that warns those walking into the darkness, to turn around before it is “too late”.


And by the way, the next verse in Revelation records these words from our Lord Jesus:


Revelation 22:12-13 (NLT)

12 “Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

 

A word from terry

about imitators

There is an old saying that, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery”. Imitation is flattering because it says that you want to be like the one you imitate. That brings me to today’s word. The Apostle Paul gives clear instruction to the Church at Ephesus and the Church of today. This instruction is for our well being and safety. This instruction is clear and concise, but this instruction will also cause many to become uncomfortable and perhaps angry.


Ephesians 5:1-2 (NLT)

1 Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children.

2 Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.


It is quite reasonable that children will want to imitate their father. The true children of God will also take up this practice of imitating their Heavenly Father. We can see the attributes of God the Father by knowing the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, the Son. We imitate God by walking as Jesus walked and living under the authority and teachings of Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit.


Remember, this is the practice of the true children of God...to imitate their Heavenly Father. But, what about those who have never accepted Christ as Lord and Savior? What about those who have never become children of God, through Christ? Who will they imitate...who will be their pattern and the recipient of their great flattery?


The answer to that question would seem harsh, had it not come from Jesus himself. Jesus reveals the other option to imitators...another one that can be flattered by becoming imitators of his ways:


John 8:38-41 (NLT)

38 I am telling you what I saw when I was with my Father. But you are following the advice of your father.”

39 “Our father is Abraham!” they declared. “No,” Jesus replied, “for if you were really the children of Abraham, you would follow his example.

40 Instead, you are trying to kill me because I told you the truth, which I heard from God. Abraham never did such a thing.

41 No, you are imitating your real father.” They replied, “We aren’t illegitimate children! God himself is our true Father.”


I want you to notice the incredible difference between these two sets of “imitators” from Paul’s teaching in Ephesians 5 and Jesus’ teaching in John 8. The imitators in these two scenes have two different fathers. Paul describes those who imitate God by living and walking as Jesus did. These imitators walk in the Truth of God’s Word. But Jesus describes another group of people that imitate a different father...by rejecting the Truth. But notice something here. These imitators believe they’re imitating and following the real God...they don’t know the real truth or the real Father. So, Jesus takes it even further...


John 8:42-45 (NLT)

42 Jesus told them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, because I have come to you from God. I am not here on my own, but he sent me.

43 Why can’t you understand what I am saying? It’s because you can’t even hear me!

44 For you are the children of your father the devil, and you love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer from the beginning. He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 So when I tell the truth, you just naturally don’t believe me!


Jesus makes it clear that loving God the Father would naturally bring a person into a life that “imitates” the Son. That life is based on Truth and not lies. Satan is a liar and those who imitate Satan do what Satan does...reject the Truth. In this act of defying the Truth...they become imitators of a different father...Satan.


Let me give you one specific example from Paul’s same teaching in Ephesians by putting it all in context. This teaching explains one of the ingredients of our modern-day culture war that is tearing many churches apart. Who will we imitate? What truth will we follow and what is the source of that truth...God or Satan?


Ephesians 5:1-14 (NLT)

1 Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children.

2 Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.

3 Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people.

4 Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God.

5 You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world.

6 Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the anger of God will fall on all who disobey him.

7 Don’t participate in the things these people do.

8 For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light!

9 For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true.

10 Carefully determine what pleases the Lord.

11 Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them.

12 It is shameful even to talk about the things that ungodly people do in secret.

13 But their evil intentions will be exposed when the light shines on them,

14 for the light makes everything visible. This is why it is said, “Awake, O sleeper, rise up from the dead, and Christ will give you light.”


My final word is this...be very careful which father you imitate for only One of them is Truth.


John 14:6-7 (NLT)

6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

7 If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is. From now on, you do know him and have seen him!”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

independence day

This Thursday our nation will celebrate our 243rd birthday, the day we declared our national independence. I’ve always been a patriot, even when I was a kid, I felt a respect for flag and country. By the time I got to high school the Vietnam War was in full swing and our nation was torn by whether or not it was a war worth fighting. Even in the midst of the rebellious Vietnam era I decided to join the US Army within two weeks of graduating high school. I volunteered for the draft that was still in full swing back in 1974. I never went to Vietnam, but I was called to work a huge Vietnamese refugee camp after the fall of Saigon in 1975. Today I still fly a flag on the front of my house and my love of country has never wavered.


Today, I give thanks for being an American. 62 years ago, I woke up in America. I didn’t plan my original arrival date or arrival destination, but I’m sure glad God did. God has blessed this nation beyond measure, and I stop and give Him thanks for the prosperity and blessings of the life I have lived as an American. But I must admit something at the same time...my heart is longing for a better country. As great as America has been, I long for a better country. Is that possible?


Yes, that’s possible and yes, that’s ok for an American to say that out loud. There is a better country waiting for us. We are currently citizens of what I believe to be the greatest country in human history, but I also believe there is a better country coming soon.


This is the hope of all of God’s children. From the time of Abraham until today...we have all lived with gratitude and thankfulness for the land that were born into but wait with anticipation for the glory land that is coming. It’s a Promised Land. Hebrews chapter eleven is known as the faith chapter and it lists the names of all the heroes of the faith that have gone before us. Chapter 11 describes the way my heart feels on this 4th of July week.


Hebrews 11:13-16 (NIV)

13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.

14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own.

15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return.

16 Instead, they were longing for a better country--a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.


This is my encouragement to all of you today. I suggest that you stop and thank God that you were born in America and/or that God has allowed you to live in this wonderful country. I encourage you to watch or listen to this song by Matt Maher that describes the wonder of waking up in America.


But then, after you thank God for the blessed country that we now live in... thank Him for the new country that will soon be ours through Jesus Christ out Lord. If you think this was grand...you ain’t seen nothing yet! Click the link below to watch the video


https://youtu.be/A_GCmtAUg0w



Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about the end

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

What would you do if you had only a few weeks to live? The modern world would tell us that we should empty out our bucket list by doing anything and everything we ever wanted to do before we stopped breathing. But, is that how God looks at The End of our life on earth? Does God give us any counsel regarding how to live our lives in the countdown to The End? The Apostle Peter gives us such counsel. People have been reading and living under Peter’s end of days counsel for some 2000 years now. I want you to notice the great contrast between this God-given instruction and the emptying out your bucket list ideology.


1 Peter 4:7-8 (NIV)

7 The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. 8 Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.


Self-controlled and prayerful vs. doing everything you ever wanted to do to please yourself. Do you see the opposing end of days thinking? God’s advice is to control your “self” and pray. The world’s advice is to let go of anything that would keep you from experiencing self-pleasure. Why is there such a difference between these two world views?


The world’s view and way of life leads one to believe that death is The End. God’s way of life leads us to believe that death is not The End. The gap between these two opposing world views is the Resurrection. Jesus’ resurrection changed everything, especially the way we view The End.


What if physical death is not The End? What if there is another world on the other side of death’s door? What if every person faces God on the other side? What if there really is a heaven and there really is a hell? What if every person will have to give an account of what they have done with that which they have received from God, when we get to the other side?


I’m not suggesting that we live a life that rejects all fun, pleasure and bucket lists, not at all. I am suggesting that we live each day prayerfully, clear minded and self-controlled with the understanding that The End of life as we know it will come, and we will all face God. King Solomon put it this way:


Ecclesiastes 11:9 (NLT)

9 Young people, it’s wonderful to be young! Enjoy every minute of it. Do everything you want to do; take it all in. But remember that you must give an account to God for everything you do.


The End of your life and The End of this world is not The End. Heaven’s Coming for those who call upon the name of the Lord. Jesus is coming for those who have called upon His Name. The End for believers is actually just the beginning of the beginning. Don’t waste your life trying to figure out how this counsel applies to others, just apply it to yourself and follow this standard... Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. We can each think carefully, soberly and with clear minds about this final truth today:


Romans 14:10-12 (NLT)

10 So why do you condemn another believer? Why do you look down on another believer? Remember, we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.

11 For the Scriptures say, “‘As surely as I live,’ says the LORD, ‘every knee will bend to me, and every tongue will confess and give praise to God.’”

12 Yes, each of us will give a personal account to God.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about getting even

It happens when we are small children. It happens even before we understand why it’s happening. We develop a sense of internal justice that wants to make things even or equal. As a child we look to our parents and say, “Make him give me that toy”. We want our parents to mediate and get things back to even, back to the right place. It comes from an internal sense of justice. As we grow older, we begin to rely on ourselves to get even, to make things right by inserting our own sense of justice.


Eventually, we come to a point of conflict regarding this internal sense of justice. At some point we realize that there is an authority greater than ourselves, greater than our parents and even greater than human governments. At some point we realize that there is a God in heaven that has His own sense of justice. This is when the conflict occurs. What happens when God’s sense of justice and getting even doesn’t line up with ours?


Let there be no doubt that God is the God of justice. He always makes things right in the end. He always gets even, and He is always right. Yes, there is a right and yes there is a wrong and yes God will always make things right in the end. So, what do we do with wrong in the meantime? How do we respond to wrong while we wait for God to make things right and even? God’s Word gives us clear instruction on this question.


Romans 12:17-19 (NLT)

17 Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable.

18 Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.

19 Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” says the LORD.


This does not mean that Christians should never correct a wrong or we never confront evil. It clearly means that more wrong won’t make things right. More darkness never makes thing lighter. Yes, the Church has been called to be the Light of the World. Yes, we must confront evil with the truth. Yes, we confront the darkness with the light, but we never confront evil with more evil. Our response to evil should never be based on our own internal sense of justice. We must leave the final judgment to God. We must not seek revenge or plan to get even. That is not our calling. We seek to live at peace with everyone, even those who despise us and our Lord.


Let’s be honest. Our personal sense of justice is not always trustworthy because we don’t always know the truth about everything. God knows the truth about everything and everyone and because He knows and is The Truth, His justice and judgment cannot be mocked or refuted.


Galatians 6:7-10 (NLT)

7 Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant. 8 Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. 9 So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. 10 Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.


My challenge to the church is this...do not grow weary or tired of doing the right thing before God and our neighbors. God sees all! God will make things even on the last day and His justice is perfect. In the meantime, as much as possible, live at peace with everyone. Walk in the light of Truth and leave the getting even to God. You’ll find peace and rest in knowing that God’s justice will be perfect on the last day.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

 

a word from terry

about the bread

Today, I would like to talk about “The Bread”. God told Moses and Aaron that there must be bread before Him at all times...the Bread of Presence. These 12 loaves of bread would be set out on a special table, just outside the Most Holy Place of the Tabernacle of God’s Presence. Notice God’s very specific instructions about The Bread of Presence:


Leviticus 24:5-9 (NLT)

5 “You must bake twelve loaves of bread from choice flour, using four quarts of flour for each loaf.

6 Place the bread before the LORD on the pure gold table, and arrange the loaves in two rows, with six loaves in each row.

7 Put some pure frankincense near each row to serve as a representative offering, a special gift presented to the LORD.

8 Every Sabbath day this bread must be laid out before the LORD. The bread is to be received from the people of Israel as a requirement of the eternal covenant.

9 The loaves of bread will belong to Aaron and his descendants, who must eat them in a sacred place, for they are most holy. It is the permanent right of the priests to claim this portion of the special gifts presented to the LORD.”


Why 12 loaves...one loaf for each of the 12 Tribes of Israel. The priest would make this bread each week on behalf of the 12 tribes. They would bring in 12 fresh loaves every Sabbath day to replace the 12 loaves that were then available for the priests to eat.


This is my question for today. Wouldn’t the bread be stale after being displayed before the Lord for 7 days? God required the bread to be eaten by the priests after it was removed from the table in the Holy Place. But was it still good to eat?


This is why it’s called The Bread of Presence. The Bread of Presence didn’t get stale. In fact, the bread was still warm, like it was fresh from the oven when the priests removed it on the seventh day. How is that possible? It’s as if “time stands still” in The Presence of God. Our God is eternal, and He is not subject to time and space like we are. His Presence defies time and The Bread of Presence also defied time. The Bread was not for God to eat, even though He required The Bread to be kept in His Presence for seven days. The Bread was for the priest to eat. Why?


The Bread was part of God’s covenant with His holy people. The Presence of God was going to provide spiritual and physical food, sustaining the life of the people chosen by God. The Bread of Presence represented this covenant promise of God.


Exodus 25:30 (NLT)

30 Place the Bread of the Presence on the table to remain before me at all times.


God’s told them to keep this Bread of Presence before Him continually....at all times. Do you see Jesus yet? This Tabernacle event was established some 1500 years before Jesus was born in Bethlehem, but it is revealing Jesus as “The Bread of Life-The Bread of Presence” The Bread that never gets cold or stale.


John 6:47-51 (NLT)

47 “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes has eternal life.

48 Yes, I am the bread of life!

49 Your ancestors ate manna in the wilderness, but they all died.

50 Anyone who eats the bread from heaven, however, will never die.

51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will live forever; and this bread, which I will offer so the world may live, is my flesh.”


The Tabernacle Bread of Presence never got cold or stale. It defied time. Then, Jesus comes and announces that anyone who believes that He is The Bread of Life will have eternal life, a life that defies time. You won’t have to be in the family line of Aaron to eat this new bread. All the Believers in Jesus will be allowed to enter this Holy Place of God’s Presence (or The Presence enters us) to find a forever life. Jesus then tells the people that The Bread of Life is His Flesh. We must eat The Bread of Presence, like the priests of old ate it. Can you see it yet? The Apostle Peter reveals (through the Holy Spirit) that Christians become priest in God’s kingdom. Priests that are able to eat The Bread of Presence, The Bread of Life.


1 Peter 2:5 (NLT)

5 And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God.


I want you to think about this the next time you take communion. By the mercy of God, we, the priests of God are eating the Bread of Presence. It does not grow cold and it does not get stale. It defies time because it represents our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The Bread of Presence, Bread of Life...Jesus Christ is our life and there is no life, no resurrection without Him.


John 6:53-58 (NLT)

53 So Jesus said again, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you.

54 But anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise that person at the last day.

55 For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink.

56 Anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.

57 I live because of the living Father who sent me; in the same way, anyone who feeds on me will live because of me.

58 I am the true bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will not die as your ancestors did (even though they ate the manna) but will live forever.”


Through Christ, God has given us these precious promises. Jesus is our spiritual and physical bread of life. Make sure you have eaten this Bread before the last day comes. Rejoice today in this great gift of salvation!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen.



Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about "I AM"

Who do you think you are? That question is usually not a nice one. It usually comes from a person who thinks you’re pretending to be someone you’re not. That is the question asked of Jesus by the religious leaders of his day, after Jesus proclaims His power over death.


John 8:52-53 (NLT)

52 The people said, “Now we know you are possessed by a demon. Even Abraham and the prophets died, but you say, ‘Anyone who obeys my teaching will never die!’

53 Are you greater than our father Abraham? He died, and so did the prophets. Who do you think you are?”


The people asked Jesus two questions. First, are you greater than Abraham? Secondly, who do you think you are? You need to understand that Abraham lived about 2000 years before Christ and everyone knew that Abraham died a physical death 2000 years before. The Jewish people revered Abraham, but they didn’t really know how to take Jesus and His claims of power over death itself. How will Jesus answer their two questions? Will they believe His answer? By the way, I absolutely love Jesus’ answer:


John 8:54-56 (NLT)

54 Jesus answered, “If I want glory for myself, it doesn’t count. But it is my Father who will glorify me. You say, ‘He is our God,’

55 but you don’t even know him. I know him. If I said otherwise, I would be as great a liar as you! But I do know him and obey him.

56 Your father Abraham rejoiced as he looked forward to my coming. He saw it and was glad.”


I call that a straight up answer. No political correctness, no dancing around the issue...a straight up answer from Jesus. Jesus is merely answering their question...who do you think you are? Jesus is revealing His true identity to them. He is the Son of God. He was before Abraham and He was with Abraham 2000 years before. Jesus even says that Abraham looked forward with joy to Jesus’ future coming into this world of men. Will they accept Jesus’ answer to their question? Have you?


John 8:57 (NLT)

57 The people said, “You aren’t even fifty years old. How can you say you have seen Abraham?”


There you go...that’s why they still don’t get it. They don’t believe the words of Jesus to be Truth. Jesus’ answer was not vague our unclear. It was very clear, but they rejected it. Jesus will respond to their unbelief with one of the most powerful sentences in the Scripture (my opinion only).


John 8:58 (NLT)

58 Jesus answered, I tell you the truth, before Abraham was even born, I AM!”


Two little words and just three letters in the English language. I AM! The answer to every question that will ever be asked on earth can be answered in two words, three letters. I AM! Do you believe Jesus is “I AM”? How could a 33-year-old man claim that He’s seen and talked to a man that died 2000 years before? The answer is two words and three letters, “I AM”. It’s hard to argue with “I AM”. I would suggest that you not argue with “I AM”, but believe Him.


And by the way, if you’re struggling with Jesus’ title of “I AM”, I bet you’re really struggling with Immanuel.


Matthew 1:22-23 (NLT)

22 All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet:

23 “Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’”


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen.


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about hearing aids

Did you know the Bible talks about hearing loss and hearing aids? Yes, I’m talking about a physical hearing loss that leads to a sickness of the soul that left untreated leads to certain death. Jesus talks about this hearing loss that leads to death.


Matthew 13:9 (NLT)

Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand.”


Doesn’t everyone have ears to hear, or are some people just hard of hearing...suffering from severe and dangerous hearing loss? Is this auditory sickness because people don’t listen or because they don’t understand, or both? Jesus links this hearing loss announcement to the question of why you speak in parables/stories.


Matthew 13:10-13 (NLT)

10 His disciples came and asked him, “Why do you use parables when you talk to the people?”

11 He replied, “You are permitted to understand the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven, but others are not.

12 To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given, and they will have an abundance of knowledge. But for those who are not listening, even what little understanding they have will be taken away from them.

13 That is why I use these parables, For they look, but they don’t really see. They hear, but they don’t really listen or understand.


Some will listen and understand the Words of God, but some will refuse to listen and because they don’t listen, they will not understand the Words of God. This particular hearing loss leads to death. Yes, I said it correctly. This particular hearing loss described by Jesus leads to certain death, eternal death. Jesus then quotes the prophet Isaiah regarding this deadly hearing loss.


Matthew 13:14-15 (NLT)

14 This fulfills the prophecy of Isaiah that says, ‘When you hear what I say, you will not understand. When you see what I do, you will not comprehend.

15 For the hearts of these people are hardened, and their ears cannot hear, and they have closed their eyes— so their eyes cannot see, and their ears cannot hear, and their hearts cannot understand, and they cannot turn to me and let me heal them.’


Hearing, receiving and understanding the Word of God brings the healing of Christ...the cure of death itself. It’s called faith! But some people refuse to listen, refuse to hear this message of truth and salvation. So, what is the role of a Christian believer in this age of severe and deadly hearing loss? What is the role of those who have been given ears that hear from our loving Father? We have been called to be the “hearing aids” for those who have suffered this deadly hearing loss. We are to amplify this Word of God that has set us free from sin and death. And by the way, this calling to be a hearing aid to the spiritually deaf is a blessing, not a curse.


Matthew 13:16-17 (NLT)

16 “But blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear.

17 I tell you the truth, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, but they didn’t see it. And they longed to hear what you hear, but they didn’t hear it.


Our ears have heard the good news of Jesus Christ. Our hearing has opened our hearts to God’s promise of eternal salvation through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Our hearing brought us saving faith and now we must tell others this good news. We must amplify that which we have received to those who do not yet have ears to hear.


Romans 10:14-18 (NLT)

14 But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?

15 And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!”

16 But not everyone welcomes the Good News, for Isaiah the prophet said, “LORD, who has believed our message?”

17 So faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ.

18 But I ask, have the people of Israel actually heard the message? Yes, they have: “The message has gone throughout the earth, and the words to all the world.”


Today, I praise God for the men that were my hearing aids when I was younger. Those men amplified that which they had received from our Lord. I praise God for those who taught and lived the Word of God even when I was in rebellion and very hard of hearing. Now, I praise God for this wonderful calling to become the hearing aid of those who do not even know that they are deaf and dying without Christ. Yes, some will never hear, but I don’t know which ones will and which one’s won’t listen. So, I will offer to be a hearing aid (to amplify the Word of Truth) for anyone and everyone who will listen to what the Spirit is saying in these last days.


Revelation 2:11 (NLT)

11 “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches. Whoever is victorious will not be harmed by the second death.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the blinding darkness

I read a story recently about Louis Tomososki who, at the age of 16 decided he could view the 1962 solar eclipse without any special glasses. Louis closed his left eye and used his right eye to look upon the solar eclipse for 20 seconds. That 20 seconds of intense light burned a hole in his retina. Louis is 73 years old now and has lived most of his life with blinding darkness in his right eye because of the light of the sun. Most of us can understand the dangers of looking into the intense light, but do you understand the danger of being blinded by the darkness? Is that possible? Can people be blinded by darkness?


The Apostle John speaks of such a blindness and this blindness is even more dangerous that being blinded by the light of the sun. This blindness has the potential to last forever, even into eternity. Forever blinding darkness.


1 John 2:9-11 (NLT2)

9 If anyone claims, “I am living in the light,” but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is still living in darkness.

10 Anyone who loves another brother or sister is living in the light and does not cause others to stumble.

11 But anyone who hates another brother or sister is still living and walking in darkness. Such a person does not know the way to go, having been blinded by the darkness.


This blinding darkness is called hate. This hate comes out of the darkness of Satan and overexposure to this darkness can cause permanent blindness. Yes, even forever blindness. There is only one cure from this hate filled blinding darkness...the Light of God’s Word. The Light reveals the darkness for what it truly is. The Light is the antidote to the blinding darkness.


2 Corinthians 4:3-4 (NLT2)

3 If the Good News we preach is hidden behind a veil, it is hidden only from people who are perishing.

4 Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God.


Let there be no doubt...Satan’s message is hate. Hate God and hate people. Hate, hate, hate! There is no love in the darkness, but there is only love in the Light. There is no God in the darkness and there is no Satan in the Light.


1 John 1:5-7 (NLT2)

5 This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. 6 So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. 7 But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.


There is a blinding darkness called hate. The is no fellowship in this blinding darkness, only hate. There is a cure for this blinding darkness. It’s called Light and Light has a name...JESUS!


John 9:4-5 (NLT2)

4 We must quickly carry out the tasks assigned us by the one who sent us. The night is coming, and then no one can work. 5 But while I am here in the world, I am the light of the world.”


The night is coming. The darkness is coming. Do it quickly, while you have a chance...look into the Light and you will see. Look into this Light and you will love, not hate. Look into this Light and you will live and never die. Turn from the blinding darkness so that you might see clearly...forever!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about surrender

Can surrender be a good thing? I know it doesn’t usually feel like a good thing. There is a story in the Old Testament Book of Jeremiah that reveals a surrender that leads to life. God had announced His coming judgment upon the city of Jerusalem because of their idolatry and shedding of innocent blood. God, who is rich in mercy and grace then offers a way for the people to survive the coming judgment. The judgment is coming, that part is unstoppable, but God offers a way to save their lives in the midst the coming judgment. The way to survive was “surrender”. God reveals this message to the Prophet Jeremiah and tells him to tell all the people...


Jeremiah 21:8-10 (NLT2)

8 “Tell all the people, ‘This is what the LORD says: Take your choice of life or death!

9 Everyone who stays in Jerusalem will die from war, famine, or disease, but those who go out and surrender to the Babylonians will live. Their reward will be life!

10 For I have decided to bring disaster and not good upon this city, says the LORD. It will be handed over to the king of Babylon, and he will reduce it to ashes.’


Surrender and live! Would that make any sense to the people of Jerusalem that lived behind the fortified walls of the city? Jerusalem seemed so safe, so secure. But God’s Word had spoken. God’s Word was clear. You must surrender or you will certainly die. You must obey the Word of God or you will surely die in the coming judgment.


Does any of this sound familiar? Does any of this have application for us today? Many people are living today like everything is secure and safe, no danger at all, even though God has warned all of us about the day of judgment that is going to come upon the whole world. Our current security and wealth is an illusion. It cannot save us from God’s coming judgment any more than the fortified walls of Jerusalem could save Israel from Babylon. God has warned all of us in this present time about a coming judgment.


James 5:1-3 (NLT2)

1 Look here, you rich people: Weep and groan with anguish because of all the terrible troubles ahead of you. 2 Your wealth is rotting away, and your fine clothes are moth-eaten rags.

3 Your gold and silver have become worthless. The very wealth you were counting on will eat away your flesh like fire. This treasure you have accumulated will stand as evidence against you on the day of judgment.


Jesus even gave this specific warning to the “church” in Laodicea:


Revelation 3:17 (NLT2)

17 You say, ‘I am rich. I have everything I want. I don’t need a thing!’ And you don’t realize that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked.


Today, there is only one way to survive the coming judgment of God. SURRENDER! The reward for surrender will be life. God doesn’t want us to surrender to the king of Babylon, that was only a shadow of the coming events of our time. God wants us to surrender to another King named Jesus Christ. Surrender to Him and live.


Mark 8:34-35 (NLT2)

34 Then, calling the crowd to join his disciples, he said, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me.

35 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it


God told Jeremiah...if you stay behind your walled fortress you will die in the coming judgment. But God’s grace and mercy gave the people of Israel a choice...you can come out, surrender and live. Today, our walled fortress is the life of self that lives to save our self. If we stay behind these fortified walls of “self” we will surely die in the coming judgment. But if we come out “and deny our self” and bow our lives before this King Jesus, we will live. God is rich in mercy and grace and it is His great desire that everyone would hear the Word of God and choose life by way of surrender.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

 

a word from terry

about more than enough

There is an interesting parallel between the Levite priests of the Old Testament and the New Testament Church. When Joshua led the 12 tribes of Israel into the Promised Land each tribe was given an allotment of land as an inheritance. The land was a gift from God, a promise of God. Every tribe received an allotment of land except one, the Levites (the priests).


Deuteronomy 18:1-2 (NLT)

1 “Remember that the Levitical priests—that is, the whole of the tribe of Levi—will receive no allotment of land among the other tribes in Israel. Instead, the priests and Levites will eat from the special gifts given to the LORD, for that is their share.

2 They will have no land of their own among the Israelites. The LORD himself is their special possession, just as he promised them.


The priests under the Old Testament didn’t get land as an inheritance. Their reward or inheritance was God’s portion, God’s provision. Do you think they were upset by that announcement or did they celebrate it? Do you know who holds the role of priests in the New Testament? The Church!


1 Peter 2:4-5 (NLT)

4 You are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God’s temple. He was rejected by people, but he was chosen by God for great honor.

5 And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God.


1 Peter 2:8-9 (NLT)

8 And, “He [Jesus] is the stone that makes people stumble, the rock that makes them fall.” They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them. 9 But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.


The Levites stood as priests between God and the people in the Old Testament and now the Church stands as royal/holy priests under the authority of our High Priest Jesus in our present world. God uses the priesthood to reveal His glory by showing others the goodness of God in the Old Testament and in the New Testament Church.


This is my question today. Is this gift of God to His royal priests “enough” to satisfy you. How much is enough? I am NOT saying that Christians shouldn’t buy or own land and I’m not trying to propose some legal condition here. I’m asking a question. How much is enough for you to be satisfied? The eleven tribes received lands, towns and villages, but the Levites got God. God specifically said, “I will be your inheritance”. Would that be enough for you?


Numbers 18:20-24 (NLT)

20 And the LORD said to Aaron, “You priests will receive no allotment of land or share of property among the people of Israel. I am your share and your allotment.


Do you think the Levites felt left out? Should they be angry, jealous or did they receive the most favorable inheritance of God? They were assigned the closest positions to the presence of God. Wouldn’t that be more valuable than land?

What is your allotment, your inheritance today? What are the promises that God has made to his chosen priests in the church age?


1 Peter 1:3-5 (NLT)

3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation,

4 and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay.

5 And through your faith, God is protecting you by his power until you receive this salvation, which is ready to be revealed on the last day for all to see.


Maybe we won’t be the richest people here one earth and maybe we won’t own the most land or property, but God has promised each of us a rich inheritance. He has promised us “HIMSELF”. The Holy Spirit is Christ in me! This is the essence of our priestly allotment. The presence of the Holy Spirit inside our human heart is as close as we can get while we wait for the physical return of our King Jesus.


Ephesians 1:12-14 (NLT)

12 God’s purpose was that we Jews who were the first to trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. 13 And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, he identified you as his own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom he promised long ago.

14 The Spirit is God’s guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify him.


Today, I encourage each of you to celebrate this great salvation and these wonderful promises of God guaranteed by the presence of the Holy Spirit. I can assure you of this...He is now and forever will be more than enough!


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry

about easter

This Sunday, churches around the world will celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the grave. Let’s face it, this is big news. When was the last time you saw someone come out of the grave or sit up in a coffin? Trust me, you would remember it.


Can anything be bigger than this? A man that has the power to overcome death and the grave. But there is also another perspective to this supernatural power over death.


Matthew 28:5-7 (NLT2)

5 Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified.

6 He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying.

7 And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there. Remember what I have told you.”


The angel made the announcement, the announcement that would change everything...forever. He is not here...He has risen from the dead. The angel said it twice...He has risen from the dead.


So, I have a question for everyone to think about during this Passion Week leading up to Easter Sunday. Actually, it’s two questions?


1. What if Jesus doesn’t rise from the dead?

2. What if you and I don’t rise from the dead?


The angelic announcement is that “He did”, but what if “He didn’t”? What if we don’t? Do you want the logical, common sense answer? Are you sure? If Jesus doesn’t rise from the dead, then we won’t...we will all remain in the place of the dead. Do you know about that place...the place of the dead?


Some call the place of the dead Sheol, Hades, the place of torment. Jesus talks about this place of the dead. Notice that Jesus asks the people of Capernaum if they think they are going to heaven. In other words, Jesus asked them...do you think you’re going to rise from the dead to be honored in heaven?


Matthew 11:23-24 (NLT2)

23 “And you people of Capernaum, will you be honored in heaven? No, you will go down to the place of the dead. For if the miracles I did for you had been done in wicked Sodom, it would still be here today. 24 I tell you, even Sodom will be better off on judgment day than you.”


Jesus spent much of his time preaching in and around Capernaum, but He announced that many in that town is not going to experience the resurrection. No, they will remain in, go down to the place of the dead.


This is my point today...the resurrection is the only way out of the place of the dead and Jesus is the only way to experience this resurrection! If there is no resurrection from the dead, then you remain in the place of the dead. Do you know about this place of the dead? Jesus makes it clear that God will not be in the place of the dead.


Matthew 22:31-32 (NLT2)

31 “But now, as to whether there will be a resurrection of the dead—haven’t you ever read about this in the Scriptures? Long after Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob had died, God said,

32 ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’ So he is the God of the living, not the dead.”


Do you understand why the Sunday morning angelic announcement is so big? Jesus was not there. The grave was empty. The place of the dead was empty. Jesus had just made a way for you and I to escape the place of the dead. Jesus’ resurrection from the grave, the place of the dead, became our resurrection from the place of the dead. That is...if you truly believe this stuff! Do you know the place of the dead is a place of great suffering and torment, not unconsciousness?


I know this might be an unusual Scripture reading for Passion Week, but I encourage each of you to carefully read this explanation of the two destinations of all mankind, recorded in Luke 16. I encourage you to read it carefully and consider the value of being raised from the dead!


Luke 16:19-31 (NLT2)

19 Jesus said, “There was a certain rich man who was splendidly clothed in purple and fine linen and who lived each day in luxury.

20 At his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus who was covered with sores.

21 As Lazarus lay there longing for scraps from the rich man’s table, the dogs would come and lick his open sores.

22 “Finally, the poor man died and was carried by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried,

23 and his soul went to the place of the dead. There, in torment, he saw Abraham in the far distance with Lazarus at his side.

24 “The rich man shouted, ‘Father Abraham, have some pity! Send Lazarus over here to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue. I am in anguish in these flames.’

25 “But Abraham said to him, ‘Son, remember that during your lifetime you had everything you wanted, and Lazarus had nothing. So now he is here being comforted, and you are in anguish.

26 And besides, there is a great chasm separating us. No one can cross over to you from here, and no one can cross over to us from there.’

27 “Then the rich man said, ‘Please, Father Abraham, at least send him to my father’s home.

28 For I have five brothers, and I want him to warn them so they don’t end up in this place of torment.’

29 “But Abraham said, ‘Moses and the prophets have warned them. Your brothers can read what they wrote.’

30 “The rich man replied, ‘No, Father Abraham! But if someone is sent to them from the dead, then they will repent of their sins and turn to God.’

31 “But Abraham said, ‘If they won’t listen to Moses and the prophets, they won’t listen even if someone rises from the dead.’”


Will you listen to the One that has risen from the dead? Have you heard from Him? Do you believe His testimony about the place of the dead and the place of the living now available through His death, burial and resurrection?


That Sunday morning angelic message said that resurrected Jesus had gone ahead of them into Galilee. Today, resurrected Jesus has gone ahead of us into Heaven, the place of the living. But if you refuse His invitation to follow him you will remain forever in the place of the dead. The resurrection is our only way out! Now, do you understand how big the resurrection is?


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen,


Terry Cooper

a word from terry about

the spirit without limit

Today, I would like to talk about the application of the Holy Spirit. Does the Holy Spirit have limits? Does that depend upon the person that the Holy Spirit lives inside? Was it different in the Old Testament vs. the New Testament? The Bible tells us the Holy Spirit came upon David in power when he was just a young boy, maybe 10-15 years of age. Did that Spirit have limits? Did David have limits? Could David do anything he wanted, whenever he wanted?


1 Samuel 16:13 (NLT)

13 So as David stood there among his brothers, Samuel took the flask of olive oil he had brought and anointed David with the oil. And the Spirit of the LORD came powerfully upon David from that day on. Then Samuel returned to Ramah.


Even though David received the Spirit at a very young age he didn’t become King of Israel until he was 30 years old. Did the Spirit of the Lord have limits? Did David have limits? The New Testament gives us another example of the Spirit coming in power, but this time it was in the womb of a Jewish woman named Elizabeth. God sent the angel Gabriel to deliver the news that the Holy Spirit was coming to a person (John the Baptist) still in their mother’s womb.


Luke 1:13-15 (NLT)

13 But the angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah! God has heard your prayer. Your wife, Elizabeth, will give you a son, and you are to name him John.

14 You will have great joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth,

15 for he will be great in the eyes of the Lord. He must never touch wine or other alcoholic drinks. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even before his birth.


Did the Spirit inside John the Baptist have limits? Did John have limits? Could John do anything He wanted, whenever he wanted?


John the Baptist was born of a supernatural birth with a supernatural gift of the Spirit. He grew up and lived under the power and authority of the Holy Spirit. John was born about six months before Jesus. The Spirit of God inside John the Baptist was preparing a way for the coming Messiah-Jesus. John grew up and Jesus grew up. John was the one who baptized Jesus in the Jordan River and the Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus that day.


Was there any difference between the Spirit that came to David, John and Jesus? Did the Spirit have limits? Did these men have limits? Could all or some of these men do anything they wanted, anytime they wanted? If so, what were they and why? John the Baptist begins to reveal the differences and yes there are big differences.


John 3:31-33 (NLT)

31 “He [Jesus] has come from above and is greater than anyone else. We are of the earth, and we speak of earthly things, but he has come from heaven and is greater than anyone else.

32 He testifies about what he has seen and heard, but how few believe what he tells them!

33 Anyone who accepts his testimony can affirm that God is true.


Jesus is from heaven and David, John and were not. Jesus testifies firsthand about what He has seen and heard from the Father and David, John cannot. Jesus was sent to earth by God the Father and they were not. And then John reveals something uniquely amazing about Jesus, especially coming from a man that had the Holy Spirit even before he was born...


John 3:34 (NLT)

34 For he is sent by God. He speaks God’s words, for God gives him the Spirit without limit.


God gave David the Spirit, but not without limit. God gave John the Spirit, but not without limit...did you see it? The Spirit without limit is God without limit? God has not limits! David is not God in the flesh. John is not God in the flesh. Jesus is God in the flesh and God is Spirit. The limitless fullness of God was in Jesus...NO LIMITS.


Colossians 1:19 (NLT)

19 For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ,


John 4:24 (NLT)

24 For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.”


David could not do whatever he wanted whenever he wanted. David had limits. John could not do whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted. John had limits. Jesus has the Spirit without limit...no limit to what He can do.


John 3:35-36 (NLT)

35 The Father loves his Son and has put everything into his hands.

36 And anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life. Anyone who doesn’t obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgment.”


Everything means everything and believing in Him is eternal life and not believing in Him means eternal angry judgment and death. Now, for the big question today. What do you think happens to us when Jesus, the One that has the Spirit without limit, comes to lives inside of us? Jesus reveals the answer to that very big question.


John 14:15-21 (NLT)

15 “If you love me, obey my commandments.

16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you.

17 He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know him, because he lives with you now and later will be in you.

18 No, I will not abandon you as orphans—I will come to you.

19 Soon the world will no longer see me, but you will see me. Since I live, you also will live.

20 When I am raised to life again, you will know that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.

21 Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.”


I have the Holy Spirit living inside me right now, but I do not have the Spirit without limit. I cannot do whatever I want, whenever I want. I have limits. The One that lives in me is the Spirit without limit. He alone is God and I am not God. The Spirit without limit is the unlimited power of God and the Father has given that power and authority over to the Son-Jesus!


There is an unlimited power living inside the followers of Jesus. We are not the unlimited power. The One living inside us is the unlimited power because He is the Spirit without limit...God without limit.


I encourage you today to recognize the unlimited power of Christ that dwells inside those who truly believe in Him. Today, like the Apostle Paul we freely acknowledge our weaknesses and our human limitations. But we also acknowledge the unlimited power of Christ that lives in our hearts. It is in our weakness that He reveals His limitless power!


2 Corinthians 12:8-10 (NLT)

8 Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away [my weakness].

9 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.

10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.


Maranatha, Hosanna, Hallelujah and Amen


Terry Cooper

A word from terry about

green leaves

I was privileged to grow up in a Christian home. My mom and dad always took us to Sunday church services (morning and night). We attended Sunday School and VBS. It was our way of life. Our Sunday School class also had a tradition of taking roll and asking each person how many chapters they had read from the Bible that week. I didn’t want to say “zero”, so I would often read a short chapter just before church on Sunday. One of my favorite “last minute” chapters was Psalms chapter one. I read it so many times that I accidently memorized it (LOL). As a child I had no way of knowing how important that chapter would become, later in life. That chapter revealed to me the incredible value of “GREEN LEAVES”.


Psalm 1:1-3 (NIV)

1 Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers.

2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.

3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.


These green leaves don’t wither! Do you know how powerful that truth is? These green leaves don’t wither and Psalms chapter one taught me how to keep my leaves green. Green leaves bring God’s blessings and green leaves are God’s blessings and I know the secret of the green leaves. Do you?

  • Do not walk in the counsel of the wicked...don’t listen to godless people, those who have rejected the Law/Word of the Lord, when they try to tell you about green leaves.
  • Do not stand next to sinners who are proud of their sins and pretend that their leaves will never turn brown and die.
  • Do not sit down with mockers that make fun of the revealed truth of the green leaves.

Did you notice the sequence? The blessing of the green leaves belongs to those who DO NOT fall into the dried-up brown leaf trap. Did you see it? Walk, stand and sit. Do you see the progression now? The brown leaf trap usually begins when we walk up to wicked counselors. They are all around us. It’s hard to avoid this first step...called “walk”. But don’t stand next to them and don’t sit down with them...Keep walking! Why? Because they have brown leaves and fruitless lives. Brown leaf people are going to fall from the tree of life and be blown away. Brown leaf people will not stand on the day of judgment.


Psalm 1:4-6 (NIV)

4 Not so the wicked! They are like chaff that the wind blows away.

5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.

6 For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.


Do you understand the incredible value of forever green leaves? They only come from a tree planted by streams of water. Do you delight in the Law/Word of God? Do you meditate on it day and night? Do you want green leaves? Finally, what does this wonderful Word of God reveal about the tree of life and the river of the wat