rodney howard browne

Hebrews 12:11 AMP says, “For the time being no discipline brings joy, but seems grievous and painful; but afterwards it yields a peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.”

Discipline – instruction, training, correction – is not pleasant at the time it is being administered, but it produces righteousness in the person being disciplined and ultimately it produces peace. If you will submit to God’s discipline – through His Word and His Spirit, you will bring forth the fruit of righteousness and peace.

And have you [completely] forgotten the divine word of appeal and encouragement in which you are reasoned with and addressed as sons? My son, do not think lightly or scorn to submit to the correction and discipline of the Lord, nor lose courage and give up and faint when you are reproved or corrected by Him; 6 For the Lord corrects and disciplines everyone whom He loves, and He punishes, even scourges, every son whom He accepts and welcomes to His heart and cherishes. 7 You must submit to and endure [correction] for discipline; God is dealing with you as with sons. For what son is there whom his father does not [thus] train and correct and discipline? 8 Now if you are exempt from correction and left without discipline in which all [of God’s children] share, then you are illegitimate offspring and not true sons [at all]. 9 Moreover, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we yielded [to them] and respected [them for training us]. Shall we not much more cheerfully submit to the Father of spirits and so [truly] live? 10 For [our earthly fathers] disciplined us for only a short period of time and chastised us as seemed proper and good to them; but He disciplines us for our certain good, that we may become sharers in His own holiness.  Hebrews 12:5-10 AMP

The biggest problem in the Church today, is that you have too many people calling themselves Christians – children of Father God – who do not, and will not, submit themselves to God’s discipline through His Word and Spirit. Paul tells us not to take God’s discipline lightly and not to get all bent out of shape or give up when He corrects you. We have seen so many people going round and round the mountain one more time, because they have areas of their life that are off limits to God. They will not allow the Lord to bring correction to them in particular areas of their lives, therefore they never grow in those areas and are always in bondage to the mistaken attitudes and ways of thinking that come with pride and sin. Of course, discipline is not pleasant at the time! None of us likes to be disciplined – its hard on our flesh and our pride and our ego – but if we will humble ourselves and allow the fire of God to do its work in us, we will come through the other side with a burden lifted; freer and more joy-filled than we have ever been before; with a new appreciation for our Father God and how much He loves and cares for us!

Paul asks the question: “For what son is there whom his father does not thus train and correct and discipline?” Discipline is for the good of the child. In those days fathers would instruct and discipline their children and God expects fathers to continue to do that today. Instructing, disciplining, correcting, and training his children is one of the main responsibilities of a father – not just putting a roof over your kid’s heads, clothes on their back, food on their plate, and sending them to a good school. None of these things will produce obedient kids and good, productive citizens without your personal, daily input. You have to realize that if you do not give your children guidance – someone else will; if you do not mold them and shape them – someone else will.

Politicians are always trying to remove or hinder parental authority – in the guise of what is good for the child – and have succeeded in many instances, but God put the responsibility for teaching, training, and discipline squarely on the parents, especially the fathers! You have to understand that we are in a war for the hearts of men. Ungodly law-makers and educators would love to have the opportunity to shape your child’s mind and attitude. Why do you think it was so important to the atheists for prayer to be taken out of school? This one decision has changed several generations – and not for the good. America is losing its moral compass as society encourages rebellion against authority and disdain for all that is good. If you do not take responsibility for appropriately disciplining your children, you leave them open for a life of rebelliousness against authority, resulting in rebellion against God, Himself!     

Raising and disciplining a child is not the easy way or the lazy way – it requires effort and time and consistency. You have to discipline yourself to take the time and make the effort to input into your children. It takes lots and lots of love and patience. You have to put your own flesh under; you cannot afford to be selfish; you cannot abdicate your responsibilities and leave it up to the mother of your children to do it all on her own. A father’s influence on his kids is huge – whether he takes responsibility or not. He is directly responsible for how they turn out. A father who refuses to be involved with his children’s upbringing – whether he lives in the house or not – is sending a message to his children: you are illegitimate! That may sound strong, but illegitimate children are usually not acknowledged nor treated as sons. If you ignore them – that is the message you are sending – you are saying, “You are not loved or wanted.”

We are not illegitimate offspring – we are children of our Father God. Discipline produces respect. If we respect our earthly fathers and obey them, should we not even much more submit to our Heavenly Father and live! Earthly fathers discipline us for only a short period of time and chastise us as seems proper and good to them; but God disciplines us for our certain good, that we may become sharers in His own holiness.


rodney howard browne

Now after this the Lord chose and appointed seventy others and sent them out ahead of Him, two by two, into every town and place where He Himself was about to come (visit). 2 And He said to them, The harvest indeed is abundant [there is much ripe grain], but the farmhands are few. Pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest. 3 Go your way; behold, I send you out like lambs into the midst of wolves. 4 Carry no purse, no provisions bag, no [change of] sandals; refrain from [retarding your journey by] saluting and wishing anyone well along the way. 5 Whatever house you enter, first say, Peace be to this household! [Freedom from all the distresses that result from sin be with this family]. 6 And if anyone [worthy] of peace and blessedness is there, the peace and blessedness you wish shall come upon him; but if not, it shall come back to you. 7 And stay on in the same house, eating and drinking what they provide, for the laborer is worthy of his wages. Do not keep moving from house to house. 8 Whenever you go into a town and they receive and accept and welcome you, eat what is set before you; 9 And heal the sick in it and say to them, The kingdom of God has come close to you.  Luke 10:1-9 AMP

The seventy returned with joy, saying, Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name! 18 And He said to them, I saw Satan falling like a lightning [flash] from heaven. 19 Behold! I have given you authority and power to trample upon serpents and scorpions, and [physical and mental strength and ability] over all the power that the enemy [possesses]; and nothing shall in any way harm you. 20 Nevertheless, do not rejoice at this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are enrolled in heaven. Luke 10:17-20 AMP

Jesus sent the seventy out before Him to minister to people – to heal them and set them free. The seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your Name!” And Jesus said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.”

The Name of Jesus is not a toy – but a powerful weapon! We should use it with purpose. Don’t think you are the one the devil is afraid of – it is the mighty Name! Immature Christians may get excited about the fact that devils are subject to them – but they need to grow up and realize that it’s not because of them, but because of Jesus. They must realize that the devil is not an enemy to be taken lightly or to be underestimated. They must not be ignorant of the devil’s devices.

The fact that you – as a blood-washed believer – have authority over devils and demons should be a reality to you. It should not be something you take lightly or for granted, but something that is an established fact in your life and in your walk and in your talk. Meditate on the scriptures that are the source of your authority in Jesus Christ. Don’t rejoice that demons are subject to you – but rejoice that you are washed in the blood of Jesus; that you are saved; that your name is written down in the Lamb’s Book of Life!

Rejoice in your salvation – rejoice in what Jesus has done for you. Keep your nose clean and your attitude humble!

But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.” 7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  James 4:6-7 NKJV

God sets Himself against the proud and haughty – but He gives grace to the humble. We need God’s grace! First you submit yourself to God – then you resist the devil. Know that the devil is powerless against the mighty Name of Jesus, but don’t take pride in the authority given you – be humbly grateful that God has redeemed you from the devil’s clutches, domination, and influence. Always give the praise, honor and glory to God. The best protection from the devil you can have is to have clean hands and a pure heart!

Who shall go up into the mountain of the Lord? Or who shall stand in His Holy Place? 4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who has not lifted himself up to falsehood or to what is false, nor sworn deceitfully.  Psalms 24:3-4 AMP


rodney howard browne

I covenant with God to treasure my wife and be faithful to her
I am a man of integrity
I am the husband of one wife
I am wholly committed to my wife
I confine myself to her
I live joyfully with her
By the grace of God I am the head of my home
I am the priest and prophet of my home
I am submitted to God as I lovingly lead my wife and family  
I love my wife as Christ loves the church
I give my life for her
I love my wife like my own flesh
I provide for her
I carefully protect her
I remember that God gave her to me
She is my grace gift
She is my “good thing” – the evidence of God’s favor on my life
I live considerately with my wife
I intelligently recognize our marriage union
I honor my wife as physically the weaker
However, I realize that spiritually, we are equals
We are both joint-heirs of the grace of life
We are both joint-heirs of the unmerited favor of God
I do this so we can pray effectively
I do this so our prayers will not be hindered or cut off
I remember that she is more sensitive and tender than I am
I am affectionate and sympathetic toward her
I am patient and kind toward her
I am sensitive to her needs and desires
I am never harsh, bitter or resentful toward her
I humble myself to be compassionate, courteous, and tenderhearted toward her
I belong to my wife and my wife belongs to me
My body belongs to my wife and my wife’s body belongs to me
I make it a priority to please and bless my wife
I make it a priority to try to meet her needs
My earnest desire is to please her
I rejoice in my wife
She is a blessing to me
She is my best friend
Thank You Lord for my wife


rodney howard browne

The saying is true and irrefutable: If any man [eagerly] seeks the office of bishop (superintendent, overseer), he desires an excellent task (work).  1 Timothy 3:1 AMP

If anyone wants to participate in building God’s kingdom – that is a good thing. However, there are some qualities you need to have, and some requirements that need to be met, that qualify you for leadership, for the good and benefit of all concerned.

Now a bishop (superintendent, overseer) must give no grounds for accusation but must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, circumspect and temperate and self-controlled; [he must be] sensible and well behaved and dignified and lead an orderly (disciplined) life; [he must be] hospitable [showing love for and being a friend to the believers, especially strangers or foreigners, and be] a capable and qualified teacher.  1 Timothy 3:2

A person, who wants to be a leader, must lead the way by setting a good example and giving no grounds for accusation. 1 Thessalonians 5:22 says that we must abstain from all appearance of evil. You must abstain from evil and the appearance of evil. Those who want to be in leadership must conduct themselves in such a way that they are above reproach; that no one could have a valid reason to accuse them of anything at all because they avoid even the appearance of evil. Those who want to be in leadership must obey God’s word and truly live a godly life, not just pretend to do it. God does not expect us to be perfect – He knows we are dust – but He does expect us to be righteous – to walk in the righteousness for which His Son paid so high a price!

Leaders must be faithful to their spouse and take care of their marriage. They must unconditionally love their spouse; they must protect them; and, at the same time, speak the truth in love to them. Husbands and wives should protect each other – not covering sin, but preventing it if possible, and if it’s not possible – working together to repent, forgive and restore.

Those who want to be in leadership must bring their flesh under subjection to the word of God and the Holy Spirit. They must be courteous. They must not be selfish, but they must walk the love walk and they must be generous and hospitable, not being a respecter of persons. They must also have an anointing to preach or teach and to minister to others. This is not something that you can just decide to do, but it is a gift only God can give.  

Not given to wine, not combative but gentle and considerate, not quarrelsome but forbearing and peaceable, and not a lover of money [insatiable for wealth and ready to obtain it by questionable means].  1 Timothy 3:3

Those who want to be in leadership must not yield their bodies to temptations of the flesh. When your body is addicted to a substance, whether it is alcohol, drugs, or nicotine, those things control you and your mind. They impel you to do things you wouldn’t normally do. Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and should be yielded to Him alone. The devil uses addictions to control you and destroy you and your loved ones, but God will only bless you as you yield your body to Him. Proverbs 31:4-5 AMP says, “It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine, or for rulers to desire strong drink, 5 Lest they drink and forget the law and what it decrees, and pervert the justice due any of the afflicted.”

The Holy Spirit is your helper to free you of any controls that the devil tries to put on you. 2 Corinthians 3:17 AMP says, “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (emancipation from bondage, freedom).”

Those who want to be in leadership must not be quarrelsome, because that is a sign of someone who is spiritually immature. A spiritually mature person walks in the love of God and is at peace with others. Those who want to be in leadership must definitely not be greedy or covetous! Covetousness has a corrupting influence – it makes money and selfish ambition more important than people and than God’s will and His word. Luke 16:11 AMP says, “Therefore if you have not been faithful in the [case of] unrighteous mammon (deceitful riches, money, possessions), who will entrust to you the true riches?” God knows that if you are not faithful with money, you won’t be faithful with the anointing of God, or the presence of God, or the Gifts and callings of the Holy Spirit – so be faithful with money! Be a cheerful, generous giver yourself!


rodney howard browne

So then, there is still awaiting a full and complete Sabbath-rest reserved for the [true] people of God;


10 For he who has once entered [God’s] rest also has ceased from [the weariness and pain] of human labors, just as God rested from those labors peculiarly His own.


11 Let us therefore be zealous and exert ourselves and strive diligently to enter that rest [of God, to know and experience it for ourselves], that no one may fall or perish by the same kind of unbelief and disobedience [into which those in the wilderness fell].

Hebrews 4:9-11 AMP


There is a full and complete Sabbath-rest reserved for God’s people. This rest is a rest of faith; a rest of trust in Him and His ability to meet every need you have or could ever have.


You are either laboring or you are resting. When people do not trust in God, they trust in themselves. Trusting in yourself or anything other than the Lord is unbelief and disobedience. It is also stressful. Trusting in God requires faith, obedience, and trust. Unbelief and disobedience will rob you of the blessings available to you as an obedient child of God.


Unless you trust in God as your only source and supply, you will not enter into His rest. You have to cease from the weariness and pain of your own human labors. God wants you to know and experience His rest for yourself. You must be zealous; you must exert yourself; you must strive diligently to enter God’s rest. The only work you need to do is to place your trust firmly in God and obey Him in all things. What can you do to enter into God’s rest?


Cast your cares on Him:


Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully. 1 Peter 5:7 AMP


Don’t be double-minded:


If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. James 1:5-8 NKJV


Be motivated by, and operate in, faith—not fear:

Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him.” Hebrews 10:38 NKJV


For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control. 2 Timothy 1:7 AMP


Know God’s Word. If you know His Word, you will know His will:

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Hosea 4:6a NKJV


Know that God’s Word is true and that He always keeps His promises:

Then said the Lord to me, You have seen well, for I am alert and active, watching over My word to perform it. Jeremiah 1:12 AMP


“God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good? Numbers 23:19 NKJV


Act on God’s Word. If you don’t DO the Word, you demonstrate that you do not really believe the Word. If you don’t believe the Word, you will not inherit the promises:


But be doers of the Word [obey the message], and not merely listeners to it, betraying yourselves [into deception by reasoning contrary to the Truth].


23 For if anyone only listens to the Word without obeying it and being a doer of it, he is like a man who looks carefully at his [own] natural face in a mirror;


24 For he thoughtfully observes himself, and then goes off and promptly forgets what he was like.


25 But he who looks carefully into the faultless law, the [law] of liberty, and is faithful to it and perseveres in looking into it, being not a heedless listener who forgets but an active doer [who obeys], he shall be blessed in his doing (his life of obedience). James 1:22-25 AMP


Always be full of joy and gratefulness:


And Nehemiah, who was the governor, and Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all of them, This day is holy to the Lord your God; mourn not nor weep. For all the people wept when they heard the words of the Law.


10 Then [Ezra] told them, Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet drink, and send portions to him for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. And be not grieved and depressed, for the joy of the Lord is your strength and stronghold.


11 So the Levites quieted all the people, saying, Be still, for the day is holy. And do not be grieved and sad.


12 And all the people went their way to eat, drink, send portions, and make great rejoicing, for they had understood the words that were declared to them. Nehemiah 8:9-12 AMP


Demonstrate that you trust Him and that you know He is God and that He is still the boss, by your faith and obedience. Be STILL and KNOW:

Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! 11 The LORD of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Psalms 46:10-11 NKJV



rodney howard browne

For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the bondmaid and one by the free woman.


23 But whereas the child of the slave woman was born according to the flesh and had an ordinary birth, the son of the free woman was born in fulfillment of the promise.


24 Now all this is an allegory; these [two women] represent two covenants. one covenant originated from Mount Sinai [where the Law was given] and bears [children destined] for slavery; this is Hagar.


25 Now Hagar is (stands for) Mount Sinai in Arabia and she corresponds to and belongs in the same category with the present Jerusalem, for she is in bondage together with her children.


26 But the Jerusalem above (the Messianic kingdom of Christ) is free, and she is our mother.


27 For it is written in the Scriptures, Rejoice, O barren woman, who has not given birth to children; break forth into a joyful shout, you who are not feeling birth pangs, for the desolate woman has many more children than she who has a husband.


28 But we, brethren, are children [not by physical descent, as was Ishmael, but] like Isaac, born in virtue of promise.


29 Yet [just] as at that time the child [of ordinary birth] born according to the flesh despised and persecuted him [who was born remarkably] according to [the promise and the working of] the [Holy] Spirit, so it is now also.


30 But what does the Scripture say? Cast out and send away the slave woman and her son, for never shall the son of the slave woman be heir and share the inheritance with the son of the free woman.


31 So, brethren, we [who are born again] are not children of a slave woman [the natural], but of the free [the supernatural]. Galatians 4:22-31 AMP


Jesus Christ has paid the price for us and redeemed us from the curse of the Law! There is not one person on the earth who could ever hope to meet God’s approval and be acceptable to Him by means of the Law, because it is impossible for sinful man to keep the Law, for even if you break one small Law, you have broken the whole Law. The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 6:23).


In the Old Testament God gives us an allegory – a type and shadow of what is to come. Jesus came, in a supernatural way, to bring us into the liberty of the Spirit. In Galatians we see that the child of the slave woman (Hagar) is born according to the flesh, but the child of the free woman (Sarah) is born in fulfillment of the promise! Ishmael’s birth was something that was possible with man. He was a child of the flesh.


Isaac’s birth was supernatural, because it was impossible with man. Unlike Jesus, Isaac had a natural father and mother, however, because it was impossible for them to have children, because they were so old, and because Sarah was barren, his birth was a miracle – it was all God’s doing. He was a child of the Spirit.


How does this relate to us? All of mankind is born of the flesh initially. They can stay in that bondage if they choose to OR they can choose God’s way; they can choose Jesus; they can choose the miracle of the New Birth and be born again of the Spirit of God – the child of the free and the supernatural! The son of the slave will not inherit with the son of the free. There is only an inheritance for the son of the free woman!


Do you not know, brethren–for I am speaking to men who are acquainted with the Law–that legal claims have power over a person only for as long as he is alive?


2 For [instance] a married woman is bound by law to her husband as long as he lives; but if her husband dies, she is loosed and discharged from the law concerning her husband.


3 Accordingly, she will be held an adulteress if she unites herself to another man while her husband lives. But if her husband dies, the marriage law no longer is binding on her [she is free from that law]; and if she unites herself to another man, she is not an adulteress.


4 Likewise, my brethren, you have undergone death as to the Law through the [crucified] body of Christ, so that now you may belong to Another, to Him Who was raised from the dead in order that we may bear fruit for God.


5 When we were living in the flesh (mere physical lives), the sinful passions that were awakened and aroused up by [what] the Law [makes sin] were constantly operating in our natural powers (in our bodily organs, in the sensitive appetites and wills of the flesh), so that we bore fruit for death.


6 But now we are discharged from the Law and have terminated all intercourse with it, having died to what once restrained and held us captive. So now we serve not under [obedience to] the old code of written regulations, but [under obedience to the promptings] of the Spirit in newness [of life]. Romans 7:1-6 AMP


Another allegory is this: while she lives, the married woman is bound to her husband, but if he dies, she is free to be married to another. Once we were “married” to the Law. We have undergone death as to the Law through the crucified body of Christ, so that now we may belong to Another (Christ).


We belong to Jesus! We are married to Him! We are discharged (delivered) from the Law, having terminated all intercourse with it. That old marriage is over – the law no longer applies. We died to that which once held us captive. Now we serve, not in bondage, under obedience to the old code of written regulations, but in freedom, under obedience to the promptings of the Spirit in newness of life! We are no longer governed, guided, constrained, and compelled by the outward force of the written code, but we are led and guided inwardly by the Spirit of God. He is the One who leads us into life and blessing as we yield and submit ourselves to Him in faith!



rodney howard browne

Truly God is [only] good to Israel, even to those who are upright and pure in heart. 2 But as for me, my feet were almost gone, my steps had well-nigh slipped. 3 For I was envious of the foolish and arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. Psalms 73:1-3 AMP


God is only good – not bad – to those who are upright and pure in heart. When those who belong to God start to put their eyes on the sinners and envy their prosperity, they open up a world of trouble for themselves. They have already taken their eyes off God and all He has done and all He will do for them.


When we lose confidence in God’s care and concern for us and in His ability to meet our needs then we start to envy those who have nothing we really want. They don’t have God on their side. They have no eternal life. Their name is not written down in the Lamb’s Book of Life. Heaven is not waiting joyfully to receive them.


For they suffer no violent pangs in their death, but their strength is firm.


5 They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they smitten and plagued like other men.


6 Therefore pride is about their necks like a chain; violence covers them like a garment [like a long, luxurious robe].


7 Their eyes stand out with fatness, they have more than heart could wish; and the imaginations of their minds overflow [with follies].


8 They scoff, and wickedly utter oppression; they speak loftily [from on high, maliciously and blasphemously].


9 They set their mouths against and speak down from heaven, and their tongues swagger through the earth [invading even heaven with blasphemy and smearing earth with slanders]. Psalms 73:4-9 AMP


Prosperity makes the sinner arrogant. They think of themselves more highly than they ought and they have no respect for anyone – even for God.


Therefore His people return here, and waters of a full cup [offered by the wicked] are [blindly] drained by them.


11 And they say, How does God know? Is there knowledge in the Most High?


12 Behold, these are the ungodly, who always prosper and are at ease in the world; they increase in riches.


13 Surely then in vain have I cleansed my heart and washed my hands in innocence.


14 For all the day long have I been smitten and plagued, and chastened every morning.


15 Had I spoken thus [and given expression to my feelings], I would have been untrue and have dealt treacherously against the generation of Your children. Psalms 73:10-15 AMP


The devil tries to put doubt in the minds of God’s people and turn them against Him. They start to feel like everything they have done to serve and honor God has been futile. The worst thing you can do when you are feeling bad and thinking negative is to speak it out. Power is released by the spoken word. The power of faith is released by faith-filled words and the power of fear is released when negative, fearful words are spoken.


Things are put into motion when you speak them out – whether good or bad! When you speak out your anger and bitterness against God and against your situation, you are not speaking the truth and you are speaking like a traitor, because God loves you and He is ONLY good to His kids!


But when I considered how to understand this, it was too great an effort for me and too painful


17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood [for I considered] their end.


18[After all] You do set the [wicked] in slippery places; You cast them down to ruin and destruction.


19 How they become a desolation in a moment! They are utterly consumed with terrors!


20 As a dream [which seems real] until one awakens, so, O Lord, when You arouse Yourself [to take note of the wicked], You will despise their outward show. Psalms 73:16-20 AMP


There is a Day of Reckoning. Every man will be judged and will receive their reward or punishment. No man can set himself against God and live! His end is devastation.


For my heart was grieved, embittered, and in a state of ferment, and I was pricked in my heart [as with the sharp fang of an adder].


22 So foolish, stupid, and brutish was I, and ignorant; I was like a beast before You.


23 Nevertheless I am continually with You; You do hold my right hand.


24 You will guide me with Your counsel, and afterward receive me to honor and glory.


25 Whom have I in heaven but You? And I have no delight or desire on earth besides You.


26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the Rock and firm Strength of my heart and my Portion forever.


27 For behold, those who are far from You shall perish; You will destroy all who are false to You and like [spiritual] harlots depart from You.


28 But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God and made Him my refuge, that I may tell of all Your works. Psalms 73:21-28 AMP


Even though you may go through some very difficult times, if you will remember that God is on your side, if you will put your eyes back on Him, and place your trust fully in Him, He will forgive and forget your little “wobbly” and be there for you once again. You see God would never leave you.


If you felt far from Him, it is because you are the one who walked away from Him. Whom do you have in heaven but your God? He is your rock, firm Strength of your heart and your Portion forever. He is all you have and all you need. It is good for you to draw closer to God, put your trust in Him, and make Him your refuge, because when you do, you will have a great testimony to tell of His goodness to you!




The man of many friends [a friend of all the world] will prove himself a bad friend, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24 AMP


It is great to be friendly and have many acquaintances, but in order to be a loyal friend you cannot spread yourself too thin. Some people are friendly with everyone, but when you need them they are nowhere to be found. When you find yourself in a difficult situation, your true friends are the ones who stick with you – they stay with you; they walk with you; they help you through; they don’t judge you, but they tell you the truth.


Wealth makes many friends, but the poor man is avoided by his neighbor. Proverbs 19:4 AMP


A true friend is not one who comes around you when you have something they want, and then disappears when you fall on hard times. A true friend loves you for yourself. It is often very hard to know who your true friends are when you are wealthy and popular! A friend loves at all times, and is born, as is a brother, for adversity. Proverbs 17:17 AMP


A true friend loves you no matter what. A true friend is one who is loyal. A true friend will face adversity and go through it with you. A true friend does not turn and run when the going gets tough. Jesus is such a friend.


This is My commandment: that you love one another [just] as I have loved you. 13 No one has greater love [no one has shown stronger affection] than to lay down (give up) his own life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you keep on doing the things which I command you to do. John 15:12-14 AMP


Jesus said, “Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” Jesus loved us so much that He laid down His life for us before we were His friends. He laid down His life for His enemies – to make them his friends! Jesus is King of kings and Lord of lords and yet He loves us and makes Himself our friend and makes us His friends! What an honor and a privilege we have to be called friends of Jesus! We should not take it lightly. We should prove ourselves worthy of the title by our loyal commitment to Him.


Your own friend and your father’s friend, forsake them not; neither go to your brother’s house in the day of your calamity. Better is a neighbor who is near [in spirit] than a brother who is far off [in heart]. Proverbs 27:10 AMP


They say that blood is thicker than water, in other words, family ties are stronger than friendships. However, sometimes a good friend is more faithful and committed to you than a family member, particularly when you receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior. If your family does not believe in Jesus and you do, it can bring a wedge in your relationship. The body of Christ is a family and you can ask God to bring people into your life who will be just like family to you – people who love God as much as you do and who will speak the truth in love.

Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are lavish and deceitful. Proverbs 27:6 AMP


Iron sharpens iron; so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend [to show rage or worthy purpose]. Proverbs 27:17 AMP


A good friend will tell you the truth even if it offends you. They will call you on your junk; they will challenge you; they will not allow you to have any bad habits or bad attitudes. Of course, they will tell you the truth in love, because they care about you. They tell you truth, not because they want to hurt you, but because they want to help you; to make you a better person.


A true friend not only knows what to say to you, but also when and how so that you will hear what they are saying and receive it from them. It is better to have a friend who tells you the truth than an enemy who lies to you with flattery. Unfortunately, some people have been too prideful to receive sound advice from a true friend and have rejected their friend and his/her advice to go after a person who tells them what they want to hear, but who does not mean a word of it.


Don’t be that kind of fickle, foolish person. If you know that you have believed flattery over the truth, it is not too late to humble yourself and go back to your true friends and apologize for your foolishness. Jesus and the Holy Spirit are true friends who will always tell you the truth.


He who rebukes a man shall afterward find more favor than he who flatters with the tongue. Proverbs 28:23 AMP


Oil and perfume rejoice the heart; so does the sweetness of a friend’s counsel that comes from the heart. Proverbs 27:9 AMP


When a good friend speaks the truth, from their heart, into your life and you receive it, it is sweet like perfume. When you are a good friend to your friends and you speak the truth in love to them, they will appreciate it – maybe not immediately, but eventually. Don’t be intimidated by an initial negative response. Stay calm and hold your ground and continue to love and respect them. If you have a judgmental attitude, no one will be able to receive what you are saying, because your motives are suspect, but if you do not judge your friends and you love them unconditionally, they will welcome your input, opinion, and advice!



rodney howard browne

Jesus answered them, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Whoever commits and practices sin is the slave of sin.  John 8:34 AMP

Sin’s purpose is to enslave you. As long as you yield to sin, it will be your master. Jesus’ whole life purpose was to free mankind from the bondage and slavery of sin by the power of His blood.

He who covers his transgressions will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes his sins will obtain mercy. 
  Proverbs 28:13 AMP

When Adam and Eve committed the first sin against God, they also ran to hide from Him. People are still hiding from God today. Sin is always followed and accompanied by guilt and also the conviction of the Holy Spirit and your own conscience. Hiding away from God and/or covering up sin will not make it disappear. Those who want to retain their sin will keep it hidden. You are not fooling God, though. If you want to be blessed, you must expose sin—bring it out of the dark and into the light—so that you can obtain mercy.

Blessed, (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is he who has forgiveness of his transgression continually exercised upon him, whose sin is covered. 2 Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man to whom the Lord imputes no iniquity and in whose spirit there is no deceit. 3 When I kept silence [before I confessed], my bones wasted away through my groaning all the day long. 4 For day and night Your hand [of displeasure] was heavy upon me; my moisture was turned into the drought of summer. Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]! 5 I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide. I said, I will confess my transgressions to the Lord [continually unfolding the past till all is told]–then You [instantly] forgave me the guilt and iniquity of my sin. Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]!  Psalms 32:1-5 AMP

When you cover up your sin because of shame or pride, you will continue to feel guilt and condemnation. There is no peace in your heart or your life. But when you are honest with God, and you tell Him all, acknowledging your sin, and offering no excuses, then forgiveness and peace will be poured out on you. There is no more shame; you are free from the enslaving bondage of that sin!

Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your steadfast love; according to the multitude of Your tender mercy and loving-kindness blot out my transgressions. 2 Wash me thoroughly [and repeatedly] from my iniquity and guilt and cleanse me and make me wholly pure from my sin! 3 For I am conscious of my transgressions and I acknowledge them; my sin is ever before me. 4 Against You, You only, have I sinned and done that which is evil in Your sight, so that You are justified in Your sentence and faultless in Your judgment.  Psalms 51:1-4 AMP

When asking for forgiveness, it is very important to humble yourself before God, and not make excuses for your sin. If, because of pride, you defend your actions and excuse your behavior, you show no evidence of repentance, which is a prerequisite to forgiveness. It is essential that you not only declare what your sin is, but that you also acknowledge that it was a sin and that you have no excuse. You can’t fool God. If it is mere lip service made with excuses in the heart and a defensive posture, it will count for nothing with Him.

Some people are so hardened by sin that even when they are caught out in sin and exposed, they are still not sorry for their sin, only sorry that they got caught. You must admit that you have sinned before you can ask to be forgiven. Along with the admittance of guilt, there must be a willingness to bear the consequences of the sin and to make restitution. Some sin is over when it is admitted to God and forgiven by God, but some sin involves restitution. Make sure that you make right with God and man, so that you can have a truly clear conscience.   

If we say we have no sin [refusing to admit that we are sinners], we delude and lead ourselves astray, and the Truth [which the Gospel presents] is not in us [does not dwell in our hearts]. 9 If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just (true to His own nature and promises) and will forgive our sins [dismiss our lawlessness] and [continuously] cleanse us from all unrighteousness [everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action]. 10 If we say (claim) we have not sinned, we contradict His Word and make Him out to be false and a liar, and His Word is not in us [the divine message of the Gospel is not in our hearts].  1 John 1:8-10 AMP

You must realize that it is the will of the Father to forgive everyone and to set them free from sin! But he can only forgive those who believe His Word and who come to Him, in obedience, to be washed clean from their sin. If you say you have not sinned when you have, you are self-deceived and you will die in your sin. It is important to freely admit that you have sinned and confess your sins to God. When you do that, He will immediately forgive your sins and cleanse you from all unrighteousness, because He is faithful and just and because He has obligated Himself by His Word.  

You have no power to right the wrongs you have done—only God can cancel your past and give you a brighter future.


rodney howard browne

And Moses said to the heads or leaders of the tribes of Israel, This is the thing which the Lord has commanded: 2 If a man vows a vow to the Lord or swears an oath to bind himself by a pledge, he shall not break and profane his word; he shall do according to all that proceeds out of his mouth. Numbers 30:1-2 AMP

In this day and age, it is becoming rarer to find a person who always keeps his or her word. So many people today think nothing of promising what they cannot or will not deliver. They don’t ever plan on keeping their word, but they give it anyway. They promise to do something and then “forget” and never show up; they promise to pay something and then default on the loan; they marry and promise to be faithful and then they cheat on their spouse; they promise to give something and then never follow through. It is time for us as Christians to come clean and make a fresh start. If you make a promise or a pledge or a commitment, you should do everything you can to fulfill it.

It is a snare to a man to utter a vow [of consecration] rashly and [not until] afterward inquire [whether he can fulfill it]. Proverbs 20:25 AMP

You cannot and should not make a promise if you have no idea whether or not you have the means to actually keep that promise. If you make it a priority to always keep your word then you will not be rash with your promises. If you commit to keep your vows, then you will be careful to promise only what you are prepared to fulfill.

Vow and pay to the Lord your God; let all who are round about Him bring presents to Him Who ought to be [reverently] feared. Psalms 76:11 AMP

Some people solve the problem of unfulfilled vows, by never committing to anything. This is not a solution. You need to commit to give to the Lord in as many areas as you can—generously. He is so generous with you and me! You need to decide for yourself what you will give—of your time; your effort; your money—and you need to give it freely and joyfully.

I will come into Your house with burnt offerings [of entire consecration]; I will pay You my vows, 14 Which my lips uttered and my mouth promised when I was in distress. Psalms 66:13-14 AMP

Many people make all kinds of promises to God while they are in distress, but when He comes through for them, and when they are all fine and dandy, they just conveniently forget about the vow they made. These people have no respect for Almighty God. It is very important that we acknowledge God’s hand in our deliverance. It is very rude to ignore the One Who saved you. If you made God a promise in exchange for His help, then you must follow through and keep your word to Him. He did what you asked of Him and He expects you to do what you said you would.

When you make a vow to the Lord your God, you shall not be slack in paying it, for the Lord your God will surely require it of you, and slackness would be sin in you. 22 But if you refrain from vowing, it will not be sin in you. 23 The vow which has passed your lips you shall be watchful to perform, a voluntary offering which you have made to the Lord your God, which you have promised with your mouth. Deuteronomy 23:21-23 AMP

When you make a vow to the Lord, you should not be slack in paying it. God requires that you keep your word. It is a sin for you to be slack in your promise.

Be not rash with your mouth, and let not your heart be hasty to utter a word before God. For God is in heaven, and you are on earth; therefore let your words be few. 3 For a dream comes with much business and painful effort, and a fool’s voice with many words. 4 When you vow a vow or make a pledge to God, do not put off paying it; for God has no pleasure in fools (those who witlessly mock Him). Pay what you vow. 5 It is better that you should not vow than that you should vow and not pay. 6 Do not allow your mouth to cause your body to sin, and do not say before the messenger [the priest] that it was an error or mistake. Why should God be [made] angry at your voice and destroy the work of your hands? 7 For in a multitude of dreams there is futility and worthlessness, and ruin in a flood of words. But [reverently] fear God [revere and worship Him, knowing that He is]. Ecclesiastes 5:2-7 AMP

Don’t be rash with your mouth; don’t be hasty to make promises before God. It’s great to have plans and dreams, but it takes much time and effort to make them happen. Just because you talk about doing something, doesn’t mean it will just happen. You need to work the dream; you need to do what you say you’ll do. Pay what you vow. It is better to never make a promise than to promise and not keep it. Don’t just be a talker, be a doer. If you will keep your word to God, He will keep His word to you.