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As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord

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Joshua 24:14 - Joshua 24:14 (KJV) Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD.


Choices are made daily by us, sometimes small choices, may be very important ones. Today I was talking with my wife about how things turn upon choices people made. For instance, when I was planning to get married, I was planning to get married to this young lady who sits by me here, and that was 46 years ago on the 14th of December. I asked her father if he will agree with me to marry his daughter. Her father was a big man, 6ft tall, 220lbs he had big hands while I was a little fellow. I asked him will you give me permission to marry your daughter. I was sitting with him alone and he said am going to ask you couple of questions. I wondered what he was going to ask me now. He said you are old enough to get married, that was alright and that she was old enough to know a man, then those choices he would leave with us. But he was going to ask me a question, do you have the intentions of staying here in Oregon, of staying in the gospel or do you plan to move back to your place of living, that was 2000 miles south east of Portland in Tennessee? “Do you intend to marry and go back there or willing to stay in Portland?” I said I have no intentions of going back to Tennessee. I have found the Gospel and it was 2½ years after I got saved. I have known the Gospel and have learnt the gospel and have the intentions of staying here. That is fine, I just wanted you to say it with your own mouth that you are going to stay here and stay in the church. It was not hard for me to say because I hade made the decision earlier. Either I marry or not, I still wanted to stay in Apostolic Faith, I wanted to stay where the Gospel is; hence it was not hard to answer that question. He could ask me any other question about my intentions of the Gospel; I would have been able to answer him without any embarrassment because my decision had been made earlier.


As for me I would serve the Lord, I was alone until then, and after we were married, we have 3 children, 7 grandchildren. When we first had 2 children, I worked for the Local Government, and I also did book keeping as part time. I did that for a restaurant and a Christian bookstore. At the Christian bookstore there was a plaque and on the plaque there were the following words – ‘As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.’ The decision to serve the Lord was settled long time ago. She had served the Lord longer than I did, but we have our minds made up that we would have a Christian home, a Christian family and the Lord gave it to us. All other decisions in our life resolved round that important decision that is as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. 


Joshua said this very easily because He and Caleb were among the 12 spies that were sent to spy the land of Canaan. They came back with the report saying that they could take the land because God had given it to us. The other 10 said they were afraid that they looked like grasshoppers in the sight of the people. We were not able to do it. But Joshua and Caleb had made up their mind that if God said it, that was enough. I can tell you tonight that if you have held on to the promise of God and God had definitely given it to you and you know it is based upon the Bible, you can be sure that as God had given the promise to Moses, and Joshua and Caleb believed it, you can believe the promise of God also. Some 40 years later, Joshua an Caleb were with Moses, they came to a spot, Caleb said Joshua 14: 6-8 –

Joshua 14:6-8 (KJV) 14:6 Then the children of Judah came unto Joshua in Gilgal: and Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite said unto him, Thou knowest the thing that the LORD said unto Moses the man of God concerning me and thee in Kadeshbarnea. 7 Forty years old was I when Moses the servant of the LORD sent me from Kadeshbarnea to espy out the land; and I brought him word again as it was in mine heart. 8 Nevertheless my brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt: but I wholly followed the LORD my God.

He came back to give that report because it was in my heart. He knew, because God had promised to give them the land flowing with milk and honey. It was to be a blessed land, the land was formerly run by giants that would domineer and dominate them but they knew God. Joshua and Caleb knew that God had promised it and would give it to them and he would do it. Caleb said 40 years later, that as it was in my heart then so it is my heart yet. He stood shoulder to shoulder with Joshua and later on Joshua could say to the children of Israel and give them a solemn charge that they would remember what the Lord had done, they would not forget the miracles and benefits that were showered upon them many times. He charged upon them not to forget it. He said I want to find out now as I have made my choice and want to challenge you to the same thing and if you do, you will be blessed, if you decide to keep your decisions. If you say your word and keep your word, if you promise and then fulfill it, then God will keep you and you will be able to enjoy all the blessings of God. So he spoke with the spirit.


If someone wants to teach me something, I want that person to have had knowledge and experience of the thing. For instance, if some one wants to teach you how to fly an aero plane, then you will go to the airport and register in a school to take lessons from the school. You do not want someone who does not know about aero planes who would ruin you, rather you want someone who learned the lessons on how to fly an aero plane. You want something in the Gospel; you want those who are praying, those whose prayers have been answered by God. There are people saying that the day of miracles are past, no more miracles, do you know who they are? They are those who never experienced miracles. Hence do not learn about miracles from someone who never saw one.  Do not let some one teach you about aero plane that never saw one. If you want to know whether God will heal a disease, talk to someone who had been there.


As for me and mine house we will serve the Lord is a good place to start. Start and continue in it, begin and then keep at it. Many people will start on the way, they are called to prayer in the church, they say I am feeling better, they go away feeling that they have been to church so they can pray, that does not mean they will come back and pray again, but if they do pray and keep their promise then search for the truth, because they want to know the truth. The Bible says that if any man will do the will of God he shall know of the doctrines. That proves to us that those that are confused are those that will not do the will of God, They will not do the will of God, they cannot believe, they cannot trust God, they cannot understand, they have problems, because if they do the will of God they shall know of the doctrines. There is something in me that says show me and I will do it, speak the word to me and I will obey it, put me on the start line, I will persevere that I may finish the course.


One of the old time ministers in Portland was Jack Robbins. His testimony is in the booklet - From the cattle ranges of Idaho. Jack Robbins was a big man. Before he came to Portland, God told him about his sins, and he went to a church and prayed. He got saved. However he did not have any boldness and the church he went then did not believe him and the church did not believe in sanctification or baptism of the Holy Ghost. He had not heard about these experiences until he came to Portland. When the gospel came to Portland he was there in 1906 and he attended the first camp meting, he heard the testimonies about sanctification and Holy Ghost, he believed it and he prayed and God gave him the sanctification and baptism of the Holy Ghost at the first camp meeting. Later on he started preaching and he preached with power. When he started to preach, he spoke gently, then after few minutes, he would get God’s help, he would start to speak with power and anointing. One thing he said was he takes a real living fish to go against the flow of a river. A dead fish goes wherever the river flows, so also many people, wherever the river flows they just flow along and which ever way the world goes they think they ought to go. If you have a life in Christ, you have a different life, a life of contentment, you have something behind you that says I can and will, and I shall go against the stream, I shall persevere. Br Jack Robbins also said if you finish this course every one will know that you have started. If you finish this Christian race, every one will know you had a beginning. So a beginning is very important and as for me and mine house we will serve the Lord is a good way to start and a good place to finish when that Christian life is at the point of death and the Lord comes for you, will heaven say of you, he had kept the faith, he kept his word, he had finished his course. We have that testimony. We are not Joshua, Moses, Peter and Paul but God is no respecter of persons, He will help each one of us in our own place and family. He will keep us as the apple of his eye if we choose the Lord and say my mind is made up and I am going through. But if you slip by the wayside and look back, oh what a failure. When I was a little boy, I grew in the farm, we ploughed the ground, it was a very hard work, nevertheless, I knew what the scriptures means when it says ‘Any man putting his hands on the plough and looking back is not fit for the kingdom’. The reason for that is if you are ploughing the field with a small plough, and animals pulling it and you look back you are likely to be ploughing the plants you were meant to be cultivating. You might hit a rock or roots in the ground and the plough might grab your hand and kick you on the side. This had happened to me, so that illustration is good for me. We are to keep our hands on the plough. Any man putting his hands on the plough means any starting to serve God. If he starts to serve God and turn to look back from where he came, he is not fit. He is supposed to look ahead. Let us go all the way.


Joshua told the Israelites of the people on the other side of the flood that were in sin, they did not respond to the preaching of Noah and therefore perished in the flood. So also the Jews when they were crossing the Red Sea, God opened the Red Sea and the Jews worked on dried ground, but the Egyptians were slained, but God lead the Jews out through with His mighty power hand. He referred to that when they were on the other side of the Red Sea, when they were hungry, he fed them with manna, when they were thirsty he gave them water from the rock. God sent serpent among them to bite them, a bite of death when they turned away and murmured and complain, some of them say let us go back to Egypt, we do not want to perish in the wilderness. God did not bring them to the wilderness to kill them. No, he promised to bring them out with a high and mighty hand. This is the promise that he gave to you and it was only Joshua and Caleb that came through. All the other complainers, 20 years and above that were there and that turned their back upon God’s promise perished in the wilderness. Who wants to go round and round in the wilderness for 40 years? None, they went round and round in the wilderness for 40 years but we want to go straight through. Pray one day and not pray the next day, then pray next week and not pray the following week will take us no where but we want to make our mind up and say as for me and mine house we will serve the Lord. But you must decide to do this; you must make up your mind. Sometimes that is very hard, there are many reasons people have for not deciding to serve the Lord. May be they have family connections, business, they have different obligations for one thing or the other and they are bogged down. But whatever the cost we will serve the Lord. It is a good thing to say that I am not going to part with God, I am going to listen because I know that God does not give us bondage, but gives full free salvation and he abundantly pardons, gives grace for every hour. If you want to go to heaven you better decide, I am going to do it tonight. If you can will it, then do it. Joshua did it and said As for me and my house I will serve the Lord and stay with that, you will have life full of blessing. God word is sure. It is settled for this people, it will be alright with us too.


Why not tonight and let God settle this for you? He will make you a new creature and give you power to go and live an overcoming life, gives you victory and a hope of heaven that is salvation, if you have not got that, why don’t you decide tonight and say I will do it.

By Rev L C Carver

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