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Burnett Ministries 

P.O. Box 20643

Greensboro, NC 27420

USA

Phone: 336-681-2973

Email: [email protected]

Is it Proper to Call Earthly Men Father? 

Is it Proper to Call Earthly Men Father? #1

This question was asked recently, and I felt that many others may not understand what Jesus is saying in Matthew 23:8-12. There is another scripture that says something quite different, which will be shared after the first part, in the next couple of paragraphs.


Let’s get started with Jesus speaking of Pharisees, who wanted to be the big wheels; they wanted a place of honor. They did their deeds to be seen of others.


The Pharisees were legalistic hypocrites and they told others to do what they did not do themselves. In other words, they had the people burdened down.


They wore phylacteries (a small case with scriptures in it) and fringes (tassels) on the border of their garments (robes) to make themselves look more spiritual. It was not the clothes that Jesus was displeased with; it was their high-minded mentality. They used the names as spiritual titles to exert spiritual authority over people.


This is a word of caution to those who have certain positions; no one is better than the other. All of us brothers/sisters in Christ are called to serve with humility (1 Peter 5:1-8). Those who exalt themselves will be humbled (to be brought down or low).


Is it Proper to Call Earthly Men Father? #2

The Word of God never contradicts itself. That is the reason I say scripture needs to relate to another scripture/s; one scripture is supported by another. It is also good to know the history, look at the verses before and after the scriptures you are reading.


These are scriptures where Paul called Timothy his son (1 Corinthians 4:15-17, 1 Timothy 1:2, 1 Timothy 1:18, 2 Timothy 2:1).

Even though Paul was old enough to be Timothy’s father, he could not have been, because Timothy’s biological father was Greek (Acts 16:1).


We are allowed to call different people father in the ministry (spiritual father or mother), we can call them mentors, etc., who have biblical and life experiences which definitely means they are further along in their walk (more mature) than we are.


God/Christ is the only One who have the right to titles. God is the Father of us born-again believers (Matthew 5:16, Matthew 6:9); holy and reverend is His name (Psalm 111:9). So, anyone who call the pope father, is equating him with God.


Since titles should not be used for people in ministry, the five-fold ministry gifts which consist of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers are also synonymous with overseers, elders or bishops, and they are the administrative offices (Ephesians 4:11, Acts 14:23, 1 Timothy 3:1).


Christ is the only One who is head of the church (Ephesians 2:20, Colossians 1:18). Although the church was founded on the apostles and prophets, with Christ being the Chief Cornerstone (Ephesians (2:20).


Therefore, religious lordship or domination over another human being has no place in the body of Christ.


Coming next week - Back to the Revival and What Jesus Will Give the Churches that are Obedient (some scriptures from Revelation, chapters 2-3)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Fasting the Biblical Way (Part 4) Health Issues and Consensual Fasting for Those Who are Married

This is the last of a four-part series pertaining to prayer and fasting.


Health Issues

It is known that there could be a danger in fasting for those with health issues. Example: a diabetic has a regimented diet, and he or she also takes medicines at certain times during the day. Therefore, wisdom is necessary. I encourage people who really desire to fast, to do it in-between meals. God is looking at your motives.


There are some in the medical field who will tell you to fast before taking certain tests (no food after midnight prior to the test and very minimal amount of water with RX, if it must be taken). These people know what fasting means; to do without food for a certain time. The results from the tests are more effective; this helps them to identify with the problem.

Example: Personal fasts will reveal to us what needs to be changed in our lives.


Consensual Fasting for the Married (1 Corinthians 7:2-5).

This is a type of fast that is rarely brought up, yet it is important and should never be ignored.


If one spouse does not consent to a fast, it should not be done. The husband has power over his wife’s body and the wife has power over her husband’s body. Therefore, if one does not respect the other’s wish, the fasting is of no effect.


Why does Paul talk about consensual fast? Food is an absolute necessity for the human body, even though water is necessary, it is not as desirable as the food. Guess what else is desirable among married couples? Sex! God created a marriage between a male and female to be enjoyable and sex is an awesome blessing for those God calls into marriage.


Paul words it like this: Do not deprive one another except by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer and fasting. There definitely has to be an agreement until the number of days the fast is over. After you have agreed upon a time for the fast to end, sex should be resumed, so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.


What happens if the husband and wife have mutual consent and fast together for seven full days (24/7)? Can you contain yourselves for seven days? What if you are fasting each day for X number of days from 6 AM - 6 PM?

You should be able to contain yourselves during those twelve hours.


What happens when you get weak and feel as though you cannot endure for that time period?

This is my experience: The devil will do everything possible to keep you from fasting, because he knows it is going to make a difference in your life and the life of someone else. Once you have committed yourself to fast because you are wanting a change, God is your helper; His all-sufficient grace is available.


When Satan starts tempting you, use the Word of God, just as Jesus did (Matthew 4:1-11).


Next: “Is it Proper to Call an Earthly Man Father?”


Coming next week - Back to the Revival and What Jesus Will Give the Churches that are Obedient (some scriptures from Revelation, chapters 2-3)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Fasting the Biblical Way (Part 3)

I want to remind the readers that prayer and fasting are for different reasons. Listed below are instances of prayer and fasting.


Examples of Fasting

Moses was with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he did not eat bread or drink water. And he wrote on the tables the words of the covenant, the ten commandments (Exodus 34:28)

Result: Moses received instructions from the Lord for the children of Israel to abide by (Exodus, chapter 35).


King Jehoshaphat had a made a bad decision that displeased the Lord; he repented. An alliance (to unite) of nations decided to march against Judah. Jehoshaphat sought the Lord and asked all Judah to fast. A word was sent that the Lord would deliver Judah without a fight.

Result: Jehoshaphat went out with the praise singers leading the way, singing praise to the Lord. The alliance of nations turned against each other and began to kill each other. The men of Judah spent three days collecting the spoils that were abandoned by their enemies (2 Chronicles 20:1-25).

This great victory over the enemy came through prayer and fasting.


Esther: The Jews were on the verge of destruction, because of the evil conspiracy of Haman, one of the King’s advisors. Esther would have to literally risk her life, it was dangerous for her to approach the king without being summoned first, so she called a fast (prayer was not mentioned). Esther told someone to gather all the Jews who were in Shushan, to fast for her; neither eat nor drink for three days and three nights, and that she and her maids would also fast. Since it was not appropriate for her to go to the king, according to the law, Esther was going to risk going to the king even if she perished (Esther 4:16).

Result: Esther found favor with her husband the king, and when she went to him on behalf of her people, the Jews, the king also gave them favor and Mordecai, Esther’s cousin, had a place of honor. Haman, the king’s advisor had gallows built to have Mordecai hung on, but Haman was hung on the same gallows.


Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil forty days and forty nights (Luke 4:1-13).

Result: When Jesus came from the wilderness, He was empowered by the Holy Spirit for public ministry (Luke 4:14- chapter 5).


Paul and Barnabas: As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, separate Paul and Barnabas for the work which I have called them. And when they had fasted and prayed and laid their hands on them, they sent them away (Acts 13:2-3).

Result: So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they departed to Seleucia, and from there they sailed to Cyprus (Acts 13:4).


The Word of God does not specify how long anyone should fast unless they are led by the Holy Spirit. For those who have a desire to fast to draw closer to the Lord, or if they have a specific need, you have the freedom to make the choice.


Results of Fasting

Fasting helps to build (strengthens) one’s faith (Matthew 17:14-21), there is empowerment. It breaks yokes, undo heavy burdens, loose the bands of wickedness, that the oppressed will go free (Isaiah 58:6).


Next: Fasting the Biblical Way (Part 4) Health Issues and Consensual Fasting in Marriage

You really don’t want to miss this one!


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett



Fasting the Biblical Way (Part 2)

I was going another way with this message but was led to continue writing about what happens when the church fasts properly, from Isaiah 58:6-12. Is this not the fast that I have chosen? To loose the bands of wickedness, to undo heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free, that you break every yoke?


It is to share bread with the hungry, help the homeless not to be homeless, by bringing them into your house (same as church), clothe the naked. This is how our lights so shine (Matthew 5:16). When people are being ministered to, they are freed from those heavy yokes and God is glorified.


I know we are living in modern times, but does that change the Word of God? The principle of helping those without is still the same. How can we fast and pray, and think we are pleasing God if we are not being obedient to His Word? How do we think God is going to answer our prayers?


Although there are many, many outreach ministries that minister in various ways to meet the needs of others, and although many churches have outreach ministries, what about those inside the house of God who are suffering lack?


The Word of God tells us to do good to all people, especially to those of the household of faith (Galatians 6:10). The Word of God talks about the sin of partiality in the church by disregarding those who have less (James 2:1-8).


The Word of God commands those who are rich in this world not to be arrogant (conceited), nor put their hope in wealth, which is uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy.


That they do good, be rich in good works, ready to distribute, ….. laying up for themselves a good foundation…(1 Timothy 6:17-19). This does not mean just for the rich to enjoy, but also for others to enjoy. Verse 10 says the love of money is the root of all evil. The truth is, if they can’t give it up, this exposes their heart.


Perhaps this was happening in five of the churches in Revelation, chapters 2-3. The people had left their first love. At the beginning of the church age, no one was lacking. All the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had with the others (Acts 2:44).


This is one of the major reasons, there is very little evidence of a dynamic supernatural movement in the body of Christ. How can the Holy Spirit move dynamically when the church is grieving and quenching Him (Ephesians 4:30, 1 Thessalonians 5:19)?


Let’s balance the scales: There are people who live above their means (been there and done that) and need to learn how to budget their money. I thank God for His grace and mercy, and how He helped me, without having to beg.


What about those who didn’t cause themselves to get in that predicament? According to the Word of God, the church is commanded by God to take on that responsibility and with the right motives.


Jesus cautioned the disciples about wrong motives: don’t do for others and sound your horn; do it in secret and God will reward you openly; don’t pray like hypocrites to be seen of others; don’t use vain repetitions as the heathen do, for they think they will be heard for their much speaking (Matthew 6:1-7). In other words, they had the wrong motives; they were trying to impress people.


Jesus tells the disciples and us to fast – He said when you fast, not if you fast, do not be like the Pharisees (Matthew 6:16-18). He told the disciples and us not to be as hypocrites, having sad countenances and disfigured their faces, to give of appearance to others that they were/are fasting. They have their rewards. Jesus told them to anoint their heads and wash their faces (Matthew 6:16-18). The whole point is not to appear unto others that you are fasting.


If fasting and prayer are not being done according to the Word of God, the entire purpose is defeated. The church certainly needs a revival!


Next: Fasting the Biblical Way (Part 3) 


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Fasting the Biblical Way (Part 1)

This message was posted four years ago, and because the question has come up as to what a true fast is, I did some more searching and revised the original message. I am sure that those of you who have matured in your walk understand that none of us have arrived, and there is so much more to learn. That is why we are commanded to study regularly to learn about all the wonderful nuggets that are in the Word of God.


Since there has been a lot of controversy about fasting, let’s see what the Word of God says about it.

Fasting is not a trend through the traditions of men, nor should it be done ritualistically.


What is a Fast?

The Greek word -nesteuo means to abstain from (do without) food. The Hebrew word -tsuwm means to cover over (the mouth). In any case, both Hebrew and Greek meanings are the same.


Length of Time

It depends on how long the person or persons are led to fast or have a desire to fast.


Reasons for Fasting

Can be individually or corporately, to see a change (deliverance, healing, etc.) in the lives of others and ourselves.

One can have a desire to pray and fast to become more intimate with Christ; it builds our faith, strengthens us and keep us from being fearful of, or intimidated by demons. 


When Jesus cast a demon out of a child, the disciples asked Him why they were not able to cast out demons. Jesus answered and said, because of your lack of faith (unbelief)…He told them this could only happen through prayer and fasting (Matthew 17:14-21).


As I pray and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal things to me when I am studying; I also read what some trusted scholars are writing. From these particular verses, I paraphrased some of John McArthur’s footnotes that were in line with what I was thinking. I don’t depend on a book, but it can be a helpful tool to use if it lines up with the Word of God.


Called by God, with the right motive: (Isaiah 58:6-8)

Israel was going through the motions; their appearance of righteousness was pretense. Their fasting was only half-hearted. It was an outward ritual and a false pretense. Penitence (sorrow) over sin and consequent humility, disconnecting from sin and oppression of others, feeding the hungry and acting humanely toward those in need.


God was telling Israel about their state of being, including their wrong motives; it is referenced, connected, and support the scripture about the Pharisees fasting and praying to be seen of others (Matthew 6:16-18).


When Israel learned the proper way to fast, she would enjoy the blessings of salvation. The New Testament principle is the same: When the church learns how to fast properly, many people will be blessed; this is a major way of letting our lights so shine that people will see our good works and glorify our Father in heaven (Matthew 5:16).


Next: Fasting the Biblical Way Part – 2


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Laodicea ~ the Lukewarm Church (Revelation 3:14-22)

Brief history of Laodicea: It was known to be the wealthiest of the seven cities; known for its banking industry; manufacturer of wool; and a medical school that produced eye-salve. But the city always had a problem with its water supply.


To the angel/messenger/pastor of the church of Laodicea write:

These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation. I know your deeds and you are neither hot nor cold. I wish you were one or the other.


Because you are lukewarm, I will spit (vomit) you out of My mouth (that’s how distasteful they were). Hot is to have a fervor for the Lord; cold means to have no fervor for Him. Being lukewarm was the in between, or halfhearted efforts. Jesus said they needed to be either hot or cold.


You say, ‘I am rich, I have no need of anything’. But you do not realize you are wretched, pitiful, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from Me, gold refined in the fire, so that you may be rich (this means doing business with God on His terms)


and white clothes to wear so you can cover your shameful nakedness (the city was wealthy and had a prosperous textile industry, but the people needed to have on righteous garments (Revelation 19:7-8)


and salve to put on your eyes so you can see. They had a Medical school of Ophthalmology; were able to help others to see physically, but they needed spiritual eye-salve so they could see themselves.


Example: A doctor trying to help someone else regain their health and he needs to regain his own health. Self-Examination is needed (2 Corinthians 13:5). A saying back in the day: “Physician, heal yourself”. Even still, it was like some used to say: “Don’t do as I do, do as I say do”. That is hypocrisy! 

The Apostle Paul said “Be followers of me, even as I follow Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1).


The people were self-sufficient or self-reliable and self-conceited, which was dangerous; they left Christ out of the picture. He was not where their focus was (Proverbs 3:5-6).


They were well educated, therefore, their knowledge puffed them up with pride (1 Corinthians 8:1)

The church considered herself spiritually rich, when indeed she was spiritually bankrupt.


Jesus was telling them how much He loved them and desired to have the right kind of relationship and fellowship with the church of Laodicea. He loved them and us so much that He chastens them/us (Hebrews 12:5-8).


I don’t know about you, but I would rather be in a church like Smyrna, who was in poverty physically, but they were spiritually rich (Revelation 2:9-10), than to be in a church like Laodicea who thought they were rich, but were spiritually poor, wretched and miserable.


Most importantly, is being where the Holy Spirit leads us. We are in different places to make a difference, or to help change things for the better.


I will come back with what Jesus will give the churches who are obedient, after the message about the church being revived through praying, fasting, and repentance.


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Church at Philadelphia ~ The True/Faithful Church (Revelation 3:7-13)

Up until this point you have read about five of the seven churches Jesus told John to write to. So far Jesus had something against three of them and He condemned them, or He commended them; but to the church of Philadelphia, there was only commendation.


I am giving an overview of the church at Philadelphia


Jesus said this to the angel/pastor/messenger: I know your works; behold I have set before you an open door and no man can shut it, for you have little strength, and have kept my Word and have not denied My name.


Because the church was pleasing to Christ, He would make those who said they were Jews, but they really were of the synagogue of Satan to worship at their feet, so the ungodly ones would know that He loved His saints.


Although there were unsaved people in all the churches, this pastor was faithful and so was the congregation of born-again believers, regardless if there were some unsaved people in the church. Jesus even said some were them were of the synagogue of Satan. Some of the people among them pretended to be saved. God knows who is who.


I believe the born-again believers lived according to Jesus’ standard; they walked the walk and talked the talk; they were different from the worldly people (2 Corinthians 6:14-18); they did not let corrupt (vulgar) communication come from their mouths (Ephesians 4:29); they dressed in an appropriate manner. (1 Timothy 2:9-10) and so on.


Because you had kept the word of My patience, I will also keep you from the hour of temptation which shall come upon all the world to try them that dwell on the earth. The hour of temptation is the seven-year tribulation time period.


The children of God will not go through the seven-year tribulation period (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, 1 Corinthians 15:53-58). However, the ones in the church who were not born-again will go through the seven-year tribulation.


Even though they only had a little strength, they were faithful, and were told (encouraged) to hold to what little strength you they had.


This is to encourage you. Model the church of Philadelphia and you will hear Jesus say: “Well done, good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:21, 23). God is requiring our faithfulness; to be reliable and trustworthy of what He has given us to manage on this earth, which is our stewardship.


Next: Laodicea ~ The Lukewarm Church (Revelation 3:14-22).


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Church at Philadelphia ~ The True Church (Revelation 3:7-13) - Prerequisite (Requirement)

As we move forward into 2020, there are some things that are crucial for spiritual growth pertaining to the children of God. When Jesus told John to write to the churches, the message to most of them were dual fold. John was writing to the saved and the lost, because everybody in the church was and is not saved/born-again. Therefore, the messages are written to benefit the saved and the lost.


For one to grow in the Word of God, there has to be intensive study about the principles. For instance, if you are not maturing, then you are shifting on the foundation of Christ. In my many years of walking with the Lord and becoming more intimate with Him, I have not seen much spiritual growth in the body of Christ. It is shameful for any child of God to remain on milk.


It is also pride that makes one think they are further along in their walk than they are.


Let’s talk about principles and how important they are. When you were born, you had a full body, but it was small and had to be developed; you started off on milk, as you grew you were able to digest soft food and eventually you were strong enough to eat meat, which belongs to them who have been developed in their walk (Hebrews 5:14). By the way, you had to crawl before you walked.


When you were old enough to get some education, there was a process. No skipping grades unless you were a genius and even with that, something was missing. Materials used in school were books pertaining to whatever grade you were in. Seventh grade material is not used for first grade students.


The same is with the spiritual growth; babies in Christ cannot handle the Word of God effectively. On that note, the Bible is the basis of growth. Even when other books are used, one cannot grow. Books can encourage us just as preaching the Word of God is encouraging and edifying, but it takes the principles being taught for one to grow; principles are sustaining. 


Jesus preached repentance (Matthew 4:17) and He taught principles -The Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-12) or the blessed attitudes.

Example: Blessed are they who hunger and thirst after righteous, for they shall be filled. Hungering means a desire to do what is pleasing to God; this results in tremendous blessings. When you have a hunger to draw closer to God, your life will benefit many others and they too will want to draw closer God.


The necessity of writing this first, is for you to know what a true church consists of.

Some scriptures that relate to spiritual growth:


Desire the sincere milk of the Word – 1 Peter 2:2


Grow in grace and knowledge – 2 Peter 3:18


Learn the first principles (elementary) Hebrews - 5:14


The Five-Fold Ministry Elders help with spiritual growth (Ephesians 4:11-16)


Search the scriptures for yourself, not just take what someone else is saying as the truth – Acts 17:11


Study to show yourself approved to God – 2 Timothy 2:15


Trust God and do not lean to your own understanding - Proverbs 3:5-6


Next: The Church at Philadelphia ~ The True/Faithful Church (Revelation 3:7-13)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Body of Christ (Church) Needs a REVIVAL

A revival is an awesome way to start the year 2020. The churches need to be revived and focus on their first LOVE.


Many of you read my messages about what Jesus told John to write to the seven churches in Asia, which is also for the churches today.


So far, I wrote about five of the seven churches; four of those five churches had in one way or the other compromised their spiritual values and Jesus was telling them that they had lost their first LOVE. In other words, these churches needed a revival.


Before going to the next two churches, there is a need to explain what a revival is and how it should be repeated at certain intervals.

Because we as children of God are creatures of habit, we sometimes revert back into our old ways; this is why we need to get back on course, and a revival is one of the ways to help us.


What is a revival?


A revival is for the children of God to come out of any situation they were involved in that kept them from having intimacy with God; to turn away from or to have a change of heart. This also means they have fallen from grace; it could be for a short period of time or it could last a long time. From my own experience, the longer one does not deal with sin, the longer it takes to get back on track.


The revival can be for an individual, or it can be for the entire church who may have compromised. When John wrote to the church, the pastor was addressed first and then then the church as a whole was addressed. Jesus told them to repent (Revelation, chapters 2-3).


These scriptures are the results of repentance:


If my people who are called by My name shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and forgive their sins and heal their land (2 Chronicles 7:14). Even though this is an Old Testament scripture relating to the Jews, the principle is the same. 


The New Testament supports, connect and relate to the Old Testament; God is talking to the church (His children). If you confess your sins, He is faithful and just to forgive you and cleanse you from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).


A desire for and the urgency of a revival was placed in my spirit after I was led to write about false gods and idol worship in the Old Testament with God’s people. 


The Holy Spirit prompted me to continue to write messages pertaining to false gods and idol worship in the New Testament, which is the church age, beginning in the books of Acts. 


The Holy Spirit led me to the book of Revelation about the churches in the first three chapters, where I am now.


I am overjoyed that the revival is beginning to take place globally. The first of the year is an awesome time to start a REVIVAL!!!


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett


Clear Vision in 2020

2019 has been an awesome year; I don’t have to wait until 2020 for Father God to do a new thing. He does it over and over. As a matter of fact, each morning there are new mercies (Lamentations 3:22-23), just as the Israelites had new (fresh) manna each day (Exodus 16:4).


In the Apostle Paul’s writing, he said to forget those things that were behind and press toward the mark of the high call of God in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:13-14). This does not mean to forget everything, but whatever was holding you back, let it go.


One cannot receive fresh manna and so on, by holding on to the old. It does not mean the experience cannot be used to help someone else; there is a reason for everything we go through in life. It not only benefit us (helps with growth - 1 Peter 5:10), but it also benefits whoever the Lord places in our lives. To have a testimony, one must go through tests (trials, persecutions, etc.) – (2 Timothy 3:12).


It is written in Isaiah 43:18-19: Behold I will do a new thing…..Who is the new thing being done to? In the Old Testament, it was for the Israelites who had struggled and were oppressed, God told them He was doing a new thing; bring them to new places (make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert).


The principle is the same for us. There is nothing new to God/Jesus (Ecclesiastes 1:9), who created all things (Genesis, chapter 1, Colossians 1:16-17), but He wants to do something new/different in our lives.


As we approach the year of 2020, let’s ask God to help us to be open to see with 2020 vision, a Rhema (personal) Word He is revealing for us. The new thing in one person’s life may be different from what is new in another person’s life. Yet, He does something new in each of His children’s lives; our relationship with Jesus Christ is personal.


Example of a new thing in my life: I could not see clearly, even with eyeglasses and needed cataract surgery, now I don’t need to wear glasses at all. Spiritual concept: When we don’t see (read) the Word of God with a clear understanding, it gets distorted (a false perception or it is twisted). With that being said, it takes supernatural lens to remove whatever is clouding our understanding.


No resolutions for me, since God is the only One who knows what will take place in my life in 2020.


No predictions or declarations for me. I just want to continue to speak life to the vision (Proverbs 18:21) He gave me in 2019 and wait for it to come to pass in 2020 (Habakkuk 2:2-4), as I co-labor with God to accomplish His will for His glory (1 Corinthians 3:9).


I pray that you will see clearly the new thing that God will do in your lives daily as you purpose in your heart to do His will (Romans 12:1-2).


May you have 2020 insight and eyesight!


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Gifts and Calling - Can the Gifts Be Lost?

In Romans, chapter 11, Paul was writing to the Jews who had rejected Christ as their Messiah (John 1:11); but God never rejected them; even so, salvation was given to the Gentiles (Acts 28:28, Romans 1:16, Romans 10:12, Galatians 3:28). Therefore, this chapter applies to all who are born-again.


Many Jews have received Christ the Messiah as their Savior. However, as a nation they rejected Him, and in the great tribulation, their eyes will be opened to who the Antichrist is. He will sit on the throne in Jerusalem and declare himself to be God (2 Thessalonians 2:4), and they will realize who the true Messiah is (Revelation 7:4-14).


Now to the question “Can the Gifts Be Lost?

God did not save us to go straight to heaven; He left us on this earth to build His Kingdom. How do we build the Kingdom of God? We are to let our lights so shine that people will see our good works and glorify our Father in heaven (Matthew 5:13-16).


We have been given  gifts to build His Kingdom to edify/encourage each other (1 Peter 4:10), and God will be glorified by our good works (Ephesians 2:10).


I have heard this statement for many years: “If you don’t use it, you will lose it”


That is contrary to what the Word of God says. He said the gifts and calling are without repentance or irrevocable; meaning whatever God gives, He does not take back (Romans 11:29). God does not change His mind (Numbers 23:19, Hebrews 13:8, James 1:17).

It is impossible for the gifts to be lost; if that was true, then people can lose their salvation (Ephesians 4:30). 


The spiritual gifts accompany salvation. This is what will happen if the gifts are not functioning; they will lie dormant (not being used), just as a person who has fallen from grace is of no effect to the Kingdom of God (Galatians 5:4), so it is with the gifts.


When a gift is lying dormant, it is being buried. Every child of God must give account of his or her stewardship, which means what and how we have managed what God has entrusted to us (Matthew 25:14-30, 2 Corinthians 5:10).


It is so sad that many born-again believers do not know what their gifts are. The gifts come with salvation. In other words, once you became born-again, the gift was there whether it was recognized or not. It is important for every child of God to discover their gift/s, learn and understand them, and flow in the gifts.


The devil does not want the children of the Most-High God to know that, so he keeps them in ignorance, which is bondage or enslavement.

I am called to help others to know what their specific assignment (gift/s) is, either by way of the internet, telephone, text message and so on. 


There are many who know what their gift/s are, but because of improper training, they are out of balance. Others think they know, but there is no evidence of the gift/s. The right kind of knowledge is powerful and proper training equals effectiveness.


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Was Christ in Your Christmas?​

Now that Christmas is over to some people, Christ who should be the real reason for every season, was left out by many people according to what I saw. This is grievous to the Holy Spirit and to me.


Why?

When Xmas is used, who is being acknowledged? It means that CHRIST is not the One being celebrated. That is deception from the devil or Satan/Santa.


Any time anyone who considers themselves to be born-again and uses Santa Claus in any way form or fashion to represent Christmas, that’s the same as those who X Jesus Christ out of Christmas.


I noticed so many people sending Christmas greetings out in various ways. I will not give specifics and single any one person out. Even though Jesus spoke to the pastor/messenger, also called angel who are God’s messengers, He also addressed the church.


I am asking you to study the history about Santa Claus/Satan. The Spirit of God prompted me to write messages pertaining to the churches of today, what John wrote to the churches then and for now. There were commendations, but also warnings about compromising; more is coming in 2020.


One of the ways a specific church named Pergamos compromised, was by embracing the doctrine of the Nicolaitans who followed Nicolas, who is also called by different names of Satan Claus, depending on the location.


When Jesus said: “Listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches”. Jesus also told them what the consequences would be if they didn’t repent. It was a serious warning given to stop embracing anything that is connected with Satan/Santa. 


Prior to the churches being addressed individually, Jesus said: Blessed are those who read the book of this prophecy (Revelation 1:3).


My brothers and sisters, this is not coming from me, it is coming from Jesus Christ, the One you profess to be your Savior and Lord. I am just writing what I am led to write to help others to be set free from the bondage of ignorance, as to who this Santa/Satan really is. Evidently many don’t know how to be set free, because so many don’t know the truth (John 8:32, 36).


I am not trying to belittle anyone, because I once was where some of you are. But I wanted to know more truths so I could become more intimate with Jesus. There is proof as to where people are in their walk with the Lord, by their actions, what they wear, and what comes out of their mouths.


Jesus said if you love Me, keep My commandments (John 14:15). His commandments are in His Word, which is His will (Romans 12:1-2). The Word of God tells us to have no other gods before Him (Exodus 20:3).


I am not advising you to make New Year resolutions, but I am encouraging you to purpose in your heart to learn more truths and become more intimate with God.


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Christmas

When I consider my life and how awesome it is to be a child of God, my mind goes back to March 15, 1982, when Jesus Christ became my Savior and Lord.


Even though the birth of Christ is being celebrated during this holiday season, the real reason I celebrate Christmas is in remembrance of Christ being born in my heart.


To those who are not born-again, will you receive this wonderful Gift of Salvation? This Gift is not wrapped in a package with bows; it is wrapped in LOVE!


God sent His only begotten Son packaged and wrapped in so much LOVE, that eventually He would die for the sins of the world and give eternal life (John 3:16).


Many people spend various amounts of money on all kinds of gifts, for just a one-day celebration; the Gift that God gives is free with no strings attached (Ephesians 2:8-9). And it does not end in a day; it lasts forever.


Usually there is an exchange of gifts; Jesus also exchanged Himself for us; He is The Gift (2 Corinthians 5:21).

How did that happen? We were lost and without hope (Ephesians 2:12); He took on our sins and gave us a new life (2 Corinthians 5:17). What an awesome exchange!


How can Jesus exchange this beautiful gift with you today? Receive it by confessing with your mouth that He is the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that He not only was born, but that He died and God raised Him from the dead so you can live eternally with Him (Romans 10:9-10).


For those of you who are born-again, you can rekindle your fire in Jesus by worshipping and praising Him for giving you the wonderful gift of Salvation.


Have a blessed day celebrating with you family and friends! And, don’t forget to celebrate Jesus!!!


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett


Serving With a Grateful Heart to Help Set the Captives Free

My service and accountability are to the Most-High God and to all those He connects me with, whether physically, by text messages, phone conversations, emails, social media and through my ministry blog – BURNETTMINISTRIES.ORG


I feel privileged to share what the Holy Spirit leads me to write. Years ago, a vision with three words came to me: Mirage, Pseudo and Rudiments.


Mirage is an optical illusion (wrongly perceived or interpreted); you see a puddle of water a little distance in front of you; once you get close to what appeared to be water, it is no longer there.


What you see is not what it is; it is thought to be one thing, but it is altogether different than what was perceived. That’s the reason we are required to study so we can rightly divide the word of truth and see spiritual truths clearly (proper interpretation) from the right translation of the Bible.


Pseudo is something false; a pretentious person. There are many false prophets and teachers (2 Peter 2:1-3), and many are being deceived (Matthew 24:11); also, false apostles (Revelation 2:1-7). If you don’t know and understand the Word of God, you can be deceived (Galatians 3:1).


Rudiments mean the first principle of a subject; the fundamental or elementary truth that is a foundation for one’s beliefs. Principle is a law that tells you how to operate under that law to bring about a desired result. Principles need to be taught in the early stages of our walk with Christ.


These are some Biblical Truths pertaining to Principles, which is called the law of sowing and reaping: Whatever a person sows, that shall he also reap (Galatians 6:7).


When one sows bountifully, he or she will reap bountifully; if one sows sparingly (being stingy), they will reap little (2 Corinthians 9:6-11). What about giving and receiving? Whatever a person gives, it shall be given to him or her. (Luke 6:38). God will use people to bless you in an extraordinary way.


Tithing is also a principle of giving and receiving (Malachi 3:8-11; Hebrews, chapter 7). The principle in Hebrews really has to be taught. Tithing in this chapter is the proof that support, connect and relate to the Old Testament principle.


The principle of sowing and reaping started with Adam and Eve. God told them to be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth and subdue it ….. (Genesis 1:28).


Do unto others as you would have them do to you (Luke 6:31). Think about how you treat others in an ungodly way; would you want someone to treat you that way? Also, if you are friendly to others, they will be friendly to you (Proverbs 18:24).


The principle of longevity is obedience: The Word of God tells children to obey their parents, so their days will be long upon the earth (Ephesians 6:1-3).


These examples are a part of our stewardship, that we are accountable to God for; it takes faith (Hebrews 11:1, 6) and obedience (Isaiah 1:19).


One pastor said: “If you work God’s principles, they will work for you”. Working the principles produce great results.


Many people are not growing because they are not working God’s principles: It could be that they are not under the right teaching; or one could be under the right teaching and may not be applying him or herself.


If you are teaching others and you are not at a level of maturity yourself, this is dangerous; it’s like the blind leading the blind and they both fall into a pit (Matthew 15:14). I strongly urge you to go back and get some main ingredients that you missed (Hebrews 5:12-14). It is like someone in the tenth grade and they only know third grade math.


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Truth Will Set You Free (John 8:32, 36)

Grace and Peace to all of you who desire to grow; that is, you are hungering and thirsting after righteousness (Matthew 6:33).


I am writing as Jesus told John to write to the seven churches in Asia. This was also meant for the church of all times, which is called the church age or the dispensation (time period) of grace.


As I was pondering some things in my heart, I felt the Holy Spirit prompted me to write this:


The church was/is being written to for encouragement, warning, protection and correction.


Encouragement was/is for those who were/are struggling and pressing forward, regardless of opposition.


Warning was/is two-fold, for the born-again to get right with God and for the unsaved to come into a relationship with Jesus Christ.


Protection was/is to guard them because of their unawareness of the enemy.


Correction was/is to make them aware of the lies and deceitfulness of the enemy outside the church and those false/influences inside the church.


You may not know this, but there are two five-fold ministry offices in operation in John’s writings; the Office of Evangelist, when John is writing to the unsaved, and the Office of the Prophet/Prophetess who corrects, protects and give warnings, which brings edification that strengthens the person in their walk..


Additionally, many don’t understand the gifts and calling, that’s why there is a misunderstanding and so much confusion in the body of Christ. On that note, for those of you who understand my two-fold office/call, pray for me.


I am praying that the eyes of your understanding will be enlightened and you will passionately seek to get all that God has for you.


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett 

A Message to the Church at Sardis, the Dead Church ~ Condemnation (Revelation 3:1-5)

When Jesus tells John to write to the church, that He is the one who has the seven Spirits and the seven stars , this does not mean that there are seven different spirits, just as God is not three different or separate persons; one God in three persons - the Trinity

.

The Holy Spirit has a seven-fold ministry: He rested upon Christ, gave Him wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord (Isaiah 11:2).

When you see the number three or seven, it means completion/perfection. Jesus Christ had the Spirit without measure (John 3:34).


Now to the church at Sardis

Verse 1: These things say He (Christ) who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars; I know your works and you have a name that you live, and you are dead. In other words, they were known for their works.


Verse 2: Be watchful and strengthen what remains, for they are about to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God. Their works were dead; the remnant was told to persevere with what was left.


Verse 3: Remember how you received and heard; hold fast and repent. If you are not watchful, I will come to you as a thief, and you will not know what hour I am coming. Do not be ashamed at His appearance (1 John 2:28). This was a popular song back in the day: “Be ready when He comes; don’t let Him catch you with your work undone”


Verse 4: You have a few names (remnant) even in Sardis who have not defiled their garments, and they shall walk with Me in white; for they are worthy. Why and how were they worthy? The marriage supper of the Lamb is come and His bride has made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed (decorated) in fine linen, clean and white, for the fine linen is for the righteousness of the saints (Revelation 19:7-8).


Verse 5: Whoever overcomes, the same shall be clothe in white raiment (garment). And I will not blot His name out of the book of life. This verse is specifically is being conveyed to the unsaved in the Church.


Overview of the church in Sardis and some churches today

The Holy Spirit is grieved (saddened) by sin in the church (Ephesians 4:24-30). We are different; therefore, we need to kill or bury our old selves (Galatians 2:20, Galatians 5:24).


He is quenched because the children of God are restricting Him from doing God’s work among them; keep the torch aflame - this has nothing to do with emotions, it’s about the burning fervor on the inside (1 Thessalonians 5:19-23).


The true church was established for spiritual growth through teaching (1 Corinthians 2:13), encouragement through the preached word (2 Timothy 4:2), gifts being operated (Romans 12:3-8, 1 Corinthians, chapter 12, Ephesians 4:11-16), and fellowshipping with each other (Hebrews 10:25) and not with the ones who are not born-again; we don’t have anything in common with them (2 Corinthians 6:14-18).


However, some people in the church are not born-again and we may not know who they are, that’s why Jesus will have the wheat (real ones) separated from the tares (fake Christians) – (Matthew 13:36-43).


There are two types of churches - The physical building is for sinners and saints. It is for the sin-sick to come and hear the Word of God and hopefully they will be born-again; it is for the children of God to come and be nourished. The other type of Church is the body of Christ - we are the church!


Coming up in January 2020: The Church at Philadelphia ~ The True Church (Revelation 3:7-13)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Church in Thyatira ~ Commendation and Warning – Part 2 (Revelation 2:23-29)

As I continue with Part 2 of the church in Thyatira, let’s recapture verse 22 so the next verse can be more clearly understood: I will cast her in into a bed and them who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.


I am reiterating that everybody in the church is not saved/born-again. Therefore, John is told to write to the born-again believers and the unsaved.


Some theologians say that the children of God will go through the tribulation, while others say the tribulation has already been. What does the Word of God say? John is writing to the church, and Jesus said He will cast her into a bed and them that commit adultery with her, into great tribulation.


This solidifies that the church will not be here during the great tribulation. John is writing to the church and telling the unsaved that they will go through the great tribulation, if they don’t repent and receive Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord.


What I perceived from getting such an awesome revelation this morning, is that many are not searching scriptures like the Lord has required; they are leaning to their own understanding.


Many theologians have mis-interpreted the Word of God. Theo means a study of God; if these people were true theologians, they would go to the Bible Book (2 Timothy 2:15), rather than reading books by someone else as a replacement for the Word of God.


Verse 23: I will kill her children with death, and all the churches shall know that I Am He who search the reins (innermost) of the heart and I will give everyone according to his/her deeds.


This connects with the Great White Throne Judgement which is for the unbelievers (Revelation 20:11-15). The Judgement Seat of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:10), is for the born-again believers, those who truly received Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior (Rom 10:9-10, Ephesians 2:8-9).


These messages to the churches in this present age are not just for those who are born-again, but they are also for the sinners in the church.


Verse 24: Jesus says this: But to you I say to the rest in Thyatira who did not receive this doctrine, who did learn what some call the deep things of Satan, I will not put this burden on you. Jesus is encouraging the true believers in the church.


Verse 25: Only hold fast to what you have until I come. When is Jesus coming? These scriptures are in one of the previous messages. He tells us to be steadfast and un-moveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:51-58). He gives us further hope of His return, and we are told to encourage each other with these words (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).


After all the messages pertaining to the churches are completed, I will write what Jesus meant when He gave a final statement to each of them.


He who has an ear, listen to what the Spirit is saying to the Churches. These words are spoken to all seven churches.


Next: A Message to the Church at Sardis (Revelation 3:1-6)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Church in Thyatira ~ Commendation and Warning – Part 1 (Revelation 2:18-22)

I want to remind the readers about the initial message that there is no perfect church, because we are imperfect people. Yet, these messages are to identify the churches today; nothing has changed and will not change until Jesus returns. Therefore, when Jesus told John to write, it was for the entire church age, which is in this dispensation or time period of grace.


Now to the church in Thyatira

This was called the corrupt church; they tolerated cult, idolatry and immorality

The church in Thyatira was small but was known to have the most things that Jesus was displeased with. The city was known for orgies and frequent idolatrous feasts.


With the church being surrounded by such a strong immoral influence, it seemed as though it would be difficult not to compromise, but all churches that belong to God are in the world, yet they don’t have to allow the worldly influence to invade the church.


The church is called to be holy (1 Peter 1:15) and to have an impact on the world by its light (Matthew 5:16), rather than accepting the world’s way. We are in the world, but not of the world (John 17:16).


Verse 18: To the angel of the church in Thyatira, these things say the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire and His feet are like fine brass – eyes like flaming fire (piecing and can see through everything) and feet like fine brass symbolizes judgement.


Verse 19: I know your works, charity and service, faith, patience and your works, and the last exceeded the first. They had increased in their ministry when it came to doing a great work.


Verse 20: Nevertheless, I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel to who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit fornication and eat things sacrificed to idols.


What is Jesus saying? He is talking about the church being influenced by that Jezebel spirit of a false prophetess, just as the real live Jezebel of the Old Testament had a powerful influence over her husband, King Ahab, who had authority over the children of Israel, which led them into idolatry and immorality (1 Kings 16:31, 1 Kings 21:25-26). The same spirit had infiltrated the church.


Verse 21: I gave her space to repent of her fornication, but she did not repent. This is not literal, but they were committing spiritual adultery. In other words, they were God’s people who chose to abandon their relationship with Him and go went whoring after other gods (Judges 2:17).


 We are married to Christ; we are His bride (2 Corinthians 11:2, Revelation 19:7-9; 21:2). When we deviate or step outside of our commitment to Him, we are committing spiritual adultery.


Verse 22: Behold (listen!) I will cast her on a bed and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation unless they repent of their deeds (wickedness).


Jesus is saying unless those in the church repent and receive Him as Savior and Lord, they will go through the great tribulation. This shows that everybody in the church was/is not saved/born-again.


As I was reading, the Spirit revealed this: There are many who say that the children of God will go through the Tribulation. This is an additional verse among others that proves the church will not go through the tribulation. Also, it was written previously that you won’t see the church anymore after Revelation, chapter four until near the end of the book.


Next: The Church in Thyatira ~ Commendation and Warning – Part 2 (Revelation 2:23-29)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett


The Church in Pergamos ~ Commendation and Warning (Revelation 2:12-18)​

Pergamos was a doctrinally compromising church; it was the center of emperor worship. Satan’s throne may refer to the 200-foot-high altar to Zeus; it was also the center of worship of Aesclepius, the god of healing whose symbol was a serpent, which to Christians symbolize Satan.


This is another way Satan imitated God. When Moses and the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they complained and the Lord sent fiery serpents and they bit people and many of them died.


Then the people repented and the Lord told Moses to make a bronze snake and put it on a pole; and so it was, if the serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the bronze snake, he lived (Numbers 21:5-9).


The bronze serpent was symbolic of Christ who took away our sins; those who looked to Christ who was lifted up on the cross, received Salvation (John 3:14).


In Pergamos, Satan was imitating God’s healing power by using the snake. Doctors use the serpent symbol as a symbol of healing.


Verse 12: To the angel of the church, these things say He who has a sharp sword with two edges; this signifies judgement. Notice that John is told to write to the pastors/messengers at each church.


So, what does that mean? It means the pastors have been given the responsibility of nurturing, feeding and protecting the flock. But God also has those in the five-fold ministry assigned as Overseers, along with the pastor. The office of the prophet/prophetess is to warn, correct and protect what the pastor does not see or is not aware of (Ephesian 4:11).


Verse 13: I know your works and where you dwell, even where Satan’s seat (throne) is, you hold fast My name, and have not denied My faith, (to carry the Gospel); even in those days where Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was slain among you where Satan dwells. Antipas was said to be the pastor who did not compromise and was martyred because he didn’t sway.


Verse 14: Even though the church was faithful and did not deny Christ, He had something against them. They allowed the people to believe in the false doctrine of Balaam, which was a stumbling block to the children of Israel (Old Testament). Similarly, the church was not a light to the people who needed salvation.


They tolerated sin in the church; closed their eyes to evil. Example: It was okay for a believer to marry an unbeliever. The Word of God tells us not to be unequally yoked with unbelievers (2 Corinthians 6:14-18).


Verse 14: I have a few things against you, because you hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to toss a stumbling block before the children of Israel (Numbers 25:1-18). They listened to the wrong people, which took them astray; there was a call for repentance and some took heed.


In other words, the church was no better than those who were a stumbling block in the Old Testament; they taught them to eat things sacrificed to idols and to commit fornication.


Verse 15: Also, the doctrine of Nicolaitans which I hate. This was what the church at Ephesus rejected, but it spilled over to Pergamos, who was embracing that doctrine.


Verse 16: Jesus said: Repent or I will come and fight against them with the sword of My mouth, which means judgement. God says His Word is sharper than any two-edged sword and it pierces (cuts both ways). His Word will purge out evil in the church.


If you think what I am doing by giving the body of Christ a warning, this is nothing compared to what Jesus will do. This is because of His love for us; God disciplines those He loves (Hebrews 12:5-11).


Next: The Church of Thyatira ~ Commendation and Warning (Revelation 2:18-29)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Church at Smyrna - Commendation (Revelation 2:8-11)

This church was suffering great persecutions, but Jesus let them know that He knew what they were going through and Jesus encouraged them to be not be afraid of what they were about to suffer; they would receive the crown of life, because they persevered under trials (James 1:12).


There are different crowns, there is a crown for every believer; depending on what your assignment (gifts and calling) is. Every born-again believer has his or her personal race to run. Paul pens it so eloquently in 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 and Philippians 4:6-8.


Verse 9 - I Know your works, tribulation and poverty (but you are rich), and I know the blasphemy of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are of the synagogue of Satan. This is different from seat of Satan in Pergamos with the Gentiles and their false doctrine.


Why did Christ say they were rich? They did not compromise their beliefs; they refused to bow down to the Emperor Caesar who was a god; they kept the standards that were required by God.


Short history- Smyrna was the seat of emperor worship (Caesar), who proclaimed to be a god. The church at Smyrna refused to worship Caesar and some were martyred; others were put in prison. They paid a high price for being in a hostile environment. Smyrna was a purged church and they were commended for their faithfulness. Anyone who did not want to sell out, could not stay there.


If we live godly, we will suffer (2 Timothy 3:12). This comes with the born-again believers walk. Christ is encouraging the church, so they can identify with His sufferings; those who suffer with Christ will also reign with Him (2 Timothy 2:12).


Christ suffered and died and so will we; some will even be martyred (killed) because of their belief. Jesus said: I am He who was dead and I am alive forevermore (Revelation 1:18); He died and rose, so shall those who die for the sake of the Gospel (John 11:25).


Regardless of their suffering, they never lost their love for Christ. As a matter of fact, they drew closer to Him.


Verse 10 – Don’t be fearful of what you will suffer; just be faithful and I will give you the crown of life (James 1:12). Blessed are the ones who suffer for righteousness sake (Matthew 5:11-12); for those who lost their lives, this is called the Martyrs crown. The five crowns are types of rewards; you will learn about them later.


Verse 11 – He who has an ear, let him/her hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches; Jesus told John to say this to all seven churches (Revelation 2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22). Emphasizing this same verse to all seven churches shows the seriousness of it; even though two of the churches were not given warnings.


I feel this was written to let all of them know that Christ wanted their undivided attention to what was being said, and not to take it lightly. They were still humans just as the others, and nobody is above or beyond falling into sin.


Thank the Lord for churches that are holding on to the standards of God and are not compromising. The church should never be considered a place to socialize; that’s the world’s way.


We are called to fellowship with each other and to be taught principles that will help us to grow in our faith. Regardless if we are living in different times, the Word of God never changes.


Footnote: Some of my notes were taken from John McArthur’s comments, and they lined up with the Word of God.


Next: The Church of Pergamos - Commendation and Warning


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Church at Ephesus ~ Commendation and Warning (Part 2) - Revelation 2:1-7

Let’s continue with the Church at Ephesus and what Jesus told John to write to them.


John starts off speaking to the angel of the Church who is the messenger/pastor.


The church was commended for recognizing false apostles and found them to be liars. They were commended for hating the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, who were followers of Nicolas, one of the seven appointed deacons who had converted to Judaism and at that time he appeared to be a follower of Christ (Acts 6:5).


Apparently, Nicolas changed his deeds and the people who followed him were called the Nicolaitans. Some historians and scholars say that Nicolas mixed his pagan beliefs with Judaism and he was not afraid to entertain or embrace new ways of thinking.


The Nicolaitans were strongly rebuked, because they led lives of unrestrained indulgence (Revelation 2:6). The church of Ephesus did not embrace the deeds of the Nicolaitans, but it spilled over into Pergamos and it became a doctrinal belief. It is important to study the Bible, and its history.


For your information, indulgence is also a part of the Roman Catholic beliefs. This includes Nicolas, who has been idolized for being the Wonder-worker (miracle worker). AND, he is called St. Nicolas, Santa Claus, Father Christmas, Kris Kringle, Saint Nick and Santa, depending on what part of the world one may be in.


With that being said, Santa Claus should never be mentioned unless it is to enlighten the church as to how the devil uses Santa Claus to imitate God Almighty. 

Example: Santa is said to live in the North Pole; God lives in the sides of the North, the city of the Great King and He’s the only One to be praised/worshipped (Psalm 48:1).


Question. How can you say you love the Lord and you are giving glory to Satan/Santa? How are you giving glory to Satan/Santa?

When you take your children to visit Santa/Satan to tell him what they want for Christmas, you are saying that Santa/Satan is the giver of gifts. My Bible says that every good and perfect gift comes from the Father of lights… (James 1:17).


Please stop lying to your children and playing those ungodly games with Satan/Santa. It is not innocent and it certainly is not cute or funny.


What about the song; “he sees you when you’re sleeping, he knows when you’re awake”? Satan/Santa is saying that he is all-knowing (omniscience). He also is saying that he is ever-present (omnipresent); that he is everywhere at the same time; Satan/Santa cannot be everywhere at the same time; he does have in-numerous demons all over the world.


Only the Lord God Almighty knows everything; the Lord God Almighty is the only One who is everywhere at the same time.


The word Satan/Santa is an anagram: a word or phrase formed by rearranging the letters of another word. By rearranging the names of Satan and Santa, you will get the same name; you may not realize, it but these two names mean the same.


Anything that is associated with Santa/Santa is not acceptable to God. For instance, wearing a Santa/Satan hat means you are still compromising.


I want to challenge every born-again believer to examine your lives and see if your love for Christ has grown cold. Reflect back when you first received Christ and your heart was on fire for Him.


Examine yourself and see what caused you to put Christ on the back-burner. Whatever got your focus off Jesus Christ who was your first love, please repent and get back on track.


Next: The Church at Smyrna - Commendation (Revelation 2:8-11)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett


The Church at Ephesus ~ Commendation and Warning - Part 1 (Revelation 2:1-7)

I am writing about the seven churches that Jesus told John the Apostle to write to. You may be in a church that is similar to at least one of these churches. Always remember that there is no perfect church, because we are not perfect.


The Church at Ephesus was in the city of Ephesus (modern day Turkey). The book of Ephesians is called by some scholars as the Royal Capstone, the Alps, or Grand Canyon, because it is considered to be a short masterpiece encouraging the children of God as to who they are, the awesome benefits and their responsibilities.


Ephesus was a city with many sinful distractions (idolatry, pagan/ungodly worship). Therefore, Paul was praying for them and encouraging the church about who they were in Christ.


Paul reminds the church to not forget they were saved by God’s grace through faith, that they did not do one thing to obtain Salvation. They were saved by the blood of Christ and He is the Chief Cornerstone, who established the church through the prophets and the apostles.


Paul encouraged the church to walk in unity; Christ had given the church the five ministry offices (Overseers) to help grow the children of God in their faith, so they would become mature and not be tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine. He urged them to live a holy life that God had required them to live and not grieve the Holy Spirit who had sealed them/us.


Paul labored to bring unity between the Gentiles and Jews. In the church of Christ many cultures become unified and live a God-honoring lifestyle due to their new life in Christ.


He encouraged the church to walk in Love, in the light, in wisdom and forgiveness. Paul taught that marriage between a husband and wife should exemplify our marriage to Christ; we are His bride.


Paul went on to give instructions to children and parents. He exhorts them/us to walk worthy of their/our call. His final exhortation was to be fully armored because of spiritual warfare and to be consistent in prayers that were necessary for them/us and himself.


Just because Paul was in jail does not mean that he was not being attacked. Wherever a child of God is, there is going to be opposing forces.


In Revelation 2:1, John is addressing the angel/messenger/pastor of each of these seven churches.

The opposing forces in the church of Ephesus were not just on the outside, but false apostles were in the church (Acts 20:29, 2 Corinthians 11:13-15). 


These scriptures also relate, support and connect with Revelation 2:2-3, where the church was commended for being aware of and rejecting false apostles and their lies, and how the church had labored and not fainted.


Nevertheless, Christ had something against the church because she had left her first love. They were told to repent or the candlestick (light) would be removed. The church had and has been called into holiness and as an example to the world (1 Peter 1:15-16). This means the church would be in danger of losing its opportunity to testify of Christ.


Next: The Church at Ephesus Revelation 2:1-7 ~ Commendation and Warning (Part 2)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett 

Introduction to the Seven Churches in the Book of Revelation, Chapters 2-3

Before we go to the seven churches, there has to be understood to the readers why Jesus Christ is instructing John to write to the churches. These churches represent all churches throughout history; it started at the beginning of the church age on the Day of Pentecost and the message is for all churches until he returns and takes us to be with Him.


Notice that the Word says: Blessed is he that reads and the ones who hear the Words of this prophecy and keep the things that are written in it, for the time is near (Revelation 1:3). So, what does this prophecy mean? In this scripture John was forthtelling, which was in the present tense and prophesying future events from chapter four to the end of Revelation.


Let’s go to chapter 1, verse 20 and what it means:

The seven stars are the seven angels who are pastors of the seven churches, and they were/are called by Christ (Ephesians 4:11).

The seven candlesticks or lampstands are the church, of whom Christ is the Head (Colossians 1:18).

Notice in these scriptures, the word stars, candlesticks and lampstands all represent a glowing/illuminating light of God’s children (the church) who are called to make a difference in a dark world (Matthew 5:13-16).


When Jesus Christ told John to send these letters to the seven churches, John saw the description of Jesus like this:

In the midst of the seven candlesticks/churches, He was like the Son of man clothed with a garment down to His feet; with a gold sash across His chest – this symbolizes His priestly royalty.


His head and hair were white like wool and white as snow; a blazing glowing light (Daniel 7:9); and His eyes were like a flame of fire, which is symbolic of judgement as He looks at His church/es.


Jesus Christ came in the world and walked the earth as a gentle Lamb (John 1:29, 36), but when He returns, He will be like a roaring Lion coming to judge. There are different judgements; this one is for His church collectively (Revelation, chapters 2-3).


The other is the Judgement Seat of Christ, where each person will give account of their stewardship; what they were given to manage while they were on earth (Romans 14:12, 2 Corinthians 5:10).


Let’s continue: His feet were like fine brass/bronze – shoes are symbolic of one’s walk. Jesus Christ went through the fiery furnace and was refined more and more each time He went through. He endured persecutions, temptations and ultimately to His death on the cross.


Jesus Christ came out victoriously; therefore, He stands with His feet like bronze and with the commanding authority that is like the roar of a Lion. He is the only One who is worthy to stand in this position.


Coming up: The Church at Ephesus Revelation 2:1-7 ~ Commendation and Warning (Part 1)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Seventh Dispensation - Part 2 of the Time Periods

Some have questions about the rapture and whether or not God’s children will go through the seven -year tribulation period.


When God was going to send His wrath upon the earth, Noah, his family and two of every kind of living creature, male and female went in the Ark, so the earth could repopulate after the flood (Genesis 7:1-17). 


Remember this, God never brings wrath upon His children (1 Thessalonians 5:9)

.

Enoch and Elijah represent the rapture, while Noah going into the Ark is symbolic of Salvation; they went into the Ark and God sealed the door (Genesis 7:16). We are sealed by the Spirit of God (Ephesians 4:30).


You will only see the church still being here in Revelation, chapters 2 and 3, then the seven-year tribulation begins (Matthew 24:15-21, Daniel 12:1).


Flipping back: After John finished talking to the churches, he was taken up in the spirit to be shown things thereafter (Revelation 4:1-2).


During the tribulation period, which will last seven years, we will be in heaven standing before the Judgment Seat of Christ (Romans 14:12, 2 Corinthians 5:10). I will write about crowns (type of rewards) later.


After the tribulation, the Kingdom Age, or Millennial (thousand) year reign begins. This is time period or dispensation number seven.


7) The Kingdom Age:

 We will reign with Jesus 1,000 years; Satan will be bound during that time (Revelation 20:1-3) and after the 1,000 years expire, Satan will be loosed for a season (Revelation 20:7-9), and then it will be over for him, his demons and all his followers. They will be cast into the lake of fire, where they will be tormented forever (Revelation 20:10-15).


Everything will be restored to its original state; it started in the Garden of Eden with time period or dispensation one when God made man, and it will be back in the state of perfection as God has intended for it to be from the beginning.


Behold I make all things new (Revelation 21:5); the New Heavens, the New Earth and the New Jerusalem (Revelation, chapters 21-22).


The Church at Ephesus, the First Listed in Revelation 2:1-7

Commendation and Warning Pertaining to Idolatry and False apostles/gods


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Commendation and Warning to Some Churches in the Book of Revelation ​

Before proceeding to the first church, here is something vitally important that every child of God should know about the different time periods, also called dispensations.


Then you will understand where we are in this particular time period and what is to come. Another reason these two messages are given prior to the churches, is to show the children of God what He is pleased with and what He is displeased with when it comes to His Church, the body of Christ. This is to let the children of God know that there are eternal consequences for not doing God’s will.


The first six time periods:

1) Innocence: Man/woman was created innocent in a perfect environment (Genesis 1:28-chapter 2).


2) Consciousness: Adam and Eve became aware of what they did; they now knew both good and evil (Genesis 3:1-7).


3) Human Government: Man was responsible for judging man; this was the beginning of the judicial system - whoever killed another person would be killed (capital punishment was instituted), because man was made in the image of God and his life was sacred (Genesis 9:5-6).


4) Promise: God called out a nation of people through Abraham and made a covenant (agreement/promise), that all nations would be blessed through him (Genesis 12:1).


5) The Law: God gave Moses the law; it continued to the cross and ended so, Grace would come. Each time period had to end for the next time period to begin (Exodus 19:8, Matthew 27:35-53).


6) Grace: Man did not keep the law of Moses; it only made him/her aware of sin. That’s why Grace was necessary, and it came though Jesus Christ (John 1:17).


Five time periods have ended and we are living in the sixth time period or dispensation of Grace, which is also called the church age; it started on the day of Pentecost (Acts, chapter 2) and will not end until Jesus takes us into heaven to be with Him. This is called the rapture, which means to be caught up or snatched away (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, 1 Corinthians 15:51-58).


One Old Testament symbolism of the rapture is Enoch, who walked with God and then he was no longer here (Genesis 5:24); Elijah was taken away into heaven in a whirlwind (2 Kings 2:1-11).


Nobody went to heaven before Jesus died (Matthew 27:51-53, Ephesians 4:8-10).


The Old Testament saints were in Paradise, the lower parts of the earth (Luke 16:19-26). After Jesus rose from the dead, those who were in Paradise (the lower parts of the earth), also called Abraham’s bosom, were raised and they are in Paradise with God (2 Corinthians 5:8).


Paradise was also called Abraham’s bosom, because through his seed all nations would be blessed (Genesis 22:18, Galatians 3:6-9). Abraham was the father of our faith (Romans 4:13-17); Jesus is Author and Finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2). Salvation could only come through Jesus Christ (John 14:6, Acts 4:12, 1 Timothy 2:4-5).


Next: Part 2 of the Time Periods – The Seventh Dispensation


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Worship of gods and goddesses in the New Testament

There is nothing new under the sun (Ecclesiastes 1:9).


The last message was about the worship of gods and goddesses in the Old Testament. Let’s go to the New Testament and the church age to see how the worship of gods and goddesses was and still is as prevalent today as it was from its beginning. In fact, the presence idols and false gods are prevailing more than ever before.


You may wonder where the idea of statutes come and how there are different statutes with different names, depending on the territory or location. Again, just as all gods, the idea of how to create a statute/image comes from demonic influence.


While Paul and Barnabas were in the town of Lystra carrying the Gospel of Jesus Christ, they saw a man who was impotent (crippled) from birth and was unable to walk. When Paul perceived that the man had faith to be healed, he said with a loud voice, stand up on your feet. And he leaped and walked.


And when the people saw what Paul had done, they lifted their voices saying in the language of Lycaonia, the gods have come down to us looking like men. And they called Barnabas Jupiter and Paul Mercurius because he was the chief speaker.


Then the priest of Jupiter …. brought oxen and garlands and would have sacrificed with the people. When the apostles Barnabas and Paul heard this, they tore their clothes and ran in among the people and let them know that they were men just as they were. The people actually thought their gods had power. 


After they had preached the Gospel and taught many, they returned to Lystra ….. (Acts 14:8-21).


The Barbarian people on the island of Melita did not show kindness; they kindled a fire and received Paul and the others because of the rain and cold. After Paul gathered a bundle of sticks and laid them on the fire, a venous snake came out of the fire and bit him; Paul shook the snake off and no harm was done to him.


When the Barbarians saw it, they thought Paul should have swollen or dropped dead suddenly; after they had looked for a while, and saw no harm came to him, they changed their minds and said he was a god. This shows that these barbarians believed in gods, so that was not unusual for these uncivilized people who had no manners (Acts 28:1-11).


The whole city of Ephesus worshipped the great goddess Diana (Acts 19:24-35). We are now dealing with the church in Ephesus that could have been highly influenced by its ungodly surroundings. Therefore, Paul wrote to the church to encourage them in their faith, which would strengthen them in their walk with Christ.


The book of Ephesians covers every aspect of the Christian’s life. Although Paul commends the church for their faith, he also warns them of false apostles who were influencing the church. You will read more about the church of Ephesus when we get to the Book of Revelation.


Paul was pastor of the church in Ephesus for a couple of years and Timothy later became the pastor. Paul was encouraging Timothy to be strong because of the ungodly influence that was trying to enter the church.


Certain false apostles were coming in to deceive the church with erroneous doctrine. For instance, they were forbidding people to marry and putting dietary restrictions on them (1 Timothy 4:1-5).


Next: Commendation and Warning to the Churches in the Book of Revelation


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett


Idol Worship and False gods - Part 2

In the last message (Part 1), I shared about a person/king who was a god, but there were many other gods in Egypt. They made statutes of various gods, and this continued throughout history.


I want to give an example of a situation in the Old Testament of a man of God who was in a contest with the prophets of Baal. Who was Baal? He was the name of a supreme god, meaning lord, that was worshipped in Canaan and Phoenicia. Baal was believed to be a fertility god; by which crops were produced and people were able to produce children.


Jezebel a woman from Phoenicia was king Ahab’s wife; she was wicked and controlling and she worshipped the nature god Baal. After Ahab married Jezebel, he went and served Baal and worshipped him (1 Kings 16:31-33).


Elijah the prophet is sent to King Ahab

The earth had been dry due to three years of drought (scripture that supports/relates – James 5:17-18).

Then the LORD sent Elijah the prophet to King Ahab to announce that rain was coming. Ahab asked Elijah wasn’t he the one who troubled Israel. Elijah responded to Ahab and told him that he and his father’s house had forsaken or moved away from the commandments of the LORD and followed Baalim. 


These scripture about Elijah are taken from 1 Kings, Chapter 18; I encourage you to read the entire chapter.

I am paraphrasing this: Elijah asked King Ahab to get Israel and the prophets of Baal and have them gather at Mt. Carmel; there was going to be a contest. Elijah (one man) came up against 450 prophets of Baal.


The 450 prophets of Baal called on the name of Baal from morning until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us, but there was no voice to answer them. They leaped on the altar that had been made.


Elijah mocked them and said, cry out loud, for he is a god; either he is talking, or he is pursuing, or he is on a journey; maybe he is asleep and need to be awakened.

Then they cried out loud and cut themselves with knives and lancets until blood came from them.

Skipping to verses 36-40


…..let it be known this day, that You are God in Israel and I am Your servant and have done according to Your Word. Hear me O LORD God that You have turned their hearts back again.


Then the fire of the LORD fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, the stones and the dust and licked up the water that was in the trench.

And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces and they said; the LORD He is the God, the LORD He is the God.


And Elijah said, take the prophets of Baal and do not let any of them escape. And they took them and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon and killed them.


There is a saying: “If you play with fire, you’ll get burned”- the prophets of Baal played with fire per se, and they ended up dead. That’s what the devil does. He’ll lure people in and destroy them.


Apparently, their gods were doing something, but it had to be demonic forces that were behind them. This certainly shows the readers how little power demons have compared to our GOD.

God proved that He was the true God (1 Kings 18:16-39). There is nobody greater than our God.


All of the 450 prophets who worshipped Baal were killed (1 Kings 18:40). Remember how Pharaoh and his army drowned (died); how Jim Jones died; how David Koresh died. The principle is, anybody who worships other gods whether they are live or statues, come to no good end.


Next: The Worship of gods and goddesses in the New Testament


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Idol Worship and False gods - Part 1

False gods and idols do not possess power; demons are the evil spirits or the forces of darkness behind all idols and false gods. 


You must remember that demons have power, but the true and living God Almighty is the only One who has all power.

The Egyptians, the Greeks and Romans worshipped many gods, and goddesses. The Romans also accepted the Greek gods.


I am going to use an example of how the Egyptians worshipped gods.

God told Moses and Aaron when Pharaoh speak to them saying, ‘Show a miracle for yourselves’ then you shall say to Aaron, ‘Take your rod and cast it before Pharaoh, and let it become a serpent’. ….. and they did as the LORD commanded.


And Aaron cast down his rod and it became a serpent/snake. But Pharaoh also called the wise men, sorcerers; the magicians of Egypt did the same with their enchantments. For every man threw down his rod and they became serpents. But Aaron’s rod swallowed their rods (Exodus 7:8-13). Our God is greater and more powerful than any or many demons/devils.


After each plague, Pharaoh made promises, but he didn’t stick to his word (Exodus, chapter 8).

When the magicians saw that this was a no-win situation when it came to the plagues, they said to Pharaoh, This is the finger of God and Pharaoh’s heart was hardened and he did not listen to them as the LORD had said (Exodus 8:19).


Although God showed Himself to be more powerful, Pharaoh still resisted, until God hit home with the tenth plague, that every first born of Egypt would die (Exodus 11:1-12:36). Pharaoh’s son also died; this caused Pharaoh to let the Hebrew children go. 


When they were crossing the Red Sea, Pharaoh and his army pursued them, and they drowned (Exodus 14:21-28). He didn’t mean what he said that time either; but it was too late.


Pharaoh was considered a god on earth, the intermediary between the gods and the people. When Pharaoh came to the throne, he was instantly Horus, the god who defeated the forces of chaos and restored order- and when he died, he was associated with Osiris, the god of the dead. This was taken from Pharaoh – Ancient History Encyclopedia


None of the cults have gods that can do anything for them. Demons are the influence behind every cult leader.

I watched two documentaries recently, pertaining to cult leaders – Jim Jones and David Koresh. These men were highly influenced by demonic spirits.


When Jim Jones’ people murdered some of people who were sent to rescue his followers, he knew that was it for him. But Jim Jones was not going to go down by himself, so he poisoned one thousand people.


When some people from the US were sent to rescue people who were controlled by David Koresh, not many of them did not want to leave because they had been brainwashed. Even when Koresh told people he was the sinful messiah, the people still were loyal to him. Koresh also bargained with the officials, but he never stuck to his word, just as the Pharaoh didn’t keep his word.


Satan is deceptive, and he lures people with his lies (John 8:44). He doesn’t present the lie like the Red Devil with the horns and tail on the lye can. Satan presents himself as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14). Similarly, Cult leaders are very charismatic (charming) and convincing.


Idol Worship and False gods - Part 2


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

How Does God Require His Children to Live?

First of all, we are called to be different because we are holy, peculiar (2 Peter 2:9). What does God’s Word mean when it tells us to be holy as He is holy (1 Peter 1:15-17)?


It means to practice or move forward in our daily walk. This is called practical holiness. We became positionally holy (righteous - right standing with Christ) the moment we were born-again (2 Corinthians 5:21).


Holy people are peculiar, which means to be different from those in the world (2 Corinthians 6:17). Our lights will not shine if we are doing the same things worldly people are doing (Matthew 5:13-16).


We are also required to say things that edify or encourage one another. To use slang words or words to substitute what the world’s words are, we still are acting no different.


Example: He gets on my freaking nerves. Do you know what that word really means? It means arrogance, contempt or anger. In other words, it is a substitute for you know what, which is a curse word, that ends up being coarse jesting (obscenity or foolish talking (Ephesians 5:4).


I encourage you to look in the Urban dictionary for the meaning of this words that do not edify.

There was a bracelet being worn by many believers in the 1990’s with the initials WWJD. This meant “What Would Jesus Do”. The phrase was a reminder for them to attempt to act in a way that personifies Jesus’ teachings from the Gospels.

Jesus spoke gracious words out His mouth (Luke 4:22).


 Since we are the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13), our words should be full of grace and seasoned with salt….. (Colossians 4:6).


This is an example of how a word can be used in the proper context: Fool in its proper context is not negative. David said, the fool said in his heart, there is no God (Psalm 14:1).


Paul said the Galatians were foolish; they reverted back to the law when they were under grace (Galatians 3:1-13). When Jesus called the Pharisees fools, it was because they were glorifying themselves instead of God (Matthew 23:13-17).


Even though we are living in different times, the Word of God has not changed; Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8).


Challenge: If Jesus was physically in your presence, what would you do or say? He is present, because the Spirit of Christ lives in us (Romans 8:9-10).


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

“The Difference in Cults, False Religions and True Christianity” – Part 2

As I continue with part two of the message, there is much more to these false beliefs. However, I am sharing enough in a simple way for the readers to have an awareness that there is no need to carry on long conversations when sharing the Gospel of Jesus 

Christ; just enough to show others how Jesus is God and He is the only way anyone can receive eternal life (John 14:6).


Jesus said, “I Am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father who is the Godhead, except by the Son of the Godhead, through the power of the Holy Spirit of the Godhead”.


As I stated in a previous message, it is impossible to think one can inherit eternal life any other way. Jesus said: Unless you believe that I Am He, you are still in your sins (John 8:24).


Jesus said this about the Pharisees: You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions (Mark 7:9). 


This is the similar to the Roman Catholics, and these are some examples of their rules: They call the Pope Father; Jesus said the children of God are to call no man father…. (Matthew 23:9); that does not mean our earthly fathers; it means putting them equal with God.


 What did God say about having other gods before Him? (Exodus 20:3; 34:14).  Mary is also worshipped by the Roman Catholics; they believe that Mary is without sin because she gave birth to Jesus.


What does the Word of God say about sin? Everybody was born in sin because of our fore-father Adam; when he disobeyed God, everybody was a sinner; including Mary (Romans 5:12). The Holy Spirit was involved in the birth of Jesus birth for Him to be born sinless (Luke 1:35).


The Roman Catholics believe that their Pope has the same authority as Jesus. They pray to saints and confess their sins to priests; Only God/Jesus can forgive sins; of course, Jesus is also God who forgives sins (Mark 2:5-9).


These cults or false religions are deceived by the devil. The god of this world has blinded their minds…. (2 Corinthians 4:3-4).

Additionally; no person who started any of these movements ever died and rose from the dead; it took Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection……. brought salvation to many (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).


Example: The United House of Prayer’s leader never rose from the dead, yet he is called their savior. They even sing a song called: “Oh how we love sweet daddy”; we sing “Oh How I Love Jesus”. 


How do I know this? I was sent there to learn some truths for myself. I also observed them reaching out over others to give their bishop/god money, as he made his grand entrance, protected by his bodyguards. The ushers were in the pulpit waiting with large fans to make sure he was kept cool.


Next: Idol Worship and False gods


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

“The Difference in Cults, False Religions and True Christianity” – Part 1

The reason so many cults and false religions are on the rise, is because many people seek after their own understanding rather than trusting the true and living Almighty God.


There is no private interpretation when it comes to the Word of God: Knowing first of all, that no prophecy of scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For the prophecy was not produced by the will of man, but by holy men of God who spoke as they were inspired by the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:20-21).


These are some of the biggest main-stream cults:


Muslims do not believe there is a Spirit of God, and they believe that Jesus was a prophet like Moses and Mohammad. Jesus was greater than Moses (Hebrews 3:1-6). In fact, Jesus was greater than all prophets. After all, the One who created has to be greater than the created one (Colossians 1:16-17).


Some of them say that their god (Allah) is the same God we born-again believers belong to; not true. It impossible to serve or belong to a God who is not Jesus Christ, or the Holy Spirit (1 John 5:4-8).


You cannot have one without the other. It takes the entire Godhead to make Salvation possible. It took the Father sending the Son who carried out His will, and the Holy Spirit baptized believers into the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:13).


Mormons/church of the Latter-Day Saints/LDS - one of their beliefs is that Jesus and Satan were brothers, that they share God the Father as their spiritual parent. It has already been written how absurd that is. How can Jesus the Creator be brother to the one He created? (Colossians 1:16-17). 


And they believe that the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit are three distinct beings; not One God in three Persons.


This cult and all other cults have a leader who started these movements; there are thousands of them. All cults believe that one has to work his or her way to receive eternal life. 


The Word of God explicitly says that no one can receive Salvation by works; it is by the grace of God and the person’s faith that brings eternal life (Ephesians 2:8-9).


God proved that one’s works was not sufficient when Adam and Eve, clothed themselves with fig leaves (Genesis 3:7). God also proved that Salvation could come through Him/Jesus Christ alone (Genesis 3:15, Acts 4:12, 1 Timothy 2:5). 


It was the shed blood of Jesus Christ who sacrificed Himself for the sins of the world; without the shedding of His blood, there is no forgiveness of sins (Hebrews 9:22).


Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Jesus was/is a god; the Word of God says: In the beginning was the Word, the Word was with God and the Word was God (John 1:1). 


They believe the Holy Spirit is a force that God uses. In other Words, they don’t believe He is the third person of the Godhead, which is the Trinity. They also believe their works will give them eternal life.


Next: “The Difference in Cults, False Religions and True Christianity” – Part 2


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

God the Father Called Jesus the Son, God​


This is the final message of the series about the “Infallible Proof that Jesus Christ is God”.


The reason this was saved for the last message is because this is the grand finale of all the messages.

Many born-again believers do not know that God called Jesus, His Son God. 


I’m going to use scriptures today that puts a seal on Jesus Christ being God. I have stated many times in previous messages that there should be scriptures that support, connect and relate to the scripture that is being used.


Every message pertaining to Jesus Christ being God has been confirmed, and these are scriptures that confirm all the others.


Many of the Psalms are prophetic and this particular psalm is revealing that Jesus Christ is God. How is that so? Let’s go back to: In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth (Genesis 1:1). Well, doesn’t the Word of God say that all things in heaven and earth were created by Christ (Colossians 1:16-17)? The Word of God is not contradictory.


Let’s go to what the psalmist who was inspired by the Holy Spirit wrote: Of old You laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. …. They (people) will change, but You are the same. And Your years will have no end (Psalm 102:25-27). 


These verses are also solid proof that Jesus Christ and God are the same: I and My Father are one (John 10:30), and the Holy Spirit bears witness of the Triune God in three Persons (1 John 5:6-8).


Now, the concentration will be on what God called His Son (Hebrews, chapter 1; Psalm 45:6-7)

But to the Son He says: Your Throne O God is forever and ever; a scepter (a ruler’s staff) of righteousness is the scepter of Your Kingdom - Who will rule as King? Jesus Christ, of course!


Why is God calling Jesus Christ God? Because the two are one and the same. God the Father (Initiator) prepared a body who was Jesus Christ, second Person of the Godhead, who carried out the Father’s will, and the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Trinity, is the power behind everything. Example: The Holy Spirit (power of the Most-High) overshadowed Mary and Jesus was conceived (Luke 1:35).


These are just some additional scriptures to prove that Jesus Christ is God. Christ is over all, God blessed forever (Romans 9:5); For in Him dwells the fulness of the Godhead bodily (Colossians 2:9); Jesus Christ, the Son is the true God and eternal life (1 John 5:20b).


In Deuteronomy 6:4, when God spoke to Israel, saying He was One God, the Jews looked to Him as the (shema) one singular; the Hebrew word for one (echad) means one or unity, not singularity.


Throughout the Old Testament, God was at work revealing who Jesus was through types, figures and shadows of things to come. Examples: Passover Lamb; they still celebrate Passover; Jesus became the Passover Lamb that was sacrificed for sins (1 Corinthians 5:7b). The Holy Spirit was fire by night, pillar of cloud by day-this symbolized the Holy Spirit leading them.


So, what hindered the Jews from accepting Jesus as their Messiah? They were expecting Jesus to establish His kingdom on earth in their time period, to free them from Roman oppression.


Jesus said this to the Pharisees who were one sect of the Jewish leaders: “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; if you do not believe that I Am He, you will die in your sins” (John 8:24). Jesus said you will die in your sins two times in the same sentence; He really put emphasis on the statement. Religious people don’t seek after God, they make their own rules.


Although the Pharisees said they followed the law of Moses, they added thousands of laws for their own benefit.


Next: “The Difference in Cults, False Religions and True Christianity”.


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett






Jesus Christ is God Who is to Be Worshipped - Part 4


As I come to the final message of the four-part series, there is more you need to know about Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Look at the word Lord, which means ownership. Example: If you were renting from a landlord, who actually owns the property? The landlord is the owner.


I am giving you a historical account of this awesome King, Jesus Christ. What does it mean to be a king? He has a domain that he rules over. When God created Adam, he was given ruler-ship over the earth; in other words, Adam was given domain, for he was king (Genesis 1:26-30).


Because Adam disobeyed God, he lost his position of king, and he handed his ruler-ship over to Satan, who became the god or ruler of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4). I said, Satan is the god of this world, not the owner; God owns everything (Psalm 24:1; 50:10-11).


God came down in the form of man and is called Jesus the Son of man because He was born of a virgin woman (Matthew 1:18-25), to identify with the human race. How did God come down? The Word says: You have prepared a body for Me…. I came down to do Your will, O God (Hebrews 10:4-7).


 God loved us so that He sent His Son to die for our sins that (John 3:16) we inherited from Adam (Romans 5:12).

We needed a Savior (Ephesians 2:12-22), who is also King of glory (Psalm 24:7-10), or the Lord of glory (1 Corinthians 2:8; James 2:1).


Let’s talk more about this King – Jesus, the Son of God was born King and He was worshipped in Hid infancy as King (Matthew 2:1-2).


All men should honor the Son, just as they honor the Father (John 5:23). To fail to give honor to the Son is to fail to give honor to the God the Father. Honor is to think highly (reverence) or recognize the importance of spiritual value, while worship is to express honor through extravagant respect, and devotion. We honor King Jesus who is worthy of our worship. We worship the King who is worthy of all honor, glory and praises.


The disciples were confirmed of Jesus Christ’s deity and divine Son-ship when He ascended into heaven. They worshipped Him as their God (Luke 24:52). 


These are more scriptures showing Jesus Christ being worshipped. Wise men worshipped Jesus Christ after His birth (Matthew 2:1,10-12); A leper worshipped Jesus Christ (Matthew 8:2);

When Jesus rescued Peter from sinking, and they came into the ship, those in the ship worshipped Jesus Christ…. (Matthew 14:24-33); The disciples worshipped Jesus Christ after He resurrected from the dead (Matthew 28:8-10); The angels worship Jesus Christ (Hebrews 1:6);


Angels, beasts and elders worshipped Him….and every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth and under the earth and those in the sea … saying blessings, glory and honor be to Him that sits on the throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever … and the twenty four elders fell down and worshipped Him that lives forever (Revelation 5:8-14). 


Glory, honor and praises to Jesus Christ, our King, who is worthy of our worship.


Jesus humbled Himself, even though He did not think it robbery to think of Himself as God; Jesus Christ has always been God, He took on the form of man to identify with mankind, and was obedient to the point of death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name: the name is Lord (Philippians 2:6-11).


Next: God the Father Called Jesus the Son, God


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Jesus Christ is God Who is to Be Worshipped; The Angels Worshipped Jesus Christ - Part 3

If the angels worshipped Jesus Christ who is God, then how could Jesus and Satan be brothers?


There is a group who believes God is the Father of all and that He is separate from the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ. It was already written that God the Father, God the Son and God the Spirit are one and the same (1 John 4:4-8). The Triune God is one indeed and can never be separated; just function in different capacities.


Example: There are three sets of gifts given by each person of the Godhead. There are different gifts but by the same Spirit (The Holy Spirit or Spirit of God -1 Corinthians 12:4, 7-11).


There are different administrations (or ministries), which is also called the office gifts (five-fold ministry) given by the same Lord (1 Corinthians 12:5, Ephesians 4:11).


There are diversities of operations, but it is the same God who works all in all; these are called motivational gifts given by God the Father (1 Corinthians 12:6, Romans 12:6-8).


The word same came up with each person of the Godhead, and in the Greek language, it means to be equal. Remember how Jesus did not think it was robbery to be equal with God?


Let’s continue on with this awesome Jesus who was worshipped by wise men that saw the star in the east and came to worship the baby King; angels also worshipped Him as King of the Jews; they worshipped the baby Jesus as King, who was God in the flesh. Gifts that the wise men brought to Him were fitting for a King. (Matthew 2:2, 11).


How did these men know about Jesus and when He was going to be born King of the Jews? It is recorded that there is a ruler (King) who will come forth out of Judah; that is to be ruler of Israel whose goings forth have been from old, from everlasting (Micah 5:2). Jesus came out of the ancestry of Judah (Matthew 1:3). Jesus Christ is referred to as the Lion out of the tribe Judah (Revelation 5:5).


I am going to share briefly that the angels worshipped Jesus the Messiah/King (Hebrews 1:6), and they still worship Him. But first I am going to share how a fallen angel wanted Jesus Christ his Creator to worship him.


This is the most absurd thing you will probably hear. Here’s a little history. Now we know that God created Lucifer, who later became Satan (Isaiah 14:12-15), the adversary (enemy- 1 Peter 5:8). How in the world could and can a created being want the Lord God Almighty who is Creator of everything to bow down and worship him (Matthew 4:4-8-10, Luke 4:5-8). I told you this was going to be absurd.


Angels worshipped Him, they do worship and they will worship Jesus Christ, who is God (Hebrews 1:4-6, Revelation 7:9-12).


You may ask. Doesn’t the Bible say Jesus was a little lower than the angels? Psalm 8:5 is a messianic prophecy that is confirmed in Hebrews 2:9. This is why you need understanding of what the scripture is saying. Jesus was only a little lower than the angels when He was on earth as a human, plus the scripture said it was for a little while; now He is crowned with glory and honor (Hebrews 2:9). 


We are also lower than the angels; they have been given charge over they protect and war on our behalf (Psalm 91:11), and they were there ministering (protecting) on our behalf before we were born-again (Hebrews 1:14).


Yet the Word of God says we will judge (to rule or govern) the angels (1 Corinthians 6:3). When will that take place? In the eternal realm when we reign with Jesus who is God our King; He is to be worshipped.


Next: Jesus Christ is God Who is to Be Worshipped - Part 4


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Jesus Christ is God Who is to Be Worshipped - Part 2

I am going to share some of the numerous scriptures revealing how Jesus Christ was worshipped and will be worshipped.


Before getting to the message, I will encourage you to search the scriptures for yourselves and see how the Word of God confirms who Jesus Christ is. 


There was a group of people who were being taught by scholars, yet they searched the scripture for themselves to see if what the scholars taught was truth. 


They were called noble or excellent, because it did not matter how learned these scholars were, the one who were being taught searched the scriptures for themselves. Therefore, many of them believed, including women (Acts 17:11-12).


In one of the messages “Jesus Christ, the Eternal, Everlasting God”, I was challenged. I did not respond to the person because he challenges many Christian articles. As a matter of fact, I told one writer that we should pray for the man because he couldn’t be born-again saying negative things about what people are writing pertaining to the Word of God. The Word says that the natural or unsaved person cannot understand the things the Spirit of God…. (1 Corinthians 2:14-16).


Let’s get to the matter at hand; how Jesus Christ is God Who is to be Worshipped.


God forbids worship to anyone or anything but Himself, but it is given to Jesus Christ. This would be blasphemy if Jesus Christ was not God. Remember how the Jewish leaders said Jesus was blaspheming when He said to a sick person, “your sins are forgiven”. The scribes and the Pharisees began to reason saying: “Who is this that speak blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God only?” (Luke 5:18-23).


Doesn’t the scripture say that God will share His glory with no one (Isaiah 42:8, 48:11)? Isaiah called Jesus Christ Immanuel; meaning, God with us (Isaiah 7:14, Matthew 1:23).


The vision of the throne: The beasts… Saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty which was and is, and is to come; they give honor and thanks for Him who sat on the throne and lives forever. The twenty-four elders fall down before Him who lives forever and ever, cast their crowns before the throne, saying, You are worthy, O Lord to receive glory and honor and power: for You have created all things, and for Your pleasure they were and are created (Revelation 4:9-11).


Who created all things? Jesus Christ did (Colossians 1:16-17). This scripture has been used numerous times, saying who Jesus Christ is; He is God.


John heard the voice of many angels, beasts and elders around the throne, saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power…. I heard them saying blessing and honor…. To Him who sits on the throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever. And the beasts said Amen. And the twenty-four elders fell down and worshipped Him who lives forever and ever (Revelation 5:11-14).


Who is the Lamb that was slain from the foundation of the world? It is Christ, of course! Even the unsaved shall worship Him (Revelation 13:8).


Jesus humbled Himself, even though He did not think it robbery to think of Himself as God; Jesus Christ has always been God, He took on the form of man to identify with mankind, and was obedient to the point of death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name: the name is Lord (Philippians 2:6-11).


Although Jesus Christ limited Himself as being 100%, at times He used His supernatural power. This revealed that He was also 100% God.


Next: Jesus Christ is God Who is to Be Worshipped -Part 3


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Jesus is God Who is to be Worshipped - Part 1

As I pen this message today, the question is: How much do you really know who Jesus Christ is, the One you profess to be you Lord and Savior?


Jehovah’s witnesses call Jesus Christ a god: In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was a god (John 1:1). This is from their bible; the New World’s Translation. If Jesus Christ was a god, then the god that they worship is an idol, according to their doctrine.


The God of the Bible is defined as one God in three persons which is the Godhead - the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. So, who do they worship? The answer has just been written. Additionally, the same is for any group of people who do not believe that to become born-again, one must believe that Jesus is God: Unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins (John 8:24b).


God told His people in the Old Testament that they should have no other gods before them; God went on to say He was a jealous God (Exodus 20:3, 23:24, 34:14; Deuteronomy 5:7, 6:14, 8:19,12:30, 28:14; Joshua 23:7; Psalm 81:9)

This is solid proof that Jesus Christ and God the Father are the same.


While Paul and Barnabas were in Lystra preaching the Gospel, they saw a man who was impotent in feet and crippled from birth and had never walked. Paul looked at him and perceived he had faith to be healed; Paul said with a loud voice, stand up and walk. And he leaped and walked.


 When the people saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices in the language of Lycaonia, the gods have come down to us in the likeness of men (Acts 14:12-16). They called Paul Mercurius and Barnabas Jupiter. The people were worshipping gods in that city; Paul told they were mere men just as they were.


Paul tells the church at Galatia that before they became born-again, they were slaves to sin, but now you turn again to the weak and beggarly elements, where you desire to be slaves again (Galatians 4:7-9). They had worshipped Greco-Roman pantheon of non-existent deities. In other words, they worshipped idol gods that could not do anything for them.


This particular group of people knew that God existed through His creation; there was evidence of God everywhere. However, they chose to worship the creature more than the Creator (Jesus). The Word of God says they worshipped the creature more than the Creator Jesus Christ (Colossians 1:16-19).


The scriptures go on to say: They exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. They changed the truth of God to a lie. For this reason, God gave them up to dishonorable passions. Men wanted men and women desired women which was/is against the nature of God (Romans 1:20-26).

Who is to be worshipped? Jesus Christ, of course!


Jesus humbled Himself, even though He did not think it robbery to think of Himself as God; Jesus Christ has always been God, He took on the form of man to identify with mankind, and was obedient to the point of death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name: the name is Lord (Philippians 2:6-11).


Although Jesus Christ limited Himself as being 100%, at times He used His supernatural power. This revealed that He was also 100% God.


Next: Jesus Christ is God Who is to Be Worshipped - Part 2


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett


Jesus Christ, the Eternal, Everlasting God - Part 2

As I continue with Part 2, you will see that there are many scriptures supporting, relating to, and confirming who Jesus Christ really is. A few months ago, I started a series about “Seeing Jesus Throughout the Bible”. Although there were quite a few replies, the Spirit revealed to me that many did not understand, or they were not interested in knowing the truth.


Why is that so? The more one knows, the more accountable one is. But, on the other hand, what one doesn’t know causes him or her to suffer loss (Hosea 4:6). Every child of God is responsible for their spiritual growth. There is accountability for one knows and what does not know (2 Corinthians 5:10).


After this series and Eternal Security, as the Holy Spirit leads, I will go back to the series pertaining to “Seeing Jesus Christ Throughout the Bible”. By that time the readers will have a better understanding from learning how Jesus is the Word and the Word is God. In other words, you will see the connection and be able to understand who Jesus Christ/God is from the beginning of the Bible, throughout its entirety.

Part 2

Jesus Christ is King Eternal – Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen (1 Timothy 1:17). How can we say Jesus Christ is invisible? We cannot see Him, just as we cannot see God the Father or God the Spirit.


God revealed Himself through Jesus physically when Jesus was on the earth. We will see Jesus in the eternal realm. Proof: Zechariah 13:6- Jesus was asked what the wounds in His hands were; He said: I was wounded in the house of my friends (the Jews). Beloved, now we are the sons of God, and it does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know when He appears, we will be like Him, for we will see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him, purifies himself, even as He is pure (1 John 3:2-3).


How is He immortal? Jesus was mortal (flesh and blood) when He was on the earth; now He is immortal, He will never have a body that will decay again; neither will we.


But the Lord is the true God, He is the living God and everlasting King (Jeremiah 10:10). The word King is referring to Jesus Christ who is King of kings and Lord of lords (Revelation 19:16). This is really awesome how Paul shows who Christ is; the blessed and only Potentate (of great authority), the King of kings and Lord of lords (1 Timothy 6:14-16). I could barely contain myself when I read these verses.


Remember at the beginning of the message, any time you see God as King, the Word is talking about Jesus Christ, the King of kings who we will reign with (Revelation 20:4-6).


Jesus Christ humbled Himself in His humanity and was given a name above all names - Lord (Philippians 2:6-9).

Next: Jesus Christ is God Who is to Be Worshipped


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Jesus Christ, the Eternal, Everlasting God -Part 1 

The Word of God is always true regardless of what anyone thinks or believes. Any time the word King is mentioned in the Bible; and it says God, it is talking about Jesus Christ who is also God, the second person of the Godhead. The Godhead consists of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (1 John 5:4-8).


I am mentioning this so you will have a better understanding and you can also explain it to others. Jesus taught the disciples and as they learned, they carried their information to others. We are also disciples (meaning to be taught, learners), who are commissioned to carry the Word of God wherever our part of the world is. Notice in Matthew 28:20, that we are told to teach others what we have learned.


On that note, I am grateful to all of you who want to learn more about the Word of God. Every child of God is commanded to study (2 Timothy 2:15) and be taught, so they will not be tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine (Ephesians 4:11-16). That is the only way to grow (2 Peter 3:18).


It is so sad that many of those who profess to be children of God are not learned; because they reject knowledge (Hosea 4:6).There is going to come a time when all the children of God will stand before Christ to give account of their deeds/works/stewardship (Matthew 25:14-30, 1 Corinthians 3:11-15, 2 Corinthians 5:10).


Let’s go to Jesus the eternal, everlasting God our King:

Jesus Christ is the eternal God: all things were created by Him and for Him… by Him all things consist (Colossians 1:16-17).


Jesus Christ is the everlasting Father of eternity - He brought Salvation to us, and we will be with Him throughout eternity (Isaiah 9:6).


Jesus Christ is the first and the last; He is the King of Israel and beside Him there is no God (Isaiah 44:6). Jesus Christ is God and He is King.


Jesus Christ is Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last (Revelation 1:8, 17-18; 21:6; 22:13).


Jesus is the everlasting God - Have you not known, have you not heard that the everlasting Lord God, the Creator of the ends of the earth faints not neither is weary? (Isaiah 40:28). Did you notice the Word, Creator? Let’s go back to Colossians 1:16-17; all things were created by Him and for Him.


Jesus Christ’s Kingdom is an everlasting kingdom and it endures throughout all generations (Psalm 145:13). In other words, His Kingdom will never end (Isaiah 9:7, Luke 1:33).


Remember at the beginning of the message I said, any time you see God as King, The Word is talking about Jesus Christ, the King of kings whom we will reign with (Revelation 20:4-6).


Jesus Christ humbled Himself in His humanity and was given a name above all names - Lord (Philippians 2:6-7).


Next: Jesus Christ, the Eternal, Everlasting God -Part 2


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Jesus Christ, The Only Wise God our Savior

To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen (Jude, verse 25).


You will find the words, God our Savior in 1 Timothy 2:3, Titus 1:3; 2:10-13; 3:4 and 2 Peter 1:1.

God always confirms His Word; as you see, there are several scriptures relating, supporting and connecting to the topic. 


Let’s see what these verses are saying and get the true meaning of them.


God our Savior - Doesn’t the Word of God say that Jesus Christ is our Savior?

If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved (Romans 10:9). 


Who said, destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up (John 2:19)? Jesus did, of course! Therefore, Jesus Christ who is God raised the temple (His body) in three days.


He, His temple (body) was crucified, by the worse kind of death. This kind of punishment was for slaves and malefactors (criminals). This shows how much the Jews hated Jesus and had Him taken to the Roman court, and it was even thought that once Jesus was crucified, it would be the end of Him; but none of the princes (rulers) of this world knew, for had they known it, they would not have crucified our glorious Lord (1 Corinthians 2:8).


Who crucified the Lord of glory? The Roman governor washed his hands before a multitude of people saying, I am innocent of this man’s blood. The responsibility is yours (Matthew 27:24), but the Jews wanted to kill Jesus throughout His ministry and they were continuously trying to find ways to kill Him (John 5:16-17; 7:1; 8:37).

In actuality, everybody was guilty of His death; that’s the reason Jesus bore the sins for everybody (John 3:16, Romans 3:9-12).


Yet, He willingly gave up His life; Jesus said: No one can take My life from Me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority (power) to lay it down and pick it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded (John 10:18). This also reveals that Jesus and God are the same all-powerful one God in three persons, including the Holy Spirit (1 John 5:5-8).


Jesus said this to Philip: Have I not been with you all this time Philip and you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father (John 14:9).


So, how can God the Father and God the Son be separated? They are one in the same; the Triune God just took on different roles. This validates that Jesus Christ is God. Jesus said that He and the Father are one (John 10:30).


Jesus humbled Himself, even though He did not think it robbery to think of Himself as God; Jesus Christ has always been God, He took on the form of man to identify with mankind, and was obedient to the point of death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name: the name is Lord (Philippians 2:6-11)

.

Although Jesus Christ limited Himself as being 100%, at times He used His supernatural power. This revealed that He was also 100% God.


Next: Jesus is the Eternal, Everlasting God


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Jesus is the Lord God our Healer

Jesus is the Lord God our Healer

Jehovah-Rapha


God said if the Israelites would obey Him, He would not put any of the diseases on them (Exodus 15:26). The principle in the same today, healing is conditional; there are certain choices we make that cause our bodies to be unhealthy. For instance, un-forgiveness can stop healing: If I regard (hold, harbor) iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me (Psalm 66:18). God hears everything, but He turns His ear away from those who hold unforgiveness in their hearts.


However, God is Sovereign (whatever He does is always right), and He does what He chooses, even though we may not understand why some people are rich and don’t honor God, or they may be unsaved, and they are healthy. Even still, there are some people who are just downright wicked, and it seems as though they are living a real good life. The Word of God tells us that He sends His sun and rain on the just and the unjust (evil-Matthew 5:45).


He sent His Word and healed them and delivered them from their destruction (Psalm 107:19-20). The Word is Jesus (John 1:1)Jesus healed many who were possessed by with devils and He cast spirits out with His word and healed all that were sick. Then He quoted what Isaiah prophesied: That this might be fulfilled what Isaiah, the prophet saying: Himself took our infirmities and bare our sicknesses (Matthew 8:16-17, Isaiah 53:5).


Isaiah prophesied about future healing (Isaiah 53:5); When Jesus started His public ministry, He fulfilled what Isaiah prophesied (Matthew 8:17). The Word of God lets us know when Jesus went to the cross and died for our sins, He also bore the stripes on His body for us to healed (1 Peter 2:24).


Jesus came to heal the broken hearted; so, it is not just physical healing. He is concerned about the whole person; physical, emotional and spiritual – He came to set the captives free (Isaiah 61:1, Luke 4:18). Jesus was anointed by God to heal all who were afflicted by the devil (Acts 10:38). Jesus said this to some of the people He ministered to: Your faith has made you whole (Mark 5:34, Luke 17:19, John 5:6-8).


Many people who profess to be born-again, do not believe or understand that God/Jesus took care of the whole person. When the children of God don’t activate their faith, God is displeased. Without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6). Most of the Israelites did not enter into the promised land because of lack of faith, or unbelief (Numbers, chapter 14).


The children of Israel had seen God perform the miraculous on their behalf, yet they still did not believe. In third world countries where doctors and medicine are not accessible, it is much easier for people to rely on God to move supernaturally in their bodies.


Even though there is unbelief, the Lord forgives our sins and heals us (Psalm 103:2-3). Who is the Lord? Thomas called Jesus, My Lord and my God (John 20:28). Jesus is called Lord: That at the name of Jesus, every knee should bow, of things in heaven, of things on earth, and things under the earth. And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:10-11).


Jesus humbled Himself, even though He did not think it robbery to think of Himself as God; Jesus Christ has always been God, He took on the form of man to identify with mankind, and was obedient to the point of death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name: the name is Lord (Philippians 2:6-11).


Although Jesus Christ limited Himself as being 100%, at times He used His supernatural power. This revealed that He was also 100% God.


Jesus Christ is the Only Wise God Our Savior


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett


Jesus Christ is God Who Forgives Sins

This may be like a pill that is difficult to swallow, or food that is hard to digest, but God wants His children to know the Truth, regardless of what you learned in the past. I have heard many people saying: “I’ve been told this way; no sense in changing now” or “I’m too old to change” or “I just want to make it in”.


I too felt the same way about being taught one kind of doctrinal belief and thought that it was valid proof, because of the person whom I learned from. This is a caution for the readers, many leaders have left the faith and started believing in a false doctrine, so be careful who you listen to and receive from.


I finally resigned myself to the fact, that I wanted to know the Truth; it wasn’t about what I had learned or who told me. If we have an intimate walk with God, we will be able to minister and witness more effectively. Therefore, it is absolutely necessary to know and walk in Truth.


You may ask this: “What about my family or friends”? What will they think of me? I can tell you as one who has been ostracized, criticized, called “Ms. Holy-Roly”, “Holier than Thou” and so on. That comes with the walk, if you choose to be intimate with God our Father. It did bother me in the past, but I know now that it is not people that I must give account to. The bottom- line is, I must give account for myself (Romans 14:12, 2 Corinthians 5:10).


Now to Jesus Christ is God who Forgives Sins:

Jesus got into a boat and came to His own city. Some people brought Him a man on a stretcher who was sick with palsy lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the man, Son be of good cheer, your sins are forgiven.

Then some of the religious leaders (experts) of Moses’ law thought: He’s dishonoring God (blasphemy). Jesus knew what they were thinking, He asked them, why are you thinking these evil things? Is it easier to say, ‘your sins are forgiven or to get up and walk?’ I want you to know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins. 


These leaders did not recognize Jesus as being divine. For your information, nobody except Jesus Christ, who is God, can forgive sins; not even the Roman Catholic priests.


Then He said to the man, “Get up and pick up your bed and go home. The man got up, immediately picked up his bed and walked away (Matthew 9:1-8, Mark 2:2-12). Can Jesus forgive sins? Of course, He can, and He does. Since that is so, surely, He has to be God, because it is God alone who forgives sins.

 The Lord forgives our sins and heals us (Psalm 103:2-3)


Jesus told a woman her sins were forgiven and that her faith had mad her whole (Luke 7:47-50).


In the Old Testament, of which the four Gospels are also in, Jesus told the man that was healed to show himself to the priest to validate the healing/cleansing of the leper (Luke 5:12-15). This was so, because Jesus was abiding by the Old Covenant; once He died and rose, Jesus Christ was/is the High Priest interceding on behalf of us (Hebrews 7:21-25).


After Jesus came out of the water (Matthew 3:16-17), He was led into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil (Matthew 4:4-11). Jesus began His public ministry (Matthew 4:13-19), which included, healing, miracles, casting out demons or whatever people were afflicted with (Acts 10:38).


Jesus humbled Himself, even though He did not think it robbery to think of Himself as God; Jesus Christ has always been God, He took on the form of man to identify with mankind, and was obedient to the point of death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name (Philippians 2:6-11).


Although Jesus Christ limited Himself as being 100%, at times He used His supernatural power. This revealed that He was also 100% God.


Next: Jesus is The Lord God Our Healer


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Jesus Christ is the Great and Mighty God

As we continue with this series, it is absolutely amazing to search the scriptures and see the total connection with the Triune God. There are many gods, but there is only one God in three persons, who was working in together in creation. God said let Us (Genesis 1:26). The Spirit was moving upon the face of the waters (Genesis 1:2). Christ was the Creator; in Him and by Him all things exist (Colossians 1:16-17).


Isaiah the prophet speaks of Jesus Christ as the Mighty God (Isaiah 9:6); there is a scripture in the New Testament that relates and support what Isaiah prophesied. For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all people. Teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope and glorious appearing of the Great God and our Savior Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13).


The Father is Seen in Jesus Christ - I and My Father are One

Thomas, one of the disciples who was not with the other disciples when Jesus came. The other disciples said to him, we have seen the Lord. But he said to them, except I see His hands and the print of His nails and put my finger into the print of His nails and thrust my hand in His side, I will not believe.


And after eight days, while the disciples and Thomas were together, Jesus came through the closed doors, stood in the midst of them and said, Peace be unto you. Then He said to Thomas, put your finger here, and see My hands; and put your hand and place it in My side. Be not faithless but believe. And Thomas said: my Lord and my God. Jesus told Thomas (called doubting Thomas), because he had seen Him and believed, blessed are they who have not seen and believe (John 20:24-29).


This definitely means that the Father and Jesus Christ are One and the same. In other words, there can never be another disconnect which happened once and for all, just moments prior to His death on the cross (Matthew 27:46), because He took on the sins of the world and became sin for us (2 Corinthians 5:21).


Jesus humbled Himself, even though He did not think it robbery to think of Himself as God; Jesus Christ has always been God. He took on the form of man to identify with mankind, and was obedient to the point of death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name (Philippians 2:6-11).


Although Jesus Christ limited Himself as being 100% human, He was also 100% God.


Next: Jesus Christ is God Who Forgives Sins


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Jesus Christ - I AM

As I continue, there is more proof that God and Jesus Christ are the same; but have different roles. There are many scriptures that relate, connect and confirm who this Awesome God in three persons is: For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word (Jesus Christ is the Word-John 1:1), and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one (1 John 5:7). The Word (Jesus Christ) is used again in Revelation 19:13.


God the I AM

God called Moses to deliver the children of Israel from Egypt where they had been in bondage for 400 years (Genesis 15:13, Acts 7:6), but they sojourned (lived, resided) in Egypt 430 years (Exodus 12:40). God told Moses He would send him to Pharaoh, the king of Egypt and that He would bring His people out of Egypt (Exodus 3:10).

Moses asked God what was he going to tell the children of Israel His name was and what was he going to say to them? And God said to Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and He said you shall say to the children of Israel, I AM has sent me to you (Exodus 3:14).


Jesus Christ is God the “I AM”

The Jews were engaged in a conversation with Jesus and they said He had a devil… they went on to say: “Are you greater than our father Abraham who is dead; who do you make yourself”? Jesus said if I honor Myself I am nothing, it is My Father who honors Me…..Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad. Then the Jews said to Him, you are not fifty years old, and you say you have seen Abraham? (they had no concept of His divinity).


Jesus said, truly, truly I say to you, before Abraham was, I am. Then they took up stones to cast Him out… (John 8:52-59). Foot note: Abraham saw through the eyes of faith, believing what God had told him that through him all nations would be blessed, and it would happen through his heirs, including Jesus Christ who caused us to be heirs of salvation (Galatians 3:29).


Abraham was looking for a city that has foundations, whose builder and maker is God (Hebrews 11:8-10). He was actually looking toward Jesus Christ who is the author and finisher of faith (Hebrews 12:2).


Jesus humbled Himself, even though He did not think it robbery to think of Himself as God, because Jesus Christ has always been God, He took on the form of man to identify with mankind, and was obedient to the point of death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore, God highly exalted Him and gave Him a name above every name (Philippians 2:6-11).


Although Jesus Christ limited Himself as being 100% human, He was also 100% God.


Next: Jesus Christ is God the Great and Mighty God


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Infallible (Perfect, Flawless) Proof that Jesus Christ is God the Creator - Part I


There are many proofs that Jesus Christ is God. I am going to provide enough to assure the readers of several scriptures that support this infallible truth. Also, there will be a brief breakdown of each scripture.


I feel it is appropriate to start with Jesus as the Creator. Doesn’t the Bible say that God created everything (Genesis, chapter 1)? That is a very valid point. How could Jesus Christ not be God if the Word of God also said Christ created (Colossians 1:12-17)? Are there multiple Gods? Of course not! There are many gods, but only one true and living God (Triune) in three persons (1 John 5:7).


When God made humans in His image; He said let Us (Genesis 1:26). So, who are the Us? God the Father, God the Son and God the Spirit; the three in one. This is also proof that the Spirit of God was involved in creation (Genesis 1:2).


There was only one time in history where there was a disconnect between the Triune God. This occurred when Jesus died for the sins of the world. The moment before His death, Jesus said: My God, My God, why have you forsaken Me (Matthew 27:46)?


Jesus asked God the question because He knew He would be separated from God momentarily, to take on the sins of the world (2 Corinthians 5:21). In other words, Jesus who knew no sin became sin for us; He took our place. Sin separates us from God, that’s why the Savior was/is necessary.


Even still, why does the Bible say Jesus Christ was the Word and the Word was God (John 1:3)? This is further proof of who this Awesome Jesus Christ is; He is God indeed. But He came in the flesh as the Son of God to take away sins and to identify with us humans (Hebrews 4:15).


Jesus was born of a woman, just as we are born from the womb of a woman. However, the difference in His birth and our birth is that a man had to be involved for us to be conceived. God told Adam and Eve to be fruitful, multiply, replenish (fill) the earth…(Genesis 1:28). Jesus’ birth of the virgin Mary was conceived by the Holy Spirit (Isaiah 7:14, Luke 1:26-35), otherwise He would have been born in sin as we were.


For your information: Although Joseph and Mary were married, their marriage had not been consummated (there was no sex between them). And Isaiah 7:14 states that His name will be called Emmanuel meaning God with us. God became flesh (Jesus Christ) and dwelt with us (John 1:14).


Now that you have learned the truth about Jesus Christ being God the Creator, you will be able to tell others according to the Word of God. We know that God cannot lie (Numbers 23:19, Hebrews 6:18). As a matter of Fact, the Word says, let God be true and every man be a liar (Romans 3:4).


Next: Jesus Christ,  I AM


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

The Infallible (Perfect, Flawless) Proof that Jesus Christ is God

A Breakdown of the Scriptures for this Series – Part 3 of Introduction

God has called us to witness to the lost (Matthew 28:19, 1 Corinthians 3:6-9).


Matthew 28:18-19- Teaching what you have learned is important in witnessing; how can you share what you don’t know? It is one thing to be told something, but it is another thing to be taught principles so one can grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18). Notice the Word teach in Matthew 28:19, and Jesus taught (Matthew 5:2).


1 Corinthians 3:6-9 – One plants the Word; another waters the Word. In other words, we are called to witness, but it may be done according to what is going on in the person’s life. God may put you in the path of a person that you will be able to witness the Word and give your personal testimony as how you were delivered from sin and the circumstance that surrounded your life. Remember this, we cannot save anybody; only God can save souls.


John 16:13 – The Holy Spirit will guide you, if you allow Him to lead you to whom and where He sends you and your witness will be effective. When you follow the Holy Spirit’s directions, you won’t put yourself in the position to be attacked by those who don’t want to hear the truth. They also can make a spectacle of you and that is embarrassing. This is what casting your pearls to swine and giving what is holy to dogs means. (Matthew 7:6). The Word of God is precious.


You must believe without a doubt (Hebrews 11:6) that Jesus Christ is God in order to persuade or convince someone else; no forcing, of course. How can you tell someone else about saving faith if you don’t believe what the Word of God says or if you don’t understand how to convince someone who says Jesus was a god, or that no one can match Jesus - like Mohammad, or any other prophet?


Having knowledge is no good, without Love - love is not rude (1 Corinthians 13:5), and love covers a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8). There is an old adage stated like this: “It is easier to catch flies with honey, than it is with vinegar”. After all, we are fishers of men (Matthew 4:19).


My desire is to see you grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18). It takes time to grow, so be patient and have a desire to grow (1 Peter 2:2). It is like a baby being developed as an infant, into childhood stage, from there to pre-teen and on to the teenage years, and into adulthood. That is approximately eighteen years. I have been born-again since 1982 and I am still growing. Spiritual growth never stops.


Paul was still learning even though he was about to die in prison; he told Timothy this: When you come, be sure to bring the coat I left with Carpus at Troas (it was damp and cold in the dungeon) . Also bring my books, especially my papers (2 Timothy 4:13).


Next: The Infallible (Perfect, Flawless) Proof that Jesus Christ is God- Part I


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Infallible (Perfect, Flawless) Proof that Jesus Christ is God

A Breakdown of the Scriptures for this Series – Part 2 of the Introduction

Let’s start with the sequence of scriptures from the previous message.


2 Timothy 2:15

English Standard Version – Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the Word of Truth.


How can you tell others that Jesus Christ is God, when you don’t know or understand the Word of God? There is a difference between reading or skimming over the Word and studying it. 


 When you see the word work, it means to labor - digging into the scriptures is like someone who plants a garden; the ground has to be dug up before anything can be planted in it. The person planting the garden needs tools to work with (gloves, hoe, etc.). They need to have knowledge about cultivating and when to plant and whatever is to be planted at that given time. It takes all of this to produce a good harvest.


You will need different tools as you study the Word of God (Bible, dictionary, concordance, etc.). It is necessary to know the history, culture and the language. Just as the person who plants the garden is pleased when the harvest produces vegetables, fruit, etc., we will not be ashamed because the Word of God has been rightly (carefully) handled. Therefore, we meet God’s approval and He is pleased with us.


Matthew 5:13-15

Verse 13: You are the salt of the earth… but if the salt has lost its flavor, it is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet. In other words, if your salt has no flavor, no one wants to hear what you say. 


Salt is a preservative; Example: people fully cover a ham with salt to keep the maggots from taking over, put it in the smokehouse to cure and when it was finished curing, it was very tasty. That is the way the Word of God is (Psalm 34:8).


During some of the Bible times, salt was used as a salary (wages) for people who labored, and the salt was extremely valuable, because it was hard to get. The word salary came from salt.


Salt is also used for medicinal purposes, such as putting it on an open wound. Although it stings, this helps to bring healing. Salt in the spiritual realm may not feel good, but it is good for us. The Word of God is sharp and sometimes cut to the very core (Hebrews 4:12). This is not the same as someone who doesn’t show love; it is another way that conviction leads the person to repentance (2 Corinthians 7:10).


Verses 14-15: You are the light of the world. A city sitting on a hill cannot be hidden …… in the same way, let your light shine before others, so they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is heaven.


Somebody is watching the way we live. Let’s not turn people off by professing to be one way and living another way. Example: How are you going out to nightclubs on Saturday night, drinking like a fish (being drunk) and go in the church on Sunday and sing in the choir or usher, etc.?


Before my new birth; I went to the clubs and saw some of those church folks doing the same thing I was doing. That was a turn-off, and I did not want to step my foot in a church. As a matter of fact, if they had asked me to attend church or said something about Jesus, I would have said: “How dare you talk about Jesus to me”.


Next: God has called us to witness to the lost (Matthew 28:19, Corinthians 3:6-9).

Infallible (perfect, flawless) Proof that Jesus Christ is God – Breakdown of Scriptures (Part 3)


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett  

The Infallible (Perfect, Flawless) Proof that Jesus Christ is God

Introduction


The Holy Spirit is leading me to do the work of Evangelist via the internet and to help God’s children to understand how to defend the faith. The Word of God needs no defense, but we need to learn how and when to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ to a lost and dying world.


Do you know how to share with others that Jesus Christ is God? This series will help you to have a better understanding.

I will continue with this Series two times a week until it is complete. It is necessary for the readers to have a brief break-down of each scripture in this series.


These scriptures are some pointers in sharing effectively; for instance:

No study, no effectiveness (2 Timothy 2:15).


If the light is not shining, one cannot bring others out of darkness (Matthew 5:13-15). People are more receptive to those who have lights. You must walk the walk as well as talk the talk.


God has called us to witness and minister to the lost about His love and plan of Salvation; one waters and another plants, but God is the only One who can bring increase/save (Corinthians 3:6-9).


As we mature, we will learn to be led by the Holy Spirit (John 16:13), which helps us not to cast our pearls to swine, nor give what is holy to dogs (Matthew 7:6).


You must believe without a doubt (Hebrews 11:6) that Jesus Christ is God in order to persuade or convince someone else; no forcing, of course.


Having knowledge and understanding is no good, without Love (1 Corinthians, chapter 13, 1 Peter 4:8). Example: I have seen some people witnessing; they were yelling and screaming. This will not catch fish; you must be quiet and gentle, souls/fish are important. After all, we are fishers of men (Matthew 4:19).


My desire is to see you grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18). I encourage you to write scriptures from the messages for references.


Finally, you must have a desire to grow (1 Peter 2:2).


Next: The Infallible (perfect, flawless) Proof that Jesus Christ is God

A Breakdown of the Scriptures for this Series – Part 2 of the Introduction


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett  

Judging Righteously        

This message is a follow-up to judging wrongly. As born-again believers, we can judge a brother or sister’s actions (1 Corinthians, chapter 5), that is, if we are not doing the same thing. So, if they profess to be born-again despite their actions, it is our place to deal with the person who is living like a sinner. 


When we read 1 Corinthians, chapter 5, it is talking about a man who professed to be born-again but was known to be having sex with his father’s wife, and the church was not grievious about it.


Paul sent the warning to tell them if they did not stop this man’s ungodly actions, the church was to expel him (put him out), because the leaven (sin) would affect others. Putting him out of the church would allow satan to beat his flesh that his spirit would be saved on the day the Lord Jesus returns. In other words, that this would make him come to his senses.


Further reading in that same chapter Paul addressed other sins; that they/we are not to keep company with those who profess to be born-again believers and were known to be committing these sins. This is what the Apostle Paul wrote to the church at Corinth: I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people…. Paul is not talking about those unsaved people; we are to be lights to them, but we are not to take part in their sins.


Paul goes on: I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of a Christian, if he/she is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, an idolater, reviler (verbally attack someone; call them names), drunkard or swindler- not even eat with such a one. Paul is saying that we don’t judge the unbelievers, but we are to judge those on in inside (the believers). God judges the unbelievers.


Keeping company with those who profess to be born-again and are living ungodly, is saying that we agree with what they are doing. The principle is the same as it is with unbelievers; we are not to partake of their sins (2 Corinthians 6:14-17). We have been changed; our lives are not the same (2 Corinthians 5:17). We are in the world to be a light (Matthew 5:13-16), but we are not of this world (John 17:16), our citizenship is in heaven (Philippians 3:20), therefore, we are to live like children who belong to the kingdom of God.


In my past experiences, I have seen some of these sins swept under the carpet in the church. What happened to God’s standard for His children to live by?


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

Judging Wrongly (Un-righteously)


After writing about “How Firm is Your Foundation” - Parts 1 and 2, about those who are born-again and fall back into the world, I feel it is beneficial for readers to be careful how they judge others. God is the only One who knows the heart of everyone: Do not judge so that you will not be judged- take the log out of your own eye before taking the splinter out of someone else’s eye (Matthew 7:1-5).


There was a group of people who always saw fault in others but did not see themselves; Jesus called these type of people hypocrites (Matthew 7:5).


Jesus said: Let the wheat and the tare (weeds) grow together, and at the end of the harvest, He would do the separating (Matthew 13:24-30). Why would Jesus tell them He would do the separating? Because they were not able to tell the wheat from the tare. This parable certainly indicates that satan sets out to deceive the church by having some of his children mingle with them. Let’s go back to, only God knows the heart of every person.


Being that we are human beings who are still not perfect, we could make the wrong choice because of someone’s actions. There will be two judgments; one for the righteous saints and one for the wicked sinners: The great white throne judgement is for sinners (Revelation 20:11-15) and the judgement seat of Christ is for the saints (2 Corinthians 5:10).


When some men told Jesus that they caught the adulterous woman in the very act, Jesus bent down and wrote on the ground; then He said he who does not have sin (the same sin), let him cast the first stone. How could they accuse her when they were doing the same thing? (John 8:1-11).


When Jesus asked the woman where her accusers were, she said: No man Lord. Her accusers had left. Why had their accusers left? They were guilty hypocrites.

What about all of us who fall into sin? The Word of God says, if anyone says they have not sinned they are a liar and the truth is not in them (1 John 1:8).


At least two people told me I wasn’t saved because I was still smoking cigarettes. This is what I said to myself: “I don’t care what they say; I know I am saved”. When someone judges like that, it indicates they are not mature, because a mature person would understand that takes time to change; we grow in grace and knowledge (2 Peter 3:18).


When the Bible speaks of us being new creatures, it means the spirit part of us only. We still have these flesh bodies that will not be perfected until we reach heaven. We still have the soul which is our mind, will and emotions, that are being worked on until we reach heaven. If we are not careful, we can fall into that same bad judgmental habit again. We haven’t arrived yet!


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett            

What Happens to Born-Again Believers Who Go Back Into the World?

Some people do not believe that once a person is saved, they are always saved (born-again). They believe some born-again believers can lose their salvation; evidently this is hinging on how the people live. I have talked to people over the years who even said you can pluck yourself out of God’s hand; that is totally contrary to the Word of God (John 10:29). To me, that is saying that the person is greater than God.


Years ago, I used the natural birth from the mother and compared it with the spiritual or second birth, which is the new birth (John 3:3-8.). When one is born from the mother’s womb, they are always the mother’s child, and nothing can change that regardless of what happens. Even in adoption, the birth mother’s name is on the original birth certificate that has been stamped with a seal; there is an amended birth certificate after the adoption is finalized.


Paul used the term adoption because we have come from our old life and have been adopted as God’s children (Romans 8:15, Galatians 4:1-5). Let’s put it like this, we are still biologically our mother’s child in the natural. However, once we become born-again (spiritual birth), we have been adopted and according to Roman law, the adopted child has more rights than the biological child and the adoption cannot be rescinded.


Since our adoption cannot be rescinded, no one can lose their salvation, it is the gift of God (John 3:16, Ephesians 2:8-9). With the new birth, our names have been written in the book of life (Revelation 21:27), sealed by the Holy Spirit and nothing can change that (Ephesians 4:30).


There are some who don’t fulfill their purpose, but that does not mean they are not born-again. The servant with one talent buried what was given to him. When his master (Jesus) returned for him to give account of his works, he did not get rewarded (Matthew 25:24-30). This is symbolic of the Judgement Seat of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:10). This person did not lose his salvation, because only those who are born-again will stand before Christ to give account of his deeds. The ungodly shall not have the same judgement (Psalm 1:4-6, Revelation 20:11-15).


When the children f God stand before Christ and see His nail scarred hands; how He loved them so much that He gave it all up just for them, there will be weeping and gritting of teeth (Matthew 25:30), and eventually God will wipe the tears from their eyes (Revelation 21:4). Jesus’ suffering, death, burial and resurrection was for all of us, that’s the reason we should do everything we can to show how much we appreciate what God did for us through His Son Jesus.


This is an example of someone who went back into the world. His name was Demas; he started off on the right path, but he got side-tracked. Paul never said he was lost, he just said Demas forsook him because he loved this present world (2 Timothy 4:10a). Demas was not fully committed to the work of the ministry.


I have experienced these situations many times with several females who said they wanted to be like me. I don’t want anyone to be like me accept to follow me as I follow Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1). They eventually left me. I believe when they knew how sold out I am, that was not what they really wanted.


Most people who know me say that the Word of God is always coming out of my mouth. Until the Lord takes me out of this world, I will continue to talk about the Lord. He’s been too good for me to keep my mouth shut.


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett 

What Happened to Some of the People in the Bible Who Committed Sins?​

It started with Adam when he disobeyed God, what he did affected the entire human race and the earth became cursed. I have heard some people question if Adam went to hell. God saved Adam, His son (Luke 3:38) from hell/lake of fire and eternal destruction.


Before explaining how Adam could not have gone to hell, let’s look at him being God’s son: God created Adam, who was His son (Genesis 2:7). You may say, “I thought Jesus was God’s only Son”. This is true in that Jesus became the Son of God when His body was prepared (Hebrews 10:5). He was born of a virgin (Luke 1:26-38). However, Jesus was always the Word; when the Word became flesh, He became the Son of God (John 1:1, 14); Jesus was never created, Jesus was the Creator (Colossians 1:16-18).


This is what the scripture says after Adam disobeyed God. Adam and Eve made aprons from fig leaves to cover their shame, which stemmed from the sin of disobedience (Genesis 3:1-14); but God killed an animal and clothed them with skins of the animal (Genesis 3:21).


Also, the blood of the animal was symbolic of Jesus’ blood being shed for the sins of the world, which was prophesied by God in Genesis 3:15 – meaning that Jesus was going to be born of virgin birth, the devil would bruise Jesus’ feet when Jesus went to the cross to die for the sins of the world, but Jesus, the Son of the virgin would bruise the devil’s head; meaning he would take all power from the devil/satan (Matthew 28:18).


God said David was a man after his own heart (1 Samuel 13:14, Acts 13:22). Although David’s heart was right in the sight of God, he still had issues; he was an adulterer and he had another man’s innocent blood shed (2 Samuel, chapter 11). The sword never left his house (2 Samuel 12:10-11); David had some real family problems, yet He was repentant (Psalm 51).


Paul finished his course (2 Timothy 4:6-8); was he perfect? Of course, not - Paul talked about the problems in his flesh, that it was a struggle and there was nothing good in his flesh (Romans 7:14-25).


Some say if you fall back into the same sin, there was no true repentance. That is no true. There could be a stronghold that has you gripped and at times, that same sin will overpower you in those times of weakness. You truly were sincere when you asked God to forgive you. Again, God knows the heart of every person.


I have been connected to Christian Drug Rehabs for many years and was personally involved in the lives of these people. I truly believe in my heart they wanted to be set free, but because the temptation to try a little hit was so strong, they gave into it.


To cap all this off, I am guilty of falling into sin, and I had fallen from grace. But I learned that where there is sin, there is also grace; as a matter of fact, no one out sins God’s grace (Romans 5:20). Did God still love me? Of course, He did and He still loves me.


This does not give us a license to sin or take God’s grace for granted. We should be humbled to know that no matter what we do, it does not change God’s love for us. Once we confess our sins (1 John 1:9), we should not allow the devil to put us into condemnation (Romans 8:1).


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett     

How Firm is Your Foundation? Define Yourself - What Kind of Ground Does Your Life Represent?

Who is the Sower and who is the Seed? Jesus is the Sower, and the Seed is the Word of God.


These scriptures are talking about unsaved people except for the one where the seed was sown on good ground.


I want to compare these scriptures with different types of Christians, and the challenge is for the readers to identify where they are in their walk/relationship with Christ. The Bible speaks of carnal (worldly) Christians who walk according to the flesh and it is difficult to distinguish them from unsaved people (Romans 8:6-10, 1 Corinthians 3:1-3).


Now to the parable of the Sower and the Seed (Mark 4:1-8, 15-20)


1) Wayside (verses 4, 15) The fowls (birds) of the air came and devoured it (ate it all, leaving nothing). The Seed/Word was sown to the way-siders; when they heard, satan came immediately and took the Word that was sown in their hearts - many Jews heard the Word of God and knew the law, but they were not born-again. How do I know this? John 1:11-12 says that Jesus came to His own, but they did not receive Him. Many people go to church and other places where the Word is taught, yet they are not born-again.


2) Stony ground (verses 5-6, 16-17) Some fell on stony ground where there was not much earth and immediately it sprang up because there was no depth of earth. When the sun came up, it scorched and because it had no root it withered away. The stony/hard hearted immediately receive the Word with gladness, and they have no root in themselves and endure but for a time; afterward when afflictions or persecution come for the Word’s sake, they are easily offended.


Even though these people are not born-again, they remind me of baby Christians who take offense at one church and run to another church. I call them church-hoppers. They don’t realize every church has issues and is not perfect.


3) Thorns (verses 7, 18-19) And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it and it produced no fruit. The ones sown among thorns hear the Word; but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the lust of other things entering in, choke the Word and it becomes unfruitful.


Some born-again believers get caught up in the things of the world and their focus is more on things than it is on God; they are referred to as canal Christians who act like unsaved people (Romans 8:6-10, 1 Corinthians 3:1-3).


The children of God are told to seek Him first and His righteousness and all these things will be added (Matthew 6:33). One of Paul’s ministers got so caught up in worldly things that he deserted Paul and went back into the world (2 Timothy 4:10).


I didn’t have enough room in this message for the good ground – it will be next


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett

How Firm is Your Foundation? Define Yourself - What Kind of ground does your life represent? Part 2

4) Good Ground (Mark 4:8, 20) And others fell on good ground and produced fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth some thirty and some sixty and some a hundredfold.


Let’s talk about the folds, which represent the quality of service produced in each person’s life. Someone with the thirty-fold could have done better; however, they did receive a reward. The ones with the sixty-fold did better than the servant with the thirty-fold. Both of these servants were given the abilities (grace), because God had already appointed and anointed the servants to fulfill their purpose.


The hundred-fold is like the two servants who maximized their call, even though they were not given the same amount of responsibilities (Matthew 25:21, 23). Paul the Apostle is an example of someone who maximized his call; he fought the good fight of faith; he finished his course (2 Timothy 4:6-8.). Paul knew what it meant to run a race and he was determined to run on to the very end.


Therefore, he did whatever was necessary to complete his assignment- through difficult times, the road was rough, the ocean waters were choppy, he endured hard trials, persecutions, physical and emotional assaults, during his time in prison cells; yet through it all, Paul persevered.


It is not how long one lives on the earth, but what one does with his or her life is important. Jesus lived thirty-three years and fulfilled the plan God had for Him on this earth; His public ministry lasted three years. Jesus maximized what He was sent here to do - He came to set the captives free (Isaiah 61:1, Luke 4:18).


What does good ground mean? The children of God are rooted on the foundation of Christ. They are good disciples/learners (Matthew 5:2); they study the Word of God diligently (2 Timothy 2:15); they pray effectively (Luke 18:1, James 5:16b); they do whatever the Word tells them, without doubting (Hebrews 11:6).


They love God and they love people (John 13:34-35). They carry the Good News of Jesus Christ boldly, unashamedly and confidently (Romans 1:16); they are willing to share whenever the door of opportunity opens (Matthew 28:19-20).


After reading these two messages, can you truthfully say that your foundation is firm? That you are founded on the Solid Rock and that your ground is not sinking? God knows each of us better than we know ourselves. If you are shifting, shaky or leaning, I encourage you to allow the Lord God Almighty/His Spirit to take control and start walking in your destiny.


Don’t you want to hear the Lord say: “Well done, good and Faithful servant, you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many? (Matthew 25:21, 23)


I am going to continue with “What Happens to Born-Again Believers Who go Back into the World?"


Unshackled ~ Betty A. Burnett 











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