Posted in theology

Christ’s glorious name is upon us, let us show why we’re different

By Elizabeth Prata

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” (Colossians 3:15-17)

Christ called us to be different. To be salt, which is a preservative, and light, which is shining to show our works in His name and give Him glory. We cannot be hid. Though you may have lost your job and want to hide, you cannot. You must not. Though your brother may have wronged you, you cannot hold a grudge and hide from fellowship. You must not.

NOW is the time for which we have been put on the earth, for just such a time as this. We should be seen singing praises, hosannas, psalms to Him and about Him with all joy! We need to have peace with each other and in our hearts. Everything we do, let us do for Jesus, He who became sin and died for ours. Even now, especially now, the kind of Christians Paul was urging the Colossians to be, let US be!

Posted in theology

A Gratitude Morning

By Elizabeth Prata

God thank you for the rain. Thank you for the refreshment from the skies of your bounty, and even as the rain drops fall I am reminded of the Living water that is Jesus. He refreshes and renews all the time, not just the ground but the soul. He who drinks of His water will never be thirsty again. (John 4:13).

Thank You for the beautiful creation, which will be greened after this refreshment. But even as its current beauty is marred by the curse of sin, I long to see Your creation in its full glory. Today I am grateful for the pastures and the rain and the beauty, even so, I know I am seeing through a glass darkly. On Your day I will see everything clearly. (1 Corinthians 13:12).

I awake this morning in the world this morning but I am not of the world. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)

I’m grateful to God the Father, Jesus the Messiah and the Holy Spirit for my future with Him, my salvation, my sanctification, for hearing prayer, for the saints here on earth. How long this message would be if I listed all for which I am grateful! He is my All in All.

Posted in theology

Is your church, your friend, your small group going progressive? Here’s how to tell

By Elizabeth Prata

I like this video. Alisa Childers presents in simple and straightforward manner, 5 signs to watch or listen for to see if your church is inching toward progressivism. I especially liked the art of what to listen for in specific phrases you might hear at church, small group, or in your friends. It’s helpful, being accurate and practical. It’s just 6 minutes and well worth your time.

How to Spot the Danger Signs of Progressive Christianity in Your Church

Posted in theology

A grateful heart withstands a shaking

By Elizabeth Prata

As this year draws to its close: I stand on the Cornerstone of all creation, because the mercy of Jesus saved me lo those many years ago. Gratitude fills my heart and my life with the blessings He has delivered to me, first fruit of which is that precious salvation. He Who is the fount from which all beneficence flows, in His mercy accepted my piteous cries for forgiveness and smiled upon my soul, bringing light and peace.

He continued to bless me by sealing the Holy Spirit within me to rely upon as my guide and teacher. He allows me to grow in His light and remain upon His paths by sending me wisdom as I read His Holy Word. He gives me earthly fulfillments- I am not hungry, I am in a warm home, I am clothed and I am employed. I learn from Paul who said to the Philippians,

Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:11-13)

Contentment no matter the circumstance is truly a gift. Do you have a grateful heart as this year closes? The end time is a period when the Lord is shaking heaven and earth, and we see what remains. “At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, “Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” (Hebrews 12:26).

Since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our “God is a consuming fire.” (Hebrews 12:26-29). Gratitude and contentment in the midst of terrible circumstances is key to remaining unshaken. Paul was unshaken, content in all that occurred.

So was Abraham Lincoln. His Proclamation in 1863 at the height of the US Civil War was The basis of the holiday we celebrate nowadays. Lincoln’s Thanksgiving proclamation was gratitude to the LORD. Notice how his decree began, not with a listing of current troubles, and if any man had a right to complain it was Lincoln. But the proclamation began with gratitude toward the Lord for blessings. Lincoln begins:

“The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God.”

“In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union.

“Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle, or the ship; the axe had enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years, with large increase of freedom.”

“No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.”

“It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.”

“And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.”

“In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the city of Washington, this third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three…” (1863. end Lincoln proclamation)

Friend, you are of the Kingdom – the Kingdom that will not be shaken! My prayer for you is that your heart is filled with gratitude for all things, no matter the circumstance.

Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.” (Colossians 3:16).

Further Resources:

How President Lincoln Created Thanksgiving

Posted in theology

The premier thankfulness

By Elizabeth Prata

About Thanksgiving, the holiday- I’m reminded of the hymn, “Praise God from Whom all blessings flow.” My thankfulness stems from the root of it all: my salvation. I’m thankful Jesus came, taught, died and rose again for pardon of my sins. I’m thankful for the Holy Spirit’s ministry to guide me on all straight paths in His Light. I’m thankful for Father God Who made us in His image….and did not wipe us all out in the Flood. I’m thankful that He sends the angels to protect me. Am I thankful for friends? For turkey? For my job? Absolutely. But the gratitude for secular things pale in comparison to the center of the universe: GOD, and the fact that He resides in me through His grace and mercy. From that One Truth, all other blessings flow.

The most important question you can ask yourself at Thanksgiving, is “Am I thankful I’m saved?”

Posted in theology

Everything is beautiful

By Elizabeth Prata

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” (Ecclesiastes 3:11)

Wow.

‘He has made everything beautiful in its time’. In my opinion, babies, like babies. If you ever gazed on a sleeping baby you have seen beauty in its time.

Continue reading “Everything is beautiful”
Posted in theology

Marooned with husband: A Sailing Story

By Elizabeth Prata

For two years in the 1990s I was a live-aboard yachtsman on a 37 foot sailboat. My husband and I sailed from Maine to the Bahamas and back, twice.

Our boat

You might have heard about the Florida “snowbirds” who travel from some northern snowy state to Florida for the season to escape the cold. Liveaboard yachtsmen do that too, but aboard their own boats. We’d decided to give it a try, since my husband had sailing experience from owning a schooner in previous years. Solo sailing (“singlehanding” in the yachting lingo) is hard and only for the intrepid, but when I appeared on the scene he decided that the time was right and the two of us went off into the sunset.

Continue reading “Marooned with husband: A Sailing Story”
Posted in theology

A Few Thoughts

By Elizabeth Prata

Some random thoughts…

Do you ever pray and pray and then the thing you prayed for…the opposite happened? And then you feel like you didn’t pray enough? Or with enough fervency? When what you were praying for fell through and you think, it’s your fault? “If I prayed more…” “If I prayed more strongly…” “If I prayed better…”

I know it’s not up to me. God is sovereign. The verse says the prayers of a righteous man avail much. (James 5:16). It doesn’t say the prayers of a righteous man avail all. Still, it’s hard not to wonder, “Could I have done more?”


I was a journalist in the early 2000’s. I covered local politics and government. It really IS like watching sausage being made…sometimes rotten sausage. Messy and unappetizing. The local powers that be at the time had a stranglehold on the town. Nepotism reigned, town hall department heads were filled with relatives and friends. They felt like they owned the town. They felt entitled to do what they wanted. The newspaper at the time had a monopoly and created the narrative the officials desired, which reflected the elites’ views. The townspeople had to accept it because they didn’t have an alternative. But they were often angry and upset.

I came along and established a free and fair objective newspaper. I reported the truth, without fear or favor. In one incident, I was covering a local Town Council race and discovered that some of the valid write-in votes had been thrown out. Amazingly, I got the election clerk at the time on the record saying she and the poll workers threw them out “because they didn’t like the names that were written in”.

This was around 2003 or so. Seventeen years ago…a different time. I was incensed. When it came out in the paper the people were incensed. The write-ins would not have made any difference to the outcome of the race. But it made a huge difference to the person that took their precious vote, considered who to write in, and placed their invaluable emblem of free and fair election into the ballot box. That it was thrown out by elites with a false sense of entitlement was provoking in the extreme.

The Town Manager was no fan of mine but he did have a sense of right and wrong. Throwing out votes was wrong. He contacted the Secretary of State to ask what to do. The ballots had already been sealed and sent to the capitol. I don’t remember what happened after that, except that the Election Clerk almost lost her job, was reprimanded, and had to attend trainings for a while afterward.

And less than half a generation later, we have alleged wholesale election fraud in the 2020 Presidential Election. Ballots thrown out, found in ditches, others never mailed. And the mainstream press, the people I used to call my colleagues, failing to cover it. Social media suppressing it. I’m more than disappointed, and also more than relieved I don’t have to call them my colleagues any more.

It made me think of how low we’ve sunk- from an embedded town manager caring enough about someone’s local write-in vote to act immediately, to workers, politicos, and citizens allegedly participating in national fraud at the highest level…and in such a short time.

To me, it’s a grief, but it’s also a way to praise and admire my God. His ways are not our ways. His creativity in bringing about His will & plan is breathtakingly awe-inspiring. Though I do not like the progression of what I see, I much more revere what I don’t see, that is, His working in the world as Supreme God. God is working. We may not always like the sausage we’re served, but it is God who made it, and thus, worthy of consumption.



“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the LORD. (Isaiah 55:8)


Jesus said we do not need to worry. Matthew 6:25: “For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

So let us watch and marvel at His word, feel joy in His promises, even as we see others’ needs rise and they walk about in confusion and fear…because that represents a tremendous opportunity to share Jesus with them!


Posted in theology

Why the United States seems to have gone crazy

By Elizabeth Prata

Yesterday on the blog I asked the question “Is America Under Wrath?” The answer is yes. Humans have been under God’s wrath since the Garden. I noted, however, that there are different kinds of wrath. We think of eternal wrath, as in lost people enduring for their punishment for their sins in hell. We also might think of eschatological wrath, the fire and brimstone kind of holy fury poured out on the world during the end of the last days during the Tribulation. But there is also a sowing and reaping wrath, cataclysmic wrath, and for today’s discussion, the wrath of abandonment.

Continue reading “Why the United States seems to have gone crazy”
Posted in prophecy, theology

Is America under wrath?

By Elizabeth Prata

The year 2020 has been a hard one. There hasn’t been a lot of good news. In fact it has been a grief to see countries close and cities lock down, churches shuttered, and missionaries booted out, making it difficult to personally gather to worship Jesus and share the Good News. Time has passed and we’re now looking at 2021, but no one except God knows if the upcoming year will be any better for us here in America or elsewhere.

People are asking, “Is the wrath of God upon us?” “Is the wrath of God about to be poured down?” “Is judgment here?”

Yes. But it has been since the Garden. Let me explain the different kinds of wrath related to different kinds of judgment. Because there are different types of wrath and except for the eschatological wrath due to come at the end of the last days, the other kinds of wrath have always been in play.

When we think of ‘God’s wrath’ or ‘Judgment’, we think of the stark example of what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah (and Admah and Zeboiim) in Genesis 19. Those sinful cities serve as an example of what happens when a town gives itself over to indulging in immorality, like widespread homosexuality. (Jude 1:7). God rained down fire and brimstone, destroying the cities and all flesh that were within them.

But there are actually different types of wrath. Some are unseen because they’re internal, others are seen but difficult to identify specifically as wrath or simply a ‘natural’ a consequence of the Fall. Some wrath of God abides on the ungodly every day, and it always has since Genesis 3.

Thomas Hooker, a Puritan preacher of the 1600s, said in his book The application of redemption by the effectual work of the word, and spirit of Christ, for the bringing home of lost sinners to God (don’t you love their lengthy titles, lol? And their antiquated spelling? )

who shal comfort, who can releeve what ever he doth, wherever he is, the wrath God abides upon him, thou art not within the Mercy nor the compass of that Redemption?

Jonathan Edwards said the word “wrath” 52 times in his famous sermon Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. He said “anger” 6 times. He preached,

The Wrath of God burns against them, their Damnation don’t slumber, the Pit is prepared, the Fire is made ready, the Furnace is now hot, ready to receive them, the Flames do now rage and glow.

What IS the wrath? Most people, if they think of God’s wrath at all either think of Jesus exhausting it on the cross for forgiven sinners, or the last day when Jesus returns in wrath, blood, fire etc to pour His wrath out on unforgiven sinners.

The wrath of God is not an easy topic. It is not a popular topic. It is not often directly preached from pulpits, nor spoken of on social media or in conversation. But it is an important topic. Upon death, the final state of all humans who were not saved during life will be to endure horrific wrath forever. The wrath hangs over every unsaved person while they are alive.

The wrath is an attribute of God. And though we love to think of Jesus the babe meek & mild, especially during Christmas season, He is also wrathful. He will return to deliver His stored-up wrath one day.

John MacArthur preached on this a number of times, here is a paraphrase / excerpt from one of the sermons. Please note that MacArthur took the biblical evidence of wrath and placed them in a descriptive list.

1. Eternal wrath – because it is the punishment that God brings upon unbelieving sinners forever in hell. (Matthew 25:41-46, many other verses).
2. Eschatological wrath, that is the wrath of God that is released at the end of the world described by some of the Old Testament prophets, described by Jesus Christ Himself in the Olivet Discourse, and clearly laid out for us in the book of Revelation. (Luke 21:23, Romans 2:5, Revelation 6-18).
3. Cataclysmic wrath, like a tsunami, a volcano, a hurricane, an earthquake… Noah’s Flood and the destruction of Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, & Zeboiim are examples of this wrath. Cataclysms are a reflection of the judgment of God. (Numbers 16:31-35).
4. Consequential wrath. Consequential wrath is the sowing and reaping wrath, you live a certain kind of life and you set in motion certain forces that will produce judgment. The resulting wrath can be reflective of the consequence of the sin-choice a person makes. (Acts 5:4-5, 1 Corinthians 11:29-30). AIDS was a consequential wrath for indulging in homosexuality.
5. The wrath of abandonment. It is that wrath exhibited by God when He turns His back on a group, society, or individual. (Romans 1:24, 28, 28).

We should be careful though, not to attribute any particular event as an example of a specific kind of wrath. The tornado-wind that destroyed Job’s house was not wrath. (Job 18:18). The man born blind was not experiencing a lifetime of infirmity due to sin. (John 9:2-3). The Tower of Siloam fell over because the Tower of Siloam fell over. (Luke 13:4). Someone whom God has seemed to have turned over to their sin in a wrath of abandonment could become the unlikeliest convert (Saul/Paul).

Unlike in Edwards or Hooker’s time, in today’s Christianity God is talked of as a kindly grandfather in the sky, or Jesus is treated as a romantic boyfriend or buddy. However, God’s wrath is real. It is already present and it is also to come. Humans may not live any way we want and God will sit idly by smiling upon His wayward children. He has high moral standards and a high holy standard. Departure from His standard will result in wrath. Since none of us can attain these standards on our own, it means we are all due to experience His wrath. This presents a problem because none is righteous, no, not one. We are all separated from God. Yet He desires communion with His creatures.

Graciously, Jesus lived a perfectly holy life, died on the cross as the sacrifice, having exhausted all of God’s wrath for those whom He will save, and after laying dead in the tomb for three days, God raised Jesus to life. Those who repent of their sins and turn to Jesus as Lord and Savior will never experience His wrath. Praise God for that.

We do seem to be experiencing a wrath of abandonment here in America at present. I’ll write about that tomorrow on why I think so and explore Romans 1 as the biblical foundation for why I believe it.

Since we have now been justified by His blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through Him! (Romans 5:9).

Repent now, while there is still time.

After the arrest of John, Jesus went into Galilee and proclaimed the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” (Mark 1:14-15).

wrath verse

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Further Reading

Delivered By Grace: The Wrath of God

GotQuestions: What is the biblical understanding of the wrath of God?