The Real Meaning of the "Cross of Christ"

Friday, March 29, 2013 Bryan Hudson 0 Comments

Galatians 6:4, May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. 

People today, including Christians, boast of many deeds and attributes. But all of this pales in comparison to what Jesus Christ accomplished.

The apostle Paul was a man of extraordinary intellect and accomplishment in his sphere as a Jewish leader. After encountering Jesus, Paul gained the insight to boldly declare that he would boast in nothing except the "cross of Jesus Christ."

Paul transformed the cross from a Roman instrument of death to life-change power through Jesus' death and resurrection.

The cross is the place where our sinful self died. The cross of Christ is no longer the instrument of Christ's death, but the spiritual reality of our changed (or crucified) lives because if His death, burial and resurrection.

The cross is a filter that separates out the things that defeat us.

The cross is a memorial that stands to reminds us of the One who fought and won THE strategic battle that saved our lives forever!

The cross is not something that we wear around our necks, but the truth of a redeemed life on display for the world to see.

Only boast in what Jesus has done for you!


Blessings of the Sixth Day: How God Made You

Wednesday, March 13, 2013 Bryan Hudson 0 Comments

EPH 1:3, Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4]  just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love.

Gen. 1:26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all[b] the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” 29 And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food. 30 Also, to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food”; and it was so. 31 Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

According to Genesis, we were created and given our core purpose on the "sixth day." Being fruitful in every area of life begins with recognize God’s intention and design. Everything God made was good. He said is was good. God’s good and better than everyone else’s good, combined.

God’s original design for you:
1. Be fruitful: Fruitfulness
2. Multiply: Multiplication
3. Fill: Remove void, bring fullness
4. Subdue: Overcome negative factors for yourself and others
5. Dominion: Maintain control through appropriate authority, responsibility, and accountability. Care for others. Maintain good order. Lead.
6. It is God who provides “I have given you every herb...”

Fruitfulness is a function of operating according to design. You and I were created to serve God and be fruitful in the earth.

1. A pipe wrench has a very special use. It won't work well for hardly any other purpose.
2. A butter knife makes for a bad screwdriver.
3. A torx screw was designed to prevent people with flat head and philips screwdrivers to gain access.
4. A microphone makes for a bad hammer.

What is the result of using the wrong tool for the wrong job? The job may not get done. The tool is damaged and will be less useful in the future.

Having a lot of stuff and doing lot of things is not the truest measure of fruitfulness.

David knew it. 
Psalm 62:10 …And if your wealth increases, don't make it the center of your life. (NLT)

A certain rich man didn’t know it:
Luke 12:16, Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: “The ground of a certain rich man's fields yielded plentifully. 17 And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’ 18 So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.”’ 20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’ 21 “So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”

This rich man had fruitful fields, but a barren soul. He looked at all his stuff and said, “What shall I do?” He solution was not to bless others, but horde it up and build bigger barns to accommodate all this stuff.

How do you answer God when your soul, and not your stuff, is required?

What you posses in your soul is your greatest resource. What you have inside your is something that money cannot buy. I can imagine nothing worse than profiting off the pain and misfortune of others.

EPH 1:3, Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4]  just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love.

1. You have been blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.
2. You were CHOSEN before the foundation of the world. We see what God had in mind in Genesis Chapter One.
3. That we should be “holy.” Holy means “other than.” Set apart for God. Convinced that He is the one to serve.

You are blessed and fruitful because you were created that way!


How to Encourage Yourself in the Lord

Wednesday, March 06, 2013 Bryan Hudson 0 Comments

1 Samuel 30:1 Now it happened, when David and his men came to Ziklag, on the third day, that the Amalekites had invaded the South and Ziklag, attacked Ziklag and burned it with fire, 2 and had taken captive the women and those who were there, from small to great; they did not kill anyone, but carried them away and went their way. 3 So David and his men came to the city, and there it was, burned with fire; and their wives, their sons, and their daughters had been taken captive. 4 Then David and the people who were with him lifted up their voices and wept, until they had no more power to weep. 5 And David’s two wives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the widow of Nabal the Carmelite, had been taken captive. 6 Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God. 7 Then David said to Abiathar the priest, Ahimelech’s son, “Please bring the ephod here to me.” And Abiathar brought the ephod to David. 8 So David inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I pursue this troop? Shall I overtake them?” And He answered him, “Pursue, for you shall surely overtake them and without fail recover all.”

Being fruitful in every area of life depends greatly on you. While it is God who empowers us, we must be in position to receive from Him and take correct action. Your level of encouragement is critical to your success and fruitfulness. David and his men's encouragement level came under direct attack after the Amalekites attacked Ziklag, burned the village and took their families away. 

Below are my notes from the message, "Encourage Yourself in the Lord." (Available on Firm Foundation Podcast)

A. The attack upon Ziklag by the Amalekites was an attack upon the encouragement of David and his people

1. The Amalekites and Amorites were sometimes used interchangeably because they were all essentially sworn enemies of Israel and continue to be an archetype of satanic attack and hindrance to progress and stability.

2.  The Amalekite "spirit" continues to seek to burn down your Ziklag, bring confusion in your camp, confusion to your mind, and to discourage you.

B. What to do when crisis happens: The word crisis means, "danger and opportunity." Every crisis presents the danger of things becoming worse, or the opportunity of turning things around for the better. 

  1. Know the promises of God you are standing on (specific Scriptures)
  2. Know that the enemy wants to shipwreck your faith and make you compromise your Christian witness
  3. Make no excuse for a lack of faith, but ask the Lord to “Increase my faith”
  4. Encourage yourself in the Lord
  5. Don’t overreact by burning bridges, severing relationships, rendering judgment “before the time.” (1 Corinthians 4:5)
  6. Don’t make any critical decisions, before committing time to seek the Lord. Crisis will impair judgment and hinder your faith until you leave “crisis mode.”
C. In his moment of greatest distress, David decided to encourage himself in the Lord!

  1. This was necessary BEFORE asking for the "ephod" to seek God for direction. Regardless of how he felt, David did not take actions before restoring encouragement and hearing from God.
  2. You cannot hear from God and do the right thing if you are in distress and discouraged.
  3. God said is essence, “Go, get your stuff and people back!” In other words, “Send the devil a message that you will not get away with this attack.”
  4. When a thief is caught, he must restore seven-fold. Pro. 6:30
  5. If satan thinks he is going to get away with his attacks upon us, he has another think coming.
D. Through renewed encouragement from God, David and the willing men rose up and attacked the Amalekites for some 24 hours.
  1. Note that 200 of the men were too weary to go up. They stayed at Besor and were refreshed. The other 400 were ready to go up – and they went in a big way!
  2. When you get encouraged, you need to give the devil “hell”.
  3. David recovered ALL! The Words says that “nothing was lacking...”
  4. As James said, “Count it all joy..." knowing that trials of faith bring great fruit afterwards. (James 1)
Some keys to encouragement that bring fruitfulness:
  1. One of the things you can always control is your perspective. No matter what happens, YOU control what the meaning is, and what to do with the meaning you give to the circumstance.
  2. Stay focused on your race within. Joseph did this event when betrayed his brothers and falsely accused by Potiphar's wife.
  3. Learn the lesson. You will experience the same challenges/problems over and over again until you learn your lesson.
  4. Learn to become comfortable with being uncomfortable.
  5. Creativity is your unlimited capital. God can give you new and fresh insight. We don’t have many visionaries today. We have people taking credit for other peoples work. We have people riding the coattails of others.
  6. Remember that abundance is everywhere. You must choose to see it and believe it in order to fully experience it.
  7. There is no progress without action.  Once you get started every step afterwards gets easier and easier.  Until eventually, what had once been invisible, starts to become visible, and what once felt unattainable, starts to become a reality.
  8. Persistence always wins.  As Winston Churchill once said, “Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.”  It may take more than one swing to compose an efficient hit, so make sure not to give up on strike #1.  And remember, a river cuts through rocks not because of its power at a given moment, but because of its persistence over time.
  9. Focus is everything.  When you are too busy looking behind and around you, people are passing you.  If you never focus clearly on something, you will never be 100% efficient at anything.  
  10. Positivity fuels productivity.  Thoughts are like the steering wheel that moves our life in the right direction.  Success comes from positive energy.  You can choose to get caught up in the negativity surrounding you, or you can decide to do something positive about your situation.  You always have a choice.  Remember, happiness is an element of success, and the happiest people don’t necessarily have the best of everything, they use positive energy to make the best of what they have.
  11. Helping others is a big part of being successful.  Successful people constantly come up with new ideas, new projects, and new and innovative ways of helping others.  This means that your aims and objectives just benefit you, but also help benefit others as well.  Bottom line:  Your long-term success is directly tied to how well you serve your community. 
  12. Success is a journey of countless baby steps.  It’s a constant process of growth.  If you want to be successful, you must continue to hold yourself to a higher standard than anyone else, and strive to improve. 

 (Some of above points from:


The Cure for "Flakiness"

Saturday, March 02, 2013 Bryan Hudson 0 Comments

In these last days when compromise, complaining, and poor character dominate our society, we are called to follow Paul's admonition in Philippians 2:14-15, "Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast the word of life."

Wisdom speaks to the importance of developing reverence for God, respect for authority, and recognizing the impact of associations. "My son, fear the Lord and the king; Do not associate with those given to change." (Prov. 24:21)

With all that we have in Christ, there is no excuse for being "flaky," which is defined in colloquial terms as someone who is "unreliable, characterized by not following through on agreed plans." We should say what we mean. Mean what we say. Give account for our actions. Reveal hidden agendas. Look people in the eye and speak truthfully.

We must clothe ourselves with the "new man" which is the cure for compromise, complaining, poor character, and "flakiness."

Ephesians 4:24 "…put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness. 25 Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,”[a] for we are members of one another. 26 “Be angry, and do not sin”:  do not let the sun go down on your wrath…30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.

It's time to step up and be doers of the Word, not just hearers and church hopping attenders!