Deeper Truths for Hungry Hearts

April  2012 • Volume X Number 08

“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 3:18)

Thoughts for Consideration

Greetings again my Brethren. This month we will look at the second to last emotion of God, His revenge.  Now many Christians would say God is love (and He is) and He has no vengeance in His heart, but these are the same Christians who say since God is full of love He will not pour out His wrath and judgement on men and women who do not repent of their waywardness in the face of such a wondrous humble sacrifice of Jesus on the cross.  Make no mistake my friend God is full of love and a part of that overwhelming love is God’s wrath, judgement, and yes His vengeance or revenge.  To dispute this truth would to dispute the word of God and openly confess in word and deed they know not God. Paul asks this question and then answers his question, “Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? 21For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.”  (1 Corinthians 1:20-21) To be honest with ourselves and God we must teach the whole counsel of God and not just the emotions we agree with.

In Deuteronomy we find one of the first references to God’s vengeance is:  “To me belongeth vengeance, and recompence; their foot shall slide in due time: for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste.”  (Deuteronomy 32:35) Did you get that, “To me belongeth vengeance.”  Now you cannot see it with the verse italicized here, but the world “belongeth” was added during translation, so the verse originally read “To me vengeance and recompence.” Not a big shift in thought, but the original (Greek) text lines up the relationship order with God holding the club and we in desperate need of reconciliation back to God through repentance. It was nothing we did to incur God’s vengeance other than to be born into this world. You see we all are sinners and we all need to be reconciled back to God through only the work of Christ on the cross.  We cannot be good enough or work our way to heaven, only confess we are sinners and repent (about face or turn from) our evil ways. In Nahum we see this truth also, “God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies.3The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.”(Nahum 1:2-3) Again, “God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the; LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies.3The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.”(Nahum 1:2-3) Again, “God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies.”  Did you know we are enemies of God, His adversary and God reserveth “wrath” (wrath added in translation) for His enemies.  Now read without the word “wrath;” “the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth for his enemies.” I do not know about you my friend, but I want nothing to do with any of God’s wrath, fury, and vengeance.  Something from the New Testament we read, “If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. 19Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: (Strong’s #3709; anger, wrath, indignation, thus it is okay to get angry, but do not act on your anger) for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. 20Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. 21Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.”  (Romans 12:18-20) Brethren God is the final judge He is the one who settles all scores and repays all bad and all back debts.  When we get over into revenge we are saying God is not able to be God, He does not have the ability to take care of us and the issues in our lives ad this my friend is a great offense to God and His word.

Next month we will look at the last emotion of God His pity an emotion I am glad God has, it is so nice to know God pities us as a father pities his son.


All of God’s Love

One of the most memorized and beloved verses in the Scriptures is found in the Book of John. “For God so loved (agape, Strong’s #25 to welcome, to entertain, to be fond of, to love dearly)  the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)  Now I really like the Book of John, but did you know the word “prayer” does not appear in any Book (KJV) in the Bible that John wrote.  Not in the Gospel of John, not in any of his three epistles, or in the Book of Revelation, but the attitude and heart of “prayer” seems to be flowing out from John’s words.  The Bible is a spiritual Book and must be understood by the Spirit of God or we will miss its meanings and misrepresent the words just like with the word “prayer” not being in the five books of the Bible that John wrote.  God’s word, the Bible, is truth and has many edges of understanding that is progressive. Now please remember there are also God’s words, the individual words God speaks to our spirit so that we will know His will in a given situation or circumstance.  Now God can speak to us in many ways:  through nature, His word, the Bible, or to our spirit if our spirit is tuned to the Holy Spirit.  For example Paul in Romans shares, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”  (Romans 10:17) Many Christians say faith comes by hearing the Bible preached or riding around in a car listening to the Bible on tape.  We know this cannot be true, millions of people attend churches around the world and  hear the Bible and yet have no faith. This was very popular when I was growing up, but that is not what the Bible says. The Bible says “faith comes by hearing” and “hearing by the word of God.”  In other words we get faith when we hear God speak to us through His words.  The Greek version of this verse does a better job explaining this truth, “So then faith cometh by hearing, a word from God.” (Romans 10:17 (GK)) Do you see the difference?  Today if you need faith you must hear from God (faith is God’s not ours), because in the hearing is contained all of the faith you will need for the situation or circumstance you are facing.  We cannot work it up, pray it up, or stand on God’s promises to get it up, we must hear from God, “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”  (Hebrews 12:2)

Well now that I have your attention and we have a better understanding of the many facets of the workings of truth, let us take a closer look at John 3:16.  I do not know about you my friend, but this verse scares me to death. Why do we Christians believe our lives are going to be filled with flowers and candy, a real bed of roses, all of the time?  Let us read John 3:16 again, but this time let us not use the Pollyanna, sugar coated thinking that sets many Christians up for failure, “For God so loved the world, that he gave (Strong’s #1325, of one’s own accord to give one something, to his advantage) his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”  (John 3:16)   We often miss the point here that God stood by while His Son Jesus Christ was crowned with 3 ½ inch thorns, flogged, beat with a cat of nine tails (whip), despised, spit on, had His beard plucked out, and then when totally exhausted from the loss of blood and physical pain, had His only begotten (a past participle of beget; to be the father of; cause to be; produce) Son crucified.  And God loves His Son very much. God the Father gave His own Son for His (not Jesus’) own advantage. What an unbelievable love (agape) by Jesus, but who wants God to love them that much?  I am not sure if I would raise my hand here.  Paul tells us in Romans, “He (God) that spared not his own Son, but delivered him (Jesus) up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” (Romans  8:32)  God spared not His Son and we think He will do more for us?  Why do we think God wants to give us happy and pleasant (the life of Riley) things and not allow some hard, difficult, and troubling things into our lives? Is the servant better than the Master?  I think not. My friend we better wake up to the reality of truth before we wake up from our religious dream and find God is loving us like He loved His Jesus.  Make no mistake my friend hard, difficult, troubling times are coming our way God will see to it.  I believe America, because of her waywardness to God and His words (both spoken and written) is looking down both barrels of God’s judgment and punishment. I hope I am wrong (if I am I will get the stones), but I feel strong in my spirit hard, difficult, and troubling times are heading America’s way.  I am really a coward and do not want to see them come, but we can only play fast and loose for so long then God will say enough and pull up on the reins.  For all of those who look to America for financial help and support, please I would advise you all to start looking at the Lord for your help and support.  Again I hope I am wrong, but as with all things in God time will tell.

For years I had a hard time with the word “agape” (love) because what I had been taught and what I saw around me did not seem to line up with what I was reading in the Scriptures.  But one day, my teacher, Charles Haun, opened up a more complete understanding of the word that opened it up to me personally, but also allowed me to help others with it. Agape is defined as a dedication to the well-being of another.  The Greeks have three words one being agape to express what we use one word to express our love. But agape is nothing like love as we think of it something warm and fuzzy.  Agape is a marvelous force in God that moves from God towards us and then from us towards Him and then towards others.  It makes choices and then it is faithful to the choices it made (faithful, that is, to the object of the choice, or the person to be loved).  If I make a choice for Jesus through agape moving in my heart then I will be faithful to him – regardless of the situations, circumstances, or consequences.  If I were to be hauled away and delivered to the lions, I would still remain faithful to Jesus. Circumstances and situations never changes agape.  It is no wonder Jesus could go to the cross, agape was moving in His life and not just love.  If we only love our spouse (or family) when they get old and their hair and teeth fall out we will leave them, but if we agape them, if we dedicate ourselves one to the other no matter what happens in our relationship we will never leave them.  In its simplest form, agape is a decision, not an emotion.  Whether we like it or not we are saddled with certain emotions and we have to learn to deal with them.  If not they will lead us off track and out of God faster than anything else.  We must not allow our emotions to dictate the way we relate to God and people, we must let the principles of the Spirit and the word of God direct and lead us. Agape is not affected by our emotions. It is something totally apart from our natural feelings. It was no wonder Jesus could endure the cross, agape was the force and not His feelings and emotions that compelled Him to lay His life down.  Please know if we love the things if this world too much, then agape is not in us.  It is agape that holds together all of the affairs of men, especially a marriage.

A week or so ago our Pastor asked me to pray for marriages within the church, I said I would and I did, but what is needed is not more prayer, or more love, but more agape (dedication) towards each other.  If a good husband holds his wife as his objective and her well-being becomes his interest, then his every decision is based upon her needs as agape moves through him toward her. What we need is more agape working in lives today, if so we would have less divorce and unfaithfulness in marriages.
Most people can quote Romans 8:31, “If God be for us, who can be against us?” but how many Christians can quote verse Romans 8:32?  Did you known agape is the foundation of our faith?  We do not want to identify with a God that will hold us accountable for our actions.  We will quickly give our life for a God who forgives all of our sins, but how about a God that is holy and righteous and who expects His children to be the same.  Now please do not misunderstand me, I too like to be forgiven when I sin or fall short of God’s glory, but unless I learn the lesson of my failure and there is a change in my heart condition (which will always cause a change in my attitude and behavior) my failure and God’s forgiveness will do me little good. Oh yes, my sins will be forgiven and if I die I would probably go to heaven (God gets to make that call not the Pastor or friends), but I will not be of any use to God while on earth. Always wanting and having to have our sins forgiven is a selfish position in God.  We say we want all of God’s love, but we are not to keep having our sins forgiven.  Jesus died once on the cross for our sin and He Himself died once to sin. “For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.”  (Romans 6:10) It is God’s intention for us to confess our sin once and believe Jesus died for us once, then “grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.”  (2 Peter 3:18) There is no wonder there is not a desire for spiritual growth and development in the church we keep laying again our foundation of dead works, “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God.” (Hebrews 6:1) I think today one of the greatest works we should allow God to do in our hearts is faith toward God.’  I believe most Christians go to church to do all of the religious duties and traditions of men, but really and maybe secretly in their hearts have not really settled if there is a God.

They may have “walked the aisle” as a good Southern Baptist would say, but there has not been an inward change in their heart and lives. Their decision was based on an emotional response to a gifted speaker or maybe fear from the promise to be saved from hell’s eternal flames, but inwardly there was no realization of what sin has wrought in their lives, no dedication to the things of God, a momentary decision to soothe a guilty conscience, but no real commitment to God and His ways.  Apparently we do not believe some day we will stand before a holy and righteous God or we would get serious about our walk with the Lord (I can include himself here at times) and stop all of this religious denominationalism; what the Chinese would call “look see pigeon” or what I call “a Christian dog and pony show.”  My friend let us embrace all of God’s agape.  Remember for those who agape God His agape towards them is His longsuffering, mercy, and forgiveness.  But for those who only eros (covers our animal instinct and most of our strongest feelings and emotions) Him (it is also where we get the word erotic) or phileo (friendship love) Him, His agape toward them (same agape as those who agape Him) is His judgment, wrath, and punishment. The difference is our heart condition toward Him, not His towards us.  His heart is always, all of His agape towards us.

Written by David Stahl   


“Seasons of Our Lives”

Wise King Solomon said, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up. A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together, a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8).  God has a season and/or a time for each of us and if we try to stay in a certain season or time while God is trying to move us on we will miss what God is trying to work into our lives. If we insist upon our own way we will lose out. There’s a time when things are “status quo’, and a time to move onward and forward to change. Here is why we must have that relationship with the Father so we can fully trust Him and move (even if we don’t want to) forward. No one’s life in the Bible stayed the same, no one who followed the LORD that is. Changing situations makes us grow up and if we are obedient to God, we will eventually change into the image of Jesus Christ.

Before moving to Sneads Ferry last summer our dog Grimme got very sick. Dave and I both knew he wasn’t going to be moving with us to our new home. God had prepared us. So we moved and our dear ole Grimme passed on. At that time I felt that we were to be pet less for a while. Well, Karen likes dogs and wants another dog. Actually Karen wants what she had with Grimme—he was my best dog. So I looked on my favorite website (where I found our dear ole Grimme boy) and found what sounded like the perfect boxer. So Dave and I went to get her. She went back to her people in less than 3 days. The dog was great, the young couple that had her was great but I’m not supposed to have a dog right now. We are to be free to come and go. When we had Grimme we had a support system, Jeff and Connie lived in town and around the corner I had the most excellent dog whisperer friend who we could rely on to watch Grimme. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that that season of my life is past. And even though I want a dog I must refrain at this time, my poor Dave indulges me so, what he puts up with. My point in telling this is that we must go along with the seasons of our lives, the changes God brings our way. I’ve said it before that if I had my druthers (my way) all of our kids and their families would be living here in town with us. I love them all so, yet I know it’s best for them to be out of our lives at this season. We raised our kids to be on their own and to follow God and His plan and purposes for their lives. It’d be dead wrong of us to interfere with God’s plan. They know we are here to help when we can, but it’s them and Jesus now. They must walk their own path with God. While on the subject of seasons, we also must go along with the physical seasons God has put into place.  Folks I’m probably going to step on a few toes here, but here goes.  When you’re in your 50s and 60s look and act it.  We’ve had our time in our 20s and 30s now it is time to grow up.  Yes I know you don’t “feel” old, but you are.  There is nothing more pathetic than a person in their 50s or 60s trying to act and speak like they’re in their 20s, stop it. Let’s act our age.

Marry first then have children. There’s a reason why you have kids when you’re young, quite frankly I couldn’t keep up with a bunch of little kids now and sometimes I wonder how I did it at all! There’s plenty of time when your children are grown and on their own for you to have a career if you (and God) so desires. The few examples in the Bible of people having kids when they were older were the exception, not the rule.  When your kids are small hold their feet to the fire and make them responsible for their actions. And resist the urge to do everything for them the sooner they realize the world doesn’t revolve around them and owe them a living the better off they will be. Raise them the way God says to raise them not the way our society says. The main thing is to be on track with the LORD no matter what season of life we are in. Keep focused on Him and we will go on to season after season with our precious LORD and Savior.

Written by Karen Stahl



1.    In Silistra, Bulgaria Pastor(s) Niki Marsov and Emil Nedelchev.  Times are troubled in Bulgaria and need much prayer.
2.     Constanta, Romania Pastor George Ritisan at Lighthouse Church, and   Ciprian Bozdod at the Mission Bible School.   They too are expanding making more room for God and ministry to Eastern Europe, Turkey, and Asia.
3.    In Suceava, Romania Pastors Nicu and Pastor Marcel at St. Andrews Church.
4.    Pastor Joseph Mutua in Nairobi, Kenya needs your prayer and financial support.
5.    Pastor Mike Olufemi in Aveile,  Nigeria. He needs our prayers and support to be a light in great darkness.
6.    Pastor S. J. Peter, Founder of DAWN Ministries in Hyderabad and Pastor Wilson and his son Pastor Julian in Sankaraguptham, India.
7.     Pastor Metin Mintaz and the members of Uskudar Son Buyruk Kilisesi in Istanbul, Turkey.
8.      Pastor Elieti Msangi in Dar Es Salaam and Pastors Isreal Mutaitina and John Balone in Bukoba, Tanzania.
9.    Monthly financial support Vivian’s Maternity and Child Care Clinic project in Aviele, Nigeria.
10.      Pastor Tek Dahl at Gethsemane, Church (his church) and their radio station “Good News 105.1 FM” in Kathmandu, Nepal.
11.    Bishop John, Samuel Kamanzi (from the Congo), and, Emmanuel Ndolimana in Ruhengeli, Rwanda.


I am still available to share what God has given me at churches and/or home groups.  If God moves on your heart to  support BHG or other ministries we  personally know we would be honored to serve as a go between. Remember, if we want a blessing from God the spiritual principle is we must bless others.  Remember, God is to you what you are to God


David and Karen Stahl
232 Everett Drive
Sneads Ferry, NC 28460

Home: (910) 741-0489
Mobile: (910) 382-9287
FAX: (910) 741-0489

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Beholding His Glory Website

Beholding His Glory Blog

Our latest book, “Thoughts for Consideration” has been published by AuthorHouse, where you can also purchase it online. You can also purchase two of our other books “Adventures with God” and “God Still Performs Miracles: A Book of Personal Encouragement.”

Please take a minute and take a look, they all make for a great encouraging gift, giving hope and sharing God’s love through a deeper teaching that someone can enjoy again and again. All of our books can be purchased at all book stores like Barnes and Nobles, Borders, Book-A-Million, and etc., any Christian Book Store that orders, and all book ordering on-line companies like Or if you are like me from the old school just contact us, we will let you know the price, and then we will mail it out to your home address. Postage and handling is on a case by case basis.

We are projecting to use the royalties for: our maternity clinic in Aveile, Nigeria, radio station in Katmandu, Nepal, TB clinics in Ethiopia, and Lord willing the Bible Schools in Kenya, Rwanda, and the Congo, and to help publish more books. We have five more books at different stages of production. If you know someone you think would enjoy receiving this newsletter or if you receive this newsletter and do not wish to please let me know. Contributions to this ministry is always appreciated and needed the more time continues. Please feel free to contact us with the above information. The cost is great, but the cost for not supporting to others is even greater. And remember, all donations are tax deductible.