Sermon January 16, 2011: A fight between life and death
- Presenter: John Ensor
- Date: January 16, 2011
- Location: Congregación León de Judá, Boston MA
It’s a great joy, privilege to introduce to you John Ensor, a dear friend of many years. John was lead of the Lord many years ago, while he was here residing in Massachusetts to start an organization as a pastor many years, to start an organization called A Woman’s Concern, and I said just a few seconds ago, providing women with alternatives to abortion and since then the Lord has lead this organization which has had huge success in so many ways, an impact is the word really, to found other similar organizations in Miami, in Los Angeles, and now he leads a national scale effort called Heart Beat International, and he does that same work, that same powerful work at a national level. They help to provide women, particularly in the inner cities with Godly alternatives to abortion. But of course, the work that they do is so much more than just abortion. It is really a social, spiritual work that is very profound and very encompassing. And it’s a joy to have him with us this morning.
Let’s just give a warm welcome to John Ensor.
Ok, thank you. Good morning, everyone. It’s an honor and a joy to be with you today. A couple of months ago I got a call from my mother. She is 80 years old. She said, “I have pneumonia”. I told her, you must go to the hospital.” She says, “I cannot go to the hospital till I go to my Spanish class.” My mother started learning Spanish last summer. She goes to Guatemala twice a year and “I must learn their language form the heart.” So I’m ashamed and embarrassed. Because I went to Miami in 2006 and I should have learned Spanish.
So, I apologize. But praise for you. We forgive you by the way. Thank you. And there’s still time. Amen. Amen.
I want you to invite you to turn to the book of Revelation, chapter 12 and I’m going to read for you a very serious portion of Scripture. Revelation, chapter 12:
“…And a great sign appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun with the moon on her feet…”
They have it in Spanish so they can read it.
“…. And on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. Another sign appeared in heaven, behold a great red dragon with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth and the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child, he might devour it. she gave birth to a male child, one is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and his throne, and the woman fled into the wilderness where she had a place prepared by God in which she is to be nourished for 1260 days.
Now, war arose in heaven; Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon and the dragon and its angels fought back, but he was defeated and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. The great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world. He was thrown down to the earth and its angels were thrown down with him.
Then I heard a loud voice in heaven saying: “Now the salvation and power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come for the accusers of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the lamb, and by the word of their testimony for they love not their lives even unto death.
Therefore rejoice, oh heavens, and you who dwell on them, but woe to you, earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short.
And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle, so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness to a place where she is to be nourished for a time, time and half a time.
The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman to sweep her away with a flood. But the earth came to the help of the woman and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth. Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring, and those who are keeping the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus…”
That’s a very serious portion of Scripture. And you don’t have to understand all the details to get the general impression. Can you all see that it tells us that we are engaged in a great struggle? This struggle began a long time ago, before the world was created. This is a struggle going on in the heavens. It principally between God and the evil one, more precisely it’s a war between God’s plan to give life and the devil’s lust for death.
We have all experienced this life and death struggle. From time to time I am reminded of what we call the evilness or the exceeding evilness of evil. I read sometime ago about how people who sell abortions, target our teenagers with a plan to get them pregnant in order to sell them more abortions. Let me read it to you.
This lady, Carol Everett, testified how she sold abortions to teenagers. She wrote: I established myself with teens as an authority at sex. I explained to them that their parents would help them with their sexuality but I would. I separated them from their support system number one, they listened to me. Second, our doctors prescribed low dose birth control pills with a high pregnancy rate knowing well that they needed to be taken very accurately at the same time every day or pregnancy would occur.
This ensured that teenagers would be my best customers as teenagers typically are not responsible to follow rigid medication guidelines on their own. I knew their sexual activity from one to twice, to five or seven times a week once they’re introduced to contraception methods. Then I could reach my goal: 3 to 5 abortions for each teenagers between the ages of 13 and 18.
According to the book of Revelations this struggle involves the devil and God. It involves the devil devouring children and we have our teenagers being targeted to be devoured, to be ruined, compromised, hurt, and then to pour victims of evil.
When I was living in Boston and I was working with the Woman’s Concern, a woman came to our clinic; she told us that she had just come from the abortion clinic. She had been on the table, they were about to do an abortion and they said; You have twins that will another $ 350.
She was from Latin America, undocumented, did not speak English, was desperate, abandoned, poor, frightened, and when she came out somebody brought her to us. And we began to help her. We provided her an ultrasound, one baby. The devil comes to devour, to deceive, to exploit and to destroy. But God came to the rescue.
I went to Miami in 2006 because I learned that they have 37 abortion clinics in Miami. In Boston, greater Boston, we had 5 to 6. And then I began to research the location of all the 37 abortion clinics. And about 30 of them were in the black and Latino neighborhoods, devouring those neighborhoods, devouring the children of those neighborhoods.
Across America today Latino women make up 13% of the female population, but they suffer 20 % of all the abortions. African American women make up 12% of the female population; they suffer 36% of all abortions. Together they are 25% of the population, but they have 56% of all the abortions.
The Christian community is striving more in the black and Hispanic community, but the devil is devouring your children. And this is what I call the exceeding evilness of evil.
It says in Revelations that the dragon stood ready to devour the child of God, verse 4.
“… The dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth so that when she bore her child he might devour it…”
This is how he was looking forward to the birth of Jesus Christ. Attack while he’s still young. Take him out. This is quite a contrast as to how John the Baptist welcomed Jesus. You said, oh, yes, he baptized Jesus. No, that’s not what he greeted Jesus. In Luke, chapter 1:
“… Mary came to visit Elizabeth. Elizabeth was 6 months pregnant with John the Baptist and Mary was one week pregnant, but John the Baptist from the womb, welcomed the Son of God…”
And Elizabeth said, in verse 43: “…And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me, for behold when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy…”
Joy. Womb to womb worship. That is never doubt that when you are in the womb you are such as much a person as you are today. John was worshipping in the womb and out of the womb. And when we destroy our preborn children we destroy the children of God.
The devil came to devour him. John came to welcome him. This is a side we must choose. There is no middle ground. The devil uses the blunt instrument of killing all children, to capture or to destroy the one child.
Remember when Mary gave birth? Satan stirred Herod. Herod came to Bethlehem. Did he kill the one child or did he just go ahead and kill all the sons? Not just the babies two years old and younger to stop the Son of God. Satan killed lots of children.
This is not the first time he has tried this. He tried it with Moses, remember? When Moses was coming to deliver of the people of God, Satan went after Moses as a child, stirring the Pharaoh and creating a law inviting them to destroy all the baby boys. But the midwives said, we don’t care if we have permission to do this, we will not do it. and they made a law that said you must do it, but the midwives said that we will fear God, we don’t care what the law says.
If the devil wants to destroy the people of God he has many ways to do that. But one of them is to simply take you out before you’re born. Abortion is the devouring of our children unless they grow up, claim Jesus Christ, go out into the world, extend the Kingdom of God, hasting the day of his coming.
In other words the devil is trying to destroy children as a delaying action for his own judgment. As our passage says, he knows his time is short.
I just came back from China. In China the church is growing faster than ever before in any place in all of human history. Some reports say that 200.000 new believers are created every day in China. But China is the only place in the world where they have a law that says you can only have one child. And I saw a hundred pastors weeping and lamenting because they know that they and their wives and their elders and their wives and everybody in the church has aborted their own children. The devil can’t stop this generation, but he has devoured the next one and buy himself some more time.
At least God’s people, say with the midwives, we will rescue our own children, no matter how difficult, no matter whether I’m married or not, I will never shed innocent blood. I will trust God to feed my child, because God does not abandon his children. Amen.
In Revelations the devil goes out to devour the child. But the Lord comes to the rescue of the child. In verse 13:
“…He pursued the woman who was about to give birth, and just as he’s about to get her, God gives her the wings of an eagle…”
In history we know that God warned them to flee to Egypt. Satan came to devour but God came to deliver, to deliver them from the works of the devil. Satan went after her with rushing water but it says the earth opened up and swallowed the water. The devil came to devour but God comes to deliver.
And God calls us to be deliverers with him. In Proverbs, chapter 24 verse 11:
“…Rescue those who are being taken away to death, hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, we did not know this; does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it?”
Which is a way of saying don’t pretend you don’t know what’s going on. You and your children are in the cross hairs of the evil one. His major strategy is to devour children before they’re even born and we are going to rescue those who are being dragged off to death.
Psalms 82, verse 4: “…Rescue the weak and the needy and deliver them from the hand of the wicked. God threw Satan down to the earth. It says that Jesus came into the world to destroy the works of the devil, devouring children is his work. God aims to destroy it by calling his people to the rescue.
The Kingdom of God comes down as the powers of the devil are thrown down. And so God came to the woman who was selling abortions. He sent people like you into her life. She came to faith in Jesus Christ. Can God forgive someone who has sold abortions for profit? Yes. She began to testify to expose her own evil work. She became a powerful testimony. She inspired other people like you to know how they could rescue women from abortion.
Today in America there are 2300 pregnancy help ministries. None of these existed 40 years ago. They have been started by us, the Christian community. We built them, we pay for them with our own donations, we volunteer at them, we work there, we bought ultrasound machines. We brought nurses and doctors in. why? Because the devil was devouring our own children.
But God calls us to rescue, so that’s what we do. It’s nothing more than the parable of the good Samaritan. There was a man who was about to die. What does love do? Love doesn’t say, I don’t know, I didn’t do it, I don’t’ believe in that. You see, well I’m not pro choice, that’s not good enough.
Love requires that you rescue the weak and the innocent. You pick the man up, you put him on your donkey and you take him in, pay for the care. You don’t have to go to school for this. You just have to love your neighbor and you’ll figure it out as you go. Is it easy? No. it cost you a lot. We call it, cross-bearing for the child bearing.
Every time a woman calls Teresa at the center, the woman is in trouble. She needs help. Teresa and her volunteers and staff come to the rescue. How are they able to do that? Because you are helping Teresa, because you are part of a Woman’s Concern, because we rescue the weak and the innocent, and we deliver them from the hand of the wicked, whatever the cost.
The woman who could not speak English she was told she was having twins. We found out there was only one baby. We came to her rescue from being lied and exploited. But of course she needed a lot of help. And since she was from Lowell, we contacted some churches in Lowell, because neighbors should help neighbors.
Before you help her, they should help her. On the other hand, if the women in Boston who need help, who’s going to help them? I live in Atlanta. See, how this works? You need to help those in Atlanta? Not until after the people of Atlanta have helped. It’s the power of neighborly love. Love your neighbor, rescue your neighbor. Be cross bearer for the child bearers.
In Miami we started two pregnancy centers in the heart of the Cuban community of Highalia. They speak Spanish. Those Cubans they’re proud of their inheritance. We have any Cubans here? You know what I mean. The Cuban Latino churches gathered together and they opened this clinic. We opened on a Monday, on Thursday thieves broke into the clinic and stole the ultrasound machine. It’s like the devil wants to kick over the work of God. They called me up, we went down there, we were crying, we were praying, we were singing, we were rejoicing because all the devil could do was stealing our machine.
So we got a new one. We got a better one. And we were up and running again a couple of days later. And today that clinic sees about 15 women every day, women that would be going to one of the 37 abortion clinics. But God opened up the earth, swallowed up the river and call these people into the fight. And when you help a woman save her baby, the baby saves the woman. Amen. Because now the church sisters are personally involved in her life, helping her get married, helping him find a job, helping her get away from him if that’s required, and all the time pouring the Gospel of Christ into their life.
How do we conquer evil? It says right in our passage. “… And they conquered him by the blood of the lamb and by the word of their testimony…”
You say to me, pastor John, I had an abortion. I have blood on my hands. I believed the lie, I was deceived. I devoured my own child. Or, you brothers, you walked away. You made her vulnerable to abortion because you weren’t there. Or you persuaded her that you weren’t ready for marriage. Or you wanted to hide your sin, you didn’t want to be ashamed and embarrassed in the church. I know that 20% of people who have abortions every day are born again Christians. This is not some problem out there. We all have blood in our hands, even Roberto and I because we are your pastors amd we have failed to call you to rescue as we should. All of us have blood guilt.
How then can we conquer? Same way everybody else, by the blood of the lamb. Jesus shed his blood, he shed innocent blood to cleanse us from sin and shedding innocent blood. He shed his blood to wash away all our sins; the little ones, like gossip, and the big ones that we are so ashamed of we’ve kept them a secret. You conquer the evil one by claiming the blood of the lamb, and you conquer the evil one by the word of your testimony. You open you mouth and say I was once a sinner, I had an abortion, and you talked to the woman who’s about to have an abortion. Men, you open your mouth and you make a testimony. I was selfish and afraid, it was easier to pay for the abortion than to take responsibility, but I have confessed my sin to Christ and today I will help you keep your baby. And you get into the rescue by confessing the blood of the lamb and bearing witness with your own testimony. You don’t need anything else.
Those two weapons are mighty and will destroy the works of the devil. I’m asking you to become a cross bearer for the child bearer. I’m asking you to resolve, I will never have an abortion. I’m asking you to resolve, I will accept other people having an abortion.
If someone was about to jump off a bridge, would you say, I just want you to know I support your decision whatever it is? No. you would say, come with me, whatever it is that drove you to this point where you will jump, there’s another solution. And I will help you find it. You say, well, I need money. I don’t have a lot of money. You don’t have a lot of money, but God has plenty and there’s always room in this world for your child, or your friend’s child, or your daughter’s child, or your grandchild.
Let us get into the fight for life. Come alongside women and couples, here in the church, in our families, at work, wherever we are and know that God will use us to rescue these children and to be a witness of the forgiveness of God and the power of God. Amen. Amen.
Thank you, John. Thank you. I just want to share with you just a pastoral word as the pastor of this congregation. I thank you John for that wonderful stirring, passionate call. It’s a hard thing to come at 9 o’clock in the morning to get this kind of message and my heart goes out to those women who have experienced an abortion and been part of an abortion, as John was saying. And I hope you have heard our heart of compassion and not of condemnation, and our insistence that if you confess your sins before Christ, those sins are forgiven, they’re behind you completely.
So, to you who have experienced or been a part, a participant in an abortion we want you to leave here with that sense of the forgiving influence of Jesus Christ on your life. We want to invite you to pray about this situation in your life, we want to invite you also to seek counseling and help from either pastors, or from a cell group leader, or an elder of the church, or a woman or a man whom you trust about these matters so that they can pray with you.
But we must understand that many times the church, out of desire to avoid making people uncomfortable, or to avoid offending visitors or people who may come into the church and think otherwise, or to avoid offending others who think that there may be a more courteous, polite way of discussing these matters.
As our brother John was saying many times the church then becomes a co conspirator in the acts of the devil. And you know the style of our congregation; you know our commitment to honor God before men, and our commitment to undo the works of the devil as you have heard. So we prefer to make you uncomfortable rather than avoid facing our responsibility as believer.
I do hope that you understand that we are compelled by love not by hatred, not by self righteousness. As John has said, we have all sinned and we are needy of the grace of Jesus Christ. I finish with this thought. You know, as John was saying, when you read the history, for example, of Nazi Germany where 6 million Jews and perhaps more and other kinds of people, were killed systematically over a number years in concentration camps, when you analyze this historical phenomenon, you understand that a lot of it was possible because millions of people played a game of pretending that these things were not happening.
When all the holocaust came to light many people said, we didn’t know. It is perhaps possible yes that many did not know absolutely. But history shows us that no many, many hundreds of thousands, and millions of people knew that this was happening but they somehow sedated themselves into thinking and they fooled themselves psychologically into thinking no, it’s not taking place. And while people were more concerned about their comfort than about their morality and their relationship with God, the devil was busy doing exactly what Jesus said that he loves to do, which is to kill, to steal and to destroy. And we know of those individuals in Nazi Germany who said, no, I will not help this industry of death, I will stand on behalf of those people who are dying and killed. They won for themselves great honor and approval from God and today we honor them, and those who participated in that terrible, terrible time have been covered with extreme shame and dishonor.
And so we need to ask ourselves what side to we want to stand on? Do we want to stand on the side of an honest minority perhaps, who says, no, we will face the uncomfortable truth? We will confront the martyrdom of following Jesus and following his truth and standing for the weak and helpless? Or will we, like the men in the parable, say, no, I’m too busy, it’s not pretty, I’ll leave somebody else to do the dirty work?
So, please understand the motivation that leads us to face these uncomfortable truths. And I thank the Lord for John Ensor and Woman’s Concern. We bless all those people who are working in the front, making themselves unattractive many times even to believers, because they have a passion for the unborn and those who don’t have a voice to defend themselves.
So, as we leave, I’m going to ask all of us to stand for a moment and I’m going to pray for those men and women, particularly the women, who have been involved in some sort of process concerning abortion in their life. And I’m not going to ask you to raise your hand, but I’m going to ask you there where you are sitting to visualize the love of Christ and to receive the healing touch of Jesus who cleanses you of all, cleanses us of all sins, and to thank Jesus because he came to enable you and I to live a clean, free life even after we have sinned in so many ways in our lives.
I don’t have to hide any more from my sin. I can acknowledge my sin and I can rejoice that in Jesus Christ I receive full, complete pardon and forgiveness. So I declare the healing of Jesus in your heart, men or women, the grace of God over your life and we commit as a church to help those who may not have the knowledge or the resources to battle this.
John Ciso and Teresa and John, just come forward a little bit, please, we want to pray for you and want to bless you. can you please extend your hands upon them right now, let us cover them in prayers as well.
Meche, why don’t you pray just quickly there.
Father, we thank you for men and women who are prophets in your land, men and women who leave everything to defend the cause of those who can’t defend themselves. Father, we bless them. By name, Lord, we pray for John and John Ciso and Teresa, thank you for the work they do here on earth, to make a conscience for this need, for this concern, and of this identity that we, your children, have before you to collaborate to bring freedom and deliver those among us who cannot do it by themselves. We bless them, Lord.
Father, reward them in a thousand ways, renew them in their physical strength, that they may always drink from the fresh water of your word and that your fresh anointing may renew them daily.
Father, that many people, thousands, by millions may follow them as well. We thank you for allowing us to know them, to see them and to hear from them. Lord, that their word may never be silent and that many may desire to come to this position by their testimony. Father, and we pray for an anointing of multiplication for people like them, that many people may follow their example for the salvation of millions upon this earth.
Father, heal this land. Allow for this church to be a place of refuge for anybody who may be tempted to fall in this kind of sin. Father, lift us up as a church and give us that voice that may be able to shout from the roofs’ tops and bring to us the people that need to hear this message.
Thank you for what we have heard today and how our minds and spirits have been renewed for the word that has been delivered today. And we pray, God, that wherever we go from here, now on, that we may go with this message of life. Amen.
We declare the peace of the Lord and his grace upon your life.
|Sermon delivered by John Ensor January 16, 2011 at Congregación León de Judá||Oir|||||Ver (100K)|||||Ver (350K)|||||Ver (1200K)|
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