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Rules for Living a Radical Spiritual Life

1. An Unswerving Belief that Jesus is the Son of God.

Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in Me? What I am telling you I do not say on My own authority and of My own accord; but the Father Who lives continually in Me does the ([a]His) works (His own miracles, deeds of power). 11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me; or else believe Me for the sake of the [very] works themselves. [If you cannot trust Me, at least let these works that I do in My Father’s name convince you.] 12 I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, if anyone steadfastly believes in Me, he will himself be able to do the things that I do; and he will do even greater things than these, because I go to the Father, John 14:10-12.

Whenever Christians give the devil a foothold, Ephesians 4:26-28, spiritual faith can be stolen as revealed in the Parable of the Sower, Matthew 13:19-23. Jesus explains that belief is preserved by planting yourself in the right environment. Psalm 1:1-3 compares this to water that gives life or as the apostle Paul states in Romans 10:17, faith comes from hearing, reflecting upon and studying the Word of God, the Bible.

2. Seizing the Moment to Provide for the Needy with the Expectation God Will Provide.

Now the day began to decline, and the Twelve came and said to Him, Dismiss the crowds and send them away, so that they may go to the neighboring hamlets and villages and the surrounding country and find lodging and get a [b]supply of provisions, for we are here in an uninhabited (barren, solitary) place. 13 But He said to them, You [yourselves] give them [food] to eat. They said, We have no more than five loaves and two fish—unless we are to go and buy food for all this crowd, 14 For there were about 5,000 men. And [Jesus] said to His disciples, Have them [sit down] reclining in table groups (companies) of about fifty each. 15 And they did so, and made them all recline. 16 And taking the five loaves and the two fish, He looked up to heaven and [praising God] gave thanks and asked Him to bless them [to their use]. Then He broke them and gave them to the disciples to place before the multitude. 17 And all the people ate and were satisfied. And they gathered up what remained over—twelve [[c]small hand] baskets of broken pieces, Luke 9:12-17.

Time is one of the biggest obstacles to living a radical spiritual life. Time is used like a crutch, a common excuse to fall back on when you don’t feel like doing something spiritually. Jesus’ disciples fell into this trap in the passage above, but Jesus was there to direct them in the direction of the Holy Spirit. Willing servants seize each moment that the Lord provides with the expectation God will provide everything that you need, 2 Peter 1:3-4.

3.Following the Example and Model for Overcoming Temptation, 1 Corinthians 10:13.

Inasmuch then as we have a great High Priest Who has [already] ascended and passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession [of faith in Him]. 15 For we do not have a High Priest Who is unable to understand and sympathize and have a shared feeling with our weaknesses and infirmities and liability to the assaults of temptation, but One Who has been tempted in every respect as we are, yet without sinning. 16 Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it], Hebrews 4:14-16.

The author of Hebrews reveals that Christians have someone who can sympathize with our weaknesses. If you study the Passion Week beginning in John 12, Jesus leans on His heavenly father in the Garden of Gethsemane. Mark 1:35-36 provides Jesus’ spiritual routine to start every day. Whenever Christians begin to follow the example and model set by Jesus to look for the way out of temptation, they are keeping in step with the Holy Spirit, Galatians 5:25.

4.Follow the Way of Righteousness, Matthew 6:33.

Who redeems your life from the pit and corruption, Who beautifies, dignifies, and crowns you with loving-kindness and tender mercy; Who satisfies your mouth [your necessity and desire at your personal age and situation] with good so that your youth, renewed, is like the eagle’s [strong, overcoming, soaring]! The Lord executes righteousness and justice [not for me only, but] for all who are oppressed. He made known His ways [of righteousness and justice] to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel, Psalm 103:7.

The beginning of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount points to proper attitudes and motives that radical spiritual leaders adopt. The beatitudes set the tone for this famous speech which is reinforced in Matthew 6:33. As belief is solidified, and minds are convinced that God will provide, keeping in step with the Holy Spirit ushers in a radical spiritual life. The final step is merely your complete focus on hungering and thirsting for righteousness by discovering God’s will for your life, Romans 12:1-2.

by Jay Mankus


God’s Plan to Alter Pangea

There isn’t much that biblical and secular historians agree upon. However, each parties believe that the earth was originally one continent, Pangea, Genesis 1:9-12. Furthermore, Christian and secular scientists support Genesis 2:4-5, acknowledgment of a worldwide aquifer system beneath the earth’s surface. Finally, while the amount of water that fell across the globe during a flood greatly varies, both believe that a great rainstorm did occur at some point on earth.

And God looked upon the world and saw how degenerate, debased, and vicious it was, for all humanity had corrupted their way upon the earth and lost their true direction. 13 God said to Noah, I intend to make an end of all flesh, for through men the land is filled with violence; and behold, I will [a]destroy them and the land, Genesis 6:12-13.

God’s plan to alter Pangea, the earth’s lone land mass, is made known following His disappointment with the choice’s human beings made. Following any rainstorm, there is usually debris, erosion and some sort of damage done to the earth. After experiencing forty straight days of a heavy downpour, something had to be done to Pangea to allow this water to recede. According to Moses in the passage below, there was an eruption beneath the earth’s surface which set in motion tectonic plates.

In the year 600 of Noah’s life, in the seventeenth day of the second month, that same day all the fountains of the great deep were broken up and burst forth, and the windows and floodgates of the heavens were opened. 12 And it rained upon the earth forty days and forty nights, Genesis 7:11-12.

If this bursting forth was the eruption of the Super Volcano inside of Yellowstone National Park for the first time, this would have created a pyroclastic cloud of ash, dust and rocks which would have blocked the sun’s rays for weeks or months. Subsequently, Pangea experienced its first rainstorm followed by the earth’s first ice age. Since archeologists have recently discovered traces of palm trees in artic regions, as active tectonic plates divided Pangea into 7 continents slowly over time, this is a sign of God’s plan to alter Pangea to provide new areas on earth for the flood waters to recede. This is supported by the Open Canopy theory, Pangea’s first unique atmosphere which has now been replaced by the current one which now exists on earth.

by Jay Mankus

S.A.N.S. Episode 291: God Who Moves the Mountains

I recently moved from one of the flattest states in the country, Delaware, to the Midlands of western South Carolina. My commute to work is up and down steep hills, over and over again for an hour. When I first heard the lyrics of today’s song, God Who Moves the Mountains, I’m reminded of why many prayers lifted up by Christians that go unanswered. Mountains serve as a mental block, causing doubt to replace faith as described by Jesus in the passage below.

And Jesus answered them, Truly I say to you, if you have faith (a [n]firm relying trust) and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, Be taken up and cast into the sea, it will be done. 22 And whatever you ask for in prayer, having faith and [really] believing, you will receive, Matthew 21:21-22.

Despite the unknown of the future, Jesus taught his disciples to trust in the One who can move mountains. This in the inspiration behind Corey Voss’ song God Who Moves the Mountains. Jesus presents twelve men with the ideal scenario: the could be/should be result for any prayer spoken as long as you believe in the God who moves mountains. As you listen to the lyrics, may you be inspired to intensify your prayer life with a faith that moves mountains.

by Jay Mankus

My Helper and Keeper

After taking my last graduate level teaching class, I made some radical changes in my teaching style. My Classroom Management course taught me to seek out a responsible individual in each of my classes. This person served as the heartbeat and pulse of their peers. The purpose of this leadership position was to help and keep me aware of any learning difficulties within each unit. These unclear areas were then addressed prior to each unit test. While this system wasn’t perfect, it did help and keep me on track.

My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth, Psalm 121:2.

The passage above was written during a climb or walk to the summit of a mountain in Jerusalem. This Psalmist remains nameless but was inspired to sing and write during this special stroll. One of the best ways to clear my mind in high school was to take a late-night jog while listening to my Walkman cassette player. One of my favorite music mixes was the soundtrack from Rocky IV. As each song began, adrenaline would cause me to run faster and faster.

 The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand [the side not carrying a shield], Psalm 121:5.

According to the Psalmist, God gives you something greater than adrenaline. While specific details are left up to your own interpretation, the Psalmist credits God for helping each day and keeping him near. Moses speaks about this in Deuteronomy 28:1-3. Moses believes God’s presence as a helper and keeper is a form of blessings for being obedient to the Lord. Meanwhile, the Psalmist compares God to a spiritual warrior who shields the unarmed from danger. May you begin to see God as a helper and keeper.

by Jay Mankus

S.A.N.S. Episode 266: Just Like God

Evvie McKinney was recently recognized by K-Love Radio as one of 7 top emerging artists in 2022. One of Evvie’s songs that struck a chord with my soul is Just Like God. While listening to her lyrics, I was reminded of how God provides daily bread and meets my weekly needs. Unfortunately, I don’t time enough time to thank God for all the blessings in life that He has bestowed upon me.

Then Abraham looked up and glanced around, and behold, behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by his horns. And Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up for a burnt offering and an ascending sacrifice instead of his son! 14 So Abraham called the name of that place The Lord Will Provide. And it is said to this day, On the mount of the Lord it will be provided, Genesis 22:13-14.

Abraham came to see God as Jehovah Jireh in the passage above. Some Bible scholars have suggested that Abraham believed that God would somehow resurrect his son Isacc if he went through with God’s call to sacrifice his son. Instead, God provided a ram caught in a thicket to spare Isaac’s life. Therefore, the next time the Lord provides something in your life, remember Evvie’s song Just Like God.

by Jay Mankus


As Cancel Culture and the Woke Movement alter and erode the English language, one word is rarely mentioned or used today. Indignation occurs 87 times in the Bible with 12 different translations based upon the biblical context. You may hear someone say “indignant,” but what this individual is trying to express is anger or annoyance provoked by what is perceived as unfair treatment.

 If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27 but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God, Hebrews 10:26-27.

Anyone who fails to fully receive God’s free gift as their own as detailed by the apostle Paul in Romans 6:23 and Romans 10:9-11 disappoints the Creator of the universe. Romans 1:18-20 points to God’s invisible nature and attributes that are on display daily. God doesn’t force anyone to believe. Rather Revelation 3:20-21 describes the concept of freewill which ultimately determines your eternal destination.

Then I heard a mighty voice from the temple sanctuary saying to the seven angels, Go and empty out on the earth the seven bowls of God’s wrath and indignation, Revelation 16:1.

According to one of Jesus’ disciples, in the last days on earth, God’s wrath and indignation will be poured out in the form of seven calamities. John mentions God’s wrath and indignation together twice in one statement, a byproduct of His own frustration. John 3:16-17 reveals the goal of Jesus, God’s one and only son. God gives everyone a lifetime to believe, settling for your own death bed if necessary. If you want to avoid God’s indignation, make your decision today, 1 John 5:12-13.

by Jay Mankus

S.A.N.S. Episode 137: Somewhere Somehow

Whenever I hear today’s song, I think of my decision to leave youth ministry. After burning myself out in less than a year, the song Somewhere Somehow was released as a duet between Michael W. Smith and Amy Grant. Subsequently, as this song plays I think of all the special friendships and people that I met while serving the Lord in Columbus, Indiana. Just as the lyrics express, I hope for a reunion in the future.

Fear not, for I am with you; I will bring your offspring from the east [where they are dispersed] and gather you from the west, Isaiah 43:5.

If this reunion doesn’t occur on earth, there is always heaven to look forward to. Whenever two famous artists unite for a special project or song, I get excited and emotional all at once. Nonetheless, Somewhere Somehow serves as a remainder that God is in control, not you. Therefore, as you listen to the lyrics of this special song, may the Holy Spirit help you believe that anything is possible with God.

by Jay Mankus

The Roman Rumor

Fake News isn’t something that former President Donald Trump invented. Rather, there have always been rumors that have evolved over time like children playing the telephone game. Each listener passes on this information with a new twist that deviates from the original message. The plot to cover up Jesus’ resurrection began with a Roman rumor that continues today by revisionist historians.

While they were on their way, behold, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had occurred. 12 And when they [the chief priests] had gathered with the elders and had consulted together, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers, Matthew 28:11-12.

The apostle Paul writes about a time when people will reach a point where they will believe what their itching ears want to hear, 1 Timothy 4:1-2. This passage reminds me of a group of teenage girls sitting at lunch, gossiping about the latest rumor in school. Unfortunately, gossip can become like a drug to some, getting cared away by words like “did you hear about what so and so did?”

And said, Tell people, His disciples came at night and stole Him away while we were sleeping. 14 And if the governor hears of it, we will appease him and make you safe and free from trouble and care. 15 So they took the money and did as they were instructed; and this story has been current among the Jews to the present day, Matthew 28:13-15.

While many Christians around world will gather together to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection this Easter Sunday, the Roman rumor spread 2,000 years ago is still passed on today. As a former Bible teacher, I was forced to address this lie with facts and biblical truths. Perhaps the same demons and deceiving spirits that Paul wrote about still exist today. Whatever the reason for rumors, may resurrection Sunday inspire you to confront the father of lies with the light of truth found in the Bible.

by Jay Mankus

The Everlasting Agreement

There are various forms of agreements that you will make over the course of your life. This may be a handshake between friends, a business deal, a pledge you make to a local church or charity or a mutual consensus. Unfortunately, some of these agreements are temporary, contain escape clauses or are broken by someone who feels like they got the short end of the stick.

Now may the God of peace [Who is the Author and the Giver of peace], Who brought again from among the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, by the blood [that sealed, ratified] the everlasting agreement (covenant, testament), Hebrews 13:20.

The phrase “all good things must come to an end” comes from a medieval poet. The origin of this expression was first written by Geoffry Chaucer in Canterbury Tales. While this is true in the context of life and death, the Bible speaks of an everlasting agreement. The apostle Paul uses the analogy of receiving a gift in Romans 6:23. However, the key is accepting this free gift as your own by taking ownership of it.

And this is that testimony (that evidence): God gave us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who possesses the Son has that life; he who does not possess the Son of God does not have that life. 13 I write this to you who believe in (adhere to, trust in, and rely on) the name of the Son of God [in [c]the peculiar services and blessings conferred by Him on men], so that you may know [with settled and absolute knowledge] that you [already] have life, [d]yes, eternal life, 1 John 5:11-13.

First century Christians referred to this everlasting agreement as the gift of eternal life, John 3:16-17. In the passage above, one of Jesus’ disciples believed that you could know for sure about your eternal destiny. There was no hopefully or maybe, but an absolute guarantee based upon your belief in the Lord Jesus Christ, Romans 10:9-11. As 2022 begins this week, make sure you secure this everlasting agreement.

by Jay Mankus

Seize, Hold Fast to and Retain Hope

Famous poet Robert Frost published the poem Carpe Diem in 1938. Carpe diem is a Latin aphorism taken from book 1 of the Roman poet Horace’s work Odes. When translated into English, Carpe Diem refers to “seize the day”. To seize involves to make the most of this present time and give little thought to the future. This is the sense of urgency the author of Hebrews is attempting to communicate.

So let us seize and hold fast and retain without wavering the [c]hope we cherish and confess and our acknowledgement of it, for He Who promised is reliable (sure) and faithful to His word, Hebrews 10:23.

Holding fast means to tightly secure something that is deemed important and valuable. This process focuses on continuing to believe in and adhere to an idea or principle. In the passage above, hope is the glue meant to cement the faith of modern day Christians. Like a cherished teddy bear that a small child clings to each night in bed, hope is what you wrap your arms around in times of need.

Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, [a]the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses]. For by [faith—[b]trust and holy fervor born of faith] the men of old had divine testimony borne to them and obtained a good report, Hebrews 11:1-2.

In football games, defensive players attempt to force, intercept, punch and remove the ball from the individual who has it. To retain possession, running backs, receivers and quarterbacks do everything in their power to avoid turning the football over. This is the message Hebrews is trying to convey by seizing, holding fast to and retaining hope. As life continues to fly by, may faith and hope be secured despite what the forces of this world may do to try to change your mind, Ephesians 6:12.

by Jay Mankus

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