"We see, in many a land, the proudest dynasties and tyrannies still crushing, with their mountain weight, every free motion of the Consciences and hearts of men. We see, on the other hand, the truest heroism for the right and the greatest devotion to the Truth in hearts that God has touched. We have a work to do, as great as our forefathers and, perhaps, far greater. The enemies of Truth are more numerous and subtle than ever and the needs of the Church are greater than at any preceding time. If we are not debtors to the present, then men were never debtors to their age and their time. Brethren, we are debtors to the hour in which we live. Oh, that we might stamp it with Truth and that God might help us to impress upon its wings some proof that it has not flown by neglected and unheeded." -- C.H. Spurgeon . . . "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:31, 32 . . . . .



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Tuesday, January 4, 2022


Note from James
: We had an awesome and entirely appropriate message this last Sunday (01/02) that dealt with why we exist as a church. What is the purpose, what is the mission, what is the declaration of the church of Jesus Christ in today’s growing iniquity?
Where are we going, and do we need to retrace our steps and get on the path of righteousness once again?

As I heard this sermon, I was making mental notes on various TTUF articles that would be suitable accompaniments to it, and so I asked pastor Sonny if I could publish this teaching and insert links to my articles and he was all for it! You’ll see certain words and phrases hyper-linked throughout this article which will lead you to those articles.

I pray that this teaching is as much a blessing to you as it was to all of us at SHINE BRIGHT church, here in Tucson, AZ.
So, without further ado, on to the message!

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Friday, December 31, 2021

NUMBERS – From SINAI To The PROMISED LAND: Introduction and Chapters 1 & 2

Contributing commentaries by pastors Sonny Islas, Albert Lopez and James Fire

NUMBERS 1 & 2: “GOD Paints By Numbers” – by James Fire, Facebook video.

INTRODUCTION: We are now in the fourth book of the TORAH, as written by Moses, as inspired by the Holy Spirit.
In GENESIS we saw the beginning of all things, including the beginning of a relationship between ‘the father of the faithful’, Abraham and His GOD, the LORD GOD. This man and Sarah his wife grew into a family, and by the end of GENESIS, they grew into a nation.

In EXODUS that nation was redeemed from bondage in Egypt and was brought to Mount Sinai where the LORD GOD was revealed to them, as well as His Holy Law, the testimony of GOD confirmed regarding His plan for Israel and the plans for the Tabernacle that was then built.
In LEVITICUS we see that the nation that was redeemed, has been sanctified, and made a holy and special people to the LORD through priestly ministration and sacrifices. As a nation, as a priesthood Israel was consecrated unto the LORD to fulfill His glorious purposes: to be a beacon of truth and light to a world that didn’t know GOD (not much beyond the testimony of creation).

Now we are in the book of NUMBERS, and it’s called that because of the first four chapters, where Moses is busy about making a census of the twelve tribes of Israel.

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CROSSING The T’s STUDY in 1 TIMOTHY – Biblical Precepts and Principles for Pastoral ministry: CHAPTER TWO

: Paul wrote a very affectionate, endearing, heart-felt epistle to the church at Philippi and we see very much the same heart here from Paul to his beloved son in the faith, Timothy.

I’ve had and have some spiritual sons in the faith myself; though they are not my blood, but rather by the blood of Jesus in redemption, as am I, this forms a bond that quite often supersedes familial bonds. And will outlast them.
The instructions we see here are not just from an apostle to a pastor, but a mentor to a disciple, and a father to a son: we see these relational views throughout this letter (as well as the second letter to Timothy) and evidences the true godly love that should be the trademark of all believers in Christ (JOHN 13:34-35).

So let’s continue into chapter two!
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Monday, December 27, 2021


Contributing commentaries by pastors Sonny Islas, Albert Lopez and James Fire

Complete Study of Leviticus by pastor Chuck Smith 

LEVITICUS 27: “ ” – by James Fire, Facebook video not available.

INTRODUCTION: “The last verse of the foregoing chapter seemed to close up the statute book; yet this chapter is added as an appendix. Having given laws concerning instituted services, here he directs concerning vows and voluntary services, the freewill offerings of their mouth. Perhaps some devout serious people among them might be so affected with what Moses had delivered to them in the foregoing chapter as in a pang of zeal to consecrate themselves, or their children, or estates to him: this, because honestly meant, God would accept; but, because men are apt to repent of such vows, he leaves room for the redemption of what had been so consecrated, at a certain rate.” ~ Matthew Henry

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Wednesday, December 22, 2021


Contributing commentaries by pastors Sonny Islas, Albert Lopez and James Fire

Complete Study of Leviticus by pastor Chuck Smith 

LEVITICUS 26: “The Way of Blessing and of Cursing” – by James Fire, Facebook video available here.

INTRODUCTION: GOD desires to bless people because He is a kind, gracious, generous LORD with a tender heart and limitless resources. Think of a billionaire Grampa who has lots of grand babies. That pales compared to GOD! Throughout the Old Testament, GOD held out His hand, graciously inviting His people to partake of His goodness and provisions, and all they had to do was obey Him. And therein lies the problem. They didn’t, so He couldn’t.

It came down to a matter of heart: the human heart is desperately wicked (JER 17:9), and even the Old Testament saints that were approved by GOD and seen as upright in heart, still had to offer up sacrifices for their sins. Someone had to pay the price for sin! And it was either GOD’s people or the animals they sacrificed!

The sin nature has to be dealt with! GOD would have to instill in people a new nature after His own godliness and that’s what Ezekiel prophesied in EZEK 36:26. It’s what our LORD spoke about in JOHN 3:3-5. A new nature, a spiritual rebirth. And even then, we New Testament saints have this wrestling match going on inside of us, the Spirit against our sinful flesh (GAL 5:17). We rejoice in knowing that one day, our sin nature will be extracted from out of our very being, and we will be completely holy without even the possibility of being corrupted by sin, or even tempted to sin.

Until that day, it’s a constant visitation to the cross, where we have to crucify flesh, die to self, and let Christ Who lives IN us, to live THROUGH us.

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Thursday, December 16, 2021


~ by James Fire

The one thing that I love the most about the Christmas season are the traditional Christmas carols – and by these, I am NOT referring to Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer or Frosty the Snowman or O Christmas tree.

I’m referring to those blessed ballads that speak of the new born King, the Messiah of Israel, the Savior of the world. He most likely wasn’t born on December the 25th – that was known throughout the ancient world as Saturnalia, a pagan festival of debauchery where Romans sated carnal lusts. He was in all probability born in the Spring or the Autumn season (and there are good arguments for both).

The idea of Christmas trees, mistletoe, holly, rituals and games as being non-Christian along with other pagan accoutrements and whether Christians should avoid any and all such associations would be the subject for another time.

Whenever it was that the birth of Christ took place, the blessed reality is that He was in fact born into this world: for all eternity, long before the creation of time, space and matter/energy, He sat at the right hand of the Father, and it was understood by the Three Members of the Godhead that man would fall from his right standing and would incur the judgment and subsequent wrath of GOD.

Unless GOD intervened, the entire race would be doomed.
It was agreed upon since before the foundation of the Earth that the Son would take up the mission of Atonement (REV 13:8), and it came to pass that He stood up from the right hand of the Father, He took a single step in the eternal halls of heaven and stepped out of eternity and into our time domain – and infused His Spirit with the procreative egg of a lowly peasant girl named Mary, of the house of David, from the tribe of Judah: the kingly line!

The rest is history as recorded in Holy Writ. And in the various Christmas Carols that everyone knows. It’s not surprising that these are rife with biblical doctrine as so many of them were penned by pastors and godly poets. Among them I have my favorites – and as you rightly surmise, O Holy Night is among them.
Would you accompany me for a while as I muse upon these lyrics and expound upon their Scriptural relevance?

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