Honor The Son to Honor The Father

The telling thing about pseudo-Christian religions is their view of Jesus. The acceptance of and belief in God is easy for people. Almost every person is comfortable with thoughts about and conversations about God. But when Jesus is mentioned, you will know true believers because we have no doubt that he is the Son of God! 

Acknowledging His divinity and His oneness with the Father is at the core of real Christianity. A Christ follower will always give honor to the Father and the Son. Those who deny the deity of the Son are withholding from Him His due honor-and thus are withholding from the Father his due honor. Woe to them! 

As ministers of the gospel, we must be careful not to become satisfied when someone says they believe in, or trust in, God. We have to want to ensure that this is true. I’m not talking about pushing and challenging folks, but I’m talking about having a heart that is willing to disciple and teach them toward the truth and thus toward salvation, which is true reconciliation with the Father. 

Jesus will receive equal honor, glory and praise! This is the decision that The Father made!

I am praying that the Father will give us the boldness to speak out for Christ at all times. Teach us gentleness when we recognize a person’s unbelief in order that we may guide people to the truth. May we always proclaim the Savior and give honor to Him, thereby giving glory to the Father. Forgive us, Lord, for neglecting to take opportunities to lead people to the truth!

Living Like an Overcomer

No matter what is happening in this broken world, I am an overcomer. So many things in the last few months have happened to make my heart heavy, sad, broken — it can be difficult to muster the strength to hold on to joy and peace. But, I have chosen to hold on to joy and peace. As believers in Christ, the adversity, grief, heartache, woe and injustice that we experience is expected. We are not citizens of this earthly realm; our home is in heaven – we are foreigners here, aliens on a journey. It would stand to reason that we will experience enmity, bigotry, bias, hate. The world will not embrace us, nor its systems treat us with fairness. Sadly, many of us, who are citizens of heaven, have forgotten our place and are treating other citizens of heaven in ways that we should not — but I digress.

As we grieve the things that happen to us on this earth, we can rejoice that we are not alone nor forsaken! We have a great High Priest who is familiar with the troubles that we face. He is limitless in His mercy and grace, and He invites us to cast our cares upon Him. We are His chosen children – He loves us and wants what is best for us. You see, the world wants us to believe that all is lost, that our case is hopeless, that the battles will never end, that we are less than worthy of a peaceful life. But God has repeatedly told us in His word that this is simply not true. We will overcome!

We can hold on to joy — because our hope does not lie in the things of this world or in the systems of this world – but in He who cannot and will not fail; in He who loves truly and perfectly; in He who is our all! Much like those three Hebrew boys who were in the burning furnace, we have to believe that there is One that sees us, hears us and will deliver us in His own perfect time. We have to choose to embrace His truth – He is our peace.

Yes, it is painful; it is unfair; it is discouraging — all of it feels so wrong; but don’t lose sight of the truth that it is not contrary to what our Lord has spoken to us. He has foretold the trials would come; but more than that, he has revealed a future victory that no world system can snatch from us. The troubles of this world can touch my flesh, and they can prick my heart, but I will not allow them to swallow my heart, and He will not let them cover my soul in darkness. I am grateful that my life is filled with friendships that include people of all races, colors, religious backgrounds. I am blessed to have good friends across the color spectrum. But even if no one down here values me, I know who made me, and I know He adores me. Man can hold me in disdain, but He is exalting me as His called out one. I am an overcomer — and I intend to live like it. Make the choice to believe His truths no matter what is happening around you, so that you can experience his peace that man cannot understand. The one who dwells within you is greater than any issue that you might face. Don’t lose heart – in the end, you will win!  Yes! In the end, He will reign!

Betsey Stockton served in Hawaii, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Canada; 1822 – 1865

Born into slavery in 1798, Betsey Stockton was an African-American educator and missionary.

Betsey was a servant to Robert Stockton, president of the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University), and was formally freed in 1817. She remained in the service of the family as paid household help and was able to take advantage of their extensive library and benefit from their willingness to teach her in their home.

Betsey was commissioned by the American Board of Foreign Missions as a Missionary and became the first single American woman sent overseas. Her contract stated that she was sent “neither as an equal nor as a servant, but a humble Christian friend.” Betsey traveled in company with 13 white missionaries on board a ship rounding the southern tip of South America. The missionaries were on their way to the Sandwich Islands (present-day Hawaii). Upon arrival, the missionaries settled in Lahaina, Maui, where Betsey was the teacher of the first mission school at Lahainaluna School for commoners, learning the Hawaiian language while working on the Islands the first woman to do so. She trained native Hawaiian Teachers who eventually took over her teachings once the missionaries departed.

Though her contract stated she was not to be a servant, the circumstances of people of color in that day determined that she was a servant at least part-time to one of the families that she traveled with. In 1825, the matriarch of the family that she was helping became ill, and she returned to the USA, where she stayed with them for about five years.

Betsey taught briefly at an infant school in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, established a school for Native Americans at Grape Island, Canada, and then returned to Princeton in 1835 and taught in its school for blacks. In 1840, she helped found Princeton’s First Presbyterian Church of Color, which in 1848 was renamed the Witherspoon Street Church.

On October 24, 1865, Betsey passed away and was buried in Cooperstown, New York. Like many early missionaries, she kept a diary of her travels – versions published in the Christian Advocate in 1824 and 1825.

Fanny Coppin served in South Africa; 1902 – 1912.

Fanny Coppin S Africa

Fanny Jackson Coppin was born in 1837. She was born a slave. In 1849, her aunt ensured her freedom. Afterward, she served as a servant until 1860. In 1860, she enrolled in Oberlin College in Ohio, the first US college to accept black and female students. While a student, she taught an evening course for free African Americans in reading and writing, and she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in 1865.

In 1881 Fanny married Rev. Levi Jenkins Coppin, pastor of the Bethel AME Church in Baltimore. Pastor Coppins was elected an AME bishop in 1900, and he was assigned to Cape Town, South Africa. The couple went to South Africa in 1902 and were known for much missionary work. They founded the Bethel Institute, a missionary school with self-help programs. In 1912, Fanny’s health forced her to return to Philadelphia, and she died on January 21, 1913. Coppin State University (Baltimore) was named after Fanny.



George Leile served in Jamaica; 1782 to 1828

George Leile was born a slave in Virginia around 1750. He was led to Christ in 1774 in the church where his master, Mr. Sharpe, was a deacon. In 1778, Liele went to Savannah, Georgia, where he became the First African Baptist Church’s founding pastor–the first permanent church building in America “built by blacks, for blacks.”.

In 1782 George Leile left with his wife and four children for Jamaica mainly to avoid being enslaved again – he fled as an indentured servant but began preaching the gospel as soon as he reached Jamaica. After two years – he had paid off his indenture and dedicated his life full time to the gospel. His venue; a race track in Kingston. He was soon able to gather a congregation, purchase a piece of land and build a church. By 1791 the new church, comprised of blacks and whites, grew to over 350 members. One year later, Kingston’s First African Baptist Church grew to over 500 baptized converts. Three other congregations grew out of this body and a school for black children – both slave and free. As his influence and church grew, so did the persecution. In 1805 Jamaica enacted a law forbidding preaching to slaves. Because of George Liele, the Englishmen William Knibb and Thomas Burchell returned to England to campaign to end slavery in Jamaica. Liele would not live to see the resolution because he died in 1828 – 10 years before slavery was eradicated in Jamaica. (some historical writings say he died in 1820)

One of the remarkable aspects of Leile’s ministry is that he did not wait for the Emancipation Proclamation before taking the gospel to the world. George Leile is the first black American foreign missionary, the first black person in the US to be ordained a Baptist pastor, likely the first black Baptist pastor in the world; and he is also believed to be the first American foreign missionary to contextualize the gospel.