Pastor's Corner

November 26th, 2017

Psalm 100:4 Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.

During this time of the year probably the number one verses is Psalm l00:4 or I Thessalonians 5:18 “In everything give thanks or Psalms 136:1 Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.  And there are many more than these that tell us to give thanks.

I love what Peterson does in his translation of the Message with Psalm 100:4 in the message it says, “Enter with the password: “Thank you!"

Throughout the scriptures it seems that the key that opens the door to God’s presence and help is when He sees’ a thankful heart. 

One of my favorite portions of scripture is found in Philippians 4 verses 4 through 8 for when we are faced with a storm in our life these verses tell us how to approach that difficulty in our life.  But notice in verse 6 it tells us “ to be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer”.  So this tells us that when we are faced with any difficulty or situation we are to pray.  But notice the rest of that verse for it says “with thanksgiving, let your requests be made to God.”

It makes me think that whenever we encounter the presence of God He is looking at our heart and looking for the thanksgiving that resides there. 

We seem to talk about this subject only during the holiday of Thanksgiving but we need to talk about it all year round.

May I ask are you healthy, and is your family healthy? Then be thankful because there are many that are not.   Do you have a job, and even though it may not be what you wanted and the environment may not be the best but give thanks because there are many who are out of work!

Maybe you complain about all your husband does is set at home and watch TV but be thankful, I can tell you of several women who would give anything if their husband would just come home. 

Are your kids driving you nuts, then be thankful, because too many families today have a wayward child and don’t know where they are. 

Now maybe you are saying, "Lee in all the illustrations that you gave it doesn’t fit my situation we do have some in our family that are sick, I am that one who doesn’t know where my child is or my husband."  You say, "I have been hurt by others and am having a tough time getting over it.  Or I did pray but I lost my loved one what am I to be thankful for?"

I remember in the darkest time of my life and I cried out to God the one thing that kept me going was hope, I found that when I had hope I could endure what I was going through.   Where does that hope come from, Psalm 33:20-22 Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and our shield.  For our heart shall rejoice in Him, Because we have trusted in His holy name. Let Your mercy, O LORD, be upon us, Just as we hope in You.

You see Jesus has told us that with men things are impossible but with God all things are possible.  He is the answer, Oh what a hope that we have that He and He alone will intervene in your situation. 

For those who have lost someone you loved, you have the greatest of hope for in the world to come what a day it will be.  Begin to look up all those verses that speak of Heaven and the death of Christians.  Underline those words of Jesus that tell you of that great day that is coming.  Read it every day until it becomes a reality in your life.

Pastor Lee Cruse who is so thankful for the congregation of Grace Bible Church.  



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November 19th, 2017

Psalms 100:4 Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.

I know that everyone knows how much I love my grandchildren, and probably get tired of how often I’m telling stories about them.  We went camping not long ago and three of them went with us, the little bitty ones.  I have always heard that men only have about 4000 words per day and women have about 40,000.  So, by the time a man gets home he has already used up all 4000 of his words and the wife is just getting warmed up and ready to talk. 

I always wondered where that started from, well on the camping trip my granddaughter talked and talked and at 3:00 in the morning she was still talking.  My youngest grandson has one of those Minions fart guns.  The other day when my son was on a conference call with four companies my grandson took that thing stood over the phone, when my son wasn’t looking and fired it.  My son had to explain to the people on the other end of the phone what had happened. 

Yes, I am a proud grandfather but the reason I tell you this today is because Lake, took a spelling test the other day and by the way made a hundred percent but that is not it.  He voluntarily wrote on the bottom of his paper “I lov mi family”.

I think that our Father in heaven loves those kinds of expressions of love, when nothing is rehearsed, just on the spur of the moment express your heart.  So much of what we do is calculated and thought out and I am afraid it is not sincere. 

If I were to ask most people what they thought the number one thing the Lord wants from you, most would answer all kinds of things and most of them would be of a religions nature.  But I believe the number one thing the Lord wants is you.  He desires intimacy with you. 

The crazy thing about this is He knows all about you, He knows about secret sins and all your mistakes and problem’s, but He still wants you.  One of the things that I have never gotten over is how much He loves me.  Me with all my sins, me with my lack of trust, me with all the problems and selfishness and yet He still desires that I draw close to Him.

This Thanksgiving when the problems begin to invade your life and you begin to think that you have nothing to be thankful for just look up and remember His desire is for you to draw near, and be close to Him.   I know also for many this time of year will not be easy because of the loss of someone you love.  The last thing I would ever do is diminish the pain and loss you are going through, but through your pain you can be thankful, that this is temporary because there is coming a time, very soon, when you and I will be reunited with our loved ones.  The Lord wants you and I to live our lives with expectation of what the future holds and the more I read His word and His promises the more thankful I can be. 

When we were children we used to sing, count your blessings name them one by one.  That is a great start because if we were to do that we would be surprised just how much we have to be thankful for. 

Pastor Lee and Crickett Cruse hoping you and your family will have a wonderful Thanksgiving.   



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October 22nd, 2017

John 9:1-3: "Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?" Jesus answered, "Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him."

Jesus and the disciples come upon a man who was born blind from birth. The disciples ask the Lord the question of why: Who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus gives them the answer but I want you to realize something else.

As we come to the Lord and the more and more we study His word the effect should be that we become more tender in our heart toward other people. The disciples when they looked upon this poor man saw him only as a theological issue. They didn’t see the man, and sometimes when we are talking with others or feeding others or issuing cloths to others do we see what the Lord sees. Do we gaze upon them with the eyes of Jesus and consider their heart?

How dangerous it is to study doctrinal issues or theological issues and see the reality of people. I love the study of Eschatology of the Second Coming and the Rapture. But the purpose of studying those topics is that it will create in me an urgency to lead others to the Lord. You may know all the events and what will happen next for the Lords coming, but how long has it been since you shared your faith with someone to get them to come to Christ before it is too late for them.

Jesus response to the blind man was one of compassion and love. The reason the disciples asked the way they did is because the Jews often attributed physical limitation to punishment for wrongdoing. So was the blindness the result of the man’s personal sin?

In their minds, the disability could be attributed to one of three types of sin:

1. Prenatal sin, an idea drawn from the story of Jacob and Esau in Genesis 26; the Jews believed that sinning in the womb was possible.

2. Some pre-existing sin of the man

3. Generational sin-a punishment for the wrongdoing of the man’s parents.

Jesus response in verse 3 resolves the issue and dispels any question related to blame: Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.

How we are like the disciples in that much of what we think is God’s way of doing things are not. I think of that verse which says that Israel knew the Acts of God but Moses knew His ways. The more we study and delve into the word of God the more we discover that many of the ideas and traditions of man, many of the beliefs of man are not from the Lord.

I think the main thing that I get from this portion of scripture is how we see and look at others. The Bible tells us when we got saved we were given the mind of Christ, and that’s the God given ability to love and to see people for who they really are. Even those that may be angry- but when we look beyond the anger we see their frustration and their feelings of loneliness. May the Lord give us the eyes and the heart of our Lord.

Pastor Lee Cruse, who wants to try to love like our Lord loved.



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October 15th, 2017

Matthew 17:14: "And when they had come to the multitude, a man came to Him, kneeling down to Him and saying, …"

In Luke 9:37 tells us that when Jesus came off of the mountain a great multitude met him.

These verses before us are interesting to me because before Jesus came down off the mountain, He was transfigured before them and the appearance of His face was altered and His robe became white and glistening. Or in other words the glory of God came down and exposed Jesus for who He really was: the Son of the Almighty God.

This was such a powerful picture and standing beside Jesus was Moses who represented the Law and Elijah who represented the prophets and they were discussing Jesus' destination to go to Calvary. The disciples, when they saw this, were afraid, Peter spoke up and wanted to build buildings for Moses, Elijah and Jesus, but God the Father would have none of this and told Peter to be quiet and to hear His Son Jesus.

Now, when Moses went to Mount Sinai to receive the law, Moses came down from the mountain, and Moses’s face shined and when the people saw him, they ran from Him. But now Jesus comes down from the mountain of Transfiguration and the people ran to Him.

It is also interesting to me that the giving of the law occurred 50 days after them leaving Egypt and 3,000 people died. 50 days after Calvary and the Resurrection of our Lord, on the day of Pentecost 3,000 people were saved.

What a difference between the law and the grace of God! Hebrews 4:16: "Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need."

My point is this: when you and I are going through something, rather than run from God we need to run to Him. When everything is going south on you and you are having a hard time keeping your head above water, run to Him that you may find grace to help in time of need. When someone has hurt you run to Him to find grace to help in time of need.

But what about when you are guilty and have sinned and done things that you are ashamed of? Many decide because they are embarrassed and don’t want anyone to know, they will stop going to church. Let me tell you; that is exactly what you don’t want to do. In fact, Hebrews 4:16 says “let us come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy…" When do I need mercy? When I have messed up and when I have sinned. But because of what Jesus accomplished at Calvary, you and I, even when we have sinned can come. We can run into the loving arms of Jesus.

If we learn to get into His presence every day and listen to His voice, then when the problems and unexpected disasters occur, because you walked with Him in the sunshine, He will walk with you in the storms. Because you walked with Him in joy and happiness, He will walk with you when the tears are falling.

One of the things that I hope my children know is that when things are not going good for them, they can come to me. When they have done something that they shouldn’t have done, they can come to me. Yet the Bible tells us “If we being evil know how to give good gifts to our children, how much more will our Heavenly Father give good things to those who ask."

Run to Him, Run to Him for He loves you with an everlasting love.

Pastor Lee Cruse, who needs to do more running and less worrying.



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October 8th, 2017

Deuteronomy 28:1-2, 15: "Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the LORD your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the LORD your God will set you high above all nations of the earth.

 "And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the LORD your God:

vs15 "But it shall come to pass, if you do not obey the voice of the LORD your God, to observe carefully all His commandments and His statutes which I command you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you:"

My heart is heavy today, Monday October 2, 2017 for when I awoke this morning the news was full of terrible atrocities that took place in Las Vegas Nevada.  They at this time are reporting 58 dead and between 4 to 5 hundred wounded or hurt. 

As I think about this, my mind went back to the book of Deuteronomy where God told His people that if they would obey His voice or His word and put Him in His rightful place, first, then He would bless them.  But then He tells us that if we as a nation won’t obey His voice or His word then curses will come upon us. 

I believe this is where we are today, we have told the Lord in so many areas of our culture that we don’t need Him.  We did that in our schools and look what has happened even to the point of little innocent kindergarten children being killed.

We have told him that we don’t need Him in our Judicial system and our Supreme Court the highest court in the land have handed down judgments that have gone against not only common sense but against God’s Holy Word. 

We have told him that we don’t need Him in our Government and as a result the deficit of this country is so high that we are teetering on a financial collapse and the ruination of this country.  I am sorry to say we now have a government that is totally inept and has no wisdom on how to fix any of the problems we are having. Wisdom comes from God, we have plenty of knowledge but the ability to use that knowledge is non-existent and that is wisdom. 

Some would say you are saying that God is causing this, no I am not, for I have come to believe that Jesus came on a rescue mission to save us.  He did not come to condemn us, because we were already condemned.  God is not causing the tragedies that we see, He wants to protect us from them, but we refuse to dwell in the secret place of the most High and shall abide under the shadow of the of the almighty because then He is my refuge and my fortress, my God and in Him will I trust. (Ps. 91:1-2)

God has warned us if we are not willing to allow Him to be the hiding place by trusting in Him and only Him then He can’t protect us. 

I believe that America is on a collision course for destruction unless we turn to God.  The question will we, I am afraid of that answer.  I remember walking in Galilee with Dr. David Reagan, we were walking by the Sea of Galilee where Jesus preached the Sermon on the Mount.  I ask this man who has studied the Word of God his entire life and is one of the most respected men in the Study of Eschatology what is the hope for America. 

He looked at me and said “I wish I could say it was II Chronicles 7:14, but I am afraid this is not going to happen”  He went on “the hope for America is the Coming of our Lord. 

What we see in Las Vegas is exactly what Jesus said “because lawlessness will increase the love of many will wax cold”. 

May we pray for the peace of Jerusalem, which is the second coming of our Lord. 

Pastor Lee Cruse who wants the Lord to come.



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October 1st, 2017

Matthew 9:2 Then behold, they brought to Him a paralytic lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you."

In the midst of Jesus’s teaching they brought to Him a paralytic, a man paralyzed lying on a bed. How important this lesson is to us who love and care about our family, friends and neighbors who are away from the Lord or have not found Him and are still searching. Notice what it says, when Jesus saw their faith. Not the faith of the man paralyzed on the bed but those who had brought him to Jesus.

I believe that God can and will move mountains to save someone, and I further believe that He will move when those around a lost person demonstrate a degree of faith and concern. Now Jesus says to the man “be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you” and that was the one thing that really ticked off those around this man, especially the religious Pharisees and Priest of that day.

Now Jesus who the Bible says knew what was in all men, understood what they were thinking and asked them a question. Which is easier to say your sins are forgiven or to say take up your bed and walk. You see the real question was who Jesus said that He was.

That was the burr under their saddle, just like it is today for many. There are many who try to diminish who Jesus is by saying that Jesus never said He was God. But read John 5:17-18, Jesus was saying He was God.

Throughout the book of John Jesus said He was “I Am”. To the Jew that meant He was God. The very reason the Pharisees had Jesus crucified “He said He was God” The story goes on and Jesus tells them, because of their unbelief He would demonstrate why He had power to forgive sins. He told the man to get up and take his bed and walk and He did. Demonstrating Jesus was God and only God could forgive sins. This past week I heard a man give his testimony and he made a statement that troubled me, he said “he went to the priest to be dissolved of his sins”. My friends I believe only Jesus can dissolve us of our sins and when we come to Jesus and we confess our sins the Bible tells us that He is “faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us of all of our sins. Jesus who was God has the power to forgive all sins. The Bible tells us in Romans 5:20 …But where sin abounded grace bounded much more. May I ask, have you come to the one who came to seek and to save that which was lost? How about today just come the way you are?

Pastor Lee Cruse, that there was a time in my life I came to Him and He forgave Me.



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September 17th, 2017

Philippians 4:14 -17: “Nevertheless you have done well that you shared in my distress.  Now you Philippians know also that in the beginning of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church shared with me concerning giving and receiving but you only. For even in Thessalonica you sent aid once and again for my necessities. Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that abounds to your account.

Paul in writing to the Philippine Church commends them for their generosity and their compassion toward others.  They gave sacrificially and many gave when they didn’t have it to give.  They gave because they had love for the brethren.  Jesus once said that the world will know that we are His disciples if we have love one for another.

Last Sunday, God presented us with an opportunity to show our love for others to show comfort and caring for those that have just gone through one of the worst Hurricanes Florida has had.  The moment that I told you of their need and then we prayed for the Lord to give us an opportunity to share in this effort.  On Saturday, when I got the call from Brother Jonathan Vorce from the Lake Wood Church of God, I believe that God was orchestrating an opportunity for His people to come together in love.

I can’t imagine what it would be like to lose your home, and everything you have.  I also heard that in Texas only 7% had flood Insurance.  This disaster will last for months, maybe years.

Grace people came through. You raised right at $3,000 dollars and that didn’t include all the cases of water and cleaning supplies our church is sending back with them two generators and two chainsaws that we purchased at Lowes.  Does it not feel good to give, no wonder that God loves a cheerful giver.

I want you to know I am so proud of you and to be called your pastor.  What wonderful and generous people we have with such a big heart. 

Pastor Lee Cruse the pastor of the Grace Bible Church that Jesus Loves.

 



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September 10th, 2017

1 Corinthians 2:3: “I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.”

I once heard John Piper, who I greatly admire, talking to a group of young pastors and told them if there is one verse a pastor should live by it is I Corinthians 2:3. That I was with you, when you were going through the valley I was with you, when you were setting by side your loved one’s sick bed I was with you. When you walked to the grave side I was with you.

I didn’t delegate someone else to go, no it was me that was there standing by your side. To me this is the role of a pastor. Today when so many are looking for specific things in a church, I believe the number one thing is to have a caring pastor and a loving church.

Maybe right now you don’t see it, but I am afraid that the day will come when you will see it. It is interesting to me that the Bible when it talks about church attendance says in the book of Hebrews 10:25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. Did you notice that it says, “exhorting one another” that means your pastor and church is there for you?

Now some will say I would do that but I am afraid in those situations that I would not know what to say. Number one, what we are to say, the Lord will give us the words. (Col.4:4) But years ago I read a book by a man by the name of Joseph Bylie and the book was called “A View from a Hurst”. Joseph Bylie was a medical doctor who had lost three children. He lost a son to a motor vehicle accident at 17. He lost another child to leukemia at around 7 or 8 and he lost an infant. One of the things that he said was that the people He appreciated so much was those who came and didn’t try to explain why this had happened.

I know that many say things out of an uncomfortable ignorance. They see the person in pain and they truly want to make it better but they are uncomfortable and think if they could say the right thing they will relieve the agony this person is going through. But my friend I have been in that position more than I want to think about and I have learned that I don’t know why this tragedy has happened and neither does anyone else only the Lord knows.

Dr. Bylie said those he appreciated were those who came and sat and said nothing but let him know they were there and if he needed anything to let them know. Sometimes silence is golden and it is also powerful.

Now, understand that I am not saying that there are never times when the Holy Spirit does ask you to speak up and to use a comforting scripture to help someone. But you have to make sure that it is the Holy Spirit that is telling you to speak.

I also believe this verse is for parents and dads. So many families that I have done funerals for the one thing when asked about their mother or dad was they were always there for me. That means physically but it also means emotionally and mentally. It pays off to give yourself to others. Jesus said He came not to be served but to serve, and that should be our goal also.

Pastor Lee Cruse who wants to be there for this congregation.



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September 3rd, 2017

2 Corinthians 3:2: "You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody."

When you and I have come to know the Lord, one of the things that I believe happens is that there is a distinctive change that takes place within us. The Hope of Glory or Heaven for you and I is Christ in Us. (Col.1:27) Simply this means that people will see Jesus in our lives and our actions. 

The Bible is the living word of God (John 6:63) and we believe, because of that word living in us. (John 5:38) The word of God in the Greek is called the Spermatozoa.  When the seed of the word is planted deep into our hearts, God says that His word will not return unto Him void but would accomplish what He set it out to do. (Isa. 55:11). So when a person reads the word of God and that seed goes deep into his or her heart it will have an effect. 

Jesus is called the Logos or the word of God. (John 1:1) Most people in this culture will probably never pick up the Bible to read it.  Satan doesn’t want them to, because he knows that it will have a profound impact on them.  But people will watch you, they will watch your actions, they will listen to what you say.  My question to you is, will they see you or will they see Christ in You. 

Many people out in public will be seen as very religious but then they go home and it’s a different picture.  You can study the word, and study the word, but we must allow it to have an effect on us.  We are like the Sower and Seed, and remember that only one fell on good ground.  Other things prohibited the seed from growing.

Does your family see Christ in you, and do they see the outworking of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in you?  How about your spouse, has your marriage become legalistic that yes you are married and you do all the things that look like you have a successful marriage but is there passion?  Does your spouse feel that you want to spend time with her or him?  Many couples are like two passing ships in the middle of the night! 

May I also ask as we study the word do you cherry pick the portions that you want to look at or do you skip over those sections that make you feel uncomfortable.  For Instance, I Corinthians 7 is a chapter that every couple should read, it tells how to keep passion in your marriage where that you look forward to your husband coming home and he is looking forward to coming home. 

I find that many of the things that we are so embarrassed about, the intimate things that are between Husbands and wives, we refuse to discuss.  Yet these are the very things that God Himself established. But the devil out in the world doesn’t think they are taboo and so Satan takes the pure and righteous things and desecrates them. 

Men need to learn to touch their wives with a loving touch that has nothing to do with sex.  That your wife feels your touch and knows it is a touch of love.  Men need that reassurance that his wife steal thinks he’s the one.  I once heard a husband say when told he needed to tell his wife he loved her, he said “I told her that I loved her when we got married and thought that was enough”.   Now we all know that is ridiculous, your wife needs to be told you love her on a regular basis. 

But your husband needs that reassurance also, that you think he is your man.  Now some may be saying that’s crazy but Christ in you won’t.  Christ in you steps out of your comfort zone and does what the Holy Spirit tells you to do! 

Pastor Lee Cruse who needs to turn the Almighty Son of God loose in him.          



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August 27th, 2017

Romans 4:17: ("I have made you a father of many nations") in the presence of Him whom he believed--God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did;

I want to focus on the last phrase of this verse “who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did”.  This is a powerful verse of scripture.  This verse identifies who we as God’s children are.  We are of such faith in Jehovah God and His Word that we trust his word and the illumination of the Holy Spirit, that although something has not happened or doesn’t exist we can claim that it does. 

1 John 5:14-15 tells us that we have a confidence in Him that if we ask anything according to His will He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.  This is saying that we can have such a confidence in Him and His word that we can know that we have something before we have it.  That is calling those things that are not as though they are. 

I begin to think about this and how the devil who tries to imitate everything our Father in Heaven does, makes it look like the Lords work but the outcome is totally different.

For instance, your past.  One of the things that I have tried to teach here is that “We cannot afford to entertain any thought about us that God doesn’t think about us”.  If you have come to Jesus in real repentance and submission and ask Him to be your Lord and Savior then all your sins have been forgiven and those things in your past you wish you hadn’t done are gone.  He has separated you from them and your past as far as the East is from the West.  This also includes those of you who became a Christian, His child but then messed up.   Listen if God will forgive us while we were sinners then will He not forgive us when we are His children. 

Satan loves to bring up our past and even create doubts within us that we are not really saved.   The Lord is wanting to raise up a people who can say Satan has nothing in me. No part of my history, because my history declares the effectiveness of the Blood of Jesus.  And any time we visit our past apart from the blood of Jesus we visit a lie because our past no longer exists!    Jesus took care of it! 

So, when the devil comes at you through your mind and brings you things that are no longer part of you, and tries to call things that are not as though they are.  Allow the word of God to arise in you and you call those things that are, like the forgiveness of Jesus, and give Him the word.

Isaiah 43:25 I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; And I will not remember your sins.

Isaiah 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together," Says the LORD, "Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool.

Colossians 1:13-14 He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love,  in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. 

Pastor Lee Cruse who is grateful for Jesus who died for my sins that I would be forgiven. 



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