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Category Archives: God’s Truth

True Worship Glorifies God

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All of the great religions of the world claim to worship god. In our society, any form of worship, when sincerely practiced, is thought to be acceptable The Bible tells us otherwise! It teaches that God Himself commands how He is to be worshiped. He also tells us how to dress when we worship Him, in a Holy manner – in modesty and humility. Not dancing around on a stage with tambourines, drums and electric guitars blasting over the loud speakers while we shake ourselves about, as if putting on a concert. This is bringing the world into God’s church and trying to bring Him down to our level instead of lifting Him up with praiseful Holy words to help prepare our hearts for the man of God’s message given him from on high.

Too many today use entertainment to draw the crowds with itching ears who only want a show and only want to hear that God loves them. Heaven forbid they are told that God hates our sin! They might leave and then the church would be out the money. And if you think God is present for these shows, you are sadly mistaken. He is at enmity with the world and therefore so are we His children. If we bring the world into a place meant for Holy worship, it is no longer Holy unto God and He cannot be there.

God called His people Israel to forsake other religions. He commanded them from the beginning not to worship the Lord as other peoples worship their “gods” – Deuteronomy 12:3, 31 “And ye shall overthrow their altars, and break their pillars, and burn their groves with fire; and ye shall hew down the graven images of their gods, and destroy the names of them out of that place…Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods.”

The Lord instructed that His people were to worship only in the place He chooses to make His name abide and that they come with blood sacrifices – Deuteronomy 12:5, 11, 14, 18, 26 “But unto the place which the LORD your God shall choose out of all your tribes to put his name there, even unto his habitation shall ye seek, and thither thou shalt come:…Then there shall be a place which the LORD your God shall choose to cause his name to dwell there; thither shall ye bring all that I command you; your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, your tithes, and the heave offering of your hand, and all your choice vows which ye vow unto the LORD:… But in the place which the LORD shall choose in one of thy tribes, there thou shalt offer thy burnt offerings, and there thou shalt do all that I command thee…But thou must eat them before the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD thy God shall choose, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates: and thou shalt rejoice before the LORD thy God in all that thou puttest thine hands unto…Only thy holy things which thou hast, and thy vows, thou shalt take, and go unto the place which the LORD shall choose:”

Worshiping God in any way we may choose is still not acceptable to Him. God must be worshiped where He chooses to make His name abide. God still requires an atoning sacrifice for sin. As God’s work in history progressed, He revealed Jesus Christ, the “name which is above every name” – Philippians 2:9 “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:”, as the final atoning Sacrifice for sin – Hebrews 9:12 “Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.”

Though there are many competing religions in the world, Jesus Christ came to reveal that He is the one and only way to the Father – John 14:6 “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” It is the job of God’s church to lead the lost to Salvation and healing through the Gospel/Good News of Jesus Christ. When so many are putting on a circus and trying to tickle the itching ears, they neglect to let the lost know that they need a Saviour. But, those false teachers calling themselves pastors, who only tell people that God loves them and teaches them out of worldly self-help books and corrupted versions of what once was God’s True Word, as they let the lost continue to be lost, will stand before Jesus on That day and give account. I sure would not want to be in their shoes. Can you imagine how it will feel as we, God’s Saints, have to stand and watch the lost we did not give the Good News to dragged into eternal hell and damnation as they look at us and ask, “Why did you not tell me?”

Christians can be assured that worship centered around Christ, and not for self-edification and euphoria, will glorify and please God, and that is what true worship is meant to be-glorifying and pleasing to God:

Luke 19:28-38 “And when he had thus spoken, he went before, ascending up to Jerusalem. And it came to pass, when he was come nigh to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount called the mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, Saying, Go ye into the village over against you; in the which at your entering ye shall find a colt tied, whereon yet never man sat: loose him, and bring him hither. And if any man ask you, Why do ye loose him? thus shall ye say unto him, Because the Lord hath need of him. And they that were sent went their way, and found even as he had said unto them. And as they were loosing the colt, the owners thereof said unto them, Why loose ye the colt? And they said, The Lord hath need of him. And they brought him to Jesus: and they cast their garments upon the colt, and they set Jesus thereon. And as he went, they spread their clothes in the way. And when he was come nigh, even now at the descent of the mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen; Saying, Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest.”

Ephesians 1:6 “To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.”

Many of these feel-good churches of today are confusing the masses with all the different corrupt versions of God’s Word and they are deceiving them instead of leading them to Salvation through Christ. And we wonder why our country is in the Godless sinful state it is today, tolerating all sin “because God loves us!” Shame on the churches who confuse and deceive! Repent and turn to true and Holy worship that prepares hearts for the message of Salvation. We are running out of time.

 
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Posted by on December 29, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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Holiness – Set Apart

“And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him;

and they were full of eyes within:

and they rest not day and night, saying,

Holy, holy, holy, LORD God Almighty,

which was, and is, and is to come.” Revelation 4:8

We are to be holy or “set apart” unto the Lord. We are not to be conformed to this evil world. When we choose not to try and live holy as He is holy, the Holy Spirit within us convicts us and we cannot be happy and experience the joy of the Lord. What a sad way to live. Holiness is the character of God and the code for our Christian conduct. Our KJV Scriptures show us the holiness of God and express God’s desire for His children to develop a similar holiness:

Exodus 19:6 – “And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation.” Leviticus 11:44, 45 – “For I am the LORD your God: ye shall therefore sanctify yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy: neither shall ye defile yourselves with any manner of creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. For I am the LORD that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.” Leviticus 19:1, 2 – “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the LORD your God am holy.” 1 Peter 1:15 – “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;”

The word holiness has several different meanings. In terms of our individual relationship to God, it means “set apart.” God is the “wholly other” or totally different One, unlike any other. Holiness also describes a way to live. Christians are called to live according to a different set of principles and standards than the ungodly world–to lead a pure life in accordance with God’s call, commandments, and consequences. This “set apart” life of righteousness is of God and from God. 1 Corinthians 1:2 – “Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both their’s and our’s:” 1 Corinthians 3:16, 17 – “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.” And let us not forget what the word Christian means – to be Christ-like. These days, that word gets thrown around very loosely so that many do not take it as seriously as it is meant to be. The world looks at many of today’s so-called Christians and laughs at them, saying, “If that is Christianity, I want no part of it.” So many think it is okay to live with one foot in the world and the other in the Kingdom of Heaven because so many of today’s feel-good churches teach them that they can do whatever they want because God loves them. Yes God loves us, but He hates our sin, and if we say we are Christian and continue in any sin, we have broken fellowship with our Lord. And we have ruined our testimony for Him in the eyes of this world. A holy life is a life that always chooses to do what God desires, just as Jesus did when He came here from Heaven and lived a holy life as an example for us.

Obedient believers are instructed to NO LONGER be conformed to their old desires and patterns of thinking and behaving 1 Peter 1:13-16 – “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” We see over and over in God’s Word that we are to be holy, as He is holy. The conforming to a life of holiness, however, requires more than the “will” of a person to “change.” It is the work of the Holy Spirit made possible through Christ’s death on the cross. So if we are putting substances in our bodies that affect our minds, we are numbing that Holy Spirit. That is when we choose to do our own thing and go the way of the world, instead of conforming our minds and hearts to the heart of Christ. How sad that the precious Holy Spirit of God gets drug through every bad choice we make.

True happiness is illustrated only in God, though the Holy Spirit empowers His children to pursue holiness 1 Thessalonians 4:7, 8 – “For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.” The good news is that as we seek to be holy and invite the Holy Spirit to do His work in us, the Lord responds by cleansing us, leading us into His righteous and holy ways, and strengthening us to withstand the temptation to return to our former “ungoldly lives.”

We cannot make ourselves holy; but, if we desire to become holy and set our wills toward following the Lord, He will make us holy. The Lord never commands us to do something that He does not enable us to do Romans 4:21 – “And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.” God always prepares the way and provides us with His resources to accomplish His plan. The Holy Spirit is our greatest resource for living a holy life unto God. So many forget that God’s saints will live a holy life with Him in Heaven for eternity. Why not start practicing living holy unto Him now.

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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Who hath woe? Who hath sorrow? Who hath contentions? Who hath babbling? Who hath wounds without cause? Who hath redness of eyes?

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Proverbs 23:29-32 “Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, (don’t even look at it) when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.”

When I was much younger, it was difficult for me to take much time in the Book of Proverbs. I think we all know why. It is all purely common sense that God shares with us about anything and everything we could think of to get ourselves into in this world. I used to be deceived about the use of wine/alcohol in my own life. I used to believe the phrase, “Everything in moderation.” After spending much time with my Lord and His Word, I do not see God condoning us to put any type of alcohol nor anything harmful into our bodies. He tells us that our bodies are His temple if we are saved, His Holy Spirit dwells in us. What we do to ourselves we do to the Holy Spirit. And the effects of alcohol definitely quench/numb the Holy Spirit in us. Therefore, we make horrible fleshly decisions while under it’s effect. God’s Word tell us to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Even one drop of alcohol grieves our Holy Spirit. Sigh, why must some of us choose to go our own way, which means we learn lessons the hard way, and only see the truth when we are aged?

To begin my thoughts on this subject, I want to first point out that the word wine in the Bible is not always referring to fermented alcohol, it is referring to the fruit of the vine, grape juice. A study of the Greek words used in context with the Scripture tells us that for the most part, it is speaking of grape juice. And we need to understand that they had wells as their source for water in most parts then, and it was terrible for their stomachs. Research has shown that there is an enzyme in grape juice that is very good for the stomach’s digestive system. Some use it for an excuse to drink wine, but we do not have to have the wine to get it, it is in the grape juice. So be aware that wine in the Bible is not always referring to the wine when it is red.

Oh, and here is something else I used to use to condone drinking, “Jesus turned the water into wine at the wedding in Cana. So it must be okay.” The first thing I learned about that being false is that in Proverbs 20:1 God tells us exactly what He thinks about us drinking wine, “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.” So we see that He is giving us the free will to drink alcohol, but He is not telling us that He condones it. He is actually telling us how it will affect us, and that we are indeed fools/not wise if we choose to imbibe in it and thereby be deceived. We will face the consequences. I have seen too much harm to loved ones and family from the use of alcohol.

God also says in Proverbs 23:31Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright.” Of course we know He is speaking of fermented alcohol here.

Now you are reading me saying that “God has said” because God did indeed write His Word, okay? So why would He tell us in one instance why we ought not do something and then send His perfect and Holy only begotten Son to make the substance He told us to not even look upon, and serve it to people? God does not contradict Himself! Neither would He say, “Here ya go, drink this fermented wine.”

Something else God has revealed to me in this Scripture is that the celebration had been going on for some time and they ran out of wine, and at that point many of them were quite drunk. Do we really believe that Jesus would really make more alcohol for them to drink and become more drunk on?! At one point in my life, I worked in a bar and when some had too much to drink, we had to shut them off, for their own safety and for the safety of others. If we as humans have that rule, do we really believe Jesus is going to make and give them more alcohol to drink? See, common sense!

So what it all boils down to is this, we all have free will and God lets us learn things the hard way, if we choose to do so. We do not have to wait for Him to speak to us each individually whether He wants us to do something or not. He has laid it all out in His Word for us to know. And once we know the truth, the best choice we can make, if we truly love and want to obey God is to accept and surrender to His will and not our own.

Some who are too involved in the things of this world mock me for these kinds of beliefs. That’s okay. If you truly seek the truth, He will show you too. It matters not to me what others think. I do not look down on you, as I was once where you are. That is between you and the Lord. I am not responsible for anyone else, only myself and my own walk with my Lord. I will end with this Scripture:

Galatians 1:10 “For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.”

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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Prayers of the Unrighteous

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God will not hear the prayers of the unrighteous who refuse to confess and let go of sin in their lives. Do today’s Christians really understand what God’s Word says about how to make sure God will hear and answer our prayers? It seems that people forget now a-days that God is Holy and therefore we are to be Holy. Because He is Holy, He will not hear our prayers if there is some sin that we have not confessed or that we refuse to let go of. Our prayers do not go any higher than our ceiling if we are living as the unrighteous. It is a good habit to get into each day to go before our Lord and ask Him to search our hearts, as we search our hearts for un-confessed sin.

To live righteously simply means to do our best to live right according to our Lord and his Word; to live by Godly morals and values that He teaches in His Word. When we ignore sin in our lives and live according to this world’s low standards, therefore satan’s standards, we create a separation or break in fellowship with the Lord God and He will not hear our prayers.

But you don’t have to take my word for it. See what His Word says for yourselves. And if you are not sure if some of the things you are doing are sin, just go to Him and ask Him and He will sure let you know.

John 9:31 “Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth.”

Proverbs 28:9 ” He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.”

I Peter 3:12 “For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.”

Psalms 66:18 “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:”

Proverbs 15:29 “The LORD is far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous.

James 5:16 “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

Isaiah 59:2 “But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.”

James 4:4 “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”

James 4:3 “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.”

 
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Posted by on October 17, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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Lot’s Disobedient Wife

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Lot’s wife personifies the classic wisdom “for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matthew 6:21). Jesus used her as an example of someone who started the right way, but looked back, because she was not completely willing to give up her old ways to follow God in obedience – Luke 17:31-33 “Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed. In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back. Remember Lot’s wife. Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.”

Okay, we read in God’s Word that Lot was a rich and very influential man, but nowhere does it say much about his wife. We see no mention of her name, nor her family or even her race. However, it is indicated that she was a worldly, materialistic woman. She definitely failed in the spiritual nurturing of her children – her daughters married men of Sodom, and then committed incest with their own father – Genesis 19:30-35 “And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters. And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth: Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.”

This also speaks to us about the effects of alcohol on our minds, and why God’s Word warns us against even looking at it – Proverbs 23:29-35 “Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. LOOK NOT thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder. Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things. Yea, thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lieth upon the top of a mast. They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it not: when shall I awake? I will seek it yet again.”

SIDE NOTE: Way too many Christians fail to understand that most places the Bible mentions wine, like when Jesus turned water into wine, that it is not speaking of alcohol. This Scripture in Proverbs explains about the wine that has turned to alcohol and why we are to not even look upon it. What Jesus made for the wedding was grape juice. Jesus is pure and holy, He would never make something that is unholy and corrupts men’s minds. When grape juice turns to alcohol, it becomes something rotten. Wine in the Bible when used in the right sense speaks of “the pure blood of the grape.” Our Saviour who, throughout the Bible, urges people not to drink would certainly not create something to contradict His own word and to ruin the men He came to save! I spent many years of my life letting the enemy deceive me into thinking that because the Bible says not to be ‘drunk’ with wine, it was okay in moderation. Jesus has revealed His truth to me that even in moderation, it is not what He and His Word are telling us at all. He tells us to be filled with His Holy Spirit. If we consume even one sip of alcohol, or any substance that affects our minds, it grieves the Holy Spirit to the point that we are not Spirit-filled. He is there, but he is numbed. And I have learned by experience that the joy that comes with being Spirit-filled far surpasses any temporary high that this sinful world has to offer. AND, there is no convicting guilt!

Lot’s wife did not have to die. She was offered a choice–obedience and life or disobedience and death in pursuit of the pleasures of the world. We do not know where Lot met his wife, nor when they were married, but we do know that they had two daughters (Genesis 19:16). The kidnapping of Lot and his family (Genesis 14) would have included his wife, and she would have been among the company that was rescued by Abraham since Abraham “brought again his brother Lot, and his goods, and the women also, and the people” (Genesis 14:16) This means that she may well have heard Melchizedek’s witness for God (Genesis 14:19, 20). In other words, she was well aware of the Lord and His dealings with Abraham. BUT the lifestyle of Sodom had a strong hold on her.

Sodom was a sophisticated town, offering a wide variety of cultural opportunities. The immorality had degenerated to the lowest point of sexual perversion so much that our term “sodomy” comes from the name of this city. (Today, Sodomites have twisted and changed the word to describe their lifestyle as gay and homosexual, so in their minds it does not sound so bad, and more people will accept their sin.)

Lot, though called a “righteous man,” seemed also to be entangled in the grip of Sodom’s influence – 2 Peter 2:7, 8 – “And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)”

Unfortunately, Lot chose to raise his family in Sodom, even though it’s reputation for depravity was well known. Still, the Lord sent messengers to rescue this family from their own destructive choices.

God wanted to save Lot’s wife. He sent angels to warn, to escort, and finally they had to physically pull her out of harm’s way. Whether she understood exactly what would happen is uncertain, but being escorted by angels in this fashion surely had to alert her to something supernatural.

The destruction most likely began with a violent earthquake, which set fire to the gases and sulphur. Firebrands were falling around her. Though she had followed her husband into the wilderness, she had the same problem the Israelites did in the wilderness as they “in their hearts turned back again into Egypt” (Acts 7:39). Just like the Israelites, she was destroyed. But she did not have to be.

This can be an example to us that once we are saved, we must never let ourselves look back and yearn for Egypt (our past sinful ways). We must stay the course until we see Him face to face!

 
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Posted by on September 10, 2018 in God's Truth, Uncategorized

 

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Tidbits from the Book of James – Part 6

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Ahhh. Here it is, the teaching about the power of our tongues. The smallest member of our body, yet it holds the greatest power to hurt or to help. It is indeed the most difficult to control, and can only get harder as we get older if we are not growing in our walk with the Lord. If we think about it, we will come to the conclusion that pride is most often the instigator of an unruly tongue.

And words on getting wisdom from the Heavenly Father. If we seek and take hold of that wisdom, will it not strengthen us to have better control of our tongues?

James 3

1 My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.

2 For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.

3 Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body.

4 Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth.

5 Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!

6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.

7 For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind:

8 But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

9 Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.

10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

11 Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?

12 Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.

Matthew Henry explains verses 13-18 very well:

These verses show the difference between men’s pretending to be wise, and their being really so. He who thinks well, or he who talks well, is not wise in the sense of the Scripture, if he does not live and act well. True wisdom may be known by the meekness of the spirit and temper. Those who live in malice, envy, and contention, live in confusion; and are liable to be provoked and hurried to any evil work. Such wisdom comes not down from above, but springs up from earthly principles, acts on earthly motives, and is intent on serving earthly purposes. Those who are lifted up with such wisdom, described by the apostle James, is near to the Christian love, described by the apostle Paul; and both are so described that every man may fully prove the reality of his attainments in them. It has no disguise or deceit. It cannot fall in with those managements the world counts wise, which are crafty and guileful; but it is sincere, and open, and steady, and uniform, and consistent with itself. May the purity, peace, gentleness, teachableness, and mercy shown in all our actions, and the fruits of righteousness abounding in our lives, prove that God has bestowed upon us this excellent gift.

13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.

14 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.

15 This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish.

16 For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.

17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.

 
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Posted by on June 30, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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Tidbits from the Book of James – Part 5

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Today’s tidbit is concerning faith and works. Works have absolutely nothing to do with our Salvation, other than as fruit of our Salvation; works will not get us to Heaven. But, once we are saved, we ought to want to work for Christ, and our works are evidence of our faith in Jesus unto Salvation. Our works are our fruits of our Salvation. So faith without works is dead. All born-again saints will stand before Jesus and have our works (after Salvation) tested by the fire. Those works born out of wrong motivation and not glorifying Christ will be burned up. Those works done for the sake of Christ and the Gospel will come out of the fire and we will receive our crowns for them. I look forward to laying those crowns at the feet of Jesus in gratitude for the ultimate sacrifice He paid for me so that I can live eternally with Him as my Lord and King.

James 2:14-26

14 What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?

15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food,

16 And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? (This is a great example of when a brother or sister says to us that they have a need and we respond with, “I will pray for you.” That is all good and well. We are to pray for our brethren. But what about actually using some of the increase that God has blessed us with to put our prayers into action and help them by supplying their need, as the Holy Spirit leads. God blesses us and provides well for us in order for us to help those less fortunate, especially our brothers and sisters in Christ.)

17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.

18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.

19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?

21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?

22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?

23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.

25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?

26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

Matthew Henry’s Commentary:

Those are wrong who put a mere notional belief of the gospel for the whole of evangelical religion, as many now do. No doubt, true faith alone, whereby men have part in Christ’s righteousness, atonement, and grace, saves their souls; but it produces holy fruits, and is shown to be real by its effect on their works; while mere assent to any form of doctrine, or mere historical belief of any facts, wholly differs from this saving faith.

A bare profession may gain the good opinion of pious people; and it may procure, in some cases, worldly good things; but what profit will it be, for any to gain the whole world, and to lose their souls? Can this faith save him? All things should be accounted profitable or unprofitable to us, as they tend to forward or hinder the salvation of our souls. This place of Scripture plainly shows that an opinion, or assent to the gospel, without works, is not faith. There is no way to show we really believe in Christ, but by being diligent in good works, from gospel motives, and for gospel purposes.

Men may boast to others, and be conceited of that which they really have not. There is not only to be assent in faith, but consent; not only an assent to the truth of the word, but a consent to take Christ. True believing is not an act of the understanding only, but a work of the whole heart.

That a justifying faith cannot be without works, is shown from two examples, Abraham and Rahab. Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned unto him for righteousness. Faith, producing such works, advanced him to peculiar favours. We see then, in verse 24 , how that by works a man is justified, not by a bare opinion or profession, or believing without obeying; but by having such faith as produces good works. And to have to deny his own reason, affections, and interests, is an action fit to try a believer.

Observe here, the wonderful power of faith in changing sinners. Rahab’s conduct proved her faith to be living, or having power; it showed that she believed with her heart, not merely by an assent of the understanding. Let us then take heed, for the best works, without faith, are dead; they want root and principle. By faith any thing we do is really good; as done in obedience to God, and aiming at his acceptance: the root is as though it were dead, when there is no fruit.

Faith is the root, good works are the fruits; and we must see to it that we have both. This is the grace of God wherein we stand, and we should stand to it. There is no middle state. Every one must either live God’s friend, or God’s enemy. Living to God, as it is the consequence of faith, which justifies and will save, obliges us to do nothing against him, but every thing for him and to him.

 
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Posted by on June 21, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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