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Tidbits from the Book of James – Part 3

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Great tidbits on dealing with wrath/anger in times of trial and stress, being doers and not just hearers of the Word, liberty but not to sin, and what religion really means.

James 1:19-27

19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: (During our trials, or in times of dispute with others, our flesh’s first reaction is to become angry, but anger is most counter-productive at those times. We must remember to take a breath and have a little talk with Jesus and ask Him what He may be teaching us during these times. If we are in a dispute with someone, it is best to walk away and take some time to chill so we do not say things we will regret and cannot take back. I have had my share of flying off the handle and before I know it, ugliness has come spewing forth from my mouth and I have had to go back and ask forgiveness. In any event, it behooves us much to cool down and get with God before allowing our anger to cause us to sin.)

20 For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. (This is just common sense. If we give way to our wrath, God’s righteousness cannot abide in us, as with any sin we allow in our lives.)

21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. (Here our Lord implores us to lay apart, and to cast off as a filthy garment, all sinful actions and habits. It includes sinful thoughts that lead to sinful actions as well as our words. His Spirit and His Word empower us to then “receive with meekness” His engrafted Word. Engrafted=Cause to grow together; Fix or set securely or deeply.)

22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.

23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: (In a glass, blurry, unclear)

24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. (If we were to have the privilege of listening to a sermon given by an angel from Heaven every day of the week, but, we heard it only, that would never get us to heaven. Hearing without the doing makes us mere self-deceivers; and self-deceit is the worst deceit of all. When we dedicate private time to God’s Word it will reveal to each of us our corrupt nature, what our priorities are, and it will tell us plainly what we are. Once our sins are revealed, it is of utmost importance that we go to Jesus for forgiveness and cleansing and make the needed changes. If we go away, and ignore what God has revealed through His Word, instead of washing them off and applying what He shows us, we hear in vain. This is speaking of those who do not hear the word as they ought.)

25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed. (In hearing the word, we look into it for guidance and direction, and as we study it, it points to our spiritual life. As we are shown the things we need to work on, we make the needed changes in our character so as to continue to be more and more like Jesus. So, when we stay in the Word of God and let it influence us spiritually we are, and shall be, blessed in all our ways.)

26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain. (Oh boy, we sure could say a lot about the smallest member of our body and the tremendous harm that we are capable of doing–oh the power of our words! It takes a strong walk with the Lord and the power of His Holy Spirit to help us bridle our tongues.)

27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world. (Ahh, this word religion can really be misinterpreted, usually by those who are convicted by the Holy Spirit about it. They will use it to justify their lack of a true relationship with Jesus. How often do we hear, “I do not believe in organized religion because of the hypocrites, or I was hurt so badly at my last church.” But they have no problem going other places where there are hypocrites and mean people who hurt us. For are there not hypocrites, and all types of characters, every where we go? And they do not stop us from going there!

But that is not what God is speaking of here. The reason for going to church is so that we may sit under the teaching and preaching of a true man of God who preaches from God’s one true Word, the King James Bible, without watering it down for ‘itching ears.’ Once we are saved, we need to grow stronger in our relationship with Jesus, and a truly Godly church and Pastor will help us do that. The purpose of God’s church is to save souls from hell, and to teach His Children so that they can go and tell the Good News to others. We also have the prayers, love, and support of our brothers and sisters in Christ during tough times. True religion teaches us that we must do every thing as if we are we are in God’s presence, for once we are born-again, His Holy Spirit comes to live in us and He experiences everything we do. That is why we try to keep ourselves “unspotted” from the world and try to do good things like visiting the fatherless and widows and help them in their affliction.

 
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Posted by on May 7, 2018 in God's Truth

 

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The Doctrine of Salvation – Part 3

Complete and Real Salvation must include the following:

A. Repentance

1. Repentance means “a change of mind; to think differently; to reconsider.” When an unbeliever has a change of mind wrought in them by God, so that they do no longer trust in their own works, religion, efforts, merit, etc., for their salvation, but trust completely in Christ only and His finished work on Calvary for their salvation; this is a change of mind that is repentance. Hebrews 6:1, “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,”

2. Repentance at Salvation is not turning from all of our sins–for that would be works. No unbeliever has the power to turn from their sins. No unbeliever can possibly know all of their sins, so they can turn from them. Romans 7:14, “For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.” Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Ecclesiastes 7:20, “For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Psalms 39:5, “Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity. Selah.”

3. God repents, therefore repentance is not turning from our sins, for God has never sinned. Genesis 6:6, “And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.” Exodus 32:14, “And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people.” Judges 2:18, “And when the LORD raised them up judges, then the LORD was with the judge, and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge: for it repented the LORD because of their groanings by reason of them that oppressed them and vexed them.” 1 Samuel 15:35, “And Samuel came no more to see Saul until the day of his death: nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul: and the LORD repented that he had made Saul king over Israel.” 2 Samuel 24:16, “And when the angel stretched out his hand upon Jerusalem to destroy it, the LORD repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed the people, It is enough: stay now thine hand. And the angel of the LORD was by the threshingplace of Araunah the Jebusite.”

4. Repentance is from ignorance of God’s righteousness. Romans 10:3, “For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.” See Acts 17:30, “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:” Now, read that verse in its context: Acts 17:22-31, “Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you. God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.”

5. Repentance will result in a changed life. It should be noted that a changed life is not repentance, just the product of repentance. Proverbs 23:7, “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: …” Repentance is a change of mind and a man’s thinking will change his being. An evidence of repentance is a transformed life, but a transformed life is not repentance. 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

6. Sorrow for sin will work true repentance in an unbeliever at true salvation. This often results in an immediate turning from some sins. Other sins seem to be struggles all life long. 2 Corinthians 7:10, “For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.” This is the work of the Holy Ghost. John 16:8-9, “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me;” What sin? The sin of rejecting Christ! NOTE: Turning from sin is a good work of someone who is already saved. Romans 8:13, “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” This is the work of progressive sanctification in the believer. Sometimes sorrow for sins at Salvation is so great that it results in an immediate change in certain areas of that person’s life. That is a product of repentance. It is more correctly called sanctification.

B. Faith

1. Faith is a gift of God whereby He enables us to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and to trust wholly and completely in Him for Salvation. Romans 12:3, “For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.”

2. Faith is not mental assent nor the acknowledging of facts. The devils also believe and tremble (read James 2:19). For example, the faith given at Salvation is not saying that you believe in Jesus Christ like a person would believe in George Washington or Abraham Lincoln. The faith given at Salvation is perfect and complete trust, like a little girl who jumps into her father’s arms to protect her from an attacking dog. Her faith is completely in him. Another example is jumping out of an airplane. A person with a parachute puts 100% of his faith in the parachute to take him safely to his destination.

3. The agent that brings faith to us is the Word of God. Romans 10:17, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Galatians 3:24-25, “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.” Faith is “belief, trust, dependence, or confidence in someone else and their words.”

At salvation a person believes “in” Jesus Christ and “on” Jesus Christ. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” (John 3:16-18)

By “in” Jesus Christ, we mean in who He is. He is Lord. Do not confuse this with “Lordship Salvation.” What we mean is that a person who denies that Jesus Chris is Lord cannot be saved. Jesus said, “I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.” (John 8:24) Jesus is God manifest in the flesh. He is the Son of God and God the Son. “Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him. The son of David. He saith unto them, How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool? If David then call him Lord, How is he his son? And no man was able to answer him a word, neither durst any man from that day forth ask him any more questions.” (Matthew 22:42-46)

Here are a few other verses on the deity of Jesus Christ:

Isaiah 9:6 “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”

John 10:30 “I and my Father are one.”

1 Timothy 3:16 “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.”

Titus 2:13 “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;”

Acts 20:28 “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”

1 John 3:16 “Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.”

But, a person can believe “in” Jesus Christ and still go to Hell. They must also believe “on” Him. Acts 16:31 “And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” By believing “on” the Lord Jesus Christ we mean dependance upon what He has done for us. When we believe the gospel, we are saved. The Gospel is all about what Christ has done for us, and not what we can do for ourselves.

1 Corinthians 15:1-4 “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:”

So, a person MUST believe “in” Jesus Christ (who He is) and “on” Jesus Christ (what He has done) to be saved. That is the saving faith that God puts in us the moment we receive Jesus Christ as our Saviour.

At this divine moment in a person’s life, the following takes place or begins to take place: Regeneration, Justification, Redemption, Adoption, Sanctification, Imputation, Propitiation, Reconciliation, Atonement, and Glorification.

We will study each of these one by one in the next posting.

John 17:3 Inspirational Image

 
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Posted by on March 21, 2014 in God's Love, God's Truth

 

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The Doctrine of Salvation – Part 2

While on the cross, Jesus shed His blood to:

1. Satisfy the wrath and judgment of God against us for our sins – Romans 3:25 “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;” 1 John 2:2 “And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for our’s only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” Romans 5:9 “Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.”

2. Cleanse us from all of our sins, past, present, and future – Ephesians 1:7 “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;” 1 John 1:7 “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.” Acts 13:38 “Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins:” Colossians 1:14 “In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:” 2 Corinthians 1:10 “Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us;”

3. Justify us before God – Romans 3:24-25 “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;” Romans 5:1 “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:”

4. Make atonement for our souls – Romans 5:11 “And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.” Leviticus 17:11 “For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.”

5. Purge our conscience from dead works – Hebrews 9:14 “How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” Many people have their consciences dangerously salved by dead works. These works are called “dead” because they cannot give life. Many think the more they do, the better chance they will have to earn eternal life. This is a deception.

The problem with our efforts is the way God sees them. Isaiah the prophet said, “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.” (Isaiah 64:6) David said, “Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity. Selah.” (Psalms 39:5)

Paul said in Romans 3:10-20: “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes. Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.”

Dead works could include: Baptism, Communion, Sacraments, mission work, charity, giving money or time, learning a catechism, saying prayers, attending church, being in a ministry, reading the Bible, lent, fasting, etc. If these dead works could save us, why did Jesus have to die on the Cross? Why did His blood have to be shed? The blood of Jesus Christ purges our consciences from dead works. It makes us realize how silly it is to trust in ourselves, and what we can do, rather than trusting in Christ and what He has done.

Illustration: If you committed 10,000 crimes, and you had to stand before a judge, would you tell him how good you are? So, if a person sins just 3 times a day (over 1000 times a year), and is 40 years old, that is over 40,000 sins (crimes against God’s law) – 1 John 3:4 “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.”

No amount of “good” works can erase one sin. That is why what we call “good” works, God calls “dead” works and He expects us to repent of them. Hebrews 6:1 “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,” The foundation is the first thing built. The first thing to having a relationship with God, is to repent of the dead works you are trusting in.

This Salvation is entirely and wholly a work of God’s grace–without any works of man. Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” God’s grace (undeserved and unmerited favor) draws us to Himself (John 6:44), gives us repentance (2 Corinthians 7:10), and faith to believe (Romans 10:8-17).

The agent by which this is done is the person of the Holy Ghost – John 16:7-11 “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me; Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.”

No works, however good, can make Salvation more secure. Consider this truth in the following verses:

Romans 4:2-5 “For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.”

Romans 4:16 “Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,”

2 Timothy 1:9-10 “Who hath saved us, and called [us] with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:”

Romans 11:6 “And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then it is no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.”

Titus 3:5 “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;”

It is a free gift, not a reward! Romans 5:15 “But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.”

Romans 5:16, 18 “And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification…Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.”

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

 
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Posted by on March 17, 2014 in God's Love, God's Truth

 

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Doctrine of the Holy Spirit – Part 3

III. The Ministries of the Holy Spirit (Continued)

Holy SpiritF. Concerning Sinners

1. He convicts the world of sin and unbelief – John 16:8-9 “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me;”

2. He convinces those who are ignorant of God’s righteousness – John 16: 8, 10 “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more;” Romans 10:3 “For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.”

3. He convicts the unsaved of judgment and eternal punishment – John 16:8, 11 “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.” Revelation 20:10 “And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.”

4. He regenerates the believing sinner – Titus 3:5 “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;” John 3:1-8 “There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.” 1 Peter 1:23 “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.”

Church-of-the-Holy-Spirit-Jihlava2011interiérG. Concerning the Church

1. He helped form it –  Ephesians 2:19-22 “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”

2. He directs its Missionary work – Acts 8:29 “Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.” Acts 13:2, 4 ” As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus.” Acts 16:6-10 “Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia, After they were come to Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia: but the Spirit suffered them not. And they passing by Mysia came down to Troas. And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; There stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us. And after he had seen the vision, immediately we endeavoured to go into Macedonia, assuredly gathering that the Lord had called us for to preach the gospel unto them.”

3. He inspires the church’s singing service – Ephesians 5:18-19 “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;” Hebrews 2:12 “Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee.”

4. He anoints it preachers – 1 Corinthians 2:4 “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:”

5. He chooses its preachers – Acts 20:28 “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”

6. He warns its members – 1 Timothy 4:1 “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;”

7. He desires to make decisions for it – Acts 15:28 “For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;”

8. He speaks to it – Revelation 2:7 “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.” Revelation 2:11 “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.” See also Revelation 2:17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22.

9. He desires to head its visitation and evangelistic program – Acts 1:8 “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” Revelation 22:17 “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.”

Dove representation in the Baptism of Christ b...H. Concerning the Individual Believer

1. He regenerates the believing sinner – Titus 3:5 “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;” See also John 3:3-7; James 1:18; 1 Peter 1:23.

2. He baptizes the believing sinner into the Body of Christ – 1 Corinthians 12:13 “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.” Galatians 3:27 “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” It is a spiritual baptism into the body of Christ that saves us, not water baptism. Water baptism is our testimony that we have trusted Jesus as our Saviour.

3. He indwells the believing sinner – Romans 8:9 “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” John 7:37-39 “In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)” See also 1 Corinthians 2:12; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 1 Corinthians 6:19; Ephesians 3:16; and 1 John 3:24.

4. He seals the believing sinner – 2 Corinthians 1:22 “Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.” The word “seal” means “to stamp with a signet or private mark for security and preservation.” Compare Ezekiel 9:4 “And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.” And Revelation 7:3 “Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.” Revelation 9:4 “And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads.” Revelation 14:1 “And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.” Revelation 22:4 “And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads.”

5. He is the earnest of the believing sinner – 2 Corinthians 1:22 “”Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.” Ephesians 1:14 “Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.” 2 Corinthians 5:5 “Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit.” An “earnest” is a “pledge.” It is part of the purchase money or property given in advance as security for the rest. NOTE: These first five points are a “done deal” that cannot be undone! They assure us of having peace with God.

6. He desires to continually fill the believer – Luke 11:13 “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” Ephesians 5:18 “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;” New Testament Christians were filled often. There is one indwelling, but many fillings. Acts 2:4 “And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” Acts 4:8 “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,” Acts 4:31 “And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.” See also Acts 6:3; 7:55; 9:17; 11:24; 13:9; and 13:52.

This sixth ministry of the Holy Spirit assures us that we will have the peace of God. The filling of the Holy Spirit assures the believer of the following blessings:

Holy Spirit 27a. He will pray for the believer – Romans 8:26 “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.” Ephesians 6:18 “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;” Jude 1:20 “But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,”

b. He will guide the believer – John 16:13 “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.” Romans 8:14 “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.”

c. He will teach the believer – 1 John 2:20, 27 “But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things…But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.”

d. He will empower the believer for witnessing – Acts 1:8 “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” 1 Thessalonians 1:5 “For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.”

e. He will impart the love of Christ to, and through, the believer – Romans 5:5 “And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”

f. He will change the believer into the image of Jesus Christ – 2 Corinthians 3:18 “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the LORD.” Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law..”

g. He will strengthen the believer’s inner man – Ephesians 3:16 “That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;” 2 Corinthians 4:16 “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.”

h. He will reveal Biblical truth to the believer – 1 Corinthians 2:10 “But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.”

i. He will assure the believer of his or her salvation – Romans 8:16 “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:” 1 John 3:24 “And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.”

j. He will give the believer liberty from sin – Romans 8:2 “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” 2 Corinthians 3:17 “Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”

k. He will give the believer words to say – Mark 13:11 “But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.”

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Next Entry – The Names, Titles, and Symbols of the Holy Spirit

Holy Spirit 28Related articles

 
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Posted by on June 8, 2013 in God's Truth

 

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Doctrine of Death – Part 2

III. Who Has the Power of Death?

Rubens Last Judgment (detail) 1617

A. God has the power to put to death – “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:28); God has appointed that every person die and be judges someday. “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:” (Hebrews 9:27); “Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.” (Acts 17:31)

B. The devil has the power of death – “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;” (Hebrews 2:14)

When the Lord puts someone to death, it is because of His righteous judgment and the guilt of their sin: “Righteous art thou, O LORD, and upright are they judgments.” (Psalms 119:137); “And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments.” (Revelation 16:7); “For true and righteous are his judgments: …” (Revelation 19:2a)

When the devil kills, it is because he is a heartless murderer. One of his greatest lusts is to kill. “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, …” (John 8:44a)

“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”

Satan is the tempter behind wars, drunk driving deaths, abortions, murders, intentional starvation, genocide, homicide, ethnic cleansing, etc.

C. Man (appointed government) has the power of death – Though no man should be a murderer, mankind – in the sense of government ordained by God – must execute capital punishment upon the guilty. “Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.” (Genesis 9:6) Dare I say, it there was more capital punishment, perhaps there would be less murder.

“Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.” (Romans 13:1-5)

“Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.:” (1 Peter 2:13-14)

Even Jesus submitted to the Roman government in regards to capital punishment though He was an innocent man. John 19:10-11 “Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee? Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.”

 

 
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Posted by on March 24, 2013 in God's Truth

 

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Theology – The Doctrine of God-Part 3

III. His Moral Attributes – Attributes are characteristics revealed in personal interaction with mankind. Some of God’s moral attributes include:

A. Holiness – Holiness means “to be totally separated from sin and evil.” It is the perfection of God whereby He abhors that which is evil and demands purity. Because of God’s holiness, a sinful individual has no right to come into God’s presence. For this reason, God turned His back on His own Son when Jesus “became sin for us.” God is a Holy God – 1 Peter 1:16 “Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” This is His greatest attribute. All other attributes of God are subject to His holiness. It is this holiness that is announced perpetually and eternally in Heaven: “And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.” (Isaiah 6:3) “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)

B. Justice – God is a just God. He exists eternally as a Judge who will mete out judgment. A Judge must condemn the guilty or let the innocent go free. As a Judge, God is remunerative (rewarding) and retributive (chastening). Since God cannot act contrary to His laws, our crimes must be punished. A person must suffer for his own sin or accept God’s plan of redemption.

God is the one who has been wronged by sin, therefore He is the only one who can determine how restitution is made. God has determined that restitution be made by the shedding of innocent blood. Only Christ’s blood is innocent, so Christ died for our sins and shed His blood to satisfy the Judge of all the universe. A person who believes on God’s Son, Jesus, Christ, as their personal Saviour is then pardoned and justified from all of their sins as the Judge considers the payment to have been paid in full by His Son Jesus Christ. “And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.” (Acts 13:39)

C. Righteousness – The attribute that causes God to always do right. “That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” (Genesis 18:25) This wonderful attribute of God guarantees that He will always keep His promises. It would be wrong for Him to not keep His word. This is why the believer gains so much assurance by holding to the promises of God – God is righteous and will keep His Word. “O Lord, according to all thy righteousness, I beseech thee, let thine anger and thy fury be turned away from thy city Jerusalem, thy holy mountain: because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and thy people are become a reproach to all that are about us.” (Daniel 9:16) Because He is a righteous God, it is impossible for Him to do wrong or to lie.

D. Love – The world uses the word “love” so flippantly that many believers have a very shallow view of Biblical love. Love is concern for the welfare of another even above one’s own welfare. The world’s idea of love is usually lust or, at best, selfishness. Lust is getting. Love is giving. Lust cannot wait to get. Love cannot wait to give.

As believers, we are commanded to love other believers, our enemies, and our Lord. We are to show our love for God by keeping His commandments and for others by sacrificing our lives for them. This is the type of love that was showed to us by God. “Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” (1 John 3:16) “And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.” (1 John 4:16)

E. Mercy – Mercy is God’s compassion in not giving the sinner what he deserves. “Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy.” (Micah 7:18) “Mercy” comes from a Hebrew word that is the same root as the word for a mother’s womb. It is caring for someone who is completely helpless. God cares for helpless people by His moral attribute of mercy.

F. Grace – Grace is the unmerited goodness and love of God for those who have forfeited it. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:” (Ephesians 2:8) Whereas mercy is God not giving us what we deserve, grace is God giving us what we do not deserve. Grace is when God gives us His enablement and power to become what we ought to be, to go where we ought to go, and to do what we ought to do. Grace is God giving us all of His resources at every experience we have. “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16)

G. Truth – God is a God of truth. He hates every lie. “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?” (Numbers 23:19) “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” (John 17:17) “That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us:” (Hebrews 6:18)

These are just some of God’s moral attributes that He has revealed to us through His Word.

He's got the whole world ................

He’s got the whole world ……………. (Photo credit: ClaraDon)

 
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Posted by on January 20, 2013 in Eschatology

 

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