Thursday, October 31, 2013


Let me begin by saying that I am not a prophet, but I do know there will come a time in every life, when we will stand before the Lord and give an account (Rom. 14:10-12; Heb. 9:27)!  Possibly, some of you reading this have already come to that point in your lives, and in reality, actually have less than twenty-four hours.  I believe these four things should be our priority until our last breath:

1.  WE NEED TO MAKE SURE WE ARE BORN AGAIN:  "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness..." (Mt. 6:33)!  If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, that is absolutely the most important thing you need to do, for without Christ as your Lord, you are doomed to hell!  The Word of God says, "He that believeth on Him (Jesus) 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" (Jn. 3:3-8, 18; Acts 4:12)!

2.  WE NEED TO BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT:  If you are absolutely certain you are a born again believer, the second most important thing you need to do, is to make sure you have confessed your sins (1 Jn. 1:9), and that you are filled with the Holy Spirit (Jn. 14:17; Eph. 3:19; 5:18; Phil. 1:11; etc.).  Some believers do not realize that, though God filled them with His Spirit at the moment of their new birth (Jn. 3:3-8; Acts 4:31; 9:17; etc.), because we still sin, we "leak."  That is why the Apostle Paul told born again believers they need to "be filled" in Ephesians 5:18.  The only time a believer is filled with the Spirit, is when he is righteous, and the confession of our sins reestablishes the filling of the Spirit; otherwise, we would not be cleansed of all unrighteousness (1 Jn. 1:9).

3.  WE NEED TO BE RIGHT WITH THE BRETHREN:  Even though we are saved, we still sin, and in so doing, we often offend our brethren.  The Word says that before we "approach God," we need to make things right with others; it says, "Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift" (Mt. 5:23-24).

4.  WE NEED TO SHARE THE GOSPEL TO THE LOST:  Proverbs 11:30 says, "The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise."  Believers are ambassadors for Christ to the lost world (2 Cor. 5:20)!  We are to share the Gospel (1 Cor. 15:1-4), for IT is the power of God that wins lost souls (Rom. 1:16)!  If you truly love your family, friends, and even your enemies, you will want them to accept Christ and be saved!

Is this your last twenty-four hours?  Does it really matter?  Be faithful!


Wednesday, October 30, 2013


In John 17:20-24, Jesus prayed saying:

V. 20 - "Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall BELIEVE on Me through their Word (Who?  Us! - compare Rom. 10:17);

V. 21 - that they all may be one; as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us:  that the world may BELIEVE that Thou hast sent Me (Why? Because belief in Him is what saves - compare Acts 16:31-34).
V. 22 - And the glory which Thou gavest Me I have given them; that they may be one, even as We are one (What?  His likeness! - compare 1 Jn. 3:2):
V. 23 - I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may KNOW that Thou has sent Me, and hast loved them, as Thou hast loved Me (How much?  compare Jn. 3:16).
Verse 24 - Father, I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am; that they may BEHOLD My glory, which Thou hast given Me: for Thou lovedst Me before the foundation of the world" (When? - compare Eph. 1:4)!

Here are twelve things all born again believers know:
*  All creation groans, longing for Christ's return (Rom. 8:22).
*  All things are designed for our benefit (Rom. 8:28).
*  All believers will be resurrected to life (2 Cor. 5:1).
*  All who persecute us will receive God's justice (Heb. 10:30).
*  All who are saved want Jesus to be our Lord (1 Jn. 2:3).
*  All of us know the end time is near (1 Jn. 2:18).
*  All born again believers will, one day, be like Him (1 Jn. 3:2).
*  All born again believers are indwelt by the Spirit (1 Jn. 3:24).
*  All who love God want to obey Him (1 Jn. 5:2).
*  All believers know God hears our prayers (1 Jn. 5:15).
*  All born again believers know we belong to God (1 Jn. 5:19).
*  All born again believers know God's Son has already come (1 Jn. 5:20).

"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part;
but then shall I know even as also I am known" (1 Cor. 13:12)!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


As taught by our Lord
(John 14:1-3)
As taught by Paul
(1 Thessalonians 4:13-18)
Comforting Words
"Let not your heart be troubled." "Comfort one another with these words."
The Necessity of Personal Faith
"Ye believe in God, believe also in Me." "If we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him."
We Can Take Christ at His Word
"If it were not so, I would have told you." "This we say unto you by the Word of the Lord."
The Promise of His Coming
"I will come again." "The Lord Himself shall descend from Heaven."
The Remarkable Removal from Earth
"and receive you unto Myself." "We...shall be caught meet the Lord in the air."
Forever Present with the Lord
"That where I am, there ye may be also." "and so shall we ever be with the Lord."

Monday, October 28, 2013


I have written many posts in my blog about the difference between a person being religious, and a person being a child of God by faith alone.  I have pointed out that all religions are based upon works, and that if salvation is by works, then it cannot be by grace (a free gift).  However, since I do not tend to believe everything others write, I have to believe many reading this will doubt my view.  So today, I want to present three passages of the many upon which my teaching is based.

"And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?  And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.  And they spoke unto him the Word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house.  And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.  And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house" (Acts 16:30-34).

"What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found?  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.  Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works,  Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered" (Rom. 4:1-7).

"But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ (by grace ye are saved); and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:  that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.  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.  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them" (Eph. 2:4-10).

Religion is awful; the Father/child relationship is awesome!

Sunday, October 27, 2013


Based upon Ezekiel 14:14 and James 5:11, few would challenge that Job was a historical person.  According to some Bible scholars, the Book of Job is the oldest book in the Bible.  One example is Charles Ryrie, who gives four reasons he believes so:
*  The length of Job's life - Job 42:16.
*  Job's wealth was measured in livestock - Job 1:3.
*  Like Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, Job was the priest of his family - Job. 1:5.
*  There is no mention of the Nation of Israel, or the Mosaic Law.

Assuming the writing Job predated that of the Pentateuch, the Books of Moses, it amazes me that Job's "friends" knew so much about God!  Eliphaz (Job 4:1-5:27; 15:1-35; 22:1-30), Bibdad (Job 8:1-22; 18:1-21; 25:1-6), Zophar (Job 11:1-20; 20:1-29), and Elihu (Job 32:1-33:33; 34:1-37; 35:1-16; 36:1-37:24), had great knowledge of God and His mighty works.  And as far as I know, the only error they made was believing the attacks of Satan on Job, were the result of God punishing him for his sin.  What they failed to comprehend, was that Job's children, his possessions, and his health were all given to him by the grace of God, and without God, the chaos that he was experiencing would have been his lot continuously!  Job did.  He said, "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD" (Job 1:21).

What we can learn from his "biography," is that all we have is a gift from God, and that if we actually got what we deserved, we, too, would be in Job's condition, or God forbid, worse!  Notice I said earlier, that Job's family, his riches, and even his health, were by the grace of God (Job 10:12); he did not merit any of those things, and neither do we.

Another person who gets a "bad rep" in Job's life, is his wife.  First of all, that we are not even given her name, says a lot about Job's culture.  She is mentioned three times in the book (Job 2:9; 19:17; 31:10).  Her infamous statement, "Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die" (Job 2:9), has marked her as an evil person, more evil perhaps than his four "friends."  However, most do not realize that apart from the attack on Job's health, she experienced the same things as Job!  She, too, lost her children, her home, her possessions, and her position in society!  His wife got tired of hearing her husband say, "Woe is me!"; she also needed some pity!

Husbands/wives, next time you complain, make sure your spouse is not suffering, as well!

Saturday, October 26, 2013


Have you ever been wronged by someone, and thought to yourself that no matter what he says or does, I will never forgive him?  For some, they never do, but for most of us, "time heals all wounds."  Time has a way of putting events or conversations into perspective.  Eventually, we begin to compare our relationship with the person as a whole, rather than by the one offence.  Our heart softens, and for most of us, we forgive.  The conversation you and I call "making up," is what the Bible calls "reconciliation."

"Reconciliation" always requires the party who has been wronged, to be merciful toward the offender, regardless of whether or not he or she is remorseful.  Just between us, it is far easier to reconcile with someone who is repentant.  But it takes a "big person" to reconcile with someone who refuses to admit he is wrong.  In fact, I do not believe any of us are that benevolent.  And yet, God is!

The Word says, "But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Rom. 5:8)!  Yes, even though we stubbornly reject God's view of our rebellion (sinful way of life), He sent His only begotten Son to make it possible for reconciliation!  God had said, "The wages of sin is death" (Rom. 6:23), but He provided a Substitute to die in our place!  Jesus, "In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins" (Col. 1:14).

Reconciliation requires "Propitiation":  a word that, while uncommon, speaks to the Offended showing mercy on the offender.  "Propitiation" is what it takes to make things right.  In other words, God determined it required a human life in order to "make things right between a sinner and Himself (Rom. 3:23; 6:23).  "Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins" (1 Jn. 4:10). 

"For it became Him (the Father), for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the Captain of their salvation (Jesus) perfect through sufferings.  Wherefore in all things it behoved Him (Jesus) to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God (the Father), to make reconciliation for the sins of the people" (Heb. 2:10, 17). 

Jesus died to reconcile you and me with His Father; you are forgiven IN Christ!

Friday, October 25, 2013


"But what saith it?  The Word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the Word of faith, which we preach; that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.  For the Scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed.  For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon Him.  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved" (Rom. 10:8-13). 

While the name "Jesus" does not appear in the Old Testament, it does appear in 942 verses in the New Testament!  In fact, the complete phrase "the Lord Jesus Christ" appears in twenty-three verses:
(Acts 11:17; 15:11; 16:31; 28:31; Rom. 1:7; 13:4; 1 Cor. 1:3; 16:22; 2 Cor. 13:14; Eph. 1:2; 6:23; Phil. 3:20; Col. 1:2; 1 Thes. 1:1; 2 Thes. 1:1, 2, 12; 1 Tim. 5:21; 2 Tim. 4:22; Tts. 1:4; Phile. 1:3; and Jam. 1:1)!

To me, it is ironic that the word "Saviour" (Savior) appears only thirty-nine times in the entire Bible:  thirteen times in the Old Testament, and twenty-six times in the New Testament, and yet, churches declare that one is saved by calling Jesus his Savior.  The word "LORD," one the other hand, appears in 6,011 verses in the Old Testament, while the word "Lord" appears in 657 verses in the New Testament.

The Bible is clear that the Father raised His only begotten Son from the grave, for the purpose of ruling.  Paul wrote, "For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that He might be Lord both of the dead and living" (Rom. 14:9).  In another place, Paul wrote, "That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" (Phil. 2:10-11).

When we accept Jesus as our Lord, we are saved by our Savior!  


Thursday, October 24, 2013


I think it strange that we, as mere human beings, delude ourselves into thinking we know when someone else is guilty of a great sin, such as murder.  Over the years, there have been several cases where people have been absolutely certain of someone's guilt, and yet a jury finds the accused not guilty because of a lack of evidence which could remove all reasonable doubt.  Or, in other cases, a jury finds a defendant guilty based upon circumstantial evidence.  Examples are O.J. Simpson, Casey Anthony, Bruno Hauptmann, George Zimmerman, and now, David Camm. 

Regardless of the outcome, for many, tempers flare, while others celebrate the verdict.  One has to wonder how folks can be so sure they know the truth.  Especially when one takes into consideration that, we as individuals, do not even know the truth about our own selves!  The Word of God says, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked:  who can know it" (Jer. 17:9)? 

Deception is the work of Satan, and he uses persecution and temptations to draw mankind away from the Lord.  Many men allow Satan to persuade them that God's Word is not true (Mt. 13:19); others crumble under persecution, and having no solid foundation for his faith, doubt its truth (Mt. 13:20-21); still others can be enticed by the world's pleasures, and choose to ignore God's will (Mt. 13:22).

Another way man deceives himself is to think he knows God's will without verifying it from the Scriptures.  "There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death" (Prov. 14:12; 16:25)!  We call those alternative ways, religion!  Men have always been religious, but Jesus said the end times would be just as the days of Noah, and God had this to say about those days:  "...the thoughts of (man's) heart was only evil continually" (Gen. 6:5). 

You can be absolutely sure that God will judge all men, and His judgments are 100% true:  He said, "I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings" (Jer. 17:10).

Judge yourself:  Are you a born again believer in Jesus Christ?  Look at the "fruit" in your life; is it rotten, fit only for hell's fire (Gal. 5:19-21), or is it "good and nourishing" (Gal. 5:22-23)?


Wednesday, October 23, 2013


On September 19, 2013, six months into his papacy, Pope Francis  sat down for an interview with the Rev. Antonio Spadaro, editor in chief of La Civilta Cattolica, an Italian Jesuit journal whose content is approved by the Vatican.  The publication quoted the Pope as saying, "the church has grown 'obsessed' with abortion, gay marriage and contraception," and that he had chosen not to talk about those issues despite an expected outcry from conservative and traditional Catholics, many of whom have spent their lives opposing them.

On October 1, 2013, Pope Francis was interviewed by atheist editor Eugenio Scalfari of La Repubblica, on topics such as the Vatican bureaucracy, careerist priests, the moment of his election, and his favorite saints.  In it, Scalfari quotes the Pope as saying, "Each of us has a vision of good and of evil. We have to encourage people to move towards what they think is Good. … Everyone has his own idea of good and evil and must choose to follow the good and fight evil as he conceives them. That would be enough to make the world a better place.  And on one's salvation, Pope Francis said, "Agape, the love of each one of us for the other, from the closest to the furthest, is in fact the only way that Jesus has given us to find the way of salvation and of the Beatitudes."

The Bible says that "The way of a fool is right in his own eyes...." (Prov. 12:15).  And again, "Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts" (Prov. 21:2).  Jeremiah 17:9 says, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked:  who can know it?"  Romans 3:10 says, "As it is written, there is none righteous, no, not one." 

On the subject of one's salvation, the Word of God says, "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" (Eph. 2:8-9).  Again, in Acts 16:31, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved...."  And, of course, there is the most familiar verse of all:  "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." (Jn. 3:16)!   

We, as light, are to expose the evil darkness of abortion and homosexuality!
Salvation requires faith in Jesus, so atheists will not go to heaven!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


In yesterday's post, I wrote about the five temples which will have existed one this earth, before the Lord replaces this corrupt universe with the new heaven and new earth (Rev. 21:1).  Today, I want to focus upon the "temple" which now exists:  the Church.  During this, the Church Age, Jesus is building a "temple" in which the Holy Spirit now dwells (2 Cor. 6:16). 

You might say that this "temple" in still under construction.  Jesus, Himself, laid the "foundation," or should I say, Jesus Christ IS the "foundation":  Isa. 28:16; Mt. 16:18; Lk. 6:48; 1 Cor. 3:11.  This fact is also clear by comparing the following passages:  "Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel" (Ex. 17:6); with "And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ" (1 Cor. 10:4)!
The Apostle Paul wrote:  "Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens 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 Cornerstone; 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" (Eph. 2:19-22).

So, what part do you and I play in this "building project?"  The answer is, we are to build up each other in love!  In the King James Version, the words "edify," "edifieth," and "edified," are all translated from the Greek οἰκοδομέω (oikodomeō), which means "to build."  "Edifying" and "edification" are translated from the Greek οἰκοδομή (oikodomē), which means "building."  Both Greek words are formed from two root words, οἶκος (oikos), which means "house," and δῶμα (dōma), which means "the top."

With the exception of Luke's use of οἰκοδομέω (oikodomeō) in Acts 9:31, it and οἰκοδομή (oikodomē) were exclusively used by the Apostle Paul in eighteen verses of his epistles.  Oἰκοδομέω also appears in six verses:  Rom. 14:19; 1 Cor. 8:1; 10:23; 14:4, 17; and 1 Thes. 5:11.  Oἰκοδομή appears in twelve verses:  Rom. 15:2; 1 Cor. 14:3, 5, 12, 26; 2 Cor. 10:8; 12:19; 13:10; Eph. 4:12, 16, 29; and 1 Tim. 1:4.
Do your words "build up," or do they "demolish" the brethren?

Monday, October 21, 2013


David Wood and Tim LaHaye worked together to produce The Prophecy Study Bible, in which there is a chart entitled "Israel's Four Temples," but in reality, it actually presents five Temples.  The four Temples include:
  *  Solomon's Temple (1 Kgs. 5 - 8), which was later destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar's army, was for nearly four hundred years, the home of the Ark of the Covenant, where God revealed His Shechinah Glory (His presence).
*  "Zerubbabel's & Herod's Temple" was originally built by Ezra, with the financial support of Zerubbabel, the governor of the providence of Judah, under Cyrus, King of Persia (Ezra 3:7 - 6:18).  After the Greeks defeated the Persians, it was desecrated by Antiochus Epiphanes.  The Jewish Feast of Chanukah celebrates the cleansing of "Zerubbabel's Temple."  Over one hundred years later, King Herod the Great enlarged the Temple, which Daniel prophesied would be destroyed (Dan. 9:26), and Jesus prophesied would be destroyed following His Ascension (Mt. 24:1-2). 
*  Antichrist's Temple has to be built soon, in order for him to desecrate it (Dan. 9:27; 11:31; 12:11; Mt. 24:15; Rev. 13:6; etc.). 
*  Christ's Temple will exist during His Millennial Reign, and once again, God's Shechinah Glory will be present (Ezek. 40:1 - 43:27; Isa. 2:2-3; 56:7; etc.).

But, The Prophecy Study Bible shows from God's Word, that there is a fifth Temple, the one that exists today; the one which exists between the destruction of Herod's Temple and the time of the Antichrist's Temple: the Body of Christ is the Temple of God!  The Apostle Paul wrote:
*  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 again in 6:19, Paul wrote, "What? know ye not that your body is the Temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?"
 *  2 Corinthians 6:16 - "And what agreement hath the Temple of God with idols? For ye are the Temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people."
*  Ephesians 2:20-22 - "And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; n 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."

There will be no Temple of the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:22) -
". . . for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it."


Sunday, October 20, 2013


Recently, a stenographer for the U.S. House of Representatives, Diane Reidy, left her assigned seat and went to the microphone to warn the members of the House that they were mocking God by their vote.  Her actions have been described as "bizarre," "a nervous breakdown," "a political rant," etc., but few have been willing to agree with her husband that she was prophesying for God.  And that is understandable; few political and religious leaders accepted the prophecies of the Old and New Testament prophets, and the majority even rejected the prophecies of the Son of God:  they crucified Him!

Someone told me that God does not use the ranting of His children to warn the religious leaders, the politicians, or the population, of God's pending judgment.  I recall that God used a murderer (Moses), an adulterer (David), a harlot (Rahab), a sex-addict (Solomon), a liar (Abraham), a burning bush, and a donkey, to proclaim His truth!  I am sure those who saw Noah building a huge ship on dry land, thought he was "nuts" when he warned them of their pending doom.  Do we really want to limit God's choice on how He communicates with His creation? 

That same kind of thinking was, and still is, applied to whom the Lord can and will use to proclaim His Gospel.  The disciples cringed when Jesus chose Matthew, a hated tax-collector, to be one of His twelve.  And what do you suppose they thought of His ignoring their choice of Matthias as a replacement for Judas, and His choosing Saul of Tarsus instead?  Not only did Saul (the Apostle Paul) become an Apostle, he was used of God to write nearly half of the New Testament!  Matthias was never heard of again in God's Word.

Finally, I can testify that God uses the scum of the earth to proclaim His Word in ministries, and in individual situations.  In the middle 1980's, being unemployed, I decided to sit in on a huge Pastor's Conference at Graceland Baptist Church in New Albany, Indiana.  I wanted to hear the preaching.  After about fifteen minutes of listening to some guy mock those who did not believe as he did about the gifts of the Spirit, I began to pray for him to stop ridiculing my brothers and sisters.  Before I knew what happened, he had turned to me, and was asking if I had something to say.  I, the only one there not wearing a suit, and totally out of his line of vision, was standing!  I do not know what I said, but the speaker was brushed aside by the leader of the conference, and he said, "I accept what you have said as from the Lord, and I repent!"  The audience of over 500 went from laughing at his "jokes," to kneeling at the alter, audibly moaning and sobbing over their sin.  The He fell to the floor and wept.  If God can use me, a bush, or a donkey, what makes us think He wasn't using Diane Reily?     

Saturday, October 19, 2013


From the days of Adam until the time of Jesus, a period of about four thousand years, when a person died, his soul went down into a place called, in the Hebrew, שְׁאוֹל (shĕ'owl), or "the place of the dead" (Ps. 55:15; Ezek. 31:15-16; Amos 9:2).  Ezekiel used the Hebrew תַּחְתִּי (tachtiy), which is translated "nether parts of the earth," five times in describing שְׁאוֹל (shĕ'owl) (Ezek. 31:14, 16, 18; 32:18, 24).  It means "the lower most part" of something, such as the base of a mountain (Ex. 19:17).  As we all know, the lowest part of the planet is the center of its core.  That reminds me of the joke that asks, "How far into the woods can a man travel?"  The answer is exactly half way, because if he continues, he is leaving the woods.  The same is true for שְׁאוֹל (shĕ'owl).   

According to the Lord's description in Luke 16:19-31, "the place of the dead" was divided into two sections:  one section was identified as "hell," and the other section was called "Abraham's Bosom":  "And in hell (the rich man) lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom" (Lk. 16:23).  It is obvious from the passage that "hell" was a place of suffering in a flame (v. 24), while "Abraham's Bosom" was a place of comfort (v. 25).  In fact, the New Testament refers to "Abraham's Bosom" as "Paradise."  Jesus, speaking to the thief on the cross, said, "Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with Me in paradise" (Lk. 23:43).  Since Jesus died and was buried (1 Cor. 15:3-4), and was "in the grave" for "three days and three nights" (Mt. 12:40), that means Jesus and the thief spent three days and three nights together in "Abraham's Bosom."

Today, born again believers no longer go down unto "Abraham's Bosom" when they die.  The Word tells us that believers in Christ are immediately "present with the Lord" upon their death (2 Cor. 5:8)!  Because we know Jesus is now in heaven (Ps. 68:18; Prov. 30:4; Jn. 3:13; 20:17; Acts 2:34; Eph. 4:8-10; etc.), we go up to be with Him!  This is confirmed by the fact that the Apostle Paul describes "a man" as having been "caught up into paradise" (2 Cor. 12:4).  And Jesus affirms the location of paradise today:  "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" (Rev. 2:7)!

There is but one Way, one Door, into God's presence:  Jesus Christ, our risen LORD!     

Friday, October 18, 2013


Recently, some well-known, much-loved, sound Bible teachers have made the statement that a person can be saved during the Tribulation, even after receiving the "mark of the Beast."  Their reasoning is based upon the idea that there is only one unpardonable sin, which is the rejection of the Holy Spirit's conviction that Jesus is Israel's Christ (Mt. 12:22-32).  Therefore, to them, accepting the "mark of the Beast" is not any worse than someone being a Buddhist, a Muslim, or an atheist; they apparently see worshipping the Antichrist as being equal to worshipping any other false god.  So, I would like to look at what the Scriptures have to say about one being "marked."

Genesis 4:15 tells of God "marking" Cain, and while no one knows whether or not the "mark" was on Cain's forehead or hand, we do know men would recognize it as God's mark, and know they were not to harm him.   

In Ezekiel 9:4, we read of God's protecting "mark" was to be placed on those who were grieved over the sin that was occurring in Jerusalem.  

Another word for "marked" is "sealed."  The Word says that Jesus was "sealed" (Jn. 6:27); and born again believers are sealed (2 Cor. 1:22; Eph. 1:13; 4:30).  Since we are "sealed" until the day of our redemption, "sealing" "marks" us as God's property!

And in Revelation 9:4-5, the "mark" was on all of the foreheads of those who belonged to God, and they could not be harmed by the "locusts."  So, by the time the "second Beast" begins "marking" those who worshipped the "first Beast's image," all of God's children had been "marked."

Notice what Revelation 7:3 says concerning the 144,000 of the tribes of Israel:  "Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads."  By the time Revelation 13 comes along, with the Satan-possessed Son of Perdition, and the False Prophet with his "mark," I believe that all of God's children will already have been "marked" by God!  The Deceiver will not be able to "mark" those whom he cannot deceive (Mt. 24:24; Mk. 13:22).

Every man will be sealed; some by God, but unfortunately, most by the Antichrist!

Thursday, October 17, 2013


I ended part one with a quote from, that described the scientific marvel, the micro-chip, as a human tracking device.  While it is true that such a device, planted in the back of the hand or in the forehead (Rev. 13:16), could be used to identify and track the whereabouts of individuals, it would require a person to be close enough to be "scanned."  Unless, of course, it could be made possible by the government using the existing "phone towers" to triangulate a signal unique to an individual.  However, if that were the case, there would be no need to plant the device in the hand or forehead; it could be planted anywhere on the person.

Many believe the "mark of the beast" will be a computer bar-code tattooed on the forehead or hand.  It would be visible for quick identification, and for scanning.  Using a bar-code would be possible, since the standard bar-code contains twelve numbers; that would mean there would be 100 billion numbers available, which would be no problem for there are only about seven billion people on our planet.  But with the bar-code, unless the person bought or sold something, it would be difficult to track the location of that individual.  Actually, the Scripture says nothing about tracking their location, but only that buying and selling would be restricted (Rev. 13:17).

While a combination of a bar-code and a micro-chip would enable the ultimate "control freak" to locate an individual, and limit his or her ability to buy or sell, proponents of both forms of identification appear to be ignoring what the Word says about the "mark of the beast."  John wrote:  "And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, OR the name of the beast, OR the number of his name.  Here is wisdom.  Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six" (Rev. 13:17-18 - emphasis mine).  That means it cannot be a bar-code for scanning.  Neither can it be a micro-chip. 

What it could be, is a tattoo OR brand of his religious symbol (perhaps a crescent moon and star), OR his actual name, OR the number 666, OR his name represented by an alpha-numeric system that adds up to 666.  Because we can now identify people by eye scans (forehead), and by their finger prints (hand), a tattoo or brand would be all that was necessary to identify those who worshipped the Beast (Rev. 13:15; 14:11; 16:2; 19:20).

While we do not know what the mark is, we do know not to worship the Beast!           

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


The Book of Revelation was written approximately two thousand years ago, and throughout that time period, Bible experts have boldly declared that they knew what the "mark of the beast" was, and many have even declared they knew the identity of the Antichrist.  Ironically, for most of those twenty centuries, born again believers have been wrong!  That is not surprising, in that, the Book of Daniel tells us the information concerning these things would be sealed, or remain a mystery until the "last days" (Dan. 12:4, 9).  Of course, believers from the time of Christ's Ascension, believed they were living in the "last days" (Acts 1:7).  And, in a way, they were right.  The Church Age has lasted two thousand years, and to God, "a day is as a thousand years" (2 Pet. 3:8).

So what makes us, as Bible students in the twenty-first century, believe we have solved the mystery?  Well, first of all, Daniel's description of the "last days" included "many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased" (Dan. 12:4).  Today, it is possible to travel around the globe in an hour and a half (International Space Station), and computers have made an immeasurable amount of knowledge available with the single click of a button! 

In addition, the end of the Church Age is described as being one of apostasy, and is there anyone who doubts we are living in the Laodicean period of Church History (2 Thes. 2:3; 1 Tim. 4:1; 2 Tim. 3:1-2; 4:3-4; Rev. 3:14-22)? 

But perhaps the most telling of clues has to do with the scientific advances in computer micro-chips.
One source wrote,
"We can fully expect the new human tracking chips to be progressively integrated into our society over the next decade. Americans have already implanted the chips into one million of their pets. And what are we as citizens if not pets of the government? As such, we’ll be treated much the same way.  First they’ll start with voluntary programs for those on government sponsored healthcare plans. Membership will have its benefits, and those with the chip will be able to see their doctor quicker than the unchipped. This may even be expanded to include quicker security screenings at airports and other TSA checkpoints.  Then, the Department of Homeland Security will order tens of millions of chips to have on standby in case of a major disaster or emergency. In fact, the Israeli military did just that in October of 2011." (
To be continued 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013


"The four and twenty elders fall down before Him that sat on the throne, and worship Him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for Thou hast created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created" (Rev. 4:10-11).
Have you ever wondered why the elders before the Lord's throne are wearing crowns?  It is because they will have earned them.  They will have made a serious effort to have self-control.  Their certain hope in His return will have given them great joy.  They will have been made righteous in Christ.  They will have been faithful in shepherding God's flock.  And they will have loved God more than life itself.
Have you ever wondered why the elders will take off their crowns and cast them at the Lord's feet?  It is because, in reality, they will know they did not actually earn them.  It will have been the Holy Spirit, who graciously provides them with their ability, their joy, their righteousness, their desire to be faithful, and their comprehension of the glory that belongs to God alone!  As a result, they will simply be giving them back to the One who really deserves all honor!  
"And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things.  Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an INCORRUPTIBLE (CROWN)" (1 Cor. 9:25).

"For what is our hope, or joy, or CROWN OF REJOICING?  Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His coming?  For ye are our glory and joy" (1 Thes. 2:19-20).
"Henceforth there is laid up for me a CROWN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love His appearing" (2 Tim. 4:8).
"Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.  And when the Chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a CROWN OF GLORY that fadeth not away"  (1 Pet. 5:2-4).
"Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a CROWN OF LIFE" (Rev. 2:10).

Monday, October 14, 2013


Whether it be an Old Testament vision of God's throne room (Isaiah 6:1): a small gathering on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8); an Apostle in the Spirit on the Lord's day (Revelation 1:10); or a day when every eye will see Him (Revelation 1:7); Jesus will appear as He was before creation (John 17:5), and as He has appeared ever since His Ascension (Acts 1:9):  in all the Glory that belongs to our Great God and Savior, Jesus, the Christ (Titus 3:4)!

Isaiah 6:1  "In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and His train filled the temple."

Matthew 17:2  "And (He) was transfigured before them: and His face did shine as the sun, and His raiment was white as the light."

Revelation 1:13-16  "And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.  His head and His hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and His eyes were as a flame of fire; and His feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and His voice as the sound of many waters.  And He had in His right hand seven stars: and out of His mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and His countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength."

Revelation 19:11-16  "And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He doth judge and make war.  His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns; and He had a name written, that no man knew, but He Himself.  And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and His name is called The Word of God.  And the armies which were in heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.  And out of His mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations: and He shall rule them with a rod of iron: and He treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.  And He hath on His vesture and on His thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS."

Sculptors and painters are incapable of rendering anything close to His glory!

Sunday, October 13, 2013


1 Thes. 5:9  "For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ."

Rev. 3:10  "Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth."

Jn. 14:1-3  "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also."

1Thes. 4:16-17  "For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God:  and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

Gen. 7:15-17  "And they went in unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein [is] the breath of life.  And they that went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him: and the LORD shut him in.  And the flood was forty days upon the earth; and the waters increased, and bare up the ark, and it was lift up above the earth."

Lk. 17:26-27  "And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.  They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all."

Gen. 19:29-30  "And it came to pass, when God destroyed the cities of the plain, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when he overthrew the cities in the which Lot dwelt.  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.  
Lk. 17:28-30  "Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; but the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.  Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed."  

Saturday, October 12, 2013


A Baptist Pastor, a Jewish Rabbi, and a Catholic Priest walk into a bar. . . 
*  The bartender says, "This has got to be a joke!"
*  All three were blind and they collided with the building.
*  The Priest wanted a drink, the Rabbi wanted buy the bar, and the Pastor was there to remind his flock to save enough money for Sunday's offering.

Pope Francis has lived his life as an example of humility, from the day he entered into the priesthood of the Roman Catholic Church, until this very day as the leader of the world's largest religion.  His compassion for the poor, and his ecumenical spirit have defined His papacy.  However, his statements that atheists, agnostics, homosexuals, and abortionists can go to heaven, have made many Roman Catholics nervous.  For hundreds of years, the Roman Catholic Church has been the standard bearer for Jesus being the only way to heaven, for the sanctity of human life, and that homosexuality is an abomination to God! 

Billy Graham proclaimed the Gospel of Jesus Christ, that is, the love of God which moved Him to send His only begotten Son to die for the sins of mankind; and as a result, He was rejected and crucified, He was buried, and that He raised Jesus from the grave, according to the Scriptures (Jn. 3:16; 1 Cor. 15:1-4).  But Billy Graham erred by encouraging Pastors of ALL local churches to come be counselors at the Crusades (a name which is offensive to Muslims).  That means many of the converts to Christ were "gobbled-up" by Pastors who were wolves in sheep's clothing.  He obeyed half of the Great Commission by proclaiming the Gospel, but he basically ignored the second half which says:  "teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you."

The Dalai Lama, a Tibetan Buddhist, like his predecessors before him, has been a spokesman for peace in the world.  He has traveled extensively proclaiming a doctrine of peace through unity.  Of course, in order for there to be unity, all religions need to eliminate those doctrines and traditions which are not in harmony with all other faiths.  He, like the Pope, shares a common philosophy:
"For those who may not find happiness to exercise religious faith, it's okay to remain a radical atheist, it's absolutely an individual right, but the important thing is with a compassionate heart - then no problem."

The Scripture says that Jesus is the one and only way to heaven (Jn. 14:6).
The Scripture says that by faith in Him, one has eternal life (Jn. 3:15-17). 
It also says, "Let God be true, but every man a liar" (Rom. 3:4)!

Friday, October 11, 2013


There are two kinds of traditions:  those that are worth keeping, and those that need to be forgotten.  Tradition is the handing down of statements, beliefs, legends, customs, etc., from generation to generation, especially by word of mouth or by practice.  

Religion is totally founded upon traditions.  As a Christian, one studies the Old Testament hoping to understand the Jewish traditions upon which Christianity is based.  When we know how and why the Jews did things, it helps us understand why the Apostles (all former Jews by the way) behaved and taught as they did.  

God used a parabolic vision to teach Peter that some of his Jewish traditions were no longer valid for the Church.  In Acts 10, Peter was presented with new truth that the dietary laws of Israel, no longer applied to the Church (v. 1-17).  Not only did they no longer apply, the Church was to be made up of both Jews and Gentiles (v. 18-48).  According to, this occurred in A.D. 39.

The same source dates Acts 15 as being in A.D. 48.  In Acts 15:1-29, Luke describes a debate over the requirements for Gentiles to become members of the Church.  Some of those who were formerly Jews, had insisted that the tradition of circumcising males in order for them to be acceptable converts to the Jewish faith, be applied to Gentiles wanting to be members of the Church.  That means nearly a decade passed before the leaders of the Church came to an agreement that Gentiles need not "become Jews" before their profession of faith in Christ would be accepted.

One tradition I would like to see changed is that of celebrating Christ's Resurrection on Easter Sunday.  Because the Jewish Feasts of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and First Fruits are types or pictures of the Lord's death, burial, and resurrection, I would like the Church to celebrate His Resurrection on the day Israel celebrates the Feast of First Fruits.  But, based upon the hold tradition has on religious people, I do not suppose I will ever see that become a new tradition.

Scriptural traditions need to remain; man's traditions are always suspect!
(Matthew 15:2-9; Galatians 1:14; Colossians 2:8; 1 Peter 1:18)



Thursday, October 10, 2013


The word, "overcome," in some form, appears in eight verses in the Book of Revelation.  Perry Stone mentioned that he thought the first seven are not only related to the victory of the faithful in the seven churches, but that they may also be an overview of human history. 

*  Ephesus - In the Garden of Eden - "eat of the tree of life" (Rev. 2:7).
*  Smyrna - After the Fall - "shall not be hurt of the second death" (Rev. 2:11).
*  Pergamum - Israel in the wilderness - "eat of the hidden manna" (Rev. 2:17).
*  Thyatira - The Millennium - "power over the nations" (Rev. 2:26).
*  Sardis - The Great White Throne Judgment - "clothed in white raiment" (Rev. 3:5).
*  Philadelphia - The New Jerusalem - "a pillar in the temple of My God" (Rev. 3:12).
*  Laodicea - The New Jerusalem - "sit with Me on My throne" (Rev. 3:21).

The eighth time the Apostle John used the word, he sort of defined what it means to be an "overcomer," by contrasting it with what it is not.  He wrote: 
"He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be My son.  But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death" (Rev. 21:7-8).
In John's first epistle, he defined an "overcomer" this way: 
"For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.  Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?" (1 Jn. 5:4-5).
When we look at the biblical definition from both a positive and a negative perspective, we could say that a born again believer (Jn. 3:3-8; 1 Pet. 1:23), by his or her faith in Jesus Christ, the crucified, buried, resurrected, and ascended Son of God (Acts 1:9; 1 Cor. 15:3-4), has overcome the world, the flesh, and the devil (1 Jn. 2:16).

We are overcomers when we are in Christ!   

Wednesday, October 9, 2013


"John to the seven churches which are in Asia
["unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea" - Rev. 1:11]:
Grace be unto you, and peace, from Him which IS, and which WAS, and which IS TO COME ["The eternal God is thy refuge . . . " - Deut. 33:27; "Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love Me, he will keep My words: and My Father will love him, and We will come unto him, and make Our abode with him" - Jn. 14:23];
and from the seven Spirits which are before His throne
["And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon Him, the Spirit of Wisdom and (the Spirit of)Understanding, the Spirit of Counsel and (the Spirit of) Might, the Spirit of Knowledge and of the (Spirit of) Fear of the LORD" - Isa. 11:2];
and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness,
["And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True . . . " - Rev. 19:11].
and the first begotten of the dead
["But every man in his own order: Christ the first fruits . . . " - 1 Cor. 15:23],
and the Prince of the kings of the earth
["For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given . . . The Prince of Peace" - Isa. 9:6].
Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood
["In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins" - Col. 1:14],
And hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father
["And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth" - Rev. 5:10];
to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever.  Amen"
["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" - Eph. 2:8-9]!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


I can think of three things God cannot do: 

*  God cannot lie (Num. 23:19; 1 Sam. 15:29; Titus 1:2; Heb. 6:18; etc.)!
*  God cannot change (Ps. 102:27; Mal. 3:6; Heb. 6:17; Jam. 1:17; etc.)!
*  God cannot be surprised (Ps. 147:5; Isa. 40:26; 46:10; Jer. 1:5; Acts 2:23; 15:18; Rom. 8:29; 11:2; 1 Pet. 1:2; etc.)!

When we say that God is omniscient or "all-knowing," sometimes we forget that God is also eternal (Deut. 33:27; Ps. 90:2; Rom. 1:20; 1 Tim. 1:17; Heb. 9:14; etc.).  Because God has always existed, and because He is "all-knowing," it is impossible to surprise Him. 

It is also impossible to disappoint Him.  God knew exactly what we would think, what we would say, and what we would do, before He created us.  Evidence of that is clearly taught by Jesus Christ being called "the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world" (Jn. 1:29, 36).  God knew the sins for which His Son would die before the world was created (1 Pet. 1:18-20; Rev. 13:8; 17:8; etc.)! 

At the Feast of Wave Loaves (a.k.a. as the Feast of Weeks, and the Feast of Pentecost - Lev. 23:15-22), the people of Israel were to bring out of their habitations, two wave loaves, made of wheat and leaven (v. 17).  The Feast, although one of Israel's seven annual feasts, was also a picture of the beginning of the Church (Acts 2:1-47). 

Leaven is always a symbol of sin in the Bible (Mt. 16:6, 11-12; 1 Cor. 5:7-8; Gal. 5:9; etc.).  That is why it is strange that God told Israel, they were to purge out all leaven during the Spring Feasts (Lev. 23:4-8), but to include leaven in the two wave loaves.  He did so because He is Omniscient!  He did so because He foresaw that the Church would be made up of both saved Jews, and saved Gentiles (Gal. 3:28; Eph. 2:11-16; etc.).  He knew that, although they were saved, they would still sin (Rom. 7:15-25; 1 Jn. 1:8-10; etc.).  He saved us while we were sinners (Rom. 5:8) and He is in the process of cleansing us and making us into the image of His Son (Rom. 8:28-29; Phil. 1:6; 1 Jn. 3:2; etc.).
Believe it or not, we are His workmanship, and His work will be perfect!

Monday, October 7, 2013


It amazes me at how we, as born again believers, are so often in doubt of our salvation!  The very fact that there are so many doctrinal debates over the eternal security of the believer, indicates to me that there is a lack of solid Bible instruction on what it means to be saved!

The first contributor to the problem is that when someone first comes to faith in Christ and is born again, they do not see themselves as "babes" in need of the "milk" of the Word, and they are not taught it!  First Peter 2:2 says, "As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the Word, that ye may grow thereby."  Apparently, Pastors are far more interested in getting people saved, than they are in equipping them to reach the lost world for Christ, even though the Word of God says that is their job (Eph. 4:11-16).

A second contributor is that new Christians are not taught that even though they are saved by faith in Jesus Christ, they will still struggle with temptation due to their own sin nature.  Romans 7:14-25 describes the Apostle Paul's on-going battle between the Spirit who dwells within him, and his flesh.  Born again believers still sin!  That is why John wrote 1 John 1:8-10, and James wrote James 5:13-16.  And it is always when we, as believers, sin, that we begin to doubt our salvation! 

There may be more factors that contribute to one doubting his or her salvation, but the only other one I can think of, is a faulty interpretation of Bible passages that appear to teach one can lose his salvation.  The Bible does not contradict itself, so we are either sealed by the Holy Spirit unto the day of our redemption and are His (Eph. 1:13; 4:30), or we need to live a life of fear and legalism. 

The Word of God says, "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God" (1 Jn. 5:13).  It also says, "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is" (1 Jn. 3:2).
Do you believe that Jesus is the Christ of Israel?  If so, you are saved!



Sunday, October 6, 2013


If you have yet to believe the Gospel, the one and only message that has the power to save you (Rom. 1:16), the message that Jesus Christ died for your sin according to the Scriptures, that He was buried and rose again the third day according to the Scriptures (1 Cor. 15:3-4), then what I am about to write does not apply to you.  But, if you will proclaim Jesus as your Lord, and believe the Gospel right now, you will be saved (Rom. 10:9-10), that is, be born again by the Holy Spirit (Jn. 3:3-8).  If you are not a believer, and are therefore unwilling to allow Jesus Christ to be your Lord, don't bother reading the rest of this post.  It will be a total waste of your time.  You don't want to waste what little time you have left, reading the opinions of an old fanatic!

For those of you who have placed your trust in Jesus, and you long to please Him, to be Christ-like, I would like to share the one thing that has kept me from being both proud of how far I have come in the Lord, and from being depressed over how short that distance is when compared to how far I have yet to go.  It is a single verse of Scripture!  In Philippians 1:6, the Apostle Paul wrote, "Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ."  And what work is it that God has begun in me?  We find the answer in Paul's letter to the Romans:  "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.  For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren."  In other words, God has taken upon Himself the responsibility of making all those who have put their trust in Christ, like Him!

When I look at my life and realize how radically it has been changed from being an atheist, to being a person who loves the Lord, who looks forward to getting up and studying the Word of God, and to sharing both Him and His Word with others in this blog, I have a tendency to feel pretty good about myself.  That is my PRIDE taking credit for what the Lord has done in in me, in spite of me!  That is sin!

When I look at my life and realize how little I resemble Christ, the result is discouragement and depression.  That is also PRIDE, although it be my hurt pride, for it reveals the fact that I am forgetting it is God that got me as far along as I am, and it is to His glory that I am what I am!  So, it too is sin!

So what is the solution?  Thank the Lord for what He has done in you, and trust that He is able to complete the task. 

God never lies, and He promised to make me like Jesus!  (1 Jn. 3:2)! 


Saturday, October 5, 2013


Most Christian denominations have a tendency to view God as being exclusively their God, and that other groups, which claim to be His children, are wrong.  So, when they read the following passage, they see the pronouns as applying to just them.  "Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name.  Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread.  And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil:  For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen" (Mt. 6:9-13).

Ironically, when Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, He was speaking to them as Jews.  And the Bible they read, the Old Testament, clearly taught that the Israelites were considered God's children.  David is recorded as declaring it in 1 Chronicles 29:10:  "Wherefore David blessed the LORD before all the congregation: and David said, Blessed be Thou, LORD God of Israel our Father, for ever and ever."  Isaiah seems to be agreeing when he wrote, "For He said, Surely they are My people, children that will not lie: so He was their Saviour" (Isa. 63:8).

So does that mean Christians are not God's children?  Most definitely not!  God is recognized as the Father of born again believers repeatedly throughout the New Testament (Rom. 1:7; 1 Cor. 1:3; 2 Cor. 1:2; Gal. 1:4; Eph. 1:2; Phil. 1:2; Col. 1:2; 1 Thes. 1:1; 2 Thes. 1:1; 1 Tim. 1:2; Phile. 1:3; etc.)!  In fact, my favorite Bible verse, the one which gives me hope, says, "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is" (1 Jn. 3:2). 

Jesus opened the door for both Jews and Gentiles to become God's children.  John wrote, "He (Jesus) came unto His own (Israel), and His own received Him not.  But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name:  which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (Jn. 1:11-13)!  Just as when God chose Abraham to be the father of the Jews, and they would be considered His children, the same is true for those of us who are Gentiles:  God has chosen us through adoption (Rom. 8:15, 23; 9:4; Gal. 4:5; Eph.1:5), and has made us one family:  His (Eph. 2:11-19)!

God is the Father of all who accept Jesus as their Lord before they die!


Friday, October 4, 2013


Recently, someone asked me if anyone died during the one thousand-year, millennial reign of Jesus, and to be quite honest, I was not sure.  I knew of the verse which speaks of a person dying at the age of one hundred being considered a child (Isa. 65:20), but in the next two verses, Isaiah speaks of men living to be as old as trees, and that they apparently will not die, as no one gets their inheritance.  So, I decided that today, I would try to "rightly divide," and see what the Word says on the subject.   

Just a reminder, when the Bible speaks of "rightly dividing the Word" (2 Tim. 2:15), I believe it is referring to the study of God's seven-staged revelation to mankind.  With each of the seven unique dispensations, He reveals more about Himself and about His plan.  What man always does with the information, with the exception of a remnant, is to reject it, resulting in death, both spiritual and physical.  Examples:

*  Innocence - Do not eat of one tree - they ate - the fall; they died spiritually.
*  Conscience - Do what you know is right - they were wicked - the flood.
*  Government - Do replenish the Earth - they congregated - nations fought Wars.
*  Israel - Do occupy the land - they went to Egypt - many, as slaves, died.
*  The Law - Do obey the Law or sacrifice - they crucified their innocent Messiah.
*  The Church - Do preach the Gospel - we fail and billions remain spiritually dead.
*  The Millennium - Do obey Christ - Satan is loosed and billions who rebel, die.

In all of the dispensations, some form of death takes place as a result of sin, but the Millennium is unique for a couple of very obvious reasons:  1)  The Creator of the Universe dwells with mankind, and sin is dealt with quickly and severely, an obvious deterrent (Ps. 2:9; Rev. 2:27; 12:5; 19:15; etc.); and 2)  Satan is bound for the thousand years (Rev. 20:3).  The reason that is so significant is because death is the working of Satan; Hebrews 2:14 says, "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."  It isn't until Satan is loosed at the end of the Millennium, that death is mentioned, and it occurs to those who follow him in attacking Jesus and His saints (Rev. 20:7-9)!
The death men need to fear the most, is the second death (Rev. 21:8)!!!


Thursday, October 3, 2013


As some of you might imagine, I came under fire for yesterday's post entitled:  "IS THE CHURCH THE BRIDE OF CHRIST?"  To be honest, I expected it to be much worse than it has been.  After all, here I was, a nobody, "challenging the pillars of the faith."  Which reminds me of another, far more spiritual and gifted Paul, who was respectful but uninhibited by the "pillars" he encountered (Gal. 2:9).  So, let's look at my basis for saying the Bride of Christ and the Wife of the LORD are the same "person":

*  God is a Triune God, One God, and He identifies Israel as His wife (Isa. 54:5; Jer. 3:14).
*  God hates divorce (Mal. 2:16; Lk. 16:18).
*  God has removed the divide between saved Jews and saved Gentiles in Christ, making us one:  the Church (Eph. 2:13-16).
*  God will reconcile with Israel as her Husband (Isa. 54:5-7; Jer. 3:12-14; the Book of Hosea, especially 14:1-9; Rom. 11:23-29).

Although there is not a single verse in the New Testament that specifically says the Church IS the Bride of Christ, it is clearly taught by the Apostle Paul in Ephesians 5:22-33.  The word "bride" only appears four times (Jn. 3:29; Rev. 18:23; 21:2, 9).  None tell us the Church alone is the bride; that teaching has become truth based upon men's interpretation, which, if we are honest with ourselves, almost smacks of Replacement Theology.  Israel remains the wife of the LORD, with whom He will reconcile following the Abomination of Desolation at which time, Israel's eyes will be opened (two points here:  God does not go back on His word and therefore would not divorce Israel permanently, and when Jesus was referring to Himself as the Bridegroom, He was always speaking to Jews.  The Church is made up of Jews and Gentiles).
In Rev. 21:9-10, the text clearly says, "Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife.  And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God."  And if one reads the last verse in the chapter, he will find that the population of that city is listed in the Lamb's Book of Life, which contains the names of all of the saved, Jew and Gentile.

Doctrine must result from studying ALL His Word has to say on a topic!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


Is the Church the Bride of Christ?  Yes!  And no!  The Book of Revelation describes Christ's Bride:  "And there came unto me one of the seven angels . . . saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife.  And he . . . shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, having . . . a wall great and high, and had twelve gates . . . and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel . . . and the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb" (Rev. 21:9-14).  WHAT?  God will still accept Israel as being His bride, after she repeatedly killed God's messengers and rejected His Son?  How can that be?  The answer is GRACE!

We all know that born again believers are saved by grace, that is, that we deserve death; and yet, because God is merciful, He offers salvation to whomsoever will accept His Son (Jn. 1:11-12; Rom. 10:8-13; Eph. 2:8-9; etc.).  In Romans 11:1-29, Paul explained that Israel was hindered from recognizing the truth (v. 25), but that once the Gentiles were given the opportunity to accept Jesus, God will save ALL Israel (v. 26)!  Again, how can that be?  The answer is the same:  GRACE!

It will be during the Tribulation that the "blindness" will be removed, and Israel will finally recognize that Jesus was, and always will be, their Messiah.  When the Antichrist commits the Abomination of Desolation (Dan. 9:27; 11:31; 12:11; Mt. 24:15; Rev. 13:5-7; etc.), they suddenly realize that the one they had believed to be their Christ, was in fact, the Antichrist!  The Spirit of God will bring to their memory the sequence of events in Daniel's prophecy of seventy weeks (9:24-27):  the Antichrist will confirm a covenant with them and will break it at a time long AFTER THEIR MESSIAH HAD BEEN KILLED!  That means, Jesus was their Messiah; and since the prophecies of His Kingdom were yet to be fulfilled, they will know He will be returning soon!  GRACE UPON GRACE!

It is no surprise that Israel will be a part of the Bride; the Old Testament referred to her as God's wife many times.  In fact, the Book of Hosea is a picture of God and His unfaithful wife, Israel!  While there are some who think God divorced her PERMANENTLY, God's view on divorce over adultery is clearly revealed in Matthew 19:8 which says, "He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so."
God does not have a hardened heart!  His bride consists of the Church and Israel! 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Modesty goes far beyond mere dress and physical appearance. It is an attitude of the mind. It is the adorning of the hidden man of the heart. It is a meek and quiet spirit which in the sight of God is of great price. Modesty is displayed by the person who does not want to draw attention to self, but rather desires that the Savior would receive all the attention. By her dress (or lack of dress) the immodest person is saying, "Look at me! Look at my body!" In contrast, look at Proverbs 31:30: "Favor is deceitful (deceptive) and beauty is vain (illusory), but a woman who feareth the LORD, she shall be praised." The message that comes from the life and witness of a modest person is this: 
               "Look at CHRIST living in me.  HE is my life and my love!"

*  Gal. 2:20  "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me."
*  Eph. 4:1  "I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called (that means to walk worthy of our high, heavenly and holy calling)."
*  Rom. 13:14  "But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof."
*  Ps. 90:17  "And let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us."
*  Phil. 1:20-21  "According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain."
Whether male or female, we each need to realize the problems that are created as we fail to abide in Christ, allowing ourselves to be controlled by the flesh instead. Walking in the flesh cultivates sinful and self-centered passions which reap a harvest of wrong relationships, wrongful sex, and countless problems. As believers we are free and privileged to display God’s Person by means of the Lord Jesus Christ, to show the excellencies of our Saviour and not to promote SIN and SELF. By God’s grace may we cover the nakedness of our flesh with the clothing (Col. 3:12-14; Eph. 4:24).
Dress as though you are about to meet Jesus:  with humility and modesty!