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Peter denied Christ three times, after vowing he never would. He shifted like sand. You don’t build on sand, you build on bed-rock. It is, however, the statement which Peter made, his God-given thoughts, it is the fact of those thoughts, to which Jesus referred when He said He will build His church. Notice this: He said He, Jesus, will build His church, not that Peter would build His church.
Matt 16:13-20“Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, He was asking His disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” And they said, “Some say John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; but still others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.” He *said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, aSimon 1Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. “I also say to you that you are 1aPeter, and upon this2rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.” Then He warned the disciples that they should tell no one that He was the Christ.” NASU (underline mine for emphasis)
It is also interesting to note that Mark and Luke do NOT confirm the rendition in Matthew calling Peter a rock. Here, the footnote 1a at Peter says the Greek says Peter (Petros) means ‘stone’ small stone, a piece of rock; some say as in pebble. While footnote 2 here says that the Greek says (Petra) a large stone as in bed-rock foundation.
It was when Peter made the statement of “Thou Art The Christ” that Jesus said, “Flesh and blood did not reveal this to you but My Father who Is in heaven” “Upon this rock” ( the foot-note says that the Greek word rock here: foundation, bed-rock;) “I will build my church” Jesus did not say ‘upon you I will build my church’.
NT:4074 Pe/tro$ Petros (pet’-ros); apparently a primary word; a (piece of) rock (larger than NT:3037); as a name, Petrus, an apostle:
KJV – Peter, rock.
NT:3037 li/qo$ lithos (lee’-thos); apparently a primary word; a stone (literally or figuratively):
KJV – (mill-, stumbling-) stone.
—- Strongs Exaustive Concordance
Peter was Simon but Jesus changed his name to Peter. Petros: In tracing the meaning of the word Petros, used for Peter, Strongs Exhausive Concordance reveals the meaning “ A PIECE OF ROCK.”
In tracing the meaning of Cephas, (Kephas) it lists the surname of Peter and compares it to (Keph) a hollow rock and (to Kaphaph ) to curve. This is Peter
Petros: a piece of rock larger than a stumbling stone, as a name Petrus the apostle, and compares to NT reference where Jesus actually calls Peter a stumbling stone.
In tracing the meaning of the word Petra, Strongs reveals its meaning as A MASS OF ROCK,(LITERALLY OR FIGURATIVELY) This is Jesus.
If PETRA is a mass of rock; and if PETROS is a piece of rock; might one be able to say: Peter was “a chip off the old block” ?? (smile)
The further words of ‘hollow’ and ‘curved’ connected to keph or Cephas are thought provoking: Peter’s denial may be considered ‘hollow’. He threw a curve ball.
If built upon Peter, Peter denied Christ three times, after vowing he never would. He shifted like sand. His denial was hollow because he didn’t really mean what he said at the time.
Peter was weak – Jesus called him Satan, that is a weak foundation. Jesus knew all that ahead of time. You don’t build on sand, you build on bed-rock.
It is, however, the statement Peter made, his God-given thoughts, it is the fact of those thoughts to which Jesus referred which are the bed-rock foundation upon which the church is built and is still being built.
He *said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, aSimon 1Barjona, because fleshand blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. NASU (underline emphasis mine)
The word THIS is used to point to objects, used alone it is never a synonym for a person.
One is correct in knowing that the statement is the actual foundation, with Christ the Cornerstone, and that is true. Therefore, it may seem strange that Jesus commanded them to tell no one that He is the Christ. Why? Because personal revelation from the Father like Peter had is the foundation which God wants – a personal relationship with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. “Because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.”
If one still wishes to say that Jesus says Peter is the foundation for the Roman Catholic Church, then we owe it to ourselves to continue reading a few verses down where Jesus turns right around and then calls Peter Satan. Ouch ! Some foundation on which to build a church, huh?
Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You.” But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.” NASU
Question: Is it a matter of CHURCH-IANITY OR CHRIST-IANITY?
Answer Luke 3:8-9
“…and do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham for our father,’(or we are Baptist or we are Catholic or we are etc…) for I say to you that from these stones God is able to raise up children to Abraham.”NASU There is that word ‘stone’ again.
Still many are comfortable thinking it is Church-ianity, passing the responsibility on to a church, or THE church, …if we think our church (your church) is THE church. Do we think God will be checking a church list? Are we to depend upon a membership list of a certain church? No! The Baptists think it is them. The Catholics think it is them, etc… The Jews thought being Jewish was enough. Yet, Jesus said, “I can turn these stones into Jews”
The statement that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God companioned with the fact that flesh and blood did not reveal THIS to you but My Father who is in heaven…
…this is the THIS upon which His universal church is built. The word “THIS” is not a synonym for a man as He did not say ‘upon you’; He said ‘upon this’. Believe it or not, isn’t it true that the church (building) IS made up of the people (stones) to whom God has personally revealed Himself? How lucky and blessed we are! …And, we, ourselves, you and I, continue to build with that foundation ! Like Peter, we are also stones put upon a Rock solid foundation; the Rock being Christ Jesus, the personal knowing of Christ Jesus making us a part of the building on that Rock. Praise the Lord !
“… in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit.” – NASU
Paul, because of his writing, not Peter, has done more to build a church founded on these statements and the Gospel than Peter had done. Peter did not have the Gospel at that time, since Jesus had not yet died and paid the price for us. God’s Church is built upon the Gospel. Without the Gospel, there is no church. Jesus was seeing into Peter’s future in the church.
‘You’, in this instance, refers back to ‘ church’. It refers back to the church because there is no plural to the word ‘you’. In English, the word ‘you’ is both singular and collective, there is no plural. The keys are given to the church, which Jesus had just established, to which He referred, and which exists today. In this universal church, you and I are also keeper of those keys.
…I am going to give you, the collective body of the church which I am herewith establishing, the keys.The collective body, the church, made up of the people who have received the personal revelation of God, like you have just received, Peter…
After the Resurrection, after the Gospel had been completed, Paul, to whom the Father also personally revealed Jesus as the Christ, wrote most of the New Testament. If a man, in conjunction with Jesus and Holy Spirit, were to start building the church on something, it stands to reason that that man would be Paul, not Peter. The New Testament is also stone on the foundation, with Jesus Christ revealed in it as the Chief Cornerstone. This is the solid foundation upon which Paul, and we as his disciples, build. Peter IS a stone in the building of the universal Church, which is the body with Christ as the Head. Peter was restored after his mistakes, as are we! Restoration is part of the church. Peter is not to be scorned: People received healing in Peter’s shadow.
Peter might be a colorful rock in the building. He certainly was a colorful guyl! And I pay Peter a compliment in this way!
We are stones and rocks to be put in the building on the Foundation. Maybe some of you are colorful too?
It is not ironic that as Peter wrote the book of 1st Peter, he used the word ‘stones’ to identify fellowfollowers. . . :
1 Peter 2:4-8
As you come to him, the living Stone — rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him— you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For in Scripture it says:
“See, I lay a stone in Zion,
a chosen and precious cornerstone,
and the one who trusts in him
will never be put to shame.”
Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe,
“The stone the builders rejected
has become the capstone,”
“A stone that causes men to stumble
and a rock that makes them fall.” – NIV
At the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were taking place among the people; and they were all with one accord in Solomon’s portico. But none of the rest dared to associate with them; however, the people held them in high esteem. And all the more believers in the Lord, multitudes of men and women, were constantly added to their number, to such an extent that they even carried the sick out into the streets and laid them on cots and pallets, so that when Peter came by at least his shadow might fall on any one of them. Also the people from the cities in the vicinity of Jerusalem were coming together, bringing people who were sick or afflicted with unclean spirits, and they were all being healed. NASU
This is a picture of what should be happening in the universal church today. And I believe we are in the advent of seeing it restored once again.Concerning the Roman Catholic Church, who has adopted the word ‘catholic’, placing Peter as the head of that church, let some things be re-considered:
Had Christ intended to describe Peter, all He needed to say was: You are Peter and on you I will build My Church.
But He didn’t say that.
But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.” NASU
…and again in Mark:
But turning around and seeing His disciples, He rebuked Peter and *said, “Get behind Me, Satan; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.” NASU
(what does this say about Peter and the Roman Catholic Church now ? Still wish to claim Peter as the rock after Jesus called him satan?) Hmmmm….should be food for thought here…) (Even Pope Francis, according to some of his statements ((see end notes)) seems now to be thinking of things from man’s point of view, not God’s point of view.) Be informed: Pope Francis said: ‘Atheists who see no need for Jesus go to heaven? ‘ ((see end notes)).. HOGWASH. That is NOT what God says at all. God says we need to recognize and receive His Son)
1 Cor 6:9-11
“ Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.” NASU
Also: The report from Vatican officials of Pope Francis’ meeting with transgender person seems to show the church has approved of wrongdoing without need of repentance. ((see end note)) Jesus stressed repentance. “Go, and sin no more, less something worse come upon you.”
Yet, “ Love me, love what I do” is sinners mantra. “If you don’t love what I do, then you hate me”, is their modus operendi. Nothing could be further from the truth, and yet too many Christians fall for it. Has this Pope fallen for it? It seems so by his actions and lack of words, because any misconceptions have not yet been cleared. Pope Francis said, “Who am I to judge?” when a transgender asked if he could still be in the church
But Holy Scriptures say:
1 Cor 5:9-13
I wrote you in my letter not to associate with immoral people; I did not at all mean with the immoral people of this world, or with the covetous and swindlers, or with idolaters, for then you would have to go out of the world. But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler — not even to eat with such a one. For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within the church? But those who are outside, God judges. REMOVE THE WICKED MAN FROM AMONG YOURSELVES. — NASU (caps are real, only underlined emphasis mine)
In saying “Go and sin no more”, Jesus was not speaking of sinless perfection. He was warning against a return to sinful lifestyle choices. Jesus was always a perfect balance of grace and truth. His words both extended mercy and demanded holiness.
John 8:11 “I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more.”] NASU
John 5:14 “Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you.” NASU
Jesus did not preach blanket acceptance, Jesus taught the necessity of repentance.
Let us move on from Catholic Pope Francis and Peter, to the issue of Peter and the rock, or The Rock
Is Peter the rock, or is Jesus the Rock? – Upon which is the universal church built?
Jesus tells us He Himself is the Rock. Many times throughout Scripture rock with “R” signifies that Jesus Himself is the Rock upon which the universal church is built. You can’t build on a piece of a rock,
1 Cor 10:1-5
1 Cor 10:1-5
“I want you to know, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same supernatural food and all drank the same supernatural drink. For they drank from the supernatural Rock which followed them, and the Rock was Christ. Nevertheless with most of them God was not pleased; for they were overthrown in the wilderness.” RSV
4 “The Rock! His work is perfect
For all His ways are 1just;
A God of faithfulness and without injustice,
Righteous and upright is He. NASU
“But Jeshurun grew fat and kicked–
You are grown fat, thick, and sleek —
Then he forsook God who made him,
And scorned the Rock of his salvation. NASU
“You neglected the Rock who begot you,
And forgot the God who gave you birth. NASU
“How could one chase a thousand,
And two put ten thousand to flight,
Unless their Rock had sold them,
And the Lord had given them up? NASU
“Indeed their Rock is not like our Rock,
Even our enemies themselves judge this. NASU
1 Samuel 23:28
“Then they arose and went to Ziph before Saul. Now David and his men were in the wilderness of Maon, in the Arabah to the south of Jeshimon. When Saul and his men went to seek him, they told David, and he came down to the Rock and stayed in the wilderness of Maon. And when Saul heard it, he pursued David in the wilderness of Maon. Saul went on one side of the mountain, and David and his men on the other side of the mountain; and David was hurrying to get away from Saul, for Saul and his men were surrounding David and his men to seize them. But a messenger came to Saul, saying, “Hurry and come, for the Philistines have made a raid on the land.” So Saul returned from pursuing David and went to meet the Philistines; therefore they called that place the Rock of Escape. David went up from there and stayed in the strongholds of Engedi.” NASU
2 Samuel 23:3
“The God of Israel said,
The Rock of Israel spoke to me,
‘He who rules over men righteously,
Who rules in the fear of God, NASU
“Trust in the Lord forever,
For in God the Lord, we have an everlasting Rock. NASU
You will have songs as in the night when you keep the festival,
And gladness of heart as when one marches to the sound of the flute,
To go to the mountain of the Lord, to the Rock of Israel. NASU
‘Do not tremble and do not be afraid;
Have I not long since announced it to you and declared it?
And you are My witnesses.
Is there any God besides Me,
Or is there any other d Rock? I know of none.'” NASU
Are You not from everlasting,
O Lord, my God, my Holy One?
We will not die.
You, O Lord, have appointed them to judge;
And You, O Rock, have established them to correct. NASU
Now, Who is the Rock
Is it Peter or
Is it Jesus !
On which rock, Rock, would you build ? On a fragment, or on bed-rock?
Just have a little talk with Jesus, He’d love to hear from you !
(The writer/author was educated in the Catholic education system, attending both parochial schools and Catholic churches. As such, she is quite familiar and well versed with its teachings.)
“Who is that important man standing at the foot of my bed? He looks very important! Oh, look! He even has ambassadors with him!
“He looks Jewish,. maybe he looks Irish….does he look Irish? No. He looks Jewish! He is a very important person.”
It was the middle of the night. The lady was in a hospital bed, in an extended care unit. She was Irish. And this lady was quite proud of her Irish heritage.
I was there at her bedside this night and several nights. A plea came through the pulpit, from a well known, well respected local senior attorney, who also happens to be Irish.
Turning to the bed, I hear the lovely delicate lady asking who her visitors are. It must be 1:30 A.M or thereabouts. She is mostly talking to herself since she is totally deaf and can’t hear even if I answer. I sit quietly and listen. I do not want to interrupt her reverie. I make no effort to put the lights on to use the pen and pad. She is absolutely seeing visitors, visitors that I was not seeing. Yet, I sensed peace in the room.
“They are important men. Well, one is more important. He has well-dressed men with him. He looks Irish. No… He looks Jewish, No, he must be Irish, and has important men with him, they must be ambassadors. He is Jewish I think. They are very important. They came to see me and are standing in a group here at the foot of my bed. They are very important.”
I sit quietly in a chair by the window. I know it must be Jesus Who is here to see her. I know my Friend Jesus is in the room with us. She had been reliving some moments from the past earlier in the evening. I remain quiet while He has His moments with her.
The earlier call from the pulpit was “We’re looking for volunteer to sit by a lady’s bedside all night long, from 7 p.m. to 7 or 9 a.m. and report back. Different family members sit with her during the days, but they feel they need someone to sit nights.” the Pastor said. The dear lady was complaining about bad happenings during the night hours.
The first night at the unit was uneventful. The family met me and asked me to write everything down and I was provided with a steno-pad and pen.
The lady was there to heal from a broken hip. She was uncomfortable quite a bit but was able to get periods of light rest and some sleep granting her intermittent relief from her pain. The second night, when she was peacefully sleeping, some nurses or aids came in to weigh her. I told them that now was NOT a good time to do that, the poor lady was getting some needed peace and rest. The aids seemed firm that it had to be done. I was equally firm that they would NOT wake her from rest. They came back when she was awake and I watched the process of getting her into a sling. This caused her considerable pain and she cried out. The family found out what the bad night problems were and they put a total stop to it.
On the notepad, I document the events for the family. In the note I ask them to please relate to their Mother Who I thought had visited her in the night. I don’t know if they did.
She slept peacefully the next night.
After that, the family gave me an envelope with a monetary thank you saying that I wouldn’t be needed any more. They, through their family physician, had ended uncomfortable night weigh-ins and solved the mystery of the ‘bad happenings’ in the middle of the night. They were grateful. I have been told that the hospital has since changed their policy on weigh in procedures.
I would like to think that the family was also comforted by the fact that Jesus knew where their Mother was and that He had made a special heavenly visit to her room.
The third night I was there, I remember looking out the window seeing a blinding blizzard. Snow was blowing sideways, swirling around in circles, absolutely filling the cold night March air with rioting curtains of white. Visibility was nil. All one could see were curtains of white blowing all which ways. One could not see through these ‘billowing curtains’. I made a special note of thanking the Lord that my family was all safe. Little did I know that that very night my son was on the road to the hospital in this blinding storm, with his wife who was about to give birth, and that I would see the baby in that same hospital before I left that day shortly after dawn.
God is in the details of our lives, especially during tough times. As I was leaving the hospital shortly past dawn that day, I had received the unexpected message that my son and daughter-in-law had made it to the maternity ward in time for the delivery of their third child. I found that unit just as the baby was born. What I was not aware of, was the harrowing time they had driving through that blinding blizzard where visibility was practically zero. My son admitted to his many prayers on the journey into the city over lonely snow deep drifting country roads in the middle of the night where he could hardly tell where the road was. At the next turn, a snowplow appeared in front of them! They were able to make it to the main road.
God is in the details of our lives often when we are least aware. He had a believer in the room with the elderly lady, one whom respected the heavenly visitation, He had an angel on a snowplow, and He timed a baby’s delivery that night. Did angels from a hospital room in the city move swiftly to a snowplow in the country miles away? Do you think a son’s prayers combined with unknown concurring prayers of thanksgiving from an unaware Mother contributed to the appearance of angels on the road that night?
There was a commotion amongst the people of the city..
“What is all this commotion about?”
“People are saying there are strange happenings in the sky outside and are rushing outside to see.”
Being already outside, I look up. The people who have left the buildings are grouped outside, standing looking up at the sky.
“Well, yes,” they say, “ this IS unusual. The cloud formations are quite unique, never seen anything like this before. It is a beautiful day, but I’ve seen enough. We will probably read about it in the papers tomorrow. We have other things to do.” And they start back inside.
“WAIT,” I say. “Look, don’t you see? The clouds are moving in formations and they are shaping something.
“Yeah, we see that. We have to get back to work. You can stay outside if you like.”
“But don’t you see, this means something! The moving and blowing clouds are continually shaping into what looks like wedding decorations. They resemble beautiful decorations of a wedding cake. Don’t you see what this means? Don’t you know what is happening, and what this means?”
“Stand there as long as you like, we’re going back inside.”
I stand outside awhile, soaking it all in. I feel different. I feel joy – anticipatory joy is soaking all through me.
They go back inside to their darkness. I walk home in the light. This vision ended there.
I study Holy Scriptures more now and with a new hunger.
Things I saw before seem to come alive with newness.
SEVERAL YEARS LATER: VISION #2
In a vision, I am outside in my own side yard and become aware of a happening in the sky again. This time I see some people in flowing robes floating upwards here and there. Looking around, I see the numbers growing, as the air space is large. I seem to sense, or do I actually see, a very large image-like figure of a polite but powerful personage higher up. This figure is emitting an aura of welcoming.
I feel as though my feet are glued to the ground as these people float past me.
“Can I come, too?”
“Look down, Little One…”
Looking down, I see the ground becoming further and further away as I float with them!
This vision closed with that… so I guess it is …to be continued… at a time of His choosing. selah…
As good spiritual appetizers .. one might wish to savor these things… …
Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words. NIV
1 Thess 5:4-7
But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled. NIV
I was quietly dusting the house with nothing particular on my mind at the moment except how to get the dust out from under a bookshelf. When:
BOOM! God spoke!
“Women are submitting to things on the marriage bed to which they have no business submitting — and I will hold them each responsible.” (Wow, where did that come from?!)
His Voice seemed so audible that I turned around to see if someone had entered the room.
Testing the spirits I responded with Scripture:
“But Scripture says that the marriage bed will not be defiled.”
With a disappointed sideways glance behind Him, which I saw in the spirit, BOOM — God said:
“Yes, I said it WILL not be defiled. You are a mother. When you tell a child that they WILL NOT go outside today, it does not mean that the child is physically unable to go outside. It means that it carries with it an, as yet, undisclosed consequence. I am even more upset when I see it happening in my church. I cannot clean up the world until I first clean up my church. I am angry and I am getting ready to act.”
I saw in the spirit, God the Father sitting on a huge cloud-white throne, so large that the earth really IS His footstool. He was leaning forward, with His Hands pushing on the arms of the Throne, getting ready to arise.
I carried this message in my heart, yet still asking God for confirmation. It wasn’t long when a radio call-in show had a young girl asking if she had to submit to things which her husband was demanding. The husband used the Scripture that wives were to submit to husbands. The immorality he forced her into was obviously against God, decency and law. God sees this and more. He is Angry and He is letting us know.
Further revelations that women are NOT to always submit to husbands are found in God’s treatment of Ananias and Sapphira. They were a couple obeying each other in marriage’s mutual submission to each other– and to a lie. Separate from each other, they were each given an individual opportunity to repent. Neither betrayed the other, neither confessed, neither repented. Separately, they were each struck dead, one after the other. And this is New Testament. So much for mutual submission in that marriage. That consequence was severe. Acts 5:1-11
Then we have Adam and Eve, husband and wife, in the Old Testament. Likewise, they agreed in mutual submission. God did NOT honor that mutual submission either. That consequence was severe, even affecting their offspring, (us), and who knows, maybe even Cain and Able.
I know, tough stuff, right?
Bottom line: We are to submit to God, not to man. Women, your husbands are NOT God, no matter how hard they may try to convince you.
The Old Testament and New Testament confirm each other regarding improper submission in marriage. He has proven that He will hold each equally responsible. I think that means PAY ATTENTION.
Common Sense: Unrestrained passion leads to perversion. Perversion leads to pandemonium and all manner of sin unrestricted.
God never calls man the ‘boss’. He calls him ‘leader’. Leaders lead from the front, giving us a choice whether to follow or not to follow. Bosses do not. Bosses drive from behind, usually with a whip. Freedom always contains the freedom to say “No.”
Ok, what about God loving the sinner but hating the sin? Think on this: God doesn’t send sin to hell, he sends sinners to hell because of personal choices made. Tough stuff. So, what is a sexual sin in marriage one might rightly ask? The Bible has instructions for proper sex life, after all He created it. An example of proper sex life might be found in the SONG OF SOLOMON.
An example of improper sex life? Well – regardless of gender, sodomy is a sin, simply because sin is not a person but an action. God hates the sin, the action, not the persons. But He punishes the person who chooses the sin. We should be careful of actions because we will be judged by our actions. May we be clean in thought, word, action and deeds. Old Testament and New Testament also agree on these things.
It is quite easy for church-goers to be mis-led by non-Christians who attempt to quote and ultimately mis-apply Scripture. This is just what the devil did to Jesus in the temptation in the dessert; so, why should we ourselves be exempt? We know that Jesus threw the devil off by answering with Scripture – Scripture vs Scripture one might say.
Therefore, it would be good, with the help of the Holy Spirit, to study the Holy Scriptures. It helps if we personally know the Author – otherwise it is a locked book. So ask for His help before reading and studying.
Jesus is alive and in the world today. Talk to Him.
I realize there may be a few men who may wish to disagree and won’t like this; but remember, the man does not get off the hook in any way. God said He would hold them each responsible. The woman does not get off the hook in any way. Clip art of old couple
Notice the importance of self-control for America in the second stanza of AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL:
Do we get that part? CONFRIM OUR SOUL IN SELF CONTROL, in what? In SELF CONTROL! Self-control necessarily has restraints; and OUR LIBERTY IN LAW Law has RESTRICTIONS. Therefore liberty has restrictions. No restrictions, no law . Law is meant to protect us.
But, lest you get rebellious or hopeless to these thoughts; let me say that Tony Evans has a way of understanding which he explains well: REVERSING SEXUAL CONSEQUENCES
look for date Jan 26,2021 REVERSING SEXUAL CONSEQUENCES
listen through to the end — for:
“If MY people, who are called by MY Name will……turn from THEIR wicked ways….I will hear from Heaven and heal THEIR land….”
It matters what God thinks.
— – end —
Outlining other ‘wicked ways’ of the church may be found here under the topic JUDGING and under MIS-PLACED COMPASSION; another under NOT LETTING NON-CHRISTIANS DEFINE OR ATTEMPT TO RE-DEFINE CHRISTIANITY. Happy reading !
I.e. How ‘judge not’ is killing America and is actually an over-reaching sin in the church (we are to be salt and light – God spits out the ‘lukewarm’.)
i.e. How mis-placed compassion is killing America and can be an over-reaching sin in the church. Mis-directed compassion creates lukewarm-ness and can welcome the darkness to which we are to be light.
The Lord had starting telling me to write a column on ‘mis-placed compassion’. This is in response to my question of how people can be caught up in such backward thinking which shows a big lack of common sense. He answered me by saying – “They think they have compassion, and they do; but they have mis-placed compassions.”
When one stops and thinks about it, it may be readily seen. One need only consider the fact that more legal compassion is often shown to murderers than to their victims. I am sure more examples can be found.
Christians should be careful where they spread their compassion. Greasy Grace can have the effect of making God an accomplice to sin. And it is easy for church members to fall prey to this tactic. When God chooses to bless His people, to show the unbelievers how God chooses to bless and honor those who honor Him, should those people feel guilty for having more than others? …to the point that they will give away their blessings to people who ask because those people spend their money on luxuries and then beg for the necessities? I think not ! ! We should be good stewards of God’s provisions. Caring for the truly needy is one thing but having mis-placed compassion is another. Being indiscriminate in our giving, in other words, being poor stewards, can be a discredit and a disgrace to the managment of our own provisions. We need to be on guard using discernment, accompanied many times by research, to determine who is truly in need and who are not being good stewards of their own provisions.
Mis-Placed compassion can be quite costly and result in lengthy regrets, some life threatening.
Think of the young girl who ‘falls in love’ with a young man of questionable character, thinking all he needs is love. Ha! How many wind up beaten or dead? She had compassion on the wrong person, a person who did not think he needed changing. But, she had compassion, right?
Environmentalists: Lumber prices went up, lumberjacks were out of work because a few people had ‘compassion’ on the spotted white owl. Gee, did they forget about the evolution they teach? Let it evolve. No, just don’t cut the trees that give lumber for house building.
California, the fire laden state, instead of saving water, it pumps water back into the Pacific when it comes down from the North. Why? Because some environmentalists were more concerned about a tiny fish called ‘smelt’. Worshiping creation rather than the Creator.. Result? Water rationing for lawns, Dry land ripe for fires, landslides of mud and dirt because roots of burned trees no longer retain soil when rains do com. Homes lost. Because of mis-directed compassion on a small fish. Let the fish evolve if they believe in evolution, which they teach school children. Thankfully, President Trump introduced common sense regarding this issue.
Welfare: Mis-placed compassion on men who commit sex crimes – maybe prison will reform them- give them three strikes. Yeah, sure. How many people become victims of cock-eyed mis-placed ‘compassion’. Level three sex offenders should NEVER be let out. Chemical castration??..just let them take their own pill? Sure, Ha! Cock-eyed reasoning, just as ankle bracelets which can be cut off. Lock them up or give them physical castration.
See what is happening in New York City with bail reform.
See what has happened in San Francisco with mis-guided compassion on people who violate immigration laws.
I decided to see what else is out there on the topic of mis-placed compassion. I discovered there are already many good articles, whose links I will post here; while saving me from re-inventing the wheel.
This one says pretty much what’s on my mind: See what you think:
by Staff | Sep 11, 2015 Bill Lockwood of The Pierce County Tribune:—
“Misguided Compassion is part of the woes of this county. In fact “Few things have done more harm in the world than disproportionate compassion,” wrote William Lecky in The Map of Life. Examples of misguided compassion can be multiplied many times over, against which common sense as well as God’s Word continually warn us. For this reason, our founding fathers made unconstitutional any transfer of monies from one segment of society to another portion of the populace. Instead, all public monies were to be for the “general welfare” (Preamble to Constitution) which was defined as the well-being of all the people. Casting this sage advice, as well as LAW, behind their backs, the progressives have led us into the abyss of financial and moral collapse in America.
“Beginning in earnest in the days of Franklin Roosevelt and continued with a vengeance by Barack Obama, our ungodly welfare state is beyond mammoth proportions. Per NBC Business News 15% of Americans (46+ million) are on food stamps. CNN Money reports more than 1 in 7 citizens receive expenditures from the Department of Agriculture. Under Obama they are advertizing for more. The Huffington Post tells that dependence upon the government is at “an all time high.” Heritage Foundation statistics show that from the time of JFK when federal spending was distributed to 21.7 million Americans it is now 1 in 5 citizens! More than 67 million receive this aid. Of the federal budget, more than 70% goes to pay for housing, food, income, student aid, farm subsidies, etc.
“Some “conservative” pundits continue to argue that the federal government “needs” to provide a “safety net” for the poor or disadvantaged. This is compassion, we are told. But how are we to define “who” needs assistance? Where is the line to be drawn? How are we to reckon charity? In truth, any government (forcible) transfer of wealth from one person or group of people to another is not only unconstitutional, it is not even compassion. It is, what might be called, in the words of William Lecky, “misguided compassion” that erodes society.
“How Does Misguided Compassion Destroy Society? First, consider the penal code. The Apostle Paul shows us in Romans 13 that the government (“powers that be”) are ordained of God for the specific purpose of doing good. “For rulers are a terror, not to the good, but to the evil” (13:3). “For he is a minister of God to thee for good; but if you do that which is evil; be afraid, for he bears not the sword in vain” (4). To promote a civil society that rewards the good, God has ordained government. But this must also punish the evil, which is depicted here by “the sword,” indicating capital punishment. But as Lecky points out, “It is no exaggeration to say that the death of an interesting murderer will often arouse much stronger feelings than were ever excited by the death of his victim” But we must be on guard here, for “The humanitarian spirit is a perfectly right thing as long as it does not diminish the deterrent power of punishment as to increase crime, and as long as it does not place the criminal in a better position of comfort than the blameless poor.” If this becomes the case “compassion” becomes misguided and becomes more evil than good.
“Second, consider legislation protecting people from themselves. God demands work (2 Thess. 3:10) and that we must make a living by the “sweat of our brow.” But politicians, seeking to protect men from excessive labor (from themselves) and by “surrounding them with costly sanitary precautions, may easily, if they are injudiciously framed, so handicap a sex or a people in the competition of industry as to drive them out of great fields of industry, restrict their means of livelihood, lower their standard of wages and comfort, and thus seriously diminish the happiness of their lives.” Our staggering American economy testifies to the truthfulness of this statement.
“Third, consider the discipline of children. “Spare the rod and spoil the child” was revealed for a reason. “The parent who shrinks from inflicting any suffering on his child, or withholding from him any pleasure that he desires, is not laying the foundation of happy life, and the benevolence which counteracts or obscures the law of nature that extravagance, improvidence and vice lead naturally to ruin, is no real kindness either to the upright man who has resisted temptation to the weak man whose virtue is trembling doubtfully in the balance.”
“Fourth, consider state welfare. Biblically based benevolence is always freewill compassion, dependent upon the charity of individuals who have the option to give or not to give. Redistribution, however, (socialism) flying under the false flag of charity, is actually the “insidious growth of selfishness” and is a “disease against which men should be most on their guard.” Socialism is, at root, a deception. In truth, many and great evils spring from ill-considered charities. For this reason, the framers of our nation warned us of the socialistic state into which we are now plunging. Paying no heed to biblical injunctions, greedy progressives have made America a shambles by causing wickedness to grow. Compassion is Christ-like. But “misguided” or “unthinking” compassion is really not compassion. It is a destructive force in society.” — Bill Lockwood,–Concerned Citizen
From an Indian prophet:
“By giving you can destroy someone’s life. If you want to be the most compassionate working yourself up to some huge amount of emotion and reaching out to somebody… it is not compassion, it is self-gratification, devious ways to fulfill yourself. (sin of pride)
“Helping someone who has not fully evolved yet denies them the privilege of their own self-fulfillment.
“This is not about depriving people of something; this is about instead of helping people to evolve where they will naturally receive the bounty of life. If you give him something you will only overburden him, will only destroy his life. If you are concerned about somebody’s ultimate well-being, you must put him through the painstaking process of evolving himself to a higher possibility, where he will receive higher dimensions of life where receiving just happens to him because he deserves it.
“What you give and how you give is very important. You do not give just because somebody is asking. Very fine line between being trustful and being naïve. If you give beyond what people deserve, they become mean-spirited ” – by Sadhguru
“Yet the definition of compassion says nothing about protection. In fact, the definition indicates a desire to address, to alleviate or to fix. So Instead of alleviating, our compassion is protecting.
“Misguided compassion may enable others to stay in their situation instead of bettering themselves so they can have pride and self-fulfillment. And therein lies the problem. Our compassion is misguided. It’s pointing in the wrong direction. It’s all about us.”– Chris Weber
Ever notice the Ten Commandments deal most entirely with actions, until the end when it deals with thoughts? “Thou shalt not covet”? To covet is a thought –
In this life on earth, actions primarily define a person, while thoughts may be the primary defining element in the after-life. Perhaps this is why the devil likes to put bad thoughts in our minds, he tries to contaminate our spirits, that part of us which lives on.
As a child, I can remember hearing my Grand-Mother uttering the words: “Lord, perish the thought”.
God can be, and is, quite displeased with the thoughts we allow to stay in our minds…which we allow to stay in our minds…which we allow to stay in our minds.
“Then the Lord said to me: “Son of dust, have you seen what the elders of Israel are doing in their minds? For they say, ‘The Lord doesn’t see us; he has gone away!'” TLB
“And he said unto me, Hast thou seen, son of man, what the elders of the house of Israel do in the dark, every one in his chambers of imagery? for they say, Jehovah seeth us not; Jehovah hath forsaken the land.” Darby
Ezekiel 8:12 (my paraphrase) ‘Mortal man, have you seen what the church leaders (..and church members using My Name..) are doing in their minds?’
…. For it is to the CHURCH God says … turn from your wicked ways,…and He will heal our land.
Rev. 2:23 “…and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts.”
In heaven. Our physical bodies will be gone but our spirits will live on – we will communicate using our thoughts. Other people, including Jesus, will hear our thoughts. So if this is true we should do our best to clean up our thoughts while here on earth, with the additional side effect of healing our land. Let us ALL do our part and see for ourselves how important our thoughts are to God, either pleasing or displeasing:
In the NIV, there may be found 57 references to the word THOUGHTS and 37 references to the word MIND.
So that the Lord may work with each reader individually, the partial lists may be found here. “search me O God, and see if there be any wicked way in me”
“Examine me, O God, and know my mind;test me, and discover my thoughts. Find out if there is any evil in me and guide me in the everlasting way. ” GNT (Good News Translation)
…is a good prayer to say before reviewing this list. It may be different for everyone. Good luck and may The Lord open the heart and mind of God to each of us.
“IF my people who are called by My Name….will turn from their wicked ways…I will heal their land.”
The healing of our land, the land allotted to the righteous, depends upon God’s people being righteous and turning from the ways which God considers wicked, and it begins with our thoughts.
Let’s see what He says:
57 references to ‘thoughts’ :
5 The Lord saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time.6 The Lord was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain. 7 So the Lord said, “I will wipe mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth — men and animals, and creatures that move along the ground, and birds of the air — for I am grieved that I have made them.” 8 But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. NIV
1 Chronicles 28:9
9 “And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever. 10 Consider now, for the Lord has chosen you to build a temple as a sanctuary. Be strong and do the work.” NIV
Psalms 10:4 In his pride the wicked does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God. NIV
Psalms 13:2 How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and every day have sorrow in my heart? How long will my enemy triumph over me NIV
Psalms 55:2 hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught
Psalms 92:5 How great are your works, O Lord, how profound your thoughts!
Psalms 94:11 1 The Lord knows the thoughts of man; he knows that they are futile.
Psalms 139:2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.
Psalms 139:17 How precious tome are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! (Ask God to give you His thoughts)
Psalms 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. NIV
Proverbs 1:23 If you had responded to my rebuke, I would have poured out my heart to you and made my thoughts known to you. NIV
Proverbs 15:26 The Lord detests the thoughts of the wicked, but those of the pure are pleasing to him. NIV
Ecclesiastes 10:20 Do not revile the king even in your thoughts, or curse the rich in your bedroom, because a bird of the air may carry your words, and a bird on the wing may report what you say.
Isaiah 55:7 Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.
Isaiah 59:7 Their feet rush into sin; they are swift to shed innocent blood. Their thoughts are evil thoughts; ruin and destruction mark their ways. NIV
Jeremiah 4:14 O Jerusalem, wash the evil from your heart and be saved. How long will you harbor wicked thoughts? NIV
Now, let’s see what Jesus and the New Testament say about our thoughts. Are our thoughts really all that important? Let’s see for ourselves if the New Testament confirms the Old Testament on this issue:
Matthew 9:4 Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts? 5 Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 6 But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins. . . .” Then he said to the paralytic, “Get up, take your mat and go home.” 7 And the man got up and went home. 8 When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe; and they praised God, who had given such authority to men.
Matthew 12:25 Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand. 26 If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand? 27 And if I drive out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your people drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. 28 But if I drive out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
Matthew 15:19 “Are you still so dull?” Jesus asked them. 17 “Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? 18 But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man ‘unclean.’19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. 20 These are what make a man ‘unclean‘; but eating with unwashed hands does not make him ‘unclean.'”
Mark 7:21 He went on: “What comes out of a man is what makes him ‘unclean.’ 21 For from within, out of men’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, 22 greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and make a man ‘unclean.'”
Luke 1:51 He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts
Luke 2:35 The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”
Luke 9:47An argument started among the disciples as to which of them would be the greatest. 47 Jesus, knowing their thoughts, took a little child and had him stand beside him. 48 Then he said to them, “Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. For he who is least among you all — he is the greatest.”
Luke 11:17Jesus knew their thoughtsand said to them: “Any kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and a house divided against itself will fall. 18 If Satan is divided against himself, how can his kingdom stand? I say this because you claim that I drive out demons by Beelzebub. 19 Now if I drive out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your followers drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. 20 But if I drive out demons by the finger of God, then the kingdom of God has come to you.
Comment: Jesus knows our thoughts in this life; how much more in the afterlife…!
Romans 2:15 All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law. 13 For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. 14 (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law, 15 since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts now accusing, now even defending them.) 16 This will take place on the day when God will judge men’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.
1 Corinthians 2:11 The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. 11 For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. 12 We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. 13 This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.c 14 The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. 15 The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment:
1 Corinthians 3:20 Do not deceive yourselves. If any one of you thinks he is wise by the standards of this age, he should become a “fool” so that he may become wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s sight. As it is written: “He catches the wise in their craftiness”;a 20 and again, “The Lord knows that the thoughts of the wise are futile.”
Ephesians 2:3 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions — it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Hebrews 3:1 Therefore, holy brothers, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, the apostle and high priest whom we confess.2 He was faithful to the one who appointed him, just as Moses was faithful in all God’s house.
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. 13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
Some select Scriptures sorted by using the word MIND.
Deuteronomy 11:18 Be careful, or you will be enticed to turn away and worship other gods and bow down to them. 17 Then the Lord’s anger will burn against you, and he will shut the heavens so that it will not rain and the ground will yield no produce, and you will soon perish from the good land the Lord is giving you. 18 Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 19 Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 20 Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates, 21 so that your days and the days of your children may be many in the land that the Lord swore to give your forefathers, as many as the days that the heavens are above the earth. NIV
Psalms 7:9 O righteous God,who searches minds and hearts,bring to an end the violence of the wicked and make the righteous secure. NIV
Comment: Let us pray this Psalm 7:9 for our Nation. Search hearts and minds, O Lord, and put and end to the violence and thoughts of the wicked and make the righteous secure. Thank you Lord, because with clean hearts and minds, we pray this according to Your will, as stated in the Scriptures.
Psalms 73:7 From their callous hearts comes iniquity; the evil conceits of their minds know no limits. NIV
Proverbs 12:8 A man is praised according to his wisdom, but men with warped minds are despised. NIV
Isaiah 44:18 They know nothing, they understand nothing; their eyes are plastered over so they cannot see, and their minds closed so they cannot understand. NIV
Jeremiah 14:14 Then the Lord said to me, “The prophets are prophesying lies in my name. I have not sent them or appointed them or spoken to them. They are prophesying to you false visions, divinations, idolatriesaand the delusions of their own minds…. I will pour out on them the calamity they deserve. NIV
Jeremiah 31:33 “This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time,” declares the Lord. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. NIV
Luke 24:38 They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. 38 He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? 39 Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.” NIV
Luke 24:45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46 He told them, “This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.” NIV
Comment: Oh, Lord, we ask that you open the minds of your readers here, to understand the Scriptures…. Thank you, Holy Spirit
Acts 14:2At Iconium Paul and Barnabas went as usual into the Jewish synagogue. There they spoke so effectively that a great number of Jews and Gentiles believed. 2 But the Jews who refused to believe stirred up the Gentiles and poisoned their minds against the brothers. 3 So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of his grace by enabling them to do miraculous signs and wonders.
Comment: Oh, Lord, don’t let our minds be poisoned…
Romans 8:5 Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. 6 The mind of sinful mane is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; 7 the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. 8 Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God. NIV
Romans 16:18 I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. 18For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people. 19Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I am full of joy over you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil. NIV
2 Corinthians 3:14 Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. 13 We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to keep the Israelites from gazing at it while the radiance was fading away. 14 But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. 15 Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. 16 But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18 And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. NIV
2 Corinthians 11:3 But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ.
Comment: Protect our minds, O Lord, that we not be led astray.
Ephesians 4:23 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. NIV
Philippians 4:7 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. NIV
Phil 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. RSV
1 Peter 1:13 Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”NIV
Revelation 2:23 Nevertheless, I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols. 21 I have given her time to repent of her immorality, but she is unwilling. 22 So I will cast her on a bed of suffering, and I will make those who commit adultery with her suffer intensely, unless they repent of her ways. 23 I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will repay each of you according to your deeds. 24 Now I say to the rest of you in Thyatira, to you who do not hold to her teaching and have not learned Satan’s so-called deep secrets (I will not impose any other burden on you): 25 Only hold on to what you have until I come. NIV
P.S. Dr. Tony Evans has an excellent sermon on ordering our thinking. This is a sermon which is Part 2 of Overcoming Emotional Strongholds.
If you like Part 2, you may find Part 1 and other messages from Dr. Evans by googling his name: also on Alexa by saying: “play Dr. Tony Evans The Alternative from One Place”
May you, dear readers, conquer the negative and become an over-comer through Christ Jesus and His Holy Spirit…to become your best you.
Sorry, Viewers. I do NOT know why this was discontinued when it ran for a few years quite well. It was a 4 minuite short clip from an hours long Q&A discussion with a panel of Mohler, Zacharias and Sproul. Both Ravi Zacharias and R.C. Sproul have since passed on. That is the only reason I can think of for having this short clip withdrawn. I have tried to contact Sproul’s Ligonier Ministries for permission, without success.
So, for your benefit let me quote one of Dr. Sproul’s succinct statements:
When the audience question was asked: (paraphrased) ‘God is a loving, forgiving God… He hates the sin, but loves the sinner, so all will go to heaven, right?
Sproul: “LOOK, THIS IS NOT MR. ROGERS’ NEIGHBORHOOD. GOD DOESN’T SEND SIN TO HELL…. HE SENDS SINNERS TO HELL.”
In these times we may expect Doomsday prophets to increase– but what purpose do these messages serve?
To induce fear and hopelessness?- That is how some react. But could they serve to issue dire warnings?
Many think the first. Some can tend to slip close to despair or cynicism.
If, however, warnings are the intention, what courses of action would be advised?
Let’s see if the Holy Scriptures address the issue:
Summary of 2 Kings 20:1-6 reveal that the Lord told King Hezekiah was at the point of death and would not recover. Yet when the King had a discourse with the Lord, the Lord relented and gave the King fifteen more years. Did the King simply accept the word that he would not recover, and wait to die? No, rather he entered into reasoning with…
This was published two years ago on 3/9/18, it is being re-posted again here now, two years later, because the need for the knowledge of its content still seems to exist
— Mary A. LaClair
2 Chron 7:14-15
if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, thenI will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. RSV (emphasis mine)
Because our land needs healing, let’s unpack this often quoted verse to its fullest. This verse is often heard with emphasis on the words “pray”. But that is not all this verse is saying. Not to be overlooked or diminished, which I think is happening, is the equally important phrase, “and turn from their wicked ways”.
How many times have we heard that part emphasized recently? The emphasis has been mostly on the word “pray”.
What happens if we do in fact pray, but do not in fact turn from our wicked ways?
Is God obligated to fulfill His part of the bargain …….if we do not meet or fulfill the ‘and’ words?
pray …AND seek… AND turn ….They are verbs – action words, if you will.
Who needs to take these actions? We need to know to whom this is addressed. Is it addressed to all people in general? Is it to God’s people? Who are God’s people? It tells us who they are. The ones ‘called by His Name’. The ones claiming to be ‘Christian’.
Can you see that we are the ones who carry the power to get our land healed? Wow! What power with God!
Why, then, is our land not being healed faster than it is?
We can pray, but unconfessed sin is a hindrance to our being heard. Three translations put the same verse this way:
Ps 66:18 “If I had ignored my sins, the Lord would not have listened to me.” TEV
Ps 66:18-19 “He would not have listened if I had not confessed my sins. But he listened! He heard my prayer! He paid attention to it! ” TLB
Ps 66:18 :…the Lord would not have listened; if I cherished sin in my heart.” NIV
This seems to deal with thoughts.
Ps 139:23-24 “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” NIV
Jer 23:24 “Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? says the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? says the Lord. ” AMP
Do church leaders need to strain at gnats and swallow camels ?
No. I believe there are large camels of sin in our churches. Where does one start? Well, because of all the sexual harassment claims, let’s start with lust. It is big in the world today and has even crossed lines into the churches. Several high profile pastors have admitted they have been delivered from pornography, many more probably have not; and it is not limited to pastors. Anyone who wants answers to prayers needs to consider themselves. Getting pornography removed from the internet would go a long way to curbing these sins in the Nation and in the church. In view of much sexual misconduct in Congress ; and in view of disrespect for human life via numerous mass murders, whether by vehicle, bombs, guns, or infanticide (abortion at birth), now would be a good time to express the need to respect life. I suggest this may be done by re-criminalizing BOTH porn AND abortion. We did not have these problems when those laws were in effect.
Now may be the time to cite some causes for these national problems and correct them: lack of respect for women and for human life . These are problems for which this Nation should find solutions, and as Christians we should be able to offer them those solutions, but not just for benefit of the church, for the benefit of our government and our country. In solving their problems we might just also be solving our own.
Teaching proper respect for ourselves and for the opposite sex would go a long way, but the Lord says the action itself needs to start with us.
God can’t clean up the world until He first cleans up His church. There are secret sins and not-so-secret-sins hidden within the church.
According to the opening Scripture, which holds a promise: We need to get rid of these sins in God’s people if our prayers are to be answered. Will it start with you and me? If it does, maybe then God can clean up the world a little faster. And God knows we need it. Our prayers won’t get ready answers until we first clean up the church. We can’t expect the world to be cleaner than the church.
1 Peter 3:7 “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers. ” NIV
WORK ON THE SOLUTION ! ……..
Who can discern his errors?Forgive my hidden faults. Keep your servant also from willful sins;may they not rule over me.Then will I be blameless,innocent of great transgression. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heartbe pleasing in your sight,O Lord , my Rock and my Redeemer. NIV
Encourage your flock to ask God to reveal to each individual any unconfessed and unknown sins which may be hindering their prayers. We should encourage repentance of sins while avoiding condemnation or even public confession. Blanket forgiveness of active sins without repentance is not God’s way. Jesus preached repentance. God can identify sin in those who ask, without producing excessive guilt. Repentance still needs to be preached today. Jesus is able to identify sin and convict individuals without condemnation. Let Him do it — but do encourage God’s lambs and sheep to seek God’s help in identifying their sin. Then, when you have cleansed yourself, pray for others to find the same courage of self examination and repentance.
Blessings upon all!
“…but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.” NIV
One final word:
Phil 2:13 “For God is at work within you, helping you want to obey him, and then helping you do what he wants.” TLB
Is God in you? Pray the sinners prayer, admit sin, ask for His help, ask Jesus into your heart then seek His Holy Spirit more fully.
“Lord Jesus, I admit I’m a sinner, I need your forgiveness, please include my sins with those sins for which you died. Come into my life, help me to be all that you want me to be, come into my heart and let my spirit be born again into Your Holy Spirit, put my feet on the straight path and always guide me in thought word and deed. Thank you Jesus.”
If you prayed that prayer with sincerity, you may now claim the Scripture:
Phil 2:13 “For God is at work within you, helping you want to obey him, and then helping you do what he wants.” TLB
What do you say Pastors: will you preach self-examination and repentance to our church families?
Individuals: are we ready to seek God’s help in this?
God’s blessings be upon us as we work through things with Jesus!
Think of others as better than ourselves? Don’t Be So Easily Fooled!
2,000 words – by Mary A. LaClair
Are believers in Christ to be lower than commoners or as Scriptures tell us, are we to be kings and priests?
Phil 2:3 “Do nothing from selfishness or conceit, but in humility count others better than yourselves.” RSV
1 Peter 2:9-10 “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God,that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”
If we, the people of God, are a royal priesthood and a holy nation, then we are not lesser than others! HOW does one reconcile these two verses? If you know, please pass it on! Are we lower than commoners or are we kings and priests?
God calls His chosen, those who answer His call, to be priests and kings. How, then, or why, are we to think of others as better than ourselves? Thinking of others as just as good as us is one thing. But, better than ourselves. This is a hard saying. I believe that when God has elevated His repentant and forgiven ones to priests and kings, and we bow to others – thinking them better than us, we can actually nullify God’s wishes and nullify the authority which He gives us. By doing this we hinder His work. Luke 10:1-18
I struggled for many years with the Scripture which says ‘think of others as better than yourselves’, because there were times when God asked me to do something and I felt there were others who were better suited, so I avoided the task. Wrong ! Just what the devil wanted me to do. So, I went checking many translations of Scripture hoping to find a version which clarified this. I was disappointed. Commentaries skipped it. I asked a Pastor, but did not get a satisfactory answer there either. I struggled with it to the point where I was finally telling God that I thought someone had made a mistake. He did not answer for quite awhile. But, I actually felt He was smiling while I waited for His answer. It is God’s privilege to conceal and His privilege to reveal. This is how Scripture can last us a life time.
Prov 25:2 It is the glory of God to conceal a matter; to search out a matter is the glory of kings. ” ‘NIV
At Bible Study, when the ‘others better than yourself’ came up, a recovering alcoholic with self-esteem problems was in attendance. She was immediately downcast. I knew well that some of the older ladies there were not thinking her better then they. This special lady had taken one step forward and now two steps back.
I challenged the teachers by telling her that it simply meant that we were not to think less of ourselves, but to think of ourselves just as good as others, and others just as good as us. She smiled when I told her it was not meant to demean us but that Jesus has made us priests and kings. Think of yourself that way first and foremost. When she went home I hope she did not drown low esteem in a bottle. That lady thanked me. The teachers did not. If I was clever, I could have said, “These ladies are thinking of you as being better than themselves” but it did not occur to me at the time, and it may not have been true.
A pastor curtly told me that it meant that we were to treat others the same way Jesus treated us. That may be good advice but it did not simplify this particular Scripture. Maybe it does for you. I believed then, and still believe now, we need to act like priests and kings (1 Peter 2:9-10), especially if we are told that is what we are. And we are told. We are ambassadors of Christ, and should act like it.
Ryan Dobson says in his book: “It’s OK To Be Intolerant: Because some things are just stupid” :
Eph 5:15 “Be careful therefore how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise.”
Matt. 16:6 “Watch out and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”
Matt: 10:16 “Behold I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.”
My husband is often heard saying: “There are only two people I trust, you and me, and I’m not so sure about you!” Good advice.
We, who are full of Christ, should not let ourselves be over-ruled by the un-godly, thinking the un-godly better than ourselves. This is happening. It is not working. This is the danger of mis-interpreting this particular Scripture. God gives us wisdom, we need to be glad of it. We should use it, not hide it under a bushel. The secret is in realizing what Wisdom comes from Him.
What now about that troubling Bible verse? Did God ever answer? Yes, yes, He did. When I least expected it He dropped the answer in my lap. DayStar TV’s was the channel REFLECTIONS: Scripture overwritten on beautiful scenery, with soft music was the program. One day, that particular verse ‘just happened’ to come up the very moment I turned on TV. And instantly , it seems, the lights came on. It was an “A-Ha” moment.
Phil 2:3 “Do nothing from selfishness or conceit, but in humility count others better than yourselves.” RSV
To whom is this verse addressed? This verse is addressing the selfish and the conceited. It is not addressing anyone else!
It might as well say:
Attention you who are selfish and proud, listen up! Do nothing from greed or pride, instead consider others better than yourself.
It is addressed to the ‘selfish and proud’. It is not addressed to all believers in general.
If the first half of that verse doesn’t apply to you, don’t worry about the second half.
We should know who we are in Christ – as the redeemed, we are the head and not the tail. Never give in or agree with those who would try to re-interpret our Christianity for us because of our lack of knowledge.
Hos 4:6 “My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge.” NIV
Notice to whom this is addressed: “My people…” Hmmm…
Neither are we to relinquish our wisdom in the name of ‘tolerance’. Being a people pleaser can make us guilty of making people our god. Our job is to please God.
I would like to recommend two books:
1. Ryan Dobson: BE INTOLERANT – because some things are just stupid
2. O.S.Hawkins: THE DANIEL CODE – living out truth in a culture losing its way
The devil will twist Scripture and try to get us to mis-interpret God’s Word. He did it to Jesus in the dessert, he does it to us. We, as priests and kings, can be bold and courageous when we know God is with us. Deut 31:6; Joshuah1:9.
What we are talking about is not giving away our position of priests and kings – not relinquishing our knowledge and wisdom. The devil wants us to think all others are better than we are (the accuser of the brethren) and he will often use this Scripture, mis-representing it, as he mis-represented Scripture to Jesus in the dessert. Case in point: when they say ‘you must be tolerant’ we must remember that we are to be salt and light, not bending to the immoral ills of society.
Google the word ‘tolerant’ or ‘tolerate’ in Scripture. You will find it in Rev chapter three. God has this against one of the churches: “I have this against you, you tolerate those who…”
Phil 2:3 “When you do things, do not let selfishness or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble and give more honor to others than to yourselves.” NCV New Contemporary Version
The word instead denotes a prior condition. Instead means instead: If you are not doing A, you don’t need to do B instead.
The first half did not apply to our friend, so the second half did not apply. At that time, I just didn’t know how to explain it to her in this way
We, as Priests and Kings, abdicate our authority and power in Christ when we think of others as better than ourselves when they are not. It can also lead to anarchy. To do so, negates our necessity to bring others to repentance, as Jesus did, and as He instructs us to do.
To whom is this being addressed? The words ‘being motivated’ denote an ongoing process.
Can we see from this that when reading Scripture, it is always good to read the verse and ask “To whom is this being addressed?”
If it talks about a ‘believer’ or a ‘whomsoever’, one may put their own name in, because then it’s often addressed to us as individuals.
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have eternal life.” ASV
Be a ‘whosoever’ today, but don’t be a selfish, prideful whosoever. (<:
Can’t get this Josh Turner song out of my mind regarding this writing:
“ I treated that bad woman good; Lord, I need a good woman, bad.”
The proof is in; it doesn’t always pay to treat bad people good. Isaiah 26:10 also comes to mind:
“Though mercy is shown to the unrepentant, …” :
Isa 26:10 “Even though you are kind to wicked men, they never learn to do what is right. Even here in a land of righteous people they still do wrong; they refuse to recognize your greatness.” TEV
Isa 26:10 “Though the wicked is shown favor, He does not learn righteousness; He deals unjustly in the land of uprightness, And does not perceive the majesty of the Lord.“NASU
1 Peter 2:9-10 “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God,that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.10Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.” NIV
Rev 5:9-10 “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and prieststo serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.” NIV
Rev 1:5-6 “To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, 6 and has made us to be a kingdom and prieststo serve his God and Father— to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen. ” NIV
Obadiah 21 “Deliverers will go up on Mount Zion to govern the mountains of Esau. And the kingdom will be the Lord ‘s.” NIV