Posted in Lessons from the Holy Bible, Listening To God, Seeking Truth?

Turn about Thursday- “A True Workman”

** I initially published this post very early in my blogging experience.  I desired brothers and sisters in Christ to to be equipped for this 21st century Christianity we have with its great deceptions on every front!  We hear people claiming to be Christians on secular news programs, christian television, christian musicians, etc;  disgracing our Heavenly Father, our Savior Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit with lies and chopped up biblical references!  I urge you brethren to be sure what you believe is Truth.  We are only sojourners here…eternity is just ahead! **

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God’s Holy Word is of the utmost importance in the growth of a  Christian’s life, it’s the “food” for our newly created inward man.  So, do we as Christians  SEARCH, STUDY, DILIGENTLY SEEK AND HONOR THE WORD OF OUR GOD as He desires us to?  My immediate answer is NO!!  Now I’m not saying each and every believer is remiss in their time with the Lord in His Word, but in this chaotic, fast paced world we live in, it seems my assessment is close to reality.  Here are some of the reasons I’ve heard people use.  “I am too busy I just don’t have time”,  “it’s hard to understand the Bible, I’m not a preacher”, “I go to church every week and hear my pastor preach the Word that should be enough”,  “I read from my devotional booklet everyday”  and so on. 

My response to all of the above excuses (notice I am calling them excuses here-not reasons) is simple.   First, every minute we live is given to us by God; you don’t have to be a preacher to understand God’s Word, just ask Him to guide you; hearing the Truth of the Word in your church weekly is very important–but it’s not enough and finally reading a devotional is good, but it’s not what the Lord God intended for our lives.  I know this because we are told in Deuteronomy 8:3  “He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD.”  Jesus himself quoted this verse to Satan when He was tempted to turn stones into bread.

Paul wrote to Timothy in his second epistle chapter 2 verse 15 “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”  In the Complete Jewish Bible it says “Do all you can to present yourself to God as someone worthy of His approval, as a worker with no need to be ashamed, because he deals straightforwardly with the Word of the Truth. “

There are three very important spiritual truths in this verse.

First, we need to study the Word of God, not just read.  Study  means to apply one’s mind purposefully to the acquisition of knowledge or understanding and to give careful thought to; contemplate.  Secondly, there is INTENT in Paul’s words here: “…to show thyself approved…”  Approved by man–no!  So that we are approved by God, our Father.  And finally, why this intent study?  Because not only are we His children;  we are His workman.  As His workman we must rightly divide and appropriately understand, apply and give the Gospel to all. John Wesley said “But they that give one part of the gospel to all (the promises and comforts to unawakened, hardened, scoffing men) have real need to be ashamed.”

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2 Timothy 3: 16-17  “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”  NIV

2 Timothy 4:2  “Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage — with great patience and careful instruction.”  NIV

Romans 10:17  “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.”  KJV

Hebrews 11:6  “But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that comes to God must believe that he is , and that He  rewards them that diligently seek him.”  KJV

My prayer is for all believers to become True Workman for the Lord God Almighty and our Savior Jesus Christ.  We must use God’s Word daily to correctly live our lives in this present time.  There are far too many deceivers and wolves in the churches today.  Do you truly know what you believe in written in the Word of God.. or has some ‘person(s)’ told you what you believe.  Hold up everything you read and hear up to the Light of Scripture. ♥ Streim

R. A. Torrey summed it up very well “Do not study commentaries, lesson helps or other books about the Bible: study the Bible itself. Do not study about the Bible, study the Bible. The Bible is the Word of God, and only the Bible is the Word of God.”

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Posted in Listening To God, Seeking Truth?, The Gospel

Selfishly Indulgent Naturally

S–I–N

Selfishly Indulgent Naturally

I thought if I could contrive an anagram for the simple word “SIN”…folks may be more apt to read this.  I find it very sad that so many ministers of the Word, teachers, authors, missionaries and everyday Christian folk don’t like the sound of this word.  They would rather use the term mistake.  “We all make mistakes, of course we do”  sounds nicer than “We all sin, of course we do”.  Using the word sin must “sting the ears”!  Sin is one of those words we hear very, very little of anymore in the churches and ministries across this country regardless of the denomination.

Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3-4 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” (KJV) 

The English Standard Version’s says “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.”

I believe that time is NOW!  We hear much about God’s love, and rightfully we should.  We know that God Himself is love! However, the emphasis on God’s love without teaching the truth of His holiness is error.  God the Father is also righteous judge.  We are told repeatedly in Scripture He will one day pass judgement on all mankind.  Each person! (Psalms 76)  Those calling themselves Christians (those who KNOW the love of God through Jesus Christ and salvation/redemption by His blood) should not only teach of love but of sin and God’s judgement.  Allowing the Holy Spirit to use the Word of God –in ALL it’s truth, to bring non-believers to a saving faith in Jesus Christ.

When the Apostle Paul traveled to Rome he spoke with all authority from God.

Romans 1: 19-25 “For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them.  For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.  For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.  Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.  Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. 

Teaching that God is tolerant of sin is absurd and heresy!!    God hates sin.   He is merciful, patient, loving beyond human understanding towards all the world (John 3:16), but HE IS NOT TOLERANT of sin.  He LOVES the sinner and HATES the sin.  If we truly want to share the love of God … then we must share what His love did to reconcile us to Himself and why that reconciliation was needed.   If we don’t share the complete Gospel of Jesus Christ… then we’re loving in man’s ways not God’s way!  ♥ Streim

 Apathy is the acceptance of the unacceptable. J. Stott

Posted in Listening To God, Living in Today's World, Seeking Truth?

Obedience

I remember singing an old hymn/children’s song (?)  “Trust and obey, for there’s no other way, to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey”.  That’s all I remember.  I think maybe because that’s one of the most important principles in the Christian’s life.  In this passage from Acts 4, Peter gave us the REASON why!

 

Acts 4:29-42  But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men. The God of our fathers raised Jesus, whom you killed by hanging him on a tree.  God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.  And we are witnesses to these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him.”  When they heard this, they were enraged and wanted to kill them.  But a Pharisee in the council named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law held in honor by all the people, stood up and gave orders to put the men outside for a little while.  And he said to them, “Men of Israel, take care what you are about to do with these men.  For before these days Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody, and a number of men, about four hundred, joined him. He was killed, and all who followed him were dispersed and came to nothing.  After him Judas the Galilean rose up in the days of the census and drew away some of the people after him. He too perished, and all who followed him were scattered. So in the present case I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone, for if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail;  but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God!” So they took his advice,  and when they had called in the apostles, they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.  Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.  And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.

Psalm 35:9 “And my soul shall be joyful in the LORD.  It shall rejoice in His salvation.”  My prayer is that every adopted blood bought child of the LORD God will stand strong in Him.  We will KNOW true joy in our Savior and Lord through obedience to the Word… and NOT through our feelings!  ♥ Streim