There are only two religions in the entire world. There is genuine Christianity and then every other form of religiosity including humanism and atheism. All but genuine Christianity are opposed to the truth and are part of the rebellion against the sovereignty of God. Genuine Christianity is made up of those who have been redeemed from the slave market of iniquity. This slave market preys on people and keeps them in bondage to the flesh. On the other hand, Genuine Christianity, which is the Church, is spiritual. …
6 Seek the Lord while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near. 7 Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the Lord, And He will have mercy on him; And to our God, or He will abundantly pardon. 8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. 9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:6-9 (NKJV)
The emergent movement and actually all forms of “Christianity” that has a problem with preaching the whole Gospel and the Law in order to “remain relevant” and to “not offend” seekers, such as the Purpose Driven paradigm are, in fact, repeating a very old error. As we study Genesis 11 we see the gathering together of all people into one group by the settlers of Babel in disobedience to God’s commands. …
4 The Lord is in His holy temple, The Lord’s throne is in heaven; His eyes behold, His eyelids test the sons of men. 5 The Lord tests the righteous, But the wicked and the one who loves violence His soul hates. Psalms 11:4-5 (NKJV)
According to some professing Christians, if anything unpleasant comes into their lives then it proves that God is displeased with them. They say it proves that God is punishing them. Also, they proclaim that the ones suffering are simply victims in the ongoing battle between God and Satan. Is there another explanation? Let’s see!
4 And we have such trust through Christ toward God. 5 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God, 6 who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. 2 Corinthians 3:4-6 (NKJV)
It seems that most of what we post here has to do with the Gospel. It is vital that we do that. On the other hand, the way we handle it here and the way we demand that it be handled in our churches has, at times, been quite unpopular with certain people who have issues with preaching the Gospel and law together as well as how genuine Christians are called to walk in repentance until they are taken home to be with the Lord forever. …
A voice of one calling:
In the wilderness prepare the way for the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain.(Isaiah 40:3-4)
This passage defines the ministry of John the Baptist, the forerunner of our Lord. He was to declare that when the Messiah came, his ministry would not only be one of reconciliation, but also one of reconstruction. He declared there would be a highway, built in the heart, on which God would travel. Four steps would be involved in the building process:
Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. Construction engineers know that this is exactly how highways are built even today.
25 “These things I have spoken to you while being present with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. John 14:25-26 (NKJV)
On the night prior to our Lord’s crucifixion and death, He promised that He and the Father would send to His disciples the Helper, the παράκλητος, the Holy Spirit. This Greek word, translated as Helper, means a lawyer or assistant in a legal question. Its Biblical context, however, describes a person who provides encouragement, counsel, and strength. In John 16:7-11, which will be the focus of this post, our Lord promises to send “another” παράκλητος, One like Himself who will carry on after Him the teaching and testimony that He began.
19 But at night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, 20 “Go, stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this life.” Acts 5:19-20 (NKJV) 6 So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. 7 For we walk by faith, not by sight. 8 We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord. 2 Corinthians 5:6-8 (NKJV)
Learning, knowing, and then responding according to God’s will to His truth is NEVER done subjectively. No, we are told that those who are truly in Christ walk by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:6). To do this we must know God’s truth and respond by faith and this is not done through mysticism or feelings. … Continue reading
The key to understanding the complex issue of the Roman Catholic Church is to realize that their unique doctrine of the papacy is the very heart of this religious system. In this article we will examine in depth from their own sources what the Church of Rome claims for her pontiff, and contrast this with what the Bible itself tells us about the Cornerstone that the true universal Christian Church is in fact built upon.
The Scripture Says
Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. Matthew 16:16-18
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government will be upon his shoulders, and he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)
What a remarkable picture! It hardly needs any exposition. Suddenly, after a great time of trouble, the nation will realize that this glorious King, their Messiah, once came as a little child:
to us a child is born. He who was for eternity the Son of God was
given to them as a little Baby in Bethlehem. They recognize at last, after centuries of rejection, that this One rightly deserves divine titles. This is Immanuel,
God with us.…
Prayer is hard. For me, consistent prayer has always been a battle, a fight. One of the most difficult things for fallen people to do is to come to God on bent knees with empty hands; as one put it, “I am loath to come to prayer, and when I’m there I am loath to stay.”
Yet some things cannot be put off. I cannot pray today’s prayers tomorrow. Tomorrow has its own demands. Disciples follow disciplines—tasks they wrestle with each day, every day. Making peace with that fact was a step toward my own consistency.
Here is how I pray. Continue reading
The really pardoned man also desires to be rid of all sin. I know some who can never hope to obtain forgiveness, for they continue in their iniquity. Can a woman expect to find peace with God while she goes on taking her sly drop and becoming intoxicated in private? Can a man find joy in God who still clings to the drunkard’s vice? Will God receive into his favor those who continue to practice dishonesty in trade? Shall sin be fondled and yet pardoned? No one dares to expect it, and yet deceitful hearts attempt to think so. They will condemn other people’s pet sins, and yet excuse their own. They pretend to much sorrow for sin in. general, and yet hold to one favourite sin in particular. Their delicate Agag must live. Kill all the rest, but surely as to this one the bitterness of death has passed! Continue reading
How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of Dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You said in your heart, I will ascend to heaven, I will raise my throne on high above the stars of God… But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit. (Isaiah 14:12, 13a, 14)
These verses describe a supernatural figure who, in the invisible world of the spirit, is behind the earthly kingdom of Babylon. We are here looking at what has been called
the fall of Satan.Lucifer, the brightest and most beautiful of the angels of God, the nearest to his throne, became so entranced with his own beauty that he rebelled against the government of God and thus became the adversary, Satan. Here he is seen as brought, at last, to the bottomless pit.
Compromise is the order of the day. When God’s Word is forsaken and replaced with the subjectivity of Man’s wisdom then what do you expect? When so-called “Evangelical leaders” can ignore what Sacred Scripture says very clearly about Homosexuality being a sin just like murder and that no practicing homosexual will inherit the Kingdom of God and still call what they teach “Christianity” well then what we must understand is that what we are dealing with are people who want to be included as practicing Christians while remaining unrepentant of their sins. …
A shoot will come from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit. The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him—the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of might, the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord—and he will delight in the fear of the Lord. (Isaiah 11:1-2)
It is not difficult for us to see that this is a clear prediction of the Lord Jesus. Here in these opening verses is a hint that the Messiah will appear in history in a very obscure way. That is suggested by this word,
A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse. Like a great tree that has been cut down, the ancestry of Jesus represented in David and his father Jesse has been reduced to obscurity and insignificance. …
1 Moreover the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Go and cry in the hearing of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord: “I remember you, The kindness of your youth, The love of your betrothal, When you went after Me in the wilderness, In a land not sown. 3 Israel was holiness to the Lord, The firstfruits of His increase. All that devour him will offend; Disaster will come upon them,” says the Lord.’ ” Jeremiah 2:1-3 (NKJV)
Christian, think back to those early days of your walk with the Lord. Your entire value system seemed to be turned upside-down. You loved God and your devotion to your Saviour was the most important thing in your life. Old sins had no power over you. You were full of joy and wanted only to serve the Lord Jesus with your all. At the same time, you also discovered that your relationships changed. You could love others with a deeper and more sincere love that was active and compassionate. Would this describe your relationship with the Lord Jesus and all those around you today?
14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. 15 John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said, He who comes after me is preferred before me, for He was before me.’ ” 16 And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace. John 1:14-16 (NKJV)
There is a certain hysteria currently amongst many of our 21st Century Puritans. While I gladly count myself as a Puritan, I also know that our enemy desires to shackle and nullify our witness and divert our focus by feeding our heightened perceptions as to what is godly and what is false with misleading and derogatory information that cause us to turn on one another. Having experienced this against my own ministry since its inception I can say that it is very frustrating and eye opening.
11 For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another, 12 not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s righteous. 13 Do not marvel, my brethren, if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death. 15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 1 John 3:11-15 (NKJV)
At least once every few weeks I encounter a “brother” or “sister” in the Lord whose “ministry” seems to be to generate as much hatred as possible within the visible Church for some other Christian or group of Christians. …
3 knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, 4 and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” 2 Peter 3:3-4 (NKJV)
It is one thing to say, “Come soon Lord Jesus!” and quite another thing to live as if you mean it. There are even some today who are of the “progressive” mindset that teach we should live this life with our focus on the here and now rather than eternity. Why? This is to create a better world or make this world a better place. …
Come now, let us settle the matter, says the Lord.
Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool. If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the good things of the land; but if you resist and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken. (Isaiah 1:18-20)
When we read Isaiah 1, there is a problem immediately evident. God’s analysis of the human race is that we are fundamentally tainted with self-centeredness so that we do not want to do good. We only want to minister to our own needs and our own lives. As a solution, God says in v. 16,
Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your doings from before my eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do good. But, the question arises, how can evil people do good things?
5 Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith, 6 from which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk, 7 desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say nor the things which they affirm. 8 But we know that the law is good if one uses it lawfully, 9 knowing this: that the law is not made for a righteous person, but for the lawless and insubordinate, for the ungodly and for sinners, for the unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, 10 for fornicators, for sodomites, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine, 11 according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God which was committed to my trust. 1 Timothy 1:5-11 (NKJV)
Carefully read the passage I placed at the top of this post. What is the aim of the charge of a true discipler? It is to produce the good fruit of love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. That is the good fruit of genuine prophet of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. On the other hand, our Lord Himself told us in His Sermon on the Mount how to discern whether a prophet was false or not.
8 Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous; 9 not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing. 10 For “He who would love life And see good days,Let him refrain his tongue from evil, And his lips from speaking deceit.11 Let him turn away from evil and do good; Let him seek peace and pursue it. 12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their prayers; But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” 1 Peter 3:8-12 (NKJV)
This era of the Church is one of extreme deception due to compromise with the standards and focus of the world. Separation between the Church and the world is not being kept. Instead, the holy barrier between the two has been breached as false prophets have welcomed in not only the world and its ways into their churches. Not only that, but they have also embraced the mysticism of the Eastern religions. …
In John 3:1-21 our Lord spoke the words of God to “a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews.” In this passage our Lord clears the table and tells it like it is. He tells Nicodemus in v3, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Of course, Nicodemus doesn’t “get it” at first and asks, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” in v4 and, “How can these things be?” in v9. In between those two perplexed questions, our Lord, the Λόγος or logos or Word, the living Christian proclamation as a whole of the New Testament proclaimed τὰ ῥήματα τοῦ θεοῦ or “the words of God” to Nicodemus in a way that he had never heard before. …
14 “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16 (NKJV)
Probably the quickest and/or easiest way for a Christian to discover the truth of the incredible depth and breadth of spiritual darkness in this present world is to stand firm on God’s Truth, and within that firm stand, tell that truth boldly to professing Christians. It will not take very long for those who hold to a version of Christianity that is apostate to make the reality of their spiritual darkness known in ways accompanied by fiery darts from our enemy. …
4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of his great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in the trespasses, he made us alive with Christ — by grace you have been saved — 6 and he raised us with him and seated us with him in the heavenlies in Christ Jesus 7 that he might display in the coming ages the surpassing wealth of his grace in his kindness towards us in Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2:4-7 (translated from the NA28 Greek text)
In this post we will focus on our wonderful God with worshipful, grateful hearts. Back several years ago when I was confronted with Reformation Theology, I was amazed that the passages that the Holy Spirit used to “nail it” firmly in my heart were not only those that best lined up with the Bible in all areas of Reformed doctrine, but were also many if not all of the same passages that I had taught from, memorized in Evangelism Explosion training, and read every day during my devotions. …
As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.” (John 9:1-3)
The disciples had evidently been taught that sin and hurt, injury and handicap are linked together; that human hurt is the result of human sin. Notice that Jesus does not deny that. It is helpful to note right from the beginning that he recognizes there is such a link. However, it is not the one that many people think, as he will make clear.