The Calves of Jeroboam and Depression

1Therefore, if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. 3 For you died and your life has been hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is our life, is manifested, then you also will be manifested with Him in glory. Colossians 3:1-7 (LSB) Read verses 5-6 on the site.

We are born from our mothers’ wombs depraved and separated from God because we are sinners. Unless God intervenes in our lives we will be self-absorbed and temporally focused in every part of our lives. We are “depraved” because we desperately seek fulfillment from our only avenue open to us for any circumstance which will tell us we are special or deserving of a positive “feeling” of contentment or fulfillment…. Continue reading

Worldly Wisdom vs God’s Absolute Gospel Truth

1 But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves. 2 And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned. 3 And in their greed they will exploit you with false words, their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.2 Peter 2:1-3 (LSB) 

I worked for many years as a computer programmer and database developer. There are many developers who are team people who are not very creative, but their proficiency at coding makes them very useful in working on very large applications where the work is divided up along functional lines…. Continue reading

Works righteousness is man’s default religion

13 But go and learn what is the meaning of this; I desire mercy and not sacrifice, for I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners. Matthew 9:13 (translated from the NA28 Greek text)

Works righteousness is man’s default religion. The Jews mostly misunderstood the Old Testament sacrificial system. The point of the sacrifice was the taking away of sin and the pointing to the perfect sacrifice that would come in Christ, but most had turned it into a form of works righteousness. Continue reading

What does it mean to be alive in Christ?

7 But have nothing to do with worldly fables fit only for old women. On the other hand, discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness; 8 for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. 1 Timothy 4:7-8 (NASB) 

In the passage above (1 Timothy 4:7-8) the Apostle Paul used the Greek noun εὐσέβειαν (eusebeian) in v8, which is translated here as “godliness.” What is godliness? The noun eusebeian in this context is the accusative, singular, feminine case of εὐσέβεια (eusebeia), which describes the condition of devotion and piety toward God…. Continue reading

All Scripture is God-breathed

16 All Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness, 17 so that the man of God may be equipped, having been thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (LSB) 

Over the years that this blog has been online I have received numerous negative comments from people that I have never allowed to be posted. Why? It is because those who made those comments either do not bother to follow the rules clearly posted, which are assiduously enforced, or they have failed to read them…. Continue reading

Sola Scriptura

12 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 (NASB) 

“We affirm that the text of Scripture is to be interpreted by grammatico-historical exegesis, taking account of its literary forms and devices, and that Scripture is to interpret Scripture. We deny the legitimacy and any treatment of the text or quest for sources lying behind it that leads to relativizing, dehistoricizing, or discounting its teaching, or rejecting its claims to authorship.” – Article XVIII of The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy October 1978 Continue reading

Is the apostate church in our time the scarlet woman?

1 “And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: This is what He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars, says: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead. 2 Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die, for I have not found your deeds complete in the sight of My God. Revelation 3:1-2 (LSB) 

When my dad died in 2010 I inherited my grandfather’s Bible. My grandfather was a remarkable man. He was born in 1877 and became a preacher of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ in the 1890’s in Indian Territory, which is now Oklahoma. My grandfather preached from this Bible well into the 1950’s. It is full of notes and his own cross-references. However, there is one thing in the Bible that no one, apparently, knew was there…. Continue reading

As For The One Who Is Weak In Faith, Welcome Him, But Not To Quarrel Over Opinions

15 To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure, but both their mind and their conscience are defiled. Titus 1:15 (LSB) 

I am constantly amazed at the diversity I witness in the believers who interact with this ministry. This, of course, displays Christ’s power to bring together in unity dissimilar people from every place on this planet and from all walks of life. Part of our sanctification is dealing with our unredeemed flesh…. Continue reading

Prayer

1 And it happened that while Jesus was praying in a certain place, after He had finished, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John also taught his disciples.” 2 And He said to them, “When you pray, say: ‘Father, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. 3 Give us each day our daily bread. 4 And forgive us our sins, For we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation.’” Luke 11:1-4 (LSB) 

Prayer is a vital part of our Christian walk before the face of God. I have never met a mature Christian who was at peace with the consistency or depth of his or her praying. Sacred Scripture says that God commands His people to pray. I have often wondered why God wants us to pray since He knows everything already. He knows what we need already the Word says, so why should we have to pray, asking Him for what we need?… Continue reading

Peter’s Sermon at Pentecost

14 But Peter, taking his stand with the eleven, raised his voice and declared to them: “Men of Judea and all you who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you and give heed to my words. 15 For these men are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is the third hour of the day; 16 but this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel: Acts 2:14-21 (LSB) Read verses 17-21 on the site.

Thus began the Apostle Peter’s sermon following the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost just 10 days following our Lord’s Ascension. I am going to walk through this sermon with you so that we can see how the Gospel works when preached with power and with the right focus. Who is being glorified in vv14-21 above?… Continue reading

True Rest

7 Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. 38 He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” 39 But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were going to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified. John 7:37-39 (LSB)

Read Matthew 5:3-12 on the site.

Hell is real. All who do not repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ will spend eternity there. Those who repent and believe are those who ‘come to Jesus to drink.’ They believe as the Holy Spirit is poured out on them to the point that their lives are taken over by Him. Those who do will never experience hell. Instead, they come to Jesus and find rest for their souls…. Continue reading

What is Joy?

21 When my heart was embittered And I was pierced within, 22 Then I was senseless and ignorant; I was like an animal before You. 23 Nevertheless I am continually with You; You have taken hold of my right hand. 24 With Your counsel You will lead me, And afterward take me in glory. 25 Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. 26 My flesh and my heart fail, But God is the rock of my heart and my portion forever. Psalms 73:21-26 (LSB) 

Undoubtedly, there is much confusion about that little three-letter word “joy.” Is it simply a deeper form of happiness? Is it the opposite of sadness or depression? The secular perception of joy is “lasting happiness.” However, the Bible interprets joy very differently…. Continue reading

Confession Apart from Obedience is Worthless

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Matthew 7:21 (LSB)

There are many false teachings in our time within the visible Church. What we must never forget is that there is nothing new under the Sun. The heresies we encounter now are actually very old. Some have been around a long time in their current form while others are recycled versions of an older heresy that was dealt with hundreds of years ago. Why should our enemy and his seed come up with new attacks when the old ones wreak havoc, deepen spiritual blindness, and keep people mired in man-made religiosity instead of becoming spirit-filled, obedient Christians? Continue reading

Oneness

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Now those who belong to Christ Jesus crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk in step with the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-25 (LSB) 

On one hand, we are commanded in Sacred Scripture to stand firm while holding to God’s truth as “The Truth” with no exceptions. On the other hand, we are also commanded in the same Word of God to walk in unity with the whole Body of Christ. Unfortunately, many today insist on the latter while teaching that in order to obey it we must totally neglect the former…. Continue reading

Sufficiency

Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, as some, letters of commendation to you or from you? 2 You are our letter, having been written in our hearts, known and read by all men, 3 being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, ministered to by us, having been written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of hearts of flesh.12 Corinthians 3:1-6 (LSB) Read verses 4-5 on the site.

In these post-modern times, man views himself as the measure of all things. I was doing research last night for yesterday’s post which included a reference to the Jesus Seminar. That meant I had to look at videos and read things from people I would normally never even consider it worth my time to do so. They brag in the promotion of their videos how they have debunked the claims of Christians like us that Jesus is the Son of God, was Born of a virgin, lived a sinless life and after he was crucified and died, He was resurrected on the 3d day…. Continue reading

Authentic Christians in the World

Last night in our Small Group we were discussing how each of us spend time in the Word and prayer on a daily basis in order to draw closer to God and surrender more and more so that we will become the disciples our Lord wants us to be. When my turn came, I made the statement that, yes, I did start each day in the Word and prayer and reading devotions from Charles Spurgeon, Oswald Chambers, and Ligonier Ministries, but I believed that the thing that helped me the most was the research I did in preparation to write these posts. I must admit that usually I begin with one thing in mind that I want to write about, but it more often than not, changes as I develop a post…. Continue reading

Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me

Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me—to keep me from exalting myself! 8 Concerning this I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might leave me. 9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast in my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 10 Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions and hardships, for the sake of Christ, for when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:7-10  Read Philippians 4:10-13 on the site.

What ails the Church the most at this time in the early 21st Century is actually the root of most, if not all, of the growing apostasy we are witnessing. This ailment is the product of decades upon decades of poor doctrine and man-serving preaching and teaching. God has given the Church, except for His Remnant, a spirit of stupor that has blinded them so that they have believed the lie that the center of all things is not Christ, but themselves…. Continue reading

The High Calling of God

1 Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, 2 of teaching about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment. Hebrews 6:1-2 (LSB) 

Many years ago, my wife and I were members of the same church we belong to now, but it was much smaller back then and the leadership was completely different than it is now. It was also at a completely different location. We had been members there for several years when we got a new pastor. I was a deacon and a Bible teacher…. Continue reading

Redeeming Our Time in This Evil Age

15 See therefore how carefully you walk not as unwise but as wise, 16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil. (translated from the NA28 Greek text)

There is a great deal going on the visible church, much of it having little to do with genuine Christianity, that most of us can do little about. Yes, we can pray, which is very powerful. We can also obey God and expose the evil to other believers. However, the older I get in the faith the outrage over much of what people like Rob Bell or Rick Warren say or write I no longer allow to consume me. I know what my role is in the Truth War. Do you know what yours is? For most of us it is to obey what the Apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesian church in Ephesians 5:1-21. Continue reading

Discernment, heresy, and apostasy

 

10 Reject a factious man after a first and second warning, 11 knowing that such a man is perverted and is sinning, being self-condemned. Titus 3:10-11 (LSB) 

True Biblical discernment is crucial for the spiritual health of the Body of Christ because there has and always will be a plague of false teaching and teachers upon it until our Lord’s return. If you have ever flown on public transportation and had to go through the entire TSA screening process then you know how unpleasant that is…. Continue reading

What does it mean to be devoured by Satan?

8 Be of sober spirit, be watchful. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8 (LSB) 

I have written several posts about heresy and apostasy. However, I have always been puzzled by those believers who were once very effective in ministry or serving our Lord with Christ focused walks, but then something changed. Those men and women once very effective in ministry seemed to stumble badly or they who once stood firm now seemed be willing to compromise in areas of doctrine or they once stood against invasion of the world into “church,” but now seem to be all for it in one way or another. What happened? I know that many of us are willing to throw out the “apostate” label in these cases, but is that what really happened? Continue reading

Adultery in the Heart

4 Whoever therefore will humble himself as this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 And whoever receives one such child in My name receives Me; 6 but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it is better for him that a heavy millstone be hung around his neck, and that he be drowned in the depth of the sea. 7 “Woe to the world because of its stumbling blocks! For it is inevitable that stumbling blocks come; nevertheless, woe to that man through whom the stumbling block comes! Matthew 18:4-10 (LSB) Read verses 8-10 on the site.

This fallen world is diametrically opposed to God and His ways in every part. Even those of us who have been delivered through the redemptive work of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life in Him can find ourselves at times with a temporal focus, which causes us to make compromises in our walks. Continue reading

Judgment before the Great white Throne

9 “I kept looking Until thrones were set up, And the Ancient of Days was seated; His clothing was like white snow And the hair of His head like pure wool. His throne was ablaze with fire, Its wheels were a burning fire. 10 A river of fire was flowing And coming out from before Him; Thousands upon thousands were attending Him, And myriads upon myriads were standing before Him; The court sat, And the books were opened. Daniel 7:9-10 (LSB) 

Before we look at Revelation 20:11-15, take a moment to reflect on the carnage being wrought upon the visible church in our time by the very men who, by their own positions, should be shepherding the sheep. Instead, they are actually doing the very things to bring about the famine of hearing the Word of God and, hence, spiritual darkness seems to be all around us right in the midst of the “Church.” Continue reading

Who enters into the Lord’s rest?

1 Oh come, let us sing for joy to Yahweh, Let us make a loud shout to the rock of our salvation. 2 Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving, Let us make a loud shout to Him with songs of praise. 3 For Yahweh is a great God And a great King above all gods, 4 In whose hand are the depths of the earth, The peaks of the mountains are His also. 5 The sea is His, for it was He who made it, And His hands formed the dry land. 6 Come, let us worship and bow down, Let us kneel before Yahweh our Maker. Psalms 95:1-11 (LSB) Read verses 7-11 on the site.

Those who insist that we are in a ‘post-evangelical era’ and must, therefore, radically alter not only how we do church in order to reach unbelieving people in our time, also insist that this must be accompanied by a toning down of one’s Christian convictions about the truth. Continue reading

Biblical unity and separation

5 For this reason I left you in Crete, that you would set in order what remains and appoint elders in every city as I directed you, 6 namely, if any man is beyond reproach, the husband of one wife, having faithful children, who are not accused of dissipation, or rebellious. 7 For the overseer must be beyond reproach as God’s steward, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not addicted to wine, not pugnacious, not fond of dishonest gain, 8 but hospitable, loving what is good, sensible, righteous, holy, self-controlled, 9 holding fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the teaching, so that he will be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to reprove those who contradict. Titus 1:5-9 (LSB) 

It doesn’t take very long for me to discern whether the person I am dealing with is truly God’s man or woman or is a pretender. That personal interaction is necessary for me to see the true nature and focus of the person…. Continue reading