Friday, November 29, 2013

MATTHEW 6:19-34 (A Post-Thanksgiving Day Word)

Luke 16:
13  “No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money."
14  The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all these things, and they ridiculed him.      15  And he said to them, "You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God.

1  But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty.
2  For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy,

1Timothy 6:
3  If anyone teaches a different doctrine and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching that accords with godliness,
4  he is puffed up with conceit and understands nothing. He has an unhealthy craving for controversy and for quarrels about words, which produce envy, dissension, slander, evil suspicions,
5  and constant friction among people who are depraved in mind and deprived of the truth, imagining that godliness is a means of gain.
6  Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment,
7  for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world.
8  But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content.
9  But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.
10  For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.
11  But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness.

Genesis 14:
17  After his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King's Valley).
18  And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. (He was priest of God Most High.)
19  And he blessed him and said, "Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth;
20  and blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand!" And Abram gave him a tenth of everything.
21  And the king of Sodom said to Abram, "Give me the persons, but take the goods for yourself."
22  But Abram said to the king of Sodom, "I have lifted my hand to the LORD, God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth,
23  that I would not take a thread or a sandal strap or anything that is yours, lest you should say, 'I have made Abram rich.'
24  I will take nothing but what the young men have eaten, and the share of the men who went with me. Let Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre take their share."

Hebrews 13:
5  Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you."
6  So we can confidently say, "The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?"

Php 4:
10  I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity.
11  Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.
12  I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.
13  I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
14  Yet it was kind of you to share my trouble.

1Thess 5:
16  Rejoice always,
17  pray without ceasing,
18  give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Php 4:
6  do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
7  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

It is God's will that we rejoice and pray, with thanksgiving, always in all circumstances,recognizing that the circumstances of our lives find their origin in His sovereignty.

Monday, November 25, 2013

The Spirit of Antichrist

1John 4:
1  Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.
2  By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God,
3  and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.
4  Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.
5  They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them.
6  We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

Who are the “we” referred to by John, and how do we know the Spirit of truth from the spirit of error?  
We are the church, the body of Christ, the temple of the living God. His temple is built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, who are those whom the Lord called to write and proclaim scripture.
The “command” that we must agree to disagree is patently unbiblical, i.e. it is not supported by scripture. If such an assertion is true, then the writers of scripture themselves are unscriptural. Verse 6, in the passage cited above, is one of the boldest statements in scripture.  The scriptures, when read today, mean exactly what they meant when they were originally written, received, and read by the saints. There is no “double meaning”. The Lord did not forget to include certain information which He later revealed through a few “gifted” individuals (neo-gnostics) throughout the ages. 
The spirit of antichrist originates among those who call themselves believers. They depart from the fellowship proclaiming another gospel, another Jesus, by another spirit (antichrist).
John says they were never one of us. (2Cor 11;1-15; 1 John 2: 18-19)
Unfortunately before they leave the true fellowship, they gather many to themselves who follow them into ruin. (1 Timothy 1:18-20)

Acts 20:
28  Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood.
29  I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock;
30  and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them.

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

Jude 1:3  Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. 4  For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

Matthew 7:
15  "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.
16  You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?
17  So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit.
18  A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit.
19  Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
20  Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.

The certainty of biblical prophecy is that they (antichrist) will come, and they will lead many astray; to this very day this is so. The fruit that they we will know them by are not the lying signs and wonders, nor deceptive good works. Their works/miraculous signs will appear to be quite genuine, and so God sends a delusion on them and those that follow them, i.e. those who do not seek the TRUTH.  (2 Thess 2:9-12)  Signs, wonders, the appearance of godliness, etc. are the mechanism of deception. 

John 17:17  Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.

The fruit produced by the bad tree is the speaking of another word, than the one given by God. They proclaim a Jesus that is not found in the scriptures; a gospel which He did not proclaim; a salvation that is not given through Him, all by the spirit of antichrist which rejects the only begotten Son, who came in the flesh from the Father.
Therefore, those who listen to them go into the world with them proclaiming a worldly gospel, e.g. health, wealth, “easy believism”, etc. It is a gospel that is palatable to the world, and the worldly gladly receive it.
The saints are those who are sanctified (set apart) in the Truth (His Word).                                                            
The saints go into all the world and make disciples, that is, they bring into the fellowship those whom the Lord is saving by speaking the Truth.  (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 2: 41-47)

Those who listen to us are of God. Those who do not listen to us are not of God. 

John 6:45  It is written in the Prophets, 'And they will all be taught by God.' Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me--
 John 8:47  Whoever is of God hears the words of God. The reason why you do not hear them is that you are not of God."

Greater is the one who is in the fellowship, than the one who is in the world.   

Monday, November 18, 2013

Prayer: An Expression of Worship

1Thess 5:
16 Rejoice always,
17 pray without ceasing,
18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

These three verses are to be read as one unified statement.
Nowhere is worship made manifest more than in prayer. Prayer according to His will, i.e. Word (1 John 5:14-15) is as much, if not more so, an expression of our worship/obedience, as singing a song, or lifting hands.
The will of God is that we offer joyful, grateful prayer always, in every circumstance; as even the circumstances are His will. The circumstances, as determined by God, provoke such prayer (Psalms 107:23-32)

Romans 8:28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Strong Man Bound - Straw Man Unleashed

Job 1:
20  Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped.
21  And he said, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD."
22  In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.

Job 2:
9  Then his wife said to him, "Do you still hold fast your integrity? Curse God and die."
10  But he said to her, "You speak as one of the foolish women would speak. Shall we receive good from God, and shall we not receive evil?" In all this Job did not sin with his lips.

Interesting that Job wasn’t screaming about a “satanic attack”, (theology du jour in many sects), in the midst of his woes.
The strong man, created by God, revealed in scripture, is bound. (Matthew 12:29; Mark 3:27; Luke 11:21-22; Rev 20:1-3) The straw man of modern Christendom is created by man for the church to kick around.

God is sovereign. Job knew it, the apostle John knew it, and the saints know it. Rev 12:17-13:10

Psalm 112:
6  For the righteous will never be moved; he will be remembered forever.
7  He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD.