Author: Christopher
•10:44 AM



Thought I'd post my thoughts to a great discussion on FB. It let's you know where I stand on a few things. The discussion started with a question about Hebrews 6 and it's interpretation.

Here are my responses:


"I'll bite :) I always liked the hypothetical 'if' argument. Paul often argues from the 'hypothetically speaking' standpoint, and here he says that "IF" someone did lose their salvation, they'd be toast because there'd be no further source... of salvation.

1 John 2:9 is a great commentary on this verse. "They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us." Here John tells us that IF people who are 'saved' then become 'unsaved', it was because they were never 'saved' to begin with. They were professors and not possessors, as the saying goes.

IF a person could go out from us, who had been of us, then John's verse would be a lie. But God's word is truth, and therefore IF someone goes out from us, it's because they were never actually part of us to begin with.

And therefore, Hebrews 6 is hypothetical, not literal.

"But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak." Hebrews 6"

-------

2nd post:

"I read "They Shall Never Perish" by Strombeck when I was newly saved. Awesome.

He argues that to 'walk away' from salvation, we'd have to somehow un-birth ourselves from God's family, and re-birth ourselves back into Adam's family. However..., the only way to re-birth yourself is to die, and we can't do that anymore!

We'd have to recover our sins that were washed away. We'd have to find our old heart and put it back inside of us. We'd have to dis-member the body of Christ of which we are flesh and bone. We'd have to un-join with the Holy Spirit. etc.

Can we make unholy was God has made holy?

It's not a simple case of walking away. You're not just deleting the new programming, you have to re-install the old stuff too. But it doesn't exist anymore!!"

-----

3rd post:

"I want you all to think about that word 'eternity' for a second.

To lose something, or walk away from it, you must do so inside of time. Inside of time, there is a progression of events. But in eternity, all time occurs at once.

God is ...the I AM because he "inhabits eternity" (Isa 57:15). To Him, the past, the present, the future (even to a thousand generations) are all at the same time. Time is a place, more or less, not an event.

Now listen, to be joined with Him for a moment, no matter how brief, is to touch all parts of time. To be saved for a second, is to be saved for eternity. It can't be undone. It is done.

If you are part of Him, you ARE part of the I AM. Your salvation is ever-present just as His life is ever-present.

We cannot undo our eternal life. We'd have to make God to be NOT the great I AM first. We are joined to eternity. And that is for ever."


Hope you liked them. Leave me a comment if you did.






Author: Christopher
•2:07 PM

Philippians 4:19 tells us, "But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus."


What a wonderful promise! What a wonderfully sure supply!

I was thinking about my family. The Lord feeds them. He clothes them. He gives them toys and goodies and warm beds at night to sleep in. And He does it through me. He supplies their needs by me getting up and going to work every day.

They don't work. I work.

By my hand, God provides for them. They just enjoy the blessings.

Now, isn't that a wonderful picture of the Lord Jesus? He does the work. Actually, He DID the work. It's finished now. Everything's been accomplished. And, by HIM, the Father provides for us all good things to enjoy. By HIM, the Father supplies our every need.

We don't work. We just receive. We enjoy the blessings that come to us through him.

Like little children.



Author: Christopher
•3:56 PM
Where's the switch?

There have been many times in my life where I've wished that God operated like a light switch. Do you need healing? Flip the switch. Money? Flip the switch. A new job? A relationship fixed up brand new? Help on a test? Flip the switch.

I've wanted God to operate on a 'cause and effect' basis. I do something, and then God responds by giving me what I need.

But that's called religion.

Religion is a 'cause and effect' view of God. It's impersonal. It's unloving. Do you need financial blessings? Make sure that you tithe. Do you need your kids to grow up into loving adults? Make sure that you take them to church every Sunday. Do you want your prayers answered? Then 'toe the line,' son, and get a haircut.

But that's not God.

I've recently discovered that when we come to God, we come bankrupt. And He gives to us simply because He is good. Have you ever experienced that extremely humbled feeling when someone pays for your car repairs because you can't?

Or, have you ever purchased food with food stamps?

Or, somebody pays your bill because you just don't have the money?

You feel bankrupt. Helpless. Undeserving. Humbled to the point of emptiness. And, yet, you stretch out your hand and take the gift. You know that you can't repay it. But, you also know that you need it.

And, so you LET somebody else pay your way.

They smile. They know its hard for you. And, there's no judgment in their eyes. It's okay. Inside, you're so happy that the need is met. Yes, you're a little angry at yourself for not being able to pay your own way. Yes, your pride is shot. But, you're happy.

"Thank you!" you say. 'You have no idea how much this means,' you finish in your head, silently to yourself.

They smile as if they understand.

You get in the car, and you cry. "Thank you, Jesus! Thank you, Jesus! Thank you, Jesus!" And there's no thought of repayment. You know that you can't. You just receive.



Now, that's how you get things from God. It's not a bartering. It's a humbling. It's letting the most loving Person in the world pay to have your need met. It will leave you breathless from tears, and feeling bankrupt of self-sufficiency.

And, when you lie down on your bed at night, tears will roll down your face.

"Thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Jesus."

It's the key to receiving from God.


Author: Christopher
•3:54 AM
One of the greatest hindrances to my understanding of the Bible was the false doctrine of the Pre-Tribulation Rapture. This teaching is a latter day doctrine of devils.


Okay, I know that's a very harsh statement, but trust me on this. Charles Spurgeon spoke against it when it first came on the scene. So did George Mueller of Bristol. I don't have time to go into all of it right now, but I wanted to get this down in writing for Aidan, Evan and Meagan.

Kids, one of the worst mistakes that you can make is believing all the pretty pictures in Clarence Larkin's book, Dispensational Truth.

When I was first saved, I read your grandfather's copy of this book. After he and mom divorced, Dad had left behind a box with a bunch of books in it, and this was one of them. I was newly saved and believed every word of it, especially since the same Pre-Trib heresy was taught in every other book as well.

It wasn't until many years later, when your mom was pregnant with Evan, that I found the truth. I prayed that the Lord would reveal to me any false doctrines that I might be holding to, and He did. (I highly recommend this prayer every decade or so in your life, but watch out, the Lord will answer it!!)

First, He brought to mind that the New Jerusalem has foundation stones named after NT apostles, and gates named after OT tribes of Israel. That was the key. It opened everything. I began to investigate this seemingly minor point. I found out that John Bunyan who wrote Pilgrim's Progress was a firm believer that the OT saints and the NT saints all belonged to the SAME church. Then I found out that Charles Spurgeon and many of the older saints believed the same thing.

Then, I realized that this was why Abraham could be saved by faith just like me (Romans 4). Spurgeon's comment sticks with me, "Jesus is the Saviour of the body besides which I know not that he is the saviour of any other." In other words, according to Ephesians, Jesus is the Saviour of the body, and if he is the Saviour of the body, then the OT saints must be members of his body, too!!

This led me to discover 'New Covenant Theology.' (If you can find it, read Mark Webb's Parable of the Two Trains; it is the best thing out there on this topic.) There are two historically accepted views of how to understand the Bible. One is called Dispensationalism, and one is called Covenant Theology. I'll let you research those on your own, but what nobody ever told me was that there was a third option. This is called New Covenant Theology.

New Covenant Theology basically teaches that the OT saints were saved, but they lacked the Holy Ghost inside. When they died, they were placed into a holding area to await the Cross. After the Cross, when the Spirit was now available, these were released from Abraham's Bosom when Christ "led captivity captive," i.e. when he took these perfected OT saints up to heaven with him. He couldn't take them up to heaven before this, because they had not yet been perfected.

I just mentioned some really cool stuff there. Hebrews 11 is called the Hall of Faith. It lists the OT saints who showed great faith. It ends with a verse that says, 'That they without us should not be made perfect.' They had to wait for us. They were perfected with us. When did this perfection occur? At the Cross and the giving of the Spirit. The Spirit is Jesus. When He comes inside of us, we get eternal life, righteousness, etc. We are all sealed and baptized into the Church which is his body.

The Spirit allowed those OT saints to finally be perfected, and was also the source of the gifts given to men. That is why the phrase "led captivity captive and gave gifts unto men" is important. It shows that this is about the Spirit being given. The captivity is the OT saints. The men are the NT saints who are still alive.

Well, this whole thing showed your Daddy that there is NO CHURCH AGE as typically taught. The elect of the OT are no different that the elect of the NT. The Church Age is not a parenthetical time where God deals with the Gentiles, blah blah blah.

When you believe in a so-called Church Age that delineates a period of time, you have to find out what the bookends are at the front and back of the thing. So somebody called Pentecost the birth of the church, and then somebody else came along and called the Rapture the removal of the church, and everybody swallowed it. But what the Scriptures teach is that the church, the saints of God, have always been here. Pentecost was an empowering, and an enlivening of the church, for sure, but the people of God have always been here.

Let me back this up real quick for you. Jesus said that he was the Good Shepherd. He said this, "And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd." He talks about the OT sheep, and then talks about other sheep. These new sheep will be added to the first sheep (not be separate from them!), and there will be ONE flock. That is, one body. He spoke this prior to the Cross, and prior to Pentecost. He did not say that he was going to desert the sheep that he then had, and trade them in on a new flock. No, the post-Cross flock will be joined with the pre-Cross flock.

Again, in Romans, the unbelieving branches of the nation of Israel are broken off, and new believing Gentile branches are grafted in. But the Vine and the believing branches are left alone. The NT branches are grafted in to the SAME Vine that is already a source of life for the believing OT branches! Same Root, kids.

That's why the names of the apostles and the names of the tribes of Israel appear on the same New Jerusalem.

With the beginning of the Church Age being suspect, I then looked at the end of the Church Age. I found that the Pre-Trib Rapture is a new contrivance being only a few hundred years old. One of the main biblical supports in my mind for a Pre-Trib Rapture had always been the concept of Daniel’s Seventieth Week, also known as the Time of Jacob’s Trouble. Somebody said that this was time of trouble for Israel, and that the Church must have been removed beforehand.

This it turns out is wrong on so many levels. Not the least is that it creates a fourth category of people called the tribulation saints, where Paul only lists the Jew, the Gentile, and the Church. I won't go into it all now, but it's out there if you want to do some research.

Anyway, I have to go back to sleep. It’s 4:30 in the morning. But listen to your Dad. The Rapture occurs at the Revelation, just moments before. There is a Greek word apentesis which is translated to meet. It means to go out to meet somebody who is arriving and then escort them the rest of the way. It is used in Matthew 25:1 and 25:6, Romans 28:15, and 1 Thess 4:17.

Stop right now, and read those verses. When the Lord returns, He comes to the clouds. He stops. He is in front of the armies of heaven. He shouts, and the last trump is blown. Joel 3:16 says that He "roars" and it is referring to this 'military shout.' The angels of God gather together the saints up to meet him in the air (with the intent of escorting him the rest of the way to the earth!). Matthew 24:31 talks about this, too. As you can see from Matthew 24, this rapture is AT the Revelation.

The Church will see the Antichrist FIRST (read 2 Thess 2). The Antichrist will persecute the Church, but mainly he will focus on the nation of Israel. The first 3 ½ years of the Daniel’s 70th Week will be business as usual. At the end of that time, midway through the seven years, a great world leader will die on earth. At the same time, war will be fought in heaven. Michael will cast out Satan who will enter the dead body of the world leader, and a false resurrection of a false messiah will occur. And all the earth will wonder at this event. It will be very publicized. This man will then enter the holy temple area (the Greek word in 2 Thess 2 suggests that the Temple proper is not rebuilt, but rather that the sacrifices are held in the open area of the Temple mount). There will be 3 ½ years of crazy stuff that happens on the earth.

Keep in mind, as a key to the book, that the Book of Revelation is only covering a period of 3 ½ years. To best understand this book, look for the ‘great earthquake’ as you read. This is a marker to help your understanding. Every time this book mentions the ‘great earthquake’ or ‘there was a great earthquake’, realize that it is talking about the same one!

In this way, you will see how the book repeats itself, showing things from different viewpoints (the Gospels are repetitious too, aren’t they?). If you keep in mind the earthquake, and that the book is only covering 3 ½ years, you’ll see that the two prophets show up right as the Antichrist does. After they are killed, there is a great earthquake, they come back to life, and they are called up to the Lord. That is the Rapture, and it occurs at the Revelation of the Lord.

A side note. There are two methods of interpretation that are commonly used. One is to take things literally as written, giving heed to the the historical and grammatical context. The other is to take things out of context, and read 'hidden' meanings into the passage. ALL the Pre-Trib Rapture teachers use this second method of interpretation. For example, Revelation 4:1-7 can't be used to teach a Pre-Trib Rapture IF you approach the text honestly.

I have this all written out in detail for you guys. I really have to go to sleep.

I just wanted to say one more thing: DON’T believe Clarence Larkin!


p.s. Oh by the way, if there is no front bookend to this so-called Church Age (and there isn't), then there is no division between the Gospels and the Book of Acts. The Gospels flow into the Book of Acts, and there is no nasty stagger-step in the early history of the Church. What Jesus began to do and teach in the Gospels, He continued to do and teach in Acts. And there is no reason why He can't continue to do and teach today. (And there went Dispensationalism, out the window!)



Author: Christopher
•3:42 AM
Hi kids. It's 3:42 am. I just had a thought that I wanted to share with you. You may hear some people say that when they asked Jesus into their hearts, it was a like a gray film was removed from their eyes. I just wanted to let you know that I experienced the same thing.

On the day that I accepted Christ as my Saviour, nothing happened ~ I still felt the same. But the next morning, I woke up completely changed. I can remember being outside that afternoon. I looked up at the sky, and I noticed that everything was brighter. Not physically brighter, and yet it was like I'd been wearing a pair of light gray sunglasses my entire life, and NOW I was seeing for the first time without them.

The Bible talks about veil that covers our eyes. I wonder if that's what I noticed? Anyway, you guys all were saved at a young age, and probably never experienced this. I just wanted to tell you about my own experience so you'd be able to believe it if somebody else told you.


Author: Christopher
•3:34 PM
‎"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."

The religious interpretation comes from a works-based understanding of God's blessings: "If you seek to win souls - thereby increa...sing God's kingdom - and if you seek God's righteous through a separated, holy lifestyle, THEN God will bless you." This interpretation is seen as addressing the believer who needs to be a better Christian. This interpretation makes God's blessings conditional on YOUR works.

The right interpretation comes from a grace-based understanding of God's blessings: "If you seek to enter into God's kingdom through his Son, and thereby obtain the gift of God's righteousness through faith in Jesus, THEN you get all the blessings that God has provided for in Christ!" This interpretation is seen as addressing the unbeliever who needs to be saved. This interpretation makes God's blessings conditional on Christ's finished work.


For us believers, the Kingdom of God is within us. We don't have to seek it. We just believe it.


And we have already been made the very righteousness of God, and God grants us eternal life BECAUSE we have already been counted righteous.


What?!?! You think that God's imputed righteousness is able to bring you eternal blessings, but its not able to bring you blessings in this earthly life?



Author: Christopher
•7:28 PM

I heard a thought the other day that got my gears turning. We are told to pray in Jesus' name, but some people end their prayers with "We ask these things for Jesus' sake, Amen."

Now, it's not a bad prayer. And our Father is merciful and will answer the spirit of the prayer; I'm not saying He won't.

What I'm saying is, it shows a lack of biblical understanding. When the Lord Jesus left the earth, He gave us believers authority over his kingdom. We are stewards, which means that we are in charge. We sign the checks. We make the decisions. We rule in the place of Jesus.

What we do is for Jesus' sake, obviously, and for the sake of His kingdom, but our prayers are made as the representatives of God on this earth. We pray in the stead of Jesus, in HIS name. As his deputies, so to speak.

When we realize what 'in Jesus' name' means, we understand that we are asking as if we were Jesus.

I think sometimes folks pray "for Jesus' sake" because they don't feel that their own sake is good enough. They try to get the Father to do it for the Son because he loves the Son. But He loves us, too. Didn't Jesus come to die for our sake?

No, this is an authority issue. It's a representative issue. And, honestly, it's scary because if we have to pray in Jesus' name, God might ask us to do something in Jesus' name, or speak something in Jesus' name, or even heal somebody in Jesus' name.

And that takes faith.
Author: Christopher
•10:53 PM
What a terrific Christmas pageant!! We were given tickets to an outstanding Christmas play at the Grace Brethren Church of Polaris. The singing was top notch! And, they had real camels and donkeys and goats walk through the audience! When the Magi came to visit baby Jesus, I had tears rolling down my face.

Awesome!

There were a couple of technical glitches, as with any big production, and that's what I wanted to talk about today.

One of the scenes was supposed to have a black light shining on it àla Fighting Gravity, the almost winner of America's Got Talent this year. For this scene, some people were dressed all in white and some were dressed all in black. The props were painted neon red, orange, and green.



If the black light had worked, it would have been awesome, too. But it didn't work. So, someone put on a regular spot light. Instead of blending into the shadows, the folks dressed all in black were very visible. They were lifting the white-costumed people, and juggling with balls that were on long, black sticks. It was comical.

But they didn't stop.

Everything that they did, the lifts, the flips, the 'jazz hands' were all choreographed with the understanding that the audience wouldn't be seeing the folks in black. But we COULD see them.

I felt so bad for them. And, I giggled.

But they didn't stop.

Somebody should have stopped them. Somebody should have stepped up and said, "Oops!" or "Let's try that one more time." But the entire troop just kept on doing what they'd been trained to do even though the magic was gone and the effect had been lost.

It reminded me of church. It reminded me of 'having the form of godliness' long after the power has gone out. It reminded me of traditions that keep going ... and going ... and going.

Unfortunately, there are some churches that won't admit that they are not relevant to their surroundings. They go through the motions thinking that they are the latest thing since sliced bread, when those who are watching are not really impressed. The spectators are actually embarrassed for them, and they can't help but giggle to themselves as they watch the show being performed for their sakes.

But the Light's not right.

The effect has been lost.

So why won't they stop?




Author: Christopher
•8:33 PM
This one's for the kids:

I LOVE Jesus! Your Daddy is an absolute, 100% Jesus-loving FREAK!

Sometimes during our bedtime prayers, I find myself wondering if you guys really see your Daddy's heart. When I say those bedtime prayers, it's not just the only time that I pray - I talk with Jesus all day long. He's usually the first thing on my mind in the morning when I wake up, and the last thing I think about before I fall asleep. I sing to him in the car, and I talk to him when I take a shower, and I cry for joy at the very idea that he loves me!

Yeah, I cry a lot when it comes to Jesus! He's remarkable! Indescribable! He is loving, kind, generous and good. And he always, always loves me and accepts me just the way that I am. I love to worship him!

My most fervent prayer is that each of you kids would know Jesus like I know him. I've already seen him answer my prayers by saving Aidan and Evan, and, even though she's just barely a year old, I've already prayed with tears for him to save my baby girl, Meagan. But that's just the beginning! I also pray that Christ would be formed in each of you. That you would understand that Christ is your life ... now in this world. He is your everything!

What joy you'll have! What peace! What purity of conscience! It's all him - it's all Jesus!


Author: Christopher
•1:00 PM

I realize that this may be read by a few people who won't agree with it. That's okay.

And, I realize that when there's a GIANT giant gorilla in the room, you're supposed to just be quiet and go with the flow. (But that's never been my style LOL)

And, I realize that people will think that I'm being nit-picky, and mean, and the 'intention police' will judge my motives for posting this - they always do. (I'm sad. Very sad at how off track the church of Jesus Christ can get and not even know it.)

But, somebody's gotta say something!


Last night, at church, we sang a few songs, the speaker prayed then preached, and then we had a couple of baptisms. Sounds fine, right? Wrong!

The songs were about 75% biblical. We sang a wonderful song, "I know who I am" which has a TERRIFIC line in it, "Christ is my identitiy." Now, THAT was New Testament!! Wahoo!!

But, it didn't last. We also sang a pleading song that implored the Father to wrap us in his loving embrace. Question: When did we get out of his embrace? Are we ever outside of his love? Can anything separate us from God's love? Does God only love us when we plead with him to? Or, is this song based in doubt? Doesn't it really express our desire to walk by sight and not faith? So why do they sing it?

Unbelief. Rather than thanking God for His ever-encompassing embrace, we plead with him for it. What a shame.

The opening prayer was an invitation to the Holy Spirit to join us in this place. Question: Does the Holy Spirit leave us and have to be invited back in? Is God's presence so fickle? Can we so easily be separated from the Spirit of God?

'But,' you might say, 'we are asking God for his power to be there in the church.'

God's power IS in the church. Ephesians tells us that the power that God used to raise Christ from the dead is part and parcel of the church!! So, 'why don't we experience it more,' you might ask.

Again, it is unbelief that hinders us. Not God. We are not believing what the New Testament actually says, and we are singing songs like mindless drones. (There, I said it.)

Then came our Old Testament exhortation to build up the house of God. It was definitely NOT New Testament. For one thing, the Lord Jesus is the one who is building up his church, NOT you or me. Matthew 16 is very explicit about this. And, second, we don't build up the house of God, we ARE the house of God (any New Testament epistle will tell you so). Apparently, we don't really believe that 'Christ is our identity' even though we just sang it!

The speaker (I do not say preacher) talked about how his father had a really wonderful opportunity to be a Lt. Colonel JAG lawyer...how awesome is that?!...but turned down the opportunity to become a Lutheran minister. This raised the implication: God can only use Christians in full-time ministry, but not those in the workplace.

Can you imagine the influence that a sold-out believer could have as a Lt. Colonel JAG lawyer? Wow!

Again, I don't question the man's motives. Not at all. What I do question is that the speaker implied that the only way to build God's house is to do what his father did - quit your job and join the ministry. It also implied that any Christian who didn't do so is a second-class Christian. No, he didn't say this, but that was the next step in his logic.

Question: Didn't Paul tell believers to stay where they were when they got saved? First Corinthians chapter seven tells us to 'bloom where we're planted' basically. Why didn't the speaker agree with Paul? Why didn't he tell these godly businessmen to use their positions of influence, instead of telling them to renounce these positions? (The answer is: he himself is religious, and doesn't understand/believe that Christ has already purchased God's favor for us.)

When a fella speaks to a bunch of New Testament believers from an Old Testament passage, this is the kind of works-oriented, faith-lacking stuff that you have be on the lookout for. It's religion, not New Testament Christianity.

Well, we finished up with a couple of baptisms. While the dunking was going on, the praise team led us in a song about being "cleansed" by baptism. Oy! More false doctrine!

We also sang about how baptism is a "surrender," but is it? Isn't it simply showing forth our salvation? This is like saying that putting on a wedding ring is like 'surrender.' LOL It's no such thing. It is an outward act that shows an inward faith. It is a belief thing, not a works thing. OMG! They've even managed to turn baptism into a 'work' to try to please God.


Becca and I just sat there shaking our heads. I know that we have been in the same boat, and have even said the same things, but on this side of understanding Grace, it is so, so terribly sad.



And nobody says anything.
Author: Christopher
•5:15 PM

I have fibromyalgia. I think. I used to be certain but then I attended the healing prayer meeting at our church about six months ago, and one of the guys said that the Holy Spirit told him that I have sleep apnea.

Say what?

Of course, I didn't believe him. But then, within a few weeks, my mother was diagnosed with sleep apnea, and then my brother was as well. I began to think that maybe I have sleep apnea, and not fibromyalgia. Some time passed, and I went back for another round of healing prayer. The elders prayed over me, but I didn't really believe that I was going to be healed -- I barely believed that I had sleep apnea -- and so I wasn't surprised when nothing happened.

Then, I went on a trip to Azerbaijan, and saw my very first CPAP machine (the team leader brought his along with him).

A thought entered my head: IF the Holy Ghost had told the elder guy that I did have sleep apnea, then certainly He intended to do something about it. I somehow knew that I would be receiving a CPAP machine myself.

Then, my brother came down for a visit. Unexpectedly, he brought his machine with him, and asked me to use it for one night. I began to see the divine wheels of circumstance turning; now, I was sure that I was going to get a CPAP machine! Later, my mother said that she would buy me one from a discount website. (See, the wheels were turning!) Bad news though, they only sold them to folks with a prescription. Didn't they know that the great Physician had already diagnosed me? (This turned out to be a blessing since I ended up with a much better machine.)

Time passed, and we started looking on CraigsList. A fellow about 40 minutes from here was selling a brand new Remstar Pro C-Flex+ for only $100. The machine had only 5.3 hours on it! This is a $700 machine, and it came with the humidifier, accessories, and the carrying case! Well, I drove over to meet the guy with cash in hand.

Cha-ching! The machine is mine. The $100 came from my mother. Not bad for someone with no medical insurance!

So, what does this show? God meets us where we are at, according to our faith. If I had believed that He would heal me, I wouldn't need a machine...but, honestly, that's not where I'm at. But, I can believe God for provisions.

Thanks, Jesus!

P.S. Turns out that this is the machine that my brother brought down for me to try! Talk about your divine foreshadowing! Wow!
Author: Christopher
•10:17 AM
Yeah, I'm a geek. I came across this cool little method to make an equilateral triangle, and had to share:

The principles of geometry were recorded in a series of theorems expounded by the Greek mathematician Euclid around 300 BCE. One of the first principles he alludes to is a process of dividing a straight line into two equal parts. This is done by taking the line, AB, and drawing two circles of equal diameter, one circle at each end of the line, so that they overlap.

Drawing a vertical line between the points C & D will bisect the line AB into two equal lengths. This concept can be taken one stage further when the circles, both of equal diameter, are drawn such that the circumference of one circle touches the centre of the other circle. This geometric pattern was well known to the ancients and has been passed down to us with the title Vesica Piscis. The resultant area where the two circles overlap is known as the Vesica.

It produces some interesting characteristics. For example, it is possible from this use of the two circles to determine an angle of 30° and 60°. This is shown in the diagram below


through the points where the 60° is defined by the points ACB. The bold line at an angle represents the hypotenuse of a right angle triangle, CBA. Thus, the opposite angle, BAC, is 30°. By turning this simple relationship into a rectangle (as shown by the dotted lines) and bisecting the angles with a pair of compasses, it is possible to create the angles 15°, 30°, 45°, 60°, 75° and 90°. Thus, with a simple pair of compasses and a straight edge, eg 24 inch gauge, our ancestors were able to determine the primary geometric angles regularly used.

This simple geometric structure immediately lends itself to the construction of another important figure -the equilateral triangle.

So, our ancestors, through their knowledge of geometry, were able to produce, with considerable accuracy, the three most common geometric forms in their construction armoury -the circle, the square and the equilateral triangle -the latter two being derived from the basic form -the circle.


Author: Christopher
•9:05 AM
"Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies."

Again, this is for the kiddoes.

My Grandma Williams, your great grandma, was the most awesome lady of God. She was always giving whether it was food or money. She invited us over for supper all the time. She loved life. She loved to do crafts (ceramics, etc). She took care of Grandpa, who was sick much of the time, for years.


My favorite memories are of her generosity. She was so Spirit led.

One day, Becca needed a curtain rod to hang up a curtain in the window. We were broke as usual and couldn't afford one. Grandma invited us over for a meal, and afterward, as was her custom, she gave us stuff to take home with us. I'll never forget as she reached behind the dresser and said, 'Can you use these curtain rods? I've had them here for awhile and I'll never use them. Here, you take them." When she did that, my views of grandma's generosity changed. I saw that God was behind it. All the money that she gave away quietly, all the food (she'd even helped my parents out when I was just a kid myself), and all the prayers - God was working through her.


It was all hush-hush, but she often helped us with our car insurance or an electric bill. How do you tell a 90-year old woman, No? You can't, especially when you need it. We were Elijah, and she was our widow woman. God channeled his gifts and love through her to us. How humbling!! How ... stand back in awe ... glorious!


When Grandma died, I was asked to preach her funeral. It was the hardest thing that I've ever done. I had a 'message' all written up, but just then, at the beginning of the service, God spoke to me, 'Turn to Proverbs 31." And, I read it. It was my Grandma.

God in heaven told me that my Grandma, your great grandma, was a Proverbs 31 woman. In his eyes, she was far above rubies.

What a wonderful heritage!!
Author: Christopher
•9:55 PM
Sometimes the Bible ruins really good theology. A hyper-dispensationalist will say that Paul's gospel was different from Peter's gospel, and even though most believers wouldn't go that far, they will say that Paul's gospel was different from the Lord Jesus' gospel - after all, Jesus was preaching before the Cross, and Paul was preaching after it.


But is that what the Bible says?

In Matthew 24:14, Jesus tells us, "And THIS gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come."

Jesus said that the gospel that He was preaching is the same gospel that would be preached in all the world until the end of this age!

He said this again in Matthew 26:13, "Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever THIS gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her."

With this in mind, let us take a look at this gospel.

I. Jesus

1. Repent (turn from sins, to God) - "From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: ..."(Matt. 4:17)
2. Believe in Jesus - "...even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life." (John 3:14--15)
3. Be baptized - "heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John" (John 4:1-2) and "baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:" (Matt. 28:19)
4. Receive the Holy Ghost - "how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?" (Lk 11:13) and "he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost,..." (Matt. 3:11) and "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you:" (Acts 1:8)
5. Kingdom - "Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God," (Mark 1:14), etc.
6. Born Again - "Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." (John 3:3)
7. With Wonders - "...Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you" (Acts 2:22)

II. Peter

1. Repent (turn from sins, to God) - "And they went out, and preached that men should repent." (Mk 6:12) "Then Peter said unto them, Repent, ..." (Acts 2:38) and "Repent ye therefore, and be converted,..." (Acts 3:19)
2. Believe in Jesus - "Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:Whom God hath raised up, .." (Acts 2:23-24) and "every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ" (Acts 2:38) and "Unto you therefore which believe he is precious:" (I Peter 2:7)
3. Be baptized - "and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ" (Acts 2:38"
4. Receive the Holy Ghost - "and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call." (Acts 2:38-9) and "Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:" (Acts 8:15)
5. Kingdom - "For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ." (2 Peter 2:11)
6. Born Again - "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again..." (1 Peter 1:3) and "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible," (1 Peter 1:23)
7. With Wonders - "...and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles." (Acts 2:43) and "But Peter put them all forth, and kneeled down, and prayed; and turning him to the body said, Tabitha, arise. And she opened her eyes: and when she saw Peter, she sat up." (Acts 9:40) and "that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them." (Acts 5:15)u

III. Paul

1. Repent (turn from sins, to God) - "...but now commandeth all men every where to repent:" (Acts 17:30) and "...to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God," (Acts 26:20)
2. Believe in Jesus - "And by him all that believe are justified from all things," (Acts 13:39)
3. Be baptized - "many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized." (Acts 18:8)
4. Receive the Holy Ghost "He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed?" (Acts 19:2)
5. Kingdom - "And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more." (Acts 20:25)
6. Born Again - "for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel." (1 Cor. 4:15) and "Onesimus, whom I have begotten in my bonds:" (Pilemon 1:17)
7. With Wonders - "And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God." (1 Cor 2:4-5) and "Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum, I have fully preached the gospel of Christ." (Rom. 15:19)

SO WHAT?!?!

So, this does several things.

First, it shows us the continuity of the New Testament. The Gospels do have some OT Law teaching that must be recognized, and Acts has a little as well, but the Gospel itself is the same. The method of winning the lost is the same.

Second, it negates a bunch of hyper-dispensational (and regular dispensational) nonsense that separates US from the words of Jesus.

And, Third, it reveals that the authority and power given to the Twelve, and to the Seventy, and to the 120, is for US today.

THIS is God's plan.

"As my Father has sent me, so send I you."
Author: Christopher
•4:05 PM

"For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep." (1 Cor. 11:30)

I was reading through First Corinthians today, just seeing what the Lord would show me. When I got to chapter 11, I saw something in a different way. I hope it helps your life.


Does God cause believers to be sickly and weak, and even dead, because they don't 'examine' their sins at the Lord's Supper? I have heard it preached that, "If you don't judge yourself, God will judge you! He will chasten you with weakness, sickness, and even death!"

Okay, death isn't really chastening, since you can't properly respond to death in this life, but you get the idea: You judge your hidden sins, or GOD WILL GET YOU!

And thus, the Lord's Supper became a time of fearful introspection where we focused upon OURSELVES rather than on Jesus.

I have also heard it said that it was not our sins that we were to judge, but rather our manner of taking the Lord's Supper. Some folks weren't eating at home first; they were coming to the Lord's Supper, and treating it like a free meal. They were indulging a little bit too much at the 'potluck', if you know what I mean. These believers, so light-hearted about such a serious matter, would be judged by God if they didn't repent.

But I don't buy it. I've been made the righteousness of God in Christ. I've been purged from my old sins. My conscience has been sprinkled from dead works to serve the living God. I am sanctified, holy, and a partaker of the divine nature.


What about this interpretation:

23For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:

24And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.

25After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.

26For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.

27Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. The "whosoever" in the Corinthian church would have included the saved AND THE LOST. Paul gives these people the Gospel in chapter 15! "Unworthily" therefore means that they are partaking of the symbolic bread and wine WITHOUT HAVING PARTAKEN of the actual body and blood of Jesus. They are still at enmity with God, and "guilty" of the Lord's body. They are 'professors' and not 'possessors.'

28But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. Examination then is not an introspective focus on the sins of the believer, but a call to the UNBELIEVER to "examine" whether or not he is truly born again. If he is saved, and has partaken of the ACTUAL body and blood of Christ, then, of course, there is nothing restraining him from partaking of this SYMBOLIC bread and wine.

29For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. If an unbeliever partakes of the Lord's Supper, he is actually drinking to his own damnation! He doesn't realize that he is SYMBOLICALLY partaking of the Saviour whom he has never accepted. He will be without excuse at the final judgment for he certainly has heard the Gospel as presented in the Lord's Supper.

30For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. Because of this, Paul says, there are some folks coming to the church who aren't healed. Some have even died. Rather than implying that believers are sick because of unconfessed sin in their lives (Which is a fallacy since ALL our sins have already been forgiven in Christ; they don't exist anymore!), this verse is saying that the unbeliever is sick because he isn't saved! He can't partake of the benefits of the New Covenant, because he is not part of it!

31For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. This is therefore not a judging of sins, which have ALL been judged at the Cross for the believer, but rather a judging of the heart. I judged myself as a sinner in December of 1985, and called out to God to save me. Because of this, I will NEVER again be judged on the matter of my eternal salvation; I have been made the righteousness of God in Christ. The "we" in this verse includes everybody.

32But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. Here, "we" refers to believers. When "we" Christians are judged by God, it results in "chastening" not in "damnation." When a crooked sapling is tied to a stake, it has been 'judged' to be 'not straight'; therefore it is 'chastened' or tied to a stake. This chastening has the sapling's best future interest at heart, and is based in love. We are chastened, but we are not "condemned with the world." The word "condemned" is the same as "damnation." Damnation is a judicial punishment with a view toward past sins. This is NOT how the believer is judged.

33Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another.

34And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come. Because the Gospel is so clearly presented at the Lord's Supper, don't just rush through it. Give the unbeliever time to respond. You don't want to rush through it and have somebody 'eat and drink unto damnation', do you?


Can you see how fear is removed for the Believer? Do you see how the focus is removed from self? In it's place is left the simple command to 'remember the Lord til he comes.' Voila! The Lord's Supper becomes a time of REJOICING, and focusing on the Saviour. It is a time of remembering the finished work of Christ. It edifies. It encourages.


After realizing this, I searched through a bunch of old commentaries (and new ones) on the internet, and was surprised that nobody agreed with me. Then I looked at Andrew Wommack's site, and, lo and behold, he saw it exactly the same way. You can read his commentary here.